21 de febrero de 2008


Philip Stanley Wilberforce Goldson (July 25, 1923-October 3, 2001) was a Belizean newspaper editor, activist and politician. He served in the House of Representatives of Belize as member for the Albert Division from 1961 to 1998 and twice as a Minister. He was a founding member of the People's United Party (PUP), National Independence Party (NIP), United Democratic Party (UDP) and National Alliance for Belizean Rights (NABR).

His favorite quote: “The time to save your country is before you lose it.”

Early life and Education
Goldson was born in Belize City to Peter Edward Goldson and Florence Babb and attended St. John's College High School, graduating in 1939. For much of the early 1940's he participated in the Open Forum movement featuring fellow SJC graduates George Price and Leigh Richardson as well as older activists such as Clifford Betson and Antonio Soberanis. But his main job was as editor of the Belize Billboard, which he took up in 1941.Channel 5, September 19, 2001
Participation in the Nationalist Movement
In 1950, Belize's first major political party, the PUP, was formed under John Smith as leader. Goldson was named Assistant Secretary, working under George Price. He continued to edit the Billboard and kept it running as a daily newspaper until its offices were destroyed in the late 1960's. In 1956, he resigned from his post along with nine others, citing Price's ambitious moves within the party hierarchy. They would never work together again. On election day 1954, he married Hadie Jones, with whom he would father six children.

Days in Opposition
Goldson joined Leigh Richardson under the Honduran Independence Party and contested the 1957 election unsuccessfully. He failed again as a member of the National Independence Party in 1961 but won one of two seats in the House for the NIP. This began his role as the long-running member of the Opposition; from 1961 to 1974 he sat in the House alone (he was appointed after the NIP lost all eighteen seats to the PUP in 1961 elections), joined only by Edwin Morey from 1965 to 1969, and remained in opposition until the PUP lost elections in 1984. Goldson, according to historian Assad Shoman, singlehandedly kept the two party system in Belize alive at a time when citizens distrusted the PUP and ignored the NIP. Goldson, however, eventually left to pursue a law degree in London, returning in 1974 after the formation of the UDP. After Theodore Aranda was deposed as leader of the UDP in 1982, Goldson ran unsuccessfully against Manuel Esquivel for the post of UDP leader, but won a Ministership in 1984.

Second life with the NABR
Upon the occasion of the Maritime Areas Act's passage in 1991, Goldson led a group of politicians away to start the National Alliance for Belizean Rights (NABR). He charged that the PUP and UDP had hijacked politics in Belize for themselves and pledged to fight Belize's cause. But he was becoming increasingly stricken by blindness and though winning his seat again and serving as Minister of Immigration and Human Resources[1] from 1993-98, his time was nearly up. Former friend George Price retired in 1996 and Goldson announced he would do the same after the 1998 election.

Death and Honours
Goldson left Belize to treat his medical condition but did not succeed. He died in the United States on October 3, 2001 and was buried several days later with a state funeral. A few weeks prior to his death he was awarded the Order of Belize for his patriotism and political work.
Author and sculptor Stephen Okeke has been soliticing contributions for a bust of Goldson, similar to one created for George Price. As of December 31, 2007, the project is complete, having overcome financial difficulties, and will be exhibited at the Pallotti Junction in Belize City.
In 1989, the Philip S. W. Goldson International Airport was renamed in his honour.

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