Calypsonian the Mighty Sparrow (Slinger Francisco) will be awarded the Order of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, the nation’s highest award.
The announcement was made by Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar on the eve of her departure to China on an official visit last week.
Persad-Bissessar said the government had also agreed to cover all medical expenses incurred by Sparrow during his recent illness, which had left him in a coma for weeks in a New York hospital recently.
“I am very pleased to announce, in your distinguished presence, that I have advised his Excellency President Anthony Carmon to confer on you, Dr. Slinger Francisco, the Mighty Sparrow, the prestigious Order of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago, the highest national recognition and honor which can be awarded to any citizen,” she said while attending the annual Siparia Women’s Association Kiddies Carnival competition in South Trinidad.
The prime minister said the award was a fitting tribute for the contributions Sparrow has made to Trinidad and Tobago and to the world.
Persad-Bissessar said in the immortal words of his calypsos and the unique style of showmanship, Sparrow has entertained “our senses and challenged our sensibilities.”
She said Sparrow’s words have inspired, reflected, caused serious introspection and, at times, have just provided sheer lyrical musical delight.