Arthur Francis Williams, OBE
Former Attorney General, St. Vincent and the Grenadines
Arthur Francis Williams was a lawyer and a former Attorney General of St. Vincent and the Grenadines.
Early life and education
Arthur Williams was born in St. Vincent and the Grenadines in 1933. He attended the prestigious London School of Economics from 1964 to 1968 where he obtained his LLB in 1967 and his LLM in 1968 specialising in corporate law, personal taxation, business taxation and estate planning.
While at the London School of Economics, Williams was president of the West Indian Society. He was called to the Inner Temple Bar, as well as the local bar in 1969, and also established Williams & Williams in 1969.
Williams has been in private practice since 1969, except for the period 1975 to 1984 when he served as a parliamentarian and Cabinet Minister in the St Vincent Labour Party (SVLP) administration.
In December 1974, Williams was elected as the Parliamentary Representative for the West St George constituency. He was re-elected in 1979 and continued to serve until April 1984. He served as the Minister of Legal Affairs from 2 January 1975 to 27 October 1979 when the role of Attorney General was added to his portfolio. He served as Minister for Communications and Works from 20 March 1980 to 27 July 1983; and as Minister for Communications, Works, and Labour from 28 July 1983 to 12 April 1984.
Williams was instrumental in formulating and drafting current legislation, including the Status of Children Act, in his position as a member of the House of Assembly. He also served as the Windward Island Director of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Authority.
In addition to his long and distinguished career in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Williams was called to the bar and practised in Dominica, Barbados and the British Virgin Islands (BVI), and has offered his expert opinion on radio and television on numerous occasions. Additionally, he attended various conferences, including a constitutional conference in 1979 in England, the Commonwealth Law Ministers Conference in Winnipeg, Canada, and the Commonwealth Parliamentary Conferences in Guyana and Kenya.
Honours and awards
In recognition of his contribution to St. Vincent and the Grendines and for his services generally, Williams was awarded as an Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Her Majesty the Queen in 2006.
Williams was married and the father of three sons.
Williams died on 7 August 2018 at his Queen’s Drive home, aged 85. He was accorded an Official Funeral on on Saturday, 18 August 2018 at the Kingstown Methodist Church, St. Vincent.