Niala is Panday’s only child with his first wife Norma who died in 1981. Panday and his wife Oma have three daughters, Mickela, Nicola and Vastala. Mickela is the Member of Parliament for Oropouche West.
Panday told Newsday that he and Mrs Panday are overjoyed about being grandparents.
The Pandays will leave for Scotland on Sunday and will be there for the next two weeks. Stating that he promised Niala that both he and Mrs Panday would visit her, the UNC leader said he will miss this year’s Carnival celebrations.
Apart from the personal joy which the birth of a child brings, Panday said he was glad to put the political arena and the rift in the UNC with Chief Whip Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj and Chaguanas West MP Jack Warner aside. “It is a welcome diversion,” he stated.
Maharaj congratulated Panday. “Politics is such a stressful job that if you make it to be a grandfather, it is an achievement,” he said.
Maharaj will be attending Carnival festivities in his Tabaquite constituency as well as activities in Warner’s Chaguanas West constituency over the four-day Carnival weekend. Health Minister Jerry Narace said he was happy to learn that Panday has become a grandfather.
“I want to extend congratulations to the Panday family and join in their joy and happiness,” Narace said. Stating that he will be playing Mas in Tribe on Carnival Monday and Tuesday as well as attending some other Carnival events over the long weekend, Narace wished all citizens and visitors a safe and enjoyable Carnival.
“Congratulations to him,” was Diego Martin West MP Dr Keith Rowley’s response to the news that Panday became a grandfather. Rowley said he would be going to the Panorama finals tonight and some other fetes over the weekend. As far as Carnival Monday and Tuesday, Rowley said he was “playing it by ear.” Prime Minister Patrick Manning will be spending the Carnival period between his official residence in St Ann’s or his townhouse in Vistabella, San Fernando.
The Prime Minister’s wife, Local Government Minister Hazel Manning, normally plays Mas with Tribe but will not be doing so this year.