PEI

Former L-G, cabinet minister Gilbert Clements dies

Former P.E.I. lieutenant-governor and long-serving politician Gilbert Clements died in hospital early Tuesday morning in Montague.
Gilbert Clements was 84. (CBC)

Former P.E.I. lieutenant-governor and long-serving politician Gilbert Clements died in hospital early Tuesday morning in Montague.

Clements was first elected to the P.E.I. legislature in 1970 and held numerous cabinet posts, including finance and environment. He served as the interim P.E.I. Liberal party leader and opposition party leader in 1981, during the leadership race that eventually saw Joe Ghiz take over the party.

Clements was the 25th lieutenant governor of P.E.I., serving from 1995 to 2001.

Clements had this to say about his life in politics in an interview with CBC News several years ago.

"I worked hard in politics all my life. I enjoyed every minute of it," he said.

"I was at it so long that it got so I even enjoyed the abuse. But I say that jokingly, because it has been a wonderful experience and I wouldn't have changed any of it."

P.E.I. Fisheries Minister Ron MacKinley remembers Clements as a man who spoke his mind and was forward looking.

"Gilbert, when you look back, was probably ahead of his time," said MacKinley.

"He was a very astute person when it came to the environment. And at that time the environment wasn't a top issue."

Liberal senator Percy Downe said Clements was "never a politician to go along to get along." Downe said history has proved Clements right regarding his views on the environment.

Clements was 84 years old.

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