British Virgin Islands

Saturday, Sep 26, 2020

Gov’s reparation comment ‘cannot be swept under the rug’

Gov’s reparation comment ‘cannot be swept under the rug’

Pastor and ZBVI Radio moderator, Mr Claude O. Skelton-Cline has reiterated his call for Governor of the Virgin Islands (VI) His Excellency Augustus J.U. Jaspert to apologise to the people of the Territory over his comments that, as a position of the United Kingdom (UK), the VI has no reparations to get for acts of slavery.

The Governor made the now infamous comments during a Monday, September 7, 2020, Facebook interview with 284 Media, sparking immediate public outrage in sections of the VI community, with some social commentators even calling for him to be removed from the post.

Honour is due to VI ancestors – Skelton-Cline


“These things cannot be swept under the rug, these are real and dear things… and we must do our part to ensure that honour and due respect are due to our fore-parents,” Skelton-Cline said on the September 12, 2020, edition of the ‘Honestly Speaking’ radio show.

When questioned on his position over the renaming of places named after slave owners, the Governor further called for relics of that slavery era in the VI to be preserved.

The pastor, on behalf of the people of the Territory, had previously urged the governor to apologise for the statements; however, those requests have fallen on deaf ears.

Now, according to Skelton-Cline, the Deputy Governor Mr David D. Archer Jr should also step in a get the Governor to address the issue. “I hope that our Deputy Governor, who is one of us… I would trust that he too will lend his voice behind private chambers to this Governor regarding such matters,” he said.


Radio host and Social commentator Kenneth G. Gladstone became the second radio moderator to condemn the governor statements, calling it ‘absolutely insulting’ to the people of the territory.


No apologizing for apologizing sake – Skelton-Cline


So far, radio host and social commentator Kenneth G. Gladstone became the second radio moderator to condemn the governor's statements, calling it ‘absolutely insulting’ to the people of the Territory.

“I’m a black man, and when a white man who represents slavery can tell me that I don’t deserve reparations, you infuriate the hell out of me,” Gladstone told Virgin Islands News Online after invited comments.

“I would hope that the Governor and his cohorts don’t think that they just apologising because Claude Skelton-Cline says so,” the man of the cloth said.

“I am simply one of the multiplicity of voices that have joined the chorus calling and demanding this kind of apology for the verbal assault and the position beyond the assault for our ancestors who sacrificed life,” Skelton-Cline related.

Pastor and ZBVI Radio moderator, Claude O. Skelton-Cline has reiterated his calls for Governor of the Virgin Islands (VI) H.E. Augustus J.U. Jaspert to apologize to the people of the territory over his comments that the VI has no reparations to get for acts of slavery perpetrated, as a position of the UK.


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