Speaking during a live interview with 284 media on Monday Governor Augustus Jaspert was asked: “Do you think an apology is warranted and those descendants of those enslaved should be compensated?”
The question was asked on the backdrop that the BVI also had slaves and by extension, their lineage lives on.
He replied: “I think it was a horrific period in British history, and a disgusting approach was taken in terms of how people were treated less than people, and I think this should never be forgotten. In terms of the past, I think it is an issue that I think is right to recognize and to think through in terms of ensuring that we keep on tackling and challenging any injustices.”
He continued: “In terms of specifically on reparations I know that has put forward a lot, but it is not a position that the United Kingdom has taken, it is not something that here, is in a position, but I think it is always worth ensuring that we learn the lessons from the past and we reflect on what a horrific period in our history that was.”
Speaking to the issue on Tuesday, September 8, 2020, during his show, Skelton Cline asked: “How much longer we as a people will continue to tolerate this kind of a treatment from the United Kingdom and its representative?”
“It’s out of order, it is wrong and Governor Jaspert, you need to apologize to the people of these Virgin Islands for desecrating the story, the suffering, the pain, the enslavement of our ancestors. He and them can’t envisage reparations, [but] they got paid, to put us in slavery, they got paid to throw us into dungeons, they got paid to whip us with scars left on our back, in our spirits, and in our minds, they got paid to denigrate our humanity, our dignity, to throw our sisters, our aunts, our mothers use of their bodies for their good pleasure. They got paid to steal our birthright, they got paid to enslave our ancestors and you can’t envisage reparations?” he asked.
Advice is what we ask for when we already know the answer but wish we didn’t.