Prime Minister Mia Mottley Tuesday night broke her silence on the Black Lives Matter movement – after it was re-energised with the killing of a middle-aged African-American man, George Floyd, by a white police officer who kneeled on his neck until he died.
Speaking amid criticism that she has been silent amid the civil rights protests which have erupted in the US and spread worldwide, she declared that she had no issues supporting principles, but that as chairman of CARICOM she needed to be mindful of the comments she made.
Mottley is set to leave the six-month rotating chair of the 15-member community of mostly majority black nations next month.
She told the House in her first speech on the floor since March 20: “It is easy for people to talk blindly, I note it in this country, there are those who are saying for example, that I have said nothing on Black Lives Matter.
There are those who are forgetting that at this time I speak not just as Prime Minister of Barbados but for another two to three weeks as chairman of CARICOM and they would do well to understand that I have never believed in jumping on bandwagons but I believe fundamentally in supporting principles.
“I am not going to take lashes for things because people chose not to get into fights or not to engage in arguments. “I give this country the assurance that whether it is a march or not, this country is not going to support behaviour that in any way reflects unfair treatment, discriminatory treatment or unconscious bias.