By Latrishka Thomas
“We consider Harvard’s failure to acknowledge
its obligations to Antigua and the stain it bears from benefiting from the
blood of its people, as shocking if not immoral.”
These are the sentiments embedded in a recent
letter written by Prime Minister Gaston Browne which was addressed to the
President of Harvard University, Dr Lawrence Bacow, in which Browne is
demanding that Harvard University pays reparations to the twin island state for
the benefits it derived from Antiguan slaves.
In a letter dated October 30th, Browne argued
that the law school continues to remain silent despite having received
correspondence from the Government’s Ambassador to the United States, Sir
Ronald Sanders almost a year ago.
In that letter from November 26th
2018, the government highlighted the fact that Harvard could not exist without
the labour of the country’s people since it was “a bequest of Isaac Royall Jr
[wealthy Antiguan plantation owner]
to Harvard College in 1781 that was used to
create the first endowed professorship of law in 1815, leading to the
establishment of the Harvard Law School.”
In the strongly worded missive sent just last month, Browne said that the “reparation from Harvard would compensate for its development on the backs of our people”.
Read more in today’s newspaper
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