Caribbean Leaders to Demand Reparations at Historic US Conference

Barbados's Prime Minister Mia Mottley speaks during a press conference at an event where leaders of Caribbean nations meet for a two-day conference to discuss the region's approach to the COP27 climate talks, in Nassau, Bahamas August 17, 2022. REUTERS/Dante Carrer/File Photo
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SEVERAL CARIBBEAN leaders will demand reparations for slavery at a historic conference in the United States this week, April 19 – 23, at the Baltimore Convention Center and the Hilton Inner Harbor Hotel in Baltimore, Maryland.


State of the Black World Conference (SOBWC) is a five-day conference to examine the condition of Black people in the US and globally.

The event will see black leaders from the US, Africa, the Caribbean and South America gather together for the first time – in the United States – to discuss key issues impacting the lives of black people around the world.

Barbados Prime Minister, Mia Amor Mottley will deliver a major address on reparations.

Dr Ron Daniels, president and CEO of the Institute of the Black World 21st Century (IBW21), the organisation that is hosting the landmark event is looking forward to welcoming Ms Mottley.

He said: “She has shown an eagerness to work with President Addo of Ghana in expanding and strengthening the global reparations movement.

“Once Vice-President Francia Marquez from Colombia confirms, we will have a formidable trio of leaders embracing the cause of reparatory justice as the ‘human rights issue of the 21st Century’ as proclaimed by Professor Hilary Beckles.”KNOW YOUR HISTORY: Dr Julius Garvey is the Honorary Chairman of the Conference (Photo by Yana Paskova/For The Washington Post via Getty Images)

The theme for this years’ conference is ‘Global Africans Rising – Empowerment, Reparations and Healing’.

SOBWC will also feature a tribute to the great Pan-African revolutionary Maurice Bishop, late Prime Minister of the People’s Revolutionary Government of Grenada.

The tribute will be presented by the current Grenadian Prime Minister Dikon Mitchell.

Dr Julius Garvey, son of the Honourable Marcus Mosiah Garvey and a global Pan-African icon in his own right, is the Honorary Chairman of the Conference.

In a statement ahead of the conference, Dr Garvey said: “At this time of international crises and transformation of global hegemonic systems of dominance, it is important that African civilization norms and prescriptions for sustainable development be formalized and structured as we repair the damage caused by the last 500 years of European materialism, industrialization and oppressive dehumanization.

“Topics to be discussed include the unification of the continent via rail, road, airways, language and customs union to facilitate the African continental free trade agreement. Trade, commerce, investment and closer formalized ties with the Diaspora. Climate change, environmental pollution and reparations for the ravages caused by the slave trade, colonialism, neo-colonialism, and the Bretton Woods consensus.”

Dr Garvey added that he expects the event to create a “dynamic agenda for African unity, healing and empowerment as we create our humanised social and geopolitical presence for the future and secure our position for the new world order.”

Jamaica’s longest-serving prime Minister PJ Patterson will also be attending the event in Baltimore and will speak on the first day of SOBWC.



Mr Patterson’s speech is expected to focus on the mission to transform post-colonial societies in the Caribbean and Africa and to enhance democracy and development in those parts of the Black world.

There will be representation from Africa also, with Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, President of Ghana  scheduled to deliver a keynote speech.

The President is slated to deliver a keynote address on the theme of the conference, ‘Global Africans Rising: Empowerment, Reparations and Healing,’”

“Having President Addo of Ghana participate in the conference is particularly significant because he is rapidly emerging as the global champion for reparations among heads of state in Africa. His address to the Accra Summit on Reparations last summer was truly historic. His Keynote Address on reparations coupled with those of other heads of state and leading reparations advocates will elevate this  conference to one of the most  significant in the 21st century,” Dr Daniels said.

Other notables listed as panelists or presenters include Hollywood actor and activist Danny Glover and Sir Hilary Beckles, chair of the CARICOM Reparations Committee and several other leading human rights groups.

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