PM Dr. Ralph Gonsalves petitions for the exoneration of the Right Excellent Marcus Mosiah Garvey

Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves has issued a rallying call for support for a Petition to exonerate the right Excellent Marcus Mosiah Garvey, National Hero of Jamaica.

The Prime Minister made the call in a Memorandum to the People, Mass Organisations and Civil Society in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, the Caribbean, Africa, the United States of America and the World.

According to the Memorandum, there is currently an ongoing campaign to secure the exoneration of the Right Excellent Marcus Mosiah Garvey National Hero of Jamaica, from what it described as his unjust, flawed, and dubious conviction for mail fraud offences in the United States of America in 1923.  The Memorandum said the trial was farcical, and Garvey was sentenced to a maximum of five years.  His imprisonment commenced in 1925, and he served nearly three years.  He was then deported to Jamaica, and died in London in 1940 at the age of 53 years. In 1964 his body was returned to Jamaica for re-burial in the country’s National Heroes Park.

The Memorandum noted that Marcus Garvey was an outstanding Caribbean leader, a Black Nationalist and Pan-Africanist who, in the early 20th century, built the largest ever mass political movement of black people globally: The Universal Negro Improvement Association.  It also noted that Garvey greatly influenced the political outlook of distinguished leaders from the Caribbean, including Michael Manley; P.J. Patterson; Portia Simpson-Miller; Maurice Bishop and Roosevelt Douglas.  He also influenced leaders in Africa and the United States of America.

The Memorandum urged persons and organisations globally, who are wedded to justice, fair play, truth, human rights and sustainable development, whatever their nationality, ethnicity, class or religious orientation to join the current campaign to exonerate Marcus Garvey.

Persons can sign the petition online at during the month of February, which is observed as Black History Month.