By Robert A. Emmanuel
The Leonard Tim Hector Memorial Committee and Hector’s family have expressed their fury with the presentation of an award to popular social media influencer, J’Truth, which bears the late activist’s name.
Last week, J’Truth received the Leonard Tim Hector Impact Award for Social Activism from the organisers of the Antigua and Barbuda Gospel Music and Media Awards (ABGMA) for his social activism due to his Facebook Live shows.
In a joint statement yesterday, Hector’s family and the committee disassociated themselves from the award, claiming it was “a direct affront to the memory of a man who was held in high regard internationally, for his journalism, his intellect and revolutionary activism”.
Observer media reached out to members of the family and committee for more clarity, however, it was made clear they felt the press release was sufficient and no further comment was necessary.
However, Dr James Knight, who issued the statement on behalf of the family and Memorial Committee stated that the organisers should explain their “insult” to the family.
Meanwhile, individuals have been quick to respond to the news on social media.
Prime Minister Gaston Browne, on his Facebook page, responded, “I support their sentiments. How can any organisation of integrity honour such a morally bankrupt, depraved person?”
Meanwhile, Senator Aziza Lake stated, “…associating Tim with the likes of him … shameful.”
However, some persons supported J’Truth receiving this award commenting, “we may not always agree with his delivery, but he has shown authenticity and freedom of expression. Allow the youth man to thrive and improve along his journey”.
J’Truth also responded to the developments during a call with Observer media.
“Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, I do not think they are stating that the award comes from Tim Hector; I think the award is just recognising someone else who has done similar work in terms of freedom of the press and fighting against the administration,” he said.
He added that the youth who listen to his shows and follow his social media platform will now be more interested in understanding who Hector was.
The late Leonard “Tim” Hector was an Antiguan journalist and political activist, known for his criticisms against the ruling Antiguan and Barbudan government in his newspaper, the Outlet.
He died on November 12 2002.