Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley yesterday slammed the UNC for its ‘offensive’ political advertisements which portray black people in a negative light.
Speaking during an i95.5FM radio interview, the Prime Minister commented on a UNC ad which featured an Afro-Trinidadian child, who looks homeless and starved, looking longingly at people having fun on a truck in a UNC motorcade.
The Prime Minister said he had no problem with political ads attacking the Government for its performance or lack thereof.
‘But I really take umbrage as a black person in this country to see a political party that was in the government of Trinidad and Tobago and that wants to be the government again, portraying black people in the way that those ads are portraying us. There is an ad with a little black child, I don’t know if the UNC campaign management knows how offensive that ad is.
‘If I had made an ad like that with a child of East Indian descent with that conversation in that ad, everybody else who was anti-PNM would know how to take it,’ he said.
Chris and Kamal
The Prime Minister said the young people of the country must be taught to aspire to success. ‘We have to accept that we have difficulties but we have made progress, that we have something to be proud of. ‘And if there is nothing to be proud of then the child would put the yellow hair or even Donald Trump’s head on the superhero.
‘Is it because there are no other black people that could symbolise us in this country that you have drawn that (picture) of us…And that is the problem, you have to have exemplars so that young people can know that there is a space where success is ours and that respect is earned. Otherwise you become what?’
On social media yesterday there was strong criticism of the UNC ads.
Many condemned the use of a ‘child’.
People also criticised the two ‘Trinity Triangle’ ads featuring two men- ‘Chris’ and ‘Kamal’, which highlighted the differences in the way each of them treated an Afro-Trinidadian woman who was begging for food. Chris upbraided her, while Kamal fed her.