A former trade unionist has seemingly made light of the accident in which President of the Barbados Secondary Teachers’ Union (BSTU) Mary Redman damaged ligaments in her left ankle while participating in a march last week Tuesday.
Former Deputy General Secretary of the Barbados Workers’ Union (BWU) Robert Bobby Morris Friday said the accident seemed “a bit contrived”.
Redman twisted her ankle at Queen’s Park, The City when the area on which she stepped after completing her presentation gave way.
She had been addressing more than 400 shop stewards and members of the BSTU, the BWU, the Barbados Union of Teachers and the National Union of Public Workers ahead of a march to Independence Square to protest against the National Social Responsibility Levy, which climbed from two per cent to ten per cent effective July 1.
“You realize that Mary Redman has a membership of about 350 people, and you realize that the woman went into the park with about 400 [people] and she was the only person who a hole found. I can’t understand. Four hundred people in the park and the hole found the foot of one person – the trade union leader – and the Leader of the Opposition had to lift her up, apparently,” Morris said while delivering a lecture at the Democratic Labour Party’s headquarters as part of the party’s weekly Astor B Watts lunchtime lecture series.
“This look so funny to me. It seems a bit contrived to me first of all. I do not know the circumstances, but how come 400 people in the park and one person, the leader [of the BSTU], becomes a casualty? It doesn’t make sense to me.”
However, his comment was not funny to Redman who told Barbados TODAY Friday afternoon she was slowly on the mend.
The BSTU leader expressed surprise at the comment, describing it as strange, unbelievable, sad and offensive, and she called for an apology from Morris.
“I cannot imagine what would make him think that I would be part and parcel of something contrived. Towards what end? To achieve what? I am so disappointed in him, honestly,” Redman said.
“For him to make such a statement I believe it is really beneath him and it is surprising because he knows me for years in relation to trade union matters and he has never in the years that we have known each other, known me to be in a position of compromise of my integrity or honesty as an individual. So for him to ascribe dubious motive and dishonesty to an incident that occurred with me is distressing to me because he is calling my character into question and I take umbrage with that, and I think that he owes me an apology. That is the truth,” she protested, adding, “that alleged behaviour by him is bringing his credibility into question”.
Redman has been on crutches since the accident and the healing process is expected to take between six and eight weeks.