Jamaica’s Agriculture Minister Floyd Green has resigned following the surfacing of a video of him at a gathering that reportedly occurred during a “no-movement” day.
In the video, which was posted on social media on Tuesday, Green along with Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) councillor for the Mona Division in the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation, Andrew Bellamy, were seen celebrating and toasting alcohol.
Green and Bellamy joined with others in the maskless group in a toast after a member said “no movement day”. The gathering was held at the district 5 restaurant at the R Hotel in Kingston.
Leader of the Opposition Mark Golding was just one of the public figures that called on Floyd Green to resign.
In a statement this morning, Golding says for a Minister of Government, who ought to be setting an example for the population as a whole, to be flouting the no-movement day restrictions and partying with friends, is an arrogant insult to the people of Jamaica.
He described Green’s action as an inexcusable, disgraceful dereliction of duty.
“Ordinary Jamaicans would be locked up and charged with offences under the DRMA [Disaster Risk Management Act] for doing this. Yet a Government Minister and his cronies were there yesterday flossing and braffing away as if the COVID restrictions mean nothing, showing utter contempt for the rules that his Government has imposed on the people,” the statement read.
Jamaicans are restricted from moving on lockdown days – Sunday to Tuesday, with exemptions given to certain individuals to move in relation to their specific work.
Among the selected groups who are exempted on no-movement days are essential service workers and persons visiting vaccination sites to get vaccinated.
Prime Minister Andrew Holness asked Green to hand in his resignation.
Green apologized for his actions, saying it demonstrated a lack of sensitivity. He said the lapse in judgment will never happen again.
“Today, I have disappointed so many. My family including my son, my Prime Minister and most importantly, the people of Jamaica who I have sworn to serve. I accept that this was an error in judgment and that it sends the wrong signal especially in light of the Government’s drive to reduce the spread of COVID-19. For this, I am really and truly very sorry,” a statement from Green read.
He will remain as the Member of Parliament for St Elizabeth South West.