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Barbados Prime Minister To Speak At Upcoming Baltimore Conference

Barbados Prime Minister, Mia Amor Mottley. Image courtesy of Jean-Philippe Escard.

Mia Amor Mottley, the first woman to serve as prime minister of Barbados and leader of the Barbados Labour Party, recently confirmed her attendance at the upcoming State of the Black World Conference V, which convenes from April 19-23, in Baltimore.

Mottley, who has served as prime minister since 2018 and as leader of the Barbados Labour Party since 2008, will deliver a major speech at next month’s conference at the Baltimore Convention Center. Prime Minister Mottley will be presented the IBW Legacy Award at the conference’s Women’s Leadership Summit for her historic roles.

“We are honored and delighted that Prime Minister Mia Mottley has accepted our invitation to play a major role in the State of the Black World Conference V,” Dr. Ron Daniels, president of the Institute of the Black World 21st Century (IBW), said.

The conference is being organized by IBW and its international, national and local partners. 

“Prime Minister Mottley has shown an eagerness in expanding and strengthening the global reparations movement,” Daniels said.

Mottley will join Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, president of the Republic of Ghana, in addressing the conference with the theme, “Global Africans Rising, Empowerment, Reparations and Healing.” The five-day convening seeks to strengthen the rising U.S. and global reparations movements and to explore strategies that can address social, political and economic issues negatively affecting the African diaspora.

“The State of the Black World Conference makes perfect sense for international, national and local leaders. Baltimore is historically rich and important to African Americans. I think local leaders in Baltimore have a lot to offer at this conference,” Malik Ngugi, a second year student from Wichita, KS, who studies political science and Spanish, said. 

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Ngugi mentioned that, during the convening, local leaders can remind the international community about the importance of investing in Black communities on a local level. 

“Local and national leaders can highlight some of the problems and solutions African Americans are talking about with international leaders that are visiting the city, perhaps for the first time,” Ngugi concluded. 

Listed goals of the assembly include reassessing the implications of the 2022 midterm election for Black America and African diaspora; expanding reparations movements to empower and heal Black families, communities and nations; and advancing strategies and models to improve political and economic conditions for the diaspora.

The convening will feature sessions on issues such as environmental justice, displacement and gentrification, the ongoing crisis in Haiti, socially responsible economic development, combating gun violence and public safety and law enforcement reformation and more.

The intergenerational assembly seeks to galvanize members of the global African diaspora from all sectors and industries, especially students, youth and community-based organizations. In effort to convene Black youth and entrepreneurs, the conference will feature a young leader and student caucus, a hip hop summit and an African marketplace with cultural exhibits and trade booths.

IBW and its partners are contacting administrators and student leaders from national Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and requesting that the vital and invaluable institutions send contingents of students to Baltimore to engage with international and national attendees.

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HBCUs such as Howard University, Fayetteville State University, Jackson State University, Jarvis Christian University, Morgan State University and Virginia State University have all confirmed interest in having students attend the convening.

“As young Black people, it will be our task and responsibility to exceed the progress that older generations achieved fighting for equity,” Ngugi said, discussing the importance of young people attending the next month’s conference. 

“I think our attendance will show the investment we have in our own future,” Ngugi continued. 

Conference organizers expect leaders from human rights, faith, labor and political spheres around the world to attend the convening, and many are confirming their participation.

International scholar-activist Dr. Julius Garvey, son of Pan-African leader Marcus Garvey, is the honorary chairman of the conference. Dr. Garvey will be joined by renowned actor-activist Danny Glover, who is the U.N. Ambassador for the Decade for People of African Descent, and P. J. Patterson, the former leader of Jamaica and the longest-serving prime minister in the Caribbean.

Also expected to participate in the historic opening session are the prime minister of Grenada, Dickon Mitchell, and vice president of Colombia, Francia Marquez.

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“Once Vice President [Francia] Marquez from Colombia confirms, we will have a formidable trio of leaders embracing the cause of reparatory justice as the ‘human rights issue of the 21st Century’ as proclaimed by Professor Hilary Beckles,” Daniels said.

To recognize outstanding Pan-African leaders from the global diaspora, the conference will also feature a global Black mayors and elected officials roundtable and an award ceremony.

Interested attendees can register for the upcoming conference and find the preliminary agenda and list of facilitators, speakers and invited guests here. For more information on IBW and the State of the Black World Conference V, contact

Copy edited by Chanice McClover-Lee


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