Ikael Tafari Says Africa Had No Slaves – (Perhaps Most Africans Came To Barbados On Vacation And Were Then Enslaved?)

It was fitting that Ghana should be the gateway to national Independence on the continent for, historically, that West African country was a major gateway through which European slave-traders penetrated the interior of the Motherland, in their rapacious quest to capture those Africans who they shipped for over three centuries across the Atlantic into chattel slavery in the Caribbean and the Americas.

Incidentally, the term ‘slave trade’ misleads, implying Africans shipped to the New World were already slaves, when in fact the overwhelming majority of them were enslaved later on plantations in the West.

Ikael Tafari – Director for Barbados Commission For Pan-African Affairs in The Nation News (link here)

Doctor Tafari is once again confused and confusing. Perhaps he had been smoking some of the herb before writing his latest in The Nation News. According to him, those bad old whites “penetrated” Africa to personally capture every black person shipped across the Atlantic to the plantations.

No way the Africans themselves would have captured other tribes and sold them to the whites. No way they had slaves themselves – and as for the Muslim and Arab slave trade, it just didn’t exist. Not worthy of mention by Tafari anyway.

What a propaganda statement by Tafari as he writes off historical and contemporary African and Middle East slavery – where thousands upon thousands are still enslaved in a business that has been ongoing for hundreds of years prior to the European Atlantic slave trade.

Dr. Tafari is perpetually confused about history, religion, culture and sexual perversion – and is a strange choice for a government appointment considering his being a proponent for the legalization of marijuana. (see BFP’s Barbados Director of Commission For Pan-African Affairs Confused About Religion, Culture and Sexual Perversion AND another BFP article We Need To Send A Message To Drug Gangs And To Bajan Youth.)

Dr. Tafari needs to take a trip to Pakistan, India, Saudi Arabia and Northern Africa and keep his eyes and mind open. Christian groups still purchase what slaves they can to free them as Tafari and his peers look the other way for the convenience of their political message.

Slavery is dead as an institution in Western Civilization largely to the efforts of white Christians like William Wilberforce and his contemporaries – not because of African or Arab efforts. Yes, we know that some sex slave trade still exists everywhere – even in Barbados – but that is certainly illegal and on a different scale than the slavery and slave trade that still exists as societal institutions in Africa and the Middle East.

Like everyone, Tafari is entitled to his views – but as a government appointee his views on the legalization of marijuana and the absence of African slaves in history are given a legitimacy that they do not deserve.


Filed under Africa, Barbados, Slavery

34 responses to “Ikael Tafari Says Africa Had No Slaves – (Perhaps Most Africans Came To Barbados On Vacation And Were Then Enslaved?)

  1. pogo

    ‘Doctor’ (?) Tafari is another example of a person who completely perverts – or does not bother to check- the facts- before he spouts nonsense to prove his point.

    The European slave traders who brought slaves to Barbados were preceded by a long line of civilizations for whom slavery was a way of operating. Check out the civilizations who ran the world in times gone by i.e. Phoenicians, the Greeks, the Persians the Romans, the Macedonians, the Egyptians and other African nations and you will see that slavery always existed. It was the white guys in Britain and later the United States who fought long and hard and gave their lives to put a stop to it.

    Can we move on from some political hack beating this dead horse and all the while making up stories to suit his myopic view of the world? Don’t know how he got the appelation Doctor but it appears he never has visited a library and done a little research.

  2. Tuareg!

    Africa STILL has slaves, every day of life!
    and I-Tuareg be de one who does ketch dem, and sell dem! -cheap.

    Me on my camel, in de sandy Sahara, where nobody don’t look.
    My Tuareg people and three other tribes of dead-black peeples an dem..still enslaving stupid black people, and selling dem.

    Good money, bwoy!
    Floating an IPO nex week, sar!

    Young Hutchinson is SO amusing!

  3. Anonymous

    As Pogo pointed out, it was the white British who actually did something about abolishing slavery.
    In view of that, one would think the Barbados people would erect a statue in Wm.Wilberforce’s honour,
    on a traffic roundabout named the William Wilberforce Roundabout, complete with a dedication ceremony.

    But no, instead we have a MOST-comical statue staring at TriMart, dripping in emotive chains, dressed in a short pants from S.Y.Adam in Swan Street….serving what purpose?
    TO enlighten drivers with something humorous as we endure the traffic conditions?

  4. John

    I heard Trevor Marshall on TV in February speak of Olaudah Equiano and how he was kidnapped and sold into slavery.

    My immediate reaction was that the deed was done by white Europeans. However, I learnt a while ago to take most of what I am told with a pinch of salt, in the case of slavery, a tablespoon of salt.

    My first impressions were totally incorrect. In fact he was kidnapped by other Africans, along with his sister and took sometime to get to the coast where he encountered white Europeans for the first time.

    He never saw his sister again.

    I’ll look for the passage in his book when I get home tonight and recheck what I read.

    Funnily enough, Trevor Marshall and Ikael were on the same program on TV.

  5. I got a good laugh when the nationnews reported Mr. Tafari telling some school children to be carefull what they put in their brains. đŸ˜€

  6. Bajanboy

    Doesn’t the Nation vet what its contributors write? Or do they assume that whatever a quasi-academic writes must be intellectually sound and historically factual.

  7. “As Pogo pointed out, it was the white British who actually did something about abolishing slavery”

    I would add that since they benefitted most from it, it is only appropriate that they started the moves to end it. Ha! the good ole Brits! what would Africa do without them

    “Slavery is dead as an institution in Western Civilization largely to the efforts of white Christians like William Willbourforce and his contemporaries ……”

    could that possibly be the language of a”negocrat”. I don’t know, please do tell me. My ancestors were probably capturing their brothers and selling them out as slaves, (something which continues in more forms than you realize) to this day


  8. Dr Ikeal Tafari, the holder of a bonafide PhD from UWI, is indeed entitled to his views, but has no right to propogate lies as fact when he is our Government’s paid advocate for our African heritage.

    He does not appear to be the right person for the job.

  9. Anonymous

    Which of the history-benders IS??

  10. Jerome Hinds

    Ikael Tafari still believes that because he was given Commissiong’s ” pick ” he must CONTRADICT everything that is Commissiong….!!!

    Commissiong WOULD have never UTTERED such about Africa/Africans….!!!

  11. Maat

    ‘Ghana leads the way again in yet another critical area. The government, through its Joseph Project, has issued an official apology on behalf of Africans on the continent to Blacks in the Diaspora for the role that the foreparents of the former played centuries ago in selling their fellow Africans into captivity. ‘

    The above caption is a part of the article by Ikael that is published in the nation. I take it that this indicates that he is aware that Africans did play a significant role in the overall process of transatlantic slavery. This segment may seem confusing, however their is a concept that captivity is different to slavery. A person can be held as a captive, such as a prisoner of war (or as Bush likes to call it ‘enemy combatant’), or in the belly of a ship on the way to the Caribbean or America, however they only become a slave when they start to work with little or no say in their terms of work or the conditions under which they labour. This is further compounded when they are not paid or are forced, often through violence or fear to continue to work. This latter description applies as much to many of us here and now as it did to those slaves of 300 years ago. How many of us love our work and would rather be doing this work than something else?
    How many of us reduce our life expectancy due to working in unsafe and unhealthy environments? HOW MANY OF US DO THIS BECAUSE WE FEAR the indoctrinated perception of failure, or losing the trappings that are considered signs of success.
    The British or American concept of freedom (the abolition of slavery) may be believed by those that are still slaves. Slaves need to free themselves and determine what they consider to be freedom. When the choice that we are offered is; work for us for what we are willing to pay and under whatever conditions we decide are fitting or (or what?) then that is not choice, that is not freedom


  12. Devil's Advocate!!

    As Robert Nesta Marley once said, ‘if I was educated ,I would be a damn fool.’

  13. Devil's Advocate!!

    Pogo :

    What a load of crap!!!

    it was the white guys in Britian and later the United States who fought long and hard ???

    Who was the last country to say aparthied was wrong?

    Who built the churches (anglican) in this country??

    I dont agree with Tafari but you are just as ignorant to history as he is.

  14. Ras.

    And to say Tafari must have been smoking some of the herb goes to show the ignorance of BFP.
    Why smoking of herb has to be the reason for his ignorance?

    Bob Marley smoked herb ,yet he wrote some of the most moving and prophetic songs in reggae.

    Go check the history of this herb and you will see that it was made illegal by one ambitious senator from the USA,years ago, with false reports similliar to the ones Colin Powell shared with us.

    If you want to discredit Tafari,please do it without using the ‘weed’ as a reason for his ignorance.

    Weed dont do s**t to anyone .

    Hello Ras

    THAT is the big lie. Weed makes one lazy. Weed also impairs judgement in the operation of machinery and autos.

    … and it makes people say bad words, obviously!

  15. herefordian

    Jewish merchants buying Africans from Muslim slave traders and selling them on to Christian plantation owners – an early example of the three major religions working in harmony? If there is a God my bet is that she’s an Atheist

  16. Free Cannabis.

    Weed does NOT make one lazy, not any more than simply living in the sleepy hot Caribbean makes one lazy – you are a victim of pro-Alcohol,Inc. anti-‘drug’ brainwashing, in that Cannabis must be kept suppressed for fear of it causing Alcohol’s collapse: the war on drugs has Sweet FA to do with health or ambition, but a lot more to do with protecting a foul-tasting but entrenched DRUG(fer real!) from competitor products which have NO HANGOVER.

  17. Anonymous

    Sure sure captivity…not slavery…sure sure.

    Do you know how many people are still enslaved in the world today? Even by “their own people.”

    I am not a racist but I do confess to being a nationalist. I am very concerned that there are no references or validation when Dr. Tafari publishes… I don’t want my people led astray.

    To Dr. Tafari – “As a man thinkith in his heart, so is he.” -James Allen

    Man’s thought has a significant role to play in controling his conditions.

  18. Anonymous

    Dr. Tafari -please don’t embed these inaccuracies in the hearts of people in Barbados. You will be accountable for this slavery of the mind you are creating in our youth.

    sorry -(this should have been a part of the previous post)

  19. BFP- another insert to a comment without attribution!

    “RAS – March 14, 2007, 4.28 am”
    “Hello, Ras- THAT is a big lie. Weed makes one lazy…..etc”

    Who inserted this, and why is no name (or BFP) shown to make this clear? Is that you again, George?

  20. Picky Knickers


    Give it a rest. It’s a blog. Freeform syntax, grammar and all the rest rule here. Your comments may be academically correct, but are tiresome.

  21. rose

    the doc is right keep on educating us you may be crucified for doing so.

  22. Straight talk

    Is O$A getting more and more pissed as his speech comes to its conclusion?
    I’ll drink to that.

  23. Straight talk

    Why is my post awaiting moderation?
    It is a legitimate observation.

  24. Straight talk

    Is O$A getting more and more inebriated as his speech comes to its conclusion?
    I’ll drink to that.

  25. Patrick Porter

    Hey man I got a question for all of you, how come Dr. Tafari look white. I don’t know him, but he looks like a white man to me

  26. Straight talk

    Search past posts!
    The man is an impostor with an agenda.

  27. CaribDigita@Yahoo.com

    Sorry to change the topic a tiny bit. But there was an article in the Nation saying that Barbados was going to celebrate the Trans-Atlantic slave trade in a big way including having some Barbadians participate in the National Geograpic a.k.a. “Genographic” study.

    Found at: http://www.genographic.com/

    I purchased a kit a few months back but I’ve just yet to sit down and pick a time when I’d take the test. I’m just curious has Anyone else planned/or have done one???

    They say you have to pick mother or fathers side of your DNA. My only thought is if I pic fathers side what am I going to do if it turns up in Europe like many othat blacks have found?

  28. Kathy

    I am very skeptical of Dr. Tafari’s credentials, motives, and mental health, but I support his right to call himself African if he wants. He should not be discriminated against just because he is white to look at. If he identifies with Africa in his heart and soul that should transcend colour. But he should try to get his facts straight – that would definitely improve his credibility.

  29. victor

    Until Britain announced that its government held that slavery was illegal it was the first time in human history that slavery had ever been “abolished”. As contributors have pointed out, it existed all over the world throughout history until then, as an acceptable way of life. When a person is sold and bought forever, they are a slave, disposable by whoever and whenever. It’s not the same as indentured labour. Is that Ikael Tafari a real employee of the Barbados govt. or is he just in charge of some kind of NGO? Nobody with a brain can be that ignorant so if the taxpayers of Barbados are paying his salary something funny is going on. Bajans are great at complaining. Let’s complain this idiot into oblivion.

  30. Picky Knickers- You miss the point. This is not about academically or grammatically correct. That would be tiresome, I agree.

    A while back, before you joined this site apparently, George (of BFP) told a fellow blogger to “get his brain in gear” when he mistakenly thought a comment had been made by BFP, when in fact it was made by the commenter below a line of asterisks. That is why George should follow the proper procedure to avoid such mishaps.

  31. Rumplestilskin

    Jeez. Here we go agin. Insteada focusinga on tha futureah, we be entreenching our mindsah in slavery, by propagatingah useless arguments.

    Let us focus on the future, ‘release our minds from mental slavery’, focus on poverty,. freedoms, true education and learning, including spiritual and scientific, not dig into negativity.

    The past is just that, the past. Yes, it happened, but to move forward you have to look up the road, not back down.

    Though it suits some to re-write the past for their own agendas.

    Today a whole Nation, black and white, is being torn apart by one man’s hatred and bitterness.

    Tearing down in his mind is more important than changing the status quo.

    Yet, Tafari can find it more important to spend time on the century old past and not address the abberation that is Zimbabwe today.

    Stay in the chains then, fight your own internal battles
    Leave the reality to those who are free
    To those who can see
    To those who can cope and solve the indignity

    Bah humbug

  32. Wow, reading these posts makes me realize how truly backward and colonial some people still are. The point the doctor was making was that so-called “African Slavery” was totally diferent in nature to chattel or European slavery. In Tribal conflicts prisoners of war were often taken, they were often forced to work and serve their captures, however after a certain time they were intergrated into their new society, often marrying into the family that had taken them, and on several rare ocassions actually moving up the social ladder to become cheif and leader of their new tribe. With the advent of European incursion in to the continent these prisoners of war were sold to the Europeans and began a form of slavery where they were not even considered full human beings and had no chance for social mobility, totally different.
    The trans atlantic slave trade was a disaster 100 the size of the holocost, in terms of lives lost, cultures destroyed, The African continent ravaged, to suggest that we should errect statues to honour Whites who were against the system that gave them wealth and domination over the world is not only offensive it is also racist. NO ONE WOULD SUGGEST TO JEWS THAT THEY SHOULD BUILD STATUES TO HONOUR GERMANS AGAINST HITLER, AND THEY SHOULD STOP COMPLAING ABOUT THE HOLOCOST BECAUSR IT WAS A LONG TIME AGO.

  33. RUMPIG

    And this coming from a WHITE MAN (Michael Hutchinson) whose ancestors were part of the slave trade.
    What dope can to do you head !!! You ever see a BLUE EYED African.

  34. J. Payne

    Africa and South Asia still have lots of slavery. And if Barbados doesn’t want to be recolonised itself it should learn from this financial meltdown and start getting support within the group of 77 to disband the whole World Trade Organisation. It must goo too. It was the cause of all these problems. It seeks to give rich people access to everything and make the poor compete against the rich for the same resources. Who do you expect to win a battle like that between poor and rich?