Out of the Colonial Caribbean
The Pankhurst Connection
In 1956, the last year of its publication, Sylvia Pankhurst's newspaper, the New Times and Ethiopia News, gained notoriety in Jamaica. Here is a letter from the colonial office in London sent to Governor of Jamaica, Sir Hugh Foot, concerning fears voiced by the Custos of St James parish, Francis M. Kerr-Jarrett. Jarrett had reported to the Governor that Sylvia's newspaper, New Times and Ethiopia News, was radicalising a "sect" who called themselves the "Rastafari":
Some Rastafari at the time believed Sylvia Pankhurst to be a member of Emperor Haile Selassie I's court due to the in-depth information transmitted through the newspaper. While Sylvia never occupied such a position, it is true that she had the ear of the Emperor during his residence at Fairfield. In 1956, the year of the controversy presented in this letter, she migrated to Ethiopia for good at the invitation of the Emperor.