Ricky Trooper stands with Babsy Grange
Outspoken dancehall selector, and diehard People's National Party (PNP) supporter, Ricky Trooper, has come out in staunch defence of Entertainment Minister Olivia 'Babsy' Grange, whose ministry is under the microscope over the findings of an audit report on the operations of the Jamaica Cultural Development Commission (JCDC).
In a lengthy social media address, drenched with phrases like "low her" and "oonu fi gweh," Trooper flung his full support behind Grange, who represents the governing Jamaica Labour Party. He told THE STAR that he was motivated to speak his mind, because "none of dem never fight fi dancehall music like Babsy Grange" and also said that he refused to play politics with the music and watch people tarnish her name.
"Look at this, 99 per cent of all artiste and sound system used to support the PNP and a dem bring in the Noise Abatement Act and a kill off the music. Lots of people get dem sound system mash up and tek way by police and we still support PNP. A PNP blood run through mi, but when it come to culture and dancehall, a Babsy Grange blood run through mi," he said.
Totally unapologetic, Ricky Trooper called out his own party and threw a bit more than just shade at the current internal squabbles and turmoil, even as he bashed "the PNP supporters inside JCDC", who he says have been leaking information to the media.
"Me as a PNP get to find out that if you want something to be wrecked, give it to the PNP. Dem mash up dem own a party and now a come gwaan like dem want come mash up our dancehall party. Dem lose the election so the PNP workers at JCDC dem fi just clutch and know seh a it dat, but no, dem want stir up things. Miss Grange fight and mek reggae music get recognition at UNESCO and if she tek anything, she a put it inna the music," he told THE STAR.
He added hastily, "I'm not saying that transparency must not be there. But dem not even allowing the lady to have her say and tell di people what a gwaan."
'Babsy a fight fi we'
In the social media video, Trooper said, "when it come to dancehall and reggae music ... Babsy Grange a di only smaddy who a fight fi we. Damian Crawford, yuh do yuh lickle ting yes. Mek we can bring in equipment. Hold yuh lickle props Damian Crawford."
Trooper said that he did the video last week, and it has been making the rounds.
"People a call me from England, Timbuktu, all over the world, and the thing is that everyone is in agreement. From ancient come right down, this lady Babsy Grange has been there. From marching bands days, a she we see a represent for the culture. Oonu fi guh weh and low her!" Trooper said.
Grange is due is to address the findings of the damning audit report, which highlighted "red flags" and "discrepancies", at the JCDC.