Carnival Minister Paul Chet Greene has said he did not have a “homophobic moment” when he ordered rainbow coloured banners to be removed from the streets of St. John’s.
The minister told ZDK that he learned on Sunday that the banners were reflecting “another kind of parade.”
“I want to be very clear in stating that Antigua and Barbuda’s carnival is not an extension and must not be a reflection of any other carnival anywhere in the world.”
Greene blamed the contractor who he did not name, for “an irresponsible act.”
He said the individual was asked to design the decorations “consistent with national colours.”
“It was a most insensitive act on his part,” Greene added.
The minister also apologized to the public and in particular those who wrote him about the controversial decorations.
He said new decorations will soon be installed.
The colours used in the banners have been linked to members of the Lesbian Gay Bi-sexual and Transgender community.
They were removed yesterday after popular radio personality Percival Simon brought public concern over their placement to the media.
LGBT activist Tasheka Lavann says the decision by the government to remove the decorations because they resemble the gay-pride flag, demonstrates how deeply rooted homophobia is in Antigua and Barbuda.