St Vincent PM suffers blow to the head amid health bill protests

Prime Minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines Dr Ralph Gonsalves

Prime Minister of St Vincent and the Grenadines Dr Ralph Gonsalves had to receive treatment after receiving a blow to the head during protests on Thursday.

Initial reports indicate he was hit in the head by an object thrown by a demonstrator who was among those protesting proposed changes to the Public Health Act that would remove the word “voluntary” from a section of the law that speaks to vaccination against an illness that triggers the declaration of a public health emergency, such as COVID-19.

The prime minister was on his way back to Parliament, where the amendments were scheduled to be debated on Thursday, when the incident occurred.

A video circulating on social media shows blood to the right side of his head as he is rushed from the area.

Shouts of “shield, shield” could be heard as Prime Minister Gonsalves was covered by security forces after being hit.