“Do something good for the country…and they still find a way to be negative smh (shaking my head) Trinidadians.”
This was the last tweet from Commonwealth Games gold medallist Michelle-Lee Ahye’s official Twitter account before she disabled it yesterday, following an article in yesterday’s T&T Guardian highlighting the fact that photos from her private Instagram account and that of her partner were being shared online as part of an apparent smear campaign. Ahye also deleted her Facebook account yesterday. She also did not respond to private messages sent on Twitter by the T&T Guardian seeking comment on the issue.
A photo of Ahye and her partner in a compromising position was not published by the T&T Guardian in its article addressing the situation. That photo was taken from the private Instagram account of Chelsea Renee Ahye. The username on that account is mrskinglee 10.6. That account was also shut down yesterday.
Ahye’s Instagram account with the username kinglee10.6 remained private.
Citizens yesterday threw their support behind Ahye yesterday as they took the T&T Guardian to task for its reporting of the story.
Social media was filled with persons giving their opinion on the situation.
One of Ahye’s national sprinting colleagues, Machel Cedenio, took to his Twitter account to advise Ahye not to be distracted by the situation.
“Keep your head above the water they trying to distract and mislead the nation from the bigger picture!!”
Ahye is currently in Texas focused on her athletics with the Diamond League series scheduled to start soon.
Head of the T&T Olympic Committee (TTOC) Brian Lewis also reminded Ahye to believe in herself and stay focused.
“Believe in yourself...stay focused....To thine own self be true. Dream big. Achieve big!”
The T&T Guardian’s Facebook post depicting yesterday’s front page was filled with comments from readers supporting Ahye.
Ariel Christiana Martin wrote: “What is hurtful is that this affected her to the point of her taking down her twitter and fb and locking her ig...shameful that this is how a GOLD MEDALIST is treated.”
Gale CB said Ahye’s personal choices were no one’s business and wrote: “Whatever choices this young lady makes in her personal life is no one’s business. She did better than all the ppl who wants to talk her bad! Keep shining my dear. You are a star and let nobody tell you differently. Shame on Guardian Newspapers!!!”
Richard Nigel Ramkissoon questioned when judging people on such choices would stop.
“When will we stop judging people based on these things,” Ramkissoon wrote.
This was a sentiment that was echoed throughout many of the posts.
Taken Tee Soo wrote: “What?? Really?? It’s 2018!! Her personal life is just that Personal!! Still proud of her achievement!!”
Meanwhile, two women representing the LGBTQI community yesterday maintained the position that Ahye’s personal life was a “non-story.”
Coalition Advocating for Inclusion of Sexual Orientation (CAISO) board member Angelique Nixon questioned why the T&T Guardian had to publish Ahye’s “personal business? Why is it a story?”
Nixon said the article had no merit and only created unnecessary sensationalism.
“I don’t think it was fair. It was not a story worth publishing.”
Attorney Leah Thompson also echoed a statement by CAISO executive director of CAISO Colin Robinson that the issue of Ahye and her partner was a non-story.