BIRMINGHAM, AL (WBRC) - The national office of the NAACP has suspended Metro Birmingham Branch President Hezekiah Jackson from his job and the organization pending an investigation into allegations he took money to advise homeowners not to have their soil tested by the Environmental Protection Agency.
Jackson was notified of his suspension in a letter on September 7.
In a statement released by the NAACP on Wednesday, the organization announced the suspension of Jackson pending the investigation.
The organization is investigating claims that Jackson advised homeowners not to have their soil tested by the EPA to check for potentially deadly toxins. They also say he may have accepted cash payments for engaging in that activity.
Jackson released the following statement on Wednesday evening in response to the claims:
“After 20 years as a Black openly gay president of the Metro Birmingham NAACP and Chief Volunteer Officer, I have had to navigate the hostile waters of Sexual Orientation Discrimination for most of my life. I welcome the opportunity for a full hearing on this matter for which I expect to be fully exonerated. No one has produced any proof of my emphatically saying to anyone “DO NOT HAVE YOUR SOIL TESTED” or me being compensated in cash or otherwise to which I testified under oath before the Grand Jury in July, 2017. Once I receive the notice I will answer and allow the due process to run it’s course; however, in the meantime I will remain at 1520 4th Ave. No. Birmingham, Alabama (former home to the NAACP) as my launching location for my new organization “Better Environment and Mo Justice” and to complete my memoirs, “To Kill the Bold Black Gay Boi” (A TELL ALL). I will turn my attention to unimpeded empowerment for myself and my people. I am at perfect peace and thank all those who have stood with me over the years and those who continue to do so.”
Jackson also says he has not received a letter or any notification from the NAACP regarding his suspension.
“I testified under oath at the grand jury in July 2017 that was not the case in both instances and I stand by that. My position is clear, if the federal government decided that my explanation was satisfactory, then whom else can I be challenged by?” said Jackson on Wednesday night.