Minister of National Security Fitzgerald Hinds said a childhood friend whom he described as his "younger brother" died of complications of covid19 on Sunday night.
On his Facebook page Hinds posted that his friend, whom he named only as "B," complained of feeling unwell and planned to visit a doctor on Monday.
But there was a fire near his friend's home and the smoke made it hard for him to breathe.
"He was administered mouth-to-mouth resuscitation and chest-thumping; but by the time the ambulance arrived, he was gone," Hinds wrote on Monday afternoon.
He also said his friend had been misled by inaccurate information circulating online and had refused to accept the covid19 vaccine.
Hinds said if his friend had accepted the vaccine "he would have been alive today."
"Some would argue that it did not have to be that way, but he was one of the many well-intentioned and well-meaning, but misguided and misled persons of the world, who refused to take the vaccine after reading 'the experts' on social media.
"He was one of those who was known for uninformed and nice-sounding commentary about 'vaccines being designed to alter your DNA and kill black people!'
"These are the thoughts of a genuinely loving big brother loaded with great advice, to those of us who need it."
Hinds sent his condolences to B's family, whom he said he had known all his life.
He described "B" as "self-opinionated, fun-loving, deeply cultural, and a sports enthusiast." He added: "Never in nothing criminal! Different, but holding on to the values, as taught by a pair of serious parents. (He) held my hand as a younger brother in the hood."
A number of readers misunderstood Hinds's post because he referred to "B" throughout as his "brother," and in a later post clarified what he called a "horrific misunderstanding" by saying "B" was his "brother from a different mother."