It is in 1962 that Michael Manley, head of the Peoples National Party in Jamaica, has ambitions for the job of Prime Minister of Jamaica. A self-described “man of the people,” Manley begins courting blacks, to include Rastafarians. Manley convenes a meeting with the elders in the Judah Coptic Theocracy House of Rastafari and makes a trip to Ethiopia with plans to meet with Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie I. Upon his return to Jamaica, Manley claims to have been given a special “rod,” by the Emperor and Rasta god. He brandishes this “rod of correction” at political rallies and wows the attendees. He has seemingly been transformed into a modern day Joshua, with his rod of correction pointed directly at his rival Pharoah, Jamaican Prime Minister Hugh Shearer. Joshua promised to lead the people to the Promised Land, a new Jerusalem, if elected. Bob and Rita Marley fell under his spell, repeating his rhetoric to all who would listen, a few who wouldn’t. They even join him on the campaign trail, the Wailers performing for the impatient crowds who brave the scorching heat to hear Joshua’s promise of freedom from poverty and a new place in society for black Jamaicans.
In 1975, singer Wally Brown pens this request for Manley to return the rod to Selassie. The single was produced by Winston Edwards for the Magnet label.