David Thompson Comes Out Swinging

david_thompson.jpgTo those political pundits who have determined that Leader of the Opposition David Thompson is too much of a choir boy for the hurly burly of politics got a rude awakening at the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) last night at Haggatt Hall. In a 90 minute presentation, David Thompson betrayed a high level of rascality when he ruthlessly prosecuted a case of corruption against Prime Minister Owen Arthur and his government. At the end on it all, David Thompson may have quelled all the doubts about his leadership caused by the 1994 Queens Park IMF Affair. He gave the stunned crowd the evidence which surrounds the much discussed cheque donation which was deposited to Arthur’s personal account. Again and again, the crowd was bombarded with video presentation of cheques and documents projected on the two big screens to support his charge. The high level of financial contributions by the former Caribbean Commercial Bank to Arthur headed by Mariano Browne at the time (Former Chairman of Enterprise Growth Fund) and the BLP during the 2003 general election was mind blowing. Additionally, the reference to the 4.25% commission demanded in the Eastern Lottery Gambling deal i.e. Barbados Cricket Association lottery which was pocketed by a high ranking government official has thickened the plot. He also introduced the name Hallam Nichols as the man who has been pocketing millions in commissions because of all the government business directed his way. Thompson made the point that Hallam Nichols and the Prime Minister are very close friends. The close friendship was illustrated when Nichols was invited to Arthur’s private wedding over Ministers in Arthur’s cabinet.

the much discussed cheque donation which was deposited to Arthur’s personal account.

The ‘cheque’ which was deposited by Arthur to his personal account and Thompson’s expose of the ‘flyover’ project may have been the performance to date to firmly move the scales in favour of his party.

Bank Statement

To all those present who heard the case leveled by Thompson against Arthur and the BLP, the verdict is GUILTY as charged.

150 thoughts on “David Thompson Comes Out Swinging

  1. The bombshell

    11.7M per kilometre (1000 metres)
    = 1.17 M per 100 metres
    = 117,000 per metre

    Since we already had 2 lanes and we now have 4, if the width of the lane = 10 feet per lane we are payin $117,000 for each 20 square metres of pavement.

    20 square metres is an area 4.5 metres x 4.5 metres (13.5 feet x 13.5 feet)

    How would you feel if it cost 117,000 to pave your bedroom?

  2. Now hush while the Prime Minister talks about how the (desperate DLP) thugs attacked two BLP supporters with cutlasses today in Ashton Hall.

  3. My firs post it is sad but the BLP is going to win this election with ease most bajans dont listen to the facts once they can pay the bills and eat food they are good to go and the BLP has been great in being able to convince people that the DEMS cannot lead

  4. ANKH // January 10, 2008 at 10:01 pm

    My firs post it is sad but the BLP is going to win this election with ease most bajans dont listen to the facts once they can pay the bills and eat food they are good to go and the BLP has been great in being able to convince people that the DEMS cannot lead

    You have finally come out and said what I have picked up from the vibes all around me in recent days.

    If I can EAT FOOD and PAY MY BILLS why the hell should I change? Change to what? STARVATION and SUFFERATION?

    Me? I like muh damn belly too much.

    B F P E

  5. And furthermore

    13.5 x 13.5 feet = 182.25 square feet

    At 117,000 that is $642.00 per square foot

    You build a house, with plumbing, roof, contractor margins of 25% for 250 per square foot

    How bedding and paving a road could be almost three times to build a house?

  6. Owen talking about about Undene Whittaker’s $21.60 bounced cheque to Kentucky Fried Chicken.

    Bajans ain’t fools. They will take the DLP money and vote for whoever they want, some may not even vote at all.

    Owen says Wickham is being sued!

  7. And furthermore

    How it cold be that this three times cost of 117,000 per metre has happened 10,000 times? Each metre at $117,000 is only one of the 10,000 metres.

    All of Barbados should now understand and remember how many houses for poor people could have built with all that money that gone offshore and disappear. And how the water could be better. And how the hospital could have been better. And many more things.

    No forensic can ever trace that. It gone. And more to go.

  8. The Advocate gave a more comprehenisve report of Haggatt Hall meet than the Nation:

    Web Posted – Thu Jan 10 2008
    Opposition Leader David Thompson dropped his bombshell last night, seeking to detonate the Owen Arthur administration for more than $1 billion in cost overruns, with a bill of more than $140 million for the highway expansion project.

    There was silence in Haggatt Hall in the area of the Bussa Roundabout, a stretch of road where the highway expansion project covers, as an explosive Thompson revealed statistic after statistic to the thousands gathered for the DLP mass meeting.

    Thompson raised the stakes in the General Election campaign by calling on the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) administration to address the cost overrun issue before Election Day, especially the astronomical rise in the cost of the ABC Road widening project over the past few years.

    Ar med with powerpoint presentations and documents, the DLP Leader particularly referred to a document which was entitled Barbados Road Network Infrastructure Improvement Project, which was prepared by the technical officers in the Ministry of Public Work s and Transport about the expansion of the ABC Highway.

    Its a report on construction costs assessment of Section II Steel overpass Bridges. I wish tonight to make this a document of this meeting and to make clear that it is from this document that I ha ve drawn a significant amount of the info. I also leaned very heavily on a cadre of professional patriots who simply could take no more abuse by the political directorate of this country, he said.

    Thompson expressed concerns over the way in which the selection of the contractors of the project was handled. Proposals were submitted to the Ministry of Public Works and were in the process of being evaluated, when, even before the selection of a consultant was ratified by Cabinet, a mystery firm calle d 3S was brought into the picture through local connections. 3S, of which very little was and still is known, merely presented a graphic presentation of a flyover scheme and all normal and accepted procedures went through the window. This video or graphic p resentation was never properly scrutinised by engineers in the Ministry of Public Works. Nevertheless, the Government soon announced that it was entering into a BOLT (Build, Operate, Lease, Transfer) agreement to have eight flyovers constructed before the final of Cricket World Cup. The proposals that were invited for road widening by local consultants were suddenly abandoned, he added.

    Government was then accused of failing to show due diligence with regards to the way in which the cost of the proje ct continued to skyrocket.

    So in January 2006, Public Works wrote to several local consulting firms requesting a BOLT proposal for road widening and flyovers. A BOLT proposal would normally require more than three months to prepare. It requires the c ons ultant to locate financiers who would be willing to inject more than $100 million into a project of that magnitude. Many other considerations are necessary for the proposal, such as repayment schedules, how the lease would be operated and agreement of con tractors to participate in the team effort, he said.

    It was also stated that the cost of the project continued to expand.

    Nevertheless, the Owen Arthur administration disregarded its duty for due diligence. Due diligence means an examination of the b ona fides of the company. This should always be part of the legal governmental framework. The public of Barbados was not apprised of what was going on, but in July of 2006, 3S started the construction based on road widening in the sum of BDS$40 232 432 an d eight flyovers for BDS$$79 517 659 which gave an overall sum of $119 750 000. Thompson charged that no binding agreement was in place for the exercise.

    Out of the figures I quoted for the combination of road widening and flyovers, the portio n for r oad widening started at $40 232 432 jumped to $70 231 220.23 by cabinet decision of May 6, 2006 and amazingly has now jumped at December 2007 to a staggering $117 000 000.00 for widening only. This is an increase of an astronomical $46 768 780.7 7 on the May, 2006 revised cost and a more than $75 million increase on the original price. And note: up to December 2007 when general elections were called, there was still no binding contract in place, he added.

    Details were given of a decision to inc rease the cost of the project.

    This whole project started merely with an MOU (Memorandum of Understanding). You imagine a project at its initial estimate of $119 000 000 could start without any specifications, Bill of Quantities, working drawings or contract? But that is not the worst! … from an original understanding, not a contract, of a figure of $119 750 000 in November 2005, Cabinet on 6th May, 2006, just prior to World Cup, when he was considering calling the election, agreed that construction would be gin on 24th July, 2006 at a new price of $143 614 460.23 for road widening and eight flyovers.

    The charge was also made that the taxpayers continued to foot the bill for the highway when the cost should not have been so high.

    We have enginee rs as mem bers of the Democratic Labour Party and I have spoken to them as well as other private sector engineers. They all unanimously agreed that the Road Widening of the ABC Highway does not involve house relocations, setting back of fences, repairs to houses, A lso, the shaping of the road is already determined. In other words, the road widening is a simpler operation than say Highway 2A. Yet, this road widening involves some five kilometres. In all fairness they are adding two lanes, so technically t he total le ngth would be 10 kilometres. Therefore you the taxpayers are being asked to pay $11.7 million dollars for each kilometre of road that is merely being added to an existing road, he said. (DB)Ç=

    Source: http://www.barbadosadvocate.com/NewViewNewsleft.cfm?Record=34245

  9. Oh B>F>P>E< A**e*

    Congratulations – Your Blp Manifesto has been nominated for the pulitzer prize for fiction – Check BFP

  10. I am listening to the PM giving what seems to be simple answers to issues being aired.

    What I cant understand is why could not not these answers been given before?

    Why cant the leaders discuss with the people what they are doing all along.

    Dont we decide whatwe are doing with our wives or fellow church members or what ever social group in which we associate.

  11. I have always taken pride in the perception that Barbados was not remotely as corrupt, and our people not nearly as corruptible, as our Caribbean neighbours. A few months ago however I expressed the concern to a Caribbean friend that we were rapidly surpassing other islands in this sphere. Last night’s meeting served to cement this perspective. But it should have done more than that – it should have (for all but those in an advanced state of moral or mental decay) brought home the sober reality that it is the pervasiveness of this corruption that has created the most acute threat to our democracy.

    It is not so much a tyrannical Owen Arthur that threatens this democracy, rather it is the fear of consequences of his corrupt deeds that render him unable to tolerate the thought of losing. It is the fear of not landing that TV licence that has turned the Nation into a sham of a paper (never thought I would see the day when the Advocate, whose owner is a longstanding BLP supporter, being fairer than the “people’s paper” to the Dems). It is the fear of irrelevance (not being included) that has rendered our academics and churchmen silent. It is the fear of losing their likkle pick that has turned our previously outspoken activists into Owen choirboys (Nothing saddens me more than our “ambasador” Gabby, creator of classic protests songs such as “Boots”, “Jack”, ” T”, and “Stinging Bees” reduced to the sycophantic jingles that he now sprouts.)

  12. Bussa Goddard,

    It is the fear of losing their likkle pick that has turned our previously outspoken activists into Owen choirboys (Nothing saddens me more than our “ambasador” Gabby, creator of classic protests songs such as “Boots”, “Jack”, ” T”, and “Stinging Bees” reduced to the sycophantic jingles that he now sprouts.)

    Gabby “ambasador” post is a clear case of POLITICS of INCLUSION in the BLP. Mr. Peter Wickham knows what he talk and preaches.

  13. Another bombshell
    The 117,000 per meter for 10k is what could put ‘moving with Owen” on the air on every station 24/7. You know how much that cosyt? We paying for the campaign.

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  15. B F P E // January 10, 2008 at 10:10 pm

    Owen talking about about Undene Whittaker’s $21.60 bounced cheque to Kentucky Fried Chicken.

    I was at the Wildey meeting this evening and heard the BLP leader make mention of the said cheque. How petty can one get?????

    Anywayz, has anyone other than myself and an observant few realised that Ms Whittaker’s cheque was written in 2002….when the BLP was in power?

    Times were hard even then. They are harder now.

    Why let this trend continue? WE the people of Barbados have a choice to make!!!

  16. Owen said tonite that before Thompson tell the ppl about what the DLP will do for them, he calling meetings about ‘cost overruns and a lotta foolishness’.

    Now wtf!!!! Since when my hard earned money that getting wasted/stolen is ‘foolishness’?

  17. I suppose the ppl with the cutlasses had the letter D.L.P tattooed pun dem face…..ya iggrant fool!

    I heard that tonite too and I sympathised with the BLP for playing that card.

    Sending ppl to attack their own!

    Tsk tsk….how far will they go?

  18. Looks like Mascoll is cutting down everything Thompson said last night.


    All the graphs and the plans for the highway and the flyovers are on the screen. The FACTS (they look very genuine to an ordinary voter like me) are being put out and Thompson is being made to look like a clown.

    Poor Thompson. Mascoll must be relishing this moment of revenge.

    Don’t be fooled, its interesting that only now these drawings are being shown to the public. I would of thought this presentation would have been more appropriate before the project started, so as to inform Barbadians . It looks like this was put together sometime today, in hurry I might add, so as to respond to David Thompson stinging expose at Bussa Roundabout last night. Further more these are pretty drawings and not drawings you would use for constuction purposes especially on a project of this magnitude.

    It would be inconceivable for a project this big to start without drawings, almost impossible. That is probally why the work being done on the highway is so sporadic and so disjointed in execution. But in my experience I have seen similar actions from so called prominent persons in this country, not having the necessary information to carry out works in a correct and efficient manner.
    I have many other concerns with the highway projects but I will deal with them another time.

    Lets know when the engineering drawings were done and show them to the public.

    Show us the bill of quanties that would have to obtained througth a comprehensive set of architectural and engineering drawings.

    Show the contract if any, that was agreed to and signed by the principal parties.

    It would be interesting if when this agreement was entred into was the subject of retention ever mentioned.



  19. Thompson won the cost overrun round. I dont understand co leader Mascoll, biter Mia and Glyne Clarke explanations. They did a poor job in trying to refute Thompson’s clear and lucid charges. In fact Bizzy Williams who is Arthur’s mouthpiece on highways and flyovers is admitting Thompson is correct but Bizzy the mongrel trying to pass the buck and blame poor defenseless civil servants. Arthur must go. We need a change

  20. Arthur said:
    (Advocate Online, Jan 11)

    “You have to ask yourself what is going to happen to Barbados politics if companies cannot feel confident of giving a little donation to pay for the posters and to pay for the manifestos and to pay for the ads and to pay for all this without their names being held up for disrepute in the public domain, he also stressed. ”

    Is this the same Owen Arthur that is notorious for calling people’s name and exposing their private business in Parliament?

    Is he saying that the total of $750,000 referred to by Thompson is “a little donation”?

    At any rate, the accusation was aimed at Mariano Browne, not the bank.

  21. The Nation 5th Dec. 2005

    On October 12, Minister of Public Works Gline Clarke announced the memorandum of agreement had been signed and the flyovers were expected to be completed by January 2007.

    A few days after he said they were prepared to go ahead with flyovers based on the information and recommendations from the Traffic Management Committee and police.

    Clarke put the cost of construction of flyovers, widening of the highway and synchronisation of traffic lights at around $120 million.

    Got that Mia.

    Highway widening, flyovers and traffic lights – $120 million.

    No Phase 1, Phase 2 rubbish.

    Is your government totally incompetent or lying to us?

    It has to be one or the other.

  22. I Wid David & DEM!!! ,
    There was a time that Owen was also bouncing checques. People like David Shorey and Rodney Wilkinson used to help him out by buying drinks for him and lending him money. He should be the last to talk about somebody. I remember him crying onTV saying that he did not know how much longer he could continue

  23. Gline Clarke has always insisted that the project would go ahead regardless of objections raised.

    The government is still saying that the flyovers will be built, but does anyone know if they have obtained Town Planning Approval? Last I heard, 3S had scheduled a town hall meeting to discuss the project, which is a town planning requirement. The meeting was cancelled. The government is speaking and acting as if nothing will come out of the public consultation that could cause them to change their minds about the flyovers.

    This is ARROGANCE!

  24. I always heard it was easier to tell the truth, since you do not have to remember what was said before. When one has to do too much explaining “protesting too much”, look out!

    IT’S THE DEMS’ turn to drop a political bombshell.

    The Opposition Democratic Labour Party (DLP) has cancelled all meetings tonight except its national rally at which leader David Thompson has promised to reveal “some of the ammunition I have in storage” and which he was planning to use during the aborted live debates in the lead-up to next Tuesday’s general election.

    Titled Campaign Eye-opener One, this meeting will be held at Haggatt Hall, St Michael, near the Emancipation [Bussa] Roundabout. “Some people in this country may not like what I will have to say, but in the public’s interest I believe I have got to say what I know,” Thompson declared.

    It was only last Saturday night that the Barbados Labour Party hinted of a bombshell at its Bridgetown meeting when it accused the DLP of wanting to take Barbados into bed with Taiwan instead of the People’s Republic of China.

    Thompson said yesterday he would use the opportunity of a single, national political rally to reveal “the latest and most stunning example of governmental mismanagement and squandermania”.

    While not giving further insights into the precise nature of tonight’s “bombshell”, the DLP leader said the revelations involved the reckless spending of hundreds of millions of hard-earned taxpayers dollars in a “highly suspicious and certainly non-transparent manner”.

    “Mr Arthur has said this election is about leadership and the economic management of this country,” Thompson said.

    “I want Barbadians from all walks of life and of all partisan political persuasions to come to Bussa Roundabout tonight and determine for themselves whether Owen Arthur and his BLP Government are deserving of another term, given the hard, cold facts that I will make public at that meeting tonight.”

    “The moment I said I wanted a debate on governance, the BLP retreated from the idea of debates. I suspect the Prime Minister feared that I might have been onto something and he did everything humanly possible to pre-empt disclosure.

    Red herring

    “Mr Arthur came with this red herring issue of Taiwanese involvement in this campaign to detract persons from examining the real charges that have been levelled against him, dating back to 2003. The time has come for me to give chapter and verse on that entire episode that again involved some very questionable financial transactions.

    “This election is not about China or Taiwan. I repeat for the umpteenth time that this Democratic Labour Party has not benefited in any way from a single contribution from either China or Taiwan. This election is about governance and the manner in which we want as a people to be governed. I gave notice during the Hardwood debate that I would have been calling names such as the late Johnnie Cochran in my wrap-up to that debate.

    “I do not know if that was the reason for the sudden curtailment of debate, but after tomorrow night (tonight), I expect that the voters of Barbados will be in a position to answer that question for themselves,” he concluded.

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  27. Please you folks that have the chance of a lifetime to remove this scourge of the earth the thing called mottley for the political landscape of this island, to please do so in your most clinical and exacting way known to you by voting for a 100 % WOMAN in the person of PATRICIA INNISS and VOTE FOR A NEW BEGINNING AND A NEW WAY FORWARD.

  28. DE BUMBLE BEE // January 12, 2008 at 1:11 pm

    Not even the KING BEE….our beloved Owen Arthur putting any FAITH in this SWING back nonsense !

    The KING BEE accept that before the 20th December , 2007 the following remained CONSTANT :

    ** WE…… BEES entered the election with a 6% SWING against them !

    ** WE……BEES promised drop in food prices did not come about !

    ** WE……BEES Taiwan charge against the DEMS ain’t cut it !

    ** WE……BEES boast about INTEGRITY & ACCOUNTABILITY …..get EXPOSED with Clyde Mascoll & Owen big CHEQUE !

    BAJANS…….ain’t FOOLISH……how could they believe CHAPO POLL with this ADMISSION ????

    READ CARFEULLY……” A series of constituency polls commissioned by the BLP and conducted by the Cave Hill Associates Polling Organisation (CHAPO) ”


  29. Lord Straight Talk, ya all up in Mia craw… I got one for ya too.

    BLP web site – ” a series of polls … conducted by the Cave Hill Associates Polling Organisation (CHAPO), a group of pollsters whose finding across the CAribbean have proven to be remarkably accurate..”

    George Belle back in December – “In response, Belle said the Social Sciences faculty undertook the exercise because it had been seeking to develop a number of research projects since it had the resources to do them given that it could draw on people from a variety of disciplines. He added that this political poll had not been financed externally, but the department was hoping to get consultancies as it moved forward.”

    So, is it a regional group of recognised pollsters with wonderful credibility, or a fledgling project out of George Belle’s SOcial Sciences Department?

    Sigh propaganda becomes even worse when it’s so blatantly transparent.

  30. What a world we live in, do you know that Mr Hammy Lashley’s Driver is the same criminal that was arrested today for the robberies in the North of the island the cutlass attacks and the beatings.


    BRIDGETOWN, BARBADOS (JAN. 12, 2008) — The Barbados Labour Party (BLP) is behaving like a bunch of sore losers.

    Facing the prospect of defeat after almost 14 years in power, Owen Arthur and his discredited regime are running scared. They are showing their true colours for the world to see.

    An opinion poll published Friday by the Weekend Nation tipped the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) to win next Tuesday’s general election. The poll was done by Peter Wickham, the same pollster who accurately predicted wins for the BLP in the 1994, 1999 and 2003 general elections.

    Now that its political fortunes have changed, the BLP is questioning the methodology of the poll and trying to smear Wickham’s reputation. The problem with the BLP is that they fooled themselves about invincibility for so long, it’s now hard to accept the real possibility of defeat.

    It so happens that anyone who delivers a favourable report about the BLP, is their friend. However, the minute the report is unfavourable, you become an enemy. Childish behaviour! The BLP will be brought low on Tuesday. Pride and arrogance always come before a fall.

    Some 35% of respondents in the Wickham poll declared support for the DLP, 5% more than for the BLP. With a projected swing of almost 10% against the BLP, Wickham is tipping the DLP to capture at least 20 of the 30 seats in the House of Assembly to form Barbados’ next government.

    Field interviews for the poll were done last weekend. Wickham pointed out that since then, the DLP’s popularity had most likely risen further after the party made shocking revelations of BLP financial mismanagement and corruption at a massive public meeting last Wednesday night. Thousands attended.

    The real shocker for the BLP, however, is DLP leader David Thompson’s rapidly rising popularity. It is a stinging slap in the face of the BLP which went to great lengths to tear down Thompson’s image as a leader.

    Despite it all, in the space of just three months, Thompson’s national rating has shot up from 29% to 41% — just seven percentage points behind Arthur whose rating fell during the same three month period.

    There is a growing groundswell for change in Barbados. Observers are saying it would take a miracle at this eleventh-hour to save the skin of the discredited and desperate BLP which has now resorted to the most outrageous tactics on the campaign trail.

  32. The DLP is focused on bringing good governace to Barbados and not responding to BLP lies, propoganda, deciet, wickedness and filth. They have become spoliers of Barbados. We will ensure that the stealing does not continue and the miscreants brought to justice.

  33. Let us compare the two political campaings todate.

    The DLP have had the blp on the back foot from the outset of this election, theDLP’S campaing has been well thought out and has dealt with the issues facing the people and it is one that has been thought thru by ordinary citizens and the people of this island, on the other hand the blp has been run on replies to the DLP and fear Tactics and hype but most amazeingly it is not a campaign that was created by local minds with locals in their thoughts this campaign has been the brain child of one ROY BOYKE who is from TRINIDAD and he the CLOWN JEVAN from RED ADVERTISING my only comment to this is this is a sad display of your professional skills to the two of you.

    However keep the work up it is helping the success of the DLP by leaps and bounds so congrats to you both.

  34. While My heart goes out to the BLP, I think it is time to make a change. A change that will give Barbados back to the Barbadian people, I am not sure how feasible this will be but as a bajan living abroad for the last forty or so years and returning every one or two years I have seen the changes, some for better and some for worse with the changing of governments.
    The cost of living has continued to rise and is too high for the average bajan.
    It is now over to you Mr. Thompson to make some changes to meet the needs of the people of Barbados

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