Forensic Audit Required At Chief Licensing Department In The Pine

gclarke.jpgOne issue which has overshadowed this election is the specter of mounting corruption in government. David Thompson and his party have attempted to illustrate in their campaign the many instances e.g. ABC Highway contract and the unwillingness of government to follow the procurement policy, Hardwoods Factory Housing, etc. These are the high profile examples and have for obvious reasons gained national prominence. It is known that Barbados is a small place and little can happen in secrecy before it leaks into the public domain.

Over the years and under successive governments, we have all heard the whispers about how some people were able to acquire Public Service Vehicles (PSV) permits. We have also wondered why successive governments would have resisted implementing the long proposed Transport Authority or some other watchdog agency which would remove certain decisions from the ambit of the Minister of Transport and high ranking Civil Servants. As observers, we have seen the chaos which our public transportation system has descended. Barbadians have reached the point where only those at the low end of the social ladder access public transportation as a first option. The objective for all Barbadians is now to own a car as quickly as possible to avoid the public transportation system. We reject Prime Minister Arthur’s claim that the increase in the number of cars is solely as a result of the economic prosperity of Barbados. The lack of a discernible traffic management policy has now led to the situation where PSV’s operate disproportionately on several routes across Barbados, i.e. a crazy high number of PSV licenses have been issued on routes like Silver Sands and the Pine. The end result is the ‘mini-bus hustle’ which has led to a negative sub-culture in our society.

The average Barbadian is aware that many of the PSV permits are issued to people who are ‘connected’. We are disappointed that successive governments or opposition leaders would not have made an attempt to address this matter. We all accept that an efficient transportation system is key to any country which is committed to high productivity. As we alluded to, the people who have received permits over the years have done so through the back door. This is unfortunate because the PSV industry emerged in the late 70s and early 80s as a service offered by “poor black” businessmen. It has progressed today to a situation where the buses are owned by politicians, policemen, civil servants and other people of affluence. The consequence is that the PSV culture has now taken on a momentum which our society seems to lack the will to put a brake on.

The time for this foolishness to stop is now.

We feel that there is no better time for the tight lipped civil-servants at the Chief licensing Authority, who are aware of the manipulation of the system of issuing PSV permits, to speak-out. A Minister in our government has no right to be able to make the unilateral decisions which Barbadians have observed over the years without being answerable to the people. The option of having to wait five years is unacceptable, but this is for another article.

What has prompted this outburst from BU is yet again, on the eve of an election, there is “word” that PSV permits are being sold for $5,000.00. Although we cannot prove this in a court of law, there is enough in the People’s Court to support our call for a Forensic Audit to be undertaken at the Chief Licensing Authority in the Pine. If this is done, we are very confident that some high ranking officials would have been discovered to have broken the laws of Barbados.

Now that both parties have promised to introduce Integrity Legislation, should we now become confident that the known practice of permits being sold will be abandoned? Barbados Underground makes the promise to the people of Barbados that if we do not see some effort to clean up the sorry mess at the Chief Licensing Authority, we will start to name names.


38 thoughts on “Forensic Audit Required At Chief Licensing Department In The Pine

  1. Mavis Beckles – I all fuh change too

    Published on: 1/12/08.

    OF COURSE I fuh change! Wha’ I ain’t nuhbody?

    Look, all I try to avoid the politics ting, I just cahn get way from it; it all bout the place. Wherever ya turn ya could hear people of all walks of life arguing ’bout politics. Some people even pulling way somebody in a lil corner to try to convince them and to get duh point across.

    Some people reasoning sound and very sensible, and another set just jumping up and hollering out at the top o’ duh lungs trying to get everybody to hear them; and all
    duh doing is hurting up ya earholes.

    Some people just stanning there listening very quietly and nodding while other people just hollering out in duh face, sweating, barking and soaking duh down in golf balls. But duh suh busy hollering and carrying on that them doan even realise that them same people got duh minds done mek up who them gine vote for, hear?

    Look, I was watching Taymar Jordan, Harold Hoyte and Dr George Belle pon television Wednesday gone there and I think it was Hoyte who said that he ain’t hear nuhbody talking nothing ’bout the real issues like the cost o’ living, the Hardwood issue or nothing so.

    All he hearing the Democratic Labour Party hollering out and shouting for is change, change, change; and the Barbados Labour Party, on the other hand preaching leadership.

    Well he ain’t really wrong, ’cause it looks like all the DLP die-hards doing just that, even some people who ain’t know which side to support nor wha’ gine on.

    All they doing is just hollering fuh change, too; not that duh thought out nutten, ya know? But duh hollering fuh change.

    Talking ’bout change, I really enjoying the type o’ ads and li’l excerps that ya seeing from the two major parties’ pon the TV when the nights come.

    Look, I was talking to one o’ my sisters when duh feature David Estwick in one o’ de excerps and he was hollering out that them want to get in the House of Assembly and shouting at the top o’ he vocal cords: “We want pow-a, we want pow-a” all the time.

    My sister say: “Oh, so dah is um? Dah is wha’ all wunna want nuh? Wunna want pow-a? Wunna want change? Wha’ who in duh right mind does change a good pair o’ patent leather shoes fuh a pair o’ dog muzzles?”

    Well, I gine tell ya, I nearly dead wid the laugh.

    But on a more serious note though, I want change too. This is a democratic society, so if the people that were elected to run the country ain’t performing to my liking, of course I would be the first to say change them; but you know something?

    I have to be able to put somebody else in their place who would be coming with fresher and different ideas. I must be able to change them for people who have the vision to carry this country a li’l further than the last set o’ people carry it; I must be comfortable in my skin with the people I change them for, but I ain’t gine just change fuh changing sake.

    Spiritual change

    I ain’t only want political change, though.I want the Prime Minister to follow in his wife’s footsteps and give his life to Christ and be an example to the team
    he leading.

    I want him to know that he could head this li’ll nation and run its affairs effectively from now ’til’ kingdom come, but he still needs to change his heart towards his God, the one and only who gives him the ability to do what he is doing.

    I want him to be like Rev. Joseph Atherley and let the whole world know that he ain’t ashamed to be a Christian.

    I want change in the minds of some o’ we people who only looking for short term benefits from the politicians’ promises.

    I want change in the minds o’ some o’ my people who say that them ain’t voting because them think that all politicians is the same, but don’t realise that had not for we old people who had to go through all kinds o’ hell fuh we to be able to vote today, we would not have an opinion, a right, nor a say in the matters of the running o’ this nation.

  2. “Look, I was watching Taymar Jordan, Harold Hoyte and Dr George Belle pon television Wednesday gone there and I think it was Hoyte who said that he ain’t hear nuhbody talking nothing ’bout the real issues like the cost o’ living, the Hardwood issue or nothing so.”

    Mavis you talk a whole lot and just said nothing— sort of like the BLP

    the above people have been responsible for discussing important issues for all Barbadians and have been too busy sucking on the teat of the public purse.

    impotent toadies of further corruption

  3. Wha’ who in duh right mind does change a good pair o’ patent leather shoes fuh a pair o’ dog muzzles?”


    I love that line it had me cracking up when I read it.

  4. That is only if you believe it is a good pair of shoes. I did not know that Mavis could not keep her political identity hidden.
    Been listening to David Ellis for years and even now cannot tell which side of the fence he is on. That is true balance. I guess he lives by some code of conduct. Same cannot be said now for Harold, Tony, Tafari, Belle and others.

  5. First of all Mavis Beckles the writer is really Carolyn Leacock – who must play the part since after all she got a lil pick from the P.M.
    and doesnot want to lose her job.

    Ignore the drivel.

    Secondly I believe the name of the owners ,note not company name but the owners who received licenses for PSVs should be published in both sunday newspapers.

    It may surprise many to find out that a lot of these public vehicles are owned by these kensington indians and their group and they have been aided and abetted by Billie Miller who owns some of these mini buses with her woman friend Hafeeza Adams – from the Adams store (I think her first name is Hafeeza).

    Take a careful look and see that the vile wutless practices that encapsulates the mini bus culture doesnot affect the lives of the children of these indian owners of the mini bus,since their children donot travel on the bus but in their parents cars.

    So these unpatriotic indians are making their wealth off the back of the poor black man children – all with the help of Glyne Clarke,Billie and the others in the BLP.

    Sad to say some iggrunt black people have joined the destruction of the future generation.

    We have to take back our country people or else in another 5 – 10 years bajan balcks will be second class citizens in their own land,to which our forefathers worked so o o o o hard.

    Bajans should monitor carefully what happens to the corrupt politicians when the DLP gets in,and I too would like to join with Barbados Underground to call for forensic audits and not no long,drawn out useless commission of Inquiry.

    Insist that the DLP do forensic audit and then prosecute.

    Nuff said.

  6. wunnah like the word LEADERSHIP

    i look the word INTEGRITY. It encapsulates everything.


    management honesty control
    control truthfulness command
    dictate honour rule
    guidance reliable dominate
    power sincerity authority

  8. After 15 yrs
    Highway- mismanagement
    Gems- mismanagement
    Airport – mismanagement
    Greenland – mismanagement
    Kensington – mismanagement
    Hardwood – mismanagement
    QEH – mismanagement
    Transport – mismanagement
    Housing – mismanagement

    where there is mismanegement, there is incompetance and/or theiffing 15 yrs of it.

    Bribery(compaign funds)

    need I say anymore?

  9. There was a time when the Ministry of Transportation and Works was a place where people were posted who had feallen out of favour with the PM. Nowadays given the mega-dollars associated with this Ministry it has become a place which is now not so bad.

  10. Georgie Porgie,

    How do you like that crowd on stage with Kerrie Symmonds?

    Have you found the channel for DLP TV yet?

  11. I like Luciano’s music. I also like Freddy McGregor’s music.

    Good Jamaican singers and CSME brothers.

    But should elections in Barbados be about the FUTURE OF BARBADOS or concerts from Jamaican singers?

    Would love to hear what you have to say about that. Would also love to hear from David of BU, since he hates CSME and resents the presence of other Caribbean people in Barbados.

  12. Time For Change // January 12, 2008 at 10:15 pm (edit)

    It is time for change in Barbados.

    Clyde Mascoll has changed.

    Hamilton Lashley has changed.

    Johnny Tudor has changed.

    Trevor Prescod has changed.

    Rudy Grant has changed.

    Kerrie Symmonds has changed.

    Even GABBY has changed.

    Change from the DLP to the BLP.

    Time For Change,

    From your quote we in Barbados and on BU have FINALLY been able to learn what politics of inclusion mean.

    “I like Luciano’s music. I also like Freddy McGregor’s music.” Just like you to we have no problem with the DLP using such artiste to get the young people out to hear their candidates message, its working because it got someyoung people we know to get out to hear the message.

    “Time For Change”

  13. Time For Change
    Ya got me dey, I must admit.

    Kerrie is a good boy though. He has done well. Very impressive record of accomplishments.
    He got a good MC too, whom I know very well.

  14. bUnderGround,

    “Just like you to we have no problem with the DLP using such artiste to get the young people out to hear their candidates message, its working because it got someyoung people we know to get out to hear the message.”


    Don’t fool yourself. Elections are about VOTES. Attendance of a Luciano concert or a Freddy McGregor concert hosted by the DLP is no guarantee of a vote for the DLP on election day. A person could attend the concert and still vote BLP or PEP or PDC. A person could attend the concert and NOT vote at all. And a person could NOT attend the concert and still vote.

  15. One thing I must say is that the advent of these webcast political meetings in Barbados is VERY GOOD for democracy in our country. I deeply regret that the DLP has been unable to match the BLP in the use of technology in this manner, but we can be 100% sure that it will be a feature of all future general elections in Barbados. What I love most about the webcasts is that we are seeing and hearing the candidates as they speak and as things unfold, the good, the bad and the ugly. No next-day newspaper article or radio news report (biased or unbiased) can compare, not even a sound clip from a TV news report because those are selective.

    Whether they win, lose or draw in Tuesday’s election, the BLP has introduced something new, something good and something exciting to politics in Barbados.

    The publishing of both parties’ manifestoes on the internet in PDF format is also worthy of commendation.

    The ads and cartoons from the BLP and DLP have been particularly humourous. My favourite from the DLP is the cartoon of Mia Mottley in the boxing ring squashing Owen Arthur, and from the BLP there is NOTHING more brilliant than the WE WANT POWA video featuring David Estwick.

    The most dangerous and negative aspect of the use of technology in this election, which threatens freedom of speech and democracy in Barbados, comes not from the two major political parties, but from biased and hypocritical blogs such as Barbados Free Press and this same Barbados Underground which have been closely monitored over the course of this election and have been observed to DELETE comments from readers which support one particular political party.

    All in all it has been a very good election so far. But it is not over yet and there is still a long way to go until polling day on Tuesday.

    I like what Liz Thompson just said about community watch in her impromptu speech.

  16. David,

    I have stuck my neck out on every conceivable topic so far….. from the ABC highway to religion. Have I been wrong so far!?!

    What wrong what?!?

    Here is my latest position:

    I have studied the man….
    David Thompson will be the best Prime Minister that this country has ever had… including his mentor the GREAT EWB.

    Unfortunately, his leadership will be dominated by a time of economic difficulties unlike any we have seen in living memory…. if only he had been ready in 2003….

    Bush Tea

    Maybe we will differ with you somewhat on this opinion. If Thompson wins next week he would have brought a ‘battle hardened’ mindset to the job which he would not have had in 2003. Also we tend to measure the contribution a Prime Minister makes not by the number of times he was elected but by his contribution in real terms to moving the country forward on economic and social fronts. In this regard Erskine Sandiford and Bree St. John are good examples. Some do believe that Arthur has benefited considerably from the corrective measures which Sandiford rolled out in the early 90’s.

  17. Barney Lynch made a total ass of himself and the BLP tonight at Redman Village, he called people goats and fools, he did not say a word about tourism or about his area. He spent the time arguing about who is better looking him or Kerry? He said that Rommel was too red and too old. THAT MAN IS A TOTAL JACKASS!!!! THE WORST SPEAKER I HAVE HEARD THIS WHOLE ELECTION. He brought the discussion to a new low. Just days from an election and did not cease the opportunity.

  18. Owen gave one of his best “small flat form” speeches to date he stuck to the topic and spoke well. Liz was pretty good especially in the second half. I want the BLP to win, but I am willing to give away the BARNEY LYNCH seat. Please ………. That man disgraced the whole BLP tonight.

  19. The most dangerous and negative aspect of the use of technology in this election, which threatens freedom of speech and democracy in Barbados, comes not from the two major political parties, but from biased and hypocritical blogs such as Barbados Free Press and this same Barbados Underground which have been closely monitored over the course of this election and have been observed to DELETE comments from readers which support one particular political party.

    We respond to the above comment by saying that BU reluctantly took the decision to delete comments posted by someone whose purpose is to disrupt conversations on our blog. We took that decision after many requests from commenters, but despite all said we leave those comments up from time to time for all to see. We will not stand for any one on the blog threating the lives of other commenters, etc. We also will monitor what we feel is a deliberate attempt to spam. We also took the decision to place the blog on moderation when it is unattended.

    How can anyone accuse BU or BFP of not allowing freedom of expression? Much of what is discussed in the Bajan Blogosphere can never be discussed in the traditional press.


  20. David

    Don’t waste your time responding to such drivel from idiots who think that fairness is having ONLY their opinion published – like in the Nation.

    We judge you by your fruits – and you have been a true blessing for Barbados.

    ….don’t mine I can’t ever get you to agree with my studied and reasoned positions and theories(LOL)

    What I have come to like about Thompson is not so much what he says,as the way he LIVES.

    I like his family life
    I like his humility (a problem he had in younger days)
    I like his intellect
    I like the fact that he has succeeded in private life..and
    I like the fact that he is constrained to live up to the Combermere school song….

    MOST of Arthur’s success was due to outstanding leadership from Sandi, however Sandi did not know how to inspire confidence.

    For example, that 8% cut was a masterstroke which is responsible for the strength of the $Bds to this day, and also for causing the World Bank to rethink its failing strategies. This at a time when EVERYONE else was devaluing currencies…

    Instead of selling that brilliant stroke of genius as “Bajans sacrificing for their great country”, he allowed the BLP to sell it as an assault on Bajans.

    Like my other ‘far-fetched’ posts (such as the fact that the BNB will suffer in the ABC scam) this too will come to pass and I will say’ Bush tea told you so….’

  21. Prime Minister Sandiford was one of the most honest men I have met in politics. That is why he was designated by Prime Minister Barrow in the event of his death. He made a mistake in borrowing too much from the Central Bank, and he fixed it via the 8% pay cut. I was one of those who marched against it, but in hindsight he couldn’t have done anything else to preserve our couontry. He is a true patriot. He sacrificed himself in payment for his mistake.

    The institution of the VAT tax resulted in a huge excess of funds into the treasury. As a result of this the BLP was in a position to begin a great many projects. However this same excess is what has led to the corruption that we now see.

    Perhaps Bajans will put back a corrupt institution of the BLP because of the same conservatism that saved them, when they accepted the 8% paycut. Perhaps they will supercede their conservative instincts and vote in a new government.

    There is no crime in someone like myself coming out and saying they want a new uncorrupt institution in power. I believe that the VAT revenue will continue to generate funds that, if used honestly and wisely, can stand us in good stead and make our country functional.

    It is the haemorrage of the funds to the offshore that I see, the corrupt dealings that are evident by the present administration that bother me. It has bothered me more than just since the Bussa speech- it has bothered me for a couple of years now. Entrenched politicians see no reason why not to sneak out a bunch of money, as themoney is there. This is wrong, and that is why I believe a change will do us good.

    If we do not change I expect that we will still function, though our island will then be certified as corrupt. I do not wish to live in a corrupt island, and that is why I changed my support from Prime Minister Arthur to the untried new candidate, David Thompson.

    I like my MP, but it is leadership, the leadership of Owen Arthur, that I see as the issue. If leadership maters most, vote out the incumbent PM, an evidently corrupt man.

  22. Bizzy and Nichols know better,

    That is one of the most stupid and idiotic set of comments I have ever read on this blog.

  23. Let us compare the two political campaigns todate.

    The DLP have had the blp on the back foot from the outset of this election, theDLP’S campaign 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 amazingly 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.

  24. The leader of the DLP put the ABC project under scrutiny as part of his electoral. After his comments and allegations I was rather pleased when it was indicated that Ralph “Bizzy” Williams had taken the time to write a letter to the newspaper on the issue.

    I must admit that I was rather disappointed with the letter.

    Mr Williams makes no comment on the allegation of no formal contract between the government and the main contractor. Mr. Williams also makes no comment on the allegations of an absence of formal drawings, specifications and Bills of quantities. I had rather hoped that someone with the knowledge and experience of Mr. Williams would have shed some light on what appears to be some rather glaring management errors.

    Mr. Williams appears to attribute most of the “cost overruns” to increases in the price of steel. He would have been rather more persuasive if he had provided some in formation as to what percentage of the cost of the project is related to the price of steel. Maybe its my ignorance about the cost structure of these types of projects, but simply saying that the increases in the cost of the project are in line with the increases in the price of steel seems inadequate. For example if steel accounts for 50% of the cost of the project, a fifty percent increases int eh cost of steel would lead to a 25% increase in the cost of the project.

    Mr. Williams refers to delays caused by technocrats , but he provides precious little information to support his contention. In my view the relevant issue is whether or not any interventions by technocrats were outside normal procedures.

    I expected rather more from such a well informed and knowledgeable commentator.

  25. Hear! hear! Doc;

    In Structural Systems’ (2S’s) Annual Report, Bizzy brags that he was instrumental in bringing 3S to Barbados and getting Government to accept the ABC /Flyover project.

    Now that the fan has been impacted by his ‘doings’, I call on Bizzy to:

    1- Say if He or 2S or any of his other interest- has any shares in 3S.

    2 – Tell us what 3S brings to the table that COW or Rayside could not.

    3- Tell us if , as a Professional Engineer and Company Boss, he would award a MOU for a $200M contract without detailed plans or competitive bids

    4- Tell us how he was able to exert such influence over Owen and Gline Clarke (apart from his good looks)

    5. Say how much he ‘gives’ to each party and if this influences his sway with ministers.

    ….are we beginning to see the source of the Williams brothers’ “great successes” over the years?

  26. The matter of PSV licenses was raised in the last Auditor-General’s report. From memory the comment was that the official government policy is that no new licenses are to be issued, however every year the Minister issues new ones.

    It has become routine that the Auditor-General’s observations appear to be ignored by Government. This is fertile breeding ground for corruption.

  27. There are those who express doubt, as if this is time for a change, in my little way, I say this is time for change, because change will allow us to build a new foundation, on which we can have, what the great thinkers and leaders of our beloved country envisaged, when they thought of a Barbados for their sons, daughters, grandchildren and future generations of Barbadians.


    Not a morality that is imposed by strident lectures, or tells people how to live their lives, or that it wants to interfere or prevent people from enjoying themselves, but a morality that is understood and accepted by the majority population, and yet is capable of understanding the needs of minority groups, within the bounds of what reasonable people would consider proper.

    Justice that allows people to know, that should they transgress the Law of the land, they will be held to account, before the courts. It does not matter how rich or poor they are, black or white, Judges, Magistrates, and Policemen with character and probity will feel empowered to do their duty unfettered by outside interest. No phone calls form important persons, to usurp the Law of the land.

    Honesty, that prevents bribes and corruption being accepted as normal. A dispensing with the idea that you have to know somebody, if not, you are abandoned to the fringes of society, with no opportunity for your children, to benefit from what they are entitled to, as citizens of the state.

    Freedom to express opinions, against the Administration in your own name, without fear of victimization or ridicule. Freedom to use our beaches, without being hindered from doing so by unscrupulous individuals – blocking paths to the beachs – who seek to dominate Barbadians, aided by the actions of corrupt intermediaries.

    Full knowledge, that the prosperity of our nation will be ours, and we are entitled to it. Prosperity is not the right of a selected few, by dint of race, colour or social position. The little “bare foot boy” or girl should know, that should they work hard, and have the academic ability and talent, deserving opportunities will be made available to them, as much as anyone else. Too much talent has been wasted in the past and Barbados is the poorer because of it.

    Independence to live our lives as free people, within bounds which allows others to live theirs without interference, providing that they respect the independence of others.

    People should be treated with respect and dignity, as a matter of course, that is your right unless your behaviour makes that impossible. It should not be the case that whites, or blacks or certain classes are given automatic right to fair treatment, denied to others, because of colour, position, class or social standing.

    There is a lot to be done, but it can only be done if certain cancers are cut out of our society, only then, can we look forward to many decades of genuine prosperity and success. When there is change, some people often have to face hard truths, if that is the case and you have voted BLP before, you simply have to ask yourself, what type of society would I like my children to grow up in, and ponder awhile. I hope you will make the right decision, for yourself, your children and Barbados. I feel that the “Democratic Labour Party under David Thompson” is best able to bring about change, that is my opinion, as in all things you have to make up your own mind.

  28. I have already stated that Jan 15th is going to be judgement day. As a nation I believe that it is going to tell us who we have become. We are going to discover who we are as a people. Fa real!

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