Trouble Brewing At Dodds Prison

One of the more controversial projects inherited by the Barbados government is the state-of-the-art prison project located at Dodds, St. Phillip. First it was tagged at one hundred million dollars, then two hundred million and in recent weeks the figure has jumped to seven hundred million. We couldn’t resist jumping on the seven hundred million band wagon! Yes BU is aware the seven hundred and forty nine million refers to the future cost of the prison which was built under a BOLT financing arrangement. Governor Delisle Worrell at his most recent press conference felt constrained to mention the impact the prison loan will have on the foreign reserves come every January for the next 22 years. Barbados under the current arrangement has to repay for the next 22 years $30 million dollars.

What has made the Dodds prison even more controversial is the fact it was built by VECO, an Alaskan based company which had a very murky reputation before it was sold. VECO had no track record of building prisons at the time the contract was awarded; in case you are wondering there is the  uncanny similarity to the ABC Highway contract which was awarded to 3S. The recent report in the press which fingered Minister Darcy Boyce as a key participant in the decision to award the VECO prison contract has added to the intrigue.

In all of the discussion about VECO and a seven hundred and forty nine million dollar prison, Barbadians appear to have forgotten the plight of the prison warders. Going back to the last administration the prison warders have expressed concerns with their conditions of employment. BU remembers prison boss John Nurse attempting to make some changes at the prison and the Prison Officers Association forced to request the legal services of Ralph Thorne to defend member’s interest. How can Barbados forget the inquiry into the burning down of Glendairy which again brought warder grievances to public light. We are into the mid-term of the current administration and the problems have not gone away.

According to BU sources the officers at the Barbados Prison Service feel marginalized by the administration and have turned to BU for help.

Here is what we know:

  1. 38 Prison officers will be going home soon.
  2. A number of qualified Senior Officers have had their acting allowance cut. Some of these officers have been acting since the 90’s.
  3. The Prison Officers Association is being ignored by Personnel Administration, Public Service Commission, Advisory Board, Permanent Secretary, Attorney General and the Prime Minister.
  4. Last week an officer was threaten with a gun at the Prison gate by an ex-convict, the prison warder who recently married an ex-Convict was present. When questioned by the police she stated that the officer in question had ‘nuff to say bout she and she husband and she aint giving any information.’ The report of the incident is lodged at District C Police Station.
  5. There are other reports of theft at the prison, officers are stealing from each other to survive and support their families because they are not being adequately remunerated.
  6. Officers have been separated in the interim because of financial and emotional problems, officers have been going to counselling regularly.

BU suggests mismanagement was part of the problem experienced at the Glendairy Prison before it was razed, we hope lessons have been learnt from that experience.

28 comments

  • You may want to correct the units in the opening [“First it was tagged at one hundred thousand dollars, then two hundred thousand and in recent weeks the figure has jumped to seven hundred thousand. We couldn’t resist jumping on the seven hundred thousand band wagon! Yes BU is aware the seven hundred and forty nine million…”], making the thousands into millions.

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  • Barbados under the current arrangement has to repay for the next 22 years US30 million dollars. should be replace with with . Barbados under the current arrangement has to repay for the next 22 years US15 million dollars. it 30 million bds. not us

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  • @Anthony

    It seems some people can get the currencies mixed up when talking about the new prison.

    Hopefully the warders can log on to BU and fill in the blanks.

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  • now as for the prison. I don’t think anyone should be acting any position for over a year in the public sector. if they are make that their permanent post. we have heard report of acting prison officer not being paid for 4,5,6 months of work that really need to stop. the lack of pay might be due also to non promotion to fill existing spot as such they need to keep streamlining the service so position can be filled and people paid. if that is done points 5 and 6 should be solved. as for the allege incident. if he was brandishing a gun which would be illegal since he shouldn’t have a gun license it should have be caught on the security camera at the gate. seeing there hasn’t been any arrests yet it really very weird.

    now all the talk of cost no one has bother to ask what is actually worth. what is the prison worth today and what will be worth in 22 years. While government property value is seldom used as really who going to buy it it always interesting to know. after who knew what nhc building was worth today till the barack case. though highly unlikely that someone would ever buy it does give some feedback to see if the investment was worth it. now most real estate companies quote rate of return of Barbados somewhere between 5 and 10% let use 5 ,7.5 and 10 as examples. now at 5% current worth be worked out compounded at cost would be 315 million at 24 year which be end of loan its 922 million. at 7.5% now it would be 330 million and at 24 years 1.6 billion. at 10% 346 million and 24 years 2.8 billion.

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  • @ Anthony

    So you would agree then that it is all relative? I take it that you are suggesting that we have to weigh the current cost against the eventual value to us 22 years hence in order to arrive at a true perspective?

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  • @ Anthony

    I guess the same would apply to the average person buying a home. The price the buyer would have paid for a property 22 years ago certainly would not be representative of what the property would be now worth today, 22 years later. Providing of course the property was properly maintained and upkept over the ensuing years. I must say that throws a completely new perspective on the matter under discussion.

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  • Here are some pictures of what the inside the prison looks like.

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  • It mostly a case of compounding investment vs amortization of a loan. In which compounding investment normally win even if compounding interest is 1/2 the value of loan interest. though these figure are just giving a value of property that doesn’t mean that government can find a buyer or that it can put up the prison as an asset for a loan.

    mostly property value has seen tremendous increase in recent years. thou most people don’t get their property revalue every 5 years. so they have no idea of what it worth currently.

    As for the real issues. the prison officers shouldn’t have to acting for a position for year then it finally permanent.

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  • Some would argue the BLP had an excuse for the prison burning down, given what we have heard the level of disgruntlement among the warders what excuse will the government have if something if Dodds has to be locked down?

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  • Then Barbados Defense Force will be called in along with the Police Force to restore order .

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  • @Raymond

    Then Barbados Defense Force will be called in along with the Police Force to restore order .

    Surely you jest?

    To call in the forces is an emergency short term decision.

    Would you then run the prison indefinitely with the RBPF and the BDF?

    Even if you recruit new warders we have the same management system in place which caused the problem in the first place.

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  • From what I am becoming to understand is that with the kind of technology being used at Dodds Prison they is no longer a need for so many guards and the CCTV systems and computer network helps to enhance security and decrease manpower. from what little I know about technology is the reason why new wardens are not being recruited.

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  • all bajans should think seriously when it comes to voting, how come they spend millions on a prison, and teachers insulting kids and putting them out of school, especially when the kids are slow learners, what does that tell society in barbados. It says if you are a slow learner and poor, chances are, all the government going to help you do is go to that state of the art prison, and the government who people voted for is proud that they built this massive prison. Bajans have to wake up, dont count out that this money for a prison was funded by the rich tourist and investors that building homes and hotels on beach property. Read between the lines bajans, insist that these people in government stand up for school children and the poor, and hold teachers accountable including parents. The education department should have special ED teachers to help and assist slow learners, barbados in way behind when it comes to educating its masses, especially the poor and underpriveledged.

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  • Quality cost and that is the price we have to pay to keep our country safe. There is a lot of modern technology which went into buliding the prison and it does cost plenty. However would you have prefer to have the inmates running buckshot wild all over the country. In the long ran the safety of the people is of utmost importance and yesw it cost money to do so.

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  • @Prison Warders

    We are waiting for you guys to tell your story. We understand Bossman Nurse has you scared shitless but somebody got to show some guts.

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  • Freundel Stuart to clean up justice system! He sure has his work cut out for him when dealing with the lawyers who represent some of the backlogged of cases.Good luck Sir! you”ll need it an a lot more

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  • alas the old saying. cheap things no good. good things no cheap

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  • Yup you get what you pay for and we do have a prison and not all o them criminals had a bad upbringing in poverty and depredation. some of em are just mean b*******ds who needs lockin up.

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  • Here is what the People’s Empowerment Power has to say about Dodds in a recent posting on their blog:

    Sunday, May 16, 2010

    We Warned You About Dodds!

    The recent revelation by the Goveror of the Central Bank that Dodds Prison will cost the people of Barbados a total of $749 million, payable over a 25 year period, further convinces the ‘Peoples Empowerment Party’ (PEP) that Barbados is well on its way to a status of ‘debt slavery’, compliments of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) and the Barbados Labour Party (BLP)!
    The BLP must be condemned for the shenanigans they perpetrated on the Barbadian people when, in 2005, they initially gave a price of "around $100 million" for Dodds, only to increase it to "$288 million" two years later, and then subjected Barbadians to having to wait a full two years after they left office before details of the full price were publicly revealed for the very first time!

    Similarly, the ‘DLP’ must also be condemned for failing in their duties as a Parliamentary Opposition during the period of BLP rule, and for accepting the ridiculous contractual arrangements entered into for the construction of Dodds. It is noteworthy that the new DLP government paid the Dodds debt in 2008 and 2009 without once protesting or even bringing the matter to the attention of the Barbadian people. In fact, Barbadians should note that it was the Governor of the Central Bank who brought this matter to their attention and shared the relevant information with them – not the Minister of Finance or any other DLP policitican! Indeed, the DLP Minister of State, Senator Darcy Boyce, actually participated in accepting and approving the Dodds contract!

    The clear conclusion to be drawn from all of this is that the DLP tacitly approved of and went along with what we now choose to call "The Dodds Fiasco". The PEP on the other hand, has been publicly protesting about this matter since 2006!

    Indeed, in a Press Release dated 4th June 2007, our party stated at follows:-

    "The PEP is demanding that Prime Minister Owen Arthur explain to the Barbadian people why the cost of the contract to construct the new prison at Dodds in St Philip has escalated from $100 million to $288 million…………….. The PEP is extremely concerned about this phenomenal increase in the contract price of the new prison……….. Indeed, as early as 8th March 2006 our Party signalled our concerns about the prison contract to Attorney General Dale Marshall, when we wrote to him requesting that we be given copies of the construction plans for the new prison and be permitted to visit the construction site at Dodds, St Philip……………………..

    The PEP demands to know why a foreign firm was selected at a price of $288 million over a local consortium of firms, whose price was much lower at $120 million………….. The PEP denounces the practice that has been routinely engaged in by both the BLP and the DLP of awarding contracts at a particular figure, and then agreeing to phenomenal increases in the cost of such contracts…………………………….

    The PEP also deplores the trend that has emerged of favoring foreign companies over their local competitors, even in circumstances where the local company is offering a lower and more reasonable price."

    The recent revelations of the Governor of the Central Bank have confirmed the relevance and correctness of the concerns that we raised back in June 2007.

    The real issue is that the narrow, incestuous two party system of governance is leading our country to ruin! And you, the citizens of Barbados need to bestir yourselves and join the PEP to engineer a broadening and a democratisation of the system, thereby facilitating greater accountability!

    posted by pep barbados at 3:43 am

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  • let me tell you something about the gaurds i was there my self you had people there filing depressed couldnt see there family. im on about the ones who lived in england when your filling down you got the gaurd playing mind games with you like mrs farral she would lock you up for no reason at all and she got a kick out of that the min she walk threw that gate that is it you know your getting lock up that was mrs farral not all gaurd was like her she was the worst one but othere gaurds thay just treated you like a dog not a human being. we was always lock up cos all the gaurd wanted to do was sit on there big ass and get payed for doing nothing.

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  • the femal gaurd. havent got a clue how to run a prison iv meet guards that didnt even do there test thay say yes you got the job that is it like i say its all wrong how thay run there prison. no wunder there always truble in that prison. the gaurd dont know how to talk to the inmate at all that is why thay end up in blackrock couse the nurse in there speak to them and dont leave them there to rot. thay told me thay know about glendairy. what the inmate are going threw i will always go on about glendairy prison and when i was there i told there gaurds. this you fuck my head up. know its my turn to talk. about what went on there there was a few gaurds there that did do there work one was mrs malonly and mrs smith and mrs conner thay were the best and the garden lady which i cant reamber her name she was nice. but the rest thay were horrable people thay are the devil. im not frighten to say any thing and the gaurds knows this i was the only one that spoke my mind in that prison. i did get in truble and got lock up for it. and know its my turn to talk that ant a prison that is a dog cannel. that prison has mess up people life. like me know i cant get it out of my head what the gaurd as done to my head my head is mess up. thank to barbados im not the same person i use to be. you lot as taken every thing away from me and that was 4 years ago. you cant treat people like this .if you dont like the job dont work as a gaurd

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  • @ #4 in here is what we know, I’ve never heard about this situation on the news or in the paper.how can an ex-con go to Dodds prison @ the gate n pull a gun on a warden and Barbados not hear of it? I’ve gone to Dodds prison to visit my loved ones and some of the wardens there treat visitors like shit, a man would go for a visit with his hair braided and he has to open at the gate making him look very untidy and believe they cannot get pass that gate if he doesn’t open his hair but an ex-con can pull a gun on a prison officer and nothing happens? There’s alot of mixed up things going on in Barbados. When a minister can pull a gun on another and nothing comes out of it but then u have a supreme judge like Randall Worrell wanting to give 1st offenders something like 7yrs on a gun charge or other judges that would lock down a person on a gun charge just because of his back ground when infact that person has not been in trouble for more than 15yrs, what message are the people in authority really sending to the people of Barbados? @ Mary, there’s alot of unjust things going on @ the prison and lots more people need to let the public know what is really going on behind the walls of Dodds, they are wardens that leave home with their problems and think because you’re a prisoner they can say and do anything to you,they treat the prisoners with total disrespect n like Mary said as though the prisoners aren’t human. Prisoners are people yes some of them are hard to deal with but if you decided to be a prison officer then you should have known it isn’t going to be an easy job. I came up hearing ‘u have to give respect to get respect’, it is something earned.

    pass,#14B,Crest View Terrace,Eden Lodge,St.Micheal.Batbados what happen to the ex-con that boldly went to Dodds gates with a gun

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  • pieceuhderockyeahright

    @ the Honourable Blogmaster

    It is interesting that you have brought this article back to the fore today for 3 reasons.

    This BOLT arrangement forms part of the several interest payments which Barbados must pay in US currency

    2.it brings to the fore the cabal of ministers and public sector persons who were party to and who would have benefited from this BDS $749 million AMONG WHOM THIS ARTICLE NOTICEABLY IGNORES THE MENTION OF DALE MARSHALL AND MIA MUGABE

    Not one mention of either in the document

    3.The document does mention the turncoat Darcy Boyce Head boy

    And their in lies the outcome of this Integrity Legislation fiasco for all non sheeple to see its impotency.

    Darcy Boyce the turncoat whose name you were quick to make bold in this article WAS THE TRUSTED ADVISOR TO THE SAME BLP ADMINISTRATION THAT IMPLEMENTED THIS $749 M payment

    The article, in speaking to the varying amounts that the BOLT costed and will ultimately costs indirectly alludes to the personal kickbacks associated parties might have benefited from this deal

    Now stay with de ole man for a little longer.

    So we have 3 prominent names of 3 potential kickback beneficiaries.

    Then Turncoat jumps BLP ship and boards the DLP titanic

    Does he inherit institutional amnesia or does he have the financial skeletons of the BLP Honourable members with whom he slept before?

    And are these 2 prominent people nis not Attorney General again and Prime Minister?

    Now say that there were or are any underhand issues pertaining to the Cahill Me Claire who you matter or for that matter, any illegal Guernsey withdrawals of foreign exchange akin to the matter that has Pornville lickdd up in America now, sorry charged, do you see anything serious coming about if

    (1) Turncoat is prover to have stolen millions of dollars from the treasury and he plays his Immunity card and Get Out of Prison Free card on his former buddies?

    (2).Do you not see the potential leverage that Turncoat has for say any ond, IF NOT ALL OF HIS DLP COLLEAGUES WHO HAVE TEIFED $$$ FROM THE BARBADOS TREASURY???

    So you see why this integrity Legislation thing us a waste foop and is doomed to fail?

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  • @ Pieceuhderock
    It ALSO shows us why there is NO HOPE for us.

    The ONLY solution for Barbados now, is to root out all the wicked corruption and bribery and to bring those who have led us down that road to a Christian understanding (Sackcloth and ashes)

    This will NEVER be possible where those charged with creating the solution are THEMSELVES in need of sackcloth and ashes.
    We will therefore continue to hear all the RIGHT TALK, and to see all the wrong ACTIONS.

    There is no way that ‘the Mob’ will implement laws against gangsterism…..
    The ONLY result is …grass

    A case in point is the current hijack of Bajan’s Government bonds.
    It SHOULD have been clear to Bajans that any Government that was prepared to let the CLICO money grab escape legal consequences to the gangsters who executed that robbery …COULD NOT be trusted to act honourably with moneys deposited in their keep.

    So when the DLP REFUSED to prosecute CLEARLY GUILTY CLICO crooks …. and indeed sided WITH them…
    …and when the BLP basically let the matter slide- except for its political value to their party…
    IT HAD TO BE OBVIOUS that these are BOTH Parties that CANNOT be trusted with other people’s monies….

    As we now know, no wise person (not even Simple Simons) should trust their life savings to such unethical persons.
    If we CANNOT trust them with a few dollars … how the donkey are we trusting them with the WHOLE country…?
    The ONLY result is ….grass

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  • @PUDRYR

    On a point of elucidation. BU blogs rise and fall on the Top Posts list based on the surfing behaviour of users on the WWW. There is no manipulation by the blogmaster to achieve the result you have highlighted.

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  • @ the Honourable Blogmaster

    I benefit from the “patterns” because of a few things (a) institutional history where unlike the archive keys that Artaxerxes has, I dont get to see the articles in the tabulated format that I sometimes think he has and (b) I get to see you, where you too have done like i do now, sharing licks to whomsoever comes

    It gives me a little more of the measure of the man and even though I know that i am right about there being 3 of you, I am able to see the backbone of the specific one of you who remains.

    I have known a few people who have gone to prison and have spoken of the practices there and how, if one is not humble to the illiterate officers that it can extend one’s stay there.

    I have also known prison officers who have experienced the wickedness associated with their being paid late and all the other administrative wickedness perpetrated by the admin side on fellow officers.

    But to come and read the raw experiences of a person who has been there and experienced this first hand, it ammmmm humbles me and makes me aware tht the very system that is designed to safeguard us, if it is not monitored, becomes the cauldron for more criminality.

    You realise that these people ARE NOT ON THE SCOPE for most bajans?

    You see the church talking out for them, or the politicians, or civil society? It just humbles me so I will pause at times and read most of the ones that surface along the way AS YOU DEFINITIVELY SEE heheheheheheh

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  • @ the Honourable Blogmaster, your assistance please with and item here for you thank you

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