Submitted by Dave R
It was a remarkable story on Sunday night (March 20, 2011) that with the price of gasoline edging closure to $3.00 per litre and with bus fare already $2.00 – speaking at the Hilda Skeene Primary School in St. Philip, more people are reported to have turned up to hear Mia Mottley speak – than had attended to hear the entire BLP during the St. John By-election, a mere three months ago. Not even when Owen Arthur speaks at Branch meetings, is the BLP able to pull so many people. It surely looks to me that there is a clamour for Mia and that the people, especially women – find her “acceptable!”
That must be a big letdown, if you are part of Arthur’s rapidly declining support base, who already know that when Mia was leader – the BLP held six public meetings (out of an election season) which mysteriously were able to attract as many people as the DLP did during the recent By-election, notwithstanding the death of Thompson and given that the By-election in St. John, was held to find someone to replace him.
But just when Barbadians thought that Muammar Gaddafi was the only political sycophant, a gang of five dead beats, launched a brutal and extremely hostile power-grabbing manoeuvre, which saw them snatched power and the leadership of Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition, from Mia Mottley, a bright and up and coming, rising star. I am not a BLP member or supporter, but I have to wonder what the BLP is really doing and whether it is serious when it accuses the DLP of being incompetent, knowing full well that it has people like, Toppin, George Payne and Gline Clarke, within its ranks.
Hardly anyone would have objected if these political ‘wild boys’ had something meaningful to contribute or were other than benchwarmers for the BLP, whose main purpose is to try and win a seat thereby providing a number, which would allow the BLP to form the Government. It has not gone unnoticed that this gang of five, closely resembles political-mad-men on the world stage — the same political-mad-men that everyone is now so desperately seeking to rid themselves of.
Take George Payne as an example. Why does he remind Barbadians so much of Robert Mugabe? Is it his unmatched capacity within the BLP to rig elections? Is it because he is really a political clown, but do not know that for obviously literal reasons? Still, Owen Arthur and George Payne have a lot in common. Like Mugabe, they both have a serious lust and desire for power.
Owen Arthur reminds me of the president of Ivory Coast who refuses to leave the presidential palace after losing elections. Arthur led the BLP to a massive defeat at the polls in 2008 and again to a humiliating defeat it the recent St. John By-election. When talking about Owen Arthur, Zine El Abidine Ben Ali of Tunisia also comes to mind. Too many lost confidence in him too quickly, despite every attempt to remain in power. It would therefore have to be with the approval of Arthur, that George Payne and the other power-hungry; lightweight men within the BLP (who form the gang of five) are able to rig elections to get a favourable result, as though the BLP is above the law, even though it receives a subvention from the public’s purse.
It was last November when Arthur and his gang of five, silenced loud demands from a patient-huge Annual Conference crowd, for reform within the BLP. Dictators and those who have a great lust for power – usually crush such cries for greater transparency; accountability and freedom of expression, as we are now seeing in Libya and Yemen. It never seems to occur to such power-hungry political thugs, that there is always a better alternative and that ‘power’ ultimately lies with the people.
Despite not being a member or supporter of the BLP, it is becoming extremely painful watching Owen Arthur take-on so many body blows, in every debate in the same House of Assemble, he (Arthur) had earlier described as “poor-rakey,” from Christopher Sinckler and other DLP Parliamentarians, who he had earlier described as “wild boys.” Since there is justification, what is being done to Owen Arthur weekly, cannot be considered “elder abuse.”
The issue of the $30 million Tipping Fee also shows that Arthur is no longer sharp and that he has difficulty remembering things. But it was the issues of the CSME that those who watched the debate on Parliament’s website saw for themselves, that none of his gang of five, have the capacity to defend him. The licks from Sinckler were so hot, that they literally ran from the House.
Making Arthur leader of the BLP and of the Opposition at this time, when the entire country agrees that the Barbados economy needs restructuring, is as outrageous as the BLP believing that having offended the female vote in this country, its plans to give a man the nomination in St George South, will cause him to beat Dr. Suckoo at the next general election. The BLP must not believe that everyone in this country is willing to turn a blind eye to corruption, even when it come in the form of election rigging and the padding of voter registration, with people who are not even members of the BLP and have never indicated any interest in joining.
Mia Mottley must therefore be congratulated for the stance she took in distancing herself from a rigged BLP election, which I believe; she still would have won easily, given that George Payne is a total lightweight. But, in share arrogance and contempt for Barbadians, the gang of five, is yet to answer the question: ‘how does it plan to bring change to Barbados, without first bring change to the BLP.’ It is now six months since media reports of electoral fraud within the BLP (the same BLP, which gets a huge subvention from the public purse) but as Leader, Owen Arthur, who is serving as political leader and Leader of the Opposition, at the pleasure of George Payne, is yet to act. In contrast, with Mia Mottley, there is every reason to believe that Barbados’ best days and that of the BLP are still ahead.