Barbados Left Behind; Where Is The Leadership?

Prime Minister Fruendel Stuart

Many accuse BU of being too negative because there is a heavy focus on what is wrong as we see it. We do reflect sometimes to ask  if such is the case. So far the consensus in the BU household is that we represent an alternative view not often found in traditional media. We will soldier on!

Three events in the news in recent days have reinforced our view that Barbados is like a rudderless ship which lacks clear leadership. This has been the case for the last twenty years which coincidentally straddles DLP and BLP governments.

The first event in the news  was that several government websites were hacked. The Internet is used to facilitate the sharing of information and financial transactions. The lack of a serious reaction to the hacking speaks volumes. The government of Barbados in 2011 is obviously not a serious user of the Internet to facilitate financial transactions. Barbados we are told aspires to be first world which does not accord with the lazy way we have embraced the Internet to facilitate business development. How can we expect to fan entrepreneurial development if the Internet is not used by government to facilitate financial transactions? LIME and Digicel are about to roll out 4G and 3G respectively and for what? No doubt LIME and Digicel will continue to rake in the revenues from recreational activities by a population intoxicated by Facebook, Twitter, streaming videos and texting to the VOB show, ‘the things we do for love’.

The second event is the news that the Barbados international business sector has contracted. Today (25/11/2011) on local radio the head of Invest Barbados approximated that five hundred million dollars and 2700 jobs have been lost to Barbados because of our inability to compete. One of the key reasons cited by the Wayne Kirton of Invest Barbados is the archaic procedures within the civil service which makes decision making a very slow process. Do you believe documents for input and review by players in the Civil Service are circulated in a manila file and according to Wayne Kirton can take over six months to reach the decision makers? There was mention that some of our legislation may require tweaking. Why would we not do an audit of the pieces of legislation which impact the international business sector and throw all the resources at it to ensure that we remain competitive? Why would we continue business as usual and be surprised by the result? Why not take Andy Armstrong’s suggestion that if the CPC Office is overworked why not outsource the drafting of legislation?

The third news item was the revelation by the National Union of Public Workers (NUPW) it will not entertain any wage freeze talk at this time. Remember this is a government which is printing money to honour its day to day obligations. What we have is a ‘pissing contest’ between the NUPW whose membership is mainly government workers and the Barbados Workers Union (BWU) which represents private sector workers. The more important point is the reluctance by government and the unions to agree that our civil service is not configured to allow Barbados to be competitive in the international business sector. In fact if we take Wayne Kirton seriously – and there is no reason to doubt him –  the civil service has become a serious drag.

There are several other examples we can list which reinforces the view that a lack of strategy execution finds us in a place where all and sundry are picking our bones and we seem helpless to respond. While all this is happening the country is being governed by the largest Cabinet in our history whose eagerness to jetset across the globe in austere times  exhibits unacceptable insensitivity.

0 thoughts on “Barbados Left Behind; Where Is The Leadership?

  1. Guy Fawkes:
    “This government don’t strike me as being stupid so this must be misinformation.”

    The real Guy Fawkes was not a really smart guy! But you will not follow in your namesake’s footsteps, would you? You name the things that this administration has gotten right!
    The most recent action by the CBB dismissing the role of a legally appointed department of government. What about the marina contract award project and the announcement of a new hospital with no indication of it ever coming into existence? Where will it be located? How will be financed? When will it end and start (estimated at least)? All we know is Why we need a new hospital, something we knew many years ago?

  2. @millertheanunnaki

    At least we the public know now that they don’t have a location, nor a start date, nor the money to build the hospital, but let us look at the positives.

    The news conference called, allowed us to know they have the drawings for the replacement hospital.

  3. @ Guy Fawkes:
    Drawings that were already done way back, dusted off to look brand new and presented as a brand new second hand design. Same thing with the marina project. And loads of money in consultancy fees floating between Martindales Road and the Pier Head.

  4. Just like David I too wish minister Estwick success, because if he is successful so will we be the people of Barbados. As a matter of fact, if the government were successful so would be Barbados.
    I don’t know if Estwick is better, smarter or more dedicated than the rest of the cabinet. What I do know is that Ionic Freshwater Ltd. is smiling all the way to the bank. Hopefully we’ll see an improvement in the delivery of the quantity and quality of water from BWA.

  5. @millertheanunnaki | October 29, 2011 at 4:07 PM |
    “@ Guy Fawkes:
    Drawings that were already done way back, dusted off to look brand new and presented as a brand new second hand design. Same thing with the marina project”
    Yes Miller. Uh can’t fathom that in the case of the Marina, the original, but substantially adequate plans, which could possibly just need a few low cost adjustments (well at least put the thing on the table and let others see what’s going on) are being REDONE FOR AN EXTRA $27 MILLION DOLLARS!!!!!???? Will Somebody, please say it ain’t so??? Sounds like a lot of STEALING there …. OOPS SORRY … uh mean STEEL IN THERE!

    • What can we make of former Minister of Economic Affairs Mia Mottley and Opposition Leader not participating on the panel discussion on Day 2 of the Barbados Labour Party Conference 2011?

  6. @ Truthman Burton:
    I am beginning to warm to your man if only for the simple reason that this country is in the managerial hands of a set of clowns reminiscent of the Marx brothers. At every turn these guys seem to be accident prone. The latest being this new hospital declaration. No wonder investor confidence in this country is at an all-time low. If things continue down the current path this country will be in deep “do do” in 2 years.

    At least OSA, with the help of Clydie and the likes of you, might just be able to restore some measure of respectability to the management of this country’s financial and economic affairs thereby gradually restoring investor confidence. I doubt very much if we can borrow money from our T&T neighbours at this stage.

  7. I have become truly sick and fed up with the offensive, tasteless manner in which the DLP, to now excessive degrees, has utilised CBC TV , to often promote their partisan political views.

    Viewers were tonight subjected to an uncouth, malicious attack on Clyde Mascoll.via CBC prime time news by Acting Prime Minister Ronald Jones, the man groomed for FIFA headship (can’t imagine anybody being groomed without intimacy) by football DEMON Jack Warner. The episode had to do with Mascoll’s FORCED departure from the DLP, but Jones applied his own particular nasty-minded version of what happened, even suggesting that some EVIL was afoot!

    This man Jones talks non-step these days, and clearly suffers from a bad case of verbal diarhea, agravated by a strange obsession with DEMONS and things EVIL.

    It is disgraceful that the DLP CRONIES at CBC TV are using the facilities to allow the broadcast of a malicious political attack on Mr. Clyde Mascoll such as Jones’, and CBC does not have the common decency to obtain a view from Mascoll on what transpired? Whatever happened to their mantra, ‘CREDIBLE, BALANCED, COMMITTED?”

    This is not Gov’t Information Service business. This is blatant political campaigning by a Governing party that seems patently unable to execute the transition from Opposition Party to Governing Party.

    Never in Barbados’ history has the taxpayers’ TV Station been so despicably employed as if it belongs to a political party.

    Right at this moment, the Barbados Labour Party holds its 73rd Annual Conference at Sir Grantley Adams Secondary School, an institution named in honour of a Barbadian Hero, who fought valiantly to gain ordinary Barbadians the right to vote. The right to vote implies a liberty that extends far beyond the entitlement to mark a piece of paper in a voting booth once every five years. Citizens do have a right to form a fair and balanced judgement , and are therefore entitled to be informed about their political choices.

    SO THE RIGHT TO VOTE includes a right not to be DECEIVED and not to be lied to. LYING in a democracy is therefore an especially disreputable act. Members of Parliament are still forbidden to call their political opponents liars in the House of Assembly. Lying disempowers, and therefore dehumanises those who are lied to. By their DECEPTION and LYING , and blatant misuse of CBC TV by DENYING the populace to even hear the very worthy views of the opposition, the DEMs Politicians are attempting to turn back the gains of Sir Grantley Adams, and are depriving voters of the ability to come to reasonable and well-informed decisions how to cast their vote.

    The DEMOCRATIC LABOUR PARTY boast of educating the people but they are in fact misleading the people and trying to turn them into fools! It CANNOT BE ALLOWED TO HAPPEN. !!

    • @Truthman Burton

      Tell us, when you are returned to office will your management of the CBC be any different?

  8. have to agree with you in the most part david, but it wasn’t so bad under the blp. they still got some media coverage while the blp was in power.

  9. @ David
    Quote, “Tell us, when you are returned to office will your management of the CBC be any different?” End quote.
    Can you be any clearer on that, David? How soon you think we have to wait for this welcomed bit of news to be a reality? May the good Lord be merciful to us ungrateful beings.

  10. Don’t think Truthman has anything to worry about. DLP or BLP in power same eventuality for CBC: Forced sale or closure. Lime will soon put a dent in its subscription TV revenues. No financial assistance from central government will be available. CBC is a ripe candidate for privatization under the coming IMF regimen or it will be Time to close shop if no buyer.

  11. Hants we do get the international news here in Barbados, we also have cable just in case you didn’t know.

  12. CANT you see that they dun wid MIA?
    YOU think she could lead the BLP again ?
    YOU dont seem to understand that she must have done something wrong ?
    Kric Krac -Riddle or Story ????

  13. @ JUST ASKING:
    What do you foresee? What would be your assessment or political take on the leadership of the BLP if they should NOT WIN the next general elections?
    Come on, expand a bit in your reply instead of your Socratic irony!

  14. It might have been nice to know why the GG has resigned just for the record. Was he rejected by the queen etc? When our history is read they will be so many gaps because the media doesn’t report the when, where, how, and why.

  15. Guy Fawkes

    It was reported that the GG claims health issues affected his decision. Of course many will ask if others matters factored. Some believe he took way to long to get back to the Prime Minister when Gibson’s name was submitted for his sign off. We may never now.

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