Where Is The Absentee Leader Of The Opposition?

The name of the person who made the submission withheld on request, obviously a DLP supporter – BU

Leader of the Opposition Owen Arthur relaxing on the East Coast on May Day

As we draw nearer to a General Election in Barbados, the focus will be directed more seriously on the party leader of the ruling DLP and that of the opposition BLP.

The reason for this is based on the fact that, in Barbados elections, the influence of the party leader has always been of paramount importance. In this regard therefore the recent record of Mr Owen Arthur as a member of Parliament must be placed under the microscope: has he demonstrated that he is a fit and proper person to lead this country at this crucial time in our history?

In examining this question, one is forced to take note of the fact that the recent debate on The Employment Rights Bill took place without contribution by Arthur, the leader of the opposition. This is of significance since it was the BLP Government under Mr Arthur that introduced the said Bill in  Parliament in 2002; since that time it had been referred to a Select Committee of Parliament .

But Mr Arthur’s continued absence must be a cause for general concern; He has Not, since 15 January 2008 to the present spent more than a total of 10 hours  in parliament. His presence has really been restricted to an exercise of “getting his name marked”.

Indeed Mr Arthur often leaves parliament before the chaplain whose function is merely to say the prayers at the start of the session. Against this background, Mr Arthur’s PHYSICAL FITNESS must be scrutinised. It is known that of late he has had to use a walking cane for support and he has complained of a back problem. Has this been a contributory factor since these problems often prevent one from sitting or standing for long periods?

In the current debate he delegated the job of leading the Opposition effort to Mottley and Marshall, in the Upper House, to Symmonds. Surprisingly Symmonds contribution was VERY supporting of government. The result is that both Mottley and Marshall’s contributions were exposed as being out of synch with that of Symmonds.

Recently Miss Mottley was given the surprising role of major spokesman in the Estimates Debate; Mr Arthur himself has often said that the debate of the Estimates is of much greater importance than the Budget Debate. When therefore he allowed Miss Mottley to play the lead role after presiding over her ignominious removal as party leader, we must therefore question the sincerity of this decision. The upcoming Budget Debate will put his physical fitness further to the test. One thing is  certain: Miss Mottley must know when she is being used as a stop-gap to cover for her fierce enemy Owen Arthur .

Recently too , the BLP held its May day bus excursion and  the published photo of a very tired looking Owen Arthur, uncomfortably reclined in a lounge chair and holding out his hand to a young family member, did not make for happy viewing .

0 thoughts on “Where Is The Absentee Leader Of The Opposition?


  1. It’s Owen

    It’s Owen Survey shows Opposition Leader Owen Arthur re-emerging as favourite to lead the country.

    By Kaymar Jordan, Editor-In-Chief | Sun, May 20, 2012 – 12:10 AM

    Owen Arthur has re-emerged as the “preferred” leader of Barbados, and despite lingering concerns about infighting at the helm of his Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP), the current political wind seems to be briskly blowing in the party’s favour.

    These are among the key findings of the latest CADRES survey, which points to a national swing against the ruling Democratic Labour Party (DLP) and strong dissatisfaction with the performance of the Freundel Stuart-led administration.

    Of the 1 080 respondents to the survey, which was carried out last weekend in the 30 constituencies, only 29 per cent said they approved of the job being done by the Prime Minister, compared to 43 per cent who did not approve of his performance. The other 28 per cent were either unsure or would not say.

    To add to the woes of the current leader, who assumed the leadership of the Government just over a year and a half ago, following the death of Prime Minister David Thompson, he is neither preferred nationally nor seen as the best DLP man for the job.


  2. The published results of the poll defy reasoning especially in the area of leadership. The bold Sunday sun headline declares ” ITS OWEN ” and goes on to suggest a 29.8 vote in favour of Arthur and a 9.9 vote in favour of Stuart . This result was achieved by throwing the distraction presented by Mottley ,25.5 and Sinckler 19.9 into the equation . When we come to the Leadership Approval category , the poll reflects 43% showing approval for Arthur and 29% for Stuart . This result was returned without the Mottley – Sinckler distraction . One is forced to ask how does the pollster explain the significant narrowing of the gap in this instance ? Further confusion is added when the same chart reflects a 37% disapproval of Stuart and a 26% of Arthur another significant narrowing of the gap between these two . Against these statistics it is extremely difficult for the pollster to justify the overall analysis published on the front page article .


  3. Purely Objective
    I can’t understand why pundits always try to turn the tide rather than observe and learn from the flow……#*#@ man,… Mario a 10 year old from Baileys primary if he were given Stuart performance as comprehension exercise when asked ..Was Stuart a good leader would answer NO….Did he have vision… Mario answers NO…..Do you think he could regroup the confidence and lead the party…..Mario Yes..in another life time.

    Stuart unseen outside the class room door……unmoved


  4. @ Clone
    The next mistake is not making Chris Sinckler his deputy from the morning of the vote to make him leader. David Thompson made Mr. Stuart his
    deputy after having a torrid time with him while in opposition so therefore he should have recognize that your perceived enemies can be your biggest assets
    **************************************
    By your solid analysis……Why that means Chris or Sealy or DonV should be considered a crutch ..to help prop up the Master….But if we remember right PMs don’t appoint no deputy and remain in office for long (DT)…Are you saying Stuart is on the way out ?…if so how do you plan to achieve this…hope that he crosses the floor ?..Certainly not another Eager…you will have to send to China first ..to see if they could quickly fashion (like clones) any Harwood balls..eleven of them to be EXACT…cuz the odder place shut down.


  5. I never thought I would live to see the day come when Dems would dismiss a poll done by one of their own, though he says that he cannot disown his past but he is an independent. I believe him.

    They better take the data seriously as from my reading of it, he may have polled strongholds of the DLP. If this is what your own are saying, then things may be bleaker than we can imagine.


  6. But onions, why did you not tell me that it was the CLICO “terrorist” who called CBC and cancelled the Socaholics fete. He said he was calling on behalf of the PM. Now who would believe that after all that has happenend that he and Stuart are still friends.

    What is Barbados coming to when a disgraced man can call a government corporation and say he calling on behalf of the PM and cancel a private sector funded event. After all the sordid details of the forensic audit, who would believe that this man is still up in the bowels of the DLP making decisions? All they did was to enrage the staff and they are just waiting until elections.


  7. But Prodigal
    You din hear the best…..It is said it was because…..THE COLOR RED…Yes red you heard me right….Too much red was being portrayed….you could imagine people could be so petty. Wicham polls like it lick up and bring out all kinda wrath….COLOR RED…imagine that a wonder why ?


  8. Would this panic over the colour red also extend to Kaddooment bands this year? Can any of the sections be depicted in the colour red? Would this event had been cancelled if the staff wore blue??
    Just Asking, can you help us with this logic????


  9. I would like to borrow a truck…..and load it with all those love sick hurt puppies this morning as result of the polls….Din Onions tell them time n time again..ONE TERM….what they waste money for ? Now hear them lamenting…..the polls biased and skewed….like hell..Wickham…why you din include the swing is 5 % BLP as I calculated..with a high probability of a 22-8 outcome…that is my only grouse…again I say DEM urt’.
    For those mathematically inclined.. they can go look at Davids election watch and using 5% increase on those marginal seat of 2008….and they will know who gine OUT and who COMING IN….(projecting same vote participation)…..


  10. @ Prodigal
    News in the wind of approaching an ..X factor … the talk is of amend of ways.They giving not ultimatums as of yet…..Like I said from here on in they taking away a lotta meat to make a new Gran-burger…..point is if ingredients go bind…..next few days will be interesting


  11. @ NationBLPnewspaper

    You political hacks never cease to amaze me. Here you are criticizing and acusing the Nation of being pro BLP, when you have:

    1. A Socaholics event being cancelled because the colour red was chosen
    2. The first 25 minutes of the CBC news highlights DLP ministers or backbenchers engaging in activities of no real significant importance
    3. The Government Information Service focusing on the DLP
    4. All DLP events being televised on CBC
    5. The first 6 to 8 pages of the Advocate focusing on DLP politicians or supporters
    6. The Advocate not reporting on critical matters in Barbados if in their opinion it may see the DLP in a negative light

    “Is Pat Hoyos and Clyde Mascoll the only columnists who we should hear on economics and finance?”

    How many times did VOB hosted call-in-programmes where the specific topics were on matters related to the economy, and invited members of the DLP, including Frank Alleyne, Jepter Ince, Chris Sinckler, thereby giving them the opportunity to defend policy, and they refused to turn up.

    “You are doing Barbados an injustice – time for balance.”

    Where is the “balance” at CBC with Rosemary Alleyne, and the Advocate?

    Come on pimp, surely you can do better than this nonsense.


  12. As usual, the same old cry “CBC does do it too”- the only defense for the Nation’s sellout of journalistic standards is “CBC does do it too”.
    Arise from your ignorance,novice- Breaking News – CBC and The Barbados Advocate always favour the party in power. Do you forget the BLP candidates for St. Michael prior to the last election on CBC highlighting the houses to be repainted for Cricket World Cup?
    Do you remember the Advocate front page editorials defending the BLP ?

    The Nation was supposed to be the balanced paper – “all the paper for all the people” – fearless in its reporting and willing to mash anyone’s toes.
    The Nation has now been compromised- Can you ever see Kaymar Jordan criticising her good friend Owen Arthur? The Nation has stacked their columns with straight BLP supporters from Albert Brandford and Ezra Alleyne to Peter Symmonds,Pat Hoyos and even the official spokesman for the opposition every Thursday.
    When all is said and done , the reality remains that The Nation is basically an extension of the BLP campaign – you can always tell a paper’s political leaning by the columnists and contributors they employ – Remember , the Nation does not pick or create the news but they certainly can pick the columnists whose views they wish to promote.The Nation newspaper’s choice is clear. They are clearly the lead soprano in Arthur’s political choir.


  13. @ clone
    The DLP should not discount the poll. Last time George Belle had the BLP winning and Wickham’s poll was right on the money.
    ************************************
    First time that I have know you to have spoken with sense and wisdom…wish you could transfer some the same to ac……notice she is nowhere to be found…..ac….come girl stop sulking..Onions told ya be prepared for the wilderness ever since January..now ya seein lil light..


  14. The seats I see being held, but none other are:

    – Kellman- Ronald Jones – Donville Inniss – Chris Sinckler – Michael Lashley – Stephen Lashley – Mara Thompson – Brathwaite

    I suspect both Stuart and Hammilton Lashley will have trouble holding their seats.

    But those could be the othet two held.


  15. Imagine Stuart managed to coral these fellows like bait fish …holding the DLP party in the midst of troubles…..The footsmen had NO BALLS…that what .Now Donville up in the media fight for he one seat….I hear housing Lashley calling out his name tonight on CBC…he better look to his own seat…take care..or is this a sign ? Watchin n waiting


  16. @Crusoe
    Hutson and Brathwaite aren’t sure seats by a long shot. Actually Hutson is due for an early retirement. Brathwaite will have to fight for his life.

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