The AX Matter Moves To The Next Phase

Commissioner Frederick Waterman – Photo Credit: Nation

The final arguments from lawyers representing all parties in the Alexandra School Dispute have been submitted and Barbadians await the report from lone Commissioner Frederick Waterman. It is obviously the report will be delivered before the September school term begins.

There was a sense by BU during the last two weeks of the Inquiry that it was hurried along; and for an obvious reason. The  first school term is scheduled to begin on the 10 September 2012 and given known timelines the Waterman Report will be late. Therefore the 64k question is – what will be the next phase of the AX Affair?

It is early days yet to evaluate the performance of the Alexandra Commission. However, BU is concerned the Commissioner made some questionable decisions which will impact the quality of the final report.  For example, it is understood from our sources that the aunt of Miss X whom we reported on another blog the student in the transcript affair was to go to live in the USA to facilitate school there, was in Barbados and prepared to give evidence. BU understands she was seized with interesting bits of information as a result of her visit to the school to which Miss X was to attend and where the transcript was allegedly sent by the secretary. Our source has advised that she had proof no such transcript was received by the US school. A reasonable conclusion to be made, the transcript was never sent. We have been reliably advised that Commissioner Waterman refused to allow this witness to be called.

One would have thought if the Commissioner had access to a witness who promised to clarify if any witness committed perjury, it would have been allowed in the interest of justice.

Another issue which the BU family should be apprised is that legal counsel representing the different parties at the AX Inquiry were granted different times for closing submissions. For example, Hal Gollop who represented the BSTU was allowed 1hr 20 minutes. Counsel for the Commission was allowed 2hrs 20 minutes. Vernon Smith and Cecil McCarthy who represented Broomes spoke for 30 minutes. Counsel for Keith Simmons was allowed 1hr plus. How was time allocation determined by the Commissioner?

It is interesting though that the Alexandra School Fourth Fourth orientation scheduled for this week has be pushed back to the opening day of the school term.

Follow the COI from the beginning (in descending order):

106 thoughts on “The AX Matter Moves To The Next Phase

  1. Will we see the fall of the Minister Jones?

    Will Stuart use Jones as a fall guy?

    But how can he if Jones’ seat is expected to remain DLP?

  2. David;
    Yuh certain uh de “facts” yuh have up dey? Dey don’ soun right to me.

    If they are true it would speak volumes of the fairness of the Commission or lack thereof. Indeed, it would also suggest that the sense and sensitivities of the Commission are likely to be seriously called into question in any litigation arising from the implementation of the report.

    If your disclosures above are verifiable and verified and the Commission is also able (against significant odds) to present and have a report pass all its stages before the next term starts, it would suggest to me that the report and its recommendations will not be able to stand in-depth public scrutiny.

    I hope wisdom prevails somewhere in the continuum between the Commission and the implementation of its recommendations.

  3. David

    You are not the only one that had the impression that the inquiry was hurried along in the last two weeks. Justice delayed is justice denied but rushing to get a judgment can also deny justice to those affected. This unseemly rush to reach a conclusion will affect the quality of the end product. Even though, I believe that the inquiry was a sham, a little more thought could have produced a sham that was convincing. As it stands now, nobody will have confidence in the outcome.

  4. Change must take place after this Inquiry.

    Jeff Broomes must be moved from the school.

    Some of those teachers must be reallocated.

    A teaching commission must be established.

    The ministry of education must be restructured and most of those education officers assigned to other ministries.

    Public sectpr reform must truly be alloed to take place for all civil servants.

  5. We all wait with bated breath. Enough has been said (and not said), done (and not done), committed (and omitted) to occupy our minds for many many months to come.

  6. David; Thinking a bit more about the disclosures in your chapeau. It may be possible that the aunt was not allowed to testify because the Commissioner had already decided to throw out the whole transcript falsification claim and needed no further information.

    Of course the allowance or allocations of such disparate times for the presentations by the lawyers for the various parties appears to be totally indefensible. Justice would certainly not have been seen to to have been done if it is true. I would like to see the justification by Caswell and ac and others for that.

    • @checkit-out

      On what grounds would the Commission toss out the transcript testimony? Can’t fathom the justification.

    • Please note the following GIS announcement:

      The public is advised that the deadline for the presentation of the written report of the Commission of the Inquiry into the Alexandra School has been changed from tomorrow, August 31.

      The report will now be presented on September 21 to the Governor General. The Governor General has authorised the change in the date for the submission of the written report in light of the fact that vital days’ hearings were lost to the Commission’s deliberations, due to the unavailability of the Wildey Gymnasium for three days in July because of prior bookings for Crop Over events, and the observance of two public holidays in August.

      Hearings were completed on Monday this week, with final submissions by Counsel yesterday, August 29.

      The Statutory Instrument SI no 70 authorising this change will be published in Gazette no 76 dated August 30, under the Commissions of Inquiry Act, CAP 112.

      Printed copies are expected to be available shortly. (Cabinet Office/BGIS)

  7. Caswell; I didn’t see your comment above when I wrote my own above. Glad to see that you thought that the last 2 weeks of evidence was a sham (and a rush job) even though you defended some aspects of it.

    This COI could have a number of unintended consequences, not the least of which might be the unexpected sullying of certain previously rock solid reputations.

  8. David; Re. your 6.23 pm comment;
    Didn’t QC Smith submit that it be thrown out? Wasn’t that the only portion of the revelations from the previous blog that was mentioned in the traditional press? Couldn’t the Commisioner have taken Smith’s pleading into account and decided to accede to them?

  9. David re. your 6.32 pm post;

    Very quick work.

    A testimony to what well paid highly qualified professionals can do when their noses are placed on the grindstone and adequate pay is available. It has to be a record!

    Hope that the example will be translated to the total Justice system and that the CJ is taking notes.

    David, BU needs to get a copy as soon as it is available.

  10. Jeff Broomes is now officially the most expensive Head Master ever to tap into the public’s purse and to think he has a retirement package pending. The power that a Prime Minister has to just up and call for a COI is one of MANY that should be contained, particularly when a population is faced with an individual who is developing a track record of indecisiveness …! (It must be something in the atmosphere in that constituency…)

  11. If it was me, I would call for a judicial enquiry into the COI. And please don’t try to tell me that this cannot be done. IT CAN!!! And I suspect that it will. So far, we have heard nothing from Broomes’ union. But I would not lay any odds whatever on that continuing. As Observing pointed out, the rat shit is only just starting.

  12. It does not matter what the Commission writes or says.

    It does not matter what changes are made to the Education Act.

    It does not matter whether or not we establish a teaching Commission.

    If we remain the same bad minded, petty Bajans we will forever have the same results.

    We have looked in the mirror.

    And the problem is us.

  13. @David “For example, it is understood from our sources that the aunt of Miss X whom we reported on another blog the student in the transcript affair was to go to live in the USA to facilitate school there, was in Barbados and prepared to give evidence. BU understands she was seized with interesting bits of information as a result of her visit to the school to which Miss X was to attend and where the transcript was allegedly sent by the secretary. Our source has advised that she had proof no such transcript was received by the US school. A reasonable conclusion to be made, the transcript was never sent.”


    I would have thought that the Commissioner cannot hear from the aunt as her testimony might well be hearsay.

    I would not be at all surprised if the Commission has heard directly from the school.

    The truth is unless the aunt had been appointed the legal guardian of the minor, she CANNOT access the minor’s school application record and documents. It just doan work so. Would you want friends and relatives, even close relatives to have access to your child’s school records?

    Most reasonable people would understand the aunt to be a biased witness.

    • If the Commissioner has heard directly from the school should it not have been brought out in the testimony? How can you presume the nature of the evidence of the aunt unless she was allowed to bring her testimony?

  14. Simple Simon | August 31, 2012 at 3:46 AM |


    Ergo, much truth in that statement. Commissions, Act changes etc cannot change ‘cultural’ issues, issues or structural and process failures and work ethic.

    Similar to the legal case backlog.

    Simple Simon above pointed out the real issue. It is NOT Jeff Broomes.

    The structure, process and culture failed and will fail again, with another master, with another area.

  15. Simple Simon; Surely you jest.

    Have you counted how many “witnesses” were allowed to give hearsay evidence AGAINST Broomes? But perhaps you are saying that if it was for Broomes it was hearsay, if it was against him, it was OK.

    Therein might lie the tragedy of this COI

    Amused may be right.

  16. @BAF BAFBFP | August 30, 2012 at 9:13 PM |
    Jeff Broomes is now officially the most expensive Head Master ever to tap into the public’s purse and to think he has a retirement package pending.

    I sympathise with your angst over the money spent, but really it is the Ministry at fault.

    If most of us xxx up at work, our bosses must ensure that we cannot any more.

    Who is Broomes’ boss?

    The Ministry. Nuff said.

    I aint got nuh time fuh commission dis and dat, Lotta BS. The Ministry is at fault, first, second and third. done!

    But as you say, nuh one cyan mek a decision. Evuhbody scared tuh stick neck out. Dah en muh responsubility. I does tek muh money en guh home pun a dey.

    Lotta xhite.

  17. Really, as BAF says, when a bus driver flies along the road at 90+mph, or a customs officer doan do nuh work etc, we going have a COI for each one?

    Nuh? Where is the xxxing responsibility and process to ensure that things get done properly and in accordance with some semblance of normalcy?

    Look, two things

    1) Did the Broomes make the statement against the teacher at the annual Speech Day?

    2) Was it trrue or not?

    THAT is where all this was hinged.

    So, answer those two questions

    If (1) true but not (2) fire Broomes.

    If (1) AND (2) true fire the teacher.

    All I see is character assination etc. What are the facts?


    Lotta xhite in trute.

  18. It will be very interesting to find out how BU became aware of the time taken by counsel when the press reported that no visitors were allowed in . Has the integrity been compromised ? You should next explain whether you consider the question of the aunt receiving a falsified transcript of greater importance than the FACT that the transcript WAS FALSIFIED ..

  19. @ David

    I suspect the COI had another purpose, it was an opportunity for the PM to get a recommendation from an independent party to remove Ronald (Puss-In-Boots) Jones from the Cabinet.

    When the PM fires Puss-In-Boots he will kill two birds (every one knows RJ is a ladybird) first will be the ring leader of the Eager 11 and the second will be Broomes.

    What a better way to show the public you are both decisive, powerful and a man to keep his word, remember ‘heads will rolls’

  20. @Ping Pong et al

    Leaders must be creative. The principal recognizing that some students were not preenting there sba because they claimed that they could not afford the cost,, held discussions with parents who agreed to pool resources, whereby students would be allowed three printing for their sba, before submission. Would you want to depive those students the opportunity, or would you agree to pooling resources.

    Thats all i will say at this stage. Only one parent did not agree. The pinting of sba assignments fall to the student at not the school.

  21. On the question of the allocation of times, it should perhaps be understood that counsel for the Commission got roughly 2 hrs for his submission (in the interest of being comprehensive), other interests (BSTU, Principal, Board) got roughly 1 hr each. Principal’s 1 hr was split between 2 counsel. These verbal presentation were preceded (I hope) and supported by the actual written submissions of counsel.

  22. I am glad and sad at the same time that this COI was set up. Glad because it highlighted some of the problems with the education system of Barbados. I am sad, however, because it has has enforced the fact more and more of how anti-teacher this society is. In primary school whatever the teacher says is gospel to the children (in most cases anyway) but once they reach secondary level it is suddenly a battle between teacher, student and parent. The problems at schools are real. The teachers at AX took a bold step to come and pour their hearts out after many years of practical silence. But the things were so incredible that people are now saying the teachers didn’t want to work and they’re out to assassinate a good man’s character. Some people have even gone as far as to say the teachers are making up stories. Then people keep harping on the non-teaching issue, even though evidence has been given from more than one witness that Mrs. Greaves did in fact teach the class for some time. Even one of the witnesses who spoke on Broomes behalf admitted that her brother (a student in the class) said that Mrs. Greaves did teach the class at some time.

    I find that some of the comments lack balance. Even though it might be hard to believe that a well-known and respected public could be capable of exhibiting such deplorable attitudes and be downright unfair and vindictive, I do not believe that experienced and hard-working individuals would sit down and make these things up for the sake of a story. I think we are being unfair to the teachers at AX and indeed across the island because we simply cannot believe that one person can have two sides. There are many people in this society who have two sides, they are nice and sweet and generous in public but when they get home or are in the offices behind closed doors they are something totally different. I use to think that teaching was a noble profession but of late our society has lost that respect for teachers. The older generation of teachers try to keep things professional and respectable. Some of the younger generation and their fete mentality have very little respect for standards as teachers. We are too hypocritical in that we often criticise young teacher for tattoos and short skirts, tight pants and low waste, yet we say the “old hens” just miserable and stuck in their ways when they try to maintain certain standards.

    For too long teachers have been unfaired and they choose to do nothing but bide their time or move on to another school where they still butt up on another set of issues to deal with. And we as a society sit back and say oh, if you can’t get along with your boss find another job. We refuse to deal with issues at hand preferring instead to sweep them under the carpet and hope that they would go away. If more teachers were to come out and talk about the unfair practices and treatment at their individual schools then we would be forced to face the facts. But at some schools reputation is more important than dealing with issues head on. Just what has happened here with no one believing the teachers, except those who really know the situation or the persons first hand, will discourage more teachers from speaking out. But perhaps that’s the way we like it as a society; we prefer to hear all is well rather than the truth of the matter.

    The attitude of the society says: “That is wunna business; if wunna suffering I don’t care, as long as my child is being taught I don’t give a damn about your mental health, physical health or whatever problems wunna got; just teach my child.” A highly individualistic society. Don’t you understand that the less pressure the teachers are under the better it is for the teaching/learning environment? Instead of the parents lobbying to get the teacher transferred they should have been lobbying for the problems to be addressed at all schools. Moving one or a few persons is but a drop in the sea of confusion and corruption in our education system because when you move some and replace them with others, you will still have problems if things are not corrected. Teachers are human beings, not robots and they think and ask questions. The same rights everybody else has as a worker they have too. I hope you guys get where I am coming from cause you will now find some smart person to pick up on one sentence and just miss the whole picture. Stop living in denial and agitate for change in the system. Stop attacking the teachers and try to help them help your children. Stop disrespecting teachers in front of the children. If you have something to say about or to the teacher and it is not good do not do it in front of the child. We all want what is best for our children and if we do not do something about the problems at ALL the schools then we will have hell to pay later.

  23. Let me. Ask the elephant in the room question. What happens monday morning at 9:00 am when Jeff and all teachers report to Alexandra for the first working day of school? I won’t even bother going into tension, conflict or disputes during the commission. Are we really going to send these 50 odd teachers, the embattled principal, the aggrieved deputy and the mess that we have witnessed back there? Even if only for 18 days til a report is laid???

    This my friends is the real tragedy.

    • @observing

      It should be easy to imagine that offline conversations have or are about to take place between the MOE and Broomes et al.

  24. @Maxine

    Whilst I agree with a lot of what you are saying, I think the teachers also need to take a long, hard look at why they have garnered so little public sympathy.

    Some of it has to do with the leadership of Ms Redman who needs to stop addressing the public as though we were all naughty seven year-olds – a more measured, adult tone would go an awful long way in helping to progress the BSTU’s case.

    Some of it has to do with the facts of the matter – after all the evidence the perception remains that the striking teachers were a group of ex-Ax scholars who were unable to accept the fact that Ms Neblett-Lashley was not Principal and did their utmost to frustrate the appointed Principal from the get-go.

    Some of it has to do with the public’s own perception of teachers – we all went to school, most of us deal with our children’s teachers. There are good teachers, bad teachers, committed teachers, indifferent teachers etc; etc;. But I could tell you many,many parents are pissed off at having to pay for extra lessons because their children are not being taught the syllabus in class, pissed off at teachers that insist on a “Professional Day” during term time and use it to shop in Miami, pissed off at teachers that pick and choose their favourites in a class and teach accordingly. And just as the teachers have kept their grievances silent for so many years, the parents tend to keep silent too for fear their child is victimised. The academic results coming out of the secondary schools are universally pitiful and nobody should be proud of that. The fact that a headmaster who was prepared to confront the teachers and insist on certain matters has received so much support, given his obvious deficiencies in many other matters, must tell you something.

    Let’s hope the Commission has some strong recommendations.

  25. Some parents send their children to lessons for reinforcement purposes because with all the classes being so large, sometimes it is difficult in the classroom. I wouldn’t blame the teachers solely for not finishing the syllabus. If you see the syllabi you would understand how difficult it is to actually finish a syllabus. There are good and bad teachers but I would also say there are good and bad students and parents too and each entity has to bear some responsibility. Another thing, everybody wants everything taught in schools and more and more lessons allocated to subjects are being cut to introduces new ideas such as (as we heard) Real Life Options, Critical Thought and Acceptable Expression (English) and Diet and Healthy Lifestyles (Food and Nutrition). So to blame the teachers solely for the inability to finish a syllabus is wrong.

    You people insult the intelligence and rights of those persons who are not AX-old scholars. A lot was said in this COI but not all was said. If you people were a fly on the wall of the AX school and in particular the office of the principal, wunna would hang wunna heads in shame. But you know what? It matters not what is explained you guys would find some other plaster for every other sore. For all the bad teachers out there y’all lump everyone together and label most as lazy and indifferent. Y’all believe what y’all want to believe and hear what wunna want to hear.

  26. Observing; re your suggestion of the real tragedy being all the conflicted actors going back to school on Monday with their dirty underwear exposed for all to see.

    It will be only three weeks before the COI report is laid with the GG. Perhaps one partial solution to one part of the problem would be to postpone the opening of the School for 2 or 3 weeks. That time might allow alternative arrangements to be started and for the minimal appearance of due process to be given when they take the preordained steps that must be taken before the Children and Teachers start the new term.

  27. @Simple Simon | August 31, 2012 at 3:56 AM. Two quotes from you:

    “I would have thought that the Commissioner cannot hear from the aunt as her testimony might well be hearsay.”

    1. The rules of evidence do not apply in a commission of inquiry. Therefore, hearsay is admissible. And, moreover, it has repeatedly been admitted in this commission.

    2. You say in the above quote, “I would have thought…..” That is opinion evidence which, under the rules of evidence, is also inadmissible. But not before a commission of inquiry.

    “I would not be at all surprised if the Commission has heard directly from the school.” And you surmise this……….HOW? And you think that the Commission (which is a public inquiry) has the right to withhold such information…….WHY? What if the aunt had a letter from the school that she proposed to introduce that no letter had arrived from Alexandra?

    “The truth is unless the aunt had been appointed the legal guardian of the minor, she CANNOT access the minor’s school application record and documents.” If you had a single iota of honesty, you would have continued to say, “without a written authorisation from the parent (while the girl was a minor) or from the girl herself (now she is not a minor). And it DOES work that way, and I am NOT asking you, I am TELLING you. But you know that, which makes your whole submission a lie. Like the Sealey and Lashley “evidence”.

    “Most reasonable people would understand the aunt to be a biased witness.” Most reasonable people would understand no such thing. Most reasonable people would give the aunt the benefit of the doubt, rather like Sealey and Lashley were given the benefit of the doubt, until they proved to be perjurers.

    @ Just wondering | August 31, 2012 at 7:13 AM. “It will be very interesting to find out how BU became aware of the time taken by counsel when the press reported that no visitors were allowed in . Has the integrity been compromised?” The integrity of the Commission was compromised by many things, not least excluding the press and public from counsels’ summations. Not one of the favoured ones allowed in are under ANY obligation WHATSOEVER to go along with the in camera requirements of the Commissioner. They can, in effect, tell the Commissioner (of whom I am so ashamed it hurts) to go and kiss his own backside. Then call for a judicial review. And that is precisely what I would do. Tell Waterman to contort and pucker up and get ready for the judicial review that now seems inevitable, thanks to him.

    @ Bus Driver | August 31, 2012 at 10:24 AM. I agree. 100%!

  28. @check it out
    It is a matter of grave import, especially considering the 800 plus children who witnessed their “mentors” and “role models” behaving worse than children and politley cussing each other. I believe any amount of time with the status quo as it was will drive a deeper wedge into the problem. Somebody needs to speak. Parents, unions, teachers and Barbados are watching…

  29. @Bus Driver:
    Smooth riding. Maxine is still not on board though.

    @ Maxine
    If teachers want sympathy they should show parents respect and do not lump all of us in the same barrell. We all take our children to school and live upright, law abiding lives obeying the rules.

    Principals and teachers treat parents of unfavoured (average and below average grade) children like convicts serving time, note not like ex-convicts. So Maxine, read what Bus Driver said again.

    We don’t want to be a fly on the wall – if you want full support be consistent with your colleagues when addressing parents and teach each child like each has a molecule of sense.

    And, Maxine, DO TELL MARY address, approach the public with respect because the TEACHERS are being assessed based on her poor attitude and manner.

  30. Observer;

    I agree it is a matter of grave import. I can’t see how the authorities could expect harmonious relations between the various protagonists if they are placed together willy nilly next week after the rather acrimonious exchanges of the last 2 months. That is why I suggested that a partial solution might be to pospone AX reopening for at least 2 weeks, but more reasonably three, and in that period to quickly work out as even handed a solution as is possible under the circumstances.

    Given the manner in which the COI was set up and its antecedents and quirky implementation, It is almost quite evident, that despite the essential rough balance in the pro and con evidence, there will be a separation of broomes. But a significant number of AX teachers and other staff as well as most senior students there will not agree with that solution alone and may show their displeasure. In addition I can’t see how the principal’s union could easily accept any action that punishes Mr. Broomes and leaves the other parties at the School. Therefore imho there might also need to be a separation from the school of a number of the other teacher players. Three come to mind, Ms. Greaves, the Deputy and Mr. Lett, and there may be others.

    The reforms in the education act and the MOE are absolutely necessary but could be more long term.

    There will probably be a lot of horse trading over the next few weeks. The children and the teachers should not be at AX during that period.

  31. Oh and the principal is always the caring and understanding one who greets and treats parents with respect. Try telling that to the young lady who the principal told to go home and tell her parents they are idiots. Tell that to the parent who came to the school to seek about a long-standing matter and was chased off the premises with the head teacher behind her making provocative comments. Tell that to the parents of children whose CXC results came back with a blatant error and the principal refused to query the results (which is customary for the school to do on students’ behalf) and told the children they would either stick with what they have or pay for the query themselves.

    But I guess Broomes was apologising to parents so that makes what he did alright. I am sure you would be in-censed if your boss was to criticise your work in front of your juniours and customers. Is is so hard to believe that Jeff Broomes is not what he says he is? And if you and your children suffer in silence because you don’t want your child to be victimised, the teachers have been suffering too long and couldn’t hold it anymore. You need to speak up for your children and not take crap that you see happening. Investigate the matter on all sides first, gather your evidence and then go to the relevant authorities. You might be surprised that the teachers would be very careful when it comes to dealing with your child. And if you vise that there is victimisation going on, do what you have to do.

    Wunna saying that I missing the point but I am showing the alternate side as to why things happen in schools. I know how the public loves to hate teachers mainly because they think they get too much time home. Some people never stop to think that teaching is a 24-hr job with planning and marking to be done. Oh man, teachers are a bunch of glorified babysitters. I never said that the teachers are blameless and would never say that. Half of us think we have angels but some children play the fool in class and make things very difficult in the classroom then run home and tell their side of the story. There are some teachers who do not know what the hell they are doing and most of that comes with a lack of training and re-training. Some teachers couldn’t care less if “Sundee come pun a Mondee”. Some of them are just there for the pay check, studying or just finished studying, looking to use teaching as a filler until “something better” comes along. But there are others who are dedicated to their job and beyond. Just as there are parents who pay rapt attention to their children’s education, there are others who show very little other than when the report comes home and they want to challenge the teacher. This is borne out in the pitiful attendance of parents at PTA meetings. I went to a meeting where there were more parents than children. If we are really serious about our children’s education, picking up and dropping off wouldn’t cut it. Show some support at PTA meetings. Go and humbug the executive about matters you have and let them work on your behalf. The way I see some PTA executives is that they are just organising social evenings for a few parents and teachers. Once the children get into secondary school you see a decline in parent involvement as they go from level to level, with the fifth year being the worst. Schools have year level meetings and less than half the parents turn up the higher the level. Secondary school is the time that your children need your support because there are new factors that affect them – new faces, new subjects, drugs, sex, different extra-curricular activities. There are parents who will call teachers from time to time to ask about their child’s behaviour and performance, take their children to activities and so on. So while we acknowledge this can’t we acknowledge that there are committed teachers in the schools too. Everything cannot be explained in the classroom and not every child will grasp thing readily. That is why extra lessons may be important so they get the individual attention. And parents, if you send your child to lessons make sure it has not more than 10 children in the lessons class otherwise you might as well not send them because they will not get individualised attention. I have heard nightmare stories of parents who make that mistake.

    Btw, I guess all the board members are AX old scholars, and so are the office staff and the axillary staff cause that seems to be only the old scholars who have problems with Broomes. Oh, and they are all meeting secretly and conspiring against him; they all want to assassinate his character. I say well done, it was a perfect plan but Broomes was able to dodge every bullet they shot at him by refuting and explaining everything said about him. Why, he is the consummate saviour of the children against those dreadful teachers who want to stifle progress in the school (never mind the service they’ve put in before). And the public will be so grateful to him for his outstanding work in protecting the future of our nation. Bravo! Bravo! Bravo!

  32. And Observing; I don’t see how they could contemplate putting the protagonists back to work together before the submission of the COI report. Thus they can’t reasonably take any action against Broomes or anybody else before the report is laid. So starting the school next week with the current staff in place should be a no-no.

    The only sensible, but hard, decision to take would be to postpone the opening of the School as I stated above. However, it would appear that such is unlikely.


      I saw that part of the evidence of the Chief Personnel Officer on television and quite frankly, I was appalled that the person who is charged to administer the rules that relate to discipline in the Public Service seem not to be familiar with those rules. I don’t think that she perjured herself: I think that she is incompetent and aught to be replaced.

  33. @Crusoe at 6:01 a.m. “Simple Simon above pointed out the real issue. It is NOT Jeff Broomes.”

    Please do NOT put words in my mouth.

    I pointed out that bad mindedness is endemic. I did NOT say that Jeff Broomes is not badminded.

    And I’ve said before and I’ll say again Jeff is the principal author of his misfortunes

  34. @bmcdonald and caswell
    Can she act on something which has not been laid before her to act on? I once again refer to the contents of the BSTU’s letter to the CPO. The wording of that correspondence is the only thing that would give credence to your (sarcastic) criticism of her. If any of you are privy to it please share.

    @check it out
    Common sense and reason seldom prevail when tough decisions have to be made. 30 bstu teachers will be forced to work next to 20 “yes men” non striking teachers. Juniors will work next to seniors who publicly criticised them. The deputy will supervise teachers who “bad talked” her. Students will go in class with teachers they now have zero respect for and JEFF BROOMES WILL STILL BE THE PRINCIPAL, until Sept 22 at the bare minimum.

    You speak with passion. Good thoughts and suggestions are in between your deep breaths. Breathe easier, your contributions are yet worthwhile in the grand scheme of things. By the way, barbados does not take home-school relations as serious and proactively as it should, the reasons for which and the benefits lost as a result are too much for this post.

    Walk good.

    • Observing

      I could not believe my ears when the CPO said in evidence before the inquiry words to the effect that the BSTU should not have written to her because she was not responsible for industrial relations in the Public Service. After I stop laughing, my next reaction was: is she mad?

      The BSTU complained about Broomes’ behaviour: in essence they were making an allegation of misconduct to the Ministry of Education. The Ministry should then have investigated the matter and forward their findings to the Public Service Commission through the CPO. Discipline is in the purview of the Public Service Commission in accordance with section 94 of the Constitution, and the CPO is the conduit to them.

      The Ministry failed to do its duty by not dealing with the complaints of the teachers at Alexandra that were made through their union. The only place left to go would have been the CPO who should have forwarded the complaint, with or without recommendations to the PSC. Instead, she did nothing and was partly, in no small way, responsible for the resulting mess. I say again without fear of enlightened contradiction that the problems at Alexandra resulted from political interference in the Public Service and from the incompetence at the level of the Chief Personnel Officer.

  35. Observing;
    I suspect that you are totally correct in what you say above. But this situation calls for significant dollops of sensitivity in the implementation of whatever solution the Commissioner comes up with and whatever aspects of it is implemented by the relevant Ministries of Government. Remember that the PM was quite open in the somewhat contemptuous way he treated with the Minister of Education when he was invited to and took over leadership of the AX matter. That Ministry will now be called on to take on a very important role in cleaning up the AX mess including its own very significant contribution to the mess. Can Mr. Jones clean up that Ministry or should it really require someone else in that position to transparently undertake and effect that job? Can the current CPO do the necessary? Will the COI report speak to Industrial relations at Schools? Will the PM continue to praise the BSTU and its leadership after the 21st September?

    I fear that this story can end quite messily unless Broomes is somehow persuaded to willingly and quietly ride into the sunset, perhaps even well before the 21st September.

    Sensitivity might be the key here.

  36. @check it out
    This story WILL end messily.

    Agreed, politics is the root of this problem. But, have to ask again in fairness to the incompetence of the CPO. Did the BSTU letter to the her request an investigation into or lay out a case of misconduct by Broomes (and by extension the Ministry and their failures and bad faith)? If it did not, or, if it specified an ultimatum, then my point that Atkins had nothing “official” to act on remains valid regardless of what we may think. Have to ask you bluntly and hope for a response: Are you aware of the contents of the letter from the BSTU to the CPO?

    Just observing

  37. One other little piece of information from out of the COI. NO TRANSCRIPTS OF THE COMMISSION’S HEARING ARE AVAILABLE FOR THE LAST 7 DAYS OF THE HEARING!!!!! They were made readily available to counsel before, until 7 days before the end of the hearing.

    The fact that this coincides with the Broomes side of the story and the perjury by Merlene Sealey supported by the Lashley woman is, I feel, interesting.

    This was supposed to be a showcase by which it could be demonstrated that Barbados takes these matters seriously and by which JUSTICE could not only be done, but be seen to have been done. And what do we end up with?

    1. Before the commission was mooted, there were meetings held with the MoE by Broomes’ counsel. And do you know these were adjourned because the MoE not only did not have legal counsel present, but had not bothered to take a legal opinion.

    2. Within days, the Commissioner was beginning to demonstrate a bias which many thought was a tactic to get at the truth. However, it very quickly became apparent that the Commisssioner was not using any tactic at all.

    3. There was phone-hacking and the Commission asked that it be kept secret, to which all agreed, only to read it in the pages of the Nation. This was under investigation by the Police and rumour has it that the hacked person, Mr Broomes, has been asked by the Police to defend himself against charges that he hacked his own telephone. BUT, as I say, that is only rumour at this stage.

    4. Then Merlene Sealey purported to have given a document to Deputy Principal Lashley at the school back in 2004, but has failed to state WHEN in 2004……and why would “when in 2004” be relevant? Because Lashley was not at the school between 2004 and 2008.

    5. But in any case, this point is not relevant, because after intially backing Sealey, Lashley now claims that she took the document down off the school computer system in September 2012.

    6. Meanwhile, Sealey purports to have sent the document ( presumably signed by Broomes) to a “University in the States”, except she does not remember which university, the name of the university is not on the document, there is no covering letter and there is no record in the school’s mail book of it ever being sent.

    7. Meanwhile the father of the student in question states that he had contemplated sending his daughter to live with an aunt in the Boston area and to attend school in the States – not university, SCHOOL!! He further stated in evidence under oath and plans were changed, the girl remained in Barbados and did not go to the States AND THE LETTER MERLENE SEALEY CLAIMS WAS SENT, NEVER ARRIVED AT THE SCHOOL. Anb Broomes claims that he never authorised the document, did not sign it and never asked that is be sent and, in fact, has never seen it.

    8. Broomes’ counsel asks that the aunt be called to provide evidence that no such letter was received by the school, but Commissioner Waterman declines to allow her to give evidence.

    9. Then if comes to time for counsel’s summations. The transcripts for the final 7 days of the COI are, predictably, unavailable so that, in summation, counsel can refer to the transcript in both their summation briefs and in the actual summations. Not that this effects the Commission’s counsel or the counsel for BSTU, because the evidence adduced in the last 7 days are such that they would rather have disappear.

    10. Then the Commission orders (most improperly) that the summations should be heard in camera. Further that each parties counsel will be allowed one hour. Broome’s counsel is cut off after an hour. Hal Gollop goes on for an hour and 20 minutes and the Commission’s counsel for over 2 hours. In the midst of this, counsel for Broomes is seen storming out of the Commission in protest at this inequality.

    So, it is entirely fair to say that we now await the filing of proceedings for a judicial review. If (WHEN) such proceedings are filed, then the Commission will have spectacularly and very publicly failed at enormous cost to the taxpayers. And Miller will have been proved, once again, to be right!!!

    But what the hell. Waterman, having collected enormous fees for his role as Commissioner, can now retire to complete his book on the etiquette of pitching marbles.

    Pathetic bunch of tossers.

    • Amused

      I think that you are getting confused. It would be better if you stood back from the evidence and analyse it without bias. Firstly, there were two documents purporting to be transcripts: one handwritten by Broomes and the other one that was taken from the school’s computer which was made up from the one that Broomes produced.

      It does not matter when the deputy received the handwritten document: it is clear that Broomes concocted it for mal intent. When the handwritten document was first produced, they denied that it was Broomes’ handwriting. Guyson Mayers then suggested that they obtain the services of a handwriting expert. Just before the expert was to be called, Broomes’ lawyers admitted that it was in fact Broomes’ handwriting.

      The story then changed to the document being produced as a result of a telephone call with the deputy at Combermere. Broomes team then offered to get a transcript from Combermere but the commissioner refused preferring to contact Combermere through the commission. When the transcript arrived from Combermere, the marks did not match and that was explained that the marks are upgraded to convert for US purposes. Now ask yourself, why would they upgrade Combermere marks for US purposes if there was no intent to send the transcript to the US. We were told that the transcript was intended to assist in the admission to a catholic school, and that is why there were marks for Religous Knowledge for three years when in fact the student did that subject for only one year. Those fictitious Religous Knowledge marks were on the handwritten document produced by Broomes.

      That evidence is so damning to Broomes that his lawyers had to cast doubt on it by trying to discredit the secretary and deputy. In my opinion they were unable to discredit those two since they merely concentrated on peripheral parts of the evidence.

  38. I did not offer any sarcastic criticism of the CPO’s testimony which was portrayed in the traditional media as dispassionate. I am rather stating that the CPO’s position as reflected in her testimony is dispositive of this matter.

  39. Caswell were you not involved in advising BSTU at the stage when they sent the matter to the CPO and subsequently went on strike?

    …don’t you think that you are experiencing a conflict of interest here?
    ……just asking….!

    • Bush Tea

      I do not know where you got that from but I was not involved in advising the BSTU at the stage of writing the letter or at any other time. Mind you, when they were on strike, I passed by their headquarters and showed solidarity with them.

      When they delivered the letter to the CPO, I happened to be at there on a completely different matter and when I was leaving, the BSTU delegation arrived and of course I stayed around and gave moral support.

      I was at the Personnel Administration Division to review some files that the High Court ordered to be turned over in a case that I have an interest. Without going in to too much detail, a number of environmental health assistants have taken the Government to court over their appointment. It would appear that their names were on a list of persons, sent from the Ministry of Health, to be appointed. However, when the appointments were made their names were excluded and the name of the son of the senior personnel officer and one other was substituted. Mind you, his son was not eligible for appointment but the commission was deceived.

  40. @Caswell
    I am not au courant with the protocol of the Service but I am thinking that after the MOE’s failure to settle to the satisfaction of the warring sides,that the next move would be to send the matter not to the CPO but to the Ministry of the Civil Service which minister is the PM.

  41. Caswell boy I gotta agree with Bushie’s December statement. you should have pleaded the 5th on this issue and kept out of it…on BU at least.
    Your objectivity, consistency and claims of searching for only the truth come into question via selective responses, seeming holes in explanations and a deduction process that wouldn’t pass the light of day with other scenarios or issues. Your knowledge and opinions are respected, admired and appreciated but your bias (at best) conflict of interest (at worst) is subtly glaring. You can prove me wrong by answering
    a) did the deputy actually receive the handwritten transcript in 2004?
    b) was a transcript actually sent?
    c) did the girl actually go to the USA (though this was denied by her father)
    d) Did the 2012 computer copy (which should be the final one) have on the University and correct personal information for the girl on it?

    All this should have been revealed under cross-examination by Smith/McCarthy, the witnessing and facts of which you haven’t quite confirmed as yet.

    when you start bad you end bad. This Commission now makes Commissions look bad in addition to education, trade unionism, politicians, the teaching profession and the Ministry.

  42. Gabriel Tackle

    When the matter is not resolved at the level of the Ministry of Education, it would only be referred to the Ministry of the Civil Service if the matter was one of conditions of service. If the matter dealt with misconduct it should go to the CPO for transmission to the PSC who is responsible for discipline in accordance with section 94 of the Constitution.

  43. @Gabriel
    The CPO was chosen because a set and pre-determined course of action (ultimatum) was desired (demanded) by the BSTU and she would have to be the person to enact it.

  44. @ Caswell

    Thanks for the clarification.
    Look Caswell! Bushie will be frank with you.
    The bushman is of the opinion that this matter is just a bunch on nonsense that is actually well beneath your level. Unfortunately, it has, and always had, the potential to do significant damage to your credibility as you seek to defend your natural allies.
    IT IS NOT WORTH IT!! You are much too valuable to this country in many much more important ways….- and your credibility is CENTRAL to that value.

    This is a simple matter of management incompetence in dealing with a simple case of employee discipline, a slightly more challenging case of management arrogance on the part of the Principal, and a useless Board.

    As is common in 95% of all organizations in Barbados, this incompetence goes ALL THE WAY TO THE TOP.

    …..why do you think that mediocre Trinidadians, Canadians, Irishmen, Guyanese and whosoever else can come here and find themselves running things…?

    The solution to Barbados’s problems lie in someone getting to the root of the national cancer. That cancer is associated with a deep rooted political and administrative dishonesty which leads to the placement of square pegs in round holes across the whole sphere of the island; It leads to the placement of personal and family interests ahead of national interest; it places secrecy and bribery ahead of transparency and openness.

    As the Bushman has been saying (well BEFORE you even came on this Blog) you are the ideal doctor to deal with this cancer. Bushie has also carefully proposed a methodology by which you can perform this operation BY THE NEXT ELECTION.

    …PLEASE do not go trying to treat this AX Ebola case without proper protective equipment and cause Barbados to lose any chance of dealing with the more critical national cancer…..

    ….leave the ebola to Amused….. 🙂

  45. @Amused “8. Broomes’ counsel asks that the aunt be called to provide evidence that no such letter was received by the school, but Commissioner Waterman declines to allow her to give evidence.”

    But Amused, surely as a lawyer you can see why the aunt cannot give evidence on behalf of the school. The Commissioner should have contacted the school directly. And received the evidence directly from the school.

    The aunt does not work for the school and so cannot testify as to what documents are held on file at the school.

    Unless the aunt had been appointed legal guardian of the minor child, there is no way that the school will give her access to the student’s academic records.

    You are hot shot lawyer and and I am only a Simple Simon, so I know that you would have to know these things.

  46. @ Bush Tea | September 1, 2012 at 11:35 AM |
    “The solution to Barbados’s problems lie in someone getting to the root of the national cancer. That cancer is associated with a deep rooted political and administrative dishonesty which leads to the placement of square pegs in round holes across the whole sphere of the island; It leads to the placement of personal and family interests ahead of national interest; it places secrecy and bribery ahead of transparency and openness.”

    Very sound principle which any right thinking and honest person would subscribe to without hesitation. We expect the same from its author and we will surely hold you to it, Bushie.

  47. @Observing (…) | September 1, 2012 at 11:09 AM. I was about to respond to Casewell, but I have nothing to add to what you have said. And I agree – when you start bad, you end bad.

    @Bush Tea | September 1, 2012 at 11:35 AM. Agree with your general observations, but am not persuaded as far as Casewell’s potential goes yet. His views lack transparent consistency, BUT, that said, if it was up to me, I would give him a chance. I agree that he has a role to play and that role would certainly be helped by taking your advice. Whether it is a major role or not remains to be seen. As for the ebola, well, someone has to deal with it and I have no problem being that person and I am glad to have your support.

    @Simple Simon | September 1, 2012 at 2:22 PM. Disagree completely the aunt most certainly could attest to the receipt or non receipt of the document from the school in the USA, if she had something official from the school stating that no such letter or document had been received from AX. Indeed, given that this is an inquiry, not a trial and therefore the rules of evidence as they apply to a court process do not apply to the Commission, the aunt could have given evidence that she had spoken to the school and that such and such a person had told her that no such letter/document was received and that if the Commission chose to write to the school seeking confirmation in writing that the document was not received, the school would be happy to provide it. AND THUS THE COMMISSION WOULD HAVE THE NAME OF THE SCHOOL WHICH SEALEY ALLEGES SHE HAS (CONVENIENTLY) FORGOTTEN!!!! So we have to seriously ask ourselves WHY the Commission would not wish to have this evidence and the name of the school before it? Could it be that if it did, it would be forced to send a report to the DPP recommending criminal prosecution for perjury?

    What staggers and disappoints me frankly is that counsel for the BSTU and the Commission agreed to allow this document in as evidence in the first place. What were they thinking of? If I had had a hand in it, I would have ensured that I had all my ducks in a row: (a) photocopy of the document with Broomes’ signature on it; (b) cover letter; (c) proof of postage; and (d) I would have written to the school asking it to provide me a copy of the document as received by it with its stamp for receipt (they do actually stamp correspondence for receipt in the USA). AND, if I did not have at least (a) and (b), I would not have introduced the evidence in the first place. It looks fraudulent, conspired and contrived.

  48. @Caswell
    Thank you for your input.I submit for your comment that both grievances smacked of conditions of service.The first issue in 2006 when Broome sought to dock the teacher’s (or teachers)pay for going on a joyride instead of attending a set forum for Teachers Professional Day (or by whatever name its known.)Secondly,the failure of Amaida Greaves to teach as paid to do,smacks of a failure to adhere to her conditions of service.In my ignorance(cf latin ignosco and not the bajan derivative)I suggest that both cases should have been properly before the PS Ministry of the Civil Service for resolution.

    • Gabriel Tackle

      When you breach your conditions of service, most likely you would have committed an offence which would subject you to disciplinary action. The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of the Civil Service has no role in a disciplinary matter unless he is dealing with an officer in his ministry or he is appointed to be a member of an investigatory committee by the PSC in accordance with paragraph 6 of the Code of Discipline in the Public Service.

      You suggested that Mrs. Greaves would have failed to adhere to her conditions of service if she did not teach. If and only if that were the case, she would have committed an act of misconduct in accordance with paragraph 2 (q) of the Code of Discipline and could have been dismissed. As a head of department, Mr. Broomes could have suspended her and refer the matter to the Chief Personnel Officer in accordance with paragraph 4 (2) of the same code.

    • @Caswell

      Have we not discussed this matter several times by opining on what the lack of precedent would have had?

  49. When the matter is not resolved at the level of the Ministry of Education, it would only be referred to the Ministry of the Civil Service if the matter was one of conditions of service. If the matter dealt with misconduct it should go to the CPO for transmission to the PSC who is responsible for discipline in accordance with section 94 of the Constitution.


  50. Agree with JUST ASKING.
    …..clearly this is a system designed to for Inaction and time wasting.
    It facilitates the protection of incompetents – which is needed if you have square pegs in round holes.

    How we can continue to pay those people in the Ministry of Education is a joke…. What do they really do?
    Hell, why not just pay every bajan a salary and hope that some of us do something useful….that seems to be the public service plan….

    That was a joke Onions! Don’t get any ideas…. 🙂

  51. @ JUST ASKING | September 1, 2012 at 11:47 PM |

    What do you mean by “REFORM OF THE PUBLIC SERVICE”?
    The Public Sector has been allegedly going under ‘Reform’ for so many years it is now superannuated and needs to be sent to another correctional institution of higher discipline.

    The excessive weight carried around by this behemoth is the main reason why there is so much sluggishness, inertia and blockage in the system. Only a stomach bypass resulting in a 25% to 30% reduction in weight can improve the life and performance of this organism.
    This reduction- whether done locally or imposed from overseas -will make all parts of the system wake up in order to justify their existence or be part of the fat to be removed from the lumbering body.
    The Barbados economy and so-called educated society just cannot afford anymore the size and presently configured public sector. Especially in light of the changing economic order and the need for a new social contract between its citizen and State. Why would a so-called highly educated people still want to rely on the State for so many of its welfare wants? What about self reliance and entrepreneurship? What is our mirror Image? Is it one of State mendicancy? Where is the Pride & Industry?

  52. millerdeanuki wrote”What about self reliance and entrepreneurship? What is our mirror Image? Is it one of State mendicancy? Where is the Pride & Industry?”

    Where is the m oney going to come from to finance the entrepreneurship?

    BizzyCowJerkham an sons?

    Lotta long talk but wunna betta work with wha wunna got. startin wid agriculcha to replace imports.

    my boy Lewis crash on de firs lap so I gine an practice my Salmon fishin skills in case I have to spen de res a muh life in Canada eh!

  53. @Caswell
    “other heads of department have crossed that bridge before”

    But didn’t you tell us earlier that in those cases the suspension was either overturned or ended up under litigation? erego no successful precedent to date?

    @miller and asking
    A look at the public sector reform site and the associated white paper will make your hair cringe. One wonders what the hell has been going on over the years apart from alot of nothing. The proposal and document is fantastic. The implementation is far from stellar and the wastage and inefficiencies up to this day are embarassing.

    “How we can continue to pay those people in the Ministry of Education is a joke…. What do they really do?”

    a very valid question.

    • Observing

      You should learn from the mistakes of others. If other heads of department used the wrong procedure, all other heads have to do is to avoid the mistakes that others have done.

  54. @ Hants | September 2, 2012 at 8:24 AM |
    “Where is the m oney going to come from to finance the entrepreneurship?”

    “Lotta long talk but wunna betta work with wha wunna got. startin wid agriculcha to replace imports.’

    These two statements made by you, although contradicting each other, just happen to be just different sides of the same entrepreneurial coin.
    So let’s settle for a common interpretation of entrepreneurship within the coming local economic scenario: Necessity is the Mother of Invention. Sounds like a new idea to you, Hants?
    The likes of “BizzyCowJerkham ans sons” have had their days in the setting Sun of land deals, golf courses and concrete.
    Survival is the new kid on the block. May the devil take the hindmost!

  55. @caswell
    The fact still remains. No successful precedent has been set, far less when the head of department is the principal of a school..

  56. @ Observing
    …don’t mind Caswell yuh…!
    There is no such thing a a correct procedure when it comes to addressing indiscipline in the public service. ….It is heads the boss lose, and tails the union wins…
    What ever is done…there is a rule or procedure or precedent waiting to prove it wrong…..especially if Caswell is “the union”… 🙂
    The ONLY action that guarantees NO PENALTY is INACTION….. Which is what most public servants excel in…

    • Bushie

      You are not being fair to me. There are more than enough procedures and precedents in the Public Service. The problem is that senior managers are either promoted or recruited to their without being given any training in management, and in most cases they do not even know of the existence of the relevant disciplinary rules. Many managers in the Public Service are appointed because of party affiliation, lodge, familial connections, friendship or sex. They are hardly ever appointed to their post because they merit the position. As a result, when they encounter someone who knows the rules, they are often out manoeuvred. You cannot blame me or any other union official who equip ourselves with the tools to do our job.

      Shortly after we formed Unity Workers Union, I was asked to represent two young ladies who were accused of dismissible offences according to management. When they informed the Human Resources Department that I would be representing them, they were told to get Dennis Clarke from NUPW to represent them and they would only get a warning if they apologised. The Human Resourse Director had encountered me twice before and did not enjoy the experience. The young ladies abandoned me and only ended up with warnings on their files.

      If they had allowed me to represent them, they would not have been warned or anything because neither them, the Human Resourse Director nor Dennis Clarke realized that the offences for which the young ladies were charged did not exist.

      Government needs to train their managers.

  57. millerdeanuki wrote, ” Necessity is the Mother of Invention. Sounds like a new idea to you, Hants?

    I am well aware of “the idea” but I have also heard of “Investment capital required to finance the r&d of “inventions”.

  58. Man Caswell, do you think that Bushie is unfamiliar with your reputation and abilities? You are a legend in your own time. Bushie’s point is that, like Saul on the road to Damascus, you need a conversion to the other side.
    The problem with the union side is that it is not using best talents for productivity …quite the opposite usually.
    National productivity NEEDS to have persons of your brand of competence working on the side of productivity. Let Sir Roy and Dennis represent the down trodden….
    Saul was a class act too, but it is only when his talents were unleashed on the “right” side that he was able to achieve true productivity and gain major results.

    Bushie could just see you running the Water Authority ‘den….or the Transport Board…. Not a boy could slack….

  59. @ Hants | September 2, 2012 at 4:34 PM |

    What about the capital so easily found to underwrite the recently concluded soap opera from which only entertainment value was extracted? How did you, a keen member of the viewing audience rate the locally produced show up North with the “investment” capital ending up in the deep pockets of legal buddies and compensation for loss of high office to a forlorn secretary?

    What about the forex used to finance the many junkets undertaken by these pygmy politicians with a misplaced sense of importance about themselves on the world stage and whom no one notices, sought after by the media or cares a hill of beans about.

    BTW, the recent tour of Canada to drum up business, how did things go from your end? See any people queuing up to invest in R&D in Bim even under the guise of an IBC?

  60. JUST realize that the whole of Barbados is full of un-informed, cell -phone dependent jokers who seem oblivious to their own plight unaware of reality and living in their own stupid world. Good Friday could come on Sunday they would not even notice. Thsy are ripe for exploitation by whomsoever will and the Trinidadians have sensed it like a predator senses a prey in distress and ready for the taking. Ask David Seale from Rl Seale if

  61. @millertheanunnaki | September 2, 2012 at 6:00 PM. “……..compensation for loss of high office to a forlorn secretary?” I am a bit slow this morning (must be senility). I don’t understand what you are trying to say there. Help me out? For the rest of it, agree, except about the “legal buddies”. Commission (Government) would have chosen its counsel (Govt pays), BSTU its counsel (BSTU pays), Broomes (with his union) his counsel (union pays). I MIGHT be wrong and will try to verify, but all those legal charges would not, I believe, fall on the Commission. As for Keith Simmons, well I would think that some government agency would have paid for his counsel, but cannot state that with any certainty. If you can shed light on this, be my guest.

    Nonetheless, I agree with you, to the extent that I believe that the COI started as a good idea, but will likely end as a farcical and biased waste of taxpayers’ money. But it is ever so in Barbados and, until we change the culture of thought, will remain so. My blood runs cold when I think that, but for the grace of God, these jokers might be teaching my grandchildren.

  62. @ Amused | September 3, 2012 at 6:19 AM |

    You will have to show me the cannon ball that shot Lord Nelson or the torpedo that sank the Cornwallis before I accept your analysis of how the legal bills will be divided up for settlement.
    Are you telling us that the BSTU and Jeff Broomes legal representatives will not be drawing from the taxpayers’ pot?
    One can understand why the BSTU would be willing to see this salem type trial take place to string up Jeff to public ridicule.
    But one would be surprised and even taken aback if Jeff Broomes or his Union would have agreed to this kangaroo exercise at his or the union’s own expense. It would be like an accused man paying the police money to find sufficient evidence to convict him.

    So the initial down payment of $600,000 (approx) is going only to help cover the upfront fees for the CoI and the legal and secretarial assistance? And presumably to pay for the rental of the gymnasium and the daily food and drink catering.

    Amused, you stint of living in the UK has not only broaden your potentially liberal mind but has also embedded a growing sense of humour (from watching too much UK TV). A psychological development path I would wish more Bajans to follow and extricate their psyches from the rigid religious cocoon of a mindset which militate against any subtle appreciation of the British sense of humour instead of referring to them as “MAD”.

    You must learn to read between the ironic cultural lines. Now here is a riddle to solve, Amused: A CEO of an agency- mandated to develop and promote the arts and culture to make Bajans learn to laugh at themselves like a form of psychological ‘pick-me-up’- is removed from high office by a ‘lowly’ graduate from the Hitler Youth Brigade whose brain is so close to the ground that even you Amused would walk on, accidentally or otherwise.
    But being a committed party member some form of alternative financial accommodation was arranged before the end of the term for secretarial services rendered.
    Now have a good laugh at the expense of your humourless Bajan friends! “Ev’ry skin teet ent a laugh”, ya hear!

    • Miller

      Section 24 of the Commission of Inquiry Act, Cap. 112 makes provision for the payment of all or any part of the expenses reasonably incurred by any person in connection with his representation before the commission out of money voted by Parliament for the purpose. The only requirement would be that the commissioner would have to recommend the payment. I believe that since the commissioner would have certified that some people and bodies had sufficient interests to be represented before the commission, he would have no option than to recommend their payment.

      Rest assured my dear Miller, all those lawyers would be paid out of public funds. I hear that the junior lawyers would receive $1000.00 per day: Queen’s Counsels would receive a bit more

  63. @ Caswell Franklyn | September 3, 2012 at 12:27 PM |

    I was of that view that the lawyers for all sides would be remunerated handsomely from the taxpayers’ pockets. This is the way it will be.
    It is Amused who proposed otherwise and which I queried. Maybe he is looking for the torpedo that sank the Cornwallis to knock down Nelson from Broad St.

    BTW, can we rest assured that the $600,000 is the first and last instalment for this just concluded event or should we wait for the deus ex machina or coup de grȃce when the big man of the land signs the warrant for broomsey’s execution, figuratively speaking of course?

  64. There better be something positive n tangible coming out of this Inquiry…..either Jeff goes or teachers and Board, et al be separated or bothall.After this spend which is seemingly exceeding $1.2Mil….moneys we could have put to better use..Govt can ill afford another BLUNDER…not at an elections time…we await to see..strategy unfolding.

  65. Not to bother about the significant sums to be made by the legal teams.They will have to pay up all outsanding taxes first and be up to date on all statutory impositions and then be taxed to the hilt on the residual,so in the final analysis quite a substantial sum remains in the treasury.Not quite the cup of tea of these gladiators so called.

  66. @ Gabriel
    They will have to pay up all outsanding taxes first and be up to date on all statutory impositions
    In all fairness… you need to qualify this…you mean “any BLP lawyers”……like you have forgotten the FAMILY FIRST POLICY…let’s not all fall for a Trojan ploy…..

  67. @ Gabriel Tackle | September 3, 2012 at 3:36 PM |
    “They will have to pay up all outsanding taxes first and be up to date on all statutory impositions and then be taxed to the hilt on the residual…”

    To whom and since when does this laudable procedure apply? Certainly not lawyers and many professionals especially those keenly associated with any incumbent administration?
    A phone call or two to some timid wormlike unprofessional bureaucrat works wonders and lubricate the wheels of injustice and corruption in this incestuous little island.

    If most lawyers and doctors in private practice pay income tax then all prisoners pay. Filing losses or very low assessable incomes is a specialized art form practiced only to obtain the necessary tax clearance where required.

    One is prepared to put one’s head on the proverbial chopping block and contest that up to this day Leroy Greenverbs has not paid any taxes on that gratuity ($3.3 million) that passed through his lawyers hands but destined to the man’s account as confirmed by the forensic audit report.
    If the man could be subsequently engaged as a consultant to this administration do you think your statement applies to him?

  68. Please tell me who are the New deputy Educational officers that were oppointed recently . B U T KEEP QUIET you are well rewarded maybe cousin walter maloney will get another too—sell out d workers we will promote you —-Caswell spoke of this relationship the the BUT leaders being promoted /using the union to help they party nd themselves —CEDRIC your wife got one sometime ago you may get another one

  69. @erice
    In ignorance of the beginning of your comment, I have to ask you what I asked Caswell…when or how has the BUT sold out its members (for promotion or otherwise)? Feel free to be as explicit and go as far back as you like…

  70. @Caswell Franklyn | September 3, 2012 at 12:27 PM. I understand that you are correct as to payment of legal fees and I defer to you on that point. I am not sure of the amount, but will, for the sake of argument, accept your statement that juniors are paid $1,000 per day, while QCs make more. Therefore, it would appear that both juniors and QCs are subsidising the Commission. A junior in Barbados would expect to bill their time at a rate of $250 per hour minimum and to bill 8 hours a day minimum. A QC would bill their time at upwards of $1,000 per hour and likely will for 8 hours a day minimum. And please, no one start screaming and carrying on – this is reality worldwide. In the USA, a senior will charge anything over US$1,000 per hour, in Canada it is CDA$1,000 per hour and a top British QC will charge anything over £750 per hour. So, on a worldwide basis, Barbados counsel are a very good deal. BUT, these counsel have been subsidising the COI.

    UNLESS, as is most likely, they have agreed that any shortfall in their usual fees will be met by the various essential parties making representations. In other words, BSTU would pay the shortfall for Hal Gollop, BTU for Messrs Smith and McCarthy (both QC) etc.

  71. @ Amused | September 4, 2012 at 3:35 AM |
    ” In the USA, a senior will charge anything over US$1,000 per hour, in Canada it is CDA$1,000 per hour and a top British QC will charge anything over £750 per hour. So, on a worldwide basis, Barbados counsel are a very good deal.”

    The comparison of fees is not complete unless a comparison of the quality of professional service rendered in return for these fees.
    Would you be so bold as to make just a comparison in quality of service?
    Do you think what lawyers both junior or QC (soon to be KC) offer as ‘service’ in Bim would be accepted in the UK?
    Many of the lawyers in Bim would have been struck of the roll in the UK or have a very limited practice probably working in the depressed areas offering legal aid, citizen’s advice or dealing with immigration matters. Certainly not practising at the Bar or in Chancery Lane.
    Many of them would have been locked up too for swindle and fraud.

  72. when I was attending school years ago, there were some really good teachers who were willing to engage all children and help them to learn and understand, today there are still some of those teachers, but the ones who just is teaching to get a pay check and a good retirement fund, are the ones who makes the education system remain old and boring, without change, thats why so many kids are being kicked out of school at 14, so sad.

  73. @millertheanunnaki | September 4, 2012 at 7:27 AM.

    “Would you be so bold as to make just a comparison in quality of service?” Certainly not. Can’t! Not until the courts afford them the opportunity to practice law by firing the Registrar and a lot of the judges and getting the scheduling of cases properly dealt with so that the Constitution is not constantly being breached.

    “Do you think what lawyers both junior or QC (soon to be KC) offer as ‘service’ in Bim would be accepted in the UK?” Unlike you, I do not have a direct line to God, so am unable to agree “QC (soon to be KC)” bit. On the rest, the UK universities and colleges turn out thousands of solicitors and barristers every year, to the extent that only about 6% or 7% manage to secure employment in the legal world. Of these, there are a goodly portion, not unlike Barbados, where law is a family business, and therefore talent is not of any real consideration. So, I would say that junior counsel would likely do as well in the UK as here. As for the QCs (and long may they remain QC as opposed to KC) apart from a very few (among which very few, I number Hal, in response to your comment on BU on another matter) they would not stand a hope in hell and, indeed, most would probably have to seek alternative employment, like selling computers.

    “Many of them would have been locked up too for swindle and fraud.” Unfair. The vast majority of attorneys are honest, hard-working people. Like any other profession, they are brought down by the few crooks.

  74. Nanci—ask Mr.Greaves Headmaster at Alleyne School how many children he kicked out of school —and these kids have move on to do well yes some have fallen into crime —-i agree with what you have said

  75. @ Amused | September 5, 2012 at 2:38 AM |
    “The vast majority of attorneys are honest, hard-working people. Like any other profession, they are brought down by the few crooks.”

    You will have a very hard job convincing Bajans of that. When we see the ‘few’ crooks behinds bars where they belong like other common crooks we will listen to you. Most Bajans are god-fearing people and believe every word that is ascribed to their sweet Jesus:
    “Jesus replied, “And you experts in the law, woe to you, because you load people down with burdens they can hardly carry, and you yourselves will not lift one finger to help them.” Luke 11:46

    Most lawyers survive only because of an archaic legal system that protects the cartel interests of lawyers. Many legal transactions involving civil matters such as the purchase and transfer of property, administration of wills, filing for divorce and recovery of small debts could be performed by educated lay people without recourse to solicitors as prevail in the UK. Form filling and paying the relevant fees to the appropriate statutory agencies are NOT the sole province of lawyers.

    No. I don’t have a direct line with your god. On the contrary, I don’t believe he exists as portrayed in the source book of your belief. . And if your god existed most likely it would have to be a ‘she’ and not a ‘he’. Unless you view the Sun as male and the Earth as female then we can see eye to eye.
    What is a fact of life is that all of us will die sooner rather than later. So what do we do here in Barbados? Continue to award the title of QC on a lawyer who has done his political sycophantic time when a King- either Charles or William- is ‘soon’ on the UK throne. Unless Lizy intends to break her great-great grandmother’s record, if she lives that long. What about when Bim becomes a Republic as promised by both political parties before its 50th year of Independence from the same British monarchy? Don’t you think it’s about time to stop hanging on to the coattails of a parent who abandoned you 46years ago to seek a haven in the CCJ? Its time you hearken to EWB’s advice and stop loitering at the gates of the Old Bayley and look at your own image in the CCJ mirror. “If you want justice stay away from Coleridge Street” and now also Walrond St. still rings true, and more than ever today, Amused!

  76. So could now we could understand why Karen stood hog tied when BSTU called out their teachers and could not get BUT support in backing the strike action….A PICK at MOE, of course….President still ….is that not a conflict of interest ?Is these sorta appointments that put AX in its position today. Physical D shud learn sum ting bout planting from MOE….

    • Would like to hear some feedback about the meeting this morning called by Minister Jones. So far BU is hearing that there is some confusion in the minds of many teachers the purpose of the meeting.

  77. @David 3:54
    Based on what was reported to me (or not reported) I think you summed it up quite well. confusion and no purpose. lol

    @onions 9:09
    the BSTU didn’t get support from alot of people, unions and quarters. Why single out BUT? I’m moved to ask though, is she still President?

  78. a student brought to mr broomes’ attention that mrs greaves was not teaching them. if at the end of the inquiry, this is the conclusion that she should be disciplined, i am sure that this situation will go to the SG’s office where a decision could be made for for her to repay the govt. i know of one instance when for some reason a public officer was overpaid, the error was noted and subsequently arrangements were made for repayment. the public officer on advice from her union demanded that not one cent would she repay. that was the end of that, nothing was deducted until she got her gratuity 10 years after the incident and discovered that the $8.000 which she was overpaid by previously had be deducted. the same could very well happen to ms greaves who refused to teach, yet collected a salary.

  79. @islandgal
    If you talk to God, you are praying; if God talks to you, you have schizophrenia.
    Thomas Szasz”

    Thomas Szasz was called doubting Thomas. he never gave God a chance…too bad for him…what a waste

  80. @Amused | September 4, 2012 at 3:35 AM |
    “… And please, no one start screaming and carrying on – this is reality worldwide. In the USA, a senior will charge anything over US$1,000 per hour, in Canada it is CDA$1,000 per hour and a top British QC will charge anything over £750 per hour.//”

    the quality of representation in the US, UK and and Canada is by far way superior to that given in Barbados…do u not read or view the internet? in barbados a ‘thiefin’ lawyer NEVER ends up in prison. they are just pretend checks and balances here. in the other countries, those attorneys know that the system does not care about family name as is dome here. so don’t compare the mediocre crap given to clients in barbados. to the quality of services received in the international countries…as far as i am aware, the majority of lawyers in barbados are damn crooks. if they had confidence in their profession, why do they ‘thief’ from the hapless?

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