Minister Donville Inniss has acquired the reputation as the most strident in the Stuart cabinet, although not in the same vain as Minister Kellman. Speaking on behalf of himself he was quick to say, he pontificated that “I was always of the view that the public service is too big and needs to be reduced”. Many agree with the minister, especially those who proffered a similar view in the lead in to the last general elections less than a year ago. To be fair to the minister he magnanimously ascribed blame to successive governments for swelling the ranks of the familiarly known ‘army of occupation’ through the years.
It is evident that Donville, the Cabinet Crier, is privy to to the best kept secret in Barbados, which is, public servants will have to go home. Of course no sane Barbadian wants to see anyone put on the breadline but there is the inevitability as a result of government’s piss poor financial state.
What is sad about the state of affairs in Barbados is that we are to be blamed. We have allowed political patrimony and mendicancy to become paramount. All for the sake of the Barbados Labour Party and the Democratic Labour Party propping up populist ideals. Here we are at this dark place AGAIN because party interest trumped national interest. We are here because ‘educated’ Barbadians decided to toe the party lie or disengage from the system.
But are we surprised? Many who comprised the motley group who now litter the House of Assembly do so to suck hard on the nipples of the treasury. Before being elected to parliament some managed fledgling law and medical practices, sold flour and fried fish, talk sweet to a microphone, work at a hotel when not trying to brew a failed lager. Many if not all of them are clueless about managing a budget of more than $100,000 and worse yet effectively managing people.
It seems like yesterday when we had the likes of Tom Adams, Henry Forde, Richard Cheltenham, Lois Tull, Billie Miller, Bernard St. John, Don Blackman, Brandford Taitt involved in government. Even with their faults the few names mentioned easily exposed the intellectual paucity which now pollutes our highest law making organ.
The big irony is that whether you agreed with Sandiford when he slashed public pay by 8% and sent some home a few, governments who followed had the opportunity to keep the public service lean. Twenty years and billions spent on education later we have come full circle.