Wrong Move, NUPW Should Pay Striking Workers

Submitted by Wayne Cadogan

Submitted by Wayne Cadogan

Anything that is going to negatively affect this country and further push it into the mire, whether it be the government, unions, outside forces or our very own masses, I will speak out against these or any atrocious acts as it is my duty as a Barbadian to enlighten the masses of such damaging acts.


The NUPW in this case is wrong in stating that the striking Sanitation Workers should be paid for their time off from work. It is the union that called the workers to strike and therefore, they are the ones that should be paying the workers for the time off that they did not work.

There are two issues which are wrong here, one is that the striking workers should not have been on the compound during the strike as it was a union strike initiated by the union and not the business, and secondly, it is the union that should be paying the workers for the time spent off from work during the strike.

The country had to suffer the indignity of not having their garbage collected during the strike, no fault of theirs and therefore should not as taxpayers have to pay the striking workers salaries. The union should be in a position, that if it is going to call its members to go on strike, that they should be in a position to pay the strikers salaries as that is what part of their union dues is supposed to cover. It is grossly unfair for the taxpayers not to have their garbage collected and have to pay the striking workers too.


212 Comments on “Wrong Move, NUPW Should Pay Striking Workers”

  1. David July 21, 2015 at 10:28 AM #

    @St Georges Dragon

    This loan arrangement will mirror what occurred with the recent savings bond issuance. Debt to repay debt.


  2. Clone July 21, 2015 at 1:28 PM #

    Some Customs Guards and Officers are some of the biggest frauds in this island. They are known by the other custom officers not by Ministers and they want to get rid of them full stop. So BRA was created so the money can reach where it was intended. You have a problem with that, then strike until September 1st.


  3. Deflon July 21, 2015 at 5:01 PM #

    The NUPW cannot even manage its own afairs and want to tell others what to do? Why is it that most of the staff at the NUPW office are acting in their positions? from gardener to General Secretary.

    Is it true that Roslyn Smith is not being appointed to the GS position because she is only qualified as a stenographer?

    Is it true that Wayne Walrond is the most qualified to be GS but cannot be appointed because he has a case pending for sexual molestation of his step daughter?

    These are the knid of jackasses that are grinding this island to a halt.

    All ably financed and supported by Mia Mottley et al.

    What utter jackassery


  4. David July 21, 2015 at 5:14 PM #

    The Speaker of the House was ordered to pay monies owed to a 70 year old man he ‘withheld’ for many years, yet, he continues to be House Speaker.



  5. ac July 21, 2015 at 5:22 PM #

    But the speaker is not holding the country hostage, no comparison Speckled fowl ,but of recent u have become a Jas


  6. ac July 21, 2015 at 5:29 PM #


    Simple Choice

    MINISTER OF FINANCE Chris Sinckler says customs officers have a choice – they can go to the Barbados Revenue Authority (BRA), or decline to do so.
    It’s as simple as that, Sinckler told the media yesterday, adding that nobody was “ramming anything down anybody’s throat”.
    Pointing out that the issue of their transition had been ongoing since last year, Sinckler said: “The Government of Barbados takes the high road and gives an option. You can say if you don’t want to go and let us move on, but I cannot be in this stalemate situation with people saying negotiations are going on and do that ad infinitum


  7. St George's Dragon July 21, 2015 at 5:55 PM #

    So the options are:
    – go to BRA on a year’s contract and hope you will be given a permanent position
    – stay where you are and get demoted to your (non-acting) position
    That doesn’t seem very fair.
    I can see why Caswell is pushing for the appointments.


  8. Clone July 21, 2015 at 8:03 PM #

    We have to love Bajans
    Thousands go down to Farley Hill. Well dress, nough food , nough drinks and had a good time.
    Them aint care if the world stop. They enjoying themselves so don’t hold nah stress.
    The people happy, garbage build up or customs strike no problem


  9. Dompey July 21, 2015 at 10:34 PM #


    How is it no problem for thousands of Bajans who ventures to Farley Hill to enjoy themselves, when the island reeks with stench from the eyesore of the accumulated garbage round and about the the many localities?You can try to drown your problems with alcohol, but the same problems will reemerge as soon as you reach new level of sobriety.


  10. Dompey July 21, 2015 at 10:57 PM #


    It seem as though you have given little or no thought to these Bajans subconscious awarenes regarding the problems which you have noted above? Because one does not objectively display some measure of displeasure regarding a troubling issue, is does not mean that the problem doesn’t influence one’s actions and feelings on the subscious level.


  11. In and Out July 22, 2015 at 3:00 AM #

    Kudos to Denis Lowe for telling the striking sanitation workers not a blind cent from government. No work no pay. Let tough guy McDowell pay them. The BWU executive council will command Toni Moore to pay the striking workers out of her pocket not the subscription fees of members who toil daily with children to feed. Let Mia pay them. Leave the rotting garbage. Bajans who love their country will cope not a red cent of taxpayers money for the strikers. Not a single sensible person agrees with the sanitation or customs industrial action. Their grievances are groundless. Next step replace those who refuse to work. The 12 % unemployment means there are folks out there who want and need a paycheck.

    Commissiong is forced out of Froon like silence to back the the Venezuela Bolivarian Republic who claim two thirds of Guyana. He held out for long now its time to dance to the tune of his puppet master. Make him limbo low Maduro make the clown dance salsa without music. What a wishy washy chap. He’s sold out the poor black people he claims to represent.


  12. Dompey July 22, 2015 at 4:07 AM #

    In and Out

    Whomever called the strike is of little or no importance at this juncture in the game. What ought to be of paramount importance is the better interest of the nation. And having the stench of garbage laying round and about the island does not serve the better interest of the nation and the majority of the people who lives in this beautiful island. So it is time to abandon egoism and suspend the finger-pointing and be about the people’s business.


  13. ac July 22, 2015 at 6:21 AM #

    When is Mia Mottley going to stop undermining the best interest of Barbados and its people with her outrageous lies .Her toxic and unwarranted contributions to barbados development is in part a cause of all the chaos and upheaval in this country She should to be ashamed to be calling herself a patriotic Barbadian, seems more like one of a traitor.
    As one who have been given special privilege to the Bar exclusive of others Mia should be given back with gratuitous servitude instead of biting the hand that fed her with her display of bad manners shown by her hostile attempt to destroy barbados while undermining the nations confidence


  14. Gabriel July 22, 2015 at 10:03 AM #

    I don’t swear for anyone’s honesty.Bear in mind that if you politically connected people are upright,honest,truthful and un-ambivalent,most brain damaged foot soldiers would have a better example to follow.Ask Denis if you doubt what I am saying.The present DLP is nothing but sumsobitches.You are among those who expect special favours from the same Customs Officers you now criticize.Sinckler is singing a different tune today.You can’t play with Customs like you play with the police.


  15. ac July 22, 2015 at 10:29 AM #

    Even as Barbados face economic challenges Mia continues her dispensation of fiery political barbs fueled with lies and misconceptions to derail investors confidence . The politics of destruction is one that Mia might have knowingly persue and to persuade the unsuspecting and gullible minds
    Be that as it may in the final analysis the politics of mash and grind placed above the national interest might be the onepiece of her dispensation to serve her own self destruction


  16. Dompey July 22, 2015 at 10:45 AM #


    Standing upon principle that holds common-sense at gunpoint, does in the finally analysis, defeats the intending goal or goals one desires to acheive. It is either we learn from the mistakes of the past or else we are sure to repeat them. And it does not go without saying that in these modern times one can’t but to question the thinking of those persons who are charged with the responsibility of being about the people’s business.


  17. Dompey July 22, 2015 at 11:21 AM #

    Well Well

    It seems as though the movers and shakers and power brokers in Bridgetown have a long way to going before they abandon this primitive way of thinking. Yesterday, I told some here of the contingency plan one of our former governors put in place some thirty years ago, in a major strike we had had here. And reading your article I can see how a contingency plan will be put in place in this potentional strike to easy the expected hardship. But of course, the learned class in Barbados does not follow international affairs?

    Delta Air Lines Inc, which contracts Aviation Safeguards, according to the union, said it would be “taking measures to ensure that our more than 35 000 customers booked through LaGuardia on Thursday are not affected.” United Continental Holdings Inc said it has “contingency plans” in place.


  18. Dompey July 22, 2015 at 6:43 PM #

    Wayne Cadagon has stated in no uncertain terms that: “It is his duty to enlighten the Barbadian masses. This man actually believes that he is charged with the responsibility of enlighten the Barbadian masses. I must ask: who is he? And from where has he gotten his paranormal clairvoyance? I wish some people would think before their choose to run off at the mouth. Man, very few in the intelligentsia would risk assuming Cadagon’s position because his position is clothed in share intellectual arrogance.


  19. Dompey July 22, 2015 at 7:10 PM #

    It seems as though Cadagon has been ascertaining his guidances from an ancient crystalball for far too long. And who fool this poor soul into believing that Barbadians care to hear what he has to say anyway? Oh what arrogance man. I marvel at such a statement which supposely came from the lips of an intelligent man, but I am not surprise given who we know of characters the likes of Bush Tea and GP.


  20. millertheanunnaki July 22, 2015 at 7:47 PM #

    @ Dompey July 22, 2015 at 6:43 PM
    “Man, very few in the intelligentsia would risk assuming Cadagon’s position because his position is clothed in share intellectual arrogance.”

    From what you have said it seems Mr. Cadogan would make the perfect dummy to Ventriloquist Freundel. Can just picture the neon lights flashing across the billboard outside the Empire Theatre building: “Lord Fumble the ventriloquist supremo and his sidekick appearing at the ‘all-sold-out’ Performing Arts Centre on Brandons donated by the Chinese in 2012 to be named the Stinkliar Academy for Liars and Hypocrites”!

    Dompey, I think you would make the perfect stand-in for Wayne just in case he comes down with a bad case of laryngitis.


  21. ac July 22, 2015 at 8:04 PM #

    LIar ! liar ! those were the words told to Mia Mottley in parliament said by Sinckler

    Sinckler: Untrue!: Finance Minister calls Opposition leader’s loan statements reckless

    UNTIMELY, dangerous and irresponsible. That’s how Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Chris Sinckler, described reported statements by Opposition Leader Mia Mottley suggesting that Barbados defaulted on a loan payment to Credit Suisse International Bank in June.
    Delivering a Ministerial Statement to set the record straight just around 10:25 a.m. yesterday in the Lower House, Minister Sinckler produced an official letter by the approved principals of Credit Suisse LLC confirming that Barbados has met all of its obligations to date and is current on all payments
    Furthermore, he revealed that on June 29 Barbados met in full the principle and interest on the Barclays de Zoete Wedd loan which was effectively due on July 1, 2015.
    The Minister further noted that not only were the statements made by the Opposition leader false, but the economy could have felt the backlash as concerned international investors contacted the Central Bank of Barbados and the Ministry of Finance to verify the statements that were carried in another section of the media.
    He recalled that the loan was designed among other things to assist Barbados in meeting the financial requirement of its 2014-2015 deficit, as well as to shore up the international reserves at the Central Bank of Barbados. “This was a critical part of Government’s 19-month programme for the foreign exchange market stability, fiscal consolidation and reform and a return to sustainable economic growth,” he stated.
    Minister Sinckler drew reference to a public meeting organised by the BLP at which time the Opposition leader reportedly said, “Information is being hidden from you in this country. If the Budget was called a month later, Sinckler would not report to you that the foreign reserves are in good condition because the Credit Suisse loan has to be paid on June 18 and as of June 19 it still was not paid, and that was $88 million.”
    According to the Minister, the statement conveyed the impression to the world that on June 18 Barbados did not meet its loan servicing commitments as required under the terms and conditions of the Credit Suisse loan and further that up until the June 19 a full day after the due date, no payments were date.
    He assured that on June 18 under the terms and conditions of the contract with Credit Suisse the Government of Barbados in fulfilment of its obligations made the payment as scheduled in the amount of $41.23 million representing interest of 20.6 million and amortisation of 20.63 million to the various holders of the facility
    Sinckler lamented that the accusation levelled by the Opposition leader has the potential “to undermine the confidence of current and perspective investors in our country, damage the impeccable reputation of Barbados in the international financial markets and derail the hard fought gains which as a country we have made over many years”.
    Sinckler told Honourable Members in the Chamber that the Government of Barbados has never defaulted on any of its major international commitments. “Sadly it is my duty to alert this House of the unfortunate reality of these very reckless and ill-considered statements have in fact caused a negative reaction amongst investors not only in this particular loan, but in general,” he stated.
    The Finance Minister stressed that the country can ill-afford “reckless and unnecessary” statements particularly against the backdrop of the volatile conditions in international markets.
    “Across all administration in Barbados, irrespective of political persuasion we have all successfully ensured that as a country we meet all of our debt commitments on time and in full. It is an enviable record and one which we must work to maintain. To this extent, it is incumbent on all of us, those in this Chamber and those outside to act and speak responsibly at all times in these matters, lest we do irreparable damage to the economy of Barbados and to our good name. A word to the wise is enough,” he said. (JH)

    over and over again Mia is proving that ignorance has no bounds.


  22. Bush Tea July 22, 2015 at 9:12 PM #

    Oh Shiite…
    Imagine CHRIS STINKLIAR calling someone a liar…!!??
    ha ha ha

    “Four Seasons will be starting next month…”
    “Four seasons have been sold….”
    “This tax is only for one year….”
    “The shiite tax is to pay off Bizzy…”

    …does this man even KNOW what truth is…?

    Talk ’bout calling the kettle black….


  23. Dompey July 22, 2015 at 9:20 PM #


    Man don’t give up yah day job bozzie because your failing attempt to elicit a laugh here mek Bushie look like Don Knotts enter he prime. lol Wait! Who you teking comedy lession from man? limmah guess … Max Finggall? lol


  24. Dompey July 22, 2015 at 9:36 PM #

    Oh Bushie, shut up and go and nurse your lumbago because if you accuse one politician lying, you might as well accuse them all.


  25. ac July 22, 2015 at 10:01 PM #

    and yuh know deputy dawg alias bush sh,ite u still not going to vote for mia and i tell u why! read all yuh comments yuh say about women and gays ,read all them ! either the comments are true or they are lies,


  26. Dompey July 23, 2015 at 3:40 AM #

    Bush Tea

    Politicians are skilled in the art of lying, so I don’t know why you would single out the Minister of finance as the one who exclusively who wears this title? I remember the famous quote from the the 1990s: read my lips, no more new taxes. We ought to anticipate this because it has and continues to be the normal in politics today, so I don’t know why you or anyone else would be surprise at the thought of a politician lying? And at you age and what you have seen; and ought to know it makes a little worry as to the state of your mental health Bushie. Are you take your medication on time Bushie? I am a little concern brother.


  27. are-we-there-yet July 26, 2015 at 1:54 PM #

    Dont know if this is the correct blog to post this but here goes-:

    The major headline on the front page of today’s Nation is titled “Customs scores low in grading”.

    The article details a truly absymal grading of our Customs and Excise department in a November 2011 assessment and evaluation report carried out roughly four years ago by consultants for a joint IMF, CIDA and World Bank project.

    Did I say abysmal? Actually the grades given were even worse than absymal.

    What is of some concern to me as a layman even more than the grades our Customs and Excise department got is that the Nation is reporting on what was most likely a “confidential” report on what was probably a baseline study carried out to determine the adequacy or otherwise of our C&E operations in a modern system revolving around the ASYCUDA computer based automated data system.

    If that was so and even if it was’nt, it is passing strange that the report has been leaked at this time when Customs is in an industrial dispute with Government. The source of the information could not have been the Customs and Excise department per se. So it begs the question if individuals and agencies in conflict with Government should expect that sensitive or even confidential information is now fair game for publication in the private domain in a manner that supports Government disputes.

    It is also strange that this report should have been leaked while a follow up report has not yet been released or information provided by the Nation as to whether or not Customs and Excise has improved in the interim. That report was conducted last year by IMF’s CARTAC agency for IMF and SEMCAR (The CIDA project Supporting Economic Management in the Caribbean) and was financed by the World Bank. Surely in the interest of fairness such info should have been provided by Government.

    Something seems wrong!


  28. David July 26, 2015 at 1:57 PM #


    Yours is a sound observation, BU made a similar one on the Jeff Cumberbatch blog regarding minister Lowe’s utterance on CBC TV 8 last night the SSA will come under a review shortly.


  29. de Ingrunt Word July 26, 2015 at 3:40 PM #

    Are-We, these parties are all very self serving and duplicitous. The ‘leak’ of the report is really an interesting tactic.

    I appreciate your call for fairness but frankly when I read the report this morning I merely smiled and wondered how Caswell or NUPW would respond. I was disappointed in the claims against the customs officers.

    You ask if there have been improvements since the report was completed but I would ask how could the officials at customs be so unprofessional to be accused with such allegations.

    Criticism is par for course in any role we play so who are they to be so aggrieved that they retaliate like that? What the report didn’t say but what is an implicit undertone is that bribes clear the anger of a criticism.

    I certainly don’t condone unethical or illegal actions – particularly by a government – but in an environment where we herald ‘ Wikileaks’ with their confidential disclosures as a bright light we have to be prepared that our time will come when the confidential release is not what we like.

    So yes, I can agree that something seems wrong but here now is an opportunity for the customs officials/unions to reassure us of the professionalism of the department.

    Whether Customs is a part of BRA or remain as they are now they still need to act as a highly professional unit and government still needs to resolve the multi-year acting status debacle; so at the end of the day this release is just the conniving, unseemly tactics that is played by all sides, it changes nothing really.


  30. David July 26, 2015 at 3:55 PM #

    Several questions are raised by the leak. Why have our authorities not arrested or prosecuted anyone?

    How effective is our media and the extent it allows itself to be manipulated.


  31. are-we-there-yet July 26, 2015 at 6:09 PM #

    De Ingrunt Word;

    Excellent comments above, but, as David has implied above, the Nation story consists of several layers which each deserve to be teased apart and examined in full. I was dealing with one layer only.

    As a former Government worker I came into contact with Customs on numerous occasions and considered that the workers there were no less capable of doing their work than workers in other branches of Government or indeed ones in the private sector. This report screamed that they were all a bunch of incompetents. But I know that this was unlikely to be so except in the view, perhaps, of international bean counters.

    After retiring, I was at one stage involved in a project that developed computer information systems for harmonizing the work of officers in a department that interacted closely with Customs and I therefore had fairly recent contacts with some customs officers because of this.

    I was therefore quite horrified to learn in today’s Nation newspaper of the really horrendous report on the Customs and Excise department that essentially seemed to have found that the Barbados’ Customs and Excise Department was incapable of carrying out its functions at even the minimum level of competence.

    I think the Nation report will have done an injustice to the Department unless it publishes the full report and explains the circumstances under which that report was developed. There has to be mitigating circumstances to explain a report like this where it is highlighted that in 86 areas examined by the international team the Barbados Customs and Excise scored zero in 81. What were the 5 areas where they scored more than zero? What were the 81 areas in which they scored zero? How was the scoring done? Were there surveys and which external agencies and individual types were involved in the surveys? was there an overall weighted average grade produced? what was it, if so?

    Was it because of this report that Government, surreptitiously decided to move the department to BRA or to use it as a rationale for deep cuts and reassignment in the personnel there? Please note that such might be justified but not from what little we have seen from the unexplained extracts of this report.

    Page 4a of the Nation then highlights the problem of critics of Customs blacklisted, corruption measures, etc. This seems to have been based on surveys carried out by the international consultants and correlated with a lack of the department keeping records of such contacts. Obviously this is a very serious problem and merited swift action by Management, if it were found to be true. Did management follow up? The Nation doesn’t say.

    The most damning procedural note was “the evaluators requested that a specific pallet be identified and THE customs officer was unable to identify any information about the specified cargo, including the date of arrival, the owner, the destination or if it is registered in the ayscuda++ system at all. Did they really speak with a custom’s officer or with a guard? and even if it was a custom’s’ officer couldn’t they have asked the question of 5 officers to get a real feel for if the Custom’s department itself was capable of doing such routine searches for which they were trained? But it should be noted that the Evaluator comments regarding computerized systems states that “currently Customs does not operate any computerized systems transit control” Could this be the reason why the Officer could not trace back the information on a specific pallet?

    Could not much of the report be also related to a lack of utilization of computer systems and that blaming the officers for this and scoring their performance without access to that essential resource might be a tad unfair. It is management at fault there.

    The most telling point that speaks to some lack of professionalism by the Nation in the development and publication of this story is where it indicates that a second report was done last year without any further comment or follow up by the person writing the story?

    Wouldn’t their readers have liked to know if there had been any improvement in the delivery of Customs’ services? Were computer systems being utilized more professionally as a result of the report? Did they now have systems for tracking complaints? etc etc?

    Why leak the report now?


  32. Observing July 26, 2015 at 6:18 PM #

    The leak is a precursor of things to come. Caswell would do well to put up his guard.

    Just observing


  33. Caswell Franklyn July 26, 2015 at 6:35 PM #


    Thanks for your concern but my guard is always up. I am no Lisa Marshall.



  34. Gabriel July 26, 2015 at 6:43 PM #

    It appears that there was lack of cooperation towards the overseeing agency and the officers interviewed might have reacted accordingly.Was there union support for the
    oversight.Were the staff made to feel threatened by the questioning and responded in such a way that the result was a failing grade.If after these findings,were there recommendations to rectify the negative findings.Many years ago Customs officers were sent for 6 month training courses in Trinidad.I am not aware that there is a local
    equivalent in the Training Division.Perhaps there is, because this is a key specialty area, and there is a lot at stake if it is not functioning on all fours.


  35. are-we-there-yet July 26, 2015 at 7:19 PM #


    I was also wondering about the points in your first 2 sentences; Lack of cooperation towards the project’s executing agency and the possibility of the staff feeling threatened and reacting accordingly.

    The Barbados Customs and Excise department cannot be as incompetent as the Nation’s extracts from the aged report indicates.


    Agreed, but it also suggests that there is a modus operandi that is being concretized and wielded like a blunderbuss , especially as exemplified in the Lisa Marshall case. Also, that there is a palpable lack of professionalism and maintenance of proper journalistic standards by the Nation. That report could have been written differently and be just as damning but with the Nation coming out of it smelling of roses if the Nation had dotted its I’s and crossed its T’s.


  36. de Ingrunt Word July 26, 2015 at 7:39 PM #

    Are-We, thanks for the comprehensive details re the Nation story. I read only the brief extract online and not the entire story. Your remarks, analysis and queries are excellently stated.

    Only things I can add are 1) such a score card of 81 of 86 zeros is either indicative of a very uncooperative group of customs officers or very indifferent, incompetent management.

    And 2) go easy on that weighted average request because old form mathematics still says that lots of zeros will average to zero…LOLLL.

    But seriously there is no practical way that a Bajan customs dept. can be rated so poorly, That would be an indictment on the Comptroller, Minister and surely the Union leaders.That is as bad as being told we boast 99% literacy and discovering that children get to Common Entrance and score zero. WT????

    Amazing report. No wonder Caswell was warned to get his guard up by Observer. But then again Caswell would have been familiar with the report long time now.


  37. Prodigal Son July 26, 2015 at 8:45 PM #

    Sometime last year a friend of mine who worked in one of the government departments that has now gone over to BRA told me that there were a number of foreign “people” in the department trying to get info from them.

    Human nature being what it is………the person told me that they decided not to co-operate, they gave wrong info…….the decision in the department was why would they tell them what they knew for the “people” then to cause them to lose their jobs.

    So judging from what the person said…….if that was the attitude in that department……… my thoughts are that it was probably the same when this review of Customs was conducted……….they reviewers may have been given the shaft by dis-satisfied Customs officers!

    Judging from my interaction with Customs officers in my job and private life, this report seems a bit one sided!

    I would like to see what the person I refer to as “Nation Critic” has to post……..is the Nation so biased after all?


  38. Gabriel July 26, 2015 at 9:11 PM #

    I, like you, have in my work interfaced with Customs and Excise on an above average basis and I can affirm these folk are highly intelligent and motivated to perform at a high standard.If this report is factual,the executing agency was shafted big time tongue in cheek style.It also tells me that there is bad blood between the MoF and Customs and Excise and the haemorrhage has to be sutured once and for all.Time for the surgeon,the electorate.


  39. Simple Simon July 26, 2015 at 10:02 PM #

    @David July 26, 2015 at 3:55 PM “Several questions are raised by the leak.

    1.Why have our authorities not arrested or prosecuted anyone?
    A Simple Answer: Because if thieving is going on the thieving is on behalf of some political big shot or another, and in Barbados we don’t arrest politicians don’t care what they do…but we snigger when they end up dead long before their 3 score and ten, or when they live long, long, long and end up in the almshouse

    How effective is our media and the extent it allows itself to be manipulated.
    A Simple Answer: The media isn’t being manipulated. The media is showing how deceitful and incompetent the government is. Keeping a report and sitting on it for 4 years? Really, really David?


  40. Simple Simon July 26, 2015 at 10:07 PM #

    Sometime the foreigners, wunna Canadians too Hants and don’t unick dey teet to the Bajans and then expect the Bajans to provide them with highly complex information. It doan work so.

    Tell the foreigners that a little “good morning mam” and a little”good morning sir” does much to grease the wheels of professional and social intercourse. And if somebody mudda or fadda ded don’t pretend that them too busy to spend an hour or so at the funeral.


  41. St George's Dragon July 26, 2015 at 10:33 PM #

    There is another possibility. Perhaps the report is the conclusion of an independent external body.


  42. are-we-there-yet July 27, 2015 at 6:24 AM #

    St George’s Dragon.

    The info in the newspaper article suggests that it is the conclusion of an independant external body but it also suggests that the information or conclusions therein is almost certainly flawed. I haven’t seen it, but just a look at the excerpts and conclusions given in the Nation’s article suggests that the report is probably a boiler plate one that did not fit the local situation. There is no way that any customs department in the Caribbean MDC’s could be properly evaluated to score zero percent in 81 of 86 areas of sensible evaluation criteria. The design’s fit with local conditions have to be at fault.

    Overseas consultants are famous for producing these kinds of reports that do not take local situations into consideration and which are often rejected by the local authorities. BTW, I wonder if this one was not accepted by the Customs authorities and that was the reason for the second unleaked one? Actually, it would be quite incredible if the authorities at Customs accepted the report as it condemns them even more than it does the Customs’ officers.

    I’m not saying that Customs or any other department of Government is blameless or is operating at the forefront of technology but the data on this report, as presented in the Nation, cannot be a true and proper assessment of the Customs and Excise department.

    I agree that Government needs to ensure that those departments are efficiently run and something has to be done to effect this. Perhaps bringing them under the Umbrella of BRA is the best option but it does not appear that the modalities for doing so are being effected efficiently.

    David, you are a boss at sourcing information from the back of a truck. Yuh don ‘tink yuh cud get one uh dem reports fuh de BU family?


  43. St George's Dragon July 27, 2015 at 6:55 AM #

    Let me try that again. Perhaps the report is a valid and proper representation of the state of play by an independent external body.


  44. Bush Tea July 27, 2015 at 7:48 AM #

    @ Dragon

    …but PERHAPS the damn customs people did NOT feel like kowtowing to another set of sick looking foreign white people who think that they know it all ..and who came and high-handedly imposed themselves on the damn people.
    PERHAPS they are sick of the lotta piss poor management from politicians, and pressure from businessmen going back decades now…
    PERHAPS they can see the high level of dishonesty and bribery being practised by politicians, businessmen and local wannabes …and feel PRESSURED to fall in line….

    …of course, PERHAPS you are correct…

    ..and PERHAPS a similar study was done on the political system in Barbados.
    PERHAPS that report is being hidden too….
    PERHAPS one has also been done on the local business sector…
    PERHAPS you may wish to speculate on the contents of such independent reports….and on the ‘state of play’.


  45. St George's Dragon July 27, 2015 at 8:12 AM #

    I find it interesting that the public sector has regularly come in for criticism on BU over the years and Customs is one of the departments which has had its fair share of that criticism. Now, all of a sudden they are models of public sector efficiency.
    You seem to suggest that accepting bribes is ok because everyone is doing it. I don’t accept that. Wrongdoing is just plain wrong.
    And if the officers in customs failed to engage with an external review because they thought they were “kowtowing” then they deserve everything they get.


  46. St George's Dragon July 27, 2015 at 8:20 AM #

    Oh, and by the way, if studies were done on the political system and business sector, then they should be released so we can see what they say, otherwise we are less able to address the problems.


  47. de Ingrunt Word July 27, 2015 at 8:27 AM #

    St. George’s, I am in agreement with Are-We and Bushie on this matter as it makes no practical sense that our Customs Dept could be failing so completely in 94% of areas they action daily.

    They were not accessed as being partly competent with a 5 or partly failing with a 4 on a 10 point scale but as abjectly incompetent and stupid at a zero.

    Can you actually perceive that your cousin or mother’s relative, or John the son of your buddy from back in the day who has been working at Customs all these years; that all of them are just doffusses!

    From another angle, the other day when there was a review of the US Secret Service after the latest fiasco of officer shenanigans the auditor general (or whomever it was) painted a picture of an incompetent agency of ill-disciplined drunks, officers perpetuating school-boyish antics with females and so on.

    Yet, this same incompetent agency has successfully safeguarded the first Black President on the USA for the last seven plus years (he was under protection early when only a candidate) during the most difficult period of internal and external political strife.

    So are they truly that incompetent? CLEARLY NOT. But of course some officers were less than sensible in their actions causing that spike in negativity on the report.

    Customs has many officers who too are less than sensible in their actions (some even corrupt) but many others have displayed integrity, supreme competence and skill over these many years.

    The report is absolutely not a true assessment of the Dept.


  48. de Ingrunt Word July 27, 2015 at 8:42 AM #

    Oh, no one is ‘unbashing’ the customs folks; just giving a reality check. As Are-We and others have properly assessed any survey that has those sorts of results must be flawed. They identified areas where the flaws could be as personnel conducting; modality of survey; types of questions or indeed lack of support.

    But more damning as they also alluded to is which competent senior manager would sign-off on that report unless and until the company conducting same did a comprehensive review and update to identify why such grave failings.

    So to Are-We’s point the Nation team should certainly also be giving the public a glimpse of the verbiage and qualitative addendum related to the reports quantitative findings, because those stats MUST be explained by the professional doing the study

    Remember what they say about “Lies, damned lies, and statistics”. Wise men can get stats to prove anything.


  49. St George's Dragon July 27, 2015 at 8:45 AM #

    I am entirely comfortable with the possibility that the release of the report is a political manoeuvre. It comes at a time when Government would be really grateful for something like this to dump on Customs. I guess the second report would help make things clearer.


  50. David July 27, 2015 at 8:58 AM #

    There is an irony here. The government’s resistance to bring transparent yet want to foist it on all an sundry. Lead by example.


  51. Bush Tea July 27, 2015 at 9:02 AM #

    @ Dragon
    Not giving Customs any free passes….
    But there is always a bigger picture, and one has to be FAIR when making these blanket assessments.
    Everything is relative.


  52. St George's Dragon July 27, 2015 at 9:13 AM #

    This looks as though it could be the basis of the Customs report:
    Not sure I understand how you get a 0. Does that mean Customs don’t have a process in place for the issue being scored? Anyone understand this?


  53. Hants July 27, 2015 at 9:34 AM #

    The results of the report do not seem credible to me.

    Over the years I have shipped many items to Barbados. I used a Customs broker to clear the items through customs.
    They ranged in value from about $1000 up to $20,000

    I never had a problem or unreasonable delay.

    I have shipped by Fedex, Air Canada, BA and a couple times by Ocean.


  54. Bush Tea July 27, 2015 at 9:36 AM #

    PERHAPS it simply means that those required to provide necessary feedback did not give two wuk-ups about the survey or the results …and probably were highly SUSPICIOUS of the motives behind the damn exercise in the first place.
    Management is complex.
    Good motives alone DO NOT CUT IT.
    Things like trust, transparency, openness, KEEPING ONE’s WORD, and CARING…
    ..counts a DAMN LOT.


  55. Prodigal Son July 27, 2015 at 10:00 AM #

    This report may not be a true reflection of the Customs.

    I mentioned that a friend of mine who worked in a government department which has gone into the BRA told me that the people in the particular department were upset that the government brought white people in there who had no idea what was going on to interview them.

    The person said it was clear that the so called consultants knew nothing of what was the department’s mission or goals, nothing of what they did daily so they took offense and decided among themselves not to cooperate. Why would they cooperate with white people for in the end for people to lose their own jobs. The workers decided to hold on to their knowledge…………..saying “they dont know and we aint telling them what we know”.

    So maybe, just maybe the Customs officers played hardball. We Barbadians seem to think that once these so called consultants come from overseas that they possess knowledge that we do not have.

    The government brought in consultants from the UK to review the BTA and look what the idiots accepted……..splitting one agency into two to produce the same result………….does that make sense to anyone. I wonder if the government has paid the consultant yet as for a long time the person remained unpaid!


  56. are-we-there-yet July 27, 2015 at 11:52 AM #

    St George’s Dragon;

    That looks as if it could be the kind of assessment tool that could have been used. The fact that it was designed in collaboration with most of the International agencies that were responsible for the Barbados assessment almost nails it.

    I would have to go through the tool more carefully but offhand I think that such a tool, administered by novices with little or no familiarity with local culture and one using minimal dedicated computerised systems and one where staff might be totally against being tested with the tool by foreigners, could yield the kind of results that the Nation article highlighted. Results that would not really reflect the degree of competence of the Department being tested.

    This might explain why the report was apparently put away and might also explain the need for a further testing to have been done, hopefully with better buy-in by the testees and management and with greater use of available technology and by people who really understand the limitations of such tools and factor in such limitations in their conclusions.


  57. David July 27, 2015 at 11:58 AM #

    It is difficult to imagine the government and management of the Customs Department would have accepted the final report of participation by workers were thought to be passive therefore leading to distortion of results.


  58. are-we-there-yet July 27, 2015 at 8:24 PM #


    The leaking of the report suggests that it was accepted otherwise it is difficult to accept the degree of duplicity that would have been involved in the leaking of a report that had not been accepted.

    But these days, who knows?


  59. NationBLPnewspaper July 28, 2015 at 1:02 AM #

    Why do the the partisans on the blog seem to find it hard to believe that our customs department has not been seen in the best light by independent assessors? We all know that for years SOME customs officers have become richer than any other public officers and we all know why.

    The real disgrace in the Nation BLP newspaper on Sunday was when Sanka Price (surprise, surprise) does an article telling PM Stuart that he was wrong on recent statements about the law and retiring public officers. But Sanka did not have the journalistic integrity to tell the country the BLP attorney who wrote the article instead referring to an “anonymous legal expert”.
    How much lower will the Nation allow itself to sink into the journalistic cesspool?

    As David said earlier “How effective is our media and the extent it allows itself to be manipulated.”


  60. Artaxerxes July 28, 2015 at 5:27 AM #

    NationBLPnewspaper July 28, 2015 at 1:02 AM #

    “But Sanka did not have the journalistic integrity to tell the country the BLP attorney who wrote the article instead referring to an “anonymous legal expert”….”

    I was told that the “anonymous legal expert” was Kenny Best. After all, he’s a bit disgruntled because ALL the other losing candidates getting free money and no room could be found for him.

    Esther is minister of labour; Patrick Todd, Harry Husbands and two time losers, Irene Sandiford-Garner and Jeptar Ince are senators/parliamentary secretaries; Haynesley Benn is Consul General at Toronto; Verla seems to be CBC’s legal analyst; and George Hudson is a member of NLICO’s board.


  61. are-we-there-yet July 28, 2015 at 8:59 AM #

    The striking customs officers believe the report was strategically leaked


  62. NationBLPnewspaper July 28, 2015 at 3:52 PM #

    @Artaxerses – Instead of holding the Nation BLP newspaper’s feet to the fire and call a spade a spade you engage in the politics of distraction because the Nation newspaper’s lowering of standards cannot be defended.


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