Submitted by Anthony Davis
“PM Freundel Stuart has a brand new ride. Amid all the talk about austerity, Stuart is now driving around in a sleek S-Class Mercedes Benz, fresh out of Simpson Motors showroom at Warrens. “The S-Class is said to be valued at $350,000 duty free or over $700,000 inclusive of duties.” – Barbados Today June 2, 2017
Public servants in this country haven’t seen a pay rise in years, and other people are struggling with a tax burden which comes to 29.5% come July, but there’s enough money to spend on a luxury vehicle for his majesty.
Now the Minister of Sport and Culture, Stephen Lashley says “give us more time,” adding that the past eight years has been a relatively short space of time.
Pray tell me, Mr. Minister, where did you get the idea that 8 years is a short period of time?
Furthermore, from 2008 to 2017 makes it nine LONG, HARSH years for the one horse which you’ve been burdening with more and more taxes every year.
You probably thought about the pony express riders during the wild West Times, not knowing that the riders didn’t flog the same horse from town to town, but collected fresh mounts along the way from what were called Way Stations.
This horse has been ridden by the same 16 persons from 2008 to this day.
What do you need more time for?
For the tax collector to find some new tax to drop on the back of this horse, or increase its load by raising some tax which is already in place?
Either way, the horse has become scrawny from lack of proper care.
Purchasing a new Mercedes is typical of the condescending attitude taken by this Government.
People in this country are starving, some must cut back on what is considered healthy food.
I overheard one old lady tell the other just a week ago that she used to be able to buy fish four times a week, but could only afford it twice a week now. I wonder how often she’ll be able to purchase it after July 1.
But you want more time!
Some items were taken off the formulary, so one pensioner said he had to pay $100 for one type of his medication. After July 1 he’ll probably have to pay between $130 and $140.
Many people are either walking to or from work to save money.
How much can they save as of July 1?
The Transport Board’s service has gone down the drain, but you have no money for buses, but enough to buy a spanking new Mercedes Benz S-Class, yet you want us “to give you more time”.
Nurses at the QEH recently hadn’t been paid for months, and when they went to check why not they were sent from one person to the other, each claiming not to be responsible, but you are “entitled” to get back your 10% after 16 months, and you are taking it.
If the nurses were to demand what’s by rights theirs, you would want to fire them.
They can’t get transportation at correct times to get to/from work, but you can put all kinds of taxes on them knowing full well that they are among those who pay your bills, salaries and taxes, because they have to pay taxes.
How can you expect people to be productive when they can’t get to work?
Unlike you, they can’t stay at home whenever they like, because the few cents they are receiving will become fewer still.
The QEH used to be a bastion of health care in the Caribbean, but all one keeps hearing now are negative comments about it.
Every time one looks around there’s a new kid on the block when it comes to the number of vagrants in Bridgetown.
I wonder how come.
Yet we should give you more time.
As per usual you’re trying to lay the blame for the state of the economy at someone else’s feet.
All of a sudden you took over the debt of the BLP.
As far as I recollect, the BLP left millions of dollars in the Treasury.
What did you do with all that money, Mr. Minister of Sport?
You seem to be a sporty minister, because I had to rub my eyes a number of times in order to make sure that what I was reading as a headline wasn’t a dream.
I could do nothing but laugh when my senses confirmed that you were actually asking for “more time”.
Not one of YOU had the audacity to stand up to the tax collector and say: Enough is enough, but you have to come to us with nothing more than codswallop asking for more time.
“Time and tide wait for no man”!
You have always had a condescending attitude towards the populace of this country.
How many more Mercedes Benz S-Class do you want to purchase?
How many more sweetheart deals a la Sandals do you want to sign?
Does that hotel pay any taxes?
I note it has its own dive boat, and tour bus making sure that every cent which those who stay at the hotel spend doesn’t go to any locals.
And you want “more time”?
As Shakespeare would say: The additional 8% on the SRL was the unkindest cut of all.
If, as you say,you “came to office in 2008 at the height of a very serious and challenging global recession”, why did you campaign to have a second term, seeing that things were so difficult?
You ran the horse to ground without giving it a chance to be properly fed and groomed, so the horse can’t carry your extravagant burden any longer.
You tore down every safety net which was put there for the poor, the needy and the vulnerable, yet you want more time!
You tore down everything! From tertiary education to health care, to welfare, to transport, and you have done nothing for the environment!
You’ve given the banks permission to defraud us by paying the least interest in the world, and they’re using it to their fullest advantage. No wonder the small businesses are not doing so well!
Can you imagine interest of one cent?
What shall we do with one cent? It can’t even buy a mint!
Yet you want more time?
“It is better to offer no excuse than a bad one.” – George Washington
The idiocy of it all.
Can you believe these illiterates and jackasses on the blog?
If Mia is practicing illegally then what does it say about the authorities including Adriel Brathwaite who promised to investigate and is often seen liming in the same bar grinning with Mia?
David why dont you post the article in Barbados today which adresses the legality of Mia certification as a practicing lawyer in Barbados.
Remember she is the one braying about corruption
Reading the posts and listening to the members of this govt and its operatives removes all doubt that we have a serious problem with them as far as their understanding what is expected of them when elected to serve our country such as behaviour,accountability and good governance is concerned.
Sadly many of our citizens are following this ill mannered behaviour and then the political class asks the question ….how the youth get so…..how Bim get so…..
Excellent @ Vincent Haynes
When this group of politicians explain their actions by referencing prior action by the other party, then you know that they are followers and not leaders.
Corruption by any other name is still corruption or is Mia given special exemption because of her pedigree
What pedigree, what.
Aren’t we all human family, at the excact same spot on the evolutionary chain?
Why don’t you abandon this foolish Eurocentric idea about pedigree?
@Ping Pong June 9, 2017 at 11:42 AM “Voters want iPhone not Chinese tablet.”
Not me bosie.
i ain’t tekkin’ neffen from a fella “B” nor “D”
But you know that all IPhones are made in China right?
What is going on in Barbados? Here we are, obsessing over an official car, while a so-called union leader is threatening the government that if it does not withdraw a new tax ‘they will march’. What a buffoon. This is anarchy.
Why don’t you write about England …or some shiite that you may actually know something about? Yuh mean you have not yet come to the realisation that reading the Barbados newspapers and jumping to editorial conclusions is fraught with dangers …and almost guaranteed to make you look foolish…?
Why not just ASK questions…..?
You underestimate the value of your questions….
Hardly anyone does this in Barbados, so even where the facts are KNOWN and can be seen every day, what happens…?
Not one ‘ask’….!
….except, of course, for Come-and-sing-a-song of late….
Long overdue……a most positive step by our Union and hopefully the others will follow…….
NUPW: Pull taxes or we march!
BARRY ALLEYNE, email@example.com
THE NATIONAL UNION OF PUBLIC WORKERS (NUPW) is ready to call out its members if Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler does not recall the tax measures in last month’s Budget.
The decision to place industrial action on the table was taken late last week during a special meeting of the executive council of the NUPW, headed by president Akanni McDowall.
The president was unable to say exactly when the action would be taken, but said the union will give Government until July 1 to roll back the new taxes.
“In light of the challenges, the union is calling for the Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs Christopher Sinckler to either immediately repeal the tax measures or to institute a ‘coping subsidy’ for public servants until salary negotiations have been concluded,” McDowall told the SUNDAY SUN. (BA)
– See more at: http://www.nationnews.com/nationnews/news/97654/nupw-pull-taxes-march#sthash.3OsmI1k8.dpuf
All this lotta long talk about a new car for the Prime Minister of our country to be driven in.What is the matter with you people? Anybody know under what conditions the vehicle was delivered to the Prime MINISTER’S DEPARTMENT? ANYBODY KNOW IF THERE IS ALEASE ARRANGEMENT? ANYBODY KNOW UNDER WHAT CONDITIONS, IF IT LEASED, THERE ARE ASSOCIATED WITH ANY LEASE; MAINTENANCE, LENGTH OF THE LEASE, ETC? MAYBE UNDER THE LEASE ARRANGEMENTS THE VEHICLE IS TO BE CHANGED AFTER X NUMBER OF YEARS. ETC. A LOT OF US ARE ALWAYS TALKING AND PASSING JUDGEMENT WITHOUT BEING AEARE OF ALL THE FACTS. STOP BEING CRITICAL BECAUSE IT IS AN INITIATIVE OF THE OTHER PARTY.
@ Alvin CumminsJune 11, 2017 at 12:08 PM
What the hell are you rabbiting on about, Alvin Chipmunk?
Didn’t the PM confirm that the capital cost of replacing the vehicle was included in the 2016-17 Estimates?
If any replacement vehicle for use by the PM is financed under a lease arrangement then there would have been a ‘standard or usual’ continuation of the previous lease payments whether monthly or quarterly with the necessary adjustments to reflect any changes in ex-showroom /delivery cost along with any estimated ‘standard’ maintenance costs if the lessor (and not lessee) assumes that liability.
What you should be more concerned about is if the $223,000 odd in VAT charged on that invoice to the BWA was indeed paid into the Treasury.
If it hasn’t been paid over then it is not too late to collect to help defer some of the cost of the car assigned to the PM whether as an outright purchase or under some lease arrangement.
What do you know about the St. Joseph dos;ital, which the BLP refused to finish because of political stupidity. Check and see what was donated that the BLP refused to accept and put to use. Check for yourself or go to the Nation Archives, to get the truth.
@Hal Austin June 11, 2017 at 5:02 AM “What is going on in Barbados? Here we are, obsessing over an official car, while a so-called union leader is threatening the government that if it does not withdraw a new tax ‘they will march’. What a buffoon. This is anarchy.”
Oh!!, please don’t exaggerate.
We are not obsessing over the car. We are simply making a few comments. Nobody has tried to take away the PM’s shiny new toy, even though it was bought with our money.
Akanni McDowall is the legitimately elected President of the National Union of Public workers (just as Fruendel Stuart is legitimately the Prime Minister of Barbados, even though I am tired of him.)
Nobody is threatening the government. The union leader has said that the NUPW members may exercise their legitimate and constitutionally protected right to protest. Why do you see that as a threat?
The gentleman is NOT a buffoon, although you may be a pompous @ss.
What anarchy are you talking about? Anarchy is “a state of disorder due to absence or nonrecognition of authority.” I don’t see anarchy in Mr. McDowall’s words, nor do I see anarchy in any union’s right to peaceful marching. Why do you see anarchy?
Why don’t you take off your DLP blinkers?
@Alvin Cummins June 11, 2017 at 12:08 PM “All this lotta long talk about a new car for the Prime Minister of our country to be driven in.What is the matter with you people? Anybody know under what conditions the vehicle was delivered to the Prime MINISTER’S DEPARTMENT? ANYBODY KNOW IF THERE IS ALEASE ARRANGEMENT? ANYBODY KNOW UNDER WHAT CONDITIONS, IF IT LEASED, THERE ARE ASSOCIATED WITH ANY LEASE; MAINTENANCE, LENGTH OF THE LEASE, ETC? MAYBE UNDER THE LEASE ARRANGEMENTS THE VEHICLE IS TO BE CHANGED AFTER X NUMBER OF YEARS. ETC. A LOT OF US ARE ALWAYS TALKING AND PASSING JUDGEMENT WITHOUT BEING AEARE OF ALL THE FACTS.
Well we would know all of these things, if the Prime Minister had chosen to tell us, but since he has CHOSEN NOT TO TELL US, then that leaves us to speculate. Why are you surprised by our speculation?
Hi Mr Cummins
not being a member of the BLP, I can’t undo what happened many years ago with regard to the St.Joseph hospital. You seem to be of the view that the DLP should be allowed to do at least as much stupidity as that done by the BLP. I am not sure that attitude will help Barbados progress but I could be wrong.
I find all this discussion over a vehicle as the height of Stupidity and small mindedness.. there are people in Barbados; not heads of government; not Prime ministers, who I am sure are driving new cars better than the which has been chosen as the OFFICIAL Prime Ministerial (Not Freundel’s) vehicle. He would not have been the person purchasing the vehicle. These decisions are not within his pursue. This would have been the decision of the Permanent Secretary responsible for the Prime Minister’s office. Learn how government works and the protocols that have to be followed.
@ Ping Pong
Boss, ….Alvin Cummins is an idiot.
He is a natural bird to flock with Froon and his feathered friends.
Don’t waste your time trying to talk sense to him, …that is about as useful as dipping water from Carlisle Bay and taking it to the Inner Basin …in an effort to try to reduce the sea level…
Just let it be….
I have NOT commented on the purchase of the PM official car. I have commented on the harshness of the the Government in insisting on the application of taxes and duties on charitable donations made to institutions such as the RC church and a Government secondary school. The only result that was attained is that poor Barbadians are denied assistance and Government revenues are not increased. Should you wish to instruct me on how government works and protocols that have to be followed, I would be interested in reading about same in the case of philanthropy which was publicly stated by PM David Thompson, on taking over the administration of Government in 2008, to be something to be officially encouraged.
An excellent comment Mr. Ping Pong, however it is clear that under Stuart the DLP has moved away from many of the pledges made by the late Thompson.
@Alvin Cummins June 12, 2017 at 10:13 PM “He would not have been the person purchasing the vehicle. These decisions are not within his pursue. This would have been the decision of the Permanent Secretary responsible for the Prime Minister’s office. ”
So are you telling me than that DLP Cabinet Ministers do not talk to their Permanent Secretaries, in order to come to sensible decisions about how tax payers money is spent?
I am here wondering if instead of buying Mercedes for many high level officials, cars which it appears are only good for 3 to 10 years, what have happened if instead of spending that money on private vehicles over the past 50 years if we had spent that money instead on a really excellent, really robust public transportation system, if we had unholstered, air conditioned buses which ran on all main roads every 15 minutes at rush hour, and every half hour in off times. How much money we would save if the many, many public servants were not given interest free or low interest loans to buy private vehicles and if instead that money was also pushed into the public transportation system, a system so good that Cabinet Ministers would feel comfortable catching the bus to go to work every morning, and home again at nights.
In another section of the media this week, Carl Moore noted that about 30 years ago one of his Central Bank colleagues on returning from Guyana was shocked to have seen that the Governor of the Central Bank of Guyana was being driven in a very modest vehicle, and Carl said words to the effect that, that is what happens when a small open economy runs out of foreign exchange.
At about that same time, that is about 30 to 40 years ago, the then Attorney General of Ontario, Roy McMurtry
was catching the Toronto Transit Commission vehicles to go to his work at Bay Street every morning, and he was often standing as the system is always crowded at rush hour, and he being a gentleman did not sit while a lady was standing. This in a province of 13 million people now, maybe 10 million then, a province immensely rich in natural resources, with a tax base bigger than all of Caricom, and a society and economy that was and is huge magnet for bright young people productive from all over the world. At the same time Guyana was leaking its bright young people, and our own Central Bank Governor was being driven in the pale blue tax payer funded Mercedes.
This man McMurtry was no fly-by-night political lightweight. He served as Attorney General, Solicitor General, a Member of the Provincial Parliament, High Commissioner to the Court of St. James, Chief Justice of Ontario, Chancellor or York University, and for his public service has been awarded the Order of Ontario and the Order of Canada.
I am wondering if a well funded public transportation system was good enough for this man, why is our public transportation system not good enough to pick up our high level officials whether they live in Marchfield, or West Terrace or Sandy Lane? And I am wondering what our public officials plan to do about our public transportation system?
Do they plan to create a public transportation system which is good enough for themselves, good enough for their spouses, good enough for their children?
Or are they content to have our prophets (calypsonians) continue to sing “the white people laughing at we.”
How many Transport Board buses do you estimate the $700,000 spent on two luxury vehicles for the Prime minister could have purchased? Bear in mind the TB has been nearly insolvent and unfit to procure new buses in recent years.
We can continue to have this country run by entitled geriatrics, or we can retain out bright young people, but we can’t have it both ways, because FACT is there is nothing we can do to stop our young people voting “I gone”with their feet, as they are already voting “no children” with their wombs.
See how well we will do when our bright young people and their fertile wombs move elsewhere, see how our Humpty Dumptys will get them back again.
@ Simple SimonJune 15, 2017 at 1:14 PM
S S, your contribution is genuinely of a very high intellectual grade.
A most insightful view as to why Barbados would always remain a ‘developing’ nation whose ranking on the UN HDI would continue to be increasingly heading south.
A reliable and well-functioning public transport system is the sine qua non to economic advancement.
A well-managed public transport system is key to improving productivity and to creating a healthy environment and a socially integrated workforce.
The modern Barbados is failing badly where public transportation is concerned and along with a rather undisciplined workforce (and society) would always be the ‘limiting’ factors to the country’s future development; much unlike what prevails in Singapore.
Image: World’s ‘poorest president’ Uruguay’s Jose Mujica & his $1m VW …
Found on Google from youtube.com
@David June 15, 2017 at 3:07 PM “How many Transport Board buses do you estimate the $700,000 spent on two luxury vehicles for the Prime minister could have purchased? Bear in mind the TB has been nearly insolvent and unfit to procure new buses in recent years.”
Perhaps your question should be “why is the Transport Board nearly insolvent?
Maybe one of the bright young sparks on BU can give us a sensible, truthful answer?
Anything can be made insolvent by putting an idiot in charge.
Put a Devil in charge of Heaven …and you will have Hell.
Build a satanic monument in Paradise…..
@Bush Tea June 15, 2017 at 11:45 PM “Anything can be made insolvent by putting an idiot in charge.”
I think that you may have hit the nail on the head.