Another Heather Cole Column – Destruction of the Barbados Brand

A good name is rather to be chosen than great riches,
and loving favour rather than silver and gold.
Proverbs 22 Vs 1

From way back in the 17th Century when sugar was king, Barbados was a brand. It made the best sugar and the best rum. Even the first President of the USA visited in 1751. In the 1960’s with the filming of Island in the Sun, the brand Barbados was romanticized. It became the most desirable honeymoon spot and was regarded as a place of beauty that prompted many to insert on their list of places to visit. Nowadays, it is known as an exclusive tourist destination for jet set travellers especially from the UK including none other than Simon Cowell. The Merrymen have immortalized the name of our island in song, “Beautiful, beautiful Barbados, gem of Caribbean Sea...” The mixture of all of these; the historical, romanticism, beauty have created an allure to make the island a well-defined brand.

The island also benefited from a reputation of having a stable democratic government. It became a leader in the regional economic grouping CARICOM. Long before Rihanna became a sensation Barbados was a brand having established a good name and reputation for itself abroad. Now this all seems to have changed as the island has gone from being the brightest jewel in the English Crown to a struggling economy with mis-management at its epitome in the last 10 years .

The Prime Minister Freundel Stuart and all of his Ministers are to be squarely blamed for the economic situation that has adversely affected growth on the island. Chris Sinckler, the Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs, Donville Inniss, the Minister of Industry and International Business and Stephen Lashley the Minister of Sports and Culture have to date committed serious acts of infringement on the International credibility of Barbados. In addition, on the domestic scene many are now questioning the lack of judgement shown by the Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy, the Minister of Health John Boyce and the Minister of the Environment Dennis Lowe which has resulted in serious harm to the tourism product.

Of late the Minister of Finance has also devalued the sale price associated with the brand. Mr. Sinckler has operated for the last 9 years as the Minister of Finance and Economic Affairs. Management of the economy during his tenure has not been progressive for the local economy which was burdened with no less than 35 new taxes in this period. Mismanagement and his bad economic policies plunged the island into a home-made recession. Unable to meet any of his fiscal deficits targets, he resorted to continuous borrowing of funds on the international market. Ultimately the economic outlook for the island became one of negative growth amidst high taxation and borrowing. International credit rating agencies started to reduce the credit rating of the island making it more expensive to obtain international loans. Sinckler has been responsible for no less than 21 down-grades in the country’s credit ratings. He has made it difficult for the country to get low interest bearing loans. He has damaged the good name of Barbados. In the defense of Sinckler the Prime Minister provided a false narrative that was not based on any economic principles but that was appealing to the emotions of Barbadians. He said the rating agencies could not devalue Barbadians.

On December 3, 2017, the Nation newspaper reported that the Stephen Lashley Ministry of Sports and Culture had applied for a grant $100,000.00 of this approximately $94,000.00 was to pay contractors. UNESCO denied the application. Being denied a grant is not uncommon however, the newspaper noted that a terse response was sent to the Freundel Stuart Administration ” that it will not get one cent of the financing it applied for.’ If one reads between the lines, the Minister applied for a grant to pay for the services of contractors to prepare a report from which nothing was to be implemented. There being no checks and balances in local government for accessing cash; the Minister appeared to have tested the International waters to fraudulently obtain a grant without supporting evidence that a need was to be implemented. However, the UN agency sniffed a rat from the distance and said “no way jose,” His actions leads one to question how he could have been awarded a national honour, and why the Prime Minister did not break his silence on the matter or if he would be willing to invite the media to be present when he raises this issue with Mr. Lashley. Without a doubt, Mr. Lashley’s action of attempted fraud has hereby put any application from this island to the UN under the microscope and the possibility of Barbados not receiving any grants from the UNESCO in the near future. The UN may be of the opinion that all applications are fraudulent. He has damaged the good name of Barbados.

On December 6th, 2017, About 2 weeks ago it was also publicized that Barbados has been placed on the blacklist of countries conducting international business by the European Union (EU). The Minister of Industry and International Business, Donville Inniss said in a conference that he was shocked by the news that this had occurred. However, it was not the first time that the country was black listed under his watch. It previously occurred in 2015. Shame on him. He had two years to ensure that the requisite legislation had been put in place and enforced. The fact that it has happened again speaks to his incompetence to address the issues facing the Ministry for which he has responsibility. He too is responsible for the destruction of the Barbados Brand.

In addition to the above, the tourism product has been put at risk as a result of leaking sewage on the South Coast. The first response by the Minister of Tourism and the Minister of Health was to pull a publicity stunt of jumping in the sea instead of adequately addressing the problem. Recently, there was a description about the sewage on the South Coast on Expedia, accessible to anyone seeking information about Barbados. The judgement and failure on the part of both the Minister of Tourism and Health to adequately correct this problem in a timely matter has had a negative effect on the Barbados brand- enough to threaten the existence of the tourism product.

With the secrecy that surrounds the sale of the Hilton Hotel, one wonders on whose advice and on whose judgement, was the action taken to devalue this piece of real estate that has become synonymous with the Barbados brand. Nike will never devalue its shoes; or Roberto Cavalli devalue the prices of his dresses. One can go on and on regarding the major brands. Therefore, why should the price of the Hilton Hotel be sold way under value when there are even some houses on the West Coast of Barbados that are worth $80 Million? None of the fore mentioned brands are as old as the Barbados Brand and they would certainly not consider selling off a part of their image that was known for performing well for the proverbial “mess of pottage.” It would only be considered self- destruction. To date the Prime Minister has not said a word about the sale of the Hilton Hotel.

It must be noted that the Ministers of Government of the present Administration have not only entered the realm of corruption but they have graduated without consequences to their previous deeds and have now become so brazen that they can test the international bodies as in the case of Stephen Lashley and sell a hotel without following the established rules as in the case of Chris Sinckler, the Minister of Finance. These are the types of Ministers that the Prime Minister has raised. Without admonishing or firing them when they erred instead he has stood in their defense as in the criminal case with the Speaker of the House; trivialized the impact of their actions as he did with the information of the island’s 20th downgrade or; said nothing. He is simply not a leader.

With the fore-mentioned, it is clear that based on their actions that this brazen set of politicians will do anything to win the next general election. All the signs are there and the people have allowed them to perfect their craft. However, like a sick patient taking a combination of pills that will have life threatening effects on the body so too is the current status of Barbados. The cash strapped government is in a serious bind causing it to undertake the selling of the Hilton Hotel. There is a stench of desperation approaching that the island’s economy is on the verge of collapsing and the action of the Ministers are accelerating the collapse. One wonders if the Prime Minister really understands what is at stake?

108 comments

  • Would not live in Barbados

    I believe I am one of the few on this blog who has owned businesses in Barbados employing many local people including investing $hundreds of thousands in their training and development.

    I have seen the good and bad in the society.

    Like the Barbados Politicians who like to keep the people foolish with their heads buried in the sand continue spouting your ignorance.

    Those who want to continue to live in the shitty sewage and living hand to mouth whilst being misled and subjugated feel free to do so.

    Only an idiot or crook would put up with 35 new taxes in 9 years whilst take it without a fight.

    Sooner than later it will become Caracas where many of the population will be eating out of garbage cans.

    Venezuela has oil and mismanaged it by corruption, Barbados tourism and mismanaged by shit flowing in the street and no street protests just complain among themselves and on blogs.

    Politicians rich rich and laughing all the way to the Banks Regionally and Internationally whilst people ‘pray’ for a better day.

    Like

  • @civilizationmaker
    I was just waiting for some bad minded Bajan to start denigrating Jamaica. it never fails, you bad cooking bitches are so predictable.
    +++++++++++
    One swallow doesn’t make a summer

    Like

  • Would not live in Barbados

    @ civilizationmaker

    It is a part of a lot of ignorant Bajans DNA not all, but way too many.

    They not only try to denigrate Jamaicans but also St. Lucians, Guyanese, Africans etc.

    We all came from Africa dispersed to different countries and are all one, but ignorance has no bounds.

    That is why they will continue to wallow in shit on the streets and Barbados elected Politicians laugh at their ignorant asses all day with their riches whilst they suffer.

    Like

  • Would never live in the USA

    civilizationmaker December 20, 2017 at 5:07 PM #

    “I was just waiting for some bad minded Bajan to start denigrating Jamaica. it never fails, you bad cooking bitches are so predictable…”

    civilizationmaker

    Are they just as predictable as all those “bad cooking, bad minded bitches” that leave wonderful Jamaica en mass to live here illegally, squatting on the dump in St. Philip…….working in Nelson Street whore houses, such as Bridgette International, and can be often seen fighting for men on Bay Street (with at least 2 deaths), parading with bleached out faces, numerous tattoos and horrible weaves?

    My friend, the way Jamaicans behave in any other Caribbean island in which they reside legally or illegally……….. they do a much better job “denigrating Jamaica” themselves.

    Like

  • The court verdict does not prevent Vision from starting the construction of the hotel. If they do they stand the chance of losing their investment though if the appeal court goes with the decision.

    Like

  • @ Bush Tea

    The DLP PM and Ministers are CURSED.

    Like

  • With elections around the corner no investor would risk starting this project when the DLP government is so unpopular that many forecast a 28-2 defeat all over again.Hastenthe day that these sumsbeeches be consigned to the rubbish heap.gaul blind all ‘o dem especially Stuart,Carrington and lowedown the three most ineffective and lying bastids of all.

    Like

  • Say what you like about me for saying that when the ugly PM march all of his DLP MPs and yard-fowls to the wire, it is ELECTRICAL load

    Like

  • I know of nowhere in the US where shitty sewage could be flowing freely in the streets for 2 years close to businesses and homes.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    How about lead in the drinking water…?
    Know any place where that can happen…?

    Like

  • Theophilius Gazerts

    I would live in Barbados or USA or Trinidad. Wherever my relatives are, I gine.

    Like

  • @ Watchman
    The DLP PM and Ministers are CURSED.
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Wrong…
    Bajans are cursed…..

    The DLP PM and Ministers are demons…. with their very own pitchfork on the Garrison.

    Like

  • Here is what takes place in the Westminster system.A Minister lies and the PM demands his resignation.The old school tie and friendship did not matter.The ministerial code must be followed.Dont lie.Dont thief.Dont cheat.Thompson would have had to go on all counts.i hope some of these DLP ministers face the law courts for their infelicities.Commisiong and BIDC staff have shown the way.NCC should have done the same and haul lying Lowe ass before the court.Blak lip lying swine.

    https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2017/dec/20/damian-green-resigns-as-first-secretary-of-state-after-porn-allegations

    Like

  • Underworld Whistleblower

    @ Bushtea

    FLINT WATER CRISIS
    These are the 15 people criminally charged in the Flint water crisis

    https://www.freep.com/story/news/local/michigan/flint-water-crisis/2017/06/14/flint-water-crisis-charges/397425001/

    Does this happen in your corrupt Barbados?

    Who knows the shit toxins in Barbados tap water wasn’t there some questions about the Belle Pump prompted by a Canadian investigation.

    Like

  • Would not live in Barbados

    @ bajans

    You realise that America is 50 States right not some little speck in the ocean.

    American citizens and green card holders are free to move from State to State with many Agencies in each State there to assist them to get them off their feet.

    I will stand and keep saying anyone can be what they want to be in the US.

    Just like in Barbados a lot of people become stagnant and blame all types of things for their lack of progress instead of seeking greener pastures.

    Foreign people, for the most part, come with a different attitude and hunger that is why most of them progress knowing what they left behind.

    Like

  • re I will stand and keep saying anyone can be what they want to be in the US.
    Really? What bovine excrement!
    You mean as a maid or cook or lowly worker or handy man? or if you have a food “twuck”?

    Like

  • Would not live in Barbados

    @ Georgie Porgie

    Nothing wrongs with those honest jobs everyone can’t be a white collar professional.

    Even those jobs pay 3 times as much as a similar job in Barbados?

    It will take a Bajan 3 weeks to earn what is earned in 1 week in the US that is a no-brainer.

    Like

  • LOL @ WNLIB
    Boss, Take it easy…
    Nobody wants you to live in Barbados.

    This brass bowl place is f%$#& up enough already…. why would we need you?
    …to add more brass? You seem quite happy living among the albino-centrics…. shiite, you sound like a full convert – congrats.

    We were here on BU quite happily cussing brass bowl Bajans
    …before you came in with your lament.
    You have added nothing new….

    You would not live here…
    We do not want you..
    Everyone seems happy … right?

    @ Underworld Whistleblower
    15 people criminally charged? …great!
    Skippa, we do that sorta thing here too
    …. then 20 years later, the cases are discontinued
    for lack of any living witnesses, accused, or defendants

    Besides, what are we to do?
    Lock up the whole damn population?
    The place is full of brass bowl clowns.
    As Caswell says, everybody is either awaiting their turn….
    ..or guilty of some previous shiite.
    So who will bell the cat…? YOU?

    Like

  • re bajans December 20, 2017 at 7:57 PM #

    What is described in your posts is rampant in many areas of the USA. i HAVE SEEN SIMILAR SITUATIONS ALONG THE BORDER WITH TEXAS AND MEXICO………also in FLORIDA.

    USA IS NOT REALLY THE GREATEST COUNTRY IN THE WORLD EVER!……AS THEY CLAIM ON TV NIGHTLY.

    Like

  • Well Well & Cut N' Paste At Your Service

    Lol…the US was never as advertised, damn frauds but free enterprise and various opportunities existed back then and some are still available even now, if you can find a fit.

    Like

  • DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. – Crews are working to clean up several major sewage spills in DeKalb County.
    More than 200,000 gallons of sewage have spilled since Monday, according to officials with the DeKalb County Department of Watershed Management. They said the spills are connected to heavy rain and flash flooding from earlier this week. 
    Channel 2’s Wendy Corona saw sewage spills on Melanie Court just before 12 p.m. Tuesday.
    Homeowner Robert Fagin showed Corona his flooded backyard, and shared his frustrations about the lack of a permanent resolution to an ongoing issue. 
    Fagin said the overflow created what looked like a lake in his backyard. He said this time the sewage did not get into his basement, but did flow into Shoal Creek.

    Fagin said he complains to the county every time it happens.

    “Every time it rains, the sewage in the backyard keeps coming up and overflowing into the yard and they say there’s no sewage back there but it still smells like it,” Fagin said. “You call them and all they do is come back and put dirt on there and then call it a day. Put dirt on the wound, call it a day and then tell you to go suck it up.”
    We’re working to learn the latest about the cleanup.
    Refresh this page for updates on WSBTV.com.
    Trending Now – Most Read Stories

    Like

  • who said did kinda shite don’t happen in the USA is either ignorant or a damn liar.

    Like

  • Trump channeling Kim Jung Un.

    Asslicking maximised. lol

    Like

  • Just read this from massa Reginald Hunte:

    “it was part and parcel of Barbadian culture to wait for what is owed and Barbadians should therefore not get bent out of shape if Government were also slow to pay.”

    The massa telling his slaves that they have to shut up. Barbados has more than one problem. 250 years ago, white massas cussed Africans, today black massas do the same.

    Like

  • “it was part and parcel of Barbadian culture to wait for what is owed and Barbadians should therefore not get bent out of shape if Government were also slow to pay.”
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    In a way he is right!!!!!

    It is called tolerance!!!!

    It is a Quaker value!!!!

    Bajans were at one time Quakers!!!

    BUUUUUUUUUUUT ……………. Bajans did it because they were dealing with honourable people, some of them fellow Quakers.

    It actually worked, but only if the two parties were honourable!!

    Quakers are rebels so don’t be fooling with them!!

    From what I read, they prefer peace …. but still, were not shy on standing on principle!!

    Like

  • John…
    You could really get some sleep when the nights come…
    rather than persisting with your fairy tale Quaker shiite…
    Quakers were just another set of misguided white devils
    looking to exploit whosoever they could for a dollar

    Like you, they were probably just too weak to do it vi et armes
    ….so they too came up with the lotta ‘hairy fairy’ shiite talk instead.

    Bushie is beginning to conclude that it is you who chased Vincent from BU….
    poor fellow probably came to his senses and realised that you were talking pure shiite…
    and ra- outa pure shame.
    LOL
    ha ha ha
    Murduh!!

    Like

  • Whats this barbadians should carry ransom money???????this is getting really stupid now

    Like

  • Tolerance has a magical way of working ….., it is common sense really!!

    In a society based on Tolerance as existed in the past the intolerant stick out like sore thumbs.

    They have no option but to change!!

    You may have missed out on Aesop’s Fable of the North Wind and the Sun so here is a clip.

    Like

  • https://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2017/12/18/trump_a_nation_that_is_not_proud_of_its_history_cannot_be_confident_in_its_future.html

    Barbadians don’t even how their history!!!

    How can they be confident in their country’s future?!!

    Liked by 1 person

  • millertheanunnaki

    @ John December 21, 2017 at 8:39 AM

    Dear John, you really have to come off the fence and decide which god you would like to serve.

    Is it your desert god Yahweh or the Quaker Sun?

    Who really rules this planet and control things?

    The ONE on High to which all must submit like Abraham did to Allah as the rays of knowledge (word) streamed from on high or the One which allows its face to shine upon you and give you peace (of mind)?

    It’s your Hobson’s choice which only God can make for you.

    Why not join the brotherhood of the children of the Sun who will forgive you for treating those over-baked by its rays too harshly during those years in captivity whether in ‘Philistine’ Pharaoh Egypt or in Jewish Quaker Barbados.

    Like

  • Bajans heads in the Clouds

    Barbados is so backward I just bought a 11lb Honey ham for US$19 (BD$38) same Ham in Barbados is over BD$$200.

    Who would want to live in a ripoff place where the money has no value?

    Like

  • Bajans heads,

    Thanks to 51 years of independence and to clueless locals trying to emulate the British governmental system, the Barbados Dollar is just good enough as toilet paper or wallpaper. It is a Mickey Mouse currency without any real value.

    Like

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