It is also about the right to dissent in a civilized manner. Genuine political opposition is a necessary attribute of democracy, tolerance, and trust in the ability of citizens to resolve differences by peaceful means. The existence of an opposition, without which politics ceases and administration takes over, is indispensable to the functioning of parliamentary political systems. If these systems are perceived as not working well – as being “seriously overloaded,” to quote a distinguished Canadian Opposition Leader, the Hon. Robert Stanfield – it may be the rights of political oppositions which are immediately and most visibly at stake, but ultimately the threat is to democratic rights and freedoms generally. The following paper is an attempt to come to grips with the challenging nature of the opposition’s role in Parliament, specifically in the Canadian context – THE OPPOSITION IN A PARLIAMENTARY SYSTEM

Senator Caswell Franklyn has been scathing in his criticism of a few decisions made by the newly installed Mia Mottley government. He has expressed in the usual caustic manner his disagreement with the appointments of David Comissiong and Charles Jong as Ambassador of CARICOM and Director of Communications respectively. Caswell’s issue with the appointments is why should taxpayers have to fund the two positions. And isn’t the Government Information Service (GIS) equipped to deliver the same support.

Another story caught the eye of the blogmaster this week – a widely promoted DLP lunchtime lecture by former minister Donville Inniss was abruptly cancelled by Freundel Stuart. Although the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) was rejected at the polls on the 24 May 2018, the executive of the party with Freudel Stuart as leader remains firmly in position until August when the AGM is scheduled to elect officers of the party.

The two news events reminded the blogmaster to confirm the role of an Opposition in the parliamentary democracy we strive to practice in Barbados. The following summarizes the importance of an Opposition which is to “check and prod, but ultimately to replace the government party“.

In the early life of the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) government many social commentators will be inclined to be less strident during the traditional “honeymoon period”. That said, it should not include the Leader of the Opposition Bishop Joseph Atherley whom the Constitution of Barbados supports in the role. In the first six weeks of the Mottley government we have had several ‘questionable’ decisions taken that merit fuller explanation. It does not mean the decisions are illegal, it has more to do with the citizenry being eternally vigilant which is the price to be paid to keep a fragile democracy alive.

A few questions have been asked about the process that led to the appointment of Atherley by the Governor General Sandra Mason. Many suspect the 30-0 result at the last poll created a lacuna and the result has given rise to a contrived opposition presence in the House of Assembly. To date Senator Caswell Franklyn in the Upper House has been more vocal in the role as ‘opposition’ compared to the Leader of the Opposition in the Lower House. It is early days but some say first impressions count!

What does all of this have to do with the cancellation of Donville Inniss’ lunch time lecture?

The DLP received the most votes in the last general election from the also-rans. In the minds of many Barbadians it is the de facto opposition voice. In the first past the post system 33, 985 votes were cast for the DLP which created a 30-0 result that will forever  haunt the party. What has piqued the interest of the blogmaster is the lack of urgency by the DLP party to embrace the role of opposition from outside the House of Assembly. A feeble attempt was made by Inniss, Estwick, De Peiza and Lashley to offer critique of the BLP’s mini budget. We understand the party needs to organize itself by having the obligatory retreats and election of officers but is there an opportunity being missed by the party to re-establish itself quickly? The nothingness coming from the party post 2018 General Election is not unlike the period when late David Thompson fell sick in the role as prime minister and Stuart again was guilty of doing nothing.

How long will the DLP continue be Missing In Action? Will another rise up to fill the vacuum?






  • Back then there was no sewer plant
    What we have now is a swamp lwhich was caught up in bad govt decisions and political interference being tossed out to sea and totally destroyed by toxins


  • @William

    You must be listening to Chrystal Austin on Brasstacks today? She seems a little out of her depth regarding financial issues of the day but she has potential?


  • William Skinner

    @ David
    Yes I am. She is impressive.


  • William Skinner

    I have refrained from this whole sewage debate in any detail.
    However I will say at the basic level, as a community, we have become very dirty and don’t seem to give a damn about how we care and or keep our surroundings.
    How can any citizen throw diapers, sanitary napkins etc in a sewage system? How can any sensible citizen
    just leave garbage along the highway and dump old appliances anywhere they choose?
    We have become s dirty lot !!!!!!!!


  • @William Skinner July 9, 2018 11:33 AM “How can any citizen throw diapers, sanitary napkins etc in a sewage system? How can any sensible citizen.”

    Dear William: Not forgetting the sensible citizens who throw CONDOMS in a sewer system.

    But the people who run the sewer systems must run a continuing public education program. For example I did not know until recently that one should not throw dental floss into a sewer system. Image the sewer systems here and over in away that I have damaged by throwing my floss into the system. After all if I am in the bathroom the most logical thing seems to time that I should throw my used floss throw the floss down the toilet. If nobody educated me otherwise how was I supposed to know?


  • Of course some of those same nasty citizens throw their used condoms ‘longside the road.


  • https://www.thameswater.co.uk/binit
    Bin it. Don’t flush it.


  • @Hal Austin July 9, 2018 8:14 AM “The official date of the ban on DDT is important since use after that date constitutes a criminal offence. But this is Barbados, a failed state. A few years ago I stayed at a hotel in St James, I think it was the Discovery, and there was a stream or an outsize gutter spewing in to the sea, just yards away from where people were bathing.”

    St. James person here: What you likely saw next to Discovery was the “Hole” after which Holetown is named. The “Hole” is a completely natural wetland which has been there for likely hundreds of thousands of years. When Discovery was being built my dad who worked as a builder most of his life felt that the hotel should not have been build there, but capitalists wish to quickly maximise their return on investments by siting hotels directly on beaches and wetlands do not listen to elderly builders who have lived in the area for decades. And of course since the “Hole” is the natural drainage point for St. James/St. Thomas uplands, the built retaining walls are periodically damaged which of increases maintenance costs.


  • @Hal Austin July 9, 2018 8:14 AM “a stream or an outsize gutter spewing…”

    So no the wetland was not spewing, which is a negative word.

    The wetland was doing its natural duty which is to lead water into the sea

    The wetland was doing what wetlands have always done and will always do. Nothing at all wrong with the wetland.

    But I do question the judgement of those who build on wetlands.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @David July 7, 2018 4:43 PM “David July 7, 2018 4:43 PM “…lure the Chrystal Austins et al from the other parties…”

    The DLP as presently constituted is a party of slow, old fashioned, old men. I am not too sure that they love women, especially bright young women very much.

    But I am only a simpleton, so I might be wrong, wrong, wrong.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Hants July 7, 2018 4:36 PM “The DLP should focus on rebuilding the party so they are ready in five years.”

    The DLP is taking a three month honeymoon first.

    Since they were unable to consummate a marriage with the electorate I am not at all sure why they need a honeymoon.

    But as I am only a simpleton, I may well be completely wrong.


  • @Hal “It is as good a bet as any that the DLP will be out of power for a generation.”

    In thirty years time the electorate not yet born will be asking Owen who? Mia who? Freundel who? etc.

    And I hope that the named gentlemen and lady will be enjoying their well deserved retirements.


  • @Prodigal Son July 7, 2018 10:10 PM “…people are saying that Mia was dealt a bad hand and it is going to take sometime to turn around things and that people need to have patience.”

    We are willing to be patient.

    We understand that the DLP mismanaged.

    But Mia was not dealt a bad hand.

    She was not in a casino.

    She worked long and hard to become Prime Minister and Minister of Finance. She asked for the job. She wanted the job. The job was not imposed on her.

    If an idiot like me could see that the DLP was mismanaging, I am sure that a smart woman like Mia could see that too.

    Yet still she wanted the job–it may well be the worse job in Barbados–but she asked for it. She desired it. She wanted it.

    Now she has it.

    Hit the ground running…and don’t stop.

    Liked by 1 person

  • l@ooking on July 8, 2018 9:17 AM “let me make it clear..the last administration lost mostly because they are perceived as corrupt…secondly, EWB.”

    Erroll Barrow died in May 1987. Anybody who voted for the first time in Barrow’s last election, that of 1986 was born in 1969 and is now 49 years old, next election those people will be 55 year old and almost ready to retire.

    It is way past time that the DLP bury Erroll Barrow, or at least let him stay dead. Errol Barrow has no resonance with those voters aged between 18 and 50.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Boy did she hit the ground running so fast that fire came flying off her feet and into the hands of taxpayers
    Hope she stop running very soon before the whole place is caught on fire and barbados bun down









  • Now only if this govt would stop using Worthing Beach as a waste disposal depot
    That measure would be a good starting point for change


  • @ukbajan July 8, 2018 4:32 PM “DDT – “…was used as a general purpose weedkiller in Barbados many years ago.”

    @Hal Austin July 8, 2018 5:05 PM. “Apart from its use in argriculture, many homes used to use it to get rid of bed bugs.”

    DDT is NOT, repeat NOT a herbicide. It is an insceticide. And yes it was used in all homes for killing mosquitoes and bedbugs, and very effective it was too. A couple of generations have grow up who have never seen a bedbug. And then it was discovered how dangerous DDT is

    And the buggers are back:




  • https://www.worldatlas.com/articles/is-ddt-still-being-used.html
    Is DDT Still Being Used?
    Although the pesticide [DDT] was banned in many countries, some countries in Africa, Asia, and South America needed the pesticide for mosquito control in order to reduce the risk of malaria. In 2006, WHO supported the indoor use of DDT in African countries where malaria remained a major challenge. The organization stated that the benefits of the pesticides to African countries outweighed the adverse effects it had on the environment. India and North Korea have continued the use of the pesticides for agricultural use despite the ban. Approximately 4,000 tons of DDT are produced annually for the vector control program. It is legal to manufacture DDT in the US, though it can only be exported for use in foreign nations. DDT can only be used in the US for public health emergencies, such as controlling vector disease. Today, DDT is manufactured in North Korea, India, and China. India remains the largest consumer of the product for vector control and agricultural use. China produces 4,500 metric tons of the product of which 80–90% is used to produce Dicofol, an acaricide. African countries do not use the product for agricultural purposes but countries such as Ethiopia, South Africa, Uganda, and Swaziland use it to control malaria.


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