NIS Virus

Barbados Underground has been exhaustive in its prosecution of the mismanagement of the National Insurance Scheme (NIS). Government after government has mismanaged the Scheme. The issues range from faulty governance practices, late production and availability of actuarial reports, updated certified audited financial statements, appointment of incompetent individuals to the board, questionable IT decisions, questionable investment decisions…

As usual, taxpayers are left holding the ‘bag’.

The raging COVID19 pandemic has exposed the vulnerability of the NIS which has come has no surprise to some members of the BU family. To be expected the partisan political players will seize the opportunity to criticize to feed a rabid political appetite. The time has come however to have a mature discussion about the state of the NIS and what measures are urgently needed to protect the fund.

Is it possible for Barbadians to understand the importance of a dispassionate debate about the NIS?

Is it possible for politicians to understand the time has come to address structural deficiencies how the NIS is being managed?

Chairman of the fund Leslie Haynes declared this week the NIS Board has submitted a paper to Cabinet to approve the transition to a Statutory Board. Elsewhere in the press Leader of the Opposition Joseph Atherley has questioned how the NIS and Central Bank of Barbados are being managed.

Relevant link:

Discussed for 100 marks

126 comments

  • NorthernObserver

    All one need do is read the reasons given, (in the referenced GIS article) for becoming a Statutory Board (not a bad thing IMO) and one can appreciate this is already mired in misdirection and obfuscation. It is the furthest of reaches (too far?) to imply staff and staffing challenges, at the NIS, are the roots of the entity’s challenges.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Well finally someone at the very top comes out and voices serious concern over the continuous mismanagement of the fund. I admire Leslie Haynes for laying the cards out, then again anyone that knows him will tell you he only will take so much. I wouldn’t be surprised to learn he has resigned as Tony Marshall did a while back.

    So what does that tell us? Well it confirms the mismanagement of the fund has no political colour as both parties are equally poor at managing it. One printed government paper and the made the NIS buy 2 billion dollars roughly in it, the other could not print due to the IMF being the overload so simply misappropriated the money in the fund.

    Can wait to hear the fowls on either side of the fence fight this was one out. Lol

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  • @ John A

    The scheme may be mismanaged by both parties, but fundamentally it is a flawed scheme, not fit for purpose. It will take someone to come down from Heaven to make it work perfectly.
    It needs restructuring, and urgently.

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  • David
    No, to all the substantive questions asked above.

    Elsewhere you presume that some good could become of this duopoly system.

    We will contend that not even the eventual failure, collapse, of the NIS could make any difference within the political system, such as we like it.

    And if we are so feckless as to play fast and loose with the retirement savings of most Bajans then “crappo should smoke we pipe.”

    Liked by 1 person

  • Mia appointed Haynes to the board, so why does he have to come out in the press to beseech for any upgrades or whatever, he could have CALLED HER…and have it done….so what game are these two playing AGAINST BLACK PEOPLE….

    NO ..this is MISDIRECTION.

    Liked by 1 person

  • “Leslie Haynes”

    ya can’t even get a personal injury case finished, settled, closed in the supreme court because these types OBSTRUCT every time ya try……and yall wil believe the bullshit coming from them, when the highest court in the Caribbean know that they are fraudulent..

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  • @NO

    Is there value in the transition to a statutory board? How has this helped the QEH for example.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @Pacha

    Is this what you are forecasting, collapse of the NIS?

    Liked by 1 person

  • ‘Push reforms to protect against economic shocks’ – IDB study – ‘Push reforms to protect against economic shocks’ – IDB study: https://barbadostoday.bb/2021/03/05/push-reforms-to-protect-against-economic-shocks-idb-study/

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  • NorthernObserver

    @David
    to use your terminology, this maybe an attempt to ring-fence the NIS. I am unsure of its likely success.
    Note, we heard from the Chair and the Managing Director (Ag) and neither made any reference to the outstanding Annual Reporting, nothing about when to expect the Tri-annual NIS Audit.
    The news? They had redeemed some Bonds early to fund the depleted Unemployment Fund. [no cash available elsewhere?]
    The biggest NIS challenge would appear to be teefing of employees from the NIS, hence the need to ring-fence those employees from other prying Ministries.
    @JohnA mentioned “mismanagement” but I never heard that term, nor the insinuation of it.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @NO

    One has to speculate why the move to SB for the reasons offered. SBs have not been managed well in Barbados if we are to judge from AGs reports. The fund is too important for the matter not to be offered for public comment.

    Liked by 1 person

  • NorthernObserver

    IMO…little speculation. Mariposa will shout ‘smoke and mirrors’. How could the reporters have failed to ask about Annual Statements or the Actuarial Audit?? When do they get to ask questions of the Chair and MD(Ag)?

    Liked by 1 person

  • David

    A basis rule of insurance savings is that investments are to be made in low risk products.

    For several decades now government has been violating this simple rule and raiding the NIS to fund all types of high risk ventures. And we consider the government of Barbados and its paper to be too risky for the Scheme as well.

    More broadly, globally such savings are being turned over to private sector interests lacking a commitment to any sense of public good. For example, Four Seasons.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Of course, there are demographic and other problems faced by the NIS

    Just a matter of time before something will have to give.

    Liked by 1 person

  • One of the issues proffered by the NIS over the years is the scarcity of forex to support aggressive foreign investment.

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  • One of the issues proffered by the NIS over the years is the scarcity of forex to support aggressive foreign investment…….(Quote)

    What?

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  • David

    We are well aware of that fact. It has been a genuine problem for decades.

    There was a time when Charles Herbert had asked government to allow him to manage the NIS investment funds.

    We are however more concerned about the declining numbers of young workers to pensioners and so on. There is no way in current circumstances that we could naturally increase the population by 80 000, or a similar number, as Mugabe estimates. This problem, the result of the genocide by of Gollop and the Family Planning Association, cannot be easily solved. Is an actuarial nightmare

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  • This is not the NIS of Humphrey Walcott.

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  • We are not a failed state but are reaching a point where there are more and more no easy answers

    Liked by 1 person

  • @Pacha

    You may recall in the 90s Sandiford forced private insurance companies to liquidate pension monies invested overseas. The reducing tax base is a problem.

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  • David
    Very well, yes

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  • NIS virus or incompetence
    I dare say the latter
    So with and ageing population and high unemployment the Next NIS IS akin to riding a dead horse
    The only way back up is to increase the funding
    However in order to do so govt would have to release some of the stranglehold of taxes off the shoulders of people
    Govt had no qualms to ensure that its financial obligations to the IMF was kept
    Hence inlike manner and zeal unload some debt off the people shoulders and apply a moral gumption for the people in a policy towards helping them

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  • Wasn’t Leslie Haynes a director of CLICO at one time?

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  • NorthernObserver

    For clarification….were monies liquidated, or, were certain firms (and I believe it went beyond Insurance) asked to use their assets to back loans to the GoB?

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  • NorthernObserver

    Anyways, we are HERE. Without some factual in-depth understanding of the overall financial situation, proposing actions is like tossing darts in the dark.

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  • “Whoa unto those who rob the poor of their rights.”

    Liked by 1 person

  • In one of her speeches soon after winning government, Mottley signaled the NIS is a problem and at some some the government will have to address it. Are we there yet?

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  • David
    We are minded that this issue is not within the power of Mugabe to fix. Not at this time,

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  • Well Covid 19 is not helping.

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  • The reasons for the poor state of the NIS are obvious: the DLP totally ran down the NIS from 2008 to 2018. I only remember the Apes Hill scandal, where the blue GOB at that time misappropriated NIS funds for the benefit of their master COW.

    Our Supreme Leader alone is capable of stabilizing the NIS. Mia Mottley is our very last hope. As always.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Not even on a time value of money basis.
    Can Mugabe stabilize the NIS by adding 80, 000 additional young people to the workers’ roll? If so she’s really Supreme in trute!

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  • Public Notice: Severance payment applications & employers – Public Notice: Severance payment applications & employers: https://barbadostoday.bb/2021/03/05/public-notice-severance-payment-applications-employers/

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  • Pacha,

    We need 80000 old rich investors to build a villa in our country and employ many locals for housing, furniture, gardening etc pp, no young needy immigrants. We already have enough loafers, freeloaders, welfare recipients and civil servants who cost taxpayers a lot of money. If each of these people invests just $25000 a year with us, that would be 2 billion a year! Permanently.

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  • The NIS has a major problem that they do not want to address. They have a massive portfolio of non performing government paper, coupled to large exposure in over priced realestate. In other words the value of their real estate holdings based on cost overruns and inflated building cost, can not give them a decent return in todays rental market.

    When you have more than half your portfolio returning say 1 percent and inflation running at 3 percent, the problem is obvious. Then you have the cash flow problem caused by the debt restructuring, where $2 billion dollars that was earning 7% fell to where it now earns 1% to 2%. That alone is $180 million annual shortfall roughly.

    We then add to this massive unemployment claims coupled to the lost of contributions from 40,000 who lost their jobs to Covid. One could say what we have on our hands here is the most vulnerable the NIS has ever been since its inception. The days of placing a plaster on the wound has past, only amputation can save the patient now.

    Question is who got the cuhoonas to take up the scalpel ?

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  • John A

    You’re mixing apples and oranges. The NIS has different pockets for these benefits.

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  • @Pacha

    That’s right and when you start picking the apples faster than planned because the oranges pocket empty is when the domino effect starts.

    Liked by 1 person

  • DavidMarch 5, 2021 3:36 PM @Pacha Is this what you are forecasting, collapse of the NIS?

    Maybe the better question is whether it has already collapsed?? I agree with John A. It is obvious, even without seeing financial statements, that the returns from investments cannot fulfill future actuarial obligations.

    Add that the financial statements…. do not exist?! How can that RH be? What RHery is that? I though that some fancy people were helping sort it? But that is when you have people who do not know their x from their elbow and also refuse to tell it like it is.

    Financial statements do not exist…..beejeesus as the rumshop drunk would say. Total foolery.

    But you know what those statements would probably show? As John A says, lack of liquidity in investments, write downs in both real estate and bond holdings.

    The big question is, ARE THE FUNDS LIQUID?!!!

    Really, what has been funding the NIS is current contributions. As the pandemic has caused these to dry up, the issue has come to the fore, even if it did not take a twelve year old with common entrance maths to see that long ago.

    Why has the fund reached this state? As others said, borrowing by the government for structural and operational funds. LACK OF PAYMENT OF NIS CONTRIBUTIONS BY MANY. How many companies have not paid and even went into liquidation owing the NIS?

    The directors of those companies are directly liable for the NIS funds not paid in. How many have been charged?????? That is theft plain and simple. How many???? But noooooo, rather charge some fella from the gully for smoking one blasted spliff. Stupse.

    Bunch of jackxsses.

    Then, how did the one from the West coast that the guvment bail out, the faweigner, has he been investigated for the collapse of that particular venture?

    Like Walter Mattheson, from Kings Beach, who allegedly walked through the airport wid a prior DLP guvment Minister on his way out.

    Stupse….Since then it shoulda been fixed. But life too sweet fuh some.

    And wunna wonder why the NIS is brek?!!?? Wunna serious??!!??

    Look, ignore all the fancy talk. The NIS is brek.

    Prove otherwise, produce the audited financial statements, that an auditor sign off. But then, nowadays one wonders if that means much, too many high profile international cases where the company collapsed even after years of clean audit reports.

    Ask Northern and John A bout dat.

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  • Indeed! Woe AND whoa unto them.!

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  • Source: Nation Newspaper

    Liked by 1 person

  • “Why has the fund reached this state? As others said, borrowing by the government for structural and operational funds. LACK OF PAYMENT OF NIS CONTRIBUTIONS BY MANY. How many companies have not paid and even went into liquidation owing the NIS?

    The directors of those companies are directly liable for the NIS funds not paid in. How many have been charged?????? That is theft plain and simple. How many???? But noooooo, rather charge some fella from the gully for smoking one blasted spliff. Stupse.”

    Hope yall don’t let these liars and frauds off the hook, look at Haynes trying to pull a fast one on the people..look hard and see who they are covering up for, buying time for them to sell and leave the island..

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  • @ John A
    @ Crusoe

    Do we know if any of the hotels benefiting from the Bds$300m handout are in default on VAT, national insurance contributions, income tax or land tax?
    Do we know if they all pay corporation taxes (ie on profits), or are they trading at a loss or break even? Do they claim other state benefits, such as company motor vehicles and other executive expense claims?
    @John A the major problem the NIS has is that it is not fit for purpose. It is rubbish. We earlier had someone who posted a joke that Charles Herbert asked to manage the NIS investments.
    I laughed myself to sleep. Maybe he should start by going through the legacy investments of the Mutual, which in my view was badly mishandled.
    Sadly the Mutual was turned in to a political argument, headed by Hillary Beckles, rather than one about finance and demutualisation. We paid for our collective ignorance.

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  • @ Crusoe March 6, 2021 2:53 AM
    (Quote):
    Why has the fund reached this state? As others said, borrowing by the government for structural and operational funds. LACK OF PAYMENT OF NIS CONTRIBUTIONS BY MANY. How many companies have not paid and even went into liquidation owing the NIS?

    The directors of those companies are directly liable for the NIS funds not paid in. How many have been charged?????? That is theft plain and simple. How many???? But noooooo, rather charge some fella from the gully for smoking one blasted spliff. (Unquote).
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    Your scathing criticism but ‘constructive’ contribution only reinforces what some BU family members with foresight have been observing (with the inevitable fallout) all along ably led by the well-informed and ‘experienced’ Walter Blackman in the role of chief prosecutor.

    The NIS is in its current state (and sadly heading for the same fate as LIAT) primarily because of downright mismanagement at both the technical and political levels.

    As Caswell Franklyn may agree, how can the NIS management bring charges against dishonest and recalcitrant company directors (as required under the Act)
    when the same directors are in cahoots with the same political class who sleep together in the same incestuously corrupt bed?

    From whom do you think members of the political class receive “contributions” to help fund their electioneering jamborees?

    With contributions of ‘largesse’ from their respective political party members or from behind-the-scenes business benefactors with deep pockets full of humanitarianism towards the development of the country?

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  • “Like Walter Mattheson, from Kings Beach, who allegedly walked through the airport wid a prior DLP guvment Minister on his way out.”

    reinforces what we have said for years, it proves the LENGTH OF TIME…that there has been SELLOUTISM directed at the Black marjority and perpetrated by the SELLOUTS in the CURSED parliament..it’s ALWAYS HAPPENED…ya can’t get the negros to be LOYAL to the people who elected them, never could, never will..they are born and bred TRAITORS……..this Mattheson matter happened sometime in the 80s or earlier….that is DECADES AGO…and it’s still happening.

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  • @ david

    Lets look at what we do know About the fund even without audited financials based on the holdings you published. We will keep it simple I promise.

    Lets look at the NIS fund with a claimed asset base of $3.8B only for this exercise and ask our selves what is the yield from this overstated asset base,1 so here goes.

    The fund needs to return roughly 8% or $300 million annually on its investment base to keep up with demand and to have some factor of self capitalisation, that we know is a historic fact. So how is the 3.8b working for us there. Well let’s look at just one component that as we say “cat spraddle” the earning base and that was the debt restructuring.

    If we take the fact that the fund was holding $2B in Sinkyuh worthless paper which was generating 7% roughly before the restructuring, that was yielding then roughly $140 million a year. After the restructuring that fell to roughly $20 million a year as the rate was a little over 1% there after. So that one blow caused the fund a shortfall in cash annually of nearly $120 million dollars !

    So in order to meet the target 8% return of the $3.8B that means the other holdings of the fund, like the overstated real estate holding of a claimed $1.9 billion, would have to earn $280 million which with the $20 million from the restructured bond holdings, would give us the $300 million in targeted annual earnings i laid out at the beginning on the total asset base yield. To do that it means the real estate “investments ” for lack of a better word, would have to produce an average return of just over 15% net of expenses which is basically impossible, as the average return on such investment barely scrapes 5% if you lucky.

    So what does the above tell us? Well the fund while having some assets which are yet to be confirmed, is technically insolvent. Even on its claimed asset base of $3.9b it probably in real terms is generating if we lucky, no more that 2% a year. The true value of the fund probably is no more than $2B in total again if we lucky, at todays Market value.

    But you know what pisses me off the most? Over a year ago a handful of us were here on this blog explaining the dire state the fund is in and neither the opposition or the press could be bothered to pursue the issue then. I therefore give both of wunna a F.

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  • Vincent Codrington

    @ David BU at 5 :59 AM
    In view of the information you posted, how can the NIS funds be said to be mismanaged ? How can there not be financial statements? I think posters and commenters need to distinguish between published audited statements and the absence of financial accounts, and accountability. The staff at NIS are well qualified and very competent. As usual we are too concerned with form and not substance. It would be beneficial if members of the BU household investigate the reasons why there are no published audited reports.

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  • @ Vincent

    To be honest at this stage the financial statement i did not even bother to mention, instead I just spoke to our financial reality based on what we do know.

    Liked by 1 person

  • The problem is not the staff at the NIS either its the interfering politicians from both parties who think the fund is their political piggy bank when all else fails.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Vincent Codrington

    @ John A
    You are usually more balanced than most commenters on BU.Please get back on track. The viability of NIS depend on the demographics of the working force/ contributors, the state of the financial markets local and international ,and forbearance of the political directorate from putting financial burdens on the Fund that it was not designed for.

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  • Vincent Codrington

    @ John A

    I was probably typing my intervention while you were setting my mind at rest. I think we are still on the same track. We need to concentrate on the fundamentals and ignore the “white noise”. The latter is used in its engineering sense.

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  • @ Vincent

    Agree with you there for sure. The funds money needs to be made unavailable to the MOF. I make no apologies for saying that and I speak to ALL MOFS be they blue red or any other colour.

    If you notice I say mismanaged but did not say by the NIS staff. The ability of any MOF to tamper with the assets of many is the problem. The fund was not designed as a fail all financial tool for government and its that simple. Now if this is not addressed it would not surprise me if Leslie does not resign shortly.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Who knows maybe the answer is to turn the fund over to a private entity to administer free from political interference as some suggest. One thing is for sure the plan now ain’t working.

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  • “With contributions of ‘largesse’ from their respective political party members or from behind-the-scenes business benefactors with deep pockets full of humanitarianism towards the development of the country?”

    all ya seeing is DECAY..they continue to pour taxpayers and pensioners money INTO THIEVES…there is no refund, dividends or interest payments in that except for bribes for the sellouts.

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  • “But you know what pisses me off the most? Over a year ago a handful of us were here on this blog explaining the dire state the fund is in and neither the opposition or the press could be bothered to pursue the issue then. I therefore give both of wunna a F.”

    i think we have all been around long enough to know that they DON’T RESPOND to or ACKNOWLEDGE anything pertaining to the loss to taxpayers and pensioners that they caused, they sit quiety and wish it would all go away or send out their imps and pimps with the 40 YEAR OLD COVER STORY and same repetitious scam….no deviation or upgrade from the ancient corrupt script.

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  • @Vincent

    There is management reporting to satisfy management and then there is the actuarial report/audited reports meant to satisfy a purpose. What are roles and responsibilities?

    We all agree to one thing, the taxpayers is the bailout option of last resort. The lack of timely actuarial reports and actioning speaks to one thing – inefficiency and incompetence.

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  • @ John A

    The problem with the NIS is not the so-called demographic timebomb nor the incompetence of the junior and middle management staff or government interference. So 80000 new citizens will only cause social conflict, but it will not remedy the basic problem.
    The senior management, for generations, has been incompetent, but that is like rolling a block of ice up a volcano. They have been given an impossible task.
    If all the actuarial reports and audited figures came in on time as as transparent as glass, it will not make a flawed system perfect.
    The problem is that the design of the scheme is not fit for purpose, it urgently needs reform. As to the performance of stock markets, we just cannot make those bold claims. They must be spelt out.
    We need a totally new system. The IDB has just said more or less the same thing. We cannot patch this system and get it to work. Dump it and start anew.

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  • (Quote):
    @ David BU at 5 :59 AM
    In view of the information you posted, how can the NIS funds be said to be mismanaged ? How can there not be financial statements? I think posters and commenters need to distinguish between published audited statements and the absence of financial accounts, and accountability. The staff at NIS are well qualified and very competent. As usual we are too concerned with form and not substance. It would be beneficial if members of the BU household investigate the reasons why there are no published audited reports.(Unquote).
    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    There must be some ‘certified’ and’ chartered’ accountants, either past or present, on the blog who ought to take umbrage with the above assertion!!

    Of course all accountants worth their remuneration know the difference between the requirements of financial reporting for management (internal) use and that required by external users whether for shareholders/stakeholders or to satisfy some statutory timetable.

    Both sets of reports rely on the same financial database for their preparation even though the format of delivery and intended use will differ.

    But there is one ‘professional’ canon which cannot be breached; that is, the rigid application of accounting principles and reporting standards to ensure the reliability and timeliness of the information presented to users.

    The hottest of questions still remains unanswered:

    If the staff and the NIS are so “well qualified and competent”, how come they are incapable of using the same financial records stored in the accounting database to produce financial statements?

    Unless that same database has been corrupted- either through technical incompetence or contrived financial infelicities- one is left to ponder why the same financial data source cannot be used to prepare draft financial statements for the external auditors to satisfy not only the financial reporting standards of timeliness in order to present a ‘true and fair view’ of the financial health of the entity but also to satisfy the obligations clearly enunciated in the Act of Parliament.

    A law which demands the timely submission of audited financial reports to politically elected officials acting as the shareholders’ representative so that they themselves can discharge their obligations to the public with a vested interest in ensuring the NIS remains their lifeline.

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  • David
    Barbados is not alone as far as negative or near negative population growth is concerned.

    Almost all Western countries are facing this phenomenon. The only exceptions may include the USA because they are constantly importing young people to maintain adequate population growth rates.

    The NIS has almost always had some of the best leadership in the public sector in Barbados. A culture of good leadership led by Humphrey Walcott and then Tosh Gittens and others.

    Those who are seemingly afraid that the government may invite other people in to boost the population and make the easy argument of bad management will have to explain how negative population growth rates in Europe are having the same types of systemic affects we are witnessing in Barbados

    Our case is not that bad political decisions are not part of the problem. However this problem is not the fundamental issue. Was the ratio of people receiving benefits what is was the 70s and 80s or better this state of affairs would not be anywhere near as difficult.

    Liked by 1 person

  • There is a relationship between a growing middleclass and flatline population growth.

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  • There are lots of relationships. For example people are living longer as a result of medical advances. An aging population. These have implications for NIS viability.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @Vincent

    There is a good reason the audited financials are expected to be made public. No excuses!

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  • NorthernObserver

    @VC
    “It would be beneficial if members of the BU household investigate the reasons why there are no published audited reports”
    Where do you suggest one begins?

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  • Govt’s Estimates to be unveiled Tuesday – Govt’s Estimates to be unveiled Tuesday: https://barbadostoday.bb/2021/03/06/govts-estimates-to-be-unveiled-tuesday/

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  • @David March 6, 2021 1:10 PM

    Wily anticipates this report will MIRROR the Governor of Central Banks quarterly VERB-AGE, Minny Mouse at 85 is pregnant and expecting triplets. Same old same old, bullshit for the masses to baffle their highly free educated brains.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @ Wily Coyote March 6, 2021 7:47 PM

    What is clear is that we need to make massive cuts in social welfare for the native masses. Many islanders NO longer want to work AT ALL because unemployment benefits and food stamps are enough for them.

    More than half a century after the pseudo-declaration of independence, Barbados is more dependent on capital imports and tourism than ever before. Time to knock old Barrow off the monument like his brother Lord Nelson.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Vincent CodringtonMarch 6, 2021 8:48 AM @ David BU at 5 :59 AM In view of the information you posted, how can the NIS funds be said to be mismanaged ? How can there not be financial statements? I think posters and commenters need to distinguish between published audited statements and the absence of financial accounts, and accountability. The staff at NIS are well qualified and very competent.

    No one is questioning the competence of the NIS technocrats. What we do know is:

    millions have gone unpaid by those responsible for managing companies, with zero accountability. This is from multiple companies, a few high profile.
    multi millions have been invested in high risk projects, a couple that have since gone belly up. At the time of investment, it was known that they were high risk. This is not hindsight.
    a significant portion of the investment portfolio is in bonds of one country, the very country whose economy the fund depends on for its economic contributions. This lack of diversification is insanity. I have seen two comments above, on this. One, blaming lack of foreign reserves. That is nonsense. The second, that a prior government mandated the repatriation of foreign investment. That is likely part of a reason and is admission of one aspect of mismanagement. Also, that in the early 2000’s some people, including high profile actuaries, pushed a position of investment in Caribbean companies. That was misdirected and disappointing, it was also, to some extent, a conflict of interest by some.
    that there have been no published financial statements is an indictment on the management of the company. Audited financial statements available to the fund contributors and beneficiaries is critical. That speaks directly to accountability. Or should the world just throw out audited financial statements of any company and fund, in lieu of accepting that the internal reports, as entrusted to the board and management and their discretion thereof taken as acceptable?

    On all of these aspects, this is wrong.

    I do not understand the attempt to defend the indefensible. Res ipsa loquitor.

    Mismanagement does not infer incompetence on the part of the technocrats in the operation. Management decisions are by and large a responsibility of the board and management of any company. The average worker in a company has very little input into those management decisions.

    We all may have seen cases where management made decisions that were poor, even in some cases against the advice of the technocrats. However, these decisions lie squarely with those who would make them, I would never attribute blame to the technocrats (a term I use for those employees to who operate in functional roles to enable the operation) nor infer any incompetence therein.

    On a more basic level, yes, in certain companies, there may be those processes that are broken and / or staff who are incompetent. But that does not excuse the decision making of management. In fact, over a length of time, it is the place of management to fix that.

    The fact is, it has been mismanaged and there has been a lack of accountability, both to the beneficiaries of the fund and on legal issues, such as those companies that went broke, with contributions, both employee and employer, not paid into the fund. That is a clear legal issue that was left unaddressed.

    How can anyone posit that it has not been mismanaged?

    Liked by 1 person

  • We all may have seen cases where management made decisions that were poor…..

    Here I refer to companies generally, in our direct experience. I use this to clarify the notion of management responsibility, generally, not just specifically to the NIS.

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  • NorthernObserver

    @Crusoe
    You may recall a few years ago (2015) the Barbados Investment and Development Corporation, awarded insurance contracts. Who do you think made that decision? The Board of Directors of BIDC? The senior Management-CEO? It was a million dollar contract.
    Sometime later, a foreign entity, the US DOJ filed an Indictment. Section 12, reads as follows
    “……the defendant DONVILLE INNISS, using his official position as Minister of Industry, caused the BIDC to renew an insurance contract with the Barbados Company (the “2015 Contract)”
    Imagine that? It was being claimed the Minister, USED his position to CAUSE the outcome. Was this mismanagement?
    This is politely known as “interference”. The outcome was unlikely without the interjection of another party. In the BIDC case, were it not for the US DOJ, who could have known?
    You may contemplate reasons as to the lack of audited financial reports, or for that matter ANY annual reporting. I say this, because the NIS Act requires AN ANNUAL report of 3 parts, one of which is financial.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Northern….chalk it up to Short Memory Syndrome…how soon they forget, but swallowing all the fake shit Haynes is peddling, nevertheless…and have hopes and dreams of better when THEY ARE ALL CORRUPT..so that’s ALL YA WILL GET…and everyone knows it, but they continue to pretend on fantasy island.

    going around and around in circles is not my thing…until people stop living in their delusions and call this and CALL OUT all the corrupt players for WHO AND WHAT THEY REALLY ARE….yall STILL achieving NOTHING…..and NEVER WILL.

    Don’t know how may times ya have to pound it into HARD HEADS…..your Supreme Court is NONFUNCTIONAL…due to TOO MUCH CORRUPTION for TOO MANY DECADES….so NOTHING ELSE WILL WORK…on the island, no matter how much ya try to wish it into existence.

    you have a govenment that BRAZENLY INTERFERES in the court process and everything else, ya have judges who REFUSE TO DO THEIR JOBS, because they believe themselves AUTONOMOUS while SUCKING ON TAXPAYER’S MONEY AND PERKS EVERY MONTH..

    ya have lawyers like the type above…OBSTRUCTING EVERY PERSONAL INJURY CASE so they can never be completed and claimants CAN NEVER MOVE ON or receive compensation

    ….and let’s not even start on the land cases THEY ALL had/have STUCK IN THE COURTS from as far back as 1964 where TEETS claimed they removed cases, meaning they never got processed..and all the elderly and others they ENTRAPPED DIED OFF

    ……but cases from 10 years ago are NOW BACKLOGGING THE SYSTEM and the same Teets and all the other titled frauds are not lifting a finger to see that the lawyers and judges COMPLETE THE CASES, but continuing their evil game of waiting for claimants and land dispute ligtants to die off. …..let’s call the jokers at the supreme court.. the Autonomous Gang.

    and ya still think anything will function on the island….IT CAN’T…

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  • but cases from 10 years ago are NOW BACKLOGGING THE SYSTEM and the same Teets and all the other titled frauds are not lifting a finger to see that the lawyers and judges COMPLETE THE CASES, but continuing their evil game of waiting for claimants and land dispute LITIGANTS to die off. …..let’s call the jokers at the supreme court.. the Autonomous Gang.

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  • NorthernObserverMarch 7, 2021 2:53 AM

    Of course it was mismanagement, in the broad and politely termed sense. WHOMEVER was in a position to accept or deny that pressure that you describe had every right to make an alternate decision, or resign. Did they fulfill their fiduciary duty, if they allowed an outcome other than at arms length commercial?

    So yes, mismanagement. Because mismanagement encompasses all of the above, however couched, however polite the term ‘mismanagement’ may be. The effective management of the company is impacted, by decisions agreed to by the whomever was in a position to agree such.

    Liked by 1 person

  • It is nonsense to talk about people living longer (longevity) and advances in medical science being the cause of the crisis with the NIS.
    Thee advances were not an unexpected pandemic; we knew the reproductivity rate for generations and medical science advances incrementally.
    The major fault is systemic, made worse by a series of incompetents.

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  • Then there is this:

    “In 1987, Edmond de Rothschild created the World Conservation Bank to gain control of land in third world countries, which represent 30% of the land surface of the Earth. The bank assumes the debts of these countries in exchange for real estate that is conveyed to the bank.”

    How involved are the small-time, corrupt thieves and sellouts, who have robbed the elderly and their beneficiaries their land and estates for decades while driving mostly Black people to their graves and beneficiaries into poverty who became unable to recover their assets. The corrupt black faces are so nasty they would never tell the people when they get any debts paid off but more and more billions will just disappear from the treasury and pension fund without explanation. I won’t be surprised by any of it or put it pass the well known corrupt, if they involved themselves as we clearly saw Ms Fighting Imperialism running around beggining for a new world order and an invite.

    It’s gone on for way too long. I always suspected there may be much more going on. We have to wonder about small island crooks whom Black people cannot trust..

    .and let’s not even start on the land cases THEY ALL had/have STUCK IN THE COURTS from as far back as 1964 where TEETS claimed they removed those cases, meaning they never got processed..and all the elderly and others they ENTRAPPED DIED OFF.

    There is a logical explanation for everything.

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  • Make no mistake, Europe is doing what they have been doing for CENTURIES, they don’t deviate, that’s how they operate….and always will, we are familiar with them and know what to expect, but it’s your wicked, deceitful SELL OUT NEGROS that you NEVER KNOW WHAT TO EXPECT FROM THEM…with their secrecy, fraud and outright lies…

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  • I said at the beginning of this blog the fund was mismanaged and that is an undeniable fact. The blame must fall on the boards over the years and the ministers involved, as both have the right to DEMAND A DEADLINE AUDIT so why wasn’t it ever done?

    No company with revenue a fraction of the NIS is allowed by the same government to file annual tax returns unless audited, so why did they allow the fund to go unaudited for years then? Is it a case of do as I say not as I do?

    There is no excuse for what has been allowed, it is a blatant case of mismanagement by those involved in a multi billion dollar portfolio owned by us the taxpayers, that has been allowed to go on for years.

    Finally internal financials CAN NOT take the place of audited financials. Who checks the checker? If it was a store would you take the word of the cashier that this was todays sales or does something check after her to confirm? Also by LAW audited financials have to be filed by specified guidelines.

    So let we call a spade a spade and move on

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  • @ John A

    You are right about mismanagement and all the other faults you have listed. What you refuse to accept is that no matter how efficient the management, no matter if the financial were on time, the reality is that the NIS still will not work. It is a systemic problem, not a management problem. We need a new system.
    Barbados is a very conservative society, it is hugely risk-averse, and this drips in to policy-making. Because of politicians and policy-makers do not understand how modern pensions work, and because they do not want to call in consultants that they do not know personally, they therefore turn their backs on change. They see change as an enemy, rather than a saviour.
    To accept that the NIS dysfunction is cultural is to bring out the anger in Barbadians. But it is similar to being an alcoholic; until you accept you have a drink problem then you cannot be cured.
    You are looking the wrong place fora the answers.

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  • OK ugly man from England.

    Then, inform the blog from your vast resources of nothingness why this phenomenon “uniquely” Bajan only in your mind has replicated itself in nearly all socalled Western industrial countries.

    The real truth is that you only want to use this issue as artificial pressure point against the government while lacking any integrity to truth.

    Liked by 1 person

  • @ Hal

    I agree with you the fund in its current form needs to be overhauled. What I am saying is that as of today this is the one we have, so until such time as it is replaced it needs to be properly managed. Right now that is not the case as we don’t even know the true market Value and ROI on the assets of the fund.

    Yes it needs restructuring but for now this is the only horse in the stable so we have to work with it.

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  • @ Hal

    For years this fund has served us well, but in the last say 15 years from the time it became the piggy Bank for government failure that all changed. The sinkhuh printorama followed by the debt restructuring delivered the poison and covid dug the grave for it.

    Any mismanaged entity can hobble along in good times but in lean times there is no room for mismanagement.

    Liked by 1 person

  • What are the mechanics to managing a pension vs a social security scheme?

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  • @ John A

    Having accepted that the system is dysfunctional, and that mismanagement makes it even more grossly incompetent, then the solution is simple.
    The director is in charge of the scheme, and all other staff report directly or indirectly to her/him. Presumably, staff get annual performance reports. What kind of performance reports do those responsible for the management accounts get? Some former directors have been promoted. What does t hat tell you?
    If negative, are they then put on probation, sent for training or even sacked? If positive, are these reports reviewed by senior management?
    The scheme reports to parliament, is parliament happy with the unaudited accounts, going back several years? Sometimes when the triennial actuarial reports are presented they are already late for the following period.
    This incompetence is tolerated by parliament; who are themselves elected by the people. We talk and then move on. The politicians know this.
    Do you remember the St George North bye-election results?

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  • Well, well, well. One learns something new everyday. It is remarkable how the African diaspora has such a shared history.

    There are many examples of black communities whom have created dynamic and self sufficient communities only to have them systematically destroyed by a greater power. In the words of Al Pacino from theGodfather 3:
    “Just when I thought I was out, they pulled me back in”

    I have just read how the fiercely independent Rasta community in St John accused the government of allowing dumping to take place adjacent to some agricultural land that they the rastas are cultivating. Someone needs to tell the rastas that there is a good reason for this. They, the rastas, must stand firm.

    The looting of the NIS savings into the pockets of a privilege few is a clear indication that the majority population is their to be fully exploited and permanently weakened.

    I also noted with interest that an Indo-Carib called Dr. Felicia Persaud called for the Caribbean to create a diaspora bond to regenerate the Caribbean economy. This policy is already in place amongst the Indo community throughout the region. If they are asking for members of the African diaspora to contribute to this bond – well, we know how that’s going to end up!

    The link below is truly remarkable. If you want to see where Barbados black majority population is heading to then click the link below.

    https://www.thecanadianencyclopedia.ca/en/article/africville

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  • @ John A
    Do you really mean that for years the system served us well, or that for years the flaws did not show?

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  • @TLSN

    The idea of a diaspora bond for Barbados is not new. It has been suggested already on BU; and the Israelis and Cypriots have similar.
    We celebrate the regurgitation and/or plagiarising of old ideas. Polish them and pretend they are new.

    Liked by 1 person

  • So with the savings from the NIS looted. How will the country manage? You guessed it. Sell of all your assets to your numerous lenders.

    Anyone ever heard of the great pan Africanist revolutionist – Kenneth Kuanada? He was voted out of power in 1991. Zambia was once an important African country. Its mismanagement has turned it into a satellite state of China. It is so indebted to China that it is to all intent and purpose no longer a sovereign country.

    Too bad!

    Liked by 1 person

  • @ Hal,
    The diaspora bond would be an excellent idea. However we all know how it would be used.

    Members of the diaspora should be wary of purchasing land, property or setting up a bank account in Barbados. The risks are too high.

    On another note, I see that the British government has denied the return of a Windrush citizen as he had spent too long outside of the country. The irony was that they would not allow him to return. The court overturned this injustice. However there appears to be a time limit statue in place. The man is in his mid-fifties and arrived as a nine year old in the UK.

    Hal, the British establishment are demonic towards the Caribbean community. They simply detest us.

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  • @ TLSN

    I have always said that Caribbean people have been treated worst than any other ethnic group in the UK. They do it because they can get away with it and our governments do not say a dickie bird. Our leaders prefer to be world class.

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  • Good post TLSN.

    Was worth a Sunday read.

    To whom it may concern: Mr Williams does not try to impress.

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  • @ Hal

    If we look back at the NIS further that 14 or 20 years you will see that the fund grew its assets and based on financials even produced a surplus yearly. So to say it was dysfunctional then would not be a fair statement. The fund began to be a problem when politicians from both sides saw it as a slush fund for poor adherence to their own estimates and expenses. So the fact that they were unable to stick to their own budgets and had constant shortfalls, many of those were met by interfering with the fund.

    The final blow came when sinkyuh fired up the printer and then Mia body slammed the fund with the debt restructuring, thereby taking $120M out its annual cash flow without any provision for the funds refinancing. Then covid came along and the rest is history.

    Liked by 1 person

  • “The looting of the NIS savings into the pockets of a privilege few is a clear indication that the majority population is their to be fully exploited and permanently weakened.”

    that’s the plan…that’s what the black face sellouts beg the population for votes to do, to keep Black/African people “permanently” mentally and financially “weakend.”

    no great surprise…as soon as they are elected to the parliament, their whole small time fraudulent persona takes on a higher level of fraudulence….

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  • Also we need to accept the fact that regardless of how the fund is structured, if half your assets in worthless paper and the other half in overstated under performing real estate, not even Houdini could of make it work.

    The blame has to fall on the boards of the last 20 years and the governments of the last 20 years along with the opposition parties of the last 20 years too. This is no time to come here and try to protect no party past or present neither.

    Liked by 1 person

  • “Members of the diaspora should be wary of purchasing land, property or setting up a bank account in Barbados. The risks are too high.”

    same thing i told a relative of mine only yesterday, there are ways to do it though from offshore and if they mess with ya land/property or bank accounts AFTER you set up an offhsore holding company……DRAG THEM THROUGH THE INTERNATIONAL ARENA for the whole world to see….make sure everyone knows their names so they can no longer operate from anywhere…drive their asses into obscurity and poverty just as they delight in doing to the Black/African population…make them persona non grata on the four corners of the earth.

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  • “If they are asking for members of the African diaspora to contribute to this bond – well, we know how that’s going to end up!”

    Black people need to STAY THE HELL AWAY from the descendants of indentured servants…the Caribbean does not belong to any of them, it belongs to the NATIVE FIRST PEOPLE OF THE AMERICAS…who can be found on most Caribbean islands still….and who have no voice…YET..

    when ya see sellout nigas and indians running around pretending they own the islands, they don’t own shit..

    Black/African people in the Caribbean have AFRICA…it’s your homeland/Motherland, and if they don’t want it and prefer join with thieves and racists who HATES THEM…..that’s their problem, more for the descendants who actually have a FUNCTIONING BRAIN…to get and pass on to their children and future generations….what they hell more would they want….

    i won’t go near Caribbean racists and thieves of the indian or local “white” or other persuasion….only foolish Black people will get reeled in and don’t know the plot.

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  • @ John A

    Are we just talking about the investment performance of the fund, or its contributory growth? If we are talking about the return on investment, then we have to look at what we got (Oppenheimer said it was about six per cent, if I remember correctly) at a time when returns were generally much higher on the main indexes.
    What is the investment mandate for the fund? What is the asst allocation policy of the fund? What is the stock picking and how do we go about it? Is the Oppenheimer mandate a passive or active one?
    I was in the audience a few years ago when a representative from Oppenheimer told an audience at the Frank Collymore hall more about his father-in-law’s love of ice cream than of the fund’s performance.
    It is the principle of buoyancy, when the water is in, it floats all the boats and people go partying, it is when it goes out that we find the flotsam and jetsam.
    It is the same thing for zombie companies. In a boom, all companies appear to do well, it is when the tough times come that we realise which companies are zombie ones.
    We need a new state pension system, and it is not this one.

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  • Where is the latest actuarial report?

    Where are the up to date audited financial statements?

    TBC

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  • @ Hal

    Another of the questions you are asking are very valid one but in the absence of audited financials and a complete asset valuation at todays market price your guess is as good as mine my friend.

    I would say roughly based on what we know its real asset Value based on market value is probably around $2B. I say that based on its worthless paper and its overstated and under performing real estate holdings.

    If anyone says differently then please share the assessed asset valuations by independent authorised sources outside the NIS in the press for us please.

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  • @ John A

    All the questions you raise are the right ones, but they are minor. It is like a company that is trading at a loss worrying about travel expenses for the cleaner.
    There are bigger problems. Stop spending your invaluable time on petty issues. Most people, and I hope you are an exception, worry about these things because they cannot understand the bigger picture.
    I know pensions is foreign territory to most Bajan policy-makers, but we should call in proper consultants and sort out this fractured system we have.

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  • The NIS is in serious financial trouble
    The seriousness of it all now lies at the hands of govt to find a solution
    Questions like how and when are relevant to the survival of the fund

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  • @ John A

    I’m in agreement with your mate’s opinions on the NIS.

    As he correctly mentioned, “no matter how efficient the management, no matter if the financials were on time, the reality is that the NIS still will not work. It is a systemic problem, not a management problem. We need a new system.”

    If the ‘government’ and NIS adhere to his advice, then, we wouldn’t have a situation similar to what is occurring at the BRA, relative to the previous administration establishing the Barbados Revenue Authority (BRA) as the main tax collection agency and introduced a new integrated, online tax system, TAMIS for the efficiently reporting, collection and overall administration of taxes.

    Yet, unfortunately, the underlying problems that were prevalent when the BRA was known as Inland Revenue Department, remain to this day.

    Liked by 1 person

  • Fake, FRAUD leaders…what did yall expect to get.

    Like

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