Little Island Big Cabinet
The Barbados government recently launched the Little Island Big Barbados campaign and immediately those responsible are having to defend against a torrent of criticism from the public. The thrust of the concern: the campaign is a tired concept several islands have used to promote tourism for which Barbados is whispered to have forked out $700,000.00.
In the blog BLP and DLP Cancer of Adversarial Politics the blogmaster raised concerns that are applicable in this case.
Yesterday the Reverend Guy Hewitt (also see: Is Guy Hewitt the Way, Truth and Light for the DLP?) was featured in the news in clarion voice calling for the resignation of Minister of Tourism Lisa Cummins. The good Reverend as spokesman for the DLP- our government in waiting- has the right to call for the resignation of Cummins. If we want to promote a culture of high performance built on meritocracy, when mistakes are made or persons perform poorly, there should be consequences. Although the facts of the matter have not been disclosed to the public – pending an internal investigation by Chairman of the BTMI Roseanne Myers – there is enough smoke to the story to suggest public concerns are valid given the large sum allegedly disbursed for the campaign.
A takeaway from the imbroglio for the blogmaster is the use of the resignation tactic by politicians on both sides of the aisle. It was not too long ago the incumbent Attorney General (AG) Dale Marshall called for the resignation of then AG Adriel Brathwaite. There were calls for the resignation of Michael Carrington to resign as Speaker of the House Assembly the revelation he had to pass around a hat to collect donations to make good on a client’s monies owed. The blogmaster joined strident calls for Denis Lowe to resign after the Cahill Expose. Fast forward to the present there have been calls for Dale Marshall over concerns about crime, before that it was Wilfred Abrahams and the sordid practice by GIS staffers to emotionally and physically abuse detainees at the GIS, whomever is responsible for the fiasco at Barbados Revenue Authority re car registrations and the latest Lisa Cummins to step down or be fired. They all survived the job. No doubt when the dust is settled so too will Lisa Cummins, one of those Mottley has pencilled in on her succession plan.
A critical examination of the way recent governments have operated in Barbados is that firing has not been a go to option. The calls from political talking heads for opposite members to resign is all about generating froth to feed a perception of relevance in the eyes of a disengaged and unsophisticated electorate. One has to go back to Arthur’s obvious firing of George Payne and Elizabeth Thompson to find good examples of ministerial sackings. Some may offer that a reshuffle is a form of demotion given the pecking order of some ministries, it is not a firing.
In the climate of adversarial politics the DLP is doing what the system allows for a political party to seek traction and visibility in the eyes of the public. Especially two years out from a general election.