Submitted by Observing
In the silly season we tend to look only at politics, but it is also Covid season. A look therefore at the recent election call through the eyes of a pandemic situation is necessary
The charts above show statistics for Covid Cases and Positivity Rates in December. Remember we came from highs of 400 and rates of 20+% in October and November
Since then we have learned about Omicron which was first recorded in November, spread around the world by December 1 and reached the Caribbean a week or so later
What did Barbados do?
We relaxed the policy at the airport without consulting BAMP, botched the rollout of Safe Zones without consulting the Unions, started home isolation and stopped contact tracing without initially letting the public know.
Now on December 27, 2021 snap elections are called. 18 months early. Let that sink in.
The government holds ALL medical information, projections and forecasts. He/she is aware of all potential national security and health issues. They more than anyone, know what the attached charts and regional situation is showing. Yet, despite this, there was a mad unilateral rush to Republic and now another mad unilateral rush to an election 18 months early.
But, just for comparison, let’s look at a few other recent elections regionally
- St. Lucia, held July 26, 2021. 7 day Covid average at announcement = 7
- St. Vincent, held November 20, 2020: 7 day Covid average at announcement = 0.86
- Jamaica, held September 3, 2020: 7 day Covid average at announcement = 18
- Trinidad, held August 10, 2020: 7 day Covid average at announcement = 1
- St. Kitts, held June 5, 2020: 7 day Covid average at announcement = 13
- Barbados to be held January 19, 2020: 7 day Covid average at announcement = 72…and climbing
I think we get the picture.
In the above cases, constitutional constraints mean elections HAD to be called soon. In Barbados’ case, no such demand existed other than political or individual calculation. A Prime Minister asked once when will leaders lead. Leaders do not plunge their people into a state of uncertainty, in a pandemic, in the season of Advent, before the start of school with not even their own people being aware just because “they felt like.”
- Leaders bring people together of all stripes and loyalties to heal divisions real, perceived or created by themselves.
- Leaders go beyond just talk and live up to the ideals and values that THEY said they would.
- Leaders take care of home drums first then worry about attention abroad after.
- Leaders build trust through transparency and honesty.
- Leaders focus on all persons, not just a select few.
I think we all know that this election was not called based on national goals or unity. The general public and the electorate are clearly secondary considerations.
Keep safe whenever you campaign or wherever you vote. Long live the Republic.