Politicians Make Promises and Tell Lies

From time to time the blogmaster retrieves the various manifestos shared over the years by the two main political parties in Barbados and it makes for interesting reflection. It is obvious the objective by the BLP and DLP is to baffle a gullible electorate. Have a read if you are a doubting Thomas – http://www.caribbeanelections.com/eDocs/manifestos/bb/blp_manifesto_2018.pdf

The blogmaster was drawn page 30 of the BLP manifesto titled Rebuilding the Economy, Financing National transformation. Notwithstanding the country had to battle the Covid 19 pandemic for the last 3 years there is a view that with an unprecedented large Cabinet the government should have made more progress implementing several of the promises made in the 2018 manifesto. 

Last week the government received a donation of personal equipment supplies and Minister of Health (former chairman of the controversial NIS) took the opportunity to remind Barbadians so far, fighting the pandemic has costed government about 100 million dollars. The ministry of health should be congratulated for being transparent and efficient to share the cost with the public. We will wait to have the number validated by the Auditor General.

While congratulating the Minister of Health for being able to share the cost to fight the pandemic so far – why should we be congratulating for this anyway – the public has seen roadblocks to ascertain the cost of the Barbados Digital ID Project. It is ironic that Minister of Industry, Innovation, Science and Technology Davidson Ishmael has been unable to share projected and or actual cost given the type of ministry he is responsible. It is too much of a big pill for the public to swallow he has no idea the cost of the project. He was quoted in the press as saying – “I am going to provide the public with the costs related to this project very soon. The thing is, we have the information relative to the cost [but] that information is spread across many financial years, many different components, many different agencies, departments and ministries”. 

The blogmaster understands the ID project has had several iterations across financial years straddling BOTH administrations. Is Minister Ishmael saying that at minimum he is unable to share cost incurred under his BLP government with the caveat information will come at a later date regarding prior years expense? It is the height of arrogance by the minister and flies in the face of this government’s pledge to be transparent. Is this another case of public servants messing up the bookkeeping by being complicit with politicians in the award of contracts to private sector players?

In today’s Nation the editor in chief Carol Martindale calls out government ministers for not returning calls to journalists pursuing information in the public’s interest. Again a read of the 2018 BLP Manifesto promised a government committed to being transparent. In reality, it is about making promises to win votes from a gullible public, or shall we say damn lies. Is the proclamation of Integrity and Freedom of Information legislation still a promise?

We have a Ministry of Health quick to toss around a 100 million dollar price tag for propaganda purposes, BUT, in a another ministry there is a veil of confusion about how tax payers dollars have been allocated to the Barbados ID project. Why do we have annual Estimates debates and Appropriations Bills? Surely Minister Ismael can tell the public he serves monies allocated to the project under his term? Is this a case for the Auditor General to unravel in a special audit? This maybe the case based on what the blogmaster was been made aware. If only public servants would do the damn job and stop politicians from interfering ways.

86 thoughts on “Politicians Make Promises and Tell Lies

  1. It’s time to stop shunning media
    I’M BACK!

    As the saying goes, it’s been a minute since I have been in this space, but it feels good to be here.
    So much has been going on, especially in the last couple of weeks when I took a much-needed vacation.
    Some hot button topics like crime, the National Insurance Scheme (NIS), cost of living, gas prices and electricity costs have been dominating headlines and engaging the minds and lips of the public.
    I read with interest comments made by the public on our social media platforms that not enough was being done by the media to dig deeper into some of the issues.
    Serious task
    People are well within their rights to call us out if they are not getting what they believe they deserve from us as media. Ours is a serious task to hold officials accountable and demand the necessary information that would help the public understand the issues better and make more informed decisions.
    I wasn’t present for a recent meeting Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley had with media bosses to discuss the NIS issue, but I was told that as part of the discussion, she implored them to call her ministers on various topics and ask the necessary questions. I thought this was interesting, as I have heard it before.
    Still, there are some who seem to have resolved that they will try their very best to avoid and not return calls from journalists.
    That said, when an error is made or something is written that a Government official has reason to question, they make contact.
    I have made this call already and I will make it again. Ministers and officials need to make themselves more accessible to the media. I am also tired of hearing the same rhetoric: “You all are too sensational”.
    Why, because we are asking questions and trying to get answers for the public, who officials also serve.
    Understand role
    Instead of sometimes publicly berating journalists for doing their job, perhaps it would serve the country and the public better if officials understood
    the role media practitioners play in society.
    Do not use the media just to get your message out when it serves a purpose, but understand that journalists will also pursue information that, yes, sometimes makes you feel uncomfortable, but all this is done in the interest of the public.
    It is not about being sensational, but about understanding an issue and being able to communicate information to the public who is demanding more answers.
    Let me hasten to say that not all ministers of Government or public officials operate in this way, but those who do, need to change their modus operandi.
    I want to turn quickly to the NIS issue. I thought the NIS officials, including Derek Osborne, the actuary, did a good job communicating where we are as far as the Scheme is concerned and what needs to be done to safeguard its future.
    I must confess that before I listened to the presentation, I was of the view that when I retire in about 11 years there will be no money for me. I am not alone as I have heard this view expressed by others.
    Listened carefully
    I listened to most of Osborne’s detailed and clear presentation, complete with slides. Then I also read what principal and consulting actuary with Eckler Ltd, Lisa Wade, wrote in the last SUNDAY SUN.
    “The 17th Actuarial Review of the National Insurance Scheme has revealed that the National Insurance Fund, which is responsible for the provision of old age contributory pensions, will be fully depleted between 2034 and 2041.
    “This does not mean that the payment of these pensions will cease at that time, a fear expressed in some quarters, but it will mean that the benefit payments will exceed contribution and investment income, and it will not be possible for the Fund to meet its obligations to pensioners in a timely manner, as there will be no reserves from which the NIS can draw upon. The Government and the NIS have signalled their intention to reform NIS to put it on a path to financial sustainability,” Wade wrote.
    It is for this reason that efforts are on to find viable solutions to safeguard and protect the NIS.
    The truth is that better and more frequent updating of information on the
    fund must be accessible to the public. I also think, as suggested by panellists who were part of Brass Tacks Sunday, that more emphasis must be placed on financial literacy, starting from early in the schools. In fact, I believe it was suggested that it be put on the school curriculum. I couldn’t agree more.
    It is when issues such as the NIS and its viability, Government bonds, investment and all things financial come up, that we recognise how critical it is we all understand them.
    As options are put on the table to boost the fund for future generations and pensioners, the one I have some difficulty with is that of working to 72 years.
    While I do realise that people are living longer, and as someone said to me recently, “50 is the new 40”, working to 72 does not seem like an attractive option for those of us who will want to ride off into the sunset and enjoy our remaining years on this earth doing whatever we please.
    Instead, why not also put pressure on those employers who collect NIS from workers and refuse to pay it into the Scheme? It is highway robbery and needs to be addressed because it is affecting all of us.

    by Editor-in-Chief
    Carol Martindale
    carolmartindale@nationnews.com @carol_nationbb

    Source: Nation

  2. Who to blame, politicians or public servants for the delay.

    Teachers in limbo
    Suspended two query lengthy delay in disciplinary matter

    FIVE MONTHS AFTER being brought up on disciplinary charges over his decision to contest the January 19 General Election, suspended teacher Pedro Shepherd says he is in a state of limbo with his matter yet to be heard.
    Shepherd, along with fellow teacher Alwyn Babb, was charged with breaching the Public Service Act back in April. Both men contested the poll on a Democratic Labour Party (DLP) ticket, a factor which has prompted cries of victimisation by some in the political sphere.
    Shepherd told the MIDWEEK NATION that with the new academic year beginning on September 12 and his interdiction set to end October 6, he is concerned that the wheels of justice are moving way too slowly.
    Meanwhile, head of Unity Workers’ Union, Caswell Franklyn, who is representing Babb, said his matter was concluded since May, but there has been no word since on the conclusion of the disciplinary committee.
    “I have maintained that the committee cannot legally hear this matter. Babb’s defence raises a constitutional issue so the panel has to refer the matter to the court,” Franklyn said.
    Don’t have authority
    “I don’t know if that is what they are waiting for because that is the only thing I can think of that could be keeping back this matter. They don’t have the authority to rule on a constitutional matter,” he added.
    Shepherd, who contested the St Michael South East seat, said his life was at a virtual standstill, receiving only half his pay and being unable to travel.
    “I was supposed to have a hearing a few months ago but one of the committee members was unable to make it and I am yet to receive a rescheduled date. According to the regulations, hearings were supposed to begin seven days after the charges were laid, but now we are looking at months beyond the stipulated period. I will wait for the six-month period for a determination on whether I would be resuming duties, whether I would be put on no-pay leave; I am just waiting. We should definitely have heard something by now and it does not seem like they are in any hurry to deal with this particular case,” he lamented.
    General secretary of the Barbados Union of Teachers, Herbert Gittens, said clarity was needed on the next step when the suspension ends.
    “I am really hoping that the matter could be addressed as soon as possible so that the individuals could have some resolution and get back to doing what they do best, which is teaching. I would love to see the two teachers get justice because there are obviously some benefits that they are missing, given the matter. They are currently suspended with half pay, they can’t
    report for duty, they can’t travel, so the longer this matter takes, the more inconvenienced they are going to be. Something would have to be done once the suspension ends because once that period is over, then the status quo should return,” he said.
    Several attempts to reach Chief Education Officer Dr Ramona Archer-Bradshaw for comment were unsuccessful. Several calls were also made to the Ministry of the Civil Service to have some light shed on the concerns of Shepherd, but to no avail.
    Babb and Shepherd face four charges of breaching Paragraph 15(1) of the Code of Conduct and Ethics, categorised as misconduct of a serious nature in Paragraph 2 of the Code of Discipline in the Public Service. They are also accused of breaching the Public Service Act, Cap 29.
    In correspondence sent to the two, dated April 4, 2022, the first charge stated that they “committed misconduct of a serious nature between the 3rd day of January 2022 and the 19th day of January 2022, when you as a public officer participated in the 2022 General Election as the Democratic Labour Party candidate . . . contrary to General Order 3.18.1 of the General Orders for the Public Service 1970”. It was also deemed “a contravention of Paragraph 2(h) of the Code of Discipline set out in the schedule of the Public Service Act Cap 29”.

    Source: Nation

  3. Ms Martindale need fear not that the NIS fund will be depleted before she reaches that magical age of collection as she may not make it pass the tape , and here is why. W

    The government of Barbados, after intense collaboration with the ministry of health, has devised a three point action plan that provides the National Insurance Service with a solution to alleviate its challenge with the future viability of the Fund.

    They are:

    Covid protocols at all ports of entry will no longer be necessary.
    The wearing of masks will no longer be required.
    The “Three feet” social distancing is now deemed necessary.
    The challenge the NIS faces is that projections indicate the numbers entering the workforce will be unable to guarantee sustainability of the Fund into the future due to a low birth rate. Compounding this is the fact that older people are now living longer. This has resulted in a drain on the fund as some are collecting more than they subscribed.

    The above adjustments to the protocols should prove beneficial to the Fund as statistics point to the fact that older people are more susceptible to demise by Covid than younger Barbadians.

  4. Not only DLP and BLP politicians think people are gullible.
    “ If only public servants would do the damn job and stop politicians from interfering ways.”( @ David).
    The minister refuses to inform the public as to the cost of the new ID cards as he promised.
    The public servants are complicit and must now stop politicians from “interfering ways”
    Only the gullible would believe such nonsense.
    It will go like this on VOB Brasstacks.
    Hello David ( Ellis) can you hear me ?
    Ellis: Yes I can hear you
    Civil Servant: I am calling from the ministry responsible for the ID cards. I just call to let you know the cost of the cards is $xxxxxxxx. I know the minister had promised to tell the public but since he ain’t do it, I decided to call and let you know.
    Ellis : Now that I have you on the line, can you tell the public why Bajans are so gullible.
    Civil Servant: I really can’t answer that
    Ellis : Well thanks for calling
    Civil Servant: No problem David
    Ellis: There you have it , the new ID cards cost $xxxxxxxx. Next caller……


    • @William

      Your blinkers will NEVER permit you to understand the PS approves money spend in his unit.

      Is the Chief Electoral Officer a politician? Why did the Chief Electoral Officer under the former administration skim money from other budget heads to support a national id project that has since not proven fit for purpose and had to be dump? Who are the principals behind the private sector company contracted then and how much of tax dollars were they paid by the Chief Electoral Department.

      Keep wearing your blinkers, luckily some of us don’t have used for them.

  5. David,

    Whose job is it to communicate these things to the public? Is it the job of the civil servant?

    I do not understand that statement. If you want courageous whistleblowers that is different from wanted civil servants to do their job.

    I am confused.

    • Don’t be confused, it is the public servant’s job to do their damn jobs and tell the politicians stay in their lanes. The problem is that the line between public sector and the executive has become blurred because of a lack of professionalism in the service.

    • From everywhere Donna.

      Some of you believe a critique of the public service means they aren’t hardworking public servants. The two shouldn’t be conflated.

  6. Hopefully, the public gets more than a number tossed into the wind. The number of IDs issued and the average cost would help clear the air.

    The minister would also earn big points, if he was able to show that the costs were similar to those incurred by others in the ‘same’ situation.

  7. Who votes the estimates? The estimates are prepared by the Civil Service but must meet the approval of the political directorate. They must be in keeping with the policies and priorities of the ELECTED MEMBERS OF GOVERNMENT.

    The Civil Service facilitates or carries out the policies of the political directorate.

    There should be a line between creating policy and the daily processes and yes, especially in the case of chairpersons and boards of SOEs, the lines have been blurred but I am not sure how this relates to your point about who should be communicating with the public the cost of the ID programme.

    Still confused!

  8. Re. Ms Martindale’s statement : “Let me hasten to say that not all ministers of Government or public officials operate in this way, but those who do, need to change their modus operandi.”

    From her comments, it appears some in the Media are trying to get questions answered but Ministers are not revealing any information unless its a photo-op show for the public!

    If a journalist request information from a Minister and not receive a reply or answer, PUBLISH details of of the effort….eg:

    “On Monday, dd/mm/yy, I requested information on the XYZ matter from Minister John Doe. To date the Minister has not acknowledged or replied to my requests!!!”.

    The public will now know that, the journalist, is performing his/her job but not the Minister. Transparency on both sides is required!!!

    • @ks

      The media house will be reluctant to call out ministers because in the scheme of things the government is a big ad/placement spender with media houses.

  9. Hi David et al,

    For those interested, I pulled all of the Manifestos I could find from the Caribbean Elections website and have uploaded them to opendatabarbados.org.

    Persons can also find the Estimates, Annual Reports from the Auditor General (and other agencies), and more (e.g., basket of goods prices from 2020 from the DCCA). This new project seeks to build a mini open data portal of various GoB and non-GoB (fuel price sheet from my own collection spanning 2015 to 2022), information on Barbados.

    Kind regards,
    Amit Uttamchandani

    • @Amit


      Unfortunately too many are not taking the time to informed their views about the workings of government and related matters. It took the prime minister to call the people to arms on the NIS matter, the same class of people mainly responsible for its mismanagement.

      Since the 2013 NIS Actuarial Review it was gleaned by many this day would come.

  10. “Some of you” does not include me. Every organisation and every person will have something about them that can be credibly criticised. The Civil Service is no different.

    I am asking specifically about your point wrt communicating with the public the cost of the ID programme. Are Permanent Secretaries responsible for communicating with the public?

    You are not going to deter me with the “some of you” bullshit. You are not going to deter me with the “emotional” label.

    Once I believe something, I always argue passionately but I never let emotion get in the way of logic. Why? Because it makes no sense if one really wants to get to the truth of any situation.

    And I have no agenda other than the truth. SO… if someone can present convincing alternatives, I am always willing to consider and adjust as necessary.

    So…. I await your logical presentation!

  11. “ I wasn’t present for a a recent meeting Prime Minister Mia Amor Mottley had with media bosses to discuss the NIS issue , but I was told that as part of the discussion, she implored them to call her ministers on various topics and ask the necessary questions. I thought this was interesting because , as I have heard it before.”
    Carol Martindale( Nation newspaper 8/30/22.
    The Prime Minister did not tell them to call the Civil Servants.
    Brasstacks :
    Hello , Walter ( Blackman) can you hear me ?
    Caller: Walter , I am a civil servant. I just call to tell the public they can call me when they have questions because the ministers are not returning calls from the press. And I just doing it because they ain’t listening to the Prime Minister, who tell the press to call them on topics.
    Walter:So, you are saying that instead of the press calling the ministers , they should call you
    Civil Servant: Yes
    Walter : Well thank you and you can give your number to the producer.
    Civil Servant : ok
    Walter: There you have it members of the press, you can get that number from the producer and call that civil servant
    Walter: We have another caller on the line……….

    • @ks

      As they say, it is not a perfect world. There is a balance we will have to always fight to protect the interest of the 90%.

  12. Mindfulness #shorts
    Politicians put in most of their effort in being elected and reelected during campaign periods.

    The “promises” are plans and not daily reality when they go out into the world and encounter real life situations interact with other people and things go wrong against the plan initially had, how do they react then to all of this, what space are they reacting, is their practice so integrated into their life that they can respond from a place of awareness, peace, love and unconditional kindness or are they just reacting to it and all of a sudden they forgot what their whole practice did to become elected.

    Therefore it may better to monitor what they do daily.
    There was a much talk about Senate formation at start of the year, but they have gone quiet and seem to be lounging.

    • Agree with much of this comment Kiki. And it is a universal approach. We must keep up the people advocacy to ensure our concerns are always on the radar.

  13. Expanding: Not only is the government a big spender but some politicians wield power like a club and use it against those who they see as opposition.

    The comments on Minister/Civil Servants/PS are interesting. However, they should be reality based. Rules and processes may be there but we know who is the King. Subjects not known for courage obey and follow their king.

    • The political directorate is long because the public service has not been robustly defending its territory. This is the reality, allowing a faulty culture to subsume what should be. People in roles must manage.

  14. I’m not sure what journalists and other people are concerned about, whenever there is anything of consequence on the horizon or on their doorstep the PM calls a Press Conference and lets them know how the Gov’t is going to handle it; this has been how it has worked over the past four years; they should be acclimatised to it by now.

  15. “Whose job is it to communicate these things to the public? Is it the job of the civil servant?”

    under their contract….civil servants can be FIRED for communicating anything to the public NOT APPROVED by the fools in the parliament…so if they tell them to LIE….that is what the public will get, if they want to keep their jobs…

    there is a secrets act in the civil service..

    all the blame for the LIES, sleight of hand, misinformation….and outright misdirection comes from the parliament…don’t let anyone tell you otherwise…

  16. “but some politicians wield power like a club and use it against those who they see as opposition.”

    imagine what they do to those who FALL UNDER their direct control and under the TREASON ACT…

  17. “he media house will be reluctant to call out ministers because in the scheme of things the government is a big ad/placement spender with media houses.”


  18. I read this piece again and I am.even more confused?

    Its title refers to politicians’ lying ways. It speaks to manifesto promises not kept. It speaks to lack of transparency by ministers. Then it ends with frustrations directed at civil servants for not stopping politicians from doing interfering.

    What is the point of this piece?.

    • And that is fine Donna. The blogmaster’s target audience will get the meaning being conveyed in this blog.

  19. David,

    Who is the target audience? The top civil servants?

    So you are telling the top civil servants to push back and defend their territory.

    Fair enough. You could have put it better.

    • Barbadians are invited to submit nominations for the 2022 National Independence Honours, to the National Honours and Decorations Advisory Council. 

      Nominees should be outstanding in sport, science, the arts, culture and civic or other areas, or have provided meritorious service in the military or protective services.

      Section 9(2) of the Barbados National Honours and Decorations Act 2021 states that “a person other than a citizen of Barbados is eligible to be appointed as an honorary member of the Order”.

      The categories and criteria available this year are as follows:
      ORDER OF FREEDOM OF BARBADOS – awarded for distinguished and extraordinary service to Barbados, the Caribbean, the Caribbean Diaspora or to humanity at large.

      ORDER OF THE REPUBLIC – awarded for distinguished national achievement and merit.

      GOLD AWARD OF ACHIEVEMENT – awarded for meritorious service of achievement in Barbados or a community within Barbados.

      THE TRIDENT OF EXCELLENCE – awarded in two grades (Gold & Silver) for highly meritorious service or achievement in science, the arts, literature, sport, civic duties or any other endeavour worthy of national recognition.

      THE BARBADOS SERVICE AWARDS – awarded in two grades (Service Star and Service Medal) for meritorious work in the public, fire, military, police, prison or other protective services or in any other similar field of endeavour.

      THE BARBADOS BRAVERY MEDAL – for acts of bravery in hazardous circumstances.

      THE BARBADOS STAR OF GALLANTRY – for acts of conspicuous courage in circumstances of extreme peril.

      THE PRIDE OF BARBADOS – awarded for humanitarian, social, religious or educational contribution to the development of each parish in Barbados.

      BARBADOS HUMANITARIAN SERVICE AWARD – awarded for meritorious humanitarian service to Barbados

      Nominations will be made via the link https://lnkd.in/e9twQ4_C and will close on October 7, 2022.

      Further information may be obtained by telephoning 535-5385, 535-5499 or 535-5406, during office hours.

  20. @David, I posted some weeks back on this related topic when we also spoke of the professionalism (or lack thereof at times) in the civil service as it related to effectiveness on projects. Then I gave broad agreement with your position vis the political directorate … however, good sir, in your posts above you have gone way past that sentiment and gone off the edge with your assertion in the CONTEXT of transparency and public disclosure of ministry details that “the public service has not been robustly defending its territory.”

    Come on @Mr Blogmaster you KNOW that a civil servant CANNOT disclose ANYTHING seen or heard in their ministry without direct approval from their political masters and even then they better get that as a written directive to cover their ‘rear end’!

    You are mixing apples and eddoes : So I revert to the prior discussion and note that I cannot agree with your context of professionalism when you say: ****”The problem is that the line between public sector and the executive has become blurred because of a lack of professionalism in the service.”***

    It is reasonable to say that the Gov. of the Central Bank or a PS or Chief Medical Officer and such subject matter experts can “…do their damn jobs and tell the politicians stay in their lanes” when it comes to details of the mater at hand but that can NEVER apply to a situation where such a professional issues public data in contravention of said political master ….which is what you are SUGGESTING above.

    Yes “People in roles must manage” but those are automatic grounds for termination – with little recourse for legal satisfaction. You are over the edge here!

  21. @DavidAugust 31, 2022 11:16 AM

    I could not have named the medals better.

    The only thing missing is a new title for the president!

    How about:

    Her Excellency, President for Life, Field Marshal Doctor, VC, DSO, MC, CBE, Lord of All the Beasts of the Earth and Fishes of the Seas and Conqueror of the British Empire in the Caribbean in General and Barbados in Particular, Queen of Scotland.

    At least the new badges will ease the pain of our natives that, unlike the businessmen, they have only accumulated debts since 1966.

  22. @David 11.04
    You gine get lock up….pointing out political hypocrisy is treasonous.

    I recommend Bushie for a Gold Trident of Excellence award, only because I hear they gave a miniature of that thing at the Garrison, of which he is so fond.

  23. David

    It matters not how many broken promises unkept, how many lies told, how many are now being told or promises broken, how many lies will be told in the future or promises broken.

    People like you are so addicted to these religious lies that the sacraments of the deified political culture will continue to be taken as if ordained by the political gods.

    You can’t, on the one hand, irrationally apportion causality to the demos. And on the other, concede that the system is fatally flawed by broken promises, lies and the impossibility of getting politicians to make contact with truisms.

    For there is no way, given our current system, for any demos to play any effective role when such a massive and historical deficit of truth exist. And that is only one major problem. Others may relate to the relative resources as misallocated in the David and Goliath unfair fight which David was bound to lose.

  24. So who is salivating for one of these whatever they are….

  25. Wunna right to laugh at Bushie’s donkey….

    Both Sargeant and N.O. done know that the Bushman don’t want no stinking Trident – neither gold nor silva…
    Bushie’s award is stored in a safe place and will be inscribed in honor of the whacker, which Bushie relished.

    For the time being, wunna could leave out the ‘Dr’, de ‘Most Honourable’, and the damn Pitchfork,

    SIMPLE Bushie, or the more formal, Stinking Bushie is fine…

  26. “For the time being, wunna could leave out the ‘Dr’, de ‘Most Honourable’, and the damn Pitchfork,”


  27. Sarge
    Based on the response from the man himself, looks like I’ll settle for the most honourable ole boar!!

  28. On the topic of truths and promises
    “The 2020 BOSS bonds and the 2022 BOSS Plus bonds are exempt from any restructuring that may take place at any time in the future, and if you listen to the experts from the Ministry of Economic Affairs, they will make it very clear that the circumstances which existed in 2018 in the first instance that led to a complete restructuring of Barbados’ international and domestic debt do not now exist, and therefore the notion of a domestic debt restructuring as was done in 2018 is an absolutely false narrative that does not exist in reality,” she said. (Sen Lisa Cummins)
    Note the wording….”if you listen to”..
    I en saying so, I only telling you what others, who know, are saying.
    Fool me once…….

    • If the government cannot borrow by issuing bonds to service its obligations what is the alternative Northern?

  29. Northern…can’t believe they have the nerve to push that scam…

  30. The Bank of Canada is widely expected to deliver yet another oversized interest rate hike next week, lifting its policy rate into restrictive territory for the first time in two decades, but bets are split on whether or not a pause will follow.


  31. Barbados has many energy possibilities.

    Solar. Wind. Wave.
    Desalination is still possible to solve the drought problem

  32. If the government cannot borrow by issuing bonds to service its obligations what is the alternative Northern?
    Same as anyone else who have run out of begging and borrowing options…
    What do you think BUMS and Street Characters are…?
    …or countries like Sri Lanka, Burundi and DR Congo?

    When will you surrender to the REALITY that our donkeys are grass..?

    By the sweat of his brows should a man eat bread… not by borrowing from the sweat of others.

  33. @David
    You should address that question to the MoF or any of the junior Finance Ministers or any of the many Consultants. You have Greenidge, Persaud, White Oaks, etc etc etc
    Or maybe you could consider exactly what those “obligations” you reference are.
    When is that IMF program decision due?
    You already know my bets have been on the compulsory vs the optional, a long time ago.

  34. Sep 2, 2022 A Barbados Labour Party (BLP) supporter who said she walked through the sun and the rain canvassing for candidates for The City of Bridgetown seat, is feeling abandoned by the party in her time of need.

    Wendy Lashley, a 65-year-old who lives in Hunte Street, The City, also worked as a part-time maid at the BLP’s headquarters on Roebuck Street, The City

  35. Hants…ya got the jump on me, only just saw this video with these NASTY LYING POLITICIANS and the way they treat the Afrikan people who bend over backwards to get them elected…

    Stop voting for trash……ALL OF THEM ARE TRASH…so stop voting for them if you don’t want this personalized treatment of NEGLECT and DISENFRANCHISEMENT…

    So…where is this ladies pension and disability payments…

    oh ah forgot THE PENSION FUND GET TIEF…

  36. you notice these supporters of trash governments…can’t even afford dental care…..let alone healthcare or food.

  37. Benefits are paid to those who paid into the scheme. She is not yet eligible for pension. Any benefits she is due will be paid, once she qualifies. The problem is twelve years down the line.

    She needs some assistance from the Welfare Department, National Assistance Board and the Urban Commission or whatever it now is. I understand there is to be an amalgamation of all these entities.

    Those she helped to get elected should now help her. It is a shame that it had to come to this.

    People dying continue to outstrip newborns, says BSS
    By Shawn Cumberbatch

    Barbados’ population continues to shrink, as the number of Barbadians dying exceeds those being born.
    This latest Barbados Statistical Service (BSS) evidence of the decline comes amid concern about the negative implications Barbados’ falling birth rate has for the future of the National Insurance Scheme.
    Overall BSS data showed that Barbados’ death rate has been consistently exceeding the birth rate since 2016.
    At the end of last year the country’s estimated population was 269 806, a decline of 6 494 people since 2010.
    Based on the BSS’ Births And Deaths Report for the quarter ended March 31, the population has been falling further, ending that period at 269 132.
    The Government agency said that between January and March there were 555 births, an 11 per cent increase over the 500 recorded in the same period last year.
    However, there was a 40 per cent increase in deaths in the same time, 1 004 this year versus 717 in last year’s first quarter. Nineteen centenarians were among those who died, an increase over the nine aged 100 to 109 who passed away in the first three months of 2021.
    Deceased age groups
    “All age groups registered expansions in the numbers of deceased persons; the highest rise was in the 90 to 99 age group (64.6 per cent), followed by the 70 to 79 age group (49 per cent) and then the 60 to 69 (41.5 per cent),” the BSS said.
    “In January to March 2022, the larger number of deaths was attributed to males – 506 as opposed to 498 females; whereas in the same period for 2021, 352 females passed away, 13 less than the number for males.
    Marital status
    “With regards to marital status, single persons accounted for 44 per cent of all deaths, followed by married which stood at 25.4 per cent. St Michael for the second year running, had the largest number of registered deaths – 370 for quarter one of 2022 and 248 for 2021,” it added.
    The fewest deaths were recorded in St Joseph in the first quarter – 16. St Andrew had the lowest in the same time last year – 11.
    Regarding births, between January and March the report said that “for the first quarter in 2022, female registered births (287) exceeded those of males (268); conversely, in the same quarter of 2021, 255 males were registered when compared to the 245 females”.
    “The greatest number of births registered with respect to the age of the mother was in the 20 to 29 age group, 255, down slightly from 258 in the period under review of 2021. The next age group that had a large number of births was the 30 to 39, with 228 in 2022 and 216 in 2021; which was the largest number for that age group
    for the quarter,” the BSS reported.
    “For the period January to March 2022, the youngest mother was 14 years, followed by two 15-year-olds, while the oldest mothers noted were both aged 45 years. In 2021, the age of the youngest mother was lower than that of 2022, 13 years; but it should be noted that the oldest mother registered in 2021 was actually older than the ones recorded in 2022 – 48 years.”
    The BSS also said that “on the other hand, there were three 18-year-olds, who were logged as the youngest fathers for the period in 2022; conversely, the oldest was 61 years. For 2021, the oldest father was at the cusp of the 70 to 79 age group, while the youngest was 16 years old.”
    The report also noted an increase in the number of single babies registered in the period under review, as the number of twins declined in 2022 to eight from 20 in the first quarter of 2021 and there were no triplets born in either year.
    “Quarter one of 2022 saw expansions in the number of births for all parishes except for St Philip and St Thomas, which recorded contractions of seven and four, respectively. The parish with the most births was St Michael (202) and conversely, St Andrew registered the least (nine),” the BSS said.
    “The north of the island reported significant increases in the number of births. St Peter, St James and St Lucy recorded the highest rises of 31.6 per cent, 23.3 per cent and 21.4 per cent, in that order.”

    Source: Nation

  39. Pension planning not adequate
    The following article was submitted as a Letter to the Editor by Kammie Holder.
    Retirement, can be a luxury for some or the most miserable chapter in the final stages of life for many. Funding for retirement, usually comes from three main sources, social security, personal pension plans and accumulated savings, known as the three-legged stool.
    Planning for retirement is by no means, a task that should be taken for granted, and should be clearly discussed with a team which should include but not limited to, a competent financial advisor and attorney, for it’s a very expansive and complex subject which I cannot cover in one article.
    Income gap
    Very often, many cannot retire because of what is known as RIG or Retirement Income Gap, the difference between what is accumulated in a retirement fund and what is needed to maintain adequate and comfortable living.
    Experts posit an amount of 60 to 80 per cent of final years monthly income is adequate.
    Truth be told, the expenses eliminated from retirement will vary from individual to individual. Daily transit and lunch cost are the two main expenses eliminated, while clothing cost is also reduced. However, the stark reality for most is, if you cannot live adequately on 100 per cent, how will you exist on 80 per cent in an era where corporate greed \\is fuelling extreme inflation.
    Expenses do not disappear during retirement and such things as health care, property taxes, food prices and property maintenance are ever increasing.
    Worrying to me, are persons who entered variable 30-year mortgages who are now seeing astronomical rising interest rates. No wonder British newspapers reports on how five-figure income households are losing their homes in the recession sweeping through Europe.
    In Barbados, proper pension planning is inadequate, lacking, not widely available, and often lacks critical concise solutions, to ensure a personal Balance Financial Portfolio, funds the retirement nest egg.
    Created crisis
    Let’s be sincere, to say the removal of the tax credit by the government of Barbados in 2015, has created a crisis in waiting for Barbados, with its aged population, that will create epic geriatric poverty in years to come. It was ill-advised and lacked clarity, I know some will seek to blame the IMF but the blame lies at the feet of what I will call a visionless linear thinking government.
    My studies and readings have led me to conclude, many wait too late to plan for retirement and miss out on the miracle of compounding. To wait in your forties to plan for your retirement is way too late, and the amount that you will earn as a monthly pension will be embarrassingly disappointing. Taking a job at the minimum wage rate will not help and will only contribute to stress and an early death. To put it in perspective we have women down the Harbour Road working 40 hours weekly, taking home $288 weekly.
    A person who at age 45 decides to start paying into a retirement plan contributing $500 monthly with a one-time lump sum of $6 000, with a projected retirement at age 67 will only receive $1 560 monthly under a period certain of ten years, let us say I used an extremely generous pre-retirement interest of seven per cent, tax rate at four per cent and an inflation rate of some three per cent.
    For clarity let me juxtaposition this against a 25-year-old, using the same assumptions above. This individual, thanks to the miracle of compound interest, would receive a monthly pension income of some $4 088 monthly. Again, I say if most find it hard to live on 100 per cent how will they live with 80 per cent.
    Be warned, many born in the 60s and 70s are in for a rough retirement and will not find it possible to retire, for it will not be possible because of large Retirement Income
    Gaps, exacerbated by high inflation and a punitive tax regime, that does not punish consumption.
    National consultations need to be had by all stakeholders, for social security will not suffice, nor will menial subsistence jobs fill the retirement income gaps. I am saddened to say, every turkey will have to fend for themself, for the social welfare network will not be able to cope and having adequate retirement income is your responsibility and not that of any government.
    Call me an alarmist but I am a realist who is never afraid to share the unpalatable truth, for avoiding facts never defeats potential vagaries.
    The silence of the life insurance industry of which I have served the last 36 years, is embarrassingly mute.
    Expenses do not disappear during retirement and such things as health care, property taxes, food prices and property maintenance are ever increasing.

    Source: Nation

  40. yeah….blame the HEIST of the pension fund.. on falling birth rates ….and increasing deaths for the last 6 years…sounds like a plan THAT NO ONE EXCEPT FOOLS BELIEVE..

  41. People dying continue to outstrip newborns, says BSS
    “However, there was a 40 per cent increase in deaths in the same time, 1 004 this year versus 717 in last year’s first quarter. Nineteen centenarians were among those who died, an increase over the nine aged 100 to 109 who passed away in the first three months of 2021.”
    Do a search and see how many times Bushie had pointed out on BU, this 40% INCREASE in overall deaths (not just in Barbados, but wherever Covid vaccines were deployed).

    Now that the actual NUMBERS are in, perhaps we can begin to see….

    The bigger picture however, is that this project called ‘Life on Earth” has run its course. Like ALL life forms, this END phase comes along with disfunction, chaos, change, and confusion….
    EVERYTHING, …from the weather, climate, earth resources, food, water, security, and even COMMON SENSE seems to be reflecting the degeneration associated with old age.

    It will only get worse. So vaccinating our school children now, may actually make sense in the current circumstances.

  42. So is it true someone stole the steel frames from the chinese barns…

  43. Has anyone else noticed our attraction to failures?
    Duguid has been a textbook case in point. Lotta shiite talk …and NO success.

    He was behind the short-lived license number plate tag – an idiotic scheme by ANY measure, given the ease with which any dishonest person could remove a tag from someone’s vehicle and fix it to theirs. There was absolutely nothing wrong with the license fixed on the INSIDE of the windshield.
    One wonders how much money he wasted…?

    He also came up with the Chinese steel houses and the shady ‘EAST WEST’ scam at $28M for 150 houses in six months. 18 months later, only a ‘show’ house and a few outliers to show …. and no word on the $28M spent, until the Auditor General does his thing next year.

    So what happened to this chronic failure… ?
    Was he made Junior Minister of dentistry and sent packing back to his failed business?

    Nah!!! He is now SENIOR minister in charge of national infrastructure… according to today’s Nation.
    LOL Oh SHIRT!!!

    The REAL joke is that Duguid is TYPICAL of the country’s ‘leadership’ from justice, crime, agriculture, fine ants, trade, sport….. ONLY a CURSE can explain such a situation. Much like God did to Pharaoh when he ignored Moses….

    Predicting that our ass is grass is a no-brainer….



    And that, knowing the time, that now it is high time to awake out of sleep: for now is our salvation nearer than when we believed.




  45. BT

  46. “Do a search and see how many times Bushie had pointed out on BU, this 40% INCREASE in overall deaths (not just in Barbados, but wherever Covid vaccines were deployed).”

    Some fancy footwork there. Ali would be envious.
    On the other hand, some believe that the increase in deaths was due to Covid-19.
    Both sides have their champions.

  47. I had the pleasure of driving up and down the wonderful motorways on the Platinum Coast at the weekend.

    Everything like new. Thank you, great Minister Druid, for your amazing work!

  48. IMF boost?
    by SHAWN CUMBERBATCH shawncumberbatch@nationnews. com

    BARBADOS’ CHANCES OF GETTING a credit rating upgrade will improve if Government enters a new International Monetary Fund (IMF) programme, says Moody’s Investor’s Service.
    With the country’s current IMF Extended Fund Facility expiring this month, the Mia Amor Mottley administration is yet to announce if its economic reform programme will continue with the international financial institution’s supervision and financing.
    However, in its latest published credit opinion on Barbados, dated June 23, 2022, Moody’s said a new IMF programme focused on fiscal consolidation and structural reforms “would be credit positive for Barbados”.
    “We expect Barbados and the IMF to announce that agreement on a new programme will be reached soon,” the international credit rating agency stated.
    Barbados, which defaulted on its debt in 2018 and subsequently concluded domestic and external debt restructurings, currently has a non-investment grade Caa1 stable credit rating from Moody’s. The agency said ratings of Caa were “judged to be of poor standing and are subject to very high credit risk”.
    Moody’s said Barbados’ credit rating would be upgraded “if, in addition to the resumption of fiscal consolidation, growth rebounds sufficiently to reverse the pandemicrelated increases in debt and result in primary surpluses that lead to a sustained reduction in Government debt metrics”.
    “The successful implementation
    of structural reforms leading to higher medium-term economic growth and improvement in competitiveness would also improve the sovereign’s credit profile,” it explained.
    But the rating “would be downgraded if the Government fails to resume fiscal consolidation, such that high deficits lead to an additional build-up of Government debt”.
    “A reversal of the recent recovery in foreign-exchange reserves and renewed pressure on the currency peg would weaken creditworthiness,” the firm said.
    Moody’s observed in relation to the IMF that Barbados “has consistently met quantitative targets set in the IMF programme; discussions about a new agreement are under way [and] in May the IMF’s staff level agreement completed the final review of the country’s Economic Recovery and Transformation programme supported by Barbados’[EFF]”.
    “The report noted that all quantitative targets under the EFF for year-end 2021 and for 31 March 2022 were met. Most significantly, Barbados increased its international reserves, a development that provides important support to the country’s credit profile,” it stated.
    Moody’s overall assessment was that “Barbados’ credit profile is constrained by high debt levels and weak economic growth. Moreover, large transfers to its state-ownedenterprises limit flexibility on the spending side”.
    “The pandemic has also weakened the Government’s balance sheet and delayed
    its ambitious reform agenda. However, relatively high income levels and low exposure to foreigncurrency- denominated debt support creditworthiness,” it said.
    “Moreover, the Government’s recent debt restructuring has significantly improved its fiscal position and we expect debt metrics to improve gradually over the next few years as the economy opens up and the government rebuilds its primary surplus.”
    Moody’s expects Government’s efforts to improve its fiscal position to “resume after the effects of the pandemic abate, supporting a net decline in the Government’s debt burden over the next three to five years”.
    It said Barbados would have “limited financing opportunities in the coming years because its IMF programme explicitly prohibits the Government from using marketbased financing”.
    “While the Government’s rollover risk and overall financing needs have diminished substantially in the wake of its debt restructuring, its ability to access market-based funding will
    remain limited, which could increase liquidity risks for the government in the future if the fiscal deficit were to reverse its improving trajectory,” it added.
    Moodys’ said the stable outlook attached to its current credit rating “balances Barbados’ high debt levels and subdued growth against strong pre-pandemic reform momentum”.
    “Despite the severe economic shock, reform efforts have continued and we expect the recovery in economic activity to support fiscal consolidation more in line with the high primary surpluses and debt reduction observed before the pandemic,” it said.
    “On the other hand, the uncertain speed of recovery in the tourism sector increases risks to Barbados’ fiscal outlook.”
    Moody’s also said it expected the recovery in global tourism flows to support an economic “rebound” of seven per cent growth for Barbados this year, and four per cent in 2023 “before the country gradually returns to potential thereafter”.

    Source: Nation

  49. The fallout from collaborating with and facilitating CROOKS…

    “Regrettably, apart from the government of the day opting not to tweak the fund at that time to extend its projected sustainability, it impaired the fund by deliberately accumulating arrears of employer contributions that it was legally obligated to pay,” he said.”

  50. I did not remember this blog, which is much more appropriate for my comments.

    John2 September 15, 2022 7:56 AM #: “That statement should should be removed immediately. I am sure he can find a more appropriate statement and just leave it off.”


    That’s exactly my point.

    Although I understand Layne’s intentions, I believe parliamentarians should develop empathy between themselves and their constituents, or any other persons who are seeking their assistance.
    A more humane statement would’ve achieved that objective.

    Instead, using that ‘old saying,’ suggest he’s being intolerant and contemptuous of them.

  51. Mr. Skinner

    What concerns me is the fact that, during an election campaign, politicians go into constituents’ homes, pretending to be friendly and concerned about their well-being, sitting on their floors, eating food, drinking drinks and promising ‘the moon and stars,’ because they’ll do anything for a vote.

    After ‘winning the seat,’ the “duly elected representatives” immediately becomes inaccessible to the people who elected them, while surrounding themselves with ‘pimps and yard-fowls’ who take pleasure in treating constituents with contempt and ‘doing the dirty work.’

    I remember during the 2013 election campaign, the representative for our constituency and his entourage were canvassing one afternoon.
    The politician’s brother asked the few of us who were gathered together, if there was anything we wanted.
    A friend of mine said he wanted a job. The politician’s brother said he ‘did not know if MTW, Drainage Unit or NCC wanted people.’
    When the representative came, he spoke with my friend and told him to visit the constituency office.
    When the guy visited the office, the representative gave him a recommendation letter to take to a particular state owned agency that was under his portfolio.

    After leaving the office, he tore up the letter. I agreed with him because that letter was only a convenient gesture to say the representative was doing ‘something’ for the guy.
    If his INTENTIONS were GENUINE…… and the guy was a member of ‘the inner circle,’ the politician would’ve either sent or taken him to the SOE…… and he would have gotten a job.

    A guy and girl who canvassed for the politician and are members of his constituency branch, were REWARDED with certain jobs at NCC and Constituency Councils respectively.

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