Traffic congestion on the roads in Barbados has always been horrendous as it is in most countries at peak hour. In recent years with the increase in the number of vehicles licensed and unlicensed on Barbados roads peak time has to be redefined.
The reopening of schools for the autumn term, relaxing of Covid 19 protocols, aggressive road rehabilitation resulting in closures have combined to create chaos. It is not acceptable the HOURS spent traveling to work, school and other engagements on a 166 square mile island. What is happening is an indictment on the state of ‘development’.
How many times commentators in this space and elsewhere have lamented the lack of planning of housing and road development, transportation management, placement roundabouts (why do we permit motorists to block through-traffic at roundabouts if the exit is jammed?). Let us not forget an urgent need for a waste to energy program. The blogmaster can point to many visible examples of a lack of vision and poor execution responsible for the current comatose state.
The focus today is the time spent on the roads by locals which must negatively be impacting productivity and emotional well being. It is embarrassing at this stage of development that an individual’s first objective is to purchase a Suzuki Swift. How can a 166 square mile island support 150,000+ vehicles on what has been described at one of the world’s dense network of roads? There is the opportunity to highlight the average Joe/Jane owns more than one cellphone to access FLOW or DIGICEL.
Who is the minister of transportation again? Does it matter the name? How many vehicles do we observe daily on the roads with license plate stickers with 2020 dates? Why does it take so long to implement projects designed to improve the current situation and instead it makes it worse with a clawback necessary to save face? Sensible citizens are made to feel embarrassed when those responsible are not held accountable. In fact there is the feeling that many elected to serve the public do not feel obligated to communicate with taxpayers. A good example is the ‘absolute’ mess unravelling with the NEW TRIDENT ID CARD. So far not a coherent utterance from the invisible Minister Davidson Ishmael (the blogmaster had to Google the name to get it right).
It is obvious Minister Mia Mottley is operating at a different level to her parliamentary colleagues. The reason given by Mottley for selecting – not once but twice – a bloated Cabinet was to be able to attend to the job of rebuilding a weak economy. Are we there yet? Can the public look to alternative representation in the political and NGO spheres to maintain tension on those elected to serve the public?
Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me…
Will the real leaders please stand up!