Tackling incompetence

Barbadians have been advised the National Petroleum Corporation (NPC) will be engaged in road works in several areas including BRIDGETOWN during the month of October 2023. It is no secret Broad Street, Fairchild Street, Marhill Street, St. Michaels Row are heavily used roads any day of the week except on Sundays.

Red arrow shows open trench at the junction of Marhill Street and St. Michaels Row

It therefore beggars belief why a deep trench would be left for motorists to reduce speed to almost a dead stop in order to prevent damage to vehicles. The blogmaster is not criticizing the NPC project to improve service to the area, the criticism is levelled at how the project is being managed. How difficult can it be to cover the trenches with pieces of metal during the off work period? Bear in mind the cumulative effect of cars having to slow to negotiate the open trench which will add to traffic congestion.

The message the open trench sends to observers is that zero consideration is being given to taxpayers. One irony is that the taxpayers whose taxes pay these incompetents are being negatively affected by the inconsideration of a government corporation.

On a related note, in 2018 Barbados Underground highlighted a concern about the attention paid to assessing the physical infrastructure in the country by asking if the Charles Duncan O”Neal Bridge was inspected periodically by engineers, see Bridge Collapse Should be a Warning for Local Authorities. Last month a woman was injured as she walked along Tudor Street because parts of a building fell to the ground. Bridgetown is an old city and building codes and timely remediation should be a priority matter for relevant authorities. Why do we pay taxes? What is government’s responsibility to citizens it was elected to serve?

The following 1 minute 15 second video is recommended viewing, the subject matter is whither our building code.

35 thoughts on “Tackling incompetence

  1. @ David

    I’ve read the article, which was cleverly prefaced with a photograph of Lisa Cummins.

    And, I clearly understand the concerns raised therein.

    However, are you suggesting the NPC workmen leaving a trench uncovered is another one of the current administration’s ‘Foul-Ups, Bleeps & Blunders’ and Ms Cummins is incompetent as a result?

    • Boss..
      She would be responsible if the establishment of National Standards was part of her portfolio… which it is… via BNSI

      However no single ministry can unilaterally establish their own renegade performance standards, such leadership has to come from the top… and via the Law…

    • “If the NPC doesn’t fall under her ministry the blogmaster will humbly withdraw it.”


      Clearly “the blogmaster,” according to Andrew Mason, ‘is struggling.’

      The NPC workmen leaving a trench they dug uncovered and unprotected is, by any standards, unacceptable.

      Shouldn’t that have been attended to by the supervisor on duty?

      I AGREE wholeheartedly that the current BLP administration has demonstrated a ‘worrying level’ of incompetency in several policy related issues.

      But, to blame the Minister and deem her to be incompetent as a result of an uncovered
      trench, simply because ‘the buck has to stop at the top,’ is, in all reasonable fairness, ‘scraping the bottom of the barrel’ desperately hoping to find something to support the ‘incompetent mantra.’

  2. @ Artax
    Bushie also read the article and did not (yet) get the Lisa Cummins connection.

    However the CLEAR lack of standards HAS to be tagged as a foul-up ANY incumbent administration…
    Since, surely, job NUMBER 1 for any administration, must be the establishment of minimum standards by which we will operate as a society….

    CLEARLY we cannot have a society where ANY Tom, Dick or Arty can just ‘dig up the public road’ and leave the public to fend for themselves….
    …or decide to ’not pay nurses’ because of some technicality.. and let them beg for food and shelter..

    …or are you saying that we can…?

    • @ Bushie

      You’re not only struggling, to use another Andrew Mason phrase, you’ve ‘come out swiping wild, throwing everything at the ball, even the kitchen sink.’

      Bushie, let’s be rational and reasonable, while exercising some level of fairness in the process.

      The NPC was established through the National Petroleum Corporation Act of April 1st, 1981.

      This clearly suggests that, for the past FORTY-TWO (42) years, NPC has been ‘digging up the road,’ either to lay or repair natural gas mains.

      Are you suggesting that, in 2023, the Minister should’ve ‘established minimum standards’ as guidelines to tell NPC workmen, including engineers and supervisors (ADULTS), ‘all trenches dug should be covered and protected, as a precaution and in the interest of public safety?’

      Surely you jest. But, then again, we all know you’re a ‘risible guy.’

  3. As to why a crew dug a trench and left it unprotected cannot reach up to a Minister?
    This relates to the crew and their supervision.
    Frustration reaching a tipping point?

    • @NO

      This matter compares with the Springer Memorial over simulation incident. It is not the single act of incompetence by the field team, it is the culture of incompetence that has prevailed for years regarding road works by the utilities.

    • @ Artax
      No comment!

      …mainly because each of the six drafts attempted so far exceeded the number of cuss words that a bushman is allowed by the blogmaster, per sentence… 🙂
      …besides, you obviously were NOT serious …or have not given the matter sufficient thought…

      So Bushie will leave you to work this one out…

      The fact that you FAIL to see the value of establishing RULES for EVERYONE – (including engineers and supervisors) tells us that you worked in government FAR TOO LONG…. (or at least you got a salary from government for far too long..)
      ha ha

    • 1\2

      @ Bush Tea

      RE: “The fact that you FAIL to see the value of establishing RULES for EVERYONE – ”

      Please INDICATE WHERE in my contribution I MENTIONED ANYTHING that SUGGESTS, I “failed to see the value of establishing rules for EVERYONE……?”

      The point I RAISED was SPECIFICALLY about deeming Cummins incompetent because NPC left a trench uncovered and unprotected.

      You’re PURPOSELY being UNTRUTHFUL (TELLING LIES in Bajan parlance), perhaps ‘to get cheap laughs.’
      But, then again, you’re a RISIBLE guy.

      You cannot deny that, over the years, successive BLP and DLP administrations have not only “established minimum standards by which we will operate as a society,” but enacted laws as well.

      As it relates to road works, for example, sometime during February 2018, then Minister of Transport and Works, Michael Lashley, proposed legislation to ‘better manage work carried out by utility companies in this country that impact the road network.’

      Unfortunately, Barbadians continue to OPENLY DISREGARD laws on a daily basis.

      The illegal and indiscriminate dumping of garbage.
      Coconut vendors leaving coconut shells on the highway.
      Flouting the road traffic regulations on a daily basis.
      Squatting and illegal vending by undocumented non-nationals…… I could go on and on.

      However, it does not REQUIRE legislation or even “minimum standards by which we will operate as a society,” from a Minister for at least ONE or TWO individuals from a group of workmen, to simply cover a trench.

      Simple commonsense, which, in addition to morals and ethics, cannot be legislated.

    • 2\2

      “……tells us that you worked in government FAR TOO LONG…. (or at least you got a salary from government for far too long..).”

      I agree with you 💯% that I “worked in government FAR TOO LONG….:

      Had two government jobs. One in a SOE and another in a specific department for a cumulative total of 12 years.

      Opportunities for advancement, promotion etc, at the former, were available only to those persons who were associated with the ‘party in power.’

      I enjoyed working at the latter, but left because I could not ‘tow a normally accepted line’ to treat people ‘unfairly.’
      And also disapproved of people doing shiite and coming to me for assistance.

      Similarly to those workmen who had the choice whether or not to leave the trench uncovered and unprotected…

      …… I had the choice to either remain or leave.

      My conscience was my guide.

    • “My conscience was my guide.”
      Artax, we all know that your heart is in the right place, and that you are the result of a mighty undertaking…

      Your ‘issues’ can likely be resolved with a slight realignment of the cerebral and emotional aspects of your persona, ..and both Bushie and the Blogmaster are dedicated to that task…
      …shiite Boss, you COULD be a bushman in the making… LOL ha ha ha

      Meanwhile, in answer to your question above,
      “Please INDICATE WHERE in my contribution I MENTIONED ANYTHING that SUGGESTS, I “failed to see the value of establishing rules for EVERYONE……?”

      You asked….(Oct 27, 8.22pm)
      “Are you suggesting that, in 2023, the Minister should’ve ‘established minimum standards’ as guidelines to tell NPC workmen, including engineers and supervisors (ADULTS), ‘all trenches dug should be covered and protected, as a precaution and in the interest of public safety?’
      Surely you jest.”
      How would you interpret this then …Artaxy…?
      OR rather… How do you think a NORMAL brass bowl like Bushie would…?

    • RE: “How would you interpret this then …Artaxy…?”

      Simple Bushie.

      That, in the year 2023, it does not require a Minister to “establish minimum standards” as guidelines to tell adult NPC workmen, ‘all trenches dug should be covered.’
      When the only requirement in such a situation is BASIC COMMONSENSE.

      My comments were SPECIFIC to this thread, which you ‘twisted,’…… ‘Bushie stylie,’…. to generalize them. 😠

      RE: “OR rather… How do you think a NORMAL brass bowl like Bushie would…?”

      Hmmmmm 🤔

      Honestly, Bushie, I don’t know. Perhaps a psychiatrist maybe much more qualified to answer that question.


      Yuh see, your incoherent ramblings about the “Independence Monument” at the Garrison, suggests you’re NOT “a NORMAL brass bowl.”

      And, also raise some very serious psychological questions about how you INTERPRET things.

      🤣 🤣 🤣 🤣

      But, then again, you’re a RISIBLE guy who ‘likes to get cheap laughs.’ 😃

      According to the Blogmaster, ‘you may have the last word.’

  4. An uncovered trench on such a thoroughfare. Truly Turd World thinking.

    No legislation to enforce such codes. A new Act sans Section 44 of Building Codes. Who’s protecting whom?

    An uncovered trench is the responsibility of the field supervisor. Since he’s/she’s slacking and lacking, nothing short of a kind, caring site worker could have solved the issue with a temporary fixed WARNING SIGN for all.

    Stinks of Incompetence, Mediocrity and a general lack of Awareness.

    Where’s the Enforcible Legislation to protect all?

  5. Did you all listen to the guy in the video?
    Did my story of a toy train with all the bells and whistles but not going anywhere cross your mind or did you forget.

    Different people, different motives, different reasons, different wording but all are saying the same thing … the train isn’t going anywhere.

    Perhaps I should shut my mouth and let you continue dreaming.

  6. The first part of solving a problem is understanding what the problem is.

    If our engineers study in Trinidad for 3-4 years and see the low standards being practiced over there, it should be obvious that their end product when they return to Barbados will be shoddy work.

    This failure at a management level and the adoption of low standards

    If our lawyers go to Cave Hill for 3-4 years and see the low standards (theft and lies) being practiced in our courts, it should be ….

  7. This blog and the regular bloggers are pure comedy. The same knowitalls for months now have been pushing the planning office to give Kinch permission. Even when Kinch ignored the established laws/standards/processes, they persisted in the process cussing the law etc; but now here asking for laws/standards. LMBAO! To give Kinch permission while he is in talks to sell the same piece of land to government would be what, if not incompetence?

  8. Come on Enuff…
    REAL incompetence is about government selling land without establishing the boundaries, the price guidelines, the conditions of sale….
    …and apparently HOPING that their ‘intended beneficiary’ would ‘win the bid’

    Having voted out THAT shiite government, we were HOPING for a new set who would CLEAN SHOP…. not just seek to transfer the ‘intended beneficiary’ to the new political camp….

    Most of the international Standards are about HONESTY and TRANSPARENCY…

    So stop griping ..and admit that your lot is no better that the last set of jokers… just a bit more articulate…

    • Has the prime minister intervened in the Savvy matter yet as promised? It must be a thorny issue to solve.

  9. Just asking (for information) is Artax a member of the “flame brightly burning’ association; an ‘up and on’er guy? Just asking.

    • “Just asking (for information) is Artax a member of the “flame brightly burning’ association; an ‘up and on’er guy? Just asking.”

      WHY are you ‘asking?’

      I don’t know where you’re ‘coming from’ with the “a member of the ‘flame brightly burning’ association” remark……

      …… but, if “up and on” is a reference to the best school in Barbados, affectionately known as ‘Waterford University,’ then, I ‘plead guilty.’

    • Good morning Boss…
      Does this mean then that YOU are failing badly in not highlighting all of the various failures on BU ..so that the ‘authorities’ can quickly move to correct the situation…?

      Have you ever noticed that we NEVER seem to hear (or CARE) about who SHOULD HAVE routinely covered these open trenches before, …WHY they failed to do what the are paid to do…
      AND WHO FAILED to deal with this ineptitude…

      Our problem is SYSTEMIC boss, and can ONLY be solved by wise leadership.
      …you already know the ‘challenge’ that we have with wisdom…

    • @Bush Tea

      What is incredulous is that the powers that be(excluding the field gang responsible) must have traveled that area many times in recent weeks and nothing was done to give relief to motorists. There is a growing cultural of incompetence that has now reached an ‘endemic’ level.

    • Response to Artax; Welcome brother, Up and On is also my motto, and ‘the flame brightly burning assiciation is a natural follow-on, because that “university” appeals to us to “keep the flame burning brightly ever. Never forget that. It is only now that I know you must be a Cawmerian.

  10. Bushie + David

    Please stop! Incompetence is Incompetence. What’s laughable is that the same person all yuh accused of getting a handshake when the sale of this said land hit BU back in 2018 or 2019.🤣🤣🤣

    • @enuff


      There is incompetence which is a function of deficient skill sets by an employee in an assigned role. Then there is inaction by ‘managers’ of employees not addressing for political reasons in this case that leads to a non performing culture.

  11. Until today, I have never thought of being a politician. But I just booked a trip and I thought of Mia’s frequent flyer miles and thought “what if I had some of those”.

    I tried to estimate her number of miles and was stumped. But then I thought … if rabbit can use Mathemagic then so can I.
    350x10x25x5 =437, 500 miles.

    Unlike rabbit, I did not pull those numbers out of a hat
    Why 350 – We believe Mia is out of the country 350 days a year
    Why 10 – that is the security staff who accompanies her
    Why 25 – officials and hangers-on who make up the Barbados delegation
    Why 5 – these are the years she was in office

    Given that the distance from London to Barbados is about 4,000 miles and from China to Barbados is about 8,000 miles the above etimate can be defended. In fact, I believe that 437, 500 is a low number.

    Mathemagic is an extremely powerful tool.

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