GOLDEN ANCHORAGE LTD/SUNSET CREST AND BWA Matter

The following communication was widely distributed to BWA, Members of Parliament, Bankers, Law Firms and others – Blogmaster

Dear General Manager Keithroy Halliday,


Today Thursday July 8, 2021 a group (around 4 persons) of BWA staff led by supervisor Rueben Sealy came to my office at Lot 243, Flamboyant avenue, Sunset Crest  around 1.15pm with the intention of disconnecting my sole water supply. When I confronted your uninformed staff. with my original DEED of ownership, asking that they not engage in any activity or damage any of my property or trees I was totally ignored. Furthermore, Tina Landro-Parravicino (a UFO and squatter on my estate) held discussions with your BWA staff and even gave instructions about several water fittings on my estate, even though she has no title to my property (Sunset Crest/LimeGrove/Beach Club/Sunset Crest Propriety club).

As a last resort, I made a call to the Holetown Police station whereby several officers attended to the scene a few minutes later. It was only after the Intervention of the officers present that the BWA staff ceased their activities, but not after causing damage to my property.

It should be noted that this action by your BWA staff is not only illegal, but immoral as:

All BWA meters, pipes and or fittings run along ALL THOSE LANDS solely owned by myself, Joseph K Jordan lll (Golden Anchorage Limited). Rents for the use of my lands have not been paid and are due from/by Barbados Water Authority (BWA). On this estate, there is an existing covenant, which cannot be infringed by any ACT (including the BWA ACT).

No bill/invoice for payment has been produced to myself  Joseph K Jordan lll for use of residential water. As such, how can BWA disconnect with no proof of a liability?

Being private property (inclusive of the roadways, sidewalks, easements and pathways) comprising condominiums, villas and hotels, BWA has no legal right nor authority to trespass on my private estate without my permission and a valid warrant. This includes removing any items, trees or fittings from any of these 104 acres approximately of land.

Barbados (like every country in the world) is still battling a pandemic where personal hygiene and sanitation is preached  daily as a requirement to avoid an explosion of COVID infection among both locals and tourists (The lifeblood of our economy and Sunset Crest). How can you in good conscience disconnect a person’s water supply during these times?

In conclusion, I hereby notify you, the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) and the Government of Barbados that no BWA staff nor contractors shall trespass on my estate as of today, July 8th, 2021 without my prior written consent. Furthermore, as a gesture of goodwill, I am willing to meet with yourself to discuss an amicable resolution to this situation providing the original deeds/conveyances and release deeds that are not only registered at the Lands Registry but also at the High Court Registry.

I thank you in advance for your cooperation and expect your reply within 5 days of this communication.

Joseph K Jordan lll

OWNER/PROPRIETOR

Difficult Conversations – Paid in Ash

Last week, I described nine decisions that I would take during my first hour, if I was Prime Minister for one day. This week, I will share seven decisions that I would take within my second hour at the helm.

WATER RELIEF.

I would instruct Minister Edghill to provide continuous water to those who have been without water for years, within 2 weeks. This is too long overdue. Approximately 90% of the cost, effort and time to get water to the reservoir in question, is in the trenching to get the pipes in the ground. That is why it is taking years to get this done. Quick relief can be provided by running water lines temporarily on the surface, and trenching at road crossings that do not have drainage culverts.

The BWA can contract several private sector construction companies to trench across all the required intersecting roads, install pipe sleeves, and then backfill the trench. A construction crew can complete at least one intersecting road in one night – hence the need for several contractors. Once people have relief, the BWA can then resume their slow-trenching to put the mains underground.

WATER CONSERVATION.

Every household should be able to afford water for their basic needs, and have an incentive to conserve water. Therefore, I would instruct Minister Straughn to remove the Sewerage and Garbage taxes from the Basic Needs category of water use, on BWA water bills.

INNOVATION.

Barbadians should be encouraged to innovate. Therefore, I would instruct Minister Bradshaw to re-establish the national innovation competition this year – which was stopped in 2015. The prize budget for marketable prototypes, should be at least as much as that for calypsonians during the normal Crop Over competition.
I would also instruct Minister Sutherland to have the BIDC venture-partner with willing producers of marketable products from the competition, to commercialise them. This is also long overdue.

CREATIVITY.

Our artists should commercialise their work. The problem is that commercialising products is both an art and a science. Business success is measured by making money from products. If you are not making money from your products, then you are not operating a business, but a charity.

I would instruct Minister King to set up a business department in the National Cultural Foundation, within one month. The business department is to be self-funded within one year. Success is to be measured by the amount of revenue generated for artists.

It is critical that this business department is not managed by politically partisan persons, with no evidence of business success. Otherwise, the department’s mission will likely be frustrated, and failure is foreseen to be certain.

VACUUM THE ASH.

It is extremely inefficient, and unnecessarily dangerous, to have persons sweeping ash and dirt from our highways. There are road vacuum trucks that are designed for that purpose.

I would instruct Minister Edghill to find where our road vacuum truck is parked, and get it into service immediately. If it cannot be found, then order another one – which may also be used to clean ash from the airport if we get another ash-fall.

SELL THE ASH.

Volcanic ash is sold on the Internet for around BD$5 per kg. Therefore, the ash has value. But it seems that Barbadians are being tricked into giving it away for free.

The volume of ash that can be collected from our roads and roofs is approximately 50,000 cubic metres. Assuming a bulk density of 1,000 kg/cubic metres, and a cost of $5/kg, results in a value of $250 million. Collecting only 80% of the ash results in a value of $200M.

The Government receives approximately $175M in land taxes each year. The Government instructed Barbadians to collect the ash, and give it to the Government without compensation. Therefore, I would instruct Minister Straughn not to demand land taxes in 2021 – since it has already been paid in ash.

Grenville Phillips II is a Chartered Structural Engineer. He can be reached at NextParty246@gmail.com

Water NOT Running

This is a follow up on an earlier blog Water Running.

The blogmaster is pleased update the BU family that the authorities fixed the pipes at the location. On behalf of the BU household we thank the civic minded BU family member for taking the time to highlight the matter AND the relevant authorities for responding.

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Good to Go

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Submitted by Grenville Phillips II, Leader of Solutions Barbados

The Barbados National Trust has the lawful responsibility of identifying Barbados’ historical treasures, for their preservation.  They examined the underground building at Fort George, and found nothing of historical significance to deserve being listed.  Their sorry excuse was that they were given a choice of either its complete demolition, or providing water to Barbadians.

It took a special type of blind trust, for the National Trust to believe that those were our only two options.  The BWA could have placed their new water tank at a lower elevation west of the underground building.  If the BWA claimed that they needed the additional height, then they could have built a tank with a smaller diameter and greater height, or they could have used an elevated tank.

Even if the BWA insisted on constructing their new 1.5 million-gallon water tank over the priceless international treasure, they could have done so.  How?  Because the building was so exceptionally designed and built, that it could have easily supported the weight of 1.5 million gallons of water plus the tank.

A comfortable factor of safety used when designing foundations is 3.  Which means that the foundation can support 3 times the maximum expected load.  The underground building could have supported over 4 times the entire weight of the full water tank.  Therefore, not only did the building not have to be demolished, but the marvel of having the building supporting 1.5 million gallons of water would have proved its exceptional design.

After the BWA stopped all demolition, the Barbados National Trust’s sole responsibility was to get the building listed and have their plaque installed – nothing else.  Had the National Trust performed their basic duty, then the BWA would have been forced to justify the lunacy of demolishing one of the most important international heritage buildings on this planet, to the Town and Country Development Planning Office.

If the BWA demolished a listed building without Planning permission, then the recently passed Planning and Development Bill makes the person at the BWA who ordered the demolition, and the Contractor, liable to a fine of $500,000, or imprisonment for 10 years, or both.  By colluding with the BWA to destroy this exceptional building, the National Trust denied the Planning office their critical role of representing our interests.

The Barbados National Trust failed Barbados, and the international community of nations, by choosing not to have the building listed.  The National Trust had no business negotiating with the BWA in secret, to completely demolish this building.  The demolition contractor noted that they would never have demolished the building had it been listed.  The only conceivable reason to consider demolishing such a building was if it was structurally unstable.

The demolition contractor explained that the building was so stable and well-constructed, that it resisted all of their normal attempts to demolish it.  This was an engineering marvel, where even impact demolition loads were efficiently distributed throughout the building to its foundations.

This was likely one of the last buildings to be designed by one person who was both an Architect and an Engineer, where the structure was the art.  Around the time of its design, the disciplines were separated, and the architect concentrated on the art while the Engineer concentrated on calculating the safe strength.

The building demonstrated the quality of work our fore-parents could achieve away from the slave master.  The workmanship was exquisite.  There was so much that we were supposed to learn about our past from this building.  Thanks Barbados National Trust.

Since it would not be demolished like any normal building, the contractor resorted to construction methods used when excavating through hard rock.  He used the heavy hammer.  Still the building resisted.  This wonderful building had survived generations of: colonial rule, major hurricanes, earthquakes, and misuse.

Even after its betrayal by the Barbados National Trust, it still went down fighting.  There was so much redundancy in the redistribution of loads, that it simply would not collapse.  It was designed to protect its occupants regardless of the amount of expected damage to individual blocks.  But purposeful demolition was not foreseen.

The Barbados National Trust not only ensured that there will be no consequences for this atrocity, but they set a dangerous precedent for other developers.  Namely, if anyone wants to demolish a historically important building in Barbados, just call the Barbados National Trust, bamboozle them with any nonsense, and you are good to go.

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Fort George Horror

No words can describe the horror of learning this week that ‘intelligent’ Barbados Water Authority (BWA) workers proceeded to destroy 50% of a historical site while doing excavation work at Fort George Heights. The callousness of thinking and ignorance appeared to know no bounds.

The following was extracted from Grenville Phillips II Facebook page – BU, Blogmaster

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Approximately one week ago, I learnt of a magnificent coral-stone structure found at Fort George Heights. It reportedly had 26 beautiful arches, and a series of coral-stone masonry arched roofs approximately 12 ft high.

This seemed to be a rare find. These were not the typical decorative archways. Rather, these were structural unreinforced arches out of coral-stone masonry. I could not believe Barbados’ good fortune.

We have lost the art of stone masonry. But here we had an almost perfect example of highly complex coral-stone masonry. It is more complex than our Parliament buildings, which are simple walls.

I am unaware of a similar series of coral-stone arched roofs on any structure on this planet. It is a unique and priceless international historical treasure.

Last week, the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) destroyed approximately half of this wonderful structure, before the Barbados National Trust got them to realise the horrific blunder they were making. To their credit, the BWA stopped the demolition.

The next obvious steps were to: prepare as-built drawings of the structure, do a structural condition survey, and manage this priceless treasure on behalf of all humanity.

The structure had survived gravity and lateral loads, so I planned to visit the site today to check whether there were any cracks in the blocks or mortar joints. There are so many scientific papers that could be published on this most important find – perhaps the ninth wonder of the world.

I had heard a rumour that the Government demanded that the remaining structure be demolished. I dismissed it as fake news, because no one could be that stupid.

As I made my way up Fort George hill, I was overcome with excitement at the anticipation of examining the beautiful unreinforced stone arches – the only such arches on this Earth (to my knowledge). However, when I approached the site, all I saw was rubble. The Contractor had completely demolished every single arch. I was overcome with a different emotion – anger.

How could we. How could we be so stupid. We have demonstrated that of all of the people who came from Adam, that we are the most … stupid. It is not thought possible that such stupidity could reside in humans, but we proved otherwise.

The BWA Board and CEO should resign immediately. All 30 MPs and all senators should resign in shame and disgrace – tonight. Everyone who knew about the lunatic decision to demolish this priceless international treasure, should be taken to Jenkins for a psychiatric examination. How could they?

This is no low order idiocy. This is idiocy of the highest order. They are worse than ISIS. ISIS uses Islam to justify destroying world treasures. We have no such excuse. If we cannot be trusted with this priceless treasure, the only one left on this planet, then what can we be trusted with? How could we be so blasted stupid? Good grief!

 

Barbados Water Authority Unable to QUICKLY Fix Leaks

The following note was received by the blogmaster today from a BU family member around 10AM. It is self explanatory.

The thought which comes to mind – we have our priorities wrong. The BWA built a headquarters for how many million? Yet we are unable to respond to the most basic customer request i.e. fix a leak!

Hi David

My neighbour discovered this water leak on the supply side of their line and notified BWA on Saturday of last week (Feb 11th). They were informed that it would be attended to on Monday of the following week. They called again on Tuesday as no one came by on Monday. On Wednesday, a crew finally visited for a short while and left without resolving the situation.

BWA was called again on Thursday asking for an update. I am told that the response given was “We are under pressure with a lot of leaks so we will get back to you when we can”.

Today is Saturday 16, February and the situation remains unchanged.

Keeping in mind that the average flow rate of a kitchen faucet is 2.2 gallons per minute, is it any wonder that the people of St Joseph, St John and St Andrew are suffering from low water pressure and/or denial of service?

 

Chairman of BWA Leodean Worrell Exposed by Innotech

The following document was received from a trusty source and needs no explanation except to say – even in disagreement human being should exercise a basic human quality of mutual respect to ensure the outcomes.

The blogmastser invites Chairlady Leodean Worrell to respond to the document attached and promises that her response will be given equal prominence on the blog.

Innotech

Sabotage What!

Before the crap hit the fan on the South Coast the blogmaster was haunted by a pronouncement of Dr. John Mwanza almost three years go. It was at the height of the embarrassing period the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) was unable to supply water to rural parts of the island. Mwanza reminded Barbadians that besides Barbados being a water scare country, an old mains network had continued to undermine the quality of BWA’s water distribution network.

Wise heads in this forum have often cautioned about successive governments failing to make quality decisions be it the management of the National Insurance Scheme (NIS), Public Transportation, Waste Management, Judicial System, Enforcing the Financial Rules to name a few. A reminder that all members of parliament should have to complete a mandatory training the Pros and Cons of Good Decision Making?

What some of us cannot process is the decision by the BWA to construct a 50 million dollar headquarters in St. Barnabas. Key decision makers would have been aware that the BWA distribution network has been compromised by a 100 year old mains network in some parts of the island.  Some commentators estimate the mains are leaking greater than 50%. The blogmaster would add that until recently all the pumping stations- many in a bad state of repair- were totally dependent on fossil power.  Despite the 60% hike in the water rate. The inability of the BWA to honour its financial committent to Innotech under a lease purchase agreement comes as no surprise to sensible observers.

While arguments can be made for housing the operations of the BWA in a modern structure – one does not need the benefit of hindsight to judge that it was a poor decision to commit millions of taxpayers dollars to construct a state of the art building while at the same time 104 water tanks needed to be installed in parts of the island- standpipe style.  We should be embarrassed.

On a related note the SSA built a modern building at Vaucluse to house the operations at a time the authority was unable to maintain a fleet of garbage trucks. Bare in mind the authority has also been unable to oversee a comprehensive waste disposal system. Up to the time of posting this blog the new SSA building estimated to have costed taxpayers 30 million dollars remains unoccupied.

The preamble is to sound a warning to the Mia Mottley government.

As a people – represented by our elected government – we cannot afford to continue making poor decisions. In this instant the supply of potable water. With the exception of a very few government and parastatal agencies the consensus is that they are poorly managed. Minister in the ministry of finance Ryan Straughn recently pronounced:-

…that Government will be taking a closer look at the process by which people are appointment to boards…Minister Straughn says a key provision of the draft law will be the introduction of the fiscal responsibility principles, which will hold government accountable for fiscal policies it implements. Sanctions will also be introduced against public entities, which rack up excessive debt, or fail to supply financial statements. An audit committee is also to be established.

As a people we have to hold elected AND public officials accountable. Whether it is Dr. John Mwanza or Prime Minister Mia Mottley crying SABOTAGE without being pressed by civil society to support with credible evidence. Whether it is civil servants not adhering to the financial rules of government. People must be held accountable.

Big up the Auditor General Office!

A Grenville Phillips Column – Lunacy

Jo-Ann Haigh

She was the most visible demonstration of rare competence during the last DLP administration. Despite everything falling around her (low water pressure, water outages, water leaks, sewage in the streets, etc), she made us feel that the BWA truly cared and were trying their best.

She appeared to single-handedly manage two national crises that were not improving, but getting worse. Yet she performed to a level of excellence that is not normal in the public or private sector of any country on this planet. As Communications Manager, she seemed to be on call 24/7/365 and consistently on point – an impressive level of commitment.

Most persons appear to receive national honours for doing work for which they were already paid to do. If there was ever an exemplar of a person who went far beyond the call of duty in putting Barbados first, and the needs of Barbadians over her own, it was Joy-Ann Haigh. For her demonstrated consistent level of excellence, she was deservedly given Combermere School’s alumni’s Flame Award, normally reserved for persons after a career of exemplary service.

Joy-Ann Haigh was the BWA’s most valuable resource, without doubt. Therefore, it took a special level of lunatic management to place her name on a lay-off list, and incompetence of the highest order to actually send her home.

If such a critically important post is being made redundant as reported, then we have the rare misfortune of witnessing, within the BWA, a demonstration of the next psychological state after madness, whatever that happens to be. We were told to simply elect and watch, well, watch on with dismay.

Illegal Company (IFL Pipeline Inc) Invoiced BWA 3.4 Million Dollars

[Barbados Underground] On the 16 August, 2018 Barbados Underground (BU) published the blog – Was Michael Carrington VAT Registered When he Invoiced the BIDC 706 thousand dollars?. The article also included a concern by the blogmaster about a 1.5 million dollar invoice submitted by Hal Gollop to the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) for services rendered. If we wanted to hammer home the point of abuse of taxpayers funds, flouting of government financial rules, graft and malfeasance practised by government officials AND private players,  $766,855 paid to Richard Byer for vetting a simple agreement for The Caves of Barbados under Denis Lowe’s watch should have been included –Make Legal (Professional) Fees Paid by Former DLP Government Public.

The Auditor General needs to be given some teeth to pursue individuals and companies that abuse the financial rules of government and receive taxpayers monies under questionable procurement practices.

A few simple questions based on the documents attached.

Is IFL Pipelines Inc a legally constituted company under the laws of Barbados?

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Local Media Dithered as Sewage Plants Entered Failure Mode

The Minister of the Environment Wilfred Abrahams toured the location last week where two tanks designed to support the treatment of sewage by the Bridgetown Sewage Plant have been allowed to deteriorate because of lack of maintenance. What he revealed to the public is that one well has been out of operation for almost two years and the other is operating at 20% capacity. God forbid the single operating well fails, the potential for another south coast event of greater magnitude is predicted to be the result.

The 2018 general election is behind us and ALL the ministers and members of parliament paid a price for their inept management of the affairs of Barbados. The final tally of the votes revealed that 70% of the voters placed their X next to Barbados Labour Party candidates. However, there are two questions Barbadians must ask and demand answers:

  1. How were South Coast and Bridgetown sewage plants allowed to deteriorate to the current state and the local media not made aware either via investigative effort or from ‘sources’ and information shared with the public?
  2. There is a management team in place at the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) charged with the responsibility for the management of waste water and all that it entails. Should senior managers at the BWA be held accountable for the sewage disaster as well?

Call out the prayer warriors as a nation holds its collective breath for the next 28 days.

Barbadians Suffering from Fatigue with a Capital F

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Fruendel Stuart (l) Denis Lowe (r) – the buck stops with Prime Minister Stuart.

 

And there shall arise after them seven years of famine; and all the plenty shall be forgotten in the land of Egypt; and the famine shall consume the land King James Bible

For 7 years plus the Barbados economy has been contracting. The country has been running a deficit on current account. We have had to significantly reduce capex. And this is despite raking in unprecedented levels of revenue if the reporting from the relevant government agencies are accepted. There is a resignation by Barbadians to the fact those charged with managing the economy seem are unable to do so. The discussions everywhere is whether this is due to incompetence or other reasons.

If we are to buyin to the government’s mantra that we should strive to build a society not an economy, ‘recent’ developments in the country have served to challenge this objective.  As if carrying the weight of an nonperforming economy on their backs like the proverbial albatross has not been the greatest burden- there is the evidence daily of the country’s infrastructure crumbling before our eyes. The sick South Coast Sewage Plant has occupied the newsfeeds on the domestic and international front in recent months. The prime minister FINALLY addressed the issue frontally by informing the country this week a request has been submitted to the IADB and experts to assist Barbados in addressing the problem. Bear in mind the leader of the Opposition Mia Mottley had informed the prime minister this was a problem waiting to happen two years ago. Like how most issues are dealt with in Barbados the politically expedient decision was taken, she was ignored.

Can you imagine this is the government that was this close to foisting a gasification plant on an island nation the size of which had never been built anywhere on planet earth?

After 7 years plus of economic famine, 2 plus years of a leaky sewage plant on the South Coast- today the local US Embassy slap Barbados with an advisory.

Event: Recent tests at several U.S. Embassy residences revealed bacteria at elevated levels in the tap water.  As a precautionary measure, the U.S. Embassy recommended to its staff to boil their drinking water or use bottled water.  The U.S. Embassy will continue to monitor the situation and will provide updates accordingly.

Actions to Take:

Assistance:

We are a few weeks from a general election being called, clearly decision making by the government will be steeped in political consideration and antithetical to what is in the national interest. Even if the government by some miracle is able to fix the problem in the weeks before the general election there is the memory of a fatigue public to factor and anticipating how they will respond on election day.

The BU household cannot wait for election day to arrive!

Barbados Water Authority Press Conference | Sewage on South Coast a BIG Problem

David Estwick, Minister responsible for the Barbados Water Authorty

The problem of sewage running on the street of the South Coast is so serious BU shares a public service recording produced by the Barbados Water Authority which attempts to explains the challenge.

Hal Gollop’s 1.5 Million Dollar Invoice

The Hal Gollop 1.5 million invoice

The following was posted to BU on another blog and worthy of penetrating discussion afforded a separate blog-space.

William. Please post the following info as well. Firstly, the BWA bought the land on which the building is located over 15 years ago and under the NHC Act. So the notion that he had to regularise the title to the land is absurd.

Secondly, Clarke Gittens and Farmer, the law firm which worked for the financier and whose legal fees the BWA also had to pay and who prepared ALL of the documentation) charged $275,000.00.

Thirdly, the BWA found the bill to be so large, that they had to pay the fees in installments.

Michael Carrington invoiced the BIDC fees of $1,000,000.00 for sale of a building at Newton Roundabout.

Michael Yearwood charged the SSA $1,500,000.00 for the Cahill project, when the SSA Board did not even have any knowledge of the project.

Richard Byer, a DLP member, charged Caves $750,000.00 for work which, when it was first done under the BLP, the fee was only $30,000.00. Same work, but the fee is $720,000.00 more.

But David Thompson led from in front, as any good leader would. According to the CLICO forensic report, Thompson charged CLICO $2,000,000.00 for the purchase of CCB, and the he charged CLICO a fraudulent and wholly fictitious $3,300,000.00 for work that did not even exist.

And we have to ask how much Adrian King, son of Maurice King, charged Clearwater Bay Limited ( the government entity) that guaranteed the loan to The Four Seasons project? Some say $5,000,000.00

 

Water Strategy Required

Reproduced from Andrew Simpson’s Facebook page.

water_nitrateYesterday I attended, as a member of BAPE; on the invitation of the BWA, a meeting to address water scarcity and to build a roadmap toward achieving water security. Dr Mwansa made a presentation which was prepared by Anthony Headley that outlined hydrological, regulatory and universal understanding. Accepting that Barbados is deemed a ‘water scarce’ country, based on the precipitation which can be accessed, clearly demonstrated the importance for careful management and wise utilization of this precious resource.

Along with the design, development and maintenance of a system to adequately harvest and store fresh water, with which our nation is naturally endowed; it was clear that the need to reduce, reuse and recycle equally relates to water; as it does to packaging and other lifestyle outputs. The idea of resource self-sufficiency must form part of the solution, with commercial / household USE of rainwater catchment, by way of implementing dual plumbing techniques along with any overflow being directed to the aquifer by using boreholes. In order that waste (grey water) be applied to suitable purposes; and for sewage (black water) to be recovered with treatment technologies where applicable, it is accepted that a national initiative will be required. A greater appreciation of the true value of piped water, in the meantime, is believed by many, to hold the greatest reductive potential for this scarce commodity. Such achievement can be immediate, by the GOB, through the PUB and FTC, implementing a tiered rate structure which attempts to place true value on the price tag for potable water. A doubling, trebling and quadrupling even, of the rate paid for consumption bands above essentially acceptable usage, based on the number of occupants in a household, or as otherwise qualified by acreage under food production, etc. would cause conservation and regeneration efforts to quickly follow.

Much technical writing is widely read and understood, thanks to our enviable education system, but exercise of practical knowledge seems rare. This conundrum is not specific but exists across the social spectrum. Stakeholders must unite in discovery and endeavor to join hands, link minds and bind hearts to rectify this dilemma. Most citizens acknowledge that the surrounding circumstances are less than ideal. The press and social media are reaching large segments society but somehow; the reality is not “hitting home” to those charged with the power to alter the way we react, as a people; toward the suffering of OTHERS. Is it a human callousness; a refusal to accept that we can do better, or simply that too many of us are so caught up in the mire of a frantic existence, that our sensitivity is diminished? This brings me, to what I believe to be, the heart of the matter – an ideological deficiency causing our perceived identity to be at odds with our true reality. The major underlying reason for this is an excess of socialist undertaking hampering the opportunity for true market freedom to manifest. The prosperity which naturally goes hand in hand with responsibility, to sustainably manage our natural resources and the environment around us, is being denied.

The challenge, at this historical juncture, is to build consensus, to correct anomalies that ‘encourage unhealthy practices’ while incentivizing right behaviors, to forge a way of life that balances tastes and economic provision. We must determine to work as a TEAM, toward this imperative. The faith exercised thus far, by our people has enabled our Nation to advance by leaps and bounds, over the course of the last fifty years, but has created a downside which needs to be managed. The interest costs alone, required to service the debt which successive governments have ‘chalked up’, has become unbearable. Coupled with the ongoing appetite for increased salaries, wages and conditions associated with the ‘army of occupation’ supposedly needed to provide these services, to which we have apparently become accustomed, are financially unsustainable.

A paradigm shift, in the way that the ‘ship of state’ is operated, and a course change, now desperately required, must be undertaken. The father of our independence, The Right Honorable Errol Walton Barrow, in his famous “Mirror Image” speech, suggested that we consider what image we have of ourselves. This sentiment; no, this ultimatum is more pertinent now than ever. “All hands on deck” must be the battle cry of ALL, if we are to move ever forward.
God Bless Barbados.