Why CBC/(ICB) and BCC Can NEVER Optimize

Submitted by Cherfleur

In two separate court hearings, these two iconic institutions said a lot about themselves. It explains where and why they are where they are in the scheme of progressiveness.

BCC –
The Chair, no less than Velma Newton, Attorney-at-Law (I am told), advised the Court (through the Deputy Chair, Ms Denny) that the Hand-Book is not contractual. After six years of attempts at Mediation to make them ‘see the light’ BCC, through its Chair mounted a defense of using wrong form and no form (of some kind). That is all well and good. So what happens when the corrections are made?

A blunt refusal to read their Hand Book and learn. A blunt refusal to come to Mediation when they are as wrong as the sun setting in the east. What began as only a Breach of Contract has morphed into a Breach of Consumer Guarantees including false advertising. Of course, you’d only know this if you compare them to other colleges. BCC was not and I believe are still not accredited so they have programs that do not meet the basic requirements for Associate Degree level, they advertise one thing and offer another, they rob students the choice of electives in some programs, tamper with Transcripts/Records, issue Records with calculated errors and the list goes on. This matter has gone to appeal, or at least I filed something of the sort.

What 21st century Leader or Leader at all would expose their organization to such degradation and public scorn and ridicule?

CBC –
Goodness, gracious. As Trustees of an entity as important as Employees Pensions Fund, CBC and its cohort ICB (back then) do not understand the workings of the Group Pensions Plan they are managing. They don’t know that Pensions is not Insurance. In fact, no one seemed to understand that minute peculiarity, but me and the young lady, the Pensions and Insurance Manager, at the Financial Services Commission.

Nevertheless, FSC’s Management and CBC’s Management are refusing to honour the Rights to Information Act and give a copy of the Master Plan for CBC/ICB Group Pensions Plan. Constitutional Rape! ICBL Attorney-at-Law advised, proudly, that as far as she knows a Named Beneficiary on ‘an Insurance” policy cannot be challenged. It would seem that this rubric she is using was from time memorial. That Law went into effect in 1997. But notice, I said Pensions. Nevertheless, this matter was heard and dispensed with since December 2020 but to date no Order is forthcoming.

Why? I shall appeal. Also, they don’t want to acknowledge that ‘likkle me’ understood the ICB Handbook and the Pension Scheme.

An appeal means Cost to the Defendant.

There would have been no Defendant if CBC’s GM and HRM at the time, knew what they were doing with the company’s Pension money.

That being said, here is why they won’t optimize to becoming global institutions. They lack structure and integrity. Perhaps vision too. That is because they are the Public Service operating in an island State aka Banana Republics.

In Arabia, a young Republic, UAE, is marching forward towards global status. The government is positioning its country and people at a national level through training. Every agency and institution is being positioned to take that country to its global capacity. Not just those in the monarchy but ALL. Intentions!
Global Government Summit.

Responsible Leadership for Infinite Success – Simon Sinek – Full Session – WGS 2019 – you have to listen to the end to the Question and Answer section.

“Are we there yet?”

Do we even understand what ‘Responsible Leadership’ is?

There are no Leaders among these ‘ears of corn’. We have people taking taxpayers’ dollars in monthly installments.
Rather than make good just decisions across the board, for the most part, the Public Service, first, is a dump for Party Poopers (square pegs in round holes) then wimps who merely do party biddings.
We Banana Republics cannot and will not optimize with these attitudes.
It would have been better for these institutions to learn from their errors and develop and progress but not even a slap on their wrists. So CBC continues as it always has, at a loss and ‘lost’ and BCC, dysfunctional as ever, perhaps is still offering and executing barren programs. You’d only know this if you had reason to compare it to a ‘real’, functional college.

But Velma engaged Pat Cheltenhan’s firm for the first round and will for the second, perhaps. Who is paying? The devil is in the details. I learned from one of the very errant Attorneys in another one of my cases that what the Judge assesses as Cost is not all that the Attorney’s fees is. Who is paying all of that?

At the end of all of this, BCC has to conform to a proper structure and delivery of its programs. Whether so that I benefit or just because the Accreditation Body demands.

But at what cost to taxpayers?

Not to mention that their inefficiencies are now a matter of public record.

CBC Pension Scandal

Submitted by Cherfleur

SOCIAL JUSTICE NETWORK & CLINICS
CBC Pension Scandal
In the High Court of Judicature – CV 2550 of 2002

In September 2000 CBC paid out the proceeds from a CBC/ICB Group Non-contributory Pension Policy to a named beneficiary. The 2nd Claimant is the rightful heir to the deceased assets. The named Beneficiary, Dawn Abrams-Grazette (defendant), first told the Claimants and their attorney Dr Haynes Blackman that everything belonged to the 2nd Claimant. Upon instructions by Dr Blackman that his Clients would be taking charge of the Estate, the defendant became acrimonious. She claimed she meant everything in the estate.

Pensions are Trusts and are part of a deceased estate under protection. I started from this trajectory. Thus ensued two decades long search and battle to bring these proceeds back to the rightful beneficiary.

The defendant claimed that since the named beneficiary was her it was hers and was for
her only. You can learn a lot from a dummy!

The 1st Claimant would have none of this. Court proceedings were initiated using the Succession Act. Dr Blackman died, the second Attorney became a judge then Rositta Babb died, Carolyne Herbert died. All these attorneys agreed that the second claimant had priority to the beneficiary as per the Family Law and Succession Act.

Between 2002 and 2015 a dozen attorneys were consulted and all reiterated that once a
named beneficiary is noted that is that.

CBC for their part and as Administrator/Trustees of the Group Life Pension Plan did nothing, like claw back or rescind the payment since they had that authority under a non-contributory Pension Plan. It was the CBC’s Plan not the insured/deceased. Instead the then General Manager hid behind a veil claiming the CBC carried out the deceased wishes. Not forgetting it is a non-contributory pension plan. The GM is now Chairman.

Between 2015 and 2018 the claimants retained a new attorney and was told that they had to prove that it was intended for the minor by way of the specifics of the plan. The attorney tried to get information from the CBC regarding the terms of the Plan. Though information about the kind of Plan and when it was effected was provided CBC refused to give any information regarding the operation of the said plan and who intrinsically is entitled to claimor benefit from it.

At a deadlock the 1st Claimant suggested that if the attorney could not by authority get CBC to hand over the information she would take over the case and so the attorney pulled out. This signalled apparent blood dripping and the defendant’s attorney jumped at the opportunity to strike out on the grounds of an abuse of process but the 1st Claimant argued differently. The matter was adjourned to March 2019 for submissions from both parties. The 1st claimant took charge and reread all the information received for CBC and ICB’s Members’ Handbook and proceeded. Listed in the information was the fact that the policy was effected in 1996 (the year before the new Insurance Law which states a named beneficiary is final)

A visit to ICB met with more stalling because the Letters of Administration had expired. They too refused to cooperate. However the Members’ handbook had clearly stated that benefits were for dependants only. It also stated that the Master Plan for this Policy was lodged with the Inland Revenue Department (IRD) which was originally the statutory body handling Pensions and Insurance.

Submissions were filed within the deadlines but the matter (because the claimants were
self represented) were being adjourned and adjourned until red-phone calls began to fly.
During all that time the Claimant visited four locations of the IRS now BRA only to be told
Pensions and Insurances are being handled by the Financial Services Commission (FSC).

In October 27 2019 the parties met before court for pleadings. The Judge was unwilling to
hear from the ‘unrepresented’ party. However pleadings proceeded and the matter was adjourned to January 27 for a Decision and Claimants to seek counsel. There was no need
for counsel since all submissions were already filed. The adjournments were working in the Claimants’ favour.

A visit to FSC and discussions and explorations revealed that the two instruments are very different. In the words of the Officer: Pension is not Insurance. Dumbfounded the Claimant asked to clarify that statement and was told each has its own legislation. Armed with this new information the Claimant filed further submissions to include this detail as well as new independent submissions for the second claimant reinforcing the right to maintenance and priority…

On January 27 there was no decision forthcoming. New pleadings erupted about the further submissions and the erroneous defence of using the Insurance Act to defend a Pension Plan.

The matter was again adjourned to April 1st for decision. There was a national lockdown
from March so nothing came of that, although some sectors were functioning virtually,
including the Judiciary. The courts resumed operations since May 18th but no decision yet forthcoming.

From May to now is four months where decisions are due within three months.
From January 27 to now is eight months.
Barbados is a twilight Zone.

Even the Judiciary where justice is sought is of questionable behaviour. Its rank of incompetence and other odiousness. It is no wonder the cases are backed up. Judges playing the A********* all the time. Clogging up the system with cases that need only be heard once and discharged but rather adjourning and adjourning and
adjourning. Its a scam.

As long as it takes, a decision one way or another has to be made. It cannot be made in favour of a defence on the Insurance Act.

  1. The 2nd Claimant has priority as per the Succession Act
  2. The Pensions Act and ICB Handbook and Master Plan dictates benefits for
    dependants only. The 2nd Claimant is the sole issue and dependent of the deceased.
    Me, just me and my statistician and secretarial skills was able to unravel a rather
    straightforward case in effect. No mystery no intrigue. Just common sense.
    Twenty RH years. Paying attorneys that were spewing more RH. I could have decided to defend this case since 2002 and be over and done with it. But nothing happens before its
    time.

The claim before the courts is for:

  1. Return of the Policy proceeds and interest and multiplier (% devaluation of each $1)
  2. Damages for duress and opportunity cost
  3. Devastavit of estate
  4. Disgorgement (seizure of all gains made from the proceeds).

I do not know how attorneys are learning or how they are serving clients but they are just not impactful and or knowledgeable in uncommon areas of the law.  One attorney, number 13, with a PhD was adamant that I didn’t stand a chance because there is a named beneficiary. None of them noticed (or perhaps they were representing the defendant or protecting CBC), that the particular policy went into effect before the amendment to the Insurance Act (1997).

My advice to employees of CBC is that they check and update their beneficiaries to their Pension Plan regularly to ensure that who they want to have it gets it. Do not depend on the Administrators of the Plan. It is either they do not know or understand their responsibility or the operation of the Plan or it was a grave duck up.

Secondly, mothers who have children with workers at CBC and are eligible for Pensions (10years service) should ensure that the beneficiary form is completed properly and where necessary an added notation (on the Form) expressing who the proceeds are for where there is a named beneficiary other than the children.

All is well that ends well.

Open Letter to Media Practitioners

 Submitted by an Anonymous blogger

arbados Association of Journalists and Media Workers (BARJAM)1

Journalism in Barbados is dead and unfortunately no one seems to know when it died. Was it one single event or a series of events? Perhaps we can point our fingers to defamation laws or perhaps we can point our fingers at the close ties between the media and the government or maybe it is the business class. You don’t think journalism is dead? Let me show you why I think it is.

Apes Hill

In 2015 the Apes Hill project owned by Bizzy Williams borrowed 25 million from the NIS “Dat is the people pensions.” Apes Hill has since “defaulted” on this debt  according to the upper echelons of NIS with not so much as a blink of an eye. I’m just a nobody and know this, I have alerted the various political parties and they seem unbothered, whispered in the ears of the media and they seem unbothered.

This article isn’t about “poor” Bizzy though so let me continue, hopefully a journalist can interview him and ask him if he even plans on returning the money. But moving on…

Corruption Allegations

In like every year since independence allegations of corruption existed ? Honestly I’m not old enough to know or remember, but it feels that way. The BLP elite fan the flames of allegations, while stating there is evidence of over-invoicing and other questionable practices, but somehow not enough to bring anyone before the court. They are playing a dangerous political game and any reasonable journalist would ask about the evidence or stop writing about it. For example you allege to have evidence of various overpaid lawyer fees yet fail to bring it to court? Surely the government has access to not only to the old paper trail, but also to the bank accounts of government to generate new statements. I’m sure a journalist can figure this out, so what is the issue?

Alternatives to Defaulting?

From my extensive research as a non journalist countries don’t default on their debt; it is exceedingly rare. From the Washington Post to The Economist that point is reiterated over and over again. My simple journalistic question is this;

“If a country goes to the IMF to improve its creditworthiness, why default and then go to the IMF?”

Let me ask that a different way, what sense would it make publicly telling your bank that you are are going to refinance and their is nothing they can do about it (defaulting) and then hoping that a future bank or lender would want your business.

Journalism Under DLP rule

Before some partisan person states that I have DLP bias I should perhaps state that journalism under the DLP was equally as woeful. The only thing I’m thankful for is that the media really did their job in helping to oust the persons who brought the economy and country to its knees. Perhaps one could argue that journalism wasn’t dead in the months leading up to elections, the media struck back? So kudos to the media there for that small victory, however if the media were perhaps doing their job the economy wouldn’t have gotten so bad and perhaps we wouldn’t even had had the DEMs again in 2013, but alas that is history.

Investigating, shaping the minds of the public  

Perhaps the media houses had too much control in any case and this dilution of power is a good thing and the tradeoff is simply shoddy journalistic standards as the media can no longer afford to retain the best talent. Perhaps we need more civic minded persons to write and speak out or perhaps only experts not auditors speaking out as economists or politicians speaking out as professionals beyond their scope. I don’t have all the answers so don’t mind me either for I’m not a journalist.

P.S. Advocate, Nation or Barbados Today(pretty sure Barbados Today wished a reporter recently) I apply to be a journalist as of mid October 2018 Terms and Conditions apply. Perhaps I can contribute in some small way.

2nd P.S. Freelance only ! I don’t wish my NIS going to well never mind.

Signed,

Humble farmer

General Secretary Caswell Franklyn of Unity Workers Union Accuses BWU of Being Irresponsible in the CBC Strike Matter

VETERAN TRADE UNIONIST CRITICISES BWU FOR ITS HANDLING OF THE CBC MATTER

Veteran trade unionist and General Secretary of the Unity Workers’ Union, Caswell Franklyn says the Barbados Workers Union only wants to show its might rather than being right.

Mr. Franklyn says there should be no dispute over the increments issue which was negotiated.

He adds that the actions like those being taken by the BWU have hurt the union movement’s image over time, and resulted in some unions continuing to lose members

CBC News Staff Worried About Michelle Arthur Becoming Director of News

Submitted by CBC Staffer

Does Michelle Arthur have the inside track to take over as Director of News ?

Does Michelle Arthur have the inside track to take over as Director of News ?

There could be a strike or some kind of protest at CBC soon. Staff of the news and current affairs department are waiting to see who the board is going to appoint to head the department. Arnon Dyal has  been acting as director of news since Reudon Eversley resigned this year but he is supposed to go on retirement at the end of this month.

Michelle Arthur has been walking about telling people the prime minister promised her the job and the staff are awaiting to see if this will happen. Michelle Arthur is trouble. Few people at CBC like her. She has caused a lot of confusion and problems. The last time she was appointed to act in the position when Reudon Eversley was on study leave, she lasted two days. The staff walked out on her and CBC changed its mind. She walked about telling people it hurt because she was president of the BWU division and fight for staff and the staff did not stand up for her.

Staff have many issues with Michelle Arthur. She is behaving like she is the news director already. Every day now she parks in the yard in the spot for the Director of News and Current Affairs like she is sending a message. Michelle Arthur has created a lot of confusion and strife at CBC. Staff are worried that if she is appointed she will terrorise people because she terrorising people already as assignments editor. If she likes you, you can do what you like like her child father Sean Farrell who came into CBC one day and threatened to lick her up. If she does not like you, she walks over you and tries to make you look small in front of everybody. Shane Sealy can tell you. She has been trying real hard to get him out of CBC. The administrative assistant can tell you about Michelle Arthur and her childish behaviour.

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Prime Minister Stuart’s Second Term and Expecting Real Change From the Political Parties

Submitted by Hamilton A. Hill

Will Arthur stay on?

Will Arthur stay on?

The tsunami of emotions that was campaign 2013 is now behind us and except for a battered ego here and there Barbados will settle down to a state of normalcy and life goes on. So too does business, though we hope not as usual.One can choose almost any angle from which to begin the advocacy for change, but the area of public influence and its manipulation is where this writer’s soap box is mounted.

There can be no denial of the biased stance taken by some in the media against this Prime Minister and his government. From the flat out ridiculous to those that bordered on disrespect, certain comments became a part of life in Barbados. That having been said, the governmental tic for tac that has been the staple of the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation since inception must be ended. As we recognize the ruling party as the government of Barbados those in the minority form the official opposition of Barbados, must be respected as such.The respect due would surely resonate across the country with the assurance of unfettered access to air time. Selective dissemination of news stories must be seen as unacceptable for as a people discernment is our strongest attribute. The souffle` that now coats the face of Peter the Pollster lends confirmation to such. It behoves this administration to extend the olive branch where the CBC is concerned as a step towards maturity at a parliamentary level.

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DLP Reality Check

Submitted by Porridgeboy

Maureen Holder (r) replaced Peter Wickham (l) as resident political scientist at the CBC when his contract was not renewed.

It has been some time since I have made a contribution to the blog, but at this time I feel compelled to put pen to paper once again so as to state some facts.Since the May 5th and most recently the September 30th a political poll was published The member base of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) seems to have gone on a campaign to assassinate the character of  pollster Peter Wickham who carried out the poll commissioned by the Nation newspaper .

I have never meet Mr Wickham but I know of  his outstanding work as a pollster in Barbados and in the Caribbean. Needless to say wherever he has done his polling, political or otherwise he has always been correct. Mr Wickham was trained by the late Pat Emmanuel and then worked under him from 1994 until his death. He carried out his first poll in 1998 and has done so successfully since in Barbados and throughout the wider Caribbean. There is no doubt that he has been successful. The Cadres poll which he directs is no fly by night firm nor is it a hit and miss guess work organisation.

Polling is a science and somehow he seems to have perfected it and with every poll he puts his professional reputation on the line. This is why I do not understand the thinking of the members and or supporters of the DLP and especially some Ministers of Government. It makes you wonder if this is the same Peter Wickham who carried out the poll which was commission by the same Nation newspaper in 2008.

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Time To Question The Political DNA Of Media Houses On Fontabelle

…what has been the role of the media, can the media be bought or can the media push one agenda rather than another, rather than present the truth by getting the facts, all the facts and let people decide. It is about our intelligensia having the intellectual honesty to either declare who they support or give an unbiased view …

Sandra Husbands

The quote above is timely because it again brings to the fore the role of local media in civil society. Is there a local body which can be held accountable by the public if there is a need to question ‘journalistic ethics’? As far as BU is aware the Barbados Association of Journalists ( BAJ) has not suggested it has the the mandate to perform such a task. Here is an example, on page 9A of the Sunday Sun June 19, 2011, in an article titled ‘The way to health reform’ published under the by-line Sandra Husbands (Guest Column). Blatant in its omission was the fact the Nation newspaper did not indicate that Sandra Husbands is the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) candidate to oppose Minister Donville Inniss in St. James South when the bell is rung for the next general election. The article robustly attacked her political foe which makes the omission all the more irresponsible.

Recently the Nation newspaper severed seasoned journalists Chris Gollop and Wade Gibbons. BU understands the two had signalled an interest to accept a ‘package’ when the Nation sent home the first set of employees, Adonijah et al.. The Nation management, it seems, took the opportunity to part company with the two in the most recent sending home of employees. We find the decision interesting because with the dearth of journalistic talent at the Nation and beyond one would have thought the management at that newspaper would have vetoed Messrs’ Gollop and Gibbons request to leave. The deed is done but it forced BU to share a suspicion we have about goings-on at the Fontebelle newspaper.

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How Will The Fruendel Stuart Government Manage Leroy Parris?

Former President of CLICO Holdings Barbados socializing with Minister of Finance on Gold Cup Day at the Garrison Savannah

A picture is said to be worth a thousand words. BU will not ascribe any meaning to the picture which appears on the back page of the Nation newspaper today (8 March 2011), other than to suggest it smacks of insensitivity on the part of Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler. No doubt Nation reporter Gercine Carter, credited with the picture, could not believed her luck for what can be surely be described as a ‘kodak moment’.

The CLICO issue has become a concern given its implication for local and regional economies, especially at a recessionary time. We should not forget British American which is owned by CLICO parent CL Financial. CLICO and its figurehead, until recently,  in the personage of Leroy Parris has become one of the most politically charged  discussion ‘pieces’ in recent months. We are where we are because of a lethargy which the Office of Insurance and the political directorate have exercised over CLICO which spans several years. Despite the foregoing the government of the day has the responsibility to manage the CLICO problem with minimum fallout to Barbadians. Who can envy the government at this time!

Of late the concern for BU has morphed to the issue of allowing Leroy Parris to remain as Chairman of the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). BU respects Leroy Parris for what he has been able to achieve, big chip on his shoulder not withstanding. In many ways his ‘rags to riches’ story bears a parallel to that of Cyril Duprey, who was able to build  a financial empire which had Colonial Life Insurance at its foundation from a relatively humble beginning. The fact that Parris is still able to command an invitation to Sandy Lane’s Box on Gold Cup Day speaks to how he has position himself on the social ladder in Barbados.

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Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation MCTV Service Or Lack Thereof

Carlisle Best (l) Andrew Mason (r) Photo Credit: Nation

The Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) is often spared the wrath of BU. It is a media house which has been used as a political football by successive governments. The fact that  Chairman  Leroy Parris and Head of News Reudon Eversley are known political hacks support why it is an entity which is never taken seriously by some. How the CBC could have contrived to jettison the most popular cricket talk show in Barbados and possible the Caribbean Best & Mason remains a talking point around Barbados.  Cricket fans would have breathed a sigh of relief when Voice of Barbados (VoB) gave the show a leg up this week.

On the subject of cricket it remains ridiculous that CBC would take the decision to broadcast cricket featuring Barbados and the West Indies teams on a pay for view basis. Cricket is currently at its lowest ebb in the Caribbean with dwindling spectator support. How is it the management at CBC could fathom that to show cricket on a pay for view basis would be a viable undertaking? Would it not make sense to use the broadcast of first class cricket to spark interest among the young for developmental purposes? In this regard the CBC would not be entirely at fault.

BU family member Mr. Thompson also has a beef with the CBC:

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There’s A Time And A Place For EVERYTHING

Hartley Henry - DLP Political Strategist

I understand the rationale but I am not sure I agree with those who call for a removal of so-called “smut” from soca or calypsos. What really is the “smut” persons are referring to? Are we talking about sexual connotations? If so, then why pick only on the calypsonian?

Seventy per cent of the songs I hear on non-gospel stations in Barbados include some element of implicit and explicit sexual reference. Indeed, I marveled a few weeks ago in the midst of the Movado/Vybes Kartel hullabaloo, when, in banning two Jamaican artistes from coming to Barbados to sing smut, our society then authorized a radio station to send two probable teenagers to the United States to see smut. This writer has a fundamental problem with that!

I was all for the banning of the Jamaican duet because I objected philosophically to the notion that they had a role to play in helping to shape the thought processes of our youth. There are far too many role models in Barbados for me to accept that a Jamaican dance hall artist is required to point out right from wrong and lead our youths along the straight and narrow path. I also have a difficulty in these tough economic times, of our encouraging low income earners to assign hard earned resources each week to what, to my mind, is low level entertainment. I therefore supported the ban on Movado/Vybes Kartel.

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Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation Continues To Shutout The Opposition Party

Under successive government the issue of how the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) has been manipulated has always been an issue. The Bajan public has had to tolerate the constant prattle by both parties concerning whether one was being fair to the other as far as airtime goes. Of all the state enterprises the CBC is thought by BU to be one where cronyism, yardfowlism and unprofessionalism is efficiently practised. This is not to say we don’t have some dedicated employees at the CBC.

It is generally known that under the last administration and especially under the watchful eye of a particular minister, a number of individuals were given refuge at the CBC. Under the current government the Chairman is known to be the Godfather of the Prime Minister’s children and the Deputy General Manager a former Waterford schoolmate. There is also the recent appointment of DLP card carrying member Reudon Eversley as Head of News which eventually led to the resignation of long standing CBC employee Dean St. Hill.

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Prime Minister David Thompson To Meet The Press, AGAIN!

Prime Minister of Barbados Hon David Thompson

Prime Minister of Barbados Hon David Thompson

A feature of the current David Thompson administration after just over one year in office has been the frequency with which the Prime Minister has made himself available to the Barbados media to answer questions. Compared to the number of press conferences which former Prime Minister Owen Arthur held during his 14 year tenure, Thompson must be on course for some kind of record.

Based on the report posted on the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) website Barbadians can look forward to a press conference with a twist. Members of the general public have been invited to participate. We are not sure what is the criteria for participation but we can only hope that it was random and or political and NGOs were fairly invited to participate.

Although we are forced to give kudos to the Prime Minister for winning the prize for being very accessible to the media, and he has delivered himself well, it has been done against a predictable performance from our media practitioners. We are hopeful that tomorrow we will see an improved performance from them. The honeymoon period is over and although the prevailing tough economic times may still generate some goodwill for the Prime Minister the people want to hear concrete proposals on how the government intends to confront the challenges facing our small country. Issues to deal with the economy and employment – maintaining competitiveness in tourism, protection in the offshore services, food security and IMMIGRATION policies among others.

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CBC And VOB Battle For Top Talk Show Slot In The Afternoon

Vic Fernandes - CEO Starcom Network

Vic Fernandes - CEO Starcom Network

The Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC)  decision to change the radio programming by expanding the talk segment appears to have gone down well. The introduction of the controversial neoliberal Peter Wickham as a moderator will boost ratings for that reason alone!

We also observe that the CBC was able to entice Marsha Hinds-Layne from Voice of Barbados (VOB) as well. We have become accustomed to the movement of personnel between CBC and VOB over the years and the competition in talk radio should hopefully make for better radio. We have to admit that we are not surprised at the move by Marsha. She appeared to be frustrated in recent months working under the heavy hand of VOB Talk Show Czar Michael Browne. We shouldn’t blame Browne, he is obviously acting under instructions from CEO Vic Fernandes. It is about saving the station money, to hell with standing up to frivolous suits to protect the honour of the Fourth Estate.

Lars G.O. Söderström Lars G.O. Söderström - CEO CBC

Lars G.O. Söderström Lars G.O. Söderström - CEO CBC

Peter Wickham’s departure has come as more of a surprise. After being treated like a step child by the Nation newspaper in the period leading up to the last general election, VOB was steadfast in their support for Wickham. He has admitted this publicly. We can only surmise that Wickham believes working for one year at VOB in the post election period should be enough to reward that loyalty!

A bit of advice to Lars who has been going about his work quietly at the CBC. You don’t need Wickham on the air for three days, he will become boring after awhile. Why not team-up the hugely popular Tony “Admiral’ Nelson and Larry Mayers to cover the topics of Entertainment/Culture/Sports on Wednesdays?  That”s the finish you need!

On the subject of talk shows. Continue reading

The Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation In The News

The new General Manager of the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation assumed duties Wednesday morning at its Pine headquarters. Lars Soderstrom was met on arrival by CBC Chairman Leroy Parris and Executive Director David Wright and then was introduced to the senior managers in the Corporation's boardroom - Source:Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation 30/07/2008

The Swede Lars G.O. Söderström is reporting on his Website that he has been the General Manager of the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) for the last three months. We try to keep on top of the news which affect Barbados but we have to confess we missed this announcement. As always the BU household thanks the BU family member for drawing this matter to our attention. We have to admit though that the Swede’s resume is impressive, on paper! Continue reading