The Changing Dynamics

The author’s name withheld at the discretion of the Blogmaster – David

Man makes plans not knowing the plans God has already made or how he will bring his plans to pass. Six things have occurred recently in Barbados that may change the path of our trajectory.

With the deadline for the Trident ID being April 1st there has been an increase in anxiety in the general population.

With a background in gun violence during the past decade, suddenly, the gangs have made a truce and all the deaths by gun fire have stopped.

Then a week ago, some of the former wards of the Girl’s Industrial School won their case and the wandering laws under which they were institutionalized were deemed unconstitutional and struck off the law books.

The very next day, the country learnt that the government had passed the Barbados Identification Act two years earlier in 2021 to restrict freedoms and the ability to vote by citizens. In essence, it appears as though the wandering laws had been replaced by a plantation pass (Trident ID card) proving that plantation slavery is alive and well in Barbados.

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Politicians Must Stop Fraternizing with Underworld Characters

In much the same way successive governments have struggled to implement a ‘fit for purpose’ economic strategy- so too have successive Attorney Generals and Commissioners of Police failed to effectively stop violent crime. 

It is accepted that an important strand to defining good leadership is the ‘ability to organize in an effective and efficient manner’. It has become evident after years of a business as usual approach by the hierarchy of the police and government that the two key have surrendered to serving narrow interest. 

During the last decade there was an underground buzz about questionable characters like Bounty Killer courted by ministers in government. On the 2018 campaign trail there is the dramatic video of Mia Mottley in the company of questionable characters as well.

Mia Mottley in the company of…
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What are we doing about importation of drugs, guns and violent crime?

BU Murder Tracker

Another three weeks to finish 2022 and the murder on the weekend pushes the year to date recorded number of murders to 41 which equals 2020. The state of violent crime in Barbados in recent years brings the 48 murders recorded in 2019 into play. Of deep concern to the blogmaster is the inability of the leadership in the country to effectively address the problem.

Last week the blogmaster read about 140 murders recorded by The Bahamas and it is no secret Jamaica has been declaring state of emergencies as a measure to arrest the murder rate for over 50 years. The outlook does not look good for Barbados that we will be able to reduce the murder rate using regional trending as the basis of conclusion.

The scourge of drugs is generally accepted as feeding criminal activity in Barbados – specifically gun crime. Further, we have the untouchables operating in the shadows of society who pass as upright citizens responsible for financing the importation of drugs and guns. The blogmaster is sure, very sure there is collusion between various actors in the first, second and third sectors of Barbados. For some reason a video of then Opposition Leader Mia Mottley posing with certain characters come to mind. What are we doing?

We (the people) must speak up.

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Course Correction Urgently Needed

BU Murder Tracker

The BU Murder Tracker confirms violent; gun crime has become endemic in our tiny society. The 40th murder occurred last Friday and it is possible with about 6 weeks to go in 2022 two more murders to surpass the 2020 number of 41 maybe reached. It is a stretch to suggest Barbados will ‘challenge’ the 48 murders recorded in 2019, the highest recorded in our history.

There is a resignation by the blogmaster that the Barbados leadership at the policy making AND non governmental level lack the nous to successfully implement effective monitoring, enforcement and social approaches to revert to a norm where a murder was big news on the island. One only has to reflect on our helplessness to stop the minibus culture that has taken root since the 80s, our inability to address concerns repeatedly raised by the Auditor General, a contentment to maintain landfills instead of executing an effective waste to management program, growing traffic congestion and lawlessness on the roads, the sloth to wean the country from fossil fuel consumption AND last but not least our burgeoning court system.

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Guns and More Guns – Murder Statistics January to October 2022

Acting Commissioner of Police Erwin Boyce

The young and the reckless are having access to guns at an “unprecedented” level, with police admitting they have “not yet touched the surface” on the issue.

Attributed to Assistant Commissioner of Police Erwin Boyce
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Independence Time – A Time to Reflect on the Role of Prime Minister

The recent Cabinet shuffle by Prime Minister Mia Mottley has caused tongues of political pundits to wag. The Cabinet changes came a few months into a second term after an early general election called in January 2021.

Prime Minister Mottley under our system of government practiced has the authority to appoint and disappoint regarding the composition of Cabinet and there must be good reasons in her mind for the changes. She has loudly signalled to the public her confidence in beleaguered Minister of Education Kay McConney and to a lesser extent Minister of Tourism Senator Lisa Cummins who was transferred to Energy and Business Development, International Business and Trade. Of interest is the fact Cummins has not had to face the electorate. We have also seen the elevation of Corey Layne to Minister of State in the Attorney General’s office for responsibility for crime prevention.

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Failing Recurring Crime Fighting Tactics

Barbados is currently experiencing another crime wave and to be expected it is being politicized which is part of the problem. How does the crime problem get fixed if family members and friends protect the criminals? Same people who were responsible for giving birth to the very monsters terrorizing the country?

This is an oversimplification of the problem to make a bigger point – observations suggest traditional tactics supported by a slow justice system and ‘not fit for purpose laws’ are being used to tackle the crime challenge. Sensible people know the approach being undertaken by authorities will NOT arrest the problem.

From an enforcement angle BOLD measures have to be taken to send messages to the criminal element of a zero tolerance to crime, especially gun crime.

On the other side of the issue, parents and guardians have to also be held accountable. Many in our neck of the woods will not condone Rodrigo Duterte’s methods, it is bitter but it works based on Philippine’s crime index. The time has come and gone for creative crime fighting solutions to be implemented albeit Barbados’ once pristine reputation ican be found in the toilet.


The following comment was posted by BU family member Artax to the Number of Murders On-track to Surpass 2021 blog.

Over the years, we’ve been having discussions on BU about the crime situation in Barbados.
And, there will obviously be attempts by some persons to politicize the situation.

I agree with AG Marshall “that the recent spate of killings resulted from gunmen in specific “groups” targeting each other,”…… and not “gangs,” as Trisha Tannis is suggesting.
Marshall would’ve obviously made his observations based on certain intelligence.

However, as I mentioned in an October 25th, 2020 12:28 PM contribution to another ‘crime thread,’…… “if one examines the gun crimes carefully, it is evident they were on the rise since 2014 and a gradual increase was expected.”

On November 11th, 2015, an ‘Updated Homicide Study’ by the Criminal Justice Research and Planning Unit revealed that 42% of the approximately 140 homicides recorded between 2010 and 2014, were as a result of guns…… ‘a trend observed as far back as 1992, and which continued to be the most common method used today.’

Evidence suggests that several persons who died as a result of shooting were not involved in ‘gangs,’ but died as a result of retaliation or revenge, petty ‘beefs’ involving women, drugs money, robberies etc.

For example, November 29th, 2014, 31 year old Ricardo Francois and other men were at bar in Danesbury, Black Rock, when some men got out of a car and started shooting.
Francois was found dead behind the shop, while four other individuals were injured…… one of whom was the son of Ricardo ‘Rick’ Bryan.
On September 1st, 2016, Ricardo ‘Rick’ Bryan, 46, of Black Rock, St Michael, was shot multiple times by three men as he exited his vehicle, outside the Lucky Horseshoe Saloon & Steakhouse in Warrens, St Michael.

Forty-four (44) year-old Jerome Oneal ‘Wild Geese’ Bovell of Spring Garden, Black Rock, St. Michael, was shot and killed in Goddings Road, St Stephen’s Hill, Black Rock, St Michael, on June 28th, 2017.
It is alleged Bovell was a ‘hit man’ and responsible for the death of Stephen Leonard Agard, 47 years of #10 Valley, St. George, who, on June 10th, 2017, was shot multiple times while standing outside his vehicle, which was parked on the compound of the old KFC building in Black Rock.

I’m sure everyone remembered when a man walked into Sheraton Center Mall, shot and killed 33 year old Damien Trotman, on March 22nd, 2019.

Another fact is, there are ‘hit men’ in Barbados. Men who are willing to kill anyone for cash or drugs.

Information and statistics about crime in Barbados is available to the public, enabling anyone desirous of having a rational discussion on the issue, to do so.


Number of Murders On-track to Surpass 2021

The following was submitted by Amit from The number of murders increased from 26 to 28 since the submission – Blogmaster


Richard Ricardo Jordan, 51, charged with the July murder of 86-year-old Gloria Leacock (Image Source: Barbados Today)

There have been at least 26 murders between January and August 2022. The steps involved in the following analysis are similar to my 2020 analysis.

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Barbados Murder Statistics January to July 2022

Submitted by Amit Uttamchandani

There have been at least 18 murders for the year so far. The data presented below covers January to July 2022. The steps involved in this analysis are similar to my 2020 analysis.

Table 1 – Murders in Barbados January to July 2022

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How Many More Must Die…We Are to Blame

The reaction by Barbadians to two more murders on the weekend evoked a predictable response – the AG should resign, what has gone wrong with our young people blah blah blah. The confirmation from the Barbados Police Service one of the men murdered was out on bail for 3 separate murders and the other well known to the ‘system’ added to the tongue wagging. The defense lawyers will argue a key tenet of jurisprudence is the presumption of innocence.

Two important considerations that are always consumed by predictable narratives at this time are parental delinquency and rehabilitation of incarcerated citizens . From where the blogmaster is perched there are no adequate mechanisms to support the two concerns which are at the root of what is causing young men and an increasing number of girls to fall through the cracks. The result is an unacceptable rate of recidivism. If there is a breakdown in the home and family unit, and the problem is made more acute by a system that pays lip service to rehabilitation of victims then society must take blame. A disproportionate focus on enforcement – which is important – will not move the needle to prevent crime in Barbados. A dysfunctional society will always be the root of the problem.

Barbados Murder Statistics 2017 to 2022

Attorney General Dale Marshall (Image Source:

The recent surge in gun play in Barbados has been featured prominently in the media over the last few days (see hereherehereherehereherehere and here). 

On July 8, the Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, The Honourable Dale Marshall, addressed this, and related matters, during a press conference (see here). During the presser, the AG also shared some statistics relating to murders and firearms between 2017 and present day:

“In 2017, of those 30 murders, 16 have been solved so far. In 2018, of the 28 murders, 19 have been solved, that 19 amounts to 68 per cent. In 2019, 27 of the 48 murders reported were solved; that’s 56 per cent. Of the 41 murders committed in 2020, 26 or 63 per cent have been solved [and] in 2021, 23 or 72 per cent of the 32 murders were solved. And for this year, of the 17 murders thus far, 10 have been cleared up and some of those have only happened in the last few weeks,” the Attorney General disclosed. 

Source: Barbados Government Information Service

As a Barbadian citizen and resident, the topic of crime and violence (especially gun related) is of great importance and a worry to me. However, the majority – if not all of my posts – rarely deal with my personal views and opinions. As a data analyst on the other hand, I try to focus on what is being reported (in terms of facts, figures, et cetera), and collecting, compiling and analyzing said data and information. I was therefore excited when the AG shared some statistics which I will now look at below.

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Crime and Violence Expose Leadership Vacuum

It has been a period of uncomfortable crime and violence that has engulfed Barbados. To be expected there is finger pointing, gnashing of teeth and frustration by the public directed at the authorities. There is resignation that lawlessness has become an entrenched behaviour and the relatively quiet and orderly society that characterised Barbados society in days of yore has gone the way of the dodo.

In 2009 the blogmaster posted a number of blogs around the theme weeds were starting to shoot up on our well manicured lawns. Many commenters suggested the blogmaster was being an alarmist. In fact the same observation was levelled when BU highlighted our dysfunctional court system in the series Tales from the Courts. Sadly our leaders with the citizenry complicit because of apathy and cynicism has led to the current state of things. 

…the deviance must be tackled in the homes but guess what, we have many children who don’t live in homes. This means the government by proxy must play the role as step-father, or stepmother for that matter…

Barbados Underground (2010)

The breakdown and decline in the social fabric of Barbados society did not start ‘yesterday’. The blogmaster again recalls the hullabaloo when a decision was taken to bring Vybz Kartel and Movado to Barbados by the Barbados Youth Action Program (an organisation affiliated to government) under the chairmanship of then Minister Hamilton Lashley. It bears reminding Lashley is known as a social practitioner par excellence. These were two dancehall artists known for smutty lyrics and behaviour. Minister Ronald Jones at the time to his credit expressed displeasure at the staging of the show. Then there was the public disagreement between then Commissioner Dottin and his deputy Bertie Hinds about staging the show. This is an example to illustrate how key leaders in our small society were unable to see the obvious, a government affiliate promoting a Vybz Kartel Movado show at a time when deviant behaviour, especially by our youth, was a concerned.

The other example of double standards fast tracking the decline of the society was the so called Trojan Riddim saga – How de Yutes Get so?, a group of artists known in the music underground for pushing smutty and anti social lyrics released a video to YouTube which provoked Prime Minister Mia Mottley to demand the artists remove it. The artists ignored Mottley, however, a few weeks many of the artists were included in Barbados Labour Party (BLP) sponsored activities. Soon after government continues to contract artists who were involved, Lil Rick, Peter Ram et al.

The examples cited are representative what will inevitably occur if there is a lack of leadership. It will be supplanted by the prevailing subculture. Is it too late to stem the anti social behaviour enveloping the global space? Probably yes although the blogmaster being the eternal optimist will never say never.

Who will show us the way to the truth and the light?

George Bennett Drug Case: The Good Guys are the Bad Guys

The arrest of George Bennett, a former high ranking member of the Police Drug Squad now a practising lawyer once again confirms the whispers and rum shop talk. Although the traditional media delights in emblazoning the mugs of ‘little black boys’ on the front and court pages caught pushing drugs, commonsense supports a view that prominent, respected citizens are important links in the supply and distribution chain.

George Bennett is charged with possession, trafficking and intent to supply 253 kilograms of cannabis with a street value of 2 million, he appeared in the number 4 Supreme Court this week to apply for bail. Despite the bench strength of Bennett’s defence team which consisted of Andrew Pilgrim QC and Arthur Holder, bail was denied.

The blogmaster gives weight to the charge brought by the Royal Barbados Police Force considering the contraband was reportedly found at Bennett’s residence. His lawyers must be working overtime to discover a ‘technicality’ to earn a favourable ruling. Bennett’s relationship with the drug world probably started when he was a policeman and greed forced him to take the wrong path. The blogmaster is sure Bennett represents the ‘tip of the iceberg’. Then again there is the presumption of innocence, stop it!

The police force continues to report crime levels down although there is growing concern about the high murder rate in recent years. The truth is- in a small society a qualitative assessment must carry greater value compared to data driven conclusions. Thirteen murders for the year in tiny Barbados will impact the quality of our society more than if it were a bigger country. The level of lawlessness being witnessed in Barbados is symptomatic of a bigger problem of which members of law enforcement AND officers of the court are inextricably a part. The time has long passed to arrest the rot.

For every Bennett there are a few more to be found in Customs Department, Police Force, Immigration Department – you get the drift. To be fair to Commissioner Tyrone Griffith, he has mentioned repeatedly concerns about the quality of policing at ports of entry. We are fighting against wickedness in high places.

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against a spiritual wickedness in high places.

Ephesians 6:12 KJV

The blogmaster hesitates to recommend a Rodrigo Duterte approach to arresting crime in Barbados, our docile disposition as a people and fit and proper system of governance would not permit it. However, a radical approach is always the preferred option if material change is the objective. Based on what is before us i.e. a former high ranking policeman now lawyer found with 253 kilos of cannabis at his home should be enough to support a conclusion the good guys are the bad guys.

It is important the process to recruit the next Commissioner of police to replace an invisible Tyrone Griffith is judiciously processed. The unfortunate predicament Barbados finds itself stems from the fact our decision makers are part of the problem.

The Long Road from Perdition – YOU, We and Crime

Barbadians are rightly concerned about a rise in violent crime, specifically with guns. Those in charge see it as a duty to paper over concerns because it is about maintaining calm in the society. Overall crime statistics may be trending satisfactorily for those whose job description should depend BUT there is is rising concern by the public about violent crime, specifically gun crime. A significant rise in the number of murders since 2018 has caused tongues to wag.

There are some issues we have to regard of national importance and work together to solve. While working together there must be leadership at every level to ensure the change desired is achieved. Do we have the right leaders in place as the Attorney General, Commissioner of Police, Chief Justice, Director of Public Prosecutions, Director of Welfare department, Director of Probation department, Dodds, GIS, Minister of Education – the list is not exhaustive. This is on the enforcement and rehabilitation side of the equation to curb acts of crime; recidivism.

There is more we are obligated to do. A chain is as strong as the weakest link. Each link represents YOU, YOU and YOU. We see every day the wheelies, running traffic lights, littering the environment, flouting of government’s financial rules, acceptance of monies from those in the shadows to the campaigns of politicians and so on. We know this, we see it , we condone it by turning a blind eye, then we complain.

Barbadians are happy to cede the awesome civic responsibility to politicians- we are delinquent as parents, teachers, policemen AND politicians and expect the police force, government and said other delinquent players to play clean-up. There is no doubt citizens expect if laws are broken the authorities must ensure justice is meted out swiftly. What we want as well is for deviant and dysfunctional behaviour that leads to increase crime and specifically gun crime to be arrested as well. We have to hold agencies responsible- this includes GOVERNMENT- for enforcement ACCOUNTABLE. We have to hold ourselves accountable in order to be guardians of our fate.

In much the same way garrison behaviour is a way of life in some neighbouring islands, we are seeing a similar trend of behaviour in Barbados with violent crime centred in depressed communities. In the lead in to the 2018 general election concern was expressed by some members of the public about then Opposition Leader Mia Mottley seen in the presence of questionable characters on the campaign trail. Again some questioned why questionable characters were invited to the opening of parliament. It has become too blatant for many although it is known that the relationship between the criminal element and public officials have been blurred for a long time. The chickens are coming home to roost. We have reached the tipping point. There is no moral leadership.

Has the Prime Minister addressed this video? Our leaders must not validate wrongdoing by their behaviour.

The Barbados we romanticize is no more. Like community spread of infection caused by the COVID 19 virus, so too we have community spread caused by crime. It is why the vacuous calls by politicians for citizens to give up the bad boys and girls will yield little if any positive results. The underworld economy is well managed and families and communities depend on the economic activities attached to the arrangement. In the same way extra income is derived from kitchen gardens, baking and other type activities so too is criminal activity for too many.

The recent murder of a police officer by a band of robbers in the North of the island is an example of today’s problem. The horse has bolted and it will require a long term commitment to solving the problem at every level of our small society. 

Will the real leaders raised wunna hands – that means YOU, YOU and YOU.

Death + Murder = Case of DIMINISHING Return on ROE

One of the many discussion points COVID 19 pandemic has generated is the ‘Covid 19 dashboard’. The ‘dashboard’ highlights a running number of daily, cumulative infections, active cases, number of people vaccinated, DEATHS and other information public health officials deem to be pertinent. Last evening the recent ‘dashboard’ showed the number of deaths attributed to COVID 19 had surpassed 42 for 2020 – see BU’s Murder Tracker.

An unwelcome characteristic demonstrated by Barbadians in recent years is a numbness shown to death. In 2019 the number of murders was an unprecedented 49. It was not that long ago Barbadians expressed horror at a single unnatural death on the island. The blogmaster anticipates the counter perspective will be that per thousand- Barbados despite the high number of reported murders in the last 2 years- is removed from several other countries in the region. Why then is the blogmaster consumed by an overwhelming sense of despair at the current situation? A glimmer of hope- we have passed the first quarter of 2021 with a single murder reported. Will the trend continue? The blogmaster is not optimistic.

The government is understandably consumed by the economic and COVID 19 challenges of the day. However, we must not forget the social issues we have to also manage that determine the quality of society we aspire to maintain. Although Barbados’ human development index continues to be relatively well reported, it has fallen from high of the 1990s.

An overdue discussion in the country is the causal factors driving the apathetic attitude to the rising number of murders and death in general.

There is also the sub story revealed by rising COVID 19 deaths that confirms the vulnerability of individuals afflicted with comorbidities in Barbados. It is no secret Barbados has earned the label NCD Capital of the world. It is no secret the COVID 19 virus has been unkind to this group. PAHO reports that people with underlying health problems, such as cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer have a higher risk of severe COVID 19 disease and are more likely to die.

Although fighting the pandemic has been elevated to number one priority health issue by the global community, the enduring issue for Barbados of the high incidence of NCDs must not see this issue being subsumed and ‘deprioritized’ by the pandemic. Should the health authorities be using the opportunity to coopt simultaneous approaches to fight both health issues?

The blogmaster wants to see a greater proactive and holistic approach to managing the people’s business by government and NGO stakeholders. There is a reason funding for education is consistently in the top two allocations of the national budget. The high incidence of NCDs in Barbados and the apathy to murder and death suggest we must see a greater rate of return on education (ROE). This dysfunctional behaviour if allowed to be unrestrained does not bode well for a future Barbados.

Covid 19 Dashboard

Police Surrender to Wheelie Motorcyclists

The following video may suggest many things to different people. What is suggests to the blogmaster is a lawlessness and indiscipline that is getting close to mainstream behaviour. A situation where authorities seem helpless in the eyes of the public to curb the rot. A situation where a sub element in society has taken civil society hostage. In fact this unattended lawlessness on our roads is channelling what now obtains in the PSV sector. First we ignored it, then we paid lip service to it and now the behaviour has ‘metastasize’ to all segments of society. Have we observed how ordinary motorist are ‘bursing’ through amber and red traffic lights? Parking on side walks and other unauthorized areas? Using cellphones without handsfree etc?

Source: Nation

BU family member John A posted the following eyewitness account of the unbelievable lawlessness we are witnessing on our roads on a daily basis. This coupled with the fact police and government appear feckless.

David I am so happy you showed that video as I saw the idiots myself on Sunday, so let me share what happened.

I was in a line of traffic moving slowly coming into Warrens from the south coast on the highway around 5pm.

When I finally got to Warrens round about it was these idiots who were the problem. They were riding between the Warrens roundabout and the Shopsmart roundabout taking up both lanes of traffic. Bikes on only back wheels, quads sliding from side to side and no cars could pass them. When they got to the Cost-U-Less roundabout they then went back to Warrens. I saw at least 30 of them in Warrens, but also passed another 20 or so on the side of the road by Kooyman Hardware store.

My point is what de ass are the police doing about this? Why must joggers and others using the road be abused by a handful of idiots every Sunday?

I also noticed in the video when they saw the police vehicles they scattered like flies. No doubt none have insurance and few may even have a bike license. This problem has been going on for months on a Sunday, so why has it not been dealt with? They are certain parts of the ABC highway that have rock faces on both sides, hence no escape. Why hasn’t a trap been set for them in such areas?

It is a disgrace that the authorities are so inept when it comes to this issue. It is only a matter of time before one of these idiots kills either a jogger or someone on the road side.

Dam well get up and deal with it!

This island seems to have lost all control over enforcement of law and the message these idiots are sending to others is WE CAN DO WHAT WE WANT AND NO ONE CAN TOUCH US.

BU Commenter John A

Murder Statistics 2020

Data/information collated/prepared by

There were at least 42 murders in Barbados last year. Under normal circumstances, I publish murder stats on a monthly basis (I have data going back to 2017). However, COVID-19 analysis kept me busy for most of last year, and I quickly lost track of 2020 murders. This post remedies that and looks at all of 2020 in one article.

My data analysis consisted of five steps:

  1. Defining the question (or problem in this case) – The lack of detailed publicly available information on violent crime – murders in particular – in Barbados. This step also incudes identifying data sources.
  2. Collecting the data – This is probably the least exciting part of data analysis. For the murder statistics related to Barbados, this usually involves me monitoring the news (The Nation, Barbados Today, Loop Barbados, et cetera) for reports of murders. Observations are then entered into an Excel sheet under several headings (Name, Age, Address, Parish, et cetera). For 2020, I contracted out this step.
  3. Cleaning the data – This involved removing errors as well as unwanted data, filling in missing data, and bringing structure to the data (i.e., new or modifications to existing columns, typos, formatting, et cetera). This is where I also decided which records to count as part of the data analysis and which to disregard. This step is probably the most time consuming.
Read more HERE.

Figure 1: Barbados Murder Heatmap 2020 (click to enlarge).

Arresting Crime @Source

In the Friday Nation newspaper of October 23, 2020 Commissioner of Police Tyrone Griffith AGAIN revealed to the public that “guns are still coming”. His comment comes in response to public concerns about gun crime. The COP remains adamant that although there has been a tightening of the security at the Barbados Port, unfortunately it has not arrested the problem. The blogmaster understands that a system is only as good as the integrity of the operators of said system. We also have other ports of entry where the security is questionable and there is the additional headache that Barbados is an island with many many areas that allow those willing to take the risk to land contraband. This is an enforcement issue BUT there is the systemic issue we have also failed as a society to even scratch the service..

Listen to the following exchange between Social Scientist Corey Layne and Community Practitioner and Veteran Journalist David Ellis from 4 minutes into the clip.

Veteran journalist David Ellis and Social Scientist Corey Layne



What About Crime Stupid II – Rest in Peace, Live in Peace

Submitted by Kammie Holder

I am sad and why I am sad for the nut man has been killed by the gun of yet another thug. This is a young man who I have known for over 40 years, hard-working, a family man who was very ambitious and toiled everyday to provide bread for his two kids.

What is more disheartening is that the gun is killing more than Covid and the authorities seem totally incapable of disinfecting our society of these callous thugs. Sometimes the end must justify the means, and sometimes we must temporarily give up our freedoms for the greater good of our society.

Bigger guns for law enforcement and harsher penalties will not deter a mindless thug who has no value for life from taking the life of another. These thugs need to be flushed out of every nook and cranny, for the casual callousness and bravado exhibited is worrying.

May I suggest, better usage of the eavesdropping technology to detect the source of these guns rather than tapping the phones of harmless mouth giants makes better sense. Are we seeing a failure in some specific area of intelligence gathering that needs plugging for we do not manufacture guns in Barbados. Why do we have to always wait until it really hits home to get real action on crime.

Common sense tells me our crime fighting measures are failing and needs new brains on board, innovative strategies, public consultations and ideas from public. The police may think they have a noosphere of knowledge on crime fighting but non of us are equipped with a catholicon for crime.


The time is right for community policing to embrace a volunteer force similar to the US and UK model where persons up to age 60 are trained and work alongside regular police officers. Perhaps, some will arrogantly as usual knock another idea without further exploration. We are not talking about the ill treated, disrespected special constable arm, we are speaking to a properly equipped new unit with its own chief.

Covid mitigation measures perhaps will cost us more than a well established auxiliary police force. Can we ignore or quantify the cost of not acting? Decreased investor confidence, travel advisories, increased healthcare, increased critical care cost and decrease tourist arrival will all lead to less FX for Remy hair and Hennessey imports.

Crime is everybody’s problem and who better to engage to help mitigate spiralling crime other than well vetted citizens among the masses.

Rest In Peace Randy, will be the retort of many but we must also Live In Peace.

What About CRIME Stupid

This morning the blogmaster entered the local newsfeed from traditional media to be swamped with the predictable-news about the selection of General Secretary of the Barbados Workers Union (BWU) Toni More to represent the BLP in St. George North in the upcoming by-election. The proposal by the government to rename the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill in Owen Arthur’s name. The pros and cons of going republic and others. Some if us do not forget that the traditional media has a weighty responsibly to report news as it happens AND to present issues of the day to the general public. A professional and educated cadre of journalists has the awesome power to influence the citizenry.

However, one of the biggest threats to a stable society is rising CRIME, in the case of tiny Barbados; increasing gun violence. Both political parties have been targeted in the fight against crime and today the country is reaping the whirl wind. Successive governments AND private sector have not harmonized policies to sustain the economic well being of the country to address the economic and social needs of Barbadians, especially our young people. Many Barbadian families have not managed households well enough to inculcate wholesome values because they lack meaningful support.

The late Randy “Nutman” Selman

In recent hours the blogmaster updated the Murder Tracker in the sidebar to 33 to include the body found last week on the rocks at the Animal Flower Cave and last night the random killing of a young man know as ‘Nutman’. Barbadian pedestrians and motorists should recall the mannerly young man who sold nuts at the junction of Pine Road. From all reports he happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.

The effect of crime on working class neighbourhoods like the Pine, Silver Hill and others must be given priority by the society. The consistent high unemployment in working class neighbourhoods in Barbados because of a lack of economic opportunity has created an underclass. Yesterday members of the BU intelligentsia reiterated a call to gentrify Bridgetown. We need similar calls to implement programs to uplift our working class neighbourhoods; improve the economic opportunities, improve the housing, eliminate the crime bosses who take advantage of this vulnerable class of society. Recently Zack Robert Nadur, an upper class 74 year old man was arrested and charged with possession of 50 rounds of .32 ammunition at his residence without a licence. We need to see more!

Shopkeeper Shirley Lynch is pleading for help as she watches her livelihood fall victim to crime. The pensioner has been operating a shop in Golden Rock, The Pine, St Michael, since 1994. (Video by Sandy Pitt)#MeAndMyNation#YourNewsYourTimeYourWay#Barbados#LoveMyNation

The Nation Barbados

Just last month the blogmaster read the impassioned cry from Shirley Lynch (quoted above) who operates a village shop in the area where ‘Nutman’ was reported to be liming outside his home last night. So many Barbadians including our politicians live in an alternate universe. There must be a fit for purpose Crime and Social Plan to arrest what is playing out at Golden Rock the Pine and similar working class neighbourhoods across Barbados. The social and economic cost is rising a la inner city Chicago. The time has come for Barbadians to reject the usual platitudes from the police, politicians, pretend social practitioners and NGOs et al. We allocate millions of dollars to implement trite projects and forget about the importance of developing meaningful social programs to assist our most vulnerable. What do we think will happen eventually if so many of our children underperform in the Barbados Secondary Schools’ Entrance Examination? What do we think will happen if our parents who need help are not supported?

Rising crime affects us all people.



Arresting Double Standards

Submitted by Kammie Holder

The attached photos were are all taken from the Nation newspaper online.

Perhaps, this may be a rare case of inferiority complex raising its head if the relaxed attitude towards the accused shown last week is used as a yardstick to juxtapose the one of Leroy Parris. Neither am I of the opinion this was a deliberate case of self hate but more of a desire to be nice to accused.

However, the question begs are double standards at play, according to position, wealth, race, or public outcry?

What message is been sent to society and international partners when accused black boys are treated with tight handcuffs and some elite are allowed to take picnic strolls?

This is something the local Black Lives Matter agitators should be keeping noise about for this smacks of inequality and institutional self hate. Did the country not see Leroy Parris a man with significant assets in handcuffs and ever so often little black boys charged with a spliff?

This is a sad day in the history of the Royal Barbados Police Force and must not only be publicly condemned but investigated. I will not hold my breath in a society that leaves everything to their god. But what do we expect from an establishment formed as a force in 1835 and still not a service in 2020. If ever we wanted evidence that our society is divided how we treat each other, we need not look any further. Such happenings undermine the good name of the Royal Barbados Police Force and can create distrust among the masses. The silence of those who champion social justice is disturbingly silent, no wonder many see the local black life movement as a farce.

We can continue to selfishly ignore and dismiss wrongs until it hit homes. Each one of us must be craftsmen of our fate and strict guardians of our heritage. Stop taking your freedoms for granted and never accept silence in the presence of inequality as an option. Perception can overwhelm facts and turn truth on its head.

Police Need to be Trained as Peace Keepers

Submitted by Steven Kaszab

Police, body of officers representing the civil authority of government. Police typically are responsible for maintaining public order and safety, enforcing the law, and preventing, detecting, and investigating criminal activities. These functions are known as policing. (Webster’s dictionary).
The definition maybe simplified, but the basis states that Police are persons of authority, armed and able to maintain public order and safety.
We have seen may cases of violence set upon Citizens and Police alike in North America.
Justified violence? Is that the important issue here? The main issue is that Our Society is filled with FEAR.  Police fear for their lives, loss of authority while Citizens Fear those who are suppose to be protecting them.
Why the FEAR?  So many reasons…
  • Armed Criminality
  • Social injustice & prejudice
  • Racism (personal & institutionalized
  • Availability of weapons
  • Supposed media availability(everyone has a video)
  • Generational Poverty & Unemployment
Fear of all kinds transforming our society into groups…cultural, social, political, economic classes, race. Even when we protest the injustices of the world we come face to face with Fear whether it be institutional ignorance, police/social  oppression, societal exclusion’s.
Have you ever been in a predominately poverty stricken community walking at night, see three youths coming towards you on side walk? Hoodies in the dark. What to do. Fear of the possible.
A couple driving a premier vehicle  in an exclusive neighborhood are stopped. If they were white they’d still be driving, but no. Police check. Why?  Fear of the possible.
Lets get rid of this fear. Lets change how Police and Policing are viewed. No longer should police be viewed as those to be feared.
                                             Policing should be viewed as PEACE KEEPING
Police Keepers do what? Stand between opposing forces to negotiate and stop violence.
I experienced an event in New York City long ago. We were on a bus when two officers came aboard. A young man stood up and pointed his fire arm at them. What did they do? Have a shootout? No. One officer stepped back down the stairs while the other spoke to the young man. We were all involved in this conversation. The officer knew how to de escalate  the situation. The young man went down the stairs, sitting on a bench with an officers while the other stood behind him. Peace Keepers talk, discuss, influence situational experiences. As a clergyman I to learnt the power of intelligent gabbing. Explain the pros and cons of existing or future events. Have a gun, what can happen to you or others if that gun is used.
TALK-Walk in Their Shoes – Respond
Peace Keepers find solutions to problems. They often hash out political-Personal issues between individuals and groups. Policing has become a multi tasking career. Part police, social worker and diplomat. Remember the Police are agents of the justice system but they do not punish. The Courts decide what is fair and just. The Police learn and proclaim Laws of the land. Therefore if someone has been perceived to break a law, the police respond in an intelligent controlled manner. Most times violence is not needed. If a law breaker does not fear the police, knowing they will be going to court where they’d be judged violence can be avoided. Do the Police know this? Is every Citizen in Our Land viewed as innocent or possibly guilty. Do the Police Fear Us(the Citizenry) so much that weapons in hand have become habitual?
Policing needs to become Community Centered. Police and our citizens need to learn what it is like to live in one another’s shoes. I lived in the Bronx of @ a year. White, Black, Hispanic, Asian…we all lived below the poverty line, among those who stood outside of the American experience. Low income, addiction, low prospects. Yet the communities in the Bronx were centers of helpful, charitable Community also. Respect given and taken by all. The police lived in the community. They knew the Fears, Joys and Expectations of their neighbors and responded with open hands & hearts. Shit happened, yes, but there was more good then bad.
We need to know each other, seeing our neighbors with new eyes. The prejudices of the past and present can be understood and dealt with intelligently. A Peace Keeper is possibly the most flexible of our armed forces. Thrown into every possible situation they need to adapt and respond in a constructive manner. So too Our Police. Pulling a weapon is a last resort. A Good person standing in their uniform, ready to serve their neighbor should be all that’s needed. Armed yes. There are situation that require the authority of a weapon, But the power of intelligent thoughts can be voiced, transforming a situation of potential violence into a act of peaceful good.
Our Police need to be trained as peace keepers. The days of turning off body cams, taking a hooligan down town for a beating, hassling someone cause they are in a car, neighborhood not symbolic of their demographic Must end.
Eric Cartman, a character of South Park bark’s these words  “Respect My Authority”.
That is what is happening throughout North America. Police FEAR loss of their authority. Every ones seemingly questioning that authority on social media, videos and the media. I guess what I am saying is Authority is not as powerful as Respect. Found in the same statement, both words actually compliment each other. Respect My Authority. Police are not in themselves authority, but represent Authority. Who gives them this authority? We do. It is not Them and Us. It is US. WE are the authority they represent.
As God says “I Am”  we the people should proclaim to all RESPECT OUR AUTHORITY. Who will represent us in the world?  The Peace Keepers of society, our neighbor’s “THE POLICE”.

‘Contagion’ Effect – 43 Murders in TnT

Amit befitting the name of his website has expanded monitoring of key events  to neighbouring Trinidad and Tobago. This is important surveillance for Barbados given Trinidad’s nexus to Barbados.

David, blogmaster

There have been at least 43 murders in Trinidad for the month of January. The data presented below was collected and compiled from the online editions of the following news sites: The Guardian, LoopTT, Express and Newsday. During the month of January, these websites were checked periodically and reports of murders were recorded.

Trinidad Murders January 2020
Heat Map of Murders in Trinidad – January 2020


Read full details

Shooting Advisory – A Time to ACT

The blogmaster thought long and hard about posting the following incident which occurred on the weekend at the Charles Rowe Bridge gas station in St. George. In a nutshell two youngsters got into an argument inside the gas station and the video captures the the decision to resolve.

Again the shooting incidents in recent months by our young men expose our society on many fronts. As a society we have failed to inculcate the right values in some of our young people. Whatever the reason we can theorize, we have reached the tipping point. A short term strategy must be put in place to deal with the situation. Obviously the youngsters have no regard for lives. No regard for collateral damage caused by an ability to shoot straight. No capacity to exercise reasonableness.

The blogmaster with reluctance recommends uncompromising enforcement measures. The government MUST impose an emergency plan to arrest increasing gun violence on the island. The youngsters committing these crimes have passed the point of no return, fire power must be met with fire power. The namby pamby approach currently be adopted will not work.

As a society we must fight back. NOW.

The bad boys must be taken out!


Fixing Crime and Criminal Justice for the Sake of OUR Children

The blogmaster thanks Tee White for sharing the Paper used to complete this blog
– David, blogmaster

In recent weeks two matters have unfolded in the Barbados courts to support the view that the time has come (past) for citizens of Barbados to sensibly discuss crime and the criminal justice. Although Barbadians have been labelled an educated people this is betrayed by the ease with which we cede our civic responsibly to the political class.

At a juncture in our history where the crime level has risen to an unprecedented level and a dysfunctional court system that threatens to implode under the weight of a burgeoning case load  – the question on the blogmaster’s mind is why are Barbadians allowing members of the political class AND surrogates to lead the conversation about crime and the justice system in Barbados. The politics we practice by design is adversarial and it therefore stands to reason a debate  about law and order matters will be acrimonious and unproductive if led by this group. We need to hear from non political players, the social scientists et al.

In a paper written by Christina Pantazis with the title Inequalities in crime and criminal justice as it pertains elsewhere the author concluded with the following:

In this paper, I have shown that the criminal justice system reproduces inequalities: certain groups of people selectively pass through the system B namely, young poorly educated males, many of whom have ethnic minority backgrounds, and who may have spent some time in care or living as homeless. The over-representation of these groups of people is the result of law enforcement procedures which serve to highlight the activities of these people, whilst simultaneously minimising the criminal actions of more powerful people and organisations.

Given the type of people who get caught in the criminal justice system, as well as the reasons for the disparity, we can see that the role of the criminal justice system is not a means for dealing with crime and dispensing justice. It is more about classifying harms B where the harms of the powerless are exaggerated, and the harms of the more powerful are minimised.

A further read reveals similar characteristics to what obtains in Barbados. It cannot be refuted that Dodds Prison and other ‘penal’ institutions are predominantly populated with people from the lower socio economic segment.  What also cannot be refuted is that the majority of those arrested are located in the lowest socio economic bracket. What also cannot be refuted is that citizens suffering with mental and related challenges are dealt with harshly in our system.

Why is our prison population not reflective of behaviours in the national population? Do we have white colour crime? The affluent do not drink and have mental events? Why are certain types of crime not vigorously pursued by the ‘system’? The ordinary Barbadian is use to saying  – we have two Barbadoses.

The question (for 10 marks) we have to answer on behalf of our children – why is there an over representation of certain people incarcerated by the system. With the upsurge in crime in Barbados and a court system under perpetual duress triggering decline now is the best time to understand and address what are factors adversely affecting law and order and creating a bias to how we operate.  The stability of our little island requires for sensible people to rationally discuss AND address the cause of the seismic shift that has occurred in the social landscape  of Barbados.

Unless we want to follow the path of a few neighbouring islands.

Link to paperInequalities in crime and criminal justice (Christina Pantazis)

Justice is Coming!

If one really wishes to know how justice is administered in a country, one does not question the policemen, the lawyers, the judges, or the protected members of the middle class. One goes to the unprotected–those, precisely, who need the law’s protection most!–and listens to their testimony.       

-James Baldwin

The crime situation affecting Barbados is a cause for concern. In 2019 Barbados registered 49 murders based on the official report. Clearly there has been a seismic shift in the social fabric of the society. The blogmaster is onboard with pressuring government and the police to efficiently enforce laws without compromise to create a culture of discipline in our little society. However, there is urgent remedial action needed to arrest the systemic matters on the opposite side of enforcement.

Recently the blogmaster as he parked the jalopy a youngster – found out he was 19 years old later in conversation – requested the opportunity to wash the vehicle. According to him, he had not eaten for the day. A conversation ensued – he attended St. George Secondary School, left in 4th Form without a single CXC. He tried to secure – unsuccessfully – a job as a gas attendant. He lived with an aunt and uncle because his parents showed no interest in his upbringing, no supervision while at school, he was left to do as he will. The result…

The blogmaster shared the story because at the root of many of our problems is the lack of parental care. A wholesome society is the aggregate of stable family units first and foremost. We live in a time where ceding our obligations to the Commissioner of Police of Attorney General is par for the course.

We need efficient enforcement of our laws by the police to ensure justice is delivered AND we need our Courts to deliver justice to respect the maxim, justice delayed is justice denied. The case load in the Barbados Courts has been rising in recent years to prompt Attorney General Dale Marshall to opine words to the effect – the system was about to crash under its weight. Successive governments have been unable to clear the backlog – even the appointment of a Chief Justice from ‘outside’ and talk about alternative dispute resolution have failed to arrest the issue.

The following article in the press was drawn to the attention of the blogmaster.

Bid to cut backlog of murder cases


Added 07 January 2020


Justice Carlisle Greaves (FILE)

All eighty-four murder accused, some with cases as old as ten years, will have their day in court this year.

In addition, with 54 matters awaiting sentencing, the new Assizes system will see the last Friday of each month dedicated to those decisions, with the intention of reducing that backlog by the end of February.

The new system was rolled out by Justice Carlisle Greaves yesterday as he joined four other judges for the historic sitting of five High Courts to hear the Criminal Assizes.

Justice Greaves, who will preside over Supreme Court No 3, joins Justices Randall Worrell who sits in Supreme Court 2, Laurie-Ann Smith-Bovell in No 4, Christopher Birch in No. 5A and Pamela Beckles who presides over Court No. 5. (HLE)

Subscribe now to our eNATION edition for the full story.

We have seen several attempts to deal with issues in the Courts. A country that aspires to respect the rights of actors living and operating therein must honour the principles of justice. We will have to wait to review later in the year.

Who Needs a Salt Bread Democracy

Submitted by Caleb Pilgrim (the title of the blogmaster inserted by the blogmaster)

Two recent cases compel attention. The first, Judge Vivienne Blake, a Jamaican jurist, among other things, imposed a sentence of 45 years hard labour in a case where a criminal defendant was convicted for slaughtering and beheading a woman in Jamaica. (Hard labour does not appear to be a stranger in the Jamaican judicial system).

The second case involved one Todd, a Barbadian defendant convicted for stealing a salt bread worth BDS 85 cents and facing up to one year in jail.

The Barbadian defendant, Todd, was apparently “well known to the court”. He, Todd, was however correct in his representation – we assume he was pro se – that it makes no sense for the Magistrate to sentence him for up to a year in jail for stealing a salt bread worth a mere BDS 85 cents. The Government, Todd argues, then has to pay BDS $100 per day to accommodate him and any other prisoner.

In addition to his “free” board and lodging, the prisoner has the advantage of spending his Christmas, presumably quality time of sorts, enjoying a sumptuous meal and other benefits. He even quarrels, righteously, from time to time, if he cannot get to eat fine food prepared and brought to him by a relative, and, inclusive of pictures, makes the local press.

Sadly, it therefore appears that the Barbadian tax payer is being held hostage to the criminal commando class. (Let us leave aside white collar crime and what the Chinese label “economic crimes”” for the moment). Clearly, the prisoner has you – the tax payer – by the balls, with your balls caught in a serious, ever tightening, unyielding, financial vise. He is like a giant boa constrictor squeezing the life out of you, while we bleat faintly like a dying sheep, with not a Samaritan in sight to rescue the hapless and beleaguered Bajan tax payer.

Kindly understand that I do not mean to be too retro. Nor do I support the extra-judicial actions of a Buterse or a Bolsonaro. But, as I have long argued hard labour (“enhanced occupational therapy”, if you will), should be readily available in any magistrate’s repertoire of solutions to the problem of increasing crime and lawlessness in Barbados.

I argue, further, that the Barbados Constitution, “the supreme law of the land”, and Art . 14 et seq, possibly contemplated such an eventuality and permits this solution.

But, instead, we grope about as if in a thick, dark London fog. Like some latter day Francis Micawber, we hope that “something will turn up”. But, nothing turns up. Rather, we continue along a slippery path, as if on our way to becoming just another banana republic, this time without any bananas.

Imagine a couple of miscreant, Bajan bandits. They successfully rob a Campus Trendz store. They then fire bomb the store, as they escape, killing six “whole” young women. At the rate of $100 per day, room and board, the figures soon run into several hundreds of thousands of dollars. After a while, the figures add up. Multiply this also by the number of guests at the Her Majesty’s Dodds.

For the citizen tax payer then, it appears all costs, no benefits.

As to the prisoners volunteered for hard labour, there are ample opportunities. They can clean up the beaches filled with Sargassum weed, as well as the litter on the highways and byways of Barbados; re-paint and/or power wash public buildings in need of repair, including hospital(s), polyclinics, schools, etc; beyond the Dodds’ farm, they can be encouraged to engage in more productive farming – growing (and eventually harvesting) yams, potatoes, beets, lettuce, carrots, cassava, vegetables, peas, produce of all varieties; they may also be encouraged to engage in dairy farming and animal husbandry. Always, under the eye of some BDF member(s) cognizant of the “fleeing felon” rule.

The convict commando, the thief, the bandit, the murderer, the burglar, the wannabe American influenced gangster, the misadvised and ill-informed do not forfeit their duty to be productive members of society and to make restitution.

Finally, I do. not mean to suggest that hard labour is the solution to all crimes committed. However, “a democracy does not have to commit suicide”. (A. Batak, former Israeli Attorney General and later President of the Israeli Supreme Court). It follows a fortiori that any government has a duty to maintain law and order. For those of us who still believe in the Rule of Law … No section of society should be immune from rigorous application, enforcement and implementation of the law. With almost 50 murders so far this year, time might well have passed for a craven, knavish response to the problems of crime and violence.

Barbados Murder Statistics November 2019

The following is the monthly report tracking murders committed on the island compiled by Amit – David, blogmaster

November 2019 saw six murders taking place across Barbados. The victims were: Temario Holder (16), Denzil Obed Scarboro (29), Ken McDonald Yearwood (39), Cecil Webb (49), Lennox Jeffneil Browne (48) and Terry Small (late 40s).

Two deaths were shooting related (Scarboro and Yearwood), while the other four were stabbing/cutlass related. Three of the six murders took place on the same day in Walker’s St. Andrew (Webb, Browne, and Small). The other three took place in St. Lucy (Yearwood), St. Philip (Scarboro) and St. James (Holder) respectively.

With at least one murder in eight out of the eleven parishes, the total murder count for the year, up to the end of November, is at least 47 persons.


Heat Map of Murders in Barbados – January to November 2019
Table of Murders in Barbados – November 2019

Read full report

Adults Failing Our Youth

It is with reluctance this blogmaster highlights the death of 16 year old student who was stabbed to death by a fellow student of similar age from the same school. The taking of the life caused by an argument over $20 that arose from a gambling session.

Predictably the Barbados Secondary Teachers Union (BSTU) have scheduled a meeting tomorrow at 12:30PM at Solidarity House to discuss the matter – the only agenda item – Deadly Violence Within Our School System.

The BU family have been discussing the deterioration in the social fabric of our society from inception of the blog in 2007 and others beyond. The indiscipline playing out in our schools is mirroring the current state of affairs in the wider society.  Why then are we surprised when tragedy strikes as it did last Friday?

There are calls for greater security on school premises, more counselors, improved parenting and the cries are endless.

For over 40 years we have allowed the PSV sector to run amok on the island.

The BSTU, BTU and other unions have been silent when bad apples in the teaching service have perpetrated unprofessional acts (sexual) on students.

Most parents do not attend parent teacher’s meetings because they are ‘busy’

Politicians do not lead by example, case in point Michael Carrington withheld an old man’s money and the then prime minister refused to fire the offender.

Senior teachers appointed to the service based on political affiliation.

The blogmaster does not have the emotional stamina to continue with this blog except to suggest we are finding out what it is “to sow the wind and reap the whirlwind“.






Barbados 2017 Murders Revisited – Who Was Charged?

For 2017, I counted a total of at least 31 murders for the year. In my previous posts, the focus has always been on that of the victim and included details such as their name, age, location where it happened, how and their gender. This post will shift the focus to those who have been charged with the murder of the victims.


The methodology employed is fairly simple:

  1. Choose the time period (2017).
  2. Run a Google search for the victim’s name.
  3. Collect and compile details (name, address, age, date charged) on those charged based on media reports found in Google search results.

A point worth noting is that for victims searched and with zero results of person/persons being charged, it could mean one of at least two things: either no one has been charged (as yet) or a person(s) were charged, but for whatever reason, news of it was not found at the time of my Google query.

Another point worth noting is that the results do not speak to motive, or relationship between murderer and victim, nor the details around the murderers socio-economic circumstances, et cetera.


Of the 31 murders recorded, I found reports of murder charges, via Google, for 14 victims. For the remainder 17, I could find no reports of any charges.

Multiple persons (2 in one murder to as much as 6 in another) were charged in 5 of the 14 murders.

A total of 28 persons were charged for the 14 murders. Those charged were as young as 17 years old while the eldest was 47 years old. The average age of those charged was 27 years old.

Read full text @caribbeansignal.comBarbados 2017 Murders Revisited – Who Was Charged?

The Natalie Crichlow Video

This video shared widely on social media raises doubt in the minds of some that the truth surrounding the death of 44 year old Natalie Crichlow is being suppressed by the authorities. The Commissioner of Police Tyrone Griffith confirmed in a press release no accelerant was detected from the post mortem process and  likely cause of death was as a result of a gas cylinder which exploded.

Further comment is therefore required from the police to clarify the matter.

Barbados Murder Statistics July 2019

July 2019 saw at least two murders taking place in Barbados (32 for the year so far). Both of them took place in in St. Michael. The victims were male and died as a result of gun and knife related violence. The data was collected and compiled based on available media reports at the time. See below charts for additional details and analysis.

Follow the analysis


Barbados Murder Statistics June 2019

The murder count has moved to 32, there was a stabbing in Bridgetown last night – Blogmaster

June 2019 saw four murders taking place in Barbados (30 for the year so far). Two of them took place in in St. Michael, while the remaining two took place in St. Philip and Christ Church respectively. The four victims were all male and died as a result of gun violence. The data was collected and compiled based on reports in the media. See below charts for additional details and analysis.

Full details

The Grenville Phillips Column – Crime Pays the Bills

We have reached a state in Barbados where crime pays the bills of many households. Politicians who participated in the last general election know this. While canvassing in certain areas, it was common to hear the same excuse that there were no other options available.

Since then, things have only gotten worse for most. Many claim that: no-one in their house is working, they have received disconnection notices for light and water utilities, they cannot afford to pay all of the rent, and the Welfare department is unresponsive.

It is reasonable for the public to expect the political party in power to provide solutions to national problems. However, regardless of the severity of the problems facing Barbadians, the political response is generally the same. Namely, that it took 10 years of mismanagement to get us here, and it will take time to fix the DLP’s mess.

That political excuse is now constantly repeated by most radio moderators, and newspaper editorialists and columnists. But it does not solve any of our problems. We have been asked what we would have done to solve the crime situation. This article addresses that question.

The police commissioner recently reported that most crime was of a socio-economic nature. Solutions Barbados’ crime policies were designed to remove the socio-economic ‘no-options’ excuse. The BLP administration is encouraged to consider them for the benefit of us all, but they should be reminded that they are designed to be implemented together, not separately. So what would we have done about crime had Solutions Barbados formed the Government?

We would have managed all public services to become internationally competitive, to ensure a reliable and efficient service at a fraction of the current cost. We should remember that we currently pay for the cost of an efficient service, plus the additional wastage, inefficiency, and unproductivity costs. The additional cost to Government would have been $0.00, since several of our candidates had international management experience.

With reliable low-cost public utility services, every household would have received a subsistence amount of water every month, free of cost. The rates above this amount would have been increased, so that we could help our fellow citizens, who were experiencing temporary financial challenges. The same method was to have been used for electricity and natural gas. The additional cost to Government would have been $0.00.

Once households can rely on utilities, they can better prepare for work and school. With public transportation properly managed, bus fares on public buses would have been reduced. The excessive maintenance cost would have been significantly reduced by allowing all garages to competitively tender for maintaining Transport Board buses for six months at a time, with parts being provided free of all duties and taxes. The additional cost to Government would have been $0.00.

From the start of a Solutions Barbados administration, all households would have been trained to start and grow profitable businesses. The additional cost to Government would have been $0.00, since I have been doing this even before I won the 2014 National Innovation Competition. The training would have been facilitated on a national level by CBC-TV.

Once a business became viable, then it could qualify for a micro-loan not to exceed $5,000. The net cost to Government would have been $0.00, since the money was to have been repaid within 2 years.

The secondary school curriculum would have been rearranged, so that the more exciting and easier-to-learn practical aspects of all subjects would have been taught first. Every student would have left school with at least one marketable skill and a profitable small business. The additional cost to Government would have been $0.00.

All non-violent offences would have attracted a fine. Guilty pleas would have attracted a substantially lesser fine. Those who could not afford to pay their fines would have been provided with work. Therefore, we could have properly maintained our infrastructure for a fraction of the cost. The offender would also have learned a marketable skill that they could trade. The additional cost to Government would have been $0.00.

Violent offenders would have been both fined and incarcerated. While incarcerated, they would have been trained to start and grow profitable businesses, with the profits being equally shared between inmates, prison staff, and victims of crime. The additional cost to Government would have been $0.00.

While the additional cost to Government is conservatively stated at $0.00, there is a significant cost saving on most of them, making the comprehensive socio-economic crime policy profitable. Taken together, these policies that we published four years ago, would have allowed bills to be paid legitimately.

Grenville Phillips II is a Chartered Structural Engineer and President of Solutions Barbados. He can be reached at

STOP Playing Tit for Tat Politics


Submitted by Wayne Cadogan, Retired Garment Manufacturer, Trainer, Consultant

It is very difficult for me and many others to grapple every day with the fact the DLP is referred to as the opposition party when nine others parties contested the elections and not one of them won a single seat with the BLP winning with a clean sweep of the thirty seats contested. 

Why is it that former members of the DLP are speaking out on issues as the opposition when there are eight other parties that are in the same boat as the DLP without a single representative in the house that can consider themselves as opposition members too? 

The  most pressing issue that is currently hurting the country severely is the spate of murders and which has become a very troublesome issue for the government, people and international reputation.

The former Attorney General Mr Adriel Brathwaithe has some nerve to tell the present Attorney General to resign over the current gun violence that is currently bringing this country to one of fear and despair when all of this started under his watch during his spineless reign as Attorney General.

It is about time that the politicians in this country get serious about what is really happening to this country before it gets to a point that it cannot be reverse. This tit for tat tactics that both parties use against each other is not politics but a bunch of immature politicians whose behaviour is similar to that of kids growing up. 


This country is facing serious problems and sailing in dangerous waters that it has never traversed and we all need to put our heads together to turn this ugly situation around before it completely destroys our fragile tourist industry we have to depend on for the only source of foreign exchange.

The politicians in this country need to act more mature and businesslike and realize that running a country is not child’s play, it is serious business to run a country and it needs competent people.  


It would be in the best interest if the members of the DLP if the party is to rise from the grave as a political party in this country again, to stop being so negative and criticizing everything that the government does, praise them occasionally for some of its efforts in trying to get the country back on track that they helped to destroy. 

Internet Town Hall on Crime & Violence – All Are Invited

With the tranquil landscape of Barbados being routinely disturbed by a culture of gun violence an unprecedented murder rate.  Civil society is being encouraged to frankly discuss short term and long term measures to implement to arrest the trending. BU commenter Greene posted the following measures (with minor edits by the blogmaster) to kickoff Barbados Underground Internet Town Hall on Crime & ViolenceHow to Arrest it NOW.

David, Barbados Underground

Short term measures

  1. Come right out and tell Bajans that the young men in some areas are murderers and are terrorising BIM by killing one another and if they continue so the Govt will have to invite people in BIM to take their place in BIM.
  2. Tell them that the illegal drug trade and reprisals are responsible for murders. that the guns are coming through the Port and that any government officials including but not limited to politicians, police and customs involved and caught will be punished severely. Change the official corruption laws to suit.
  3. Tell mothers and women by accepting drug money and turning a blind eye to the activities of their sons and boyfriends that they part of the problem.
  4. Enforce or implement Money Laundering and asset forfeiture Laws
  5. Second half the Defence Force to the police as patrol units in hot spot with a view to engage and challenge suspected drug and gun men/dealers based on intelligence in the first place and observation when they are in the area.
  6. Actually engage and if fired upon shoot to kill taking into consideration threats to their own lives and dangers posed to others in the area.
  7. Speedy Trials
  8. Look to pop some necks even if it means changing the laws.
  9. Discuss openly about what is causing the problems and solicit solutions.
  10. Seek a truce between warring factions with a forum where where they can confront each other in a neutral setting (do not know if this is possible).
  11. Look at witnesses protection with a view to sending those who qualify to other participatory islands/ countries.
  12. Provide and lease farm land to young men and women who say they have nothing to do.
  13. Teach civics from primary school with an established set of ideals that we expect from Bajans.

And I would say all this to the public.

Long term

  1. Look to change the school system to make it more hands on for boys with more technical subjects.
  2. Revert to single sex schools
  3. Provide counselling or more counselling for troubled youths and parents with early intervention programmes.
  4. Improve the lot of the police by paying them more and making the service more attractive. If the Government says they have no money they can exempt police, fire and prisons (emergency services) from income taxes and provide free health care at any private facility.
  5. Disband the Defence Force and recruit those who want to and are qualified into the police, fire service and prisons.
  6. Change corruption and other associated laws.
  7. Make marijuana legal for anyone over 18.
  8. Decriminalize other hard drugs treating them as a health issue and not a legal issue.
  9. Alter all the above from time to time to suit the changing circumstances.
  10. Look to improve the long term economic and employment situation.

Fighting Corruption at the Port Authority and Grantley Adams Airport

Several times this blogmaster has listened to Commissioner of Police Tyrone Griffith share with the public his perspective that corruption at our ports of entry is a big reason illegal guns enter the island. Every time Griffith makes the statement, trade unionists feel compelled to defend the public workers fingered.  Griffith has been targeted in his criticism by naming the Bridgetown Port and Grantley Adams Airport.

It boggles the mind why Customs Officers and the Police appear not to have a close working relationship given a common national security mandate. To quote Commissioner Griffith :-

The reality is that where there is corruption, there will always be problems. And so, if the system is corrupt, then we are not going to get the information and support. You have to work together to break the back of those crimes. And so, even though the intelligence says that, you are not going to get that tip that breaks it…There is corruption. There must be some form…there must be corruption if you are going to have the number of firearms that are coming onto our shores illegally…then there has to be corruption

One has to give credit to Commissioner Griffith that his public criticism is based on credible  intelligence. After all, it is what he does. There comes a point when country must come first and those in charge must demonstrate the leadership required to get the job done.

Against the foregoing a recent court martial case against David Harewood of the Barbados Coast Guard amplified the concern shared by Commissioner Griffith.  Without rehashing the transcript of cellphone conversations between Harewood, a senior Coast Guard official had with some unsavoury characters- this blogmaster is satisfied those responsible for guarding national security interest have been compromised.

The BU household has been cautioning Barbados authorities for many years we are in a bad place and must change the way we have been managing our affairs. The same lack of leadership that has seen the growth of a sub culture in the transportation sector has propagated to every facet how we do business on the island.

The World Bank chronicled the “corrosive” impact corruption has on the ability to exercise good governance.

Most importantly, corruption breaks the trust between the citizens and the state that is critical for development to work. We know bad governance is one of the four major drivers of poverty, alongside conflict and violence; unchecked population growth; and the effects of climate change and natural disasters – Fighting corruption: the importance is crystal clear

The government and much of civil society seem to be consumed with confronting the unprecedented economic challenges of the times. We should not lose sight of the fact that a society is more than an economy.

The country waits on the operationalizing of anti corruption and freedom of information legislation promised top the electorate 50 years ago by a Tom Adams government.



Murder Statistics May 2019


May 2019 saw four murders taking place in Barbados (26 for the year so far). Two of them took place in St. Philip, while the rest occurred in St. Michael and St. James respectively. The four victims were all male, and three were shooting related deaths. One victim died as a result of being stabbed. The data was collected and compiled based on reports in the media.

See graphs

The Jeff Cumberbatch Column – A Disproportionate Reaction?

The Government’s regulatory interest in community safety can, in appropriate circumstances, outweigh an individual’s liberty interest. –US v Salerno [1987]

I suppose that one rational response by the current governing administration to a query by an individual charged with one of the offences stipulated under the amended Bail Act and thereby suffering a loss of pre-trial liberty, as to the reason for its draconian nature, could very well be, “Well, you and your ilk left us with little choice, didn’t you?” Bizarrely enough, treason and high treason are included among the offences, even though such charges are extremely rare.

With its pride deeply stung by an unacceptable rate of the murders of young men through the use of unlicensed firearms since its assumption of the reins of office; a phenomenon that culminated in the tipping point recently of the reckless Sheraton assassination, it could be reasonably expected that any administration would have reacted similarly.

For, argue as cogently we might that crime should not be politicized, in that no government can prevent someone who is hell-bent of taking the life of another from doing so, it also bears reminder, as I quoted in an epigraph to my column two weeks ago, “government’s first duty and highest obligation is public safety”. Hence, any sense of general civic insecurity will most likely redound to the disbenefit of the incumbent administration. And that is not A Very Good Thing, politically speaking.

Related link:

The Jeff Cumberbatch Column – The Tipping Point

So it was that last week, the current governing administration took to Parliament, for passage into legislation, a Bill to amend the Bail Act, Cap 122A. Mindful that the provisions of the Bill might conceivably infringe the Constitution, the preamble to the Bill read, inter alia, that it was to be enacted “in accordance with the provisions of section 49 of the Constitution”; namely, first, that Parliament may alter an aspect of Chapter III of the Constitution -the local Bill of Rights- by an Act of Parliament passed by both Houses, that is supported by the votes of not less than two-thirds of all the members of each House, and, second, that an Act of Parliament shall not be construed as altering the Constitution unless it is stated in the Act that it is an Act for that purpose. The Act expressly seeks to alter section 13 (3) of the Constitution, the guarantee of the right to personal liberty, that provides as follows-

Any person who is arrested or detained-

  1. (a)  for the purpose of bringing him before a court in execution of the order of a court; or

(b)  upon reasonable suspicion of his having committed or being about to commit a criminal offence, and who is not released, shall be brought before a court as soon as is reasonably practicable; and if any person arrested or detained upon reasonable suspicion of his having committed or being about to commit a criminal offence is not tried within a reasonable time, then, without prejudice to any further proceedings which may be brought against him, he shall be released either unconditionally or upon reasonable conditions, including in particular such conditions as are reasonably necessary to ensure that he appears at a later date for trial or for proceedings preliminary to trial.

My Constitutional law professor, the late AR Carnegie, was given to arguing that there were in fact two meanings of the Constitution; that with the capital “C” referring to the text of the document, while that with the lower case “c” referred to all the practices, understandings and conventions that regulated the governance of the state.

That distinction may be relevant here. So that while it may be argued that the amendment is not un-Constitutional, because of the terms and mode of its enactment, one may nevertheless contend that it may be extra-constitutional if it offends certain well-established understandings of the compact of governance between the citizen and the state. Not of course, that this will suffice to invalidate the statute in a court of law, but it should at least require further enquiry as to whether any established assault by it on the liberty of the subject is morally justifiable.

Clearly, there is much wrong at first blush with a statute that mandates such a substantial deprivation of an individual’s liberty on a bare assertion. The Bill itself at least acknowledges its infringement of the guarantee of personal liberty, but it also arguably drives a ZR through the principle of the presumption of innocence, that golden metwand of the criminal law, as it has been described. In addition, by displacing the discretion of the judicial officer of whether or not to grant bail to an accused person in a particular case, it might have blurred the separation of powers, a doctrine that forms an integral part of our constitution, even though it does not find expression anywhere in our Constitutional text.

The draconian nature of this legislation does indeed merit further inquiry, although it might be justified if it is perceived to be a proportionate response to the evil that it seeks to eradicate, so long as it employs the least invasive means of infringing the fundamental right in order to do so In other words, the infringement(s) of fundamental rights may be justified if effected in pursuit of a nobler objective and the means of infringement employed are minimally invasive of those rights.

The clear objective of the legislation is to curb the present scourge of gun violence and mayhem, in itself a warranted and unobjectionable ideal. In this context though, I would be happier, as a liberal skeptic, to have been provided with some empirical evidence of the incidence of bailed reoffenders in the area of gun crimes. Three or four instances do not necessarily provide cogent evidence of a pattern sufficient to justify the annulment of a right so fundamental to the rule of law.

Is the law minimally invasive of the guaranteed rights? Ostensibly, it appears to place the acknowledged sloth of our local court system on the shoulders of the accused, by precluding an application for bail “unless a period of 24 months has expired after that person was charged”, although there are stipulated exceptions. The question arises whether these exceptions are sufficient to soften morally the plain infringement of the rule of law. Some might still consider this period too long by far and thus too textually invasive of the presumption of innocence to be deemed constitutionally pukka.

Murder Statistics March 2019

The following compiled by – David, Barbados Underground

Based on the data I collected (via media reports), there have been at least six deaths associated with violence for the month of March 2019, an increase of one death compared to last month. The table below lists six individuals.

Leh Me Tell Wuhnah Like it is – Real Talk from De Block

Submitted by PUDRYR

“…As long as this blatant system of injustice continues and bajans openly tell you that prison in Barbados is for Black people, we can put forward all the ideas we want to solve the problem but we will make no headway…”

The Average man and woman in Barbados going listening to you, cause, like Barbados Underground Whistleblower says, the Royal Bay Gone Police Force, is leading the corruption, the drug dealing AND abusing de court processes.

Let me brek it down fuh wuhnah people

Some of wuhnah too privilege to even contemplate the reality of poverty and being hungry.

For wuhnah it is an abstract concept, wuh, after all we got free schools and free horspital care so everyting alright.

Few uh wuh nah ever been hungry till you guts grumbling and you only talking loud among de fellers, cause “you don’t want dem to hear your guts grumbling

When you at primary school, you can’t focus cause you ass hungry and focusing pun de blackboard hard as ass.

Lord help you if you ent got school books, pencils and school clothes, cause de teacher and de students gine mek you see hell.

And if you need glasses? as many of these poor children do, well your four eyed defective self will be at a worse disadvantage for your entire school life.

In wuhnah day, there was an unofficial community mechanism that wuhnah could use, But this is my reality!

wuhnah forget all dis when you lef de ghetto for de heights. IF YOU WAS EVER HERE!

Reality Check! my mudda got to raise 4 fatherless kids, as a single female headed household pun $250 a week or less if she wukking at Furniture Limited IN 2019!!

I gots a serious anger problem and wunna antiquated school system, especially secondary level education, CANNOT COPE WITH MY DYSFUNCTIONAL ASS.

Den, toss me into de minibus subculture, for 10 years (primary and secondary school) wid de ZR menses erratic behavior, driving erratically through traffic, just to pay de coolie who own de ZR van, $1000 a week, and you got a next level of anarchy in my ass.

Den, add de “blackies”, and my spliffs I smoking every day.

Man, don’t even add my maladjusted concept of wealth, a concept I developed seeing the drug dealers in my district.

You ONLY got “a shooting waiting to happen”

And unnerstan dis, when a policeman stop a van in in, fuh ovahloading, wuhnah sight how I does be de most vociferous in “representing” my dog? de drivah? de conductor?

See how I does represent a man who I ent know from bull foot?

Wunna feeling me yet?

So when my effed up donkey hear dat my man Stevie, my “family”, a next effed up thug like me, get kill, my black ass gots to go “represent” he!

But all wuh nah people who trying to solve dis crime problem, ent got one effing clue…

Plussing dat wuh nah RH got menses like Michael Carry Way a Ton uh money, 250 large ones and de Prime Minister Fumbles tel he, it alright

AND DE NEW PRIME MINISTER, Mugabe Mottley, inviting 5 of my drug dealer “family” my heroes, to Parliament.

AND WUNNA SCUNT TELLING ME BOUT “wun nah got a Block program fuh me???”

Man get de F out my face befo’ I GLOCK YOUR ASS

this article is accredited to Tee White and a comment he made here on Barbados Underground

Here is the accompanying video.

The Jeff Cumberbatch Column – The Tipping Point

Government’s first duty and highest obligation is public safety” -. Arnold Schwarzenegger

In the days when hyenas of hate suckle the babes of men, and jackals of hypocrisy pimp their mothers’ broken hearts, may children not look to demons of ignorance for hope.” ― Aberjhani, The River of Winged Dreams

According to the literature, a tipping point is reached where the addition of a single element to a delicately balanced object causes the whole thing to tip or topple over. It is recounted that the expression, as used originally, referred to that point at which white families would eventually leave a neighbourhood because too many black families had moved in.

I thought of this phenomenon during the last week when I learnt of the assassination of a young man at, of all places, the usually crowded Sheraton Mall. While, with all respect to the relatives and friends of the deceased, the murder itself was not out of the ordinary, given the numerous such events of recent times involving identical gun violence, the sheer recklessness of the deed on that occasion and, moreover, its significant negative implications for the general public physical and psychiatric safety marks it as a tipping point for our treatment of this scourge.

On this basis, that murder becomes more than a mere statistic as the nineteenth such for the year. It also causes to tip or to topple over the entire public assumption that this criminal gunplay has nothing whatsoever to do with the ordinary citizen and is restricted to certain locales only such as the environs of the City, New Orleans, the Pine and Silver Hill, to name a few. The sheer recklessness for the public safety, including that of some of its more vulnerable members, denies the validity of any such belief.

Further, the egregiousness of the act’s impact upon public safety approximates the revulsion felt at the commission of hate crimes in other jurisdictions that have sought to punish these by penalties far more severe than for identical offences with no such element.

It is not at all my argument that this incident in itself does not add anything statistically to the incidence of illicit gun crime that currently plagues us. In fact, I am saying that it does more. That we may be firmly on the way to becoming another Trinidad & Tobago or Jamaica seems to be already a fait accompli, and any attempt to try to halt that descent now would be akin to attempting to close the stable door after the horse has long bolted through it.

Of course, this is not to say that we should not do anything at all. The social compact between the citizens and the state stipulates that the primary consideration for the civic agreement to be governed is the assurance by government of their public safety. And we have certainly tried. From prayers to the Almighty, to warnings, to invocations of demon possession among the perpetrators, to changes of Ministerial portfolios, to pleading with, cajoling, and warning the perpetrators. None of these seems to meet with success and the incidents have continued unabated. Not that immediate success would have been a reasonable expectation in the circumstances, given the nature of the activity with its undercurrent of retribution that, taken to its logical conclusion, will lead to many more killings. Still, one would not have anticipated a seeming exponential increase in these murderous incidents.

Indeed, it appears that while the death penalty, an ever-ready populist solution for this form of misconduct, might now be in forced official abeyance as a punishment for murder, it nevertheless appears to exist and to be utilized among a certain sector of society as a remedy for far less serious offences and without any need for due process either.

In similar vein, the disclosure in another section of the press yesterday that the suspected gunman was on bail for an identical charge seems unnecessarily provocative. A magistrate or judge cannot presume the likelihood that an individual on bail would commit a similar offence in the absence of some at least prima facie evidence to that effect, and there is currently no provision in force that would automatically deny bail to an individual charged with a gun offence. It bears remarking, however, that the Honourable Attorney General has promised some reform in this area.

Earlier this week, a chat group of which I am an occasional member, suggested that we might have been too lax in treating instances of social anomie over the years and that we are now simply reaping the whirlwind of our neglect. This may be as valid a diagnosis of the problem as any offered so far; certainly, a state of affairs that is allowed to fester without condign treatment may eventuate into something far more harmful and thus far more difficult to control. Might it be that our apparent inability to curb other patently lawless activity has now, even if not linearly, led to this whirlwind of lawlessness that has little regard for the lives of others and of those who are in sufficient proximity to them? There are other diagnoses, I feel sure.

Crime Pall Hovers

There is an inevitability to the predictability.

In 1989 Red Plastic Bag won the Pic O De Crop final with De Country En Well.

The blogmaster posted a blog on May 03, 2007 titled Our Nation Is Crying.

The rise of violent crime in Barbados is responsible for 20 recorded murders at the time of posting this blog [23 March 2019].  It does not surprise the blogmaster and some members of the BU family, we have been warning about the weeds sprouting on what use to be manicured lawns. In response BU was branded a doomsayer blog.

Barbados Underground has posted prolifically about a dysfunctional court system. We heard from the authorities that both parties involved in Thursday’s ‘high noon’ execution were on bail.

Barbados Underground has posted about implementing an efficient transportation system. Almost four decades later we have seen a sub culture take deep root.   The result has been a paralysing sub culture as we are witnessing daily on our highways, byways AND in society at large.

The blogmaster has also written about the need to implement a relevant waste disposal system. Do we know what will happen next?

What we have is a society comfortable in absorbing a way of life from lands across the seas brought closer by how the global village is now constructed. There is the tension between secular and non secular and the vacuum left by a non adherence to traditional values anchored in religious dogma, ease of travel for leisure and study, access to the Internet and television, music are commingling to produce an intoxicating effect on a small open society. It must be said that Barbados is not alone in the fight.

The blogmaster over the years has been a harsh critic of our growing middleclass – satisfied with acquiring paper trophies, the house, car and frequent vacations to Disney – have retreated from a moral obligation to sustain a quality society. There is a good reason education has been allocated significant resources by successive governments. What is the ROI for education since 1966?

There is something wrong about a society consumed with discussing crime on a day OUR elected representatives in Parliament were debating the ‘2019 Budget’ and our leaders of the future were expressing themselves in athletic competition.

It was widely reported that President Duterte of the Philippines condoned the execution of 30 drug dealers by security forces within four days of taking office. He ran a campaign on a promise to execute known criminals and urged his supporters to kill drug traffickers and dump the bodies on the street.

It is evident that organic change is not possible by adopting traditional approaches in Barbados. One of the most depressing aspects to what is occurring today is to listen to our leaders respond with the usual uninspiring words with that deer in headlights look.

If Barbados is to excoriate the crime infection, we must be prepared to amputate  the affected parts. Heavy emphasis on targeting the blocks or certain schools will not be enough. Those perpetrating violent crimes are the victims of a dysfunctional system. How is it possible for the Port Authority to have non functioning scanners for lengthy periods? Members of parliament moaning about the problem because it has struck close to home will not be enough. To the politicians and supporters on all sides: we have countries in the regions to observe how crime feeds on a country polarized by partisan politics.

The blogmaster is not championing Duterte approaches to solving our problems which are most extreme for our culture. However, we should be able to agree that ‘shock’ interventions are required to arrest the decline in our society complemented with longer term strategies. The interventions must be swift and sustained from the leaders in the political and social spaces.

  • 24 hour courts (encourage retirees to volunteer)
  • On the spot fines (impound vehicles on the spot)
  • Child Care and other Welfare Services must be empowered to intervene swiftly in troubled households.
  • Random stop and searches (request citizens being searched to record the activity to force transparency, suggestion?)
  • Legislate car pooling hours between 6AM to 8AM and 4PM to 6PM – minimum loads), legislate taxi rates in the time periods
  • Minister of Education Bradshaw, we need to discuss and implement the reforms promised to how we educate our people as a matter of priority.
  • add to the suggestions, non linear only!

Of course Barbadians will protest, it is what we do. However if we want real change to occur, different approaches are now required.

There is an inevitability to the predictability.


Causes and Solutions of Our Crime Problem

Submitted by DAVID  COMISSIONG, Citizen of Barbados


Barbados owes a great debt of gratitude to Ms Cheryl Willoughby, Director of the Criminal Justice Research and Planning Unit (CJRPU), Ms Sabrina Roach, Research Officer at the CJRPU, and to Mr Sanka Price, Nation Newspaper reporter, for so clearly outlining the fundamental causes of our country’s crime problem in two articles published in the Nation Newspaper of Tuesday 26th February 2019!

The critical points made in the articles are as follows:-

  1. National crime statistics reveal that a majority of criminal law offenders are alumni of a group of some seven (7) newer secondary schools – schools that are allocated the lowest achieving academic performers in the Common Entrance examination.
  2. Many low academic achievers are lumped together in these schools, but are not given any assistance or resources over and above those that are given to more academically gifted students, and are subjected to the same academic programme and pace as their more academically gifted peers.
  3. Many of the low academic achievers who are lumped together have additional issues pertaining to behavioural problems, poor anger management capacity, and poverty, hunger and other “family risk factors” in the home environment, but are not given any special assistance to address these issues.
  4. Classes at these newer secondary schools typically contain 30 academically challenged students and are so problematical that the teacher is often faced with addressing the myriad of deficiencies the students are afflicted with and is therefore unable to spend adequate time on teaching his or her subject.
  5. Some of the outcomes of this state of affairs are as follows:-

a) Many of these students never even complete their secondary education – some are expelled; some leave of their own volition; and others are asked by the school authorities to leave when they reach 16 years of age, even though they might not yet have even entered the 5th

b) A great majority of those who manage to make it to 5th form and to graduate leave school without any academic qualifications.

c) Many of these students leave school without having acquired basic skills of reading and writing, thereby making it difficult for them to pursue post-secondary school skills-based vocational training.

6)   One consequence of these students’ failure to achieve basic levels of literacy and numeracy is feelings of shame and related manifestations of violent and aggressive behaviour.

7)      A national study of 200 criminal offenders has revealed as follows:-

a) 59 percent of them had not completed their secondary education;

b) 54 out of the 200 had been expelled from school; 52 left of their own volition; and several others were asked to leave once they reached 16 years of age.

8)      Many of the young criminal offenders that this dysfunctional education system produces are imbued with the following ideas and values:-

a) Owning a gun – an illegal one at that – is now considered to be the “in thing” – a prized component of “a fashion trend and culture”.

b) For some, however, owning a gun is also an indispensable instrument of “protection” and/or “self-defence”, since they are engaged in criminal activity or are otherwise a target of violence because of their association with particular individuals or because they live in certain communities.

Surely, the foregoing must, and will be, treated as a “wake up call” by our Government in general, and by our Ministry of Education in particular !


On at least two occasions in the recent past, I have produced newspaper articles which admonished our authorities to recognize that the sad reality is that too many of our children and adolescents are not being sufficiently nurtured, cared for, and prepared for life in our Barbadian schools.

I also recommended that we establish a programme to examine all of our schools, with a view to determining where we need smaller classes, more individual attention for students, a greater teacher to student ratio, remedial education teachers, an expanded curriculum, more technical, vocational and artistic training and certification, the assistance of psychologists and/or guidance counsellors, organized interventions in the deficient home environments of “at risk” students, and the list goes on.

And since we will be doing so against a background of our Government being cash-strapped and hard pressed to find additional resources to put into our schools, we should then enlist the assistance of all relevant civil society organizations – our Parent/Teacher Associations, Old Scholar Associations, service clubs (the many chapters of the Lions, Kiwanis, Rotary, and Optimist clubs), philanthropic organizations, private sector businesses, trade unions, churches, relevant professional organizations, the Barbados Association of Retired Persons, retired educators, Barbadian diaspora organizations – to act urgently on the results of such an examination and to give the necessary assistance to our schools.

Surely we can imagine an Emergency Programme in which Boards of Management of schools and their new supportive partners construct new classrooms utilizing inexpensive plywood material in order to accommodate smaller classes, and bringing on board retired teachers who are prepared to donate perhaps a couple of half days a week to teaching struggling students, and such like remedial or rescue measures.

Let us also determine how we can so restructure the content of our educational programme that we do a much better job of instilling in our students an acceptance and appreciation of themselves as sacred beings; a deep respect and regard for humanity/other human beings; a sense of personal responsibility; and a notion of duty to family, community, nation, humanity.

And since we have already acknowledged that our Government is currently in a condition in which it will find it difficult to come up with additional financial resources, I would like to propose that all Barbadian citizens who are in a financial position that enables them to make charitable donations should not only be encouraged to do so, but should be further encouraged to adopt a Barbadian school as their charity of choice!

Indeed, I would wish to urge our local banks and credit unions and our Ministry of Education to collaborate on putting a mechanism in place that makes such philanthropic giving easy and convenient. The mechanism I have in mind is a system in which individual schools are permitted to open accounts at the various banks and credit unions, and citizens who are the holders of accounts at the said banks and credit unions are provided with forms which they can sign authorizing their bank or credit union to make automatic monthly deductions from the citizen’s account and pay it into the school’s account.

I envisage citizens who can afford it giving a standard monthly donation that they can accommodate without any undue distress.

If we all put our hands to the plough I am certain that we can intervene decisively in this growing problem of criminal delinquency and transform Barbados into the wholesome, inclusive, nurturing and humane society that it deserves to be.

Barbados Murder Statistics for February 2019

Based on the data I collected (via media reports), there have been at least five deaths associated with violence for the month of February 2019. The table below lists six individuals, however, Kadeem Ifill’s death – highlighted in yellow – involved the local authorities, as such, I did not include him in my count.

February 2019 Murders

Full details posted to

Crime Wave

Against the background of a spike in the number of murders for 2019 – up by 200% compared to 2018 – the attempt by Deputy Commissioner of Police Erwin Boyce to assure the public that although the increase in the number of murders for 2019 is a worry, the overall crime rate was down to support his summation that Barbados is not gripped by a crime crisis.

The blogmaster understands the role Deputy Commissioner Boyce attempted to play in the prevailing environment. It is not dissimilar to what the late Prime Minister David Thompson, former Central Bank Governor Marion Williams and the late Supervisor of Insurance Wismar Greaves did when news broke that CL Financial in Trinidad had encountered hard times in 2007.

The time has come for Barbadians to accept that there is enough blame to go around to explain the current state that has seen 14 murders for the year. As the blogmaster is tapping the keys to post this blog there is a report of another shooting in the Black Rock area. On the ground what we are hearing is that gangs in Barbados have become very active in a fight for turf. This is not a situation that can be solved overnight by throwing security forces at the problem. There is irony in the memory of that time when the former Attorney General Maurice King pronounced that there were no gangs in Barbados.

We have to stop with the effusive rhetoric and political gamesmanship when discussing the escalating crime situation in Barbados.  The blogmaster sides with the view that politicians will say anything to be elected which conflicts with what is required to govern. Some people give the impression they revel in the crime situation unravelling in Barbados. A true Bajan cannot feel joy at this time

For many years the blogmaster has been posting about the weeds sprouting on our manicured lawns. Many then accused BU of being overly negative, yet here we are. Our education system continues to graduate children who are functional illiterates and lack the capacity to exercise logic and reason among other deficiencies.

Where do we come from here?

The blogmaster is aware that in every community across the island they are citizens who if they were to listen to conscience are able to expose the criminal elements to the authorities.  We have the opportunity to win back our little country by a few people doing the right thing. If as a country we fail to persuade those in our midst with information to share with the authorities, it will get worse. Is this the Barbados we want for our children?

MPs Murdered in Jamaica, what if….?

The blogmaster has been following recent events in Jamaica with interest. Two members of parliament were murdered. There is a feeling that it is happening over there and it will never happen in Barbados. The escalating crime situation in Barbados and the change in a Bajan way of life which use to separate us from the rest is no more.

We should not speculate why the MPs were murdered, however, there is good reason for the citizenry to be concerned when public officials are targeted by the criminal element.  For many years the blogmaster and members of the BU family have expressed concern about how Barbados society has changed for the worse. Do we dare speculate that in the near future local news will channel what is currently happening in Jamaica and elsewhere? Already there is a numbness that has set-end regarding gun crime, routine breaking of traffic laws, MPs flouting campaign financing regulations and on it goes.

The blogmaster does not need to be prolix to register his greatest fear. All the signs are present to suggest what is unfolding in Jamaica will happen in Barbados IF….

What is the call the action?

Let us joins hands and show we love Barbados, let us join hands and show we really care…

Inniss, Tasker, Innes Matter Filed Under DROSS by Barbados Authorities

The following report is reproduced by BU for many reasons. At the top of the list is the lingering curiosity by some Barbadians questioning whether local authorities will pursue this and other matters. The expectation is not meant to slur the character of anybody but to satisfy a reasonable expectation that justice must be seen to be done..

Barbadians have become increasingly cynical about the inability or inaction of local authorities to charge local prominent officials for white collar offenses. It is a naive person who believe white collar crimes “doan happen hey”.


New York News: BROOKLYN, Former Chief Executive Officer and Senior Vice President of Barbadian Insurance Company Charged with Laundering Bribes to Former Minister of Industry of Barbados

New York News: BROOKLYN, Former Chief Executive Officer and Senior Vice President of Barbadian Insurance Company Charged with Laundering Bribes to Former Minister of Industry of Barbados

BROOKLYN, N.Y. – Ingrid Innes, the former chief executive officer, and Alex Tasker, a former senior vice president of Insurance Corporation of Barbados Limited (ICBL), a Barbados-based insurance company, were charged in a superseding indictment unsealed on January 18, 2019, with laundering bribes to the former Minister of Industry of Barbados in exchange for his assistance in securing government contracts for ICBL. Innes and Tasker are not in U.S. custody.

Richard P. Donoghue, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Brian A. Benczkowski, Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, and William F. Sweeney, Jr., Assistant Director-in-Charge, Federal Bureau of Investigation, New York Field Office (FBI), announced the charges.

Innes and Tasker were charged with one count of conspiracy to launder money and two counts of money laundering in the superseding indictment. The former Minister of Industry of Barbados, Donville Inniss, a U.S. legal permanent resident who resided in Tampa, Florida, and Barbados, was charged with the same crimes in an indictment unsealed on August 6, 2018, and as a co-defendant of Innes and Tasker in the superseding indictment. Inniss is scheduled for trial on June 24, 2019, before United States District Judge Kiyo A. Matsumoto.

The superseding indictment alleges that in 2015 and 2016, Innes and Tasker participated in a scheme to launder into the United States approximately $36,000 in bribes that they paid to Inniss, who at the time was a member of the Parliament of Barbados and the Minister of Industry, International Business, Commerce and Small Business Development of Barbados.

The charges in the superseding indictment are allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

ICBL voluntarily disclosed to the government the payments to Inniss and received a prosecution declination under the FCPA Corporate Enforcement Policy. ICBL disgorged to the government $93,940.19 in illicit profits that it earned from the scheme.

The FBI’s New York Field Office and International Corruption Squad is investigating the case. In 2015, the FBI formed International Corruption Squads across the country to address national and international implications of foreign corruption.

Assistant United States Attorney Sylvia Shweder of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York and Trial Attorney Gerald M. Moody, Jr., of the Criminal Division’s Fraud Section are in charge of the prosecution.

The Fraud Section is responsible for investigating and prosecuting all Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) matters. Additional information about the Department’s FCPA enforcement efforts can be found at

The Defendants:

Age: 52

Age: 63

Age: 58

E.D.N.Y. Docket No. 18-CR-134 (S-1) (KAM)

SOURCE: news provided by JUSTICE.GOV on January 31, 2019.