Well folks as a public service we bring to you the two contrasting blogs found on the DLP and BLP sites. If we are in any doubt that the spin masters are at please guess again. Now BU’s simple question is if the LOC has stated that it will take about three months to tally the Profit and Loss Account for CWC 2007 how credible is the talk we are hearing about the successes? The next question is when will the next CADRES Poll be conducted? It shall make for interesting reading.
‘Above our heads’
GOVERNMENT must listen to the cries of ordinary Barbadians about the Cricket World Cup (CWC) and stop beating its chest about profits from the just concluded event.
Opposition Leader David Thompson, in a release yesterday, said several Government officials giving “A” grades to CWC in Barbados were not among those who made the sacrifices and who also would be footing the final bill.
Last Saturday at a Press conference, Minister of Tourism Noel Lynch, and Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance, Clyde Mascoll, said there were mostly “A” grades associated with Barbados’ segment of the world’s third largest sporting event.
Thumbs-up were given for visitors arrivals, spectator support at Kensington Oval, cruise ship passengers and foreign reserves. Mascoll added the Oval had earned back, in less than a year, almost 30 per cent of the more than $100 million spent on its redevelopment.
However, Thompson was not impressed.
“It is amazing how ministers of this Government could so easily go against the tide of public opinion. Barbadians are counting losses and their ministers are counting profits. Nowhere else in the world could this be taking place.
“For all right-thinking Barbadians, Cricket World Cup was a disappointment.
“It did not deliver one-quarter of what it promised and if our leaders find cause to beat their chests, they are truly disconnected from reality,” he said.
The Democratic Labour Party leader accused Mascoll of “insulting the intelligence of Barbadians” by pointing to gross possible gate receipts as indicative of net earnings from CWC.
“First, the minister must tell the nation how much money was spent. Secondly, how much of what was collected goes into the public purse.
“Interesting also, he must tell us who actually owns the redeveloped Kensington Oval. I do not want to believe what I am hearing about Kensington, $150 million later, not belonging to all Barbadian taxpayers.”
He said while his party had done its part to facilitate a smooth tournament, now the dust was settling, certain truths needed to be set out.
“The Minister of Tourism must not just tell us about the huge numbers that attended games in Barbados. He must . . . tell us the number of complimentary and ‘throw-back’ tickets that made up those full houses.
“Sponsors’ tickets are not quantified in dollar terms. Neither should those that were made available to schoolchildren after the Pakistanis and Indians went home. Barbados did not collect that money and the ministers know this.”
Thompson said he found it interesting no other Caribbean leader or government minister had hailed CWC as anything other than a let-down.
“Barbados spent more than any other country. We probably spent more than all the other countries put together, because if you observe carefully you would see that most of the stadiums in the other countries were gifts and grants from China and Taiwan.
“In the case of Barbados, Barbadian taxpayers had to pull their pockets and will be saddled with that debt for the rest of their working lives and you have a minister of Government beating his chest talking about how this has helped to transform the game in the Caribbean,” he said. (PR/BW)
Now here is the BLP’s version of events:
BENEFITS TO ALL OF US
David Thompson and his cronies are out of step with the rest of Barbados with regards to Cricket World Cup. The overwhelming majority of persons, including overseas observers, have heaped tremendous praise on this country for its excellent performance. Many knowledgeable local observers with no political axes to grind have testified that we are truly the benefactors of CWC 2007. This country has gained priceless exposure and those who read the overseas press will readily agree that Barbados has come out well from staging the extravaganza.Thompson and the Dems are now saying that the cost of staging the event was too high. They have been using the figure of $500 million, a ludicrous exaggeration which is most self-serving and untrue. Perhaps they should tell us how they arrived at that figure, do they have information that is unknown to the rest of us? No, they are just flying a kite, but we are prepared to cut the cord. Do they figures include money spent of the roads and will the roads cease to exist after CWC? Do they include improvements to the health infrastructure which in any case will serve us well after the event?
Of course, all of the success would have choked the Dems who were looking for the event to be less than successful so that they could heap blame on the Government. It is therefore to be expected that Thompson would behave as he is now doing. After all elections are one year away and Thompson knows that his very political existence is at stake. Thus as a drowning man, he will clutch at any straw.
We recall the President of the local Hotel Association on many previous occasions expressing some reticence about the expected success of the event from a hotel�s point of view. Now that the event has concluded he is singing the praises of the event, noting the fact that occupancy levels in the hotels are well above that for the previous years. Many small hotels on the South Coast have been the beneficiaries of the wise decision to host CWC. That would give the lie to those Dems, who are expressing a different view, obviously based on their own warped wishes.
Many taxi operators have done very well during the World Cup period and they have been prepared to express that view. We are told of the vastly improved numbers visiting places like St. Lawrence and Oistins and this meant that a lot of ordinary Barbadians have benefited from the large numbers present on the island. The fisherfolk in the temporary Bay Gardens have been delighted at the increase in business over the period. Those persons who have borrowed funds to renovate their homes are now in a better position to become involved in the growing bed and breakfast activity, an important part of our tourism offering. Contrary to what the Dems are saying, ordinary folk have benefited from our staging CWC.
The legacy benefits are there for all to see and indeed to take advantage of Kensington Oval has been transformed from a run down exhausted stadium to one of the best in the world. It has become the place befitting some of the best cricketers the world has ever seen. We all can be extremely proud of it and what it represents in the psyche of all Barbadians.
The Dems will continue on its nit-picking path, they have nothing else to offer. The public is satisfied that the country has done well out of CWC and will continue to bask in the success of the event.
What is the DLP hinting at here? Can we have specifics please? Email us with the info then.
DID CRICKET WORLD CUP MAKE MANY MILLIONAIRES?
1 hour ago by dlpbarbados.
There are always persons who encourage the staging of big events, since they put themselves in the position where they can benefit substantially. The Cricket World Cup in the Caribbean can therefore be tested against this kind of analysis. It is already stated that more than 500 million united states dollars were spent in delivering the Cricket World Cup. That is a major amount of money for small emerging economies to commit to one event.
Barbados spent as much money as all of the other territories combine. The Redevelopment of Kensington Oval will surely cost more than the hitherto stated $135 million. Then all of the other associated costs must be placed before the public. We are therefore asserting that projects done in the name of cricket world cup would have costs the taxpayers of Barbados over $400 million.
Were millionaires created as a result of the spending of so much money in such a short period of time? The public should know who were the major beneficiaries of the various contracts and who were pain large sums of money under dubious areas of responsibility. Citizens have a right to know. The obvious spin which government officials are putting on the Cricket World Cup would suggest that their is more in mortar than you can see on the pestle.