DLP Rumble

The election of a President of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) will be held this weekend at the annual general conference to run from August 18th to 20th. On the ballot are David Estwick, Ryan Walters, Richard Sealy and incumbent, Ronnie Yearwood.

The election of a President of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) will be held this weekend at the annual general conference to run from August 18th to 20th. The interest of the country is piqued because with no other credible alternatives available the DLP represents the government in waiting.

What has spiced interest for many is the fact the DLP has had to accept two significant defeats in the last two general elections. So significant it was the party did not win a single seat. Although many prefer in the wake of the shellacking a credible third party movement would have emerged, it has not. Although disappointed, we have to console ourselves that the duopoly will be with us for the foreseeable future.

The blogmaster does not have a dog in the fight BUT being a keen observer of local politics, a few observations of a light nature on the current state of political affairs in the DLP camp are merited.

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Return of the Old Guard

An interesting conversation point that will attract interest is the impact David Estwick, Michael Lashley, Denis Lowe and Richard Sealy will have on the 2022 general election. The four were members of the Freundel Stuart cabinet and the previous government soundly rejected by the electorate in 2018.

There is nothing unusual about defeated political candidates offering themselves to the public. To do so they must have successfully negotiated won the party requirements to win selection. Political parties are private entities after all and the membership free to select candidates of choice.

Notwithstanding the preamble a look at the four members of the old guard and what it means for the DLP’s chances on the 19 January 2022 AND beyond is a constructive discussion to have. Although decisions taken by political parties are private – obviously there is the national import.

The involvement of the four forces the ‘new’ DLP to defend old issues ventilated in the 2018 political campaign. Issues that arguably contributed to the DLP’s unprecedented defeat. Denis Lowe had the Cahill issue and the blogmaster expressed concerns about him being a Peter Allard stooge of Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary fame, David Estwick’s public disagreements with former minister of finance Chris Sinckler, Michael Lashley’s questionable association with Trans-Tech etc. The big question for the political pundits – is the risk reward ratio calculated in favour of the Verla De Peiza led DLP?

Onlookers must surmise that the DLP conducted private polling to test the water in the four constituencies and the DLP executive was satisfied with the results. The unknown is whether the involvement of the four will negatively impact the national swing percentage. The size of the swing margins in the majority of constituencies the 2018 general election were large and the DLP will not want to make decisions to compromise the swing pendulum away from the BLP this time around. Another unknown is the extent the pandemic will have on voter turnout as it relates to the respective bases. Disillusioned DLP members opted out from voting in 2018, some may have voted BLP. Then there are the independents many who may decide to avoid the risk of standing in gatherings for reason of health safety. A cohobblopot of issues which the usual talking heads will try to make simple for a susceptible electorate.

The reality is that Barbadians are comfortable with the 2-party system that exists as it is in many countries. It should be obviously if we want the transformative changes in the economy, education, energy and water generation, waste management and others, like minded Barbadias will have to infiltrate the two main political parties to help with accelerating change in the national interest.

The blogmaster is of the opinion returning the four to the fold is a mistake not for the reasons mentioned but the threat to De Peiza’s fragile leadership hold on the ‘new’ DLP.

DLP Comfortable in the Political Wilderness

At 1:05AM EST the blogmaster had the uncontrollable urge to lookup the definition of ‘stupidity’.  One of many definitions a trusty Google search brought back was – behavior that shows a lack of good sense or judgment. The reason to refresh the memory of a a well used word in the every day lexicon of John Public surprisingly had nothing to do with having to read the daily comments posted by certain BU characters. It happened after watching the following video.

The three former ministers and a Senator in the last general election have the right to share views.  What is surprising though is that we have a political party decimated at the polls not feeling any urgency to come to the pubic to make ‘peace’. The majority of the public – we estimate 70% – sent a loud message that it has no confidence in the Democratic Labour Party as it relates to managing the affairs of state. What we want to know is how does the DLP plan to organize itself to be relevant in a period strong opposition will be required to safeguard the interest of Barbadians.

What many of us do not want to hear is a fragmented DLP lot coming to an expectant public looking for change to spout rejected narratives. Where is the credibly to be found in the four soundly defeated candidates pontificating about concerns they were found guilty of on the 24 May 2018?

The first job of the DLP is to organize itself to demonstrate to the public it understands where it has failed as a party, AND,  here is what we have done to correct. As a party it has not taken any positive decisions to assuage recent public opinion it is a credible political party to be considered the government in waiting. Especially given the frenetic pace the Barbados Labour Party has embarked since taking the reins of government

After ten years in government what is the enduring memories of the four by the blogmaster you ask? Donville, hot air. Estwick, puppy and Jesus Christ, Stephen Lashley, $2.00 stadium and Verla, always pun CBC.



How disespectful is it for four rejected c

David Estwick and the BWA Board Must Resign Over the South Coast Sewage Mess


Atlee Brathwaite, Chairman of the BWA

Early in 2017 the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) introduced changes to the management team.  Acting General Manager John Mwansa was replaced by Keithroy Halliday, Charles Leslie assumed the role of Director of Engineering, Wayne Richards was appointed to the post of Project Director, Patricia Inniss took over the Wastewater Division and Joy-Ann Haigh retained her corporate and communications role with additional responsibility for the rapid response unit. BU cannot confirm if the appointment of a Director of Finance was filled as announced.

Why have we highlighted the changes in the management team?

One year after the management shakeup the challenges the country has subsequently experienced with the South Coast Sewage plant leak exposes a level of incompetence on many fronts. In particular the decision by the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) to NOT replace two pumps required to ensure extraneous matter is screened and prevented from infiltrating the sewage lines is very serious and those responsible must be held accountable. The result of the mismanagement is that blockage has occurred in the sewage system. Ironically the Board had no problem paying an invoice to Hal Gollop QC for 1.5 millions dollars in legal fees – see link to the invoice.

It is not a case of being unfair to BWA employees, however, given the threat to the health of residents and visitors, millions of tax dollars already spent to remedy the problem and to remain true to an effective performance management system heads must roll as a result of the South Coast mess. We should add that the lack of routine maintenance of the plant appears to be the cause of the equipment failure.

To date most of the commentary has been wrapped in the political.  The reality is that we have very qualified professionals employed at the BWA who are charged with making decisions in the interest of the country. The public must be told if the Board was advised to replace the two pumps and if it ignored the decision. Was it a case of the Board not being informed about the failed pumps because of a flawed internal reporting process? In any event the buck stops with the Board of the BWA which reports to Minister David Estwick. To date the Atlee Brathwiate Board and David Estwick have not been asked to resign neither are we aware their resignations have been tendered.

Clearly any decision to dismiss personnel at the BWA at this time will have political implication with a general election around the corner. In a private sector organization the personnel responsible for a foul up of such magnitude would have been dismissed for incompetence a long time ago. In a meritocracy this must be the routine. Regrettably our system is one where political expediency takes pride of pace.

A lot has been written and said about the South Coast sewage leak. BU adds to the commentary by calling for the resignation of David Estwick and the Atlee Brathwaite board of directors with immediate effect.






David Estwick UAE 4 Billion Dollar Proposal to Restructure Debt Rejected by Cabinet YET he Voted YES to Appropriations Bill

Chris Sinckler, Minister of Finance (l) David Estwick, Minister of Agriculture (r)

In January 2014 Minister of Agriculture David Estwick in a surprising move submitted a proposal to Prime Minister Freundel Stuart urging the Cabinet to refinance and restructure the public debt by sourcing 4 billion USD from the UAE. In what is described as the UAE proposal Estwick advised there was interest by the UAE to lend Barbados the huge sum at an interest rate of between 2 and 4% with a term of 30 years.

Fast forward to 2017: the fiscal position of Barbados has deteriorated and has fueled national discussion about going to the IMF for balance of payment and other support, devaluation, low investor confidence and so on. What is surprising is that Estwick having had his UAE proposal rebuffed by the Cabinet voted YES at the second reading of the Appropriations Bill last night (15/03/2016).

As a public service BU shares the letter Minister David Estwick sent to Prime Minister Freundel Stuart in 2014.


David Estwick Addresses Water Crisis, HOPEFULLY

David Estwick, Minister of Agriculture

David Estwick, Minister of Water Resources

According to media reports Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Water Resource Management Dr David Estwick has scheduled a press conference for later today (07.10.2016). Estwick has been the target of severe criticism because of the inability of the Barbados Water Authority (BWA) to achieve its mandate to deliver potable water to ALL Barbadians.

One hopes that Estwick will treat Barbadians with respect AND assume an empathetic posture later today by leaving his usual blustery and bombastic approach at Hoodies’ door.   BU agrees with Dr. George Belle that the ongoing water crisis will have political implications for the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) when the bell is rung for the next general election. It does not take evidence-based analysis to determine how long suffering residents in the areas of Barbados affected by water shortages will place their X.

One has to wonder what motivated Estwick to state recently, he intends to treat the water issue  as a national problem in response to the question why he has not reached out to residents of the most affected areas. He is technically correct to say his mandate must be national in focus, BUT, the reality is that there is an area in the North of Barbados that is being affected.  Any sensible politician should appreciate the need to establish an ’empathetic connection’ with the affected residents.

Human beings cannot survive without water – the infrequent supply to areas of Barbados has served to increase the level of stress of residents in the affected areas. This is an important observation in the context of a Barbados gripped in a protracted economic crisis for the the last eight years. And there is no light at the end of the tunnel!

BU and others have written voluminously about the water problems afflicting Barbados.  The poor management; communication, planning etc. Residents in the affected areas must be grateful in 2016 to be receiving the many gifts of water. The many acts of kindness must be commended BUT it does not absolve the BWA and David Estwick from the responsibility of ensuring ALL Barbadians receive water at the tap. One wonders why the simple task of maintaining supplies to the community water tanks is not being achieved. Why rapid response teams are not being satisfactorily mobilized to fix burst pipes. Why we cannot manage efficient customer contact centre operations to respond to dissatisfied subscribers.  Proactive communication alerts via ALL channels. The website of the BWA is wholly inadequate in 2016, there is no visible Facebook and Twitter presence to efficiently exploit the digital platform in a country with  deep Internet penetration.

The BU household will join many concerned Barbadians later today to listen to Minister David Estwick. Our expectation is that he will leave the political rhetoric for the political platform and deal with how his ministry plans to relieve the suffering of Barbadians in the North of the island.


Questions for Minister David Estwick

David Estwick - minister of Water

David Estwick – minister of Water

Minister of Water David Estwick recently advised that he will be updating the country very soon on the dire state of water management. We hope when he eventually breaks his silence he will address a few concerns raised by BU’s Colonel Buggy.

– Barbados Underground


  1. What is the true status of Castle Grant Reservoir which feeds residents far beyond St Joseph?
  2. Given that the Castle Grant reservoir’s tank was last cleaned 64 years ago in 1952, when will be the next scheduled inspection and cleaning of the tank take place?
  3. When will the building above the tank be refurbished and the surrounding area de-forested?
  4. When will adequate security be put in place at reservoirs starting with Castle Grant?
  5. Does the Ministry have any plans of requisitioning water dams from private owners fed by streams in the Scotland district to supply water to human beings?
  6. What is the status of Joe’s River/St Elizabeth above ground water tank?
  7. Is the sub pumping station on the Cattlewash side of the East Coast Road still functional?
  8. Can ordinary residents in villages and other communities be treated with the Trenchless Technology ,as was accorded the residents of Cattlewash in St Joseph?
  9. Were some residents in some upscale communities in St Joseph such as Andrews Round Hill given preferential treatment in relation to their water supply?
  10. Why were those residents hooked up to Castle Grant Reservoir over four months ago and were given the impression that the supply from Sweet Vale to Castle Grant was at the testing stage they would have an abundance of water in two weeks, when at that time two miles of the pipe line had yet to be installed?
  11. Are there any plans to deliver non-potable water drawn from the streams in the immediate area, primarily for the use of flushing toilets etc?
  12. What is the status of the enquiry into the alleged massive water leak from the Vineyard Reservoir?
  13. Which reservoirs and communities are fed from the relatively recent installed water wells at Groves/Six Roads ,St Philip.

Is there a Preventive Maintenance plan in place to :-

(a) Inspect, service and clean the metal water tanks on the fleet of tanker trucks .
(b) Inspect,service and repair the tanker truck chassis.
(b) Inspect , service and clean community plastic water tanks, and the immediate area surrounding them.

What health awareness/water handling training has been given to the drivers of these tanker trucks?.


  1. What is the real status of Andrews old sugar factory?
  2. Does the Court Order now in force also prevent any further dismantling of the old sugar factory?
  3. Does your Ministry/Government have any plans of conducting an Environmental Impact Assessment exercise to ensure that the construction of the new Andrews Super Factory is not unnecessarily or unfairly held up?
  4. How many tonnes of sugar are we expecting to produce in 2017?
  5. What is the status of the cultivated fields of Wild River Tamarind project?
  6. What type of machinery will be used to harvest these Wild River Tamarinds trees?
  7. Why are we supposedly using an imported variety of Wild River Tamarind when we have an adequate supply of Wild River Tamarind all over the island?
  8. Has any thought been given to the fact that if these Wild River Tamarinds are planted too closely together they may not achieve the desired size?
  9. What has become of the Fuel Cane Project,started some time ago?
  10. Have farmers who were persuaded to grow a number of acres of fuel canes, been adequately compensated after much of these canes were left in the field unreaped for a number of years or trashed backed into the ground?
  11. Are you aware that there is a scarcity in Barbados of Honey Bees, Humming Birds, Yellow Breasts birds, Brown and Black Cow Bees. All very vital in the pollination of plants?

Who Pays the Water Bill of the Barbados Water Authority?

Image may contain: outdoor and nature

Barbados Water Authority valve on their Fort George Reservoir compound leaking water no stop for months!

The above was posted to a popular Facebook page Barbados Wall of Shame. In light of water outages especially in St. Thomas, St. John and St. Joseph and the refusal of Minister of Water David Estwick to resign the obvious management inefficiencies at the Barbados Water Authority bears severe scrutiny. BU was asked to share this story.

Cahill Energy Scam and Local Connections, EXPOSED!

There is enough evidence (documents) in the public space about Clare Cowan, Cahill Energy and Barbados connections to move the conversation in Barbados to one of accountability. In the documents attached Bizzy’s name is mentioned which explains why Voice of Barbados will not want to offend a major advertiser.

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David Estwick and CHIRP

On June 16, 2013 BU highlighted a presentation by Minister David Estwick – Sugar Cane Production: A Race Against the Clock –  in which he laid out government’s strategic plan for restructuring the sugar cane industry. Part of the plan (at the time) was to diversify the sugar cane to generate power and reduce the fuel bill by 150 million dollars. Continue reading

Chris Sinckler and David Estwick Saga Continues – Money is Sweeter than Sugar


This gallery contains 7 photos.

So far Barbadians have not been given the answers required by a government lacking in transparency. We ask AGAIN!

Prime Minister Stuart… all we want for Christmas is for the giant to be aroused from his slumber

It is difficult to feel cheerful in the Yuletide season when so many things in Barbados seem to be deteriorating. It is difficult to feel confident if a minister of cabinet publicly expresses his lack of confidence in how the Cabinet is managing “process and procedure’’. He is on the inside isn’t he? It is ridiculous a cabinet minister who should be guided by the code of collective responsibility of cabinet feels compelled to come public with his concerns and remain a part of Cabinet. All it does is to undermine the confidence of fatigued Barbadians to engage as citizens. It is laughable minister Donville Inniss instead of responding to Estwick’s concerns prefers to engage in the same palavering he recently criticised to explained the decision by government to issue a ministerial statement a few days before Christmas. It is the height of ignorance Prime Minister Freundel Stuart appears to be married to a policy of non intervention when it comes to managing a large and dysfunctional Cabinet.

The news in the last 24 hours that Standard & Poor’s has lowered its long-term sovereign credit ratings on Barbados to ‘B’ from ‘BB-’ explains the government’s rush to deliver a Ministerial Statement devoid of discrete actions to be taken to infuse confidence in civil society players and other external parties. It is so obvious that it is not funny any longer. Barbados has become the laughing stock around the region made so by the unwillingness of private sector entities to speak out about the lack of credibility of the government. We have two recent examples – Minister of Education Ronald Jones, supported by Parliamentary Secretary Harry Husbands promising (committed to) 3,000 UWI, Cave Hill bursaries six months ago and not feeling obligated – in our system of democracy – to update Barbadians on the matter. According to a recent press report when asked about it he said he had nothing to say.

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Who is the Biggest LIAR in the DLP Government?

Submitted by Jason Beckles

Chris Sinckler, Minister of Finance

Chris Sinckler, Minister of Finance

Can’t even pay NIS contributions. Sinckler walking bout telling big people big lies.

Related Link:

Unpaid National Insurance Certificate between National Insurance Board (Claimant) and Barbados Agricultural Management Co (Defendant)

Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler says urgent financial help is on the way for the dying sugar industry. LIAR

Delivering the feature address at the annual general assembly of the Barbados Agricultural Society at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre this morning, Sinckler announced that the Ministry of Agriculture, which is led by Dr David Estwick, and the Barbados Agricultural Management Company, the BAMC, were in an “advance stage” of concluding a facility through the Ansa Merchant Bank of Trinidad and Tobago for an injection of $60 million. LIAR

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Chris Sinckler and David Estwick Saga Continues – Money is Sweeter than Sugar

BU understands the Minister of Finance & Economic Affairs Chris Sinckler will play hardball with the sugar industry deal unless Minister of Agriculture David Estwick appoints BNB Capital Corporation to provide the financing for the new sugar factory. It is being discussed in certain circles that the minister of finance arranged for BNB Capital Corporation to handle the financing for the new sugar factory but Minister Estwick is not going with the flow.

Directors of BNB Capital Corporation  incorporated on 17 September 2014 are:-

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David Estwick Yelps, Again

David Estwick, Minister of Agriculture

David Estwick, Minister of Agriculture

BU highlighted faulty forecasting by the Governor of the Central Bank Delisle Worrell in the blog Governor Delisle Worrell Repeats Himself. We allow public officials to make statements without challenge. Governor Worrell recently had his contract renewed.

On the weekend we suffered the re-emergence of Minister of Agriculture David Estwick at a constituency branch meeting in St. Lucy.  One wonders if there is a strategic alliance in the making between old friends from the anti-Thompson era. To make the political landscape more interesting we had to listen to an aggressive Mara Thompson in parliament last sitting. It  must concern the enigmatic Minister of Agriculture David Estwick that his credibility with the public has dipped considerably in recent years. The reason he offered to explain his silence is another example of faulty leadership. He has good ideas but appear to be stymied when he attempts to execute.

To his credit he has been able to command exhaustive coverage from the traditional media. What is missing from the coverage however is the unwillingness of the traditional media to hold him accountable for past public statements. BU takes the opportunity to reflect on David Estwick’s public offering on the political platform leading into the last general election on 15 February 2013.

Watch Dr David Estwick – Manifesto Launch speech (15 February 2013)

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Remembering What Politicians Do

What about the law suits?

What about the law suits?

Are we not a little ticked off at the lack of respect elected politicians and others have for us, the electorate? Why do many of us allow political partisanship to influence good reason and in the process give politicians especially a free pass.

BU recalls when the Eager 11 story broke a few government members of parliament claim the article damaged their reputation and promised to sue the Nation newspaper. To quote Minister David Estwick, “this is innuendo and is defamatory in law. Pleased be advised that I have given my lawyers the instruction to see that my integrity in public and private advocation remains untarnished and unsullied”. Dr. Estwick went on to indicate there are one or two other members who have been implied to be part of that 11 who will take similar action.

What happened Dr. David Estwick?

In the build up to the last general election there was the hot issue of the Democratic Labour Party accusing the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) of  retrenching “10,000’’ public servants if they were voted to office. In response Opposition Leader at the time threatened to sue Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler.

What happened Owen Arthur?

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DLP as Clear as Mud

Submitted by Beresford

Click to review Draft Estimates 2104-2015

Click to review Draft Estimates 2104-2015

This Friday will be a watershed for Barbados.

The vote on the Estimates will determine whether hypocrisy will continue to subvert conscience and the DLP Government renews its hijacking of the economy and lives of Barbadians, or there will be a summoning of integrity, national and social responsibility in support of the proof of what the BLP has said about the economy – that the DLP is unfit to rectify the massacre of the country’s fundamentals – supported by no less than senior Cabinet Minister David Estwick.

It is clear from the Estimates that, regardless of the last ditch statement from the usually rambunctious Ronald Jones which merely served to reinforce the efficacy of Estwick’s stance, that the DLP has steadfastly ignored Estwick’s prosecution of its economic policies as complete failures.

The only dignified path left for Estwick, who up to the time of writing, has not spoken in the Estimates, is to have the courage of his convictions and stand for his principles in the full knowledge that truth is his amour and, when called to do his duty, he rightly put country before party or self.

It is also evident from the vicious personal attacks and nasty slurs on one hand, and the excursions into everything from self-taught historic diatribes and creepy sermonising, in a surreal performance that reinforces a dogged detachment from the realities of Barbados and is mind-boggling in its tenacity, the DLP Government is exultant to be adrift and has absolutely no intention of changing course.

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Estwick UAE Proposal and the Silence of the DEMS

Chris Sinckler, Minister of Finance (l) David Estwick, Minister of Agriculture (r)

Chris Sinckler, Minister of Finance (l) David Estwick, Minister of Agriculture (r)

It has come as no surprise to independent observers that the Barbados government has to labour to govern as a result of its 2-seat margin. Prime Minister Stuart finds himself in a position where making decisions is heavily influenced by the political considerations. Now that the E11 faction has been effectively quelled and its whip – Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler – had to publicly throw himself at the mercy of the Prime Minister in the Big Interview with the Nation newspaper, an interview which will stain his legacy and perhaps has ended his political ambition to be Prime Minister of Barbados.

AND Perennial  discontent Minister David Estwick made known his recent dissatisfaction in January that he will speak out on economic issues (words to this effect). Two weeks later he was reluctantly given an audience with the Prime Minister and cabinet to present a proposal of a lifeline deal sponsored by the United Arab Emirates (UAE). To be expected there was loud clamour in the public space about the workability of Estwick’s UAE deal. It has been three weeks since Estwick presented to the Cabinet of Barbados and it has been three weeks the public, including local media, has gone silent. Yet again the politicians have been able to ‘’manipulate’ the voice of the people by remaining silent. And off we go to the next topic the planned construction at Lower Greys.

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Notes From a Native Son: Estwick’s Rottweiler Behaviour Sends the Wrong Message

Hal Austin

Hal Austin

One of the persistent myths about parliamentary politics in Barbados is that we have somehow adopted the Westminster/Whitehall model and, by implication, the way our politics operate is the way things are done in Britain. This misleading belief is but one of many self-portraits we wrap ourselves in which have no relation to reality. Truth be told, all former colonies had their administrative and political models based on the mother country, but over the years we have grown apart. The myth of similarity goes along with the notion that we have 98 per cent literacy, that we are a first world nation, that we punch above our weight, that we are the best cricketing nation in the world and that our public discourse is highly sophisticated. Not a single one of these is true, or nearly true: we are a functionally illiterate nation unprepared for a modern technological world; we are not first world even if we do well to call ourselves a middle ranking nation; our voice is irrelevant in world forums; the independence cricket match, Barbados versus the Rest of the World, should have put paid to our claims of cricketing supremacy; and the yaboo politics centred around the economic mess the nation is in should put paid to the idea of high-class debates.

In the very fist paragraph of the summary of the House of Commons research paper on collective responsibility, “The Collective Responsibility of Ministers – an Outline of the issues”, it is stated: “The convention of collective Cabinet, or ministerial, responsibility is at the heart of the British system of parliamentary government, yet, like individual responsibility, it is a concept which is not regulated by statute, although some guidance has been formalised in the Ministerial Code.” Barbados is an independent jurisdiction and makes its own laws and develops its own customs, but if our constitutional experts continue to refer to the Westminster/Whitehall model, then our parliamentary practices must be judged on that model, that is the yardstick we set ourselves.

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To David Estwick and Cabinet, it must be about Barbados

Cabinet of Barbados

Cabinet of Barbados

In the last six years Barbados has been consumed by an unprecedented type of polarising politics. It is a politics which has reordered national priorities. No longer are decisions made on the basis of what is important on the national front but more to do with what is politically expedient. Political pundits had warned that the 2-seat majority government which resulted from the last general election would have landed us here. A classic illustration is the government’s commitment to send home 3,000 public sector workers but because of political imperatives the national exigency has had to be sacrificed, the result; a bloated Cabinet.

Perhaps the best example of politics trumping commonsense and national interest is the 9-day topical issue –  the Estwick Affair. One member of parliament holds the trump card (theoretically) which potentially affects the balance of government in Barbados. Whereas Arthur would have fired Estwick from Cabinet a long time ago – he had bench strength in the House – Prime Minister Stuart is forced to tolerate a minister who has made it known publicly he disagrees with Cabinet; a severe break from convention.  BU referred to Estwick’s trump card as theoretical because he has developed the reputation as a bluffer.

If the country was focussed on the national priority we should be grilling Estwick about what the Ministry of Agriculture (MoA) has achieved under his stewardship since 2010. Insiders are aware it took several days of suasion to get him to accept the agriculture ministry.

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Minister David Estwick May be ABOUT to Deliver on His Time Longer Than Twine Declaration

Minister David Estwick

Minister David Estwick

Cabinet collective responsibility is constitutional convention in governments using the Westminster System that members of the Cabinet must publicly support all governmental decisions made in Cabinet, even if they do not privately agree with them. This support includes voting for the government in the legislature. Some Communist political parties apply a similar convention of democratic centralism to their central committeeWIKIPEDIA

The Estwick Affair has started to gather momentum contrary to what the goto political scientists of Messrs Bell and Wickham ‘originally’ predicted. Whether the DLPites like it or not Estwick now commands the attention of the country and beyond given the current state of the Barbados economy which has started to severely interact with another reality; a 2-seat majority government. While the current tension between Estwick is cause for concern for the government, of greater concern is the likely impact on the need to effuse confidence at a most challenging time in our post Independence history.

Local media has been quoting an inside source (attributed to a member of Cabinet) suggesting Estwick should adhere to the tenet of collective responsibility practiced by the Cabinet in the Westminster System.  BU’s response is: do we practice a true true Westminster system of governance in Barbados respecting “codified and uncodified” procedures?

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DLP Blames REVENUE for its Fiscal Indiscipline

Henderson Bovell

Henderson Bovell

These shameless people engaged an undisclosed and secret number of thousands of people in the Public Service of Barbados (all during a recession) and since 2008 (as part of their ‘oppressive’ fatted calf doctrine) and based on what Barbadians are saying – also found every conceivable way to funnel state-funds to dems, through their flawed, “political entitlement programme” and now that their fiscal recklessness has caused a stench – they are telling the country some crap that Barbados’ economic woes can be tied to some global crisis. But it gets worse!

Within days of Cabinet Minister, Dr. Estwick telling the country that the DLP’s economic policies are flawed and the country is on the wrong path, the Chairman of the same Cabinet (which did not willingly allow Dr. Estwick to prove his thesis, through a power-point presentation, as requested) announced to the world – that Barbados’ economic woes can be tied to some global financial crisis that ended years ago.

Now! Something is not making sense, here! How can there be two conflicting views from the same Cabinet on Barbados economic circumstances and reality?

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Can Barbados Be Run Like a Company? If MP’s Would Learn to Leave Their Egos at Home

Ian Bourne – Bajan Reporter

Ian Bourne – Bajan Reporter


Like my old pal from Pull-Push, I also am not an Economist, but instead I wish to provide someways and means I have been mulling in the hopes Barbados would flourish once again, if they are used or adapted then at least progress is made – everyone is operating too close to the chest, as they seem to want to be the sole savior, Barbados needs to open up and thus advance in making the way forward as clear as possible!


It is sad that David Estwick changed his mind so drastically from Saturday at 2 p.m. We may never learn what fair means or foul were used to achieve the base result which leaves more bitterness in many Bajans’ mouths already soured by the gall of hardships that continue to appear so odd when compared with the rest of the world, which appears to be mending at a steady pace…

Read full text at Bajan Reporter

Time to Put Up or Shut up Minister Estwick

Dr. David Estwick, a key performer on the campaign platform for the DLP

Dr. David Estwick, a key performer on the campaign platform for the DLP

The political temperature is rising in Barbados about one year after the last general election was held. At a time when Barbadians would have wanted the political directorate to seek solace in the attribute Barbados is well known – a politically stable country – we have Minister David Estwick adding unwanted political diatribe to the debate. This is how it appears so far anyway.

If Barbadians are expected to entertain the huffing and puffing from Estwick for what seems to be the umpteenth time, BU hopes he addresses the following at his constituency branch meeting tomorrow. BU understands the Barbados government has made a deal with a company to restart the Four Seasons project.  The terms of the deal from a source states that JADA will be the exclusive contractor. From all reports JADA is alleged to be in the process of forming a number of small companies to distribute the work to respond to the public outcry which is bound to come a la Coverly Housing project.

The other matter we want Estwick to clarify is the suggestion he is being pressured by a member of the deep pocket class to back off. In fact we understand he is being offered millions of dollars. Is this true Minister David Estwick?

Barbados needs to get its act together.

Minister David Estwick Yelps Again

David Estwick - Minister of Agriculture

David Estwick – Minister of Agriculture

We have had hints posted to BU in recent days that Dr. David Estwick is not a happy camper sitting in the ministry of agriculture far away from the ministry of finance and economic affairs. It must be clear to Prime Minister Freundel Stuart and his cabinet if they were not aware that Minister Estwick is not happy at events currently unfolding in Barbados. BU goes further to state that Estwick has been fuming since the late David Thompson banished him to the ministry of agriculture. BU is aware it had to take heavy language from DLPites to coax Estwick to accept the ministry and in the process the DLP was able to avoid embarrassment.

Any government which has to administer austerity measures will not receive acclaim.    What must NOT happen however is for the government to be perceived as divided on the issue of it’s economic strategy. Minister David Estwick’s maverick position today will only add to the lack of confidence currently affecting Barbados. Prime Minister Freundel Stuart must demonstrate he has a firm grip on his cabinet. With a 2-seat majority in parliament it is difficult to believe Stuart will be able to exert any influence of note on Estwick.

Estwick’s statement even if construed to be a bark has has done damage to the government by conveying to the Barbados public, and internationally, that the stability which Barbados has been known for over the years does not exist.  Unlike other political commentators who have dismissed Estwick’s public utterence, BU believes this Stuart government has been placed squarely on the defensive.

How long can the Barbados government continue to manage our affairs in an acrimonious climate?

We Expect Better Behaviour From Public Officials

Submitted by Benny

I am wondering what example is being set in Barbados. The behaviour of four public officials and professionals come to mind. First we had the government Minister Mr David Estwick being accused of either pulling or exposing a gun to Mr Dale Marshall. Second, it was the Commissioner being charged with misconduct in public office and being held up to the people of Barbados as a liar.Yet still these two individuals are allowed to function in public office without being sanctioned I deliberately referred to these as individuals until  they are exonerated. They certainly do not deserve the title of gentlemen.

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Dr. David Estwick – A Phoenix Rises from the Political Ashes

Submitted by Gordon Jones

Dr. David Estwick, a key performer on the campaign platform

Dr. David Estwick, a key performer on the campaign platform

Although it might seem that I have been given the bad end of the stick it is my belief that I have been chosen by the Almighty, and my constituents of St Phillip West to work on behalf of this country.  My mother always said: time longer than twine and that the race is not for the swift but is for he that endureth.

Nation Newspaper (01/10/2010)

Despite a can-do attitude and an unmatched passion for politics the first term of the DLP administration was not been particularly kind or favourable to Dr.David Estwick. First there was the allegation of brandishing a firearm in the precincts of Parliament and then there was the public spat with a dying David Thompson ending with the now infamous Bajan quote ‘time longer than twine’.

Dr. Estwick who is affectionately known in the political arena as The Pitbull, undertook responsibility for crafting the economic message and arguments for the DLP campaign and also for analyzing the policies and personality of Owen Arthur and for the vicious attacks that resulted there from. Some will argue that it was the combined efforts of Dr. Estwick and Prime Minister Fruendel Stuart that ultimately destroyed the mystique and somewhat favourable memory of Owen Arthur as a leader capable of delivering prosperous times. The combined effort prove too fatal to Owen Arthur’s bid to regain the leadership of Barbados and the experience will serve these two well in 2018 when it is likely that they will be facing the more formidable challenger in Mia Mottley.

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Stuart Winning the Leadership Race as E-Day Looms

Fruendel Stuart leads Arthur in latest CADRES Poll!

Click image to read Nation newspaper report – photo credit: Nation Newspaper

Based on the most recent CADRES poll Prime Minister Fruendel Stuart is winning the leadership race. What must be of concern is that the Wickham poll was conducted before Minister of Agriculture David Estwick delivered one of the most powerful presentations of the campaign so far at the NCF on Friday night.

How will this translate in the individual constituencies with a 3.4% swing in play makes it a very interesting general election.

Illegal Campaign Material

Caswell Franklyn, Head of Unity Workers Union

Caswell Franklyn, Head of Unity Workers Union

On January 31, 2013, the Barbados Labour Party candidates went en masse to the Treasury to pay their deposits for the upcoming elections. The following day, the Democratic Labour Party candidates attempted to parrot the exercise and failed to leave the desired impression. However, one aspect of the copycat show caught my attention. The candidate for St. Philip West, Dr. David Estwick, declared that he was a lawmaker and not a lawbreaker, and that he would not be putting up any posters before Nomination Day, February 6th.

Believe it or not, I was proud of him for stating his intentions to stay within the four corners of the law, even though I have some doubts that putting up posters, before Nomination Day, constituted a breach of the law.

Imagine my surprise, on Sunday February 3rd, while driving through St. Philip West, I saw a number of posters bearing Dr. Estwick’s image stuck to light poles. After careful examination of one of the posters, and being aware of his public statement of intention to follow the law; I would like to point out to him that his posters do not conform to the legal requirements. Section 18 of the Election Offences and Controversies Act states, in part:

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Will David Estwick FINALLY Emerge?

David Estwick – Minister of Agriculture

Last week the Nation newspaper ran the results of a poll which promotes that Barbadians prefer Sinckler and Mottley to be named as deputies. BU is against opinion journalism. Conduct a poll which addresses the need to amend to party constitutions. How about how Barbadians feel about campaign financing reform legislation.  The list is long about worthwhile issues which could have been polled. However we appreciate such topics will not ‘sell’ newspapers.

We all know that it is the person who commands the confidence and support of the parliamentary majority in parliament that count NOT the public. Currently the Barbados Labour Party has named Dale Marshall as deputy and what? It is in name only if one were to judge by job assignments. Mottley appears to be acting out the role as deputy. But who will get the nod as Prime Minister on the morning after? Does anyone believe Arthur will appoint the George Walton Chambers man as deputy prime minister were he to win the next general election? Who knows, Mottley may emerge, AGAIN! Another BU belief is that leaders emerge. There seem to be an unholy haste to elevate Sinckler et al to the top post.

Getting back to the Nation/Cadres poll last week. How is it possible for the public to prefer Ronald Jones over someone like David Estwick? Jones has been at the centre of the Alexandra School dispute and has been fingered as the person who by sitting on the King Report exacerbated the matter. His tenure as President of the Barbados Football Association should does not recommend him as a leader of any merit. The analysis is not to promote Estwick over Jones but to examine the folly of the opinion poll in this instance.

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Why Did Minister David Estwick Direct Former Executive of the BWA to NOT Attend Meetings 'Conveyed' By Minister Of Finance?

A letter signed by Minister David Estwick which was sent to former Executive Chairman of the BWA Arni Walters

In an earlier blog reference was made to a government minister who instructed an employee not to attend meetings called by another minister. BU now post a letter which corroborates what the commenter posted.

As always BU is committed to reporting all sides of any issue. If there is a valid explanation to support the instruction given by Minister Estwick as conveyed in the letter,  BU is prepared to give equal prominence.

DLP In a ‘Gifting’ Mood

Submitted by Hamilton Hill

The Hon Steve Blackett, Minister of Social Care, Constituency Empowerment and Community Development.

One of Country & Western’s most prolific song writers the late Bill Andersen once wrote a song called “Where Have All The Heroes Gone”. While listening to that song not long ago,the sense of frustration that I had subconsciously buried for quite some time, fought its way back to the top of my thought process, bringing to the fore this question.

Where have all the stalwarts of the DLP gone?

With such history, such a glowing legacy of performance in the name of nation building, why now do we seem so hell bent on gifting away the reign of leadership, as was done in 1994? Old sea dogs the likes of Greaves, the both of them and others like Branford Taitt, F.G.Smith, Keith and Erskine Simmonds must make sure that the gaffe of 94 remains a haunting memory never to be repeated.

If such must obtain then they must assume leadership of a vessel that for the most part gives the appearance of a rudder-less craft aimlessly sailing the choppy waters of this economic storm. For the most part the First Officer Mr. Finance Minister still has our confidence. Of grave concern however is the epidemic of verbal diarrhoea that seemingly is now the crew’s affliction. Dennis Kellman….almost every day. Minister Blackett who needs to be told that he spoke out of turn {dat shit you talk, shouldda come from Fruendel} and then the AG who chose to call David Ellis, who is chomping at the bit (de same one Fruendel spit) to hold feet to the fire. How do they not see that their actions seem to suggest abandon ship? Is it that or is it every man brek fa e self?

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The Assault On Arable Land Continues Under Both Political Parties

Senatorr Dr. Frances Chandler

Senator Dr. Frances Chandler, a respected voice on land use in Barbados

The following message from the Future Trust is being disseminated by BU because there is undoubtedly a big case of relevance. Minister David Estwick has been making a lot of noise recently to gain attention for his ministry. It appears he has been successful in the endeavour.

National Meeting on Agriculture
Date: Sunday June 24
Time: 4pm
Duration: 3 hours
Location: Boarded Hall

Speakers: Dr Francis Chandler, Dr Chelston Brathwaite, Keith Laurie, Mia Mottley

Catalyst: Large area of VERY arable land earmarked at Lower Greys east of the Shop on the right hand side to be put into housing. Land was in food production up to two years ago. Is this the best we can do with our arable land when so much rab land is around?

A few will make lots a money and many will own a home but maybe unable to buy the imported food due to high inflation. We are saying the most arable fertile lands in the St George Valley and St Thomas must be protected from development. When will this encroachment stop? With the Urban Sprawl well entrenched all lands in this 166sq mile dot is marginal.

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David Estwick – Separating The Bark From The Bite, The Food Bill

David Estwick – Minister of Agriculture

The threat by Minister of Agriculture David Estwick to resign if his ministry does not procure an increase in its budget allocation can be analysed from a political or economic perspective. Did the recent Cadres Poll which labeled Estwick a political lightweight on the leadership index spur him to become more active?   View his outburst against the background that he is the only one from the E11 to follow through on a promise to sue the Nation Publishing Company. BU recalls Minister Ronald Jones promised to do the same. With a general election on the horizon a lot can be explained in the political context.

BU prefers to give Estwick the benefit of the doubt and to suggest by his outburst he has become frustrated at the lack of significant progress in his ministry since his transfer. It is the most optimistic Barbadians who believe that as a country we are committed to finding a way to increase production in the agriculture sector. The transformation in thinking required to influence policy as well as to gain buyin from the ordinary Barbadian remains a dream. What is also known, the government in waiting is committed to a service economy with  token focus on agriculture.

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The Biggest Losers In The CADRES Poll

Donville Inniss – 6.1%

An interesting bit of analysis which the recent CADRES poll has produced is on the question of leadership preference by Barbadians with a drill down on the uncertain voter category. Many – including BU – are not surprised that the deputies of the two main political parties scored low, Dale Marshall and the de facto deputy of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) Richard Sealy who has emerged after the Eager 11 fiasco. Both have a passive political personage which qualifies them for the job.

David Estwick – 1.8%

In the poll at the national level Donville Inniss scored 6.1% and David Estwick scored 1.9%, among the uncertain voters the scores dipped to 4.3% and 2.2% respectively. Given a perceived popularity around town by many politicos who believed they (Inniss/Estwick) enjoyed a greater appeal, the fact that Esther Byer-Suckoo scored 2.4% can be used as a benchmark to judge the serious of the challenge by the two at this time.

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