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.

Denis Lowe Go Away!

The first method for estimating the intelligence of a ruler is to look at the men he has around him – Niccolo Machiavelli

The blogmaster read a report in the press yesterday that former Minster of Drainage (and the Environment) Denis Lowe,  “still has fervour for politics” and intends to throw his hat in the ring come next general election due in 2023. There was an attempt to make his intention serious by giving the story prominence on the front page of the Nation newspaper.

The blogmaster is challenged to present a cogent response to Lowe’s outlandish desire to offer himself as a candidate in the next election.  This is a man who left his ministry with a handful of garbage trucks and had to resort to commandeering MTW trucks and bobcats to remove piles of garbage from the streets of Barbados. What Lowe will be most remembered for is an attempt to foist a gasification waste to energy plant on Barbadians under the cloak of night. Cahill Energy … anyone?

The Nation newspaper reported Lowe’s desire to contest the next election was ratified by the Christ Church East constituency. The blogmaster notes the interesting comeback from president of the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) Verla De Peiza when asked to comment, the party will make candidate announcements at a later date”.

Political pundits are left to ask – how come the leadership of DLP Christ Church East  is so out of touch with the political reality prevailing in the country? What would have motivated a handful of individuals to ratify Lowe’s selection at this time? What would have motivated them to retrieve a spent, incompetent and shady  Denis Stephenson Lowe from the political dust bin? By the way, has he been given a clean bill of health? We recall he had to be away from office for unacceptable periods of time.

The blogmaster criticized Verla De Peiza when she allowed Stuart to share his specious concerns under the party banner earlier in the year. Once again this blogmaster is suggesting she should move with haste to excoriate political skeletons associated with Stuarts unpopular reign. At a time Prime Minister Mia Mottley continues to suck the political oxygen from Barbados’ political space,  Verla De Peiza leader is being undermined by political fiends stinking up her leadership space. If De Peiza wants to establish the party as hers, if she wants to match and surpass Mottley, she must respond with a ruthlessness borrowed from the Machiavellian handbook. If she does not the label of ‘watchman’ will flourish.

The ratification of Lowe by the constituency raises the perennial issue discussed many times on the blog. The private selection of candidates by the duopoly who eventually find themselves elevated to members of the cabinet. BU has posted several blogs exposing Lowe as a stool pigeon and plan for Peter Allard going back to when he was appointed to the Senate.

It is time for political parties in Barbados to reinvent themselves. Men and women must hold their noses and offer to serve. We can implement the best systems to ‘democratize’ the process, it will not work as intended unless intelligent  people with copious integrity raise their hands.




Does the DLP Have a Credible Voice?

In recent days we have have had controversial Minister of Environment making the news. He appears to have taken umbrage to the decision by the government to re-purpose the Sanitation Headquarters built under his watch. One wonders who is the person he alleged prevented the opening of the building.  It appears he has overcome health concerns.

Before Lowe’s sighting last weekend President Verla De Peiza gave the government a failing grade. One has to accept that the DLP membership in its infinite wisdom selected De Peiza to lead the party and supported the effort by electing Irene Sandiford-Garner the deputy. Should onlookers conclude that an emboldened Lowe will be followed by former colleagues? What will their mouthings do to compromise the DLP rebuild after the shellacking in the last general election?

The following snippet was sent to the blogmaster’s inbox reported to be written by Political Consultant Reudon Eversley – Do you agree with the author?

So Verla, the perennial electoral loser, is giving the Mottley
government a failing grade in its first 500 days. The comment is not a
surprise. It reflects a new aggressive negative politics of doom
coming out of George Street. However, the comment  speaks volumes of
how far the once great party  — now a fringe group since the last
general election — has slipped into lalaland in the last year and
half. Verla should be speaking instead about how successful she has
been in turning around the fortunes of the Dems who are growing more
and more frustrated and desperate under her ineffective leadership. By
this time next year, if current rumblings are anything to go by, she
may very well be political history because the patience of those
waiting in the corridors is running out. After the Dems brought
Barbados to its knees in the stagnant post David Thompson period
because of failed leadership and incompetence, there could be no
overnight miracles. The comeback will be gradual but I am satisfied
that the rehabilitation of Barbados, not just economically but on all
fronts, is well underway. Clear signs are there. Confidence, for
example, is back. The only people not seeing it are the  Dems in
blinkers. Miss Mottley has done an admirable job. She has led from in
front. She is the chief marketer of Barbados internationally — an
important task neglected by the Dems in the previous 8 years. Miss
Mottley is growing in stature and respect on the world stage and it
will redound to the benefit of Barbados. Look at the prestigious
speaking engagements she is getting. Look at the positive press she is
also getting internationally.  In the region, Barbados is being
respected again. Friends in the region who  used to call and lament
the drift they were seeing under the Dems are making the most
complimentary comments about Barbados’ leadership again. I am
politically independent. Since resigning from the Dems over five years
ago because I did not wish to align myself with political failures, I
belong to no political party. I am a political professional and my
views are non-partisan. However, I am supporting Miss Mottley because
I want the best for Barbados and the performance of the Dems in their
last stint in government shows beyond the shadow of a doubt that they
are not the best for Barbados.

Sanitation Service Authority Goes Out to Tender

The following tender which was placed in the weekend newspaper is interesting from a few angles.

  • Replies to the tender have to be submitted by Oct 13th;
  • Trucks and equipment have to be delivered 90 days thereafter;
  • There are vague descriptions of trucks and equipment and no technical specifications was made available.

A few other observations can be made (10 marks).

Leaking Waste on the South Coast, AGAIN

Manhole @Rendezvous 25/08/2017 6PM

There is no need to be prolix about the importance placed on local health authority to prevent liquid waste leaking onto our streets. It presents a health hazard to locals and visitors -bear in mind where Rendezvous is located.  It makes taxpayers question the managerial and financial ability and capacity to manage the sewerage infrastructure. It raises the issue of trust in local public officials who promised last year the problem of leaking waste on the South Coast was fixed when the BTII gave a broke Barbados Water Authority (BWA) 2 million dollars to repair the infrastructure.

The embedded image was captured within the last 24 hours at the start of a weekend that will see CARIFESTA reaching its ‘climax’. The leaking waste water and the unholy stench violating the atmosphere in the area of Rendezvous Post Office is a national embarrassment.


The Jefferson Cumberbatch Column – Freedom of Expression

Jeff Cumberbatch – Chairman of the FTC and Deputy Dean, Law Faculty, UWI, Cave Hill

It is, once again, that time of the year when we UWI examiners are called upon to mark examination scripts. As a result of the introduction of the semester system, this has now become a biannual exercise for us in May/June and December/January. None of which, of course, is of the slightest interest to any of my readers, but it serves to illustrate starkly some of the eldritch ways in which this columnist derives fodder for his weekly offering.

Perusing some scripts last week, and encountering for the umpteenth time in them the seemingly perennial elision of the “ed” and “d” from the past tense form of some verbs, the alarmingly familiar unfamiliarity with the proper usage of “their”, “there”, “they’re” and “they”, who’s for whose, and the jarring insistence of putting a “d” in “privilege”, I began to wonder whether I am not merely a silly old nerd whose demand for the proper spelling of words and the accepted use of English marks me out as an ageing dinosaur.

But then I thought further on the issue, and I recalled that the elision of the past tense endings had indeed now become accepted usage in some modern English expressions so that it would now be almost laughable to ask for iced cream, waxed paper, or skimmed milk. Hence it may be that one day, newspapers might very well be “publish”, matters will be “discuss” and decisions “consider”. I note in passing, with some alarm, that the spellcheck on my desktop is not even signaling that these are incorrect, but I digress. Sic transit gloria, I assume.

One of the areas of law of which I happen to be a keen student is that of freedom of expression and the nature of its regulation. In law this is usually effected through the jurisprudence governing defamation, blasphemy, and by the criminal law that governs libel, the use of threats, indecent language and the theoretically troublesome offence of using insulting language to a police officer, among others.

It may be then that while much of the concentration in the phenomenon freedom of expression is on what one cannot or should not say, much less attention is paid on how we express either in words or writing what we want to communicate to others. So when some weeks ago James Comey, the recently dismissed Director of the FBI complained “It makes me mildly nauseous to think that we might have had some impact on the election,” he was not merely expressing regret at his actions late last year, but in fact was denigrating himself in a Nauseating way. According to one commentator, “If you’re nauseated you’re about to throw up, if you’re nauseous, you’re a toxic funk and you’re going to make someone else puke. These words are used interchangeably so often that it makes word nerds feel nauseated!”

Yet it would be churlish to deny that Mr Comey did not tellingly get his point across. If it is about communication only, then we should not cringe at the media usage of “comprise of”, “council” for “counsel” or “criteria” as a singular noun. There is, too, a current radio ad that blares about “the less (sic) plastic bags you use…” But for the very few who carp at these misuses of accepted expressions, they must now consider whether they are not in effect seeking to infringe the misusers’ freedom of expression.

Indeed, in this context of dichotomy, today’s leader in the Barbados Advocate raises an intriguing question as to whether the extent of freedom of expression might not differ in one person, depending on whether he or she is speaking officially or as an individual.

So that while the Honourable Minister of the Environment, Mr Denis Lowe, has unbridled freedom publicly to air his suspicions of, and views on, what he considers a probable future enactment of legislation permitting same sex marriage, the editorial wonders whether he is as politically or electorally free to do so in his capacity as the representative for the diverse constituency of Christ Church East. And while there are those who will condemn him for expressing even a personal view on the matter, there is nothing in the constitutional guarantee, on a plain reading, that appears to limit the choice of subject matter on which one may express an opinion.

An apt analogy is not far to seek. An employee is free, in the company of his or her friends, or even anonymously on social media, to express a personal view on any aspect of their workplace conditions. That same opinion, posted on social media in a circumstance where the poster may be identified, may lead to startlingly different results for that worker’s economic fortunes.

Similarly, I suppose with the freedom of expression as it pertains to the mode of its exercise. You may elide the past tense indicator to your heart’s content, put a “d” in privilege, and even append the understandable extra ”o” in “lose” so long as the communication is personal or among chums. For those communications of a more formal nature, such as court documents, examination scripts and general public addresses, there is a tried and tested cannon. Until it changes, as perhaps, given the historical development of the language, it will, you should use it.

Defending the Right of the Male, Female and Third Gender

Minister of the Environment, Denis Lowe

It is no secret that Minister Denis Lowe is NOT a person held in high esteem by the BU household. He has repeatedly demonstrated that he belongs on the lowest rung of the moral and ethical ladder. He will be remembered by BU first as Peter Allard’s stool pigeon and second as the Cahill Energy instigator. Do a search of ‘Lowe Allard’  and ‘Lowe Cahill’  in the BU search box to secure bedside reading.

His recent swipe at those who advocate for same sex marriage and women who are childless has catapulted him into the news cycle, again. To quote him about same sex union, “I still believe in the biblical way of life,” and the dig at Mia Mottley, “he was not about to support any idea that the greatness of the nation is bound up in any individual who does not regard the importance of motherhood, of family, and of marriage according to the biblical standard. We want our boys and our girls to grow up in a society where they are not embarrassed because they live in a house where mum is a woman and dad is a man”.

The BU household is not a fan of the homosexual lifestyle whether born or learned, BUT, we respect the right of any individual regardless of sexual orientation to coexist with their fellow man without fear of being persecuted or discriminated against. And our laws both in the spirit and letter should articulate that ALL minority groups in our society are protected. After all, we live in the 21st century!

A recent article in the Canadian publication Battleground Barbados: LGBT activists face off against North American homophobes in the Caribbean Prime Minister Freundel Stuart was quizzed on what many regard is the country’s archaic buggery law. The following extract from the article is of interest:-

“There is a lobby that is trying to get the government, trying to get successive governments, in Barbados to decriminalize, as they say, homosexuality,” Stuart said. “But you can only decriminalize something that is already a criminal offence.”

He acknowledged that almost every family includes people who are LGBT, but stated that the country’s Christian character precludes any further steps to change the law.

Stuart then launched into a condemnation of many of the aims of his country’s LGBT rights movement.

“Those people, who feel that we should create an environment where they can practise their lifestyles in public on high noon on a sunny day,” he said, “want even the very limited controls we have, removed.”

“We respect that — as long as you don’t become too evangelical about it and want to convert all of us to it,” Stuart said, prompting a round of laughter in the room.

While the prime minister argues that the buggery laws are about consent, he’s contradicted by a prosecutor who actually brought forward charges last year.

Elwood Watts, principal Crown counsel in a buggery case, said in no uncertain terms that buggery does not require consent. “As long as the penis enters the anus, and there is a complaint, it is an offence,” Watts explained. “It does not matter if you claim the person consented or did not consent.”

And according to LGBT activists, the prosecutor’s views reflect how the law is viewed by everyday people, the police and the courts.

The dig Lowe made at Leader of the Opposition Mia Mottley is not worthy of a response except to confirm BU’s lowly opinion of the man who represents Christ Church East.

The following video is instructive.

Garbage Everywhere!

Overflowing and smelly skip located at Foul Bay a popular recreation spot. Image credit: Green Monkey

An overflowing and smelly skip located at Foul Bay in St. Philip, a popular recreation spot. Image credit: Green Monkey

Here is a photo of an overflowing and smelly garbage skip that greeted a member of the BU family in the parking lot on a recent visit to Foul Bay, one of a diminishing number of large, scenic, and so far relatively unspoiled (by development) beaches in the island. The smelly and overflowing skip was first spotted on Sunday afternoon (11/12/2016) and a check on Monday (12/12/2016) confirmed that it was still there -smelly as ever. Does someone need to emulate David Davis of Weekend Water Warriors fame and start the GCW (Garbage Collection Warriors)?

Of course there is a larger issue.

The controversial and ill conceived Cahill Energy project has slipped off the radar and the push by government to implement a waste to energy plan appears to have been deprioritized. All sensible Barbadians agree we have to address the management of garbage (waste) in a sustainable manner. The idea that on a 166 square mile island we can continue to create dumps (cells) is the lazy politician’s way of addressing the growing problem.  The BLP created Greenland landfill and the DLP’s Cahill Energy was stillborn thank God! Why this government would have made a decision to construct a gasification plant on the scale proposed is beyond imagination.

We have a waste management problem that we need to address as a country in a holistic way. Every day many of us observe children and adults indiscriminately dumping garbage all across Barbados WITHOUT fear. A view of the trenches as we walk along our streets reveal a dark side of Barbadians. Loose and bagged garbage tossed by the road-side, in canefields, on vacant lots and in other open spaces.  Then there is the worrying behaviour of our young people et al throwing garbage from moving vehicles. What does this bode as far as arresting the growing problem of litter?

We have to frontally tackle the problem of waste (garbage) in Barbados by adopting a strategic approach.

  • What is the vision and policy for the next 20 years to implement a waste to energy management plan?
  • How will we educate our people to ensure the correct behaviour is exhibited at all times to align with the national plan?
  • How will we enforce existing laws against littering?
  • How will government efficiently execute the garbage collection task and how can private waste haulers be integrated into the plan?
  • What about the recyclers like B’s, SBRC and the crying need to level the playing field? We (taxpayers) pay SBRC to receive predefined garbage and the others?
  • etc

With the country smelling stink. Garbage piling high. Sewage leaking all over the place. We are none the wiser how the many problems associated with waste management will be alleviated in a time related plan. Minister Denis Lowe has adopted the style of his boss and speaks only on those rare occasions. This government is rapidly approach the end of a second term -can we say we have made progress as far as implementing a relevant waste management plan is concerned?

Former BLP Government Blamed for Sewage Problem

Former Prime Minister Owen Arthur (l) Leader of the Opposition Mia Mottley (r)

Former Prime Minister Owen Arthur (l) Leader of the Opposition Mia Mottley (r)

The following was posted to Facebook by Minister Denis Kellman who acted as Minister of the Environment for a short period.

Denis Kellman

1 hr ·

As Minister Of the Environment I toured the plant and the swamp and what I was told about he plant and its capacity to function perfectly . I was told that a plant was built that was not suited for us and they have to dump . The most affected person is the lady by the corner by the swamp , who had problems from the inception. MIA AND HER GROUP must take blame for building an outdated plant and now blaming the DLP. We will clean up your mess again. Buses, sanitation trucks, windmill and Sewerage Plant all new to Barbados to old to the world

Sewage Alert!

The revelation in recent weeks that sewage (raw) is spewing into the sea on the South coast should be of concern to all Barbadians. Along with the health concern there is the potential to dent the …

No Suspension of SSA PRIVATIZATION : Dr Denis Lowe Has MISLED the NATION


denis-loweApproximately two weeks ago, Minister of the Environment, Dr. Denis Lowe, solemnly assured the people of Barbados that the outrageous Sanitation Service Authority (SSA)  privatization arrangement by virtue of which the SSA was engaging eight private sector compactor trucks in the collection of garbage at an astronomical fee of $411 per hour was being SUSPENDED at the end of the week that commenced on Monday 31st October 2016 — that is, by Saturday 5th November 2016.

Well, it is my sad duty to inform the Barbadian people that as of today– Friday the 11th of November 2016– the said privatization arrangement is still very much in place, and the private trucks are still collecting garbage on behalf of the SSA and are still being paid at the outrageous rate of $411 per truck per hour !

And so once again Minister Denis Lowe has misinformed and misled the people of Barbados!!!

Indeed, Minister Lowe seems determined to proceed with this privatization arrangement in which private sector companies owned by the likes of Bizzy Williams and Anderson Cherry will be paid some $16,440 PER TRUCK  PER  WEEK and some $854,880 PER  TRUCK in the event that the arrangement is extended over the period of one year.

But what makes the arrangement even more ridiculous and scandalous is that the payment made to the private companies is based on the number of hours that they operate, and not on the amount of garbage that they collect! Thus if they operate their stipulated 40 hours per week and  collect only 10 tons of garbage ( while the government owned SSA trucks are collecting 25 tons each) they will still be paid their full $16 440 per truck!

In other words, it does not matter how much garbage they collect, they are still entitled to demand their $411 per hour or $16440 per week!

And there is really no way for the SSA to police these private vehicles as they go about their supposed duties. In other words, there is no accountability built into the contractual relationship !

This arrangement may be compared and likened to the arrangement that the said Dr Denis Lowe conferred upon Mr Bizzy Williams’ Sustainable Barbados Recycling Centre (SBRC) for the processing of garbage. Under that contract the current Democratic Labour Party Administration committed Government (and by extension the taxpayers of Barbados ) to providing SBRC with a minimum of 36,00 tons of garbage to process every year, and to paying SBRC a minimum of $22.6Million per year over a twenty (20) year period WHETHER  OR  NOT  SBRC  IS  CALLED  UPON  TO   PERFORM   THE  SAID ANNUAL  36,000 TONS   OF   GARBAGE   PROCESSING  !!!

It is these types of outrageous governmental contracts that cumulatively are  sinking the Government and taxpayers of Barbados in debt.

In my capacity as a Citizen of Barbados I now hereby call upon the Media houses of Barbados to do their duty ; to carry out the necessary investigations at the SSA; and to report to the Barbadian people that Dr Lowe has misled them, and that the SSA’s privatization arrangement is still in place.

Denis Lowe It is Time to Ban Plastic

plasticAll agree Barbados does not have an effective waste management strategy –see today’s Nation front page story. The attempt to build the largest gasification plant in the world on a small island developing state -166 square mile island thankfully was stillborn. Late into the second term of this government there is no semblance of a waste management policy.  One would have thought there was the opportunity to learn from the Greenland fiasco foisted on Barbadians by a BLP government. The few recyclers -including pioneer Paul Bynoe of B’s Recycling- have been frustrated into being ineffective and are tottering on the brink of bankruptcy as a result of the lack of support by successive governments.

BU finds it amusing Minister Denis Lowe was elected to the position of Vice President for the Latin America and Caribbean region on the Bureau of the Second United Nations Environment Assembly (UNEA), fodder for another blog.

Minister Denis Lowe why not take a baby step by championing the banning of plastic bags in Barbados at the next Cabinet meeting? It does not require any strenuous use of brain power. Communities elsewhere have banned the use of plastic shopping bags for example and they have not cease to exist. Would such a decision not look good on your record given your UN responsibility?



Proponents of Plastic Bag Ban Declare Landmark Victory

SACRAMENTO – Californians have voted to enact a state law to ban plastic shopping bags, the first state in the nation to do so.

Proposition 67, the referendum on the state law (Senate Bill 270) passed by the Legislature and signed by Gov. Jerry Brown in September 2014, is leading by 52-48 percent. The law had been challenged by the out-of-state plastic bag industry, which spent more than $6 million to defeat it. The plastic bag manufacturers have issued a statement conceding.

Proposition 65, another measure put on the ballot by the plastic bag industry, was defeated by a 10-point margin, 55-45%.

“California voters have taken a stand against a deceptive, multi-million dollar campaign by out-of-state plastic bag makers,” said Mark Murray of Californians Against Waste, co-chair of the campaign. “This is a significant environmental victory that will mean an immediate elimination of the 25 million plastic bags that are polluted in California every day, threatening wildlife.”

“This is a tremendous victory for California,” said Monterey Bay Aquarium Executive Director Julie Packard. “We were pleased to stand in support of Proposition 67. Despite the millions of dollars that out-of-state plastic bag manufacturers spent to defeat the measure, Californians stood together and prevailed. Now, California can finally implement its first-in-the-nation law to reduce a source of plastic pollution—and protect our ocean, coast and marine wildlife.”

“This is a victory for our oceans and marine life, and for communities all over California dealing with the blight of plastic pollution in their neighborhoods,” said Marce Gutiérrez-Graudiņš, Founder of Azul. “Latino/a communities have a culture of conservation, and a long tradition of using reusable bags. We are excited to see voters’ support for banning plastic bags once and for all.”

“The passage of Prop 67 sends a powerful message to out-of-state plastics manufacturers that California’s environmental protections are not for sale,” said Sarah Rose CEO of the California League of Conservation Voters. “Once again Californians voiced their strong support for bold environmental leadership to move our state and our country forward.”

The law will take effect immediately. It was originally designed to take effect on July 1, 2015 for grocery stores and July 1, 2016 for other retailers.

More than 151 California communities already have local plastic bags in place. The passage of Prop 67 extends the ban to the remainder of the state.

The Yes vote on Prop 67 was backed by a diverse coalition of more than 500 organizations, ranging from environmental groups to business organizations and dozens of cities and counties. They included: Environment California, Heal the Bay, the NAACP, Save the Bay, the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, the California League of Cities, Azul, and the California Labor Federation.   The Yes campaign also received the support of more than 40 newspapers.

“This is also an important victory for the grass roots, said Murray, who noted the Yes campaign was outspent by more than 4-1 ($6.1 million to $1.5 million). “Special interests are losing their ability to use big money to deceive California voters at the ballot box.”

More than 40 percent of California communities are already living without plastic shopping bags through local ordinance.

“Consumers have demonstrated they love this policy,” said Murray. “In the 12 California Counties that have already banned plastic bags, support was most overwhelming, with better than 66% of voters saying yes to Prop 67, and an end to polluting plastic shopping bags.”

More than 70 percent of the Yes on 67 campaign’s funding came from environmental contributors. More than 4,000 individual contributors donated to the campaign. The plastic bag industry had just four contributors.

Denis Lowe Struggles to Implement a Waste-to-Energy Solution Late in a Second Term

Submitted by Anthony Davis

Denis Lowe, Minister of the Drainage

Denis Lowe, Minister of the Drainage

The Cahill project may be a thing of the past, but the Freundel Stuart administration has not abandoned the idea of a waste-to-energy plant on the island.In fact, Minister of the Environment Dr. Denis Lowe warned that Barbados ‘cannot fully develop without the inclusion of waste-to-energy technology’, as he piloted a resolution on the Barbados Green Economy Scoping Study in ParliamentBarbados TODAY dated October 25, 2016

Once again someone in this Government is trying to lay the blame for his dilemma on the populace of this country. When they wanted to hike the water rates Minister Kellman came up with the flimsy excuse that the populace used the most water in the island, whereas it’s evident that the hotels especially, use the most water. Other businesses, and Government also use a lot of water.

Pray, tell me Mr. Minister, did you not read the “Burnside Mangrove Pond Green Energy Complex & Beautification Programme and Environmental Impact Assessment Outline Review TCDPO Ref: 1123/07/2013C” which you should have received re the Cahill Waste-to-energy plant?

It states at 4.1:

Waste Generation and Disposal Requirements
Waste generation is closely linked to population, though for Barbados, tourism contributes a disproportionate quantity of waste. A rule-of-thumb is that each tourist generates roughly three times the waste of a local person in the same period of time.

If we take as an example that 50,000 tourists came to Barbados in any given year, how much waste would they have generated as opposed to 50, 000 locals?

I didn’t go to university so I need you to do the math for me.

Why do you single out the businesses – especially the restaurants – to put on the pranger?

What tax do you want to call this one?

The business tax?

I guess the businesses -including the restaurants, already pay heavy taxes, except they are one of those belonging to Sandals which doesn’t pay any taxes and won’t be doing so for years to come.

You can fleece the indigenous businesses and the rest of the populace, but you can waiver the taxes for some foreign entity, and in the meantime renege on your promise to give the other hotels of the BHTA the same sweetheart deal you gave to Sandals with the stroke of a pen.

Which type of waste-to-energy plant are you planning for Barbados, Mr. Minister?

Under 2) Gasification, of the said Burnside report it states:

Several waste gasification processes have been proposed, but few have yet been built and tested, and only a handful have been implemented as plants processing real waste, and mostly in combination with fossil fuels.

Wouldn’t such a plant produce more environmental pollution than we already have?

What made you lash out at some of your Government’s favourite people?

Have they stepped out of line?

Won’t you have to depend on them some time again?

Where are the anti-environmental pollution laws which you promised us for this year, Mr. Minister?

“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” – Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Suspension of SSA Privatization Scheme is to be Welcomed

Submitted by DAVID COMISSIONG, Citizen of Barbados

Firstly, I would like to inform the Barbadian public that I followed up my initial letter (dated 22nd October 2016) to the SSA Board challenging them to justify paying private business-men a massive rental fee of $411 per hour per truck, with a SECOND letter (dated 26th October 2016) calling upon the Board to provide me with a detailed Written Statement of their reasons for making the decision to privatize the services in the first place.

I am therefore pleased to learn that Dr. Lowe and the SSA Board have decided to suspend what was touted to be a six month  privatization programme at the end of this week.

It is important however that we– the Citizens of Barbados– use the opportunity to drive home some important messages to Dr Lowe, and by extension, to all the Government Ministers and Statutory Board chairmen of Barbados.

We must make them understand that the governance of our country MUST be conducted on the principles of transparency and consultation with the people. Thus, it was totally wrong for Dr Lowe and / or the SSA Board to seek to institute this controversial privatization scheme without first consulting the people of Barbados and the trade union representatives of the SSA workers!

Secondly, we must make all Government Ministers and Statutory Board chairmen understand that we — the citizens of Barbados — are no longer going to countenance any more of these outrageously privileged governmental contracts that inflict inexcusably heavy financial burdens on the taxpayers of our country!

This privatization programme was going to cost the taxpayers of Barbados FOR  EACH  TRUCK, the sum of $16,440 per week or $427,440 over the initially stipulated six month period, or $854,880 over a one year period !

This was financial madness, and we trust that we will hear no more of it after this week.

Deltro Group (Del Mastro): Here We Go Again

Former MP Dean Del Mastro in handcuffs

Former MP Dean Del Mastro in handcuffs

Here we go again!

Even before the Cahill Energy Scam has been forgotten, enters Del Mastro centre stage.

Deltro Group (Del Mastros) is reported to be responsible for constructing a 20 megawatt solar farm on 70 acres of land somewhere in Waterford for which he has received concessions from the Barbados government.

What does Del Mastro’s Solar Farm have in common with Cahill Energy?

Little or nothing is known about the principals of the Canadian Energy company AND what is known is unflattering. The unwillingness of this government to share information with Barbadians who elected them to serve will go along way to secure the legacy of the Stuart administration, one of the most secretive in our post Independence history in Barbados.

BU found it to be embarrassing business to read and listen of exchanges between Dean Del Mastro, reported to be CFO of Deltro Group and local entrepreneur Bizzy Williams. Why is this news if our government led by Denis Lowe and Donville Inniss have not adequately shared the nature of the relationship with these Del Mastro people? Would this type of transaction unfold the way it has so far in Barbados in a developed country?

How insulting to the people of Barbados in the build up to 50 years of Independence. Say Pride and Industry anyone?

A couple simple questions for our government:-

  1. What is the track record of Deltro Group in the solar power business?
  2. What concessions have been offered to Deltro Group by government?
  3. Was due diligence done by the government on the Del Mastros who appear to fit the definition of Politically Exposed People (PEP)?

BU family member Due Diligence unearthed the following blog to support positioning Deltro Group front and centre for investigation by the BU family.

Click the link: I Guess The Barbados Has An Open-Door Policy Toward Felons