Daily Archives: February 11, 2008

Governor-General Sir Clifford Husbands At No-Show At Barbados Parliament Opening – WHY?

Our Governor-General will not be attending the opening of Parliament tomorrow. Filling in will be Retired High Court Judge Elliott Belgrave, who will read the Speech from the Throne outlining the policies and goals of the new DLP government.

The Barbados media was told last Wednesday that Governor-General Sir Clifford Husbands is “indisposed”. No other reason was given to the public, but many knew that he would be “indisposed” for the opening of Parliament even though he was still performing official functions as the news came out!

Sir Clifford was born August 5, 1926 and is eighty-one years old, but he is known to be a sharp, energetic and robust man who is often photographed… most recently appearing in the Barbados media at the swearing in ceremonies for MPs and Senators. That was only last week.

So how is Sir Clifford “indisposed at the last minute” if it was known almost a week before the opening of Parliament that he would not be attending?

Slippery Albert Brandford’s Nation News Article

In his article Belgrave Acting As G-G, Albert Brandford glosses over the reason for Sir Clifford’s non-attendance and seeks to minimize the importance of this development – saying that the opening of Parliament is a “largely ceremonial affair”.

Sure… it is full of pomp and is “largely ceremonial”, but at its heart the G-G’s role is foundational to our system of government for without the Governor General opening Parliament, our elected members do not form a legal body that is able to pass legislation.

Also, as much as the republicans hate to hear it, the Governor General is the last line of legal defense for democracy in Barbados. Because we have a Governor General, any despot would have to act illegally to seize power or to dispense with the rights of our elected members.

So the Governor-General is vital to the opening of Parliament and that is why a retired justice is standing in. All legal… but raising so many questions that the Barbados news media is ignoring.

Could It Be About The Secret Order In Council?

Back in September of 2007, multiple sources told of the BLP Government’s implementation of a secret Order in Council to enable the tapping of phones and interception of internet communications without going through Parliament. (See BFP’s Secret Order In Council Cancels Privacy Rights – Invokes Executive Powers – Barbados Government Takes The First Step Towards The Abyss)

Governor-General Sir Clifford Husbands may have been a party to that Order in Council. He should have been in order to put a veneer of legality upon the government’s actions.

Is this why the Governor-General is “indisposed” now? Has Prime Minister Thompson made his displeasure with Sir Clifford known to Her Majesty? Has this “indisposed” excuse been adopted as the the face-saving solution for our country? Will a new Governor-General be appointed soon? Is Sir Clifford in poor health and unable to carry out the duties of the Governor-General? Is he on holiday out of the country? Does he have the flu?

We don’t like the lack of transparency about this development because is smacks of the Machiavellian contortions of the last BLP administration.

The people of Barbados deserve to know the truth about why Sir Clifford will not be opening Parliament – but we obviously can’t rely upon Albert Brandford and the “professional” Barbados news media to provide us with the truth.

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Filed under Barbados, Politics

Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association To Beg Police For Action

Begging The Police To Do The Job They Should Have Already Been Doing…

The headline in the Barbados Advocate doesn’t put it quite that way. It throws a positive spin on the story by announcing “Tourism Officials, Police To Meet“.

Uh huh.

Go ahead and read the story at the Advocate. Go ahead… take a minute. We’ll wait. If the story has been removed at the Barbados Advocate (they do that ya know) you can read it at the end of this page.

Back now? Ok, good.

Here’s what we got from the story without even going to our police source…

1/ There is no established regular joint committee and action plan between the police and the most important foundation of our economy: the tourism industry. The question occurs to us: “What the hell have the police and the BHTA been doing for the past ten years? Why wasn’t this done a decade ago?”

2/ The BHTA throws a bone to the existing “Liaison Officer” Inspector Jeffrey Howell, who, they say, “has done an outstanding job, keeping the lines of communication open”

Uh huh.

Firstly, communication “lines open” is a euphemism for “no work was ever done but the police inspector is available to whine to if you have five minutes and don’t expect any action more than talking.”

Secondly, if things are so wonderful with the “lines of communication”, why is the tourism industry begging to meet with the Commissioner? Answer… they hope to have the police actually do something.

3/ The Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association are worried sick about specific recent incidents and crime in general. They went to the police to ask for a meeting as a first step to waking the police up and perhaps getting some action.

4/ No date has been set for a meeting, but the BHTA has made the announcement because now the Police Commissioner will at least have to meet with the industry – or look like a total idiot. Like we said, why hasn’t Commissioner Dottin been meeting regularly – say quarterly – with the tourism industry for many years?

5/ The Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association members are willing to pay money to get the police to do their job. Hey, I guess they figure they have to sweeten the pot to get the Commissioner to “consent to meet”. Have you ever heard such fawning crawl-on-the-belly language before? Like we said, the Commissioner of Police and the BHTA should have been holding regular high-level meetings for years.

Reminder to Commissioner Dottin: tourism is only about 75% of the whole economy, you know!

6/ The recent “attack on tourists that shall only be whispered about with no details given in the local media”* upset the British High Commission so much that Police Commissioner Dottin met with the Brits to “allay their fears”. Apparently only one British newspaper carried the story of the attack and the BHTA considers that to be a good thing.

7/ The Executive President of the BHTA, Sue Springer, is so well served by those “open lines of communication” with the police that she apparently doesn’t know if the police and the Barbados Defense Force are still conducting joint patrols in high-crime areas.

… OR Ms. Springer knows that the patrols have been discontinued and she wants them reinstated without embarrassing the police.

Yup… typical Bajan politics at play here: HUGE NEWS STORY: PEOPLE GONNA MEET TO TALK!!!!

Uh huh.

* For those who might be interested, a Safari tour vehicle with cruise ship passengers was ambushed by gunmen last week. Shots fired. Running shoot-out with the police and nobody arrested yet that we’ve read about in the news media. Anyone have any further details, sing out!

Here is a copy of the article from the Barbados Advocate…

Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Crime & Law, Traveling and Tourism