Tag Archives: Freedom Of Information

LIAT Statement On Barbados Free Press Blog Post

DHC-8-300 Dash 8 LIAT V2-LGI

LIAT Statement On Barbados Free Press Blog Post

ST. JOHN’S, Antigua, Jan 21 2014 – LIAT (1974) Ltd. has taken note of the post, dated 17th January 2014, in the Barbados Free Press online blog of an Article entitled “Report of Conflict of Interest: Saint Vincent PM Ralph Gonsalves said to own 2 LIAT aircraft”.

The anonymous author concludes that “The conflict of interest arises because SVG is one of the major shareholders in LIAT. Government funds are involved and Prime Minister Gonsalves is heavily involved in decision making about the airline”.

The two aircraft mentioned in the article are owned by a publicly listed US based Leasing Company trading on the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE). LIAT has always had arms length negotiations with this Lessor and its relationship with this Lessor is firmly set on a commercial basis. LIAT has no Aircraft Leases with Prime Minister Gonsalves or any shareholder of the Company and categorically denies the suggestion that the Prime Minister has anything to do with the leasing of aircraft to LIAT. LIAT views conflict of interest very seriously and abides by principles of good corporate governance.   Continue reading

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Filed under Aviation, Barbados, Freedom Of Information, Freedom Of The Press, Politics

Dirty politics in Barbados? Sex Video said to be a well-known politician… but it’s not him

1 Barbados Sex Video

At least, we don’t think it’s him…

In the past few days eight readers have sent us a sex video that is supposed to involve a well-known Bajan politician having an excellent time with a woman not his wife.

Wuhloss! Who would have imagined such a relationship could happen on this rock?

After a thorough examination of the video, several times, with rum and beers in hand, your committee of Barbados Free Press editors and staff concluded that it sure looks like you-know-who, but it’s not. At least, we don’t think it’s him.

But that leads us to the next question: Who created or discovered a slightly-blurred sex video that looks like a Barbados politician but isn’t really? Who sent it around and put it up on the chat groups with his name? Was it done with a hidden camera? It looks that way!

Why it was done is an easy question to answer, and we’re not going to mention which party might have done it. *** (We’ve changed our minds… see the end of this post.)

All we can say is, politics is a dirty game everywhere, but especially in Barbados where there are no rules about conflicts of interest, there are no procurement standards for spending government money, and there is no Freedom of Information Act that would at least give citizens a hope of finding out the truth.

Do you want to clean up politics in Barbados? We have to start by stopping the feed at the piggy trough. Being elected shouldn’t be a guarantee of becoming a millionaire, but that’s the way it is ’bout hey.

As long as the rewards of being elected are that large, and the chances of being caught so small, the politicians of both parties will continue to use every dirty trick to discredit others and to get themselves elected to the piggy trough.

Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Freedom Of Information, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Court issues order: Afra Raymond can drag stonewalling Trinidad government before Judicial Review

FOI Order Trinidad

Tough guy, that Afra Raymond. Won’t take “NO!” for an answer from a government that doesn’t think it needs to obey the Freedom of Information laws.

They fired Afra from where they could in the news media and thought he’d go away – but still he walks on in search of the truth. They tried ignoring him and now he’s gone to court and obtained an order when most people thought he couldn’t.

Yup, this is getting even curiouser and curiouser!

Order granting leave to file judicial review in Afra Raymond vs Ministry of Finance and the Economy.

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Filed under Freedom Of Information, Trinidad and Tobago

CL Financial scandal: Government ignores Freedom of Information request, Activist heads to court

CL-Financial-Fraud

At least Trinidad and Tobago has a Freedom of Information law!

What is being pursued here is our right as citizens of a modern republic to the details of these huge expenditures of Public Money – the CL Financial bailout is costing some $24Bn, about $3.5Bn USD! – and the background to how critical legislative support is obtained.  It is my view that S.34 was not the first time and that the spectre of ‘regulatory capture’, which underlines much of the discourse around the Great Depression 2, is in fact founded on a sinister degree of ‘legislative capture’.

Having had a series of ‘cat and mouse’ exchanges with the Ministry of Finance since my Freedom of Information Act application made on 11 May 2012, this is my pre-action protocol letter sent to them by my attorney on Thursday 7 March, seeking their proper reply in 7 days…that time expires at midnight today, Wednesday 13 March.

So stay tuned, because we are going to the High Court after that…

Afra Raymond

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Filed under Freedom Of Information, Trinidad and Tobago

Kammie Holder: Can government be trusted? The need for Freedom of Information in Barbados

It is a shame that Kammie Holder did not run as an independent candidate this time around – because he’s just what Barbados needs: someone who genuinely cares about this country and the people yet hasn’t a bit of desire to be a professional politician.

Next time… Kammie please run!

Further Reading

For a list of Kammie Holder’s previous articles at Barbados Free Press see here

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Filed under Barbados, Political Corruption, Politics

International Press Institute reports how Barbados politicians lied about Integrity Legislation, Freedom of Information, Defamation law changes

Prime Minister Freundel Stuart and his DLP promised Integrity Legislation. They lied. That was a slimy thing to do!

UPDATED: January 22, 2013 (pinned to top. scroll down for newer)

Have another read of this folks and remember that the promised Integrity Legislation will not become law before the next election.

Time to vote for ANY INDEPENDENT!

Here’s our original story first published October 15, 2012….

Lying corrupt DLP, BLP politicians will not pass Integrity Legislation

The just-released International Press Institute report on Barbados tells the sad history of how the DLP – Democratic Labour Party lied about Integrity Legislation just to get elected. The report is dated last June, 2012 and now that we are well into the political campaign for the next election we know the truth: there will be no Integrity Legislation put forward by the governing DLP. It was all a sham to get elected in 2008.

“The government and the population know that Barbados’ Defamation Act is a relic of the colonial past and that it hinders freedom of expression. IPI believes that when the country’s politicians are aware of the situation and have already attempted to change it, half of the work is done. We are optimistic that there is still enough time before the January 2013 elections to implement the new legislation.

While several news outlets now say that the people in Barbados were misled and that the Freedom of Information, Defamation and Integrity Legislation is an outstanding debt, IPI believes that public opinion can be changed. Barbados’ leaders have the opportunity not only to change these reports, but also to make history, as those who make this decision will have ushered in a more free, transparent, and democratic country.”

… the last two paragraphs of the Report on the IPI Advocacy Mission to End Criminal Defamation in Barbados (PDF here)

Former BLP Attorney General confirms no plans for Integrity Legislation

Barbadian voters remember former BLP Attorney General Dale Marshall as the one who hilariously gave a clean bill of health to VECO’s operations in Barbados after a 25 minute conversation with representatives of the company. This was after a series of scandals showed that Alaska-based VECO used bribery of politicians as a standard operating procedure to obtain government contracts.

The Owen Arthur led BLP government awarded VECO the contract for the new Dodds Prison even though the company had never built a prison before. Everything was done in secret and that’s the way Dale Marshall, Owen Arthur, Mia Mottley and the BLP like it. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Freedom Of Information, Freedom Of The Press, Political Corruption, Politics & Corruption

WE TOLD YOU SO: Anti-Corruption legislation buried in dark hole

During the 2007 election campaign, the Democratic Labour Party promised to introduce Integrity Legislation and a Freedom of Information Act within 100 days of taking office. They put that in writing in Pathways to Progress, in press handouts and in newsletters and emails.

The DLP also promised to introduce a Ministerial Code of Conduct immediately upon taking office. They put that in writing too.

“Hello BFP folks…

The Ministerial Code takes effect immediately after a DLP government is elected. The Freedom of Information Act and Integrity legislation will be dealt with in the first 100 days in office…

Best regards
Reudon Eversley
Communications Director
DLP General Election Campaign 2008″

The DLP Lied

David Thompson lied about it. Freundel Stuart lied about it. Every DLP candidate lied about it.

You can say that the electorate was naive or ready to believe the DLP lies about Integrity Legislation because after 14 years of BLP corruption we were desperate. You can say the electorate was ready to be deceived, but it doesn’t matter.

We believed the DLP. We truly did. We had faith in the DLP candidates as people. We elected the DLP candidates and leadership because we believed their promises. We believed IN the DLP candidates as people of their word.

The DLP promises about what we called “ITAL” – Integrity, Transparency and Accountability Legislation – were a big part of why Bajans elected a DLP government. That much was admitted at the time in the news media and in comments from foreign observers.

It has been over four years since those promises were made, and three years and seven months since the DLP Government took office and immediately broke their first promise by not implementing a Ministerial Code of Conduct on the first day.

Now we read in The Nation “The Barbados Private Sector Association (BPSA) wants Government to move quickly to redraft the Prevention of Corruption Bill, 2010 and get it back on the front burner” within six months.

DLP Strategy to make Integrity Legislation fail

We at Barbados Free Press earlier said that the inclusion of the private sector in the proposed Integrity Legislation was a DLP strategy to cause the legislation to fail, so they could blame it on the private sector. We said back in October, 2009…

A DLP insider reveals how David Thompson and his gang intend to sabotage Integrity Legislation and Freedom of Information laws by expanding the promised laws to include private citizens and corporations.

This, of course, will throw a spanner into the works of any legislation. After if fails to pass due to public outcry, Thompson and his fellow piggies at the public trough will say, “Well, we tried our best.”

…from the BFP post Prime Minister Thompson’s new strategy for avoiding Integrity Legislation, FOI: “Private sector must be included in this legislation”

We also said that the DLP would delay the Integrity Legislation until just before the next election, so they could blame the BLP opposition for shooting it down or delaying it. That way the DLP would get to use Integrity Legislation for two election campaigns in a row while retaining all the benefits of not having the legislation in place while they are in government. A neat trick if they can pull it off.

It looks like we were correct. That’s unfortunate because we would rather have been proven wrong.

Member of Parliament William Duguid “No Barbados politicians will vote for Integrity Legislation”

It’s also unfortunate that the only politician who told the truth about the Integrity Legislation and Freedom of Information was the Barbados Labour Party’s William Duguid, who was quoted on another blog saying that Integrity Legislation will never happen because no politicians of any party will ever vote for it. Duguid is moving to Canada so it doesn’t matter to him anymore if he speaks the truth.

Welcome to Barbados folks! Same old, same old ’bout hey. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Ethics, Freedom Of Information, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption