Tag Archives: Owen Arthur

Dominica PM talks about Owen Arthur’s no show at DLP conference

Editor’s note: Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit explains what happened to Owen Arthur, who cancelled his scheduled talk to the DLP delegates conference at the last moment. (also see BFP’s post Is Owen Arthur healthy enough to be Prime Minister?)

Comrades and friends good afternoon! It is truly good to be here in St. Joseph today!

It is an honor to have so revered a political thinker in Peter Wickham as our Guest Speaker. I wish to thank him once again for stepping in at such short notice to fill the slot created due to the unavoidable absence of Mr. Owen Arthur, former Prime Minister of Barbados.

Incidentally, Mr. Arthur has asked that I convey to this Conference his very best wishes and sincere apologies for cancelling at the last moment. Personal issues triggered the cancellation but he has insisted that he be provided an opportunity in the very near future to fellowship with the Dominica Labour Party.

To this end, we will be organizing a public forum for sometime next month at which Mr. Arthur has consented to speak and reflect on issues of importance to residents of Dominica and other Caribbean nationals. We in the Dominica Labour Party look forward to that occasion and opportunity…

… continue reading Prime Minister Skerrit’s speech at Dominica News Online

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Is Owen Arthur healthy enough to be Prime Minister?

Last minute cancellation of public appearance sparks more health talk

Owen Arthur’s last minute cancellation of a weekend speaking engagement in Dominica has the rumour mill working overtime. The official reason for the cancellation as provided by the Dominica Labour Party is that Arthur “cancelled at the last minute for personal reasons.”

Some speculate that Arthur bowed out because Dominica’s Democratic Freedom Party put pressure on him, but many don’t buy that because it’s not like Arthur to misjudge the politics that badly – and it’s not like Arthur to let himself be pushed around and embarrassed. No Sir. The Owen Arthur we know would not be deterred by the DFP objection and would probably view it as a challenge to be met head-on. It’s not like Arthur to agree to a speaking engagement without considering the politics, and once committed it is not like Owen Arthur to then run from a public appearance because somebody objects.

Missing in action: the Owen Arthur spark!

For most observers, once you put aside a political causes for Arthur cancelling, the immediate thought is his health.

It is true that Arthur hasn’t been looking well at all in the last year. He seems dramatically smaller, slower and older – and this happened in a relatively short period of time. He stoops and sometime walks with a cane when only two years ago he would rocket up steps two at a time – drunk or sober. Now he shuffles about without the spark that defined his personality and physical appearances in public for three decades. You’ll have a difficult time finding a recent photo of the Opposition leader, because for some reason the local media prefers to use file photos from two years ago.

The physical also impacts one’s outlook on life and capacity for work: and Arthur has been missing in action more often than not at Parliament and party functions. His total failure to lead the BLP charge during the recent Employment Rights Bill is an indication that something is seriously wrong either with Owen Arthur’s political judgment or his health.

Once again, he’s just not the Owen Arthur that we know, or thought we knew. What happened? Could it be… Continue reading

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Owen Arthur’s legacy of High Debt killing Barbados.

Contributed by an anonymous DLP supporter

As Barbados celebrates its 45th birthday of Independence, it is clear that Owen Arthur’s legacy of high debt, accumulated during times of plenty – is now killing our country. That explains why the announcement from the Barbados Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BCCI) that he (Opposition Leader Owen Arthur) would have been addressing its luncheon on November 24th – became “big new” and for a number of reasons. That announcement was coming less than a month after Owen Arthur had spoken at his Party’s Annual Conference.

Pray tell: what new or important could he possibly have had to say?

Secondly, given the topic he was expected to speak on, it would have been bizarre, to say the least, for a man who was Prime Minister and Minister of Finance of Barbados for fourteen years, to be now talking about “change” or the need to implement anything, especially when he would have had more than amply time and more time than anybody else in the history of this country, to restructure the Barbados economy; find new economic sectors as well as a new development model – but did not. Continue reading

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Illegal moves, dirty tricks by Owen Arthur supporters defeat Mia Mottley for now

Mia Mottley withdraws from BLP Chairman race

“Yes, Mia is justifiably outraged at the abuse of democracy and the disregard for the BLP Constitution – but her outrage is selective and selfish. Where was her outrage when her BLP government habitually ignored the rule of law?”

This October 18th marks the first year since power-hungry opportunists ousted Mia Mottley as Leader of the Opposition. Owen Arthur and his wild boys thought they had driven a political stake through the enemy’s heart, but then four months ago Mottley announced she would run for the position of BLP Chairman.

That sent Owen Arthur’s gang crazy. Not to mention that an independent poll found the vast majority of BLP members wanted Mia Mottley as leader over Arthur. In a one person / one vote contest Owen Arthur would be given his walking papers. What was Arthur to do?

For Arthur and his wild boys, the decision was simple: they would just illegally change the rules before the upcoming BLP Conference.

It didn’t matter that the BLP Constitution prohibits the declaration of new rules until the membership ratifies the changes. It didn’t matter that none of the general membership knew about the changes until they were a done deal. Welcome to Barbados – where rules and laws are mere tools to be wielded or ignored by those in power.

Any Bajan knows that when rules or the law stands in the way of those who have power, they do what they want anyway. That is part of the reality on this island. Rule of Law is a stranger in this country and that is the truth.

Mia Mottley is no stranger to ignoring, bending or changing the rules

In her current circumstances Mia is crying victim and warning about the abuse of democracy. She is correct, of course, but how soon she has forgotten that when she was the Attorney General with the full power of a majority government, the BLP changed the Barbados Constitution at the drop of a hat with zero public discussion. Mottley chooses not to remember that her government expropriated private lands with wild abandon and often never paid for those lands. That’s called theft – but not when you are in power.

And when some of those expropriated lands ended up in the hands of government ministers or their family members and friends – Mottley didn’t see anything wrong with that at the time.

Yes, Mia is justifiably outraged at the abuse of democracy and the disregard for the BLP Constitution – but her outrage is selective and selfish. Where was her outrage when her BLP government habitually ignored the rule of law?

Press Release by Mia Mottley, MP

On May 22rd this year, I announced my intention to contest the post of Chairman of the Barbados Labour Party. I made it clear that I was running on a platform to secure for every member of our Party the right that all Members of Parliament enjoy – to participate and vote at our Annual Conference, our highest decision-making body.

In 1951, the Right Excellent Sir Grantley Adams fought for and won the right for every adult Barbadian to vote. On this 60th anniversary of that momentous victory for Barbadian democracy it is only fitting that his Party, our Party, should enhance our own internal democracy by ensuring that every member has the right to vote. Indeed, this is consistent with section 11 of the BLP Constitution, which states as follows:-

“The purpose of this Constitution is to provide for procedures and practices which are democratic and efficient to the end that all Barbados Labour Party members may participate meaningfully and effectively in the deliberations and activities of the party.”

Last Thursday, I received an email from the General Secretary and also a communication from the Secretary of my Constituency Branch regarding new Standing Orders for the Annual Party Conference issued by the National Council. Neither of the two communications indicated when the National Council ratified these Standing Orders.

While the National Council has the power to propose Standing Orders to the Annual Conference and any Special Conference, it does not have the power to ratify them in advance of the Conference. It is appalling that it has acted in this manner. In so doing it has reduced the rights of women and young people in the Party by forcing them to now choose if they want to be members of a Branch or the Women’s League or Young Socialists respectively. Continue reading

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Christopher Sinckler’s success can determine Owen Arthur’s political future

“Arthur knows that if Sinckler gets it right, as Minister of Finance, especially coming out of what many regard as the second worst global economic crisis in history – then Owen Arthur’s allege grip loosens and he immediately becomes even more irrelevant to a rapidly changing Barbados.” 

Submitted anonymously through France!

Based on the advice from Prime Minister Stuart, it is better to explain a man than to waste time criticising him.  Politics in Barbados has become predictable.  You can expect Owen Arthur to give the impression that only he can run the Barbados economy.  You can expect him to repeat himself over and over, even as he alleges that the economy is worsening.  He can be expected to criticise Finance Minister Christopher Sinckler, who is merely trying to fix some of the very problems, which were manufactured during Owen Arthur’s tenure.  And, you can expect Owen Arthur to spend every passing day trying to give the impression that Minister Sinckler does not know what he is doing. Continue reading

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Approaching one year since BLP power-hungry opportunists ousted Mia Mottley

October 18th is the 1st Anniversary of the plot

Our friend Ian Bourne says that Owen Arthur is “under tremendous pressure to ensure he attracts more people” to public meetings than Mia Mottley did when she was BLP leader.

Unfortunately for Goin wid Owen, folks remember that as Leader of the Opposition, Mia Mottley attracted THOUSANDS to her meetings. That’s just not the case now with Mr. Arthur who often finds himself talking to more empty chairs than people. Some of his backroom advisors are getting a little nervous and well they should.

“In our opinion, Prime Minister Freundel Stuart doesn’t have to win the next election: he just has to wait for Owen Arthur to lose it.”

Bajan Reporter is thinking much the same thing…

“When Owen Arthur, George Payne, Dale Marshall and Jerome Walcott travelled to the Ermie Bourne Centre at Hillaby St. Andrew, on Sunday, August 28th 2011 for a meeting – they succeeded in doing three things. With the first anniversary approaching, they gave Barbadians another opportunity to see the chief architects of the plan, who ousted Mia Mottley as Barbados’ first female Leader of the Opposition, on October 18th 2010…”

“…What is the BLP’s cause now and what is its message? It simply cannot be that the BLP wants to form the Government! BLP members must not allow themselves to get “accidental false hope” deliberately. Even if the DLP was losing popularity, that would not result in an automatic electoral victory for the BLP.”

Excellent analysis and a worthwhile read at Bajan Reporter’s post: Barbados Labour Party Wrestling With Its Shadow And Bajans Shake Their Head in Utter Disbelief

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Mia Mottley trying to stamp out corruption within the BLP Barbados Labour Party

“You do not have to be a rocket-scientist to realise that Mia Mottley seems to be trying to stamp-out corruption within the BLP but that decision has placed her squarely on a collision course with the old-boys club and the very persons who are responsible for the corruption.”

Can “One man, one vote” stamp-out BLP corruption?

by “O”

As an independent observer, I think Sunday Sun Columnist Albert Brandford might have got it all wrong this week (see his column: Sunday Sun, June 5, 2011). I now clearly understand why Social Media has ruled Traditional Media, obsolete. Social Media, for the most part, is being driven by young people: a new generation, who have found an innovative way to communicate, which seems to have given them the freedom of expression, they are comfortable with. This is a new generation who are not willing to turn a-blind-eye towards corruption. Mia Mottley therefore seems aware that going into the next election, the BLP will have a major problem! Continue reading

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Arthur’s BLP in Crisis – Chaos as Mottley faction bows out

“Walking away from BLP…”

UPDATED: September 20, 2011

Dear Barbados Free Press,

I’m walking away from the BLP because I am disgusted with how the party is treating Mia Mottley. I’m not going to the DLP, I’m not going anywhere. I’m going to sit out the next election. When they call I’m busy and I will be missed because I’ve worked every campaign since 1988.

Walking Woman

(The above was originally left as a comment on this post – which we will pin to the top for a few days. Scroll down for newer items.)

Original post…

Press excluded & empty chairs at some recent BLP meetings

If an election is called tomorrow, the Barbados Labour Party would be firing on about half cylinders because a huge portion of its membership, and many women, will not take a part in any election activities while Owen Arthur and his “gang” are still at the helm. Party insiders tell BFP that there is a desire by many to take revenge over last October’s coup by former Prime Minister Owen Arthur that saw then BLP leader Mia Mottley summarily ejected.

“Let Owen get beaten to a pulp in the next election, then Mia can return to rescue the party,” said one long time BLP voter who was not a particular Mottley supporter prior to her ouster.

It seems that the way in which Mottley was cast aside has increased her support.

Oh very yes – revenge is a plate best served cold. Mia might take a long time to prepare the meal, but it will be served upon Owen’s table.

Give me money, that’s what I want…

Internal party politics is not the only thing holding back the BLP: the party is desperately short of funds to the extent that some insiders are quietly talking about asking Mr. Arthur to personally fund a portion of the upcoming election campaign. For some reason folks think Mr. Arthur is capable of “giving back” to the party as one source told this blogger. A recent attempt by Owen Arthur to blame Mia Mottley for the shortage of funds fell flat with many pointing the finger at Arthur for failing to put reserves in place during the fat years. (The phrase “spending like a drunken sailor” comes to mind.) Continue reading

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Barbados Labour Party website shows Mia Mottley and her supporters again

Leadership battle to resume after election?

Last November, the 72nd annual BLP Conference ended with walkouts and tears as Mottley supporters and other vexed members removed their support from the party over the return of Owen Arthur as ‘leader’.

From September through December, Bajans watched with amusement as the leadership battle showed up on the internet. Eight weeks after Owen Arthur led a coup against Mia Mottley, the BLP website still showed Mottley as leader – with Owen Arthur nowhere to be seen.

A source informed us that Mottley supporters refused to surrender the website passwords to the new leadership. Then, when the Arthur faction finally gained control of the websites in December, they did a tit for tat and the BLP website dumped all mention of Mia Mottley and the MPs who supported her.

What fun!

Now all is apparently forgiven as the BLP tries to present a unified appearance to voters and its own members. The Nation says

“Former Opposition Leader, Mia Mottley, will join Owen Arthur, George Payne, Dale Marshall and the rest of her Barbados Labour Party (BLP) colleagues on the election platform in St. John, during the coming week.”

Hmmmmmm. That’s a little ambiguous. Does this mean that Mottley and Arthur will appear together on a stage or merely that everybody will campaign for Hudson Griffith? One thing is for sure: whatever happy face the BLP puts on for the St. John by-election, the Mottley-Arthur punch-up will resume the day after the vote.

After the by-election the fight may be carried on in private with only occasional indications in public, but Mia is only 45 years old and Mr. Arthur is just plain old.

Remember folks, it’s not over until the uh, well… it’s not over until somebody sings!

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St. John by-election January 20, 2011 – Will Mara run for David’s seat?

Mara Thompson probably will, but where is Owen Arthur?

Governor General Sir Clifford Husbands dropped the writ today for St. John. Nomination Day will be January 5th and the vote will be January 20th. The Parliamentary seat has been vacant since the death of Prime Minister David Thompson.

A few observations by Clive, assisted by a goodly tot of Bim’s finest dark…

  • Will Mara Thompson run? I wouldn’t bet against it.
  • If Mara does run, anyone else is fish bait. Even if she doesn’t run, the seat is still safe for the DLP. “BLP sacrificial candidate, please step forward.”
  • Where is Owen Arthur? Memories of when the Cricket World Cup turned into one big rotten fish head, “Goin’ wid Owen” looks like the Invisible Man lately.

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Barbados Labour Party’s internal war continues

Owen Arthur faction declares war: Mia Mottley ejected from BLP website

Will Prime Minister Freundal Stuart call an election with the BLP in chaos?

When Owen Arthur and his pals deposed then-Opposition Leader Mia Mottley last October, did they think the BLP could heal itself and come together in time for a snap election call? If so, it looks like they miscalculated.

As we pointed out during a recent series of articles, it isn’t smooth sailing at the BLP. For two months after Owen Arthur took back the leadership, Mia’s people refused to surrender the passwords to the party’s website and blogs. We’ve heard rumours about some bank accounts too!

What’s happening now?

Ian Bourne is reporting that the Owen Arthur faction of the BLP has now gained control of the domain name for the Barbados Labour Party and they have thrown up a very amateurish website with no mention of Mia Mottley! Tit for tat, I guess.

The BLP blog is likewise looking like the work of an 11 year old with a “Websites for Dummies” book in one hand and Snickers bar in the other.

With chaos and war still raging within the Barbados Labour Party, will Prime Minister Freundal Stuart smell blood in the water and strike now?

The Bajan Reporter has some thoughts in a new story: MIA: Missing In Action? New Barbados Labour Party website does not acknowledge existence of St Michael North East MP

Photoshop by Shona: When Owen declares war, windmills tremble!

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BLP divorcees remember the happy days of new love!

How could love go so bad?

by Nevermind Kurt

It all started when her father introduced the young maiden to his business colleague, the CEO of “BLP Solutions Inc.”  It wasn’t love at first sight, but soon the couple began to appreciate each others’ strengths and weaknesses as they worked together on small projects.

She wasn’t the prettiest thing he’d ever seen, but she was smart and inspired loyalty in customers, employees and management. At times she could be argumentative, even aggressive – but it was only because she was younger and needed experience. The CEO knew that given time and the humility born of a few failures, she would be a superb senior executive.

He tended to drink more at lunch than she was comfortable with. Some mornings he came to work disheveled and stinking of different perfumes – but everybody in the company loved him anyway and so did she. The CEO might be a rogue and occasionally an embarrassment when he got caught using the company funds for personal expenses, but no one could question his drive or the success that he achieved and shared freely with everyone around him.

Yes, the CEO was a crook who raided shareholder equity regularly, but no one could say he was a selfish crook. Continue reading

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CHAOS! BLP website six weeks later: “Mia Amor Mottley, Political Leader of BLP”

Opposition Leader Owen Arthur still not mentioned on Barbados Labour Party website!

Eight days after Barbados Free Press broke the news that the BLP website still proclaims deposed leader Mia Mottley as “Political Leader of BLP”, everything remains the same…

The “real” leader of the Opposition, former Prime Minister Owen Arthur, is not mentioned on the Barbados Labour Party’s official website – and deposed leader Mia Mottley still welcomes visitors as “Political Leader of BLP”.

This is almost six weeks after Owen Arthur led a coup that deposed then-Opposition Leader Mia Mottley and over a week after Barbados Free Press exposed the battle over the BLP’s website.

On November 17, 2010, Barbados Free Press received an anonymous email indicating that the people in charge of the BLP website are refusing to give up the password to Owen Arthur’s team.

It looks like the stand-off continues. How embarrassing! Yet… how indicative of the reality of turmoil within the Barbados Labour Party.

Hey… BLP… Who’s yo daddy?

Or is it “Who’s yo’ mommy?”

When you sort out who is the leader of the BLP, please let Barbados know!

(Hey… BLP… Sucks to be you!)

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Leadership chaos at the Barbados Labour Party

“Has Owen Arthur become so drunk; power-hungry and confused about what is acceptable that despite being a 3-term Prime Minister he would allow himself to be summoned to George Payne’s house in the dead of the night – just to sign a document, which now makes him a puppet leader?”

BLP Buyer’s remorse? Lack of viable options? Normal cut and thrust politics?

ONCE again Barbados Free Press prints an article about the BLP leadership chaos and Owen Arthur’s silence about the vote-rigging. This could be from the same anonymous author as the last Owen Arthur article, but we have no way of knowing because it’s coming to us through the popular Anonymouse.org Proxy in Germany.

Like everything you read at BFP and elsewhere on the internet, take it with a strong shot of rum ‘an doan believe anything without a sober second thought in the morning!

Who wrote this article? What’s the agenda?

Is it written by a Mottley supporter, or by a famous DLP supporter who’d rather see his party face Mottley and not Arthur in the next election?

We don’t know, but after a tonic and pink gin Robert says that some of the phrases are vaguely reminiscent of someone who’s name begins with “H”. Any other guesses from the Cheapside seats?

Ladies and gentlemen, BFP presents this article by an anonymous author…

No magic and after 14 years – no legacy

Despite the feeble attempt at damage control, even the few Owen Arthur supporters who clamored for his return are now having second thoughts. They too are disappointed having heard his un-inspiring address to the 72nd Annual Conference of the BLP over the last weekend. His dwindling support base now realise that if Owen is to impress anyone (which he didn’t last Sunday) then he has to do much better in his up-coming budget response. As I understand it, the buzz in the hive is that Owen Arthur’s speech to the BLP’s 72nd Annual Conference was like watching a horror moving in slow motion. It is being said that the hive dwellers are wondering if there were on Elm Street since what they heard and saw was really a nightmare. Continue reading

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New on Facebook: Bajans against the return of Owen Arthur

No, it’s not us. Honest!

So far over 70 people have had the courage to publicly “like” the new Facebook page and some of the names are very surprising!

We suspect many more “like” it, but wouldn’t want their own FB page linked.

“Having hijacked the BLP Owen Arthur now wants a return to the position of prime minister, a post he held for 14 years until a defeat in 2008 that saw him run from the leadership position of his party.

Bajans aren’t stupid, we don’t want a return to the corrupt politics of Owen Arthur.”

… Facebook page Bajans against the return of Owen Arthur

Ya can’t stop this kind of thing, Owen!

Hey… does anyone know if Owen Arthur has a Facebook page?

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Who has the passwords to the Barbados Labour Party website & blog?

Dear Barbados Free Press,

Regarding your story about the BLP website still showing Mia Mottley as party leader (Barbados Labour Party website: “Mia Amor Mottley, Political Leader of BLP”), I confirm that there is a fight going on over the BLP website. Only 2 people have the password and they aren’t giving it up. That is why the website hasn’t been updated since Owen Arthur took the leadership from Mia.

Your story is up for over 24 hours at the time I’m emailing you. People are getting desperate, but it will take this email being published before the passwords to the website and the blog will be turned over to the current leadership of the BLP.

There is lesson here somewhere.

Yours truly,

One who knows.

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Barbados Labour Party website: “Mia Amor Mottley, Political Leader of BLP”

Screenshot of BLP website taken Monday, November 15, 2010, 3:11pm Bridgetown

Owen Arthur is not shown as Opposition Leader on the BLP website!

One month after former Prime Minister Owen Arthur led a coup that deposed Mia Mottley as the leader of the Barbados Labour Party, and at the end of a disasterous annual conference where Owen Arthur’s faction was accused of vote-rigging, the BLP website welcomes visitors with a photo of Mia Mottley and the words,

“Mia Amor Mottley, Q.C., M.P.

Political Leader of BLP”

This begs the question…

Is the BLP in such disarray that the pro-Mottley faction still has control of the party’s website?

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BLP Conference ends with tears, walkouts. “Mottley’s ousting triggered the implosion of the BLP”

The following was posted anonymously at Barbados Free Press. With the exception of the title and subtitle added by BFP, not one word has been changed. We haven’t any idea where it came from. It may have been published somewhere else. It may not be an original submission. Would the author kindly let us know…

BLP Charts a New Direction – into tears, depression, bullying, arrogance and defiance

The theme was: ‘Charting a New Direction,’ but the 72nd Conference of the Barbados Labour Party ended in anarchy. The general feeling of the delegates who attended was that it was the worst and most disorganized Conference in the party’s 72 year history. Resolutions submitted to the party were not communicated to delegates and naturally the Conference found that horrifying.

The lame excuse of the printer not working was advanced so too the excuse that Branches had submitted Resolutions late. The Conference might have believed that froth until it was explained that the same Resolutions alleged to have been submitted by Branches to party headquarters, late – were actually sent to an Attorney on last Friday for vetting. By then the room was in an uproar. Continue reading

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