Daily Archives: March 31, 2007

A Barbados Slave – “I Now Wished For The Last Friend, Death, To Relieve Me…”

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“I was soon put down under the decks … with the loathsomeness of the stench and crying together, I became so sick and low that I was not able to eat, nor had I the least desire to taste anything. I now wished for the last friend, death, to relieve me…” – From the book … The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, or Gustavus Vassa, the African

Friends, it is the weekend and although some of us have to work, most of our readers will have some time off in the next two days.

I urge you to read the full piece from a blogger who attended Westminster Abbey on March 27th for the national service to commemorate the abolition of slavery act. The story the Nigerian-born Barbados slave Olaudah Equiano is included in the article along with many other historical and contemporary references.

Grab a cup of coffee or a beer, sit down and take some time. It is worth it…

The Daily Barnabas Blog: Bicentenary of Slave Trade Abolition

Here is an excerpt from the middle of the article that talks about Toyin Agbetu – the fellow who interrupted the service by shouting at the Queen – but you really should read the entire article…

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Understandably, but sadly, the bicentenary of the Act of Parliament to abolish the transatlantic slave trade has stirred up a great deal of controversy and ill feeling. Different groups are using the occasion to push particular agendas, and it is all too easy to forget that slavery destroyed the lives of real human beings, of families, villages, whole societies.

We may not know the names of most of those who were enslaved – in fact, they were dehumanised by being given numbers or, sometimes, the names of kings and emperors (Olaudah Equiano, for example, had several names at different times, including Gustavus Vasa, the name of a Swedish king) – but each and every one of them was someone’s son or daughter or mother or father, filled with the gems of God-given talents and capacities, spiritual, moral and intellectual.

I felt Toyin Agbetu’s rage. It swept through the solemnity of the commemoration service in the Abbey like a gale through a forest. Whatever one thinks of his beliefs and his choice of a time and place to express his anger, there was no denying his rage.

Did Mr Agbetu achieve anything to improve the lot of Africa and Africans? I doubt it. But we learned something very different from him than we do from the likes of Bob Geldof and other white Europeans who are moved to raise funds and “do good” in Africa.

I am determined to learn more about this episode in history and to come to a deeper understanding of slavery and the slave trade…

… excerpt from The Daily Barnabas Blog: Bicentenary of Slave Trade Abolition

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40 Comments

Filed under Africa, Barbados, History, Slavery

Cricket World Cup Starting To Distribute Free Tickets – Lots And Lots Of Free Tickets

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We Heard It Was Happening – Now CWC Has Admitted It

Oh Oh! … Antigua Stadium Has Been At 42% Capacity For Last Two Games

We told you they would move Heaven and earth to fill those stadiums.

Hey… what about the hundreds and hundreds of dollars I spent buying tickets to Cricket World Cup? What about the fact that I wanted tickets to the finals, but had to buy a package of tickets to games I didn’t want to see?

What about all that money I spent on tickets?

Boy… do I feel like a real sucker now…

Organisers To Give Free World Cup Tickets Away

In an effort to boost attendance for the second round matches, World Cup organisers are distributing 500 free tickets for the Australia-Bangladesh match Saturday.

The free tickets are part of an initiative between the Local Organising Committee and the World Cup West Indies committee.

Another 1,300 tickets will be made available to the Antiguan government to use ‘in a manner it sees fit’, George Goodwin, managing director and chief executive officer of the World Cup Antigua Inc (WCAI), said Friday.

He said the free tickets would be distributed to youth clubs and national youth teams.

An average of 7,500 patrons turned out to watch the first two games involving the West Indies, Australia and New Zealand over the past three days.

The Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground has a permanent capacity of 10,000 while the temporary stands can accommodate a further 8,000.

Goodwin said WCAI and the World Cup organisers agreed on the initiative Thursday night after the West Indies played their two matches here.

He said there would be other programmes to boost attendance for the other matches.

Goodwin admitted that the free ticket initiative would not have materialised if patrons had brought out all available tickets. ‘The optimism was that all of the stadiums would be filled,’ he said.

… read the original article at World Cup Web.com (link here)

And In Jamaica…

CWC Local Sponsors Happy Despite Small Number Of Visitors (The Jamaica Observer)

Although the number of visitors to the island for the ICC Cricket World Cup (CWC) has not met the expectations of the organisers, the four local sponsors spending hundreds of millions of dollars are nonetheless upbeat about what they say are tremendous long-term benefits to be gained from the event.

Minister of tourism Aloun Assamba last week expressed disappointment at the low number of visitors Jamaica received during the World Cup, resulting in the cancellation of at least one event.

“Certainly, I don’t think we have got as many persons as I would have wanted us to get, that is the truth. I had hoped that we would have gotten more visitors,” Assamba said in an interview with the Business Observer.

But despite the scarcity of tourists, executives of sponsors Cable and Wireless, Pepsi, Scotiabank and Red Stripe were last week sanguine about their participation in the premier world cricketing event…

… continue reading this story at The Jamaica Observer (link here

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Cricket, Politics & Corruption, Traveling and Tourism

BFP Reader Responds To Nation News Editorial “Public Life In Perspective”

Barbados Free Press reader Sean Gooding just sent us this response to The Nation News’ editorial Public Life In Perspective“…

A Response To Nation News Editorial “Public Life In Perspective”

Does the writer of that article and the journalists of Barbados not see a need state a case for integrity legislation in this country? As member of the public I believe I have EVERY right to know how every elected official derives his income and what his liabilities are. Further I have every right to know how much political parties receive in contributions. This is information the public NEEDS to know.

Let us not fool ourselves any longer. The culture of this country is such that favours are part and parcel of our every day society. Who has not tried to get special treatment or call in a favour from a friend we know at the bank, airport customs or any variety of ministries. Reason, Logic and commonsense dictates these things happen at all strata of society in every country in the world, are we in Barbados are exceptions. Fraud happens everywhere in the world, are we exceptions?

The press are supposed to be the watchdogs and if they have seen fit to correctly question the legitimacy of personal attacks and innuendos I would hope they similarly put forward strong cases for the release of finanical information from all elected officials. I consider it a farce that I can go on the internet and find out how much Dick Cheney pays in taxes from an offical website (www.whitehouse.gov) but I cannot obtain the same information on any political figure in my own
country.

What is more ridiculous is people in this country do not recognise the need for these things.

I am saddened that the current state of journalism in this country seems impotent to investigate any matter beyond a superficial scratch.

Sean Gooding

Editor’s Note: The time from the receipt of this email from Mr. Gooding to posting it on the internet… 9 minutes. Let’s see the traditional old media beat that!

Robert  🙂

27 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Barbados News & Media, Politics & Corruption

Nation News Editorial Again Slams Talk Show Journalist David Ellis And Laments “Opening The Airwaves To The Public”

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Nation News Again Shows True Lapdog Colours

A new editorial by The Nation News laments the fact that those damn Bajan public citizens have access to the open airwaves of talk radio. (link here)

Can’t have the citizens actually talking to each other about integrity and accountability in public! Not according to The Nation News, anyway.

The editorial also talks about “malicious intrusion into the personal lives of politicians” by that enemy of the lapdog journalism, David Ellis of Brass Tacks – and praises Minister of Transport Noel Lynch for running away from the radio audience.

The editorial does not mention the words “conflicts of interest”, “transparency”, “freedom of information”, “integrity legislation” or anything to do with the public’s right to hold elected and appointed officials accountable for how they administer the millions of tax dollars under their control.

Yup – this new attack upon a Bajan journalist also doesn’t mention the three-quarters of a million dollars that the Prime Minister admits he deposited into his personal bank account. (BFP story here)

The Nation News quickly dropped that story without so much as asking the PM about the “campaign donation” cheques he has personally received – but that’s OK…

… Barbados already knows exactly where the loyalties of The Nation News are directed.

The Nation News doesn’t believe that Barbadians should ever ask the following questions of Minister Lynch or any other politician…

Dear Minister Lynch:

1/ How much money and other assets did you have before you entered government service?

2/ How much do you have now?

3/ It is apparent from your lifestyle and visible assets that your net worth is in the millions of dollars… where did you get it?

38 Comments

Filed under Barbados, News Media, Politics & Corruption