Broad Street Journal Asks “Will A Half-Completed Destiny Give Mr. Lynch A Feeling Of Vindication…?”

An Uncertain Destiny

By Patrick Hoyos – Published: April 24, 2007

We are now into the final week of the CWC nightmare, with only the two semis to go (on Tuesday in Jamaica and Wednesday in St. Lucia) and, finally, the final, here on Saturday, 28 April, and co-incidentally, Heroes’ Day in Barbados.

Unfortunately, I doubt whether any modern day heroes will emerge out of the fiasco of this world cup tournament, except of course for the team that wins.

On Tuesday night I saw a news clip in which Barbados’ tourism minister Noel Lynch said that the same Destiny was filling up fast and should reach 50% to 60% occupancy, but I’m not sure if he meant for the last week only, or if that was his new projection for overall bookings during the total rental period of about three weeks.

I thought I heard Mr. Lynch say previously that the ship would be 80% to 90% full, then revise the projection to 40%, so while the higher the percentage the better for us, I guess I will just have to wait for the next projection, as Mr. Lynch really keeps me guessing.

In fact, with so many details about the Carnival Destiny’s revenues still weighing on my mind, the only clear vision I have is that which the government hoped for – a ship overflowing with smiling, happy tourists coming to and going from the games of the world cup. I think they should have chartered the Carnival Fantasy instead.

Another thing I thought I heard Mr. Lynch say (although I might have mis-heard) was that with a 50% to 60% occupancy rate on the Destiny, “We will have the last laugh”.

If I did not hear correctly, let me apologise up front; but if he did say that, I wonder on whom he would have that last laugh. Would it be on those who have openly questioned the cost of chartering so expensive and large a ship at the taxpayers’ expense, and the attendant cost of promoting it overseas by officials of the Barbados Tourism Authority? When were we told that such a massive cost would be undertaken over and above the huge cost of completely rebuilding Kensington Oval and all the additional costs to do with temporary stands, entertaining officials and security for the Barbados matches?

Will a half-completed Destiny give Mr. Lynch a feeling of vindication, an “I told you so!” moment that will nullify any criticism of its chartering?

… continue reading this article at The Broad Street Journal (link here)

33 Comments

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

33 responses to “Broad Street Journal Asks “Will A Half-Completed Destiny Give Mr. Lynch A Feeling Of Vindication…?”

  1. not out

    A refreshing article by Patrick Hoyos. Watch your back Patrick this is Mugabe country, island version. Lynch and his lies are out of this world. The part where he says he will have last laugh is as unbelievable as it is revealing. Lynch and his chums do not understand we are (supposedly) in a democracy. Images of Mugabe again. For Lynch and his kind anyone who questions their rubbish is marked. No work, victimisation and blacklisting will follow. Thats why so many of our journalists are in BLP pocket. Deathly afraid to ask Lynch and BLP questions and always writing pr pieces claiming they are real reportage. The Carnival Destiny wasted a large chunk of taxpayers monies. Lynch lied all the way thru on this matter. He said he knew nothing of $15 millon loan for the empty ship. Now he shifts its occcupancy levels faster than his quickly rising bank account. Excellent piece Hoyos.

  2. Adrian Loveridge

    We had just had our fourth room cancellation for this week.
    Guess Why?
    Our guests, who are currently in St. Lucia, had problems with boarding their booked LIAT flight.
    So they booked to travel on the US$15 million taxpayer subsidised Carnival Destiny which will act as both accommodation and transportation, therefore they will not need their booked rooms.

    OK! The rooms are fully paid for.
    BUT and its a BIG but, they will not buy any drinks at the bar, eat in our restaurant (or any other), rent a car, visit an attraction, take a taxi to the airport, etc. etc.

    So in conclusion taxpayers monies are being used to disadvantage our land based tourism providers and severely reduce overall net revenue to the country.

    So it doesn’t matter to Mr Lynch if we have lots of empty hotel rooms just as long as he fills Carnival Destiny to get up to the ‘80% sold’ figure.

  3. Warrior

    Adrian,

    I wonder if these flights being cancelled on purpose. You know – just to make sure that they sail on the SS 15 mil

  4. reality check

    some poor average little scmuck down on his luck will go to jail for “tiefing” $500 but if it is our entrusted elected officials and the amount has 3, 4, 5 or more O’s behind the number the authority of the state and the judiciary will protect that elected official.

    Something is definitely rotten in Barbados and it not Mount Stinkeroo!

  5. Positive Spin

    Patrick, I read your excellent article and enjoy your objective, factual and insightful reporting. Adrian Loveridge is “on the money” as usual.

    Frankly we need more people like your goodselves who are willing, and able to expose and embarass these charlatans out of office.

    But who will step into the void? We need leadership who put character and integrity above greed and power, least the world comments…

    “Barbados has the finest politicians money can buy”.

  6. anon

    Extract from the Antiguan sun

    Caricom visa hits 40,000 mark

    Thursday April 26 2007

    With Cricket World Cup 2007 in its final week, the Caribbean Community has issued 40,000 Special Visas to visitors to the region.

    Of these, 10,000 visas have been issued in London, United Kingdom, while Australia, Canada, India and the United States have issued between five and six thousand visas each.

    Chairperson of the Caricom Sub Committee on Security for the CWC 2007, and Deputy Prime Minister of Barbados, Mia Mottley said staff at the issuing sites for the visas have worked extremely hard to meet the application demands.

    “To obtain the secure Caricom visa applicants have had to undergo several layers of security screening but as a result of this screening process 1,386 persons were denied entry into the region,” she explained.

    The Barbados deputy prime minister further highlighted that the Caricom Special Visa has been very effective in tackling crime, in particular the battle against human trafficking.

    ‘The regional security platform for this tournament is multi layered, and as such nationals from countries that do not need a visa to enter the Caribbean are still caught in the net once they are flagged as posing a security threat to the region.

    “We are now into the final stages of the CWC 2007, with the final set to bowl off on Saturday, 28 April in Barbados, the security and intelligence personnel will be on red alert to ensure the safety and security of all.”

  7. anon

    why dont we start a separate commentary asking people’s views as to who they think will win the world cup in cricket. dont you think that would be more interesting at this point in time

  8. Get In The Action

    This is such a sad state for our country. David Ellis has been silenced – like a tame lamb since “allowed” back on air. Patrick is now a voice in the wilderness. He is the only journalist brave enough to stand and tell it like it is, both the good and the bad. Keep it up Patrick.

  9. Get In The Action

    Before they had a chance to pack away the stumps yesterday in St. Lucia, Alan Chastenet the new Min. of Tourism was out firing blame at everyone about the low numbers and the CWC failures.

    Murali will control the spin on Saturday, but on Sunday morning it will be interesting to see who will open the real spin bowling. We are about to get bowled away with it over the next month.

  10. Straight talk

    So, Ms Mottley has sold the soul of caribbean cricket to the ICC for 30 pieces of silver.
    Well actually, 40,000 x US$100.
    Her own security plan cost $50,000,000 if one believes press briefings.
    The 40,000 who succumbed to the visa scam were presumably less than half those of the 90,000 reportedly accommodated aboard chartered cruise ships.
    So the question remains – Was it all worth the hype?
    What have we got for forfeiting our beautiful game?
    We have paid, and will continue to pay for a good many years, for an elitist bun feast to which we were unwelcome guests, not hosts.
    W.I. Cricket will never be the same after 2007.

  11. reality check

    “The Barbados deputy prime minister further highlighted that the Caricom Special Visa has been very effective in tackling crime, in particular the battle against human trafficking. ”

    oh this is hilarious!!!

    how about the trafficking of the public’s money into foreign bank accounts

    As if Mia ever cared about human trafficking.

  12. Jay

    Yes, let’s talk about bank accounts. I know for a fact that Thompy has an account in Kuala Lumpur with 5.2 millionbds in it. He should be careful what his nosy daughter’s friends tell people around the BCC campus.

  13. Noel Lynch on why CWC was probably not best suited for the Caribbean.

    Noel Lynch on Salvaging CWC; Government has set up a committee to help devise way to safeguards returns from CWC; Carnival Destiny has seen it’s booking drop from 80% to 40%, but these challegnes are not the result of any Government policy failing

    Bookings that were once 80% before they were 40% are now said to be 50% and this will allow GoB to have the last laugh.

  14. Wishing in vain

    Here we have the results of a most corrupt and uncaring Gov’t we have and idiot as minister of tourism a loud mouth morally challenged lout as Deputy PM a dishonest slimely womaniser as the PM and we are wondering why our country is screwed up as it is.
    Now we have to tolerate Lynch etal trying to enlighten us to all the good things that have come about as a result of CWC 2007 let me honest with you we have nothing to be proud about we have more to be ashamed about than to be proud about.
    After we donated the US $ 15 mill to the largest cruise operation in the world only then to have our hotels run at a mere 45 % occupancy level is totally crazy but then to have Lynch tell us he knows anything about the loan is more of a disgrace and an insult to us the taxpayers.
    Oh by the way Carlise Bay has filled up today they now have 25 yachts in the bay the remaining 675 will be in on Friday, what a farace Lynch, Mottley and Owing has made of this CWC is amazing to me.

  15. It gets better with time. If you listen to Peter Boos, the PM and Stephen Alleyne, you will be in no doubt about the Government of Barbados role, from the very beginning in CWC. At the very end of his speech at Legacy Launch in the Glebe Owen made two pledges,
    1: that the West Indies will win the world cup
    2: that people will remember that Barbados host the world cup final.

    His stats don’t look so good and the future isn’t so bright.

  16. Wishing in vain

    I find Mr Loveridge’s comments amusing to the extent that we were told by the LOC that airline arrangements were well taken care of and all would be well with these arrangements, I suppose that was all hot air and more spin as well because as we have seen first hand airline movement was anything but smooth it was a disaster.
    I would like to extend my deepest sympathy to all those who have been conned by the trio of con artist Mottley, Lynch and Owing those that operate hotels, taxis, vendors, car rental, shops, tours, catamarn cruises,guess houses, bars, restaurants, those that fell for the debt trap to extend their houses for CWC and will now be burdened with this additional expenses to everyone who were led to believe that CWC would be the solution and end all of our worries my heart goes out you and sincerely wish we all recover from this within the next 10 years.

  17. Wishing in vain

    One question I need minister Lynch to respond to is if the islands of Grenada and St.Lucia benefitted from the use of the Carnival Destiny have they paid any part the cost associated with this charter? If not why not?
    Or is this just another blunder in the idiots take on this situation?? or are we so rich that we can afford to charter this vessel to the tune of US $ 15 mill and allow our caricom neighbours to share in the use of it without making any contribution at all ????

  18. Jay

    Wishing in vain

    Hoteliers are now reporting 96% occupancy rates. Where did your 45% come from?

  19. Jay
    April 27th, 2007 at 2:30 am · Edit
    Yes, let’s talk about bank accounts. I know for a fact that Thompy has an account in Kuala Lumpur with 5.2 millionbds in it. He should be careful what his nosy daughter’s friends tell people around the BCC campus.
    ————————————————————-
    As usual political diehards will always miss the point of contention as they find it increasingly difficult to defend the indefensible. I do not frown on success, or wealth accumulation, in fact I am busy doing the same, and welcome any opportunity to learn from persons who have similar goals and are or have successfully meeting them. The point has always been one of how was this wealth accumulated?, and it is with this question in mind that I dismiss Thompy’s millions, since in his public and private capacity he does not have access to public money or current governmental influence from which he could have misused and or abuse to his personal benefit. Now stay with me please. If a current minister goes from begging other parliamentarians for gas money, and help with his mortgage payments, to depositing a check alleged to be worth 750k into his bank account, all in a matter of 5-6 years, a deed that he pleas guilty too, and you, knowing the full and total charge to the treasury for his services as a parliamentarian, cabinet member, and first amongst equals, shouldn’t this make it very difficult to be handling that kind of money, at that time, in a legitimate, legal, and non corrupting manner? These are the questions, the comments and concerns that demands responses, and this is so because Mia Mottley correctly reminded us all that from the Highest person in this country to the lowliest worker, the law, and our judgment must be the same. If you want you can pretend that the subject is not a member of your party, and hypothesize on what should be

  20. For Sale:

    ” Where have all the cruise-ships gone?
    – long time pa-a-assing
    Where have all the cruise-ships gone?
    Long time ago..
    Where have all the cruise-ships gone?
    ‘Spin’ has spun them, every one
    When will they ever learn?
    When will they everrr learn?

    —————————————
    And so the dozens of ships that were going to soil Carlisle Bay..never did – and so:
    For Sale: PoopNets! good quality! never used!!
    Miles and miles of it! Get yours while stocks last!

    Tel: 426-3692(Perm.Sec’y, Min.of Health)
    or 430-5002 (Dep.Mngr,Operations, SSA)

    Mention Barney’s name for a big discount
    —————————————

    Where have all the tourists gone?
    Long time pa-a-assing
    Where have all the tourists gone?
    Long time ago
    Where have all the tourists gone?
    Gone to SPAIN-instead, every one
    When will We ever learn?
    When will We ever learn?

  21. John

    Straight talk

    “W.I. Cricket will never be the same after 2007.”

    This is the greatest positive to come out of CWC.

    The mess has forced us to look at our cricket, among many other things.

    We see the problems. We have talked about them.

    Now we will see if we do anything about them.

    Unfortunately the money is gone, but lets take it one at a time, stop the rot, then find solutions.

    It could do!!

  22. Jay

    Adrian

    Thompy accumulated that money from Sandy Lane and CLICO when he was Minister of Finance 13 years ago.

  23. Wishing in Vain

    Jay
    All you need to do is call them or nearly any west coast hotel and the story is the same.
    This one has hurt us the taxpayers hard VAT will be moving to 17 1/2 % with the wink of an eye only a matter of time before it happens.

  24. Jay

    Name the hotels that are at 45%. This should be interesting…Sandy Lane is at 100% until Sunday, Cobbler’s Cove is also full, Colony Club up to yesterday was at 78%, Almond Beach Club is at 66%, the Village is at 72%, so which hotels are you talking about?

  25. John

    Did the ICC choose to hold the World Cup Final on Heroes Day?

    If we listen to sources out of Government, Mia if I recall correctly, try as they might the GOB/WICB just could not shift the ICC into holding CWC a bit after the tourist season which would have extended the tourist season beyond April.

    The ICC insisted on holding it when they did, it was said because of the potential for rains in May/June/July.

    … and so we get a World Cup final on our Heroes Day …… what a coincidence, and yet hardly anyone seems to have noticed!!

    Even the standard pompous music we usually hear over and over again ad nauseum during April to herald the approaching Heroes Day has been absent.

    So too have the repetitious shorts on TV which remind us who has been chosen by Government to be our National Heroes.

    … and the newspapers, no full page ads with pictures and a story about our National Heroes.

    Yes, this year has been quite different so far.

    Guess by now we should know who are our National Heroes, ….. and perhaps even why.

  26. Adrian Loveridge

    Jay..

    I think you are missing the point.

    If our hotels are not full this week, or actually just part of it as many fans travelled Thursday or Friday from Jamaica and St. Lucia, then we would have an even bigger problem.
    After all remember that ‘our’ Minister of Tourism has assured us there will be ‘90,000’ long stay visitors here this week plus another. ‘75,000 cruise ship passengers’.

    The real damage has been done in the lead up period from March to early April when many hotels experienced low occupancies.

    Being full for a few days sadly does not make up for being nearly empty for five weeks in your peak winter season.

  27. Wishing in vain

    Well said Mr Loveridge but this Jay appears unable to comprehend so you may just have wasted your effort, If he could read he would have seen in my statement what I said it was there for all to see.
    But in his effort to blindly support his beloved party he fails to see the facts, your party screwed up Barbados and the ICC cannot be solely blamed for this disaster if the polticians had any balls about them (and we all know that Mottley has them) they would have put their foot firmly down and dictated to ICC when this event would take place but it appears that they went cap in hand begging to be trodding over with this disaster and mega debt and conned they were.

  28. Jay

    Mr Loveridge, you also need to understand that the blame must be pointed at the hotels for being empty.

    I know 17 properties, in Barbados who had rates between March 11 and April 29th that were indicative of rates during Christmas week. That was utterly stupid. Why increase your rate for March? Barbados’ games didn’t start until April 11th? Henceforth, most hotels suffered between March 11 and April 11. After April 11, things began to look rosy as expected.

    Hoteliers were a bit too over-enthusiastic over this World Cup.

  29. rasta man

    WHAT IS THE PROBLEM??? TODAYS SUNDAY SUN SAYS 9000 CRUISE PASSENGERS ARRIVED YESTERDAY ON ABOUT 5 SHIPS, ENOUGH TO FILL ONE THIRD OF KENSINGTON. ON ANOTHER POINT I THOUGHT WITH ALL THE SECURITY MEASURES , TICKETS COULD NOT BE RESOLD. I GUESS IF YOU SELL FOR LEST THAN COST THAT IS NOT CONSIDERED SCALPING “. GOD HELP US IN THE COMING MONTHS

  30. No -Name

    rasta man,
    Should’nt that be “Jah help us in the coming months?”

  31. Adrian Loveridge

    Jay..

    I share some of your thoughts.
    I really cannot understand how any hotelier, tourism policymaker or even the Minister of Tourism thought that we were going to be busy with cricket fans more than a few days before hosting the first Super Eight (11th April).

    You choice of word ‘indicative’ puzzles me a little.

    Are you saying the 17 hotels kept the same rate they charge at Christmas or around the same rate?
    The winter rate would have run up until 14th April anyway and I think a number just extended that until 30th April.

    Personally I do not find that unreasonable.

    I believe a great deal of the blame lies with Chris Dehring and Malcolm Speed who repeated time after time in the media during earlier stages of the event that hotels were price gouging.
    Neither produced a shred of evidence or named one hotel.
    This was of course, the same Chris Dehring that ordered the increase in match tickets by US$160 solely for the English fans during the West Indies/England services.
    The Barmy Army still havn’t forget that.

    Yes! In hindsight I really believe that hoteliers listened to ‘our’ Minister of Tourism’
    quote the ‘90,000’ long stay visitors and another ‘75,000 cruise ship passengers’ even up until the 25th March Brass Tacks Sunday programme.

    I think it will be a long time before they believe ANYTHING he says in the future and maybe that will lead to some recovery in the industry.

  32. John

    Adrian

    “I think it will be a long time before they believe ANYTHING he says in the future and maybe that will lead to some recovery in the industry.”
    +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

    …. and this is the legacy of CWC for Barbados. Our leaders and significant other people from our intelligensia have been weighed in the balance and found wanting.

    We have in our hands the evidence which should make us never trust them again ……. well hopefully!!

    The accounting is important but we will not hold our breaths waiting for it. Like GEMS, the money has disappeared. In the absence of accounting, that is all we need to know.

    This is the single most significant and the best possible outcome of CWC. We understand that we are on our own and will not look to these poor excuses of BArbadians for guidance.

    We need to think things through for ourselves, follow our conscience and drag our leaders by their ears as we try to recuperate from the calamity we let happen to us.

    I notice in today’s Advocate that the Police are now better equipped to deal with warfare. Wonder where Owen is thinking of invading.

  33. Wishing in vain

    John he has invaded our pride our honesty or sincerety or national pride, or morals not much else left for him to invade as far as I can see.