Daily Archives: September 14, 2007

Triumph Of The Blogs’ Print Editions – Nation News Shamed Into Reporting Fraud Allegations Against Barbados Flyover Contractor, But Their Carefully Managed Story Still Communicates A Lie

Nation News Held Story For At Least Eleven Days – Then Still Engaged In Damage Control For The Government!

After hiding a story of corruption allegations from the Barbados public for at least eleven days, the Nation News today finally printed Fraud Claim – concerning fraud and kickback allegations against the President of the company building Barbados’ way-over-budget and controversial highway and flyover project. We presume that other island media might pick up the story – but even that is not a given. At the time of this writing (12:30pm Barbados Time, Friday, September 14, 2007) neither the Barbados Advocate nor the CBC has reported the scandal.

As Barbados Free Press said last week…

Barbados News Media Again Proves It Cannot Be Trusted

On Tuesday, September 4, 2007, two local blogs – Barbados Underground and Barbados Free Press – published news stories about how Jonathan Lazlo Danos, President of Barbados flyover contractor 3S Structural Steel Solutions, is being sued for fraud and secret kickbacks on another government highway bridge project in Jamaica.

This Is A Huge And Important Story That Should Have Been Covered Immediately By The Barbados News Media

The fact that the President of the company that is building Barbados’ controversial highway and flyover bridges should be sued for fraud and secret kickbacks in relation to a similar bridge project for another Caribbean government is a HUGE news story. The Barbados highway and flyover bridge project is worth hundreds of millions of dollars and was awarded by the Barbados government behind closed doors under circumstances that have even the most jaded government supporters shaking their heads…

… This joint refusal of ALL the Barbados news media to cover a story of national importance about allegations of fraud and secret kickbacks by a man who is in charge of our national highway and bridge project is unforgivable.

At best, it shows that there is no freedom of the press in Barbados. At worst, it shows a conspiracy by all the major Barbados news media to hush up what should be a crisis of credibility for the Barbados Government…

… from BFP’s TELL YOUR FRIENDS, FAMILY, CO-WORKERS: Barbados Media Hides 3S Fraud Scandal From Bajan Citizens

INSIDE SOURCE: Barbados Blogs’ Print Editions Embarrassed The Nation Newspaper Into Covering The Scandal

According to our sources, the story published in the Nation News today had been ready to go for a week, but the Nation News held the story back pending permission of the government! Even after Barbados Free Press launched a printed edition on Monday, September 10, 2007, senior management at The Nation dithered because the story was likely to embarrass the government. (ed: Disgusting)

When Barbados Underground published a highly comprehensive flyover article in their printed edition (link here) on Tuesday, September 11, 2007, that was the final straw for many of the journalists at The Nation News. A staff rebellion had already been brewing since the blogs broke the story online on September 4th and taunted The Nation and other Barbados media for failing to cover such important news. The tension was heightened on Wednesday morning when several Nation News staff members brought copies of the blogs’ printed editions into work. At least one of the journalists said that they had not printed the blog paper themselves but was given it by someone else.

According to one of our sources, this proof that the two Barbados blog newspapers were in actual circulation sent the newsroom and senior management into a frenzy, yet senior management met late Wednesday morning and still no decision was made to run with the story that had already broken in print on the streets of Bridgetown!

Senior Management At The Nation News Consulted With Government Before Printing The Story!!!

And here comes the best part, my friends…

Our sources each independently confirm that after Wednesday’s meeting, the Senior Management at the Nation News consulted with various government personnel as to how to handle this news story. “We’ll get back to you” was all they could get from anyone in government. By the end of Wednesday no definitive answer had been received from the government and the journalist rebellion was gaining momentum. According to one source, “By Thursday morning the tension (between staff and management) was like to be cut with a knife” …

… and still no decision on how and when to print the news!

On Thursday morning senior management again met to discuss their problem – they couldn’t get anyone from the government to either comment on the story for the record or to provide a blessing for running “at least something” to stop the embarrassment for the newspaper. By Thursday afternoon a series of “door closers” (meetings) had still failed to produce a decision and with the mood in the newsroom described as “ugly as sin” the decision was made to “print something, anything – just don’t use the work ‘kickbacks’…”.

Lies Of Omission, Twists Of Truth

That decision on Thursday afternoon resulted in the article found in today’s Nation News – which is devoid of the word “kickback” or any comments from opposition parties or anyone who might cause readers to ask how we know such kickbacks are not part of our flyover project.

The failure after 11 days to have anyone in government comment upon the story is concealed by falsely implying to the Nation’s readers that this is a “just breaking” story. Minister of Public Works Gline Clarke was “unavailable for comment yesterday” (Thursday) as he was “convalescing in the United States”. Acting Minister of Public Works, Senator Tyrone Barker said he couldn’t speak on such matters “off the cuff”.

After all – this is a just breaking story, don’t ya know?

And what about the Prime Minister, or Deputy Prime Minister? One would think that someone senior in government could have been contacted for such an important story where the Nation News took ELEVEN DAYS to write a few paragraphs.

Why wasn’t the Prime Minister asked to comment on fraud and kickback allegations against the contractor of our half a billion dollar highway project?

Ah…. Now there is another story…

Why Has Government Been Unable To Comment On This Important Story?

Our sources tell us that Prime Minister Owen Arthur has been “unavailable” for most of the week.

Which is also why no one in government dared to make a decision for The Nation News about when and how they should present their 11 day old “breaking story”.

There is much, much more to this entire story. We’re working on it and Barbados Free Press readers will hear more when we have sufficiently confirmed what we are hearing from various sources.

Meanwhile, you might want to write to the Nation News and ask them why they sat on a story of national interest for 11 days.

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados News & Media, Blogging, Business, Business & Banking, Crime & Law, Freedom Of The Press, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

An Engineer Writes About Those Barbados Flyovers

barbados-flyover-scandal.jpg

We received this letter without an indication as to whether the author wishes his name published, so out of caution we have withheld the name unless we hear otherwise…

Flyovers hit the headlines again.

A friend drew my attention to a local blog today. Assuming that it is correct, it did serve to illuminate a problem with the flyovers that had previously bothered me. What had troubled me was that the Government’s civil engineers had apparently proposed the flyovers as a solution to the congestion problem on the ABC Highway in preference to traffic lights. Now it appears that the idea was due to Mr. Ralph Williams, not unsurprisingly if true, since the flyovers are to be made of steel and Mr. Williams owns the only sizeable steel fabricating firm in Barbados That Mr. Williams apparently sold his bill of goods to the Prime Minister, the Minister of Public Works and Transport and, apparently, the Ministry’s engineers is an extraordinary accomplishment.

It is an article of faith in highway engineering that one keeps the gradients on major highways as easy and as level as possible, with as few gradients as the topography allows. The interpolation of the steel switchbacks that are about to disfigure the landscape of Barbados is quite simply idiotic. However, we can always offer a sort of national Disneyworld as an attraction for The Honourable Noel Lynch to advertise.

Of course, that recent news that the work will eventually cost $360 million Barbados dollars is another reason to call for the heads of the PM and the Minister. The PM is an economist – can’t he look after the money? Not to mention that going up and down the flyovers will increase fuel consumption.

Traffic lights work very well when they are properly used and maintained. Mr. Williams, who is an electrical engineer as far as I know, would know this. After all, he has traveled the world and seen them working, and I am sure if they were part of his organisation he would never have allowed them to be the subject of opprobrium and contempt.

127 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

BLP Government Spammers Continue Threats Of Violence – Threaten To Harm Ian Bourne And His Pets

Posted Last Night By One Of The BLP Government Workers Assigned To Shut Down Barbados Free Press…

(Comment to Ian Bourne)…

“… By the way, I used to enjoy seeing you on CBC, though there was always the question of the symbolism of it, given your colour which you can do nothing about.

Be careful of how you support BFP… this is a war and if you side with them too vocally we will have to do something to you too (or to one of your pets).”

Sep 14, 4:55 AM (GMT)

(The above was posted by a Barbados government employee being paid to prevent Bajans from exercising free speech.)

Government Cyber Attack On Bajan Free Speech Continues

Barbados Free Press has been under a coordinated and stepped-up 24/7 heavy cyber attack since the publication of our printed edition last Sunday. We are receiving over 3000 foul comments in every 24 hour period – designed to prevent Bajan citizens from discussing important issues in our comments section.

So far, we are managing about 20 hours of live moderation coverage per day where we have been successful in blocking 100% of the spam or removing it within a short time.

(That printed edition really shook up the corrupt government!)

Last night we had a 3 hour period when the comments were not being moderated and the BLP government employee was able to find a few IP and word combinations that bypassed the filters. Only a small proportion of his or her comments made it through, and they have been cleaned up except for the few that we let stand to show the character and desperation of the people who ordered this attack.

Threats Of Violence Against A Man Remembering His Dear Pet Cat

BFP reader Ian Bourne runs Bajan Reporter blog – a popular blog that focuses on entertainment, community and culture but no politics. He was visiting BFP and commented on the story of the orphaned monkey and the dove who befriended each other. Ian fondly remembered an old cat of his…

“That Daily Mail item makes you believe there is still magic in the world (despite certain idiocy, ahem), my eyes are still watering at the sheer beauty and innocence of it, especially since I lost my alpha moggy who was 12 years (it was cancer of the mouth) this last Aug 30th”

The response of the BLP Government employee was to say “Be careful of how you support BFP… this is a war and if you side with them too vocally we will have to do something to you too (or to one of your pets).”

Thugs In The Pay Of The Barbados Government – Your Tax Dollars

Welcome to Barbados – where government thugs beat newspaper reporters, threaten violence, seek to divide Bajans by race and generally do anything they can to stay in power and prevent free speech.

If only our Barbados news media had of said “no” to these despots instead of corruptly trading their submissiveness for government advertising revenues. If only the Barbados news media had stood up for freedom and accountability.

Here we are almost two weeks after blogs broke the story that the man in charge of hundreds of millions of dollars of flyover project is being sued for fraud and corrupt kickbacks during his last government bridge project (in Jamaica) and not one word of the story has been mentioned by a frightened and corrupted Barbados news media. (See BFP’s TELL YOUR FRIENDS, FAMILY, CO-WORKERS: Barbados Media Hides 3S Fraud Scandal From Bajan Citizens)

“In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.”

Martin Luther King

27 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, Freedom Of The Press, News Media, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Everybody Needs Somebody…

barbados-lovers.jpg

UPDATED: August 23, 2010

All I have to say is… Happy anniversary my love. I wouldn’t change a thing.

Marcus

Original Article…

Our regular readers know that the Barbados Free Press gang is a very mixed bunch – with pretty well every shade of skin colour on this island appearing somewhere in the group.

But we’ve got nothing on these two. Click on the picture for the story and be prepared for lots of “Awwww, isn’t that sweet” from the girls.

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Filed under Barbados, Culture & Race Issues