Barbados Integrity Laws – Some Folks Still Fooled Into Thinking Words Are Actions

“One of the major complaints against the new David Thompson administration in Barbados has been that, although it won power mainly by promising to do something about the entrenched corruption in the previous Owen Arthur administration, it had appeared to have forgotten the issue”

Janine Mendes-Franco quotes Don Mitchell MBE, on Harvard Law School’s Global Voices (link here)

Don Mitchell has been a voice for integrity in government for years – even before it was fashionable to say the words “integrity” or “conflicts of interest” – and he is nobody’s fool.

That said, his latest Corruption Free Anguilla article ‘Barbados’ about the continued promises but zero action by the Barbados DLP Government is too kind and optimistic. Mr. Mitchell has forgotten that this Barbados government promised to adopt a Ministerial Code on the first day it assumed office, but then did not.

Mr. Mitchell has forgotten that Prime Minister David Thompson could have declared on that first day that no government contracts would be issued to companies that are owned by the immediate family of a government official or where a government official has an interest in a company.

Prime Minister Thompson could have issued that order on the first day, and he could issue the order tomorrow if he was really serious about integrity in government. There is no need for him to wait for legislation, he could implement this single change as a matter of government policy and he could do so immediately.

This “Government Advisory Board” that Thompson appointed to “look into” integrity legislation has no address, no phone number, no email address and no public face or method by which citizens can communicate with it.

It is smoke on a windy day.

Barbados Free Press will continue to remind people that words are only words. Words are not action.

As to transparency and conflicts of interest, one of David Thompson’s first official acts as a newly-elected Prime Minister was to borrow the corporate jet of a company that does business with the Barbados government – and to refuse to release any details of the costs and arrangements.

When it comes to integrity in government, David Thompson’s only real action has been to create a conflict of interest by borrowing corporate bizjets from friends who do business with the Government of Barbados.

Respectfully, we suggest that Don Mitchell should re-write his article.

Further Reading

Corruption Free Anguilla blog: Barbados

Barbados Free Press Articles…

July 5, 2008: Barbados Prime Minister David Thompson Fools Lindsey Grant – St. Kitts and Nevis People’s Action Movement Leader

June 6, 2008: Will Rayside Construction Be Awarded Barbados Government Contracts To Thank Leroy Parris For The Use Of The Bizjet?

June 3, 2008: Barbados Government’s 140 Days Of Broken Promises – In Four Easy Steps

April 17, 2008: Barbados Prime Minister Thompson’s Weasel Words On Integrity Legislation – No Guts. No Leadership. No Personal Transparency From Our Jet-Setter PM


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

8 responses to “Barbados Integrity Laws – Some Folks Still Fooled Into Thinking Words Are Actions

  1. 329.18

    Wunnuh get trick?

    Axe Richie to bring back de NDP so wunnuh wud have a nex choice,neh?

    But noooah..wunnuh LIKE 2 party politrix!
    Dah fuh lick ‘unnuh!

  2. reality check

    the complete silence by the new government now in power on the Ministerial code and ITAL has become deafening!

    Boy were we suckered!

    In a democracy that is real, we would be getting progress reports from government hearing about opinions from Town Hall meetings, who said what, timelines etc.

    Makes you want to ask what games are being perpetrated or continued without regular reports open communications and independently “audited” financial statements.

    I guess in the end we get what we deserve for our gullibility.

  3. akabozik

    Harvard Law School cares about integrity legislation in Barbados and says so on their website? I’m impressed with how the internet has changed everything.

    That article at Harvard Law School wouldn’t be there except for you BFP. Keep up the public pressure on the Barbados government. When other organizations like Harvard start asking questions about the way our government operates without integrity laws etc., you know that you are making a difference.

  4. Fool me once

    When the government gonna walk the walk instead of talk the talk that day we gonna think maybe they are not robbing everything. Until then they have a crooked reputation to live up to.

    Best joke Thompson said in parliament Trinidad anti-thiefing laws not working because someone got caught.

    BFP you are are hope that someday somewhere someone gonna change things for BIM. Hope that day some is left over for us lowly workers.

  5. Jerome Hinds

    Best joke Thompson said in parliament Trinidad anti-thiefing laws not working because someone got caught.


    Did PM Thompson stated ” Trinidad ” during his speech in Parliament ?

    Anyhow, rest assured ITAL is coming .

  6. WildyCoyte.

    Well someday i hope to come into millions of dollars and set up a front company down Harbour Road and wash my millions too,wait i ain’t nobody????

  7. J. Payne

    Shouldn’t this site have way— more info?

  8. isam

    The time has come for some sort of intergrity law in Barbados. There is too much comingling of various interest among the political and commercial elite of the isaland.
    It must be made abundantly clear that all members of government and or employees, be made to disclose their affliations, with any party to any goverment contracts and or having business with the government.
    Not just say it, but it must be made in black and white, and sworn to,under penalty of perjury.
    There are good folk in government, that has the nation’s interest at heart. But, then there are those, who feel that everything that a government posess, belong to them and can be used at their every request.
    The problem that is wrong with some bajans, is this feeling of entitlement to the services of the government, for free. Those few, do not even contribute to the nation coffers. They do not pay taxes, and sit on their laurels and sponge off of those hard working Bajans.
    When i see a person refusing to pay rent for decades, want to claim the housing department is unfair for evicting them, really get me teed off.
    Suddenly, some bread and fish political operative, would suddenly blame the government.

    The government should get out of the housing business, and let the free market decide.
    Corruption will always be there in any government, but that does not excuse any government from trying to clean it up.