Another Reason Why Barbados Police Commissioner Dottin Should Be Fired – Police Again Fail To Answer Call For Help


How Many “Barbados Police Don’t Come” Stories Can You Tell? Here’s Another…


Bridgetown, Barbados
MONDAY, March 30, 2009
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Sanctuary Threatened

[ Bridgetown , BARBADOS ]   Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary officials reported that a group of eight (8) men were caught stealing wildlife inside the RAMSAR wetland site on Sanctuary lands.

Police were called when the trespass was discovered last Wednesday, but there was no response.  The men continued to stay through the afternoon, while Sanctuary employees tried to calm the situation.

One employee reported that one of the men made personally threatening gestures as if he had a gun, and within the hour gunshots were heard coming from the Amity Lodge side of the wetland where the men were last seen.

The area is recognized by the international Convention on Wetlands as an area of significant biological importance.  Both the Government of Barbados and the Sanctuary own the lands within the RAMSAR site.

After taking an estimated 100 tilapia, the intruders told a Sanctuary worker that they had a right to access and fish in the RAMSAR-protected wetland since Government had announced a Bds $1.0 million budget for it.

Police and Defence Force patrols of the RAMSAR site have stopped since the Sanctuary closed in December of last year.  Authorities have not explained why this has happened.

There is deep concern that environmental pollution and other problems are escalating because of a lack of enforcement of environmental law in and around the Graeme Hall RAMSAR wetland.

“This is but one present-day example of a major threat to the wetland and the Sanctuary,” said one official.  “If a thousand people came to take what they want, there would be nothing left.  The wetland and the Sanctuary absolutely depend on legal and environmental protections from Government.”

A police report was filed on Thursday at the Worthing Police Station.

Barbados Free Press Take…

Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary filed a report with the police? Waste of paper.

If anything the report should have been for Neglect By Police, but unfortunately that’s not a crime in Barbados – its a way of life.


Filed under Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Corruption, Crime & Law, Environment, Nature, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption, Tourism, Traveling and Tourism, Wildlife

32 responses to “Another Reason Why Barbados Police Commissioner Dottin Should Be Fired – Police Again Fail To Answer Call For Help

  1. Green Monkey

    “The wetland and the Sanctuary absolutely depend on legal and environmental protections from Government.”

    They in some bare trouble then.

  2. Bajangal

    That’s for sure!

  3. Tell me Why

    I can attest to the behaviour of the same Worthing station involving a commotion around 3 a.m just below the same Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary one Friday night. A call was made to the station and no one responded, instead, a patrol from central had to travel to Worthing after 4.30 a.m to deal with the problem.

  4. PiedPiper

    Who the hell minding the shop? It’s a serious thing when police can pick and choose what calls they will respond to.

  5. They are too busy riding the segway trying to avoid hitting people who are using the boardwalk.

  6. Fred Corbin

    Why is this not in the newspaper? Isn’t it obvious that the more public exposure this kind of activity gets the more likely that change will be implemented.


  7. reality check

    correct me if I am wrong, didn’t I see a year or two ago that the Sanctuary among other things paid for the Worthing Police Station to be painted?

    Only in Barbados no act of kindness will go unpunished.

  8. Assaulted

    I was assaulted by a conductor on a ZR van. The officer investigating the incident told me he could not find the van. You don’t have to ask which station he was from.

  9. J

    Haven’t people been fishing in the Graeme Hall wetland for 5,000 years or more?

  10. Nostradamus

    J, ever heard about conservation and the need to protect natural resources including plant and animal species as well as their habitat for the future?

    The Graeme Hall wetland, both private Sanctuary lands and the public owned lands, has been designated a Natural Heritage CONSERVATION Area.

    One of the purposes of this designation (by Government of Barbados PDP 2003) is to “protect a functionally connected natural heritage system based on an ecosystem approach.”

  11. PiedPiper

    It would seem to me that a Commissioner of Police must be more than a figurehead. Honestly, Dottin look a little long in the tooth to be leading a Police Force in a country that has seen a sharp rise in crime. In my opinion, Commissioner Dottin either doesn’t recognize the need for change or is simply unable to rise to the challenge of change. Then again, maybe he just holds too many secrets to ever be removed from his position.
    Modern day Barbados needs a Commissioner of Police with some backbone and one that officers can have some respect for. Are the inmates running the assylum?

  12. Sad To Say

    Many members of the police force are trying to get away from working too hard. This is a culture that has taken over greater that 60% of our youngsters. For a police officer if a case remains unsolved he/ she does not have to take time to prepare his/ her case for court. Unfortunately this is not a bad option for some of our young police officers. I would like Mr. Dottin and the RBPF to publish the data on (a) % of unsolved cases in general, (b) % of unsolved murders and (c) % of unsolved non-murder cases. We the taxpayers of this country have a right to these statistics. Do you think we should offer a reward to policde officers? Should we pay an officer a bonus of 25% of their monthly salary for each non-murder case that they solve and 100% of their salary for each murder case solved.

  13. J

    Dear Nostradamas:

    Yes I have.

    I am one of those people who liked Graeme Hall Swamp better when it was not “developed”

    No buildings, no roads, and no thousands of people traping through this gfragile area.

    I know that we need to earn our living, but I am very uncomfortable with trying to earn money from this fragile ecosystem.

    I would rather a few subsistence fishermen use the swamp, than have than to have tens of thousands of people and their vehicles in that fragile area year after year.

    My suggestion would be to stop spending money and stop trying to earn money from the swamp and let the swamp return to nature. Maybe then it would last for another 5,000 years or another 50,000 years. And it would not cost the taxpayers anything.

    But nobody would make money off it either.

  14. Sad To Say

    Excellent suggestions J. Let nature take its course. Cut the commercialization of the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctury. I agree with you 100%

  15. J

    Dear Sad To Say:

    You wrote “Should we pay an officer a bonus of 25% of their monthly salary for each non-murder case that they solve and 100% of their salary for each murder case solved.”

    Let’s say under your system J wrongfully accuses you of some crime. The police know that if justice is done, that is if you are acquitted they will get a flat pay check, but if there is a miscarriage of justice, that is if you are wrongfully convicted the police get a 25% bonus.

    Would you still feel comfortable with your system?

  16. Assaulted

    The woman confessed that she fed the baby to the pig. The baby turned up 20 years later.
    That was police work !
    The RBPF got the best officers in the world

  17. BFP

    Sure… turn it back into the garbage dump it was before the nature sanctuary, let the developers pave all around it and when it dries up, pave it too!

    What the hell… pave over the whole damn island.

  18. Sad To Say

    BFP who suggested paving all around or over it? Your slip is showing.

  19. Sad To Say

    While I see your point, I hope the judiciary does their job as mandated by our legal system.


    J – you rather “subsistence fishermen use the swamp” – presumably to catch fish to sell/consume? HOW MANY FISH do you think they are going to catch? 100? and after them, – how many more?

    Be advised that I “grew up” in the swamp – – 1943-1954. In those days I was one of the boys who would catch mollies and ‘thousands’ as we had aquariums. In those days there were no edible sized fish. The only ‘big fish’ was the odd tarpon that came into the swamp from the sea via the sluice gate on the beach and a tarpon is not an edible fish.

    Somewhere along the way, in the 60’s I think, telapia got in the swamp effectively eliminating the thousands and the mollies.

    The telapia are comparatively few in number when thinking about ‘commercial quantities.’ Three good commercial hauls and just about all would be gone.

    Your rationale is difficult to follow….

  21. Nostradamus

    J and Sad to Say, maybe it’s your slip that’s showing. The Government owned Eastern side of the swamp is open to the public and these same supposed “subsistence fishermen”, as they have done over the last 5000 years could have gone and fished there without any hindrance and would not have needed to climb over fences and trespass on private property.

    Why didn’t they do that? Well, because of zero management of the government owned side there is a lack of fish so your supposed “subsistence fishermen” cannot subsist on what’s over there. Is this what you mean by “let the swamp return to nature”? Is that what you are proposing for the Sanctuary? Is that sustainable?

    Man and his developments have had an impact on the wetland and whether we like it or not the wetland has to be managed and Government has to put in place policies and take actions that ensure that the existing ecosystem is protected. They have designated it a Natural Heritage Conservation Area and Ramsar site but that’s it. Just the usual lot of long talk and no action. The Natural Heritage department has responsibility for this area. Have you ever heard the Director or the staff of that department utter one word about the wetland or articulate the department’s policies and actions with regard to the area?

    The government and by extension the citizens of this country have to a large extent been accepting the “free lunch” and philanthropy provided by the private owner of the Sanctuary on his Western side. He has been managed, protected, provided jobs, provided an environmental education centre for children, facilitated scientific study and provided an award winning eco tourist attraction for several years. The thanks he has received is vilification and policies and actions by government that are destroying the very area that they themselves have designated a Natural Heritage Conservation Area and Ramsar site.

    Slightly off topic but related is that government is talking about setting up a philanthropic centre and attracting philanthropic donations to assist in the development of our country. Based on what has transpired at the Sanctuary how many philanthropists are going to be lining up to make donations of any significance? Not to mention that philanthropic endeavors require transparency and integrity on all sides.

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  23. PiedPiper

    J, you seem to have missed the larger implication here. A staff member of the Sanctuary was not only threatened but subsequently, gunshots rang out on the property. Are you advocating lawlessness?

  24. GHNS

    The “commercial” visitor portion of the existing RAMSAR wetland is less than 5%. The idea that the area could “return to nature” is seductive, but completely unrealistic. There is not a single successful example of a biologically sensitive area, surrounded by urban sprawl, that has returned to its biologically pristine state all by itself.

    Not one, anywhere.

    Legal and environmental protections must stem from government, both in policy and actions. It is not a natural act for government to do this, as it is difficult to justify immediate economic benefit. The benefit is there, but short-term profit scenarios are ill-suited to good urban environmental and recreational planning.

    It takes an act of faith and leadership to save sensitive lands in the middle of an urban landscape. And our leaders are under tremendous pressure to deliver economic benefits to society in the short run.

  25. reality check

    Wasn’t I reading not that long ago, declarations by the CJ that an unlicensed loaded gun would result in an automatic 8 year jail sentence?

    It would be interesting to know if the felons that discharged their guns at the back of Graeme Hall were licensed or unlicensed. If they were licensed that would bring up a whole host of new questions.

  26. Missing Home

    Reality Check, don’t you know that if you want to buy a house for cheap in Bim you hire some bully boys to rough up the owner? Soon the owner wants to move away and will sell for cheap. Happen all the time.

  27. Sad To Say

    First time I have heard of this and I have lived here for all of the 35 years of my life.

  28. WildyCoyte.

    Secrets held can make or break you,if you were Dottin whose interest would come first,yours or those stupes we call Bajans,take a guess?

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