Mia Mottley and her band of deposed, dethroned and defeated government despots make for just about the poorest quality official opposition that Barbados has suffered under in many a year.
The trouble with the BLP and Mottley as Her Majesty’s Loyal Opposition is, of course, that the defeated BLP Arthur/Mottley government is generally acknowledged to have been the most corrupt and despotic bunch of politicians this country has seen since independence…
… and that is saying quite a bit!
Whether it was Minister of Public Works Gline Clarke building a house for his mistress on land that his government expropriated for “public housing”, Mia Mottley calling for talk shows and blogs to be censored, Tourism Minister Noel Lynch storming off a radio show because a listener asked how Minister Lynch became a millionaire on a government salary – or any number of other scandals, hardly a week went by without the BLP government exhibiting some new corruption.
So Mia Mottley and the gang don’t have much credibility to stand up and criticize the Thompson government for being pretty much as corrupt as the BLP government was. I mean… what is Mottley going to do? Complain that Thompson hasn’t kept his promise about Freedom of Information legislation when Mottley’s BLP didn’t introduce such laws in fourteen years of majority government? Ha… Thompson would laugh and say “De fat one mek sport!”
So the tendency is to marginalise and ignore the BLP Opposition, and we at BFP understand that because we mostly ignore them too – just like the Thompson government ignores them.
We Should Listen To What Mottley & The BLP Say About CLICO and Sam Lord’s Castle…
Here is what Mottley and the BLP have to say about the government’s compulsory aquisition of Sam Lord’s Castle. The article was originally published in the Barbados Advocate and also circulated as a BLP emailed newsletter. When you read the article, put aside your thoughts about the BLP being corrupt themselves… and just go on the merits of the article itself.
So read the article and then, let’s talk… because this corruption from the Thompson DLP government isn’t getting any better…
BLP column: That Sam Lord’s conundrum
Why is the David Thompson Administration rushing to compulsorily acquire Sam Lord’s Castle from Clico? This is the question Barbadians want answered today. After all the promises of open Government, how is it that Barbadians first learnt of the acquisition through a Section 3 notice published only in the Barbados Advocate?
Why, despite his promises of transparency, has the Prime Minister not kept the country up to date on the state of Clico’s affairs in Barbados? Why has he neglected for months the concerns of Barbadian investors and policyholders, who are unable to get their money and who do not know what is going on?
How is it that the OECS regulators are moving to place the CL Financial subsidiary – British American – under judicial management in the Eastern Caribbean, but here in Barbados, despite repeated calls from the Leader of the Opposition, Mia Mottley, that is not an appropriate remedy for our own people?
Why is it that the Memorandum of Understanding with Clico still has not been made public as it was in Trinidad & Tobago? What are the terms of reference of the Oversight Committee? Why has the Oversight Committee not invited offers for the Sam Lord’s property from the private sector, when interest has been expressed in that quarter? And why, after criticising the Owen Arthur Administration for investing in Gems, is the David Thompson Administration now seeking to compulsorily acquire a dilapidated castle without any plan for its development? The cart before the horse syndrome has risen to new heights on this deal, even by Democratic Labour Party standards.
Why when direct foreign investment has fallen by $1 billion in the last year, would the Government want to use your money to bail out Clico Holdings instead of advertising the property locally and abroad? Why when our foreign reserves are a problem and the Central Bank has instructed four other insurance entities to repatriate 50 per cent of their second tier foreign reserves by March 2010, is the Government spending your money on a derelict castle and 54 acres of land?
How is this move of benefit to anyone except Clico? No wonder Clico’s Terrence Thornhill does not anticipate any difficulties with the acquisition. Like us, you will be forgiven if you think that a deal has already been struck. Like the ad says: “The price is right darling, the price is right.”
Why would the Government choose to use prime tourism development land for housing? How do you value prime, cliff-front land for housing? What does the Minister of Housing mean by protecting beach access? The good people of St. Philip, Bajans from all over the island and visitors have been swimming and fishing at Long Bay, Harrismith and Bottom Bay for centuries without any problems. Furthermore, access to the cliffs is already assured as part of the conservation area designated in the 1980s. So who is he fooling with this emotional touchstone?
What is the urgency at a time when Government is cash-strapped and having difficulty paying its bills to acquire Sam Lord’s Castle? How can this be a priority when Government has cut its budget across all Ministries by ten per cent? How is it that they could not find money to ease you by supporting the Barbados Water Authority for 18 months, but they can find the money to bailout Clico?
Something is very wrong with this picture. The question we must all ask now is how much is the Government going to pay Clico for the property? This is surely going to be the most expensive Government housing project in the 328 years since our settlement? The people are watching and waiting for answers. Over to you, PM Thompson.