Daily Archives: August 24, 2009

Emergency Blood Donation Call in Barbados – AB+ Especially Needed – Please help ‘Louise’

Barbados Free Press picked up on this article from Ian Bourne’s The Bajan Reporter blog…

(Patient’s name changed to protect the innocent, but charity people at bottom of note use their actual contacts and names)

I have a very big favour to ask. The only way forward at this stage is to get help by word of mouth around the island. I am therefore asking you to forward the two enclosures to as many people as you can, with a message to continue to forward. I am hoping that eventually, the right people will respond to one or both requests.

I am not sure if you have heard yet, or even know of “Louise,” but she needs some help urgently. She needs to sell her car and to get people to donate blood early next week so that her operation can go ahead.

“Louise” is my best friend here on the island and she told me less than 2 weeks ago that she has colon cancer. It has all been a huge shock for “Louise” and her family and friends. But the worse of it is that although her cancer is very serious, she is facing other problems. Usually “Louise” would be moritified that I am even discussing her condition, but she has come to terms with the fact that we now have to go to great lengths if she is going to get through this nightmare.

Only today was the date for her surgery confirmed as next Friday 28th – but they will not operate without donations of blood. With that in mind, I now need to ask people to donate blood next Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday so that “Louise” can benefit from the donations. FYI, “Louise” is AB+ blood group which in theory means that she can accept blood from anyone. However, when she was in hospital recently she rejected one batch of blood which meant that her body was making antibodies against some blood groups. This meant that could only accept her own blood group i.e. AB+ and as a result the hospital ran out of blood twice during the transfusion. It is therefore imperative that we get people to donate AB+ blood. However, it would also be good for people of other blood groups to donate as a contingency. If we do not collect enough AB+ then “Louise” can still use other blood groups if she was prepared with drugs that will hopefully stop the antibodies. But this is not an ideal situation and is a last resort. Therefore we need as many people to donate blood as possible, but AB+ people especially. She has been told by the doctors that the surgery for her cancer cannot go ahead without the blood.

The Blood Collection offices are open from 8-4 Monday to Friday (shorter day on Friday); you need to be between 18 and 65, not had a tattoo, acupuncture or ear piercing within a year and must have a full tummy i.e. eaten a half hour before going and an hour should be all it takes. The Blood Bank can be reached through the QEH switchboard at extension 2614 or direct at 429-4307; it is now located just around the roundabout down from St-Gabriel’s on Jemmotts Lane.

Therefore can you please forward the attached note to your database.

IN ADDITION – WE NEED TO SELL “LOUISE’S” CAR

She urgently needs to sell the car to pay for her treatment, as well as chemotherapy, so again, can you send out an urgent message to your database – see across for similar vehicle.

It is a Toyota MR2 Spider convertible blue car. “Louise” has recently had the car valued at around 70,000 bds, but is asking 55,000 for a quick sale, but will take 50,000 as the lowest price.

—————–

I am not sure if you know “Louise,” but she is a strong and impressive lady, but this is the first time in her life that she has had to accept help from friends and others. But this is not a time to be shy about asking for favours as too much is at stake. So any help you can give is much appreciated.

Many thanks again for your help on this.

Love to you all

Bridget XXX [NB: e-mail in link] – any questions call me on 247 9292 (do not leave messages as I am bad at collecting them) or call Richard on 247 9222. Or call the house at 432 1630

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Filed under Barbados, Health

Barbados Police Allow Thieves To Take Home Stolen Fish – No Charges

Graeme Hall Mangrove Wetland & Watershed

Graeme Hall Mangrove Wetland & Watershed

GRAEME HALL NATURE SANCTUARY, INC.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Bridgetown, Barbados
MONDAY, August 24, 2009
Email Contact:               news@graemehall.com
Archives and Art:          www.graemehall.com/reference.htm

Poachers Caught and Released by Police

On Saturday, August 15, 2009, a group of about 15 fisherman were found in the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary fishing illegally for its rare tarpon, the largest and most popular exhibit fish in the Graeme Hall wetland.  Five of the “ringleader” fishermen were caught and questioned by police and Sanctuary security personnel as the other ten fled.

Another incident like this happened in late March of this year.  In both instances police were called, but there was no immediate response, and insistent follow up requests by Sanctuary staff had to be made before they came.

As of Friday, August 21, police had not made any arrests or brought charges in either case, and in fact had allowed the fishermen to leave the Sanctuary with all of the dead tarpon.

According to Peter Allard, owner of the Sanctuary, the value and integrity of the Sanctuary investment depend on enforced protections of wildlife inventory.   The long term health of the Sanctuary also depends on the enforcement of Barbados’ pollution and other environmental laws within the Graeme Hall wetland and contiguous lands.

To protect his investment, Mr. Allard is making a formal request to the Government of Barbados that immediate criminal trespass, theft, and related environmental poaching charges be brought against all future violators and the ringleaders of the last trespass be immediately notified of this proposed action.

Allard noted that it is also an issue of protecting the last remaining biological reserves of Barbados.  This wildlife is part of Barbados’ natural heritage within the OS2 Natural Heritage Conservation Area, and is part of the international Convention on Wetlands Multilateral Environmental Agreement (RAMSAR) to which Barbados is a party.

The Sanctuary is also calling upon the Ministry of Environment and all conservation groups to increase their efforts to educate the mainstream public about the seriousness of wildlife and habitat protection in Barbados.

The Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary occupies 35 acres of the 81 acre RAMSAR wetland at Graeme Hall.  The RAMSAR designation is associated with the 1971 RAMSAR Convention on Wetlands Treaty for internationally significant areas of biodiversity.

More information about the Sanctuary can be found at www.graemehall.com.

BFP Editor’s Note: The above media release was printed exactly as received via email from the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary. Our previous articles about the lack of police response to crimes committed against the Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary can be found at…

August 19, 2009: Barbados Police Again Fail To Uphold Law At Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary & RAMSAR Protected Wetlands

April 1, 2009: Barbados Advocate Covers Up Police Failure To Respond To Theft, Gunshots At Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary

March 30, 2009: Another Reason Why Barbados Police Commissioner Dottin Should Be Fired – Police Again Fail To Answer Call For Help

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

Are CCTV Video Cameras Effective In Solving Crimes?

Barbados crime CCTVBarbados politicians and senior police officers have often been heard talking about installing Closed Circuit Television Cameras (CCTV) as as method of deterring and solving crimes. Half the time the politicians talk about CCTV though, I get the impression that they are merely offering the “crime solution idea” soup de jour.

It seems common sense that CCTVs on Bridgetown streets would deter crimes in their coverage area, but would the crimes simply be moved to other areas of the city not under the watchful lens?

And what if we disregard the deterrent effect of video cameras and just consider how many crimes are solved through video cameras…

How many crimes are solved in a year, say, per thousand installed video cameras?

London has more video cameras than any other urban area in the world so they know about this.

So what do you think… how many crimes are solved in a year per thousand CCTV video cameras?

Any guesses? A thousand video cameras on Bridgetown streets… how many crimes per year would that solve?

The answer is… Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law, Police, Politics

Barbados Newspaper Editor Threatened by Senior Advisor to Prime Minister David Thompson – Police Investigation Launched

Prime Minister David Thompson & Henry Hartley

Prime Minister Thompson & Henry Hartley

Mr. Hartley Henry, the senior political advisor to Barbados Prime Minister David Thompson and, many say, the primary engineer of the DLP’s election victory in the 2007/2008 campaign, is under police investigation for alleged threats to the editor of the Sunday Sun newspaper. The editor, Carol Martindale, says that Mr. Henry threatened to destroy her reputation unless she printed a story about a DLP political survey in a certain manner.

Ms. Martindale was warned by Mr. Henry to “Do the right thing” or else face the consequences of a destroyed reputation. According to the account in The Nation newspaper, Mr. Henry told Martindale “If the story is not played the right way, I would turn Barbados against you.” Henry also said that The Nation newspaper for the last couple of months had become the “mouthpiece” of Opposition leader Mia Mottley.

As shocking as this one incident might seem to foreigners, most Bajans are not at all surprised. Not in the least bit.

Officially, Barbados is happy to cash in on the perception of the country as “Little Britain” with all that moniker implies about rule of law, public order, democracy and freedoms – but the reality is quite different. Bajans know that our country has not enjoyed true freedom of the press in two decades or more.

Nothing really changes as each new government seeks to gain control of the news media through intimidation, withholding government advertising, outright threats and the occasional use of bullies and even the police to oh-so-carefully deliver a very serious message to uncooperative journalists. These abuses tend to get worse the longer a party is in power and have been documented publicly by professional journalists themselves. (For details, see the list of sources at the end of this article. Note: I’ll have to fill them in later on Monday when I get home from night shift.)

Bajans also know that over the years government officials have been guilty of some terrible abuses of power not just against journalists and news organisations, but also against ordinary citizens and foreigners alike. Corrupt and abusive government officials have destroyed people’s lives and their businesses – safe in the knowledge that no elected or appointed Barbados government official has ever faced charges for these abuses of power. Ever. Not a single one.

Arrogance of Power

In our opinion, the problem with Barbados government officials is much deeper than their simple wish to control the press. In Barbados it is normal for elected or appointed officials to quickly develop and openly display a certain arrogance of power.

Prime Minister Thompson’s election campaign promise that only faithful DLP members would “feast at the fatted calf” perfectly illustrates the prevailing attitude that election to office gives politicians a license to profit, to control and to have revenge upon political enemies.

Successive governments – and the current DLP government is no exception – view themselves and their own power as the highest authority in Barbados. Most people in the UK, the USA or Canada have no concept of how Barbados politicians define “rule of law” as whatever is convenient at the moment.

And if the maintenance and consolidation of power requires the purging of opposition supporters from their employment with government agencies like the UDC, or cutting government advertising to newspapers that don’t support the party in power – government princes like Hartley Henry have no problem abusing their power to achieve the goal.

Hartley Henry’s threatening of newspaper editors like Carol Martindale is merely a symptom of a deeper corruption that is endemic in our two major political parties. The oppression of journalists under the BLP government of Owen Arthur and Mia Mottley was standard operating procedure. The Thompson government are merely a different bunch using the same abusive techniques as the BLP before them. Hartley Henry’s threats are nothing new.

What has changed is that the Barbados news media is finally screaming rape instead of keeping silent. But this time they have to carry it all the way through and not settle for everything just being forgotten as they did when the police illegally assaulted journalists and falsely charged them with criminal offences.

I hope to God that a tape recording was made of Hartley Henry delivering the threats, and I hope to God that the recording is put on YouTube for everyone to hear. I hope that Carol Martindale has the courage and strength to carry this through to the end.

But most of all, I hope that The Nation and all Barbados journalists have finally decided to stop selling themselves to the highest bidder through covering up embarrassing stories in exchange for government advertising and access to easy stories.

Have things really changed around here?

If this Henry Hartley situation just disappears like happens all the time, Bajans will know the answer.

Further Reading

Jennifer Laszlo alleged threats, sexual harassment by Henry

Jennifer Laszlo alleged threats, sexual harassment by Henry

In 1998 communications expert Jennifer Laszlo of Laszlo & Associates, Inc. sent a letter to Prime Minister Bird of Antigua & Barbuda alleging…

“I suffered repeated unwanted sexual advances, harassment and threats from your then senior advisor, Mr. Hartley Henry. He several times indicated to me that if I did not have a sexual relationship with him, that I would not get paid and that he would claim that I had overcharged. I had and will never have a sexual relationship with Hartley Henry. Now it is being claimed that I overcharged, and I have not been paid. This leaves me suffering from unpaid bills, a liabled reputation, and the pain of ongoing inappropriate sexual harassment by your then senior advisor. It also leave the appearance that the threats of sexual harassment were more than threats.”

Here is the full letter that has been circulating on the internet and via email for some time…

Hartley Henry Jennifer Laszlo Threat (pdf)

As published in The Nation…

THREAT TO SUN EDITOR (online article here)

Published on: 8/23/2009.

EDITOR OF THE SUNDAY SUN, Carol Martindale, yesterday received the threat “to do the right thing” or have her reputation destroyed. The threat came from Hartley Henry, senior political advisor to Prime Minister David Thompson.

Just before 2 p.m. Henry called Martindale to warn her that the results of the poll conducted for the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) and released yesterday get the same Front Page treatment as polls done on behalf of this newspaper.

Henry expressed annoyance with the publication of the past several SUNDAY SUN editions, charging they were geared towards publicising and enhancing the image of Opposition Leader Mia Mottley.

He said: “For the last couple of months the SUNDAY SUN has become the mouthpiece of Mia Mottley. If the story [referring to reports of the CARDES Poll] is not played the right way, I would turn Barbados against you,” he told a shocked Martindale. He also mentioned to her about “doing the right thing”. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ethics, Freedom Of Information, Freedom Of The Press, Human Rights, News Media, Police, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption