Daily Archives: May 28, 2010

Land expropriation in Barbados – A history of non-payment when government takes your land!

This month’s land expropriation victim is Mr. Rawle Mason

The Barbados government has a long history of expropriating privately-owned land and then not paying the owners. Here, we call it “compulsory acquisition” but most of the world knows the process as “expropriation“. In most civilized countries there are laws and protocols in place to prevent abuse of the process through politicians coming into personal possession of, or profiting from, lands the government expropriated.

Barbados has no such laws to protect property owners.

In 2007, former Barbados Chief Town Planner Leonard St. Hill revealed that the land owners were owed almost $200 million for land the Barbados government took from them for “public purposes”. That’s 200 million dollars of land that the Barbados government expropriated but never paid for!

Don’t be mislead by the term “public purposes” because as former Government Minister Gline Clarke proved, it’s nothing for a politician to expropriate private land for “public housing” and then – POOF!!! – a year or two later the same politician is living in a house built on that same land his government expropriated!

What should have happened to Government Minister Gline Clarke!

The American or British press wouldn’t stand for such a thing. In Britain those television trucks would be camped out in front of the politician’s home, blocking his driveway and demanding answers. In Barbados, however, the regular news media hasn’t mentioned Minister Clarke’s story in four years – which tells you something about press freedom and political control of the news media in Barbados.

Yet another land owner abused by the Barbados government

This month’s victim of land expropriated by government and not paid for is Mr. Rawle Mason. The government took his land 15 years ago for a road and never paid him.

Yup… that’s right folks… the BLP took Mr. Mason’s land 15 years ago and he’s been waiting for payment ever since. They want to pay him a fraction of the true value, and the government claims he agreed to the sale and the price 15 years ago even though he never heard about it until after it was completed!

Isn’t that special?

Nope. Not in the least.

Mr. Mason’s story is just the latest in a long line of similar events. In Barbados there are no rules prohibiting politicians from profiting by their offices, so these scandals happen regularly… not that anything is done about them.

Barbados property investors beware!

Here are some Barbados land expropriation scandals from the past few years, followed by the latest story involving Mr. Mason. Once again as is our practice, we encourage our readers to not believe Barbados Free Press. That’s right… don’t believe a word we say. Go out and do your own research online and your own due diligence about land expropriations in Barbados. Read some old stories, talk to people who were mentioned in the newspapers. Call them up and see what happened. Call up the politicians and ask them.

Then make up your own mind and what happens to some poor souls on this rock. They work hard and buy a piece of land. Maybe they have foresight and purchase a lot that they think will become more valuable because of its location or features… and then along comes a few politicians who expropriate the land and personally profit from doing so.

Don’t think that happens here? Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ethics, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Nation News removes “Barbados Free Press” from citizen’s letter

Dear Barbados Free Press,

For your information the Nation News removed all reference to “Barbados Free Press” when they published a letter from Jason Stephens.

I thought that you and your readers would be interested in that piece of information.

… signed “a friend”

Here is the letter the Nation changed with “at Barbados Free Press” inserted where they removed it:

Is Govt slacking off on the environment?

I WOULD like to offer my congratulations to The Future Centre Trust, volunteers and businesses that helped make “No Plastic Bag Day” on May 8 the success it needed to be.

Not forgetting the people who bought the reusable bags. The same good wishes cannot however be aimed at the Government for not helping in any way. I read an article AT BARBADOS FREE PRESS stating that the Environment Ministry failed to attend planning meetings claiming “more important commitments”. Reports are that Government did not waive import duty on the environmentally friendly reuseable shopping bags. The outcome of which meant the bags had to be sold at a greater than desired price.

Once again the Government reneging on an election promise – to keep the cost of living down. On what planet is the DLP government on that it cannot see the need for an effective and coherent environment policy? This is not necessarily just this administration’s fault. However, only last week Sue Springer, vice president of the Barbados Hotel and Tourism Association was asking both the Democratic Labour Party and the Barbados Labour Party, where was the Environment Act that had been promised for the last 15-20 years? The world’s climate is changing and we all need to do what we can to reduce our own damage to the environment, even here in Barbados. Everyone must play their part in combating climate change, however big or small. It all makes a difference!

The Government must act and take the environment and climate change issue seriously and not pay its usual lip service.

Jason Stephens

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Filed under Barbados, Environment, Freedom Of The Press, Politics, Wildlife