Prime Minister Freundel Stuart to Barbados: I don’t care about conflicts of interest, Leroy Parris is my long time friend.

Lesson #492 why the DLP won’t pass Integrity Legislation and political financing rules. Ever.

Barbados PM protecting one of the DLP’s prime financial backers.

Like Finance Minister Sinckler, our accidental Prime Minister Freundel Stuart just doesn’t get it or doesn’t care about Integrity Legislation, Conflicts of Interest and the optics of senior Ministers of Government cavorting with someone who at the very least is at the center of a scandal involving billions of dollars missing, and who should be under serious investigation.

But it’s okay because Leroy Parris is “a long-time friend and a one-time client” – not to mention a major financial supporter of the Democratic Labour Party. Oh… Stuart didn’t mention that financial support to the DLP, did he?

Prime Minister Stuart says it doesn’t help the CLICO situation to try to exploit a photograph of Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler talking to Parris (photo above) at the just run Gold Cup horse racing event. Stuart doesn’t mention that the photo was taken at a private little gathering where ordinary folks weren’t invited. He tries to make it like they just bumped into each other on the street.

So according to Prime Minister Stuart, victims and taxpayers should just shut up about CLICO conflicts of interest and if they don’t, the PM will blame the victims when they receive pennies or nothing on their “investments”.

That’s quite a different response than taken by the Government of Trinidad & Tobago, that set up a Commission of Enquiry to look into the CL Financial – CLICO debacle: including the examination of how relationships, conflicts of interest and election financing concerns contributed to the collapse.

What is it that causes Mr. Stuart to tell ordinary Barbadians that the relationship between government and Leroy Parris is none of their business?

Is it “honour amongst thieves” and all that? Or is it that Leroy Parris and CLICO funded the DLP election campaign that saw David Thompson made Prime Minister? Is it a combination of factors all working together that causes Mr. Stuart to tell ordinary Barbadians that the relationship between government and Leroy Parris is none of their business?

Ladies and gentlemen of the Democratic Labour Party: please excuse us for bothering you. Please continue to enjoy your champagne, lobster pate and your close relationship with the people who stole our future. Sorry for mentioning it. Truly.

Here’s the latest slap in the face of ordinary Bajans from our Prime Minister, Freundel Stuart. Please read it at The Nation, but as usual we’ll reprint it here because they change history every so often at that newspaper…

Prime Minister Stuart: Parris a pal

Prime Minister Freundel Stuart says he’s prepared to let the law take its course with regard to the $10 million lawsuit filed by former chairman Leroy Parris against CLICO.

But, in making his contribution to the 2011-2012 Estimates debate in the House of Assembly yesterday, Stuart also made it clear that he was not about to shun Parris.

In fact, he described Parris as a long-time friend and a one-time client who was definitely not a “leper”.

“I don’t disown him. He’s not a leper. I don’t agree with everything he does. I have never agreed with everything he’s done, but like all other Barbadians he has worked his way up and he has had his ups and downs. But he is not a leper,” the Prime Minister said.

Stuart also noted that if “that estimable gentleman has sued the company for which he has worked, that is a matter the judges will decide”.

Stuart said he himself had a vested interest in CLICO’s recovery and success, and that it would not help to try to exploit a photograph of Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler talking to Parris at the just run Gold Cup horse racing event.

Earlier this month, lawyers for Parris filed writs in the High Court claiming more than $10 million from CLICO Holdings (Barbados) and CLICO International Life Insurance.

According to one writ, to date Parris received about $3.5 million from the company starting with a payment of just over $3.5 million in January 2009 and four payments of $30 000 each last year, the last being paid November 24.

The Prime Minister told MPs that if CLICO had been the only conglomerate to experience collapse in the last two years, he would join in the criticism but he had also seen prestigious companies in North America and Europe fall.

He said the Government was committed “to ensuring that at the level of principal  . . .  ‘pal’ not ‘ple’  . . . the commitment of the Government is to ensure that people get their principal investments in CLICO. I do not resile from that”.


Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Ethics, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

37 responses to “Prime Minister Freundel Stuart to Barbados: I don’t care about conflicts of interest, Leroy Parris is my long time friend.

  1. Disappointed

    The DLP promised they would not like,cheat or lie. Well the voters in the next election will not lie,cheat or steal they will not support you. Mr Stuart and Mr Sinckler you both were appointed by Mr Thompson and I must say wunna are three Crabs in a barrel just pretty talkers who are short on substance. The whole DLP is a total disappointment!

  2. PrettyPolly

    When the PM of Barbados has the audacity to stand up in Parliament and talk this kind off blantant foolishness, then we the people are totally f*** (oops) I mean doomed!

  3. rasta man

    @PRETTY POLLY.: Am in total agreement with you. God help Barbados

  4. rasta man

    And you could also use the word “SCREWED”

  5. I-spy


  6. FearPlay

    Let me see if I have this right – the Chief Justice and Director of Public Prosecutions can associate with whomever they wish as long as the person is a friend and/or a past client, no matter if that individual is embroiled in public financial investigations. That does not pose a problem, no question of perception or conflict of interest, “he’s my friend”.
    Am I missing something here? Am I mistaking ignorance for bravado or arrogance? If this is the attitude after one election victory and an accidental promotion, heaven help us all should this team (used loosely) be returned to power. The gall and stupidity of it all… but this same flagrant display of temporary power that demonstrates a total disregard for us lesser mortals has been seen before on the floor of the same place. It is time to put a stop to this nonsense.

  7. Observer

    It only goes to show who we are dealing with here.

  8. Does anyone care about national productivity??

    Every morning for the past week or two
    THOUSANDS of Bridgetown office workers are coming in to work
    about 45 mins. to 1 hr. later than usual!!

    The Ministry is rebuilding the roadside wall at Station Hill Police Sta.A
    thus blocking one side of an already narrow road.
    This complicate two-way traffic for miles around…I’m not kidding you MILES!!

    Incoming-to-Bridgetown traffic is backed up WAY past Waterford Bottom,
    WAY past the Hothersal roundabout -IN ALL DIRECTIONS,
    North South East and West, including the entire Belle straight stretch
    as far as Norman Niles -and then beyond that!!

    ..not to mention backing up all the way past Hothersal turning and beyond THAT…out into the countryside!
    Thousands upon thousands of cars and their office worker occupants, frustrated daily.

    Is the Barbados Police Force traffic flow superintendent
    even aware of this?
    I very much doubt it.

    Do we even need a solution?
    – remove the un-necessary signage etc. overnight, to let the traffic flow on a morning, and then replace all the blocking mess around 9:30 a.m.

    It doesn’t take very much to screw up traffic flow in St.Michael
    and this is a prime example.
    The effect of this Sta.Hill blockage spreads for about 2-3 miles radius, quite literally
    and it seems like no-one cares a damn about it!

    How much longer is this nonsense going to continue??

    SURELY there are many Gov’t. workers at various Ministries who pass this way every morning, being as inconvenienced as everyone else!
    Do they too see, observe and deduce?
    Does anyone CARE about things like productivity, when ‘their weekend’ starts on Friday around 11 a.m.?
    and you can’t get them to properly start the work-week until after-lunch Mondays?

    As a nation, we are not serious about being productive and efficient.
    We are not ‘ready’ –we are doomed if we don’t soon get up off our lazy butts and join the 21st. Century.

  9. rasta man

    Same situation at Town &Country Planning. I understand there are about 100 applications on one lady’s desk for over two years awaiting a decision. That is productivity for you

  10. Liberal

    What more do you expect Stuart to say.CLICO massively funded the DLP campagne which has made him the accidental P.M.They can remain loyal to their friends but the CLICO issue will be their undoing at the next poll.Ordinary Barbadians are suffering,people looking forward to their pension and annuity payments devastated,but they are sipping champaigne and all the other trappings of the high life and he talkes this utter foolishnes
    like some child.I say send them packing next time at the polls.Errol Barrow must be in total shock at this disgracefull bunch mascarading as his DLP!!

  11. Del Sabado

    I have never known such arrogance, hell no , ignorance, as with the laedership of this government. The bring all their bedroom business to parliament . It is obvious Sinful Sinckler is in bed with the private transport .
    Where have you ever heard of trying to raise revenue for the government by decreasing the taxes and raising the income (busfare). David must have rolled in his grave at this nonsense . Then de blasted slow learner from Garrison School has the absense of mind to try to touch UWI students. ah cann wait fah he ass . Election mek hase cum

  12. bajandave

    Don’t expect any miracles with this CLICO business. Parris will get his big payout (what did he do on a daily basis to justify such a ridiculously high salary?)and life will continue as before, meanwhile unfortunate policyholders will have to hold on for another 10-20 years before they get any return on their investment, if they get anything at all.

  13. just want to know

    The moon does run until day catch it, it then becomes non-existence. What I find distressing is whenever something like this happens the politicians says places like U. S. A , U. K . etc had the same thing. They forget we are not even a million people in this country, what go on there was based on GREED, is the same thing happening in our own little country with not even a million people in it. Come on Mr Stuart and Mr. Sinckler have a heart, we are scrimping and saving and this is what we get for our effort? Look at what going to happen from 1st April, we are going to have to pay pharmacies to dispense our medication, is this what we worked so hard for in our younger days?

  14. grave rules

    @del sabado… “david must have rolled in his grave”.. i think not.. he is too busy running the country

  15. Canajan

    dat mus be campaign champagne dey sipping

  16. 167

    It is alleged that a minister bought a car from Mr Parris and the late P M and current PM got legal work from ClICO. What do you people expect.

    It was also alleged that Mr Parris totally despised Dr. Estwick. If bajans want justice (or revenge) it is time to make Dr. Estwick the Minister of Finance.

    Any serious investigation of CLICO should be done by outsiders, say from England or Canada. I do not see our mendicants doing a fair job of investigating CLICO. It seems of if too many of our top people have been compromised in some way or another.

  17. Del Sabado

    I’m not an attorney , but it seems to me that the obvious course is being overlooked. It would only take one policy holder to drag Clico and by extension Parris before the law courts . If he can say he is prepared to take this route ,isn’t he saying to the policy holders that he sees this as the way he should be treated also. Short pay the furniture store one cent and you are before the court. Someone needs to put a high court judge against the wall to make a decision. One might even consider volunteering his service to the muslim community as a truck driver or pilot. There must be somebody out there that Clico doesn’t own.

  18. Disappointed

    When de people start to riot DEMS gotta tek de blame?

  19. what will they think of next

    I find nothing wrong with what PM said.
    Why are some of you foaming at the mouth?

  20. Mobert

    Be assured that PM Parris is doing his best, so give them a chance, nuh. And Pickering will start soon, ….soon, not sure when it will be completed though, maybe by 2020. But at least it will start soon. Soon enough for elections anyway.

  21. Harry

    Earth calling Fumble Stuart – Time to disown Leroy Ponzi Parris.

  22. yatinkiteasy

    Bunch of crooks and idiots. people should take to the streets in peaceful protest ..these “Kings” need to be overthrown!

  23. what will they think of next

    When investments are made one of two things could happen. You could make serious money or you could loose all your money.
    That is how the game called investing your hard earn money is played. This should be easy to understand.
    Good investments, laugh all the way to the Bank, bad investments cry to the day you die.

  24. 120

    @what will they think of next

    I also see nothing wrong with what the PM said. I don’t understand why the PM should ostracize the man. The policy holders will be happy they will be getting back the principal.

    I would also like to make a suggestion that some sort of biography be created on Parris.

    The man in my opinion has done Barbados, and the wider world well. The company hasn’t suffered because of Mr. Parris, there is also a Trinidad component.

  25. 120

    The policy holders are getting their money from their investment. Why then shouldn’t Parris get the money owed to him?

    Do we know what kind of bonuses other executives work for before we criticize? Do we care?

  26. definitional problems

    WWTTON doesn’t seem to know he difference between a true long term
    investment and casino gambling.

    Perhaps Parris or the policy holders can instruct him on the latter

  27. Duprey and the "Special relationship"

    I would love to see that biography lol!!!

    Leroy is a man beholden to his older friend Lawrence Duprey and the “special relationship” they enjoyed…ask anyone in CLICO

    Given his limited intellectual scope I am sure he used what he had…and “Larry” wanted…to get him to the top…or is that bottom?…of the pile!

    Then you put together the “special relationship” David had with Leroy…and Freundel’s unmarried status….and where do you get?


  28. Rubberman

    Poster above ‘D..’ Stop spreading vivacious and magnaminous rumours.

  29. Cool dude

    No one held a gun to the heads of the investors. I do not want any of my money used to repay those gamblers. You take a risk and you win or you loose. If anyone should be sued it should be the Supervisor of Insurance or the Governwment in general.

  30. rasta man

    Anyone know a “GOOD” lawyer?
    I want to take out a case against British American to get my investment.

  31. Fred Flintstone

    @ Cool Dude

    Maybe if the bank you have your money in went under you would understand what these people are going through. Placing your money in a bank is a gamble as well. You don’t expect the relevant managers to be reckless with your deposit.

    We have people in the caribbean that may not have a pension to live on after working 30+ years. This is nothing to joke about, the country needs proper regulation, but someone needs to let us know why this has happened. I for one will be very risk averse going foward and anyone or any organisation tries to tell me I can get a return on investment better than government bonds or the bank I will not be interested in parting with my money.

    I hope the governments across the caribbean are able to clear this up. No one in high society will be held responsible for this. However we will continue to jail the man on the block for a couple grammes, while people across the region loose millions of dollars collectively and their lives ruined.

  32. What you all have to say now that St Kitts Prime Minister say Leroy Parris is also his friend, all Dems should really stop buying that Nation newspaper.

  33. rasta man

    Is it my imagination or is Mr Stuart’s nose getting as big as his head????
    Also can anyone confirm if he is married or not?

  34. Pieter Pieper

    Nothing wrong with THIEVING lawyers who overcharge and steal their clients’money and property!Nothing wrong with THIEVING insurance executives who operate a Ponzi scheme ! Nothing wrong with THIEVING politicians who demand kickbacks ! Nothing wrong with THIEVING government time and property !Especially if you’re rich or have connections! Only the poor go to jail ! No need for accountability,integrity or transparency !Just become an insurance executive,lawyer or politician and you can get away with anything in Barbados.What a country !

  35. John

    The economy is based on teefing which bolsters the GDP.

    It happens at all levels.

  36. Grabbler

    Usually when somebody say that they don’t care that is only to hide the hurt they feel from caring. What do you people in Bim expect? Should Poor Freundel carry the cross and all the world go free? He is in somebody else’s house for he is only holding things together until the rightful owner and beneficiary is proclaimed. Will that the will be read out loud. All those that have ears to hear should harken. Who will answer the charges? OH WILLIAM WILL IT FALL TO MY SUCCESSOR WHO TALKS LIKE ME LOOKS LIKE AND EVEN DRESSES LIKE OH MAN!!!!!!!!
    Cant take my eyes off of you.

  37. Pingback: Prime Minister Freundel Stuart refuses to read CLICO auditor’s report damning friend Leroy Parris | Barbados Free Press