“Arthur knows that if Sinckler gets it right, as Minister of Finance, especially coming out of what many regard as the second worst global economic crisis in history – then Owen Arthur’s allege grip loosens and he immediately becomes even more irrelevant to a rapidly changing Barbados.”
Submitted anonymously through France!
Based on the advice from Prime Minister Stuart, it is better to explain a man than to waste time criticising him. Politics in Barbados has become predictable. You can expect Owen Arthur to give the impression that only he can run the Barbados economy. You can expect him to repeat himself over and over, even as he alleges that the economy is worsening. He can be expected to criticise Finance Minister Christopher Sinckler, who is merely trying to fix some of the very problems, which were manufactured during Owen Arthur’s tenure. And, you can expect Owen Arthur to spend every passing day trying to give the impression that Minister Sinckler does not know what he is doing.
This is understandable, even though a colossal waste of effort and energy but Arthur knows that if Sinckler gets it right, as Minister of Finance, especially coming out of what many regard as the second worst global economic crisis in history – then Owen Arthur’s allege grip loosens and he immediately becomes even more irrelevant to a rapidly changing Barbados.
The reason is simple: Arthur’s campaign to become Prime Minister more times than Errol Barrow – is that he alone can manage Barbados and its economy. In essence, the success of Christopher Sinckler can determine Owen Arthur’s political future. Talk about making yourself vulnerable! That is a very serious predicament but nevertheless, one which accurately describes Owen Arthur’s reality.
Barbadians will never forget that during his budget reply on Tuesday, August 16th 2011 (exactly two months before the first anniversary of him and four others having snatched power from the former Leader of the Opposition) that Owen Arthur launched (what might have been intended as a missile) which failed to have the desire effect. In fact, it back-fired! But at least he is consistent because, about three years ago, Owen Arthur also called a Media Conference at the University of the West Indies (UWI) Cave Hill (on the very morning that Parliament was meeting) and launched an ugly attack on Barbados’ first female Leader of the Opposition and begged Barbadians to find her “unacceptable.”
Opportunist Attack on our first female Leader of the Opposition, Mia Mottley
No one expected that worse could come. But when the health of the late Prime Minister began to deteriorate, a meeting was held at Prior Park; five signatures were attached to a letter, which was addressed to the Governor General and the former female Opposition Leader was charged by the five; tried and sentenced and then invited the next day to a trial. Since that day, while the five that remove her seem to be obsessed with gaining State power and blaming the DLP for the current recession – in a humble and dignified way – the ousted former Opposition Leader continues to do positive things all across Barbados, in the interest of the people.
It is crystal clear that Mia Mottley’s motivation is not a desire for power but a life dedicated to service and making the problems of the ordinary people, her problem. In January, perhaps when it was realised that things could get even tougher for the people of Barbados, the Hon. Mia Amor Mottley, Q.C., M.P., launched an “Adopt a Family,” initiative and encouraged those with the financial capacity to make a difference – to help at least one family cope during this challenging period.
Busted on Camera
But what could have caused Arthur to give the impression to the entire country that he was not at Cabinet the day/s when the issue of VECO and the Prison was discussed? In case you missed it, here is what Owen Arthur said in his reply: “And Sir you know I, I sometimes wish I was at Cabinet when that came, but I accept responsibility for it.”
The impression was also given that Senator Darcy Boyce was the head of the Technical Committee. But, a check with page 3, paragraph 4 of the Ministerial Statement laid by the then Attorney General, Dale Marshall, in Parliament on October 16, 2007 – does not support this other “horrible allegation” that Darcy Boyce headed that Technical Committee.
PM Stuart and Minister Sinckler defend the honour of the former BLP Cabinet
It was only when Prime Minister Stuart gave the actual dates and also, during his wrap-up, when Finance Minister Sinckler gave the dates when the matter was discussed by the Cabinet (which showed beyond doubt that contrary to what Owen Arthur had told the House, he had in fact, Chaired those meetings) that he (Owen Arthur) contradicted what he had told the House on Tuesday. Barbadians again saw the worse of a leader who has fallen from grace and were reminded why he was dumped by them in 2008.
Even more damaging, is page 4, paragraph 2 of the same Ministerial Statement laid by the then Attorney General, Dale Marshall, in Parliament on October 16, 2007, which reads: “The Cabinet at its meeting of May 26, 2005 accepted the recommendation of the Technical Committee and agreed that negotiations with VECO USA Inc. should commence in order to conclude an agreement for the construction and financing of the new prisons at Dodd, St. Philip under a Public-Private Partnership agreement.”
No one has so far called on Owen Arthur to resign and perhaps, given the event of October 18th 2010 and the terms of the “Prior Park Accord,” no one will. Owen Arthur once said that a leader should be feared. But it gets even most horrible! He is now telling the country that he alone prepared past budgets and that members of his Cabinet only saw them or even heard what they contained, when he was presenting them in the House. Barbados is a democracy, and the pattern of behaviour Arthur described is clearly not ‘good governance.’
Owen Arthur alleges that Barbadians are suffering badly but does not seem to have any ideas how to help them, ‘at this defining moment.’ Becoming Prime Minister of Barbados, again and for a period longer than Errol Barrow seems to be his priority and motivation. He does not seem to realise that his lack of effort to do things to help, even people in his Constituency, “now” – when it matters most – is crystal clear confirmation that he is totally irrelevant to the needs and immediate circumstance of even the people of St. Peter!