Category Archives: Nigeria

Nigeria Barbados student programme disaster – Donna St. Hill says Sharon Brathwaite unable to account for major funds

Nigerian Deputy Governor Utuama and Donna St. Hill

Nigerian Deputy Governor Amos Utuama and Donna St. Hill

Barbados Today journalist Emmanuel Joseph interviewed Donna St. Hill – programme director for the Nigeria-Barbados student disaster that continues to unfold.

The full interview is worth your time to read if only to see once again how these foreign student and employment initiatives always fall apart in Barbados. Always. Everybody tries to squeeze a little bit of the funds for themselves and their brothers and in the end there are never enough funds to complete the original goals and standards of the project. All the time. Every time.

But this time there were some major feeders at the trough… or so says Donna St. Hill.

From what St. Hill says, once again there was little or no oversight of employees in Barbados as St. Hill ran her end from Africa (taking her little bit of squeeze for sure).

Now St. Hill is blaming Barbadian Sharon Brathwaite for misdirecting, misspending and generally being unable to account for hundreds of thousands of dollars over a relatively short four month period. It’s the students who are suffering in the end, and the money is gone gone gone.

Sharon Brathwaite told her side of the story to Barbados Today (see article I’m Sorry)

Some selected quotes from the Donna St. Hill interview…

“My company Donna St Hill International manages this contract… I live in Africa, so I hire local project administrators, of which Miss Brathwaite [Sharon] was the one who was working on the Barbados project…   I thought that with some close supervision, more mentoring, she could achieve more than what she even knew she was capable of.”

“I have heard Sharon Brathwaite had travelled to Nigeria to see my clients, to see how she could, not take over the responsibilities and the headaches, but control more of the financing and have it paid directly to her. That failed.”

“So at no time could we think about bringing the money back because every other month we were coming and it needed to be there –– you know, salaries to pay and some small things, but certainly not $750,000 . . . . We are all shocked because I know what I have approved; and even with some seepage here and there, it can’t be right.”

“So what happened with that money? Well we are trying to find out.”

Read the entire story at Barbados Today

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Filed under Africa, Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Nigeria

Nigeria sends Deputy Governor Amos Utuama to investigate allegations against himself and alleged mistress in Barbados!

Donna-St-Hill Barbados Nigeria Utuama

A few days ago, we reported that 90 Nigerian students are alleging that Deputy Governor Amos Utuama and his mistress Donna St. Hill pocketed programme funding for the Delta Youth Trainees in Barbados, causing the students to be shifted from the nice Infinity Beach Hotel to an inland dump of a hotel with no running water and slops for food.

Now, just like you’d expect, the Nigerian government sent the subject of the allegations to Barbados to investigate himself!

No problem, folks! We can write the results of the investigation right now… everything be fine. just a misunderstanding. everything is A-okay.

There.

That takes care of that!

Nigerian mission

A HIGH-LEVEL NIGERIAN GOVERNMENTAL TEAM is in Barbados on a fact-finding mission pertaining to the 87 Nigerian students here on a nine-month educational programme.

Deputy Governor of Delta State, Professor Amos Utuama, landed in Barbados last night, while Acting Nigerian High Commissioner to Trinidad, Ganiyu Adeyemi, his deputy Frank Nmadu and financial director, Paul Ataime, arrived on Saturday from Trinidad.

The acting high commissioner and his team met with all of the students at the Casa Grande Hotel in St Philip, where they are being housed, while they also held discussions with facilitator of the programme Donna St Hill, former administrator Sharon Brathwaite, who has been relieved of her duties, as well as Asha “Ram” Mirchandani, owner of the hotel. Reports indicate that the team also did a walk-through of the hotel, which has been a bone of contention with the students, and they were also on hand to examine the meals being served, among other things.

read the article at The Nation News

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Filed under Barbados, Nigeria

Nigerian Students accuse Deputy State Governor Amos Utuama of running Barbados Trinidad scam with his alleged mistress Donna St. Hill

 Donna-St-Hill Barbados Nigeria Utuama

Barbadian Donna St. Hill alleged mistress of Nigerian Delta State deputy governor Amos Utuama

We might describe this happening as “The Nigerian Scam”, but the rest of the world is calling it “The Barbados Scam.”

What we know from local and African media is that 90 students from Nigeria’s Delta Youth Training Programme paid for 9 months accommodation in Barbados at the Infinity Beach Hotel. The students’ management team stayed at the hotel in December, and the students approved of their residence after they were shown photos and videos.

When the students arrived in Barbados they were taken to a semi-abandoned dump of a hotel, and found themselves pulling pails of water from the swimming pool to flush the toilets and to bathe.

Now reports are surfacing in Barbados and Trinidad of unpaid bills by the organisers.

Some of the African press are reporting that Barbadian Donna St. Hill and her alleged lover Nigerian Delta State deputy governor Amos Utuama pocketed money. Africans are calling the story “The Barbados Scam”.

Sahara Reporters published an account that held nothing back…

Neglected Delta Youth Trainees In Trinidad And Barbados Cry Out, Accuse Deputy Governor And His Alleged Mistress Of Abuse

“As I’m talking to you now we cannot take our baths because there is no water, some of us had to start fetching water from the pool. Do you know that we almost lost one of us yesterday due to food poisoning as we were told by the doctors? The issue of food is nothing to write home about. I repeat, we have sent a series of messages to the State Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, to come to our aid, but ‘til date we are yet to get a reply from him,” a student told SaharaReporters.

Though the program advertised itself as one that would train students on agriculture, tourism, hospitality, and culinary arts, students now claim the entire program is a “scam.”    Continue reading

26 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Nigeria, Trinidad and Tobago

Prime Minister Owen Arthur “invested” YOUR money in Nigeria. A predictable result.

Millions stolen with not one solar water heater made

by RLL

The short story: In 2006, your BLP Owen Arthur government “invested” $2.4 million dollars into a Nigerian solar water heater project. The Nigerian factory was never finished, not one water heater was made and your money is gone.

Question #1: Nigeria? What was Arthur thinking?

Question #2: For all the BLP “joint business ventures”, name one that was truly successful as a business.

There is the BLP hype about Owen Arthur being a brilliant economist, and then there is the reality. Owen Arthur borrowed 2.4 million dollars in your name, loaned it threw it away in Nigeria on a project that any drunk (except our drunk) knew would fail – and now you and your children have to pay.

Not one job was created in Barbados or Nigeria, and your money is not only gone – it is untraceably gone. There was no accountability built into the project to ensure that the money “invested” on behalf of Barbados taxpayers was used as intended.

Your government “invested” $2.4 million dollars of your money in Nigeria, one of the most corrupt countries in the world. What did they think would happen?

Who took the money?

Nigeria. Joint business venture with our tax dollars. Everybody knew what was going to happen.

Owen Arthur is truly an idiot… or… did he or anyone else in government have a piece of the action as a shareholder, supplier or consultant?

Somebody in your government probably made a quick five or ten percent on your lost $2.4 million.

Without transparency and accountability laws, we’ll never know. In any event, conflicts of interest like that are not illegal in Barbados. Your government officials are free to take kickbacks consultancy and supplier positions with companies that benefit from government grants, loans and contracts.

Compared to some of the past hits, the Nigerian solar water heater scam was a relatively small loss, but it perfectly illustrates why our country is on a downward slope without integrity, transparency and accountability laws. Once in power, the politician piggies have a field day and there is nothing that can be done.

Further Reading

You should read the news article at Barbados Today: Water heater write-off, but we’ll reprint the entire article here because the Bajan news media often removes or modifies news stories to change history and the BT gang did that when they worked at The Nation. Continue reading

31 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Energy, Freedom Of Information, Nigeria

Nigerian Ambassador: Barbados Foreign Minister refuses to see me!

Ambassador John Musa tells Nigerian press of “discord”, “deteriorating situation” with Barbados

Barbados Minister of Foreign Affairs, Senator Maxine McClean, refuses to receive the Nigerian Ambassador. According to Ambassador Musa (also called Musa John Jen), this is because the image of Nigeria has “sunk to the gutters” in the Caribbean.

How right the Ambassador is! Can anyone in Barbados recount even one successful joint venture between Bajan business and Nigerians? Continue reading

26 Comments

Filed under Africa, Barbados, Business & Banking, Nigeria

‘District 9’ Alien Movie Drawing Criticism – “A Racist Movie About Racism…”

District 9 Racism

Unless you’ve been on another planet for the past few weeks, you’ve probably heard something about ‘District 9’ – a science fiction movie shot in Johannesburg, South Africa – where stranded alien visitors become the victims of a new apartheid.

Nope, I haven’t seen it, and yes I’d love to… but some reviewers have been taking the position that District 9 isn’t just about racism – it is racist itself in its stereotypical portrayal of blacks and Nigerians in particular.

How is the movie racist?

Well, to discuss that subject one has to decide to ignore the following reality…

WARNING: Plot Spoilers Ahead!

So there. Don’t say we didn’t warn you…

Okay, to start things off here are a few quotes from blogger D.C. Girl At the Movies

The filmmaker, Neill Blomkamp’s heart was in the right place, but he didn’t quite grasp his own topic. Because of that, DISTRICT 9’s take on issues of xenophobia and race has a perspective and frame that is itself laden with those very issues.

Basically, it’s a ‘RACE MOVIE’ with the same clichés I spoke about in this post on both the alien and human front.

(snip)

..And the real-live black people in the movie?? You know, the ones Blomkamp is basing his alien population on?

Ooga-booga negroes who think *eating* the aliens will somehow give them their ~*magic*~, gun-toting gangstas, hos, and yes, we even have a barely-there sidekick who is repeatedly called ‘boy’.

He might have been trying to be ~*edgy*~ironic when he did this, which seems to be all the rage these days, but I’m not feeling that when those attempting it, don’t grasp the subject themselves. You can’t say anything to the populace about race and still be in remedial classes yourself.

Nothing like a good African Cannibal & Inter-Species Prostitution Movie!

Carrying the observations about Hollywood racial stereotypes a little bit further is our friend Nicole Stamp at her Pageslap blog. The following excerpt is taken from Nicole’s article District 9 is racist

If you look at the film as an apartheid allegory, it has problems right off the bat. The aliens are loathsome, trash-eating vermin who fight endlessly, destroy property for no reason, and piss on their own homes, which isn’t a truthful or flattering allegorical comparison for actual black South Africans under apartheid. Apartheid is terrible because humans were denied rights. The “apartheid” of these aliens isn’t that terrible- it’s kind of justifiable, because they’re actually dangerous, violent and destructive.

(snip)

The Nigerians have a wailing “witch doctor”. Who instructs them to eat the aliens. And they do it. Bloody, wriggling, and raw, of course.

We’re told that the black prostitutes “service” the aliens sexually. ARE YOU EFFING KIDDING ME??!

And when Wikus’ arm grows a claw, the Nigerian gang boss starts licking his chops, eager to commit cannibalism.

Yup, that’s Hollywood’s Africa, isn’t it. Black Africans shown as degenerate savages who’ll have sex with non-humans and are pretty damn eager to eat people.

Disgusting.

The thing that really upsets me is that most people who see this movie won’t question, or even notice, this incredibly racist portrayal. It wasn’t even necessary for the plot, and in fact the racist elements actually created some plot holes.

What Do You Think?

Google “District 9 racist” and you’ll see how this discussion about the movie is taking off, with good people finding themselves on opposite sides of the arguments.

It will be interesting to see how this movie does in theatres in the Caribbean and, I guess, in South Africa. Is ‘District 9’ fatally flawed by racism in the making of the movie? Will black audiences notice or care? Is the criticism justified?  Do the critics realize that some of the nasty values and behaviors portrayed in the movie (cannibalism, rape, rape to cure aids) aren’t exactly unknown today on the continent?

Is the criticism justified? Once again, I haven’t seen District 9, but I have that impression. Nonetheless I’m wanting to see ‘District 9’ anyway for two reasons…

1/ The discussion of race, culture, history and the media always interests me.

2/ I love a good shoot-em-up!

Cliverton

Further Reading

Beliefnet: District 9 (Review)

Beliefnet: District 9 – About Racism or Racist?

Racialicious: Shrimpin’ Ain’t Easy – A Look At District 9

Sony Pictures: District 9 Official Website

Wikipedia: District 9

12 Comments

Filed under Africa, Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, Nigeria, Race

Shell Pays Up In Nigerian Human Rights & Ken Saro-Wiwa Execution Case

In the lawsuit, the families of the Ogoni nine alleged Shell conspired with the military government to capture and hang the men. Shell was also accused of a series of other alleged human rights violations, including working with the army to bring about killings and torture of Ogoni ­protesters.

The company was alleged to have provided the Nigerian army with vehicles, patrol boats and ammunition, and to have helped plan raids and terror campaigns against villages.

Supporters of the legal action said the fact that Shell had walked away from the trial suggested the company had been anxious about the evidence that would have been presented had it gone ahead. Stephen Kretzmann, director of Oil Change International, said Shell “knew the case was overwhelming against them, so they bought their way out of a trial”…

… from the Guardian story Shell pays out $15.5m over Saro-Wiwa killing

Shell To Pay US$15.5 Million Over Nigerian Government Execution Of Nine Activists

Ken Saro-Wiwa - "Shell has blood on its hands"

Ken Saro-Wiwa - "Shell has blood on its hands"

Considering that Shell makes about US$3 million dollars profit per hour – every hour of every day – we’d say they got off pretty lightly for their environmental rape of Nigeria and (denied) complicity in the hangings of nine innocent Nigerians who wanted clean air, water and soil for their children.

Why did Shell settle at the last moment before the trial was due to begin in New York City?

Because going to trial would have exposed the truth about Shell in Nigeria to the whole world. US$15.5 million is pocket change to make risk go away.

What is the Lesson for Barbados Farmers Coping With Shell Oil’s Barbados Pipeline Spills?

Barbado Environment Denis Lowe (left) remains silent on the Shell Oil spill since his election.

Since his election, Barbados Environment Minister Denis Lowe (left) is suddenly silent on Shell Oil spill.

Perhaps the lesson in Barbados should be to sue the hell out of Shell. After 15 years of Shell ducking and dodging their responsibility, the Shell Barbados pipeline spill case needs to go to court.

We’d advise the Barbados Government to charge Shell with environmental offenses of failing to keep records, spilling petroleum and failing to clean up the spill – except that Barbados has no environmental legislation. That’s right folks – we don’t even have a law that requires Shell Oil to check their pipes and tanks every day for leaks.

Welcome to Barbados: where we have no hazardous materials standards and companies can pollute at will without worrying about the consequences.

How much did Shell Oil “donate” to the “political campaigns” of the DLP and BLP?

Oh, sorry… no legal requirement for anyone to reveal that, either!

Further Reading

Wall Street Journal: Shell Settles Nigeria Case

Times Online: Shell agrees $15.5m settlement over death of Saro-Wiwa and eight others

BFP: Shell Oil Announces Pipeline Spill A Non-Issue – Barbados News Media & Government Ask Zero Questions Of Company Hired To “Ensure Buy-In” To Shell Strategies

BFP: Shell Oil Pollutes And Runs In Barbados. After 15 Years Government Has The Answer: Committee Of Politicians

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Filed under Barbados, Crime & Law, Disaster, Environment, Ethics, Nigeria, Oil, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Barbadian Stranded In Nigeria For Past 45 Years !

gwendolyn-joseph-barbadosHer accent and physical appearance easily gives her away as a foreigner, but few people know the pathetic story behind the sojourn of 87-year-old Gwendolyn Joseph in Nigeria for the past 45 years…

Continue reading one of the strangest stories you have seen in a long time at Punch of Nigeria

22 Comments

Filed under Barbados, Nigeria

Barbados Seeks Closer Ties With Nigeria – How Much Will It Cost Bajan Taxpayers?

Nigeria’s High Commissioner to Barbados, H.E. Musa John Jen, is calling for direct airline flights between Barbados and Nigeria as well as business and cultural exchange. And what could be more natural for two countries that share common historical and family ties?

It all sounds so mutually beneficial and again, “natural” for Bajans to want to fill in this part of our missing heritage. Especially if we are unable to trace our roots back any further than a mis-named ancestor in the Barbados slave registries, there is a hole that needs to be filled on both a personal and a national level. That is why so many of us turn our hearts towards Africa and why some even consciously reject the parts of our history and culture associated with names like Horatio Nelson.

Nigerian Aviation - Exciting & Unprofitable

Nigerian Aviation - Exciting & Unprofitable

Time For A Reality Check

The Nigerian High Commissioner to Barbados recently spoke at the inaugural Nigerian Tourism Expo 2008 held at Hilton Barbados and his words made sense on the surface, but each of us should ask “How much will these plans cost me personally?”

How much are YOU willing to pay from YOUR tax money to support a direct air link with Nigeria?

How do we know it will cost you money? Simple… if a Nigeria – Barbados direct flight was economically viable, market forces would already have it in place. For those with short memories, may we suggest that the recent Ghana-Barbados direct air link debacle should be enough to make one pause before committing good money after bad to another tenuous Africa link.

In the case of the failed Ghana flight, Barbados is still stuck paying the entire cost while those who organised the scam whistled all the way to bank.

Our view: No more Barbados government money should be spent trying to push air links to Africa. The arguments of the Nigerian High Commissioner are emotional, and not based in fiscal reality.

You want a snapshot of the next five years? Try British Midland Airways ending Barbados service.

A Barbados to Africa direct flight in this economy? That duck will never fly on it’s own.

14 Comments

Filed under Africa, Aviation, Barbados, Nigeria

SHOCKING: Hospital Nurses In Barbados Allowed To Practice Without License Or Proper Training!

Unqualified Nurses Allowed To Work For As Long As Six Months!

That nurse who looked after you or your child at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital last week might have previously failed the General Nursing Examination.

The story of this outrageous abuse is carried in the Nation News article Nurses Must Go.

The Nigerian nurses were hired, brought to Barbados and allowed to work even though they were not qualified and could not pass the basic nursing exam.

Even after this expose, the National Union of Public Workers has the stupidity to insist that the recently fired unqualified nurses be paid for the entire two years of their contract.

As to the previous and current Ministers of Health… what do they say about this idiocy? What do the hospital Board of Directors have to say for themselves?

Apparently the professional “journalists” at the Nation News never thought to interview anybody in charge and ask some deep professional questions like, “Have you lost your mind?” or “What the hell were you thinking when you hired unqualified nurses to look after our children?”

What is it that our leaders don’t get about setting and maintaining standards for the public good?

One of the jobs of governments everywhere is to set and enforce standards that are in the public interest – especially in critical areas where mistakes can cause grave consequences.

We don’t let plumbers or carpenters or teachers wake up on Monday and decide that they now want to fly airliners or design office buildings on Tuesday!

But we allowed unqualified nurses to treat our sick and injured.

We’re there any “incidents” involving unqualified nurses? Were any patients injured?

Will somebody please tell me why the QEH Board of Directors shouldn’t be fired this minute?

39 Comments

Filed under Africa, Health, Nigeria

Ikael Tafari Passes On – Will The Barbados Africa Connection Thrive Without Him?

Ikael Tafari Was Much More Than The Public Face Of The Regional Pan African Movement

Doctor Ikael Tafari passed on in Trinidad while attending a conference. The Nation News article (link here) provides some family and personal background but cannot even begin to cover his life’s work as the driving Caribbean force for Pan Africanism and closer ties with Africa.

We at Barbados Free Press had often disagreed with Doctor Tafari but respected his energy and devotion to his cause. Most of us live and die without impacting the larger world, but that cannot be said about Ikael Tafari. It would be foolish to say that the “Pan African” movement in the Caribbean depends upon any one person, but movements often wax and wane over the years on the basis of a single leader.

None of us at BFP can guess at how the loss of Ikael Tafari will impact the Caribbean Pan African Movement. We are not only thinking of his management and support of the Commission for Pan African Affairs, we are also considering Ikael Tafari’s role as the ideological crusader for the movement.

Dr. Tafari Had Been Removed As CPAA Director Within The Past Few Days

As recently as May 27, 2008, the Nation News reported that Doctor Tafari spoke as the Director of the Commission for Pan African Affairs (CPAA) at the May 25th African Liberation Day Rally in Jubilee Gardens. Today’s article in the Nation News says that Tafari had been recently fired from his position as Director, so it seems that he died within a day or so of being fired.

Perhaps the sudden change in his life weighed heavily upon his heart, or maybe it had nothing to do with his death – details of which are unknown at the time of this writing.

Our thoughts, prayers and condolences go out to his family.

Some of our readers left their respects, which we reprint here…

Rumplestilskin
May 31, 2008 at 9:39 am
His soul has moved on to further existence.

May his journey be good.

Justice
May 31, 2008 at 2:07 pm
May he rest in peace. He was faithful to his beliefs.

Margaret Knight
May 31, 2008 at 3:34 pm
Sincere condolences to the Hutchinson and Hynam families.

92 Comments

Filed under Africa, Barbados, Culture & Race Issues, Ghana, History, Immigration, Jamaica, Nigeria, Race, Religion, Slavery

Ghana International Airlines Contacts Barbados Free Press

Ghana International Airlines Disputes Comments By BFP Reader

We received the following email today from Ghana International Airlines about reader comments left on one of our articles.

That is the great thing about blogs – people who are impacted by the information on the blog can immediately have their point of view published in the same venue and read by the same audience. That is impossible with a dead-tree newspaper or television.

Now that the senior management of Ghana International Airlines is communicating with Barbados Free Press and Bajans here in public, perhaps our readers will have a few questions for them about what happened… 😉

Let’s carefully read what GIA has to say, and then ask some polite questions in our comments sections.

Take it away, Ghana International Airlines…

Dear Sirs,

I write in rebuttal to the allegations raised by “Concerned Citizen” at…

https://barbadosfreepress.wordpress.com/2008/05/21/stranded-africans-were-promised-caribbean-jobs-at-us-ten-dollars-an-hour/#comment-245289

As the only “senior manager” from Ghana International Airlines who accompanied the charter flight to Barbados on 31 January 2008, it unfortunately appears that these allegations are directed at myself. While I can only speculate as to the sources and motives behind them, I can however correct and clarify factual discrepancies raised.

a) Neither myself nor, to my knowledge, any other employee of Ghana International Airlines was part of any alleged conspiracy to “funnel Africans” to the USA or Canada.

b) I have never been arrested in nor deported from the USA on the grounds of “involvement in people smuggling scams”.

c) I have never been investigated by police in the United Kingdom due to any association with “convicted pedophiles and fraudsters”.

d) The only cash payment made to a “local airport employee” while on the ground in Barbados was US$3429 paid to an employee of Seawell Air Services for landing and ground handling fees. Additional disbursement of US$1336.02 was made via credit card to Remac Tours Ltd. to account for hotel accommodation and ground transportation provided for the pilots. These are all documented disbursements for which receipts were issued and can be verified by contacting Messrs. Philip Corbin or Reynold MacLean at Seawell / Remac respectively.

e) No illicit arrangements were made to “secure the escape” of the aircraft. All paperwork was appropriately filed and clearances granted by the relevant authorities.

f) Ghana Police has been conducting a detailed investigation into the events surrounding the charter flight. Myself and other officials of the airline have been questioned, and have provided statements to assist in the police investigation. It is my understanding that multiple arrests have been made and charges filed against alleged offenders. It is not accurate to imply that the matter is not being treated seriously by the authorities in Ghana.

Kindly clarify or remove the above referenced comments at your earliest convenience. If you have further questions regarding the incident, please feel free to contact me at the details below.

Yours sincerely,
Sean Mendis

SEAN C. MENDIS
Special Asst. to the C.E.O.
Ghana International Airlines Limited
Accra Office : +233-21-213555
Accra Fax : +233-21-767744
Accra Mobile : (removed by BFP)
Europe Mobile : (removed by BFP)
Email : (removed by BFP)

16 Comments

Filed under Africa, Aviation, Barbados Tourism, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ghana, Immigration, Nigeria, Traveling and Tourism

Stranded Africans Were Promised Caribbean Jobs At US$ Ten Dollars An Hour

Fraud Charges Launched In Ghana

Victims of the fraud that saw Ghana International Airways dump a plane load of Africans in Barbados will testify against one of the African-based organisers. From news accounts, it appears that Frank Emmanuel Duncan was not one of the organisers of the charter flight, but sub-contracted for some 43 seats which he sold to victims by promising them 20 days hotel accommodations in Trinidad and jobs at US$10 per hour.

In our opinion, the Barbados politicians and civil servants who allowed this to happen should be held to account as much as the crooks who organised the flight.

Any person with even a modicum of intelligence knew or should have known what that flight was all about.

But remember… there is no accountability for anything in Barbados. It starts with the Ministers of Government and works its way down from the top.

Don’t expect any real investigation or charges for the Barbados end of the fraud.

From Modern Ghana.com…

Frank Emmanuel Duncan, a social worker who is accused of organizing a trip for some Ghanaians to Barbados but got them stranded during the journey on Tuesday appeared before an Accra Circuit Court.
Duncan, whose plea was not taken is being held for defrauding by false pretences and issuing false cheque with face value of GH¢ 3,000.

Duncan is said to have collected from Mr Gideon Ansah Boateng, the complainant, 2,000 dollars and his VW saloon car with the promise he would take him to Trinidad and Tobago, secure a 20-day hotel accommodation, a job which would earn him 10 dollars per hour…

… continue reading this article at Modern Ghana.com here

Our thanks to one of our regulars for bringing this article to our attention!

14 Comments

Filed under Africa, Barbados, Crime & Law, Ghana, Immigration, Nigeria

Stranded Africans Head Home From Barbados – Will There Be Any Accountability?

Details are scarce, but most of the Africans remaining on Barbados since their Ghana International Airways charter failed to return in February are on their way back home.

So far the government has not revealed exactly how many were on the return flight, how many remain hiding on Barbados or how much the whole debacle will cost Barbados taxpayers.

Still silent are Ikael Tafari and the Pan African Commission whose agenda was probably set back twenty years when Bajans came face to face with the reality of closer and direct ties with Africa.

CBC have a little article up in anticipation but we didn’t catch anything yet on the tely or radio. We’ll update the news when we can.

As we’ve said time and time again, Barbados seems to lack whatever it takes to hold people accountable for wrongdoing. We see lots of shouting and fingerpointing by government and opposition for all kinds of misbehaviour, but seldom do we see charges and accountability before the courts.

Our prediction: this will be no different.

Further Reading

CBC: Stranded Africans Return Home

BFP: The Great African Tourist Scam Of 2008 – Ghana International Airlines Knew They Weren’t Returning To Barbados!

26 Comments

Filed under Africa, Aviation, Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ghana, Immigration, Nigeria

Stranded Ghana Detainees: BBC Reports Barbados Military Rooms Have Insects On Beds

UPDATE: Barbados Underground Blog reports that an aircraft is on its way and at least one person is in custody in Ghana over the original charter.

The Pan African Commission is apparently involved in enmeshing the government in an operation that they knew was suspicious.

For details check out Barbados Underground link here

Government’s Continuing Inability To Resolve This Situation Is Giving Barbados A Black Eye

BBC is now reporting that the stranded Africans being detained at a Barbados Military facility are complaining that the rooms have “insects” and they have had to remove the bedsheets. The article is unclear as to the nature of the “insects” but the reference to removing sheets gives the impression that bedbugs are involved.

This is the latest installment in the seemingly never-ending story of the plight of a planeload of Africans who arrived on Barbados on February 1, 2008 and were stranded when their Ghana International Airways charter failed to show up for the return flight on February 15th.

Interestingly enough, when the passengers were first stranded, the Barbados newspapers FAILED TO REPORT THE NEWS until Barbados Free Press and other blogs did so first. One has to wonder when the Barbados media and politicians are going to wake up and realise that this censoring of the news is no longer a viable strategy.

The one thing I guarantee that you will not see printed in the Barbados oldstream news media are any stories questioning the role that Ikael Tafari and the Pan African Commission played in creating this disaster for Barbados. Tafari was happy enough to float his way to a press conference when the flight first arrived and he and his cohorts were happy to take much credit at the time, but since then Doctor Tafari has been strangely silent on the issue.

Last week the African online press first reported that one of the Ghanaian female detainees was sexually assaulted while in custody of the Barbados military. Barbados Free Press linked to that story and received criticism from some readers for doing so. Instead of demanding an explanation from the military or government about how a woman who is in custody could have been sexually assaulted, the readers chided BFP for not covering-up the story.

To those readers we say: sorry… you must have confused us with the Nation News, Barbados Advocate or the CBC.

The international media is beginning to follow the tale of stranded Africans as it drags on and folks around the world are no doubt wondering about the competency of the Barbados government officials who set up this disaster in the first place, as well as the current government’s inability to deal with what should have been a minor incident.

No doubt there will be new human interest stories about this situation appearing in the international media, and no doubt we will have additional guests arriving as it becomes clear to the world that if you can make it to Barbados the government hasn’t got what it takes to send you back.

Further Reading

BBC News: Africans Stranded In Caribbean

36 Comments

Filed under Africa, Aviation, Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Ghana, Human Rights, Immigration, Military, News Media, Nigeria, Traveling and Tourism

Ghanaian Woman Detainee Sexually Assaulted While In Custody At Barbados Army Base

We Cannot Find Any Record Of This Story In The Oldstream Barbados Media

One of the Ghanaian women stranded in Barbados when the Ghana International Airways charter failed to return to the island was sexually assaulted while in the custody of the Barbados Defense Forces – according to a letter purportedly released by Barbados politician David Comissiong.

The April 15, 2008 letter which is reprinted in its entirety at the end of this article, states that the Royal Barbados Police Force is investigating.

Comissiong States Detainees Were Told They Would Be Shot If They Attempted To Leave The Base

The letter also states that the African detainees were told they would be subject to sniper gun fire if they tried to leave the Barbados Defense Force base where they are being held.

Our Take: Government Is Entirely Responsible For The Well Being Of Persons In Custody

When our police, immigration officers or military personnel take persons into custody, they and their organisation become entirely responsible for their care and well being. This is a duty that has long be recognised in courts in the UK, USA, Canada and around the world.

What if the woman was your sister, your wife, your mother who was locked in a barracks with dozens of unknown men whose only connection was they happened to be on the same flight?

If we missed the coverage of this story in the Barbados news media, please let us know – but for now it looks like no one else has reported that one of the female detainees was sexually assaulted while in government custody.

As to the allegation that detainees were told that they would be shot if they attempted to leave the military base, again we can find no record of this being reported in the Barbados media.

These two issues would seem to be an important part of the Ghana International Airways charter flight disaster. Barbadians should be asking themselves “What else hasn’t the Barbados media been reporting?”

Full text of the April 15, 2008 David Comissiong letter as published on BN Village (link here)…

GLOBAL AFRIKAN CONGRESS
BARBADOS CHAPTER

Israel Lovell Foundation
Tel. (246) 437-3113
My Lord’s Hill Fax: (246) 437-8216ST MICHAEL
E-Mail:cpmbarbados2@yahoo.com

15 April 2008
URGENT REPORT ON AFRICANS INCARCERATED IN BARBADOS

It is my duty to report that on Tuesday 8th April 2008, the Government of Barbados commenced a “crackdown” on 96 citizens of Ghana and Nigeria who have been stranded in Barbados since their charter flight failed to return for them on the 15th of February 2008. Continue reading

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Filed under Africa, Aviation, Barbados, Barbados Tourism, Crime & Law, Culture & Race Issues, Ghana, Human Rights, Immigration, Military, Nigeria, Police, Traveling and Tourism