Tag Archives: Barbados Vote Buying

Who was charged for photographing their ballot? Who paid them: DLP or BLP?

Barbados Election Corruption

File under “Disappearing news stories in Barbados”

by passin thru

Early afternoon on February 21, 2013 – Election Day – the news media in Barbados was full of stories of vote buying triggered by the arrest of a voter for using a cell phone to photograph their marked ballot. The Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation called their original story “Arrested for photographing ballot” but that’s the last we heard of the arrest from the news media.

We see all sorts of news stories and editorials criticising the concept of vote buying, but no specifics with names and details of the event. It looks like the powers that be are allowing general stories about the practice but no specific proof can be shown the public. That’s because it is bad for business if the party that bought the vote is revealed. What if it’s the guvment? Woaloss!

You can still see the original CBC news because Barbados Free Press copied it into their own story Cash for votes scandal in Barbados election: BLP, DLP… or both? Good move, BFP!

Voters take photos of their ballot so they can prove how they marked their “X” to the person who is paying them for voting a certain way. It’s a crime because it totally destroys democracy. Some of the election contests are so close that only a few votes purchased can make the difference. This time around one of our Members of Parliament was elected by a mere 10 votes over the rival. A few more close contests like that and a few more votes bought and the BLP would be forming the government now… or maybe the votes were bought and the DLP bought more?

You see how destructive it all is?

Vote buying is destructive not only because it corruptly changes the results of democratic elections, but because it undermines public confidence in the democratic system, in our government and ultimately in our country.

We know one thing: a voter was arrested – but we were never told their name!

Will this be another one of those disappearing news stories that Barbados is so famous for? Patriotic Bajans of all political colours cannot, must not, let this happen!

Who was charged for photographing their ballot? What is their name?

When do they appear in court?

When can Bajans hear the evidence against them?

This is much too important for Bajans to let the news and the political parties let this story fade away. We can’t depend upon the news media or the political class.

Bajans should demand to know the truth.

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, News Media, Political Corruption, Politics & Corruption

Barbados Prime Minister and Attorney General confirm vote buying during 2013 election

Adriel Brathwaite Barbados

“Attorney General Adriel Dermont Brathwaite said it was distressing that some Barbadians were selling their votes.”

Two Political Parties have the money to buy votes

Newly-sworn-in Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite confirmed Friday to the news media that “some” Bajans sold their votes during the recent general election.

A different way of putting it would be that “some” political parties bribed voters with cash – for it is surely true that unless there were ready buyers, there wouldn’t be any sellers of votes.

So let’s cut the B.S. by our Attorney General and tell it like it is: members of the political class bought the votes of willing sellers during the February 21, 2013 election.

Prime Minister Freundel Stuart also said he was concerned about reports (as in more than one) about people buying votes. The CBC said about PM Stuart: “…throughout the day he has heard stories of people exchanging money for votes. The Prime Minister said this is an ugly practice which digs at the roots of democratic structures.”

The first question of many is…

Who sold? Who bought? Who are the ‘Some’ mentioned by the Attorney General?

Missing in all the news and commentary about vote buying is the name of the person arrested Thursday for photographing their marked ballot in the voting booth. BFP covered the election day story as Cash for votes scandal in Barbados election: BLP, DLP… or both? but no details have appeared in the oldstream news media since then. Strange… or maybe not so strange.

What constituency did this arrest happen in? Did the arrested voter mark their ballot for a DLP or BLP candidate? How many other instances of vote buying/selling is Attorney General Brathwaite aware of? After all… he spoke in the plural. Continue reading

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