Tag Archives: Integrity Legislation

G2G Policy

BFP_Piggy125.jpg

Our old friend Afra Raymond explores the dangers of Government-to-Government arrangements. Once again, those politician piggies at the trough will do anything they can to sideline the tendering process and turn public funds into personal profits.

How many Barbados politicians have foreign bank accounts in Canada, the USA, Switzerland or some private bank somewhere? We don’t know because Barbados has no integrity legislation and no requirement to disclose assets, and no conflict of interest rules.

Take it away, Afra…

AfraRaymond.net

The current Government to Government (G2G) arrangements are a direct threat to our country’s fundamental interests.

The key element of the G2G arrangement is that a larger, more advanced, country will assist a smaller, less-advanced country by building or operating complex facilities which are beyond the reach of the smaller state.

One of the features the G2G arrangements have in common with the other large-scale projects is the high degree of secrecy with which the proposals are developed.  That secrecy raises doubts as to whether proper Needs Assessments are undertaken and as to the degree to which the views of citizens and stakeholders are sought, far less considered.  The fundamental issue as to the necessity for these projects is thus routinely sidelined, which is inimical to the public interest.

The main criticisms of the G2G arrangements are –

  • Sidelining of the elementary Tendering Process – the procurement process is effectively…

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Afra Raymond: The threat from Trinidad & Tobago’s Appeal Court

trinidad integrity law

Politicians everywhere love those state-controlled enterprises that are exempt from the rules applying to wholly owned state-enterprises. Why, you ask? It’s all about politicos being able to profit from your tax dollars while hiding the profits.

It’s been a constant battle trying to craft integrity laws because the moment a country puts them in place the politicians discover a hundred ways they are exempt.

In Barbados, of course, we don’t bother with Integrity Legislation because we’re happy that the politicians and government employees are able to steal. With about 60 % of the islands workforce somehow employed by the government it all works out. Well, everything works out except the mathematics of keeping the whole thing afloat.

Our old friend Afra Raymond has a problem with the Trinidad & Tobago Appeal Court ruling that undermines Integrity Legislation.

We only wish we had the same problem in Barbados. For in Barbados, we have no integrity or conflicts of interest laws at all!

Take it away, Afra…

afra raymond

Integrity threat from the Appeal Court

by Afra Raymond

On 27th June the Appeal Court ruled that –

  • TSTT is not a State Enterprise. The members of its Board are not subject to the Integrity Provisions.
  • It is only the members of the Boards of those Statutory Bodies which exercise public functions that are subject to the jurisdiction of the (Integrity) Commission.

Telecommunications Company of Trinidad & Tobago (TSTT) is a company established between the T&T State and the British-based multinational, Cable & Wireless. C&W holds 49% of the shares in TSTT, while the State holds about 42% of the shares together with the right to nominate 5 of its 9 Directors.

That unanimous ruling has serious consequences for the viability of our nation’s integrity framework.

The intended purpose of that framework is to ensure a satisfactory level of transparency and accountability in the way Public Money is transacted and Public Functions are discharged.  There is still a strong case for this Integrity Framework as a necessary ingredient in the Good Governance of our nation. The Integrity Framework includes the Auditor General; the Integrity Commission; the Investments Division of the Ministry of Finance and the two Parliamentary Accounts Enterprises Committees.  Ours is the most vibrant Caribbean economy and the State is clearly the largest player, so the proper management of that sector is critical. Given the continuing rise in the waste and theft of Public Money, there will always be a need for an improved, more effective Integrity Framework to oversee these huge, controversial operations…

…continue reading this article at AfraRaymond.com

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Filed under Barbados, Consumer Issues, Corruption, Ethics, Political Corruption, Trinidad and Tobago

Barbados DLP Executive involved in political influence loan scandal

Reynold Austin Barbados DLP

Photo: Reynold Austin – President DLP (Canada)

Noted Jamaican-Canadian businessman says DLP Executive Reynold Austin obtained US$750,000 business loan on the basis of political assurances

It doesn’t much matter whether we’re talking a corrupt BLP government or a corrupt DLP government – it’s the “Same old, same old ’bout this place”. Once elected, party officials rush to turn political influence and government authority into personal profits.

Today’s scandal involving a DLP executive member is only today’s scandal. CLICO was yesterday’s scandal. Tomorrow there will be something new, and when the BLP forms the government after the next election there will be more scandals coming – only BLP in their flavour instead of DLP.

“It is a scandal that the DLP executive Reynold Austin marketed his land development project on the basis of his position with the ruling DLP Government…”

Without Integrity Legislation, Freedom of Information and accountability laws, the buying and selling of political influence and government authority will continue to carry no penalty.

denham jolly Jamaica Canada

Photo: Jamaican-Canadian businessman Denham Jolly

Look how brazen these people are!

In this case, noted Jamaican-Canadian businessman Denham Jolly was happy to make a loan in 2011 to a Barbados development project pushed by the President of the Barbados DLP (Canada), Reynold Austin, upon assurances that the project was important to the Democratic Labour Party government.

In other words, the DLP (Canada) executive tied the success of the business project directly to his insider status with the governing party. Jolly was happy with that. Only when the property development was unable to make loan payments did Mr. Jolly complain.

“Denham Jolly should also apologize to Bajans for taking part in an act of political corruption.”

Jolly told the press that DLP executive Reynold Austin “approached me in the spring of 2011 for a business loan for Pickering Court Development. He assured me that it was a great investment because it was a centrepiece for the Government and the enhancement of their re-election.”

Why should a privately-owned property development be a “great investment” because it is a “centrepiece for the Government” and “the enhancement of their re-election”?

How does a privately-owned piece of property increase in value due to an association with government?

That’s an easy question for any Bajan because we’ve seen decades of worthless scrub and agricultural land turned into millions when a government bestows building permissions upon land owned by political friends.

It is a scandal that the DLP executive Reynold Austin marketed his land development project on the basis of his position with the ruling DLP Government, and the stated value of the land to the government and therefore ‘enhanced’ value of the loan-provider to the Government and the Government’s re-election.

Reynold Austin should immediately resign from his executive position with the DLP, and if he does not the DLP should relieve him of his position. Continue reading

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In the Caribbean, budget time is corruption time!

“Expenditure of Public money – minus Accountability – minus Transparency = equals CORRUPTION”

Property Matters – State Enterprise Accounts

by Afra Raymond

In the next few weeks, this column will cover some of the issues which are likely to have a bearing on the 2012 Trinidad and Tobago Budget. The same issues apply to Barbados – especially considering the country’s lack of Integrity legislation, conflicts of interest rules, accountability mechanisms and Freedom of Information laws. Without these basic foundations, Barbados politicians, government officials and managers of state-owned enterprises can only pretend to be accountable to citizens: and pretend they do!

In my view the State and its Agencies must perform in an exemplary fashion if we are to progress.  A good example is worth a thousand words. Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Freedom Of Information, Trinidad and Tobago

A Barbados politician arrived in Heaven…

UPDATED: July 22, 2012

In honour of the Jersey politicians about to visit Barbados to consult with and take advice from Bajan politicians (Yeah. No kidding!), Barbados Free Press revisits this wonderful tale of a Bajan politician choosing between Heaven and Hell…

Original story first published August 30, 2011…

‘Integrity Legislation? That’s a good one!’ laughs the devil as he slaps his knee and pours the drinks…

While staggering down the side of the road one afternoon near Grape Hall, a well known Member of Parliament is tragically hit by a garbage truck and dies.

After a short stop in Bridgetown to pick up a cheap bottle of E.S.A.F. rum, his soul arrives in heaven and is met by St. Peter at the entrance.

‘Welcome to heaven,’ says St. Peter. ‘Before you settle in, it seems there is a problem. We seldom see a BLP or DLP politician around these parts, you see, so we’re not sure what to do with you.’ Continue reading

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News Item: Turks and Caicos Integrity Commission collects asset declarations from senior judges

As the newly appointed head of the Turks and Caicos Integrity Commission, SIR David Anthony Cathcart Simmons recently ordered that members of the advisory council and consultative forum must now declare their income, assets and liabilities along with all other senior public servants including senior judges. See: Sir David Simmons declares Turks & Caicos public servants must declare assets – but not him!

Thanks to BFP reader “Not Me!” for the comic. It looks like Shona and Clive have some competition!

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Shameful but Legal: Corruption by Barbados Coastal Zone Management Unit Director Leo Brewster

UPDATED October 22, 2011 

(Pinned to top. Scroll down for newer content)

Populace learns another lesson about the Protected Class…

You have to love this country, folks. Dr Leo Brewster gets a job running a government agency, the CZMU. As part of the job, he hands out millions of dollars of contracts to others. Then he and a fellow government employee start a company and Brewster awards hundreds of thousands of dollars in ‘work’ to his own company. Not satisfied with this, he has the government purchase equipment for his company to use. The equipment cannot be found in government inventory.

Nothing like having the government equip your business – keeps those start-up costs down. Slick!

This goes on for almost four years during which time Brewster’s company also collects VAT and fails to remit the tax to government. Yup, they collected the tax from the government agency and failed to remit back to government. So it wasn’t just a loss of collected tax revenues, it was an actual theft OF government funds.

That’s really slick!

Here we are a year and a half later and just like we predicted at the time, it all faded away. Dr. Brewster is still Director at CMZU. Nothing changed.

Perhaps there was something in the news that we missed – perhaps not – but does it really matter?

The lesson is again taught to the populace: Government job = money on the side with no worries. Even if you get caught.

Original story first published February 19, 2010…

Leo Brewster awarded government contracts to own company!

Dr. Leo Brewster shouldn’t get too upset about the current allegations that he directed hundreds of thousands of dollars of government contracts to his own company.

Heck, that’s standard operating procedure in Barbados and it’s not against the law because neither the former BLP government nor the current DLP government want to outlaw this common practice by elected and appointed government officials. They don’t want to kill that golden goose just yet, ya know! (Not until we get closer to the next election. Gotta get that last bit ‘o juice before the game changes.)

If Brewster had been a little wiser he would have put the company in his sister’s name or something like other government officials do, but except for the embarrassment of being caught with his hand in the cookie jar he need not fear any charges. Oh, there might be an issue with the VAT his company collected and didn’t pay, but even that will be excused away as a cashflow problem. Hell, they just forgave $20 million in taxes to the Barbados Turf Club so why should good old Leo be treated differently than the rich pony owners? Continue reading

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Barbados Government Official issues $400,000 in contracts to own company – but it’s legal thanks to Prime Minister Thompson

Smart Money predicts “No Charges” against Barbados Government Official

The Nation’s gossip writer at “Flying Fish & Cou Cou” is all excited and reports that a Barbados Government official has been caught out issuing government contracts to his own company without tender. The Nation writer is predicting that the government official will end up in court and wonders why a suspension hasn’t already been issued.

Let me say this about that…

1/ Barbados has a long tradition of elected and appointed Government officials issuing government contracts without tender to companies they have an interest in. Whether the company is actually in the name of the official or “owned and run” by their spouse or lover doesn’t matter. It’s all the same.

2/ This corrupt practice was SOP – standard operating procedure under the Owen Arthur / Mia Mottley BLP government.

3/ When in government the BLP had enough sense to toss a few “no tender” contracts to businesses run by DLP members. Now the DLP government can’t prosecute any BLP members because the DLP took part in ripping off the public too.

4/ During the 2007 election campaign, Thompson and the DLP promised to introduce conflict of interest standards that would prohibit elected and appointed Government Officials from issuing government contracts to companies they owned themselves. Thompson promised in writing to implement this Ministerial Code standard “immediately” upon forming a government. This was not the promised ITAL integrity legislation – this was a Ministerial Code to simply be declared as policy on day one as Thompson promised.

5/ Thompson lied about introducing a Ministerial Code and did not do so. Barbados has no policy or integrity legislation that prevents Government officials from issuing government contracts to themselves. As a result the Thompson government is unable to prosecute the government official involved in the current Flying Fish & Cou Cou story.

6/ The Barbados news media will probably not print the name of the government official involved in the current scandal because the official did nothing wrong in law and they fear being sued. (Consider our past article Cowardly pee-in-pants Barbados Nation Newspaper hides name of corrupt Government Minister)

Welcome to Barbados, folks! When we elected Thompson and the DLP two years ago we thought the corruption would be cleaned up. We thought that Thompson was different and he would implement the promised integrity standards that no Barbados politicians have ever wanted to implement.

What suckers we were.

Here is the Nation article in full because the Barbados news media (including the Nation) have long shown that they will remove past articles to change history anytime it suits them…

FLYING FISH & COU COU: Caught in the act

Published on: 2/6/2010.

A PROBE into a certain department has unearthed such damning evidence that a well-known civil worker could find himself standing before a magistrate, or judge.

Cou Cou has received confirmation that the individual, who has certain responsibilities, out-sourced certain contractual works without going through any tendering process.

The varied tasks amounted to almost $400 000. But that is not the greatest howler.

Word is that the official outsourced the works to himself. Yes, to himself!

He apparently formed a company and gave himself the work, ignoring every financial rule of Government.

But the questions which need to be answered are: Why is he not on suspension?

And when will he appear on the court pages?

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When there is a lack of will to punish wrongdoers, the world pays attention

UPDATED: June 10, 2010

Friends, we’d like to mention once again that we are well into the third year of DLP Government and not a single person has been charged with any corruption-based crime. Therefore, it’s not going to happen.

We told you that the two major parties had an agreement in place. We were correct.

Here’s an article from last year that might make you think about the song and dance you’ve been accepting from the DLP…

barbados-3a-piggies

For almost two years now, David Thompson and his DLP comrades have been declaring that they will hold people “accountable” for wrong-doing.

The list of wrongdoings is long, and for the mostpart the main culprits are known. When we think of Hardwood Holdings, the Barbados Tourism Authority, Hotels and Resorts, Dodds prison, the dozens of major contracts let without tender and – most infamously – former Prime Minister Owen Arthur depositing into his personal bank account a (cough, cough) “campaign cheque” that was “accidentally” made out to him personally… Well, just how many instances of wrongdoing and law breaking do you want?

But as Barbadians have come to realise, not a single person will be charged by the government of Prime Minister David Thompson.

Not a single lawsuit will be launched to recover public monies that ended up in the accounts of members of the former BLP government and their supporters. Continue reading

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Barbados Free Press Posts Article Three Thousand (#3000)

Welcome to BFP’s 3,000th Article!

Barbados Free Press StatsBarbados Free Press published our first article on January 17, 2006, and right away we let the world know where we stood on Integrity, Transparency and Accountability of elected and appointed public officials in Barbados.

In that article, Prime Minister Owen Arthur Opens a New Can of Paint – To Cover Old Corruption, we took the first shot across the bow of a corrupt BLP government led by then-PM Owen Arthur. The article also mentioned the controversy over the flyovers, a company called 3S Structural Steel Solutions LLC, of Maryland USA and said…

The last thing that Barbadians need is a “public relations programme” instead of an open accountability about where every dollar is spent.

Prime Minister Arthur is correct: the cartel must stop misusing their political offices and connections for “personal material gain.” Only time will tell if the Prime Minister is really serious about stopping the corruption, or whether, like a used car salesman, he really means “Give her a new coat of paint and some sucker will buy it.”

We followed up the very next day with an expose, Barbados Tender Process Corrupt? that told how the $120 million dollar flyover project had been awarded without being put out to tender. On our third day, January 19, 2006, we expressed our hopes and doubts about the newly appointed Leader of the Opposition, David Thompson. About David Thompson, BFP said

“…will Mr. Thompson (whom this writer greatly respects) remain true to the principles he so ably espoused earlier that day? Will he be able to ignore the siren call of easy money that has corrupted so many in the current government?”

Barbados Blogs Hounded Prime Minister Arthur & Opposition Leader Thompson On Integrity Legislation For Two Years Leading Up To The 2008 Election

As our long term readers know, Barbados Free Press hounded Prime Minister Arthur and the BLP Government for two more years on integrity and competency issues.

Dragged Kicking & Screaming Towards ITAL

David Thompson & DLP Dragged Kicking & Screaming Towards ITAL

At the same time we urged Mr. Thompson to break his silence on ITAL – Integrity, Transparency and Accountability Legislation – and to declare that if elected his government would implement ITAL forthwith. We chided Thompson and the DLP to introduce Integrity Legislation while in Opposition to shame the government into action, but Thompson and his members remained silent until the last minute.

In the final weeks of the January 2008 election contest and with everything in the balance, David Thompson and the DLP finally came out in favour of ITAL. Although we were skeptical that Thompson’s last minute “cut and paste” declaration taken from an internet website was merely an election ploy, Barbados Free Press declared for the Thompson and the DLP.

After all, Thompson and the Democratic Labour Party promised in writing to implement ITAL within 100 days of forming a government, and to implement a Ministerial Code of Conduct immediately upon forming a government.

The rest of the election, as they say, is history.

Some people, perhaps many, believe that the island blogs were responsible for the DLP’s last minute Integrity Legislation promises and in fact, that without the island blogs and Thompson’s 100 day ITAL promise – the BLP may have succeeded in gaining an unprecedented fourth term.

Lies Before The Election: Denis Lowe & David Thompson Promising Integrity Legislation

Lies Before The Election: Denis Lowe & David Thompson Promising Integrity Legislation

Three and a half years later, Barbados still lacks Integrity, Transparency and Accountability Legislation

So here we are in June, 2009 some three and a half years after Barbados Free Press published our first article (that was viewed by I think seven people on the first day). We are about to welcome our six millionth visitor. Thompson’s “implement a Ministerial Code of Conduct” promise was dead the minute he took office. His “ITAL in 100 days” promise is now overdue by almost a year and a half and anyone with half a brain can see that integrity is the furthest thing from the DLP Government’s concerns.

Most telling, it is still legal for Barbados Government Ministers, and elected and appointed government officials to receive gifts – even money – from companies that do business with the government. It is still legal for elected or appointed government officials to award government contracts to themselves or their immediate family.

The issue of gifts, contracts and conflicts of interest standards could easily be declared as policy by Prime Minister Thompson – as he promised to do immediately upon forming a government. Such a policy declaration does not require legislation or discussion, and it is exactly what David Thompson promised to do IMMEDIATELY upon becoming Prime Minister.

Why didn’t Thompson do as he promised in writing?

Die hard DLP supporters don’t want to face that issue. They are too busy enjoying the spoils of their election victory.

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President & Mrs. Obama Release Income Tax Returns – Will Barbados Politicians Do The Same?

UPDATED: April 17, 2010

ONE YEAR SINCE we published this article about President Obama and his lovely wife releasing their tax returns for public scrutiny. That’s another year passed without the integrity, transparency and accountability laws that David Thompson and his DLP promised to implement “immediately upon taking office” in January of 2008.

Transparency? More like “cover up” especially regarding the CLICO scandal and the Prime Minister’s continuing protection of his old friend Leroy Parris. Some things never change ’bout hey. Now the problem becomes “Who do we vote for in the next election?” because – really – there is only one political party in Barbados.

So how about it Prime Minister Thompson… can we see your income tax filings too?

Here’s our original story published in April of 2009…

obama-tax-returns

Bajans Got Fooled Again When They Believed David Thompson And The DLP

Barbadians were told that the David Thompson government would be “The most transparent, most accountable government Barbados has ever seen…”

Well, we all know what became of that, don’t we? We were promised integrity legislation, freedom of information, and a Ministerial code with conflict of interest rules. Instead, we are still a country without standards of conduct for elected and appointed government officials. It is still legal in Barbados for government officials to award government contracts to companies owned by themselves or their immediate family members.

David Thompson and the DLP government lied to us during their 2007 campaign. Their supporters, who so heavily criticized former Prime Minister Owen Arthur and his government for failing to introduce integrity legislation and conflicts of interest standards, remain silent one year two years and 100 days after David Thompson became Prime Minister of our country.

In the United States though, President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle have released six years of income tax returns.

It’s called Transparency, Accountability and Integrity.

Further Reading

TaxProf Blog: Obama Releases 2000-2006 Tax Returns

Reuters: Obama tax return reveals memoirs made millions

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Filed under Barbados, Barbados Government, Corruption, Ethics, Freedom Of Information, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Thanks To Prime Minister David Thompson, Barbados Government Officials Can Still Use Their Office For Personal Profit

New Wardrobes & New Cars On The Public Purse: This Is DLP Integrity Reform In Barbados

Elected and appointed government officials in Barbados are free to use their office for personal profit because successive governments have deliberately refused to pass laws or policies against the practice. Not only can government officials misuse and use information and influence to personally profit – they can actually issue fat government contracts to companies owned by themselves or their immediate family members!

david-thompson-piggy-smlThe current Democratic Labour Party (DLP) government led by David Thompson promised during the election campaign of 2007 to implement a Ministerial Code of Conduct immediately upon being elected. That was the first integrity promise to fall by the wayside but not the last. Upon election, the DLP priorities immediately switched from integrity and accountability to getting their little piggy snouts right into the public trough. Fine cars and fine clothes became the order of the day. Not to mention borrowing business jets from companies who profit from government contracts!

And what of the promised Integrity, Transparency and Accountability Legislation and Policies?

Well, we did have some public consultations for a Freedom of Information Act proposal that has since disappeared. No public consultations for the Integrity Legislation are planned though – we can’t have citizens spotting the deliberate holes and weaknesses in the legislation beforehand, doan ya know!

David Thompson Failed To Make The One Simple Policy Change That Could Have Stopped Much Of The Abuse

With a simple policy statement Prime Minister Thompson could have sent a message of integrity throughout the government. Without passing any laws or any consultation at all, Mr. Thompson could have declared the following…

“It is now government policy that no government contracts are to be issued to companies or other government suppliers that are owned wholly or in part by an elected or appointed government employee or official or their immediate family members.”

Thompson could have also declared the following policy without too much trouble at all…

“It is now government policy that elected or appointed government employees or officials are prohibited from directly or indirectly receiving any gift, consideration or loan from any government contractor for any reason except that the value of such gift or consideration shall not exceed BDS$50 no more than three times in twelve months.”

That “limits on gifts” policy leaves open the door for some small Christmas or birthday presents between friends but stops thousand dollar “Christmas” presents or the five-thousand dollar “loans” to government officials that are never repaid and are coincidentally given by government suppliers who just received a fat contract.

To those of you who will moan about the difficulty in enforcing such policies, you must remember that many government policies are set. Some are enforced and some are ignored but everyone knows they exist and they do establish standards and limit behaviours just by their existence.

Had Prime Minister Thompson established these two government policies it would have sent a clear message to appointed and elected government officials. The fact that Thompson didn’t set these integrity policies AND that he failed to implement his integrity promises sent another very clear message to everyone…

The feeding trough is open. Nothing changed except the name of the pig – from BLP to DLP.

An Example Of How Senior Government Officials Use Their Office And Inside Knowledge For Personal Profit

For today’s lesson about how corrupt this island of Barbados is, we turn to a September 4, 2005 Nation article that says “senior civil servants” were behind a $200 million dollar hotel development…

$200m resort plans
Published on: 9/4/05.
by JULIE WILSON

AN INTERNATIONAL hotel brand is playing a major part in transforming Harrison Point into a rich and famous paradise, possibly in time for Cricket World Cup 2007.

The SUNDAY SUN has learnt that the 240-acre site, north of the temporary prison will undergo a $200 million transformation in two phases.

Local company Harrison Resort (Barbados) Limited, made up of a number of senior civil servants will construct in the first phase, 160 two-bedroom condominiums, eight ocean-front villas, 100 lakeside townhouses and 75 residential villas…

… continue reading this article at the Nation (link here)

Which “Senior Civil Servants” Are/Were Involved With This Mega-Project?

By virtue of their insider knowledge, connections and their ability to directly and indirectly influence lawmakers, civil servants are well-positioned to profit from their office and government employment. They know which government policy changes are coming. They know which landowners are behind on taxes, which zoning change is in the works and which pieces of land will become more or less valuable as a result. Their civil servant friends have access to other information or are able to put a piece of paper to the top of the pile and so on.

For all those reasons, most modern democracies have established rules and standards limiting the business activities that government employees can engage in after hours.

But no such limits or rules apply in Barbados – where the country is so corrupt that senior civil servants don’t even have to hide their conflicts of interest and the press prints it all like the corruption is some good news story that is evidence of progress and industry.

God, I love Barbados – but I hate the corrupt cartels and elites who have been feeding off the public for so long that citizens believe this is normal and acceptable.

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Barbados Government Gives $19 Million To Rich Racing Horse Owners As It Pleads For International Funds

Government’s Wealthy Friends Benefit From Your Tax Dollars

A few weeks ago, the Barbados Government of Prime Minister Thompson was bragging that the National Housing Corporation had collected over $600,000 in back rents from poor tenants who are behind. Always one to throw a positive spin on any government in power, the Nation Newspaper titled its article $600,000 In The Bag

“In the bag for whom?” the paper should have been asking.

Easy enough… in the bag for rich racehorse owners called the Barbados Turf Club who were just given NINETEEN MILLION of YOUR tax dollars by Prime Minister Thompson so the big boys can continue to have fun with their hobby horses. (see Government Writes Off BTC’s $19 Million Dollar Debt)

Meanwhile in Miami, Prime Minister Thompson spoke at the Conference on the Caribbean and Central America with cup in hand – telling those developed nations that they had better help the poor people of Barbados. Not to mention that his government just cleared the way to borrow another 1.5 BILLION dollars that YOU and your children and their children will pay for.

And by a strange coincidence (cough, cough) some of the benefactors of this $19 million dollar wad of cash are none other than people who gave money to the Democratic Labour Party’s recent election campaign!

How Was The $19 Million Spent By The Barbados Turf Club?

You only thought you were electing a new government. After almost a year in power the DLP Barbados Government is acting exactly like its corrupt predecessors of the Barbados Labour Party.

So let’s have some transparency from Prime Minister David Thompson – who is such a fan of integrity, freedom of information and transparency. Here are some questions, and I’m sure our readers can help with a few more as the citizens of Barbados attempt to discover exactly how our tax dollars were spent by the wealthy race horse owners of the Barbados Turf Club.

Dear Prime Minister Thompson,

In light of the millions upon millions of tax dollars that have been spent by the Barbados Turf Club, please answer the following questions…

1/ Who owns the Barbados Turf Club?

2/ What assets does the BTC have, and what are its liabilities and to whom are the liabilities owed?

3/ Here is a list of the Board of Directors. How much in cash or other benefits has each person received in the last five years?

The following persons are on the Board of Directors of the Barbados Turf Club:

Sir David Seale – President
Mr. Stephen Walcott – Vice President
Mr. Bruce Bayley
Mr. Duane Burke
Mr. Anthony Da Silva
Mrs. Pamela Marshall
Mr. Luther G. Miller III J.P.
Lord Michael Taylor
Sir Denys Williams KCMG GCM

4/ Are any of the Board of Directors or their families or associated corporations amongst the creditors of the Barbados Turf Club who will be or were recipients of any payments from the BTC in the last five years?

5/ Are any politicians of any party, or their family members or associated corporations amongst the creditors of the Barbados Turf Club who will be or were recipients of any payments from the BTC in the last five years?

6/ How much money in “campaign donations” was received by the DLP in the last five years from any of the Barbados Turf Club board members, or their family members or associated corporations?

That will do for a start. Barbados Free Press readers… give ’em HELL…

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Would The DLP Have Won Without Their Integrity Legislation Promise?

Re-visiting the DLP Victory – January 2008

Friends, let’s take another look at the article we published on January 16, 2008 and your comments at the time. By request we are going to leave this article at the top for a few days.

Remember the pride we felt that Barbados would now have the integrity legislation, freedom of information access and conflicts of interest rules so citizens could hold our elected and appointed officials accountable?

Remember the joy?

Here’s what one DLP supporter had to say at the time…

Yardbroom
January 16, 2008 at 9:36 am
This election was won because the people of Barbados had an opportunity, – denied in the recent past – to really see what goes on in Barbadian politics.

The Blogs played a decisive part, and you BFP was as the vanguard, no praise is too high. What BFP did was expose the underbelly of Barbadian politics. There was then a reason, for Integrity Legislation and your “constant position” on the subject meant it had to be addressed. The DLP responded to the wishes of the people, as they had to, and as a result we awake this morning, 16th January 2008 to the change we had all hoped for – at least on this blog.

Sadly, “Yardbroom” and most of the DLP diehards haven’t been seen too much around Barbados Free Press since a few months after the election when they realized that Bajans had been fooled again. Too bad the DLP supporters’ fervor for Integrity Legislation and Accountability disappeared with the DLP’s election victory.

Have a read of what BFP and you the readers had to say back in January 2008. Remember the joy?

Original article as published January 16, 2008…

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Would The DLP Have Promised Integrity Legislation Without Pressure From The Blogs? Continue reading

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Filed under Barbados, Blogging, Crime & Law, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption