A New Beginning With Mia Mottley: A Chance For Barbados – By Fmr. NAB Chairman, Henderson Bovell
It perhaps would have caused some to think of Charles Dickens (1859) novel – A Tale of Two Cities, which depicts the plight of the French peasantry demoralized by the French Aristocracy
in the years leading up to the revolution. After all, the DLP (which does not know what it is doing or what to do) has also demoralized ordinary Barbadians as a result of its dangerous mismanagement of the Barbados economy and more direct – because of its high cost of living, burdensome taxes and its discriminatory family first and fatted calf doctrine.
On one hand you had David Thompson, acting in the interest of the DLP and with a serious fiscal crisis on the current account which was manufactured by his party – reshuffling his politically incompetent Cabinet for the 4th time in less than 3 years and hoping on this occasion for a different result while on the other hand – you had a compassionate Leader of the Opposition – acting in the national interest – taking fresh guard and outlining her vision and advancing a new politics and a new development path for the country. ‘A Tale of Two Cities,’ you ask?
Think about it! In the recent Nation Newspaper/Wickham Poll, Barbadians were concerned about the high Cost of living, Unemployment, the Economy and Crime. Reshuffling the same Cabinet 3 times before, did not help and doing so now (for a 4th time) certainly will not either. How will the recent reshuffle address the peoples’ concerns? Wasn’t Stuart Attorney General from day one (1)?
The fundamental principle remains: “…the DLP does not know what to do or what it is doing.” That the DLP spent 14 years in Opposition but could not come up with sensible policies – wouldn’t it now be wishful thinking to expect that they could somehow come up with relevant policies in a few months, given that urgent action is needed now?
But it is clear that the DLP has two doctrines: ‘wait and see’ and: “do nothing and things will get better!” Meanwhile and by stealth, it has been implementing the recommendations of the last IMF Article 1V Consultation. It raised water rates by 60%, refused to adjust the land tax bands or rates, increased the price of fuel, and is now talking about a wage freeze and an increase in VAT.
In contrast, what Miss Mottley has been talking about is so people-centered and revolutionary that a Senior Editor of the Financial Times of London (of the world’s leading business news organisations – recognised internationally for its authority, integrity and accuracy) predicts that her address to the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, recently: “will be seen over time as one of the more important post-independence speeches to be made by any political leader.”
At a time when the DLP is more interested in power and access to the fatted calf – even though its political incompetence is recognised by even die-hard dems, “Mottley has raised an issue for public debate that should now dominate political discourse for sometime. It is a real answer to the economic mess we are in.” That is, if the BLP and the country are ready for “SERIOUS” politics and SERIOUS conversations.