The Democratic Labour Party (DLP) after just over two years of forming the Government, is faced with corruption charges. This follows the recent termination of Mrs. Marilyn Rice-Bowen, the former Chairman of the National Housing Corporation.
In a Media released on Wednesday afternoon (August 11th, 2010) by Mr. Dale Marshall, Q.C., M.P., - Deputy Leader of the Opposition. The BLP is supporting Mrs. Rice-Bowen and have formulated questions which could bring the Government to its knees.
In the press release posted on the BLP's website, Mr. Marshall questioned more unanswered insurance questions.
Mr. Marshall's Statement
"Furthermore, what the counter attack on Mrs. Rice-Bowen has laid bare is the circumstances under which a number of insurance policies for statutory corporations have been re-assigned since this Government took office. The can is now open and the worms are leaping out".
"What the public needs now is full disclosure of the facts that led to the insurance for the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation being moved from ICBL to CLICO. We all know that the chairman of CBC, Leroy Parris was the chairman of CLICO Holdings at the time".
"We also wish the details on the change of insurance cover for Barbados Conference Services Ltd. Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre, from ICBL to Trident Insurance in circumstances where the chairman of BCSL, Algernon Leacock is also the CEO and a substantial shareholder in Trident Insurance.
"What led the board of the Gymnasium Limited to terminate its contract with CGI Insurance to have IMPS Insurance Brokers, with family connections at the highest level of Government source new coverage, leading to an increased outlay of 25 per cent fir the gymnasium?"
"Similarly, why did ICBL lose the insurance business for the airport and seaport?"
"These are matters that the Cabinet must address without delay. We will await their findings and their action"
The Ironic Twist
what is interesting here is the fact that the DLP party won the general election of 2008 by declaring the levels of corruption which existed in the BLP party, yet evidence of corruption is being displayed as existing in the DLP camp.
Allegations of Corruption by David Thompson.
On the Democratic Labour Party website under the heading Putting Barbados Back On Track, Mr. Thompson made the following statement against the then Prime Minister Owen Arthur, and his BLP Government.
"The next general elections in Barbados will be the first elections in the history of Barbados in which the finger of corruption can reasonably and correctly be pointed at senior members of an incumbent administration.
The Prime Minister (Mr. Owen Arthur) makes it a point to say to the nation at every turn how I made my money as a lawyer and the clients for whom I work.
I want him now to tell the nation how he amassed his fortunes on a lowly Prime Ministerial salary.
We all knew he was stone broke in 1994. He said he could not make ends meet and was leaving politics. Today, analysts place him in the top ten in Barbados!
I want him to explain how his ministers made their fortunes on ministerial salaries lower than those of middle level wage earners in the private sector.
Owen Arthur is constantly pointing fingers at persons in this party (DLP). I want Owen Arthur to subject himself and his ministers to an independent financial audit. I challenge them today to declare their assets of 1994 and their assets of 2007 and let the public determine if what they smell in Barbados today is fish offal from the Bridgetown Market".
DLP 2008 Manifesto
The DLP in its 2008 manifesto under the subheading Good Governance states, At the moment too many Barbadians perceive voting as a waste of time since many Parliamentarians have made promises during the election campaigns, which they have not delivered. Therefore they promised good governance should be transparent in all its decision-making, and they would publish details of agreements and contracts involving the government and its agencies.
With the above statement, how many Barbadians knew that the business dealings of many public entities were being switched to accommodate the friends and families of the Government? Where is the transparency in these matters? Will ministers involved be forced to resign, and face any charges? How could the an Opposition with its ears to the ground not know these things were taking place? Is there a pact between the two parties that they could gather all they can will in government while the other only blow hot air?
Will the next general election in Barbados see its lowest level of voter turnout because of the level of corruption which seems to be on both sides of the political fence?