Barbados Labour Party leader Mia Mottley, with City candidate Jeffrey Bostic at her side, and other candidates in the background, giving the thumbs up to the party faithful gathered at Weymouth Saturday night. (Picture by Sandy Pitt.)
It’s not rocket science. Opposition Leader Mia Mottley threw down the gauntlet to the Government Saturday night, promising that many social problems the island was now facing would disappear under a Barbados Labour Party (BLP) administration.
And then she gave the estimated more than 10 000 on hand a sneak preview of some of the solutions to be brought to save the country.
Speaking at the Weymouth pasture during the party’s campaign Lift Off, Mottley said the South Coast Sewerage Project problems, a shortage of Transport Board buses and Sanitation Service Authority trucks, and free tertiary education were issues that would be solved immediately should Barbadians vote the Bees back in on May 24 when they go to the polls.
“We will buy the trucks. We will buy the buses. We will fix the South Coast Sewerage Project issues immediately,” Mottley asserted during her hour-long speech.
“They keep asking how we are going to do it. We will show them how to do it,” Mottley said to loud applause from the partisan crowd.
Minutes afterwards, the party leader promised that, should the BLP regain the Government, from June 1 non-contributory pensions would be increased.
“The days of pensioners getting $77.50 will be no more. From June 1 pensioners will get $225 every two weeks,” she said to even louder applause.
Public servants also left the venue smiling after Mottley promised a BLP government would immediately sit down with the National Union of Public Workers to negotiate a salary deal, and should it not be concluded, a cost of living allowance would be introduced.
Mottley said it hurt her to the core that transportation issues were leaving old people and schoolchildren stranded at bus stops. “How under this Government is it so hard to purchase 40 trucks?” she asked.
With her 29 colleagues sitting in a show of unity behind her on a large stage, Mottley said her team had the innovation and ingenuity to come up with solutions to simple economic problems the current Democratic Labour Party administration could not solve.
She said the country still faced a direct date with destiny when a foreign debt of BDS$120 million would be due, but she was confident a BLP administration could get the country’s economy back on track.
The BLP leader said she was embarrassed that a Google search of Barbados could be headlined with the negative news about sewage flowing in the streets.
Earlier, Mottley arrived at the venue around 9 p.m. in a scene befitting a rock star, with stilt walkers, flute players and tukband drummers escorting her to the stage.
“We have a high mountain to climb. We are up to the task,” Mottley concluded. (BA)