“Welcome to a different place”

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For many years most people who came to Barbados had an expectation that they were coming to an island – most easterly in the region – which served as a lighthouse with a beacon that shone brightly for all to see. From 2008, however, that certainty, that expectation, like the beacon, has gradually been dimmed to the extent that there remains only a flicker.

And recently there galloped forth from a valley of folly two intrepid horsemen who have been “leaders” over the last decade – two who have led us across the vale of economic pain and into the ravine of crumbling infrastructure.

Some weeks ago, Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler, in speaking about BLP leader Mia Mottley, made a reference to Germany’s Aldolf Hitler. From a man who may have, if not exterminated, then certainly dashed the hopes of hundreds of university students who were looking forward to an opportunity similar to what he had been given, it was a surprising comment; obviously made without looking into the mirror.

Then we had reports of Prime Minister Freudel Stuart, speaking in the United States, delivering the still-born observation that some people were “against” the Minister of Finance because his secondary schooling was at the (then named) Garrison School and not Harrison College.

One is left to wonder whether those comments were more representative of the Prime Minister’s own personal angst that he did not go to Harrison College.

Barbados needs leadership at this time, not personal invective and folly. It is my hope that ALL political parties deal with the issues and offer, not wish lists, but solutions which may help to turn this country around. We need once more to be able to say, “Welcome to Barbados” and not “Welcome to a different place”. Right now it is a different place.

– MICHAEL RUDDER