What a waste!
Barbados could have saved about $75 million on “unnecessary” fetes and other ventures that could have been used in other areas.
This assessment came from parliamentary representative for St Thomas, Cynthia Forde, during her response today to the Budgetary Proposals presented by Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler in the House of Assembly last Monday.
“The Labour Party in just under three years has pursued some projects that it is a good thing that they have not had 14 years because, Mr Speaker, I am seeing some areas of wasted funds,” she stated, adding that the money could have gone to the upgrading of facilities and finding a place to assist children with psychological issues.
The numerous projects at Ilaro Court; the opening of the housing estate at Marchfield, St Philip; the three reshuffles, which necessitated change in stationery, labels and the like; the more than $10 million in summer camps between 2008 and 2009; the launch of the constituency councils; the subsidy to JetBlue and the recent female boxing championship were among the things on the list of “cardinal errors” Forde said the Government made.
“Are we better off today in November 2010 than we were in January 2008?” she queried.
Her claims of unnecessary spending notwithstanding, Forde congratulated Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler on his maiden Budget presentation.
“He’s young. He’s new in the position and I believe we should try to give credit where credit is due . . . . He did set trends in place, and as I said I respect him for that. He really has some courage, Mr Speaker, and he did show the confidence and indeed the articulate style in which he presented the Budget indicated that, according to him, there was hope and reassurance. We are living, sir, in a really very hard and trying period. I have never seen it so rough in my whole life, and certainly beyond 1991. Mr Speaker, it is still not a full prescription for the woes and it doesn’t provide the ease that I expect, particularly when it comes to the working class and the middle class of this country,” Forde contended.