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AS I SEE THINGS: Cost of living, electricity biggest hurdles


Brian Francis

AS I SEE THINGS: Cost of living, electricity biggest hurdles

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The Mighty Gabby had a list and now THE?NATION has a list of its own. While Gabby’s list was entirely fictional, the same cannot be said of THE?NATION’S.
But in an amazing display of political amateurism some politicians tried desperately to fool the public into believing that like Gabby, THE?NATION had created out of thin air a list of 11 who wanted to have an urgent audience over the leadership and direction of the country with a Prime Minister behind whom they stood solidly only a few weeks ago.
While this development may seem trivial to some, there are in my opinion serious domestic concerns of a political nature that cannot be treated lightly by those who have a genuine interest in the socio-economic development of the country.
When political cataclysm is coupled with a weak and struggling economy, a formula for disaster is being drafted and that cannot redound to anyone.
A resolution on the political front rests heavily in the hands of the Prime Minister who is yet to make his move in this interestingly poised game of political chess.
I await his move with bated breath.
In as much as the prevailing political developments are by nature and design quite fascinating, there are surely other serious domestic concerns that should be quite worrying.  
Topping that list is the continual increase in the cost of living. As troubling as the macroeconomic side of the cost of living is, I am even more frustrated by what is happening in relation to specific prices, none more alarming than the price of electricity.
I am totally convinced that the outrageous increase in electricity bills in just the past year alone is a clear demonstration of a monopoly “gone wild”.  
The heavy and yet to be justified burdens that consumers of electricity in Barbados have had to bear in recent times only serve to reinforce my economic rejection of a private monopoly in what can easily be considered a sector that produces an output that has become a necessity in Barbadian culture.
Despite the gloom and doom of this matter at the moment, there seems to be some light at the end of the tunnel for domestic electricity consumers if we are to believe and accept the word of the new head of Barbados Light & Power.
In what I can only describe as a breath of fresh air, the new head has committed to working assiduously to lower the price of electricity in Barbados. What a welcome pledge!  
I wish him success and so too should every Barbadian.
Finally, now that the International Monetary Fund stands firmly behind the Statistical Department’s unemployment figure, I hope that the recent controversy over the data will never arise again.
Barbados cannot afford such a situation to arise again, especially when we all should be aware and appreciate the outstanding work that has been done by the Statistical Department over many decades.
Enough with the numbers gimmicks!

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