BLP COLUMN: Dems falling apart
BLP legacy: at Cheapside in The City of Bridgetown built a new bus terminal, started construction of the new multi-storey BTI parking facility and restored the abandoned Old Town Hall into a modern office complex; and restored the “green” to Jubilee Gardens by creating a restful inner-city park for pedestrians.
Barbadians long disappointed by this Democratic Labour Party (DLP) Government’s nearly five straight years of paralysing inaction and engulfing incompetence, on Monday got priceless insights into why the Thompson-Stuart administration is widely regarded as the worst in our history from a least expected source via a most unlikely medium – the Brass Tacks radio call-in programme.
Listeners would have heard Minister of Social Care Steve Blackett intervening with what must have been intended to be a robust defence of his party’s performance in office both at the national and constituency levels.
But rather than triggering the hoped for empathy, by the end of what amounted to 31 minutes of unconvincing excuse making, people had a much better understanding of why the DLP had step by step impoverished our nation’s spirit, society and economy, most graphically symbolized by the recent downgrade to “junk bond status” by Standard & Poor’s.
Sounding disjointed and rattled, the St Michael Central MP, like all the others who speak for the DLP, glaringly failed to offer hope to a down-spirited public, instead sounding like he himself had lost hope, especially when he moaned and groaned about many people not acknowledging or appreciating the “great disadvantage” at which politicians sometimes serve; so that they “really don’t gain anything from being an MP or minister, with sacrifice being made without “great financial reward” for a job that was “very thankless”.
Blackett was seemingly crying out for help with his plaintive plea of “What can you do?” adding “We are doing our best with what little we have,” while pathetically attempting to excuse away the DLP’s monumental failure to reduce the cost of living and fulfil very few of its 2008 manifesto promises.
Blackett’s hapless performance of helplessness is bad enough in itself. But when added to such missteps as the Eager Eleven, solo public outbursts by David Estwick, Ronald Jones, Richard Sealy, Donville Inniss and most recently Adriel Brathwaite, together with what is being heard “on the ground” politically, the picture emerges of a DLP that is falling apart at the seams with individuals “brekking for themselves”. No wonder little benefit to Barbados is being done.
Rather than rejecting manifesto pledges like the Dems, since 1981 BLP Governments have at the end of every five years published Promises And Performance documents recording what has been achieved and explaining what has not. That is why the public is trusting the BLP to Rescue, Rebuild And Restore Barbados.
• Beresford Leon Padmore is a pseudonym for the Barbados Labour Party.