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Sir Roy condemns vote selling, buying

CAROL MARTINDALE, [email protected]

Sir Roy condemns vote selling, buying

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Independent Senator Sir Roy Trotman has condemned the buying or selling of votes during last month’s General Election in which the Democratic Labour Party secured a close 16-14 win over the Barbados Labour Party.
An emotional Sir Roy told the Upper House earlier today that politicians need to understand they cannot take the moral high ground by preaching good actions when they are in the Senate Chamber or House of Assembly, and follow that up by going to the villages around Barbados and encouraging Barbadians to be dishonest in the practice of their democratic right to vote.
Sir Roy, who is also general secretary of the Barbados Workers’ Union, spoke on the vote-selling issue for the first time as he wrapped up his hour-long contribution to debate on the 2013-14 Appropriations Bill in the Upper House.
“I have been very worried about the charges I have heard from ordinary men and women on the street regarding the quantum of money with which votes were being sought. What that does is create a climate which will take representative politics beyond the reach of representatives who will truly be representative.
“On either side of the political divide there must be a major effort made towards transparency that will speak to the evilness of this exercise,” Sir Roy added.
“This business – who were involved and were able to tell the public the results because they knew – begs the question, were they counting on the basis of the money spent.
“This is a serious problem and the longer we take [to solve it], the more we are likely to push it under the carpet and sweep it away.”According to Sir Roy, hypocrisy should not be allowed to fester.
“We can’t be preaching decency and high morality from these chambers and then going among the people in their villages and teaching them how to be dishonest.
“If we want to build a community, we should start with ourselves,” the veteran trade unionist concluded. (BA)