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OUTSIDE THE PULPIT: Still too many big rides


Reverend Errington Massiah

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A few weeks ago this column dealt with the number of “MP” and “ML” vehicles owned by the Barbados Government. I felt that the number of such vehicles should be reduced as a form of cost cutting in order to help the Government close the gap in fiscal deficit of $400 million.
I listened very carefully to the Budget speech delivered on Tuesday, August 13, but did not hear anything about those vehicles during the presentation – but I could be wrong and if so, someone please correct me. So I have decided to revisit the topic.
First of all, I would like to have an audit done on how many “MP” and “ML” vehicles we have. I would also like to know what is the fuel bill monthly or annually.
As I said in the first article, there are too many of those vehicles (the big ride). They must be reduced; now is the time. The others must be managed properly which at the moment they are not. Since the country is having financial difficulties, all of us have to cut back, play our part, and make that sacrifice.
I am still seeing many of those “MP” and “ML” vehicles being used as private transport, especially after 4:30 p.m. and on weekends. Who is footing that bill?
Those vehicles must be parked on the Government compound after 4:30 p.m. and on weekends and not at the homes of the workers. The private sector does it; why can’t the Government do likewise?
With technology as it is today, there is no need for a messenger and “MP” or “ML” vehicles to take a letter or document from Government Headquarters to any ministry or department – email, fax, you name it, is there. Technology will take care of business.
I would hope that all Government departments would learn from the Royal Barbados Police Force, where it was reported that its top brass has given instructions to officers to cut back on the gas level and plan their travel while on police business.
To me this is what you call leading by example and making a sacrifice for love of your country.

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