Arthur, DLP and political expedience
IF THE Democratic Labour Party (DLP) Government has proven that it is good at anything, it has to be that it is good at playing political games, doing almost exclusively what is politically expedient, and that without a doubt for them it will always be party first.
The DLP is without a doubt the worst government of recent time, in terms of managing the economic and social affairs of the state and its people. Its members seem to spend most of their time concentrating on ways in which to hold on to power, even though it is glaringly obvious, for the sake of power itself.
I have always had major respect for the economic prowess of former prime minister Owen Arthur. It is because of his abilities that I want to believe that the step he now takes is not linked to the obvious dislike he holds for the Leader of the Opposition, but simply out of love for country. God and all the angels know that the DLP need the help, since they have proven for eight long and arduous years that they cannot get the job done. To be honest, I really want to continue to see the former prime minister as a statesman and patriot of our fine nation.
In 2015 Opposition Leader Mia Mottley, on seeing the economic and accompanying social devastation of the country, suggested that a council of eminent persons be convened. The idea seemed, of course, that this bipartisan team would pool ideas designed to bring about much-needed economic change.
Instead, Prime Minister Freundel Stuart, in his usual egotistical manner, dismissed Owen as having no special insights and having no magic potion. And Owen in fact declined Mia’s suggestion, a suggestion that on the eve of election in Barbados, when the bottom has all but fallen out the proverbial boat, when the task of turning around the country has become much more difficult, Owen has now risen to. I struggle with his decision because of the obvious politics at play, and because of my inherent love of country, which indeed compels me to want whatever is best for Barbados.
However, to my mind, even if Owen is able to help the DLP to turn around the country, it has never been clearer that neither he nor the DLP are no longer what is best for the country.
We have a situation where he, instead of heeding Mia’s call to assist as a part of a task force, when it best could have helped the country, waited until it was politically expedient for him to join the DLP’s ranks. This once great man has fallen more than a few notches in my eyes.
There is no explanation needed to further convince me that the DLP is dangerous for Barbados’ social, political and economic landscape. They have at least done a good job of that on their own.
– DEBRA IFILL (MRS)