PM tells why no reshuffle
Prime Minister Freundel Stuart says that rather than trying to “humiliate” his ministers or to show “how much man I was”, he has always sought to build them up.
And that, he added, was why he had not reshuffled his Cabinet since 2013.
He was responding to a question at a town hall meeting at a Brooklyn church in New York recently.
“After the last general election, I appointed a Cabinet; nobody appointed it for me. I appointed it,” he said. “I said I want “A” to do this and “B” to do that.
“I have followed politics across the Commonwealth all my thinking life and I know that there is a perverse bit of thinking that says ‘you show how strong you are, you show that you are a man by showing that you can tell a minister: Minister X, I am moving you tomorrow, I am sending you there’. Because he wants the job so badly, he would say ‘yes sir’. The people I put in positions that I chose them for in 2013, there was no brain wave. I knew the personalities and I knew what I wanted out of them,” Stuart explained.
“When I saw that they were falling below my standards, I pulled them aside and said, ‘Look, don’t you think you should look at this? I don’t think you are delivering in this area as effectively as you should or could. Don’t you think you should adopt this approach and so on and so on? In other words, rather than trying to humiliate men or to show how much man I was, I try to build them. I try to strengthen.
“So, Errol Barrow had his own style, Tom Adams his, Erskine Sandiford his, (Owen) Arthur his. And my (immediate) predecessor David Thompson (his own).”
Stuart stressed he did not have to prove to anybody he was Prime Minister of Barbados.
“I am. I don’t care how hard historians try, you can’t write about the first prime minister of Barbados, the second, the third, the fourth, fifth and the sixth and you go to the eighth. You got to come to the seventh.
“And you have to say that Fruendel Stuart managed Barbados through its most challenging crisis since Independence, the period between 2008 and 2018, and it has to speak of his achievements, including keeping Barbados safe and raising the country to new and unimagined horizons,” he told the gathering. (TB)