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Charles Griffith: Home drums beat first


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Charles Griffith: Home drums beat first

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There’s a reason Charles Griffith chose as his slogan “Home drum beats first.”

Over the past five years, that drumbeat to serve the people of St John has been getting too loud for Griffith to ignore.  When it comes to the parish where he grew up and still lives, Griffith is unapologetically proud and extremely devoted to the people.

Couple Griffith’s desire with a sense of timing and an innate belief that somehow serving St John is part of his destiny in life, then you can fully grasp the commitment of the veteran youth officer with the Ministry of Youth.

“It is alleged that The Right Excellent Sir Errol Walton Barrow indicated that St John will someday provide a representative from amongst the people of St John,”’ Griffith said. “My candidacy at this point and time is a reflection of that prophecy. So yes I believe that I am here at an opportune time and a time to make a difference.”

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According to Griffith, he wants to make a difference in the sense of hopelessness that many people in St John have revealed to him during his time canvassing.

He has heard their complaints of being forgotten and left behind.

“Representation from the member of parliament was nonexistent. You have a case where you cannot turn to someone who is supposed to be in a position to help you because it seems as if that individual was bankrupt of ideas as well in order to move your position forward,” he said.

“So therefore who do you turn to If not the elected MP.” With the general election approaching on May 24, Griffith hopes the voters will turn to him as their next MP. He feels that it can only be one of St John’s native sons who can truly do justice to the issues the constituency currently faces.

“The infrastructure in St John is probably the worst there is in Barbados. There is no real sporting activity going on. There is no cultural activity going on. We have poor bus systems on the routes. There are no projects happening in St John, so hence St John is virgin for development,” he said candidly.

“There are about five or six agricultural plantations that are currently idle as well. There’s nothing to hold onto to say this is coming at the end of the rainbow because in some cases we’re not even seeing the rainbow. ”

 

During his time canvassing Griffith has remarked on his time spent in the community and his growing concerned for the youth and the older people of St John as well.

“If people do not see programmes or initiatives that can provide them with a second chance or that can move them from one spot to an elevated position, then you would be frustrated,” Griffith said. “That is one of the things that I plan to change by providing programmes for entrepreneurial activities.

“Entrepreneurship is one of the planks of my candidacy. The fact that there is a reservoir of talent is St John that is untapped it means that entrepreneurship would stem the effect of unemployment in St John. The BLP is proposing to provide seed money for those persons who are interested in starting their own business. Five thousand dollars in the first instance and then you graduate to $10 000 after that. But entrepreneurship is the main factor to lowering that unemployment rate in St John.”

 

Griffith acknowledges that rebuilding trust among his constituents is just as important as rebuilding St John. For many in the community, both young and old, feel as though they live in the place that the Democratic Labour Party has forgotten.

“There is a track record of my work in St John through several community-based projects, through skills to work projects, so I think when they see me in St John it is that he has been tested before working as a youth officer in St John,” Griffith said.  “I have a track record of doing things in St John. I have been involved in community development, I coached one of the basketball teams, I’ve been the president of several organisations in St John including Parent Teacher Associations, and I have done projects that have changed lives in St John,” he said. “None of this George Pilgrim is bringing to the table.”

The above is a paid political broadcast sponsored by the Barbados Labour Party. The views and opinions expressed in this broadcast are those of the speakers and do not necessarily reflect or represent the views and opinions of the Nation.

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