‘Stop placing blame and fix crime, PM’
The Democratic Labour Party (DLP) has called on Prime Minister Mia Mottley to stop the blame game and buckle down to the task of administering the affairs of the country.
The call has come in the wake of the Prime Minister’s attribution of the rise in crime to the DLP’s failure to invest financially in the youth.
Mottley made the comments last week while addressing a gathering of office professionals.
In a statement issued Friday, the DLP declared that “after nine months in office it is time for the Mottley Administration to get on with the job they were elected to do instead of apportioning blame to the former Government whenever solutions evade them”.
The DLP said according to police statistics, crime was on a downward trend for the years 2017 and 2018.
“Murders were down by four, robberies by two, aggravated burglaries by seven and other crimes showed a decrease of three per cent over 2017.
“Conversely, by February of this year, we were turning to the army and prayer for solutions after a rise in murders in the month of January equalled the total number of murders for the first four months of 2018.”
The DLP said it was proud of its record with youth initiatives, many of which the Government condemned and criticised in Opposition and found the first opportunity to abandon as soon as they took office.
“The DLP increased its spend in Youth and Community Development projects from $69m between 2016 to 2017 to $72m in the 2017 to 2018.
“In addition our Government spent $497 631 940 within the Education Ministry in the 2018 to 2019 Estimates period. This Government is asking for $309 930 509 in the current Estimates – more than $100m less.”
The DLP listed community technology programmes at Community Centres; refurbished Community Centres left derelict by the Barbados Labour Party; the Community Dance Fest
which explored the hip hop street dance potential of at-risk teens; the David Thompson Memorial Football Classic which ensured the young male players from every parish received a stipend during participation; the establishment of a modern facility for students having difficulty in the secondary school system; summer camps and the mainstreaming of technical and vocational studies within the formal school curriculum as just a few of the myriad initiatives introduced to assist in addressing some of the root issues encountered with the youth.
But the party has emphasised that challenges of the day cannot be solved merely by throwing money at programmes. It said parents and leaders have to set the tone and lead by example.
“This country has to return to solid home and family life and leadership by example. Not only within the home and school but at the highest political level.”
The DLP called on Mottley and her team to abandon the empty carping and seek to grapple with the root causes of the societal issues in a mature manner.
David Thompson Memorial Football Classic was one of the programmes which benefited the youth.