Monday, April 22, 2024

Stay with the Dems


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Happy New Year! The Democratic Labour Party extends greetings to all Barbadians as we engage a new year. Our country left 2012 with thousands of tourists patronising our shores. According to the newspaper reports, lines snaked through departure areas causing great congestion as local authorities tried to process our visitors.
 From the West to the South coast, we have heard of the reports of hotels booked solid for the winter season. Can you imagine, with all the tourist activity taking place on our shores, we have heard the criticism from the Opposition that nothing is happening in tourism.
The Medium-Term Fiscal strategy along with the head of the Central Bank came under biting criticisms. The Central Bank head became the flavour for the Opposition because his position of defending the parity of the Barbados dollar and reducing the deficit was not what the Apostle of Austerity wanted to hear.
The argument advanced by the Opposition in the period following our coming to office, was the deficit was too high – and we dealt with that. We are now hearing from their spokesperson Clyde Mascoll that it is okay the increase the deficit, strategically, and from Arthur that it’s okay to invest the National Insurance monies, strategically.
The Democratic Labour Party is on record as advancing a case for the utilization of the NIS funds to the benefit of our country. Our only crime as a government, according to the Apostle of Austerity, Owen Arthur, is that we have kept too many people employed. He is on record as uttering his vision of a reduced public service and to increase costs for social services. This, of course, is clothed in what he describes as “tax incentives”.
Barbadians only have to look to its CARICOM neighbours where change of Government has occurred and note the words of the returned leaders.
In Jamaica, a returned People’s National Party has warned Jamaicans of the hard economic decisions that have to be made in 2013. The same team which promised the people of Jamaica a solution to the Jamaica Labour Party’s apparent misadministration. The trade unions in St Lucia have sent a warning to the returned Anthony administration.
The crisis does not disappear with a change in administration. as a matter of fact, recent experience has borne out that its gets worse. We have not turned our back on the people of Barbados and pretended that the recession was some phenomenon occurring within the jurisdiction of our 166 square miles. The DLP has started a programme that has seen more houses constructed in under four years than the Barbados labour Party did in 14 years. An aggressive education expansion programme that has seen new nursery and primary schools built while upgrading secondary school plants. In the area of road works, the government has rolled out extensive activity from the north to the south. We want to assure the public that in 2013, the Freundel Stuart-led DLP will continue to advance a programme where we put people at the centre. Happy 2013, Barbados!
• Douglas Leopold Phillips is a pseudonym for the Democratic Labour Party.


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