Thursday, April 18, 2024

PM: Hope for Barbados

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BARBADOS is not on the verge of collapse but serious measures must be put in place to ensure there is no further erosion of the economy.
This is the position of Prime Minister Freundel Stuart as he challenged party faithfuls to spread the message of hope in face of tough economic times the country was facing. It also comes against the background of thousands of public sector workers soon to be laid off.
“We are making them [decisions]. I know that workers are human beings and with the best will in the world and no matter how caring you are, as a worker you want your job. But as I said over and over again, if the structure of any building is unsound, there is no safe room in that building,” Stuart said.
He also said he did not think his Government was in office by accident because it was made to deal with “tough times”.
Stuart was speaking at the premiere of the 2014 lecture series of the James Tudor Institute of Politics at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre last Saturday. The event, held to celebrate the birthday of the late Errol Barrow, first prime minister of Barbados and Father of Independence, also attracted a number of Cabinet members, members of the Barrow family and Sir Lloyd and Lady Sandiford.
Stuart said his Government had to make sure the structure of Barbados’ economy was strong.
“And that is what the Government is hard at work doing. We don’t apologise for it because quite frankly, if you have severe tooth decay, the dentist does not apologise for extraction . . . . Certain things you look and certain things you do not like, but there is a third category, certain things are absolutely necessary.”
He also thanked the members of the Cabinet “for their high-mindedness that they have shown in this very difficult period.
I don’t think that it was any accident that we are in office at this time. We were made for tough times”.
He said the previous administration made their decisions “on catching the winds of popular favour”.
“When Erskine Sandiford was asked . . . how he felt about the personal price he had to pay – great statesman as he is – said ‘the price I had to pay was small when put against the good I did for Barbados’.”
The Prime Minister said the same strength of character that saw Barbados through previous economic challenges would see it through again.

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