Mia Mottley, Leader of the Opposition
The following is a statement issued by the leader of the Opposition Barbados Labour Party Mia Mottley. The action by Mia Mottley may prove to be a defining moment for her in the battle of public perception over BLP leadership. If she is able to rally her troops on Thursday, it will go a long way to prove she is the preferred leader.
The implementation of the Muni Tax, for whatever reason, has provoked Barbadians from all spheres to rally against it. The good thing is that it has brought focus to bear on the vexing issue of solid waste management. Barbadians must try to separate political rhetoric and naked political opportunism from the real issue read Kerri Symmonds.
Thanks #Barbados for coming out to our mass meeting last Sunday to show your support. http://bit.ly/1p7hDKx
I SHALL NOW DO MY DUTY. I propose to take that first step. I have prayed on it. I shall walk. I shall walk on Thursday at midday from Parliament to Government Headquarters on Bay Street.
Marston Gibson, Chief Justice
In a statement from Trinidad extracts which are published in the Nation and Barbados Today, the Chief Justice has said:
“I want to find out what is the Bar’s plan to tackle the growing instances of attorney dishonesty. The twitter in Barbados is that there are several attorneys who are in the same position as the attorney whose case is presently pending before the Court of Appeal,” he said.” [BU’s EMPHASIS]
BU stands to be corrected, but does the CJ not chair the panel of the Court of Appeal before whom this case, recently highlighted by BU has commenced and been adjourned?
If this is indeed the case, for the Chief Justice Gibson (CJ) to allude to it publicly in any way, far less in a press release/statement, is highly improper if he is sitting on the hearing. It is highly improper for any judge to allude in public to a case on which he is sitting – such statements can and must only come from the Bench. And the CJ, not only was not on the Bench, but out of jurisdiction. However, for the CJ, who is head of the Court of Appeal, to make such a statement, especially to the Press, is not only gross misconduct, but brings the courts into disrepute. That is grounds for dismissal from office.
The following extracted from Stephanie Chase’s Facebook page, read and weep.
@ABEDSBARBADOS I was having a great day until I walked into ABED’S & SONS COMPANY LIMITED. First let me state that I have always experienced exceptional customer service from this business up until today. My best friend and I went to purchase ribbon for our upcoming pageant like we have been doing since 2004. As we walked to the ribbon/zips/thread section I noticed that only one sales rep was on duty. He seemed to be new but very pleasant and working diligently to help customers. The line was long so it was clear that each of us would have to wait our turn.
After 37 minutes 20 seconds of waiting a young lady walked behind the ribbon desk. She did not say “Good Afternoon” or ask “Who is next in line?” Instead she picked at her nails, played with her hair and started to form conversation with sales rep who was passing by. Then she asked someone for a pen or pencil no one had so she left behind the counter and went for a pencil. When she returned she flicked though a receipt book for five minutes without looking up at any of the waiting customers. Suddenly a man walked up to the counter. She turned her attention to him and started to serve him. Clearly the 3 people who were waiting patiently in front of my best friend & I to be served were INVISIBLE. My best friend said, “That gentleman came after all of us. Is that the way it is now done?” I was shocked because normally she is never one to complain. The sales rep did not even acknowledge her comment or pay any of us attention. My best friend gently stated,, “Excuse me man we were here waiting patiently.” Again the sales rep did not acknowledge her.
Therold O’neal Fields, another thieving lawyer? – Photo credit: Nation Newspaper
Given the fact that the Bar Association (BA) has now debunked Barry Gale as its president, the actions by the Chief Justice (CJ) in interfering in matters in which he has no authority must now raise the suspicion that the CJ’s conduct was designed to shore up Barry Gale’s position as president of the BA, given the fact that the BA is contemplating taking legal action against the CJ. Whether this was the CJ’s intent or not, is now a moot point as Barry Gale has been voted out of office and Tariq Khan into office.
BU family member Pachamama raised some interesting points recently concerning what happens to lawyers who appropriate money from clients’ funds. BU did a little research on one such case, that of attorney Therold Fields, which provides the template of how things are done in Barbados – See $700,000 theft charge.
The Disciplinary Committee of the BA referred the matter of Mr Fields to the Court of Appeal. And, predictably, in the last week or so, the Court of Appeal adjourned its hearing. Meanwhile, so far as BY can discover, no criminal proceedings for theft have been commenced by the DPP against Mr Fields. And Mr Fields continues to have the right to practice law.
Why has Mr Fields not been criminally indicted? Why has Mr Fields not been suspended from the practice of law? Why is the CJ usurping an authority that he does not have to go after attorneys who are lawfully practicing law and NOT making free with their clients’ money, but merely insisting on their right under the Constitution not to join an association?
The positive coming out of the Muni Tax outrage which is embroiling the country is the focus on the need to examine the cost of energy and solid waste disposal management. The overarching issue threading the vexing issues is poor governance; no transparency, and an unwillingness to implement Freedom of Information and Integrity legislation. The rights of citizens in a democracy must be respected by those elected to serve. This government offered to be more transparent than any other in our post Independence history, the fact that transparency legislation remains outstanding 6 years after being elected does not mean it cannot practice transparency in its decision making.
Barbadians want to know what guarantees have been agreed between the PEOPLE of Barbados (government) and Cahill Energy. And we want to know before the project passes the point of no return. To ask questions should not be interpreted as being against the project, although this is a possibility when all the fact are known, it is about being transparent, something which a government led by Mr. Integrity himself has encountered some difficulty.
Here is a blog posted earlier which deserves greater circulation. It deals with the Barbados Light & Power variable in the equation which focuses on the elephants in the room – Barbados Light & Power and Fair Trading Commission.
Originally posted on Barbados Underground:
The following submission probes government’s energy policy
Barbados Light and Power headquarters on Bay Street
Our energy policy is becoming more and more perplexing. So much so that any reasonable person analyzing the decisions and statements of those whose stewardship we depend on for efficient, reliable, sustainable energy practices would conclude that presently we as a nation could not be any further adrift. Commenting on the same issue, and on the need for a coherent energy blueprint, a well-known businessman recently opined that “there does not seem to be a well –defined and quantified, coordinated and integrated energy policy being articulated by government.” While there may be some merit in this statement, many would argue that any incoherence in our energy policy resides mainly in two locations: Spring Garden and Green Hill.
A clear example of incoherent messaging is the Barbados Light and Power (BL&P) advertisement of Friday May 9th…
View original 162 more words
2nd Quarter Central Bank press conference cancelled
Central Bank’s second quarter review is scheduled for 15 July 2014. A visit to the Central Bank website states, “UPCOMING EVENTS, July 15: Release of Analysis of Barbados’ Economic Performance for the first six months of 2014 Time: 2:00 p.m.” BU has been advised that the Central Bank has cancelled the news conference which has become a standard feature of the Governor Worrell’s quarterly review of Barbados’ economic performance.
Chief Justice Marston Gibson
On June 19, 2004, Chief Justice Marston Gibson weighed in on the dispute that BU has been covering for some time. That of the Constitution vs the Legal Profession Act Cap 370A. BU has obtained a letter from the CJ to Mr Barry Gale QC, the president of the Bar Association – see letter sent by the CJ to Barry Gale.
The history of the Constitution and the Legal Profession Act goes back to the very beginning of the Act and the formation of the BA. The BA’s first president, Mr Jack Dear QC (later Sir John Dear) realising that the Act was fatally flawed and would not stand up to a constitutional challenge, declined to challenge attorneys who opted not to join the BA, most notably Mr Bobby Clarke, who has never been a member of the BA and between whom and Jack Dear, there was no love lost. If anything there was a mutual and well-known animosity. Successive presidents of the BA have also declined to involve themselves in a face-to-face fight against the Constitution, until the advent of Mr Leslie Haynes.
Chief Justice Douglas refused to involve himself, as did Chief Justice Williams and BU has already published the minutes of the BA in which a consultation between the Registrar, Simmons CJ and Simmons CJ’s then prospective son-in-law and BA president Wilfred Abrahams (now Senator Abrahams) in which the advice of Simmons CJ was to, in effect, left it lone – see Tales From The Courts &ndash XII;Barbados Bar Membership Revisited – Registrar and Sir David Simmons, Wilfred Abrahams Exposed
Plase gasification is coming to Barbados!
Within the last seven days a tiny noticed was published in the press that Cahill Energy will convened a ‘Town Hall meeting’ to informed members of the public salient points about the USD300 million waste-to-energy plasma gasification plant. BU has been reliably informed the Town Hall meeting was successfully held and although scheduled to end at 8PM finished about 9PM. The illegal meeting was also mentioned by Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler in a radio program last Sunday.
The Town Planning Act requires that a 28 day notice period be given of such a meeting.
Related Link: Town Planning Act