GTUC Will Participate in the Walter Rodney Commission of Inquiry

Submitted by Guyana Trades Union Congress
The late Walter Rodney

The late Walter Rodney

The Guyana Trades Union Congress (GTUC) has retained Civil Rights Lawyer Mr. Selwyn A. Pieters, to represent its interest on the Walter Rodney Commission of Inquiry. The GTUC met the commissioners when they were on their exploratory visit and expressed concerns with the Terms of Reference (ToR). Dr. Walter Rodney remains a national and international figure and in the present circumstance cannot be looked at as the property of a specific family or group, for he belongs to all of us, and consultation as to the way forward in arriving at the truth should have involved everyone. GTUC strongly holds the view that the ToR should have has the input of all the Members of the National Assembly since this was the forum that authorised and approved the decision for an inquiry.

That notwithstanding the GTUC considers the Inquiry an important factor in the nation’s activities, for Dr. Walter Rodney’s death has been used as a wedge in dividing families, friends, associates, political aspirants and communities. The GTUC is conscious of its role as a national organisation and guided by historical developments has taken a decision that it will not stand idly by and allow a national commission of this nature to commence and conclude without Labour making its position known. The GTUC prior to Rodney’s death had addressed issues surrounding him as a worker, historian and citizen, and on his demise called for an inquiry into his death. At this juncture, while there are understandable concerns about the absence of consultation and the ToR upon which the Commission will deliberate, GTUC owes this society a duty to assist in arriving at the truth.

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Oh NO, Dennis Clarke!

Danny Gill is a member of the NUPW

Danny Gill is a member of the NUPW

I am responding to the attention grabbing headline carried on the front page of the Thursday, April 17, 2014 Nation Newspaper :- “CLARKE HITS OUT”. In that piece, which was accompanied with the additional headline No Solidarity on page 3, the General Secretary of the NUPW has been reported to say that the appointed and assumed “safe” members in the NUPW showed little or no interest in caring about their fellow comrades who were sent home or being sent home in the recent retrenchment exercise. He went on further to indicate that even when the prospect or discussion about striking to support their fellow comrades was put on the table or introduced, many of the appointed and “safe” civil servants hid beneath the burden of having a “mortgage”. I must take strong exception to this story. For the most part, it appears to be some sort of “public relations” face saving gimmick for the General Secretary Dennis Clarke. It also could be an attempt by him to explain away his failure to effectively lead the union in a time of crisis. It is an affront to all members to be “scape goated” for Mr. Clarke’s considerable failings.

I have been on the National Council of the NUPW for more than four years. The National Council is the NUPW’s highest decision making body outside of its Annual Conference. During my tenure, there has been no discussion or even a hint at striking against the current administration.

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Metabolic Syndrome: Fatty Bum Bum

Barbadians love sugar and this is no secret. We are known also as the amputation capital of the world and the high incidence of non communicable diseases is also no secret. There is evidence more Barbadians are buying into good diet and exercise albeit at too sluggish a rate.

Related link: Rational Approach To Diet, Exercise

Thanks to Bentley.

Notes From a Native Son: Insurance Companies Are a Licence to Print Money: Who Insures the Insurers?

Hal Austin

Hal Austin

All financial firms should by law be compelled to submit an annual business model to the regulator and supervisor for assessment if they are to continue to trade. This should be a basic condition to provide adequate consumer protection and the integrity of the financial supervisory and regulatory systems.
As has been stated before, the business models of insurance companies and banks, the two major financial sectors, are totally different. While banks borrow short and lend long, a flawed business model if ever there was one, insurance companies are often compelled to have a capital adequacy of at least 110 per cent of its likely liabilities. And, of the various branches of insurance – unemployment, health, home, motoring, disaster, etc. – the greatest moral hazard is motor insurance; it is the low hanging fruit, in that it is the easiest for insurance companies to make lots of money while paying out a relatively low percentage of claims.

First, unlike life and health insurance, or even unlike home and contents insurance, motorists are compelled by law to have insurance. Unlike life and pensions insurance, for example, there is no need to base actuarial assumptions on a continuous mortality investigation report and the one in two hundred event assumption is in many ways only theoretical since there is no longevity risk. Generally, there are two broad kinds of insurance regulation: firm-specific and industry-wide. Firm-specific regulation and supervision is when the authorities are focusing on a single firm, going through its books, interrogating its staff, and talking to a sample of its customers. This may arise out of a formal complaint, market rumour, suspicion or a randomised stress test.

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First Sexual Experience: 40% of Bajan Females Point to Being Coerced or Rape

Submitted by Charles Knighton
Dr. Clive Landis,  Professor Cardiovascular Research University of the West Indies ... · Chronic Disease Research Centre

Dr. Clive Landis, UWI
  · Chronic Disease Research Centre

Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, Stephen Lashley, has again stressed the importance of keeping aspects of Barbados’ heritage (traditions) and history in the forefront during the season of Emancipation, “so that both young people and adults can truly appreciate what is being celebrated.”  A society that does not either understand or value its history and traditions is a society verging on suicide, for if you don’t know your history, then you don’t know anything. You are a leaf that doesn’t know it is part of a tree. And what is tradition if not the living faith of the dead?

In her article Tourism defenders (April 15 Advocate), Janelle Husbands leads with the adage that “good news travels fast and bad news even faster” before discussing the importance of the image we portray in attracting tourists to Barbados.

What image of Barbados was portrayed by the recent release of the findings of a study by Dr. Clive Landis that forty percent of Barbadian females’ first sexual experiences came about through coercion or by rape? Though males were not included in this study, with such a high percentage of females reporting such experiences, it seems safe to draw the inference that over half of all children in Barbados are victims of sexual abuse.

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Prime Minister Freundel Stuart’s Vision for Agriculture

Click to read full text of the speech (Adobe PDF)

Click to read full text of the speech (Adobe PDF)

Trade Unions and the Great Conspiracy

Submitted by William Skinner
...Barbados Labour Party has been in the main supported by the traditional corporate sector ...

…Barbados Labour Party has been in the main supported by the traditional corporate sector …

In our midst, there are some very skilful manipulators of public opinion, who would like to give the impression that the trade union movement has only been in bed with the Democratic Labour Party. This is a great lie. The truth is that both the Barbados Labour Party and the Democratic Labour Party have enjoyed incestuous relationships with the trade unions. I say unions because a very close and objective observation would reveal that none of the major unions has avoided being hijacked, at some point or the other, by members of the two ruling parties.

Ever since the fall of Grantley Adams, the Barbados Labour Party has been in the main supported by the traditional corporate sector and really had no need for the financing of its politics either in money or kind from the BWU. This left the field wide open for Errol Barrow to inflame the traditional white corporate sector and skilfully create a black rising business/professional class that has supported the Democratic Labour Party. Barrow established a very clever bond of capital and Labour and with great cunning, convinced the masses that the Dems were for them and the Bees for the whites. The Bees equally cunning deliberately started to paint the Dems as anti-employer and the ploy of these two behemoths parties has continued. And it has worked amazingly well.

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