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In the mail

Retired justice Frederick Waterman.

by Roy R. Morris

Just under 10 persons named in the report of the Commission of Enquiry into the Alexandra School should keep their eyes on the mailbox over the next two days.

That’s because personnel in the Prime Minister’s Office spent much of Saturday preparing letters for immediate dispatch, outlining “matters arising” from the evidence collected by sole commissioner, retired justice Frederick Waterman.

While Barbados TODAY was unable to ascertain the full list of persons who would be served with notice via the postman or messengers from Government Headquarters on Bay Street, one source said Principal Jeff Broomes and department head Amaida Greaves, Deputy Principal Beverley Neblett-Lashley and teacher Roger Broomes should keep a close eye on their mailbox.

That source said too that based on the thinking of Prime Minister Freundel Stuart, the entire board of management should also listen for news of their future association with the school.

At a press conference on Saturday, Stuart, who had advised the Governor General to establish the commission after years of turmoil at the school climaxed with a prolonged strike by a majority of teachers, revealed that certain action was taking place in relation to Alexandra, but declined to go into details.

A source at Government Headquarters noted that it was imperative that notice be served on the named parties in order for certain steps to take place, and that it was necessary to get “certain matters out of the way” before the full report gets into the public domain – something that is expected to take place this week.

Sources at Bay Street also explained that officials were preparing for the inevitable backlash of court action that would ensue once the lawyers representing various parties named in the report are also served this week.

Barbados TODAY has learnt that in addition to a high level meeting between the top brass of the Ministry of Education and the Prime Minister at his official residence just over two weeks ago, followed by an off-scheduled meeting of the Cabinet last Monday at which not even the agenda was provided to members before they arrived at Bay Street, senior officials of the education ministry and the Prime Minister’s office had been in intense discussions with the offices of the Attorney General and Solicitor General “seeking advice, clarification and direction” on the path to take over the next few weeks.

According to the source at Government Headquarters, based on the concerns of Prime Minister Stuart, it was hardly likely that the current board of management of the Alexandra School, headed by former Cabinet minister and stalwart of the ruling Democratic Labour Party, Keith Simmons QC, would survive beyond the coming weeks.

Barbados TODAY has learnt that news has already filtered back to Government Headquarters of a major blow-up last week between principal Broomes, who broke his sick leave to attend an Estimates meeting with senior officials of the Ministry of Education, and board chairman Simmons.

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