Message of hope
The Barbados Labour Party candidates for St. Michael came with a message last evening at the party’s mass rally at Haggatt Hall, St. Michael.
Ronald Toppin, incumbent for St. Michael North called it a mixture of business with pleasure; hopeful for St. Michael West Central, Ian Gooding-Edghill, said it was a message to the Democratic Labour Party, while Arthur Holder, who is contesting in St. Michael Central told the audience he was bringing a message of hope.
Speaking at the rally interspersed with entertainment from some of the island’s popular soca, reggae and R&B artists, Toppin said he believed the people of Barbados and the BLP would make “a great team together”.
He told the crowd: “[W]hile there is a lot of work to be done to rescue Barbados, with your help we can do it and will do it again.”
In spite of the entertainment, Toppin warned that there was a serious message, which was that “Barbados is sinking”.
Unemployment, he said, was rising and things were getting harder and harder, but “the most serious message is that help is coming with Owen Arthur and the Barbados Labour Party. Under Owen we did it before and with your help and the help of God we will do it again”.
The veteran MP claimed he would win his seat for the fifth straight time, shouting that there was, “No stopping Toppin”.
Gooding-Edghill asked the crowd if it felt that the DLP was getting the message, declaring that he believed they had got the message that the BLP was here to win.
A walk through the constituency, he said, revealed people who were suffering, enduring pain and who were finding it difficult to make ends meet “because of the wrong policies being pursued by DLP”.
“We have to say: enough pain in St. Michael West Central, enough pain in Bridgetown. We have to show leadership and put Barbados back on the map and make sure you have a better quality of life.
“Do you want prosperity? Do you want effective representation in St. Michael West Central. If you want a strong country, prosperity and a better tomorrow, vote Barbados Labour Party.”
Holder, in his offering, declared he had come to give hope to the people of St. Michael Central.
“On February 21, the days of the karaoke politician will be over,” he said, stating that he would win the poll and send his opponent, Steve Blackett, back “to the Riverside where he will be welcomed to VOB”.
In 2008, the DLP had promised prosperity, employment, an improvement in the standard of living if Barbadians voted for them, said Holder, but what had in fact transpired was “massive levels of poverty, massive levels of unemployment and increases in the cost of living”.
“What has the Barbados Labour Party done for you and what will they do for you? The Barbados Labour Party has assembled a team of confident, articulate, erudite persons who possess ability, capacity and capability to give you hope,” he stated, telling the audience that on February 21 they needed to vote BLP.
“[V]ote in your numbers. Not only in numbers, but send clear message to DLP, Freundel Stuart and the bunch of wild boys and hooligans. Vote them out of office. There is only one party that can do it in time of recession and that is the Barbados Labour Party,” said Holder. (LB)