A resilient people
Barbados Labour Party candidate for the City of Bridgetown, Jeffrey Bostic, says the country needs the type of leadership necessary to take it out of the dark period that has been the last five years.
Pointedly addressing his remarks to young voters and those undecided as to which party they will commit their vote, Bostic said that in any organisation or sphere of life, when things were bad and the chips were down, people always looked to those at the helm for proper leadership.
He said even in a home setting when things were difficult young people looked to their parents for encouragement and hope. The parents might not be able to provide everything they need, he added, but as parents they offered advice, encouragement and assistance where they could.
Bostic, a former career soldier, said a responsible Government could not simply throw its hands into the air in surrender but had to offer its people similar encouragement and hope.
The second-time candidate told an attentive audience in the car park of the former Chicken Galore building and along Bank Hall Main Road, that prior to 1994 Barbadians faced difficult times that included an eight per cent salary cut, jobs losses and difficult economic times.
He stressed that at that time the people did not lie down and play dead. He said people decided they would lift themselves out of their circumstances, and as a result a number of roadside trades emerged across Barbados.
An eloquent Bostic noted that one would have thought that the present Government would have drawn example from the fortitude of the people then and not simply content themselves with “playing the blame game” for the island’s current woes over the past five years.
“I am neither an economist, neither am I an idiot. When I look around this Caribbean what I am seeing is that those countries where the governments decided that they were going to find a way out of the situation that confronted them, those countries have been doing relatively well,” he said.
He added that countries like Barbados where the Government simply blamed the previous administration or the global economic recession, the prevailing situation in those nations spoke for itself.
Using some anecdotes of people using their ingenuity to provide food and drink for their families in strained circumstances, Bostic said Barbadians were accustomed to dealing with tough situations and “riding out rough seas”. But he lamented that 2013 found a situation where Government was not providing the leadership to ride out these rough seas, but was in fact creating more rough seas with their policies and satisfying themselves with blaming every “Tom, Dick and Harry” for the country’s economic position.