Opposition Leader Mia Mottley has outlined a four-point plan which she believes can get Barbados on the right footing, in light of looming layoffs in the public.
Key among the proposals is the establishment of an Eminent Persons Group to address the national economic concerns, “as a matter of utmost urgency.”
“This group should be set up no later than January 6th, 2014 and should be given four weeks to report back to the country as to all of the necessary actions to be taken to truly stabilize Barbados and return us to growth,” she told journalists during a media conference yesterday at the Office of Opposition Leader in the West Wing of Parliament.
The second part of the plan calls for Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler to be fired and replaced with someone who “we trust and who we can believe.”
“Thirdly the Central Bank must be a neutral, objective voice in the management of this country’s affairs. . . We need a governor who will come to us on a monthly basis and not quarterly now,” Mottley stressed.
The opposition leader said that the other crucial aspect would be for Barbadians to decide “where they want to go”.
“The [Barbados] Labour Party knows where we must go, but the country must decide where it wants to go and what must of necessity happen for us to get there. Sacrifices must not be asked of the people in vain. Sacrifice must mean something,” the opposition leader said, as she alerted Barbadians that the country was in crisis.
“Barbadians have been allowed to engage in a debate this week that would suggest that the laying off of 3, 000 workers in the manner announced or a pay cut by all public servants will bring us to safety and stability. It is a false debate and will not carry us to safety.
“The Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance must come clean with the country and stop spinning tot in mud. Persons are asked to make sacrifices if it will lead to stability or improved circumstances. The question must be asked, ‘Where will these sacrifices take the country and our economy?’” she questioned.
Flanked by St. Thomas MP Cynthia Forde, St. Joseph MP and former attorney general Dale Marshall, and leader of Opposition Business in the House, Kerrie Symmonds, who is the parliamentary representative for St James Central, Mottley also called on members across the floor of Parliament to stop engaging in partisan politics and instead focus on coming up with solutions for the way forward.