Kellman opens for business during storm

While Minister of Home Affairs Adriel Brathwaite was condemning as “irresponsible” the operators of a local fast food outlet and a supermarket chain for opening for business while the country was under a tropical storm warning, one of his cabinet colleagues was engaging in the very practice he had condemned.

Yet, Minister of Housing Denis Kellman contended that Brathwaite’s criticism did not pertain to him because he was simply accommodating “some people like any normal country shop would”.

Minister of Home Affairs Adriel Brathwaite
Minister of Home Affairs Adriel Brathwaite

Brathwaite told a news briefing at the headquarters of the Department of Emergency Management (DEM) in Warrens, St Michael this morning that it was “irresponsible” for businesses to place their employees’ lives in danger by asking them to report to work today despite a national shutdown.

“While we understand the importance of businesses and what they are trying to do, the reality is this, from what we are being told, it is dangerous out there. And I think it is irresponsible for these institutions, if what I am hearing is correct, to open for business at this point in time when we are asking persons to stay indoors because of how dangerous their surroundings are,” Brathwaite said.

Minister of Housing Denis Kellman
Minister of Housing Denis Kellman

The owners of the fast food outlet and supermarket chain could not be reached for comment; but Kellman, who owns St Elmo’s Moon Town in St Lucy, told Barbados TODAY he was not being irresponsible.

“I think what you should do is listen to the Labour officer. He fully explained certain circumstances. I think what the [Minister of Home Affairs] is talking about is those people who called out people to work,” Kellman explained.

However, Barbados TODAY was told that some of Kellman’s employees were privately protesting that they could not be with their families because they had to work.

Moontown offering food for sale during today's storm passage.
Moontown offering food for sale during today’s storm passage.

Meantime, a business on the west coast, which also defied the national shutdown, attracted unfavourable comments on social media.

lemongrassAccording to a post on Facebook, Lemongrass Noodle Bar & Grill at the Limegrove Lifestyle Centre in Holetown, St James described itself as an essential service, stating that all of the employees were on duty because they chose to, and they enjoyed their work.

The poster also suggested that opening today was a question of work ethic.

But in response, one person scoffed at those remarks, branding the poster as an embarrassment to the company. No one from Lemongrass could be reached for comment.

However, the Minister of Home Affairs was not the only one expressing concern today about the apparent disregard of storm warnings issued by weather officials.

Executive Director of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) Ronald Jackson also raised the issue today, while pleading with the public to show “confidence in the region’s meteorologist”.

Jackson did not make direct reference to the business that opened when he addressed journalist at a news conference on the passing of Tropical Storm Matthew, held jointly with the Caribbean Institute of Meteorology and Hydrology (CIMH), at CDEMA’s Lower Estate headquarters.

Instead, he focused on the public, which he claimed tended to ignore warnings or to be slow to respond to orders to shut down.

There is an issue I want to confront and I don’t think we should dodge it. There is a dialogue that ensues when Government seeks to call on the country to shut down and there is a lull in terms of what would have been the expected time and time of impact. There is this view that there was a mistake made. What we need to understand that meteorology is not an exact science,” Jackson said.

Both CDEMA and CIMH also cautioned the public following satellite imagery online and making predictions about the possible impact of storms, insisting that only meteorologists had the requisite training to make predictions on trajectory based on such images. (EJ/CM)

42 Responses to Kellman opens for business during storm

  1. Zamfir Waltz
    Zamfir Waltz September 28, 2016 at 8:55 pm

    Chloe John your favourite person

  2. Angela Thompson Branch
    Angela Thompson Branch September 28, 2016 at 8:57 pm

    The man at one of his constituency branches holding council and warming a few livers.

  3. Gavin Dawson
    Gavin Dawson September 28, 2016 at 8:58 pm

    Rules for others different for Kellman!

    • Ashanti Padilla
      Ashanti Padilla September 28, 2016 at 9:33 pm

      It’s a rum shop that he operated on his own. No staff were called out.

    • Gavin Dawson
      Gavin Dawson September 28, 2016 at 9:44 pm

      Ashanti Padilla but he opened and there was a close down of Business issued by the Govt which he is part of, so that is even worse rules for other business even Applies to Kellman, so if others opened then why not? an MP of todays Govt broke the rules of the party he represents, not good.

  4. Adrian Reid
    Adrian Reid September 28, 2016 at 8:59 pm

    Who the cat like he lick

    • Sonia Romain
      Sonia Romain September 28, 2016 at 9:33 pm

      And who the cat don’t like he scratch.

  5. Alex Alleyne September 28, 2016 at 9:13 pm

    Yet another “Black-owned” business being put up for the kill. Fast food joints were also opened according to some reports, but refused to list names.
    Please tell us which CHEFETTE, BURGER KING and KENTUCKY fast food joints were open.

  6. Gee Zette
    Gee Zette September 28, 2016 at 9:17 pm

    I guess his place was not a business that it was open today..well well

  7. Michelle Barber
    Michelle Barber September 28, 2016 at 9:20 pm

    Yup that is such as Essential service…. the same heat lemongrass got needs to be pointed this way too.

    • Michelle Barber
      Michelle Barber September 28, 2016 at 9:28 pm

      Lisa De Souza that is good. Same rules should apply to all with fines.

  8. Ashanti Padilla
    Ashanti Padilla September 28, 2016 at 9:32 pm

    It’s a freaking rum shop and plenty were open today as well. He didn’t have to call anyone out to operate it. Leave him alone.

  9. Sisi Greenidge
    Sisi Greenidge September 28, 2016 at 9:39 pm

    Chefette wasn’t open. Check their page

  10. Fancyface Empress-t
    Fancyface Empress-t September 28, 2016 at 9:44 pm

    If the owner is who work um I n see nuttin wrong wud dah

  11. Zeus September 28, 2016 at 9:59 pm

    How come all other articles printed today have the name of a journalist attached to unlike this one ….I thought journalism was fearless job once the article is fair to the subject …..what gives here BT

  12. Ryan Bayne
    Ryan Bayne September 28, 2016 at 10:06 pm

    This picture speaks a thousand words and Kellman is gonna be the talk of the town on “Down to Brass Tacks” and “Talk Yuh Talk”..

    • Tristan John
      Tristan John September 29, 2016 at 7:49 am

      I doubt. Even if, the producers on both programs will mute most of what is said.

    • Ryan Bayne
      Ryan Bayne September 29, 2016 at 9:45 am

      As they always do

  13. Veroniva Boyce
    Veroniva Boyce September 28, 2016 at 10:09 pm

    Last thing on ‘How can 80% be greater than 20%?’ AKA Sellman money grabbing mind is the citizens safety. Minister of Housing? I beg to differ more like Minister of Money Bags all he focusing on Me, Myself and I. And wunna foolish enough to entertain him.

  14. AniRo Ararek
    AniRo Ararek September 28, 2016 at 10:23 pm

    If the owners operating their business that’s their prerogative. But when they say island wide shutdown, people really should comply. Obviously though, remember we have 2 Barbados.

  15. Philip Matthews
    Philip Matthews September 28, 2016 at 10:25 pm

    Politicians always feel they are above the Law

  16. Santini More
    Santini More September 28, 2016 at 10:27 pm

    He, and any other business’ open during this storm watch should have been slapped with an Enforcement Order and made to close. Totally ridiculous.

  17. Joan Wickham
    Joan Wickham September 28, 2016 at 10:32 pm

    i wonder what the AG is saying about his buddy/irresponsibility, opening his business, lol

  18. Wayne R. Pilgrim-Cadogan
    Wayne R. Pilgrim-Cadogan September 28, 2016 at 10:52 pm

    What do you expect of him, he is just an opportunist!

  19. Phil September 29, 2016 at 12:09 am

    wunna fail to realize that we have visitors ( the white people from north America and England) and foreigners ( the black people from the rest of the Caribbean) and they have to eat too. and from what I heard, Lots od hotel restaurants were CLOSED1 These people had to eat too. All Chinese restaurants were opened. and they did a good taking. I know. I had Chinese today.

  20. Frank Fowler
    Frank Fowler September 29, 2016 at 1:39 am

    If a sitting minister of government can’t follow the rules that was issued by his own government, why would anyone else be expected to?

    • Lily Bella September 29, 2016 at 10:12 pm

      Seriously, that’s is lack of respect ✊ for his own government, that is not funny…..kellman should know better! Give respect get respect, it look like theirs 8 Barbados instead of 2

  21. Ronnie Warren
    Ronnie Warren September 29, 2016 at 2:47 am

    Service industry, slap hotels as well with Enforcement Order while you at it…..

  22. Farmerfitch September 29, 2016 at 5:29 am

    What is a member of parliament doing operating a business,I stand corrected,me thought that once you were an mp that these things should be given up or shelved like doctors.we need to hear exact word on these things.too much uncertainty.what is happening in and with our country?

  23. Horace Boyce
    Horace Boyce September 29, 2016 at 5:37 am

    Its not a rum shop

  24. Nico HL Beckles
    Nico HL Beckles September 29, 2016 at 6:26 am

    I like how puppets answer to this article was “Other places were open too”. So that means it was right just because Barbados got more greedy demons than expected? People really turn semi-retarded when they defend someone they like, hell if a tree had fallen into one of these businesses and injured the employees ya would be saying the same damn thing right?

  25. Dan Vaughn
    Dan Vaughn September 29, 2016 at 7:01 am

    And he’s a minister should lead by example .Then they want to discipline others

  26. Ryan Bayne
    Ryan Bayne September 29, 2016 at 7:06 am

    Obviously. Kellman musse full to the brim on the news yesterday.

  27. ricardo September 29, 2016 at 7:18 am

    Rums shops always open for anyone in the Community storm por no storm was that way for years we tres up with this happening

  28. ricardo September 29, 2016 at 7:21 am

    Phill hotels never closed staff are always there to feed the guest its imposible to closed a hotel with guest occuppying it

  29. Elke Hassell
    Elke Hassell September 29, 2016 at 8:59 am

    The complete Irony!!!

  30. Smiley September 29, 2016 at 9:22 am


  31. Hunte Omar
    Hunte Omar September 29, 2016 at 11:51 am

    He should be fired , he is a bad example and his action clearly undermined the experts guidance during impending danger. Back in the United States in New Orleans during an impending storm , residents ignored warnings to evacuate and they suffered the consequences. New Orleans was devastated and persons were trap

  32. Amelia Gittens
    Amelia Gittens September 29, 2016 at 12:54 pm

    If you know this place it does not close this shop runs 24 hours rain fall sunshine, and from experience in emergency times I have seen MR Kellman working on his own, so I would be very surprise if he did call his staff out to work, rules & law said endanger staff only staff would be him the owner, but if he did call his staff out then I have a problem with that

    • Amelia Gittens
      Amelia Gittens September 29, 2016 at 12:59 pm

      I have been there xmas day, easter day and this shop is open and I always saw him at the cash register

  33. ch September 30, 2016 at 1:17 am

    Bajans never fail to be ignorant. The principle is this- if persons open their businesses ( the owner alone, or not) or people go on the roads or to the beach, they create potential and avoidable stress on our limited emergency services.
    Under extreme weather conditions, there is high risk for accidents when drivers lose control; structures collapse or fall onto other structures; electrocutions by lightning or downed power poles, can happen. And so much more.
    It is arrogance to defy the DEM shutdown. But I am telling our emergency responders- if the day comes, let them lie down where they are and they will live or die. Do not endanger your lives nor divert resources from the unavoidable emergencies.


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