Africa recall

Delta State Governor orders immediate return of Nigerian students from Barbados

The plug has been pulled on the Nigerian Delta State Youth Empowerment Programme in Barbados.

The programme, which had been dogged by controversy ever since the 90 Nigerian students arrived here in December to pursue a nine-month course of study at the Barbados Community College (BCC) in tourism and agriculture, has been terminated with immediate effect, according to a notice delivered to the Casa Grande Hotel, Oldbury, St Philip.The students confirmed they had received formal communication that they would be going home.

The Delta State Youth Empowerment Programme facilitated by Barbadian Donna St Hill (inset) has  been dogged by controversy from the very beginning.
The Delta State Youth Empowerment Programme facilitated by Barbadian Donna St Hill has been dogged by controversy from the very beginning.

It stated: “Dear students, please be advised that the Delta State Youth Empowerment Programme Barbados has been terminated with immediate effect by order of His Excellency Governor Emmanuel Uduaghan.

“Further notification will follow to all students from the state government confirming the above status and the subsequent repatriation protocols for return to Nigeria.”

An official close to the programme told Barbados TODAY that while the notice had come from Delta State officials, the US$4.5 milllion initiative had actually been terminated by the Barbados Government.

“They [students] are not being allowed to attend the BCC. All are to return,” the official said, adding that they were still in the dark as to why the plug had been pulled.

“We don’t know why.”

However, liaison officer for the Barbados Government Dr Derek Murray told Barbados TODAY that as far as he was aware, the Freundel Stuart administration did not terminate the programme and, in fact, several options were being examined to make the project work. He declined to elaborate on those options.

Murray also said the information he had was that authorities were awaiting word from the Immigration Department for “certain particulars” so student visas could be issued.Ever since arriving in Barbados at the end of December, the students have been embroiled in controversy, first complaining about the standard of accommodation and the quality of food and lack of water.

However, a small group of the students subsequently apologized to local and Nigerian authorities for the conduct of their colleagues, saying that some of the complaints were fabricated and asking that the programme be maintained.

Before that development, Delta State officials had indicated that they would not only keep the programme, but expand it.“It is the wish of the people and Government of Barbados as well as the wish of the people and Government of Delta State to strengthen this initial step, make it a success and build upon it and scale up our lines of cooperation,” Deputy Governor of Delta State Professor Amos Agbe Utuama told Barbados TODAY when he travelled to Barbados last month.

The Delta State Empowerment Programme also has a Trinidad and Tobago leg for which US$5.5 million was allocated.Students in the twin-island republic are pursuing oil-related courses and that project is reported to be doing well.

Minister of Education Ronald Jones is out of the island and calls to his mobile phone for a response were unsuccessful.

Barbados TODAY was also unable to reach his Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Education Senator Harry Husbands.

emmanueljoseph@barbadostoday.bb

42 Responses to Africa recall

  1. Joel C. Payne
    Joel C. Payne February 7, 2015 at 2:27 am

    next time. Build the school in Nigeria.

    Reply
  2. Poetry Dancer
    Poetry Dancer February 7, 2015 at 3:18 am

    stupssssssssssssssssse why can’t we work together as a race

    Reply
    • Wayne P Hoyte
      Wayne P Hoyte February 7, 2015 at 5:28 am

      why did they made our country look bad by bringing flase claims about the hotel? etc

      Reply
    • Marsha Peppa Fly Hinds-Layne
      Marsha Peppa Fly Hinds-Layne February 7, 2015 at 6:12 am

      ……are you serious….google ‘the hotel’ on Trip advisor…

      Reply
    • Harmony Channay
      Harmony Channay February 7, 2015 at 7:34 am

      No no wayne atleast those claims were true

      Reply
    • Gerard Gordon-Toylor February 7, 2015 at 8:30 am

      I agree wholeheartedly, having only read this report, it is unclear as to why the initiative failed. Complaints about food, water and accommodation…and that’s it?! It appears that everyone wanted it to work, be successful, yet it failed? What am I missing? Is it about financing? Surely, it can’t be about the colour of their skin, or anything cultural?

      I am intrigued to find out more about the initiative here in T&T, sadly, we are usually distracted by all the politically charged news content which comes from what has been the longest running political campaign in our history; four and a quarter years and counting!

      I will be endeavour to find out more!

      Reply
  3. Elizabeth Jordan
    Elizabeth Jordan February 7, 2015 at 3:29 am

    Loss in so many ways: financially, culturally and intellectually! Hope those responsible on both sides reflect on how to maximise such an opportunity next time.

    Reply
  4. Colin A Alexander
    Colin A Alexander February 7, 2015 at 4:01 am

    Great! Barbados has never needed them and I am sure they are needed more in Nigeria.

    Reply
    • Conchita Moseley
      Conchita Moseley February 7, 2015 at 5:03 am

      exactly when I POSTED ON THEM MY COMMENT WAS DEEMED DEROGATORY. Iknow and is exposed to them here in the UK AND TRUST ME THEY ARE NOT NICE PEOPLE .ignoramuses love a white man, insult West indians and call us they slaves. They would have caused trouble anyway… it is best they go home to their people they have problems is Nigeria SADLY BAJANS IN GOT A CLUE BOUT NIGERIANS ….

      Reply
      • Joseph Harding February 7, 2015 at 9:32 am

        Well said. Good riddance.

        Reply
      • sunshinecanda February 7, 2015 at 11:40 am

        Well said Moseley, same prob over here,

        Reply
    • Tanya JL
      Tanya JL February 7, 2015 at 5:11 am

      Preach!

      Reply
    • Conchita Moseley
      Conchita Moseley February 7, 2015 at 7:47 am

      WE ARE WESTERNERS THERE IS GOOD AND BAD IN ALL OFF US BUT THESE PEOPLE HAVE A MENTALITY ABOVE REPROVE; IT IS THE WAY THEY LIE CHEAT AND EXPECT TO FOOL PEOPLE; right now they are killing each other; THE IS NOT HATRED OR PERSONAL . FROM THEY LANDED WE WHO KNOW KNEW THAT IT SPELT TROUBLE…… MY COMMENTS WERE REMOVED SEVERAL TIMES BECAUSE IT WAS FACTUAL AND TRUTH.

      Reply
  5. Conchita Moseley
    Conchita Moseley February 7, 2015 at 4:53 am

    We in lost nutting, two different cultures……Stupes.

    Reply
    • Joel C. Payne
      Joel C. Payne February 7, 2015 at 6:16 am

      Barbados government can’t even provide for Barbadians, how it gon start providing for others? Every project this administration takes on ends in calamity.

      Reply
    • Prince Nick
      Prince Nick February 7, 2015 at 7:31 am

      The Barbados govt is not the issue

      Reply
    • Prince Nick
      Prince Nick February 7, 2015 at 7:31 am

      It is Donna st hill who is the prob

      Reply
  6. Shaka Philosopha Miller
    Shaka Philosopha Miller February 7, 2015 at 5:39 am

    Then we wonder why we can never be taken seriously…. We as black people slash each other… Why is it that in Barbados the program won’t work, but working in t’dad? Why are Africans not welcome? Maybe we in Barbados still do behave like slaves. Maybe we still are slaves. What have we done in Barbados to prove we are still not? Why don’t we have a proper link to Africa???? Why does Trinidad has one? Is it because they are independent and we are not? Everytime Africans come here some foolishness occurs driving us apart, but we find it so appropriate to embrace the European and Chinese who just buy all our lands and demand better then we who are here….wunna betta wake up.

    Reply
    • Joel C. Payne
      Joel C. Payne February 7, 2015 at 6:31 am

      For one thing yes Trinbago acts like they independent. Their government takes action. T&T has an actuAl plAn of national development, unlike Barbados.
      They’ve taken the time to make themselves independent. Their companies take risks that Barbadian enterprises could only dream about. They bite the bullet and stop relying on UWI and developed their own University of Trinidad and Tobago with the aim of providing their nation with all of the trained individuals their nation will need. T’dad is not afraid to think outside the box either, going for head of the commonwealth, head of caricom, head of ftaa, etc. Barbados is def. not a T&t.

      Reply
    • Joel C. Payne
      Joel C. Payne February 7, 2015 at 6:31 am

      For one thing yes Trinbago acts like they independent. Their government takes action. T&T has an actuAl plAn of national development, unlike Barbados.
      They’ve taken the time to make themselves independent. Their companies take risks that Barbadian enterprises could only dream about. They bite the bullet and stop relying on UWI and developed their own University of Trinidad and Tobago with the aim of providing their nation with all of the trained individuals their nation will need. T’dad is not afraid to think outside the box either, going for head of the commonwealth, head of caricom, head of ftaa, etc. Barbados is def. not a T&t. Barbados hasn’t even evolved past the stage of monopolies. On tv station, one gas company, one phone company, one cable company, one electric company, etc. Barbados ent’ ready for big leagues. Look how the FTC in Barbados acts with utilities, bring a complaint and see how far you get. Barbados doesn’t even even have a proper regulator setup. We spoken for over a decade of getting the airport to category one status and still can’t even do that. Giving up independence and Barbados actually deciding to become a colony of the OeCS and OeCS dollar might actually bring the country up at this point, since the rest of the OeCS seems to be making gains on Barbados. When last has Barbados reassessed our tax code for the offshore sector to see how competitive it still is? Esp in relation to other competing isles. Not only all those other problems now the Supreme Court building we just build in 2009 already making people sick because it not being properly maintained? What independent people do that? Someone need to get that building’s vents cleaned. That’s to simple of an on going issue to be having.

      Reply
    • Shaka Philosopha Miller
      Shaka Philosopha Miller February 7, 2015 at 6:37 am

      We blame everything and everyone for our short comings. I am a young person who is tired of the small minds and most of all nasty minds of Bajans. Being in business in Barbados or studying to be in a job in Barbados is pointless…. We have nothing to work for due to the lack of risks we allow. No reason why we should let this issue be the way it is. The Africans coming here can open doors. Just saying
      ….but that’ll be a risk.

      Reply
  7. John Herbert
    John Herbert February 7, 2015 at 6:10 am

    This story is so confusing that you are left to wonder what is the truth!

    Somebody said the Delta State Governor pulled the plug, then somebody else said that the Barbados Government pulled the plug. Then Dr. Murray said he knows nothing about the plug being pulled, he is waiting on immigration….confusion!

    One would think that before this story, no wait, this confusion is published, the media would try to find out what is true from what is not…..but no, no, no…they ‘publish it’….things that make you go hmmmmm!!

    Reply
  8. Tony Webster February 7, 2015 at 6:11 am

    A mercy-killing…and an excellent case-study for “How not to do it”.
    All that remains is the corpse, and the question” ” Whodunnit?”
    Doan worry about the money… cause money never rusts…it just “keeps moving”.

    Reply
  9. Luisan Rogers
    Luisan Rogers February 7, 2015 at 7:27 am

    This saga was never about providing education to the Nigerians.. It was all about money, money, money! Someone somewhere profited from this whole scheme.

    Reply
  10. Linda Freeman February 7, 2015 at 7:49 am

    Why has the programme been terminated someone definitely doesn’t want the inquiry into where the money has disappeared I have figured that out, time every one realise that is the reasoning behind sending the students home and someones bank account is really looking nice with the balance of millions hmmmmm

    Reply
  11. Patricia Bowen February 7, 2015 at 8:33 am

    sometimes we need to stop seeing every issue as a black and white issue. Really this started in controversy and would probably end in controversy. I am of the opinion that you have a Nigerian arm of the Government sending students here to Barbados and Trinidad to learn simple studies that can be taught in their country or other countries that are cheaper and nearer, yet they are willing to spend nearly 10 million dollars that can be used at this time to employ soldiers from surrounding counties to help fight Boko Haram who is currently taking control of villages and towns in Nigeria and brutally killing civilians. The government seems powerless to help. That money was a waste, it did not benefit the students, our Country, The Nigerian Government. Who really benefited is the million dollar question. Can a country afford to throw away money in these times? Maybe three is more to this saga fiasco than we know.

    Reply
  12. Maxine Hutchinson February 7, 2015 at 8:54 am

    The fact that the programme has been terminated must not be interpreted to be a way out of the financial aspect being investigated by the relevant authorities. What the entire situation really tells us is that from the time of the conception of the idea to have this programme, it was not conceived with good intentions. I am sure that if the person(s) would be honest with him/her/ themselves, he/she/they would confess that the concept was founded on a premise that was not good. It goes to say that when you “start wrong” you will “end wrong”.

    The students had also picked up that negative vibration and manifested it in their bad behaviour which was later described by some of them as being founded on lies and so the entire situation would have eventually collapsed now or later. Honesty appears at times to be an uphill battle for many of us especially when millions of dollars are at stake. We lie, we walk on the heads of our mothers, he undermine innocent persons, we assassinate characters and then we go to church on Sundays, praise our gods and then return him with those said gods.

    The bottom line is this: when your thinking is deceitful the results all come out in the washing whether it be in Nigeria or Barbados or anywhere else in the world!. A word to the wise is enough. You can fool some of the people all of the time but you cannot fool all of the people all the time!

    Reply
  13. Debbie H. February 7, 2015 at 9:19 am

    We Bajans have a penchant for blaming others for our screw ups. First of all although this was not a government sponsored program they should have stepped in quickly and worked with the students and planners before our reputation got hauled thru the mud.
    The same way we send our students oversees and expect them to be treated humanely and with respect those students deserved that too. We can not just stand back and say the government had nothing to do with this because at the end of the day when it all goes to hell we ALL lose out.
    I hope now that we try to do as much damage control as possible. Find out what really went wrong, track down the missing money, investigate who got what and who got how much. This looks really bad!!!

    Reply
    • harry turnover February 7, 2015 at 1:50 pm

      ” Find out what really went wrong, track down the missing money, investigate who got what and who got how much. This looks really bad!!! ”

      If that is what you think then why say ” We Bajans have a penchant for blaming others for our screw ups.

      If you had checked and do your own research ,you would have realized that this SCAM started in Nigeria and has ABSOLUTELY nothing to do with ‘ WE BAJANS ”

      This SCAM was supposed to succeed IF the Nigerians had arrived ON TIME.

      Reply
  14. Alex Alleyne February 7, 2015 at 9:36 am

    This was expected . Very bad for the Island of Barbados in the eyes of the world . This is when a set of persons who don’t have a “clue” try to take on an internation type job that required many skills .

    Reply
  15. Winston Andrew Deane February 7, 2015 at 12:14 pm

    It never ceases to amaze me how Bajans can be so xenophobic and insular. I totally agree with Debbie H. There were apparently mistakes including how the programme was set up and with how things were handled. It seems to have been a big screw up generally but instead of trying to resolve the issues and take advantage of what could be a great opportunity to foster better relations and build cultural bridges, no one took the initiative to resolve the problems. there are similar type programmes throughout the world such as International Association for the Exchange of Technical Experience (IAESTE). On my initial point, why are many of the comments through this whole saga tend to be “Send them back, we don’t need them here!!” I bet if it was a group of white people from Spain or Greece, it would have been very different outcome.

    Reply
  16. Alec Pierre February 7, 2015 at 2:00 pm

    Right on target Jorl Payne!

    Reply
  17. Marsha Armstrong February 7, 2015 at 4:35 pm

    I think it was an excellent idea in the beginning but it seems to me that the execution was poor. What it also brought out that investors in Barbados can seriously explore the educational tourism potential our island can have in teaching the world about tourism and hospitality as well as teaching english as a foreign language to South Americans , French, Spanish and Dutch Caribbean. Barbados also needs to seriously explore an accommodation facility that can accommodate students, business people etc that are on training courses offered by local institutions and be able to benefit from such initiatives. A perfect example of such a facility is the Okinawa International Center built by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), please google is any government official is reading my comment. Come on people lets make these initiatives work for our country.. We are the most developed island in the region…think global!!!!!

    Reply
  18. Tony Waterman February 7, 2015 at 8:45 pm

    @Joel C.Payne!!!! You don’t seem to UNDERSTAND , it has Nothing to do with Building anything, this was a PRIVATE VENTURE, by Dr.Donna StHill, has nothing to do with this UNLIKED Government, except the fact that someone had to liase with some of the Government Departments like Customs, Immigration ans so on.

    @Wayne P Hoyte !!!!they did no worse that the “GAY” Bajan who came to Canada and PUBLICLY Claimed REFDUGEE STATUS by stating to the Authorities that he was being PERSECUTED in Barbados because of his SEXUAL PREFERENCE.

    @Elizabeth Jordan !!!! Not Really, some Financially? Yes, but Intelectually and Culturally ?? “NO”, AFRICANS, Disdain ( a feeling of contempt for someone or something regarded as unworthy or inferior :scorn) West Indians, theY ACCUSE us of/For Having LOST our HERTTAGE, having been told that to my Face too many times by Africans FROM VARIOUS AFRICAN cOUNTRIES. so i Don’t Really Care that much for them Either.

    @Colin A Alexander !!! Yes, they can go Fight Boko Haram

    @Conchita Moseley!!! that is BeASTRAY cause Barbadians are being led to Believe that because Africa is for all intent and Purpose our DNA Mother Country, that we should BOW to them, The Pan Africanist ALL live Here in Barbados, if the go live i NIGERIA etc they wont be PAN anything in a few weeks, i live amongs them here in CANADA and like you have said, They are not nice People and YES!!SADLY BAJANS INT GOT A CLUE BOUT NIGERIANS.
    And Yes Conchita, Bajans “CAN”T STAND THE TRUTH, and are BLINDED by the BLACKNESS. they should check how many Blacks were actually killed by the Colonialists, as against how many were and are still being killed by their own Black brothers and Sisters. and Yes, the CULTURES ours and theirs are not even in the same Ball Park.

    @Joel C. Payne!!!! I guess you were in the Toilet when Comprehension was being Taught, THIS HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE BARBADOS GOVERNMENT, AND THEY WERE NOT PROVIDING ANYHTING FREE TO THOSE AFRICANS.This was NOT a Government Project. Dr. Donna St.Hill DOES NOT work for the Government of Barbados.stop posting KAKA.

    @Prince Nick!!!! She is NOT a Problen,She saw what she thought was an Opportinity, but she CHOSE the WRONG People to Deal with.

    @Shaka Philosopha Miller!!!!Your Question”” Why is it that in Barbados the program won’t work, but working in t’dad?”” is quite Valid, but i thought that you would have figured out the Answer on your own. “”Birds of Feather, Flock together”” “”People of like minds think alike”” why is Jack Warner not in Government anymore?? Why did The PM have to FIRE so Many Ministers in so Short a span of time ?? Why did the PM only last week had to fire the AG, get the drift???Trinidadians, and Nigerians are cut from the same roll of Cloth, so they MUST/WILL Agree.

    @Marsha Armstrong !!!! which rock are you under??? how can we teach anyone about Tourism when we have systematically RUINED ours?? Hospitality!!!! What?? have you ever as a Black visitor went in a store in Bridgetown or anywhere in barbados as was treated in a PROFESSIONAL way??? i should know i have returned to Barbados for 1 Month every Year since i left Except 2014, (My Fault) and NOTHING HAS CHANGED.

    Reply
  19. kay-rani rosita February 7, 2015 at 10:32 pm

    Conchita Moseley speaks the truth

    Reply
  20. kay-rani rosita February 7, 2015 at 10:37 pm

    Poetry Dancer, we cannot work together as a race because Africans, particularly Nigerians hate Westindians whom they call slaves and say we have no culture.
    You cannot work with someone who hates you…and I mean HATE

    Reply
  21. kay-rani rosita February 7, 2015 at 10:52 pm

    Shaka, a Nigerian woman once warned me not to trust a Nigerian; she said, man, woman or child.
    So how do you embrace a Porcupine without harming yourself?

    Reply
  22. kay-rani rosita February 7, 2015 at 10:55 pm

    Shaka, can open doors from whom?

    Reply
  23. kay-rani rosita February 7, 2015 at 11:04 pm

    Tony Waterman, well said!

    Reply
  24. Andrew Jordan February 8, 2015 at 7:57 am

    Maybe this is for the best, next time something similar is done, make sure all your I’s are dotted and T’s are crossed. To much trusting going on here, without accountability it seemed (I do not have enough details). A far as the hate things go, please people, that’s a world wide thing, look at the middle east and the same Africa for starters, and we really don’t know if it played a major role in this decision, all I know is that Barbados is the one with egg on its face at the end of the day, and further erodes peoples confidence in the country. Fail to plan, plan to fail.

    Reply
  25. Roger Gibbons February 9, 2015 at 1:19 am

    Tony Waterman relax. I would like to know exactly what happened with this Nigerian saga not bits and pieces like you get when Maurice Bishop was murdered. Up to now no one can say exactly what happened. Still some jackasses every time they open their mouths talking about before the revolution.I must say can’t really blame government for this one.

    Reply

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