BLP shocked by Grant’s defection

Community worker Rodney Grant has found himself at the centre of a storm of controversy over his announced intention to contest the next general election on a Democratic Labour Party (DLP) ticket.

Grant has said he planned to seek the nomination as the DLP flag bearer in St Michael South East to challenge the incumbent Santia Bradshaw of the Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) in the poll constitutionally due in 2018.

However, news of this has stunned officials from both parties, with members of the BLP scratching their heads in disbelief.

They pointed out that as recently as two weeks ago the community activist was actively engaged in the business of the party.

“I cannot believe that Grant is seeking the nomination in St Michael South East on a DLP ticket since he chaired my party’s social policy committee up to two weeks ago. I do not understand what is going on,” one BLP Member of Parliament told Barbados TODAY this week.

“Yes, Grant did sit on the social policy committee of the BLP and on some occasions chaired meetings. I do not understand why he did it. I will be addressing this defection at the appropriate time. I will hold my peace at this juncture,” another Opposition MP stated.

Both parliamentarians asked not to be identified.

A video circulating on social media shows Grant chairing the BLP’s “People’s Assembly” on February 2, 2014 at Springer Memorial School on Government Hill, St Michael.

Grant yesterday refused to comment on the stir, telling Barbados TODAY, “I do not want to be drawn into that at this time”.

However, in an interview with Barbados TODAY last week, Grant, a close friend of former Minister of Social Transformation Hamilton Lashley, defended his decision to seek the DLP nomination.

Like Lashley, Grant was intimately involved with the DLP before switching allegiance to the then governing BLP. Lashley later jumped back to the DLP after it won the 2008 election.

“People can identify me with anything. I mean that is their right and it is also my right to determine where I want to go. But then Hamilton Lashley was a Dee [member of the DLP], he was also a Bee [member of the BLP] and now he is a Dee again. Lashley was a person of the people. Lashley knew he had to go into one of the two political parties to represent the people and whether it was the Dee or Bee it really did not matter to him.

“We have to move away from this partisan type of politics. At the end of the day, it is about representation, good representation. As I have always said people go into politics for different reasons. Some people enter politics to be ministers of Government so that they can benefit from all that goes with the office. Other people enter politics because they want to represent people and they know what representation is all about. I believe I know what representation is all about,” Grant said.

Meantime, banker Patrick Tannis, who Grant is trying to replace as the candidate, refused to be drawn into discussion on the controversy.

Tannis, who lost to the BLP’s Santia Bradshaw by ten votes in the 2013 election, remained the party’s caretaker for the constituency, DLP officials said.

“Controversies such as this are not in the interest of the constituents of St Michael South East. I prefer to steer clear
of the controversy.

“I have known Grant and his family for a considerable length of time and I have always found them to be respectable members of the Pine community. Many of them have left the community but I still consider them respectable persons. I cannot concentrate on this controversy since the people of St Michael South East need representation at this time,” he told Barbados TODAY.

Despite the interest shown by Grant, however, Tannis appears set to get the nod again, according to a member of the executive committee of the constituency branch who was confident that Grant would be outvoted when the branch meets to select its candidate.

12 Responses to BLP shocked by Grant’s defection

  1. Sheldine Dyall
    Sheldine Dyall February 13, 2016 at 6:07 am

    Why this man is La right hand.

  2. Pamalea Payne
    Pamalea Payne February 13, 2016 at 7:12 am

    Man do what yah want to them does do to please them self

  3. Tête La
    Tête La February 13, 2016 at 7:16 am

    If they want to preserve the current blp candidate and representative of that constituency for a political future, you better shift her to somewhere else, because this is going to be a wash off. If Tannis had her struggling with 10 votes, I can see Grant tearing the bark off her and riping nothing but holes in her…

  4. Lilian Llyod
    Lilian Llyod February 13, 2016 at 8:23 am
  5. Lilian Llyod
    Lilian Llyod February 13, 2016 at 8:24 am

    Time Will Tell

  6. Bernard Codrington. February 13, 2016 at 11:42 am

    That is the politics of inclusion! Both DLP and BLP must be aware of opportunist who skip from party to party. It seems a little self serving to me.

  7. Tony Waterman February 13, 2016 at 1:11 pm

    Why is there shock about this type of Betrayal in 2016, was C Edwy Talma not a Minister in EVERY Government when he was in Politics back in the Day???? what’s new Today ???? get over it and move on, this is NOT the First, and will definitely not be the last, he is just doing the Hammie.

  8. Tony Waterman February 13, 2016 at 1:17 pm

    If we had our own style of Electing people instead of Parties this could/would never happen, the westminister/Whitehall style of Government. that we elected to Retain after supposedly being INDEPENDENT of it, is to blame.

    we want reparations for Slavery, but we want to keep the style of Government that made us Slaves in the first place, Ouch Ouch it hurts.

    I often wonder did Education really do anything for us ???

  9. E. Jerome davis February 13, 2016 at 2:15 pm

    I think it is just a matter of looking for the opportunity to run in that constituency. He would not have that opportunity in the BLP.

  10. BaJan boy February 13, 2016 at 4:32 pm

    You are absolutely correct Jerome. True saying the apple don’t fall far from the tree. Another Hammie LaLa

  11. jrsmith February 14, 2016 at 1:30 pm

    For whats its worth, nothing will change, its a two party system, as a voting democracy.. for me the political infrastructure, of Barbados is way too large, for an island as small as Barbados, which is very, very ,non productive, as person to people… what do they really do..
    We need to restructure politically, for now in this 21st and beyond, must say so is , most of the world, politics and the capitalist system, has failed most of the people in the world…

  12. Panwallie February 17, 2016 at 1:23 am

    He is not the first, probably will not be the last. All he has done is to continue in the footsteps of his friend Hammy in the leapfrog game.


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