Don’t let ‘Dem’ fool you

Describing Government’s 2016/2017 Estimates of Revenue and Expenditure as being riddled with errors and based on false assumptions, Opposition Leader Mia Mottley said this afternoon that its contents reflected a political illusion of stability.

In her two-hour reply to Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler, who led off debate on the measure in the House of Assembly this morning, Mottley launched a blistering attack on Sinckler’s account of Government’s fiscal deficit.

“You can’t tell me you are going to spend $4.239 billion this year and that you are going to raise $2.668 billion in revenue. The difference is $1.57 billion. If you take out amortization for this year of a billion and six [dollars] yuh leff with $564 million; and if you take $564 million and divide it by the GDP of $8.921, what is the miraculous figure that comes up? And children in primary school with a calculator can do this [calculation and get] . . . 6.3 per cent. But this Minister come in here today and tells us the deficit is going to be 4.2 [per cent],” Mottley argued.

However, she insisted that the deficit would exceed 6.3 per cent.

Mottley also accused the Minister of Finance of using a new method of measuring the deficit in the hope hoodwinking Barbadians.

“Now I say to you that our comments in relation to these Estimates stand; and year after year we have come to this honourable Chamber since 2008; we said that the projections were overly optimistic and go beyond the bounds of what is acceptable . . . and in fact, what ends up happening, is that the deficit ends up ballooning because the expenditure was not cut to suit realistic revenue,” she charged.

The leader of the Opposition said for the first time in this country’s history, it was now faced with “an unacceptable situation” in terms  of its current account deficit. which puts it in a position where it is unable to see growth.

Mottley accused Government of accumulating more debt than the former BLP administration did in 14 years, noting that this had developed partly due to accumulated deficits.

She argued that in 2008, 2009 and 2011 Government over-estimated revenue by 22 per cent; adding that last year there was a further  over-estimation in the order of 15 per cent and again this year in the amount of 22.9 per cent.

She also said that in 2008, while Government had said it would raise $2.694 billion, it had achieved $130 million less; in 2009, it also fell short by $290,000; in 2010 by $100 million and in 2012, “when it had the least generous projection for February and March,” the administration missed the target by $56 million.

She also poured cold water on Government’s revenue targets for the current fiscal year, asking: “What has happened in the Barbados economy in February and March of this year that is so uniquely different that will cause this Government to raise that kind of money in these two months?”

Mottley claimed that because of the series of taxes imposed on the country since 2008, the average Barbadian family was now $8,000 worse off.

She attacked the Government for cutting its welfare allocation for 2016/2017 and was especially critical of its plan to increase the vote given to the Immigration Department this year to facilitate the fingerprinting of nationals entering and leaving the island.

While arguing that the current regulations specifically targeted persons under suspicion,  the Opposition Leader questioned whether Government planned to deport its citizens who refuse to be fingerprinted on their return home.

Warning that this matter could be tested in court, she advised the Government to pull back on its plan to fingerprint Barbadians, saying the Opposition would support the change.

7 Responses to Don’t let ‘Dem’ fool you

  1. Sunshine Sunny Shine March 15, 2016 at 5:48 am

    There is just great difficulty these days in knowing what to believe when a politician is telling you that you can believe. There is enough evidence provided by the finance minister that his budget speeches must be taken with a pinch of salt. I am not one to agree with Mia Mottley on anything, as my opinion of her is not so flattering, however, one can refute her rebuttal to the budget speech. It shows clearly the misleading information provided by the minister of finance as he seeks again to paint a bed roses while telling you that the roses are all dried up.

    • harry turnover March 15, 2016 at 6:27 am

      Don.t understand what you are saying in your last 4 lines beginning with…” I am not one…..

      • Sunshine Sunny Shine March 15, 2016 at 2:46 pm

        I am sorry, that should have read

        …however, one cannot refute her rebuttal to the budget speech.

  2. Carson C Cadogan March 15, 2016 at 7:24 am

    A “Brilliant” presentation by Mia Mottley, full of sound and fury , signifying nothing nothing at all.

    Mia Mottley is wonderful at opposing everything under the sun. As far as she is concerned nothing is any good in Barbados.

    She is more hilarious than Laurel and Hardy.

    • Sunshine Sunny Shine March 15, 2016 at 2:55 pm

      Are you a yardfowl or just plain blind? What good is the government doing that anyone can speak about them positively? You gauge yet the temperament of the people towards these DLP pretenders? The people are blue till turning green. Mottley is the better of two bads right now because she is not the government in power.

  3. Tony Webster March 15, 2016 at 10:00 am

    @Carson…your Laurels ain’t funny either…just “predictable”…and as blasé and boring as scratch-grain…Sir!

  4. Carson C Cadogan March 15, 2016 at 6:06 pm

    The Barbados Labour Party ought to be tired by now. Eight loooooooong years of DOOM AND GLOOM, according to them the economy was going to collapse since 2008, the IMF was about to rule Barbados.

    MIA AMOR MOTTLEY up and down Barbados with her fear-mongering, scaremongering, being totally ignored by all and sundry except Barbados Labour Party members and supporters.

    Does she not get tired being wrong all the time? Absolutely none of her “predictions” about Barbados and its economy have materialized. Yet she carries on with her posturings month after month.

    What I would like her to speak about, and she has been strangely silent on this matter, is whether or not she has a Law Certificate. My understanding is that to be considered to be a Lawyer in Barbados one must have a Law Certificate. She was challenged in Parliament during the last Budget debate, by the Hon. Dr. Lowe to present her Law qualifications in the House as he had done with his qualifications. It is almost a year later and nary a word from her on that matter.

    The next Budget debate is just around the corner will she produce her qualifications in Parliament before then?


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