They’re simply heartless, says Hammie-La

Former parliamentarian Hamilton Hammie-La Lashley has led a scathing attack on commercial banks in the wake of the latest announcement that they are to slash interest rates on savings to close to zero per cent.

The former Minister of Social Transformation painted the banks as heartless, stopping just short of calling on Barbadians to boycott them.

He cited as an example, the eviction in November 2016 of businesswoman Anne Riley-Fox following a two-year battle with CIBC FirstCaribbean International Bank.

“I have a serious concern with how the commercial banks in this country are dealing with poor people and customers, particularly those people who take out a mortgage with them.

“The kind of heartless approach that is taken by the bank towards her . . . in relation to the repayment of their mortgage is something that must be checked into,” Lashley told Barbados TODAY.

With warrant in hand, court marshals last November enforced an eviction order issued by the High Court, after Riley-Fox, 63, lost the battle to keep her Fairview Heights, St George home of 36 years.

The former Moods & Options stores owner had been unable to pay the mortgage after her business folded in 2012.

A pressure group, Fairness in Action Committee raised the asking price of approximately $750,000 and offered to purchase the house on Riley-Fox’s behalf.

However, in a letter dated December 7, 2016, the bank, through its attorneys Hastings Attorney-at-law, replied “it cannot at this stage entertain your offer”.

An outraged Lashley described its response as “an insult”.

“It is an insult to Barbadians, it’s hurtful that a woman who has contributed so much to Barbados  . . . would be treated this way,” he said.

The social activist said it was time the authorities reestablish an indigenous bank to serve the needs of Barbadians.

In the meantime, he recommended that every Barbadian should seriously consider taking their business to local credit unions.

“We have to be more nationalistic and call for our own Barbadian bank, and it is also suggested that we take more pride in our credit union which is the only financial institution that Barbadians own.

“Barbadians really need to re-examine when they are going for mortgage and who they are taking this mortgage with, and I’m suggesting to more Barbadians because of the crude approach and the crude dispensation of customer care, instead of going to the commercials banks, go to the credit unions in Barbados,” he stressed.

18 Responses to They’re simply heartless, says Hammie-La

  1. Angus Benn
    Angus Benn January 18, 2017 at 2:33 am

    BAJAN don’t know how to boycott.

  2. Jan Hold
    Jan Hold January 18, 2017 at 4:38 am

    Am all for that boycott but bajans need to wake up. In St Vincent the other think it was Rbtt or RBC take up they rates the ppl of that country take out they $$ I love that the ppl ha not them just going run they mouth they need more than boycott they need us more than we need them without our Moniesssss they can’t make a cent

  3. Sheldine Dyall
    Sheldine Dyall January 18, 2017 at 4:49 am

    What about the DLP

    • Sharon Taylor
      Sharon Taylor January 18, 2017 at 5:48 am

      What? They running the banks now? They mek wunna put wunna money in banks too? Wonder if everybody does blame them if when they go to crap and d crap hard! Hmmmmmm

    • Danny Colombian Clarke
      Danny Colombian Clarke January 18, 2017 at 6:18 am

      Sharon they are the ones who opened the door by allowing the banks to dictate their own interest rate instead of a fixed rate so YES they are responsible . Get the facts

    • Sharon Taylor
      Sharon Taylor January 18, 2017 at 6:31 am

      Danny Colombian Clarke don’t care what door was opened managers have a right to take their customers into consideration… So we gine be keeping our monies at these banks, who charge for going to the counter, any statement or info a customer personally requests printed, but they pay us a meagre interest…. Wa basically we will be paying them to keep our money….. When we play the blame game we lose sight of everything… So basically what u said is that since the BLP removed price control it is the BLP that got things so hard in Barbados, got d merchants robbing we blind? Or dont u think the merchants can just take a $100 percent profit and feel good, instead of the 2,3 and 4 hundred percent profit that most merchants charge! Every gov has done something stupid during their tenure… That doesn’t mean we as a ppl shouldn’t have a conscience! Keep up the blaming game… It will get us very far as a ppl… All talk and no action… We too foolish…

    • Danny Colombian Clarke
      Danny Colombian Clarke January 18, 2017 at 6:46 am

      I agree with you there Sharon that end of day it’s in their power to treat us better . Instead they now even charge us for keeping our money (if under a certain amount ) and now even between $1 – $2 for withdrawal at a teller . Highway robbery . End of day it’s our choice . Maybe try the credit unions . They are a bit more friendly . However the fact that the Central Bank gave them more freedom can’t be overlooked .

  4. John Herbert
    John Herbert January 18, 2017 at 5:43 am

    What purpose does a bank serve, anybody knows?

    • Sharon Taylor
      Sharon Taylor January 18, 2017 at 5:46 am

      The banks make huge amounts of profits… Somebody else gotta give u the other purposes!

    • John Herbert
      John Herbert January 18, 2017 at 5:53 am

      I think if we can really understand the reason a bank exist, then we can have a meaningful discussion on when a decision is made whether or not it is ‘heartless’. Maybe somebody in banking can help

  5. Sharon Taylor
    Sharon Taylor January 18, 2017 at 5:54 am

    We r a laid back, run we mouths a lot, mind other ppl business and would go all out of our way to pull down a person ppl! To really come together and act nah…. We too busy blamimg d DLP… We talking bout dem foolish, we just as foolish as them! Interest rates are there to draw customers, but when ya got enough customers and ya profits sky rocketting ya could do as ya like! If only half of their customers go take out their money ya would see how fast d banks give back d lil end a interest!

  6. BaJan boy January 18, 2017 at 7:17 am

    This is a classic example of what will happen if we continue to privatize the institutions which are there to serve the people. The minute the Govenor of the Central bank gave banks permission to fix their own interest rates they have been falling whilst the interest on loans and credit cards went up. Even the rates on mortgages whichme are no longer fixed for the life of the mortgage can sky rocket after the period has ended. This Govenor and Minister have been bought and have sold out our country. The Minsiter said if there is a devaluation he would resign,I don’t think he should wait until he causes that. If he really cares about Barbados and Barbadians he would do the decent thing and go before the devaluation happens. Tell Frendel to care for a change and call an election.The only way out is if the DLP is out so the people are calling now.

  7. BaJan boy January 18, 2017 at 7:48 am

    Hammie the DLP that you run back to after they won a government are not not only heartless they are also care-less,shameless,clueless,worthless,and have us pennyless..

  8. Mariam Makeba
    Mariam Makeba January 18, 2017 at 9:46 am

    Wunna got to ask wunna self who dem got it line up for

  9. Taleta Seales January 18, 2017 at 9:58 am

    Well said Mr Lashley. I agree with all you said. Bajans need to wake up and put an end to these institutions that trying to “Juck out we eyes”. Learn to love their own and support they own. CREDIT UNION ALL THE WAY!

  10. Dennis Connell
    Dennis Connell January 18, 2017 at 10:39 am

    Uh tell wunna tek wunna damn money put it in a ovaltine tot and bury it tuh ramgoat

  11. Renee January 18, 2017 at 11:06 am

    wow, heartless says hammie, really, but I guess you would know what it is to be heartless!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  12. sam clarke January 18, 2017 at 11:42 am

    On this i agree with with Hammy. It is time to take your money to the local credit unions. It is time to stop banking with these banks who charges you to keep your money there, then refuses you loans or charged them at exorbitant interest rate.
    They have no interest in the consumer, they are nothing more than glorified loan sharks.


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