Caswell calls Inniss’ bluff

If president of the Unity Workers Union (UWU) Caswell Franklyn had his way, Minister of Commerce Donville Inniss would have very little to say about anything, since, in his estimation, Inniss is nothing more than “a bluffer”.

“He is not properly informed, he does not understand what is happening and he is a bluffer [but] he wants to give people the impression he knows everything [when] . . . he knows very little,” was the harsh response that Franklyn gave to some equally undiplomatic remarks made by Inniss at the weekend.

Commenting on the current delay in transitioning the Customs & Excise Department into the Barbados Revenue Authority (BRA), Inniss said in his address a customs brokers’ meeting that while BRA may be experiencing personnel and financial challenges, “what must never be allowed to rule the ultimate goal is self-serving, egotistical attitudes of a few individuals or entities whose survival depends on a membership fee”.

In a further dig at the trade union movement, the Government minister contended that the full transition into BRA must be settled, even if it meant the discomfort of a few.

“This matter with BRA is causing too much frustration among ordinary Barbadians,” the Minister of Commerce added.  However, Franklyn fired back Tuesday suggesting that he should mind his own business and keep out of matters he knew nothing about.

“He should stick to what he knows and that is nothing,” the UWU leader said.

Suggesting that Inniss’ remarks were targeted at him, Franklyn said the minister wanted to get at his union but did not want to call him by name.

He also claimed that Inniss was seeking to be the next leader of the ruling Democratic Labour Party (DLP) and wanted to give the impression that he was the only one in the DLP who could speak on “everything” and do it sensibly.

“And in so doing, he wants to get involved in everything that does not call him . . . [and] that he is not equipped to handle. He is singing to the gallery. He has this need to be the leader . . . he wants to be leader by stealth. But he talking to people who do not understand the issues. Ask him to go into depth on things he is talking about and he cannot. A few catch phrases here and a few catch phrases there and people think, ‘oh he is the best,’ but there ain’t much difference between he and [Denis] Kellman [the Minister of Housing & Lands],” the union boss added.

10 Responses to Caswell calls Inniss’ bluff

  1. Meakai February 15, 2017 at 1:28 am

    Seriously, now what would we the good people of Barbados, done to merit such harsh punishment.

    MAM on the left and Don on the right
    Assaulting eardrums morning, noon and night?
    Oh me oh my, what a disturbing sight
    The Bees and Dem mekking we

  2. Hal Austin February 15, 2017 at 4:39 am

    Caswell Franklyn, usually a well-informed public commentator, is falling in to the trap of treating Donville Inniss, an obvious brain-dead buffoon, seriously.
    By attempting to debate Inniss Mr Franklyn is giving him a level of respect he does not deserve.
    It is bad enough our newspapers taking him seriously; but when well-respected commentators start taking him seriously then, in his sick mind, he is winning. Ignore the man.

  3. Ernesta February 15, 2017 at 8:33 am

    Well said Hal. Right thinking person already have Minister Inniss analysed.

  4. seagul February 15, 2017 at 10:11 am

    My issue with these Ministries is performance related. Are they performing in a way that their mandate is being met?
    Do they have the foresight to implement measures to attract lucrative foreign companies here, and then get them to stay?
    Are they earning their keep as ministers seeing that we cant seem to figure out what successes his or her ministry is enjoying?
    What I am really getting at here is the measure of effectiveness and value that we have enjoyed a as result of these ministries.
    But Barbadians are complacent and will not act decisively in many matters choosing rather to moan, groan and complain.Do I think that there’s a wider disconnect between politics and the electorate-de people?— Of Course, many of the people hold the mainstream politicians in contempt but not enough…the majority of these agents are looting the pockets of the masses in parliamentary expenses. We have systemic failure in the Caribbean. The politicians should’ve been on trial long ago…They all accept that the masses of the people should pay for the mistakes and crimes of the rich and powerful. We need a decisive committee on these political agents–perform or immediately step down.

  5. hcalndre February 15, 2017 at 1:27 pm

    Hal, I want to ask you or anyone how come that after the “Eager 11” flare up, since then the 16 can all agree on everything, everytime that the party puts any tax or law on the table, can this be so? husband and wife disagrees at some time, brother and sister, children and parents and now the GOCB and his staff and MOF. Something tells me that the DLP is functioning on one brain cell, I think their goal is to hold on for the 2 terms to make sure of their pension.

  6. Carson C Cadogan February 15, 2017 at 3:26 pm

    Can someone please tell me how many members the Unity Workers Union (UWU) has? Half dozen? A dozen?

    Please dont count in Caswell Franklyn.

  7. Hal Austin February 15, 2017 at 5:00 pm


    Context is everything. Freundel Stuart, like most of us, is from a poor background. He admirably pulled himself up by his bootstrap, teaching, then la, then politics.
    He fell in to b prime minister by fate – the unexpected death of David Thompson.
    He likes Ilaro |Court, with is pomp and ceremony; it is a lifestyle he could only dream of. He is fully aware that the people will most likely drop this government at the next general election, given the outcome of the last when the DLP was in a stronger position.
    It is his intention to hold on to the perks of office for as long as is legally possible, therefore he is not going to upset his rebel ministers in case they walk out or cross the floor.
    His pension is already secured – as a member of parliament as as prime minister – and he will almost certainly return to practice full time if he loses his seat.
    This explains the reimbursement of the 100 per cent salary, the unnecessary and extensive overseas travelling, etc. He is milking the taxpayer.

    • Carson C Cadogan February 15, 2017 at 7:15 pm

      You Barbados Labour Party people always make me laugh.

      It is your policy to count your chickens before they are hatched.

      Sorry to burst your bubble but your party will sit out the next five years term just where they are right now. On the oppositions once again.

      They will be just like Hillary Clinton all hype and nothing more, no substance at all.

  8. Hal Austin February 15, 2017 at 5:46 pm

    10 percent

  9. sticks and stones February 15, 2017 at 8:48 pm

    Mt. Cadogan please do not insult the intelligence of people by mentioning Hilary Clinton and Mia Mottley in the same breath , Hilary Clinton was Secretary of of State of the USA and as far as any one knows Mia and Inniss are mere talking heads of political parties


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