Fight on

Having made it through by a somewhat comfortable 400 vote margin in the 2013 general election, Member of Parliament for St Philip South Adriel Braithwaite appears to have a tougher battle on his hands to retain the seat when Prime Minister Freundel Stuart finally rings the election bell.

Brathwaite polled 3,514 votes in the election to 3,114 by Anthony Wood of the Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) to help the Democratic Labour Party (DLP) secure a narrow victory.

But with the country mired in economic turmoil, voters in the constituency appear ready to rebel against the ruling party, catching Brathwaite in the potentially troublesome winds.

“I have nothing to do ever again with the DLP. I can’t have faith in you when you say no layoffs and then lay off thousands of civil servants,” said a longtime DLP supporter at Oldbury Gardens who wanted to be called George Clarke, although he made it clear it was not his real name.

“I never favoured the BLP, but they got my vote this time. I am very distraught with the DLP for the things they have done to this country.”

The state of the economy was brought up again and again, as many of the constituents struggling to make ends meet seemed bent on punishing the representative.

“I am voting again. I know who will get my vote . . . . I would not say who, but what I will say is that the measures in the Budget will send Barbados further down. We are worse off than we were 20 years ago,” another Oldbury Gardens resident, who called himself The Son of a Thousand Fathers told Barbados TODAY in a random survey of the Pulse of the People.

“I find when the BLP was in power it was better. Nothing is happening in this constituency under this Government,” added another resident who did not want to be identified, but made it clear that “I am not voting though”.

For some Brathwaite backers, like another Oldbury Gardens resident who did not wish to be identified, it was a matter of trust.

Clearly, she would rather vote for him again, but she simply did not have the zeal.

“I have not made up my mind. It is a question of trust. I can’t trust the one [party] which is in and I don’t know if I can trust the one to come. I voted Adriel Brathwaite the last time and he was not so good. I have not seen him since the last poll . . . only on TV,” complained the St Philip South constituent.

Brathwaite will have a different opponent next time around, with Wood making way for travel agency owner Indar Weir.

But Weir has tasted defeat before, having been virtually pulverized by the DLP’s Michael Lashley in St Philip North in 2013, losing by 2,179 votes in an election in which he polled 1,974 votes to 4,053 by Lashley.

Yet the BLP candidate is counting on a wave of backlash against the DLP, along with the much closer race between Brathwaite and Wood, to take him across the line in the next poll.   

Already he can virtually depend on a woman from Gemswick who preferred to be called Concerned Resident.

“Not Brathwaite,” she told Barbados TODAY when asked about her preference. “Nobody in my house [three people] voting for Brathwaite. If anything, it would be Indar Weir.”

Brathwaite will also have a tough time convincing people like the St Martins voter who called himself The Curious One to give him another chance.

Liming with some of his friends, the man said the ruling party simply did not deserve to be re-elected.

“The DLP has not done enough to deserve a third term. I favoured the DLP the last election. I came up being a DLP, but Mia is the strongest leader in Barbados now. Things will flow faster under Mia and she is the most trustworthy,” he said in reference to the BLP leader Mia Mottley.

“I have lost confidence in this Government. Too many dark shadows and veiled things going on behind the scenes and only a few white powers getting a portion of the cake. The Government has not been able to restore confidence in investors. People need a change,” he insisted.

The sentiments of a woman in a wheelchair were similar, albeit terse, simple and blunt.

“We want this Government to go. I going for the BLP,” said the woman who called herself Valerie.

Of course, it was not all gloom for Brathwaite, who will see himself as holding the advantage as the sitting parliamentarian, despite the fact that a substantial number of his backers have placed themselves in the ‘undecided’ column.

And with the DLP still commanding quite some support in the constituency despite the state of the economy, the Attorney General must think he can cross the finish line, even if he appears to be wobbling.

“I am a DLP man. I don’t care about Brathwaite, but I am a DLP man. I never voted BLP,” said a St Martin voter who wanted to be called Desmond.

And in Rices, where support for the Dees seemed strongest, one woman who called herself Granny reflected the views of several of her neighbours when she said she was a die-hard DLP supporter and she would stick with the Dems.

There was also confessed Brathwaite faithful, Lionel, who appeared unwilling to bet on his candidate, but was prepared to look at the bigger picture.

“Each side [DLP and BLP] will be certain of ten seats . . . and the other candidates will have to scramble to the end,” he predicted.

emmanueljoseph@barbadostoday.bb

8 Responses to Fight on

  1. Greengiant June 3, 2017 at 7:33 am

    Barbados Today, please tell me, from where did this title, ” Pulse of the people” arrive?

    This sounds like it was conceptualized somewhere in Roebuck Street. I was a fly on the wall, some months ago during a discussion around a domino game in Roebuck Street and I heard this theme mentioned among others to be used during the silly season. Now I searched my memory and can’t remember your staff being there. Seems that giant fly that was trying to chase me off the wall was you, but I’ve been checking the pulse of the people too. After flying out from Roebuck Street undetected and hearing how important it is to check the pulse of Barbadians at this time, I have been checking pulses by the day.

    I started in Carrington’s Village, Tweedside Road, Country Road, Hall’s Road and these surrounding districts. The people there who I checked had a strong pulse. Now I noticed the areas you are checking, and I must say you’re sticking to the plan I made with the bigger fly on the wall. We agreed that I would check from Roebuck Street outward and big fly would check from the Outer areas back towards Roebuck Street to make the report. I remember the instructions were to report only the worst pulse readings. I noticed too that you are reporting some very bad readings quite frequently, unfortunately, I’m not finding any such readings so I can’t report as yet. Seems like the further you go from Roebuck Street the weaker the pulses are. Maybe, just maybe these far out pulses are being regulated from Roebuck by the house lady. Or were you secretly instructed from where to record you pulse data?

    I’m a smart fly you see, because if the readings of the pulses are not pleasing to that big strong house lady licks will share and tables will be thrown around like the last time. I’m not a big fly, but a smart one, ” I don’t want to be around this time, I saw the last one, not pleasant at all “. So seeing that I’ll finish my checks far away, and you will complete yours nearer to Roebuck Street, i’ll have you present any findings for me, so you can face any possibility of licks, and flying tables.

    My understanding is that win or lose, the possibility of violent behavior at Roebuck Street is as high as anytime in our past as intellectually political explosives are currently being prepared in the basement.

    Reply
  2. joan Worrell June 3, 2017 at 8:07 am

    That blood pressure machine, manufactured by Roebuck Street Inc, needs new batteries. Anytime you get the same readings all the time on a blood pressure machine , the first thing you do is to change the batteries because they are false reading. I am sure that if you replace those FATLADY batteries with Eveready batteries, you will get the true pulse readings in Pressy and Santhia ridings. Don’t forget Santia won by 7 votes last time running against a weaker candidate than the one running now. Lord Have His Mercy. The BEES lick up again.

    Reply
    • Randolph June 3, 2017 at 9:52 am

      You must be living under a big rock.Bees lick up again.I will be surprise if the Dems get 2 seats.

      Reply
  3. Randolph June 3, 2017 at 9:49 am

    How can Sensible people vote for Adriel Brathwaite beats me.What has the man done in and for the people of St.Philip south?

    Reply
  4. Kevin June 3, 2017 at 9:56 am

    ………one woman who called herself Granny reflected the views of several of her neighbours when she said she was a die-hard DLP supporter and she would stick with the Dems……..

    Brathwaithe going to romp home again. Just like last election, SPS will be decided how the areas of Union, Ruby & those districts that border SPN votes. Maybe thats why the BT team did not go up those areas for interviews.

    Reply
  5. Milli Watt June 3, 2017 at 10:17 am

    Another one bites the dust…………..https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rY0WxgSXdEE

    Reply
  6. joan Worrell June 3, 2017 at 11:09 am

    Hi Randolph

    The two seats are Pressy’s and Sanita’s. lol. I know Pressy’s constituency like the back of my hands. I voted there as a young woman for Don Blackman (BLP) and then Johnny Tudor (DLP) .When I got married and moved out of the constituency, I finished with voting because both Parties have disappointed me. However I love to give Mia some stick (criticism) on the BLOGS, to make her a better leader if she ever becomes P.M. I was her senior at Q.C . Our school motto “Fiat Lux (Let there be light) is our common bond. I believe she is listening to me since she declared ” on-line” that she not supporting same-sex marriages. I don’t know what she says ”off-line” because we don’t attend the same social gatherings.

    Reply
  7. Greengiant June 3, 2017 at 5:50 pm

    The people’s pulse seems to be beating very good here. Wonder if Barbados Today ” pulse of the people team ” got a specially prepared map?

    Reply

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