AG defends heavy reliance on NIS funds

Attorney General and Minister of Home Affairs Adriel Brathwaite is defending Government’s heavy reliance on the National Insurance Scheme (NIS) for funding, saying “the NIS receives a significant return on investment”.

“It is not a free pass and it is certainly much better, probably 900 per cent better, than putting it with any commercial bank in Barbados,” said Brathwaite in response to concerns raised that contrary to the recommendation made in the 15th actuarial review, the NIS currently holds about 75 per cent of Government paper, compared to the recommended 50 per cent investment.

Just last week one of the island’s leading actuaries, Charles Herbert, cried shame on the authorities, saying the lack of transparency within the NIS was “worrying”.

“The National Insurance is our business. We must demand transparency and accountability and we must hold our representatives to account,” said Herbert , who is the founding principal of Eckler Limited.

He also warned that the social security scheme would need to undergo significant pension reform within the next decade in order to safeguard its future. Among the suggested changes was an increase in pensionable age and a hike in NIS contributions.

However, Brathwaite said while he was aware of concerns being raised about the level of NIS funding of Government, he was comforted by the fact that “if ever the NIS goes into financial difficulty it is the Government who is going to have to step up to the plate, and if you accept that then you should accept that there is no need for this red herring that people raise from time to time about the NIS investing in Government”.

The Attorney General also said he preferred to see NIS funds invested in Government and various projects on the island instead of in overseas companies that may fail “and let some person who doesn’t look like me carry away the money.

In such circumstances Brathwaite said “we don’t get much of a return on our investment”.

He was addressing the official opening of the Old Male Barracks and Gym at the Central Police Station on Monday, for which the NIS provided funding to the tune of $2.2 million in the form of investment.

While promising that a number of similar projects were in the pipeline, Brathwaite said he would welcome any future NIS investment.

Deputy Chairman of the National Insurance Board Wismar Greaves told the gathering that the NIS was pleased with the refurbishment of the Old Barrack, which is the second project the NIS has invested in under its “citizens security financial scheme”.

“We have a lot of other buildings around here that as we look around at these buildings and we see the space and the types of buildings they are we wonder if the same couldn’t be done with those buildings as occurred here.

“We are wonderfully happy with this development,” Greaves added.

52 Responses to AG defends heavy reliance on NIS funds

  1. Michelle Griffith
    Michelle Griffith October 31, 2017 at 10:23 pm

    What happened to the money that was invested in Four Seasons, how much returns did you get back on that?

  2. Mechell Springer
    Mechell Springer October 31, 2017 at 10:30 pm


  3. Juliet Marshall
    Juliet Marshall October 31, 2017 at 11:18 pm


  4. Star Wood
    Star Wood November 1, 2017 at 12:41 am

    Utter foolishness that is tax payers money wuna dipping in & having a jolly time with #unacceptable

  5. Richard Braithwaite
    Richard Braithwaite November 1, 2017 at 1:04 am

    What mess…!

  6. Mervin Phillips
    Mervin Phillips November 1, 2017 at 1:19 am

    I wonder where all of these funds are going,N.I.S funds ,B.R.A funds,income tax funds ,NSRL funds i hope not out of barbados because a lot of people may end up at Dodds.

    • Jo public November 1, 2017 at 1:53 am

      There are so many that a new wing would have to be constructed to accommodate them

    • Tricia Mondore
      Tricia Mondore November 1, 2017 at 3:03 pm

      Where? Not in Barbados, the likelihood of any of them getting arrested is zero.

  7. Stephen D Stewart
    Stephen D Stewart November 1, 2017 at 1:46 am

    Next year…..good bye DLP…..

  8. Ali Baba
    Ali Baba November 1, 2017 at 2:06 am

    where teafin is concern, wanna always defend….bunch ah goons

  9. Sheldine Dyall
    Sheldine Dyall November 1, 2017 at 4:16 am

    NIS funds turn to building funds and people cannot get they benefits.

  10. Susan Maynard
    Susan Maynard November 1, 2017 at 4:53 am

    Man u see this foolish., Them have no right puting them hands in the ppl of bdos money

    • Ali Baba
      Ali Baba November 1, 2017 at 6:51 am

      sue we sat there for 10 years and did nothing..only bout hay

  11. hcalndre November 1, 2017 at 5:05 am

    I can now understand why the PM don`t talk. The AG said that if the NIS funds go into financial difficulties the government will have to bail them out. Now, how could a man that borrows your money all the time and can only give you an IOU piece of paper to hold now that you are in trouble, how is he going to help you? The MOFailure after getting $50m from the US for some project at Enmores was asked why not invest some of the NIS funds in the US., his reply was that the US will use it for guns to kill people, but I`m sorry that Trump did not hear him, he would have to give that money back the same time. The AG ask the gathering who they would prefer to carry away the NIS money if it was invested overseas? He or someone that does not look like him, remember Clico, people. This barracks that was built at Central Police is an investment, he said, where are the dividends coming from. This is what I call the Miseducation of these people.

  12. Dennis Connell
    Dennis Connell November 1, 2017 at 5:17 am

    Why these people don’t hush up though..only mekking the tax payers more angry

  13. Angela Griffith
    Angela Griffith November 1, 2017 at 5:18 am

    And I cannot get my tax

  14. Danny Clarke
    Danny Clarke November 1, 2017 at 5:52 am

    Welcome November . One month closer to elections

  15. Lauraine Clarke
    Lauraine Clarke November 1, 2017 at 6:13 am

    Mrs Byer-Suckoo what is going on with NIS money.

  16. jrsmith November 1, 2017 at 6:13 am

    Accountability for me is the big issue, the AG seems to do nothing when it comes to his department , but all ministers in the government carries the same attitudes…………………………….
    If the AG is so positive on his lines , can he then ask the (Audit General to make public the last audited report on this department….

  17. Rawle Spooner
    Rawle Spooner November 1, 2017 at 6:17 am

    When I hear folks talk about accountability and transparency in Barbados it makes me almost gag because those two words have never been part of any politician or political party vocabulary they have never ever existed and never will.

    • Michelle Griffith
      Michelle Griffith November 1, 2017 at 8:21 am

      Rawle, I like you, good morning
      Right now Barbados need a whole new set of politicians, because this set old and worn.

    • Rawle Spooner
      Rawle Spooner November 1, 2017 at 8:52 am

      Michelle Griffith Thanks and now I’m agreeing with you Barbados needs young dynamic progressive politicians who are forward thinking not these old worn out pass expiration date clowns from all of these political parties that we have at the present time.The island needs young politicians who can see pass the tip of they noses enough of backward thinking clowns from B & D and the other fringe parties.

  18. Marva Lashley-Todd
    Marva Lashley-Todd November 1, 2017 at 6:18 am

    what are pensioners going to get when they are retired?

  19. Tony Webster November 1, 2017 at 6:27 am

    The Attorney General also said he preferred to see NIS funds invested in Government and various projects on the island instead of in overseas companies that may fail “and let some person who doesn’t look like me carry away the money.


    In such circumstances Brathwaite said “we don’t get much of a return on our investment”. DISINGENOUS and MISLEADING: It is us taxpayers who have to give back 100% of the principal to the N.I.S…..PLUS that “Better” rate of return!! Every cent coming out of our burning a**es. Usual problem at the root of such shameful situations at government properties: little or no proper, effective property management/ maintenance.
    Hmmm….$67 BIG ONES? That cud spread-around …nicely”.

  20. Greengiant November 1, 2017 at 6:45 am

    The B L P under Arthur borrowed from the N I S as well, and there was much less of a need then. People want to know what returns the N I S gets from this type of investment?

    Well we need the police, they needed a refurbished comfortable barrack in B’town so they could respond to the growing threats within our Island’s criminal underworld. There’s no better investment for our money. That’s called understanding the needs of the people and their social needs. I would wish to ask what returns we got from the millions invested at Greenland in St. Andrew? Most of you only come here to defend the B L P and D L P though, not to present historical facts on both party’s failings.

    That’s why our youth are being fooled that the only alternative is back into the dried bones bed of the B L P. I wonder daily if you adults are going to fail your children politically, like you failed them morally. Where is your memory and your brain capacity after all the money invested by the same N I S in our education over decades.

  21. Anson Sobers
    Anson Sobers November 1, 2017 at 6:47 am

    Yawl are ridiculous!!!! Government needs to stop this!!!!

  22. Antheia Springer-Williams
    Antheia Springer-Williams November 1, 2017 at 6:48 am

    Leave de people left hand, right hand and centre hand nis funds! It’s not theirs to do with as they wish.

  23. Greengiant November 1, 2017 at 7:22 am

    Where do you all think the money came from to build some of the schools we have in this country? I’m not saying it’s right to use it for every purpose, but sometimes it’s a worthy local investment. The money has to be repaid, it’s not given away, and it’s the very working people who have to repay it.

    Think about this then as an example. Workers go to work, they get paid, their P A Y E, N I S contributions, and Income Tax is deducted and paid into the treasury. These same payments, plus V A T from purchases made by the same money earned is added and our wages and salaries are paid for another week. The same money from our salaries and wages is spent for goods and services from the private sector to pay their workers as well. That’s the cycle.

    So when workers go to work and waste time, drop out with uncalled for sick days, leave work early and other practices that reduce production, the cost of doing business increases, when that cost increases our taxes must increase to meet the increased cost. So we are the system, we are the pay masters, we are the treasury, we are the employers of ourselves, we are the voters, and most importantly we are the economy.

    If we continue to make bad spending choices, then we too are poor investors, not just the politicians. We have to make the right choices when we go to work, when we drive on our roads as the accidents and treatment have a cost to it that we have to pay for. The criminal element in this country who only pays V A T on purchases contributes less than the average worker, but the drugs they sell, the gun shot injuries, the funerals, the incarceration at Dodds, the police work and court cost actually cost us more to support their habits and life styles than their contribution to the treasury. That’s the load of this economy, yet we only look at the elected politicians and not ourselves and those around us. We really need an education on social responsibility.

    Any candidate, accountant, auditor, business leader who does not address the points I have mentioned has no interest in education the masses to help them understand and improve their lives. There are only about partisan politics and political power from which they will benefit.

    We with a higher level of education have to start educating those who are less educated instead of looking down on them. We have to accept them for who they are, encourage them, and give them the confidence to trust us without political motive. Too many of us are selling the less educated for a few pieces of silver. In this century where is our mirror image? Who’s purpose do we serve?

    • Randolph November 1, 2017 at 7:46 am

      Green giant you seem to be living under a rock.A lot of money has been stolen from NIS.Wake up man.

  24. Hugh Roberta Ferguson
    Hugh Roberta Ferguson November 1, 2017 at 7:26 am

    Above the law tiefing Barbadians ‘ PENSIONS & BENEFITS”….

  25. Randolph November 1, 2017 at 7:36 am

    This Government will have a lot to answer that is why they are very afraid of losing the next election.

  26. Joy Waldron
    Joy Waldron November 1, 2017 at 7:42 am

    Hmmm ppl giving DEM money to hold for sickness death or disability and them spend it big living large and ppl suffering …hnmm DEM gotta go

  27. Caroline Clarke
    Caroline Clarke November 1, 2017 at 7:53 am

    Spending our NIS money by the millions but when you are sick ,injured on your job or laid off you have to wait a year for them to calculate them formula to give you a pittance like you begging for a handout .it’s our money that is taken out before we even see our pay packages

  28. Caroline Clarke
    Caroline Clarke November 1, 2017 at 7:54 am

    Them can rely on it but we can’t

  29. Patrick Cozier
    Patrick Cozier November 1, 2017 at 8:17 am

    NIS funds do not belong to the Govt but are held ‘in trust’ for the meeting of present and future benefits for the citizens who have contributed thereto.

  30. Michelle Griffith
    Michelle Griffith November 1, 2017 at 8:36 am

    All people don’t get your panties in a bunch, anyone remember the money that was spent on the Gems project, I keep telling you all half a dozen and six is the same thing.
    DLP, BLP the same thing,all have squander the NIS funds.

    • Jennifer Phillips
      Jennifer Phillips November 1, 2017 at 10:46 am

      I hope you dont ever get sick

    • Michelle Griffith
      Michelle Griffith November 1, 2017 at 10:49 am

      Jennifer Phillips what’s you point, have you read to understand what I have really said.
      We talking about NIS money being squander, and you talking about you hope I never get sick.
      GO READ.

    • Peter Thompson November 1, 2017 at 12:53 pm

      This is your pension that he is putting in peril… the paper that he is giving the NIS for their investment is rated as “junk;” does that “get your panties in a bunch?”

  31. Wayne R. Pilgrim-Cadogan
    Wayne R. Pilgrim-Cadogan November 1, 2017 at 9:31 am

    What the people want you to do is concentrate on solving the country crime woes and let the other Ministers deal with their own Ministry problems! Your problems are of the greatest concerns to the public at this time and need serious addressing rather than sugar coating the solutions.

  32. Peter Thompson November 1, 2017 at 12:08 pm

    How can the AG be so totally clueless?? He thinks it’s a good idea to destabilize the entire National Insurance investment portfolio and put everyone’s pension in danger for what reason?

  33. Veroniva Boyce
    Veroniva Boyce November 1, 2017 at 12:32 pm

    Got no shame!

  34. Sherlene Phillips
    Sherlene Phillips November 1, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    So scary…NIS money should be invested in low risk ventures….i think the government is high risk.

  35. F.A.Rudder November 1, 2017 at 3:19 pm

    Honorable AG! It is the people’s business to look into the manner in which their national insurance contributions are being trusted. Any divergent pattern in the standard operation procedures of the intent without clear understanding or transparency could be a conflict of interest to the nations manpower. The nation honor’s you with upholding these good principales that the NIS has documented at its inception. Your honorable service to the nation is respected.

  36. Belfast November 1, 2017 at 3:20 pm

    What happened to the loan to the non-profit making, taxpayers albatross Transport Board to pay out the workers it had made redundant?
    Mash Up Barbados, Unlimited

  37. Thunder November 1, 2017 at 5:29 pm

    The prime minister always have people doing his dirty work,they had no right touching our funds in the first place,now he has the nerve to talk about increasing pension age and N.I.S contributions, this government, is guilty of mismanagement of funds from day one.
    What is the sense of taking out N.I.S contributions to secure your future,and when you need it the funds are not there because the government, already use it,who will make sure they replace what they have taken? this is why I say vote them out!

  38. Greengiant November 1, 2017 at 6:01 pm

    @Randolph: When, where and by who has this money been stolen from N I S? Money has gone missing from the Police, Registrar, N I S, licensing authority, several other departments and even recently the psychiatric hospital. Other than that you will have to enlighten me.

    I can understand money being mismanaged, but stolen, I know not what you speak off. I don’t do gossip, slander or cheap political talk. I only deal with facts. My pen or fingers won’t be used as an instrument of propaganda for either the B L P or
    D L P.

  39. Suezette Boyce-Griffith
    Suezette Boyce-Griffith November 1, 2017 at 6:25 pm

    I want everyone of dem to show dem bank accounts who aint got guest houses got apartment boats yachts and lots more but i tell ya God is watching dem and he will move all of dem in his time cppl are suffering too much

  40. andy g November 1, 2017 at 8:25 pm

    Barbados took sick with the death of Barrow and Adams.Richie tried to rescue it, and sandy choked Richie,and so b’dos never recover.Aparts from buildings ,Barbados has retard.These two parties has outlive their time,still the ites wont think outside the party line.I guess most of you will be to young to know the speed of which Barbados progress from the sixties to early eighties.Cant see why anyone over sixty still supporting these two parties.parties of the past

  41. Belfast November 1, 2017 at 9:25 pm

    Where has the money gone from the sale of Government Saving Bonds, and how are the proceeds from the sale of these bond invested?
    Another CLICO, Trade Confirmers, NIS in the making.
    ……..Barbados Cock up Incorporated……

  42. Loretta Griffith November 1, 2017 at 10:30 pm

    I keep hearing persons complain of not received their NIS benefits, be it sickness, unemployment and pensions.
    Fortunately or unfortunately, I have always received my sickness benefits on time and now that I am being pensioned, I do not have a problem with receiving my pension. I receive it PRONTO.
    This makes me question if there is not more to the problems of those who are experiencing problems.
    Barbados is in need of a drastic shakeup. Who will have the political will to do it, only God knows?
    Let’s continue to pray for our country.


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