This year’s Financial Statement and Budgetary Proposals have carved out a path of growth for the island’s economy.
So said St. Philip North MP, Michael Lashley, made this observation yesterday while speaking in the House of Assembly.
Lashley, who is the Minister of Transport and Works, told Parliament that the Opposition had wrongly anticipated that Minister of Finance, Chris Sinckler, would have imposed severe hardships on the people in his Budget.
“They expected the removal of social welfare programmes. These social welfare programmes impact mainly on the poor in the community. The same poor people that they dress up in red T-shirts to run up and down the country to say “Things Dread We voting Red”. They were walking about saying that VAT would be increased. That is what their supporters were saying. I cannot believe an opposition party could be so thirsty for power after only six months,” Lashley noted.
He asked how the people of Barbados could return to the Barbados Labour Party to power while it is shattered as evidenced in the High Court case between fellow MPs Edmund Hinkson and George Payne.
Lashley charged that over the past six years every welfare programme that promoted the interest of the poor has been criticised by members of the Barbados Labour Party.
“The St. Joseph MP criticised the constituency councils, but here we have a mechanism which allows community practitioners, ordinary people, to assist in the distribution of resources in the community. But the parliamentary representative for St. Joseph can get up and criticise a revolutionary mechanism. What is wrong with a lady from Bayfield or St. Martins going to the constituency council and accessing assistance. What is wrong with that? What is wrong with the councils? What is wrong with the constituency council assisting a household with the payment of utility bills?” Lashley asked.
Lashley disclosed that he has met members of the opposition who were supportive of the constituency councils and have expressed an interest in assisting the officials in their work.