Opposition Leader Mia Mottley has rubbished the 2015/2016 budget, saying it was nothing but “torture” from a Government which has continued to punish the people of Barbados for its own failure to get it right.
As she began her reply just after 4 p.m, Mottley told the House if it weren’t for the pain inflicted on Barbadians in the financial package there would be nothing to comment on.
“This budget will be better remembered for the things it did not say than the things it said.”
She argued that Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler succeeded in “surpassing the 2008 budget ‘grab and drag’ from the people of Barbados with another 200 million dollars in taxation.
“A people who are already tax fatigued to the point of despair. 200 million dollars in taxes coming at a time when people are not in a state to accommodate any further extraction from their pockets, and it was done with a spirit of callousness. While he patted himself on the back with one hand, the other hand was deep in your pocket taking out money by stealth.”
The Barbados Labour Party leader described the budget as the sixth failed attempt to stabilize the economy, insisting that Sinckler failed to present strategies to encourage growth, generate new jobs and provide relief for the vulnerable.
“This minister yesterday asked you to pay more to eat, this minister asked you to pay more to drink milk and to drink juice. This minister asked you to pay more to live in your house. …This minister glories yesterday in the fact that if anybody owes any back taxes they will not be allowed to work in Barbados to pay off any back taxes in the absence of a tax clearance certificate.”
Mottley added that the budget was further proof that the ruling Democratic Labour Party administration was not fit to govern.