Allegations of phone tapping will be high on the agenda when the ruling Democratic Labour Party (DLP) holds its 62nd annual conference next month.
“The party conference will be calling on the Office of the Attorney General to investigate allegations of phone tapping under the last administration and determine if there was such abuse of power during the last administration,” DLP General Secretary George Pilgrim announced at a news conference Monday afternoon.
“I have also acknowledged the resolution coming for a call for the Office of the Attorney General to make clear for Barbadians, the legality of having a legal certificate to practise law. And that resolution we know is going to be highly debated in terms of the concerns that we have heard in other domains with respect to the holding of this legal certificate and the importance of it,” Pilgrim said in a clear reference to recently raised questions about Opposition Leader Mia Mottley’s qualification to practise law in Barbados.
Minister of the Environment Dr Denis Lowe had openly challenged Mottley to “bring proof” that she was qualified to practise law here.
During last month’s Budget debate, Mottley attempted to clear the air on her qualification holding up a set of personal documents, which she made a record of the House, to prove she was an attorney-at-law of good repute. However, this has not quelled public concerns about Mottley’s qualifications.
Giving a further preview of the upcoming conference, Pilgrim said party President and Prime Minister Freundel Stuart will also address a number of issues of national importance, such as rising gun violence in the wake of 20 murders recorded here so far this year, including 16 in which firearms were used.
Pilgrim said tribute will also be paid to former Governor General Sir Elliott Belgrave, who retired at the end of June, and congratulations offered to Sir Phillip Greaves who has succeeded him as acting head of state.
Various Government ministers, including Minister of Education Ronald Jones, Minister of Finance Chris Sinckler and Minister of Agriculture and Water Resource Management Dr David Estwick are also to be lauded for their contributions to the ruling DLP.
“I think Barbadians should appreciate that this Government has really made the effort to ensure that this country stays focused and afloat. Barbados is not broken, we are open for business,” Pilgrim assured.
The conference, which will be held under the theme, Barbados First, will open on Thursday, August 17 at the party’s George Street, Belleville, St Michael headquarters. It was break the next day to make way for the opening of the Caribbean Festival of Arts, CARIFESTA 13, and resumes on Saturday, August 19, before concluding the following day.
Pleading for greater support of the conference this year, Jones, the conference chairman, said while there had always been very good support of the annual conference, the attendance could be better.
“These events are very well attended and we want to see even more or better attendance than previous occasions,”Jones said.
Acknowledging that the country was approaching general elections, Jones said too many people continued to put themselves first instead of the country.
The three-day event, which will see a number of young people across the island being honoured, will be streamed live.
During Monday’s news conference Pilgrim also launched the DLP’s annual conference publication, which details the party’s policy journey since 2008.
Pilgrim said the publication, which will be made available online and on the opening day of the conference, would also put to rest any doubt in the minds of citizens about how Government was spending taxpayers’ money.