Finance Minister Chris Sinckler has accused the Barbados Labour Party (BLP of starting a smear attack against him and fellow Cabinet Minister, Michael Lashley, that he said was part of an ongoing campaign by the Opposition to win the government.
Addressing a Democratic Labour Party City branch meeting at the Wesley Hall Junior School last evening, Sinckler accused BLP members and supporters of putting out fake news about him and Lashley because he said the two are regarded as difficult to move from office.
“There are certain people that they have identified that they feel stand in the way of them getting government, and I am one of them. So, they have started this campaign against me and Michael Lashley,” he said, adding, “this is a ‘Get Chris campaign'”.
Without identifying a specific item of false news, Sinckler said, “they [BLP activists] intend to put out a lot of fake news, nasty lying information, starting in other places outside of Barbados and migrating into the mainstream social in Barbados … trying their best to link me and other members of the Democratic Labour Party to criminal activities”.
“It’s going to get worse. This is not the only thing. They’re going to put out other stuff too …They want to undermine public confidence and trust in people,” he said.
The St Michael North West Member of Parliament told branch members of the City, where newcomer Henderson Williams is the DLP candidate, that the BLP has been in campaign mode since losing the 2008 poll and warned his party faithful to expect unusual tactics as the elections that are constitutionally due in 2018 draw closer.
“This is going to be easily the nastiest campaign that would ever be fought in Barbados.It can unnerve people when you see the extent to which some of these Labour Party people will go to secure political office,” he said.
Sinckler cited some USA election tactics used against Democratic Party Candidate Hillary Clinton in that country’s 2016 election campaign, and current emerging allegations of dirty tricks used against her, and said “that is the mode of attack which we are beginning to see right here in Barbados… and they’ve started”.
Sinckler said he will remain convinced that the unspecified fake news tactics are devised by the BLP unless proven otherwise.
“It may not come directly out of Roebuck Street [BLP headquarters], but it is being perpetrated by their operatives who are working to destroy people’s characters in Barbados because they know that there is a feeding frenzy for accusations and allegations against people in Barbados.”
Sinckler recalled what he said was an allegation levelled against him in the past, and warned that he stands ready to make persons similarly pay for peddling the current unspecified fake news whenever the opportunity arises.
“A couple years ago they put out a video supposedly of me involved in some sexual act with some woman.
“I didn’t pay it much mind as I am not paying this other thing much mind either, but fortunately for me the right person said that [in] the wrong place at the right time. So, a local media house made my lawyers a little bit richer than they ought to have been. They also gave me some money that I didn’t have to work for.”
“I know eventually somebody is going to say it,” he said confidently.
“And trust me the hammer is going to come down on them that they are not going to even believe that they are alive.
“If the court awards a dollar I am not prepared to accept 99 cents. I want every cent out of them because this nastiness and this insidiousness has to stop.”