Government Senator Jepter Ince is confident that having provided the blueprint for the development of Barbados, the incumbent Democratic Labour Party (DLP) will be returned to office whenever general elections are called.
Ince made this bold prediction today while speaking at DLP’s lunchtime lecture at party headquarters, George Street, St Michael.
“I have said it before, and I will say it again, and I will continue to say it, I am confident that whenever the Honourable Freundel Jerome Stuart sets the date for a general elections in this country, the DLP is going to be returned to office.
“I have said it over and over again without fear and trembling, the people of Barbados are going to make a decision on who is better able to lead this country. I am confident that when the comparative analysis is done that they are going to come down on the side of the DLP and Freundel Jerome Stuart,” Ince maintained, adding that “we have a case to put, and we have done well.”
Ince, who is the parliamentary secretary in the Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs, further argued that “the DLP is the greatest institution this side of the world.
“So when we look at the years 1966 to 1976 and we begin to speak of this blueprint there are a number of things that we can look at. The DLP transformed Barbados, free secondary education in 1962 [and] introduction of school meals against the threat that opponents of the programme were going to punch hole in the pots and pans and roll them down Gunhill, St George.
“The philosophy of the DLP was that hungry children cannot learn. You know when you are hungry you cannot see, you begin to see all kinds of colours. [DLP founding father] the Right Excellent Errol Barrow said his party would give the children hot meals at ten cents. It worked and it still works from 1963 until now,” Ince said.
The DLP spokesman said the party understood clearly about diversifying and restructuring the local economy as it was doing today.
He contended that it was Errol Barrow who brought Barbadians from the plantations picking pond grass at “four cents a day or three cents a day”.
“ Can you imagine being paid three or four cents a day for picking pond grass. How much pond grass can you pick in a day? So you understand what I mean when I say the blueprint of Barbados is the DLP?”
The Government senator argued that achieving independence was the turning point for the development of Barbados.
Showering high praise on his own party for the establishment of the National Insurance Scheme in 1967, Ince said: “What for me was the greatest piece of work of the DLP was the establishment of the National Insurance Scheme. Even with the introduction of free education, even with the construction of the Samuel Jackman Prescod Institute of Technology, even with the establishment of a hotel school, the greatest thing that ever happened to Barbados was the establishment of the National Insurance Scheme.
“It touches every possible area of Barbados. It offers financial benefits in several areas of life and provides a pension for the retired in their twilight days. The NIS is a lifesaver. If you are thinking about social development you look at the NIS and if you are looking at economic development you look at the NIS. The scheme also provides funds to Government for major capital projects,” Ince added.