One of Barbados’ newest political parties is warning that if the Opposition Barbados Labour Party (BLP) wins the next election, it will take the country straight into the hands of the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
Solutions Barbados candidate for Christ Church East Central Scott Weatherhead issued the warning at the weekend during a public launch in Independence Square at which he was equally adamant that the incumbent Democratic Labour Party (DLP) should not be returned to office.
While suggesting that both of the major parties were both responsible for the current economic mess in which the island finds itself, Weatherhead cautioned that neither party had a clue of how to fix the problem.
At the same time, Weatherhead dismissed a suggestion made last week by the leader of the United Progressive Party Lynette Eastmond that her party would be willing to enter into a borrowing relationship with the Washington based IMF, while cautioning that this would only result in immeasurable pain for Barbadians.
“Do you think we are feeling economic pain now? Do you know what prescription the IMF ordered for Guyana? They doubled income taxes in Guyana overnight, among other measures.
“Now look at the Guyana dollar. Two hundred and eight Guyanese dollars to one US dollar today. Do you want that for Barbados? Absolutely not,” the businessman stated before turning his assault on the BLP, which he warned was not a viable alternative.
“We know what the BLP will do if you elect them. We believe they will take this country straight to the IMF. Why? Because they have no clue what to do to solve our economic problems. None whatsoever.
“If they did, they would have told you already, exactly what they will do to fix the problem, [but] all they have said recently is that they will do whatever is legal and moral to fix this country.
“Legal and moral? There are a lot of legal and moral things you can do, but the BLP has not outlined a single one,” he said, while pouring scorn over the Opposition’s suggestion that it would have its economic stabilization and growth plan ready for presentation to Parliament within six weeks of taking office.
“So they want you to elect them first and then they will come up with an economic plan. Where will they get this plan from, the IMF?” he asked, adding, “We want to hear that plan now, or they don’t deserve a single seat. Not one.”
In the face of a mounting national debt in excess of 100 per cent of gross domestic product and a fiscal deficit in excess of $300 million, Weatherhead said “the citizens of this country are not stupid.
“Bring your economic plan,” he implored the BLP, while telling the electorate “when you see them canvassing asking for votes, ask them to outline to you exactly what their economic solution is and compare it with ours”.
Weatherhead was equally critical of the DLP telling Barbadians that “they don’t have a solution. If they did, they would have implemented it already.
“After all, they had nine years to perfect one and we are still facing economic suffering. So they clearly have no idea what to do either.
“The only plan I have seen from the DLP is tax and borrow, tax and borrow. That is their solution. More taxes, more debts, more borrowing, more economic suffering.
“[But] at least they had the good sense to keep away from the IMF so far,” he added.