Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Transport, Works and Water Resources Santia Bradshaw has taken her criticism of the work of some state workers to the House of Assembly, chiding them for inefficiencies in the public sector which have the potential to delay projects.
Insisting that we can do better as a people and a country, Bradshaw insisted that Barbados often falls down as a country because nobody wants to bell the cat and call out others who are failing to do their job.
Specifically making reference to Government’s plan to build 10 000 houses, the Deputy PM’s suggested that public officers failing to facilitate necessary paperwork in a timely manner, could delay the delivery process.
Speaking in the House of Assembly on Tuesday Bradshaw implored public officers to pay closer attention to their tasks including those who facilitate paperwork.
“Those who we want to engage to be able to build out the additional housing stock, we [must] put mechanisms in place to make sure that people are paid.
“Too often across ministries we have situations where monies are held up. And when monies are held up for contractors you know what ends up happening?
”They have staff that they have to pay and that staff has children that they got to send to school, they got women sometimes to support Sir. The actions of one person or a few persons have a knock-on effect on everything that this administration is trying to achieve,” Bradshaw said.
Her comments came in the House of Assembly on Tuesday as the Chamber considered Section 5 Crown Lands (Vesting and Disposal) Act, Cap 225, Brighton, St George.
Bradshaw lamented that it is not sufficient for supervisors across the public sector, who have been tasked with responsibility to oversee others, not to carry out their duties. She said people cannot turn a blind eye and pretend as though government workers who, even though they have the necessary equipment and resources to get the job done, “are still not doing what they are supposed to be doing”.
“A number of the issues that my colleagues have been raising have been of great concern to them and they have become a great concern to me. It has become that recurring issue and the general theme has been that they call the officers across the depot, they are trying to get people to come out to do certain things, people start the work they don’t come back.
“…An unresponsiveness not just to the members in this Chamber sir, but an unresponsiveness sometimes to the wider public as well. Drive through St Thomas, drive through St Andrew, we are doing things, but we are doing them in a systematic way that you can start to see the improvement, that you can start to see the difference within the country in the way that I believe that you can certainly do it if we pay attention to the detail,” Bradshaw said.
On Sunday evening, while addressing constituents at the annual general meeting of the Barbados Labour Party (BLP) St Michael South East branch at the Parkinson Memorial School, Bradshaw spoke out about some public sector workers shirking their responsibilities and not giving the government “an honest day’s work”.
Contending that the public is aware that Barbadians are not getting their best out of workers, the parliamentary representative appealed to those employed by the state to reflect on the significant amount of financial resources the government has been investing in creating programmes to provide them with employment.
“I spoke on Sunday regarding this issue because you know there is a saying by Shirley Chisholm that she was unbought and unbossed. And therefore I am in nobody’s back pocket, I speak my mind because that is what I have been sent by the people of St Michael South East here to do. I speak my mind because that is how I was raised. I call a spade a spade, I am speaking frankly and candidly to people across this country that we can do better as a country, we can do better as a people,” she told the Lower Chamber. (AH)