The week that was
May 24, 2016

The report of an OAS Electoral Observation Mission to a general election in the Caribbean has never been as eagerly anticipated as the one released last week on the 2015 general elections in St Vincent and the Grenadines.

Reports of this sort are usually shoved under some dusty pile in the offices of functionaries of the Government or political parties, with hardly anyone bothering to glance through their pages. But not this time!{{more}} Never have 46 pages of one report been so skilfully used by the spin doctors of the two main political parties to paint completely different pictures of the health of the general elections; never have the interpretation of the words “notwithstanding”, “discern”, “fraudulent”, “materially”, “professionalism” and “partiality” and the sentences containing them varied so much — depending on who was doing the reading.


After 15 years of trying, fisherman Andy McMillan finally hit upon the winning strategy to clinch the title of Fisherman of the Year. The 35-year-old credits his win to having moved his base from Rose Place, Kingstown to Calliaqua, which he said has proved to be a blessing. Well, the blessings were certainly in abundance on Fisherman’s Day, as Andy and his crew brought in a haul of 710 pounds! May the blessings continue, Andy. Congratulations; good job!


Dig a hole in the backyard, stuff it in the mattress, or shove it in the ceiling?

These are the options being considered by some clients of RBTT Bank Caribbean Ltd, who have been descending upon the bank in droves to withdraw money from their accounts. The bank’s depositors have found themselves between a rock and a hard place after learning that the bank would, from this week, charge a service fee of $25 a month on deposit accounts. This news was the last straw for some customers, already peeved by the minuscule rates of interest being paid these days by financial institutions. $25 a month works out to $300 a year — a bank account could be wiped out in no time.

But moving the money from RBTT doesn’t solve the problem, as the other banks don’t want the money either. Our financial institutions are overrun with cash that no one is borrowing. The mattress option is looking more and more attractive every day.


Could this be the end of the line for Dr Linton Lewis and the NDP? For the umpteenth time, the NDP chair is at odds with his president — the two having another difference of opinion or is it a difference of fact? Linton says he did not offer to give up his salary, at least not since 2005. The party leader says he did, and magnanimously too! Linton said he did not know what the money was being used for; his party leader said he did. Poor Linton, could it get any worse for him politically? Let’s wait and see.

If I had a question in SVG Parliament

I’d ask the Minister of National Security just what is the plan for dealing with what appears to be a upsurge in violent crime in the country and when will he or the Commissioner of Police address the nation on the matter? Young men are being taken down at alarming rates — left, right and centre, and to date, he has been uncharacteristically silent. Should we be worried?

Media Watch

With Canouan so much in the news these days, one wonders how come after members of the media were taken on an all expenses paid trip to Canouan to observe the developments there, why hardly anything about the issues affecting Canouan was reported on by them. Was it that the visit was so tightly controlled that it amounted to nothing more than a public relations jaunt?