After all of the hoopla all year we have finally arrived to November 2016!
I, like many Barbadians, am rightfully proud to celebrate our fiftieth anniversary of independence. Many, including myself, have reported on the decay of our society, the inertia and lack of personal responsibility exhibited by many of both Private and Public sector employees, the difficulty in doing business in Barbados and by extension our drop in regional and international ratings. But this month, I’d like to highlight many of our positives both as Barbadian citizens and Barbadian businesses.
Recently, Mr. Bizzy Williams was highlighted and lauded for donating $100,000.00 to the QE Hospital. He like many other businesses, some of which choose to assist entities or charities more discretely, recognize that our role is to assist above and beyond paying taxes to the consolidated fund. The BCCI encourages more philanthropy as we recognize that Government is being asked to do more with less resources; sadly, the shortfall if unaided results in poorer quality services for all citizens!
I’m personally aware that many parliamentarians, private citizens, churches, charities and others “pull their pockets” to assist other citizens less fortunate in obtaining school uniforms, school books and a turkey or ham at Christmas. I’m always so proud to see that Bajans do so without pomp and ceremony but rather as a sense of “I’m better off so it is incumbent on me to help others less fortunate”. Truly, this is perhaps our most endearing quality as a people!
During the last fifty years leading up to November 30, 2016 many have sacrificed and worked assiduously without public acclaim to build the independent country of Barbados. I have personally been privileged to speak to some and without exception their driving force was to build a better nation for the next generation…their children and grandchildren. Sadly, I’ve observed that unlike a marathon where you pass the baton from one generation to another so that the race continues, albeit in stages, the “next generation” perceived that those who preceded them planted trees so that they could sit in the shade! This is a mistaken fallacy which perpetuates itself when one is content with achieving the top of the lamp post rather than aiming for the stars!
Our country is a wonderful place to live and visit, but it is not perfect and it is incumbent on us all, government, private sector, church, labour unions and generally civil society to acknowledge that which is worth keeping as a positive in our society, that which is a cancer and jettison it from our environs and fight to attain that which is necessary to propel us as an independent country “punching above its weight” into the next fifty years.
Click below to access the full story in the Chamber Biz -November 2016