Friday, August 18, 2017

From Rags to Riches

Friday, April 14, 2017, 17:32
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4Monday, 10 April 2017   If there is one thing that can be said about these UDP politicians, now and when they are finally kicked out of office, it is that they made much of the time they were given to fool the people. It is likely that every single UDP Minister will have accumulated vast assets when the political bell finally tolls for them, and certainly more than a few of them will be multi-millionaires. It is frankly disturbing to see that some of these persons went into politics with nothing, and in the space of a few years have come up big time.   And the remarkable transformation has not been limited to just UDP Ministers who seem much more focused on personal enrichment than on actually doing the job for which they were elected. Look at privileged Belizeans like Anwar Barrow. In 2007/2008 Anwar Barrow was looking around to see what he could get into, without a clue what he would do. Less than ten years after, the son of the Prime Minister is a millionaire, with a money-lending operation that has expanded to the entire country. All this while he was raking in dough from BTL as a special Director of the Board and then as the head of the company. He also reportedly has amassed vast wealth in properties and land all over the country. That didn’t happen because of any particular skill – he is just the son of a Prime Minister who believes firmly in bold, brazen nepotism.   The Belize City Council is a prime example of persons who are doing absolutely nothing tangible to make the lives of residents better, but are paid very handsomely for the nothing that they do so well. Look at Dean Samuels, our favourite barber turned wealthy politician. Years ago this fellow was struggling like all normal Belizeans to make a living. Now he is living the life of a privileged UDP, with regular fancy parties in his mansion in Hattieville and fancy rides galore. Wouldn’t we like to see a list of Samuels’ assets before and after politics? 5 And that has been the story, really, of all the Councillors including Dion Leslie, Phillip Willoughby, Alifa Elrington, Alain Gonzalez and certainly the man at the helm, Darrell Bradley. They have all been able to access salaries to the tune of almost $4000 a month for doing nothing. Bradley, who gets much more than that, has been able to work as a full-time attorney, driven to Court every day in his municipal vehicle, while still being paid as a full-time Mayor.   The city has suffered as a result of this abuse. Not only are taxpayers made to foot the bill for the huge salaries of all these Councillors, but the outrageous neglect has been clear to see. The city looks worse now than it did just 5 years ago. In fact, it appears that this Council has forgotten that there is a Southside, since poverty has grown in that area and there has been no attention placed on ever deteriorating conditions.   It is time for Belizeans to start looking at all these UDPs that have gotten rich at the expense of taxpayers. Way past time.  
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