The electoral system is one which Barbadians have been proud of until recent general elections. The cries have been getting louder and louder from the public that votes have been bought on election day. Yes we have had political candidates in the past wooing the public with “corn beef and biscuits” at the village shop but that is where it ended. How big is the problem of vote buying in Barbados?
We have a situation in Barbados where both political parties appear to be guilty of the practice of throwing cash and items around to garner support. Prime Minister Fruendel Stuart could hardly post general election to inform the public he witnessed vote buying on election day. His revelation was followed by a similar statement from an equally indignant Attorney General Adriel Brathwaite after his swearing in session at Government House. Today in the news general secretary of the Democratic Labour Party George Pilgrim stated he had advised members of the public who witnessed vote buying on election day to call the police. One wonders if the Prime Minister called the police when he saw what he saw.
Members of the BU family who were around in 2008 may recall similar concerns raised about vote buying. BU actually posted a blog – Activities In The Farm On Election Day. What is unfathomable is that with all the cash, iPods,watches, herb that was reported to have been distributed on election day, there was only ONE arrest made by the police.