Credit unions looking to assist members affected by Ross pullout

Belfield said Portsmouth is almost like a ghost town

Manager of the Dominica Cooperative Societies League Ltd ( DCSLL), Phoenix Belfield, has said the credit union movement is seeking ways to assist members who were affected by the withdrawal of Ross University School of Medicine from the island.

Speaking at a Scholarship Awards Ceremony held at the Prevost Cinemall on Thursday, Belfield said that members have been affected in various ways including apartments being emptied and loss of employment.

“And just like any other financial institution we have to find ways to mitigate against that but most importantly we have to find ways to assist our members, some of whom would have been affected by the withdrawal, through having their businesses curtailed, some of them would have had apartments emptied, some of them would have lost employment,” he said.

Belfield described Portsmouth as a ghost town since the departure of Ross.

“I don’t know how many of you have gone up to Portsmouth since, but it is almost like a ghost town,” he stated.

Earlier this month, Ross announced that it will be pulling out of Dominica due to what it said were damages suffered by Hurricane Maria.

The institution operated at Picard for 40 years serving as a major contributor to the island’s economy.

The University has announced it will move to Barbados.

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16 Comments

  1. David
    August 24, 2018

    Let’s get real. The bank wants to work with the building owners because all the mortgages are in default. The picard rental properties are now worth perhaps a third of what they were. The banks would rather continue the illusion that these properties can be caried on their books at full value instead of taking the hit. A property is only worth the revenue it can generate. Ross properties were going for 500 to 1000 USD per month, now they are 400 to 700 ec. That’s reality. If the banks took their hit as the land owners are now doing then the banks would need a huge provision to allow for the loans that are now higher that the underlying asset. This could ultimately bankrupt some of the smaller lending institutions.

    • Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
      August 24, 2018

      David; Phoenix  is delusional, there is nothing he can do except writing off the loans, as a gift which does not happen in the banking business.

      His alternative is to foreclose on the debtors, and sell the proprieties for what is owed on them, and even at that he will end up loosing lots of money.

      They may be rental units such as Apartments Villas, Town Houses and Condos if there are no tenants to fill them they are now rendered useless, and their value has actually depreciated to next to zero! 

      This is a similar situation when the housing industry collapse in 2008 here, where we saw homes valued at eight hundred thousand dollars sold for $125,000.00 thousand dollars, and builders simply had to bulldozed new homes they could not sell.

      The situation in Dominica is different, there is no way to anticipate a turn around in the economy for another 25-50 years. If I had money saved in that Credit Union, I would withdraw all immediately, before I loose all!

    • jerry
      August 26, 2018

      David that a great point

    • Badbaje
      August 27, 2018

      Good morning David. You say “A property is only worth the revenue it can generate. Ross properties were going for 500 to 1000 USD per month, now they are 400 to 700 ec. That’s reality” I have some news for you sir. Some of the properties are worth “00.00 USD” per month because they are rental businesses, and there is no one to rent. Some are already in the negative, because they are still responsible for the mortgages and/or other band loans, while there is no money coming in. So do your math again and you will see some of the businesses are actually worth much less than you estimated, and the banks and credit unions know this very well.
      Talk on Mr. Belfield sir, with your nonsense!

    • Badbaje
      August 27, 2018

      Another thought here David. The banks and other loan institutions will not suffer, their loans are insured. The loans are insured and therefore they will not suffer if the borrowers cannot pay back.
      I wish I could say the same for all those who borrowed from them. Try going to any loan institution and saying I have a plan to make myself some money, and benefit all those in my area, I need to use your money to implement this plan, but you will not make any profit, while my associates and myself will be able to improve our lives. See how many of those loan institutions will loan you money, you and your friends will die first. That will show you how much they are here to help.

  2. Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
    August 24, 2018

    “Earlier this month, Ross announced that it will be pulling out of Dominica due to what it said were damages suffered by Hurricane Maria.

    The institution operated at Picard for 40 years serving as a major contributor to the island’s economy.

    The University has announced it will move to Barbados.”

    Phoenix ; are you mad guy; or are you so delusional that you are talking about Ross announced it will pull out of Dominica?

    ” The University has announced it will move to Barbados.”

    Are standing there talking fart as if Ross is still in Dominica; don’t you know Ross left Dominica the day it high-tailed out of Dominica to St. Kitts, and had since set up operation in Barbados?

    Thank the Dominica god Roosevelt Skerrit for all of that we are in the transformation phase of all his promises, that is one of his models the rest of the world would use to develop their country; Ross University is a good model for Barbados!

    The semester starts next week!

     Suckers: Vote…

  3. Francisco Etienne-Dods Telemaque
    August 24, 2018

    More stupid talk!

    If you are a financial institution (bank or credit union), the only way you remain in business is by people making deposits. And even if a billion dollars is deposited in your bank or credit union unless you extend loans in order to collect interest you would not have a bank or credit union for too long!

    So, if your idea assisting members, might be to reduce the amount of interest they pay, you will be hurting your credit union, if you write off or reduce the principal that would mean you are out of business, and you will be causing even more damage because the depositors  will loose their savings.

    It is not only Portsmouth that is a ghost town it’s all of Dominica, only that you have not discovered that yet!

    Well, praise God for Roosevelt Skerrit; he told you all he was going to take Dominica to the next level and compounded it by saying he will transform Dominica; he did it!

    Praise Roosevelt! 

  4. waypapa
    August 24, 2018

    Ghost Town? It may be in the future but stop the exaggeration man stupes. Since the number of students decreased picard was slower. The only diff for now is you not seeing medical students up and down. IGA was even pulling out long before Ross, KFC closed long.

  5. LifeandDeath
    August 24, 2018

    Phoenix my boy. Thanks for working for our Dominica. I have a suggestion in one of the ways that the persons affected by the ROSS fallout could be assisted and that is in a real and unconventional way.
    I spoke to a Landlord who hosted Ross students and their families. One of the genuine concerns for the students there had to do with the perceived Rip off in the pricing of every good or service supplied to the students, even at the Supermarkets. Whitchurch Portsmouth for example had significantly higer prices than Whitchurch Roseau for same items.
    Another issue of concern had to do with the Lack of a proper system for the management and disposal of Garbage at the apts. and RAT infestation was a major concern.
    The Road conditions at the Apts. was severely neglected and deplorable. So while Gov’t has to do its part, the ppl who benefited directly took the business for granted.
    So, please teach these ppl the linkages associated with keeping their Market. Customer Care is key!!

    • waypapa
      August 24, 2018

      LifeandDeath let me enlighten you. Garbage disposal was a none issue at Picard when it was handled privately. Each apartment had their own garbage man. Solid waste took charge, closed the Point Round landfilled and all hell broke loose. They are paid a fee but they never pick up garbage on time. Each complex has its own bins, when they get filled the homeowner still has to find ways to dispose after they have paid solid waste. The rats will always come to town when they smell garbage so they need to re open the landfill close by and let Picard people handle their disposal. The students are also responsible for rats in their apartment. their doors and windows are fitted with mesh to keep pests out but they do not practice proper hygiene. They leave food under their beds, in the sheets, in all corners of the house. they leave their dirty dishes overnight and if the cleaner comes once a week they leave dishes in the sink for that entire week. Too many excuses by students who want freeness

    • waypapa
      August 24, 2018

      To continue with LifeandDeath. We do have infrastructural problems which the govt refused to deal with. As to personal care of the students, nowhere in the world they will go to find all that freeness they enjoyed in Dominica. Of course IGA in Possie will cost more the goods have additional cost what do you expect. Its way cheaper than in Barbados for sure and also the US in Bim in $2.00 and some places $1.80. So with higher prices and less upon exchange I would like to hear them on prices, bet you they wont complain. They figure we need them so we should give everything for free. Don’t even talk about housing, with all utilities and amenities they got for little money. Ross was in control so if they rented anywhere below Ross standard that was their personal choice. You outsider always like to talk about what you don’t know then you come here and lie about this person say and that person say. Govt mess up, deal with that!

      • Badbaje
        August 26, 2018

        waypapa I do not know how much price comparison you have done with the stores in Barbados, but I have done it, with food stuff mostly, every year for almost 10 years. Dominica does not offer better prices at all when it comes to such stuff.

  6. %
    August 24, 2018

    Good initiative,but the people affected need to come out and talk ..When any village/town on island is affected,Dominica is affected I applaud the move.We are all in it together.
    Skerrit Must Go
    Skerrit Must Go
    Lazy Skerrit Must Go Now .

    • waypapa
      August 24, 2018

      Come out and talk about what? To say vote UWP?

      • Denis Cooke
        August 26, 2018

        waypapya you make it seem like that is the only thing those who come out can talk about, voting WUP. The affected ones are the ones feeling it most, so they are the ones who need to say what kind of support they need to continue survival, and to recover from this unfortunate incident.

  7. Possie Direct
    August 24, 2018

    Portsmouth is not like a ghost town or almost like a ghost town; Portsmouth is a ghost tomb, a place where ghosts are buried. But then again that’s how possie people like it. Ian them have described Portsmouth as their jarden patat (potato garden) but trust me, the place looks like a zoo now. I have always said we caused possie to be like that because we put party before ourselves. Is labar we labar so Skerrit and Charles Savarin know how to mock us knowing we will do nothing and say nothing except to wrap our tail and take our blows. But this is just the beginning of sorrow you know. I bet you Whitchurch cannot continue without Ross and many of the restaurants and bars in the area will soon follow, though some have been reduced to only 3 days a week since Maria. But we labar so let’s us take our blows under Skerrit.

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