Agriculture Minister assures parrots will be returned to Dominica

Drigo said the birds will be returned at the right time. File photo

Agriculture Minister, Johnson Drigo, has given the assurance that 12 rare parrots taken from the Parrot Aviary in the Botanic Gardens to Germany will eventually be returned to the island.

In an interview with Marpin Channel Five News, he said he is satisfied the birds will return when the time is right.

“We are satisfied that our birds will be back at the right time,” he stated.

Reports surfaced about a week and a half ago that the birds endemic to Dominica were taken to Germany causing a firestorm of controversy mainly due to the lack of public knowledge of the matter.

The government has since stated that they were taken to a facility in the European country to faciliate the breeding of the endangered species since its habitat was severely damaged or destroyed by Hurricane Maria last September.

The facility, ran by the Association for the Conservation of Threatened Parrots (ACTP), was described by Drigo as “recognized” by other Caribbean countries such as St. Lucia and St. Vincent for captive breeding and “it was only Dominica’s turn to look at it as an option considering the impact of Maria on our birds.”

He remarked that he hopes captive breeding of the birds will be successful.

“Hopefully they will breed in captivity and we will be successful in the captive breeding program and all of our birds will be back and they will be released into the wild,” he said.

Drigo was also quizzed on allegations that officials at the Forestry Department who were involved in parrot conservation at the aviary did not take part in the transfer process but he dismissed them as gossip.

“The Ministry of Agriculture cannot respond to gossip, so I am not going to respond to gossip but rest assured everything that had to be done, every I was dotted and every T was crossed…” he said.

He also shot down allegations that the birds were taken out of the island without proper documentation.

“This is 2018, government will not be exporting or sending birds overseas without all the proper documents in place, so these are just gossip which I won’t be able to entertain,” Drigo said.

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68 Comments

  1. The one and only.
    March 29, 2018

    All good things come to those who can wait

  2. Karfwane Wedgehart
    March 29, 2018

    The status quo in the the kingdom of Darkness has plummeted to some more degrees. We have now what amounts to chaos _ any thing goes. It is almost like jazz music with no real rhythm, only random chords and arpeggios within a key. Our ports (Mind) are wide open when they should be closed and are closed when they should be opened. I see secrecy, ineptitude, deep pockets doctorate sales, passport sales, parrot sales, flag rentals. rear-end thinking, six of the seven horses of the apocalypse and thousands lamenting: I could have, I would have, I should have.
    My question have always been: who put these nuts and bananas and the dasheen in the cabinet? I think that they are in the wrong place. Let’s cleanup! Let’s put these in the fields and return Jaco and family to their sanctuary.
    We don’t want your money merchant ; there’s a ceiling in every room.

    • Anthony P. Ismael
      March 29, 2018

      I love your take on jazz music. You must be an accomplished musician on the low. This regime sold out our passports to criminals and :-? :-? :-? toured the globe on the taxpayer’s dime. Do we expect anything less from them? Certainly not.

  3. jam it
    March 29, 2018

    my take on this. unless we rise and take a stand …. like that will continue. mister doesnt know crap. he was given a script and he read it. he is one of the moose boys at the ministry. how the heck was our parrots taken from us and we have no idea when they will be back. be man enough to tell the public that they were sold to cover roof cause election is coming and the pressure is on. that sounds like a better excuse.

  4. Joe Listens
    March 29, 2018

    How can this be right? Wrong man sign the CITES, does that not matter? Can anyone sign Govt papers now? Why was Forestry ignored? INSULT TO THE NATION! See here https://goo.gl/dB9SF2

  5. Mike
    March 28, 2018

    ‘Jo-know nothing -oh no Drigo’ you know nothing so please keep quiet. Go back to Castle Bruce and make room for Loreen Bannis……. but please keep quiet.

  6. Joe
    March 27, 2018

    Panda you all were duped, flimflammed, bamboozled, they are laughing all the way to the BANK. ..they are simply going to breed them and sell offspring for life. BIG Mistake!!
    NOW as it stands Dominica isn’t the only place where you can find The Sesserau Parrot. Sad.

  7. Irma
    March 27, 2018

    Eventually? At the right time?

    Why you didn’t just tell us is on THE 12TH OF NEVER THOSE PARROTS COMING BACK???!!!

    Jah go kraill all you man eh,,,wait and see.

    Wicked set of mofos in dat Cabinet there! Not one of all you have de balls (or taytay) to stand up against this madness??

  8. langlou
    March 27, 2018

    mister minister can you make public the agreement between your ministry and this so called conservationist group…. then will i believe you when you say they will be returned.

  9. Ibo France
    March 27, 2018

    This Minister is very dismissive of the concerns and inquiries about the beleaguered parrots coming from the public at large. His responses amount to nothingness and are laced with profound arrogance. There is no time frame given for the return of the parrot, no hard evidence given of the proper documentation of their departure. Dominica has truly become a banana republic under Mr. Skerrit’s stewardship, everything is on sale. This government is populated with ethical infants. His answers didn’t improve the silence coming from the Cabinet. One of the biggest problems with this government is that they would rather to be ruined by praise than saved by constructive criticism.

  10. jazz53
    March 27, 2018

    Most likely after they have been successfully cloned!

  11. Herbert Volney
    March 27, 2018

    Such utter ignorance by persons who went through the same education system that I went through. Thank God that some parrot stock was saved for breeding in best practice environments so that our heritage birds will be saved for posterity. Minister Drigo proceed and forget the voice of ignorance.

    • Neverson St jean
      March 28, 2018

      Mr Volney sir, don’t u think the parrot issue could be handled differently by the govt.

  12. March 27, 2018

    People of Dominica need to protest at the commercial center, and across fort young about bringing back our birds, some one was paid for those birds , first it was our passports, stolen monies from our treasury , the treasury keys was stolen, even when they had a chain of command at the police station on who check the keys out, police killing Dominicans at the Portsmouth police station and no one has been convicted , foreigners are coming in at our shores illegally ,smuggling in by our own , we need to protect our shores, there is no way the Parrots should have left our shores if we had proper security at our ports, SKERRIT HAS SOLD US OUT , he has to go DOMINICANS please wake up.

    • The one and only.
      March 28, 2018

      Relax they will be back…protest for what? He said they’ll be back…if you can’t wait you do realize the airport is now open to go get them right? You can do it! Go get em tiger!

  13. Child Of God
    March 27, 2018

    When a man can sell Dominica Passport like rice you would not expect nothing better!! Parrots Gone Dominica is of no USE!!

  14. Return Dominica parrots ..
    March 27, 2018

    What kind of story is that .lol I wonder when is the right time? I guess is when the parrots breed enough for them .. { I BELIEVE THE REAL STORY IS HIDING ..

  15. Jonathan Y St Jean
    March 27, 2018

    Drigo, you have had more than a week to cook up a story for the public and that is the best you can come up with.So who made personnel from St Vincent and St Lucia authorities on parrots? You mean you couldn’t have consulted anyony else so you could choose the best place to send the parrots after weighing the information? Drigo you have told the Dominican people the details of the agreement with ACTP so we can analyse it and see if it is good for us as guardians of these treasures.What happened with the birds whilst in Germany? What happens with monies collected from the birds being on display?When China sends its Pandas to zoos around the world they retain control if their resource and greatly benefit from revenue derived from the Pandas.Drigo, if every “I” was dotted and every “T” was crossed the details of these and more would have been explored and communicated with the Domibican people.Is that the best you can do Drigo? No wonder agriculture is in shambles for the past 15…

  16. Faceup
    March 27, 2018

    I am heading to Germany to TAKE BACK MY PRIDE AND JOY…Money talks.

    • The one and only.
      March 28, 2018

      Go for it! Finally someone who will take action start up a fund account and get our birds back!

  17. the one and only
    March 27, 2018

    We Complain about the parrot being taken away….get so depressed our precious bird is gone. Some ppl might even loose a reason to be alive as it’s gone…we are then advised that they will be returned…yet we “still” complain…. if the birds are returned I bet you all will still complain…”ohh the birds look different” “maybe it’s a replica” lol…

    man give ppl what they want or what they complain about and it’s not enough……
    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again.. you all complain a lot.
    Birds are coming back, give it a rest and move on

  18. Jonathan Y St Jean
    March 27, 2018

    Eh ben, moomoo la ka parley.Drigo you should be ashamed of yourself to come more than one week after disturbing report that our national resource was removed form the country under a veil of secrecy, with the general public not knowing anything about it.Drigo you say that the “I’s” were dotted and “t’s” were crossed let me show you where you don’t even know what you are talking about.Some “I’s” which were not dotted was to inform the Dominican people about the movement of the birds before the act.Another “I” undotted is the IFAW personnel working with Dominica didn’t know before hand of the intent to move the birds.The young man who is mainly responsible for the parrots in Dominica didn’t know nor participate in the preparation of the birds for movement overseas.Now to some “T’s” uncrossed by you Drigo.Your permanent secretary gave us a story about the birds being sick, well the IFAW vet said only one bird was sick with sinus problem and one other had a bad toe.

  19. Willie
    March 27, 2018

    You had better bring back our parrots BEFORE you call the next election
    And any Party that wants my vote will have to promise to start the process of bringing them back on Inauguration Day

  20. Illegit Skerrit
    March 27, 2018

    Taking without the consent of The People who work the land is theft. Return the animals to the land and its people!

    • The one and only.
      March 28, 2018

      I think that’s the point…a little wait isn’t going to kill us

  21. Nan
    March 27, 2018

    ‘eventually be returned’ ??????????????????????
    ‘return when time is right’ ???????????????????
    ‘back at the right time’ ?????????????????

    Could he not come up with something more convincing, and less rehearsed

    • The one and only.
      March 27, 2018

      We’re getting back the birds???? Go get them back yourself if you want them so bad

  22. Dominican
    March 27, 2018

    Johnson, I truly feel sorry for you. It became public nine days ago that our parrots had been removed from their enclosure the previous day under a cloak of secrecy. As far as I know you were not even aware of this.
    The persons really responsible for this did not put you in the loop, did they?
    Your assurance that the birds will be returned to Dominica when the time is right is meaningless. At best, a tentative promise may have been made that we would receive a chick, should the breeding attempt in Germany produce any offspring, the rest being sold for good money by the people who acquired our birds by whatever means. I am sorry but this whole saga has a clandestine ring to it with people in authority disposing of what is not rightfully theirs.

  23. Real!!!!!!
    March 27, 2018

    This GOVT needs to be voted out immediately because too much racket in this country.

    • Neville
      March 27, 2018

      We need a vote of No Confidence. The Skerrit regime must go.

    • The one and only.
      March 27, 2018

      I suppose you can do a better job? Please go ahead, don’t just complain go and start a party and do your best to take the job as new PM

  24. Drigo, shut up; as usual you are lying through you teeth!

    Were you involved when the parrots were stolen, or taken from the Aviary, and smuggled out of the country? There is no reason why the Parrots were taken out of there and sold to some German. For you to sit there with your head looking as if it is screwed to your body blowing out hot air is a disgrace.

    When you say the Parrots will return when the time is right, can you tell us when will the time be right? If the Birds needed medical attention, it does not take a year, a month or a week to treat a bird!

    There is no justification for you all sending the Parrots to Germany, unless they are sold for personal gains. Are you and your government suggesting that there are no animal veterinary doctors in the Caribbean, if there are none in Dominica who could be called in the treat the Birds?

    You need to shut up because there is no defense to corruption!

  25. Who feels it knows it
    March 27, 2018

    There is so much lies, confusion and hypocrisy on just about everything going on in Dominica at this time. No doubt these corrupt guys have used Maria and Erika to get all they wanted in the dark and now all they doing is spin the truth. Right now the lies and corruption of these of those in authority make Dominica a far undesirable country to be in than the distrution suffered by Erika and Maria. Again, our biggest problem in Dominica at this time is not the destruction suffered by Erika and Maria combined, but really our problem is that of our government that cannot be trusted by friends and supporters of the government, supporters of the opposition and even donor countries. No one trusts our government and that’s our biggest problem.

    • Who feels it knows it
      March 27, 2018

      When you have a government that spinning and lying about a dozen bird’s, tell me how you can trust them with anything? We get to the point where anyone calling talk show programs and say they calling on behalf of the prime Minister and Tony Astaphan and the prime minister doesn’t not condemn that or confirm it. That’s the sad state of our country and it is very depressing man

  26. Faceup
    March 27, 2018

    Voolee zor vollee de Parrot and that not Gossip..You Politicians i tell you boy.. Parrots you guys could not create a habitat for? So you telling me the Government of Dominica is very poor? Labourites all you like it so..

  27. John Jay
    March 27, 2018

    I wonder if he know what he talking about. This happen around him and don’t know one …. about it but just press and talk.

  28. Possie vibes
    March 27, 2018

    Them fellas there people just can’t trust them no more.

    • The one and only.
      March 27, 2018

      Well who can you trust

  29. Family Guy!
    March 27, 2018

    Mr. Drigo, Please go and fix the pot holes from Castle Bruce to Petite Soufriere which you can plant Fig and Dasheen in it. You have failed to give proper representation to the people who elected you other than driving on a Sunday and make empty promises and words like ”i’ll check you, i’ll check you” its time we the people of the Castle Bruce constituency wake up and stop have you take us for a ride. The roads are a disaster, many house still under Tarpaulin with the hurricane season not so far ahead, you have failed us over and over again with your poor representation not even your leader has ever visited since the passage of Hurricane Maria to see the state and the condition the people are living in. You Mr. Drigo needs to go and stop let Skirret take you for a ride and pass like a fool, no wonder they want to replace you with the …….. from Castle Bruce that working in Skirret office, but we the young people know and deserve better & you will never be elected again!

  30. Iamanidiot
    March 27, 2018

    “At the right time” , so if they decide to send back the bones it’s fine, as long as it’s “At the right time”.

    I just checked my calendar “At the right time” wasn’t a month or a year

  31. Ray
    March 27, 2018

    Couldn’t captive breeding happened locally? Haven’t we done caprive breeding here in Dominica in the past?
    You will have to entertain our questions and concerns whether you want to think it’s gossip. The people put you in power and have to ask questions and you need to provide answers. When you and your fellow ministers start to do things transparently, then there’ll be no cause for gossip. The parrots were moved in a very questionable manner, much like how this government does many things. The ministry only started to talk about the parrots days after the people began to talk. It is time to answer to the people and our concerns.
    It is time to give change a chance.
    God bless Dominica.

  32. Shaka Zulu
    March 27, 2018

    Drigo was also quizzed on allegations that officials at the Forestry Department who were involved in parrot conservation at the aviary were not involved in the transfer process but he dismissed them as gossip.

    “The Ministry of Agriculture cannot respond to gossip, so I am not going to respond to gossip but rest assured everything that had to be done, every I was dotted and every T was crossed…” he said.

    He also shot down allegations that the birds were taken out of the island without proper documentation.

    “This is 2018, government will not be exporting or sending birds overseas without all the proper documents in place, so these are just gossip which I won’t be able to entertain,” Drigo said.

    This response alone tells when a man is not telling the truth or caught with his pants down. Every T was crossed except the ones that were meant to informed the public. Instead of transparency you had lransparency. Sound like a drunk man.
    Drigo my parents did not make a fool.

    • Shaka Zulu
      March 27, 2018

      Drigo, in captivity parrots live about 80 yrs. If the original explanation was to breed these birds in case they go extinct and to store genetic information why are you talking about they will be back when time is right. Lets say they breed and make young in two years what is going to happen to the chicks? Dominica does not currently have a parrot extinction problem and the birds are all over in the wild. Your comment above tells me the original explanation was a lie you guys realise you made a mistake and giving yourself time to get the birds back because of the outrage. A breading program to protect species is a long term program. I am talking about 20 to 30 plus years. Every offspring belongs to Dominica. If i were you i would stop beating around the fu…ing bush and get them back tomorrow. Stop disrespecting what makes dominica Dominica. Its from people, to passport to parrots being denegrated. How these ………. is a gov minister is besides me.

      • Ibo France
        March 27, 2018

        A government is as good as the people it is comprised of. Mr. Drigo has absolutely no respect for his fellow countrymen and women. It’s no wonder that the country is underperforming so badly. This is due to the poor caliber of people in the Cabinet parading as intelligent beings. This man has insulted the intelligence of the people with his moronic utterances. Every time these Ministers, including the PM, open their mouths, they dispel all doubts as to the extent of their brainlessness. How can anyone vote to elect such a dumb-witted person to office? I just remember that Dominicans don’t vote for individual candidates, they vote for a political party.

  33. concerned
    March 27, 2018

    when …after they are bred ?…..with all the offspring or just the exact 12?….every last one should be returned…how are we going to know how many were bred and returned or not?

  34. anonymous2
    March 27, 2018

    The birds will be returned “at the right time.?” What time is that Drigo? Never? They need to come back now. They should have never left. There shouldn’t be another hurricane for at least a couple of years and I doubt that there are any plans to even get them back in a couple of years. You just hope the people will forget about it.

    • The one and only.
      March 27, 2018

      Do you feel lonely as the birds are not around?

      • Sisserou
        March 28, 2018

        The one and only
        You’re a real jerk!

      • The one and only.
        March 28, 2018

        Lol wow….I guess you must one of those that are lonely and sad that little birdy is gone? Don’t worry they’ll be back..now be a good sport stop complaining like the others and be happy that the birds will be back…btw thank you for the compliment hun

  35. dee
    March 27, 2018

    Every ”I” was dotted and every ”t” was crossed.
    I know is somebody dat tell you to say that , but when you close your eyes to sleep you have to reflect on what was written for you , and ask God to pardon you , but de fing is you will never know if he pardon you as he never reveals .
    Man dow pretend that you only have two senses now nah .
    Allu man criminal to take our endangered species and try to get dem to adopt a German life style . Garcon i dow forgiving allu for dat one .
    is not like de monies being given for us Dominicans nah ; is not like de passports that are written by man nah .
    DAT IS DOMINICA NATURAL PRODUCT .
    THERE MUST BE A REASON WHY THEY HAVEN’T LIVED NOWHERE ELSE .
    can you imagine taking a kangaroo out of Australia to Breed ,
    I wish they would bring Two male tigers and let them off on de ministry steps to breed allu …. let allu jump out de window onto de concrete downstairs.

  36. dee
    March 27, 2018

    ”we are satisfied that our birds will be returned at the right time”
    when is the right time ? yesterday or the day before ?
    maybe if they artificially inseminate them , get the eggs , hatch dem in their own hatcheries, and give allu back de old ones, if they still alive, or in agony in their last days,
    then allu would release them back to contaminate those genuine natural ones in the wild ? Allu need to buss a jail . I remember somebody who use to force their chicken to lay twice a day and dem chicken only living a few months . Man allu dow even know whats going on in Dominica, is in Germany allu man will be ably to monitor what’s going on ?
    I TELL ALLU MAN AWREADY GOD NOT DRINKING RUM AND HE WATCHING .
    he love to give man all de rope he want to hang himself .

    • The one and only.
      March 27, 2018

      Hey buddy, you do realize that people all over the world can see your backward slangs right??
      “I tell allu man awready” -what the heck is that. How about saying

      I’ve told you all several times
      I’ve told you already
      I’ve told you all so many times – doesn’t thst some better? I don’t care about your political preference and I don’t even care about typos but come on you’re typing that garbage on a website accessed by hundreds of thousands of people all over the world. Sound smart or at least try to.
      Get the grammarly app if you’re using a smartphone

      • The one and only.
        March 27, 2018

        Sorry i meant ***doesnt that sound better****

      • Sisserou
        March 28, 2018

        The one and only
        You’re even a bigger jerk now!

      • The one and only.
        March 28, 2018

        Wow!
        Just so I understand, some guy or girl types some garbage with Dominican slangs on a website access by hundreds of thousands of people, I correct this person and educate on English and I’m a jerk??? Well if being a jerk means I get to give people the hard truth then once again thank you for the compliment….

        Usually I don’t assume but in this case I’ll make an exception and assume that you agree with “dee” and that his slangs are appropriate which makes you truely ignorant :)…I’ll be a jerk and you be ignorant…cool?

      • dee
        March 29, 2018

        The one and only
        I will not dignify your comment with a justified response.
        I will just ask you, next time you see a crab to say it is a crab and not ask if it is a crib and when it grabs you, for you to scream , pijay zyeux .
        I sincerely hope you understand my analogy .
        I am Dominican to the bone man. you need to read stuff written by educated Australians , Americans , Brazilians Chinese ( if you can understand other languages that is ) then you will realize and accept you need to also be proud of our Dominica and its heritage . I would tell you now ”take a hike” but that’s British , but i can tell you ……………

      • The one and only.
        March 29, 2018

        Wow! Dee now isn’t that better? I understood roughly 98% of what you wrote…now be a good sport and keep up language going.

        If being proud of Doninica and heritage means I have accept backward slangs then I’ll pass, but thank you for the advice. Since you won’t tell me to take a hike, I’ll tell you to take a hike.
        Until we meet again on the next post have yourself an amazing day/night :)
        Take care Hun :)..
        remember most people don’t care about typos… but if you speak such street slangs you call “Dominica heritage” you will sound uneducated…

    • vrai den
      March 27, 2018

      WE WANT OUR PARROTS BACK NOW, before any breeding, alteration, artificial insemination or before our birds are put through any unnatural processes. Please Mr. Drigo, if you all know what’s good for you all, get our parrots back ASAP, the same way you all hijacked them out of Dominica. Guys, we cannot let them get away with this, what right time? The right time is now, they should have never gone, so its overdue for them to come back. They have survived all those years, let nature take its course, God takes care of all the animals in the wild, they will survive in their natural habitat. They survived Hurricane Maria, didn’t they? Thats why you had them to send away to Germany, for sale.

      • The one and only.
        March 28, 2018

        If it means so much to you, please go and get them…gather up funds and get them back! You can do it!

  37. jihan
    March 27, 2018

    Drigo,you all are a bunch of liars,please tell the Dominican public ,why were our birds sold to Germany,when they are all thriving,First of all these birds migrated out of Dominica before the storm,thats what birds do,and returned when it was all over,you guys cant sell too many passports so our national treasure are being sold now,Time will tell Drigo,the wrath will come down on all of you.

  38. jacko
    March 27, 2018

    honestly i thought that parrot thing a joke. :lol: :lol: :lol: so parrot go n breed?lol

  39. John
    March 27, 2018

    Every T was crossed and every I was dotted, the documents need to be published on the internet and the local paper for the citizens of Dominica to see. They also need a signed document, affidavit stating that no money was paid to anyone involved. Where is the written proof that this was done legally with a promise of the birds return, by a certain date, that needs to be put in writing. If it was not done illegally there should be no problem showing the documents.

  40. nng1332
    March 27, 2018

    DA: hot mess and getting hotter every day! Why??

  41. love my pm
    March 27, 2018

    :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol: :lol:

  42. March 27, 2018

    Somebody that tell john yes to say that man?

  43. dee
    March 27, 2018

    Garcon
    allu man will make people give allu limierre ein .
    allu lucky dem young people not as good as the aged ones , as somebody would make allu bleat like a goat every time allu lie , like Pinochio .
    So de Ranger that in de gardens working with the parrots for over 20 years is spreading gossip when he says he knew nothing of them being taken away ?
    Is so your mother brought you up boy Drigo? you bringing shame on de lady now ,.
    Man you say ”will eventually be returned” ,is only cock i hear dem say when they have teeth , not parrots .

  44. RandyX
    March 27, 2018

    And you really think we’ll believe that bag of lies.

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