CARICOM discord further exposed at Grenada summit

CARICOM Heads in Grenada

Following the very public collapse of Caribbean Community (CARICOM) member unity at last month’s Organization of American States (OAS) summit in Mexico, the bloc’s disharmony was further exposed at the heads of government meeting currently taking place in Grenada.

Pleas for “collective action” by the newly elected prime minister of The Bahamas, Dr Hubert Minnis, and closer unity urged by the outgoing chairman, David Granger, president of Guyana, appear to have fallen on deaf ears when it came to the incoming CARICOM chairman, Dr Keith Mitchell, prime minister of Grenada and host of the meeting.

Speaking during the ceremonial opening of the 38th summit of CARICOM leaders on Tuesday night, Mitchell criticised the political influence on the operations of regional airline LIAT, which is owned by the governments of Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, Dominica and St Vincent and the Grenadines.

“I have long held the belief that political presence on the board of airlines, such as LIAT, is not helpful to its proper management and efficiency,” he said.

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13 Comments

  1. Dominican
    July 7, 2017

    I wonder if these heads of state use their own airline, such as LIAT, on a regular bsais or do they chose to use privately chartered planes. Do they ever experience the hassle of check-in, immigrations check and security? It appears they are out of touch with their ordinary citizens’s privations. So how can they sit and pass sound judgement and give direction on an important matter like this. The same applies to the Chairman and senior management of LIAT themselves to a large extent.

  2. July 6, 2017

    Just a set of talk about LIAT, every one seems to be an expert, but all these self appointed experts know is who to blame. Can some of these experts tell us what happened to Air Jamaica, BWIA and Caribbean Sun/Star. What about Federal Maple and Federal Palm? It seems we lack the expertise in the region to manage interisland travel efficiently. So it is time countries like Grenada and St. Kitts put their money where their mouth is. Running an airline needs money, and presently only tax payers of four islands are supporting LIAT.

  3. Jonathan St jean
    July 6, 2017

    Dr Keith Mitchell is right.Appoint an independent board and have that body be accountable to the governments and other stakeholders in Liat. I will not characterize the position of Dr Mitchell as disunity in Caricom.There are retired experts from developed countries who can be accessed as consultants to come in and help evaluate the Airline and make recommendations for it’s survival and profitability.These swell headed Prime Ministers need to get out of the way if they really believe that the airline is vital and necessary for integration and development in the region. I know it’s the government’s who prop up Liat but the people use it as well and pay for the services.Some of these Prime Ministers think they are experts on everything and can’t look at the bigger picture for the region.If the US with 50 countries (States) can cooperate where necessary why can’t these leaders of poor countries.Too much competetion not enough unity

  4. July 6, 2017

    Why should caricom countries agree on everything? I thought we lived in a Democracy.

    • The Darkness
      July 6, 2017

      Good point…

      The only thing is, if the “thing” at the time is something beneficial to us all, there should be no reason to agree; however just do instead.

      Time is wasted with useless talks of greater things to come, and nothing is done at the end of the day.

      Also take into account the greed for “looking” the best, with the best “ideas”. This jealousy can also inspire negation to good ideas/ proposals…

      at the end of the day… our lives are determined by other humans. Mortals just like you.

    • Titiwi
      July 6, 2017

      In a democracy the operative word is consensus. One does not have to agree, individually with everything but a consensus can be arrived at on points or measures that serve the common oood. It is based on mutual respect first and foremost.

  5. Shaka Zulu
    July 6, 2017

    It has been a club of Caribbean leaders and swell heads that have not done enough to elevate the ideas, talents and life of Caribbean people. It has not been able to transform or adjust with the times and still holding to a near sighted agreement signed 30 plus years ago. Caribbean leaders are no different than African leaders. Richest continent yet staggering poverty. The Caribbean has some of the brightest and educated minds for a small region but yet staggering ignorance. Shepard’s do lead thier flock to bad lands and loose the heard. We have had too many bad Sheppard

    • Tjebe fort
      July 6, 2017

      You are right there bro. Look at Nigeria, awash with oil almost like Venezuela but it people starving and risking their lives to escape to Europe for a better life. Too many despots in that continent brother and we are reverting to that too.

  6. Spike
    July 6, 2017

    How do you have an airline “owned by the governments of” several nations, governments being political entities, and not have “political presence on the board”? Would Dr Mitchell come out in opposition to government ownership of businesses, or does he just want governments to act as though they were something other than governments and were not political? By the way, governments are not interested in “proper management and efficiency,” as no one gets re-elected on that basis, if the opposition can say that his tie is askew.

  7. zandoli
    July 6, 2017

    This confirms to me what I have always suspected. Caricom is governed by a group of useless politicians who have an inflated sense of self-importance.

    These guys are a total waste of time.

  8. Ibo France
    July 6, 2017

    Not surprised by the disunity at the Heads of Government summit. What do you expect from these misleaders? Every one of them practices politics of division, destruction, ostracism and character assassination at home. I just read that Gaston Browne( PM-Antigua) eviscerated Keith Michelle (PM- Grenada) then flew back home. Caricom has become a very dysfunctional family, just look at the last Commonwealth and OAS Meetings. My expectation of these present ‘leaders’ to accomplish any thing positive is at ground level. Look at how shabbily and contemptuously they treat their own countrymen and women who don’t support their governing party. Cronyism, nepotism, greed, selfishness, victimization, and hoarding wealth are their expertise.

  9. %
    July 6, 2017

    Thats the same CARICOM that sent their police officers to investigate in Dominica, a coup which took place only in Skerrits mind? I say disband this grouping.IT WILL EVENTUALLY..Its irrelevant…Does CARICOM even bother about stealing of elections? It is a boys club..
    SKERRIT MUST GO
    SKERRIT MUST GO
    SKERRIT MUST GO NOW!

    • The Darkness
      July 6, 2017

      Your comment is some what baseless…

      Why does the CariCom have to intervene in 1 country’s business, when they are there for all countries “JOINT” ventures?

      Only Dominicans can solve Dominica’s problems. Another country or state resolving our problem is a HUGE sign of weakness. At that point, we may be subjected to problems akin to that of IRAQ and co. ltd.

      I understand you are fully partisan political and that is ok (for you, not me). Personally I could not care for the lives of Skerrit nor Linton… They both must go… along with all the others in leadership positions, for they do not deserve it.

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