Fire fat contract retirees, employ youth – Opposition Leader

Leader of the Opposition Arnhim Eustace (file photo).

KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent – Some of the retirees with government contracts here get enough money to pay the monthly salaries of up to 12 Vincentians for a year, Opposition Leader Arnhim Eustace said yesterday.

He once again called on the Dr. Ralph Gonsalves Unity Labour Party administration to send these people home and provide employment for the nation’s youth.

“You see that wages and salaries there? We have a lot of people like [Sir] Vincent Beache and others who are collecting salaries from the government,” Eustace said of the former national security minister turned security consultant to the government.

Eustace was speaking on the heels of the 2012 Budget Debate.

The EC$793.9 million budget for this year comprises recurrent expenditure, inclusive of Amortization and Sinking Fund contributions, of EC$528.7 million and capital expenditure of EC$184.9 million.

Eustace said he estimates there are between 15 to 20 such contract-holders, costing taxpayers an estimated EC$2 million a year.

The figure is based on his analysis from thee years ago, when the contract-holders took home a total of EC$900,000 a year.

“And I think most of those should be removed,” the former prime minister and finance minister said on radio.

“You have a lot of young people in this country who have done all these subjects, looking for work and can’t get work and you have people who have reached 80 [years] and above collecting salaries in excess of $100,000 a year,” Eustace said.

“[Persons] who have their pensions and so on, who have their gratuity — having served in Parliament for a long time — and others who never served in Parliament, who [are] on the radio station everyday cussing people, collecting handsome salaries and we have a lot of young people [unemployed],” he added.

“Think of the family with children who have subjects and they can’t get [work],” Eustace further stated.

“If you are making EC$12,000 a month — and some of them coming up close to that — you can have 12 people at EC$1,000. And I am saying most of those contracts should be removed from the books,” he added.

“I have spoken about it before, I have presented the figures to the people of this country and this year, when I tried to get them, they hide them. You can’t find them in the Registry,” Eustace said.

“I estimate that about EC$2 million is spend on paying these people and most of them should now go home because their contribution to the economy ain’t worth that.”

He said that three years ago trade unionist Joseph “Burns” Bonadie, who advises the government on labour issues, was getting EC$100,000 a year even as Director of Grenadines Affairs Edwin Snagg was getting EC$118,000 annually.

“They are getting plenty money,” Eustace further stated, adding that some of these people were making almost as much, if not more, than Gonsalves.

“On what basis you can justify that? You cannot justify it.

… And most of those contracts, you are not getting anything in the public service for it. Yet, you have people getting frustrated who you said you brought through the education revolution and now they can’t find work.

“ But you have people who have had their day, a lot of them making more than the ministers of government. Most of them should go. I am not making any apologies for that,” Eustace said.

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6 thoughts on “Fire fat contract retirees, employ youth – Opposition Leader

  1. THIS IS REALLY UNJUST! Are these the patriots of SVG? The people who love the poor? or are they political hustlers? When ULP go We need some retroactive integrity legistalion to right these wrongs.

    Posted by OLBAP | January 17, 2012, 12:20
  2. If these people had any decency they would forget payback time, and give up the positions that they now occupy.

    But I suppose these are all the soldiers and all the men who will try and put Humpty Dumpty together again.


    Posted by Peter | January 17, 2012, 15:08
    • I agree with Eustace here, lets start with the Big fat NDP supporters!!!!

      Posted by no-nonsense | January 24, 2012, 17:48
  3. They would not dare rescind these contracts for fear of too many “cat out of bag” scenarios……this second lucrative shadow cabinet will dubiously remain intact, draining millions out of the national coffers with so little to show..pathetic really.

    Posted by vincentsvg | January 17, 2012, 17:45
  4. I told you FOLKS that the way how some people who didn’t have anything’getting rich over night’under this ULP GOVT, is a shame,a disgrace and an insult to poor people. Those people who are retired members of parliament need to go home and live off their big pension. So if fellas like Burns Bonadie getting $EC8333 monthly for contract plus a possible pension for $EC2500 to $EC3000,THEN IT IS A SINFUL ACTION AGAINST POOR PEOPLE. “MURDER” IF YOU WANT TO CALL IT THAT. Some people actually commit suicide through hopelessness when they cannot get food to eat and money to spend,so its still a murder. Again look at the pay Edwin Snagg is getting $EC9833/month in a poor nation like SVG. Straker retired with big pension after so many years as a Minister of Govt and still now making $EC thousands/monthly at the marketing board. Mr Prime Minister where are the jobs for the young people you promised. Many of them have A levels and degrees and I bet some of them reach further in studies than some of those old heads you are appointing. Mr Prime Minister when you hide the record from the opposition leader,why do you stillconstantly want to sue him and his parlimentary comrades for giving the public incorrect information. Ralph Gonsalves this is not the practice of democracy and good governance you preached to the nation. Mr Gonsalves you need to practice what you preach. Mr Prime Minister what is then the purpose of the education revolution another,game plan to play with parents minds inorder to get their votes. You said that people from ‘age 20-35’ do not want to work in the mountains in agriculture. Do you think people coming out of school at the ages of 20 and 21 with their A levels are going to work in the mountains. Would you want your children and Julian Francis children to go and work the lands with their A levels. You think about that Mr Gonsalves! Mr Gonsalves the reason why you do these things is that about half – 2/3 the population in SVG are still ignorant and foolish. There are people WELL DRESSED UP who walk about in SVG and think that they are SO DAMM EDUCATED,BUT LITTLE DO THEY KNOW THEY LACK WISDOM,so much to have you fool them with your ‘SWEET WORDS’. Mr Gonsalves it hurts me from the bottom of my heart to hear all these dirty politics. If I am concern about poor people I can’t get involved in dirty politices. Mr Gonsalves you supposed to be a man with political science background and should know that poverty leads to crime.(NO WORK NO MONEY =CRIMINAL ACTIVITY). An activity that you neither the commissioner seems to have any answers for, so why promote it. That extravagant abuse of public funds EC$2 million/yr Eustace talks about could have help build proper feeder roads to promote agriculture, spray the banana from the black disease and find employment for some of the unemployed youths walking around with A levels and nothing to do. Mr Gonsalves just because you promise and make the effort to do the argyle airport,you turn 2/3 of the fools a little further foolish.The airport was to be finished in 2012, now is 2014. You acted as if the airport is the #1 priority in SVG.
    Yes it is good to have the airport,but it was not good to ruin the Govt money and collaterals to build the airport,and this is WHAT THE DUMM HEADS CANT UNDERSTAND. You told the people that you will get all help from out side and that was a lie. Which airport do you use to travel on now Mr Prime Minister for the last 5 years? So regardless less to the delays and complaints,liat is still the airborne ‘meek donkey’ you describe in your Greek philosophy for over 30 yrs.So why treat the new airport like an emergency situation? Mr Gonsalves there is a difference between ‘necessary and emergency.’ The airport should be build ONLY on the the principles you promised the nation and this is why SVG is facing so much hardship now that nearby St.lucia can buy out SVG govt Colleterals.

    Posted by Danniel8 | January 23, 2012, 04:12
  5. Scum will always attract scum.

    Posted by Peter | January 25, 2012, 12:13

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