January 29, 2023

Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation

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Call to name BAMP the ‘Institution of the Year’

December 26, 2021

A call is being made for Barbados to have a new national award and for an institution that has gained much prominence during the COVID-19 pandemic to receive it.

Barbados’ Ambassador to CARICOM, David Comissiong, believes that organizations which play a vital role in maintaining Barbados’ democracy should be honoured.

He released a statement explaining his views on the need for such an award:

“If I had my way, the highest and most prestigious national award that would be given out in Barbados on an annual basis would be an award named ‘Institution of the Year’. And I say this because a key to the success of any nation – and central to the establishment, functioning and maintenance of a system of democracy – is strong, engaged and responsible institutions.

 Yes, there is no doubt that free and fair elections are extremely important in a democracy.  However, if a nation manages to establish a culture of free and fair elections, but does not go on to also establish strong and independent institutions that play an active role in the national life, inclusive of constructively challenging the political directorate and holding it accountable, a genuine democratic system will not take root and flourish.

 Thus, the health of a Democracy is measured in the number, effectiveness, maturity and independence of its institutions!”

He believes the Barbados Association of Medical Practitioners (BAMP) is an organisation that demonstrates the qualities deserving of this award:

On multiple occasions, BAMP offered its own independent analysis of Government’s protocols and policies – analyses that were distinguished by their laser-like focus on the intricacies of the public health aspects of the national COVID19 response. At times there were divergences of views between BAMP and our Government’s COVID-19 Task Force, but this was to be expected, since BAMP’s primary and fundamental focus was on the public health dimension of the Pandemic, whereas the national Task Force had to also consider wider economic and social dimensions. At every stage, however, BAMP’s interventions were informed, constructive and well-intentioned, and helped to keep the national Task Force focused and accountable.

 And then there is the direct, hands-on role that BAMP’s Vice President – Dr Adanna Grandison – and other members of BAMP are playing in our national Home Isolation programme. Indeed, Dr Grandison has taken on duties as Consultant Manager of Home Quarantine, and – along with other members of BAMP – is also a member of the Isolation and Home Quarantine Committee.

 Let us therefore all raise our voices and extend to BAMP a collective ‘Thank you’!”

He hailed BAMP as an example for others to follow:

I would like to conclude by urging that other national institutions should scrutinize BAMP’s modus operandi and performance in 2021, and use it as an inspiration and model as our new Republic ventures into the new year of 2022.”

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