Sunday, June 5, 2022


Both the public as well as private sectors in Barbados have been actively seeking to create  an air bridge between that country and major cities in Africa, but that scheme cannot be recommended in good faith, due to the sad fact that Barbados suffers from systemic official corruption, on both a scale and on a level far and away much worse than is seen elsewhere in the East Caribbean states. The country's elite power structure, directly descended from earlier generations of corrupt national leaders, fiercely holds on to its privileges, which means that it has constant challenges regarding successfully laundering the proceeds of crime, namely corruption. 

The amount of mutual trade and individual and charter tourism between Barbados and the nations of West and East Africa is microscopic, and whilst promoters are eager to predict impressive traffic levels, the current lack of disposable income, on the part of average consumers in both points of termination of the proposed service should serve as a common-sense bar to expending the large amount of capital to lease an airliner, hire and train a crew, and set up a new destination. 

Any nonstop African carrier initiating scheduled service from West Africa to Barbados may end up flying virtually empty service, with the only people on board being money launderers ferrying cash and bearer financial instruments for senior Bajan leaders to cooperating African banks. Since the arrest and conviction of the former Barbados minister Donville Inniss, for corruption and money laundering, corrupt Bajan officials have avoided entering the Continental United States, fearing arrest and indictment on Foreign Corrupt Practises Act (FCPA) and money laundering charges. 

They are looking for some other jurisdictions to secrete their ill-gotten gains; African banks, locally owned and operated, generally end up maintaining compliance departments with staff and budgets significantly smaller than those in the EU and North America, with predictable results, and some banks in the region unfortunately practise "Willful Blindness" about wealthy foreign customers with no Source of Funds documentation. 

Therefore, it must be anticipated that money launderers working for corrupt Bajan leaders, or their criminal associates, will look to be regular passengers on the flights to Accra and Nairobi, for their own illicit operations. It is humbly suggested that nonstop airline passenger service from Barbados not be initiated, lest the flight become the new money laundering pipeline into Africa.

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