M.P. FOR ST. LUCY, MINISTER OF INDUSTRY, SMALL BUSINESS AND RURAL DEVELOPMENT
The Hon. Denis St. Elmo Kellman is a “people’s politician”, who is devoted to his family, his community, his parish and his country. He is one of the most accessible political leaders in Barbados.
Denis Kellman received his education at Coleridge and Parry School, the Community College and the Barbados Institute of Management and Productivity. Essential elements of this education are the principles of self-reliance and enterprise. Hence, he has spent much of his working life running the family shop, which also doubles as a restaurant, nightclub, sports bar and visitor’s centre. He believes in community tourism and argues that this is the best way to democratize tourism and make this country’s primary industry more meaningful and rewarding to ordinary citizens. He is committed to making tourism “everybody’s business”.
Other important aspects of Denis Kellman’s education were drawn from the philosophy, policies and programmes of the Democratic Labour Party. He has been a faithful member of the Party since 1971. Having served on the executive of the St. Lucy Constituency Branch of the Party, he then consistently represented the parish in the House of Parliament. During the three consecutive terms he served as a member of the Opposition, he vigorously defended the rights of the poor and the vulnerable.
Since 2008, he has served Barbados well at the regional, national and local levels. As Ambassador to CARICOM he was able to reassure this body of Barbados’ commitment to regional integration. As a result he was successful in negotiating an acceptable resolution of the perceived harassment of Barbadian fishermen by the Trinidad and Tobago authorities.
Though his stint in the Ministry of the Environment, Water Resources and Drainage was short it was good preparation for his role as Minister of Industry, Small Business and Rural Development. Since taking up this assignment he has brought new energy and optimism to the manufacturing sector which was in a state of decline. Bringing the manufacturers together to analyze the situation and make plans, has led to the formation of a Committee comprising the Ministry and its agencies, the Private Sector Trade Team, business support organizations and the School of Business at the Cave Hill Campus of University of the West Indies.
He has brought hope to the small business sector by listening to their concerns and actively seeking solutions to their challenges. He has visited businesses in the sector to see their operations first-hand and has formulated evidenced-based policies and programmes to create an enabling environment for small businesses. Under his watch:
- Micro-finance through Fund Access has expanded moving from an average of $3 million per year to $5 million.
- The National Micro Finance Programme has grown and the Factoring Programme has been introduced.
Larger companies in need of finance to support their export thrust have been facilitated. For example, Banks Holdings received assistance in taking Banks Beer onto the London Market; and now WIBISCO and established producers of condiments are also looking for a share of that market. Several meetings have been held to boost this penetration of the British market.
In the area of Rural Development, rural enterprise has become more robust. Not only has there been an increase in the number of loans disbursed, but the requisite training which comes with the loans has intensified. The programme to improve rural housing has continued apace, including the repair and replacement of houses affected by Tropical Strom Tomas.
Minister Kellman has drawn up elaborate plans for each section of his portfolio. These include:
- The fostering of a working relationship between the Business Sector and the University especially in the area of research and development to expand our product base and promote innovation.
- An expanded export thrust especially in Atlantic Canada and Continental Europe.
- Increasing the assistance to small businesses in meeting international standards to facilitate growth in exports.
- Allocating more vending space for entrepreneurs across Barbados.
Denis Kellman objects strongly to the patchy development that has taken place in Barbados since 1994. He wants to see a major economic development programme, which brings opportunities and tangible benefits to all parishes and classes of people in Barbados. Hence he is doubly determined to boost development in St. Lucy (and other neglected parishes). He is committed to:
- Increasing the housing stock in St. Lucy. Spots at Mt. Poyer, Fustic, Coconut Hall and Spring Garden will be allocated for housing.
- Providing recreational facilities at Checker Hall, Mt. Poyer, Archers Bay and St. Clements Rectory.
- Developing the true potential of River Bay and linking it with Bishop and Coconut Hall.
- Using Moontown as a model for community tourism across St Lucy in areas like St Elmo’s Terrace, Colleton Gardens, Well Road etc.
- Upgrading shops in tourist areas to sports bars and eating places.
- Developing Lamberts Hill as a recreational park with a look-out to view the beauty of the north and further enhance the community tourism package.
- Refurbishing school buildings, like the one at St. Lucy Secondary to create learning environments for their communities.
- Developing the 38 acres purchased from Fairfield Investment Ltd. to provide more tertiary level educational facilities in the north.
- With the assistance of the Rural Development Commission, boosting sports in the area by making Checker Hall a centre for football; and upgrading Salmonds, Spring Hall, Connell Town, Lords and North Stars as venues for a variety of sports.
- Converting Hope Plantation into a modern Agricultural School.
- Developing Harrison’s Point as a centre for technological innovation.
- Maintaining the roads from Content to Checker Hall and Nesfield to Crab Hill which were upgraded soon after the DLP victory in 2008.
- Completing the major road-works planned for the rest of St. Lucy, especially the bus routes to Oxford, Cluffs, Swampy Town, Trents and Hannahs.
Denis Kellman has shown beyond a shadow of doubt, what he and his Party can do for Barbados. They need your on-going support.
Contact the Candidate
Constituency Office (246) 439-7483