Gaston Browne, Prime Minister, on Friday accused a team from the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) of “taking all the credit” for repair work to homes in Barbuda after only contributing “a few sheets of plywood.”
The incident, which has now gained widespread attention in Antigua and Barbuda, occurred in Barbuda when Browne was there for a tour of homes, the roofs of which were repaired, and for a launch ceremony.
During the tour he saw ‘UNDP-China Aid’ stickers on homes on which the government had worked. The stickers bore two logos; one logo was that of the UNDP and the other said ‘China Aid.’
They were used to indicate the homes that had been partially completed with material from the U.S. $2 million procurement project executed through the UNDP and funded by the government of the People’s Republic of China (PRC).
“You come and plaster UNDP sticker all ‘round de place like you did some big large amount of work? That is totally unacceptable,” the prime minister declared. He made that statement to several UNDP officials, including the UNDP’s Resident Representative for Barbados and the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), Stephen O’Malley, who apologised and readily agreed to requests for stickers, in at least one case, to be removed.