Sisters and Brothers,
I must start by complimenting, congratulating and saluting the leaders of the National Emulation Committee, under our very hard working and very dedicated young, Cde. Wayne Sandiford who is the chairman of the Emulation Committee.
I must also congratulate and salute the outstanding and hard-working members of this Emulation Committee to whom all the workers here were introduced a little while ago.
May I also, Cde. Chairman, pay tribute and acknowledge the presence of some of the leaders of the three Unions who today are here with the workers that they represent: from the Agricultural And General Workers Union, Cde. Horsford, the Public Workers Union, Sister Cecelia and the Technical And Allied Workers Union Cde. Granger.
It is very fitting comrades that today you have not just so many hundreds of workers from the Grenada Farms Corporation, (from the agricultural farms run by the government) but also from the Eastern Division of the Ministry of Communications and Works and from the Ministry of Agriculture. It is very fitting because today although we may not immediately realise it, is a very historic day. Today, we are trying to set in motion an extremely important programme which we feel will in future months, and moreso in years bring tremendous benefits to the workers of our country. Of that we have absolutely no doubts comrades.
EMULATION AND PRODUCTION
We are very, very certain that this emulation programme that Cde. Wayne Sandiford has described so well is going to make the difference to raising production and to increasing labour productivity and discipline in our country. We are dead certain about that and there is a reason why we are certain because what this emulation business is really all about is that it is .a way of trying to raise the interest of the workers in their jobs. It is a way of trying to give them some more encouragement and motivation so with the extra encouragement and the extra motivation they will produce more by raising their skill levels, by getting more training, by making sure that they compete in a friendly way with their other brothers and sisters.
Let me see if I could give you the example in a different way. Many comrades here probably still play a little All-Fours or a little Dominos or maybe a little Cricket and maybe some of the younger ones might even try a piece of Football. Now if you play in an All-Fours competition and the competition is for the best team, let us say, in Grenville against the best team in Birchgrove and the best team maybe in Marquis - Soubise taken as one you are not going to wait for the last day before the competition to start to practice. You will start to practice from months before and you will want to make sure that the men in your All-Fours team are the best. You will want to make sure that when they see a Jack and they could hang the Jack, they hang the Jack fast. You wouldn't want a man who sit down as a "Cunumunu" and when he could hang a Jack he turn his back as if he didn't spot the Jack.
PREPARE FOR THE MATCH
In other words, you going out there to win because you know when you play and you hang that Jack in that All-Fours competition you get a prize. It is the same when playing Cricket, whether it is Wind-Ball Cricket or big Cricket with pad and hard ball. You know is eleven people on the team so you not going to wait until the competition is supposed to start on the Saturday and Saturday morning you call together twenty men and you say well let me see who could play now. "John, you look like a good fast bowler, you go open". And then you watch another man who has a nice belly and you say, "You look as you could open bat, you could take good lash so ah want you to open bat".
It doesn't work like that. For months before you practising. For months before you want to see who is a genuine stiff bowler or if he is a real fast bowler or you want to see if he really bowling slow but playing he bowling fast. You want to see when he say he is a slow bowler if he could get turn and if he know the difference between an off break and a leg break and you not going to put the most clumsy man on your side to go and field in short leg. So when the batsman make a vup (sic) he have to catch with his mouth. You won't take that chance.
For months before you practising so you know when the time reach and you send two men to open bat they know the top of the bat from the bottom. And you want to make sure too that when your time to field and you give a man the new ball before the ball waste, you have to make sure is not a [unclear] spinner you putting into take licks. Now that is the same with emulation, comrades.
What they are trying to do is to try and find which workers can fit best in which areas of work. What we are trying to do is to find which workers are able to produce the must on a regular basis.
FINDING THE BEST WORKERS
What we are trying to do is to identify which workers are the ones who have the most ideas in their heads and, therefore, if they have a shorter way to achieve a job you know they will use the shorter way. You're trying to find the best workers, you're trying to make sure that the best workers pass on their best qualities to the other workers so more and more we work as a team. What this emulation is saying is that when you find these best workers who have the best ideas and know the best shortcuts to do the job more quickly, you want to make sure that these workers got a prize because they deserve a prize because of their consciousness, their extra hard work, their extra ideas, their extra creativity and determination; it is because of that, their estates are making more money, then they must get more out of it.
The comrades who does the most work; who produces the most results, who helps the best in pushing the estate forward, this comrade deserves a prize, deserves to be recognised by his fellow workers, deserves to get his picture taken and put in the "Free West Indian". And the worker of the month from Estate or wherever it is, deserves to be on the television screen. He deserves that because he worked for it. Comrades, that is what the emulation thing is all about.
IT'S LIKE SCHOOL
It's just like in school. When you're going through standard one, standard two, three, four and so on, every term you have a little marking business and the person who do the best get recognised and when the year comes to an end those who do their best go up to a new class and those who do so good will make another set of turns in the same class and when they really playing the fool especially if they have the ability to do well but they don't want to apply themselves, maybe you put them in a corner and you give them a big dunce cap and say, "sit down there with that dunce cap".
Now that is what this emulation usually offers: to help people achieve higher standards, to be better in their jobs and to make more for the country and to make more for themselves.
Comrades, we have to understand why emulation is the answer at this time because what emulation will do is to lift production and the reason we have to lift production is because if we don't lift production we will not find the dollar bills to do all the things that we are doing.
It is through production that we get the dollar bills. The dollar bills don't drop from the sky. As you know you can't go and climb no mango tree and pick a ten dollar bill. It is a piece of mango you can pick. So, in order to get the extra dollar it means extra work, it means more production, it means more nutmeg, more cocoa, more banana. It means building the schools faster, or building the community centre faster. It means working hard and working faster. That is how the dollar bills come. They don't come by magic and we have to produce more at this time for several reasons.
The first reason you all hear over and over again but is true and I want to tell you again today. We have to produce more and work harder at this time. First, because the world outside there hard, is like a grugru world. Hard.
You see them big powerful country like America, 15 million people out of work and the American government acknowledging and accepting is at least 9 1/2 million people without work. You ever sit down and think about that? In this little country all we have is one hundred thousand people plus. If you multiply one hundred thousand by ten you get one million. So you have to multiply it by ten times more to know how much people out of work in America today. One hundred times the whole population of Grenada is out of work in the big powerful America.
REAGAN, THE CUTBACK MAN
And apart from the people out of work, every day the man called Reagan the President, he cuts back on hospitals, he closes down more schools, he cuts back on drugs for the poor, he cuts back on subsidies for the poor farmers, he cuts back on benefits in one kind or another for the workers in medical attention, in housing relief, in all kinds of areas. In other words, in America up there now is like a grugru. It is hard like rock. But it is the same countries where things hard, like America with over nine millions people out of work and like England, with over three million out of work, that buy we produce.
In other words, every time things get rougher in their country, the first thing they try to do is to cut back on how much they buy and every time they cut back the price of what we are selling drops down some more.
And every time things get hard for them they put more on the price of what they selling us so what you end up with is a vicious little cycle, just going round and round like a bicycle wheel.
Every year our price goes down their price goes up. That makes it hard for us, that means we have to produce more, that means we have to find more markets, otherwise we not going to make. That is the first reason comrades. The second reason we have to produce more. I don't know how many times sisters and brothers in this pavilion ever sit down and think about what it is that over these last three years the revolution bring.
DON'T TAKE FOR GRANTED
Sometimes, we take things for granted. You know Grenadians already. If yesterday you were paying forty dollars to the doctor every time to get your injection and the rest of it when it gone free that is automatically something you forget. Immediately you say you mean free well yes, it must be free. "Dat what ah paying tax for. It always free. How you mean free".
For hundreds of years you have to pay for secondary education. At one point thirty five dollars a term, and so on. And when the Education becomes completely free, the day after it become free you say, "Well how you mean free but is always free. I never used to pay nothing for no secondary education".
In other words comrades our memory is short, short, short. And those people who never sit down and believe that the time would ever reach when one of their children could go away to study to become a doctor or an engineer or a scientist or the minute the scholarship gone they say, "But how you mean, yes, me child must go and study and become a doctor. That is me rights". Short memory, comrades. I want us to reflect on that a minute comrades we take for granted everything that comes.
Like you have this sister and brother walking in the road and the road has holes and then they say, "Well the Government must come and fix the road" and when the government has to fix the road, every mile means a few hundred thousands dollars to pay for asphalt, for extra work, extra labour and therefore extra wages, for extra equipment and equipment cost a lot of money.
It is the same nutmeg and cocoa and bananas that we have to use to set up an asphalt plant, or to set up a stone crushing plant or to buy the front end loader or whatever else we have to use to make sure that the road could get fixed. But once the road start to get fixed and the question of having to pay tax comes up nobody wants to pay tax. Everybody ducking, everybody pretending that tax is for somebody else but not for them. I never meet one person yet that like to pay tax but while not paying the tax everybody expects the benefits and assumes the benefits must come as a natural right.
SUGAR AS AN EXAMPLE
Now, over the last few years, brothers and sisters, before the Revolution the price of sugar in certain parts of the island, as you know, was at various stages as high as eighty-five cents, move up to over ninety cents, go back down to seventy cents and settle somewhere around seventy-eighty cents.
After the Revolution, the first act reduced it down to fifty something cents, throughout 1979 it stabilise at sixty-five cents then in 1980 it went up to sixty-eight cents in part of that year to seventy-two cents last year into seventy-eight cents and is still seventy-eight cents now. Seventy-eight cents a pound for the sugar we have to buy. If you're living in Dominica the same sugar that we pay seventy-eight cents here for, that sugar is ninety-two cents. If you're living in St. Lucia, the same sugar that cost us seventy-eight cents here, that sugar is ninety cents. If you're living in Montserrat the sugar is eighty, cents. The eighty-five cents a pound we have to pay for the rice, in Montserrat is one dollar and five cents.
The point I'm making is that the way in which these things work and the reason why we are able to keep the prices down at a certain level is because there's a government that is concerned about keeping prices as low as possible. It is a government that is concerned about trying to stabilize prices and making sure that those things the masses must use remain at a certain price.
The Marketing and National Importing Board, for example by marketing these goods directly, we are able to keep the price to a certain level.
LOOK AT CEMENT
Let us look at cement for a minute. The Marketing Board is also bringing in the cement. In Grenada, a one hundred pound bag of cement sell for sixteen dollars and twenty-five cents, in St. George's and seventeen dollars and fifteen cents in Grenville and other parts of the island. One hundred pound bag sixteen dollars and twenty-five cents or seventeen dollars and fifteen cents, in Dominica, a ninety-four pound bag six pounds less than our one hundred pound bag sells for twenty-two dollars and fifty cents, ours for sixteen dollars and twenty-five cents six dollars less. In St. Kitts, a ninety-four pound bag sells for eighteen dollars and ninety-seven cents two dollars and cents more. In Montserrat, a ninety-four pound bag sells for nineteen dollars and sixty cents.
The point again I want to repeat sisters and brothers is that when we are able to maintain prices at a certain level to keep those prices reasonably stable, that is an extra benefit which we have to regard as part of the wage, part of the dollars that we getting. But is not only in the area of milk and cement and sugar and rice you could also see it in other areas. If you take milk, the free milk programme that has been introduced means that the mothers in our country don't have to go outside and pay two dollars and eighty-seven cents for a pound of the Fernleaf milk in the plastic bag because if the milk comes into the house free that is a two dollars and eighty-seven cents that can be saved. If in the old days every time we go into a doctor shop we have to pay five dollars for walking into the gentleman shop. We have to give five dollars for the injection or maybe ten dollars and we have to give five for the sick leave paper.
Today, when we walk in we don't have to pay that because we can go into one of the public centres where it is now free. It means that is twenty something dollars save on each medical visit. That means something comrades.
It is exactly the same way, sisters and brothers, in the area of the housing repair programme. The housing repair programme, as you know, is a programme that has been brought to benefit the poorest section of our working people, brought to benefit our Agricultural workers, our road workers and our workers in the banana pools and you know since the revolution over eleven thousand two hundred people have received benefits from this housing repair programme. Eleven thousand two hundred people; that is well over eleven percent of our population. That means that one in every nine Grenadians in one form or another benefit directly from the housing repair programme.
FANTASTIC HOUSING REPAIR PROGRAMME
I can tell you, sisters and brothers, that sometimes when we talk to people coming from other islands and we tell them about this housing repair programme some of them have difficulty in believing in what we are saying because they don't understand how one thousand dollars worth of material can be given to a poor family to fix their house and all the family has to pay back is five dollars a month or two dollars and fifty cents a fort-night. Five dollars a month means sixty dollars a year you pay back over ten years so sixty dollars by ten years means you pay back six hundred after ten years and what you got was one thousand dollars, no interest charged and four hundred out of the one thousand dollars is given back as a gift by the government to the person. Six hundred over ten years, two dollars and fifty cents a fort-night, five dollars a month. So a worker today, for example, after the new increases that the comrades got for the Agricultural workers last year is now eight dollars and fifty cents a day for the men. By the time we take out the usual deductions for union dues and savings and what not seventy-five cents comes out so that really means you talking about seven dollars and seventy-five cents in your hand over a ten-day fort-night, that means seventy-seven dollars and fifty cents a fortnight. Now, out of that seventy-seven dollars and fifty cents it is only two dollars and fifty cents in the fort-night coming out for the one hundred dollars repairs. In other words, you still have seventy-five dollars.
Now just before I left town I was speaking with Cde. Wayne Sandiford, Chairman of the National Emulation Committee and we were talking about this house repair programme and we tried to see what would be the real cost to a worker if they have to go to a bank to borrow the one thousand dollars so I rang up all the banks and I spoke to all the senior people in the banks and I asked a very simple question. I said
"Supposing an Agricultural worker comes to your bank and knocks on your door and says he wants to borrow one thousand dollars for housing repair, what would be the position?".
I want to give as clearly as I can the answer I got. He said:
"First of all, if an agricultural worker comes to my bank for a one thousand dollar I would want to know what his collateral is, what security he has if he has. If he has a deed some way under he bed and if he don't have no deed under the bed he would have to tell me he could go by a friend who have a deed under the bed who willing to lend me the deed so I hold it for my one thousand dollars because as you know, brother Bish, I in this thing for money. I in this for money to make profit".
So I say, I understand what you saying, continue:
"If the worker can't sign security for the loan, end of story," said the banker, "He can't get the loan". That is the first thing the man told me.
"Second thing even if the man is to find somebody land paper to borrow the one thousand dollars because they talking about a small amount of money I charging my full amount of interest, twelve and a half percent per month and I giving them one year to pay it back. I know PRG talking about ten years and thing, Ha Ha Ha. But that is all you problem. I looking for money and for me I charging twelve and a half percent and I want one year to pay back".
So I said "Break it down for me, what does that mean in dollars and cents"?
He told me that for a one thousand dollar loan at twelve and a half per cent interest with one year to pay back he wants eighty-nine dollars and nine cents every month. You get your bank paper or you borrow your friend's bank paper, you get the one thousand dollars new but you have to pay back eighty-nine dollars and nine cents a month for the twelve months. At the end of the year you would have paid back one thousand sixty-eight dollars and ninety-nine cents in one year.
Comrades, I want you to pause and think about this eighty-nine dollars and nine cents a month which means, if my mathematics is still good, forty-four dollars and fifty-four cents every two weeks, every fort-night. My arithmetic is good there? If you remember we said that the workers who gets eighty dollars and fifty cents a day takes out seventy-five cents for deduction would at the end of the fort-night be getting seventy-seven dollars and fifty cents in his hands. You remember that piece of maths. Now out of that seventy-seven dollars and fifty cents, forty-four dollars and fifty-four cents will have to come out if he wants to get that loan from the bank. Seventy-seven dollars and fifty cents minus forty-four dollars and fifty cents leaves thirty-three dollars in his hand for ten days.
Now instead of the forty-four dollars coming out only two dollars and fifty cents coming out under the government loan. Sisters and brothers do I make myself clear? Is it clear?
TWICE AS MUCH
It is important to understand what I am trying to say. Now you see I did this part of mathematics, not because I like maths but because I really want to get the point across. I really want brothers and sisters to understand what we mean in a concrete way when we say that our people living in Grenada no matter what they are actually getting in their hands when the week ends or the month ends or the fort-night ends in practice they are getting twice as much as people living in neighbouring islands because they don't have to pay for the Doctor or the injection or the sick leave paper because they don't have to pay to send their child to secondary school because if their child is bright enough to become a Doctor they could get a free university scholarship. They don't pay for that item. Because the price of sugar and the price of cement and the price of the rice, the price of all those things are cheaper than the other islands with one or two exceptions: In Trinidad sugar is cheaper than Grenada because Trinidad produces sugar but in Grenada it is cheaper than Dominica, St. Lucia, Montserrat, St. Vincent and so on. Its important to understand that sisters and brothers because what that means is that money you don't nave to dip in your cloth, for you don't have to dip in your pocket and pull out for that money now goes aside automatically.
RUNNING THE HOUSE
But comrades if everything is free: health care, education, etc then who is going to pay for it? Somebody has to pay. It is just like if you running your house. You let me give another example. The average family in Grenada has about five children. Some in the country areas have seven and eight. But you have a wife and the children and yourself, all in the house and that every month between the two of you $250 - $300, let us say, comes in. Now what do you do? You sit down and you work out in your head:
"Well every month is $300 between me and the wife. I have six children here, four of them still in school, two just leave school and just starting to work but they playing man they gone out and leave us so I still have to fight up with the four children. These four children have to go to school. That means school books, it means uniforms, it means shoes., it means bus. It means all kinds of things. These children when they come home from school toll me that they are hungry and I have to find food for them".
WORKING OUT THE FAMILY BUDGET
In other words, you have to sit down in your house with your wife and work out how much of the $300 every month you putting aside for what. How much for rum, if that is a priority. You see I put rum first. I do that for spite, how much for food, how much for clothes, how much for shoes, how much to try to patch up the roof, how much to try to keep the curtain in the room separating me and my wife from the children so they can't peep at me all night. How much for the broken glass window. What can I afford to spend every month. What I can't afford to spend. If you know it is $300 you have and when you put down all of that on paper it comes up to $400 tell me what you going to do.
You only have three things you could do that I know off. If I wrong tell me. First, you could borrow; go by a bank, go by a Nenen or a Macume and say, "Well things well hard. Ah begging you please lend me the hundred nuh man, please". And if they say "Yes", you still have to work how you are going to pay it back and when if they say "No", well chupul (sic) you have to go back home but in any event you try to borrow. That is one thing.
CUTTING YOUR CORNERS
A second thing you could do is to cut back. You will say, "Really them children really need two dress yuh know but we can't afford it we go have to go one. Really and truly ah really need another tall boots yuh know but ah can't afford ah go ha to patch up this one still and put another piece of cardboard in this patch up one". In other words, you cut your corners and you come down. Yes.
A third area you could use is to go out and try to find another job. You could steal but everybody knows if you go out and steal there are consequences in that because when you catch a thief you jail that thief, not so? Or you could take that chance too but in any event while a government would talk about raising production ("Let us produce more") while a government could talk about cutting back ("Let us spend less") a government can't talk about stealing, you know. Because where does government steal from? There's nothing to steal from nobody so even if you have a government that wants to steal in that way that particular area is not open to them.
WE MUST BALANCE THE BOOKS
Now I want you to see this whole budget and this whole economy in that kind of way. Like if it is you with your wife and your children is your own house because if you don't see it that way you will miss the essence of the point. A government has to balance books just like any family has to balance books. We have to total up how much we are going to spend each year to fix roads, to buy drugs for the hospital, to buy X-Ray machine for the hospital and so on and we have to put down on paper how many workers the government has, how much a day they are working for, how much a week, how much a month, what the total bill is, how much trucks the country needs, how much tractors the country needs, how much oil the country needs, how much gas, how much cement, how much sugar. Put all that down and then balance and just like in a normal family when they don't balance you bust. Simple as that. That is the other reason, sisters and brothers, production is so important.
BIG SAVINGS ON X-RAYS
I mentioned health. You know the other day we were doing a little exercise in the Ministry of Health and one of the things we discovered was that most X-Rays people get cost either three dollars or six dollars but you know what the real cost of every X-Ray is? The real cost is S43. I want you to stop and think about that one too any time you go and lie down below the X-Ray machine in the hospital and the sister does all her fancy things and click and then pull out the picture, you are paying three or six dollars. The real cost is $43 and if you living next door in Trinidad the same X-Ray cost over $100. Over here is three. Any time you not feeling so well and the doctor tell you they want you to take a check and they send you to the laboratory and they juck your finger and they take out the blood to do a blood test or a urine test or whatever, most of those tests cost one dollar in Grenada. Same cost three. One or two of the most difficult types cost five. But for all of them the real value is between $15 and $40. Government has to pay the rest.
Last year 12,000 people (for prescription) although there were over a 150,000 written prescriptions. Why? Because very often people don't pay at all and when they pay the average you pay is 36¢. The real cost is about twenty times that. It is between five and seven dollars for the real cost of the drug. So sisters and brothers, I want you to understand all of these points.
SOMEBODY HAS TO PAY
Somebody has to pay for all of that. What we are trying to say through this emulation programme is that all of us must pay for that. Together, all of us must show it is our responsibility. All of us must understand that even the little 37.75 a day or the $300 or $400 A month, whatever it is, you have to Give back a certain amount for that in value. Otherwise, we wasting time. We cannot have square peg in round hole or round peg in square hole anymore.
We can't have people just sand-dancing and brambling, playing they working and doing no work anymore. We can't have people from the time they reach to work they watch the clock until they leave three o'clock and then they cross their legs or uncross them for the next period of time. We can't t have those who in between looking at the clock they running to toilet every two minutes like if they just take a dose of salts. That is just bramble, a way to avoid their work. All of that have to stop.
END THE OTHER BADISMS
Just like how on the international front our country is now famous because we take good, firm stands and we say, "end imperialism", "end the rule with the big companies". We say, "end colonialism, end the domination of the poor small countries by the rich big ones." We say, "end backyardism". So too on our local front we haste to say a number of things like that. We have to say, "end clock watchism, and mamagyism, end papyshowism, end bramblingism, end the toiletism, end lazyism and let us, start to really work hard together. Let us start to produce more because that is the only way this country is going to go forward".
GET OUT WHAT YOU PUT IN
It is not magic. If we don't put in we'll never be able to take out. It is a very, very true saying: You must put in something to take out something back. So, comrades, what I want to end and to leave you all with as clearly as I can make the point and as hard as I can make it: No country, no economy can go forward unless the people collectively are willing to put more into it, are willing to work harder, are willing to be more disciplined, are willing to produce more. If we don't do that we will not be able to get the money to pay for all the benefits and services that we get right now. We will not be able to do it. We cannot expect every year to cry, "Ah want me money to go up". But when somebody comes and says, "Let me take a look at exactly what you doing", you say, "Na that is not your business".
You know it is like the joke which Cde. Coard gave in the Dome during the report on the economy. When we went to Carriacou the other day we found one name that was getting money for the last ten years and nobody could remember what this man doing. So we checked and discovered the man is down in the books as a stockman, meaning that he looks after cattle. So we go out to where this stockman is supposed to be living and the man was there in truth, living in a government house for the last ten years. The only thing is that he was paid every month as a stockman, living in this government house but he have no stock, no cattle, not even one cow.
NO WORK YET VACATION TOO
So we say, "Well comrade what really going en here. You getting pay for ten years now. How long this thing happen?" He replied, "Well, about a few years now the last cattle died and nobody check on me so ah drawing still." And we say, "Well look, we go have to put you in a new area of work because we can't have a man just drawing money every month living in a free house, say he is a stockman for cattle without cattle", and he said, "If all you transfer me is ok but I want to apply for my vacation first, please".
Just think, comrades, a man work for ten years without doing work. He want his vacation before he takes the new work. And that is a true story. That is the kind of attitude some of our sisters and brothers have: That the would owes them a living, that the state owes them a living but they don't want to measure what they doing against how much they getting and it can't work so, sisters and brothers.
WE NOT WORKING MAGIC
If our salary is $300 a month we have to be able to measure it and make sure we putting in $300 back otherwise the country must burst. Simple as that. Likewise, comrades just have to understand that the only way the free health and the free education and the free milk and the road programme and the water programme and everything else could continue is if people are paying tax because that is how the government gets the money to spend through the taxes the government collects from the pay of the workers and the businesses in the country. That is how the money comes.
It is not magic. Because we don't have oil. We don't have gold. We don't have diamonds or bauxite. I remember once a man had claimed to find oil in Queens Park but nobody else ever find it. So we don't have any of those things and that means, therefore, that we have to set out and it is those taxes that will have to provide those services and we have to understand that very carefully, sisters and brothers.
I want to end by also saying to you all that there is a very big difference why today we can afford to do all of these things without having to worry. Let us be honest about it and let us admit that compared to workers in any other parts of the world the Grenadian worker is not a hard worker: Only when he takes the boat and he lands in somebody else country.
I see Grenadian workers in England with my own eyes. I lived there for a few years when I was studying. I see Grenadian workers in America and Canada, in Trinidad and in Venezuela and there is no other worker that could make more pieces and make night into day then Grenadian workers when they leave the island and they have to fight up on their own outside. But let us also be honest inside the country.
The Grenadian worker, by the standard of serious workers in other countries is not a hard worker. You want to prove that? Take a trip down to the International Airport at Point Salines and watch the 24-hour a day shift going on there and watch how mud does disappear and how fast cement does turn down and how fast whole hills does disappear. Check it out.
OUT OF THE ASHES THROUGH HARD WORK
You want to prove that? Have a close hard look at these countries that were destroyed in the last world war. Today, they have been able to come back out of the ashes because of extra work and seriousness and determination of their workers.
How in the old days under Gairy nobody who is serious could expect a worker to really work hard. Why? If you were an agricultural worker and you working hard and you pruning banana and you under the cocoa every day fighting up trying to make sure that cocoa pod come up right and you watching the nutmeg every day and so on and when the week ends you see a big truck come up on the estate full up with half of the things and drive down to Gold Room and Silver Room and Pink Room and you say: "Why I must work hard? If I working hard and somebody else coming and thiefing what I work for no point I killing myself". Or likewise, if when you working hard you know at the same time the police are being paid to terrorise your children, to flush their heads down toilets and make them eat cockroaches, why work hard. In other words, under the kind of system we inherited we could understand why people were not prepared to work.
But today when you work hard what does it mean in real terms. First of all, corruption is over in this country. You wouldn't find no truck coming up on no estate and filling up with the produce of workers and any time you find that let us know. I guarantee today that that person will take an immediate jail. Guaranteed. So the corruption is over. This is the only government in the entire Caribbean that not one of them could say has any corruption. The only one. Every other one every day in some scandal. This one thief that. That thief the other. That one hide a tractor. Some of them people thiefing plane. This is the only government in the Caribbean you can't make that charge against.
Secondly, when the workers today work and produce they understand now that at the end of the year there is something called profit-sharing. So if they work and they produce and the profit is made you share in the profit.
NO CORRUPTION IN THIS COUNTRY
And some workers In this pavilion have, in fact, shared in profits. Other have shared in production bonuses, where there was More production even though a profit was not made. So a worker understands that when he sweats and works, when he stops watching the clock, when he makes sure that the estate in fact, makes a profit, that all the profit doesn't just disappear into some treasury but one-third is kept back for the workers. That's a very important thing.
A third reason, sisters and brothers, workers in Grenada today understand that when their money is taken in taxes and from their hard work, not only is there [no] corruption, but apart from that they can see the benefits with the new International Airport. They can see the benefits with the greater attempts at water distribution in the country. They can see the benefits with the East Coast Highway from St. Paul's through St. David's that is being built right now. They can see the benefits with the Free Health and the Free Education and the Free Milk. They can see the benefits that they get from their money because the money is being used in a constructive way.
I want to give you a fourth reason today you can work with confidence. When workers today work harder, they know for the first time they have the chance of sitting down with their leaders and talking to them lace to face, raising questions with them, making them answer questions and giving them the chance of being involved in what is being built in the country. That is the new democracy that we are talking about today. I mean in the old days, or in any other island in the Caribbean today, is there any place where when a budget is about to be presented that thousands of workers sit down together and discuss that Budget? Is there one other island in the Caribbean where that is being done?
UNIQUE IN THE CARIBBEAN
Is there any place where you sit down and you say this is how much money we earning for the year, this is how much we have to spend for the year. We want your ideas. Is there any other country in the Caribbean where hundreds of zonal council meetings are taking place right now? Dozens sometimes in one week where ordinary, working people are going to get a little look on the economy and sitting down there and then and discussing the economy? Where else is that happening? So the workers know that when they work harder, they have a right to make a contribution and to put an input.
The workers know that secrecy is over in all government institutions. They have a right to see the books when they want to see the books and any overseer or manager who hiding the books, we will make sure he stops hiding them. You have a right to see the books, you have a right to discuss the books, you have a right to set targets of what you feel you could achieve in a month, you have a right to see if it is likely you are going to make a profit before the year ends.
And if it is not so likely you have a right to set new targets after discussion. I'm saying democratic participation and involvement, implementation of decisions, so you have responsibility, you have accountability, you also have the right to recall those who are playing the fool. That is real democracy. And that means, sisters and brothers, you all have a right to help to shape how this country is going to look in the future. That is why we are going into this emulation business, I want to say again, because through emulation, through friendly competition, through prizes and awards, through recognising every month the best workers we feel we will get more production out of all comrades.
MARCH 13TH COMING STRONG
Let we finally end this time by saying one last thing. March 13th coming and this March 13th will be the biggest and the best ever. Already, we expecting plane loads of people, coming from places like Canada, America, England, possibly, one from Holland also. We expect to get a number of really distinguished guests coming in for this festival. There will be many netball teams and football teams and what not coming from neighbouring islands to take part in competition against our people. Boxing teams also. There is going to be the usual cultural groups, so far from Jamaica, from Barbados, from Cuba and certainly one or two others, we expect. Probably, same of the Trinidad calypsonians who have indicated an interest. We are trying to negotiate that. In other words, this March 13th will be the biggest and the best.
BIG MACO DANCE
On Sunday, 7th March  - International Women's Day Rally in Gouyave. On the 8th of March there will be an emulation for the first Ministeries (sic) on the Carenage in St. George's, where the first workers of the month are going to be recognised in public on the Carenage. Also during that period we are going to have the budget and the National Plan presented, probably in the Dome. We are also in that period going to have the opening of the Transmitter - Radio Free Grenada Transmitter. We are also in that period going to have the new Asphalt Plant opened, and on the 11th of March we will celebrate the 8th Anniversary of our glorious Party, the New Jewel Movement. And for that one we plan to have a real big maco dance right down in town. Every body of course coming down to that dance. In other words, this March 13th, sisters end brothers, will be the hardest hard, as the youths would say, hardest hard and de badest bad. And, of course, this weekend coming up, Julien Fedon 3rd Anniversary National Manoeuvres and again we looking forward to the sisters and brothers who are in the Militia to turn out. Its going to be three very exciting days of Militia activity. A lot of action is planned during that militia manoeuvre and on Sunday right here on this spot, around late Sunday morning probably we'll be having one of the ceremonies and then we have the big motorcade through the west coast to reach the town to have a second ceremony in town for that National Manoeuvre.
So, comrades a lot of action and obviously you expected to participate in all of this. But most important I want to leave you with this here again: we own this country, we have to make sure this country pays for itself, we have to make sure this country produces enough to keep the benefits that we have won already and to bring more benefits in the future. We, therefore, have to be involved in building this country. We have to learn to work harder, learn to be more disciplined, we have to learn to receive more training on the job, we have to learn to take orders when we are on the job, we have to make sure nobody engages in corruption on the job. We have to establish these production committees and these emulation committees at every workplace which will make sure that as one people we can go forward in the words of our slogan this year "WORK HARDER, PRODUCE MORE, BUILD GRENADA".
LONG LIVE THE WORKING PEOPLE OF FREE GRENADA!
LONG LIVE THE TRADE UNION MOVEMENT OF FREE GRENADA!
LONG LIVE THE FARMERS OF FREE GRENADA!
LONG LIVE THE GRENADA REVOLUTION!
FORWARD EVER! FORWARD EVER! FORWARD EVER!