We all charge account and we appetite it to be fast and inexpensive. Some of us appetite it to be affable too and acknowledging to our every need. For any accustomed account in The Bahamas – and in Nassau in accurate – we would be advantageous to get two out of four.
I spent the aftermost three canicule aggravating to complete two tasks — switching my buzz cardinal from one account provider to addition and tracking bottomward my complete immunisation record. Afterwards the aboriginal day of bootless attempts, I asked myself why I had anticipation it would be accessible in the aboriginal place.
Government offices are belled for abounding things, from abortion to acknowledgment phones to accident all of the advice they ask us to provide. We all, at some point, accept to go to a government appointment as allotment of a activity we cannot avoid. We charge passports, business licenses, bearing certificates, and civic allowance cards. Depending on the affidavit we already accept and the cardinal of times we accept gone through the activity before, we may charge to appointment assorted offices to get one item.
For me, the ambiguous certificate is my complete immunisation record. My paediatrician had best of the information, but best does not cut it for my accustomed purpose. I visited the schools I abounding and, while they did their best to assist, I accept not activate all the information.
Inquiry afterwards inquiry, all anchorage advance to the Baillou Hill Road Clinic. Some bodies say the dispensary will alone accept my annal if I visited clinics before, but others say clandestine doctors submitted their annal to the clinic, so it is all there. They all said alike if the Baillou Hill Road Dispensary did not accept my records, it would be the alone abode to accord me the vaccines missing from the certificate I have.
I accept been brash to be in band at the dispensary by 7am today if I appetite to get it done. I am abiding I had every vaccine adapted as a adolescent and I apperceive it was bare for enrolment in school, but I do not accept the evidence. I will absolutely be accepting a few vaccines today, aloof to move things along.
In talking about this with accompany and ancestors members, I heard several belief about long, difficult processes that could be beneath and easier with the advice of technology. From accepting to address a baseborn agent twice, to assorted visits to accomplish an appliance due to misinformation on requirements, we decay too abundant time.
What if the Elizabeth Estates Dispensary could see the Baillou Hill Road Clinic’s records? What if the authorization appointment could admission the agent general’s records? What if they digitally archived annal the aboriginal time they accept them? We would not accept to drive or booty the bus to assorted locations in chase of one document. We would not accept to accomplish requests, wait, and pay for the aforementioned abstracts every few years. We can abridge these processes. Lines could be shorter, and citizens could be beneath stressed.
All we charge to do is centralise the information, appropriately alternation advanced band staff, advance the arrangement and advise citizens how to admission accessible casework in the new, accessible way.
Is Account Bahamas coming?
When activity through a activity like applying for a authorization face-lifting in 2018, it can feel like the one-stop-shop is decades away, but it does not accept to be. The Civic Development Plan — Vision 2040 — has a breadth alleged “One Window Approach for Government”. It proposes the conception of a new bureau to accomplish it easier for citizens to accomplish affairs and admission accessible casework in-person, online, and by buzz while abbreviation the cardinal of advanced band agents at assorted ministries. This new agency, Account Bahamas, would accept a account of casework it provides and the Civic Development Plan accurately mentions bloom insurance, drivers’ licence, and abode permits. The needs are detailed, from agents training on account commitment to adapted legislation.
The Civic Development Plan is now in its additional abstract and over 600 pages long. The certificate is the artefact of years of assignment by a competent team. It is affiliated to the Sustainable Development Goals and not alone outlines actions, by outlines the outputs and accustomed outcomes. It responds to abounding of the apropos we, citizens and residents, accession on a circadian basis.
Unfortunately, it has not been discussed in a connected time. It is cryptic whether or not this administering is accidentally absorbed in the plan, abundant beneath committed to any allotment of it. Is it activity to be like the hundreds of proposals we apprehend about that were submitted to the government over the accomplished few decades, alone to aggregate dust? Fortunately, we apperceive the Civic Development Plan exists. The plan, however, is annihilation after action. We accept to appeal that action. We accept to appeal bigger service, aloof as we appeal it of clandestine entities.
Private breadth service
While abroad, I did not use my Bahamian corpuscle buzz service. It has never formed anywhere else, and I accept SIM cards I use for travel. Managing assorted SIM cards is easier and beneath big-ticket than spending hours arguing about adrift and associated charges. To ensure I did not lose my Bahamian corpuscle number, I connected to top-up online. On my arrival, I approved to accomplish a alarm to affirm that my Bahamasair flight was on time and I would be accessible for auto soon. No network. No amount what I did, I could not get a alarm out.
When I got to a landline, I alleged the aggregation to explain the situation. The adumbrative told me my buzz was inactive. I gave her the dates of my top-ups and she a me that if the buzz was not in use, I would accept bare to top it up with a buzz agenda to accumulate the service.
Even speaking with her and accouterment all of my advice was not enough. She insisted that I bare to buy a buzz agenda and administer it in adjustment to restore service. I reminded her that buzz cards accept been harder to appear by aback the aggregation started phasing them out and I accept no abstraction breadth to get one. She told me she did not apperceive breadth I could get one either. I told her that was unacceptable, so she asked what breadth I was in. I said I was in the east, and she started administering me to a abundance on JFK. That was day one of a seven-day saga.
Other assembly accept aback absolved some of the claims fabricated by the aboriginal being I batten with on the phone, but there is acutely a botheration with advice and compassionate of aggregation action and ability of casework and locations.
At one of the locations, addition approved to argue me that I bare to buy a buzz agenda to alter my SIM card, and because they alone had $20 cards and admixture cards, I should buy the admixture agenda and pay VAT on its value. I bidding my agnosticism that the admixture agenda would alike work. Assembly insisted that it would work, but would not accomplish to giving me a acquittance if it did not work. I was after told, at addition location, the agenda would not accept worked.
Tired of the aback and forth, carriage about a SIM agenda that did not work, I absitively to about-face companies. Unfortunately, I still had to go through the SIM agenda backup activity because the new aggregation bare it to accelerate a argument bulletin for porting. What I absolutely capital to do was acquaint them to balloon it.
I bethink bodies aloof about the account industry in The Bahamas. “Second to none,” they acclimated to say. We do not accept it any more. We are generally fed up afore we alike begin.
Have you anytime larboard your abode already balked by the acquaintance you accept you are activity to have? Poor account is expected. Sadly, it is additionally accepted. We argue ourselves that there is annihilation we can do about it a from accepting loud on the band or accusatory on Facebook. Business do not alike try to absorb customers. Government casework are alike beneath bothered.
I can not advice buy admiration what the account — accessible and clandestine — would attending like if we were all advised like tourists. One day we will adulation ourselves abundant to appeal and accord anniversary added better.
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