THIS WEEK”S SUMMARY
POLICE TO CHARGE SPORTS FIGURE FOLLOWING RAIDS IN MONTEGO BAY—03/30/13
Jamaica’s Major Organized Crime Anti-Corruption Task Force (MOCA) reports that a well-known sports figure will likely face charges arising from police-military operations in Montego Bay. While the name of the figure was not released, the operations targeted individuals believed to be linked to the lottery scam. According to MOCA, a considerable amount of cash was seized at a cambio operated by Tarick Bucknor, one of those detained in the operations.
UNDER NDX, HOUSING AGENCY FACED REDUCTION IN BOND PRICES—03/31/13
Jamaica’s National Housing Trust (NHT) was among the agencies most impacted by the government’s decision to cut $45.8 billion from its budget over the coming four years. Accounts at NHS have also seen reductions due to its participation in the National Debt Exchange (NDX). The NHS saw its bond prices reduced by 20 percent.
NEW LEGISLATION DESIGNED TO DECRIMINALIZE DEFAMATION—04/01/13
The government of Jamaica plans to submit new legislation on defamation, which is designed to provide protection for journalists. According to Sandrea Falconer, Minister of Information, the new law will eliminate the difference between libel and slander. This will institute a single defamation cause and remove criminal libel law. Under the new rules, journalists will not be jailed for defamation.
WATER AGENCY NEEDS FUNDS TOTALING US$1.2 BILLION—04/02/13
According to the president of Jamaica’s National Water Agency (NWC), Albert Gordon, the agency requires US$1.2 billion in order to develop several water projects designed to create more drought-resistant systems, as well as to ensure an adequate supply of water for Jamaican residents. A number of plans are in the works to minimize the impact of future droughts in the country.
JAMAICAN PRIME MINISTER CONGRATULATES NEW PRESIDENT OF WICB—04/03/13
Portia Simpson Miller, Jamaica’s Prime Minister, has congratulated Whycliffe “Dave” Cameron on his election as president of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB). Simpson Miller said that Jamaica and the Caribbean region expect to see new developments and successes under the leadership of Cameron, himself a Jamaican.
MAURICE FACEY DIES—04/03/13
Maurice Facey, former director of the Gleaner newspaper and chairman of the Pan-Jam Group, died at the University Hospital of the West Indies in St. Andrews. He was director on many top Jamaican company boards and received many awards for contributions to Jamaica’s social development. He was a recipient of the Order of Jamaica and chairman of the Kingston Restoration Company Ltd. He was asked by former Prime Minister Michael Manley to head a committee to determine the feasibility of creating a National Gallery of Jamaica.
CLERGYMAN WANTS JAMAICA TO TURN AWAY FROM POPULIST POLITICS—04/04/13
The Reverend Dr. Howard Gregory, Bishop of Jamaica and the Cayman Islands, is urging leaders of Jamaica to keep the country from being drawn into difficult positions by following the path of political expediency. In a sermon given at the 143 Synod of the Church in Jamaica and the Cayman Islands, he said that “no appeal to populist policies” must allow the country to find itself in similar economic difficulties in the future.
GAS TO RISE BY $2.31—04/05/13
Jamaican motorists will pay more for gasoline as Petrojam announces an increase of $2.31 in price. A liter of E10-87 will sell for $110.29, and E10-90 will be sold for $111.94. The price of auto diesel oil will also rise by $2.50, selling for $112.42. Propane cooking gas will increase by 94 cents to $46.10 per liter.
JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
JAMAICANS IN U.S. FEEL HOPE ABOUT IMF DEAL, BUT REMAIN SKEPTICAL—04/01/13
As Jamaica moves forward toward a deal with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Jamaican national in the United States hope that the agreement will improve things in their home country. However, skepticism remains in the Jamaican community, with many wondering if the agreement will be a failure, given the history of past agreements in recent times. Jamaicans in the U.S. also realize that there is no alternative available to the nation’s government at this time.
JAMAICAN DIASPORA IMITATES JEWISH, AMERICAN DIASPORAL MODEL—04/02/13
According to Arnaldo Brown, MP of Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade of Jamaica in South Florida, the Jamaican Diaspora is following in the steps of the Jewish and American diasporas before it. Unlike these models, however, Brown noted that Jamaica has a long way to go before it can discuss absentee ballots to facilitate voting by those in the Diaspora who live abroad but are still citizens of Jamaica.
JAMAICAN WOMEN OF FLORIDA HOST MANLEY-DUNCAN—04/03/13
The Jamaican Women of Florida, an organization of Jamaican women and their friends, plans to host a fund-raising luncheon on April 19, 2013, where gender specialist and social activist Beverley Manley-Duncan will be the guest speaker. The group seeks to help the next generation of young women with its theme “Breaking Barriers – Building Bridges.” Manley-Duncan is well known and respected for blazing trails to advance women in Jamaica, the Caribbean region, and the world.
U.S. SENATOR HAS JAMAICAN WORKER PROBLEM—04/04/13
United States Senator Lindsay Graham of South Carolina has been criticized by conservative politicians for his efforts to ease the hiring of Jamaica workers at a country club via temporary work permits. Graham has said that he “begged” the U.S. Labor Department to permit the Kiawah Golf Club to have more temporary worker visas. Because of Graham, the club received 172 H-2B temporary worker permits for 2013, compared to 150 in 2012. Jamaicans are hired at minimum wage for service jobs at the club.
CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
CARIBBEAN COMEDY CENTRAL AIMING FOR CABLE TELEVISION—03/30/13
CARIBBEAN COUNTRIES LOOKING FOR OIL, BUT FEAR OIL SPILLS—03/31/13
TRANSPORTATION DEPARTMENT FINES AIRLINE FOR LONG DELAY ON TARMAC—04/01/13
SHIPPING FROM FLORIDA GULF COAST TO CARIBBEAN MADE EASIER—04/02/13
SEVEN DANCERS FROM CUBA DEFECT ON MEXICAN TOUR—04/03/13
COLLAPSE OF CARICOM NOT A GOOD SIGN—04/04/13
BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
JAMAICA TOUTING NEW HOTEL DEVELOPMENTS—04/01/13
Several new tourism developments, including more hotels and a new airlift, are set for implementation in the next two years in Jamaica. According to Wykeham McNeill, Minister of Tourism, there is considerable interest in room development. He expects to see new hotels constructed on the island in 2013, including a Courtyard Marriot in Kingston. The Riu will open a new hotel in Montego Bay, and Sunwing Group has taken over a property in Trelawny that they will rebrand, refurbish, and expand.
TECHNICAL EMPLOYEES AT LIME ON STRIKE—04/03/13
More than 200 unionized technical workers at LIME Jamaica, the telecommunications firm, are striking after the firm’s failure to attend a second scheduled meeting with union leaders and officials of Jamaica’s Ministry of Labor. LIME confirmed that the services of 305 support and delivery team workers will be terminated in May 2013 due to outsourcing of some operations to Ericsson, an international firm. The unions dispute this action, accusing LIME of breaching a Memorandum of Understanding signed in 2011 that stipulated no cuts in staffing.
JAMAICAN DELEGATION HOSTED BY DRYDOCKS WORLD IN DUBAI—04/04/13
The top Middle Eastern shipyard, Drydocks World, hosted representatives of Jamaica’s government headed by G. Anthony Hylton, the Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce. Drydocks World is involved in ship repair, conversion, new building, and offshore construction. The Jamaicans met with Khamis Jurna Buamim, chairman of Drydocks World and Maritime World, and were briefed on the organization and held discussions about areas in which future collaborations between the firm and Jamaica could occur.
SVL LIMITS TERMS FOR DIRECTORS—04/05/13
Supreme Ventures Limited (SVL) states that at a meeting on March 20, 2013, its board agreed to set a term limit of seven years for its independent directors. Additionally, the board set the age of retirement for directors at 70. The meeting also addressed the resignation of Winsome Minott as company secretary as of June 4, 2013, and that Prime Sports (Jamaica) Ltd. is now the subsidiary firm responsible for gaming operations.
CARIBBEAN TECHNOLOGY NEWS SUMMARY provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
PICKERSGILL PRAISES WORK OF ENVIRONMENTAL ORGANIZATION—03/31/13
STUDENTS SUFFER WITH NO WORKING COMPUTERS AT ST.GEORGE’S IN ST.ANN—04/03/13
SEISMIC EXPERT SAYS JAMAICA MUST PREPARE FOR A MAJOR EARTHQUAKE—04/04/13
NEW TECHNOLOGY CENTER OPENS IN ST. MARTIN—04/05/13
TANYA CARTER HAS NEW TAKE ON JAMAICAN MUSIC—03/30/13
Tanya Carter, a singer from Belize, is excited about her visit to Jamaica. The singer, who is popular in Belize, said she felt she had “plateaued” and that she had to “kick it up a notch.” Her visit to Jamaica gave her the inspiration she needed, she said. Coming to the place where real reggae music is, inspired her to record more music with producer Christopher Birch. Carter was introduced to reggae by her father and said it always reminds her of her carefree youth.
ZACHEOUS TRAVELS TO JAMAICA TO VISIT FAMILY—03/31/13
Zacheous Jackson, a British-born reggae singer with Jamaican parents, has traveled to Jamaica to introduce his music and to visit with family members. Jackson, 51, said he sees there is a difference in the quality of music currently being produced, with much reggae not “very educational or uplifting to youths.” He said it no longer deals with the heritage and culture of the Jamaican people. His goal is “to restore forgotten knowledge to a forgotten people” as stated in the Book of Hosea in the Bible.
DANCER MAGARITA TO BE HONORED FOR CONTRIBUTION TO JAMAICAN MUSIC—04/01/13
Margarita, a legendary rumba dancer who was killed on New Year’s Day in 1965, is one of the women to be honored by the University of Technology (UTech) for contributing to Jamaican music. The recognition ceremony will occur on April 11, 2013, at Papine campus. Margarita recorded only one song “Woman a Come” said Herbie Miller, curator at the Jamaica Music Museum, but there was more to her than being a dancer and the lover of Don Drummond. Killed by Drummond, Margarita was a victim of his mental illness. Miller recommended Margarita for recognition at the UTech ceremony.
“BETTER MUS’ COME” REPRESENTS NEW TIME FOR JAMAICAN FILM—04/02/13
The film “Better Mus’ Come” is the first feature made by its director Storm Saulter. The film is a love story set against the backdrop of the 1977 Green Bay Massacre in which five men supporting the Jamaica Labor Party were ambushed and killed outside Kingston by individuals who wanted to destabilize the political process. Jamaicans were outraged by the incident, and the island continues to suffer similar events, most recently in 2010 during a raid to find Christopher Coke. At least 73 people died in Tivoli Gardens during the raid. Saulter wanted to draw parallels between the two events and eras in his film, which has been described as opening a new moment in the island’s filmmaking sector.
JAMAICAN ATHLETES DRUG-TESTED BEFORE CARIFTA GAMES—03/31/13
Nine athletes from Jamaica have faced testing prior to the CARIFTA Games in the Bahamas. Five male and four female athletes competing in track and field were tested. Among the boys, Fredrick Dacres, Christoffe Bryan, Clive Pullen, Javon Francis, and Odail Todd were tested. Among females, Chrisann Gordon, Monique Spencer, Shericka Jackson and Simoya Campbell were tested.
BOLT MAKES TAX-FREE DEAL, WILL RUN TWO RACES IN LONDON—04/01/13
Usain Bolt, Jamaica’s sprint champion, has made a tax-free deal worth nearly J$75 million to compete in two races at the London Anniversary Games in July 2013. Bolt signed a contract that assures he will compete on both days of the Diamond League Grand Prix. Bolt has avoided running in British competitions because regulations in the United Kingdom made him liable for paying taxes on his endorsement earnings.
JAMAICA’S CARIFTA 4X400-METER TEAM DISQUALIFIED, REINSTATED—04/02/13
The Under 20 boys’ 4×400 meter squad was disqualified after winning the last race of the 42nd CARIFTA games in Nassau, Bahamas, but the team has since been reinstated and given its gold medals for the win. The award occurred following a strong protest by team management, who cited officials’ failure to raise a red flag signaling any infringement of rules at the race. There was also confusion concerning the kind of infringement. The team of Lennox Williams, Omar McLeod, Jevaughn Minzie and Javon Francis ran the distance in a record 3:05:68 seconds.
RILEY SAYS JAMAICAN ATHLETES “TARGETED” FOR DRUG TESTING AT CARIFTA—04/03/13
Although they dominated the CARIFTA Games in the Bahamas, Jamaica’s junior athletes did not have the best experience. According to the team’s head coach David Riley, team members were not assigned rooms until almost midnight and then required to do drug tests at 5:30 that morning. The drug testing went on throughout the meet, and most of the Jamaicans had to be tested frequently. Riley said the continuous testing of Jamaica’s athletes was unfortunate and that it did not appear to be random, since Jamaicans seemed “targeted” from the first.
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