CARIBBEAN STAKEHOLDERS CONSIDER FUTURE OF ACP IN GRENADA—11/02/13
The future of the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of countries is being debated by stakeholders from governments, the private sector, and civil society at a two-day meeting in Grenada. The ACP Eminent Persons Group (EPG) is sponsoring the event, which is designed to discuss the region’s opinions about “re-inventing” ACP so that it can become a player on the world stage and enter into a new partnership with the European Union when the old pact expires in 2020.
INDEPENDENCE CELEBRATED IN ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA—11/03/13
Antigua and Barbuda has celebrated 32 years of political independence from Britain in 2013. According to Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer, the anniversary offers an opportunity for the country to reflect on its role in the regional integration movement. The nation’s liberal immigration policy and labor market have resulted in a population profile that includes people from many foreign lands.
GOVERNMENTS IN CARIBBEAN ENDANGERED BY DONATED COMPUTERS—11/04/13
Several governments in the Caribbean have received personal computers as donations from foreign governments in recent years. Now, there are reports that secret modifications made to the computers’ hardware could mean potential security risks for their users. According to Australian news reports, computers made by Lenovo, a Chinese firm, have been banned by intelligence agencies worldwide because of hardware exploits included by the manufacturer. Canadian researchers also reported infiltration of computers by an electronic spy network based in China.
CARIBBEAN NATIONS SHOULD ENCOURAGE GOVERNMENTS TO SUPPORT CCJ—11/05/13
Queens Counsel Emile Ferdinand is urging citizens of Caribbean countries to influence their governments toward a full support of the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ). Ferdinand made his remarks during a lecture on the court at a meeting of the St. Kitts and Nevis Bar Association. He said it was discouraging to see some governments in the Caribbean region hesitate to support the FFC, despite the fact they make financial contributions to its operations.
FACTORY TO HELP PEANUT FARMERS IN HAITI—11/06/13
A nonprofit organization founded by Dr. Paul Farmer, a pioneer in public health, in partnership with Abbott Laboratories, a health care firm, have opened a factory that will produce a nutritional supplement in Haiti. The plant, which comprises 18,000 square feet, is located in Haiti’s Central Plateau, and it will be making “Nourimanba,” a product used to treat malnutrition in children. The main ingredient in the product is peanuts, which are grown by farmers in Haiti. A pilot program is designed to support some 300 farmers in improving the quality and quantity of the peanuts they supply, and increase their incomes as well.
JAPAN WANTS MORE EMBASSIES IN THE CARIBBEAN—11/07/13
According to Eri Matsui, the deputy director of the Caribbean Division of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Japan, his country wants to enhance its relationships in the Caribbean by opening more embassies. Currently Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago are the only nations in the region to have Japanese embassies; these embassies will celebrate 50 years of operation in 2014. Matsui says he wants to introduce more Caribbean cultures to Japan, as well as introduce Japanese culture to Caribbean countries.
FISHERMEN IN WESTMORELAND GIVEN LESSONS IN CHOLERA PREVENTION—11/05/13
The Westmoreland Health Department and Sandals Whitehouse are partnering to provide fishers with education about how to prevent cholera. The initiative was prompted by an outbreak of the disease in Cuba and a growing threat to other islands in the Caribbean. The education presentations cover causes, symptoms, life span of the cholera bacteria, the conditions that cause the bacteria to multiply, risk factors for contracting the disease, and ways to prevent and control it.
PRESS ASSOCIATION WELCOMES REFORM OF JAMAICA’S LIBEL LAW—11/06/13
Media organizations and the Jamaica Press Association are pleased that the country’s libel law has been overhauled. The press has complained for some time about the problems and cost associated with fighting libel lawsuits. Some in the profession say that stories have been quashed due to the risk of being sued for high damages. The new defamation act amends libel and slander laws, removing criminal libel and allowing local media to use reports from external sources without checking their accuracy first.
GORDON-HARRISON CALLS FOR STREET CHILDREN TO BE COUNTED—11/07/13
Diahann Gordon-Harrison, a children’s advocate, is calling for a national census of street children to be mad. She says that because the actual numbers of these children are not known, appropriate interventions cannot be developed. Data collected from the census should be classified by parish, age, gender, and the circumstances that forced the children to take to the streets.
INDECOM: POLICE INVESTIGATING KILLINGS BY OTHER COPS VIOLATES LAW—11/08/13
According to Terrence Williams, the Commissioner of the Independent Commission of Investigations (INDECOM), it is a violation of Jamaica’s constitution for members of the police force to investigate killings by other police officers. Williams says that when the police alone are the investigators, it is a breach of the right to life. Williams made his remarks in response to Peter Bunting, National Security Minister, who asked if such investigations represented a constitutional breach.