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IMF Board clears way for Jamaica’s second drawdown of US$19.97 million

WEEK ENDING October 3, 2013

Dr Peter Phillips

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TCCF celebrates 13 years of service to sick Caribbean kids Page 2

From left: The Caribbean Children Foundation’s treasurer Harry Bridgemohan and its president Jay Brijpaul, share a light moment with Denise Herrera-Jackson, CEO of the Festival Management Committee/Scotiabank and Dawne Francois, Liaison Festival management during TCCF’s 13th Anniversary Angel Gala on Saturday at the Empire Banquet Hall in Toronto.

Guyanese movie ‘Brown Sugar too Bitter For Me’ mesmerises Toronto See story on Page 11


NEWS | week ending October 3, 2013

TCCF celebrates 13 years of service to sick Caribbean kids


From left: TCCF’s treasurer Harry Bridgemohan, president Jay Brijpaul along with Vanita Ganesh, Andrew Hilton and Javier Cedano, all of The BrijTeam making a contribution of $10,000 to TCCF

he Caribbean C h i l d r e n Foundation (TCCF) is currently celebrating 13 years of helping critically ill Caribbean children to get life-saving and lifealtering medical help, and to mark the occasion, a special event was held Saturday at the Empire Banquet Hall in

Toronto. After mixing, mingling and enjoying a very tasty island-hopping style dinner buffet, TCCF’s president Jay Brijpaul, updated the packed banquet hall on the Foundation’s fund-raising activities and gave a brief history of TCCF, from its humble beginnings to its

present status of being one of the most successful Caribbean charities, dedicated to helping the less fortunate children of the region. Later in the evening, his real estate organization, The Brij Team REMAX west, also presented a check of Cdn$10,000 to TCCF. ‘Jay,’ as he is popular-

ly known, reiterated that all of the funds collected go directly to the charity. There is no administration fee. Since TCCF started in 2000, it has helped over 55 children get the care they need. During this time, the organisation has raised and paid out over Cdn$1 million towards the cause. Although their primary healthcare partner is the Toronto Hospital for Sick Children, in the past, they have worked with a number of hospitals in Toronto, the USA and even Trinidad and Tobago, to get children to the care they require. While she could not be present, the Premier of Ontario, Kathleen Wynne, extended on behalf of the government of Ontario, warm greetings to everyone who attend the 13th Anniversary Angel Gala. She took the opportunity too to express thanks to the evening’s generous sponsors and donors and, indicated her admiration for the team of devoted volun-

teers, who work tirelessly to help critically ill children in the Englishspeaking Caribbean get medical treatment in Canada. In his address to the gathering, Director of SickKids International and Interim Director of the International Patient Program Raymond D. King, said SickKids was very enthusiastic about working in collaboration with TCCF for the advancement of children’s health in the Caribbean. Children from countries such as Trinidad and Tobago, Guyana, Jamaica, Barbados and

which TCCF is the beneficiary of this year’s fundraising. They both expressed their pride in being associated with TCCF and pledged their continued support for the selfless organization. In her presentation, vice president of TCCF Jankie Dolaram, who is also the hospital liaison, thanked all supporters of the charity and conveyed the gratitude of the recipients, who have been helped over the years. Additionally, the Consuls General from Guyana, St Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia and Trinidad and Tobago

TCCF’s vice president Jankie Dolaram, president Jay Brijpaul and K Persaud of MCPD making a generous donation to TCCF

Antigua have received specialized treatment in various medical specialties such as general surgery, orthopedics, urology, cardiology, ETN and plastic surgery. Also addressing the guests were the Honourable Jean Augustine PC, CMFairness Commissioner of Ontario, Denise Herrera-Jackson, CEO of the Festival Management Committee and producer of the Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival and the Annual Gala to

were present. After the formalities, the guests were treated to a spectacular performance of flamenco dancing staged by the Compania Carmen Romero with a live show that included dance, cantes, and flamenco guitarists. The rest of the evening included the presentations of various certificates of appreciation, door prizes and raffle. The evening ended early in the morning with the guests dancing to music by DJ Arjune and D.A.G.


week ending October 3, 2013 |


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Agriculture in the Caribbean


fter a 10-year hiatus, the Caribbean Week of Agriculture (CWA), which was launched back in 1999, is being hosted by Guyana October 4-12. The steering committee for the event is drawn from the agriculture ministry, the Caribbean Community (Caricom), the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA). The theme chosen for this edition of the CWA is, “Linking the Caribbean for Regional Food and Nutrition Security and Rural Development”. Coming as it does after the second high level meeting of financial experts in The Bahamas two weeks ago with the International Financial Institutions (IFIs), prime ministers, finance ministers and private sector leaders, one would hope this exercise would lead to some kind of activity that would filter down and help the ordinary citizen in the region. After all, the citizens of the Caribbean have become used to having their leaders meeting at the heads of government (HoG) meeting of Caricom annually for 40 years without achieving the goals of development that their predecessors had set. The meeting in The Bahamas, for instance, which had the theme, “Building Growth into the Caribbean Sustainability Agenda”, followed a previous meeting almost a year ago and covered pretty much the same ground. In that meeting, it was unanimously agreed that “economic growth” should be on the top of the agenda for Caribbean policymakers. The keynote speaker tried to be more specific and proposed that to achieve such growth the focus must be “export led”. None of this was earth shattering since this has been the quest and the mechanism used to pursue it since Emancipation in 1834. Exportled growth has delivered freedom from poverty in almost every country that achieved “emerging economy” status since 1945. Just three months before that 2012 meeting of financial and economic experts, the same group plus others from the British and European aid agencies, had sponsored another meeting with the same goal of “saving” the Caribbean through “sustainable development”. It led to an organisation called the Caribbean Growth Forum (CGF). Chapters were formed in 12 territories and more meetings were held, with a follow up grand meeting at the very same hotel in The Bahamas that was to host the second IFIs high level meeting. In their deliberations and conclusions, CGF agreed that “growth” is the key to solving our problems–but with no specific path proposed. In the meantime, the European Union (EU) had also announced in Guyana last month that their “aid” of nearly €1 billion was going to facilitate the Aid for Trade (AfT) initiative of the World Trade Organisation (WTO). This initiative for securing our development was premised on the argument that trade is the key to development and that the region had to be “prepared” for trading. The only problem was, as some pointed out, trade takes place in two directions and the preparation might bring more goods into the region (imports) than send out (exports). Once again there was a lack of specificity as to exactly what the region was supposed to export and how they would be assisted. We now return to the hosting of CWA during what is also Guyana’s Agriculture Month. We would like to suggest that as a country in which agriculture is still a significant segment of the economy, citizens should take the bull by the horns and call on the other governments of Caricom to put their money where their mouths are, as far as agriculture is concerned. From the launching of Caricom in 1973, food security has been on our agenda. The Jagdeo Initiative that was accepted as the way forward towards achieving food security has been allowed to wither on the vine. It must be returned to the table and pursued, rather than wasting time with empty and costly rhetoric that gets us nowhere.

(From left) St Vincent and the Grenadines’ Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves, Antigua and Barbuda’s Prime Minister Baldwin Spencer and Guyana’s Head of State Donald Ramotar share a happy moment during the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York last week. (A&B gov’t photo)

Family farming plays key role in food security in Caribbean I n the face of restrictions on using new land for agriculture, Latin America and the Caribbean can produce more food by increasing the sector’s productivity– and family farming can play a key role in this aim, according to a report presented at the recent 2013 Meeting of Ministers of Agriculture of the Americas in Buenos Aires. The document, “The Outlook for Agriculture and Rural Development in the Americas 2014: A Perspective on Latin America and the Caribbean”, was jointly produced by the Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC), the Regional Office for Latin America and the Caribbean of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations (FAO), and the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA). The publication includes a special chapter on the situation and expectations of family farming in Latin America and the Caribbean, as well as analysis of the macroeconomic context, crop, livestock, forestry and fishery sectors; rural wellbeing; and agricultural institutions. According to ECLAC Executive Secretary Alicia Bárcena, despite the region’s

agricultural slowdown in 2013, 2014 is expected to see economic conditions conducive to economic growth and regional agricultural growth. She said these trends should be underpinned by policies aimed not only at increasing yields in commercial farming, but also boosting the successful inclusion of family farming in value chains. IICA Director General Víctor M Villalobos said family farming is the economic activity with the greatest potential for increasing food supply in the region, reducing unemployment and saving the most vulnerable rural population from poverty and malnutrition. FAO regional representative for Latin America and the Caribbean, Raúl Benítez, agreed and said this requires promoting innovation and technology generation, as well as the inclusion of family farming in value chains and retaining young people in the countryside. Stable growth From 2014, the region’s agricultural production and exports are expected to be boosted by the recovery in world demand. This in turn will be the result of growth in developing countries and the expansion of their middle classes–provided there are no adverse effects due to extreme weather conditions or a weaker dollar.

The three agencies estimate that the next decade will see agricultural prices fall in real terms. Measures must therefore be implemented to increase investment, productivity and efficiency, so that the agricultural sector is in a better position to handle climatic and economic risks (as these take a longer toll on prices). ECLAC, FAO and IICA recommend three types of policy to guarantee growth expectations for regional agriculture: adaptation of production to world demand and climate; food health and safety; and market functioning and trade. In the first case, agencies suggest that Latin American and Caribbean countries attempt to make use of the opportunities offered by growing world food demand, as well as supporting policies to mitigate the impact of climate change and variability on rural populations and production. As part of the second group of policies, the suggestion is to strengthen the training of human resources and modernise national systems for food health and safety. In the third case, the agencies emphasised the need to promote coverage of and access to agricultural insurance as a risk-management tool.



week ending October 3, 2013 |

IMF Board clears way for Jamaica’s second drawdown of US$19.97 million


amaica has passed the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) first quarterly review, thereby qualifying for a second drawdown of US$19.97 million under the four-year Extended Fund Facility (EFF). The IMF’s Executive Board approved the review on September 30, thus paving the way for the receipt of support from other multilateral development partners, including the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB) and World Bank, towards the end of this year. Jamaica’s Finance and Planning Minister Dr Peter Phillips made the disclosure Tuesday in a statement to the House of Representatives. He said the IMF staff in their report to the board on Jamaica’s economic performance, acknowledged the government of Jamaica’s “financial discipline” and “steadfast implementation of the initial reforms.” “Despite major challenges, the government of Jamaica comfortably met all the quantitative conditions for the first review and the structural benchmarks as well as

Jamaica’s Finance Minister Dr Peter Phillips (Jamaica Gleaner file photo)

the associated indicative commitments (which) were implemented in a timely manner,” the minister said. The overall performance followed the country’s successful completion of its own programme targets in March, and follows the implementation of stringent prior actions earlier in the year. The minister informed that the major challenges in the first quarter of the programme, April to June, stemmed from a weaker than anticipated global and domestic economic environment. Notwithstanding, the IMF staff in its appraisal concluded that “overall policy implementation

under the programme has been strong and structural reforms are progressing.” Of note, the primary balance and tax revenue targets were attained. At the same time, the Jamaican government was able to meet its programmed commitments with respect to social protection expenditure. Jamaica’s creditable economic performance was also underscored by the recent upgrade by Standard and Poor’s, which noted that the Jamaican economy has stabilised and expressed their expectation that the country’s ambitious fiscal targets for this year will be met. “The government of Jamaica remains fully committed to the specific targets set out in the April 2013 Memorandum of Economic and Financial Policies (MEFP). We look forward to receiving the IMF team in November for the second review. After the IMF Executive Board gives the necessary approval to the review, the administration intends to lay a similar Ministry Paper in this honourable House,” the minister assured. (Excerpted from JIS)

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week ending October 3, 2013 |

IDB promises Guyana, Guyana’s airport financial help in energy sector expansion attracts int’l interest T

he Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has promised to assist Guyana with technical and financial support in an effort to reform the energy sector. During a meeting in New York last Friday, IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno told President Donald Ramotar that the lending agency will help Guyana modernise its energy matrix and advance its innovative Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) in an effort to maintain debt sustainability, while providing the desired benefits to Guyana’s economy and its people. Having acknowledged the pressing need to diversify Guyana’s energy matrix in a way that protects its environment, improves energy sustainability, and lowers total energy costs, the two officials agreed to have technical teams from Guyana and the IDB jointly explore alternative ways to upgrade and diversify the country’s energy matrix. “They discussed

IDB President Luis Alberto Moreno

the various development challenges facing Guyana as well as the IDB’s long-term commitment to support Guyana’s national development strategy,” a release from the IDB said. The release said too that Moreno congratulated Ramotar on the effective management of fiscal policy by the government of Guyana’s economic team following massive debt forgiveness in 2006. “As a result, Guyana has consistently maintained fiscal stability and sustained economic growth throughout the international economic

downturn,” the release indicated. “During the meeting with Ramotar, Moreno emphasised that the IDB is fully committed to playing a leading role in helping Guyana to modernise its energy matrix and to advance its innovative Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) in a manner that maintains debt sustainability while providing the desired benefits to Guyana’s economy and its people,” the release stated. It said that both leaders agreed on the pressing need to diversify Guyana’s energy matrix in a way that protects its environment, improves energy sustainability, and lowers total energy costs. “Moreno emphasised that the IDB is especially enthusiastic about providing Guyana with technical and financial support to reform energy sector governance. "This is of immediate importance to lower the risks and maximise the benefits of any initiative in the energy sector,” the release added.

Guyana gets US$32 million generator sets - as part of GPL’s expansion


The Guyana Power and Light's 8.6-megawatt generators at the John Fernandes Wharf last Friday

rime Minister Samuel Hinds, along with Guyana Power and Light (GPL) Chief Executive Officer Bharat Dindyal, last Friday visited the John Fernandes Wharf to inspect a US$32 million, five-component Wartsila generator set, which is expected to be installed at the 26-megawatt Vreeden-Hoop power station by next month-end, and become fully operational by April 2014. The engines have a capacity of 8.6 megawatts each and will be contributing to the Demerara system, and eventually,

Berbice and part of the East Bank Essequibo system, and will be moving from an 80-megawatt capacity to about 106 megawatts. Guyana has always had very good experiences with the Wartsila units and thus far, there are about 14 16 generating units and as the systems are growing, GPL will be increasing the size of the sets, Hinds told the media. With these new sets, power generation will be up from 5.5 to 8.7 megawatts, using heavy fuel oil; hence, the Amalia Falls Hydro Power

Project is seen as critical to the future of the energy sector, the prime minister stated. He said that government is still hoping that the Amalia project would become a reality. Meanwhile, Dindyal said that in terms of site preparation, the engine’s foundation, the hall and the foundation for the control building and the room for the power station have been completed. Dindyal said that a road was also constructed next to the site with a strong groundwork for the trailers to support the engines. (Guyana Times)

Guyana’s Public Works Minister Robeson Benn with Nigeria’s Aviation Minister, Princess Stella Adaeze-Oduah at the 38th ICAO General Assembly in Montreal, Canada


everal countries have shown interest in Guyana’s push to develop a new international airport, Public Works Minister Robeson Benn disclosed. The minister recently led a small delegation to the 38th International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) General Assembly in Montreal, Canada. Representatives from Nigeria, Indonesia and other African countries quizzed Benn on the opportunities that could be derived from the project. In-depth discussions were also held with Princess Stella AdaezeOduah, Nigeria’s aviation minister. According to Benn, he along with Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCCA) Director Zulfikar Mohamed and Guyana’s Ambassador to Canada Harrinarine Nawbatt networked with countries currently spending millions of dollars to either upgrade or build

new airports. “….countries like Indonesia, Nigeria, Malaysia, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, just to name a few,” he divulged. The summit, which began on September 24, saw the convergence of over 1400 delegates brainstorming and discussing a range of critical global issues, including how countries and operators will cooperatively manage the projected doubling of air transport traffic expected by 2030. “Importantly, the delegates endorsed the revision of global safety and air navigation, affordability and sustainability,” Benn added. Meanwhile, the unilateral taxes on airfares that were enforced by the U.S. and the United Kingdom created some unease among delegates, with St Vincent leading the charge. The taxes imposed, aviation pundits opined, can be attributed to the significant airfare into the region and are a

deterrent to the tourism industry. On the environmental front, international aviation is coming under more scrutiny from ICAO and sister agencies on its impact on the environment. “ICAO has stressed repeatedly that aviation contributes just two per cent of global man-made greenhouse gas emissions each year and that approximately two thirds of this amount, or 1.3 per cent, are due to international flights,” the public works minister explained. The ICAO is a specialised agency of the United Nations. It codifies the principles and techniques of international air navigation and fosters the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth. Its headquarters are located in the Quartier International of Montreal, Quebec, Canada. (Guyana Times)


News | week ending October 3, 2013

Guyanese miners very receptive to mercury free technology


uyana’s Natural Resources and Environment Minister Robert Persaud on Saturday visited the operations of Correia Mining Company (CMC) in Olive Creek, Region Seven, where he was given a first-hand look of gold-washing using an Xtruder 255 Shaking Table, a very viable alternative to mercury usage. This shaking table, which costs US$32,000, is considered a gold finishing table and is the final step before smelting. It is allows for 98 per cent recovery, is simple to operate, has the capacity of up to 255 pounds per hour and can recover very fine gold, down to 400 mesh with a minimal water requirement of six to 10 gallons per minute.


Mercury, a highly toxic chemical element, is banned in many countries, but is still used in Guyana and most of the developing world. However, the government aims to gradu-

Gold washed through the "Shaking Table" process about to be smelted

ally phase out its use by 2020, as it recognises the environmental and human health risks of mercury. The natural resources ministry, working closely with the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC), has been look-

ing at ways in which miners can be further ‘incentivised’ for incorporating mercury-free technologies into their practices. CMC Mining Operations Director Charles De Freitas explained that the “washing down” process takes

about two to two-and-ahalf hours maximum after which it goes straight to the furnace for smelting. “Mercury is over Gy$20,000 per pound so we feel that in the long run this will not only pay for itself, but is also elim-

inating all the risks that come with mercury. This is a viable alternative,” De Freitas said. Persaud disclosed that discussions are ongoing with key stakeholders of the industry on additional incentives other than tax waivers on the importation of such technology. The GGMC has invested in the procurement of two centrifugal gold recovery systems from South Africa, which is another form of mercuryfree technology. The minister explained that globally, it is recognised that there will be restrictions in the trade of mercury, and as a result, access to the element will become very difficult and even more costly. As such, the ministry stands ready to work closely with the players of the sector to gradually phase out the use of mercury, and the initiative that CMC has taken lends significant impetus in this regard. Persaud said to date, he has not met a miner

who is not interested in transitioning to mercuryfree mining practices. He noted that “there is curiosity, there is interest and there is willingness”.


CMC Chief Executive Officer Michael Correia Jr said it was incumbent on all involved in the sector to ensure that mining is done in a sustainable manner. He stated that it was an established fact that mercury is a poison and therefore, the elimination of its use was in the best interest of all involved. This particular shaking table has the capability of recovering approximately 15 per cent more fine gold at a faster rate, and when powered with solar energy, eliminates a lot of miscellaneous costs compared to operations using mercury. The CMC is the first company in the local mining industry that has a shaking table that is at an operational stage. The others are now conducting trial runs. (Excerpted from Guyana Times)

Canadians agree to new 424 candidates to contractor for TT’s Penal hospital contest TT’s local


he Canadian Commercial Corporation (CCC) has officially communicated to the Urban Development Corporation of Trinidad and Tobago (UDeCOTT) that it will consider another company to construct the Penal hospital, according to TT’s Housing Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal. Dr Moonilal, who is also currently acting as prime minister, made the disclosure to the media Tuesday at Piarco International Airport, where he saw the departure of Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar for Panama. Amidst controversy surrounding Canadian contractor SNC-Lavalin, the TT government agreed to cut ties with the company. Moonilal said the first phase of the Penal hospital, the design, was almost complete and construction was the next phase. Asked if the projected delivery date for the hospital would be delayed, he said: “In a way, yes, it will hamper (delivery) by a few months, but we will pursue it with another contractor because we have expressed on

TT’s Housing Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal (TT Newsday file photo)

public record our deep concerns with the contractor.” Responding to the statements of the Canadian High Commissioner, who told TT media he was deeply offended by the comments of Opposition MP Colm Imbert in Parliament last Friday, Moonilal said Imbert had a right to raise the matter. “Mr Imbert did some observations, which he is entitled to, as a member of Parliament un-

der the privilege of Parliament. I think the High Commissioner to Trinidad and Tobago may want to clarify the record perfectly with Mr Imbert on that matter.” Asked whether he agreed with TT’s Communications Minister Gerald Hadeed that the situation created a diplomatic mess, Moonilal replied: “One doesn’t like squabbles between legislatures and heads of missions in any country...There are issues there. I would imag-

ine it would be cleared up in a few days and Mr Imbert has a strong opinion on the matter... The High Commissioner has responded to clarify. I hope he can clarify the issues properly.” In June, it was reported that SNC-Lavalin was awarded a TT$2.2 billion contract to design the Penal hospital. Imbert raised a red flag about the contract, telling Parliament that the World Bank had banned SNC and its affiliates over alleged corrupt practices. Earlier this month, he filed a parliamentary motion calling on the TT government to terminate all existing contracts with SNC-Lavalin. Last Monday, Moonilal, Udecott chairman Jerlean John, Latulippe, CCC vicepresident, Mariette FyteFortin and SNC-Lavalin officials met to discuss the hospital project. Despite a management appraisal report by the CCC on SNC-Lavalin, which “reaffirmed their commitment towards transparency and good ethical practices” the local contingent asked them to change the contractor. (Excerpted from TT Newsday)

gov’t elections


ome 424 candidates Monday filed nomination papers to contest the local government elections in Trinidad on October 21. The People’s National Movement (PNM) and Independent Liberal Party (ILP) nominated 136 each, while the People’s Partnership coalition of the United National Congress (UNC), the Congress of the People (COP) and the National Joint Action Committee (NJAC) nominated 136 candidates. The Movement for Social Justice (MSJ) nominated 16 candidates. MSJ leader David Abdulah said his party nominated 16 candidates for electoral districts in Point Fortin, Arima, Tunapuna/ Piarco, Chaguanas, Diego Martin and Siparia. A spokesman at the Elections and Boundaries Commission said Monday Nomination Day proceeded without any major incident. However, representatives of the PNM and the MSJ said there had been some difficulties for their

candidates. Candidates contesting for the San Fernando City Corporation arrived with moko jumbies, tassa and music trucks. At the Siparia Regional Corporation, scenes were the same as a sea of red coloured the main street as the PNM candidates filed nomination papers in the UNC stronghold. Over in Marabella, the colour was white, as Gloria Calliste, the only one of seven PP candidates from the last council to be given the nod this time around, marched to the beat of tassa from the Marabella Roundabout to the Mannie Ramjohn Stadium returning office. Calliste, who is once again contesting the Marabella West seat on a COP ticket, was accompanied by her colleagues Kern Ramdeen, Marabella East candidate, and Erickson Ramkhelawan for Marabella South/ Vistabella. On Sunday, the PNM and the ILP each presented their 136 candidates to contest the elections. (TT Guardian)



week ending October 3, 2013|

at New York meeting

President Ramotar updates diapora on Guyana’s progress


resident Donald and First Lady Deolatchmee Ramotar were given a standing ovation and warm welcome in Richmond Hill, New York by overseas-based Guyanese last Friday at the Fairfield Pavilion. While in New York, the president also addressed a large gathering of Guyanese in Brooklyn last Thursday evening at the Woodbine Catering Hall. Accompanying the president were Finance Minister Dr Ashni Singh and Foreign Affairs Minister Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett. The president outlined a number of projects the government has undertaken since the November 2011 general elections and the obstacles being faced by the administration because it lacks a majority to pass bills. He said the party was ready and not afraid to face the voters, either in local government or general elections.

Guyana’s President Donald Ramotar, flanked by Foreign Affairs Minister Carolyn Rodrigues-Birkett and Finance Minister Dr Ashni Singh, among others, while addressing Guyanese in the New York diaspora recently

He said he cannot allow the combined opposition to continue to frustrate the government’s initiatives and development programmes. Ramotar noted that the government was promoting Guyana as a tourist hub and tourist arrivals were increasing.

Inadequate air link

Many of those present lamented the lack of direct, non-stop flights from New York, which they claim deter them from regularly visiting Guyana. In response, the president noted that Fly

Jamaica has started a service and Travel Span will commence operations soon, adding that Jet Blue and other carriers will hopefully start next year. He also said government was re-engaging Delta to get the airline, which pulled out in May, to return to Guyana. To further boost the aviation sector, Guyana needs a modern airport with a longer runaway that will allow bigger jets to land, Ramotar stated. He believes that with a modern airport,

Guyana can be a hub for flights to South America and elsewhere. He blamed the opposition for the failure of the airport expansion project, as well as the Amaila Fall Hydro Project and the Specialty Hospital, adding that it was also against the Marriott Hotel project, which is needed in Guyana. The president said he was determined to develop hydroelectric power in Guyana, as it will provide cheaper electricity to Guyanese. Asked about the fail-

ure of the Skeldon sugar factory, the president said it was the engineers from Booker Tate who were to be blamed. “The Chinese builders objected to several aspects of the design and construction, but Booker Tate insisted it should be built to their specification,” he explained.

Corruption and crime

Queried about corruption and crime, Ramotar said he does not dispute that corruption exists, as it does everywhere, but said it is difficult to prove it, and no

one has come forward as yet with solid evidence. He said there are many problems with the court system and police investigation of crime and corruption. The president noted too that there was a tendering process for public works. “All projects are publicly advertised and opened for public bidding. The bids are publicly opened in front of the media,” said the president.

Interior development

Asked about granting autonomy to the Tain Campus of the University of Guyana (UG), Ramotar said the government is looking into the problem. Asked about development in the interior, Ramotar said the government has undertaken a number of projects to assist residents there. He said government has established wells and built hospitals and schools, in addition to refurbishing many schools and health clinics. (Excerpted from Guyana Times)

Barbados to intensify fight against human trafficking

Energy the most critical issue facing Jamaica, says Paulwell

any event, there are other pieces of legislation under which one can be charged, if there is domestic trafficking, for example, the Offences against the Person Act,” he further explained. “I believe Barbados’ retention on the Tier 2 Watch List has much to do with a one size fits all approach by the US authorities and a misunderstanding of our legislative process and domestic laws,” Brathwaite asserted. Expressing full confidence in the island’s law enforcement agencies to vigorously investigate all cases of human trafficking and to bring the perpetrators to justice, the AG suggested that the establishment of a Sex Crime and Trafficking Unit by the Royal Barbados Police Force in March of this year, will aid in eradicating this type of criminal activity from the country. It is also anticipated that the launch of a public awareness campaign will bring increased awareness of the problem, which will result in more persons reporting suspected cases of human trafficking to authorities. (Barbados Advocate)

to "look at what we are doing by energy efficiency, energy conservation, and incorporating renewables into our mix." Paulwell, who was addressing the Jamaica Alternative Energy Expo and Conference at the Montego Bay Convention Centre recently, argued that the 360-megawatt project, expected to come on stream in 2016, "will enable us to take out of the system, some old equipment and provide us with cheaper energy." He urged the Office of Utilities Regulation (OUR) to get on with their work of helping to facilitate the provision of cheaper energy to Jamaicans. Executive Producer of the Jamaica Alternative Expo Peter Shoucair told reporters at the opening of the recent twoday conference and energy expo that the event was aimed at making the public aware about the entities that offer alternative energy, and to educate them on how to reduce their energy costs. He said some 50 exhibitors—local and overseas—were in attendance at the event, which was first staged in Kingston in April. (Jamaica Observer)


arbados will continue to intensify training for police and immigration officers, as well as co-ordinate a public awareness campaign aimed at educating members of the public on matters related to human trafficking, in its fight against such a crime. This was the information delivered by Attorney General and Minister of Home Affairs Adriel Brathwaite, as he addressed the opening ceremony of the 34th Annual Crime Stoppers International Conference, which was held at the Hilton Hotel Monday. Noting the country’s efforts to fight human trafficking to date, the AG revealed that over the past two years, the government of Barbados has responded to threats of transnational crime, with the enactment of legislation and policy guidelines to eliminate such illegal activities. He noted that an example of the work being done was evident when earlier this year, law enforcement officials arrested and charged several persons who were engaged in human trafficking.

Stressing, however, that there is some concern that Barbados continues to be placed on Tier 2 of the Watch

acknowledged that the opportunities for moving persons within the country in an organised fashion are extremely lim-

Barbados’ Attorney General and Minister of Home Affairs Adriel Brathwaite (Nation News file photo)

List in the Trafficking in Persons Report published annually by the US State Department, Brathwaite suggested that one of the reasons for this, is that the Transnational Organised Crime Act does not include trafficking at the domestic level. “Due to the small size of Barbados, it must be

ited and therefore, the movement or trafficking of persons as distinct from the exploitation of persons must be recognised,” the AG stated. “ T h e r e f o r e , the provisions of the Transnational Organised Crime (Prevention and Control) Act, 2011 are on preventing transnational human trafficking. In

Jamaica’s Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining Phillip Paulwell (Jamaica Observer photo)


amaica’s Minister of Science, Technology, Energy and Mining Phillip Paulwell says energy is the most critical issue facing the country, adding that the use of renewable energy is one way to significantly lower the cost of electricity in the island. "There is no other issue that would affect poverty, that would affect unemployment, that would affect economic growth in Jamaica than energy," said Paulwell. "And as minister I make no apologies for fervently fighting hard to ensure that we fight this problem once and for all. And we are going to fight this problem once and for all." He urged Jamaicans


News | week ending October 3, 2013

Large international Opposition accuses St contingent at Lucian gov’t of seeking to GuyExpo 2013 stifle press freedom



GuyExpo was first staged in Guyana in 1995 (GTA file photo)

ome 237 exhibitors are expected to participate this year in Guyana’s premier trade show and exhibition, GuyExpo, currently being staged at the National Exhibition Centre, Sophia, Greater Georgetown. Earlier this week, prior to the opening of the exposition on Thursday, the country’s Acting Tourism Minister Irfaan Ali said “at this year, we also have a great international participation from China, India, U.S.A., Argentina, Trinidad, St Lucia and Suriname. We also have four business delegations that will be attending the expo.” He also alluded to the special business forum slated to be held in collaboration with the

Guyana Manufacturers and Service Association (GMSA), as that organisation and the ministry have been working together with GuyExpo 2013. “We also have delegations from Brazil. Brazil has a fairly large delegation, about 17 persons coming in, Barbados, St Vincent and Suriname. This year we have a number of new exhibitors coming on board also we had some new corporate sponsors, all of whom we wish to thank,” the minister pointed out. He acknowledged the support of sponsors such as the Demerara Distillers Limited, Banks DIH Limited, ANSA McAl, the Guyana Telephone and Telegraph Company, Digicel, E-Networks, Tug

Brands, Winsor Tech, Impressions, Caribbean Expo Development Agency and Star Party Rentals. GuyExpo was first staged in Guyana in 1995 with close to 200 exhibitors. Today, it has become the country’s biggest exhibition with hundreds of businesses, large, medium and small, showing various products and services. The event serves as a meeting place for buyers and suppliers to interact and hitch new business deals. The trade show is now the longest sustained exhibition in the Caribbean and the focus over the years has remained on the development of especially small and medium sized enterprises. (Excerpted from Guyana Times)

JCF recruits said improving in behaviour


he police high command says there has been a marked improvement in the behaviour of recruits who enter the Jamaica Police Academy in Twickenham Park, St Catherine, for training. "We are seeing an improvement in the attitude and definitely the mindset of many of the young men and women who are coming in for training," Michael Smith, Commandant at the academy, said. The superintendent said the changes have come about as a result of continuous work at the community level through youth clubs and various other groups. The senior policeman was speaking at the academy last Friday where 187 policemen and women—inclusive of 44 Island Special

Constabulary Force (ISCF) members—graduated. Former Chief of Defence Staff Stewart Saunders, who is now the acting permanent secretary in the ministry of national security, in his address, called on the graduates to be fair and firm during the execution of their duties. "You must always strive to conduct yourself in a manner that constantly brings credit to the JCF (and ISCF)," said Saunders. "You must be fair, but firm in executing the law. You must endeavour at all times to be courteous and respectful to all you encounter," he added. He also challenged recruits to learn as much about the community in which they operate while striving to be shining ex-

amples for all around. Christine Bygrave, a trained nurse who switched careers to join the police force, was among the batch. She explained that when she applied several months ago to enlist in the force, she was not sure if she would have been selected. "During the time of waiting I decided that, instead of sitting at home and waiting on the call, I would complete my nursing studies and had even started to work at Bellevue hospital for several months," she said. When the call finally came, she did not hesitate. At the end of her graduation last Friday, some nurses who attended the ceremony in support of their former collegue, greeted her. (Jamaica Observer)

he main opposition United Workers Party (UWP) Monday accused the government of seeking to stifle press freedom in St. Lucia and that it was lending support to journalist and talk show host, Timothy Poleon, who is being sued by National Security Minister Phillip La Corbiniere. La Corbiniere last weekend announced that he had started legal proceedings against a Poleon and Radio Caribbean International (RCI) as a prelude to similar action being taken against other media establishments and journalists in St. Lucia. He said in the last few months he has been severely criticised over a number of matters related to his ministry. “I believe it would be very fair to say that since my entry into political life in this country, I have bent over backwards to ensure that the media have complete access to me and also that they feel comfortable in the pursuit of questions directed at me, and en-

St. Lucia’s National Security Minister Phillip La Corbiniere (Star file photo)

suring that they are able to have those,” said La Corbiniere, insisting that his lawsuit should not be viewed as an attack on the media in St. Lucia. But the UWP said that over the last few weeks, “St. Lucians have watched and listened as ministers target specific media workers in an effort to intimidate and instill fear in them by the issuance of threats”. The UWP said that it was standing “firmly” with Poleon and the St. Lucian media “against any form of legal action proposed by Mr. La

Corbiniere. “We request that Mr. La Corbiniere provide the nation with justified reasons for pursuing legal action against Mr. Poleon and Radio Caribbean International,” it said, adding that “the information referenced did not originate from any media house or journalist in St Lucia. “The UWP further calls on Mr. La Corbiniere to clarify whether the statement and allegations referred to and found on the World Wide Web (WWW) are true. “Must media workers, in the execution of their duties and responsibilities, suffer the rampant persecution and onslaught of name calling such as labelling Mr. Poleon a ‘media terrorist?’ It appears that the SLP administration has developed a pattern of intimidation each time they assume office to gain total control of the media by its statements, threats and now, manifested actions.” (Excerpt from Caribbean News)

COP, UNC to run separate campaigns in TT’s local gov’t election


he Congress of the People (COP) and the United National Congress (UNC) will be campaigning separately in the respective corporations they are contesting following Monday night’s campaign launch in San Fernando, says COP acting general secretary Clive Weatherhead. The PP coalition Monday night launched its local government campaign at Harris Promenade, San Fernando, presenting candidates and plans. Asked to comment on the People’s National Movement (PNM) leader Keith Rowley’s accusation on Sunday that the COP was “dead,” COP chairman Carolyn Seepersad-Bachan and other COP officials had said that would be dealt with at the PP launch Monday night. The COP is contesting five corporations, NJAC Pt Fortin and the UNC is contesting the other eight corporations in the October 21 polls. Weatherhead said par-

COP chairman Carolyn Seepersad-Bachan (TT Newsday file photo)

ties would be campaigning in the areas they were contesting, rather than as a whole, after Monday night’s launch, and the COP would hold other meetings, including one in Tunapuna on Friday. The UNC’s Rienzi Complex secretariat said outgoing UNC councillors and candidates would be organising meetings and cam-

paigning in the UNC’s eight selected corporations. The Movement for Social Justice would not be having a big campaign launch but, would be concentrating on ground campaign work, MSJ leader David Abdulah said on Sunday. HMSJ is contesting seats in seven corporations in South, the northwest and the East-West Corridor. Abdulah said the MSJ did not have big financiers to fund a large campaign launch and nightly meetings, so it was focusing on one-onone campaigning. ILP officials said meetings would continue from Thursday in San Fernando, Arima, Couva, Chaguanas, Tunapuna, Penal, San Juan-Laventille and Diego Martin, and conclude with a rally at Chaguanas on October 19. The PNM’s secretariat said campaign meetings would continue this week with a walkabout and meeting in Rio Claro. (Excerpted from TT Guardian)



week ending October 3, 2013 |

Guyanese movie ‘Brown Sugar too Bitter For Me’ mesmerises Toronto

Promoter Vashti Doorga, Meena Nandalall, lead actor and director Mahadeo Shivraj and popular bhajan/ghazal singer Bash Nandalall at the Canadian premiere of ‘Brown Sugar too Bitter For Me’ Sunday evening.


n Sunday evening, the people of Toronto were treated to an amazing cinematic experience as the Guyanese movie ‘Brown Sugar too Bitter For Me’ held its premiere performance in Canada at The AMC Theater on Interchange way. D o o r g a Entertainment, headed by Vashtie Doorga, presented the movie to viewers, who were spellbound by the presentation. The theater was decorated with sugar cane stalks set to the theme of a sugar plantation on which

the movie was based. In attendance were lead actor and producer/director Mahadeo Shivraj, Executive producer George Subhraj, lead actress Radhika Olarte, and writer and creator of the ‘Brown Sugar too Bitter For Me’, Somnauth Narine. The movie theater was packed to capacity and the audience were held entranced, as the principal actors Shivraj and Olarte, transported them in time and place to a sugar plantation in Guyana. The stellar perfor-

mance of Shivraj as ‘Ram’, the maudlin cane cutter and his optimistic wife ‘Leela’, played

Lead actress Radhika Olarte, producer George Subhraj and writer/creator Somnauth Narine. (Photos contributed)

by Olarte, held the audience mesmerized, as they took them on an unbelievable emotional journey.

Latch Shivraj, Mahadeo Shivraj and Radhika Olarte

Trinidadian scholar killed in Kenya cremated in his homeland


rinidadian scholar, Ravindra “Ravi” Ramrattan, who was killed in the Kenyan mall attack almost two weeks ago, was cremated in his native country Tuesday. Several of his foreign friends were among hundreds of mourners, who paid their final respects to Ramrattan during a funeral service, held according to Hindu rites, at the family home at Railway Road, off

Munroe Road, Cunupia. Among those who journeyed to Trinidad for the funeral were Fiorenzo Conte and Aleem Ahmed, who were also among a group of friends who immediately went in search of Ramrattan on September 21, when terrorists stormed an upscale shopping mall at Westgate in Nairobi, Kenya, holding scores of shoppers hostage. “I met him three years ago and the friend

The audience laughed, cried, and reflected, as they watched this remarkable film of sacrifice, devotion, and

who introduced me to him said that Ravi was from Trinidad and knew about cane. He was very creative and hard working...Ravi was an Indian by day and Caribbean (man) by night,” Conte told mourners. He added that Ramrattan had a brilliant mind and was very humble. Ramrattan was a former student of Presentation College, Chaguanas, and also attended the London

School of Economics and Political Science and the Universities of Oxford and Cambridge. TT government officials including acting Prime Minister Dr Roodal Moonilal, House Speaker Wade Mark, National Security Minister Gary Griffith, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Dookeran and Chaguanas West MP Jack Warner were among the mourners. (Excerpted from TT Newsday)

suffering. The movie was such a revealing and awesome experience that a member of the audience, perhaps filled with nostalgic memories of life on a sugar plantation, retorted that “the movie touched my soul”. ‘Brown Sugar too Bitter For Me’ presents storytelling at its finest and was complimented by the music of Terry Gajraj, Anant Hansraj, Nadeer Bacchus, and Princess Anisa. For the West Indian diaspora, this movie bridges the past with the future and will never be forgotten.

12 |week ending October 3, 2013



week ending October 3, 2013 |

Prominent Berbice doctor killed in road accident in Guyana


prominent New Amsterdam doctor died in a road accident Sunday evening, shortly after witnessing a game of cricket, his favourite pastime. Dr Physal Sattar, 69, of LFS Burnham Street, died at the New Amsterdam Hospital shortly after colliding with a truck on the Number 11 Farm Village Public Road. He was on his way home after attending the cricket match between Berbice and Demerara earlier at the Albion Sports Complex. Reports are that Sattar attempted to overtake a truck in his

car, but instead drove straight under the larger vehicle. The truck driver, Modhakai Ramsundar, 35, was admitted to the same medical institution after sustaining injuries to the chest. His father, Edwin, said he called him shortly after 19:30h saying that he was involved in an accident. “He told me that he was driving when he heard a noise at the back and the impact caused him to hit the steering wheel. He say that he clutch in and allow the truck to roll and stop,” said the truck driver’s father.

Witnesses say that they heard the impact and ran to assist the drivers. Sattar’s car was in the centre of the road, while the truck was a few metres off the road shoulder. “We had to push the truck to get it in the corner,” one resident, Kushnarine Deonarine said. He explained that Dr Sattar was removed from his mangled vehicle after several attempts to get the driver’s door open. “When we get him out, we put him to lie down on the road. He did talking. When I hold up he head, plenty blood run-

doctor to the hospital. “Nobody ent wan carry him. They say the blood would nasty the car. But nobody ent know that is a doctor,” he added. Dr Sattar was placed in the tray of a pickup and taken to the hospital where doctors tried desperately to save their colleague’s life.

Deep loss

Dr Physal Sattar

ning, the skull open and the brains showing,” he said. Deonarine said it took them more than 30 minutes to find transportation to take the injured

An autopsy performed on the body by government pathologist Dr Vivekanand Bridgemohan revealed that Dr Sattar died as a result of loss of blood (haemorrhage) due to grave injuries–several ribs were broken and

there was extensive damage to the brain. Dr Sattar had been practising medicine in New Amsterdam for the past 42 years. He leaves to mourn his wife of 40 years and four children. Region Six Chairman David Armogan said the loss will be felt by the entire Berbice community. “Every time you call on him to do community work and medical outreaches, he would readily make himself available. So it is a great loss to the community and I think that the medical community would have also lost a great colleague,” he said. (Guyana Times)

crack-down Jamaica’s ‘lotto bill’ proving effective -onhelping cyber crimes


ome 50 persons have already been charged under Jamaica’s Law Reform (Fraudulent Transactions) (Special Provisions) Act, which was passed in Parliament less than six months ago. This was disclosed by National Security Minister Peter Bunting, who described the Act, commonly referred to as the ‘lotto bill’, as a “very effective piece of legislation”, which has made law enforcers much more equipped at tackling the lottery scam and other forms of cybercrimes in Jamaica. “I’m also very hopeful that we will see some convictions under this (legislation) within the next few months,” Bunting said, while addressing the National Conference on Cyber Security and Digital Forensics at the University of the West Indies (UWI) Regional Headquarters, in St. Andrew on Monday.

Jamaica’s National Security Minister Peter Bunting (Jamaica Gleaner file photo)

Cybercrime cases have become a major challenge to Jamaican law enforcers, as the internet and e-commerce activities become even more commonplace.

Growing cases

According to the latest data from the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), proceeds from cybercrimes have amounted to more than Ja$2 billion in Jamaica over the last four years.

Statistics also reveal that over 1,000 websites have been hacked, including some of those managed by the State, between 2011 and 2012. The Cybercrime Unit in the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions has disclosed that there have been 88 cases of third party debit and credit card fraud since the start of the year. In light of this, Bunting said cybercrimes continue to present a range of challenges for local law enforcers, particularly as it pertains to prosecution. He noted that in the internet age, geographical borders have disappeared and attacks may be from anywhere in the world.


“It is difficult to prosecute, because almost by definition it is transnational,” he said, noting that often times when an account is hacked in Jamaica, it is done from

a site or an email address hosted by a foreign service, such as Gmail or Facebook. He said in many of these cases, it is very unlikely that those accounts are based on a server in Jamaica to which local law enforcers have access. Bunting emphasized that is critical that all stakeholders remain

steadfast and continue to work at improving the country’s capacity to tackle the problem of cybercrime from a law enforcement perspective. Meanwhile, Group Managing Director, National Commercial Bank (NCB), Patrick Hylton, said the problem of cybercrime, which is a major driver behind

financial fraud, has become far too big to be ignored. He noted that both the private and public sectors must position themselves to be extremely vigilant as it relates to protection against threats and vulnerabilities from known and unknown attacks. (Excerpted from JIS)


News |week ending October 3, 2013

Credit bureau will play key role in Guyana’s growth–Canadian envoy


ew Canadian H i g h Commissioner to Guyana Dr Nicole Giles has underscored the importance of access to credit in Guyana and in the Caribbean, for Canada’s continued investment and development in the region. Dr Giles made this comment last Friday at the launch of Credit Info Guyana Inc at the Georgetown

Club. The Bank of Guyana on August 30 officially presented the Icelandic company with its licence to operate in Guyana, enabling Guyanese to get easier access to financing. The granting of the licence followed a lengthy selection process that reviewed four other requests from international operators. The aim

of the credit bureau is to enable more reliable, competitive and responsible lending, while protecting borrowers’ rights. The newly-appointed Canadian high commissioner said access to credit was a key component to establishing a more receptive framework for entrepreneurship and private sector investments, which are essential elements for

sustainable economic growth. “Our development initiatives for the region, and by extension Guyana, have been strategically clustered around this overall goal of enhancing sustainable economic growth. "We believe that a more integrated Caribbean region will be better positioned to compete in the global economy, contributing to the welfare, prosperity and security of its people,” she stated.


A section of the gathering at the launch of the Credit Info Guyana Inc at the Georgetown Club last Friday

Dr Giles disclosed that Canada is working along with the various governments in the Caribbean to enhance their countries’ operations in areas that will see the economies flourishing. These areas include public finance management; strong leadership in the public service; a strong and more entrepreneurial private sec-

Canada’s High Commissioner to Guyana Dr Nicole Giles

tor; a highly trained workforce, with skills that are needed by the Caribbean Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs); strong rule of law, enforced by an efficient and effective judiciary; and disaster risk management. In addition, she stated that the establishment of the credit bureau has proved to be a significant milestone for the development of Guyana’s financial sec-

tor, which will see businesses benefiting immensely. “The foundation of the credit bureau heralds a new chapter in the credit appraisal process– one that is responsive to the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) sector. SMEs consistently cite access to credit as one of the greatest operational barriers to flourishing business,” the high commissioner said. SMEs are major contributors to the global economy, providing employment for more than 60 per cent of the workforce; however, this sector is still considered high risk and is largely under-served by the financial community. Dr Giles stated that Canada is pursuing an ambitious free trade model in the CanadaCaribbean Community (Caricom) trade agreement negotiations, which will see both sides benefiting. (Guyana Times)

Caribbean women, children to benefit from US$700 million World Bank health funding


orld Bank G r o u p President Jim Yong Kim has announced that the lending agency plans to invest at least US$700 million through the end of 2015 to help developing countries, including the Caribbean reach the United Nations' Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for women and children's health. Kim said this new funding from the International Development Association (IDA), the World Bank Group's fund for the poorest countries, will enable "national scaleups" of successful pilot reproductive, maternal, and child health projects that were made possible by support from the Bank Group's Health Results Innovation Trust Fund (HRITF) and IDA. The announcement follows Kim's September 2012 commitment to help scale up funding for MDGs four and five as part of the UN Secretary General's Every Woman Every Child global partnership. "We need to inject greater urgency into our collective efforts to save more women and children's lives, and evidence shows that results-based financing has significant impact," said Kim in a

According to the World Bank, the new funding will enable “national scale-ups” of successful pilot reproductive, maternal, and child health projects that were made possible through support from the bank.

statement. "The World Bank Group is committed to using evidence-based approaches to help ensure that every woman and every child can get the affordable, quality health care necessary to survive and live a healthy, productive life," he added. The US$700 million announcement comes on top of a September 2010 World Bank pledge to provide US$600 million in IDA results-based financing for MDGs four and five by 2015.The World Bank said it has delivered on that pledge two years ahead of

schedule. "This support has contributed to global declines in maternal and child mortality and expanded access to health care for poor women and children," the statement said. Through resultsbased financing, the World Bank said it is working with countries to shift the focus from paying for inputs to paying for results. It said payment to health service providers is explicitly tied to the successful delivery and independent verification of pre-agreed results. (Excerpted from CMC)



week ending October 3, 2013 |

Guyana welcomes Fly Jamaica F

ly Jamaica officially began its service in Guyana during the early hours of last Friday morning, with the inaugural flight comprising members of the media corps and some 120 private passengers to Jamaica then onward to United States of America. The Boeing 757200ER aircraft, with a seating configuration of 12 business and 186 economy seats, departed the Cheddi Jagan International Airport at 01:30h and arrived at the Norman Manley International Airport, Jamaica around 05:00h, with a connecting flight to New York’s John F Kennedy Airport. The new airline will create more linkages between Guyana and

Jamaica and cheaper airfares to the New York. Last Friday morning, the inaugural flight arrived to loud cheers at the CJIA, with the airline’s executives, proudly stating that it will soon become Guyana’s number one carrier. The inaugural flight arrived on schedule, and the airline emphasised that its ontime service will separate it from its competition.

Tourism market

Guyana’s acting Tourism Minister Irfaan Ali, who was present at the ceremony, welcomed the new airline by reiterating that Guyana is a versatile tourism market. Ali noted that Guyana has seen 15 per cent of its visitors coming from Jamaica over the past year, and now that

Passengers getting ready to board the flight in Guyana

Fly Jamaica has entered the market, that percentage will increase tremendously. Also speaking at the launching ceremony, Fly Jamaica’s Chief Executive Officer, Guyanese pilot Captain Ronald Reece told the gathering that the airline will create the much-needed air bridge between Guyana and

Jamaica. He said both Guyana and Jamaica have much to offer, and will now be able to work hand in hand via the direct linkage provided by Fly Jamaica. Captain Reece added that the carrier will work with local officials to ensure increased tourism, especially in the Guyana market, with the full

support of the people of Guyana.

Inaugural flight

To mark the inaugural flight, a number of Jamaican artistes, including Wayne Marshall who serves as an ambassador for the airline, arrived on the first flight to Guyana. The artistes marked the occasion by offering their best wishes to

the airline through song. Also adding to the unfolding of the grand occasion, members of the media corps were afforded a complimentary return ticket from Guyana to New York. The occasion was also graced by prominent media personnel from Jamaica as well as other top airline officials. Fly Jamaica will be operating flights from Georgetown to Jamaica, New York and Toronto. The carrier intends to launch an aggressive marketing strategy focused heavily on the Guyana market. Presently, Fly Jamaica Airways offers four weekly non-stop flights between Kingston and New York and vice versa. (Excerpted from Guyana Times)

Shaw advocates term limits at Egyptian billionaire eyes massive investments in Grenada campaign launch in Jamaica



udley Shaw strongly reiterated calls for a twoterm limit for Jamaican prime ministers, as he officially launched his campaign for leadership of the Opposition Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) Sunday. “We must introduce term limits for prime ministers of Jamaica; just like abroad dem have two terms and you done, it should be two terms in Jamaica as prime minister,” Shaw told hundreds of delegates who braved heavy rain to attend the launch at Manchester High School. Shaw, who is to challenge incumbent JLP leader Andrew Holness at the party’s national conference in November, said after two five-year terms prime ministers “should step aside and move on...” Shaw, who announced his acceptance of an invitation from a “media house” for a “national debate with (Holness) before the leadership elections, at anytime, any venue and on any topic”, said term limits should also apply to political leaders. Term limits was a source of vigorous debate in the 1990s and early 2000s—passionately advocated by former prime minister Bruce Golding when he broke away from the JLP to lead the National Democratic Movement. Golding would return to the JLP to lead that party to electoral victory in 2007, but the issue of term limits has had less resonance since. Golding retired as

Deputy Leader of the JLP Audley Shaw is joined at the podium by his supporters, including Daryl Vaz (left) and Ed Bartlett (third left). Also with him are his wife Susan Shaw (third right) and his two elder daughters Dr Sacha Shaw-Cuthbert (second left) and Allison Shaw. (Gregory Bennett/Jamaica Observer photo)

prime minister and party leader in late 2011, handing over to Holness just over two months before the December 2011 elections, which the JLP lost to the People’s National Party (PNP). Shaw also pledged to deepen and strengthen internal democracy in the JLP. In obvious reference to the bypassing of party delegates by the party leadership when Holness was chosen as leader, Shaw said the delegates should always have the final say. “We must make it mandatory that the leader of the party must be appointed by the delegates and not be appointed by a few leaders in a private room,” he said. Pointing to his 31 years of service in public life and his 26 years in politics—including as senator, general secretary, deputy leader, shadow minister and four years as finance minister—the 61-yearold Shaw suggested he was well-equipped to lead.

He pledged to listen to the “voice of the people” and to unite the party to achieve victory over the ruling PNP. He told the delegates, “...don't fool yourself, we have to work hard to win... And to win we must have decisive, inclusive and visionary leadership. There is no room for division. As one united party, we cannot speak in divisive terms about those who were NDM, PNP, brown man or money man”. Others endorsing Shaw at the meeting included former Cabinet minister (now retired from active politics) Neville Gallimore, MP North East St Catherine Gregory Mair, MP for West Portland Daryl Vaz, Ruddy Spencer of the Bustamane Industrial Trade Union, Chris Tufton, a deputy leader and JLP senator, Joan Gordon-Webley of the JLP Women’s Freedom Movement, and Warren Newby of Generation 2000. (Excerpted from Jamaica Observer)

renada could soon see the construction of three five-star resorts along the coast of the world famous Grand Anse beach. Egyptian billionaire and businessman Naguib Sawiris is in discussion with the government to invest in the island’s tourism sector. But Grenada’s newest investor, whose prominent family in Egypt already owns nearly 50 percent of that country’s stock exchange, said he was attracted to the Spice Isle by the warmth of the Grenadian people. Sawiris, who has already bought beachfront property, was introduced to the island by a friend with strong Grenadian roots, Danny Fahkre, Grenada’s deputy ambassador to the United Kingdom. Sawiris, Grenada’s ambassador to France, met with Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell last Thursday in the VIP lounge at the Maurice Bishop International Airport. Sawiris has his eye on three plots on the popular Grand Anse Beach.

He has already purchased Silver Sands, and he is also interested in the Rivierra property located between Camerhogne Park and Grenada Grand Beach Resort while talks continue for the St George’s University’s lot in Morne rouge. It is believed that the construction of hotels and villas on the three properties can contribute as much as 30 to 40 percent of the country’s room stock. Sawaris is hoping to get the ball rolling on construction of the first lot at Silver Sands as soon as possible. He believes that if all goes well, within three to four years, Grenada can see three more five-star hotels on the island. Mitchell said those are the type of investment the country needs. Sawiris has major investments in the telecommunication industry in Egypt and other parts of the world. His company owns major shares in the world’s largest cement producing company. His business portfolio extends to many countries including the Middle East, Switzerland and USA. (GIS)


News | week ending October 3, 2013

Dr Gonsalves vows to Canadian expert trains intensify reparations TT’s FIU analysts C drive next year Vincent that Caricom should mandate reparations education in schools’ curriculum. Recognition was also given to past reparations initiatives, such as the work done by the Rastafari Movement and some major reparations conferences that have occurred in Nigeria, Washington DC, and Barbados.


St Vincent and the Grenadines’ Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves

t Vincent and the Grenadines’ Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves said he plans to intensify efforts in addressing the issue of reparations for native genocide and slavery when he assumes the chairmanship of the Caribbean Community (Caricom) early in the New Year. “When I take over the chairmanship of Caricom in January, I hope to get letters to Europe,” Gonsalves, told a standing-room-only town hall meeting in Brooklyn late Saturday. “We’re going for reparations because of statesponsored genocide and state-sponsored slavery,” he added. “Europe, by engaging us in this matter, can make us more free,” he continued. “We need reparations, but we need

available resources.”

Serious conversation

The Vincentian leader, who has been taking the lead in Caricom on the issue, said efforts at seeking reparations from Europe are “not a conversation about protests. This is a serious conversation to see what is the legacy”, he said. “I’m not a little boy holding up a placard. I’m the prime minister of an independent country.” Gonsalves warned that, as the reparations issue gains ground, European governments and their “agencies” are already “finding means to divide the reparations movement,” adding that “reparations is for all of us”. It was mentioned at the recently-held reparations conference in St


At the conference, a structure was proposed for the regional commission. It was agreed that the body would be led by a chairman and three vice chairs with responsibility for certain key tasks. Professor Hilary Beckles was elected as chairperson of the Caricom Regional Reparations Commission. Vice chairs are Jomo Thomas, St Vincent and the Grenadines (responsible for inter- governmental relations); Dr Verene Shepherd, Jamaica (research); and Ahmad Zunder, Suriname, (mobilisation). It was agreed that a website should be created as a focal point for ensuring that information on the work of the regional commission and national committees/ task forces was made readily available.

LIAT will find it difficult to replace Brunton - Trade Unions’ chairman

Chairman of the Council of LIAT Trade Unions Chester Humphrey (Nation News file photo)


hairman of the Council of LIAT Trade Unions Chester Humphrey has said the board will have a difficult time replacing CEO Ian Brunton, and warned LIAT could collapse if re-fleeting is derailed. “There are some crucial issues of survivability which I am assuming at this point is what is taking up everybody’s attention,” said Humphrey.

“If the re-fleeting is interrupted and significantly derailed, this airline wouldn’t survive,” he added. Brunton was leading a US$100 million re-fleeting process from Dash 8 to ATR aircraft for the Antigua-based airline, but last week the board announced it had accepted his resignation effective October 1. Humphrey said Brunton brought a

unique set of qualifications and experience in Caribbean aviation that is difficult to find and felt he would be able to make the difference and turn around the struggling airline. “He was dealt a challenging hand but of course that’s what the job involved; that’s what he was committed to come in and do and turn this thing around, and now that he has gone, it will put somewhat of a dent,” Humphrey added. “Anyone coming in now must first have to understand the current business plan, has to build a business relationship, has to mould a team,” said Humphrey. P r o m i n e n t Dominican hotelier Gregor Nassief, who was very critical of LIAT during its summer crisis, said it remains to be seen whether Brunton’s resignation will prove to be a positive for the company. (Antigua Observer)

a n a d i a n Anti-Money Laundering expert, Matthew McGuire conducted a training seminar for analysts at the Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) of Trinidad and Tobago last week. The seminar, which ended Saturday, was entitled Tactical and Strategic Financial Intelligence. Topics included Forensic Accounting Techniques, Trade-Based Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing, Typologies, Detection and effective Intelligence Reports. The seminar was attended by law enforcement officials including Customs, the Financial Investigation Branch of the TT Police Service, the Criminal Gang and Intelligence Unit, Organised Crime Narcotics and Firearm Bureau, prosecutors from the DPP’s office and FIU analysts. McGuire, a chartered accountant, is the National Anti-Money Laundering Practice Leader at MNP LLP. He is also a founder of the Seneca College Institute for Financial Crime Analysis. Together with his team of full-time dedicated AML specialists,

The seminar covered topics such as Forensic Accounting Techniques, Trade-Based Money Laundering and Terrorist Financing, Typologies, Detection and effective Intelligence Reports (TT Guardian photo)

McGuire leverages his private and public regulatory and investigative experience to empower MNP’s clients with antimoney laundering compliance and financial crime risk mitigation strategies. McGuire has been qualified and admitted by the Ontario Superior Court of Justice as an expert witness, certified as an Anti-Money Laundering Specialist by the Association of Certified Anti-Money Laundering Specialists, and is accredited as an Anti-Money Laundering Professional by the Bank Administration Institute. He has had significant experience in fo-

rensic accounting and has worked on cases in London, New York, Ottawa, and Toronto. He holds an Honours Bachelor of Arts as well as a Master of Accounting degree from the University of Waterloo. MNP LLP is one of the largest chartered accountancy and business consulting firms in Canada. Its business lies in the areas including Assurance & Accounting, Corporate Finance, Enterprise Risk Services, Investigative & Forensics and Corporate Recovery & Insolvency. It is a member Praxity, a global alliance of independent firms. (TT Guardian)

Jamaica mourns death of first directly elected Mayor

George Lee during his first swearing-in as mayor of Portmore June 26, 2003. (Jamaica Observer photo)


esidents of P o r t m o r e , Jamaica, were Sunday plunged into shock and disbelief when news came that George Lee, the country’s first directly elected mayor, who was now in the middle of his second term, had passed away. Lee, who was born in 1939, was 74. Two weeks ago, Jamaican media reported that Lee had undergone a surgical opera-

tion on his back and was recuperating at a private residence in Florida. Then, councillor of the Hellshire division and deputy mayor of the Portmore Municipal Council, who has been sitting in Lee’s seat since council Leon Thomas, resumed in September, denied rumours that Lee was suffering from prostate cancer and expressed hope that he would soon return home. Sunday, he said he

was taken aback by what he described as a sudden deterioration in Lee's'health. “I didn’t see this coming because his physical state was extremely good at the time,” he said referring to a three-day trip he took to visit Lee in Florida, two weekends ago. “The council is really shaken up, having received the news, and we want to offer condolences to his family,” he said. Lee created history in 2003 when he became the first directly elected Mayor in Jamaica. But in 2007, Lee lost his bid for re-election as he was defeated by the opposition Jamaica Labour Party’s (JLP), Keith Hinds. In 2012, Lee was reelected, but his tenure this time around was cut short due to illness. Portmore, now one of the largest residential communities in the English Speaking Caribbean, has a population of just under 200,000. (Excerpted from Jamaica Observer)



week ending October 3, 2013|

Scores of Guyanese workers being trained to improve level of tourism service


ome 170 Guyanese workers were recently trained as the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) intensifies efforts to improve the level of service in the country’s tourism sector. The participants of the recent three-day workshop were drawn from hotels, resorts and civil society. They were trained in the areas of front desk management, food and beverage, housekeeping, kitchen procedures and customer service. Speaking at the opening ceremony at the Tower Hotel, Main Street, Georgetown, GTA Director Indranauth Haralsingh noted that

Participants at the three-day workshop pay keen attention at the training session on Saturday

a skilled, knowledgeable, educated and welltrained workforce is essential for a rounded tourism sector. “Your employees are our most important as-

sets; I want to encourage employers to continue to invest in training for the results and objectives you have established,” the tourism official declared.

He added that the GTA believes in training, which is relevant, noting that the initiative was timely, given the rapidly expanding tourism sector. He

said a needs assessment conducted this year by the GTA revealed that training is most needed in areas of front desk management, housing keeping, customer service, food and beverage and in kitchen procedures, and these are the areas singled out for special focus. Haralsingh said the facilitators of the workshop were well qualified and the trainees can be assured that the exercise will be worthwhile. The GTA covered the cost for hiring the trainers and collected a fee of Gy$500 from each participant for snacks. Some of the participants of the workshop

were from the Hotel Tower, El Dorado Inn, Regent Guest House, Sleep-in International, Cara Lodge and Roraima Inn. The GTA will be partnering with more organisations to widen the training programme. Training of workers in the tourism sector is vital at this point since the industry is rapidly growing with more visitors going to Guyana. The country is expecting additional tourists, especially with Fly Jamaica now operating there. Despite the exit of Redjet, EZjet and Delta Airlines in less than a year, the country’s tourism sector continues to thrive. (Guyana Times)

‘Highway 2000 could still boost Jamaica’s economy' - NROCC head


amaica’s National Road Operating and Constructing Company (NROCC) says Highway 2000 has the potential to add three per cent to the country's GDP in the long term. That is, of course, dependent on how it can support tourism and manufacturing, and whether Jamaica can position itself as the world's fourth logistics hub. “The projects are part of a comprehensive plan, which includes the redevelopment of the nation's main arterial roads, and the rehabilitation of the secondary and tertiary road network,” said Ivan Anderson, Managing Director, NROCC. “The plan also includes the completion of the remaining phases of Highway 2000 that will

connect the island intricately to the major economic points in order to facilitate the effective movement of goods and services for trade.” To date, government has completed the Mandela to May Pen and the Portmore legs of the Toll Road, as well as the North Coast Highway from Negril to Port Antonio, which serves to connect the resort towns along the north coast. And, the highway to link the country's north and south coasts, including the Mount Rosser bypass, is currently being built. Speaking to members of the Jamaican Diaspora at the 10th JN Outlook for the Future fora, organised by the Jamaica National Building Society, held in New York and Toronto earlier

Highway 2000 has the potential to add three per cent to the country’s GDP in the long-term, says the National Road Operating and Constructing Company (NROCC). (Jamaica Observer photo)

this month, Anderson explained that the development of the north-south segment of Highway 2000 from Spanish Town to Ocho Rios should cost approximately US$601 million (Ja$61.3 billion). "The government of Jamaica will provide no

Trinidad’s telecoms workers want their TT$100 million or else


he Communication Workers’ Union (CWU) has given the government an ultimatum: ensure that Telecommunications Services of TT (TSTT) settle outstanding issues with workers or prepare for a great loss at the upcoming local government elections. The union is also warning the public to prepare for service disruptions if TSTT fails to resume negotiations by this week or address the issue of paying workers their correct Cost of Living Allowance (Cola). Secretary General of the CWU John Julien, over the weekend, told the media that workers were prepared to intensify protests if management failed to address issues, including salary negotiations outstanding since 2008. Julien was leading workers in a protest outside TSTT House on Edward Street, Port-of-Spain. “We are probably the only large organisation that has a collective agreement not settled since 2008,” Julien said. He appealed to the newly appointed executive vice president of hu-

man resources at TSTT, Harrygobin Jhinkoo, to work with the union. “We are placing everything at the foot of the new EVP HR (Jhinkoo). We know that he was placed here by the government and we are appealing to the government. It is better you settle with the union, because TSTT is valuable to the economy of this country.” Julien said the union would do what it could to have negotiations settled before the end of 2013. “We are going to step up our actions in order to get the negotiations resolved,” he said. Julien said last Friday’s protest was a signal to the management that the union was prepared to intensify protests. Last Thursday the union won a court matter relating to payment of Cost of Living Allowance (COLA) for junior staff members. The court ruled that the formula used to calculate COLA by the company was incorrect. Julien said the company owed workers over TT$100 million. (Excerpted from TT Guardian)

loan guarantees, revenue or traffic guarantees, neither will the government provide loans or equity in the project," he said. "The developer will finance the completion of Mount Rosser as part of the concession; and they will refund NROCC for its expenditure of US$120 million (Ja$12.2 billion) to date." He stated that the north-south segment of the highway will not only

allow for connectivity between the north tourism development and the south coast, but provide opportunities for further tourist development along the alignment. "In addition to the highway, NROCC will also provide five square kilometres of land owned by the government along the alignment to provide for further commercial, hotel and residential development to be under-

taken by the developer," said Anderson, who believes that, as a result, there are opportunities for residential development in prime areas, such as Moneague and Golden Grove in St Ann and Ewarton, Spanish Town and Caymanas in St Catherine; as well as agricultural development in places such as Worthy Park, also in St Catherine. "It's not wealth that developed our roads but roads that developed our wealth," the NROCC managing director added. "Although Jamaica is strategically located, within the Caribbean and Latin America region, it cannot become an effective global logistics hub without the road infrastructure to support the necessary movement of goods and services for trade. "We have to build the right infrastructure to achieve our objectives." (Jamaica Observer)


News | week ending October 3, 2013

Political stalemate in National Regional health body monitoring Assembly scaring away Guyana’s influenza viruses in the Caribbean investors – GCCI president

A section of the gathering at the launch of the 2013/2014 Business Directory Magazine at the Pegasus Hotel last Friday


e o r g e t o w n Chamber of C o m m e r c e and Industry (GCCI) President Clinton Urling said the ongoing political impasse in Guyana’s National Assembly is significantly affecting the national economy, as it is “scaring away investors.” This, he noted could pose a threat to the local business community. Urling raised these concerns last Friday evening, as the GCCI launched its 2013/2014 Business Directory Magazine at the Pegasus Hotel. He said the uncompromising stance that prevails between government and the combined parliamentary opposition does not bode well for international transactions and can hurt the country’s international ratings. “I recently met with an ambassador who is not based in Guyana, but has responsibility for Guyana, who said to me that his investors… they’re now reconsidering and would be worried whether to invest in Guyana because of the political uncertainty

that exists,” Urling reported. As such, he charged politicians to explore ways in which they can meet a political consensus and called on civil society to support the chamber in its call for agreement by politicians for projects of national interest. “I want to urge all the parliamentarians to review legislation that was presented in Parliament, review those legislation on merit and worthiness and also ensure that it meets the threshold with transparency and accountability,” he said. He added: “Let’s get on with the business of local government elections…establishing the Integrity Commission…establishing the Ombudsman Office…establishing the Procurement Commission…[and] passing and legislating the anti-money laundering and terrorism bills.”

Move swiftly

He urged President Donald Ramotar to move swiftly in assenting to the four local government bills, which have been passed in the

National Assembly. Meanwhile, delving into the specifics of the magazine, the GCCI president said the publication helps businesses listed to gain enhanced marketing appeal, and targets local and international markets. Referring to the cover of the magazine, Urling said it symbolises the evolving face and architecture of Georgetown. “The cover is the perfect crystallisation of the past and cultural with the contemporary and commercial. We have the historic Georgetown Cathedral juxtaposed with the new and ultra New Building Society building,” Urling explained. The cover of the 2013/2014 Business Directory Magazine was unveiled by Prime Minister Samuel Hinds and Urling in front of GCCI members and other stakeholders. In the meantime, addressing stakeholders at the event, second secretary and head of the Trade Section of the European Union Delegation to Guyana Joachaim Vedsted Jakobsen, said Guyana needs to climb the value chain, noting that current exports are dominated by commodities with low value added status. “We always hear Guyana as the land of opportunities with vast land and natural resources and the location linking the Caribbean with South America. This is true but Guyana cannot continue to be a land of potential, it has to be a land where opportunities are taken and realised,” he noted. (Excerpted from Guyana Times)

CARPHA said that improved health monitoring by the ministries of health “is providing more timely and detailed information on viruses currently circulating in the region”


he Trinidad-based Caribbean Public Health Agency (CARPHA) has sought to quell fears of an outbreak of the deadly H1N1 influenza virus in the region, noting that the Caribbean, like other regions in the Americas, experiences seasonal influenza activity. In a statement, CARPHA said that improved health monitoring by the ministries of health “is providing more timely and detailed information on viruses currently circulating in the region. “This has resulted in the recent confirmation by the Caribbean Public Health Agency of the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus from samples received from St Vincent,” the statement said, adding the identification of 2009 H1N1 influenza virus from persons seen at health care facilities in St. Vincent is “as a result of the increased investment by ministries of health, CARPHA and the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) in

laboratory services and surveillance”. Over the weekend, Barbados health authorities denied there is an “outbreak or suspicion of outbreaks” of Avian Influenza, commonly known, as Bird Flu on the island. Senior Veterinary Officer in the agriculture ministry, Dr. Mark Trotman, said that recent media reports had made reference to H1N1 and that the error had caused problems for the island. “There have been some reports in the media about (an) outbreak of influenza H1N1 in St. Vincent and an influenza-like illness in Barbados, and it has been erroneously referred to as Bird Flu, which has created a number of challenges for us in the Veterinary Services Department with respect to international trade issues and international opinion about the status of the health of the animals and the birds in Barbados,” he said. Trotman said that one

of the strongest animal surveillance programmes on the island was that of Avian Influenza and that if a case had been detected, it would have been reported immediately to the World Organization for Animal Health. CARPHA said that in the Caribbean, the 2009 H1N1 influenza virus is the most commonly identified influenza virus circulating in the region and this is not an unexpected finding. “There have been no deaths related to this incident and all patients have recovered and been discharged from hospital. In addition, ministries of health in the region are aware of the situation and are closely monitoring their health facilities.” CARPHA and PAHO said they were taking the opportunity to advise members of the public to practice respiratory hygiene measures in order to reduce the risk of transmission of influenza and other respiratory viruses. (Excerpted from Caribbean News)

Jamaica moves to ratify Arms Trade Treaty


rime Minister Portia Simpson Miller says Jamaica is currently “undertaking efforts towards ratification of the Arms Trade Treaty”. The landmark Treaty, which regulates the international trade in conventional arms, from small arms to battle tanks, combat aircraft and warships, was adopted by the General Assembly of the United Nations on April 2, 2013. According to the UN, the treaty will foster peace and security by putting a stop to destabilizing arms flows to conflict regions; prevent human rights abusers and violators of the law of war from being supplied with arms; and will help keep warlords, pirates, and gangs from acquiring these deadly tools. In her address to the 68th Session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York Saturday, Simpson Miller welcomed the treaty while hitting out

against transnational organized crime. “Transnational organised criminal enterprises wreak havoc on economies and challenge the capacities of states to deal with these threats. No country is immune to the direct or indirect effects of the scourge of transnational crime,” she said. The prime minister contended that increased collaboration is necessary in confronting such threats to human development. “To this end, we welcome the recent opening for signature of the landmark Arms Trade Treaty in June of this year, which represents one of the many steps that the international community must take towards defeating terrorism, crime and violence,” she indicated. Simpson Miller further pointed out that bilateral and regional cooperation through information sharing, capacity building and as-

Jamaica’s Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller during her address at the 68th United Nations General Assembly in New York Saturday (JIS photo)

sistance are integral in dealing with crime and violence and security issues. In the meantime, the prime minister also reiterated a call for an end to the embargo against Cuba and “extra-territorial measures which target third world countries.” She noted that the trade and economic embargo against Cuba has caused untold hardships to its people and has no place in the 21st century. (JIS)



week ending October 3, 2013 |

Caricom, Spain to cooperate NIS expenditures in Guyana on US$1.1 million citizen topped Gy$11.33 billion last year G security programme

Director of the AECID’s Department for Cooperation with Latin America and the Caribbean, Rafael Garranzo García


he Caribbean Community (Caricom) and Spain will collaborate on a citizen security project that will focus on youth and gender issues. The CaricomSpain Citizen Security Project was signed off on September 25, during discussions between representatives of the Caricom Secretariat and the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation for Development (AECID), to formalise approvals for new regional interventions for the 20132014 period. The US$1.1 million total investment of the Caricom-Spain Joint Fund in the activities approved for the 20132014 cooperation programme will consist of both cash and in-kind contributions of the parties to the joint fund. The interventions under the project focus on support for the prevention and reduction of

youth on youth violence in schools and communities in five Caricom member states, and support for the implementation of youth entrepreneurship training through the Creative for Employment and Business Opportunity (CEBO) Programme in 10 Caricom member states. These interventions will be implemented in large part by the Caricom Secretariat and will entail collaboration with national public and private sectors, civil society partners and other stakeholders. Last Wednesday’s discussions served as a follow up to the second meeting of the Joint Technical Committee to the Joint Fund, which was hosted on September 11 at the embassy of Spain, in Portof-Spain Trinidad. There, Spanish high-level officials, led by Rafael Garranzo

Garcia, director of the AECID’s Department for Cooperation with Latin America and the Caribbean (DCALC) in Madrid, and the ambassador of Spain accredited to Caricom, Joaquin de Aristegui, met with senior officials of the Caricom Secretariat. The Joint Technical Committee, which is established by the addendum to the agreement on Scientific and Technical Cooperation between Caricom and the Kingdom of Spain, is charged with proposing and approving the implementation of regional development programmes and projects, monitoring those programmes and projects, and overseeing the operations of the joint fund. The second meeting of the Joint Technical Committee also reviewed the progress of current institutional strengthening and economic development projects, and agreed on the systems and resources required for effective management and operations of the joint fund for the current period. Despite the grave economic and financial crises, which the country has been battling in recent times, the government of Spain has continued to provide important technical and financial assistance for development in the region, a sign of commitment to its engagement with the member states and peoples of Caricom. (Guyana Times)

De Coteau not ready to quit TT politics


espite a major health scare last week which left him hospitalised for three days, Trinidad and Tobago’s Minister of Gender, Youth and Child Development, Clifton De Coteau is not ready to quit politics. “Now you really want me to dead,” De Coteau told TT media Monday during an interview at his home in Gajadhar Lands, Princes Town. “I know I have to take it lightly, but while I am at home recuperating, I am still going to try my best to serve my constituents. There is work to be done, you know.” De Coteau is confident that he will recover fully, and was happy that medical tests done last Wednesday found that there was “no acute inter-cranial haemorrhage” Preliminary reports had suggested that he had suffered bleeding on the brain De Coteau, who is also the Member of Parliament for Moruga/Tableland, is now at home recuperating after being discharged on Sunday from the SurgiMed Medical Centre, San

A jovial Minister of Gender Affairs, Clifton De Coteau at his home in Princes Town after he fell ill last week. (TT Newsday photo)

Fernando, where he had been warded since last Wednesday, after falling ill at home. He was recently appointed to the gender, youth and child development ministry after having served in the ministry of national diversity and social integration. (Excerpted from TT Newsday)

uyana’s National I n s u r a n c e S c h e m e Chairman, Dr Roger Luncheon said contribution revenue for last year stood at Gy$11.32 billion, but the scheme paid out Gy$11.33 billion in benefits. He made the disclosure in an address at the scheme’s 44th anniversary celebrations. Luncheon, who is also head of the Presidential Secretariat, said although the spectre of an imminent dire situation is highly exaggerated, the scheme’s financial viability does evoke apprehension among the informed. “Essentially, the scheme’s expenditure growth is outstripping revenue growth. Contribution income, the main ingredient of revenue, was Gy$ 11.32 billion in 2012, while benefits expenditure, the main ingredient of expenditure, was Gy$11.33 billion.” According to him as is known, long-term benefits dominate the benefits profile with more than 43,000 pensioners receiving payments at July 2013. He said the aging population and longer longevity has impacted significantly on this growth

NIS Chairman Dr Roger Luncheon

in benefit expenditure, noting that non-coercive methods in enrolling the self employed has had inconsequential results in population size over the years. At the end of 2012, the active population of the employed contributors numbered 117,219, while the active population of self-employed contributors was only 8791. The NIS chairman said the self-employed anomaly is evident in the face of the size of the parallel economy in Guyana. “Importantly, the contribution rate has seen occasional annual increases in the last decade.” M e a n w h i l e , Luncheon said NIS continued to offer a pension indexed to minimum

wages in the public service with a wide range of short-term benefits to contributors and pensioners. “The end result is predictable. Expenditure growth exceeds that of revenue. The NIS fund is, therefore, being used to meet the operational deficits currently being incurred.” As a result, he said the NIS fund has failed to show growth over the recent years as deficits in operational costs have been financed from the savings in the fund. “In 2011, the fund was Gy$30,410,427,000, while the 2012 unaudited fund was Gy$30,214,987,000. The eighth actuarial report on the scheme’s financial status disclosed details of this situation and made concrete proposals/ recommendations about solutions,” he stated.


According to Luncheon, nationwide public consultations at that time provided ample evidence of concern among stakeholders. He said a general principled approach must include increased revenue collection and controlled expenditure growth. (Excerpted from Guyana Times)


feature | week ending October 3, 2013

and director of the Amy Jacques Youth Club. "I feel great! It's a dream come true and I was praying for something like this to happen and that God would send help from somewhere." Treasurer of the Amy Jacques club Michael Innerarity was equally moved. "I am really glad with the work that is being done. This will definitely motivate more members of the community to come out and support our club," he said. "This initiative by the visitors from Canada will go a long way, and definitely, by next week, we will see an influx of persons to our club meetings." Innerarity added that the centre has been of great benefit to the community and that Sunday’s upgrading will go a long way in ensuring that the work continues. "Once we are able to engage more people in the community, especially our young people, we will be able to mould their communication and their social skills and that is one of our main goals," he said. Speaking on behalf of the crew, sub-lieutenant Stephen Boudreau said he was very excited about working in the island and getting the opportunity to experience the Jamaican culture, which is world renowned. "It's something to definitely experience first-hand and we are happy to lend a helping hand in any way we can. So, when we heard we had an opportunity to


Members of the Jamaica Defence Force work alongside sailors from the Royal Canadian Navy to help paint the computer centre and Internet café. (Jamaica Observer photos)

t was a joyous occasion for residents of Jacques Road in Mountain View, Kingston, Jamaica, Sunday, when members of the Royal Canadian Navy docked. The Canadian sailors, part of the crew of HMCS Preserve, which docked in the Kingston Harbour on the weekend, renovated the Jacques Road Homework Centre as well as a computer centre and Internet café. The work included painting, installation of windows, doors and bookshelves and electrical wiring at the computer centre. High Commissioner of Canada to Jamaica Robert Ready, who was instrumental in getting the project done, said it was a very good initiative for Canada and the Canadian Navy to be involved with. "When our vessels make a stop in port, our crew likes to have a community service project and so, when we heard about this, we worked to identify this project," said the high commissioner. Ready was a part of the work team, which also included volunteers from Youth Opportunities Unlimited, the Jamaica Defence Force and Cuso International, a non-profit development organisation. He added: "I think it's a great project for the community. It's a community that is obviously proud of itself and this centre has the focus of the community and is about the future of the kids and is provid-

President of Jacques Road Parenting Committee and director of Amy Jacques Youth Club AnnMarie Lynch (right) shares a light moment with volunteers from Cuso International.

ing them with a space to do their lessons and to get on to computers and to become more technologically literate." Meanwhile, the executive members of the community organisation were elated with the intervention of the Canadians. "I can't explain how I feel," said Ann Marie Lynch, president of the Jacques Road Parenting Committee

come and to share some of our expertise we were happy to do so," he said. "Plus," he added, "I wouldn't get to experience this part of Jamaica on my own as a tourist, so it's really a fascinating thing to see how things are, and my mom is a Jamaican so it's really exciting to come here." (Jamaica Observer)

Guyana represented on World Scout Bureau


cout Association of Guyana (SAG) Chief Commissioner Zaida Joaquin was last Friday elected as a member of the InterAmerican Scout Committee (ISC) of the World Scout Bureau, Inter-American region. Joaquin was Guyana’s first female chief commissioner and now the first SAG member to be elected to the World Scout Bureau. The Inter-American Scout Region is composed of all the national scout associations that are recognised by the world organisation of the scout

movement located in North America, South America, Central America and the Caribbean. The ISC is the body that manages and administers the Inter-American Scout Organisation on the basis of objectives, policies and action lines established by the conference. Its purpose is to approve the regional plan; act as an advisory body of the World Scout Committee in matters relating to the Inter-American region; encourage, promote and support the global, regional and sub-regional events carried out in the region; and act on

behalf of the Inter-American Scout Conference, among its sessions. The committee is composed of 10 elected members in a way that no more than one member of the same national scout organisation is allowed. These members exercise their function on a voluntary manner, for six years, renewing five of them at the conference when it meets every three years. Joaquin joined the SAG in 1994 as an assistant cub scout leader. She has served as the group scout leader for St Margaret’s Scout Group. She also served the SAG

as national treasurer, district commissioner, international commissioner, and national training commissioner. Currently, she holds the position of chief commissioner and is president of the Caribbean Steering Committee. She has participated in various InterAmerican and World Scout conferences and in the World Scout Jamboree 2007. She has participated in eight Caribbean scout conferences, Caribbean cuborees and jamborees, representing Guyana and the region honourably. (Guyana Times)

SAG Chief Commissioner Zaida Joaquin



week ending October 3, 2013 |


bout 01:45h on Sunday morning, before a sleepy almost packed National Cultural Centre in Guyana, Miss Region Five Analisa Andrews, 21, of Moraikabai was crowned Miss Amerindian Heritage 2013 after six hours of exhilarating competition. Andrews, an aspiring accountant, won the judges hearts as she mesmerised them from the beginning of the competition to the end. She sealed the deal when she answered the question: “The theme for Amerindian Heritage Month is ‘honouring our culture, advancing our future’; what does this mean to you?”

Proud of tradition

In response, she confidently and eloquently said: “Honouring our culture means to me that I should be proud of my tradition, my culture, my history, my ancestors and even though changes are occurring everyday in our lives, for example, technology, I

shouldn’t forget where I came from by always preserving my culture, but at the same time advancing the future-meaning to take my education seriously, and move on.” The newly-crowned queen enjoys delicious servings of crispy fried otocuma (tocuma worms), with thin cassava bread and a cool glass of cassiri. She also enjoys making people laugh, and loves a good game of cricket during her spare time. The beauty believes that youths have an integral role to play in the development of their respective communities; hence, she chose “Youth leadership in Amerindian communities” as her platform, which she competently advocated for during the competition. Coming in as first runnerup was Miss Region Three, Letitia Sacajawea Daniels, 19, of Santa- Aratak in the Kamuni Creek, while the second runner-up spot was captured by Miss Region Seven, Gleary Williams, 21, who hails

from Batavia, in the Lower Cuyuni River, Region Seven. Copping the third runnerup spot was Miss Region Six, Shevon Hyderkhan, 19, of Siparuta, a tiny village, 53 km down the Corentyne River, and rounding off the top five was Miss Region Eight, Vickiola Aaron, 19, of Paramakatoi. The Miss Congeniality prize went to Danielle Felicity Graciela Calistro, 19, of Kabakaburi, Region Two while Miss Region Three, Letitia Sacajawea Daniels copped the Best Talent Prize. Gail Robeiro, 20, of St Ignatius Village, Region Nine, took the prize for Best Traditional Outfit.

Hard work

Speaking with Guyanese media immediately after being crowned with the first ever traditional crown made from the feathers of four species of bird, including the eagle, Andrews expressed her excitement to have won the title, noting that it was achieved through hard work.

All hail the queen! Newly crowned Miss Amerindian Heritage Analisa Andrews of Moraikobai raises her hands in appreciation for the crowd, minutes after being announced the winner of the pageant (Carl Croker photo)

With a painted smiling face, the newly-crowned queen said nothing comes easily, but at the same time she feels blessed to have won the title, which will now give her the leverage to work on her public speaking skills.

unteered with the project in November 2011. According to Walker, the experience since then has been life-changing. "The experience has been very rewarding," she shared. "There have been several benefits which include excellent international leadership and work experience, a host of friends and contacts in the dental field, and improved public speaking capabilities." Twenty-year-old twins Roshane and Oshane Dennis joined

Former volunteer and current in-country project manager for the Great Shape!/ Sandals Foundation dental programme 1,000 Smiles, Salli-Jo Walker (right), oversees a dental procedure along with one of the lead dentists at a makeshift dental clinic.


he sounds of whirring machines interspersed with light chatter permeated the operatory while patients lay anxiously in their dental chairs waiting for their procedures to be completed. Outside, scores of persons were waiting in line to be seen, as the Great Shape! Inc/Sandals Foundation 1,000 Smiles project got under way recently in Jamaica. 1,000 Smiles has been providing free access to dental care and education for Jamaican families for the last 11 years, benefiting over 120,000 Jamaicans. Forming the Great Shape! leadership

team and working diligently behind the scenes to create thousands of smiles, is a group of young Jamaicans. Former dental hygiene student, 20-yearold Kristin Lugg, joined the Great Shape! Inc/ Sandals Foundation 1,000 Smiles project in August through a volunteer arrangement with the University of Technology. "The Great Shape!/ Sandals Foundation partnership gives me vital first-hand exposure to dental best practices," she said.


Although it has only been a few weeks since

she has been volunteering with 1,000 Smiles, Lugg sees the experience as an eye-opener. "I have seen the need for increased dental support in the rural communities in which we have worked, and how the programme is trying to address some of these needs. It's heart-warming to see how grateful people are. I have also seen the sacrifice that our team has made coming from overseas and from other parts of the country to give their time freely," she noted. Salli-Jo Walker, 23, who also studied dental hygiene at the University of Technology, first vol-

The queen won herself Gy$250,000, among other prizes, while the first runner-up secured Gy$150,000 and other prizes, and the third runner-up pocketed Gy$100,000 with other fabulous prizes. (Guyana Times)

the programme in 2010, after they were discovered by Great Shape! Executive Director Joseph Wright. The Dennis twins, who are professional drummers, now provide technical support to the Great Shape! team, after having received training and skills development with the programme.

Developing programme

Walker, who has since 2013 taken on the position of in-country project manager for Great Shape! 1,000

Smiles, said being able to gain fruitful employment through a charity organisation is an added benefit. "But the behind-thescenes work is no small job; it requires a lot of effort and dedication. I am grateful though to be a part of the team charged with developing this programme--it compels me to harness my innovative side in order to constantly elevate our standards of operation." (Excerpted from Guyana Times)


feature | week ending October 3, 2013


uyanese Bryan Persaud, 21, of Lot 16 B Hampshire, Corentyne, Berbice, is the proud winner of an all expenses VIP trip for two to see international singing sensation Beyonce in New York City later this year. The young man, who sent almost 450 text messages during the sixweek promotion, was in the company of his girlfriend and other relatives during the final drawing at the Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL), Mandela Avenue office on Saturday. It is most obvious that the young man will take his girlfriend on the trip, providing that they both have U.S. visas. The young man told Guyanese media that from the initial stage, he was optimistic of winning the competition but,


op star Rihanna has generated more than Bd$20 million in exposure for Barbados over the life of the three-year deal the megastar has with the Barbados Tourism Authority. Minister of Tourism Richard Sealy quoted the figure over the weekend, as he defended government’s decision to spend millions of dollars on the deal, which was signed with the megastar in 2011. Rihanna is set for her second major concert in Barbados on November 1 as part of her Diamonds world tour. Sealy commented on the matter at the official opening of a con-


declared that he is not a fan of Beyonce. He also confirmed that he is not the holder of a U.S. visa and intends to apply as soon as next week. Persaud also thanked DDL for affording him the opportunity to win the trip and said he hopes to make the best out of it. He encouraged persons to continue drinking Pepsi and realise their dreams. DDL Executive Sales Manager Larry Wills expressed satisfaction with the participation in the competition. They received 15,000 entries, after which 15 persons were shortlisted to be a part of the final draw. Out of the 15 persons, eight were from Berbice, one from Essequibo and six from Georgetown and Demerara. He explained that

ference on Employee Engagement in the Digital Age-The Role of Communications, hosted by the International Association of Business Communications at the Barbados Hilton. He also gave details about another tourism initiative, the National Tourism Host programme. Meanwhile, at another event last week, Sealy revealed that Barbados is seeking to increase its tourism arrivals from Europe, including from the Kingdom of Belgium. The government minister acknowledged that the number of tourists coming from Belgium was very small, but noted that of-

he St. Lucia Toronto Aid Action Group (STAAG) will be participating in the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation “run for the cure” annual event set to take place this Sunday, October 6th 2013. STAAG is a newly formed group of dedicated St. Lucians, a release from the group stated. “As part of its mandate, the group under the leadership of the president Malcolm Hinkson and the vice-president Jeannie Beausoleil, is committed to raising the awareness of Caribbean peoples in Toronto regarding health concerns particularly in the area of breast and prostate cancer,” it added. Every year, thousands of Canadians join the breast cancer movement and participate in the CIBC ‘run for the cure’ with their families, friends and co-workers.

persons were selected based on the amount of entries they would have submitted during the promotion. He said over the duration of the competition, more than 200 persons would have received various prizes, ranging from Sony earphones to smart watches, among other fabulous giveaways. Wills said the promotion does not cover for U.S. visas as this will have to be secured by the winners. He said if by any chance the U.S. embassy refuses to offer a visa to the winner, the offer will go to the next person in line in the final three. Again, he explained if that person cannot secure a visa, it goes to the other contestant. It will be this way until someone becomes eligible. At the draw on

Jamaican singers star alongside Canada-based actress in upcoming film Bryan Persaud displays his winning draw

Saturday, the 15 finalists anxiously participated in the game, which saw three persons advancing to the next round. They were given the opportunity to switch numbers, but refused. As they popped the balloon to see their prizes, there was some sense of nervousness. The first balloon was the one with the grand prize while the second and third each had a Sony tablet. (Guyana Times)

Jeremy Whittaker, film director/ producer of ‘Destiny’.


Rihanna is set for her second major concert in Barbados on November 1 as part of her Diamonds world tour.

ficials in Barbados had increased their efforts to attract visitors from Continental Europe. He described Barbados as a quality

destination with a full range of hotels, which the rich and famous, as well as those working within a budget, could utilise.

STAAG is a newly formed group of dedicated St. Lucians

ilm director/producer Jeremy Whittaker has wrapped shooting for his movie ‘Destiny,’ which stars Jamaican singers, Christopher Martin, Karian Sang and Kadeem Wilson. Whittaker, 34, recently spoke with Jamaican media about the project at the Tuff Gong studio in Kingston. “It's really a romantic drama. It's about family and mix up," he said. The movie is based around Lisa Collen (played by Jamaican-born, Canada-based Sang) who visits Jamaica from Toronto, Canada to sell her family's estate. She gets involved with Sean, a recording artiste (played by Martin) and re-connects with her family. "From there the twist and turns to romance gets heated up," Whittaker revealed. ‘Destiny’ cost just under US$1 million and was completed filming earlier in September in several locations across Jamaica including Montego Bay, St Mary and Kingston. He had high praise for Martin, who is one of the popular vocalists in contemporary dancehall. Best known for songs such as ‘Cheater's Prayer’, ‘Chill Spot’ and ‘Take My Wings’, Martin had no acting experience. "He exceeded all of my expectations," said Whittaker. Making cameo appearances in ‘Destiny’ are Spice, Cathy Levy, Ity (of comedy duo Ity and Fancy Cat), veteran actor Munair Zacca and Kevoy Burton. ‘Destiny’ is co-written by Whittaker and Paul O Beale. It is the first project in a "10-year plan" for Whittaker's Grasshopper Productions. He expects it to be released by June next year. The soundtrack was produced by Clive Hunt and has songs by Martin, Busy Signal, Yvad, Spice Sly and Robbie and Chronixx. Whittaker was born in Jamaica but migrated to Canada as a teenager and attended the University of Toronto, majoring in Communication, Culture and Information Technology (CCIT). He also studied film production. After graduating, Whittaker returned to Jamaica. He worked at Television Jamaica, Ltd as producer for the morning magazine show, Smile Jamaica. (Jamaica Observer)



week ending October 3, 2013 |

Queen’s College - deeply rooted in Guyana’s rich history and heritage


uyana is a nation that has a colourful history and is home to several cultures. For this reason, the richness and diversity of its past, is critical to preserve its heritage. The relevant organisation, the National Trust of Guyana, is a government enterprise whose mandate propels its commitment to the preservation and conservation of historic buildings and sites in Guyana. It aims to enlighten

not only has profound standards, but a rich cultural history. Opened originally as a school for boys, it was called the Queen’s College Grammar School for Boys. Founded in 1844 by Reverend William Percy Austin, D. D., Bishop of British Guiana, its first assembly consisted of a mere fifteen boys. While Reverend Austin was of an Anglican background, he sought to establish the school with a

Law Courts. The school moved in 1845 to Main and Quamina (then Murray) streets, with a student body of seventy. Again in 1854 it was relocated to its first formal building at Carmichael and Quamina streets, currently home to Bishops’ High School. Later in 1876 its administration was transferred to the state making it a "colonial institution" and thus given the name "Queens College". Before settling at its current lo-

Queen’s College, Georgetown, Aerial view. Main building is 800 feet long.

the public about various events, aspects, symbols, landmarks and structures, which has moulded Guyana’s rich and diverse heritage. As September came to a close; the month in which Guyana celebrated and promoted education; the Trust put spotlight on one of the country’s oldest educational institutions, Queen’s College, which,

tolerance for, and interest in, attracting non– Anglicans. However, due to its associated origin, the school’s first administration consisted only of members of the Church of England. It was located at the Old Colony House in 1844-the compound that now houses the Guyana High Courts, previously known as the Victoria

cation in Thomas Lands, at Camp and Thomas roads, it had also occupied the site at which the ministry of health is now housed, on Vlissengen Road and Brickdam. At the Thomas Lands site, the building was officially opened in 1951, maintaining high standards throughout the years, later to be converted to a co-educational institution in the 1970s.

The new construction that replaced the section destroyed by fire

Unfortunately, fire struck on November 16, 1997, where what was considered the heart of the building, was lost. This section included the auditorium, staff room, badminton court, table tennis lounge, bicycle shed and canteen. However, it was not long before arrangements were made to relocate students to ensure their educational instruction. And later, plans moved apace to reconstruct the portion lost in the fire. This project was completed and later dedicated on September 19, 2003. Queen’s College, like many other buildings bears testimony to Guyana’s historic past, and is merely one which has been partly lost to fire. Many others are daily being vandalised and over time demolished, and others lost to fires as well. Georgetown, a pre-

dominantly wooden city, is one which cannot afford to lose its heritage. While monuments or structures form part of Guyanese heritage, other intangible elements are part of the fabric of their heritage also. This too needs to be maintained; the institution of the school is one such element since this point at

which knowledge is imparted, an appreciation and understanding develops. The institution of the school is therefore a pivotal link in the preservation of Guyana’s heritage, which is otherwise destroyed or damaged due to lack of knowledge or ignorance. (By Bhavanna Gossai, National Trust, 2010)

Older section of the school showing classrooms

Female Jamaican business owners learn to boost income


everal female Jamaican business owners spent last weekend in the classroom learning how to boost their income through Internet usage as part of a Web Entrepreneurship Bootcamp (WEB) that was sponsored by the Bureau of Women's Affairs (BWA) and the Dispute Resolution Foundation (DRF). The initiative was one of the several projects that have been spearheaded under the Way Out Project, which is aimed at gender mainstreaming. The project has trained over 190 pre-micro and micro entrepreneurs so far, as part of efforts to expand and formalise the economic activities of women in informal businesses. Participants in the WEB Initiative were given hands-on training in information communications technology over two days at the

University of Technology. Day one's session saw the group learning about the basics of computer literacy in the university's School of Computing and Information Technology lab, and for day two, they were taught to maximise their new computer and Internet skills to create financial opportunities. The second day's session was held in the Faculty of Engineering and also allowed the women to explore issues such as traditional versus virtual businesses, and addressed some of the common myths associated with the Internet. Small business owner Francine Myrie said the sessions have made her more confident about utilising the technology to help with her daily operations. "In this economic climate, I know it is important to be up to speed with technology be-

Development Programme that was designed by the BWA and the DRF. Under this programme women were sensitised in areas of gender mainstreaming, business mediation, sexual harassment in the workplace, developing business plans and responding to natural disasters and emergencies, among other things.

Life-changing training

Executive director of the Bureau of Women's Affairs, Faith Webster, believes the project will serve the women well (Jamaica Observer photo)

cause that's what's going to help make my business run more efficiently and help me to eventually expand. I am now ready to put all I've learnt into practice," she said. The WEB project is an expansion of an Entrepreneurial

Project Manager for The Way Out initiative, Sharifa Wright, said the WEB project was yet another project to help Jamaican women realise their full potential. "We are happy to have been able to offer this life-changing and empowering training to these micro business owners. This will help to not just bolster their businesses but ultimately contribute to a sustained and thriving micro and small business sector," she

said. Meanwhile, executive director of the Bureau of Women's Affairs, Faith Webster, believes the project will serve the women well. "WEB provided women with an opportunity to network while getting advice and training from industry experts, learn how to use the internet to boost income, and increase their technology use in order to better manage and track business activities," she said. The bootcamp was done in partnership with the Scotiabank Chair in Entrepreneurship and Development, the Sapna Initiative in the School of Computing and Information Technology at UTech, Internet Income Jamaica and the Institute of Law and Economics. (Excerpted from Jamaica Observer)


feature |week ending October 3, 2013

Focus on the Guyana/Norway climate change partnership


n the previous article, we discussed Guyana’s Low Carbon Development Strategy (LCDS) and the major projects that are being implemented. This week we will examine one of the main partnerships that Guyana has entered into to support the implementation of the LCDS–the Guyana and Norway partnership. The governments of Guyana and Norway signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on November 9, 2009 regarding cooperation on issues related to the fight against climate change, in particular those concerning Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation Plus (REDD+). We learnt from previous articles that worldwide, deforestation is a leading cause of climate change and that Guyana has placed great emphasis on maintaining a low deforestation rate. Under the Norway agreement, Guyana is being paid for its performance through an incentive structure that rewards the country for keeping deforestation below an agreed reference level, as well as avoiding increased forest degradation. Norway has committed to providing Guyana

Under the Norway agreement, Guyana is being paid for its performance through an incentive structure that rewards the country for keeping deforestation below an agreed reference level, as well as avoiding increased forest degradation

up to US$250 million to 2015, depending on the country’s delivery of results as measured against two sets of indicators: those of Enabling Activities, and REDD+ Performance Indicators. To help facilitate such an agreement, the governments have decided to pilot an incentive structure and once guidance becomes available at the international level, especially through the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Guyana-Norway partnership will be adjusted accordingly. Until then, payments are calculated based on Guyana’s performance as measured, and in-

dependently verified, against the two sets of indicators. A Joint Concept Note (JCN) complements the MoU and outlines the basis of the work to be undertaken between Guyana and Norway. It specifies the key activities that the government of Guyana needs to achieve in order for payments to be made. The Guyana REDD+ Investment Fund (GRIF) was established as the multi-partner financial mechanism to channel the funds received from the government of Norway to Guyana. Payments to the GRIF are being made by the government of Norway until Guyana establishes additional partners.

To date, considerable progress has been made in the Guyana-Norway cooperation and in other related efforts. Guyana has met all the requirements specified within the agreement and has since earned three sets of payments totalling US$115 million. Guyana is currently working towards meeting the requirements to receive a fourth payment from Norway. In general, the payments from Norway are being used to implement projects that will create opportunities, economic diversification, building resilience to climate change and maintaining and securing Guyana’s forest.

Eight-year-old Jamaican boy given four months to live - needs Ja$4 million to do life-saving radiation surgery


amaican Joshua McFarlane at age eight was earlier this year diagnosed with a brain tumour so severe that medical professionals gave him four months to live. Six months have since passed and he is still hanging on. But the "fighter" needs over Ja$4 million to undergo a life-saving radiation surgery at the Miami Neuroscience Centre in the United States, and his guardians are asking the public for assistance in securing the funds. It is not clear when the abnormal lesion on Joshua's brain stem started to develop, but his mother, Jacinth Renford, said that things took a turn for the worse in March. According to Renford, one evening the second


grader of Boundbrook Primary School in Portland, arrived home and complained of a headache. The mother said that she never took her son's complaint too seriously, and gave him some painkillers before she told him to rest. Things seemed alright the next morning and Joshua was sent to school, Renford stated. But again he returned home complaining of a "splitting headache". She then rushed her son to the Port Antonio Hospital where doctors administered several tests on him. At first glance, Joshua looks like a normal child, but a closer inspection reveals the severe impact of his illness. In addition to throbbing headaches, Joshua appears constantly woozy. Some of

his facial features have been altered, and the veins in his face have become abnormally pronounced above the skin. He has trouble balancing when he stands and walks, and he also has problems urinating, said his mother. Before Joshua became sick, his mother worked as an office attendant at a popular money transfer outlet. One day, however, her employer asked her to resign because she was spending too much time away from work tending to him. According to the mother, it will cost approximately US$18,000 for her son to receive the radiation treatment abroad. Post- surgery medication and treatment will cost an additional US$21,000. While the radiation

Eight-year-old Jamaican Joshua McFarlane was diagnosed with a brain tumour earlier this year (Jamaica Observer photo)

surgery can be done in Jamaica, the follow-up treatments are only offered overseas, she said. Renford said that she has already secured a United States visa, with the help of the Miami Neuroscience Centre, for her son to travel to that country. Persons who would like to contribute to Joshua's surgery are asked to make donations at NCB account number: 844-080670. (Excerpted from Jamaica Observer)


By Anu Dev

e can try to be prepared for every eventuality. We can do our best to try to figure out what’s ahead, but the truth is we’re not in charge of our external environment. We can certainly try to predict how the people around us will act or behave, but we can never be 100 per cent sure. We have to learn to improvise, or at least be open to the concept of having to make the best of what circumstances we’re in. We have to try to be a bit more flexible, to be willing to accept things for being what they are, instead of how we want them to be. And once we don’t spend time panicking about things not being exactly as we wanted them to be, and instead think up a new plan of action, we might be surprised that the end result might be better than expected. Unexpected things will always come up and may be in our preparations, we should start preparing ourselves to have to think on the spot or make quick decisions, instead of just preparing for a single event. It’s not the end of the world if you’re missing some ingredients from whatever you planned on cooking, just alter the dish and create something new. We could go into a class room to teach a group of kids math, expecting them to be excited and enthusiastic about the subject already, when in reality, they’re all falling asleep at their desks, drooling as they’re anticipating dinner. So what should that teacher do? Improvise! Try to MAKE the subject interesting, use videos, visual aids, and relate the subject matter to real life situations. One of the biggest complaints students in math classes are often times heard repeating is, “When will I ever use this in real life?” As a teacher, you should help them realise the possible ways in which they might actually use trigonometry outside of school. Some kids are more mathsoriented, and naturally have a liking for math, but what about the others? You have to come up with ways to teach the subject so that they’ll actually want to learn it. And every day we’re thrust into new and unexpected situations. We could show up at a meeting, expecting other people to take charge, but for whatever reason, they just can’t. We could be the ones who step up to the plate. We can adapt to the new role of leader and sometimes we’ll find that it’s a position we thrive in. And of course there are the little improvisations we make every day. Singing a song and can’t remember all of the lyrics? Most of us just make up new ones. Do the new lyrics always make perfect sense? No, but they allowed us to finish the song while keeping in tune. We need to be more willing to accept circumstances for being what they are and adapting to do the best we can. As Gandhi once said, “Be the change you want to see in the world”.



week ending October 3, 2013 |

Abhishek says he never whistled at Aishwarya while wooing her


ctor Abhishek Bachchan has admitted that his wife Aishwarya Rai is a beautiful woman. However, he said that he had nev-

er whistled at her, but courted her through his gestures, emotions, and words. "I am used to people whistling at my wife...see my wife then you will know why I am saying this. I have never whistled at her to woo her...I don't think it's the right thing to do. I courted her through my gesture, emotions and words," said Abhishek. Interjecting, Aishwarya said: "This is why I am married to him." Abhishek, who has been married to Aishwarya for seven years now, said she is a wonderful cook and she makes good deserts. "She cooks really fact she makes good deserts. When we were newly-married, there is a Bengali custom where the girl has to make some sweet and she prepared halwa, which was too good. (TOI)

‘Comedy is fun, not easy’ - Soha Ali Khan


ctor Hrithik Roshan, who will be seen as a superhero in his filmmaker father's movie ‘Krrish 3’, says his dad is his superhero. Hrithik also credited his father with popularising the superhero genre in Bollywood with the ‘Krrish’ franchise, which started with ‘Koi Mil Gaya’. “I am thankful to my dad. If he didn't exist, there would have been no superhero genre in Indian cinema. He has broken all the barriers and has made it possible. This is because of the power of his conviction. For me, my father is my superhero,” ‛Hrithik told reporters at the launch of ‘Krrish 3’ merchandise.

‘Live-in relationship is for the commitment-phobic’ – Sonam


ctress Soha Ali Khan, who has been part of intense and dark films in the past, will now be seen in a comedy film ‘War Chhod Na Yaar’. She said comedy is fun, but it's not easy. "I always thought films I have done are intense and in many of my films either my husband or my boyfriend dies. I think it's really hard to cry on screen. I thought of doing a film in which I won't be required to cry. "I thought it will be easy, but it isn't so. Comedy is fun, but it's not too easy. Comedy all depends on the comic timing and this you can't learn from anybody. It should come naturally," Soha told IANS. Directed by Faraz Haider 'War


Chhod Na Yaar' also features Sharman Joshi and Jaaved Jaaferi. The film is slated for an Oct 11 release. (TOI)

Cancer has an answer, says Manisha Koirala


n a joint effort to raise awareness about cancer, Bollywood actress Manisha Koirala and cricketer Yuvraj Singh recently pepped up millions of people affected with the ailment, asserting "if we can, you can". Rejecting the notion "cancer has no answer", both Koirala and Singh valiantly fought and overcame the life-

threatening disease. The Bollywood actress and the aggressive left-handed batsman spoke about the traumatic moment when they came to know of their affliction, followed by agonising and tough treatment process, but finally-the victory over cancer. Koirala, who dislikes the term "cancer survivor" as it sounds "meek", called herself a "cancer crusader". "A crusader has the attitude, which gives you strength, because that is what you need when you are fighting a disease, which may be cancer or some other thing. There is a stigma that cancer means death. No, it is not so. I know lot of people who got cancer, got treatment and are fine. Let us crusade against any kind of challenges," said the actress. (TOI)

onam Kapoor recently spoke with Indian media about superpowers, spending romantic evenings in Paris and becoming a fashion icon, instead of a bespectacled librarian. The following is an excerpt of that interview: If you could have one superpower, what would it be? I'd like to have the power to eradicate corruption from our country. I think as an individual, it affects me in more ways than one.


appy to experiment with his roles, actor Ranbir Kapoor said he could never be in the same league as the three superstar Khans of the industry-Shah Rukh, Salman and Aamir-as they are the "true superstars". "I can never compete with the Khans (Shah Rukh, Salman, Aamir)... they are the true superstars," said Ranbir, who was in the city to promote his movie ‘Besharam.’ ‘Besharam’, which also features Ranbir's actor parents Rishi and Neetu Kapoor, is directed by Abhinav Kashyap. It shows Ranbir in a new light - a "flamboyant", "loud" and street smart character.

"It is a very 'besharam' role...uninhibited role. I took a risk with the role. As an actor, it is my responsibility to do every genre. I am excited, anxious and nervous," said Ranbir, who will start shooting for Anurag Kashyap's ‘Jagga Jasoos’ next month. (TOI)

Suniel Shetty gets training from professional shooter


and since I have worked with her earlier, I know the comfort level she shares with the camera." The director is yet to zero in on the male lead. (TOI)

Did you ever imagine that you would become this fashion icon? Not even in my wildest dream. I was pretty sure that I would end up as a librarian in a university wearing thick glasses; surrounded by loads and loads of books. I'm sure people from my school are still in a state of shock! What is the most romantic thing a guy has ever done for you? Well, there was this guy who really had a thing for me. He followed me till Paris! I was travelling at that point and he jumped countries just to get my attention. I think when people really have affections for you, they persist. Later on, we spent a rather romantic evening together. It became quite special. I will never forget it. Live-in relationships or marriage? Marriage. I think live-in relations are for people who are not sure, and to an extent commitment phobic. (TOI)

‘I can never compete with Khans’ - Ranbir

Veena Malik to get bolder for a psycho thriller eena Malik is all set to do a psychological spine chiller, 'Cottage No. 9'. Director Navin Batra said that, "The plot revolves around a married couple whose relationship gets affected due to one of them suffering from a split personality. Whether it is the husband or the wife with the disorder, (this) will be revealed only in the film." This is the director's second outing with Veena. He added that, "Unlike other actresses—who wear hot pants and minis in real life, but turn 'Savitris' before the camera—Veena has no hang ups. The film has quite a few bold scenes

Asked if his own sons looked up to him as their superhero, Hrithik said: "I always hope that they see me as superhero. Being a father is the biggest chance and opportunity to be a superhero in your life." (TOI)


ctor Suniel Shetty recently visited the shooting range at Mumbai to get training from Delhi based shooter Prithipal Singh

Bedi for the upcoming Bollywood movie ‘Desi Kattey’. Prithipal, who flew to Mumbai to coach the actor said, "It was great experience training Sunielji. Experience with Sunielji was really good as he himself is a sportsman and was very keen to know about my credentials and about shooting sport. He is a keen learner and he said shooting is like meditation, which is very true. He also wants to set up a small range at his place so he can actively get into the sport. In a day’s training, I made him know about the safety, basics of the shooting sports. Initially he was a bit nervous, but after firing few shots he became confident and went on and on." Shetty spent almost an hour at the shooting range. (TOI)


hollywood |week ending October 3, 2013

Katie Holmes hires Pamela Anderson to participate in NYC marathon confidence coach to move on


to raise funds for charity. The 46-year-old has decided to run the 26-mile road race on November 3 to support her actor friend Sean Penn, reported She hopes to raise $500,000 for Penn's non-profit organisation J/P Haitian Relief Organisation that is dedicated to saving lives and bringing sustainable programmes to the Haitian people following the devastating earthquake of 2010. Anderson took to Twitter to share the news. "I'm running the New York Marathon this year and raising funds for the J/P Haitian Relief Organisation," she tweeted. Among the other celebrities planning to complete the run are supermodel Christy Turlington and reality TV star Bill Rancic. (TOI)


The Oscar-winning actor, who regularly commands multi-million dollar pay days for his movies, said money doesn't matter much to him, reported Contactmusic. "My attitude to money? On a 1980 TV series called 'Bosom Buddies' I made USD 5,000 a week. If I had made that kind of money for the rest of my life I would have been happy, honestly. But I have been getting ludicrous sums of money for quite some time. "The best part is not owing money to anyone. Money, though, has never been my driving force. You can live in the biggest and best house in the world, but it can be shit if you are unhappy," he said. The 57-year-old screen legend has earned critical acclaim for movies such as ‘Forrest Gump’, but he admitted that he isn't worried when one of his films flops because it keeps him grounded. (TOI)

ormer ‘Baywatch’ actress Pamela Anderson will compete at the New York City Marathon


atie Holmes, who is struggling to get on with her life after her split form hubby Tom Cruise, has sought professional help in a bid to move on. The 33-year-old actress has been given sole custody of the couple's sixyear-old daughter, Suri, in the divorce settlement. A source told Britain's Grazia magazine after splitting from Cruise, Holmes is keen to find her own voice, Radar Online reported. So she has sought professional help and has employed a confidence coach, who she's been seeing once a week to help her regain who she once was, the source said. Although Katie has no regrets about the split, insiders said that she is struggling to sleep because she has a lot on her mind at the moment.

The source added that the glow and radiance that defined Holmes postsplit seem to have evaporated. It's like she's struggling to regain her own identity while balancing work, motherhood and keeping Suri grounded, the source indicated. (TOI)

Tom Hanks doesn't care about money Sean Penn warns Robert Pattinson

ctor Tom Hanks isn't driven by big paydays and would be just as happy earning small salaries like he did in his early career.

Natalie Portman says motherhood tougher than acting


atalie Portman has confessed that being a mum to her son, Aleph, is much more hard work than any movie role. The 'Black Swan' actress told Elle magazine that she has respect for all mothers of the world as they work harder than anybody else, the Mirror reported. The 32-year-old actress said that she loves being a mother. She added that she was under the impression that mothers don't work at all. However, she asserted that she doesn't want a day off from being a mother to her son. (TOI)

Sandra Bullock vows to quit acting for son


andra Bullock, who adopted baby Louis in 2010, has revealed that she will quit acting if her

work begins to negatively impact on her young son. The Oscar-winning star told Vogue magazine that she doesn't want her son to have pressures brought on by what she does, so if she sees whatever she is doing is affecting him negatively, she will pack up and move to Alaska, Contactmusic reported. Bullock also revealed that recent false speculation suggesting she was dating her married security guard Peter Weireter has also made her question her future in Hollywood. (TOI)

not to hurt daughter Dylan


ean Penn has warned Robert Pattinson about dating his daughter Dylan. The 53-year old American actor re-

portedly had a sit-down with the 27year old English actor to talk about his budding romance with his 22-year-old daughter, as he fears that the 'Twilight' star was on the rebound, reported. According to The Sun, sources revealed that Sean had a chat with Pattinson "about not getting too heavy with his daughter if he's playing the field, as he doesn't want to see her hurt". The couple was spotted kissing and cozying up recently, after the 'Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire' star broke up with Kristen Stewart earlier this year because he was unable to get over her fling with married director Rupert Sanders last July. (TOI)

Why Oprah Winfrey will never marry long-time partner Stedman


prah Winfrey has revealed that she will never, ever marry her long-time partner Stedman and would leave earth as a "never-married" woman. Winfrey, who attended Tina Turner's wedding with German music producer Erwin Bach back in July, said that such a union is just not for her, reported. The talk show queen told Access Hollywood that she thought about hooking up with her beau at Turner's wedding, but then realised that things would not be really different after marriage. Oprah admitted that if she and Stedman had got married, they proba-

bly wouldn't have lasted. She said that she doesn't feel capable of handling responsibilities, which come with the word 'wife'. The 59-year-old added that although Stedman is a traditional man, they have a very untraditional relationship. (TOI)

Pitt buys expensive necklace for Jolie


hile Angelina Jolie and the kids were in Australia scouting locations for her movie ‘Unbroken’, Brad Pitt was in Telluride, US, and Toronto in Canada for film festivals, to promote his film ‘12 Years a Slave’, and then he went to England to work on action-drama ‘Fury’, reported They reunited in Hong Kong last weekend and Jolie brought their twins, Knox and Vivienne, to spend time with their father. The couple then decided to go shopping where Pitt dropped about $300,000 on a diamond necklace for

Jolie plus three watches. (TOI)


week ending October 3, 2013|


he elegantly redesigned Courtyard and grand tenting of Bedford Stuyvesant Restoration Plaza in New York came alive for the launch of “Toast of Brooklyn- A Wine and Food Festival 2013” where collections by Guyanese designers were the evening’s highlight. Serenaded by the Jeff King Band, guests and celebrities enjoyed an evening of wines and spirits from around the world, and indulged in a delightful fashion display featuring pieces by Guyana Fashion Week 2013 designers Sonia Noel, Gem Fraser and Myrna Patterson. “Although I could not be there in person, I was very proud GFW was on show in NY at this prestigious event, and the organizers already indicate we are on for next year,” Sonia Noel declared in an interview with Guyanese media.

Essequibo Nite set for October 18 in Guyana


he annual Essequibo Nite, Exhibition and Fair in Guyana is slated for October 18-19 at the Anna Regina Community Centre Ground. According to a release from the Region Two administration, plans are in the pipelines to host the event, expected to attract thousands of Essequibians. The exhibition, which started several years ago by the late Agriculture Minister Satyadeow Sawh, will be held under the theme “Made in Guyana, Grown in Guyana” with focus on creating a huge networking avenue for both consumers and suppliers. The event over the


Local pottery on display at Essequibo Nite 2012

years has gained recognition, attracting businesses both from within and outside the region. Over the years, the exhibition has attracted over 15,000 persons and also serves as a forum for bringing Essequibians

together. The activity is organised by the Region Two administration with supported from the agriculture ministry, the Guyana Marketing Corporation and the private sector.


feature | week ending October 3, 2013

Trinidadian youths star in international short film T

rinidadian film producer Christopher Din Chong was given the opportunity to produce the docudrama ‘The Singapore Promise’, part of an International Inspirational programme. The British Council, UK Sport and the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) are partners for the programme and it is governed by a charitable organisation. International Inspiration was conceived as part of the official London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games initiative, as a legacy promise to enrich the lives of 12 million children in 20 countries through sport. Football superstar David Beckham is one of the programme’s seven ambassadors. ‘The Singapore Promise’ was made possible through collaborations with Din Chong's organisation - The Forward Ever Foundation that was established to develop film and television projects for youths. Some assistance was also received from C.R.E.A.T.E. Strategies, a full service communication company. The name "The Singapore Promise" refers to the "promise" made by London in Singapore eight years ago to empower and motivate youths through sport. The docudrama was screened on July 22 at the Permanent Mission of

Rodney Charles, Trinidad and Tobago's Ambassador to the United Nations (right) and Christopher Anthony Din Chong, Film Producer and Chairman of the Forward Ever Foundation

the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago to the United Nations in New York, USA. The Trinidad and Tobago edition of International Inspiration will be hosted by six persons. Five minute story segments will feature one several sporting areas-track and field, swimming, cycling, table tennis, archery, martial arts. Each participant will host their own section. Alette Williams, Forward Ever Foundation’s public relations officer said: "The film is a short inspiration-

al documentary that seeks to inspire young person’s using athletes with stories about challenges and struggles. It was done in collaboration with persons mandated by the British High Commission." At the screening in New York Din Chong said: "The mission’s staff said that the docudrama touched on issues that are common to and are dealt with in both countries on a daily basis, such as obesity in children." He said that they also wanted to see more positive films about the youth in Trinidad and Tobago. Melissa Boissiere, Second Secretary Permanent Mission of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago to the United Nations said:"It was indeed a most enlightening and educational experience to view the documentary at the Mission. It showcased a valuable initiative aimed at empowering and improving the lives of the next generation of our country’s leaders." Key figures in the film are Shaquille Roberts, who was one of 20 persons who took part in the Torch Relay at the London Olympic Games and Anthony Kipps who was selected to run with the Paralympic Torch during the London 2012 Paralympic Games. Roberts is the cousin of Olympic gold medalist Keshorn Walcott. Kipps is differentlyabled with his right foot being shorter

Among those featured in the film is Shaquille Roberts, who was among 20 young leaders selected from across the globe to bear the Olympic torch for the London Games last year (TT Guardian file photo)

than his left. The film can be viewed via the internet. (Excerpted from TT Express)

Star of the Week

Kenwah Cho Quan Yi


enwah Cho Quan Yi is a Guyanese model, twotime pageant finalist and double graduate of the University of Guyana. In 2007, a second year student at UG, her foray into pageantry began when, pursuing her diploma in Communication, she entered that year’s Miss India Guyana Pageant. A first runner-up in that event, Kenwah ventured into modelling in 2008, presenting for fashion designer Sonia Noel, Digicel Guyana and Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL). She was also a contestant in Noel’s Guyana Model Search 2008. In November 2008, she graduated with a Communication diploma from UG, while already a registered student pursuing a degree in Economics there. In 2009, Kenwah entered the Miss Bartica Regatta Pageant to earn first runner-up. After this, she took a break from pageantry and modelling to focus on her Economics degree. In November 2011, she graduated with a degree in Economics. Between 2011 and 2012, she worked first as a communication officer at the Government Information Agency then administrative assistant to the UG pro-chancellor. Kenwah is currently working towards establishing herself as an exporter of some of Guyana's best local commodities. She is also creating a proposal to help enhance the lives of children aged 6-13. In addition, she is a part-time volunteer with Youths for Guyana. Her hiatus from pageantry recently ended when she decided to vie for the Miss Guyana Universe 2013 crown. Kenwah stands out as an avid humanitarian and will use the pageant’s stage to not only showcase her beauty and intelligence but to ardently spread awareness on social issues close to her heart.



week ending October 3, 2013|

Four Guyanese in WI lawyers’ cricket squad

Singh’s hat-trick spurs Better Hope XI to OSCL 10/10 trophy By Ravendra Madholall


Charles Ramson Jr

Sanjeev Datadin

our Guyanese lawyers were selected to represent the West Indies lawyers’ cricket team at the upcoming Lawyers’ Cricket World Cup in New Delhi, India, from October 1222. Attorney Charles Ramson Jr, Timothy Jonas, Sanjeev Datadin, and Tejnarine Ramroop are the lawyers from Guyana. The tournament will see lawyers from India, England, Sri Lanka, Australia and Pakistan competing against their West Indian counter-

parts. Eight teams will play in the tournament with each team playing six 40over matches. The two top teams from the round robin format will meet in the final, scheduled for October 22. This will be the fourth lawyers' cricket World Cup after tournaments were held in Hyderabad, India in 2008, Cambridge, England in 2009 and Barbados in 2011. India are the defending champions, having defeated Sri Lanka A in the final of the last tournament in Barbados.


GABB FF hails success of Guyana’s CAC bodybuilding team


Keavon Bess

he Guyana Central American and Caribbean (CAC) bodybuilding team returned with three medals and president of the Guyana Amateur Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation (GABB&FF) Keavon Bess hailed the athletes’ success at a press conference last Thursday at the Guyana Olympic Association (GOA) headquarters. Competing in the Dominican Republic, Devon Davis picked up gold and retained the title in the fly weight division when Alicia Fortune and Kerwin Clark copped bronze medals in the women’s masters and welterweight divisions respectively. At the press conference, Bess congratulated the athletes, noting that Davis’ success was the high point of the outing for the team, especially when Guyana’s national anthem was played.

CAC judge Frank Tucker, who was part of Guyana’s five-member delegation to assist with technical meetings, praised the athletes for their performances. “I was pleasantly surprised at the standard of our athletes. At least we were able to be right up there with the other athletes in the classes that we were represented in. When I looked on stage at our athletes, I felt very proud that we had taken athletes that were in good shape and who were well on top of their game. They were able to provide keen competition on stage,” Tucker told media representatives. Davis and Fortune thanked their major sponsors for assisting them, stating that the trip would not have been possible without their support. Davis, on his win, related that he was happy with defending his title but, was never over-confident. The Guyana Defence Force (GDF) bodybuilder and paratrooper also noted that while his competition seemed bigger in size, he never feared that he would have lost. Meanwhile, the 2014 edition of the Championships will be held in St Marteen. (Guyana Times)

avin Dharmindra Singh’s hat-trick was enough to spur Better Hope XI to lift the inaugural Ontario Softball Cricket League (OSCL) trophy on Saturday at the Ellesmere Cricket Club ground in Scarborough, in front of a vocal crowd. Singh bowled two overs to claim three wickets for nine runs, as Caribbean Sensation reached an inadequate 58-8 at the expiration of the ten overs while Better Hope XI, in reply, safely reached 59-4 with three deliveries to spare. He got admirable support from Sunil Ramkissoon, who also nabbed two wickets for 10 runs off his allotted two overs. Skipper and experienced Richard Duffield made a topscore for the losers with 14. When Better Hope XI batted, Richard Dias made 16, as Garvin Glasgow took two wickets to capture the Most Valuable Player award while Singh was inevitably named man-of-thematch. Meanwhile, in the consolation encounter, Rems thrashed GT Banas by 29 runs. Rems piled up a formidable

The victorious Better Hope XI team strikes a pose just after the game (Ravendra Madholall photo)

95-4 from the allocation of 10 overs while GT Banas were dismissed for 66 in the penultimate over. Former Guyana under-19 batsman Rovendra Mandolall hit a belligerent 74 for Rems. The right-hander struck seven sixes and three fours during his 31ball innings. Prem Singh chipped in with 12. Pradeep Singh was the outstanding bowler for Rems with three for 5 from his two overs while Avinash Singh supported with two for four from two overs as well. At the presentation ceremony, president of the League, Albert Ramcharran congratulated the winner and thanked the participat-

ing teams. He said that the first tournament in this version was a success and he was looking forward to make it bigger and better next year with more teams. “We at the League want to see the growth of the competition and it was indeed exciting, and with other teams willing to take part next year, we should have more entertainment,” the Guyanese Ramcharran related. He added, “I must say thanks to the sponsors and without them nothing is possible; they have been very loyal and supportive over the years, not only in the shortest format, but also the longer versions, like the 25 and 20-over competition; next year we would

have more 20-over, 15over and 10-over tournaments.” Sponsor of the Caribbean Sensation side Harri Sukhu, was on hand to witness the action and during the presentation ceremony, he declared that his team played good cricket but, continued to make errors in the championships games. Some of the sponsors were Norman Sue Bakery, TDMJ Accounting and Bookkeeping Services, Active Green and Ross, Hemant Misir CGA, CPCA Financial Advisor, Shiv Misir, MVA, ABR Broker, Twilight and Starlight Restaurants and photographer Bobby Ramlagan.

TT women win first CFU under-17 title


rinidad and Tobago captured the 2013 Caribbean Football Union (CFU) Under-17 title with a hard fought 1-0 victory over hosts Haiti at the Sylvio Cator Stadium on Sunday evening. Summer Arjoon netted the winner in the first half to guarantee the Marlon Charles-coached team the regional crown. However, both finalists advanced to the CONCACAF Finals, scheduled from October 30 to November 9 in Jamaica. The much anticipated final was played in front of 6,800 spectators who braved the inclement weather to witness history, as a champion was crowned for the first time in the tournament’s history. Haiti took the attack to Trinidad and Tobago from the opening whistle, much to the delight of the boisterous crowd, which came armed with musical instruments and dancers ready to burst with excitement at the first Haitian goal. Trinidad and Tobago, on the other hand started cautiously, paying special attention to Haitian playmaker Isnada Lebrun and tournament-leading goal scorer Batcheba Louis, as they completely marked them out in the first half. The only goal came in the 40th minute on a play started by midfielder Chevonne John who main-

Members of the Trinidad and Tobago Under-17 Women's team celebrate after beating Haiti 1-0 in the final of the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) in Port-au-Prince. (TT Newsday photo)

tained her balance after bypassing her marker, and relayed the ball to Zoe Swift who then found an open Summer Arjoon in the penalty area and she hit past goalkeeper Jonie Gabriel. Haiti stepped up their attack in the second half and Trinidadian goalie Nicolette Craig did well to push a well placed shot from Sherly Jeudy over the uprights in the 55th minute. Trinidad and Tobago soaked reverted to a full defensive style of play by the 60th minute with one striker and their midfield dropping back to assist the defence in keeping out Louis and her fellow midfielders who liked to operate on the flanks. A risky tactic, which paid off for

Charles, who admitted, “the game came down to tactics and being a goal ahead I wanted to preserve that lead. I had a lot of confidence in my defenders and the way they were cutting out the spaces in the midfield. I cannot say if my plan would have changed had Haiti scored, but they didn’t so it’s safe to say that it worked.” Haiti’s coach James Morisset applauded Trinidad and Tobago for a game well played and said his team will now prepared for the CONCACAF Qualifiers. “We learnt a lot from this game and it has prepared us well for the CONCACAF Under 17 qualifiers and who knows maybe we will meet Trinidad again for a rematch,” he said. (TT Newsday)


sport | week ending October 3, 2013

Guyanese star in Toronto cricket finals By Ravendra Madholall

Several Guyanese cricketers produced satisfactory performances over the weekend in the Toronto and District Cricket Association second-division 50-over final played at the King City ground. While in the Scarborough limitedover League, former Guyana first-class fast bowler Trevon Garraway was also outstanding, grabbing four wickets for six runs from 4.4 accurate overs to help Hawaiian Arctic Cricket Club (HACC) win by a comprehensive tenwicket margin over TP Tigers. At King City, Civics Cricket Club made a mess of Gasnavy Cricket Club emerging with a handsome 88-run win. Their effort was led by an impressive, unbeaten 61 from Guyana National Industrial Corporation player Elton Baker. He received support

HACC team in a celebratory mood after winning the game on Sunday (Ravendra Madholall photo)

from Freddy Pestano with 35 while former Guyana wicketkeeper Kenneth Wong chipped in with 22 towards the end. Tyrone Smith was the most successful bowler for Gasnavy with two victims conceding 34 runs from his eight-over spell. When they batted,

they never suggested permanence as wickets fell in quick succession. Only Javed Bacchus showed any sort of fight with 23 as leg-spinner, and former Guyana under-19 reserved player Travis Blyden snatched three wickets for 21 runs from seven overs while Baker returned with the

ball to claim two scalps with his off-spin. Meanwhile on Saturday, Civics Cricket Club humbled nemesis Brampton Masters in the Premier Division and advanced to the Elite stage. Blyden stroke a boundary-studded undefeated 61 to lead his team. And in Scarborough,

Hawaiian Arctic Cricket Club humiliated TP Tigers at Ashtonbee number pitch. Garraway was dominant as the oppositions were tumbled out for a meagre 25 off 20.4 overs. M e a n w h i l e , Garraway in an exclusive interview with this publication, just after the completion of the memorable game, expressed great delight with his massive effort and was also happy to see his team pull off such a performance. He said he wanted to represent his country again at the highest level and is still ambitious too of playing for West Indies. “I [am] extremely delighted with my performance today (Sunday); we went out there and play to the best of our ability and I think we deserved the championship trophy; yes, I have the desire to represent West Indies but, I have to first get into the na-

tional team, and put in good performances so the selectors can see I am doing well,” Garraway, who featured in 12 West Indies Cricket Board regional four-day matches for his country, related. The 29-year-old Garraway, who has been playing professionally in Canada for the past five years, mentioned that he has enjoyed his stint so far. He promised to make the trip to North America on an annual basis, once given the opportunity. “I think as a cricketer, you just want to play competitively as much as you can; and playing among a number of former cricketers from Guyana and by extension the West Indies, gives me great pleasure and encouragement to play again for my country at the highest level, but I have got to take wickets consistently,” the former Essequibo senior inter-county skipper reckoned.

Persaud destroys rivals to cop Laparkan cycling title in Guyana By Rajiv Bisnauth


uyana’s national cyclist Robin Persaud on Saturday underlined his dominance over his rivals with another scintillating performance in the feature 35-lap race of the ninth annual Laparkan 11-race cycling programme at the inner circuit of the National Park in Georgetown. Persaud destroyed his rivals to win the race in one hour, 18 minutes, 16 seconds (01:18:16), beating his last year time of one hour, 20 minutes, 55 seconds (01:20:55). He crossed the line ahead of Alanzo Greaves; Godfrey Pollydore was third, followed by Junior Niles,

Paul Choo Wee Nam and Raymond Newtown, to close out the top six. Pollydore claimed three of the eight sprint prime prizes with Newtown picking up two and one each for Greaves, Choo Wee Nam and Persaud. The race started with 28 riders that saw Newton and Niles breaking away from the pack by the end of the eight laps. Greaves, Pollydore, Persaud and Choo Wee Nam decided to ease out of the pack and reconnected with Newton and Niles in the 10th lap. However, Albert Philander, Jamal Eastman, Raynauth Jeffrey and Paul DeNobrega were the

third set that came out the pack blazing and were able to establish themselves, as the race progressed in the sweltering heat. With eight laps to go, Greaves launched an attack to put some distance between him and the rest of the field. However, Persaud dug deeper into the fuel tank to pull away from his colleagues and in the process established a sizable lead to finish the contest on top. Junior Niles took the winner’s trophy in the Veterans’ Under-50 race after he out pedaled Kennard Lovell and Thuran Harris, who placed third; Linden Blackman finished first

in the Veterans’ Over50 category in front of Kenneth Meiji and Courtney Hackett, who placed second and third respectively. The Veterans’ Over60 category was won by Maurice Fagundes. In the BMX Boys Open, Jamal John won ahead of Adrian Sharma (second) and Daniel Fraser (third). Stephan Wilkinson won the BMX Boys 9-12 years category from Ammo Gomes and Tariq Khan in second and third respectively, while Romello Crawford rode to victory in the Boys 12-14 race, which saw Alfie Sonoram finishing second, ahead of Jamal John.

Robin Persaud collets the winning trophy from Sahadeo Ramkirath, Chief Financial Officer and Corporate Secretary of Laparkan Trading

Sherwin Sampson took the BMX 6-9 race from Ryan Nunes and Alexander Leung. Richard Charles crossed the finish

line in the Mountain Bike category ahead of Kester Croal while Jamal Eastman won the Juveniles’ category. (Guyana Times)

Jamaican crew leads in Clipper Round the World Yacht Race


he crew of Jamaica Get All Right is in a jubilant mood as they have now taken the lead in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race. First to cross the equator, the Jamaica Get All Right leads the Clipper Race into the Southern Hemisphere. The team celebration, though small-scale, included the famous Usain Bolt-To the World pose, a release from the Jamaica Tourist Board said Monday. PSP Logistics and Qingdao complete the

Crew members of the Jamaica Get All Right Yacht celebrate as they take the lead in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race

trio that has separated themselves from the

pack, and the race is on in earnest to see which

will be the first to dock at Marina du Chateau in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Assuming the lead in the world's longest ocean race has not been an easy feat for the Jamaica Get All Right crew. They have been up against fierce competition from the other vessels, as well as battling the rigours of the high seas. This has been particularly trying for the crew of amateur sailors, and it has taken the tactical mastery of skipper Pete Stirling to gain their current position.

They are in high spirits and are pressing ahead to maintain their lead. "As a crew, we have been working on various strategies and sail plans to try and make sure we hold them (the other teams) off," said Stirling. "We celebrate this milestone with the crew which sets the stage for them to be a medal contender," said John Lynch, Jamaica's director of tourism. "This world-famous yacht race provides a unique opportunity to market

Destination Jamaica across the globe," he added. This is the third year Jamaica has been represented in the Clipper Round the World Yacht Race. The yacht will showcase Jamaica during the 40,000-mile, 11-month ocean race, globally promoting the destination as it visits 15 ports on six continents. The race got under way on Sunday, September 1 from London. The Errol Flynn Marina in Port Antonio will serve as a port of call in May 2014. (Jamaica Gleaner)



week ending October 3, 2013 |

Blatter hopes Trinidad Amateur boxers did Guyana proud in Peru striker recovers P from heart attack


Akeem Adams

udapest, Hungary - FIFA President Sepp Blatter has joined the growing list of well wishers hoping Trinidad and Tobago national defender Akeem Adams, makes a full recovery after suffering a massive heart attack in Hungary last Wednesday night. FIFA Social Media manager Alex Stone has indicated that Blatter was aware of Adam’s situation and has sent his regards to his family and the Trinidad and Tobago football fraternity. “Sending my best wishes for a full recovery to # akeemadams, a 22 year old player of Ferencváros & @ TTFootballAssociation” the post stated in Blatter’s official Twitter account. Adams, 22, continues to be warded at the ICU of the Varosmajori Heart Clinic in Hungary after undergoing three surgeries, and is now sur-

viving on a mechanical heart due to the severe damage to his heart. Reports suggest that Adams will require a heart transplant. Meantime, Trinidad and Tobago Football Association (TTFA) is reporting some positive signs from the footballer. A media release from the TTFA said there was some movement from Adams, who plays for Ferencvaros club. “There was one significant occurrence, as the 22-year-old player was said to have nodded in acknowledgement of his mother’s presence and held her hand for a brief moment on Sunday morning,” the release read. “He nodded and held on to her hand when she asked ‘Akeem do you know I am here’, and we continue to pray for his recovery,” Adams’s local handler, Dion Sosa, also told TTFA Media.

‘Bolt stops the world whenever ... from back page

respect of his peers and, most of all, to compete against Bolt - the man he hailed as the greatest sprinter of all time. That, in itself, is a mild surprise given the lessthan-chummy relationship they both share and the public verbal squabbles of the past. "On paper, he (Bolt) is the best of all time. Multiple world records; anything that he has put his mind to, he has accomplished, and in a shorter span than a lot of athletes have done in the past," Gatlin acknowledged. "At one point in time, I had the world record (later revoked after drug ban), Maurice Greene had the world record, Asafa Powell and Carl

Lewis; it's a hard thing to do, so to be able to do it more than once is a feat in itself, and that's just in the 100m we are talking about. "You add the 200m and relay and it blows your mind," Gatlin added. "I really respect and appreciate him and he made me want to contribute more to the sport." He further stated, "Usain Bolt has changed the game. He made track and field more exciting. He made people sit and not go to the bathroom. It's almost like a Mike Tyson fight; you go to the bathroom you may miss the fireworks. He stops the world whenever he runs.” (Excerpted from Jamaican Gleaner)

resident of the Guyana Boxing Association, Steve Ninvalle, said he is heartened by the achievements of the four boxers who represented Guyana at the inaugural South American Youth Games in Lima, Peru. Speaking at a press briefing on Tuesday, Ninvalle stated that the boxers were excellent ambassadors, adding that amateur boxing is on good ground. Junior flyweight Tefon Greene, flyweight Michael April, bantamweight Joel Williamson and welterweight Travis Fraser were the boxers. Fraser, who lost to Ruis Sanche of Ecuador in the 69kg final, heads the list with a silver medal. Fraser’s teammates, Greene (49kg), April (52kg) and Williamson (56kg), copped bronze medals to ensure a 100% medal record for the four boxers. Meanwhile, Ninvalle said with a collective effort by all, boxing can move to the next level. He said there are many good boxers, but the government and the busi-

Bantamweight Joel Williamson (second from left), Welterweight Travis Fraser (third from left) and flyweight Michael April with their coach Jeff Roberts. (Guyana Times photo)

ness community need to come forward and assist the sport more. Ninvalle noted that from the GBA’ stand point, amateur boxers will be encamped every weekend, with the view to further develop their trade. The experienced Wincel Thomas, who headed the five-member contingent, said in his

opinion the team did exceedingly well, but could have done better. He singled out Green’s performance as outstanding while the others definitely gave a good account of themselves. Guyana was represented by a multi-discipline sport team of 22 members that competed in athletics, badminton,

boxing, cycling, swimming, table-tennis and weightlifting. Guyana gained nine medals overall. Argentina, Aruba, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Ecuador, Panama, Paraguay, Suriname, Uruguay, Venezuela and hosts, Peru, participated at the Games. (Guyana Times)

Strong 10-member Jamaican netball squad named for World Series


amaica has named a strong 10-member squad to participate in this year's Fast5 World Series that will be held in Auckland, New Zealand, November 8-10. The squad includes top goal shooters Romelda Aiken and Jhaniele Fowler and will be joined by Paula Thompson, who last represented Jamaica at the World Netball Championships in Singapore in 2011. Aiken, along with defender Malysha Kelly, are the co-captains of the Sunshine Girls team, which also includes five members that won the bronze medal at the recent World Youth Netball Championships (WYNC) in Glasgow, Scotland. "I think we will do fairly well. I think we have a good set of girls going over there that will do us very proud," said Aiken, who plays for the Queensland Firebirds in the ANZ Championships in Australia and New Zealand. "We know the task ahead, and

The squad includes top goal shooter Romelda Aiken (Jamaica Observer photo)

we know what we are going to come up against, and so we just need to put it together as a team." Fowler, regarded as the best goal shooter in the world, lit up the ANZ Netball Championships in New Zealand this year and was voted the Most Valuable Player (MVP). The Jamaican, who plays for the New Zealand-based Southern Steel, finished with 666 goals from 709 attempts to break the league's record for most goals in a season. She holds the record for most goals in a game, after netting 65 twice during the season. The Oberon Pitterson-Nattiecoached team also includes Vanessa Walker, along with national Under-21 captain Vangelee Williams. Williams will be joined in the squad by her national Under-21 teammates Shamera Sterling, Shanice Beckford, Khadijah Williams and Thristina Hardwood. (Jamaica Observer)

Narine to join Cape Cobras S unil Narine, the West Indies offspinner who is currently ranked the world’s No 1 Twenty20 bowler, has signed with the South African franchise, Cape Cobras, for the domestic Twenty20 competition. Narine will be the frontline spinner in an

outfit that will be packed with international stars including Dale Steyn, Jacques Kallis, Graeme Smith, Hashim Amla, Robin Peterson, Vernon Philander and Rory Kleinveldt, and is no doubt part of their plans to qualify for next year’s CLT20. The Cobras last

played in the lucrative event two years ago in 2011 and finished at the bottom of the points table last season. They aim to turn that around this season, by making use of as many high-profile players as possible. “Most of our internationals should be available for the twenty-

over competition and we asked ourselves the question, who would best complement them?” Paul Adams, Cobras coach said. “Sunil’s strength is that you can bring him on to bowl at pressure moments in the innings and he still strikes and keeps the run rate down.”

Sports is no longer our game, it’s our business


‘Bolt stops the world whenever he runs’ - Gatlin speaks of how Jamaican sprint legend inspires him


ustin Gatlin was an emotional man at the London Olympics in 2012, not because he had finished behind Usain Bolt and Yohan Blake in the 100 metres final, but because he had lined up beside them in the first place. "I got emotional at the Olympics because my goal was to line up next to this guy and I was lined up next to him and Yohan Blake-between them, actually. I felt like, 'You may not like me, but you are going to respect that I am here; we are going to battle today.'" When Jamaica sprinting superstar Usain Bolt announced himself to the world in 2008 at the Beijing Olympic Games, winning three gold medals in world record fashion, American Justin Gatlin

was watching from afar in astonishment-at home, serving the second of a four-year drug ban. Gatlin, a former 100m world record holder himself, was still weighing his options after he was slapped with suspension in 2006 when higher-than-normal levels of testosterone showed up in his system. The then 28-year-old, disgraced and banished from the sport he loved, had started flirting with the idea of a career switch to American football, modelling or even acting. But what Bolt did in Beijing and a year later at the World Championships in Berlin, where he bettered his own world records in the 100m, 200m and as a mem-

ber of Jamaica's 4x100m relay team, not only convinced Gatlin that the big Jamaican was the greatest sprinter ever, but also served as the motivation he needed to get back into the sport. "I watched (Usain) Bolt become Bolt from afar," Gatlin told Jamaican media in a recent sit down interview. "What he did, it inspired me. I was like, 'I will see you soon, Bolt. I will make sure I prepare and work as hard as I can, work overtime to make sure I can line up next to him."

Reclaim Respect

From 2008 to the point of his return to the track at a Jamaica's Usain Bolt (centre), Nesta Carter (right) and the United States' low-key meet in Estonia on Justin Gatlin display their medals during the presentation ceremony August 3, 2010, Gatlin's main for the men's 100 metres final at the 2013 IAAF World Championships objective was to reclaim the in August. Bolt won gold, Gatlin, silver, and Carter, bronze. (Jamaica Gleaner file photo)

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