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Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival parade lights up Toronto Page 21




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WEEK ENDING August 8, 2013

Ramotar, Jagdeo poll highest at PPP congress in Guyana See story on page 11

Developers secure US$171 million loan for Portmore hospital in Jamaica Page 9

The coaching staff and players of the Guyana Amazon Warriors witness their captain Ramnesh Sarwan making a financial contribution to the administrator of the Children’s Convalescent Home, Erwin Enmore on Tuesday in Georgetown, Guyana

Trinidad senate VP resigns, quits ruling party Page 2


NEWS | week ending August 8, 2013

Trinidad senate VP resigns, quits ruling party


he Vice President of the Trinidad Senate, Lyndira Oudit, on Tuesday confirmed she had resigned her post as well as quitting the United National Congress (UNC), the biggest partner in the fourparty coalition People’s Partnership government of Prime Minister Kamla Persad Bissessar. Oudit, speaking on a local radio programme in Trinidad, said her resignation stemmed from a number of disappointments and held out the possibility of joining the Independent Liberal Party (ILP) whose interim leader, Austin “Jack” Warner was victorious in a by-election earlier this month. Her resignation is the second high profile one from the UNC, led by Prime Minister Persad

Bissessar, and follows former justice minister Herbert Volney, who announced his resignation last Monday. The resignation comes amidst media reports that Prime Minister will announce a Cabinet re-shuffle on Thursday and that National Security Minister Emmanuel George and Communication Minister Jamal Mohammed will lose their Cabinet portfolios. It will be the third realignment of the PersadBissessar administration in its three years of government and comes on the heels of the crushing defeat for the coalition in the July 29 by-election for the Chaguanas West constituency, considered a heartland of the UNC. Oudit said in 2010 when the coalition

Vice President of the Trinidad Senate, Lyndira Oudit (TT Guardian file photo)

People’s Partnership came to power she had taken a position “that I wanted to be a part of something that was for change and for the bet-

terment of the country”. But she said over the last three years “whatever vision and hope and expectation I shared, somewhere along the

line there has been a diversion in which the philosophy is unfolding and at this time, I choose to take a different direction”. She said she had been thinking about the matter ‘for some time” and told radio listeners “there were things I believe ought not to have taken place...and I feel that while you say you are listening to the people, I believe sometimes you have to understand what you are hearing. “I think somewhere along the line we mix up the messages,” she said, noting that while she has not hidden her support for Warner, “my options are wide open. “Trinidad and Tobago is going through a political dynamite right now and there are options within and as soon as I

know for will be the first to know,” she told listeners. Asked whether or not she was disappointed in how Prime Minister Persad Bissessar dealt with allegations of corruption within her administration, Oudit said “Yes I am a little bit disappointed.” Oudit said the results of the Tobago House of Assembly (THA) elections in January should have served as a wakeup call for the government. The main opposition People’s National Movement (PNM) won all 12 seats in the election. In the 2010 general election, the coalition won 29 out of the 41 seats, but that majority has declined by two with Warner and Volney’s decisions. (CMC)

company secretary Amaila Falls Hydro Inc Hughes tenders resignation as chairman of AFC –ofremains


n the face of the shocking disclosure that he is the company secretary of Amaila Falls Hydro Inc, Attorney Nigel Hughes on Tuesday resigned as chairman of the Alliance

For Change (AFC), while maintaining that he has always acted professionally in his handling of the matter. Hughes was reportedly appointed as the secretary of the Amaila

Falls Hydro Inc, the special purpose vehicle/company created for the development, construction and operation of the US$858 million hydroelectric power plant, according to media reports. At the centre of the issue is also Hughes’ wife, Cathy Hughes, an executive member of the AFC and a sitting Member of Parliament. Cathy Hughes is said to be the public relations officer for Sithe Global, locally. The Amaila Falls Hydro-electric Inc, is the company that the Guyana Power and Light (GPL) will be making its payments to. The company is 60 per cent owned by Sithe Global and 40 per cent owned by the Guyana government. That company will be

Nigel Hughes

Cathy Hughes

required to make payments to Sithe Global and the various lenders to the project.

both in prominence and importance. He said the incorporation of the Amaila Falls Hydro Inc and his appointment as secretary have been a matter of public record since the incorporation of the company in April 2009. According to Hughes, when the issue of Amaila Falls project became a

Public record

In a release announcing his resignation, Nigel Hughes said the headline in Tuesday’s Kaieteur News “Nigel Hughes is company secretary of Amaila Hydro Inc” was difficult to miss,

matter of public interest, he immediately disclosed his interest to the leadership of the AFC. He added that, “I have at all times acted professionally and disclosed to the party my relationship with the client as the client has been aware of my position in the party. As a result of this clear attempt to tarnish the name of the AFC and its publicly stated positions on the Amaila Falls project, I have today offered my resignation as chairman to the Alliance For Change.” At age 49, Hughes was elected chairman of the AFC last year August. He is a partner in the law firm Hughes Fields and Stoby and chairman of HFS Corporate Services Inc.


week ending August 8, 2013 |


Views | week ending August 8, 2013

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Democracy in Zimbabwe


he results of, and reactions to, the July 31 election in Zimbabwe raise once again the issue of the clash between procedural and substantive democracy in Africa. This has grave implications for the U.S. project to “export” democracy to the continent. The Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (ZANUPF), the party of incumbent President Robert Mugabe, was declared to be the winner by a wide margin–67 per cent to 31 per cent–over his rival Morgan Tsvangirai’s Movement for Democratic Change (MDC). Tsvangirai immediately denounced the election as “void” on account of claimed “massive irregularities”. Observer missions from the African Union (AU) and the Southern African Development Community (SADC), however, stated that the irregularities of Zimbabwe’s elections did not jeopardise the results. South Africa’s President Jacob Zuma congratulated President Mugabe for his win and urged Tsvangirai, Mugabe’s rival, to accept the result as “election observers reported it to be an expression of the will of the people”. Western observers were not invited to witness the polls and the results were vehemently rejected by Britain, the former colonial power, as well as the U.S. They demanded another poll. The diametrically opposed positions taken by Western versus African leaders reflect their different perspectives on the institutionalisation of democracy in Africa. Britain had been the ruler of what was then Rhodesia, where white settlers had appropriated 90 per cent of the prime farmlands, while native farmers eked out a desperate subsistence existence. ZANU-PF, under Mugabe, evolved as a disciplined, cadre-based, guerrilla party locked in a liberation struggle against the heavily armed white colonial state. Britain and the U.S. waged a long rearguard effort to protect the white settlers but in the end, ZANUPF prevailed. The party won the elections of 1980 and Mugabe has been ruling ever since, even though he has been accused of a wide range of atrocities against his opponents. The specific issue that brought to the fore the difference that still persists between the reactions of Western and African leaders was Mugabe’s position on land ownership. Mugabe has been implacable in his position that white ownership of Zimbabwean farmlands had to be shared with Africans. The claim that the latter did not have the expertise to run the farms as efficiently, as the former, did not cut any ice with him. His position was that justice had to take priority to economic efficiency and that Africans could be taught to run the farms as productively as the Whites. While the latter group has all but disappeared from Zimbabwe, agricultural production has not recovered. However, the mass of Zimbabweans are positive about the land policies of ZANUPF. Mugabe’s position can be contrasted to that of Nelson Mandela over in neighbouring South Africa, where whites have been allowed to retain their agricultural, commercial and industrial dominance over the overwhelming majority of Africans. This situation has raised serious conflicts within the governing African National Congress (ANC) and it is almost certain to precipitate rifts in the near future as the masses of Africans refuse to accept their poverty. President Zuma’s prompt endorsement of Mugabe’s victory could be a move to signal restive members of his own party that he is sympathetic to Mugabe’s position on the indigenisation of Africa’s assets. The MDC, on the other hand, came together as a coalition of largely urban trade unionists and civil society groups and articulate a view of democracy that focuses more on the procedural rather than the substantive aspects stressed by Mugabe. This, perhaps, is the greatest difference between the two parties. In the previous elections of 2008, Tsvangirai polled more votes than Mugabe but pulled out of a run-off when 200 supporters were killed by security forces. SADC intervened to form a fractious unity government with Mugabe as president and Tsvangirai as prime minister. A new variable is China. Its non judgemental willingness to invest in Zimbabwe’s natural resources will help to undercut the West’s definition of “democracy”.

Part of the cricket excitement in Guyana during the recent staging of the LimacolCPL matches at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence, East Bank Demerara. (CPL photo)

President Ramotar urges early implementation of new teaching strategies in Caribbean


he 36th biennial Caribbean Union of Teachers’ (CUT) conference officially opened in Guyana on Monday evening with a grand ceremony at the National Cultural Centre in front of a packed audience, including representatives from across all member countries attached to the CUT. In giving the keynote address, President Donald Ramotar applauded the work of teachers across the Caribbean, contending that significant strides have been made over the years towards improving the quality of education. The head of state said teachers cannot be compensated enough for their hard work and dedication in moulding the minds of their country. He posited that while the Caribbean shares common realities in teaching and teachers, the CUT should encourage discussions relating to current challenges, aimed at finding possible solutions to them.

Significant strides

“We have made significant strides in a relatively short time by utilising such unified approach...we have moved from where we were a few years ago when the examination of the models, policies and practices in relation to teacher education and training in the region exposed the fact that for such a relatively small region, we had a multiplicity of approaches in the way we prepared our teachers,” he said. Ramotar noted that pro-

grammes vary widely in relation to entry requirements, content, duration, expectations of lecturers and understanding of who is the ideal teacher. The president, however, believes the Caribbean has developed a more harmonised approach to teacher education and training, which guides each country in establishing common standards, in promulgating policies in relation to teacher education and training.

Regional teaching standards

Further, Ramotar urged that a regional standard of practice for the teaching profession be established, outlining the academic and professional benchmarks for teachers. In this regard, he said the work of the Caribbean Community (Caricom) in creating the condition for these objectives must be implemented and must commence quickly. This is important, he said, given the fact that it will help to move forward the professionalisation of teaching. The president told delegates that Guyana has joined other nations in hosting consultations aimed at establishing teaching councils. This has been an inclusive process which involved a wide cross-section of education stakeholders, promoting professional development of teachers. Ramotar said policy formation, regulation and maintenance of competence and standards, evaluation and rationalisation and streamlin-

ing are all necessary to move the profession to another level, as it brings about cohesion between training and practice.

Key role to play

Ramotar said too that the teachers’ unions across the region have a key role to play, in finding a clear vision for the future of the profession over the coming years and beyond. He suggested that the solid goals be set, which includes the input of every stakeholder, so as to create a road map for effective education delivery. That ultimate objective, he said is improvement in the quality and professionalism of teaching, noting that this is an urgent necessity. “Without highly professionalised core of teachers, our children will fail to meet their life potential and this will have disastrous effects on the development of our region. As such, the challenge is for all stakeholders to begin to orchestrate the change that we need, establishing the necessary mechanisms, devising the right plans, fostering and enabling an environment for these plans to flourish and building strong alliances with important stakeholders.” During the five-day conference, focus will be paid on violence against teachers, increased wages, marking of school based assessments, among other issues. The conference is being observed under the theme “Improving the profession al status of teachers in the Caribbean”.



week ending August 8, 2013 |

Jamaica celebrates 51st independence anniversary

Jade Malee Webb is a picture of beauty as she holds small Jamaican flags during Tuesday night's National Independence Grand Gala at the National Stadium in Kingston. The gala, which attracted thousands of people, was the main event to celebrate Jamaica 51. (Naphtali Junior/Jamaica Observer photo)


amaica celebrated its 51st anniversary of political independence from Britain on Tuesday with the country’s lauding the achievements in sports, education, and the creative arts while encouraging nationals not to give up in the midst of hardships. Governor-General Sir Patrick Allen said Jamaicans have the responsibility to help restore the country's image

and defend what is good. He said while the country is not where is should be, this can be fixed. He said every Jamaican, whether at home or abroad, “has the responsibility to help restore Jamaica’s mage as a peaceful and productive country.” In her message, Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller said the country’s rich heritage should be used as a catalyst to overcome the cur-

rent hardships and defy the odds. Opposition leader Andrew Holness acknowledged the country's achievements but also recommended critical changes to the economic model in order to reap long-term benefits. He encouraged Jamaicans not to totally rely on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) agreement, as it is not the cure-all for the country's economic problems.

6 | week ending August 8, 2013

7 Guyana Amazon Warriors share cheer with Children’s Convalescent Home News

week ending August 8, 2013 |

Guyana Amazon Warriors Captain Ramnaresh Sarwan tries to get the attention of this child during his team’s visit to the convalescent home on Tuesday


he Guyana Amazon Warriors on Tuesday visited the Guyana Red Cross Children’s Convalescent Home to interact with and share goodies to the children there. The warriors during their visit also handed over a cheque, which was presented by Captain Ramnaresh Sarwan to Administrator Erwin

Enmore. The financial donation comprised fines imposed on the players in keeping with rules laid down by the management team along with other donations from the players. Sarwan, speaking on behalf of his team, said it was the team’s hope that the donation would assist in a meaningful way.

“We do hope that it would make a meaningful and worthy contribution to their lives in whatever way the administrators sees it fit for,” he stated. Administrator Enmore, in his remarks, wished the Guyana Amazon Warriors all the best in their remaining matches of this year’s Limacol Caribbean

Guyana gov’t ministers condemn Mayor’s attempt to oust acting town clerk


Minister Ganga Persaud

City Mayor Hamilton Green

he Georgetown Mayor and City Council was the home of another protest on Tuesday, as vendors once again backed City Mayor Hamilton Green who tried to oust Acting Town Clerk Carol Sooba from office. According to the acting town clerk, Mayor Green used his vehicle to block the entrance of City Hall, thereby preventing her from entering the compound. The vehicle was subsequently replaced with a human barricade. Additionally, men who were described as “thugs” prevented employees from gaining access to Sooba’s office. Guyana’s Local Government Minister Ganga Persaud said the action of the city mayor and his council leaves him with no other choice but to call in the Guyana Police Force. At a press conference late Tuesday afternoon, he expressed disgust at this situation,

noting that it was illegal and distasteful. “It is unfortunate that the mayor of the City of Georgetown would have reduced himself from being mayor to becoming an obstacle. It is so unfortunate when you make yourself into a human barricade,” Persaud lamented. Junior Local Government Minister Norman Whittaker also lashed out at Green and his supporters, describing their actions as unofficial and unorthodox. According to him, Green and his security guards not only prevented the acting town clerk and her staff from entering the building but threatened them as well. He said as a result of the threatening behaviour, the home affairs minister and the acting police commissioner were notified and will soon advise the Local Government Ministry on the next step. As the ministry

awaits the Guyana Police Force recommendations, Sooba is operating out of a private entity. According to Whittaker, when Sooba was appointed as acting town clerk in 2012, Green had welcomed her with open arms; however, after she launched her campaign to root out corruption, difficulties arose. No-confidence motions were moved followed by a series of protest actions, as the mayor and team signalled their non-support for the acting town clerk. Late Monday night, more than a dozen vendors flocked Sooba’s Duncan Street residence as they advocated for the local government ministry to terminate Sooba’s service. A public meeting held by Green at City Hall earlier that day had sparked the protest. The mayor reportedly informed the vendors that Sooba was making another attempt to clear Regent Street, Water Street and other commercial areas of all street vendors. The acting town clerk when contacted said while she will not condone any form of illegal vending in the city, she has not made any recent attempt to remove vendors. According to her, this recent protest is yet another attack by Mayor Green.

Premier League (LCPL). The Amazon Warriors came out on top in their matches against Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel and Jamaica Tallawahs, but lost their third match–a well-played home game to the St Lucia Zouks Sunday. The Amazon Warriors will take on the Red Steel at the Queen’s Park Oval this Friday, then they will come up against the Barbados Tridents in the opening encounter of Sunday’s double-header, which will see the Red Steel and Antigua Hawksbills meet in the feature game. When asked about the team’s defeat at the last home game, the captain admitted that the team did not bat as well as they had planned to. “We did not bat as well.

Christopher Barnwell hands over a bag of goodies and other items to one of the children at the home

I think we could have scored 15 more runs… that is behind us now and we just have to focus on the remaining matches we have to play,” he said. Sarwan said it was

very important that the team wins the four remaining games, as every game played is important and it is necessary to maintain a winning streak.

20-year-old represents Guyana at World Scout Moot in Canada


20-year-old explorer scout will be representing Guyana at the 14th World Scout Moot set to take place at Awacamenj Mino Camp, Québec, Canada, from August 8 to 18. According to a release by the Scout Association of Guyana (SAG), Patrick Fung is an assistant explorer scout and member of the Saint Stanislaus group. He has been a member of the SAG for the past nine years. Fung said he is excited to be representing SAG at this event and intends to use the experience he has garnered

Explorer Patrick Fung

at other international scouting meets he has attended to make a positive contribution to the moot. “I have attended two

world scout jamborees in England and Sweden and am happy to be representing Guyana at this upcoming event. I’m also a certified paramedic and I am furthering my studies to become a cardiac sonographer,” he stated. The World Scout Moot is a gathering of older members of national scout associations. World moots give the young adults in the movement a chance to get together and strengthen their international awareness as citizens of the world. Participants are usually between 18 and 25 years.


News | week ending August 8, 2013

Governor General calls for Guyana’s mining crackdown on Jamaican commission celebrates businesses that purchase 34 years of existence from farm thieves



overnor General Sir Patrick Allen has called for a crackdown on business entities and individuals in Jamaica who continue to support farm thieves by purchasing their illgotten gains. Noting that the thieves would be out of business if they did not have collaborators, he called on the authorities to act decisively against anyone found guilty of buying stolen livestock or farm produce. The Governor General was guest speaker at the Denbigh Agriculture, Industrial and Food Show on Monday. He said the message of zero tolerance would be understood when businesses or individuals who are colluding with praedial thieves are also jailed. The governor general went on to appeal to all businesses and other large-scale purchasers of agricultural producers in Jamaica to support the besieged farmers by refusing to purchase products for which the vendors have no proof of ownership. He also called for stakeholders in the agricultural sector to utilise modern technology in order to make farming more attractive to the

Governor General Sir Patrick Allen (Jamaica Gleaner photo)

country’s young people. "It is important that all stakeholders in the sector unite in making agriculture attractive, appealing and worthwhile to our young people," said Allen. According to Allen this was critical as the survival of the sector was in the hands of the youth. "We cannot do the same thing year after year with the same technology and expect bigger and larger results. Now is the time when we must ...extend the borders of our imagination and implementation," Allen encouraged. Meanwhile, a number of Jamaica's long-serving farmers supported the GG’s call adding that larceny was one of the fac-

tors pushing young people away from the sector. Dr Carl Wellington, winner of this year’s Champion Bull competition and Richard Waites, farmer of over 50 years and representative of Jamaica Broilers, agreed. "There are a lot of things affecting the sector but we believe that with stronger partnership it can be addressed," said Wellington. The Denbigh Show is the oldest, largest and most dynamic Agricultural Industrial and Food Show in the English Speaking Caribbean which has become a benchmark for showcasing agriculture. (Excerpt from Jamaica Observer)

he Guyana G e o l o g y and Mines Commission (GGMC) celebrated its 34th anniversary last Wednesday with, among other activities, a formal lunch and an award ceremony to show gratitude to the long-term employees, for their dedicated service to the agency. Acting GGMC Commissioner Rickford Vieira highlighted that among the persons identified to receive awards is one employee who has been with the agency for 30 years, and about five who have been serving for 25 years. There are a few others who have been on board with the commission for five to 15 years. He also noted that bursary awards were to be given to the employees’ children who recently sat the National Grade Six Assessment (NGSA) examination and obtained good grades. Natural Resources and Environment

GGMC started very humbly and with the growth of the mining sector, it has been able to develop its capabilities

Minister Robert Persaud said, during a recent interview, that “an anniversary is certainly an occasion that one should give true significance, because it provides an opportunity to reflect, to contemplate on current issues and also to plan ahead”, the Government Information Agency (GINA) reported.

Increasingly important

The minister noted that the GGMC’s role is increasingly important in the country’s national development and thrust, to mod-

Caricom courts increased funding from international development partners

TT gov’t approved Clico successor company nine months ago


he ministry of finance said Saturday that the Trinidad and Tobago government approved the establishment of Atrius, the successor company to Clico, more than nine months ago and the company has had a board of directors since May. The ministry was responding to a report in another newspaper, which claimed the story was exclusive, that Cabinet had approved the transfer of Clico’s good business to a new state company called Atrius. The ministry said the intention behind the establishment of Atrius, which was set up on December 5, 2012, was so that selected assets and liabilities of Clico could be transferred to the new company. The use of Atrius to house Clico’s traditional insurance portfolio of life insurance and annuities

“remains under consideration and no new decisions regarding this matter have been made” recently, according to the ministry. While the use of Atrius for Clico’s traditional insurance portfolio “remains under consideration,” Clico’s parent company, CL Financial, is proposing that the portfolio “be divested for commercial value.” The government spent TT$16.4 billion to buy out the short term investment products of Clico and its sister company, British American, as well as on recapitalising Clico. A July 8 Ernst & Young analysis presented for Cabinet’s deliberations indicated that Clico has assets estimated at TT$24.33 billion and liabilities of TT$10.41 billion. The analysis excludes the TT$4.9 billion in preference shares that

the government pumped into Clico to recapitalise the insurer. The government made a claim of TT$23.3 billion against CL Financial and its subsidiaries as the total amount of money spent on bailing out the group. CL Financial has acknowledged and accepted TT$18.33 billion of the government’s total claim. A proposal before the TT government recommends that CL Financial sell assets with an estimated value of TT$31.4 billion and use the proceeds to settle the group’s third party liabilities and the government’s debt, in that order. Under the proposal, CL Financial gets to retain assets with a value of TT$1.6 billion, which will be used to pay back any shortfall owed to the government, after all of the group’s assets have been disposed. (TT Guardian)

ernise and expand its economic base and to develop its rich natural wealth in a manner that will bring about tremendous benefits to a wide cross-section of Guyanese. GGMC started very humbly and with the growth of the mining sector, it has been able to develop its capabilities as the main regulator and facilitator of the sector–creating and allowing new opportunities and helping stakeholders to confront various challenges. The Biennial National Mining and Quarrying Conference will be held during this year’s Mining Week activities. This event will highlight the importance of mining to the national economy. Participants will also illustrate the future development of extractive industries’ practices. This will further enhance the activities and give more organisational context to the anniversary celebrations.


Caricom Secretary General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque

he Caribbean C o m m u n i t y (Caricom) recently put forward a case to raise the level of funding from its international development partners (IDPs) and to increase the number of community priorities in the bilateral and regional programmes of the IDPs. Caricom Secretary General, Ambassador Irwin LaRocque wants to ensure that the community’s positions are reflected in ongoing discussions on donor coordination and aid effec-

tiveness, Small Island Developing and LowLying Coastal States (SIDS), and the Post2015 Development Agenda. The secretary general articulated the community’s position last week at the third HighLevel Forum on Donor Coordination at the Princess International Hotel, Providence, Guyana, where representatives of Caricom member states, community institutions and IDPs gathered for over a day-and-a half of talks.

“Caricom, as an integration grouping, approaches such issues on a collective basis. In fact, it forms part of our coordinated foreign policy. We will advance our case for improved access to resources in the ongoing discussions on the Post-2015 Development Agenda. We will link our foreign policy positions to access to resources. We have no choice in these matters if our people are to survive and if our countries are to be placed on a path to sustainable and resilient economic growth,” the secretary general said in remarks at the forum. The engagement with the international development partners is one step towards meeting the mandate of Caricom heads of government issued to the Caricom Secretariat at their justconcluded 34th regular meeting to design a Resource Mobilisation Strategy to ensure adequate financing of regional and national priorities to catalyse growth in member states.



week ending August 8, 2013 |

Developers secure US$171 million loan for Portmore hospital in Jamaica


evelopers of the long-awaited Portmore International Hospital and Medical City (PIHMC) in Jamaica have secured a US$170.5million (Ja$17.2-billion) loan facility for its construction. Projections now place completion of the development by 2017, following on over nine years of discussions and planning for the project. Omega Commercial Finance Corporation (OCFN), a Miami-based company in the commercial real estate sector, announced that its lending subsidiary, CCRE Capital will provide Cayjam (the developers) with a five-year loan that will enable them to build a smart, ecofriendly, private medical and knowledge city in Central Portmore. “PIHMC, when com-

pleted, will be the first of its kind in the Caribbean and will be positioned as a private health-care organisation with secondary and tertiary care, as well as medical tourism facilities,” said Omega in a press statement issued Tuesday. The primary feature of the development is the 64 to 120 bed multi-specialty, state-of-the-art, American-designed and operated hospital. It will feature a medical campus, located north-east of the property; a gated lakefront condominium complex for medical recovery and a limited number of townhouses for medical staff, as well as a shopping mall. Phase one of the development will see a 64bed hospital medical campus; a man-made, five-acre lake; and about 50 three-bedroom condos

An artist’s impression of the proposed Portmore International Hospital and Medical City in Jamaica

for medical recovery. Located on the northern side of Southborough Drive and extending to meet the Naggo Head to Gregory Park main road, the centre is expected to strengthen teaching opportunities through the

co-operation with the University of the West Indies (UWI) Medical School, foreign universities and medical teaching institutions. The latest standards in specialised diagnostic and therapeutic ser-

vices supported by information technology and telemedicine will also be applied. Cayjam has already started pre-construction and the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) by the National

Environment and Planning Agency has been completed. Construction of the proposed 104-acre multifacility medical structure was slated for completion by June 2011. But it wasn’t until May this year that Cayjam completed the final acquisition of the land from the National Insurance Fund (NIF), which signalled the long-awaited hospital, medical and knowledge centre. Prior to that, the developers did a massive site clearing and engineering assessment, followed by the stockpiling of stones and shingles for a 30-acre solar farm. Operationally for OCFN, the loan is projected to generate US$57 million in gross interest income over the phase of five years and US$3.4 million in origination fees. (Jamaica Observer)

Chinese engineers begin AFC to support Guyana’s hydro bill if re-tabled feasibility study for new port in Trinidad T


hinese engineers are currently in Trinidad and have started work on a feasibility study on a new port, Trade Minister Vasant Bharath reported Monday. He noted that the visit of the engineers was follow-up on the State visit of Chinese President in Xi Jinping in June. He said one of the major projects government was committed to undertake was a new port. “We believe that the current Port of Port-ofSpain is congested. It has outlived its purpose, because of where it’s situated,” he explained. He noted the new port was necessary to attract new vessels with the expansion of the Panama canal, and with a new canal being built in Nicaragua. He pointed out these vessels pass outside of TT and go down to places like Africa. “So we need to be able to have the facility to accommodate those large vessels,” he said. He did not, however, go into details about the port, or the work of the team of engineers. “And that is all I am able to say at this point in time,” he said. He was speaking with the media following the “Keys to Trade and Export Financing” meet-

TT’s Trade Minister Vasant Bharath (TT Newsday file photo)

ing held Monday at the Courtyard by Marriott at Invaders Bay, Port-ofSpain. During his address he noted that the Chinese government had committed US$3 billion of concessional funding to Caricom governments for infrastructure projects. He reported that the team of Chinese engineers in Trinidad was also looking at the rollout of industrial parks. He reported that the State agency Evolving Technologies (eTecK) was looking at accessing some Chinese funding for the roll-out of the parks which will cost

about TT$700 million over the next two years. He noted the parks will be specific to certain types of businesses, such as software companies, or warehousing. Questioned about his proposals for the upcoming national budget Bharath reported that he will be taking a note to Cabinet to have them look at approving the removal of Value Added Tax (VAT) for manufacturers on imported raw materials. He said there has been a backlog of VAT that has created major obstacles for local manufacturers, and traders generally. (TT Newsday)

he Alliance For Change said it was favourably considering its support for the Hydro Amendments (the Environmental Bill) if re-tabled. The party has also rejected the resignation of its chairman, Nigel Hughes, who has been caught up in an apparent conflict of interest position with his party and his post as company secretary of the Amaila Falls Hydro Inc (AFHI). Hughes, in a statement early Tuesday, announced that he had tendered his resignation as chairman of the seven-seat minority opposition party. However, in a statement late Tuesday afternoon, the AFC said its general secretary, David Patterson informed Hughes of the party’s receipt of his resignation from chairmanship. On behalf of the AFC management committee, the general secretary further advised Hughes that his resignation was not accepted, and that the party continues to repose full and complete confidence in him both as member and chairman. The party disclosed that Hughes was not a member of the AFC in April 2009 when he commenced professional engagement with AFHI/ Sithe Global and officially joined the party in July 2011. Additionally,

it said Hughes was elected chairman of the AFC on August 4, 2012. Therefore, the matters of professional engagement with AFHI predated by some time his membership in the party and further his election to the office of chairman. According to the AFC, Hughes had declared his professional association with Sithe

The Alliance For Change says it remains steadfastly supportive of hydropower projects in Guyana

Global as the Amaila Fall Hydropower Project came into national focus and requested of the party that he be recused from the decisionmaking process at every stage. “The party agreed and Mr Hughes has been so recused,” the release said.

AFCs position

The AFC added that it remains steadfastly supportive of hydropower projects (or any other alternative energy source options) with the express condition be-

ing that the benefits redound to the Guyanese people and the country. “The party’s position in this regard remains unchanged and the party recommits to representing the best interest of Guyanese in this regard.” It noted that its previously stated position on awaiting the hydropower project due diligence report from the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB) and the debt ceiling proposed by the motion (with regard to its sustainability) remains the same. “The party is favourably considering its support for the Hydro Amendments (the Environmental Bill) if re-tabled. Should the AFC support the bill, government will get a clear passage to have the legislation in place to move ahead...,” the minority opposition party noted. “The party wishes to assure its members and supporters, both in Guyana and overseas and all Guyanese, that it employed best practice at all times with regard to the formulation of decisions and the position of the party with regard to AFHI and indeed the party thanks Mr Hughes for his timely and forthright declaration of interest. This allowed the party to act responsibly and judiciously to avoid any potential conflicts.” The release stated.


News |week ending August 8, 2013

Nearly $10 billion in road improving works ongoing along East Bank Demerara in Guyana


Jamaica’s sugar dispute hangs in the balance


meeting at Jamaica’s labour ministry last Friday failed to resolve the dispute between Pan Caribbean Sugar Company and its unionised workers protesting against planned redundancies at the factories. Sources told Jamaican reporters that

tories-Bernard Lodge, Monymusk and Fromein the wake of recent allegations of 26 bearings going missing from the Monymusk factory in Clarendon. The dispute was triggered by the sending off of over 130 security guards on paid "discretionary" leave on July 21,

tories. He said that the union was also aware that the contract with the private firm would be for one year, initially, for Frome and Monymusk and six months for Bernard Lodge. "It is important to note that to date the company has not initiated a formal in-house investi-

Guyana’s Housing and Water Minister Irfaan Ali and his team during an inspection of road works on the East Bank Demerara recently

lose to Gy$10 billion is being invested into infrastructural improvements on the East Bank Demerara in Guyana to alleviate the large volume of traffic along that corridor. Housing and Water Minister Irfaan

and reiterated the benefits of the additional net work of roads linking the communities along the corridor. “This is the latest development of the East Bank Development Infrastructure Project, this is one of six 25 foot

The Farm access road

Ali made this disclosure while he pointed to the benefits of the expansion underway with the development of additional housing schemes in that area. Congruent to the housing development, the ministry has also undertaken to construct a series of “connecting” roads linking the schemes; among these are the access roads in Farm and Herstelling, where Gy$2 billion has already been invested. During a tour of the area last week, Ali and his team of engineers inspected the works done on these feeder roads

roads that will stretch all the way from Diamond to various points. This one is an 18 foot road that goes all the way down to the high voltage dam where the main collector’s road will be,” Ali explained, as he inspected the works completed at Farm. Meanwhile, Central Housing and Planning Authority (CHPA) Project Manager Fazal Wahab, who accompanied the minister and his team, noted that the goal of the construction of the alternative roadways is to link Ogle to Providence and then as time and revenue per-

mit, from Ogle to further down the East Bank. “This development is massive, it is over 4000 acres of land and at the end of it, we will see approximately 10 east to west connecting roads. So far we have identified six connecting roads going all the way initially from DiamondHerstelling area and then linking there to go on to Eccles. That would significantly take the burden off the existing East Bank Road congestion, not only to serve that purpose, but will also integrate the community from Diamond all the way to Eccles.” Wahab revealed too that at the end of the construction phase, commuters can expect to utilise roadways that will be completed above the international standard of a 12-foot carriageway. He said too that the road will definitely allow for easier access to the East Coast and Georgetown, saving commuters valuable time. The housing ministry is currently paving all the main roads leading into various schemes; this will be followed by the resurfacing of the internal roads as occupancy increases. (Guyana Times)

Woman arrested in connection with murder of Curacao political leader


olice in Curacao have arrested a 43-year-old woman in connection with the murder three months ago of Helmin Wiels, a popular local politician and, at the time, leader of the largest political party, Pueblo Soberano. The woman was arrested on Saturday and she is the second suspect to be linked to the politician’s assassination. The first suspect was 30-year-old Raul Jacinto Martinez, who

The late Helmin Wiels

was found dead a month after Wiels’ murder. According to sources,

Martinez provided a getaway car for the killer (s). Police also carried out two raids, assisted by the Criminal Investigation Team. A prosecutor was present at the raids. During the investigation at the homes, police seized items relevant to the investigation. What connection the woman has with the murder is not known and the police are not giving out any information. (CaribbeanNews)

A section of the Monymusk sugar factory in Jamaica (Jamaica Observer file photo)

there had been some progress at the meeting, towards resolving the issues which have triggered the current dispute. However, a resolution will depend on the outcome of the next meeting, scheduled for August 14. Pan Caribbean is understood to have made a three-point proposal to address issues which have led to their decision to restructure the security at all three fac-

and the dismissal of their supervisor. There is also the issue of a proposed redundancy involving 90 more workers, including 30 security guards, across all three factories. BITU deputy island supervisor, Harold Brown, said that his union was aware that Pan Caribbean had already signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with a private security firm to provide security services at all three fac-

gation into the matter, and is yet to discover the missing items," he pointed out. Brown said, however, that based on the progress made last Friday, the pre-crop season activities at the factories should remain normal over the next 12 days leading up to the next meeting, although the security guards will continue to protest against their dismissals. (Jamaica Observer)

Trinidad police searching for cop who absconded with baby


search is now on in Trinidad for a policeman who disappeared with his fourmonth-old son, 22 days ago, after he failed to give up the baby to a social worker and fellow officers despite numerous promises. The baby, Caleb Edwards, is at an age where he is breast fed, and his mother Theresse Roy, 31, has revealed that he is also under medical care for a breathing condition and seizures. Roy has not seen her baby since July 15, when his father, a police constable, took him from her home at Agostini Village, Rio Claro to meet his paternal grandfather and relatives at a village in east Trinidad. A senior police officer at Rio Claro Police Station confirmed a manhunt is on for the policeman who is also deemed to have abandoned his job. The constable, according to media reports from Trinidad, recently appeared in court on brib-

A search is on for four-month-old Caleb Edwards who has not been seen by his mother since July 15, after he was taken away by his father, a policeman (TT Newsday photo)

ery charges and the matter is due to be heard on October 11. Roy said she ended her relationship with Caleb’s father when they began to have problems. Roy is also very worried about the health of her baby, who is due to undergo tests for breathing problems he began experiencing shortly after he

was born in March. The mother said that at about 7 pm on July 16, the day Caleb was expected back home, she received a call from his father who said it was too late to travel to Rio Claro with the baby and she would see them the next morning. The policeman never took Caleb home. (Excerpt from TT Newsday)



week ending August 8, 2013 |

Ramotar, Jagdeo poll highest at PPP congress in Guyana


President Donald Ramotar

resident Donald Ramotar and his successor, former President Bharrat Jagdeo emerged as the top candidates when the People’s Progressive Party (PPP/C) 30th Congress voted for persons to sit on its Central Executive Committee. Ramotar polled 886 votes, while Jagdeo secured 851 to occupy the first and second spots respectively. Culture, Youth and Sport Minister Dr Frank Anthony copped 724 votes to come in at third, followed by Attorney General Anil Nandlall with 690 votes, Gail Teixeira 651, Navin Chandarpal 604, Dr Roger Luncheon 560, Indranie Chandarpal 552, Pauline Sukhai 546 and Clement Rohee 540, round off the top 10 candidates. Press and publicity officer at the Officer of the President Kwame McCoy was among some of the new comers in the committee with some 228 votes. Meanwhile, in a

statement, the PPP said the clarion call of the delegates to the 30th Congress, which concluded on Sunday, is for the PPP/C government to continue to work tirelessly to deliver higher levels of goods and services to the people of Guyana. These include health, housing, education, water, jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities; the mobilisation of the Guyanese masses to support the identified higher level of infrastructure development– Amaila Falls project, the Marriott Hotel, the road to Lethem, a deep-water harbour, a new crossing over the Demerara River, the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) expansion–and to intensify community activism to address development at the local/community level.

A success

The congress, the party said, was hailed by delegates and observers as among the most successful as it saw a higher

Former President Bharrat Jagdeo

level of participation and enthusiasm to stand by the party in bringing together the masses to realise a Guyana of peace, progress and prosperity. The congress was held during August 2 to 4, at the JC Chandisingh Secondary School, Port Mourant, Berbice, Region Six. Participating delegates and observers came from party groups stretching across the 10 administrative regions of Guyana, inclusive of

Organisation (PYO) joined party delegates and observers for a dynamic opening ceremony which set the tone for the subsequent plenary sessions over the three days. A major highlight of the congress was the report of the Central Committee delivered by the general secretary, President Donald Ramotar. The report analysed current political, socio-economic conditions in Guyana and the

significant hinterland delegations. Ministers of government, members of the diplomatic corps, representatives of fraternal organisations, both locally and overseas, representatives of the Woman Progressive Organisation (WPO) and the Progressive Youth

impact of the international political and economic environment. The Central Committee Report was an occasion for in-depth

discussion on the way forward in the present situation where the party operates from a minority position in Parliament. The Congress also

recognised those party activists who have contributed selflessly to the social and political work of the party for 25 and 50 years. (Excerpt from Guyana Times)


News | week ending August 8, 2013

Late folk music pioneer Olive Lewin, OM, heads Jamaica’s list of 138 honourees


he late Jamaica folk music pioneer, researcher, performer and educator, Olive Wilhelmina Mahoney Lewin leads the field of 138 Jamaicans being honoured for service to the nation on the National Honours and Awards list, released Monday night. Lewin, who will receive the Order of Merit (OM), posthumously, the country’s third highest honour, was born in Vere, Clarendon. She is a fellow of Trinity College, London, and an associate of the Royal Academy of Music and the Royal School of Music. Lewin wrote several books and made numerous recordings of folk music, performed by the Jamaican Folk Singers. She has

also been honoured by the United Nations, the Organisation of American States, the government of France and by academia for her outstanding lifelong contribution to the arts. She died on April 10 this year, aged 85.

Other awardees

Seven people were awarded the fourth highest honour, the Order of Jamaica (OJ). These are Kenneth “Kenny” Benjamin, founder of the Guardsman Group of Companies, for his contribution to the restoration and expansion of the Hope Zoo; Rev Dr Garnet Brown, who headed the National Irrigation Commission (NIC) and was a member of the 2001 commission of enquiry into the

Olive Lewin (Jamaica Observer photo)

killing of 27 persons in West Kingston, allegedly by the security forces, for services to agriculture; Easton Douglas, former Cabinet minister and People’s National Party (PNP) Member of Parliament for South East St Andrew, who now chairs the National Housing Trust (NHT), for public service; Oliver Jones, who founded and built the Island Life Insurance Company, Island Victoria Bank and Zenith Insurance Brokers, for contribution to the insurance industry and public service; Rev Ashley Smith, who was ordained a minister of the United Church of Jamaica and Grand

Cayman in 1955, for service to theology and education and; Sameer Younis, retail industry pioneer, for his exceptional contribution to community development and the retail industry. More so, popular reggae balladeer Hugh Beresford ‘Beres’ Hammond, who joined the former Zap Pow band as lead singer in 1975 but, eventually, launched a very successful solo career, during which he wrote and recorded a number of huge reggae is among the awardees too. Thirty-five people were awarded the Order of Distinction, Commander Class (CD),

including: Minister of Health Dr Fenton Ferguson; opposition spokesman on finance and former minister of finance and the public service, Audley Shaw; poet, Professor Lorna Goodison; former boxing champion George ‘Bunny’ Grant; Professor Verene Shepherd, head of the National Reparations Commission; the late ska singer, Delroy Wilson; public servant, philanthropist and community worker, Leighton McKnight; agriculturalist Dr Keith Amiel; retailer Phillip Abdoub Azar; Wallace Campbell; former leading football coach, Winston ChungFah; Professor Carolyn Cooper; and a number of jurists, including Justice Horace Raymond Marsh; Justice Donald McIntosh; Justice Norma McIntosh and the Hon Justice Hilary Phillips.

Service to Jamaican diaspora in Canada

There were 45 Order of Distinction, (Officer Class) awardees, including: dancehall deejay Patrick ‘Charlie

Chaplin’ Bennett; former boxing champion, Richard ‘Shrimpy’ Clarke; PR expert Elaine Commissiong; broadcaster Simon Crosskill; racehorse trainer Wayne DaCosta; the Rev Devon Dick; former MP Harry Douglas; CHASE Fund boss, Wilford “Billy” Heaven; fishing industry pioneer Havland Honeyghan; diaspora leader, Irwine G Clare. There were 52 awards of the Badge of Honour for Gallantry and Meritorious and Faithful Service. They included Renaldo Davis for gallantry in assisting an accident victim on the Port Henderson Road on May 31, 2012 and Captain Samuel Wenzel Billich for meritorious service contributing to the Jamaican diaspora in Canada. The honours and awards will be presented by Governor General Sir Patrick Allen on National Heroes Day, Monday October 21, but take effect from Tuesday, Independence Day. (Jamaica Observer)

Berbice Expo generated sales, exposure for businesses - GTA reports


Flashback: President Donald Ramotar viewing an exhibit at the ninth annual Berbice Expo in Guyana

he recent ninth annual Berbice Exposition and Trade Fair has been deemed a tremendous success as it generated a huge increase in sales for businesses in the county. Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) Director Indranauth Haralsingh lauded the level of organisation and planning by the Berbice Chamber of Commerce and other stakeholders. He said even though there were some disappointments expressed about the absence of the big businesses from Georgetown, the overall response was positive. “We were well supported…all of the booths were taken and it allowed a lot of micro, medium and large businesses to have a presence in Berbice…all of the ho-

tels in New Amsterdam and Lower Corentyne were completely booked. No rooms were available, the businesses were busy and the restaurants were filled; it generated a lot sales for Berbice and the Berbice Chamber of Commerce,” Haralsingh said. The four-day event was well-attended and the final night saw the largest crowd. The favourable weather conditions that persisted over the period and the cultural programmes to entertain were well-received by both visitors and exhibitors. The GTA and the tourism ministry also coordinated and facilitated the presence of many companies from the tourism sector, such as Aracari, Evergreen

Adventures, Arrowpoint Nature Resort, Fly Jamaica, Air Services Limited, Mangrove Heritage Trail, and Little Rock Suites and Television Studios. “Overall, it was a very good expo; it was good to see so many persons there by the thousands from all over,” Haralsingh posited. This year, the expo was held under the theme “Raising our Standards, Enhancing our Competitiveness”. Meanwhile, the GTA is actively involved in the promotion of the upcoming R Kelly Concert, as well as the Sammi Yussuf Concert, a London-based international artiste who will be performing at the Guyana National Stadium on September 28. (Guyana Times)



week ending August 8, 2013 |

PM Kamla says ‘no early general election’ P rime Minister Kamla PersadBissessar Tuesday declared that the ruling People’s Partnership coalition would serve its full five year term in government despite recent events and calls from opposition leader Dr Keith Rowley, for an early general election. Speaking to reporters following the official commissioning ceremony for the TT$56 million Siparia market, High Street, Siparia, PersadBissessar was asked her opinion on Rowley’s call for general elections following her party, the United National Congress’s defeat in the Chaguanas West byelection won by former UNC chairman and minister Jack Warner.

Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar greets a constituent at the opening of the TT$56 million market in Siparia Tuesday. (TT Newsday photo)

“From May 2010, the opposition has been calling for general election so that is not a new call,”

Persad-Bissessar said, adding, “I think that is part of their mandate and part of their job to

seek to have an early election.” “Three years have gone by, that has not yet

happened, I have no intention of calling an early election, ‘Inshallah’, as they say, we have a mandate for five years and we intend to proceed to work to serve the people in these five years,” she said. Persad-Bissessar also quashed reports of a Cabinet reshuffle this week as “premature”. “I have not made any final decision, we are still in the process of introspection, reflection and consultation with as many persons as we can, it will premature for me to say yea we are doing X or Y,” she continued. “I have not even had a phone discussion with MPs, ministers, and therefore it is premature. We need to have that discussion.”

She also dismissed suggestions that ministers would leave her government, saying only a few councillors had left the party while only one minister had tendered his resignation following a cloud of allegations over him, referring to Warner. “One minister was already no longer in the Cabinet (former Justice Minister Herbert Volney who has resigned from the party but remains St Joseph MP), one minister resigned from the Cabinet given allegations. Thus far I have not had any information of any other minister actually leaving the Cabinet, if that arises we will deal with it in due course,” she said. (TT Newsday)

Trinidadian environmentalist once Fan electrocuted during Zouks/ again stages protest outside PM’s office Hawksbills CPL clash in St Lucia


ess than a year after he staged a 21day hunger strike to force the Trinidad and Tobago government to halt the construction of a multi-billion dollar highway, south of Port of Spain, environmentalist Dr. Wayne Kublalsingh is back staging another protest action outside the office of Prime Minister Kamla PersadBissessar. Kublalsingh said while he would not be engaging in another hunger strike, he would nonetheless be protesting peacefully the construction of the Debe to Mon Desir segment of the TT$$7.2 billion San Fernando to Point Fortin highway project. The 53-year-old en-

Dr. Wayne Kublalsingh (TT Newsday file photo)

vironmentalist said that he and members of the Highway Re-Route Movement will be protesting outside the prime minister’s office until she meets with them and makes her position clear

on whether she will abide by the James Armstrong report. “I want her to tell the nation whether she is going to blank this report or whether she is going to do the truthful thing and obey the voice of the people and truth,” he said, after he delivered a letter to the prime minister’s press secretary Francis Joseph. Last year, civil society groups, including the Joint Consultative Council, mediated between the government and the Re-Route Movement resulting in the establishment of an independent review committee, headed by former Independent senator Dr James Armstrong. (TT Newsday)

TT discovers drugs imported from Jamaica, St Vincent


rinidad and Tobago police say they have discovered a quantity of marijuana with a street value of nearly three million TT dollars. They said the drugs, found in the forest of Santa Cruz, north east of Port of Spain, were most likely smuggled into the country from Jamaica and St Vincent and the Grenadines. Members of the North Eastern Division Task Force said they had also confiscated two guns, including a highpowered MP 40 submachine that may have been used in the murder of five people over the last weekend. Vice-president of the Police Social and Welfare

The drugs were found in the forest of Santa Cruz (file photo)

Association, Inspector Roger Alexander, said the drugs, valued at TT$2.6 million, may have entered the coun-

try through the unprotected borders and called for increased patrols to secure the borders. (TT Newsday)


cricket fan in St Lucia was electrocuted during a Caribbean Premier League (CPL) match between St. Lucia Zouks and Antigua Hawkbills at the Beausejour Ground Tuesday night, media reports have said. Julian Agard was

electrocuted in the vicinity of the Laborie/ Soufriere stands at about 10:30 pm while the game, a CPL preliminary round fixture, was in full swing. Reports from Castries say Agard, a former police officer and basketball coach, was al-

ready dead when he was brought to the medical centre. He was also a former member of the St Lucia Youth Council. St. Lucia Zouks lost the match by 33 runs as the Hawkbills got their first taste of victory in the tournament.


News | week ending August 8, 2013

PPP/C hasn’t strayed from Dr Jagan’s ideals–President Ramotar


resident Donald Ramotar said the People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) will not shift from its role of improving the lives of all Guyanese as envisioned by late founding leader and president, Dr Cheddi Jagan. Addressing hundreds of delegates at the opening of the party’s 30th Congress held at the JC Chandisingh Secondary School, Port Mourant, Berbice last Friday, the president said Dr Jagan’s principles of social justice, hard work, unity in the face of division and investment in the people of Guyana are, and will always be the hallmarks of the PPP/C. “As the People’s Progressive Party, we have a duty to fight for these principles and never to relent–even in the

ible and has to be defended every day, with the aim of forging ahead the developmental agenda in the interests of all Guyanese.

Nonsensical stance

President Donald Ramotar addressing the PPP/C’s 30th Congress at the JC Chandisingh Secondary School, Port Mourant, Berbice

face of an uncompromising and uncomprehending opposition. I make this personal commitment that I, as president and head of state, will not relent. And as general secretary of your party, I commit you, members of the People’s Progressive Party, to

never ever relent either,” he stated. “We cannot afford to do so because we strive for the people, and it is their dreams that we were elected to protect, foster and realise. We will press forward,” he assured. Acknowledging that

there are challenges, the president noted that, “in the face of those challenges we must be resolute. We must not allow those who seek to reduce our Parliament to a farce and impede our efforts to invest in our future to win, for what they fail to see is that every time

they pat themselves on the back for supposedly embarrassing the government, it is in fact a defeat for the brighter future they claim to want for our people.” The president said the progress made in Guyana today is not invincible, not irrevers-

He pointed out that the developmental path has come under threat by the opposition’s nonsensical stance that growth can be achieved by cutting investment. Ramotar said the opposition’s plans have nothing to do with growth and everything to do with cutting the PPP/C’s nose to spite the face of all Guyanese. He noted that since 2011, the opposition has sought to continually block government’s proposals, tried to denigrate its ideals and attempted to use Parliament to block social and economic progress. (Excerpt from Guyana Times)

Jamaican gov’t, private sector, trade unions ‘People should decide on CCJ’ – AG Ramlogan and civil society sign social partnership


Signatories to the Partnership for Jamaica Agreement Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller (centre), President of the Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica (PSOJ), Christopher Zacca (left); President of the Jamaica Confederation of Trade Unions Lloyd Goodleigh (second right); Youth Advocate, Jamaica Youth Advocacy Group, Kemesha Kelly, representing civil society groups, are joined by former Prime Minister Bruce Golding as they display copies of the agreement during last Friday’s signing ceremony at King’s House in Kingston, Jamaica. (Bryan Cummings/Jamaica Observer photo)

he Jamaican government, private sector, trade unions and civil society last Friday signed the historic Social Partnership Agreement to create national dialogue and consensus on issues relating to economic growth and development. The opposition Jamaica Labour Party (JLP), however, did not attend the signing at King’s House where representatives from the respective groups affixed their signature to the long-awaited agreement, which Governor General Sir Patrick Allen said will help to address tribal politics. Former Prime Minister Bruce Golding was, however, in attendance and was com-

mended for his role in the process, although his party did not sign. Sir Patrick said the signing of the agreement commits all parties involved to work together for the full emancipation of Jamaica and was significant as it came on the eve of Emancipation Day. “Our nation needs to free itself from the corrosive tribalism which has impeded a unified attack on our ingrained socioeconomic problems,” Sir Patrick said. He added that leaders in all sectors must liberate the genius, which is within them to craft and implement policies and programmes for the long-term good of the country “regardless of the impact on the ballot box, membership

loyalty or the short term bottom line”. “We need all Jamaicans to believe that there is a genuine commitment to abide by the provisions of the partnership agreement. All Jamaicans must soon begin to see a positive change in how the partners interact with each other and in their accountability to the people of Jamaica, otherwise alienation, cynicism and mistrust of leadership will deepen,” Sir Patrick said. Prime Minister Portia Simpson Miller said the signing of the social partnership comes at a critical point in the nation’s progress, and she urged the partners to move from the historical signing into action and to concentrate on

the specific priorities in the agreement and focus on the national agenda. “We will continue to inform ourselves about the progress and hold each other accountable for our part in the process,” Simpson Miller said. In the meantime, Professor Alvin Wint of the University of the West Indies said Jamaica has had a history of political leaders who have been deeply committed to enhancing the welfare of Jamaicans. Former and current political leaders, the university professor said, have created a foundation on which the firstever signing of a social partnership in Jamaica is built. (Excerpt from Jamaica Observer)

TT’s Attorney General Anand Ramlogan (TT Guardian file photo)


rinidad and Tobago’s Attorney General Anand Ramlogan says people should be allowed to decide if the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) should replace the Privy Council as TT’s final court of appeal. However, in an interview with TT media on Sunday, he said that making this issue part of the upcoming local government elections would not allow enough time for proper discussion on a national level as the elections are scheduled to be held in two months. “I agree with President (Anthony) Carmona and support the idea of a referendum outlined by (him), but I do not think it is one that could be dealt with within the local government elections given the proximity of the is-

sues and its complexity,” Ramlogan said. Addressing the ceremonial opening of Parliament last Friday, President Carmona called for a free vote in Parliament via secret ballot to allow Members of Parliament to decide whether the CCJ should be made TT’s highest court of justice. He further said if the parliamentarians are not inclined to make the change, then the matter should be dealt with through a public referendum. Carmona suggested the upcoming local government elections would be an “ideal opportunity” to deal with the issue. In order for the CCJ to become the final court, it would require a special majority in Parliament, which includes the opposition and independent benches. Referring to the issues that people from the different parties have toward the CCJ, Ramlogan said, “There may be many interested groups and stakeholders outside the political process who should be heard. I do not know if parties would take positions or allow individuals to speak fully and openly and independently which is perhaps what President Carmona alluded to when he mentioned a consensus vote, but it is a matter that remains debatable and on discussion.” (Excerpt from TT Newsday)



week ending August 8, 2013 |

Umbrella trade union body says some 35,000 Guyanese workers to be affected - if opposition refuses to approve Amaila project


he Federation of Independent Trade Unions of Guyana (FITUG) has expressed concern that approximately 35,000 of its members will be negatively impacted by the failure of the Parliament, specifically the joint opposition, to pass necessary legislation that will see the Amaila Falls project become a reality. FITUG in a release said its members are employees in the public and private sectors, who cannot afford to have their salaries and wages consumed by electricity costs that will soon increase if this project does not bear fruit.

“The FITUG bemoans the dreaded potential of higher electricity rates for the present and future generations, loss of employment from new investments and the untrustworthiness Guyana would now be characterised by, due to the opposition’s parliamentary selfishness. “We are appealing to the joint opposition to put the working class citizens of Guyana first as Parliament meets over the coming days to debate issues of national importance, including the retabling of the Hydro Electric Power (Amendment Bill 2013) and the

The Federation of Independent Trade Unions of Guyana (FITUG) says some 35,000 of its workers will be affected if the joint opposition does not approve the Amaila project

Guarantee of Loans (Public Corporations and Companies) Act.” Every stakeholder, including the political parties, the private sector, local and foreign investors and the

humble householder-consumer, accept that there is an overdue need for cheaper, renewable energy. FITUG is also concerned that jobs for its

members will be lost if the international donor and investor communities take a cue from the opposition’s disapproval and not risk any investment or contribution in the future. In addition, hopes for large local scale manufacturing will be dashed or put on hold as a result of the opposition’s selfish stances. “FITUG is reminded that the dream of renewable hydro power from our blessed water resources has been around long before the advent of the PPP/C administration of 1992 and onwards. FITUG is also aware of government’s openness

with the opposition over the past weeks when both foreign and local stakeholders briefed the opposition and made documents readily available. How will the opposition explain their rejection of these needed pieces of legislation when millions are being spent on the access roads to the proposed facility?” FITUG is hoping that the opposition will engage in introspection since their own constituents, who also feel the brunt of high electricity costs, would appeal to their better judgment by reminders of why they are in the House in the first place.

Former administration was eavesdropping on citizens - Grenada PM


renada’s Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell told legislators that equipment capable of intercepting communications had been purchased by the previous administration.

“We found one piece that has the ability to monitor a person’s home from as far a half a mile away. All they needed to do was zoom into the house and listen to whatever was being discussed,”

Grenada’s Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell

Mitchell told legislators, as Parliament debated the 2013 Interception Communications Bill. Grenada has no legislation outlining penalties for any person illegally intercepting communications. The

New HIV initiative for Jamaica Jamaica, said that effectively battling HIV/ AIDS will take much effort from people in leadership. "Leadership takes many forms. It is not unique to political leaders," he said, noting that all citizens have a part to play in controlling the spread of HIV/AIDS. (Jamaica Observer)

Jamaica’s Health Minister Fenton Ferguson speaks with Arun Kashyap, United Nations resident co-ordinator for Jamaica; Christine Arab, representative for the UN Women Multi- Country Office - Caribbean; and Nazneen Damji, UN women policy advisor for gender equality and HIV/AIDS. (Joseph Wellington photo)


edeviled by the crippling effects of HIV/AIDS on national development, the government of Jamaica has implemented a 'One Authority for Sexual Reproductive Health' to help stymie the pandemic. The disclosure was made by Health Minister Fenton Ferguson who described the body as a synergy between the National Family Planning Board (NFPB) and the National HIV Programme (NHP). "This initiative addresses the issue of the absence of one clearly identifiable

AIDS Authority," said Ferguson. "We see this as a synergistic integration. The Authority will have a broad based multisector mandate to continue ensuring efficient and effective countrylevel response to HIV. The National Family Planning Board will now have legal status and a legal mandate to manage and co-ordinate the national programme," he continued. Ferguson said that the policies of both the NFPB and the NHP are compatible as both focus on the safe and responsible sexual practices

with HIV prevention and family planning as components of reproductive health. He said that the formation of the new entity will promote one of the key strategies outlined in Jamaica's Vision 2030 national development plan. Ferguson was speaking last Tuesday at the opening ceremony of the Global Validation and Lessons Learned Workshop of Support for Gender Equality in the context of HIV/AIDS. Meanwhile, Dr Arun Kashyap, UN resident co-ordinator/UNDP resident representative to

new bill provides for law enforcement officials to apply to a Court for an order before intercepting anyone’s communication. Mitchell, whose New National Party (NNP) won all 15 seats in the

February 19 general election, said he is convinced that there were some people close within the Tillman Thomas administration who engaged in illegal interception of communication. (Jamaica Observer)


News |week ending August 8, 2013

Guyana power company downsizes staff T

he Guyana Power and Light (GPL) Inc has seen a reduction in its staff complement, Chairman Winston Brassington disclosed. Speaking at the Economic Services and Natural Resources Parliamentary Sectoral Committee Meeting at the National Assembly last week, Brassington said: “The general direction of employment for GPL would be downwards.” This downward spiral, he said, has been linked to a series of changes and investments made by the power company. “For example, within the next five years, we’d have more than doubled our capacity of Wärtsiläs [generators] and by the time, the Vreed-en-Hoop plant is

commissioned, we would have moved from 44 megawatts of Wärtsiläs to 106 megawatts of Wärtsiläs,” he explained. These operations are outsourced and managed by the Operations and Maintenance (O&M) services of Wärtsilä Corporation.

Outsourced operations

“The majority of our power station today comes basically from outsourced operations,” the board chairman noted, as he pointed out that the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) also supplies power to GPL. Additionally, in 2011, GPL, with US$3 million in financing from the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB), installed a Customer Information System. The computerised system absorbed the

Guyana’s Prime Minister Samuel Hinds

GPL Chairman Winston Brassington

functions of a number of employees. In 2004, GPL had 1101 permanent employees; however, with the harnessing of technology, outsourcing and reorganising of the operations of the company, the permanent staff complement dropped to 779 in 2009. At the end of 2012, there was a slight in-

crease to 810. Brassington said over the years, the number of temporary and contracted employees has grown. At the end of 2012, there were 186 temporary workers and 179 contracted employees. The company is, however, facing a serious shortage of qualified and skilled employees to oc-

cupy senior posts. “Despite advertising, we are having difficulty finding and retaining key technical staff and so this is an issue for GPL,” the chairman revealed. To boost its operations, GPL has garnered the support of IDB in the establishment of a corporate development plan. According to Brassington, “We expect by the second quarter of next year, that through funding and through support from the IDB, we will have some support to the managerial team; improving our managerial capabilities, improving the overall operations of GPL at every level.” Addressing questions raised on the impact of the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project on GPL, Prime Minister

Samuel Hinds told the committee members headed by People’s Progressive Party/ Civic (PPP/C) Member of Parliament Manzoor Nadir, that there will be a significant reduction in generation cost if the hydropower plant comes on stream. According to Hinds, it will be reduced from an average of 23 cents per kilowatt hour (kWH) to less than 12 cents per kWh. “So when one takes account for the losses, the number could be 50 per cent more the reduction,” he said. Since the 1980s, there have been talks of reducing the tariffs to facilitate more industry, Hinds said, noting that the hydropower project will bring this dream to fruition. (Excerpt from Guyana Times)

JN Money Transfer expands in Caribbean and the Pacific


N Money Services Limited (JNMS) has expanded its JN Money Transfer network to over 8000 locations, up from 350 agents and branches at the start of the year. In particular, the company has been able to extend its remittance services to Guyana, Barbados, Trinidad and Antigua in

the Caribbean, and the Philippines in the Pacific as a result of partnerships with G-xchange in the Philippines and Laparkan Financial Services in Guyana. JN Money Transfer's network now stretches across eight countries in the Caribbean, including Jamaica. "We are a Jamaican company, a subsidiary

of Jamaica National Building Society; and our customer base encompasses our Jamaicans at home, and those in the diaspora," said Leesa Kow, general manager, JNMS. JNMS's expansion thrust picked up steam in 2010, when it acquired the assests of the Cayman-based remitter, QuikCash, to become the

main remitter along the Cayman to Jamaica corridor Following that acquisition, JNMS also added new branches and Agent locations to its operations in the United States of America, Canada and the United Kingdom and solidified its Agent partnership in Ghana in 2011, increasing its JN Money Transfer network, at the time, to more than 350 agents and branches. Laparkan, a subsidiary of one of the Caribbean's leading freight handlers, has nine payout locations in Guyana, and, its post office outlets will soon be included to bring the number of remittance payout locations across

the South American Caricom member state to more than 50. What's more, the company has a combined six locations in Trinidad, Antigua and Barbados. Kow added that the Philippines-based, GCASH REMIT partnership will be very important to the company's US and Canadian markets, as well as Cayman Islands operations. The US is home to about 3.4 million Filipinos, while over 400,000 live in Canada. Filipinos are also the second largest group of migrants in the Cayman Islands. With GCASH REMIT, senders are assured that their hard

earned money is claimed securely and instantly by their beneficiaries without any hassle. Also, beneficiaries receive the remittance without any deductions across 8,000 GCASH outlets nationwide," Kow noted. JNMS, which is based in Kingston, Jamaica, markets its services under the JN Money Transfer brand, in several other Caribbean countries, including St Vincent and the Grenadines, and Dominica. The company also has extensive and growing operations in the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Canada, and Ghana. (Excerpt from Jamaica Observer)



week ending August 8, 2013 |

Eight Guyanese crash victims serve writs on CAL C

aribbean Airlines Limited in Port-ofSpain has been served with writs from attorneys representing eight Guyanese passengers seeking compensation for injuries, losses and damage they suffered when Flight BW523 crash landed in Guyana two years ago. Several other lawsuits have been filed in the New York courts, two of which were filed over a year ago. The writs were served locally on CAL on July 29, and lawsuits filed in the Guyana courts on July 26. In response to the lawsuits, CAL Corporate Communications Director, Clint Williams, told TT media that, “it would be inappropriate for CAL to say anything at this time, because

the matters are ongoing.” According to the lawsuits filed by attorneys-at-law Sase Gunraj and Jaya Singh on behalf of the passengers, CAL is required to enter an appearance within ten days after the writ was served. The passengers who filed lawsuits in Guyana, six from Guyana and two from the United States, are each claiming damages in excess of Gy$1 million (TT$34,000) “arising out of the negligent operation” of Flight BW 523. The CAL-operated aircraft overshot the runway at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport on July 30, 2011. The aircraft broke in half when it stopped on a dirt road some 200 feet away from a ravine. According to media reports out of Trinidad, among

The ill-fated BW 523 flight crash victim, Noel Elliot, wearing a prosthetic right leg. (TT Newsday photo)

those who have filed lawsuits in the New York courts are members of an extended family of seven who “are still waiting on Caribbean Airlines to fulfill some promises, to assist with medical expenses.” The hearing into the matter in New York has been pending the outcome of the report of the investigations into the crash landing. Director General of the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority, Zulfikar Mohammed, told TT media on Monday that the final report was almost complete. Once completed, he said it will be handed over to Guyana’s Public Works and Communications Minister, Robeson Benn, who is expected to make the report public.

There has been several draft reports, including a “final draft” in which, a Guyanese official close to the investigations told reporters that investigators “found that the crash was due to human error.” No one died in the crash, but passenger, Guyanese Noel Elliot of Washington DC suffered a broken right leg. He was hospitalised in Guyana for several days before flying to New York where the leg was amputated. Elliot’s medical expenses were taken care of by CAL which has also outfitted him with a prosthetic leg. He has not yet returned to work, and he is not among those who are suing CAL. “I have not sued CAL,” he told reporters. (TT Newsday)

Venezuela to hike Petrocaribe interest rates

Under the Petrocaribe agreement, members can buy oil or refined products from Venezuela at favourable rates and through a long term financing agreement at low interest rates.


he Venezuelan government is set to increase the interest rate it charges to finance oil purchases by Central American and Caribbean countries under the Petrocaribe deal. According to reports from online financial news agency Platts, the increase stems from higher administrative and maintenance costs of the loans.

Platts is a division of McGraw Hill Financial, a leader in credit ratings, benchmarks and analytics for the global capital and commodity markets. Since the creation of Petrocaribe in 2005, 17 member countries have enjoyed an annual interest rate between one and two percent, but as of October that will rise to 2.4 percent.

The source said the planned increases are permitted under the agreements Venezuela signed with the participating countries. He added that no additional increases in rates are being contemplated in the near term. The report states that Venezuela is unlikely to reduce or suspend oil shipments to the debtor countries given the political value it sees in the oil alliance. Heads of state and government of Petrocaribe member countries are set to meet in September. In reacting to news of the planned increase, Jamaica’s Energy Minister Phillip Pauwell said he was not aware of this move. The opposition Jamaica Labour Party’s (JLP) spokesman on energy Gregory Mair

nevertheless said he is not surprised. “Because of the precarious financial situation that Venezuela is in, I’m not surprised, but what is of real concern is what we could see in the future is a tightening of the terms and conditions of the Petrocaribe agreement, meaning that they could reduce the credit lines and probably we

would have to find more US dollars to pay them on a monthly basis which would put more pressure on the foreign exchange rate for us in Jamaica." Under the Petrocaribe agreement, members can buy oil or refined products from Venezuela at favourable rates and through a long term financing agreement at low interest rates.

Petrocaribe members are Antigua and Barbuda, Honduras, Bahamas, Jamaica, Belize, Nicaragua, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Dominica, St Kitts and Nevis, Grenada, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Guatemala, St Lucia, Guyana, Suriname and Haiti. (CMC)


News | week ending August 8, 2013

Guyana’s healthcare system boosted with 200 new doctors


ore than 300 Cuba-trained G u y a n e s e have returned from the Spanish-speaking island to serve their country. Earlier this week 200 medical doctors arrived at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), Timehri and last Tuesday, a batch of 99 graduates comprising agronomists and engineers. Public Service Minister Dr Jennifer Westford was at hand to welcome the students. “We are going to be having 300 plus new professionals coming into Guyana, and obviously this means we have new skills to aid development,” she explained to the media last Tuesday, the gov-

ernment Information Agency (GINA) reported. With the return of those trained in medicine, she said, “we can now offer a better quality care”. The graduates, reflecting on their journey through their studies, highlighted that it was challenging residing in a different country, adapting to the culture and lifestyle, nevertheless they were optimistic about achieving their goals. Ganesh Omapersaud said he was happy to conclude his studies, graduating and becoming certified. He added that over the past six years, while learning medicine, he also learnt about Cuban culture. Emmawattie Sateova

Guyana’s Public Service Minister Dr Jennifer Westford, graduates and their relatives at the Cheddi Jagan International Airport following their arrival from Cuba recently

Samaroo after studying for seven years, said she is ready to work hard and is confident about the health system improving. She added that it was a good idea by the government to provide such an opportunity to Guyanese who cannot afford to study in another

country. Nikita McKenzie expressing her happiness on returning from Cuba after studying for seven years, said that she has learnt more than what was expected. She too is grateful that government is giving Guyanese opportu-

nities to pursue studies overseas. Ready to serve his country, Kwesi Vancooten, who completed seven years of studies, said he was overwhelmed and satisfied that the government was able to provide such an opening to him.

Former presidents of Guyana and Cuba, Bharrat Jagdeo and Fidel Castro, several years ago, agreed that Guyana will send 500 students to be trained in Cuba under a special Cuban scholarship programme in the disciplines of medicine, mechanical engineering, computer engineering, electrical engineering, culture, sport, agriculture, and architecture among others. At that time, Guyana was experiencing a shortage of doctors. Throughout the years, Guyana has been sending students, the first batch totalling 300 and continuing with smaller numbers over the years. (Guyana Times)

British naval vessel to help with Jamaica’s drug fight


amaica’s effort to tackle the perennial problem of drugtrafficking in her waters will be getting a much needed boost from Britain's Royal Navy. Come early next week, Her Majesty's

Ship Lancaster, which is currently docked at the Kingston Harbour, will set out in search of drugrunners, Commander Steve Moorhouse told reporters who were given a tour of the 400-foot-long vessel last Friday.

Moorhouse described the effort as a "strengthening of bonds" with Jamaica and said that the exercise is a jointeffort with a number of countries, including the United States of America, to "stop the flow of narcot-

ics" in the region. Highlighting the benefits of having such a vessel in the drug fight, Moorhouse said that his ship, during an exercise in the eastern Caribbean recently, intercepted a yacht and go-fast boat carrying a "sizeable amount" of ganja and cocaine. He said that five people were arrested in that

incident, but declined further details about the operation. The ship, which is equipped with two 20foot speedboats and a multi-purpose Lynx helicopter, will end its tour in December, Lieutenant Oliver Bekier told reporters. The authorities have reported an increase in

the quantity of narcotics seized in Jamaican waters since the start of the year. In all of 2012 some 5,713 pounds of marijuana was intercepted by Jamaica's Marine Police. Up to July this year, the Marine Police had already seized 5,908 pounds of ganja and 44 high-end boats. (Jamaica Observer)

TT’s president appoints four new senators in unprecedented act


n economist, two attorneys and an energy expert became Trinidad and Tobago’s newest Independent Senators when they took the oath of office last Friday afternoon during the ceremonial opening of the Fourth Session of the tenth Parliament. This follows a move that has been described as a complete departure from practice and unprecedented in Trinidad and Tobago’s post-Republican history when President Anthony Carmona revoked the appointments of four of nine senators appointed by his predecessor. The senators who have been replaced are Corinne Baptiste-McKnight, James Armstrong, Professor Harold Ramkissoon, and Dr Lennox St Bernard. The four new senators are: Dr Dhanayshar Mahabir, a leading economist; Hugh Russell Ian Roach, an attorney with experience in civil, criminal, public, labour and military law; Anthony Vieira, practising attorney in civil, industrial, family and criminal law; and David Small, an energy expert. According to the constitution, the president appoints nine of the 31 senators, the government

Newly appointed Independent Senator Dr Dhanyshar Mahabir, left, is congratulated by TT’s Finance Minister Larry Howai last Friday at the formal opening of the new parliamentary term. At centre is David Small, while partly hidden to the right is Anthony Viera, both also newly appointed Independent Senators. (TT Newsday photo)

appoints 16 and the other six are appointed by the opposition. A senate appointment can be revoked at any time, however, traditionally, presidents have changed independent senators at the end of the life of a Parliament, which comes with the calling of a general election. Last Friday, Vieira was sworn in at 1.36 pm. He was followed by energy expert Small at 1.38 pm. Then it was the turn of economist Dr Mahabir. The fourth and final new Independent Senator, attorney Roach, previously served as a temporary senator earlier this year, so he was familiar with the pro-

cess. The sitting of the Lower and Upper Houses was then suspended to allow all Parliamentarians to be present in the main chamber for President Anthony Carmona’s address. The president’s speech was hailed by many as a brutally honest reminder to all Members of Parliament of their duty to serve the public with honour and respect. He also called for the Caribbean Court of Justice (CCJ) to be made TT’s final court of appeal and for MPs to introduce and pass campaign finance reform, among other things. (Excerpt from TT Newsday)



week ending August 8, 2013 |

New cruise terminal to be Jack Warner returns to built in Barbados ‘I’ve come back home’


arbados is set to embark on the construction of a new cruise terminal, which will finally pave the way to separate the cruise and cargo facilities at the Bridgetown Port. The Sugar Point Development, as it is being called, is to be constructed in two phases over a period of two years. That is according to Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Tourism and International Transport, Senator Irene SandifordGarner. She revealed that the building of this ultra modern cruise facility will be led by the Barbados Port Inc., and will also feature joint ventures with a number of cruise tourism entities. The Parliamentary Secretary explained that the first phase will include the reclamation of 15 acres of waterfront land, the construction of two cruise piers, arrival and departure facilities, a shopping centre and a

Parliamentary Secretary in Barbados’ Ministry of Tourism and International Transport Senator Irene Sandiford-Garner

parking facility. “Those of you who are familiar with our cruise terminal at present, you know that cargo takes place in the same area that we have visitor arrivals… we have now taken steps to end that once and for all, with the Sugar Point Cruise Terminal,” she said. The Senator made the disclosure while speaking during a press conference and breakfast hosted by the Barbados

Tourism Authority at the Hilton Hotel Saturday morning, for 40 international journalists drawn from across the Caribbean, the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Italy and The Netherlands, who are currently in Barbados to cover the Crop Over Festival and that coverage she said, has been assessed to be in the region of US$1 million. Meanwhile, Senator Sandiford-Garner explained that the Barbadian government will also be examining the sustainable tourism aspect of the industry, and has already put steps in place to achieve this. She told those gathered the ministry of tourism will also launch a programme to increase the number of Green Globe Certified hotels, and implement an international marketing strategy promoting Barbados as a sustainable green and clean energy destination. (Excerpt from Barbados Advocate)

Jamaican authorities troubled by rise in domestic violence in St Mary


esidents of St Mary and nearby parishes in Jamaica have been expressing alarm at the number of domestic-related murders that have been taking place in the parish. Since the start of the year, approximately 60 per cent of murders in the parish are said to be linked to domestic violence, police statistics show. The struggle continues as the police are now dealing with another case of murder, resulting from domestic violence. This comes after a woman who was chopped in the head, allegedly by her husband more than a month ago, succumbed to the injuries recently. The family of businesswoman Marsha Morrison-Facey, 35, is now trying to come to terms with the fact that she will not be revived after being in hospital for weeks. In custody is Facey's 32-year-old husband Marlon, a chef who worked on one of the cruise lines that serve Jamaica. Allegations are that on June 21, an argument developed between the couple at their Oracabessa home, when the woman was chopped several times in the

Assistant Commissioner of Police in charge of Area Two Ealan Powell (Jamaica Observer photo)

head. She was in a coma for weeks following the incident. Facey, who fled the scene, later turned himself over to the police and was charged with attempted murder. But when Facey, who initially showed signs of improvement, died on July 22, the charges were changed to murder. It is said that the two have only been married for a year and that they have a five-year-old child together. This incident followed the murder of a civil servant who was killed by her spouse in May. Just last month, police constable Mario Dixon was sentenced to 16 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to manslaughter after shooting his commonlaw-wife, Jenese Burrell.

A s s i s t a n t Commissioner of Police in charge of Area Two Ealan Powell said that while the police cannot be physically manning homes, the security force has been working assiduously to try to reduce the high number of domestic-related murders in the parish. ACP Powell said that approximately 60 per cent of the murders committed in the parish since the start of the year are linked to domestic disputes. The Community and Safety branch of the Jamaica Constabulary Force has been hosting meetings in communities inviting persons to seek mediation when they have disputes, he explained. The police, Powell revealed, has also been engaging the residents through neighbourhood watches, as well as the Police Youth Club meetings. St Mary businessman Winston Cohen said that he believes the high number of domestic violence in the parish is linked to the high level of unemployment. While admitting that it is not only limited to the unemployed, he said that a number of disputes arise from financial problems. (Excerpt from Jamaica Observer)

TT’s Parliament


ack Warner was the early centre of attention at last Friday’s ceremonial opening of Parliament in Trinidad and Tobago as he took the oath of allegiance as a parliamentarian, five days after being re-elected in the Chaguanas West by-election. Warner made it clear to Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar that government should not expect automatic support from him on any piece of legislation and he would expose any vindictiveness which government undertakes against him and his Independent Liberal Party’s (ILP) local government election campaign. Warner, the ILP interim political leader, arrived at Parliament at 1.28 pm dressed in a green business suit. He was accompanied by wife Maureen who herself wore a bright green dress. He was embraced by Community Development Minister Winston Peters, “Independent” St Joseph MP Herbert Volney and Health Minister Dr Fuad Khan. Social Development Minister Dr Glenn Ramadharsingh gave him a half-hearted handshake while Moruga/Tableland MP Clifton De Coteau bowed to Warner. After taking his oath, Warner walked straight past PM PersadBissessar and opposition leader Dr Keith Rowley, without shaking their hands and took his seat next to Volney. In her subsequent remark to the House, Persad-Bissessar welcomed Warner back although she did not call

Chaguanas West MP Jack Warner and his wife Maureen, wore matching green clothing to reflect the colour of Warner’s ILP party, last Friday at the ceremonial opening of the new Parliamentary term. (TT Newsday photo)

him by name. She said Warner was no stranger and government expects “positive contributions and support from him.” Warner did not join other MPs for the customary reception in the Parliament’s lounge, opting instead to hold his own private reception at the nearby Hyatt Regency Hotel. Speaking with reporters after the opening, Warner said, “I feel at home. It was a bruising campaign. All of the government’s machinery and apparatus was against me. I emerged successful in their heartland, winning in 51 out of 51 polling stations, which is un-

precedented. If ever an MP deserves to return to the hallowed halls of this Parliament, it’s me,” he declared. On PersadBissessar’s comments, Warner said, “I am not convinced that the prime minister has freed herself from the crushes of the cabal. Therefore I do not want to make any comment on what she said or didn’t say at this point in time.” Persad-Bissessar later told reporters, “Mr Warner represents persons who elected him. It is the democracy of our country at work.” (Excerpt from TT Newsday)


feature | week ending August 8, 2013

Forbes Magazine to showcase TT tourism Global

insurer to expand study on Caribbean coral

Matthew Dickert (left), Forbes Magazine Project Assistant and Rosie Venn (centre), Forbes Magazine Feature Director interviews TT’s Minister of Tourism Stephen Cadiz, right, at his office. (TT Newsday photo)


o r l d - R e nowned Forbes Magazine recently sent executives to interview Trinidad and Tobago’s Tourism Minister Stephen Cadiz for insight into government’s plans for diversification and what this means to tourism in the country. According to a release from the tourism ministry, Rosie Venn of Forbes Magazine sought out Minister Cadiz’ view of the People’s Partnership government’s thrust for

economic diversification. Tourism in Trinidad and Tobago has been earmarked for expansion and the almost limitless potential for growth in Trinidad and also Tobago has caught the attention of the foreign press. The implications for a successful tourism product in Trinidad and Tobago are endless, and would forever change the face of the region, Cadiz opined. He said that the country’s fortunes have long

been tied to its wealth of fossil fuels. That lucrative industry coupled with TT’s successful manufacturing base and a flourishing tourism sector would spell economic prosperity for us, but also may signal the decline of competing nations in the region. Venn, is the Feature Director at Forbes Magazine. She was accompanied to Trinidad by Matthew Dickert, Project Assistant at Forbes. Both sat-down with Minister Cadiz at

his office and quizzed the minister for an hour on many issues relating to TT tourism both in local, regional and international contexts. Asked to comment about the interview, Cadiz told reporters that it went well and the nation can look forward to a poignant and insightful piece in Forbes Magazine in the near future that will bring more exposure to the beautiful twin island republic and its tourism product. (TT Newsday)

According to the Catlin Group Limited, coral reefs in the Caribbean and Atlantic, like elsewhere, are undergoing environmental stress (Jamaica Observer photo)


global specialty property insurer has announced that it is expanding its study of coral reefs with a new campaign in the Caribbean and Bermuda. Last Thursday, the Catlin Group Limited said based on the Catlin Seaview Survey, it will "significantly widen opportunities for ocean, coral and climate scientists to understand the changes occurring within the region". The group said the survey started in Belize and will move on to Mexico, Anguilla, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Guadeloupe, Turks and Caicos and the Bahamas in the coming months. It will also explore the coral reefs off Bermuda in September. "Coral reefs in the Caribbean and Atlantic, like elsewhere, are undergoing environmental stress; being highly sensitive to environmental change, corals are considered the 'canary in the coal mine' when it comes to impacts of climate change and ocean acidification," the group said in a statement. "Exploitation, pollution, warming waters and increased storms linked with climate change (have) caused the massive loss of corals across the Caribbean over the past 50 years," it continued.

The loss of coral reefs has long-term implications for Caribbean economies, given their dependence on reefs and other marine ecosystems for goods, services and economic welfare. According to the World Resources Institute, the value of shoreline protection provided by Caribbean reefs is between US$700 million and US$2.2 billion per year. Within the next 50 years, coral degradation and death could lead to annual losses totalling US$140 million to US$420 million, the institute said. "We are committed to understanding the future risks posed by climate change," said Stephen Catlin, chief executive of Catlin Group Limited. "The Caribbean was chosen to launch the global mission because it is at the front line of risk," said Richard Vevers, project director for the Catlin Seaview Survey. "Over the last 50 years, 80 per cent of the corals in many places in the Caribbean have disappeared because of coastal development and pollution," he added. "They now are also threatened by invasive species, climate change and ocean acidification, it's the perfect storm." (CMC)

21 Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival parade lights up Toronto feature

week ending August 8, 2013 |

friendly festival featured a performance by Raymond Ramnarine, the 2013 Soca Chutney Monarch King, and his band Dil-E-Nadan. Other popular chutney stars who performed included K.I with his band 3Veni, Drupatee, Kerwin du Bois, and Blaxx. This year’s Carnival season kicked off on July 9 with a public launch followed by an opening church service on July

Story and photos by Nadia Hussein


he Scotiabank C a r i b b e a n Carnival Toronto has once again proven itself a grand showcase of Caribbean music, cuisine, revelry, and arts that ended with a bang over the weekend. The three-week long celebrations came to a close in an action-packed four days. Two competitions led up to the Grand Parade, which was followed by a different type of festival. Last Thursday, there was the King and Queen Competition and the Allan Lamport Stadium was transformed into an outdoor theatrical stage where the ‘Kings’ and ‘Queens’ of the bands competed to be named the best of the best. ‘Carnival Nationz’ came out on top with both the ‘King’ and ‘Queen’ coming from their mas camp. The ‘King’ represented the theme of ‘The Reef’ well with a huge

The Grand Parade brought the sights and sounds of the Caribbean to Lakeshore Boulevard East

crab creation on his deep blue float which earned him the nickname ‘King Crab’. The ‘Queen’ was eye-catching as she pulled a sparkling

This mother and daughter duo played mas together. They posed in front of a TTC bus because the Toronto Revellers partnered with the city’s public transit system

These members of the Toronto Revellers were pretty in pink

pink, purple, blue, and green float. The group surprised the crowd by bringing out soca and calypso singer, Superblue. One night later, the same venue came alive with the sound of the steelpan during the Pan Alive competition featuring members of the Ontario Steelpan Association (OSA).The event highlighted the talent of pannists ranging in age from early teens to adults. At the end of the night, Pan Fantasy walked away with the trophy and the $3, 000 (CDN) prize for the second year in a row. One member of the group stated, “I think our band gave it the best we could. We threw in a few antics (and) gave a high-energy performance (that) Pan Fantasy always gives. The crowd responded well.” Second place went to Afropan while Panmasters claimed third place. By Saturday, everyone was ready for the road. The Grand Parade, the marquee event of the festival season, took over Toronto for the 46th year on August 3. Masqueraders danced their way down Lakeshore BoulevardWest to the pulsating rhythms of calypso, soca, reggae, chutney, steelpan and brass bands. Organizers estimated that 900, 000 people came out to take in the colourful and striking costumes during the largest cultural festival of its kind in North America. Patrons got their fill of Caribbean food and

drinks such as patties, jerk chicken, coconut water, and sugar cane juice throughout the sunny day. Masquerders faced a judging area before proceeding onto the route. Louis Saldenah Mas-K Club with their theme Heaven & Earth took the title of Band of the Year. The runner-up was Carnival Nationz and the third spot belongs to the Toronto Revellers. There was also a Carnival concert with performances from big names such as Destra, Alison Hinds, K.I, and Orlando Octave. Another feature of parade day was a midway with rides and games that kept the kids busy. The Carnival vibes

This parade participant didn’t forget to represent her Caribbean heritage with a TT flag

continued the day after the parade at a new event. ‘Hotta Than Ah Chulawas,’ the name of a chutney music festival was held at The Italian Gardens. The family-

14. Naturally, the events will officially end with a closing church service at St. James Cathedral on August 11 beginning at 4:30 p.m.


feature | week ending August 8, 2013

El Dorado Rum captures author’s attention American author Randy White (centre) handing over a copy of one of his books to Demerara Distillers Limited International Marketing Manager Tamsia Clement in the presence of El Dorado Rum representative Ian Lye


emerara Distillers Limited (DDL) award winning El Dorado rums have spiked the interest of well-known bestselling American author Randy White, who has travelled to Guyana to gain insight as to how El Dorado rums are made and to understand the history of various rums produced by the company. He was high in praise of the rum, relating that it captured his interest when he tasted it on one of his travels. “After, I began reading about El Dorado, it’s not just one of the best rums in the American’s; it’s one of the finest rums in the world from this small country…I found the success and

Trinidad’s zoo anxiously awaits arrival of a baby giraffe

O brilliance of this product quite interesting,” he stated. During his four day visit, he will also examine what the country has to offer as an eco-tourism destination. If his visit to the country further captures his interest, White will return to spend time in Guyana and write about it in an adventure travel magazine he edits. “I’ve only been here for four hours and I’m already falling in love with the people and the country, it’s an extraordinary country,” he related. This is his first trip to Guyana, White said, noting that he will visit places such as Georgetown, Baganara, Bartica and Parika.

fficials at the Emperor Valley Zoo, Port-ofSpain, Trinidad, over the weekend said that a scheduled August 7 arrival of the baby Giraffe may have to be postponed because the animal may not be fit for travel. Gupte Lutchmedial, President of the Zoological Society told TT media on Saturday, “A date has not been confirmed yet. They are having difficulty with conditioning the giraffe to travel.” The Giraffe will be flown in from a breeding facility in Texas, USA, to Trinidad. This baby giraffe is less than a year old. It is 8 ft, 6 inches and it will take approximately 14 to 16 days for the animal to travel. Currently, officials from the Texas

facility are trying to condition the giraffe to operate under travelling conditions, but are receiving great difficulty. Until the animal is properly trained to travel, the Emperor Valley Zoo would not be receiving its first giraffe. While the zoo is awaiting its newest addition, it is feverishly preparing for the giraffe. According to Lutchmedial, giraffes on average eat ten percent of its weight in food. However, because it eats almost all types of green plants, they are well stocked with food. The zoo has prepared a chill room to store the giraffe’s food over night. These preparations are only part of the zoo’s expansions. Currently the zoo is building five new enclosures for its

African exhibit. It cost TT$13 million to build and is scheduled to be completed in 60 days. “Africa has some of the most interesting animals in the world. One quarter of the zoo would be dedicated to African animals,” he said. The African exhibit will have special African music, art exhibits, and a reception area for children parties. Lutchmedial reported the zoo has even received requests to have weddings there. He hopes the new African exhibit will be a big attraction to the zoo. Other improvements, Lutchmedial said, the zoo is planning to have includes a zip line built into the zoo and a water park with water slides and water sports. (TT Newsday)

Star of the Week

Alicia Ayube


eet the lovely Alicia Ayube born on August 17, 1983 in Guyana. A legal assistant, Alicia studied B.A. Sociology at York University. Yet while managing a full time legal position, Alicia created a hair and makeup team known as Eye Kandii, which provides hair design and makeup artistry for every event/occasion. She has provided these services for several popular events including the WI Canadian Bridal Expo, Miss West Indian Canadian Pageant, and OHM Bridal show. For Alicia, “The best part of doing hair and makeup is meeting new people every day”, as she believes, “making someone feel extra special and confident really makes it all worth the while.” In her spare time, she enjoys bike riding and spending “good times with family and friends”. She has high hopes of travelling and is firm on “enjoying the little things in life”. A word of advice from Alicia: “Keeping a balanced life is essential to our generation. Always focus on studying to find a career you are good at, but don't ignore the voice of passion. Passion often brings talent to light.”



week ending August 8, 2013 |

Historic 1823 Monument unveiled in Guyana T he long awaited 1823 Slave Revolt monument in Georgetown, Guyana, was on Monday evening unveiled by President Donald Ramotar at a ceremony that featured a series of pan African rituals and dances. The monument, located along the Kitty sea wall, Carifesta Avenue, opposite the Guyana Defence Force, was designed by Guyanese sculptor Ivor Thom. Delivering the feature address at the event, President Ramotar underscored the important role the 1823 Demerara Uprising played in securing the freedom of African slaves. As such, he said that he was deeply moved to be part of the unveiling of the monument and noted its significance in honouring the heroes of the 1823 Revolt. “In unveiling this monument, we are formalising the honour that we have kept in our hearts and as a united people, acknowledging an epic contribution of our people’s quest for justice, dignify and liberty…may this monument inspire all Guyanese to join hands in partnership for peace, progress and prosperity,” Ramotar urged. Meanwhile, Culture Minister Dr Frank Anthony said that the monument is an important part of Guyana’s history, and if left forgotten, the nation will be robbed of a significant legacy of the struggles of their ancestors. He explained that after the government decided to build the monument, his ministry established a site Selection Committee and 10 villages were identified on East Coast Demerara and five places in Georgetown, including the Parade Ground and the current location of the monument.

Current site

He pointed out that after examining the various possible sites, the committee identified the current site as the best and it was endorsed by the ministry, which proceeded with preparations

President Donald Ramotar cuts the ribbon to unveil the 1823 Slave Revolt Monument. He is assisted by students from Kuru Kuru Training College. Looking on are Culture Minister Dr Frank Anthony, Public Works Minister Robeson Benn, junior Finance Minister Juan Edghill, Health Minister Dr Bheri Ramsaran and others

to build the monument. After work began on the site and was far advanced, a request was received to change the site; however, the minister explained that, “we were not able to accommodate that belated request and we regret the controversies that erupted around the site.” He disclosed too that more than 30 plantations were involved in the uprising and the culture ministry is currently working with historians to identify many of these plantations. “It’s our intention to create what we might call a battle trail on the East Coast and Georgetown, so that we can put up markers so people can go and visit these sites and have a better perspective and appreciation of the scope

Students of the National Dance Company entertain the gathering at the unveiling of the 1823 Slave Revolt Monument

and magnitude of the 1823 Uprising,” the minister promised. He said the monument now stands as a testimony of resistance against slavery and colonialism.

Depicting people

Sculptor Ivor Thom said when tasked with the responsibility of

of African Descent, the government undertook a number of activities, among them was the construction of the 1823 Monument. The project was advertised through an open tender and was won by Thom. The project costs an estimated Gy$26 million. (Excerpt from Guyana Times)

Renowned Guyanese artist Ivor Thom - sharing experiences in his art


uyanese Ian Ivor Thom is a celebrated artist who enjoys creating beautiful art inspired by historical events and personal ex-

sculpting the monument, he consulted the Internet for information on the rebellion, after which he decided to design three pieces depicting people. One of the pieces portrays a woman moving forward with a cutlass in one hand, with the other hand folded, and her mouth opened, imploring others to join her. The other is a man moving forward with a cutlass, cross and broken chain. “I thought I would incorporate rebellion, revolution and religion together.” He thanked students from the Sophia Special School and the Kuru Kuru Training College for working with him on the monument. In 2011, to mark the United Nation’s International Year of people

was her way of telling me that whatever I do is valuable and I shouldn’t 'Mrs Atlas'

periences. Thom was born, and grew up, in Victoria village on the East Coast Demerara. In a recent interview, he recalled that since childhood he developed a passion for art and the value of it taught by his mother. “One thing I remember as a child is that whenever I draw something, I would discard of them; but my mother would pick them up and put them away. As I got older I realised that what my mother did

just discard of my work,” Thom reminisced. Thom also remembered that while working on a Madhia/Annai road project in the 1970s chopping trees down–he was about 14 years old at that time–he came across a piece of wood and was moved to carve a face on it. “At that time, to me it was a masterpiece, but looking back it seems like nothing at all. However, when I did it, a lot of people were fascinated with it, and that encouraged me to develop as an artist. From then on I started working with clay and other art medium. What

also motivated me to practice my art is experiencing appreciation by others for my art work. As a member of the National Service, I was at the Papaya Centre, and former President Burnham was visiting. We wanted to get him a gift but we couldn’t travel out. Everyone encouraged me to do something and so I volunteered to carve a piece for him. Seeing how people appreciated my art really motivated me to keep on practicing and to develop myself as an artist,” reflected Thom. This motivated Thom to enrol at the Burrowes School of Art.

Life in Canada

In 1979 he graduated and went to Cuba to continue art study, and spent four years there. When he returned, Thom went back to the National Service where he served until 1990. He then migrated to Canada and then to the U.S., all the while continuing to create artistic pieces. In Canada, Thom developed profoundly as an

Guyanese artist Ian Ivor Thom

artist. He learnt the lostwax casting technique. A method used to cast metal. Thom also worked in many art foundries and was able to do so in every section of a foundry, after becoming very skilled in his area of art. Thom is famously known for his 1988 Damon monument sculpture in Essequibo. The next year he was awarded the Medal of Service for his contribution to art in Guyana. He

was also given numerous medals and certificates for his work locally and internationally. Speaking on what inspires him, Thom disclosed, “Something within me compels me. Sometimes I may have an experience, whether good or bad, and I want to share it. I found that if I can’t really share this in words I do so in art. I post my experiences either in drawing or sculpture. My art is conceptualised by

my experiences, a story, or something that has influenced me. I’m inspired by life.” For Thom, art makes him feel alive, and so he dances and sings while he is creating his pieces. He pointed out that he is most comfortable when into his art, and even forgets to eat sometimes. His sculptures are full of life and reflect his deepest thoughts. (Excerpt from Guyana Times Sunday Magazine)


feature | week ending August 8, 2013

Organiser pulls off Bumper year for another grand‘Chutney Bajan Crop Over In De Park’ show


Story and photo by Ravendra Madholall


large number of Caribbean chutney artistes produced an entertaining stage presentation on Sunday at Bella Garden, Toronto where the fifth annual ‘Chutney In De Park’ event took place. The family-oriented day activity was once again staged under the auspices of the Crystal Vibes promotions and its founder, Vick Jagmohan, was more than delighted to have the chutney singing sensations in Toronto to provide such entertainment for the Canadianbased Caribbean people. Veteran chutney singer Guyanese Terry Gajraj, Trinidadian Ricky Jai and rising star Ravi ‘B’ were among those who blazed the stage along with several other dancers and singers. The riveting action commenced shortly after noon and by the evening, hundreds had crowded the stage area to get a glimpse of the performances. “I must say thanks to the artists for coming to Toronto and (giving the people what they deserved),” Jagmohan said, adding that, “I know it’s Caribana Sunday and with the presence of

Chutney singing sensations Terry Gajraj and Ricky Jai on stage entertaining the large gathering

these reputable singers here, I was confident we at Crystal Vibes (would have seen) another huge turnout because I know the Trinidadians and Guyanese in Canada and (those who are) visiting love their chutney vibes.” He was also thankful to the sponsors for their support over the years, which he said not only demonstrates their love for chutney but the ability of the show to promote unity among the Guyanese and Trinidadians that live in Canada. “We just can’t forget

the sponsors, without them nothing is possible so I am very thankful to them for keeping the people coming to such a wonderful outdoor activity especially bringing out their families and children,” Jagmohan indicated. Meanwhile, this newspaper also caught up with Ravi ‘B’, who said that he was very delighted to be in Toronto again for another ‘Chutney In De Park’ show. “I love my chutney and I know my fellow Trinidadians and Guyanese love it too so

coming to Toronto again and performing for them certainly gives me great pleasure,” the singer stated, adding that, “I will definitely come back next year.” The day’s event included a car show, kids Carnival fun, live tassa by Toronto’s own, duck curry competition and a special tribute to legendary singers Kanchan, Sundar Popo and Sonny Mann. The Footsteps Dance Academy’s dance group also took part among other activities, much to the delight of the fans.

tephen Lashley, the Barbados Minister of Culture, wants to see more interaction between TT and Barbados when it comes to Carnival festivities. Speaking to reporters at a news conference to welcome foreign media to the annual Crop Over celebrations in Barbados, Lashley said there was a lot of room for collaboration over the respective festivals. “I would like to see more of an inter-exchange and interaction between the two countries. I think that has been happening, but it would be great to have more. I think Barbadians welcome our Trinidadian brothers and sisters, and by extension I think we ought to go to Trinidad and have our performers perform there as well,” he said, drawing reference to the Junior Monarch exchange programme that already takes place between the two countries. The TT presence was certainly evident during the Crop Over. From soca artistes to masqueraders waving the

Elderly Caribbean nationals hit hard by depression–study finds

C Guyana-born U.S-based artiste prepares for new single release E

nter the world of Prakz and there is no doubt that you will understand–the passion of the man behind his music. Born in Guyana, Sankar Singh, better known as Prakz, entertains and thrills crowds in the United States, London, Holland, Suriname, Guyana and Canada. One of the most energetic “ragga techno” musicians around today, Prakz has made the world sway to his heart driven beats. He has composed back to back chartbusters ever since his solo album debut in 2005 with the super hit “Chapter 1”, and has seen massive success across the United States, Europe, Canada, and the West Indies. Prakz’s first album gave us a glimpse of the star that was born. With top foot stomping singles

Sankar Singh, better known as Prakz, was born is Guyana

such as “Move Yuh Feet” and “Under Water”, the album scaled the summit of rankings and turned Prakz into an overnight international musical icon across countries. As they say “nothing succeeds like success”, Prakz followed up with two hit singles, “Sexy Body” and “You Don’t Know”. His hit single “You Don’t Know” is scaling the top of charts in dance floors across multiple countries, and has

inspired Prakz to come up with an upcoming album just for his fans on the dance floor. Prakz has a long list of achievements that dots his soaring music career. He was nominated for the Guyana Music Awards for “Best Artist” and “Album of the Year” in 2007 and 2008. From his humble Guyanese roots to being a runaway musical success, the journey hasn’t been exactly a ‘cake-

walk’ for Prakz. He always considered music his passion, but not at the cost of integrity and character building that good education provides. This has helped him become one the few highly educated and qualified individuals who are so successful in the music world today. In addition to him being such a successful music star, he is also educationally qualified as an accountant that graduated from Queens College, NYC. The key to his success in music is attributed to great talent and an amazing drive to connect with his audience. He has been, and will continue to come out with albums that touch the hearts of his fans world over. And if you ask Prakz how or why he does it, he simply replies, “Music is love that spreads happiness to people”

red, black and white, the twin-island presence was everywhere. In the days leading up to the Crop Over culmination, Trinidadian promoters staged some of their popular fetes on the island. Beach House Entertainment, in collaboration with the band Baje International, put on the first Beach House Barbados in Bathsheba last Thursday. Scorch staged a boat ride aboard the Jolly Roger and a breakfast party the next morning, while Julius Caesar Entertainment held its popular Ambush party. On Sunday night, TT acts dominated the Cohobblopot show, an annual concert celebrating the best in Bajan and regional talent. Patrice Roberts, Denise “Saucy Wow” Belfon, David Rudder and Bunji Garlin, Fay Ann Lyons and the Asylum Band, in their first ever Cohobblopot performance, hyped up the mostly Bajan crowd with their collective hits. Earlier in the week, Machel Montano and Destra Garcia were among those who performed at various shows.

aribbean nationals may know how to party but major depression is a serious public health problem among older Caribbean adults, according to a new study. New research by a Michigan State University (MSU) scholar on nearly 2000 people, aged 50 and older, found that whites and blacks of Caribbean descent experience much higher rates of major depression than African-Americans. Amanda Toler Woodward, lead investigator on the study and MSU associate professor of social work, said the findings, taken as a whole, suggest major depression among older Caribbean people is worse than many believe and has serious implications as the massive baby boomer generation ages. The study examined rates of major depression among three ethnic groups–whites, AfricanAmericans and black Caribbeans–making it the first comprehensive examination of major depression among older blacks. Specifically, the researchers found about

23 per cent of older black Caribbean immigrants experienced major depression during their lifetime, and 15 per cent experienced major depressive symptoms in the previous 12 months. Older black men of Caribbean descent reported much higher rates of major depression than older black women of Caribbean descent. This runs counter to the other ethnic groups–whites and African-Americans– which saw women report higher rates of major depression. While the study did not measure why black Caribbean nationals had significantly higher rates of major depression than African-Americans, Woodward said it may have to do with negative experiences related to immigration such as being separated from family and friends and adapting to U.S. culture. “This data shows that black Caribbeans and African-Americans are not as similar as one may think, and when we’re thinking about diagnoses and treatment, we shouldn’t lump them together,” Woodward said.

Bollywood week ending August 8, 2013



‘Audiences find me most suitable Deepika kisses Shah Rukh daily! for action’ – John Abraham


ven though actor-producer John Abraham personally likes doing films in different genres, he strongly believes audiences find him most suitable in the action space.

"Back home, I'm called 'action' Abraham. I love that phrase audiences have coined for me. The rom-com space didn't work for me. I worked really hard in ‘Jhoota Hi Sahi’, but it didn't work because audiences mostly perceive me in the action space," John told reporters. "I also enjoy comedy and that's why I'm doing ‘Welcome Back’ and ‘Dostana 2’. But, I'm also doing an action film with director Nishikanth of ‘Force’ again and it will be ten times more powerful than our last film. I try to do different cinema because we are commercial actors at the end of the day," he said. John says he doesn't hesitate to take risks. "I guess I'm the only actor who takes risk. I mean I do a ‘Kabul Express’ in Afghanistan or I do a ‘Madras Café’ or I do a ‘No Smoking’, which nobody understood, but I enjoy that space and if some needs to take risks then it might as well be John Abraham. I'm happy about it," he added. (TOI)


t an event to promote their upcoming film ‘Chennai Express’, actress Deepika said she kisses the Bollywood star, Shah Rukh Khan everyday! Now before you go reading too much into it, SRK is happily married and is fond of his leading lady, the beautiful Miss Padukone. Both Deepika and SRK's chemistry has been evident, first in ‘Om Shanti Om’ and now in Rohit Shetty's ‘Chennai Express’. While they make a cute onscreen couple, what did Deepika really mean by this statement? She further added

Shah Rukh plans to buy football league

‘I eat cheese noodles to get over heartbreaks’ - Swara Bhaskar


n a recent interview on life and love, actress Swara Bhaskar was asked about her first crush and how does she deal with heartbreaks. In response, Bhaskar revealed that she had her first crush at the age of six. “Strangely from that time till I was sixteen, whoever I fell for, they never liked me back,” she stated. However, she went on to add, “After that, things became better and now it is pretty wonderful on the love front. As far heartbreaks are concerned, I eat a lot of instant noodles with dollops of

A cheese. It is odd but it is really effective in getting over boys.” (TOI)

‘Dad was passionate about donating eyes’ - Soha Ali Khan


he entire Pataudi family had pledged to donate their cornea several years ago. Soha Ali Khan explained that, "all this is only because of my father. He was very passionate about it and that was the impetus for us. He donated his cornea and we were encouraged to do

the same. I must have been around 1718 years old when we did it. This is a cause he had been associated with for many decades. We used to joke with him because he had only one good eye. We would ask him which one of his eyes he would donate to science." In fact, so firm is the family's belief in the cause that Soha says all she remembers is the pride she felt when her father's eye was taken post his demise. "We were very proud of his decision. My mother was in-charge of this. She spoke to the right doctors and it was done very professionally. There was no question of it not being done. And I don't remember feeling any sense of intrusiveness. I understand the sentiments of people around who are grieving, but think of the person whose life you will change with your eyes." (TOI)

Kiran and Aamir pledge to donate their organs


nspired by their latest production ‘Ship of Theseus,’ Kiran Rao and Aamir Khan have both agreed to donate their organs. Kiran said that it was something she always thought of doing but the film led her to make the decision. “I will donate everything possible to donate, which is typically your eyes, kidneys, liver, heart and even

your lungs. Once you are clinically dead, none of the organs are of any use to you anyways, so as against just getting burnt or getting buried,

you can help several people,” Kiran said is a recent interview. Her husband, Aamir said “Kiran and I have discussed it, but we never discussed it seriously till she saw ‘Ship of Theseus’. This time, we spoke about it in a concrete manner and realised that it was so true that we could help alter the lives of others without harming ourselves in anyway.” (TOI)

that she can only give him love and happiness. (TOI)

fter the Kolkata Knight Riders, Bollywood superstar Shah Rukh Khan now plans to move into

the more popular football space. He is planning to bid for the Kolkata franchise of the new league promoted by All India Football Federation (AIFF) and IMG-Reliance. Shah Rukh said he was interested in buying stakes in the successful Goan I-League club Dempo but now with a new franchise-based league coming up he has changed his mind. "Earlier I was planning to buy stakes in Dempo and now with the new franchise-based league coming up, I will have a look at it. I will love to own a franchise," Shah Rukh was quoted as saying by a TV channel. Asked which city he would buy, Shah Rukh said: "I will love to have the Kolkata football club." Eight clubs, 176 players, 72 overseas stars and 10 weeks of packed action-that is how the AIFF's commercial partner IMG-Reliance plans to glamourise Indian football early next year. (TOI)

‘My sons are untouched by my fame’ - Madhuri Dixit


adhuri Dixit's fame as a popular Bollywood actress hasn't cast its shadow on her sons, Arin and Raayan, who she says are unaffected by their mother's stardom. The 46-year-old, who is raising both her children in Mumbai with her doctor husband Shriram Madhav Nene, likes it that her children get excited to see her on TV. "I have no idea if they understand it and I like it that way. I want them to be as innocent as possible. Even today they come running to me and say that mom you are on TV. My little one comes to me and says, 'really are you that famous'. But they are untouched by it and that's the way I like it," said Madhuri. (TOI)

Hrithik Roshan’s sister Sunaina gets emotional


t the trailer launch of 'Krrish 3', Rakesh Roshan went on to say that there are two superheroes in his house-son Hrithik and daughter Sunaina, who was suffering from cancer. Hrithik got teary eyed speaking about the illness and hugged his father at the event. Hrithik was suffering from Subdural Hematoma caused in the brain as a result of the head injury. He successfully underwent a brain surgery to remove a two-monthold clot at Hinduja Healthcare Surgical in Khar last month. The actor was performing stunts for his film 'Bang Bang' two months ago and suffered an injury on his head. Sunaina was present during the trailer launch and got quite emotional while talking about her younger broth-

er. "It is his small things. Gestures that he does like a hug, smile that makes me happy. Seeing him happy I am happy," she said. While Hrithik said, it's his sister's smile that adds spark to his life. (TOI)


hollywood | week ending August 8, 2013

Mark Wahlberg warns Bieber ‘Call me crazy, but I love my husband’- Sarah Jessica Parker M ark Wahlberg has warned Justin Bieber to "stop smoking weed" and focus on his career. He has also cautioned the Canadian singer not to “be so naughty.” The singer turned actor, who was jailed for assault as a teenager, during a webchat with The Sun newspaper, joked: "Justin are you listening? Don't be so naughty, yeah? Be a nice boy, pull your trousers up, make your mum proud, and stop smoking weed, you little b***h." On a more serious note, Mark, 45, added: "He's a teenager living in a different day and age. I was in prison before I got a record out and I don't think he's been to prison. He's a


nice enough kid and you're going to be a teenager. But if you're being a teen in the spotlight you're going to be criticised for it.” He noted too that, “this career can be short lived-you might as well be the best you can while you're doing it." Mark, who rose to fame as the leader of pop group Marky Mark and the Funky Bunch, is also

planning to work with the 19-year-old heartthrob on a film and may even get behind the mic again for the soundtrack. He said: "Justin and I were talking about doing a movie, which could still happen. We have a great script which could be a vehicle for him to make his debut in movies, then maybe we could do something for the soundtrack." (TOI)

Kim K in no rush to marry Kanye West


im Kardashian is in no rush to the tie the knot with boyfriend Kanye West, it has been re-

vealed. A friend of the family has revealed that the 36-year-old rapper asked Kardashian to get married straight after the birth of their daughter, North West. The Source added that the 32-yearreality TV queen has been adamant that it is bad luck to be married in 2013, as she considers 13 to be unlucky, the Daily Star reported. Kardashian wants to wait till the next year and says that January 1 would be the earliest date possible. (TOI)

‘Skyfall’ star Ben Whishaw comes out as gay and married


en Whishaw, who played the role of Q in the James Bond film ‘Skyfall’, has revealed that he is gay and has been married to his partner, Aussie musician Mark Bradshaw,

for a year now. According to a statement obtained by a UK publication, the Brit star's rep confirmed the news, insisting that the 32-year-old actor never hid his sexuality, but chose to remain mum about his personal life like many other actors, the Huffington Post reported. The spokesman also revealed that Whishaw and Bradshaw had entered into a civil partnership in August 2012. The rep insisted that the duo were proud to tie the knot and is very happy. The couple met on the set of their 2009 movie 'Bright Star'. (TOI)

Lindsay Lohan makes fun of Kristen Stewart


indsay Lohan cracked jokes about fellow actress Kristen Stewart during her guest host episode for ‘Chelsea Lately’. The 27-year-old actress-who left rehab last week after a 90-day courtordered stint-is seen mocking the ‘Twilight’ actress in a preview clip for her gig guest hosting chat show ‘Chelsea Lately.’ Discussing a recent incident in which the famously glum-looking star yelled at a photographer, Lindsay scoffed: "I'm just excited that Kristen Stewart, you know, finally showed some emotion." When the other hosts appear shocked, Lindsay backtracks, saying: "No, I really do love her. She's awesome. I'm a Kristen Stewart fan." However, the ‘Mean Girls’ star

arah Jessica Parker, who has always remained mum about her personal life, has finally opened up about her married life to fellow actor Matthew Broderick, insisting that people can call her mad, but she is in love with her husband. In the September 2013 issue of Harper's Bazaar, the actress confessed that she couldn't be happier with the life that she's created with Broderick, out of the spotlight, US magazine reported. The blonde beauty insisted that she loves her life with her husband of 16 years and both of them are devoted to their family. The 'Sex and the City' star said that she also loves the fact that Broderick is the father of her children, adding that it's because of him that there's this whole other world that she loves.

The couple, who wed in May 1997, has three children together. (TOI)

Bruce Willis claims second marriage made him better family man


ruce Willis has admitted that his second marriage with Emma Heming has taught him to be a better husband and father. The 58-year-old actor said that he feels fortunate to be able to bring his family along when he is traveling, the Daily Express reported. The action hero, who was previously married to actress Demi Moore, asserted that it would be unbearable for anyone to work with him if his family does not accompany him, as he would just be moaning about that. The ‘Die Hard’ star added that there's nothing more important than family and friends and they should be treated well. (TOI)

Lea Michele wants perfect tribute for Cory Monteith


ctress Lea Michele is reportedly working closely with the producers of TV musical comedy-drama series "Glee" on Cory Monteith's tribute episode. The 26-year-old wants to ensure that the episode dedicated to her exboyfriend is perfect. "The producers are still going back and forth on what they want to do and

clearing music for his tribute," quoted a source as saying. "The meetings are lengthy and Lea is a part of them to make sure everything is just right. It's still touch and go for all involved. Tears can and will happen. When they start filming the episode, everyone is going to be a mess. After they film that episode, they are going to go on a break to recharge," added the source. Monteith passed away July 13 in his room at Fairmont Pacific Rim Hotel in Vancouver. He died due to an overdose of a mix of alcohol and heroin. He was 31. The actor battled drug addiction throughout his teens and first entered rehab at the age of 19. His character, Finn Hudson, will be written off the show in the third episode of the upcoming fifth season, which will deal with drug addiction. (TOI)

‘I never watch my own films’ - Johnny Depp


then takes another pop at the 23-yearold actress, joking about the infamous paparazzi shots of her kissing ‘Snow White and the Huntsman’ director Rupert Sanders, which ended both his marriage and her relationship with Robert Pattinson when it was made public. (TOI)

ohnny Depp has revealed that he doesn't bother watching his own movies, but regrets missing out on a lot of his pals' hard work. The ‘Lone Ranger’ star told the Independent that he made a choice a long time ago, that he was better off not watching his films, insisting that it would just harm him. The actor said that he would rather stay as ignorant as possible about the result of his work, because once he is done playing that character, it's not his business anymore. (TOI)



week ending August 8, 2013 |

Caribbean performers help wrap up TD Irie Music Festival in Toronto Story

and photo by


Nadia Hussein

he TD Irie Music Festival wrapped up over the weekend in Toronto. The festival, which was spread out over three weekends and three cities, came to the downtown core for its big finish from August 2-5. Nathan Phillips Square was filled with reggae, gospel, and urban artists along with dance performances and visual art. “IRIE Fest is a fun, free, family friendly showcase of the best in reggae and world music, dance, great food and other artistic endeavours,”

said Phil Vassell, co-founder and artistic director. “That is what Irie Music Festival has always been about.” Kerwin Du Bois of “Bacchanalist” fame was the headline performer last Friday, followed by Jamaican singer Richie Stephens on Saturday, and dancehall and reggae singer ‘Half Pint’ on Sunday. Meanwhile, on Monday, the closing act was Toronto-based songwriter Shi Wisdom. A Dance Immersion Summer Showcase exposed the Sunday crowd to different dance styles which proved very entertaining. Enthusiastic audience members especially cheered for the

youth who participated. The Jamaican-born Vassell co-founded the Irie Fest 10 years ago. The event provides an opportunity to promote a greater understanding between the diverse cultures and traditions of Toronto. “This year, we’ve consolidated our downtown Toronto festivities at the newly revamped and renovated Nathan Phillips Square, and branched out to include Peel and Durham regions and better connect with the culturally diverse populations in those communities as well,” he stated. The festival’s first weekend

A performance that was part of the Dance Immersion Summer Showcase at the TD Irie Music Festival in Toronto over the weekend

was July 14-15 at Mississauga Celebration Square with soca star Bunji Garlin and reggae singer Etana. Then, the celebrations expanded to

Oshawa’s Memorial Park for the first time on July 20-21 featuring reggae fusion artist Wayne Wonder before its conclusion.

Caribbean’s Emancipation celebrations in pictures

Hundreds of Guyanese converged at the National Park, Georgetown as the African Cultural and Development Association (ACDA) hosted a celebration to mark the 175th anniversary of emancipation in Guyana (Carl Croker photo)

Parade participants could not help but look at this interesting character during the Kambule street procession in Trinidad (TT Newsday photo)

Children and other persons enjoying the all-night Emancipation Vigil, held at the Seville Heritage Park, in St. Ann, Jamaica on July 31 into August 1 (JIS photo)

New Amsterdam honours outstanding Guyanese


he late former First Lady of Guyana Viola Burnham was among a list of 250 persons of African ancestry who were honoured by the Council of Friends of New Amsterdam (COFONA) for their contribution to New Amsterdam and Guyana. COFONA held its awards and recognition ceremony on Sunday at the Berbice High School auditorium. It was part of the group’s activities to commemorate the 250th anniversary of the Berbice Slave Rebellion and the 175th anniversary of emancipation. The late Mrs Burnham, along with television station and hotel owner Rockcliff Christie and civil engineer/contractor Courtney Benn were recognised as business persons and entrepreneurs of New Amsterdam. Persons were selected under 13 categories, including

Some of the honorees pose with their awards

community leaders, uniform service, educators, writers, and trade unionists. COFONA also honoured persons in the fields of music, dance, culture, politics, law, medicine, religion and sport. In the category of community leaders, former radio personality James Sidney and former Deputy Mayor Hyacinth James were honoured. Prisons Director Dale Erskine was among sev-

eral recognised for outstanding uniformed service. The list of educators included head of Stanford University Dr Ewarth Thomas, Joyce Thomas, and former Regional Educational Officer Catharine Archer. Veteran broadcaster Ron Robinson headed the list of four journalists recognised; the others are Guyana Times’ Andrew Carmichael, Guyana Chronicle’s Juene VanKeric and Kaieteur News’ Samuel Whyte.

Among the writers honoured by COFONA was Edgar Mittelholzer, while Guyana Teachers’ Union President Colin Bynoe and former Chief Labour Officer Norman Semple were honoured as outstanding trade unionists. Head of the Presidential Secretariat Dr Roger Luncheon and former Finance Minister Carl Greenidge headed the list of politicians. That list also included Nigel Hughes. Several persons who made their

names both at home and abroad were also acknowledged for their sterling contributions to the legal profession. Among them are JOF Haynes, Michael Baird, the late Rupert Trim, Claudette La Bennett, Kim Kyte-John, and Ian Chang. Dr Royston Anderson and Dr John Austin along with National Psychiatric Hospital administrator Leila ClarkDaniels and Dr Carl Niamatali received awards for their contributions in the field of medicine. Reverend John Smith, who was credited with fomenting the 1823 Demerara Slave Revolt, was honoured as an outstanding religious leader. In the field of music, dance and culture, Edith Peters, Ivlaw “Brooks” James Leon Saul and Shondel were some of the honorees, while former West Indies open-

ing batsman Clayton Lambert headed the list of sport personalities. Also recognised for their sterling contribution towards the development of sport were Desiree Lancaster (table tennis); Jeff Roberts (boxing); Carl Moore (cricket); Roger Alphonso (football); and Sherwin and Petra Ford. COFONA President Dr Leonard Lewis said the organisation attempted to give recognition to some individuals of African heritage who would have excelled since 1763. Meanwhile, New Amsterdam’s Mayor Claude Henry, who was also recognised as one of the more influential mayors along with Errol Alphonso, noted that the process to select the awardees started three years ago and involved both residents of New Amsterdam who currently live overseas and those at home.(Guyana Times)


feature | week ending August 8, 2013

LimacolCPL cricket fever roasts the Caribbean

Guyana Amazon Warriors captain Ramnaresh Sarwan presents the Limacol Super Cool Fan cheque to Justin Yaw at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence last Friday evening as the Guyana Amazon Warriors defeated the Jamaican Tallawahs by eight wickets (Guyana Times photo)

Barbadians in full support of the Barbados Tridents during the match against Trinidad and Tobago’s Red Steel at the Kensington Oval in Barbados on Saturday. (CPL photo)

The celebratory spirit being expressed in all forms . (CPL photo)

Most of the matches have been attracting sold out crowds across the Caribbean (CPL photo)

Guyana flags were waved in all sizes at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence, on July 31, August 2 and August 4 when the LimacolCPL matches were staged there. (CPL photo)

Part of the action at the packed stadium in Guyana (CPL photo)

St Lucia Zouks captain Darren Sammy hands over the Limacol Super Cool Fan cheque to the winner on Sunday evening after Sammy’s team won their match against the Guyana Amazon Warriors at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence. (CPL photo)

Kensington Oval in Barbados alive with the cricket fever (CPL photo)



week ending August 8, 2013 |

Limacol rewards players Barbados Rising Stars and fans in Limacol CPL shine in Canada – sponsor to give away over US$14,000 in prize money


imacol, the C a r i b b e a n Premier League’s title sponsor and owner of the Guyana Amazon Warriors, has announced two competitions to enhance match experiences for both the players and the fans. The Limacol Super Six award of US$500 will go to the player in each match whose six goes the longest distance while the Limacol Cool Fan prize of US$100 will go to the fan at each match who is the most creative and outrageous in showing his/her support for their team and the Limacol brand. The best Limacol Cool Fan, one for each of the 19 game days, will be identified during the match and the prize awarded at the conclusion of each game. Limacol Marketing Manager Trevor Bassoo hopes the Limacol Cool Fan prize will “encourage the continuity of the love West Indian cricket fans have for demonstrating their support for

Kieron Pollard is a Super Sixes winner

their teams.” The Super Six award was given to Barbados Tridents captain Kieron Pollard in the first match of the tournament against St Lucia Zouks while James Franklin of the Guyana Amazon Warriors took the prize in the second match against Trinidad and Tobago Red Steel. “Scoring sixes is cool. The fans love it and we at Limacol are always looking for exciting ways to promote activities that the fans enjoy,” Bassoo

said. “Limacol hopes that this will serve as further encouragement to the players to give their most optimum performance.”

About Limacol

Limacol is a cool refreshing lotion that is a “freshness of a breeze in a bottle”. It is a product of NEW GPC INC, and has been popular for almost a century across the Caribbean and in the diaspora in the US, Canada and Britain. For more information, log on to and

Gayle not sweating over form

Gone! It has not been all smooth sailing for Chris Gayle so far in the inaugural Limacol Caribbean Premier League (Limacol CPL photo) BY AVENASH RAMZAN


hris Gayle is going through a prolonged patch of poor form, but the Jamaican refuses to enter a debate about his performance, noting that his approach has always been team success over individual brilliance. The left-handed opener had an unforgettable Indian Premier League (IPL) season for the Royal Challengers Bangalore earlier this year, hitting a sensational 175 off 66 balls against the Pune Warriors, but his returns for the West Indies and Jamaica have been meagre of recent. Since his unbeaten 75 against Australia last October, Gayle has appeared in five T20 Internationals, scoring a total of 23 runs with the highest score being eight. For Jamaica, the

33-year-old has managed scores of six against the Guyana Amazon Warriors and 11 versus the Antigua Hawksbills in the current Limacol Caribbean Premier League. Speaking at the postmatch conference after the Jamaica Tallawahs trounced the Antigua Hawksbills by seven wickets on Sunday, Gayle was positive a slump in form had not befallen him. “I’m definitely not struggling; I’m playing according to the situation,” Gayle suggested. On Sunday, Gayle, usually a swashbuckling batsman, spent 20 deliveries for his 11 against the Hawksbills; an approach he said was in keeping with the team’s plan. He added, “These things do happen; we have a great bunch of players, [and a] good batting line-up, but we lost a key wicket ear-

ly so the best thing for me was to spend some time in the middle. Most times when I’m in the middle the opponents find it a bit difficult to utilise the bowlers so it actually worked [on Sunday]. I’m not worried at all about my batting. Time will tell as we go ahead in the tournament.” Gayle believes the ones who should really worry about his current form are the opposing teams. “Chris Gayle is fine; timing the ball very well. Getting wins is key for us, so they [the opposing teams] should be worried about Chris Gayle. Chris Gayle is not worried. Chris Gayle never worries about anything. He just plays the game according to the situation… if it doesn’t come off, it doesn’t come off,” the Jamaican related.


ising Stars Track and Field Club completed a successful tour of Canada last month, returning with more than 30 medals from two competitions. Kierre Beckles, who left the island Monday for the IAAF World Championships in Moscow, won the women’s 100 metre hurdles in 13.47 seconds at the Athletics Ontario Junior and Senior Championships. Teammate Sade Sealy, who also competed under the Rising Stars banner, won the 400 metres in 54.12 seconds after a time of 54.86 in the heats. Rivaldo Leacock set a personal time of 55.24 seconds in the 400-metre hurdles (91cm), competing in the Youth category to win that event. Shamar Rock won two of the five gold medals at the meet, leaping to a personal best 14.95 metres in the triple jump and also took the long jump with 7.05 metres. Rising Stars also finished third out of 47 teams with 13 gold, 10 silver and five bronze medals at the Flying Angels International Classic in Toronto. Leacock won two individual gold medals in the Youth section, taking both the 400 metres and 300 metres hurdles. He won the one-lapper in 50.69 seconds and the 300 metres hurdlles in 38.73. Juwan AugustinMayers, who was runner-up to Leacock in 44.02, won the 110 me-

Rivaldo Leacock won gold medals in the three different disciplines on the Rising Stars athletics trip to Canada. (Barbados Nation file photo)

tres hurdles in 14.77, as well as a bronze medal in the 200 metres in 23.12. In the same age group, Rock was a double silver medallist with 6.75 metres and 13.84 metres, respectively in the long jump and triple jump, while Aaron Worrell was also a runner-up in the high jump, clearing 1.60 metres. Ryan Vickers won the 80 metres hurdles in the Youth division in 12.25 seconds and Antoni Hoyte-Small was third in 13.47. Vickers also picked up silver in the 200 metres, racing to the finish in 27.37 seconds. Timeka Jordan’s two individual silver medals came in the senior sprints where she did 12.38 seconds and 25.53, respectively in the 100 and 200 metres. Akem Callender won the senior boys’ 100 in 11.55 seconds and was

third in the 200 in 23.97. Among the younger children, Jean-Paul Hibbert clocked 15 seconds flat to win the 100 metres for the Mites. He was second in the 200 metres in 33.84 seconds, while Unique Cox won the girls’ race in 34.38. Shem Williams won the long jump in the Atom section with a leap of 4.60 metres and his second medal, a bronze, came in the 100 metres where he clocked 13.45. Renita Sandiford won a silver medal in the Atom girls’ 400 metres in 1 minute.08.88 seconds and the final bronze medallist was Romari Archer with 5.40 metres in the Tyke’s shot put event. Five of the six relays teams also won gold medals, while several other athletes advanced to the finals but did not win medals.


sport | week ending August 8, 2013

I'm ready, says Bolt J

amaican sprint star Usain Bolt has declared himself 'ready' in his bid to defend his 200m crown and reclaim the title in the blue-riband 100m at the upcoming World Athletics Championships. Bolt, who was talking at a sponsors' event at Gorky Park on Sunday, now goes straight into training for the August 10-18 champs at the Luzhniki Stadium. Of course it's very important (to win back the title)," the 26-year-old Bolt said of the 100m crown he lost to injured teammate Yohan Blake when he false-started in Daegu, South Korea, in

2011. That failure has been the one blip on Bolt's impressive resume that includes Olympic gold in the 100m, 200m and 4x100m relay events in Beijing and London, and five world titles. "I want to keep winning every race that I compete in, and the 100m and 200m finals in Moscow will be the biggest races for me this year," the Jamaican said. "It's why I'm working hard with my coach to give myself the chance to do that." The world record holder in both the 100m and 200m added: "My season has been good, I'm getting stronger every

week and my execution and speed endurance is steadily improving. "Right now I'm in good shape, focused and feeling well, training hard, and I'm ready."


Meanwhile, all 44 members of Jamaica's team to the 14th IAAF World Championships were tested for drugs at their Moscow pre-championships training camp Monday, merely hours after the latest set of athletes entered the camp, ahead of Saturday's start of the Championships. The management of the blood testing, which lasted approximately five hours and was con-

ducted at the team's hotel, was part of the new comprehensive antidoping strategy for the World Championships that is being undertaken by the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) and the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA). It was implemented for the athletes' biological passport, and will see all of the near 2,000 athletes taking part in the nine-day event being tested, as part of the pre-competition test. Team media liaison officer Dennis Gordon confirmed the testing when contacted by Jamaican media Monday. "All our ath-

Usain Bolt (Jamaica Observer photo)

letes have completed the testing in accordance with WADA's rules," he said. He explained that the athletes were selected in batches of 10, and it took each set nearly an hour to be tested. The IAAF had announced earlier this

year that following up on the testing of all athletes who took part in the 2011 edition in Daegu, South Korea, they would be continuing the sophisticated anti-doping programme for the 14th edition of the championships. (Excerpt from Jamaica Observer)

Ogle smashes first century as Guyana beat Dominica


pener June Ogle smashed the first century to setup a con vincing 209 run victory for Guyana against Dominica as the West Indies Women 50 overs tournament opened at four venues across Grenada Monday. Ogle powered her way to an unbeaten 104 as Guyana amassed 268 for three from their 50 overs at the Tanteen playing field in St George’s. Dominica was bowled out for a paltry 59 runs in 28.1 overs with Pearl Ettiene scoring 15 and Annica Andrew 12. Ogle anchored the Guyanese innings and was merciless on the Dominican bowlers hitting five fours and facing 135 balls. She consolidated the innings by teaming up with Shemaine Campbelle who hammered eleven boundaries to reach 85. The Guyanese bowlers combined to dismiss their op-

ponents cheaply–Tremayne Smartt picking up three for 15, Hasena Mohamed three for four and Trishanie Cort two for 22. At the La Sagesse playing field in the central parish of St David’s, Jamaica humbled St Lucia by nine wickets. The Jamaican bowlers restricted their opponents to 74 runs in 33.4 overs largely through the efforts of Karla Cohen three for 22, Stefanie Taylor two for 13 and Roshana Outar two for five. Jamaica coasted to victory losing only the wicket of Natasha McClean bowled for 17 runs while Jodain Morgan and Stefanie Taylor were not out on 25 and 14. At Beausejour playing field on the outskirts of the capital, Trinidad and Tobago defeated Barbados by two wickets. A half century from Pamela Levine and help from Shaquana Quintyne hoisted Barbados to 134 all out in 38.3

Shemaine Campbelle

June Ogle

overs. Levine struck seven fours and six sixes to top score on 58 while Quintyne scored 44 runs which included four fours. Barbados’ difficulty in reaching a bigger total was as a result of the persistence of Kirbyina Alexander

who bagged five for 38 while Stephanie Ramcharan and Alisa Mohammed snared two wickets apiece. Trinidad stumbled a bit on the chase but the batting of Captain Merissa Aguilleria and Sheenelle Lord 34 carried them home.

Lord returned a top score of 34, Aguilleria chipped in with 24 and Alexander 13 as TT reached 135 for eight. Pamela Levine three for 18 and Deandra Dottin two for 12 were the pick of the Bajan bowlers. At Progress Park in the eastern parish of St Andrews, Captain Juliana Nero led St Vincent and the Grenadines to a comfortable 59 run win over host Grenada. Nero stared with the bat to score an unbeaten 86 that lifted the visitors to a competitive 227 all out in 48.3 overs. She received support from Terisha Lavia and Cordell Jack who contributed 34 and 23 runs each. Grenada suffered defeat despite an impressive all-round effort from Afy Fletcher, the pick of the Grenadian bowlers with four for 45. Rackel Williams picked up three for 39.

TT’s swimming star George Bovell to compete at FINA World Cup


resh from his bronze medal achievement, in the men 50-metre freestyle, at the FINA Swimming World Championships in Barcelona, Spain on Saturday, Trinidad and Tobago’s George Bovell III is scheduled to participate in the 2013 FINA Swimming World Cup. The World Cup is a series of eight, twoday, short course meets in eight different cities in August, October and November. And Bovell is expected to participate in the men 50 free in the World Cup arena. Action started Wednesday at the Pieter van den Hoogenband

George Bovell III (TT Guardian file photo)

Swimming Stadium, Eindhoven, Netherlands while the second meet will take place on Saturday and Sunday at the Europapark in Berlin, Germany.

The World Cup will resume on October 12 and 13 at the Olimpiysky Sports Complex, Moscow, Russia, with the fourth meet due for October 17 and 18 in Dubai Sports Complex, Dubai, United Arab Emirates. The other meets will take place on October 20 and 21 (at the Hamad Aquatic Centre, Doha, Qatar), November 5 and 6 (Singapore Sports School, Singapore), November 9 and 10 (Tokyo Tatsumi International Swimming Centre, Tokyo, Japan) and November 13 and 14 (Beijing National Aquatics Center, Beijing, China). (TT Newsday)



week ending August 8, 2013 |

Outstanding performances from Guyanese Gordon, Daesrath for Canada

Guyanese fast bowler Jeremy Gordon By Ravendra Madholall


uyanese fast bowler Jeremy Gordon and

batsman Damodar Daesrath performed outstandingly for Canada in the International Cricket Council (ICC)

Intercontinental Cup four-day match which concluded on Sunday at the King City Venue, Toronto. The twenty-six-yearold Gordon produced a man-of-the-match bowling display snaring eight wickets in the game after his first innings’ 6-43 from 13.5 overs while Daesrath chalked up another hundred within a week with 111. Gordon finished with two for 34 from 18 overs in the second innings as opponents United Arab Emirates (UAE) laboured to 207-4 when the game was mutually called off. They made 116 in their first appearance before the hosts rallied to a formidable 369-6 declared with the stylist right-handed Daesrath

fashioning his maiden four-day hundred. He mixed solid defense with occasional aggression during his 104ball occupation at the crease while he caressed 16 fours and three effortless sixes before he was dismissed via a catch. Several days ago, the former Guyana’s senior team skipper Daesrath waltzed his way to an impressive 109 against United States of America in the annual Auty Cup one-day competition. After the game on Sunday, Daesrath mentioned that he was extremely pleased with his performances and looking forward to maintain the same level of form in imminent matches. He attributed his unforgettable innings to hard work and commit-

ment, and also thanked his teammates and coach Gus Logie for their unwavering support. “I [am] very happy with my form now having achieved another milestone really gives me greater motivation to play hard and put my best foot forward for Canada in any version; my fellow players have been very supportive as well while my coach is very instrumental in getting every aspects of my batting right,” Daesrath, who featured in 17 firstclass matches for his native country, declared. The talented Gordon, who wore his country’s senior colour too, was also in an ecstatic mood having delivered with great precision and accuracy on a batting pitch to churn out such an admi-

rable accomplishment. “Yes, I am very much delighted to come out with the man-of-thematch performance for Canada; getting a sixwicket haul at the international level is certainly ‘wonderful’; I had to work hard because the track was quite batting friendly, but I am excited with the performance,” Gordon, who played for West Indies under-19 team in 2006, related. Meanwhile, the duo has been selected to represent the North America nation once again in the limited-over version against same opposition also at King City. The two countries will match their skills in four 50-over encounters which began on Tuesday.

FIFA confirms suspensions of Jamaicans


he world governing body of football, FIFA, Tuesday confirmed that a Jamaican footballer and a Jamaican team official have been provisionally suspended for an initial period of 30 days for a failed dope test in June. In line with article 74 paragraph 2 of its antidoping regulations, FIFA did not identify the player and/or the team official, stating that "only after it has been determined in a hearing that an anti-doping violation has occurred may FIFA publicly report the anti-doping rule violated, the name of the player or other person who

committed the violation, the prohibited substance and the consequences imposed". The release noted that the decisions of the chairman of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee were duly notified to the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) Tuesday. However, Jamaican media had reported Sunday that team doctor Carlton Fraser had been suspended by the JFF Medical Committee for his role in administering the prohibited substance-dexamethasone, a glucocorticoid-to player Jermaine Hue. Tuesday’s release from the FIFA, said: "The

chairman of the FIFA Disciplinary Committee has provisionally suspended a Jamaican international footballer and a Jamaican team official for an initial period of 30 days and opened disciplinary proceedings, following an adverse analytical finding in relation to a doping control conducted after the 2014 FIFA World Cup qualifier played in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, on June 11, 2013." It added: "Following the provision of the 'A' sample result, which tested positive for a prohibited substance mentioned on WADA's 2013 prohibited list, the player waived his right to

have the 'B' sample analysed." The player and the official have until August 12 to inform FIFA whether they wish to request a hearing. Irrespective of whether or not the player and the official request a hearing, the player, the official and/ or the Jamaican FA have until August 19 to submit a statement to FIFA, together with all related and supporting documentary evidence. "By testing positive for a prohibited substance, the player has contravened article 63 of the FIFA Disciplinary Code. The decision to provisionally suspend the player was taken in

Dr Calrton Fraser (left) and Jermaine Hue arriving at the Mexico City International Airport in February. (Garfield Robinson/Jamaica Observer file photo)

accordance with articles 38ff of the FIFA AntiDoping Regulations, and articles 129ff of the FIFA Disciplinary Code. The decision to provisionally

suspend the official was taken in accordance with articles 129ff of the FIFA Disciplinary Code," the release continued. (Jamaica Observer)

Barbados’ Chelsea Tuach continues to impress on the international surfing circuit


t the just concluded Ford ASP (Association of Surfing Professionals) 6 Star Women’s Pro held at Oceanside, California, Barbados’ 17-year-old surfing sensation, Chelsea Tuach, finished 19th in a field of 96. Tuach put in a commendable showing to advance through to round seven of the ten rounds of competition and ended in the Top 20 of the world’s best professional female surfers. She dominated her early heats to make it to the round of 48 when the top seeded women took to the water. It was here that she recorded the biggest upset of the tournament, defeating the recently crowned US Open junior female champion, and number

of the rising stars in the sporting world and in the

Chelsea Tuach of Barbados finished among the Top 20 female professional surfers at the ASP 6 Star Women’s Pro surfing event in California. (GP)

eighth ranked woman on the ASP Championship Tour, Bianca Buitendag, of South Africa. After making it to the round of 24, Tuach was eventually ousted after finishing fourth in her heat. Her placing equalled that of world No. 1, Carissa Moore, who also bowed out in the same

round. Last month, she finished third at the ASP Six Star Junior Pro event held at Lobitos, Peru. Her outstanding ability and results have attracted much international media attention, having been featured in a Red Bull documentary as well as in the spring issue of Athlete’s Quarterly as one

August issue of Eastern Surf Magazine as one of

the East Coast’s standout surfers. (PR/RB)

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


Harper Guyana Amazon Warriors aiming to Coach says no need reclaim Limacol CPL winning streak to panic

Guyana Amazon Warriors Head Coach Roger Harper

The Guyana Amazon Warriors during training last week Monday at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence


ead Coach of the Guyana Amazon Warriors, Roger Harper said on Tuesday there is no need to panic following the team’s five-wicket defeat to St Lucia Zouks in the Limacol Caribbean Premier League at the Guyana National Stadium on Sunday. The former West Indies coach reminded that the Warriors had been outstanding in the first two games, and is adamant the team will lift their spirits in time for Friday’s game. “Since we’ve been playing some good cricket at the

start of the tournament, we won’t let one game dampen the spirit of the boys. We have put it behind us and come Friday we will go out and play good cricket,” Harper said. The Warriors began the tournament with a crushing 19-run win over the Trinidad and Tobago Red Steels before thrashing the Jamaica Tallawahs by eight wickets. However, they were overpowered by the St Lucia Zouks on Sunday. Reflecting on Sunday’s game Harper said, “I think

the Zouks played really well. It was an off day for us and we have put it behind us and are looking forward to getting back to our winning ways.” Meanwhile, the 50-year-old Harper is confident that his players will respond positively from Sunday’s disappointment, adding that the team has the ability to regroup and rebound. “We have a group of players who are hungry for success, so I have that confidence that the team will rebound,” said Harper.

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Caribbean Times International - Week Ending August 08, 2013  
Caribbean Times International - Week Ending August 08, 2013  

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