32-Page Anniversary Special Saturday, November 23, 2013
Forty Years Of Covering The News
2. November 23,2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special.
Message by Sir Fred Gollop, Chairman, One Caribbean Media Limited (OCM).
T IS A FACT of history that successful newspapers have uncertain starts. Thus it was with THE NATION 40 years ago. The myriad problems and pressures of a young newspaper were all present at St Mary’s Row (THE NATION’S first home) in the weeks following publication of the first issue on November 23, 1973. The word from the banking and business community at the time was that THE NATION was bound to fail as did the Daily News some five years earlier. The newspaper therefore had to prove itself against considerable odds. The record shows that THE NATION, from its first issue, sought to identify with the concerns of ordinary people. The target readership was not the boardrooms of Bridgetown, but the highways and byways of Barbados. For me, the greatest achievement of the newspaper was its commitment to journalistic independence, fairness and balance. Following the total destruction of THE NATION’S printing press on the Port of Spain docks as it was being prepared for shipment to Barbados, arrangements had to be made with a commercial printing company in Trinidad to produce the weekly paper. The Trinidad Express, five months thereafter, agreed to print THE NATION at a more reasonable cost from Friday, April 12, 1974. This continued until March 1977 when THE NATION acquired its own printing press. By then Nation House on Fontabelle had been completed. The contribution of The Express and its Chief Executive Officer Ken Gordon cannot be overstated. It went far beyond printing and included advice on most aspects of the business, excluding editorial policy, but including training of technical staff. Their efforts have been recognized by a stone panel, unveiled in the foyer at Nation House on Fontabelle some 35 years ago. It bears the following inscription: “This panel, made of Trinidad stone, is dedicated to our friends at the Trinidad Express in appreciation of their encouragement and active assistance in these first years.” There are two other significant landmarks on the 40-year journey of THE NATION. The first was the acquisition of Barbados Rediffusion Service Limited, (now Starcom Network Limited) in 1979. The second was the merger of The Nation Group with Caribbean Communications Network Limited (CCN) of Trinidad and Tobago on January 1, 2006. The merger gave reality to the joint vision for the creation of a Pan-Caribbean media enterprise with an independent editorial voice, serving Caribbean readers, viewers and advertisers, both in the region and worldwide with leading media brands in publishing, television, radio broadcasting and the internet. It also provided the opportunity for THE NATION to renew its commitment to reflect in its media business not only greater regional understanding and cooperation, but to provide opportunities for greater exposure to journalists by training exchange or otherwise. THE NATION, as it celebrates four decades of service, can take comfort in the fact that it has justified the confidence placed on it by its reading public and by its founders and other stakeholders — a confidence which has made it today the most widely read journal in the island. Above all, THE NATION has never been afraid to fight unpopular causes and to champion the freedom and independence of the media. As THE NATION moves towards other milestones, it must resist every temptation to even appear to abandon its natural constituency. Long may it continue to serve the people of Barbados and its readers in the far flung corners of the world. I take this opportunity on behalf of the OCM family, and my own behalf, to salute past and present directors and staff, contributors, vendors, readers, advertisers and all those who, by their loyalty and unswerving support, have ensured the success of THE NATION.
SIR FRED GOLLOP CHAIRMAN, ONE CARIBBEAN MEDIA LIMITED
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Forty Years Of Covering The News
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23, 2013. 3
Message from Chairman of the Board of Directors of the Nation Publishing Co. Ltd, Harold Hoyte, on the occasion of its 40th anniversary
T EACH ANNIVERSARY of THE NATION newspaper’s 1973 founding, we are humbled as we recall the public support given to our efforts from inception at St Mary’s Row, Bridgetown. It is nothing short of a love story that we dearly cherish.
Therefore, at major milestones such as this 40-year juncture, we feel even more indebted to those whose service and support contributed immensely to securing our dream of giving to our country its own home-grown newspaper. That support has afforded a source of expression and a voice of reason by our people. We have also given our Governments a critical ear and a sounding board, and, to all who looked on, we have offered hope for the aspirations of a recently emerged independent country. The young men and women who founded this newspaper gave birth to an organization which assumed the cloak of citizen and the conduct of patriot, unapologetically becoming a living and lively participant in every important decision that would impact the struggles of Barbadians and the success of Barbados. All along we have determined to sustain a caring business entity and a newspaper with feeling. We have grown from an organization that started with five employees to one which is part of a group with over 400 people on its payroll while securing good returns for those who had the conviction to believe in our vision and the courage to invest in our idea. We have sought to achieve all of this without compromising journalistic standards or undermining the transparency of business integrity. Since our last major milestone in 2003, the Nation organization has become part of the One Caribbean Media group which incorporates newspaper, radio and television operations in most of the Caribbean islands. This was as a result of a carefully negotiated merger agreement between the Caribbean Communications Network of Trinidad and Tobago and us. Our association with that company goes back to our formative years, when in 1974 we greatly benefited from their practical experience and technical expertise. This change in our corporate structure has been wrongly identified by some detractors as a takeover by Trinidadian interests. Thus a negative spin has been put on a genuine blending of natural partners for our mutual good. We are proudly a part of the merging of equal business enterprises determined to use our combined strength to share the success of our brands with other Caribbean people and countries. There are over 1 000 Barbadians shareholders, including many staff members in One Caribbean Media. Our original vision of a newspaper by Barbadians for Barbadians has thus been broadened because we now have a wider regional focus and a new commitment to the Caribbean in a globalized world. Urged by our featured speaker at this year’s anniversary lecture, Sir Hilary Beckles on November 11, we will take this 40th annual opportunity to plan towards a successful 50th celebration, by doing the right things. Mindful of the injunction given one day earlier by Rev. Dr Von Watson at our anniversary church service when he quoted from James R. Lowell’s inspiring hymn, we will undertake this task, adhering to his words: “New occasions teach new duties Time makes ancient good uncouth. They must upward still and onward, Who would keep abreast of truth. Though the cause of evil prospers, Yet ‘tis truth alone is strong.”
HAROLD HOYTE CHAIRMAN OF THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS OF THE NATION PUBLISHING CO. LIMITED
Forty Years Of Covering The News
4. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special.
Celebrating, innovating thanks to you Message from Vivian-Anne Gittens, Publisher and CEO of the Nation Publishing Co. Limited and CEO of the Nation Corporation on the occasion of THE NATION newspaper’s 40th anniversary.
ORTY YEARS AGO on this date, the first NATION newspaper was introduced to Barbados. That first issue was a manifestation of all the ideas, dreams, hopes and ambitions of our early founders whose meetings, at what was formerly the Press Club on Bay Street, mushroomed into something bigger and greater than any of them could have ever imagined. THE NATION newspaper was aptly named. It sought to reflect accurately the interests of Barbadians at a time when identity and nationalism was of paramount importance. The supreme responsibility of being the mouthpiece for the man on the street was not lost on those early writers. In 1973, we were honoured to represent you as the Barbadian newspaper of choice. In 2013, the honour is still ours. Our inaugural cover featured baby Eamon Simmons, who, like us, was described as young, eager and hopeful. Like him, we have since grown and matured and are now proud to be a fully thriving multimedia organization. The seamless transition which we have been able to make has been with your full and unwavering support. As we look to the future, it is with you, our public in mind. We are constantly seeking new and creative ways to connect and interact with you, in a greater effort to strengthen the relationship. As messengers of public information, we understand the role of technology and embrace it. This has led to our presence on social media, which thus far, has allowed us to establish dialogue with our audiences both here and in the diaspora in a more friendly and personable way. The introduction of our eNation and other digital publications has allowed us to meet you where you are on any device or platform. These developments solidify our
BOARD OF DIRECTORS
PUBLISHER AND CEO
WILFRED FIELD DIRECTOR/SALES AND MARKETING CONSULTANT
DIRECTOR AND FOUNDER
STEPHEN BRATHWAITE DIRECTOR
VIVIAN-ANNE GITTENS PUBLISHER AND CHIEF EXECUTIVE NATION PUBLISHING CO LIMITED
commitment to you, always to innovate with our products while delivering the same great content. We in turn encourage you to continue to give us feedback so that we may better serve you. On this milestone occasion, I wish formally to offer our gratitude to you. Thank you for supporting that first newspaper issue and every issue thereafter. Thank you for fully supporting our entire publishing unit as well as our events and other initiatives. We could not have made it to 40 years without you as our partners and for that we are truly grateful. Thank you, Barbados, for your support.
EXECUTIVE MANAGEMENT VIVIAN-ANNE GITTENS
ROY R. MORRIS EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
PUBLISHER AND CEO
GROUP FINANCIAL CONTROLLER
HEAD OF TECHNOLOGY
Tel: 427-1084 • Email: email@example.com VALERIE HOPE HEAD OF MARKETING AND COMMUNICATIONS
MARGARET HUSBANDS GROUP HUMAN RESOURCES MANAGER (ACTING)
CAROLINE ADAMSON HEAD OF STAFF TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT
WILFRED FIELD DIRECTOR/SALES AND MARKETING CONSULTANT
Forty Years Of Covering The News
Meeting of minds gives birth to The Nation S OMETIME EARLY in March 1973, Harold Hoyte ran into attorney at law Fred Gollop (now Sir Fred) outside Hoyteâ€™s Universal Travel Services on Coleridge Street, The City, where he was assistant manager. Both being former journalists, having worked at the Advocate in the early 1960s, the discussion soon got around to the declining standard of journalism and the need for another newspaper to take the place of the defunct Daily News. They left each other with the resolve to convene a meeting of like-minded people who had expressed similar concerns, with a view to establishing a newspaper. So serious was their conviction that a meeting was held soon afterwards at the Barbados Press Association, located on Bay Street, St Michael. Those present made a strong commitment to two ideals: raising the standard of journalism to a more professional level and local ownership of the media. On July 13, 1973, after a series of meetings, the Nation Limited was incorporated as a private company with limited liability. Its first directors were: Harold Hoyte, the first chairman; Fred Gollop, Harold Banfield, then manager of Island Press Limited; Carl Moore, who became the first editor; and Dudley Mayers, then the technical manager at
Continued on next page.
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Forty Years Of Covering The News
6. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special.
Paper arrives to rousing welcome From Page 5. Roberts Manufacturing Co Limited. The company’s secretary was Edmund Hall, then chief accountant with the Caribbean Broadcasting Corporation. Some of the ardent individuals who attended those early meetings included Gordon Brooks and Stephen Brathwaite, who are current directors; Junior LaTouche, Trevor Clarke, Charles Harding, Jeanette LayneClark, Sam Wilkinson and Tyrone Evelyn. Initially, the aim was to produce a 16-page tabloid paper on Fridays with a weekly circulation of 7 000 copies to be printed on a sheet-fed Solna 125 offset press. It was also projected that within three months the company would produce a Wednesday edition of 3 500 copies. However, the response from the advertisers was so overwhelming that the first edition was a whopping 48 pages. It was snapped up by readers who were waiting eagerly for the much-hyped publication, which hit the streets a day later than the scheduled November 23 date due to technical problems with printing. The publication delivered what it said it would and much more and the response grew. The second edition was 32 pages; the third, 16 pages; the fourth, 24 pages and the fifth, 32 pages. Circulation, too, exceeded all expectations as each week the infant company was selling 20 000 copies. At the helm of this vibrant, young, and some may say “upstart”, company that took the island by storm in November 1973 were: Moore as editor,
THE FIRST SHIPMENT of NATION newspapers arriving at St Mary’s Row. (FP)
AN EXHAUSTED AL GILKES taking five after a gruelling stint on the campaign trail. (FP)
Harding as news editor, Al Gilkes as features editor and Brathwaite as sales manager. The late Joe Brome, Tony Cozier, Tony Best, Clive Daniel and Carol Taylor joined Layne-Clark, Wilkinson and Evelyn as regular columnists during the early months. But this story almost was not written. Two weeks before the first edition was due to hit the streets, the secondhand Solna 125 offset press, which the company had purchased, was damaged beyond repair as it was being loaded on the Trinidad docks. This sent shock waves through the team who were working feverishly to bring to fruition what was a dream less than a year ago. Fuelled by the commitment to advertisers and, most of all, staff members who had already resigned their previous jobs to join
this fledgling company, they were determined not to be deterred from achieving their dream. Gollop and Banfield flew immediately to Trinidad and made arrangements with Syncreators Limited, a Trinidad printing company, to print the newspaper. However, this option proved to be very costly as Syncreators did not have genuine newsprint readily available. Early in 1974, it became clear that the arrangement with Syncreators could not continue for much longer. In January and February of that year, they were constrained by the limitations of the printers who were unable to print a paper in excess of 16 pages and no more than 18 000 copies. This situation put immense pressure on the finances of the company and after four months it was forced to seek new printing arrangements. The company turned to Ken Gordon, managing director at the Express Newspapers Limited, printers and publishers of the
Trinidad Express. Gordon came to THE NATION’s assistance at a crucial time in the young company's history. He saw the potential of the newspaper but felt that the young team had a lot to learn regarding the economics of the newspaper industry despite their journalistic talents and enthusiasm. Under the terms of an agreement reached at a meeting held at Maresol Beach Apartments in March 1974, the Express Newspapers Limited undertook to print the newspaper and assist the company technically until such time as THE NATION was strong enough to stand on its own. The Trinidad Express ensured that an adequate amount of newsprint was available for THE NATION to produce a larger paper – in size and circulation. Realising that the Trinidad company would not realize a profit on this type of arrangement, it was agreed that THE NATION would offer equity to the Express up to a ceiling of 20 per cent.
Forty Years Of Covering The News
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Nation emerged in era of change The following is an edited version of the public lecture entitled The Nation Within Our Nation: The Media And People Power, delivered by Principal of the Cave Hill Campus of the University Of The West Indies, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles, at the Frank Collymore Hall, as part of the Nation Publishing Co. Limited’s 40th Anniversary celebrations. TRULY AM HONOURED indeed by this invitation to present to the public a lecture in celebration of THE NATION enterprise on the occasion of its 40th anniversary. It is a good thing that THE NATION has reached this age. It is a good thing that its founders mostly are here to welcome this moment. I know or know of most of you who have brought this media house to this moment. And from my own distant corner I have respected your efforts from the objectivity of my own imagination. I wish to pay tribute to all the founders and friends of this institution, who in a Columbus style voyage have reached this place. The log book of this voyage reveals that it took extraordinary courage and skill. I have read the details of this voyage in the media accounts of Carl Moore, legend; the brilliant narrative of Harry Mayers, Against The Odds; and, of course, Harold Hoyte’s Order And Disorder, Eyewitness and all such interventions. These texts reveal the existence of minds and imaginations possessed by extraordinary men and women such as Sir Fred, Harold, Ken Gordon, Carl Moore, Al Gilkes, and so many
other persons who have not only built this NATION, but who are themselves outstanding nation-builders. I do believe that the ancestral beginning, 1973,, that it is a moment that needs to be theorized. I think we need to understand the contextual moment in which this enterprise emerged. We know some things about that moment. It was the post black power eruption of this region. It was a time when new ideas and new philosophies were emerging about social justice, about social equality and a young generation of men and women were determined to push Barbados and other societies away from the colonial shackles. It was a moment of tremendous intellectual energy as we tried to put an end to the colonial dispensation. We are all familiar with the iconography of that moment, such iconography as Harold Hoyte’s afro and coloured shirts. And all of the young men and women with their huge afros, flowered shirts, and bell-bottom trousers. Those were the imageries of a moment in time, of a consciousness that was emerging within our youth. It was a period in which we questioned the colonial nature of our society. Barbados was arguably the most deeply colonized of our Caribbean societies. It was here, after all, that the British had built the first slave society in the New World. It was here that the structures of the plantation economy and society were built, perfected and exported. It was here that black people, for 300 years, had lived within the context of a plantation prison, not only a prison for their labour and
RESTING IN THE MIDST OF IT ALL: After a hard week spent producing the newspaper, the weekly commutes to Trinidad for the printing process sometimes proved to be quite and energy sapper. (FP)
their bodies but a prison for their minds. It was also in the post-apartheid period of Barbados. A hundred years of emancipation had resulted in 100 years of apartheid. It was a place that black men and women of vision and of moral authority felt culturally oppressed. I too, grew up in this society with that cultural oppression. There was an oppressive space. All of us in Barbados were driven into what Kamau Brathwaite called the inner plantation of our souls. That’s where we lived and dwelled. It was a period in which The Right Excellent Errol Barrow told us the time had come to stop loitering on colonial premises. The UWI (University of the West Indies) newly established here, just ten years, was in doubt. In doubt about the future and its capacity to be free in such an environment. And there was, of course, the Advocate. THE NATION as an enterprise set out,
therefore, to create space for the people. It is very important to understand the importance of space for the mind. In an oppressive colonial space there is no room for your creative imagination. Any enterprise therefore, that sought to create intellectual space, discursive space, a space for people to read and to write and to think, took on a revolutionary potential. THE NATION now became part of what Kamau Brathwaite called the unearthing of Barbadian culture. And this benefit was immediate. For many years it was thought that the people of Barbados had been deculturalized by the plantation system. Kamau Brathwaite has always argued that even in the most oppressive circumstance, people are never deculturalized; that you bury your culture. You bury your culture within
Continued on Page 12.
Forty Years Of Covering The News
8. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special.
-----PRIVILEGE PUMP – JANUARY 6, 1974 What became known as the PRIVILGE PUMP, a facility set aside for selected “officials” with the presentation of letters, was uncovered during the peak of the 1973-74 energy crisis when motorists across Barbados formed long, unruly queues for limited quantities of petrol. The publication of the story at the beginning of 1974 underscored THE NATION newspaper’s promise to engage in more than mundane news reporting and to get behind the scenes to uncover stories that, among other things, portrayed society’s double standards. It was the first major news scoop for the just more than one-month-old fledgling weekly newspaper. MY ORDEAL AT SEA – MARCH 21, 1978 This represented a daring piece of journalism, fulfilled and gave meaning to THE NATION’s pledge to journey to “the end of the world” to report on news about Barbadians for Barbadians. News Editor Al Gilkes, an experienced journalist, made the 72-hour trip to Spain to meet former politician and Cabinet Minister Captain George Fergusson, who was missing at sea for some 11 days and was once thought to have perished in the mysterious Bermuda Triangle. MAKE AN ARREST! (Who killed Pele?) – OCTOBER 11, 1978 A Dennis Malone Commission of Enquiry in 1979 ended without a conclusion but THE NATION was unrelenting in its editorials and other efforts for the arrest and punishment of the person(s) responsible for Victor “Pele” Parris’ death. Coroner Keith Simmons determined that the 30-year-old footballer, teacher and political campaigner was murdered by a person or persons unknown. Parris was allegedly gunned down at Atlantic Shores, Christ Church on the night of May 17, 1978. THE NATION, as a public duty, devoted the front page of its October 11, 1978 edition, to an editorial that brought into sharp focus the findings and pertinent statements from the coroner’s inquiry. DODDS INDOORS – NOVEMBER 9, 1979 This story, although not intended to embarrass state authorities, served as a wake-up call to management of the juvenile detention facility at Dodds, St Philip, and at the same time exposed the conditions under which delinquents there were subjected to. THE NATION reporters, who dared to visit the detention facility at night, were assisted in their assignment – testimony that the newspaper’s customers supported its efforts to expose official neglect and highlight suffering of Barbadians; even those under punishment in correctional institutions.
Forty Years Of Covering The News
INTERVIEW WITH A PRISONER (Sidney Burnett-Alleyne) – April 3, 1977 Sidney Burnett-Alleyne, a notorious international gunrunner, attracted much attention during the 1970s in Barbados and elsewhere in the Caribbean, as a self-claimed merchant banker and self-styled guerrilla leader. He was under house arrest at a St James, Barbados, address in 1975 and in November 1976 was intercepted in Martinique waters aboard a Canadian-registered 50-foot diesel yacht, Antinea, which was drifting, believed to be heading for Barbados, with four crates of arms and ammunition. THE NATION followed the Sidney Burnett-Alleyne story from the time news broke that he was on his way to Barbados with a band of mercenaries to overthrow the Tom Adams-led Barbados Labour Party (BLP) Government. The newspaper provided merit coverage of Burnett-Alleyne’s incarceration in Martinique and flew journalist Al Gilkes and photographer Gordon Brooks to Fort de France for the Barbadian’s trial there in March 1977. Apart from the trial, which was covered in five inside pages of the April 3 edition, Al Gilkes also scored a first for the regional media, interviewing a prisoner in a Fort de France jail, unprecedented in Martinique’s legal history. STRIKE ON/DEADLOCK (David Giles’ strike) JANUARY 9 and 21, 1981 Barbadians followed unfolding events with interest, as the dispute between the Barbados Workers’ Union and Barbados Telephone Company escalated to a national strike over the dismissal of David Giles, president of the union’s telephone division. Some 30 000 union members, including those from utility companies, were put on standby for a solidarity strike, when more than 500 telephone company workers began strike action from midnight on Thursday, January 8. A number of cargo ships bypassed the Bridgetown Port or sailed away with their cargoes because port workers were off the job on Monday, January 19, in solidarity with the telephone workers. The public transport system was also crippled on January 19.
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Forty Years Of Covering The News
10. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special.
Most public interest/outcry
CUBANA CRASH – OCTOBER 17, 1976 Few Barbadians alive at the time will forget October 6, 1976, when Cubana Flight 455 with 73 people on board crashed off Barbados’ West Coast. The ill-fated aircraft was en route to Havana, after putting off in Barbados, passengers, including Barbadians, coming in from Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago, when an explosion that turned out to be a terrorist act occurred in its back end, forcing the airplane’s return to what was then Seawell Airport. The crippled, low-flying Cubana aircraft caused much concern as it hovered over the densely populated Grazettes Housing Area, St Michael, before veering out to sea and plunging vertically into the waters off Barbados. It was not only the first time terrorism had reached Barbados’ borders but it occurred on the afternoon of the ceremonial opening of Parliament following the September general election, while the new Tom Adams-led Barbados Labour Party Government was preparing to unveil, in the customary Throne Speech, its developmental programme for this country. Barbadians followed with interest, investigations here and in Port of Spain and the detention of Colombian Jose Garcia and Cuban Freddy Luga, believed to be responsible for the aircraft’s bombing. There was also some concern as well that a Colombian woman, who listed her occupation as a prostitute, might have been involved, not only in the Cubana attack but bombings of the BWIA offices in The City and the Guyana Mission in Port of Spain earlier that year. There was a thought in some parts of the Caribbean that the Cubana bombing was a backlash for the daring decision by Barbados, Guyana and Trinidad and Tobago to establish diplomatic relations with Fidel Castro’s communist Cuba. The Cubana disaster occurred 24 hours after THE NATION, then a weekly newspaper printed in Trinidad, had gone to press but the publication devoted its front page, the page four editorial and nine other news pages of the next edition, dated October 17, to extensive coverage of the October 6 disaster that included pictures not previously published.
NAKED SURRENDER (Buddy Brathwaite) – JUNE 12, 1977 The humble Briar Hill community awoke to the sounds of gunfire and dynamite explosions just before sunrise on the morning of June 4, 1977, when a specially trained unit of the Royal Barbados Police Force surrounded a small wooden house in the tiny village near Vauxhall in Christ Church and ended the nine-month run of fugitive Simeon “Buddy” Brathwaite. The notorious Brathwaite was a cause for concern, evading capture by the police on three previous occasions; acting on a strong tip-off, what became known as the “Buddy” Brathwaite Squad staked out the Briar Hill house and began its final assault just as the sun peeped over the foliage from its eastern horizon. Brathwaite, with a penchant for explosive devices, resorted to sticks of dynamite in response to the police’s hail of bullets and tear gas but was forced from his sheltered freedom, naked as he was born, hands upraised and with a bleeding shoulder
just after 5:30 a.m. THE NATION’S Harold Hoyte, Al Gilkes and photographer Ronnie Carrington provided on-the-spot eyewitness accounts of the Briar Hall drama on the front page of its June 12 edition, with a bold headline: Hunt For Buddy Ends With Vauxhall Battle: Naked Surrender and three inside news pages of detailed reports and photos.
CHILD HUNT IS ON (Thelia Snagg) – DECEMBER 6 and 11, 1988 It was not only the most locally publicized missing person report since the disappearance of salesman Mark Stokes in 1973 but mystery still surrounds the whereabouts of Thelia Snagg, the seven-year-old Eagle Hall Primary School student who vanished within an hour after leaving school on December 5, 1988. Eyewitnesses reported seeing the Black Rock, St Michael, schoolgirl near an open area at Eagle Hall about 3:30 p.m. with a woman standing next to her, and a woman who operated a shop
in the same area said she was surprised seeing little Thelia in that location because she had never been there before. But according to that eyewitness, the schoolgirl just disappeared. “I just don’t know where she went,” the shopkeeper exclaimed. The disappearance worried the entire Crawford Land, Black Rock community and was a major talking point at social and other gatherings in Barbados. It engaged the attention of the Royal Barbados Police Force, which deployed a special unit from the Criminal Investigations Department to assist with investigations. THE NATION, in its December 11, 1988 edition, published a full story of the mysterious disappearance, along with a map of Black Rock, showing the area where Snagg lived at Crawford Land and the nearby Eagle Hall Primary School and where she was last seen near Mapp’s shop at the Eagle Hall junction. It also kept the story before the public with posters featuring Snagg, and asking: Have You Seen This Child? Seven-YearOld Thelia Snagg. If So Call Police at 436-6600.
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SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23, 2013. 11
Most memorable WHY I QUIT (the Frank Alleyne story) – DECEMBER 16, 1973 The Why I Quit story stamped THE NATION as a newspaper of worth. It came at a time when, just weeks after heralding the newspaper’s arrival, the big story seemed illusionary. Then Frank Alleyne (now Sir Frank), a member of the ruling Democratic Labour Party’s general council, resigned as chairman of the Prices Commission and as a director of the Barbados Marketing Corporation. Although he was not an elected member of Parliament, Alleyne’s resignation was the first major fracture within a governing party since Errol Barrow et al parted company with (Sir) Grantley Adams and the Barbados Labour Party in 1955. It was no ordinary political development and THE NATION seized the opportunity to demonstrate its capacity to get “the real story behind the story”. NATION Director Harold Hoyte cancelled his other business commitments and chased after Alleyne, a University of the West Indies lecturer in economics, and got him to explain in THE NATION’S first exclusive interview, why he resigned from the two positions. It was THE NATION’S first big story. OH WHAT A NIGHT (night cricket – National Stadium) – OCTOBER 26, 1980 It was the significance of the event, rather than the cricket itself, that will long be remembered. For THE NATION, with the help of noted sports journalist Tony Cozier, gave Barbadians their first ever experience with night cricket – a match featuring a SUNDAY SUN 11 and a visiting Worcestershire county team from England. It was also the first time that cricket was played at the National Stadium, opened in 1970 for track and field, football and cycling. An artificial (matting) wicket, imported from England for the historic match, was laid out on the stadium grounds – another first-time development in this country. White balls were used in the match; players were attired in coloured clothing and Sunflower girls dressed in shorts carted refreshments to the cricketers that included former West Indies players Collis King (Barbados) and Roy Fredericks (Guyana). It was a memorable Friday night at the National Stadium.
Simpson Motors says “Congrats”
FREE, FREE AT LAST (Mandela’s freedom) – FEBRUARY 12, 1990 While Barbadians joined millions across the world following Nelson Mandela’s televised freedom walk after 27 years in South African jails, NATION staffers spared little effort putting together a Monday newspaper that would reflect the emotions that gripped the world just after 10 a.m. (Barbados time) that Sunday. The front page headline: Free, Free At Last told a story of international jubilation and the Associated Press wirephoto, with a quotation from the world’s best known political prisoner, epitomized Mandela’s emotion and that of the cheering crowds outside the Victor Verster prison near Cape Town, when Mandela walked from the South African jail. The February 12 edition also contained several inside pages documenting Mandela’s turmoil, with world reaction to his release from prison. It was a world event thousands who witnessed it will always remember.
Warrens, St. Michael. Tel: 417-7777 ,www.simpson-motors.com
Forty Years Of Covering The News
12. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special.
Youthful eruption set tone From Page 7. your spirit, within your soul and you await the environment that is conducive for the eruption of that culture. And THE NATION newspaper became the digger of the space that allowed for the conversations about Barbadian culture. And I have some interesting memories of the way in which it has sponsored and participated in the calypso and the carnival and music, and the role of THE NATION in helping young calypsonians and musicians to think and to perform and to encourage them, give them awards and to reward them, that was absolutely revolutionary. But it requires tremendous courage to confront the past. It is no easy matter in Barbados to confront the past. It is no easy matter in our society to confront the establishment. Our past is deeply buried in our institutions. When those institutions do not give us the space that we need and we criticize those institutions, the response can be swift and painful. And, therefore, the leaders of THE NATION enterprise were people of self will, of self-confidence and personal pride. All great moments in history, all great institutions begin with a refusal on the part of people with courage. And no doubt you decided you were tired of reading The Advocate. You decided that you were tired of the lack of space which you deserved. You decided that you were tired of the narrative, the ideological postures and the political positions that were given to you every day. And you decided that the time had come to do something about it. I have the greatest respect for people who take a stand. So it begins with a revolt of the spirit, a revolt of the soul and the first step to the creation of black enterprise. Now the concept of economic democracy in which all persons, irregardless of their race, their gender, ethnicity, could participate freely in the economy of this country, that discussion has been going on for 50 years. If you read some of the conversations in the quarterlies, people like Wynter Crawford, P. T. Lewis – one of the great white democrats of this society not yet recognized but whom, in my judgement, should be a National Hero of Barbados – if you read the narrative of these great persons, they were saying that the economy of Barbados was not sustainable so long as it remained confined in the hands of a narrow minority. No economy is sustainable within that structure. And so the conversation about an economic democracy in which all citizens freely participate in the generation of wealth and the ownership of wealth, that conversation had been a part of the anti-colonial movement. Errol Barrow, at the moment of framing the nation at Independence, spoke about the need for a just society. And the conception of a just society meant that there would have to be justice not only in social relations but also justice in economic relations. The contradiction has remained a feature of our post-Independence nation. In fact, the evidence would suggest that post-colonial Barbados, post-independent Barbados was crafted upon a formula of ethnic divisions of labour. That the black community would take responsibility for the management of the state and the white community would take responsibility for the management of the corporate sector. And therein was this division of labour and the creation of two groups of citizens. That equation, however, required a fair amount of silence on one side and a fair amount of oppression on the other side. It was not the ideal formula upon which to build a modern nation. No modern nation can be built
AL GILKES greeting young fans during a 1983 Nation Bandwagon. (FP) upon such a division between its citizens. And therefore all citizens who were committed to the removal of these barriers found themselves in support of what was then the emerging NATION enterprise. It was then the formulation of a debate that had been going on for 50 years. THE NATION therefore has three conceptual beginnings. The first is the 1970 post-Stokely Carmichael revolutionary movement. Stokely Carmichael declared he wanted to speak, he was not allowed to speak. The Government of Barbados prevented Stokely Carmichael from speaking to his fellow citizens. An atrocious moment in history. In fact, a vulgar moment in history that a young man, brilliant theorizer of the modern world cannot speak in society just four years after Independence. The second issue is the postcolonial compromise of history’s course . . . and remember that in 1966 when Barbados took the step towards Independence it was a deeply divided nation, it was a deeply divided community. And so we went into Independence with some division and some doubt. But importantly the third feature of this eruption is that THE NATION reflected an eruption of young people. That is very important. Young people . . . Harold, Fred, Carl Moore, Al Gilkes . . . young people . . . it was a movement of young people, and this was important because we look to young people for the energy, the confidence to push away from traditions. I do not know that Harold would have taken those revolutionary steps now, but he was young and so was Sir Fred, they were young men. And its important to give young people the support Ken Gordon did willingly. But as you’ve heard it was expected to fail. It was expected that this ambitious group of reckless young people, that you give them the rope and they will go and hang themselves. That was the order of things. That is how the colonial world has always worked. Young people rise up. You execute a few of them, you hang a few of them, you go back to normal. That had been the history of 300 years. And therefore this eruption of youthful imagination was expected to fail. I was fascinated reading accounts of the psychological reaction to the day when it was late. The moment of lateness, one day. Today of course, that would have been conceived as a marketing ploy; but then, the anxiety, the fear of failure, the expectation of failure and, of course, the expectation of failure is very deep within the historical philosophy of black incompetence. Black incompetence had been
offered up as an explanation for 300 years as to why, according to Grantley Adams in 1951, the black boys could not run things. That was the conversation in the 1951 election. The year after adult suffrage in Barbados 1950, the election was fought on whether or not black people could run things. And we have to recognize these kinds of issues, we have to recognize the ideological environment within which institutions emerge. I have not read an explanation, or maybe I’ve missed it, as to why the concept of THE NATION was chosen for the newspaper. But I
take it at face value that a group of young men were taking responsibility for crafting a trajectory for the new nation. That Barbados had to become a reinvented nation, it had to be a nation in which young people would find space and room, and this newspaper was going to assist in creating a new Barbados. That was the remit and some people were taking responsibility for it. Now we do not take for granted the concept of a nation. There are many people in the world today who do not live within nations. There are many people who live in communities that have not been formulated constitutionally as nations. And therefore a nation has not only to be imagined, a nation has to be constructed and created. And it has to be coherent, otherwise it falls apart. So first of all you imagine that Barbados could become not a colony anymore, it’s going to become a coherent nation that can serve the purposes of all its citizens equally and fairly. You had to believe in that. Those who run THE NATION newspaper had to believe that people power would be on their side. If they did not believe that people power would be on their side they would not have taken the step. But somehow they imagined that their enterprise would be supported by the emerging nation. And thus the people, constituted as a nation, were expected to rise up in support of this nation. And so THE NATION newspaper was in the vanguard of change.
Continued on next page.
Forty Years Of Covering The News From Page 12. But change, as you all know, can be a doubleedged sword, especially in the context of nationalism. Because nationalism is both a progressive ideology and a backward ideology simultaneously. Because nationalism can on the one hand promote progressive and positive change but, on the other hand, remember that the Nazis of Germany and the Facists of Italy were nationalists. So we are always mindful of the double-edged side of nationalism. So let us look at the positive side. It seems to promote harmony within the community and therefore THE NATION newspaper had to imagine that it was going to take responsibility for the greatest weight to carry: the national interest. How do you imagine that you can take responsibility for something called the national interest? You could very well say that you had to have an audacity to believe that you can represent and reflect what is in the national interest. It requires maturity, it requires intellectual confidence and it requires intellectual certainty to believe that you can objectively understand and comprehend what is in the interest of your nation and persevere to protect and to represent it. Many institutions have tried and have failed. The remarkable thing I believe about THE NATION newspaper is that it did capture the national imagination. It did capture quite accurately and effectively what Barbadians really wanted in terms of going forward and it was critical, especially then, to realize that change had to come and that change would be a good thing.
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23, 2013. 13
Time now to focus on 50 There is a feature of THE NATION that I have always personally celebrated. Barbados is a provincial society, it’s a small society, it’s a narrow society. Like many small towns in the US, you can get a local provincial paper and there is nothing in that paper other than what is taking place down the street, because it’s a provincial paper. It relates to a provincial consciousness of the people who live down the street. THE NATION could have become a provincial paper, reflecting what was taking place around the streets, in The City, the countryside, but it chose not to be. Maybe it was the moment of the rise of CARICOM and the emergence of a regional consciousness. Clearly you had the intervention and the advantage of people like Ken Gordon who had a regional remit. And so it seems to me that THE NATION quickly and effectively wore a regional hat, and that was important to me. Because it was suggesting to all of us that our future cannot reside entirely within the confines of our 11 parishes. That our future had to be seen in regional terms through negotiations, partnerships; it had to be seen also in terms of our international remit. And I have looked at some of their early papers and I was impressed with the coverage of international issues. Now this is very important. But here we have it now, arguably the dominant black enterprise in Barbados. It has
on the one hand the imagery of the power of the one. It is out there as the one, the example, the model. But the one is always in danger because one is just one step away from zero. And therefore the issue of a moment not evolving into a movement becomes something of great concern to me as a person involved in sustainable development. How do you take a moment that is successful and transform that moment into a movement where there are many other models? I am sure that the editorial family has tried to imagine the difficulties in this society of duplicating itself, but we have to pay respect for success. Success in a post colonial society is never guaranteed. THE NATION enterprise was like the salmon really swimming against the tide. And as you are swimming against the tide and you are expected to fail and you do succeed, you have to give respect to leadership, editorial vision, management and financial savvy. That is why it has survived. I wish to offer a little piece of advice for my closing commentary. You are celebrating your 40th year. I came to Cave Hill Campus as
principal ten years ago in its 40th anniversary. While we were celebrating the 40th year of the campus, my focus was on the 50th year of the Cave Hill Campus. And I would sit in my office and try to imagine the kind of campus I would wish Cave Hill to be on its 50th year. And we assembled a team of people who would speak about Cave Hill at 50. What kind of campus would this society require on its 50th year? There was doubt as to whether we could move from what we were to what we wished we could be and imagined we could be. It was quite a distance. But we believed that when we reached our 50th year we wanted to celebrate with dignity. And so we put together a team, we called it Team Cave Hill – Cave Hill at 50. And Team Cave Hill – Cave Hill at 50 started in our 40th year, and we pursued the transformation of that institution over those ten years and now we are celebrating this year our 50th year. And this is what we imagined it should be ten years ago. So I am saying to you, my friends, you are a great newspaper, you are in your 40th year, imagine the empire you wish to be in the 50th year. Imagine it now, plan for it now, put your team together and pursue it. And, hopefully, you can invite me back to give your 50th lecture. I promise you I will just tick off all the wonderful, extraordinary things that you have done in those ten years.
Forty Years Of Covering The News
14. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special.
Inspiration for for black business
by CHARLES HARDING
No commentary on black business in Barbados during the past 30 years can be complete without extensive cover of the Nation Group. Indeed, the University of the West Indies Cave Hill Campus should by now have developed a comprehensive case study of this remarkable group of black businessmen. – Accountant Ken Hewitt, writing in THE NATION newspaper of September 20, 2010.
OUNG, BRIGHT AND AMBITIOUS black Barbadians, no longer cowering in corners of fear, are now risking huge investments in local enterprises, some unheard of here less than half century ago. Armed with basic training and knowledge gained from the Barbados Chamber of Commerce 20-week Junior Achievement Programme and Government’s Youth Entrepreneurship Scheme, young men and women are banding with high school colleagues, writing business plans while still in form rooms and launching car rental companies, computer and information technology enterprises and a range of other economic outfits. They have joined some of the more courageous black entrepreneurs, who, since the 1970s, have ventured far outside the traditional family businesses – single-handed trades as blacksmiths and carpenters, village rum shop proprietors, grocers and street vendors that seemed the preserves of preceding generations of so-called black Barbadian business people.
Success stories They seem to be inspired by the success stories of black enterprises that emerged on the local scene in that decade: the Nation Publishing Co. Limited that defied the odds when it launched its first weekly newspaper from St Mary’s Row in November 1973; Ken Hewitt, who established the first black chartered accounting firm, since merged with Peat, Warwick, Mitchell and Co. to become KPMG in 1973; the Barbados Lumber Company, a partnership of former Barbados and West Indies cricketers and Combermerians: Charlie Griffith, Peter Lashley, Amory Phillips and Rawle Brancker, who a year later, in 1974, founded Brancker’s on Fontabelle; and Trident Insurance, whose origin, growth and development represented the bravado of another group of black Barbadians to venture into an industry dominated by foreign principals at the time it was established in 1979. It is not that black business was unknown to Barbados before the 1970s. Black entrepreneurs, from Stuart and Sampson at one end, Gulstone at the Crumpton Street junction, and James A. Tudor at the upper section, dominated the distributive trading sector on Roebuck Street and also operated huge village shops throughout Barbados between the 1940s and 1960s. Besides the General Bus Company (owned by H.A. Dowding, which later traded as Detco Motors), the nine other omnibus operations were owned and managed by black Barbadians: Alleyne (Federal), Birch (Progressive), Coward (Boston), Rock (Rocklyn), Tudor (Lincoln), Trotman (Diamond) among them, before partial nationalization in 1955 was completed in 1978. Some enterprises, like Guiler’s Borne Bay Rum, which competed for space on shop shelves with Bookers’ Limacol and later Alcolada, winning international awards from its plant on St Michael’s Row in the 1920s and 1930s, failed to retool and repackage and was pushed out by its competitors in the 1960s. Rollock’s on Tudor Street, the first black department store to introduce escalator services in the mid-1950s, ran into financial troubles and was bought out by K.R. Hunte, the first signal, perhaps, of real black business failure in Barbados.
In the doldrums So when THE NATION appeared in 1973, black business was in the doldrums. Inadequate capitalization, flawed management systems — including marketing — and poor public response to their offerings of goods and services, among other challenges, conspired in the failure of black
entrepreneurship. There were stories, refuted in the industry’s hierarchy, that commercial banks, because of the high failure rate of black businesses, were reluctant to provide start-up capital and were extravagant in security requirements to keep struggling black companies afloat. Small black-owned newspapers that struggled
Continued on next page.
NATION STAFF giving thanks for ten years in the business. (FP)
Forty Years Of Covering The News
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23, 2013. 15
FROM St Mary’s Row (above) to Fontabelle: Though a short distance from its first home, THE NATION has come a long way. (FPs)
Paper defying the odds From Page 14. to be solvent ad little to recommend them to serious consumers. The Truth, published by W.C. Burton Hinds, who later became Speaker of the House of Assembly, was a four-page gossip sheet, whose main readership appeal was its I’m Minding My Business” column that pried into private affairs. That was already off news-stands; so too was Dan Blackett’s Torch newspaper. The Observer, regarded at the people’s paper in the 1930s and 1940s, was an uneconomic proposition in the 1960s and 1970s, and was only continued to support the nostalgia of its publisher, Wynter Crawford, founder/leader of the West Indies Congress Party during the 1940s until 1961, when he teamed up with the Democratic Labour Party after its election victory of that year and became Minister of Trade. Other smaller black-owned newspapers and magazines mushroomed overnight, then floundered and fell by the wayside, some after only one or two publications. That was the environment in May 1973 when NATION founders met for the first time at the Press Club on Bay Street. Apart from their faith in what they were embarking upon and their determination to make the venture a success, there was little to recommend THE NATION as a black business. What it had going for it, though, was the knowledge, experience and integrity of its founding journalists and the respect other senior members of the founding group had earned as lawyers and small business people. Its marketing blitz, through brochures, flyers and bumper stickers, also excited Barbadians and that excitement was further stimulated when news teams traversed the countryside meeting prospective customers and collecting data to feature the stories and images of black Barbadians, who until then had difficulty making newspaper columns in other than negative ways. Although the founders were aware of the uncertainty ahead, the pronouncements by detractors that the newspaper would not last a year – some predicted three to six months – there were confident they were on a distance run. And although there was never any mention of “black business”, perhaps for fear of the negatives that reality may have conjured up, they were determined that what they were launching would be continued by generations of courageous black entrepreneurs yet unborn. Only time will tell. But tomorrow’s researchers and historians may well determine that The Nation Publishing Company represented the 20th century renaissance of black business in Barbados.
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Forty Years Of Covering The News
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23,2013. 3
Forty Years Of Covering The News
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18. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special
CARL MOORE (FP)
JEANETTE LAYNE-CLARK (FP)
Forty Years Of Covering The News
ROM THE TIME it rolled off the press, and into the hands, hearts and minds of Barbadians, THE NATION newspaper established a strong core of columnists, with views as varied as the colours of the rainbow and all the shades in-between. This was so different from the competition which portrayed a similar style for all the editorials, including opinion writers, that it quickly captured the attention of the public. The straight-forward opinions, sharing of personal stories, the majority of them not keeping step with the status quo and way outside the box, all added up to the early excitement and the unpredictability of the newspaper. Some writers shared knowledge because of their profession — educators, lawyers, architects, clergy, social engineers, sports experts, economists, political parties — others just had a way with words or interesting perspectives on life. Notable writers
DESMOND BOURNE (FP)
include the erudite Cameron Tudor, the tell it like it is Gladstone Holder and the legendary sports writer Tony Cozier. Readers never knew what to expect from week to week, and soon writers
created followings of fans who would seek out their favourite columnists, often communicating with them in person, by
• Continued on next page.
Forty Years Of Covering The News
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23,2013. 19
â€˘ From Page 18. letter or phone, to share their reactions. People like Harold Hoyte (Of Men And Mice), Al Gilkes (Alâ€™s Grapevine), Carl Moore, Rickey Singh (Our Caribbean), Ridley Greene, Jeanette Layne-Clark (Lickmoutâ€™ Lou), Mike King (First Word) and Dawn Gal Friday Morgan, were recognized on sight anywhere in the island â€” whether congratulated or cursed â€” and that type of relationship between columnists and readers continued through the years. The types of confrontation that occurred meant that writers had to have intestinal fortitude, as their names and faces were out there for all to target. An exception was Dear Christine, an anonymous column that invited the weak of spirit, the hurt and needy to write about their suffering. It soon developed a practical arm, with social worker and broadcaster the late Dame â€œAuntieâ€? Olga Lopes-Seale doing the legwork to give food, clothes, school uniforms, shoes and other items to adults and children through the years. The legendary column continues, giving some help and much solace to those in pain. Some columns had continuance such as the nephew of the late former Senator and
MIKE KING (FP)
RICKEY SINGH (FP) Literary Editor John Wickham passing on his space to Peter Wickham, albiet GLADSTONE HOLDER (FP) both of the gentlemen having different interests. Others left a trail of interesting columns after their death such as Tony Vanterpool who wrote From My Rocking Chair and Desmond Bourne The Antenna and the end of year specials Jivinâ€™ Around, but such unique spaces are hard to fill. Some columnists burned bright for a short while and then fizzled out, for various
reasons, others stood the test of time. Political parties were not left out either, each enjoying equal space to put forward their views. The way a particular column was born can be a story in itself. Hereâ€™s one anecdote. When Harold Hoyte interviewed Dawn Morgan back in 1979, he told her something he is known for saying: â€œAlmost everyone can write four to six pieces but few can write 50 or so a year.â€? The fiesty woman told him she would return the next day. She brought back some scraggly jottings of 165 headlines and lead sentences, and said: him â€œI can write a column for each of these, thatâ€™s over three years supply!â€? He roared
The Board of Directors, Management and Staff of Barbados Port Inc. congratulate the
Nation Publishing Inc. on this landmark achievement of your 40th Anniversary
with laughter and told her to write on womenâ€™s rights, gender issues and related humanist concerns â€“ Gal Friday was born. Many years later, after a break, she wrote New Dawn to indicate that she had taken a comedic turn on the lighter side of life. How does one get a NATION column? This is a question that has been asked through the years, but there is no one answer. Some call, some write, some are called. Crisp, well written Letters To The Editor can emerge with a column some day. One thing is certain many ask but only a few are chosen. One should work hard to keep such a hallowed spot, for others are snipping at your heels and anxious for you to slip away. There have been so many memorable writers through the years that we can only mention a few. But perhaps the worthiness of a writer is left to the reader to decide. So who is your favourite columnist? The acerbic Dick Lowdown Hoad? The inspiring Altar Call by Cheryl Harewood? The spins taken by Sherwyn Walters in Off Centre? Harry Russel â€“ still a Wild Coot? Give the newspaper some feedback and make your choices known.
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20. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special
Forty Years Of Covering The News
BY CHARLES HARDING E HAD NOT YET SETTLED in our rooms at the St James Hotel in St George’s when the telephone bells in my room sounded. The caller, Leslie Seon, was brief. “Be careful how you use these telephones. I’ll be there in a moment.” I had called Seon from the hotel’s lobby. I wanted a brief and objective assessment of the political demonstrations that had started late December 1973, pressing for the removal of Premier Eric Gairy before Independence on February 7, 1974. I trusted Seon. He was my mentor when I worked at Barbados Rediffusion. He was not only an experienced journalist/broadcaster (one of the first three Caribbean people to be trained at the British Broadcasting Corporation), but he was an honest and fearless media person. I respected his judgement. After my brief chat with Seon I called Premier Gairy. “Premier Gairy,” I told him, after introducing myself and the media house I was associated with, “I am in Grenada for the Committee of 22 demonstrations and to put your side of the conflict to the people of Barbados and the wider Caribbean. When can I have a meeting with you, sir?” “These are the usual birth pains of nationhood,” the Grenada premier declared in his typical self-assured style, either oblivious or dismissing the political implications of the civil commotion that had brought commerce to its knees in St. George’s. “I have a meeting at Gouyave tomorrow night. Why don’t you come and hear what I have to say,” he added. He did not decide on my request for a oneon-one interview but suggested, before we ended our telephone conversation, that I call and arrange to meet with Governor Dame Hilda Bynoe. When Seon arrived at the hotel he made me aware that Gairy was informed that THE NATION team, photographer Gordon Brooks and I, were in Grenada from the moment we cleared immigration at the Pearls Airport, and that my telephone calls were being monitored
at police headquarters overlooking the St James Hotel. After my call to Gairy, the police called Seon, who had helped establish the intelligence network in Grenada when he worked with Gairy’s government, and instructed him: “This journalist Charles Harding is a good fella. Tell him to be careful how he uses the telephone in Grenada.” I avoided the telephone like the plague. The calls I made after that morning of January17, 1974, were to the premier’s office trying, against distinctive odds, for that NATION interview. But I had an extensive conversation with Leslie Seon on the causes of the unrest and the brutal attack on three members of the New Jewel Movement (NJM), lawyer Maurice Bishop, educator Unison Whiteman and accountant Selwyn Strachan, by members of Gairy’s “Ton Ton Macoute” type secret police, also called the “Mongoose Gang”, at the Grenville Police Station near the airport in St Andrews, on November 18, 1973. Bishop’s head was shaved in patches with pieces of broken bottle and he was admitted to the St Joseph Mercy Hospital in Barbados with a dislocated jaw, almost a month after the beating at Grenville. When questioned about what was described some places as the “Grenville massacre”, Gairy dismissed it as a “minor scuffle”. Tens of thousands of Grenadians, including school children dressed in their various uniforms, joined the Committee of 22 protests that peaked on Saturday, January 19, when angry placard-bearing demonstrators shut down commerce and marched through St George’s, shouting invectives at Gairy and his government. Word had spread that a NATION team was in St. George’s, and young and old with grouses found us at the St James Hotel to get their stories told to the rest of the Caribbean. Members of the Mongoose Gang were visible wherever we went. No fewer than ten, at a quick count, encircled us at the Esplanade off Market Hill, when I interviewed Unison Whiteman, the Sunday night before I left Grenada. It was a policeman in uniform, who knocked at my room’s door just before 5 a.m. on January 21, to ensure
I checked out the hotel in time for my 7 a.m. flight back to Barbados — a couple hours before Rupert Bishop, Maurice Bishop’s father, was gunned down near the Careenage in St George’s. The Grenada assignment was THE NATION’S first venture outside Barbados
since its establishment the previous November. But the then weekly newspaper was paying close attention to developments in the Caribbean from its inception. The Caribbean was part of its mandate.
Continued on next page.
Tel: (246) 436-9836 • Fax: (246) 436-5628 • firstname.lastname@example.org
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From Page 20. The very first meeting of the Editorial Sub-committee that fashioned the early newspaper format and framed editorial policy determined that the Caribbean archipelago would be treated as our backyard — our close neighbour. In the absence of Reuters (later Caribbean News Agency – CANA) or Associated Press wire services, we sought and retained credible Caribbean journalists, including Jeff Hackett in Port of Spain, Trinidad; Joey Vanterpool in Roseau, Dominica, and Ricky Singh in Georgetown, Guyana, who provided reports and analyses of developments within their territories, from as early as the second edition of THE NATION on December 2, 1974. Word of our Caribbean mission and focus reached neighbouring capitals and Maurice Bishop, bruised and with a patched-up head, found THE NATION offices at St Mary’s Row, early in December to relate the tale of the NJM attack at Grenville, about a week before the inaugural edition of the weekly newspaper hit the streets in Bridgetown. Full details of the happening at Grenville were published in the December 9, 1973 edition and THE NATION kept watch on political developments in Grenada, using its news and analyses columns to help Barbadians and other Caribbean people understand what was taking place within their region. When the newspaper team visited Grenada in mid-January, 1974, THE NATION was already becoming a household name in the Eastern Caribbean. Grenadians were comfortable telling their stories to people they could trust and identify with; scribes who would tell of their agony fearlessly and with fairness. THE NATION not only flew out teams to report on Caribbean people’s distress and suffering, political and otherwise. They were also the first media people in Grenada
following the 1979 coup d’etat that ousted Eric Gairy. THE NATION men were also in St Vincent to provide the Caribbean with details of the suffering and dislocation after Soufriere’s Good Friday, 1979 eruption, and also the first in Dominica after Hurricane David in July, not only to report on the calamity that befell that Caribbean island, but to inform on the rescue efforts that took place. The newspaper covered general elections in almost every Caribbean country in the late 1970s and 1980s, through to recent times — not only reporting polling results but publishing election curtain-raisers, previews, reviews and analyses to help voters and observers elsewhere follow and
understand campaign issues. It featured the social and political change in a region still in socio-economic transition through special editorial supplements, commemorating the anniversaries of political independence. Its mandate has not changed. There is perhaps, a much clearer focus but the vision of THE NATION pioneers is the same now as it was in 1973 when there was unanimous agreement that Barbadians and their Caribbean neighbours were of one blood vein, of common historical background and although their social and economic circumstances varied, they were the same people occupying a single Caribbean space.
Forty Years Of Covering The News
22. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special
TONY BEST (FP) by TONY
ONG MAY it continue and give a lot of credit to those who founded it.”
Sir George Alleyne, chancellor of the University of the West Indies (UWI) and one of the most highly respected public figures in and out of the Caribbean, had the 40-year-old NATION newspaper in mind when he expressed his wish and articulated his well-chosen words of praise to the founders of the publication, especially Sir Fred Gollop and Harold Hoyte. Sir George, the first Caribbean health expert and administrator to lead the Pan American Health Organization back in the 1990s, didn’t stop as he reflected on THE NATION’S role and its impact on Barbados, its diaspora and on the wider Caribbean. “We must also give maximum credit to those who fund it and those who continue to support it,” was the way he put it. “Every democratic society needs an institution like THE NATION.”
Crucial link As he saw it, in the four decades of the paper’s existence and as he watched it evolve from a weekly publication to its current status as one of the English-speaking Caribbean’s leading dailies, THE NATION provides a crucial link between Barbadians at home and those nationals, like himself, who have lived and worked outside of the Caribbean for more than a quarter of a century while maintaining deep interest in the region’s welfare and the development of its people. It’s a bond, he believes, that has worked out in the public’s interest. “The stronger the connection, the more people (in the diaspora) who read about Barbados, the less they feel that they are being looked upon as outsiders to be addressed only when there is need,” said Sir George from his home in a Maryland suburb. “It makes people feel they are involved in what’s happening in the country and in the region. I wouldn’t say it’s like an umbilical cord, that is too strong, but a nice way to put it is the link Barbados needs. “I am also appreciative of THE NATION’S coverage of things at the UWI. I appreciate that,” he was quick to add. The bridge to which the university chancellor referred was underscored by Jacqui Workman’s recollections of the final decades of her grandfather’s life in New Jersey. Stanley Garner, who died last December at the age of 84 years, she recalled, “believed in THE NATION as an important and independent source of information about what was happening in Barbados”. “His week wasn’t complete if he didn’t get a copy of the paper. If necessary, he get into a cab and go every week to newspaper distributor on (Plainfield’s) Front Street and buy copies of the paper’s edition, return home and read it aloud, almost every story in THE NATION,” she said. “You could ask him any question about Barbados and he would be able to answer it quickly and confidently, relying on the information in THE NATION. We miss that experience now he is no longer with us. He believed in what he read.”
PROFESSOR KEITH SANDIFORD (FP) SIR GEORGE ALLEYNE (FP) Workman, an events manager for a real estate firm in Plainfield, a city of at least 50 000 people who just elected Adrian Mapp, a Barbadian, as their new mayor for the next four years, spoke about her own experience in the 26 years she has been residing and working in New Jersey. “What the paper does very well is to prevent us from living in a vacuum in this section of the US,” she said. Randy Brathwaite, who was born eight years after THE NATION first appeared on Barbados’ streets but has been living in the United States for 13 years, said he considered the paper’s online edition to be essential daily reading.
while keeping Barbadians at home “on top of what’s happening in politics, hard news and the views on developments in the Caribbean.”
‘Educational function’ “I read THE NATION because of its educational function,” said Browne, whose journalism career began in Barbados in the late 1960s at the now defunct Barbados Daily News. “Many of us in Houston and other parts
of the United States depend on it for information that enables us to be aware of things that are going on in Barbados and how Bajans in the Diaspora are faring. That’s something THE NATION does very well.” As Barbados’ honorary consul in Texas, Dr Browne thinks staying on top of things Barbadian is essential for him as he performs duties as a representative of his birthplace in America’s south-west. “You must be in a position to answer questions about Barbados and the Caribbean,” he said. “That’s where THE NATION comes in.” Dr Keith Sandiford, professor emeritus of history at the University of Manitoba and a leading cricket sociologist and statistician in the world, recalled the time in 1975 when he wrote an article extolling Sir Garfield Sobers’ skills, not simply as a cricketer but putting him as a history making public figure. “I wrote the article on Sir Garry and I sent it to several publications in the Caribbean, Canada and elsewhere,” he recalled. “I sought to put Sir Garry in a historical context that he deserved. I sent it to several media outlets but THE NATION and the Winnipeg Free Press were the only ones that ran it. Indeed, THE NATION serialized it. My efforts were not in vain. For that I am grateful.”
THE UNIVERSITY OF THE WEST INDIES CAVE HILL CAMPUS
‘Living, breathing connection’ “THE NATION is the living, breathing connection to Barbados for those of us who live, work or study abroad and wish to be kept informed about developments back home,” said the Wall Street attorney who is also president of the Council of Barbadian Organizations in New York, the umbrella body of 13 Barbadian associations. “Every morning, I go onto the Internet and read the BBC News, CNN, The New York Times, the Financial Times of London and THE NATION, not necessarily in that order,” Brathwaite explained. “It serves the core function of being a paper of record for us in the diaspora. It provides a historical account of what is taking place at home and it does it very well.” Professor Louis Browne, a recently retired chairman of the Department of Radio, Television and Film at Texas Southern University in Houston, agreed with both Sir George and Brathwaite and fully understood why the late Mr Garner felt the way he did. “The role of a paper like THE NATION is that of a unifying force, an independent voice and source of information about events at home and in the Caribbean,” said Dr Browne, who has trained thousands of broadcast and print journalists across the United States in the past 35 to 40 years. “I have THE NATION on my home page so that when I turn on my computer, THE NATION is the first news source that comes up. That’s how important I consider it to be as a source of information.” The communications expert, a graduate of The Lodge School, traced his deep interest in the paper as a reliable news organization to its “essential role” in linking the diaspora
The Nation Newspaper
40 years of publishing
Forty Years Of Covering The News
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23,2013. 23
by TYRONE ROACH
IVING IN THE UK can be a lonely existence, and even more so if you were born abroad and have ended up here for whatever reason. One of the most important ways of maintaining links with your country's nationals and culture is to attend the events of the many organizations of the country of your birth. The Caribbean community is one of the forerunners of these groups. In the early â€™60s and â€™70s, if you wanted to meet anyone from your homeland apart from work, the only means was via places like the West Indian student centre in Earls Court or the many cricket matches, excursions and dances.
THE NATION on display picture. (Pictures by Tyrone Roach)
These groups are usually run by well-meaning individuals who volunteer their services and sometimes at their own expense, to ensure that some of these functions take place. There are some individuals who have ulterior motives, but the majority do it out of love for their people and national fervour. The main dance was always in celebration of your countryâ€™s independence and it was where you would meet folks you didnâ€™t even know were in the country, students and even those who were on holiday. It was also a chance to experience some home cooking and dance to the hits from home. During this period, getting food stuff from home was a rare and an expensive commodity and one of the most popular means was through the generosity of someone returning from holiday back home who would consent to bringing a parcel from a relative or associate for you. Nowadays, the streets of the major cities have sectors where the produce of the world is openly displayed; all the ground provisions from the various nations are there. In fact, it is also an educational experience. How many among us knew that were so many varieties of sweet potatoes and yams until you travelled abroad? The Barbadian community is very far flung and diverse and as the earliest immigrants
Congratulations to the Nation Publishing Company on your 4Oth Anniversary
MANCHESTER BAJANS on the dance floor AT LEFT: Caribbean ground provisions in a London market. (Pictures by Tyrone Roach) up from Barbados. settled in the industrial areas outside Dalrymple said: â€œIn those days I use of London such as Ipswich, Huddersfield, to collect them from the airport and use Sheffield, Leeds, Reading, Birmingham and various methods to get them distributed. Coventry those who settled in London were I used to send THE NATION to Leeds mostly located in areas closer to the work Manchester, Birmingham and Coventry but locations as many worked on the transport then it got too much for me with my work and systems and in hospitals. studies, and as I didn't have enough time, It is true that it is now much easier I passed it on to others.â€? to access news from home via the Internet, The paper is an important link to home and but those in the Barbadian community without it is integral to the Barbadian community this facility can and still rely on the UK as its readers were able to keep up to date BARBADOS NATION NEWS edition. with the latest news and also keep in touch This became a reality in 1973 when Steve with what is going on around them. Those Brathwaite, marketing manager for THE who lived very far out would arrange for NATION and a young Barbadian journalist it to be posted to them and a substantial Henderson Dalrymple, New Musical Express, amount of people did. negotiated bringing the papers
Congratulations! Congratulations Congratulations on on your your milestone! milestone! Your Your dedication dedication to to excellence excellence will will secure secure future future success. success.
G4S congratulates Publishing as they The Coleridge and Nation Parry School celebratcelebrate their 40th Anniversary! ing
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G4S Secure Solutions (Grenada) Limited Maurice Bishop Highway, Grand Anse, St. Georgeâ€™s 8IP Âˆ*E\ Website: www.g4s.bb Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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Forty Years Of Covering The News
24. November 23, 2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special
First Barbadian newspaper with full colour comics in 1977. The first Barbadian company to stage night cricket – October 25, 1980 The first company to stage the largest cycling event – Nation Fun Ride (1991). The first company to stage the largest walking event – Nation Fun Walk (1988).
The first edition of THE NATION, with a projected pagination of 16 pages, ended up at 48 pages and a print run of 20 000, instead of the originally planned 10 000. THE NATION was the first Barbadian newspaper with full colour comics (1977). THE NATION, which provided extensive coverage of regional events, beginning with the pre-Independence disturbances in Grenada in February 1974, was the first
Barbadian newspaper to send a reporter and photographer to cover a cricket tour of England (1984). THE NATION was the first Barbadian newspaper to fully computerize its operations (1995). THE NATION, first published in November 1973, reached news-stands 243 years after the Barbados Gazette, the first newspaper to be published in the Caribbean.
HER EXCELLENCY (Dame Nita Barrow) – JUNE 7, 1990 THE NATION, since its inception as a weekly publication in 1973, has demonstrated it is not only a newspaper of record but also one with a deep sense of history. This was reflected in its edition of June 7, 1990 that heralded, on its front page, the installation of Barbados’ first female Governor General Dame Nita Barrow. Dame Nita was sister of the country’s first Prime Minister Errol Barrow, who died in office about three years before her appointment as head of state. Besides its front page coverage, the June 7 edition also devoted three inside pages to further record the historic installation.
Most memorable FRIDAY, AUGUST 21, 2009
BARBADOS, WI BDS$2.25 St Vincent EC$2.50 and Grenada EC$4
SEE PAGES 3,4 5, 13, 32, 33, 46 & 47
Hurdler wins Barbados’ first championships gold medal BRATH-TAKING: Barbados finally has its first World Championships track and field medal – and it’s gold. Ryan M. Brathwaite, a 21-year-old from Hillaby, St Andrew, delivered the performance of a lifetime to snatch a dramatic photo-finish victory in the men’s 100-metre hurdles at the Olympic Stadium in Berlin yesterday. Brathwaite hit the first hurdle, but ran a clean race the rest of the way and nabbed the gold with a dip at the line to finish in 13.14 seconds – a new national record. It was such a tight finish that also involved Americans Terrance Trammell and David Payne, that it took about a minute before the result was confirmed. When it was announced that Brathwaite was the winner, it led to triumphant celebrations locally among those following the action on the Internet and radio. (AP Picture)
ON TOP OF THE
Please see Page 3.
ON TOP OF THE WORLD (Ryan Brathwaite) – AUGUST 21, 2009
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The headline dominating the front page in bold red: On Top Of The World was authentic – an automatic choice for the front page of a national newspaper, following Ryan Brathwaite’s sensational photo-finish 100-metre hurdles run at the 2009 World Championships in Berlin. The front page presentation also captured the celebratory mood of Barbadians, who followed the championships via Internet and radio and burst into revelry when photo-finish cameras awarded the gold medal position to the 21-year-old Barbadian from Hilaby, St Andrew. It was Barbados’ first gold medal at the World Championships.
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Forty Years Of Covering The News
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23, 2013. 25
THE OVERWHELMING SUPPORT of friends and advertisers has made our journey these last 40 years possible. We appreciate the help given by all who cooperated with our advertising staff so willingly and who have promised their continuing support in the years to come. We especially thank all of the advertisers without whose support the production of this anniversary special would not have been possible. Thank you one and all. i.
J. CAMERON TUDOR’S
PERSONAL COMMENT on Page 7
MAY 18, 1989.
CIRCULATED COPIES: 26 117
All secondary schools to go fully computer by William Bradshaw AILY NA11ON THE STEELY CLANG of the ile cabinet will be replaced by he click-beep of computers in econdary school offices islandide. The announcement of pend ng computerisation was made y Minister of Education Cyril alker, who said that not only ould Government-owned sec ndary schools benefit, but the 5 private secondary institu ions as well.
The minister was delivering the keynote address at the launŁhing of Digital Informa tion Systems DIS at the Grand Barbados Hotel yester day. DIS is a wholly-owned subsi diary of the Barbados External Telecommunication Limited, and has been established to market and sell computerware in Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean. Walker said the tenders for the. installation of the first 95 computers would be an nounced shortly, adding that
lifted from milk RICE CONTROLS have been ifted from sweetened, con ensed and evaporated milk. That means milk will coØt ore, but even merchants, con acted last night, said they can ot figure out by how much. In announcing this, the Mi istry of Trade, Industry and Commerce also said the price of animal and poultry feeds ould go up by two per cent. With respect to milk, the mi istry pointed to a "very rapid"
Seibert needs money for
studies BARBADIANS are once again eing called on to help one of he island’s most promising
gone were the days when offi cials at the ministry should have to sift through piles of papers for information in order to make decisions. "Making use of this kind of equipment in the administra tion of sclools will make the the job easier once they are utilised in the proper manner. ‘Each secondary school will have its own administrative system, and if the schools are operating as they should, the.. data should come in a simpler form to be used by the mini stry." The minister said the equip ping of the schools would be an. ongoing process. He said com puters would not only be used to teach students the. basics, but would be fully integrated in the education process in order to train students for the. in dustrial sector.
escalation on the world Barbados1 added the minis market, citing an increase of ter, had not yet begun to fully almost $12 in the landed price utilise the technology. He said of condensed milk between Ja computers could be used for nuary 1 this year, when prices basic arithmetic as’well as for were last fixed, and the end of the teaching of foreign lan Marci. guages. "Based on current world In his brief address, Trevor market trends," the ministry Clarke, general manager of said, "the rapid upward move BET said DIS was established ment, over which the Govern partly because Barbadian com ment has no control, will con panies were calling more and tinue for some time and it would be extremely difficult to more on BET for assistance in attempt to set a new controlled their computer maintenance. price almost every time a ship He said that in the ‘80s, com ment is received. puters had become a key factor "It has therefore been de in the growth and development cided instead that for the time of the economy. being, the price of sweetened, condensed and evaporated Clarke pointed out that BET milk will be arrived at accord had made an investment in ing to mark-ups," said the mi training and experience as well nistry. as in human resources and dol As for feed increases, the mi lars by establishing DIS. His nistry noted recent "steep" in- company, he said, was commit creases in the price of grain on ted to leading Barbados into the international market, the information age through which now make it "uneco the continuing improvement of nomic" for the companies to efficiency, and the assisting of produce feeds at the current business executives in making price. timely decisions.
thletes. Seibert Straughn, who broke he Texaco Games 400 metres ecord over the weekend, needs money to help him through the oming semester at Murray tate University, Kentucky, nited States. The Seibert Straughn ppeal Account No. 5011868 is till open at the Marhill Street ranch of the Canadian Impe TEACHERS at Belmont Prim ial Bank of Commerce, and ary School downed chalk for here are plans to hold a fund- the second day yesterday, pro aising event before Straughn testing work conditions. eaves the island on Monday. They say construction work Late last year and earlier underway at the school is da his year, the Bussa Founda maging their health and safety ion launched a fund to initially and the children’s. et Straughn into the Amer Parents of children attend can university. Just enough ing flelmont Primary School oney was raised for this exer joined in the protest yesterday. ise, but Straughn still is in One parent called for the eed of more funds to complete school to be closed until con is studies. struction was done and an-
No lessons again at Belmont School other said the situation showed bad planning on the part of the ministry. "This work should have been carried out during .the vaca tion," she charged. Chief Education Officer in the Ministry of Education, Ralph Boyce, visited the school and an official at the Barbados Union of Teachers BUT said they were monitoring the situ ation.
BUSSA TAKES *A BATH
Forty Years Of Covering The News
26. November 23,2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special THE NATION PUBLISHING CO. LIMITED has over the years enjoyed healthy support from advertising clients, interacting with them directly or through their representative agencies. In this interview, veteran advertising consultant Mike Williams shares his thoughts on THE NATION.
country and for the populace to hear and read the opinions of all the people, rather than being restricted to a narrow point of view.
Does it surprise you that the company has reached this milestone? It does not surprise me that the venture succeeded, because the key players had placed their own hard earned money on the table and they would do all in their power to make it work. My only fear was that they did not have the business experience and I know that this business needs more than ideas – it calls for business acumen and a large measure of common sense. The group got lucky and found a godfather in Ken Gordon who guided and shaped their direction and prevented them from getting into serious trouble. Then they had a number of well wishers and supporters like my dear friend Chris Blackman and Grenville Phillips who, along with [Sir] Fred Gollop, vetted the pages and reduced the risks of libel. From my days at the Advocate I learnt that exciting stories and headlines could sail you too far into the wind and land you in the law courts. This used to annoy me as I was generating the funds and these fellows in editorial could wipe out the gains. My only regret with THE NATION is that I was deprived, as head of an advertising agency, of holding shares in the venture. This was one of the rulings made by the media controlling body at the time in an effort to prevent any conflict of interest.
As an advertising consultant representing a varied clientele, when did you start to buy advertising space in THE NATION? Our agency (Castagne Marketing as it was known then) bought space in THE NATION from its inception. We had confidence that Barbadians would have purchased the first issue, even if only out of sheer curiosity and we knew that the circulation would be substantial. Our clients’ messages would therefore reach a broad target audience.
What sort of business, products or services did the clients seek to advertise? The advertising covered a wide range of products and services, from Cave Shepherd & Co., a large retail store, to Caribbean Airways offering the lowest fares to London via Luxembourg and in-between there we had clients like Flick Pest Control and the Correia’s Jewellery Store.
Were there any clients that expressed reservations about your intention to place ads in the first NATION? Naturally, there was the expected speculation about the “new boys on the block” and whether the venture would last or not, particularly following the demise of the Daily News some five years earlier. Clients had faith in our professional judgement and they were very happy with the results they were getting under our marketing direction.
Did you think the paper would be a fly-by-night phenomenon? I prayed that it would not be a fly-by-night operation as I had witnessed the pain in persons like Jimmy Cozier from the closure of the Daily News and both Jimmy and Felix Kerr shared the offices we had with Pat Castagne at River Road. I knew that it would always be more healthy to have two newspapers in our small
What would you say were the prime contributors to THE NATION’S success? The ability to sniff out a news story in the making and the vast cooperation and help from the general public in alerting you when something was happening.
Could you identify any innovations during the formative years that impressed upon you that the paper
would be there for the long haul? I must plead guilty to playing a major role in pushing some of the innovations that unfolded. It was not the intention in the formative stages to sell advertising on the front page, but I had developed this position for Correia’s with the Advocate and influenced it to be adopted by THE NATION. Similarly, it was not the intention to sell the centre pages of the newspaper as Harold Hoyte had grand plans to use this strictly for impactful editorial displays until I convinced Wilfred Field, who I had a hand in moulding, that I needed the centre spread for Caribbean Airways to dramatically promote the lowest fares imaginable to London and we had the airplane flying out of the page at you with an unbelievable price. We used the newspaper to force market prices of the competitors downwards and at the same time offered the opportunity for the hotels in Barbados to remain open year-round and keep all their workers employed. We changed the tourism market from seasonal to a year-round operation.
Over the last four decades what has impressed you most regarding THE NATION’S value as an advertising medium? The circulation has climbed year after year covering very wide demographics. Some people who were hard-core conservatives found that they could
MIKE WILLIAMS (GP) not afford not to know what was published in THE NATION and the ordinary simple folks were hooked on wanting to know what was happening in their communities. The stories had something that would appeal to all types of people and this provided us with an ideal vehicle to reach our diversified markets.
What did THE NATION do right to guarantee it of your continued support? Your team always listened to reason and went out of their way to offer our clients good value for money. They supported our editorial public relations and were not unreasonable in trying to maintain balance in their stories. Anytime there was some story carried which was not in our best interest, the editors would publish our side of the story so that the readers could come to informed conclusions. I wish you all well in the future ahead with the changing technology.
Forty Years Of Covering The News
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23,2013. 27
delight of many. Known for its generosity, the Nation Publishing Co. Limited has worked with corporate Barbados and the late Olga Lopes Seale, who previously headed the Needy Children’s Fund, to give assistance to the less fortunate. Children’s homes across the island, Verdun House, the destitute, sick and afflicted have all been beneficiaries of THE NATION’S generosity. This company has made and continues to make its mark on a national level. On October 25, 1980, during the period when world-acclaimed broadcaster, journalist and cricket authority Tony Cozier was part of THE NATION’S editorial team, he was given the go ahead by the then Editor-in-Chief Harold Hoyte, to make arrangements for a synthetic pitch to be imported from England to host Barbados’ first Night Cricket at the National Stadium. Cozier was also able to convince the members of the Worcestershire County Cricket Club, who were touring at the time, to play against a local cricket team. This event was a resounding success and Nation Publishing was able to donate $10 000 to the St Catherine and Maple cricket clubs, the Salvation Army, the Association for the Blind and Deaf, the National United Association for the Blind, The Soroptimist International, the Challenor School, the Barbados Council for The Handicapped, the Association of Parents of the Handicapped, the Thelma Vaughan Memorial Home, the Barbados Legion, the Barbados Red Cross and Friends of the Lazaretto. As part of its tenth anniversary celebrations, the then young newspaper company also sponsored THE NATION Stakes on November 12, 1983 at the Garrison Savannah. The nine furlong race was open to locally Continued on next page.
STORIES BY CHERYL HAREWOOD
HROUGHOUT its 40 years of publishing Barbados’ leading newspapers, the Nation Publishing Co. Limited has never waned in its bid to be a good corporate citizen, or failed to give back to a community which has supported it through thick and thin. Working with charitable organizations such as the Rotary Club, the Lions Club, Kiwanis and many others, Nation Publishing has always gone beyond its call and duty in its bid to sponsor events, help families, charitable organizations, schools and individuals alike. One of the company’s most outstanding and successful sponsorships has been that of professional hurdler Andrea Blackette, who won gold at the Commonwealth Games in Malaysia in 1998 to become the first Barbadian ever to win a gold medal at this event. As recorded in Against The Odds, the book which chronicles THE NATION’S story during the company’s first 25 years: “THE NATION has sponsored Blackett, who by bringing gold and glory to the little 24x4 island of Barbados had also placed an enduring accolade on the newspaper’s public outreach programme that supported her. “For NATION management, Andrea’s feat symbolized what the paper stood for — a dream, hard work, persistence, achievement.” Back in 1984, THE NATION had also backed another winner; this time during the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. He was 400-metre runner Elvis Forde, who reached the semi-final and went on to the final of the 4x400 metres relay. His feat marked the first time Barbados had progressed to an Olympic Final. Backing winning tournaments and various events, at both the national and community levels, has long been
T Dear Christine, I have been married just four months and since our honeymoon I somehow can’t keep up with my husband’s sex demands. He is always wanting to make love, but I get tired as I have an all-day job besides my housework. How can I limit my love-making without hurting or offending him? Signed: Wearied Wife
the hallmark of this company, whose slogan for over 35 years was All The Paper For All The People. This was replaced in 2012 with Your News, Your Time, Your Way to reflect the new dynamics of the media industry and the commitment by THE NATION to accordingly deliver its news and information in a multichannel, multi-platform format.
One of the company’s means of meeting and interfacing with Barbadians at large had been through bandwagons, the first of which was held in November 1983 to mark the company’s tenth anniversary. During this year’s 40th Anniversary celebrations, THE NATION family returned to the streets to stage another successful bandwagon, much to the
G E G I ICA EM NG MS RE URI L C EN • E •IN ALA RE ON T• NE FR R PA TR ELE RG AR Y M ED ER IR AC C RE •TR TIN TRIC AN AI PA AN G• A A RL IR M S C C F O OW O •T ON O T N ER DI RAD RM OR SE GE TION E S ER R RE CU NE TO EP I N FIR RIT RAT G• RE AI E A Y S ION PO & M R WE Y AI L • O S S R- AR CO M TEM ECU R GE GE ND SY S• R N ME IT ST FIR ITY S CO NT ION EM E A S I NT LA N • E G I L RA EC •P NFR R TR OW A ICA E RE LC RG ON EN TR
HE DATE was Sunday, January 13, 1974. It was on that day that Barbadians woke up to their first Dear Christine column in the then two-month-old NATION newspaper. On that day, three letters appeared with each writer lamenting some “love-related” issue. Another writer was more precise in her correspondence. She simply asked: “Dear Christine, What do I say to my mother’s boyfriend who keeps after me.” Since January 1974, the Dear Christine column went on to become the most widely read column to be utilized by men, women and children. While it started as an advice column, Dear Christine expanded its focus, becoming an outlet for those in need of comfort, financial, physical and other social needs. Today it a vehicle for those in need, and is even used as a sounding board for those who seek to put national issues in the spotlight. In fact, Dear Christine has been a tool for identifying many social ills within our society and understanding the several needs of those among us. In many cases, Dear Christine has responded, joining forces with corporate Barbados and kind-hearted individuals to assist the less fortunate and helping in the fight to bring about positive change. To say that the column has moved significantly from simply providing advice to undertaking a hands-on approach to problem-solving, is tantamount to an understatement. Today, Barbadians continue to wake up to a “refreshing cup” of Dear Christine from Monday to Thursday. Issues have not changed much over the years. The saying that people will always be people best explains why some issues are mostly similar and why writers today, as they were of the past, still open up about their various plights and problems.
ANDREA BLACKETT receiving her gold medal and congratulations from a Commonwealth Games official shortly after winning the 400-metre hurdles final. (FP)
th 40 Anniversary
ongrats to the NATION
NEIGHBOURS, FRIENDS & BAJANS TOO!
Bajan people, pride,
TMR - For over 50 years the people you know and trust
integrity, service TMR - For products of top quality backed by unrivalled service
TMR - Proud, 100% Bajan owned company and it shows in everything we do.
POWER UP - COOL DOWN
• Fontabelle, St. Michael • Website: www.tmr.bb
Forty Years Of Covering The News
28. November 23,2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special
From Page 27. bred horses. There were also other significant events that year, including the Best Of Canada show which featured Andrew and Donna Best, Carlyn Leacock, The Draytons Two, The Merrymen and Lew Jiggs Kirton.” Over the years, new and exciting
publications also hit the scene, as the company sought to diversify its products and its presentation of news and information to the community. On September 10, 1979, the International Year Of The Child, the Junior Nation, a newspaper which showcased and highlighted much of the work of primary and secondary school students was
HAROLD HOYTE during the Best of Canada 10th anniversary music concert (FP)
launched. Its editor was John Wickham, who later became a member of the Senate and THE NATION’S Literary Editor. Seven years later, on November 7, 1986, THE NATION brought smiles to the faces of Barbadians with its introduction of the first Cute Kids Competition. Happy faces of children were splashed across THE NATION’S pages as parents responded to this competition which is now listed among the company’s top outreach competitions. As its contribution to the island’s tourism industry, Nation Publishing also launched The Visitor, a tourist publication, on March 5, 1979. This publication was later replaced by Friends Magazine which was subsequently rebranded and is published today as Explore Our Isle — Barbados. On September 18, 1996, the company printed its first Workbook, geared towards helping to equip primary school children for the Common Entrance Examination. This valuable tool has helped significantly in this regard and is still utilized by schools as a teaching and examination guide. The Better Health Magazine, which has won numerous awards
THOUSANDS OF BARBADIANS and even visitors have supported the Nation Fun Walk through the years. (FP) (1996) and Healthy Lifestyle since its introduction to Barbadians Movement Fest (2004). on April 25, 1998, has gone The NATION Fun Walk, the on to become the island’s top oldest of THE NATION events, magazine on health and health-related issues. Indeed, Nation is hosted annually in celebration of the company’s November 23 Publishing has always preached anniversary. It attracts more than a healthy lifestyle. Through its 10 000 participants, caters to people sponsorship and outreach, the of all ages and creates a fun-filled, company has promoted a better relaxing and family-oriented wholesome life for Barbadians at atmosphere. At the recently held large through such events as the NATION Funathlon (Fun Run and NATION Fun Walk (1988), NATION Fun Ride (1991) the Continued on next page. Healthy Lifestyle Extravangaza
Forty Years Of Covering The News
From Page 28. Walk) on November 17, the Fun Walk would have marked its 25th anniversary. The Nation Fun Ride, the largest of its kind in Barbados, has grown in popularity over the years and has raised substantial amounts of money for many non-profit organizations and service clubs. The Healthy Lifestyle Extravaganza, billed as the Caribbean’s largest health fair, attracted a record of over 25 000 in 2003. This event provided all and sundry with a wealth of health information, an extensive range of health services, along with fitness aids and programmes, free tests for diabetes, cholesterol, sugar level, high blood pressure, HIV/AIDS and more. A significant feature of this event, was the lectures given by health specialists on various topics. One of the company’s prime awards has been the establishment of the Romelle Primus Award For Bravery which was launched on July 21, 1999, in association with the Kiwanis Club of Bridgetown. In was established in honour of the former St Leonard’s Boys’ School student and member of the school’s football team, who lost his life in 1997 while attempting to save others. Six people died during this tragedy, referred to as the Brighton Beach drownings. This award was renamed the Romelle Primus Award For Bravery And Human Kindness in 2003. Nation Publishing was also the creator of Green Expo (2000), the Lifetime Achievement Award In The Visual Arts (2001) and the CLICO/NATION Teacher Of The Year Award (2003). In addition to events, Nation Publishing has always sought to open up the pages of its publications to those with personal or national concerns. Over the years, columns such as Dear Christine, Action Line and It Matters To Maria have seen countless concerns being addressed and needs met – whether it’s been the mother seeking to feed and clothe her children, the elderly couple, man or woman in need of a home or the parents calling on the community to assist with a medical bill. In 2011, THE NATION also introduced NATION Talkback, a community town hall meeting, which was intended to allow the average person to weigh in and offer suggestions on key local issues. Topics featured have included The Rising Cost Of Health Care – a top priority for Barbados; Is The Church Losing Society Or Is Society losing the Church? and General Elections . . . Who should Run The Affairs Of The Country? Additional NATION initiatives included the establishment of the John Wickham Scholarship, in honour of former author, Junior Nation Editor and Literary Editor of THE NATION, John Wickham, who was also a widely read columnist, former editor of Bim magazine and a well respected figure in Caribbean literature. Wickham, who also served as an Independent Senator in the Upper House, was the son of the late Clennell Wickham, himself a leading journalist. The John Wickham Scholarship was created by Nation Publishing in 2004 in Wickham’s honour and memory and recognizes the outstanding work of students of literature at the Barbados Community College. In addition, since its inception, Nation Publishing has built
INTRODUCED IN 1990, the Nation Fun Ride became one of the largest events of its kind. (FP)
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23, 2013. 29
its business on forming and maintaining strong relationships and making a meaningful contribution to the community in which it operates. This is why the sponsorship of the Elsa Goveia Memorial Lecture series, which begun in 1996, has been important to the organization and cements the company’s commitment to education, the development of our people and by extension our country. The late Elsa Goveia was a Caribbean educator. Truly, Nation Publishing has provided 40 years of caring to Barbadians at large. Whether it has been capturing the true essence of Crop Over in magazine form or providing a platform for discussion, Nation Publishing has been driven
HARRY HUSBANDS (left) and David Tyrone White (right) posing with their Romelle Primus awards and Eula May White, the elderly woman whom they rescued two years ago. (FP)
by creativity and keeping its pulse on the community at large. It would require much space to pen all the company’s outreach and social programmes over the years. However, one thing remains true; Nation Publishing continues to have a heart for the nation and the nation at heart.
Forty Years Of Covering The News
30. November 23,2013. SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special
UST AS MANY on the outside can testify of the caring nature of the management of the Nation Publishing Co. Limited, those who work within the confines of this company can concur. Nation Publishing has always been a good employer. Indeed from its early years, it was not unusual for management, particularly the then President Harold Hoyte, to not only listen to the woes and concerns of staff, but provide the means in which to help. During the early days, his office became an open door for assistance, comfort and encouragement. When current management, headed by Chief Executive Officer and Publisher,Vivian-Anne Gittens, took over the leadership of the company, she seemingly took up the baton of paying attention to the needs of staff, while performing her role as head of the organization. Management has always sought to meet the needs of its staff from a health, financial, physical, educational, emotional and even spiritual view point. Numerous incentive schemes and awards aimed at recognizing staff for their sterling contributions have been developed through the years, and staff have enjoyed the financial and other benefits of a company which has always maintained good communication with their labour representative, the Barbados Workers’ Union. In addition, with interest in the financial development of employees and their families, both management and staff joined forces back in 1983 to form the Barbados Media Co-operative Credit Union which was registered on November 1, 1983, in accordance with the Cooperative Societies Act, Cap 378. This financial lending institution was started at a time when management had become accustomed to accommodating numerous staff loans and felt that by establishing a credit union, both management and staff would be empowered to save some of their earnings while having their financial needs met. Health wise, as well as providing a platform for staff involvement in corporate health-related events such as the Healthy Lifestyle Extravaganza, Nation Fun Walk and Nation Fun Ride, staff benefits from regular cholesterol, blood sugar, weight and blood pressure checks and scheduled health lectures, through the company’s association with the Barbados Association of Retired Nurses. To date, management’s greatest investment in the health of its employees was witnessed ten years ago during Nation Publishing’s 30th anniversary when staff members were presented with an ultra-modern, fully equipped, air-conditioned gym, complete with instructors. But it did not stop there. Management further invited each staff member to extend an invitation to one family member or friend to utilize the gym’s facility, for a nominal fee. Today, many companies and individuals alike still marvel at this significantly kind gesture which allows staff to train and exercise during and after business hours. Nation Publishing also seeks to provide training for its staff or encourage them to further their education. The first major journalism course for aspiring journalists, engineered by then Editor-in-Chief Harold Hoyte, took place in 1983 when management teamed up with members of the World Press Freedom Committee and retired North American Editor John Leard to host an extensive, four-month course of study. Its purpose was to better equip and expose young journalists to the field of journalism. Most participants went on to make their mark in the journalistic world. The extent to which the company places emphasis on staff training was evident when long-standing member of staff and former senior training officer Caroline Adamson was appointed Head of Training and Development in 2012. The Training and Development Department is today committed to employee development. The department works closely with its partners to ensure employees benefit from every training opportunity offered, including facilitating the granting of leave to staff desirous of attending trade union courses at the Barbados Workers’ Union Labour College. As a corporate member of the Barbados Institute of Management and Productivity, Nation Publishing also ensures that staff benefit from discounted fees, provided by this learning institution, and seeks grants on the behalf of staff, through organizations such as the Technical and Vocational Education and Training Council. In any organization, both management and staff become susceptible to the loss of co-workers, personal or corporate tragedy. By engaging the services of Network Services Centre,
management has provided a means of support for employees in need of counselling and prayer support during such times. By facilitating and participating in in-house worship and prayer sessions, management has also thrown their support behind employees, another indication that the company lives up to its motto: The Nation Cares.
A GIFT well put to use: NATION staff working out at their gym. (FP)
Forty Years Of Covering The News
SATURDAY SUN Anniversary Special. November 23, 2013. 31
Laughter the best . . . Nation style
HEIR DRAWINGS and witty comments have graced the pages of THE NATION newspapers over the years, offering humorous perspectives on the issues of the day. Yes, we are referring to the cartoonists that bring you the characters that a many of you have grown to love. Here we feature a few favourites from two of our more popular contributors, the late Winston Jordan and Guy Oneal.
Printed and published by THE NATION PUBLISHING CO. LIMITED, Fontabelle, St. Michael, Barbados. Telephone: (246) 430-5400.
Published on Nov 25, 2013
The Nation Newspapers' 40th Anniversary Commemorative Supplement, highlighting the early history of The Nation and some of the newspaper’s i...