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Today’s Scripture

www.themontserratreporter.com

The psalmist wrote, “Into your hands I commit my spirit; deliver me, LORD, my faithful God.” - Psalm 31:5 (NIV)

Procurement 2012 rules repealed? Why? Vol. XXVIII No. 25

Week Ending Friday, August 09, 2013

Price $3.00

One of Montserrat’s leading contractor called it “shocking”, that the Government of Montserrat (GoM) has taken the decision to repeal the Statutory Rules and Orders (SRO) No. 11 of 2012 The Public Finance and Management Procurement Rules 2012, which was amended by SRO No. 17 of 2012. declined sending us further with the suggestion to ask someone in the Ministry of Finance. One officer however ventured to say that it is because of the number of procurement matters that have landed the government in court. Meanwhile the information while not specific said the Rules were deficient and need a rethink.

Procurement Regulations repealed

by Bennette Roach His Excellency Governor Adrian Davis who left the island for his annual vacation last Saturday revealed this when asked earlier in the week. He confirmed, “Cabinet did indeed take a decision to repeal the 2012

procurement regulations,” but declined to give the rationale for the decision made by Cabinet led by Premier Meade, and for which he is chairman. TMR eventually obtained information after two other cabinet members

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Above: Premier Reuben T. Meade Inset: Governor Adrian Davis

The senior cabinet member told TMR that they tried making amendments but found several deficiencies. “We tr ied making amendments,” he noted as he continued, “but I think there were a number of things that were deficient the procurement legislation was deficient and when you have a law as rigid as that there are allot of institutional things and procedures and documents supporting that kind of legislation like that, so they just need to rethink it.” He concluded following discussion, “I would say that there needs to be amend-

ment to the legislation and it needed further work and probably that’s what will happen. He revealed when it was suggested that sources had informed that GoM was about to spend $70,000.00 to re-write the legislation, the funding for the work would come from European Union technical support to Montserrat. DFID had offered support in training when they critiqued GoM’s capacity in carrying out the Procurement Regulations and guidelines. “This work could be assisted by STTC and will be supported by DFID if a request is made,” the UK funding agency had written in the Aide Memoire cited next. It is correct that since the Procurement Rules came into being there have been several challenges and TMR have been highlighting that these are because of the difficulty and the deep propensity of the government to simply, not follow rules. The Governor at one time referred to it as possibly

cont’d. on page 12

Anti-money laundering serious business...pg 2

Indian High Commissioner farewell...pg 6

New Comms & Works home...pg 3

MCC records best ever CAPE results...pg 7

PetroCaribe rates to go up...pg 4

Kids Korner...pg 8

LOANS TO MAKE YOUR LIFE MORE COMFORTABLE!

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Enquire about interest rates from our Loans Department. www.bankofmontserrat.ms (664) 491-3843


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Friday, August 09, 2013

Anti-money laundering and combatting terrorist financing is serious business for Montserrat The Financial Services Commission (FSC) in Montserrat staged a one-day consultation at the Cultural Centre, regarding Anti-Money Laundering (AML) and Combating Terrorist Financing (CTF) on July 17, 2013. An invitation from the FSC stated that the workshop aimed, “to comply with International standards set out in the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) 40 Recommendations which outline a comprehensive and consistent framework of measures including training and public awareness programmes which countries should implement in combating money laundering and terrorist financing. The workshop followed closely upon the return of Premier Reuben Meade’s return from the United Kingdom, where he along with other British Overseas Territories (OTs) leaders were invited by British Prime Minister John Cameron, soon to be chairman of the G8 countries to discuss discuss Tax transparency matters. Both Premier Meade and Montserrat Governor Adrian Davis gave brief addresses at the opening of the workshop. Governor Davis said that Montserrat became the first

of the Overseas Territories to have extended the Multilateral Convention on Mutual Administrative Assistance in Tax Matters. Premier Meade re-emphasized the urgency and the necessity for Montserrat to participate in the global counter activities. “This is a very important ask, and it’s an example actually of implementation by Montserrat rather than simply saying they would do something. Montserrat has done it and in fact this is the process which is the combination of the process which began almost 12 months ago to get the convention extended so Montserrat was in the lead on that,” the Governor said. The convention, which was extended to the island on July 6 enables the Government to engage in effective exchange of information with a number of countries, the Governor indicated, adding that this is one of several steps the island has taken to date in an effort to combat tax evasion. The Governor revealed further one of his role as, “… so far as I can do it is to try and discuss with the UK government how proportional and how pragmatic we can be in Montserrat in meeting stan-

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Premier Reuben T. Meade Ms. Grace Rock

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ISLAND OF MONTSERRAT IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUSTICE A. D. 2013 [PROBATE] In the Estate of CHARLOTTE HILLECHINA BUMBERA, deceased LEGAL NOTICE NOTICE is hereby given that after the expiration of fourteen (14) days from the date hereof, application will be made in the Registry of the High Court of Justice for an Order that Probate of the Last Will and Testament of CHARLOTTE HILLECHINA BUMBERA late of Old Towne, Montserrat who died on the 10th. July 2013 domiciled in the Dependent Territory of Montserrat be granted to CAROL OSBORNE of Old Towne, Montserrat the Executrix named in the Will of the said deceased. ALL persons claiming to be beneficially interested therein are requested forthwith to send particulars to us the undersigned. FURTHER any person objecting to the issuance of a Grant of Probate to the Applicant should notify the Registrar of the High Court of Justice, whose address is: Office of the Registrar General, Brades, Montserrat, not later than fourteen (14) days from the date of this notice. Dated this 25th. day of July, 2013 ………………………………………. ALLEN MARKHAM & ASSOCIATES This notice is published by Allen Markham & Associates Barristers & Solicitors whose address for Service is Banks, Montserrat.

dards, and if some allowance can be made for the smallness of our jurisdiction.” He said, “We have made two important commitments - to negotiating a FATCA (Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act) with the UK, and we need to publish by the end of the year an action plan on beneficial ownership.” He said the two things are actually slightly congenital to the day’s discussing, being all part of the same thing. “And, the fact that you’re holding this workshop is another important

demonstration of the commitGovernor Adrian Davis ment.” The Hon Premier at his turn said it is imperative that Montserrat continues to comply with international regulations on money laundering, tax of the transaction…” adding evasion and terrorist financ- that the Europeans have now ing. “The United States has come onboard in terms of said very clearly if you do not determining tax compliance, comply … if you do not com- anti-money laundering. “It is ply any transaction being done not just a US thing, it’s a global through the United States, they thing, so all of us will get on cont’d. on page 9 will automatically deduct 30%


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The SGP falters: Montserrat still must

hunt for private sector investment The Hon. Premier Reuben T Meade returned from the UK where he attended, primarily at the invitation of the UK Prime Minister David Cameron, meetings with respect to what the Premier describes, “pressures were being brought on the British government because the Prime Minister was taking over the chairmanship of G8…” After filing his report on the global tax issues with the UK and its Overseas Territories (OTs) the premier took questions as to the progress he had made with respect to the development of Little Bay, the town centre and the new port at Carrs Bay, all the focus of the Strategic Growth Plan. He cautioned that he never said anything about Arab investors as the question was put to him made mention. “I’m just saying in relation to investment proposal - they were not willing to support that approach.” He added, “…basically, we now need to go

both DFID and the Foreign Office three weeks ago in London, is that they are still very much supportive.” He said, the initial discussions which were held

with the Minister in Montserrat was that there was a link between the private investor and the port. “We have been able to get an extension of time - we have

also been able to move the discussion from forcing the government into signing any and any deal in order to get the British investment.” cont’d. on page 9

Ministry of Comms and Works moves to brand new quarters in Brades and either renegotiate with that grouping of investors, or we just need to go back out to market, to see if we can find other investors.” These were to be investors, who do not necessarily want the same conditions as the ones which

the British say they are not willing to allow Montserrat to go down that particular road. Another time, speaking on ZJB radio he expanded on the foregoing. “The discussions which I had with

GIU (adapted) The Ministry of Communications, Works and Labour has moved finally into its new headquarters building located in the business

and administrative cluster at Brades. Built as part of the Government Accommodation Project, the building is said to be a showpiece of

Montserratian design and construction capability. K.J. Cassell Architects and Clement Cassell Construction are the two local cont’d. on page 11

VACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT DIRECTOR GENERAL ORGANISATION OF EASTERN CARIBBEAN STATES The Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States is a regional grouping of nine member states established by the Treaty of Basseterre. The OECS Authority has commenced the search for a highly motivated, committed and dynamic individual to provide inspired leadership to the operations of the OECS Secretariat and advance its strategic interests regionally and internationally while deepening the scope of OECS integration through the Economic Union. Duties & Responsibilities The Director General is the chief executive of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States and is responsible for the overall administration and management of the Organisation. The Director General is responsible to the OECS Authority and its various Organs and is guided by the Revised Treaty of Basseterre and the OECS Chairman in the execution of the functions of the post. Qualifications, Competencies & Skills Post graduate degree in economics, social sciences, development or related fields of discipline with at least 12 years’ experience in a senior leadership and supervisory position. The OECS Secretariat is headquartered in ST LUCIA. The position of Director General is open to nationals of OECS member states and is tenable as of 01 January, 2014. Interested persons are asked to visit the OECS website at: www.oecs.org for further details of this position, and to forward a curriculum vitae and any other supporting documentation to the Office of the Director General as follows: directorgeneral@oecs.org. The deadline for submission is 26 August, 2013.

New home of the Ministry of Communication and Works TERRITORY OF MONTSERRAT IN THE HIGH COURT OF JUSTICE A.D. 2013 PROBATE In the Estate RONALD EDWARDSON DALEY deceased LEGAL NOTICE NOTICE is hereby given that on the expiration of fourteen (14) days from the date hereof Application will be made in the Registry of the High Court of Justice for Grant of Probate to the estate of RONALD EDWARDSON DALEY who died on 5th of November 2012 be granted to KINGSLEY HOWE the Executor named in the Will of the said RONALD EDWARDSON DALEY. ALL persons claiming to be beneficially interested therein are requested forthwith to send particulars thereof to the undersigned. FURTHER any person objecting to the Grant of Probate to the Applicant should notify the Registrar of the High Court, Brades, Montserrat not later than fourteen (14) days from the date of this notice. Dated this 22nd day of July, 2013. Oral Martin Solicitor for the Applicant


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Friday, August 09, 2013

Letters/Opinion

EDITORIAL Malpractice is not necessarily illegal, but the lack of it creates goodness, and much of the problems will disappear In the last issue’s the Editorial was captioned, “Malpractice is almost cultural, no progress unless corrected”. Not surprising, but reaction to this was not all surprising, there were some who didn’t bother to understand the issues surrounding malpractice in Montserrat, who therefore scoffed at the Editorial. Montserrat, it is often said, would not even qualify, because of its little less than 5,000 population, as a village in some places. However, there are many situations that would disqualify it as a village. It is still an island. This is so even though today, you can drive from the farthest inhabited south to far north in minimum 30 minutes. Minimum, because it depends… Malpractice is described as any or all of the following: professional wrong doing that results in injury or damage; activity that transgresses moral or civil law; dereliction of duty, through ignorance or negligence or criminal intent; and, the one we prefer – immoral, illegal, or unethical professional conduct or neglect of professional duty; or improper or unethical conduct by the holder of a professional or official position. No one, after reading these should have any difficulty in recalling an experience that they are aware of that would not fall under some one of these descriptions. Anyone who would say they are not familiar with any of these occurring in Montserrat, is themselves rotten to the core and are part of the very real problem Montserrat faces. The result of course is that, the situation becomes like the saying goes, ‘spinning top in mud’. Using that saying suggests project plans and actions that are going nowhere. Or, if at all, with a worthless result. Ethics is a system of basic principles (rules of conduct recognized in respect of human conduct. You might hear someone say, locally, “he no have no principle at all”. The person referred only understands malpractice. So the basic thought is not all malpractice is illegal. But, because it usually ends with very expensive costs or burdening on people, only where legality is involved, or where the authority involved there could be some recourse, perpetrators can be brought to some form of justice. The many issues surrounding procurement regulations are the result of malpractice, most with legal implications, resulting in court actions and threats thereof. When a project requires that a tender be published on an internet website designed or created by the Public Procurement Board and published in ‘at least’ one of the following, (notice this doesn’t say ‘only’ one): (1) a newspaper of nationwide circulation; (ii) a public notice board designated by the Public Procurement Board for this purpose; or (iii) a local public radio or television broadcast station. This requires commonsense, but while this was not a problem in years gone by, it is become the norm not to follow the directives or to reduce it to nonsense. The malpractice of this simple rule may well cause the geothermal exploration program, which was not measly financed. No DFID project is not measly financed, notwithstanding they admitted that the A1 Road Project was under budgeted. That too, believe it or not, was the result of malpractice which should be corrected. The losers are always the people of Montserrat, and until there are clean hands and pure hearts, not much will change in the relationship and how Montserrat is treated. There is no place for malpractice in good governance. Good governance will get continuity a critical factor in any success story. The lack of malpractice, the greed and selfishness will bring good governance. The result will be strong fiscal discipline and an orderly society.

The Montserrat Reporter Published by: Montserrat Printing & Publishing, Inc. - Editor: Bennette Roach Office: Davy Hill, Mailing Address: P.O. Box 306, Davy Hill, Montserrat, W.I. Typeset and Printed by Montserrat Printing & Publishing, Inc. - monp_p@candw.ms. Tel. (664) 491-4715 Fax: (664) 491-2430 E-mail: editor@themontserratreporter.com or monrep@candw.ms - Web Site: http://www.themontserratreporter.com

Venezuela to hike interest rates under PetroCaribe deal

Jamaica Observer

CARACAS,Venezuela (CMC) — The Venezuelan government is set to increase the interest rate it charges to finance oil purchases by Central American and Caribbean countries under the PetroCaribe deal. According to reports from online financial news agency Platts, the increase stems from higher administrative and maintenance costs of the loans. Platts is a division of McGraw Hill Financial, a leader in credit ratings, benchmarks and analytics for the global capital and commodity markets. Since the creation of PetroCaribe in 2005, 17 member countries have enjoyed an annual interest rate between one and two per cent, but as of October that will rise to 2.4 per cent. The source said the planned increases are permitted under the agreements Venezuela signed with the participating countries. He added that no additional increases in rates are being contemplated in the near term. The report states that Venezuela is unlikely to reduce or suspend oil shipments to the debtor countries given the political value it sees in the oil alliance. Heads of State and Government of PetroCaribe member countries are set to meet in September. In reacting to news of the planned increase, Jamaica’s energy minister, Phillip Pauwell, said he was not aware of this move. However, the Opposition Jamaica Labour Party’s spokesman on energy, Gregory Mair, said he is not surprised. “Because of the precarious financial situation that Venezuela is in, I’m not surprised. But, what

is of real concern is what we could see in the future as a tightening of the terms and conditions of the PetroCaribe agreement, meaning that they could reduce the credit lines and probably we would have to find more US dollars to pay them on a monthly basis, which would put more pressure on the foreign exchange rate for us here in Jamaica,” Mair said. Under the PetroCaribe agreement, members can buy oil or refined products from Venezuela at favourable rates and through a long-term financing agreement at low-interest rates. Petrocaribe members are Antigua and Barbuda, Honduras, Bahamas, Jamaica, Belize, Nicaragua, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Dominica, St Kitts and Nevis, Grenada, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Guatemala, St Lucia, Guyana, Suriname and Haiti. On this matter a report out of St. Kitts states in part: The source said Venezuela exports an average of 180 000 barrels per day (b/d) to PetroCaribe countries, of which 143 000 b/d is oil and 37 000 b/d is refined product. Over the past two years, the debt for oil purchase by PetroCaribe countries has risen to $5.7B with Cuba and Nicaragua accounting for the most of it. In a press release headlined “St. Kitts & Nevis Signs Another Petrocaribe Agreement” and dated June 29, 2006, it stated that St. Kitts and Nevis and the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela have signed another PetroCaribe Agreement designed to activate the terms of the first agreement which symbolized a fuel arrangement between the two countries. It also stated: “Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Public

Works, Utilities, Transport and Posts Mr. Oaklyn Peets, said that prior to the second signing there had been a meeting with the stake holders to ensure that the supply agreement would materialize.” And that Permanent Secretary Peets said there had also been a meeting with representatives from Antigua and Barbuda to discuss the possibility of the country being a transshipment point to St. Kitts and Nevis. The release also spoke to the benefits that could be derived from the PetroCaribe Agreement, which Minister of Public Works, Utilities, Transport and Posts Hon. Dr. Earl Asim Martin outlined the financial agreement. “He said that if, for example, $100 million in petroleum products was purchased via the agreement, $60 million would have to be paid upfront. The Government of St. Kitts and Nevis could then invest the remaining $40 million in social programmes. The agreement enables the repayment of the $40 million over a period of 25 years at a one percent interest rate. “The Minister responsible for Utilities further explained that the full repayment does not have to be done monetarily. He stated that the repayment could also be worked out in terms of services and products that could be given to the people of Venezuela. Minister Martin also referred to the fact that Venezuela is a member of the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and so has to sell its petroleum at a standard price as set by the organisation. As such, the agreement is a means by which the signatory counties can obtain cheaper initial petroleum costs enabling the development of social programmes.”

Our Scripture Verse Today Trustworthdy God The psalmist wrote, “Into your hands I commit my spirit; deliver me, LORD, my faithful God.” Psalm 31:5 (NIV) I stepped onto the diving board and stood at the edge for several minutes as I prepared to take my first dive into the college pool. Trying to relax and remember the techniques from my swimming classes, I still felt nervous. „DonÊt be afraid,‰ my swimming coach yelled as he waited for me to dive. „Remember, IÊm right here to help you.‰ When I heard my coachÊs words, I decided to dive in, feeling confident that he would assist me if I encountered problems.

As I recalled this situation, I thought about Jesus as he prayed in the garden of Gethsemane. Feeling afraid, he prayed, „Take this cup from me.‰ But he also must have known that he could trust his heavenly Father completely and that his Father would deliver him, even in death, because he continued, „Yet not what I will, but what you will‰ (Mark. 14:36). As we journey through life, we will encounter troubles and danger. But just as Jesus trusted God in his darkest hour, we too can remain confident in GodÊs promise to take care of us during this life and the life to come. James C. Hendrix (Indiana, USA)


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Commentary: Living the holy life

By Oliver Mills All of us would like to go about our daily lives being positive, despite our experiences. We would always like to be self-assured, to have the kind of knowledge that enables us to make the right choices at the right time, and in the right places, and not experience any regrets, unease, or fear. We also wish that we could all live in a world of total friendship, where smiles and cheers are part of our normal existence, and where our friend is our neighbour, and our neighbour is our friend. And we would love a world of internal and external peace, where the need to reprimand does not exist, where jealousy, hate, and conspiracies are unthinkable, and where we treasure, and affirm each other’s goodness. This kind and quality of life is possible, and we can have it all. Indeed, these

qualities are within us, waiting for us to access them, and live them. Going about our lives, doing the right thing, and doing it right, means we will not be blamed for anything. When we are without blame, we do not feel guilty of anything. Nothing can be held against us and, as a result, our minds will always be full of joy, gladness, and peace. We can therefore sleep peacefully, and without worry. As a result, we live healthier lives and longer lives too. These qualities are part of our holy nature, which keeps us centered, and connected to what is divine within us. Two of the most important qualities that will help us to live holy and exemplary lives are always speaking the truth, and avoid slandering each other. When we are truthful about any situation, others trust us more, respect us more, and admire the way we live more. Speaking the truth means we are honest, and above board. It also means we are helpful in making others aware that they have fallen from the kind of behaviour that could be detrimental to the plans they set for themselves and their family. We could then counsel them to have a more life-affirming behaviour, which would also bring them honour, by

setting them on a more noble course. When we avoid slandering each other, we transcend ourselves, and the situation that could provoke us to slander each other. Slander is replaced by helpfulness, and good guidance, which uplifts the other. A better person emerges, with transformed attitudes, and a committed willingness to do better. If we should slander each other, it brings even more slander, and a situation could be brought about which does no good for anyone. Replacing slander with compassion, and forgiveness, brings out what is holy within us, the good, highest part of ourselves, which once hidden, now comes alive to restore us, and others to what, and who we were meant to be. Sometimes we go about our lives with preconceived attitudes about others. We sometimes even haven’t met a particular person before, but when we do, we form an attitude about them. It could be pleasant, or belittling. If it is the latter, then we dishonour the person, and ourselves, and we may deny ourselves the opportunity to have a new friend. We experience a loss, and we in turn lose someone, who may be the very person who could be the greatest help, or asset to us. The loss

CARIBBEAN COMMUNITY SECRETARIAT STAFF VACANCIES Applications are invited from interested and suitably qualified nationals of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Member States and Associate Members of the Caribbean Community to fill the following positions: DUTY STATION – BARBADOS (i)

al principles, which cannot be breached. Our character and integrity then become exemplary, and others seek to emulate our values. This is the essence of a holy life worth having, and worth living too. We then become aware that earth is really in heaven, and heaven is really on earth.

is also mutual. When this happens, we have usually ignored the holy urgings within us, encouraging a positive contact. We therefore let the chance to show holiness in our lives slip away temporarily. However, if we should greet the person with friendship, and a caring disposition, this reflects the holiness within us. We will find that the person is very responsive and cordial, even quite helpful in assisting us to clarify, or put a new light on a situation that had been bothering us for some time. What happens in this meeting is that two holy natures connect with each other, and the outcome is joy for each of us. This shows

that when we approach each other in a spirit of holiness and kindness, miracles happen, for real. We not only honour them, but honour ourselves as well. Keeping our word to others, and ourselves, and not permitting ourselves to be bought, are also important attributes of holiness. When we keep our word, our credibility is strengthened, and our character is enhanced. Others can depend on us to do what we said we would, and when we deliver, we contribute to the satisfaction of a fellow human being. And not allowing ourselves to have a price, in the social market, adds to our stature as a dignified human person, with ethical and mor-

Oliver Mills is a former lecturer in education at the University of the West Indies Mona Campus. He holds an M.Ed degree. from Dalhousie University in Canada and an MA from the University of London. He is a past Permanent Secretary in Education with the government of the Turks and Caicos Islands

Examiner.com By: Peter Trapasso Scientists discovered 33 new ant species in the Central America and the Caribbean. Jack Longino, an etymologist from the University of Utah, said that one-third were named after Mayan deities. According to United Press International August 1, 2013, 15,000 species have been discovered so far and it is suspected that 100,000 may be in existence. “One of the newfound species, Eurhopalothrix zipacna, is named for

a violent, crocodilelike Mayan demon, and is found in Guatemala and Honduras. Another, dubbed Eurhopalothrix xibalba, or ‘place of fear,’ refers to the Mayan underworld; this ant is found from Honduras to Costa Rica.” The new ant species are generally found in forested areas. This serves to highlight the importance of continued conservation efforts. Longino describes what he saw under a microscope as some thing nightmarish and like the

creature from the movie “Alien.” About half the new ant species were named in a paper published in the scientific journal, Zootaxa. The remainder will be named and revealed in a second paper to be published. The ants named in the published paper come from the genus Eurhopalothrix, known for the club-shaped hairs on their bodies. The rest are from the genus from the genus Octostruma, which refers to the ants’ eight-segmented antennas.

33 new ant species discovered in Central America

Senior Legal Officer, Drafting, Legal and Institutional Framework DUTY STATION – GUYANA Two (2) Senior Legal Officers, Legal and Institutional Framework

Full details of these positions may be obtained by accessing the following web sites-www.caricom.org; www.caribank.org; www.oecs.org; www.crnm.org and www.caribbeanjobsonline.com Applications in English Language with full curriculum vitae details, including nationality, work experience, educational qualifications and/or expertise, language proficiency, coordinates (including email addresses) of three referees (at least two of whom must be familiar with the applicant’s work), and other relevant information, should be addressed to the Executive Director, Human Resource Management, Caribbean Community Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, Guyana and sent by email to applnhrm@caricom.org. The deadline for the submission of applications is 11 August 2013.

Photo: 33 new ant species discovered in Central America

Photo Credit: John T. Longino, University of Utah

(ii)


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Friday, August 09, 2013

Indian High Commissioner makes informative farewell visit

right: ITEC Students pose with the High Commissioner above: One of the students who studied in India, Kenbert Barzey On June 27, 2013 His Excellency Malay Mishrah the Indian High Commissioner to some territories in the Caribbean including Montserrat, made a farewell, his last official visit to Montserrat, where he announced that he had been in the position for the last four years, based in Trinidad and Tobago. The High Commissioner after being welcomed as “brother and friend” by Premier Meade, recounted, “we have done quite a few things which have carried our bilateral program of cooperation forward, quiet

significantly,” for which he said, “I would thank the government of Montserrat and the Hon. Premier in particular for always being very supportive and also understanding in various areas where we could make substantive progress.” He recalled the MOU on bilateral Cooperation was signed two years ago in Port-of-Spain and that it was a broad framework instrument which was signed to carry our bilateral cooperation in various areas forward. He reported on the capacity building by which In-

dia offers a certain number of training slots to Montserratian candidates to come to India be trained under the Indian Technical and Economic Cooperation program (ITEC). He said the program has been enhanced whereby they are now giving four, advising, “if we see a good utilization of these slots we will raise it even further…” The training, he said, came in various areas including IT, small enterprises, accounting and budgeting , personal management, security, climate change, very diverse areas provided by about 50 top Indian institutions. H E Mishrah spoke to what he said was another significant development,

“…we’ve noted is in agriculture. We have felt that there was need for an experts to guide the government in the area of Agro processing and food processing, given that Montserrat does have abundant resources of foods. and if there was some kind of expertise available that could help the local people in generating in their own business and having their own jobs, and making their own products for the markets.” He then touched on education making reference the supply of computer tablets for children. He has provided the information and added that if GoM would “come back with the order for tablets, this may even

lead to some kind of collaboration in manufacturing tablets in this part of the world which would be even better.” A farewell reception given by the Office of the Premier on the following Friday evening at Ponteen’s Place in Little Bay afforded the High Commissioner to meet 12 residents who have been on courses free of costs to India. At that reception Mishrah confirmed this at he reaffirmed his government’s commitment to increase the number of available slots for scholarships he encouraged as many people as possible to apply for the courses, that were open to not just public servants but any resident left: Regional Affairs Officer, Claude Hogan, chaired at the reception in Montserrat. In addition below: His Excellency Malay Mishrah the Indian High Commissioner and to the courses mentioned

Hon. Reuben T. Meade, Premier right: High Commissioner receives gift from Premier’s Office staffer

earlier, Mishrah added there were other courses such as leather tanning, forensic science, ICT and legal drafting. During the reception, there were in attendance former students who were beneficiaries of the Indian courses. They included Kenbert Barzey and Roland Irish who thanked the high commissioner for his support in enabling Montserrat to be included in the ITEC programme. Barzey and Irish also encouraged other island residents to research and apply for the courses as they were not only beneficial for learning about a subject but had immense cultural impact and helped to build relationships with people from all over the world. So now these are the cont’d. on page 10


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MCC records its best ever CAPE results The Montserrat Community College is announcing and expressing their pleasure, at the

preliminary results of the June 2013 Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examinations (CAPE). A Principal Paul Payne release stated that the College entered 49 candidates, which included seven part-time students, two of whom were absent for the examinations. The students were registered under the College to write 13 CAPE

Units for a total of 167 subject entries, but with two candidates reporting absent, these results are based on 163 subject entries, which the students actually wrote. This was an increase from the 42 students who registered for 144

subject entries in 16 CAPE Units in 2012 The College recorded 146 subject passes from 163 entries, achieving pass a rate of 89.6%, also up from last year’s pass rate of 79.4%. This year the College

achieved 100% pass rate in Applied Mathematics Unit 1, Communication Studies, Computer Science Unit 2, Information Technology Unit 2 and Environmental Science Unit 1. Pass rates above 80% were obtained in Caribbean Studies, Biology

Montserrat Community College campus in Salem

Unit 2, Computer Science Unit 1 and Information Technology Unit1. The significant improvement in the pass rates for Applied and Pure Mathematics must be commended. The principal reports that the top student this year was Ruian Zhu

who sat and passed six CAPE Units. T’Sean Blake, Nish Brown, Jhovan Daniel, TiVonne Howe, and Anjeanette Williams all passed five subjects with another 16 students, obtaining passes in four CAPE Units. While 64% of the passes were at Grades IV and V, Tiffannie Skerritt obtained two passes at Grade I, one at Grade II and one at Grade III. The overall pass rate of 89.5% is the highest achieved by the College in its nine-year history. Educators in Montserrat and from USA have piled in applause and congratulations to the college for this new achievement. One of the overseas educators submitted, “My warmest congratulations to the Principal, staff and CAPE students. Positive indicators for future success,” while another from Montserrat, said, “Brilliant work and congratulations to all stake holders.” One Ministry officials wrote this to the principal. “CONGRATS to you, the entire staff and students. Your hard work has been rewarded.”


Page 8

Friday, August 09, 2013

Kids time - In your own korner Hello everyone – It is kid’s time with Auntie Lyka “In Your Own Korner”. We are in the middle of the summer vacation. I hope you are enjoying it. Have fun, go to the beach, summer school, VBS, or take a holiday from your home. Just remember to also read a book. It can take you anyway around the world, it all depends on the book you choose to read. The Credit Union Hall was already packed when I arrived. Almost everyone I knew was there and the hall was beautifully decorated. In fact, it was the loveliest Christmas decoration I had ever seen in my life. Everyone was all dressed up like me, in their Sunday best. Grandma and the other ladies had walked with their fans and were already fanning away. All I felt was pure excitement. I was bedazzled! Then I spotted an empty chair. “Mama, look one over there.” Grandma was greeting one of the Peace Corps volunteers in her best English. I knew that I had to make the move so I scurried towards the chair. I waved to a few girls from my class and then I was lost in the beauty of the place. After a while I heard Cheryl my classmate talking to me. “Eh, what you say Cheryl?” I asked, sounding like my little cousin when called upon while watching TV. “Girl, it look like Santa coming for real this time eh,” she said with excitement. “He better do,” I responded, remembering how we had waited the year before for Santa. He had not shown up. Just then Lauren, the Peace Corp volunteer for our area came to the microphone. “The party is about to begin,” she announced. “Santa is running a little late,” she continued, “but he will be here,” she assured us. We all waited for a moment. Word around the hall was that the party would not begin until Santa was in. I was now sweating. Sharine, my neighbor was sitting next to me and she was talking too much. All I wanted was to see Santa. The noise in the hall grew excessive as the smaller children became restless; running around, fussing and crying. Then Ma Raphael came to the microphone. What a surprise! “Sit down in all you seat! All you children these days too unmannerly. Chile, you over there!” She pointed to Sharine. “Stop rocking de bench like that. Wait!” she screamed.” Santa will come when him ready.” It was strange seeing Ma Raphael on stage and to make things stranger, she was using the microphone. I was amazed. On my way to school, I would always greet her in her yard. Her response was almost always a whisper. She was not as warm and jolly as the other old ladies I usually met on my way. Her husband Mr. Raphael was different though. He had a way of laughing really loud, especially when he was down at the little village shop near the playing field. He was a plump little man with brown eyes. Most of the villagers called him ‘Français La’ and grandma told me that it was because of his French heritage. I could not see the two as husband and wife. They were like as alike as night and day. “Santa! Santa!” I heard the shout and all heads

Pre-School Corner

Santa in my village by Grethel Joseph

were turned to the entrance. I got up as if in a trance and there he was. At least I had spotted his bright red, velvet looking outfit. By then, some of my classmates and other children had crowded the aisle, and some were even standing on chairs and benches. Then Santa walked down the aisle pulling a big sack behind him. It felt surreal. His white beards were exactly as I had seen on TV and on grandma’s post cards from England. He was just as I had expected. Well, a little shorter than expected. As he made his way down, I thought of all the gifts that Santa had to share. Then I was taken aback. It was something about the way Santa walked. Something was strangely familiar about his gait. Then the music came on. We all joined in singing ‘Jingle Bells’ as we danced around the room. We giggled as Santa displayed his moves. Then a few Bouyon and Soca tunes started and Santa was king of the dance floor. He danced like a true Caribbean dancer. “Hmmm,” I thought, “well maybe they do those dances at the North Pole too.” “Look here, Santa even know Caribbean dance,” I said to Sharine’s ear. She looked at me as if she was thinking the same thing and we continued to enjoy the fun. “Look at that!” Sharine was now tapping me hard on my shoulder. It was Ma Raphael. The lady was down on the floor showing off moves that not even I could do. Santa was laughing away and the two were having a merry old time. The crowd cheered as Ma Raphael did a move with Santa as her partner. To me, this was getting stranger by the minute; I couldn’t believe that this was the same shy-looking old lady from down the street. I looked into the faces of grandma and the other grown-ups and they danced and cheered away as if they were used to it all. The soft drinks came in time to cool down everyone,

especially after Santa and Ma Raphael’s dance piece. We were served peanuts, chips, marshmallows and a bunch of other snacks. Santa had his share too and you should see him eat. Really, I had never imagined Santa eating, and by the way he ate I was sure that there was nothing that tasty at the North Pole. Lauren’s charming voice then announced the presentation of gifts and Santa belted his first Ho, ho, ho. I jumped. Santa had such a familiar voice. It was like Santa had family in our village. “He sounds like someone I know,” I whispered. Sharine just rolled her eyes and shrugged as if to say ‘Whatever.’ Snacks were falling all over the floor as everyone made their way to meet Santa and receive a gift. I fitted myself between two boys from a neighboring hamlet and also made space for Sharine. I looked on as each of my friends spoke to Santa and received their gifts. Santa sure was jolly. His long white beards slammed unto his chest with every word he said and the children all giggled. I could not wait. Then it was my turn and I had a few questions for Santa. I wanted to know a bit more about the North Pole; more than what I had read in my little reindeer book. I wanted to know where he bought so many gifts and also, I was eager to hear a bit about Mrs. Claus. Now, there I was on Santa’s lap, throwing my questions as fast as I could. Santa had a strange accent which sounded like the way grandma speaks to the Peace Corp volunteers and visitors from England. From time to time I had a slight feeling that I knew more about the North Pole than Santa. Probably I should have lent him my Reindeer book. “Take that chile off the stage Santa, it have other people in line!” I heard Ma Raphael shouting. I however had one more question to ask. Just as I started asking him about Mrs. Claus, I saw Ma. Raphael coming towards us. I quickly took my gift from Santa and ran to the back of the hall where grandma was. Grandma looked a bit annoyed. I was sure that it was at Ma Raphael. As she placed her comforting arm around my neck, I looked up at Santa again and it suddenly all came to me like I had solved a jig-saw puzzle. I couldn’t help but believe that Santa was Mr. Raphael, Ma Raphael’s husband. “Mama, I know who Santa is,” I whispered to her with a big grin on my face. Grandma smiled as she made the ‘hush your mouth sign’ to me. I made the ‘Lock and throw away the key sign’ right back at her. We hugged each other tightly as the ‘Joy to the World’ song boomed through hall. This was turning out to be a twisted yet fun Christmas after all.

How many circles.

Hello to you my preschool friends. Today we will look at numbers and colours, Do enjoy.

In Your Own Korner. Where we will have fun Kids write your stories, tell us about yourselves. Email or post - Write to Aunty Lyka, at P.O. Box 306, Davy Hill, or send email to: kidstime@themontserratreporter.com

Detective Myster A detective who was mere days from cracking an international smuggling ring has suddenly gone missing. While inspecting his last-known location, you find a note: 710 57735 34 5508 51 7718 Currently there are 3 suspects: Bill, John, and Todd. Can you break the detective’s code and find the criminal’s name? Ans:Bill. If you read the message upside down, you’ll notice that the numbers resemble letters and that those letters form legible sentences. The message is “Bill is boss. He sells oil.”

See you next week right here


Friday, August 09, 2013

Money laundering workshop cont’d from page 2 board,” he said. He said the public needs to understand that what they’re doing, “is not simply trying to get into your business but simply trying to protect you, protect Montserrat, protect the rest of the region, and the world, form these acts of terrorism, acts of money laundering…” The Premier referring to those practicing money laundering do it even through churches. “They sometimes are very unique in terms of how they do the laundering, including churches. Churches can be involved in money laundering without recognizing that they are part of it,” he said seriously. According to a government release earlier, in May

this year, Meade at the 43rd meeting of the Board of Governors’ of the Caribbean Development Bank in St. Lucia told the finance ministers that the Caribbean is struggling to keep up to date with changing international standards such as FATCA and have spent millions on these regulations. He said the expertise and resources have placed tremendous pressure on already stretched budgets but was confident that more can be achieved collectively. “These actions have serious implications for the territories because their economies are not sufficiently diversified to absorb the fallout from major reductions in income from tourism and financial services,” he said seeking

cooperation. According to the report, it said the Premier said he raised the matter because all of the CDB borrowing member states are in some way affected by the increase in international regulations and are struggling to respond. The OTs because of their size and resource base are one or two sector economies specifically in the areas of tourism and financial services.” He informed that over the past ten years, these areas have been threatened by actions taken globally to combat crime and corruption. Tourism, in particular has been affected by the falling levels of disposable income and we have seen many of the tourism plant being abandoned.

Summary Report of Proceedings of the Legislative Assembly held on 25th July, 2013. 1.

Page g 9

Montserrat still hunting investors we are in fact now back on track where they are saying At that point the Pre- you’re moving in the right mier was upbeat and direction we now need to hopeful as he said: “So put a structured argument cont’d from page 3

to a higher up in the UK and …cabinet people to be in a position to say, can we go the rout of 100% financing of the port development excluding the Marina.” In April this year Golf Classic Ltd submitted a letter of intent to the Montserrat Development Cooperation (MDC) for the construction of a 150 room hotel and 20 luxury villas on Potato Hill.

Potato Hill, Little Bay

Port Little Bay

The following papers were laid on the table;(i) Montserrat Development Corporation Financial Statements for the year ended 31st March 2011; (ii) Montserrat Development Corporation Financial Statements for the year ended 31st March 2012; (iii) S R & O No. 43 of 2013

2.

Customs Duties and Consumption Tax (Montobacco Ltd) (Processing Fee) (Exemption) Order 2013;

The Second and Third Readings of the following Bills took place: i.

‘Friendly Societies (Amendment) Bill 2013’ First Reading 25th June 2013 Second Reading 25th July 2013 Third Reading 25th July 2013 The Bill was passed with no amendment.

ii. ‘Miscellaneous Amendments (Financial Services) Bill 2013’ First Reading 25th June 2013 Second Reading 25th July 2013 Third Reading 25th July 2013 The Bill was passed with a minor amendment as follows: Clause 8(c) – Change number (4) to (3) iii. Port Security Charge Bill 2013 First Reading 28th May 2013 Second Reading 25th June 2013 Third Reading 25th July 2013 The Bill was passed with a list of amendments, a copy of which can be obtained from the Legislature Department. iv. Law Revision (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 2013 The Bill was passed with an amendment to the schedule in clause 7 as follows: Item 10 - change $10.00 to $100.00 3.

VACANCY ANNOUNCEMENT DIRECTOR GENERAL ORGANISATION OF EASTERN CARIBBEAN STATES The Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States is a regional grouping of nine member states established by the Treaty of Basseterre. The OECS Authority has commenced the search for a highly motivated, committed and dynamic individual to provide inspired leadership to the operations of the OECS Secretariat and advance its strategic interests regionally and internationally while deepening the scope of OECS integration through the Economic Union. Duties & Responsibilities The Director General is the chief executive of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States and is responsible for the overall administration and management of the Organisation. The Director General is responsible to the OECS Authority and its various Organs and is guided by the Revised Treaty of Basseterre and the OECS Chairman in the execution of the functions of the post.

The following Bill was deferred to the next sitting of the Legislative Assembly: v.

Qualifications, Competencies & Skills

Merchant Shipping Bill 2013 First Reading 28th May 2013 Deferred 25th June 2013 Deferred 25th July 2013

Post graduate degree in economics, social sciences, development or related fields of discipline with at least 12 years’ experience in a senior leadership and supervisory position.

Bills that had their first readings can be read in their entirety at any of the following places: Legislature Department #1 Farara Plaza Brades Montserrat

Legal Department Valley View Brades Montserrat

Public Library BBC Complex Brades Montserrat

Sgd. Judith C Baker CLERK OF THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY

Government of Montserrat Website

The OECS Secretariat is headquartered in ST LUCIA. The position of Director General is open to nationals of OECS member states and is tenable as of 01 January, 2014. Interested persons are asked to visit the OECS website at: www.oecs.org for further details of this position, and to forward a curriculum vitae and any other supporting documentation to the Office of the Director General as follows: directorgeneral@oecs.org. The deadline for submission is 26 August, 2013.


Page 10

Friday, August 09, 2013

Summary Report of Proceedings of the Legislative Assembly held on 25th June, 2013. 1.

The following papers were laid on the table;(a) Financial Secretary (i) S R & O No. 39 of 2013

(ii) S R & O No. 40 of 2013

(iii) S R & O No. 41 of 2013

Income Tax (Waiver of Tax for Airlines and Charter Boat Companies) Order 2013; Customs Duties and Consumption Tax (Monty’s Dive Centre) (Exemption) Order 2013; Customs Duties and Consumption Tax (Coral Cay Conservation Ltd) (Exemption) Order 2013;

(b) Attorney General (i) S R & O No. 41 of 2013

Customs Duties and Consumption Tax (Coral Cay Conservation Ltd) (Exemption) Order 2013;

(ii) SR & O No. 42 of 2013

Revised Treaty of Basseterre Establishing the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States Economic Union Act 2013 (Commencement) Order 2013;

Indian High Commissioner’s farewell...cont’d. from page 6 latest news in fact the premier doesn’t himself know what this I’ve got today morning, that we are getting an expert very soon who is coming to this region and we are getting him to go both Dominica and Montserrat we had discussed about it earlier if you recall that he was to come, there was some challenge on his funding his air cost from India to this part of the world now that has been sorted out and it now depends on the government of Mont-

serrat when they would like this expert to come and for how long period , that will be discussed in detail with the Hon. Minister of agriculture. On the education side we have given some information about two things one is the supply of what we call computer tablets for school children we were given a kind of a – – – request to give some information about computer tablet manufacturing companies who are doing good in India and

they are much in demand for the tablet and we have given information for the government and we hope that the government will work and that and come back with the order for tablets and this may even lead to some kind of collaboration in manufacturing tablets in this part of the world which would be even better. His Excellency Malay Mishrah the Indian High Commissioner and Hon. Reuben T. Meade, Premier hold press conference.

(iii) Legislative Programme 2013/2014. 2.

The First, Second and Third Readings of the following Bill took place: Supplementary Appropriation Bill 2013 First Reading 25th June 2013 Second Reading 25th June 2013 Third Reading 25th June 2013 The Bill sought to sanction certain payments from the Consolidated and Development Funds in excess of the sums provided by law for the services of the Government of Montserrat for the period ending on the 31st day of March 2013. The Bill was passed with a minor amendment as follows: Part A, Vote 7: Insert an ‘i’ after the letter ‘n’ in the word Administration.

3.

The Introduction and First Reading of the following Bills took place: i.

‘Friendly Societies (Amendment) Bill 2013’ First Reading 25th June 2013

The Bill seeks to amend the Friendly Societies Act (CAP 11.9). Clause 2 sets out the interpretation provision of the Bill, clause 3 inserts a definition of “Registrar”, clause 4 deletes and replaces section 3 of the Act, clauses 5, 6 &7 increases the fines under the Act, clause 8 amends section 89 of the Act, clause 9 deletes section 93 of the Act, clause 10 provides for the Regulations to be set out in the Schedule to the Bill.

Master Act (Cap. 7.02), Part 8 amends the Agricultural Small Holdings Act (Cap. 8.04), Part 9 amends the British National (Fees, Offences and Penalties) Act (Cap. 13.06), Part 10 amends the Medical Act, (Cap 14.02), Part 11 amends the Registration of Building and Civil Engineering Contracting Undertakings Act (Cap 15.07), Part 12 amends the Stamp Act (Cap. 17.02). 4.

ii. ‘Miscellaneous Amendments (Financial Services) Bill 2013’

The Second Reading of the Following Bill took place: ‘Port Security Charge Bill 2013’

First Reading 25th June 2013 The Bill seeks to make consequential amendments to various Financial Services Legislations in order to comply with international best practice in Financial Sector Development as follows:

First Reading 28th May 2013 Second Reading 25 June 2013 5.

i.

(a) Clauses 2-5 amend the Companies Act (Cap. 11.12.) i.e. sections 148A, 199, and 344(1).

The Bill was passed with amendments, a list of which can be obtained from the Legislature Department.

(c) Clause 7 amends the Income and Corporation Tax Act (Cap. 17.01) i.e. section 21

ii. Registration of Business Names (Amendment) Bill 2013

(d) Clause 8 Amends the Limited Partnership Act (Cap. 11.10)

First Reading 28th May 2013 Second Reading 25th June 2013 Third Reading 25th June 2013

(e) Clauses 9-11 amend the International Business Companies Act (Cap. 11.13) i.e. Sections 66, 66A and 103 E,

The Schedule to the Bill seeks to amend the Companies Regulations in the following way: Paragraph 2 amends Form 21 and the Instructions to Form 21 in the Third Schedule to the Companies Regulations. Paragraph 3 amends Form 24 of the Third Schedule to the Companies Regulations. iii. ‘Law Revision (Miscellaneous Amendments) Bill 2013’ th

First Reading 25 June 2013 The Bill seeks to amend 12 pieces of legislation. Part 1 sets out the preliminary provision to the Bill, Part 2 amends the Elections Act (Cap. 1.04), Part 3 amends the Supreme Court Act (Cap. 2.03), Part 4 amends the Notaries Public Act (Cap. 2.13), Part 5 amends the Real Estate Agents Registration (Cap. 6.10), Part 6 amends the Registration and Records Act (Cap 6.12), Part 7 amends the Harbour

‘Income and Corporation Tax (Amendment) Bill 2013’ First Reading 28th May 2013 Second Reading 25th June 2013 Third Reading 25th June 2013

(b) Clause 6 amends the Limited Company Act (Cap. 11.14) by inserting section 34A .

(f) Clauses 12 and 13 amend the Trust Act (CAP. 11.06) i.e. the definition of beneficiary in section 2 and section 31

The Second and Third Readings of the following Bills took place:

The Bill was passed with no amendments. 6.

The following Bill was deferred to the next sitting of the Legislative Assembly: Merchant Shipping Bill 2013 First Reading 28th May 2013 Deferred 25th June 2013

Bills that had their first readings can be read in their entirety at any of the following places: Legislature Department #1 Farara Plaza Brades Montserrat

Legal Department Valley View Brades Montserrat

Sgd. Judith C Baker CLERK OF THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY

Public Library BBC Complex Brades Montserrat

Government of Montserrat Website


Friday, August 09, 2013

Page g 11

New Comms and Works building cont’d. from page 3 companies that completed the design and construction of the project which claims modern international standards. The building provides

three floors of office space with modern amenities that provide workspaces to teamwork required for engineering and design teams, staff comforts and accommodation for the public doing business with

the wider ministry. The Minister’s office is on the third floor and provides a view of the surrounding area to include the MUL power station site, the site for the planned indoor gymna-

sium, government headquarters and an overlook of the port location that is planned for Carr’s Bay. The project cost $3.1 million and forms part of the wider project that will provide standard build-

ings for the ministries and departments based on a total budget of just over $11 million. The move which began the week of July 22 was completed on Friday, July26. Along with the

Montobacco building and several proposed new buildings that will locate on the vacant lands nearby, Brades is now a lively, bustling area that has the look and function of a town centre. Not far away on the way to the new building are the Brades Primary school compound on the left and the Ministry of Agriculture, Housing Land and Environment on the left. Meanwhile, members of the general public are asked to take note of the office relocations as the Public Works Department and the Labour Department will offer services from the new location, starting immediately. Funding for the project was provided by the Department for International Development (DFID)

Photos: New Communication and Works building in Brades, during various stages of its construction

CARIBBEAN DEVELOPMENT BANK JOB OPPORTUNITIES The Caribbean Development Bank is seeking to recruit experienced professionals to fill the following positions at its headquarters located in Barbados: ECONOMICS DEPARTMENT Deputy Director OFFICE OF RISK MANAGEMENT Risk Management Officer Candidates must be nationals of one of CDB’s Member Countries. The Bank’s Member Countries are the Commonwealth Caribbean countries together with Canada, Colombia, Germany, Haiti, Italy, Mexico, the People’s Republic of China, the United Kingdom and Venezuela. CDB is a multilateral development bank that collaborates with its clients to promote sustainable social and economic development, economic cooperation and regional integration. APPLICATIONS Full details of the job opportunities, guidelines for the submission of applications and general information about the Caribbean Development Bank may be obtained from the Bank’s website at http://www.caribank.org. The closing date for applications is August 20, 2013.

Ex-FIFA official Warner wins election in Trinidad

By TONY FRASER, Associated Press

PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad (AP) — Former international soccer official Jack Warner has made a political comeback in the Caribbean nation of Trinidad & Tobago a few months after a regional sports group’s ethics panel accused him of enriching himself through fraud. Preliminary results from a by-election show that Warner easily won back a seat in Parliament just over three months after he was forced to resign from the Trinidadian government because of corruption allegations stemming from his tenure as a longtime soccer power broker. At the time, he also served as the country’s national security minister. Warner thanked a crowd of cheering supporters late Monday after the results showed he received more than twice as many votes as ruling party candidate Khadijah Ameen to reclaim the seat of Chaguanas West. The district is a fastgrowing community in central Trinidad where Warner was first elected as parliamentarian in the 1990s.

Figures from the elections office shows Warner with 12,631 votes. Ameen of Prime Minister Kamla Persad-Bissessar’s United National Congress won 5,126 votes, according to the preliminary tally. “Thank you for this resounding victory,” Warner told celebrating supporters at the headquarters of the Independent Liberal Party that he founded earlier this year to help keep his political career afloat. Warner resigned as national security minister and parliamentarian for Chaguanas West on April 21 after an ethics panel from the Confederation of North and Central American and Caribbean Football accused him of fraudulently managing the body running soccer in the region, an allegation he has denied. Warner is also a former FIFA vice president who was implicated in a bribery scandal while opposing group president Sepp Blatter’s re-election two years ago. In April, Warner claimed FIFA gifted him $6 million toward an athletics training center in Trinidad to gain Caribbean support for Blatter’s first election as president of cont’d. on page 12


Page 12

Friday, August 09, 2013

Procurement rules repealed cont’d from page 1 “carelessness” following up on DFID who had written, “GoM agreed that an ‘across the board’ review of procurement regulations and guidelines, accompanied by staff training, is a priority,” in their February budget aide memoire. The Aide Memoire had noted: A number of procurement and contract management issues arose in year which significantly affected the delivery of both capital projects and government services. There appears to be problems with (i) the adequacy of the procurement regulations; (ii) the lack of procurement and contract management guidelines; and, (iii) limited technical expertise in GoM resulting in misinterpretation of the existing regulations as evidenced by delays to Lookout School and the A1 road upgrade. The general feeling is this last point has been raised several times in critiquing and questioning DFID’s eventual decision to suspend the said road project with that knowledge. No one wishes to be named, but raise varying points, that rather than repealing or changing the rules, GoM should seek to adhere to the Rules they agreed to and put into law. Another asks, “Why are they doing this when funding agents require that they adhere to good procurement rules?” And another, “Without proper tendering process, only the

selected will win tenders and get work!” At the time of writing, there are, in addition to the several earlier complaints and threats of legal action, the said Lookout school matters, settled in favour of a contractor, appealed, but now permission is being sought by GoM for reversal at the Privy Council; and, the geothermal preparatory works at the jetty in Plymouth. Added to this is the Montserrat Development Corporation (MDC) project regarding the structures erected in-house suspiciously and pretentiously. In January this year, GoM issued a release announcing preparatory works for the drilling and the arrival of equipment at the jetty in Plymouth. It referred to an explanation presented by the Premier in a Statement he delivered to the Legislative Assembly in January, when he challenged ZJB radio reports saying, “incorrect information being put in the public arena without checking its veracity… a recent news broadcast reported that the contractors are raising a tortured cry particularly at the way in which actions have been taken with two major projects.” He referred to the dredging around the jetty in the abandoned capital Plymouth to accommodate the docking of the geothermal rig for which the tendering process is now be-

Plymouth Jetty

Jack Warner elected cont’d. from page 11

the soccer federation in 1998. He claimed it was part of a deal in May 1998 with then-FIFA President Joao Havelange. FIFA has declined to comment in detail “on any allegations made by Jack Warner.” Warner’s political revival in Trinidad was met with a subdued response by Persad-Bissessar. The country’s leader was once a staunch political ally of Warner’s but she blasted him during the by-election campaign and insisted that he had to answer questions about the corruption allegations in the soccer group’s report. “This is just one battle in many, many more to come,” Persad-Bissessar said after the preliminary tally was announced. It was not clear whether Persad-Bissessar’s government would try to bring Warner’s party into the ruling coalition. “We offered before the

A victorious Jack Warner wins election by a landslide election and were spurned,” Warner told a local television station on Tuesday. “It will not be up to me to offer again but rather the interim executive of the party and we will meet on Thursday or Friday to discuss that possibility.” On Tuesday, opposition leader Keith Rowley painted the

by-election result as a “damaging blow” for Persad-Bissessar’s government and called for fresh elections. Persad-Bissessar’s coalition government still controls 27 of the 41 parliamentary seats in Trinidad & Tobago, a leading supplier of natural gas just off Venezuela’s coast.

ing challenged. He said: “… dredging of the jeƩy area in Plymouth to accommodate the vessel bringing in the equipment was approved by Cabinet in the naƟonal interest. This aŌer, the two contractors bids, one bid at $3 million and the other at $0.5 million were rejected.” He continued to explain: “Discussions were held with the group that had submitted the lower bid. The vessel bringing the rig and materials for the geothermal project was expected to arrive on the 18th of January and it was determined that it was not timely to go back to public tender. Cabinet intervened in the national interest and suggested an approach which was eventually taken. In the absence of this decision, if the vessel had arrived as scheduled, the demurrage cost for the ship along with associated costs would have been in excess of $90,000 per day.

It was suggested that retendering would have pushed the works back by over a month which would cost government potentially over $1million.” He pointed out, “We are not seeking to break any rules here but we are simply using good judgement,” but then admitted, “I will admit that errors were made in tendering process and these are being examined to ensure corrective action is taken for any future tenders. Madam Speaker, when mistakes are made we will seek to correct those errors.” We have reported that the Premier, joined by the Premier has often complained about people in Montserrat being to litigious, while advising if anyone is not satisfied they may take the matter to the courts. Sources have informed that the matter above is among several that redress is being sought and the question asked, “how can the GoM not admit liability after the Premiers acknowledgement of mistakes?”

Geothermal and procurement issues One other problem that may well haunt GoM and DFID, in a different way is the procurement of the geothermal rig for exploring the resource. It is believed that mistakes were also made in the procurement process and that the delay in obtaining or reporting with certainty the results of the drilling to date may be embarrassing. We have been seeking updated official information on the status of the exploration of the geothermal resource in Cork Hill since the completion of drilling of Well #2. We recall a GoM release which stated after drilling ended at Well #1: ““The results were very encouraging and it was unanimously agreed to stop drilling and to line the production area of the well. A 7” steel, perforated, liner pipe was installed from 1,111m down to the bottom of the well (2,298m),” following temperature and pressure surveys that were undertaken in the well by a geophysicist Thorstein Egilson using specialist measuring tools. GoM Geothermal Adviser Mike Allen, Senior Geologist Paul Brophy, Senior Geophysicist Graham Ryan and Geothermal Drilling Project Manager George Scheid had all studied the surveys and a subsequent report. There is a fear among observers and concerned parties that while it is accepted, that the resource exists in the area drilled, drilling has been insufficient to readily access it, and this is the direct result of improper procurement. Reliable sources have indicated that GoM, and DFID are currently in discussions as how to proceed in view of some of the concerns already expressed on the geothermal exploration. It is believed that efforts are under way to find a means of expanding on the drilling that had been done so far. In a Summary of Results from first Geothermal Drilling Well, seeds of doubt were already seen where the report stated: “Preliminary studies also suggested a good likelihood that permeable zones would be reached in the 1500-2000 meter range. However, precise location of these permeable zones is not possible at the current time (in fact, predictions of permeable zones is currently the focus of intense scientific research). “MON-1 (Well#1) was originally designed to be drilled to a maximum depth of 2000 meters. However, while temperatures were high there was no indication of permeable zones that would allow hot water to flow into the well. Therefore the well was deepened to a depth of 2298 meters a permeable zone was found at 2142 m…” Since then all the activities at that well and now at Well #2, were designed to carry out: “Temperature and pressure measurements (to be) made over several weeks as the well warms up. When the well is fully warmed it will be ‘flow tested’ for several days to determine how much power it can produce…” That release is dated May 21, 2013, eleven weeks ago. MGPC members are reporting anxiety and are calling for more information and transparency in the progress. “ Some report is well overdue for on the findings. The Iceland Drilling Company (IDC) had been executing the drilling operation, which is being fully funded by the Department for International Development (DFID) as part of its support of capital investment projects aimed at making Montserrat, according to them, more financial independent.

The Montserrat Reporter - 9 August 2013  

Procurement 2012 rules repealed? Why? Anti-money laundering serious business...pg 2 New Comms & Works home...pg 3 PetroCaribe rates to go up...

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