FRIDAY i’m lovin’ it!
Volume:115 No.179, AUGUST 10TH, 2018
THE CREAM OF THE SCHOLAR CROP - PAGE TWO
Show us some respect, please LET IT ALL SHOUT
Nurses threaten new action after press blunder By MORGAN ADDERLEY Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org BAHAMAS Nurses Union President Amancha Williams yesterday criticised the Ministry of Labour for its “disrespect” and again threatened industrial action, ratcheting up the fight between the bargaining union and the government over various disputes. The new row came after the ministry issued a press release about the non-validity of the union’s recent
strike vote. The press release was later rescinded. Ms Williams told The Tribune that the union members were not made aware of the rescinded notice until reporters informed them of it. The BNU also renewed its threat to take action due to these grievances. The Public Hospitals Authority also released a memorandum yesterday confirming that a shift change for its nurses will go into effect on September 3. SEE PAGE FIVE
ONE of two men arraigned yesterday in a Magistrate’s Court in connection with a thwarted escape plot at the Bahamas Department of Correctional Services admitted he used a piece of steel from a prison bathroom to cut a hole in his cell’s ceiling over a two-month period. Mario Taylor, 36, and Fred Lifaite, 45, appeared before Magistrate Cara
Turnquest, charged with attempted escape from the facility and damage in the amount of $900 for a portion of the ceiling. It is alleged the men, being concerned together between Tuesday, October 3, 2017, and Friday, August 3, of this year, conspired to escape their A-block cell at the facility through a hole dug into the ceiling. In a statement on the incident earlier this week, Minister of National SEE PAGE FIVE
‘WHAT A WASTE OF MONEY’ By RASHAD ROLLE Tribune Staff Reporter email@example.com HUMAN rights group Rights Bahamas is blasting the government’s intention to pay lawyers outside the Office of the Attorney General for representation in a major judicial review case about shanty towns, calling it a “waste” of money at a time when the government is cutting back on its school uniform budget for the less fortunate. Supreme Court Justice Cheryl Grant Thompson granted leave last week for a judicial review of the government’s actions on the shanty towns. She subsequently granted an injunction preventing the government from demolishing homes in the areas. SEE PAGE SEVEN
LIGHTHOUSE POINT MUST BE SAVED AS NATIONAL PARK By MORGAN ADDERLEY Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org THE Bahamas National Trust yesterday confirmed its efforts to secure Lighthouse Point as a national park and a “model for sustainable” development. Lighthouse Point is a 700-acre peninsula located at the southern tip of Eleuthera. The Tribune understands Lighthouse Point, despite its history and importance to the island of Eleuthera, sits on a privately-owned property that is now listed for sale by Bahamas Realty and is also listed on the Bahamas Real Estate Association’s website. SEE PAGE NINE
‘I’M GUILTY’ - JAILBREAKER GETS THREE MORE YEARS By RICARDO WELLS Tribune Staff Reporter email@example.com
THE PEOPLE’S PAPER: $1
MUSIC and magic came together at the Bahamas Christian Fellowship Centre for a show starring Disney and Cirque de Soleil star Cheetah Platt. See today’s Weekend section for more on the show. Photo: Shawn Hanna/Tribune Staff
‘WE’LL PAY TARANIQUE’S BILLS’ By AVA TURNQUEST Tribune Chief Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org
THE government has arranged to pay for stateless teen Taranique Thurston’s medical treatment and travel costs, her mother Ginette Caty confirmed yesterday. Officials were said to be working on obtaining a US visa for Taranique’s certificate of identity under
TARANIQUE THURSTON emergency circumstances, Ms Caty was told. She is scheduled for
brain surgery at Jacksonville Memorial Hospital on August 28. “They confirmed to pay for the ticket, the hotel, a small stipend and then the medical treatment,” she said. “They called us in for an interview this morning, and while we were in there they called the hospital and confirmed the surgery. I’m so SEE PAGE THREE
Nassau & Bahama Islands’ Leading Newspaper
VICTIM DEAD IN LATEST HOMICIDE A VICTIM was killed last night in the latest homicide in New Providence. Few details of the incident were confirmed at the time of going to press, but police said that officers were at the scene of a homicide at Taylor Street, off Victoria Road, at the corner by Porky’s service station. No further details of the victim were available last night. For more details, see www.tribune242.com.
THE BRIGHTEST AND BEST
PAGE 2, Friday, August 10, 2018
THE MINISTRY of Educationâ€™S All Bahamas Merit and National Merit Scholars Award ceremony in the Government House Ballroom yesterday and, right, 2017 All Bahamas Merit Scholar Paloma Cartwright. Photos: Shawn Hanna/Tribune Staff
SOLANGE ALLEN, National Merit Scholarship Recipient, being presented her award by Governor General Dame Marguerite Pindling and Minister of Education Jeff Lloyd.
YOUNG scholars being congratulated by Minister of Education Jeff Lloyd.
SEAN KNOWLES, National Merit Scholarship Recipient, receiving his award.
ARRON EDGECOMBE, 2018 All Bahamas Merit Scholar, speaking yesterday.
ANGEL CULMER, National Merit Scholarship Recipient, being presented her award.
SHAWNTE CURTIS, National Merit Scholarship Recipient.
DERRICK FERGUSON, father of 2018 All Bahamas Merit runner-up Derrica Ferguson, speaking yesterday.
Friday, August 10, 2018, PAGE 3
‘We’ll pay Taranique’s bills’
from page one
relieved, I mean I had a few days of just not eating but this is just so...God is good. “Taranique really wasn’t doing too good (Wednesday) just with the massive headaches and stressed about the document saying she’s Haitian.This is just great news and it’s giving her hope. “She’s still really upset and saying she just wants to go far away or not be anywhere at all but the most important part is that she is getting the surgery.” The government issued a certificate of identity for Taranique last week Friday, which stated her nationality as Haitian. Ms Caty said her daughter was deeply hurt by the move as she identifies as Bahamian, and felt as though her country of birth did not want her. Due to her mother’s naturalisation process, Taranique is currently registered in the Bahamas as a non-Bahamian born to a foreign mother and Bahamian father, who are unmarried. Ms Caty, 34, was naturalised as a Bahamian citizen in 2013 – more than a decade after she had applied at the required age of 18. Ms Caty was born in The Bahamas to a Mexican mother and a Haitian father. Up until last week, she had been repeatedly told that her daughter will have to wait until her 18th birthday before she can apply
TARANIQUE Thurston speaking to The Tribune this week. for Bahamian citizenship. She said she was also repeatedly told by immigration officials to go to the Haitian embassy - but was told her daughter did not have an automatic claim to citizenship as had been intimated by the Bahamas government. According to the Haitian constitution, Article 11, “any person born of a Haitian father or Haitian mother who are themselves native-born Haitians and have never renounced their nationality possesses Haitian nationality at the time of birth.”
However, this entitlement is reportedly not extended to second or third generation descendants whose parents were not themselves native-born Haitians. Yesterday, Ms Caty said: “I’m still a little distressed about what this Haitian situation mean, (Taranique) she’s really upset about it. She tell me I just don’t know how it feel. She read about one of her former classmates in the paper, and it really send her over the edge. “She kept talking about how smart he was,” Ms
MEMBERS of the Lions Club of Freeport donated items to Rabertha Senior Citizens Home. Seen second from right is president Gwen Symonette-Pinder and administrator Albertha Hudson, fourth from right, and a resident, Granville Johnson. Photo: Denise Maycock/Tribune Staff
LIONS CLUB HELPING SENIOR CITIZENS HOME By DENISE MAYCOCK Tribune Freeport Reporter email@example.com FREEPORT Lions Club has donated a number of items to the Raybertha Senior Citizens Home in Freeport. President Gwen Symonette-Pinder said the Lion’s Club is committed to assisting people in the Grand Bahama community, especially organisations that cater to the most vulnerable in society. “Our organisation was the recipient of some donated items from Be the Light Inc and we decided to present these canned goods and toiletries to Ms Albertha Hudson to assist the home and its residents here,” she said. “We want them to know that we care and that we are always willing to assist and give back to the community. I hope this presentation will go a long way to assist the
residents here,” said Ms Symonette-Pinder. She urged other organisations to support and give back to their community. “We are encouraging other civic organisations also to give back and help those in need,” she said. Albertha Hudson, the administrator of the Raybertha Home, thanked the Lion’s Club for the donation. “We are very grateful for the donation,” she said noting that contributions
have not been steady this year. “Donations to the home have not been steady, but every now and then whenever we receive something we truly appreciate it,” she said. The home has been in operation since 2005 and caters to some 12 elderly men. But Ms Hudson said organisers also have another unit that caters to women at another location.
Photo: Shawn Hanna/Tribune Staff Caty continued, “they were in the same math class. So she’s shocked about that too and disheartened.” The Tribune published a profile on 17-year-old Johnson Davilma this week. Johnson has been accepted into multiple American tertiary institutions, including Florida Memorial University, Fisk University, and Philander Smith College, and been offered partial scholarships to two of these schools. However, in order to make his dream a reality,
Johnson requires additional funding. Unfortunately, his status as the child of Haitian immigrants means that he does not meet the criteria for receiving Bahamian government scholarships. And as a 17-year-old, he is a full year too young to apply for Bahamian citizenship. “Things have to change, it have to be a little more love, when it comes to the children who born here with this Bahamian title,” Ms Caty said. “They should not be compared to the ones with the Haitian
title because they originated from there. Today, one of the ladies who walk in while I was being interviewed, she was a Thurston. And she saw Taranique name and say all Thurston is my family from Cat Island, and I’m just like wow. Do you even know what we’ve been through, and you can say that so easily.” She added: “But I’m trying to cheer her up, to get her in the spirit so she could be a good place for this surgery. She’s really sad by all the negativity that’s come up.”
PAGE 4, Friday, August 10, 2018
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So, how did we get here? “I’M going to build a wall, a big one, and keep these people out.” So promised Donald Trump and in doing so pulled on the cord of white America’s deep seated fear of immigration and won himself a seat in the White House. In the UK, British premier David Cameron also thought he’d hit on an electoral winner by promising the public a vote on whether the country should stay or leave the European Union. Forget what many claim - all Cameron was doing was trying to put a lid on internal battles within his Conservative Party which have haunted it since Britain joined its European neighbours. Unfortunately for Cameron he’d let the genie out of the bottle - exactly as happened in the US. Having seen millions of East Europeans enter the country - legally - over the previous decade white, migrant-fearing Britons said “enough” and the result was Brexit. Exit Cameron leaving his successor Theresa May to cope with the fallout - to date, incredibly badly. And so to our own Prime Minister. On October 11 last year, Dr Minnis stood up in parliament and announced his government’s new priority. More jobs? Education? Crime? Power? Health? Fighting corruption? All those topics which had dominated the months leading up to May’s election and which had swept the FNM into power. No, the issue which Dr Minnis now felt desperately needed to be tackled was illegal Haitian migrants. Reporters covering the assembly that day scratched their heads. Where had this come from - not a mention of it in the FNM manifesto of just a few short months ago? So what had changed? The migrants have pretty much always been there, doing the jobs Bahamians won’t do themselves, a large, silent underclass who - at some point in their own family’s history - made the desperate journey from Haiti in the hope of a better life here or, if they were lucky, further north in the US. Some still try to make the same journey but, thanks to the RBDF, most are picked up en route or after their sloop runs aground. Cynics drew the conclusion that five months into government Dr Minnis had quickly realised he needed something to divert the public’s attention from his new government’s attempts to deliver what they’d promised. It clearly hadn’t taken them long to discover that with no money to spend, tens of millions more in debts uncovered, their hands were going to be pretty much tied - certainly in the early years in office when “quick wins” would be expected. So, if it was good enough for Trump and for Cameron, find a scapegoat and turn the spotlight on them. Stage One. A deadline of December 31 to leave the country. Harsh words from the PM and his ministers. Get regularised or get out - that was the message. In the shanty towns of New Providence, Abaco and the Family Islands families’ first real concerns started to surface. They’d seen such initiatives before and come through them. How hard was this one going to be? With his new near-absolute majority in the House, Dr Minnis could be excused for thinking he was going to get his way in all things in government and outside. There were others who saw things differently, chief among them Fred Smith the extravagant - and for many - deeply unpopular human rights lawyer. Thing with Fred - who’d been among the loudest champions to help the FNM into office - is he loves a scrap, especially when he sees something is wrong and the law - as he understands it - is on his side. He didn’t pick this fight. He had high hopes for Dr Minnis, his Attorney General Carl Bethel and Immigration Minister Brent Symonette. The fight came to him when the first victims of Dr Minnis’ surprise offensive started knocking on his door. First was the family of Jean Charles Jean Rony who had been pulled off the streets of the country where he was
born, thrown in Carmichael detention centre and, when Fred started asking questions quoting constitution and the law, they quietly shipped Jean Rony off to Haiti. Problem was, with a little bit of help, Fred brought him back and, so far, the courts have consistently ruled Fred’s petitions are right and Mr Bethel and Co. in the wrong. As we know the December 31 deadline came and went without much actually happening. The story died down until, on the back of fires in the Mud in Abaco, Haitian-descendant migrants came back in the government’s sights. Round Two. If they couldn’t freely deport these people the government decided they’d knock down the houses where they lived. Again, no mention of this in the FNM manifesto. No letters demanding this in The Tribune or Nassau Guardian demanding action. Just an unprompted “pogrom” making the government look tough. Why do they need to do it? Well, perhaps the scant progress on those other things which were supposed to change - jobs, health, education, crime, corruption - all those promises to deliver “the people’s time”. So Fred had to put on his gloves again and get back in the ring. He’d done his homework again, read up on the law, building codes, certificates, permissions - all the things you’d have thought a caring government would have done first before knocking on someone’s door - anyone’s - and telling him “move, we’re demolishing your house”. An unconcerned Carl Bethel tried to reassure us everything was in order and a class action brought by Fred would have little chance of success. In went Fred’s claim and last weekend, just as he expected, a judge slapped an injunction on the government stopping them doing anything until the legality of the threatened demolitions could be proved. To outsiders, Mr Bethel would appear to have looked less confident of his position when he announced in the Senate on Wednesday he had now brought in outside counsel to argue the government’s case. Wasn’t that exactly what happened in the ongoing corruption trials - outside lawyers parachuted in at the last minute when the government’s case appeared to be falling apart? Fred must be shaking in his boots. So what does tomorrow bring? The story will play out in the courts over the coming months, Fred will have his victories and his setbacks as will the government. We’ll continue to cover both sides impartially - but driven by one thing this government seems to have forgotten: it’s humanity. There was a glimpse it’s there this week, buried not too far beneath the surface just waiting to be revealed. It came in the story of Taranique Thurston, a teenager desperately ill who needs to travel to the US for surgery. Fred, of course, alerted us to the story because it was to him the family had turned for help. He kept out of the headlines because it was about Taranique, no-one else. We reported how she couldn’t get to the US because under current citizenship regulations she is effectively, stateless. We put her story on the front page for the first time a fortnight ago. Surely, we thought, the government would forget the rules and jump in immediately - as it had the power to do - and help Taranique on to a plane. At first silence, so we did it again. Surely it must dawn on someone in this government to see this was an easy win. Pick up the phone, make the call, make it happen. But another week went by until, finally, we heard moves were being made to help her. Yesterday, the government seemed to be ending her ordeal signalling she will get there and in fact pay her airfare and the costs of her treatment. Credit where credit is due - actions which deserve to be commended. Well done those few who took up the challenge. We won’t forget. If only there were so much more we could applaud.
Wrong to back down EDITOR, The Tribune..
IMAGINE a government so hard up for revenues that it raises consumption taxes on its poor and middle classes by 60 percent, then heroically ignores the outcry of the whole population for a reconsideration. Imagine the fiscal situation getting so dismal that the government cuts assistance for (mandatory) uniforms to the children of its most vulnerable, again boldly ignoring all pleas. Now imagine that same government, faced with the opportunity to remove an unjustified tax cap that affects only people with homes valued at over $3.3m, backing down in the face of a single letter from 800 wealthy landowners and agreeing to keep the regressive cap (and forego the prospective revenues) without so much as a whisper of consultation with the masses of the population. Sound absurd? Welcome to Bahamas in 2018. What makes the latest, mindboggling decision by our political leaders so maddening is that, while they ignored the most compelling arguments against earlier tax decisions by the country’s most seasoned economists, they appear to have been taken in by the farcically nonsensical reasoning set out in the letter by Mr Henry Cabot Lodge III. According to Mr Cabot Lodge, he and his fellow residents of Lyford Cay would find it so objectionable to be subject (without qualifications) to the same rate of Real Property Tax as those living in Yellow Elder, that they would consider leaving the country without some special consideration being given to their wealth and what it brings to our country.
LETTERS firstname.lastname@example.org Suffice it to say, this viewpoint is repugnant both from a moral and an economic standpoint. A morally responsible Real Property tax (such as exists in Mr Cabot Lodge’s own country) favours less wealthy people and exempts the very poorest altogether. Within such a progressive tax regime, a cap on the rate of increase of taxation (to, say three percent) for the wealthiest is understandable. This is common in the USA. But a cap on an arbitrary dollar amount is pure insanity. Its only effect is to actually reverse the progressive equation and impose on a man with a $250,000 home in Golden Gates a higher rate of taxation (1.5 percent) than that of a wealthy foreign resident with a $10m home in Lyford Cay (0.005 percent). While government has clarified that it only ever proposed to remove the cap for “commercial” (ie rental) properties, this means that ‘owner occupied’ homes valued at $3.3m and more remain the beneficiaries of a policy that will benefit nobody else. Is that fair and equitable? Economically it makes no sense because, with all due respect to Mr Cabot Lodge and friends, our economy simply does not need them. In fact, contrary to a common perception, their presence here is not even a factor in our high GDP per capita on paper. For the record, the wealth of permanent residents is generally not calculated within The Bahamas’ GDP, which, by definition, is confined to domestically generated wealth. While
an American hedge fund manager or owner of a tech firm may live in Lyford Cay, his corporate income is reflected in the GDP of the United States (which it distorts upwardly, leaving most Americans unaffected by the economic boom their politicians are currently boasting of) while profits come mainly from places like China. That they live part time in Lyford Cay may be a boon to the Philipino maids they employ, but it impacts the Bahamian economy to a far lesser extent than the collective spending of the residents of Carmichael, for instance, both on paper and in reality. The Bahamas’ high GDP per capita results from the impact on our small population of large, serviceoriented investments like Atlantis, Baha Mar and Baker’s Bay. The tens of thousands of salaries they pay and the large scale services they consume provide massive foreign exchange to the Bahamian economy. By comparison, the contribution of wealthy foreign residents is miniscule and, in some senses (like pricing Bahamians out of limited real estate) is arguably negative. Ultimately, what Mr Cabot Lodge and friends need to be reminded is that, unlike some of the jurisdictions that may be chomping at the bit for their likes to become residents, we in The Bahamas are a wealthy country. And while we have never had a shortage of wealthy people from all over the world happy to live among us, their presence is by no stretch of the imagination the reason for that wealth, or even a major contributing factor. ANDREW ALLEN Nassau. May 9, 2018
Funeral duration EDITOR, The Tribune. FUNERALS - what is the respectable length of them? We had one a few years ago that seemingly was trying to establish a Guinness Book record - started at 10.30am and finished close to 5.30pm! Baptist funerals depending on the number of speeches allowed, can run three to four hours - contrasting to Methodist most time under two hours, but for best time saver the
Catholics hog that position very, very rarely over an hour and a quarter, whoever it is, as there are no speeches. You do all that stuff at the memorial the day before. Last week and honestly no reflection on the deceased, we had an Official funeral, which went on for four plus hours. Surely Cabinet Office should impose some protocol that would ensure a reasonable respectful time but put a limit on that? The State is paying for it
or partially - we line-up the Police-Defence Force and many civil servants leave their jobs for as close to a whole day (it all costs). Whilst on State paid funerals, how much is budgeted for Military Funerals for the Police-Defence Force and if I see right even the prison? Some weeks you see three to four of these! ABRAHAM MOSS, Nassau, August 7, 2018.
Friday, August 10, 2018, PAGE 5
Show us some respect, please from page one In the press release issued early yesterday morning, the ministry declared the strike vote poll taken by the BNU on June 7 null and void because some nurses on three Family Islands did not have an opportunity to vote. Less than two hours later, the ministry sent a follow up email, asking the initial press release be held if possible, in light of “new developments”. “It’s disrespectful that the reporters got it before the union,” Ms Williams told The Tribune. “We know nothing of it. We have not gotten an official letter. We were not called to the roundtable. So we’re going to show them the disrespect in a (little) bit. Tell them look for the disrespect from us in a (little) bit.”
When asked what form this could take, Ms Williams said: “We will take it to the streets, that’s what we (are going to) do. Tell (Director of Labour) John Pinder, you don’t disrespect us. We taking care of the patients. We demand respect. If you had something to say to us, you don’t go to the public, to the reporters first…that’s unprofessional.” Last week, Mr Pinder told this newspaper that Ms Williams should stop her threats now that the government has committed to start paying nurses overdue funds this month. For her part, Ms Williams added that she had not been made aware of the fact that the ministry had asked for the statement to be held. Ms Williams said on Wednesday she delivered a letter to the ministry
FRED LIFAITE, 45, outside court yesterday.
regarding concerns in reference to the strike certificate. According to Ms Williams, in the letter she detailed that in “Inagua, efforts were made to contact the authority via internet and fax. However, it appears that their system (was) down.” She added similar issues affected Mayaguana and San Salvador. “We only could say what we received, okay?” Ms Williams said. “We were just like anybody else, waiting to hear from these islands who voted and who we sent to. The BNU has not received any complaints…from any of our members to say they were being denied the opportunity to vote. Those who were trying to reach us, we sent it by email and fax, ok?” Ms Williams also pointed
Photos: Terrel W Carey/Tribune Staff
to the small number of nurses on the islands in question, saying: “The first three islands don’t even have six nurses— each island has two nurses each. Which will not make a difference. The fact and the thing that makes a difference is the majority of nurses said ‘yes’ (to a strike vote) — 377 nurses.” The BNU president also questioned whether the ministry is using this as an opportunity or an “escape” to prevent the union from having its strike certificate. Labour Minister Dion Foulkes confirmed to The Tribune yesterday that he had received the BNU’s letter confirming the three islands in question did not receive ballots. “The (law) mandates that all union members (should) have an opportunity to vote. So because of that
irregularity, it was impossible for me to certify the strike vote,” Mr Foulkes said. Yesterday, the Public Hospitals Authority also released a memorandum announcing its decision to commence its “comprehensive standardised shift system” for its nursing complement throughout all of its institutions starting September 3. Under this system, nurses will have to work eighthour shifts, “including those nurses previously assigned to the night shift.” “This change will in effect eliminate the current ‘four on, four off’ system, resulting in increased availability of nurses in our nursing pool, while reducing working hours per day for nurses currently working the night shifts,” the statement continued. The PHA added that by
reducing work hours from ten hours per day to eight hours for night duty, nurses would reduce the risk of medical error. Request for response from the BNU regarding this matter were unanswered up to press time. The issue of shift changes has been an ongoing source of contention between the BNU and the PHA. On August 1, the BNU’s executive board demonstrated outside Princess Margaret Hospital regarding its ongoing issues with the PHA and the government. On April 30, more than 200 registered and trained clinical nurses staged a “sick out”. One issue that angered them was a 12-hour shift foreign nurses, who are not a part of the union, were asked to work at the time.
MARIO TAYLOR, 36, outside court.
‘I’M GUILTY’ - JAILBREAKER GETS THREE MORE YEARS from page one Security Marvin Dames confirmed the hole was discovered in the male dormitory during a routine check shortly before 1pm last Friday. Taylor entered pleas of guilty to both offences and in his address to the court, took full responsibility for the acts, insisting that he both plotted and executed the offences alone. Taylor, who was committed to prison last October for an undisclosed offence, said he has battled “personal problems” since being sentenced. He explained his time in
prison has been hard, suggesting medical issues with an aunt and other family matters have taken a toll on him, placing him in a frame of mind in which he “wanted to assist”. Taylor admitted he removed a piece of steel from a bathroom at the facility and moved it to his cell. He told the court he hid the item in a section of the ceiling he had access to. He later added that over the course of two months, he used the steel to chip away at the ceiling while his cellmates were out in the yard. Taylor, in agreeing to the details of his offences,
admitted he used three buckets left in his cell to reach the ceiling. He also acknowledged he would hide his efforts using a curtain to prevent passing officers and prisoners from looking into his cell while he carried out his plot. Taylor said once he was successful in creating an area to enter the roof, he did so on two occasions to hide a bag of clothes and to further attempt to cut into the facility’s metal roof. He said he was unsuccessful in his attempt to carry out the latter. In their discovery of the hole, prison officials said
they also discovered a garbage bag with a rope made of cloth. Taylor was sentenced to three years for the attempted escape and two
years for the damage to the ceiling. The sentences are to run concurrently. He has been given seven days to appeal the ruling.
As for Lifaite, he entered not guilty pleas to both charges. The court adjourned the case against Lifaite to October 4 for trial.
CHOICE FOR THE FAMILY WWW.FACEBOOK.COM/JOYFM1019
PAGE 6, Friday, August 10, 2018
Empowerment zone could also help Family Islands By KHRISNA RUSSELL Deputy Chief Reporter email@example.com
THE government wants the Economic Empowerment Zone Act’s provisions to surpass the confines of New Providence and aid the advancement of Family Island economies where there is an urgent need for support. However, it is unclear how the new law, which was passed in the Senate yesterday, will work along with the Family Islands Development Encouragement Act. According to Attorney General Carl Bethel in the Senate yesterday, ahead of the legislation’s debate in both lower and upper chambers of Parliament, Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis began work on the Crown land registry. A proper registry will greatly support the success of this law, Mr Bethel said, adding it was an expression of confidence in Bahamians. “This is a bill that applies throughout The Bahamas and the prime minister has already, you notice he’s been making a lot of Family Island trips,” he said yesterday during debate on the legislation in the Senate. “He’ll say he going down there to talk about VAT or he’s going to talk about this that and the other, he’s also going to do something very important. “He takes with him usually Crown land officers to identify tracts of Crown land that are available and suitable for residential development. So, he has got an inventory of available tracts and allotments of Crown land from one end of this country to the next. “It would be Crown lands that generally abuts or affronts on the Queen’s Highway or the main road. Crown lands that are next to existing traditional settlement areas where you
ATTORNEY General Carl Bethel. can have natural growth and expansion of home owning of Bahamians at minimal infrastructural costs. He has an inventory of that and he’s adding to it every single time he visits a Family Island.” Mr Bethel continued: “Because the intention is that going forward over the coming year and years remaining in this term in office - this, the prime minister’s first term in office, that we confidently hope and expect will be extended by the grace of God and
the Bahamians people in due course - that over this term what will happen is that certain tracts will be surveyed off and allotments crafted and marked out and surveyed. “The government will then come in and put in the essential infrastructure, a roadway making sure that water lines and electricity poles are in place and similarly these areas will be declared to be economic empowerment zones, which will then allow persons to utilise the law that
we’ve crafted to build in government approved subdivisions their own dwelling homes and so we will see the orderly expansion of housing opportunities to thousands of Family Island residents throughout the length and breadth of this country so that the same opportunities will be afforded for the purchase of what we call serviced lots at below cost. “The only cost being the cost of infrastructural improvement will be extended to them and they will have customs duty
exemptions on all of the building supplies. “But once an economic zone is declared, it will also facilitate businesses by Family Island residents to be established and to have all of the exemptions that are set out in this bill.” Mr Bethel said Crown land also will be approved to established businesses. He said he told senators this was the first government in history to make law provisions to benefit the average Bahamian. “So the perennial
complaint of Bahamians is that their generation land or land that they consider commonage or Crown land are unavailable to them will be addressed in a systematic way, in a lawful way by a caring government that is going to make available to Bahamians the same economic exemptions that same tax incentives the foreigners get when they say they want to open a business or open up a hotel or do any kind of economic activity,” Mr Bethel said.
FORENSIC AUDIT ON FINANCE ‘COMPLETE’ By RASHAD ROLLE Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org
AN American firm’s forensic audit of the Ministry of Finance is complete, The Tribune understands.
It’s not clear when the audit report by FTI Consulting Global will be released to the public.
In March, Financial Secretary Marlon Johnson told The Nassau Guardian the audit flowed from
matters brought to the government’s attention that merited further review. “I don’t want to get into the details of the specifics of which (administration the audit is focused on), it’s suffice to say that there have been some transactions that upon deep diving review the government determined merited a further review and that audit is ongoing,” he said at the time. Yesterday, he said the audit report is being finalised to his knowledge. Among the matters the audit will be expected to shed light are mysteries surrounding the Gladstone Road Waste Water Treatment Plant which were raised in a previous audit of the Water & Sewerage Corporation. EY, formerly known as Ernst & Young, chronicled how that project remained unfinished despite a 91 percent cost overrun. The firm revealed two unusual payments were ordered for Nassau Island Development over the objections of senior WSC officials. It is not known who approved the payments. In March, Mr Johnson told The Tribune that the matter was among those under investigation. Cabinet announced in March 2017 that forensic
audits would be conducted into the Urban Renewal programme, the Bank of the Bahamas and the Bahamas Agriculture and Marine Science Institute. This year, however, press secretary Anthony Newbold admitted the administration’s “verbiage” about this may have been off. “I don’t know if they will be forensic but there certainly will be audits,” he said. Forensic audits have been performed into Bahamas Power & Light and the WSC so far. BAMSI is being forensically audited by Pannel, Kerr & Forester International. The government has been slow to reveal the cost of the audits. BPL Chairwoman Darnell Osbourne revealed that institution’s audit cost $300k. The cost of the WSC audit remains unknown. Tennyson Wells, chairman of BAMSI’s board, said yesterday his institution has budgeted $80,000 to $100,000 for their forensic audit. Pannel, Kerr & Foster International began the audit in May. Mr Wells said they initially indicated the audit would take eight to twelve weeks to complete but recently indicated it will take a bit longer.
NOTICE Notice is hereby given that CALEB CENAT of Pinders Point Lighthouse Circle, Freeport, Grand Bahama, Bahamas is applying to the Minister responsible for nationality and Citizenship, for Registration/Naturalization as a citizen of The Bahamas, and that any person who knows any reason why registration/ naturalization should not be granted, should send a written signed statement of the facts within twenty-eight days from the 10th August, 2018 to the Minister responsible for Nationality and Citizenship, P.O.Box N7147, Nassau, The Bahamas.
Friday, August 10, 2018, PAGE 7
Lights out as island hit by power outages By KHRISNA RUSSELL Deputy Chief Reporter email@example.com AS a foreign expert assesses Bahamas Power and Light’s instabilities, residents in several areas of New Providence were plunged into darkness on Wednesday night after an engine at the Clifton Pier power plant malfunctioned, resulting in a load shedding exercise - with a further power outage last night. According to BPL there were challenges with the generation plant resulting in an interruption to power supply for customers in Stapleton, portions of Thompson Blvd, portions of Oakes Field, Mackey Street, East Bay Street east of the bridge, Blair Estates, portions of Coral Harbour, Boatswain Hill and Lyford Cay. At the time, it was estimated some customers would be without electricity for two hours. However, there were some residents outside of the mentioned
THE AREA above the high voltage distribution line near the Blue Hill power station last night. While damage was minimal due to safety mechanisms, a small area of asphalt experienced damage from recoil. areas who complained of power disruptions for more than the stated time frame. Last night, BPL reported a “system disturbance” at about 7.40pm which led to outages in a number of areas across New Providence. At about 10pm, BPL said that power had been restored to all customers - although some people reported areas still without power. The issue led Progressive Liberal Party Chairman Fred Mitchell to demand
full disclosure from Works Minister Desmond Bannister regarding BPL’s power generation issues along with what he claimed to be human resource problems. He claimed these were the result of too many employees opting to accept voluntary separation packages, adding the government was clueless and had no plan for BPL. In response, Mr Bannister denied Mr Mitchell’s insisting that the PLP was a “reckless and untruthful”
NORTH ANDROS PLANT HIT BY BLAZE PORTIONS of North Andros were without electricity for some time yesterday after a fire at Bahamas Power and Light’s plant on the island. In a press release, BPL said the company was working to restore power after a fire started around 3.45am yesterday at one of its rental generator units at its North Andros power plant.
The cause of the fire is still being investigated. “BPL employees immediately shut down all fuel lines supplying the generator, preventing the fire from spreading beyond the unit,” the company said. “The fire was contained at approximately 6am, however the unit was completely destroyed. Although the damage caused by the fire
was significant, BPL officials are thankful that there were no reported injuries to employees or to the public.” BPL said as a result of the fire, consumers in North Andros could experience intermittent outages as the company continues its investigations and seeks to return its system to at state of normalcy.
party that sat “in their infamous fake news war room creating and disseminating fables in their unrepentant attempts to mislead, alarm and frighten the Bahamian public”. He said the diligent employees of BPL were hard at work correcting the many generation, transmission and distribution challenges that resulted from years of PLP mismanagement. Regarding Wednesday’s disruption, Paul Maynard, Bahamas Electrical Workers Union president, explained one of two engines at the power generation plant shut down presenting serious challenges for crews who could not for some time return it to an operational status. He said officials had to then load shed. In June, BPL officials pledged there would be no load shedding this summer. “This is about the third time (this summer),” Mr Maynard said yesterday when he was contacted. “The other two times weren’t drastic. You could shut off buildings that have big transformers, those commercial ones so we didn’t have to come to the public until last night.” And there could be more load shedding Mr Maynard said as he stressed “ancient” equipment made it more likely. “It’s a touch and go situation. Sometimes things work, sometimes they don’t.” He also confirmed that a foreign protection auditor
has been in the country for several weeks assessing equipment challenges. In a statement, Mr Mitchell suggested the issues were inevitable because staff were stressed and stretched to the limit so much so that they were being allowed to sleep on the job. “The minister responsible for BPL has to tell us now what is going on with BPL,” he said. “The public had earlier been assured of a sufficient supply of electricity to deal with the demands for power during the summer. Today BPL admitted in an announcement that its services in New Providence are to collapse for at least two hours. This is unacceptable. “BPL also has power generation problems in Exuma where the power failures are chronic and of long duration. It has ruined the summer for both residents and tourists alike. “To add to this tale of woes are reports that the BPL staff are so stressed and stretched to the limit that people are being allowed to sleep on the job in order to work the overtime which is required to keep the lights on. Fatigue ultimately causes accidents. This shortage is now confirmed with BPL announcing that since they laid off so many people there are 60 vacancies they have to fill. “This government is clueless and has no plan.” Mr Bannister denied the claims in a statement to The Tribune.
“The truth is a stranger to the PLP and its hopeless, clueless, reckless and hapless brigade of false and fake news purveyors,” he said. “It is untruthful for the PLP to claim that BPL issued an announcement that its services in New Providence are to collapse for at least two hours or at all,” he continued. “If the person who released the false statement on behalf of the PLP has any honour left, he will publicly withdraw it and apologise to the Bahamian people and to the employees of BPL. Knowing the PLP, however, there will be no such withdrawal or retraction. “The remainder of the release is just as false and unsupportable. “For the record, a fire in a rented generator in North Andros this morning (Thursday) caused intermittent outages in North Andros. In order to correct the problem and to ensure the safety of its employees, there may be short power cuts in North Andros. This is a safety measure. “The PLP’s insistence on defaming dedicated BPL staff is unpardonable. They know better. It is to be remembered that the PLP had no confidence in letting Bahamians operate BPL. The woes of their mismanagement of our power utility by non-Bahamians are well known to their eternal shame. Their intent is to spread untruths and to create confusion. By their untruths they will be known,” Mr Bannister said.
‘WHAT A WASTE OF MONEY’ from page one
On Wednesday, Attorney General Carl Bethel said the government has hired a team headed by Harvey Tynes, QC, to take on Fred Smith, QC, and his team in the matter. Rights Bahamas, of which Mr Smith is former president, said of the move yesterday: “It is a crying shame that the Free National Movement government would seek to waste hundreds of thousands of public dollars, just to save face over its reckless and ill-conceived plan to exterminate certain irregular communities in the Bahamas.
“The move to hire outside attorneys is a slap in the face to the dozens of hard-working lawyers at the Attorney General’s Office, whose salaries are also paid by the public; as well as an insult to taxpayers, who are now essentially double-paying for the government’s legal bills. It is also a glaring admission that the government lacks confidence in its own position in the case. If the judicial review challenge before Justice Cheryl Grant-Bethel is so lacking in merit, as the government has suggested, then why resort to such drastic measures in fighting it?” Mr Bethel has said the government views the
challenge to its shanty town actions “with the utmost seriousness” and wants to meet the challenge vigorously, hence its “team of expert attorneys who are particularly experienced in the judicial review matters and constitutional matters before our courts.” In its statement, Rights Bahamas said yesterday: “Last month, Attorney General Carl Bethel said he doubts that any legal challenge to the government’s arbitrary eviction and demolition policy could be successful. Clearly now he knows better. Clearly now the FNM understands that the case brought by ROHL (Respect Our Homes Ltd) is very strong
and that people’s fundamental rights are indeed being violated under the eradication policy. “Sadly, rather than retract the policy and agree to act in accordance with the rule of law, their response has been to put on a public relations song and dance, hiring expensive private lawyers for the duration of what is likely to be a lengthy legal contest, all in an effort to convince Bahamians who are angry at their handling of this, that the government is taking the matter seriously. An administration that claims to be the
guardian of fiscal responsibility, a government so broke that it can no longer provide school uniforms to less fortunate children, has suddenly found the money to fund a team of top attorneys, meanwhile continuing to pay the entire Office of the Attorney General, essentially to sit on their hands and watch?” As reported previously, the Department of Social Services’ uniform budget has been decreased from $360,000 last year to $270,000 this year. “What a mess. Perhaps it would have been better
not to stoke the fires of xenophobia and ethnic discrimination in the first place. Thankfully, regardless of who argues either side of the case, thanks to ROHL’s clients the legality of the government’s actions and stated intentions will now be put on trial and pronounced upon once and for all by a court of law. Rights Bahamas welcomes this and we are confident that, as usual, the judiciary will recognise and act to defend the fundamental rights of every individual who resides in this jurisdiction,” the statement noted.
Funeral Service Funeral Service For CAROLE WATSON, 75 of Faith Avenue North and formerly of Canada, will be held on Tuesday, August 14th, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. at St. Francis Xavier Cathedral, West Hill Street. Officiating will be Fr. Glen Nixon, assisted by other ministers of the Clergy. Pre-Cremation. Precious Memories will forever linger in the heart of her Husband: Barrington (Barry) Watson; 1 Brother: Mr Lester Halman of Fergus Ontario, Canada; 3 Brothersin-law: DeVaughan, Kevin and Donovan Williams; 2 Sisters-in-law: Deborah Williams and Arelen Halman; Step- Children: Barry and Debbie Williams; Nieces and Nephews: Stacey Smith, Shanai Tanai McKenzie, Kevin (Joe), Raine Shekev and Dana Marie Williams, Shaqura and Kenson Glinton, Tim, Darren, Kim and Nora Halman of ( Canada); Numerous ;Grand-Nephew and Grand Nieces, other relatives and friends including: Ms Sue Johnson, Mr and Mrs Charlie Simms, Ms Monica Gomez and Family, Ms V Addlerly, Dr. James Johnson, Mr. Charles Russell, Ms Sonia Hamilton, Ms Pat Hart (Pat’s Cafertia), Ms Sandra Meadows, Ms Diana and Sue of (Canada) St. Francis Xavier Cathedral Church Family, Z.N.S. Television Traffic Department, Gems Radio Traffic Department, Ms Brenda Russell, Ms Sundae Cooper and many other relatives and friends too numerous to mention.
Leonard (Lenny) Lester Albury III, 50 a resident of Seaview Drive, Nassau, The Bahamas, who passed away 1st August, 2018, will be held at Trinity Methodist Church, Trinity Place and Frederick Street, Nassau, on Saturday, 11th August, 2018 at 4:00 p.m. Rev. Bill Higgs will officiate and interment will be in Ebenezer Methodist Cemetery, East Shirley Street, Nassau, The Bahamas. He is survived by his Mother and Father, Patricia and Captain Lester Albury; two sisters, Patrice Lleida and Amanda Albury; one brother-in-law, Stephen Lleida; two nieces, Ashlyn and Amber Lleida and numerous cousins & friends. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Cancer Society of The Bahamas, P.O. Box S.S. 6539 Nassau or The Heart Association, P.O. Box N.8189, Nassau in Memory of Mr. Leonard (Lenny) Lester Albury lll. Please wear cheerful colours. Arrangements by Kemp’s Funeral Home Limited.
PAGE 8, Friday, August 10, 2018
Left in the dark - again
THE BAHAMAS Power and Light head office.
Photo: Terrel W Carey/Tribune Staff
S much as I would like to address several issues affecting Bahamians this week, I’m forced to go with one, BPL, again!! And obviously I must do it rather quickly as there’s no telling when they will strike again. Too late, after 3 hours out, 45 minutes back on, you guessed it... off again.
FROM THE BREAK
The more I look at the whole BPL fiasco, from its inception to present.
I can only draw one conclusion; we the Bahamian people deserve better when it comes to our power provider. Unless their job was really to be a $25m “union breaking” mechanism, BPL has been an epic failure in many regards. In all honesty, BPL makes me long for the old BEC, and as comical and frightening as that sounds, it’s true. At least we could gauge how long we would be off, (depending on who Tall Pines MP and former BEC chairman Leslie Miller was “vibing” with). We knew when the “cutters” from BEC would be out in force - radio adds flooded the airwaves. We also knew ain’t nothing was happening, if we didn’t “hurry put something on the bill”. And yes, the bills were “guesstimated”.
VESP LEAVING ME VEX
The VSEP exercise opened to all employees of BPL. Of BLP’s 1,038 employees, 314 applications were received. The VSEP exercise will result in more than $70m being paid out over time.
The utility’s chairman Darnell Osborne had previously stated the VSEP exercise would save BPL between $1-$2m per month, or $12-$24m per year. So, let me get this right, you have key staff leave via VSEP, productivity is suffering, (it’s obvious with the continued intermittent power outages and lack of consistent power provision). It’s costing us taxpayers $70m over two years, to streamline BPL, so how are we saving $24m a year again?
WHAT ARE WE REALLY PAYING FOR?
Apart from random “black outs” or load shedding, whatever you want to call it, what are we Bahamians paying for, when it comes to power provision in The Bahamas? I know what we are paying for, our lack of concern and protest initially when our “gubbament” flung this whole BPL nightmare on us.
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So as we continue to hold “current on” vigils and lose groceries due to random power cuts caused by “faulty” cables and a nonchalant power provider, we must take the time while we are sitting in the darkness and heat, melting like the wicked witch from the Wizard of Oz in solace, to remember that we the voting populous are the power providers for governance in this country, and because of “boo boo” decisions by past and present administrations, in granting lucrative contracts to foreign entities, come election time we may have to play a BPL and pull the plug on their time in office at the polls.
LET THERE BE LIGHT
Well I better run now, BPL has humanely restored power, for how long remains to be seen. Hopefully long enough for me to grab a quick, cold shower, and remove the perspiration from some of the new cracks and crevasses on my body, that I just discovered as I sat sweltering courtesy of BPL, which I’m convinced stands for Baking People Live
BPL YOU HAD ONE JOB
If you needed help BPL just ask for it, God knows we the consumers need it, in regards to your service. It’s shouldn’t be that hard, after all like George Carlin said - “Electricity is really just organised lighting.”
Friday, August 10, 2018, PAGE 9
Lighthouse Point must be saved as national park from page one In yesterday’s statement, the BNT said it “wishes to go on record” to confirm it remains opposed to unsustainable development at Lighthouse Point. “It is our opinion that a cruise development would not be sustainable and the environmental impact would be significant,” the statement continues. “BNT has met with and written to the prime minister to state our position supporting the protection of Lighthouse Point.” The BNT noted in April 2013, the organisation approved a resolution to support the efforts of the Eleuthera Land Conservancy and One Eleuthera Foundation to protect Lighthouse Point. According to the statement, the BNT is continuing to work with “key conservation and
community partners to secure Lighthouse Point as a national park, and a model for sustainable development.” The organisation has also provided Prime Minister Dr Hubert Minnis with a proposal for acquisition of the site, “along with a plan to create more full-time jobs, and generate more sustained economic impact for South Eleuthera.” This model will also ensure “permanent and unfettered public access” to the Lighthouse Beach. The BNT added it “feels strongly” that Lighthouse Point should not be “lost” to cruise port development. “These types of cruise port, private island and other developments have proven to deliver few jobs, and have modest economic impact for the country, while at the same time placing very significant pressures on the environment,” the statement continues.
LIGHTHOUSE POINT “Perhaps most importantly, it is typical for some or all of such sites to be restricted to public access. “BNT’s position is clear, Lighthouse Point should not receive approvals for large scale development, but should be preserved as a model for sustainable development in The Bahamas.” In recent months, Disney Cruise Lines has been at the centre of speculation, with several sources on Eleuthera naming the company as the group behind
the potential acquisition and development of the Lighthouse Point site. On May 7, Disney Cruise Lines spokeswoman Kim Prunty responded to this concern in a statement. Mrs Prunty said while the cruise line didn’t have “anything to share about a specific location” at the time, any project pursued by the company in the future would involve a “partnership with the community” and build on its commitment to “sustainability, protecting the
environment, creating jobs and economic opportunity, and celebrating the culture and stories of the area.” Meanwhile residents in Eleuthera and have formed the One Eleuthera digital campaign - Save Lighthouse Point. The campaign has launched a website detailing the history and importance of the area, while imploring Bahamians to sign a petition to stop the sale and development of the property. “Lighthouse Point is
one of the most beautiful and unspoiled natural places in our country,” the BNT statement reads. “The area contains diverse and important terrestrial and marine ecologies including over 200 bird species and 4 endemic plant species. “The interior wetland known as Big Pond is a rare hyper – saline water habitat of high scientific value.” A petition on change.org to save Lighthouse Point had more than 16,000 signatures up to press time.
PAGE 10, Friday, August 10, 2018
Rotaract Club of East Nassau
THE MURAL being refreshed by the Rotaract Club of East Nassau.
Rotaract Club of East Nassau. - On Saturday, July 28, the Rotaract Club of East Nassau hosted an HIV/AIDS mural painting open to both members and non-members. This initiative served as a reminder to persons of all ages that they should “Get Tested Bey!” It is the hope of the club that this refreshed mural serves as a reminder to carry out safe sex, better one’s responsibility and cement our duty to know our status. With this, we can
take the necessary precautions if faced with such a diagnosis.
Pinnacle Seekers Toastmasters Pinnacle Seekers Toastmasters Club 1513325. - Toastmaster Travis Robinson, pictured right, was just recently elected as Secretary of Pinnacle Seekers Toastmasters Club 1513325. Toastmaster Robinson was inducted into the club two weeks ago and is already showing his leadership abilities. Pinnacle Seekers
meets every Wednesday at 6:30 pm at The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce across the street from Doctor’s Hospital. firstname.lastname@example.org
SUN Oil marketing manager Rufus Johnson II observes the Royal Bahamas Police Force annual summer camp.
SUN OIL SUPPORT FOR POLICE SUMMER CAMPS SUN Oil Limited has partnered with the Royal Bahamas Police Force (RBPF) Summer Camp Programs once more in its continued commitment to “fueling growth” and assisting communities in the development of positive members of society and future leaders. Rufus Johnson II, Sun
Oil marketing manager, said: “We have sponsored the police camps for many years, and are proud of the outstanding job and sacrifice these officers make in taking this proactive step in the development of our youth.” Over the past 25 years, more than 160,000 students have participated in the
RBPF summer camps. The initiative is a part of the force’s dedication to youth enrichment with the goal of producing upstanding members of society. In addition to New Providence, the camps also take place on the islands of: Exuma, Andros, Berry Islands, Abaco and Grand Bahama.
Friday, August 10, 2018, PAGE 11
FULL SPEED FOR SUMMER
NOTHING quite compares with that adrenaline rush sweeping over you as you sit in an open-air car raring to go – pitting your wits, reflexes and motor skills against an unrelenting course. That’s exactly the experience participants attending EduKarting’s summer camp this week received. The camp provides an extraordinary atmosphere for children to learn the principles of the governing body of motor sport, the FIA – safety, responsibility and teamwork. This is not your runof-the-mill summer programme. “Kids love it because it combines all the elements of their favourite video games. It is competitive, fast-paced and exciting. A valuable experience, they’re learning the basics of driving a car,” said EduKarting Bahamas founder and coordinator David McLaughlin. “Parents love it because it’s a confidence booster for children. They are learning essential skills for work and life, such as self-discipline, critical and creative thinking and problem solving.” Over the course of two weeks, children ranging in ages from nine to 17 will learn the nuts and bolts of high performance racing reminiscent of Formula One or NASCAR. Not only will they pull apart and reassemble their kart, but also engage in behind the scenes work associated with motor sport racing – finding funding for uniforms, helmets, tyres and parts by creating and presenting a business plan to would-be investors. Each weeklong session of the two-week summer camp caters to 30 participants. It runs from 9.30am to 3.30pm at Bahamas Technical & Vocational Institute. BTVI is on Old Trail Road and potential entrants can check on the EduKarting Bahamas Facebook page to see if there are any places for week two. The camp receives supports from the FIA Foundation and Bahamian companies allowing organisers to keep fees low, at $25 per camper per week, including lunch.
Other sponsors include JS Johnson, Rotary Club of East Nassau, Aliv, Battery & Tyre Specialists Ltd, Valvoline, Jumex, Aquapure, Pizza Hut, Bahamas Waste, Diane Phillips & Associates and Oasis Furniture. For the past five years, the programme has been operational in government schools promoting education through sport. FIA, Federation Internationale de L’Automobile, which is the world governing body of motor sport, is also the leader in road safety, establishing standards and initiatives around the globe. The Bahamas Motor Sports Association is affiliated directly with FIA, which represents 144 countries. FIA’s foundation provides partial funding for EduKarting initiatives, supporting McLaughlin, the Bahamas Motor Sports Association’s president and Susan Schauff, the organisation’s vice president. They have been assisting the Ministry of Transport this year in its fight to reduce the increasing dangers on roads. “However this funding is, by statute, only provided to match local funds from government or commercial entities, driving home the need for local partnerships,” a press release noted. The camp wraps up on Friday, August 17.
Happy Sweet 16th Birthday Princess Shadae
We love you!!!!
THE EDUKARTING summer camp. Photos: Shawn Hanna/Tribune Staff
PAGE 12, Friday, August 10, 2018
PUERTO RICO HURRICANE KILLED 1,400
MEET THE NEWEST US CITIZENS: MELANIA TRUMP’S PARENTS NEW YORK Associated Press
SAN JUAN, Puerto Rico Associated Press PUERTO Rico is estimating in a report to Congress that Hurricane Maria killed more than 1,400 people, though an island official said yesterday that the confirmed toll remains frozen at 64 pending a scientific review. The government, relying on updated statistics it first reported in June, said in a report to Congress detailing a $139bn reconstruction plan that there were 1,427 more deaths from September to December 2017 than the average over the previous four years. The territory’s government said the additional deaths resulted from the effects of a storm that led to a “cascading failures” in infrastructure across the island of 3.3 million people. The administration of Gov Ricardo Rossello stopped updating its official death toll months ago and ordered an investigation amid reports that the number was substantially undercounted. Public Safety Department Secretary Hector Pesquera said the figure of more than 1,400, “is simple math” based on the number of excess deaths. “This is not the official number of deaths attributable to Hurricane Maria,” he said.
SANCTIONS ON RUSSIA AFTER POISONING WASHINGTON Associated Press NEW sanctions against Russia will be imposed later this month for illegally using a chemical weapon in an attempted assassination of a former spy and his daughter in Britain earlier this year, the United States said. The penalties come despite President Donald Trump’s efforts to improve relations with Russia and its leader, Vladimir Putin, and his harsh criticism of the investigation into Russian interference in the 2016 election. Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the US move runs contrary to a “constructive” atmosphere at the Trump-Putin summit last month, and he strongly denied any Russian role in the poisoning in Britain.
VIKTOR, left, and Amalija Knavs listen as their attorney Michael Wildes, right, makes a statement in New York yesterday. Photo: Seth Wenig/AP
FIRST lady Melania Trump’s parents were sworn in as US citizens on Thursday, completing a legal path to citizenship that their son-in-law has suggested eliminating. Viktor and Amalija Knavs, both in their 70s, took the citizenship oath at a private ceremony in New York City. The Slovenian immigrants, a former car dealer and textile factory worker, had been living in the US as permanent residents. The Knavses slipped in and out of a side entrance at a Manhattan federal
building flanked by Department of Homeland Security police. The couple said little, other than Viktor telling a reporter “thank you” when asked how they felt about becoming Americans. Lawyer Michael Wildes said the Knavses applied for citizenship on their own and didn’t get any special treatment. He confirmed that Melania Trump sponsored their green cards. Her husband, President Donald Trump, has proposed ending most family-based immigration, which he refers to as “chain migration”. Viktor Knavs is 74, two years older than his son-inlaw. Amalija is 73.
Quake victims wait for help KAYANGAN, Indonesia Associated Press FALLING rubble instantly paralysed Mary Andoni from the waist down when Indonesia was shaken by one of its deadliest earthquakes in years. But there was nobody in her destroyed village to get her the help she needed. There were too many other injured and dead. “It was overwhelming,” Andoni’s 35-year-old brother-in-law, Ilham, said of the chaotic aftermath of Sunday’s magnitude 7.0 earthquake on the island of Lombok. “There was no way to get her out.” Yesterday, paramedics finally evacuated Andoni to a hospital in the city of Mataram. But her experience underscores the challenges facing this devastated region: Four days after the earthquake killed hundreds of people and displaced 270,000 more, injured survivors in remote areas cut off by landslides and broken bridges are still emerging from the ruined countryside, struggling to reach the
doctors they desperately need. And the crisis hasn’t ended. Lombok has been hit by over 300 aftershocks, including a 5.9 magnitude tremor yesterday that brought down more buildings and injured 24 more people, authorities said. In northern Lombok, some people leaped from their vehicles on a traffic-jammed road when the aftershock hit, while an elderly woman standing in the back of a pickup truck wailed “God is Great”. At a Mataram hospital, about a dozen people were being treated while fearful staff moved patients outside. At a first aid station in Kayangan that was set up under a sprawling tent because of the threat of more quakes, Dr. Mohammad Akbar said medical staff were combing the region with an ambulance to locate injured people. By 3pm, he said, they had found and treated 40 people with broken bones, cuts and bruises. Many were also dehydrated.
AN INDONESIAN girl who was injured in Sunday’s earthquake reacts as she is being examined by a paramedic at a makeshift hospital in Kayangan, North Lombok, Indonesia, yesterday. Photo: Fauzy Chaniago/AP “They’re all stuck in iso- too late. One three-year-old by the quake, Akbar’s aid lated areas with little or girl, he said, had been found station is referring patients no transport,” Akbar said. with a wounded foot that to an Indonesian naval ship “They’re too weak to get had turned pale blue after now docked at an empty here on their own, so we being untended for three port on the coast. days. Doctors at another In Kopang Daya, injured need to go to them.” Akbar said para- hospital on Lombok had to villagers also got their first proper treatment yesterday medics were treating amputate it. Because the nearest hos- after medics arrived with infections caused by traumatic wounds, and they pital — an hour’s drive away a portable X-ray machine were reaching some victims in Tanjung — was wrecked and other supplies.
CHILDREN AMONG 50 DEAD AS SAUDI AIRSTRIKE HITS YEMEN SANAA, Yemen Associated Press
AN airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition fighting Shiite rebels hit a bus driving in a busy market in northern Yemen yesterday, killing least 50 people including children and wounding 77, Yemen’s rebelrun Al Masirah TV said citing rebel Health Ministry figures. The Saudi-led coalition, meanwhile, said it targeted the rebels, known as Houthis, who had fired
a missile at the kingdom’s south on Wednesday, killing one person who was a Yemeni resident in the area. Al Masirah TV aired images of wounded children, their clothes and schoolbags covered with blood as they lay on hospital stretchers. The International Committee of the Red Cross said on Twitter that its team at an ICRC supported hospital in Saada received the bodies of 29 children, all under 15 years old. It also received 48 wounded people, including 30 children, it said.
The attack took place in the Dahyan market in Saada province, a Houthi stronghold. The province lies along the border with Saudi Arabia. The bus was ferrying local civilians, including many children, according to Yemeni tribal leaders who spoke on condition of anonymity for fear of reprisals. There was no breakdown in the casualties and it was not immediately clear how many of the victims were on the bus itself and how many were pedestrians in the
immediate area around it. It was also unclear if there were other airstrikes in the area. Col Turki al-Malki, a spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition, said the attack in Saada targeted the rebels who had fired a missile at the kingdom’s south, killing one person and wounding 11 others. The coalition said Wednesday’s projectile, fired toward the southwestern Saudi city of Jizan, was intercepted and destroyed but its fragments caused the casualties.
FOR PENCE, SPACE IS THE NEXT BATTLEFIELD WASHINGTON Associated Press POINTING to growing threats and competition from Russia and China, the White House yesterday announced plans to create the US Space Force as a sixth, separate military warfighting service by 2020. The proposal taps into the American public’s long fascination with space — but with a military focus. The plan faces daunting hurdles and requires congressional approval. Military leaders and experts have questioned the wisdom of launching an expensive, bureaucratic new service branch. Vice President Mike Pence announced the new force during a Pentagon speech, fleshing out an idea that President Donald Trump has extolled in recent months. Pence described space as a domain that was once peaceful and uncontested but has now become crowded and adversarial. “Now the time has come to write the next great chapter in the history of our armed forces, to prepare for the next battlefield where America’s best and bravest will be called to deter and defeat a new generation of threats to our people, to our nation,” Pence said. Trump marked Pence’s announcement with a tweet: “Space Force all the way!”
Citing Russia and China, Pence said that for years US adversaries have “pursued weapons to jam, blind and disable our navigation and communication satellites via electronic attacks from the ground”. “As their actions make clear, our adversaries have transformed space into a warfighting domain already, and the United States will not shrink from this challenge,” he said. In June, the president directed the Pentagon to create a “separate but equal” space force, a complicated and expensive move that could take years to gain Congress’ approval and become operational. Yesterday, Pence said the administration will work with Congress on the plan and will outline a budget next year. The last time the US created a new uniformed military service was in 1947, when the Air Force was launched after World War II. It joined the Army, Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis has endorsed steps to reorganise the military’s space-warfighting forces and create a new command, but he previously opposed launching an expensive new service. A new branch of the military would require layers of bureaucracy, military and civilian leaders, uniforms, equipment and an expansive support structure.