THIS WEEK”S SUMMARY
GUILTY VERDICT FOR BERBICK NEPHEW IN MURDER TRIAL—01/12/08
Harold Berbick, the nephew of Trevor Berbick, former heavyweight champion, received a sentence of life in prison for his uncle’s murder. The jury in the case also found Harold Berbick’s accomplice, Kenton Gordon, to be guilty of manslaughter in the death of the heavyweight fighter. Police say the two men beat Trevor Berbick to death, then left his body in a church courtyard.
DISPUTE OVER TELEVISION RIGHTS FOR HOME WORLD CUP GAMES IN 2008—01/13/08
Captain Horace Burrell, president of the Jamaica Football Federation, reports that he is uncertain about the issue, which involves free-to-air television station TVJ and SportsMax, the cable station. Burrell expects the conflict to eventually end up in the courts. SportsMax purchased the television rights to local friendly games from the Crenston Boxhill-led administration. The contract contained a rider that allowed the cable station to have first right of refusal for World Cup qualifying games played at home, however. TVJ has a contract with the JFF, says Burrell, which was also made with the past administration.
JAMAICAN COAST GUARD RECEIVES PATROL BOATS FROM U.S.—01/14/08
The Jamaica Defense Force (JDF) Coast Guard has received two 43-foot Nortech interceptor patrol boats, valued at more than US$500,000. The board will improve the Guard’s ability to intercept the fast boats typically used by drug and gun smugglers. The boats were donated under the United States Marine Security Assistance Program known as Enduring Friendship.
TEENS CALL FOR END TO VANDALISM AT TRANSPORTATION CENTER—01/15/08
Now that a new center has been constructed to relieve past problems with public transportation experienced by users of the public system, TEENage hopes to discourage vandals from harming the new terminal. The group also expects the transportation services to match the modern architecture of the new building, so that users will feel like they are respected.
JAMAICAN APPOINTED TO WTO—01/16/08
The World Trade Organization (WTO) has again recognized Jamaica by appointing Andrea Marie Brown, Executive Director of the Anti-Dumping and Subsidies Commission to the WTO’s Dispute Settlement Understanding panel. Brown joined the Commission in 2002 and will act as a member of the panel, which examines the continued existence and application of Zeroing Methodology (DS350) involving the U.S.
LEGLESS JAMAICAN MAN PLEADS GUILTY TO COCAINE SMUGGLING—01/16/08
Dean Stewart, 22, says that he didn’t know how much or the type of drug he was carrying stuffed into his hollowed-out prosthetic limbs. Stewart admitted knowing that he was given drugs to carry, but said he did not touch them. Stewart boarded an Air Jamaica flight to New York when carrying the cocaine. U.S. marshals had to bring Stewart to court in a wheelchair, since federal agents had seized his prosthetics as evidence in the case. The limbs were filled with 2.2 pounds of cocaine.
CHILDREN”S ADVOCATE PROMOTES CHURCH ATTENDANCE—01/17/08
Mary Clarke, Children’s Advocate, says Jamaican parents must get their children involved with church-related activities like Sunday school as part of the effort to reduce the country’s rising crime rate and incidence of juvenile delinquency. Clarke says Jamaican youth must be “revolutionized” to fight the “deteriorating moral values” that affect the nation.
MAN CHARGED FOR INDECENT ASSAULT ON 7-YEAR-OLD DAUGHTER—01/18/08
A Jamaican man, aged 33, living in the British Virgin Islands, was arrested and charged with indecent assault on his own daughter, aged 7. The Crown Prosecutor Inspector Jefferson Knight told the court that teachers at the child’s school reported the crime to the Social Development Department. Detectives from the Family and Juvenile Department investigated the case and found that the offense had been committed at the home of the accused.
JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
MLK DAY HONORED WITH JAMAICAN CELEBRATION—01/13/08
Cultural activist Don Rico, whose birthday is the same as that of Martin Luther King Jr., plans to celebrate the event that honors Jamaica’s national hero, Marcus Garvey. Martin Luther King Jr. had stated during a visit to Jamaica that Garvey was the first man to provide blacks “with a sense of dignity.” King laid a wreath at the grave of Garvey in National Heroes Park during his visit. To reflect this spirit of internationalism, Rico will host a birthday event in Miami, Florida, to raise awareness and funds to support the Marcus Garvey celebration.
CUBA WANTS HIGHER SCHOLARSHIP QUOTA OF JAMAICANS—01/14/08
In an effort to create stronger ties between Caribbean territories in the areas of health and education, Gisela Garcia Rivera, Cuba’s Ambassador to Jamaica, has said the embassy hopes to send more students from Jamaica to Cuba to study medicine and other areas of scholarship. Ambassador Garcia noted that about 27,500 students from 120 nations study in Cuba. Of those, over 400 come from Jamaica.
JAMAICAN CARPENTERS TO HOLD JOBS IN CANADA—01/15/08
Many Jamaican carpenters are expected to work in Canada by March 1, 2008. The carpenters were chosen by Avenue Building Corporation. The company is in Jamaica searching for workers to add to the Canadian team. According to Antonio Patullo, chief executive officer, the carpenters will be put on several projects throughout Canada. The selected workers had to be trained as carpenters and they had to show their ability to learn Canada’s building system.
LIFE SENTENCE FOR JAMAICAN IN TEEN MURDER CASE—01/16/08
Patrick McCarthy, 27, faces life in prison in Pennsylvania for the murder of Anna Nicole Fowler, 19. McCarthy was convicted of stabbing the girl in a motel room in 2004.
FOOTBALL SCHOOL OF REAL MADRID TO RAISE EDUCATION LEVELS—01/12/08
The Real Madrid Social Integration School, which is sponsored by the largest football club in the world, plans to use training in football to increase educational levels and improve social values for the Jamaican children who will participate in the program. The local training school will help Jamaican children who come from deprived backgrounds, says manager Aaron Lawrence, former national team goalkeeper. The children must maintain a 50-percent grade average in the traditional school system to qualify for the football program.
LINDSAY WILSON COLLEGE WANTS FEMALE FOOTBALLERS—01/13/08
American-based Lindsay Wilson College and the Jamaica Football Federation (JFF) have partnered over the past five years and encouraged several female Jamaican footballers to study and play in the United States. The opportunity has helped many Jamaican women go on to better their lives. Drew Burwash, the American chiefly responsible for program, is the coach of the Lindsay Wilson College team. He recently visited the island to recruit more local female footballers.
EASY VICTORY FOR JAMAICA AT CARIB BEER SERIES—01/14/08
Jamaica moved into the top spot at the Carib Beer Series by obtaining a ten-wicket lead and beating the Combined Campuses and Colleges (CCC). Jamaican had no problem reaching their target without losing a week. Slow bowlers Nikita Miller, Odean Brown, and Captain Tamar Lambert established the pattern for the home team by sharing all ten wickets in the CCC’s second innings.
ASAFA POWELL, VERONICA CAMPBELL, MAURICE SMITH NOMINATED—01/17/08
Nominations for the 2007 RJR Group Sports Foundation Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year list 100-meter champion Veronica Campbell, world 100-meter record holder, Asafa Powell, and World Championships silver medalist Maurice Smith. Other male athletes listed include Danny McFarlane, Christopher Gayle, Darren Powell, Usain Bolt, and Dorian Scott. Female candidates also include Karen Anderson, SherriAnn Brooks, Delloreen Ennis-London, Nickeisha Wilson, Tashana Vincent, and Novelene Williams. The winners will be announced on January 29, 2008.
Going Around Detours
This past November I bought myself a GPS navigation system. A really nice gadget with a 4.3″ display, it plays MP3s and picture slideshows. I can connect my phone via the Bluetooth technology and use it hands-free, and with a rather pleasant female voice providing turn-by-turn directions to and from places I do not know, I was eager to put it to the test.
The opportunity came in a drive from Toronto, Ontario to Livonia, Michigan. Personally, driving in Detroit is not my favorite thing to do (those “Michigan Lefts”!), but with the GPS leading the way, I didn’t have any concerns; I expected it to work as advertised. Once I got across the Ambassador Bridge at the Detroit/Windsor border, sure enough “Suzy” gave me the next set of directions. What “she” didn’t know was that that portion of the hiway was closed off and detour signs were posted for the alternate route. I followed the signs, and watched in amusement as the system reconfigured the directions to my destination with every turn. For as long as I was following the detour signs, I had to ignore “Suzy’s” instructions. This continued until the detour ended, and once it did, now I had to rely on “Suzy” to take me the rest of the way. I have to admit that “she” was very impressive; clear instructions given well ahead of time, and at the right number, on the right street, the announcement, “You have reached your destination.” How cool is that? My path was charted from start to finish, and despite all the detours, it still got me to where I needed to get to.
I learned something very important that day. God, in His Sovereignty, has charted the course of our lives from start to finish. For one reason or another, whether God decreed or God permitted, along this course we often run into detours – things doesn’t go as expected, we get off track. Often times the spirit within us, amidst all our worries and concerns, tries to “reconfigure” our paths around the detours, yet like those detour signs, the Word of God points the way to get us back on track. As good as the GPS was, as long as the detour signs continued, I could not rely on it. Unfortunately, we sometimes fall in love with following our own inclinations despite the warning signs posted everywhere. The believer has to rely on the Holy Spirit during those times we have detoured, knowing fully well that at every step, He is working towards getting us back on track.
In Jeremiah 29:11, we read God saying “I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out” (Message Translation). The will of God may see us experiencing detours along the way. Relationships will not work out, jobs may be lost, children may rebel, and where success was expected, we experience nothing but failure. Amidst all of that, there’s no need to panic, no need to fear. Our Heavenly Father can be trusted. He charted the course. He knows what He’s doing. He has it all planned out.
The weekly news is compilation of new articles from top Caribbean and Jamaican news sources.