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JAMAICA NEWSWEEKLY For the week ending June 17th, 2005

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THIS WEEKS NEWS SUMMARY
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SERVICE RETURNED TO STANDPIPES – 6/11/05
Service to more than 200 standpipes across the island is to be returned following last week’s suspension of what is considered a vital service to many of Jamaica’s most vulnerable. The National Water Committee (NWC) began reconnecting the standpipes after reaching an agreement with the Local Government Ministry over a disputed $90 million in fees reportedly to be owed by Parish Councils. The Local Government Ministry is to make an initial payment of $35 million next week.

PRIME MINISTER MAKES CASE TO BLAIR – 6/11/05
Prime Minister P.J. Patterson, praising the successes of Operation Kingfish and underscoring the importance of advancing the war on drugs, sought additional funds from the U.K. Patterson made his case while meeting with British Prime Minister Tony Blair at 10 Downing Street in London on Friday. Prime Minister Patterson pointed to a reduction in the transshipment of cocaine through Jamaica and stated the need for improvements in forensics, the training of police officers and in combating extortion. Mr. Blair commented on the significant impact of Jamaican crime on Jamaican communities in the U.K.

NWU TO PROTEST SLASHES IN SUGAR PRICES – 6/12/05
The National Worker’s Union (NWU) is to protest on Thursday the European Commission’s 39 percent cut in prices paid to Jamaican and other African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) exporters of sugar. NWU island supervisor, Vincent Morrison, stated that the Jamaican sugar industry need a minimum of eight years to prepare for such a drastic cut in prices, which are to take effect over two years from 2008 to 2009. Prime Minister P.J. Patterson voiced his concerns regarding the price reductions in a letter to British Prime Minister Tony Blair prior to meeting with him on Friday.

PATTERSON SEEKS TO REMEDY GOVERNMENT CORRUPTION – 6/13/05
Prime Minister P.J. Patterson announced last Wednesday that amendments to the Public Bodies Act and the Corruption Prevention Act increasing penalties for corruption in the public sector are to be introduced to Parliament. Mr. Patterson seeks to give the Corruption Prevention Commission authority to oust government officials from service as part of the new legislation while appointing an ethics officer to advise members of the public sector.

TREMORS COLLAPSE CLARENDON HOME – 6/14/05
Clarendon, Manchester and St. Andrew reported damage to residences, a retaining wall and a church after a moderate earthquake measuring 5.1 on the Richter Scale produced tremors that originated in northern Clarendon at 10:58 p.m. Sunday night. Believed to be the most forceful earthquake recorded in 10 years, Dr. Margaret Wiggins-Grandison of the Earthquake Unit at the University of West Indies attributed the late night tremors (which included 13 aftershocks) to the Rio Minho-Crawle River fault. The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM) stated that the earthquake demolished a home in Clarendon.

POWELL FASTEST MAN ALIVE -6/15/05
Asafa Powell’s success at the Grand Prix meet at the Olympic Stadium in Athens on Tuesday may have been fleeting at just .01 seconds, but the 22-year-old’s world record time of 9.77 seconds in the 100-meter event has earned the top-ranked Jamaican sprinter a distinction that is to endure ad infinitum. Powell shaved .01 seconds off the three-year-old world record held by U.S. sprinter Tim Montgomery, a record held in contention owing to a doping scandal that could result in Montgomery’s suspension for life. The world record event took place on the same track where the young Jamaican finished fifth in last year’s Olympic final. Powell prefers to think of it as the track where Maurice Greene sprinted to a world record time of 9.79 seconds in 1979 — and the venue of his own fleeting victory of .01 seconds. Powell’s triumph comes early in the season, leaving many to wonder what he has yet to achieve for the sport.

POWELL RECEIVES HEROE’S WELCOME – 6/16/05
Asafa Powell returned home to Jamaica one day after sprinting to a new world record of 9.79 seconds in the 100 meter event at the Grand Prix in Athens to celebrate the triumph with family, track club teammates, members of Parliament and fellow Olympians. Powell was greeted on Wednesday by his mother, the Reverend Cislin Powell, at the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston — and by crowds of Jamaicans who were both overjoyed and inspired by the 22-year-old’s crowning achievement

SPANISH TOWN MAYOR RESIGNS AFTER WIFE DROPS CHARGES – 6/17/05
Dr. Raymoth Notice, Mayor of Spanish Town, resigned from office Friday, one day after his appearance at the Bog Walk Resident Magistrate’s Court on assault charges brought in April against the mayor for physically abusing his wife Verna Notice. Charges were dropped after Mrs. Notice chose to pursue counseling rather than criminal prosecution. Dr. Notice, who was accused last year of assaulting his former driver, announced his decision after meeting with top Jamaica Labour Party (JPL) leadership.

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SPORTS
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2007 CRICKET WORLD CUP SECURITY TOP CARICOM CONCERN – 6/13/05
Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Security Ministers discussed security measures for the 2007 Cricket World Cup security while meeting in Kingston last Thursday. The talks were an effort to raise awareness among Caribbean government officials for the need to plan security for the teams and scores of fans expected to attend. Security is to be a particular concern to the Jamaican island, host of the opening ceremony and several preliminary rounds.

SIX AWARDED U.S. BASKETBALL SCHOLARSHIPS – 6/13/05
The Jamaican Basketball Association (JBA) announced that six JA basketball players will start the fall term at U.S. universities on athletic scholarships, an achievement that is attributed to the courtship of American schools by the JBA. Richard Pollack, a spokesperson for the JBA, stated that the JBA seeks to create opportunity for players outside of the Jamaican National Basketball League (NBL).

WATERHOUSE AND TIVOLI LEAD SEMI-FINALS – 6/17/05
Tivoli Gardens and Waterhouse will enter the second leg of competition of the Wray and Nephew National Premier League semi-finals on Sunday out front of the competition. Waterhouse edged a 1-0 victory with an injury-time goal by Kevin Lamey over Portmore United in play on Thursday, while Tivoli’s Roland Dean, Christopher Dackson, and Kemar Mills each scored on Harbour View for a 3-1 win.

SEBA RETURNS TO WRAY AND NEPHEW – 6/16/05
Seba United will return to play in the Wray and Nephew National Premier League (NPL) after defeating Boys’ Town 1-0 in the Jamaica Football Federation NPL qualifying game at Jarrett Park on Wednesday. Los Perfectos are within four points of the former championship team, but Seba is the first Confederation team to have won their first four games, securing an early NPL qualification.

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CREDITS/SOURCES
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The weekly news is compilation of new articles from top Caribbean and Jamaican news sources.


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Staff Writer
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Written by Staff Writer