JAMAICA NEWSWEEKLY For the week ending December 13th, 2013

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THIS WEEK”S SUMMARY
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CHARITY COMMISSION TO BE ESTABLISHED—12/07/13
The Senate of Jamaica passed a Charities Act, which will result in the creation of a Charity Commission. The law was passed in the Senate without any amendments, having passed in the House earlier in the year. Under the law’s provisions, a registrar will be appointed to take responsibility for the regulation of charities and to establish a register of charities. The law applies to charities that operate or plan to operate in Jamaica.

AUTHORITIES MAKE LARGEST COCAINE BUST OF 2013—12/08/13
Authorities in Jamaica seized nearly 800 pounds of cocaine at the seaport in Kingston in what may be the biggest drug seizure of 2013. The cocaine was found by port security in a shipping container at Port Bustamante. The container came from Venezuela and was destined to be delivered to the Netherlands. The cocaine was found stuffed in bags. No arrests have been made in the incident.

JAMAICAN LEADERS MARK DEATH OF NELSON MANDELA—12/09/13
National leaders around the world have paid tribute to the former president of South Africa, Nelson Mandela, who died on December 5, 2013, at the age of 95. He was his country’s first black president and one of the greatest freedom fighters in history. Portia Simpson Miller, Jamaica’s Prime Minister, said he tanked among the greatest human beings in the history of humanity and conveyed the sympathy of the people of Jamaica to South Africa on the loss of that nation’s “father.”

PAULWELL SAYS JAMAICA COULD BENEFIT FROM MARIJUANA RESEARCH—12/10/13
Phillip Paulwell, Jamaica’s Minister of Science and Technology, believes there could be significant benefits to the country from research into the medical uses of marijuana. While the drug has been illegal in Jamaica for about 100 years, Paulwell noted the plant has many beneficial uses; he has told the scientific research council to lead efforts in finding its medicinal properties. The research could lead to jobs and revenue for the country, he said.

LOCAL MEMORIAL SERVICE HELD FOR NELSON MANDELA—12/11/13
The government of Jamaica and the South African High Commission plan to host a memorial service to celebrate the life of former South African president Nelson Mandela. The service will be open to the public and held at the University of the West Indies Chapel on December 12, 2013, replacing a service scheduled for December 11. Mandela died December 5, 2013, at the age of 95. There will be a five-day period of mourning to mark the passing of South Africa’s first black president and civil rights hero.

JAMAICAN COLLEGE DORM SET ON FIRE, THREE INJURED—12/12/13
A men’s dormitory at Jamaica’s College of Agriculture, Science and Education, was set on fire, and three students were injured in the incident. The fire occurred on the dorm’s ground floor. One of the students, Andre Angus, 18, was stabbed by a classmate in November 2013 and also suffered burns as a result of the fire. Simeon Johnson, a citizen of the United States, was treated for smoke inhalation, along with another student. The fire appears to have been deliberately set by students at the college.

BILL ON FOOD SECURITY COULD REQUIRE STATE ENTITIES TO BUY LOCALLY—12/13/13
Legislation in Jamaica’s Parliament may require entities in the public sector to purchase a minimum amount of their food from local producers. According to Roger Clarke, Agriculture Minister, the bill will be brought before lawmakers in 2014. The bill is meant to ensure that state institutions use a minimum level of locally produced food products.

JAMAICAN GOVERNMENT CLOSE TO OBTAINING CANCER TREATMENT TECH—12/13/13
The Jamaican government has funding in place to buy an advanced machine designed to provide cancer treatment. The machine, known as a linear accelerator, is believed to be the latest in cancer-treating apparatus, using external beam radiation to find and destroy cancer cells while sparing the tissues surrounding them. The two machines secured for Jamaica will cost US$10 million, more than half of which has been marked toward their purchase.

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JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
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CLARKE CALLS ON OBAMA TO STOP DEPORTING CARIBBEAN IMMIGRANTS—12/07/13
Yvette D. Clarke, Caribbean/American Congresswoman who represents the 9th Congressional District in Brooklyn, New York, has called on United States President Barack Obama to stop the deportations of Caribbean immigrants and others who have no legal status in the U.S. Clarke’s parents came from Jamaica as immigrants, and she noted that thousands in the community she represents face threats of deportation and the destruction of families as a result.

LYN PROMOTES JAMAICA IN UK—12/08/13
Wade Lyn, one of the most successful businessmen in Britain, has had a large role in bringing Caribbean foods into the mainstream as a pattie producer and promoter of Caribbean fruits, vegetables, and spices in the UK. The Jamaican government has how named Lyn as honorary consul to Birmingham in recognition of his promotional efforts. The Jamaican High Commissioner in London had a reception to recognize Lyn’s appointment as Commander of the British Empire as well.

UWI RECEPTION HOSTED BY JAMAICAN EMBASSY IN U.S.—12/09/13
In Washington, D.C., the Jamaican Embassy hosted a reception designed to promote the University of the West Indies (UWI) in an attempt to attract more students to the Jamaican university. Minna Israel, a special advisor to the school’s vice-chancellor on resource development, informed those at the event about initiatives undertaken at the four campuses of UWI, including enhancement of alumni outreach and a fusion of the business school and the department of management studies at the Mona campus.

DIASPORA SUPPORTS TESSANNE ON “THE VOICE”—12/11/13
Jamaicans in the United States continue to celebrate the performances of singer Tessanne Chin, who has now taken one of the top three spots in the final competition on the American television show, “The Voice.”  Diaspora members called, texted, and bought her songs on iTunes, using social media to vote for her during the competition.

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CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
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TOURISM HEAD IN GRENADA CRITICIZES BRITISH PASSENGER DUTY—12/07/13
 
INVESTIGATIONS OF HUMAN TRAFFICKING BEGINS IN DUTCH CARIBBEAN—12/08/13
 
HOUSING FINANCE THE FOCUS OF USAID IN HAITI—12/09/13
 
CARIBBEAN COUNTRIES LOOK FOR SOLUTION TO TEEN PREGNANCY—12/10/13
 
VIRTUAL “TAKE-OVER” OF DOMINICA BY BEIJING—12/11/13
 
NEW TOBACCO INDUSTRY LAUNCHED IN BAHAMAS—12/12/13

 

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BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
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UNITED STATES SUPPORTS CARIBBEAN ENERGY MARKET—12/07/13
The United States has announced that it plans to support a regional Caribbean energy market during discussions between representatives of public and private sector firms. These discussions centered on the links between the financial crisis looming in the Caribbean and the fact that per capita energy costs in the region are among the highest in the world. Dr. Ernest Moniz, Secretary of Energy in the U.S., has promised to support Caribbean plans to create a local energy market.

JAMAICA TO SEE LAUNCH OF REGGAE WINE FROM INDIANA—12/08/13
Carlos Daley, the chief executive officer of Asymmetrical Investments and Financial Planning Company Ltd., is promoting the International Reggae Wine Festival in Jamaica, as well as three other festivals in Maryland in the United States. His first will introduce a wine inspired by reggae music but made in Indiana to the local Jamaican wine market in January 2014.

SUGAR REPRESENTS LARGE INVESTMENT FOR JAMAICANS—12/09/13
Millions of dollars have been invested in sugar, rum, and molasses businesses at the Long Pond and Hampden estates in Trelawny by Everglades Farms Ltd. and Seprod via the Golden Grove Sugar Company Ltd. These companies are part of a group of firms that represent one of the biggest conglomerates in the region and Central America. While the government may not vie sugar as an interesting investment, private sector investors are paying attention to this mature industry.

DAIRY INDUSTRY IN JAMAICA “IN CRISIS”—12/10/13
According to Jasmin Holness of the Jamaica Hope Cattle Breeders Society, the dairy industry on the island is facing a crisis situation. Holness said that about 25 percent of the major processors have stopped taking in milk because they have too much inventory. This means dairy farmers cannot find markets for their product, yet will still have to pay the costs of feeding and milking the animals.
 

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Caribbean Science and Technology News provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
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CANADIAN FIRM TO ENTER CARIBBEAN HYDROGEN TECH GENERATOR PROJECT—12/07/13
 
CRFM NATIONS TO INVESTIGATE FISH AGGREGATION DEVICE TO REDUCE COSTS—12/08/13
 
COSTA RICAN FIRM USES INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY FOR SHIPPING—12/10/13
 
HARD TIMES FOR CARIBBEAN SCIENCE FOUNDATION—12/12/13

 

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ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT  
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SNOOP LION UP FOR REGGAE GRAMMY AWARD—12/07/13
Snoop Lion is being rewarded for his switch to songs promoting unity and non-violence with one of five Grammy nominations for Best Reggae Album. Formerly known as Snoop Dogg, Calvin Broadus, decided to focus on anti-violence lyrics in his album “Reincarnated,” after experiencing a spiritual event that prompted him to take the name Snoop Lion.

ITY, FANCY CAT, BLAKKA ELLIS TO PLAY NEW YORK CITY—12/10/13
An end-of-the-year performance on December 29, 2013, will feature comedians Ity and Fancy Cat and Blakka Ellis as they return to New York City for one show at the Evander Childs Campus in the Bronx. The duo has entertained fans in the New York area for years, attracting Jamaican and Caribbean fans locally and globally.

INTERNATIONAL SLAVERY MUSEUM TO SHOW JAMAICAN CANOE—12/11/13
The International Slavery Museum in Liverpool in the United Kingdom will feature a Jamaican canoe in an exhibit scheduled for 2014. The boat will contain resin representations of transported slaves. Called “Their Spirits,” the piece by Laura Facey, is a traditional Jamaican canoe, five meters long, and filled with 1,357 resin representations of enslaved people. The canoe rests on a sea of sugar cane.

MASSIVE EXHIBIT TO BE MOUNTED BY NATIONAL GALLERY—12/12/13
The National Gallery of Jamaica will present “Explorations II: Religion and Spirituality” on December 22, 2013. It is the second exhibit in the new “Explorations” series, which explores significant themes in Jamaican art. It will show 67 works from the national collection representing the themes of spirituality and religion.

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SPORTS
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JAMAICA AMONG WINNERS AT REGGAE MARATHON—12/07/13
Jamaicans were among the winners at the 13th staging of the Reggae Marathon in Negril. The event drew over 1,800 participants from 34 nations to run in full and half marathons and in 10k road races. Damion Bent won the male event in the 10k with a time of 32 minutes, 4 seconds, while the half marathon was won by Kevin Campbell, also of Jamaica, with a time of one hour, 14 minutes, and 17 seconds.

PALMER, STEPHENSON LOOK FOR WIN IN SOCCER FINALS—12/08/13
Jamaica’s Lovel Palmer and Khari Stephenson are looking for a victory to end Jamaica’s two-year period of defeats in the major league soccer finals with their club, Real Salt Lake, meets Sporting Kansas City. No Jamaican player has won the top professional prize, the MLS Cup, since 2010.

RICKETTS NAMED GOALKEEPER OF THE YEAR—12/09/13
Donovan Ricketts, Jamaica’s international football player, won the Allstate Major League Soccer Goalkeeper of the Year award for the second time. Ricketts, 36, plays for the Portland Timbers. He won his first MLS award in 2010 while playing for the LA Galaxy.

DOPING REVIEW BOARD STILL UNDECIDED—12/10/13
The Doping Review Board of the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) has yet to decide to reject or approve the recommendation from the Jamaica Athletics Administrative Administration (JAAA) concerning a public warning for Jamaican sprint champion Veronica Campbell-Brown in regard to a doping violation. She tested positive for a banned substance in May 2013.

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DEVOTIONAL
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Thou Shalt Not Bellyache!

There is no easy way to say it – being around some people can be downright depressing. To listen to them speak is like reading from a book of complaints. They are often joyless, hardly ever satisfied, and their perspective on life is so skewed that their cup is always half-empty, never half-full. To tell them a cheerful “Good Morning” is to be met with an attitude that says “What’s good about it?” and to do them a favor is to be viewed with suspicion. Simply put, these people could wear out a saint.

At different times in its history, the nation of Israel was like that. In various portions of the Old Testament narratives we read of them “murmuring”, more accurately, “complaining” (e.g. Exodus 15:24; 16:2; 17:3, KJV). This despite obvious signs of God working miraculously in different situations on their behalf. According to the Psalmist, “Our fathers understood not thy wonders in Egypt; they remembered not the multitude of thy mercies; but provoked him at the sea, even at the Red sea. . . . Wondrous works in the land of Ham, and terrible things by the Red sea. . . . Yea, they despised the pleasant land, they believed not his word: But murmured in their tents, and hearkened not unto the voice of the LORD” (106:7, 22, 24-25). Can you hear them? Murmuring had become so much a part of them that they no longer listened to the voice of the LORD. That’s dangerous ground to stand on.

The LORD was not amused. The narrative tells us, “And when the people complained, it displeased the LORD” so much so that “the LORD heard it; and his anger was kindled; and the fire of the LORD burnt among them, and consumed them that were in the uttermost parts of the camp” (Numbers 11:1). Space limitation do not allow us to go fully into the verse, but it is worth noting the LORD’s initial response to the complaining: “And when the people complained, it displeased the LORD.” These are sobering words that we need to keep in mind the next time we are tempted to complain. For sure, things do not always go our way and at different times we have to face challenges, but let us not forget that God can and often use those situations to and for our benefit (Romans 8:28-29). Let us trust Him instead of complaining. He is very pleased with that.

 

CEW

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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.