THIS WEEK”S SUMMARY
U.S. REVOKES VISA OF O’GILVIE, “DUDUS” BUSINESS ASSOCIATE—07/16/11
The United States Embassy in Jamaica revoked the visitor visa of Justin O’Gilvie, a former associate of Christopher “Dudus” Coke, alleged drug lord. According to the embassy, O’Gilvie has a visitor’s visa but is has not been able to cancel this visa physically. Therefore, it has issued a letter requesting airlines to prohibit him from boarding any flights bound for the U.S. on the basis of that visa. O’Gilvie was partnered with Coke in Incomparable Enterprises Limited.
JAMAICAN POULTRY FARMERS FIGHT DUTY REDUCTIONS—07/17/11
Poultry producers in Jamaica plan to present a petition designed to pressure the Ministry of Agriculture to join with them in fighting a plan to reduce the taxation of chicken imports. The proposed cuts from the Ministry of Finance, which are meant to reform the Common External Tariff structure, would lower the duty on chicken to 20 percent from 100 percent.
ISLAND-WIDE TRAIN SYSTEM CONCEPT RENEWED—07/18/11
According to Jamaica’s Minister of Transportation Mike Henry, the government is looking for approximately $300 million from private investors to revive an island-wide train system suspended some 20 years ago. A temporary train service instituted between Spanish Town and Linstead has been successful in its month-long trial run. Over 2,000 passengers have ridden the train each day.
SCRAP METAL THIEVES DAMAGING BUSINESSES IN KINGSTON —07/19/11
Business owners in Kingston are asking police to help in stopping the illegal trade in scrap metal. According to Howard Mitchell of Corpack Jamaica Ltd., thieves have taken the telephone cables that line the north side of Marcus Garvey drive, which has eliminated the phone communications for him and other businesses in the area. Without phones, product orders have fallen by 50 percent, and several people have lost their jobs, says Mitchell.
GOVERNMENT APPROVES TRANSFER OF JPS SHARES TO KOREAN FIRM—07/19/11
Jamaica’s Cabinet has given its approval for transferring 40 percent of the shares of Jamaica Public Service (JPS) to the Korea East West Power Company. The shares were sold by Marubeni, a Japanese company that had held 80 percent of the JPS stock. Now both Marubeni and Korea East West own 40 percent of JPS. Clive Mullings, Minister of Energy in Jamaica, says the Korean firm is expected to improve JPS operations significantly.
JAMAICAN WOMAN WINS MISS DEAF INTERNATIONAL TITLE FOR 2011—07/20/11
Cassandra Whyte is the winner of the Miss Deaf International 2011 competition. She is the first Jamaican representative to win this honor. Whyte was selected from a field of over 20 young women representing countries including China, South Africa, Brazil, the United States, India, Mexico, and Mongolia. Whyte will act as an ambassador for deaf women around the globe.
JLP MEMBER CRITICIZES JPS FOR HURTING THE POOR—07/21/11
Everald Warmington, Jamaica Labor Party (JLP) Member of Parliament, has rejected a government announcement stating that Marubeni Corporation will be allowed to transfer half of its shares in the Jamaica Public Service (JPS) firm to a Korean company. Warmington says this will only create a larger monopoly that will charge more for power, even as Jamaicans currently struggle to pay these bills. He has called for the government to eliminate the operating monopoly altogether.
RESIDENTS IN LAURISTON AFRAID AFTER BEHEADINGS—07/22/11
People living in the Lauriston community in Spanish Town, St. Catherine, are worried after several gruesome crime discoveries in the neighborhood. In a period of two days, three individuals were found dead, the victims of beheadings. Police believe the acts are related to feuding factions inside the Clansman gang over who should assume leadership. Many area residents are afraid to leave their homes, and while others are thinking of moving out of the neighborhood permanently, since the killings are targeting non-gang members.
JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
PENN RELAYS SOMETIMES USED AS UNLAWFUL ROUTE INTO U.S.—07/18/11
Jamaicans have provided strong performances during their participation in the Penn Relays, the track and field event held yearly in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. However, it may be that some of the Jamaicans who applied for visas, allegedly so they could participate in the competition, actually only disguised themselves as athletes and obtained the visas in order to make an illegal back-door entry into the United States, according to the U.S. State Department.
JAMAICAN BRIDE LEAVES NEW HUSBAND MINUTES AFTER ARRIVING IN UK—07/19/11
Johnny Gannon, 57, paid £5,000 to fly his new Jamaican bride to Scotland where he thought they would begin their married life together. However, Patrice Chambers, 24, left Gannon just 20 minutes after her arrival at his home in the United Kingdom. Chambers got on a train and went to meet her Jamaican boyfriend, with whom she had conspired to carry out this plan to get her into the country. Gannon says he was surprised at her actions, since he had known her for two years and thought their relationship was genuine.
JAMAICAN CONVICTED OF KILLING WIFE CAN BECOME U.S. CITIZEN—07/20/11
A judge in the United States has determined that a Jamaican immigrant, who was convicted of murdering his wife in 1985, has the right to become an American citizen. Vernon Lawson, 65, convinced the court that he was a reformed man. Lawson stabbed his wife to death while under the influence of the drug PCP. He served over 13 years in prison for the crime and overcame his addictions during that time. He became a drug and alcohol counselor after his release. The judge found that Lawson suffered from post-traumatic stress syndrome when he committed the crime and that he has redeemed himself since leaving prison.
JAMAICAN STARTS SERVICE FIRM IN NEW YORK—07/21/11
Karene Stewart, a Jamaican-born entrepreneur, has created Casually Chic, a New York concierge company that helps individuals who are too busy to deal with activities like shopping and closet organizing. Stewart established her company in 2008 and has attracted clients from London and Paris. She is introducing the firm to the global market. While her firm is based in New York City, Stewart has the capabilities of meeting the demands of international customers.
CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
INTEREST IN BEEKEEPING ENCOURAGED BY GUYANA PRIME MINISTER—07/16/11
CARICOM WANTS EXPERTS TO STUDY MIGRATION—07/17/11
ENDANGERED SPECIES LIZARD SPECIES MAKING COMEBACK IN CARIBBEAN—07/18/11
FIFA LEADER TO FACE BAN FROM WORLD FOOTBALL—07/19/11
CARIBBEAN RESIDENTS CONCERNED ABOUT REGION’S CRIME RATE—07/20/11
ECONOMIC GROWTH IN CARIBBEAN RISES BY 1.9 PERCENT—07/21/11
BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
DIGICEL/CLARO DEAL DECISION EXPECTED SOON—07/16/11
Digicel, the telecommunications company, is about to discover whether its planned takeover of Claro, a mobile provider in Jamaica, will receive the approval of the Office of Utilities Regulation and the Fair Trading Commission. It has been over three months since the company first announced the deal. According to Daryl Vaz, Minister for Information, Telecommunications and Special Project, the deal could have major implications for consumers and competitiveness in the industry.
COMPANY MAKES MULTI-MILLIONS ON SALE OF ENERGY ASSETS—07/17/11
TAQA, a firm based in Abu Dhabi, has made a profit totaling US$7.6 million by selling its energy assets in Jamaica and the Caribbean. Damian Obiglio, president and chief executive of Jamaica Public Service Company (JPS), contradicted earlier reports that TAQA sold its stake in the regional assets without gain or loss. In 2010, TAQA divested its stake in a joint venture with Marubeni in the Caribbean that featured a 40-percent share of JPS.
STATE-OF-THE-ART BUSINESS COMPLEX OPENS IN ST. ANN’S BAY—07/18/11
The Evansville Business and Entertainment Complex as opened in St. Ann’s Bay, providing a boost for development in the area. The new business complex includes ballrooms, air-conditioned bars, conference halls, and offices spaces ranging from 600 square feet to 3,000 square feet. The building’s facilities are available for all types of functions, such as weddings, graduations, live shows, and conferences.
AIR TRAVEL RANKING DROPS FOR JAMAICA—07/20/11
Jamaica has fallen below Trinidad and Tobago in the air-travel rankings published by Global Traveler. Jamaica’s ranking has dropped five positions after T&T acquired the majority share of Air Jamaica. The top five countries in the rankings were Germany, France, the United Kingdom, the United States, and Turkey.
TECHNOLOGY NEWS SUMMARY
START-UP MINES WEATHER DATA FOR PROFIT—07/19/11
EarthRisk Technologies has created a web-based software application that predicts extreme heat events 30 to 40 days before they occur. HeatRisk software is targeted for meteorologists working at energy firms and other organizations that need long-range forecasting to adjust their risk from extremes of heat or cold. EarthRisk plans similar product for a more general audience and is trying to determine whether the technology can be used to predict extreme storms.
PROUST SOCIAL NETWORK AIDS USERS IN TELLING LIFE STORIES—07/20/11
The Proust social network, which was named after the 19th-century French author Marcel Proust, is designed to encourage participants to explore their past histories. It asks users to discuss specific memories and experiences, offering several categories of questions that seek to elicit how a person feels about events in their lives and life in general. The network allows users to share their life histories with as much or little detail as desired, and then decide whether or not to share these stories with other Proust members.
CARIBBEAN TECHNOLOGY NEWS SUMMARY provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
BENEFITS OF TECHNOLOGY ENJOYED AT SHEFFIELD ALL-AGE SCHOOL—07/16/11
The Sheffield All-Age School in Westmoreland has the benefit of a fully furnished computer laboratory provided by the Afro-Caribbean Technology Exchange. The lab represents a five-year plan that had to overcome problems associated with relocating the school and dealing with its supply of electricity. According to Vice-principal Jean Manning, the school can now use computer equipment to help students learn. There are 15 laptops available to teachers and 25 new desktop computers, plus other digital equipment. The total cost of the technology is US$63,000. The school has 470 students.
JAMAICAN FOOTBALL PLAYERS LOGGED ON WEB DATABASE—07/17/11
Pro-Goals Sports, a sports talent management company based in the United States, is using a new idea to elevate the Jamaican football team onto the information superhighway. The company will post important information about the Jamaican players and leagues on an Internet-based databank that can be accessed by the entire world. Clubs, agents, scouts, and other interested parties will be able to find this information efficiently and quickly. The company has already started to collect the information, which will be available on SoccerAssociation.com in about a month.
TECH AWARDS GIVEN TO FOUR WINDS INTERACTIVE—07/18/11
Four Winds Interactive has obtained four industry awards for developing an interactive method of wayfinding for Royal Caribbean International. The firm, a provider of digital signage solutions, created a way for customers, guests, workers, and other visitors at stores, hotels, and other kinds of businesses to find their way through the facility via a touch-screen display. This has been especially useful on cruise ships.
MORE YOUNG PEOPLE IN JAMAICA USE THE INTERNET—07/19/11
Almost 75 percent of the young people in Jamaica log on to the Internet to find information or interact with their friends via social networking, according to the 2010 Jamaica National Youth Survey. Nearly 74 percent of people between the ages of 15 and 24 have access to computers. Forty-seven percent use computers in their homes. Ninety-three percent use computers chiefly for Internet access. Six percent access the Internet through a cell phone.
LOVELLA ELLIS CONTINUES FATHER’S LEGACY—07/17/11
Lovella Ellis is the daughter of Alton Ellis, the Jamaican rocksteady musician. She spent years in activities other than music, but has decided to follow in her father’s example by taking up a career as a singer. She is becoming increasingly well-known in London, where she grew up, but has yet to impact the Jamaican stage. Her only performance in Jamaica was at her father’s funeral. The negative attitude toward women in the music industry concerns Ellis, and she worries about women who are easily manipulated.
ZIGGY MARLEY NOTES DIFFERENCES BETWEEN HIMSELF AND FATHER—07/19/11
While Ziggy Marley is proud to carry on the legacy of his father Bob Marley, he emphasizes that there are differences between them. Bob Marley died at the age of 36 when Ziggy was 12; He is now 42 and says he and his father had disagreements while he was growing up. He also notes the fact that his was born in a town, but his father was born in the country. Ziggy Marley has written a song about his father’s womanizing, noting that he made his mother’s life difficult. Ziggy also notes the inability of Bob Marley to eliminate the “yes men” from his life, which is why Ziggy spends time along or with a small number of friends instead of with an entourage.
MYA SCHEDULED TO PERFORM WITH WAYNE WONDER—07/20/11
Jamaican dancehall deejay Wayne Wonder will be one of the performers at Reggae Sumfest 2011 at Catherine Hall in Montego Bay. The American R&B singer Mya will be performing with him. Mya, a Grammy winner, accepted an invitation from Wonder to participate in Sumfest. The two collaborated on a remix of Wonder’s “If I Ever,” which received considerable airplay in both foreign and local markets.
SHAGGY GIVES SHOW IN HOMETOWN—07/21/11
Shaggy, the best-selling dancehall artist, performed his reggae music on his home island. His free performance for fellow Jamaicans included a number of other reggae stars. Shaggy told MTV News that he wanted to present a show in the place where he was born and raised and wanted the worldwide audience to know that dancehall music is alive in Jamaica. The show included Bounty Killer, Elephant Man, Dr. Genius, Christopher Martin, QQ, and other prominent artists.
WILSON WINS AT LIEGE INTERNATIONAL MEET—07/16/11
Nickiesha Wilson, 25, was the only athlete from the English-speaking Caribbean to obtain a victory at the Province of Liege International meet in Belgium. She clocked 56.97 seconds to win the women’s 400 meter hurdles. She is seeking a place on the Jamaican team for the World Championships in South Korea.
DIXON PERFORMS AT HER BEST IN PUERTO RICO—07/18/11
Vonette Dixon had one of her best performances of the 2011 season on the final day of the Senior Central America and Caribbean Championships in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico. Dixon took the gold medal in the women’s 100-meter hurdles final, clocking 12.77 seconds. Her win opened the way to a Jamaican sweep of medals in the sprint hurdles.
GRANGE PRAISES JAMAICA’S SPECIAL OLYMPIANS—07/20/11
Olivia Grange, Jamaican Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture, praised the performance of the Jamaican team at the Special Olympics World Summer Games in Athens, Greece, as “inspirational.” The team came away with 31 medals, 12 of which were gold, 14 silver, and 5 bronze. At a luncheon to celebrate the victories in St. Andrew, Grange said everyone on the team was a winner, since they overcame a variety of challenges to achieve their victories.
JAMAICA DEFEATS TRINIDAD & TOBAGO IN WICB REGIONAL UNDER-19 MATCH—07/21/11
Jamaica beat Trinidad and Tobago on the last day of the first round of the WICM Regional Under-19 tournament. The Jamaican team only needed 19 runs to win, and Oshane Walters and John Campbell reach that number in two overs for a 10-wicket victory.
Making the Right Decisions in Tough Situations
It started out as a simple stroll. It was at the time when kings go forth to battle and Israel, under the military leadership of David’s designate, Joab, was at war with the Ammonites. The narrative tells us that while Israel besieged Rabbah, David stayed in Jerusalem. On this particular spring evening and with his army doing well in battle, “it came to pass . . . that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king’s house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon” (2 Samuel 11:2, KJV).
Even if the Scripture did not tell us what happened next, chances are good we could have figured out how this drama unfolded. A handsome and powerful king with time on his hands, so to speak, looking across the way at a beautiful naked woman is fertile ground for trouble. Like Eve in the very beginning, and countless others since then, David found himself in the proverbial “wrong place at the wrong time.” In Genesis we read of Eve, “And when the woman saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was pleasant to the eyes, and a tree to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat” (3:6). Instead of sensing imminent danger when she was first approached by the serpent (Genesis 3:1) and removing herself from that place back to where she should have been, she stood to reason with the serpent and lost that battle. David, standing on the roof gazing at this beautiful specimen of God’s creation, had a moment in time to decide if he would make a hasty retreat and go back into the house. However, the narrative continues, “And David sent and enquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite? And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house” (2 Samuel 11:3-4).
For some of us, being innocently in the “wrong place at the wrong time” brings its own challenges. The magnitude may not be like that of David’s, in this instance, but we find ourselves in situations we did not foresee and did not plan for. Suddenly, it seems, we are presented with an opportunity to do something we would not normally do. The seemingly helpful co-worker of the opposite sex, the busy-eyed flirtatious fellow believer, the chance to take something that is not ours, to look a something we should not be looking at, the compliment or email from someone we know we should stay away from for our integrity’s sake. Danger lurks and seductively so. Right there and then we have to decide; we must decide. It would be wonderful if we could all affirm that we would make or have always made the right decisions, but as we have seen, that is not always the case. The immediate consequences of his actions were that a husband was murdered and an innocent baby died. His circumstances remind us that we must always be vigilant; we must not let our guards down. We cannot afford to admire, think on, rationalize, or reason through the circumstances of our testings. Instead, let us be quick to “get out of there.” It is not always easy but He has promised, “My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness” (2 Corinthians 12:9). With His help and by His grace, we can make the right decisions.
How are you doing with your challenges?
The weekly news is compilation of new articles from top Caribbean and Jamaican news sources.