The Montserrat Secondary School sports was forced to be concluded over two Wednesdays in successive weeks because of unusual downpour of rain on the first Wednesday.
At the end of April 19, 2017, Orange House with secret, but intuitive leadership and the Victor Ludorum who in strong competition gathered 37 points, Orange House was the winner with 624 points. Blue House followed with, 601, with Green House and Red House tailing with 592 and 505 respectively.
A family of athletes over the years, Anisha Turner shone for blue House capturing the Victrix Ludorum title.
Blue house tugged away with winning the tug-o-war, sweeping March past and the house rally.
In netball, Orange house won the Tournament while Green House won the Basketball tournament.
Blue and Green vs Orange and Red. Each house gained 10 point after the final score was tied at 2-2.
Below is a tabulation of champions in the different classes
CASTRIES, St. Lucia, Mar 21, CMC – The St. Lucia government Tuesday said it had embarked on a drive to clamp down on foreign nationals working here illegally.
“It has been brought to the attention of the Labour Department, that there are individuals employed at various organizations here without a valid work permit. The country`s Labour legislation mandates that overseas nationals desirous of employment in St. Lucia, must first obtain a work permit or exemption where applicable,” the Ministry of Labour said in a statement.
It warned local employers of employing foreigners who do not have the necessary documents to work here and quoted Labour Minister Stephenson King as saying that “this notification serves as a warning to employers and employees engaged in illegal employment.
“The laws of St. Lucia are clear when it comes to employment, we want people to adhere to the laws or face the penalties” said King.
The Minister of Labour said that the ongoing drive is targeted at people who do not have the necessary documentation and that employers and or employees who are currently in contravention of the law are asked to visit the Labour Department to regularize their employment status urgently.
“Failure to comply will result in the case being passes on to the Immigration Department for full enforcement of the law.
“Employers and employees should note that a foreign national who engages in occupation in St. Lucia or is employed in St. Lucia in contravention of the law is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding EC$5,000 (One EC dollar =US$0.37 cents) or imprisonment for a term not exceeding one year or both.
“Should the offence continue, the convicted is liable to a further fine not exceeding EC$500 for each day the offence continues and or imprisonment for a term not exceeding two years.”
King said the government will do what is necessary to ensure that Labour laws are upheld.
CASTRIES, St. Lucia, Mar 17, CMC – The St Lucia born poet and playwright, Sir Derek Walcott, who received the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1992, and had the distinction of bringing the history and culture of the Caribbean people to the attention of a global community died on Friday. He was 87.
He was one of two St. Lucians to have received the prestigious Nobel Prize, following Sir Arthur Lewis, who won the award for economics in 1979.
“When everyone speaks about excellence in St. Lucia and describe St. Lucia with any kind of superlatives, clearly the two names that stand tall in St. Lucia’s history are those of Sir Arthur Lewis and Sir Derek Walcott,” said Prime Minister Allen Chastanet as he led the island in paying tribute to the gifted cultural icon.
Sir Derek Alton Walcott, died at his home at Cap Estate, north of here, and had been ailing for some time and had been on a dialysis machine, a family source said.
He had recently been released from hospital and passed away peacefully with his family at his bedside.
“While he and I may not have agreed on everything, he was always very consistent and very emotional about being Caribbean and being original,” Chastanet, said describing Sir Derek as someone who always participated in many national events.
“He continued to fly the flag real high,” Chastanet said, adding “we can now sit back and reflect on his achievements which are so incredible”.
The St. Lucia government has ordered all fly flags to be flown at half mast, at least until Tuesday.
“I am in discussion with his wife, his partner, Sigrid and also in discussion with the artistic community here in St. Lucia of what other tributes we can pay to this icon of a man,” Chastanet said.
Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretary General Irwin LaRocque tweeted that Walcott was “a Caribbean treasure” while the sub-regional Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) said that Walcott’s “soul will forever live on through his body of award-winning literary works”.
OECS Chairman and St. Kitts-Nevis Prime Minister Dr. Timothy Harris said that Walcott weas awarded the Nobel Prize in 1992 “for a poetic oeuvre of great luminosity, sustained by a historical vision, the outcome of a multicultural commitment.
“Sir Walcott’s poetry was a reflection of his deep commitment to his country and the Caribbean, as it masterfully captured the physical beauty of his milieu. It was this idyllic social environment that he gravitated towards throughout his life, choosing to spend much of his time in his homeland of St. Lucia where he died today at the age of 87.”
Dominican-born playwright Dr. Alwyn Bully, whose theatre company had produced many of Walcott’s plays, described him “as one of the greatest writers of the world.
“I think he also had the distinction of bringing the history and culture of the cari8bbean people to the attention of literacy circles worldwide, Bully said, adding that Walcott had encouraged many other playwrights.
“He will be solely missed by the entire Caribbean, but his work will endure forever,” Bully said.
The international media reported Friday that Walcott’s monumental poetry, including 1973’s verse autobiography, Another Life, and his Caribbean reimagining of The Odyssey, 1990’s Omeros, “secured him an international reputation which gained him the Nobel Prize in 1992.”
But this was matched by a theatrical career conducted mostly in the islands of his birth as a director and writer with more than 80 plays to his credit.
He won the TS Eliot Prize for Poetry in 2011. His winning collection for the TS Eliot Prize, White Egrets, was called “a moving, risk-taking and technically flawless book by a great poet” by the judges.
“The arts fraternity, St. Lucia and the world has lost one of its noted literary icons, Sir Derek Walcott,” the Cultural Development Foundation (CDF) here said in a statement, noting that “he was very vocal about the island’s culture and heritage and its preservation and his love for Saint Lucia and the Caribbean was evident in his numerous mentions of “home” in his work.
Walcott was born on January 23, 1930 in the capital, Castries and he had acknowledged that the experience of growing up on the isolated volcanic island, an ex-British colony, has had a strong influence on Walcott’s life and work.
Both his grandmothers were said to have been the descendants of slaves. His father, a Bohemian watercolourist, died when Derek and his twin brother, Roderick, were only a few years old. His mother ran the town’s Methodist school.
After studying at St. Mary’s College here and at the University of the West Indies (UWI) in Jamaica, Walcott moved in 1953 to Trinidad, where he worked as theatre and art critic. At the age of 18, he made his debut with 25 Poems, but his breakthrough came with the collection of poems, In a Green Night (1962).
In 1959, he founded the Trinidad Theatre Workshop which produced many of his early plays.
For many years, he has divided his time between Trinidad, where he had his home as a writer, and Boston University, where he taught literature and creative writing.
His illustrious body of work includes: Three Plays: The Last Carnival; Beef, No Chicken and A Branch of the Blue Nile (1969), Dream on Monkey Mountain and Other Plays (1970), The Joker of Seville and O Babylon! (1978), Remembrance and Pantomime (1980), The Isle is Full of Noises (1982), Omeros (1990) and The Odyssey: A Stage Version (1992).
Walcott received numerous awards including a Royal Society of Literature Award, the Queen’s medal of Poetry and a MacArthur Foundation genius award. In 2016, as part of Independence celebrations, he was given the title of “Sir”, one of the first to be knighted under the Order of St. Lucia.
Sir Derek Walcott, is survived by three children Peter, Elizabeth, and Anna.
State funeral for Sir Derek Walcott
The St. Lucia government Tuesday announced that the Nobel Laureate Sir Derek Alton Walcott, will be given a state funeral on Saturday.
State funerals are usually reserved for heads of state and governments, but the Allen Chastanet government approved of the decision on Monday in light of Walcott’s exceptional contribution to the literary and artistic legacy of St.Lucia, the Caribbean and the world.
The funeral of Sir Derek poet, artist, playwright, and 1992 Nobel Laureate in Literature, will take place at the Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in the capital starting at 2.00 pm (local time) and his body will lie in state at the Parliament for public viewing ahead of the service that will be broadcast live and shown on television screens at the nearby Square that bears Walcott’s name.
Sir Derek will be buried at Morne Fortune, near the Inniskilling Monument, a site vested in the St. Lucia National Trust and within close proximity of fellow Nobel Laureate, Sir Arthur Lewis.
A government statement noted that an evening of tribute and celebration will be held on Friday at the National Cultural Centre hosted by the Cultural Development Foundation and will include readings, recitations and performances by local and visiting artists, writers and musicians.
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, Mar 14, CMC- A 15-year-old boy is due to re-appear in court on March 27 after he was charged with the murder of a retired member of the Trinidad and Tobago Defence Force during the Carnival celebrations.
The boy, appeared before Deputy Chief Magistrate Maria Busby Earle-Caddle in the Port of Spain Eighth Magistrate’s Court on Monday charged with killing 56-year-old Calvert James, who died on February 27, Carnival Monday, from multiple stab wounds.
The retired soldier was killed during an incident on the outskirts of the capital. The Director of Public Prosecution, Roger Gaspard SC, on March 11, gave instructions to charge the teenager with murder.
The teenager, who cannot be identified because of his age as he deemed a minor by law, has since been remanded to the St Michael’s Boys Rehabilitation Centre.
KINGSTON, Jamaica, Mar 10, CMC – A pastor has been jailed for 20 years after he was found guilty of having sex with a minor two years ago.
Justice Lorna Shelly Williams Friday sentenced Pastor Reverend Paul Hanniford of the Pentecostal City Mission Church after he was found guilty by a seven-member jury on January 24.
Rape fear – alarm
The Office of the Director of Public Prosecution (OFPP) said the complainant, who is now 15 years old, testified in court that on March 12, 2015, she and her five-year-old brother went to the church for choir practice and after the rehearsal they asked the pastor for a ride.
But the Home Court was told that the child, who was a member of the Pentecostal City Mission Church and was baptised by Hanniford was taken to the pastor’s home in Kingston.
“The pastor gave the five-year-old some cornflakes to eat. The complainant requested the use of the bathroom and while there in the bathroom the pastor entered. The complainant was pushed by the pastor outside the bathroom onto a bed that was inside a nearby bedroom and sexually assaulted her,” the ODPP said in the statement.
The Court was told that the child managed to push the pastor off and went outside of the bedroom to meet her brother, who had heard her cries for help.
The statement said that the brother had climbed onto a chair and peeped through a hole in the door and observed Pastor Hanniford sexually assaulting his sister which made him feel “sad”.
According to the evidence presented to the court, after the incident the pastor gave them some cornflakes to eat and later warned the complainant not to tell anyone as it was their “secret”.
He took them back to the church where the mother of the children met them. The complainant’s brother made a report to his mother in the presence of the pastor about what he had seen.
The following day a meeting was convened at the church with the bishop, the pastor, the complainant, her brother and the children’s parents.
On April 14, 2015, a report was made to the police and the pastor was arrested. He was subsequently charged.
In his defence at the trial, the pastor denied having sexual intercourse with the complainant and said that he had given the children a drive out but not on the day in question.
CASTRIES, St. Lucia, Feb 24, CMC – The St. Lucia government Friday apologised over an “Independence message” posted on the official Facebook page of Prime Minister Allen Chastanet saying that it was not approved by the relevant authorities
“The Communications Unit of the Office of the Prime Minister wishes to make it clear that as soon as we became aware of the reported Facebook post we immediately removed it from circulation. The only persons authorized to approve postings on the page is the Prime Minister himself and the Senior Communications Officer for the Government,” the government said in a statement.
It said that since coming to office in June last year “it appears that there were still individuals who had access to the Prime Minister’s Facebook page who made the posting without authorization.
“This has since been addressed internally and we assure the public this situation will not happen again and we will do all within our power to maintain the integrity of our official social media platforms.
“Despite not authorizing the mentioned Facebook post we apologize for any misunderstandings or misconceptions it may have created,” the statement added.
In the original posting, Chastanet is reported to have called on citizens to put aside their difference for the betterment of the island.
It also quoted the prime minister, who led his United Workers Party (UWP) to victory in the general elections, last June, as praising the electorate for changing a government “through a remarkably peaceful electoral process”.
But in the statement, Friday, the government said that the “Official statement for Independence Day, February 22nd 2017, was delivered…by (the) Minister for Equity, Social Justice and Empowerment Honourable Lenard Montoute at …(the) Independence Youth Rally at the Daren Sammy Cricket Stadium.
“During the period of Independence the Prime Minister delivered three statements which included a recorded Independence message to the Diaspora, an address to the audience at the Independence Ball and a brief impromptu introduction of the Minister designated officially to give the Government’s Independence Message Minister Montoute at the Youth Rally,” the statement added
GEORGETOWN, Guyana, Feb 23, CMC – Guyana is marking the 47th anniversary of republican status with President David Granger saying it provides an opportunity to “celebrate the uniqueness of our nationhood”.
Addressing the flag raising ceremony at D’urban Park, Granger paid tribute to early inhabitants of the country whom he said “have welded our country, irreversibly, into a plural society.
“The Republic guaranteed greater cultural freedom, encouraged diverse beliefs, respected differences of creed, culture, race or religion and entrenched constitutional protection to proscribe discrimination.
“The Republic started the task of shaping a society that was culturally plural by promoting the unhindered celebration of the Christian, Islamic and the Hindu festivals. The Republic aspired to ensure that we would live together in harmony free from racial and religious conflict,” he added.
Granger said Guyana is committed to eliminating extreme poverty, eradicating inequalities; expanding the space for cultural diversity and enhancing the sense of national belonging.
He said the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) country is becoming a more socially cohesive country, working “towards the well-being of all its members, fights exclusion and marginalisation, creates a sense of belonging [and] promotes trust.
“Guyana’s various cultural threads have been interwoven into the tapestry of nationhood. We celebrate, today, our republicanism and our pluralism. We have achieved unity by our diversity.”
In his address, President Granger highlighted the contributions of East Indians to the country’s development as they also celebrate the 100th anniversary of their arrival here as indentured servants.
He said said 2017 is an opportunity for Guyana to celebrate the contributions of the Indian community and credited the almost 240,000 Indians, who were transported to then British Guiana from 1838 to work mainly on sugar plantations, with contributing to the cultural and economic development of Guyana.
“Most of the indentured immigrants remained to make our country their home at the end of their contracts of service. They invigorated our cultural life with devotional festivals, colourful dress, tasty foods, vivacious dance, vibrant music, two great world religions – Hinduism and Islam – and other cultural retentions.
“Indian indentured immigration reshaped our economic landscape by making an indelible mark on the cattle, coconut, fishing, rice and sugar industries. The Indian impact is visible on every aspect of national life – the arts, business, diplomacy, education, engineering, industry, jewellery, law, media, medicine, politics, the public service and trade unionism,” he said.
President Granger said Guyana’s 47th anniversary as a republic “is a happy occasion to celebrate the uniqueness of our nationhood” intensified efforts to unite the descendants of fore-parents who were brought to these shores, either as enslaved workers or indentured labourers, to toil on the plantations.
“Independence reminded us, also, that it was their struggles – their resistance, revolts and riots on the plantations – which helped to make their descendants a free people and to make this country a free state.
“The establishment of the Cooperative Republic on 23rd February 1970 intensified our efforts to unite our peoples into a plural nation under the inspirational motto – ‘One people, One nation, One destiny’,” he said.
Working in partnership with the UWI Seismic Research Centre (UWI-SRC), as well as support from the Ministry of Education, the Montserrat Volcano Observatory (MVO), launched a children’s book entitled “Volcano Stories”.
On the evening of Thursday, January 26, Her Excellency the Governor, Elizabeth Carriere hosted the launch at her residence at Government House in Woodlands, with attendance and the participation of MVO and government officials, along with a small cross section of the public, parents and winning children writers of the volcano stories which are featured in the book.
As a MVO communique informs, “The one-of-a-kind storybook features the 26 winning entries out of a Creative Writing Competition hosted by the MVO in 2013, where teenagers and children were invited to submit stories under the theme “A Volcano’s Touch”.
In a brief ceremony, MVO Director Roderick Stewart introduced the host of the launch, Her Excellency the Governor, opening by very briefly describing that the “new book of children stories that were written as entrants to our creative writing competition. The prize winners some of them have been collected in this book…”
The Governor after welcoming all guests to Government House and the book launch congratulated the students for their work and the MVO for bringing it all together in a stunning hard cover book. She said the book Volcano Stories, “which is an amazing production, not just because it represents the quality of young people’s excellent writing, imaginative writing, creative writing, but also some photographs and drawings from local artists.”
She added that “it’s beautifully produced, it’s a lovely book.” and that everyone should be proud of it. She congratulations the M.V.O. and the SRC hoping that it “it will be distributed in the schools,” while confirming that support for the book also came from the Ministry of Education. Promised and pledged to support the islands youth in their future educational endeavours.
Hon Osborne said: “This is a great achievement for not only children but for us here as Montserratians because when you think about the age of these children… I must say I want to encourage the youths in Montserrat to keep this up; and I’m going to support them in anything that they want to do as long as I think it makes sense.”
‘Volcano Stories’ described as a ‘one-of-a-kind storybook, features the 26 winning entries out of a Creative Writing Competition hosted by the MVO in 2013. Teenagers and younger children were invited to submit stories under the theme “A Volcano’s Touch”. It was illustrated and brought to life with colourful artwork by various Caribbean artists.
The book, suitable for both children and adults, takes the reader to fantastical worlds on volcanic adventures of all kinds, and also to explore Montserrat, the beautiful Caribbean island where so many lives have been touched and forever changed by a volcano.’
At the end Governor Carriere distributed signature books a few of the young authors of the stories.
The book commemorates in some sense, Montserrat’s Soufrière Hills Volcano which has been erupting since 1995, rendering more than half of the island uninhabitable, including the capital city Plymouth. Montserrat has managed to rebuild itself and adapt to living with an erupting volcano. “Volcano Stories” is the only book of its kind as it highlights living with the volcano and the process of adaptation from the unique and imaginative perspective of Montserratian children.
PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad, Jan 18, CMC – The Senate late Tuesday night approved the amendment to the Marriage Bill, raising the legal age of marriage to 18, but without the support of opposition legislators and at least one Independent Senator.
Leader of the Opposition Business in the Senate, Wade Mark, had earlier during the debate supported the raising of the age of marriage to 18 years.
However, he said, the main opposition United National Congress (UNC) was also suggesting there be an exception for children between 16 and 18 years, in circumstances where there is parental and judicial consent, where legal aid is provided and where the child is involved in the decision.
Mark had also suggested that the Miscellaneous Provisions (Marriage) Bill 2016 be sent to a joint select committee of Parliament so as to allow civil society groups and religious bodies a further opportunity to express their views on amendments to the legislation.
Mark said the opposition party also had concerns with the TT$50,000 (One TT dollar =US$0.16 cents) fine and seven year imprisonment proposed in the bill to be “draconian, oppressive and excessive.”
Clause 27 (b) of the bill states that a person who wilfully and knowingly solemnise the marriage of a person who is under the age 18, commits an offence and is liable on conviction and indictment to a fine of TT$50,000 and imprisonment of seven years.
Mark, a former speaker of the parliament, called on the Keith Rowley government to provide the Children’s Authority with resources to protect children from statutory rape.
“So let me make it clear that the UNC, as it relates to contract marriage, is committed to what the Attorney General put in the legislation as 18 years and over…but we have an exception. With the consent of the parents, judge, the involvement of the child and with the provision of legal aid if they do not have the means.”
But in her contribution to th4e debate Labour Minister Jennifer Baptiste-Primus said she would not wish for her grandchildren to be married at the age of 12.
“I want them to have a future and getting married at such a young age cuts their future, brings it to an abrupt end,” she said, questioning the calls made by religious leaders for the laws to remain the same.
“I have observed that most of the people who are requesting that the law not be amended and that legal rape remain in place, they have all been men. Where are the women from these organisations? Or is it that these organisations do not have women? It is only the men that are the talking point. That must be of concern to all of us,” she said.
“Hardback men in this society, Madam President, with 12-year-old girls. One shudders,” she said.
She criticised Mark for being influenced by “public pressure” and making it seem that the UNC had always supported the increased marriage age when they are using temporary senators to provide an opposing view.
She said child marriage is an imposition which affects more girls than boys and the records show that child marriages are organised in many instances as a result of wanting to emerge from poverty by selling the child for a price.
“Madam President, this is serious business, how long can we continue to tolerate our very young children being lost and never found?” she asked.
Prior to the vote, Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi said that a simple majority was now needed to pass the legislation. Mark and other opposition legislators abstained, so too, Dr. Dhanayshar Mahabir, an Independent Senator and a lecturer at the University of the West Indies (UWI).
The bill was passed with 23 in favour and five abstentions.
Sunrise Productions this week announced that “Number 15 is proud to announce the national debut of ‘ALONE’, a short film which brings into focus the issue of child abuse.”
‘ALONE’ will screen at the Montserrat Cultural Centre (MCC) on Sunday January 22, 2017 at 6:00 p.m.
The premiere of the short film is presented under the auspices of Dr. Samuel Joseph, founder of the Prevent, Protect, and Pursue (PPP) Charity. It will be preceded by a red-carpet pre-show, allowing print and broadcast journalists, photographers and videographers the opportunity to interview and capture images of the director/producer, cast and crew.
The film, produced by local videographer Jerely Brown, features around two girls with different lives who suffer from the effects of child abuse. Both thought they were alone, until becoming friends gave them the strength they needed to overcome their adversities. The buzz worthy film involves local up and coming actors/actresses, Amuelle Kirnon, Darion Darroux, Eurlanzo Jeffers, Jahnelle Francis, Jerely Browne, Jhovan Daniel, Mikila Gittens, Sandrae Thomas, Theonna Johnson and Zenoushka Meade.
Following will be a reception and then the presentation of ‘ALONE’, rounding off with entertainment by Pulse.