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Hurricane Beryl Continues To Track Closer To Caribbean Islands, Hurricane Watch Issued For Dominica

By  //  July 6, 2018

ABOVE VIDEO: Meteorologist Mike Lyons of WPBF News has the latest on Hurricane Beryl. (WPBF 25 News Video)

BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – Category 1 Hurricane Beryl continues to roll closer to the Caribbean as the first hurricane watch has been issued for the Dominica Island, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC).

Tropical Storm Watch has been issued for Martinique, Guadeloupe, St. Martin, and St. Barthelemy.

After the latest NHC report, Beryl continues to hold steady at 80 mph max sustained winds and moving to the west at 15 mph.

On the current forecast track, the center of Hurricane Beryl will approach the Lesser Antilles over the weekend and cross the island chain late Sunday or Monday.

“Additional strengthening is forecast during the next couple of days, and Beryl is expected to still be a hurricane when it reaches the Lesser Antilles late Sunday or Monday,” said the National Hurricane Center.

“Weakening is expected once Beryl reaches the eastern Caribbean Sea on Monday, but the system may not degenerate into an open trough until it reaches the vicinity of Hispaniola and the central Caribbean Sea.”

Category 1 Hurricane Beryl continues to roll closer to the Caribbean as the first hurricane watch has been issued for the Dominica Island, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC). (TWC Image)

Hurricane-force winds extend outward up to 10 miles from the center, and tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 35 miles.

National Hurricane Center says islands west of Lesser Antilles should continue monitor the progress of Beryl, as more hurricane watches could be issued in the coming days.

Category 1 Hurricane Beryl continues to roll closer to the Caribbean as the first hurricane watch has been issued for the Dominica Island, according to the National Hurricane Center (NHC). (TWC Image)

ABOVE VIDEO: Longtime Central Florida Meteorologist and Space Coast Daily correspondent Danny Treanor offers some advice on how to prepare for the upcoming 2018 hurricane season.

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Montserrat to host OECS Environment Council Meeting

Montserrat to host OECS Environment Council Meeting

Under caption “Montserrat: still here, still home, still nice”, on June 15, 2018 we published that the Organisation of East Caribbean States (OECS) revealed that this year, the much-anticipated OECS Council of Ministers of Environment Sustainability (COMES 5) will be held in this lovely island of Montserrat.

The 5th Meeting of the Council of Ministers of Environmental Sustainability (COMES) of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) will take place in Montserrat from Tuesday, July 10 to 11, under the theme “Building Resilience on the Frontlines of Climate Change”.

The Ministry of Agriculture, Trade, Lands, Housing and the Environment (MATLHE) is preparing to welcome more than 40 delegates to the island, for the Meeting, which will be chaired by the Honourable Minister David Osborne who will address the opening ceremony, along with other speakers who will deliver remarks pertaining to environment and climate change issues on Montserrat and the region.

Minister Osborne noted that this year’s theme is important given the devastation experienced in the region last year. He said following last year’s catastrophic hurricane season, there is heightened awareness and drive in the region for all of us to become more resilient to these natural hazards which are influenced greatly by climate change.

The Minister further noted that this year’s theme “Accelerating Sustainable Development: Addressing Challenges and Creating Opportunities.” is important given the devastation experienced in the region last year. He said following last year’s catastrophic hurricane season, there is heightened awareness and drive in the region for all of us to become more resilient to these natural hazards which are influenced greatly by climate change. Minister Osborne further noted that the COMES5 Meeting provides an avenue for environment ministers in the region to take a unified position on matters affecting our environment.

The OECS in announcing the meeting in June said, “The COMES 5 comes at a critical juncture, given the severe economic and social impacts of the hurricanes of 2017 and  will provide the forum for ministers to engage with senior technocrats and development partners and to make decisions that will advance the climate and overall environmental resilience of the region.”

As part of the meeting, the delegates will deliberate on several matters to include strengthening disaster preparedness and response coordination; The Blue and Green Economies; and Energy resilience among others.

Delegates were to begin arriving on island over this weekend and will include OECS Environment Ministers, technical officers and regional partners. It is not certain how this will evolve as due to the threat of hurricane Beryl ferry operations and flights had been suspended but are expected to resume on Monday afternoon.

 

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Governor Pearce press brief after NDPRAC meeting

Montserrat prepares for the first 2018 hurricane threat

A Release following an urgent NDPRAC meeting, the third since the beginning of the hurricane season the group chaired by H E Governor Andrew Pearce is “urging residents to remain vigilant to tropical storm Beryl, as the path a storm or hurricane can change at any moment.”The National Disaster Preparedness Response Advisory Committee (NDPRAC) met at 1.00 p.m. on Saturday July 7, 2018 at the Disaster Management Coordination Agency (DMCA) to discuss the impending storm.“Disaster Management Officials provided an update on the path of Tropical Storm Beryl.“The message now is for residents to remain vigilant and to continue to monitor the path of the system, which was downgraded to a tropical storm on Saturday. Hence, there’s no need for alarm at this present time, however, persons should not be complacent as tropical storms and hurricanes are fluid by nature and can change at a moment’s notice.”The release further advised that the core NDPRAC will meet on Sunday July 8 at 12 noon following the 11 o’clock weather advisory.

Governor Pearce press brief after NDPRAC meeting

On Monday this week, under a theme: “Plan and Take Action… Always Prepare for the Unexpected”, a tabletop exercise was held here on Monday, July 2, 2018 at the Disaster Management Coordination Agency (DMCA) to test Montserrat’s readiness to respond to a tropical storm or hurricane impacting the island.

The exercise, held as part of the DMCA’s 2018 National Hurricane Conference, of which the ‘media’ was not a part, (not invited to participate, uninformed) brought together key personnel from the public sector, statutory organizations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to assess their individual plans to respond to a tropical cyclone event.

The exercise led participants through a simulated hurricane scenario and prompted them to examine their plan of action and procedures at various phases of the event and how it ties into the Montserrat National Hurricane Plan.

The goals of the exercise were to critically assess the response capability and coordination of the various organizations and agencies involved using their internal plans and resources; and to help them identify improvements that could make the difference in saving lives and to ensure business continuity at the private, public and national levels.”

In very short notice, perhaps responding to some media concerns on ignorant exclusions, His Excellency Andrew Pearce met immediately with the press, after today’s meeting with the National Disaster Preparedness Response Advisory Committee (NDPRAC), which is comprised of key senior government officials, including the governor, premier, MVO and the police, where he was quizzed on the activities of the earlier meetings.

He briefed:

While shelters most likely won’t be needed for the passing of Tropical Storm Beryl, based on its current trajectory, they are ready to be put to use.However, Montserrat still has several major issues which need to be rectified.

The governor who is witnessing his first hurricane season in Montserrat, reported that the DMCA has been working since the last hurricane season to prepare the designated 12 hurricane shelters and they are in working order and can manage about 300 people collectively.

List of hurricane shelters…

Montserrat is not where it needs to be in terms of its preparedness at this point in the hurricane season. He said working with the relevant departments, they are tackling five key areas.

The first being, non-electrical supplies and equipment for the shelters, including cots, First Aid kits and water pumps. Totaling about US$300,000, these supplies are to be managed by the DMCA once they arrive on island.

Second, electrical supplies including generators are also to be procured. However, there has been a delay in the process as they were working to establish the various power supplies and correct voltage needed for the locations.

Governor Pearce said communications can be a nightmare in emergency situations and Montserrat currently does not have enough emergency radios, and base stations are not where they need to be. The UK Government under the Hurricane Preparedness Plan for the Caribbean Overseas Territories is providing technical support to assess the island’s communications needs.

The fourth priority area is the national radio station infrastructure. The governor said EC$500,000 has been allocated to purchase a relay for Garibaldi Hill and strengthen the transmission tower on Silver Hills.

The fifth area is the personnel coordination to ensure that teams know what they are to do and everyone has shared their relevant contact information.

He said further, they are aware of the vulnerabilities and are working to address them. However, he was not optimistic that the communication challenges would be fully rectified in the coming weeks but rather saw an end of the hurricane season date as the most probable.

Hurricane expected to make landfall late Sunday

(CNN) – The year’s first Atlantic hurricane weakened Saturday morning into a tropical storm, but Caribbean islands struck by last year’s devastating hurricanes are still on alert.

Beryl remained very small, moving west-northwest at 17 mph with maximum sustained winds of 50 mph, shy of Category 1 status, according to an advisory issued at 5 p.m. ET by the National Hurricane Center.

Though the storm’s intensity could still fluctuate unpredictably, its chances of regaining hurricane strength before reaching the Lesser Antilles, the arc of islands from the US Virgin Islands to Grenada, have dropped significantly, CNN meteorologists said.

Beryl is due to reach that zone sometime late Sunday, the hurricane center said, at which point it’s likely to weaken into a tropical depression.

Later Monday the storm is expected to head south of the Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, whipping the island with minimal tropical storm-force winds as it continues to weaken.

Still, Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello has declared a state of emergency for the island that is still recovering from the devastation of Hurricanes Maria and Irma last year.

“While we don’t expect a direct hit to take place on Puerto Rico, even some of those outer bands … have the potential to knock out power” on the US territory, where Maria triggered months of power outages, CNN meteorologist Allison Chinchar said.

Rossello encouraged residents living in homes with roofs covered by blue tarps to find refuge in shelters or family members’ homes.

‘People are very aware’

News of Beryl’s approach has been enough for Puerto Ricans to flock to stores to stock up on water and dry goods.

Frances Colon, a Miami resident who is on the island for a wedding, shared a photo Friday morning of a line of people that spread to the parking lot of a Costco in the city of Bayamón.

“People are very aware, and they want to be prepared,” Colon said.

Weather watches were in effect at 11 a.m. ET Saturday, along Beryl’s expected path.

A tropical storm warning was in place in Dominica, replacing an earlier hurricane watch, and Guadeloupe. Tropical storm watches were in place in Barbados, St. Lucia, Martinique, St. Martin, St. Barthelemy, Saba and St. Eustatius, according to the hurricane center.

Earlier, the hurricane center had described the storm as “Tiny Beryl” because of “its very small size.” Tropical storm-force winds by Saturday evening extended as far as 45 miles from the storm’s center.

Storm brewing off the Carolina coast

Meanwhile, another storm, Tropical Depression 3, is crawling over the Atlantic about 150 miles off Cape Hatteras, North Carolina.

The storm is forecast to strengthen in coming days and could become a tropical storm Saturday night or Sunday, the hurricane center said Saturday morning.

No watches or warnings for that storm have been issued. A forecast model shows the storm wouldn’t approach land until Wednesday, when it could skirt Nova Scotia before impacting Newfoundland on Thursday. Both are in Canada.

The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 to November 30, and peaks from mid-August to late-October.

The year’s first named storm, Alberto, hit in late May. It made landfall on the Florida Panhandle as a subtropical storm and ushered drenching rains across states in the South and Midwest. At least five people died in incidents related to that storm.

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Caribbean Disaster Agency Highlights 5 Key Areas of Concern at Meet

(CNS) The region’s disaster management chief, Ronald Jackson, has highlighted five critical areas of focus as the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) seeks to develop “saer, more resilient and sustainable Caribbean communities”.

These include Enhancing Social Protection for the Most Vulnerable; Safeguarding Infrastructure; Economic Diversification; Environmental/Ecosystems Protection and Enhanced Operational Readiness.

Addressing the sixth Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in Cartagena, Colombia last week.

the CDEMA executive director also noted that “the region has produced a Caribbean Assessment Report that captures the performance of the Comprehensive Disaster Management Strategy over the period of implementation 2014-2016”.

He also said CDEMA was “quite pleased” with the efforts undertaken within the context of the United Nations International Strategy for Disaster Reduction, UNISDR, to better harmonize reporting within the Caribbean, adding that “we remain committed to reporting on progress in the implementation of the priorities of action”.

This year’s three-day seminar, under the theme “Towards a Less Vulnerable Region with more Resilient Communities”,  allowed participants to share experiences and lessons learned in the 2017 hurricane season, transfer knowledge and show successes related to disaster risk reduction at the regional and national levels.

In addition to Jackson, other CDEMA officials, including Deputy Executive Director Elizabeth Riley and Planning & Business Development Manager Andria Grosvenor, participated in various panel discussions and delivered presentations which emphasized the need for countries, especially Small Island Developing States (SIDS) in the Caribbean to accelerate efforts at building resilience.

It was announced that Jamaica will be the first Caribbean country to host the Seventh Session of the Regional Platform for Disaster Risk Reduction in 2020.

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structure - St. Lucia

Saint Lucia To Host Major Regional Building Standards Forum & Exhibition

OECS Media Release

Tuesday, June 12, 2018 — Caribbean countries are still recovering and rebuilding from the ravages of the 2017 hurricane season underscoring the urgent need for disaster resilience to be a top priority in the region. The building sector is of critical concern and this is being addressed in the upcoming Caribbean Building Standards Forum and Exhibition slated for June 13 to 15 at the Bay Gardens Hotel in Saint Lucia. Members of the public and journalists are invited to the event that will start at 8:30.

Hosted at the Bay Gardens Hotel, the activity is a collaboration between the OECS Commission and the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) under the theme ‘(Re)building for a Resilient and Robust Response to Disasters’.

It will bring together local and regional stakeholders in the construction and finance industries as well as development partners. The exhibition component will feature building products, technologies and services that enhance disaster resilience and preparedness. This should be of particular interest to the general public as they prepare for this year’s hurricane season which starts officially this month. 

The aim of this regional building forum is two-fold. Firstly, the OECS Commission, under the EU-funded iLAND Resilience Project, is seeking to review and discuss the 2015/2016 OECS Building Code and Guidelines to update and improve their provisions and implementation. Secondly, the CDB is leading the effort to harmonize a regional approach to disaster resilience and regulation of the building sector.

The CARICOM Regional Organization for Standards and Quality (CROSQ) is also a collaborating partner on this effort and will be participating in the forum. Member States of the OECS and the wider CARICOM region are expected to benefit from this joint appraisal and engagement of the construction sector in respect of resilience.

Presentations will be delivered by regional and international technical experts from various fields in the industry to be followed by working groups and closed sessions.

Members of the public are welcome to participate in the dialogue and the exhibition. 

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UNICEF and WFP sign agreement to strengthen governments’ cash-based transfer programmes to respond to emergencies

by STAFF WRITER

ROSEAU, Dominica, May 3, CMC –  UNICEF and World Food Programme (WFP) Regional Directors for Latin America and the Caribbean on Thursday signed an agreement to support governments in the region to be better prepared and equipped to use cash transfer programmes to assist their population during emergencies. 

UNICEF’s Marita Perceval and WFP’s Miguel Barreto signed the agreement here, at the start of a workshop to review the emergency cash-based transfer programme the two agencies supported in the Caribbean country, which was devastated by Hurricane Maria in 2017. 

In emergencies, transfers – either cash or vouchers – allow affected people to determine and prioritise their own needs and strengthen their autonomy and dignity. Additionally, they stimulate local economies and revitalise markets, thus promoting resilience in affected communities, as seen in Dominica. 

The three-month programme implemented by the Government of Dominica with the support of the two agencies in the aftermath of the Category 5 hurricane Maria, provided emergency cash transfers to 25,000 affected people, including 6,000 children. 

Payments helped families meet their basic needs, including food, clothes, hygiene items, school supplies and reconstruction materials. 

“Emergency cash helped vulnerable Dominicans who had lost so much get back on their feet again. The cash was a lifeline for affected people but it also allowed them to regain priceless strength and hope,”. Barreto said.

“We know these programmes work and can be used effectively by Governments, with our joint UN support, to prepare for and respond to future emergencies,” he added. 

“When we take care of a child in an emergency, we are not only giving immediate protection, we are making sure that she can develop to her full potential,” said Perceval.

“Dominica’s pioneering experience using cash transfers as a response to emergency breaks the barrier between humanitarian and development work, and is a testament to what the collaboration of UNICEF and WFP, under the Dominica’s government leadership, can accomplish for the region.” 

In the document , the two regional agencies  agreed to collaborate in preparing feasibility assessments to determine if a cash-based response is useful in a given country or context, and co-financing cash-based transfer programmes.

Both agencies will develop and/or strengthen key programme tools to implement cash- based transfer programmes in an emergency context; programme implementation and capacity strengthening of government partners; as well as monitoring and evaluation. 

 

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FP-logo_new_stluciatimes-195x60

UK Continues to Help Islands Rebuild after Hurricanes

Following the devastation caused by Hurricanes Irma and Maria in September 2017, the UK Government remains committed to helping Caribbean islands to build back better.  

To date, the British Government has provided £185m in aid to Caribbean, Commonwealth partner countries and UK Overseas Territories. This includes £35m in aid to hard-hit Dominica and Antigua and Barbuda, which has provided the islands’ communities with immediate humanitarian assistance, food, water, emergency shelter, roofing materials, timber, hygiene kits and seeds, and fertiliser. The UK will also make £8m available to promote hurricane and disaster resilience across the region and in individual countries.

During a recent visit to Dominica, British High Commissioner to Barbados and the Eastern Caribbean, Janet Douglas, visited areas around Pichelin and Geneva which will benefit from planned, UK-funded improvements to water systems and roads.

High Commissioner Douglas said, “The impact Hurricane Maria had on the Eastern Caribbean was devastating.  I am proud that the UK is providing vital support to help the region’s ongoing recovery. Hurricanes Irma and Maria illustrated the challenges small Caribbean islands face and the importance of helping these countries find robust and sustainable ways to combat such threats.”

Through the UK Caribbean Infrastructure Fund (UKCIF), the UK is additionally investing over £300m in infrastructure across the Caribbean islands of Antigua and Barbuda, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines and Jamaica to help increase resilience to natural disasters and the effects of climate change. This additional funding will play a vital role in laying the foundations for growth and prosperity, reduce poverty and create jobs and opportunities for the people of the Caribbean. All of which have been earmarked as high priority areas in the run up to the upcoming Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). This will take place in London in April 2018.

In preparation for the 2018 transatlantic hurricane season, RFA Mounts Bay is currently embarking on a wider regional mandate, to lend further support to recovering UK Overseas Territories and independent countries. The ship’s Captain, David Buck, met with Executive Director of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA) during his most recent visit to Bridgetown, reaffirming the commitment of both parties to be better placed to handle possible disasters this year. The ship also visited Antigua and Barbuda while in the region, reiterating that the British Navy vessel continues to be on short notice, to react to any emerging crises around the Caribbean.

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Dr Warren Smith

US800M available from CDB for hurricane recovery

– following Bank’s strong 2017 performance

By Staff Writer February 9, 2018

Dr Warren Smith

President of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), Dr Warren Smith,  on Wednesday announced that the institution is making US$700 to 800 million available to help Borrowing Member Countries (BMCs) recover from the impact of the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season.

The funding, which the Bank will provide over the next five years, complements its ongoing work to build resilience in the Caribbean Region, according to a media release from CDB.

“Disaster risk management and resilience building took centre-stage again in CDB’s strategic responses to the challenges facing our BMCs,” Smith said in the CDB statement, while outlining the Bank’s 2017 performance during his Annual News Conference.

“To incentivise BMCs to invest in climate-resilient infrastructure, CDB must be able to also offer grants and other attractively priced financial resources.  But the challenges our Region faces are bigger than what CDB can handle on its own.  We have, therefore, been drawing on a combination of our own resources as well as funds intermediated through CDB by other development partners to meet this challenge,” the CDB president was quoted as saying in the bank’s press release.

In 2017, the CDB mobilised concessionary resources from development partners to support more resilient infrastructure projects throughout the Region, according to the CDB media release. Among the resources tapped was the Second Climate Action Line of Credit from the European Investment Bank totalling US$144 million, including US$24 million for emergency post-disaster rehabilitation. Last year, the Bank also announced a new US$70 million fund, through which the Government of Mexico will provide grants to boost regional infrastructure in the Bank’s BMCs.

In 2018, the United Kingdom Caribbean Infrastructure Partnership Fund, a 300 million pounds sterling programme launched two years ago, will be expanded to include an additional 28 million pounds sterling to assist in the recovery efforts in Antigua and Barbuda, and Dominica, the President announced in the statement.

“The Caribbean has had a long history of bouncing back from natural disasters and other external shocks.  So, in the events of 2017, we see immense opportunity for the BMCs to come back stronger and more resilient,” said Smith in the release, while noting that the Caribbean is the second-most vulnerable region to climate change in the world.

In highlighting the Bank’s improved performance in 2017, Smith said that CDB recorded strong growth in both approvals and disbursements according to the press release. It approved capital loans and technical assistance interventions totalling US$364 million, up 18 percent over 2016. In addition, in 2017, the Bank disbursed US$233 million – an increase of 13 percent, compared with the previous year.  This was achieved against the backdrop of increasing intensity and frequency of natural disasters, and greater vulnerability of its BMCs.

The Bank achieved a rating upgrade to AA+ from Standard & Poor’s, and an AA+ capital market rating from Fitch Ratings in 2017, and now has a unified rating across the three major rating agencies, including Moody’s Investors Service  (Aa1), the media statement said.

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Barbuda hur

Opposition parties criticise PM over remarks made in Barbuda

ST. JOHN’S, Antigua, Jan 29, CMC – Two opposition political parties have criticised what they have labelled to be the behaviour last weekend of Prime Minister Gaston Browne in which he is alleged to have made statements highly critical of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) officials and accusing the organisation of “opportunism”.

Barbuda hur
Hurricane damage in Barbuda (CMC Photo)

Both the main opposition United Progressive Party (UPP) and the minority National Alliance (DNA) said they wanted to apologise to the international agency over the remarks made by Browne.

UPP leader Harold Lovell, speaking on a radio programme here, said that an external agency erecting or displaying signage after contributing to a project in a foreign country is not unheard of but rather, it is “standard procedure.”

“I’m making assumptions here but they have to account to their principles. Their principles as well as the Chinese government at some point would want to do some sort of inspection. They would want to see where their money has been spent.”

Browne is reported to have told the UNDP officials in Barbuda over the last weekend “you can’t come and take credit for all the work that my Government did.

“It’s unacceptable. When we do all the work and then you come and put big signs on there as though you did everything that is what is happening. You got to stop it. You can’t come and give few sheets of plywood and then go and take all the credit. You have to stop it,” Browne said as he also criticised the UNDP that has had a presence on Barbuda since the island was hit by the Category 5 Hurricane Irma last September.

Browne told the UNDP officials to remove stickers, which displayed two logos, – one for the UNDP and one for the Government of China – from on a number of homes.

Official said that the stickers, were placed to indicate that the roof of the house was repaired with material from the UNDP procurement project funded by the People’s Republic of China.

“So you cannot now offer a few sheets of plywood and then put a UNDP sticker on the building to suggest that it was done by the UNDP. That is opportunism. And I have directed that every single sticker on this building be taken down. I’m not trying to be controversial. But we do not want a situation whereby the domestic population gets the impression that the government is not making any contribution and that everything is coming from abroad,” he said.

“And by the way, the UNDP is our employee. We employ them to do this. They’re not doing it for free. The people who we are to be grateful to are the donors – the Indian Government, the Chinese Government,” Browne added.

But Lovell told radio listeners that Browne’s behaviour on Friday was “pompous and obnoxious” and questioned whether the intent was to “publicly humiliate everyone.

“Even if [the prime minister] thought he had a point, it’s not the way you deal with it. Call a meeting or pull people aside and you could make your point just as strongly.”

The DNA said the party wanted to “apologise on behalf of the citizens of Antigua and Barbuda for the display by our Prime Minister to the international donor agencies that are here to help us”.

CMC/ad/ir/2018

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Maria-Irma

Caribbean American publication names hurricanes ‘Person of the Year’

NEW YORK,  CMC – A prominent Caribbean American publication here has named Hurricanes Irma and Maria, described as “the two mega, Category 5 hurricanes of 2017,” as its “Person of the Year.”

The Brooklyn-based EVERYBODY’S Magazine, owned and published by Grenadian Herman Hall, said it is the first time the 40-year old publication “selected a phenomenon as its Person of the Year.”

Maria-Irma“It can be said that the numerous and ferocious hurricanes of 2017, Usain Bolt failing to win his final track and field races, and Trinidad and Tobago knocking out the US from entering FIFA World Cup in 2018 were the major 2017 headlines in the Caribbean and within Caribbean communities overseas,” Hall said.

“Maria and Irma may well have affirmed Atilla the Hun’s classic calypso recorded in New York City in 1935, ‘Woman Is Not The Weaker Sex’ and Denise Plumber’s 1988 calypso ‘Woman is Boss’.,” he added. “Hurricane Maria and Hurricane Irma showed their male counterparts, Hurricanes Harvey, Lee, Jose and Bret, who is really the boss and the stronger sex.

“The handwriting is on the wall, in that Caribbean governments can no longer expect the US to eagerly and generously help them in time of natural disasters,” Hall continued.

In September, Hurricanes Irma and Maria ripped through the northern Caribbean, leaving a trail of destruction and ravaging 12 of 32 countries, according to reports.

Most of the islands affected included Barbuda, Dominica, Puerto Rico, St Kitts and Nevis, the Turks and Caicos, the Bahamas, the Dominican Republic and Cuba.

Hall said previous EVERYBODY’S Magazine “Person of the Year” included St. Lucian Nobel Laureate Sir Arthur Lewis; the late Caribbean American Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm, of Barbadian and Guyanese parentage; former Prime Ministers Patrick Manning, of Trinidad and Tobago, Dame Eugenia Charles, of Dominica, Tom Adams, of Barbados, and Baldwin Spencer, of Antigua and Barbuda.

Others were: The Mighty Sparrow, Jamaican-born Olympian and WNBA player Tina Charles; Grenadian Olympian Kirani James; and former West Indies cricket captain Guyanese Clive Lloyd.

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