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Ferry Service Update June 7- 29


Ferry – Jaden Sun

Information coming out of the Government Information Unit informs: “This weekend with the upcoming holidays will see significant changes that will affect both stakeholder and customers significantly.”

The result of that is that the current month will see a number of changes to the Ferry schedule, as follows:

Friday, June 7th 2019 – No Day Tour (Regular Morning and evening Svc in place)

Saturday, June 8th 2019 – Day Tour Service in place

Sunday, June 9th 2019 – No Ferry Service

Monday, June 10th 2019 – Day Tour Service In place

Tuesday, June 11th, 2019 – No Day Tour (Regular morning and evening svc in place)  

It seems early, but the release noted: “the Access Division’s Buju Trip to St. Kitts scheduled for June 29th, 2019 is cancelled due to low uptake.” 

Special note is invited to the following: From July 6, 2019 ALL Sunday services will depart Montserrat at 10:00 a.m. arriving Antigua at 11:30 a.m. The Departure times out of Antigua remains the same

The Division is reminding that check-in closes 30 minutes before departure. 

Then, “All agents and customs and immigration personnel, please advise your staff on these changes.”

Posted in International, Local, News, Regional, TOURISM, Travel0 Comments

DSC_7397 - web

Port Authority renovate to serve better and uphold international standards

by Bennette Roach

Much of the external renovation and reconstruction is well underway


Joseph O’Garro is the Manager of the Montserrat Port Authority, recently referred to as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) at the recent Port Development launch last week. He invited the media to what he said was a simple briefing exercise to alert the public, “so they can know and appreciate what was taking place in terms impact to them when they come to clear their cargo…”

That was the morning of Friday, May 24, 2019 at the Little Bay port building that houses offices and cargo storage. O’Garro briefly outlined that the works that began couple weeks ago, and was ongoing when the launch took place at the ferry terminal about 100 yards away, on Friday 17th.

He apologised for other members of the management team who he said he would love to be present at the informal briefing, but they were about getting ready to effect the relocation of the offices, as the works were well into full gear.

He introduced those present in Stephie Buffonge from the Comms and Works and Adrian Galloway of Galloway Group who had been awarded the contract to carry out the works, which had an estimated budget total of EC$890,000, which is partner-financed.

He referred to the project as a follow-up of the marine side of the new port development launch in terms of the “landside works that are being undertaken separate and apart to the project, but in support of the project itself.”

The works he said, will be about the offices, administration, Customs and customer area renovations, currently engaged in a material fashion. He explains that the layout as it stands is not very customer friendly, as he later pointed out on the external, the construction of ‘disability access’ to make the premises and the offices accessible by everyone.

“Some of the works undertaken will address the customer friendliness of the facility ensuring we are much more customer oriented. In addition, we are providing additional space for Customs as the accommodation is presently very cramped…”

He added that for the MPA itself they are expanding their own offices to “facilitated some of our expanded national responsibilities,” with regards to their maritime responsibilities that did not receive as much attention in the past as it should have.

He explained: “We will be providing for some additional office space to facilitate some of our expanded national responsibilities, our marine time responsibilities that would not have received as much attention as it should have in the recent past…just examining vessels when they come into our Port, to know that they are compliant with international standards.”

He added, “We intend to embrace a lot more of that responsibility going forward and as such we a going to provide the office space for our officers to work comfortably while they engage in those activities.”

Upgrading to facilitate the disabled, and wheel chair access

One of the initial steps is to ensure that the Port Authority and Customs are in a better position to handle the increase business that we expect and to upgrade the facility…so that we’re more customer focused.

The partner-financed sum of $890,000 is shared with the MPA providing $500,000, with GoM the balance of $390,000.

O’Garro explains the external renovations and relocations

Following a brief explanation of the drawings and the work progression by Galloway and Buffonge relating to the project, the manager now with support of some senior staff provided a tour of the quarters that will housed in temporary accommodation in the parking area where the staff will effectively meet the needs of the public. And of course, to facilitate the construction office operations for both Customs and the Port, “are being relocated to the parking lot into temporary accommodations, as of Monday.”

The project is expected to be completed within six months.

see related: https://www.themontserratreporter.com/new-port-development-launched

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, Featured, International, Local, News, Regional, TOURISM0 Comments

Culture plays important role in Region’s sustainable growth, development...

Culture plays important role in Region’s sustainable growth, development…

June 7, 2019

We have had on several previous occasions commented on the fact that culture is important and should be seriously considered when the occasion is warranted. That is expressly so in so many areas of our onward thrust for change and progress.

Consequently, we have always reminded, there is bad and good culture,

we always say. That alone is cause for common sense and seriousness when the topic is raised.

Here are a few excerpts taken from the Thirty-Sixth Meeting of the Council on Human and Social Development (COHSOD) on Thursday, June 6, 2019, at the CARICOM Headquarters in Georgetown, Guyana.

The two-day meeting was being held under the theme ‘Leveraging CARICOM’s Cultural Assets for the Sustainable Development of the Community’. The Secretary-General said that the theme further emphasised the commitment of the Region to develop its rich and diverse cultural assets.

“It has been asserted that Culture should be seen as the fourth pillar of sustainable development, as both an enabler and driver of economic and social development and environmental sustainability, which constitute the three dimensions of sustainable development,”  said Ambassador LaRocque.

In supporting his point, he said further that cultural industries in the Region had out-performed sectors such as agriculture, finance, insurance and construction in some Member States. He, however, said that there needed to be the necessary enabling environment for the creative industries to be more competitive, and to increase their contribution to employment and growth.

Speaking about the Caribbean Festival of Arts (CARIFESTA),

He noted that since CARIFESTA XI in Suriname, a business component – the cultural marketplace – was introduced where managers of venues, international festivals and performing arts, buyers and booking agents were invited to see and network with Caribbean artists.  According to him, that initiative was intended to create more opportunities for the professional development of artists and for the export of their products and services.

Dr. the Hon. Nyan Gadsby-Dolly, Minister of Community Development, Culture and the Arts, Trinidad and Tobago, who gave the feature address at the opening, was also of the view that the theme chosen for the hosting of the Meeting was very relevant, remarking that a paradigm shift was needed to create a more self-sustaining cultural economic cycle.

“We must place ourselves in the driver’s seat – charting together the course for cultural development based on already identified cultural assets – driving the way forward, instead of accepting windfall successes.”

She expressed the view that in addition to developing the creative sector, the Community’s icons and citizens who had made outstanding contributions should be honoured so as to “incentivise” excellence in the cultural sphere.

Hon. Dr. George Norton, Minister of Social Cohesion, Guyana, also posited the value of culture, saying it was time for it to be mainstreamed in the Regional agenda.

He noted that the Community’s culture was dynamic and that the cultural and creative industries would continue to evolve, even while being the key vehicles driving the development of the Region. He encouraged those present to continue to work together to achieve tangible outcomes.

See: Full CARICOM Release: https://www.themontserratreporter.com/caricom-culture-plays-important-role-in-regions-sustainable-growth-development/


Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, CARICOM, Culture, Editorial, International, Local, News, Politics, Regional0 Comments

Former Prime Minister’s funeral to be held on June 23

Former Prime Minister’s funeral to be held on June 23

by Staff Writer

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Jun. 4, CMC – The state funeral for former Prime Minister Edward Seaga is to be held on Sunday June 23.

The details of the funeral arrangements and related activities were revealed by Culture Minister Olivia Grange on Monday during a media briefing .

The funeral service will be held at the Holy Trinity Cathedral in the Corporate Area.

Grange added that the period of mourning has been declared and will be observed from June 19 to June 22.

“It means that government will not have any social activities; official activities that were scheduled will be postponed where possible; travel by government officials will be limited and the flag will be flown half-mast,” she said.

Ahead of the funeral, Seaga’s body will lie in state at several locations, however, the casket will remain closed at the request of the family.

Seaga’s remains will be interred at National Heroes’ Park.

The government is appealing to the public to also observe “a certain decorum during that period,” she said.

Seaga, Jamaica’s fifth prime minister, died at a Miami Hospital last week Tuesday, following a battle with cancer. 

He died on his 89th birthday.

Seaga, who was prime minister, from 1980 to 1989, also served as the leader of the ruling Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) from 1974 to 2005 when he retired from active politics.

Since his retirement from politics, he has been an honorary distinguished fellow at the professorial level at The University of the West Indies (UWI), and also served as chancellor of the University of Technology, Jamaica.

A lifelong sports enthusiast, Seaga was chairman of the Premier League Clubs Association, one of Jamaica’s governing football bodies, from its inception until 2010. He also served as president of the football club of his former West Kingston enclave, Tivoli Gardens.

Seaga is credited with building the financial and planning infrastructure of the country after independence, as well as developing its arts and crafts, and awareness of national heritage. As a record producer and record company owner, Seaga also played a major role in the development of the Jamaican music industry.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, CARICOM, International, Local, News, Obituaries, Politics, Regional, Travel0 Comments

Attorney found guilty of theft

Attorney found guilty of theft

by staff writer

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Jun. 4, CMC – A jury on Tuesday found well known attorney  Vonda Minerva Pile,   guilty of theft.

Pile, was accused of stealing BD$191,416.39  (One Barbados dollar=US$0.50 cents), belonging to her former client, Anstey King, between April 29, 2009 and October 26, 2010.

However, the jury said she was  not guilty of money laundering.

The 7-2 verdict was handed down after two hours of deliberations by the jury.

She has been remanded until July 16.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, Court, Crime, International, Legal, Local, News, Regional0 Comments

Barbados PM announces sale of LIAT shares

Barbados PM announces sale of LIAT shares

by staff writer

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, Jun 4, CMC – The Barbados government Tuesday night formally announced plans to sell its shares in the cash strapped regional airline, LIAT, but insisted that it was committed to regional transportation and would continue to hold minimum shares in the Antigua-based carrier.

Barbados along with Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica Grenada and St. Vincent and the Grenadines are the main shareholders of the airline that employs over 600 people and operates 491 flights weekly across 15 destinations.

Prime Minister Mia Mottley in a statement to Parliament confirmed reports that Antigua and Barbuda would be seeking to replace Barbados as the largest shareholder government by seeking to acquire the shares Bridgetown would be outing up for sale.

Prime Minister Mia Mottley speaking in Parliament (CMC Photo)

She said that Attorney General Dale Marshall would lead the negotiations.

“There is only so much that Barbados can responsibly do at this time given our current circumstances and our current position on the journey which I referred to just now,” she said, having earlier made reference to the island’s multi-million dollar agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to turn around the ailing economy.

“Therefore…notwithstanding our absolute commitment to regional air travel and notwithstanding the fact and given in fact that the studies have recommended a different module and restructuring for LIAT and given the inability of the government of Barbados to do for LIAT in the next five to 10 years what the government of Barbados did for LIAT in the last five to 10 years when we moved significantly to assume major shareholder responsibilities, we have taken the determination, a decision as a cabinet that it is time for us to step back while at the same time allowing other governments to continue with their proposals to restructure LIAT in the way which they have determined.”

Last month, Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne said he had ieceived communication from his Barbados  indicating that Bridgetown was willing to sell all but 10 per cent of its shares in the airline that serves 15 Caribbean destinations.

Antigua and Barbuda currently holds 34 per cent of the shares and if it succeeds in convincing Bridgetown to part with its LIAT shares, would have 81 per cent of the airline.

The government in a statement last month had said that “an offer was made for Antigua and Barbuda to acquire the LIAT shares owned by Barbados, through a take-over of the liability of Barbados to the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).”

The Antigua and Barbuda government chief of staff, Lionel Max Hurst, said that “there are many jobs here in Antigua and Barbuda connected to LIAT and we intend to ensure that those jobs are not lost.

“Many of the route rights that LIAT now possesses would be utilized more fully if Antigua and Barbuda gets its way,’ Hurst said.

Motrley told Parliament that Barbados would not be turning its back on regional transportation or LIAT, adding it would maintain a “minimum shareholding in LIAT should we reach an agreement with our sister governments for them to take over our shareholding with respect to the negotiations.

“We will continue to provide a minimum revenue guarantee, I shouldn’t say continue, we will provide a minimum revenue guarantee on any route that is uncommercial, unprofitable, recognising however that the majority of routes that Barbados is involved in, is in fact profitable with LIAT.

“And it is against this background Mr. Speaker, our commitment continues that such within the last few weeks the government of Barbados would have sent a further one billion dollars (One Barbados dollar=US$0.50 cents) to LIAT and would also have satisfied our commitment to the Caribbean Development Bank with respect to the re-fleeting of LIAT,” she added.

In May, St. Vincent and the Grenadines Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves said that the shareholder governments had agreed to give further consideration to a proposal by Prime Minister Browne regarding the future direction of the airline.

Gonsalves said he had hoped that the proposal from Antigua and Barbuda would be discussed by the shareholders “before the end of May is out”.

Grenada recently became the latest shareholder in LIAT and Gonsalves confirmed that St. Kitts-Nevis had responded positively to the call for raising US$5.4 million to help the airline deal with its current financial problems.

St. Lucia Prime Minister Allen Chastanet has said that Castries would not contribute any funds unless there’s a significant change to the airline’s structure.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, CARICOM, International, Local, News, OECS, Regional0 Comments

Over 70 police officers declare  assets

Over 70 police officers declare assets

by staff writer

ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada, Jun. 5, CMC –  A total of 71 Police Officers from the category of Corporals and Sergeants were among Grenadians in public service who recently filed declarations of assets with the Integrity Commission in accordance with the Integrity in Public life legislation.

The declarations made between May 8 and May 29 included  persons who requested extensions including senators, police officers and persons from Ministries and Departments.

“The filing of these Declarations were made pursuant to the Integrity in Public Life Act Number 24 of 2013, Section 28 (1) & (2), which require persons in public life, listed in the First Schedule, to file Declarations with the Integrity Commission disclosing their assets, liabilities, income and interest in relation to property,” said a  release from the Integrity Commission.

The filing of declarations is an annual exercise that commenced in March 2014.

The penalty for not filing is ence on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding EC$20,000 or twelve months imprisonment.

However, if a matter is before the court that requires the Integrity Commission to release declaration information then a Judge can issue the order.

In accordance with Section 28 (4) of the Integrity in Public Life Act,  should Declarants  fail to file their declarations, or without reasonable cause fail to furnish required documents in accordance with the act, the Commission shall publish such fact in the Gazette and at least one weekly newspaper in circulation in Grenada.

The Commission says it looks forward to the continued cooperation of persons in public life in being compliant with provisions of the Act as it continues the implementation of Grenada’s Integrity and anti-corruption System.

Posted in Court, Legal, News, Police, Regional0 Comments

Body of former prime minister returns on Sunday

Body of former prime minister returns on Sunday

by staff writer

KINGSTON, Jamaica, Jun 1, CMC – The Jamaica government says the body of the late former prime minister, Edward Seaga, is scheduled to arrive here on Sunday, as the region and international community continues to pay its respect to him.

A government statement said that Seaga’s remains, draped in the national flag, will arrive on a Caribbean Airlines flight at the Norman Manley International Airport, escorted by members of the Jamaica Defence Force (JDF).

Edward Seaga (File Photo)

It said family members, including widow Mrs. Carla Seaga and daughter Gabrielle, will be on the flight and that the body of the country’s fifth prime minister, will be received by the Government with the appropriate honour guard in place.

On hand will be Governor General, Sir Patrick Allen; Prime Minister Andrew Holness; Members of the Cabinet; Leader of the Opposition, Dr. Peter Phillips; Members of Parliament as well as other relatives of the late prime minister, who died in a United States hospital on Tuesday at the age of 89.

The government said that Seaga will be accorded a State funeral and that a period of mourning will be announced.

It said condolence books have opened at locations across the island and people overseas will have the opportunity to sign condolence books, which will be opened in all diplomatic missions.

Meanwhile, Caribbean Community (CARICOM) Secretary General Irwin LaRocque said Seaga was instrumental in reviving the integration movement as host in 1982 to the first heads of government conference after a seven year hiatus.

“The meeting served to reinvigorate the integration process,” LaRocque said, adding that Seaga made an indelible contribution to the development of his country in many spheres.

“Recognised as the longest serving member of the Jamaican Parliament, he was also the youngest ever nominated to the Legislative Council prior to Independence.  His record of service in both the Lower and Upper Houses was marked not only by his passionate oratory but also by his initiation of innovative legislative actions which resulted in significant changes in his country.

“Mr Seaga lent his considerable experience and expertise to the University of the West Indies (UWI), where, upon his retirement from public life, he was appointed as a Distinguished Fellow at the regional institution’s Mona Campus.  The Campus’ Research Institute had earlier been named in his honour.”

LaRocque said that Seaga has done his part and that Jamaica and the region “ have lost a towering figure.”

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, CARICOM, International, Local, News, Obituaries, Politics, Regional0 Comments

JUS WONDERIN

Jus Wonderin

Jus wonderin how some people do not like to promote themselves as far as their achievements and rely on others who understand their importance and relevance to the growth and progress of the island.

Jus wonderin about the coldness or the urgency to do something about electoral reform before the next general election.

Jus wonderin if becars me expect dem tap civil servants fu be loyal to the progress to dis country and do dem work loyally and propuly dat dem jus cut eye so bad dat e cud cut all four me car tyres.

Jus wonderin bout dis wan if a lek Solomon say.

Jus wonderin why so much corruption have to be around.

Jus wonderin it get so bad dat de corruption look so good can’t tell de difference wey the bad actually accepted as good.

Jus wonderin if this is not enough to warrant Impeachment in the USA — CNN’s Amanda Carpenter: “Pelosi is wrong. There was not ‘a cover up.’ There were MANY cover ups. Coverups of Russian talks. Coverups of seedy, extramarital affairs. Cover ups of Trump’s accounting. And, cover ups to hide Trump’s attempts to kill queries about any of it.”

Jus wonderin if there is any coverup in Montserrat in this decade why no one want to admit that government is continuous, be it DFID, FCO or GoM.

Jus wonderin if a tief dem mek awe we run out of goat meat dat awe use to import a Antigua even aftu awe import goats to increase dem population.

Jus wonderin who dat one choice leader going forward.

Posted in Entertainment, International, Jus Wonderin, Local, News, Regional0 Comments

Two Caribbean governments defend Citizenship by Investment Programme

Two Caribbean governments defend Citizenship by Investment Programme

by staff writer

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, May 31, CMC – The governments of Antigua and Barbuda and St. Kitts-Nevis have strongly defended their respective Citizenship by Investment Programs (CBI) that some regional countries use as a means of luring foreign investments.

Several Caribbean countries provide citizenship to those investors in return for making a significant contribution to the socio-economic development of their countries.

The Antigua and Barbuda government said it “strongly rejects” the claims being made “two convicted money launderers” that a Syrian national had been issued a passport.

The Citizenship by Investment Unit (CIU) said it “is compelled, once again, to denounce the false information” by the two individuals who have been carrying-out a campaign designed to damage the CBI in the Caribbean

“The CIU advises that it has not approved citizenship or the grant of a passport to a person by the name of Mohamad Ayad Ghazal, nor does it have any record of his applying for citizenship.

“Further, the Government of Antigua and Barbuda has recalled all passports and are issuing new e-passports, containing all the biometric data of the holders, with effect from June 1,” the CIU said, noting that its “multi-layered due diligence processes, with leading due diligence service providers and intergovernmental law enforcement agencies, remain resilient.”

Meanwhile, the St. Kitts-Nevis government said that it is disappointed that two members of the European Parliament had sought to tarnish the image of the Federation’s CBI program that has entered its 35th year.

“We are very disappointed that two members of the European Parliament should issue a letter to the EU Commission and the President of the European Council to request scrutiny of our program without a scintilla of evidence of any wrongdoing by anyone in our program,’ Prime Minister Dr. Timothy Harris said, adding that the European had relied on “misdeeds” of the former government “and the inaccurate claim that a Russian citizen of interest to law enforcement agencies was an economic citizen of St. Kitts and Nevis since 2014.

“It is not a good reflection of the reliability and seriousness of members of the European Parliament that they should seek punitive action against any entity without giving the accused the benefit of due process and natural justice and without regard for the consequences of their ill-informed letter, not just for the viability of the CBI program of St. Kitts and Nevis but also for the wider Caribbean.”

Harris said he was calling on the two European legislators “to recall their letters and to apologize to our people”.

Harris said that the CBI programme “has provided the intellectual underpinnings for subsequent programs and permutations thereof by countries such as the USA, Canada, Malta and Cyprus, all of which have their versions of CBI programmes”.

He said for a second occasion, the twin-island Federation will host the Caribbean Investment Summit during the period, June 19-21 that will allow the country to “build a network for greater cooperation and harmonization of the CBI programs in the region.

Harris said he is satisfied that the significant reforms, which have been made to the CBI have transformed it into an international leader amongst all programmes.

Posted in Business/Economy/Banking, International, News, Regional0 Comments

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