JAMAICA NEWSWEEKLY For the week ending December 20th, 2013 (Jamaica)

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JAMAICA NEWSWEEKLY For the week ending December 20th, 2013

Published Dec 20, 2013

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THIS WEEK”S SUMMARY
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JAMAICA RECEIVES $130 MILLION LOAN FROM WORLD BANK—12/14/13
The Board of Directors of the World Bank has given its approval to a $130 million development policy loan to Jamaica. The loan is designed to encourage "economic stability, debt sustainability, and improve competitiveness" in the country, according to the Bank's statement.

MONTEGO BAY SUFFERS WAVE OF CRIMINALITY—12/15/13
Residents in Montego Bay, St. James, live in fear as a new wave of crime takes over their city. Twelve individuals have been killed in separate incidents that include a triple murder and two double murders in less than a week. Four people were murdered during gangland-style incidents in North Gully and Norwood, evoking memories of 2006 when the Stonecrusher gang operated in the area.

POTENTIAL CANCER-FIGHTING AGENT DISCOVERED—12/16/13
The cola nut, also called the Jamaican bissy, is known in Jamaica to be a remedy for poisoning, but it may have another use in the battle against cancer. Researchers have found there is significant anti-cancer potential in an extract from the bissy. The research is headed by Dr. Henry Lowe, founder and executive chair of the Bio-Tech Research and Development Institute.

EMPLOYERS NOTE GAP IN WORKERS' SKILLS—12/17/13
Over 40 percent of the job vacancies in Jamaica are in the managerial or technical sectors, and employers report problems finding skilled workers to fill these jobs, according to a report from the nation's Ministry of Labor and Social Security. Eight percent of employers surveyed recruited workers from overseas, and 46 percent said they could not find suitable workers locally.

THWAITES DISMISSES CALL FOR SCHOOLS TO USE JAMAICAN LANGUAGE—12/18/13
Ronald Thwaites, Jamaica's Minister of Education, rebutted an effort from a parliamentarian that suggested the Jamaican language be used in the formal school system in order to raise students' competencies. Dr. Ken Baugh said that there is no reason for Jamaicans to struggle to speak Standard English. Baugh says that children who enter the school system do not understand this English because it is not their natural language.

JAMAICAN GIVEN GOOD MARKS BY IMF—12/19/13
Jamaica passed the second test under a four-year fund facility provided by the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The IMF's Executive Board approved a disbursement of US$8 million to Jamaica's government. The second review of the nation's economic performance was completed by the board, and it confirmed that Jamaica has met all quantitative performance targets in September 2013.

CLARENDON ENCOURAGED TO READY ITSELF FOR COMING OPPORTUNITIES—12/20/13
The general manager of the Jamaica National Building Society, Earl Jarrett, is urging residents of Clarendon to get ready for more business opportunities linked to the global logistics hub being established in the parish. The hub, if it goes forward, will create a link between the Goat Islands and Clarendon and St. Catherine.

BUSINESS TAX REFORM LAW MOST SIGNIFICANT IN 30 YEARS—12/20/13
The Fiscal Incentives (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act is the most significant tax reform enacted in 30 years. It is expected to facilitate a better climate for investment, especially by reducing burdensome red tape, and having a positive impact on competitiveness. The law will go into effect on January 1, 2014.

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JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
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ONTARIO POLICE ACCUSED OF RACIAL PROFILING OF MIGRANT WORKERS—12/14/13
According to Justicia for Migrant Workers, approximately 100 black men were asked to submit to DNA tests in a case of sexual assault, despite the fact that they did not match the suspect's identity. The group, which acts as an advocate for the rights of migrant workers, believes the Ontario Provincial Police (OPP) was racially profiling the Caribbean migrants.

NEW YORK THE SITE FOR "OLE TIME GRAND MARKET"—12/15/13
Jamaicans yearning for home at Christmas has prompted Andrew Clarke, who works Jamaican music and theater in New York City, to create a holiday event in Queens, which is meant to revive and celebrate traditional Jamaican holiday activities. The Ole Time Grand Market will present Christmas music, Jonkanoo parades, cultural exhibits, films, storytelling, bun-eating and sorrel-drinking contests, and various arts and crafts vendors.

TESSANE CHIN'S PERFORMANCES UNITING DIASPORA—12/17/13
The performances of Jamaican Tessanne Chin on the television vocal competition show "The Voice" in the United States has brought together members of the Jamaican Diaspora living in the U.S. According to Kayan Mitchell, a Jamaican living in Florida, the show was not watched on a regular basis until Tessanne was part of it. Her performances have enhanced Jamaican pride and allowed members of the Diaspora to feel united. Jamaicans in the U.S. have been actively involved in voting for Chin in each week of the competition.

JAMAICAN HIGH COMMISSION IN LONDON HOSTS FIRST CITIZENSHIP EVENT—12/19/13
In London, the Jamaican High Commission hosted its first ever ceremony designed to recognize individuals of Jamaican heritage who were born in the United Kingdom and took Jamaican citizenship. Aloun Ndombet-Assamba, the High Commissioner to the UK, congratulated the new citizens, and said the ceremony was meant to acknowledge the people's choice to confirm their citizenship in Jamaica.


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CARIBBEAN NEWS SUMMARY provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
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TRAVEL WARNING ISSUED FOR ST. MARTIN DUE TO CHIKUNGUNYA—12/14/13
 
FORMER JUNIOR TABLE TENNIS CHAMPION DIES—12/15/13
 
HIGH BARBADOS DEBT PROMPTS FIRINGS—12/16/13
 
CUBA WILL JOIN CARIBBEAN BASEBALL SERIES AS A GUEST—12/17/13
 
UK GOVERNMENT NOT LIKELY TO ADJUST ADP TO CARIBBEAN—12/18/13
 
DREDGING IN TRINIDAD BLAMED FOR COOKING GAS SHORTAGE—12/19/13

 

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BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
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HARMONY HALL LOOKING FOR NEW OWNER—12/14/13
The Jamaican government declared Harmony Hall Art Gallery in St. Mary to be a national monument ten years ago, and the Jamaican National Heritage Trust said that the public interest was served by preserving the historic site for its traditional architectural and archaeological value. The owner and founder of gallery agrees, but after managing the site for 32 years, Annabella Proudlock, 71, believes it is time to hand it over to someone younger. Harmony Hall was originally a pimento and lime estate constructed by the Methodist Church in the late 1850s. The gallery showcases the work of Jamaican artists.

TOURIST ORGANIZATION WANTS TO PROMOTE CARIBBEAN AS SINGLE DESTINATION—12/17/13
The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO), which is based in Barbados, has called for promoting the region as a single tourist destination. According to Beverly Nicholson Doty, chair of the CTO, the countries in the Caribbean should commit themselves to promoting the region as a single destination in 2014 and also commit a percentage of their yearly tourism budgets toward marketing the Caribbean brand.

$2 MILLION MAINTENANCE, OPTIMIZATION OF POWER STATION COMPLETed—12/18/13
The Wood Group GTS finished the major maintenance and gas turbine optimization of the Bogue Power Plant in Montego Bay. The improvements o the Jamaica Public Service Company (JPS) plant cost were completed at a cost of $2 million. The renovations were designed to improve the power output of the plant and enhance its efficiency.

U.S. COAL FIRM FINED BY COLOMBIA FOR COAL DUMP IN CARIBBEAN—12/19/13
The environmental authority of Colombia fined Drummond, the United States coal corporation, $3.5 million for its dumping of over 2,000 tons of coal in the Caribbean Sea near Santa Maria. Drummond was also required to clean up the waters and beaches impacted by it illegal coal dump. This was the first sanction of its kind to be imposed. Drummond was given a year to extract all the dumped coal from the sea floor and clean the affected beaches.

 

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Caribbean Science and Technology News provided by Caribbeantopnews.com
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ENERGY FORUM TARGETS INFORMATION MANAGEMENT—12/14/13
 
SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY EDUCATION WORKSHOP URGES ECONOMIC DIVERSITY—12/17/13
 
NETCLUES, TRENDING INFO BECOME SALES PARTNERS—12/18/13
 
JAMAICANS DOMINATED VOCATIONAL SUBJECT RANKINGS IN CARIBBEAN—12/20/13

 

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ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT  
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REGGAE SHOULD FLOURISH, SAYS SUPER CAT—12/15/13
Super Cat, the veteran Jamaican dancehall artiste, wants fans of Jamaica's music to have a more wholesome understanding of the genre. He believes that dancehall is a place, while the music produced by Jamaican artistes is reggae. According to the deejay, Jamaicans are not calling the genre by the correct name and so are "watering down" its force. He emphasized the importance of teaching youth in the music industry about the value of publishing to their careers.

JAMAICAN WINS AT CARIBBEAN SCHOOLS DRAMA FESTIVAL—12/16/13
Jamaica's production of "Wi Love Wi Self" received the Best Overall Performance award at the Caribbean Schools Drama Festival in Barbados. Eleven students from local Jamaican high schools participated in the event, which drew competitors from Bermuda, Barbados, Guyana, St. Vincent, and Trinidad and Tobago, among others. Jamaica's team also won awards for Best Ensemble Acting, Most Creative Presentation, and Best Set Design.

CARIBBEAN ARTISTS BASED IN MIAMI SHOWCASED AT EXHIBIAT—12/17/13
An exhibit in the Little Haiti area of Miami, Florida, is focusing on the work of Caribbean artists who are based in the South Florida region. Their works are on display at the Little Haiti Cultural Center, which showcases artists with roots in Cuba, Haiti, Puerto Rico, and Jamaica, among others.

TESSANE CHIN WINS ON "THE VOICE"—12/18/13
Jamaican singer Tessanne Chin, who won the attention of the audience and all the coaches on the United States television competition "The Voice" went the distance and won the top prize. She will be awarded US$100,000 and a record contract with Universal Music. All four of the coaches wanted her on their teams from the very start, but she selected Adam Levin of Maroon 5, and their efforts were rewarded with the top prize.

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SPORTS
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BOLT MAKES APPEARANCE AT EXPEDIA EVENT—12/14/13
Usain Bolt, Jamaica's sprint superstar and Olympic champion, made a brief and unusual appearance at the opening of an online travel agency conference sponsored by Expedia Inc. in Los Vegas. His appearance was part of a slide show projected on a screen in the Coliseum. A still clip of his performances at the 2008 Olympics was shown to demonstrate Expedia's position as a market leader in the online travel industry.

SHERONE SIMPSON LIKES NEW TRAINING CAMP—12/15/13
Jamaica's 100-meter Olympic silver medalist Sherone Simpson is happy with her new Florida training camp. She is now being coached by Loren Seagrave. Simpson was one of five athletes from Jamaica who receive negative results from drug tests conducted in June 2013. Her hearing on the matter is scheduled for January 2014.

SAMUELS BANNED FROM BOWLING QUICKER DELIVERIES—12/16/13
The International Cricket Council (ICC) has prohibited Jamaica's Marlon Samuels, a part-time off spinner for the West Indies, from bowling quicker deliveries in international cricket. Shane Shillingford, his teammate, has been suspending from bowling in international competition, after they were reported for suspicious action in November 2013 during the second Test versus India in Mumbai.

PARALYMPIAN GRANT RECEIVES KEY TO THE CITY—12/17/13
Sylvia Grant, who became one of the most decorated athletes in Jamaica in spite of being unable to walk, received the keys to the City of Kingston from Mayor Angela Brown Burke, in recognition of her achievements. Grant was abandoned by her parents at birth because of a physical disability, but she went on to become the most decorate Jamaican female Paralympian in history. She has won 50 medals and trophies for javelin and discus throw over nearly 25 years.

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DEVOTIONAL
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Joy to the World


The night was probably quiet as the sheep rested in the field, the shepherds keeping vigilant watch over them and perhaps trading stories they had repeated many times before. Just another night in the life of a shepherd, or so they thought. Unknown to them, this was no ordinary night for while they engaged in the ordinary, the extra-ordinary was taking place.

Luke tells us that as the shepherds kept their watch, "Lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men" (2:9-14, KJV).

It was a celebration like none other. A multitude of heavenly host, a chorus of voices giving glory to God and announcing His peace and good will toward men. As the angels returned to heaven (v.15) we can only imagine the rejoicing as millions of their counterparts joined in the celebration, no doubt watching in awe as the related events unfolded on earth. The world did not know it then but in the birth of the little boy, joy had come into the world; a joy that was not known before and one that has not been known since. Through Him the light had come and the glory of the LORD had risen upon us (Isaiah 60:1). God had physically introduced Himself to the world in the person of His son Jesus.

It has been over thousand years since and we are still celebrating God's most precious gift to the world. It is true that for far too many the reason for the season is buried under the avalanche of commerce, but for those of us who have accepted Jesus as Lord, we are forever grateful that God so loved the world that He gave us His only begotten Son. As we open our gifts this Christmas, let us remember the most treasured of gifts - JESUS. He is the reason for the season.

 

CEW

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CREDITS/SOURCES
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The weekly news is compilation of new articles from top Caribbean and Jamaican news sources.

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