THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
MARCUS GARVEY TO BE CLEARED OF CRIMINAL CHARGES
The government of Jamaica is taking action to clear the criminal charges brought against Marcus Garvey, a person who dedicated his life to fighting for freedom. According to Olivia Grange, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, legislation is being prepared to absolve Garvey and other Jamaicans who were involved with what are being called “acts of liberation” rather than “illegal activities.’” The bill is expected to be introduced in Parliament in October 2017 and is designed to absolve Jamaica’s national heroes such as Garvey from criminal charges. The Jamaican government has tried and failed to have the United States clear Garvey, who worked to encourage people to gain knowledge of their past history, origin and culture, of criminal charges in that country.
MCKENZIE ANNOUNCES MILLIONS FOR STREET SIGNS AND FIRE STATSION
Desmond McKenzie, Jamaica’s Minister of Local Government and Community Development, announced that the government will provide $93 billion to retrofit and install street signs throughout the island and to renovate and repair Jamaica’s fire stations. He made his announcement at a town hall meeting in Christiana, Manchester, on August 23, 2017. Some $35 million will be put toward street signs, and $58 million will be allocated to the fire stations. McKenzie noted that street lights had been installed in Christiana along the new bypass; directional signs in Jamaican communities will be put up in the near future. He also said that 2,500 young people are compiling data in a street-light audit, with the information to be used to ensure all communities have adequate lighting. Manchester will receive 400 additional lights.
THIS WEEK’S TOP CARIBBEAN NEWS
FESTIVAL FOR LGBTI RIGHTS HELD IN HONDURAS
The Diversity in the Arts and Culture Festival was held at the Parque Central Amphitheater in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, to highlight talent from the nation’s lesbian, gay, trans, bisexual and intersexual community and to encourage the general public to protect the rights of this community. In May 2017, President Juan Orlando Hernandez established a ministry of human rights as part of the country’s effort to promote and defend the human rights and to enhance the government’s protection of vulnerable groups, which include the LGBTI community. Honduras has joined with the United States Agency for International Development, the European Union, and Freedom House in its human rights efforts. The festival showcased live performances from LGBTI artist along with information about human rights and sexual health.
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THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
USAIN BOLT TO OPEN 17 JAMAICAN RESTAURANTS IN THE UK
The fastest man in the world, Usain Bolt, eight-time Olympic gold medal winner, plans to open 15 new fast-food restaurants in the United Kingdom. The restaurant’s will be called “Usain Bolt’s Tracks & Records and are expected to be in 15 locations throughout the country by 2022. The plan was announced by Franjam, a franchise firm of which Bolt is a partner. The group will join with the Casal Dining Restaurant Group (CDRG), which also operates KFC and Pizza Hut eating establishments in the UK. Bolt’s first restaurant opened in Kingston in April 2011 and has expanded to a second location in Ocho Rios since then. The menu features “Burgers a la Usain” and traditional Jamaican fare including rice and peas, plantain, jerk chicken and saltfish.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
PENNICOOK RESIGNS AS TOURISM DIRECTOR
Paul Pennicook, Jamaica’s director of tourism, resigned on August 18, 2017, after fulfilling a term of three years, according to an announcement from the Jamaica Tourist Board. He returned to the board in July 2014 with a mandate to head and oversee promotion of Jamaica’s tourist industry, ensure optimum tourist arrivals, and raise the island’s share of the market. During his tenure, he focused on modernizing board operations and enhancing its partnership with other players in the industry. He made strong relationships with partners to ensure Jamaica remained a top destination in the travel industry. Pennicook was thanked by John Lynch, chairman of the Tourist Board, who expressed his appreciation for Pennicook’s service.
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
KREESHA TURNER RELIES ON HER JAMAICAN ROOTS IN FILM DEBUT
Singer-songwriter Kreesha Turner has been instrumental in helping America’s Nick Cannon make his debut as a film director. Turner cites her deep ties to Jamaica for helping her find her way into a music career. She attended high school on the island and visits relatives during the Christmas and summer vacations. With her strong connection to Jamaica, Turner was able to show Cannon the country’s real culture and her favorite things in Kingston. Cannon was intrigued and inspired by what she showed him and ultimately wrote the script for the “King of the Dancehall” film. Cannon is the director of the film and also stars as the character Tarzan, a native of Brooklyn who goes to Jamaica to work in the drug trade to fund medical treatment for his sick mother, who is played by Whoopi Goldberg. His character then gets caught up in the dancehall craze. Turner makes her acting debut as Kaydeen, a girl vying for Tarzan’s love.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
JAMAICAN WOMEN WIN THIRD 4×100 RELAY TROPHY AT DIAMOND LEAGUE
The Jamaican women’s team turned in an impressive performance at the Diamond League in Zurich, Switzerland, by winning their third consecutive 4×100-meter relay title. Elaine Thompson’s strong ancho leg of the race was instrumental in the win. The team, which comprises Christiana Williams, Jura Levey, Simone Facey, and Thompson, clocked 41.85 seconds to defeat Britain for their third trophy. Thompson received a prize of $20,000 after her second-place finish in the 200-meter final earlier in Diamond League competition.