THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
JAMAICAN PILOT HELD IN QATAR PRISON COMING HOME—08/17/15
According to Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s Opposition spokesperson on Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, Paul Stephens, the Jamaican pilot held in a Qatari prison since 2011, is on his way home. Stephens was to travel through London in the United Kingdom and Miami, Florida, before landing in Jamaica. Stephens had been imprisoned for nearly three years for a charge of “mistrust of a minor.” He was one of several pilots from Jamaica who went to Qatar in 2010 following the merger of Air Jamaica and Caribbean Airlines.
LUMSDEN, MAROON LEADER, DEAD AT 73—08/19/15
Frank Lumsden, who was named “colonel” of the Windward Maroon community in Charles Town in 2005, has died. He was 73 years old. Before being elected as leader of the community, he worked in Chicago, Illinois, as a commodities broker. He then moved back to the home island and was instrumental in reviving the Maroon culture. He worked to preserve the traditions of the Maroons through heritage tourism and cultural conferences. He also encouraged the creation of cottage industries in the community to help retain its younger people. Lumsden was a descendant of the escaped slaves known as Maroons who took their freedom in the 18th century by raiding planters’ estates and retreating to the forest where they used guerrilla warfare to overcome their enemies.
167 JAMAICANS TO RECEIVE NATIONAL HONORS ON HEROES DAY—08/20/15
Jamaica will recognize167 individuals for their contributions to the country on National Heroes Day on October 10, 2015. Among those to receive the Order of Jamaica (OJ) are Derrick Heaven, former New York Consul General, Phillip Paulwell and Wykeham McNeill, John Junor, former Senator Trevor Munroe, Ambassador Stephen Vasciannie and Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange. Ronald ‘Ronnie’ Stafford Burke, co-founder of Reggae Sunsplash, will receive the Order of Distinction in the rank of officer class.
THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
JAMAICAN WINS HISTORIC VICTORY IN BERMUDA PAROLE CASE—08/17/15
Leighton Griffiths, a Jamaican convicted in 2007 on charges of importing 480 grams of cocaine, achieved a major victory in the Supreme Court of Bermuda after claiming his constitutional rights were violated as he was not permitted to apply for parole after serving one-third of his 12-year jail sentence. Griffiths brought a legal action in 2015 claiming, that as a foreigner, he was not provided the opportunity to be released after serving the requisite amount of time, despite the fact that he was qualified for the early release. Griffiths also claimed that come provisions of the Prison Act breached portions of Bermuda’s Constitution. The court in Bermuda ruled in his favor, clearing the way for him to be returned to Jamaica, Jamaica has not yet agreed to accept prisoners who have been released on license, as in the case of Griffiths.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS SUMMARY
LIME AND FLOW RANKED AS MORE “SOCIALLY DEVOTED” TELECOMS THAN DIGICEL—08/16/15
Socialbakers, a social media monitoring company, has ranked Lime Jamaica and Flow Jamaica as being more socially devoted telecommunications firms than Digicel in 2015. The ranking has occurred within an environment marked with an increased demand for firms to leverage social media to advance market share. LIME and Flow are in the process of merging but were ranked separately. According to Socialbakers, it a firm responds to 65 percent of its audience’s questions on Facebook or Twitter it qualifies as “socially devoted.”
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
JAMAICA TO BUILD SPORTS MUSEUM—08/20/15
The Jamaican government has given its approval to the building of a sports museum in Kingston near the National Stadium. According to Neita Headley, Sports Minister, over $39 million has been allocated in the government’s budget for 2015 to take on the preliminary work required for the project. The museum is meant to honor the achievements of Jamaican athletes and represents part of a major program designed to develop a sporting village at the National Stadium Complex.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
WRIGHT WARNS ATHLETES TO EXPECT MORE DRUG TESTING AT WORLDS—08/18/15
Dr. Paul Wright, a former member of the Jamaica Anti-Doping Commission (JADCO) board, says that Jamaica’s athletes should be prepared for more drug testing at the IAAF World Champions. He believes they should ask for advice from the Jamaican medical staff if they are in doubt about any situation, and they should be careful about what they consume. Wright does not expect many doping violations at the championships in Beijing, China, however, since those competing there know far in advance the dates of the competitions and when drug tests are scheduled.