THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN NEWS STORIES
MOST APPLICATIONS FOR JAMAICAN CITIZENSHIP COME FROM U.S., CUBA, NIGERIA
According to Carol Hammond, the director of citizenship at Jamaica’s Passport Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA), the majority of citizenship applications come from the United States, Cuba, and Nigeria. Hammond shared this fact during an address to journalists and editors of the Jamaica Observer at the paper’s headquarters in St. Andrew. About 3,350 applications for Jamaican citizenship were received in 2017, with most of them from people claiming citizenship by descent who are currently nationals from Cuba, Britain, Canada, Bahamas, Cayman Islands, and the Netherlands, Hammond noted. Among non-descendant applicants for Jamaican citizenship, the highest number come from Cuba, with Americans and Nigerians taking second and third-highest numbers, respectively.
HOLNESS COMMENTS ON DISCUSSIONS WITH U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE
During his visit to Jamaica, United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson met with Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness to discuss a range of issues of importance to both countries. According to Holness, they covered strengthening security to battle transnational organized crime; enhancing the economic partnership between the US and Jamaica; and explored opportunities for increased US-CARICOM engagement. These included; energy security, economic vulnerability of Middle Income Countries, banking issues; and the situation in Venezuela. Secretary Tillerson emphasized his government’s interest in imposing sanctions on Venezuela, At the end of their meeting, Holness said they agreed that Venezuela’s government must act to further the best interests of its people and should ensure free presidential elections.
THIS WEEK’S TOP CARIBBEAN NEWS STORIES
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC TO USE UNDERWATER CABLE TO LINK WITH REGIONAL NATIONS
Deep Blue Cable Ltd., an international telecommunications firm, and its local partner Northern Caribbean Fiber (NC Fiver), announced a two-year plan to connect the Dominican Republic with Jamaica and other nations in the region with a submerged telecom cable. The project was presented to Jose Dei Castillo, president of the Dominican Telecom Institute. The cable will connect some 12 countries, including Puerto Rico, Haiti, and Jamaica with the Dominican Republic. The route of the cable will create a ring of eight pairs of fiber that will provide a six-terabit-per-second capacity. The first phase of the project will occur in Puerto Plata province, with a second phase to occur in Santo Domingo.
THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS STORIES
DIASPORA IN UNITED KINGDOM RAISES $5 MILLION FOR ADOPT-A-CLINIC PROGRAM
Some $5 million has been raised by the Jamaican Diaspora in the United Kingdom for the Adopt-A-Clinic initiative of the island’s Ministry of Health. Dr. Christopher Tufton, Portfolio Minister, received the funds at an event hosted by the Jamaican High Commission in London. The initiative represents one of the UK legacy projects of Jamaica 55, which were undertaken by the High Commission. The funds came from two events organized by the High Commission as well: the Jamaica 55 Independence Church Service and the Jamaica 55 Gala Dinner and Dance. Tufton expressed his thanks to the UK Diaspora community for supporting the project.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS STORIES
SUBWAY JAMAICA EXPANDS
Subway Jamaica Limited opened its fourth store in December 2017 in Portmore. According to Donovan Walker, the franchise operator, says this represents the beginning of an expansion program for the sandwich chain. New franchises will be on sale as part of the expansion. The chain wants to add up to 24 more shops via the recruitment effort begun in 2018. This would be a seven-fold growth rate Subway Jamaica. In 2016, the chain named development agents for Jamaica with a mandate to open new shops throughout the country.
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS AND ENTERTAINMENT NEWS STORIES
FANS CELEBRATE BOB MARLEY’S LIFE AT MUSEUM
Fans or the late reggae icon Bob Marley celebrated the 73rd anniversary of his birth with a concert called “SoulRebel73” at the Bob Marley Museum. People from all over the world were in attendance at the celebration as the event was streamed live on YouTube. The concert featured performances of Marley songs by his son Ziggy Marley, as well as other singing groups. Marley was born on February 6, 1945, and is given credit for making reggae music popular throughout the world. He continues to be an international symbol of freedom, love, and unity, and of Jamaican identify and culture.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS STORIES
$1.5 MILLION GIVEN TO NATIONAL BASKETBALL LEAGUE
The Sports Development Foundation (SDF) provided $1.5 million in funding to the 2018 staging of the National Basketball League (NBL). The event will being with a double-header at National Arena on Saturday, February 10, 2018. The NBL is Jamaica’s premier basketball competition and is making its return after a five-year hiatus. Interim president of the Jamaica Basketball Association Calvin Martin says he is delighted at the league’s return. He also noted that he expects the league to be highly competitive and of high quality, which will contribute to its popularity among spectators and players like.