THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
JAMAICAN MINISTER OF AGRICULTURE AND FISHERIES CONTINUES TO DEFEND NATION’S WATERS
Pearnel Charles Jr., Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries in Jamaica praised the efforts of the Jamaica Defense Force in the 2nd District and the National Fisheries Authority in defending Jamaican waters against what he described as an imminent threat of an unmarked vessel involved in illegal fishing activities on December 11, 2022, at Pedro Bank. According to Charles, the unregistered and unmarked fishing vessel was intercepted by the JDF Coast Guard, and despite the hostility of the vessel’s personnel, the JDF apprehended 131 crew, took them into custody, and transported them to the JDF Coast Guard Base in Port Royal. Charles noted that significant losses have been incurred by the island’s most profitable fisheries – those harvesting conch and lobster – from illegal activities in 2022.
JAMAICA’S COOPERATION WITH UNITED STATES, EUROPEAN UNION RECOGNIZED BY TRADE AND TECHNOLOGY COUNCIL
Jamaica was one of just two nations in the world recognized by the US-EU Trade and Technology Council (TTC) on December 5, 2022, for its cooperation with the United States and the European Union in regard to digital connectivity. Jamaica and Kenya received commendations from the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and the EU Commission’s executive vice president Margrethe Vestegar for their cooperation in developing resilient and security digital connective and information/communication technology services (ICTS) supply chains from trusted suppliers. The EU will connect over 1,000 public schools and children’s homes in Jamaica to inclusive and secure internet services with the cooperation of Jamaica’s government. The program is also designed to enhance the digital competency of teachers and support the use of secure internet services by micro-, small, and midsized enterprises (MSMEs).
THIS WEEK’S TOP CARIBBEAN NEWS
PROJECT IN ST. LUCIA ONE OF 10 RECOGNIZED BY U.N. FOR RESTORING UNIQUE ECOSYSTEMS
A St. Lucia project designed to scale up restoration of the unique ecosystems of ocean reefs has been recognized by the United Nations (UN). The UN stated that the project, “Small Island Developing States Restoration Drive,” was focused on three developing small island states: St. Lucia, Vanuatu, and Comoros. The goals of the project include reducing pressures on coral reefs so there can be recovery of fish stocks. The restoration of ecosystems addresses seagrass beds, mangroves, and forests. The program also seeks to increase the policy input of island nations who face rising sea levels and stronger storms resulting from climate change. Part of the UN’s World Restoration Flagship projects, the St. Lucia plan is also designed to restore millions of jobs.
THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
JAMAICAN PRIME MINISTER MEETS WITH JAMAICAN DIASPORA INDIVIDUALS LIVING IN U.S.
During his official visit to Washington DC, Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness spoke with several Jamaicans living in the Diaspora in the United States. Holness believes it is important for individuals in the Jamaican Diaspora to maintain close ties to the home island and use their resources to support policy and initiatives that are changing lives in Jamaica. The meeting was attended by Professor Donald Harris, Professor of Economics, Emeritus, Stanford University, the Governor-elect of Maryland Wes Moore, who is of Jamaican heritage and his wife Dawn Moore, Judge Tanya Chuktan, and Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke, among others. Holness thanks Jamaica’s Ambassador to the US Audrey Marks for arranging the opportunity to meet with Diaspora individuals.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS
NONSTOP AIRLINE SERVICE FROM HARTFORD’S BRADLEY INTERNATIONAL TO JAMAICA BEGINS
After a 15-year effort by the Caribbean community in Hartford, Connecticut, the budget airline carrier Spirit Airlines will launch its nonstop service from Bradley International Airport to Jamaica. According to Edmund Bartlett, Jamaica’s Minister of Tourism, Connecticut is an important market for Jamaican tourism, and the launch of the new airline service supports the continuing recovery of Jamaica’s tourism industry. It also gives travelers another convenient choice for journeying to the island nation. The service will operate all year, four times per week. Kevin A. Dillon, executive director of the Connecticut Airport Authority, said the agency was proud to offer convenient connections for the state’s “strong Jamaican population, their friends, and their relative.”
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
JAMAICAN CLASSIC “THE HARDER THEY COME” TO BE STAGED AS MUSICAL
The 1972 classic Jamaican film, “The Harder They Come,” which features the iconic music of Jimmy Cliff, is being adapted into a musical product for the stage. Before the film, few people had even hear of reggae, but the dramatic story altered this situation overnight. The musical adaptation is going into production as the film approaches its 50-year anniversary. The new production has the support by Justine Henzell, the daughter of the film’s director Perry Henzell and a filmmaker herself. The adaptation is being co-directed by Sergio Trujillo and Tony Taccone. It was written by Suzan-Lori Park, and starring as the anti-hero Ivan is Natey Jones, who also played Peter Tosh in “Get Up, Stand Up,” the Bob Marley jukebox musical. Cliff’s musical score remains the center of the production, which will keep the classics including “Sitting in Limbo,” You Can Get It If You Really Want,” and “The Harder They Come.” It will also include songs written by Cliff later on.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
NICOLA GUY WINS FIRST-EVER NATIONAL RIFLE-SHOOTING TITLE
Nicola Guy claims her first national full bore/target rifle shooting title at the Jamaica Rifle Association National Championship at St. Catherine’s Jamaica Defense Force Twickenham Park Range. She earned 145.10 points on opening day to finish just behind Denis Lee, the 2019 champion. On the second day, Guy shot 49.5 of 50 points in the first event, which involved 10 shots as 50 yards. Her consistently excellent performance, particularly when she shot 61.3 of 75 points at 900 yards, allowed her to claim the title.