THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
LEADER OF MAROONS CALLS FOR STATE TO RATIFY SOVEREIGNTY
Maroon Colonel Rodolph Pink of the Scott’s Hall Maroon Town in St Mary has called for the Jamaican government to ratify the sovereignty of the Maroon community, which was won from the British nearly 300 years ago. The Maroon Peace Treaty was signed in 1738 between the Maroons and the British government. Despite the treaty, the Maroons still do not enjoy autonomy over their land and villages. Since signing the treaty, the Maroons have respected and relied upon it as a basis for defining relations between their community and Jamaica’s government.
PRIME MINISTER OF JAMAICA CALLS FOR CHURCH SUPPORT TO FIGHT CRIME
Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness has called upon churches to support his government’s efforts to reduce the rates of crime and violence in the country. In remarks to the 15th annual Heal the Family, Heal the Nation service at National Arena in Kingston, Holness was optimistic about Jamaica in 2020, stating that the government is working on a comprehensive approach to the crime fight, using more technology as well as gaining more public support. He noted the government wants to address crime and violence in the country without violating anyone’s human rights. The Prime Minister also invited Opposition Leader Dr. Peter Phillips on the event stage for a symbolic handshake of agreement on peace for Jamaica.
THIS WEEK’S TOP CARIBBEAN NEWS
EARTHQUAKES IN PUERTO RICO DEVASTATE ISLAND STILL RECOVERING FROM HURRICANE DAMAGE
Puerto Rico suffered two large earthquakes that compounded the island nation’s difficulties stemming from historic hurricane damage experienced several years earlier. The country still awaits billions of dollars in aid from the United States that was allocated at the time of the hurricanes. The funds totaled $18 billion in federal monies for the US territory. The nation’s electric grid has never recovered from the hurricane damage, and with the recent earthquakes, half of the population remains without electric power. The funds were under a US Congress mandate to be disperse by the fall of 2019. Aftershocks from the 6.4 quake occurring on January 7, 2020, continued as Puerto Rico waited for assistance.
THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
BRITISH-JAMAICAN SINGER WINS BBC “SOUND OF 2020” POLL
The British-Jamaica soul singer Celeste Waite, 25, was selected as the BBC “Sound of 2020” in the network’s yearly poll, which is designed to identify the best new musical acts. Her selection comes after a win of the Rising Star award in December of 2019. Celeste started writing songs and performing during her teen years. She was discovered at age 16 after posting her first song on the internet. She was signed by Lily Allen’s label Bank Holiday Records and released her first EP “Milk & Honey” in 2017.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS
BLUE MOUNTAIN COFFEE PROVIDED TO CRUISE SHIP PASSENGERS
A new Jamaican Tourism Ministry initiative will provide the passengers of arriving cruise ships at Jamaica’s main port with cups of Jamaica Blue Mountain coffee. According to Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett, passengers on the Norwegian Bliss cruise ship arriving in Ocho Rios were the first to benefit from the new marketing program.
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
KOFFEE CONFIRMED AS PERFORMER DURING US SUPER BOWL WEEKEND FESTIVITIES
Jamaica’s star reggae singer Koffee will be one of the performers participating during the weekend of festivities preceding the Super Bowl game on February 2, 2020. The weekend will begin on January 31, 2020, and last through February 1, 2020. Koffee will join fellow Jamaicans Squash and Shenseesa at the event, along with numerous international stars like Cardi B and DJ Khaled. Shakira and Jennifer Lopez are slated to headline the famous half-time show at the legendary football game in the US.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
JAMAICA OLYMPIC ASSOCIATION SUPPORTS PATTERSON
The Olympic bid from Shahieda Patterson has been supported by the Jamaica Olympic Association and the Jamaica Rowing Federation. The organizations hope that Patterson will provide Jamaica with a historic performance at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in the sport of rowing. Patterson is participating in a three-months-long training program in Austin, Texas, before moving into the Olympic qualifications later in 2020 in Brazil.