THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
POPULATION OF JAMAICA GETTING OLDER
Jamaica had a second consecutive year of negative population growth in 2018, according to the Planning Institute’s Economic and Social Survey of Jamaica (ESSJ). The population was measured an estimated 2.7 million people in 2018. This number was attributed to the fact of a trade-off of 33,100 births and 18.900 deaths and 15,900 emigrants. The survey reported that Jamaica is now at “the advanced stage of demographic transition.” Its median age is 31 years. The impact of an aging population can be seen in a declining child population of those between zero and 14 years of age, a relatively big working-age population, and growth in the dependent elderly population, or those over age 65. The survey also noted that urbanization plays a large role in the distribution of the population.”
JAMAICA TO HAVE THIRD POLITICAL PARTY; UIC APPLIES FOR REGISTRATION
If the United Independents’ Congress (UIC) application for registration goes as planned, Jamaica will have a third political party participating in the next general election, which is scheduled for 2021. The Electoral Commission of Jamaica (ECJ) has confirmed the UIC has submitted its application. If it is successful, the UIC will become Jamaica’s third registered political party, joining the current Jamaica Labor Party and the Opposition People’s National Party. The application was submitted in February 2019. The UIC launched in 2015 by founder and President Joseph Patterson, who ran in the February 25, 2016 Parliamentary Election seeking to represent St Elizabeth North Eastern.
THIS WEEK’S TOP CARIBBEAN NEWS
REGIONAL PRIVATE SECTOR, LABOR REPRESENTATIVES MEET CARICOM HEADS
In St. Lucia, representatives of regional private sector entities and labor interests met with the leaders of CARICOM in an effort to promote the CARICOM Single Market and Economy (CSME). This allows for the free movement of goods, services, and labor across the borders of its member nations. According to Irwin LaRocque, Secretary General of CARICOM, the meeting between these interest parties “went very well.” The private sector and the Caribbean Congress of Labor (CCL) were both in attendance.
THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
CELEBRATION FOR MISS LOU’S 100TH ANNIVERSARY TO BE HELD IN FLORIDA
The ““Miss Lou Full Hundred,” celebration to mark the 100th anniversary of Jamaican folklorist, writer, and activist Dr. Louise Bennett-Coverley, known as “Miss Lou,” will be held in Florida under the auspices of the Consul General of Jamaica, Oliver Mair. The event will launch the Royal Palm Beach Community High School on September 6,, 2019. The next day, it will move to the Coral Springs Center for the Arts. It will feature a rare appearance in Florida of the award-winning Jamaican Folk Singers, Labrish with “Dat Bumpy Head Gal”, and Joan Andrea Hutchinson.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS
RECORD LEVEL OF ECONOMIC ACTIVITY SEEN IN JAMAICA, SAYS CLARKE
Jamaican Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Dr. Nigel Clarke, reports that the nation is seeing an “unprecedented” level of economic activity. He cited Jamaica’s 17 consecutive quarters of growth as proof. He added that the unemployment rate in the country is also at a historic low. Clarke made his remarks during an address at the fundraiser for the East Central St. James Education Fund in Montego Bay.
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS & ENTERTAIINMENT NEWS
SINGING SENSATION KOFFEE SLATED TO APPEAR AT REGGAE SUMFEST
Koffee, the star singer known for her recording “Toast,” is expected to join the roster of performers at the 2019 staging of Reggae Sumfest in Montego Bay, St. James. Koffee, 19, is scheduled to perform on the first night of the festival. The news of her participation was first announced during a radio interview in June. Joe Bogdanovich, the festival’s organizer, has confirmed the appearance. Other performers scheduled for Sumfest include Etana and Jah9, queen of the stage Spice, and Sumfest newbies Dovey Magnum and Shauna Controlla.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
JAMAICAN 2019 PAN AM GAMES TEAM TO FEATURE THOMSPON, FRASER-PRYCE
The Jamaican team that will compete at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru, will be headed by Olympians Elaine Thompson and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce. The Games are scheduled to run from July 26 through August 11, 2019. The event will provide an opportunity for athletes to prepare themselves for the International Association of Athletics Federation (IAAF) World Championships in Doha. Thompson will compete in the women’s 100 and 200 meter events. Fraser-Pryce may bring a challenge to Thompson in the 100-meters as she won a gold medal in the event at the 2012 Olympics in London.