THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
JAMAICAN GOVERNMENT COMMITS TO PROTECTING COASTLINE IN MONTEGO BAY
Prime Minister of Jamaica Andrew Holness said his government has committed to protecting the coastline in Montego Bay under the continuing Montego Bay Waterfront Rehabilitation Project. The project ensures that measures are being implemented to reduce the loss of beachfront acreage to erosion and to protect marine ecosystems and coastal resources in the Montego Bay Waterfront. Holness added that the government is investing an additional $328 million in 2021 to build more groynes and protective structures. Holness reiterated the commitment to coastline protection at the official opening of Harmony Beach Park in Montego Bay, a project that began in April of 2019 and, with an extension, will be completed in March of 2023.
JAMAICA TO STRENGTHEN TIES TO AFRICA
Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness, noting the significant opportunities for trade, investment, and tourism, is promoting stronger ties between Jamaica and Africa. According to Holness, connectivity represents the greatest link between the Caribbean and the continent. Holness made his remarks during an Africa Day seminar at which he focused on the major agreements made between the Republic of South Africa and Jamaica. These include direct flights from Nigeria to Kingston, he said, and added that other flight arrangements are being discussed. Jamaica’s government has also appointed its first ambassador/special envoy for investment to the African nations of Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa, and Togo.
THIS WEEK’S TOP CARIBBEAN NEWS
CARICOM SEEKS REGIONAL VIEWS ON FOOD SECURITY ISSUES
At the Regional Food Systems Dialogue convened by CARICOM on May 28, 2021, CARICOM will seek the opinions of regional leaders on the issues of food security, climate resilience, and financing. These key issues will by the focus of talks, with food security discussions highlighting the importance of improving productivity and opportunities, as well as recognizing the challenges, in agriculture, forestry, and fisheries. The CARICOM member nations will also consider new technologies and innovations, with the focus of climate resilience discussions focused on a commitment to moving to low-carbon development, climate-smart production processes, and the use of digitized data to anticipate threats and manage risks.
The Regional Food Systems Dialogue is meant to form a foundation for the changes required to bring the necessary transformative policies to the Caribbean.
THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
JAMAICAN KRISTEN CLARKE CONFIRMED AS HEAD OF U.S. DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE CIVIL RIGHTS DIVISION
Second-generation Jamaican Kristen Clarke was confirmed by the United States Senate and will now serve as the head of the civil rights division of the US Department of Justice. With her confirmation, which was opposed by nearly all Republicans in the US Senate, Clarke becomes the first woman of color to lead the department. The vote for her confirmation was 51 to 48, with only Republican Susan Collins of Maine voting with the majority. In her new role, Clarke will be in charge of over 50 attorneys and will face serious issues, including voting rights and police shootings of Black people. Clarke has many years of experience as a civil rights attorney, and according to Alex Padilla, Democratic Senator, she has been a strong ally to the most vulnerable populations in the US throughout her career and is dedicated to protecting the civil rights of all Americans.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS
SANDALS RESORTS HOLDS GROUNDBREAKING CEREMONY TO MARK CREATION OF THREE NEW RESORTS IN JAMAICA
The top luxury resort company in the Caribbean, Sandals Resorts International (SRI), celebrated its legacy in Jamaica and reaffirmed its commitment to the nation in a special groundbreaking ceremony on May 26, 2021. The event marked the first phase of an ambitious three-resort project totaling US$230 million that will include Sandals Dunn’s River. The first phase will be followed by a second that will transform the adjacent ocean front property into Sandals Royal Dunn’s River. The ceremony was attended by Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness and other dignitaries. Jamaican Minister of Tourism Edmund Bartlett believes the Sandals expansion represents a “strong vote of confidence” for Jamaica and tourism in the Caribbean following the downturn caused by COVID-19.
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
COLLABORATION BETWEEN JFMAU AND JAVAA DESIGNED TO HELP THE AILING ENTERTAINMENT INDUSTRY
The Jamaica Federation of Musicians & Affiliates Union (JFMAU) and Jamaica Association of Vintage Artistes and Affiliates (JAVAA) have agreed to make collaborative efforts that will benefit both of the organizations as they attempt to help the ailing entertainment industry. In a joint statement, the organizations noted that the partnership between two of the top entertainment industry representative voices is a win for both and will lead to innovations designed to alleviate the current economic situation facing the industry. Both the newly installed president of the JFMAU Lowell Lawson and the chair of the JAVAA Frankie Campbell said their understood that transforming the situation to the benefit of the industry requires good leadership and people who will support the organizations’ policies and program.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
JAMAICAN SHADAE LAWRENCE SETS NEW NATIONAL RECORD WITH DISCUS THROW
Jamaica’s discus specialist Shadae Lawrence established a new national record with a throw of 67.05 meters at the USATF Throws Festival at Roy P. Drachman Stadium in Tucson, Arizona. The distance of the throw was two meters longer than her previous personal best of 65.05 meters, which she set in 2019. Lawrence said she was not surprised by her record-breaking performance as she had consistently trained very hard in recent weeks. She produced good throws in practice and knew she could do well in competition. Her coach Julian Robinson expressed similar sentiments, saying he was not surprised as Lawrence has become stronger and has continued to improve her technique. With her throw in Arizona, Lawrence moves up to the third spot on the World Athletics rankings.