THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
MERGER OF HEART/NTA WITH OTHER ENTITIES APPROVED BY HOUSE
Jamaica’s House of Representatives has approved the merger of the HEART Trust/NTA with the National Youth Service, the Apprenticeship Board, and the Jamaican Foundation for Lifelong Learning. Prime Minister Andrew Holness says the merger will provide a refocusing of his government’s training initiatives and resources into a single entity. The legalities of the arrangement were set forth in the Human Employment and Resource Training (Amendment) Act, 2019, which included 23 amendments.
JAMAICA, CHINA ENTER INTO ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIPS
Jamaica’s Prime Minister Andrew Holness announced details regarding a new economic partnership arrangement made between Jamaica and the People’s Republic of China. The partnership centers on increasing investments in areas that include special economic zones and trade. According to Holness, the new arrangement indicates enhanced levels of engagement between the two nations. He made his announcement to the House of Representatives as part of a discussion following his recent visit to China.
THIS WEEK’S TOP CARIBBEAN NEWS
2020 GRAMMY NOMINATIONS INCLUDE 15 CARIBBEAN ROOTS ARTISTS
Announcements of the 2020 nominees for Grammy Awards in 2020 include 15 Caribbean roots artists. Included in the nominations are Camila Cabello of Cuba and David Sanchez of Puerto Rico. Daniel Caesar, a Canadian-born singer with Barbadian and Jamaican heritage, was also named. Other Caribbean-linked nominees include Koffee, Julian Marley, Luis Fonsi, iLe and Bad Bunny, Marc Anthony, Aymée Nuviola and Juan Luis Guerra 4.40 and Vicente García.
THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
HANNA CRITICIZES GOVERNMENT ABOUT “DISREGARD” FOR JAMAICAN DIASPORA
Lisa Hanna, Jamaica’s People’s National Party (PNP) spokesperson for foreign affairs and foreign trade, Has criticized Jamaica’s government for what she believes in “arrogant disregard” for the Jamaican Diaspora. Hanna believes the government as “steamrolled” its agenda by imposing its own Global Jamaica Diaspora Council on Jamaicans who live overseas. Calling the Jamaican Diaspora “a national asset” that shouldn’t be politicized. She noted that there had been no discussions with the Opposition and Kamina Johnson-Smith, Jamaica’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade concerning the Minister’s proposal appointment of herself and 14 others to the council. This effectively provides the Minister with control of the “voice” of the Diaspora, says Hanna.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS
USAIN BOLT LAUNCHES SCOOTER LINE IN JAPAN
Jamaica’s legendary track-and-field Olympian and sprint superstar Usain Bolt is looking to revolutionize transportation in Japan by introducing Bolt Mobility’s line of scooters to the Japanese people. Bolt is the co-founder of Bolt Mobility, an American scooter company. The celebrity athlete plans to use his clout to convince authorities of the environmental benefits of the scooters and that it would be worthwhile to loosen up current regulations imposed on the use of scooters in Japan. Bolt launched his plans in Tokyo, Japan, on November 15, 2019.
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS & ENTERTAIINMENT NEWS
KOFFEE NOMINATED FOR 2020 GRAMMY AWARD FOR EP “RAPTURE”
Jamaican singing sensation Koffee has been nominated for a Grammy Award for 2020 for her EP “Rapture.” According to the Academy, Koffee’s 5-track EP is defined as an album and was nominated in the Best Reggae Album category. The nomination garnered the respect of reggae artists and promoters such as Tony Rebel of the annual Rebel Salute music festival, who told the Jamaica Gleaner that he was especially impressed with Koffee as she received the nomination for an EP, which is generally shorter than a regular album. For Grammy Award purposes, Koffee’s “Rapture” is being considered an album as it is 15 minutes and 30 seconds in length, which meets the criteria of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences, producer of the Grammy Awards.
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
SPORTS TOURISM IN JAMAICA BOOSTED BY CLASSIC TOURNAMENT
More people are traveling to Jamaica to participate in and to watch various sporting events. In Jamaica, Jersey Mike’s Jamaica Classic Basketball Tournament, is a prime destination event for sports tourists. Launched in 2017, the even is staging its third edition in Montego Bay on November 22 through 24, 2019, with eight teams featured in the competition, including the Louisiana State, Rhode Island, Utah State, North Texas, Nicholls State, UMBC, Eastern Michigan and North Carolina A&T. The event is presented in partnership with Jamaica’s Ministry of Sports, Youth, and Culture; Ministry of Tourism, and the Jamaica Tourist Board.