THIS WEEK’S TOP NEWS STORIES
ILLEGALLY BUILT STRUCTURES IN ST. CATHERINE DEMOLISHED BY JAMAICAN GOVERNMENT
The Jamaican government demolished several structures that had been built illegally on land in St. Catherine and had been occupied by gang members. The demolition undertaken on October 6, 2022, followed a notice from Jamaican Prime Minister Andrew Holness, who told the House of Representatives in an update to the Bernard Lodge Development Plan that the government would destroy illegal buildings. He added that this is the first time a settlement captured by gang members would be destroyed, calling it a “watershed moment.” Holness also said that the National Security Council had discovered during a review of the development plan that the area neighboring Clifton represented an “insidious and growing threat” from gangsters who were creating their own subdivision and selling land under false pretenses. Holness also noted that the owner of the property, SCI Holdings Limited, had provided warnings and notices to those involved to stop capturing and illegally building structures. Some 30 structures have been found so far.
JAMAICA’S MINISTRY OF EDUCATION FINALIZES DRAFT POLICY ON ENGLISH LANGUAGE
Fayval Williams, Jamaica’s Minister of Education and Youth, announced that a draft policy on the English language will be introduced for discussion by Jamaican citizens. The Jamaica Teaching Council Act of 2022 is under review, and Williams said the Ministry will host townhall meetings to assess Jamaicans’ reactions to the proposal. The University of Technology (Utech) brought the lack of a policy on English language to the attention of the Ministry. According to Clause 27 of the Act, individuals will be eligible to register as teachers under the proposed statute if the Jamaica Teaching Council has been satisfied that they have written and oral skills in the English language. While Utech endorsed the provision, the lack of an official language policy in the Ministry raises questions about the foundation on which the legislation “insists on the centrality of English” in Jamaica’s education sector.
THIS WEEK’S TOP CARIBBEAN NEWS
TWO CARIBBEAN NATIONS ADDED TO EUROPEAN UNION TAX-HAVEN BLACKLIST
The European Union (EU) has added the Bahamas and Turks and Caicos to its blacklist of tax havens, also returning Anguilla to the list of nations defined as “non-cooperative jurisdictions” just one year following its removal. The EU stated that the additions were made because of concerns that the three jurisdiction attract profits without manifesting “real economic activity.” The countries have corporate income tax rates totaling zero or labels as “nominal-only.” The EU blacklist was first created in 2017 to address wide-spread tax evasion. There are currently 12 “jurisdiction” that are named “non-cooperative,” including American Samoa, Anguilla, the Bahamas, Fiji, Guam, Palau, Panama, Samoa, Trinidad and Tobago, the Turks and Caicos Islands, the US Virgin Islands, and Vanuatu. Countries that are members of the EU are not screened for inclusion on the list, which is updated twice a year. EU member countries are not screened for possible inclusion on the blacklist.
THIS WEEK’S TOP JAMAICAN DIASPORA NEWS
JAMAICA NURSES GROUP IN NEW YORK HONORS THREE NATIONALS DURING DIAMOND JUBILEE CELEBRATION
The Jamaica Nurses Group of New York (UNGNY) recognized three Jamaican national nurses for their outstanding service at its Diamond Jubilee Anniversary and Scholarship Awards Luncheon in Jamaica, Queens, New York. The Jamaican nurses honored by the organization included the former president of the organization, Claudette Powell, RN, MA, who received the award for Distinguished Leadership and International Leadership; Dr. Pamella Hay Hosang, Ed.D., who was presented with the 60th Nursing Education and Service award; and Dr. Karren Dunkley, Ed.D., who received the Trailblazing Leadership and International Service award. Scholarships were awarded to nursing students Zonika A. Tracey of York College at the City University of New York (CUNY), and Rosemarie Dora Gordon of Brown’s Town Community College in St. Ann, Jamaica. The event marked the 60th anniversary of the oldest Caribbean nursing organization in New York.
THIS WEEK’S TOP BUSINESS NEWS
FRONTIER AIRLINES ANNOUNCES NEW SERVICE TO MONTEGO BAY
Airport in St. Louis. The service is scheduled to begin in February 2023. According to Daniel Shurz, senior Frontier Airlines, a budget airline carrier, has announced three new routes from the Midwest in the United States to Montego Bay in Jamaica. The new flights will take off from Frontier Airlines’s hub at Denver International Airport, Chicago’s Midway International Airport, and the Lambert International vice president of commercial flights at Frontier Airlines, the new nonstop service proves the airline’s commitment to providing affordable and convenient flight options to the US and will attract many Americans who live near Denver, Chicago, and St. Louis to opt for winter travel to Jamaica to enjoy its sunny climate and hospitality.
THIS WEEK’S TOP ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT NEWS
JAMAICAN CO-AUTHORS RELEASE ICONIC PHOTO BOOK, “PIECES OF JAMAICA”
Co-authors David I. Muir and Sean “IYA” Henry of Jamaica launched their new and iconic coffee table photo book entitled “Pieces of Jamaica: Jamrock Edition.” The book was designed to capture the spirit of Jamaica, portraying the reality and beauty of the “land of wood and water.” It boasts over 200 pages and 250 images of some of the best known scenes of Jamaica as well as lesser known images from off the beaten path. The new edition features drone shots and fine art watercolor images by Sean Henry, a graduate of Edna Manley College of the Visual Arts and a long-time friend of Muir. The book launch will be held on October 8, 2022, in South Florida at the Island SPACE Caribbean Museum and will feature the opportunity to meet the authors and learn how their project progressed. The event will also include book-signing, poetry, refreshments, and a live musical performance. The “Jamrock Edition” is the second edition of Muir’s 2012 “Pieces of Jamaica” and was released to commemorate Jamaica’s 60th anniversary of independence
THIS WEEK’S TOP SPORTS NEWS
JAMAICA OPEN GOLF CHAMPIONSHIPS COMING TO TRYALL CLUB IN NOVEMBER 2022
The Jamaica Open Golf Championship has been scheduled for November 12 to 15, 2022, at Hanover’s Tryall Golf Club. The event returned in 2021 for the first time since the COVID-19 lockdown. According to Jodi Munn-Barrow, the first woman to become president of the Jamaica Golf Association (JGA), said the 2021 tournament saw good attendance rates, but that the 2022 staging is expected to be even better as the PGA expects the participation of golfers from overseas and former Professional Golf Association (PGA) players. She added that it is beneficial to the country to attract former PGA tour players and current Korn Ferry Tour players to the Hanover tournament as it provides opportunities to promote tourism for Jamaica and Jamaican golf