Antigua Chronicle

  • Five brothers from Potters are currently in police custody assisting the police with their investigations, after illegal drugs, firearm and ammunition were found at their home.

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  • Three years after its opening, the OECS Cancer Centre on Queen Elizabeth Highway has been making great strides on the island and across the region, especially where breast cancer cases are concerned.

    Medical Director at the renowned facility, Dr. Thomas McGowan, had a conversation with the Ministry of Health and the Environment’s Public Relations Department and a number of positive results were revealed.

    During the interview at his office on October 19th, on the 2nd anniversary of the day heavy rains caused the northern walls of the facility to crumble, Dr. McGowan declared that the Medical Pavilion has made tremendous improvements in the lives of many women across the island.

    “Where radiation has a very important impact is when you can do radiation locally. Women no longer need to lose their breasts when they get breast cancer. They can have the lump removed and we can give radiation afterward and I would say that has had a huge impact on a patient’s quality of life; you can imagine the difference between having your breast and not having your breast.  So I would say that has been something I am very proud of, the impact that we’ve had,” Dr. McGowan noted.

    The American oncologist added that the numbers speak for themselves, stating that over the past thirty (30) months they have been getting an increase in patients who have already had their breast lumps removed, compared to what it was when they first started.

    “Over the past two and a half years, I have seen a marked increase in the percentage of patients who have had their lumps removed and who have retained their breasts versus when we first started when that was very uncommon. It has had a huge impact,” the oncologist disclosed.

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  • The Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross along with Regional Director of the International Federation of The Red Cross and Red Crescent (IFRC) in the Americas, Walter Cotte, Peter Cuffy, acting Director of the Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross (ABRC) Barbuda Branch, Emrick John, Acting Chairperson Barbuda Council The Governor General of Antigua and Barbuda, Sir Rodney Williams, his wife, Her Excellency Lady Sandra Williams along with other delegates from the IFRC, ABRC and Local Media travelled to Barbuda to conduct site visits.

    The delegation was flown to the sister isle on a Plane provided by the World Food Programme.

    The first leg of the visit was to the World Food Programme Tent, currently situated at the Barbuda Fisheries Complex. The Facility housed Shelter Kits and Building Materials donated to the relief efforts by the IFRC, USAID and Shelter Box. President of the Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross (ABRC), Michael Joseph noted that in the last damage assessment conducted by the ABRC, National Office of Disaster Services (NODS) and Shelter Box, homes were marked with GPS Coordinates to simplify rebuilding and other relief efforts. He also noted that Shelter Box has conducted training sessions with the Environment Division on how to configure and manage the Shelter Kits. He also added that the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has asked the Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross to Chair the Committee of Aid Agencies currently operating in the relief efforts after the impact of Hurricane Irma.

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  • In a recent International Basketball Federation (FIBA) Senior Men World ranking presented by Nike, the Antigua and Barbuda Basketball Association National Senior Men’s Team ranked 76th out of 213 countries.

    Of the 213 FIBA member countries worldwide, only 149 were ranked in the list presented by Nike. The other countries not ranked have 0 points, and were all positioned with the same rank, after the last country presented.

    Caribbean countries ranked higher in the list included: Puerto Rico (15), Dominican Republic (17), United States Virgin Islands (51), Bahamas (59), Cuba (60), and Jamaica (68).

    However, Antigua and Barbuda had a higher ranking than its Lesser Antilles, and other Caribbean, contenders in the list, namely: British Virgin Islands (92), Barbados (97),

    St. Vincent and the Grenadines (100), Bermuda (109), Guyana (110), Suriname (118), Cayman Islands (121), and Trinidad and Tobago (143).

    The President of ABBA, Daryll Matthew, is quite pleased that National Senior Men’s Team was able to capture such a high worldwide ranking, and is very optimistic that the team will be ranked even higher, after next year’s Caribbean Basketball Confederation (CBC) Senior Men’s Tournament to be held in June 2018. The team captured the bronze medal the last time they competed in this competition held in Tortola in 2015.

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  • Prime Minister the Honourable Gaston Browne, today begins a two-day engagement in the Balkans, where he is one of the featured speakers at a Global Citizen Forum organized by Armand Arton, Antigua and Barbuda’s Economic Envoy, entrepreneur, philanthropist  and founder of Arton Capital, a leading global financial advisory firm specializing in investor programmes for residency and citizenship.

    Prime Minister Browne is among international speakers and philanthropists including Cherie Blair, wife of former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair and founder of the Cherie Blair Women’s Foundation; Her Excellency Jeannette Kagame, First Lady of Rwanda and His Excellency Sheikh Mohammed Al Thani, member of the Royal Family of Qatar at the Forum which is aimed at fostering discussion and learning about global challenges facing the world today and cultivating the relationships that can lead to answers.

    “This year’s topic, Global Citizenship – Opportunities in the Age of Uncertainty, will bring together global citizens, world leaders, heads of state, members of royal families, philanthropists, celebrities, and thought leaders, to explore the risks and opportunities present in our world’s current state of affairs,” pointed out Mr. Arton.

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  • The Police have issued a ‘Wanted Bulletin’ for the immediate arrest of Conroy “Connie” Jones, a Jamaican national who last resided at Bird Road Ottos.

    Jones is wanted in connection with a wounding incident, which took place on September 16th, at Bird Road Ottos. It is alleged that he armed himself with a cutlass which he used to viciously wound the 27yr-old mother of his children during an altercation.

    The woman had to be rushed to Mount St. Johns Medical Center with multiple chop wounds about her body and was said to be in critical condition. She was kept at the hospital over a period of time, and had to undergo surgery.

    Jones is believed to be armed and is considered very dangerous. Police are appealing for him to immediately surrender himself at any police station, accompanied by his attorney or a family member.

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  • The Police Administration has announced on Wednesday that the officers attached to the Bolans Police Station will be temporarily relocated to the Johnson’s Point Police Station as of Saturday 21st October.

    This move is to facilitate much needed repair work, which is to be carried out on the building that housed the police station.

    The general public, especially residents in the southern side of the island, can rest assured that the same level of service will be provided by the men and women attached to this station.

    Residents can also look forward to increase police patrols within these areas. Anyone wishing to contact the Bolans Police Station thereafter can do so by calling 562-8943 or mobile number 726-0155.

    The administration sincerely regrets any inconvenience this move may cause, and solicits the full cooperation of the general public.

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  • Two thousand, one hundred and twelve family packets, containing food and toiletries among other items have been distributed so far to Barbudans who have been affected by Hurricane Irma.

    The figure has been confirmed by Warehouse Manager at the National Office of Disaster Services (NODS) Dion Browne, who says that since the Barbudans were relocated to Antigua, there has been a steady stream of traffic daily at the NODS headquarters on American Road.

    The items which form part of the aid packets are donated by the government, regional and international donors and local individuals and businesses.

    Browne says each package is customized to suit the needs of the individuals and their families.

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  • President of the Caribbean Development Bank, Dr. Wm. Warren Smith, yesterday concluded a visit to Washington, D.C. for the 2017 Annual Meetings of the World Bank Group and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). The President, accompanied by Vice-President (Operations), Monica La Bennett, attended high-level meetings, met with key stakeholders in the global development community, and held discussions with leaders from regional governments from October 9 to 15, 2017.
    During the Meetings, recovery and rehabilitation for hurricane-ravaged Caribbean nations emerged as a key theme. The President, who has reaffirmed the Bank’s support to help the affected countries rebuild more resiliently, participated, along with the Vice-President, in the Small States Forum 2017, a high-level session that brought together Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors from 50 small states to discuss the most pressing challenges they face. During the Forum, held on October 14, the group discussed de-risking, the Region’s vulnerability to climate variability and change, and the blue economy.
    In addition, Smith spoke at the United Kingdom / World Bank High Level Caribbean Roundtable on Disaster Recovery on October 13.
    “The 2017 hurricane season has been one of the most destructive in recent Caribbean history. It is a stark reminder of the reality of climate change, and the dangers inherent in a ‘business as usual’ approach to reconstruction,” Smith said.
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  • GOVERNMENT OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

    MINISTRY OF WORKS AND HOUSING

    SECOND ROAD INFRASTRUCTURE REHABILITATION PROJECT

    INVITATION FOR PRE-QUALIFICATION OF CONTRACTORS

    The Government of Antigua and Barbuda (GOAB) has received financing from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) – United Kingdom Caribbean Infrastructure Partnership Fund (UKCIF)  towards the cost of Road Infrastructural Rehabilitation and Institutional Capacity Building and intends to apply a portion of the proceeds of this financing to eligible payments under a contract for which this invitation is issued.  Payments by CDB will be made only at the request of GOAB and upon approval by CDB, and will be subject in all respects to the terms and conditions of the Financing Agreement.  The Financing Agreement prohibits withdrawal from the financing account for the purpose of any payment to persons or entities, or for any import of goods, if such payment or import, to the knowledge of CDB, is prohibited by a decision of the United Nations Security Council taken under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations.  No party other than GOAB shall derive any rights from the Financing Agreement or have any claim to the proceeds of the Financing.

    This Project is being implemented by the Ministry of Works and Housing (MWH), Road Division.  A Project Coordinator within Road Division shall be responsible for the day-to-day management of project activities.  Engineering Consultants shall be retained by MWH to assist with the supervision of the contract.

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  • Public health and veterinary officials from 15 Caribbean community (CARICOM) countries will receive food safety training here this week, with a focus on meat hygiene. The training will emphasize the Codex principles of meat hygiene which have been developed by the Codex Alimentarius Commission (CAC). The principles cover hygiene provisions for raw meat, meat preparations and manufactured meat from the time of live animal production up to the point of retail sale.

    Officially titled the Joint FAO/Switzerland Caribbean Food Safety Capacity Building Workshop on Foods of Animal Origin, the event will take place on Tuesday, October 17 and Wednesday, October 18, from 8:30am to 5:30pm at the Coco Palm Resort in Rodney Bay, St Lucia.

    The two-day workshop is organized by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the Government of Switzerland, in close collaboration with the Caribbean Agricultural Health and Food Safety Agency (CAHFSA), the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries, Physical Planning, Natural Resources and Co-operatives of St. Lucia and the World Health Organization (WHO).

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  • The UNDP (United Nations Development Programme)-funded Small Island Developing State Center of Excellence (UNDP SIDS-COE), based in Aruba, recently selected Antigua and Barbuda for a one-week technical assistance programme to develop a roadmap to address innovative Waste Management Solutions.

    TNO Caribbean (Aruba) provided an experienced delegation to assist with developing this roadmap.

    TNO is an independent research organisation whose expertise and research has contributed to the competitiveness of companies and organizations, to economies and to the quality of society as a whole.

    A press conference held at the Department of Environment last Friday fielded several individuals who were key facilitators in the training exercise which was held at the Precision Center.

    Environmental Engineer Kris Kats of TNO Caribbean was a part of the Aruba delegation that provided technical assistance during the training session.

    With a vast amount of experience in waste management under his belt, he said that while working in the Caribbean Islands and South America over the years, he has noticed that a lot of the islands have similar problems in respect of waste management.

    “You have to look at the islands` skills; you have to look at many factors like culture, history, and also what really goes to the landfills, to come up with a suitable solution for each particular island,” said Kats.

    He continued,  “Sometimes you can do a lot on the island itself and we saw a lot of good initiatives that are already running fulfilled with passion, but they are also relatively small and not really self-supporting,  so that’s a challenge to keep them up and running and also make them survive for the future,” he explained.

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  • A number of people were taken into police custody as a result of several “Sting Operations” carried out by the police on the weekend. Officers attached to the Criminal Investigations and Narcotics Departments as well as the Rapid Response, Special Services, and K-9 Units executed a number of warrants on several properties throughout the island, and were successful in seizing controlled drugs, large sums of money, among other criminal properties.

    On Friday, the operator of the “Straight Pub” located at Paynters, along with others, was taken into custody by police, after a quantity of Cannabis was found on his property during a search. The police also seized several pieces of electronic items, along with an undisclosed sum of $EC currency, which was taken to the police station, pending further investigations.

    Meanwhile, a Cassada Gardens man is questioned by police in connection with Money Laundering offences. Police searched his apartment on Friday, and found an undisclosed sum of money along with several documents of interest. The items were seized and taken to the police station, as investigations continue into the matter. Similarly, a 36yr-old Skerritt’s Pasture woman is held in connection with Embezzlement. A mobile phone, among other documents was seized during a search of her home on Sunday.

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  • A little more than a week following the opening of its new retail Experience store at Redcliffe Street, St. John’s, Digicel has opened a 2nd new model store at Hills Park, Friars Hill Road.

    The Hills Park team stand ready to facilitate all customer requests, as they strive to ensure that the customer’s total communications needs are met.

    Visitors to the ‘Experience store’ on Monday the 16th, October will enjoy double the credit on all Top Up of $20 or more.

    Digicel’s Hills Park Experience Store will open Monday – Friday 8:00am – 5:00pm and on Saturdays from 8:00am – 3:00pm.

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  • Prime Minister the Honourable Gaston Browneon Friday commenced a busy two-days of activities in Washington while attending the IMF/World Bank annual meetings.

    Early Friday, Prime Minister Browne accompanied by Minister of State in the Ministry of Finance and Corporate Governance, Senator Lennox Weston; Ambassador Sir Ronald Sanders; Financial Secretary Whitfield Harris and Deputy Financial Secretary Rasona Davis-Crump met with the World Bank Regional Director for the Caribbean, Tahseen Sayed and held discussions on the rebuilding programme on Barbuda and the Antigua and Barbuda economy.

    The country’s leader also signed the Agreement for Encouragement and Protection of Investment with the Director General of OPEC Fund for International Development (OFID) Mr. Suleiman Jasir Al-Herbish.

    “The signing of this agreement is important to the future development of Antigua and Barbuda as it places us in a position to gain financial assistance for development projects.  This agreement is also designed to assist in financing private sector activities in Antigua and Barbuda involving investors from OPEC member states and other developing nations,” said Prime Minister Browne.

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  • To ensure that aid is distributed in an effective and impactful way, The Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross (ABRC) partnered with Shelter Box, an organization that believes in shelter as a human right – that shelter from the chaos of disaster and conflict is vital, The National Office of Disaster Services (NODS), The Barbuda Council and members of the Barbudan Community to conduct a Shelter Aid Assessment in Barbuda.

    The main objective of the assessment, which took place from the 7th – 8th of October, was to identify and mark homes with Level one and two Damage. Level one damage occurs when the structure has sustained damage but is habitable. Level two damage to a structure is when some degree of damage to is sustained roof, windows, walls and doors but will be habitable after repairs.

    This assessment will be used to ascertain which households need would need a Shelter Repair Kit which includes a Hand Saw, Hoe and Handle, Shovel, Mutt Hoe, 3 meter measuring tape, Claw Hammer, Curved Needle, Metal Shears, Tie Wire, Rope, Roofing Nails and Regular Nails or a tent as a temporary living arrangement until their home is adequately repaired.

    According to Director General of The Antigua and Barbuda Red Cross, Elvis Murray-Watkins who was a part of the delegation who conducted the assessment, “The assessment reached 509 homes and the items will be on Barbuda for distribution when Barbudans return home.”

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  • Gospel Artistes in Antigua and Barbuda have come together to do a tribute song dedicated to their brothers and sisters in Barbuda and other Caribbean islands who have been affected by hurricanes Irma and Maria. “We In This Thing Together” was written and produced by Billboard chart topping and multi-award winning gospel artist Sherwin Gardner and recorded At Cadence Fire Studio in Antigua.

    “Our islands love music, and this is a great way to bring our people together. We are going to be sending this song to the various radio stations locally and across the Caribbean and we will be partnering with Digicel and using their D Music app to help bring awareness and support to our island. This is just the beginning of many more initiatives that the Gospel ministers in Antigua and Barbuda will be doing” said Sherwin Gardner.

    Some of Gospel Artistes who were featured in the track are Emerge Gospel Challenge winners Dornell Simon-Carty (2016), Peetron Thomas (2015), first runners-up Romancia Kingston (2015) and Kashm Charles (2017) and second runner up Joybany Quinn (2016); Naycha K.I.D; Kirlin McCay; Cadence; Jahdiel; Robyn; Apostle Dexter Laurence; Roxy; Kulcha D; Sade Sealey and more.

    Look out for this meaningful and explosive track “We In This Thing Together” which will be released this week!

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  • Antigua and Barbuda’s Prime Minister Gaston Browne electrified a gathering of representatives of international agencies and governments in Washington DC on Saturday by reproaching developed states for undermining the development of small states by the withdrawal of correspondent banking relations.

    The Prime Minister was speaking at a Small States Forum organised by the World Bank as part of the week of meetings of the Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

    Mr Browne told the Forum. “it is unconscionable that developed states, which control the international payment system, have increased the vulnerability of small states by creating artificial impediments that undermine our development”.

    Speaking in the context of the decimation of several Caribbean countries by Category 5 Hurricanes in September and the reversal of years of economic development, the Antigua and Barbuda leader declared that “Correspondent Banking is a global public good and should be available to all countries and all regions”.   Stating that banking relations “is a fundamental human right that is just as important as the provision of other basic services such as water, electricity and broadband services”, Mr Browne told the high-level audience that “the socio-economic impact of de-risking is more severe than any hurricane”.   He added that “de-risking is not only an existential threat but one of the most egregious acts committed against small states”.

    The Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister’s statement received strong support from the leaders of other small states in Africa, the Caribbean and the Pacific as well as representatives of international agencies.

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  • It’s official! The Judges Hill Community Clinic is equipped and ready to serve as the medical facility was officially commissioned on Thursday with pomp and style during an official opening ceremony east of the New Winthorpes Primary School.

    With hundreds in attendance, including villagers, well-wishers and a number of high-level government officials and dignitaries, the long-awaited dedication ceremony brought joy and delight to a community that had been without a health clinic since 2007.

    Applauses and shouts of victory filled the evening skies when the ribbon was officially cut by Health and the Environment Minister, Molwyn Joseph, Acting Governor General Sir Clare Roberts, Member of Parliament for St Georges, Dean Jonas, Principal Nursing Officer Nurse Margaret Smith and Acting Supervisor of Public Health Nurses, Nurse Phillipa Roberts.

    Addressing the gathering earlier in the afternoon, Minister Joseph forcefully implored the audience not to dwell on the past but rather seize the moment while also looking towards the future.

    “I know that the people of this community have waited a long time but we will not dwell on the nine years of waiting. Let us seize the moment, be inspired and celebrate the fact that we are opening this clinic today and as my Principal Nursing Office reminded me just now, that there are four more to go.”

    Joseph also reminded his audience of the importance of nurses in our society, stating that they are the cornerstone of healthcare delivery on the island.

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  • The Caribbean Development Bank’s (CDB) poverty-fighting flagship programme, the Basic Needs Trust Fund (BNTF) has unveiled an ambitious plan for its ninth cycle. The Bank has negotiated more funds for the BNTF, taken steps to improve the programme’s efficiency and effectiveness, and will strengthen partnerships with the private sector.
    These innovations are being outlined to BNTF stakeholders during a series of project launch workshops, which are taking place in the nine participating countries, where stakeholders will also receive guidance on implementing the new cycle.
    CDB’s Acting Portfolio Manager for BNTF, George Yearwood, said the countries stand to benefit from a grant allocation of USD 40.8 million, which could be boosted by funding secured through private sector partnerships.
    “CDB has negotiated increased contributions for the Special Development Fund, to secure grant resources for BNTF sub-projects to tackle poverty in the Region. Also, the Bank will seek to leverage additional resources through partnerships with the private sector, charities and other civil society organisations,” said Yearwood.
    He also noted that Country Projects found to be performing well during the mid-term review may be in line for additional funding.
    “The funds from BNTF are to be carefully targeted through an evidence-based Country Policy Framework or action plan which responds to poverty, particularly in rural areas. And, CDB has set aside an incentive amount of USD 5.2 million, which will be distributed at mid-term based on project performance,” added Yearwood.
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  • Trevor Este of All Saints was convicted and fined $1,000 in All Saints Magistrate’s Court for Impersonating a Police Officer on Wednesday.

    He appeared before Magistrate Emmanuel and was ordered to pay the fine forthwith, or serve two months in prison.

    Trevor Este of All Saints

    The Court heard that in January of 2015, he went to the home of a man in John Hughes, and pretended to be a police officer within the Sexual Offences Unit, conducting investigations into a rape case.

    He went as far as demanding money from the John Hughes resident to dispose of the case before it reaches the Court.

    The man, who has never been implicated in any offence, reported the matter to the police, and he was arrested and charged and taken before the Court and was granted bail.

    However, in February of this year, he breached his bail conditions and he was arrested and remanded to prison.

    Up to the close of Court sessions on Wednesday he was unable to pay the fine, and as such he was remanded to Her Majesty’s Prison until the fine can be paid.

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  • The Pan Caribbean Partnership against HIV/AIDS (PANCAP) convened its 27th Meeting of the Executive Board on Wednesday, October 11th at the Beachcombers Hotel in St Vincent and the Grenadines.

    Antigua and Barbuda is being represented by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health and the Environment Walter Christopher.

    The meeting is designed to assess the Partnership’s progress towards the elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV and Syphilis (EMTCT) and the UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets – 90 percent of people living with HIV know they have the virus, 90 percent of those who know they are infected are receiving sustainable antiretroviral treatment and 90 percent of those people on treatment have sustainable suppression of their virus by 2020.

    The meeting will also reflect on PANCAP’s achievements; Sharpest regional reduction in HIV incidence by 48.1%; Decline in AIDS-related deaths by 55%; Antiretroviral coverage increased to 52% from less than 5% of the eligible population in 2001; Virtual elimination of mother-to-child transmission of HIV.

    The Executive Board will discuss the recent findings of the assessment of PANCAP and CARICOM Council of Human and Social Development (COHSOD), Ministers of Health endorsement of the Board’s decision to pursue Option 2: Streamline and Refocus of the three options identified by the assessment. Specifically, the Board will discuss and agree on the approach to streamlining and refocusing.

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  • Veronica Feracho of Codrington was convicted and fined $6,000 for Possession of Cannabis in the St. John’s Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.

    She appeared before Chief Magistrate Walsh jointly charged with Devon Mackintosh of Buckleys with Possession of Cannabis, Possession with intent to sell and Being Concerned with the supply of Controlled Drugs.

    Feracho was found guilty and was fined $6,000.

    She was ordered to pay $3,000 forthwith and the balance by the end of October. Failure to do so, she would be sentenced to nine months at Her Majesty’s Prison.

    The other charges against her were withdrawn, as well as those against McIntosh.

    The Court heard that in April of this year, Feracho sent a pound of Cannabis among a package with fish from Barbuda and to Antigua aboard the ferry.

    The package, which later arrived at the Heritage Quay Pier, was picked up by McIntosh. Members of the police K-9 Unit, who were on duty at the time, became suspicious of his actions, and held on to him and the package.

    A search was carried out on the package and Cannabis was found hidden inside the fishes.

    The drug was seized and he was taken into custody.

    Further investigations into the matter led the police to Feracho, and she was subsequently arrested and charged.

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  • Every Friday the staff of CIBC FirstCaribbean will be hosting events at both branches to invite customers and friends to join the bank’s Walk for the Cure.

    Now in its sixth year, organisers were expecting more participation than in previous years.

    However, the passage of Hurricanes Irma and Maria forced the organisers to postpone the annual event from 7th October to 28th October.

    Country Manager, Glen Smith said that with the disruption of life due to the hurricanes in September, people lost focus and it was necessary to re-boot.

    “CIBC FirstCaribbean Walk for the Cure was designed to raise both awareness and funds for the campaign against cancer. Over the past few years we have teamed up with the Breast Friends Organisation and the Oncology Department of the Mount St. John Medical Centre to stage this campaign and both organisations have benefitted from the funds raised,” Mr. Smith said.

    Last Friday staff interacted with customers and friends to encourage them to join the campaign against cancer. This will continue every Friday for this month.

    The walk is a regional cancer awareness and fundraiser which takes place in all the territories of the Dutch and English speaking Caribbean where the bank operates. Last year across the region, over 20,000 participants (employees, friends, cancer survivors and the general public) hit the streets to show their support over the walk weekend, held in most territories on the first weekend in October.

    Over the last five years it has raised in excess of US$1.3 million across the region, all of which was donated to various organisations involved in raising awareness, early detection and assisting cancer survivors and their families.

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  • To help with the Barbuda relief efforts, the Antigua & Barbuda Tourism Authority (UK Office) partnered with the Archer Street Cocktail Bar on a UK based fundraiser evening. Held at the Antigua and Barbuda Beach Shack in Archer Street on the closing night of the five-month pop-up, the raffle and auction prizes helped to raise £12,664.23 which will go directly to the High Commission’s Relief Aid.0

    British Airways, Virgin Atlantic, Carlisle Bay Resort, The Inn at English Harbour and Sheer Rocks restaurant all contributed with generous prizes for the auction. Other raffle prizes from charitable partners included theatre tickets, meals for two and UK hotel and spa stays.

    Guests included a mix of Archer Street members, the UK travel trade, travel media and Londoners with an affinity to the island. Attendees listened to Her Excellency Karen-Mae Hill give a moving welcome speech about the impact of Hurricane Irma on Barbuda and how visitor arrivals to Antigua are now more important than ever.

    Of the £12,664.23 raised, the Archer Street team kindly donated £1,809.23 with a personal contribution from co-owner Siobhan MaGill of £1,000.

    Her Excellency Karen-Mae Hill, High Commissioner for Antigua and Barbuda says, “In Archer Street, Antigua and Barbuda has a valued friend and partner.  The road to rebuilding Barbuda has been made that much easier to navigate with the continued support of persons right across the United Kingdom providing a helping hand.”

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  • Ninety-Two pounds of Cannabis, concealed inside mayonnaise was seized by the police at V.C. Bird International Airport on Thursday. The illegal substance was found aboard Caribbean Airline Flight #459 from Kingston Jamaica.

    Members of the Police K-9 Unit were on duty at the airport carrying out a routine check, when one of the dogs alerted the handler to five cardboard boxes packed with mayonnaise. A search was carried out on the boxes, and thirty-eight tightly wrapped packages of Cannabis were found concealed inside each plastic jar.

    The items were seized and taken to Police Headquarters. The consignment was addressed to a hotel located on the southern side of the island. No one was arrested; however, further investigations are ongoing into the matter. Since the inception of the Police and Customs K-9 Units earlier this year, the K-9 Dogs have successfully assisted in taking thousands of pounds of illegal drugs off the streets of Antigua and Barbuda.

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  • It is undeniable that the ‘Gun Culture’ has pervaded many of the ‘Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS).’ Occurring with frightening regularity, have been shootings that speak to recklessness and killings that are capable of being deemed senseless. Many will have seen communities reduced to societal lawlessness, with countable crime scenes of ‘adult males and females; …young men and women –some innocent and some not-so-innocent.’ This article looks specifically at homicides in two ‘OECS-St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Antigua and Barbuda.’ It also looks briefly at the Judiciary and a classic response by Jamaican authorities in its resolve that law-abiding people shall live peacefully and to conduct legitimate business in a safe environment enacted the notorious ‘Gun Court Act’ [1974]. La-abiding citizens in these jurisdictions have demanded measures in curbing; (i) ‘…Gun proliferation; (ii) …Accessibility or acquisition; and (iii) …arresting the senseless killings.’

    QUANTUM LEAP

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  • Following a series of vital meetings with its major cruise line partners last week, Antigua and Barbuda was successful in reassuring its cruise line partners of the readiness of the destination to receive additional calls for the upcoming 2017-2018 winter cruise tourism season.

    The country’s tourism Minister the Hon Asot A. Michael, after leading a delegation of tourism Ministers and officials from St. Lucia, St. Kitts and Nevis, and Antigua and Barbuda was able to confirm extremely positive news for the destination.

    Between October and December 31st this year, the destination will welcome and receive a projected 459,138 cruise guests, from 226 ship calls. Of these calls 57 were recent additions to the schedule and 12 will be inaugural calls from ships that have never visited our port before.

    This means that the total estimate of cruise ship visitors to Antigua and Barbuda for the entire year will be the highest ever with some 907,172 visitors, making 2017 a record-breaking year for cruise tourism.

    While the country is receiving an unprecedented number of calls this season due to the reassignment of itineraries, as a result of the recent hurricanes Tourism Minister, The Hon. Asot A. Michael commented, “This great milestone would not have been possible without the hard work and investment done by the Government in upgrading our cruise facilities. In record-breaking time we lengthened the Heritage Quay pier and completed the dredging of our harbour and turning basin to safely accommodate the visiting ships. It is the ABLP administration’s foresight in returning the Cruise Tourism sector to the front burner that is now yielding dividends for the entire country” said Minister Michael.

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  • Seven Bills are down for debate when the Lower House of Parliament meets today.

    Prime Minister and Minister for Finance the Hon. Gaston Browne will move the second and third readings of the Antigua and Barbuda Merchant Shipping (Amendment) Bill, the Delimitation of Maritime Space (Antigua and Barbuda and the Republic of France in the Caribbean Region) (Ratification of Agreement) Bill and the Tax Administration and Procedure Bill, 2017

    The Antigua and Barbuda Merchant Shipping (Amendment) Bill amend the original Act of 2006 to make it possible for the Registrar to grant a certificate of registry to a ship where the owner of the ship has qualified or is in the process of qualifying 11, to own an Antigua and Barbuda registered ship.  The provisional registration can only be done where the administrative requirements preliminary to registration has commenced .

    The provisional registration is valid for a period of six months, but may be extended for a further six months at the discretion of the Registrar.

    Also down for second and third readings are the Firearms (Amendment) Bill, the Criminal Prosecutions Service Bill and the Larceny (Amendment) Bill, 2017.  Attorney General and Minister for Legal Affairs, the Hon. Steadroy Benjamin will lead off the debate.

    The Firearms (Amendment) Bill, will amend the Firearms Act by revising the existing penalty provisions and introducing more stringent penalties for offenders convicted of offences under the Firearms Act.

    The Government therefore has decided to delete the imposition of a fine as an option from the from the sentencing provision and limit the penalty for offences committed against the Firearm Act to a prison term only.

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  • Axcel Finance, the leading regional microfinance institution in the Caribbean, has developed a double benefit offer for Small and MicroEnterprises .This special MicroBiz loan offer is designed to help them make purchases to restock their business for the busy holiday season, and at the same time they can win a 10% cashback on the value of the loan.
    The Offer has been dubbed the “STOCK-UP LOAN PROMOTION” and is valid for a limited 30 day period.
    “Christmas is the busiest and most lucrative season for small business in the country. We at Axcel Finance understand how difficult it is for them to access funds to stock up or enhance their businesses for this period. So we came up with a tailored offer to assist them, where they
    get to loan up to $50,000 – which is above our normal threshold. We then give 10% cash back to the winner by way of real cash which can be ploughed back in to the business or use as one deems fit.,” explained Country Manager of Axcel Finance, Jahvaun Goodwin.
    Axcel Finance was set up in the region to provide necessary financing for small businesses that found it difficult to access loans to help grow their business.

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  • Axcel Finance, the leading regional microfinance institution in the Caribbean, has developed a double benefit offer for Small and MicroEnterprises .This special MicroBiz loan offer is designed to help them make purchases to restock their business for the busy holiday season, and at the same time they can win a 10% cashback on the value of the loan.

    The Offer has been dubbed the “STOCK-UP LOAN PROMOTION” and is valid for a limited 30 day period.

    “Christmas is the busiest and most lucrative season for small business in the country. We at Axcel Finance understand how difficult it is for them to access funds to stock up or enhance their businesses for this period. So we came up with a tailored offer to assist them, where they get to loan up to $50,000 – which is above our normal threshold. We then give 10% cash back to the winner by way of real cash which can be ploughed back in to the business or use as one deems fit.,” explained Country Manager of Axcel Finance, Jahvaun Goodwin.
    Axcel Finance was set up in the region to provide necessary financing for small businesses that found it difficult to access loans to help grow their business.

    “We understand the critical role that Small businesses play in the economic growth of our small developing states. Access to traditional financing proved a challenge for these businesses, so we built a system and process that caters specifically to the needs of these small business through our MicroBiz Loan. This current STOCK UP Loan Offer is just one of the innovative ways we continue to engage the business sector and to let them know that we care and they remainthe centre of everything we do”, added Jahvaun Goodwin.

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  • Prime Minister the Honourable Gaston Browne received the representative of Morocco, Ambassador Abderrahim Kadmiri, among a series of diplomatic appointments Monday.

    Ambassador Kadmiri brought a message of sympathy and solidarity from King Mohammed VI regarding the passage of the recent storms, and the assurance that Morocco would do what it can to assist with relief and recovery.

    Regarding recovery, Ambassador Kadmiri explained that, on the instructions of King Mohammed VI, the Government of Morocco had dispatched a C-130 cargo plane with relief supplies to the disaster area. This plane was off-loaded in St. Lucia and the relief supplies were shipped to Antigua, arriving within the past week. The Moroccan diplomat pointed out that he recently had a ceremonial hand-over session of relief supplies with the National Office of Disaster Services (NODS).

    PM Browne asked that his special thanks and appreciation be conveyed to the King, and praised the quick response of Morocco to the disaster affecting Antigua and Barbuda, Dominica and other countries in the northeastern Caribbean.

    Mr. Browne also thanked Ambassador Kadmiri for his Government’s pledge of US$ 1 million towards recovery and reconstruction in Barbuda, and compared the response of Morocco to that of other countries which had not come forward. PM Browne noted that he found the relief effort in relation to Antigua and Barbuda to be largely a South-South affair.

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  • By: James Knight,

    Eclipse time again. Not the partial eclipse of the sun on Monday, August 21st. Once more, we have a student with a ridiculous number of CSEC passes, 13 of them grade ones.

    There were 8,803 entries from the public and private secondary schools, with an overall percentage pass of 73.3, according to reports. It is also said that 1,594 of our Antigua and Barbuda State College students sat the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Exams (CAPE) this year, with 82 percentage pass. Epicurean and those other large supermarkets must be happily awaiting the fresh set of cashiers and baggers.

    Mango Ripe – Mango Sweet 

    But what about those who didn’t do well in CAPE? What about those who didn’t do well in CSEC? I guess they can pack the shelves. In what direction have we moved since the first public secondary school was opened in Antigua in 1955?

    When I entered that school exactly 50 years ago, it had a technical department, a woodwork centre, laboratories, and wonderful landscaping; and it was the hub of A-Level (sixth form) studies on the island. I could not imagine back then, that we would be so utterly helpless today, especially since I was growing up with a father whose ideas for our human and economic development seemed so logical and straightforward.

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  • PARAMARIBO, Suriname – The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), and the Government of Suriname have partnered to deliver a more reliable, efficient and sustainable electricity supply in that country. The Electricity System Upgrade and Expansion Project, which will be implemented by utility company, N.V. EnergieBedrijven Suriname (EBS), was launched on Monday, September 25, 2017 at the Courtyard Marriott Paramaribo.
    Under the Project, EBS will undertake the upgrade of 36.6 kilometres of sub-transmission and distribution lines, the construction of five new substations, and the expansion or upgrade of three existing substations. It will also include the installation of three solar photovoltaic plants by 2021, two in the Nickerie and one in Coronie. In addition, a Master Grid Study and a Dynamic Stability Study will be conducted, in anticipation of changes to the operating environment, as a result of provisions under the country’s Electricity Act (2016).
    Speaking at the launch, Director of Projects at CDB, Daniel Best, noted that the energy sector is a key driver of economic growth and social development for Suriname.
    “The Bank’s 2014 to 2018 Country Strategy Paper for Suriname identified support to EBS and support for investments in renewable energy and energy efficiency as priorities for the Government of Suriname. We know the importance of a reliable electricity service in supporting economic activity and social development. CDB is therefore pleased to be a partner in investing in this upgrade and expansion project, and supporting the country’s shift to more sustainable energy sources,” said Mr. Best.
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  • Antigua and Barbuda’s Consul General in Miami, Gilbert Boustany was on Monday officially appointed as Non-Resident Ambassador to the United Arab Emirates.

    Ambassador Boustany who was acting in the position since April of this year, has been overseeing preliminary works of a number of projects on behalf of the government, said that he is pleased to serve his government at this level.  “The bonds of friendship between Antigua and Barbuda and the UAE was significantly strengthened with the coming into office of the Gaston Browne administration, and I am committed to further developing this bond,” Boustany noted.

    He said that it is his intention to boost understanding and relations of friendship and cooperation between the two countries.  He further stated that boosting of bilateral relations in the economic, trade, cultural and political areas are of high importance.

    Foreign Affairs, International Trade and Immigration Minister, the Hon. Charles Fernandez who was at the appointment ceremony said that Ambassador Boustany has done significant work in the interest of the Government and people of Antigua and Barbuda over the past two and a half years and he is confident that he will continue to work tirelessly in the interest of the nation in this new portfolio.

    In addition to being Non-Resident Ambassador to the UAE, Ambassador Boustany will continue to serve as the Consul General of Antigua and Barbuda in the Consulate in Miami.

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  • Health experts are stressing the importance of exclusive breastfeeding in Antigua and Barbuda.

    The point was made at a workshop held at Mount St. John’s Medical Center last Friday.

    Chairperson of the Breastfeeding Committee, Samantha Moitt, said that the Breastfeeding Committee is responsible for protecting, supporting and promoting breastfeeding.

    She said that the theme this year is, “Sustaining Breastfeeding Together.”

    “It reminds us that to be successful in our breastfeeding community, we all have to play a part and that part extends beyond the healthcare realm,” Ms. Moitt declared.

    The workshop attracted a host of health care workers including doctors, nurses, administrators along with representatives from the Medical Benefits Scheme and Early Childhood Education which has responsibility for daycare centers as well.

    Moitt further stressed that the role of the churches, schools and employers are also crucial to the ongoing success of breastfeeding in Antigua and Barbuda.

    “Breastfeeding is everybody’s business and this is why we need to come together and support it since everyone has a role in protecting breastfeeding.”

    She said this year’s focus is on the working mom.

    “We want to ensure that mothers who are returning to work feel confident enough to continue to supply breast milk even though they are not physically with their babies. We want to ensure that working moms are convinced that there is a way to exclusively breastfeed and at the same time be supported by the community to include their employers, their family, the daycare and their health care providers.”

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  • As long as the State of Emergency exists on Barbuda, all persons traveling to and from Barbuda to clean up or repair their homes or to participate in the general restoration and rebuilding process do not have to pay transport fees.

    This was declared by Health and Environment Minister Molwyn Joseph on Monday (October 2nd, 2017) at a special meeting attended by members of the Barbuda Council and the Hurricane Response National Coordinating Committee.

    Five of nine elected members of the Council, representing both the Antigua and Barbuda Labour Party and the Barbuda Peoples Movement, along with the Barbuda Parliamentary Representative, Hon. Arthur Nibbs were present at the specially convened meeting.

    Notably absent was elected Barbuda Council member Trevor Walker, the leader of the Barbuda Peoples Movement (BPM) and former Barbuda Parliamentary Representative.

    All ten members of the Barbuda Council were invited to attend the meeting at the Ministry of Health & the Environment Headquarters.

    The Hurricane Response National Coordinating Committee is chaired by Minister Joseph and is the coordinating agency for the cleaning up of Barbuda and for the repair and rebuilding effort. It is also responsible for mitigating environmental health risks on the island.

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  • A Coroner’s Inquest on Tuesday, concluded by ruling Oniqua “Nikki” Phillip’s death was an accident. Magistrate Conliff Clarke convened the hearing in St. Johns Magistrate’s Court with a six member jury panel to look into her death. During the hearing, a number of witnesses; to include police officers were called upon to give evidence into the matter. The session ended with the jury returning a unanimous verdict that her death was caused by accident.

    The mother of one was among a crowd of revelers, when she reportedly fell underneath a truck transporting a sound system, during 2016 Carnival Last Lap Celebrations. Following the incident, the police launched an in depth investigation into the matter, beyond that of a normal fatal accident. An autopsy report later revealed that she died as a result of severe crush injuries to her face and skull. A toxicology test was also done as part of the investigations, and it revealed that her Blood Alcohol Content (BAC) level was twice the amount her normal level. Now that the inquest is done, the report will be forwarded to the Director of Public Prosecutions for his consideration and final decision.

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  • The Police, along with the family of 73 year-old Kenneth Dyer of Skerritt’s Pasture are seeking the assistance of the general public in knowing his whereabouts.

    Mr. Dyer was last seen on 18th September by a family member. However, this matter was only reported to the police on 26th September, 2017. Since then the Police have carried out several searches throughout the island based on information received, but have so far been unsuccessful. Kenneth is the brother of George Dyer of Cassada Gardens and Mary Herberts of Skerritt’s Pasture. He is described as being dark in complexion, approximately 5ft – 10ins in height, carries a low cut hair and a Mechanic by trade.

    Anyone with information as to the whereabouts of Mr. Dyer is asked to contact any Police Station or the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) at 462-3913\462-3914.

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  • Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda the Hon. Gaston Browne has given a pledge to stand in solidarity with his friend and colleague Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit of the Commonwealth of Dominica, as that country grapples with the rebuilding process following the devastation caused by the passage of Hurricane Maria two weeks ago.

    Prime Minister Browne made the pledge during a visit to Dominica on Sunday, accompanied by Trinidadian and International soca star Machel Montano, members of his management team and officials from the Christian Charity Samaritan Purse.

    “I am standing with him personally and to let him know that the government and people of Antigua and Barbuda are standing with the Commonwealth of Dominica during this time of need.  We have our own difficulties with the rebuilding of Barbuda, which was decimated by hurricane Irma, but we continue to stand with Dominica and to share as much as we can.  We want to let the people of Dominica know that anything we can do for them we will definitely not spare any effort,” Prime Minister Browne said.

    “I am confident that Dominica will rise like a phoenix from the ashes.  You are not alone in this.  When we had our issues with Barbuda, you came to Antigua to give us comfort.  We are one.  Fifteen percent of our population comprises Dominicans. There are no other islands like Dominica, Antigua and Barbuda and Montserrat that have a greater relationship.  We are one.  We are here to stand with you one hundred percent.  It’s difficult, but you got to be strong,” Prime Minister Browne told Prime Minister Skerrit.

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  • Antigua and Barbuda Prime Minister Gaston Browne noted he has once again been vindicated in a defamation claim he asserted following the publication of an article by Spanish newspaper, El País, which was in turn referred to by the BBC in Britain in a story earlier this month on the Odebrecht bribery scandal.

    The BBC has now removed its earlier reference to the original El Pais story that reported an unsubstantiated allegation about Browne and added the following correction:

    Correction 26 September 2017: This article has been amended to remove a reference to Gaston Browne, the Prime Minister of Antigua and Barbuda. It was based on an interview in the Spanish newspaper El Pais. However, the paper has said its original source has not provided any evidence to support the allegations.

    The El Pais newspaper, headquartered in Madrid, in full acknowledgement that Browne was defamed by Roderigo Tacla, a lawyer who worked for the Brazilian-based international construction company, Odebrecht, and who is facing trial in Spain on charges of bribery and corruption, has also since published a different version of its original story.

    In its earlier publication on July 28, 2017, El País had published a report of an interview, with no corroboration, in which Tacla in which he alleged that, in January 2016, €3 million had been paid by Odebrecht to Browne, as a bribe, in return for which it was alleged that information requested by the Brazilian authorities would not be delivered.

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  • Antigua and Barbuda and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan established diplomatic relations on Wednesday, September 27th with the signing of a Joint Communique at the Permanent Mission of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordon to the United Nations.  The Communique was signed by His Excellency Dr. Walton Webson, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Antigua and Barbuda to the United Nations and Her Excellency Ms. Sima Sami Bahous, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Jordan to the United Nations.

    The Communique now provides a framework for Antigua and Barbuda and Jordan to begin exploring areas of mutual interest.  Ambassador Webson expressed his satisfaction with this step taken by the two countries noting that the Communique would allow for more bilateral interaction including in areas of tourism and economic cooperation.  Ambassador Bahous of Jordan signaled his Government’s interest in having a mutually supportive relationship with Antigua and Barbuda.

    The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is located in the Middle East and became a member of the United Nations in 1955.

    The establishment of diplomatic relations with Jordan is part of the wider thrust of the Government of Antigua and Barbuda to pursue new partnerships with the aim of advancing the country’s economic growth and development.

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  • Antigua and Barbuda and the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan established diplomatic relations on Wednesday, September 27th with the signing of a Joint Communique at the Permanent Mission of the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordon to the United Nations.  The Communique was signed by His Excellency Dr. Walton Webson, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Antigua and Barbuda to the United Nations and Her Excellency Ms. Sima Sami Bahous, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Jordan to the United Nations.

    The Communique now provides a framework for Antigua and Barbuda and Jordan to begin exploring areas of mutual interest.  Ambassador Webson expressed his satisfaction with this step taken by the two countries noting that the Communique would allow for more bilateral interaction including in areas of tourism and economic cooperation.  Ambassador Bahous of Jordan signaled his Government’s interest in having a mutually supportive relationship with Antigua and Barbuda.

    The Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan is located in the Middle East and became a member of the United Nations in 1955.

    The establishment of diplomatic relations with Jordan is part of the wider thrust of the Government of Antigua and Barbuda to pursue new partnerships with the aim of advancing the country’s economic growth and development.

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  • Subsequent to the lifting of the mandatory evacuation order for Barbuda, many Barbudans are expected to return to the island.

    While it is the right of Barbudans to return to their community, the Ministry of Health & the Environment is cautioning the returning residents to appreciate that basic medical and utility services are still at a minimum and that every effort must be made to minimize the health and safety risks that are often associated with hazardous conditions associated with the passing of a hurricane.

    The Ministry is also advising the residents of Barbuda who decide to return home that even though the mosquito threat has been neutralized, it is important to practice preventive measures to ensure that the threat does not return.

    The Ministry, therefore, suggests that the following precautions be taken:

    Vector Control:

    • Cover all water catchments with cloth, mesh or original covering
    • Ensure overflow of tank is covered with cloth of mesh
    • If containers are breeding mosquitoes, add a few drops of cooking oil to create a thin film over the surface of the water
    • Add topsoil, stones or dirt into any holes capable of holding water
    • Empty and upturn pet’s feeding bowls to avoid water settlement and also to deter rodent activity
    • For plants that grow in water, the vase should be emptied, the walls of the vase thoroughly washed every seven (7) days and the roots of the plants should be washed as well to rid mosquito eggs
    • Affix wire meshes to windows to prevent the entry of mosquitoes

    Avoiding Personal Injury while doing Home Repairs:

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  • Logos Hope will soon arrive in St. John’s, Antigua & Barbuda and be opened to the public from October 5th through October 15th at Nevis Street Pier. This unique vessel with international crewmembers offers exclusive onboard events for people of all ages, in addition to its array of quality, affordable books. Don’t miss out on the opportunity to meet the crew in the book fair and the events on the ship!

    Guests can experience unique cultures and hear stories from people representing many nations around the world. All events have limited seating. Tickets are available the Christian Literature Center in St. John’s until October 4th. After this they can be found on board the Logos Hope.

    Logos Hope offers an expanded selection of over 5,000 titles at affordable prices. The rest of the Visitor Experience deck is also open for the public to explore. From the Welcome Area, which introduces the new vessel through a short movie and interactive displays, to the International Café, which has ice cream, drinks and snacks for sale, there is sure to be something for everyone.

    Logos Hope is operated by GBA Ships e.V., an international, charitable organization registered in Germany. Since 1970, the organization has welcomed over 45 million visitors up the gangways in over 150 countries and territories around the world.

    MV Logos Hope will open to the public at Nevis Street Pier from October 5th, 2017 through October 15th, 2017. Opening hours are as follows: Tuesday through Saturday*: 10:00 AM – 9:00 PM; Sundays: 2:00 PM through 9:00 PM. Closed on Mondays.

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  • During the past month the Caribbean has been pummelled by two catastrophic category 5 hurricanes: Irma and Maria. The aftermath of these hurricanes has been the loss of lives and significant damage to infrastructure across several Caribbean islands. The University of the West Indies (The UWI), has been working closely with the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), as well as Heads of Government to mobilise its resources and expertise to provide support and relief.

    Hurricane Irma, with maximum sustained winds near 185 mph on September 5, 2017, impacted the states of Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Cuba, the Virgin Islands, St. Maarten/St Martin, and continued its destructive path to the Turks and Caicos Islands and the northern border of Haiti, as well as the south eastern islands of the Bahamas. Then, Hurricane Maria followed, forming into a category 5 hurricane on September 18, 2017, headed to Dominica with wind speeds of 155 mph. Guadeloupe, St. Kitts and Nevis, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, the north eastern coast of the Dominican Republic, and the south eastern Bahamas were all impacted.

    In an early statement after Irma’s devastation, Vice-Chancellor, Professor Sir Hilary Beckles emphasised the University’s commitment to its regional colleagues and partners, and a readiness to work together to bring the countries of the Caribbean back on a firm, positive development trajectory. On September 13, Vice-Chancellor Beckles as part of a special team, visited Antigua and Barbuda to assess the hurricane damage and formulate a relief strategy following Irma’s destruction. A similar on-site evaluation visit to Dominica is currently being planned by the Vice-Chancellor for next week.

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  • C&W Communications (C&W), a Liberty Global company, today announced the first two partner organizations – ShelterBox and Rotary International1 – of the newly formed Cable & Wireless Charitable Foundation to execute immediate relief and recovery activities in the countries affected by Hurricanes Irma and Maria.

    ShelterBox, an international disaster relief charity specializing in providing emergency shelter for vulnerable families who have lost everything after natural disasters and conflicts; and Rotary International, a global network of 1.2 million neighbors, friends, leaders, and problem-solvers who come together to make positive, lasting change in communities across the globe, will use the Foundation’s funding to continue and accelerate efforts to improve conditions on the ground in impacted territories. The partnerships follow the recent announcement of C&W to establish a regional Foundation with initial funding of $500,000 to focus urgent humanitarian relief and eventually broader recovery efforts in Anguilla, Antigua, the British Virgin Islands, Dominica, the Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico and the Turks & Caicos Islands.

    Speaking on the new alliance, Chris Warham, Chief Executive of ShelterBox, said: “At ShelterBox, we are impatient to help the most vulnerable families who have lost everything in the devastation caused by Hurricanes Irma and Maria. Our partnership with Cable & Wireless will play a vital role in ensuring that we can provide essential emergency shelter and tools to the worst affected communities, giving families the hope and power to recover and begin the journey of rebuilding their lives.”

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  • As Antigua and Barbuda experiences growth in tourism arrivals from key European markets, the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority’s United Kingdom & Europe Office is focused on captalising on the exponential growth by increasing its presence within the market.

    In a grand European blitz, the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority, along with some of the destination’s major hotel and airline partners, descended on the major gateway cities of Frankfurt, Rome, Milan and Stockholm from September 25 – September 29 for travel trade events designed to build awareness of the destination amongst the European trade.

    Director of Tourism UK and Europe for the Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority Cherrie Osborne, who has a responsibility for the European market said, “The selected markets have been observed as having a potential for growth.

    “There is extra capacity within our UK airlines, and while we do have airlift from some of these markets, part of our overall strategy is to grow the markets further by driving business through Gatwick; recognizing the ease of access to the destination via these channels and utilizing the additional airlift on the UK carriers”, Osborne said.

    The Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority is reporting growth prospects for the destination following the roadshow in the source markets.

    Dertour, the largest tour operator partner for Antigua in Germany, accounting for 70% of German arrivals reported an increase in forward bookings of 120%.

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  • 6th September 2017: Time lapse of Hurricane Irma approaching Cane Garden Bay, BVI. The eye passes and then the storm resumes just as camera battery fails

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  • Digicel is committing to help the people of Dominica to rebuild in the wake of the devastating category five hit from Hurricane Maria.
    On a visit to the island on Tuesday to see the damage first hand and establish how Digicel can assist in kick starting the country’s recovery, Digicel Chairman and founder, Denis O’Brien, met with The Honourable Mr. Roosevelt Skerrit, Prime Minister of Dominica, to offer Digicel’s
    support. As such, Digicel will concentrate on three key areas in the south east region of Dominica; the Kalinago Territory, La Plaine and Castle Bruce.
    With meetings taking place this week with Government Ministers and church and community leaders in its chosen communities, Digicel will work to help transform the lives of people there by supporting community projects in the areas of education and housing. In the meantime,
    Digicel engineers, riggers and technical teams are working round the clock to restore the networks with good progress being made.

    Commenting on Digicel’s commitment, Denis O’Brien, commented; “Our first priority is to get our networks back to full strength and our teams are working tirelessly to do that. But of course, we’re also clear on the role we can play in helping the country to recover and rebuild.
    Our work to help transform the communities of Kalinago Territory, La Plaine and Castle Bruce in the south east will see them being given new opportunities and, in time, build in them a new sense of hope for the future. We can’t wait to get started.”

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  • GOVERNMENT OF ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA

    STREET LIGHT RETROFITTING PROJECT

    CLIMATE RISK SCREENING

    REQUEST FOR EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST

    The Government of Antigua and Barbuda (GOAB) has received financing from the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) towards the cost of Street Light Retrofitting and intends to apply a portion of the proceeds of this financing to eligible payments under a contract for which this invitation is issued.  Payments by CDB will be made only at the request of GOAB and upon approval by CDB, and will be subject in all respects to the terms and conditions of the Financing Agreement.  The Financing Agreement prohibits withdrawal from the financing account for the purpose of any payment to persons or entities, or for any import of goods, if such payment or import, to the knowledge of CDB, is prohibited by a decision of the United Nations Security Council taken under Chapter VII of the Charter of the United Nations.  No party other than GOAB shall derive any rights from the Financing Agreement or have any claim to the proceeds of the Financing.

    Streetlights in Antigua and Barbuda, and the accompanying infrastructure, are exposed to multiple natural hazards.  This exposure could include vulnerability to heavy rainfall events, lighting strikes and strong winds.

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  • On Wednesday, September 6, Hurricane Irma engulfed the tiny Caribbean island of Barbuda with 185 mph winds, leaving most of the population homeless and a landscape ravaged by wind and surging waves.

    Since the storm passed, the Caribbean birding community has been increasingly anxious about one bird in particular: the endemic Barbuda Warbler, a Near Threatened Species. Had this charming little bird survived the storm?

    Well, at last there is some good news. BirdsCaribbean is delighted to report that, during a one-day survey trip to Barbuda on September 22, a team from its Antiguan partner Environment Awareness Group (EAG) and the Department of the Environment discovered a total of eight Barbuda Warblers.

    As the only endemic species on the island and country of Antigua and Barbuda, the Barbuda Warbler has a special place in the small community’s hearts. The bird has a perky posture and constantly flits around, searching for insects in trees, thorny scrub and coastal areas. Its estimated population is between 1,000 and 2,500, but before the hurricane its population trends were not determined.

    The first bird was spotted by EAG’s Andrea Otto and colleague Junior Prosper in a fallen acacia tree. “I saw a flash of grey…” Otto reports. “I whispered to Junior – it’s a Barbuda Warbler!” They managed to get a good view and confirmation of the smart little warbler’s grey and yellow plumage. After that, “It took us a while to get a clear photograph of the bird as irrefutable proof of its survival,” notes Otto. The team recorded the birds in a relatively small area near the secondary school in Codrington, the main settlement on the island.

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  • President of the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB), Dr. Wm. Warren Smith, has reaffirmed the institution’s support for the Government and people of the Commonwealth of Dominica, after participating in a Caribbean Community (CARICOM) high-level mission to that country on September 26.
    Smith was part of a delegation that met with the Prime Minister of Dominica, Hon. Roosevelt Skerrit in Roseau to discuss rehabilitation and recovery efforts for the country following Hurricane Maria.
    “CDB stands in solidarity with the Government and people of Dominica as the country seeks to rebuild and recover from this devastating disaster.  We are acutely aware of the significant damage that Hurricane Maria has caused, and have mobilised resources for emergency relief and immediate response. CDB reaffirms our continued support for Dominica to help the country rebuild more resiliently in the months and years to come,” said Dr. Smith on his return to CDB’s Headquarters.
    CDB has begun making preparations to assist with the restoration of essential services including water and sanitation, and lend technical experts to support the recovery efforts.
    Water and sanitation
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  • Winair  repositioned our aircrafts to St. Vincent prior to hurricane Irma and currently the fleet is operating from the island of St. Kitts as fuel and security for aircraft are not yet present in St. Maarten. Winair has performed in excess of 60 relief flights evacuating non nationals and providing transportation to legal residents of St. Maarten.

    Winair has suffered massive damage to its facilities and consequently basic telecommunications, internet, electricity and water were disrupted making operations difficult. The resilience of our employees who came to assist must be noted and is much appreciated by all.

    Moving forward Winair is currently in the process of rebuilding and reintroducing a limited schedule serving the following destinations: Saba, St. Eustatius, St. Barth, Antigua and St. Kitts, once the authorization is given by the appropriate authorities. We are optimistic that this will be granted by October 1, 2017.

    Tortola, Guadeloupe, Dominica and San Juan will be additional destinations once facilities and approvals are granted for resumption of service. Winair is working with appropriate authorities to introduce a frequency service St. Maarten – Curacao – St. Maarten to allow the public to connect with carriers serving Curacao. In conjunction Winair will resume service to Haiti as soon as possible.

    Winair has secured office space in Philipsburg to provide sales and reservation services to the public, expected opening date is Wednesday October 4th.  Further press releases will be issued to update the public as developments are proceeding.

    In closing we thank the people, respective authorities and agencies for their support of Winair.

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  • Phase One of the Barbuda Cleanup is almost complete.  The mosquito problem is under control. Stagnant water has been treated and removed from most areas.

    Measures have been taken to control the rodent population. Most debris has been removed from public roads and other public areas. The dead animals issue has been treated and mainly eradicated.

    In addition, the Hanna Thomas hospital was cleaned up and the undamaged part is now being used by EMS as a medical post.

    Health and Environment Minister Molwyn Joseph visited Barbuda on Monday, September 25th and said he was satisfied with the progress made.  “We have succeeded in meeting our goals,” he remarked.
    Phase Two of the Cleanup operation will start soon. This will involve Barbudan residents cleaning up their homes and yards, keeping the items they need and want and placing the discards at the curb to be removed by Solid Waste. Central Board of Health (CBH) will continue fogging, water treatment and other vector control activities throughout Phase Two.

    Phase Two will also see a limited rebuilding process as repairs will begin on those homes that received minimal damage during the passage of Hurricane Irma.

    This second phase is currently being planned and the Ministry of Health & the Environment is actively working with the Barbuda Council to ensure a smooth, organized and efficient operation.

    Repairs are being made to the Community Center in Codrington with the assistance of carpenters from Barbuda. When these repairs are completed, it is hoped that at least one hundred Barbudan workers will be housed there. These workers will be engaged in the repair and rebuilding process.

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  • The National Office of Disaster Services (NODS) is setting the record straight concerning relief supplies stored in the warehouses both at Coolidge and American Road.

    According to Director of NODS Philmore Mullin, there is a notion that everything in the warehouses belongs to Antigua and this type of false information can be clarified with a simple question.

    Mullin says the warehouse at Coolidge is part of a regional stockpile to support countries in the region that have been impacted by disasters. These include St Kitts/Nevis, Anguilla, Tortola, Turks and Caicos and now Dominica.

    The NODS Warehouse on American Road is also a sub-regional warehouse where items are stored for sub-regional focal point members namely Montserrat, St Kitts/Nevis, Anguilla and the British Virgin Islands, some of which have received supplies, along with Dominica.

    As part of a special arrangement with the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA), items are also stored for UNICEF and the Catholic group, St Vincent de Paul Society.

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  • Police are continuing their investigation into a shooting incident at Cedar Grove that left a 26yr old man dead. Around 5:40am on Wednesday, the body of Kenroy Simpson, a Jamaican national residing at Cedar Grove, was discovered dead in an open pasture, with what appeared to be multiple gunshot wounds to his body.

    Shortly after 1:00 am on Wednesday, the police received a call and responded to a report of an alleged robbery and kidnapping at his home in Cedar Grove. It was reported that four men wearing masks, and dressed in camouflage clothing, forcefully entered his home which he shared with his girlfriend, and robbed them at gunpoint of an undisclosed sum money. It is further alleged that the assailants forced him into a silver Toyota Platz Motor Car R3295, and drove him to the area where his body was later found.

    Police have since recovered a vehicle fitting the description abandoned on Piggott’s Main Road, in the vicinity of the Government’s Motor Pool. The vehicle was seized and taken to Police Headquarters. Prior to this incident Simpson was arrested and charged for drugs related offences, as well as he was questioned in connection with Money Laundering offences as recent as in April of this year.

    Further investigations are currently ongoing into the matter. The police are appealing to anyone with information surrounding this incident to contact the nearest police station, or the Criminal Investigations Department at 462-3913 or 462-3914.

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  • Police are continuing their investigation into a shooting incident at Cedar Grove that left a 26yr old man dead. Around 5:40am on Wednesday, the body of Kenroy Simpson, a Jamaican national residing at Cedar Grove, was discovered dead in an open pasture, with what appeared to be multiple gunshot wounds to his body.

    Shortly after 1:00 am on Wednesday, the police received a call and responded to a report of an alleged robbery and kidnapping at his home in Cedar Grove. It was reported that four men wearing masks, and dressed in camouflage clothing, forcefully entered his home which he shared with his girlfriend, and robbed them at gunpoint of an undisclosed sum money. It is further alleged that the assailants forced him into a silver Toyota Platz Motor Car R3295, and drove him to the area where his body was later found.

    Police have since recovered a vehicle fitting the description abandoned on Piggott’s Main Road, in the vicinity of the Government’s Motor Pool. The vehicle was seized and taken to Police Headquarters. Prior to this incident Simpson was arrested and charged for drugs related offences, as well as he was questioned in connection with Money Laundering offences as recent as in April of this year.

    Further investigations are currently ongoing into the matter. The police are appealing to anyone with information surrounding this incident to contact the nearest police station, or the Criminal Investigations Department at 462-3913 or 462-3914.

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  • The Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) is standing firmly with its member countries that have been impacted by Hurricane Irma.

    The Bank has disbursed a grant of EC$1 million each to the Governments of Anguilla and Antigua and Barbuda to support relief and early recovery.

    A delegation from the ECCB visited Anguilla on September 13 in solidarity and support.

    Members of ECCB Team to Anguilla

    The delegation, which included the ECCB Monetary Council Member for St Kitts and Nevis, Prime Minister the Honourable Dr Timothy Harris and Governor Timothy N. J. Antoine, met with Chief Minister of Anguilla, the Honourable Victor Banks and other senior government officials and toured the country to obtain a first-hand account of the impact of Hurricane Irma.

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