News

Sagicor counters politicians’ flooding claims

Trey Grandison shovels silt and sand from a drain in Mineral Heights while Tivon Howell patiently waits to take the sludge to a nearby field. (Photo: Michael Gordon)

Sagicor yesterday provided building approval numbers for its Millennium Mall in Mineral Heights, Clarendon, as it countered statements made by two politicians implicating the company in the severe flooding in that area over the weekend. “Sagicor sought and received approval from the National ... Read More

Guard dies in St Mary crash; students among six injured
SECURITY guard Patrick Wallace, 33, was killed yesterday in an accident on the Boscobel Main road in ... Read More

Local Government Minister Desmond McKenzie  McKenzie to update House today on weekend flooding
MINISTER of Local Government and Community Development Desmond McKenzie will make a statement in the ... Read More

Gavel Cop accused of St Thomas contract-style killing for court Friday
THE policeman who was charged jointly with two other men in the alleged contract-style killing of 33 ... Read More

IMF warns of financial problems associated with withdrawal of CBRs

Tuesday, April 25, 2017    

BROWNE... we have always taken the position that we reserve the right to call off the referendum

WASHINGTON, DC, United States (CMC) — The International Monetary Fund (IMF) says financial fragilities occasioned by the decrease in the number of correspondent banking relationships (CBRs) could undermine the long-run growth and financial inclusion prospects of countries affected by the withdrawal of CBRs. Correspondent banks, which are mainly large, international banks domiciled in the United States of America, Europe and Canada, provide Caribbean states with vital access to the interna ... Read More

Hampton School seeks new principal for Sept

Tuesday, April 25, 2017    

MURRAY ... tried to prevent photographer from taking pictures of accused Rupert ClarkeJamaica Observer file

THE Hampton School in St Elizabeth is set to get a new principal to lead the all-girls institution in the upcoming school year beginning in September, replacing embattled principal Heather Murray, who the ministry says will be going on pre-retirement leave. In a newspaper advertisement over the weekend, the Munro and Dickenson Trust, which governs the operations of the school, invited applications for the position of headmistress, with interested candidates having up until May 31 to submit appl ... Read More

Eye on castor oil

BY JAVENE SKYERS Observer staff reporter skyerss@jamaicaobserver.com | Tuesday, April 25, 2017    

Armed with data showing that just about half of the global demand for castor oil and its related products are being met, Jamaican stakeholders are laying the foundation to benefit from the industry that is expected to grow to over US$2 billion in another seven years. According to Jamaica Castor Industry Association (JCIA) Interim President Joel Harris, while the association has only been formally registered since January 2017 it has been working since last year to sensitise stakeholders in the ... Read More

No conflict of interest, Grange insists in response to Hanna

Tuesday, April 25, 2017    

Olivia 'Babsy' Grange

CULTURE Minister Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange is maintaining that there was no conflict of interest in the engagement of Trevor Nairne as artistic director in last year’s Grand Gala celebrations, as was suggested by St Ann South Eastern Member of Parliament Lisa Hanna. In her response to questions tabled in the House earlier this month by Hanna, the Opposition spokesperson on culture, Grange said Hanna was attempting to establish a link between the awarding of a contract to Nairne by ... Read More

Senate approves property tax changes

Tuesday, April 25, 2017    

It is often argued, in favour of indirect taxation, that direct taxes (income tax, corporate tax, property tax) are harder to collect than indirect taxes (production, consumption, international trade) because of evasion and avoidance.

The Senate on Friday approved the two Bills facilitating the changes to the property tax regime implemented in April. The Bills — the Property Tax (Amendment) (No 2) 2007, and the Property Tax (Validation and Indemnity Act) — were approved, after the Senate split into a divide called by the Opposition on two occasions. The Opposition lost both votes to the Government 10-5 and 10-6. Under the April 1 regime, commercial properties faced an average increase of 137 per cent. However, t ... Read More

ECLAC says Caribbean economic activity will expand in 2017

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 10:57 AM    

SANTIAGO, Chile (CMC) — The Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) is predicting average growth at 1.4 per cent for the English and Dutch-speaking Caribbean. ECLAC said that the projection for the Caribbean is slightly above the 1.3 per cent rate given in December. It put overall average expansion for Latin America and the Caribbean at a 1.1 per cent, slightly below the 1.3 per cent that was estimated in December 2016. As in previous years, ECLAC said, in 2017, ... Read More

US laptop carry-on ban still puzzling, says Emirates CEO

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 10:17 AM    

Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President of the Department of Civil Aviation, CEO and Chairman of The Emirates Group talks with the journalists during the Arabian Travel Market Exhibition, in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Tuesday, April 25, 2017. The chairman and CEO of Dubai’s long-haul carrier Emirates says he “can’t dig into somebody’s mind” to understand why the US instituted a ban on laptops and other personal electronics in carry-on luggage from 10 cities in Muslim-majority countries. (Photo: AP)

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — The chairman and CEO of Dubai's long-haul carrier Emirates said Tuesday he "can't dig into somebody's mind" to understand why the US instituted a ban on laptops and other personal electronics in carry-on luggage from 10 cities in Muslim-majority countries. However, Sheikh Ahmed bin Saeed Al Maktoum said he believes US President Donald Trump is a businessman who "wouldn't want to affect American business" in his decisions. Sheikh Ahmed's careful phrasing ... Read More

105 people killed in road crashes since the start of the year

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 9:54 AM    

KINGSTON, Jamaica — The Road Safety Unit (RSU) in the Ministry of Transport and Mining is renewing its call for motorists to desist from speeding on the roads, as road fatalities continue to mount. Since the start of the year 105 people have been killed in road crashes. Pedestrians, motorcyclists, passengers and drivers of private motor vehicles have recorded the highest number of fatalities to date. A breakdown of the figures reveal that: 29 were pedestrians, six were pedal cyclists, 31 ... Read More

Elton John contracts 'potentially deadly' infection on tour

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 9:37 AM    

British singer and musician Elton John performs on stage during the French Victoires de la Musique music award ceremony in Paris on November 19, 1988.(Photo: AFP)

LONDON, United Kingdom (AFP) — British pop icon Elton John contracted a "potentially deadly" infection while on tour which saw him spend two nights in intensive care and has forced shows to be cancelled. The musician became "violently ill" during a flight from the Chilean capital Santiago, where his Latin America tour ended April 10, his public relations representatives Murray Chalmers said in a statement. On landing in Britain he was immediately admitted to hospital where he underwent t ... Read More

Vaz, Tufton to make presentations in sectoral debate today

Tuesday, April 25, 2017 9:01 AM    

Daryl Vaz

KINGSTON, Jamaica — Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Daryl Vaz, is among four speakers scheduled to participate in the annual sectoral debate when it resumes at Gordon House this afternoon. Vaz is responsible for the land, environment, climate change and investment portfolios in the super ministry, headed by Prime Minister Andrew Holness. Other speakers scheduled for the debate today are: Minister of Health, Dr Christopher Tufton; Opposition ... Read More



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