P 0 Box 65
THE GRIEADA NEWSLETTER
For The Week Ending June 17th 1978
the Annual Report
figures show that
rose by 289
VISIBLE TRADE DEFICIT UP /
trade deficit increased by over W4% during the
This is disclosed by figures published in
of the Grenada Chamber of Commerce, which
by only 12|%.
s EC$32,913,768 E05371, ,000
The Report takes issue with a Government release of March 3rd 1978
which says that, between 1974 and 1977, Grenada's gross domestic
product increased by over 10%"in real terms". "This figure,
even if correct,its misleading", says the Report, "since 1974 was
an abnormal year in which civil distrubances and industrial action
had adversely affected our exports and our tourist trade."
Referring to the statement in the Government release that there
was an increase of 85% in the number of visiting tourists over the
1974 1977 period, the Chamber's Report points out that this
increase must be viewed in the light of the decrease in 1974
resulting from the civil unrest. "In this connection", says
the Report, "it should be noted that the number of tourists in
1977 is less than in 1973."
The aspect of Grenada's economic situation which most disturbs
the Chamber is the recent increase in the level of taxation. The
Chamber's Report says that, during inflationary periods, increases
in fixed charges to compensate for the decrease in the value of
money is understandable. However, the Chamber feels that
taxation which increases the already high proportion of the Gross
Domestic Product taken by the Public Sector should be
scrupulously avoided. Such taxation is a disincentive to
investment and increases the cost of living, t1anGyamber says.
THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 17.6.78
"The Stamp Tax of 7a% and the Poreign Exchange Tax of 5.% together
represent an increase of over 12j. in under three years", the
Report says, "and when these increases work through the economy,
the multiplying effect on the cost of living will be tremendous."
The Chamber feels that it should not be necessary to raise the
level of taxation to be able to increase Civil Servants' salaries
to keep pace with increased cost of living, and, if increased
taxation becomes necessary on this account, "it would be an
indication that public expenditure and the efficiency of the
Public Service should be investigated."
WHYTE: SLNATOR KNIGHT LYING J
Opposition Member of Parliament, Mr Winston Whyte, has accused
Government Senator Derek Knight of telling untruths.
In an exclusive interview with NhESLETTER yesterday (15th),
Mr Whyte commented on statements reported to have been made by
Senator Knight with reference to the Commonwealth ar liamentary
Association/conference now in session there. Senator Knight
is reported as saying that the reason why the Opposition is not
represented on the Grenada delegation to the conference in
that Mr Whyte refused nomination and himself nominated a
Government member to the delegation.
"That is an absolute lie", Mr Whyte told NEWSLETTER, "Mr Knight
was not even in the House when the nominations to the delegation
were made by the Deputy Prime Minister, Mr Herbert Preudhomme,
who arrogated to himself the right to nominate even members of
Mr Whyte said Mr Preudhomme had nominated him to attend the
Trinidad CPA conference and had nominated another Opposition
Member, Mr Herbert Blaise, to attend the Jamaica CPA conference.
Both he and Mr Blaise had declined and had then acted in
accordance with decisions of the Opposition caucus on the
'or my part, I nominated Unison Whitemen for the Trinidad
TH1I GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 17.6.7,
Conference", Mr Whyte said, "and Herbert Blaaze noml.nated Maurioe
Bishop for the Jamaica conference, both being members of the
Opposition, of course, but these nominations were not accepted
and the Government Members proceeded to fill the Opposition places
on the delegations with Government Members."
Mr Whyte said he thought Senator Kdight's statement is consistent
with "the recent patent moves by Government to try to undermine
the. peoples Alliance", the umbrella under which the three
Opposition Parties fall. "These moves have failed", Mr Whyte
said, "and we are working closer together than we ever did before.
Senator Knight is out of the State and unavailable for comment.
CHAMBER CONCERNED OVER LAND ACQUISITION,
The Grenada Chamber of Commerce is concerned over "Government's
indiscriminate acquisition of several estates for a variety of
This is expressed in the Chamber's Report adopted at the Annual
General Meeting on June 7th. The Report says that "even if the
objective (of the acquistions) is stated to be increased
productivity, this can be achieved only if the units are of
economic sizes and the land is worked by persons who are capable
of achieving the productive goals."
The Report says that, because of the importance of agriculture to
Grenada's economic welfare, Government's current policy could have
disastrous effects. The Chamber feels that the public deserves
to be given something more than vague statements of Government's
Referring to the difficulty some land-owners have had to collect
payment for land acquired by Government, the Report expresses
difficulty to understand the haste being exercised in acquiring
property when there is no indication of any need for urgency.
"It is even more difficult to understand the moral basis of those
acquisitions which are made before financial provision is made to
pay for the land", the Report says. (186 words)
WfirlvPijff #('6 ors
THE GREMADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 17.6.78
LDCa DEFICIT TRADING POSITION WITH MDCQ /
The Annual Report of the Grenada Chamber of Commerce quotes figures
which indicatethat the Lees Developed Countries (LDC) of CARIFTA,
those operating the Dfii
East Caribbean Guyana 3,128,090 t3,014.,000 9,886,00
Currency Authority,-_ Trinidad
&u y Tobago 15,926,000 66,822,000 50,896,000
had a deficit trading Jamaica 5,440,000 7,394,000 1,954,000
position of over Barbados 23.873.000 33,874,000 10,001.000
EC$72.7 million 48,367,000 $21,104,000 72,737,000
relative to the More 1.10.76 to 31.9.77
Developed Countries (MDC), over the period October lat 1976 to
September 31st 1977.
Quoting figures relative to "Sales of East Caribbean Dollars"
(exports) and "Purchases of Regional Currencies' (imports), the
Report shows that, over the period, the LDCs exported ECG48.3
million to the MDCs, and imported EC$121.1 from those sources.
__i' i[!| II
Jamaica Guyana Barbados Trinidad
October let 1976 to September 3ist 1977
THE GRENADA NEWSLEITER Week Ending 17.6.78
KNIGHT WARNS CPA CONFEREIN.
According to a radio news item, Senator Derek Knight today (15th)
warned the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) conference
in Trinidad not to set itself up as a commission of inquiry.
The Senator was referring to questions raised at the conference as
to why the Opposition is not represented on the Grenada delegation.
He said the way that delegation was selected is an internal
matter about which he had no intention of giving the conference
In this connection, the Leader of the Opposition, Mr Maurice
Bishop, has charged that the Opposition is not represented on the
delegation because, when the delegation was being elected,
members of Government refused to accept the OppoebftlOla nominees.
Following Senator Knight's statement to the conference today
(15th), Mr Bishop told NEWSLITTER that, in refusing to tell the
conference how the Grenada delegation was elected, Senator Knight
was hiding the undemocratic procefLrCe operated by the Grenada
"According to the conventions which have developed in the
Commnonealth", Mr Bishop said, "the Opposition in every
Parliament is entitled to representation on delegations to CPA
meetings, and I feel sure that the conference in Trinidad will
take note of the fact that, in characteristic undemocratic
fashion, the Gairy Government has denied us our rights."
The Leader of the Opposition said Senator Knight had told a
deliberate lie when, at a press conference in Trinidad this
week, he said that members of the Opposition had declined
nomination to the CPA delegation and had themselves nominated
Government members to go to the conference.
"Such lies are characteristic of Derek Knight", Mr Bishop said,
"and this is seen clearly from the record." The Leader of the
Opposition said that, in 1974, when the 4enada Law Society was
discussing the attack by the "Mongoose Gang" on members of the
New Jewel Movement, Mr Knight put forward the point that there
was no evidence that anyone had been beaten.
THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 17.6.78
"While Senator Knight was making this point", Mr Bishop said,
"I was sitting in his full view with my bandaged broken jaw
offering mute testimony to the untruth he was putting forward."
Mr Bishop referred also to a television interview given by Senator
Knight in Trinidad on 25th October 1977 in which Mr Knight denied
that the Grenada Government has sent officers of the Grenada
Defence Force to Chile for training. In that interview,
Mr Knight had said that it was "absolutely untrue" that anyone
had been sent to Chile for training.
"That is another example of Derek Knight's lies", said Mr Bishop.
"It is public knowledge that Fitz Abraham, son of the Supervisor
of Elections, Albert Abraham, has been at the Chilean Police
School in Santiago since last year", said Mr Bishop, "and he is
accompanied by another officer of the Grenada Defence Force,
Leon La Crette."
;r Bishop said that what made Senator Knight's lie so pointless
is that, while the Commander of the Defence Force, Mr Winston
Massanto, refused to disclose the ranks of Abraham and LaCrette,
he has not denied that they are receiving training in Chile.
"Senator Knight's blatant disregard for truth is clear indication
of the corruption into which the Grenada Government has fallen",
said the Leader of the Opposition, "and his manouverings at the
CPA conference will have no other effect than to expose the
depths of rottenness to which Gairy and his minions are
prepared to go."
BELMAR MURDER TRIAL NIEX W1EK
ease of- Ihe imurider of
Trial of the accused in the former Minister of Government
Innocent Belmar, 42, will begin in the High Court in Grenada
on Tuesday 20th June.
Belmar is alleged to have been shot on January 4th this year
while having a drink with friends in the village of Birch Grove
about 10 miles from St.Georges, and on trial are Kennedy Budhlall,
'+, and Lauriston Wilson, 23. Budhlall was arrested on
cHE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 17.6.78
January 5th and Wilson, together with Lloyd John, on Jemuary 12th.
John was freed on March 17th after the preliminary hearing before-
Magistrate Nolan Jacobs.
Sources close to the trial told NEWSLETTER today '(15th) that 29
witnesses are listed to give evidence for the prosecution.
Legal opinion is that the trial will'last for 3 to 4 weeks.
Innocent Belmar figured prominently in the Report of the Duffus
Commission of Inquiry into the breakdown of law and order and
police brutality in Grenada. At the time of the inquiry, he
was a police officer and had charge of the notorious mongoosee
Gang", a band of criminals of which, the Commissioners found,
Prime Minister Gairy had personal responsibility for its
recruitment and control.
ARBITRATION TRIBUNAL ADJOURNS SINE DIE
The Government appointed tribunal arbitrating the industrial
dispute between LIAT (197.) Ltd and the Technical & Allied Workers
Union (TAWU) has adjourned its sittings to a. date to be fixed.
The dispute surrounds a drawing up of a new Agreement to replace
one which was scheduled to expire on.31st December 1977 and, in
addition to wages, points in dispute include allowances for meals,
sick leave and a pension scheme which TAWU is pressing for
immediate introduction. ''he old Agreement remains in force
until a new one is signed.
The tribunal began its sittings on Monday (12th) and activity
that day was confined to submission of documents admitted by both
sides. Tuesday (13th) was an off day used by the tribunal to
study the documents and, after evidence was taken yesterday (14th),
the adjournment was taken. The Chairman of the tribunal,
ex-Puisne Judge, Mr Adrian Date, said that, after the evidence
has been examined, it might be necessary to sit again to clarify
Giving evidence for the Company was Mr Curll Searles, Grenada
Manager of LIAT (1974) Ltd. Donald Dopwell, TAWU Shop
THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 17.6.78
Steward, Gloater Donald of the Airport Staff, and Margaret Wilson
of the St.Georgea Office Staff gave evidence for the Union.
Mr Andre Jessamy, a Trinidad barrister specialising in industrial
affairs, represents the airline, and the case for the Union was
put by Mr Curtis Stewart, TAWU president.
With Mr Date on the tribunal are ex-Puisne Judge Mr Elvin
St.Bernard nominated by the Company, and economist Mr George
Brizan, nominated by TAWU.
YACHT TOURIST TRADE RbCOVERING
followingg a dramatic 50h/ drop in 1974 as a result of the civil
unrest in the island, Grenada's yacht tourist trade is slowly
Official figures supplied by the Customs Department indicate
that, in this decade, 11-p
the yacht trade peak '11
in 1972 at over 1,100 1083
calls. The figures / 000
show, however, that u 927 90
to 1977, the trade ha 880
not yet recovered to 800
the level of the 1972
figure. 691 700
The accompanying grap 1
shows figures for all .. 500
yachts entering at
Grenada from a foreign
port. 'he figures do 300
not include yachts
leaving Grenada and
returning without _. 100
calling at a foreign
port, but do include 1971 1972 1973 1974 19751976 1977 o
yachts based in Grenada which return to the island from a
,' reign port.
THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 17.6.78
Monthly averages over the 7 years show a high of 121.85 yachts for
the months of February and March, and a low of 28.71 in September.
Except for a slight lift in the averages for July and August,
the figures fall off steadily from the February and March highs
to the low of September, beginning a rise again in October and
rising steadily to February.
CHAMBER ELECTS PRESIDENT
After two attempts the Grenada Chamber of Commerce has elected
its Council of Management for the 1978/1979 term.
Members first got together on Wednesday June 7th for the Chamber's
Annual General Meeting but, because only 12 members were present,
it was decided not to hold elections for the 12-man Council of
Management. The meeting was reconvened yesterday (14th) and,
with a much larger turn out, ir Geoffrey Thompson was elected to
fill the place of out-going President Albert Xavier.
Other members of the Council of Lanagement elected are Mr Derek
Steele, lst Vice-President, Mr Albert Xavier, 2nd Vice-President,
Mr Lyden Ramdhanny, Mr E C Franklin, Mr Michael Minors, Mr James
Stephens, Mr Richard Hood, Mr R A Joseph, Mrs E Padmore, Mr Evelyn
Gresham and Mr Elliot Gittens.
TEACHERS REVIlE POSITION
The 9-man "Coordinating Committee" of teachers. from Government
assisted secondary schools will meet today (16th) to review the
position of their industrial dispute with the Managing Boards of
the dispute arises from the fact that the salaries, of these
teachers have been lower than those of teachers at the Government
owned Grenada boys' Secondary School (GBSS) and, in support of
claims for salaries equal to GBSS, these teachers operated a sick-
out from May 4th to June 2nd.
Of the 11 non-Government secondary schools in the State, 8 are
affected by the dispute, and. the Managing Boards have said that,
THL GRJANADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 17.6.78
unless Government increases the annual grant or permits an
increase in the present EC$30 per term school fees, the teachers
demands cannot be met.
Towards the end of May, Government intervened in the matter and
gave grants which permitted the Boards to pay increased wages
at the end of the month. Government'said it would also
provide funds to pay back-pay from January Ast 1978 and, after
the schools' accounts have been examined, further financial aid
would be given.
With this backing, the Boards made offers to. the teachers which
resulted in the sick-out being called off. However, teachers
were dissatisfied with the fact that the offers were conditional
on the promise of money from Government. They took the view
that they were employed by the Boards and not by Government and
they wanted a firm, unconditional offer and a settlement of the
dispute by June 15th.
The teachers also demanded the reinstatement of one of their
number, Mr Michael Antoine, who, during the sick-out, was
dismissed from the St.Johns Christian Secondary School. This
dismissal was regarded by the teachers as victimisation.
A spokesman for the teachers told NEWSLETTER today (16th) that,
of the 8 schools, only 3 have replied to the demand for an
unconditional offer. These letters will be considered at
a meeting of the Coordinating Committee today (16th) when the
position will be reviewed and further action planned.
The school term ends about June 30th and vacation time will
run until about mid-September. Because of the short time
remaining in the current term, it is unlikely that any
industrial action will be taken now. It is understood
that the teachers will make efforts to get the School Boards
to the negotiating table so that the dispute can be settled
before the new term opens.
With reference to the reinstatement of the dismissed teacher,
Mr Antoine, he is a member of the Grenada Union of Te'ahers,
THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 17.6.78
which union is scheduled to hold discussions with the School
Board this week-end.
0) CRUISE LINER CALLS ** q
During the week ending June 10th, these was only one cruise liner
call at rensda. This was the 'Ounard Countess" which herthed
on Tuesday 6th with 728 passengers.
NEWSLETTER regrets that it has not been possible to give
statistics this week. Efforts will be made to bring
all figures up to date next week.
// / ut rn l 1 1 i