The Grenada newsletter


Material Information

The Grenada newsletter
Physical Description:
v. : ill. ; 36 cm.
A. & C. Hughes
Place of Publication:
St. George's, Grenada, West Indies
Publication Date:
twenty no. a year
completely irregular


Subjects / Keywords:
Periodicals -- Grenada   ( lcsh )
Politics and government -- Periodicals -- Grenada   ( lcsh )
Economic conditions -- Periodicals -- Grenada   ( lcsh )
Social conditions -- Periodicals -- Grenada   ( lcsh )
newspaper   ( marcgt )
newspaper   ( sobekcm )
Spatial Coverage:


Dates or Sequential Designation:
Began in 1973.
General Note:
Description based on surrogate of: Vol. 11, no. 1 (Jan. 22, 1983); title from caption.

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Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
oclc - 24157414
lccn - sn 91021217
lcc - F2056.A2 G74
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Full Text

Volume 7 Number 29
For The Week Ending 15th September 1979
7th Year of Publication - - 227th Issue


The people of Grenada did not have a revolution to have an election
That is not the prime issue in their mind and it is not the major
area of concern for them.

This opinion was expressed by Prime Minister Maurice Bishop at a
Dress conference on Friday (14th). He said what Grenadians want

to see is the country built and reconstructed.

"What they want to see is certain material.benefits being brought
to them as a, result of having risked their lives on March 13th",
he said. "That, for them, is the key issue."

The Prime Minister said that, on the question of elections,
regardless of how important it might be to some elements inside
Grenada and in the Caribbean and in the world, as a matter of what
they would see as 'principle', the firm view of the People's
Revolutionary Government is that the holding of early elections is
not the view of the majority pf Grenadians. '

"Indeed", he said, "when we go around, the predominant response and'
impression we get is of people who are telling us, 'Forget election
for 10 yG ', 'Forget'elections for 20 years', some say. That
is not our position."


Produced & Printed by Alister & Cynthia Hughes
P 0 Box 65, St.Georges, Grenada, Westindies


;Mr Bishop said the People's Revolutionary Government (PRG) does not

want to state for what period of time the elections must be postponed,
but the PRG is clear in its mind that elections are NOT the key

question. "That is not what people fought for", he said. "That

is not what they risked their lives for, they are not primarily

concerned about that."

jAccording to Mr Bishop, Grenadians are concerned about stabilising the

;economy and building the country. They want to see health clinics,

!they want better medical attention, they want to see what can be done

about unemployment, they want to see the cost of living reduced and

they want a better way of life for themselves and their children.
"We believe that the majority of patriotic Grenadians are concerned

about consolidating the revolution, moreso in relation to its

national security aspects", he said. "They know that Gairy is

still outside and that he is still trying to recruit mercenaries

:to come back, and that means something. It means that our country

,Istill faces external aggression and, therefore, one has to look to

ensuring the consolidation of the national security aspects of the


In that kind of context and situation, the Prime Minister said, it

would be ludicrous to talk about holding an election next week or

next month.

With reference to Grenada's return to constitutionalityy", Mr Bishop

said that what had existed under the Gairy regime was not

constitutionality. "The bit of paper that you can wave around

which you call the Constitution, that entrenches all sorts of nict

rights on paper", he said, "never found practical reflect in terms

Sof the way in which the country was run."

The Prime Minister said even the right to life had been removed and

"the various patriots which have been murdered over the years have

not bven been able to get Coronor's.inquests", and people have not

been arrested and tried. He said most of the guilty people have

Seen spirited out of the country. What Grenada had on paper,

he said, did not have a p ctical reflection in the country, and the
__ r

Week Ending 15.9.79

Week Ending 15.9.79 THE GRENADA N4EWlrETTER Page 3

PRG1feels the people understand this.

"We say, very categorically and boldly that the rule-of-law Io'tni"" 'W

inOcGreada oane-,illpn-.timaes .9Ere tha ,it did six months ago", _h

lsakda"'and-we are very clear t .-thtf* ,.. Today, when pe
their normal rights ag'rfeve'@6aor afr,6nted.:they :db.iv, a-.btneE. ,.

prospect of obtaining justice. in the Courts of law than they did

six months ago and, therefore, we are not at all concerned that, in

theory, there is no Constitution on paper. What we feel should

be looked at is the practical manifestations of what has happened

over the last six months, and what this means to the lives of the

ordinary people of our country."
(A71 words)


The People's Revolutionary Government (PRG) is considering,"very

concretely",certain steps which will have to be taken to ensure

that the Pres4' behasiTs"in A A'tfrae and' responsible0 *ay.' -

Prime Minister Bishop disclosed, this at a.pres .confArence

yestera' y (14th), and he expressed the view.of the PRG that the.

Grenada "Torchlight" newspaper.has not been acting in a responsible


"We do not accept any right of 'Torchlight' to reprint scurrilous

or libellous material from overseas", he said. The Prime''

Minister was not specific but his reference appears to be to an

article he complained of previously. That article was from a

1est German wagarine-and appeared in the Sunday lst July issue of

"Torchllt t". *: , .

"Leaving aside for a moment the fact that there is a special

situation in Grenada (because, after all, there was a.revolution

here on March 13th) in pure conventional terns, tTorchlight 1'does

not have the right to reproduce libellous ma':erial because libel is

libel and the fact of repetition does not make it ay: less ,

-* libellous ", the Pkme h Ministtr said

;continUed) i

Page 4.- THE OR'NDA NBWSLETTBR Week Ending 15.9.79

IMr Bishop said also that the PR3 does not accept "m6notity control

iof newspapers of the sort there, is in 'Torchlight"'. He said

one or two people have full control over what goes into the newspaper

!and, "in the way in which 'Torchlight' has been behaving", this has

Ithe implication that only the views of that minority will be published.
jWe have conclusive and irrefutable proof that, on several occasions,

'when articles are sent to 'Torchlight' by the ordinary masses of the

people of the country, presenting a point of view different to that

held by 'Torchlight', they are not published", he said. "We do not

!accept that this is a proper role for the Press."

1Mr Bishop said "Torchlight" is attempting to spread confusion in the

country and "to add itself as one further vehicle of destabilisation

against the process that the people are trying to build in Grenada".

The Prime Minister felt the time has come when something must be done

about that. Government would act, he said, but, as yet, there had

been been no decision as to what action would be taken.

"Our concern relates to ensuring that the Press does behave responsibly,

does publish the views of people when they are sent in, regardless of

whether those views are contrary to the 'Torchlight's opinion", he
said, "and our concern, therefore, relates to minority control by one

or two elements, moreso by foreign elements, of the mass media in

Sour country."
(433 words)


The People's Revolutionary Gdverhm4nt (PRM) hopes the Grenada Court

of Appeal will commence sittings in November. Answeringgquestions

on the Radio Free Grenada programme, "Face The Nation", on Wednesday

(12th), Acting Attorney General Lloyd Noel disclosed this and said the

Court will be "itinerant". It will sit twice each year, in May

Sand November.

"The purpose", Mr Noel said, "is to enable our Government to choose

Frtm the best brains in the Caribbean,,and we have done so by.choosing
jurists from Barbados, Guyana, Jamaica and Trinidad."


Mr Noel said that, subject to confirmation by the people involved,

the Court of Appeal will include men of the calibre of Mr Aubrey

Fraser who, in 1974, sat on the Commission of Inquiry into the

Breakdown of Law & Order and Police Brutality in Grenada. Mr Fraser

is the Executive Officer of the Council for Legal Education, and

Mr Noel said his appointment to the Court of Appeal is subject to

approval of that Council.

Also proposed to be judges of the Grenada Appeal Court, the Acting

Attorney General said, are Mr Telford Georges, Dean of the Faculty

of Law at the Cave Hill Campus of the University of the West Indies,

Mr Joseph Oscar Fitz-Clarence ("Jof") Haynes,Chancellor of the

University of Guyana, Dr Nick Liverpool, Assistant Dean of the

Faculty of Law at Cave Hill and Dr Edwin Watkins, Chairman of the

Trinidad & Tobago Law Reform Commission.

Mr Noel said it is proposed that these five jurists comprise the

judges of the Court of Appeal, three sitting at a time in rotation.
On the question of the complaint that there is too much delay in the

Courts, the Acting Attorney General said it is proposed that a

second High Court be established to hear civil matters exclusively.

The location of this additional Court has been chosen already and a

presiding judge is being sought.

"This second Court will have a second mode of operation", Mr Noel

said, "in that we are hoping to use that second judge and the Chief

Justice as a Court of Appeal for Magisterial Cases."

The Attorney General said that, under this system, Magistrates will

deal with cases summarily, following which there will be an appeal

to the Court of Appeal for Magisterial Cases. From that Court,

there will be a further appeal to the Itinerant Court of Appeal.

It is hoped the second Court aVp Court of Appeal for Magisterial

Cases will be in operation by January.

In connection with the present crime rate in Grenada, Mr Noel said

irthat, when the PRG seized power in March, there were 4,037 cases

pending in the Magistrates' Courts where, by his estimate, between

Week Ending 15.9.79

Page 5

Page 6


!96% and 98% of all criminal cases are tried.
'he said, this number had been reduced to 1,459.

Week Ending 15.9.79

On August 31st,

During that same period, the Acting Attorney General said, the total

number of cases, both criminal and civil, filed in the Magistrates'

:Courts was 540 for the entire country.

"On the basis of those figures", Mr Noel said, "I will say that the

crime rate has dropped tremendously and, not only this, but the

Magistrates' Courts have been able to function at a level which

enabled people to take their matters to Court and get them heard

within a relatively short time."
Regional Police Force
Mr Noel was asked for his reaction to "the United States offer to

help the Eastern Caribbean states set up a regional police force".

"Our position is set out in the 'Declaration of St.Georges' signed

after the Mini-Summit in Grenada in July", the Acting Attorney General

said, "and as we explained then, we have no problem with what they call

a regional police force as long as that force is concerned with

external protection and is in no way involved with the internal

security of independent states."

SMr Noel said it is an inviolable position that independent countries

must be allowed to control and manage their internal affairs. The

PRG would find no problem in being involved in a regional police force

for external defence, but, if this force is to be involved in internal

security, Grenada would not be interested.

The Acting Attorney General expressed his personal opinion that he is

totally against capital punishment but, he said, a strict policy of

the PRG as to its position on this matter has not been enunciated.

Mr Noel pointed out, however, that, under the Grant of Pardons Law

(People's Law No. 45) passed in June, all death sentences except

one had been commuted to life imprisonment.

The Acting Attorney General expressed another personal opinion, this

time with reference to when elections will be held in Grenada. "An

overriding and overwhelming factor is Gairy's position at large", h14

said "As long as that man remains at large with the potential to

) ~_1_1


Week Ending 15.9.79 THE GRENADA NF''SLETT.R Page 7

create chaos within our island, then it means it will be difficult

to return to normalcy, and an election is, in anybody's language, a

normal situation."

Mr Noel said that, in terms of months or years, he could not say

when am election will be held, but it is his "fond hope" that, once

the island returns to normal, "an election will and must be held so

as to bring Grenada back to what the people like to call 'a

constitutional position"'.

Also in connection with the holding of elections, Mr Noel said "the

well-wprn answer on the question of 'consolidation of the revolution

is partly applicable at this stage." What is even more important

he thought, is to bring into perspective the questions of the

administration of Grenada, the economic position of Grenada, security

and stability.

With reference to the Elections Cpmmission which was named in MNy,

the Acting Attorney General said the naming had been done

prematurely. "We guaranteed to update the existing electoral

legislation by a new enumeraton law", he said, "and, under that law

provision was to be made for an Electorial Commission to replace the

Supervisor of Elections. It is in that context the Electorial

Commission was named."

Due to a number of technical difficulties, Mr Noel said, the

enumeration law has not been passed, and the persons nominated to

the Electorial Commission have no powers. When the law is passed,

the same persons nominated will become the Commission.

With reference to Grenada's Constitution, the Acting Attorney

General expressed the opinion that most Grenadians feel that the?

Constitution which existed up to March 13th, the day of the

revolution, is "totally unacceptable to our conditions in Grenada."

He thought it essential that a new Constitution be drawn up and

constitutional experts have been asked to advise on the form and

structure of the Assembly which is to draw up the new Constitution.

Mr Noel said there are two schools of thought on this, one favourin

Page 8 THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 15.9.79

V Consultative Assembly and the other a Constituent Assembly.

A Consultative Assembly, he said, would be composed of persons nominated

from interested groups, while a Constituent Assembly would have its

Members elected from each constituency.

"We have not yet heard from the experts as to the form of Assembly they

advisee, the Acting Attorney General said, "but, when we have received
this, the decision will be made, and I dent see this happening for

three to six months."

Among other questions, Mr Noel answered queries also on the Missing

iPersons Bureau, detainees, extradition, human rights and the law of

the sea.
(1224 words)


God whispers to us in our pleasures, God ,speaks to us in our

consciouses and God shouts to us in our pains.

Anglican Bishop of the Windward Isl ds, Cuthbert Woodroffe, quoted

this to NEWSLETTER on Monday (10th) the second day of the Anglican

Tri-annual Synod. The Bishop was outlining the form his "charge"

to the Synod had taken. With all the pains in the world, he said,

he had wondered whether people were trying to pay attention to what

;God has been trying to say to them. -

"I tried to point out to Synod", Bishop Woodroffe said, "that so many

disasters, physical as well as political as well as social have come

on the world in 1979, so much has happened between March and August,

that it seemed to me that God was and is trying to speak to us."

The 55 members of the Synod were drawn from Grenada, St.Vincent and

St.Lucia. Twenty-five were lay persons and the remainder were

priests. The Synod came to a cte on Thursday (13th).

____ _~I~ II____


Because of the "unpredictability" of Caroni Ltd of Trinidad, the

National Importing Board (NIB) of the People's Revolutionary

i Government (PRG) is seeking other sources of supply. Negotiations

are being made to obtain sugar from the Dominican Republic.

This was disclosed this week in a release from the Ministry of

Information in reply to a letter signed by 'Angry Businessman' which

appeared in the Grenada 'Torchlight' newspaper. The letter
complained that Minister of Finance Bernard Coard had publicly

accused merchants of creating artificial shortages of ,potatoes and

onions, rice and sugar. The letter said inefficiency of NIB was

responsible for the shortages.

"Regardihg the rice and sugar situation", the release said, .. 3

"officials of the NIB confirmed there has never been a shortage of

rice on the local market, and the brief shortage of brown sugar

experienced three weeks ago stemmed from the problems arising in

Caroni Trinidad Ltd and not with the NIB".

The release said every shipment from Caroni Ltd, paid for in advanced,

has been received short of the amount paid for and, because of this

unpredictability, negotiations are being made to obtain sugar from

the Dominican Republic.

Shortage of white sugar (privately imported) has also increased the

shortage of brown sugar, the release said. Beverage factories

which normally use white sugar, have been forced to use a great deal

more clear brown sugar.

With reference to the shortage of potatoes and onions, the average

amount imported every six weeks is 150,000 lbs and 90,000 lbs

respectively, the release says. Licences to businessmen were

issued between July 17th and August 31st for 190,000 lbs of potatoes

and 125,000 Ibs of onions, the release continued, but, despite the

sxtra licences, it appeared that businessmen imported much less

than was needed.

"In the light of the above facts", the release concluded, "it wpuld

seem obvious that "Torchlight's" 'Angry Businessman' was either

Page 9

Week Ending 15.9.79


Page 10 THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 15.9.79

grossly inefficient in collecting his facts, or deliberately malicous

iln his presentation of them."
(329 words)


Prime Minister Maurice Bishop has accepted an invitation to pay an

official visit to Venezuela in the near future.

The invitation was issued by an official Venezuelan delegation which

visited the island from 10th to 13th September, and was accepted on

Mr Bishop's behalf by Acting Prime Minister Bernard Coard. Mr Bishop

was, at the time, unavoidably delayed in Cuba after the Non-Alligned


The Venezuelan delegation was led by Ambassador Asdrubal Aguiar

Aranguren, Director General of the Department of International

Cooperation of the Ministry of External Affairs.

According to a joint communique issued at the end of the visit, the

Delegation's talks with the People's Revolutionary Government took

place in an atmosphere of great warmth and friendliness. A

wide range of matters was discussed and it was decided to establish

diplomatic missions in St.Georges and Caracas at the earliest
mutually convenient date.
It was agreed also that a joint technical commission for the

delimitation of marine and sub-marine boundaries between Grenada

and Venezuela be established and Venezuela has offered assistance

in undertaking geo-physical studies.

Venezuela is also to assist by providing technical cooperation and

training in the fields of agriculture and livestock, construction

and public works, transport, health, sanitation and housing.

Dr Demetrio Boersner, Advisor to the delegation, told NEWSLETTER

that he and his colleagues were very impressed with what the

People's Revolutionary Government is trying to do. "The

Evolutionary Government seems to be working day and night", he
said "We were amazed at their activity and their rhythm of
_-_ (continued)

Week Ending 15.9.79 THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Page 11

work in a very sincere determination to improve the welfare of the

people and to make them really participate in the shaping of their

national destiny."
(279 words)


The Government Gazette of September 14th gives some details of

changes recently effected in the Estate Duty Ordinance.

One of the principal changes is that, where the value of the

matrimonial home, including up to one acre of land on which the

house stands, does not exceed EC$100,000, house and land will be

exempt from Estate Duty. This condition is applicable where the

house was the deceased main residence and was occupied by him or her

at the time of death.

After deduction of the value of the matrimonial home up to the

allowed limit, rates of duty on the estate are

On tne first E.Ilu,uu00 Nil
On the next 10,000 $1,500
On the next 130,000 39,000
On the excess over 150,000 @ 45%

The term "Privileged Class" has baen amended to include, not only

the mother, wife and children of the deceased, but father, husband

common law spouse, illegetimate, legally adopted and step children

of the deceased.

Property passing to persons in the Privileged Class is limited to

payment of two-thirds of the standard rate of Estate Duty.

Previously, the rate of duty applicaple to persons in the "Non-

Privileged" class was twice the standard rate. This has now

been reduced to a rate of one-third above the standard rate.

According to the Government Gazette, these amendments'to the Estate

Duty Ordinance will cost Government an estimated EC$j million in

revenue. The provision regarding the matrimonial home is

effective from March 13th, while the new standard rates and the

rates applicable to the Non-Privileged class will have effect from

January 1st 1980.

Page 12 THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 15.9.79


'The outcome of a case, now before the British High Court, may prove a

'threat to the future of Windward Island and Jamaica bananas.

IAccording to a report in the "Fruit Trade Journal" of September 7th,

the case was brought by Chris International Foods Ltd against the

iMinistry of Agriculture. The majority of bananas now imported

into Britain is supplied by the Fyffes and Geest Groups and Jamaica

Producers. Chris International claims that the Ministry has

!created a monolopy, and that the system of licencing "dollar bananas"

is contrary to the Treaty of Rome.

'A spokes for the Ministry said there is an obligation under the Lome

'Convention to assure access of "traditional supplies", and there is

no discrimination against anyone who applies for a licence. Bananas

from Commonwealth sources are assured of :- Larket in Britain and

shipments from other areas, "dollar bananas", are given 1 cences only

When there is a shortfall in Commonwealth supplies.

;The case was adjourned when the Ministry told the High Court that

ilicences for 1979/1980 would be issued within a few days and

iChris International Foods Ltd will not be discriminated against.

'According to "Fruit Trade Journal", Fyffes, Geest and Jamaica Producers

have not responded to the charge made by Chris International at a press

conference on August 31st. The Company charged that the monolopy

'allowed wholesalers,who supply the immigrant market, to be charged

nearly twice the price obtained in the ECC markets of West Germany,

Holland and Belgium.
(248 words)


'An important experiment at the Windward Islands Banana Associations'

(WINBAN) Experimental Farm at Roseau, Dominica, suffered serious

,damage when hurricane "David" swept through that island on Wednesday

'August 29th.

The experiment, which was two years old, was being carried out on a

Week Ending 15.9.79 THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Page 13

1.25 acre plot, and it was designed to investigate the relationship

between levels of fertilizer application and the control of


A recent WINBAN release says, however, that results of the experiment'

had begun to show already the importance of neamatode control.

"Small farmers who follow WINBAN's recommendations for fertilizer

application could reap 2.6 tons of fruit extra per acre per year if

neamatodes are controlled", the release says. "Without neamatode

control, these farmers would reap only 0.8 tons per acre per year".

Some interesting statistics have resulted from an assessment of the

damage done by "David" to the experimental plot. Uprooting of

mats in lots where there was no neamatode control amounted to

26-.9%, while in lots where there was control, uprooting was only

7.2%. In lots where there was o% fertilizer application and no

neamatode control, about 17% of the mats were toppled. Where

there was adequate fertilizer application -'id no control, losses rose

to 36%.

"This revealed", said the release, "that in cases where neamatode

control is neglected, money spent on fertilizer application is

(227 words)


The Pebple's Revolutionary Government (PRG) has published a list of

Public and Bank holidays, Official Days and a National Day to be

observed in 1980.

The Public and Bank Holidays are

January 1st New Year's Day
February 7th Independence Day
March 13th Grenada Revolution
April 4th Good Friday
April 7th Easter Monday
May 1st Labour Day
May 26th Whit Monday
June 25th Corpus Christi
August 4th Public Holiday
December 25th Christmas Day
December 26th Boxing Day

I The first Monday in August has, traditionally, been given as a

Page 14 THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 15.9.79

holiday to commemorate emancipation of slaves in 1838 and, no doubt,

the "Public Holiday" on August 4th, listed above, in a continuation

of this.

Until now, Grenadians have enjoyed holidays on the day after New Year's

Day, Easter Monday and the first Monday in August. These additional

holidays were introduced in the era when the island was an important

horse racing centre, and the additional day of holiday facilitated the

holding of two-day race meetings at New Year's, Easter and August.

The list now published eliminates these extra holidays.

Seven Official Days have been created, which Days will not be holidays

but will be recognized "by an official function or programme." These

Official Days are :-

January 21st Anniversary of "Bloody Monday"
Mar.- 2nd Fedon's Insurrection
April 20th Anniversary of Jeremiah
Richardson's death.
June 19th Uriah Batler/Alister Strachan Da.
November 7th Marryshow's Birthday.
November 18th Anniversary of "Bloody Sunday"
December 27th Harold Stiachan Day.

January 21st was the day in 1974 on which a peaceful anti-Gairy

demonstration was attacked by 500 of deposed Prime Minister Gairy's

'mongoose gang" of criminals supported by armed police. Prime

Minister Maurice Bishop's father, Rupert Bishop, was killed on that


In relating the start of the unsuccessful revolution led, in 1795,

by Julien Fedon against the British, the official Grenada Handbook

says, "At midnight on March 2nd 1795, the storm broke ......

This would appear to mean 12.00 o'clock, midnight, immediately

proceeding the morning of March 3rd, particularly as the Handbook

says the news of the revolution reached St.Georges on March 3rd.

While it would appear that the proper date for the Official Day

marking the Fedon Insurrection should have been March 3rd, this

has been fixed at March 2nd:

April 20th was the day in 1973 on which Jeremiah Richardson, a member

of the Now Jewel Movement was shot by a policeman. That policeman

Was tried, found guilty and condemned to death. That sentence was

subsequently commuted to life imprisonment.

Week Ending 15.9.79 THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Page 1

Grenada born T Uriah "Buzz" Butler was a prominent member of and

performed significant services to the trade union movement in

Trinidad. Alister Strachan was a member of the New Jewel

Movement who died by drowning in 1977 when the violent break up

of an NJM demonstration by the Grenada Defence Force caused him to

jump into the sea. This incident took place on June 19th.

Theophilus Albert Marryshow, during the early years of this

century, was an outstanding advocate of Westindian unity. He

was born on 7th November 1887.

On 18th November 1973, six members of the New Jewel Movement were

attacked by the "mongoose gang". Three of the attacked men,

including Mr Maurice Bishop, were badly beaten.

Harold Strachan, a member of the New Jewel Movement, was murdered

on 27th December 1973. He is alleged to have been shot by a

member of the "mongoose gang".

Cabinet has decided that, in addition to being a public holiday,

March 13th, the day on which the revolution took place, is to be a
National Day.
(589 words)

ister ghes
15th september 1979

Full Text