The Tribune.
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Title: The Tribune.
Uniform Title: Tribune. (Nassau, Bahamas).
Alternate Title: Nassau tribune
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 58 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Tribune
Publication Date: 03-03-2011
Spatial Coverage: Bahamas
General Note: Description based on: Vol. 79, no. 210 (Aug. 3, 1983); title from caption.
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Source Institution: University of Florida
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Resource Identifier: oclc - 09994850
oclc - 9994850
System ID: UF00084249:01736


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N ASSA U AND BAHAMA ISLANDS LEADING NEWSPAPER Criminally-minded paid in BTC pr otest V olume: 107 No.91FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011 PRICE 75 (Abaco and Grand Bahama $1.25 W EATHER SUNNY AND WINDY HIGH 78F LOW 65F S P O R T S SEESPORTSINSECTIONE Simone Pratt completes successful COSAT tour By NOELLE NICOLLS Tribune Staff R eporter nnicolls@ CRIMINALLYMINDED peoplew ere overheard to say t hey had been paid to participate in the BTC mass protest of Febru-a ry 23, according to the Police Staffers Association. A nd it is also undeniable t here were people in the crowd with potential criminal motives, said Dwight Smith, P olice Staff Association (PSA The association yes t erday called on politi cians to stop politicis ing the issue, because the observation of t hese participants by police was simply a part of their job to m aintain law and order and to ensure the safety of protest-e rs and observers. Mr Smith said the police had a difficulty with partici-p ants in the protest who had nothing to do with BTC, Police association claims some demonstrators were advancing political groups TRY OUR D OUBLE M cFISH The Tribune THEPEOPLESPAPER BIGGESTANDBEST L ATESTNEWSONWWW.TRIBUNE242.COM THEBAHAMASBIGGEST CARSFORSALE, HELPWANTED ANDREALESTATE I N S I D E SEE page eight STUDENTSPONDERCAREERMOVESATJOBFAIR B y TANEKA THOMPSON T ribune Staff Reporter T HE parents of a prema ture baby who died in the Princess Margaret Hospitalc laim they have been unable t o obtain their son's complete medical records documents they need in order to get a second opinion on their child's illnesses and cause of death. F or more than a year, Pantelis and Claudia Tsakkos PARENTS OF BABY WHO DIED IN PMH UNABLE TO GET COMPLETE MEDICAL RECORDS SEE page eight THE Utilities Regulation & Competition Authority last night approved Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC acquisition of a 51 per cent stake in the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC lessen competition in any of the services the state-owned incumbent currently offers. The industry regulator rejected concerns that CWC would use the extended three-year cellular monopoly to impede the growth of competition in other markets. SEE BUSINESS SECTION FOR FULL STORY URCAAPPROVES ACQUISITION OF BTC By TANEKA THOMPSON Tribune Staff Reporter POLICE were called to calm a group of road workers from the Jose Cartellone Construction Company who were outraged that they could not collect their wages from the bank yesterday. The group of more than 20 workers caused a scene at the Shirley Street location of Bank of The Bahamas after they were told their pay was not in their bank accounts. The men then left the bank and remained outside until officers quelled the rowdy crowd, police said. However, a representative from the company which was hired by the government to carry out the New Providence road improvement programme said the whole ordeal was a "misunder standing" because the men went to the bank a day early. After officers explained that their wages would be available at the bank today, the men left the scene peace POLICE C ALLED AFTER R OAD WORKERS TOLD PAY NOT IN THEIR BANK ACCOUNTS SEE page nine By CELESTE NIXON Tribune Staff Reporter A TOP official at the Ministry of Works says road closures will be unavoidable as the government works to complete several road improve ment jobs for the benefit of the entire island. During a press conference held yesterday to address con cerns expressed by business owners in the Prince Charles Drive and Fox Hill Road area, Permanent Secretary Colin Higgs explained that as a result of the physical constraints of the eastern corridor, some road closures and diversions are necessary and unavoidable. The roadworks on Fox Hill Road and Prince Charles Drive are part of the $120 million New Providence road improvement and infrastruc ture project. However, business owners in the area became angry over the loss of trade on Tuesday after contractors closed a portion of the road. But Mr Higgs insisted the works are necessary, not only to improve road networks and ROAD CLOSURES UNAVOIDABLE AS IMPROVEMENT WORK CONTINUES SEE page nine THEFIRSTSTEP: College of the Bahamas students line up to fill out job applications at a career and job fair yesterday. Norma Turnquest, co-ordinator of the fair, described it as a networking event for both students and businesses. SEEPAGEFIVE P h o t o / R o n n i e A r c h e r DWIGHT SMITH


L OCAL NEWS PAGE 2, FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011 THE TRIBUNE POLICE are asking the public to help them locate 37-yearold Randon Burrows who is wanted for questioning in rape and burglary investigations. Burrows, who also goes by the alias Randon Beaver, is known to have last resided at #74 Podoleo Street in New Providence. He is described as having a dark brown complexion; 5 tall and weighing about 160 lbs with a medium build. The Central Detective Unit warns that Burrows is considered armed and dangerous. Anyone with any information concerning Burrows whereabouts should immediately contact police by calling 919 or 911; the Central Detective Unit by calling 502-9930/9991; the Police Control Room on 322-3333; Crime Stoppers on 3288477; or contact the nearest police station. PUBLIC ASKED T O HELP LOCATE MAN WANTED FOR QUESTIONING RANDONBURROWS MINISTER of Labour Dion Foulkes said he was amazed by comments made by Perry Christie, leader of the opposition, about the governments initiative to support laid-off workers in Grand Bahama. He said: I would have thought that the opposition would have supported this initiative and commended the various agencies and departments participating including the private sector who came forward. Whenever you are terminated or dismissed, it is a very traumatic experience in a persons life. It is at that time that they need support and a helping hand. Employees To come out and to criticise what we did, I thought it was an insult to Grand Bahamas and especially to the former employees of Our Lucaya, said Mr Foulkes. He said the government found out about the layoffs just over a week ago. He said the matter was discussed in a Cabinet meeting that same morning, and the government came up with a plan. All of us agreed that we would not say anything publicly about it until the management had an opportunity to meet with the staff. That meeting was scheduled for Friday. We did not want staff members or family members of staff members finding out about this exercise through the House of Assembly or through a press release from the government. We thought that request wasa reasonable request, said Mr Foulkes. He said the government informed all of members of parliament from Grand Bahama, and instructed them not to say anything about it until the staff was first informed. He said the governments programme was approved last Thursday and assistance was rendered on Monday. I don't know what Mr Christie is talking about. But going on his past record I don't think he is in a position to criticise us in terms of our response. When hundreds of persons were laid-off at Royal Oasis here in Grand Bahama, the PLP did absolutely nothing to assist. Nothing. When we came to power in 2007 we had to complete the payment of severance pay to those workers. Millions of dollars we had to allocate in our budget millions of dollars, said Mr Foulkes. The Sea Hauler victims, when we came to power, we had to settle up with them. It was a ex-gracio payment. We were not forced to, but we thought that was the right thing to do. We thought that was the Christian thing to do and we gave those families $1 million. Criticism The CLICO employees, we have settled up with them, all of their legal entitlements. So I think that the criticism from the opposition, and in particular the leader of the opposition, is unfair and I think it is insensitive, especially when people are hurting, he said. Mr Foulkes noted that a delegation of PLP members went to Grand Bahama on Monday. He claimed they met only with the management of Our Lucaya. They did not take the time out to come down to the centre and meet with the workers who were fired. They didn't take a minute to stop there and meet the people. And they flew right back to Nassau. Zhivargo Laing, along with four other FNM parliamentarians, spent hours there, said Mr Foulkes. Minister amazed by Christies comments on laid-off workers initiative By NOELLE NICOLLS Tribune Staff Reporter VENDORS on Cabbage Beach say a lack of bathroom facilities on the beach is giving the country bad publicity and creating health con cerns. They claim most of the hundreds of tourists who use the Paradise Island beach on a daily basis are cruise ship passengers, who are forced to use the bush as a bathroom. Atlantis and RIU facilities are for guests only, they say, and bathrooms at the Sunrise Beach Club are limited to people who patronise the beach bar. It is am embarrassment. People always ask us where they can find the bathroom. You have no response, said one vendor. However, a spokesperson for Atlantis denied that only guests of the resort have access to its bathrooms. He said: Vendors and non-hotel guests on the eastern end of our property have access to the Cave Bar and Grill bathrooms and vendors and non-hotel guests on the western end of our prop erty have access to the bathroom facilities at the Lagoon Bar and Grill. Vendors are aware of this as they use our restroom facilities on a daily basis, as do cruise ship and non-hotel guests. Vendors say they wanted the bushy piece of vacant land near the RIU to be turned into a green space with public bathrooms. They claim a plan to use porta-potties was blocked because of the difficulty in creating access for persons to service the units. The Ministry of Tourism and Aviation (MOTA braiders, coconut vendors, those who rent out lounge chairs, massage therapists to operate on the beach. One operator said the peak day is Saturday, when 300-plus visitors use the beach. Vincent Vanderpool-Wallace, Minister of Tourism, said he is certainly aware of the con cern. He said there is no doubt the issue needs to be addressed as a priority, but added it would involve much more than just putting toilets on the beach. It is a subject of much discussion. We wish there was a simple resolution, said Mr Vander pool-Wallace, citing property rights as one of the main obstacles. When asked for comment on the issue, Ministry of Environment officials pointed out that the beach is not public, so the government is not responsible for managing the beach or providing public bathroom facilities. According to an informed Tribune source, legally speaking, members of the public have a limited right to traverse the coast up to the high water mark, but this does not mean all beaches are public despite the widespread popular belief to the contrary. Beaches are public only when they sit on Crown Land. Private land owners are not obligated to provide beach access for the public. The source said the public cannot have access to all beaches without a change in the law. With respect to Cabbage Beach, he said, vendors, visitors and members of the public dont have a right to it, even though there is an arrangement between Atlantis, the MOTA, ven dors, and the public. A vendor said: We have been given permis sion by the Ministry of Tourism. (The hotels can't kick us off the beach, but they can give us a very difficult time. The tide can be very volatile, so sometimes people have to encroach on hotel property by putting their lounge chairs there. Even though the area is not being utilised, in the past they have had their security take away everything we had on the beach. They can make it difficult for you, because they can always con fiscate your stuff. It is a serious balance we have to weigh. In the meantime, the guests are being affected aversely in that regard, he said. Mr Vanderpool-Wallace said FNM governments have negotiated unprecedented beach access for the public, with a comprehensive sys tem of signs designating public access areas. He said the government received a fight in some instances from private land owners, so it had the difficult task of balancing interests. He said the government is also mindful of capacity concerns. We have a situation right now on public holidays where there are certain beaches that reach capacity level. We have to as a government, decide what is going to be the maximum use of any private or public space, he said. Vendors say lack of Cabbage Beach bathrooms creating health concerns MINISTER OF LABOUR Dion Foulkes PLPLEADER Perry Christie A WHOPPING 1 5-pound crawfish (spiny lobster) was caught by fishermen and brought to The Tribune this week. Lllewelyn Fox proudly d isplays the lobster, which he said his son purc hased on Potters Cay dock. P HOTO/ R ONNIE ARCHER MONSTER CRAWFISH


PAUL G TURNQUEST bune Staff Reporter W I TH c ivi l unr es t b r e wing t h e T u r k s a n d C a i c o s a n d s P L P M P F r e d c he ll c a lled on the B ritis h ern m ent to restore parlian tar y d emocr acy an d b rin g en d i t s t w o y e a r s t i n t i n ec t cont rol of that na tion. o r the pa st f ew da ys prot e r s i n t h e T u r k s a n d i c o s h a v e t a k e n t o t h e ee t s de m anding a n e n d t o a dministra tion hea d e d by B r i t is h g ov e r n or wh i c h s b e e n i n p l a c e s i n c e gus t 2 00 9 Th e i s l a n d s a r e a B r i t i s h ers e a s Te r r it or y a nd t he K g o v e r n m e n t d i s b a n d e d loc a l ly e le c t e d a dm i n is i on a n d su s p e n de d its le gt u r e a f te r a C om m is s io n In quir y found w ides pre a d r uption unde r the a dminat io n of t he i s la n ds f or r Pre m ier Mic hae l Misic k. N o ti ng th a t t he PL P has fo r m e tim e bee n is suin g sta ten t s o n t h i s m a t t e r M r c hell reiter ated his party's i t ion th a t the Britis h we re o n g in takin g awa y d e mocy in the T u r ks and Ca icos I t is no t an issue wh ic h we u g h t would g o a wa y g ive n d i s q u i e t o n b o t h s i d e s ou t w h a t t h e B r i t i s h h a s n e. A nd the l o ng e r it goe s t he mor e the re is g o i ng t o in t e rna l pre s sure pa rt icuy g iv e n the s uspe nsion of m e of the rules of j ustic e as el a te s t o t he off enc e s the y in v e s t i g a t i n g a n d m o r e p or ta ntly the fa ct that the t i s h ca nnot s a y whe n the y re stor e dem oc ra cy T hose w ho ha ve tal k e d to r om th e Turks and Caic o s n d s we h a v e sa id to t h e m t it is im port ant for the m ge t t og e th e r a n d t o p uby d e m ons t r a te t he ir c onn abo ut th e fact th at d irect e sti ll e xists a n d there is no m e t a b l e f o r a r e t u r n t o m o c r a c y A n d s o w e a r e s urprise d. A ll th a t we sa y t i t s h o u l d b e p e a c e f u l y s h ould c o ntinue to w o r k t r y t o g e t d e m o c r a c y t o r e d a n d w e u r g e t h e ti s h t o r e s t o r e d e m o c r a he sa id. M r Mi tc he l l a dd e d tha t it o f pa r a m oun t im po rt a nc e t the pe op l e of the Turks d Ca ic os re m ain unite d in s tru g gle, as a "on e-sid ed" t e s t w i l l no t g e t t he j o b n e The p e ople of t he Tur ks d C a i c o s I s l a n d s h a v e t o m o n s t r a t e t o g e t h e r t h a t y a re c o ncerned abo ut th is u e T h e r e i s t h e C A R I M meet i n g w h i ch j u s t to o k ce or is com ing up, a nd I en 't seen th e resu lts o f th e e t in g ; t h e i nt e r s e s s i o na l t t oo k pl a c e I t hi nk our p uty pr ime m inis te r w ent d I w a s hoping t hat a t t hat t i m e t h e p a r t i e s f r o m t h e T u r k s a n d C a i c o s I s l a n d s would ha v e both g one to the m e e t i n g a n d m a d e s o m e at te mpt to hav e C A RI CO M i s s u e e v e n s t r o n g e r s t a t e me nts wit h re g ar d to this A nd w e ha ve under ta ke n with t he pa r tie s i n the Turks a n d C a i c o s I s l a n d s t o d o wha te ve r we c a n to as sis t i n try ing to g e t t h e m in c onta ct w i th o t h er go ver n men ts i n th e Ca ribbe a n, and a ls o the g overn m en t h e re i n the B a h a mas to tr y a n d pu t som e a dd it io nal pr es sur e on the Br itis h t o re solv e this iss ue ," he s ai d. NOELLE NICOLLS bune Staff Reporter T HE Poli ce Staf fe rs A ss ocio n has as ked for an apol ogy m Fr ed Mi t ch el l op pos i t i on k es man on t h e pu bl ic sere f o r w ha t t h e y b e l i e v e w e r e p a r a g i ng c o m m e n t s h e m a d e u t t he S ec u r it y and I n t ell ic e B ranch. Dwig h t S m ith P S A p r e si t said equati n g the invest i ve pr oces s of SIB of fi cer s in g v e tti n g o f p u b lic s e r t s t o "g oss i p a nd t ri v i a" i s a agai ns t t he i nte gri ty of t he c e W e wi sh not for an y gov m en t or po l i t i c al o ppo s i t i on u s e t he poli ce as a t ool f or i t ical a gen das Sup er int en t R o be r t Y ou n g, w h o he a d s B is doi ng a wonderf u l j o b. e n you m ake a bol d s taten t s peaking t o thei r i nteg ri y ou destr o y the m o r ale o f e n t i r e t e a m s a i d M r i t h. E a r l i e r t h i s w e e k M r tc h e l l c a u t i o n e d a g a i n s t ng SI B rep o rts a s th e pr i r y b asis for d ecision mak H e s ai d t he c omm on pr acwas f or SIB reports to be e vated in the minds of the e auc racy t o t o o high a levT he PSA sa id i t is not t ryi ng t o be a t u p on a n y o n e w h e t h e r g o v e r nm en t o r t he o p po s i t i o n ", bu t it ha s a re sp o n s ib ilit y to a d d r e ss c o n c e rn in g i s s u e s t h at are "d i rect a nd p ersona l w it h the p ol ic e", and s peak to w ork cond i ti ons an d moral e. He sai d publi c servant s are of ten the i nnocent byst and er s i n pol it ical squabb l es. Mr Smi th cl aime d r an k and f i l e of f ic er s f rom t he SI B cam e to th e ass o cia tio n to e xp re ss t h e i r d i s c o n t e n t w i t h M r Mi tc h el l 's comm en t s. H e s t r e s s e d t h a t h e w a s s peaki ng on behal f of t he PSA a n d n o t t h e P o li c e F o r c e o r S I B M r S m i t h s a id h e a n d M r Y o ung di d not di s c us s t he m a t t er. "We have a gr ave di ffi cul ty w ith what is being sai d No w we h a v e t o g o a n d mo ti v a te o ff i c er s at SI B w ho a re doi ng a w onderful j ob. T here must be an apo l o gy given to the hard wo r k in g me n a n d wo me n a t t he R BPF," sai d Mr Smi th. H e s a i d th e p o l i c e r u n a n in fo rm ati on ba s ed o p e ra tio n t h a t r e l i e s o n c o o p e r a t i o n f r o m t he pu bl i c a nd an y a c t i on tha t u nfa irly cre ate s c on ce rn abo ut the comp eten cy o f the p o li c e o n l y s e rv e s t o u n d e rm ine the force. W h e n c o n t a c t e d f o r c o m m en t, S IB he ad O f fi c er Yo ung s ai d he doesn' t t hink a ny act ual d ama ge ha s b een d on e b y Mr Mi tc h el l 's comm en t s. H e a d d e d : N o v e t t i n g pr ocess is based on hears ay or g o s s i p Y ou c a n no t m a l i g n p e o p le 's cha rac te r or i mpe de t hei r jo b p r o g r e s s o n t h e b a s is o f gos sip. W e w ou l d n ot oper ate on that f ashion. "A l l of t he r epo rt s ar e con f i de nti al Whate ver i nf orm ati on w e get we veri fy t hat i nform at i o n H e s a id a n y f u r t h e r c o m m ent w oul d ha ve t o be s ough t f r o m t h e C o m m i s s i o n e r o f P o l i c e R e s p o n d i n g t o t h e S t a f f As s o c ia t io n y e st e rd a y a ft e rnoon, Mr Mit chell sai d: "Any and all of the com ments made by me at an y ti me are d i rec ted at po l it ic ians and po l ic ies and n o t a t p u b l i c s e r v a n t s T h e c om m e nt s a r e a b o u t p u bl i c po l i c y. T h a t s ho u l d be c r y s t a l c l e a r f r o m t h e c o n t e n t a nd c o n t e x t o f t he r emarks. "T he pol i ce as a di sc ipl i ned f or ce ar e t o be neut ral in t hei r r e s p o n s e s a n d r e a c t i o n s t o t h e s e m a t t e r s T h a t i s i n t h e v e r y n atur e of a d is ci pl ine d for ce. "I e xp ect th at the Sec urity a nd I nte ll i genc e B ran ch of t he R o yal Bah amas P olice Fo rce wi l l c onti nue t o conduc t t hem s elv es in the sa me p olitic ally neutr al and above board f as hion as t hei r t rai ni ng di ct at es, he sai d. P o l i c e o f f i c e r s d o n o t d a b b l e in pol i t i ca l m at t er s. As a pol i t i ci an, I have t ri ed s cr upul ousl y t o a v oi d a t i t f o r t a t w i t h p ub l i c ser vant s, w ho mus t ser ve PPS, F NMs an d i n bet weens. T hat is the na t u re of t h eir job s, to se r v e a l l w i t h ou t f e a r o r f a vo ur I do not i nt end t o s ta rt now. LOCAL NEWS HE TRIBUNE FRIDA Y MARCH 1 1, 201 1, P AGE L AWRE NCE Har ri son al ias L awren c e A mbr is ter al ias Ver nal Ambr is ter 4 o f Sand ilands Vil lage Roa was arr aigned in Cour t 11 yes ter day, char ged with m aking deat h th reat s. I t is alleged t hat he mad t he th reat s t o Shas hun a Ru ss ell on Tu esday, Mar c 1 I t is fur th er all eged tha h e ass ault ed Shas hun a Ru s ell wit h a han dgun. Har ris on, w h o was ar r aigned bef or e Magis tr a S ubu S w ain pleaded not gu ilty t o bo th char ges. He was grant ed $1,000 b ail on the t hreat s o f deat an d $3,000 bail on t he as s ault char ge. T he case has been ad jour ned t o Au gust 22, 2 0 1 1 Man arraigned i c o u r t o n c h a r g of death threats cour t NEWS P o l i c e S t a f f e r s A s s o c i a t i o n a s k s M i t c h e l l f o r a p o l o g y M i t c h e l l c a l l s o n U K g o v t t o r e s t o r e p a r l i a m e n t a r y d e m o c r a c y i n T u r k s & C a i c o s DESTR OY IN G MOR A L E: P o l i ce S taff ers A ssoci ati o n p r esident Dwi ght Sm i th hel d a p res s co nfe re nce t o a sk f or an ap ol ogy f r om P LP M P F r e d Mit ch el l Ronnie A rcher / P h o t o


E DITOR, The Tribune. T odays article by Rick Lowe (limit taxation and spending) contains many current observations about the current tax regime and the proposed alternative val-u e added tax (VAT H owever, Lowe and the Nassau Institute like the commentators he criticises fail to recognise the different impact taxes have on the three factors of production namely land (free gifts of nature), labour (human exertion in the production of wealth) and capital ( wealth used to make more w ealth). Left wing propos als call for society to take most of the wealth created, making no distinction b etween the income from l and, labour or capital and leaving only a small portion of wealth to individuals. In most cases this also entails a large measure of control by society over individuals, a planned economy and lack of individual freedom. Right wing proposals (reflect tax wealth should remain in pri vate hands but also makes no distinction between land, labour and capital. Government should get the minimum it needs for necessary services and leave the run ning of the economy to private interests. A mixed economy seeks to distribute wealth and power between individuals and society but does not make a distinction between earned and unearned incomes nor does it define the proper roles of society and the individual. The result is usually a hodgepodge. The American economist Henry George does make a d istinction between the u nearned income from land (nature incomes of labour and capital. No one created nature ( beaches, reefs, fresh water e tc) but the presence and activity of society creates location value. A just society would capture the location value for society and let the wealth created by labour and capital remain in the hands of these that earned it. The Geologist proposal achieves the goal of left wingers for security and social action but without restrictions on liberty. It achieves the goal of right wingers to attain freedom but without privilege and monopoly. This tax shift would remove the unearned income from natural resource speculation, slow urban sprawl, reduce pollution and pay for infrastructure that helped create land values in the first place. All this would happen without stifling incentive and pro ductivity. JOHN FISHER Nassau, February 21, 2011. EDITOR, The Tribune. I wonder what it is going to take for we the people of thisn ation to migrate from the valley of blame to the highh ills of responsibility for ourselves and for improving the c ulture of this country. Culture is more than annual festivals, traditions, music, crafts or native dishes. Cul-t ure also embodies we the p eople of this nation; our t houghts, attitudes, beliefs, confidence, the point of our social compass, the quality of our language and the way we behave. It appears that we h ave become so wrapped up in our supposed rights that we are either unaware or simplyc hoose to ignore that our r ights also come with an i nherent social responsibility. T his critical aspect of our evolution remains undeveloped,r ather than taking responsibility for ourselves, we are m ore easily led to fight for rights based on the fallacy that someone else is theb lame for our laid-back perceptions. The daily servings of prog rammes that happily remind us of our issues, problems or t he basic lack of social order only highlights our point of f ocus. That we are a pess imistic people, who are much more comfortable, looking for what, is wrong, rather than l ooking to resolve. This bleak p erception shows our lack of preparation for change, lack of critical thinking, gratituded eficiency and a severe shortage of ideas. We cannot find solutions if w e are only focused on the p roblems. The acceptance of personal responsibility is what separates the adult from the c hild. We owe it to our children to put away childish things. Ifw e are sincerely interested in s upposedly saving the future for our children, we should begin with the thousands of children who are here right now. Why arent we teaching t hem the audacity of change or the power of personal responsibility? This thoughtpattern would build their confidence to choose their own future, long after we are gone. The need for us to migrate t owards a culture of responsibility is an appeal from the spirit of this Bahama Land.W hose moral fiber cringes every time we utter a complaint or point to a problem without voicing a solution. Itsm essage is clear. It reminds us that it has already given us this land; it has provided unlimited resources and bestowed inborn talents uponu s. The question we must ask o urselves is what have we given in return to this land? W hat ideas have we produced, created or brought forth to inspire our children or to change the world? Thisl and is pleading that we do n ot sell our children on the s mall ideals of problems and challenges. Instead, it beseeches us to inspire them to accept that they embody great ideas and the courage t o take responsibility for working the land and building this nation. W e all know that the only w ay to get up the hill is to c limb. For us to evolve as a p eople and advance this nation we must elevate ourt hinking, climb out of the valley of blame and cultivate a n ew culture of responsibility. Our Bahama land is dehydrated and in urgent need of ap ositive, healthier perception. And the spirit of this land insists that we all quench itst hirst by heeding this call to migrate forward, upward, o nward together. People, its time to move! M ICHELLE M MILLER Nassau, March 7, 2011. E DITORIAL/LETTERS TO THE EDITOR P AGE 4, FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011 THE TRIBUNE The Tribune Limited NULLIUS ADDICTUS JURARE IN VERBA MAGISTRI Being Bound to Swear to The Dogmas of No Master LEON E. H. DUPUCH, Publisher/Editor 1903-1914 SIR ETIENNE DUPUCH, Kt., O.B.E., K.M., K.C.S.G., (Hon. Publisher/Editor 1919-1972 Contributing Editor 1972-1991 EILEEN DUPUCH CARRON, C.M.G., M.S., B.A., LL.B. Publisher/Editor 1972Published Daily Monday to Saturday Shirley Street, P.O. Box N-3207, Nassau, Bahamas Insurance Management Building., P.O. F-485, Freeport, Grand Bahama T ELEPHONES Switchboard (News, Circulation and Advertising) 322-1986 WEBSITE w updated daily at 2pm GROZNY, Russia The cars pull up in broad daylight. Security forces point guns a t terrified women and shoot. It turns out they're paintball pellets, but still harsh puni shment in Chechnya for leaving home without a headscarf. Chechnya's strongman Ramzan Kadyrov has imposed an Islamic dress code on women, and his feared security forces have used paintball guns, threats and insults against those refusing to obey. In a 40-page r eport released Thursday, Human Rights Watch condemned the campaign as a flagrant violation of women's rights and urged other nations to raise the issue with Moscow. "The enforcement of a compulsory Islamic dress code on women in Chechnya violates their rights to private life, personal autonomy, freedom of expression, and freedom of religion, thought, and conscience," the report s aid. "It is also a form of gender-based discrimination prohibited under international treaties to which Russia is a party." Kadyrov rules with the support of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, who has counted on him to stabilize the mostly Muslim region in southern Russia after two separatist wars in the last 16 years. Russian authorities have turned a blind eye to the treatment ofw omen and other rights abuses in Chech nya. Human Rights Watch interviewed dozens of women who have experienced or witnessed attacks or harassment for their refusal to adhere to the Islamic dress code. One of the victims, identified as Louiza, told the rights group that she and a friend were attacked while walking down PutinA venue in Grozny on a hot day last June, wearing skirts a little below the knee, blouses with sleeves a bit above the elbow and no headscarves. Suddenly a car without a licence plate pulled up, its side window rolled down and a gun barrel pointed at them. "I thought the gun was real and when I heard the shots I thought: 'This is death,'" she recalled in the report. "I felt somethingh itting me in the chest and was sort of thrown against the wall of a building. "The sting was awful, as if my breasts were being pierced with a red-hot needle, but I wasn't fainting or anything and suddenly noticed some strange green splattering on the wall and this huge green stain was also expanding on my blouse." The 25-year-old woman said her friend was hit on her legs and stumbled to the ground. Men dressed in the black uniform of Kadyrov's security forces looked out of the car's windows, laughing and sneering. "It's only at home that I could examine the bruise and it was so huge and ugly," L ouiza recalled. "Since then, I don't dare leave home without a headscarf." A nother target, a 29-year-old woman whose name was not given, said she was walking down the same central avenue in June with two other women, all without headscarves, when two cars stopped nearby and bearded men in black uniforms fired paintball guns at them, screaming: "Cover y our hair, harlots!" The woman told Human Rights Watch that she knows 12 women who were shot at with paintball guns in June. Overall, at least 50 or 60 women were targeted, the rights group said. Threatening leaflets also appeared on the streets of Grozny, warning women that those who fail to wear head scarves could face "more persuasive meas ures." The women interviewed by Human Rights Watch interpreted that as a threat to use real weapons. Kadyrov's security force has been blamed by rights activists for abductions, torture and extrajudicial killings in Chechnya. In July 2009, the director of the Chechen office of Russia's Memorial rights group, was abducted near her home in Grozny andf ound shot to death along a roadside a few hours later. Natalya Estemirova had pub licly criticized the Islamic dress campaign as a violation of Russian law, angering Kadyrov who had threatened her with repercussions. A few weeks after the paintball shootings, Kadyrov told local television that he was ready to give awards to the men who carriedo ut the attacks and that the targeted women deserved the treatment. There was no response from the federal authorities. The paintball attacks ended in mid-June, having achieving Kadyrov's objective. The majority of women are now too scared to enter the centre of Grozny without head scarves or dare to complain against the "virtue campaign." A t Chechen State University in Grozny this week, all females students wore headscarves and, toeing the official line, defended the practice as part of local tradition and a sign of respect for Islam. "The headscarf is part of our religion, part of our faith," said Seda Sabarova, 18. Kadyrov also scoffed at criticism of his effort to enforce an Islamic dress code, telling foreign reporters that headscarves make women beautiful. (This article was written by VladimirI Isachenkov of the Associated Press). Migrating from a culture of blame to responsibility LETTERS l Women abused if refuse to cover head Looking at the tax regime EDITOR, The Tribune. LAST night, the 4th of March, at 1.30am my power went off. I thought it might just be the usual power failure but no, it was just our house. I called the BEC power failure number and got a very polite and professional lady to answer. She took my info and said shed have a truck there ASAP. True to her words a truck was there within 10 minutes. I went out onto the road to make sure the guys knew it was my house that was without power. They also were very polite and professional. My power was restored soon after the truck arrived. A few minutes after the power was restored, the phone rang and to my surprise it was the lady from BEC calling me back to make sure my power was back on. Most of the time people have bad things to say about BEC, so I want to say Thank You to the BEC staff that helped me, for their quick and professional response. I wish I had asked for her name so I could thank her. AMANDA MEYERS Nassau, March 4, 2011. Thank you to helpful BEC staff


By LAMECH JOHNSON COLLEGE of the Bahamas students participated in a career and job fair yesterday, where they were they learned about what opportunities await them in the public and private sector. Norma Turnquest, co-ordinator of the fair, described it as a networking event for both students and businesses. The purpose of the event is to bring the students and businesses together, she said. Ms Turnquest believes the students will benefit from learning about the different careers available to them based on their field of study. She was pleased with the turn-out from students and businesses. We have 33 companies represented so we are quite pleased with the numbers. And the students seem to be enjoying it too. She was unsure how many companies have already decided to hire some of the students they met with, though she added, some companies have already posted job recruitments on their websites. Some students spoke with The Tribune about what they learned and experienced at the fair. Kaynell Dames, an accounting major at COB, was impressed by the amount of information available. It was great. There were a lot of options for me in the accounting field and I learned about scholarship opportunities provided by KPMG. R Ellis Farrington III, a freshman at COB, said the event was dominated by business and finance companies. Im a freshman so its really an enhancing experience to have an event that open doors for us. T hey dont have stalls that present the law though. CIS majors like Ashaki Adderley found the fair to be very informative and said it made them aware of the different organisations out there. Representatives of the busin esses told T he Tribune t hey came to see the future crop of workers that would soon be leaving school. S elvin Basden, senior manager of human resources at the Bank of the Bahamas, said the bank is growing and were seeking new talent. He mentioned that the bank is currently hiring students on a part-time basis and that students f rom the Family Islands in particular will greatly benefit from this opportunity. We have branches in Inagua, E xuma and South Andros. Students from South Andros for example that want to go back home to work can do so because we have branches there in Mangrove Cay and Kemps Bay. Other private institutions such as ScotiaBank, First C aribbean Bank, RBC, Doctors Hospital, Deloitte and Touche a nd Burns House Ltd were also in attendance. Among the government agencies represented were the Central Bank of the Bahamas, BTC, the Water and Sewerage Corporation, the National InsuranceB oard, Bahamasair, the Defence Force, the Police Force. Officers from the Fire Branch were also there and brought their fire engine with them. They used a long grass track to give the students a taste of whata fire run is like. The fair was held at Independ ence Park on the colleges Thompson Boulevard campus. LOCAL NEWS T HE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011, PAGE 5 COB students learn about employment opportunities By NATARIO McKENZIE Tribune Staff Reporter A MAN who admitted to chopping his friend to death with a cutlass during an argument two years ago was sentenced to 13 years in prison yesterday. On Wednesday, Maitland Thompson, 28, pleaded guilty to manslaughter by provocation in the death of Customs Officer Collier Knowles, 33. Thompson was initially charged with murdering his friend, but accepted a plea deal. Knowles died in hospital on June 2, 2009 after being chopped about the body nine times, according to prosecutors. Thompson told the court yesterday: I am truly and deeply sorry. I really didnt mean to kill this man. I really tried to walk away. I just want the court to be lenient. Senior Justice Jon Isaacs noted that Thompson in seeking to defend himself from Knowles went beyond what was necessary and thus self-defence could not be his legal defence. The judge, however, also noted that Thompson had been provoked in his actions and that his case was not one in which the maximum penalty ought to be imposed. Given the injuries sustained by the deceased, it is clear you would have gone too far, Senior Justice Isaacs said. In his sentencing, he also took into consideration the two years Thompson has already spent in prison. Thompsons sentence is to commence from January 1, 2011. According to prosecutors, on June 1, 2009, Thompson, Knowles and several friends were at a bar in Pinewood Gar dens. An argument reportedly broke out and Knowles left the bar. The argument con tinued at Cottonwood Street, Pinewood Gardens, where friends intervened and separated the two men. According to prosecutors, Knowles was subsequently seen walking with a cutlass. The argument between the two men continued on Willow Tree Avenue and Saffron Street. There, Thompson reportedly wrestled the cutlass away from Knowles and chopped him nine times about the body. Knowles was reportedly chopped to the head, left eye, right shoulder, left calf, left hand, right thigh and right arm. His cause of death was listed as hemorrhagic shock as a result of blood loss from chop wounds. Thompson was later arrested at a local motel on Carmichael Road. Thompsons attorney Romona Sey mour submitted yesterday that her client was angry and drunk at the time of the incident. She told the court that Thompson was not aware of how many times he had chopped Knowles. According to Mrs Seymour, Thompson had thought he had chopped Knowles three times. She also asked the judge to take into consideration the fact that Thompson had pleaded guilty to the manslaughter charge and had been forthright with police from the start of their investigation. She further submitted that her client had told police that he did not intend to kill Knowles and that his death was an accident. She asked the court to take into consideration the fact that Thompsons actions were not premeditated and that he had been defending his life, but went too far. Ms Seymour told the court that Thompson, a father of two, had expressed remorse and asked that the court be as lenient as possible. MAN GETS 13 YEARS FOR CHOPPING FRIEND TO DEATH WITH CUTLASS COB STUDENTS pose with a fire engine at yesterdays career and job fair. Photo/ Ronnie Archer


L OCAL NEWS P AGE 6, FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011 THE TRIBUNE By MATT MAURA Bahamas Information S ervices PUBLIC Health officials worldwide have been able to confirm an inextricable link between kidney disease andc ardiovascular disease, Mini ster of Health Dr Hubert Minnis said Wednesday. The Health Minister said local public health officials will join their international colleagues in further study-i ng the relationship between c hronic kidney disease as a major risk-factor for cardiovascular disease. The announcement came as the world celebrated W orld Kidney Day yesterday. A joint initiative of the International Society ofN ephrology and the International Federation of Kidney Foundations, World Kidney Day is used to further raise awareness of the importance of ones kidneys to their overall health. The day also aims to reduce the frequency and impact of kidney disease andi ts associated health probl ems worldwide; to encourage preventative behaviours among world citizens and to educate all medical professionals about the key rolest hey play in detecting and r educing the risks of chronic k idney disease, particularly in high risk populations. Risk Public health officials said there are seven golden rules persons can use tor educe their risk of developing kidney disease. Critical among those rules are to keep fit and active;k eep regular control of blood sugar levels; monitor blood pressure levels; eat healthya nd check kidney function if you have one or more of the high risk factors. Drinking water regularly is also important to maintaining healthy kidney function. Dr Minnis said a statement f rom the American Heart A ssociation confirmed that, cardiovascular disease begins to have an effect on the body as early as the first stage of kidney disease andm ost people with end-stage r enal failure die as a result of c ardiovascular complications. Chronic, non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and/or hypertension or highb lood pressure, contribute to r enal diseases. Both are prevalent in the Bahamas. Dr Minnis said research shows that intensive control of diabetes and highb lood pressure can prevent or delay the onset of kidney disease. Cognisant of these facts, the Government of theB ahamas has collaborated w ith the private healthcare sector in implementing the National Chronic Disease Prescription Drug Plan, Dr Minnis said. This Plan allows patients w ith a history of chronic conditions such as diabetes and hypertension to access their medications to aid compliance and preservation of kid-n ey function. Prevention It is vital that other strateg ies that make the most of our fiscal, capital and human resources be implemented and supported at the national level to ensure prevention,e arly detection and management of this debilitating and life-threatening condition, Dr Minnis added. T o help combat the problem and promote education and awareness, public healtho fficials in the Bahamas this week began celebrating Renal Awareness and Education Week. Several major a ctivities have been planned i ncluding a workshop on chronic kidney disease for public health nurses that has been endorsed by the Royal College of Nursing in Lon-d on; England; a public debate on kidney disease and a speech competition on thet opic How we maintain Kidn ey Health for high school students. Dr Minnis applauded offic ials at the Department of Public Health and the Public H ospitals Authority for their e fforts in raising public awareness. Patients and family members need to have a better understanding of how to pre-v ent kidney disease and how to manage existing conditions, he said. In addition, healthcare p rofessionals require more training to ensure early detection and appropriate mana gement. Health officials explore inextricable link between kidney and heart disease INEXTRICABLE LINK: H ealth Minister Dr Hubert Minnis By MATT MAURA Bahamas Information Services THE government of the Bahamas spends almost 15 million dollars annually to provide free dialysis treat m ent to 330 persons with kidney disease, health officials revealed. This figure does not include costs associated with medications and/or hospital stays as a result of associat e d complications. Dialysis treatment is predominantly used to manage kidney disease in the Bahamas and costs $45,000 per p atient per year. Recent data confirms that there are more than 330 persons in the Bahamas receiving free dialysis treatment as a result of kidney disease. Thet otal cost to treat those persons is $14,850,000. P ublic Health officials said the 330 figure does not include persons who are unknown to nephrology ser vices for whatever reason. They said the number of p ersons with kidney problems is likely to increase as more and more Bahamians become more at-risk for the disease due to the high prevalence of chronic, non-com m unicable diseases such as diabetes and hypertension two leading causes for kidney disease in the Bahamas. Chronic, non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and hypertension or high blood pressure can be pre v ented through proper diet and exercise. Minister of Health Dr Hubert Minnis said while the Government has implemented and will continue to implement new strategies to help battle kidney disease and reduce the heavy costs associated with the treat ment and management of the disease, the onus is on every single Bahamian, particularly those at-risk per sons to ensure that they adopt healthy lifestyles to prevent life threatening illnesses such as kidney dis-e ase. Dr Minnis said research has shown that intensive control of diabetes and high blood pressure can prevent the onset of kidney disease. Simple choices like eating a balanced diet, engaging in regular exercise and having an annual physical exam ination are all necessary to help prevent the disease, Dr Minnis said. It is also necessary for individuals who fall within high-risk groups for renal disease to get tested for the disease in order to facilitate early detection and prompt treatment and monitoring, Dr Minnis added. The Health Minister said conditions such as diabetes and hypertension have contributed to a rise in renal diseases in the Bahamas. The two are prevalent among Bahamians. He said public health officials have launched a series of education and awareness programmes designed to educate members of the public on the implications of the incidence of chronic kidney disease in the country and to ensure that the disease may be prevented, where possible, or to ensure early detection, timely referraland safe and effective client care. As knowledge and understanding of the causes of kidney failure increases, so does the ability to predictand prevent kidney disease increases, Dr Minnis added. Government spends $15 million annually on dialysis treatment ADJUDICATIONS for the E Clement Bethel National Arts Festival continued in Freeport this week, drawing students from the islands schools who showed off theirm usical talents. It was the second week of Grand Bahama a djudications which are now coming to a close. T ALENTED STUDENTS TAKE TO THE STAGE FOR ADJUDICATIONS ERIC ROSE/BIS ABOVE: Liam Brown of the Lucaya International School plays the trumpet during the adjudications in Freeport, Grand Bahama, for the E Clement Bethel National Arts Festival. TOP: An ensemble from St Paul's Methodist College plays the jazz piece "Santa Baby" during the adjudications in Freeport. LEFT: Walter Parker Primary School student Lincoln Alleyne beats out a solo in the Best Drummer category during the adjudications in Freeport, Grand Bahama for the E Clement Bethel National Arts Festival. Share your news The T ribune wants to hear from people who are making news in their neighbourhoods. Perhaps you ar e raising funds for a good cause, campaigning for impr ovements in the area or have won an award. If so, call us on 322-1986 and shar e your stor y


By MEGAN REYNOLDS Tribune Staff Reporter A GR OU P of bonefis hing gu i d es s ee k i n g t o p r o t ec t a v it al fis hing g r ound in South Aba c o is c a ll ing on the g ove rn m e nt t o ta k e a cti on be fo re de velopers m ove in. T h e A b a c o F l y F i s h i n g G u id e Asso cia ti on (A FF GA ) h a s p rop os ed t he g o ve rn me n t d ec la r e a r o und 1 ,80 0 a c res of C r o w n L a n d c o a s t l i n e a n d w e t l a n d s s t r e t c h i n g f r o m Cross Ha rbou r to Bla ckwoo d P o i n t a n o b u i l d z o n e a s i t supports a 1 ,000 hectar e wetla nd area, local fis hi ng industries and the luc rative c a t cha nd-rele ase s p ort le d by lo c a l fly-fis hing guides. A F F G A p r e s i d e n t P a u l P i n d e r s e n t a l e t t e r t o t h e P r i m e M i n i s t e r s O f f i c e i n Oc t o b er 2 00 9, w o n s u p po r t f ro m th e Mi n i st ry o f th e En v i r on me n t a nd s u bm it t e d t h e propos a l t o t he Depart m ent of P hy s ical Planning in April la s t yea r T he ass oc iati on maint ains they w ere asked to resubmit th ei r a pp li c at io n m or e t han o n ce bo t h i n p r in t a n d o n l i ne a n d y e t h a v e h e a r d n o r e s p o n s e f r o m t h e g o v e r n m ent depart m ent. Direc tor of P hy s ical Planning Mic ha el Major said t he a pp lica tion cam e to hi s a tten ti on o n W edne sd ay, f ol low in g c a ll s f r om Th e T r i bu ne and he w il l now ini ti ate th e proc ess of c r e ati ng a z oning o r d e r "Mo s t of the time whe n w e g e t re qu ests lik e tha t the y are le gi ti m at e an d r e as o na bl e, Mr Major said. A r evi e w o f t he pr o po s al will be completed next wee k, he s aid. T h e d e t a i l s w i l l t h e n b e p u b l i c i s e d gi v i n g p e o p l e a ch a n ce to re sp on d, an d t he n a draft pr o pos al will be drawn up and sent to the Attor ney Gener al' s o ff ic e f or v ett ing, befor e go ing to the C abinet for fi na l appr ov al in around two months When asked w hy the proposal h ad taken mor e than a y e a r t o c r o s s h i s d e s k M r Ma jo r s ai d: "I c an t s a y i t' s take n a yea r bec ause I don't recall it but especially thes e ma t t e r s t h at ar e n o t ( p l a n n ing ) ap plica tions as su c h a r e not c ons id ered a t op pr ior it y T he p res sur e to deal w ith de velopmen t pla ns take s prio r i t y i n t h e De p a r t me n t o f Physic al Planning M r Major sa id as mu lt i -m il li on do ll ar pr oj ec t s i nv ol vin g la ndo w ne rs, b ank s, con tr a ctors, a rc h itects a nd deve l op er s take up staff t ime A nd it i s p re ci se l y t hi s pr e ssu re which AF FG A f ea rs wil l le ad to encr oachment on t he va l u a b l e w e t l a n d s t h ey a r e seeking t o protect "We hope the gov er nm ent will a gr e e this prist ine area is far t oo important to the people o f Ab ac o t o s ac ri fi c e to future local or for e ign dev elo pe rs as it is p rese ntly o f e c o n o m i c v a l u e w i t h o u t b e i n g de veloped," M r Pinder s aid. S tu di es o f t he ar ea f ac i l it a t e d b y l o c a l n o n p r o f i t or ga ni s a t i o n F r i e nd s o f t h e E n v i r o n m e n t h a v e d o c u m ented more t ha n 50 s pecies o f f i s h i n t h e c r e e k a n d p r ov e n t h e l i nk be t we e n m a n g r ove and oc e anic ha bit a t s. D r C r a i g L a y m a n w h o sp ea rhe ade d the F r i en ds p roj ect sa id: It is one of th e first s tu di e s a n y wh er e i n th e wo rl d t h a t h a v e d i r e c t l y d e m o n s t r a t e d t h e c o n n e c t i o n b e t w e e n m a n g r o v e a n d oceanic habitats t h r ough t he m oveme nt s of f ishes. A d d i t i o n a l l y i t d i r e c t l y dem on s tr a te s t h e r ap id and c o n c r e t e i m p a c t s t h e c r e ek restor ation project s can have on mari ne f isheries. A s s u c h i t i s e s p e c i a l l y cr iti ca l to p rot e ct t hi s w et la n d a r ea a s it may be a p rimar y nu r ser y ar e a f or all of southe r n Aba c o." Fri e nds unde r took a major cre ek restora tion pro gram me in Cr os s Har bour f ive ye ar s a go w ith t he he l p of around 300 local people a nd s choolc h i l d r e n T h e o r g a n i s a t i o n t he n in it iat ed a f i sh tag gin g pro g ra mm e wit h lo ca l scho o ls w hi c h d oc u me nt ed t w ic e as many s pe c ies upstr e am t ha n b e f o r e t he y h a d c o m p l et ed t he w ork. N o w F l o r i d a b a s e d n o n p r of i t t h e B o ne f i s h T a r p on T rus t is undertaking a bonef i s h i n g t a g g i n g p r o g r a m m e a n d i s e x p e c t e d t o c e m e n t i mpo rt ant dat a abou t bo nef ish a nd the wider ecology of t h e a r e a i n t h e c o m i n g m o n t h s A F F G A w a n t s t o en s u r e t he ric h biodive r sity supporti ng suc h s cientif ic studies as wel l a s t he fly fis hi ng in du stry a nd lo c a l fi s he r i e s i s p ro t e ct e d as members fear developer s of re sorts a nd ma rina s will be a t t r a c t e d t o t h e ar e a b y i t s ac ces s to deep water. Mr Pi nder 's wi fe, f ly-f is hi ng guide C indy Pinder, said: "W e are just tr ying to do this t o p ro te c t a ver y go od a rea f or the fis heries, and for t h e people of Abac o ." W e d o n t n e e d a n o t h e r u n d e r u t i l i s e d m a r i n a i n A b a c o W e n e ed t o p r o t e c t t h i s la n d fo r t he f ut u re o f Ba h a m i ans I t doesn't need to be in the ha nds of fo reig n dev elo pe r s Ab ac o' s fl yfi s hi ng i nd us t ry dr aws an e s timated annual inc om e of around $4 mill i on an d c on tr i bu t es t o t he $140 mill ion as soc iated w ith c a t c h a n d r e l e a s e f i s h i n g t ouris m ac ross the count ry. LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDA Y MARCH 1 1, 201 1, P AGE 7 A F FG A cal ls on g ovt to decl are n o-bui l d z one' i n S A baco NICE CATCH: AFFGA president and fly-fishing guide Paul Pinder holds a bonefish he caught in Cross Harbour. G r o u p w a n t s 1 8 0 0 a c r e s o f Cr o w n L a n d t o b e o f f l i mi t s t o d ev e l o p e r s


L OCAL NEWS P AGE 8, FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011 THE TRIBUNE THE BAHAMAS will receive more than $5 million in US assistance over the next five years to support the countrys fight a gainst HIV and AIDS. The financial assistance is part of US President Barack Obamas Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR ment. US Ambassador to the Bahamas Nicole Avant will d iscuss the PEPFAR agreement when she opens the US Caribbean Regional HIV/AIDS Partnership Framework (PEPFAR Summit this coming Tuesday at the Sheraton Nassau Beach Hotel. Minister of Health Dr H ubert Minnis will also provide opening remarks. The three-day summit is expected to attract 80 participants from throughout the region to discuss and share strategies on HIV/AIDS awareness andp revention. This year alone, through PEPFAR, the US government has committed more than $1.6 million in assistance to the Bahamas in the areas of prevention, strategic information, laboratory strengthening, and h uman capacity development. The Ambassador will also announce a call for small grants proposals for the 2011 Ambassador Fund for Prevention. Community based organisations, non-government organisations, faithbased organisations, government ministries, businesses, clubs, schools, and individuals will be invited to submit proposals for one-time grant up to $10,000 for projects that promote HIV/AIDS awareness. The deadline is April 29, 2011. BAHAMAS TO GET $5M FROM US FOR HIV/AIDSFIGHT b ut were there advancing political g roups. We saw so many things that were going on. I, for one, wondered if wew ere dealing with a BTC situation or if we were dealing with a political situation. For the life of me I could not understand what was going on. I saw, along with other executive members, as we gone through the downtown area, persons walking a round with political photos of indiv iduals. T he demonstration was said to have been organised by the Committee to Save BTC, but Progressive Liberal Party (PLP made a strong appearance. Many of t heir members were dressed in yell ow political garb. A group of Brave D avis supporters also carried lifes ized Be Brave posters. They were d ressed in custom-made designer unity shirts. Mr Smith said downtown merchants called left, right and cen-t re to complain about a group of young protesters who were dropped off in the George Street area. As they walked to the protest, merc hants claimed they stopped in store after store causing a disturbance. I walked there personally and saw them. I knew some of them and talked to them. I heard them say, if they did not get paid there is going to be problems. I had to encourage some of them to come out of the s tores. They had no reason to go in t he stores. They were just being disruptive, said Mr Smith. My view is there were only a handful of persons there who were really dealing with BTC. If you were t o speak to some of those persons, t hey did not know why they were out there. They did not know what they were out there for. If we weret o really do the due diligence, we'll find a lot of them did not understand what was going on, he said. When the morale, welfare and i ntegrity of the force is under threat, Mr Smith said, the association has a responsibility to intervene. Such is t he case with debate around the B TC protest, he said, where comm ents being made in the public are concerning. Mr Smith said he wass trictly speaking from the perspective of the PSA. He said the police force stands for its integrity, and we would wish nobody to interfere with that. If we see the type and caliber of p ersons coming out there. We know t hem. We have nothing to hide on that. We are the police. We know of those persons. Not saying that they are going to come out there and do something, but we have to make s ure officers are there in case, and to a ctually deal with the issues, said Mr Smith. It was strange the type persons I s aw. Certainly being a police officer for over 21 years, we know our caliber of persons that were moving up and down. They had nothing t o do with BTC, but they were advancing these political groups. The police had a difficulty with t hat, he said. W hen pressed to explain what he m eant by criminally-minded persons, Mr Smith said: From the per-s pective of the association, we know that these are persons who are known to the police. These are persons who are unsavoury characters and they would have been before t he police on numerous occasions. H e said the PSA supports the p ublic in their right to protest; however, they feel groups must not let persons whose view is to cause a disruption interrupt what actually should be happening. The police are there for safety a nd to ensure control. (A demonstration of that nature) is a perfect opportunity for any crime toe xplode, said Mr Smith. We live in a real world; there are persons who don't like this person; those who might have criminal m otives; that is the best time for that kind of activity. So the police would have made s ure all of its units were there to l ook out for those persons, who may h ave been of a criminal nature to make sure, because that was ana mple time. have petitioned the hospital for the medical history of their infant Yannis since his d eath in January, 2010 but h ave only been able to secure a portion of the records which d etail his last stay in hospital, they claim. T hey said PMH has not released documents detailing the period from the baby's birth in August 2009 until hisr elease from hospital in October 2009. The couple fear the records may have been lost. "We're not accusing any b ody of anything, we just want closure," said Mr Tsakkos, 39. "We just want a second opinion of what happened. We requested the rest of the records, our lawyer hadm ade at least two official requests, we believe we are entitled to a second opinion. The response has been 'We're looking for them' and according to them they are s till looking. I wouldn't think i t would take so long," he said. A year on from the tragic d eath of their son, the pair still have not had closure because of the delay, they told The Tribune I don't wish this on any body, it's not a pleasant experience," said Mr Tsakkos, while his wife, 28, wiped tears from her eyes. Yannis, born prematurely i n PMH on August 12, 2009, was the Greek-Orthodox cou ple's only child. F rom his birth, the infant was besieged with health problems and spent the first f ew months of his life in the n eo-natal intensive care unit of PMH away from his par ents. H e was diagnosed with a number of illnesses, including meningitis, or inflammation of the membranes that cover t he brain and spinal cord, and hydrocephalus, a condition in which excess fluid accumulates in the brain. Doctors also said Yannis had congenital heart diseasea nd a hole in his heart. The hospital discharged Yannis in early October 2009,b ut he was readmitted to hospital in late December 2009 after his parents noticed a f ever, increased vomiting and t hat he was passing blood in his urine. This time he was admitted i nto the Children's Ward, his family said, and three days later he developed pneumonia. H e soon went into cardiac arrest and fell into a coma before his death on January 29. Thelma Rolle, PMH public relations officer, told The T ribune t he hospital would look into the report and con tact the parents in the hope o f straightening out the situation. "I have forwarded it to our C lient Feedback Unit which is g oing to catch up with the parents to see what's going on," said Ms Rolle. We will be in contact with them within the next few days and determine what went wrong, to investigate, and say w hy there was a breakdown." FROM page one P ARENTS OF BABY WHO DIED IN PMH UNABLE TO GET COMPLETE MEDICAL RECORDS Criminally-minded paid in BTC protest F ROM page one


LOCAL NEWS T HE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011, PAGE 9 f ully and no arrests were made. S till, workers told T he Tribune t hey are normally paid on Thursdays and claimed the construction company had not informed them of any changes in salary disbursements. "Every second Thursday we get paid, for over a year now I been getting paid on Thursday," said a worker who declined to give his name. "I had to go pay all kind of bills today. This crush my spirit.A nother worker claimed: "You can't tell the rent man they ain't pay u s today when they know you working. This causes problems in the household, they think you lying." Hever Cordova, company administrative manager, said it is company policy to pay workers on Friday but explained that sometimes the bank makes the money available earlier causing a "misunderstanding" between employees and the company. I think there was a misunderstanding from our workers. We have a greed from the beginning to pay them on Friday, so we were surprised they were expecting pay today (Thursday "We understand the employees need their money but the bank has a system they have to complete. Our instructions were given to them from Wednesday but the bank has 48 hours, the bank takes time to process payroll. "Once it is released some people take advantage and go before the specified time but it's not like the company doesn't want or can't pay salaries." Mr Cordova added that the company has shown police copies of internal memos which he said were circulated to workers about payd ay. relieve traffic congestion, but also to facilitate large infrastructure works which are being carried out underground. These, he said, are vital to improving the system of providing potable water and to allow for future expansion of other utility systems such as cable, electricity and telephone lines. Mr Higgs said contractors are trying to inconvenience businesses and residents as little as possible. Charlene Collie, project engineer with the Ministry of Works, said that in an effort to inform the public of the phases in which the works were to be carried out in the eastern corridor, flyers were distributed and a walkabout was con ducted. They also put up signs explaining this schedule, she said. Following Tuesdays row, ministry officials met with business owners. While fully acknowledging all their concerns, they sought to make it clear that some road clo sures and diversions will be unavoidable. Ms Collie said the ministrys traffic management committee is focused on the long-term benefits of the project, not the short-term liabilities. Since meeting with the business owners, the ministry has decided to re-examine the possibility of closing only one lane at a time in the Prince Charles area during business hours. However, Ms Collie warned this would extend the time the works will take and affect the cost of the project. She assured the public that both lanes are only closed "when absolutely necessary or for safety reasons, and always for the absolute minimum amount of time possible. She said once the work is done, drivers will have a wider Prince Charles Drive with new drains, improved lighting, sidewalks, better signs and ultimately, less traffic. LABOUR Minister Dion Foulkes has criticised PLP Deputy Leader Philip Brave Davis for seeking to politicise the tragedy of suicide and mental health issues. Minister Foulkes responded in a press statement yesterday to remarks made by Mr Davis at a P rogressive Liberal Party rally in Golden Gates Tuesday night. Mr Davis at that time suggested that t he Free National Movement a dministrations failure to create sufficient jobs to deal with the c ountrys unemployment probl em led to the untimely deaths of B ahamians. Suicide, said Mr Foulkes, is a complex matter which shouldb e discussed and responded to with great care and sensitivity, as well as compassion and proactive responses by various institutions and individuals, including those in public office. I therefore found it disturbing a nd a lack of compassion and s ensitivity that Mr Philip Brave D avis, the Deputy Leader of the P rogressive Liberal Party would s eek to politicise the tragedy of s uicide and related issues of mental health and depression. He noted that suicides in The Bahamas are down by 33 per cent from 2009 to 2010, from twelve to eight respectively. Still, every suicide is a tragedy for the indiv iduals and families involved as well as the wider community. According to Mr Foulkes prio r to the Christmas holidays, the D epartment of Social Services e ntered into a partnership with accounting firm Grant Thornton to increase the number of coun-s ellors available to the national suicide hotline. He noted that because of the confidentiality of the hotline, a number of persons have been helped over the past several months. I encourage those who are in n eed of assistance or who have a f amily or church member or friend or work colleague in needo f assistance, to call the confid ential National Suicide Hotline at 322-2763. Bahamians should work in a nonpartisan manner to preventa s many suicides as possible as well as to respond to such a tragedy when it occurs, he said. The reasons for suicide are varied and often complex. Difficult economic times may help to lead to an increase in suicides as has been seen in various countries around the world during what have been some of the toughest economic times in generations. He said that at home, the Government responded with a comprehensive and intensive a rray of measures to respond to the global financial crisis and its impact on individuals, families a nd communities. These included a dramatic increase in social assistance, the National Retraini ng Programme, and the landm ark Unemployment Benefit P rogramme as well as through other measures to stimulate the economy and jobs. According to the World Health Organization, The Bahamas has one of the lowest suicide rates in the world. This may be due in part to our strong sense of community and religious faith, both of which we should c ontinue to rely on in good and d ifficult times. M r Foulkes invited the Oppos ition as well as all others to o ffer ideas, support and prayers i n helping those in our homes and communities who may be tempted to commit suicide. Moreover, we should support those families who have suffered the loss of a loved one through such a tragedy. What is needed in such trying t imes is love and compassion, not insensitivity or making judgments. M r Foulkes invited those who w ish to be trained as volunteers f or the Hotline to call 322-3035. I also wish to restate that the National Suicide Hotline numberi s 322-2763, he said. SEEPAGETWO P OLICE CALLED AFTER ROAD WORKERS TOLD PAY NOT IN THEIR BANK ACCOUNTS FROM page one FROM page one ROAD CLOSURES Minister criticises PLP Deputy for seeking to politicise suicide PHILIP BRAVE DAVIS had suggested that the Free National Movement administrations failure to create sufficient jobs to deal with the countrys unemployment problem led to the u ntimely deaths of Bahamians.


By NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPAl icencees have applied to the Supreme Court for permis sion to intervene in Cable Bahamas two-year battlew ith the Utilities Regulation & Competition Authority (URCA legal issues potentially abrogate or amend the Hawksbill Creek Agree ment. A ttorney Rawle Maynard a nd businessman Chris L owe, in an affidavit sworn in support of the Freeport Licensees and Property Owners Associations appli cation to become an intervening party, said Cable Bahamas Judicial Review action had raised three pivotal issues crucial to interpreting key Hawksbill Creek Agreement provisions, and it was critical to safeguard GBPA licensee rights. The affidavit, filed with the Supreme Court on February 11, 2011, said the first provision related to the fact that the Hawksbill Creek Agreement stipulated that any amendment to it required the approval of at least 80 per cent of GBPA licencees. This, Messrs Maynard and Lowe alleged, vest in each licencee the right to be consulted, and a right to be heard and be counted in connection with all such amendments. And they claimed that the same Agreement also pro hibited the GBPA from assigning its rights, and restricted whilst providing for a transfer by the Port Authority as respect its said quasi-governmental powers and its specified rights, powers and obligations for the proper administration and development of the Port Area other than to a Local Authority. The last two Hawksbill Creek Agreement provi sions come into play because Cable Bahamas Judicial Review, over the seemingly innocuous question of whether its Freeport busi ness should pay $78,747 worth of licensing fees, has highlighted how the agree ment that underpins Freeports very existencea nd development could be breached by the national communications supervisoryr egime. GBPA officials have been concerned since 1999 that attempts to create aB ahamas-wide t elecoms/communications regulatory regime, via the Telecommunications Act of SECTIONB FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011 THETRIBUNE $4. 68 $4. 51 $4. 69The information contained is from a third party and The Tribune can not be held responsible for errors and/or omission from the daily report.$ $4.72 $5.12 $4.72 get sound investment advice benet from multiple fund options earn potentially higher returnsall of the aboveinvestmentsplan your strategy call us today at (242396-4076 A SUBSIDIARY OFCORPORATE CENTRE: EAST BAY & SHIRLEY STREET & EAST BAY STREET I By NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC a 51 per cent stake in the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC ulator on the grounds it would not lessen competition in any o f the services the state-owned incumbent currently offers, as it rejected concerns that CWC would use the extended three-year cellular monopoly to impede the growth of c ompetition in other markets. I n a decision that will come as no surprise to informed o bservers, the Utilities Regulation & Competition Authority (URCA there is no evidence to support a finding of a substantial No evidence BTC deal anticompetitive URCA approves CWC privatisation, rejecting claims cellular monopoly extension will impede the growth of competition* Fears three-year monopoly will enable BTC/CWC to use cellular profits to cross-subsidise rival business lines* Other concerns involve CWC using Caribbean affiliates to give BTC more favourable terms, and help it cost shift BTC international services market share 5-25% SEE page 5B POR T LICENCEES MOVE T O INTER VENE ON UR C A SEE page 5B By NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor and ALISON LOWE Business Reporter Robin Hoods president last said the company was under attack from a host of unnamed sources who wanted to force it from the Bahamian retail market, but warned: I have no intention of disappearing gracefully and going into the night. Sandy Schaefer spoke to Tri bune Business after dismissing R OBIN HOOD C OMESUNDER ATTACK But retailers chief warns: I have no intention of disappearing gracefully and going into the night Claims Robin Hood has changed the face of Bahamian retail by forcing rivals to lower prices Dismisses claims of lay-offs, and payroll and supplier payment issues, as patently untrue SEE page 4B By NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor More than 50 permanent, d esperately needed jobs will b e created if a renewable e nergy supplier obtains an agreement to supply Grand Bahama Power Companyw ith energy from Refuse Derived Fuel (RDFB usiness was told yesterday, w ith the proposed plant able t o supply between 15-30 Mega Watts (MW months of starting operations. T he business plan for EFuels Bahamas, a copy of which has been seen by thisn ewspaper, said the energy s upplier had obtained $100 million in financing from the US Export-Import Bank, and if its project was approved c ould sell the power it produced to either the Bahamas E lectricity Corporation (BEC Power at $0.13 per kilowatt hour. This, the plan said, would p ass substantial savings on t o Bahamian residential and commercial electricity users, w ith fuel surcharges reduced and the Bahamas driven a s tep further down the road to e nvironmentally-friendly, sust ainable energy that could stab ilise power prices. With respect to employment, the local economy is expected to realise the full benefit from the job and pay r oll estimate, E Fuels Bahamas project overview s aid. The green power plant j obs and the construction activity for both phases will a lso create a number of jobs indirectly from the projectrelated spending, and the spending decisions of plant, trucking and construction w orkers. The number of indirect or induced jobs created in the G rand Bahama economy is estimated at 450 jobs over the t wo project phases. From a s hort-term socioeconomic p oint of view, the plant itself a nd the related construction activity will immediately provide as many as 348 much needed jobs for Grand $100m renewable plants jobs boost n Waste-to-energy proposal for Grand Bahama promises more t han 50 permanent posts, with total impact creating 450 jobs n Construction phase could generate 348 jobs, with plant aiming to generate between 15-30MW within 10 months of start SEE page 4B FOODFORTHOUGHT: The Robin Hood store in Prince Charles Drive. B y ALISON LOWE Business Reporter The Department of Physical Planning has asked the A ttorney Generals Office to prosecute businesses w ho have refused to take d own digital billboards around New Providence, its director said yesterday. W ith over a month having p assed since the Ministry of the Environment issued a d emand for the billboards to b e switched off or removed, given that they are considered illegal by the Department under a 1964 law regul ating advertising, Michael M ajor said the matter is now out of his hands. Nothing concrete came of it. The matter is at the A ttorney Generals Office f or further action. If we give n otice saying the signs s hould be removed and they are not in the time specified, then it is sent to the AGs office for prosecution, said Mr Major. Planning moves on prosecution of sign owners S EE page 6B B y NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor The Bahamian Contractors Associations (BCA president yesterday said an Inter American Develop ment Bank (IDB project to modernise the Governments procurement system was critical to maximising Bahamian involvement in public sector infrastructure projects. Stating that it was necessary to regularise the Governments tender processes and protocols, Stephen Wrinkle said of the $331,396 project, which will be financed with an $239,196 grant: They cer tainly need that revision. We hope that it proceeds on course. Thats part of the World Trade Organisation (WTO one of the main require ments moving forward to join the WTO is improving Gov t tendering r eform critical SEE page 6B STEPHEN WRINKLE



BUSINESS T HE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011, PAGE 3B By ALISON LOWE Business Reporter a A trade symposium is being planned to bring Bahamian straw vendors and a multitude of straw/handicraft manufacturers together to ensure the viability of authentically Bahamian craftwork as a trade, ahead of the launch of the new Nassau Straw Market as a p latform for locally-made souvenirs. The Ministry of Works is leading efforts to enhance linkages between the straw work manufacturers, who are located throughout the Bahamas, and vendors who will be setting up stalls inside the new Straw Market in a bid to increase the opportunity for each set of stakeholders, and the B ahamian tourism product, to benefit. The reality is that while wholesalers of foreign souvenirs from Taiwan and Japan have got ready access to vendors in the current tented Straw Market from bases in Nassau, and can offert hem an ample supply and variety of products to retail at their stalls at a lower price, enabling greater profit margins, Bahamian handicraft manufacturers are located throughout the Family Islands and have faced difficulties in pricing and distributing their goods competitively, according to Downtown Nassau Partnership mana ging director, Vaughn Roberts. Elizabeth Keju, undersecretary in the Ministry of Public Works, said the Government, through the Ministries of Works and Tourism, and entities such as the Downtown Nassau Partnership, are attempting to minimising issues that have limited the penetration of Bahamian handicrafts in the souv enir market. She said that based on her interractions with straw vendors, the opportunity to maximise the sale of authentic Bahamian handicrafts to tourists is a sleeping giant that could provideh uge financial and social benefits. Vendors, she said, have described sending children to law school, medical school and engineering school using money they have earned in the past from the sale of straw work to tourists. Revive The government hopes it can revive a nd restore the industry in this regard. We're hoping that we can as much as possible have a market that sells authentic Bahamian crafts. There's some challenges in that area in terms of availability and cost, but we're working with vendors and the manufacturers, said Ms Keju. A meeting was held two weeks ago i n which vendors were brought together with manufacturers of handicrafts to begin to talk about what could be done to help them sell more Bahamianmade items. W hile many of the vendors are themselves skilled craftspeople, said Ms Keju, they often turn to selling cheaper imported souvenirs, as they find them easier to sell to tourists who are often looking for a low cost trinket or bag. The ability to get a ready supply of reasonably priced Bahamian handic rafts may be key to increasing their sale, suggested both Mr Roberts and Ms Keju yesterday. A vendor may not be able to sell a $100 straw bag every day, said Mr Roberts, but you may be able to sell quite a few $5 wallets or something like that. A trade symposium where vendors c an peruse the range of items that straw/handicraft manufacturers can produce, and in which discussions can be held between both sides towards coming to a consensus on addressing some of the barriers that have tradi-t ionally limited the extent to which they have been able to work together, is planned for summer 2011. Were hoping we can have a trade symposium between the manufacturers and the operators, where they can sit together, look at what's available, talk about pricing issues, marketing issues and begin this serious process of netw orking and negotiating to ensure the viability of this trade for all concerned, because if one fails all fail. We want them to sit down and work things out, said Ms Keju. According to the Works official, the Straw Market is on target both in financial terms and construction schedule, and remains set for a late summ er, end of year 2010 opening. Interior work, including the installation of counters for vendors and utilities is currently underway. Trade meeting to ensure viability of handicrafts By ALISON LOWE Business Reporter A PLP MP again questioned the credibility of the Utilities Regulation and Competition Authority (URCA communications sector regulator announced it has given formal approval to the sale of 51 per cent of the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC tions (CWC URCA yesterday issued its adjudication on the change in control of BTC, saying it approved the transaction because it did not find evidence that by allowing CWC to take a 51 per cent interest in BTC there would be a substantial lessening of competition in the telecommunications sector in the Bahamas. Noting that the regulatory authority has been aware of and had due regard to public sentiment regarding the change in control, and has noted the significant public interest in various aspects of the transaction, URCA said it reviewed sever al issues which are not relevant to the matters which URCA is empowered by the Communications Act to consider in relation to its approval or rejection of the change in control. Fred Mitchell, MP for Fox Hill, had called on URCA not to approve the change in control of BTC on the basis of several considerations among them, that he believed the exclusivity period granted to CWC over the cellular market was unconstitutional, and the fact that URCAs CEO and a consultant to the entity have had previous ties to CWC. He also contended in a February letter to URCA, declaring his opposition to the BTC control transfer, that he did not think selling control of BTC to CWC would result in any benefit to consumers, as the Government has contended. Integrity URCAs chairman, Wayne Aranha, since issued a statement in defense the integrity of the regu lator and its chief executive, Usman Sadaat. It called for well meaning members of the public to desist from unproductive and damaging behaviour or unsubstantiated public comments, and instead concentrate objectively on the core issues. Yesterday, URCA went further on the issue of the alleged conflict of interest, stating that it was satisfied that no conflict of interest arises in respect of any person who has been in any way involved in URCAs consideration of the parties request for approval of the change in control of BTC. On the question of lack of potential efficiencies and consumer benefits raised by opponents of the change in control, such as Mr Mitchell, URCA said that it would consider the efficiencies and benefits claimed by the merging parties (BTC and CWC hood of a substantial lessening of competition ina market. Given that it does not see the acquisition of BTC by CWC as likely to lessen competition in the Bahamas telecoms industry, URCA suggested such claims regarding efficiencies and bene fits do not come into play. Mr Mitchell reiterated his belief that URCA has a credibility problem, telling Tribune Business the bodys decisions are really not worth the paper their written on. It is very interesting that the Prime Minister was able to say that URCA breached the rules in connection with the hiring of foreign personnel, and that his government was going to write thema letter asking them to act according to government policy. The first question in my mind is: What else can (the government on? he added. Mr Mitchell said that as an interested individual he will review the reasons given by URCA for approving the change in control of BTC, and if necessary take the necessary court action. MP blasts URCA on credibility problem HITTINGOUT: Fred Mitchell, MP for Fox Hill


Bahama residents. A more long-term economic benefit of a reliable and sustainable green power source will be the attracting o f other businesses to F reeport, Grand Bahama, and the expansion of existing businesses. The plant will operate as a green power gasifier, turningR efuse Derived Fuel (RDF into gas to generate energy.T he gas will be taken to a Heat Recovery System Generator (HRSG verts it into steam to power a turbine. The turbine will generate electricity that will be sent tot he grid for power use. The project is proposed in two phases, each phase having the capability to produce up to 35MW (gross or 30 MW (net in two phases of renewable ( green) power, E Fuels Bahamas said. That power volume is significant, given that Grand Bahamas maximum electricity demand in2 009 was 73 MW. RDF is generated from m unicipal solid waste, and is a blend of paper and plastic, w ith chipped tyres added in to generate extra heat. It is derived, E Fuels Bahamas said, from residential waste, n ot industrial waste, with glass and metals removed. The initial feedstock for the green power plant will be prepared RDF shipped fromW est Palm Beach at a blend of 70% RDF and 30% tires ( blended onsite), the company added. The prepared R DF is baled, plastic wrapped and put into standard seagoing containers for shipment to West Palm Beach, Florida b y rail and ultimately Freeport, Grand Bahama. I mplementing waste-toenergy and other renewable e nergy projects in the Bahamas, E Fuels Bahamas said, would reduce this nations greenhouse gas emissions, as well as fossil fuel imports, and boost energy security. Important The [former] is especially important given that the annual average emission of 6 .7 tons of CO2 per person m akes the Bahamas among t he highest per capita emitt ers of Greenhouse Gases ( GHGs) in the world, E F uels Bahamas said. This c ould generate an interesting potential to sell Carbon Emis sion Reductions (CERs through the Clean Development Mechanism (CDM developed under the Kyoto Protocol. The E-Fuels Project will reduce The Bahamas carbon footprint by producing green power. More importantly, the project is designed to encourage the local power company to provide a lower cost of power to residents, business and industry, while improving the reliability through diversified power-generating source and site. as patently untrue claims that Robin Hood was this week in the process of laying-off 25-30 staff with, as stated by Tribune Business sources close to the situation, some 15-18 persons let go from the two-store retailer on Wednesday. First contacted by Tribune Business on Wednesday, when he also branded reports of layoffs at the retailer, which has a 300-strong staff, as not at all true, Mr Schaefer said the last significant staff cut backs were those which took place in January. After that it has been the status quo, he added. In a weeks period do we let go three-four people? Yes. In a week, do we hire four-five people? Yes, absolutely. Mr Schaefer also dismissed claims, made by various retail and wholesale sources, that the pay cheques of some Robin Hood employees had bounced when they attempted to cash them, and that some of the retailers suppliers had been chasing it for due payment for several weeks. Thats just not the case, he said of both claims. I dont know where all of this is coming from. When it came to supplier payments, Mr Schaefer added: All of our local suppliers, with the exception of maybe two, we pay cash in advance, and weve done that since we opened the grocery store side so we can get better pricing. Dismissing the claims that Robin Hood had run into finan cial difficulties, having possibly expanded too far, too fast, as just sour grapes, Mr Schaefer added: Were paying all of our local suppliers, from Bahamas Food Services to Asa H Pritchard; for any one of the local vendors we are CBD cash by delivery. That buys us a few more points, so how can we be behind with payments? Show me an invoice, show me something we havent paid, and at the end of the day I will address it. The Robin Hood president then suggested to Tribune Business that forces in the Nassau business community and wider society were out to get him, and potentially force him out of business, having been upset at how his company had shaken up the Bahamian retail industry and forced rivals to lower their consumer prices. Telling this newspaper to connect all the dots, when it asked for the names of the forces ranged against him, and suggesting that recent articles written about Robin Hoods new Prince Charles Drive store may have sparked competitor jealousy, Mr Schaefer said this newspapers revelation that he was in exploratory merger/acquisition talks with City Markets principals may have prompted the rumours in a bid to reduce his companys value. Were under attack right now. Theres no question. There may be a lot of people who have something to gain by putting us in a weak position, he told Tribune Business. At the end of the day, business is tough for everybody. Do we need to make it even tougher? Mr Schaefer said opposition to Robin Hood had been around since the beginning of time. And he added: Theres one undeniable fact: Robin Hood has changed the face of retail on this island. We were the ones who said: The Emperors not wearing any clothes. We forced everyone to lower their prices. These people hope to gain a lot if we disappear from the market. Do I have any intention of disappearing? No. I have no intention of disap pearing gracefully and going into the night. Robin Hood is currently talki ng to City Markets principals and potential other interested parties, but Mr Schaefer vehe mently denied that these moves had been prompted by his busi ness running into financial difficulties. The late opening of Robin Hoods new Prince Charles Dri-v e store, which is now being further impacted by the closure of a portion of the road in front of it due to road works, was said to have cost the company millions of dollars in revenues over the Christmas 2010 period. The expansive retailer had hoped to open the new store int ime to catch the Christmas and New Year shopping season, a period that often accounts for up to 40-50 per cent of some stores' annual sales revenues, but Tribune Business sources suggested the opening was delayed by the need to comply with requirements stipulated by the Ministry of Works and other government agencies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f5DWLQJ IURP%HVWUHHFWLQJWKHFRPSDQ\QDQFLDOVWDELOLW\DQG VRXQGULVNPDQDJHPHQWSUDFWLFHV 3OHDVHDSSO\EHIRUHDUWK *U7UDLQLQJDQDJHU %DKDPDV)LUVW&RUSRUDWHHUYLFHV 3 1DVVDX%DKDPDV 2UHPDLOWR FDUHHUV#EDKDPDVUVWFRP Robin Hood under attack FROM page 1B $100m renewable plants jobs boost FROM page 1B


lessening of competition resulting from the $210 million acquisition by CWC. P ointing out that its powers under the Communications Act only allowed it to block industry mergers and acquisition on competition grounds, and when the purchase of media assets wasa gainst the public interest, the regulator concluded of the BTC privatisation: URCA finds that the change in con-t rol contemplated by the t ransaction would not have e ither of the adverse effects set out [in the Acts] section 72; substantially lesseningc ompetition, or for a change in control involving a media public interest, an effect con t rary to public interest. E ssentially, because CWC does not already have a presence in the Bahamian comm unications market, URCA found that its BTC acquisition taking over majorityc ontrol at an existing operator would have no impact on current competition levels. However, one respondent ( possibly Cable Bahamas) to URCAs consultation process on the BTC deal suggested t hat the privatisation by CWC would create a substantial lessening of competition in several markets, as it meant the companys Caribbean business, LIME, would not enter the Bahamas as a com p etitor to BTC. Noting BTCs dominant share of the fixed-landline and cellular markets, where a ccording to URCA the stateowned incumbent holds a 98 per cent and 100 per centm arket share, respectively, this respondent argued that the extension of BTCs post-p rivatisation cellular monopoly from two to three (likely four) years, had effectively extended the companys abil i ty to cross-subsidise its other businesses with profits from the cellular side. The transaction will cause a lessening of competition in the fixed markets, as it e xtends the licensees ability t o leverage its mobile monop oly to impede the growth of competition in the fixed voice, b roadband, domestic long distance and international long distance market, the respon-d ent said. The transaction will cause a lessening of competition in t he international services mar kets because [CWC] will have an incentive and the ability to favour [BTC] over other operators licensed to provide international services to customers in the Bahamas. This was because, the respondent argued, CWCs Caribbean affiliates held dominant positions in their home markets, and had the ability to offer call termination services to BTC on price terms and conditions which disc riminate against other intern ational services providers in t he Bahamas. And the same respondent also expressed concern that CWC, with its One Caribbean operating model, would be in a position to cross-subsidise BTC by providing operational, management and administrative services to it at lower prices, enabling the privatised entity to engage in anti-competitive cost shifting. These practices may not b e addressed by, or be detectable under, URCAs current cost accounting and a ccounting separation rules, t he respondent said. I n response, URCA said it was impossible for it to speculate on what would happen t hrough the extension of B TCs cellular monopoly from two to three years, as this was a matter that had yet to be debated and passed by P arliament. Monopoly T his, it added, was a matter for the Government and Parliament, not itself, although it noted that the cellular m onopoly was core to BTCs value and that a failure t o consummate the CWC deal might set back the introduction of competition in this market even further. When it came to interna tional services, both BTC and CWC estimated that the form ers market share was b etween 5 per cent and 25 per c ent of total revenues. While BTC owned and operated the Bahamas II fibre o ptic cable, which provided c onnectivity between Florida and New Providence/Grand Bahama; the cable system linking the other Bahamian i slands and Haiti; and the s atellite earth station at Solid e r Road for European connectivity, this was balanced by the competing infrastruct ure of Cable Bahamas and Columbus Communications. Another international connectivity provider, Global Nexus Communications, had b een licensed to provide connectivity to Freeport, and while CWC had cables that terminated in Florida they were not substitutes for B TCs, as they did not link the Bahamas. When it came to concerns a bout CWC providing preferential call rates for BTC,a nd leveraging its mobile monopoly to ensure that calls by BTC customers were routed along CWCs networks, URCA said its regulatory powers enabled it to deal with t hat. O n the fixed-voice side, U RCA said that while BTC w as estimated to have 98 per c ent market share, the r emaining 2 per cent belongi ng to Systems Resource Groups (SRG brand, this data did not i nclude Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP domestic and international calls made via calling card. T urning to the claim that t he BTC privatisation prevents CWC from entering the B ahamian market as a competitor to the state-owned incumbent, thus constraining its behaviour, URCA said the fixed line and data markets had been open to competitors since 2009, and CWC had made no move to obtain the n ecessary licences to do so. URCA believes that the high cost of entry and long time to roll-out in the fixed s ervices markets (particularly t hose in which [BTC] has sig nificant market power) sub stantially decrease the likelih ood of [CWC] entering the market, save by way of acquisition of existing licensed operators, the regulator said. And, on the data side, com petition would not be impacted because BTC has just a 30 per cent market share. BUSINESS T HE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011, PAGE 5B No evidence BTC deal anti-competitive FROM page 1B t hat same year, and now the Communications Act 2009, could erode both its rights to licence this industry in Freeport and "require us to breach the Hawksbill Creek Agreement". A draft February 14, 2001, letter from Sir Albert Miller to then-finance minister, Sir W illiam Allen, on this issue, warned: "The p roposed draft agreement first sent to us b y the Office of the Prime Minister places GBPA in a somewhat untenable position. "To agree to the assignment of our rights, as proposed therein, would require us to breach the Hawksbill Creek Agreement." In their affidavit, Messrs Lowe and Maynard said the question of whether the Comm unications Act applied to Freeport raises i ssues of law requiring an interpretation of provisions of the Agreement. Licensee members of the Association w ish to be heard in relation to that question, a s it concerns the meaning and legislative effect of the 1999 Act and its potential abrogation or amendment of the Agreement. As licensees, we stand to be affected by any abrogation or amendment of the Agreement, and we are compelled therefore to take appropriate steps when (and if s ary to safeguard the inviolability and integrity of the Agreement upon which the protection of our rights and interest d epend. A lleging that the Hawksbill Creek Agreem ent vested GBPA licencees with rights of a proprietary nature that are to be afforded c onstitutional protection, Messrs Maynard a nd Lowe alleged that all licencees derived their rights and status from it. They also had the right to be consulted and heard, and consent to any amendments to the Hawksbill Creek Agreement. The Government's current position is set out in two letters sent in late 2009 to theG BPA and its legal advisors by David Davis, p ermanent secretary in the Prime Minister's Office, in which he states: "The Gov ernment's position is that there should be a s ingle regulator for the electronic commun ications sector of the Bahamas." Adding that the Bahamas Telecommuni cations Company (BTC was expected to continue operating in F reeport under the current licensing regime, Mr Davis added: "Having regard for the provisions of the Hawksbill Creek Agreement, the Government is minded, using moral suasion, to seek the cooperation of your [Port Authority] Board in agreeing that the URCA regime might be extended to Freeport. In this regard, I herewith formally seek the concurrence of your Board." Various drafts have been kicked back and forth, the most recent, according to an August 31, 2009, legal opinion prepared by Graham, Thompson & Co's Robert Adamsf or GBPA president Ian Rolle, having been a draft Deed of Assignment sent on June 18, 2009, by T. B. Donaldson, chair of the Government-appointed privatisation committee. According to Mr Adams, this draft involved the GBPA assigning all its rights to licence and regulate the provision of electronic communications services within the P ort area to URCA for $1. "GBPA's rights under the existing business licences that have been issued to electronic communications services providers i n the Port area will be included in the a ssignment," Mr Adams wrote. For example, all of GBPA's rights, i ncluding the right to collect the licence fees, under its licence agreement with BTC and C able Bahamas will also be assigned to U RCA." Summing up the implications, Mr Adams w arned: "Although it is our view that the D eed does not purport to 'amend' the terms o f the Hawksbill Creek Agreement, it must be noted that an assignment of a part of GBPA's rights under the Hawksbill Creek Agreement to a third party would represent a very significant change to the regulatory landscape in the Port area. "Accordingly, if GBPA is prepared to give up its rights to regulate the electronic communications sector in the Port area and negotiate mutually acceptable commercialb enefits and terms for an assignment of such rights to URCA, it is our recommendation that GBPA engage in a well-planned, struc-t ured and transparent process of public consultation with its existing stakeholders and licencees prior to entering into such ana ssignment despite the fact that there is no strict legal obligation on GBPA to do so." Port licencees move to intervene on URCA FROM page 1B


DAVE CARPENTER, AP Business Writers JEANNINE AVERSA, A P Business Writers WASHINGTON Americans' wealth grew 3.8 percent in the final three months of 2010, boosted by gains in stock portfolios. Companies, meanwhile, added to their cash stockpiles, which r eached their highest point in more than a half-century. H ousehold net worth rose to $56.8 trillion in the OctoberDecember quarter, even though the value of real-estate holdings fell 1.6 percent, the Federal Reserve said Thursday. Last quarter's gain exceeded the 2.6 percent increase in net worth in the July-September p eriod. So far this year, stocks have risen more than 3 percent. Further gains in wealth could lead Americans especially higherincome consumers to spend more, strengthening the econ o my. Net worth is the value of a ssets such as homes, checking accounts and investments, minus debts like mortgages and credit cards. It's now risen for two straight quarters after shrinking last spring. Americans' net worth is well a bove the bottom hit during the recession: $49 trillion in the Janu ary-March quarter of 2009. Still, it would have to rise an additional 16 percent to reach i ts pre-recession peak of $66 trillion. Companies are still holding tight to their cash. Their cash piles grew to $1.89 trillion last quarter. That's the most on quarterly records dating to1 952. Economists predict that comp anies will use more of their cash this year to make capital investments and boost hiring. In the April-June quarter, net worth posted its first decline since 2009, when Europe's debt crisis bred turmoil on WallS treet. Since then, stock gains have continued to rebuild A mericans' wealth. B USINESS PAGE 6B, FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011 THE TRIBUNE 52wk-Hi52wk-LowSecurit y Previous CloseToday's CloseChangeDaily Vol.EPS $Div $P/EYield 1.130.95AML Foods Limited1. 10.639.05Bahamas Property Fund10.6310.630.000.0130.200817.71.88% 5.754.40Bank of Bahamas4.504.40-0.104,0000.1530.10028.82.27% 0.530.17Benchmark0.180.180.00-0.8770.000N/M0.00% 2.842.70Bahamas Waste2.702.700.000.1680.09016.13.33% 2.201.96Fidelity Bank1.961.960.000.0160.040122.52.04% 12.409.44Cable Bahamas10.2110.210.001.0500.3109.73.04% 2 .852.35Colina Holdings2.402.400.005000.7810.0403.11.67% 7.005.80Commonwealth Bank (S1)6.806.800.000.4880.26013.93.82% 2.861.90Consolidated Water BDRs2.162.07-0.090.1110.04518.62.17% 2.541.40Doctor's Hospital1.401.400.000.1070.11013.17.86% 6.505.25Famguard5. 9.275.88Finco5.885.880.000.6820.0008.60.00% 11.408.77FirstCaribbean Bank9.399.390.000.4940.35019.03.73% 6.004.57Focol (S)5.405.470.073,7000.4520.16012.12.93%1 .001.00Focol Class B Preference1. 5 .595.50ICD Utilities7.407.400.000.0120.240616.73.24% 10.509.80J. S. Johnson9.829.820.000.8590.64011.46.52% 10.0010.00Premier Real Estate10.0010.000.001.2070.2008.32.00% 52wk-Hi52wk-LowSecuritySymbolLast SaleChangeDaily Vol. 99.4699.46Bahamas Note 6.95 (2029BAH2999.460.00 1 00.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 17 (Series A) +FBB17100.000.00 100.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 22 (Series B) +FBB22100.000.00 100.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 13 (Series C) +FBB13100.000.00 100.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 15 (Series D) +FBB15100.000.00 52wk-Hi 52wk-Low Symbol Bid$ Ask$ LastPrice DailyVol EPS$ Div$ P/E Yield FINDEX: YEAR END 2008 -12.31%30 May 2013 20 November 2029THURSDAY, 10 MARCH 2011BISX ALL SHARE INDEX: CLOSE 1,456.81 | CHG 0.35 | %CHG 0.02 | YTD -42.70 | YTD % -2.85BISX LISTED DEBT SECURITIES (Bonds trade on a Percentage Pricing basis)Maturity 19 October 2017 7%RoyalFidelity Merchant Bank & Trust Ltd. (Over-The-Counter Securities)29 May 2015 W WW.BISXBAHAMAS.COM | TELEPHONE:242-323-2330 | FACSIMILE: 242-323-232019 October 2022 Prime + 1.75% Prime + 1.75% 6.95%B ISX LISTED & TRADED SECURITIES AS OF:7% Interest 52wk Hi 52wk Low Symbol Bid $ Ask $ Last Price Daily Vol EPS $ Div $ P/E Yield 10.065.01Bahamas SupermarketsN/AN/A14.00-2.9450.000N/M0.00% 0.550.40RND Holdings0.350.400.550.0010.000256.60.00% 41.0029.00ABDAB30.1331.5929.004.5400.0009.030.00% 0.550.40RND Holdings0.450.550.550.0020.000261.900.00% 52wk-Hi52wk-LowFund NameNAVYTD%Last 12 Months %NAV 3MTH 1.51221.4076CFAL Bond Fund1.51795.51%6.90%1.498004 2.95272.8300CFAL MSI Preferred Fund2.94860.04%1.45%2.918256 1.58371.5141CFAL Money Market Fund1.58370.61%4.59%1.564030 3.20252.8522Royal Fidelity Bahamas G & I Fund2.7049-0.56%-15.54% 13.638813.0484Royal Fidelity Prime Income Fund13.43920.61%-0.22% 114.3684101.6693CFAL Global Bond Fund114.36849.98%12.49%109.392860 106.552899.4177CFAL Global Equity Fund106.55284.75%7.18%100.779540 1.14651.0000FG Financial Preferred Income Fund1.14655.20%5.20% 1.11851.0000FG Financial Growth Fund1.11854.73%4.73% 1.14911.0000FG Financial Diversified Fund1.14915.35%5.35% 9.74859.1005Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 19.79504.85%5.45% 11.236110.0000Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 210.6417-1.20%0.50% 10.12669.1708Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 310.12661.27%1.27% 8.45104.8105Royal Fidelity Int'l Fund Equities Sub Fund8.45100.72%9.95% BISX ALL SHARE INDEX 19 Dec 02 = 1,000.00YIELD last 12 month dividends divided by closing price 52wk-Hi Highest closing price in last 52 weeksBid $ Buying price of Colina and Fidelity 52wk-Low Lowest closing price in last 52 weeksAsk $ Selling price of Colina and fidelity Previous Close Previous day's weighted price for daily volumeLast Price Last traded over-the-counter price Today's Close Current day's weighted price for daily volumeWeekly Vol. Trading volume of the prior week Change Change in closing price from day to dayEPS $ A company's reported earnings per share for the last 12 mths Daily Vol. Number of total shares traded todayNAV Net Asset Value DIV $ Dividends per share paid in the last 12 monthsN/MNot Meaningful P/E Closing price divided by the last 12 month earningsFINDEX The Fidelity Bahamas Stock Index. January 1, 1994 = 100 (S) 4-for-1 Stock Split Effective Date 8/8/2007 (S1) 3-for-1 Stock Split Effective Date 7/11/200730-Nov-10 31-Jan-11 107.570619 105.776543 30-Jun-10 31-Dec-10 NAV 6MTH 1.475244 2.910084 1.545071TO TRADE CALL: CFAL 242-502-7010 | ROYALFIDELITY 242-356-7764 | FG CAPITAL MARKETS 242-396-4000 | COLONIAL 242-502-752530-Nov-10 30-Sep-10 28-Feb-11 11-Feb-11 31-Jan-11MARKET TERMS31-Dec-10 31-Jan-11CFAL Securities Ltd. (Over-The-Counter Securities)31-Jan-11BISX Listed Mutual FundsNAV Date 30-Nov-10 31-Dec-10 9$&$1&< 3URSHUW\0DQDJHPHQW&RPSDQ\LV LPPHGLDWHO\VHHNLQJDQHQWU\OHYHO PDLQWHQDQFHZRUNHUIRULWVPXOWL IORRUFRPPHUFLDOEXLOGLQJ7KHLGHDO FDQGLGDWHZLOOEHUHTXLUHGWRSHUIRUP JHQHUDOEXLOGLQJPDLQWHQDQFHDQG UHSDLUZRUNLQYROYLQJSOXPELQJDQG HOHFWULFDOVNLOOVVRPHKHDY\OLIWLQJLV UHTXLUHG7KHFDQGLGDWHPXVWZRUN ZHOOLQGHSHQGHQWO\WDNHLQLWLDWLYHDQG EHDWHDPSOD\HU$WWUDFWLYHEHQHILWV5HSO\LQFRQILGHQFHWRYDFDQF\#JPDLOFRP RQO\VKRUWOLVWHGDSSOLFDQWVZLOOEHFRQWDFWHGf A look at economic developments and activity in major stock markets around the world Thursday: ___ LONDON Weaker-than-expected economic data from the U.S. and China and the battle for control of Libya weighed on European stock markets while a debt rating downgrade of Spain hit the euro a day ahead of a crucial meeting of European Union leaders. The FTSE 100 index of leading British shares closed down 1.6 percent, Germany's DAX fell 1 percent and the CAC-40 in Paris was 0.8 percent lower. ___ TOKYO Earlier in Asia, Japan's Nikkei 225 stock average ended 1.4 percent lower after the government said the economy shrank 1.3 percent in the fourth quarter. China's Shanghai Composite Index closed down 1.5 percent and Hong Kong's Hang Seng index retreated 0.8 percent. ___ BEIJING China reported an unexpected trade deficit in February as surging prices for oil and other commodities pushed up its import bill. February export growth plunged to 2.4 percent as businesses were idled for the weeklong Lunar New Year holiday while imports of higher-priced oil and other goods rose 19.4 percent for a deficit of $7.3 billion. ___ MADRID Moody's lowered Spain's credit rating, citing worries over the cost of the banking sector's restructuring, the government's ability to achieve its borrowing reduction targets and grim economic growth prospects. The agency reduced Spain's rating by one notch to Aa2 and warned that a further downgrade is possible if indications emerge that Spain's fiscal targets will be missed, and if the public debt ratio increases more rapidly than currently expected. ___ NEW YORK Oil prices tumbled as economists warned that the recent surge in fuel prices will eventually hurt the fragile economic recovery. ___ WASHINGTON A surge in oil prices and rising demand for foreign cars and machinery helped push imports up at the fastest pace in 18 years in January, giving the country the largest trade deficit in six months. The January deficit increased 15.1 percent to $46.3 billion, while exports rose 2.7 percent to an all-time high of $167.7 billion. But imports rose at nearly twice the pace of exports, to $214.1 billion. A big jump in demand for a variety of foreign goods from industrial machinery and telecommunications equipment to autos drove the increase. America's foreign oil bill rose 9.5 percent, underscoring concerns that higher oil prices could slow the economic growth. ___ ATHENS, Greece Greece's finance minister asked the EU to urgently reform the way ratings agencies are allowed to operate after what he called "unbalanced and unjustified" downgrades of Greece and other struggling European economies. George Papaconstantinou wrote in a letter that a ratings cut of Greek debt by Moody's this week risked creating damaging "self-fulfilling prophesies." ___ FRANKFURT Exports of trade powerhouse Germany slipped 1 percent in January from the previous month, but sales abroad were still higher than a year ago. Economists at UniCredit said China passed the United States as an export destination for Germany. ___ BERLIN German Chancellor Angela Merkel says her country will insist that any bailout funds for highly indebted eurozone countries will only be given out as a last resort and in return for strict austerity pro grams. ___ DUBLIN Ireland's newly elected prime minister, Enda Kenny, devoted his first full day on the job to lobbying European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso for a better bailout deal and cutting his Cabinet ministers' salaries. ___ LISBON Debt-stressed Portugal's embattled government came under further political pressure as Parliament debated a motion of no confidence brought by a fringe party. The largest opposition parties refused to support the motion, dooming it to failure, but the debate was an unwelcome ordeal for the minority government as it defends its economic record. Markets are heaping pressure on Portugal, one of Europe's fee blest economies, as investors demand steep returns for lending the country money amid fears it may not be able to pay it back. ___ CAIRO International ratings agency Standard & Poor's downgraded Libya's sovereign rating to junk status and suspended its rat ings for the country. ___ BERLIN Germany froze billions of euros in assets of the Libyan Central Bank and other state-run agencies, the latest move internationally to attempt to cut off funding to Moammar Gadhafi's embattled regime. The German asset freeze came into effect just as the European Union announced that it was extending its own financial sanctions. ___ CAIRO With Egypt's stock market closed for nearly five weeks, analysts and bankers are growing increasingly worried that the full effect of the protests that ousted Hosni Mubarak will be even larger than anticipated. For the past few weeks, Egyptian officials have looked to downplay the potential damage to the economy. They said growth for the cur rent fiscal year may take a hit, but the Arab world's most populous nation would ride through the unrest. That is now being called seriously into question. ___ TOKYO Japan's economy shrank more than initially thought in the fourth quarter. Real gross domestic product contracted at an annualized rate of 1.3 percent in the October-December period, worse than the negative 1.1 percent growth reported last month. ___ SEOUL, South Korea South Korea's central bank raised its key interest rate for the second time in three months as it steps up efforts to control inflation that has risen to its highest level in more than two years. ___ BERLIN German train drivers left thousands of commuters stranded across the country with a rush-hour strike aimed at pressuring the state-owned national railway and smaller, private operators for higher pay. ___ CAIRO An official says that the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council has pledged $20 billion in financial aid to Bahrain and Oman over a 10-year period as the two nations struggle with protests that have ravaged the Arab world. ___ MOSCOW U.S. Vice President Joe Biden said Thursday that Washington supports Russia's accession to the World Trade Organization because it will lead to greater trade between the two countries, what he called the "next frontier" of the relationship. G LOBALECONOMICNEWS/AP (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma STOCKRISING: In this Feb. 28, 2011 photo, a customer looks at two new 2011 Dodger Chargers at a dealership in Burlingame, Calif. Americans wealth grew 3.8 percent in the final three months of 2010, boosted by gains in stock portfolios. Companies, meanwhile, added to their cash stockpiles, which r eached their highest point in more than a half-century. Stocks lift household wealth while companies amass cash Archie Nairn, Permanent Secretary in the office of theA ttorney General, said that from its perspective,w hether prosecution of the businesses will occur is still to be determined. The matter is now under review. It hasnt yet beenc oncluded, but essentially physical planning wanted a l egal opinion (on how to proceed), said Mr Nairn. The most prominent digital billboards include Robin Hoods on Tonique Williams-Darling highway, and two bill boards whichh ave been erected on the corner of the Fox Hill/Prince Charles Drive junction and o n Shirley Street. Baha Mar o perates another digital billboard on Cable Beach, which its vice-president ofe xternal affairs, Robert Sands, says was erected with the permission of the Gove rnment. Sandy Schaefer, owner of Robin Hood, has previously stated that his company planned to fight the Hovernment order to take down the billboard, which providesa dvertising for Robin Hood and Marios Bowling, owned by his Tonique WilliamsDarling Highway store locations landlord, Leslie Miller. Planning moves on prosecution of sign owners FROM page 1B government procurement functions. Its an important g rant, and will go a long way to improving the internal tendering process for these works. It needs it. The project is designed to improve the Governments p rocurement system through the use of information and communications technology, creating a database of Bahamian companies who are eligible to participate in tendering processes, thus improving the access of small and medium-s ized enterprises to public sector contracts. The goal of this project is to contribute to the moderni sation of government procurement systems that will be more aligned to regional and international standards withn ew provisions for promoting the participation of medium and small and medium-sized enterprises, the IDB said. Government procurement is critical in developing/sustaining such businesses, and helping them to grow, and Mr Wrinkle said of the project: Its critical, particularly in light of the fact that these huge infrastructure projects are going to be awarded to international firms. It makes it more imperative that contracts can be awarded to Bahamian contractors, and that they are above board, transparent and involve the maximum number of parties. Adding that the Bahamas often seemed to live in crisis management, Mr Wrinkle said that some regularisation of the protocols and the form of tender process is necessary. The Government awards a lot of contracts during the course of a year, but more regularisation will help. The grant is very timely, and we will assist in any way possible. Govt tendering reform critical FROM page 1B


BUSINESS T HE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011, PAGE 7B 52%(57:$6+,1*721 :,//,$06RI3%R[*UHHQZRRG3DOP 6DQGLODQGV9LOODJH%DKDPDV /(*$/,&(3(36,&2/$%$+$0$6f %277/,1*&203$1

B USINESS PAGE 8B, FRIDAY, MARCH 11, 2011 THE TRIBUNE NEW YORK Grain prices fell Thursday after a government report eased concerns about shortages later this year. The U.S. Department of Agriculture predicted that corn and soybean reserves will be higher than initially estimated, forecasting there will be about 123.1 million metric tons of corn left over after this year's harvest. That's up from an estimated 122.5 metric tons in last month's report. There should be about 58.3 million metric tons of soybeans left over, compared with last month's estimate of 58.2 million. Corn for May delivery dropped 18.25 cents to $6.8275 a bushel. Wheat also fell 18.25 cents to $7.405 a bushel. Soybeans rose 6.5 cents to $13.555 a bushel. Lower reserves caused global grain prices to double this year. Corn was trading for just $3.50 a bushel as recently as this summer. But growing demand from ethanol producers and consumers in developing countries like China has stripped supplies. The government predicts corn reserves this year will be at their lowest level in 15 years. The longer-term trend for corn and soybeans will probably be higher, Sanow said, because global demand remains strong. But in the near-term, the recent run-up in prices is likely to ebb. The government estimates that food prices could rise more than 3 percent this year as processed food makers and grocery stores pass along higher costs for raw ingre dients. Still, crops like corn and soybeans account for just 10 percent of the raw ingredients used in processed foods. So it can take months for higher prices to reach consumers. Oil prices fell Thursday on weak economic news from the U.S. and China, but regained some of their losses on reports from Saudi Arabia that police had fired on demonstrators. Oil fell as low as $100.62 Thursday morning, the low est price in a week. The reaction to the Saudi development shows how sensitive the market is to news from the Middle East. Oil prices soared above $100 per barrel last week as an uprising in Libya essentially shut down the country's exports. Earlier in the day, economists were warning that the recent surge in fuel prices will eventually slow economic growth. The economic news helped cause the earlier oil selloff. China, which is expected to drive oil demand for years to come, reported overnight that surging oil and commodity prices produced a surprising trade deficit of $7.3 billion for February. FRANCESCA LEVY, AP Business Writers MATTHEW CRAFT, AP Business Writers NEW YORK Weak economic news from China, the U.S. and Spain combined with a slump in oil comp anies sent stocks sharply lower Thursday. Investors were jarred when China reported a surprise trade deficit in February. China's exports fell as businesses closed for the weeklong Lunar New Year holiday, but imports of higher-priced oil and other g oods jumped, widening the country's deficit to $7.3 billion. Meanwhile Moody's down graded Spain's debt, re-igniting fears about the European debt crisis. The downgrade also sent the dollar higher against the euro. News that forces loyal to L ibyan leader Moammar Gadhafi were poised to recapture the strategic oil port of Ras Lanouf from opposition forces sent oil down in the morning. But it jumped after Saudi Arabian police fired at protesters. In the late afternoon, crude oilw as trading below $103 a barrel, below the high of nearly $107 a barrel it reached on Monday. Stocks fell broadly, but energy companies were hit the hardest. Exxon Mobil Corp., the largest company in the world by market value, fell 3 percent. Chevron Corp. also fell 3 percent. Oil has been surging over the past few weeks because of the spreading protests in North Africa the Middle East. Libya produces less than 2 percent of the world's oil supply, investors have been worried that unrest will spread to major oil-prod ucing countries like Saudi Arabia and disrupt the flow of crude. The Dow Jones industrial average fell 204 points, or 1.7 percent, to 12,008. The Dow had been down as many as 224 points earlier, sending it brieflyb elow 12,000. Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and McDonald's Corp. were the only stocks in the Dow 30 that rose. McDonald's was up 1.6 percent after reporting that sales at restaurants open at least a year rose more than expected. The Standard & Poor's 500 index fell 21, or 1.6 percent, to 1,298. Energy companies fell 3 percent, the most of any industry tracked by S&P. The last time the index closed with a 20point drop was March 1, when Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke warned that a sustained increase in crude prices could pose a risk to the recovery. Only a handful of S&P 500 companies rose. Starbucks Corp. rose 10 percent after c ementing a deal with Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc. to sell drinks in machines made by Keurig. Netflix Inc. rose 4 percent. The Nasdaq composite fell 43, or 1.6 percent, to 2,708. Apart from several sharp swings in the last month, stocks have been rising nearly continuously since last August, when the Federal Reserve said it would take steps to stimulate the economy. Wednesday marked two years since stocks bottomed out at 12-year lows. Quincy Krosby, chief market strategist at Prudential, said the market was shaken by the combination of unexpectedly weak economic news from China, the downgrade of Spain's debt andc oncerns that protests planned for Friday in Saudi Arabia could bring instability to the world's largest exporter of oil. "The tone of the market has clearly changed," Krosby said. "The market trend had been to buy rather than sell and that bad news doesn't matter. The momentum is slowing." The government reported before the market opened that new applications for unemployment benefits rose more than expected last week and the trade deficit jumped in January. New unemployment claims rose by 26,000, far more than the 12,000 analyst had expected. Applications fell to nearly a three-year low the previous week. TAREK EL-TABLAWY, AP Business Writer CAIRO International ratings agency Standard & Poor's on Thursday downgraded Libya's sovereign rating to junk statusand suspended its ratings for the country. Also, the rebelled government in the nation's east said it would honor existing contracts with international oil companies. The twin developments spotlighted the challenges confronting an oil-rich nation that just weeks ago was well on the path to redemption after enduring years of sanctions as a pariah supporter of terrorism. S&P said it lowered its longand short-term sovereign credit ratings for Libya to BB/B from BBB+/A-2, and removed the ratings from CreditWatch negative. It also said it decided to suspend its ratings on Libya "due to the imposition of sanctions and because of a lack of reliable economic and political information." Stocks plunge on economic news and oil price swings (AP Photo/Seth Perlman, file FALLING PRICES: In this Sept. 11, 2010 file photo, central Illinois farmers har vest their corn crops near Monticello, Ill. U.S. reserves of corn have hit their lowest level in more than 15 years, reflecting tighter supplies that will lead to higher food prices in 2011. Increasing demand for corn from the ethanol industry is a major reason for the decline. (AP Photo/Richard Drew TOUGHTIME: Specialist Christopher Culhane works at his post on the f loor of the New York Stock Exchange Thursday, March 10, 2011. GRAIN PRICES F ALL ON FEWER SUPPLY WORRIES world BRIEFS S&P lowers and suspends Libya ratings CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER, AP Economics Writer WASHINGTON The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits rose last week. But the rise comes after applications hit their lowest level in nearly three years, and economists expect further declines as the economy improves. Applications increased by 26,000 to a seasonally adjusted 397,000 during the week ended March 5, the Labor Department said Thursday. The latest report covers the week after the Presidents' Day holiday (Feb. 21 government offices were closed. Applications usually rise in weeks following holiday-shortened weeks. The four-week average, a less volatile measure, rose to 392,250. The average fell to its lowest level since July 2008 two weeks ago. Applications below 425,000 signal modest job growth. But they need to fall consistentlyb elow 375,000 to signal a sustained decline in the unemp loyment rate. Unemployment benefit applications peaked during the recession at 651,000. Economists were encouraged that claims remained below 400,000 for the third straight week. "We still interpret thed ata as consistent with strengthening job creation," said John Ryding, an economist at RDQ Economics. A separate report Thursday showed that a sharp rise in oil prices helped push imports up at the fastest pace in 18 years in January. That caused the U.S.t rade deficit to widen to its largest level in six months. The January trade deficit increased 15.1 percent to $46.3 billion, the Commerce Depart ment said. Exports rose 2.7 per cent to an all-time high of $167.7 billion. But imports rosea faster 5.2 percent to $214.1 billion due to a big jump in America's foreign oil bill. That underscores concerns that surg ing oil prices could derail the economic recovery. Companies are hiring more, after months of sluggish job cre ation. Employers added 192,000 jobs last month, the most in nearly a year. The unemployment rate ticked down to 8.9 percent, the lowest level since April 2009. More jobs should boost incomes, which would fuel more consumer spending and in turn spur more econom ic growth and hiring. Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke referred to this cycle last week when he said there is "increased evidence that a selfsustaining recovery in consumer and business spending may be taking hold." At the same time, Bernanke said, "until we see a sustained period of stronger job creation, we cannot consider the recov ery to be truly established." Economists worry that several factors could slow or even reverse the recovery, including rising oil prices and state and local government cutbacks. Plenty of hiring is taking place. Kohl's Department Stores Inc. said Wednesday that it is opening nine stores in seven states, including Illinois, New York, Virginia and South Dakota. The move will create 1,200 jobs, the retailer said. Thursday's report also showed the number of people receiving unemployment benefits dropped by 20,000 to 3.77 million. That's the lowest level since mid-October 2008. And fewer people are receiving benefits under emergency unem ployment aid programs funded by the federal government. An additional 4.3 million unemployed workers received benefits under the extended programs during the week ending Feb. 19, a drop of about 200,000 from the previous week. US: MORE PEOPLE SOUGHT JOBLESS AID LAST WEEK TAREK EL-TABLAWY, AP Business Writer CAIRO Gulf Arab foreign ministers pledged $20 billion in financial aid Thursday to Bahrainand Oman, and warned against any foreign interfer ence as the oil-rich region struggles to rein in the unrest that has ravaged the Arab world and sent global oil prices spiking. The growing protests in Bahrain and Oman the poorer brothers in the oil-rich region have rattled the oth er members of the six-nation Gulf Cooperation Council, raising concerns that the unrest tearing through the Middle East will affect the key OPEC members. The GCC pledged $20 bil lion in aid over 10 years to be split between the two nations, said the United Arab Emi rates' foreign minister, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan. A committee repre senting the donor nations will meet in two weeks to discuss the program. Foreign ministers from the GCC announced the measures after a meeting in the Saudi capital, Riyadh. The bloc also issued a statement warning that it would not allow any foreign interfer-ence in their affairs. GCC pledges $20 billion in aid for Oman, Bahrain AMSTERDAM A Dutch court Thursday ordered LG Electronics to release 300,000 Sony PlaySta tion 3s seized on its behalf by Dutch customs officials earlier this month as part of a patent dispute case. The summary decision by the Hague District Court was a short-term win for Sony, as it can now regain possession of the consoles and resume distributing them. But LG's aggressive pursuit of its claim was a sign of the high stakes both sides have in their wider intellectual prop erty war. The court did not immediately publish a written version of its ruling, but details were reported by De Telegraaf, the Netherlands' largest newspaper, and several video game fansites who had reporters at the hearing. Sony wins the release of PlayStations seized by LG INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS

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