N N A A S S S S A A U U A A N N D D B B A A H H A A M M A A I I S S L L A A N N D D S S L L E E A A D D I I N N G G N N E E W W S S P P A A P P E E R R RBDF fears after poaching arrests C M Y K C M Y K Volume: 107 No.13MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 PRICE 75 (Abaco and Grand Bahama $1.25) WEATHER SUNNY AND BREEZY HIGH 75F LOW 59F I N S I G H T SEEPAGE12C Uncommon sense N E W S SEEPAGETHREE Alan Arkin honoured By AVA TURNQUEST Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org T HE seizure of two illegal fishing vessels this weekend and increased reports of poachers in the Ragged Island chain have heightened the concerns of the R oyal Bahamas Defence Force. Reports reaching The Tri bune late last night indicated that another vessel may have been seized in addition to Saturday mornings catch, which led to the arrest of 96 fishermen. Details could not be confirmed up to press time, however officials explained that the number of boats seized did not match initial reports, and RBDF mem bers were still scouring the area. Officers on the Defence Forces Dauntless Class P48 boarded and searched two 65ft vessels fishing shortly after 7am on Saturday. A ccording to reports from Spanish Wells, the boats were picked up on the Conchina banks, just west of Ragged Island, which arew ell known for its grouper schools. The grouper season officially closed at the beginning of this month. In a press statement yesterday, the Defence Force said: The search led to the confiscation of a large quantity of shelled and scaled fish, and the arrest of nearly 100 persons, believed to be Dominican fishermen, on board. The apprehended craft are being escorted by Defence Force vessels to the capital, where the foreign fishermen will be turned over to relevant authorities for further processing. Throughout the years, and most recently in October, local fishermen have cried 96 Dominicans held as reports of illegalf ishing incr ease McCOMBO OF THE DAY N E W The Tribune THEPEOPLESPAPER BIGGESTANDBEST L ATESTNEWSONWWW.TRIBUNE242.COM SEE page 13 FESTIVEPERFORMANCE: The Royal Bahamas Police Force held its Drum Beat Holiday Extravaganza Concert in conjunction with the National LEADInstitute and the PACEFoundation at the National Centre for the Performing Arts. Police officials including Commissioner Ellison Greenslade (left were present at the event. HOLIDAYEXTRAVAGANZA CONCERT FELIPEMAJOR/TRIBUNE STAFF By ALISON LOWE Tribune StaffR eporter email@example.com A POLICE officer who was accidentallys hot in the chest by another officer on Thursday has died, police said. Inspector Miller died o f his injuries in hospit al at 12.15pm yesterday. He had been admitted f or treatment on Thurs day morning after being shot during what policed escribed as a covert POLICEMAN SHOT BY ANOTHER OFFICER DIES OF INJURIES SEE page 13 UNMARRIED mothers once again accounted for the majority of all births in the Bahamas, and 20 per cent of all registered births were to nonBahamian women, accord ing to the latest figures from the Department of Statistics. In its completed Vital Statistics Report for 2008, the department said it recorded 5,480 live births, a decrease from 5,854 in 2007. The proportion of births registered rose from 87 per cent in 2007, to just over 93 per cent in 2008. Unwed mothers accounted for 60 per cent of all births. The largest number of UNMARRIED MO THERS A CC OUNT F OR MAJORITY OF BIRTHS IN BAHAMAS SEE page 13 By ALISON LOWE Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org ALLEGATIONS of over flowing and stinking toilets, insufficient food, beds and bedding, and sexual assault have again emerged from the Carmichael Road Detention Centre, with one recent detainee describing the experience as terrible. The man, who does not wish to be identified, was picked up recently by Immi gration officers and taken to the centre for around 24 hours. I know its not meant to be the Ritz Carlton, but it was really disgusting, said the man, who told The Tribune he felt compelled to raise awareness of the con ditions on behalf of those DET AINEE DESCRIBES TERRIBLE EXPERIEN CE A T DETENTION CENTRE SEE page 14 I N S I D E SECTIONINSIDE Real Estate
C M Y K C M Y K LOCAL NEWS PAGE 2, MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM HOLIDAY FUN: John Bull held a holiday event on Saturday at its B ay Street store. There was fun for all the family with magic shows, face painting, arts and crafts and balloon animals. Santa also paid a visit and there was a Junkanoo performance. JOHNBULLJUNKANOOEXTRAVAGANZA PHOTOS: Felip Major /Tribune staff
By MEGAN REYNOLDS Tribune Staff Reporter email@example.com STAGE and screen star Alan Arkin stepped out on the red carpet at the Atlantis hotel on Saturday night to be honoured with a Career Achievement Award by the Bahamas International Film Festival (BIFF The prolific actor whose performance in Little Miss Sunshine earned him the Academy Award for best actor in a supporting role in 2007, was presented with his latest accolade by the young actress who starred opposite him in the film. Abigail Breslin, 14, said she was honoured by the opportunity to pay tribute to one of the best actors ever who was kind and patient with her when they worked together on the movie set, as she was just aged nine. Alan is one of the best actors ever, Miss Breslin told t he audience of around 150 p eople in the Atlantis theatre. People always ask me if he gave me any acting tips, and while I cant remember any specific pointers or tips, I can say that whenever Alan became Grandpa, I was so convinced that he was actually Grandpa that it made me become more Olive, and I actually forgot that we were pretending. So I want to thank you (Mr Arkin acters that youve created, and I cant wait to see the characters that you have yet to bring to life, so congratulations. Mr Arkin praised the C M Y K C M Y K LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010, PAGE 3 TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM 3 pc Queen Sleigh Bed 3 pc Queen Sleigh Bed 1 pc Dresser 1 pc Dresser 1 pc Mirror 1 pc Mirror 2 pc Nightstands 2 pc Nightstands 1 pc 5 Drawer Chest 1 pc 5 Drawer Chest Queen 8 Pc Queen 8 Pc $3,730 $3,730 King 8 Pc Set King 8 Pc Set $3,940 $3,940Solid Wood Solid WoodT T h h e e T T h h e e J J a a v v a a G G a a l l l l e e r r y y J J a a v v a a G G a a l l l l e e r r y yWongs Plaza Wongs Plaza Madeira Street Madeira Street (242 (242 2335 2335Financing Available Through Commonwealth Bank L L a a F F r r o o n n t t e e r r a a L L a a F F r r o o n n t t e e r r a a By DENISE MAYCOCK Tribune Freeport Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org FREEPORT: Sir Jack Hayward, one of the principal owners of the Grand Bahama Port Authority, expressed his annoyance over the high electricity cost and inefficiency in power service, which he says are hindering major investments in Freeport. He noted that big companies have already pulled out of Freeport because of the electricity cost, and others have sustained major equipment damage and loss as a result of the frequent power outages. We had the glass company pull out and we had other people do the same, Sir Jack commented during a press conference in the Port Authority Boardroom. We (also plaints from Pharmachem. Every time there is a power cut it blows out some of their machinery and computers, and the power company has not been compensating them. In March, Fenestration and Glass Services closed its $20 million investment in Freeport because of the high cost of power and poor service reliability of the Grand Bahama Power Company. CEO Steve Howes reported at the time that they were being were charged six times the price of electrici-ty the company would be billed in North Carolina, where it has relocated. In addition to a power bill of $120,000, the QueensH ighway-based company a lso lost critical manufacturing equipment, resultingin at least $170,000 damage, as a result of surges in pow er supply on numerous occa sions. Polymers International L imited, a major plastics manufacturing plant locat-ed on Queens Highway, were also hit with electricity bills amounting to $500,000a month, forcing the com pany to lay off 26 contractors. Greg Ebelhar, chief oper ating officer, said the electricity costs is nearly five times that of its nearest US competitor. Sir Jack said the Port Authority has been very concerned over the power situation and has no plansto approve any request for rate hikes. The high cost of electricity and frequent power outages discourage industry, he said. It is something we were fighting against. We had no control over it except to set their rates which we had resisted them putting up rates over the past two years. Providing such inefficient electricity, we are not going to approve any hike in rates. I hope that they can bring in more generating equipment and more reliable equipment, but I hope also that they will bring theirprices down and read the meters, Sir Jack said. Even though many resi dential customers had tak en steps to limit their power usage and consumption by turning off major appliances By ALISON LOWE Tribune Staff Reporter email@example.com SIX armed robberies took place between Friday and Saturday afternoon, with Cost Right supermarket at the Town Centre Mall targeted by three men armed with "high powered weapons", and two Nassau web shops also hit. Four men have been taken in for questioning in connection with two separate incidents, but up to press time last night, police were still on the lookout for those responsible in four of the matters. According Police Press Liaison Sergeant Chrislyn Skippings, the weekends activity began when police were called to an armed robbery at Flamingo Web Cafe, on Amos Ferguson Street and Poinciana Avenue, at around 2.35pm on Friday. They were informed that two men armed with handguns entered the business and demanded cash. "The culprits robbed the establishment and a customer of an undetermined amount of cash, said Sgt SkipSEE page 13 SIR JACK HAYWARD VOICES CONCERNS OVER ELECTRICITY Supermarket targeted in weekend armed robberies SEE page 15 Actor Alan Arkin honoured at BIFF SEE page 15 HONOUR: Alan Arkin
EDITOR, The Tribune. As a citizen of the Bahamas I would like to put in my 5 cents worth on the controversial matter between Customs and the Aircraft Charter Companies which are legally operating a very much needed s ervice to the tourists that come to the Bahamas as well as to the Bahamian public who would have a nightmare travelling to the Family I slands if it were not for these charter services. First and foremost if as I am made to understand that this law about Customs duty on aircraft has always been on the books then I suggest it be very quickly taken off the b ooks because it has never ever been made known to the public since Independence came to the Bahamas. Therefore making it is a gross injustice to all of a sudden to decide that you are now going to try to collect duties which for all intents and purposes was not applicable in the first place. I would be willing to bet a fortune that there has not been a Customs officer in the Bahamas with the exception of the top 3 or 4 (and I doubt even they knew) during the last 37 years of Indepedence that had any clue that this was a law on the books. I f this has been allowed to exist in this manner with Customs officers on a daily basis giving clearance to these aircraft for all of this time and not letting people know that they were required to pay duty then it cannot be fair and just to now come and say they are going to collect. Besides all of this, there is the nightmare of aircraft having been in the Bahamas for 30 years or more and havingh ad three or four different owners during that time span and now the innocent person who owns the aircraft is being hounded to pay, when if Customs had known and beend oing their job the individual who brought the aircraft inw ould have had to pay the duty in the first place and it would not be a problem today, because it cannot be fair if Customs allowed someone else to break the law and then decides to penalize me for their negligence. Civil Aviation is supposed to be trying to clean up the charter industry to ensure the safety of the flying public, but this is not the way to go about this because the legal charter companies have to spend a small fortune to maintain their aircraft and keep them up to standards that can pass Civil Aviation inspections in order to keep a licence. While the hackers do not maintain their aircraft thus putting the flying public at grave risk. Also if it is fair for taxi operators to be able to get taxis duty free then it should also be fair for legal charter companies to get duty free privileges as well because, as I said before, they are supplying a very necessary service for tourists and Bahamians alike. I am writing this letter so that all fair-minded Bahamians can see and know what the true story behind all of this hullabaloo is really alla bout and give their support for fairness and equality. All who know me know that I strive every day to make sure that what belongs to the Treasury legitimately gets to go in the Treasury but fairness must be given to all. ABNER PINDER Spanish Wells, Eleuthera, December 4, 2010. C M Y K C M Y K EDITORIAL/LETTERS TO THE EDITOR PAGE 4, MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THE TRIBUNE The Tribune Limited NULLIUS ADDICTUS JURARE IN VERBA MAGISTRI Being Bound to Swear to The Dogmas of No Master L EON E. H. DUPUCH, Publisher/Editor 1903-1914 S IR ETIENNE DUPUCH, Kt., O.B.E., K.M., K.C.S.G., (Hon. P ublisher/Editor 1919-1972 Contributing Editor 1972-1991 EILEEN DUPUCH CARRON, C.M.G., M.S., B.A., LL.B. P ublisher/Editor 1972Published Daily Monday to Saturday S hirley 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 Advertising Manager (242 C irculation Department (242 N assau Fax: (242 Freeport, Grand Bahama: 1-(242 W EBSITE w ww.tribune242.com updated daily at 2pm JAMAICAS justice system is facing a serious problem of witness tampering. According to Jamaicas weekend Gleane r the matter came up for discussion last week at a case-management conference in t he Home Circuit Court. In many cases, the complaint was that witnesses could not be f ound. O ne of the judges suggested that if a witness had disappeared, the case should be thrown out. However, as it was pointed out such action would only encourage the dis a ppearance of more witnesses with more cases being thrown out for lack of evidencea nd accused guilty or not going free without trial. The whole judicial system w ould collapse. A Jamaican defence lawyer brought to the Circuit Courts attention five men accused of murder whose case has been on the courts calendar for the past six years. However, the case has now been put off because of insufficient jurors. J amaicas Director of Public Prosecutions, while sympathising with judges and lawyers, a cknowledged that a lot of witness intimidation was taking place in Jamaica. She said that as prosecutors they are operating in a challenging environment where a lot of people are afraid to testify and there are instances where witnesses are killed. However, she said, we would be handing a weapon to perpetrators to just simply have their friends put potential witnesses in fear b ecause they know the system has a new rule that once the witnesses do not turn up in court, the case is automatically thrown out. She said that a balance had to be arrived at, always bearing in mind that the accused had to be charged within a reasonable time. We have to strike a balance too in the challenging environment, the high crime rate and intimidation of witnesses, she said. D oes the Bahamas have the same problem? The answer is yes, but certainly not to the same degree. We have heard of a case in which a family is being terrorised right from a prison cell. They have been threatened that if they talk, they will be killed or their home will be burned down, we were told. It is understood that this family is so frightened that in three years they have changed homes 10 times. This is a murder case. We have heard of another case very similar in nature where henchmen of the accused torture witnesses by threatening reminders, either by phone or in person, as to what would happen if they talked. These are cases of which we are aware. However, we have been told that t here are others, and that witness tampering is becoming a problem. S everal years ago a well known drug lord was jailed. T here were several killings, some in F reeport, some in Nassau. Our reporters were always told that they were murders of retaliation one of the boys of a certain drug gang getting even with the boys ofa nother gang. They were slowly wiping each other out. All of our investigations led to ac ertain cell at HM Prison, Fox Hill. This is very serious. Somehow this threat t o society has to be neutralised. Prison administrators should know who these people are. A system has to be found to cut off their contact with the outside world and prevent them from directing their boys to do their dirty work for them. When discovered such persons regardless of their otherc harges should be jailed for life as being a danger to society. And the boys on the o utside should also be severely dealt with. If our system cannot protect the witnesses then those who threaten them should be locked away so that they cannot harm them. We have been told that a serious drug war is going on in the East Street, Market Street and Blue Hill Road areas, which would take in Bain Town. The allegation is that some criminal deportees are mixed up in t his tug-of-war over drugs. Criminal deportees those jailed in another country for serious crime, now being deported back to their last address are causing havoc in Trinidad and Jamaica and the rest of the Caribbean. It is understood that the situation is so bad in Trinidad that a plan is now under serious consideration to hold court in prison u sing computer screens. It has been decided that to move prisoners to regular courts as is done on a daily basis in Nassau is much too dangerous. We have been advocating such a change of court venue for Nassau for some time. Trinidad is finally going to do it to protect its citizens. Criminal deportees, who have served time in other criminal systems, bring a certain criminal sophistication back with them when they return to home turf. There are those who maintain that it is this element that has infiltrated the local scene. It is devastating Trinidad and Jamaica, we were told. Nassau, they say, is only catching up. Law about Customs duty on aircraft should be quickly taken off books LETTERS firstname.lastname@example.org Claim criminal deportees creating problems EDITOR, The Tribune. Our Bahamaland is in crisis. Crime is ram pant and some of our young people are seemingly lost in a world uf decadence and deviant behaviour. But there is hope for a change and we can start by taking back our basketball parks. These basketball parks that are in our com munities should be safe zones, but as they are now they are very unsafe. A basketball game sometimes turns into a fight amongst the players, people use foul language and play music spouting foul lyrics and theres the smoking of tobacco and marijuana cigarettes and the open consumption of alcoholic beverages. I say its high time we the people become brave enough to take back our basketball parks. How? What we need to do is make these places Christian themed basketball parks. By that I mean we need to repaint over all of that gang graffiti and now erect billboard signs displaying Biblical scriptures like the Lords prayer, the 23rd Psalm and the ten commandments. We should also erect large, towering crosses of concrete that can withstand the elements and time. Some of our people, though misguided, still have a deep respect and fear of God. There should also be a sign of park rules: 1. No fighting 2. No cursing 3. No graffiti 4. No weapons 5. No loud music 6. No smoking 7. No alcohol If these rules are abided by then these parks will indeed become safe zones. There should also be the placement of uniformed park war dens to help maintain order, control and discipline. Further to this, the church must get involved for it is often said that the church does not take their message out into the community anymore. Therefore the churches in the areas of these basketball parks should adopt them and hold regular evening services at least twice per week. These services should be of a casual and informal nature where the attendees may comea s they are and dressed as they are. Services should be no more that 40 minutes long as young people can become bored very easily and quickly. There would be the usual singing and p reaching but the preaching of the word must take a tone that is soft spoken, kind and uplifting. We must not preach down to the attendees, raining down hellfire, damnation and judgment upon them as this would be a turnoff and they may not return. There must be no collection of an offering as these services should be focused on the giving of the word not the receiving of money because attendees may feel that the church is only doing these services to take their money which would be another turn-off. At the end of each service there should be a call-out to those in attendance who wish to come forward and receive the cleansing of the Holy Spirit and be born again thus setting them on the right road in turning their lives around. This is how we can change the minds of our wayward youth. Phone and e-mail contacts should also be given out for those wishing to seek further counsel. Yes there is a lot of talk out there but I feel this is a plan of action in the right direction. I am not a very religious person but I do recognise the power that religion has and the impact it can have on a persons life. These are desperate times and though this plan may seem small I feel it can aid greatly in making a positive change in our great Bahamaland. Let us remember the song that says it only takes a spark to get the fire going. DEREK Nassau, November 29, 2010. Lets take back our basketball parks
C M Y K C M Y K LOCAL NEWS T HE TRIBUNE MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010, PAGE 13 TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM o ut for greater security meas ures against poachers most notably Dominican who were said to rape and plunder Bahamian waters indiscriminately. Those most affected called for authorities to form an international coalition to crack down on companies which profit from poaching in Bahamian waters. When a boat from the Dominican Republic was captured in October with more than 25,000lbs of illegal fish, Myron LockhartBain, former chief counsel lor of Ragged Island, said the only way to alleviate the problem was to implement stricter regulations which a ffect the boat owners. M r Lockhart-Bain suggested cooperation between Bahamian and Dominicang overnments to impose stricter fines and sentencing for poachers. Brent Symonette, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, declined to comment on whether or not there could possibly be a diplomatic solution to the poaching issue. However, Mr Symonette said: Obviously each coun try knows where its fishing waters are. We have very fruitful waters and we intend on protecting our fishing rights. At the end of the grouper season, we increased patrol in certain areas and the recent arrests are a result of that. operation. Pressed for further details on the circumstances surrounding the i ncident at the time, Assist ant Commissioner of P olice Hulan Hanna said he could provide no more information because it would risk compromising the polices work. Officers were participating in an operation in s outhwest New Providence when an officer was accid entally shot to the upper body by one of his colleagues. This was a police opera tion, we cannot say anything else about it. A lot of the work officers do are by n ature covert, and if we c omment on some of the t hings we have to engage in, it would compromisef uture operations, he said. A tribute to the officer was expected to take place during the polices vari ety concert at the National Centre for the Performing Arts yesterday evening. births were to women aged 25 to 29. Teenage mothers accounted for about 12 per cent of registered births. T en per cent of these births w ere to girls under 15. T he majority (75 per cent) of all registered births were to mothers whose usual residence is New Providence. In 2008, registered births to non-Bahamian mothers s tood at 20 per cent. Just over three quarters (79 per c ent) of the non-Bahamian mothers were of Haitian origin. The year 2007 recorded the highest sex ratio of male to female registered births, reporting 105 boys f or every 100 girls born. H owever, in 2008 a d ecline of 97 boys to every 1 00 girl births were recorde d. T here were a total of 1,863 deaths in 2008, resulting in a crude death rate of 5.5. Mortalities among the male population continued to be the highest at 1,026; w hile the incidences of d eath for females stood at 8 37 in 2008. Hypertensive and heart diseases remained the major causes of death among men and women. T he second largest number of all deaths occurred among persons with cancer. Breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men continue to be the two m ajor types of cancer d eaths. D eaths caused by AIDS d eclined for the second consecutive year. Infant immortality rate i ncreased slightly over the p revious year from 17.6 in 2 007, to 17.9 in 2008. A similar growth pattern w as registered for stillb irths from 14.2 in 2007, to 15.0 in 2008. T here were 1,969 marriages recorded in the Bahamas in 2008, which s howed a slight decline of 2.6 per cent from the prev ious year. The marriage rate declined to 5.8 in 2008 from 6.1 in 2007. in their homes, they complained that their monthly bills were still very high and suspected that the company was estimatingt heir bills based on past billings. Sir Jack, who also owns a residence in Freeport, said he too r eceived a bill for over $600 although he had been off the island for an extended period of time. We vacated it for a whole month, cut off all electricity: the light, air condition, even hot water heater, and we still got a bill for $625 when there is no one at the cottage at all, he said. L ast Thursday, the G B Power Company announced that Emera had purchased 55.4 per cent of MaruEnergys (a Japanese based company) interest in the company, making it them ajority owner of the power company with a total interest of 80.4 per cent. Emera CEO Chris Huskilson also announced plans to build a new $35 million generating station to provide more reliable and efficient power supply on Grand Bahama. He also stated that the company will install two, one megawatt wind turbine, early next year after a wind study on thei sland which concluded that wind energy is possible. We want to make the islands electrical system less reliant on fossil fuel and less susceptible to variable fossil fuel prices, M r Huskilson said. Sir Jack was pleased by the news and called it a real step forward for the power company. It is great, we couldnt bem ore delighted in the Port Authority, he said. SEEPAGEFIVEANDBUSINESSSECTION POLICEMAN SHOT BY ANOTHER OFFICER DIES OF INJURIES FROM page one FROM page one SIR JACK HAYWARD VOICES CONCERNS RBDF FEARS AFTER PO ACHING ARRESTS FROM page three UNMARRIED MOTHERS ACCOUNT FOR MAJORITY OF BIRTHS IN BAHAMAS FROM page one ON-SONG: Singers perform at the Drum Beat Holiday Extravaganza Conc ert held by the Royal Bahamas P olice Force in conjunction with the N ational LEADInstitute and the PACE F oundation at the National Centre for t he Performing Arts last night. Felip Major /Tribune staff DRUM BEAT HOLIDAY EXTRAVAGANZA CONCERT
who remain inside. Immigration Minister B rent Symonette yesterday p romised he would have some of the mans claims investigated those regarding the toilets saying that ift rue, this would be totally u nacceptable. He also said he was unaware of a bedding issue in the Detention Centre, saying the last timehe visited there was bedding p rovided for detainees. However, he further charged that if conditions are uncomfortable then people shouldnt break the law. Those in The Bahamas working illegally should regularise their status or leave immediately, said Mr Symonette. The detainee said his previous work permit hade lapsed, and he had applied to the Department of Immigration for a new one to be issued. His claims come over a y ear and a half after the government commissioned a report on conditions at the Detention Centre following repeated claims of abuse,i nsufficient food and generally squalid living conditions at the immigration holding centre. The government claimed the findings of the review,w hich involved a tour of the facility by a number of government and non-government individuals, including psychologist Dr DavidA llen, Social Services Director Melony Zonicle, Archdeacon James Palacious, Royal Bahamas Defence Force Senior Lieu-t enant Frederick Brown and Immigration Director Jack Thompson, were that some of those allegations could not be substantiated while other concerns would bea ddressed. Despite promises from previous minister of state for immigration, Branville McCartney, that a reportc ommissioned into conditions at the facility would be released, it never has been. In an interview with The Tribune in April, Minister of I mmigration and Deputy Prime Minister Brent Symonette said he was unsure if the report wouldb e released. However, Mr Symonette s aid at that time that as far as he knew there are no outstanding issues at the Deten-t ion Centre. Yesterday, the detainee t old T he Tribune t hat after having been brought to the Detention Centre at around5 .30pm, he and a number of others were not fed anything until the following morning. F or breakfast, detainees were given porridge with w eevils in it. A lot of the people I spoke to in there said that ifi t werent for friends or family bringing them food, they w ould not have enough to eat in general, said the man. A visit to the mens bathr oom was a horrifying experience, he claimed. The toilets were blocked and overflowing. There was (faecesw ere no urinals, just a hole in t he wall where I guess it used to be, and no toilet paper. There was water leaking from a pipe on to the floor. You wouldnt want to gow ithin five feet of those toilets but if you were at that end of the dorm you could smell everything. There just looked like t here was so much potential for disease to be spread throughout the place, said the man. Showers for bathing were a lso located in the same area as the toilets, making the possibility of washing another daunting prospect, he added. I met a Cuban man who had been in there for six months. Others had been in there for a couple of years. The Cuban guy said thec leanest place was in the wash-house where they had a hose and so he used that to s hower, said the man. According to the detainee, t here were no tables or chairs in the area, meaning that even sitting down excepto n the floor was a difficulty. Meanwhile, the man heard secondhand stories about the alleged experiences of oth-e rs which were more appalling than his own i ncluding claims of rape and a woman who was haemorrhaging blood but went with-o ut requested medical attention for two or three days. People said no-one except the guards ever come in to check on peoplesh ealth or see how people are doing, said the man. With around 70 people in t he Detention Centre at the time he was admitted, there were only around 50 beds. This meant that there were a lot of people who w ere not able to sit or lie down, and there was no bedding whatsoever. In weather like this, if you didnt have much to w ear, you would freeze, said the man. Mr Symonette said the g overnment has been mak ing efforts to keep the num ber of people at the Detent ion Centre to a minimum and recently the facility was almost empty after a number of repatriations. However, following the d estruction of one of the dormitory buildings in late 2 008 during an alleged arson attack by a detainee, only a finite number of beds area vailable. When we do have apprehensions we cant control the numbers that we appre hend, said Mr Symonette. C M Y K C M Y K LOCAL NEWS PAGE 14, MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM DETAINEE DESCRIBES TERRIBLE EXPERIENCE AT DETENTION CENTRE F ROM page three I MMIGRATION MINISTER B rent Symonette
pings. They fled the area in a red 1997 Mitsubishi Montero licence plate 118324, which was stolen from outside the establishment. A short while later police recovered the vehicle on Cordeaux Avenue and Exuma Street." One of the crooks was wearing a white T-shirt and a black pants, the other a multicoloured shirt and blue jeans. At around 7.15pm, police attended the scene of the next reported armed robbery on Lincoln Boulevard, south of Wulff Road. Sgt Skippings said: "A female was inside her residence when she was approached by a dark male wearing a dark hooded jacket with a scarf over his face, allegedly armed with a handgun, demanding cash. The culprit robbed the woman of an undisclosed amount of cash and an ipod and fled the area on foot in an unknown direction." A man arriving home at 3am on Williams Lane, in Nassau Village, became the next armed robbery victim when he was accosted in his driveway by a masked man armed with a shotgun. The robber demanded cash but was told by the victim he had none. The victim was then approached by another man armed with a handgun who took his vehicle, a 2001 black Ford Ranger, licence plate number 18393. The two men fled the area in the vehicle. At around 8.20pm that day, police recovered the truck at the Texaco Service Station, on Faith Avenue and took two men, aged 23 and 40, into custody in connection with the incident. Island Luck web shop on East Street and Windsor Lane was hit by an armed robber a t around 5pm on Saturday. Police report that a darkskinned man with a gold tooth, wearing a black-hooded sweater and short blue jeans, entered the building and demanded cash. He got away with an undisclosed amount of money and fled the area. Meanwhile, it was around 6.20pm when three men allegedly armed with highpowered weapons approached a woman security guard at Cost Right foodstore at the Town Centre Mall, led her into the store and demanded cash. "The culprits robbed the establishment of an undetermined amount of cash and fled the area on foot west on to Graham Drive, Yellow Elder.It is reported that one of the suspects wore a red jacket with red tennis shoes, a black pants and a white Tshirt," said Sgt Skippings. Just under an hour later, police were called to another armed robbery at Baillou HIll Road and Graham Drive. Officers were informed that a woman, while waiting at a bus stop on Baillou Hill Road, was approached by two men one of whom was armed with a knife. The men robbed the woman of her cell phone and fled in a red two-door Honda Accord. Two men, aged 19 and 22, are assisting police with their investigations. C M Y K C M Y K LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010, PAGE 15 TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM young actress as being as professional and brilliant as anyone he has ever worked with. Having just finished three films and with an autobiographical book to be published in March, Mr Arkin has clearly not slowed the pace of his expansive artistic career. In a candid interview with fellow New York native Jeffery Lyons, the host of the TV show Lyons Den, Mr Arkin divulged some of the highlights and pitfalls of his experiences from the stage to the silver screen, and then as a director, producer, writer and musician. Mr Arkin broke into showbusiness after he wrote Harry Belafontes mega-hit The Banana Boat Song (also known as Day-O), and went on to pursue his passion, a career in acting, with the Second City improvisational troupe in Chicago. From Chicago he went on to Broadway and won a Tony award for his first stage role as the lead in Carl Reiners Enter Laughing in 1963. His first film performance as a Soviet sailor in the farcical 1966 comedy The Russians Are Coming! The Russians Are Coming! won him an Oscar nomination, and in 1968 his lead role in The Heart is a Lonely Hunter secured Mr Arkin his second Oscar nomination. His career continue to expand as he developed his skills as an actor, director, producer and a writer, starring in films too numerous to mention throughout the years into the new millennium. After viewing the montage of his work, Mr Arkin said: Its like looking back on a family album for me. I see things I would like to have done better, but thats good, it means I have grown. Its been the only thing I know how to do basically, and I have got to make a living like everybody else in the world; except for some people who live in the Bahamas, he quipped. FROM page three Actor Alan Ar kin honoured at BIFF Supermarket targeted in weekend armed robberies FROM page three
A LI AKBAR DAREINI, AP G EORGE JAHN, AP TEHRAN, Iran Iran delivered a resolute m essage on the eve of talks with six world powers: We're mining our own uranium now, so there is no stopping our nuclear ambitions. The Islamic Republic said S unday it has produced its first batch of locally mined uranium ore for enrichment, making it independent of foreign count ries for a process the West fears is geared toward producing nuclear arms. No matter the U.N. sanctions o ver the program, "our nuclear activities will proceed and they will witness greater achievements in the future," Iranian n uclear chief Ali Salehi told state-run Press TV. Western officials downplayed the announcement, saying it had been expected and that Iran did not have enough ore to maintain the large-scale enrichment program that Tehran says it is building as a source of fuel f or an envisaged network of nuclear reactors. "Given that Iran's own supply of uranium is not enough for a peaceful nuclear energy program, this calls into further question Iran's intentions and raises additional concerns at a time when Iran needs to a ddress the concerns of the international community," said Mike Hammer, spokesman of the U.S. National Security Council. Sunday's announcement makes clear that Iran does not consider uranium enrichment t o be up for discussion at the talks beginning Monday in G eneva. Tehran is determined to expand the program insteado f scrapping it as the U.N. Security Council demands. Expectations for the talks had been low even before the announcement, with Iran saying it is prepared to discuss nuclear i ssues only in the context of global disarmament. Officials from some of the six powers have said they would be pleased if negotiations yielded no more than agreement to meet at a later date to explore common themes. The ultimate aim of the U.S., R ussia, China, Britain, France and Germany is to commit Tehran to give up enrichment because of its potential use in making nuclear arms. T he talks in Geneva the f irst in over a year are meant to lay the cornerstone for establ ishing trust. Tehran says it does not want atomic arms, but as it b uilds on its capacity to potentially make such weapons, neither Israel nor the U.S. have ruled out military action if the Islamic Republic fails to heed U.N. Security Council demands to freeze enrichment and other n uclear programs. The talks are expected to take two days. Saeed Jalili, Iran's top nuclear negotiator, will meet with EU foreign affairs chief Catherine Ashton, with Ashton's office saying she will act "on behalf" of the U.S., Russia, China, Britain, France a nd Germany. In fact, senior officials for those six powers will attend and do much of the talking with Tehran. Ahead of the talks, Western o fficials urged Tehran to a ddress international concerns about its nuclear activities. I nvoking possible military confrontation over Iran's n uclear defiance, British Defense Secretary Liam Foxs aid Saturday that the Geneva talks need to make a serious s tart toward resolving the issue. "We want a negotiated solution, not a military one but Iran needs to work with us to achieve that outcome," he said." We will not look away or back down." U .S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said it was up to I ran to restore trust about its nuclear intentions, urging it to come to Geneva prepared to "firmly, conclusively reject the pursuit of nuclear weapons." G erman Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle said an uclear-armed Iran "was unacceptable for us." Sunday's announcement by Salehi burdened the pre-talk atmosphere, adding to tensions left by the assassination last week of a prominent Iranian n uclear scientist and the wounding of another. Salehi, head of the Atomic Energy Organization of Iran and the country's vice president, said Iran had for the first time delivered domestically mined raw uranium to a processing facility allowing it to b ypass U.N. sanctions prohibiting import of the material. Salehi said the uranium ore concentrate, known as yellow cake, was produced at the G achin uranium mine in southe rn Iran and delivered to the uranium conversion facility in t he central city of Isfahan for reprocessing. Y ellowcake is processed into uranium hexafluoride, whichl ater can be turned into a gas used as feedstock for enriching u ranium. Uranium enriched to low grades is used for fuel in nuclear reactors, but further enrichment makes it suitable for atomic bombs. S alehi said the delivery was evidence that the mysteriousb ombings targeting the two Iranian nuclear scientists would n ot slow the country's progress. "Today, we witnessed the shipment of the first domesti cally produced yellowcake ... from Gachin mine to the Isfa h an nuclear facility," said Salehi, whose comments wereb roadcast live on state television. C M Y K C M Y K INTERNATIONAL NEWS PAGE 16, MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM Iran claims nuclear advance ahead of talks (AP Photo/Vahid Salemi PRESSBRIEFING: Irans top nuclear negotiator Saeed Jalili, right, speaks with media, during a press briefing, in Tehran, Iran, Saturday, Dec. 4, 2010. A picture of Majid Shahriari, a prominent nuclear scientist, is seen on the bottom of the podium, who was killed in a bomb attack on Monday, Nov. 29. HAROLD HECKLE, Associated Press MADRID Spanish airports were back operating at normal levels Sunday after a 24-hour wildcat strike by air traffic controllers caused travel chaos for hundreds of thousands of people on one of the country's busiest holiday weekends. The government quashed the strike Saturday, announcing an emergency measure calling on the controllers to get back to work or face the threat of jail time. Shortly after the measure was implemented, controllers started trickling back to their posts. More than 4,000 flights were scheduled and out of 296 controllers supposed to be working, 286 were at their posts, enabling airports to "operate fully," Spain's civil aviation authority said. The government implemented a "state of alarm," normally reserved for catastrophes such as earthquakes or floods, to get planes back in the skies and clear chaotic airports clogged with irate travelers who had seen their holiday hopes dashed by the unannounced strike. Spain's airpor ts recovering from controller strike
C M Y K C M Y K INTERNATIONAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010, PAGE 17 TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM IAN JAMES,AP CARACAS, Venezuela From mangrove swamps in Venezuela to lowland forests in Indonesia, entire communities of plants and animals are under threat. Now scientists are figuring out how to catalog and map the world's most threatened ecosystems, j ust like their familiar lists of endangered species. S ome experts say drawing up a global "Red List" of vanishing ecosystems would help them spot looming crises caused by climate change, cutting of forests and many other problems. The list also would sharpen the focus on areas that should be handled as conservation priorities. Along the shore of Venezuela's Lake Maracaibo, runoff filled with sediment and pesticides has been smothering animals that once lived among the roots of the mangrove trees, including crabs, fish hatchlings and shellfish, said Luz Esther Sanchez, a marine biologist and ecologist. She has been studying such dead zones and says saving the mangroves requires a comprehensive effort to reduce water pollution and halt the clearing of other forests upstream. "Declaring the mangrove ecosystem threatened would be very useful for conservation," Sanchez said. "People stand up to defend dolphins. People stand up to defend turtles. But I've never seen them defend the mangrove forest with the same vehemence." An international working group of biologists and conservation experts has been developing a system for classifying threats to ecosystems, and in October presented an initial blueprint at a U.N. conference on biodiversity in Nagoya, Japan. "If we can get a good, rig orous scientific system in place that is relatively easy to monitor worldwide, ... you can follow these changes and describe them and ring the alarm bell where things might go wrong," said Dutch con servation expert Piet Wit. He chairs the Commission of Ecosystem Management of the International Union for Conservation of Nature, or IUCN, which maintains the Red List of thousands of threatened plants and animals that is the international standard. Some scientists caution that agreeing on precise categories to divide up habitats would be a monumental task. But many already agree on some ecosystems that are threatened or endangered, including many coral reefs, salt marshes, mountain habitats threatened by rising global temperatures, grasslands in southern Russia and Brazil's Atlantic forest. Logging poses a serious threat to the lowland forests on Indonesia's Borneo Island that are home to endangered orangutans. In the Andes, expanding farmland has frag mented the cloud forests where spectacled bears live. Scientists aim to map and save endangered habitats (AP Photo/Ed Wray, File LOGGINGTHREAT: In this Nov. 5, 2006 file photo, Kessi, a young female orangutan looks at the stump where her hand was cut off by plantation workers at an orangutan rehabilitation center in Palangkaraya, Kalimantan, Indonesia. Logging poses a serious threat to the lowland forests on Indonesias Borneo Island that are home to endangered orangutans and scientists are figuring out how to catalog and map the worlds most threatened ecosystems, just like their familiar list of endangered species. ( AP Photo/Dita Alangkara, File) CUTDOWN: In this Nov. 2, 2007 file photo, logs sit before being t ransported as natural forest is seen on the right in Pangkalan Kerinci, Riau province, on Sumatra island, Indonesia.
B RETT ZONGKER, Associated Press WASHINGTON W hen The Beatles were storming America, Oprah Winfrey had the band's poster on her bedroom wall, Merle Haggard was free from prison, Jerr y Herman was making Broadway sing and Bill T. Jones was not yet a dancer but growing up in a migrant labor camp. O n Sunday, these leading artists who followed divergent paths since the 1960s joined Paul McCartney to receive the Kennedy Center Honors. They h eard accolades from President Barack Obama. "Although the honorees on this stage each possess a staggering amount of talent, the truth is, they aren't being reco gnized tonight simply because of their careers as great lyricists or songwriters or dancers or entertainers," Obama said. "Instead, they're being honored for their unique ability to bring us closer together and to capture something larger about who we are not just as A mericans, but as human beings." Stars also were performing as part of the nation's top prize for those who define U.S. culture through the arts. The president and first lady Michelle Obama had arrived and former Secretary of State Colin Powell w as sitting with them in their box. Gwen Stefani and her band, N o Doubt, were going to perform the Beatles' "Hello, Goodbye." "It's so hard doing someone else's song, especially a genius,"S tefani said. Secretary of State H illary Rodham Clinton hosted a dinner Saturday for the honorees, along with visiting celebrities, including Stefani, Julia Roberts, Claire Danes,S teven Tyler from Aerosmith. T he guests also included veteran entertainers Carol Channing, Angela Lansbury and Sidney Poitier. Clinton marveled at the d iverse "genres and generations" of artists. "I am writing a cable about it, which I'm sure you'll find s oon on your closest website," she joked after a week of dealing with fallout from the WikiLeaks release of confidential diplomatic dispatches. S he also confessed to "seve ral waves of teen girl hysteria" over The Beatles during h er youth. Clinton said McCartney's life had connected people around the world. C hanning said she was excited to perform for Herman. He's going to cry, I just know it," said Channing, who h as been corresponding with the president to press for fundi ng for arts teachers. The former Beatle, making his second visit to Washingtont his year for a culture award, said the admiration is mutual.I n June, he won the Gershwin Prize for Popular Song from t he Library of Congress. "You know, great things just c ome in bundles," he said. "I am a big fan of this president, and I think he's a great man whose got some difficulties. ... I'm very honored to be with him and his family, and I'm also a big fan of Hillary's, too." S ince the 1960s, the new Kennedy Center honorees have h elped define television, dance, theater and music. For Winfrey, the prize comes during the 25th and final season of her talk show and just before she launches her new cable net work, OWN, on Jan. 1. After her Washington visit, she will take about 300 members of her a udience to Australia for a vacation over the holidays. "You know what's interesting is she spends her life cele brating others, but when it comes time for her, she's very reluctant really," Winfrey's best friend Gayle King told The Associated Press. K ing said it was a fitting trib ute for Winfrey as a communicator, actress, producer and humanitarian. "They're recognizing her whole body of work," King s aid. "She's not just a talk show host." Winfrey was one of the first to support Obama in his presidential run. What can I say about our final honoree. Michelle and I love Oprah Winfrey, personally love this woman," he said. And the more you know Oprah the more spectacular you realize her character and her soul are, the more you appreciate what a wonderfulg ifted person she is." P erformers who will honor Winfrey and the others will be a s urprise until they appear on stage Sunday night, but Winfrey has admitted she doesn'tl ike surprises. At the State Department, the o rnate Benjamin Franklin room was a swirl of Hollywood, N ashville, New York and Washington power players, i ncluding President Bill Clinton. Roberts said it was both exciting and nerve wracking.S he said the mix of art and politics "can converge in a veryi nteresting way, so when it's done right, it's really exciting." A fter the honors were announced in September, J ones, the son of potato pickers, said he could recall dreaming of big things as a 9-year-old boy in upstate New York. He went on to create the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company in 1982 after collegew ith his late partner Arnie Zane. His work has tackled r acism, AIDS and other tough issues, sometimes sparking out rage. Jones said he's often felt like an outsider, yet he's being honored for helping to shape the country. His portrait also is included in a current Smithsonian Institution exhibit, the first to explore the impact of s exual orientation on art history. The exhibition has recently drawn complaints from conservatives. "Someone asked me last night how I feel and it was Julia Roberts," Jones said. "I feel as if it's a dream and I'm speaking to Julia Roberts." O pera singer Jessye Norman, who toasted Jones' work Saturday, said she admired him for being brave enough to stand alone at times in his advocacy on social and political issues. C M Y K C M Y K INTERNATIONAL NEWS PAGE 18, MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM -RE9DFDQF\$QHVWDEOLVKHG1DVVDXEDVHG FRPSDQ\VHHNVWRWKHSRVLWLRQRI $VVLVWDQW)LQDQFLDO&RQWUROOHU $OO DSSOLFDQWV0867SRVVHVVWKHIROORZLQJDVVLQJJUDGHVRQDOOSDUWVRIWKH&3$ H[DPLQDWLRQ \HDUVH[SHULHQFHZRUNLQJZLWKDQ WURQJDQDO\WLFDOVNLOOV WURQJRUJDQL]DWLRQDOVNLOOVZLWKWKH DELOLW\WRZRUNLQGHSHQGHQWO\ $WKRURXJKZRUNLQJNQRZOHGJHRI LFURVRIW([FHO 7KHDELOLW\WROHDUQTXLFNO\ ([FHOOHQWFRPPXQLFDWLRQDQGWHDP ZRUNVNLOOV 7KHDELOLW\WRPDQDJHPXOWLSOHWDVNV DQGUHVSRQVLELOLWLHVVLPXOWDQHRXVO\ ,QWHUHVWHGSHUVRQVVKRXOGVXEPLWWKHLU UHVXPHVYLDHPDLOWRDVVWQDQFLDOFRQWUROOHU#KRWPDLOFRP$OOUHVXPHVPXVWEHUHFHLYHGE\ WK 'HFHPEHU 2QO\SHUVRQVPHHWLQJ$// UHTXLUHPHQWVDERYHQHHGDSSO\ Winfrey, McCartney in DC for Kennedy Center Honors HONOREES: Secretary of State Hillary C linton, left, talks with Kennedy Center honorees for 2010 Jerry Herman, Merle Haggard, Bill T. Jones, and Paul McCartney while waiting for Oprah W hitney to arrive for a group photo after at a dinner held at the State Department honoring the recipients of the Kennedy Center Honors, in Washington, on Saturday, Dec. 4, 2010. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin
C M Y K C M Y K SECTIONB email@example.com MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THETRIBUNE $4. 68 $4. 51 $4. 69The information contained is from a third p arty and The Tribune can not be held responsible for errors and/or omission from the daily report.$ $4.30 $4.45 $4.34 By NEIL HARTNELL T ribune Business Editor T he Bahamas Property Fund is hoping to close leases for some of the vacant 18,000 square feet at its Bahamas Financial Centrep roperty within the next few months, in a bid to flow an extra $990,000 per annum into its b ottom line, as it targets adding at least another $30-$40 million worth of real estate to its portfolio as opportunities arise. C onfirming that the BISX-listed fund had targeted the creation of a $100 million-strong real estate portfolio when it was formed in 2 000, Michael Anderson, the Bahamas Property Funds administrator, told Tribune Busin ess that the real estate investment trust (REIT f inancial performance in 2011, as several potential tenants it was in discussion with were expected to sign long-term leases. H e also told Tribune Business that the Bahamas Property Fund was interested in d iversifying its real estate holdings, moving beyond the prime office properties it held currently into high-end shopping centres,w hile also eyeing long-term retail rental opportunities that could ultimately result Fund targeting $1m bottom line swing n B ISX-listed Bahamas Property Fund prioritises getting vacant 18,000 sq ft at Financial Centre rented, in bid to get CAM costs to bottom line n Optimistic some tenant deals will be closed in next few months, after 16% net income drop, with Financial Centre and One Marina Drive 82% and 95% leased n Looking at add at least another $30-$40m worth of real estate to existing $54m portfolio, as ambition to create $100m-strong business remains n Shopping centres and downtown Nassau redevelopment eyed as future opportunities, although no talks being held with any potential seller MICHAEL ANDERSON By ALISON LOWE Business Reporter Alowe@Tribunemedia.net The Water and Sewerage Corporation is targeting an increased level of private sector involvement in its opera tions, and is examining retrofitting its facilities with renewable energy, as it targets reducing non-revenue water from a potential 60 per cent of its supply to 23 per cent by 2020. Glen Laville, Water and Sewerages new general manager, said additional outsourcing of its functions to private companies will involve both the further construction and operation of reverse osmosis plants, plus sewerage treatment Water Corp: Inaction will taken water loss to 60% Government-owned Corporation targeting increased private sector help to reduce non-revenue water to 23% by 2020 Partners with Bahamas Renewable Energy Corporation for solar/wind power solution to Eleuthera water plant, seeking costs 25% below BEC Looks at outsourcing engineering department, and cutting water loss losses of $13-$16 million in Nassau and $6-7m in Family Islands Failure to act on water losses will force Corporation to increase supply from 10.6 million gallons of water to 14.1 million in 2014, and 17.1m gallons in 2020 SEE page 6B SEE page 4B B y NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editdor S enior Cable & Wireless executives have confirmed that the $15 million in net cash that they will inherit on the Bahamas Telecommunications Companys (BTC sheet will be used to at least partly cover the costs of the downsizing/restructuring that will see the companys work f orce reduced by 30 per cent. Tony Rice, Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC c hief executive, and Tim Pennington, its chief financial officer, disclosed this in a London conference call with analysts BTCS $15M NET CASH SET TO COVER RESTRUCTURE COSTS SEE page 7B By ALISON LOWE B usiness Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org B ahamasair has reached an out-of-court settlement with a former employee days before her legal action went to trial in the USc ourts over allegations she was dismissed for whistle blowing on US federal law violations supposedly com mitted by the airline. Bahamasair general manager, Henry Woods, deniedt he ex-employees claim that the airline had routinely violated US federal regula tions stemming from 2001 anti-terrorism legislation,a nd refused to comment on allegations that she was fired for exposing alleged wrongdoing on Bahamasairs part to the US authorities. Speaking to the claims of US federal regulation viola t ions by the national flag carrier, Mr Woods said: B AHAMASAIR DENIES WHISTLEBLOW FIRING SEE page 8B READY FORTAKEOFF: A Bahamasair Dash-8 waits for departure. By NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor Robin Hoods new Prince Charles store is probably 80 per cent complete and on target for a soft opening at the end of this week, its president and owner told Tribune Business, adding that the company was expecting to do at least as well as last year with Christmas sales at its Tonique Williams-Darling Highway location. I would say we are probably 80 per cent of the way there, and hopefully by the time next week rolls around, a week from now, we will be 95 per cent of the way there. We will be there, Sandy Schaefer told Tribune Business of the Prince Charles store, which will be located in the former Pepsi-Cola manufacturing plant. Were trying for some sort of soft opening at the end of [this] week. We will be open this month, but are not really planning a groundbreaking opening until mid-January. Mr Schaefer told Tribune Business that there were well over 100 construction workers at the Prince Charles site, New Robin Hood store % ready Owner targeting soft opening this week, and Prince Charles location will be % complete by Friday Hoping Christmas season will be at least as good as last year SEE page 8B By ALISON LOWE Business Reporter Alowe@tribunemedia.net Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham and the Bahamas Society of Engineers president have thrown their support behind private engineers being able to carry out building inspections in place of, or in addition to, government inspectors, the latter arguing that such a move would have a really phenomenal impact on expediting development. Speaking to engineers at the Bahamas Society of Engineers (BSE Minister Hubert Ingraham said he was in favour of private sector engineers being able to undertake building inspections and certi fication that it now takes the Government of the Bahamas weeks, PM backs building inspection outsource SEE page 9B
By ROYALFIDELITY CAPITAL MARKETS It was another slow week of trading in the Bahamian stock market. Investors traded in five out of the 24 listed securities, with all stocks remaining unchanged. EQUITY MARKET A total of 57,300 shares changed hands, representing an increase of 1,394 shares compared to the previ-ous week's trading volume of 55,906 shares. Commonwealth Bank (CBL the volume leader last week, tradinga volume of 55,000 shares to nsee nits stock price close unchanged at $6.85. FOCOL Holdings (FCL ed a volume of 1,000 shares to see its share price close unchanged at $5.46. BOND MARKET Fidelity Bank Bahamas Series B Notes (FBBSD $30,000 at par value. COMPANY NEWS Earnings Releases: Colina Holdings Bahamas (CHL released unaudited financial statements for the quarter ended September 30, 2010, reporting net income available to common shareholders of $2.6 million compared to $5.3 million in the same quarter in 2009. It was noted that both net premium revenues and net policyholder benefits were up quarter-over-quarter. Net premium revenues stood at $28.2 million, increasing by $1.48 million, while net benefits paid totalled $19.6 million, up by $4.1 mill ion. CHL reported net investment income of $8.2 million, an increase of $2.4 million in comparison to the prior quarter, while its expenses reflected reduced changes in provision for future policy benefits of $3.5 million. These climbed by $1.3 million. CHL reported earnings per share of $0.07 compared to $0.19 in the comparative quarter, a decrease of $0.12. At September 30, 2010, CHL reported total assets and liabilities of $520 million and $406 million, respectively, an increase of $21 million and $11 million from year-end December 31, 2009. Focol Holdings (FCL audited financial results for the year ended July 31, 2010. Net income available to common shareholders was $18.5 million, an increase of $3.4 million or 18 per cent compared to $15.1 million last year. Revenues stood at $267 million, down $6 million or 2 per cent, while cost of sales reflected a larger decline of $11.9 million or 8 per cent to total $216.4 million. Gross profit totalled $50.5 million, increasing by $5.9 million or 12 per cent during the period. It was noted that FCL's operating expenses for the period were $28.4 million, up $2.2 million or 8 p er cent in comparison to the prior year. Earnings per share for the year were $0.47, up $0.10 when compared to $0.37 in the comparative period last year. Total assets and liabilities at July 31, 2010, stood at $136.8 million and $23.7 million respectively, compared to $126.6 million and $33.9 million at July 31, 2009. C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS PAGE 2B, MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM Colonial Group International:Insurance,Health,Pensions,Life Colonial Group International is rated A-(Excellentby AM Best. Lifestyle ProtectionHealth,wealth and happiness cover.insurance,health,pensions,lifeIf you protect your lifestyle with a CGI company,you can pay less for motor and home insurance,and enjoy firstrate business cover too.From health insurance,rich in benefits and offering global coverage,to pensions and family protection,CGI companies offer flexible products to make the most of your budget.Insurance326-7100 for an agent Health326-8191 (Nassau351-3960 (Freeport) Pensions502-7526 Life 356-5433www.cgigroup.bm Colonial Pension Services (Bahamas Tel.502-7526 Atlantic Medical Insurance Tel.326-8191 Freeport Tel.351-3960 Security & General Insurance Tel.326-7100 RoyalFidelity Market Wrap EQUITY MARKET TRADING STATISTICS Week ending 03.12.10 BISX YTDPRICE SYMBOL CLOSING PRICEWKLY PRICEVOLUME CHANGE AML$ 1.01$-0-13.68% BBL$ 0.18$-0-71.43% BOB$ 4.90$-0-16.95% BPF$ 10.63$-0-1.02% BSL$ 5.01$-0-50.20% BWL$ 2.70$-0-14.29% CAB$ 10.46$-04.81% CBL$ 6.85$-55,000-2.14% CHL$ 2.40$-900-11.76% CIB$ 9.74$-0-2.50% CWCB $ 1.81$-0-35.79% DHS$ 1.60$-0-37.25% FAM$ 6.07$-0-6.47% FBB$ 2.17$-0-8.44% FCL$ 5.46$-1,00014.47% FCLB$ 1.00$-00.00% FIN$ 7.23$-0-22.09% ICD$ 5.59$-4000.00% JSJ$ 9.82$-0-0.30% PRE $ 10.00 $0 0.00% INTERNATIONAL MARKETS FOREX Rates Currency Weekly%Change CAD 0.99741.71 GBP 1.57831.19 EUR 1.34211.33 Commodities Weekly%Change Commodity Crude Oil 91.62 7.06 Gold1,403.503.58 International Stock Market Indexes Index Weekly%Change DJIA11,382.092.62 S&P 5001,224.712.97 NASDAQ 2,591.46 2.24 Nikkei10,178.301.38 B OND MARKET TRADING STATISTICS BISX SYMBOL DESCRIPTIONVOLUMEPARVALUE FBB13 FBB Series0 $1,000 C Notes Due 2013 FBB15 FBB Series 30 $1,000 D Notes Due 2015 FBB17FBB Series0$1,000 A Notes Due 2017 FBB22FBB Series0$1,000 B Notes Due 2022 Share your news The Tribune wants to hear fr om people who are making news in their neighbour hoods. Per haps you are raising funds for a good cause, campaigning for improvements in the area or have won an award. If so, call us on 322-1986 and share your story.
The Bahamian development company behind the $8 million Dunmore Court community of 28 luxury homes in southwestern New Providence has said the pro ject is on target, with Phase I slated for an early 2011 opening eight months after ground was broken. "We are very pleased with the progress of the develop ment," said Vhaul Thompson, its owner. "We have worked hard to stick to schedule and to budget, while maintaining our quality of construction every step of the way. We are so proud of this. In fact, we hope Dunmore Court will be used as a model of what an all-Bahamian owned, designed and built project can be. We want to be the standard bearers for high-end Bahamian-built residential communities and inspire others." When news of the Dunmore Court project first unfolded, it was considered an indicator of confidence in a recovering economy. "There has been tremen dous interest in Dunmore Court, which is a good economic indicator," said real tor Sidney Bethell, Mario Carey Realty. Interest "A number of factors contribute to the interest. The townhomes themselves are extremely attractive. Each home is three storeys, with an interesting lay-out and generous 2,200 square feet. Right pricing is always a predictor of success and at $499,000, Dunmore Court is priced right," said Mr Bethell. "Location is a major factor. Dunmore Court is minutes from the new Albany resort and residential community, and not far from Lyford Cay. With investors including Joe Lewis, Tiger Woods and Ernie Els, Albany promises to put southwestern New Providence on the map in a way that it never has been before." Phase I of Dunmore Court consists of the first of seven buildings, each with four residences. C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS THE TRIBUNE MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010, PAGE 3B TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM &RPIRUWDEOHRRPVDW&RPIRUWDEOHDWHV5RRPVIURPMXVWHULJKWSOXVJUDWXLW\5HVWDXUDXQWDQG%DURROHFUHDWLRQRRPHHWLQJRRP$OEDQV'ULYH By ALISON LOWE Business Reporter a email@example.com C omplaining that too much wastage of public resources take places as a consequence of how the Government contracts out public works, Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham pledged that reforms must be introduced to the process. The Prime Minister said it was very difficult for the Government to ensure projects do not end up costing it more than it had anticipated. Speaking at the Bahamas Society of Engineers Engineering, Design and Construction conference on Friday, Mr Ingraham said: We have got to discontinue the practice of saying we will automatically award a job to the lowest tender, and we have also got to put some conditions down on what qualifies you to tender on this job. Weve got to stop w asting p ublic r esources because theres a lot of wastage that goes on in the contracting by the Government of the Bahamas. A lot of wastage. Its very difficult for the Government to say this job is going to cost $100 and for it not to end up costing $150, and weve got to find a way by which we can do something about that. In an interview with Tribune Business after the conference, Minister of Works, Neko Grant, said it has been an assumption rather than something in law which has typically guided the Government towards selecting the lowest-cost contractor when awarding public contracts that have been put out to tender. H owever, echoing Mr I ngraham, he stated that gove rnment must be sensible in this regard, as this can sometimes get ourselves and the contractor in trouble. Asked about the Prime Ministers comments, Mr Grant said: Its not always awarded to the lowest bidder. Theres a benchmark and we allow a 15 per cent plus or minus, and so we look at the bid. If its too low we simply cannot award it because we wouldve calculated in house what it should cost. In awarding it to the lowest bidder we can sometimes get ourselves and the contractor in trouble. If its thought hes unable to do the job for the money bidded, then weve got to be sensible, look at what weve estimated the contract to cost and then award the contract accordingly. If its out of the plus or minus 15 per cent range then the flags go up. Acting chief mechanical a nd electrical engineer in the M inistry of Works, Bradley K ing, noted that at present the only requirements that exist for a contractor wishing to bid on a government project are that they must be up to date and in compliance with their National Insurance Board contributions, they must have a business license and show the ability to take out public liability insurance. This may make it harder for the Government to determine whether or not the contractor will be genuinely able to do what he has suggested he can do for the price he has put forward. The lowest bidder might not be the best bidder. You can have a lot of problems, expenses, delays...so it ends up costing more in the long run, said Mr King of some of the problems that can be encountered. PM pledges reform to lowest bidder S ays too much wastage of public resources in public works and contract t endering, and government must stop tendency to go with lowest offer HUBERT INGRAHAM $8m project on target for early 2011 opening 2011 OPENING: Dunmore Court entrance. LUXURIOUS: Main floor.
from downtown Nassaus revitalisation. D escribing the Bahamas Property Funds perform ance for the first nine months of 2010 as not great and not bad, Mr Anderson, w ho is also RoyalFidelity Merchant Bank & Trusts president, said the fund cont inued to be affected by having to carry Common Area Maintenance (CAM f or the 18,000 vacant square feet at the Bahamas Financial Centre. T his had resulted in the Bahamas Property Funds other expenses increasing to $ 768,983 for the nine months to September 30, 2010, an increase of 28.4 per cent compared to the $598,840 incurred the year b efore. The other drag on the companys performance is the cash flow neutral nature of its Providence House acquisition, the dealh aving been financed by a s ix-year, $3.5 million prefe rence share that has i ncreased the Bahamas P roperty Funds dividends y ear-over-year by more than $ 204,000 from $58,333 to $262,500. Pointing out that CAM carrying costs at the B ahamas Financial Centre had also risen as a result of h igher electricity prices, Mr Anderson said: We havent managed to rent any of the space in the last quarter, so its still more of the same. The CAM costs we have are slightly higher. Electricity, as an example, is a lot higher today than it was a few months back, so theres b een an increase in CAM costs. The RoyalFidelity chief said vacant space at the Bahamas Financial Centre had increased slightly by a few thousand square feet between year-end 2009 and now, with one or two of the smaller clients having left. The trick is to get the space at the Financial Cen-t re rented, and what weve s een over the last few months is an interest in that space. There are a few peo ple we hope to finalise things with in a month or so, he added. Were optimistic about g etting that space rented in the next few months. Thew hole aim for the Property F und in the next year, or as soon as we can, is to get that rented and turn it into the b ottom line. When you take 18,000 s quare feet at the Financial Centre, its where weve really got to be focused. Itss uch a big piece of space. The Financial Centre is 1 00,000 square feet, so 18,000 square feet may not sound too much, and its still8 2 per cent rented. Detailing the impact the v acant space was having on the Bahamas Property Funds profitability, MrA nderson said the increased Financial Centre CAM costsc ame straight off its bottom line. With CAM costs, inclusive of square footage, about $55 per square foot per a nnum, Mr Anderson said that multiplying this by the 1 8,000 square feet vacant gave a figure of $990,000 what the BISX-listed fundw as currently incurring in increased costs and lost profi t. The RoyalFidelity president added that theB ahamas Financial Centre tenant search was likely to b e aided by a general sense that the economic environment is picking up, whichm ight encourage companies that had deferred relocationp lans to move them back to a priority agenda. Of the funds other two properties, One Marina Drive on Paradise Island was 95 per cent rented, Mr Anderson said, another smaller tenant having d eparted, while the Bahamas Property Funds s hareholders should start to see some benefits from the P rovidence House purchase coming through from yearend 2011 onwards. T his was because the lease o n that property, which is o ccupied by the Pricewaterh ouseCoopers (PwC accounting firm, expires at year-end 2011 and is due to b e renegotiated with an i mproved monthly rental payment likely starting in mid-June. M r Anderson conceded, though, that it would be four-and-a-half years before we see the real benefits of that purchase, as that represents the period for which the $3.5 million preference share issue has to r un, although there would be some improvement next year as the lease gets renewed. The Bahamas Property Funds rental revenues are r unning 1.5 per cent ahead o f 2009 comparatives for the first nine months of 2010, s tanding at $3.068 million c ompared to $3.023 million t he year before, with total revenues up by a similar margin. This will have been aided by the 2-3 per cent per a nnum rental increases built into the contracts of most Bahamas Property Fund tenants. Although interest charges came down as the Bahamas Property Fund continued to pay down on its debt, the CAM costs and preference share dividends pushed operating expenses up by just over 25 per cent, from $1.324 million the year before to $1.66 million. As a result, funds from o perations dropped by 16.2 per cent to $1.447 million, compared to $1.726 millionf or the nine months to September 30, 2009. As a result, net income dropped by 16 per cent, from $1.6 million to $1.345 million. But despite the latest financials, Mr Anderson said the Bahamas Property Fund had great potential to make acquisitions as the commercial market recovered. This was due to the fact that debt accounted for just 25 per cent of its capital structure, the rest being equity, giving it a one:three debt/equity ratio. Theres nothing really out in the market, Mr Anderson conceded. Weve been told about a couple of properties that may come to market, but were not currently in negotiations with anyone. He added, though, that downtown may represent some opportunities for the Property Fund to diversify into ownership of propertiesw here there were long-term retail tenants, exploiting the i nterest of investors such as the Dart Group and the revitalisation project tom ake the switch from being purely a commercial office space owner. B elieving that with the assistance of Baha Mar, the B ahamas is going to come out of recession a little earlier than other countries,M r Anderson said that while a move into shopping cent res was also being eyed, the Bahamas Property Fund would continue to focus onl ong-term tenants, rather than residential properties w here leases tended to be shorter term. We are patient property o wners, and believe longterm that we will build a decent portfolio of properties, Mr Anderson said. Referring to the recentf ailed effort to purchase the UBS (Bahamas on East Bay Street, he added that the Bahamas Property Fund will justb ack away from properties where we feel the risk/reward is not adequate. Ten years ago we looked at having a $100 million property portfolio, and currently we have around $53-$ 54 million, so were looking at adding at least another $30-$40 million. I think a$ 100 million portfolio would b e a good portfolio to have, Mr Anderson said. The key to successful p roperty development, he explained, was to ensure any debt financing was paidd own quickly, thus keeping interest payments to service that debt below rental income. I think we will see an improved performance, Mr Anderson said of theB ahamas Property Funds 2 011 prospects. The economy is going to be improved, and we have tenants we are discussing opportunities with. Some of those we believe will come through, so next year will be a better year for us. He added that the Bahamas Property Fund had placed Caribbean real estate purchases on the back burner for the moment, having looked at the possibility a year ago, in favour of focusing on the Bahamas. But should such opportunities arise in the longer-term, Mr Anderson said they would be assessed. C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS PAGE 4B, MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM (03/2<0(17 23325781,7<6KLIWSHUDWRUVHHGHGIRUZHOO HVWDEOLVKHGVHFXULW\UP5HTXLUHPHQWV 7RDSSO\SOHDVHHPDLOUHVXPHWRKXPDQUHVRXUFHVKU#JPDLOFRP ,VODQG:HVW 5HDO(VWDWH&RPSDQ\/LPLWHGROXQWDU\/LTXLGDWLRQf$OOSHUVRQVKDYLQJFODLPVDJDLQVWWKHDERYH Q DPHG&RPSDQ\DUHUHTXLUHGRQRUEHIRUHGDWHG RI'HFHPEHUVHQGWKHLU QDPHVDGGUHVVHVDQGSDUWLFXODUVRIWKHLUGHEWV D QGFODLPVWR0U7KRPDV7UHYRU'HDQ3 )UHHSRUW*UDQG%DKDPD,VODQG7KH %DKDPDVWKH/LTXLGDWRURIWKH&RPSDQ\RULQG HIDXOWWKHUHRIWKH\PD\EHH[FOXGHGIURPWKH EHQHRUDQ\GLVWULEXWLRQPDGHEHIRUHGHEWVDUH SURYHG'DWHGWKHWKGD\RI'HFHPEHU 7KRPDVUHYRU'HDQ /LTXLGDWRU ACCOUNTING & SMALL BUSINESS CONSULTING SERVICES(over 25 years experience Accounting records in bad shape? Need financial statements for the bank? (2-4 weeks Need a business plan and financing proposal prepared? Need business licence prepared/certified? 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CHARTERED ACCOUNTANTS Fund targeting $1m bottom line swing F ROM page 1B Ten years ago we looked at having a $100 million property portfolio, and currently we have around $53-$54 mill ion, so were looking at adding at least another $30-$40 million. I think a $100 million portfolio would be a good portf olio to have. Michael Anderson
By DENISE MAYCOCK Tribune Freeport Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org FREEPORT Sir Jack Hayward, one of the principal owners of the Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA ments decision not to renew the work permit of former chairman Hannes Babak has left the organisation leaderless. Sir Jack also noted that some of the big projects thatMr Babak was working to bring to Freeport are now gathering dust. He said the Port Authority was doing its best to improve the economy of Freeport. We are working on things, he told reporters on Friday at a press conference announcing the Ports plans to start construction of a new $4 million bridge at the Grand Bahama Highway. We are a bit leaderless without Hannes Babak, who has been denied a work permit, of course, without any explanation. Sir Jack said Mr Babak had been working on bringing several major projects for Freeport, including an LNG plant, a second rock dredging company, a refinery, and a new cement plant. The projects are gathering dust. He flew to Texas several times for an LNG plant to provide cheap electricity to Grand Bahama, Abaco, and also for export to Florida. That was one project that was looking very promising, Sir Jack said. But the Government denied his work permit, no explanation to me or to us (the Port ily. I think one man, I dont think the Government, but we are missing, obviously, his input and we need that; we need someone. Mr Babak, a native of Austria, was appointed GBPA chairman on June 1, 2006. His work permit expired in December 2009, and was notr enewed by the Government. According to an article published in January in Tribune Business, Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham himself confirmed that he had personally informed Mr Babak during a meeting at which Sir Albert Miller was present that the Government would not renew his work permit, as it did not believe he was the right person to chair the GBPA. When asked whether there would be a replacement for Mr Babak, Sir Jack said there are no plans at the moment to replace him. He said the Port Authority currently holds only one work permit. He said the companys application for a second work permit for the position of special projects was alsod enied. We have one work permit in our organisation (Graham Torode, president of DEVCO), we have over 250 Bahamian employees andI think thats a hell of a good record, added Sir Jack. When we applied for another work permit for Chris Johnston it was denied. We wanted him for special projects to supervise the bridge (construction neer of 22 years with Hutchison Whampoa, and he worked seven days and had to leave. Sir Jack stressed that there is an urgent need for an alternate bridge, as the Casuarina Bridge is now old and the only causeway connecting Freeport and East Grand Bahama. When asked his opinion on the state of the Grand Bahama economy, Sir Jack said he hopes it is improving. He noted that one of the hindrances has been the high cost of power and frequent outages that have affected major businesses on the island. We are doing our very best. I dont know that the Government is doing their best, he commented. I like the building (the new government complex under construction), I think it is terrific. We gave them the site free of charge, but what they are doing to stimulate the economy, I dont know. We are doing our very best. C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS THE TRIBUNE MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010, PAGE 5B TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM Sir Jack hits out on Babak work permit
f acilities, with the Corporation paying these companies for their services whether it be measured gallons of water produced or gallons of sewerage treated. Meanwhile, the Corporation is further considering following in other utility companies footsteps and divesting itself of its engineering department, only to buy back their services on a contractua l basis. Mr Laville updated engineers of these developments at the Bahamas Society of Engineers first engineering and design conference on Friday at the Sheraton Nassau Beach Resort. He said such developments within the Water and Sewerage Corporation could enhance work opportunities for private engineers. The idea is that typically the private sector does things more efficiently, and until we reach a point where we can do things more efficiently itsb etter to have the private sector do those things that they a re experts in. They can do things less expensively and t he only thing we need is the water. If you can do it efficiently, and meet certain expectations then we can work with you, said Mr Laville. Speaking of the potential for the further involvement of renewable energy in the Corporations operations, Mr Laville said that whether or not retrofitting of its plants with sustainable power sources will go ahead depends in large part on the success ofa new partnership with the Bahamas Renewable Energy Corporation, which is installing a solar and wind power facility on to a new 15,000-gallons-a-day desalination plant being constructed to service Tarpum Bay and Rock Sound, Eleuthera. The plant, which is being developed by and is to be owned and operated by General Electric, is set to come on stream in around five months time. We hope that this will be a model for the future. If this is successful we can move to some other plants and start retrofitting them to use renewable energy. We havea 25-year contract with (RE Corporation Bahamas), and they are guaranteeing giving us a rate for power that is 25 per cent below what the BEC rate is, said Mr Laville. Mr Laville said the increased need to obtain water through desalination rather than shrinking groundwater resources has driven the increased private sector involvement in the Corporations operations. Storm surges from hurricanes, which introduced increased levels of salt into the groundwater, as well as encroachment into aquifers by developments throughout the Bahamas, are a major threat to already limited groundwater supplies. The Water and Sewerage Corporation is at present applying to the Government to have an area of land with significant water reserves preserved in Spring City, Abaco, as it is threatened by development in the area including from a nearby government subdivision. The Corporation already gets 70 per cent of the water it supplies in New Providence from reverse osmosis plants, with the other 30 per cent coming from limited well fields in New Providence and being barged from well fields i n Andros. It expects the a mount coming from reverse osmosis to rise to 90 per cent in New Providence in the next several years. Desalinated water is produced from around 20 plants throughout the Bahamas, and three main suppliers. Everyone seems to think we have quite a robust ground supply throughout country but thats not the case. There are only three islands with a very satisfactory supply Abaco, Grand Bahama and Andros, said Mr Laville. The Corporation is also considering entering into a build, own, operate contract with a private firm to handle some of its sewerage opera tions. The idea is that the private sector puts up all financing and operates and owns the plant and we pay them on a per thousand gallon basis, said Mr Laville. And it is aiming to pin down a contractor soon to begin addressing the critical and worsening problem of non-revenue water for the Corporation water lost through leakage, theft or oth er means. This currently amounts to around 52 per cent of all water the Water and Sewer age Corporation puts into the system in New Providence, and 50 per cent in the Family Islands, costing the Corporation between $13-$16 million here in Nassau and $6-7 million in the other islands annually. Through an $80 million contract it is intended that steps will be taken to reduce the amount of water lost per day from 5.5 million gallons to 2.5 million in New Provi d ence, with this being a chieved over five years and maintained for a further five under the terms of the contract. In 2005, we did a test performance-based contract. A contractor came in and guaranteed a reduction of $1 million gallons a day of non-revenue water. If they did not do that, they had to provide us with one million gallons of free reverse osmosis water. We are now looking to put that project on larger scale, said Mr Laville. This will be done over five years, and then in the final five years they will have to maintain those savings. That will cost in the region of $70-80 million, but we will have saved that same amount by not having to buy that water to sell to our customers. If such steps are not taken it is projected that non-revenue water will increase greatly. At present, the Corporation puts around 10.6 million gallons of water into the supply system daily, and 5.5 million never reach the customer. It is projected that by 2014, if nothing is done, the Corporation would have to put around 14.1 million gallons a day into the system to get the same amount of water to customers, while by 2020 this would increase to 17.1 million. The target under this contract is that by 2020, instead of non-revenue water of 60 per cent, youll have about 23 per cent. By international standards thats quite acceptable, said Mr Laville. C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS PAGE 6B, MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM rntr rtr #$ nr "rnr$,tn/ tb,tn "b,n trb,tnb,tn$ tnb,tn 2rtn0 br br b,tn $trb,tnb,tn brfnbrfnffnt6 "b,n tb [ ] #t$&t'(#t QUALIFICATIONSAssociate degree in Business or related studies 3 5 years experience in claim management/verification preferred Excellent communication and interpersonal skills Excellent computer skills (Spreadsheets/database management) Knowledge of CPT-4 coding, ICD-9 and HCPCS preferred Ability to consistently manage multiple priorities and adapt easily in a rapidly changing environment Strong organizational, problem solving and decision-making skills Good oral and written communication skillsPOSITION SUMMARYT he successful candidate will: Be responsible for managing and monitoring a portfolio of insurance claims f rom various insurance companies and other third party payers; Develop favorable working partnerships and relationships with insurance c ompany and other payers representatives to facilitate reimbursement for the f acility; Monitor admissions to the facility Follow-up on delinquent accounts as needed Communicate with internal and external customers on a regular basis; Interact daily with various insurance companies and other third party payers; Provide management with monthly status reports of outstanding receivable b alance; Continuously participate in performance improvements to enhance service to o ur customers throughout the facility. 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C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS THE TRIBUNE MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010, PAGE 7B to announce details of their $210 million acquisition of a majority 51 per cent BTC stake plus management control, confirming that the restructuring costs associated with thep lanned downsizing should not be massive. Given that BTC had some 1,228 persons on staff at yearend 2009, a 30 per cent restructuring would entail around 410 jobs going at the company, whose privatisation is scheduledt o be completed around February 15, 2011, midway through the first quarter. T he two unions representing BTC line staff and middle managers, the Bahamas Communications and Public Officers Union (BCPOUP ublic Managers Union (BCPMU tion to CWC (which operates as LIME in the Caribbean B TCs purchaser, suggested that the restructuring could save the privatised company $22 million per year. With a further $5 million gain coming from reengineering a ssociated with the downsizing, the unions estimated that the exercise could ultimately save BTC $27 million per annum money that would flow straight to the bottom line. BTCs salary and benefit costs in 2009 were $84.273 million, and 30 per cent of this is $25.28 million, so the CWCd ownsizing plan is likely to reduce staff costs by somewhere around this amount. Defraying T herefore, the $15 million net cash CWC will inherit will go a significant way to defraying any downsizing expense, possibly covering half of this and maybe even more if iti s all used for this purpose. While BTC had some $61.902 million in cash on its bala nce sheet at year-end 2009, Tribune Business has been told that the maximum $15 million net cash position on the balance sheet at the privatisation date will come after theG overnment has paid-off BTCs existing loan obligations. At year-end 2009, BTC had short-term and long-term l oan liabilities of $11.236 million and $35.564 million respec tively, amounting to $47 mil l ion almost exactly the difference between the year-end 2009 position and the $15 million net cash CWC will inherit. With that net cash figure, and t he Government agreeing to cover any pension fund deficit, many observers are arguing that the Ingraham administration will receive less than $210 mil-l ion net for the majority BTC stake, although is balanced by the Stamp Duty it will receive on the sale. A rate of 10 per cent is payable on BTCs real p roperty, and 4 per cent on the assets of the business being sold, although this could well be split between government andC WC. With the $210 million price being around 4x (four times BTCs operating income and net profit for 2009, many rival Bahamas-based telecoms operators have suggested thatCWC got a sweet deal, although this does not account for t he impact competition will have on the state-owned incum bents profits and revenues as a result of market liberalisation. Mr Rice said of CWCs plans: What we need to do is get into the business, get a handle on it, talk to the management and work with the unions. Adding that CWC had yet to discuss its restructuring plans with either BTC union, with previous talks on the subject having been held between the Government and it, and the Government and the unions, Mr Rice told the conference call: In terms of the restructuring, I think its too early to comment in detail. He added that prior to closing the purchase, CWC would spend its time developing a business plan for BTC, plus the details of how the restructuring was going to work, the cost and how the company would proceed forward. Tribune Business disclosed on Friday how Mr Rice pledged that CWC would engage as quickly as possible with the unions, and how he felt both sides can reach a mutually acceptable point. Uncer tainty He also added during the conference call that BTC staff had been forced to live with years of uncertainty due to the protracted 12-year privatisation process, and that CWC would attempt to explain to the unions how it planned to create success and take the firm forward. I anticipate them being good discussions and positive, Mr Rice said of the impending union talks, and having a good partnership with the unions going forward and making the company as successful as it could be. However, Mr Rice may not have endeared himself to the Bahamian media via the conference call, as he effectively appeared to accuse the press of stoking the unions antiCWC position. Mr Pennington, though, pledged that CWC (LIME grow the business and improve the product offering, which is quite limited at the moment. Pledging that service levels and product offerings would improve to world class levels, he added: Theres very strong opportunities to get margins up to more palatable levels. Mr Rice said BTC ticks all the boxes for us in terms of its fit with LIMEs existing regional operations, Mr Pennington adding that the company was an ideal fit, withCWC seeing significant scope for synergies in areas such as IT solutions and operational support. Acknowledging that the Bahamian government had been very slow to do this in terms of privatising BTC, and had had quite an extensive courtship with a variety of people, Mr Rice said: Weve had some very good conversa tions with them, and see a really good opportunity to deliver value for them in terms of world class telecommunications services. On Friday, Tribune Business reported CWC executives as saying that per capita incomes in Jamaica and Barbados were some 40 per cent and 75 per cent lower, respectively, than the Bahamas. That is not quite correct, as what should have been reported was that they were 60 per cent and 25 per cent lower than this nations, respectively. BTCS $15M NET CASH SET TO COVER RESTRUCTURE COSTS F ROM page 1B What we need to do is get into the business, get a handle on it, talk to the management and work with the unions. Tony Rice
but denied claims by Tribune sources that an Immigration Department raid had removed several contractorsof varying nationalities including Americans and Filipinos for not being in possession of valid work permits. Jack Thompson, director of immigration, could not be reached for comment, and Mr Schaefer denied that any work permit and Immigration law violations had taken place. He acknowledged that while Immigration had visited the Prince Charles site during the middle of last week, and taken away several Haitian and Jamaican nationals who were working, all had later been released after they were subsequently found to be in possession of valid papers. Meanwhile, Mr Schaefer told Tribune Business that rapid progress was being made in getting the Prince Charles store ready to receive its first customers, with the property now being sealed from the elements and paving of the parking lot and surrounding space having begun. Were actually starting to stock the shelves with groceries, he added, saying that the initial inventory would cost a couple million dollars. Were going to open in a way, shape or form, Mr Schaefer said. Its going to be special, more so on some levels than the first store. In a four-mile radius of here, its the most densely-populated area on the island. Thats the beauty of it. Telling Tribune Business that Robin Hood will likely have invested $7 million in getting the Prince Charles store ready for opening, he added that the retailer was still on target to break ground on the planned 44,000 square foot, two-storey retail complex, which will be situated in front of the store, in January. Asked about tenants, Mr Schaefer replied: Nothing yet, but assume within the next two weeks we will have the whole place rented. Talks, he added, were still ongoing about branding the proposed gym, health and fitness centre under the Magic Johnson name. Asked about how the Tonique Williams-Darling Highway store was performing, Mr Schaefer said it was running similar to last years numbers right now. As for the upcoming Christmas season, he added: Were expecting to do at least as well as last year. It would be nice to be a few percentage points up, but if were 3, 4, 5 percentage points up well be doing really well, because the economy is struggling even worse this year. Mr Schaefer said there seemed to be less money in the Bahamian economy in 2010 than 2009, and the Baha Mar project aside, there was a perception that the general environment was impacting everyone in a harder way than it did at this same time last year. Asked how Robin Hood expected to perform in 2011, its president told Tribune Business: I think its going to be a turnaround for everybody. I think were all going to experience it. It will start slowly and build up as the year goes on. The world economy is turning, and Baha Mar is going to infuse the whole Bahamian environment and economy with a morale booster. It is probably 60-70 per cent of reality that is perception, and if people perceive that things are getting better, they will become better. Its a self-fulfilling prophecy. Mr Schaefer added that Robin Hood would aggres sively pursue its Family Island frsanchise plans in the New Year, adding: Weve already spoken to a few people, and got some very positive responses. There are always opportunities when things are difficult for everybody; you just have to find them and exploit them to your advantage. C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS PAGE 8B, MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM 52wk-Hi52wk-LowSecurit y Previous CloseToday's CloseChangeDaily Vol.EPS $Div $P/EYield 1 .261.00AML Foods Limited1.011.010.000.1500.0406.73.96% 10.759.67Bahamas Property Fund10.6310.630.000.0130.200817.71.88% 6 .184.50Bank of Bahamas4.904.900.000.5980.2608.25.31% 0.580.18Benchmark0.180.180.00-0.8770.000N/M0.00% 3.492.70Bahamas Waste2.702.700.000.1680.09016.13.33% 2.152.14Fidelity Bank2.172.170.000.0160.040135.61.84% 12.509.62Cable Bahamas10.4610.460.001.0500.31010.02.96% 2 .842.36Colina Holdings2.402.400.000.7810.0403.11.67% 7 .005.40Commonwealth Bank (S1)6.856.850.000.4220.26016.23.80% 3.651.63Consolidated Water BDRs1.741.72-0.020.1110.04515.52.62% 2.551.60Doctor's Hospital1.601.600.000.1990.1108.06.88%6 .995.94Famguard6.076.070.00-0.0030.240N/M3.95% 10.207.23Finco7.237.230.000.2870.52025.27.19% 1 1.408.77FirstCaribbean Bank9.399.390.000.6450.35014.63.73% 5.513.75Focol (S)5.465.460.000.3660.21014.93.85% 1.001.00Focol Class B Preference1.001.000.000.0000.000N/M0.00% 5.595.00ICD Utilities5.595.590.000.0120.240465.84.29% 10.509.82J. S. Johnson9.829.820.000.9710.64010.16.52%1 0.0010.00Premier Real Estate10.0010.000.000.9910.80010.18.00% 52wk-Hi52wk-LowSecuritySymbolLast SaleChangeDaily Vol. 9 9.4699.46Bahamas Note 6.95 (2029BAH2999.460.00 100.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 17 (Series A) +FBB17100.000.00 1 00.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 22 (Series B) +FBB22100.000.00 100.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 13 (Series C) +FBB13100.000.00 100.00100.00Fidelity Bank Note 15 (Series D) +FBB15100.000.00 52wk Hi 52wk Low Symbol Bid$ Ask$ LastPrice DailyVol EPS$ Div$ P/E Yield BISX LISTED & TRADED SECURITIES AS OF:7% I nterest 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%20 November 2029THURSDAY, 2 DECEMBER 2010BISX ALL SHARE INDEX: CLOSE 1,482.65 | CHG -0.02 | %CHG 0.00 | YTD -82.73 | YTD % -5.28BISX LISTED DEBT SECURITIES (Bonds trade on a Percentage Pricing basis)M aturity 19 October 2017FINDEX: CLOSE 000.00 | YTD 00.00% | 2009 -12.31%3 0 May 2013 52wk Hi 52wk Low Symbol Bid $ Ask $ Last Price Daily Vol EPS $ Div $ P/E Yield 10.065.01Bahamas Supermarkets5.016.0114.00-2.9450.000N/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 Fund1.51225.11%6.79%1.490421 2.92652.8300CFAL MSI Preferred Fund2.91871.10%3.13%2.919946 1.56681.4954CFAL Money Market Fund1.56834.06%4.67%1.548897 3.20252.8522Royal Fidelity Bahamas G & I Fund2.8624-8.16%-7.49% 13.638813.0484Royal Fidelity Prime Income Fund13.56421.47%2.95% 114.3684101.6693CFAL Global Bond Fund114.36849.98%12.49%109.392860 106.552899.4177CFAL Global Equity Fund106.55284.75%7.18%100.779540 1.13671.0000FG Financial Preferred Income Fund1.13674.30%5.21% 1.09741.0000FG Financial Growth Fund1.09742.75%6.87% 1.13631.0000FG Financial Diversified Fund1.13634.18%5.78% 9.74859.1005Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 19.74584.35%5.22% 11.236110.0000Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 210.6000-1.59%4.26% 10.00009.1708Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 39.5037-4.96%-4.96% 8.16434.8105Royal Fidelity Int'l Fund Equities Sub Fund8.16435.79%9.42% 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 7/11/200731-Oct-10BISX Listed Mutual FundsNAV Date 31-Oct-10 31-Oct-10 30-Sep-10CFAL Securities Ltd. (Over-The-Counter Securities)TO TRADE CALL: CFAL 242-502-7010 | ROYALFIDELITY 242-356-7764 | FG CAPITAL MARKETS 242-396-4000 | COLONIAL 242-502-752531-Oct-10 30-Sep-10 30-Sep-10 26-Nov-10 31-Aug-10MARKET TERMS31-Oct-10 NAV 6MTH 1.467397 2.911577 1.532712 107.570619 105.776543 30-Jun-10 31-Oct-10 31-Oct-10 31-Oct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t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t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e got no notice of any federal violation from any federal agency, and therefore there was no violation. Had there been a violation Bahamasair wouldve been fined. In court documents obtained by Tribune Business, it was recorded that legal action pursued by 23-year Bahamasaire mployee, Deborah Pinder, in the south Florida district c ourt was dismissed on June 22, 2010, six days before it was due to go to trial. This dismissal of the case came after Mrs Pinder filed a notice of settlement with Bahamasair. Mrs Pinder had sued the company in 2008, alleging that it violated the Florida Whistleblower Act when it fired her over her decision to copy a letter she had written, highlighting an alleged violation by a Bahamasair manager of US federal regulations regarding passenger check-in, to the Transport Security Administration (TSA Her court action charged that she engaged in protected activity when she objected in writing to Bahamasairs violation of federal law, and was otherwise performing satisfactorily in her position. In her letter to the Miami station manager for Bahamasair, Glenda Pletscher, advising of the alleged contravention of regulations governing the Airline Passenger InformationS ystem (APIS d escribed how the manager had checked in a passenger for a flight under an entirely different and incorrect name and passport number. Discrepancy The discrepancy on the passenger manifest was only corrected by a different employee after the flight had departed, f ollowing discovery of what had taken place by a gate agent. Having been suspended without pay a year earlier for inadvertently entering incorrect information into the APIS ( Airline Passenger Information System), mixing up the name of one passenger with another who had a very similar name, Mrs Pinder said in her letter that all Bahamasair e mployees deserve to see the procedures and policies of this airline applied uniformly. She suggested that she was well aware of the negative i mpact such breaches of security can have on the welfare of Bahamasair, and added that while her mistake was not intentional, other employees may be intentionally engag i ng in actions which undermine Bahamasairs compliance with TSA guidelines. Under rules and regulations stemming from post 9/11 a nti-terrorism legislation in the US, it was a requirement that a proper passenger manifest be completed and sent elec tronically to the federal tracking agency prior to securing any airplane for departure. I n the letter Mrs Pinder received a month later, advising her of her termination, director of human resources for Bahamasair, Cornel Mortimer, stated: We have decided further and more severe disciplinary action is warranted based on your sending a copy of your letter (alleging viola tions of US federal regulations by Bahamasair) to the TSA. We believe your motive in doing so was malicious and that your intent was to harm the company. The company does not want employees who desire to cause it harm. M r Mortimer claimed in the termination letter he sent to Mrs Pinder that it was in further reference to the incident that occurred on October 2, 2007 the incident in whichM rs Pinder entered incorrect information into the APIS s ystem, resulting in her previous suspension. In her subsequent lawsuit, Mrs Pinder alleged she suffered financial and psychological damage as a result of being terminated from Bahamasair, being unable to find other unem ployment after finding that she had been essentially black listed from the industry because of Bahamasairs actions. BAHAMASAIR DENIES WHISTLEBLOW FIRING F ROM page 1B New Robin Hood store % ready F ROM page 1B
PAUL WISEMAN, A P Economics Writer W ASHINGTON The economy is starting to fire on almost every cylinder t hese days but the one that matters most: Job creation. Factories are busier. Incomes are rising. Autos are selling. T he holiday shopping season is s haping up as the best in four years. Stock prices are surging. And many analysts are raising their forecasts for the econo my's growth. Goldman Sachs, for instance, just revised its gloomy prediction of a 2 percent increase in gross domestic p roduct in 2011 to 2.7 percent a nd forecast 3.6 percent growth for 2012. "The upward momen-tum has more traction this time," says James O'Sullivan, c hief economist at MF Global. If only every major pillar of the economy were faring so well. Despite weeks of brighter e conomic news, employers still aren't hiring freely. The econom y added a net total of just 39,000 jobs in November, the government said Friday. That's far too few even to s tabilize the unemployment rate, which rose from 9.6 per-c ent in October to 9.8 percent last month. Unemployment is w idely expected to stay above 9 percent through next year, in part because of the stilldepressed real estate industry. Job creation ultimately drives the economy, and it remains the most significant weak link. The meager job gains for November confounded econom ists. They'd expected net job growth to reach 145,000 and for the unemployment rate to stay at 9.6 percent. Some economists dismissed the November data as a technical fluke, a result of the government's difficulty in adjusting the figures for seasonal fact ors. They think the number will be revised up later. Others saw the jobs report as a reminder that the economy is still struggling to emerge from an epic financial crisis that choked off credit, stifled spending and escalated a "normal" recession into the worst in 70 y ears. The depth of the financial crisis means the recovery will proceed more slowly than many had hoped or expected, they say. The fits and starts are not surprising," says Jack Kleinhenz, chief economist at the National Retail Federation. "We've had a unique recessiona nd therefore a unique recove ry." In the view of most econom ists, the direction of the overall economy remains positive even if its pace feels agonizingly slow. The latest unemployment report was a setback, but likely a temporary one, theys ay. Which are you going to believe," O'Sullivan asks, "one month of payrolls or all the other data?" Among encouraging signs: _ Consumers, whose spending fuels about 70 percent of the economy, are regaining confidence. The Conference Board's index of consumer confidence rose in November to the highest level since June as consumers expressed more optimism about business cond itions and jobs. Consumers are suffering "austerity fatigue," says Scott Minerd of Guggenheim Partners. They're ready to replace old clothes, old appliances, old cars. Family finances have improved. Personal income surged 0.5 percent in October. T hat put cash in shoppers' wallets for the holiday shopping season. Households cut their debts to 122 percent of annual disposable income in the AprilJune quarter, according to Haver Analytics. That was the lowest debt level since the end of 2004. _The holiday shopping seas on got off to a buoyant start. The National Retail Federation e xpects holiday retail sales to rise 2.3 percent this year, the b est performance since 2006. One reason: Stock prices have surged. A 14 percent rally in the Dow Jones industrial aver-a ge since late August has made h ouseholds feel wealthier, Kleinhenz says. C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS THE TRIBUNE MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010, PAGE 9B TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM 'U/LX=HOLQ/HRf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ssociated Press ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. Asked about his plans to save Resorts Atlantic City, the f irst casino in the United States to open outside Nevada, newo wner Dennis Gomes briefly touches on spruced up hotel r ooms, guest suites and a snazz ier casino floor. But what the place really needs, he says, is a w hole lotta love, with some positive spiritual energy thrown i n. Despite his buttoned-down appearance, Gomes is not your t ypical casino executive. "There's something in the martial arts called 'chi,' the life energy that guides you ... I think I give energy," said Gomes, a veteran casino executive who got approval on Wednesday to buy the strug gling casino with partner Morris Bailey for the fire-sale price of $31.5 million from lenders who had taken it over a year ago. "I think love is the most pow erful force in the universe. If you do everything from love, you can tap into that energy," he told the Casino Control Commission, drawing big laughs by adding, "those Wall Street guys hate that." (AP Photo/Mel Evans,file AILING: Resorts Hotel and Casi no, Atlantic Citys first casino, which opened Memorial Day 1978, is seen in this Nov. 14, 2007 photograph. Economy is making steady gains despite weak hiring NEW RESORTS OWNER: ALL AILING CASINO NEEDS IS LOVE months and years to say yes or no to. Mario Bastian, the BSE secretary, put it to M r Ingraham during a question and answer session engineers were allowed with the Prime Minister, that given ongoing problems with the length of time it takes government building inspectors to c ertify construction work, private engineers could in some way or form could assist the Ministry in carrying out that task. There are engineers who are qualified and equipped to inspect constructions throughoutt he country, and think it would be a good thing for us to assist the Ministry, so people can get occupancy as quickly as possible, said Mr Bastian. M r Ingraham responded that this was music to (his But you must bear in mind that the Ministry of Works and government departments are bureaucracies. They dont want to give up anyp ower like to hog it all, even though they can be overwhelmed, the Prime Minister said. But no, be assured they will be mandated to do it and it can be done easily. We have 130 certified engineers and architects, and theres no possibility of the Government of the Bahamas hiring sufficient people to do these inspections. We can agree reasonable fees and expedite t hese things. Thats no problem whatsoever. Well act on that, said Mr Ingraham. Responding to a query from engineer Marcus L aing about the building permit process, which has been criticised of late for how long it cant ake especially in comparison to other jurisdic t ions globally Mr Ingraham suggested that under t he new Planning and Subdivision Act, there are p rovisions for the expedited approval of building plans put forward by licensed professional engin eers and architects, and which are under a certain size. Mr Laing said: One of the things thats really been a hindrance is the long time for approvals on the engineering or architectural side. Around the world they have an expedited process where applications are made by licensed professionals. A study was put forward to the Ministry which spells out that where licensed architects and engineers put forward plans for a building under a certain size, the jurisdiction just allows it to be passed, with all liability falling on that professional. It allows more revenue, more jobs to flowi nto the community. M r Ingraham said: We are as frustrated as y ou are in terms of how long it takes to have v arious simple things determined in the Bahamas. O ne of the big irritants is permission to build a s imple house or office, or to determine if this or that area is commercial etc. We are well underway in terms of being able to structure the Government in that fashion, and the point you make will be dealt with shortly. Speaking of the potential impact of allowing for private engineers rather than just government-employed building inspectors doing building inspections, BSE presidentRobert Reiss, told Tribune Business that this could be a useful revenue stream for such professionals at a time when many are unemployed and a lot are underemployed. Where it has much much more significant impact is to actually expedite developments in o ur country. To become more attractive to developers and F DI, getting our ranking up higher worldwide in terms of the development process and having Bahamians building their own home being able to do it smoothly and effectively, and eliminate some of that red tape and time constraints, Mr R eiss said. That specific action that we very much hope is implemented really could just expedite the whole building process in the country, and those benefits could be really just phenomenal. PM backs building inspection outsource F ROM page 1B
C M Y K C M Y K INSIGHT T HE TRIBUNE MONDAY, DECEMBER 6, 2010, PAGE 11B TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM GN-1141MINISRY OF NATIONAL SECURITY POLICE DEPARTMENT BAGHDAD INTELLIGENCEofficials say foreign fighters have been slipping back into Iraq in larger numbers recently and may have beenb ehind some of the most devastating attacks t his year, reviving a threat the U.S. military believed had been almost entirely eradicat ed, according to Associated Press. It is impossible to verify the actual numbers of foreign insurgents entering the coun try. But one Middle Eastern intelligence o fficial estimated recently that 250 came in October alone. U.S. officials say the figure is far lower, but have acknowledged an increase since August. A t the same time, Iraqi officials say there has been a surge in financial aid to alQaida's front group in Iraq as the U.S. mil i tary prepares to leave by the end of 2011. They said it reflects fears by Arab states over the growing influence of Iran's Shiite-l ed government over Iraq and its Shiited ominated government. On Sunday, security official Maj. Gen. Qassim al-Moussawi said Iraqi forces are searching for six foreign fighters who are among Iraq's most wanted terrorists. The six are suspected of involvement in the Oct. 31 siege of a Christian church that l eft 68 people dead and drew international outrage, al-Moussawi said. They are also suspected in two summertime attacks on anI raqi army headquarters in central Baghdad that killed a total of 73 people. "All who committed these attacks are (non-Iraqi the failure of al-Qaida leaders to recruit Iraqis to carry out suicide attacks." Al-Moussawi said five of the six suspects are hiding in two Sunni Muslim-dominated provinces bordering Syria, while one has fled to Syria. U.S. officials are playing down the threat. Army Col. Barry Johnson, a spokesman for U.S. forces in Iraq, said the military noticed a slight increase in foreign fighters starting in August, but would not say how many. He said the number remains far low er than when insurgents were rushing in from Arab states between 2005 and 2007. "There were some indications of a flow of foreign fighters in," Johnson said. "And that is often associated with suicide attacks, sowe were anticipating something happening." Last year, U.S. counterterrorism officials said the number of foreigners heading toIraq had trickled from hundreds to "tens" in what they described as a severely weakened al-Qaida in Iraq. But a Mideast counterterrorism official said an estimated 250 foreign fighters entered Iraq in October alone. He said they came through the Syrian city of Homs, a hub for Syrian Muslim fundamentalists that is run mostly by Tunisians and Algerians. Other fighters have come from Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Libya and Yemen. Additionally, the official said tens of millions of foreign dollars annually are fundingthe Iraqi insurgency, which has received about $5 billion in aid since 2007. The money comes from al-Qaida leaders, Muslims who want the U.S. to leave, and so-called 'Arab nationalists' who are eager for Sunni Muslims to regain power in Shiite-domi nated Iraq. The official spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to brief the media. Even at the height of the war, foreign fighters were considered a small percentage of the total insurgents in Iraq. But their presence encouraged donations from over seas, and they made up some of the most hardcore jihadists who were willing to carry out suicide bombings. Officials see the fingerprints of foreign fighters in a spate of recent attacks: Four of the church bombers who were from Libya and Syria and carried fake ID cards that identified them as mutes to avoid talking in foreign accents to checkpoint guards, Iraqi Deputy Interior Minister Ahmed Abu Raghef told The Associated Press. He said $70,000 cash was seized from a western Baghdad home where their cell's leaders were operating. A Tunisian who was also pretending to be mute was arrested on terror charges in August in eastern Diyala province, accord ing to an Iraqi security official who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to talk to the media. A Moroccan fighter was captured and two non-Iraqi insurgents were killed in a raid last Thursday in the northern city of Mosul, said Defense Ministry spokesman Maj. Gen. Mohammed al-Askari. Four Jordanian fighters were killed by U.S. troops in Iraq, according to a Novem ber claim by the Islamic State of Iraq, a front group for al-Qaida. A Nov. 2 string of rapid-fire blasts in Shiite neighborhoods across Baghdad killed 91. Iraqi counterterrorism commander Maj. Gen. Fadhel al-Barwari said it must have been carried out with foreign financing to buy the explosives needed "to launch an attack with a big number of casualties." U.S. officials and experts voiced doubt that the foreign aid is as high as Iraqi and Mideast authorities believe. A senior U.S. military official who spoke on condition of anonymity to talk candidly about the sensitive issue estimated about 10 foreign fighters enter Iraq each month. Michael Knights, a Lafter Fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy predicted there are only "small cells of expe rienced foreign fighters in ISI." But an analysis by private global intelligence firm Stratfor concluded that foreign help in the church siege signals al-Qaida "may have found a new source for militants, and they may have more resources to carry out fresh attacks." More foreign fighters seen slipping back into Iraq IRAQI MILITARY spokesman Maj. Gen. Qas sim al-Moussawi speaks to the media during a press conference in Baghdad, Iraq, Sunday, Dec. 5, 2010. Al-Moussawi says security forces are on the lookout for six foreign fight ers who helped launch horrific attacks this year that killed more than 140 people. (AP technical and vocational training less expensive f or young men of modest m eans. The friend pointed out that helping young men to earn and contribute to ah ousehold can be a huge h elp to them and their often y oung and struggling mothers as well. She said: "Im a young mother; my daughter is 16. I grew up in Montell Heightsw here there was shooting a nd violence every day. I try and get out of that but if someone cant help me get a house or move out of this area then my child is gonna grow up in that same system,the same thing. My time was g ood, but her time will be worse. "All it is just the same thing, just a different day, different year, but it trickles down. My mummy had two c hildren for two different men. It will trickle down I e nd up with two, my child w ill end up with two. My mummy had a baby when s he was 18; I had mine when I was 16. "Good thing I break the cycle and my daughter didnt h ave hers when she was 16, b ut I feel as though if she was still in Montell Heights w here I was growing up she m ight have. So I break the c ycle by trying to say, 'Well you try to go to college, mummy couldnt go. Mummy didnt graduate from high school, but I have a good job'." B ut these women are not f ooled by all those who cry poor mouth. Ms Smith said that simply having qualifications is not enough on its own, "because it's a choice to i mprove your life it's on y ou." Her friend noted that many people in Bain Town claim they need help, but "could get a hair-do every day and dont go to work. "So it depends on who w ants to be helped people will tell you Oh I want to be helped', but they dont want to do the work. Youc an open up the door for me, but I have to walk through that door. Some people want everything handed to them, but thats not what were saying. If Im willing to work for w hat I want and my child is younger, help me so that I can be able to help they oung one growing up. "If you help me, I might b e able to take in another c hild whos not doing so good my sisters child, whose mother may be drinking or doing drugs she sees man beating up her mummy every day, shes going to say, Well man take care of my m ummy, man can take care of me'. "She could live with me to have a better life because what she sees her mother doing, she will do the same." H owever, they know it is u nrealistic to expect that everyone will react with such generosity, so they feel that whenever possible, it would be best to remove children from the suffocating atmosphere of these neighbourh oods altogether. The aunt suggested a kind of national recreation centre, "that way, you haves omeplace for kids to go. Right now there is no place for our kids to go, nowhere. The friend said: Or they could do a daycare for when parents go to work they d ont have no one to watch t heir children. Instead of leaving their child home with this one and that onew ho drinks rum or dont stay home or whatever, have s omewhere, a nursery where p eople could come and drop their children off during working hours and then pay (thats a job too; parents dont have a problem paying because you have to go t o work to make money). A l ot of people dont go to work because they dont have anyone to watch their children. The aunt added: Not only that if you go to work a nd something happens to y our children, the first thing people say is If that woman used to stay home and keep them children, this wouldnt have happened, or the child would have grown up different'. But parents have to w ork. For these women, crime, its causes and possible solutions are clearly complexi ssues requiring far reaching action. Whether or not the majority of Bahamians living in Over the Hill communities share these sentiments is unfortunately very d ifficult to judge; the opini on of the common man or woman features rarely in the Great Debate on Crimew hich the "experts" seem to be perpetually engaged in. In addition to the official police line, substantial attention is given to the insistenceo f the religious bunch that c rime is a righteous plague v isited upon us as a penalty for turning from God a view which conveniently ignores the comparative peace and safety enjoyed byn umerous societies much l ess saturated with "religion" t han ours. Then there are the fearful wealthy, who despite the fact that the vast majority of victims are someone else seem to suspectc rime is a specific attack on t heir way of life, perpetrated by mindless barbarians bent on destroying them exclusively. Meanwhile, "Grass roots" views on crime are usuallya ired only at moments of h eightened tension or emotion immediately following a murder or other violent incident for example resulting in understandably extreme reactions being taken for common opinion. As a result, working peop le are seen to be either part of the "pro-hanging march" torch-and-pitchfork crew,e ager to sacrifice any and all s uspects to the gods of vengeance; or the "Thug Life" crime-as-righteousrebellion crew, who see the police as an enemy guilty of harassment and provocation. B ut Ms Smith and Co. are right: it is not just a matter of turning to God, catching and keeping a handful ofc riminals, of putting up highe r fences around your house. T o deal with crime, you have to face the fact that it has become deeply entrenched in this society, that the cycles of abuse andn eglect of which these w omen spoke will not be b roken easily. The solutions have to be practical, realistic but crucially, must involve personal responsibility as well as ah elping hand. T he simple decision to see things clearly, no matter how bad they are, can itself lead to healthier behaviour and begin to restore our sense of community. M s Smith said: We have t o live as one I always told my co-workers that, because you don't know who's next. On the job I try to talk and laugh and joke, because you don't know who is next. I didn't know I was next. Ms Smith is, however, u nder no illusions that good sense will prevail anytime soon. Referring to her son'sd eath, she said, "It ain't the f irst one, and sad to say, it ain't gon' be the last. What do you think? email: p email@example.com F ROM page 12B Uncommon sense