The Tribune.
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00084249/01887
 Material Information
Title: The Tribune.
Uniform Title: Tribune. (Nassau, Bahamas).
Alternate Title: Nassau tribune
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 58 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Tribune
Creation Date: January 15, 2010
Genre: newspaper   ( sobekcm )
Spatial Coverage: Bahamas
General Note: Description based on: Vol. 79, no. 210 (Aug. 3, 1983); title from caption.
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Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 09994850
oclc - 9994850
System ID: UF00084249:01887


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B y NOELLE NICOLLS Tribune Staff Reporter nnicolls@tribunemedia.net TWO Bahamian aviation officials returned from Haiti yesterday,s till in shock over their experience surviving the massive earthquake that devastated Haitis capi t al on Tuesday. Reports from the international media are extremely accurate, but they are showing you the main streets, said Pat Rolle, Director ofC ivil Aviation. What they are not showing you are the side streets where everyone used to live. Things I thought were important to me are no longeri mportant. It will have t he effect to leave a last i ng impression on me. I would not like to experience it again. Mr Rolle and Hubert Adderley, Flight Standard Inspector, returned with tales that still have 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 Govt not stalling over by-election C M Y K C M Y K V olume: 106 No.44FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010 PRICE 75 (Abaco and Grand Bahama $1.25 WEATHER CLOUDYWITH ASHOWER HIGH 74F LOW 70F B U S I N E S S C O M I N G S O O N SEEBUSINESSFRONT S P O R T S Solid as a rock SEEPAGENINE Knights beat the Stingrays By NOELLE NICOLLS Tribune Staff Reporter nnicolls@tribunemedia.net PRIME Minister Hubert Ingraham denied allegations that the government was drag ging its feet on calling a by-election for the Elizabeth con stituency. Mr Ingraham addressed the political rumours at a Free National Movement press conference called to announce the confirmation and ratification by the FNM Central Council of Dr Duane Sands as the FNMs candidate in the by-election. The reality is, the government decides when by-elections are held, not oppositions. The government is acting consis tently with when by-elections have been called in the country from time immemorial. Noth ing new, nothing changed, said Mr Ingraham. He was responding to statements issued by the Opposition Progressive Liberal Party (PLP suspicious that the Governor General was yet to receive a letter advising him of the vacant seat in the House of Assembly. Member of Parliament for Elizabeth Malcolm Adderley resigned his seat eight days ago, PM addresses rumours, confirms candidate The Tribune ANY TIME...ANY PLACE, WERE #1 BAHAMASEDITION TINGS TOUGH McDOUBLE FOR $3.79 www.tribune242.com BAHAMASBIGGEST CARSFORSALE, HELPWANTED ANDREALESTATE I N S I D E Bahamian officials tell of horr or in Haiti DIRECTOROF CIVIL AVIATION P at Rolle embraces his daugh ter after he returned to the Bahamas from Haiti. Mr Rolles aid his experience of the earthquake there will have a lasting impression on him. SEESTORYABOVE T i m C l a r k e / T r i b u n e s t a f f SOGLADTOBEHOME SEE page two By NATARIO McKENZIE Tribune Staff Reporter nmckenzie@tribunemedia.net A FRIEND of Brenton Smith who was with him the night he was fatally shot, recalled two suspicious-looking boys heading from a short cut at the rear of the City Market food store on Village Road. It was there that Brenton, 18, met his death on the night of July 9, 2009, Leshad Thompson testified at the coroners inquest yesterday. The 18-year-old, who said he had been friends with Brenton for about a year, recalled that Brenton had come to his home in Dan Nottage Estates around 7.30 that night. According to Thompson, he and Brenton later walked to a mutual friends house not Friend of Brenton Smith saw suspicious looking boys on night of fatal shooting SEE page 11 By ALISON LOWE Tribune Staff Reporter alowe@tribunemedia.net BAHAMAS Union of Teachers President Belinda Wilson yesterday declined to confirm or deny whether she was the author of a petition circulated among union members calling for them to vote for the resignation of eight of the organizations executive team. According to BUT Secretary General Stephen McPhee, who was one of those tar geted by the petition, the officers listed were all those who had supported the recent move to T eachers union president tight-lipped on petition SEE page 11 By NATARIO McKENZIE Tribune Staff Reporters nmckenzie@tribunemedia.net MEMBERS of the Bahamas Hotel Catering and Allied Workers Union (BHCAWU polls soon as a decision by the Court of Appeal yesterday overturned the rulings of two separate judges in the protracted union dispute. The decision means that the BHCAWU, Ruling sends hotel union back to polls SEE page 12 By MEGAN REYNOLDS Tribune Staff Reporter mreynolds@tribunemedia.net A YOUNG man was shot dead when he confronted armed robbers early yesterday morning, sparking a warning from police that the public should not challenge criminals alone. Man shot dead after confronting robbers SEE page 12 B r o k e r s e l e c t s B a h a m a s f o r c o n s o l i d a t i o n B y C H E S T E R R O B A R D S B u s i n e s s R e p o r t e r c r o b a r d s @ t r i b u n e m e d i a n e t A L E A D I N G B a h a m i a n b u s i n e s s m a n s a i d y e s t e r d a y t h a t t h e B a h a m a s h a s a f i n a n c i a l i l l i t e r a c y r a t e o f c l o s e t o 9 0 p e r c e n t D r J o n a t h a n R o d g e r s s a i d d u r i n g h i s a d d r e s s t o t h e a n n u a l B a h a m a s B u s i n e s s O u t l o o k t h a t f i n a n c i a l i l l i t e r a c y c a n b e c r i p p l i n g t o a c o u n t r y s u c h a s t h e B a h a m a s g i v e n t h a t a l a r g e p a r t o f i t s e c o n o m y i s d e p e n d e n t u p o n f i n a n c i a l s e r v i c e s H e a d d e d t h a t g e n e r a l f i n a n c i a l i l l i t e r a c y h a s c a u s e d a l a r g e s e c t o r o f t h e B a h a m i a n p o p u l a t i o n t o f a i l t o d u l y p l a n f o r r e t i r e m e n t a n d n o t i n v e s t i n t h e B a h a m i a n D r e a m D r R o d g e r s t h e w e l l k n o w n B y N E I L H A R T N E L L T r i b u n e B u s i n e s s E d i t o r T h e B a h a m i a n s m a l l a n d m e d i u m s i z e d b u s i n e s s s e c t o r i s d y i n g a s l o w d e a t h t h e C h a m b e r o f C o m m e r c e s p r e s i d e n t s a i d y e s t e r d a y d e s c r i b i n g t h i s n a t i o n a s a l u m b e r i n g d i n o s a u r I c a n a l m o s t g u a r a n t e e w i l l d i e w h e n i t c a m e t o p r i v a t e a n d p u b l i c s e c t o r p o l i c y t o w a r d s t h e s e f i r m s D e s c r i b i n g t h e p r i v a t e s e c t o r a n d e s p e c i a l l y s m a l l a n d m e d i u m s i z e d b u s i n e s s e s a s b e i n g u n d e r s i e g e f r o m a c o m b i n a t i o n o f t h e g l o b a l r e c e s s i o n s t r u c t u r a l w e a k n e s s e s a n d a n i n a d e q u a t e p o l i c y r e s p o n s e K h a a l i s R o l l e a p o l o g i s e d t o B a h a m i a n s m a l l f i r m s b e c a u s e h e b e l i e v e d t h e C h a m b e r h a d n o t m e t o u r m a n d a t e w h e n i t c a m e t 0 s u p p o r t i n g t h e m I u s e t h e t e r m : T h e p r i v a t e s e c t o r i s u n d e r s i e g e h e t o l d y e s t e r d a y s B a h a m a s B u s i n e s s O u t l o o k C o n f e r e n c e I t h i n k w e n e e d t o u s e t h a t t e r m b e c a u s e t h e p r i v a t e s e c t o r i s u n d e r s i e g e e s p e c i a l l y t h e s m a l l a n d m e d i u m s i z e d e n t e r p r i s e s T h e s i e g e h a d b e e n p r o d u c e d b y a c o m b i n a t i o n o f f a l l i n g r e v e n u e s a s d e m a n d s h r u n k w h e n t h e B a h a m i a n e c o n o m y t i p p e d i n t o r e c e s s i o n d u r i n g t h e 2 0 0 8 s e c o n d h a l f ; t h e i m p e d i m e n t s c a u s e d b y t h e e v e r r i s i n g c o s t o f d o i n g b u s i n e s s ; a w o e f u l l y i n a d e q u a t e l a b o u r m a r k e t ; a n d i n c r e a s i n g c r i m e l e v e l s T h e B a h a m i a n e c o n o m y h a d e n d u r e d a s l o w p a c e o f g r o w t h o v e r t h e p a s t d e c a d e M r R o l l e s a i d w i t h s m a l l a n d m e d i u m s i z e d b u s i n e s s e s u n a b l e t o t a k e i t t o t h e n e x t l e v e l b e c a u s e t h e r e h a s n t b e e n m u c h s e c o n d g e n e r a t i o n i n n o v a t i o n i n t h e p r i v a t e s e c t o r T h e C h a m b e r p r e s i d e n t s a i d a l o t o f t h i n g s h a v e b e e n u n m a s k e d b y t h e g l o b a l r e c e s s i o n e s p e c i a l l y B a h a m i a n c o m p a n i e s t h a t w e r e n o t o p e r a t i n g e f f i c i e n t l y w h e n i t h i t w i t h s m a l l b u s i n e s s e s p a r t i c u l a r l y h a r d h i t T h e s m a l l a n d m e d i u m s i z e d s e c t o r i s d y i n g a s l o w d e a t h M r R o l l e s a i d W e a r e a l u m b e r i n g d i n o s a u r a n d i f w e d o n o t c h a n g e f r o m b e i n g a l u m b e r i n g d i n o s a u r I c a n a l m o s t g u a r a n t e e y o u w e w i l l d i e W e h a v e t o b e c o m p e t i t i v e W e h a v e t o c h a n g e o u r b u s i n e s s m o d e l s A t t h e e n d o f t h e d a y c o n s u m e r s h a v e i n f i n i t e c h o i c e W e h a v e t o s t a n d u p a n d g i v e c o n s u m e r s v a l u e f o r t h e d o l l a r s p e n t a n d i f w e d o n t d o i t t h e y w i l l g o f o r t h e l o w c o s t a l t e r n a t i v e W e c a n n o t d o b u s i n e s s a s u s u a l a n d g e t t h e t y p e o f s u p p o r t w e w a n t C M Y K C M Y K S E C T I O N B b u s i n e s s @ t r i b u n e m e d i a n e t F R I D A Y J A N U A R Y 1 5 2 0 1 0 T H E T R I B U N E $ 4 .6 8$ 4 .5 1$ 4 .6 9T h e i n f o r m a t i o n c o n t a i n e d i s f r o m a t h i r d p a r t y a n d T h e T r i b u n e c a n n o t b e h e l d r e s p o n s i b l e f o r e r r o r s a n d / o r o m i s s i o n f r o m t h e d a i l y r e p o r t $ 4 2 0 $ 4 2 2 $ 4 2 7 w o r r y f r e eg r o u p p e n s i o n s s o u n d i n v e s t m e n t m a n a g e m e n t i n d e p e n d e n t c o r p o r a t e t r u s t e e o v e r s i g h t i n d e p e n d e n t c o r p o r a t e c u s t o d i a n d i v e r s i e d i n v e s t m e n t p o r t f o l i oa l l o f t h e a b o v eF A M I L Y G U A R D I A N C O R P O R A T E C E N T R E : A T T H E J U N C T I O N O F V I L L A G E R O A D S H I R L E Y S T R E E T & E A S T B A Y S T R E E T I w w w f a m g u a r d b a h a m a s c o mc a l l u s t o d a y a t 3 9 6 4 0 8 0 A S U B S I D I A R Y O F B y N E I L H A R T N E L L T r i b u n e B u s i n e s s E d i t o r T h e G o v e r n m e n t w a s y e s t e r d a y u r g e d t o e s t a b l i s h a d e p a r t m e n t t o d e a l s p e c i f i c a l l y w i t h t h i s n a t i o n s p h y s i c a l a n d s o c i a l i n f r a s t r u c t u r e n e e d s a s e n i o r a c c o u n t a n t e s t i m a t i n g t h a t t h e B a h a m a s n e e d e d t o s p e n d $ 2 1 b i l l i o n o v e r t h e n e x t f i v e y e a r s t o b r i n g t h i s a r e a u p t o s t a n d a r d S i m o n T o w n e n d a K P M G ( B a h a m a s ) p a r t n e r a n d m a n a g i n g d i r e c t o r o f K P M G C o r p o r a t e F i n a n c e w h i l e c o m m e n d i n g t h e G o v e r n m e n t f o r f o r g i n g a h e a d w i t h i n f r a s t r u c t u r e i m p r o v e m e n t s a c r o s s n u m e r o u s s e c t o r s s a i d t h e r e w e r e a l o t o f a r e a s i n w h i c h t h e B a h a m a s c o u l d i m p r o v e e s p e c i a l l y w h e n i t c a m e t o t h e m a i n t e n a n c e a n d o v e r h a u l o f e x i s t i n g a s s e t s G o v e r n m e n t n e e d s I n f r a s t r u c t u r e D e p t t o m e e t $ 2 1 b n n e e d S E E p a g e 7 B S m a l l b u s i n e s s e s d y i n g s l o w d e a t h K H A A L I S R O L L E * B B a a h h a a m m a a s s a a l l u u m m b b e e r r i i n n g g d d i i n n o o s s a a u u r r i i n n m m e e e e t t i i n n g g s s m m a a l l l l a a n n d d m m e e d d i i u u m m s s i i z z e e d d b b u u s s i i n n e e s s s s n n e e e e d d s s , a a n n d d w w i i l l l l d d i i e e u u n n l l e e s s s s a a p p p p r r o o a a c c h h c c h h a a n n g g e e s s * C C h h a a m m b b e e r r c c h h i i e e f f s s a a y y s s p p r r i i v v a a t t e e s s e e c c t t o o r r u u n n d d e e r r s s i i e e g g e e , a a n n d d a a p p o o l l o o g g i i s s e e s s t t o o s s m m a a l l l l b b u u s s i i n n e e s s s s c c o o m m m m u u n n i i t t y y f f o o r r o o r r g g a a n n i i s s a a t t i i o o n n n n o o t t m m e e e e t t i i n n g g i i t t s s m m a a n n d d a a t t e e t t o o s s u u p p p p o o r r t t t t h h e e m m * L L a a b b o o u u r r m m a a r r k k e e t t w w o o e e f f u u l l l l y y i i n n a a d d e e q q u u a a t t e e * S S e e c c t t o o r r h h a a s s d d i i f f f f i i c c u u l l t t y y a a c c c c e e s s s s i i n n g g t t e e c c h h n n i i c c a a l l s s u u p p p p o o r r t t b b e e c c a a u u s s e e o o f f f f e e e e s s d d e e m m a a n n d d e e d dS E E p a g e 4 B B a h a m a s 9 0 % r a t e o f f i n a n c e i l l i t e r a c y B u s i n e s s m a n w a r n s t h i s h a s m a d e n a t i o n s i n k i n g r u d d e r l e s s s h i p B y C H E S T E R R O B A R D S B u s i n e s s R e p o r t e r c r o b a r d s @ t r i b u n e m e d i a n e t S T O P O V E R v i s i t o r s t o t h e B a h a m a s f e l l b e l o w t h e o n e m i l l i o n m a r k i n 2 0 0 9 f o l l o w i n g a 1 2 8 p e r c e n t y e a r o v e r y e a r c o n t r a c t i o n w i t h t o u r i s m i n d u s t r y e a r n i n g s d r o p p i n g 1 0 p e r c e n t t o a r o u n d $ 1 5 b i l l i o n Z h i v a r g o L a i n g m i n i s t e r o f s t a t e f o r f i n a n c e t o l d y e s t e r d a y s B a h a m a s B u s i n e s s O u t l o o k C o n f e r e n c e t h a t t o u r i s m c o n t r a c t e d d e s p i t e c r u i s e a r r i v a l s b e i n g u p b y 1 5 p e r c e n t y e a r o v e r y e a r H o w e v e r a i r a r r i v a l s t h e c o u n t r y s h i g h v a l u e a d d e d s t o p o v e r s e g m e n t c o n t r a c t e d b y 1 2 8 p e r c e n t t o T o u r i s m e a r n i n g s f a l l 1 0 % t o $ 1 5 b nS t o p o v e r s d r o p b e l o w o n e m i l l i o n m a r k a f t e r 1 2 8 % d e c l i n eS E E p a g e 5 B S E E p a g e 5 B Z H I V A R G O L A I N G B y N E I L H A R T N E L L T r i b u n e B u s i n e s s E d i t o r A B I S X l i s t e d c o m p a n y y e s t e r d a y a s s e r t e d i t w a s a s s o l i d a s a r o c k a f t e r r a i s i n g $ 1 m i l l i o n t o s h o r e u p i t s b a l a n c e s h e e t a n d e n s u r e i t d i d n o t e n d 2 0 0 9 i n a n e g a t i v e n e t e q u i t y p o s i t i o n t e l l i n g T r i b u n e B u s i n e s s i t s a s s e t s w o u l d g r o w b y a f u r t h e r $ 3 5 $ 4 m i l l i o n w h e n i t s C a r m i c h a e l R o a d o f f i c e / r e t a i l c o m p l e x w a s v a l u e d u p o n c o m p l e t i o n J u l i a n B r o w n B e n c h m a r k ( B a h a m a s ) p r e s i d e n t a n d c h i e f e x e c u t i v e s a i d t h e c o m p a n y w a s n o t u n h a p p y t h a t j u s t 6 7 p e r c e n t o r t w o t h i r d s o f i t s y e a r e n d p r i v a t e p l a c e m e n t w a s t a k e n u p t e l l i n g t h i s n e w s p a p e r i t h a d s e t i t s e l f a m i n i m u m g o a l o f $ 0 5 m i l l i o n W e w e r e d o d g i n g a r o u n d t h e d e f i c i t a r e a s o w e d e c i d e d t o r a i s e s o m e c a p i t a l t o e n s u r e t h e b a l a n c e s h e e t w a s s e c u r e M r B r o w n t o l d T r i b u n e B u s i n e s s W e d i d i t t o s h o r e u p o u r b a l a n c e s h e e t i n t h e e v e n t t h a t w e n e e d e d t o m a k e p r o v i s i o n s i n c a s e t h e [ i n v e s t m e n t ] p o r t f o l i o d i d n o t r e c o v e r T r i b u n e B u s i n e s s r e v e a l e d b a c k i n N o v e m b e r h o w B e n c h m a r k ( B a h a m a s ) w a s w o r k i n g o n s t r a t e g i e s t o e n s u r e i t d i d n o t e n d 2 0 0 9 i n a n e g a t i v e n e t e q u i t y p o s i t i o n w i t h a n a c c u m u l a t e d d e f i c i t o f l o s s e s M r B r o w n a c k n o w l e d g e d t h a t t h e c o m p a n y w a s t h e n t e e t e r i n g a r o u n d t h a t p o s i t i o n a s t h e n e t $ 9 3 2 7 1 6 l o s s f o r t h e f i r s t n i n e m o n t h s i n 2 0 0 9 h a d l e f t t h e c o m p a n y c l o s e t o d r o p p i n g i n t o a n e g a t i v e n e t w o r t h p o s i t i o n g i v e n t h a t n e t s h a r e h o l d e r e q u i t y a t y e a r e n d 2 0 0 8 w a s j u s t $ 4 9 4 5 2 5 T h e B e n c h m a r k ( B a h a m a s ) p r e s i d e n t t o l d t h i s n e w s p a p e r y e s t e r d a y t h a t t h e $ 1 m i l l i o n r a i s e d a n d o n w h i c h t h e c o m p a n y w i l l p a y a n 8 p e r c e n t i n t e r e s t c o u p o n w a s d u e t o m a t u r e b y y e a r e n d H e s a i d t h i s s h o r t t e r m f i n a n c i n g e q u i v a l e n t t o a b r i d g i n g l o a n s h o w e d t h e c o n f i d e n c e t h e c o m p a n y s B o a r d a n d m a n a g e m e n t h a d i n t h e i r b e l i e f t h a t B e n c h m a r k ( B a h a m a s ) b a l a n c e s h e e t w o u l d b e m u c h s t r o n g e r a t t h e 2 0 1 0 y e a r e n d O u r o b j e c t i v e s w e r e t o r a i s e $ 0 5 $ 1 5 m i l l i o n f r o m t h e p r i v a t e p l a c e m e n t a n d w e r e q u i t e p l e a s e d w i t h i t M r B r o w n a d d e d A n d w e v e o n l y d o n e i t f o r a y e a r s o t h a t g i v e s y o u a g o o d i n d i S o l i d a s a r o c k B e n c h m a r k ( B a h a m a s ) s h o r e s u p b a l a n c e s h e e t w i t h $ 1 m p r i v a t e o f f e r i n g t o e s c a p e n e g a t i v e 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i b b e a n o p e r a t i o n s L O M H o l d i n g s t h e B e r m u d a h e a d q u a r t e r e d a n d l i s t e d b r o k e r a s s e t m a n a g e r a n d f i n a n c i a l s e r v i c e s p r o v i d e r s a i d i t s C a y m a n o p e r a t i o n w o u l d c l o s e o n M a r c h 3 1 2 0 1 0 w i t h a l l c l i e n t a c c o u n t s m o v i n g e i t h e r t o B e r m u d a o r i t s N a s s a u o f f i c e s a t t h e B r i t i s h C o l o n i a l H i l t o n s C e n t r e o f C o m m e r c e A f t e r a n e x h a u s t i v e r e v i e w o f o u r r e g i o n a l o p e r a t i o n s w e h a v e d e c i d e d t h a t i t i s i n t h e b e s t i n t e r e s t o f o u r c l i e n t s a n d s h a r e h o l d e r s t o s u p p o r t t h e e n t i r e C a r i b b e a n r e g i o n f r o m o n e o f f i c e T h e r e f o r e w e h a v e d e t e r m i n e d t h a t N a s s a u B a h a m a s w i l l b e o u r n e w r e g i o n a l h u b L O M h a s h a d a n o f f i c e i n t h e B a h a m a s s i n c e 2 0 0 1 s a i d L O M ( B a h a m a s ) g e n e r a l m a n a g e r C r a i g L i n e s U n i t i n g o u r e n t i r e C a r i b b e a n s a l e s t e a m i n o n c e p l a c e w i l l a l l o w u s t o m o r e e f f i c i e n t l y m a n a g e c l i e n t s t h r o u g h o u t t h e C a r i b b e a n C e n t r a l A m e r i c a a n d S o u t h A m e r i c a B e g i n n i n g o n A p r i l 1 2 0 1 0 a l l c o m m u n i c a t i o n s w i l l b e r e d i r e c t e d t o N a s s a u a n d a n y r e m a i n i n g C a y m a n c u s t o m e r s w i l l b e s e r v i c e d o u t o f t h e B a h a m a s o f f i c e u n t i l t h e y c a n b e t r a n s f e r r e d a s p e r c l i e n t r e q u e s t s A l l L O M s s t a f f a n d f i n a n c i a l a d v i s o r s i n t h e C a y m a n o f f i c e h a v e b e e n o f f e r e d t h e o p p o r t u n i t y t o r e l o c a t e t o t h e B a h a m a s o r B e r m u d a o f f i c e s W h i l e L O M r e g r e t s t h i s m o v e a f t e r 1 5 y e a r s o f S E E p a g e 2 B SEE page 12


RBC has announced a $100,000 donation to the Red Cross to support relief and humanitarian efforts in Haiti. In addition, RBC has made its entire network of branchesi n the Bahamas, Caribbean and Canada available to receive donations on behalf of the international Red Cross. The international Red Cross is on the ground in Haiti and responding to the needs of the Haitian peopleas quickly as possible, said Caroline Turnquest, director general of the Bahamas Red Cross. Support of this effort will require massive resources so we urge you to give with the assurance that the strength and reach of the international Red Cross will make a difference in Haiti immediately during this difficult time. "The Bahamas has very close ties with Haiti and as our neighbours we must support them. I appeal to the public to exercise the generosity that Bahamians are known for and help our brothers and sisters in Haiti," said Nathaniel Beneby, vice president and country head, RBC Bahamas. The public is invited to visit any RBC Bahamas branchand donate to the Red Cross Haitian Relief Fund by account No. 2893865 or to the Embassy of Haitis Hatian Relief Fund, account No. 2892958. them in shock of jumping through windows and scaling fences to escape the collapsing concrete. Despite the trauma e ndured, Mr Rolle said he w as most concerned about his colleagues who were still u naccounted for in Haiti. He d readed the responsibility o f speaking to their wives and children. Both men attended a Caribbean Civil Aviation meeting in Port-au-Prince w ith about 30 colleagues f rom St Vincent and the Grenadines, Antigua and B arbuda and Curaao. J ust one hour before the e arthquake struck, they left their colleagues at the Mont ana Hotel to return to the Caribe Hotel, where they w ere staying. The Montana H otel was flattened in the e arthquake. Mr Rolle said 60 per cent of the Caribe disappeared. Both men were in their rooms at the Caribe sending e-mails when the quakes truck. Mr Rolle said the w alls of his room collapsed, striking him in the head and crushing his new laptop andp hone. H e said the television sailed across the room. With the hallway door jammed shut by the vibra t ions, he said he escaped t hrough the sliding door on top of a neighbouring rooftop. M eanwhile, on the other side of the hotel, Mr Adderl ey also escaped through a sliding door, running into an open area, where he wasr elieved to see Mr Rolle on the roof top, holding his head wound with a towel. My immediate thought w as my family at home. I d idnt come not to get back home. It is going to take a couple of days to process every thing, to be stable going back to my family or work, said Mr Rolle, who got emo t ional as he spoke. Before the quake, there was a residential community covering the side of a hillb ehind the Caribe. Mr Adderley estimated the population to be in the thousands. He said it was gutwrenching to see the entire residential community flat tened. He said there was s imply a white cloud of dust, with moans and cries emanating from within. M r Adderley agreed that the international media was n ot sensationalising the situation. He said the first day they left the hotel to searchf or their friends, a young school girl lay dead on the road still in her uniform. The next day, she was still in thes ame position. T his was a characteristic scene, they said, as dead bodies on the street have not be collected by the authori ties in many areas. Mr Rolle said surviving family members all over are simply sit t ing with their deceased loved ones. With rain falling for a period of time on Tues day, Mr Rolle said this i ntensified the challenges faced by the authorities to bring dignity to the deceased and ensure public health. When the men tried to seek assistance at a nearby hospital for Mr Rolles open h ead wound, they found a condemned building, formerly the site of a hospital,a nd an overcrowded United Nations clinic. At the stat ion where they found treatment, Mr Adderley said the medical staff were boilingo ld syringes, because of sup ply shortages. With no hotel to return to once the quake struck, thet wo Bahamian men slept in a bus belonging to one of the drivers assigned to their international delegation. Mr Adderley said he was par ticularly touched because the men were concerned about their safety to thep oint of refusing to go and search for their families. We had to tell them to go, we would be OK. The people were loyal. They made sure we were OK. That was mind boggling to me, said Mr Adderley, who was grateful for the kindness shown by the men. C M Y K C M Y K LOCAL NEWS PAGE 2, FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM 38%/,&7,&( THE Government yesterday a nnounced a Haiti emergency assist ance fund is being established to p rovide an organised and safe way for the Bahamian community to donate cash for the relief efforts. After talks with the Clearing Banks Association, a specific Haiti E mergency Fund has been set up. A statement issued yesterday said: The Government will undertake to ensure that donations received are directed to the government of Haiti for use in its recovery efforts, or to identified international charities and f irst response organisations renderi ng assistance on the ground in Haiti. The Government advises that assistance to Haiti is being co-ordinated with the member states of CARICOM and the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management A gency (CDEMA C ARICOM efforts are likely to b e co-ordinated from the Bahamas Embassy in Port-au-Prince, which did not sustain damage during the earthquake. Govt establishing a Haiti emergency assistance fund THE president of the B ahamas Conference of the Methodist Church, Rev Bill Higgs, announced yesterday that the BCMC is ready to launch its response to the dev astating earthquake in Haiti. According to Rev Higgs, the conference has received multi ple reports on the severe dev astation experienced throughout Haiti, especially in Port au Prince and as such, is moved to respond immediately and significantly with disaster relief through Bahamas Methodist Habitat. We called an emergency meeting with our ministers and staff persons today to propose a response to the disaster. We are looking at a two-pronged approach: immediate/emer gency and long term/rebuild ing. Already we have begun to activate our partnerships throughout the Bahamas and North America to bring relief to the victims of the earthquake, Rev Higgs said. The BCMC can aptly offer some assistance in the immediate relief efforts but our strongest area is our ability to provide long term, sustainable aid in the areas of home repairs and reconstruction. The BCMC began its Disaster Relief Programme in the wake of Hurricane Andrew in August 1992. Andrew devastated north and central Eleuthera and the Methodist Relief efforts led the way in partnership with the government to bring relief to many of the settlements there. These efforts led to the establishment of a formal organisation now known as Methodist Habitat, a full time outreach programme based at Camp Symonette in James Cis tern, Eleuthera. Methodist Habitat did a great deal of work in Grand Bahama following Hurricanes Francis and Jean in 2005, and in Inagua, Turks Island and Haiti in the aftermath of Hurricane Ike in 2008. Abraham McIntyre, execu tive director of Methodist Habitat, said the organisation is looking to partner with an In Flight Christian Pilot Associa tion to be on call to fly in relief teams and emergency aid to Haiti. Rev Higgs said the response of the conference is expected to be far-reaching and diverse. He explained that the con ference has renewed its partnership with Queens College school, which will open its auditorium on Saturday, January 16, 2010 to receive goods donat ed by the public. Sought after items include: blankets, tarps, raincoats; clothing for men, women, children and babies; shoes, bed sheets, towels, small toys for children, household utensils and non-per ishable food items. Those making donations should remember that these items have to be packed and shipped to Haiti. They are therefore being asked to refrain from donating large items. Rev Higgs added: We ask that persons also ensure that clothing and other items are in good condition. Donors are also asked to pre-sort their clothing items before bringing them to the QC auditorium. Items should be brought in firm cardboard boxes and labelled as to the content in each box. Used shoes should be placed in plastic bags with the shoe size clearly labelled on the bag. Church, student and faculty volunteers will be in place to receive, package and label the boxes. Donated items can also be delivered to BCMC Methodist Churches throughout New Providence. We also invite individuals, businesses, churches and all organisations to make a finan cial donation to the BCMC Dis aster Relief Fund. Donations can be mailed to Bahamas Methodist Habitat, PO Box SS-5103, or if you contact us we can collect your donation. Call 393-3726 or email bcmc@bahamasmethodist.org. Direct bank deposits can also be made to Methodist Habitat, Royal Bank of Canada, Mackey Street branch number 05715, account num ber 1284553, he said. BCMC launches Haiti disaster response R BCdonates $100,000 to Red Cross Haiti fund THE Rotary Club of East Nassau has made a donation of $5,000 to the relief efforts in Haiti and has vowed to raise more in the coming days and weeks. According to the clubs president Michele Rassin, they have collected more than $1,200 from members already and anticipate raising much more in the very near future. The club is working with its sister Rotary branches to collect food, medical supplies, blankets, and other necessary items that can be transported to Haiti immediately. In fact, Ms Rassin said, their past president Richard Dick McCombe will be flying down to Haiti today to deliver the supplies that have been collected thus far. She advised anyone who wants to donate food, medical items or clothing, to bring their contribution to Doctors Hos pital on Shirley Street or the Windermere Spa in the Harbour Bay Shopping Centre. Rotary Club donates $5,000 to relief efforts WORKING on the Disaster Relief Programme Bahamian officials tell of horror in Haiti F ROM page one F LIGHT STANDARD INSPECTOR H ubert Adderley was emotional on his return from Haiti. T i m C l a r k e / T r i b u n e s t a f f PAT ROLLE shows his head wound.


THE Ministry of Foreign Affairs is asking anyone with r elatives in Haiti to contact undersecretary Carlton Wright. Mr Wright can be reached at 502-9530 or 322-7624 ext 268. The ministry says it is also doing all it can to notify Bahamian citizens visiting Haiti at the time of the earthquake of the address of the Bahamian Embassy: 12 Rue Goulard Place Boyer, Petionville Port-au-Prince Telephone No. (509 4407/257-8782 Fax No. (509 Mobile No. (509 A statement issued by the ministry said: As communications to and within Haiti are difficult, persons in Haiti are asked to call the mobile number in the first instance. Pers ons in the Bahamas should channel inquiries via the ministry so that the embassy num bers are kept free for persons in Haiti trying to communicate with the Bahamas. The ministry has also been in consultation with the CARI COM Secretariat and has made the Embassy of the Bahamas available to assist in the co-ordination and delivery of assistance to Haiti. CARICOM Assistant Secre tary General Colin Granderson will head that mission. The ministry said it has con tacted the Ambassador of Haiti to the Bahamas to convey the governments commitment to assist to the best of its ability. Diplomatic representatives of the Bahamas abroad were immediately instructed to support all initiatives to assist Haiti i n responding to this disaster and are in contact with their Haitian counterparts overseas, the statement said. On behalf of the people and government of the common wealth of the Bahamas, the ministry would wish to extend its deepest condolences to the bereaved people and government of Haiti for the loss of life and property in the wake of the earthquake. By MEGAN REYNOLDS Tribune Staff Reporter mreynolds@tribunemedia.net TEAMS of Bahamian doctors, counsellors and construction workers will assist massiver elief efforts in the devastated areas of Port-au-Prince following Tuesdays catastrophic earthquake. National efforts are being coordinated by the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA part of the Caribbean Disaster Emergency Management Agency (CDEMA CDEMA delegation will travel to Haiti today to assess the destruction and devise an action plan. NEMA director Captain Stephen Russell has vowed to send three representatives to Haiti on a rotation basis and the Royal Bahamas Defence Force has two platoons on standby along with the vessels HMBS Bahamas and HMBS Nassau to be deployed to Haiti with supplies. Captain Russell has also contracted the services of the cargo vessels to transport supplies to the area once he receives con firmation from CDEMA. Donations of non-perishable food items, water, bedding and clothing to be sent to Haiti can be dropped off at the Red Cross Society Headquarters in JFK Drive, the Salvation Army in Mackey Street or Grants Town, or at donation centres set up across the country. Financial donations can also be made to various charities or directly to NEMA or the Haitian Embassy. NEMA is also appealing for volunteers in the engineering, medical and counselling professions to assist in the disaster zone. Tens of thousands are feared dead and countless more were injured and trapped in the rubble when the Haitian capital was rocked by Tuesdays magnitude 7.0 earthquake and the city collapsed around its 3.4 million population. As aid pours into the capital it is feared the citys surround ing settlements and communities in southeast Haiti also ambushed by the earthquake will be neglected and Haitian authorities assisted by United Nations troops on the ground are scrambling to co-ordinate assistance to the victims. President of the Grand Bahama Medical and Dental Association Dr George Charite is co-ordinating a team of doctors to provide emergency medical attention and Bahamas Medical Association president Timothy Barrett has urged doctors wishing to volunteer to do so through NEMA. Dr Barrett said: Once we get on the ground we have to have a larger body to be associated with so we can be effective in getting help to the people that need it because one of the things thats categorically a nightmare is to organise help in some areas and not enough in others. We will have to hold off whats definitely going to be a health nightmare because theres no place to go and as time goes on people are going to be a lot more susceptible to things like dengue fever, flus, and malaria, so if you are going you have to be aware of all these things. We will probably be able to help in the coming weeks and months, so hopefully we dont lose our passion as the immediacy of the moment passes and we can still help later on. The Salvation Army is also orchestrating a mission to Portau-Prince to provide medical assistance and distribute food and water in co-operation with its sister organisations in Haiti. Both the Salvation Army and Red Cross are working with NEMA to send donations of food, water, bedding and clothing to Haiti, the Carmichael Road Detention Centre and Inagua where a refugee camp will be established to accommodate an expected influx of refugees. Tents The Department of Immigration has indefinitely suspended the repatriation of illegal Haitian migrants and tents will be set up at the detention centre to accommodate more detainees. Haitian Ambassador to the Bahamas Louis Harold Joseph has thanked the government, the clergy, the diplomatic and consular corps, and the general public for their moral and financial support. He said: We are keeping our brothers and sisters in our prayers and will do everything in our power to assist ongoing relief efforts. According to the first estimations made by the Haitian authorities, there is tremendous damage. Port-au-Prince is practically in ruins and great loss of human life is to be expected. Faced with this situation, efforts are being made on the ground by the civil society, the government and the United Nations troops stationed in the country to rescue and give medical assistance to the victims. Those wishing to volunteer are asked to contact NEMA at 322-6081/5. To make a donation see the column on this page. C M Y K C M Y K L OCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010, PAGE 3 TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM Bahamian doctors, counsellors and construction workers head for Haiti RED CROSS BAHAMAS SOCIETY The Red Cross is appealing for donations of non-perishable foods, water, blankets, sheets, towels, cots, clothing and packing boxes. G oods will be sent to Haiti, Inagua and the Carmichael Road Detention Centre. Donations can be taken to the Red Cross Bahamas Society centre in JFK Drive; Quality Auto Sales in East Shirley Street; Le Petit Gourmet cafe in the Shirley Street Plaza; The College of theB ahamas Tourism Training Centre in Thompson Boulevard; and Bahamas Faith Ministries church in Carmichael Road. The international societies of the Red Cross aim to raise $10 million for the Haiti relief effort. Financial donations can be paid directly to the Bahamas Red Cross Societys Haiti Relief Fund at the Royal Bank of Canada, account number 5165-289-3865. THE SALVATION ARMY The Salvation Army is appealing for medical experts to volunteer their services and assist on a mission trip to Haiti which is being organised with Salvation Army groups in Haiti. Donations of goods and money to aid the effort will be accepted at their headquarters in Mackey Street and Grants Town, or call 393-2745. THE NEW PROVIDENCE COMMUNITY CENTRE (NPCC THENPCC organising a mission trip to Haiti in co-ordination with the Caribbeans Del Camino network churches in Haiti and the Dominican Republic. As they work to put a firm response plan in place, the church will only be accepting monetary donations. Cheques can be made payable to NPCC, with a note to indicate the money is for Haiti Earthquake Relief. Or call Tim Lee or Gillian Watson at the New Providence Community Centre in Blake Road, western New Providence on 327-1660, email relief@npcconline.org, or log on to www.npcconline.org. THE BAHAMAS CHRISTIAN COUNCIL Churches are encouraged to participate in a combined Haiti relief effort on Sunday by encouraging their members to bring in donations of money and goods to be sent to Haiti through the National Emergency Manage ment Organisation (NEMA The churches are also in communication with churches in Haiti to learn more about the need and how they can help. Churches wishing to get involved in the Haiti Relief Sunday effort can contact Bahamas Christian Coun cil president Patrick Pinder on 393-3453 or 393-2312 HAITIAN BAHAMIAN SOCIETY IN GRAND BAHAMA Society president Jetta Bap tiste is accepting donations at Jetta's Multi-Service Centre, 37 Hearne Lane, Freeport. Ms Baptiste met with church and business leaders in Freeport yesterday to assess ways of sending relief to Haiti and hopes to send a team this weekend. For more information call 3522384. HAITIAN GOVERNMENT The Haitian Embassy in the Bahamas has opened an emergency account at the Royal Bank of Canada main branch acccount number 2892958. For more information call the embassy on 326-0325 Members of the public are also advised to deposit funds into an account opened by members of the Clearing Banks Association, in aid of the Haiti relief effort. DONATIONS Disaster in HAITI HELPINGOUTTHEPEOPLEOFHAITI RESIDENTS IN THE MASON ADDITION AREA are urging their community to help the people of Haiti after this weeks earthquake. People in the area showed their support and dropped off items to the organisers. Stacey Bullard, Audrey Domanny, Katheleen Porter and Anthony Etienne came up with idea. Ministry of Foreign Affairs information


EDITOR, The Tribune. How painfully ironic it is that in the very midst of our lamentations for the lack of majority rule celebrations, the seemingly hapless con stituents of Elizabeth Estates, 4000 plus strong, have unwittingly become the victims of a bullying government and opposition. Could you not have found a few good men of sufficient character, integrity, intellect and with the allimportant Elizabeth Estates blood running through their veins to seek true representation of the people and not perpetuation of the status quo? In this regard, we want the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth if you can handle it. The absurd notion that doctors and lawyers must continually resort to meddling in politics for the bet terment of society (two dia metrically opposed ideas) as opposed to confronting the challenges of health and justice for all is one that must die in order for Bahamians to live. MICHAEL E NOTTAGE Nassau, January 13, 2010. EDITOR, The Tribune. Kindly allow me to respond to a complaint that I read in your paper dated, November 11, 2009, in which a Jamaican National, Mr Andrew Dillion, claimed that he was not treated fairly by Immigration officers on his arrival at the airport in October. Whatever happened on that day, it appears that he did not like the experience, because he elected to have his story printed on the front page of the paper where it could be seen at first glance. Let me say that these situat ions have been rising from t he beginning, and officers will continue to refuse leave to land, to anyone who doesnot meet the requirement as stated in the Immigration laws. As a former officer myself, I am quite aware of these situations, but I believe that it is time for a slightly different approach. I know that no one wants to go through any adverse ordeal i n a foreign country, but sometimes they do, especially o n entry. We must understand that Immigration and Migration are becoming very serious issues these days, especially where people are travelling under the pretence of bona fide visitors, when in fact, they are not. But there are many who a re bona fide, but it is difficult to tell sometimes. Regarding the detaining of visitors, I do believe that it is unfair to detain any visitor at the centre, who did not commit a crime. Therefore I think the Hon. Minister, should immediately initiate talks with airline personnel, to work out a plan whereby, the aircraft, (emphasis on Air Jamaica) must not depart until all of the incoming passengers are cleared by the immigration officers. If there are refusals, they should be returned on the same flight, or some other flight on the same day, regardless, whether the flight is full or not. If it is full, arrangements must be made to remove a passenger or passengers off to accommodate the refusals. Should the airline refuse to remove any passengers, then they must be prepared to pay officers overtime fees, to watch those refusals and also feed them, at another location, other than the detention centre (i.e. the airport they depart. That is the way it was done in the early days. Persons who are refused leave to land should not be taken to the detention centre. Though this plan may not work for nationals from count ries on the other side of the g lobe, arrangements should be made for them to transit through other countries, should their funds allow. Detaining people, causes the government money, mon eys that we do not have at this time. Furthermore, detention would cause people to tell stories that may, or may not be true, as in the case of Mr. Dillions account of his ordeal. CAPTAIN H. BAIN N assau, December 23, 2009. C M Y K C M Y K EDITORIAL/LETTERS TO THE EDITOR PAGE 4, FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 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 F reeport fax: (242 W EBSITE www.tribune242.com updated daily at 2pm WHEN it comes to natural disasters, Haiti seems to have a bull's-eye on it. That's because of a killer combination of geography, poverty, social problems, slipshod building standards and bad luck, e xperts say. T he list of catastrophes is mind-numbi ng: This week's devastating earthquake. Four tropical storms or hurricanes that killed about 800 people in 2008. Killer storms in 2005 and 2004. Floods in 2007, 2006, 2003 (twice just the 21st Century run-down. "If you want to put the worst case scenario together in the Western hemisphere (for disasters Olson, a professor at Florida Internation al University who directs the Disaster Risk Reduction in the Americas project. "There's a whole bunch of things working against Haiti. One is the hurricane track. The second is tectonics. Then you have the environmental degradation andthe poverty," he said. This is the 15th disaster since 2001 in which the U.S. Agency for International Development has sent money and help to Haiti. Some 3,000 people have been killed and millions of people displaced in the disasters that preceded this week's earthquake. Since the turn of this century the U.S. has sent more than $16 million in disaster aid to Haiti. While the causes of individual disas ters are natural, more than anything what makes Haiti a constant site of catastrophe is its heart-tugging social ills, disaster experts say. It starts with poverty, includes deforestation, unstable governments, poor building standards, low literacy rates and then comes back to poverty. This week's devastating quake comes as Haiti is still trying to recover from 2008, when it was hit four times by tropicalstorms and hurricanes, said Kathleen Tierney, director of the University of Colorado's Natural Hazard Centre. And while there is bad luck involved, former top FEMA official Mark Merritt, president of the disaster consulting firm James Lee Witt Associates, says, "It's an economic issue. It's one of those things that feeds on each other." Every factor that disaster experts look for in terms of vulnerability is the worst it can be for Haiti, said Dennis Mileti, a seismic safety commissioner for the state of California and author of the book "Disast ers by Design." A dd to that the high population densit y in the capital, many of them migrants from the countryside who live in shantytowns scattered throughout Port-au-Prince. "It doesn't get any worse," said Mileti, a retired University of Colorado professor. "I fear this may go down in history as the largest disaster ever, or pretty close to it." For this to be the deadliest quake on record, the death toll will have to top the 2004 Asian tsunami that killed more than 227,000 and a 1976 earthquake in China that killed 255,000, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. While nobody knows the death toll in Haiti, a leading senator, Youri Latortue, told The Associated Press that as many as 500,000 could be dead. "Whether it comes in as No. 1, No. 2 or No. 3, only time will tell," Mileti said. "This is a major cataclysm." Vulnerability to natural disasters is almost a direct function of poverty, said Debarati Guha Sapir, director of the World Health Organization's Centre for Research on the Epidemiology of Disasters. "Impacts are not natural nor is therea divine hand or ill fate," Sapir said. "Peo ple will also die now of lack of follow-up medical care. In other words, those who survived the quake may not survive for long due to the lack of adequate medical care." University of South Carolina's Susan Cutter, who maps out social vulnerability to disaster by county in the United States, said Haiti's poverty makes smaller disasters there worse. "It's because they're so vulnerable, any event tips the balance," said Cutter, director of the school's Hazards and Vulnera bility Research Institute. "They don't have the kind of resiliency that other nations have. It doesn't take much to tip the bal ance." (This article is by Seth Borenstein of the Associated Press). My response to Jamaican nationals complaint about immigration officers LETTERS letters@tribunemedia.net Why Haiti keeps getting hit by disasters Jewelry Sales RepresentativesNeeded for an Expanding Exciting Retail EstablishmentRequirements: Matured Previous Jewelry Sales Experience a Must Excellent Commission, Incentive and Bonus Program Motivated and Driven High School Graduate email : topseller.sales@gmail.com Apply to Continue Your Exciting Career TODAY!!!! r06')4#6+10 EDITOR, The Tribune. Of all the religious denominations in The Bahamas, based on the 2000 census next Census Day is May 3, 2010 Baptists (35 per cent), Anglican/Episcopalian (15 per cent), and Roman Catholic (14 per cent the overwhelming majority. But for all, from the Bahais to the Salvation Army, life after death is the most essential concept. The different funerary rituals of these various belief systems, both local and international, provide solace and control during the highly personal and subjective set of responses that, not unexpectedly, come to the fore with the passing of a loved one. The obituaries, or hymn sheets, normally associated with these final rites, in the words of Barrons Magazines Up and Down Wall Street columnist, Alan Abelson, generally provide a highly compressed and often fascinat ing biography of those noteworthy souls who have recently departed from the ranks of the quick. Locally, however, it seems that, in most instances in these obits, Honorary pall-bearers become, incorrectly, Honourary pallbearers. Granted, its probably a minor point under such sensitive circumstances, but perhaps, in a strictly orthographic context, and in order to bestow full honour to the distinguished individuals charged with carrying out such roles, the persons editing these mini biographies might wish to take note. Hopefully if we can all get a better grip on some of the leading causes of death in The Bahamas namely: Diseases of the heart; HIV/AIDS; Cancer; Accidents, Suicide and Homicide; Cerebrovascular Disease and Diabetes Mellitus not only will there will be a significantly reduced demand for honorary pall-bearers and everyone else involved in facilitating our final journey to the Great Beyond, but we can all enjoy a fuller, more healthful and extended life on this side of the grass. Happy New Year. SIMON ARTZI Nassau, January 5, 2010. It s Honorary never Honourary Unwitting victims of bullying gover nment and opposition


THE National Development Party has announcedt hat it will soon host an Eliz abeth electoral primary race to give constituents a chance to choose which party mem b er they would most like to see run in the upcoming byelection. We do not believe we should abandon our principlesbecause this has been thrust on us so hastily. We want toc reate a new political culture and fundamental to that is incorporation of electoral pri maries by which constituents c an choose who they believe is most fit to represent them, Dr Andre Rollins, chairman of the NDP said yesterday. Dr Rollins said he wants to see the day when political parties do not rely on a Candidates Committee, usually headed by the partys leadership, to determine who will be offered as a potential repre sentative to the people of a constituency in an election. Dr Rollins said the event, unlike any other in the history of the Bahamas, will take place within the next two weeks. We will be running adver tisements to announce to people of Elizabeth the venue for the NDPs Elizabeth electoral primary. Residents of Elizabeth and non-Elizabeth residents can attend the event where they can listen to speeches made by those who wish to earn the nomination of the party, who would be subjected to the questions of the constituents and other Bahamians present there that night. At the end of that process those persons who are on the electoral register in Elizabeth will vote on who they would like to be the NDPs candidate. The individual who obtains the majority of the votes will become the candidate, said Mr Rollins. The NDP is the sixth party to announce that it intends to field a candidate in the upcoming by-election, joiningthe FNM, PLP, Bahamas Democratic Movement, the Workers Party and the newly-formed United Christian Love Revolution Movement founded by attorney Godfrey Pro Pinder. C M Y K C M Y K LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010, PAGE 5 TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM nf rt THE Progressive Liberal P arty yesterday expressed c oncern over the suspic ious delay in the issuance of the by-election writ by the Speaker of the House of Assembly. In a statement issued to the press, the PLP notedt hat its former member of parliament Malcolm Adderley resigned as the representative of the Elizabeth Constituency on January 6 a full eight days ago. Referring to section 33, p aragraphs one and three of the Parliamentary Elections Act, the party pointed out that upon the occurrence ofa vacancy in the House of Assembly while in session, the Speaker must send am essage to the Governor G eneral requesting the i ssuance of a writ of election. Upon receipt of the Speakers message, the Governor General shall as soon as practicable issue a writ of election for the election of a m ember for the constituency f or which the vacancy has o ccurred, and there shall be n ot less than 21 nor more than 30 days between the i ssue of the writ of election a nd the return of that writ, t he Act states. Many concerned Bahamians are asking why the issuance of the writ of election is being delayed. W e in the Progressive Lib e ral Party call on the government to clarify to the Bahamian people the legitimate reasons for the delay. We remain on guard andt rust that no skullduggery or s inister plot is going on and may be the reason for the delay, the PLPs statement said. The PLP also took the opportunity to remind the government that democra-c y must not only be free and fair, but must also appear to be free and fair. The PLP fears that the d elay tactics of the government could cast doubt ont he fairness and integrity of t he electoral process. This d oubt can only deepen cynicism toward our democratic institutions and in partic-u lar our electoral process, substantially weakening our democracy. We urge the government n ot to further delay the process and to ensure that the Speaker informs the Governor General without further delay so that the voters of Elizabeth may exer c ise their constitutional right to elect a new member of parliament, consistent with the constitution, the party said. PLP concerned over by-election writ delay By ALISON LOWE T ribune Staff Reporter alowe@tribunemedia.net T HE countrys two major political parties have been accused of making a mocke ry of the intelligence of the constituents of Elizabeth after neither expressed any support for a proposal that candidates should engage in a live debate in the run-up to the oncoming by-election. Andre Rollins, Chairman o f the National Development Party, yesterday described it as absolutely embarrassing that both F NM chairman Carl Bethel and PLP chairman Bradley R oberts appear to be against t heir partys candidates Dr Duane Sands and attorney Ryan Pinder taking part in an event that would deepen democracy in the Bahamas. It is an absolute and utter shame that Bradley Robertsa nd Carl Bethel have such little faith not only in the constituents of Elizabeth but a lso in the candidates whose b iographies they are parading about the internet. These (candidates well positioned to engage in a debate, they appear to be v ery accomplished. How then can you be afraid to put them on television for all B ahamians to be able to a ppreciate whether or not they are competent in theira bilities to be solid repres entatives of the people. They have the profess ional pedigrees, now we w ant to know if they have i nterests of Bahamian people at heart, said Mr Rollins. The fledgling NDP has p reviously charged that to begin holding live televised p olitical debates in the B ahamas, such as those comm only organised prior to elections in the United Kingdom and United States, w ould represent a deepening and maturing of our d emocracy. W ith members of the public as well as the media provided an opportunity to directly question candidates, proposed representatives would be held to a higher standard of accountability, having to offer an insight into their position on issues and giving constituents a f irmer basis than any prew ritten speech can provide on which to judge their suita bility for the job. However, pressed yesterday on the concept of a live debate between political candidates, neither Mr Bethel or Mr Roberts could be said to have been particu larly keen. Mr Roberts would barely b e drawn on the matter, telling The Tribune he had no comment on the idea. H e said his party may consider such an event if the other major party suggest-e d it. M eanwhile, Mr Bethel s aid he does not think t heres much public support for such an event, adding t hat live political debates are not part of our political culture and he does not think the Bahamas is at that stage yet in its develo pment. We only do what is cult ural. We will only do what i s cultural. All politics is local, said Mr Bethel. The debate will be in the homes of every constituent of Elizabeth and constituents will in the ordinary scheme of things have the right to ask all questions that are pertinent to them of each candidate, he said. T he last public debate in t he run up to an election in the Bahamas was in 2002. At t hat time the leaders of the FNM, PLP, the Coalition for Democratic Reform and the Bahamas Democratic Movement Tommy Turnquest, Perry Christie, Bernard Nottage and Cassius Stuart d ebated each other on issues live on radio. Y esterday Mr Stuart said his party also remains in favour of live public debates. I think a national debate is a good thing and gives constituents an opportunityt o see exactly who these i ndividuals are who are v ying the represent them. It also unrobes the individual from their parties and e xposes them for what they really are and whether they have grasp of national issues. FNM and PLP accused of being afraid of political debates NDP to host Elizabeth electoral primary race PICTURED LEFT TO RIGHT at a n NDP press conference this week are: Renward Wells, Andre Rollins, Arlington Cox, Cecil Newry ANDRE ROLLINS X ELIZABETH BY-ELECTION


By NATARIO McKENZIE Tribune Staff Reporter nmckenzie@tribunemedia.net CHIEF Justice Sir Michael Barnett yesterday highlighted policies he said will increase the efficiency of the courts as well as imminent changes in the makeup of the Supreme Court. Speaking at a ceremony to mark the opening of the legal year, the Chief Justice began by acknowledging the 7.0 magnitude earthquake that devastated Haiti on Tuesday. My thoughts and prayers are with the people of Haiti and I urge persons to support generously, relief efforts to assist our neighbours in the south, Sir Michael said. The Chief Justice noted that three criminal courts will operate in New Providence and one in Grand Bahama. It is expected that in the month of January, fixtures will be set by these three courts in New Providence for the cases to be heard throughout this year. Once these dates are fixed, save in extreme cases the matters will be heard on their scheduled dates, Sir Michael said. He added: They will not be adjourned simply to accommo date the convenience of counsel for either side. Each trial judge will have a pre-trial conference in these crim inal matters not less than a week before the trial date to ensure that there are no unresolved issues which would necessitate an adjustm ent to the trial date. The Chief Justice said that the purpose of the pre-trial review is to ensure that in the event the scheduled trial is unable to proceed, another trial will be heard in that period. This is designed to ensure that valuable court time is not wasted. Justices are expected to properly manage their calendars and the trials before them. Counsel and jurors should understand that the court will begin on time at 10 am and sit until 4.30 pm or later if necessary. We have impressed on the Commissioner of Police that persons in custody should be in court so that the court can commence at 10 am. Too much time is wasted if persons in custody are not brought to court until 10.30am or even later, Sir Michael said. According to the Chief Justice there will now be a policy that jurors not take electronic communication devices when they begin their deliberations. Jurors should also be aware that it will be the policy of all courts that all electronic devices must be given to the clerk of the court for safe keeping before jury deliberations begin. No electronic communication devices will be permitted in the jury room. The Chief Justice acknowledged his predecessor Sir Burton Hall who was present yesterday, stating that the judiciary was grateful for his years of distin guished service. Sir Burton who served as Chief Justice of the Bahamas for eight years demitted office last August to become a permanent judge of the International Tribunal of the former Yugoslavia. Sir Michael also expressed grat itude to Senior Justice John Lyons who resigned last August, stating that Senior Justice Lyons had brought energy and work ethic to the courts particularly on the commercial side. The Chief Justice also acknowledged Justices Rhonda Bain, former Director of Legal Affairs and former Director of Public Prosecutions Bernard Turner who were appointed to the bench. Sir Michael also highlighted the f act that there will be further changes to the makeup of the Supreme Court in 2010. According to Sir Michael, Justice Cheryl Albury will demit office on January 31. Court of Appeal Justice Hartman Longley will retire from that court on January 31 to again become a Supreme Court judge. According to Sir Michael, The Legal Services Commission has advised the Governor General that he would become a Supreme Court judge again effective February 1, 2010. Justice Longley will be assigned as a resident justice in the northern region. This will result in the northern region having two resident justices, Justice Evans and Justice Longley. This will eliminate the need for a justice residing in New Providence, having to be assigned to Grand Bahama for short periods of time to conduct criminal trials. Both criminal and civil matters will be heard in Grand Bahama on a year round basis, Sir Michael said. The Chief Justice also noted that contrary to some media reports, the Supreme Court does not have its full complement of judges. It is important that we fill the complement of justices, he said. According to Sir Michael this will ensure that trials are dealt with on a timely basis, which will help to alleviate the backlog of cases. Addressing the need for mag istrates to serve on some of the major family islands, Sir Michael also noted that although advertisements were circulated last year only a limited number of attorneys applied. In a Bar made up of over 1,000 lawyers of whom 800 are practising, I was astonished at the limited number of applications received. The process of selection con tinues and it is expected that such magistrates will be in place in a few months. This is a matter of urgency. The family islands cannot continue to be served by magistrates from New Providence travelling to these islands on an interim basis, Sir Michael said. C M Y K C M Y K L OCAL NEWS P AGE 8, FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM Chief Justice highlights the policies for new legal year P a t r i c k H a n n a / P h o t o M an in hospital after stabbing A 51-YEAR-OLD man was stabbed multiple times as he was leaving Royals Takeaway near the corner of Market Street and Wulff Road on Wednesday night. Police say the three men approached on a bicycle and attacked him in Flemming Street just after 8pm. He was taken by ambulance for treatment and remains in hospital in stable condition. Police have launched an investigation into the incident and are urging anyone with any information which may assist investigations to call the Royal Bahamas Police Force Criminal Detective Unit on 502-9991, or call police emergency on 911 or 919, or Crime Stoppers anonymously on 328-TIPS (8477 Burger King Robbed MASKED armed robbers threatened a cashier at gun-point at the Burger King drive-through on Prince Charles Drive and escaped with an undetermined amount of cash. Police said the two men pulled up to the cashiers window at the drivethrough in a white Honda Accord at around 7.30pm on Wednesday. One of the men pulled out a handgun and demanded cash. Staff raised the alarm by pressing a panic button and police were called. But officers did not arrive until after the men robbed the restaurant of an undetermined amount of cash and fled in an unknown direction. No one was injured during the robbery. Officers investigating the incident are urging anyone with any information which may assist to call the Criminal Detective Unit on 502-9991, or call police emergency on 911 or 919, or Crime Stoppers anonymously on 328TIPS (8477 Family arraigned on firearm and ammunition allegations A NASSAU family of five and another man were arraigned in Magistrates Court yesterday on five charges relating to unli cenced firearm and ammunition allegations. Keno Hamilton, 26; Barbara Hamilton, 46; Elizabeth Hamilton, 44; Kelson Hamilton, 25; Givanani Hamilton, 17; and Michael Jordan, 18, all of Amos Ferguson Street, pleaded not guilty to all charges. Keno Hamilton was remand ed into custody as he had previ ously been convicted of a similar crime, while the others were released on bail. Magistrate Carolita Bethel read the charges to the family and Mr Jordan in Court Eight, Bank Lane yesterday morning. The first charge was posses sion of an unlicenced firearm. Prosecutors say they were found w ith a .9mm pistol, serial number TZG51400, on Saturday. The accused are further charged with being in possession of a .40 pistol, serial number 12200868, on the same date. Three further charges relate t o possession of 11 .9mm bullets, 24 .45 bullets, and nine .40 bullets.


By RENALDO DORSETT Sports Reporter rdorsett@tribunemedia.net WITH the starters seeing just 10 minutes of gametime, the C.C. Sweeting Cobras had built an already insurmountable lead and easily defeated the leagues bottom feeders in GSSSA senior boys play. The Cobras scored a 52-13 win over Anatol Rodgers yes terday to keep pace with the C.V Bethel Stingrays in a pennant race which will more than likely come down to the seasons final slate of games. C.C. Sweeting held Anatol Rodgers scoreless in the first quarter and led 19-0 after the opening period. Roosevelt Whylly was a matchup nightmare for Ana tol Rodgers in the opening quarter, dominating with nine points which included one breakaway slam dunk. Gabi Laurent added six in the quarter while Patrick Davis finished with four. Starting point guard Ange lo Lockhart began the second quarter with the second unit and quickly reeled off seven points before he was sent to the bench. The Cobras built a 29-0 lead before Anatol Rodgers finally reached the scoreboard late in the second quarter. Nearly 15 minutes into the contest, Anatol Rodgers reached the scoreboard for the first time when Tyler Thompson made a pair of free throws. Their first field goal came B y RENALDODORSETT S ports Reporter r dorsett@tribunemedia.net WITHOUThead coach Donavette Martin patrolling t he sidelines, the Government High School Magic continued to roll in GSSSA play. M arcelene St. Jean again saved her best work for the second half as she led the Mag ic with a game high 15 points in t he 32-21 win over the C.I Gib son Rattlers. Trailing for much of the first, the Rattlers staged a rally midw ay through the second half t o pull within two, however failed to surge ahead to take t he lead. A foul prone and sloppily p layed first half saw both teams struggle early on. The Magic took an early 6-0 lead and maintained thea dvantage despite a slow scoring pace to go ahead 12-8 with 3:38 left in the half on a layup by Chiquita Ferguson. L ashantah Deveaux gave the Magic their biggest lead of the first half of the next poss ession with a three point play f or a 15-8 advantage. A streaking Magic team sudd enly went cold as they missed their next eight shots from the f ield, however the Rattlers failed to capitalise on the lapse in offensive production. Nekythra Gilcud finally b roke the three-minute scoring drought for the Magic with a floater as her team took a 17-11 lead into the half. R attlers leading scorer Robin Gibson began the sec ond half with a three point w hich trimmed the deficit to three, but the Magic responded with a pair of free throws fromD eveaux to maintain a two p ossession advantage. Trailing 20-14, the Rattlers went on a 5-0 run as Gibsonsj ump hook in the lane made the score 20-19 with 10:20 left to play. Rattlers guard Stevandre W ells had an opportunity to take the lead or tie on the next possession, however, shem issed both at the line. After grabbing an offensive rebound, Jaliyah Colebrooke followed with the same opportunity when she was fouled but also missed both shots at the line. T he Rattlers would never threaten again. St. Jean went on a 6-0 run o f her own beginning with a tough running lay-up, stole the inbound pass and made a base-l ine jumper and capped the run with a fastbreak lay-up following a steal. The third basket gave the Magic a 26-19 lead with just over two minutes remaining. St Jean sealed the win as she went three of four from thel ine in the games waning moments, ending any hope of a Rattler comeback. S t. Jean finished with a team high 15 points, while Deveaux added seven and Gilcud chipped in with six. Gibson led the Rattlers with a game high 16 points. C M Y K C M Y K FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010 THETRIBUNE PAGE 9 INSIDE International sports news TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM By RENALDODORSETT Sports Reporter rdorsett@tribunemedia.net T HEdefending champions cruised to another seemingly effortless win behind their dynamic front-line and remained unbeaten in Gove rnment Secondary School S ports Association league play. P amela Bethel and Leasha G rant again led the way for the C.R Walker Knights in their 67-11 dismantling of the C.V Bethel Stingrays yesterd ay at the D.W Davis Gymnasium. B ethel finished with a game h igh 26 points, 19 of which came in the second half as the Knights lead became insurmountable, while Grant finished with 14 points and dominated the painted area on both ends of the floor. T he Knights raced out to a 14-3 lead early in the quarter and took a 29-8 lead into the half. A vaunted defence which has been C.R Walkers calling card all season held theS tingrays without a field goal i n the second half as the lead ballooned beyond 50. Bethel set the tone for the Knights in the second making three of her game high five three pointers within the first two minutes of the half. Bethels third three gave h er team a 48-10 lead with 12:41 left to play. The efficiency of the Knights half court trap was amplified when an already shorthanded Stingrays team lost primary ballhandler andl eading scorer Shatyna Stuart t o an ankle injury on the very next possession. Bethels steal and breakaway lay-up gave the Knights their first 40 point lead of the game, 50-10 with 10:04 remaining. With Grant dominating the b oards and delivering picture perfect outlet passes, the Knights fastbreak attack was in full effect with Bethel generally serving as the beneficiary on the offensive end. A trio of free throws from Shaquelle Bain served as the o nly Stingrays scores of the s econd half with Stuart sidelined. B ethels fifth jumper from long range gave the Knights a 50-point advantage with just o ver two minutes remaining, 61-11. T ameka Martin was the t hird Knight to reach double f igures with 14, while Keed rah Hanna and Theodora Bain finished with eight points apiece. Stuart led the Stingrays with six points. Knights whip Stingrays 67-11 I N the first series of t he New Providence Volleyball Association playoffs, teams came out to execute their game plans in an effort t o get one step closer to the championships. In the ladies match t he Johnsons Lady Truckers, shorthanded with only six players, p ulled off the first game against the COB Caribs 25-21, 25-19 and 25-12.A nastasia SandsMoult rie and Shantia McPhee led all scorers w ith 12 and 11 points respectively for the win.J anet Williams scored 7 points for the Caribs. In the men's match, The Scotiabank Defenders quickly dis posed of DaBasement 25-21, 25-12 and 25-16. S hedrick Forbes and Sherwaine Arthurs ledt he charge with 11 and 9 p oints respectively to s ecure the win. Ronnie Lexidor led Da Basement with 5 points in a losing effort. PLAYOFF ACTION CONTINUES FRIDAY: 7:30pm Scottsdale Vixens (Pennant win n ers) vs Champions 8:30pm Technicians ( Pennant runners up) vs National Fence Intrud-e rs. Short-handed Lady Truckers defeat Caribs Bethel scores game high 26 points Theodora Bain Magic dazzle Rattlers Marcelene St. Jean Whylly dominates as Cobras tr ounce Anatol Rodgers SEE page 10


C M Y K C M Y K S PORTS P AGE 10, FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010 TRIBUNE SPORTS TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM SPOR TS IN BRIEF TENNIS SAN JOSE, Calif. Associated Press PETE Sampras would like a sit-down with long time American rival Andre Agassi away from the tennis court to discuss Agas si's harsh words about the 14-time Grand Slam champion in his recent autobiography, "Open." Sampras said Thursday he was surprised and disappointed by Agassi's "shots" at Sampras in the book and would like tomeet "man to man" to discuss it. Sampras hasn't read Agassi's book, in which Agassi acknowledged taking crystal meth, and does n't plan to. Agassi also talks about evading punishment for a failed drug test and dealing with the insane pressure he felt from his overbearing father and coach. "He was a big rival," said Sampras, who retired in 2003. "I think it's a reflection that I didn't know Andre all that well in our competitive days. Got to know him a little bit betteras we got older, but in (our mid-20s and times he was there and at times he was a little removed. Little did I know he was getting involved in some bad decisions." Sampras spoke on a con ference call organized by the SAP Open, where he is scheduled for a Feb. 8 exhi bition match against Spain's Fernando Verdasco. Sam pras even expressed amazement at Agassi's timing to make such dramatic reve lations about his personal life and problems. Sampras 'disappointed' by remarks in Agassi's book F OOTBALL INDIANAPOLIS A ssociated Press P IERRE Garcon made contact with some family members in Haiti and received some good news. The Indianapolis Colts receiver said Thursday he gotc alls earlier in the day from r elatives, who let him know they had survived the earthq uake that devastated Haiti two days earlier. G arcon said his mother r eceived a call from a relative on Wednesday night. I heard from some family, got some good information,"h e said. "We're still looking for the rest of them. We've still g ot more people that need to b e found. We're still hoping that everybody's all right." Garcon attended high school in Florida, but his pare nts emigrated to the U.S. f rom Haiti, and most of his relatives still live there. Garcon, v isibly drained after Thurs day's practice, said he's thankf ul for the concern people h ave shown for the nation. There's a lot of support," h e said. "It's nice to get support from a lot of people. I really appreciate it. We need a lot more." Garcon is expected to play i n Saturday's playoff game against Baltimore, but he's s truggling to focus. It's hard, but it's something you've got to do," he said. You've got to deal with it. I t's kind of tough, but there's n ot much you can do about it." Garcon has used Twitter to get people to help the country, and he is giving auto-g raphed items to fans who d onate money to the relief effort. "Eventually, I'll go down there," he said. "My mom's going down there soon, I haveo ther family members going down there, and people from church are going down there." M eanwhile, Jozy Altidore, w ho plays for the U.S. national soccer team, has been unable to get through to his relatives in Haiti and is already preparing to travel to the devastated country. A ltidore, whose parents moved to the U.S. from Haiti 35 years ago, has more than a dozen family members uncles, aunts, nephews and nieces unaccounted for. W ith phone lines down and I nternet connections wiped out, traveling there seems the only option. We are just praying that is all we can do right now because communicating with H aiti is very difficult," the 20y ear-old Altidore said in a telephone interview with The Associated Press on Thursday. There is not much (news terms of the status of my fam ily. We have been constantly tracking the Red Cross Web s ite but we still can't get t hrough to anybody there. We k now as much as everybody else." Altidore plays in England for Premier League club Hull. "I want to go now if I'm a ble to make the trip over and h elp in any way," he said. "My mother and father (Joseph and Giselle) are also looking into going, but I'm also concerned for their safety there." A lditore, who is expected to be on the U.S. squad at the World Cup in South Africa in J une, was assured Thursday b y Hull manager Phil Brown that he will be given compassionate leave to help the search. Donations for victims of the 7.0 magnitude earthquake con t inued to flow in from the sports world. Major League Baseball pledged $1 million to help victims of the earthquake. Commissioner Bud Selig s aid in a news release Thursd ay that the contribution is being made on behalf of the league and its 30 teams. This generous donation from Major League Baseball will help save the lives of Haiti an children," said Ann M. V eneman, executive director of UNICEF. "The people of Haiti urgently need food, fresh w ater, shelter and medical supplies, and the first days are crucial." Garcon hears from family after Haiti disaster IN THIS Dec. 6, 2009, file photo, Indianapolis Colts wide receiver Pierre Garcon (85 NFL football game against the Tennessee Titans in Indianapolis. Garcon walked into the team's complex on Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2010, with a heavy heart. The fun-loving receiver's trademark smile was deeply concerned after Haiti's devastating earthquake and the fate of "countless" relatives who live neart he capital city of Port-Au-Prince. A J M a s t / A P P h o t o M ARTIAL ARTS M IAMI LAKES, Fla. Associated Press H ERSCHEL Walker is always looking for something to do. He'll climb into a steel cage t his time to try his hand -fists, actually, and just about anything else on his still-s culpted 47-year-old body -at mixed martial arts. This means Walker will have gone from ballet to bobsleds to bru-t ality after winning the Heisman Trophy as a running back at the University ofG eorgia and a noteworthy pro football career, too. He's nothing if not a rest less and curious soul. ''People always say what you can't do instead of what you can," Walker said in what serves as a mantra for his life. "This is the hardest thing I've ever done. Sometimes, you have to set your ego aside. I missed Christmas and New Year's (while training can tell I'm serious, because I love Santa Claus." He says his fight debut, scheduled for Jan. 30 at BankAtlantic Center, is no joke. Walker, in fact, said it was "an insult" to have watched unprepared former baseball star Jose Canseco embarrass himself in a mixed martial arts debacle. If he's being fast-tracked in promotions by his Strikeforce handlers -and he absolutely is -Walker is a willing and fearless participant in the show. ''I'm not even a little bit afraid," Walker said. "I've had great respect for this s port ever since I saw it for the first time and said to myself, 'I want to do that.'T hat respect has helped me learn what I have to learn to do this." Walker, by the way, holds a f ifth-degree black belt in tae kwon do, but said that partic ular discipline probably did him more harm than good when it came to training for mixed martial arts. Different movements, he said. Different lots of stuff, he said. ''I had to forget some t hings," Walker said. But he still looks good. He's eating only one meal a day, as usual -no red meat, as usual -and getting through on "three or four hours" of sleep, as usual. His oncefamous workout routine con sisting of what he said was once 5,000 push ups and 5,000 sit-ups per day is all the way down to 1,500 push-ups and 2,500 sit-ups on heaviest daily duty. ''I can lift a bus," Walker said. Maybe he can. He spars regularly with a kid who wasn't born when Walker won his Heisman Tro phy in 1982. His trainer, Javier Mendez, went from thinking Walker was "ridicu lous" for taking a fight while still an MMA novice to calling him a "one of a kind athlete." Walker, at 6-foot-1 and 216 pounds, said his body fat has been measured at 4 percent, and Dr. Allan Fields, a physician on hand for Tuesday's news conference, declared him a cardiovascular marvel. W alker jumps into MMA the way he does ever ything full tilt FORMER NFL player and Heisman Trophy winner Herschel Walker discuss his upcoming MMA match during a Strikeforce news conference in Miami Lakes, Fla. Tuesday, Jan. 12, 2010. The former running back holds a fifth-degree black belt in Tae Kwon Do. J P a t C a r t e r / A P P h o t o a bout a minute later when T hompson made a three pointer from the right wing with 1:02 left to play in the half. The Cobras onslaught continued with a 14 point q uarter and they led 33-5 a t the half. The lead reached 30 for the first time on a three point play by Kemsy Sylvester which made the score 36-6 early in the third q uarter. A shanteo Cooper became the only other member of the Anatol Rodgers lineup to score with Thompson on theb ench when he made a t hree pointer of the left w ing for a 42-12 deficit. Thompson added anothe r free throw and the Cobras took a 42-13 lead i nto the fourth. With the game well out of reach, the second half became a showcase for the flashy passing skills of backup point guard Leon Saund ers who thrilled his bench w ith several highlight reel assists. Saunders spun through a t rio of Anatol Rodgers defenders, and dished a no look pass over his should ers to a wide open Carson S aunders who finished to regain the 30 point lead for the Cobras, 44-13. The Cobras lead reached its biggest of the game when Saunders dished aw rap around pass behind his back to Sylvester who finished for the games final score. The Cobras ended the f inal quarter as they began the game as they held Ana t ol Rodgers scoreless. Sylvester finished with seven points, while Leona nd Carson Saunders added six points apiece. Thompson led all scorers with 10. Cobras trounce Anatol Rodgers F ROM page nine


C M Y K C M Y K L OCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010, PAGE 11 TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM suspend Ms Wilson over alleged abuse of union funds. M r McPhee said he was never informed t hat the petition was being circulated and only l earned of it when he was contacted by a distraught Family Island educator who wanted to know the meaning of it. Having been told by the educator that he had received the petition with the informa-t ion that it was from the President, Mr M cPhee then issued his own letter to union members. In it he told them that the individuals listed in the presidents petition, which proposed their removal, were committed to working for union members as they were mandated to do. He said that they had been working tirelessly to internally address seriousb reaches allegedly attributed to President Wilson. You elected the executive committee in June 2008 to do the unions business respon-s ibly and account for our actions. We take our d uties seriously and have been doing just that, he told them. The letter outlined numerous sums of union f unds in the thousands that the executives alleged have either been used for non-union related purposes or were used without propera uthorisation. A mong these, it is alleged that $1,000 was used to have a non-union family member stay at a hotel. It claimed that $65,000 was also taken out from the unions pension savings w ithout the executive committees knowledge. T he letter alleged that Mrs Wilson was circulating a petition asking members to recall the eight executive officers on the false claim that they were not doing the unions business. Those listed were Secretary General, Stephen M cPhee; Assistant Secretary General, Jeleah T urnquest; Trustee, Julimae Johnson-Roberts; T rustee, Margaret Albury; Assistant Treasurer, Andrea Lockhart; Area Vice President for New Providence, Bridgette Seymour; Execu-t ive member for Exuma, Philip Sturrup, and Executive member for Grand Bahama, Maralyn Burrows. The executive committee has been worki ng diligently and at the greatest level of trust a nd accountability, said the letter sent out b y the Secretary General. The eight members listed in the petition make up over half of the total executive team of the union, which consists of 15 persons. In the petition, which was apparently circulated sometime before Christmas, it is stat-e d that two votes of no confidence brought against Mr McPhee and the unions Vice President at last years annual general meeting were withdrawn because the executive committee agreed to work together for the betterment of the union. However, the petition goes on to outline h ow the executive committee later voted eight to four to suspend Mrs Wilson as president, accusing her of misappropriation of union funds without an investigation being launched and that the Appeals Committee found the suspension to be out of order and declared it n ull and void. The petition then alleges that the execut ives disrespected the membership by declari ng the decision of the Appeals Committee null and void. The President has consistently assisted and fought for members experiencing hardship, victimisation and persecution on their jobs, while most of the other executives have shown very little interest and support in this r egard, said the petition. They seem more f ocused on punishing the President than helpi ng the membership, the petition continued. T he petition then outlined how the unions constitution allows for executive members to b e forced to resign if a petition calling for such a ction gathers the signatures of 50 per cent of t he membership. The petition urged members t o add their signatures to this effort against the eight members listed. It also asked that they support the calling of a special general meeting to deal with the matter. A sked if she were responsible for the petition, and what she made of its contents, Mrs W ilson said she had "no comment." f ar away where they stayed for several minutes. He further testified that Brenton had intended to stop at the home of a girl in Kemp Road but after learn i ng that she was not at h ome, they proceeded back t o his house. Thompson said that as he and Brenton approached a short cut att he rear of the City Market food store on Village Road they saw two boys. Thompson described one of the young boys as being about 4ft 11ins tall, brown skinned and between 13 and 14 years. He said the boy wore a red shirt and short white pants. He recalled that the other was about his height, 5ft 11ins, and verydark skinned. He said the other boy wore a dark coloured shirt and white pants. He appeared to be between 17 and 18. Thompson said that on that night he was wearing a camouflage singlet and short black and white pants. He said that Brenton wore a white T-shirt and blue jeans. Thompson recalled that the younger boy, who was standing by the hole in the wall at the rear of the food store, looked back through the hole, picked up his slip pers and ran to catch up with the other boy who was walking towards them. Thompson said the two young boys walked past them. We continued to walk towards the shortcut. Brenton was saying and I was thinking it looked suspicious that the younger one beganto run, Thompson said. Thompson also recalled that a black Ford ExplorerSUV drove around the cor ner and stopped in front of them before speeding off. He said Brenton told him to wait behind and started to walk ahead to the hole in the wall. Thompson said that Brenton peeked through the hole in the wall, then pulled his head back and leaned against the wall. Thompson said he saw a hand with a gun reach around the wall and then a shot was fired. Thompson said the Explorer they had seen only moments earlier stopped. He recalled that the gunshot left his ears ringing and he watched as Brenton staggered towards him and collapsed while coughing up blood. He said he discovered that Brenton had been shot in the left side of his chest. Thompson said he held his friend and told him told him he wasnt going to die. He said that he had attempted to call 919. Thompson testified that he saw three people walk ing towards them. He said they all had on suits with badges on their waists, although they never identi fied themselves as police officers. According to the witness, one of them, who he described as dark, a little pudgy and about 6ft tall, had a silver gun in his hand. He also testified that he saw four people get out of the Explorer. Thompson said he did not see an ambulance until he was escorted into a police vehicle. He said that he and Brenton were not involved in the robbery of the City Market food store. Forensic pathologist Dr Govinda Raju, who was the second witness to testify, told the court that he performed an autopsy on Mr Smith on July 15, 2009. Mr Smith, he said, was dressed in blue jeans and a white T-shirt. He described him as being approximately 6ft 1in tall and weighing 160 pounds. Dr Raju said there was an entry gunshot wound to Smiths front left uppera rm but no exit wound. He retrieved the bullet from Smiths back around his right shoulder joint. The bullet was turned over to police ballistics experts. Sergeant Santrice Bow l eg told the court that while on mobile patrol with Sergeant 451 Sands around 8.30pm, they received a call f rom the police control room about an armed robbery at the City Market foodstore on Village Road. S he said they arrived at w hat she recalled as Barbara Street where she saw a male dressed in a white shirt and blue jeans lying on the ground. She said she made inquiries and was informed by Detective Corporal 1476 Kelsie Munroe that he had discharged his weapon. She said a crowd had gathered and she took DC Munroe to where his marked police car was parked at the rear of City Market. She said DC Munroe and his partner left in the police vehicle with DC Munroe driving. Sergeant Bowleg said she recalled hearing a descrip tion of a person wearing a white shirt and blue jeans in connection with the armed robbery but said she was not certain. Attorney Roger Gomez Jr, who represents the Smith family, asked her why she was so concerned about offi cer Munroe. Sgt Bowleg said it was a hostile environment and she wanted to get him out of that environment. She said it was normal police procedure when an officer is involved in a shooting. Mr Gomez asked her if she had called an ambulance and she admitted that she did not as she had assumed that someone else had called for an ambulance already. Mr Gomez also asked her why she and her partner had gone to the rear of the store. Sgt Bowleg said they believed the robbers would come from the rear. She said she had been concerned for Brentons safety but Mr Gomez questioned how could that be so if she did not know if he were alive or dead. The hearing continues. FROM page one Friend of Br enton Smith saw suspicious looking boys on night of fatal shooting Teachers union president tight-lipped on petition FROM page one BRENTON SMITH


C M Y K C M Y K L OCAL NEWS P AGE 12, FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM COMINGSOON........... AUNIQUE I NITIATIVE SHOWCASING THEWORKOF TALENTEDYOUNG BAHAMIANS McCarthy Jean-Baptiste, 2 0, of Carter Street, Oakes Field, Nassau, was shot int he head in Sunlight Cott age, off East Street, just b efore 1.30am yesterday by robbers who had held him up earlier. P olice maintain Mr JeanBaptiste was in Carew Street, off Mount RoyalA venue, when he was r obbed by two men wear ing hooded jackets. He then saw the two m en in Sunlight Cottage and confronted them, according to police reports. O ne of the robbers then pulled out a handgun and opened fire, fatally shooting Mr Jean-Baptiste in the h ead. He is the fifth murder victim of the year. Royal Bahamas Police Force press spokesman Sgt Chrislyn Skippings issueda warning to the public. She said: If you are accosted or robbed by anyo ne, try to remain calm. Try not to panic, or show signs of anger or confusion. Do not fight back and try to take the matter into your own hands. Get a good description o f the attackers and the direction they would have fled and contact the police. An increase in murders and violence inflicted by armed robbers is feared by Bahamas Against Crime leader Reverend C B Moss who warned businesses to take extra precautions following the murder of a Berthas GoGo Ribs employee gunned down at the takeaway on Poinciana Avenue in September. Just weeks earlier, mother-of-three Wendy Bullard was gunned down in front of her office at 21st Century Steel Weld ing on Royal Palm Street. Police are appealing for information to aid the investigation into Mr JeanBaptistes murder. Anyone with any information that may assist investigations should call the Criminal Detective Unit at 502-9991, police emergency at 911 or 919,or call Crime Stoppers anonymously on 328-TIPS (8477 which represents more than 6,000 workers, will now have to go back to square one and hold new nominations and elections. The executive council of the union now has seven days from yesterdays decision to meet and set a new nomination and election date, a suggestion that was raised by Justice Christopher Blackman and agreed by all parties. Dozens of union members showed up at the Court of Appeal yesterday to witness the proceedings. After an hour-long hearing, the Court set aside the decisions of Senior Justice Jon Isaacs and Justice Neville Adderley. Senior Justice Isaacs had declared the May 28 elections null and void. Nicole Martin had won that election by a landslide. More than a month after that decision, Justice Adderley ordered a new nomination process which paved the way f or new elections in late Sep tember. Those elections yield ed similar results for Ms Martin and her team. Last week, however, Justice George Newman granted a stay of Justice Adderleys decision pending yesterdays appeals hearing, resulting in Ms Martin once again having to vacate her post. We are saying that the judges decisions regarding the appeals will not be allowed to stand. The matter will have to start afresh, Dame Joan said yesterday. The court is expected to produce a written decision tomorrow. Also heard will be arguments on costs. Outside the court yesterday, Ms Martin told reporters, I think the obvious thing is that people preferred not to do this again but of course we have to respect and obey the wishes of the court. This has been a learning experience. My tolerance has been tried but at the end of the day if it is the peoples w ish, the peoples wish has always been what has been carried out. My personal feelings aside, I must now do what is in the best interest of the union. This is going to make our union in the long run a better union, a stronger union and union that really has to be responsible. Roy Colebrooke, who remains the unions President in the interim, told reporters: We have to do what is in the best interest of the organisa tion and not ourselves. This is a very costly venture for the union. While all of us are members of the union this is a cost that comes directly from the membership. I trust that this is the last time that we have to go through this process. According to Mr Colebrooke, it costs the union $20,000 to hold elections. Attorney Keod Smith, who represents several union exec utives, said the decision is par ticularly significant because it highlights the function of the u nions executive council. What we have had is a clear situation where the courts have now articulated that the executive council of the union is the head body of the union. That has been the issue falling through cracks all the time. In those circumstances, we have a very clear articulation of what the position the exec utive council is that the executive council should have followed and what the members should follow, Mr Smith said. During the hearing yesterday, the court noted the main issue for the court was the validity of the actions taken by Registrar of Trade Unions Harcourt Brown as well as the actions of Secretary General Leo Douglas. The Registrars decision to certify May 4, 2009, which was communicated to him by Mr Douglas as the nomination date for the first elections and his decision, was central to the union dispute. First vice-president Kirk Wilson had i nformed the Registrar that May 11 was the nomination date. He was not allowed to run in the May 28 elections as he failed to nominate on May4 but ultimately succeeded in getting the election results overturned because of procedural errors. It is the council that must exercise its power and it must exercise it in accordance with the constitution as to the date and time the union elections will be held. That is not some thing you can delegate beyond the rank of executive council, Dame Joan said. Justice Newman also noted that the executive council could delegate general powers to carry out the unions business but there were spe cific powers the council held. What is just and right and proper is that each member of the union must have their right under the unions constitution to elect who they wish to carry on their business for the ensu ing term. That is democracy in action, Dame Joan added. leaving the constituency without a representative. During last nights conference Mr Ingraham also announced that the government plans to release Haitian nationals currently held at the detention centre and give them temporary status. He said the government would apply a different course of action, although unspecified, for any new detainees that might arrive. He said the government did not fear a significant change in migration patterns, considering the fact that most Haitians who migrate to the Bahamas, come from the northern part of Haiti. This area was unaffected by Tuesdays earthquake that ravaged Portau-Prince. Mr Ingraham said Haitians living in Port-au-Prince were not historically an immigration concern. The press conference was called, not only to announce the confirmation of Dr Sands as the FNMs by-election can didate, but to allay the oppositions sus picions about perceived stalling tactics in calling the election. He reminded them of the Bahamas recent history of byelections. He recalled the last record ofa by-election that was called as a result of former Prime Minister Sir Lynden Pindling resigning his seat. Sir Lynden resigned on July 9, 1997. The Speaker of the House advised the Governor General in a letter dated August 5, 1997. A writ of election was issued on August 11, and the election was held on September 5. Mr Ingraham noted it took over 50 days for a by-election to occur the last time it was needed. With only eight days transpiring since the resignation of the former Elizabeth MP, Mr Ingraham said in keeping with established precedents, an election would be ordered in due course. In further addressing the unfolding humanitarian crisis in Haiti, Mr Ingra ham said he considered organising a government mission to Haiti in keeping with plans by the Jamaican, Barbadian and Dominican Prime Ministers, but decided against it. What could I possibly do except get in the way of people? What we can do to help the Haitian people can be done from the Bahamas, he said, noting the governments account that was set up at all commercial banks to accept donations for the relief effort. While private organisations are organ ising flights to Haiti with relief supplies, Mr Ingraham said the government was not making any efforts to transport equipment. In speaking as Leader of the FNM, Mr Ingraham said the party was ready to contest the seat in Elizabeth with their newly declared candidate Dr Sands. He said the election would be fought on the ground, going street by street, house by house. You have heard a chorus of confusion from Opposition quarters ever since the resignation which precipitated thisb y-election. That is not surprising since confusion has been their hallmark for quite some time now. In due course we will sweep up all the debris they are attempting to strew in our path and dispose of all the smoke and mirrors they are using in an attempt to confuse the Bahamian public, he said. D r Sands said the people of Elizabeth could rest assured that he would bring the same level of service and professional expertise to his political career as he does to his medical career. I N REPLYto an article in Thursdays Tribune, headed Police accused of beating, giving suspect electric s hock, the Royal Bahamas P olice Force has confirmed t hat the Complaints and C orruption branch of the f orce is investigating the alleg ation of brutality against an u nconfirmed number of police officers. Barry McPhee, Jr, claimed he was arrested by p olice and accused of steali ng an LG Shine cell phone, w hich he claimed he purc hased from a street vendor. H is mother claimed that p olice officers wrapped S aran wrap around his head. They taped his mouth, handcuffed his hands behind his back, threw water on him a nd shocked him with a live w ire connected to a car batt ery. She also alleged that t he police could not produce a ny documentation to prove t hat there was a charge a gainst her son or a warrant for his arrest. The public is assured, said a statement from the R oyal Bahamas Police F orce, that the Royal B ahamas Police Force takes a ll allegations of misconduct o n the part of police officers, p olice reservists and police c ivilians seriously. Similarly, members of the Royal Bahamas Police Force have the assurance of the Comm and of the Royal Bahamas P olice Force that while they a re performing their duties i n line with the Constitution o f the Bahamas, all other rele vant laws and police force p olicies which guarantee the rights of all persons, they have the full support of the Force. However, nothing in this s tatement is to be construed a s an acceptance of abuse of m embers of the public or m alicious complaints against p olice officers. Police respond to beating allegations Man shot dead after confr onting robbers FROM page one FROM page one Ruling sends hotel union back to polls Go vernment not stalling over by-election DR DUANE SANDS speaks to the media after Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham announced him as the candidate for Elizabeth. FROM page one T i m C l a r k e / T r i b u n e s t a f f


Broker selects Bahamas for consolidation By CHESTER ROBARDS Business Reporter crobards@tribunemedia.net A LEADING Bahamian b usinessman said yesterday that the Bahamas has a financial i lliteracy rate of close to 90 per cent. D r Jonathan Rodgers said during his address to the annual Bahamas Business Outlookt hat financial illiteracy can be crippling to a country such as the Bahamas, given that a large part of its economy is dependent upon financial services. He added that general finan c ial illiteracy has caused a large sector of the Bahamian popu l ation to fail to duly plan for retirement, and not invest in the Bahamian Dream. Dr Rodgers, the well-known B y NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor The Bahamian small and medium-sized business sector i s dying a slow death, the Chamber of Commerces presi dent said yesterday, describing this nation as a lumbering d inosaur I can almost guarantee will die when it came to pri vate and public sector policy towards these firms. Describing the private sec t or, and especially small and medium-sized businesses, asb eing under siege from a combination of the global r ecession, structural weakness es and an inadequate policy response, Khaalis Rolle apologised to Bahamian small firms because he believed theC hamber had not met our mandate when it came t0 sup p orting them. I use the term: The private sector is under siege, he told yesterdays Bahamas Business Outlook Conference. I think we need to use that term, because the private sector is under siege, especially the small and medium-sized enterprises. The siege had been produced by a combination of falling rev enues, as demand shrunk when the Bahamian economy tipped into recession during the 2008 second half; the impediments caused by the ever-rising cost of doing business; a woefully inadequate labour market; and increasing crime levels. The Bahamian economy had endured a slow pace of growth over the past decade, Mr Rolle said, with small and medium-sized businesses unable to take it to the next level because there hasnt been much second generation innovation in the private sector. The Chamber president said a lot of things have been unmasked by the global recession, especially Bahamian com panies that were not operating efficiently when it hit, with small businesses particularly hard hit. The small and mediumsized sector is dying a slow death, Mr Rolle said. We are a lumbering dinosaur, and if we do not change from being a lumbering dinosaur, I can almost guarantee you we will die. We have to be competitive. We have to change our business models. At the end of the day, consumers have infinite choice. We have to stand up and give consumers value for the dollar spent, and if we dont do it they will go for the low cost alternative. We cannot do business as usual and get the type of support we want. C M Y K C M Y K SECTIONB business@tribunemedia.net FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 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.$4.29 $4.29 $4.29The information c ontained is from a third party and The Tribune can not be h eld responsible for errors and/or omission from the daily report. $4.20 $4.22 $4.27 worry freegroup pensions sound investment management independent corporate trustee oversight independent corporate custodian diversied investment portfolioall of the aboveFAMILY GUARDIAN CORPORATE CENTRE: AT THE JUNCTION OF VILLAGE ROAD, SHIRLEY STREET & EAST BAY STREET I www.famguardbahamas.comcall us today at 396-4080 A SUBSIDIARY OF By NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor The Government was yesterday urged to establish a department to deal specifically with this nations physical and social infrastructure needs, a senior accountant estimating that theB ahamas needed to spend $2.1 billion over the next five years to bring this area up to standard. Simon Townend, a KPMG (Bahamas director of KPMG Corporate Finance, while commending the Government for forging ahead with infrastructure improvements across numerous sectors, said there were a lot of areas in which the Bahamas could improve, especially when it came to the maintenance and overhaul of existing assets. Gover nment needs Infrastructur e Dept to meet $2.1bn need SEE page 7B Small businesses dying slow death KHAALISROLLE * B B a a h h a a m m a a s s a a l l u u m m b b e e r r i i n n g g d d i i n n o o s s a a u u r r i i n n m m e e e e t t i i n n g g s s m m a a l l l l a a n n d d m m e e d d i i u u m m s s i i z z e e d d b b u u s s i i n n e e s s s s n n e e e e d d s s , a a n n d d w w i i l l l l d d i i e e u u n n l l e e s s s s a a p p p p r r o o a a c c h h c c h h a a n n g g e e s s * C C h h a a m m b b e e r r c c h h i i e e f f s s a a y y s s p p r r i i v v a a t t e e s s e e c c t t o o r r u u n n d d e e r r s s i i e e g g e e , a a n n d d a a p p o o l l o o g g i i s s e e s s t t o o s s m m a a l l l l b b u u s s i i n n e e s s s s c c o o m m m m u u n n i i t t y y f f o o r r o o r r g g a a n n i i s s a a t t i i o o n n n n o o t t m m e e e e t t i i n n g g i i t t s s m m a a n n d d a a t t e e t t o o s s u u p p p p o o r r t t t t h h e e m m * L L a a b b o o u u r r m m a a r r k k e e t t w w o o e e f f u u l l l l y y i i n n a a d d e e q q u u a a t t e e * S S e e c c t t o o r r h h a a s s d d i i f f f f i i c c u u l l t t y y a a c c c c e e s s s s i i n n g g t t e e c c h h n n i i c c a a l l s s u u p p p p o o r r t t b b e e c c a a u u s s e e o o f f f f e e e e s s d d e e m m a a n n d d e e d d SEE page 4B Bahamas % rate of finance illiteracy Businessman warns this has made nation sinking, rudderless ship By CHESTER ROBARDS Business Reporter crobards@tribunemedia.net STOPOVER visitors to the Bahamas fell below the one million mark in 2009 following a 12.8 per cent year-over-year contraction, with tourism indus try earnings dropping 10 per cent to around $1.5 billion. Zhivargo Laing, minister of state for finance, told yester days Bahamas Business Outlook Conference that tourism contracted despite cruise arrivals being up by 15 per cent year-over-year. However, air arrivals, the countrys high value-added stopover segment, contracted by 12.8 per cent to Tourism earnings fall 10% to $1.5bn Stopovers drop below one million mark after 12.8% decline SEE page 5B SEE page 5B ZHIVARGO LAING By NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor A BISX-listed company yesterday asserted it was as solid as a rock after raising $1 million to shore up its balance sheet and ensure it did not end 2009 in a negative net equity position, telling Tribune Business its assets would grow by a further $3.5$4 million when its Carmichael Road office/retail complex was valued upon completion. Julian Brown, Benchmark (Bahamas chief executive, said the com pany was not unhappy that just 67 per cent or two-thirds of its year-end private placement was taken up, telling this newspaper it had set itself a minimum goal of $0.5 million. We were dodging around the deficit area, so we decided to raise some capital to ensure the balance sheet was secure, Mr Brown told Tribune Business. We did it to shore up our balance sheet in the event that we needed to make pro-v isions in case the [investment] portfolio did not recover. Tribune Business revealed back in November how Benchmark (Bahamas working on strategies to ensure it did not end 2009 in a negative net equity position, with an accumulated deficit of losses. Mr Brown acknowledged that the company was then teetering around that posi t ion, as the net $932,716 loss f or the first nine months in 2009 had left the company close to dropping into a negative net worth position, given that net shareholder equity at year-end 2008 was just $494,525. The Benchmark (Bahamas newspaper yesterday that the $1 million raised, and on which the company will pay an 8 per cent interest coupon,w as due to mature by yearend. He said this short-term financing equivalent to a bridging loan showed the confidence the companys Board and management had in their belief that Benchmark (Bahamas would be much stronger at the 2010 year-end. Our objectives were to raise $0.5-$1.5 million from the private placement, andw ere quite pleased with it, M r Brown added. And weve only done it for a year, so that gives you a good indiSolid as a rock Benchmark (Bahamas offering to escape negative net worth position at year-end 2009 BISX-listed firm confident 2010 will close in much better shape, after Carmichael Road projects $3.5m-$4m worth valued and listed on balance sheet Raised just two-thirds of $1.5m maximum sought Office/retail complex 70% leased and set for February completion,w ith annual rental income estimated at $500k SEE page 3B The Bahamian financial services industry received a notable boost yesterday after a major internat ional securities/brokerage business announced it had chosen Nassau ahead of the Cayman Islands as the destination in which to consolidate its Caribbean operations. LOM Holdings, the Bermuda headquartered and listed broker, asset manager and financial services provider, said its Cayman operation would close on March 31, 2010, with all client accounts moving either to Bermuda or its Nassau offices at the British Colonial Hiltons Centre of Commerce. After an exhaustive review of our regional operations, we have decided that it is in the best interest of our clients and shareholders to support the entire Caribbean region from one office. Therefore, we have determined that Nassau, Bahamas will be our new regional hub. LOM has had an office in the Bahamas since 2001, said LOM (Bahamas al manager Craig Lines. Uniting our entire Caribbean sales team in once p lace will allow us to more efficiently manage clients throughout the Caribbean, Central America and South America. Beginning on April 1, 2010, all communications will be redirected to Nassau, and any remaining Cayman customers will be serviced out of the Bahamas office until they can be transferred as perc lient requests. All LOMs staff and financial advisors in the Cayman office have been offered the opportunity to relocate to the Bahamas or Bermuda offices. While LOM regrets this move after 15 years of SEE page 2B


By CHESTER ROBARDS Business Reporter crobards@tribunemedia.net THE NATIONAL Insurance Board (NIB m ore than $100 million in government office complex proj ects that will attract investment returns higher than the local investment market can pay, its director saying yesterday that the social security programme has enjoyed significant growth to reserves of $1.6 billion. Algernon Cargill said he and his staff were committed to keeping NIB solvent for years to come, something will require an increase of 2 per cent in cont ributions over the next several y ears from the current 8.8 per c ent to 10.8 per cent, with 1 per c ent rises required to fund both the National Drug Plan and unemployment benefit. As administrator of the n ations social security organisation, NIB must also fight to improve benefits paid to B ahamians and ensure that these benefits keep pace with the cost and challenges or 21 c entury living, said Mr Cargill. NIB paid out $158 million in benefits in 2009, and took in some $160 million in contributions. Mr Cargill added that the newly-implemented unemploy-m ent benefit programme was p art of the effort to meet the n eeds of the changing social situ ation, while the Chronic Disease Prescription Drug Plan ( CDPDP) to be launched later this year is designed to do t he same. The unemployment benefit programme has paid out more than $20 million to 14,000 individuals as of year-end 2009. T he CDPDP will receive $7 million in financing through the medical benefits branch of NIB f or the first phase, which will require no new contributions, as it is a pilot programme d esigned to work out the kinks. Phase two funding will include funding from specified groups, new deductions from the earnings of workers and employers, and reimbursementf rom insurers through coordin ation of benefits for members w ith insurance plans. Let me assure you that we will be using the same investm ent management techniques described heretofore, so that t he plan will not negatively i mpact NIBs portfolio, said Mr Cargill. Your National Insurance c ontributions are very important to all that we do. It allows us to honor industrial claims, ensure that we can pay pen-s ions and make a variety of other compensatory and benefit payments. Mr Cargill said that despite the planned increase in the insurable wage from $400 to $600 per week, only about 40p er cent of workers will be a ffected, yet will receive more benefits for higher contribut ions. Properly supported and e mployed, NIB can rise to the noble calling for which it was e stablished thirty-six years ago, Mr Cargill said. He added that the introduction of the Med-4 form had reduced short-term claims onN IB by 20 per cent. C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS PAGE 2B, FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010 THE TRIBUNE TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM being in Grand Cayman, it is part of a wider review of our strategy regarding overseas offices, offshore costs and, ultimately, reflects the realign ment of the offshore investment environment over the past few years, Mr Lines said. Broker selects Bahamas for consolidation FROM page 1B Insurable wage rise to hit just 40% of workers


By NEIL HARTNELL Tribune Business Editor The Bahamas was unable to cut hotel room rates as deeply as other Caribbean destinations in response to the recession because to have done so would have left the industry mired in deeper unprofitability due to high operating costs, the minister of tourism and aviation said yesterday. Vincent Vanderpool-Wallace told the Bahamas Business Outlook Conference that t his nation had to accept it would be unable to convert any cruise ship passengers to stopover visitors simply because land-based stays in this nation were out of their price range. Visitor per capita spending in the Bahamas was one of the highest in the world when compared to other nations, Mr Vanderpool-Wallace said, adding that while it was very close to the top on this indicator it was also one of the highest operating cost destinations on the plan-et. The main factors influencing these costs were labourand utilities and, as a result of this high operating cost base, the Bahamas had one of the smallest reductions in room rates in the entire r egion in response to the recession. M r Vanderpool-Wallace said these costs meant B ahamian hotels had no choice but to implement relatively minimal discounts, because if they had reduced rates to the level of their competitors they would have fallen into deeper levels of unprofitability. Per capita hotel room costs had grown by a $100 average in the Bahamas in recenty ears, and Mr VanderpoolWallace said this nations rel atively high room rates and operating costs meant it had to pitch for the high-end, premium travel market. The Bahamas, he added, was unable to compete with rival destinations that offered Canadians travelling from Toronto a one-week, all-inclusive stay including airfare for just $400. That is not our business. This is not the business were competing in. We could never compete in that business, Mr Vanderpool-Wallace said. While Canada had been the only growth market for Caribbean tourism in recent times, the minister added that it was also one of the most price sensitive. Mr Vanderpool-Wallace said there were also a large number of people coming on cruise ships to the Bahamas that cant be converted, explaining that while cruise arrivals were up by 15 per cent year-over-year in 2009, this nations hotels could not hope to attract the many passengers enjoying a $199 threeday cruise. Higher spending stopover visitors to the Bahamas declined by more than 10 perc ent in 2009, but there had been a steady increase in those tourist numbers in the four months between September and December 2009, a trend that had continued into January. Mr VanderpoolWallace said March was also looking good, and February not as promising, but pointed out that the shortened booking window made trends very difficult to predict. The minister of tourism and aviation said the Bahamas had an asset utilisation problem in that it had focused on just one destination, Nassau/Paradise Island, to the detriment of all other islands. While stopover visitor numbers to Grand Bahama and the Family Islands had large ly remained stagnant over the past 20 years, only Nassau/Paradise Island had shown a marked increase. This had driven the Ministry of Tourisms quest to brand and differentiate all islands of the Bahamas, Mr Vanderpool-Wallace admit ting that this nations US proximity advantage had been negated because it was more expensive and, in the case of the Family Islands, more time consuming to fly to this nation from New York when com-p ared to European destina tions like Paris, London and Rome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t&2 $WWRUQH\VIRUWKH([HFXWUL[ 5XVW\%HWKHO'ULYH 1DVVDX%DKDPDV cation of what the balance sheet will look like in a year. We dont want to have that money around for too long, paying out on it. When asked whether the BISX-listed company was disappointed at just being able to place two-thirds of the issue, Mr Brown replied: Its a difficult time. Everyones having their challenges. I would not say wed complain. I think weve done OK under the circumstances. We did a private offering, and we got interest coming in to us from private investors. Expressing confidence in the companys property investment, Mr Brown said: We have not taken in anything on the Carmichael Road property. We will not have a valuation on the property until its completed, so were pretty confident that once thats done we will be in pretty good shape on the balance sheet. We would have at least a $3.5-$4m million investment included on a valuation basis. We took the private placement offering on the basis we wanted to ensure the balance sheet was secure until we got an opportunity to do the Carmichael Road project valuation and put it on the balance sheet. Were, as they say, solid as a rock. Mr Brown said the response from potential tenants of the 18,000 square foot Carmichael Road property had been overwhelming. He added that on Wednesday afternoon he had given a proposal to a potential tenant who had met with him inquiring about leasing an 1100 square foot space. I think right now we have about 70 per cent of that project leased, and we should be signing lease agreements within the next 30 days, Mr Brown told Tribune Business, adding that he could not name any tenants apart from the anchor, Bank of the Bahamas International, until these agreements were signed. Benchmark (Bahamas $500,000 in per annum revenue from the project, Mr Brown said, with rates set at around $30 per square foot $23.50 for basic lease, and $6.50 for common area maintenance (CAM and other expenses. The Benchmark (Bahamas Road projects construction was scheduled to be completed by the end of February 2010. While final figures for 2009 were yet to be produced, Mr Brown said the fourth quarter recovery in Commonwealth Banks share price, one of Benchmark (Bahamas holdings, was likely to have a positive impact on the companys balance sheet and income statement. Solid as a rock FROM page 1B VINCENT VANDERPOOL-WALLACE Hotel rate cuts were lowest in Caribbean High costs prevented deep discounts for fear of deep unprofitability, and work against cruise conversion Asset utilisation problem with Family Islands


Tackling the issues facing s mall and medium-sized businesses and, by extension, the wider Bahamian private sector, Mr Rolle hit out at the quality of labour being graduated fromt his nations schools, arguing that too many workers did not understand their obligations to employers, and then wasted the c ompanys time and money in Labour Board complaints after being rightfully dismissed. The woefully inadequate education system is the Achillesh eel of the business community, the Chamber president told the conference, organised by TCL Ltd (The Counsellors We are not getting what we need from the education system, and the business community, are the beneficiaries of the under-performing employeest hat come out of their doors. Its extremely difficult having to spend time before the Labour Board, not because Ive b een a bad business person, but because people do not understand their obligations to their employer. We invest in training, making sure employees are comfortable and give them opportunities. If they dont show up for work, they dont rationalise t hat theyre wrong for that. Mr Rolle said the first response of employees rightfully dismissed in such situations was to run to Mr [Harcourt] Brown, [the director of labour], who rings me and says hes got someone here for me. Ninety-nine point nine per cent of the time I win the argument, but I spend valuable time in front of the Labour Board. There are a good cadre of performers, who are well-educated, understand what their obligations are and live up to it. Its that grouping that really tries our system. Apart from the challenges in accessing the required capital, financing and resources, Mr R olle said small and mediumsized businesses found it difficult to obtain technical expertise from the likes of attorneys, accountants and marketing managers because they charged the same fees to provide them with services as they did larger firms with deeper pockets. The newly-established Chamber Institute, he added, was designed to find a way for s mall businesses to access such professionals at reduced cost, with fees reasonable and proportionate to what their needs are. The Chambers Small and Medium-Sized Enterprise Unit was an attempt to assess what companies needed to survive and be viable. A rguing that the Bahamas was not realising our true potential economically, with the small and medium-sized business sector under developed, Mr Rolle said these companies should be shored up to protect domestic demand in the event an external recession impacted key influences on this nations well-being. Based on the World Banks E ase of Doing Business report, which ranked the Bahamas 68th out of 183 countries, Mr Rolle said it was still too costly, as a percentage of GDP per capita, to start a business in this nation. Urging small businesses to stop seeking government handouts, Mr Rolle added: We n eed to move small and medium-sized enterprises beyond traditional risk and ratio matrixes. Weve been doing that for too long, and its contributing to a dying sector. Deno Moss, a Scotiabank (Bahamas creating a national fund with t wo tiers of shares one purchased by Bahamians, the other by foreigners to provide financing for small and medium-sized businesses. 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Johnson9.959.950.000.9520.64010.56.43% 10.0010.00Premier Real Estate10.0010.000.000.1560.00064.10.00% 52wk-Hi52wk-LowSecuritySymbolLast SaleChangeDaily Vol. 1000.001000.00Fidelity Bank Note 17 (Series A) +FBB17100.000.00 1000.001000.00Fidelity Bank Note 22 (Series B) +FBB22100.000.00 1 000.001000.00Fidelity Bank Note 13 (Series C) +FBB13100.000.00 1 000.001000.00Fidelity Bank Note 15 (Series D) +FBB15100.000.003 52wk Hi 52wk Low Symbol Bid$ Ask$ LastPrice WeeklyVol. EPS$ Div$ P/E Yield FINDEX: CLOSE 000.00 | YTD 00.00% | 2008 -12.31%BISX LISTED & TRADED SECURITIES AS OF: Fidelity Over-The-Counter Securities3 0 May 2013 29 May 2015 W WW.BISXBAHAMAS.COM | TELEPHONE:242-323-2330 | FACSIMILE: 242-323-23201 9 October 2022 Prime + 1.75% P rime + 1.75% 7 %THURSDAY, 14 JANUARY 2010B ISX ALL SHARE INDEX: CLOSE 1,565.41 | CHG -0.10 | %CHG -0.01 | YTD 0.03 | YTD % 0.00BISX LISTED DEBT SECURITIES (Bonds trade on a Percentage Pricing bases)Maturity 19 October 2017 7 % Interest 52wk-Hi 52wk-Low Symbol Bid $ Ask $ Last Price Weekly Vol EPS $ Div $ P/E Yield 14.607.92Bahamas Supermarkets10.0611.0614.00-2.2460.000N/M0.00% 8.006.00Caribbean Crossings (Pref2. 0.540.20RND Holdings0.350.400.350.0010.000256.60.00% 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 MonthsDiv $Yield % 1.43871.3535CFAL Bond Fund1.43876.306.30 2.88692.8266CFAL MSI Preferred Fund2.8869-1.81-1.81 1.50871.4336CFAL Money Market Fund1.50710.085.23 3.32012.9343Royal Fidelity Bahamas G & I Fund3.1168-7.94-7.94 13.240012.6816Royal Fidelity Prime Income Fund13.24004.935.90 103.987393.1999CFAL Global Bond Fund103.98733.413.41 101.725496.4070CFAL Global Equity Fund101.72545.525.52 1.08041.0000FG Financial Preferred Income Fund1.08044.325.26 1.03641.0000FG Financial Growth Fund1.0269-0.59-0.19 1.07421.0000FG Financial Diversified Fund1.07423.564.42 9.57959.1005Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 19.57955.335.33 11.236110.0000Royal Fidelity Bah Int'l Investment Fund Principal Protected TIGRS, Series 211.236112.3612.36 7.71714.8105Royal Fidelity Int'l Fund Equities Sub Fund7.717140.0540.05 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-Dec-09 31-Dec-09TO TRADE CALL: CFAL 242-502-7010 | ROYALFIDELITY 242-356-7764 | FG CAPITAL MARKETS 242-396-4000 | COLONIAL 242-502-752531-Dec-09 31-Dec-09 31-Dec-09 8-Jan-10 31-Dec-09MARKET TERMS Colina Over-The-Counter Securities BISX Listed Mutual Funds31-Oct-09 31-Dec-09 31-Oct-09 NAV Date 31-Dec-09 31-Oct-09 31-Oct-09 7 KH3XEOLFLVKHUHE\DGYLVHGWKDW 5 +21',/28,6( 581' R I .HQW$YHQXH1DVVDX3%R[ LQWHQGWRFKDQJHQDPHWR 5+21',/28,6(%(7+(// ,IWKHUHDUHDQ\REMHFWLRQVWRWKLVFKDQJHRIQDPH'HHG 3ROO\RXPD\ZULWHVXFKREMHFWLRQVWRWKH &KLHI3DVVSRUW 2IFHU31DVVDX%DKDPDVQRODWHUWKDQ W KLUW\GD\VDIWHUWKHGDWHRISXEOLFDWLRQRIWKLVQRWLFH Small businesses dying slow death FROM page 1B


just under one million visitors. Developments were further complicated by the fact that the hotel sector had to enhancet heir incentive programmes in a bid to support operations, Mr Laing said. Hotels across the Bahamas l amented that Revenue Per Available Room (RevPAR w as consistently down last year a s rates were reduced to attract b usiness. Mr Laing said the Governm ent did what was necessary to respond to the extraordinary c ircumstances caused by the global recession, although theB ahamian economy was estimated to have contracted by 5 p er cent in 2009. He added that the Govern ments stabilising social assistance programmes were not sustainable when viewed fromt he public finances perspective. Zhivargo Laing said the i mpact of the late 2008 financial collapse could have been worse effect for the Bahamian economy had the government not quickly enacted its social prog rammes, capital works projects and created the national unem-p loyment benefit. He added that despite the G overnments efforts to min imise the inevitable job losses, the economy contracted by 5 per cent last year and unem ployment was driven up to 14.2 p er cent. Without the Governments i mmediate injection of capital into public works projects, he v entured that unemployment percentages could have hit the 20 per cent range. Mr Laing said the Governments finances took a hit as a result of revenued ecline and increased spending, with revenues contracting by 7 per cent in fiscal year 20082009 compared to fiscal year 2 007-2008. He said government expenditure also increased by 7 per cent, mainly owing to its investment in its social safety net pro-j ects. Deficit M r Laing said that, consequently, the countrys deficits urged from a range between $ 100-$190 million, or about 1.5 t o 3 per cent of the countrys G ross Domestic Product (GDP m illion or 4.9 per cent of GDP in fiscal year 2008-2009. These have been unprecedented times for governmentsa round the world, which have been driven to implement meas ures to support their economies amid the contraction in private sector activity, and they have had varying capacities to achieve this outcome, said Mr Laing. Fortunately for the B ahamas, our low debt-to-GDP ratios have provided us with the fiscal space to incur additional debt in such critical circ umstances. Internationally-recognised credit rating agency, Standard and Poors (S&P reduced this countrys longt erm sovereign credit rating f rom an Ato a BBB+. I hasten to note that despite t he downgrade, our debt is still investment grade. Therefore,t he new rating should not sign ificantly impact our ability to g row, said Mr Laing. H e argued that he worst of the economic decline had p assed, but said the recovery process will be challenging. Although global indicators have in recent months pointedt o a modest recovery, the pace of growth is expected to be rela tively slow compared to recoveries in past recessions, and high levels of unemployment w ill be the norm for some time, said Mr Laing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ahamas % rate of finance illiteracy Eye Doctor, said inept financial acumen had made the Bahamian economy a sinking, rudderless ship, and a dull government as well as private citizens were at the helm. We can no longer look out for financial people to look after our best interests, said Dr Rodgers. He said governments were looking out for their political endeavours, while the financial s ervices sector was only interested in more money. The sectors regulators were listening to the tune of government, but dancing to the tune of the financial sector. Dr Rodgers said statistics have shown that c ountries where children perform well at maths typically have the best economies. And with a national BGCSE exam average of D, and only 15 per cent of graduates pursuing tertiary education, he said Bahamian financial literacy was ina tailspin. Dr Rodgers said the Government needed to take a strong look at the Bahamas tertiary education. He suggested that the resignation of the C ollege of the Bahamas president, Janyne Hodder, should have dealt a sobering blow to those who control the educational system within the political ranks. Dr Rodgers said despite peoples day-to-day financial interactions, there was nou nderstanding of financial information. He lamented that there were limited laws protecting consumers of financial institutions, leading to predatory banking practices. We need to have more competition in the banking sector to bring down the cost of money, he said. Tourism earnings fall 10% to $1.5bn F ROM page 1B F ROM page 1B


C M Y K C M Y K BUSINESS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, JANUARY 15, 2010, PAGE 7B TO DISCUSS STORIES ON THIS PAGE LOG ON TO WWW.TRIBUNE242.COM Addressing the Bahamas Business Outlook Conference, Mr Townend said this nation would increasingly have to look to private-public sector partnerships to finance and develop its infrastructure needs, given that the Government with the need to reduce the national debt and fiscal deficits it was currently incurring would be constrained in the resources it was able to provide. The total cost of infrastructure that needs to be funded in the next few years for the Bahamas is $2.1 billion, Mr Townend told the conference, which was organised by TCL Ltd (The Counsellors He divided this spending, which KPMG estimated would need to be incurred within the next five years, a short to medium-term timeframe, into these infrastructure areas: Education $500 million Healthcare $300 million, including new hospitals Roads $200 million Airports $450 million Sea ports $100 million Prison $100 million Solid waste $50 million Government buildings $200 million Alternative energy $200 million Emphasising the need for the Government to share the infra structure financing/development bur-den via public/private partnerships, with the private sector sharing both the risk and the returns (rewards the KPMG partner said the Governments annual capital expendi ture budget totalled $255 million. Putting this into perspective, Mr Townend said nine to 10 such Budget allocations would be needed to meet the $2.1 billion infrastructure need, placing it outside the five-year timeframe. Our annual capital expenditure budget is $255 million, so it will take 10 years to achieve that [total], he added. Of that $255 million capital expenditure, a lot of that is spent on maintenance, not building new things. Further proof, of any were needed, of why the Government was unable to finance the Bahamas infrastructure needs on its own came from the state of its public finances, Mr Townend suggested. The $2.1 billion infrastructure requirements exceeded the $1.486 billion in total revenues the Government was projected to earn in 2009-2010, while the national debt continued to climb steadily hitting $3.675 billion at the 2009 third quarters end. Mr Townend estimated that the Bahamas national debt-to-GDP r atio had hit 53 per cent at the end of t he 2009 fourth quarter, a major j ump of nine percentage points on the 44 per cent ratio it had reached at 2008 year-end. This, too, was an increase on the 41 per cent, 40 per cent and 39 per cent ratios achieved at year-ends 2007, 2006 and 2005 respectively. Given the Governments determination to reduce the debt-to-GDP ratio, lower the fiscal deficit and get the public finances back on track, as announced by Zhivargo Laing, minister of state for finance, at yesterdays conference, Mr Townends aid public sector financing for infrastructure projects might be in short supply. However, he added: I believe the Bahamas is forging ahead. I think theres a lot of areas where we can improve what were doing with infrastructure. I commend the Government because its looking at all sectors, and looking long-term longer than five years. Mr Townend said it was unusual for governments to look further than five years ahead, the usual duration of the political cycle. The Ingraham administration has accelerated capital spending on public works related projects, viewing them as not only propping up the economy and creating jobs in the shortterm, but also improving the Bahamas capital stock and physical assets, leaving something that will be of long-lasting benefit to future generations. Partnerships And the Government was also s eemingly starting to embrace private-public partnerships, Mr Townend saying that the $409.5 million Lynden Pindling International Airport (LPIA such a partnership, given that the Nassau Airport Development Company (NAD agement of Vancouver Airport Services (YVRAS The upcoming Arawak Cay container port, he added, would be a true public-private partnership a j oint venture between the Governm ent and shipping companies. O ther infrastructure projects underway include the $120 million New Providence Road Improvement Project; the $200 million worth of new government office complexes; and the recently-completed $44 mil lion Nassau Harbour dredge. Other infrastructure projects included the impending Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC tion; the possible privatisation of the Bahamas Electricity Corporation (BEC tion of a new hospital. Describing infrastructure as the glue that binded an economy and society together, and underpinned everything they did, Mr Townend said the term did not just refer to physical assets, such as roads, ports and airports, or utilities such as water, electricity and telecommunications, but also key social services especially education and healthcare. Bahamian schools needed significant attention, Mr Townend, said. This nation had 250 schools, of which 160 were public. Some 17 per cent of the Governments annual Budget, or 5 per cent of GDP, was spent on education with 85 per cent of the budgetary allocation going on recurrent fixed costs. More than 50,000 children were i n the public school system, more t han half of these in primary schools, b ut with 50 per cent of public school BGCSE grades at E or below, compared to 18 per cent of all private school grades, Mr Townend questioned whether the Bahamas was getting value for money from its investment in its human capital infrastructure. Arguing that the Ministry of Education should be focused on learning, not repairing schools, as it rushed to do every summer, Mr Townend said the Bahamas needed to create a world class learning environmenti n its schools through the use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT The UK had implemented such a project, Building Schools for the Future, a billion project covering 3,500 secondary schools, and a KPMG study had shown UK schools rebuilt using a public-private partnership Private Finance Initiative had seen educational attainment improve 44 per cent faster. Suggesting that the Bahamas follow the British governments lead in setting up Infrastructure UK, Mr Townend said: We need an Infrastructure Department in government that deals specifically with infrastructure. I would recommend an Infrastructure Department. We need a complete overhaul of how infrastructure assets are managed and maintained in the Bahamas. We need to look at what underpins these changes we want, because if we do not look at the backbone of the economy, which is infrastructure, change cant happen. A KPMG survey of 16 island s tates including the Bahamas, which c onducted interviews with 40 gove rnment officials, found that 89 per cent of them felt infrastructure quality was average or below average. Some 66 per cent believes infrastructure development efficiency was average or below average, with 60 per cent of projects never or rarely completed on time. Some 64 per cent of projects were never, rarely or only sometimes on budget. Going forward, Mr Townend suggested that apart from creating an Infrastructure Department, the Bahamas needed to develop a post-f ive year strategy for infrastructure; define its needs in this area; and review the Government procure ment process. Government needs Infrastructure Dept to meet $2.1 billion need FROM page 1B