Group Title: Official newsletter of the Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Title: Official newsletter
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Title: Official newsletter
Physical Description: Serial
Language: English
Creator: Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Publisher: Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
Place of Publication: London, England
Publication Date: March 2007
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Bibliographic ID: UF00099220
Volume ID: VID00025
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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.The Antigua and Barbuda High Commission
ISSUE No.119 March 2007

H.E. Hon. Baldwin Spencer, Prime Minister
Address on the occasion of the Commemoration of the
200th Anniversary of the Abolition of the British Empire
Atlantic Slave Trade

26th March 2007

Citizens, residents, friends of Antigua and Barbuda

Today our nation commemorates the 200th Anniversary of the abolition of the British Empire Atlantic Slave Trade. The
actual Act to abolish this heinous international crime was passed in the British Parliament on 25th March 1807.

This Act is significant because it marked the beginning of the end of human slavery. The Abolition of the Slave Trade Act
paved the way for the better-known Act that abolished slavery in the British Empire some twenty-six (26) years later.

From the 15th to the 19th Century an estimated fifteen(15) million black Africans were forcibly transported across the
Atlantic Ocean; millions perished from the weight of the chains that bounded them and the wretched and inhumane conditions of the
slave ships.

Those who survived faced yet another brutal fate, as they were auctioned off into slavery on plantations in South America,
Central America, North America, and the Caribbean, including right here in Antigua and Barbuda.

Today, two hundred years later, as a nation of people descended from African slaves, it is important for us to remember the
millions who perished in the "Middle Passage".

It is equally important for us to honour those whose enslaved labour, blood, sweat and tears fuelled the sugar plantations,
enriching the colonial empires of Europe. Today's prosperous nations prosper precisely because of the slave labour of our ancestors.

The Atlantic Slave Trade and slavery itself were two of the most lucrative
inside commercial institutions, resulting in riches and economic prosperity not only to the
slave traders and slave owners, but to whole empires. At the same time these
FSRC overhauls betting and gaming institutions were brutal, oppressive, and resulted in the horrific deaths of millions.
regulations (pages 4 to 5)
Antigua and Barbuda handed The Atlantic Slave Trade uprooted and destroyed whole families and
decisive victory in WTO gambling communities from Africa. Traders trafficked their sons and daughters across the
case (page 5 to 6) Atlantic Ocean in the hulls of ships in some of the most inhumane conditions
known to man.
SOldest property in Antigua to be known to man.
restored (pages 6 to 7)

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A Time to Reflect

Tuesday March 27 to Monday 9th April, marked an
exciting period in the history of Antigua and Barbuda. During
this period, several matches in the current ICC Cricket World
Cup 2007 were played in the state. The crowds came, the
matches were played and the results were recorded for history.

Now that the 2nd stage Super 8 Series matches are
over, there are some questions which are being asked around
the islands "Was the effort worth it? Will we ever see the full
benefits expected from that level of expenditure? How do we
draw out future benefits from all this investment? What lessons
can we learn?"

Let me make a very bold statement. The effort was
well worth our while! Definitely yes. Why do I say this? Prior
to the planning and eventual hosting of this event in Antigua
and Barbuda, the spotlight has never been so brightly focused
on so many aspects of life in the state at the same time. This
was indeed good for us, for we realized that many things which
we were taking our time to develop, or on the other hand has
considered as acceptable were certainly not the case, and
needed to be radically altered sooner rather than later.

Take the case of this aspect of our health service. As
has been pointed out elsewhere the hosting of the ICC event

has left us with a legacy of improved health surveillance.
According to Dr Eldonna Boisson of the Epidemiology Division
of the Caribbean Epidemiology Centre (CAREC), the hosting of
the CWC 2007 in the Region has enhanced the health
surveillance systems in the region. She went on to state that
"health personnel have been trained, additional human
resources provided to countries and CAREC to enhance
surveillance capacity, surveillance systems established, global
disease and outbreak surveillance enhanced, and also
laboratory capacity strengthened".

Dr Boisson also added that a mass gathering
surveillance system (MGSS) was established in the region in
the nine host countries to help detect outbreaks or possible
acts of biological terrorism and enable a daily review of data.
allowing prompt and appropriate public health interventions
and responses. (Source: Antigua Sun Monday 16th April 2007)

A similar case can be made for our security systems,
our social services and other medical services. In particular,
over 300 special security forces from our sister CARICOM
states were in Antigua and Barbuda assisting with the safety of
everyone during the hosting of the Super 8 Series.

I am delighted to observe all of this happenings for it
reinforces my belief that as a Region more of this should be
happening. As someone who has worked across the region I
have heard many complaints of the difficulties associated with
travel across the region. The free movement enjoyed by
citizens of member states of the European Community would
be a dream for any West Indies/Caribbean citizen.

Though there are many calls for answers to questions
about the level of expenditure associated with the activities in
Antigua and Barbuda, there can be no gainsaying that the
hosting of this event would bring worthwhile benefits in the long

Listening to the PM's address to the nation on the
12th April, one cannot but also feel the sense of pride in little
Antigua and Barbuda. It marked the coming to fruition of many
plans and the end of many sleepless nights for the co-
ordinators and members of government. As the Prime Minister
stated "one of the legacies of Antigua and Barbuda hosting the
CWC Super 8 Matches is our ability to achieve despite the
odds and criticisms. It demonstrated that as a people we can
put aside our differences and join forces in achieving what is
best for our nation".

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Continued from coverage

My fellow citizens, friends

Some may question the wisdom
of us commemorating such an
anniversary as the abolition of the Trans-
Atlantic Slave Trade. Some may even
mistake our acts of remembrance and
observance for celebration. But let me
assure the nation of Antigua and
Barbuda that the story of the Trans-
Atlantic Slave Trade deserves to be told
and retold, as it is a part of our history
and as such has shaped our present
reality and gives direction to our future.

My fellow Antiguans and Barbudans,

We remember those who
perished in the Trans-Atlantic Slave
voyages and pay homage to those who
survived and were consequently forced
into slavery so that their story our story
- can be told, and the horrors exposed.

By continuing to expose the
horrors of the slave trade and slavery we
can bring awareness to the social,
cultural and economic impact on our
societies today. Our culture, our
language and who we are as a people
and as a nation is a consequence of a
history of slavery and the slave trade.

To some it is uncomfortable to
speak of such horrors, to others it is a
past they wish to remain covered,
hidden. My fellow citizens, as
descendents of African slaves on whose
slave labour rich nations have been built,
we have absolutely nothing to be
ashamed of, but much to be proud of.

The British Parliamentarian
William Wilberforce, who orchestrated
the passing of the Act, is well-known and
celebrated for his act of humanity in
devoting his life to bringing an end to the
British Slave Trade.
We recognize the important role
he played in this significant point in

history. However, more important is the
role played by the slaves themselves,
those who, through rebellions, personal
acts of resistance and defiance in their
own right were instrumental in forcing the
British Parliament to end the slave trade
two hundred years ago.

Fellow-citizens, to those who
may ask "why should we remember?
Why should this horrific story be told?
Have we not come far?" To this I say, yes
we have come far, but we have a lot
farther to go.

The slave trade ended two
hundred (200) years ago, but it was only
five(5) years ago, in September 2001, at
a United Nations Conference in South
Africa, the World Conference on Racism
and Xenophobia, that slavery was
declared a crime against humanity in a
bid to gain international recognition for
the injustices of the slave trade.

Fellow citizens,

The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade
is the greatest horror in the history of
mankind, yet it has never been
adjudicated. Our forefathers were victims
of this crime against humanity and we
are a part of them. By exposing the
crime we expose the victors, but by
exposing the victors we also expose the
victims. There is no shame in the story of
our forefathers and what they endured as
victims of this crime against humanity.

Ours is a legacy of slavery, but
we take no shame in this. Instead, we
should be inspired by the triumph over
slavery and the slave trade.

Let us take from this day of
remembrance a sense of empowerment.

Let us be inspired by the
struggles of our ancestors, and let us be
empowered to move forward and finish
the job.

Let us be motivated to carry
our nation forward into a future of
greater economic and social prosperity
with renewed vigour it is the way to
honour the courage of our forefathers -
and to create a sense of pride in how
far we have come as a people, as a

My fellowAntiguans and Barbudans,

The slave trade must not be a
forgotten crime against humanity, and
as West Indian, as Afro-Caribbean, it is
our duty to ensure that this does not

In the words of the great CLR
James, The transformation of slaves,
trembling in hundreds before a single
white man, into a people able to
organize themselves and defeat the
most powerful nations of their day, is
one of the great epics of revolutionary
struggle and achievement."

Today we join with our
CARICOM neighbours in
commemorating the bicentenary
anniversary of the abolition of the
Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade.

Indeed my government is
proud to have been a part of the
initiative led by CARICOM Member
States at the United Nations to get the
international community to recognize
this anniversary.

Such international recognition
is important because it provides the
opportunity to carry forward the fight for
justice. With all the modern treaties
and international statutes and
recognition of the slave trade as a
crime against humanity, this crime
remains unpunished; the entities
remain unaccountable for their
participation and profiteering.

I thank the local organizing
Committee under the Chairmanship of

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Dorbrene O'Marde for putting together
an educational and exciting programme
of commemoration.

It is the government's desire for
you to remain as a grouping and
continue to organize educational
activities sensitizing the public on the
importance of remembering the abolition
of trans-atlantic slave trade and slavery

I would also like to commend
Minister Counselor Ms. Janil Greenaway
and her team at the United Nations for
working closely with our CARICOM
Colleagues in their efforts to have today
dedicated in memory of our fallen

My fellow Antiguans and Barbudans,

Progress may be slow in the
fight for justice for the decedents of
slaves, but we must not give up. As a
community of sovereign nations, Antigua
and Barbuda and the other CARICOM
member states consider it necessary for
the international community to become
accountable for this crime against

The commemoration of this
anniversary gives our nation and the
world an opportunity to make progress in
repairing the damage of 400 years of
slavery, so that those who profited from
such a crime can be urged to take
responsibility for rectifying the effects
that remain today.

At the same time the
commemoration of this anniversary
affords us the opportunity to raise the
level of our national consciousness; to
bring about a sense of pride in ourselves
and to let this pride manifest in our
everyday lives.

My fellow Antiguans and
Barbudans, let the occasion of this 200th
anniversary of the Abolition of the Trans-

Atlantic Slave Trade serve as a source of
motivation for us to continue to aspire to
achieve great things, as individuals, as
communities and as a young nation.

Let us take from the stories of
our ancestors and the unknown faces of
the millions who died in the "Middle
Passage" a sense of pride in how far we
have come and how much we have
endured; let us be empowered by their
story to go farther, to strive for greater
success and to be guided by a sense of
morals, purposefulness and diligence.
And may we embrace the future with a
sense of pride, backed by political and
economic empowerment.

us all.

Thank you and may God bless

Financial Services
Regulatory Commission
commences overhaul of the
Interactive Gaming and
Interactive Wagering

The Financial Services
Regulatory Commission announced that
it has commenced the overhaul of the
Interactive Gaming and Interactive
Wagering Regulations which govern the
operations of online gaming companies
licenced by the state.

The review follows a statement
made by Dr. the Honourable L. Errol
Cort, Minister of Finance and the
Economy at a press conference on
February 26, 2007. Substantively the
amendments will seek to reinforce
Antigua and Barbuda's compliance and

commitment to international best
practices and best-known industry

The Minister stated he is in
full support of the initiative, as it will
further solidify Antigua and Barbuda's
unique position amongst e-gaming
jurisdiction's in the development,
regulation and supervision of Internet
gaming operations. The revision will
also take into consideration key areas
where the industry and commercial
dynamics of online gaming have
surpassed the present regulations

It was also noted that the
exercise is two- fold, as the jurisdiction
will take the opportunity to follow
through on its commitment to the
United Kingdom and other participating
nations in a public communique to
develop and implement international
minimum standards for regulating
remote gaming. Ms. Kaye McDonald,
Director of Gaming stated "We will
improve our statutory requirements to
further ensure licensees comply with
international best-practices with regard
to their social responsibilities by further
restricting problem and underage
gaming. We have historically, led the
way with regards to ensuring player
fairness and the prevention of financial
crime and fraud these amendments
will ensure Antigua and Barbuda
remains the world's premiere regulated
interactive gaming jurisdiction in these

The Commission is working
closely with the Antigua and Barbuda
Gaming Association to achieve the key
objectives and will engage other
stakeholders with vested interest in the
sector and its development. A
symposium will be held next week
under the auspices of the Minister of
Finance and the Economy, Dr. the
Honourable. L. Errol Cort to review the
amendments and to provide an
opportunity to consult and discuss the

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revisions. A draft of the regulations will
be posted on the official Government's
website prior to the meeting.

The Commission has engaged
the services of Mr. Frank Catania of
Catania Consulting and associate Dr.
Joseph Kelly to assist in the regulatory
exercise. Mr. Catania has experience as
a gaming regulator, lawmaker and
lawyer with extensive experience in
gaming matters. Mr. Catania was a
former Assistant Attorney General,
Director of New Jersey Division of
Gaming Enforcement and Deputy
Speaker of the New Jersey General
Assembly. As a lawyer, Mr. Catania
focused on compliance and was selected
by "Best Lawyers in America" as a top
legal expert in gaming. His associate Dr.
Joseph Kelly is widely regarded as an
expert on Internet gaming law and his
"Internet Gambling Law" article (26) (1)
Wm. Mitchell Law Rev.) was cited three
times as authority by the United States
National Gambling Impact Study
Commission. Both Mr. Frank Catania
and Dr. Kelly previously assisted with
updating and amending portions of the
gaming regulations and are familiar with
the workings of Antigua and Barbuda's
Interactive Gaming and Wagering

Antigua and Barbuda is not only
one of the first countries to encourage
the development of global trade in
remote gaming and betting services but,
more importantly, to regulate these
services in a comprehensive, fair and
transparent manner.

Antigua handed decisive
victory in WTO gambling

On the 30th March the World
Trade Organisation (WTO) released the
decision of a three-member panel
established to assess the compliance of
the United States with the 2005 ruling by
the trade body against the United States
in the dispute over Internet gambling
brought by the Caribbean country of
Antigua and Barbuda.

Antigua's original triumph in
April 2005 is reaffirmed in this final
report, with the WTO panel decisively
ruling that the US has done nothing to
comply with the original ruling. By
rejecting US arguments that the country
applies its laws against remote gambling
in a non-discriminatory fashion, the WTO
has handed Antigua a resounding
victory, and offers hope to the global
online gambling industry currently under
siege by the US Department of Justice.

Dr. John W. Ashe, Antigua's
Ambassador to the WTO, stated, "This is
a smashing success for Antigua in every
possible way. The report will sweep
away any lingering doubt that Antigua
has obtained a clear and convincing win
over the United States in this matter. It
is now time for the United States to meet
its international trade obligations to
Antigua and work with us in a
constructive manner to resolve this

Featuring prominently in the
WTO's new decision was the passage of
the Unlawful Internet Gambling
Enforcement Act (UIGEA) a baldly
protectionist measure to stamp out non-
domestic supply of remote gambling
services and the high-profile
prosecutions of a number of foreign
service providers in recent months.

Following the 2005 decision of

the WTO's appeals body, the United
States had asserted that it had only to
clarify a "narrow" point of US law
regarding horse racing in order to
come into compliance with the ruling.
Today's decision, while also noting that
the United States had failed to provide
any clarification at all on the horse
racing issue, pointed out that Antigua
had demonstrated that a "flourishing
remote account wagering industry"
exists in the United States, despite US
claims that it prohibited all remote
gambling throughout the country.
Critically as well, the panel took note of
the fact that US law does not prohibit
remote gaming that occurs solely
within the borders of a particular state
- an exemption which was confirmed in
the UIGEA.

"We are extremely pleased by
this most positive report of the panel,"
announced The Honourable L. Errol
Cort, Minister of Finance and the
Economy for Antigua. "It vindicates all
that we have been saying for years
about the discriminatory trade
practices of the United States in this
area, and we look forward to the United
States opening its markets on a fair
and balanced basis as the WTO
agreements and the international
community require."

Kaye McDonald, Antigua's
Director of Gaming, expressed her
relief at the decision, "The principles in
this well-crafted opinion will be clear to
everyone. This really is a landmark
day for our country and I simply could
not be more pleased."

Although the United States
may appeal this latest finding back to
the appeals body of the WTO, the head
of Antigua's legal team, Mark Mendel,
believes that the chances of reversal
are remote. "The panel's logic is
impeccable and the law and facts are
just as much in our favour as they
could possibly be. The United States

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on one hand prohibits competition in
remote gambling from Antigua while on
the other promoting and protecting a
massive domestic industry. If the WTO
agreements apply under any scenario,
they apply here."

We are a small, twin-island
nation in the Caribbean Sea, one of the

smallest WTO members, with a
population of only about 80,000. We
have dedicated significant resources
since the early 1990s in an attempt to
diversify our economy with a closely
regulated and supervised cross-border
gaming industry. Despite having offered
on many occasions to work with US
officials on a cooperative basis to ensure

the safety and fairness of the Antiguan
services offered to American
consumers, Antigua's efforts have
been consistently rebuffed, with US
officials opting instead to embark on an
aggressive assault on the offshore
provision of gaming services.

UN Ambassador Dr. John W. Ashe
signs the Convention on the Rights of
Persons with Disability and its Optional
Protocol at the signing ceremony in the
United Nations General Assembly Hall.
Looking on are Mr. Leslie Emanuel of
Disabled Peoples' International;
Ambassador Conrod Hunte, Deputy
Permanent Representative to the UN;
and Ms. Gillian Joseph, First Secretary in
the country's Permanent Mission to the
United Nations.

Island's oldest property to
be restored back to its
former glory

Work has now started to
restore Hodges Bay House in Hodges
Bay which is believed to be the oldest
occupied house on the island. The
house which was originally built in 1690
is now being sensitively restored back to
its former glory and will form part of a
new residential and boutique hotel
development called 'Elle Antigua'.

Situated on Hodges Bay Road,
the Hodges Bay House was built by its
owner, the British Commander Hodge,
who ran a sugar and cotton plantation on
the estate. Built from bricks and stones,
originally used as ballast in the ships that
arrived frequently from England, the

building retains some of its original
features. These include a giant 17th
century open hearth fireplace (which
was large enough to roast a whole cow)
in an original room known as 'The
Battery', and the mountings steps that
were used to climb onto a horse drawn
carriage. The Mill itself has been
incorporated into the reception area of
the nearby Sunsail Colonna Hotel.

The British architects Wm
Saunders will be responsible for
ensuring these original aspects remain
intact and in deed become a feature of
the new boutique hotel, alongside other
historical artefacts found on the site.

Agnes Meeker, President of the
Museum of Antigua and Barbuda, is
delighted the house is being renovated
after many years of neglect. She says

"Any restoration of any historical
building is to be commended and
treasured. Too many have been lost
over the years in Antigua with our
Forts, Estate Houses, and in our
Capital of St. Johns, due to lack of
foresight. We are playing 'catch up' in
this department with islands such as
Barbados, St. Kitts and Jamaica, all of
whom, have done a far better job of
preserving their historical past."

The Hodges Bay Estate,
originally consisting of 200 acres, has
been used for a variety of purposes
over the years including the farming of
tobacco, sugar and cotton and for
cattle rearing. It was rebuilt by Maybert
and Dalmer Dew in 1939 who kept the
original widened doorways which were
built to allow passage for the hooped
crinoline skirts of the time.

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The home was last resided in
by the dentist Dr M Francis who vacated
it six years ago.

The Estate was bought by local
company Boutique Hotel Ltd. Directors
Lanny Smikle and Linda Hillaire plan to
renovate the building and turn it into a
five star boutique hotel with 22 luxury
residences in the grounds leading down
to the sea. The freehold properties will
be built in a colonial style with a modern
twist They will include two bedroom
waterfront cottages with decked
verandas and plunge pools, romantic
two bedroom country garden cottages
and contemporary two and three
bedroom townhouses.

The hotel and residences will
have a 24 hour butler service, with an
emphasis on providing 'a home from
home' experience. There will be a health
and beauty spa, and fine dining
restaurant that will be open to local

The properties will be sold on a
buy-to-let basis with owners guaranteed
a minimum 6% p.a return on their
investment for two years, with six weeks
usage per year.

Prices for a 2 bed country
garden cottage (1520 sq.ft) start at
US$628,748, a 3 bed town house (2582
sq. ft) start at US$601,085 and a 2 bed
waterfront cottage (2744 sq. ft) start at
US$1,156,151. All prices include fixtures
and furnishings.

Elle Antigua is due for
completion by November 2008.

S(Right, top to bottom)
Scenes of Cricket WorldI
Cup at the Sir Vivian
Richards Stadium
in Antigua



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r; =r~~C. ..... ...... I

Continued from page 2

Here is just a quick list of some
of the present benefits which should last
for some time to come:-
A new Sir Vivian Richards
Multi Purpose Stadium
Expansion of the
departure lounge at the
VCB Airport
Expansion of the baggage
claims area
Street lighting along the
Sir Sydney Walling and
Sir George Walter
Improved roads as a
commencement of a
comprehensive road
Improvements to the
airport tarmac and runway
Extension of the runway
240 metres westwards
Completion of the parallel
taxi-way and linking it to
the existing runway
Widening of some of the
sidewalks in the city
The cleaning up of the city
and beautification of many
of its buildings
More awareness of
Antigua and Barbuda
Transfer of much needed
security/policing skills to
the local unit
The creation of CARICOM
Single Domestic Space

It is now very important that we
maximise these assets and enhance the
immediate returns of the above benefits
well into the future. The new Sir Vivian
Richards Stadium must be maintained in
excellent condition and to full use hosting
many more local, regional and
internationals events in
the coming months and

One very
good lesson which
should be learned from
this is the detail
required for
development, the co-
ordination between
various branches of
government and the
many publics needed
to host major events. A "
perfect example of ;'.. L'
what to avoid is the F
APUA/PWD issue and
high additional cost
associated with the
APUA Golden Grove
Water Mains project.
Proper co-ordination
will ensure and
preserve the
functionality and -
esthetics of the road --
surface of newly
refurbished highways.

In spite of the "
above commendations "
must be extended to "'
the Ministers of
Government, the
manager of CWC
Antigua and his team,
the greeters, the
volunteers and in fact
the entire team who
worked so hard to make the hosting of
the Super 8 Series of matches possible.
May we likewise rise to the occasion
each and every time that it is required in
the future. May our nation continue to

grow with God's help and its citizens
increase in national pride as the state

Dr Carl Roberts
High Commissioner

J- ru31~~~

(Above) Further
scenes of Cricket world
Cup in Antigua and

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