The Grenada newsletter

Material Information

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


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


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

Record Information

Source Institution:
A. & C. Hughes
Holding Location:
A. & C. Hughes
Rights Management:
Copyright A. & C. Hughes. Permission granted to University of Florida to digitize and display this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
Resource Identifier:
24157414 ( OCLC )
sn 91021217 ( LCCN )
F2056.A2 G74 ( lcc )

Full Text

Vol.ue Number 16
For The Week Ending May 19th 1979
7th Year Of Publication - - 214th Issue


The United States Goveinment indicated its willingness to be helpful
to Grenada before Prime Minister Maurice Bishop asserted that he had
been forced to turn to Cuba for assistance.

This is declared in a cable sent to NEWSLETTER on Monday (14th) from
United States Ambassador to Grenada, Mr 'rank V Ortiz, and the
Ambassador said the US Government had instructed the Embassy in
Barbados to issue this statement.

"The US indicated willingness to be helpful in economic assistance
as well as in the security area", the cable said. "We offered to
send an economic team to Grenada to discuss with the new Government
its economic development priorities and requirements. We ma.e those
offers before Mr Bishop asserted that his Government had to turn to
Cuba for arms, aid and advice because Grenada's traditional friends
were not responsive."

The cable referred also to a charge against the United States made
by Prime Minister Bishop in a national broadcast on May 8th.
Mr Bishop said then that his Government has information that the
United States Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) has a plan to
"de-stabilize" the Grenada Government.

Ambassador Ortiz' cable denied this and called Mr Bishop's charges
"unwarranted and without foundation". "Moreover'l, said the

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

Page 2 THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Week Ending 19.5.79

cable,'"it is not correct that the US has been pressuring Grenada or
withholding assistance".

The cable said also, "After seizing power on March 13th, Prime Minister

Bishop pledged his Government's commitment to human rights as well as

early and free elections. Noting that pledge, several of Grenada's

neighbours in the Caribbean recognized the new Government, and the US

Government advised that it was continuing the friendly and co-operative

relations the two countries have enjoyed since 1974."

On Tuesday (15th), both the Grenada "Torchlight" newspaper and the local

representative for Associated Press received cables similar to the one

sent NEWSLETTER by Ambassador Ortiz the day before and, also on Tuesday,

the Grenada Government issued a statement relative to these cables.
According to that statement, the cables sent out by Ambassador Ortiz

"can be seen as a desperate effort by a disgraced and discredited

-man who is trying to save his name."

"Regarding the security assistance which the Ambassador states has

been offered to Grenada", the statement says,, 'the People's

Revolutionary Government (PRG) would like to make it clear that at

no time has the United States responded favourably to Grenada's

public appeal for arms to defend our country against mercenaries."

The statement says the only security assistance the US offered wis

to monitor Mr Gairy's movements and US representatives advised the

PRG that this would be difficult as the usual security personnel

assigned to Mr Gairy as Prime Minister had been withdrawn.

"Indeed", says ehe statement, "since that offer was made several

weeks ago, only one phone call relating to security information

has been received by the Grenada Government. Yet we know that,

during the past two weeks, Gairy, presently resident in San Diego,

had visited Miami in an attempt to recruit mercenaries there.

That information was never relayed to us by Ambassador Ortiz."

With respect to the matter of Un;4d States economic aid', Grenada,
the statement says the offer of a US team to expedite the release

of funds from the Caribbean Development Bank t, Grenada came via
S, continuedd)
_________- ____ *' .'-a yi' _____

Week Bfdin 19.5.79 THE GRENADA NSJ TR Page 3

Mr Kendrick Radix, Grenada's Ambassador to the United States. This
offer came early in May, the statement says, two weeks after

Mr Bishop, in his Good Friday speech, "revealed the lack of economic

assistance being offered by the United States!', and the offer was

discussed by the PRG with the US Embassy on. May 9th.

"We reiterate that, up until the last two weeks", the statement says,

"there had been no concrete offer of economic assistance from United

States Officials, except, for the US$5,000.00 offers mentioned by the

Prime Minister in his Good Friday speech,."

The statement says the PRG believes that Ambassador Ortiz "can only

discredit himself further by continuing his campaign of foolish ahd

inaccurate statements." "We are aware that Ambassador Ortiz will

shortly be leaving his post", the statement concludes. We sincerel

hope. that his successor will work closely with us towards restoring

and improving relations between our two countries and peoples."
(695 words)


A reporter of the Grenada "Torchlight" newspaper has had his

camera seized by the Police. This incident is said to have taken

place yesterday (18th) and a source close to "Torchlight" said today

the cameraa has not yet been. returned.

Investigating an alleged dispute between the Principal of a private

school and the builders of a community centre, the "Torchlight"

reporter, Richard McDonald, went to Fontenoy, some two miles nor
of St.Georges. The school, the Grenada Junior Aca emy, is

located in this area, and the dispute is said to be centered in the

protest of the Principal, Major Fred Cowing,, that the community

centre is being built too close to his establishment.

According to "Torchlight" sources, McDonald was attempting to take

pictures of the school when workers 4.the community centre site

attacked hi, seized his camera an forced him to seek refuge in

the school. These sources say that, shortly after, two armed

members of the Peoples Revolutionary Army (PRAbarruved on the
scene and deandedht Doald give himse u to them. continued
scene and demanded a is r then. (continued)

Pac 4 eekIndflal9.Cfl

McDonald did not comply with this demand bit summoned Police

assistance. It is alleged that, on arrival, in order to deal

with the situation, the policeman had to assure the PRA members
that, if McDonald had taken any photographs,'they would not be

published. The camera,was taken to Police Headquarters and it

is said that the negatives are being checked.
1 ,:. ,.. f*

The Grenada Junior Acadamy is housed in a building which stands on

the edge of a field. The proposed community centre is a

Government project and NEWSLETTER understands that, originally, it

was proposed to erect the building on the far side of the field

from the school. Residents on that side, however, fearing noise

niusance, objected to this and it was decided to build near to the

school instead.

A urce close to Government told NEWSLETTER today (10th) that the

two armed men who were on the scene are not members of the People's

Revolutionary Army (PRA) but belonged;to the People's Revolutionary

Militia (PRM), which is a voluntary unit operating in groups

throughout the State. The source said the incident is being

investigated and it was expected that a statement will be made.
(367 words)


Sixty-one political prisoners have had their cases heard to date (19th),

by the preventive Detention Tribunal, and nine more hearings have been

scheduled for next week.

NEWSLETTER for the week ending May 12th gave details of scheduled

hearings up to Thursday 17th, and subsequent hearings this week are

as follows.

May 18th

M cITij k(
Nobl.e 'Phillip
1-The connections of these are not known.

I :__._ '-. -


Page 4

Week Snding 19.f.S '...


we. SaWino 19.5.79 THE GRBNAAINHWViSA- Page 5

Hearings before the Tribunal1scheduled :fo next-week are ..e

May 21st

Cletus James
Everest Felix.
Thomas Mitchell

May 22nd

Alson Smith
Aldon All-ridge
Clifford Redhead
Bernard Andrew

The connections of these nine detainees are not known.

NEWSLETTER is reliably rinf rmed that, to date,(19th), 74 persons

are being held in preventive'detention.
(124 words)


A law passed by the People's Revolutionary Government on May 18th

makes provision for the compulsdry recognition of trade unions by


This law, "People's Law Number 29 of 1979", sets out the procedure

under which recognition is to be granted, and the first step is that

the trade union must apply in writing to the Minister of Labour,

sending a copy of the application to the employer.

Within seven days after receipt of the application, the Minister

must arrange a poll to determine whether the union has as "memb, s

in good standing" a majority of the employees, and this poll must

be conducted by secret ballot and in the presence of all interested


The Minister then has three days to issue his certificate "to the

union gaining the requisite majority as the bargaining agent", and

all other interested parties must be informed. This decision,

however, in not final. If a trad union or an employer is

dissatisfied with the Minister's decision, an appeal may be made to

the High Court within 14 days"
continued '

__ 1~__ I

__ ___

Page6 THE -GSB3f N=NSf3TBR Week rEnin" i92qg

"The High Court shall hear and determine the matter in a- sLtdary

manner", the law says, "and in determining the matter shall have

the power to affirm or vary the determination of the Minister, or

to order a count or a new count or to make such other order as it

may deem appropriate including dn drder as to costs."

Except in making such an order, the 'High Court has no jurisdiction

in matters relating to the provisions -ofPeople's Law Number 18,

but the order of the High Court in this connection is final.

Penalties for infringement of the provisions of this Act are severe.

Employees who refuse to negotiate with a trade union certified by

the Minister are liable to a fine of BC$5'thousand and/or to two

years imprisonment. In cases such as dismissal or intimidation

because an employee belongs to a trade union, the penalty is EC$3

thousand and/or one year imprison (Ait.
(331 words)


Results of the current Nutmeg Year are falling behind those for the

1977/1978 Year, and it is likely that gross revenue will be down by

some 25%. a

Figures are now available for the first eight months of the Nutmeg

Year of July 1978 to June 1979, and sales made by the Grenada

Cooperative Nutmeg Association (GCNA) over those eight months (July

to February) total EC$7.4 million. Total sales for the Year
e d e dI : I I I
ended une 1978 were BC$16 million and, while a GCNA source advised

NEWSLETTER that there was an increase in sales during March and

pril, it seems likely that gross sales for the current Year will

not exceed EC$12 million.

The problem facing the industry is that of poor production, and the
present situation was anticipated. In its Report for the July 1976

to June 1977 Year, the Nutmeg Board said that that Year recorded the

highest production in the history the Association. Following

-Is high point, a drop was expected but, in its interim Report in

i;December 1977, the Board expressed concern over the rate of production.
V( (continued)


"While a drop below the very heavy production experienced during the

corresponding period last year was fully anticipated in keeping with

the annual cyclical pattern of recent years", the Report said,

"nevertheless, the volume of the shortfall of 41.8% in Nutmegs and

52.3% in Mace as shown is %ooewhat alarming."

Shipments Nutmegs & Mace
July 1978 to February 1979


Value Weight
(EC$) (Ibs)

260,640 629,179.78

212,080 505,413.01

498,880 1,347,987.55

228,060 576,709.36










35,920 104,484.25

43,520 129,165.63

15,680 44,086.48

39,080 105,922.30

7,840 17,396.10

386,693 967,279.00

448,800 1,145,915.33

Nutmegs 533,496 1,330,165.33
Mace 48,190

2,581,549 6,535,399.41 308,230
Total value of Nutmegs shipped

Total Sales, Nutmegs & Mace :- EC$




Low production continued into 1978 but, because of a heavy carry

over of stocks, GCNA was able to meet the demand and the low

production had no considerable effect on the July 1977 to June 1978

Year. Since July 1978, however, there have been insufficient

stocks and, with production continuing at a low'level, GCNA has not


Wee It ding 19.5. 79

Page 7

Page 8 THE GRENADA NEWS!LABR Week Ending 9 .liH

been able to meet the demand with the resulting drop in sales as

compared with last year.

Source close to GCNA told NEWSLETTER that there are indications

that production is now on the increase, and it ig expected that

there will be an increase in sales during the July 1979 to June

1980 Nutmeg Year.
(440 words)


The Grenada Government has received a gift of a fire engine from the

Government of Japan.

During a visit to the State early this month, Mr Katsuhiko Tsunoda,

Councillor in the Japanese Embassy in Caracas, handed the keys of

thip equipment to Prime Minister Maurice Bishop, and the fire

engine was landed at Grenada from the S S "Sun Lina" on May 19th.

Carrying the make of "Hino", this fire engine is a piece of modern

equipment which was brought to the island at a cost of some US$60

thousand. Acquisition of this fire engine is expected to up-

grade the Fire Department considerably, and a technician is to be

sent to Grenada to advise the Department on handling and maintenance.
(1l6 words)


A Cuban Technical Economic Assistance team is now in Grenada for

discussions with the Government.

Arriving in the island on Thursday (17th), this eight-man team

is led by Senor Octavio M Castilla Ferry, Director of the Cuban

State Committee for Economic Collaboration, and the visit to

Grenada is expected to last eight days.

Among subjects for discussion are Health, Road Construction,

Town Planning, Fisheries ars Water, and another team is expected

to visit the island shortly to discuss Agriculture and Education.
(81 words)

Wdgning 19.5.79. THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Page 9


The People's Revolutionary Government (PRG) has retognised the need

for considerable private investment by local as Well as foreign

investors, and therefore considers it would be impossible to develop

Grenadais economy properly without the private sector.

This is stated in the 1978/79 Report of the Council of Management

of the Grenada Chamber of Commerce circulated this week. This

policy of the PRG towards the private sector was set out by the

Minister of Finance, Mr Bernard Coard, at a meeting on April 2nd

with a Chamber delegation, the Report said, and it stated also that

Mr Coard said Government has a mixed economy in mind and intends to

adopt a flexible position as it is proposed to proceed on democratic


The Report said the Council of Management continued to give serious'

consideration to "the growing threats to private enterprise with

particular reference to the indiscriminate acquisition of

agricultural land, and was therefore pleased to note the new

Government's pledge to respect the rights of ownership of property."
Figures published in the Chamber's Report show that the deficit

trading position of the Less Developed Caricom Countries (LDC) with

the More Developed Caricom Countries (MDC) continues to be a drain

on the foreign reserves of the East Caribbean Currency Authority

(ECCA). During the year ending March 31st 1978, the total

deficit with Guyana, Trinidad & Tobago, Jamaica and Barbados was

EC$66.7 million, with the greatest individual deficit being to

Trinidad & Tobago with EC$42.7 million.

East Caribbean Currency Authority
Year Ending March 31st 1978
Sales Purchases Net
To From Position
Bank of Guyana 3,948,000 13,017,000 8,069,000
Central Bank of
Trinidad & Tobago 23,796,000 66,578,000 -42,782,000
Bank of Jamaica 5,208,000 6,904,000 1,696,000
Central Bank of
Barbados 25,511,000 39,741,000 -14,230.000
EC$58,463,000 125,240,000 -66,777,000



The Chamber's Report refers also to the island's visible trade

balance and comments that an increase in the money value is

indicated by both the value of exports and imports. The value

of exports in 1978 was up by nearly 20% over the 1977 figure while

the value of imports increased by just under 13%, making thq visible

trade deficit more than 8% higher in 1978 than in 1977.

Visible Balance Of Trade
1977 1978
Total Domestic Exports EC$37,031,000 BC$44,387,632
Total Re-Exports 1.419,000 1,275,407
Total Exports 38,450,000 45,663,039
Total Imports 84,763000. 95,769.531
Visible Trade Deficit BC$46,313,000 EC$50,106,492

"Our visible trade deficit has been offset by our invisible trade

particularlyy tourism), foreign aid and private remittances from

abroad", the Report says, "but the need for rapid economic growth

is still evident".

The Report comments that, if the private enterprise system is to

be preserved, its benefits must continue to outweigh its

disadvantages, it must maintain its superiority over public

enterprise and it must play its part in economic development,

especially in promoting full employment and more equitable

income distribution.

"Public enterprise can encourage waste, inefficiency and

corruption", the Report says, "on the other hand, the profit

motive and competition in private enterprise tend to keep

wastage at a minimum and provide a stimulus to greater efficiency."

Toe Report says, however, that the unscrupulous businessman

smears the image of private enterprise and the business

community must, therefore, maintain a high standard of ethics

and police itself in order to win the respect of consumers and

the cooperation and loyalty of employees. In this i*y, the

Report says, private enterprise will avoid being hedged around

with restrictions, licences and other controls which often are

Week Ending 19.A479

Week 'Bing 19.5.79 THE GRENADA NEWSLETTER Page il

disincentives to new private investment and can impede economic


The Report of the Council of Management will be presented to the

Annual General Meeting of the Chamber on Thursday 24th May.

Minister of Finance, Mr Bernard Coard, has been invited to address

that meeting.
(583 words)


Windward Islands banana farmers have been advised to get ready to

plant next month and in July. This advice comes from the

Windward Islands Banana Association (WINBAN) which states that, with

proper agronomic practices, bananas planted JUne/July will produce a

crop in April/June next year when prices are expected to be at a

higher level.

According to WINBAN, the dry season in the Windward Islands normally

prevails from February to May and the wet season from July to

December. Bananas should be planted at the end of the dry season

(June/July) WINBAN says, because this ensures sufficient soil

moisture, without water-logging, and the longest period of possible

growth before the onset of the dry season the following year.

WINBAN recommends, in order of preference, the banana varieties of

"Robusta", "Valery" and "Giant Cavendish" and, in areas from sea

level to 1000 feet, planting should be of a density of 800 to 900

"mats" per acre. Above 1000 feet, the density should be reduced

to 700 to 800 "mats" per acre.
(171 words)


During the week ending May 19th, only one cruise liner called at

Grenada. This was the "Carla C" on Wednesday 16th with 801

passengers. 4 words)

A is Hughes
~- --. *May "r

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