By AVA TURNQUEST Tribune Staff Reporter email@example.com HOUSING Minister Ken neth Russell confirmed that $ 7 million was borrowed from the National Insurance Board without going through thep roper procedures under the previous Progressive Liberal Party administration. D rawing similarities to the Ministry of Housings relationship with the Bahamas Mortgage Corporation, Mr Russell said the unusual transfer fuelled recommendations to remove the board from Housings portfolio, a decision implemented in 2008. A (report $7 million was borrowed from the National Insurance Board without going through the proper procedure, because the Minister of Housing wasthe Minister of National Insurance, Mr Russell said. It was discovered that there was a lot of room for t he same thing to happen between Housing and the Mortgage Corporation. U nderscoring the impor tance of checks and bal ances, Mr Russell reaffirmed h is position that the Bahamas Mortgage Corporation should be removed from the Ministry of Housings portfolio. While Mr Russell made it clear that he was not suggesting that the following scenario occurred, he used it as an illustration of what could pos sibly happen under the current set up. For example, he said, the Housing minister decides to put Jane in a home, Jane goes through the Mortgage Corporation, she is not qualified but the same minister is the minister for the Mortgage Corporation and the minister PLPministrys $7m transfer N ASSA U AND BAHAMA ISLANDS LEADING NEWSPAPER Volume: 108 No.17FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011 PRICE 75 (Abaco and Grand Bahama $1.25 WEATHER SUN & A SHOWER HIGH 84F LOW 72F Pr ocedur es not f ollo wed o ver NIBcash TRY OUR DOVE RASPBERRY McFLURRY The Tribune THEPEOPLESPAPER BIGGESTANDBEST LATESTNEWSONWWW.TRIBUNE242.COM im lovin it INSIDETODAY G G I I F F T T G G U U I I D D E E S S F F O O R R C C H H R R I I S S T T M M A A S S DOUBLE PULLOUT SPECIAL NEWS SPORT FASHION MOVIES TV MUSIC ONSALEEVERYSATURDAY C C O O U U P P O O N N S S T T O O S S A A V V E E U U P P T T O O $ $ 3 3 0 0 0 0 By AVA TURNQUEST Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org THE Department of Local Government is working fever ishly to ensure independent services are operational in Mangrove Cay by January 1. State Minister for Local Government Byran Woodside confirmed officials were in the process of installing the full machinery of central govern ment by selecting a Family Island administrator and estab lishing fiscal independence. Residents protested the removal of former administrator Gilbert Kemp outside the Local Government office in June. By LAMECH JOHNSON email@example.com C ONCERN was raised in a Magistrates Court yesterday over the security of the $1 million worth of cocaine that was seized during a drug bust by police a few days ago in Freeport. D uring the arraignment of Ronald Joseph, 27, and Aline Pierre, 24, in connection with the seizure, defence attorney Dion Smith raised a point about how secure the drugs w ould be in Grand Bahama u ntil trial next April. He said that despite the convenience of hearing them atter before Magistrates C ourt in Grand Bahama where the witnesses are, he p ointed out that most drug By SANCHESKA BROWN Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org PRIDE Estates Three was officially opened yesterday, the fifth government subdivi sion to be opened and com pleted under the Ingraham administration. Housing Minister Kenneth Russell said this subdivision is in keeping with the Governments commitment to reduce the presence of unregulated communities in the Bahamas. According to Mr Russell, the Ministry of Housing has By KHRISNA VIRGIL email@example.com A PROPERTY owner claims Jose Cartellone Con-s truction Company owes her a lmost $90,000 in damages and materials. According to a statement o f claim filed in the Supreme Court, Olga Smith alleges that the company contracted toc omplete the governments r oad works breeched a legal contract almost two years ago. Under the agreement, the Argentina based company was allowed by Ms Smith to extract fill from a large pit on eight acres of land in the area WILL$1M DRUGHAUL BESECURE? CONSTRUCTION C OMP ANY F A CESLAWSUIT PRIDE ESTATES OPENS LATEST SUBDIVISION NEW YEARS DAY DEADLINE FOR MANGROVE CAY S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 1 1 1 1 S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 1 1 1 1 S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 1 1 1 1 S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 2 2 S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 1 1 1 1 EXCLUSIVE JUNIOR JUNKAN OO TAKES OVERTHESTREETS INFABULOUScolours and fabulous outfits, youngsters took to Bay St last night for Junior Junkanoo. For more pictures, see pages 8 and 9. Photo: Felip Major /Tribune Staff
LOCAL NEWS PAGE 2, FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011 THE TRIBUNE a lready constructed 480 houses and sold 237 serviced lots in this current term, with ana dditional 180 houses now u nder construction in New Providence, Grand Bahama and Abaco. H e said: I am pleased to report that we have not only met our goal to construct 600h omes, but we have surpassed it. We have estimated that $63 million is needed to completew hat we have planned and we will continue to move forward ever increasing our numbers until either the money runso ut or my position expired. Mr Russell said the development of the 27-acre PrideE states Three plot and Fire Trial Gardens will cost around $17.6 million of which $ 7.9 million has already been spent. We have completed in Pride Estates 110 homes and1 6 are under construction. We a re also in the process of regularizing a number of squatters in this subdivision. We have also provided jobs for 52 contractors and their workers, he said. We are pleased that we were able to provide homes for Bahamians while at the same time contributing to thee conomic advancement of o ur country. These threebedroom, two-bath, and two-b edroom, one-bath homes range from $83,000 to $135,000. In addition to the homes, Mr Russell said the governm ent is also building a childrens park, a basketball court, a tennis court and maintaining a public opens pace with a pond. T he Housing Minister said a similar exercise is under way in Fire Trail Gardens. A groundbreaking ceremony is being held for 25 houses now under construct ion on this 35-acre site with 20.9 acres being built on and 14.3 being slated for lots. Additionally efforts areu nderway for the regularizat ion of 40 to 50 squatters who took up residence on thel and. The official opening of the Pride Estates comes two days after The Tribune learned that 12 homes in six government s ubdivisions are being occupied without mortgages. According to Tribune sources, the homes are locate d in Sunset Subdivision, 5; D ignity Gardens, 2; Pride Estates I, 2; Hope Gardens, 1; Jubilee Gardens, 1; and East Coral Estates, 1. The keys to eight of the homes were given out in 2006, two i n 2004, and one in 2003 and 2007. Sandra Storr, acting managing director at the BahamasM ortgage Corporation ( BMC), said both front and back-end mortgage lendingg uidelines have since been tightened to guard against further mismanagement. f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e Pride Estates opens latest subdivision M INISTER FOR HOUSING K enneth Russell MP, left, joins others at the groundbreaking ceremony. Photo: Felip Major /Tribune Staff
By LAMECH JOHNSON l firstname.lastname@example.org AN APPEAL filed by a r eligious conference concerning a $400,000 trust fund left by the widow of a former church minister was dismissed yesterday. The appeal sought full r ights over the Rev WJ Smith T rust Fund for the Bahamas/ Turks and Caicos Islands District of the Methodist Churchi n the Caribbean and the A mericas. It was denied by Court of Appeal president Justice Ani ta Allen on the basis that the 1987 will of the late Florence Smith indicated that trust was t o benefit all members of the conference including the trustees of her home church, Trinity Methodist Church. The ruling said: . . I agree with the conclusion of the Chief Justice, which was based on the language used in thew ill itself and the extrinsic evidence, which revealed the fact that Mrs Smiths own home church of 30 years would be excluded if the appellants case were to succeed. That is, when the surr ounding circumstances known to the testatrix at the date of the making of the willa re looked at, it is evident that t he testatrixs intention was to benefit all Methodists in the Bahamas through the further ance of its work and purpose. Chief Justice Sir Michael Barnett made his ruling onA ugust 6, 2010 when the mat ter was first brought before the Supreme Court. Attorneys Anthony Thomp son, Glenwood Rolle and Maurice Glinton, on behalf of the plaintiffs, appealed the Chief Justices ruling on the groundst hat the judge digressed in finding that the intention of the Will was to benefit all Methodist churches in the Bahamas and not the conference as sole beneficiaries, among six other g rounds for appeal. T he story behind the appeal begins in 1967, when the Methodist Church in theB ahamas joined the Methodist C hurch of the Caribbean and the Americas (MCCA ferences, departing from the English Methodist church. Rev WJ Smith was a minis ter of the MCCA and when h is widow Florence Smith died in November 1993, she left a will dated September 3, 1987 which established a trust i n the name of her husband. A rift developed in the MCCA and three months b efore Florence Smiths death, the new Methodist Church of the Bahamas Con-f erence was established by Act of Parliament. The Act allowed the new conference, along with the trustees of Trinity Methodist Church (who joined it all assets previously belonging to t he Bahamas District. The will was probated in February 1994, and the pro c eeds of the trust fund, amounting to $418,789.88, were paid to the trustees. The BTC-MCCA conference was not made aware of the trust until 2008, leading to the plaintiffs filing an action in the Supreme Court in 2009,t o declare that on the construction of the will, the monies were for the sole benefit of the BTC-MCCA. Justice Allen ordered that each party pay its own costs. LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011, PAGE 3 rff tbf bnt B y AVA TURNQUEST T ribune Staff Reporter email@example.com BISHOP Simeon Hall has set a date for his retirement from pastoral duties after 30y ears at the helm of New C ovenant Baptist Church. The veteran anti-crime and human rights activist said he plans to continue his ministry after he steps down from hisp ost as senior pastor in Octob er next year. T he move had been postp oned for two years, Bishop H all said, as a result of financ ial challenges stemming from the CLICO debacle. Ive been preaching for 45 years. Id hoped to retire two years ago but I was a part oft he CLICO plan. [NCBC] had an annuity there, a retirement financial plan, but that debacle threw my retirement off, he said. I can only imagine other persons who have been affected by that i ncident who are perhaps in a wkward positions. As a past or, I had something to fall b ack on. What about those who had no recourse? I can only imagine the elderly that have been affected by that. It seems that both gov-e rnments, both political parties fell asleep at the wheel. Bishop Hall said he will officially announce his retirement, and his three successors, at Sundays 11am service. The three pastors chosen t o serve in his stead will train u nder him for the next year t o ensure a smooth transition. R eflecting on memorable campaigns, Bishop Hall said he hopes his church will continue to develop its missionary work. B ishop Hall has preached at 11 conventions held by the Progressive Liberal Party and four held by the Free National Movement. Sometimes it has stirred some misgivings on either side, b ut I believe it was the right t hing to do at the time, he said. I want to make it clear t hat Im retiring from pastoring but I will preach until I die thats my calling. The day-to-day burden of pastoring is what I want tor elease and just do some other things, maybe Ill learn to play golf, but after 30 years of this you begin to get tired. As chairman of the last Crime Commission, Bishop Hall became aware of how s erious the countrys crime p roblem has become, and s aid he will continue to speak o ut on this issue. Like any pastor, you carry vicariously on behalf of others the burden of crime, and as pastors we have to keep hopea live and believe that tomorrow is going to be better. We have to keep that vertical line straight between us and God Almighty, once we do that the horizontal line falls in place. By SANCHESKA BROWN Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org POLICE continue to comb area of Cable Beach where human remains were discovered on Wednesday, sourcesc lose to the investigation say. B aha Mar workers were shocked after they unexpecte dly unearthed the bones duri ng routine road works. Superintendent Stephen D ean said police are still in the preliminary stages of the i nvestigation. I can confirm we found a h uman hand and it appears t he hand has been there for quite some time. We are doing our police work and we will update the p ress when we know more, he said. A police source said officers have been digging in the a rea where the hand was found, looking for other body parts. T he hand was discovered Wednesday afternoon near Superclubs Breezes resort, coincidentally close to the former residence of the serial killing mother-son team, the Kimes. The discovery has sparked speculation that the remainsc ould belong to a victim of m urderers Sante Kimes and her son, Kenneth. T he duo are presently servi ng a life without parole sentence in a California prison o n several counts of murder. In 1998, the mother and son m urdered businessman David K azin in Las Vegas after he e xposed Sante Kimes loan fraud. That same year, they also murdered New York socialite Irene Silverman while attempting to steal her Manhattan mansion. In 1996, they murdered banker Syed Bilal Ahmed in their Cable Beach home. A ccording to testimony f rom Kenneth Kimes, the banker had flown to Nassau f rom the Caymans to investig ate irregularities in a bank account belonging to the late K enneth Kimes Sr Santes partner and Kenneth Jrs f ather. H e said he and his mother d rugged the banker and drowned him in their bathtub before throwing his body in the sea. However, neighbours of the Kimes were convinced the body was buried on the site, possibly under the patio of their Cable Beach home. I n July of 2004, police b egan digging at the Kimes home and the surrounding a rea, looking for the body of t he missing banker. However, the search was s uspended after Kenneth testified that he and his mother d umped the body at sea. S yed Bilal Ahmeds body h as never been found. BISHOP ANNOUNCES HE WILL STEP DOWN FROM PASTORAL DUTIES NEXT OCTOBER Search for remains after human hand found APPEAL OVER $400,000 TRUST FUND DISMISSED T HESCENE n ear Superclubs Breezes w here the bones were f ound.
EDITOR, The Tribune. THE annual National Trust Jollification was, I believe, intended to be a family affair and the advent to a festive Christmas season. In recent years, it has become anything but. The events of Sunday, November 20, clearly demonstrate that it has become a dunk fest for a growing group of social misfits. I have attend ed too many events large and small, in too many countries to list here, but suffice it to say none of those events found it necessary to dispense alcoholic beverages to be successful. I have witnessed over the years a steady decline in attendance by the members of the Trust and the older generation who no longer find it a pleasant outing for the very reasons witnessed on Sunday the 20th. I have heard from some of the exhibitors themselves who are rethinking their participation. The liquor distributors do not need this venue to promote their products. I am told that controls are to be in place to prevent distribution to minors but there is no way to control friends from passing it on. It is not just the minors who are at fault, those who should have more sense, but obvious ly do not, also need to share some of the blame. Not only do they over indulge but then proceed to drive, creating potential for more disaster. I do not know what the Trust will do going forward, but I believe the time for the loose dispensing of alcohol at public outdoor events, drinking and driving and openly displaying alcohol on the streets has run its course. It is time to become a more responsible society. I hope those with the power to do something about this will take the necessary steps to curtail this unnecessary activity. NO LONGER A JOLLIFICATION SUPPORTER Nassau, November 22, 2011. EDITOR, The Tribune. IT HAS been approximately 14 weeks since the commencement of the government initiated Job Creation Programme. For the first time on such a large scale, the government decided to stimulate employment of young persons with the involvement of the private sector. This is a move away from the past established practice (of both the PLP and FNM administrations) of cramming these groups of persons within the public (Public Service) sector. The government must be commended for endeavouring to change the status quo when it comes to hiring young unemployed people en masse. There are, however, three carry-overs from the former method of engagement of these persons. Let us for arguments sake, accept that the recent change has initiated a period of transition, which is and will be taking place for a not too long period hereafter. There should be no doubt in the Bahamian publics mind that the primary purpose ofh iring young Bahamians is an honourable one. Whenever there is a breakdown or fail ure in the economy of a democratic society, to the extent that the environment does not facilitate job creation and or expansion, then it is incumbent upon any responsible government to take necessary alternative action. This action must be without fear or favouritism. Let us now consider the fol lowing three factors relative to the hiring practice that have not changed with the newly introduced programme: 1 ) Consciously or otherwise, t he programme is still being introduced just prior to a gen eral election. This has been the practice for so long, so v ery long that the only sur prise most Bahamians will have is if it fails to be introduced during the approach to an election. We must ask the question: is there a legitimate reason for such unrelenting consistency practised in hiring by both governing parties every time a general election is p ending? 2 ) As in the past, persons to be hired under a Job Creation/Relief Workers programme must in most instances be recommended by a politician. In such situation the chances are that the MPs supporter or a member of his/herf amily would be given priority over others, some of whom may be more desperate. This type of bias would prevail on both sides of the political divide. While this method of getting persons into the programme may appear fair, it is grossly unfair to many well deserving young Bahamians. Therefore, w e can conclude that allotting x number of spaces to each MP does not engender fairness in the process. In this post-modern era within The Bahamas, are we to believe that the Department of Public Service is incapable of initiating the application process and coordinating such a programme? Is it such a complicated matter to be put in place? On the other hand we must also ask: what value does the involvement of the politi cian bring to the issue. 3) Payment of wages for these persons hired under the programme will be made by the government. This is an accept able feature of the programme, as there is no departure from the remuneration process for group of persons employed under the direction/auspices of the government. Under the current job cre ation programme there are numerous unofficial reports by employers of the following: attitude of some workers; attendance and punctuality; lack of willingness to learn; and some general behavioral issues. Persons who are frequently absent from the workplace without legitimate excuse still receive a full weeks wages. The question is whether therei s an effective system of check and balances in place? Further, is there an effective reporting system in place for discipline or dismissal of persons for misbehaviour or misfits? There appears to be a serious disconnect, between the government representatives and the employers and it leaves one to wonder whether any input from the employers were sought prior to commencement of the programme. There are complaints of lack of information sharing regarding the rules, policy and standard operating procedures in the programme. Further consideration by the government could have included those hundreds and maybe thousands of homeowners who stand to lose their homes. They could have been considered a cohort to benefit from the programme. The persons affected could have been asked to secure proof of their delinquent status from the bank(s been done then thereafter they could have been given opportunity for employment under the programme. They could then seek some grace period from the banks while endeav-o uring to pay if only the interest on their accounts. After all these weeks since the programme has been in place, the public (whose funds are paying the wages) should be given an update status report. We need to know whether the programme is functioning as intended or if it is serving some other purpose. Maybe this would be like the programmes of the past, where the public would not be given the privilege of seeing nor hearing a report. If this programme was a well thought out a nd planned one, then a major c omponent should be that of evaluation. This can take place by way of interim assessments as well as a final one at the end o f the programme. Would it be wise for us to hold our breath while waiting for a comprehensive progress report? MICHAEL E TURNER Nassau, December 1, 2011. EDITORIAL/LETTERS TO THE EDITOR P AGE 4, FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011 THE TRIBUNE The Tribune Limited NULLIUS ADDICTUS JURARE IN VERBA MAGISTRI Being Bound to Swear to The Dogmas of No Master LEON E. H. DUPUCH, Publisher/Editor 1903-1914 SIR ETIENNE DUPUCH, Kt., O.B.E., K.M., K.C.S.G., (Hon. Publisher/Editor 1919-1972 Contributing Editor 1972-1991 EILEEN DUPUCH CARRON, C.M.G., M.S., B.A., LL.B. Publisher/Editor 1972Published Daily Monday to Saturday Shirley Street, P.O. Box N-3207, Nassau, Bahamas I nsurance Management Building., P.O. F-485, Freeport, Grand Bahama TELEPHONES S witchboard (News, Circulation and Advertising) 322-1986 AN Associated Press story from Genev a reported that Liberia and Senegal have p ledged to reform their laws so that w omen can confer citizenship on their children. T he West African nations are currently among at least 30 countries, AP reported, that let only fathers pass their citizenshipt o children from marriages with a foreigner. Among those 30 countries are the Bahamas, Iran, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. The UN refugee agency said that the discrimination against women has contributed to the estimated 12 million state l ess people around the world. Liberia and Senegal made the pledge Thursday at a ministerial meeting in Gene-v a marking the 50th anniversary of the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, the AP reported. US Secr etary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton u rged diplomats Wednesday to amend discriminatory citizenship rules. This is what the government of Hubert I ngraham tried to do by referendum in February 2002, but failed. In our opinion, Bahamians were duped when the referend um process was deliberately hijacked by P LP politicians. The Ingraham administration not only lost the referendum, but a f ew months later also lost the government. A nd so today, the socially unenlight ened Bahamas heads the list in APs international report of countries that are noto r ious in their discrimination against w omen. To avoid marriages of convenience, it is the policy of the FNM government to grant spousal residence on marriage with the right to work, but not give citizenship until after a five-year waiting period to m ake certain that the marriage is sound this applies to the foreign spouses of both men and women. Before this a foreign woman got automatic status on marriage t o a Bahamian man. Not so a foreign man married to a Bahamian woman. The tragedy of this second state was t hat politicians used this at election time to control the vote of the Bahamian woman. If these women were unlucky enough tob e out of political favour, their foreign spouses stayed at home doing the household chores, while their wives went to w ork. Some even had to leave the country b ecause they could not get residency. Many Bahamian women have many sad stories to tell as marriages not stronge nough to bear the injustice, failed. Under the FNM, the male partner no longer has to stay at home, he is granted a spousal permit to work and support his family. When the question came up in the House of Assembly in 2002 the PLP agreed that Bahamian men and women should be equal, a nd should both be able to confer nationali ty on their spouses and their children. In o ther words in the House of Assembly the PLP voted for that item in the referendum. A fter all when history is written they did not want to be seen to be on the wrong side of the fence. However, the most incrediblet hing happened. When the question went to the people, the PLP urged them to vote against it. It was said at the time that the PLP could not bear the thought of history recording that it was Hubert Alexander Ingraham who gave Bahamian women the same rights as Bahamian men. E ven some of the clergy got into the act suggesting that maybe the electorate needed more time to think about the mat-t er. Catholic Archbishop, the late Lawrence Burke, refusing to be caught up in the political football scoffed at t he thought. He wondered just how much t ime a person needed to decide that a Bahamian woman should have the same rights as a Bahamian man. T he scandal was that many too many Bahamian women put their politics before their rights and voted against the r eferendum. As time passed many lived to r egret it. Over the years when a few came to us with their sad tale involving either t hemselves or their daughters, before e ngaging in discussion we would ask how they voted on the referendum. Their answer usually closed the conversationb efore it could get started. T he night before the referendum went to the vote, we got a call from one of the Family Islands. The caller told us that a rumour was being spread that if women were given equal rights with men, they would marry Haitians, and Jamaicans and t ake over the Bahamas. All sorts of bogey men were pulled out of closets to play on the ignorance of Bahamians both men and women. T he question had to go to a referendum to amend the Bahamas constitution. However, in many Caribbean islands the c onstitution can be amended by the legis lature. Neither is a referendum required to amend the US constitution only theirS enate, House of Representatives and a certain percentage of their State Legislatures must agreed to do so. A nd so a clause put into our constitut ion by its drafters to protect the people from ruthless politicians failed them when the people let the politicians trick themi nto surrendering their rights. And so today on this issue alone the Bahamas is shamefully and wrongfully classified with Muslim states states that believe in keeping their women hidden at the back of the class. Update needed on job scheme LETTERS l email@example.com Bahamas gets special mention in Geneva A Major Hotel has a vacancy for aHousekeeping ManagerResponsibilities includes: of up to 600 guest accommodations, public and employee areas housekeeping and laundry staff plaints concerning laundry and house keeping services The ideal candidate must possess the managerial level in an established hotel equivalent chemicals Interested candidates should send resumes to: firstname.lastname@example.org No later than Friday, 16th December, 2011 Disappointed in J ollification
T HE Ministry of Public Works and Transport has i ssued an advisory on the progress of the New Providence Road Improvement Project. A ccording to the ministry: Baillou Hill Road South, northbound between Ameryll ius Drive and Independence Drive, closed on Wednesday and will remain closed for one f ull week between 9am and 6pm, to facilitate the installation of water mains and ser vice ducts. Asphalt works have begun on Robinson Road between Third and First S treets. By the end of this week, traffic should be allowed on the entiretyR obinson Road. The western side of the Soldier Road/East Street junction and the eastern sideo f the Baillou Hill Road/Solider Road junction are closed to allow trenching for underground works. The a lternative route is Malcolm Road. Most of the junction of M arathon Road, Robinson Road and East/West Highw ay has been paved. The out standing area will be completed by the beginning of next week. Prince Charles Drive between Pine Barren Road (just east of the back entrance t o St Augustines College) will be paved by the end of the third week of December. Wulff Road from the r oundabout at Marathon Road to Kemp Road will be o pened to traffic the third week of December. Road paving The western section of the f ollowing side-roads off Mar ket Street have been paved: Young Street Bimini Avenue Palmetto Avenue Coconut Grove Avenue White Road P aving of the western section of the following side r oads continued this week: Bahama Avenue West End Street Poinciana Avenue Cordeaux Avenue Drivers should expect clo sures in these areas. Traffic w ill be permitted on Market Street at all times Final paving on Market Street north between Wulff R oad and Brougham Street is now completed. Final paving on Baillou Hill Road between Cockburn a nd Duke Streets is now com pleted. This section is now open to traffic. Drivers are reminded that the section of Kemp Road b etween Wulff and Chesapeake Roads is open to northb ound traffic only. Those travelling east should use Jerome Avenue, Bar 20 Corner, and Parkgate Road t o Village Road. Drivers travelling west should use Jerome Avenue, W ulff Road, Kemp Road, and Chesapeake Road as alterna LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011, PAGE 5 B Y DENISE MAYCOCK Tribune Freeport Reporter email@example.com FREEPORT Police are investigating an attempted a rmed robbery at Hanna Hill, Eight Mile Rock. Asst Supt Loretta Mackey reported that at about 1.40pm on Wednesday, police r eceived a report of an armed robbery at a scrap metal yard on Jack Smith Corner. A ccording to initial reports, three men were at the yard when they were approached b y a man armed with a shotgun. He demanded cash and p roceeded to gun-butt one of the men in the head. There was a scuffle for the weapon. Ms Mackey said the culprit held onto the shotgun and managed to fire the weapon i n the air, causing the three men to run for safety. The culprit fled the scene. N o one was harmed and nothing was stolen. A fire caused around $ 40,000 in damage to a duplex a partment block in the Freeport area on Wednesday. According to reports, fire o fficials were called to the Beaconsfield area around noon. They were able to extinguish the flames, but one of the single-storey units sust ained extensive damage. By CELESTE NIXON Tribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org THE new Magistrates Court Complex is expected to be operational next month. Giving a progress update a nd tour of the practically c ompleted facility, Attorn ey General John Delaney s aid it will strengthen the j udicial system moving forward. He said: This facility represents a tremendous improvement in the physical facilities for the Magistracy. C onstruction began in 2005 a nd in 2008, Adler Construction was awarded a $6.4 mil l ion contract to complete the j ob. With the exception of the Coroners Court, which will r emain in Victoria Gardens; and the new Magistrates C ourt being constructed in Fox Hill, which will be dedicated to remand hearings, the modern complex on South Street will house all Magistrates Courts, Mr Delaney said. As part of the raft of anticrime Bills passed in the House of Assembly in October, amendments to the Evidence Act were made to allow for live TV feeds from t he courts. I n accordance with the Act, t he complex will be connecte d by video link to the R emand Court, the Supreme Court, courts in Freeport and any other facility equipped with the necessary technology. The new complex will include a security system i ncluding metal scanners at t he entrance, an internal police station, a treasury and r egistry, and CCTV monitori ng. The three-story building will have separate elevators f or the public and magistrates and will also be equipped with a separate entrance for prisoners and male and female holding cells. While the complex is practically completed, restoration efforts and renovations of other government buildings are continuing in an effort to strengthen the justice system, the Attorney General said. The current Magistrates Courts will be worked on o nce the renovations of what M r Delaney termed the Supreme Court Campus d owntown, have been comp leted. This is not in the immediate future however, as once the traditional buildings the Supreme Court Building with the addition of the former Ansbacher House a re completed, it will prov ide additional physical capacity that will be ade q uate in the near term to a bsorb any needs, said Mr Delaney. He said the improvements t o the Corners Court are expected to be completed in a f ew weeks. It is my hope going forward that things will be done on a continual basis, Mr Delaney said. New court to be ready next month SCRAPYARD ARMED ROBBERY MINISTRY ISSUES UPDATE ON ROADWORKS IN COMING WEEKS ATTORNEYGENERAL John Delaney said the new complex was a tremendous improvement.
LOCAL NEWS PAGE 6, FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011 THE TRIBUNE H EALTH statistics reveal an increase in visits to local Emergency Rooms since the country began feeling the effects of t he global economic crisis. According to Minister of Health Dr Hubert Minnis, the higher frequency ofm edical emergencies came a result of the many crises resulting from financial shortfalls due to the economic meltdown. H e said: As a country, we were not immune to the international challenges that impacted every aspect of our lives. When external pressures mount, so does the presentation of health problems problems that must be immediately addressed. B ut regardless of the financial hurdles of the last few years, the minister said, the g overnment rose to the challenge. In spite of these increased demands, and in spite of other, national commitm ents, the government was able to increase its approbation to health care which has allowed the Princess MargaretH ospital to not only empower its team, but to realise a significant number of accomplishments, he said. Dr Minnis cited the completion of the M edical Records Warehouse and the recent groundbreaking for the new Critical Care Block on the grounds of the P rincess Margaret Hospital, as two of several major accomplishments recorded by hospital officials during the course of 2011. H e said the construction of the warehouse was another step in i mproving the efficient location and retention of patient records in the Bahamas. A n impressive ground-breaking cer emony for the $53 million Critical Care Block was held two weeks ago. D r Minnis said the executive management team at the PMH were also able to facilitate the relocation of the Family Medicine Clinic to First Terrace, Cent reville; launch a LIS system that is used for recording and tracking laboratory results for all patients; and introduce a s pecialised nursing course. He said hospital officials were able to accomplish these objectives because of the governments ability to provide the n ecessary resources, despite the sluggish economy. As economy falls, visits to emergency rooms rise MINISTER OF HEALTH Dr Hubert Minnis gives a speech during Governor General Sir Arthur Foulkes annual visit to the Princess Margaret Hospital on December 5. Photos: Patrick Hanna /BIS
LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011, PAGE 7 CLINICIANS at the Sandilands Rehabilitation Centrei n Nassau and the Orange C reek Clinic in Cat Island are involved in a pilot telemedicine project that could result in on-island psychiatric services across the country. The project allows patients i n northern Cat Island to r eceive psychiatric diagnosis or follow-up consultation at the local clinic, rather than having to travel to the capital. The programme is in its infancy but it is hoped that asp rotocols are developed, it will be eventually used in most Family Island clinics, Minister of Health Dr Hubert Minnis said. This, along with the team v isits that have been carried out over the past years, will c ertainly help to improve m ental health delivery across the nation. H e said the pilot project is one of the many steps being taken at the state-owned and managed Sandilands to increase the number of spe c ialised services and by extension, the quality of mental health care deliveredt hroughout the country. The centre remains comm itted to providing mental h ealth care to all Bahamians a nd thus, has extended spec ialised services to the Family Islands, Dr Minnis said. This is all part of the jour ney of providing comprehensive care with the ultimateg oal of assisting clients to a ttain and maintain their optim um level of functioning, and becoming productive citizens. Dr Minnis said a number mental health clinics were conducted by teams of prof essionals in Eleuthera, Long Island and Abaco during 2011. O ther teams visited Long Island, Cat Island, Acklins and Crooked Island in thew ake of Hurricane Irene, to render mental health support and services. This helped to bring the c entre a step closer to accomp lishing its goal of improving accessibility to mental health s ervices in all islands of the Bahamas, Dr Minnis said. He said the Public Hospit als Authority (PHA body which oversees public health institutions, hase mbarked upon an aggressive programme to help improve access to patient care infor mation and to promote an i ntegrated patient informa tion system. Dr Minnis said one such feature is the Integrated Clinical Environment (ICE t em, launched in May, 2011, w hich now allows physicians and nurses to review results o f laboratory tests online. The implementation of this new technology is an i nvaluable asset to our centre by aiding in the timely diag nosis and care of our clients, D r Minnis said. He said the expansion of the technological infrastruc ture at Sandilands has been s trategically aligned with the expansion of the health care infrastructure in order to effect greater inpatient care. Renovations to the northe rn and western wings of the G eriatric Hospital have resulted in more space, addit ional facilities and greater comfort for patients and visiting family members, Dr M innis said. Ongoing renovations are also being conducted on theT hompson, McClennan and Culmer's Wards. Sandilands officials are also preparing for the opening oft he new Robert Smith Child and Adolescent Special Education Building. Training programmes continue for all grades of staff d eployed to the Child and A dolescent Unit and the Robert Smith Ward, to facilit ate their efficient and effective work with children and adolescents who are mentally a nd physically challenged, Dr Minnis said. To date, 23 registered n urses, 12 trained clinical nurs es and 24 support staff, including staff from the Recreation al and Occupational Therapy D epartments, have complet ed training, Dr Minnis said. G OVERNOR-General Sir A rthur Foulkes urged staff at the Sandilands Rehabilitation Centre to continue to manage their patients with love and care. S ir Arthur visited the ment al health facility this week a ccompanied by Minister of Health Dr Hubert Minnis, Lady Joan Foulkes and senior officials from the Ministry of Health, Department of PublicH ealth and the Public Hospit als Authority. Staff of Sandilands Rehabilitation Centre, you have a responsibility to thoroughly and effectively care for the clients who are entrusted to your care, some indefinitely and some fora short period of time, he said. If you manage, build, maintain, repair or beautify; whatever you do, do it with love and do it with care. Sir Arthur challenged nurses and attendants to lead the charge, adding that they havea greater responsibility where p atient care is concerned, because they come in direct c ontact with clients on a daily b asis. When you give the client on Eloise Penn Ward his m edicine, bathe and older a dult on the Thompson Ward, conduct a group therapy ses s ion on the Lignum Vitae or Detox Unit, or take a client from the Robert Smith Ward for a walk, do it all with love and care, he said. T he governor-general also spoke to those who work b ehind the scenes, but who h e said play major roles in delivering the best possible p atient care. Some of you may not have d irect contact with clients, but i f you prepare their meals, launder their linens and clothi ng, deliver needed supplies, or clean their environment, I i mplore you to do it with love and care, he said. Sir Arthur told employees of the facility that he wasg rateful for the work they do every day for the senior citizens who have made their contribution to the building o f our nation. Project could lead the way in psychiatric services G OVERNOR GENERAL S ir Arthur Foulkes presents senior nursing officer Adrella Gibson with the Star Employee of the Year Award during the governor general's annual visit to Sandilands. Esther Gray, senior attendant and the 2010 Star Employee of the Year Award recipient, is at far left. Photo: Patrick Hanna /BIS MESSAGE TO CENTRE STAFF
LOCAL NEWS PAGE 8, FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011 THE TRIBUNE Bay St welcomes J J U U N N K K A A N N O O O O JUNIOR JUNKANOO took over Bay St last night, filling the street and the bleachers witht he sights and sounds of the f estival. The junior festival saw schoolchildren of the Bahamas creating music and costumes to get into the party mood. P icture special by F elip Major / Tribune Staff
LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011, PAGE 9
LOCAL NEWS PAGE 10, FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011 THE TRIBUNE ATLANTISWELCOMES SPEEDWEEK ATLANTIS H otel spons ored the gala ball of Speed Week last Saturday, sponsored by Pictet Bank & Trust and hosted by managing d irector Yves Lourdin. The event saw 275 Speed Week entrants, sponsors and g uests taking part in the ball room, decorated elegantly in red velvet, black and white. F or more pictures, see the B ig T tomorrow. P h o t o s : J o s h u a Y e n t i s / B l u e W a v e I m a g i n g
LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011, PAGE 11 matters are heard in Nassau, and not in Grand Bahama. G un court Magistrate Joyanne Pratt-Ferguson, who presided over the arraignment,a cknowledged Mr Smiths point as he went on to express concern about the $1 million drugs being held in that loca tion, and joked that there are big rats that like cheese. T he magistrate then asked the police prosecutor his thoughts on the points raised, to which the prosecutor agreed and said it was also a concern. Joseph, of Coopers Town, A baco, and Pierre, of Freeport, Grand Bahama, appeared on four possession charges, including possession of cocaine with intent to supply, alleged to have been comm itted on Tuesday, December 6, in Freeport. T he prosecution said the accused were in possession of a quantity of cocaine, two black Glock handguns and 53 live rounds of .9mm bullets with intent to supply. Drug Enforcement Unit officers found the items as they searched a house onM idshipman Road. Joseph and Pierre deny the charges. Magistrate Pratt-Ferguson reminded defence attorneys Dion Smith and Carlson Sherlin that the court no longer had the discretion t o grant bail. Before the conclusion of the arraignment, Mr Smith i nformed Magistrate PrattFerguson that his clients were not given their medication while in police custody, nora llowed to consult with their attorneys. Joseph is reportedly a diabetic while Pierre is said to have a severe kidney condition. The magistrate acknowledged the request and made theo rder, asking a Nassau Street police officer present to ensure that the defendants were fed and given their medication. T he two were remanded to Her Majestys Prison until they return to Court 9, Nassau Street, April 11 and 12, 2012, for trial. of the Tonique Williams-Darling Highway. Clauses in the contract stat ed the company was to report the amounts of fill extracted from the site and provide Ms Smith with all reports. The statement of claim said Ms Smith was never made aware of the amount of fill removed. To date, the actual amount has yet to be determined, it said. The property owner also made it known to the compa ny, according to the statementof claim, that all vegetation, including trees, shrubs and soil were to be transferred toa location of her choice for reuse, but this did not take place. While the company was allowed to work as an inde-pendent entity, Ms Smith did request the right to determine how the pit would be cut to preserve the property's usability. Instead, according to court papers, the pit was left unus able and now floods. Ms Smith alleges that the company lacked professionalism and care as several verbal and written requests to correct the issue were made. She was then left in debt as surveyors, engineers, heavy equipment operators and their machines had to be hired to complete the work while consultations, and expert advice continue. The Jose Cartellone Company further breeched their agreement when the property was turned into a dumping ground for garbage and debris, said the claim. In the process, continued the statement of claim, Ms Smith alleges that the compa ny damaged a $5,000 45-foot container by unlawfully entering it. Its $2,000 alarm system and other related items were also damaged. Added to those claims, the statement of claim outlined Ms Smiths special damages totalling $88,300 due to the company's negligence. $14,400 for expert reports and maps. $4,900 site clean-up and over mined hole. $1,900 videographer charges $1,000 to place the 45' container $1,500 for initial reports $7,500 consultation and site rectification $50,000 estimate to rectify the site that is ongoing. Calls made to the construc tion company were not answered. While underscoring the success of Mr Kemps Crabs for Computers scheme, Mr Woodside explained the department decided not to renew Mr Kemps contract after key deficiencies brought to his attention were not addressed. In assessment of the department (Mr Kemp w as viewed as someone who exhibited very strong c ommunity development skills, and certainly good protocol skills, he said. Unfortunately Mr Kemp did not seek to have his contract renewed with the department, in addition there was a failure to adhere to certain directives put to Mr Kemp and to make a long story short it was determined to part ways. Residents staged further protests over the current a dministrative system, which residents described as outdated and counterproductive to the growth of Mangrove Cay. According to residents, the externalised government services triples the cost of doing business in Mangrove Cay. One of the main frustrations for the people on the island is having to travel to South Andros, some 25m iles away by a water taxi to have basic local government services handled. Total autonomy is expected to boost the settlements economy by providing jobs and retaining wealth. However, some residents said they will have to see the change to believe it as the community had been promised an i ndependent district in previous years. Mr Woodside said the department will assign a c omplement of public officers to assume posts in v arious sectors, including customs, social services, port department, marine resources and Environm ental Health services. There will also be the need for the district to h ave shared responsibility in terms of the Public T reasury, but more importantly as we go forward w e want to ensure that the operation of the dist rict will be in full compliance with the Financial Administration and Audit Act, he said. The presence of central government authority w ill also bring oversight on matters of environmental concern and disaster management, Mr Woodside s aid, as well as reduce the departments travel costs. It restores Mangrove Cay to the level it was in its heyday, and that it will be separate of South Andros and then there will be no need for residents from Mangrove Cay to go to South Andros for services p rovided by the central government. instructs them look here, I say put Jane in a house. Now here is Jane in this house whos not qualified to be in this house and we know sooner or later shes gonna get into trouble, but the minister put her there. If it was under two different ministries, y ou would have checks and balances. BMC officials confirmed this week that 12 homes in six government subdivisions are currently being occupied without mortgages. Mr Russell said that there were over 100 unregu-l arised homes when the FNM administration came into power i n 2007. He explained that somet imes approved persons, whose loans were not yet finalised, were placed in homes with a rental agreement equal to estimated mortgage payments. Ideally, the money would then be added to the mortgage once it was f inalised. However, Mr Russell said due diligence was not always p erformed. Over 100 persons were found living in homes that were notp aid, some persons claimed the homes were given to them, somew ere put in homes and proper c hecks not done. We found persons had claims against them so couldnt finalise a nd so the mortgage is in limbo, said Mr Russell. Persons put in houses that werent the same person who applied, but h ad the same name. Mr Russells comments follows r eports this week of the significant debt troubles faced by the BMC. Amidst a high delinquenc y rate, BMC Chairman Dr D uane Sands said the corporat ion also owed $2.6 million to h omeowners for a contingency f ee that was never reconciled. M r Russell said he understood t hat the fee was set aside to pay the salaries of contracted e mployees as there was already a l ine item that addressed cost overruns. He said the minutes of the meeting discussing the rationale o f the contingency fee has disappeared. The idea, as I understood it, w as to use that money to maintain employment of persons here at the ministry and the department. M r Russell added: It should h ave been a government decis ion to do (add on a contingency fee) because you are increasing y our customer's debt without any k ind of consent. The government should have made the decision, and not just the minister and his group. Although a directive was issued by the Housing Departm ent to the BMC requesting the t ransfer of the funds, Mr Russell said the money was never handed over because of the ministrys long standing debt with the cor-p oration. T he Tribune c an confirm that the request was issued in 2005 and signed by technical director G ordon Major. Mr Russell added: I believe in checks and balances. I believet hat I should not be left alone to act like God, to make decisions without thinking about thei mpact, without understanding w hats gonna happen down the road. To make decisions to put p eople in jeopardy, because thats what youre doing when you give somebody a houset hats not qualified to buy one. f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e CONSTRUCTIONCOMPANY FACESLAWSUIT WILL$1M DRUG HAULBESECURE? NEW YEARS DAY DEADLINE FOR MANGROVE CAY P P L L P P m m i i n n i i s s t t r r y y s s $ $ 7 7 m m t t r r a a n n s s f f e e r r KENNETHRUSSELLMP says he believes in checks and balances to prevent abuse of the system.
LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011, PAGE 13 T OMORROW, Mackey Street will come alive with the sizzling smell of steak and t he amazing sounds of the p opular Bahamas Youth Alive Marching Band. Up to 100 members of this d ynamic group of talented young Bahamians will throw a live performance outside Nas s au Hotel and Restaurant Supplies at 116 Mackey Street, under the direction ofn one other than Dustin Babbs, former leader of the world renowned Royal B ahamas Police Force Band. W hats the occasion? A steak-out to raise funds for a most worthy cause. T his is a major fundraiser for Bahamas Youth Alive, an outstanding youth prog ramme formed under Child ren Missions Outreach. The band has grown from a h andful of children in the Kemp Road area into one of the hottest acts in Nassau. W ith 65 active members a nd a full complement of 132, Youth Alive members are spread throughout the i sland. The group is well-known locally they just performeda t the tree lighting ceremony on Bay Street and last year, they were invited to performa t the White House. But it all costs money. So from 11am to 4pm on S aturday, a team of volunt eers will be grilling steaks and offering full dinners for $10 to help raise funds to pur-c hase musical instruments and uniforms for the young performers. T he highlight of the day will t ake place around 2pm at Nassau Hotel and Restaurant S upplies, when members of the marching band put on a full performance to thank thep ublic for supporting them. T he band promises to thrill their audience with Junkanoo, Bahamian music and cont emporary gospel. The event is a team effort between Nassau Hotel andR estaurant Supplies, Childrens Mission Outreach and volunteers from the widerc ommunity. Childrens Mission Outreach was formed In March, 1 994, by its president, Rev R uby Saunders. Their mission is to help the needy with spe cial emphasis on youth develo pment. Organisers urge the public to come out in support so y ou can hear and see the b right future of our country for yourself. Marching band to bring street to life
LOCAL NEWS PAGE 14, FRIDAY, DECEMBER 9, 2011 THE TRIBUNE Give Back By Putting Cross Into The Ground BOYS FROM THE HOODEncouraged young teenage boys were apart of their programs, Carry The Cross Instead of Carrying Guns. These young men carried the cross, placed it into the ground and committed themselves not to carry guns. They carried the cross as a symbol of reconciliation, love and forgiveness. Each young man was given a cross as a reminder to wear around their necks. To Advertise In The Tribune Call 502-2396 T ONIGHTis shaping up to be a laugh out loud affair w ith Arnez J and the African King of Comedy Michael Blackson lining up t o take the stage at Comedy Night. P aragon Concierge and Event Management along with Bacardi are staging thec omedy event tonight at the Sheraton Nassau Beach R esort. Arnez J is rapidly b ecoming one of the most talked about comedians ofo ur times. His charisma and physi cal agility are unique and h ave been known to evoke g ut wrenching laughter and standing ovations, said Nelson Armaly, event promoter. T he St Louis Post Dispatcher described his comic s tyle as primarily physical. He runs, jumps, spins, slides and slips through his perform ances. Arnez J had performed on C omedy Central, Def Comedy Jam, BETs Comic View, the Keenan IvoryW ayans Show, Showtime at the Apollo, Shaqs All Star C omedy Jam, The Monique Show, Wendy W illiams Show, his own BET Comic View Grand-s tand half hour special and many others. His avoidance of profanit y makes his shows attract ive to family-oriented fans of all races. When asked about his broad base appeal he stated: I dont curse in m y daily life, why would I do it on stage? F eatured with Arnez J is the one and only African King of Comedy Michael B lackson. After his scene stealing p erformance in N ext Friday, fans demanded more. In 2005, Blackson did not d isappoint. He released his top-selling sketch comedy a lbum entitled, Modasucka, Welcome to America. W ith Blackson, the work never stops. Along with spe-c ial guest appearances on some of the hottest music videos, he stole the stage onP Diddys Bad Boys of C omedy on HBO and starred in a commercial for The Chappelle Show on Comedy Central. Nassau visit for COMEDY KINGS A RNEZ J, a bove, will be performing tonight at the Sheraton Nass au Beach Resort, along with Michael Blackson, right.