N ASSA U AND BAHAMA ISLANDS LEADING NEWSPAPER Haitians told to use their vote Volume: 108 No.62THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012 PRICE 75 (Abaco and Grand Bahama $1.25 WEATHER CLOUDY, T-STORMS HIGH 82F LOW 70F By AVA TURNQUEST Tribune Staff Reporter a email@example.com HAITIAN president Michel Martelly yesterday advised Bahamians of Hait i an descent to band together and lobby for a political party that they feel would best pro t ect their interests. During his two-day stopover in The Bahamas,P resident Martelly held frank d iscussions with officials and the Haitian community with the view to develop trade opportunities and improve the conditions of Haitians residing legally in the country. I told them to organise t hemselves and identify in this upcoming elections who is on their side, he said. By being determinate in the elections they may have people taking care of them, this is the democratic way. I p romised them to work for them to better their possibilities to remain in Haiti so Ih ad a very open discussion with officials as to how can we protect those who at leasth ave the legal papers. P resident Martelly said he was committed to working with the Bahamian government to find responsible and humane solutions to reports of mistreatment of legal resiV isiting leader sa ys pr otect your interests CHICKEN McBITES N E W The Tribune THEPEOPLESPAPER BIGGESTANDBEST LATESTNEWSONWWW.TRIBUNE242.COM WHY BUY ANYWHERE EL SE ?!?!Most extensive line in the Bahamas of HURRICANE RESISTANT Windows and Entrance External & NOW Internal Doors Call STORM FRAME WINDOWS for your free estimate today 325-6633 I NSIDETODAY Y Y O O U U R R S S O O U U R R C C E E F F O O R R O O B B I I T T U U A A R R I I E E S S NOBODYBEATSTHETRIBUNE NEWS SPORT FASHION MOVIES TV MUSIC ONSALEEVERY SATURDAY T T H H I I S S W W E E E E K K E E N N D D D D O O N N T T M M I I S S S S . . . By SANCHESKA BROWN T ribune Staff Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org POLICE are investigating two separate incidents whichh ave left two Nassau men d ead. The latest incident took place around 12.10am yesterday on Hay Street, off East Street. Police say the victim was s itting in the drivers seat of a green Honda, when he was approached by five men, two o f whom were armed with handguns. The men opened fire on the vehicle resultingi n the victim being shot twice i n his head. A friend of the victim jumped into the vehicle andd rove the man to hospital. He w as pronounced dead on arrival. P olice have not officially identified the victim, however sources say he is 25-year-old Tristan Bartlett. IT is up to the Bahamian public, not the FNM, to decide if PLP Golden Gates candidate Shane Gibson will once again sit in the House of Assembly, according to FNM Chairman Carl Bethel. Mr Bethels statement follows one from the DNA that claimed last week the main reasons why the PLP lost in 2007 was because of corruption, scandals and Mr Gibsons issue concerning Anna Nicole Smith. The DNA said it pulled this B y LAMECH JOHNSON T ribune Staff Reporter email@example.com A MAN was arraigned in court yesterday in connection with the shooting death of a Chinese man. Cleophas Clarke, 19, appeared before Deputy Chief Magistrate Carolita Bethell at Court 8, Nassau Street, accused of killing 45year-old Wing Hong Chan outside his home on Village Road on Monday, January 23. Mr Chan, who worked at the VIP Chinese restaurant and was related to one of its owners, was shot and killed during an armed robbery. POLITICAL sources have revealed that the Democratic National Alliance has set its sights on at least four of its 38 candidates as potentials for the deputy leadership of the party. While leader Branville McCartney has not announced who the party is courting for the position, the source said Wayne Munroe, Dr Madeline Sawyer, Randy TWO DEAD IN SEPARATE INCIDENTS PLPDEFEND GIBSONCHOICE S S E E E E p p a a g g e e s s 2 2 & & 3 3 S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 1 1 3 3 S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 1 1 3 3 S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 1 1 3 3 S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 1 1 3 3 THE PRESIDENT of Haiti, Michel Martelly, pictured during his visit yesterday. For more photos and details, turn to pages 2&3. Photo: Kristin Heinichen DNAWEIGHSUP DEPUT Y OPTIONS MAN IN C OURT OVER CHINESE WORKERS DEATH POLICE are investigating an alleged sexual assault on a male child. The incident reportedly occurred around 7.30pm on Tuesday involving an adult male. Police are following signifi cant leads into the matter and have launched an intensive search for the culprit. The child is presently receiving medical care. Active investigations continue. By PAUL G TURNQUEST Chief Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org THE Democratic National Alliance will be putting forward a new candidate for the MICAL constituency, after the previous political hopeful, Delano Munroe was dropped by the organisation. DNA Leader Branville McCartney revealed last evening that his party has decided to replace Mr Munroe with another candidate who The Tribune has learned is 35year-old Jervis Williams, a local contractor in Inagua. Mr Williams is also the nephew of Vernon Symonette, a former FNM Member of Parliament and Speaker of the House of Assembly. While Mr McCartney would not speak about the court case in which Mr Munroe has been charged with stealing by reason of employment, the DNA leader said that the decision to replace him was based primarily on the best interests of the people of MICAL. SEXATTACKONBOY INVESTIGATED PARTYLOSESANOTHERCANDIDATE S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 1 1 3 3 i m lovin it
LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012, PAGE 3 B y CELESTE NIXON T ribune Staff Reporter email@example.com HAITIAN President Michel Martelly wants to work with the Bahamas gov ernment to stop illegal immigrants from his coun-t ry taking jobs from B ahamians. V isiting with opposition leader Perry Christie yester day, President Martelly said while he looks forward to reinforcing relations between the two island nations dur i ng his visit, he will also be discussing illegal immigra tion, changes to the local Haitian Embassy and other i ssues. He said: It is a pleasure for me to be here to address these issues and also the prob l ems of Haitians living here. We know it is not easy for t hem, they came here look i ng for opportunities. We also know that being here, they sometimes take thejobs of the natives. We want to work with both governments to see how we can facilitate and solve these issues. As the official opposition, Mr Christie said it is particularly important for the PLP to establish good relations with leaders of countries that have close ties to the Bahamas. President Martellys visit provides a wonderful opportunity to forge such a rela tionship, he said. Mr Christie said he hopes to speak with the president concerning a number of initiatives and ideas that were previously discussed with Haitis former leader JeanBertrand Aristide. Among these is the possi bility of establishing a bilateral commission that would meet twice a year, to ensure that we had harmony in our relations where we can sit, talk and address the chal lenges. Another measure discussed was allowing Haitians to apply for Bahamas work per mits at the Bahamian consulate in Haiti, Mr Christie said. President Martelly arrived with his delegation on Tues day evening. His first event was a meeting with members of the Haitian commu nity at the Church of God auditorium on Joe Farrington Road. Police estimate thousands of people were in attendance to welcome the president to the Bahamas. He spoke of changes that they are making in Haiti and implored people to support him in the reconstruction process following the earth quake that devastated the country in 2010. President aims to stop illegal migrants P RESIDENT M ichel Martelly speaks to Perry Christie yesterday at his home. Photos: Felip Major / Tribune Staff
EDITOR, The Tribune. WE ARE entering a season where some of our mosta ble citizens take leave of t heir senses and profess their chosen political ideology with such a passion that the question of demonisation comes up. I n years past, I gave this a nomaly little consideration, but having come face to face w ith it in the past decade I feel the need to comment. This activity really pinged m y radar, when one of the local pastors, used some very inappropriate language as a man of god, as he directe d his flockin a previous election. I will admit that at the time I saw his behaviour as normal, when you consider his upbringing within that polit-i cal community. In that same year, I watched as several persons that I have been in ministry with, went out on political limbs and started cutting on the wrong side of the limbt hey were standing on; they would have done irreparable harm to themselves and their families, if not for intervention. I think demonisation is an a ccurate term, because when w e attempt to talk about those past incidences they claim to have no memory of it. This could be the year that we get some answers about the true function of political ideology in a social context, as a younger voting population asks the questions thath ave nothing to do with jobs, e ntitlement, dependency or E xodus as we have evolved into the new pharaohs. T he populace who see themselves as a majority will have to experience their own personal exorcising as they b attle the social and cultural i nfluences that have allowed particular biases to be inserte d into their psyches. I n my opinion, this is worse than being a drug addict. In a r ecent sermon during the Majority Rule celebration,P astor Timothy Stewart r eminded the listeners that we who consider ourselves the majority came into a circumstance that allowed us to exerc ise our freedom as Bahami a ns, but some of us were more comfortable in securing our o wn Pharaohs, as we ventured into the new land. What his sermon also implied that what we call a Bahamian Majority, has nothi ng to do with skin colour although some politicians w ould want to tell you different as they spread their own gospel of fear and mistrust. What was preached as a confusing black and whitei ssue, has been further conf ounded by the additional colours of yellow, red and green. Are we going to get past ourselves and the biases that b eset us every five years? O r are we going to nail those who lead us to wall and d emand that they fulfil their obligation to us and we can make it easier for them by ful-f illing our obligations to ourselves (buyin ya oon fridge and stove. Sic.) I f we are to get from where w e are and put all of this new infrastructure to work, jobs are the least of our worries. R ight now we have to fight the battles that matter, so that we and those whofollowusd o not find themselves back in Egypt, and, there is nothing wrong in doing the hard work required. Do not believe the lie that all you have to do is be Bahamian and let those whol ead do the rest. Nation building is hard work and it must be intentional; especially in the four and a half years between the silly season. E DWARD HUTCHES ON Nassau, February 7, 2012. EDITORIAL/LETTERS TO THE EDITOR P AGE 4, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012 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 OPENING a scientific frontier miles under the Antarctic ice, Russian experts drilled down and finally reached the surface of a gigantic freshwater lake, ana chievement the mission chief likened to placing a man on the moon. L ake Vostok could hold living organi sms that have been locked in icy darkness for some 20 million years, as well as clues t o the search for life elsewhere in the solar system. T ouching the surface of the lake, the largest of nearly 400 subglacial lakes in Antarctica, came after more than twod ecades of drilling, and was a major achievement avidly anticipated by scien t ists around the world. In the simplest sense, it can transform the way we think about life, NASAs chief scientist Waleed Abdalati told The A ssociated Press in an email Wednesday. T he Russian team made contact with the lake water Sunday at a depth of 12,366 feet, about 800 miles east of the SouthP ole in the central part of the continent. Scientists hope the lake might allow a glimpse into microbial life forms that existe d before the Ice Age and are not visible t o the naked eye. Scientists believe that m icrobial life may exist in the dark depths of the lake despite its high pressure and c onstant cold conditions similar to those believed to be found under the ice crust on Mars, Jupiters moon Europa and S aturn's moon Enceladus. Valery Lukin, the head of Russias Arc tic and Antarctic Research Institute, said r eaching the lake was akin to the Americans winning the space race in 1969. American and British teams are drilling to reach their own subglacial Antarcticl akes, but Columbia University glaciologist Robin Bell said those are smaller and younger than Vostok, which is the big sci e ntific prize. At 160 miles long and 30 miles wide, Lake Vostok is similar in size to LakeO ntario. It is kept from freezing into a s olid block by the more than two-milethick crust of ice across it that acts like a blanket, keeping in heat generated byg eothermal energy underneath. Lukin said he expects the lake to contain chemotroph bacteria that feed on chemicalr eactions in pitch darkness, probably sim ilar to those existing deep on the ocean floor but dating back millions of years. They followed different laws of evolu t ion that are yet unknown to us, he said. Studying Lake Vostok will also yield insights about the origins of Antarctica,w hich is believed by many to have been part of a broader continent in the distant past. And the project has allowed the testing of technologies that could be used in exploring other icy worlds. Conditions in subglacial lakes in Antarctica are the closest we can get to those where scientists expect to find extraterrestrial life, Lukin said. Drilling through the ice crust in the worlds coldest environment broughtm ajor technological challenges. Temperatures on the Vostok Station o n the surface above the lake have regist ered the coldest ever recorded on Earth, reaching minus 128 degrees Fahrenheit ( minus 89 degrees Celsius). Conditions were made even tougher by its high elev ation, more than 11,000 feet above sea level. The effort has drawn fears that the more t han 60 tons of lubricants and antifreeze used in the drilling may contaminate the l ake's pristine waters. Bell said the Russian team was doing its best to do it right and avoid contamination, but others were nervous. Lake Vostok is the crown jewel of l akes there, said University of Colorado geological sciences professor James White. These are the last frontiers on the planetw e are exploring. We really ought to be very careful. Lukin said Russia had waited several y ears for international approval of its d rilling technology before proceeding. He s aid that, as anticipated, lake water under pressure rushed up the bore hole, pushing t he drilling fluid up and away, then froze, forming a protective plug that will prevent contamination of the lake. R ussian scientists will remove the frozen sample for analysis in December when the next Antarctic summer season comes.T hey reached the lake just before they had to leave at the end of the Antarctic summer, when plunging temperatures halt all travel to the region. L ukin, who made numerous trips to Antarctica, said the physiological challenges of extreme cold and thin oxygen w ere aggravated by isolation. Martin Siegert, a leading scientist with the British Antarctic Survey, hailed reach-i ng Lake Vostok as an important miles tone ... and a major achievement for the Russians. The British are trying to reach another s ubglacial lake, Lake Ellsworth. The Russian team share our mission to understand subglacial lake environmentsa nd we look forward to developing col laborations with their scientists and also those from the US and other nations, as we all embark on a quest to comprehendt hese pristine, extreme environments, Siegert said in an email. Americans scientists are drilling at Lake W hillans, west of the South Pole. Some voiced hope that studies of Lake Vostok and other subglacial lakes will advance knowledge of Earths own climate and help predict its changes. By Seth Borenstein and Vladimir Isachenkov of the Associated Press. Nation building is hard work LETTERS l firstname.lastname@example.org Russians reach Antarctic lake Distributed throughout the Bahamas byBWABahamas Wholesale Agencies Ltd. East West Highway, Nassau Tel: 242-394-1759 1 Milton Street, Freeport Tel: 242-351-2201 If itsFLOURs OKAY!A favourite of The Bahamas for many years! OK Flour is a Patent Flour-the highest quality flour available Enriched and versatile, OK Flour is well suited to many baking and cooking applications OK Flourbetter value per pound A T f OK OK OK F F F l lo ur i s a Patent Flo u WANTED WANTED A leading local wholesaler seeks a qualified person for the position of:SALES REPRESENTATIVEThe sales representative will be responsible for selling a wide range of premium health and beauty aid brands and other consumer products within The Bahamas.Skills & Educational RequirementsAssociates degree in business or equivalent with a minimum of three years sales experience, preferably in the consumer products industry.Effective communication and presentation abilities.Effective time management, planning, and organizing skills.Proficiency in a variety of computer applications.Self-motivated team player. Candidates should possess a reliable motor vehicle and be willing to travel to the Family Islands. Please send application letter and rsum by February 23rd, 2012 to: SALES REPP.O. Box N-7504 Nassau, Bahamas or Fax 393.0440We thank all applicants for their interest; however, only short-listed candidates will be contacted. E DITOR, The Tribune. THANK you for allowing me space in your daily to commend the present gov ernment on its vision and one o r two of its many accom plishments since 2007. I start by saying that I am a proud Bahamian from off East Street. I am 35 years old.I left The Bahamas to attend university in 1994. I have not l ived in Nassau since as, once qualified, I was offered a job as a teacher. (I do plan tor eturn home to contribute to m y society, but, meanwhile, I a m proud to be a Bahamian c ompeting in the global work force). I read the newspapers online, and listen to ZNS when I can. I was forced to w rite when I noted that people were saying that the government has done nothing in the last five years. I wondered if they were mixing up the PLP government with the FNM government. I return home at every o pportunity. Imagine my extreme delight when I alighted at LPIA just before Christmas 2011. When I saw the new air port facility, I could not b elieve my eyes. Then, I left the airport and travelled to my home in Nassau East. When I came to Saunders Beach, I could not believe mye yes and the park was full of seemingly happy children a nd their guardians. I passed the new Straw Market and marvelled at the architecturea nd the new face of Bay S treet. T he following day, I went t o the Marathon Mall and could not get over the Robin son Road/Marathon/EastWest Highway junction. My m other even drove me around and showed me the new and improved schools that had been built since 2007, the first since May 2002. Leaving Nassau, the airport was equally impressiveI bought Bahamian soaps and c andies in the airport to take back to my friends. I live in the US, I also watch world news and am aware of how many govern ment employees have lost t heir jobs all over the world. I am so happy that my mother, a public servant, still has her job, she and all the other 20,000 public servants in theB ahamas. My only regret is that I will n ot be able to vote in the next election. Bahamians, take the scales f rom your eyes. Do not listen t o the noise in the market. H op a bus and drive around y our country. See for your selves the improvements that have been made in Nassau. Next time I come, I want to v isit the Family Islands so that I can see those improvements too. PROUD TO BE A BAHAMIAN Nassau, February 1, 2012. Bahamas impr o vements
By DANA SMITH d email@example.com TIME is running out for n egotiations between the government and the Bahamas Public Service Union, according to union president John Pinder. Mr Pinder said yesterday t hat the BPSU is still waiting f or Prime Minister Hubert I ngraham to renegotiate its i ndustrial agreement ahead of this years general election. T he agreement expired in June 2010 and the union has been working under a verb al promise from Mr Ingrah am that a new one is coming, but the union is looking for a w ritten contract. Time is running out now, were trying to get them to give us something prior to the election, Mr Pinder said. If a new g overnment comes into play, t heres still a waiting process. The prime minister has v erbally promised us some things but again the system is s uch that you cannot hold another government on a verbal agreement from the prio r government, if the governm ent should change. We want it in writing and signed off. F ollowing earlier threats of industrial action if this demand is not met, Mr Pinder said the union has a meeting with Mr Ingraham next M onday to continue discuss ions. H e said he will wait to s ee what Mr Ingraham will say before considering any p rotests which would only occur if the majority of the membership agrees. H owever, the union wants to proceed in an aggressive manner to get something ironed out quickly, he said. A mong the issues Mr Pinder wants to address with Mr Ingraham is health insurancef or both high risk and low risk jobs. He also wants to talk about salary increases. Last Tuesday, Mr Pinder a ccused the government of cherry-picking who they take care of in the public ser v ice. We heard through the press that the nurses got a $700 lump sum payment as w ell as $700 added to their salaries and health insurance. What about the police offi-c ers, the prison officers, the d riving instructors and all of the other government agents? All we want is for it to be fair across the board no cherrypicking, he said. B y LAMECH JOHNSON T ribune Staff Reporter l firstname.lastname@example.org A MAN who disappeared for a significant portion of his trial con-c erning nearly $1 million in drugs was convicted and sentenced to four y ears in prison yesterday. Omar Chisholm, 34, along with co-defendant Valentino Johnson,33, stood before Deputy Chief Magistrate Carolita Bethell to receive their sentences. The mat-t er has been before Court 8 since October 2009, when they first faced four drug charges and one charge of stealing. They, along with two other defendants already convicted, were accused of conspiring to possessa nd import more than 900 pounds of marijuana. T hey were further accused of importing and being in possession of the large quantity of drugs from Jamaica along with theft of a $100,000 boat, though the latterc harge was thrown out. These offenses occurred on April 1 1, 2009 in waters off Barre Tarre, Exuma. The accused men had denied the allegations and pleaded not guilty. Before giving her ruling, the judge summarised the facts of thec ase and Johnsons statement to police. She said officers on patrol in Barre Tarre harbour saw two men offloading items before getting on a vessel and heading out to sea. Police pursued the vessel and saw f our men aboard, Omar Chisholm being the driver. A fter numerous attempts to evade police, Chisholm jumped overboard, followed by Valentino Johnson. Officers caught the boat and f ound 16 sacks filled with marijuana. Johnson was pulled out of the water a nd arrested. According to Johnsons statement to police, Chisholm had approached him days before the incident to discuss making money in an operation, and said if John-s on was interested, he should meet him in Exuma. The accused said he did not know what the vessel contained but needed the money. He and Chisholm, who was deemed the organiser of the scheme,w ere convicted on the possession and conspiracy charges. C hisholms attorney Jiaram Mangra asked the magistrate to be lenient to his client, who he said is a very pleasant young man. He said the father of three opera tes a boat and jet ski business and has a supportive family that has been a t court throughout the trial. Mr Mangra asked the judge to take into consideration that his client had no previous convictions and the length of time the matter had been before the courts. J ohnsons attorney Calvin Seymour also noted that his client had no previous or pending matters before the courts which he said is an accomplishment for any 33-yearold in this society and noted that Johnson is a carpenter with a sup-p ortive family. Magistrate Bethell said she was v ery disappointed that Chisholm, despite being raised in a good home by teachers, turned to crime and caused his family to pay the $50,000 bail bond which he then breached. S he said all of the evidence suggested he was in control of the vess el. The judge accepted that Johnson was not the major player in the smuggling operation, but did not accept that he did not know the cargo was drugs. C hisholm was sentenced to four years in prison on each count, but the sentences are to run concurrently starting on January 17, the day that he was brought before the court after violating his bail conditions. Johnson was sentenced to serve t wo years, starting yesterday. LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012, PAGE 5 UNIONLEADERWARNSGOVERNMENT TIMERUNNINGOUTFORNEGOTIATIONS Jail for runaway drugs importer
T HE Bahamas National Trust and the Ministry of Tourism joined forces to cel ebrate World Wetlands Day b y introducing Bahamian tour operators to two national parks on New Providence that p rotect wetlands and their associated flora and fauna. The workshop was held on J anuary 30 and included a visi t to two New Providence National Parks. This was a wonderful way t o celebrate this annual event said Lynn Gape, BNT Deputy executive director. Over halfo f international tourists trav el to wetlands of all types but particularly in coastal areas the expenditure linked to wet l ands can be quite significant. This was an amazing opportunity to focus on key stakeholders who can insure that tourism in wetlands is sustainable and that tourismd evelopment in and around wetlands follows Ramsars p rinciples of wise use. The workshop was well attended by local tour opera tors including Majestic Tours, L eisure Tours, Bahamas Experience and by Ministry of Tourism representatives. M ore than 30 persons participated in a special presen tation on wetlands and a num b er of interactive activities i ncluding Wetland Jeopardy. The group then visited the Harrold and Wilson Ponds,a nd Bonefish Ponds national parks which protect an inland wetland and mangrove wet-l and area respectively. According to executive director Eric Carey: The BNT has through corporate a nd government support has been able to provide infra structure at both of these parks which encourage visi tation and nature tourism activities. LOCAL NEWS PAGE 6, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012 THE TRIBUNE The Tomlinson Scholarship***US$15,000.00 per year***Heading to Canada for University? McGill University McMaster UniversityUniversity of Guelph University of Toronto University of Waterloo University of Western Ontario If you are planning to attend one of these schools then apply NOW for one of our scholarships!Undergraduates onlyApplications must be in by March 31st, 2012 Application forms may be obtained by writing to The Tomlinson Scholarship, P.O. Box N 4857, Nassau, Bahamas The Tomlinson Scholarship is funded by High Tor Limited and family members in memory of Mr. Joseph Tomlinson Wetlands Day to protect flora and fauna S S E E E E p p a a g g e e 2 2 0 0 VISITORS inspect wetlands at a BNTsite.
By DANA SMITH email@example.com F OX HILL MP Fred Mitchell said more should be done to combat witness intimidation as it has become a serious obstacle to the crimi-nal court system. Speaking outside the S upreme Court on Tuesday, Mr Mitchell announced the PLP will reinstate the Witness Protection Programme shouldthey win the up-coming general election. The programme still exists u nder the FNM, but the MP contends that it has been neglected by the Ingraham administration. M r Mitchell said the B ahamas recorded more than 450 murders since 2007 as well as numerous other violent offenses a stark con-t rast to the low rate of convictions. H e could not offer an exact f igure, but claimed only a small percentage of those responsible for the crime w ave have been convicted a nd sentenced. One of the hindrances to the swift administration of just ice and the trial process is the intimidation of witnesses, Mr Mitchell said. Weh ave even seen where persons w ho were to have given testim ony lost their lives before doing so in fact, they were killed. He revealed prosecutors have complained their cases cant get off the ground because witnesses suddenly become reluctant to testify before the courts. Mr Mitchell reminded the press of the Justice Protection Bill which the PLP introduced a nd passed in 2006. After tak ing office in 2007, the FNM stopped this programme,h e said. (The Bill inal offence to use violence a gainst, threaten, damage or cause loss of employment to a person because they will be a witness, with a penalty of 10y ears in prison, he said. The legislation went so far as to offer identity changes in the c ases where it was warrant ed. Because they stopped the p rogramme, the FNM must b e held accountable for this gross neglect of duty which unfortunately has resulted int he loss of the lives of many Bahamian brothers and sis ters, Mr Mitchell said. A sked if there are any witn ess protection procedures currently in place, he said: The Witness Protection Programme is there in theory. I know that several of ourm embers of Parliament have raised this matter with the Minister of National Security, but at the end of the day the programme does not seemt o be as it was envisioned when we first put it in place and we believe witnesses are vulnerable still and much more attention needs to be paid to it. The PLP appreciates the g reat need for witnesses to be able to carry our their civic duty without fearing for their lives, and condemns the FNM for allowing so many to be lost to witness tampering before lifting a finger top rotect such persons, Mr Mitchell said. Last October, Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham said 19w itnesses in serious crime case s have suffered intimidation or harm as a result of their testimony in 2011. LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012, PAGE 7 Mitchell calls for more action to protect trial witnesses FREDMITCHELLMP
LOCAL NEWS PAGE 8, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012 THE TRIBUNE 100A woman who is admired for her unwaivering devotion to her Saviour Jesus Christ our Lord and loved for her generosity and kindness. Family and close friends are invited to honour her very long and rich life with a birthday celebration to be held at: Montagu Gardens Restaurant Sunday, February 12th, 2012 2:00 to 6:00 pm Written or oral memories of time shared with Sybil/ Granny are welcome.Dress: smart casual Celebrating a Century of Life Sybil Carey TrecoHappy 100th Birthday! By KHRISNA VIRGIL k firstname.lastname@example.org THE Progressive Liberal Party's Pinewood Gardens candidate Khaalis Rolle cas-t igated the FNM for monumentally failing the people of the Bahamas. S peaking with Bahamians living or studying in Florida, Mr Rolle said the government is causing people to suffer because it has taken too narrow an approach to solving the countrys economic probl ems. He said: "Too many people are being left out of the equation. The PM spoke a lot about roads and infrastruct ure developments, but what are the benefits of roads and b uildings if people are losing their cars, their homes, andt he electricity in 5,000-plus h omes is off?" M r Rolle said that to many people, the ability to deliver new roads may bej ust as important as the ability to fight crime, but true success only comes for a government when every p romise is kept. "You are not a success if y ou are only able to deliver on 50 per cent of the concerns. If you don't deliver on the other 50 per cent, you area failure. When you look at how t hey have addressed all of the concerns, they are monumental failures. "I want to see how you are g oing to take care of all of the people. I don't want you to just pick the pockets of success and neglect anythinge lse, he said. Mr Rolle also criticised the government for its extremel y exorbitant spending and borrowing, which he claimed h as wreaked havoc on the countrys finances. When you've raised as m uch taxes as we've done in the past few years, there's absolutely no reason the gov e rnment's fiscal house should be in the position that it's in, he said. M r Rolle added: "We go into these communities, talk to people and see the wide-s pread level of suffering. You have people that have to go a nd stand on a welfare line and beg for food. You have people that are angry. The quality of life has diminished significantly over the past couple of years. We d on't understand the level of frustration. The level of frus tration is directly correlated i n the rise of criminal activity." Rolle attacks FNMfor the partys monumental failure K HAALISROLLE said the government was causing people to suffer because of its narrow approach in solving the countrys economicp roblems.
By KHRISNA VIRGIL k email@example.com OPPOSITION leader Perr y Christie said Urban Renewal will be re-implemented within 48 hours of his partys election. The joint police and Social S ervices programme, aimed at breathing new life intoi nner city communities, won acclaim internationally and was one of the major reasons for the decrease in crime seen u nder the last PLP administration, from 2002 to 2007, Mr Christie said. H e said: This programme has educated people in knowing that they have to protect t hemselves, get involved with t he police and take the appropriate direction. We got an annual report s aying crimes against persons were decreasing dramatically because of this programme. H owever, Mr Christie said the thriving social initiative was sabotaged by the FNM because of politics. Because it had my handprint on it, the new government came in 2007 and gutted t he programme and changed t he whole course, he said. Mr Christie highlighted Urban Renewals multidim ensional mentoring pro grammes, saying they provided young men who weree xpelled from school with an o pportunity to reform their attitudes and approach to life. Urban Renewals school p olicing arm, he said, played a part in revealing that schoolaged boys were taking gunsa nd other weapons into the classroom. went into the House of Assembly and dumped on tot he table, as prime minister, the kinds of weapons that were being taken in and we k new the day would come when students would be get ting killed, he said. M r Christie said the PLP m ade a fundamental deci s ion to begin school policing knowing that one day, the officers assigned to the unit w ould evolve into individuals able to mediate disputes and promote conflict resolution. T he FNM has always insisted it never cancelled Urban Renewal, but rather made it more efficient and focused in the wake of accusations that t he PLP used the programmes personnel as campaigning assets. H owever, school policing was in fact cancelled after the 2007 election, the governingp arty arguing that making students feel as if they were prisoners under guard would have a negative effect on their development. LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012, PAGE 9 Break away from the ordinary and discover how to experience life to the fullest. The Isuzu D-MAX is the ultimate multi-purpose pick-up truck which enables you to drive through tough roadsand load a variety of cargoes. It is specially designed to be powerful, stylish and highly functional. The Isuzu D-MAX is one toughvehicle that willnever let you down!T H E I S U Z U D M A XPOWERFUL COMFORTABLE VERSATILE T YREFLEX S T AR MO TORSCall us today for your new IsuzuD-MAX Pick-UpTruck at 325.4961Wulff Road, P.O. Box N 9123, Nassau, The Bahamas Fax: 323.4667 Walk-ins Welcomed | For Appointments CallPh: 676-3368( next to Sbarro out west)T he Shops at Cable Beach Relaxer& Treatment$75Monthly Special Stylist and Nail Tech positions available. Christie makes pledge on Urban Renewal This programme has educated people in knowing that they have to protect themselves, get involved with the police and take the appropriate direction. P P e e r r r r y y C C h h r r i i s s t t i i e e
LOCAL NEWS P AGE 10, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012 THE TRIBUNE
By CHESTER ROBARDS Tribune Senior Reporter firstname.lastname@example.org BY the end of the governm ents 2012/2013 budget c ycle, the Public Hospitals Authority expects to have 13 brand-new ambulances, three of which were purchased last year. H erbert Brown, the PHAs managing director, saida nother five ambulances will be bought almost immediately as the money for them has already been approved, whilethe other five will be purc hased during the next budget cycle. He said the PHA is hoping to begin replacing its ambulances every three years in a bid to ensure there aree nough properly maintained vehicles to respond to emergency calls. He revealed in a statement released on Monday that Emergency Medical Services (EMS1 8,000 emergency calls last year, and as of last month, they had already logged 1,400 emergency calls for 2012. He said the high volume of calls, the vast majority of which stemmed from violenti ncidents, inevitably led to extreme wear and tear on the PHAs ambulances. This in any country would place incredible strain on these vehicles, he said. Last Thursday, it took two a mbulances to get a man to t he emergency room after the f irst responding vehicle broke down on the way to hospital. A nd many other ambulances in the PHAs fleet have serious maintenance issues, according to EMS personnel. Mr Brown said the five new ambulances soon to be acquired by the PHA will cost$ 72,000 per vehicle. He said when the vehicles arrive, they will each have cost the PHA a total of $124,000. While the PHA is upgrading its ambulance services for normal reasons, Mr Browns aid it has also had to conduct investigations into possible vehicle sabotage and unauthorised use of ambulances. Weve had reports of vehicle abuse and persons collecting their children in these v ehicles, this is simply unacc eptable and will not be tole rated, and we invite the public to team up with the PHA o n that, he said. LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012, PAGE 11 13 new ambulances expected by the end of next year ADOCTORSHOSPITAL ambulance the Public HospitalsA uthority expects to buy 13 new ambulances by the end of the 2012/2013 budget period.
information from a Greenberg Quinlan Rosner reportc onducted by the PLPs foreign consultant to determine what caused their loss. When asked if he thought the PLP was making the right decision in running Mr Gibson again, Mr Bethel stated: Thats not for someone outside of the PLP to judge, thats for the PLP to judge.I m not getting into these personality-based issues. He said Mr Gibsons win is for voters in Golden Gates to determine. You have to remember that Mr Gibson was re-elected (in 2007p ast. The statement from the DNA said: The DNA now asks of Mr Christie, how do you expect to achieve success in this election when you have not addressed any of the issues that plagued your partyi n 2007? According to the DNA, Mr Christie has yet to display the fortitude required to curb the scandal and corruption in his party. And, it said, Shane Gibson, a fter bringing international shame and humiliation on the Bahamas, has again been ratified as the PLPs candidate for Golden Gates. If Mr Christie is serious about the advancement of the PLP and the Bahamas p rogress, then he should resign as the weak, fledgling, indecisive leader that brought the party defeat and make way for innovative, vibrant leadership that is capable of restoring its reputation, theD NA said. Last month, Mr Gibson, former Housing Minister, dismissed the possibility of facing legal action over allegations of corruption in the Ministry of Housing. H is comments came after an investigation into the mismanagement of the Bahamas Mortgage Corporation (BMC ing a series of articles in The Tribune several years ago which questioned expenditure a t the Ministry of Housing. Dr Duane Sands, chairman of the Bahamas Mortgage Corporation, has claimed the sinking fund at BMC wasg rossly mismanaged under Mr G ibson and could not perf orm its function to make overdue bond payments. LOCAL NEWS PAGE 12, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012 THE TRIBUNE S ales & Full Service Department Rosetta & Montgomery Streets 322-2188/9 | E: email@example.com w ww.geoffreyjonesandco.com T he full assortment of GE Energy Smart CFLs found at Geoffrey Jones will help you save energy, save m oney, and help protect the environment in nearly e very xture in your home.BRIGHT Effective .& PLPdefend Gibson choice f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e S HANEGIBSON, t he PLPcandid ate for Golden Gates.
LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012, PAGE 13 T he second incident took p lace shortly after 4pm on Tuesday. Police say two men were at Marshall Road when they got into an argument resulting in both of them beings tabbed. T he victims were taken to the South Beach Clinic where one of the men died of his injuries. He is believed t o be 37-year-old Kevin Burrows. The other man was taken to hospital where he is listed in stable condition. S uperintendent Paul R olle, head of the Central Detective Unit, said the man in hospital is being guarded by police. He said that despite media reports, police have not classified the stabbing as a homic ide. He is in police custody, he said. Yes, he is a suspect but he is also a victim. We haven ot classified this incident a s murder. Just because one person is dead does not make it murder. Something could have happened, there could be other circumstances. We h avent had an opportunity to speak to the guy in hospital. After we do, we will continue our investigations andt hen make a decision. Until t hen the matter will remain unclassified. The countrys murder count stands at 10 for the year. Investigations continue. f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e Two dead in incidents Share your news The Tribune wants to hear from people who are making news in their neighbourhoods. Perhaps you are raising funds for a good cause,c ampaigning for improvements in thea rea or have won an award. If so, call us on 3221986 and share your story.
B y KHALILA NICOLLS Khalilanicolls@gmail.com THE other day I stumped a politician by asking him a simple question: What is Africa? The question emergedb ecause he responded to a nother question I posed, are you African, by saying, No, I am a Bahamian with African heritage. So naturally, I pressed, and asked, well what d oes it mean to have Africa h eritage? H e fumbled for a response, claiming that regrettably, he had not done the research to know which tribe in Africa he came from. He said if he werea sked the same question by o ne of his children, he would say, let us go and research it together. Being perturbed by my unbridled dissatisfaction, he gave it another go. This time, h e responded with the politic ally correct answer, speaking to Africas wealth, in terms of her beautiful and bountiful natural resources and the many venerable world leaders she has given birth to. T he reason I was perturbed by his response was not because I felt he gave a poor answer initially, which he did,o r that I was unsatisfied with his answer in the second instance, which I was not. It was because he seemed not t o have understood the ques tion. What does Africa mean in t he context of your identity? The question completely went over his head. I was not totally surprised, because when it comes to questions of identity and the study of meaning, many Bahamians seem to beu ninterested or simply clueless. As a street scholar with a professed love for questions of identity, I am often starved for engagement on these q uestions. It is a challenge a rriving at a common understanding of Majority Rule, because without an interro-g ation of meaning it is difficult to arrive at a full understand-i ng of ones identity or a consensus of worth. A s a Bahamian, I feel personally slighted, not having had the opportunity withint he framework of my statemandated educational career to interrogate the meaning of Majority Rule or any number o f other concepts that are cen tral to my identity. Needless to say, engaging i n the process of inquiry is part of the reason for creating my own platform, and ofg reat interest to me is the idea of blackness and its relation ship to the concept of Major ity Rule. T he last time I wrote about Majority Rule, I argued that its assumed meaning, a sym b ol of black liberation in the Bahamas, failed to stand up in the face of scrutiny. ThatM ajority Rule represented an e xpansion of our democratic system; the shattering of a glass ceiling for black Bahamians seeking political office; a milestone in politi cal progress, but not a transformation in black conscious ness or an ideological awakening of black people. Evidence suggests that at the time of its coining, our nations leaders were conflicted in the concept of their own blackness, and the real worth of that identity. Certainly, our leaders recognised the political power of the black association, but they also accepted that blackness was a political liability. It was something they were willing to bargain with. All in all, I suggested, our collective vision of a black nation was ideologically tame, and so too was the impact of the black majority govern ment on the progress of black Bahamians as a collective body. So what is left to be said? Lots, because when it comes to understanding our own blackness in a country that celebrates Majority Rule and recognises itself as a majority black nation, I feel our nations leaders, when they led us into the era of self-governance, failed to set the record straight on a number of important race issues. First, racial solidarity is not a form of discrimination against white people or some kind of reverse-racism. Second, blackness does not have meaning only where racial discrimination exists. Third, to speak about white racial prejudice and how it was used to justify genocide, to disfranchise and dehuman ise indigenous people across the globe, and to enrich white people and their generations yet to come is not an act of denigrating white people; it is basic world history. On the first issue, I need to reflect on another interview I recently conducted. When I asked the person the mean-i ng of being black, his first i nstinct was to say, let me see how to answer this without sounding like a racist. He then fumbled on to answer the question in line with the politically correct things to feel a nd say. I had a similar encounter when listening to Freddy Munnings Jr on the radio programme Matters of the Heart He recounted a time when he asked the Minister of Education (he did not specify which o ne) why Bahamians do not learn African history in school. The minister replied by sayi ng he did not want to teach racism. Mr Munnings rightly asked what is racist about teaching our children that t heir ancestors brought the world astrology, astronomy, mathematics and medicine,a mong other great contributions to world history. I am with Mr Munnings on this one: what is racist about African pride? What is racist about affirming a black identity? Why have we chosen toa ccept the view that racial solidarity is somehow a destructive and divisive concept; that affirming a connection to ones blackness is somehow racist? It is an apologetic view o f being black that black peop le would be better served to reject. In January, the Arizona S tate legislature won its battle to outlaw the Tuscon UnifiedS chool Districts Mexican American Studies (MAS p rogramme, on the grounds that it promotes activism against white people, pro m otes racial resentment and advocates ethnic solidarity. Best-selling classics like Pedagogy of the Oppressed b y Paulo Freire, and R ethink ing Columbus: The Next 500 Years by Bill Bigelow, were b anned from the curriculum. It seems white people still fear that blacks and other sub-j ects of white oppression might one day turn the tables and exact bitter revenge. In a school district where 60 perc ent of the students are Latino, the fears must run high. But quite frankly, I find this f ear to be arrogant, delusion al, self-absorbed and downright ignorant, but complete l y unsurprising. I t is on the same basis of Arizonas objection that a black man would find it uncomfortable to give meaning to his own blackness. Not wanting to sound racist is a euphemism for not wanting to make white people uncomfortable; not wanting to evoke their misplaced fears. Whether a black mans racial resentment is real or perceived, warranted or not, he should have the right and the space to feel as he may, and process his own experi ence, without having to be politically correct about it. Denying him his right to feel does more to promote racial resentment than allowing him his space to heal. I think that is worth repeating (and I hope people at Arizona State are reading): Denying him his right to feel (which includes inquiring into and processing his own expe rience) does more to promote racial resentment than allowing him his space to heal. In Pedagogy of the Oppressed, Freire states: Any situation in which some individuals prevent others from engaging in the process of inquiry is one of violence, and a violation of their humanity. When I spoke earlier about feeling personally slighted, it was this violation I alluded to. For all of our accomplish ments, blacks are still negoti ating the right to think, speak and feel for ourselves about our experience of being black. As a society, we do not have a humanising pedagogy in which students of the former oppressed and oppressor classes can deepen their con sciousness of their situation and be responsible for their own liberating process. The failure of inquiry is one of the primary racial dilem mas of the 21st century, and our blind longing for a postracial world only exacerbates LOCAL NEWS PAGE 14, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012 THE TRIBUNE What does it mean
LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012, PAGE 15 the problem. Race is an important means b y which people in a post1 942 world are able to recogn ise, understand and celebrate their collective identity (an identity I must note that predates 1942 by millennia); race has been a great sourceo f pain and is now the basis o n which there is need for great healing; race was the mode in which white people established their position of superiority and wealth, and itis the basis on which the form er oppressor class must now h umble itself. For all of the post-racial idealism of the Obama age, race is far from being an irrelevant concept. This leads me to my second c ontention: The suggestion t hat blackness only has meaning as a means of political organisation or as an object of someones oppression,w hether in a state of subjugation or resistance. Basically, the argument goes like this: because we do not believe there is any longer racial discrimination, or because we no longer believew e have to fight for our rights, we no longer need to hold on to a black identity. It is the we are one argument. The problem is, black peop le are not mere objects of someones oppression, and s eeing blackness solely as such is a shallow way to conceive of ones identity. Sadly, this is how we have been taught: to identify with each o ther based on struggle. That i s why, typically, those who f eel the struggle is over, celebrate the good fight, but feel little to no need for race asso-c iation. They see no fallacy in the concept of One Bahamas. O n the other hand, those who f eel the struggle continues, see the world more pronouncedly through a racial lens, and experience disso n ance in the concept that we are one. The black identity does not exist only because white peo p le once were the authors of our oppression. The experie nce of the Maafa (a term used to collectively describe the history, effects and legacy of slavery, colonialism, neocolonialism and the various atrocities on African peoplea s a collective) has no doubt s haped how we understand r ace, but prior to the perverted introduction of the postMaafa racial construct, there was still a black identity to which black people are inex-t ricably linked. The reason I say the black c onsciousness of our leaders, a nd our nation as a whole, in the era of Majority Rule was skin deep is because it wasn ot an affirmative ideology that defined our blackness; it was a concept of our biologi-c al likeness, otherwise known a s skin colour, combined with a common experience of oppression under white control and a common political objective. It was around that identity that black politicall eaders were able to carve out a black constituency and mobilise the masses. Many black Bahamians to t his day still find it difficult to answer the question, What does it mean to be black? M any black Bahamians still c annot reconcile the concept of being Bahamian and African. It pains them to assume that identity unless it is qualified, as in Bahamian with African heritage orB ahamian who is a descendant of Africa. The black experience of the Maafa created in black people s uch a hatred of Africa and all things African, but to this d ay, blacks who claim to be liberated have yet to reclaim their mother. I am no Bible s cholar, and usually I avoid Bible quotes, but I make an exception to cite Exodus 20:12, a verse Bahamians are well familiar with: Honour thy father and thy mother thatt hy days may be long upon t he land which the lord thy G od giveth thee. What about restoring the love for our earth mother? Despite our discomfort with claiming a one (Bahamiano r African) identity, there is no conflict of identity or need f or a dichotomous relations hip. Think, after all, about our mothers who marry they take on a new legal name( Bahamian), but they never lose their maiden name of birth (Africanm other, for example, has e very right to claim her Gage i dentity as she does to her Nicolls identity. Her being a Nicolls does not negate her being a Gage. Her being a Gage does not deny her beinga Nicolls. T he main point in all of this is how we understand our blackness as black people. I m aintain that Chinese people do not hold a concept of being Chinese because they haveb een caricatured as having s lanted-eyes. An Indians concept of being Indian is not because of an accent. The recognition of their Chinese or Indian identity is based on a shared understanding of h eritage, language, food, culture, history, geography, lega cy and the likes. Black people do not have a consensus of identity, not because no commonality e xists, but because we have chosen to deny our very existence. to you to be black? Whether a black mans racial resentment is real or perceived, warranted or not, he should have the right and the space to feel as he may, and process his own experience, without having to b e politically correct about it.
LOCAL NEWS PAGE 16, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012 THE TRIBUNE H e had reportedly just returned home after cele brating the Chinese New Year with family and friends when he was a pproached by a gunman at around 3.30am. After being robbed of his cell phone, Mr Chan was then shot. He died a short time later in hospital. A t yesterdays hearing, Clarke was not required to enter a plea to the charge due to the nature of the offence. He was informed by the mag i strate that the prosecution w ould present a Voluntary Bill of Indictment against him on April 19. The Bill will directly forward the case to the Supreme C ourt for trial, bypassing a l engthy pre-trial in Magis trates Court. D eputy Chief Magistrate B ethell told the accused he could not be considered for, or granted, bail due to the n ature of the offence. Clarke was also charged with housebreaking, theft and arson all alleged to have taken place on the same day as Mr Chans murder. I t is claimed he broke into a house at Winton Meadows, Yamacraw Beach Estates, and stole a Toshiba TV and gold ring together valued at $3,200. Deputy Chief Magistrate Bethell told the accused he was not allowed to enter a plea to those charges or select where he wished to have the matters tried as they had all been tied to arson, which cannot be tried in the Magistrates Court. The prosecution will present a Voluntary Bill of Indictment regarding this matter on the same day that Clarke returns to court, April 19. Bail was not an option for him, the magistrate said, as he already had been denied a bond on the murder charge he has against him. Clarke, who did not have an attorney present during his arraignment, was remanded to Her Majestys Prison, Fox Hill. C LEOPHAS CLARKE i s escorted into court by police. Photo: T im Clarke / Tribune Staff Man in court over Chinese workers death f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e
LOCAL NEWS THE TRIBUNE THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012, PAGE 17 In light of the circumstances that would have come to light, we thought it was best for the people of MICAL andfor the party to move in a diff erent direction and that is w hat we did. We made a determination and acted on it. Unfortunately in politics today. we see persons on the o ther side who do not make s uch decisions. In Parliament today, we have persons who have admitted wrongdoing which amounts to a criminal act and nothing has been done. Persons who have even submitted their resignations, those resignations have not been accepted. When we become the government we want to be in a position to amend the Constitution to recall MPs if they are not acting as good representatives and, of course, that determination would be made by the constituents because we believe that is vitally important for good governance, Mr McCartney said. The DNA leader added that the Bahamian people now only seem to see their respective Members of Parliament every five years when they are canvassing for the peoples votes. This kind of absentee representation, Mr McCartney said, is what his party will do away with. We want to put the power in the hands of the constituency. So if your MP is not doing right, they can be recalled. I think that would cause these MPs to be more responsive to their constituency. What I did in Bamboo Town, from day one was to continue to do things in the constituency. I can let my record speak for itself. With Mr Munroe being the third DNA candidate having to be withdrawn by the party, Mr McCartney said he does not think that this reflects poorly on his party or the selection process under which his candidates have been put. This is nothing new. This has happened before. Candidates can be moved and even moved to different constituencies. We want what is best for the relative constituencies. We want the best representation. We are making these decisions now. I dont think it should be looked at as something untoward. If we did not, then I could see people looking at this in a negative light, he said. On February 13th, the DNA is expected to hold elections for its deputy leadership post a race Mr McCartney expects will be hotly contested. This event is expected to be followed by an official reveal of the deputy leader at the Wyndham Nassau resort on February 15th. I think we are positioning ourselves quite well. What we have done in the past nine months is historic. We are a major party in nine months. I would dare say that has not been done in this entire region. God willing we will be the government soon," he said. B utler and Rodney Moncur each have a fair chance of being nominated for the post. The four are the candidates for the Mount Moriah, Southern Shores, North Andros a nd the Berry Islands and B ain and Grants Town con stituencies respectively. Admitting that he has t hought about occupying the party's second-in-command position, Mr Butler said he could not confirm if he wasb eing considered. He said: "Democracy in the DNA is alive and well. Folks w ill have to be nominated and it will go from there. There will be a process, but I ama lways willing and ready to s erve my country if I am nom inated." When asked what he would contribute as the party's d eputy, Mr Butler said his m ajor objective would be to offer support to the DNA leader. As such, I would offer my support to our leader, as any deputy would do. I am a teamp layer and visionary, with that I know how to execute a vision. I also believe in supporting the plans of the candidates and ensuring that they can achieve the things needed to c arry this country to its fullest potential. He added that the DNA is filled with people who would be ideal for the position. f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e o o n n e e DNAWEIGHS UPDEPUTY OPTIONS Party loses another candidate D NADEPUTY LEADER c andidates Dr Madeline Sawyer, Wayne M unroe, Rodney Moncur and Randy Butler.
LOCAL NEWS PAGE 20, THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 9, 2012 THE TRIBUNE Both Bonefish Pond and Harrold and Wilson Pond offer a host o f entrepreneurial activities from b irdwatching to kayaking and snorkeling as well as visitor services which can make the experience just t hat much more enjoyable. Yes, these parks protect essential habitat for wetlands bird anda ct as nurseries for a important fishe ry species but they also provide great recreational opportunities for B ahamians and visitors. Shelley Cant, BNT education officer, said: The BNT would like to see wetlands that are currently under protection being used by l ocal entrepreneurs. If people see that wetlands have value they will support more wetlands being prot ected. We feel our national parks o ffer valuable services to our ever d iversifying tourism market. February 2 each year is World W etlands Day. It marks the adop tion of the Convention on Wetlands on February 2, 1971, in the Iranianc ity of Ramsar on the shores of the Caspian Sea. Each year since 1977, government agencies, non-govern m ental organisations and groups of citizens at all levels of the community take advantage of the opportunity to undertake actions aimed at raising public awareness of wetl and values and benefits in general. The Bahamas was the 99th country to accede the convention on J uly 6, 1997. There are 160 cont racting parties and 1,610 Wetlands o f International Importance. The Bahamas has one wetland of Intern ational Importance, the Inagua National Park specifically Lake Rosa which is protected within thep ark boundaries. It is also an Important Bird Area providing important wetland habi t at for flamingos, large numbers of migratory ducks, herons, egrets and several species of shorebirds including the endangered Piping Plover. WETLANDS DAY TO PROTECT FLORA AND FAUNA f f r r o o m m p p a a g g e e 6 6