Group Title: Caribbean today (Miami, Fla.)
Title: Caribbean today
Full Citation
Permanent Link:
 Material Information
Title: Caribbean today
Uniform Title: Caribbean today (Miami, Fla.)
Physical Description: v. : ill. ; 38 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Caribbean Pub. Services
Place of Publication: Miami Fl
Miami Fl
Publication Date: January 2009
Copyright Date: 2010
Frequency: monthly
Subject: Economic conditions -- Periodicals -- Caribbean Area   ( lcsh )
Politics and government -- Periodicals -- Caribbean Area   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
Additional Physical Form: Also available by subscription via the World Wide Web.
Dates or Sequential Designation: Began in 1989.
General Note: Description based on: Vol. 10, no. 3, published in 1999; title from cover.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00099285
Volume ID: VID00034
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 40985415


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0 O0

, o r I d

O Tel: (305) 238-2868
Vol. 20 No. 2 Jamaica: 654-7282

Dr. Carolyn
Gomes, a
activist, is
Among seven
global advo-
cates to
receive the
United S
Nations General Assembly's
top human rights prize, page 2.
_____ JA

This month the United States
will embrace its first African
American president. But
decades ago, Dr. Martin Luther
King Jr., whose birthday is cel-
ebrated as a national U.S. holi-
day, lost his life in a civil rights
struggle to make it possible,
page 12.

He played in a movie about a smp v
England's monarch. Now 91- Iii i
year-old Bermudan-born actor
Earl Cameron gets ready to
meet real-life Queen Elizabeth
II, who is honoring him for serv-
ices to drama in a career span-
ning seven decades, page 17.

N ew s .................................................2...
View point...........................................7...
Health .................................................9...

Business ............................................11
MLK's Birthday ................................12
Sport ......................................... ........ 14

Tourism/Travel ...............................15
Arts/Entertainment .........................17
Region .............................................19

W e c o v e r y o u r



ne ws

U.S. immigration raid nets 110

Caribbean nationals in Florida

MIAMI United States
Immigration and Customs
Enforcement (ICE) officials
said their agents arrested
more than 100 Caribbean
nationals in a major immigra-
tion sweep in South Florida.
Officials said 110 persons
classified as immigration fugi-
tives and immigration viola-
tors, were detained late last
month after a five-day
enforcement operation in
Miami-Dade, Broward and
Palm Beach counties, as well
as in Orlando and Tampa.
According to ICE, among
those arrested and will be
deported are nationals from
Haiti, The Bahamas, Jamaica,
and Trinidad and Tobago.
They said 81 immigration

fugitives who went into hiding
after earlier being ordered to
leave the country and 29 oth-
ers who were guilty of violat-
ing immigration laws were
The operation netted 47
arrests in Miami-Dade, 30 in
Broward, 15 in Palm Beach,
11 in Tampa and seven in
"ICE will continue to
arrest and deport aliens who
have ignored an immigration
judge's order to leave the
country," said Michael Rozos,
field office director for the
ICE Office of Detention and
Removal Operations in
"While we are a welcom-
ing country, we expect those

Investors cry fraud over U

scheme run by Haitian-b(

MIAMI United States feder-
al and state authorities from
Florida are investigating a
Haitian-born, self-styled
investment guru, who alleged-
ly duped hundreds of his com-
patriots in South Florida to
pour their savings into his
Haitian investors in
Florida claim they fell victim
to a scheme concocted by self-
proclaimed evangelical minis-
ter George Theodule, who
reportedly promised to double
their money in three months.
The alleged victims said

late last month that they had
filed a lawsuit in U.S. federal
court, claiming that Theodule
bilked hundreds of investors
out of millions of dollars,
while promising to double
their money through stock
and options trading.
"Theodule said he was
going to create 10,000 million-
aires among the Haitian peo-
ple and empower them," said
Jared Levy, a West Palm
Beach lawyer representing at
least 50 investors represented
in the suit.
"The sad thing is, they

wanting to immigrate here to
do so in a safe, legal and
orderly manner."
Of the 110 arrested, 93
remained in ICE custody up
to press time, and 17 were
processed for removal and
released. In the case of those
released, ICE officials said
they released migrants who
were verified to be sole care-
givers or as having medical

Of the arrested, officials
said 24 had criminal records
that included aggravated
assault, battery, drug posses-
sion, trespassing, disorderly
conduct, resisting an officer

I.S. money

orn pastor
believed him," he added.
In response to the claim,
Theodule, 48, said tersely:
"This is just too delicate to
talk about."

According to the lawsuit,
Theodule allegedly attracted
investors, primarily Haitian
Americans, through invest-
ment clubs that he encouraged
others to start in a network
that grew rapidly over the past
The lawsuit said leaders

Do you qualify for

Property Tax Exemptions?

Available exemptions include:
Civilian Disability
Widow and Widower

Jamaican activist is among
seven global advocates to
receive the United Nations
General Assembly's top
human rights prize.
Carolyn Gomes, execu-
tive director and co-founder
of Jamaicans for Justice,
has received the award at a
General Assembly ceremony
marking the 60th anniversary
of the adoption of the
Universal Declaration of
Human Rights (UDHR).
The prize, which is given
every five years, was first
awarded on Dec. 10, 1968, on
the 20th anniversary of the
adoption of the UDHR.
Gomes joins a distin-
guished roster of previous lau-
reates that includes apartheid
fighter and former South
African President Nelson
Mandela; United States civil
rights leader Dr. Martin
Luther King, Jr.; former U.S.
first Lady Eleanor Roosevelt;
former U.S. President Jimmy
Carter; and Amnesty
"As we mark the 60th
anniversary of the Universal
Declaration of Human Rights,
we acknowledge the tireless
work and invaluable contribu-

The United Nations Economic
Commission for Latin
America and the Caribbean
(ECLAC) says poverty
declined slightly in the region
in 2008, despite the global eco-
nomic crisis.
In its annual report,
released last month, ECLAC
said the percentage of the
population living in poverty in
Latin America and the
Caribbean during 2008
dropped to 33.2 percent, or
182 million people, from 34.1
percent, or 184 million people,
for the previous year.
However, ECLAC said
extreme poverty or indigence
rose mildly, from 12.6 percent
in 2007, or 68 million people,
to an estimated 12.9 percent,
or 71 million people, this year.
The report said efforts to
reduce poverty and indigence
in 2008 were "less effective
than in the 2002-2007 period",
when the number of people liv-
ing in poverty or indigence
dropped by 9.9 percent, or 37
million people, and 6.8 percent,
or 29 million, respectively.
"Estimated figures for
poverty and indigence reflect
the impact of rising inflation
since early 2007, and particu-

tion of these individuals and
organizations that have fought
to see the rights and freedoms
embodied in this historic
document become a reality
for people in all corners of
the world," UN General
Assembly President Miguel
D'Escoto said.
"These awardees consti-
tute symbols of persistence,
valour and tenacity in their
resistance to public and pri-
vate authorities that violate
human rights.? They consti-
tute a moral force to put an
end to systematic human
rights violations."
Other winners of this
year's award are: former U.N.
High Commissioner for
Human Rights Louise
Arbour; United States ex-
Attorney-General Ramsey
Clark; and Denis Mukwege,
co-founder of the General
Referral Hospital of Panzi in
the Democratic Republic of
the Congo (DRC). The list
also includes Human Rights
Watch, represented by its
executive director Kenneth
Roth; slain Pakistani leader
Benazir Bhutto; and Dorothy
Stang, a nu

larly escalating food prices,
although food and fuel prices
in the region have ceased
climbing in recent months",
ECLAC stated.

It anticipates the global
economic downturn to impact
the region "through a weaker
demand for commodity
exports, declining investment
in productive sectors, lower
migrant remittances, and
international financial market
constraints for emerging coun-
"Employment is expected
to stagnate during 2009, while
average real wages are to
remain unchanged or diminish
"Economic forecasts sug-
gest that average household
incomes will deteriorate, par-
ticularly among independent
and informal workers whose
jobs are most sensitive to
movements in economic
1 l ,, it added.
In this context, ECLAC
said poverty and indigence
would most likely increase
moderately, continuing the
negative trend begun in 2008.

lwww .caibeatoayco J

Jamaican wins a

U.N. award

Decline in Caribbean

poverty ~ U.N.

* Veteran Disability
* Senior Citizen
* and more...

* Portability
The deadline to apply is March 2,2009.

Go to or call 3-1-1 today.

January 2009



IN Representative Ollice
Sunshine Plaza
corner of North State Rd. 7 (441)
and Commercial Blvd.


Mortgage Facilitym ai a
l national
Loans are approved in Jamaica

January 2009


MIAMI Despite increasing
appeals for a halt to the depor-
tation of Haitians, United
States immigration officials
have resumed sending back
Haitians to their homeland.
"We determined that it
was appropriate to resume
based on the circumstances in
Haiti," Nicole Navas, a
spokeswoman with U.S.
Immigration and Customs
Enforcement (ICE), said last
month, ending a three-month
reprieve in the wake of a
series of storms that devastat-
ed the French-speaking
Caribbean country.
"The individuals being
returned have final orders of
removal and the necessary
travel documents," added
Navas without further elabo-
The announcement came
while Haiti is still reeling from
the storms and hurricanes that
left over 800 people dead, tens
of thousands homeless, and
caused over $1 billion in dam-
ages. U.S. immigrant authori-
ties halted deportations to
Haiti in September in the
wake of storm ravages.

But immigration advo-
cates here expressed outrage
and frustration with the
resumption of deportation.
"It's an outrageously inhu-
mane act," said Cheryl Little,
executive director of Florida
Immigrant Advocacy Center
in Miami.
"We are attempting to do
whatever we can to convince

January 2009


n e WS

U.S. resumes deportations to Haiti

Security requesting travel docu-
ments for 43 non-criminal
"We still have thousands
of cubic meters of mud being
removed from Gonaives,"
Latortue told reporters last
month, referring to the
Haitian seaport hit hard by a
series of recent storms.
"There are still people in
shelters, and, of course, peo-
ple know children are suffer-
ing from malnutrition in Haiti.
"These are all circum-
stances that put the country in
a difficult position struggling
to recover."

The latest immigration
move came as a host of U.S.

(U.S.) government officials to
change their minds on this."
Ralph Latortue, the
Haitian consul general in
Miami, said he found out about
the resumption of deportations
to his native land when he
received an e-mail from the
Department of Homeland


legislators called on
Washington to grant Haitians
Temporary Protected Status
(TPS). In late November,
Southern Florida Democratic
Congressman Alcee L.
Hastings wrote President-elect
Barack Obama urging him to
make granting TPS to
Haitians a priority in his new
administration. Hastings, who
represents the city of
Miramar, outside Miami, said
in his letter that "the people
of Haiti cannot afford to wait
a single day longer for this
much needed assistance.
"While I continue to hope
that our current President
(George W. Bush) will finally
acknowledge and address the
dire plight of the Haitian peo-
ple, it is important that the
next administration be made
aware of the importance of
TPS," stated Hastings, who
has been in the vanguard of
pushing for TPS for Haitians.
He said since Obama was
elected on a platform of
renewing America's global
leadership, by extending TPS
to Haiti, as has been done for
other nations in similar situa-
tions, Obama would "once
again prove that the strength
of America is not simply the
might of its military but also
its capacity for compassion".
The congressman is the
author of H.R. 522, the
Haitian Protection Act, which
would designate Haitian
nationals in the U.S. eligible
for TPS.

with violence, sexual battery,
Social Security fraud, burglary,
carrying a concealed firearm,
larceny, grand theft and lewd
and lascivious assault on a
ICE officials highlighted the
case of a 46-year-old Haitian
national, who was also arrest-
ed on Dec. 16 in Broward
County, who according to
them entered the U.S. on Jan.
5, 1981 and, in May 1986, was

of the clubs agreed to recruit
investors, mainly through
their churches in southern
Florida, and then turn the
money over to Theodule's
Creative Capital Consortium.
"People came from all
over Miami, Broward, Palm
Beach (counties) all thinking
he was going to better their
lives," Levy said.
Nerline Horace-Manasse,
30, one of the Haitian investors
in Palm Beach County, said
she invested $20,000 in the
alleged scheme last February
and another $5,000 later, after
Theodule reportedly said her
money had doubled.
"He used his Haitian back-
ground to reach Haitians,"
Horace-Manasse said.
"He read the Bible,
prayed with people, cried with

IDB pledges to

cope with global
American Development Bank
(IDB) says helping Caribbean
and Latin American countries
to weather the global economic
storm will be a key priority for
the international financial insti-
tution in 2009.
The commitment came in
a year-end release issued by
the IDB in which it boasted of
a record $12.2 billion in loan
approvals, credit guarantees
and grants for the Latin
America and Caribbean region
in 2008.
"This is 27 percent higher
than the $9.6 billion approved
in 2007, reaffirming the IDB's
role as the leading source of
long-term funding for Latin
America and the Caribbean",
the statement noted.
The IDB also approved
operations totaling $900 mil-
lion in 2008 from its new fast-
disbursing emergency liquidity
fund. The $6 billion facility,
created in October, provides
funding for countries facing
transitory difficulties in access-
ing international credit markets
due to the financial turmoil.
"The funding will go for
domestic banks so they can

help Caribbean

I economic crisis
lend to local firms to support
their investments and opera-
tions", it stated.
"Conditional cash transfer
programs for the poor, a grow-
ing alternative that the bank
supports, has also been an
important measure to defend
recent achievements in the
fight against poverty during
these trying times", the IDB

The release also noted that
the past six years have been
among the most glorious for
regional economies, with
growth fed by soaring com-
modity prices and generally
more cautious fiscal policies.
However, as the effects of
the financial crisis in the United
States and Europe deepen, the
IDB is forecasting that growth
in the region will likely slow to
between two per cent and 2.5
percent in 2009 from 4.5 per-
cent a year earlier.
The IDB also expects capi-
tal flows into the region to fall
below the required $250 bil-
lion, pushing millions back into

convicted for possession of
cocaine and sentenced to 18
months probation. He was
ordered deported on Jan. 25,
"We will conduct these target-
ed fugitive operations to
ensure that removal orders
are carried out and locate
these immigration violators
who potentially pose a threat
to public safety," Rozos said.

cry fraud...
them," she added. "He made
us believe he was going to
help us."

David Rothstein, a Miami
lawyer, who represents dozens
of Haitian investors, said many
failed to scrutinize Theodule
before buying into his alleged
"He got people to hand
over money without a good
look behind the business cur-
tain," he said.
"It appears to be a remark-
ably unsophisticated fraud,"
Rothstein added, pointing out
that "it's not clear where
investors' money was invested."
U.S. federal and Florida
authorities said Theodule is
not a registered stock broker
or financial advisor.

U.S. immigration raid...

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* Take a brisk walk at your neighborhood park
* Keep your mind fit, check out your neighborhood library

For more ideas about health and fitness,
go to and click on "Resident" or call 3-1-1.


ne ws I

Ex-Jamaica RM. Seaga hospitalized in Florida with respiratory problems

Former Jamaica Prime
Minister Edward Seaga
was admitted to a hospi-
tal in the United States on
New Year's Day.
Seaga, 78, who was prime
minister under a Jamaica
Labour Party (JLP) adminis-

tration from 1980 to 1989,
was reportedly rushed to a
South Florida institution com-
plaining of respiratory prob-
Details of his medical
condition had not been
released up to press time.

Haitian refugees nabbed in Florida

However, sources in Jamaica
said Seaga, a distinguished fel-
low at the University of the
West Indies, Mona campus,
was under medical observa-
tion for at least a few days.
Reports indicated that he was
subsequently released from
the hospital and was believed
to have returned to his home
in Jamaica.

Often a controversial fig-
ure on Jamaica's political
scene, Seaga led the JLP
through a tough period in
which it suffered four consec-
utive general election defeats
between 1989 and 2005 at the
hands of the People's National
Party (PNP).
He stepped down as
leader of the JLP in 2005 to

take up the academic post at
UWI and was replaced by
Bruce Golding as leader of
the JLP, which came to power
in the Sept. 2007 general elec-

Compiled from several
reports, including CMC.

Police in the United
States detained 14
Haitian refugees who
landed in a fishing boat early
this month at an inlet in the
southern state of Florida.
The Haitians came in on
the 26-foot Ocean Runner
fishing boat that headed
straight from the Boynton
Beach inlet to Boat Club Park,
near Miami, the police said.
"The call came in from a
good Samaritan notifying that
a boat was coming in and had
a large group of Haitians lay-
ing down," said Sergeant
Phillip Hawkins, of the
Boynton Beach police.
"When the driver landed,
he jumped off and fled."
Noel A. Manheimer, a
supervisor with the Marine
Interdiction Agent in South
Florida, said police detained
the 14 Haitians, who were
taken to the Border Patrol
Station in nearby Riviera
Beach. Manheimer said the
immigrants most likely came
through The Bahamas since
" 11L were carrying paper-
work from Bahamian customs.
"That's usually the case
with small boats," he said.

South Florida Marine
Officer Gregg Koch said he
was monitoring a public access
VHF channel when someone
reported seeing a boat with
possible immigrants in the
area. He said police quickly
set up a perimeter, and he
spotted the empty boat in an
alcove near the boat ramp.
Koch said officers found the
14 Haitians hiding throughout
the park and ramps. He said

Two Jamaicans, one a
trainee pilot, were
killed following a mid-
air collision last month in
South Florida.
Stuart Brown, a 25-year-
old flight student attending the
Pelican Flight Training Center
in the United States, was the
pilot of a single-engine Cessna
172R which collided with a
twin-engine Piper 44 on Dec.
6. Both planes plunged into

officers and police dogs, with
assistance from the Palm
Beach Country Sheriff's
Office helicopter, spent the
next hour searching for the
boat's captain but were unsuc-
Meantime, the city of
Miami Gardens has unani-
mously passed a resolution
urging the George W. Bush
administration to provide
Temporary Protected Status
(TPS) to Haitian immigrants
in the U.S.
"It defies logic that the
U.S. government has not pro-
vided TPS to Haitian nation-
als residing in the U.S. in the
same way that they have pro-
vided that status to other for-
, IgiiL r, the city council
According to U.S. law,
TPS may be granted when
there is ongoing armed con-
flict posing a serious threat to
personal safety; it is requested
by a foreign state that tem-
porarily cannot handle the
return of nationals due to
environmental disaster; or
when "extraordinary and tem-
porary conditions in a foreign
state exist, which prevent
aliens from returning".
Immigration advocates in
Florida have been appealing
to the Bush administration to
afford impoverished, hurri-
cane-ravaged Haiti the same
status that was accorded immi-
grants from Nicaragua and
Honduras after Hurricane
Mitch in 1998; and El Salvador
immigrants after it suffered
the effects of two earthquakes
within one month in 2001.

the Florida Everglades in
Broward County.
Brown, along with passen-
ger Edson Jefferson, also a
Jamaican, were killed.
Up to press time the cause
of the collision was not known.
According to reports,
Brown attended flight school
in Jamaica up to late 2005
before moving to the U.S. to
continue his training.

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Mat .4 SALe


Florida plane crash

kills two Jamaicans

January 2009




n e WS

Son of American actors dies in The Bahamas

~ 16-y-o suffers seizure, falls during family vacation, according to lawyer

NASSAU, Bahamas, CMC -
The 16-year-old son of
American actors John
Travolta and his actress wife
Kelly Preston died in The
Bahamas early
this month,
their lawyer
has confirmed.
Ossi said that
Jett Travolta
died after suf-
fering a seizure
while vacation-
ing with his
family. Travolta
"At this
point, we
know that John Travolta and
Kelly Preston's only son, Jett,
had a seizure," Ossi said.
"All attempts to revive
him were unsuccessful," he
Ossi said Jett Travolta hit
his head after the seizure, but
the exact cause of death is
unknown. An autopsy was
scheduled for Jan. 5.

The lawyer said the body
will be transferred to Ocala,

Florida for burial, adding that
Jett's death "was completely
out of the blue.
"This is the worst day of
John's life," Ossi added,
revealing that the Travoltas
also have an eight-year-old
daughter Ella.
Bahamian police report-
edly said a caretaker at the
West End
resort, where
the Travoltas
were vacation-
ing, found the
teenager .
unconscious in
the bathroom.
Police said
Jett Travolta
was taken by Preston
ambulance to
Rand Memorial Hospital in
Freeport and was pronounced
dead on arrival.
Obie Wilchcomb, former
minister of tourism for The
Bahamas, told reporters Jett's
death was mourned by the staff
and residents of West End,
where the Travoltas were
beloved members of the com-
munity. He said the Travoltas
were in The Bahamas for a

gathering of 60 family and
Reports indicate that Jett
Travolta had a developmental
disability that his parents
linked to Kawasaki disease,
an inflammatory disorder of
the artery walls that most
commonly occurs in young
children and can lead to heart
Preston told U.S. televi-
sion viewers in 2003 that,
when Jett was two, he became
ill with flu symptoms, includ-
ing fever, rashes and swollen
lymph nodes, before a doctor
diagnosed him with Kawasaki
John Travolta gained
fame in the 1970s when he
starred in the television series,
"Welcome Back, Kotter", and
the movies, "Saturday Night
Fever" and "GrL,,, His
career catapulted in 1994 with
his second "Best Actor"
Oscar nomination, for his role
as a hit man in "Pulp Fiction".
Preston has numerous
TV. and movie credits, includ-
ing a supporting role in 1996's
"Jerry Maguire".

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transit information and appearance as the English site.

thWe English-language home page at,
:kon the"Language Chooser" button and select Spanish

D Route schedules,
maps, street names
and landmarks stay
in English.


A service of the Broward County
Board of Commissioners

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January 2009

U.S. seizes cocaine in Caribbean

USVI, CMC United States
authorities are claiming that
their fight against the drugs
trade is heading in the right
direction, after seizingl00 kilo-
grams of cocaine at the Port of
St. John on a ship traveling
from Guyana the second in
the U.S. Virgin Islands recently.
U.S. Drug Enforcement
Administration (DEA) officers
in the USVI said they acted on
a tip from the Canada Border
Services Agency. Special
Agent Waldo Santiago, a
spokesman for the DEA, said
officers from the U.S. territory
in the Caribbean were waiting
when the unidentified ship
from Guyana stopped in St.
Croix late last month.
The officers said they
were particularly interested in
examining some boxed gro-
cery items after it was discov-
ered during the St. John bust
that cocaine was being hidden
inside cardboard boxes.
"They contained some
spice seasoning, and they were
concealed similar to the cargo
that was seized by the Canadian
authorities," Santiago said.
He said that DEA agents

targets owner
States federal investigation
into an alleged gun smuggling
operation is focusing its inter-
est on the owner of a Belizean
security firm.
According to law enforce-
ment authorities here and internal
Los Angeles Police Department
(LAPD) documents, veteran
LAPD officer Johnny Baltazar,
who operates a company by the
name of Elite Security in Belize,
allegedly purchased 10 guns and
over 1,500 rounds of ammunition
and smuggled them into the
Caribbean community (CARI-
COM) member state.
The LAPD has accused
Baltazar, 49, with "exporting
firearms without a license, fail-
ing to declare firearms he
exported and failing to notify
his LAPD superiors that he was
under federal investigation".
According to the claims,
Baltazar bought eight .40 glock
handguns from the LAPD

of Belize firm
Academy Store, and shipped
them along with two other
weapons and 1,530 rounds of
ammunition to Belize.
The LAPD said Baltazar
who serves on the board of
directors of the Oscar Joel
Bryant Foundation, an associ-
ation of African American
employees of the Los Angeles
Police Department has been
suspended with pay, pending a
disciplinary hearing that could
result in his firing.
The court documents said
U.S. federal authorities are
expected to present their find-
ings soon to a grand jury. The
documents state that Baltazar
bought the handguns from the
academy store in Feb. 2007.
They said in July 2007 he placed
them in a safe, along with a pair
of 9-millimeter handguns and
the ammunition, and arranged
to ship them to Belize.


\avor rush O(E$

Emal:inf Soiofosco w .ocoisod~o
ki *m ** io Ma i.In. 3 675N 7 tet- im,`.34 7 S

U.S. gun smuggling probe

discovered the drugs destined
for Canada inside the lining of
the corrugated boxes.

They said the drug was
hidden exactly the same way
authorities in St. John found
276 kilograms in another ship-
"The dog alerted us that
there was something there.
Then, our x-ray technology
actually narrowed down to
where it was," said Santiago,
who credited the discovery to
Canadian authorities.
"It's very elaborate the
way this organization took
their time and concealed this
cocaine individually."
Up to press time there
were no arrests in the most
recent seizure, but Santiago
said his agency expects
authorities in Guyana to coop-
erate with the investigation.
The latest seizure brings
the amount of cocaine seized
as a result of the investigation
to 376 kilograms, with an esti-
mated street value of $54.5


The United States is in trouble;

immigrants are part of solution

Among the more prom-
ising candidates being
bruited for appoint-
ment to President-elect
Obama's Cabinet is Arizona
Governor Janet Napolitano,
who some believe is on the
short list for secretary of
Security. She
would be a
good choice,
not only for
her wisdom as
a border state
leader but also
because she
seems to get MARY
that an educat- SANCHEZ
ed workforce is
the key to eco-
The one time I heard
Napolitano speak in person, she
pounded home her view that
America needs to seize a
"Sputnik moment." That is, we
need to grasp how far behind
the rest of the world our stu-
dents are falling in educational
achievement in technology, the
sciences and math. I agree. We
are at the beginning of a painful
national reality check, and the
time to act is now.
Under the Obama admin-
istration, the secretary of
Homeland Security will be well
positioned to encourage the
necessary shifts in attitude, so
that policy begins to match
some of our nation's most
cherished beliefs about our-
selves. Such as that we are "a
nation of immigrants" and the
"land of opportunity".
Let's leave aside for the
moment the passionate feel-
ings about immigrants who are
among us illegally and consider
some facts outlined in a new
report by the Migration Policy
Institute. For instance: "About
one in three immigrants is a
person with either a U.S. or
foreign college degree". So
much for the image of huddled
undereducated masses slipping
across borders.

One in six members of
America's 130 million-person
labor force came to our shores
an immigrant. In 2007, 15 per-
cent of all college graduates in
the U.S. labor force were
immigrants. Of the 6.5 million
college-educated foreign born,
one-third arrived in the last 10
years. About 18 percent of col-
lege-educated immigrants were
of Latino descent.
And here is the statistic
that ought to embarrass U.S.
citizens by birth: College-edu-
cated immigrants are more
likely than native-born gradu-
ates to achieve postgraduate
degrees. And they are far
more likely to be educated in

high-tech, science or engineer-
ing all areas vital to sustain-
ing the nation in the future.
If Napolitano takes the
helm at Homeland Security, the
agency that handles immigra-
tion, she will have the power to
make the most of what these
immigrants can offer. Time will
be on her side. Obama will have
plenty of other seas to calm
before any real overhaul of
immigration law can occur. It's
unlikely to happen in his first
year in office.
But that just might give
Napolitano the time to pursue
the difficult work of changing
public perception about what
immigrants offer. They ought to
be viewed not as competitors but
as stimulators to the economy.
Bill Gates understands that fact.
Along with other chief executive
officers, he hounded Congress
last year to increase the numbers
of highly educated immigrants
allowed entry into the U.S. In
2007, the 65,000 visas allowed for
this group of immigrants were
spoken for within the first four
months of the fiscal year.

The denied immigrants
could have become catalysts
and coworkers of native-born
Consider this other fact
from the report: More than 1.3
million college-educated immi-
grants were underutilized in the
U.S. labor market in 2005-2006.
Meaning, many of those
who are here are not being
used to the best of their abili-
ties. And you can bet that
means the trickle-down job cre-
ation that comes from the high-
ly educated and motivated
classes did not occur. And that
hurts U.S.-born people as well,
including those sons and daugh-
ters who have long forgotten or
never knew that their teeming
immigrant fr flluLih r, did not
speak perfect English.
Every economic downturn
in U.S. history has produced a
backlash against the most
recent immigrant arrivals. But
maybe this time it can be dif-
ferent. America needs more
than ever to retool itself for
future economic growth.
Immigrants are a source of
innovation and inspiration that
can help us rebound just as
they always have been.

This article was first posted on
Dec. 18, 2008. Janet
Napolitano has been named
President-elect Barack
Obama's designate for secre-
tary of Homeland Security.

2008, The Kansas City Star.
Distributed by Tribune Media

I E W P 0 I I

he abuse of power has
infected man from the
dawn of time, and as
they always say, I >\\ %% r cor-
rupts and absolute power cor-
rupts absolutely."
Anyone who dominates
another, relentlessly and with-
out mercy, abuses their power.
And the victims live with their
secret shame.
Usually it's women who
seem to be always abused by
men, at least that's what we
are made to believe. But
what's even more secret and
more shameful, are the many
men who live under the rule
of domineering women.
Yes, believe it or not, they
exist, and they suffer in
silence, even as they bury
their sorrow in a glass of rum.
It's bad enough when a man
dominates a woman I am
totally against it but when a
woman dominates a man, it
goes against all natural laws
and all that is holy.
Think about it, "Man
beats wife". Bad as it may
sound, it's not really news.
After all, it happens all the
time. But,"Woman beats hus-
band" is reason to pour
ridicule, scorn and derision on



rful, abusive women

the poor
helpless, har-
husband who
would rather
die of shame
before he
called police TONY
on her. ROBINSON
Imagine him
at the police
station, and the cops'

"Say what, yu wife beat
yu up again?
Hahahahahahahaha, come, we
will escort yu home, so hide
behind us."

And so they live in
shame, afraid more of the
derision from society, than of
the constant, perennial, pum-
meling from their pugilistic

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v 1 6w 0

* "We've declared assets. Now is
the time for us to declare our
sexuality" ruling Democratic
Labour Party member Patrick
Todd last month demanding that
Barbados's parliamentarians take
a lead role in the fight against
HIV and AIDS by publicly
declaring their sexual orientation.

* "At any rate, why are we dis-
cussing a successor? There is no
vacancy" Trinidad and
Tobago's Prime Minister Patrick

Manning sounding
confident in his
recovery last month
before departing
for Cuba to under-
go surgery to
remove a cancerous

* "We ask you Lord to let them
take the bribes and vote them
out" Father ( I,., I.. Willock last
month urging Opposition
Antigua Labour Party (ALP)
supporters to accept i.-iJ..
offered to them in the lead-up to
the general elections. The
Anglican ( h,,lit. moved to dis-
tance itself from the priest's state-

* "We are far
from those
moments in which
it was possible to
isolate Cuba" -
Cuban Leader
Raul Castro prais-
ing CriMbbean,
countries for standing behind his
communist nation when others
would not.

* "We are a part of the global
community, and if the roof of
the global economy falls in, we
too could get wet when the rain
comes pouring in" Prime
Minister Denzil Douglas saying
recently that although the St. Kitts
and Nevis economy remains

resilient, the country must remain
watchful of the global financial

* "There are lots of treasures in
the Caribbean and we have to do
a better job of really presenting
it" St. Kitts and Nevis Tourism
Minister Rickey Skerritt warning
that increasing competition from
new and emerging markets
should serve as a wake-up call for
the Caribbean.

* "They must get a signal that
the governments are serious, the
politicians are serious, the people
are serious...and that we mean
business. We must demand
respect from them immediately

Powerful, abusive women

Battered man, abused hus-
band, Manto, Boy, wimp,
wuss, p.. .y whipped. So many
words are used to describe the
horrors that many men have
to live through, and they are
real. When I showed my
friend the definition of female
spousal abuse, he said all that
was missing was a photograph
of his wife beside it.
"My God man, I can't
make a move, I can't do a
Ii/ q,. the woman is like a
prison warden in my life."
That, plus the look of
obvious distress on the man's

face made me realize that that
I was standing face to face
with a living breathing victim
of an abusive woman. Clearly,
women are not socialized to
dominate and abuse men. It
goes against their nature, as
they are genetically pro-
grammed to nurture, mother
and cater to men. It's the nat-
ural order. So when you have
a woman who displays this
beast-like attitude to her man,
it is cause for concern. After
all, when woman bites dog, it's
big news, not the other way
I am here to tell you that

there are countless men living
in fear of their women, men
who look big and strong on
the outside, have high pow-
ered jobs, but cannot and dare
not make a move or a decision
without asking their wives'
We see the comic strips,
Maggie and Jiggs, and we
chuckle, where the husband
has to sneak in the house late
at night and she calls him
'insect' and clobbers him with
a rolling pin. He is deathly
afraid of her, and so are many
men, afraid of their women in
real life. It is no laughing mat-

ter for some, and they will say,
"What is joke to you is death
to bullfrog."

There are women who
completely and totally domi-
nate their men and every
aspect of their lives. Come
payday, the man has to hand
over the pay check and wait
diligently on his subsistence. It
falls under the guise that,
"She controls the finances and
knows how to make a dollar
stretch." But in reality, it's the
golden rule in effect, which
means that she who has the
gold, makes the rules. She
then decides how much he
gets to spend, while she has
dominion over his life and can
spend on whatever she wants,
without his knowledge.
She who controls the
purse strings does not wear
the apron strings, and money
is independence. She decides
how the house is run, what is
bought, what they eat, when
they go out, where they go
and how long they stay. Just
look for the signs. If and when
they do go out, she is the one
who says, "Okay, it's time to
leave now." No buts about it,
he has to go.
If perchance he deigns to
go out by himself, his noose
extends via the modern tech-
nology of the cell phone,
which he better have on all the
time. How often we have seen
these men, out having a good
time, when, 'riiiinnnng', his
cell phone goes off, and after
answering it, speaking softly of
course, he sheepishly looks up
and says, "Well, I have to go
now, see you guys whenever."
It's no emergency, no seri-
ous problem, just the domi-
neering wife beckoning her
subject to find his ass home
before it's too late. If those
women had their way, they
would implant a tracking
device like they have on vehi-
cles and prisoners, on their
men instead.

You'd be amazed at how
many men are put on the

clock by these domineering
women, and it's so subtle and
innocuous, that the victims
hardly even see it. But after a
while, the men become
trained, conditioned like
Pavlov's dogs to a conditioned
reflex, and respond without
knowing why they do what
they do. So by 10 p.m., the
reflex is to look at his watch
and declare, "Oh my, look at
the time, I have to go now."
He is the victim of a pow-
erful abusive woman but does-
n't even know it. He cannot
know it, he cannot admit to it,
as society will not allow it. So
he lives in denial, saying
instead that he's tired, and
wants to go home.
But why do men allow
this? One theory is that they
were victims of powerful abu-
sive mothers, and are there-
fore conditioned to live under
rule of thumb, swapping one
despot, one tyrant for another
when they get married. These
men cannot exist without hav-
ing a Harridan lording it over
their lives. So even though
they may live lives of quiet
desperation, or even complain
bitterly, or try to drown their
sorrows, the fact is, they are
part and parcel of the whole,
and are willing contributors to
the mistress servant scenario.
The powerful abusive
woman rules supreme. She
dictates if and when they have
sex, and who goes on top, how
many kids they will have, and
the ultimate insult, what he
should watch on TV.
"Enough sports, let's watch
something more uplifting like
Home & Gardening TV"
They may not breathe
fire, have horns on their
heads, or look like dragons,
but these damsels do distress
their men. Some may shout at
them, others even physically
abuse them, but for most we'll
never know, for the powerful
abusive woman is as silent,
deep and dangerous as the
depths of Hades.

seidol@hotmail. com

i nT

Entries must include the writer's full name, address and telephone number. Each writer is
allowed one entry. Look out for the name of the winner and the winning composition,
which will be published in the March 2009 issue of Caribbean Today.

': .
Send entries via e-mail to: or address them to:

9020 S.W. 152nd Stree Miami, FL 33157, USA
9020 S.W. 152nd Street, Miami, FL 33157, USA

January 2009

and if they do not give it, we
must take it" Nevis Premier
Joseph Parry last month calling
for a zero tolerance approach to
gang violence in the twin island
federation of St. Kitts and Nevis.

* "It is very unfortunate that
something like this has happened
again" Bishop Herro Blair, head
of the Peace Management Initiative
in Jamaica, last month /I. ..' i.,,'
the situation in two 1. -i,,u/.." com-
munities where residents have been
forced to flee their homes in fear.

Compiled from CMC and other


1lln ILT T 1

Eating healthier, cheaper in tougher

times by cooking from scratch

By the way, doctor: What is the

healthiest amount of sleep?

Here's something to
chew on: It's easier for
older people to save
substantially on their grocery
bills if they will switch from
boxed or prepared foods to
cooking from scratch.
Janet Little, nutritionist
for Henry's Farmers Market,
says families of four can eat on
$75 a week and older folks on
just about half that if the cooks
do a little planning ahead.
With the Food Marketing
Institute estimating families in
the United States spending a
minimum of $115 a week on
groceries, shaving $40 a week
from the bill saves about
$2,000 a year, she says.
Even better: By choosing
to purchase raw ingredients to
prepare meals at home, con-
sumers can better ensure that
they are getting their recom-
mended daily allowance of
nutrients, instead of the hard-
er to determine dietary con-
tents of pre-packaged and
processed foods.

Question: You say the secret is
planning ahead?
Answer: Planning ahead is
going to save you money.
When we don't have a plan,
we spend more money at the
grocery and we buy things we
may not use and so the food

By choosing to purchase
raw ingredients to prepare
meals at home, consumers
can better ensure that they
are getting their recom-
mended daily allowance of
nutrients, instead of the
harder to determine dietary
contents of pre-packaged
and processed foods.

rots. When you plan a meal
you can stretch the food for
three days.

Q: How do you do that?
A: Buy a whole chicken or
two depending on the size of
the family. Roast the chicken
and serve it with broccoli and
brown rice. The next day,
make chicken enchiladas or a
casserole. Then there's soup
and salad. One item stretched
into three different meals.

Q: Got recipes?
A: Of course. Go to www.hen- for lots of

Q: You also tout other what
we would call "old fashioned"
A: Yes, like oats. You can buy
them in bulk at Henry's for 79

cents a pound. They help
lower cholesterol and one
pound will probably last you a
whole week.

Q: Other suggestions?
A: It's crazy to buy the 100-
calorie snack packs. Buy
something similar in bulk and
it's a fraction of the cost. Or
save money by going meatless
once in a while. One of the

Effective planning of your grocery shopping ca
bi_-L,,_I food expenses is meat.

Q: But we need protein.
A: Rely on eggs. They are a
great source of protein. I
always have a dozen at my
house. Hard-boiled eggs are
great snack items. There is
some cholesterol, but also the
yolk contains lecithin and
lutene, so it's kind of a wash.

Q: Well, I don't have the time to
cook every day, as I once did.
A: Then make a dish and
freeze half of it. Eat the
frozen half a couple of weeks
later and it won't make you
think of leftovers.

Q: We have gotten ourselves
hooked on convenience foods,
haven't we?
A: Here are some tips for
trimming the fat from your
grocery spending.
* Plan out meals. Only buy
the ingredients for meals in
your weekly plan.
* Pay attention. Stock up on
staples when they go on sale.
* Reduce driving. Don't go to
multiple stores to save a few
* Buy from bulk bins. Buy just
what you need.
* Minimize prepared and
processed foods and avoid
waste. Eat perishables first.
* Freeze your meals in portion
* Look for budget-conscious

* Consider meatless meals.
* Choose local and in-season
foods which are typically
priced lower.

Q: Some things you can't save
on, however.
A: Right. You might as well
buy milk by the gallon. It's
cheaper. You can buy by the
half, but your price goes up.

an save lots of money.
Q: Are there tricks to keeping
produce fresh?
A: Here's one. Most fruits
release ethylene gas. And
most vegetables receive the
gas. So store them separately
in the refrigerator. That trick
right there will save you from
having so much rotten fruit.

Jane Glenn Haas writes for
The Orange County
(California) Register. E-mail
2008, The Orange County
Register (Santa Ana, Califomia).

Distributed by McClatchy-
Tribune Information Services.

"' Cosmetic

Member American Dental Association
Most Insurance Accepted

6701 Sunset Drive, Suite 114
KSouth Miami, FL 33143

Question: I heard about a
study that found people who
sleep six and a half to seven
hours a night will live longer
than those sleeping eight to
nine. What is the right amount
of sleep?

Answer: You're asking an
important question, but it's
hard to answer, and here's
Consider the perfect study
to answer the question. First,
you would recruit a large num-
ber of people say, about
100,000. Then you'd randomly
assign some of them to sleep
five hours a night, others six,
others eight, and so on. You'd
also have to figure out some
way to make sure people stick
with their assigned sleep
amounts. Then you'd carefully
monitor the health of the
study participants for
You can see how impracti-
cal such a perfect study would
be. So what we have instead
are observational studies that,
after following people for many
years, find statistical associa-
tions between habits and health
outcomes. A number of these
studies have asked the partici-
pants about their sleeping
habits. Not all of the results
agree, but most Iu-"',_LI that the
farther away you get from the
I\\ L L I spot" of six to eight

But observational studies
can't prove causality, so they
can't show, for example, that
changing from five hours of
sleep a night to six or seven
for the next 20 years will help
you live longer. An excellent
study from the University of
Pennsylvania in the United
States found that people who
sleep less than eight hours a
night have lower cognitive
performance than people who
sleep eight hours or more. If
that's true, maybe you should
sleep eight and a half hours
nightly if your goal is to be
clearheaded, but six to seven if
your goal is longevity!
What do I do? As a rule, I
sleep seven hours weeknights
and eight hours on weekends,
because those are the amounts I
need to feel best. All of the stud-
ies I've talked about give "on
average" answers. However,
we're all different, and some
people need more sleep than
others. I think you can figure
out what your personal sleep
requirements are by listening to
the wisdom of your body.

Dr. Anthony L. Komaroff is
editor in chief, Harvard
Health Letter. 2008
Copyright Harvard Health

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January 2009


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U.S. businesses want Obama to lift embargo against Cuba

leading United States business
organizations has urged
President-elect Barack
Obama to initiate the process
of scrapping the 46-year-old
economic embargo against
"We support the complete
removal of all trade and travel
restrictions on Cuba", the
group, which includes the U.S.
Chamber of Commerce, said
in an open letter to Obama
last month.

"We recognize that
change may not come all at
once, but it must start some-
where, and it must begin
The organizations told
Obama, who will be sworn in
as U.S. president on Jan. 20,
that it was "simply wrong"
that American citizens are
free to travel to North Korea
or Iran but not to the
Caribbean island.
Obama had promised,
during the presidential cam-

paign, that he would scrap the
regulations sharply limiting
the ability of Cuban
Americans to visit their home-
land or to send money and
goods to family members in
the Spanish-speaking country.
Obama's election victory
has also fuelled calls to nor-
malize relations with Cuba.
Jake Colvin, vice presi-
dent of the U.S. National
Foreign Trade Council, said
the letter to the U.S. presi-
dent-elect, who will officially

St. Lucia hosts Caribbean Marketplace 2009

Hundreds of tourism busi-
-|ness interests are sched-
t led to attend
"Caribbean Marketplace 2009"
this month in Gros Islet, St. Lucia.
The Caribbean Hotel and
Tourism Association (CHTA),
together with the St. Lucia
Hotel and Tourism Association
and the St. Lucia Tourist
Board, will host the event, Jan.
18-20, for the first time in the
Eastern Caribbean.
Caribbean Marketplace
provides a forum for business
meetings that match buyers
and suppliers through a com-
puterized program of appoint-
ments, making it easier to
conduct business meetings.
More than 1,000 supplier dele-
gates representing 381 suppli-

er companies from 32 coun-
tries, in addition to the 369
buyer delegates from 148
companies representing 22
countries, attended last year's
event. In 2008, CHTA report-
edly pre-scheduled 16,172
appointments before the start
of last year's marketplace.
Supplier participation at
Caribbean Marketplace 2009
requires the purchase of a
In addition to CHTA and
St. Lucia, sponsors of Caribbean
Marketplace 2009 include:
American Express, Caribbean
Travel & Life, Foster's Group,
Interval International, Pegasus
Solutions, Starwood Caribbean
Collection and Virgin Holidays.
For more information, call

CHTA at 305-443-3040,
e-mail: events@caribbeanhote- or visit

assume office on Jan. 20, was
signed by a number of busi-
ness groups, including the
American Farm Bureau
Federation, Business
Roundtable, National Retail
Federation and Grocery
Manufacturers Association.
The letter cites a 2001 govern-
ment report that Cuba embar-

go was costing U.S. exporters
up to $1.2 billion annually in
lost sales.
A poll released last
month showed that 55 percent
of Miami's Cuban Americans
said the U.S. should end the
economic embargo, while 65
percent said Washington
should re-establish diplomatic
ties with the island.
The Caribbean communi-
ty (CARICOM) recently sup-
ported a United Nations'
General Assembly resolution
- in its 17th year running -
calling for end of the econom-
ic embargo against Cuba.
CARICOM said the "punitive
embargo" is of particular con-
cern since it shares a "history,
culture and brotherhood with
the people of Cuba".

ExUIkQir Ikaw

Air Jamaica Brings

Air Jamaica intensifies U.S.

search for partner

NEW YORK Air Jamaica is
scouring the United States
market in the hope of finding
a new Ir.lgI" partner that
can help the cash-strapped
carrier turn around its eco-
nomic fortunes.
"Whether the partner is
another airline, a hotel com-
pany or even a financial com-
pany, the goals must be in
sync: Maintain the brand and
its value in the marketplace,
and put the airline in a solid
financial position," said Bruce
Nobles, the new president and
chief executive officer of the
He stressed that while Air
Jamaica was seeking a partner
that can put capital into the
airline which has racked up
billions of dollars in debt, "it
must be a strategic partner-
During his recent visit to
the U.S., Nobles was dis-
cussed the current status and
future plans for the airline
with consumers, members of
the travel industry and the
media. He said the airline's
name and brand would
remain unchanged under the
divestment program, which is
scheduled to take place in


Nobles also said Air
Jamaica was committed to
serving the needs of the
Jamaican community. He
described Air Jamaica as a
"large and important compo-
nent" of Jamaica's gross
domestic product (GDP), pro-
viding 2,000 jobs and bringing
50 percent of the visitors to
the island.
Nobles said the airline
does not have any immediate
plans to start flying to new
destinations and was currently
evaluating which of its current
destinations "make sense and
which do not from an eco-
nomic and passenger demand
Last year, Air Jamaica
lost $170 million, and this year
it is projected to lose another
$200 million.

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SLionel Richie The O'jays Maxi Priest
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January 2009



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Florida church to host King

'Live the Dream' celebration

Educator Delores Mixon
Smiley will deliver the
keynote address at the
12th annual "Dr. Martin
Luther King, Jr. CL k hraln 'ii
sponsored by the Plantation
Committee in South Florida.
This year's event, which
carries the theme "Live the
Dream Yes We Can!", will
be held at 3 p.m. Jan. 18 at
Plantation United Methodist
Church, 1001 N.W. 70th Ave.
in Plantation.
Dr. King's birthday will be
celebrated in the United
States with a national holiday
on Jan. 19.
Smiley is dean in the Office
of Community Education and
Diversity Affairs at Nova
Southeastern University's
Fischler Graduate School of
Education and Human
Smiley has written a mas-
ter of science degree program
in instructional design and
diversity education, which was
launched in 2008. She is cur-
rently writing diversity train-
ing programs, which will be
offered internally and exter-
nally online and onsite.
As a result of a guberna-
torial appointment, Dr. Smiley
sits on the board of directors
for the Florida Fund for
Minority Teachers. She also

served for five years as presi-
dent of the Albion, Michigan
branch of the NAACP For
the year 2007-2008, she was
named "Executive of the
Year" at Nova Southeastern
University (NSU).
Dr. Smiley has been
included in the "Who's Who
in Black South Florida".
The MLK celebration will
also feature special guest,
retired Lieutenant Colonel
Eldridge Williams, a World
War II veteran.
The annual event is held
to honor Dr. King's vision and
dream. His legacy will be
remembered through words,
music, song, and dance, with
performances by local schools,
churches, and houses of wor-
ship. A special feature of the
program is the elementary
schools' student essay compe-
tition themed, "Live the
Dream," sponsored and
judged by Friends of the
Helen B. Hoffman Library.
A reception will follow
the ceremony in the
Fellowship Hall.
The community celebration
is free and the public is invited.
For more information, call Dr.
Ruby Lobban at 954-749-7864
or Plantation United Methodist
Church at 954-584-7500.

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~ A Caribbean Today special feature

MLK memorial fund gets $1 M boost

of the top health insurance
companies in the United
States has made a $1 million
donation to the Washington,
D.C. Martin Luther King, Jr.
National Memorial Project
Foundation, Inc.
Harry E. Johnson, presi-
dent and chief executive officer
of the foundation and former
U.S. Secretary of State General
Colin Powell, a member of the
foundation's Executive
Leadership Cabinet, participat-
ed in last month's ceremony,
which included presentation of
a check by UnitedHealth
Group's Executive Vice
President Anthony Welters.
According to Gen.
Powell, UnitedHealth's dona-
tion adds to the momentum
surrounding the foundation's
fundraising effort.
"Sustaining the legacy of
Martin Luther King, Jr. for
our children through the cre-
ation of this memorial is a

The activist who
Martin Luther King Jr.
Day is a United
States holiday mark-
ing the date of birth (Jan. 15,
1929) of the Reverend Dr.
Martin Luther King, Jr. It is
observed on the third Monday
in January each year.
In 2009, King Day will be
celebrated on Jan. 19 and will
take on an added significance
as it will precede the day
when Barack Obama, the first
black American president, is
inaugurated at noon Jan. 20
on the steps of the west front
of the U.S. Capitol building in
Washington D.C.

How Dr. Martin Luther King
Day happened
United States President
Ronald Reagan signed a bill
into law in the Rose Garden
15 years after Dr. King's
death, making the third
Monday of January a national
holiday to celebrate the birth
and life of Dr. Martin Luther
King, Jr.
But it was a rough journey.
Martin Luther King Day
was first observed in 1986.
Not all U.S. states observed
the holiday and others gave it
a different name. King Day
was only officially observed in

cause we are honored to sup-
port," said Welters. "The val-
ues of equality and social
change that Dr. King champi-
oned inspire UnitedHealth
Group's commitment each day
to advancing social responsi-
bility and diversity in ways
that foster a healthy society
and a healthy company."
The check presentation
took place at the National

Building Museum, which
houses the foundation, which
has raised $102 million out of
the needed $120 million.
UnitedHealth Group joins
several other major donors to
the foundation. The founda-
tion has submitted its design
and financial documents to
the National Park Service and
is awaiting a construction per-
mit. The memorial is sched-
uled to be completed approxi-
mately 20 months following
the beginning of construction.
The foundation is behind
building a memorial in
Washington D.C. honoring Dr.
Martin Luther King, Jr. It will
be built on the National Mall,
adjacent to the Franklin
Delano Roosevelt Memorial
and in a direct line between
the Lincoln and Jefferson
Edited from Black PR Wire

showed 'universal, unconditional love'

Dr. King was 39 when he
was assassinated on April 4,
1968 at the Lorraine Motel in
Memphis, Tennessee. Yet that
did not slow the Civil Rights
Movement in the U.S.
The late Coretta Scott
King, the widow of the civil
rights leader, was an activist in
her own right. In 1970, she
established the Martin Luther
King Jr. Memorial Center in
Atlanta, Georgia. This "living
memorial" consists of his boy-
hood home and the Ebenezer
Baptist Church, where Dr.
King is buried.
Scott King stated on the

website of the King Center:
"On this Martin Luther King
Jr. holiday, we commemorate
the universal, unconditional
love, forgiveness and nonvio-
lence that empowered his rev-
olutionary spirit. The King
Holiday commemorates
America's pre-eminent advo-
cate of nonviolence the man
who taught by his example
that nonviolent action is the
most powerful, revolutionary
force for social change avail-
able to oppressed people in
their struggles for liberation."

all 50 states
for the first
time in 2006.

Opposition to
honoring Dr.
had only hon- King
ored two indi-
viduals with
national holidays George
Washington and Christopher
Columbus, and many felt
there were more worthy peo-
ple. A senator from Georgia
even denounced Dr. King as a

Others feared the King
holiday was meant as a way to
make up to African
Americans for slavery.
Senator Bob Dole pointed out
to those critics "I \I--,-xI they
hurry back to their pocket cal-
culators and estimate the cost
of 300 years of slavery, fol-
lowed by a century or more of
economic, political and social
exclusion and discrimination."
Sen. Jesse Helms led the
opposition to the bill and
questioned whether Dr. King
was important enough to
receive such an honor.

Declaring a national day to honor MLK

Words, 'dream' inspire hope worldwide
As a preacher and civil rights annihilation." 1963.
activist, Dr. Martin Luther "The chain reaction of evil -
King Jr. has been a continuing hate begetting hate, wars pro- "If a man hasn't discovered
inspiration to people all over during more wars must be something that he will die for,
the world. Here are few of his broken, or we shall be he isn't fit to live" 1963.
famous quotes: plunged into the dark abyss of 4

January 2009

January 2009





'Supernova' Bell makes comeback as heavyweight


Jamaican-born boxer
O'Neil Bell will attempt
to revive his ring career
by moving up in weight class
for a bout in South Florida
this month.
Bell, a former undisputed
world cruiserweight champi-
on, will step up to heavy-
weight to fight American
Willie Palms in an eight round
contest at the Seminole Hard
Rock Casino in Hollywood on
Jan. 14.
The fight card is being
billed as "Hard Knocks at the
Hard Rock" by promoters
Seminole Warriors Boxing.
Bell's career has truly
been one of hard knocks. He
left his birthplace of Montego
Bay, Jamaica as a young child
to live with his parents in the
United States. A talented all-
round athlete, he later

dropped out of college to pur-
sue a boxing career.
Although he boasts an
impressive current profession-
al ring record of 26 wins three
losses and a draw, with 24
knockouts, the former "Give
'em Hell" Bell turned
"Supernova" has struggled
recently, losing his last two
fights as a cruiserweight.

In Mar. 2007 he was beat-
en by Jean Marc Mormeck in
France, losing his hold on the
World Boxing Association
and World Boxing Council
cruiserweight titles he had
taken from Mormeck by
knocking out the Frenchman
just over a year earlier in New
York. In April last year he
suffered a technical knockout
loss to Poland's Tomasz
Adamek in an eliminator bout
for the International Boxing

Federation title.
The big punching ex-
champion, who currently
resides the Atlanta-area of
Georgia, recently told
Caribbean Today that he
decided to move up in class to
attract more lucrative fights in
the more competitive and
higher profile heavyweight
division. He was also report-
edly known to struggle with
making the 190-pound weight
requirement for a cruiser-
weight. He claims he will have
no such problems as a heavy-
"I'll be ready," Bell told
Caribbean Today last month
of his preparation for his
upcoming bout.

Gordon Williams is Caribbean
Today's managing editor.

Jamaica crowned Caribbean soccer kings

Jamaica shrugged off the
disappointment of being
booted from the next
World Cup by winning the
2008 Digicel Caribbean
Goals by Luton Shelton,
both from the penalty spot,
earned the Reggae Boyz their
fourth regional title, defeating
Grenada 2-0 in the final last
month at the National
Stadium in Kingston.
Both penalties were
awarded following fouls on
Eric Vernan, who was named
most valuable player of the
tournament. The win also
earned Jamaica a prize of
It was the second Digicel
Championship win for Jamaica
in three years and added to
regional titles the Boyz won in
1991, 1998 and 2005. The result
also gave Jamaica's coach John
Barnes a winning start to his
"I am delighted for
myself, I am delighted for the
team and the country," said
the former England interna-
tional and Liverpool legend.

Barnes, 45, said the quali-

Caribbean Football Union President Austin "Jack" Warner hands the Digicel Caribbeal
Championship trophy to Jamaica's captain Tyrone Marshall. At left is Captain Horace
Burrell, president of the Jamaica Football Federation.

ty of play in the final by the
Jamaicans was not their best
of the tournament. However,
he was pleased the result land-
ed them championship honors.
"Overall it's been a
hard tournament," he said.
"Grenada came out and did
very well. Yes, we got a bit slop-
py during the game but overall
I am very happy right now."
Grenada collected $70,000
for the runner-up prize and
captain Anthony Modeste was
gracious in defeat.
"Congratulations to the
Reggae Boyz, they are deserv-

ing champions," he said.
"If we couldn't have the
trophy there is no one else we
would want to have it," added
Modeste, who plays in Jamaica
with Portmore FC.
Earlier, in the third place
play-off Guadeloupe beat Cuba
5-4 on penalties. All of the top
four teams have qualified for
the CONCACAF Gold Cup in
the United States this summer.
Recently Jamaica failed to
make to the final round of
CONCACAF World Cup 2010

13 West Indians for Cricket Hall of Fame

The International Cricket
Council (ICC) has
named 13 West Indies
players for induction into its
Cricket Hall of Fame, which it
launched as part of the ICC's
centenary year celebrations.
The West Indies inductees
as they appear on the ICC's
list in alphabetical order are:
spinner Lance Gibbs, batsmen
Gordon Greenidge and

George Headley, fastbowler
Michael Holding, batsmen
Rohan Kanhai and Clive
Lloyd, fastbowler Malcolm
Marshall, batsman Vivian
Richards, fastbowler Andy
Roberts, all-rounder Garfield
Sobers, batsmen Clyde
Walcott, Everton Weekes and
Frank Worrell.


Caribbean hoops star shines

in U.S. women's pro league


KINGSTOWN, St. Vincent,
CMC St. Vincent and the
Grenadines (SVG) isk L- ill
Diva" Sophia Young went home
for a Christmas vacation with her
family after another standout
campaign in the United States'
Women's National Basketball
Association (WNBA) season.
The talented Young helped
her team San Antonio Silver
Stars to the final of the WNBA,
where they lost 3-0 to the
Detroit Shock. She told CMC
Sports that losing the final was
disappointing and she could not
pinpoint a reason for surren-
dering so easily to the Shock.
"As an athlete you always
would like to win and when you
don't it is very disappointing...
losing the final and so easily was
one of those moments that
hurt," Young said last month.
"When you look at where
our team came from and reach-
ing the final and not winning
the title which was right there
and needed just for us to grab
it.. .it really was tough.. .any-
way coming so close gives me
more reason for having a good
season in 2009."

Young's heroics were
responsible for taking the
Silver Stars into the final after
hitting a 14-foot turnaround
shot at the buzzer to lift the
Silver Stars to a 67-66 win over
the Los Angeles Sparks, which
forced a deciding Game 3 in
the Western Conference Finals.
Asked if that was the pos-
sible highlight of her career so
far, Young said it was a memo-
rable moment but she was
quick to point out that the
game should have been decid-
ed long before that point.
"We had the game won
more or less having been up by
14 points but just allowed too
many silly things to happen,"
she said.
The Silver Stars are
expected to begin their 2009
season on June 6 at Phoenix
before opening the home slate
June 13 against New York.
According to reports, San
Antonio will play before a
national television audience
twice during the regular season
with a June 23 home match
against Phoenix and an Aug.
29 home game against Detroit,
both on ESPN2.
San Antonio will play 34
regular-season games 17 at
home and 17 away matching
up against each Western
Conference opponent four
times and each Eastern
Conference team twice.
Fans will have to wait until
August to see a rematch of the
2008 WNBA Finals with the
Silver Stars at Detroit on Aug.

Young is shooting for nothing less than a

23 and home against the Shock
on Aug. 29.

Young ended the 2008 sea-
son with an average of 17.7
points per game, augmented
by 5.9 rebounds.
The San Antonio Silver
Stars drafted Young fourth
overall in the 2006 WNBA
Draft. A two-time WNBA All-
Star, Young earned first team
all-WNBA and all-defensive
team honors following the
2008 season after helping San
Antonio to their best record in
franchise history and a
Western Conference title.
The 6-foot-l-inch Young
has now completed three
WNBA seasons after being a
collegiate standout for Baylor
She was voted to the
WNBA All-Star game in 2007
and in her rookie year 2006,
when she led Silver Stars in
both scoring and rebounding.
Young was given one of the
biggest honors in November
when she had her jersey retired
by Baylor University. Young
played for the Baylor Lady
Bears in NCAA, and became a
legend at the school when she
won the Most Outstanding
Player award at the 2005 NCAA
tournament, taking them to
their first title in the process.
Young is the school's all-
time leading scorer with 2,480
points. She said this was her
proudest and most memorable
"It is always good to be rec-
ognized for your contribution
but to have your jersey retired is
just so a player you
always want to leave a legacy
and leave something for people
to remember you by," she said.
Prior to the start of the
start of the 2009 season, the
25-year-old Young, who cele-
brated her birthday on Dec. 15
will return to Greek team
Galatasaray for a second sea-
son in Europe.

January 2009


Culture, nature highlight Jamaica's newest tourist attractions

Take in a lung-full of the
purest air from a majes-
tic panoramic perspec-
tive. Skim 100-foot high tree-
tops with your toes. Marvel at
the beauty of Mother Nature
from the heavens.
This is the breathtaking
experience that beckons
adventurous nature lovers to
Mystic Mountain, Jamaica's
newest attraction nestled
among the lush mountains of
Ocho Rios.
Opened last July, Mystic
Mountain, is sprawled over
100 acres of rain forest with
unique tours taking the adven-
ture seeker hundreds of feet
above sea level in sky lifts,
'flying' through the woodlands
on bobsled rides, and whizzing
across the forest canopy on
tranopy lines stretching from
one end to the other.
The facility also boasts a
pavilion designed to look like
a 1900s Jamaican railway sta-
tion, enhanced with a story-
board display of Jamaican cul-
ture including the "gold" suc-
cess of Usain Bolt and other
Jamaican athletes at the 2008
Beijing Olympics. With a
lookout tower to take in the
magnificent surroundings, a
restaurant/bar, retail shop, and
a small museum highlighting
Jamaican culture, the building
sits unobtrusively among the
tall trees that surround it.
A recent Jamaica Tourist

Not all gloom
CMC Top officials of the
Caribbean Tourism Organization
(CTO) have assured that it was
not all gloom and doom for the
region's bread and butter tourism
sector, even as it grapples with
the effects a global economic
"It's the season of good
cheer, notwithstanding the cur-
rent global eco-
nomic situa-
tion," said
CTO Chairman
Harold Lovell
last month.
reporters at a
news confer- Riley
ence at the
CTO's head-
quarters in Barbados, interim
CTO Secretary General Hugh
Riley was just as optimistic
about the prospects for the
tourism sector.
"The forecast is not as
sunny and bright as we would
want it to be," Riley said, "but
I cannot tell you that there are
storm clouds either. There are
clouds (but) they are not with-
out silver lining."

Skimming' Mystic Mountain offers a breathtaking view.

Board-sponsored tour of this
and other eco-friendly attrac-
tions gave observers the ride
of their lives and revealed
Jamaica's embrace of environ-
mentally responsible tourism.
"We're showing the natu-
ral beauty of the island in a
new, innovative, exciting way,"
declared Barbara Lulich,
Mystic Mountain's marketing
manager. "We operate from a
very serious environmental

The 15-minute sky lift
ride slowly takes visitors
across the property over to
the pavillion, giving them a
chance to see Ocho Rios and
its surroundings from a rare
perspective. Chirping birds
atop the tallest trees and the
sparkling aqua sea below cre-
ate a meditative mood to strip
away the stresses of today's
Interestingly, to avoid cut-
ting roads into the forrest and

for Caribbean tourism ~ CTO

Tourism is a multi-billion
dollar industry for the
Caribbean and the leading
money earner for several small
island economies. Lovell, who
is also the
tourism minis-
ter for Antigua
and Barbuda,
said that the
region really
had no choice
but to meet
the challenges
as they arise Lovell
and to ensure
that the liveli-
hoods of the thousands
throughout the region who
depend on tourism can be pro-
Already, the global eco-
nomic situation has been
blamed for a number of lay-
offs in the sector, with one of
the region's largest hotel
chains, Sandals Resorts, send-
ing home over 600 workers in
Antigua and Barbuda, The
Bahamas, Jamaica and St.
Lucia; while The Bahamas-
based Atlantis hotel has laid
off 800 employees.
Lovell also said that the
unprecedented world econom-
ic crisis has presented the

region with a tremendous
opportunity to bring a sense of
urgency to the much talked
about "One Caribbean" mar-
keting campaign, which has the
aim of shoring up regional
tourism markets. Caribbean
leaders have mandated
tourism officials to raise mil-
lions of dollars to promote the
region as a single destination.

destroying trees, the sky lift
installation, including the
chairs and concrete for the
stop off points, was done
entirely by aerial helicopter
said Lulich, adding, "if what
we're trying to showcase for
our visitors is the beauty of
the forrest, you can't go in and
chop it down."
Another exciting ride
forces visitors to hold on to
their hats. A thousand meters
of track, twisting and turning
around the forest, marks the
popular Jamaica Bobsled ride,
taking explorers on a
roundtrip from the "railroad

station". Amazingly, the stain-
less steel track was hand-car-
ried and installed to protect
the forest.

Adventure seekers can
also "fly" across the property
literally strapped to steel
cables. Helmeted and buckled
on, the five-pronged flight, at
what felt like "lightning"
speed, left a blur of green.
And green it will remain, as
the property owners generate
their own electricity with the
use of fuel that stores the cur-
rent in batteries for nighttime
use. Lulich said the facility
will soon move to wind tech-
nology, generating power from
windmills. She also showed off
the property's waterless com-
posting toilet that utilizes
organic material to turn the
waste into fertilizer for the
healthy forest.
Eager to pass on environ-
mentally-friendly concepts,
the owners have contributed a
million Jamaican dollars to
the Environmental Trust to
educate Grade 6 students on
climate change and the envi-
ronment. Another million
Jamaican dollars went to the
Jamaican Bobsled Federation
to complete their training
facility at G.C. Foster College
in St. Catherine.

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January 2009



Jamaica to introduce CARICOM passport

KINGSTON, Jamaica, CMC -
Jamaica is preparing to launch
the Caribbean community
(CARICOM) passport this

Jennifer McDonald, the
chief executive officer of the
Passport, Immigration and
Citizenship Agency picaA),
said the document will bear the

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CARICOM logo and the words
"Caribbean Community" on
the cover.?The CARICOM
passport will also bear the
country's coat of arms with the
word "Jamaica" as the issuing
state beneath.
CARICOM heads of gov-
ernment have approved of the
issuing of the regional travel
document, which has already
been introduced in several
member states, including
Trinidad and Tobago,
Barbados, St. Vincent and
McDonald said the intro-
duction of the CARICOM
passport this month will not
interfere with the validity of
current passports.

St. Lucia cancels rum

and food festival

CASTRIES, St. Lucia, CMC -
St. Lucia's tourism calendar
suffered its first casualty of
the current global economic
crisis, with officials saying fur-
ther cuts could be made to
events planned for 2009.
Tourism Minister Allen
Chastanet said last month that
the Ministry of Tourism and
the St. Lucia Tourist Board
have been undertaking a
review of its program of
events and decided that the
country was not able to host
its "Rum and Food Iil% II
this month.
Organizer of the festival
Neysha Soodeen, told the
Caribbean Media Corporation
(CMC) that it was disappoint-
ing that the Jan. 15-18 event
was being cancelled due to the

economic downturn and its
impact on the tourism indus-
"While we are disappoint-
ed that the event cannot now
take place before the
Caribbean Marketplace in
January, having had almost all
the planning in place, we do
understand the need to allo-
cate scares financial and tech-
nical resources to other more
vital marketing components of
the island's tourism sector at
this time," Soodeen said.
The event was due to take
place at the same location that
will be used by the Caribbean
Hotel Association (CHA) for
its annual Caribbean Market
Place show on Jan. 18-20.

Culture, nature highlight Jamaica's newest tourist attractions

Adventures is for you. The
fun-packed nature adventure
tours include horseback rid-
ing, canopy tours, river tubing,
adventure and dogsled rides
(with rescued dogs), and dune
buggy tours through the scenic
fishing village of Sandy Bay.
Founded in 1983 by Danny
Melville in Ocho Rios, the so-
called "attraction capital of
the Caribbean", the business
grew, and in 2000 the Melville
family partnered with John
Byles to create what is today
one of the most popular
adventure destinations in the
Caribbean. The company now
has operations in The
Bahamas, Belize, and Turks
and Caicos.
By far, the most popular
ride, at least among the team
of observers, was the dune
buggy that traversed a muddy,
dusty trail through the Sandy
Bay hills to 1,200 feet above
sea level.

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F i
aon A Hill, Esq.
MarloflA itigtionlassell s, *nera

or.o.a6 6. t0 nati* n6 b6 sin ss
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Stop off points gave riders
a stunning view of the far-off
mountains and valleys that
shape the landscape.
Knowledgeable guides point-
ed out herbal plants, fruit
trees, an old dam, and old
plantation ruins that still mark
the unspoiled countryside.
L \ r) employee at
Chukka Caribbean
Adventures has made a
contribution to the success of
our company being able to
reduce its environmental
impact and to continue to
meet the rigorous standards
set by Green Globe," said
Mark Hylton, the company's
general manager. "The natural
attractions of Jamaica and our
other Caribbean destinations
are an integral part of the
tours that we sell. We have to
be responsible caretakers to
ensure these irreplaceable
assets remain intact for future
Some of the future gener-
ation are employed by
Chukka, most of whom live
within 20 kilometers from the

If you are a sea lover, a
soothing yet stimulating cata-
maran cruise is the way to go.
Wildthing Catamaran's sunset
cruise shows the other side of
Jamaica, sailing along Negril
beach and the ragged cliffs
along the way to the famous
Rick's Cafe in search of the
perfect sunset.
With drinks and pounding
reggae music, seafarers count-
ed starfish dotting the bottom
of the crystal clear sea. But,
the ultimate experience was
the brilliant orange sunset
with a backdrop of young
divers plunging into the sea
from the "mile-high" cliff at

the cafe's edge.

Some seek adventure,
some seek thrills, others want
to relive the historic past.
Outameni Experience, in
Coopers Pen, just between
Montego Bay and Ocho Rios,
brings Jamaican culture and
heritage alive with an interac-
tive tour through a Taino,
(Jamaica's first in habitants)
village, a slave ship and living
quarters, Spanish and British
plantation, a rural Chinese
shop, Indian village, and
today's citified Jamaica.
On a directed tour with
Nanny, a spiritual guide, a
group experienced what it was
like when the Spaniards hap-
pened upon Jamaica and the
subsequent extinction of the
Tainos. A moving portrayal of
a slave being whipped and
shackled quieted spectators,
followed by a mulatto planta-
tion manager who reminded
observers of a class system
that still exists today.
Outameni is well named,
for it showcased the many
nationalities that make up the
island nation of Jamaica. The
"Chinie" shops that dot many
country areas and the Indian
village reminded observes of
the indentured laborers that
were brought to Jamaica after
slavery was abolished. The
experience brings it all togeth-
er with a slice of city life fea-
turing a dreadlocked dancer
and his skimpily clad partner
at a "wicked" dancehall party.
One love!

Story and photograph by
Dawn A. Davis, a freelance
writer for Caribbean Today.

January 2009

momm- I ............... ........ ........ -
I T 0 U R I S M / T R n V IE t


........... .....

Haitians celebrate Independence

with Miami music festival Jan. 17

91 -y-o Bermudan actor gets ready

to meet real-life Queen Elizabeth II

It will be staged more than
two weeks after the official
date of Haiti's
Independence, but an annual
United States celebration to
mark the event should be well
worth the wait.
The 2009 Haitian
Independence Festival is set
for Jan. 17 at Bayfront Park,
downtown Miami, Florida.
Presented by Voila, in con-
junction with Kaliko
Productions, the Caribbean-fla-
vored festival is scheduled to
feature a line-up of popular
entertainment figures, including
CaRiMi, T-Vice, Nu-Look,
Krezi Mizik, Zenglen, Hangout,
Suave, Gabel, Djakout Mizik
and the group Kassay.
Festival promotion
includes a Jan. 16 press con-
ference, followed by an offi-
cial party to be attended by
some of the show's artistes.
On Jan. 18 there is a party at
Marabou Caf6 in Pembroke
Pines. Bouyon Night is sched-
uled for Jan. 19.
Haiti officially celebrates

BRADES, Montserrat, CMC
- It was a field that included a
three-time champion, multiple
road march winners and an
international recording artiste,
but it was a first-time partici-
pant who emerged victorious
in the 2008 Montserrat Soca
Monarch last month.
Rondell Meade outclassed
11 other competitors with his
popular tune "My L \ii ,il to
win the crown in his first
attempt, ahead of former road
march champion Flying Dove
and dancehall/hip-hop
crossover artiste Kulcha Don.
Flying Dove was judged
to be the first runner-up for
his rendition of "Rootar
Stylee", while the United
States-based Kulcha Don,
who performed "Wickedest

The spirit and culture of
Trinidad and Tobago, includ-
ing steel pan music and cui-
sine from the twin-island
republic, will be showcased
this month in downtown
Miami, Florida.
Visionz Entertainment,
Marketing & Promotions Inc
will host the second annual
"Trinbago Village" on Brickell
Avenue during the ING Miami
Marathon scheduled for Jan. 29.
The entertainment pro-

its Independence on Jan. 1.
Other Haitian entertain-
ment events scheduled for
South Florida in 2009 include:
Mar. 14 Haitian
Gospel Festival, Senator
Gwen Margolis Amphitheater,
North Miami Beach.
May 16 the 11th
Annual Haitian Compas
Festival, Bicentennial Park,
downtown Miami.
Nov. 7 RASIN festival,
Bayfront Park.

Whine", finished as the sec-
ond runner-up._

Meade was among the
pre-show favorites and did not
disappoint the audience as he
had them singing along and
waving as he proclaimed "I
love my festival, I love it!"
In the end, there appeared
to be no doubt in the minds of
most of the spectators, who
had already proclaimed him to
be the new soca king even
before the judges' scorecards
were tabulated.
Meade was also among
the 10 finalists in the calypso
monarch competition last

gram, which will include live
music, will run from 9 a.m. to
11:30 a.m.
Last year's event featured
appearances by Gerard
Greene, T&T's consul general;
Neki Mohan, from Channel 10
News; Arthur Joseph, "Deal
or No Deal" winner; and Papa
Keith, radio personality from
99Jamz). There was also a
special musical performance
by Miami Pan Symphony.

A91-year-old Bermuda-
born actor been
named in the Queen's
New Year Honors List.
Earl Cameron has been
given a CBE for services to
drama after a career spanning
70 years, including a role in
the movie about Britain's
royal highness.
Cameron, who now lives
in Warwickshire, England, is
set for a real-life meeting with
Queen Elizabeth II just two
years after his role opposite
Helen Mirren in the Oscar-
winning film "The Queen".
Cameron, widely regard-
ed as the first black actor to
break the color barrier in the
United Kingdom film industry,
told reporters late last month
that he was looking forward to
visiting Buckingham Palace to
receive his award from the
"I played an artist who
painted Helen Mirren's por-
trait in 'The Queen', so I have
already had a trial run," he
"It never occurred to me I
would come up for any kind
of award like this."

Cameron was born in
Bermuda in 1917, and grew up
on Angle Street, Hamilton
just yards away from the cur-
rent site of the Liberty
Theatre. He joined the
Merchant Navy as a young
man and sailed mostly
between New York and South
before the
outbreak of
World War II
diverted his
ship to the
Unable to
get back to
Bermuda Cameron
without a
passport, he took menial jobs
to pay the bills.
Two years later, while
working in the kitchen of a
restaurant, he saw a play in the
West End, "Chu Chin Chow",
a musical comedy based on the
story of "Ali Baba and the
Forty Th \,%,. A few weeks
later, a small part in the play
opened up and Cameron,
who had friends in the produc-
tion, gladly took the role.

The play ran until 1946,
becoming the longest-running
musical in the West End dur-
ing its time.

Cameron's big break
came in "Pool of London", a
1951 film about a diamond
robbery that, unusually for its
time, featured a black actor in
a leading role. That first role,
as a Jamaican sailor, sparked
the beginning of a movie, the-
ater and television career that
has lasted almost seven
Cameron's popularity on
the big and small screen has
seen him star with actors
including Sean Connery in
theJames Bond movie
"Thunderball", in which he
played the Caribbean assistant
He also starred alongside
Richard Attenborough and
his friend Sidney Poitier in the
1973 film "A Warm
December", a love story set in
the English countryside.


Rookie wins Montserrat's

2008 soca monarch crown

T&T 'village' adds spice

to ING Miami Marathon

February is Black History Month, and this year it may quite possibly be the most
special ever. Join Caribbean Today as we celebrate the fantastic strides that we
have made and continue to make, as we salute the giants of black history. This is
your chance to salute and wish our new president all the very best.
To advertise in this section, please call
Dorothy, Sharon or Carmen at 305-238-2868
or fax your information to 305-252-7843
or email us at

January 2009



F nT U R 6

Caribbean grapples with the politics of dual citizenship

When Jamaica's chief
justice disqualified
Daryl Vaz from sit-
ting in Parliament last April, it
brought into focus the compli-
cations surrounding dual citi-
zenship, not only in that coun-
try, but throughout the entire
English-speaking Caribbean.
Vaz, a member of the rul-
ing Jamaica Labour Party
(JLP), was disqualified on the
basis that he "voluntarily"
renewed his United States
passport and used it to travel
overseas on numerous occa-
He has appealed the rul-
ing, as lawyers representing
the defeated People's National
Party's candidate in the 2007
general election Abe
Dabdoub are urging the Court
of Appeal to affirm the deci-
sion and declare their client
the duly elected legislator.
A judgment is expected
soon, but Prime Minister
Bruce Golding has already
indicated that he would call
fresh general elections if the
ruling goes against Vaz, there-
by reducing his slim majority
in the 60-member legislature
to 31.
Caribbean countries will
no doubt be following the
outcome of the Jamaica case
closely, since many of their
constitutions include a provi-
sion disqualifying dual citizens
from politics.
"The issue of dual citizens
and their eligibility for higher
office in the Caribbean has
been on the agenda most
forcefully in the last two years.
This issue has surfaced not
only in Jamaica, but also in
Trinidad and Tobago, St.
Kitts and Nevis, Guyana and
Grenada," said the Jamaica-
based Caribbean Policy
Research Institute (CaPRI),
which has just released a study
on the matter.
"The study was conceived
in response to the possible
instances of breaching this
proscription all over the

Caribbean," said Kim Marie
Spence, one of the authors.
She noted that in the various
Caribbean islands where the
matter has surfaced, it has
"became a political and per-
sonal issue. However, CaPRI
noted that, with dual citizen-
ships increasing and the
Caribbean territories making
a great effort to involve their
respective diasporas in the
development of their home-
lands, it is an important point
of the body politic to discuss,"
Spence said.

The study, titled "Dual
Citizenship and Political
Representation in
Jamaica", was compiled
using a 10-year survey of
legislation in Jamaica,
along with a sampling of
the discussion in the
Jamaican media. CaPRI
said it found that potential
conflicts of loyalty arose
less than one percent of
the time, and these con-
flicts often applied to the
minister responsible for
the specific policy area
under legislation. The
study also found that the
majority of acts were fairly
mundane, dealing with the
very-localized sphere of
constituency work.
"It is the conclusion of
CaPRI that it is time to Jan
move beyond personal con
dynamics and realize that
this is a national issue.
Jamaica is at a global cross-
roads and it is necessary for us
to explore fully the ramifica-
tions of dual citizenship,"
Spence said, adding that
CaPRI wants a national
debate on the clauses, rather
than just a facile statement
that the law is the law.
She added that the politi-
cal space for discussions on
revising or keeping the rele-
vant clauses is often limited,
"especially when majorities
are razor-thin, then it is treat-
ed as a political power issue,
rather than strictly a constitu-

tional issue."
Given the different cir-
cumstances under which per-
sons become dual citizens -
birth, marriage or naturaliza-
tion among others and the
high rate of returning resi-
dents, the issue needs a deci-
sion. Section 40 (2) of the
Jamaican Constitution speci-
fies that "No person shall be
qualified to be appointed as a
Senator or elected as a mem-
ber of the House of
Representatives who (a) is by
virtue of his own act, under
any acknowledgment of alle-
giance, obedience or adher-
ence to a foreign Power or
Si.,L Similar clauses are

defeated candidates had
brought election petitions ask-
ing the court to declare their
nominations null and void
because they held dual citizen-
ship at the time. However,
fresh general elections later
that year meant that the court
proceedings had become pure-
ly academic and the matter
has never really been

But the issue re-surfaced
in the Nov. 5 general elections
of 2007, when attorney Anan
Ramlogan warned voters that
"their votes may be '.,kLd if
they supported two

maica's case involving Dabdoub, left, and Vaz brought focus to the
implications of dual citizenship.

also found in the constitutions
of Trinidad and Tobago, St.
Vincent, Guyana, St. Kitts and
Nevis, The Bahamas, Antigua
and Barbuda, Barbados,
Grenada and St. Lucia.
In Trinidad and Tobago,
the issue of dual citizenship
surfaced during the last two
general elections. Following
the 2001 general elections,
Justice Ivor Archie ruled that
the constitutional rights of two
junior ministers were not
breached by the attempts to
unseat them from the House
of Representatives after two

Opposition candidates,
because they had performed a
"voluntary" act by applying
for British and U.S. passports,
respectively. In the study,
CaPRI said it found little
empirical support for the
hypothesis that an individual
who has pkdgLd allegiance
to a foreign p< 1\\.. r may offer
less than full commitment to
either country.
"The risk is that, at the
margins, the individual in
question might make trade-
offs that an individual who
holds only one citizenship -

and thus has no 'escape
clause' would not have the
option of doing," the group
noted. However, the study
also found that widening the
pool of eligible representa-
tives to include the diaspora
enhances the overall quality of
the political process.
"We found that this had
stronger backing, due to the
fact that the majority of our
tertiary-educated population -
85 percent emigrates. Trade
theory indicates that open
economies are more likely to
operate at optimal efficiency,
leading to aggregate welfare
gains. It is fair to assume a
similar within the political sys-
tem, through the effect of
widening the pool of suppli-
ers," it said.
Spence believes that
an examination of both
hypotheses was very useful,
with the study focusing on the
possible trade-off between
capacity and commitment.
"For example, not all for-
eigners have capacity. Not all
citizens are committed to the
country. Widening the eligibil-
ity to Parliament could
enhance the quality of the
political process. Many
Caribbean nationals emigrate
to become better-educated,"
she said. "We do not want to
give the impression that all
members of the diaspora
would add value just because
of living abroad -- individual
merit is still important."
CaPRI said that while an
international survey has
demonstrated that the global
trend appears to be towards
more rather than less open-
ness, when it comes to matters
of citizenship, many countries,
such as Japan, Germany,
Iceland, Austria, Peru, Burma
and Indonesia, all bar dual citi-
zenship. Its message for
Jamaica and by extension the
Caribbean: "It is up to Jamaica
and Jamaicans to decide which
works best for us".


Caribbean tourism will be hardest hit by economic slowdown ECLAC

United Nations' Economic
Commission for Latin
America and the Caribbean
(ECLAC) has warned that
Central America and the
Caribbean will be most affect-
ed by stagnation in tourism
caused by the global financial
According to ECLAC's
"Preliminary Overview of the
Economies of Latin America
and the Caribbean 2008",
about 75 percent of tourists to

the English-speaking
Caribbean come from devel-
oped economies that are expe-
riencing a recession.
The United Nations'
World Tourism Organization
(UNWTO) estimates that, in
2008, regional tourism grew
between two percent and
three percent, compared to 6.6
percent last year. UNWTO
projects that tourism to the
region will expand even less in
2009, estimating that it will be
"I ~ L\\iL rL between zero

percent and two percent".

ECLAC said Caribbean
tourism began experiencing a
"strong deceleration" between
June and Aug. 2008, due to
inlt rilLg deterioration of
real income and consumer
expectations, the volatility of
exchange rates, and restraints
on consumer loans due to the
financial crisis". It said
tourism is one of the econom-
ic activities in the region that

has flourished most in recent
years, noting that its impor-
tance has increased "as a gen-
erator of value-added and
According to ECLAC,
tourism expenditures in the
English-speaking Caribbean -
with the exception of Guyana,
Suriname and Trinidad and
Tobago are equivalent to 15
percent to 41 percent of gross
domestic product (GDP). In
the first eight months of 2008,
ECLAC said tourist arrivals in

the Caribbean grew by only
three percent.
It said between June and
August, demand for tourism
services in the Caribbean
came to a "standstill, due to
the lower number of visitors
to The Bahamas, Barbados,
Bermuda and Puerto Rico -
four destinations visited main-
ly by United States and
European tra\ I r, .

January 2009

REGIOrenada 17 released

Three more members of 'Grenada 17' released

ST. GEORGE'S, Grenada,
CMC Three prisoners, who
were among the infamous
"Grenada 17" jailed for the
1983 murders of former Prime
Minister Maurice Bishop and
several of his Cabinet col-
leagues, have been released
from jail here.
The decision was made
last month by the local Mercy
Committee, which has advised
Governor General Carlyle
Glean to remit the balance of
the sentences of Hudson
Austin, Colville McBarnette
and John Ventour. Based on
this advice, the governor gen-
eral issued the necessary doc-
uments, clearing the way for
their immediate release.
A release issued by the
Office of the Prime Minister
stated that prison reports had
shown that "all three men
have given leadership to the
prison population during their
incarceration at Richmond
The Tillman Thomas

administration also said that
the decision to free the men
was based on the recommen-
dations by Supreme Court
Justice Francis Bell in his re-
sentencing judgment last year.
"The previous (Keith
Mitchell) administration did
not pay heed to Justice Bell's
recommendations and it was
imperative that this adminis-
tration give effect to the
learned judge's UW i ni,, I the
release noted.

In the re-sentencing judg-
ment, Justice Bell handed
down 40-year jail terms to
each of the men. He, however,
recommended that Austin,
who has been credited for his
role in rebuilding the prison
after the passage of Hurricane
Ivan, be considered for special
remission based on his con-
duct and service to the prison.
The judge also recom-
mended "a Prison Board
review within six months or as

recommended by the medical
officer assigned" in the case of
Ventour, who suffers from
prostate cancer.
Justice Bell also recom-
mended "a board review of
the sentence of Colville
McBarnette within 12 months
or as recommended by the
medical officer assigned to the
prison in light of his health

In Dec. 2006, Andy
Mitchell, Vincent
Joseph and Cosmos
Richardson were
released, after spend-
ing 23 years in jail for
firing the shots that
killed Bishop. Prior to
that, Phyllis Coard,
the lone female mem-
ber of the group and
the wife of the former
deputy prime minister
and apparent master-
mind of the coup
Bernard Coard, was
set free in 2000 on
medical grounds.
Last year, another
three members of the
Grenada 17 Lester Redhead,
Christopher Stroude and Cecil
Prime walked out of the
Richmond Hill prison at the
order of Justice Belle.
That leaves seven members of
the group in jail.

St. Lucia offers three-month amnesty for

illegal migrants

CASTRIES, St. Lucia, CMC -
The St. Lucia government has
announced a three-month
amnesty, beginning Jan. 1,
2009, for Caribbean communi-
ty (CARICOM) nationals liv-
ing in the country illegally, to
have their status regularized.
Home Affairs Minister
Guy Mayers said that the
grace period
would apply
only to people f.
who havehlived ,
here for three
years or more
on a continu-
ous basis; do
not have a
criminal Mayer
record either
in St. Lucia or
their native land; and are not
However, he said that
even then, the guaranteeing of
permanent residence or citi-
zenship would not be auto-
"The only persons who have a
legal right as a citizen of St.
Lucia are persons who are
born in St. Lucia," Mayers
"We will deal with the
necessary processing and
engage in background checks
to ensure that you are who
you claim to be and have been
contributing to the develop-
ment of the country.
"Once we are satisfied
with that, then we will extend
citizenship to the individual."
Mayers said that St. Lucia
intends to seek similar treat-

ment for its nationals who are
living illegally in other CARI-
COM countries.

The national security min-
ister said that once the
amnesty expires at the end of
March, local authorities would
undertake a massive crack-
down on illegal immigrants.

The previous St. Lucia
Labour Party government had
approved a six-month amnesty
that expired on May 31 last
year, but the present adminis-
tration said that a consider-
able number of eligible per-
sons were unable to take part
for a variety of reasons.
There are an estimated
10,000 people living illegally in

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Call for Bids or Proposals

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open procurement solicitations, visit:
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BC strongly encourages participation by minority and women-
owned business enterprises (MWBE firms)

St. Lucia, with nationals of
Guyana comprising the
bi,,LI single group.

Street Address:
9020 SW 152nd Street, Miami, FL 33157
Mailing Address: P.O. Box 6010
Miami, FL 33116-6010.
Telephone: (305) 238-2868
(305) 253-6029 Fax: (305) 252-7843
Toll-Free Fax: 1-866-290-4550
1-800-605-7516 Jamaica: 654-7282
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Vol. 20, Number 2 DEC. 2009

Managing Editor
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Account Executive
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Account Executive
Accounting Manager
Caribbean Media Source
Media Representatives
Opinions expressed by editors and writers
are not necessarily those of thepublisher.
Caribbean Today, an independent
news magazine, is published every month
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Caribbean Today is not responsible
for unsolicited manuscripts or photos. To
guarantee return, please include a self-
addressed stamped envelope.
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JA/ etti

Wellness Center

DATE: SUNDAY, 2/1/09
TIME: 11llam 3pm
LOCATION: 12955 SW 132ND St.
Bldg. 3B Suite 107 Miami, FL
PHONE: (305) 520-5751 WEBSITE:




B B .......
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January 2009


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20 CARIBBEAN TODAY January 2009
a great deal on
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