Teenaged Murder-Accused Gives Birth

The young lady who is accused of killing her three-year old sister almost one year ago has given birth to a baby boy.

Aneka Charles of St. George’s Estate who has been committed to stand trial for the murder of Sharian Charles on November 6, 2011 got pregnant while out of prison on $50,000.00 bail.

The Charles matter is among one hundred cases on the list for the October Criminal Assizes.

Teenaged murder-accused Aneka Charles – gave birth to a baby boy

It came up for mention on Monday at High Court Number One that is presided over by Madam Justice, Clare Henry.

After the Court Orderly called her name and no appearance was made, Defense Attorney, Derrick Sylvester informed the court that Charles had given birth “to a bouncing baby boy” last week Saturday at the General Hospital.

Madam Justice Henry set October 29 for the former Secondary School Student to appear before her in connection with the murder case.

The murdered three-year old child was reported missing and a subsequent search of the area found the body in some bushes close to the house.

She was found with her clothes wet and froth coming from her nostrils and mouth.

The young child was pronounced dead by Dr. Gail Friday before her body was taken away by a local funeral agency. A post-mortem, concluded that she died from asphyxiation.

Chief Magistrate Tamara Gill came in for a barrage of criticisms from the General Public when she remanded Charles to the Richmond Hill Prisons after police charged the teenaged girl with the murder of her little sibling.

The Magistrate said at the time that she had no choice but to have her remanded in custody since she does not have the authority in law to grant her bail due to the nature of the offense.

The Magistrate said only the High Court can grant the bail and this was eventually done.

As part of the bail condition, Charles was placed in the care of an independent family. However, a change in the placement was made due to alleged misbehaviour on the part of the accused.

THE NEW TODAY Newspaper learnt that it was during the change among families that Charles got pregnant.

The bail was revoked and she was once more placed on remand at the Richmond Hill Prisons.

Charles who was 17 years old at the time of the incident is once again on bail as she awaits her trial.

Conditions are tough – relief invisible!

The latest piece of bad news concerning our money problems – in these struggling Islands very well known as Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique, or the Spice Isles of the Caribbean – has come as no surprise to anyone who follows the happenings over the years, and more especially these latest two or three years.

The Government was not able to pay some One Hundred and Ninety odd Millions to a Financial Institution about a month ago, and the grace period of that month has now expired and the payment was still no where in sight.  And in addition salaries and wages for Government workers just two weeks away – plus all the other expenses that are becoming due on a weekly basis, and cannot be met not even for very basic needs at the General Hospital, or parish Dispensaries Islandwide.

The general situation financially at all levels, are becoming very, very, desperate – and those still holding onto the reins of power as the Government in control, they have a very serious responsibility and equally solemn duty, to take immediate steps to bring this unprecedented state of affairs to an end, in the general welfare of all our people, regardless of their political or party interest or affiliation.

Our suffering people who inhabit these Islands, are far more important than the party leaders and their hangerson, and whatever political principles those involved on which ever side, maybe claiming are at stake in the chaos and confusion now existing Islandswide.

The longer these desperate times are allowed to spread over all aspects of our people’s daily lives, the very much harder and far more costly it will become to make amends and recover lost grounds. By delaying the opportunity for our people to make amends, and chart a new course for our struggling Tri-Island State to get out of its political mellee – the more difficult would be the task ahead, and as per usual the same sufferers would be the new victims.

While it is appreciated that the NDC party has been placed in a very awkward situation, and as the Government of the day for the past four years, those remaining in positions of authority still have some responsibility, for the people who voted them as a team into office in July 2008.

Nevertheless, the good and welfare, and the overall interest of the people as a whole, must be given some priority when considering where we go from hereon, and how soon we move to wherever.

The existing situation must be unprecedented in West Indian Politics – if not in the entire Commonwealth of Nations.

The NDC party was elected into office on the 8th July, 2008, with (11) Eleven Seats in the Lower House of Parliament – which was comprised of (15) fifteen Elected  M.P.’s  After the Five resignations and dismissal of NDC M.P.’s from the NDC Party on the 30th September, 2012 – the ruling party now has Six Elected M.P.’s in the Lower House.

This must mean, therefore, that the Government is in control of the Nation’s affairs with a minority in Parliament of 6 to 9.  So how can the business of the people be organised and contracted as such.

In addition to that party-political state of affairs, the affairs of State always require a majority decision – especially when it comes down to seeking Loans and overdraft facilities from Banks and other such institutions.

And as if to add Constitutional political embarrassment, to financial inadequacies in the day by day running of the Government of the people in the State – the very Parliament for conducting the business of the people as a whole, that noble Institution is now suspended indefinitely – by reason of the Governor General’s Prorogation.

The Opposition NNP, at its meeting/rally last week Sunday in Tanteen had a Petition signed by its supporters and others, appealing to the Governor General, the Speaker of the House and the Prime Minister to have Parliament re-opened for the conduct of the business of the people.

What response would be forthcoming and how soon – only time and good sense will determine, but there can be no denying, that the current circumstances are definitely not in keeping with the spirit and the intentions of the Constitution, and should be brought to an end in the shortest possible time.

In recent days, news have been coming out, that the Agriculture roads project which has been on hold for some time now, would be starting soon; as well as the new Parliament Building, to be constructed on the damaged Governor General’s old residence, the plans and design have been approved, and will be going out to Tender for starting the Building sometime next year.

The temptation to feel that those two developments will be a big boost to the chances of the group still in control, is quite reasonable – but on the other hand, so much further damage could result from the delay, and by the looks of conditions already on stream over which the controllers have no means of diverting – the last stage could very well end up being a lot worse, than what the controllers are trying to overcome by the delay in going to the polls.

Those advising the powers-that-be, and the decision-makers themselves – they all have to fully consider the impact, any undue delay will be having on the lives and the living conditions of our people in general, and not just their chances at the Polls – whenever that maybe.

To be doing just the latter, while a whole lot of people are suffering, and many ketching real hell to make ends meet on a daily basis – would be leaving themselves wide open for any manner of reprisals from those sufferers, in the waiting period.

Our people have seen and felt the effects, of what took place during the long period of the NNP Opposition when they were in control, as well as the happenings over the last four years, while the NDC lot carried on with their disunity and disloyalty to the party Leader, during which time nothing of any substance took place.

From that background therefore, there is more than enough evidence to enable the Voters in any upcoming Elections, to make wise choices of whom they wish to represent them for the next five years and beyond, depending on their performances in the first period. Prolonging the agony now existing, will not make any substantial difference especially for those in the driving seats.

And in my considered opinion – the delay in going to the Polls would make the existing bad matters much worse for the incumbents, and improve the chances for their opponents as long as the delay continues.

But even more importantly – as far as the people and their good and welfare are concerned, and their relief from the harsh and hopeless conditions now suffocating them on a daily basis – ending the stalemate now existing, and voting for a more united and committed group to control their affairs, must be a whole lot better than the hopeless situation daily facing them all.

In the uncertain and divided state of affairs now existing – the chances of any immediate relief coming our way are no where in sight, but the hardships are increasing and becoming unbearable.

Aid: The golden taps being turned off

Austerity budgets throughout Europe, and Government cuts on welfare spending, have caused many people to argue that aid allocations to foreign countries should be reduced and the money spent on domestic needs. This will shortly have an adverse effect on countries in the Caribbean unless they advance solid proposals with achievable outcomes for continuing to receive aid.

Popular media in many European countries have been in the forefront of the argument to cut aid. They have revealed how aid has been misspent and even used for the purchase of military equipment in certain countries.

Among the influential persons in Britain who would like to see the government “turn off the golden taps and stop flooding the developing world with our money” is Lord Michael Ashcroft, a significant contributor to the coffers of Prime Minster David Cameron’s Conservative Party.

Lord Ashcroft is no Scrooge.  A wealthy man himself, he contributes generously to a number of charities and other organisations doing valuable and helpful work in many developing countries.  As he said in an open letter to the recently appointed Minister for International Development in Britain, Justine Greening: “I do not fully agree with the argument (that) we should turn our backs on the world’s poorest people because of tough times at home”.

Yet, his concern about Britain’s aid spending is reflective of many both in the Conservative Party and the country at large. He says: “They think it morally wrong to carry on giving away such vast sums abroad – more than £300 per household – at a time of domestic spending cuts”.

Except for the Department for International Development (DfID), every government department in Britain has suffered severe spending cuts.  DfID’s budget has not only been protected, it is expanding from £7.8 billion in 2010 to £11.5 billion in 2015.

What influential persons like Lord Ashcroft want is to see aid provided on the basis of “rigorous analysis of all available evidence”.

The reason that Caribbean countries, except for Haiti, should be highly alert to this increasingly prevalent thinking in Europe is that they are all classified as Middle Income Countries (MICs) and there is an increasing contention that the MICs should use their resources to look after their own and stop expecting the taxpayers of other countries to do so.

This thinking is already evident in the approach of the European Union (EU) to aid.  The European Commission has unveiled a Differentiated Development Instrument which has graduated 18 MICs from aid except in certain specific circumstances.

It is generally agreed that the decision to “graduate” MICs under its “differentiated” approach will migrate into the European Development Fund (EDF) under which Caribbean countries get aid from the EU as part of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) group.

Significantly, Ms. Greening, at a Conservative Party Conference, shortly after her appointment is reported to have “criticised the EU for giving aid to less poor countries and said she would be meeting European development officials next week to make sure the EU targeted aid where it could have the greatest impact”.

She is quoted as saying that “it was not right for the EU to provide aid for countries higher up the income scale”.

There is still some hope that Caribbean MICs may not face an immediate ‘graduation’ from EU aid. Apart from the fact that the terms of an arrangement still exist under the Cotonou Treaty between the EU and the ACP that runs until 2020, other factors such as the vulnerabilities of small states could be taken into account.

A vulnerability index for small states was developed by the Commonwealth Secretariat using criteria in addition to per capita income.  While these additional criteria have not been adopted by institutions such as the World Bank and the World Trade Organisation (WTO), they are compelling enough not to be wholly ignored.

But, it is important to understand that there is no guarantee that, in the present climate in Europe, they will be recognised. The popular sentiment is to redirect aid allocations to financing domestic needs. What then can Caribbean countries do in these circumstances?  What is certain is that many of them continue to need aid particularly for infrastructural development.

At the moment, much of that aid is coming from Venezuela, China or Taiwan placing them in an increasingly dependent relationship with these three countries. In any event, while aid from these three sources is vital, it is not enough.

Caribbean countries, therefore, have to be mindful of Lord Ashcroft’s admonition to the British International Development Minister and gear their aid requests “on rigorous analysis of available evidence”.

If the Caribbean countries do not adopt this approach, some of them – especially the smaller ones with extremely limited natural resources – may have to slip back into the status of less developed countries before they become eligible for significant aid.

The British-based Overseas Development Institute has made an argument that Caribbean countries should take on board. In a paper by Jonathan Glennie, it points out that “those countries that are graduating from aid dependence to more sustainable levels of aid need to set in train policies to smooth their graduation, supported by key donor allies”.

But, this will not happen without strategic thinking, planning and organisation by the Caribbean countries themselves. The specific and realistic needs of individual Caribbean countries have to be identified with a clear idea of their sustainability and their contribution to job creation and production.

Once those needs are identified and agreed, a donor conference should be organised to endorse the needs and agree on the financing including through changed rules in the international financial institutions.

The region’s organisations – the Caribbean Community Secretariat, the Secretariat of the Organisation of Eastern Caribbean States and the Caribbean Development Bank – should be initiating this work, or at least placing it on the agenda of governments.

The problem is not tomorrow, it is now.

 

Remembering October 19th 1983

As we approach the 29th year of the memory of October 19th 1983, some have begun to reflect on the loved ones that were lost and incidents that occurred on that day.

Recently I was asked “Where were you on that fatal morning?” The question was being asked in an attempt to gather information for a television program. It occurred to me that the question that needed to be asked was: “Why I was there?”

Answering the “why” will uncover the reasons behind the peoples’ motivation for where they were on October 19th, 1983. From School Children, Officers of the Army or the Common Businessman, like me, we can all reveal further details of that day.

On that day I left my car at home and made my way into town to hear the recently released Prime Minister speak. As he was under house arrest by his colleagues for some time, the Prime Minister finally had an opportunity to address his people.

Even though there was obvious unrest and there seemed to be impeding trouble pending, I approached cautiously. Since reflecting, I have recently had an opportunity to pose the question to a couple of Grenadians.

A 40 year old young man told me that he was in town on that day. The reason why he was there on that morning was that he was influenced by his Head Master, who convinced him to get on the bus provided to take the children of his school to the march to support the release of Maurice Bishop.

I spoke to an ex-soldier, who told me his Unit Commander ordered him to get on the transport to “go to defend the Revolution”.

This might be an interesting way to find out who influenced the events of October 19, 1983.

Where were you and why, on October 19th 1983?

Keen Observer

NNP promises mini stadium in honour of Kirani

World 400m champion, Kirani James

Grenada’s Olympic 400 metre champion, Kirani James has been promised an additional national recognition if the main opposition, New National Party (NNP) of former Prime Minister, Dr. Keith Mitchell is voted back into office.

Dr. Mitchell told supporters attending a recent public meeting at the Roy St John Playing Field in Tanteen a new government formed by the NNP will construct a mini-stadium at the Cuthbert Peters park in Kirani’s hometown at Gouyave and name it in honour of the World and Olympic champion.
“Let us honour him in Gouyave”, Mitchell told the crowd to loud cheers of approval.

The former Prime Minister who held the reigns of power for 13 years until his demise on July 08, 2008 when the National Democratic Congress (NDC) won 11 of the 15 seats in the poll, did not identify the source of funding for the project but said that on completion, will be named the “Kirani James Stadium”.

The announcement was seen by many as a campaign promise by the NNP to boost the chances of its candidate in the upcoming general elections – businessman, Alvin Da Breo.
The Grenadian super athlete was showered with awards by the Congress government of Prime Minister Tillman Thomas last month in honour of his victory at the London Olympics in August.

Dr. Keith Mitchell – let us honour him in Gouyave

Kirani’s return to Grenada for the first time since his Olympic Gold Medal win, was met with celebrations at the Maurice Bishop International Airport (MBIA) followed by two days of activities to “Hail the King”.

On September 1, Kirani’s 20th Birthday, an islandwide motorcade was held that concluded with a national rally at the Sporting Stadium at Queen’s Park where a vast array of gifts were thrust upon him.

In the presence of thousands of Grenadians decked in national colours, Prime Minister Thomas announced that Grenada’s gifts to its local hero included the donation of half a million dollars in Government Bonds, a day of national recognition (September 01) on KIRANI DAY as well as a promise to name the Athletic and Football Stadium on completion as the Kirani Stadium.

Government also appointed Kirani as a Tourism Ambassador for Grenada and handed over to him a Diplomatic Passport for his use, and for there to be Commemorative Stamps to be published in Kirani’s honour.

In addition, the Prime Minister gave assurances that a Museum and a Resource and Fitness Centre will be built in Gouyave, St John in Kirani’s honour.

Two prominent citizens, Sandra Ferguson and Attorney-At-Law (her brother) Ruggles Ferguson handed over a parcel of land at Palmiste, St John valued in excess of $100,000.00, to the “Jaguar” to build his new home.

Republic Bank (Grenada) Limited also presented King Kirani with a cheque for EC$100,000 in recognition of his Olympic feat while Columbian Emeralds donated a vast array of gifts which included jewellery items such as a necklace, bracelet, ring and a watch.

A correct move!!!

THE NEW TODAY would like to commend the government of Prime Minister Tillman Thomas on its decision to strike off Criminal Libel from the law books of the country.

It was a promise made by PM Thomas and his National Democratic Congress (NDC) during their time in opposition to the then governing New National Party (NNP) of former Prime Minister, Dr. Keith Mitchell.

Ironically, it was Dr. Mitchell along with his controversial Special Prosecutor, Jamaican attorney-at-law, Hugh Wildman who resorted to the use of the Criminal Libel law for the first time in the history of Grenada to press charges against Editor of the now defunct GRENADA TODAY newspaper, George Worme.

As close aides to the former Grenadian leader intimated, the move was aimed at teaching Worme a lesson by sending him off to jail for as long as possible for writing articles against a Prime Minister who some within his own organisation now refer to as “The King”.

Even the late Eric Matthew Gairy who was hated by the so-called “bourgeois press” of the day controlled by elements that were loyal to the Grenada National Party (GNP) never resorted to criminal libel in response to his detractors.

There is widespread feeling even among legal professionals such as lawyers and judges that in a democratic and civilised society, adequate provisions exist within the judicial system for a court meeting in its civil jurisdiction to handle matters of libel against journalists.

A politician with dictatorial tendencies can subject the Criminal Libel law to abuse. A politician of that nature can use the threat of criminal libel to frighten the practicing journalist from reporting anything against him.

In the case of Dr. Mitchell, although both he and Wildman brought a case of Criminal Libel against Worme, the two more often than not failed to attend sittings of the court whenever the matter came up before then Chief Magistrate, Patricia Mark.

It is rather unfortunate that the Media Workers Association of Grenada (MWAG) has not seen it fit to issue a formal statement of congratulation to the Tillman Thomas-led Congress government on fulfilling its promise to do away with Criminal Libel on the law books of Grenada.

Was the association aware of this important action on the part of the government, which is a positive step towards the furtherance of press freedom in the country?

Perhaps, MWAG is too engaged at the moment in internal wrangling between its Executive and the general membership who are clamouring for a meeting in keeping with the constitution of the organisation.

The importance of the free and independent media cannot be under-stated especially as the country is once again forced to remember the bloody events of October 19, 1983 involving the execution of Revolutionary Prime Minister Maurice Bishop and three Cabinet colleagues.

It was the free press that the supporters of the late Prime Minister resorted to in order to get their views to the outside world as they themselves fell victim to press freedom by their own Comrades.

The executed former Foreign Affairs Minister, Unison Whiteman often used the airwaves of then Radio Antilles in Montserrat to inform the region about the stand-off between the imprisoned Bishop and the rival camp led by Bernard Coard and others.

Prior to this, the same PRG comrades often labeled Radio Antilles as a tool of imperialism and the reactionary forces who were bent on destabilising the Grenada Revolution.

Faced with a cut-off from their own so-called Radio Free Grenada, which was controlled by operatives of Coard and his Gang, one faction within the NJM/PRG regime was forced to use the Montserrat-based radio station to communicate their messages to Grenadians and the outside world.

It was also the free and independent Alister Hughes who, working as a journalist for the Caribbean News Agency (CANA) and Associated Press (AP) captured the last two words issued by Bishop within minutes of being freed from house arrest by supporters who moved into his home at Mt. Wheldale and took him away as soldiers looked on helpless in the face of People’s power.

“The masses”, these were the words that Bishop used to Hughes who sought to question him about the state of mayhem within his then ruling NJM as rival forces prepared to defend themselves against the unavoidable bloodshed.

Isn’t it ironic that 29 years later, the same free and independent media was the one that had to deal with a certain political development within the Congress government and party by some of the same players and actors of October 1983?

THE NEW TODAY makes no apology for allowing someone under the pen name of “Stone Crusher” to use its medium to expose those who were bent on taking away State power from Prime Minister Thomas.

The paper was correct in allowing “The Stone Crusher” to help in the so-called political “cremation” of the Gang that rose up within the bowels of Congress – similar to the clear attempt that was made by the pro-Coard group known as OREL which considered themselves as the real revolutionaries and the ones to guide the 1979-83 process under Democratic Centralism and not the one-manism of Bishop that was modeled under the Cuban brand of Communism.

The annihilation of the Gang had to be hurried up especially after Comrade Selwyn Strachan made the quite revealing statement that the September 30, 2012 Convention of the NDC was all about a battle for control of the party between the 1979-83 revolutionary figure in the person of Peter David and the jailed and imprisoned Tillman Thomas.

A noted world scholar once noted that all forms of governments are bad but democracy is still the best among them.

Our system still has a place for the likes of Peter David, Selwyn Strachan and Chester Humphrey and others of that bygone days to promote and sell their wares to the public unlike ’79-83 when the guns and heavy manners for counters were the order of the day.

Once again, congrats to Prime Minister Thomas and his NDC government for taking the bold step to remove the dreaded Criminal Libel legislation from the law books of Grenada, Carriacou and Petite Martinique.

Official health website launched

Senior Health Officials at the launch

A website which provides health information at the finger tips of persons with a computer and internet access has been launched by the Ministry of Health in Grenada.

The site www.health.gov.gd was officially launched by Minister for Health, Sen. Ann Peters at a media launch in St. George’s, which also brought together the technical heads from various divisions and departments under the Health Ministry.

In unveiling the website, Sen. Peters said it is a component of a bigger plan that coincides with the soon-to-be computerised Government’s healthcare system – Grenada Electronic Network for integrated Health Care (GENIHC).

The female government minister described the site’s unveiling as a new beginning that has the potential to address the human resource needs and succession planning of her Ministry.

She appealed to the public to utilise the website and make it their number one source for information.

“I am very proud of this achievement and proud of the team from the Ministry of Health for working diligently to make the website a successful project. I can stand here today and say because of the dedication of commitment to the team at the Ministry of Health what many of us thought was only a dream is today a reality”, she said.

www.health.gov.gd was developed by the Information Communication Technology (ICT) unit in the Health Ministry led by Hayden Hopkin with assistance from the Public Relations Unit – Ministry of Health and the Technical Management Unit of the Ministry of Information Communication Technology under Hugh Whyte.

The launch took place just days after the Ministry of Health received USD124,000.00, in electronic equipment, under the Electronic Government for Regional Integration Project (EGRIP).

The Ministry’s website will play a significant role in piloting the gradual implementation of the country’s first ever electronic health network while updating interested parties about the Government’s plans and programs for health.

Petition to re-open Parliament

MP Roland Bhola – we would not call on the people to demonstrate or fight

A petition concocted by the Opposition New National Party (NNP) seeking to force the resumption of Parliament will be presented to Governor General Sir Carlyle Glean this week.

The NNP is seeking to press the Tillman Thomas-led government to re-open Parliament and allow Members of Parliament to debate issues of national importance such as the rising cost of living and the unemployment situation in the country.

General Secretary for the main opposition party and Member of Parliament for St Andrew North-east, Roland Bhola, told supporters during the party’s recent rally at the Roy St John Playing Field that they will not call on the people to demonstrate or fight, but would instead seek 5,000 signatures for their petition to be presented to Sir Carlyle.

The Petition read at the rally by NNP’s Public Relations Officer, Terrence Forrester seeks the immediate reconvening of Parliament.
Prime Minister Thomas last month requested the Governor-General to prorogue Parliament, bringing an end to the 4th Session of the 8th Parliament.

A date for the commencement of the 5th Session of the 8th Parliament is yet to be announced.

One of the several issues to be debated prior to closure of Parliament was a second motion of no confidence brought against the Prime Minister by former Foreign Affairs Minister Karl Hood.

Hood’s motion against the Prime Minister was the second within three months. The first was filed by Opposition Leader, Dr Keith Mitchell.

Hood resigned from the Congress-led Cabinet in May due to what he said was a situation within the Congress that has become untenable and unbearable for him.

His resignation followed on the heels of his refusal to vote on Mitchell’s no confidence motion against the Prime Minister.

With the Prorogation of Parliament, Hood’s motion is no longer valid.

The Member of Parliament for the St. George South-east constituency has served notice of his intention to resubmit the no-confidence motion.

Hood was one of five government MP’s to be expelled as members of Congress at the party’s September 30 annual Convention.

Young Nyturi will fly the G’da flag

Nyturi Smith will represent Grenada at the 2012 Courts OECS Reading Competition

An eight-year old student, Nyturi Smith of St Andrew’s Methodist School is Grenada’s 2012 Courts OECS Reading Competition winner.

Nyturi readings of the narrative, “A basket of Gold” along with a news piece featuring a press release from the Ministry of Education, Public Relations Department impressed the panel of three judges to cop the top award.

She scored 275 points in defeating six other opponents to win the right to represent Grenada in the upcoming Court-sponsored OECS Reading Competition.

The final of the Grenada leg of the competition was held at the Grenada Boys Secondary School (GBSS) last week Friday.

Nyturi’s closest rival was Savannah Green from the Happy Hill R.C. School with 272 points followed in third place by Aileen Hector of St David’s R.C. and fourth, Jada Glean of Blessed Sacrament R.C (259 points).

Speaking on behalf of Courts, its Marketing Manager, Deleon Walters said that the competition, which started in 2009, stemmed from a preview of the Dominica competition, which was subsequently implemented in all OECS territories where Courts stores are located.

Walters stated that Courts would continue to contribute to the development of education, sports, community and the overall development of the country in which it operates.

He described the seven participants as winners in their own rights, having made it to the finals of the competition.

The students were judged based on fluency, accuracy, smoothness, pronunciation, punctuation, conveyance of mood, volume, confidence and ability to recover from mistakes.

Past participant of the competition, Bejon Bubb, a student of GBSS encouraged the competitors to remain positive.

“Don’t be discouraged, don’t be nervous … you have made it to the finals, that’s a major accomplishment … do the best you can”, were the comforting words given to the participants.

The winning student received a cheque for $2000 in addition to $2000 for her school, a laptop, a certificate of participation and other prizes.

The second place winner was handed a cheque for $1,000, a certificate of participation and other prizes while the third place winner got $ 750.00, as well as a certificate of participation and other prizes.

The other participants each received a cheque for $500, a certificate of participation and other prizes.

The Courts OECS Reading Competition, to be held towards the end of October, is aimed at supporting the reading and literacy development of students.

NDC looks to Byer to defend south seat

The Executive of the National Democratic Congress congratulates Merle Byer as the choice of Caretaker for the South St. George Constituency Branch.

Merle Byer – takes up the challenge as NDC Caretaker for the South

The South St. George Constituency Branch of the party recently endorsed Byer who is the Manager of L&M Investments as their caretaker during one of the regular meetings.

Byer who is a businesswoman by profession and has been with the party for the past 12 years, serves on the Finance Committee with distinction.

The South Caretaker spoke about being encouraged by the confidence placed in her.

“I am up to the challenge, and I’m very optimistic,” Byer said.
She said she saw the need to fill the void that was left in the party by the resignation of the Member of Parliament, Glynis Roberts.

The Caretaker supported MP Roberts throughout her campaign in the last General Elections.

Byer said the urge also came when everyone felt hopeless with the MP’s resignation, but shied away from coming forward to be the replacement.

She sees herself as being someone who is willing to spend the time needed with her constituents.

She knows that she will listen to what the constituents have to say, and would work for the very best interests of her people and country.

“I am grateful to all the people who called me, all the people who expressed their desire now to go and get registered.”

The Caretaker’s selection came mere weeks after a new Executive Body was put in place for the South St. George Constituency.

The Constituency Branch patiently awaits the decision of the National Executive Council regarding Byer’s candidacy.

The NDC is currently engaged in a process of selecting Caretaker Candidates for the 15 constituencies on the island.

Among the persons who can be considered as possible line-up for Congress in the upcoming general elections are:

Town of St. George – Senator Franka Bernardine
St. George South-east – Randal Robinson
St. George North-east – Nazim Burke
St. George South – Merle Byer
St. George North-west – Vacant
St. David’s – Vacant
St. Andrew South-east – Patrick Simmons
St. Andrew South-west – Sylvester Quarles
St. Andrew North-west – Alleyne Walker
St. Andrew North-east – Terry Hillaire
St. Patrick East – Prime Minister Tillman Thomas
St. Patrick West – Vacant
St. Mark – Dennoth Modeste
St. John – Dr. George Vincent
Carriacou & Petite Martinique – Vacant