Local bank comes forward

Republic Bank has made another contribution to the development of young people on the island, through education.

The 2013 Top CXC Performer, Josh H.P. Henry, a graduate of the Grenada Boys’ Secondary School, was awarded $1,000 for his outstanding performance in this year’s CXC Examinations.

In presenting the award, Managing Director of the bank, Keith Johnson applauded Josh for his achievement and encouraged him to continue striving for excellence.

Josh, a student at the T.A. Marryshow Community College, thanked the Bank for the gesture and promised to continue working diligently in his pursuit to become a mechanical engineer.

For the 2013/2014 academic year, fifteen (15) Grenadians received bursaries under the Bank’s ongoing Bursary Programme with the University of the West Indies – Open Campus.

Rep. Bank's Manaaging Director presents cheque to Josh Henry - Top CXC Performer 2013

Rep. Bank’s Manaaging Director presents cheque to Josh Henry – Top CXC Performer 2013

Johnson again encouraged the recipients to work hard in their pursuit of academic advancement and pledged the Bank’s commitment to continue empowering Grenadians, through education.

A total of $19,440.00 was disbursed to qualified students for semester I. A total of $60,000 is reserved annually by Republic Bank for education assistance – $40,000 for its Bursary programme, and $20,000 for the Scholarship programme.

The Republic Bank Bursary Programme has, to date, expended $137,810 to assist several Grenadians who are otherwise unable to study full time at a UWI Campus.

Rep. Bank Managing Director with Bursary Recipients and UWI Head

Rep. Bank Managing Director with Bursary Recipients and UWI Head

Disbursement is based on academic ability and case of need.

NDC Boss throws out a caution to LIME

Tillman Thomas – do not corroborate with the government

Tillman Thomas – do not corroborate with the government

Former Prime Minister and Leader of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Tillman Thomas is cautioning telecommunications provider LIME against corroborating with the New National Party (NNP) Government of Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell in providing internet service to the Parliamentary Electoral offices.

Thomas’ advice to LIME came as a result of a letter signed by Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Works, Lana Mc Phail and addressed to the former Supervisor of Elections, Judy Benoit advising her that at its meeting of July 29 the Cabinet of Ministers has authorised the installation of internet services, and that the ministry has instructed LIME to undertake the installation “as a matter of urgency.”

“LIME, as a good corporate citizen, should not corroborate with the government in an attempt to undermine the democratic process in Grenada,” Thomas told members of the media at a Press Conference last week Thursday.

Benoit had responded to Mc Phail informing her that the move being made by the Mitchell government could undermine the independence and integrity of the Parliamentary Electoral Office.

Within days of the letter, newly installed Governor-General Dame Cecile La Grenade removed Benoit from the post of Supervisor of Elections.

The Mitchell government in its efforts to pursue a more electronic government wants the Electoral Office to co-operate on the issuing of identification cards for the new initiative.

Benoit also queries whether any thought was given to the important question of whether internet traffic might not seriously compromise Grenada’s electoral system.

In commenting on the development, the NDC Political Leader said his party expects corporate citizens to be advised on the issue and to know what is happening, and to know the Constitution of Grenada.

The former Prime Minister also urged the local media to take the issue to the regional and international communities.

He said while his Political party has a role to play, the media should be the ones informing the region about what is happening in the country.

Thomas said he would like to see the local Journalists become more proactive.

“I find in recent times you all have been behaving as if you have no critical and analytical skills anymore.. You must have contact and correspondents in different parts of the region. Let them know what is happening in Grenada, send the information to them,” he added.

 

ROBBERS AT LARGE!!!

Location of the Money Gram Outlet where bandits made of with $10,000.00

Location of the Money Gram Outlet where bandits made of with $10,000.00

It was a week of violence in the Spice Isle as armed men staged a robbery at Money Gram in Westerhall and others attacked a policeman on duty at the Ministerial Complex at the Botanical Gardens and took away his service revolver.

Police Officer, Venol Phillip who was conducting guard duty at the Ministerial Complex was attacked by three men-wearing mask who beat him in the head and other parts of the body and left him without his gun.

A reliable source told THE NEW TODAY newspaper that the policeman was accosted in the early hours of last week Thursday while stationed at the guard booth of the Ministerial Complex.

The source who spoke on condition of not being identified said that one of the masked men who was carrying a gun ambushed Phillip.

He said that one of the men sneaked up on the Policeman who resides at Grand Anse Valley, St. George’s from behind and caught him totally unawares.

The young Police Officer who had to do a brain scan was allegedly beaten by his attackers who took away the pistol he was carrying along with 15 rounds of ammunition.

The Guard Booth at the Ministerial Complex where the Police Officer was attacked

The Guard Booth at the Ministerial Complex where the Police Officer was attacked

A family member of the injured policeman was angry at the manner in which Phillip was treated by his own colleagues who took him into the Criminal Investigation Department CID for a debriefing session on the incident.

“They had the boy in CID questioning him for hours as if he was the one that did the crime. The boy needed medical treatment since he complained that they (the attackers beat him in the head”, she said.

The three men also took away a Blackberry Torch cellular phone valued at $600.00 that belongs to Phillip.

Meanwhile, Head of Security to Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell has fallen victim to robbery.

THE NEW TODAY understands that a vehicle owned by Cletus St. Paul, who was also the chief bodyguard to slain leftist Prime Minister Maurice Bishop, was broken into and a number of electronic items were stolen from it.

A well-placed source told this newspaper the vehicle, registration number HAA446 was parked last week Wednesday at Tanteen, St. George’s by St. Paul’s son, Clinton when it was broken into.

The items stolen included a laptop computer, one VHF radio, and one Radio Shack scanner.

Earlier in the day, two masked men armed with a gun and a cutlass made off with a substantial sum of money from the Money Gram Outlet at Westerhall, St. David’s.

The daring daylight robbery took place last week Wednesday just after 11:00 a.m.

According to a high level source without creating any alarm or suspicion, the men entered the administrative office in the upper part of Home Pride Bakery which houses Money Gram and demanded money from the cashier as one of them pointed the gun at her.

The source who does not wish to be identified said the men took away about $10,000.00 that was inside a drawer and then ran off into the nearby bushes.

A release issued by the Royal Grenada Police Force (RGPF) one day after the robbery said that three men were in police custody assisting the lawmen with their investigations.

One vehicle was also confiscated for investigative purposes.

However, up to the time of going to press no one was charged in connection with the Moneygram robbery, the beating of the policeman or the vehicle incident involving one of the island’s top security officers.

Bandits strike Female Attorneys

Celia Clyne-Edwards QC – attacked in the comfort of her house

Celia Clyne-Edwards QC – attacked in the comfort of her house

Grenada’s lone female Queen’s Counsel, Celia Clyne-Edwards is among two female attorneys who have been robbed on separate occasions over the past week.

Clyne-Edwards was accosted by two men who broke into her house last week Thursday.

The 56-year. old attorney was at the time relaxing at her Golf Course, St. George’s home when the incident occurred.

A high level source told THE NEW TODAY Newspaper that the senior lawyer observed the men entering her premises after hearing noises coming from the front door.

According to the source, the intruders gained entry by smashing the glass of the door.

The source who spoke on condition of not being identified said that in an effort to secure herself, the Queen’s Counsel sought refuge in her bedroom by locking it.

However, the two intruders whom she was unable to identify broke down the door.

During the onslaught on the female attorney, the bandits threatened to kill her if she did not give them money.

They were provided with $350.00, and also robbed Clyne-Edwards of a quantity of jewelry and her BlackBerry Cellular Phone.

Prior to the attack on Clyne-Edwards, the house of attorney Kaisha Ince was also broken into while she was away from home.

This newspaper learn that Ince who is attached to the Attorney General’s Chambers lost a camera with various lens, and a quantity of alcohol beverages from her Fort Jeudy home.

The incidents happened at a time when the Grenada Bar Association (GBA) was celebrating its annual Law Week.

Police are continuing their investigations in these two attacks and several other crime related incidents in recent weeks on the island.

 

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea

As I ponder on the above headline, two institutions of our society come into view with disturbing consequences to my mind. The Church and the tyranny of the State, I truly tremble.

Our citizens are caught between two forces that are making mince meat of our poor believing and trusting brothers. I am not sure which of these two entities first emerged on the scene; however, I would hazard that it was the church when one realises that every society “primitive” or “civilised” have some concept of a superior being – God.

And Western society has invested this God with reward and punishment – Heaven where everything is golden, if you are a “good” boy or girl and Hell and damnation – burning in everlasting fire if you are “bad”.

The Pope, Priest or Pastor to whom their “God speaks occasionally decides when you are good or bad.” Good, if you go to church every Saturday or Sunday and bring your tithes to “Papa” to keep him and the family clean and well fed while you are catching your “nen-nen” to feed your little ones.

How cruel and conniving are these creatures in their frocks, robes, skull caps and stiff collared vestments that elevate themselves to a level of holiness. What arrogance!

But what is so sad that these fakes, those phonies, instill fear and doubts among their believers as they prey upon innocents. They prosper most in countries that are poor and less educated, that’s their verdant pastures, hence I am not surprised at the proliferation of so many religions in Grenada, even the Mormons and Muslims have found a grazing field here.

It became quite clear why the founding fathers of the American Revolution saw fit to make a distinct separation between Church and State in their Constitution.

I am aware that it is perilous to generalise, so let me apologise here to the few good men and women of the clergy who performed admirably in serving the poor, sick and deserving among us.

With the blessing of the Church, the State represented by the Prince or Prime Minister is empowered to do as he pleases and this goes back in time immemorial to the Pharoahs even to the Sumar civilianization before Egypt.

However, it annoys me that after the millennia, vestiges of this system survives today. When the Prime Minister and his cohorts can do as they damn well please with our land and taxpayers money with utter silence from the Church and the Fourth Estate (the media) I say dog eat our supper.

But Lau-dea. God be praised. In his limitless wisdom and mercy he always takes care of the defenseless against the infidels.

Right now we are financially and economically in the waste land. In short we are experiencing real hell. The country is broke. Grenada is in the poor house, yet the Prime Minister is creating big paying positions and dispensing largesse for his men and women currying favour to individuals in areas he fears could expose his misdeeds.

Take for example, the media (journalists) both print and electronic – (the Fourth Estate) that should be protecting the nation’s interest. It is sad and depressing when most of us who ought to know better can easily be bought with position of “power” or hard cash.

Shame on you guys. If you read this you know whom I am talking about. As I told some of you before don’t mess with the metaphysical. Keith Mitchell’s Karma go grab you too!

The poor chap has no feeling for the economic hardship his countrymen are now going through. Now is not the time for him and his gang to be flying First Class abroad and staying in expensive hotels, sampling the rare wines and upscale menus, living the good life like Resteiner.

On the 22nd of July this year, I was shocked to see him in First Class with a retinue including Emmalin Pierre. They looked so sheepish it was not funny. I guess something told them it wasn’t right. Peter David was among them too but he flew economy class. Guess it was too chancey for the Prime Minister to book him first class too.

I mention the above to show the mentality of our PM. This is not the time to spend recklessly. This is the time to tighten our belts and save what little we can. This is the time to utilise our God-given resources; and heaven knows we have an abundance of that.

But the PM cannot see our numerous resources; he is too busy begging and helping to spend other peoples’ money. Productive labour is the man’s enemy; his de-bushing programme is a fine example of his lack of vision. This man is hell bent on power, controlling the police, the Media and the Church.

I am appealing to my fellow Grenadian brothers and sisters all – to wake up and smell the coffee! Do not be bamboozled by the State, nor the Church. Everyone has a role to play – ‘each one teach one”.

The welfare of Grenada must be to everyone’s benefit, not to a chosen few. “A single individual can raise the value of a whole nation. “Both the Church and State will do all they can to keep us poor and ignorant, that’s their feeding trough.

Remember “ he who controls others may be powerful but he who is master of himself is mightier still”. I think that Mott Green was heaven sent to us – he left us a template. Let’s build on it.

Dennis Canning

Six-Year Old Boy Raped

Another schoolboy has been allegedly raped on the island.

This time the victim is a six-year old who attends a primary school in the south of the island.

The incident allegedly took place on the school compound while the young boy was on his lunch break.

Police are said to be investigating the report of the sexual assault on the boy that was made to them by the mother.

The accused person who resides at Frequente, St. George’s had allegedly raped his own sister some years ago.

Police were looking up to Monday night for the suspect to question him in connection with the allegation.

A well-placed source told THE NEW TODAY Newspaper, the school boy was playing in nearby bushes around the school with some of his friends and that after they left him, the accused approached the six-year old and forcefully had sex with him through his buttocks.

The source said the school fraternity was unaware of the incident until a party of Police Officers swooped down on the compound last week as part of their investigation.

This latest sexual assault of the six-year old took place one month after another student at the same school, aged eleven, was also allegedly raped by a 15-year old resident of Fontenoy, St. George’s.

This newspaper learnt that parents are expressing concern over what they perceive to be the lack of security at the school.

There are reports that since the previous incident, a parent moved swiftly to remove her son from the institution.

 

High Court forced to close

High Court Judge Madam Justice Paula Gilford was forced to abort the proceedings of a rape case on Monday due to the unsatisfactory state of the courtroom.

Justice Gilford was forced to act as weekend rain penetrated the roof of High Court Number Two causing the rainwater to settle inside of the courtroom.

A source close to the High Court told THE NEW TODAY Newspaper, the rainwater that settled on the inside left a bad stench, which was unbearable when the court resumed on Monday.

He said the odour seemingly affected the entire court including the lawyers assembled in the room, as well as jurors.

The authorities were called in to engage in a mopping up and cleaning up exercise to get the court in a more hospitable state for resumption of the case on Tuesday.

In recent times, lawyers have been complaining about the suitability of the building to serve as a high court.

The lawyers have cited the lack of facilities to adequately keep accused persons from getting into contact with jurors and of proper facilities for interaction between barristers and their clients in a courtroom setting.

The rape case involves – Todd Sylvester and Kenston Grimes – who are being represented by the Law Firms of Grenlaw Chambers and Justis Chambers.

 

The man called Byron Campbell

Regarding Byron Campbell’s appointment at MAREP, I don’t see how this man, who did so much stupidness along with his Board of Directors at the Building & Loan with people’s money, could be pushed up the ladder so to speak.

It seems as though if you do certain things in Grenada the better are your chances of being promoted, rewarded or recognised.

 

Phillip Simpson

No ease in price hikes

Brian FrancisBy Dr. Brian Francis

 

Grenada is categorically at a crossroad. Traditionally, discussions about the state of the economy would focus on macroeconomic issues such as employment/unemployment, public debt, fiscal deficit, and trade balance. Inflation, for the most part, was seen as low to moderate, thereby creating little room for panic or debate.

Today, the circumstances have changed dramatically. The end result is that the frequent and rapid increases in prices across the board are taking a toll on the Grenadian public and have become major talking points throughout the length and breadth of the country.

While it is easy to play the blame game, the truth is that no single factor or individual can be held accountable for the alarming rate at which prices for almost all of the basic goods and services consumed locally have been increasing over the past few months and years. And therefore, we as a society have to shoulder the responsibility for the price hikes that have been going on with no end in sight.

After all, the Government, through increases in taxes, fees, and other charges; has contributed to raising prices on many commodities in Grenada including the cost of airline tickets. The business sector, too, must accept their role in fostering the surge in prices by passing on excess costs to consumers and refusing to significantly lower their mark ups and profit margins.

And consumers, through their lack of willingness to maintain financial discipline and simply refuse to purchase some commodities when their prices increase, are hurting themselves in the process. But, the overall situation is not that straightforward, for it is vitally important to observe that what we as consumers in Grenada face is a serious problem – a problem based in part on the concept of the elasticity of demand.

You see, demand, like so many other macroeconomic aggregates, is influenced by several factors simultaneously. For those factors that are quantifiable, economists can easily estimate the associated elasticity of demand. Those estimates allow for the classification of goods and services as luxuries or necessities on the one hand. In other scenarios, the demand for those goods and services can be described as elastic or inelastic.

Logically, these various classifications have implications for the manner in which consumers are able to respond to price increases. For instance, when the demand for a good is inelastic, consumers would have little flexibility in responding to a price hike, leaving them to absorb the higher prices and by extension a greater expenditure on the commodity even when their consumption patterns have not changed one bit. The case of our monthly electricity bills comes immediately to mind.

In essence, therefore, the fight against continuously rising prices in Grenada has to be multi-dimensional, with inputs from the Government, businesses, and individuals. Outside of that framework, it would simply be “business as usual” and everyone in Grenada will continue to complain about increasing prices, but there would be little solutions.

And with the pending home-grown structural adjustment programme, some prices and taxes are likely to increase, making it even tougher for Grenadians to be able to afford essential goods and services. What a shame!

In the dire financial and economic situation now facing our beautiful country, I could only do like King Scholar and beg the Keith Mitchell led Administration to lead by example and prove to all and sundry that this is the perfect “time to deliver” for the sake of Grenada and Grenadians!

 

Dr. Brian Francis, the former Permanent Secretary in the local Ministry of Finance, is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of Economics at the Cave Hill Campus in Bridgetown, Barbados of the University of the West Indies).

Deliver Please, Mr. Gaddafi

I am kindly seeking a space in your newspaper to vent my views on a few burning issues I have been struggling with for some time now. It is not my wish though, to put you or your newspaper in a complicated situation given the fact that people can now be arrested and charged if their views and opinions offend the government and its affiliates.

So please Sir, read this thoroughly and do what you must to protect yourself and The New Today. Having said, I ask that you remain true to the numerous readers of this newspaper who look forward to the much needed insight and truth on issues that others refuse to bring to the open.

February 19th, 2013 was an imperative day but many Grenadians took it for granted. It was on this day we held the key to the future of Grenada. It was on this day we were given the democratic right to elect representatives whose priority is to focus on the needs of the people. And it was on this day we made the worst decision ever and placed the key in Mr. Gaddafi’s hand and told him, open all doors for you, your family, investors, questionable characters, NNP Candidates and their families, your worshippers and followers and NNPites.

With this key, we permitted him the opportunity he craved for four-and-a-half years – the opportunity to shut the doors on all Grenadians who cannot find it within themselves to support him, his team and his sightless vision.

Mr. Gaddafi never had Grenada’s interest at heart; it was a tsunami of pretense and malice. He had his worshippers push forward the things Grenadians wanted to hear and not the things we needed to hear based on economic realities. He echoed at the top of his obnoxious voice that NDC cannot get it right, that Uncle Tilly was clueless about growing the economy and that his economic advisors had all the answers.

Given the state of Grenada’s economy to date, clearly Mr. Gaddafi’s lies have grown teeth with time. Now his very own people are being beaten daily by the infinite lies he told them during his campaign for their votes. I for one got the impression that there will be seeds planted in roots nutritious enough to produce money as fruit and jobs as leaves.

The first issue is this new law. I am yet to believe that in 2013, in Grenada, Grenadians will be told what to say, to whom and when they should say it. Mr. Gaddafi is quite knowledgeable of what to come in Grenada, thus the invention of this law to silence anyone who would criticise his actions. I am baffled by the acceptance of this law by the “so-called seasoned media personnel.”

I know that the majority of them fully support Mr. Gaddafi and his team, their support was depicted in the bias coverage given last election. I concluded that press freedom, impartiality, and the voice of the people were the cornerstones on which the media was built. In Grenada however, that is not evident. The evidence is there to show that members of the media are all about moving up and on in positions gained based on party support and reporting on NNP’s behalf.

This is quite appalling and Ms. Noel, Titus and Augustine should be embarrassed of the work they put out to the public. I have always known that Grenada is a democratic society and my values are designed accordingly. Mr. Gaddafi cannot stifle my thoughts and silence my voice.

Secondly, the Ministry of Youth and the followers running it are certainly misleading the young people of the nation. The state of Grenada’s economy does not allow Ms. Pierre and her team to realistically provide opportunities for more than 3, 000 young people. She gave them that idea to hold earlier this year and we all know that she said things geared towards brainwashing the vulnerable.

It is my understanding that most, if not all the young people previously employed under the NDC administration were sent home. Those remaining are the very skilled ones; skilled in the sense that they play dead to see the funeral service they might get. By that I mean, they pretended to be NDC supporters when they felt the need to and well when the Miss. Youth touched down in the ministry they showed her how much they loved and appreciated her and the party she represents.

My niece was sent home with her associate degree after working in that department for three-and-a-half years because she is a well known supporter of the former government. And that is shameful! She told me that a certain person made mischief on her in an effort to keep his position and oh how he likes being in that position.

I remember her saying, “I wish I could tell Minister Simmons about this man, this man has nothing good to say about Minister Simmons you know.” I can now conclude that this man, like many others there definitely functioned like snake under grass.

My third problem is with the issuing of scholarship opportunities. I know there are numerous people to whom NNP have to deliver to for the votes received earlier this year. However, there are individuals and there will be many more in the coming years who simply deserve opportunities to further their education and will come forward for a government scholarship.

A Grenadian who applies and satisfies all the requirements should not be denied. A Grenadian whose intention is to make a meaningful contribution to his/her community but is not financially in a good position to do so should not be denied. I know of a young woman in St. Patrick whose parents are well known supporters of the NDC and she was told recently that her application cannot be found after she applied in February 2013.

She was also told that her application was not successful. When she asked why, an answer was not given. We know the answer to that; we know that she did not meet the political requirements.

I am sending a strict warning to Mr. Gaddafi and his gang, this is not Libya. You can exhibit behaviours in the capacity as a cruel dictator but you should know that you cannot influence the minds of all Grenadians. You were elected by 32, 000 people but you have to represent the 109, 590 (World Fact Book) people living here.

You are in no position to dictate to us when we speak and what we say. Your main responsibility is to deliver all you have promised starting now. You said you had everything needed to give Grenada a complete 360 turn around; investors on the airport, a united and capable team, money, jobs, the best economic advisors and also you have the vampires from the NDC.

I am yet to see a stone move; I am yet to see progressive movements. Wherever the delivery train is now, clearly it is on pause and the driver seems to be asleep. I ask that you Mr. Gaddifi take the proper medicine, so the driver can put this delivery train in the right gear so Grenadians can receive their delivery packages with all we need to survive.

 

Open Mouth