Thwaites lauds School Suspension Intervention Programme
Minister of Education Ronald Thwaites has lauded the work of the School Suspension Intervention Programme, noting that the initiative continues to change the lives of many students.
The programme, which is an initiative of the Dispute Resolution Foundation, in partnership with the Ministry of Education and the United Nations Children's Fund, targets youth with behavioural problems who are currently on suspension from school.
Under the initiative, they are taught anger management and conflict-resolution skills in an effort to curtail violent and disruptive behaviour.
Sports museum committee looks at 12-month completion goal
The committee spearheading the establishment of the national sports museum is looking to complete the project within the next 12 months.
The facility is being established by the Government to celebrate the achievements of Jamaica's sportsmen and women.
Chairman of the Capacity Building and Infrastructure Committee of the National Sports Council, which is in charge of the project, Don Anderson, said, "We have been very aggressively pursuing particular activities over the last four weeks."
Ministry moves to provide affordable housing solutions
Since the start of financial year 2013/14, the Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing has been moving to implement the Government's strategic priority of providing affordable housing solutions for Jamaicans.
Portfolio minister with responsibility for housing, Dr Morais Guy, said this is being done through a mixture of public/private partnerships, private development and state initiatives.
One such initiative is the Bernard Lodge Estates Development, comprising 1,584 housing solutions which will be built in five phases. The development entails studios and one-bedroom units.
Canada remains committed to assisting developing countries - Ready
Developing countries such as Jamaica will still be able to receive funding from Canada, despite the amalgamation of the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) and the Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade (DFAIT).
CIDA and DFAIT have joined to form a new Department of Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development.
"The goal of amalgamation is to leverage fully Canada's diplomatic, trade and development resources and expertise around the world. The amalgamation will improve the coordination of Canada's foreign policy, international trade and international development efforts," Robert Ready, the Canadian high commissioner to Jamaica, told The Gleaner yesterday.
Ready also noted that the amalgamation involves all of the former CIDA operations and, therefore, involves all countries in which these operations are taking place.
"The amalgamation will have no impact on Canada's international development budget. Canada's CDN$600 million Caribbean Regional Programme will continue as before," he said.
Former cop guilty of ex's murder
A Home Circuit Court jury late yesterday afternoon convicted former policeman Lescene Edwards of the 2003 murder of his former girlfriend, Aldonna Harris.
The jury returned the 11-1 guilty verdict after three hours of deliberation. Senior Puisne Judge Gloria Smith has put off sentencing until next Tuesday.
Edwards has denied having any involvement in the murder.
The body of his ex-girlfriend was found with a gunshot wound to her head at her home at Pembroke Hall, St Andrew, in September 2003. A suicide note was found inside her room, which the Crown argued was not written by the woman.
She had reportedly broken off a relationship with Edwards, who is the father of her children, and later got married.
Harris was killed five weeks after her wedding.
US deports 100 Jamaicans
Nearly 100 deportees were being processed by the police last night after they arrived in the island from the United States yesterday.
At press time, some of the deportees had been released to relatives and friends, who had converged on Harman Barracks in St Andrew.
A high-ranking police officer said deportees are usually returned to Jamaica the last Thursday of each month on a special flight.
He said they are processed by personnel from the National Intelligence Bureau "to capture as much information around them as possible" and released if they have not been linked to any crimes.
Gov't seeks to stimulate jobs, net large investments
The Government is to offer fiscal incentives in the form of tax relief, duty and fee waivers to entities seeking to implement large-scale projects or certain economic activities approved as pioneer industries.
The relief regime is contained in a bill seeking to provide income-tax relief to certain projects.
In order for entities to benefit from the relief structure, a company must satisfy the minister of finance that it will be creating a prescribed number of jobs, or will be making an investment above a certain sum.
The benchmarks for investment and job creation are not outlined in the bill, but the proposed law gives the minister, with the approval of Parliament, the power to set a figure.
The bill proposes that the minister, in designating a project as an approved large-scare project, must ensure that it "is likely to make a substantial contribution to Jamaica's economic growth and national development".
Before making an order, the minister must also be satisfied that the economic activity is consistent with the strategic objectives of the Government.
The minister must also ensure that the activities to be undertaken by the entity seeking designation are not being carried out in Jamaica on a substantial commercial basis, and involves the innovative use of technology, cultural assets or available resources.