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NEPA briefs municipal corporations on proposed Cockpit Country Protected Area

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NEPA briefs municipal corporations on proposed Cockpit Country Protected Area

Saturday, August 24, 2019

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Fourteen representatives from municipal corporations in Trelawny, St Ann, St James, Manchester, Clarendon and St Elizabeth participated in a briefing on the proposed Cockpit Country Protected Area (CCPA) on Wednesday at the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) head office.

The meeting was convened to brief mayors, chief executive officers and other senior municipal representatives on the process adopted by the Government in declaring the proposed CCPA boundaries, explain the accompanying initiatives and actions for areas outside of the boundary, provide information and clarification on mandatory environmental impact assessment (and archaeological impact assessment) and the plans to develop and implement a management plan for the area.

Peter Knight, NEPA chief executive officer and government town planner who chaired the meeting, stated that “the Government, led by Prime Minister Holness, is to be credited with providing leadership and working diligently in partnership with the key environmental and planning agencies and departments and other stakeholders in collectively agreeing on a boundary referred to as the CCPA”.

The briefing included a presentation on the CCPA, highlighting its significance and raising awareness of the proposed CCPA as a no-mining zone as designated by the Cabinet.

Following the presentation, representatives from the municipal corporations sought clarification on issues regarding the CCPA, including the considerations in the definition of the proposed boundary and progress of the on-the-ground verification (“ground truthing”) process to outline the boundary.

“We are glad for this meeting so that we can relay these facts to our councillors. There is a lot of misinformation and the people have the right to be informed properly,” said Trelawny mayor, Councillor Colin Gager. “We do applaud the bold move by the prime minister to identify a boundary.”

Other mayors expressed similar sentiments, saying that the briefing was overdue and that they were now placed in a better position to assist with the dialogue on the CCPA.

Representatives from partner State entities, including the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Water Resources Authority, and the Rural Agricultural Development Authority were present at the briefing to respond to queries.

After extensive consultations and deliberations, the area designated as the proposed Cockpit Country Protected Area was announced in Parliament on November 21, 2017 by Prime Minister Holness.

The proposed CCPA spans six parishes — Trelawny, St Ann, St James, Manchester, Clarendon and St Elizabeth. The area comprises approximately 74,726 hectares and will be protected under law. This includes existing forest reserves, significant hydrological, ecological feature, and cultural and heritage sites. A management plan will be prepared in partnership with private landowners, local groups and other stakeholders.

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Schoolboy commended for service to adult club

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Schoolboy commended for service to adult club

Monday, February 24, 2020

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PORUS, Manchester – Porus High School student Dujon Carter came in for special mention recently at the Porus Primary School Parenting Club’s pre-Valentine’s Day tea party.

The 13-year-old grade 8 student was taken by surprise when the club’s vice-president, Dotlyn Parchment, who chaired the afternoon’s proceedings, invited him to the podium to be formally introduced to the guest speaker, Sergeant Patrae Rowe, chairman of the Jamaica Police Federation.

Nonplussed as to what he had done to deserve such an honour, young Carter, after a warm smile and handshake from the policeman, soon learned that he was being commended for his faithful and voluntary service to the parenting club.

The audience heard that although not meeting the criteria to be a member, young Dujon since his attendance at Porus Primary had developed an affinity for the club and though uninvited, had made himself available and handy, particularly at club functions.

His interest in the activities of the club continued after he graduated from Porus Primary and moved on to Porus High School down the road. It was then discovered that Dujon has a special talent of which the club could make good use — he playes the drums.

At the tea party, playing the conga drum, he joined veteran Baptist church guitarist Evadne Wellington to provide musical accompaniment during the club members’ entertainment package of rousing folk songs and a medley of popular R&B hits.

A major concern of the club, since its founding 20 years ago, is the difficulty of getting Porus fathers to become members.

The membership was heartened by Dujon’s natural interest and unsolicited participation, and Vice-President Parchment felt it fortuitous that the guest speaker was a suitable role model and mentor for Dujon and the young people of Porus.

Himself a native of Porus, Rowe had kind words of encouragement for the teen. He referenced his own experience as a boy in Harmons, a poor farming district, living in a home provided by the self-help charity organisation Food for the Poor, sharing ruefully his familiarity with…”sleeping on the floor”.

He recalled being slighted because of his poor circumstance when, as an adolescent, he sought to establish a romantic relationship with a community girl. He said it was whispered that he was not good enough for her and although devastated by her rejection, he said being turned down served to motivate him to make something of himself.

Now a 14-year veteran of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF), Rowe is well known in the public sphere as a vocal and staunch defender of the welfare and interest of the rank and file members of the JCF, whom he represents as head of the Jamaica Police Federation.

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This Day In History – February 24

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Today is the 55 day of 2020. There are 311 days left in the year.

TODAY’S HIGHLIGHT

2008: Raul Castro replaces brother Fidel as Cuba’s president.

 

OTHER EVENTS

1525: Spanish army, using muskets for first time in war, routs French and Swiss forces at Pavia, Italy, as 14,000 men are slain in battle.

1530: Charles V is crowned holy Roman emperor and King of Italy by Pope Clement VII at Bologna — the last imperial coronation by a pope.

1656: Spain declares war on England.

1830: King Louis-Philippe of France abdicates in the face of an insurrection in Paris, giving way to the Second Republic.

1891: China pays indemnity to Russia for return of Ili Valley in north-west China.

1920: Nazi Party is organised in Germany.

1945: Egypt’s Premier Ahmed Pasha is assassinated after announcing Egypt’s declaration of war against Germany.

1946: Juan Peron is elected for first of three presidential terms in Argentina.

1990: Candidates favouring independence run well in elections to the Supreme Soviet of Lithuania.

1992: Azerbaijani militants fire rockets into the capital of the breakaway region of Nagorno-Karabakh, killing four.

1993: With the lowest popularity rating in Canadian polling history, Prime Minister Brian Mulroney calls it quits after nine years in office.

1995: Breaking its silence with a fury rare in transatlantic diplomacy, the US Embassy accuses France’s interior minister of lying about a spy scandal.

1996: Cuban Government fighter planes shoot down two small aircraft belonging to an exile group flying off the coast of Havana.

1997: Nine army officers in Zaire declare that they will join the rebels under Laurent Kabila who seek to topple Mobuto Sese Seko.

1998: An armed band shoots and kills a socialist candidate and four supporters in northern India in election-related violence.

1999: The second killer avalanche hits western Austria in as many days, raising the death toll to 38.

2000: Betty Lou Beets, 62, is executed after Texas Governor George W Bush rejects her claim that she killed her fifth husband in self-defence and deserved a reprieve. She is the second woman executed in Texas since the Civil War.

2001: The French Government offers medical benefits and shelter to 908 shipwrecked Iraqi Kurds who have been living in a military camp since their rusty freighter washed onto the French Riviera a week before.

2002: The Winter Olympic Games concludes in Salt Lake City, Utah, with Germany winning the most medals in the games: 12 golds, 16 silvers and seven bronzes for a total of 35.

2003: Vojislav Seselj, leader of the ultranationalist Serbian Radical Party, surrenders to the UN International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia. He is charged with eight counts of crimes against humanity and six counts of war crimes.

2004: A 6.5-magnitude earthquake rocks a picturesque but impoverished region of northern Morocco, killing more than 550 people.

2007: The Virginia General Assembly votes unanimously to express “profound regret” for the state’s role in slavery, becoming the first in the US to pass such a measure.

2009: President Barack Obama makes his first address to Congress, warning the US has to start reckoning with its economic problems.

2010: Toyota chief executive Akio Toyoda apologises personally and repeatedly to the United States and millions of American Toyota owners for safety lapses that have led to deaths and widespread recalls.

2011: Discovery, the world’s most travelled spaceship, thunders into orbit for the final time, heading toward the International Space Station on a journey that marks the beginning of the end of the shuttle era.

2012: Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton blasts Russia and China as “despicable” for opposing UN action aimed at stopping the bloodshed in Syria.

2013: Pope Benedict XVI bestows his final Sunday blessing of his pontificate on a cheering crowd in St Peter’s Square.

 

TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS

Charles V, holy Roman emperor, king of Spain and archduke of Austria (1500-1558); Wilhelm Grimm, German author (1786-1859); George Augustus Moore, English novelist (1852-1933); Bettino Craxi, first socialist prime minister of Italy (1934-2000); James Farentino, US actor (1938-2012); Paula Zahn, US news correspondent (1956- )

 

— AP

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A jolt of laughter

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A jolt of laughter

Monday, February 24, 2020

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General Manager of Jewels Dunn’s River, Ann-Marie Goffe-Pryce is in stitches during a conversation with JPS President & CEO Emanuel DaRosa (right) and immediate past president of St Ann Chamber of Commerce Pixley Irons.

The occasion was a breakfast meeting at the hotel last Tuesday with JPS executives, members of the chamber, the St Ann and St Mary chapters of Jamaica Hotel and Tourism Association, and other business people in both parishes to discuss a number of pertinent issues related to the JPS’ short-to-medium term business plan.

(Photo: Aston Spaulding)


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Jamaica Day at Hatfield Primary

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Jamaica Day at Hatfield Primary

Monday, February 24, 2020

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Students at Hatfield Primary in Manchester were in a joyous mood when the Jamaica Observer Central visited on Jamaica Day last Friday (February 21). Jamaica Day, celebrated in schools across the country, is part of the Culture in Education Programme, run by the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information.

It seeks to celebrate the uniqueness of Jamaicans and the country’s contribution to the world.

(Photo: Gregory Bennett)


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Boys’ Town parenting classes showing signs of success

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For two mothers in Kingston, the Boys’ Town Family Care Centre (FCC) has been a blessing.

Markeisha Brown and Kemesha Bromly have attended parenting sessions on the premises of the infant and primary school for the year the programme has officially been in operation.

They are among 32 parents, including five fathers, who are working to embody the centre’s motto “to resuscitate families, rescue generations and break cycles”.

Brown started attending the classes while pregnant with her son in 2018, and gave birth to him just before the centre opened in November.

“It has taught me a lot about how to deal with my son. At the time when I was just starting the centre, I had my cousin that I was babysitting. She was spoiled and the centre helped me to change her, and get her ready for school. And I was also pregnant, so it helped me in two different ways. To get her ready for school, and how to deal with my baby when he was born,” Brown shared.

A year later, Brown has transitioned from regular classes at the centre to continuing her education at the HEART TRUST/NSTA facility on Marcus Garvey Drive.

“I used to go three times a week for parenting sessions as well as for maths and English class. I’m not going right now as regularly as I used to go, but that’s because I’m doing an early childhood course at Garmex Academy. So, it has really helped me a lot. Everything that I learned, I see it coming out in my work right now,” Brown revealed.

Bromly, a mother of four, also took the opportunity to increase her academic qualifications.

Along with the parenting sessions, she enjoyed tutoring in English language at the Caribbean Secondary Education Certificate level.

Introduced to the FCC at the Parent/Teachers’ Association meeting, Bromly said the centre has really helped her to function at home.

“From Monday to Thursday, I would go over the school to do the class. The parenting skills that they teach us help me to be better. Many people have changed since coming to the centre. There is a lady who used to handle her children a way. Every minute she lick them and since she come to the centre she learn how fi control harself and how fi treat har children,” she shared.

The Family Care Centre has been serving potential, new and experienced parents in the neighbouring Boys’ Town, Trench Town and Denham Town communities and founder Dr Christine Stennett revealed it is paving pathways in Jamaica with its programme.

“The FCC,” she elaborated, “is the only registered programme to host parents and children. There are intervention programmes that target either group, but we are the only one to target both. We use this programme to empower the parents, to encourage, and to demonstrate to them how to empower the children,” Dr Stennett said to the group.

The centre celebrated its first year with a large-format workshop on Friday, November 22, 2019.

The workshop afforded the cohort with sessions from Annette Richards, counselling psychologist; nurse Christine Lawrence; and Junior Rowe, principal and social worker at Riverton Early Childhood Centre.

Before the addresses, founder of the FCC Dr Christine Stennett and Anna Ward, executive director of the CB Facey Foundation (CBFF), the substantive sponsor of the centre, spoke to the parents.

For her and the group of volunteers who serve the parents from Monday to Thursday each week, seeing the change in their parenting practice was heartening.

Along with sessions to strengthen families and children, the FCC also offers educational/academic, psychosocial and economic training for the parents. The centre offers City & Guilds mathematics and English classes.

“One of the major achievements for us is getting our parents enrolled in HEART TRUST/NSTA programmes,” Dr Stennett shared. “Some never got an opportunity to finish school and now they are able to get serious training towards a career. Several are enrolled in childcare, cosmetology and food preparation training since becoming a part of the FCC.”

Ward, who runs the charitable arm of the PanJam Investment Limited, said it is important that the parents embrace lifelong learning.

“The FCC embodies so many values that we believe in at the CBFF — lifelong learning, integrity, paying it forward,” Ward said. “This is why we were on board from the inception of this project; to make sure that we could provide support for the parents of Boys’ Town and the surrounding communities.

“You have shown your commitment to be better and to do better for your children,” Ward finished.

Dr Stennett urged the parents in the group to pay it forward.

“We want you to go into your homes and be different; to lift the standards for the parents in Boys’ Town. We are here to serve the entire community, building one parent at a time,” Dr Stennett said.

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