Old woman burnt to death in downtown Kingston fire

Carlene Aird weeps for her mother who died in the fire yesterday. Photos: Garfield Robinson

The woman, who was said to be suffering from Alzheimer’s, was identified by her grieving daughter as Ellfreda Brown. The building, located at 7 to 11 West Street, which was once the home of the now defunct Jamaica Record newspaper, housed a furniture shop where police alleged that the fire ... Read More

Man, 2 children dead after gunmen shoot six in Hanover
HANOVER, Jamaica — A man and two children were last night shot dead in Williamsfield, Hanover ... Read More

Andrea Martin-Swaby PNP officials should be questioned in the open, says DPP
THE Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions yesterday urged the Court of Appeal to “err ... Read More

Jamaican teacher denies TCI child abuse allegations
A Jamaican teacher who is allegedly being sought for deportation from the Turks and Caicos Islands h ... Read More

Journalist Peter Abrahams dies at 97

Thursday, January 19, 2017    

ABRAHAMS… made Jamaica his home in the 1950s

PETER Henry Abrahams, the South African journalist and author who made Jamaica his home in the 1950s, was found dead at his Rock Hall, St Andrew, home yesterday. Abrahams, who is better known for his hard-hitting commentaries on Radio Jamaica, was 97. According to Encyclopedia Britannica, Abrahams, born March 19, 1919 near Johannesburg, was the most prolific of South Africa’s black prose writers, whose early novel Mine Boy (1946) was the first to depict the dehumanising effect of racism ... Read More

Ganja hidden in onion shipment; men charged

Thursday, January 19, 2017    

Compressed ganja (File photo)

A 64-year-old man, who allegedly tried to ship onions stuffed with 26 pounds of ganja to Antigua, was offered $300,000 bail when he appeared in the Kingston and St Andrew Parish Court last Friday. Pershard Smith was held on January 5 after he went to the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston to ship two cartons of onions. He was subsequently charged with possession of ganja, dealing in ganja, taking steps to export ganja, and conspiracy. Joama Myers, 43, who allegedly drove Smith to ... Read More

Wray and Nephew praised for big environmental push

BY KIMONE THOMPSON Associate editor — features | Thursday, January 19, 2017    

Prime Minister Andrew Holness (third right), representatives of government agencies, and Gruppo Campari executives from Italy listen to production supply chain director Jorgé Gonzalez (right) detail the functions and capacity of the company’s wastewater treatment facility during a tour of the plant at 234 Spanish Town Road yesterday. (Photo: Kimone Thompson)

Andrew Holness, the country’s de-facto environment minister, has recommended that businesses across the island adopt an eco-strategy similar to that which J Wray & Nephew unveiled at its manufacturing and bottling plant on Spanish Town Road in Kingston yesterday. The US$6-million eco-strategy features a solid waste recycling zone, a wastewater treatment plant, and a photovoltaic system. The recycling zone, which the company says repurposes more than 700 tonnes of waste per year, crus ... Read More

Baby born with Zika-related microcephaly?

BY KIMBERLEY HIBBERT Observer staff reporter | Thursday, January 19, 2017    

This February 12, 2016 file photo shows two-week-old Sophia, diagnosed with microcephaly, during a physical therapy session at the Pedro I hospital in Campina Grande, Brazil. (Photo: AP)

JAMAICA has recorded its first ‘probable’ case of Zika virus-related microcephaly. Chief Medical Officer (CMO) Dr Winston De La Haye last night confirmed that the ‘probable’ case involves a baby who was born in December at the Victoria Jubilee Hospital in Kingston, to a mother who had a rash during her pregnancy. The CMO told the Jamaica Observer that the Ministry of Health is now awaiting test results to determine the exact cause of the condition in the infant, while r ... Read More

US lifts gun ban

Thursday, January 19, 2017    

An Associate Press file photo of handguns on display at the annual gun show in Albany, New York, USA.

THE United States (US) has resumed the authorisation process for firearm export licences to Jamaica, lifting an almost two-month ban that was imposed in November last year. The US Embassy in Kingston said in a news release yesterday that the State Department has resumed the authorisation process, considering each case on its merits. The US last year suspended exports of guns to Jamaica amid growing controversy surrounding the Firearm Licensing Authority (FLA) at the time. The FLA was thrown i ... Read More

Attorney General: The UWI is not beyond the reach of the PAAC

BY ALPHEA SAUNDERS Senior staff reporter | Thursday, January 19, 2017    

THE Attorney General’s Department has thrown cold water on the University of the West Indies’ (UWI) insistence that as an autonomous regional body it is should be treated differently from the other public bodies which the Public Administration and Appropriations Committee (PAAC) of Parliament summons before it each week. The UWI had turned down a request from the PAAC to appear on October 12 last year as the committee reviewed the expenditures of bodies which fall under the Ministr ... Read More

For third-straight time Earth sets hottest year record

Thursday, January 19, 2017    

In this May 23, 2016, file photo, a man bath his son on a hot afternoon in a slum in Mumbai, India. For the third straight year, Earth set a record for the hottest year, NOAA and NASA announced. NASA says 2016 was warmer than 2015 - by a lot. It's mostly global warming with a little assist from the now-gone El Nino. (Photo: AP)

WASHINGTON, DC, USA (AP) — Earth sizzled to a third-straight record hot year in 2016, government scientists said yesterday. They mostly blame man-made global warming with help from a natural El Nino, which has since disappeared. Measuring global temperatures in slightly different ways, NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced that last year passed 2015 as the hottest year on record. NOAA calculated that the average 2016 global temperature was 58.69 degrees ... Read More

‘Make or break’ year for farmers, says JAS

BY JAVENE SKYERS Observer staff reporter | Thursday, January 19, 2017    

GRANT... country people run to town and there’s no land to farm in town

PRESIDENT of the Jamaica Agricultural Society (JAS) Norman Grant is calling on the Government to fix critical problems in the agricultural sector if it intends to achieve five per cent GDP growth in four years. Grant, who was speaking to the Jamaica Observer in a telephone interview on Tuesday, said the agricultural sector presents the best opportunity to achieve the country’s growth target of five per cent by 2020, which was set by the Economic Growth Council. The president explained th ... Read More

Finsac report to be ready by mid-year — Shaw

BY BALFORD HENRY Senior staff reporter | Thursday, January 19, 2017    

SHAW... made promise in election campaign to complete report

MINISTER of Finance and the Public Service Audley Shaw says that the report of the Finsac Commission of Enquiry, which ended sine die in November 2011, should be ready by mid-year. Shaw told the Jamaica Observer on Monday that an allocation of $35.7 million included in the 2016/17 budget, should take the delayed report to its conclusion by then. He said that it is possible that additional funding would be needed to complete the process after 2016/17, but indicated that this could be dealt with ... Read More

Free bus ride for Corporate Area cops

Thursday, January 19, 2017    

Minister of National Security Robert Montague in discussion with Acting Commissioner of Police Novelette Grant during Tuesday’s interactive session with heads of the Jamaica Constabulary Force at the Jamaica Conference Centre in downtown Kingston. (Photo: JIS)

POLICE officers in the Corporate Area will soon be able to ride the Jamaica Urban Transit Company (JUTC) buses free of charge. The initiative, which has resulted from a partnership between the ministries of national security, and transport and mining, will see the law-enforcement personnel benefiting from the service for approximately one year. This was disclosed by Minister of National Security Robert Montague during an interactive session with heads of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) at ... Read More



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