Jamaica Observer http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/ JamaicaObserver.com, the most concise and in-depth website for news coverage on Jamaica and the Caribbean. Updated daily 7 days a week, 24 hours a day en-us copyright Jamaica Observer, 2011 Electricity wires stolen from poles in St Mary http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Electricity-wires-stolen-from-poles-in-St-Mary ST MARY, Jamaica &mdash; Councillor-elect for the Islington Division, Lincoln Dixon, is calling on the authorities to move speedily in providing electricity through the Rural Electrification Programme (REP) to Comesee Road, near White Hall in St Mary. <br /> <br /> Dixon made the call in light of the recent theft of about 50 per cent of un-energized wires installed on poles in the community.   <br /> <br /> &ldquo;They stole about 50 per cent of the wires off the poles,&rdquo; a very disgruntled Dixon said. <br /> <br /> Dixon expressed frustration at the length of time it was taking the REP to provide electricity to the community, despite residents making payments towards preparing their homes for the service.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;These people who have paid the $4,000 all now they don&rsquo;t hear anything,&rdquo; Dixon said.<br /> <br /> While upset that the wires were stolen, Dixon said had the wires been energized the theft would not have been possible.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;If something was done, they could not have touched the wires,&rdquo; he said. <br /> <br /> Earlier this year, the Jamaica Observer (Monday, July 18), in an article &ldquo;We hungry and thirsty for it-- Comesee Residents&rdquo;, highlighted the plight of the residents who said they were anxiously awaiting electricity in their community for years.<br /> <br /> For more than 30 years, the residents on Comesee Road have lived without legal electricity connection, many having to journey daily to the shop to purchase perishables because they don&rsquo;t have the means to store these items. <br /> <br /> The residents have also been the target of a number of robberies due to the lack of street lighting in their community. <br /> <br /> Dixon said he has been lobbying for electricity to be given to the community. Much of the infrastructure has been implemented, but since last year nothing else has been done in the area. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;They were put in before Christmas (2015). We were expecting that it would have been completed before Christmas that the lines would have been energized,&rdquo; Dixon said.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13485139/poles_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 4:38 PM Grammy nomination 'best birthday present ever', says Devin Di Dakta http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Grammy-nomination--best-birthday-present-ever---says-Devin-Di-Dakta KINGSTON, Jamaica &mdash; Dancehall/reggae artiste Devin Di Dakta, who celebrated his birthday yesterday, said he is overjoyed at being nominated for a Grammy Award adding that it is the &ldquo;best birthday present one could ever receive&rdquo;. <br /> <br /> The entertainer, who was a 2015 winner in the Magnum Kings and Queen Competition, told OBSERVER ONLINE that he cried for about half-an-hour after hearing the news. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;After about half an hour of tears of joy, I am now feeling overjoyed,&rdquo; said the artiste, who along with JL were nominated for the collaboration EP Sly & Robbie Presents Reggae For Her in the Best Reggae Album category for the 59th Grammy Awards. <br /> <br /> The collaboration features eight songs written by Devin Di Dakta and JL on the Tuff Gong International, Taxi Records label. <br /> <br /> Meanwhile, pop star Beyonc&eacute; is leading with nine nominations followed closely behind by Drake, Rihanna and Kanye West, who scored eight nominations each.<br /> <br /> Adele in the meantime has been nominated for album, record and song of the year. <br /> <br /> Other Reggae nominees include: Rose Petals (J Boog); Ziggy Marley (Ziggy Marley); Everlasting (Raging Fyah); Falling Into Place (Rebelution); and Soja: Live In Virginia (Soja). http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13485119/devin-2_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 4:18 PM Lotto scammers could also do prison time in the US http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Lotto-scammers-could-also-do-prison-time-in-the-US ST JAMES, Jamaica (JIS) &mdash; Minister of Justice, Delroy Chuck, says people doing prison time in Jamaica for lottery scamming could be extradited to the United States to face additional charges once their sentences are completed here.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;While the charges are similar in nature, there are other aspects to the crime why they would be wanted in the US,&rdquo; Chuck pointed out.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;I think it is fair to say that the American authorities would want to connect these lotto scammers with victims in the US. If the connection is made, then I could see the US wanting to extradite these criminals to face charges,&rdquo; he added.<br /> <br /> The justice minister was speaking in an interview with JIS News at a recent justice sensitisation session in Ocho Rios.<br /> <br /> Chuck said the ministry is committed to eradicating lottery scamming. &ldquo;No quarters or no shelter should be given to scammers,&rdquo; he said, adding that they are a blight on society and should be ostracised and made to pay for ruining lives.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;They have been preying on the elderly&hellip; the sick and the vulnerable. I want to say, and in the strongest language possible, that I want them to be tried in the circuit courts where they can do long sentences, and then, following that, we do everything to make them do even longer sentences in the US prisons,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> Meanwhile, Chuck pointed out that a great deal of money is being spent on upgrading and modernising the courts in order to improve the delivery of justice.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Everything has to be results-oriented and that is what we are all about in the criminal-justice system. A lot of money has been spent in training,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> Chuck said he was heartened by the fact that Jamaica has some of the best judges, prosecutors and clerks of court, whom, he noted, &ldquo;have been doing a very good job on the public&rsquo;s behalf&rdquo;.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;I am the first person to tell you that we still have a lot of work to be done. We have more courthouses to be rehabilitated and more work to ensure that cases are disposed of in a very timely manner,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484988/lottery-scam_w400_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 3:32 PM Boy chained with dead chicken around neck sues foster mom http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Boy-chained-with-dead-chicken-around-neck-sues-foster-mom NORTH CAROLINA, United States (AP) &mdash; A teen found chained to the porch of a house with a dead chicken around his neck is suing his former foster mother as well as social services officials and Union County, North Carolina.<br /> <br /> The boy, now 13, claims Wanda Sue Larson used "connections" with local officials to manipulate his custody and that Union County inadequately supervised her, according to reports from local news outlets.<br /> <br /> The former Union County social worker and her live-in boyfriend pleaded guilty to multiple child abuse charges. She was sentenced to 17 months in jail, while Dorian Harper got at least six years.<br /> <br /> County officials declined to comment on the suit filed last week by the boy's court-appointed lawyer. A phone number for Larson couldn't be found.<br /> <br /> Prosecutors said a deputy found the 11-year-old boy in 2013. He had been beaten and starved, and forced to sleep on a floor, chained to part of a railroad tie. They said the boy also had marks and scars on his body, a broken wrist and an infected hand, for which Larson never sought medical treatment.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484971/gavel-2_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 3:03 PM Six killed in vehicular crash in Trinidad http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Six-killed-in-vehicular-crash-in-Trinidad PORT OF SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC) &mdash; The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service (TTPS) Tuesday said six people were killed in a two vehicle smash up on the Churchill Roosevelt Highway, east of here, late Monday night.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;The Trinidad and Tobago Police Service continues to appeal to drivers to exercise caution, obey traffic laws and practice safe, responsible road use at all times,&rsquo; the TTPS said in a statement.<br /> <br /> Graphic images in the media from the crash scene show the broken bodies of the victims entangled in the wreckage of both vehicles, multiple ambulances, police officers and fire fighters, bodies covered with sheets lining the concrete median as well as stunned onlookers.<br /> <br /> Eyewitnesses said one of the vehicles broke the red light. One of the vehicles was carrying private security officers.<br /> <br /> The police have identified those killed as Che Peters, 24;  Karim Romaine; 24-year-old Traves Teague; Karim Romaine, 24; Timothy Fraser; Avanel Thomas; and Ramesh Narine. Thomas is the lone female among the dead.<br /> <br /> The police said that &ldquo;all six victims were pronounced dead at the scene&rdquo; and that the three lone survivors Kwame Romaine, Roxanne Johnson and Ramphal Hanoo are now at the Eric Williams Medical Sciences Complex.<br /> <br /> So far 124 people have been killed in vehicular crashes here this year and the advocacy group, Stay Alive,  has called on the authorities to crack down on speeding here. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484966/accident_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 2:55 PM NSWMA appoints Audley Gordon as executive director http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/NSWMA-appoints-Audley-Gordon-as-executive-director KINGSTON, Jamaica &mdash; The Board of Directors of the National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA) has appointed Audley Gordon to the position of executive director for the Authority effective Monday.  <br /> <br /> Gordon was previously employed to the NSWMA in the position of chief technical officer, where he has demonstrated an ability to get things done, the Authority said in a release today. <br /> <br /> &ldquo;He comes to the position with a mix of pragmatic and appropriate managerial training and exposure that the board believes will serve the authority well,&rdquo; the release said.  <br /> <br /> Gordon, a former Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) councillor representing the Hughenden Division in St Andrew North West, and who was also a deputy general secretary of the party, said in August that he had taken leave of all his political appointments to tackle the problems of the NSWMA.<br /> <br />  Chairman of the NSWMA Board of Directors, Dennis Chung pointed out that &ldquo;the directors were unanimous in appointing Mr Gordon to oversee the day-to-day management functions of the Authority&rdquo;. <br /> <br /> Chung further added &ldquo;in the interview conducted by the selection panel, Mr Gordon convincingly articulated a clear vision for the transformation of the Authority&rdquo;. <br /> <br /> This, according to the release, includes the future of solid waste management and public cleansing and will see the Authority effectively playing its role as regulators of the solid waste management sector and ensuring the safeguarding of public health. <br /> <br /> Additionally, he is to also commence the process towards having sanitary landfill in Jamaica that meets international standards.         <br /> <br /> &ldquo;The appointment of Gordon is the first step in strengthening the management capacity of the organisation, as we seek to transform the organisation into one that every Jamaican can be proud of,&rdquo; NSWMA added. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484913/Audley-Gordon_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 2:24 PM PNP retains seat after Magisterial Recount in Ginger Ridge Division http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/PNP-retains-seat-after-Magisterial-Recount-in-Ginger-Ridge-Division KINGSTON, Jamaica &mdash; The People&rsquo;s National Party (PNP) candidate for the Ginger Ridge Division, Ralston Wilson, has retained his hold on the seat after the now completed magisterial recount. <br /> <br /> The magisterial recount for the St Catherine West Central division was completed today. <br /> <br /> According to a news release from the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ), Wilson received 1,019 votes while the Jamaica Labour Party&rsquo;s Huit Johnson received 1,001. This brings the margin of votes to 18, up from the previous 16 votes determined by the EOJ.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484885/ballot-box2_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 1:59 PM Woman accused of killing 84-y-o man http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Woman-accused-of-killing-84-y-o-man HANOVER, Jamaica &mdash; The police have arrested a woman in connection with Saturday&rsquo;s murder of an elderly man in Salt Spring, Green Island, Hanover.<br /> <br /> Police reported that the body 84-year-old Enrique Johnson was discovered at his home about 7:00 pm by a friend who summoned them.<br /> <br /> The lawmen said on their arrival, they saw the body lying on the floor of the bedroom with chop wounds.<br /> <br /> The scene was processed and it was removed to the morgue pending a post mortem examination.<br /> <br /> The woman&rsquo;s identity is being withheld pending further investigations. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484846/Handcuffs--1-_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 1:37 PM Wife who killed husband with rat poison to be freed http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Wife-who-killed-husband-with-rat-poison-to-be-freed PENNSYLVANIA, United States. (AP) &mdash; A woman who pleaded guilty to killing her husband by slipping rat poison into his food and drinks will be released from prison next week.<br /> <br /> Joann Curley, 53, will be free on Monday after serving a 20-year sentence for the 1991 death of her husband, Robert Curley, prison officials told The Citizens Voice.<br /> <br /> "I don't feel she served enough time," the victim's sister, Susan Curley Grady, told the newspaper. "She should be serving a life sentence."<br /> <br /> Prosecutors say it took more than a year for Joann Curley to poison her husband to death for $300,000 in life insurance and to keep him from spending US$1.7 million she won in a lawsuit.<br /> <br /> Robert Curley was hospitalized in September 1991 with flu-like symptoms, complaining of debilitating pain in his palms and the soles of his feet, and began vomiting and losing his hair.<br /> <br /> Just as Curley began improving in the hospital, his wife visited, bringing pizza and thallium-spiked tea, authorities say.<br /> <br /> The same night, they say, he told a nurse, "Please help me. My wife is trying to kill me; she is not as she seems."<br /> <br /> His heart stopped the next morning.<br /> <br /> Two days earlier, his wife had won US$1.7 million in the death of her first husband, John, who was decapitated in an accident with a tractor-trailer on a foggy night nearly a decade before.<br /> <br /> She was charged with killing Robert Curley after a five-year investigation, which involved investigators exhuming his body under pressure from his sister.<br /> <br /> After his death, blood tests on both Joann Curley and her then-4-year-old daughter revealed traces of thallium in their systems, too. Authorities later determined she intentionally swallowed some of the poison and gave some to her daughter to throw suspicion onto her husband's co-workers.<br /> <br /> Police at first believed Robert Curley, an electrician, was poisoned by co-workers as a prank. Thallium, a metallic substance once used as an ingredient in rat poison, was stored at the Wilkes University lab where Curley worked.<br /> <br /> But investigators ruled that out after tests showed that Curley had 900 times the lethal dose of thallium in his system and that the poisoning had begun before he started working at the university.<br /> <br /> Tests on his hair showed he was poisoned repeatedly over 10 to 11 months.<br /> <br /> Joann Curley reached a plea deal in 1997 with prosecutors who intended to seek the death penalty.<br /> <br /> "It's over. I cannot do anything else. We kept her in there 20 years to the day. She'll be a free woman now," Curley Grady told The Citizens Voice. <br /> <br /> "Nobody knows where she'll go when she walks out of that place. She'll be able to go wherever she wants."<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484832/Jail--2-_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 1:26 PM ONLINE READERS COMMENT: What will be Simpson Miller's legacy? http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/ONLINE-READERS-COMMENT--What-will-be-Simpson-Miller-s-legacy- Dear Editor,<br /> <br /> It was Michael Moore, the noted US left-leaning documentary filmmaker and producer, who opined that the legacy of Barack Obama will be summed up in four sad words, "The First Black President."  <br /> <br /> This view emanated from the disenchantment which Mr Obama now evokes among the progressives within his Democratic Party. It is not an unfamiliar kind of disenchantment which now greets the announcement by the leader of the opposition People's National Party, Mrs Portia Simpson Miller that she will not be seeking another term at the helm of the 78-year-old political institution. <br /> <br /> Approaching what has now been confirmed as the swan song of a political existence, which has spanned some 40 years as a Member of Parliament, a decade of which has seen her "preside" over the affairs of her party, and occasionally, our country.<br /> <br /> The question, which now cannot be sidestepped is that asked of all leaders, "What will be your enduring legacy?"  <br /> <br /> There can be no doubt that Simpson Miller has risen from the lowest of beginnings to occupy the highest of stations, and even more poignant is the fact that she has been Jamaica's first and, to date, only female head of Government.<br /> <br /> But, with all that said, what else can truly be said of Simpson Miller's time at the zenith of Jamaican political power? Was she transformational? Did she shatter the glass ceiling only to succeed in littering the pathway of any future female aspirant with dangerous broken glass? Were her achievements primarily personal or did Jamaica benefit from her leadership?  <br /> <br /> One suspects that in the days to come, many factors, including the orange colour junkies, will play a part in the answering of these questions. <br /> <br /> One only hopes that her legacy, with respect to Jamaica, won&rsquo;t be easily summed up in four sad words, "First Female Prime Minister."<br /> <br /> Noel Matherson http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484799/pen.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 12:53 PM C'bean gov'ts urged to improve budget management to raise living standards http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/C-bean-gov-ts-urged-to-improve-budget-management-to-raise-living-standards SANTIAGO, Chile (CMC) &mdash; Latin America and Caribbean governments will need to improve public sector management and capacity, including budget allocation, to compensate for the pressure on public finances from sliding commodity prices, according to a new report by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation (OECD) and the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB).<br /> <br /> The second edition of &ldquo;Government at a Glance: Latin America and the Caribbean,&rdquo; covers Brazil, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Haiti, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, El Salvador, Panama, Dominican Republic, Colombia, Chile, Paraguay, Jamaica and Peru.<br /> <br /> It states that restoring stagnant productivity, reducing income disparities and improving social safety nets will require better managed government spending and overall public governance.<br /> <br /> The report finds that public spending on public schools and hospitals can ease income inequality &ndash; but governments in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC) mostly under invest in such public services.<br /> <br /> In all, LAC countries spend just 8.7 per cent of gross domestic product (GDP) on average on social programmes like education, health, unemployment benefits and pensions compared with 16.8 per cent in OECD countries.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;A combination of stagnant productivity, high inequality and low revenue collection is putting a pinch on LAC governments. There is very limited room to expand public budgets, so LAC governments will need to better target their public spending and improve policy design to ensure better living standards for citizens,&rdquo; said OECD Deputy Director of Public Governance and Territorial Development, Luiz de Mello, launching the report at an international ministerial meeting on Productivity and Inclusive Growth here.<br /> <br /> Vicente Fretes Cibils, IDB Division Chief for Fiscal and Municipal Management said that in the last decade, Latin America and the Caribbean combined growth with a better income distribution, supported by favourable external conditions that facilitated the region&rsquo;s growth and fiscal management.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;With a less favourable international scenario, governments must improve the efficiency and effectiveness of public spending. That means better design and implementation of public programs so they can ensure every penny spent can contribute to the reduction of social inequality and poverty and increase productivity in order to improve people&rsquo;s quality of life,&rdquo; he added.<br /> <br /> Among the key findings of the report include the size of the state varies across LAC countries but is generally relatively small. Government spending in the LAC countries studied averages 31 per cent of GDP compared with 41.5 per cent in OECD countries, although the gap is decreasing.<br /> <br /> Similarly, public employment as a share of total employment averages 12.4 per cent in LAC countries compared with 21.6 per cent in OECD countries.<br /> <br /> The report also notes despite recent progress, LAC remains a highly unequal region in terms of household income, as demonstrated by an average Gini coefficient after taxes and transfers of 0.49 in the region compared with 0.29 in OECD countries.<br /> <br /> It said LAC governments could contribute to economic productivity in the region by lowering barriers to trade and investment, which are much higher than for the OECD area. Product market regulations also tend to be more restrictive in LAC countries.<br /> <br /> The report also notes that fiscal policy plays a more limited role in income distribution in LAC than in OECD countries due to the low distributive impact of tax and benefit systems.<br /> <br /> Among the findings of the report is that leadership and co-ordination by centres of government have increased, but they still focus more on procedures than policy content. LAC governments also lack a culture of policy evaluation that can lead to better design, budgeting and implementation.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;In terms of quality of public services, most LAC countries now have a national citizen portal as a single point of access to government services. However, to reap the full benefits of these portals, new technologies should be adopted across governments.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Governments in the LAC region are making efforts to have their data openly available to the public. However, they could do more to facilitate its use by citizens and engage with them in designing solutions that will meet their expectations and needs,&rdquo; the report noted. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484787/IDB-report1-300x251.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 12:34 PM Trump says new Air Force One too costly: 'Cancel order!' http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Trump-says-new-Air-Force-One-too-costly---Cancel-order-- WASHINGTON, United States (AFP) &mdash; President-elect Donald Trump called Tuesday for the cancellation of a multi-billion dollar Boeing contract to build the next Air Force One, calling the ballooning costs "ridiculous."<br /> <br /> "Boeing is building a brand new 747 Air Force One for future presidents, but costs are out of control, more than US$4 billion. Cancel order!" Trump tweeted.<br /> <br /> Converting a pair of 747-8 jumbo jets to state-of-the-art luxury command centers by 2024 had been estimated to cost US$3 billion when Boeing was picked for the job in January 2015.<br /> <br /> The legendary light blue and white liveried jets &mdash; "United States of America" emblazoned on the fuselage and an American flag on the tail &mdash; are a powerful symbol of US might.<br /> <br /> But the current double-decker 747-200s, first ordered by Ronald Reagan and put into service in 1990, are getting old.<br /> <br /> Earlier this year, the Air Force issued the first of a series of contracts for the project to build new ones.<br /> <br /> Ironically, it was a US$25.7 million effort to look at ways to cut the costs of fielding the next presidential aircraft.<br /> <br /> Instead, cost projections have apparently ballooned, prompting Trump's outburst.<br /> <br /> "I think Boeing is doing a little bit of a number. We want Boeing to make a lot of money, but not that much money," the president-elect told reporters at Trump Tower, his Manhattan headquarters.<br /> <br /> He said the estimated US$4 billion cost was "totally out of control" and "ridiculous".<br /> <br /> Boeing had no immediate comment.<br /> <br /> Prestige items like Air Force One have been targeted before because of spiralling costs.<br /> <br /> In 2009, President Barack Obama halted a project to replace the Marine One helicopters that ferry the president.<br /> <br /> Costs had soared to nearly US$11.5 billion after the 28 helicopters were ordered in 2005. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484719/Trump_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 11:47 AM Unidentified man&rsquo;s body found under May Pen Bridge http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Unidentified-man-s-body-found-under-May-Pen-Bridge CLARENDON, Jamaica &mdash; A man&rsquo;s body was this morning found beneath the May Pen Bridge in Clarendon, the police have reported.<br /> <br /> The authorities were summoned to the area about 8:00 am by residents who stumbled on the body.<br /> <br /> A cause of death is pending an autopsy.<br /> <br /> The May Pen Police, who are investigating death, are now trying to ascertain the man&rsquo;s identity.<br /> <br /> More information later.<br /> <br /> Racquel Porter<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484598/Body-found_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 11:20 AM &lsquo;MS Monarch&rsquo; docks at Port of Kingston http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/-MS-Monarch--docks-at-Port-of-Kingston KINGSTON, Jamaica &mdash; The Port of Kingston this morning welcomed its largest ever cruise ship, &lsquo;MS Monarch&rsquo;.<br /> <br /> The ship, operated by Royal Caribbean&rsquo;s Pullmantur Brand, docked at Kingston Wharves about 6:00 am with 2,700 passengers on board.<br /> <br /> Vice President, Cruise Shipping and Marina Operations at the Port Authority of Jamaica, William Tatham said the ship was unable to secure berths on Jamaica&rsquo;s north coast as those at the Montego Bay and Falmouth ports are full.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;It&rsquo;s a very short call. It comes in very early... and it&rsquo;s going to depart at 1:00 pm,&rdquo; he noted.<br /> <br /> He said the decision to call on Kingston was secured after discussions between the Port Authority of Jamaica and the cruise operators in 2015.<br /> <br /> Tatham said tours of historic locations in and around Kingston including Port Royal, Devon House and Bob Marley Museum have been planned for the passengers.<br /> <br /> Visits have also been planned for Spanish Town, St Catherine and Dunn&rsquo;s River Falls in St Ann.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484131/MS-Monarch_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 10:23 AM Ransomed &mdash; The freeing of 226 Christians from Islamic State http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Ransomed--the-freeing-of-226-Christians-from-Islamic-State SAARLOUIS, Germany (AP) &mdash; The millions in ransom money came in dollar by dollar, euro by euro from around the world. The donations, raised from church offerings, a Christmas concert, and the diaspora of Assyrian Christians on Facebook, landed in a bank account in Iraq. Its ultimate destination: the Islamic State group.<br /> <br /> Deep inside Syria, a bishop worked around the blurred edges of international law to save the lives of more than 200 people - one of the largest groups of hostages yet documented in IS's war in Syria and Iraq. It took more than a year, and videotaped killings of three captives, before all the rest were freed.<br /> <br /> Paying ransoms is illegal in the United States and most of the West, and the idea of paying the militants is morally fraught, even for those who saw no alternative.<br /> <br /> "You look at it from the moral side and I get it. If we give them money we're just feeding into it, and they're going to kill using that money," said Aneki Nissan, who helped raise funds in Canada. But, he said, there were more than 200 lives at stake, "and to us, we're such a small minority that we have to help each other."<br /> <br /> The Assyrian Christians were seized from the Khabur River valley in northern Syria, among the last holdouts of a dwindling minority that had been chased across the Mideast for generations. <br /> <br /> They trace their heritage to the earliest days of Christianity, their Church of the East founded by the apostle known as Doubting Thomas. <br /> <br /> To this day, they speak a dialect of Aramaic, believed to be the native language of Jesus. But most also speak Arabic and some Kurdish, the languages of the neighbours who have long outnumbered them.<br /> <br /> In a single night of horror on February 23, 2015, IS fighters attacked the Christian towns simultaneously, sweeping up scores of people and sending everyone from 35 towns and villages fleeing for their lives.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13484012/Islamic-State-Christi_Thom_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 10:07 AM Six nominees for Reggae Grammy...Beyonce leads nominations at 9  http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Six-nominees-for-Reggae-Grammy--Beyonce-leads-nominations-at-9 KINGSTON, Jamaica &mdash; The nominations for the 59th Grammy Awards were today announced in Los Angeles, with six nominees selected for Best Reggae Album.<br /> <br /> The nominees include: Sly & Robbie Presents Reggae For Her &ndash; Devin Di Dakta and JL; Rose Petals (J Boog); Ziggy Marley (Ziggy Marley); Everlasting (Raging Fyah); Falling Into Place (Rebelution); and Soja: Live In Virginia (Soja).<br /> <br /> Read: Who will make the cut?<br /> <br /> Meanwhile, Pop diva Beyonce led nominations for the Grammy Awards with nods in nine categories, the Recording Academy.<br /> <br /> Beyonce was followed at eight nominations each by Drake, Rihanna and &mdash; after a change in Grammy rules to consider streaming-only releases &mdash; Kanye West.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13483965/grammys-2016--1-_w300.jpg Local Entertainment Tuesday, December 06, 2016 9:47 AM Promoters without relevant permits will be prosecuted &mdash; JCF http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Promoters-without-relevant-permits-will-be-prosecuted---JCF KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) &mdash; The Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) is urging party promoters to get the relevant permits before hosting events.<br /> <br /> Speaking at a JIS &lsquo;Think Tank&rsquo; on December 2,  Head of the JCF&rsquo;s Corporate Communications Unit (CCU), Superintendent Stephanie Lindsay, said party promoters will be prosecuted if they do not abide by the laws and regulations that govern events in the country.<br /> <br /> Lindsay explained that organisers need to submit their applications for a permit at least 10 days prior to the event.<br /> <br /> She said the request should be made to the superintendent or the senior police officer in charge of the parish/division in which the event is being held.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Before the permit is granted, you need to provide the officer with accurate information about the type of event, the nature of the event, who your target group is and the number of people that is expected to be in attendance,&rdquo; she explained.<br /> <br /> Lindsay pointed out that promoters must have all the special permits as stated by law. She said these include the permit from the Jamaica Fire Brigade and the Jamaica Music Society, and a spirits licence.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;All these things will have to be presented to the superintendent before he or she can grant the permit. In the case of Kingston and St Andrew, there is the KSAC permit that is given at the parish council,&rdquo; she noted.<br /> <br /> She explained that the officer in charge has seven days to assess the documents, inspect the venue and advise whether the permit will be granted. <br /> <br /> Superintendent Lindsay noted that if a person is not granted a permit, he or she can appeal within seven days after refusal to the Commissioner of Police, outlining why the decision taken is being contested.<br /> <br />  &ldquo;These laws are to protect the patrons that are coming to your events. Organisers must take into consideration the safety and security of the patrons. We (JCF) want the patrons to be safe,&rdquo; she emphasised.<br /> <br /> The superintendent said that handing in all the documents does not guarantee the permit to keep the event. &ldquo;If an investigation is done and the police are not satisfied that you have put adequate security measures in place, you will be advised to do so.  If something is happening in a particular community that will impact public gathering, then we will decline the permit,&rdquo; she added.<br /> <br /> She said even though the law gives a minimum requirement of 10 days before the activity, the promoters should not wait until the last minute to apply, but should give themselves enough time in case they need to make an appeal.<br /> <br /> Promoters are also urged to abide by the provisions of the Noise Abatement Act. &ldquo;By law, permission is given to have an event up to 12 midnight during the week and 2:00 a.m. on weekends,&rdquo; Superintendent Lindsay noted.<br /> <br /> She said no police has the right to overturn the law that governs the Noise Abatement Act, so patrons should conform to the times given.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13483900/Lindsay_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 9:35 AM Pakistan to probe hiring of 50 gov't employees from one family http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Pakistan-to-probe-hiring-of-50-govt-employees-from-one-family KARACHI, Pakistan (AFP) &mdash; Pakistani authorities promised an inquiry on Tuesday after a southern province was found to have employed almost 50 members of the same family in various health ministry jobs, many in the same hospital.<br /> <br /> Corruption and nepotism is rampant in Pakistan when it comes to hiring government employees.<br /> <br /> But the sheer number of the appointments &mdash; from vaccinators to security guards to lab technicians &mdash; has attracted the attention of the Supreme Court which will begin a hearing from Wednesday.<br /> <br /> The matter surfaced when a man filed a petition complaining provincial health department had recruited some 48 cousins in the Ghotki district of Sindh province.<br /> <br /> "Since 2008 till recently more than four dozen members of Chadhar family have been appointed by the authorities," complainant Farman Ali Pitafi, a health department employee, told AFP, adding they were all cousins.<br /> <br /> He said many of the family members were appointed in subordinate grades but quickly promoted.<br /> <br /> The provincial health minister Sikandar Ali Mandhro said he was unaware of the matter but would look into it.<br /> <br /> Pakistan ranks 117th out of 168 on Transparency International's list of global corruption, where a higher number denotes greater graft. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13483888/Investigation1_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 9:16 AM PNP hopes to retain hold on KSAC with Rae Town magisterial recount http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/PNP-hopes-to-retain-hold-on-KSAC-with-Rae-Town-magisterial-recount KINGSTON, Jamaica &mdash; People&rsquo;s National Party (PNP) supporter Wendy McGlashan yesterday submitted documents to the Sutton Street Court House requesting a magisterial recount for the Rae Town Division of the Kingston Central constituency.<br /> <br /> McGlashan, an elector of Rae Town, was part of the team at the final count held at the Electoral Office of Jamaica (EOJ) on November 29, a release from the PNP said.<br /> <br /> She noted in her affidavit, according to the release, that &ldquo;during the counting process I observed numerous instances where the returning officer rejected ballots cast in favour of the PNP candidate, Shawn McGregor, where the voters indicated their intention by way of a tick or multiple Xs&rdquo;.<br /> <br /> Read: How ballots are rejected<br /> <br /> The PNP said this led to the result with Rosalee Hamilton elected councillor over Shawn McGregor by 21 votes. With McGregor having the majority of the 68 rejected votes, McGlashan believed this result was incorrect and unjust to the people of Rae Town and should be corrected, the release added.<br /> <br /> Hearing for the matter is set for Monday, December 12. "The Court Bailiff<br /> <br /> has the summons for the EOJ and other parties in hand and will serve them at<br /> <br /> the soonest possible time," the PNP said.<br /> <br /> Meanwhile, the party noted that victory in the Rae Town Magisterial Recount would lead to a 20-20 overall count within the KSAC for both the governing party and the Opposition.<br /> <br /> In the case of a tie, per the Local Governance Act 2016, the election of chairman (formerly known as the mayor) of the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation would go to the political party with the most number of votes in the overall area.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;As the KSAC overall was won by the PNP by more than 4100 votes, the election of the leader of the KSAC would go accordingly. The deputy mayor would be elected by the JLP,&rdquo; PNP explained.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13483860/KSAC1_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 8:33 AM Tufton to be quizzed on baby deaths today http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Tufton-to-be-quizzed-on-baby-deaths KINGSTON, Jamaica &mdash; Health Minister Dr Christopher Tufton is expected to address questions regarding neonates at the Victoria Jubilee Hospital at today&rsquo;s meeting of the House of Representatives.<br /> <br /> The questions, which are being asked by Opposition spokesman on Health Horace Dalley include:<br /> <br /> (i) How many babies have died at the Victoria Jubilee Hospital (VJH) from Sepsis since May 2016?<br /> <br /> (ii) How many babies have died at the University Hospital of the West Indies (UHWI) and Cornwall Regional Hospital from Sepsis since May 2016?<br /> <br /> (iii) How many babies have died from Sepsis across the Nation&rsquo;s hospitals since May 2016?<br /> <br /> (iv) Whether or not there are autopsy reports for all the neonates that have died at VJH since May 2016?<br /> <br /> (v) What percentage of the babies delivered at VJH has been admitted to the special care nursery since May 2016?<br /> <br /> (vi) What investigations have been done to find the cause of the number of babies admitted to the nursery at VJH, and what corrective measures have been put in place?<br /> <br /> (vii) How many still-births have been recorded at VJH since May 2016?<br /> <br /> (viii) What measures have been put in place to investigate the causes and to remedy the number of still-births at VJH?<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13483817/Christopher-Tufton_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 8:10 AM Cuba starts return to normal as mourning for Castro ends http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Cuba-starts-return-to-normal-as-mourning-for-Castro-ends HAVANA, Cuba (AP) &mdash; Music is playing in the streets again. Tourists are sipping mojitos at sidewalk cafes. Flags are flapping at full staff. After nine days of national mourning for Fidel Castro, Cuba is slowly returning to noisy, boisterous normality.<br /> <br /> Cuba is a country where sidewalks serve as living rooms and social clubs, but during the mourning period people mostly stayed indoors, watching television and avoiding any appearance of joviality.<br /> <br /> With a government ban on selling alcohol and on playing live or recorded music after Castro's death, Cubans paid tribute to their long-time leader in near silence. They filed by the hundreds of thousands through special sites equipped with photos of Castro as a young guerrilla and books where people could separately sign both their condolences and an oath of loyalty to Castro's socialist, single-party system.<br /> <br /> "It was very quiet. In a bar, restaurant, you could hear the air conditioning," Janine Jenner, a German tourist, said Monday as she had a glass of sangria in Old Havana. "Today it's like someone turned the noise on everywhere. It's like the pulse of the city is back. People smile more."<br /> <br /> Clamor is a constant in Cuba. Music of all types &mdash; salsa, reggaeton, pop &mdash; blares at top volume at all hours of the day. People rev motorcycle engines for hours under their neighbour&rsquo;s windows, or flatten hundreds of soda cans for recycling at 7:00 am on a Saturday.<br /> <br /> All that noise suddenly hushed the morning after Castro's November 25 death was announced. Even the incidental noise of Cuban life &mdash; children laughing while playing in the streets, neighbours shouting to each other &mdash; seemed to fall away.<br /> <br /> Life started creeping back on Monday.<br /> <br /> Bars and cafe were selling alcohol again and Cubans could be seen discretely sipping beers on stoops or drinking from little boxes of cheap white rum. The crowds of foreigners wandering through Old Havana were more overt, chugging beers on the street and dancing with drinks in hand as bands played for the first time in more than a week in tourist cafes.<br /> <br /> People were once again greeting each with a "good day" after more than a week of only sombre "hellos".<br /> <br /> President Raul Castro, who on Sunday personally interred his older brother's ashes in a tomb fashioned from a granite boulder, has declared that Cuba will soon pass a law barring other memorials to Fidel, in keeping with his wishes to avoid a cult of personality developing after his death.<br /> <br /> There has been no indication of how Raul's rule might be affected by his brother's death. He has been breaking slowly but steadily from Fidel's legacy during his 10 years in power, implementing a series of free-market reforms and restarting diplomatic relations with the US Fidel publicly inveighed against the United States and capitalism in his final months, but it wasn't clear if his objections had any concrete effect on Raul's decision-making.<br /> <br /> In neighbourhoods across Havana, street vendors hawked their goods again after more than a week of silence. A piercing tune on a pan flute alerted people that the knife-sharpener was passing by. A man selling bricks of sweet pastry for US$2 shouted, "Cappuccino cake, 50 pesos!"<br /> <br /> Ordinary music was the slowest to return. On a two-hour walk across three Havana neighbourhoods in the afternoon, an Associated Press reporter heard music only four times, all at low volume &mdash; twice from idling cars and twice from open apartment windows.<br /> <br /> Music student Maikel Ramirez Ortega normally plays his trumpet on the Malecon seafront for three to four hours every afternoon. After stopping during the mourning period, he returned Monday afternoon and blew a few tentative notes under a footbridge, out of the public eye. It didn't feel quite right, even though it was now allowed, he said.<br /> <br /> "It still feels like we're in mourning," he said.<br /> <br /> The mood was still sombre across the island. In the eastern city of Santiago, where Castro's ashes were interred on Sunday, hotel bartender Mailen Fuentes said things didn't feel normal yet.<br /> <br /> "It's going to take time to get used to the idea that Fidel is no longer here," she said. "We feel sad. It's too soon."<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13483784/Cuba-Mourning-Over_Thom_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 7:54 AM US congresswoman fearful of Trump administration deporting young immigrants http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/US-congresswoman-fearful-of-Trump-administration-deporting-young-immigrants NEW YORK, United States (CMC) &mdash; Caribbean American Congresswoman Yvette D Clarke has expressed deep concern about plans by the incoming Donald Trump administration to deport hundreds of thousands of young immigrants who have been allowed work permits under the Obama administration.<br /> <br /> Clarke, the daughter of Jamaican immigrants, who represents the 9th Congressional District in Brooklyn, said that she and 105 of her congressional colleagues have written President Obama, urging him to prevent the misuse of information involving participants in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programme.<br /> <br /> Since the programme was established in 2012, more than 740,000 young men and women have obtained Social Security numbers and work permits, and have been allowed to remain in the United States without the threat of deportation.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;DACA has allowed hundreds of thousands of young people who know this nation as their only home to remain here and pursue the American Dream, by completing their education, starting businesses, and gaining employment,&rdquo; Clarke told the Caribbean Media Corporation (CMC).<br /> <br /> &ldquo;I am deeply concerned that the incoming presidential administration has verbally expressed contempt for this very vulnerable segment of our population and will attempt to misuse the information provided by DACA participants by literally following through on threats of deportations,&rdquo; she added.<br /> <br /> Clarke said these young women and men have &ldquo;increasingly become a significant part of the fabric of our community and are a vital part of our civil society, whose aspirations we should support.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;With their information and that of their families readily accessible to the incoming administration through the data that was collected in the administering of the DACA programme, it is imperative that all that can be done should be done to protect these young people from this looming threat,&rdquo; she said.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;We call on President Obama to exercise his authority to protect the 740,000 people enrolled in DACA and prevent the exploitation of personal information that was submitted to the Department of Homeland Security,&rdquo; Clarke told CMC.<br /> <br /> With a crackdown on undocumented immigrants highly likely after President-elect Trump takes office in January, students from more than 80 universities across the United States last month staged class walkouts and engaged in campus sit-ins.<br /> <br /> According to ThinkProgress, a publication of the Washington-based non-profit, Center for American Progress (CAP), the protesters were demanding that more universities and colleges become sanctuaries for undocumented students, and refuse access to US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials.<br /> <br /> The campuses where these protests took place ranged from New York&rsquo;s Vassar College and Iowa State University to University of Texas San Antonio.<br /> <br /> Trump has promised to eliminate the Obama-era DACA, which allows undocumented immigrants who entered the country before age 16 to get a renewable two-year work permit and an exemption from deportation, ThinkProgress said.<br /> <br /> It warned that Trump could either dissolve existing permits when he dismantles the executive order, or let them expire on their own.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;It&rsquo;s unclear which option Trump will take,&rdquo; ThinkProgress said. &ldquo;There is no policy that protects the safety of undocumented students.&rdquo;<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13483778/yvette-clarke_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 7:44 AM National Cruise Council chairman hails arrival of six cruise ships today http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Six-cruise-vessels-arrive-today ST JAMES, Jamaica (JIS) &mdash; The ports of Falmouth, Montego Bay, Ocho Rios and Kingston will host a combined six cruise vessels today, giving the island&rsquo;s cruise-shipping industry another significant boost.<br /> <br /> This will be the second time in the past four years that so many ships will be simultaneously calling on Jamaica. In 2012, a record seven ships made calls on Falmouth, Montego Bay, Ocho Rios and Port Antonio.<br /> <br /> In Ocho Rios, the &lsquo;Norwegian Epic&rsquo; and Princess Cruises&rsquo; &lsquo;Coral Princess&rsquo; will be making calls, while Montego Bay will see &lsquo;Thomson Dream&rsquo; and &lsquo;Aida Amar&rsquo;. Falmouth will be hosting the second appearance of the world&rsquo;s largest cruise ship, &lsquo;Harmony of the Seas&rsquo;, while Kingston will be welcoming the &lsquo;Monarch&rsquo;. This will be the biggest cruise ship to ever call on the capital city and the first time in three years that it will play host to one.<br /> <br /> Welcoming the news, Chairman of the National Cruise Council, Michael Belnavis, said there is absolutely no doubt that Jamaica&rsquo;s cruise shipping is now on par with any other destination in the region.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Six ships in one day is a major feat by any stretch of the imagination. The fact that they will be spread out across the board, including Kingston, is very significant in terms of the trickle-down benefits to the people in those areas,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> The chairman said no praise is too high for the Port Authority of Jamaica (PAJ), as the agency has been doing great work on behalf of the country.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;Under the leadership of Professor Gordon Shirley, the PAJ has been doing a wonderful job. In tandem with the Ministry of Tourism, the agency has been busy ensuring that infrastructural and beautification projects are being carried out in the resort towns, so as to enhance the tourism offerings,&rdquo; he said.<br /> <br /> Belnavis further noted that Jamaica currently plays host to the biggest cruise ships on the planet, pointing to the three Royal Caribbean Oasis-class luxury vessels &mdash; &lsquo;Harmony of the Seas&rsquo;, &lsquo;Allure of the Seas&rsquo; and &lsquo;Oasis of the Seas&rsquo; &mdash; as proof of the island&rsquo;s growing status as a premier cruise destination.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;We also had Carnival, the world&rsquo;s biggest cruise company, committing the newest and biggest ship in its fleet &mdash; &lsquo;the Carnival Vista&rsquo; &mdash; to Ocho Rios starting last week,&rdquo; Belnavis said.<br /> <br /> &ldquo;If we can get the resort town of Port Antonio in the mix, then we will have all our major cruise ports receiving ships. This would be a major plus for our craft traders, our ground-transportation operators, our restaurant and shop owners, and also everyone that depends on the cruise sector for a living,&rdquo; he added.<br /> <br /> http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13483775/Cruiseship_w300.jpg Local News Tuesday, December 06, 2016 7:27 AM Sex, lice and pubic shaving: study highlights risks http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/Sex--lice-and-pubic-shaving--study-highlights-risks PARIS, France (AFP) &mdash; People who shave, wax, or trim their pubic hair are at higher risk of sexually-transmitted infections (STIs), but less likely to get lice, a study suggested on Tuesday.<br /> <br /> A survey of more than 7,500 Americans aged 18 to 65, found that pubic groomers had an 80 per cent higher STI risk than people who leave their nether regions hairy.<br /> <br /> For certain infections, including herpes and chlamydia, the risk was highest among those who groomed most frequently and "intensely", the researchers found.<br /> <br /> The study merely observed a correlation between grooming and STIs, and cannot conclude that one causes the other.<br /> <br /> But the authors speculated that shaving or waxing may cause "microtears" in the skin, creating easy access for viruses. <br /> <br /> Sharing tools such as razors may also be a risk, they said, citing a case of HIV transmission between brothers using the same blade.<br /> <br /> "As a third possible explanation for our findings, individuals who groom may be more likely to engage in risky sexual behaviours than those who do not groom," said the study published in the journal Sexually Transmitted Infections.<br /> <br /> Pubic hair grooming, it explained, "is correlated with an increased number of lifetime sexual partners and is viewed as a preparatory act to sexual engagement".<br /> <br /> For the research, 7,580 people completed a questionnaire on their intimate hair-control, sex lives and STI history.<br /> <br /> Seventy-four per cent of respondents were pubic hair groomers &mdash; 66 per cent of men and 84 per cent of women.<br /> <br /> The trial participants were divided into "extreme groomers" who removed all pubic hair more than 11 times a year, high-frequency groomers who trimmed daily or weekly, low-frequency groomers, and non-groomers.<br /> <br /> The main methods used were razors, scissors and wax. Men mostly used an electric razor and women a manual one.<br /> <br /> One in five of both genders used scissors.<br /> <br /> Groomers, the study found, were younger overall and reported a larger number of annual and total lifetime sexual partners &mdash; even more so for extreme groomers.<br /> <br /> They also had more frequent weekly and daily sex than people who prefer to go "au naturel" down there.<br /> <br /> A greater proportion of groomers, 14 per cent, reported having had an STI during their lifetime, than non-groomers at eight per cent, the study found. <br /> <br /> For extreme groomers, the percentage was 18 per cent.<br /> <br /> STIs included herpes, syphilis, human papillomavirus (HPV), chlamydia, HIV, gonorrhoea and a skin virus called Molluscum contagiosum, or MCV.<br /> <br /> Such infections can have serious long-term consequences such as infertility, certain cancers and higher rates of HIV transmission.<br /> <br /> On the other end of the spectrum, the team found, low-intensity groomers had a higher risk of pubic lice infestation. <br /> <br /> This suggested "grooming might make it harder for lice to breed successfully," the team said in a statement.<br /> <br /> Better understanding the relationship between pubic hair grooming and STIs may help single out "high-risk individuals" for safe-sex education, the team said.<br /> <br /> They may also be advised to dehair less frequently or severely, or to delay sex after grooming to allow time for the skin to heal.<br /> <br /> Pubic hair grooming has become a common phenomenon worldwide, with popular media changing people's definition of attractiveness, cleanliness and "genital normalcy", said the study. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13482847/razor-aw_w300.jpg Local News Monday, December 05, 2016 7:57 PM New York requests US$35m to protect Trump http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/latestnews/New-York-requests-US-35m-to-protect-Trump NEW YORK, United States (AFP) &mdash; The city of New York asked the US government Monday for up to US$35 million to cover the cost of protecting Donald Trump as he builds his incoming cabinet at his Manhattan penthouse.<br /> <br /> Mayor Bill de Blasio said he made the request in a letter to President Barack Obama covering the period from November 8, the date of Trump's shock election victory, to January 20, the date of his inauguration in Washington.<br /> <br /> New York police officers are deployed around the clock outside Trump Tower at 57th Street and Fifth Avenue, one of the busiest intersections in the city and particularly crowded in December with tourists and Christmas shoppers.<br /> <br /> New York police chief James O'Neill said the force was expending "a tremendous number of resources" in the area to keep traffic moving through Midtown Manhattan, and has a truck restriction in place at 59th Street.<br /> <br /> The tycoon turned Republican president-elect has lived and worked for years at Trump Tower, his 58-story skyscraper on one of New York's most famed avenues, surrounded by luxury boutiques such as Gucci, Tiffany's and Bergdorf Goodman.<br /> <br /> Dozens of aides, prominent personalities and prospective cabinet nominees have trooped in and out of Trump Tower to meet the president-elect, further clogging up the traffic. <br /> <br /> The building has also become an increasingly popular tourist draw for visitors hoping to catch a glimpse of the president-elect.<br /> <br /> De Blasio said he was sending the letter to Obama on Monday to formally initiate the reimbursement process and would follow up in calls and meetings with the outgoing Democratic administration and Congress.<br /> <br /> "We will be asking for up to $35 million in reimbursement for the period November 8 to January 20," he told a news conference. A figure of US$35 million would work out at around US$470,000 per day.<br /> <br /> De Blasio, a progressive Democrat, said he had also had a "good conversation" with Trump's nominee for treasury secretary, millionaire former Goldman Sachs banker Steven Mnuchin, on reimbursement.<br /> <br /> The mayor joked he would not object if Trump relocated to his golf course in neighboring New Jersey, but stressed it was up to the president-elect where he wanted to put together his administration.<br /> <br /> "It's a tough situation. It's an unprecedented situation. It's going to get &mdash; I think &mdash; better after January 20 because the holidays will be over and most of the time... (Trump) will be in Washington," he said. http://www.jamaicaobserver.com/assets/13482845/dt_w300.jpg Local News Monday, December 05, 2016 7:36 PM