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Bahamas Consul General in Atlanta Randy Rolle responds to FNM's comments
Submitted by Elcott Coleby   
Wednesday, 08 April 2015 06:57

The following statement is released on behalf of Bahamas Consul General in Atlanta Randy Rolle

7 April 2015

I have seen a press release issued by the FNM on my detention at Bimini on Friday last.

At no time did I ever call or speak to the Prime Minister during the time of the events.

The matter was resolved without recourse to any politician.

I was released without charge and there the matter ended.

Bahamas Press Club statement on Freedom of Information Act
Submitted by the Bahamas Press Club   
Tuesday, 07 April 2015 11:01

Following the Prime Minister’s recent comments to journalism students at the College of the Bahamas on the readiness of the government to deal with a new Freedom of Information Bill, the Bahamas Press Club thought it necessary to reiterate our position on the matter.

As before, we commend the government on its efforts, but we hope that the Prime Minister’s assertion that, “The minister of education has just told me he is ready to bring the Act”, means that the country will not wait another 12 months for its introduction and implementation.

The Press Club maintains that focusing on the introduction and implementation of a Freedom of Information Act should be a priority for the government, because, from widespread public sentiment, it would signal and confirm the government’s commitment to the public’s right to know and a deepening of our democracy.

We urge the government to move post haste with its efforts in this regard.

Commentary by Elcott Coleby: This week in The Bahamas (March 30 - April 3)
Submitted by Elcott Coleby   
Friday, 03 April 2015 15:25

PM Christie stresses youth and human capital development at the UN

Delivering the statement on behalf of CARICOM, Bahamas Prime Minister and CARICOM Chair the Rt. Hon. Perry G. Christie told delegates that as the region tackles youth unemployment, efforts must be made to integrate human capital and youth development into the region’s strategy to mitigate the effects of climate change and resulting natural disasters. The Prime Minister delivered this proposition during his address at the 2015 Integration Segment of the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations in New York City this past Monday.

“Efforts will be made to advance human capital development, through the enhancement of key skills, education reform and youth development. We will build capacity and create green jobs in our efforts to manage adaptation to climate change and mitigate its effects, and enhance our resilience to natural disasters.  And we will forge a culture of innovation, increase job creation, entrepreneurship and new business development in Information and Communication Technology (ICT).”

Turning his attention to his CARICOM portfolio of sports and culture, Christie proposed innovation or new thinking as a critical component in maximizing the growth potential and entrepreneurial opportunities for the region’s people. He suggested sports assets as an example.

“We expanded our range of potential growth poles to include, for example, our sporting assets, in a bid to encourage new thinking in seeking to generate employment and create avenues for entrepreneurship. The areas identified have significant potential for enhancing and re-energizing our tourism product in particular.

Statement from Ministry of Transport & Aviation with respect to BATCU president's comments
Submitted by BIS   
Friday, 03 April 2015 15:05

The Ministry of Transport & Aviation is very concerned about the comments attributed to the President of the Bahamas Air Traffic Controllers Union (BATCU), Ms. Lashan Gray, in this morning’s issue of The Tribune newspaper, in which the President suggests that the Union may be considering taking industrial action over the Easter holidays. The Ministry is shocked at the President’s implied threat to disrupt air traffic services unduly, and without cause, and thereby inconvenience the travelling public.  

In fact, just yesterday, (1st April, 2015), the President was informed in writing by the Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Transport & Aviation that the Public Treasury is preparing payments for the holidays worked, and that the said payments will be made by Tuesday, 7th April, 2015. There is therefore no basis, in fact or in law for any such disruptive action in respect of an essential service. The Ministry advises that such action would not only be gratuitous, but would be a gross interference with the enjoyment of Bahamians and others over the Easter holidays.

Further, the Ministry has been informed by aviation stakeholders that the pronouncements by the President of the Bahamas Air Traffic Controllers Union have created alarm in both the domestic and international aviation sectors.  The possibility has now arisen, based on information the Ministry is receiving, that these airlines will make business decisions that may divert Tourism traffic away from the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. The economic implications for the Bahamian people are obvious. The Ministry calls upon the President of the Union to act responsibly in the interest of the country.

Bahamas National Festival Commission committed to promote all things Bahamian
Submitted by BIS   
Thursday, 02 April 2015 08:51
The Bahamas National Festival Commission, BNFC, remains committed to its mandate to create events that will stimulate sustainable cultural industries, and promote all things Bahamian.  

Statement on the Music Masters Concert and Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival
By: Paul Major, BNFC  

Over the past year, the BNFC has invested over half a million dollars directly in Bahamian musicians, for performance fees at promotional events and activities to support the Junkanoo Carnival Song Competition and the Music Masters Concert. Over the next few weeks and beyond the season of Carnival, the BNFC will continue to invest in local artists and the music community.

While there has been much interest in the guest performers at Music Masters, the Commission is clear that the primary objective of the event is to promote the Top 10 finalists in the Junkanoo Carnival Song Competition and to give these Bahamian artists, many of whom are undiscovered, local and international exposure.

Given the highly anticipated return of Baha Men, to the stage after many years, there is no doubt they will draw many fans out, and in so doing increase exposure for the Top 10 finalists competing on May 8th. Machel Montano, who recently performed in the Bahamas over the summer to a sold out concert, will appeal to carnival enthusiasts, and create additional exposure for the Top 10 artists in the region and beyond. In Freeport, Grand Bahama, the upcoming performance by T- Connection and Jay Mitchell will also draw a favorable response.
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