Daily Brief - Monday 13th February, 2017

NEWS

7 Million for Dead Cops

At least one of the relatives of five police officers who died in line of duty has qualified for the million-dollar payout promised by the last administration and the current government. Sources revealed that the qualifying officer is PC Sherman Maynard who was slain outside Port-of-Spain Prison. His mother Octavia Maynard, is expected to receive the money on his behalf. Minster of National Security Edmund Dillon confirmed yesterday that five police officers and two prison officers were selected as those who qualified for the $1million payout. He said of the five police officers killed, relatives of one were able to present all the necessary documents, which have been processed and he expects the payment to the estate of the slain officer to be paid in two to three weeks’ time. Read more here

Ticket shortage at pan semis

Pan lovers were at the mercy of scalpers at the Queen's Park Savannah yesterday after there was a temporary shortage of tickets at the venue. In addition to tickets not being available, the semi-final judging of the Panorama steel band competitions which was scheduled to start at 9 am, kicked off 35 minutes late, because a police officer refused to allow the judges to enter the event. Chairman of the National Carnival Commission Kenny De Silva said yesterday that there were no tickets available at the savannah's booths before the show started due to "a bit of misunderstanding among all parties." This led to a group of scalpers selling tickets at black market prices. Read more here

Young pannists delight at Panorama semis

A packed North Stand revelled in the return of a purist steelpan diet at the national Panorama semifinal yesterday at the Queen’s Park Savannah, Port of Spain. Energetic live percussion punctuated the shrill of rubber on steel as all eyes remained focused on the savannah stage.  And with the exception of the customary playing of each band’s song of choice during their set-up, there was no DJ music to be heard. The North Stand never had a chance to sit as a steady stream of 30 small bands all boasting very youthful front lines attacked every selection with great fervour. Read more here

 

POLITICS

Kazim wants 894 local cops

Advertisements will be placed within a week to recruit 894 new municipal police officers, said a recent statement from Minister of Rural Development and Local Government Kazim Hosein. Each of Trinidad’s corporations is to get 100 officers, to improve citizen safety and curb crime across the country. “This is evidence of true Local Government Reform,” Hosein said. “We have a sense of urgency to increase our Municipal Police Service as it will fill the gaps in policing and concentrate on community safety and security.” He welcomed the Public Service Commission’s nod for this recruitment. Read more here

PM praises Calypso Queen on award

Praising the legendary Calypso Rose for always delivering high quality music, Prime Minister Dr Keith Rowley yesterday offered heartfelt congratulations to the Calypso Queen for winning the French 'Grammy' award. In a statement sent on behalf of the citizens of T&T, Rowley congratulated Rose on her historic achievement of winning the "Album de Musique de Monde", World Music Album of the Year Award at the Victoires de la Musique Award ceremony held last Friday in France. "Calypso Rose's winning album Far From Home was released last year and continues to enjoy phenomenal success both in Trinidad and Tobago and abroad," Rowley said. Read more here

D-Day For Fatca

The Opposition People's Partnership is today, again, under the spotlight as Government returns to Parliament with legislation needed to make Trinidad and Tobago compliant with the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), which will go once more to a vote. While Attorney General Faris Al-Rawi said yesterday that Government has done all it can to meet the Opposition's demands and the outcome of the next vote is to be seen, Opposition MP Dr Bhoe Tewarie has said that side's approach today will be a positive one. Read more here

 

BUSINESS

Scotia marks 40 years of cultural involvement

Since 1977, Scotiabank Trinidad and Tobago Limited has contributed to the promotion of TT’s national instrument, through its annual contributions to independent steelbands. Over the past 40 years, several bands throughout Trinidad and Tobago have received assistance, helping them to continue in their thrust of fostering community spirit through the steelpan. Recently, Scotiabank .Foundation disbursed funds to Brimblers, Golden Hands Steel Orchestra, La Creole Pan Groove, Melodians Steel Orchestra, Merry Tones Steel Orchestra, Platinum Steel Orchestra, Potential Symphony Steel Orchestra, Star Sapphire Steel Orchestra, St. James Tripolians Steel Orchestra, Trinidad Nostalgic and West Stars Steel Orchestra. Read more here

Massy expands car sales in Colombia

As part of its continued regional diversification strategy, the Massy Group has acquired two large automobile dealerships in Colombia, a market it first entered in 2014. On February 1, Massy Motors finalised its acquisition of Autogalias in Bogota and the Grupo Automontana in Medellin, which incorporates four dealerships. Through this acquisition, Massy Motors will now represent brands such as Renault, VW, Volvo and Hyundai, along with Mazda, Kia and Foton in Cali, Colombia. According to Executive Vice President, Massy Group, David O'Brien, the acquisition will significantly expand Massy Motors' presence in the Colombian automobile market. He said: "In 2017, Massy is likely to sell more cars in Colombia than we do in Trinidad." Read more here

 

REGIONAL

Break The Silence - Another Woman Killed, Minister Calls For Public Cooperation

The headless, decomposed body of another Jamaican woman was found in St Mary on the weekend, triggering a call by gender rights advocate Nadeen Spence for all Jamaicans to join forces and send a strong signal of outrage over the spate of deadly attacks against women. The body, believed to be the remains of 46-year-old Erroline Chin, was found in bushes on Saturday in the quiet community of Heywood Hall, police investigators revealed yesterday. The head was reportedly found a short distance away. "Based on the state of decomposition, we can't positively identify her. We will have to use DNA and await the outcome of a post-mortem (exam) to positively say it's her. But we believe it's her, and we are investigating around that," one investigator told The Gleaner. Councillor Mitzie Hudson, who represents the Hampstead division, which includes the community of Heywood Hall, said that the killing has left residents in shock. "Something like this has never happened in the community, so people are somewhat in awe," Hudson said. Read more here

Panama Papers law firm partners arrested

Jurgen Mossack and Ramón Fonseca, the founding partners of the law firm at the epicenter of the Panama Papers documents leak scandal, have been arrested by Panamanian authorities on suspicion of money laundering. Panama attorney Edison Teano, another partner at the firm of Mossack and Fonseca, was also detained for questioning by the authorities. Teano is said to have been involved in the use of Panamanian corporations to hide bribes received by members of a Brazilian political party. He is also being investigated for money laundering, according to published reports in Panama. A judge has ordered pre-trial detention for all, to prevent their flight out of the country to avoid prosecution. The role played by a number of lesser known attorneys at the Mossack Fonseca firm has thus far escaped media attention. Many of the firm’s lawyers are seeking to avoid scrutiny by quietly moving to Panama City law firms, apparently hoping to escape being charged with money laundering. Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

China, Russia condemn North Korea's missile launch

China has voiced opposition to North Korea's test of a reported new ballistic missile more than 24 hours after reports of the launch emerged. But the country shrugged off suggestions it should be doing more to intervene in the rogue state's military affairs, pinning the test down to Pyongyang's testy relations with Washington and Seoul. North Korean state media hailed the Sunday test as a success, claiming a previously unpublicized part of the country's arsenal -- a Pukguksong-2, an intermediate-range missile -- was launched under the supervision of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Read more here

Oroville Dam risk: Thousands ordered to evacuate homes

More than 180,000 people in northern California have been told to evacuate their homes after both overflow channels at the tallest dam in the US were found to be damaged. The emergency spillway of the 770ft (230m) tall Oroville Dam was close to collapse, officials said. The excess water has now stopped flowing. However, late on Sunday, Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea said the evacuation orders remained in place. Water levels in the reservoir have risen following heavy rain and snow after years of severe drought. It is the first time that Lake Oroville, which lies 65 miles (105km) north of Sacramento, has experienced such an emergency in the dam's near 50-year history. Read more here

13th February 2017

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