Foul play led to the death of 42 year old Allan John of Anse La Raye.
Assistant Police Commissioner Responsible for Crime and Intelligence, Frances Henry says an autopsy reveals John died as a result of a hemorrhagic shock secondary to a gun shot wound to the head.
What was initially believed to be a suspicious death is now being treated as homicide investigation.
Thus far no arrests have been made and the police have not identified any suspects. However ACP Henry says investigators are pursuing all possible leads in the case.
The lifeless body of the 42 year old was reportedly discovered by his wife in a pool of blood on Tuesday.
Relatives searching closure and justice are beseeching members of the public who may have information to assist the police.
Loved ones have also urged the alleged perpetrators to turn themselves over to the authorities.
Distraught relatives are equally disturbed by widespread rumors surrounding the death of a man they claim was a hard working contractor.
Marius John says contrary to some reports, his brother was a father of 4 and not five. ACP Henry has exhorted individuals who may have an interest in the matter or information relevant to the case to contact the police; specifically the major crime unit at Telephone number 4563754.
Health minister on Cuba Story byCarmy Joseph
Health Minister Alvina Reynolds says her Ministry is currently dialoguing with graduates and the Parents Association of Nursing Students in Cuba to ensure the return of Saint Lucians who studied nursing in Cuba.
This follows a meeting last week of that Association where loved ones demanded the government live up to its promise to return graduating students home.
Minister Reynolds did not address if the original 2006 agreement with students included this; however she spoke of a 2009 agreement that made allowances for students to pay for their return home and incidentals.
The students are part of a group of 189 Saint Lucians who in 2006 were selected for a 3 year Diploma Nursing program in Cuba.
They benefited from a bi-lateral agreement between Saint Lucia and Cuba and were chosen based on their inability to pursue university training in nursing.
Minister Reynolds says while the 2009 agreement absolves government of responsibility to return students home – the Ministry is nonetheless working to achieve this.
The Minister also addressed issues of accreditation. According to the Chairperson of the Parents Association of Nursing Students in Cuba – Saint Lucia was the only country participating in the Cuban nursing program whose graduates had to take a regional exam following their studies.
Minister Reynolds says the exam is a requirement of all nurses working in the region.
The Ministry was also accused of not dialoguing with parents or students in resolving the ongoing matter.
Acting Deputy PS Cointha Thomas says that is not the case.
Whether or not this matter became a priority after the Parents Association of Nursing Students in Cuba went public last week was not made clear.
PM responds to UWP Story byWinston Springer
Prime Minister and Minister for Finance Dr. Kenny Anthony has described the August 14, 2012 UWP press statement on the fiscal situation of Saint Lucia “astounding”and “unbelievable”.
The opposition has accused the administration of running up the deficit. However the Prime Minister counters his predecessor’s inaction is responsible for the government’s debt burden and the poor state of the economy.
Dr. Anthony has also accused the opposition leader of misleading the public on critical financial and economic matters.
The Prime Minister alleges the country was left reeling from the effects of the highest expenditure for any government in an election year.
Further – the current need to borrow for recurrent expenditure is the legacy of the previous United Workers Party administration.
The government in a press release on Friday also sent a strong warning to the opposition in the ongoing back and forth over the deficit.
According to the Dr. Kenny Anthony administration since the UWP is bent on absolving itself of its mismanagement of Saint Lucia’s economy, then its abuses and indiscretions will, in time, have to be placed before the public for its scrutiny and judgment.
Defending Olympic delegation Story byLovely St.Aime Joseph
The opposition UWP continues to take issue with government’s handling of tax payer dollars.
In a press statement issued this week the party asserts, “The truth is the current deepening economic crisis has been brought on by the signature Kenny Anthony approach of spending more than his Government is able to generate.”
This policy according to the UWP explains “the luxury of an inflated contingent to attend the London Olympics.”
Opposition MP Guy Joseph took on the issue at the last sitting of the House of Assembly.
However Prime Minister Dr Kenny Anthony has defended his decision to travel to London and says the presence of the Sports Minister and the Governor General cannot be viewed as lavish spending.
Dr Anthony says he merely stayed for part of the games and says the opposition cannot in breath clamour for more attention to Sports and then criticize the Prime Minister for showing his support.
The Prime Minister was also irked the presence of the Governor General at the Olympics, was questioned.
The opposition continues to call on the to government lead by example; subjecting itself to prudent management of the country’s financial resources.
The opposition says the government should further desist from playing the blame game and curtail its spending which the UWP believes has within the 8 months led the country to financial ruin.
Geothermal exploration Story byWinston Springer
According to External Affairs Minister Alva Baptiste, Saint Lucia and South Korea have enjoyed diplomatic relations since the island attained its independence in 1979.
Despite its evolving foreign policy posture, Baptiste says the country will continue to consolidate its friendships with traditional allies.
He also reveals that during a recent visit to the Korean peninsula, a major energy producer expressed keen interest in the island’s renewable energy sector.
The minister is particularly intrigued with the prospects of developing the island’s latent geothermal resources.
Despite the many decades of unsuccessful trials to harness this energy source, Baptiste remains optimistic about a breakthrough.
He says given the volatility of the crude oil market the government is acutely aware of the importance of energy sustainability and weaning the country off fossil fuels.
The Foreign Affairs Minister also held bi-lateral talks with his South Korean counterpart on many areas of mutual interests.
He says the deliberations yielded positive results
According to Bloomberg Business, Korea East West Company generates electricity using what is called bituminous coal, anthracite, heavy oil, liquefied natural gas, outflow water, sea water, sunlight, fuel cells and wind power.
Employers federation on wages Story byLovely St.Aime Joseph
Many, in particular, the opposition United Workers Party believe the public sector is headed for a show down with government.
Already the Ministry of Finance has indicated any major increase to public servants would be detrimental to the coffers of the government.
Much of the same was said by the previous UWP administration during the last triennium; however the UWP went on to grant a 14.5% increase to public servants during an economic slump.
With public sector unions seemingly having the upper hand in their wage negotiations, it begs the question what goes on with negotiations within the private sector.
Executive Director of the Saint Lucia Employers’ Federation, Joseph Alexander, says private sector employees have not received an overall wage increase in years.
Alexander says typically the private sector is expected to offer greater incentives than the public sector.
Those assertions he says have not held true over the past few years.
Alexander has also added his voice to those who say based on the economic climate at the time, and in comparison to what the private sector was offering, the 14.5% increase granted to the public service in 2008 was “out of whack”.
Joseph says generally the relationship between unions and employers is such that unions trust when the economy and business by extension is better, employers will come to the negotiating table with better offers.
For now he believes unions and workers continue to empathize with private sector companies.
National lottery on slot machines Story byWinston Springer
The new board of the National Lotteries Authority met recently with Cage Caribbean, the private company which operates the ubiquitous Video Lottery Terminals at many local bars.
The introduction of the devices was a controversial issue during the run up to the 2011 election campaign.
Religious conservatives, concerned citizens and the then opposition SLP voiced concerns about the social, moral and ethical implications of the electronic devices particularly for young children.
The new Chairman of the NLA says Cage Caribbean assures the authority measures are in place to prevent minors from using the devices.
The NLA says policy guidelines and safeguards are in place to regulate the use of the terminals.
These measures include the deployment of supervisors at establishments to ensure the machines are properly utilized.
The new board at its first press conference this week announced it is now eyeing business establishments that conduct sweepstakes similar to games of chance but openly flout the guidelines.
Chairman Michael St. Catherine says the decision to assert the board’s authority was necessitated by the non-co-operation of some members of the private sector.
Proceeds from the all NLA sanctioned games of chance which include the many lottery managed by Caribbean Bank Note and machines run by Cage are playing a vital role in meeting the financial obligations to youth and sports.
The earnings are also allocated for sports facilities and a scholarship program.
However the authority plans to raise its public profile in a bid to clearly outline the parameters of its mandate to regulate the sector.
Monroe cheque presentation Story byWinston Springer
Monroe College is donating 30 scholarships valued at 300 thousand dollars to the government of Saint Lucia.
They will be presented to students pursuing a range of programs offered by the college. The tertiary level institution says donation is the school’s way of following through on its philosophy of providing “access and opportunity to higher education”
Monroe College says applicants must have a strong academic background in order to be eligible for the financial assistance.
School administrators presented the whopping 300 thousand dollar cheque to Dr. Robert Lewis, Minister for Education
The educator by profession says the contribution will help will fulfill the government’s goal of expanding higher education opportunities for citizens.
In its first year of operation in Saint Lucia, Monroe College provided 10 scholarships, now in its fifth year; this number has increased to 30.
The high education institution says the value of all the scholarships provided to date is close to 1 million dollars.
La Rose festival Story bySant Justin
The La Rose festival will be celebrated on August 30th. One community is given the opportunity each year to host national activities as part of the observance which is coordinated by the Cultural Development Foundation.
Marketing Officer - Jimmy Clavier says the Dennery Community will this year have that responsibility.
Clavier says other communities will also host activities in observance of La Rose.
These include a séance in the community of Monchy on August 10th. Another will be held in the South of the island.
On Sunday August 26th, the Monchy Catholic Church will celebrate its patron and that of the La Rose Festival, St. Rose Delima.
A number of Northern groups are expected to attend that service. A Coronation of a new group will also be held on that same day in the community of Laborie at the Laborie Market Square.
A plea has gone out from the Cultural Development Foundation for the public to support the various activities.
Fashion event Story bySant Justin
A Trinidadian Designer is currently in St. Lucia focused on releasing his new line of clothing to the public.
Anthony Redd of Anthony Redd Fashion House says he is ready to present his new urban line called Island Urban to Saint Lucians.
Redd says while other designers tend to focus on the traditional Urban trend, his new line is a mixture of international and Caribbean flavor.
The launch of the new clothing line will take place in grand style at the Ozone apparel store in the JQ Charles Mall, Rodney Bay. Redd describes his female line as a cut above the rest.
The line which includes mini skirts, open back tops and dresses will be showcased on the catwalk by models from the Silhouette Model Agency.
Redd also plans to unveil a new line in men’s apparel which he hopes to make available in St. Lucia.
Future aspirations also include a clothing store in St. Vincent and the Grenadines which will offer suits and fitness wear.
The St. Lucia launch of the Anthony Redd line will take place this coming Saturday August 18th from 4PM.
Police on Anse-La-Raye
Health minister on Cuba
PM responds to UWP
Defending Olympic delegation
Employers federation on wages
National lottery on slot machines
Monroe cheque presentation
La Rose festival
The Employers Federation says private sector workers have not been granted a real increase in years. This is a far cry from public servants who have received wage increases as part of periodic wage negotiations with government.
That includes the more than 14% increase since called excessive by former Prime Minister Stephenson King who granted it. Similar opinion was expressed by a financial analyst in the Ministry of Finance who while presenting three possible wage increases to unions strongly advised against an increase he says the government cannot afford at this time.
Given the current economic climate and the fiscal position of government – should public servants be granted a salary increase for this triennium?