Daily Brief- Monday 4th January, 2020

NEWS

Principals concerned about 30,000 students being without online devices

National Primary Schools Principals' Association president Lance Mottley is not surprised by a statement from the Education Ministry that 30,000 students still do not have access to electronic devices to undertake virtual schooling as the new school term starts on Monday. Mottley told Newsday, "While this might be a significant improvement from the figures given mid last year, that over 60,000 students were without devices, we cannot be comforted that some 30,000 students' education could be adversely affected because of a lack of devices." Describing this as a serious matter, Mottley added, "I hope that this will be addressed in short order." Read more here

OJT at Couva South constituency office robbed at gunpoint

A female On-the-Job trainee at the Couva South Constituency Office was one of two women who were robbed at gunpoint while travelling in a private hire “PH” car on Saturday, Opposition Member of Parliament Rudy Indarsingh said yesterday. Indarsingh said he was told of the “deeply disturbing news” when he got a call from the traumatised employee as she was making a report to the Chaguanas Police Station. Read more here

 

POLITICS

MSJ: Put people first in 2021

Movement for Social Justice (MSJ) political leader David Abdulah declared that this year "people must come first." He said this during a virtual news conference on Sunday. After saying the importance of good health was underscored by the covid19 pandemic in 2020, Abdulah said TT and the rest of the world will have to continue grappling with covid19 for the duration of this year. He observed that even with potential covid19 vaccines being developed and distributed, the virus is still raging in different countries and the world now has to contend with a new mutant strain of covid19. Read more here

Rowley, Kamla launch campaigns today as 2021 election fever begins

Election action 2021 starts this morning. Today is Nomination Day for candidates in the upcoming Tobago House of Assembly (THA) polls and by-elections occurring in five municipal corporation seats in Trinidad. Both elections are on January 25. This will be the 11th THA election after the Assembly’s term ended last year. Read more here

 

BUSINESS

2020 year-in-review and 2021 outlook

Local stocks were negatively impacted by the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic as the domestic environment grappled with reduced business activity and uncertainties in the energy sector. Read more here

 

REGIONAL

Ja Agrees To MOU Terms With US On Tackling Gun, Drug Smuggling At Ports, Tapia Says

It took more than four years, but Jamaica has finally signed off on a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the United States (US) that seeks to stamp out corruption at the ports, which has, for decades, facilitated the inflows of guns, drugs and other illicit items. Outgoing US Ambassador to Jamaica Donald Tapia, who made the disclosure, also suggested that the Andrew Holness administration had concerns about the proposed arrangements in the MOU, or CMAA agreement, for the gathering and sharing of intercepted communication. Read more here

Mining, forestry sectors take centre stage

Investments in Guyana’s traditional sectors and the need for economic diversity remain paramount, even as this country moves forward with its new-found “oil wealth,” Minister of Natural Resources, Vickram Bharrat has said, as he outlined his ministry’s plan to increase investments in the local mining and forestry sectors. For decades, those sectors have been considered crucial components of economic development, contributing significantly to the country’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Even with the country’s nascent oil-and-gas sector, which has attracted unprecedented interest in the local economy, traditional areas of mining and forestry remain relevant and “very lucrative.” Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

Trump's bid to steal Georgia exposes GOP election ruse

Astonishing new evidence of a desperate President Donald Trump caught on tape trying to steal the election exposes the depth of his corruption and makes his Republican Capitol Hill allies complicit in his bid to thwart the will of voters. In a fresh abuse of power, Trump tried to bully a top Georgia GOP official into finding votes to overturn President-elect Joe Biden's win in the state. The staggering telephone call, audio of which was obtained by CNN and first reported by The Washington Post, amounted to the most serious threat yet posed by his authoritarian instincts to American democracy. Read more here

Julian Assange: Wikileaks founder extradition to US blocked by UK judge

Wikileaks founder Julian Assange cannot be extradited to the United States, a court in London has ruled. The judge blocked the request because of concerns over Mr Assange's mental health and risk of suicide in the US. The 49-year-old is wanted over the publication of thousands of classified documents in 2010 and 2011. The US claims the leaks broke the law and endangered lives. Mr Assange has fought the extradition and says the case is politically motivated. The US authorities have said the decision will be appealed. Read more here

 

4th January 2021

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