Daily Brief - Tuesday 13th August, 2019

NEWS

CXC to be fully digital by 2020

An e-learning hub and on-demand testing are among innovations the Caribbean Examinations Council (CXC) has announced, as it moves ahead with the full digital transformation of regional secondary education next year. And the regional exam body continues to tout the benefits of its fledgling primary-school exit assessment in the Eastern Caribbean. Speaking in Montserrat at the official release of the results of this year’s exams, new CXC registrar Wayne Wesley said the change was expected to take effect in 2020, and would also involve transforming operations at the Barbados-based examining body. Read more here

Woman among two murders

A 51-year-old woman is dead af­ter she was shot and killed in her yard this af­ter­noon. Guardian Me­dia un­der­stands Sher­ry-Ann Wat­son had just en­tered her prop­er­ty in Phase 4 in Mal­abar when she was ap­proached by two men who shot and killed her. Read more here

 

POLITICS

Kamla: Give Marlene a chance

Love, care and fairness must be offered to fired minister of public administration Marlene Mc Donald at this trying time, Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar said on Monday in a statement, “Marlene McDonald is entitled to her day in court.” Persad-Bissessar described as “sad news” reports that Mc Donald is being charged with money laundering, conspiracy to defraud the government, and misbehaviour in public office. She said the justice system says everyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty. “Mob justice is an affront to the principles of democracy that our country is built on. Read more here

Ball in PM’s court for damage control

The rul­ing PNM gov­ern­ment seems to be lurch­ing from one cri­sis to an­oth­er. This was how po­lit­i­cal an­a­lyst Prof John La Guerre re­spond­ed to the re­cent fir­ing of Pub­lic Ad­min­is­tra­tion Min­is­ter Mar­lene Mc­Don­ald and Mon­day’s can­cel­la­tion of Garvin Si­mon­ette’s ap­point­ment as her re­place­ment. Mc­Don­ald, a deputy po­lit­i­cal leader of the PNM, and pow­er­house in both the Par­lia­ment and the po­lit­i­cal was charged with sev­en crim­i­nal of­fences yes­ter­day along with four oth­ers in­clud­ing her com­pan­ion. A re­lease from the Of­fice of the Prime Min­is­ter yes­ter­day an­nounced that Si­mon­ette was sup­posed to be sworn in at 2 pm yes­ter­day but was can­celled at the last minute in light of new in­for­ma­tion which has not dis­closed. With­in min­utes of the can­cel­la­tion, de­tails sur­faced on so­cial me­dia that Si­mon­ette was faced with a DUI charge in Bre­vard Coun­ty in Ok­la­homa in 2014. Read more here

 

REGIONAL

‘Bad Sign’ For JLP - Party Shouldn’t Sleep Well, Says Johnson, As One PNP Poll Shows 46% Think Ja Headed Down Wrong Road

Seven out of every 10 Jamaicans believe “these days” their personal financial situation has either got worse or remains the same, a poll commissioned by one of the contenders in the People’s National Party (PNP) presidential race has found. The poll, which was conducted by Bill Johnson for the One PNP team led by Dr Peter Phillips, found, too, that an identical 46 per cent of respondents believe both the country and the communities in which they reside are heading in the wrong direction, while an overwhelming majority list crime and violence as the most pressing issue the nation faces. Read more here

 

INTERNATIONAL

Hong Kong protests disrupt airport for second day

Flight check-in has been suspended at Hong Kong International Airport for a second consecutive day because of anti-government protests. The airport, which is one of the world's busiest, has been the site of protests for five consecutive days. Videos on social media show passengers struggling to get through demonstrators, who have been sitting inside blocking departures. The city's leader, Carrie Lam, earlier issued a fresh warning to protesters. Ms Lam said Hong Kong had "reached [a] dangerous situation" and that violence during protests would push it "down a path of no return". As crowds continued to gather on Tuesday in spite of her comments, Hong Kong airport officials announced that all check-ins were suspended from 16:30 local time (10:30 GMT). Read more here

Putin’s Private Army

There’s nothing secret about Russia’s presencein the Central African Republic. The streets are plastered with propaganda posters proclaiming “Russia: hand in hand with your army!” A local radio station churns out Russian ballads and language lessons. New recruits to the army are being trained in Russian, using Russian weapons. But the Russian campaign in this war-torn country is anything but straightforward, drawing on a mix of guns-for-hire and clever PR to increase Moscow’s influence, outmaneuver its rivals and re-assert itself as a major player in the region. Read more here

13th August 2019

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