Daily Brief - Wednesday 27th June, 2018


UWI Dean: Migrants being refused HIV care

There must be a commitment to human rights framework and that commitment must transcend borders says Prof Rose-Marie Belle Antoine, Dean of Law, University of the West Indies. Antoine, while speaking at the regional forum on Migrants and Mobile Populations Rights and Health held yesterday at the Parliament building in Port of Spain, said all people must be able to access a minimum amount of health care. Read more here

EFCL staves off bailiffs seeking $.7m

State-owned Educational Facilities Company Ltd (EFCL) has narrowly escaped a move by a restaurant supply company to seize its equipment to clear a $700,000 debt. Lawyers and a bailiff representing Advance Commercial Equipment Ltd, of El Socorro, San Juan, yesterday went to EFCL’s office at Long Circular Road, Maraval, to seize equipment and vehicles which could be sold at auction in order to recoup the debt. However, they left after the company’s management paid the money, which included their fees for yesterday’s proposed action. Read more here

Burnt body found near home of missing teen

The burnt remains of a man were found in bushes off Rivulet Road, Couva, metres away from the home of missing teenager Anil Matagoolam on Tuesday. But relatives of the 19-year-old man were unable to positively identify the skeletal remains. The burnt out remains were discovered near the old Brechin Castle sugar factory, off Rivulet Road, at around 3pm. Matagoolam's relatives visited the scene but were unable to confirm the identity. Police said blood samples would be taken from the teen's parents to determine the identity. Read more here



Petrotrin worthy of private-sector investment

There are parts of Petrotrin that people in the private sector will be willing to invest in, Energy Chamber president Dr Thackwray Driver believes. The key will be for the board to structure it in a way to allow for private equity interests, he added. “We have seen private capital in Petrotrin through lease out/farm out operations and that has been successful, and it should be expanded,” Driver told Newsday in a telephone interview. Read more here

Sinanan tells Mark: Bring facts, not squirrel talk!

“Bring facts, not squirrel talk!” This was the advice Works and Transport Minister Rohan Sinanan gave Opposition Senator Wade Mark, who moved a motion yesterday on the procurement of the Galleons Passage in the Senate. Delivering his contribution, Sinanan first shot down claims by the Opposition that it was illegal for Nidco to procure the US$17.4 million vessel, saying there are provisions in the Central Tenders Board Act to do so and Nidco has been acquiring vessels since 2013. Read more here

Ferrytales in the Senate

Ferry tales! Finance Minister Colm Imbert yesterday accused Opposition Senator Wade Mark of being the bearer of “fake news” and “fiction’ on the Galleons Passage. “All of these stories, I just don’t know where Senator Mark gets his wild imagination from,” Imbert said as he waded into Wade’s contribution amidst the turbulence over the Galleons Passage that was played out in the Parliament yesterday. Read more here



Volume leader Sagicor down by $0.09

Overall market activity resulted from trading in 13 securities of which three advanced, three declined and seven traded firm. Trading activity on the First Tier Market registered a volume of 86,150 shares crossing the floor of the Exchange valued at $1,426,745.64. Sagicor Financial Corporation Ltd was the volume leader with 32,155 shares changing hands for a value of $252,618.63, followed by Guardian Holdings Ltd with a volume of 25,000 shares being traded for $424,750. T&T NGL Ltd contributed 10,901 shares with a value of $321,810.95, while GraceKennedy Ltd added 5,000 shares valued at $15,000. Read more here

Mortgage crisis may be looming T&T house prices falling amidst struggling economy

Trinidad and Tobago house prices are falling amid tough economic times, a World Bank global property data supplier has said. The claim is supported by latest available data from the Central Statistical Office (CSO). The World Bank data supplier, Global Property Guide, did not get its data from the CSO, however, but instead from surveys of local real estate vendors over the last year. Read more here



Petrojam Raid - MOCA, Integrity Commission Seize Documents, Computers

Teams from the Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency (MOCA) and the new Integrity Commission yesterday swooped down on the state-owned oil refinery, Petrojam, confiscating documents and computers amid allegations of nepotism, corruption and cost overruns at the entity. MOCA stepped into Petrojam following calls from the parliamentary Opposition for the investigative body to probe corruption at the oil refinery. The Private Sector Organisation of Jamaica and other private-sector groups also called for a forensic audit at Petrojam and the Universal Service Fund. At a hastily called press conference in the Opposition's offices at Gordon House yesterday, Leader of the Opposition Dr Peter Phillips expressed surprise that following a 12-hour Cabinet meeting on Monday, which discussed "the loss or fraudulent diversion of hundreds of millions of dollars of public funds at Petrojam, the Government failed to make a statement to Parliament on the issue". Read more here



The biggest night so far for progressives and other takeaways from Tuesday night's primaries

If a progressive war against the Democratic establishment is coming, Tuesday's primaries were the first shots fired. The soul searching within the Democratic Party that, to date, had played out largely on the sidelines was thrust into the spotlight on Tuesday in a series of primaries that amounted to arguably the best night for progressives this year. Their biggest win: Democratic socialist Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez defeating Rep. Joe Crowley, a 10-term incumbent, in New York's 14th Congressional District primary, a stunner that rocked the Democratic world and shook up the party's line of succession. Read more here

Heterosexual couple win civil partnership case

A heterosexual couple have won their legal bid for the right to have a civil partnership instead of a marriage. The Supreme Court unanimously ruled in favour of Rebecca Steinfeld, 37, and Charles Keidan, 41, from London. The court said the Civil Partnership Act 2004 - which only applies to same-sex couples - is incompatible with the European Convention on Human Rights. Ms Steinfeld said she hoped the government does the "right thing" and extends civil partnerships to all. "We are feeling elated," she told the BBC outside court. "But at the same time we are feeling frustrated the government has wasted taxpayers' money in fighting what the judges' have called a blatant inequality." The judgement does not oblige government to change the law, although it does make it more likely that the government will now act, the BBC's legal correspondent Clive Coleman explained. Read more here

27th June 2018


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