We cut through the clutter to tell you some of the most important stories of the day.
Up For Jamaica
International ratings agency Standard and Poor’s (S&P), on Friday September 27, upgraded the Government of Jamaica’s long-term foreign and local currency rating to “B+” from “B”.
At the same time S&P affirmed the ‘B’ rating on the short-term foreign and local currency sovereign credit ratings. The outlook remains “stable”. S&P Global Ratings also raised its transfer and convertibility assessment to ‘BB-‘ from ‘B+’. The Ministry of Finance welcomed the ratings upgrade.
3 Million Trees
Prime Minister Andrew Holness has announced an initiative that will see three million trees being planted across the island. The National Tree Planting Initiative will be launched on Friday, October 4, at Jamaica House and is to be in operation for three years. The National Tree Planting Initiative is aimed at mitigating the effects of climate change and represents a tree being planted for every Jamaican. The Prime Minister made the announcement as part of Jamaica’s policy statement at the United Nations on Friday, September 27.
Gender Based Violence
Prime Minister Andrew Holness has affirmed the commitment of the Jamaican Government to push back against gender based violence. He told a United Nations meeting in New York that in this regard, the Government is to implement the ‘Spot Light Initiative’.
Mr Holness was speaking Thursday, September 26, at the EU-UN Spotlight Initiative High-Level Event: Progress and Perspectives on Eliminating Violence Against Women and Girls. The European Union (EU) has allocated 8 million Euros to Jamaica to support this initiative to deal with the problem of domestic violence.
Road Closed In Clarendon
Rainfall continues to impacts some major roadways across Jamaica. The main road from Lower Chapelton to Rock River in Clarendon has been closed with immediate effect.
According to the National Works Agency, NWA. The road is one of several in the parish that were impacted by heavy rains over the last five days. A section of the road broke away during the heavy rains, while a retaining wall also collapsed. The decision to close the road was made following another inspection late Friday afternoon, September 27. The NWA is advising that person inconvenienced by the closure of the main road from Lower Chapelton to Rock River, use the alternative route through Turners. In the meantime, Jobs Lane, St. Catherine in the vicinity of the Examination Depot remains closed, due to a failure of a culvert and that the main road from Bartons to Old Harbour also in St. Catherine is impassable at Big Pond, due to flooding.
Women In Engineering
Minister of Science, Energy and Technology, Fayval Williams, is encouraging more women to join the field of engineering. Minister Williams commended the engineering students at the Mona campus for coming together to establish the Mona Engineering Society at the University of West Indies (UWI) campus in St. Andrew. The launch took place on Thursday, September 26.
The call for more females to choose engineering was delivered by Director of Project Management and Administration in the Ministry, Horace Buckley, on behalf of the Minister who was travelling. “I believe our women have much to contribute to the growth of this country, and the field of engineering is no exception,” she said.
President of the Mona Engineering Society, Jachin Mullings, said the group was established to being students together from the various engineering fields.
The Area 2 Narcotics division says it has seized more than 500 pounds of ganja in Discovery Bay, St Ann Friday morning. The ganja was valued at $2 million.
PICA Getting Better
The Passport, Immigration and Citizenship Agency (PICA) is expanding its service delivery, adding new online services and improving customer care at its physical facilities including a mobile unit. PICA’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Andrew Wynter, said the agency is rolling out a range of initiatives to facilitate ease of doing business with its consumers.