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Former Education Minister in Jamaica Arrested Amid Police Corruption Probe

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Former Education Minister Ruel Reid

KINGSTON,
Jamaica, Wednesday October 9, 2019
– Former
Education Minister Ruel Reid is in police custody as law enforcement
authorities continue investigations into allegations of corruption, fraud and misappropriation
of funds at the ministry and the Caribbean Maritime University (CMU).

Police confirmed that several people
were arrested and taken into custody for further questioning when simultaneous searches
were conducted at four locations in St Andrew, St Catherine and St Ann early
this morning. Several items, including documents and electronic devices, were also
seized.

While no names were released, multiple
media reports said warrants were executed at Reid’s home, as well as the
residence of CMU president, Professor Fritz Pinnock, and the former minister and
two family members, along with the university president were subsequently
detained.

The Financial Investigation Division, Major Organised Crime and Anti-Corruption Agency and the Constabulary Financial Unit of the Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime Division conducted the operations, which began at 5 a.m., to target the main suspects implicated in a multi-million dollar corruption and fraudulent schemes perpetrated at the Ministry of Education, CMU and other government entities falling under Reid’s portfolio.

Chief Technical Director of the Financial Investigation Division, Robin Sykes said on radio today that charges are expected to be laid later in the day.

He said investigators believed they had established a strong case.

“An operation of this nature relies on where the evidence is taking you, the strength of the evidence as well as serious issues of logistics, serious issues of resources mobilization,” he said on Nationwide News Network this morning.

“This is not something that we pulled out of the hat one day or two days ago.  This is something that we have been planning and we have been monitoring the activities of targets and this is the day we have decided to proceed.”

Reid resigned in March this year amid
allegations of corruption in his ministry, and also gave up his position as
Senator.

Prime Minister Andrew Holness had said
at the time that Reid’s resignation would ensure that any investigation into
matters of concern would not be in any way impeded by his presence or oversight
of the ministry.

There had been allegations regarding
misuse of public funds and corruption at the Ministry of Education, similar to
what had been uncovered in the scandal at state-owned oil refinery Petrojam.

The alleged issues specifically involved the CMU and how funds sent to the ministry by the HEART Trust for the Career Advancement Programme as well as the Technical, Vocational, Educational and Training (T-VET) Rationalization Project were being utilized.

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Guyana Launches Mass Drug Administration Campaign to Intensify Efforts to End Mosquito-borne Parasitic Disease

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Over the next month, health workers will provide pills to prevent Lymphatic Filariasis in a variety of locations in all endemic areas.

GEORGETOWN, Guyana, Friday November
8, 2019 –
At-risk
populations throughout Guyana will be treated for the lymphatic filariasis (LF)
over the next month in a bid to eliminate the mosquito-borne, parasitic disease
as a public health problem.

Under the Mass
Drug Administration (MDA) campaign launched by the Ministry of Public Health, in
collaboration with the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO), health workers
and volunteers visiting homes, workplaces and schools in eight of the country’s
10 regions to administer the pills.

“Eliminating
lymphatic filariasis is a national, regional and global priority,” said the
Minister of Public Health Volda Lawrence, adding that it will require
commitment from not just the government and partner organizations, but from the
general public as a whole in order to rid populations of this “public health
scourge”.

LF is a
debilitating disease that affects the lymphatic system. While it is not fatal,
it can cause severe swelling in the lower extremities (elephantiasis, or ‘big
foot’ as it is commonly known in the Caribbean) and genitals (hydrocele) that,
once it has manifested, cannot be reversed. Around 60,000 people in Guyana are
already affected by LF, and approximately 500,000 live in endemic areas, at
risk of contracting the disease.

“This MDA
represents the final stage in an initiative that will see a huge reduction in
the cost to society of LF – the cost of drugs, the cost of the stigma. This,
for me, is priceless,” said Dr William Adu-Krow, PAHO/WHO Representative in
Guyana.

A new,
triple drug therapy will be implemented during the MDA. This includes the use
of Ivermectin, along with Diethylcarbamazine and Albendazole- a combination
which has been proven to significantly reduce the burden of filarial infection
while also treating scabies, lice and intestinal worms. 

The
initiative, which is also being supported by the United States Center for
Disease Control with funding from USAID and the End Fund, consists of three
phases: A remapping survey, which ended in July 2019 to show which regions are
endemic; the mass drug administration to provide preventative treatment for
people living in endemic regions; and treatment of those already infected with
LF in order to manage symptoms and reduce morbidity.

The decision
to implement this therapy was taken by Guyana in order to scale-up activities
to eliminate filaria transmission and receive WHO validation by 2025. The
country is also increasing efforts to provide care for those already affected
by the disease.

On October 1, countries of the Americas agreed to a collective approach to the elimination of communicable diseases throughout Latin America and the Caribbean. The Elimination Initiative identifies a wide range of diseases and related conditions, including lymphatic filariasis, as potential candidates for elimination in the Region, and enables countries to consolidate efforts and resources towards ending these diseases and ensuring public health.

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Haïti – Actualité : Zapping…

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Haïti – Actualité : Zapping…
12/11/2019 11:14:17

Haïti - Actualité : Zapping...

Fusillade à Martissant, des victimes dans une école ?

Dimanche des affrontements armés ont eu lieu entre les gangs rivaux de « Grande Ravine » et de « Ti Bwa » (Martissant) non loin du Lycée Jacques Roumain. Durant la fusillade il y aurait eu plusieurs morts et blessés dans les rangs des deux gangs mais aussi des victimes collatérales dans le lycée Jacques Roumain, où des témoins rapportent plusieurs morts et blessés. Toutefois, pour le moment la Police Nationale d’Haïti ne confirme pas ni ne dément ces faits…

Assassinat de l’agronome Frantz Nelson :

L’agronome Frantz Nelson, ancien cadre du Ministère de l’Agriculture, a été assassiné samedi 9 novembre par des individus armés non-identifiés alors qu’il était sur le point de s’approvisionner en médicaments. Sa famille a découvert son corps à l’hôpital La Paix, à Delmas 33, où il avait été transporté.

Grosse panique à Liancourt :

Lundi, grosse panique dans la commune de Liancourt (commune de Saint-Marc, Artibonite) où des établissements scolaires ont relâché très tôt les élèves. Selon les informations recueillies, des individus armés auraient attaqués certaines écoles…

Propos de Rudy Hériveaux :

« Les errements continus de certains, en total déphasage avec la réalité, loin de nous dégoûter de la politique doivent nous stimuler pour leur rappeler comment accéder au pouvoir. Haïti est en train définitivement de tourner le dos aux pratiques délétères des coups d’État […] À chaque rupture de l’ordre démocratique, Haïti est amputée de ses rêves de progrès, de ses espoirs de renouveau. C’est une chute vertigineuse dans le gouffre insondable de la violence et de la corruption… Nous devons tout mettre en œuvre pour arrêter définitivement ce désastre, » a déclaré Rudy Hériveaux, Porte-parole du PHTK.

Le transport public victime de la crise :

Mardi, Changeux Méhu le Président de l’Association des Propriétaires et Chauffeurs d’Haïti, a lancé un appel aux acteurs de la crise pour qu’il fasse preuve de dépassement et trouve une solution à la crise, rappelant que le secteur du transport public est la principale victime de la paralysie des activités.

Jacmel : Vaste opération de nettoyage :

Après plusieurs semaines de blocage, la Mairie de jacmel a débuté une vaste opération de ramassage de fatras qui entravent la circulation et nuisent à la santé des riverains. La Mairie de Jacmel et la Direction départementale des travaux Publics s’activent à nettoyer les rues de Jacmel et les abords du Marché de Beaudouin où de tas d’immondices jonchent les allées. L’objectif étant d’ouvrir la voie à la reprise des activités dans la ville.

HL/ HaïtiLibre

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YWAM Haiti asks for prayers, support during crisis | Pennsylvania

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AKRON, Pa. — As a political and humanitarian crisis worsens in Haiti, a nonprofit organization with strong ties to Lancaster County is asking the public for prayers, financial support and sponsorship of care packages.

YWAM (Youth With A Mission) Haiti, formed in 1991, has 21 staff members who live in Haiti full time to meet evangelistic, training and outreach needs.

Tens of thousands of Haitians have taken to the streets since mid-September to demand the resignation of President Jovenel Moïse.

The country is experiencing strife in many ways.

• At least 42 people have died and 86 people have been injured since protests began. (UN High Commissioner for Human Rights)

• Some 3.67 million Haitians are facing either a crisis or emergency when it comes to getting food. (Miami Herald, citing a Haitian government report)

• Fuel shortages, roadblocks and unrest have prompted the closing of hospitals and schools.

“If the lockdown continues, we are about two weeks away from seeing at-risk families starve,” Wayne Snow, director of YWAM St. Marc Haiti, said in a news release.

YWAM Haiti board members have held emergency meetings to monitor the crisis from the United States.

Staff members with the St. Marc, Haiti, campus have facilitated meetings of area pastors to coordinate the religious community’s response, which includes a new food pantry in St. Marc, Haiti’s fourth-largest city and home to 250,000 people.

“To me, seeing the growth and change over the years in the St. Marc region has been incredible through building Homes of Hope and taking on other initiatives. The reports of what is happening now in Haiti are heartbreaking,” board member Marvin Martin said in the release.

YWAM Haiti officials have asked for prayers for peace in Haiti and the opportunity to demonstrate God’s love during the turmoil.

The organization also has asked for financial support as the inflation rate reaches nearly 23% and access to fuel is extremely limited.

YWAM Haiti is offering an opportunity to sponsor care packages to be distributed on or around the Thanksgiving holiday.

Each care package contains rice, beans and cooking oil, and can feed a family of five for three days.

The organization also is distributing Bibles in the Creole language.

To sponsor a $25 care package, go to www.ywamstmarchaiti.org or the YWAM Saint Marc Haiti Facebook page (facebook.com/ywam.haiti).

Check also may be sent to Youth With A Mission Haiti, P.O. Box 236, Akron, PA 17501.

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