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NDC statement on passing of Chasley David

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It is with a profound sense of sadness that the members of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) have learned of the recent passing of Chasley David, patriarch of the David family. Many members were honoured to have known and interacted with him over the years.

Some remember him as a beautiful and gentle soul. Others remembered his kindness and generosity. But most members are in unanimous agreement that Mr David stood out for his vivacious and highly energetic spirit, exceptional knowledge in various fields, and his immense contribution to the business arena and development in Grenada.

He often boasted about what a beautiful family he had, so we know that his children had meant a lot much to him. Without a doubt, the passing of Brother Chasley David will be seen by the members of his family and the many people who knew him throughout the state as a significant loss.

On behalf of the executive committee and members of the NDC, we extend our heartfelt condolences to his sons, relatives, and friends. Please accept our most sincere sympathies. We are praying for strength and comfort for you all. May our collective prayers bring solace to your souls. And may the soul of the departed rest in perfect peace!

With deepest sympathies,
Joseph Andall, Interim Political Leader, NDC

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Caribbean & World

Claudette Joseph receives pre-action protocol letter from PM Mitchell

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by Linda Straker

  • Seven days from 13 December 2019 to respond to pre-action protocol letter
  • Letter demands cease and desist from repeating the claim; apologise and pay compensation of EC$350,000

Claudette Joseph, the Public Relations Officer of the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) has seven days from 13 December 2019 to respond to a pre-action protocol letter from Prime Minister, Dr Keith Mitchell. If she fails to comply with the demands, a defamatory lawsuit will be filed against her in the civil court.

The letter to Joseph said that on 2 December in a live news conference from the headquarters of the NDC, she uttered words that can have negative effects on the Prime Minister who is the Minister for Finance and is also the person under whose ministry the Citizenship by Investment (CBI) programme falls.

“You made certain statements on behalf of the NDC about our client which we believe are defamatory in nature, and geared to impugn on his good name, his standing and reputation,” said the letter from the law firm of Nigel Stewarts and Associates. “These statements are therefore completely false and malicious in all respect and were intentionally made by you to cause damage to our client’s reputation.” The letter demands that Joseph, who is a lawyer by profession, cease and desist from repeating the claim; apologise and pay compensation of EC$350,000.

In the news conference whose speakers were former Political Leader and Prime Minister, Tillman Thomas, and Joseph — who was elected to the PRO role in early November 2019 — they expressed concern about the recent Al Jazeera production called “Diplomat passports for Sale.”  The documentary is claiming that several Caribbean islands with citizenship by investment programmes are selling diplomat passports.

The segment on Grenada focused on the failed Grenada Sustainable Aquaculture project which was to be located in St Mark. While speaking on the matter, Joseph said that the Prime Minister was also an investor in the project and directed members of media to watch a Youtube video where he is disclosing the information.

“Our client denies uttering those words but merely to say that he has invested in the parish,” the letter informed Joseph.

The Prime Minister is known to own a historic house in St Mark which is undergoing significant refurbishing and upgrading.

As for the project, in October 2018, government placed a notice on its CBI website announcing the suspension of applications in respect of the project until further notice. In March 2019, the Prime Minister announced that an investigation was been conducted. An update is yet to be provided.

The letters ended by informing Joseph that failure to comply with the demands of the letter will give the firm no choice to proceed with legal action.

Calls to Joseph for a comment on the development proved futile as her telephone went unanswered.

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Request for Pension Certificate | NOW Grenada

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All government pensioners and ex-gratia recipients and advance payment recipients are reminded that the deadline for submission of Pension Life Certificates for the period 1 January to 30 June 2020 is 31 December 2019.

Pensioners who have not yet submitted their Life Certificates are asked to do so immediately so that their pension payments can be processed.

Kindly ensure that the correct information is included on the Life Certificate and that it is signed and stamped by an Official Certifier: a Justice of the Peace, Medical Practitioner, Minister of Religion, Barrister-at-Law or Permanent Secretary.

Additionally, pensioners who are able to present themselves in person to the Ministry of Finance can have their certificates, certified, by the Permanent Secretary or Deputy Permanent Secretaries, with proper national identification, such as passport, driver’s licence or voter’s registration card.

Pensioners residing in a foreign country are to be attested by a Notary Public, Head of Overseas Mission or Consulate Office of Grenada.

Ministry of Finance

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Grenada not in violation of Vienna Convention on trade and diplomacy

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by Linda Straker

  • Honorary Consuls or Trade Consuls do not have same level of immunity as ambassadors
  • Honorary Consuls conduct diplomacy free of cost to Government of Grenada
  • Grenada is not violating any section of the Vienna Convention on Trade and Diplomacy

Foreign Affairs Minister, Peter David, has explained that Grenada as a small developing state is not engaging in any international misconduct when it appoints citizens to be honorary consuls or trade consuls to represent the island in places where there are no embassies.

Explaining that it’s difficult for the country to operate embassies throughout the world, David in an interview on Friday, said that there are two kinds of diplomat, and those who are appointed as Honorary Consul or Trade Consul do not have the same level of immunity as ambassadors.

“We will appoint someone as Honorary Consul where it does not cost anything to the Government of Grenada and what they do is conduct diplomacy free of cost to us, but in order to conduct that diplomacy they must have a diplomatic passport and some diplomatic position, but that does not guarantee immunity,” David said, pointing out that the Honorary Consul does not get immunity.

“So the issuance of diplomatic passports to honorary consuls, to trade consuls, to all of these persons has nothing to do with the Citizenship By Investment programme (CBI) and it has nothing to do with the government’s sale of anything. It is a matter of them conducting our diplomacy in a way that allows us access to as many countries in the world as possible.” The minister pointed out that a person who gained citizenship through the CBI can be considered for a diplomatic post. “That appointment is not on the base of the CBI programme but on the fact that the person is a citizen of this country and is willing to represent us,” he said, explaining that all persons who become a citizen through the various means available, can represent the country following the necessary due diligence.

A person can gain citizenship through the naturalisation process of up to second and third generations in accordance with the Immigration Act, or purchase it through the CBI programme. The CBI programme provides for an approved applicant to invest in real estate in a country or make the required contribution to the National Transformation Fund.

“So, we have representatives in these countries who are Grenadian citizens regardless of how they acquired the citizenship, but there is no link between CBI and diplomacy,” he said. Minister David is of the belief after research, that the country is not violating any section of the Vienna Convention on Trade and Diplomacy. “We do not believe that we are violating any Vienna convention. Our research does not suggest that the Vienna convention is violated.”

The Vienna Convention on Trade says that consular officers and consular employees have “functional immunity” but do not enjoy the broader “personal immunity” accorded to diplomats as provided for in the Vienna Convention on Diplomacy.

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