Ricardo Blackman’s Caribbean Headlines News Feb. 12th

By Ricardo Blackman | CDN Barbados

Dateline Bridgetown, BARBADOS:

The Democratic Labour Party (DLP) intends to hold on to its heavily-touted but controversial programmes if the electorate returns them to office.  Schoolchildren will continue to ride free on Transport Board buses, constituency councils will survive and the national summer camp programme will be retained.  All three initiatives were introduced by the then David Thompson-led administration’s Financial Statement and Budgetary Proposals of July 7, 2008.  Based on government’s next Budget, which will be debated in the House of Assembly from today, the three will survive if the DLP wins the next general election.

Authorities at Preconco Limited (PCL) are upbeat about the company’s prospects this year after a strong performance in 2017.  Operations Manager of the local precast company, Joshua Read said the high point for the company last year was the near 15 per cent rise in employment that resulted from PCL’s involvement in several local and regional projects.

Dateline Port of Spain, TRINIDAD:

Massy Holdings Ltd has reported an after- tax profit that declined by less than one percent to $149.8 million from $151.2 million, in its first quarter ended December 31st, 2017.  “The impact of increased corporate tax rates in Trinidad and Tobago on earnings per share was tempered by the fact that there are no more charges for discontinued operations” said Massy Holdings Chairman, Robert Bermudez.

Dateline Kingston, JAMAICA:

Health Minister Dr. Christopher Tufton, says Jamaicans need to understand the difference between free health care and universal access to health care, as the government is committed to the latter.  Speaking at the launch of Partners Interventional Centre of Jamaica Limited, a privately owned and operated medical unit dedicated to the diagnosis and treatment of cardiovascular disease, Dr. Tufton said Jamaicans have, for a while, confused and equated free health care with universal access, when the two, though similar, are very different.

The countdown has begun.  The University of the West Indies (UWI), through the Department of Physics in the Faculty of Science and Technology, is about to blast off into outer space.  A satellite, built by researchers of the Department of Physics under the Programme to Enhance and Apply Our Knowledge of Space (PEAKS) is expected to serve the West Indian region with a two-pronged objective of motivating students to do the sciences, as well as to kick-start the Caribbean’s space industry.   

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