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Antigua

Antigua and Barbuda Police Commissioner, Wendel Robinson was suspended over an alleged sex scandal involving three of his junior officers.

The order came from the Police Service Commission (PSC) following complaints from three junior cops about sexual harassment.

Robinson is now under investigation regarding the allegations of several of his junior colleagues who complained to the PSC last month about being sexually harassed and had rejected his advances.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Atlee Rodney has been appointed to act as commissioner of police. He will head the investigation.

Police Welfare Association chairwoman, Inspector Claudia Morgan, had complained to the PSC about the top cop’s conduct.

It is reported that Attorney General Steadroy “Cutie” Benjamin had written to Robinson, requesting that he respond to the allegations made by the officers that he asked at least one of the officers for sex and offered to pay.

Others also alleged that he made inappropriate comments about their anatomy, in addition to telling them they needed to accept his request or they will not get a promotion in the Police Force.

Bahamas

The Bahamas government plans to crack down on unlicensed commercial flights throughout The Bahamas.

Minister of Tourism and Aviation, Dionisio D’Aguilar in making the announcement said that the government will implement a license control system.

He said regulations would be put in place for the fixed-based operators, the terminals through which they pass, General Aviation, to check their paperwork before they go onto the ramp and when they come off the ramp.

The minister said in this way “we can verify they have a license that allows them to transport passengers commercially and to ensure that their aircraft has been properly inspected and licensed.”

D’Aguilar said a threshold will be placed on pilots making a limited number of flights or carrying a limited number of people every month, in order to maintain their private license status.

He said the new regulation will begin in New Providence and work its way to the Family Islands.

In February this year, Director General of the Bahamas Civil Aviation Authority (BCCA) Captain Charles Beneby said the authority began reviewing relevant legislation and regulations to bring about stricter oversight of the sector to prevent hacking.

He also said the authority will introduce closed-circuit television cameras (CCTV) in strategic locations at the Lynden Pindling International Airport to assist authorities in this effort.

Barbados

Oil exploration is expected to begin in Barbados within the next year.

This was stated by Energy Minister Senator Darcy Boyce, who said Barbados has successfully negotiated exploration licenses for two blocks offshore with BHP Billiton and had awarded another block to Repsol.

He said that BHP Billiton is now in the final stages of the Energy Information Administration (EIA) process and once completed, exploration is expected to begin in 2019.

The minister noted that Barbados had a substantial offshore petroleum acreage comprising more than 70,000 square kilometers.

He said it was the intention of the Energy Division to continue to market the island’s offshore acreage internationally, with the hope of generating more investment and exploration opportunities.

Jamaica

The Jamaica government is moving to implement some of the recommendations in a report by the Mental Health and Homeless Task Force.

Minister of Health, Dr. Christopher Tufton said the recommendations would be implemented during the fiscal year.

Tufton received the report in 2016 which examined the current status of mental illness in the society, existing methods and techniques of treatment and proposes new approaches to tackling the ailment.

One of the most significant elements of the document to be implemented this fiscal year is a public education campaign geared at the destination of persons afflicted by mental health.

Tufton said another recommendation of the report involves training of approximately 62 psychiatric nursing aides, in order to “beef up and support the mental health teams already on the streets and in the communities.”

St. Lucia

Prime Minister Allen Chastanet is predicting continued economic growth for St. Lucia this year after claiming that the island had recorded growth of 2.5 per cent in 2017.

He made the prediction while delivering the EC$1.4 billion budget recently in Parliament.

Chastanet said St. Lucia has seen renewed investor, business and consumer confidence in the local economy.

He told legislators that several foreign direct investment projects in the pipeline are at an advanced stage and are expected to come on stream in 2018.

The prime minister said that growth over the last year was driven largely by a strong recovery in the tourism sector and also reflected increased activity in construction,

Trinidad

Trinidad and Tobago Prime Minister, Dr. Keith Rowley has sent the Cambridge Analytica scandal to be debated in Parliament.

He said a Parliament Committee, which will also probe the matter will be summoning foreign and local witnesses to speak about the company’s work in Trinidad and Tobago.

Cambridge Analytica (CA) is currently under investigation in the UK for using massive amounts of data from 50 million Facebook users to formulate political advertising on the Donald Trump election campaign.

The company is accused of using for political purposes, personal information acquired from Facebook.

Christopher Wylie, a former CA employee, recently testified before the UK House of Commons committee that CA worked for the Trinidad and Tobago government in 2013.

He said he worked for a former National Security Minister and CA’s monitoring internet browsing in Trinidad and Tobago which Wylie admitted was illegal.

Wylie pinpointed Trinidad and Tobago as the site of a data and communication mining test project, alleging it formed the basis for CA’s subsequent activities in the US and UK.

Attorney General Faris–al-Rawi recently announced an audit of all state entities to probe any CA link and if any monies were paid to the company.

Opposition Leader Kamla Persad-Bissessar has denied allegations that her former PP government had hired CA for the 2015 general election to access citizen’s information, private, and personnel information.

— Compiled by Azad Ali

Updated 5:30 pm, April 19, 2018
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