Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : January 23rd 2018 Contents A14 news
Tuesday, January 23, 2018
SAN JUAN—The Caribbean Hotel and
Tourism Association (CHTA) says it is
encouraged by the “strong” demand
for registration at this month’s Car-
ibbean Travel Marketplace less than
six months after Hurricanes Irma and
Maria ploughed through the Lesser
Antilles dealing a severe blow to the re-
gion’s tourism sector.
The CHTA said following a meeting
here last week, the demand among travel
industry stakeholders to do business in
the region was encouraging, given the
continued interest and registration re-
sponse for the annual event.
CHTA director-general Frank Comito
said plans for Marketplace 2018, to be held
from January 30 to February 1, are now in
the advanced stages, and the association is
on track to eclipse the 1,000-delegate mark
before the start of the event.
“This speaks not only to the resilience of
the Caribbean’s bread and butter tourism
industry but also to the fortitude of the Car-
ibbean’s people,” said Comito.
He said Puerto Rico, which was among
Caribbean islands impacted by the two cat-
egory 5 hurricanes last September is on the
rebound and “more than ready to host this
year’s edition of Caribbean Travel Market-
The CHTA said an estimated 500 supplier
delegates from more than 200 companies
across 30 countries will join another 100-plus
media representatives at this year’s event.
It said more than 200 delegates from close
to 100 buyer companies, 19 of which are new
to the conference have so far registered for
the event and buyer companies are expected
from Argentina, the Bahamas, Brazil, Canada,
Germany, Ireland, Italy, Jamaica, Japan, Mexico,
Peru, Puerto Rico, Spain, the United Kingdom,
the United States and Uruguay.
KINGSTON—The Jamaica government is
seeking to assure international visitors
that the island is safe despite the impo-
sition last week of a state of emergency
in the western parish of St James aimed
at curbing the rise in criminal activities
Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett,
responding to a UK Foreign Office warn-
ing to its citizens travelling to the tourist
destination of Montego Bay, the capital of
St James, said that visitors to the island
should not feel threatened.
“These enhanced security measures are
not out of the ordinary in international
tourism markets and therefore would be
understood by visitors and welcomed by
residents,” he said.
The Foreign Office, in its warning to
British tourists, called on them to remain
within “gated guarded compounds ex-
cept on hotel operated excursions or
Bartlett told the UK’s Independent
Newspaper in order to bring the situa-
tion under control tourism stakehold-
ers here had given their full support
to the state of emergency, “and are
feeling that these actions are welcome to
ensure the safety of Jamaica’s guests and cit-
Meanwhile, the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist
Association ( JHTA) says the Andrew Holness
government needs to embark on a public edu-
cation campaign to assure tourists that Jamaica
is still open for business.
Canada has joined Britain in issuing adviso-
ries for their citizens in Jamaica regarding the
state of emergency that came into effect last
Over the weekend, the Jamaica Defence Force
( JDF) said that there were encouraging signs
that the state of emergency was bearing fruit.
Colonel Daniel Pryce told reporters that within
the first 24 hours of operations, one Kalash-
nikov rifle and six live rounds had been seized
and that the high-powered weapon may have
been used in a recent killing in the parish.
He said that eight members of the Sparta
gang, wanted for murder and other gun-re-
lated crimes, were arrested. He said 15 per-
sons were arrested in connection with the
illegal purchase and sale of petrol.
“Over 5000 litres of diesel and petrol,
which were being sold from five illegal,
makeshift, petrol distribution points, were
also seized in that operation,” he said, add-
ing that the JDF would continue with tar-
geted operations, vehicle checks, cordon
and searches, patrols and snap raids to
put pressure on the gangs and restore
peace to St James.
“Our operations are only as good as
the intelligence that drives them. We
urge persons to use the JDF tip hotline...
to call and tell us what you know about
criminal activities in your communi-
ties,” he said.
Under the State of Public Emer-
gency, all clubs and fast food outlets
must be closed by midnight; all ser-
vice stations by 10 pm; bars and tav-
erns are to be closed by 9 pm; cook
shops and haberdasheries by 7 pm
and hangouts and corner shops by
KINGSTOWN—A 22-year-old former model has
been sent back to a mental institution here
while a magistrate decides on the arguments
presented in court yesterday regarding the
court’s acceptance of a report from the psy-
Yugge Farrell, who has been at the Mental
Health Centre for the past two weeks, has
been charged with using abusive language
to the wife of Finance Minister Camillo Gon-
salves, on January 4.
When she appeared before Magistrate
Bertie Pompey, on January 5, Farrell, was
ordered to undergo two weeks of psychiat-
ric evaluation at the Mental Health Centre.
The prosecution had made the applica-
tion for psychiatric evaluation after Far-
rell pleaded not guilty to the charge.
Pompey’s decision to grant the pros-
ecution request in the absence of sup-
porting argument has led to widespread
debate about the functioning of the judi-
ciary in St Vincent and the Grenadines.
Since her hospitalisation, Farrell has
made a number of allegations, includ-
ing that she had been in a relationship
with the 44-year-old minister, a father
of one, that ended in 2016.
The finance minister has remained
mum about the allegation and Prime
Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves has said
that he has advised the minister, who
is also his son, to delay comment and
maintain a “dignified silence.” (CMC)
face of State
travel still high
Former model sent
back to mental hospital
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