By ZNS News, Sep 23 2016 7:19PM
Minister of Social Services and Community Development, the Hon. Melanie Sharon Griffin Thursday paid tribute to former National Council on Older Persons Chairman, Mrs. Juliette Barnwell, as a woman of substance, nation builder, patriot and champion of the rights of older persons throughout the Commonwealth of The Bahamas. A former educator, lecturer, union and Credit Union executive, school board president, protocol expert and Secretary to the Governor-General, amongst her many other life achievements, Mrs. Barnwell died on Sunday, September 11, 2016. Her remains will be laid to rest on Saturday, September 24, following services at Christ Church Cathedral.
Mrs. Barnwell assumed responsibility as Chairperson of the Council in November 2011, two years after the Council was established in 1999 to review and make recommendations to the Government on matters related to the care, protection and recognition of older persons within the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.
Her work resulted in the preparation of the document “Rationale for Proposed Legislation for Older Persons in the Commonwealth of The Bahamas” which was approved August 30, 2016, by Cabinet for Draft Legislation for the Care and Protection of Older Persons. The Draft Legislation will be prepared by officials in the Office of the Attorney General.
“As Chairman of the Council, Mrs. Barnwell was extremely concerned about the elderly and what appeared to be a lack of respect for them, their views and their continued participation in family and in society in a meaningful way,” Mrs. Griffin said. “She was also concerned about their welfare and their care and protection from neglect and physical and financial abuse. Today, as we launch activities for the (commemoration of) United Nations International Day on Older Persons and the commencement of Older Persons Month, 2016, in The Bahamas, we pay tribute to this historian, nation builder, patriot and champion for the rights of older persons throughout this country.”
The daughter of the late Dr. Claudius R. Walker and Mrs. Mabel C. Walker (both of whom have had schools named in their honour for their contributions to Bahamian education), Mrs. Barnwell made her own significant mark on the Bahamian landscape, having taught at schools such as Xavier’s College, Southern Senior School and Harold Road Secondary (now A.F. Adderley). She also served as a lecturer for the Bahamahost Programme and the Public Service Training Centre in protocol, communications and ethics.
In 1970, she was transferred to the Curriculum Division of the Ministry of Education, responsible for Language Arts, and later to the Management Division, responsible for Family Island Schools. Mrs. Barnwell also acted as Personnel Officer in the Ministry of Education and was later attached to the Supervisory Division. She was promoted to the post of Secretary to the Governor-General and held the post for 12 years.
Her contributions to the country went even further. Mrs. Barnwell served on the Executive Board of the Bahamas Union of Teachers; President of St. John’s Prep and St. John’s College, Parents Teachers Associations; President of the Bahamas Cooperative League; Director and President of the Public Worker’s Cooperative Credit Union and as President of the National Association of School Boards - which she organized in 2001. Mrs. Barnwell also served as Chairperson of the C.R. Walker Secondary School Board and has served as a member of the Labour Tribunal, as a Lay Magistrate and as a Justice of the Peace.
“Today, as I pay tribute to Mrs. Juliette Barnwell, I remember her as a woman of substance, a strict disciplinarian who believed in order and one who cared deeply about her God, her family and her country. She was committed to serving them all literally until her last breath,” Mrs. Griffin said. “During her tenure as Chairman of the National Council on Older Persons, she executed her responsibilities with a high degree of passion, commitment, knowledge, integrity and professionalism.
“As we get set to observe the International Day of Older Persons and commemorate October as Older Persons Month, we do so with a heavy heart because we are also mourning the passing of Mrs. Barnwell,” Mrs. Griffin added.
By ZNS News, Sep 23 2016 7:16PM
Governor General Her Excellency Dame Marguerite Pindling, centre, cuts the ribbon to officially open the Day Care Centre and Homework Study facility of the Straw Market, Downtown, during Thursday’s Straw Vendors and Wood Carvers Appreciation and Recognition Ceremony. Officials, including Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Works and Urban Development the Hon. Philip Davis (right) and Chairman of the Straw Market Authority Kevin Simmons, look on. (BIS Photo/Patrick Hanna)
By ZNS News, Sep 23 2016 7:15PM
The Bahamas Government is poised to launch new markets to facilitate the wares of straw vendors, straw practitioners and wood carvers, in Cat Island and Harbour Island. Kevin Simmons, Chairman of the Straw Market Authority, made the announcement during the annual Appreciation and Recognition Ceremony for straw vendors, straw practitioners and wood carvers, Thursday, September 22, 2016 at the Downtown Straw Market. Mr. Simmons also revealed plans to reconstruct the market in Exuma, for a review of the market at Paradise Island, and to open facilities in Red Bays, North Andros. “We are cognizant about the need to reconstruct the market in Exuma and to construct markets in Cat Island and Harbour Island. It is the Authority’s goal to commence constructing these markets within this budget year,” said Mr. Simmons.
“The Paradise Island market is under review by the Ministry of Works and a determination is pending. In Red Bays, North Andros, we will ensure that the facility will be functioning and officially open before the 2016 tourist season. I am advised that this market was built some time ago and never used for the intended purpose." .Additionally, the Chairman affirmed that the Straw Market Authority is pursuing amicable arrangements with the owners of Port Lucaya for vendors who have been impacted by recent actions.
“It is important for investors coming into our country to appreciate the unique, historical practices of doing business in the Straw Market,” he added. Plans are also in the making to open a National Insurance Sub-office in the Downtown Straw Market. Mr. Simmons said the sub-office is intended to assist vendors with addressing National Insurance needs that require time away from the market. On Thursday, the Governor-General Dame Marguerite Pindling, officially cut the ribbon to the Day Care Centre and Homework Study facility located upstairs in the Downtown Straw Market. The Centre provides day care and afterschool assistance for children and grandchildren of vendors.
By ZNS News, Sep 23 2016 7:11PM
The Government of The Bahamas will continue to strengthen the Financial Services sector. To this end, Minister of Financial Services, Hon. Hope C. Strachan reconfirmed the government’s commitment to the sector. During the 2016 Nassau Conference, presented by the Association of International Banks and Trust Companies in The Bahamas, held at Melia Nassau Beach Resort on Wednesday, September 21. The event was held under the theme, ‘Strengthening our Competitiveness.”
After thanking the organizers for the invitation to attend the conference, The Minister said that only the highest of standards would be accepted in the sector. “I would first like to make it absolutely clear that the Government of The Bahamas is fully committed to maintaining a Trustworthy, Competent and Compliant jurisdiction. We will not tolerate the use of The Bahamas financial services sector as a conduit for the conducting of illicit or illegal activities,” said Minister Strachan. Minister Strachan said that the government is ‘keenly aware’ of the challenges faced by International Financial Centers globally and the efforts to undermine the importance of small, successful financial centers like The Bahamas.
“Some of these challenges are blacklisting, and de-risking in correspondent banking despite the individual and collective adherence of countries in the region to comply with global regulatory initiatives in anti-money laundering, corruption, the countering of financial terrorism as well as the tackling of tax evasion.” She said that Global connectivity has increased the need for heightened security and effective controls to mitigate financial risks.
“While The Bahamas continues to demonstrate its cooperation and commitment, and while our current position and strengths are widely recognized, our country’s position as a respected and trusted international offshore financial centre is constantly being challenged and threatened. Now more than ever, we must not be discouraged, we must continue to display the resilience and strength that has brought us this far.”
By ZNS News, Sep 23 2016 7:08PM
Members of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre -- "Ailey II" of New York City -- along with the Bahamas Committee called upon Governor General Her Excellency Dame Marguerite Pindling at Government House on Thursday, September 22, 2016. (BIS Photo/Letisha Henderson)
By ZNS News, Sep 23 2016 6:59PM
Dr. Steve Altschuler, CEO of UHealth – the University of Miami Health System and Senior Vice-President of Health Affairs, University of Miami, paid a courtesy call on Prime Minister and Minister of Finance the Rt. Hon. Perry Christie at the Office of the Prime Minister, September 21, 2016. Pictured at the courtesy call, from left: Dr. Percival McNeil; Minister for Grand Bahama Dr. Michael Darville; Dr. Altschuler; Prime Minister Christie; Luis M. Del Pozo, Director/Physician Recruitment and Development, University of Miami; Minister of Health Dr. Perry Gomez; and Minister of National Security Dr. Bernard Nottage. (BIS Photo/Peter Ramsay)
By ZNS News, Sep 23 2016 6:46PM
Fort Charlotte Urban Renewal in partnership with the students of C. C. Sweeting Secondary School held a Cleanup Campaign of Johnson Park, Farrington Road, on Thursday morning, September 22, 2016. (BIS Photos/Derek Smith)
By ZNS News, Sep 22 2016 8:21PM
Bahamian DeAndre Ayton; the No. 1 High School player in the Class of 2017 and recently committed to Arizona will be coming to The Bahamas to showcase his talents when his school Hillcrest Prep (Phoenix) takes part in the Sand Between Your Toes Showcase as part of the Grind Session. The event is scheduled for Nov. 17-18 at the Kendal GL Isaacs National Gymnasium. Matchups have not been announced, but the field also includes Conrad Academy (Orlando), Victory Rock (Bradenton, Fla.), Prolific Prep (Napa, Calif.), Prolific Prep North (Sault Ste. Marie, Ontario) and another team to be announced.
By ZNS News, Sep 21 2016 8:24PM
Minister of Youth, Sports and Culture the Hon. Dr. Daniel Johnson congratulated the individual team performances of Team Bahamas -- 2016 Bahamas Olympic team of the Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Summer Olympics in August, at celebration ceremonies on Sunday, September 18, 2016 at Melia Nassau Beach Resort. Team members received certificates and plaques from the Bahamas Olympic Committee (BOC). Minister Johnson congratulated the team and said he looks forward to the Summer Olympics of 2020 in Tokyo, when he expects an even bigger contingent to highlight The Bahamas.
The Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, in conjunction with Buttons Formal Wear held a weekend of activities to honour the star athletes, including 400 Metre Gold Medal Winner Shaunae Miller, and 4x400 Metre Relay team Bronze Medal Winners Chris Brown, Alonzo Russell, Steven Gardiner, Michael Mathieu, and Stephen Newbold.
Present at the ceremonies, pictured, were: Shaunae Miller, 400m Gold Medalist; Michael Mathieu, Bronze Medalist 4x400m Relay; Alonzo Russell, Bronze Medalist 4x400m Relay; Chris Brown, Bronze Medalist 4x400m Relay; Steven Gardiner, Bronze Medalist 4x400m Relay; Stephen Newbold, Bronze Medalist 4x400m Relay; Demetrius Pinder, Member of the 4x400m Relay Team; Pedrya Seymour, 110 Hurdles; Sheniqua Ferguson, Women’s 200m; Anthonique Strachan, Women’s 200m; Lanece Clarke, Women’s 4x400m Relay; Christine Amertil; Women’s 4x400m Relay; Emily Morley, Rowing; Trevor Barry, Finalist High Jump; Teray Smith, 200m; Shavez Hart, 100m, 200m; Jamial Rolle, 100 metres; Jamal Wilson, High Jump; Leevan Sands, Triple Jump; Latario Collie-Minnis, Triple Jump; Bianca Stuart, Women’s Long Jump; Tynia Gaither, 100m, 200m; and Debbie Ferguson-Mckenzie, Assistant Coach.
Not pictured: Adanaca Brown, Women's 100m Hurdles; Devynne Charlton, Women's 100m Hurdles; Jeffrey Gibson, Men's 400m Hurdles; Donald Thomas, High Jump Finalist; Dustin Tynes, Swimming, 100 m Breaststroke; Joanna Evans, Swimming; 200m/400m/800m Free Style Arianna Vanderpool-Wallace, 50m/100m Free Style & 100m Fly; Carmeisha Cox, Women's 4x400m Relay; Shaquania Dorsett, Women’s 4x400m Relay; and Adrain Griffith, 100m. (BIS Photos/Raymond A. Bethel, Sr.)
By ZNS News, Sep 21 2016 8:08PM
In academics, research and skills development, the College of The Bahamas and its coming successor, the University of The Bahamas, will continue to leave a distinct footprint throughout The Bahamas, according to President Dr. Rodney D. Smith.
Dr. Smith recently shared his vision for academic and operational growth with members of the Rotary Club of East Nassau.
Envisioned more than 40 years ago, the University’s official Charter Day will be November 10th, 2016. However, outside of the formal events that are being planned to commemorate its establishment, critical capacity development work is underway to place the goal of higher education within the reach of Bahamians throughout the archipelago. The linchpin for success, in addition to the University’s campuses in New Providence, will be the creation of centres of excellence in the Family Islands.
“So rather than having all of our centres of excellence on one island we are going to be creating centres of excellence on several islands of the country,” President Smith shared.
“For example the Northern Bahamas Campus will be focusing on technology and engineering, manufacturing and entrepreneurial studies. Andros will focus on agriculture and marine sciences. In San Salvador we will focus on sustainability education. We are also looking to develop college campuses on Exuma and Eleuthera and we are working with the Island School in Eleuthera to expand those relationships as well.”
Currently, approximately 5,000 students are enrolled in the College of The Bahamas. An expanding platform of distance education under University of The Bahamas is anticipated to augment enrolment capacity nationally, regionally and internationally. Key to that plan is the University’s attainment of accreditation under the U.S.-based Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS). It is one of the six regional accreditation organizations recognized by the United States Department of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.
The University of The Bahamas Act passed by both the House of Assembly and the Senate in the summer of 2016 contains the core governance requirements necessary for SACS accreditation. The Act also reflects a more inclusive model of governance where stakeholders in academia and the public and private sector are broadly represented. With the establishment of an Academic Senate, the faculty will assume greater responsibility for the curriculum of the institution.
“[SACS] is the most stringent accreditation in the world so much so that institutions in China as well as South America are seeking the same SACS accreditation,” Dr. Smith explained.
“It is strategic that we are doing this because we intend to become an international University of The Bahamas and that means that once we complete the SACS accreditation we will be able to complete the paperwork for any accreditation agency anywhere in the world including in the UK and Canada and become an internationally accredited university,” he added.
Increasing capacity to house students and faculty from abroad also plays a critical role in achieving that objective. Currently, plans are underway to begin construction on a new multi-purpose residential facility at the Oakes Field Campus in New Providence. This venture is anticipated to emanate through a public-private partnership, with a groundbreaking ceremony expected to occur during Fall 2016.
During the Fall 2016 semester, construction will also be completed on a new residence facility at the Northern Bahamas Campus in Grand Bahama, funded by a $3 million donation from the Grand Bahama Port Authority, one of The College’s long-standing donors.Building and solidifying relationships with donors, friends and alumni remains a key priority for the institution, especially as it seeks to augment private funding in support of university goals and objectives.
“We will continue to receive some government subvention over the years as we move along but the long-term goal is the create a University of The Bahamas that has its own revenue source, its own endowment, significant endowment, and has its own fundraising mechanisms in place. We are creating the University of The Bahamas foundation not only locally but also in the United States for donations and 501(c)(3) clarifications as well,” President Smith noted.
According to Dr. Smith, overall the institution will be guided by the national vision for growth, so much so that in the coming year the new Strategic Plan for the University of The Bahamas will be guided by the National Development Plan that is being crafted for The Bahamas. The University intends to create a Government and Public Policy Institute which will be responsible for creating national economic feasibility studies as well as monitoring the implementation of the National Development Plan using key performance indicators.
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