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UK says ‘no’ to Constitutional change, too risky; House Speaker urges preparation for Independence



Providenciales, 17 Aug 2015 – It was labeled a ‘slap in the face’ to the Turks and Caicos and its bi-partisan Constitutional Review process, which was wholly rejected by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Hon. Robert Hall, Speaker of the TCI House of Assembly: “The response received from the United Kingdom to the deliberations of this House embodied in the matter sent to the UK pertaining to the Constitutional Review Committee; I find it quite insulting and a slap in the face that in this day and time, a couple of gentlemen would sit in London and basically tell us what is good for us.”

Peeing on his foot, calling it rain… just one of the sharp phrases the Hon Robert Hall, Speaker of the House of Assembly expressed after reading the letter from HE Peter Beckingham, the letter from the UK Foreign Office and his reply to them, also by letter. This news came during today’s session via the Governor from UK Minister of State in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, Rt. Hon. Grant Chaps, who said ‘no’ to changing elements of the 2011 document given to the TCI as its Constitution and which is believed in many quarters to be regressive and archaic. The UK government, in this July 20, 2015 correspondence, says it in essence believes there have been too many gains with the current constitution to turn back now. Robert Hall is the Speaker of the House, and he hotly rejected the rejection.

From the FCO: “One of the key lessons was the need to put in place a series of robust checks and balances, to ensure that TCI meets international recognized standards of good governance, the rule of law and sound financial management. The present constitution and later legislation have been and continued to be important legislations to deliver positive change in TCI. The turn-around in TCIs economy over recent years has been remarkable; of course it was driven in part by increase in tourist numbers but it is also as a result of the hard work that was done in TCI to reframe its constitution and to put in place the measures highlighted above,” the letter goes on to say, “It is against this background that I have accessed the Committee’s report and have concluded that to amend the constitution in ways proposed, would risk the hard won progress that was made, I do not believe this is a risk we can afford to take.”

The response to this process which toured each of the islands, in some cases twice and which provided not only a formal document but video and audio evidence of what the people of the Turks and Caicos want, has now ignited a fresh call for the country to step out of the shadow of the British and shine on its own as an independent nation.

Hon. Robert Hall, Speaker of the TCI House of Assembly: “Turks and Caicos you better stand together otherwise, you gonna fall individually. Start planning now more than ever before to pull down that Union Jack and raise whatever you design Turks Island, you gatta move ahead.”

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#TurksandCaicos, October 5, 2022 – A significant jump in gas prices may be looming as the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) is expected to cut production in its meeting on October 5th. Gas prices rose more than $2 dollars on Tuesday in anticipation of the meeting.

Gas prices had soared to incredible highs in early 2022 following sanctions on Russia over its invasion of Ukraine and western countries subsequently shunning the oil and gas provided by the Eurasian nation.

This year oil remained steadily above $110 a barrel for the most part from February to July even rising to $130 a barrel briefly in March and everyone felt the pinch eventually.

Gas Prices in the Turks and Caicos rose more than $1.68 reaching highs of $8.10 and power bills in June caused widespread panic and outrage in residents, prompting calls for the government to investigate and birthing forgiveness programs for the swaths of families unable to pay the bills in full.

The TCI has still not quite recovered from the ultra high prices earlier this year based on the government’s monthly gas price index and $2.5 million was just allocated to put a cap on fuel prices for domestic customers.

Now according to analysts at Reuters, oil production may be cut up to 1 million barrels per day. Currently oil prices are trading well below 100 dollars but all eyes are on the OPEC meeting to be held in Vienna.

With demand staying strong across the globe as the Russia-Ukranian war drags on, quarantines and lockdowns become a thing of the past, and upcoming sanctions to Russian crude oil consumers must brace for what analysts say will likely be a jump, once again, in prices.

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Virginia Mourns Black Community Leader Murdered on Vacation in Turks & Caicos 



#TurksandCaicos, October 5, 2022  – Kent Carter was an army veteran and the first Vice President of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in Arlington Virginia.  An established realtor in his native US and described as a ‘stand up guy’, Kent was an active leader in his community— until last Sunday when criminals in an effort to take out rivals, uncaring of innocents, sprayed the vehicle he was traveling with bullets.

For months Turks and Caicos community leaders have been warning that gun violence is robbing us of our bright young men, now another nation has been robbed as well. It has been confirmed that Carter leaves behind a wife and at least one young daughter.

Kent’s death was confirmed by the NAACP Arlington Branch on Wednesday in a notification of loss.

“NAACP Arlington Branch mourns the tragic and unexpected loss of our 1st Vice President, Kent Carter, who passed away Sunday, October 2, 2022, while vacationing abroad.”

In the immediate hours after the announcement the story was picked up by multiple major American media houses including Fox News and tributes began to pour in. Virginia Senator Don Beyer described it as a ‘terrible loss’. Across the board from political organizations to county board members, to homeowners whom he had helped close on properties the environment was one of shock and disbelief.

Magnetic Media has observed the effect Carter, who described himself as a proud ‘girl dad’ had on the individuals around him. He participated in food drives, black upliftment sessions and was a regular vacationer to other places worldwide. Carter was not only a social activist he was a top realtor in his area and his personal social media is filled with smiling photos of families and individuals he helped to make homeowners, calls to action and social outreach programs.  The outpouring of grief was astounding.

His neighbor Robert York described him to Fox News.

“Just a really great, standup guy, you know? One of the best neighbors you could have,” he said “He and his family, just really great neighbors. So this is just incredibly sad news.”

After enjoying a jet ski ride on Sunday October 2nd he was headed back to his hotel when gunmen rained bullets on the vehicle he was traveling in with when the operators of the rides who were themselves the target of the attack.

Indiscriminately cruel are the words that must be used to describe these criminals to whom innocence has proved to be no deterrent and proximity enough for a death sentence.

The tragedy raises tough questions. How many of our young men are involved in the ‘gun and drug trade’ which National Security officials have fingered for the attack? How deeply are they embedded? How many of them are on the streets in reasonable day jobs?

The government was aware of the issue at least as weeks ago at the very onset of this violence the premier rejected the idea that the young men involved in crime were not able to support themselves saying rather that they were trying to take shortcuts to wealth.

“In this microwave generation where instant gratification surpasses everything else there are too many young people who don’t want to go through the process and work hard. If you’re not prepared to do it the old-fashioned way and to be honest you’re making a shortcut that could potentially end in an early grave.”


Photo Credit: NAACP Arlington Branch

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Statement on Incident Involving Visitor on 2nd October 2022



#TurksandCaicos, October 4, 2022 – The Government of the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) regrets the unfortunate incident involving the death of a visitor to our islands on 2nd October 2022.  The incident which occurred was accidental and not one in which the victim was targeted.  While the Royal Turks and Caicos Islands Police force (RTCIPF) continues their investigations, we wish to reassure the public (citizens, residents, and visitors alike) that the safety and security of all, is our top priority.

The TCI has long established itself as a safe destination for visitors from around the world.  Evidence of this can be seen in the countless awards the destination has won, most recently at the World Travel Awards.  Our commitment to providing safety to residents and visitors is unwavering.  The government will continue to work with local authorities including the RTCIPF and our partners in the international community to protect residents and visitors alike.

The incident which occurred on the date mentioned above is one that is rare and does not reflect who we are as a people.  On behalf of the government and people of these islands, we extend our sympathies to the family and friends of the victim.

As this matter is now an on-going police investigation, further statements will be referred to RTCIPF.

The TCI remains a safe destination and the government is working assiduously for it to remain as such.

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