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Musical Legend KB’s Latest Save The Bays Release ‘Das What Real Bahamians Do’ Tackles the Silent Tough One, the PSA

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Nassau, 07 Mar 2016 – Kirkland ‘KB’ Bodie, the musical artist who delivers tough messages to catchy rhythm and rhyme, released his latest Youtube salvo yesterday, taking aim at the government for threatening to replace important land use legislation with a weaker act that he fears fails to protect land or life.
The song ‘Das What Real Bahamians Do’, written, performed and produced by ‘KB’, is the latest in a litany of the musician’s lyrics for the environmental movement Save The Bays and like the others, it puts the conscience of a country on notice.
“Past songs like ‘Hold dey feet to da fire’ were important because they set the tone, making the point that people need to ask for and demand accountability,” said KB. “But today’s release dealing with the Planning and Subdivision Act was far more challenging. How do you make land use rights and responsibilities sexy? How do make the need for an environmental impact assessment for all developments something people relate to, make it fun, and translate the importance of the right to public consultation into a language that makes people care?”
The Act has been a priority issue for Save The Bays, the grass roots environmental organization that has nearly 20,000 followers and friends on Facebook. Environmental attorney and consultant Romi Ferreira, a director of Save The Bays, has been spreading the message of the need to keep the 2010 legislation, speaking to Rotary and other civic organisations, appearing on radio talk shows, at public forums and in paid ‘Say No to PSA’ radio and print ads.
“This bill, the 2015 Planning and Subdivision Act that would replace the 2010 Act that we all fought so hard for and was agreed upon, an Act that was passed unanimously, takes away the rights of Bahamians,” said Ferreira. “It takes away the right to be consulted. It is the legitimate expectation of a community to be consulted, to express its opinions and concerns and for those opinions and concerns to be considered before a decision is rendered that will alter that community’s future.”
Under the proposed legislation, basic rights of public consultation would vanish and the decision to require an environmental impact assessment would be in the hands of a Cabinet Minister for developments of more than 100 lots despite The Bahamas having signed on to a global agreement to the contrary. The 100-lot scenario, says Ferreira, would only encourage developers to build in phases, 99 lots at a time.
While Ferreira looks at the proposed legislation through the eyes of a senior lawyer who has taken environmental and public consultation cases all the way to the Privy Council in London, KB is hoping to get the message across in a way that touches a nerve with a beat that people can’t get out of their heads.
“I don’ get it,” sings KB. “I don’t understand, why the government does give away our land…Y’all voted yes on the PSA, now ‘dat y’all in power, you wanna’ take it way…You shouldn’t change the rules when they don’t suit you, you shouldn’t change the law just for the few.”
Save The Bays, which sponsors the music with a message and the production of videos appealing to tens of thousands of viewers, has picked up the pace for public online involvement of the environmental movement while partnering with several organisations that have long track records in environmental resource management. A petition to keep the 2010 Planning and Subdivision Act is on its website at www.savethebays.bs and a separate petition calling for Freedom of Information legislation and an environmental protection act along with other measures has already attracted nearly 7,000 signatures.

Magnetic Media is a Telly Award winning multi-media company specializing in creating compelling and socially uplifting TV and Radio broadcast programming as a means for advertising and public relations exposure for its clients.

Caribbean News

Barbados bestows Humanitarian Award on PAHO director Dr. Carissa Etienne 

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By Shanieka Smith

Staff Writer

 

#Barbados, November 25, 2022 – The newest recipient of Barbados’ Humanitarian Award is outgoing Pan American Health Organization Director, Dr Carissa Etienne.  The government of Barbados grants this award to frontline workers who were instrumental during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Upon receiving the award, Dr. Etienne expressed her gratitude for the recognition, noting, however, that she was more grateful for the opportunity to have served on the island. She also praised Prime Minister, Mia Mottley for her diligence in leading the country and regional involvement during the pandemic.

Humanitarian medals were also given to Frontline workers who risked their own safety to ensure the needs of the public were met. Those who held supporting roles on the frontline received humanitarian lapel pins, and those who made generous donations were given humanitarian plaques.

Dr. Etienne highlighted one major lesson from the pandemic, “we are only safe when the weakest among us is also safe”.

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Bahamas News

Bahamas and Turks & Caicos Immigration Ministers make appearance on TCI Radio Talk Show

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By Dana Malcolm

Staff Writer

 

#TheBahamas, November 25, 2022 – “We have a humanitarian concern of course but we can only absorb so much” was how Fred Mitchell, Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Public Service in The Bahamas addressed the issue of the UN constantly nudging Caribbean countries about the deportation of migrants and recommending that it not be done.

He was speaking Thursday November 24 with Cheryl and Zhavargo on First Edition which airs on RTC FM.

While acknowledging that the UN offices likely ‘have to do what they do’ Minister Mitchell  explained that the current irregular migrants trying to get into the Bahamas did not fit the bill of ‘refugees’ as defined by the UN.

“We have a treaty obligation that says that if people have a fear of persecution in their home country that we have an obligation to take them in as asylum seekers. The people who come through on these boats from the south of us are not asylum seekers. They are afraid of poverty and that’s a difficult issue but in a legal sense we’re not obligated to embrace people on that basis.”

He cited a study that had found, on any given day there were around 7,000 illegal migrants in The Bahamas trying to get to the US maintaining that his chain of islands had to take a stand on the issue.  The Foreign Affairs minister acknowledged that  TCI was in an identical situation, citing also the the cultural effects of irregular migration.

“There is a cleavage which has developed in our own society over this; people are very concerned that we could lose our identity if we do not get on top of it.”

Earlier this year Arlington “new sheriff in town” Musgrove, Minister of Immigration and Border Services in the Turks and Caicos had described statements calling on surrounding countries to do more to assist persons fleeing Haiti as “reckless and misguided.”

“Haiti has a population of 11.6 million people. How could any small developing state like the Turks and Caicos Islands assist that number of people or even the smallest fraction of them? We have a population of some 47,000 persons, and our health care, education and other social systems remain fragile and could never withstand an influx of refugees. This would be a risk to our very own livelihood,” he had said.

He was interviewed in the same show on Thursday prior to Mitchell and expressed a similar determination to crack down on illegal migration.

“I want to stress this. If we catch anyone harbouring illegals, it could be my mommy, she’s going up. We cannot tolerate this. We’re catching the sloops so my Haitian brothers and sisters should stress to them don’t waste your money we’re sending you back.”

Turks and Caicos, this year passed a law, doubling fines and prison times for individuals harbouring illegal migrants.

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Bahamas News

Former Bahamian Cabinet minister defends record amid ongoing police investigation

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By Shanieka Smith

Staff Writer

 

#TheBahamas, November 25, 2022 – Former Youth, Sports and Culture Minister, Lanisha Rolle is reportedly currently under investigation due to several allegations that came up during her tenure; she however knows nothing of this alleged criminal investigation.

After the minister resigned – unceremoniously –  in February 2021 with little explanation, the ministry was locked down by the Prime Minister for an audit of the National Sports Authority, which fell under her ministry.

Auditor General Terrance Bastin revealed that unauthorised contracts had been issued, some of which were later forwarded to the NSA for payment. Three cheques to contractors were also found, which were paid to individuals and then collected by a senior ministry official.

Despite the allegations, Rolle said she upheld cabinet standards and good governance during her tenure. She added that a minister is not always aware of “everything in a ministry at any given time.”

Rolle said she has not yet been approached by the RBPF regarding the audit findings.  Having served as a member of the Police Force for 11 years herself, Rolle told a crush of media on Wednesday (November 23) that she continues to trust that they will follow the legal process and in due time, the truth of her innocence will be revealed.

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