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For Immediate Release: Concern about racism in Baha Mar criticism

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I have taken note of the country’s raging debate built on the false message about the completion and opening of the Baha Mar project. The message was sent out from a radio personality on Monday, the 23rd May.

The Bahamas is a democracy and a free society, so public discourse is par for the course. What is of concern however is when racism and jingoism appear to be seeping into the dialogue and public discourse. We should not wander down that path for that is the wrong path.

Since that false message, described as an “absolute lie” by our Prime Minister, was circulated, the response from many in the Bahamian public, largely driven by social media, was to attack the investment because the investors are “Chinese.” Money as we know has no colour, race or ethnicity or nationality.

On social media, the Bahamian national anthem was desecrated by being sung in mock Chinese; the Bahamian flag desecrated by overlaying a Chinese flag; the Prime Minister’s statement on the Budget yesterday turned into mock Chinese; the Bahamian national currency photo shopped and defaced by replacing the Queen with a Chinese national figure; a Buddha photo shopped over the Queen Victoria Statue in Rawson Square, and the inference that Chinese are being endowed with hegemonic powers in The Bahamas.

This type of propaganda is not amusing. It is patently offensive and irresponsible. No nation, but particularly one of majority African ancestry where they have had to fight and continue to fight every day for their human dignity to be recognized, should be engaging in this kind of dog whistling and  border line race baiting for the fun of it. It is unbecoming of us as a country.

Peoples of African descent and the Diaspora have suffered this kind of indignity and disrespect for literally centuries. Bahamians need only look at the personal attacks on the heritage of America’s first African American president to understand that this fight for dignity by the African Diaspora continues today.

We can disagree with the policies, the decisions, the results, the investment without going down that unseemly road.

There is no evidence that the People’s Republic of China have any hegemonic political or economic designs on The Bahamas.

We have to be more responsible than that and look at the facts.

The Baha Mar project did not fail because it was a “Chinese” investment.

Our country, both duly elected governments by the Bahamian people, went to the China Export Import Bank and supported a private developer to build Baha Mar. Our leaders, both FNM and PLP, represented that it was in our national interest to do so.  It was a transaction done on commercial terms and approved unanimously in the House of Assembly.

The China Export Import Bank has not as far we know reneged on any aspect of the arrangements. The record shows that the developer so managed his investment, resulting in his inability to pay his bills and the property was placed into receivership, not by the cabinet but by and under the supervision of the Bahamas Supreme Court. No amount of Facebook or social media propaganda and rewriting of history can change that.

What is further concerning though is that a front organization on Facebook which appears to be aligned with the failed developer and calling themselves by the patently offensive name “Baha Mar citizens” seems to be fueling this anti-Chinese fervor as a cover for the defaults of the developer.

Our country’s image abroad as a place for investment and in tourism cannot develop the reputation of being racists or jingoists. I therefore sound this word of caution on this and say it has gone far enough and must come to an immediate end.

I appeal to our better nature on this score where the country’s international reputation and vital interests are at stake.

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Tim and Henry to the Rescue: A Harrowing Search and Rescue Mission Highlights Need for Marine Vessel in Grand Turk

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#TurksandCaicos, July 12, 2024 – At approximately 2:45 pm on July 12th, a 911 emergency call came in from the police department in Grand Turk, informing Ed Forbes of a distressing situation. Four young adult tourists had gone out on paddle boards off Cork Tree Beach in Grand Turk, when one of them fell off the board and could not get back on. Evidently, they underestimated the wind speed and their own brute strength.

Ed Forbes, co-owner of Exclusive Escapes Grand Turk, played a pivotal role in coordinating the rescue. Responding swiftly to the emergency call, he immediately reached out to the local search and rescue team. His prompt actions and calm demeanor were instrumental in mobilizing the necessary resources.

Within 20 minutes or so, Tim from Emerald Escapes, along with Henry and Kindry from Blue Water Divers, were on the scene. Their experience and swift response were crucial in ensuring the safety of the stranded paddleboarders. Working seamlessly together, they managed to locate and rescue all four individuals without any need for medical attention.

However, this incident also underscores a critical issue that has long plagued Grand Turk: the need for a dedicated marine vessel for search and rescue operations and cruise passengers incidents. Despite numerous promises made to concerned citizens over the years, this vital resource remains unavailable.

The swift response of Tim, Henry, and Kingdry highlights the community’s resilience and dedication, but it also brings to light the gaps in emergency preparedness that could be addressed with better equipment and support.

A dedicated marine vessel would significantly enhance the efficiency and safety of rescue operations, ensuring that responses to such emergencies are even more effective.

Ed Forbes
Concerned Citizen

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Invest TCI Opens New Office in Grand Turk

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PRESS RELEASE

 

Providenciales, Turks and Caicos Islands – July 11th, 2024—Invest Turks and Caicos Islands (Invest TCI) proudly announces the launch of its new office in Grand Turk, located at the Digicel Building on Old Airport Road. The grand opening of the new location occurred on Friday, July 5th, 2024, under the theme “Empowering Enterprises in the Capital.”

The establishment of the new office marks a significant milestone in Invest TCI’s growth strategy. The primary objective of the expansion is to provide enhanced services and support to the business community in Grand Turk. By increasing operational capacity, Invest TCI aims to facilitate sustained growth and success for enterprises within the country.  Beyond economic advancement, this initiative is set to yield substantial community benefits, including the creation of employment opportunities.

The grand opening ceremony attracted a diverse range of attendees, including recipients of the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) programme, members of the business community, government officials, and Invest TCI staff. The event was moderated by Mr. Keno Forbes, Vice President of Investor Services. Special remarks were delivered by the Premier, Hon. Charles Washington Misick, who congratulated the InvestTCI team on their hard work and encouraged the community to take advantage of the benefits offered by the new office. He reiterated the government’s commitment to creating a supportive environment for businesses in the Turks and Caicos Islands.

Additional remarks were provided by Invest TCI Chairperson, Ms. Cindy Ewing; Business Advisor, Ms. Lashena Simmons; Director of the Business Support Unit, Mrs. Anissa Adderley; and Vice President of SME, Ms. Alexa Cooper. Their contributions highlighted the collaborative effort and dedication that have driven the success of Invest TCI initiatives.

Expressing her enthusiasm for the new office, Invest TCI CEO, Mrs. Angela Musgrove, stated, “Our vision is clear and compelling: to further empower Invest Turks and Caicos Islands, the agency offers incentives and support that enable more efficient and innovative practices. We are committed to helping businesses thrive, and in doing so, we are helping our entire community.”

Invest TCI recognizes the integral role that Micro, Small, and Medium Enterprises play in the economic and social development of the Turks and Caicos Islands. Through its Business Support Unit, the agency provides comprehensive support services to startups and existing entrepreneurs, ensuring they have the tools and resources to succeed.

The grand opening of the new office in Grand Turk represents a significant step forward in Invest TCI’s mission to support and empower businesses across the islands. The agency looks forward to fostering economic growth and development and ensuring a prosperous future for all.

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LAST AMERICAN TOURIST SENTENCED TO A FINE OF $1500.00 OR SIX MONTHS IMPRISONMENT IN DEFAULT, SHE’S ALSO SENTENCED TO 23 WEEKS IMPRISONMENT SUSPENDED FOR ONE YEAR

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(Thursday, July 11th, 2024) Turk and Caicos Islands – The last of five American tourists arrested in the Turks and Caicos Islands (TCI) for being in unlawful possession of  ammunition could finally leave the TCI today, Thursday, July 11th, 2024.

Sharitta Grier 46 pleaded guilty on 25th June to having two rounds of.38 ammunition in her bags, at the Howard Hamilton International Airport in Providenciales on Monday 13th May, 2024, when leaving the Turks and Caicos Islands after a surprised Mother’s Day vacation trip, from her daughters.

Her Ladyship The Hon. Ms. Tanya Lobban-Jackson agreed with senior defense counsel, Ms. Sheena Mair of F-Chambers that there are exceptional circumstancés in Grier’s case, by this, the court departed from the mandatory minimum sentence of twelve years imprisonment and ordered a lighter sentence of $1500.00 or Six months imprisonment if fine is not paid. She’s also sentenced to 23 weeks imprisonment suspended for one year.

Holding for the office of the Director of Public Prosecution via link was Dr. Angela Terry Brooks, deputy director of the DPP’S office.

The prosecution office did oppose exceptional circumstances and invited the court to impose the mandatory minimum sentence of twelve years imprisonment.

A more detailed court report will follow.

Wilkie Arthur
Court Correspondent
Eagle Legal News Media

(Feel free to contact us at phone number #3423407 for advertisements, sponsors, and/or donations in support of this Growing Media Network)

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