News On The Go
Courts seeing more guilty pleas
Minister of Justice Delroy Chuck says the courts have been getting more guilty pleas, which has freed up resources.
"The statistics have shown that the largest proportion of matters completed in the first six months was by way of guilty pleas, that is, 62.2 per cent of matters being completed by way of guilty pleas in the first quarter, and 58.91 per cent in the second quarter," Chuck said.
Citing the Chief Justice's Statistics Reports for the parish courts for the period January-June 2018, Chuck informed that the Case Information Statistical System (CISS) has been extended to the Civil and Family divisions as well as the Coroner's Court and Special Coroner's Court.
The Minister also noted that work has commenced to collect similar data for Tax and Traffic Court matters and reports are now being prepared to include these additional business lines.
In addition, quarterly reports are now routinely prepared and are also posted to the Supreme Court website.
Norman Manley Airport divested
The Government has divested the operation of the Norman Manley International Airport (NMIA) to Mexican entity, Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico S.A.B. De C.V. (GAP).
A 25-year concession agreement was signed yesterday at the Office of the Prime Minister by the chairman of the Airports Authority of Jamaica (AAJ), which owns the NMIA, William Shagoury; President and CEO, Audley Deidrick; and GAP's CEO, Raul Revuelta Musalem; and Head of the entity's subsidiary, PAC Kingston Airport Limited, Saul Villarreal Garcia.
Under the agreement, GAP will be responsible for improving the airport's land and air operational efficiency, and financing and completing a modernisation programme, at an estimated cost of more than U$110 million.
Additionally, the Government will receive a guaranteed percentage of the airport's gross revenues. The entity has the option to extend the arrangements by an additional five years.
The GAP emerged the preferred of three bidders, which included two consortia of foreign and local investors.
Health fair on today
The Jamaica Society for the Blind (JSB) will today offer a free health fair for World Sight Day.
The day will include blood pressure, blood sugar, blood cholesterol, vision screening, and hearing tests.
The patrons of the health fair will also have the chance to talk to representatives from Programme for Advancement Through Health and Education.
The fair will be held on the grounds of the Jamaica Society for the Blind at 111 1/2 Old Hope Road, beginning at 8:30 a.m.
The JSB will also have displays of craft, including bracelets, necklaces and crochet items for sale.
Health Minister wants dietitians to be Jamaica Moves ambassadors
Minister of Health, Dr Christopher Tufton, has called on newly certified dietitians to become ambassadors for the Jamaica Moves campaign.
"Your vocation, your willingness to engage and to develop your capacity, makes you the chief advocates of health and wellness from that dietary position. You are going to create that balance that is going to be necessary for Jamaica Moves, and any such similar programme, to achieve its full potential," he said.
The graduates, most of whom work in health departments in the public sector, are the first cohort to be trained under the programme, which is endorsed by the ministry.
Over the 30-month course, the participants had to attend classes, do rotations, write assignments, and do a panel examination with the Final Competence Assessment Team (FCAT).
Jamaica Moves encourages persons to eat healthy and exercise in order to prevent non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cardiovascular conditions, cancers, chronic respiratory diseases, and diabetes.
St James communities facing water issues
The National Water Commission (NWC) has apologised to customers in some sections of St James, for the disruption they are experiencing in their water supply.
The agency said it is due to mechanical challenges at its Montpelier facility.
Areas impacted include Montpelier, Cotton Tree, and Anchovy Estate.
The maintenance team is working to resolve the challenges and restore water by Friday.