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SHARING THE LOVE: Each one Help one

Five-minute feature on acts of kindness by local or overseas based non-government individuals and organisations that have benefitted Jamaicans.

00:00 / 04:52

Written and produced by the Radio Department of the Jamaica Information Service

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News for Week of January 22, 2023
We are here to inspire, motivate and uplift.

OCT-DEC 2022

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Cops get more devices for digitized ticketing system

The Ministry of National Security has handed over 750 Traffic Ticket Management System handsets and 750 mobile handheld printers to the Jamaica Constabulary Force.

This is the first instalment of devices towards nationwide implementation of the fully digitized ticketing system to become effective February 1.

Smart android devices and portable printers are to be used to facilitate the electronic issuance of traffic tickets and allow for electronic recording of tickets.

This will enable police officers to reference driver and vehicle information, including ticket history, outstanding tickets, and warrants.

National Security Minister Dr. Horace Chang said the new system replaces the yellow ticket book, which was inefficient and prone to errors. “The system itself was riddled with challenges. The technology identified 21 points of failure in our ticketing system,” he said, noting that these include poor penmanship, which affected the legibility of tickets, data entry errors, late submission of tickets, among other things.

The initiative was piloted in Kingston and St. Andrew between January 1 and March 31, 2022, with 70 devices and yielded a 90 per cent error reduction.

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MAY-JUN 2022

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St Ann traffic teams to target crash hotspots

The St. Ann police will increase its monitoring of several crash hotspots in the parish, to reduce road fatalities. Commanding Officer Senior Superintendent Dwight Powell said that most of the road crashes in 2022 occurred along the North-South Highway, Llandovery Main Road, and Queens Highway in Discovery Bay.

He reported that the parish recorded 36 fatal collisions that resulted in 47 deaths, compared to 32 fatal crashes, which resulted in 35 deaths in 2021.

“We have identified a few areas that are of cause for concern,” he said. “So, places like the Llandovery main road, which remains a place to be policed constantly, and the North-South highway, which gave us quite a few fatal collisions last year. We had quite a few problems down there on the Queens Highway last year and those are some areas that we will be putting some specific focus on this year in terms of road policing.”

 

He called on motorists to drive with caution and exercise good judgement in their use of the roadway.

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Holness says resources in place to probe big fraud

Prime Minister Andrew Holness has assured that no effort will be spared in uncovering the full extent of fraudulent activity at Stocks and Securities Limited (SSL) in Kingston and bringing the perpetrators to justice.

The Prime Minister said that he is concerned and sympathetic to the hard-working Jamaicans who are uncertain of the status of their funds invested with SSL.

He noted that while every investor’s distress must be equally acknowledged, “there is a dimension of a heightened public sense of betrayal, which I share, that a National Icon who has brought so much pride to all of us, is also a victim of the alleged fraud”.

The Prime Minister said that a thorough investigation is being undertaken to identify the perpetrators and colluders involved in the fraudulent activity, as well as to trace the stolen funds and secure forfeiture of assets acquired with these.

“The Government will ensure that the laws and systems in place work for the benefit of the general public good, accountability for those responsible, and justice for those negatively affected,” he stressed.

“The affected investors and the public,” the prime minister emphasized, “can be assured that the investigative and prosecutorial agencies have the necessary competencies and resources and have already started to act decisively to gather information and evidence.”

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RADA gets tractors to aid farmers in six parishes

Six new farm tractors, valued at $50 million, have been presented to the Rural Agricultural Development Authority (RADA) by the Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries.

They are intended to bolster activities in six high-producing parishes, namely St. Thomas, St. Ann, St. Elizabeth, Clarendon, Manchester and St. Catherine, and will add to the seven tractors currently in use by the entity.

Portfolio Minister Pearnel Charles Jr. said that expanding RADA’s equipment fleet is “a step in the right direction” in strengthening the agency’s capacity to provide for the nation’s farmers.

“Food security is a priority for every single Jamaican, and we don’t want to just be producing food, we want to be producing in a sustainable way and operating as efficiently as possible,” he said. “So, the utilization of mechanization and equipment and innovation is important.”

The Minister said that the tractors are to assist RADA-registered farmers, at discounted rates, with land preparation, plowing, harrowing, farrowing, ripping, rotovating, bush cutting, as well as provide support with drainage.

Utilizing the equipment is also in keeping with the Ministry’s ‘Grow Smart’ thrust, which speaks to production through efficiency.

Census on track for new March deadline

The Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) is reporting that most of the administrative process-related issues affecting the 2022 Population and Housing Census’ initial phase have been resolved.

The Census, which commenced last September last year on a phased basis in western parishes and subsequently rolled out islandwide, was slated for completion within three months.

The exercise was, however, extended into the first quarter of 2023 based on the issues arising, to ensure maximum coverage of the Jamaican population, and is now scheduled to conclude in March.

Director General of STATIN Carol Coy said that the Institute will “continue to address concerns as they arise”. She said that one of the issues being addressed is the recruitment of census takers, consequent on a shortfall in the number of persons currently engaged.

STATIN targeted the recruitment of approximately 7,000 field officers to administer the Census islandwide. Ms. Coy indicated, however, that the Institute did not achieve this figure, pointing out that “we have onboarded approximately 4,800”.

A year of opportunity for Africa

By Landry Signé

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WASHINGTON, DC – The past year has been challenging for Africa. After a hopeful 2021, during which the continent-wide GDP increased by nearly 7% and every region experienced real growth, the economy slowed in 2022 amid rising inflation, monetary tightening, and geopolitical tensions.

 

But it was also a year when African countries were finally able to make their voices heard on the global stage. At the start of another critical year, with the continent’s GDP projected to increase at a relatively modest pace of 4.1%, governments can take several steps to boost economic activity and ensure a sustainable future.

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