• Fallen American and Bahamian members of the armed services honoured during wreath-laying ceremony on Memorial Day
    Fallen American and Bahamian members of the armed services honoured during wreath-laying ceremony on Memorial Day
  • HMBS Arthur Dion Hanna first thrust in ‘new strategies’ against transnational crime
    HMBS Arthur Dion Hanna first thrust in ‘new strategies’ against transnational crime
  • BTC awards $5,000 scholarship to Primary School Student of the Year
    BTC awards $5,000 scholarship to Primary School Student of the Year
  • Tourism Minister joins Sandals executives at travel event in Los Angeles
    Tourism Minister joins Sandals executives at travel event in Los Angeles
  • BTC, PMH and Doctors Hospital team up for World Blood Donor Day
    BTC, PMH and Doctors Hospital team up for World Blood Donor Day
  • Fishermen's bounty enjoyed at Romora Bay
    Fishermen's bounty enjoyed at Romora Bay
  • U.S. Embassy sponsored leadership development workshop attracts youth
    U.S. Embassy sponsored leadership development workshop attracts youth
  • 'Wearable Art meets Wall Art' shows off unique styles at event opening
    'Wearable Art meets Wall Art' shows off unique styles at event opening
  • Game of Thrones fans compete in short film competition presented by Cable Bahamas & HBO
    Game of Thrones fans compete in short film competition presented by Cable Bahamas & HBO
  • Culture rocks the opening of IAAF World Relays Bahamas 2014
    Culture rocks the opening of IAAF World Relays Bahamas 2014



Rotary Club of Old Fort helps Gambier Primary School
Submitted by Royann Dean   

NASSAU, Bahamas -- The members of the recently formed Rotary Club of Old Fort (RCOF), the newest Rotary club in The Bahamas, organized a cleanup day at Gambier Primary School in Gambier Village. The cleanup initiative was undertaken to create a space for a student garden. Bruce Ferguson, President of the RCOF said, “Our club is proud to help children in our community to understand the importance and joy of growing their own food and forming healthy eating habits.” The club engaged a business partner from the community, Caribbean Landscaping, to assist its members with the project.

Rotary Club of Old Fort members and volunteers from Caribbean Landscaping after a hard day’s work at Gambier Primary School.

 
Bahamian forestry officer participates in U.S. State Department exchange focused on environmental protection
Submitted by the U.S. Embassy Nassau   

Ministry of the Environment Forestry Officer Danielle Hanek pays a courtesy call on U.S. Chargé d’Affaires a.i. Lisa Johnson to discuss her recent participation in an International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) focused on Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation.NASSAU, Bahamas -- On Tuesday, July 29, Ministry of the Environment Forestry Officer Danielle Hanek paid a courtesy call on U.S. Chargé d’Affaires a.i. Lisa Johnson to discuss her recent participation in an International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) focused on “Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation.” Ms. Hanek, the only participant from the Caribbean region was joined by conservationists representing both the private and public sectors from seventeen different countries.

During the program, participants engaged their American counterparts about efforts in the United States to protect biodiversity through environmental protection policies and sustainable land and water management programs. The group explored governmental and non-governmental programs designed to encourage biodiversity protection and sustainable land and water management and they also considered climate change realities and renewable energy alternatives that could mitigate the effects of climate change on the environment and biodiversity. The IVLP participants visited Washington, D.C., Jackson, Wyoming, Los Angeles, California and Las Vegas, Nevada.

While meeting with Chargé Johnson, Ms. Hanek discussed how she plans to apply her experiences to promote environmental protection and biodiversity conservation in The Bahamas. She also shared her ideas about the potential to develop partnerships with the United States Forest Service and other forestry organizations in the United States.

As a follow-up to the IVLP exchange, in August 2015, Ms. Hanek will facilitate an informative presentation on “Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation” at the American Corner, Harry C. Moore Library, College of The Bahamas.

Photo: Ministry of the Environment Forestry Officer Danielle Hanek pays a courtesy call on U.S. Chargé d’Affaires a.i. Lisa Johnson to discuss her recent participation in an International Visitor Leadership Program (IVLP) focused on “Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation.”

 
Royal Bahamas Defence Force Damen RoRo 5612 launched in Vietnam
Submitted by Ben Littler   

This month, a Damen RoRo 5612 was launched at Halong Shipyard in Vietnam. The RoRo is one of nine Damen vessels ordered by the Royal Bahamas Defence Force as part of its Sandy Bottom Project. The vessel’s multi-purpose capabilities will be put to use by the Defence Force in a range of situations including law enforcement, aids to navigation (ATON), replenishment at sea (RAS), the re-supply to Defence Force bases and the provision of disaster relief throughout the island nation and the wider Caribbean community.

The Bahamas’ location in the Hurricane Belt makes it important that the country has this capability. The Defence Force works with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) for the provision of disaster relief. NEMA has pre-deployed warehouses throughout the country, stocked with all the necessary food, fuels, tools and equipment that the Defence Force is responsible for transporting in the event of an emergency.

The Damen RoRo 5612, will provide the Defence Force with a means of independent, rapid response to any situation that might arise throughout the 500-mile span of the island chain. Damen is providing the vessel with an on board disaster package, featuring modular containers hosting a field kitchen, emergency power generators, first-aid station, drinking water treatment facilities and tools for carrying out repairs, amongst other things. The containers can easily be placed on board the vessel for transportation and unloaded when they are not required, freeing up deck space for other operations.

Commander Warren Bain of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force has been in the Netherlands, working closely with Damen throughout the project. He explains: “With this vessel we will be able to respond to storm warnings faster, pre-deploying emergency supplies to where they are needed. Then we can get the vessel to a safe place, returning swiftly to execute a plan of assistance as soon as the storm has passed. We can deploy this vessel wherever it is needed, not only in the Bahamas, but across the entire Caribbean region.”

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Fox Hill MP Fred Mitchell speaks on Emancipation Day
Submitted by BIS   

Hon. Fred Mitchell, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Immigration and the member for Fox Hill delivered remarks during the Emancipation Day Service on Monday 3rd August on the Fox Hill Parade grounds. Remarks by
Fred Mitchell MP Fox Hill
On Emancipation Day observances
(Ecumenical Service of Thanksgiving)
Fox Hill Parade

3rd August 2015

May I ask you at this time to remember our fallen member of the Fox Hill Festival Committee, Mrs. Paula Tynes and our late friends and brothers Frank Edgecombe, William Rahming, Charles Johnson and Eric Wilmott. May they rest in peace.

Today we mark the 181st anniversary of the emancipation of the slave trade in the British Empire. In 1834 when this act came into force, The Bahamas or the Bahama Islands as they were then known were part of the British Empire. The slave masters received compensation for their slaves in The Bahamas from the imperial parliament. The slaves got not a penny. Today we are still fighting the issue of reparations for the labour which was given up for free and without their permission.

The Constitution of The Bahamas tells us today that no man shall be a slave. That is absolutely prohibited, but words in a constitution do not stop slavery. Today we fight modern slavery in that many women, children and foreign workers are subject to the deprivation of their liberty by threats and by physical abuse in many places around the world. That is why we have a Trafficking In Persons law (TIP), to be sure that we have the tools in a modern society to fight this new scourge. We must be ever on the lookout for it.

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Government ‘jumped the gun’ over Rubis leak risks
Submitted by DP&A   

Save The Bays CEO Vanessa Haley-Benjamin questions the decision to tell Marathon residents they have nothing to fear, based on preliminary and incomplete evidence

Residents protest outside the Rubis station on Robinson Road, supported by Save The Bays and other concerned citizens.NASSAU, Bahamas -- The government displayed poor judgment and risked giving false hope to Marathon residents by releasing incomplete findings on the health risks associated with the Rubis fuel spill on Robinson Road, Vanessa Haley-Benjamin said.

Lending her support to last week’s protest by Marathon residents outside the station, Haley-Benjamin, CEO of fast-growing social and environmental movement Save The Bays (STB), said authorities were wrong to tell residents they have nothing to fear from the toxic chemicals to which they were exposed for upwards of two years, as medical tests are far from complete – and likely to be less than conclusive when they are.

“The release of these premature results is unfortunate,” she said. “The government clearly jumped the gun. In reality, there is no satisfactory way in the short term to verify conclusively whether a person has been exposed to low levels of certain chemicals, for example benzene.”

Haley-Benjamin noted that according to Dr. van de Weerdt, toxicologist and consultant with the Pan-American Health Organization (PAHO), while the preliminary results may be encouraging, it remains important to establish a complete picture of the situation – both in terms of completing the health risk assessments and being in a position to reassure concerned citizens.

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