October 2018 Archives

6 years in US prison for lottery scammer

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scam-alert.jpgLavrick Willocks who masterminded a lottery scam that defrauded at least 95 Americans out of more than US$5.8 million was sentenced Monday to six years in a US federal prison.

Prosecutors said Willocks, 29, operated the scam out of a mansion in Jamaica where he lived with his mother, Dahlia Hunter.

US authorities eventually charged 27 people and identified victims in at least five states: North Dakota, South Dakota, South Carolina, Texas and Arizona. Officials said one of the victims died by suicide.

Willocks pleaded guilty in July 2017 to conspiracy, and prosecutors dropped 65 other counts of wire fraud, mail fraud and money laundering.

He faced up to 40 years in prison, but Assistant U.S. Attorney Jonathan O'Konek recommended only about six years because Willocks cooperated and his plea deal prompted several other defendants to also plead guilty.

Willocks, who stood and addressed U.S. District Judge Daniel Hovland, apologised for his role in the scheme but accused the government of overstating his involvement. All his co-defendants have pleaded guilty or been convicted, and most have been sentenced, including Hunter, who was sentenced last week to about 1 ½ years of time served.

The case is being prosecuted in North Dakota because the investigation began there in 2012, a year after an 82 year-old woman lost her life savings. Defense attorney Joe Johnson asked for a sentence of two years -- about the time Willocks has already served -- saying the Jamaican became a reluctant leader only because he had a college education.

Willocks will be eligible for parole after serving about another three years.





ruel-reid-photo-1.jpgEducation Minister Senator Ruel Reid has cautioned school administrators to manage their budgets wisely and not to place undue pressure on parents to plug shortfalls. Senator Reid has again reminded administrators that only voluntary contributions are to be requested of parents at the secondary level.

He was addressing the Conference of the Association of Principals and Vice Principals held on Sunday.Mr. Reid said with so many families struggling financially, the government has made efforts to give adequate funding to schools.

"We can't go back to the stage where we are forcing the parents to make the contribution and then we lock the money up in fixed deposit... It creates social problems because the same poor parents that we have to contend with out there complain. They say that they can't support that policy," argued the minister.

He said all school budgets have been received and will be scrutinised.





usain-bolt-wins-gold-200m-beijing-2015-photo-5.jpgUsain Bolt was stunned to learn he must take a drugs test despite having retired from athletics and waiting to learn if he will be given a professional contract in football.

The former sprinting star took to Instagram on Monday to show a testing notice he has received, apparently from Football Federation Australia (FFA).

"So guys, I've retired from track and field looking to become a footballer but look at this," said Bolt, before showing the letter on the video.

"How am I going to get a drug test today? I'm not even a professional footballer yet. Seriously.

"So I asked the lady: 'Why am I getting drug tested when I haven't signed for a club yet?' and she said they told her I'm an elite athlete so I have to get tested. Okay then."

Bolt is on trial with A-League side Central Coast Mariners, who are yet to offer him a contract.

The 32-year-old, who holds eight Olympic gold medals and the world records in the 100 and 200 metres.





ganja-seized.jpgThe narcotics police arrested and charged a man and woman, for breaches of the Dangerous Drugs Act on Thursday, October 11. They are 19-year-old Kaydian Sheppy of Kingston and 22-year-old Osborne Rowe, a labourer of Spanish Town in St. Catherine.

Sheppy and Rowe are jointly charged with possession of ganja, dealing in ganja, taking steps preparatory to export ganja, and conspiracy.

Reports are that about 11:30 a.m., Sheppy checked in to board a flight destined to the eastern Caribbean when her luggage was searched. Police say six and a half pounds of compressed ganja was found in a false compartment.

Sheppy was taken into custody and on further investigations, Rowe who gave the suitcase to Sheppy was also taken into custody.

The drug has an estimated street value of $26,000.

They are scheduled to appear in the Corporate Area parish court on Wednesday, October 17.





Nine alleged members of the Westmoreland based King's Valley gang, which includes two females, have been transferred to Kingston, following a joint police/military operation in Westmoreland on Wednesday. The operation was carried-out in King's Valley and Peggy Barry district in Grange Hill, Westmoreland.

Head of the Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime Investigation Branch (CTOC) Assistant Commissioner, Fitz Bailey, says the operation was conducted to curb murders in the area.

ACP Bailey says members of the King's Valley gang are wanted for various criminal activities in Westmoreland. The Assistant Commissioner says, a motor vehicle and a Taurus pistol are among items seized during the operation.

ACP Bailey has vowed to bring to justice, all other members of the king's valley gang.





Minister Bartlett orders Security Audit of Hotels

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ministry-of-tourism.jpgKINGSTON, Jamaica; October 14, 2018: Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett has ordered an intensive security audit of the tourism sector including hotels and attractions as part of efforts to strengthen destination assurance.

"I've directed the Tourism Product Development Company, which is in charge of maintaining quality assurance within the destination, to coordinate an intensive security audit of the sector so as to identify gaps and ensure that the destination remains safe, secure and seamless for visitors and locals alike. Security arrangements are part of the licensing requirements for many sector operators, so we will apply tough sanctions where breaches and or significant weaknesses are found. " said Minister Bartlett.

The Tourism Working Group established recently by Bartlett to conduct a comprehensive review of issues in the sector, and headed by PriceWaterhouseCoopers Senior Partner, Wilfred Baghaloo will also be a part of the process.

The Tourism Development Product Company, (TPDCo), through its various departments, works closely with all operators of tourism- related facilities promoting the attributes of a quality product, monitoring same and engaging the relevant authorities in a continuous effort to satisfy consumer demand and expectations. The company adopts, sets and promotes standards, guidelines and checklists for the industry in order to attain global competitiveness.

Minister Bartlett added that, "Security remains a top priority of my Ministry as this is an integral component to maintaining destination assurance. We are committed to ensuring that all visitors and locals feel safe."

The TPDCo will over the next couple of weeks review security protocols and issues across the sector and provide recommendations where needed. Tough actions where needed will follow.





MEXICO BEACH, Florida (AP): The small Gulf Coast community of Mexico Beach was known as a slice of Old Florida. Now it lies in splinters.Hit head-on by Hurricane Michael, homes in this town of about 1,190 people were shattered or ripped from their foundations. Boats were tossed like toys. The streets closest to the water looked as if a bomb had gone off. What the nine-foot storm surge didn't destroy, the 155mph (250 kph) winds finished off.

Now, rescuers and residents are struggling to get into the ground-zero town to assess the damage and search for the hundreds of people believed to have stayed behind.

Mishelle McPherson and her ex-husband looked for the elderly mother of a friend yesterday. The woman lived in a small cinderblock house about 150 yards from the Gulf and thought she would be OK.Her home was reduced to crumbled cinderblocks and pieces of floor tile.

"Aggy! Aggy!" McPherson yelled. The only sound that came back was the echo from the half-demolished building and the pounding of the surf.

"Do you think her body would be here? Do you think it would have floated away?" she asked.

As she walked down the street, McPherson pointed out pieces of what had been the woman's house: "That's the blade from her ceiling fan. That's her floor tile."

Drone footage of Mexico Beach on Thursday morning showed a stunning landscape of devastation. Few structures were unscathed. John Humphress, a storm chaser and drone pilot, arrived in Mexico Beach around 5 p.m. Wednesday, a few hours after Michael slammed into the coastline. He had one word to describe what he saw: "Apocalyptic."

State officials said 285 people in Mexico Beach had refused to leave ahead of the hurricane despite a mandatory evacuation order. A National Guard team went into the area and found 20 survivors overnight, and more crews were pushing into the area on Thursday. The fate of many other residents was unknown, authorities said.





Vanessa Bling hits Billboard

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vanessa-bling-addi.jpgDancehall artiste Vanessa Bling is rejoicing this week as her 'Still Standing' EP has made its Billboard Reggae Chart debut. Released on September 18, the six-track EP features the lead singles '10 Bags' and 'Freedom' which have been making the rounds on various radio stations locally and internationally.

Currently signed to Atlanta-based Outtaspace Entertainment and managed by En-Treeg Records, the Future Guaranteed artiste learned on Tuesday that her third EP debuted at number nine on the famed chart, earning the Hot Shot Debut Award.

"This is an amazing feeling," Bling said. "I always believed that this was where I belonged, and I am thankful for my label, my management and my entire team for believing in me as well.".

This is the first time the artiste has charted on Billboard, but she believes that she is destined for better.

"The work my team and I have been putting in is no joke. Believe me when I tell you, this is just the beginning," Bling said.

Still Standing isn't Vanessa Bling's first attempt at charting with an album. As Gaza Slim, she released Adidjaheim Records Presents: Introducing Vanessa Bling As Gaza Slim in 2011 which featured Vybz Kartel. Her second EP, Girl Boss, came out in 2012.

VANESSA BLING/.PSALM:35 on Instagram: "Lord I thank you 🙏Thanks to my amazing team and my fans for the love and support 🙏let's go #number1 #stillstandingEp @billboard #debut9..."





g-whizz.jpgSince fellow entertainer Popcaan posted a clip of the incident in which G Whizz chucked off into a not-crwded show and fell flat on his face on his Instagram page, the post has taken on life of its own with a multitude of persons commenting and reposting it.

However, G Whizz said that the Unruly Boss went further than just uploading the video.

"Big up Popcaan cause him post it and it go viral. Him actually message me after, and I was invited to his upcoming show in December in St Thomas," he said.

With another performance scheduled for tomorrow in Brown's Town, St Ann, he said he could not promise that he would not try the stunt again.

"I really don't know what to expect because sometime when yuh performing and the vibes a di whole show, things just happen. Same like how mi neva wake up and say mi a go jump off a di stage a Portmore today," he said.

For now G Whizz is looking forward to Unruly Fest scheduled for December 22.

876GUD on Instagram: "Him dead?😂😂"

Vezi această postare pe Instagram

Him dead?😂😂

O postare distribuită de 876GUD (@popcaanmusic) pe





g-whizz.jpgEntertainer G Whizz has gone viral after a clip of him diving into fans and falling flat on his face while performing at the Release College Tour at the Portmore Community College last Monday. He sprang into the air to dive into the arms of some females who were enjoying his performance, but instead of them catching him, as he had hoped, the girls all gave him enough space to fall like a ripe breadfruit off a tree.

The "Life Soon Sort Out" singer slammed into the ground, but fortunately he says he only received a few cuts and bruises. Persons are wondering why G Whizz would have chucked off like that because there was really no crowd to catch him. In an interview with Jamaican tabloid, the Star, G Whizz is reported as saying that he was motivated by the response that he was getting from singing his hit song, he explained that he was trying to take his performance to a higher level by springing into the air, soaring like a bird for a few seconds before landing on his hands, which prevented him from suffering more severe injuries.

"The show was just full of vibes, and mi just deh deh a sing, and di crowd a sing wid mi. Di way the show get nice, mi just decide fi dweet," he told The Star.

"Before I jumped, I leaned into the crowd a couple times and the girls dem ketch mi. It was just fun, but people nuh see all a dat (his performance), dem see di drop," G Whizz added.

Now that a clip of the incident has been going viral, he said that rather than feeling embarrassed, he is laughing just as much as everybody else is.

"I was laughing when I fell, and now that it out and it gone viral and people a laugh, I am laughing too," he said.

Pointing out that it is all entertainment, G Whizz said that this is not the first time he has had a mishap while performing.

"One time when I was on stage and I was performing in Canada, my pants buss out and mi underpants a show. I was in the middle of mi show, and mi haffi continue sing. The people there were laughing too, but dem enjoy the show same way too. So a just entertainment, it come wid some spontaneous moments," he told THE STAR.





krystal-tomlinson.jpgDancehall artiste, Beenie Man and girlfriend Krystal Tomlinson have reportedly welcomed their first child together.

According to sources close to the two, Tomlinson gave birth in the last 24 hours.

Unconfirmed reports also indicate that the child, said to be a girl, is on the incubator at a prominent medical facility as the baby was a bit early.

Back in July Tomlinson announced her pregnancy for the veteran entertainer after several years of dating.

This is the first child for Tomlinson and the 12th for Beenie Man, whose real name is Moses Davis.





The teenage student from Lacovia High School in St Elizabeth who had a fight with her mother in front of the school is now missing from home. According to the police, attempts to locate the girl at her home and her relatives' houses have so far been futile.

"The girl apparently ran away from home ... at this point, we could soon be putting out a missing person report for the child," a police insider said.

The video of the tussle between the child and her mother has been circulating online. The three-minute video clip shows the girl, who is in school uniform, is seen fighting her mother at the front of Lacovia High while being jeered by a group of students looking on. During the tussle, both the Lacovia High girl and her mother fell to the ground.

The video has triggered mixed reaction from Jamaicans. Some people criticise the woman apparently going to her daughter's school to beat the child, while others say the girl was out of order for fighting her mother.





charged.jpgA teen who was taken into police custody on Sunday, following accusations that he killed his 72-year-old step-grandfather and buried him in a shallow grave has been slapped with a murder charge.

The Constant Spring police today reported that the teen, 19-year-old Sahmar Graham, will be facing the court at a date to be announced for the death of Errol Seabourne, a farmer of Burnside Hill, Red Hills in St Andrew.

Seabourne was reportedly last seen on Friday morning, when relatives who had been preparing for the funeral of another family member said it was unlike him to not show up at the "set-up" and the funeral on Saturday.

On Sunday, when one of his nieces went to Seabourne's house to make checks, she was told by Graham, who was living with him, that he had not seen him since Tuesday.

The niece detected a foul odour and raised an alarm. Residents conducted a further search that led them to an area where they saw fresh soil and the dead man's hand protruding from the dirt.





grupo-aeroportuario-del-pacifico.jpg

grupo-aeroportuario-del-pacifico-will-operate-the-norman-manley-airport-in-2019.jpgKINGSTON, Jamaica, Oct. 10, 2018 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ -- The most honorable Andrew Holness, Prime Minister of Jamaica hosted the Norman Manley International Airport Public-Private Partnership Execution of the Concession Agreement to Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico (GAP).

GAP is a Mexican corporation that operates thirteen international airports in large metropolitan areas, industrial centers, and world-class leisure destinations of Mexico and Jamaica. In the last 18 years, the Group has invested over $1.2 billion US Dollars in the airports, positioning itself as one of the fastest growing airport groups of its size in the world. During 2017, the airports of the Group managed 40.7 million of passengers.

In April 2015, Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico assumed operational control of Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, investing over 191 million US Dollars to acquire a 74.5% stake in this airport. This was the largest investment of the Group outside Mexico.

GAP has developed a culture committed to customer service. One of the main objectives of the Group once it takes control of the operations of the Norman Manley International Airport next year, will be to improve the infrastructure and equipment to fulfill passengers' needs.

Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico, manages airports based on establishing strong partnerships with the airport owner, the passengers, the airlines, business developers, members in the air transportation industry and notably, with the local authorities.

"We will collaborate with the government of Jamaica in identifying tourism development opportunities and possible investors from Mexico; as well as explore potential growth for new resorts, tourism facilities and time-share business in parts of the country where the connectivity provided by the airport could be a catalyst", mentioned Raul Revuelta, Chief Executive Officer of the Group during the ceremony in which participated Hon. Robert Montague, Minister of Transport & Mining.

Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico, S.A.B. de C.V. (GAP) is a Mexican company that operates 13 international airports in the Pacific and Central Regions of Mexico and in the Caribbean:

  • Guadalajara and Tijuana, serving the main metropolitan areas.
  • Mexicali, Hermosillo, Los Mochis, Aguascalientes, Guanajuato and Morelia, serving mid-sized and developing cities.
  • La Paz, Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta, Manzanillo and Montego Bay, serving some of the leading tourist destinations.

In Mexico, the airports are owned by the Mexican government and were assigned 50-year concessions as part of a national initiative to privatize and improve the quality and safety of the country's airport services. In the last 18 years, GAP has invested over $1.2 billion USD in the airports. During 2017, the airports of the Group managed 40.7 million passengers.

In April 2015, GAP assumed operational control of the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay.





Sizzla to headline Chase The Cure concert

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sizzla-photo-4.jpgReggae star Sizzla will headline Chase The Cure Cancer Awareness and Benefit show next Sunday, October 14, at Turtle River Park, Ocho Rios, St Ann. The show, presented by Kloude9ine Entertainment, will also feature Tommy Lee Sparta, Macka Diamond, Lybran and Spotlight and will see the Jamaica Cancer Society benefiting with proceeds from the event.

Organiser Melvin Wright said the event came about because of experiences that family members have had with cancer.

"I'm doing this event because in late 2017 my younger sister found out that she had some cancerous abnormalities with her ovaries, and this was confirmed by four independent doctors. My sister had to schedule an emergency appointment for surgery to remove her ovaries," Wright is quoted in The Gleaner.

"Second, I currently have an uncle in Pennsylvania that is waiting to die from cancer, as not so long ago he was given less than one year to live and his health is rapidly declining," he added.

Wright, who hails from Warsop in Trelawny, has been contributing to his community in recent years. This includes donating 15 blood pressure machines, laser thermometers, chainsaws, coffee machines and other items to entities in the parish, such as medical centres and police stations.





sean-paul-photo-8.jpgSean Paul gives financial assistance to relocation of welding plant

Grammy award winning artiste, Sean Paul, having made a call for a welding plant located near the National Stadium pool, to be relocated due to the possible health hazard it presents has offered to to provide the financial assistance to the relevant authorities to complete the move.

"I am passionate about Jamaica's athletes and the energies they put into representing our country. I am also conscious of potential health and safety risks for everyone who chooses to use the facility. Not only swimmers, but netball and basketball athletes, parents, coaches, lifeguards, vendors and all staff of the stadium are equally negatively affected as they are all in close proximity to the plant. In light of this, I am petitioning for permanent removal of the welding site from the pool area to a more conducive place on the stadium grounds with very little hindrance to the workflow that, I understand, is necessary for the welding plant," he said.

Sean Paul further noted that following his recent comments on social media regarding the air pollution resulting from the welding site in close proximity to the National Stadium swimming pool, he very appreciative of the swift response by Major Desmond Brown, the general manager of Independence Park Limited -- the outfit that manages the stadium complex includes the pool.

Sean Paul is a former national waterpolo player.





Jimmy Cliff cancels shows after breaking hip

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jimmy-cliff-photo-1.jpgDr. Jimmy Cliff was forced to cancel his upcoming tour after he injured himself during a fall.

Reports are that Dr. Cliff was hospitalized after breaking his hip last month. Latifa, the wife of the legendary entertainer tells Music News that Jimmy Cliff is recovering well.

Jimmy Cliff has postponed all his shows for the month of October. His Management has apologized for the inconvenience via social media platforms.

It is not clear as to when the legendary entertainer will resume touring.





ganja-image-5.jpgDELTA, British Columbia (AP) -- Mat Beren and his friends used to drive by the vast greenhouses of southern British Columbia and joke about how much weed they could grow there. Years later, it's no joke. The tomato and pepper plants that once filled some of those greenhouses have been replaced with a new cash crop: marijuana.

Beren and other formerly illicit growers are helping cultivate it.

The buyers no longer are unlawful dealers or dubious medical dispensaries; it's the Canadian government. On October 17, Canada becomes the second and largest country with a legal national marijuana marketplace. Uruguay launched legal sales last year, after several years of planning. It's a profound social shift promised by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and fuelled by a desire to bring the black market into a regulated, taxed system after nearly a century of prohibition.

It also stands in contrast to the United States, where the federal government outlaws marijuana while most states allow medical or recreational use for people 21 and older. Canada's national approach has allowed for unfettered industry banking, inter-province shipments of cannabis, online ordering, postal delivery and billions of dollars in investment; national prohibition in the U.S. has stifled greater industry expansion there.

Hannah Hetzer, who tracks international marijuana policy for the New York-based Drug Policy Alliance, called Canada's move "extremely significant," given that about 25 countries have already legalised the medical use of marijuana or decriminalised possession of small amounts of the drug.

A few, including Mexico, have expressed an interest in regulating recreational use.

At least 109 legal pot shops are expected to open across the nation of 37 million people next Wednesday, with many more to come, according to an Associated Press survey of the provinces. For now, they'll offer dried flower, capsules, tinctures and seeds, with sales of marijuana-infused foods and concentrates expected to begin next year.





Police have launched an investigation into a physical altercation between a mother and her daughter at the front of a prominent high school in St Elizabeth.

The incident was captured on video and circulated online.

In the three-minute footage, the woman is seen fighting the girl, who is in school uniform, at the front of the educational institution while being jeered by a group of students looking on.

The tussle escalates to the point where both parties fall to the ground.

Police sources from St Elizabeth say that the law enforcement officials have since reached out to the two and are investigating the matter. According to the police insiders, personnel from the victim support unit have also gotten involved.





The community of Grange Hill in Westmoreland is now under heavy police-military security. Residents woke up this morning to find the community blanketed by soldiers and police with helicopters flying overhead.

"I have never seen anything like this in Grange Hill," said Errol Stewart, the principal of the Grange Hill High School.

"They have everything... dogs, metal detectors...you name it."

Grange Hill is currently the epicenter of the violence in Westmoreland. It has two major gangs fighting for the spoils of lottery scamming.

Earlier this year, seven murders were recorded in one night of extreme violence.





crime-scene-tape-gloves.jpgVeteran jockey, Vassel Najair died Monday from injuries sustained nearly two weeks ago at Caymanas Park. Najair was struck by getaway horse PERFECT ASSET on Wednesday, September 26, prior to the start of the seventh event. The incident occurred after three five-year-old mares bolted from the starting gate and ran onto a narrow walkway leading from the grandstand area to the winners' enclosure.

Najair suffered head injuries while trying to block the runaway horse and was rushed to the Spanish Town Hospital.

Michael Bernard, executive chairman of Supreme Ventures Racing and Entertainment Limited (SVREL), expressed his sorrow at Najair's passing.

"Both myself, as a horseman, and SVREL, regret the untimely loss of Najair. He was a very enthusiastic and dedicated member of the racing fraternity and, most recently, up to early September, an employee of SVREL," Bernard said.

Najair started riding July 29, 1967, and won a double on his first day in the saddle, partnering Gold Spoon to victory in the third race. He returned to land the ninth with Chantrelle. Najair recorded his last winner on August 7, 2017, aboard Peter McMaster's Ras Emanuel, taking his tally to 278 winners from 2,756 rides.





riu-hotel-rapist.jpgDetectives attached to the St James Criminal Investigations Branch have charged the entertainment coordinator who allegedly raped two female visitors at the RIU hotel in Montego Bay, St James.

Twenty-four-year-old Demar Dowe Scott, otherwise called 'Ninja', of Comfort district in Manchester, is charged with illegal possession of firearm, two counts of assault with intent to rob, two counts of rape, and two counts of grievous sexual assault.

He is scheduled to appear before the St James Parish Court on Wednesday.

Reports are that about 11:15 p.m on Thursday, September 27, Scott forcibly entered the hotel room of the two American women, brandished a firearm before sexually assaulting them.

It is further reported that one of the women disarmed him and shot him before he escaped.

Following investigations, Scott was arrested and subsequently charged.





Colin Powell slams Donald Trump on CNN

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donald-trump-photo-1.jpgFormer Secretary of State Colin Powell on Sunday slammed President Donald Trump, saying the United States has became 'me the president' instead of 'we the people.'

'My favorite three words in our Constitution is the first three words - 'We the People.' 'We the People.' But recently it's become 'me the president,' as opposed to 'We the People.' And you see things that should not be happening,' he said on CNN's 'Fareed Zakaria GPS.'

He also said he sees no way Trump can be a moral leader on the world stage.

'I don't know that he can do that because right now, that is not the way he is acting,' Powell said.

Powell, who head the State Department under President George W. Bush, was harshly critical of Trump's immigration policies, his treatment of the press, and the way he insults people. He challenged Trump's 'Make America Great Again' slogan, arguing the United States has always been great.

'We are great now. We always have been great,' he said. 'And so I think what we really have to do is to start changing our mode of dealing with the rest of the world and try to get a system where we are calming down, stop insulting everybody, and see if we cannot reach out.'

Powell also criticized Trump's attacks on media, who the president has dubbed the 'fake media' and 'the enemy of the press.'

'How can a president of the United States get up and say that the media is the enemy of Americans? Hasn't he read the First Amendment? You're not supposed to like everything the press says or what anyone says in the First Amendment,' Powell said.

The retired Army general also blasted the way Trump insults people.

'And I hope the president can come to the realization that he should really stop insulting people. And I used this two years ago when I said I could not vote for him in the 2016 election -- and why? He insulted everybody,' Powell said.

Trump's insults date back to the beginning of his 2016 presidential campaign, where he derided 'Crooked' Hillary Clinton and he has added on from there. He called his former FBI director 'lying' James Comey, labeled lawmaker Maxine Waters as 'crazy,' and called North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un 'rocket man.'

Powell also had strong words from Trump's 'zero tolerance' immigration policy that separated children from their families.





pope-francis.jpgThe Roman Catholic Church has recently been hit by one sexual abuse scandal after another, from Germany, to the United States, to Chile. At the same time, a deepening polarisation between conservatives and liberals in the Church has played out on social media. So the pope has now blamed the devil, but social media users are poinitng out that it must have been the "Devils in white robes" who are to be blamed

Francis' use of the term 'the great accuser' to describe Satan hit a raw nerve with one of the pope's harshest conservative critics, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the Vatican's former ambassador to Washington.

In an 11-page statement published on August 26, Viganò launched an unprecedented broadside by a Church insider against the pope and a long list of Vatican and US Church officials. He accused Francis of knowing about sexual misconduct by a former US cardinal with male adult seminarians but not doing anything about it. Viganò, concluding that his former boss had singled him out as the devil in disguise, complained in his next statement that Francis 'compared me to the great accuser, Satan, who sows scandal and division in the Church, though without ever uttering my name'.

On Sunday, a top Vatican official issued a scathing open letter accusing Viganò of mounting a 'political frame job devoid of real foundation' and contesting his accusations against the pope point by point.

Francis is so convinced that Satan is ultimately to blame for both the sexual abuse scandals and the divisions within the Church that he has enlisted the aid of St Michael the Archangel. Michael is mentioned several times in the Bible as the leader of the angels who ousted Lucifer, the fallen angel, from paradise. Catholics are being asked to recite the rosary daily in October and conclude it with a prayer to St Michael that was said after Mass until 1964 but then fell into disuse. The prayer reads: 'St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our defence against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou, O Prince of heavenly hosts, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan, and all evil spirits, who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of people.

But social media is reacting by calling all of the Pope's antic "hogwash".

"Yes, apparently Popeye doesn't believe in free will or people's ability to resist doing evil? While people might be tempted to do evil acts, they certainly have the freedom to not give in to whatever temptation. And so evil is freely committed - no one HAS to do any terrible act!"

"Well, you don't expect him to blame the men, do you? Heaven forbid!!!!"

"Yeah, Devils in White robes".

"I'm surprised it took this long to come up with that rubbish"

"A prime example of the State of Rome passing the buck yet again"

"Nice try Pope, but you're not going to dismiss the reprehensible things your employees are doing, by blaming it on the devil. Hillary didn't even use that excuse.......yet."





jamaica-prime-minister-andrew-holness-apologizes-for-inappropriate-action.jpgPrime Minster Andrew Holness has issued an apology over an 'inappropriate action' carried out on his Instagram account.

PM Holness made rounds on social media Friday after a screenshot surfaced which showed his official IG account liking a photo of a woman in a bikini uploaded to the popular media-sharing application.

The account handlers quickly unliked the images and released a statement, "An inappropriate action took place on this account today. This was done by one of our account managers," the notice read, "We have taken steps to ensure that this does not recur."





Foota Hype begs fans to help him get a new phone

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foota-hype-photo-1.jpgIs this for real?

Dancehall selector and artiste manager, Foota Hype has launched a GoFundMe account for social media users to assist in replacing his mobile device. Foota revealed over the weekend that his phone was damaged and is preventing him from during his normal Instagram live sessions.

Foota, whose given name is Oniel Thomas, launched the GoFundMe page with a target of US$1000.

"All my followers who love my [Instagram] live weh want mi get the new phone the GoFundMe up and running mek mi si if mi have real followers now," he wrote.

Foota Hype received US$120 from three donations in the first hour. He also stated in a video that he will be giving fans an address which they can ship phones to if they wish.





Hurricane Michael likely to hit Florida mid-week

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A tropical weather system that rapidly strengthened into Hurricane Michael on Monday is likely to intensify ahead of an expected strike on Florida's Panhandle by midweek, forecasters said. Michael could strengthen into a major hurricane with winds topping 111 miles per hour by Tuesday night before an expected strike on the Panhandle or Big Bend, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Since the storm will spend two to three days over the Gulf, which has very warm water temperatures and favourable atmospheric conditions, "there is a real possibility that Michael will strengthen to a major hurricane before landfall," Robbie Berg, a hurricane specialist at the Miami-based storm forecasting hub, wrote in an advisory.

Florida Governor Rick Scott issued an order for a state of emergency for 26 counties to rush preparations, freeing up resources and activating 500 members of the Florida National Guard. By mid-morning Monday, a large mound of sand in Tallahassee had been already been whittled down to a small pile as residents tried to prepare for potential flooding. A city of Tallahassee worker promised that another mound was ordered and on its way.

All indications are that it's going to be severe," said City Commissioner Gil Ziffer, adding that if the storm hits Florida's capital, there would be significant tree damage and power outages.

"Hopefully we will have no one hurt and no loss of life."

By 11 a.m. Monday, Michael's top sustained winds were around 75 miles per hour. The storm was centred about 50 miles off the western tip of Cuba, and about 140 miles east-northeast of Cozumel, Mexico.

It was moving north around seven miles per hour.





The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) is to rule whether charges are to be laid against the police corporal who was nabbed on Tuesday night, allegedly delivering firearms to gunmen in Newlands, Portmore, St Catherine. The 52 year old corporal, who is attached to the St Catherine South Police Division, was questioned for several hours Sunday in the presence of his attorney, Peter Champagnie.

A file is now being compiled for submission to the DPP.

Investigators have accused the policeman of being a member of the Umbrella Gang. He was arrested during an operation by members of the Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Branch (C-TOC). The cops intercepted his vehicle in the community of Newlands and seized an AK47 rifle, a Taurus pistol and more than 20 rounds of ammunition in his possession.

t's alleged that the policeman was delivering the guns and ammunition to members of the Umbrella Gang who are locked in a deadly feud with rival factions in Newlands.

An 18 year old boy was also arrested during the snap raid on Myers Lane.





hands-behind-bars.jpgInvestigators from the Major Investigation Division (MID) have detained the caretaker employed to the Church of God of Prophecy in Spanish Town, St Catherine, for questioning in connection with the murder of Pastor James Johnson. The caretaker was arrested Sunday during a raid at his house along Old Harbour Road in Spanish Town.

Acting Assistant Commissioner McArthur Sutherland, head of the Criminal Investigation Branch, reports that the cops went in search of the caretaker who had been eluding investigators over the last two weeks. He was found hiding in the ceiling of his house.

According to the senior investigator, the cops had been searching for the caretaker to ask him some questions about the "differing statements" he gave to investigators about the shooting death of Pastor Johnson. Investigators began preliminary questioning on Sunday, however, he is to be questioned in the presence of his attorney on Monday.

Acting ACP Sutherland declined to say whether he is a suspect.

Ballistics tests are now being conducted on the licensed firearm of the caretaker. A post mortem performed on Wednesday revealed that Pastor Johnson died after being shot in the neck and back by his assailant.

He was killed on the compound of the Church of God of Prophecy on September 23. It was reported that the 29 year old pastor was in his office at the church when he was attacked and shot. His licensed firearm was stolen.





7 years in prison for Peter Abrahams' murderer

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arrested -photo-1.jpgThe man who was last year charged for the killing of noted retired journalist and public commentator, Peter Abrahams, has been sentenced to seven years in prison for the crime.

The man - 61-year-old Norman Tomlinson - pleaded guilty to manslaughter last month, after having been charged with murder in February of last year.

Abrahams, 97, was found dead with multiple injuries at his home in Red Hill, St Andrew on January 18, 2017.

Reports were that Tomlinson, the spouse of Abrahams' household helper, visited the now deceased man and a dispute developed between the two men.

In a fit of rage, Tomlinson reportedly beat Abrahams to death.





World renowned Jamaican fashion designer Ivy Ralph passed away early this morning. She was 90 years old. Ralph, who was in Nuttall Hospital, died at approximately 3:45 am. Regarded as a pioneer of Jamaica's fashion industry, Ralph won worldwide acclaim when she created the Kareeba suit in the early 1970s.

"It was an idea I had as a child, a more comfortable style of dress for men. I wanted to help them get away from the jacket-and-tie routine, to something far more comfortably suited to the island's climate," Ralph is quoted in her biography.

Jamaica's then Prime Minister Michael Manley, the bio explained, "saw the ensemble and immediately sought out Ralph. The rest, as the saying goes, is history. It took off like wildfire, everybody wanted a Kareeba and she was busy night and day just trying to keep up with the orders, exporting to Saks Fifth Ave, B Altman, and top boutiques across the USA and the Caribbean".

The Kareeba, which was the subject of an article in the New York Times on March 24, 1976, was embraced by world leaders and celebrities, among them Barbados' Prime Minister Errol Barrow, Guyana's President Forbes Burnham, Tanzania President Julius Nyerere, the king of Swaziland, World Heavyweight Boxing Champion Muhammed Ali, and American pop star Michael Jackson in his young days. In 1999 Ralph the Jamaican Government invested Ralph with the Order of Distinction for outstanding contribution to the promotion of fashion for export.





earthquake.jpgPORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP): The US Geological Survey (USGS) says a 5.2 magnitude aftershock rattled northern Haiti, a day after a 5.9 magnitude earthquake left at least 12 dead and 188 injured at the same location. The USGS says the aftershock's epicentre was located 15.8 kilometres (9.8 miles) north-northwest of Port-de-Paix and had a depth of 10 kilometres. It struck at about 3 p.m. local time on Sunday.

"It was an aftershock. It was at the same location," said Paul Caruso, geophysicist with the USGS. "This is the first significant aftershock."

At the time, emergency teams were bringing relief to victims of Saturday's quake, which toppled cinder-block homes and rickety buildings. Authorities said at least 12 people died and 188 were injured.

The government reported seven deaths in the Nord-Ouest province and four other deaths in the community of Gros-Morne in the province of Artibonite, the newspaper Le Nouvelliste quoted Secretary of State for Communications Eddy Jackson Alexis as saying.

The US Geological Survey said the quake hit at 8:11 p.m. Saturday night and was centred 12 miles (19 kilometres) northwest of Port-de-Paix, which is about 136 miles (219 kilometres) from the capital of Port-au-Prince. The quake was 7.3 miles (11.7 kilometres) below the surface.

The country's civil-protection agency issued a statement saying several people were injured and some houses were destroyed in Port-de-Paix, Gros Morne, Chansolme and Turtle Island. Among the structures damaged was the Saint-Michel church in Plaisance.

The civil-protection agency officially confirmed the deaths of at least 10 people.

In 2010, a vastly larger magnitude 7.1 quake damaged much of the capital and killed an estimated 300,000 people.





Social media outpouring following Elva's death

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elva-ruddock.jpgThere has been a major outpouring of grief and shock on social media following the passing of Elva Ruddock, popular stand-up comedy performer and event host. Elva passed away, after battling the autoimmune disease, Lupus. Her death left the theatre and media communities on which Ruddock left her mark in shock.

Hundreds of persons have been putting up Elva's picture on their social media statuses as a way of paying tribute to the comedienne and host of the popular Full House Fridays on FAME.

Elva always showed her bubbly side and had kept the extent of her illness private. According to social media personality Marlon Campbell, Ruddock had made him aware the first time she was hospitalised during the summer, but he never had the opportunity to visit her. He had contacted her to host an event over the past week, but Ruddock's words were "Di doctor tell me to build a likkle bit."

Theatre practitioner and comedian Owen 'Blakka' Ellis said although he was aware of her diagnosis, Ruddock had chosen to not share the full details of her health and treatment with anyone within the circle. "She would not share her illness as a means to not give it the time and space. She would have only mentioned it and say: 'Mi nah talk about it'. In addition to that, she hated sympathy," he said.

Elva was raised in Rollington Town, St Andrew, before moving to Portmore, St Catherine, and is the second of four children born to Ruby and Charles Ruddock.





elva-photo-1.jpgMedia personality and comedienne Elva Ruddock died yesterday. Reports are that she had been ailing for some time with lupus and had been hospitalised.

News of her death has shocked the entertainment, media and theatre industries on which Ruddock made her mark.

"Elva was one of those persons who could easily bring sunshine on a rainy day in anyone's life. Her bubbly personality was quite infectious. Elva was one of a kind and will always be remembered for her hilarious interactions on TV and radio. She commanded our attention with her presence and she will be greatly missed by all of us," Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia Grange said in a statement.





Benefits of turmeric thyroid

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turmeric-c-ws.jpgThe endocrine system is a network of organs and the hormones they secrete which regulate body processes such as growth, metabolism, sexual function, sleep etc. The thyroid gland is one of the largest organs belonging to this system and plays an essential role. It is located in front of the throat above the collarbone with two lobes each present on either side of the windpipe.

The hormones secreted by thyroid regulate body metabolism and activity of other hormones. The principal hormones secreted by it are triiodothyronine, thyroxine and calcitonin. The first two hormones control growth and the rate at which body burns calories while calcitonin regulates calcium levels.

The thyroid gland is controlled by the pituitary, which is considered the 'master gland' of the endocrine system. 1 in 20 people suffers from a thyroid dysfunction at some stage in life. Thyroid disorders include:

Goitre: Enlargement of thyroid gland

Thyroid treatment involves taking thyroxine supplements in case of hypothyroidism and drugs to reduce activity in case of hyperthyroidism. When this line of treatment fails, part or whole gland can be removed surgically. Thyroid cancer and nodules are treated by surgical removal or radioactive iodine. Alternative medicine and naturopathy also offer remedies to these disorders.

7 Benefits of Turmeric In Thyroid disorders

Turmeric has antioxidant benefits in various thyroid disorders.

1. It is anti-inflammatory agent

Curcumin, as well as curcumin free turmeric, have natural anti-inflammatory properties. This can benefit in conditions like thyroiditis, goitre and thyroid cancer. Curcumin acts on pro-inflammatory enzymes like COX and LOX in order to control inflammation from spreading. Unlike regular NSAIDs which act only COX enzyme, curcumin acts on both the enzymes without causing any side effects like gastric and liver toxicity. Curcumin also regulates and inhibits the activity of key players in inflammation like TNF-alpha and Nuclear factor-kappa B. By acting on these proteins as well as other biochemical targets and inflammatory pathways, curcumin relieves inflammation as effectively as conventional therapy.

What does this mean?

Turmeric and curcumin help relieve inflammation naturally in various thyroid disorders.

2. It helps as an antioxidant

Curcumin and other curcuminoids in turmeric are strong antioxidants with antioxidant activity comparable to vitamin C and E. A study published in Indian Journal of Experimental Biology,2002 reveals that turmeric extract is as effective an antioxidant as vitamin E and C in hypothyroidism. In an animal study, Samanta et.al have demonstrated that turmeric and curcumin can counteract oxidative stress (imbalance between prooxidant and antioxidant agents) caused by elevated triiodothyronine levels.

What does this mean?

As antioxidants, curcumin benefit thyroid health and balance thyroid hormone levels.

3. It benefits in hyperthyroidism

Hyperthyroidism is a condition caused by elevated thyroid hormone levels. Elevated thyroid hormone levels can cause an imbalance between prooxidant and antioxidant levels in the body. Hyperthyroidism causes oxidative stress in the brain. Jena et.al have proven that curcumin can regulate the levels of antioxidant enzyme and relieve oxidative stress induced in the brain due to hyperthyroidism. Hyperthyroidism affects the levels of liver enzyme and in turn disrupts liver function. Curcumin and vitamin E combination is found to alleviate such damage and restore liver function.

Similarly, turmeric and curcumin are found to protect kidney function due to damage caused by hyperthyroidism.

What does this mean?

Curcumin and turmeric are proven to improve antioxidant defences and protect organs from damage caused by hyperthyroidism.

4. It benefits hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is when the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone. In an animal model of hypothyroidism, turmeric extract treatment is found to reduce atrophy (reduction in size) of thyroid glands and prevents reduction of thyroid hormone levels. It is also found to alleviate high levels of cholesterol caused by hypothyroidism. One study highlights that curcumin may have age-related effect on the thyroid gland. This study found that curcumin increases levels of thyroid hormones at a young age and reduces hormone levels in aged. Further studies are required to assess this finding.

What does this mean?

Turmeric helps stimulate thyroid hormone production in hypothyroidism.

5. Including turmeric in diet reduces risk of goitre

A study published in Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism investigated the role of dietary turmeric in development of goitre. In this survey, 2335 individuals were interviewed for disease history and screened for goitre. The population had an endemic goitre and high prevalence of hyperthyroidism was observed. Interestingly goitre was less common in those individuals who consumed milk, ghee, spices, chillies and turmeric.

The researchers emphasized that turmeric use was associated with reduced goitre development and recommended inclusion of turmeric in the diet in case of goitre.

What does this mean?

Dietary intake of turmeric reduces risk of developing goitre.

6. It has immunomodulatory action

Certain thyroid disorders are autoimmune condition like Graves disease and Hashimoto's disease. These are characterized by abnormal levels of thyroid hormones and can increase the risk of developing a goitre.

In autoimmune conditions, the antibodies produced to fight infection, start attacking body tissues instead paving way for inflammation and damage to various organs. Curcumin has immunomodulatory activity- it regulates immune responses. It regulates the activity of immune cells as well as cytokines (chemicals secreted by cells) that play an important role in autoimmune reactions thereby preventing them.

What does this mean?

Curcumin benefits in autoimmune conditions that affect the thyroid gland.

7. Turmeric protects from and benefits in thyroid cancer

Turmeric and curcumin are natural anti-cancer agents. (Read Turmeric for Cancer) Research suggests that curcumin may be an effective agent in inhibiting the growth of tumors and thereby aid in the treatment of thyroid cancer. Curcumin potentiates the anti-tumor and anti-cancer effect of sorafenib and docetaxel (anti-cancer drug) in treatment of thyroid cancer.

Curcumin is proven to sensitize thyroid cancer cells to the action of radioactive iodine which is used in treatment of thyroid disorders. Curcumin manipulates a number of biochemical pathways to inhibit metastasis of thyroid cancer.

What does this mean?

Curcumin can serve as anti-cancer agent in thyroid cancer and also prevents metastasis. It also sensitizes cancer therapy.

Dosage of Turmeric For Thyroid Disorders

Dietary turmeric can benefit in reducing the risk of thyroid disorders as well as benefit in treatment. A good way of taking turmeric is Golden Paste. It includes oil and black pepper to enhance absorption of turmeric and curcumin.

You can make the Golden Paste from fresh roots.

Start with ¼-1/2 tsp a day for a week and if no side effects are observed increase gradually. The recommended dose is 1-2 tsp 2-3 times a day (precisely 1 tsp 3 times a day). The ideal dose differs with every person; depends on what suits you and benefits you.

Avoid taking Golden Paste on an empty stomach and close to the time of taking medicines (Read Does turmeric cause acid reflux? Does black pepper in golden paste interact with medicines?)

Turmeric milk and Turmeric tea are other delicious options. Need help identifying a good brand of turmeric please click here.

If taking turmeric supplements consult a doctor prior.

Precaution

Dietary turmeric is very safe but a few precautions need to be considered when it comes to turmeric supplements:

Avoid during pregnancy and lactation

Avoid if suffering from gallbladder obstruction

Avoid if suffering from a bleeding disorder

Discontinue prior to surgery

If suffering from gout or at risk of developing kidney stones, limit intake of turmeric as a spice. (Is turmeric safe in gout? Does turmeric cause kidney stone?)

Avoid taking turmeric on an empty stomach to avoid acid reflux symptoms. (Does turmeric cause acid reflux?)

If suffering from a bleeding disorder, small doses of turmeric in the diet are safe but it is best to consult a doctor before taking turmeric or turmeric supplements in this case.

A general precaution is outlined that turmeric may have drug interactions with stomach acid reducing medication, antidepressants, blood sugar reducing drugs etc. Curcumin found in turmeric is known to interfere with drug metabolism.

Hence it is advised not to take curcumin supplements concomitantly with any other medicine. Consult a health practitioner before taking turmeric supplements.

Conclusion

Turmeric is rich in powerful natural antioxidants, which makes it therapeutically effective in thyroid disorders.

It can balance thyroid hormones in hyperthyroidism as well as hypothyroidism. It can help reduce inflammation and reduce the risk of goitre. Turmeric can prevent and benefit in thyroid cancer.

We highly recommend including turmeric in the diet to manage as well as prevent thyroid disorders.

(Source: https://www.turmericforhealth.com/turmeric-benefits/can-turmeric-help-in-thyroid-disorders)





Prayer of Jabez

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Prayer of Jabez: What is it?

The Prayer of Jabez comes from the Bible. In 1 Chronicles 4:10, we read: "And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that Thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that Thine hand might be with me, and that Thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested." The prayer is composed of four parts. First, Jabez asks God to bless him. Second, he asks God to enlarge his territory or increase his responsibility. Third, he prays that God will be with him and stay close. Lastly, Jabez asks that God keep him from harm so that he will be free from pain.

Prayer of Jabez: Why is it important?

The Prayer of Jabez reveals that Jabez understands what many people do not -- there is only one God and He should be the center of our work God wants to bless every life. But, we must first make the choice to invite God into our life and ask for His blessings. Jabez wants to succeed and increase his sphere of influence for God. The specific sphere of influence is not important. What is important is that when we want to reach for goals and accomplishments that we have God on our side. Proverbs 16:3 says, "Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established." It is critical to understand and practice this in a close relationship with God. Further, it is equally important to stay close to God and rely on His continued support and guidance throughout life. Jabez clearly knows and prays specifically to the One who can protect him from evil and pain -- God. At the end of the verse it is clear that God approved of this faithful prayer by granting it. It is also important to see that Jabez was passionate in his plea to God: "He cried out to the God of Israel." God wants to hear that we need Him through passionate prayer.

Prayer of Jabez: What does it mean to you?

The Prayer of Jabez reminds us that everybody struggles with choosing to rely on himself or God. Whether you are a focused Christian or just searching to find out more about God, life is a growing process. However, it is very clear in reviewing the Prayer of Jabez, as well as the rest of the Bible, that God is faithful in caring for those who seek Him. Jabez sets a great example of how God wants everyone to come to Him through constant and passionate prayer. If you are looking to start a relationship with God or improve your existing relationship with Him, start with prayer. God answers prayers when you trust Him (1 Chronicles 5:20). Prayers to God also please Him (Proverbs 15:8). We can all learn from Jabez and faithfully pray to God always in everything that we do.

Prayer of Jabez: The Book by Bruce Wilkinson

The Prayer of Jabez is covered in phenomenal detail by Bruce Wilkinson in his book of the same name. We highly encourage you to read this fantastic and inspiring resource, that challenges each of us to:

"Attempt something large enough that failure is guaranteed...unless God steps in!"

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

We have all sinned and deserve God's judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, "Jesus is Lord," you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.





Comedian Mike Epps to make his Jamaica debut

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American comedian Mike Epps is scheduled to make his Jamaican debut at Outburst Stand-Up Comedy Series on October 27. The event is slated to unfold at the National Arena in Kingston at 8:00 pm.

Khalil Shirley, an executive at Hyperlinks Limited -- event organisers -- said the occasion will mark the first in a series of shows to be staged across the Caribbean.

"We're starting in Jamaica and then basically touring with Mike to other Caribbean countries like Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago before we return here," Shirley told the Jamaica Observer. "Based on each rotation, we should be doing two shows annually in Jamaica. Hopefully, when we return it'll be with a Chris Rock or Katt Williams.

Shirley said it was another American comedic, Cedric the Entertainer, who paved the way for Epps's debut.

"What happened was we initially had Cedric in mind, but he started shooting a show that would conflict the scheduled date so he got us on to Mike and did the negotiations for us."

Epps is known for his roles in movies like Next Friday, Friday After Next, Meet the Blacks and The Fighting Temptations. He has also appeared in the Netflix specials Don't Take It Personal (2015) and Underrated & Never Faded (2009).

New York-based social media comedian Majah Hype, who recently performed in Jamaica, is also on the bill. Four local acts including Dufton Shepherd and Leighton Smith are also set to perform.





beres-hammond-photo-2.jpgBeres Hammond and VP Records are hoping for greater success with Never Ending, his latest album, which is due for release on October 12.

"We're very excited to be releasing the Beres album. I believe it could be one of his best records yet," Christopher Chin, CEO of VP Records, said in a media release.

Never Ending follows a successful tour of the United States by Hammond, who turned 63 in August. So far two singles from the set have been issued: I'm Alive and Land of Sunshine. The album features 14 songs, mainly about love and social issues. Willie Lindo, Kirk Bennett, Handel Tucker, Errol "Flabba Holt" Carter, Leroy and David Heywood aka "Mafia & Fluxy", Winston "Bo Pee" Bowen, Dean Fraser, and Robbie Lyn are some of the producers and musicians who worked on the project.

Never Ending is Hammond's first album since the double-disc One Love, One Life, which was released in November 2012. That set debuted at number one on the Billboard Reggae Album Chart and, according to Nielsen Music, for which tracks sales in the United States sold 10,986 copies.

Hammond, who began his career in the early 1970s, recorded with the Zap Pow Band before going solo and working with guitarist/producer Lindo on ballads like One Step Ahead and I Miss You. In the 1990s he was signed to Elektra Records, which released his major label debut album In Control.

That album featured the hit single No Disturb Sign, which was popular on reggae charts in the US but failed to crack major Billboard charts. In Control, however, peaked at number seven on the Billboard Reggae Album Chart.





New EP from Munga Honorebel

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munga.jpgControversial 'Bad From Me Born' deejay, Munga Honorebel is back with a new EP........or possible a new album......three years after the release of 'Excuse Me'.

The EP is tentatively scheduled for release at year-end.

Among the producers working on the project are Anju Blaxx, JJ Wizzle, Portmore Society, Jr Bloodline, and Hilltop Records. According to him, the EP will represent his talent and showcase his growth as an artiste.

"Expect Munga Honorable with various styles, sounds and presentations," he said.

Born Damion Rhoden, Munga is from Islington, St Mary. He entered the Red Label Wine Superstar Competition in 1997. Four years later, he began touring with dancehall act Capleton.





A police corporal and a teenager were arrested in Newlands, Portmore, St. Catherine Tuesday night.

The 52 year-old corporal and the 18 year-old boy were held with two illegal firearms, including an AK 47 rifle and a quantity of ammunition during a snap raid in Myers Lane.

The policeman is suspected to be a member of the Umbrella Gang which operates in Newlands. Superintendent Leighton Grey, head of Operations for the St. Catherine South Police, said about 8:30 p.m. his division was contacted by the Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Division (C-TOC) for assistance.

They intercepted a motor car which was being driven by the policeman. When the vehicle was searched, an AK 47 rifle with the serial number obscured, a magazine containing fifteen rounds of ammunition and a Taurus nine millimetre pistol were found.

The policeman's licensed firearm was also seized.

A pair of licence plates was reportedly found in the trunk of the car.

A man suspected to be the intended recipient of the guns escaped. He reportedly goes by the alias Terror Blacks. The policeman and the teenager are to be questioned by detectives from C-TOC.

The Police High Commmand has ordered a top level investigation into the suspected link between the police corporal and the criminal gang.

While the cops were arresting the police corporal and teen, heavy gunfire broke out in sections of Newlands. Members of the Umbrella gang reportedly invaded a section of the community and this led to a gun battle.

A man was arrested and placed under police guard Wednesday morning when he turned up at Kingston Public Hospital with a bullet wound to his mouth. C-TOC investigators say he is a member of the Umbrella gang.

There has been a flare-up of gang violence in Newlands since last weekend.Superintendent Grey said the friction between two gangs was triggered by a robbery.





The Bog Walk Gorge in St Catherine has been re-opened following reports that is was closed.

The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management says it made the decision to close the gorge for public safety reasons as rainfall continues in the hilly sections of St Catherine causing water levels in the Rio Cobre to rise.

In the meantime, the Barry route is now impassable.

Motorists are being urged to use alternative routes through Sligoville or the North-South Highway.

People are also urged to avoid flooded waterways such as fords, gullies, streams and rivers.

Despite the gorge being re-opened, motorists are advised to proceed with the usual caution.





Jamaica and France to sign air service agreement

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Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett recently departed the island for Paris, to finalise air service arrangements, which will result in the development of direct flights from Montego Bay to France.

"I am very excited to announce that Jamaica is going to be increasing connectivity with France. The Director of Tourism and I will be meeting with Air France/KLM and French Tourism Investors, to tie up an arrangement that will certainly benefit our country," said Minister Bartlett.

The discussion initially took place during a courtesy call by outgoing French Ambassador to Jamaica, Jean-Michel Despax to the Minister's New Kingston office.

During this meeting, a decision was also made for the Minister's delegation to visit officials such as the Jamaican Ambassador to France and a new marketing company.

"We are being invited to meet in France with the Minister of State for Foreign Trade, the Promotion of Tourism and French Nationals Abroad, Hon. Matthias Fekl, the French Aviation Authority, Air France and a number of investors who now have an interest in a Tourism Product in Jamaica. One of these investors is Sofitel [a chain of luxury hotels based in Paris, France, and owned by AccorHotels]," said the Minister.

According to data from the Jamaica Tourist Board, stopover arrivals from France in 2017 saw a 40.2% increase in arrivals, with 7400 visitors to the island. However, arrivals have not been consistent over the past seven years. The island had its peak in 2014 with 12,087 stopover visitors.

"We truly believe the arrivals from the French market will not only stabilise but see a significant increase once we improve the connectivity. There is a deep interest in our culture, food and music from French Nationals and of course our Jamaicans living in France. We will no doubt have to improve our marketing in this region, but I look forward to welcoming more French tourists once we have finalised this deal," said the Minister.





arrested -photo-1.jpgFour men are now behind bars after a cache of firearms, including an Uzi sub-machine gun, and more than 600 rounds of ammunition were found in a barrel at the wharf in Kingston yesterday. The police say two of the men were arrested at the wharf while the others were apprehended in secondary operations.

Law enforcement sources say the Uzi sub-machine gun, along with nine pistols, 26 magazines and the bullets were stashed in a barrel that also contained food items. The barrel was shipped from the state of Georgia in the United States and listed the recipient as a man in the Kingston 6 area, police sources revealed.

According to reports, detectives from the Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime Division (C-TOC) conducted a snap operation at Berth 7 at the Kingston Container Terminal where the barrel was scanned and "anomalies" discovered.

The weapons were found during a subsequent search.

Ammunition found

243 - 9mm bullets

100 - 5.56 bullets

100 - 7.62 bullets

130 - .40 bullets

50 - .45 bullets

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Popular female promoter from NY killed in Jamaica

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crime-scene-gun.jpgPopular dancer and female promoter who hails from Anchovy District in St. James, but resided in New York, USA, was shot and killed by gunmen in Anchovy, on Saturday, September 29, and her male companion shot and wounded.

She has been identified as Judith Annabell Miller-Warren, known to all as "Cocky Tractor". She was a popular dancehall promoter locally and abroad.

Reports by the Freeport police are that about 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Miller-Warren who recently arrived in the island, and a male companion, was travelling in a Nissan motor car in Anchovy community.

On reaching a section of the area known as Nigger Ground, they were ambushed by a group of armed men, who opened fire on the vehicle.

Miller-Warren and her male companion received multiple gunshot wounds to their upper bodies and are believed to have been robbed by their assailants.

The police were summoned and upon arrival, both victims were transported to the Cornwall Regional Hospital, where Miller-Warren was pronounced dead and the male admitted in critical condition.

Immediately following the news of her murder, a host of tributes started to roll out for Miller-Warren via social media.

"Cocky Tractor" as she was fondly called is remembered by her brilliant moves on the dance floor.

Just a few years ago, Miller-Warren now turn promoter entered the popular Dancehall Queen Contest and performed exceptionally well.





crime-scene-tape-gloves.jpgPolice Commissioner Major General Antony Anderson has condemned the killing of District Constable Mellissa Edwards-Whyte, who was assigned to Crime Stop.

Edwards-Whyte was fatally chopped during a domestic dispute at her home about 9:00 last night.

In expressing his condolences, the police chief said: "It is unfortunate that domestic violence has robbed us of another promising talent, Woman District Constable Mellissa Edwards-Whyte was met with such cruelty and callousness and no effort will be spared in bringing closure to this matter."

The Chaplaincy and Community Safety and Security Branch (CSSB) have been instructed to provide all the necessary support to colleagues and friends of the late district constable.

Members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) are also being reminded to use the resources available to the force, such as the Chaplaincy and Medical Services Branch, to assist them deal with domestic and other issues that impact their emotional, psychological and physical well-being.

In the meantime, police personnel are being encouraged to remain vigilant and undaunted as they continue to enforce law and order and build safer communities.





Alleged rapist hotel worker in police custody

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custody.jpgA Riu Hotel trainee worker who allegedly raped two female guests at gunpoint in their room on Thursday night is now in police custody.

Based on preliminary investigations, the police have identified the gunman as Demar Scott. However, there is uncertainty about where he is from as the police have found two identification cards for him, giving two different addresses. One ID card says he is from Exchange district in Ocho Rios, St Ann while the other says he is from Comfort district in Williamsfield, Manchester.

The 23-year-old suspect was held by police on Friday afternoon. In a statement, the hotel said the man had been in training for only three days before allegedly committing the dastardly act.

"Last (Thursday) night, September 27th, there was a very unfortunate incident in the Riu Reggae Hotel in which two guests were attacked by a trainee at the entertainment department of the hotel. The man, who had been in training for only three days, was able to escape," Riu said.

"The hotel management immediately called the police and accompanied and supported the guests with everything in this difficult moment," the hotel added.

The release did not reveal much details, citing protection of the guests' privacy.

"We are unable to share further details both for the protection of our clients privacy as well as to not interfere in the investigation being already carried out by the local authorities," the short statement read.

Police report that about 11pm, the gunman entered a room being occupied by two female guests at the prominent hotel through a balcony door.

The man then reportedly held up both women at gunpoint and forcibly had sexual intercourse with them, before being disarmed by one of the victims who opened fire at the suspect.

The suspect was reportedly shot in the upper body but still managed to escape through the balcony door. He remained on the lam for more than 12 hours before he was reportedly collared by cops in a central Jamaica parish early Friday afternoon





2000 pounds of ganja seized in Manchester

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ganja-seized.jpgThe Narcotics Division of the Jamaica Constabulary Force say they have placed a dent in the illicit ganja trade with the seizure of over 2,000 pounds of compressed ganja in Manchester on Friday.

Reports are that between 11:30 a.m., and 1:00 p.m. the police searched sections of the bushes along the coast line in Gutts River in the Alligator Pond area of Manchester, where several packages of marijuana were found.

No one was arrested. Members of the Narcotics Division are investigating.

The find follows Thursday's seizure of about 1300 pounds of compressed ganja in St Elizabeth.

Reports are that about about 8:00 p.m., members of the JDF Coast Guard were on patrol when they intercepted a vessel in the vicinity of Fort Charles Beach, Treasure Beach in St Elizabeth with three men aboard.

A search of the vessel revealed several packages of compressed ganja, weighing about 1300 pounds.

The men were taken into custody and the drug seized.





crime-scene-gun.jpgThe festering crime problem that has been plaguing St James jolted the tourism sector on Thursday night when a gunman barged into a hotel room in Montego Bay and raped two female tourists before he lost possession of his weapon and was shot by one of the visitors. After he was shot, the gunman allegedly jumped over a balcony and fled. The weapon, which was reportedly stolen from the room of another guest, was turned over to the police.

"Based on our initial investigations, the gunman was employed to the hotel two days ago as an entertainment coordinator, so it was not someone who walked in off the street," a police officer told The Gleaner. "The gun he had in his possession was stolen from the room of another guest, who is a licensed firearm holder."

According to police reports, at approximately 11:15 p.m., the two visitors, who are from Detroit in the United States, were in their room at the Riu Reggae Hotel in Ironshore, Montego Bay, when a man, who was armed with a handgun, walked in on them. With gun in hand, the man demanded that they perform various sexual acts on him.

While he was raping one woman, the gun reportedly fell from his hand. The other woman picked up the weapon and pointed it at him. He tried to disarm the woman, who fired two shots at him. He ran out of the room, jumped a balcony and fled. The police, who were summoned to the property, found blood stains below the balcony.

"We believe he was shot either once or twice, based on the amount of blood below the balcony and on the ground leading into bushes off the hotel's compound," said a police officer. "We will be carrying out further searches to see if we find him."

Based on preliminary investigations, the police have identified the gunman as Demar Scott. However, there is uncertainty about where he is from as the police have found two identification cards for him, giving two different addresses. One ID card says he is from Exchange district in Ocho Rios, St Ann while the other says he is from Comfort district in Williamsfield, Manchester.

"When we went to the location, one of the women handed over a 9mm Glock 17 pistol with serial number DTN201," said a police officer. "It was loaded with 16 live rounds of ammunition."

Confirming the incident in a statement, the management of RIU said: "Last night, September 27, there was a very unfortunate incident in the Riu Reggae Hotel in which two guests were attacked by a trainee at the entertainment department of the hotel. The man, who had been in training for only three days, was able to escape. The hotel management immediately called the police and accompanied and supported the guests with everything in this difficult moment. We are unable to share further details, both for the protection of our clients' privacy, as well as to not interfere in the investigation being already carried out by the local authorities."

Some six hours after the Riu incident, another Montego Bay hotel was also dragged into the news. At about 5:45 a.m. on Friday, the police, acting on information, went to the Hotel Gloriana on Sunset Boulevard in Montego Bay, where five men were arrested and two illegal firearms seized. The men were wanted in connection with a recent shooting in Spring Mount, also in St James.





usain-bolt-wins-gold-200m-beijing-2015-photo-5.jpgUsain Bolt was stunned to learn he must take a drugs test despite having retired from athletics and waiting to learn if he will be given a professional contract in football.

The former sprinting star took to Instagram on Monday to show a testing notice he has received, apparently from Football Federation Australia (FFA).

"So guys, I've retired from track and field looking to become a footballer but look at this," said Bolt, before showing the letter on the video.

"How am I going to get a drug test today? I'm not even a professional footballer yet. Seriously.

"So I asked the lady: 'Why am I getting drug tested when I haven't signed for a club yet?' and she said they told her I'm an elite athlete so I have to get tested. Okay then."

Bolt is on trial with A-League side Central Coast Mariners, who are yet to offer him a contract.

The 32-year-old, who holds eight Olympic gold medals and the world records in the 100 and 200 metres.





ganja-seized.jpgThe narcotics police arrested and charged a man and woman, for breaches of the Dangerous Drugs Act on Thursday, October 11. They are 19-year-old Kaydian Sheppy of Kingston and 22-year-old Osborne Rowe, a labourer of Spanish Town in St. Catherine.

Sheppy and Rowe are jointly charged with possession of ganja, dealing in ganja, taking steps preparatory to export ganja, and conspiracy.

Reports are that about 11:30 a.m., Sheppy checked in to board a flight destined to the eastern Caribbean when her luggage was searched. Police say six and a half pounds of compressed ganja was found in a false compartment.

Sheppy was taken into custody and on further investigations, Rowe who gave the suitcase to Sheppy was also taken into custody.

The drug has an estimated street value of $26,000.

They are scheduled to appear in the Corporate Area parish court on Wednesday, October 17.





Nine alleged members of the Westmoreland based King's Valley gang, which includes two females, have been transferred to Kingston, following a joint police/military operation in Westmoreland on Wednesday. The operation was carried-out in King's Valley and Peggy Barry district in Grange Hill, Westmoreland.

Head of the Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime Investigation Branch (CTOC) Assistant Commissioner, Fitz Bailey, says the operation was conducted to curb murders in the area.

ACP Bailey says members of the King's Valley gang are wanted for various criminal activities in Westmoreland. The Assistant Commissioner says, a motor vehicle and a Taurus pistol are among items seized during the operation.

ACP Bailey has vowed to bring to justice, all other members of the king's valley gang.





Minister Bartlett orders Security Audit of Hotels

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ministry-of-tourism.jpgKINGSTON, Jamaica; October 14, 2018: Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett has ordered an intensive security audit of the tourism sector including hotels and attractions as part of efforts to strengthen destination assurance.

"I've directed the Tourism Product Development Company, which is in charge of maintaining quality assurance within the destination, to coordinate an intensive security audit of the sector so as to identify gaps and ensure that the destination remains safe, secure and seamless for visitors and locals alike. Security arrangements are part of the licensing requirements for many sector operators, so we will apply tough sanctions where breaches and or significant weaknesses are found. " said Minister Bartlett.

The Tourism Working Group established recently by Bartlett to conduct a comprehensive review of issues in the sector, and headed by PriceWaterhouseCoopers Senior Partner, Wilfred Baghaloo will also be a part of the process.

The Tourism Development Product Company, (TPDCo), through its various departments, works closely with all operators of tourism- related facilities promoting the attributes of a quality product, monitoring same and engaging the relevant authorities in a continuous effort to satisfy consumer demand and expectations. The company adopts, sets and promotes standards, guidelines and checklists for the industry in order to attain global competitiveness.

Minister Bartlett added that, "Security remains a top priority of my Ministry as this is an integral component to maintaining destination assurance. We are committed to ensuring that all visitors and locals feel safe."

The TPDCo will over the next couple of weeks review security protocols and issues across the sector and provide recommendations where needed. Tough actions where needed will follow.





MEXICO BEACH, Florida (AP): The small Gulf Coast community of Mexico Beach was known as a slice of Old Florida. Now it lies in splinters.Hit head-on by Hurricane Michael, homes in this town of about 1,190 people were shattered or ripped from their foundations. Boats were tossed like toys. The streets closest to the water looked as if a bomb had gone off. What the nine-foot storm surge didn't destroy, the 155mph (250 kph) winds finished off.

Now, rescuers and residents are struggling to get into the ground-zero town to assess the damage and search for the hundreds of people believed to have stayed behind.

Mishelle McPherson and her ex-husband looked for the elderly mother of a friend yesterday. The woman lived in a small cinderblock house about 150 yards from the Gulf and thought she would be OK.Her home was reduced to crumbled cinderblocks and pieces of floor tile.

"Aggy! Aggy!" McPherson yelled. The only sound that came back was the echo from the half-demolished building and the pounding of the surf.

"Do you think her body would be here? Do you think it would have floated away?" she asked.

As she walked down the street, McPherson pointed out pieces of what had been the woman's house: "That's the blade from her ceiling fan. That's her floor tile."

Drone footage of Mexico Beach on Thursday morning showed a stunning landscape of devastation. Few structures were unscathed. John Humphress, a storm chaser and drone pilot, arrived in Mexico Beach around 5 p.m. Wednesday, a few hours after Michael slammed into the coastline. He had one word to describe what he saw: "Apocalyptic."

State officials said 285 people in Mexico Beach had refused to leave ahead of the hurricane despite a mandatory evacuation order. A National Guard team went into the area and found 20 survivors overnight, and more crews were pushing into the area on Thursday. The fate of many other residents was unknown, authorities said.





Vanessa Bling hits Billboard

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vanessa-bling-addi.jpgDancehall artiste Vanessa Bling is rejoicing this week as her 'Still Standing' EP has made its Billboard Reggae Chart debut. Released on September 18, the six-track EP features the lead singles '10 Bags' and 'Freedom' which have been making the rounds on various radio stations locally and internationally.

Currently signed to Atlanta-based Outtaspace Entertainment and managed by En-Treeg Records, the Future Guaranteed artiste learned on Tuesday that her third EP debuted at number nine on the famed chart, earning the Hot Shot Debut Award.

"This is an amazing feeling," Bling said. "I always believed that this was where I belonged, and I am thankful for my label, my management and my entire team for believing in me as well.".

This is the first time the artiste has charted on Billboard, but she believes that she is destined for better.

"The work my team and I have been putting in is no joke. Believe me when I tell you, this is just the beginning," Bling said.

Still Standing isn't Vanessa Bling's first attempt at charting with an album. As Gaza Slim, she released Adidjaheim Records Presents: Introducing Vanessa Bling As Gaza Slim in 2011 which featured Vybz Kartel. Her second EP, Girl Boss, came out in 2012.

VANESSA BLING/.PSALM:35 on Instagram: "Lord I thank you 🙏Thanks to my amazing team and my fans for the love and support 🙏let's go #number1 #stillstandingEp @billboard #debut9..."





g-whizz.jpgSince fellow entertainer Popcaan posted a clip of the incident in which G Whizz chucked off into a not-crwded show and fell flat on his face on his Instagram page, the post has taken on life of its own with a multitude of persons commenting and reposting it.

However, G Whizz said that the Unruly Boss went further than just uploading the video.

"Big up Popcaan cause him post it and it go viral. Him actually message me after, and I was invited to his upcoming show in December in St Thomas," he said.

With another performance scheduled for tomorrow in Brown's Town, St Ann, he said he could not promise that he would not try the stunt again.

"I really don't know what to expect because sometime when yuh performing and the vibes a di whole show, things just happen. Same like how mi neva wake up and say mi a go jump off a di stage a Portmore today," he said.

For now G Whizz is looking forward to Unruly Fest scheduled for December 22.

876GUD on Instagram: "Him dead?😂😂"

Vezi această postare pe Instagram

Him dead?😂😂

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g-whizz.jpgEntertainer G Whizz has gone viral after a clip of him diving into fans and falling flat on his face while performing at the Release College Tour at the Portmore Community College last Monday. He sprang into the air to dive into the arms of some females who were enjoying his performance, but instead of them catching him, as he had hoped, the girls all gave him enough space to fall like a ripe breadfruit off a tree.

The "Life Soon Sort Out" singer slammed into the ground, but fortunately he says he only received a few cuts and bruises. Persons are wondering why G Whizz would have chucked off like that because there was really no crowd to catch him. In an interview with Jamaican tabloid, the Star, G Whizz is reported as saying that he was motivated by the response that he was getting from singing his hit song, he explained that he was trying to take his performance to a higher level by springing into the air, soaring like a bird for a few seconds before landing on his hands, which prevented him from suffering more severe injuries.

"The show was just full of vibes, and mi just deh deh a sing, and di crowd a sing wid mi. Di way the show get nice, mi just decide fi dweet," he told The Star.

"Before I jumped, I leaned into the crowd a couple times and the girls dem ketch mi. It was just fun, but people nuh see all a dat (his performance), dem see di drop," G Whizz added.

Now that a clip of the incident has been going viral, he said that rather than feeling embarrassed, he is laughing just as much as everybody else is.

"I was laughing when I fell, and now that it out and it gone viral and people a laugh, I am laughing too," he said.

Pointing out that it is all entertainment, G Whizz said that this is not the first time he has had a mishap while performing.

"One time when I was on stage and I was performing in Canada, my pants buss out and mi underpants a show. I was in the middle of mi show, and mi haffi continue sing. The people there were laughing too, but dem enjoy the show same way too. So a just entertainment, it come wid some spontaneous moments," he told THE STAR.





krystal-tomlinson.jpgDancehall artiste, Beenie Man and girlfriend Krystal Tomlinson have reportedly welcomed their first child together.

According to sources close to the two, Tomlinson gave birth in the last 24 hours.

Unconfirmed reports also indicate that the child, said to be a girl, is on the incubator at a prominent medical facility as the baby was a bit early.

Back in July Tomlinson announced her pregnancy for the veteran entertainer after several years of dating.

This is the first child for Tomlinson and the 12th for Beenie Man, whose real name is Moses Davis.





The teenage student from Lacovia High School in St Elizabeth who had a fight with her mother in front of the school is now missing from home. According to the police, attempts to locate the girl at her home and her relatives' houses have so far been futile.

"The girl apparently ran away from home ... at this point, we could soon be putting out a missing person report for the child," a police insider said.

The video of the tussle between the child and her mother has been circulating online. The three-minute video clip shows the girl, who is in school uniform, is seen fighting her mother at the front of Lacovia High while being jeered by a group of students looking on. During the tussle, both the Lacovia High girl and her mother fell to the ground.

The video has triggered mixed reaction from Jamaicans. Some people criticise the woman apparently going to her daughter's school to beat the child, while others say the girl was out of order for fighting her mother.





charged.jpgA teen who was taken into police custody on Sunday, following accusations that he killed his 72-year-old step-grandfather and buried him in a shallow grave has been slapped with a murder charge.

The Constant Spring police today reported that the teen, 19-year-old Sahmar Graham, will be facing the court at a date to be announced for the death of Errol Seabourne, a farmer of Burnside Hill, Red Hills in St Andrew.

Seabourne was reportedly last seen on Friday morning, when relatives who had been preparing for the funeral of another family member said it was unlike him to not show up at the "set-up" and the funeral on Saturday.

On Sunday, when one of his nieces went to Seabourne's house to make checks, she was told by Graham, who was living with him, that he had not seen him since Tuesday.

The niece detected a foul odour and raised an alarm. Residents conducted a further search that led them to an area where they saw fresh soil and the dead man's hand protruding from the dirt.





grupo-aeroportuario-del-pacifico.jpg

grupo-aeroportuario-del-pacifico-will-operate-the-norman-manley-airport-in-2019.jpgKINGSTON, Jamaica, Oct. 10, 2018 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ -- The most honorable Andrew Holness, Prime Minister of Jamaica hosted the Norman Manley International Airport Public-Private Partnership Execution of the Concession Agreement to Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico (GAP).

GAP is a Mexican corporation that operates thirteen international airports in large metropolitan areas, industrial centers, and world-class leisure destinations of Mexico and Jamaica. In the last 18 years, the Group has invested over $1.2 billion US Dollars in the airports, positioning itself as one of the fastest growing airport groups of its size in the world. During 2017, the airports of the Group managed 40.7 million of passengers.

In April 2015, Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico assumed operational control of Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, investing over 191 million US Dollars to acquire a 74.5% stake in this airport. This was the largest investment of the Group outside Mexico.

GAP has developed a culture committed to customer service. One of the main objectives of the Group once it takes control of the operations of the Norman Manley International Airport next year, will be to improve the infrastructure and equipment to fulfill passengers' needs.

Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico, manages airports based on establishing strong partnerships with the airport owner, the passengers, the airlines, business developers, members in the air transportation industry and notably, with the local authorities.

"We will collaborate with the government of Jamaica in identifying tourism development opportunities and possible investors from Mexico; as well as explore potential growth for new resorts, tourism facilities and time-share business in parts of the country where the connectivity provided by the airport could be a catalyst", mentioned Raul Revuelta, Chief Executive Officer of the Group during the ceremony in which participated Hon. Robert Montague, Minister of Transport & Mining.

Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico, S.A.B. de C.V. (GAP) is a Mexican company that operates 13 international airports in the Pacific and Central Regions of Mexico and in the Caribbean:

  • Guadalajara and Tijuana, serving the main metropolitan areas.
  • Mexicali, Hermosillo, Los Mochis, Aguascalientes, Guanajuato and Morelia, serving mid-sized and developing cities.
  • La Paz, Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta, Manzanillo and Montego Bay, serving some of the leading tourist destinations.

In Mexico, the airports are owned by the Mexican government and were assigned 50-year concessions as part of a national initiative to privatize and improve the quality and safety of the country's airport services. In the last 18 years, GAP has invested over $1.2 billion USD in the airports. During 2017, the airports of the Group managed 40.7 million passengers.

In April 2015, GAP assumed operational control of the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay.





Sizzla to headline Chase The Cure concert

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sizzla-photo-4.jpgReggae star Sizzla will headline Chase The Cure Cancer Awareness and Benefit show next Sunday, October 14, at Turtle River Park, Ocho Rios, St Ann. The show, presented by Kloude9ine Entertainment, will also feature Tommy Lee Sparta, Macka Diamond, Lybran and Spotlight and will see the Jamaica Cancer Society benefiting with proceeds from the event.

Organiser Melvin Wright said the event came about because of experiences that family members have had with cancer.

"I'm doing this event because in late 2017 my younger sister found out that she had some cancerous abnormalities with her ovaries, and this was confirmed by four independent doctors. My sister had to schedule an emergency appointment for surgery to remove her ovaries," Wright is quoted in The Gleaner.

"Second, I currently have an uncle in Pennsylvania that is waiting to die from cancer, as not so long ago he was given less than one year to live and his health is rapidly declining," he added.

Wright, who hails from Warsop in Trelawny, has been contributing to his community in recent years. This includes donating 15 blood pressure machines, laser thermometers, chainsaws, coffee machines and other items to entities in the parish, such as medical centres and police stations.





sean-paul-photo-8.jpgSean Paul gives financial assistance to relocation of welding plant

Grammy award winning artiste, Sean Paul, having made a call for a welding plant located near the National Stadium pool, to be relocated due to the possible health hazard it presents has offered to to provide the financial assistance to the relevant authorities to complete the move.

"I am passionate about Jamaica's athletes and the energies they put into representing our country. I am also conscious of potential health and safety risks for everyone who chooses to use the facility. Not only swimmers, but netball and basketball athletes, parents, coaches, lifeguards, vendors and all staff of the stadium are equally negatively affected as they are all in close proximity to the plant. In light of this, I am petitioning for permanent removal of the welding site from the pool area to a more conducive place on the stadium grounds with very little hindrance to the workflow that, I understand, is necessary for the welding plant," he said.

Sean Paul further noted that following his recent comments on social media regarding the air pollution resulting from the welding site in close proximity to the National Stadium swimming pool, he very appreciative of the swift response by Major Desmond Brown, the general manager of Independence Park Limited -- the outfit that manages the stadium complex includes the pool.

Sean Paul is a former national waterpolo player.





Jimmy Cliff cancels shows after breaking hip

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jimmy-cliff-photo-1.jpgDr. Jimmy Cliff was forced to cancel his upcoming tour after he injured himself during a fall.

Reports are that Dr. Cliff was hospitalized after breaking his hip last month. Latifa, the wife of the legendary entertainer tells Music News that Jimmy Cliff is recovering well.

Jimmy Cliff has postponed all his shows for the month of October. His Management has apologized for the inconvenience via social media platforms.

It is not clear as to when the legendary entertainer will resume touring.





ganja-image-5.jpgDELTA, British Columbia (AP) -- Mat Beren and his friends used to drive by the vast greenhouses of southern British Columbia and joke about how much weed they could grow there. Years later, it's no joke. The tomato and pepper plants that once filled some of those greenhouses have been replaced with a new cash crop: marijuana.

Beren and other formerly illicit growers are helping cultivate it.

The buyers no longer are unlawful dealers or dubious medical dispensaries; it's the Canadian government. On October 17, Canada becomes the second and largest country with a legal national marijuana marketplace. Uruguay launched legal sales last year, after several years of planning. It's a profound social shift promised by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and fuelled by a desire to bring the black market into a regulated, taxed system after nearly a century of prohibition.

It also stands in contrast to the United States, where the federal government outlaws marijuana while most states allow medical or recreational use for people 21 and older. Canada's national approach has allowed for unfettered industry banking, inter-province shipments of cannabis, online ordering, postal delivery and billions of dollars in investment; national prohibition in the U.S. has stifled greater industry expansion there.

Hannah Hetzer, who tracks international marijuana policy for the New York-based Drug Policy Alliance, called Canada's move "extremely significant," given that about 25 countries have already legalised the medical use of marijuana or decriminalised possession of small amounts of the drug.

A few, including Mexico, have expressed an interest in regulating recreational use.

At least 109 legal pot shops are expected to open across the nation of 37 million people next Wednesday, with many more to come, according to an Associated Press survey of the provinces. For now, they'll offer dried flower, capsules, tinctures and seeds, with sales of marijuana-infused foods and concentrates expected to begin next year.





Police have launched an investigation into a physical altercation between a mother and her daughter at the front of a prominent high school in St Elizabeth.

The incident was captured on video and circulated online.

In the three-minute footage, the woman is seen fighting the girl, who is in school uniform, at the front of the educational institution while being jeered by a group of students looking on.

The tussle escalates to the point where both parties fall to the ground.

Police sources from St Elizabeth say that the law enforcement officials have since reached out to the two and are investigating the matter. According to the police insiders, personnel from the victim support unit have also gotten involved.





The community of Grange Hill in Westmoreland is now under heavy police-military security. Residents woke up this morning to find the community blanketed by soldiers and police with helicopters flying overhead.

"I have never seen anything like this in Grange Hill," said Errol Stewart, the principal of the Grange Hill High School.

"They have everything... dogs, metal detectors...you name it."

Grange Hill is currently the epicenter of the violence in Westmoreland. It has two major gangs fighting for the spoils of lottery scamming.

Earlier this year, seven murders were recorded in one night of extreme violence.





crime-scene-tape-gloves.jpgVeteran jockey, Vassel Najair died Monday from injuries sustained nearly two weeks ago at Caymanas Park. Najair was struck by getaway horse PERFECT ASSET on Wednesday, September 26, prior to the start of the seventh event. The incident occurred after three five-year-old mares bolted from the starting gate and ran onto a narrow walkway leading from the grandstand area to the winners' enclosure.

Najair suffered head injuries while trying to block the runaway horse and was rushed to the Spanish Town Hospital.

Michael Bernard, executive chairman of Supreme Ventures Racing and Entertainment Limited (SVREL), expressed his sorrow at Najair's passing.

"Both myself, as a horseman, and SVREL, regret the untimely loss of Najair. He was a very enthusiastic and dedicated member of the racing fraternity and, most recently, up to early September, an employee of SVREL," Bernard said.

Najair started riding July 29, 1967, and won a double on his first day in the saddle, partnering Gold Spoon to victory in the third race. He returned to land the ninth with Chantrelle. Najair recorded his last winner on August 7, 2017, aboard Peter McMaster's Ras Emanuel, taking his tally to 278 winners from 2,756 rides.





riu-hotel-rapist.jpgDetectives attached to the St James Criminal Investigations Branch have charged the entertainment coordinator who allegedly raped two female visitors at the RIU hotel in Montego Bay, St James.

Twenty-four-year-old Demar Dowe Scott, otherwise called 'Ninja', of Comfort district in Manchester, is charged with illegal possession of firearm, two counts of assault with intent to rob, two counts of rape, and two counts of grievous sexual assault.

He is scheduled to appear before the St James Parish Court on Wednesday.

Reports are that about 11:15 p.m on Thursday, September 27, Scott forcibly entered the hotel room of the two American women, brandished a firearm before sexually assaulting them.

It is further reported that one of the women disarmed him and shot him before he escaped.

Following investigations, Scott was arrested and subsequently charged.





Colin Powell slams Donald Trump on CNN

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donald-trump-photo-1.jpgFormer Secretary of State Colin Powell on Sunday slammed President Donald Trump, saying the United States has became 'me the president' instead of 'we the people.'

'My favorite three words in our Constitution is the first three words - 'We the People.' 'We the People.' But recently it's become 'me the president,' as opposed to 'We the People.' And you see things that should not be happening,' he said on CNN's 'Fareed Zakaria GPS.'

He also said he sees no way Trump can be a moral leader on the world stage.

'I don't know that he can do that because right now, that is not the way he is acting,' Powell said.

Powell, who head the State Department under President George W. Bush, was harshly critical of Trump's immigration policies, his treatment of the press, and the way he insults people. He challenged Trump's 'Make America Great Again' slogan, arguing the United States has always been great.

'We are great now. We always have been great,' he said. 'And so I think what we really have to do is to start changing our mode of dealing with the rest of the world and try to get a system where we are calming down, stop insulting everybody, and see if we cannot reach out.'

Powell also criticized Trump's attacks on media, who the president has dubbed the 'fake media' and 'the enemy of the press.'

'How can a president of the United States get up and say that the media is the enemy of Americans? Hasn't he read the First Amendment? You're not supposed to like everything the press says or what anyone says in the First Amendment,' Powell said.

The retired Army general also blasted the way Trump insults people.

'And I hope the president can come to the realization that he should really stop insulting people. And I used this two years ago when I said I could not vote for him in the 2016 election -- and why? He insulted everybody,' Powell said.

Trump's insults date back to the beginning of his 2016 presidential campaign, where he derided 'Crooked' Hillary Clinton and he has added on from there. He called his former FBI director 'lying' James Comey, labeled lawmaker Maxine Waters as 'crazy,' and called North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un 'rocket man.'

Powell also had strong words from Trump's 'zero tolerance' immigration policy that separated children from their families.





pope-francis.jpgThe Roman Catholic Church has recently been hit by one sexual abuse scandal after another, from Germany, to the United States, to Chile. At the same time, a deepening polarisation between conservatives and liberals in the Church has played out on social media. So the pope has now blamed the devil, but social media users are poinitng out that it must have been the "Devils in white robes" who are to be blamed

Francis' use of the term 'the great accuser' to describe Satan hit a raw nerve with one of the pope's harshest conservative critics, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the Vatican's former ambassador to Washington.

In an 11-page statement published on August 26, Viganò launched an unprecedented broadside by a Church insider against the pope and a long list of Vatican and US Church officials. He accused Francis of knowing about sexual misconduct by a former US cardinal with male adult seminarians but not doing anything about it. Viganò, concluding that his former boss had singled him out as the devil in disguise, complained in his next statement that Francis 'compared me to the great accuser, Satan, who sows scandal and division in the Church, though without ever uttering my name'.

On Sunday, a top Vatican official issued a scathing open letter accusing Viganò of mounting a 'political frame job devoid of real foundation' and contesting his accusations against the pope point by point.

Francis is so convinced that Satan is ultimately to blame for both the sexual abuse scandals and the divisions within the Church that he has enlisted the aid of St Michael the Archangel. Michael is mentioned several times in the Bible as the leader of the angels who ousted Lucifer, the fallen angel, from paradise. Catholics are being asked to recite the rosary daily in October and conclude it with a prayer to St Michael that was said after Mass until 1964 but then fell into disuse. The prayer reads: 'St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our defence against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou, O Prince of heavenly hosts, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan, and all evil spirits, who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of people.

But social media is reacting by calling all of the Pope's antic "hogwash".

"Yes, apparently Popeye doesn't believe in free will or people's ability to resist doing evil? While people might be tempted to do evil acts, they certainly have the freedom to not give in to whatever temptation. And so evil is freely committed - no one HAS to do any terrible act!"

"Well, you don't expect him to blame the men, do you? Heaven forbid!!!!"

"Yeah, Devils in White robes".

"I'm surprised it took this long to come up with that rubbish"

"A prime example of the State of Rome passing the buck yet again"

"Nice try Pope, but you're not going to dismiss the reprehensible things your employees are doing, by blaming it on the devil. Hillary didn't even use that excuse.......yet."





jamaica-prime-minister-andrew-holness-apologizes-for-inappropriate-action.jpgPrime Minster Andrew Holness has issued an apology over an 'inappropriate action' carried out on his Instagram account.

PM Holness made rounds on social media Friday after a screenshot surfaced which showed his official IG account liking a photo of a woman in a bikini uploaded to the popular media-sharing application.

The account handlers quickly unliked the images and released a statement, "An inappropriate action took place on this account today. This was done by one of our account managers," the notice read, "We have taken steps to ensure that this does not recur."





Foota Hype begs fans to help him get a new phone

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foota-hype-photo-1.jpgIs this for real?

Dancehall selector and artiste manager, Foota Hype has launched a GoFundMe account for social media users to assist in replacing his mobile device. Foota revealed over the weekend that his phone was damaged and is preventing him from during his normal Instagram live sessions.

Foota, whose given name is Oniel Thomas, launched the GoFundMe page with a target of US$1000.

"All my followers who love my [Instagram] live weh want mi get the new phone the GoFundMe up and running mek mi si if mi have real followers now," he wrote.

Foota Hype received US$120 from three donations in the first hour. He also stated in a video that he will be giving fans an address which they can ship phones to if they wish.





Hurricane Michael likely to hit Florida mid-week

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A tropical weather system that rapidly strengthened into Hurricane Michael on Monday is likely to intensify ahead of an expected strike on Florida's Panhandle by midweek, forecasters said. Michael could strengthen into a major hurricane with winds topping 111 miles per hour by Tuesday night before an expected strike on the Panhandle or Big Bend, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Since the storm will spend two to three days over the Gulf, which has very warm water temperatures and favourable atmospheric conditions, "there is a real possibility that Michael will strengthen to a major hurricane before landfall," Robbie Berg, a hurricane specialist at the Miami-based storm forecasting hub, wrote in an advisory.

Florida Governor Rick Scott issued an order for a state of emergency for 26 counties to rush preparations, freeing up resources and activating 500 members of the Florida National Guard. By mid-morning Monday, a large mound of sand in Tallahassee had been already been whittled down to a small pile as residents tried to prepare for potential flooding. A city of Tallahassee worker promised that another mound was ordered and on its way.

All indications are that it's going to be severe," said City Commissioner Gil Ziffer, adding that if the storm hits Florida's capital, there would be significant tree damage and power outages.

"Hopefully we will have no one hurt and no loss of life."

By 11 a.m. Monday, Michael's top sustained winds were around 75 miles per hour. The storm was centred about 50 miles off the western tip of Cuba, and about 140 miles east-northeast of Cozumel, Mexico.

It was moving north around seven miles per hour.





The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) is to rule whether charges are to be laid against the police corporal who was nabbed on Tuesday night, allegedly delivering firearms to gunmen in Newlands, Portmore, St Catherine. The 52 year old corporal, who is attached to the St Catherine South Police Division, was questioned for several hours Sunday in the presence of his attorney, Peter Champagnie.

A file is now being compiled for submission to the DPP.

Investigators have accused the policeman of being a member of the Umbrella Gang. He was arrested during an operation by members of the Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Branch (C-TOC). The cops intercepted his vehicle in the community of Newlands and seized an AK47 rifle, a Taurus pistol and more than 20 rounds of ammunition in his possession.

t's alleged that the policeman was delivering the guns and ammunition to members of the Umbrella Gang who are locked in a deadly feud with rival factions in Newlands.

An 18 year old boy was also arrested during the snap raid on Myers Lane.





hands-behind-bars.jpgInvestigators from the Major Investigation Division (MID) have detained the caretaker employed to the Church of God of Prophecy in Spanish Town, St Catherine, for questioning in connection with the murder of Pastor James Johnson. The caretaker was arrested Sunday during a raid at his house along Old Harbour Road in Spanish Town.

Acting Assistant Commissioner McArthur Sutherland, head of the Criminal Investigation Branch, reports that the cops went in search of the caretaker who had been eluding investigators over the last two weeks. He was found hiding in the ceiling of his house.

According to the senior investigator, the cops had been searching for the caretaker to ask him some questions about the "differing statements" he gave to investigators about the shooting death of Pastor Johnson. Investigators began preliminary questioning on Sunday, however, he is to be questioned in the presence of his attorney on Monday.

Acting ACP Sutherland declined to say whether he is a suspect.

Ballistics tests are now being conducted on the licensed firearm of the caretaker. A post mortem performed on Wednesday revealed that Pastor Johnson died after being shot in the neck and back by his assailant.

He was killed on the compound of the Church of God of Prophecy on September 23. It was reported that the 29 year old pastor was in his office at the church when he was attacked and shot. His licensed firearm was stolen.





7 years in prison for Peter Abrahams' murderer

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arrested -photo-1.jpgThe man who was last year charged for the killing of noted retired journalist and public commentator, Peter Abrahams, has been sentenced to seven years in prison for the crime.

The man - 61-year-old Norman Tomlinson - pleaded guilty to manslaughter last month, after having been charged with murder in February of last year.

Abrahams, 97, was found dead with multiple injuries at his home in Red Hill, St Andrew on January 18, 2017.

Reports were that Tomlinson, the spouse of Abrahams' household helper, visited the now deceased man and a dispute developed between the two men.

In a fit of rage, Tomlinson reportedly beat Abrahams to death.





World renowned Jamaican fashion designer Ivy Ralph passed away early this morning. She was 90 years old. Ralph, who was in Nuttall Hospital, died at approximately 3:45 am. Regarded as a pioneer of Jamaica's fashion industry, Ralph won worldwide acclaim when she created the Kareeba suit in the early 1970s.

"It was an idea I had as a child, a more comfortable style of dress for men. I wanted to help them get away from the jacket-and-tie routine, to something far more comfortably suited to the island's climate," Ralph is quoted in her biography.

Jamaica's then Prime Minister Michael Manley, the bio explained, "saw the ensemble and immediately sought out Ralph. The rest, as the saying goes, is history. It took off like wildfire, everybody wanted a Kareeba and she was busy night and day just trying to keep up with the orders, exporting to Saks Fifth Ave, B Altman, and top boutiques across the USA and the Caribbean".

The Kareeba, which was the subject of an article in the New York Times on March 24, 1976, was embraced by world leaders and celebrities, among them Barbados' Prime Minister Errol Barrow, Guyana's President Forbes Burnham, Tanzania President Julius Nyerere, the king of Swaziland, World Heavyweight Boxing Champion Muhammed Ali, and American pop star Michael Jackson in his young days. In 1999 Ralph the Jamaican Government invested Ralph with the Order of Distinction for outstanding contribution to the promotion of fashion for export.





earthquake.jpgPORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP): The US Geological Survey (USGS) says a 5.2 magnitude aftershock rattled northern Haiti, a day after a 5.9 magnitude earthquake left at least 12 dead and 188 injured at the same location. The USGS says the aftershock's epicentre was located 15.8 kilometres (9.8 miles) north-northwest of Port-de-Paix and had a depth of 10 kilometres. It struck at about 3 p.m. local time on Sunday.

"It was an aftershock. It was at the same location," said Paul Caruso, geophysicist with the USGS. "This is the first significant aftershock."

At the time, emergency teams were bringing relief to victims of Saturday's quake, which toppled cinder-block homes and rickety buildings. Authorities said at least 12 people died and 188 were injured.

The government reported seven deaths in the Nord-Ouest province and four other deaths in the community of Gros-Morne in the province of Artibonite, the newspaper Le Nouvelliste quoted Secretary of State for Communications Eddy Jackson Alexis as saying.

The US Geological Survey said the quake hit at 8:11 p.m. Saturday night and was centred 12 miles (19 kilometres) northwest of Port-de-Paix, which is about 136 miles (219 kilometres) from the capital of Port-au-Prince. The quake was 7.3 miles (11.7 kilometres) below the surface.

The country's civil-protection agency issued a statement saying several people were injured and some houses were destroyed in Port-de-Paix, Gros Morne, Chansolme and Turtle Island. Among the structures damaged was the Saint-Michel church in Plaisance.

The civil-protection agency officially confirmed the deaths of at least 10 people.

In 2010, a vastly larger magnitude 7.1 quake damaged much of the capital and killed an estimated 300,000 people.





Social media outpouring following Elva's death

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elva-ruddock.jpgThere has been a major outpouring of grief and shock on social media following the passing of Elva Ruddock, popular stand-up comedy performer and event host. Elva passed away, after battling the autoimmune disease, Lupus. Her death left the theatre and media communities on which Ruddock left her mark in shock.

Hundreds of persons have been putting up Elva's picture on their social media statuses as a way of paying tribute to the comedienne and host of the popular Full House Fridays on FAME.

Elva always showed her bubbly side and had kept the extent of her illness private. According to social media personality Marlon Campbell, Ruddock had made him aware the first time she was hospitalised during the summer, but he never had the opportunity to visit her. He had contacted her to host an event over the past week, but Ruddock's words were "Di doctor tell me to build a likkle bit."

Theatre practitioner and comedian Owen 'Blakka' Ellis said although he was aware of her diagnosis, Ruddock had chosen to not share the full details of her health and treatment with anyone within the circle. "She would not share her illness as a means to not give it the time and space. She would have only mentioned it and say: 'Mi nah talk about it'. In addition to that, she hated sympathy," he said.

Elva was raised in Rollington Town, St Andrew, before moving to Portmore, St Catherine, and is the second of four children born to Ruby and Charles Ruddock.





elva-photo-1.jpgMedia personality and comedienne Elva Ruddock died yesterday. Reports are that she had been ailing for some time with lupus and had been hospitalised.

News of her death has shocked the entertainment, media and theatre industries on which Ruddock made her mark.

"Elva was one of those persons who could easily bring sunshine on a rainy day in anyone's life. Her bubbly personality was quite infectious. Elva was one of a kind and will always be remembered for her hilarious interactions on TV and radio. She commanded our attention with her presence and she will be greatly missed by all of us," Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia Grange said in a statement.





Benefits of turmeric thyroid

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turmeric-c-ws.jpgThe endocrine system is a network of organs and the hormones they secrete which regulate body processes such as growth, metabolism, sexual function, sleep etc. The thyroid gland is one of the largest organs belonging to this system and plays an essential role. It is located in front of the throat above the collarbone with two lobes each present on either side of the windpipe.

The hormones secreted by thyroid regulate body metabolism and activity of other hormones. The principal hormones secreted by it are triiodothyronine, thyroxine and calcitonin. The first two hormones control growth and the rate at which body burns calories while calcitonin regulates calcium levels.

The thyroid gland is controlled by the pituitary, which is considered the 'master gland' of the endocrine system. 1 in 20 people suffers from a thyroid dysfunction at some stage in life. Thyroid disorders include:

Goitre: Enlargement of thyroid gland

Thyroid treatment involves taking thyroxine supplements in case of hypothyroidism and drugs to reduce activity in case of hyperthyroidism. When this line of treatment fails, part or whole gland can be removed surgically. Thyroid cancer and nodules are treated by surgical removal or radioactive iodine. Alternative medicine and naturopathy also offer remedies to these disorders.

7 Benefits of Turmeric In Thyroid disorders

Turmeric has antioxidant benefits in various thyroid disorders.

1. It is anti-inflammatory agent

Curcumin, as well as curcumin free turmeric, have natural anti-inflammatory properties. This can benefit in conditions like thyroiditis, goitre and thyroid cancer. Curcumin acts on pro-inflammatory enzymes like COX and LOX in order to control inflammation from spreading. Unlike regular NSAIDs which act only COX enzyme, curcumin acts on both the enzymes without causing any side effects like gastric and liver toxicity. Curcumin also regulates and inhibits the activity of key players in inflammation like TNF-alpha and Nuclear factor-kappa B. By acting on these proteins as well as other biochemical targets and inflammatory pathways, curcumin relieves inflammation as effectively as conventional therapy.

What does this mean?

Turmeric and curcumin help relieve inflammation naturally in various thyroid disorders.

2. It helps as an antioxidant

Curcumin and other curcuminoids in turmeric are strong antioxidants with antioxidant activity comparable to vitamin C and E. A study published in Indian Journal of Experimental Biology,2002 reveals that turmeric extract is as effective an antioxidant as vitamin E and C in hypothyroidism. In an animal study, Samanta et.al have demonstrated that turmeric and curcumin can counteract oxidative stress (imbalance between prooxidant and antioxidant agents) caused by elevated triiodothyronine levels.

What does this mean?

As antioxidants, curcumin benefit thyroid health and balance thyroid hormone levels.

3. It benefits in hyperthyroidism

Hyperthyroidism is a condition caused by elevated thyroid hormone levels. Elevated thyroid hormone levels can cause an imbalance between prooxidant and antioxidant levels in the body. Hyperthyroidism causes oxidative stress in the brain. Jena et.al have proven that curcumin can regulate the levels of antioxidant enzyme and relieve oxidative stress induced in the brain due to hyperthyroidism. Hyperthyroidism affects the levels of liver enzyme and in turn disrupts liver function. Curcumin and vitamin E combination is found to alleviate such damage and restore liver function.

Similarly, turmeric and curcumin are found to protect kidney function due to damage caused by hyperthyroidism.

What does this mean?

Curcumin and turmeric are proven to improve antioxidant defences and protect organs from damage caused by hyperthyroidism.

4. It benefits hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is when the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone. In an animal model of hypothyroidism, turmeric extract treatment is found to reduce atrophy (reduction in size) of thyroid glands and prevents reduction of thyroid hormone levels. It is also found to alleviate high levels of cholesterol caused by hypothyroidism. One study highlights that curcumin may have age-related effect on the thyroid gland. This study found that curcumin increases levels of thyroid hormones at a young age and reduces hormone levels in aged. Further studies are required to assess this finding.

What does this mean?

Turmeric helps stimulate thyroid hormone production in hypothyroidism.

5. Including turmeric in diet reduces risk of goitre

A study published in Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism investigated the role of dietary turmeric in development of goitre. In this survey, 2335 individuals were interviewed for disease history and screened for goitre. The population had an endemic goitre and high prevalence of hyperthyroidism was observed. Interestingly goitre was less common in those individuals who consumed milk, ghee, spices, chillies and turmeric.

The researchers emphasized that turmeric use was associated with reduced goitre development and recommended inclusion of turmeric in the diet in case of goitre.

What does this mean?

Dietary intake of turmeric reduces risk of developing goitre.

6. It has immunomodulatory action

Certain thyroid disorders are autoimmune condition like Graves disease and Hashimoto's disease. These are characterized by abnormal levels of thyroid hormones and can increase the risk of developing a goitre.

In autoimmune conditions, the antibodies produced to fight infection, start attacking body tissues instead paving way for inflammation and damage to various organs. Curcumin has immunomodulatory activity- it regulates immune responses. It regulates the activity of immune cells as well as cytokines (chemicals secreted by cells) that play an important role in autoimmune reactions thereby preventing them.

What does this mean?

Curcumin benefits in autoimmune conditions that affect the thyroid gland.

7. Turmeric protects from and benefits in thyroid cancer

Turmeric and curcumin are natural anti-cancer agents. (Read Turmeric for Cancer) Research suggests that curcumin may be an effective agent in inhibiting the growth of tumors and thereby aid in the treatment of thyroid cancer. Curcumin potentiates the anti-tumor and anti-cancer effect of sorafenib and docetaxel (anti-cancer drug) in treatment of thyroid cancer.

Curcumin is proven to sensitize thyroid cancer cells to the action of radioactive iodine which is used in treatment of thyroid disorders. Curcumin manipulates a number of biochemical pathways to inhibit metastasis of thyroid cancer.

What does this mean?

Curcumin can serve as anti-cancer agent in thyroid cancer and also prevents metastasis. It also sensitizes cancer therapy.

Dosage of Turmeric For Thyroid Disorders

Dietary turmeric can benefit in reducing the risk of thyroid disorders as well as benefit in treatment. A good way of taking turmeric is Golden Paste. It includes oil and black pepper to enhance absorption of turmeric and curcumin.

You can make the Golden Paste from fresh roots.

Start with ¼-1/2 tsp a day for a week and if no side effects are observed increase gradually. The recommended dose is 1-2 tsp 2-3 times a day (precisely 1 tsp 3 times a day). The ideal dose differs with every person; depends on what suits you and benefits you.

Avoid taking Golden Paste on an empty stomach and close to the time of taking medicines (Read Does turmeric cause acid reflux? Does black pepper in golden paste interact with medicines?)

Turmeric milk and Turmeric tea are other delicious options. Need help identifying a good brand of turmeric please click here.

If taking turmeric supplements consult a doctor prior.

Precaution

Dietary turmeric is very safe but a few precautions need to be considered when it comes to turmeric supplements:

Avoid during pregnancy and lactation

Avoid if suffering from gallbladder obstruction

Avoid if suffering from a bleeding disorder

Discontinue prior to surgery

If suffering from gout or at risk of developing kidney stones, limit intake of turmeric as a spice. (Is turmeric safe in gout? Does turmeric cause kidney stone?)

Avoid taking turmeric on an empty stomach to avoid acid reflux symptoms. (Does turmeric cause acid reflux?)

If suffering from a bleeding disorder, small doses of turmeric in the diet are safe but it is best to consult a doctor before taking turmeric or turmeric supplements in this case.

A general precaution is outlined that turmeric may have drug interactions with stomach acid reducing medication, antidepressants, blood sugar reducing drugs etc. Curcumin found in turmeric is known to interfere with drug metabolism.

Hence it is advised not to take curcumin supplements concomitantly with any other medicine. Consult a health practitioner before taking turmeric supplements.

Conclusion

Turmeric is rich in powerful natural antioxidants, which makes it therapeutically effective in thyroid disorders.

It can balance thyroid hormones in hyperthyroidism as well as hypothyroidism. It can help reduce inflammation and reduce the risk of goitre. Turmeric can prevent and benefit in thyroid cancer.

We highly recommend including turmeric in the diet to manage as well as prevent thyroid disorders.

(Source: https://www.turmericforhealth.com/turmeric-benefits/can-turmeric-help-in-thyroid-disorders)





Prayer of Jabez

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Prayer of Jabez: What is it?

The Prayer of Jabez comes from the Bible. In 1 Chronicles 4:10, we read: "And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that Thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that Thine hand might be with me, and that Thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested." The prayer is composed of four parts. First, Jabez asks God to bless him. Second, he asks God to enlarge his territory or increase his responsibility. Third, he prays that God will be with him and stay close. Lastly, Jabez asks that God keep him from harm so that he will be free from pain.

Prayer of Jabez: Why is it important?

The Prayer of Jabez reveals that Jabez understands what many people do not -- there is only one God and He should be the center of our work God wants to bless every life. But, we must first make the choice to invite God into our life and ask for His blessings. Jabez wants to succeed and increase his sphere of influence for God. The specific sphere of influence is not important. What is important is that when we want to reach for goals and accomplishments that we have God on our side. Proverbs 16:3 says, "Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established." It is critical to understand and practice this in a close relationship with God. Further, it is equally important to stay close to God and rely on His continued support and guidance throughout life. Jabez clearly knows and prays specifically to the One who can protect him from evil and pain -- God. At the end of the verse it is clear that God approved of this faithful prayer by granting it. It is also important to see that Jabez was passionate in his plea to God: "He cried out to the God of Israel." God wants to hear that we need Him through passionate prayer.

Prayer of Jabez: What does it mean to you?

The Prayer of Jabez reminds us that everybody struggles with choosing to rely on himself or God. Whether you are a focused Christian or just searching to find out more about God, life is a growing process. However, it is very clear in reviewing the Prayer of Jabez, as well as the rest of the Bible, that God is faithful in caring for those who seek Him. Jabez sets a great example of how God wants everyone to come to Him through constant and passionate prayer. If you are looking to start a relationship with God or improve your existing relationship with Him, start with prayer. God answers prayers when you trust Him (1 Chronicles 5:20). Prayers to God also please Him (Proverbs 15:8). We can all learn from Jabez and faithfully pray to God always in everything that we do.

Prayer of Jabez: The Book by Bruce Wilkinson

The Prayer of Jabez is covered in phenomenal detail by Bruce Wilkinson in his book of the same name. We highly encourage you to read this fantastic and inspiring resource, that challenges each of us to:

"Attempt something large enough that failure is guaranteed...unless God steps in!"

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

We have all sinned and deserve God's judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, "Jesus is Lord," you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.





Comedian Mike Epps to make his Jamaica debut

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American comedian Mike Epps is scheduled to make his Jamaican debut at Outburst Stand-Up Comedy Series on October 27. The event is slated to unfold at the National Arena in Kingston at 8:00 pm.

Khalil Shirley, an executive at Hyperlinks Limited -- event organisers -- said the occasion will mark the first in a series of shows to be staged across the Caribbean.

"We're starting in Jamaica and then basically touring with Mike to other Caribbean countries like Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago before we return here," Shirley told the Jamaica Observer. "Based on each rotation, we should be doing two shows annually in Jamaica. Hopefully, when we return it'll be with a Chris Rock or Katt Williams.

Shirley said it was another American comedic, Cedric the Entertainer, who paved the way for Epps's debut.

"What happened was we initially had Cedric in mind, but he started shooting a show that would conflict the scheduled date so he got us on to Mike and did the negotiations for us."

Epps is known for his roles in movies like Next Friday, Friday After Next, Meet the Blacks and The Fighting Temptations. He has also appeared in the Netflix specials Don't Take It Personal (2015) and Underrated & Never Faded (2009).

New York-based social media comedian Majah Hype, who recently performed in Jamaica, is also on the bill. Four local acts including Dufton Shepherd and Leighton Smith are also set to perform.





beres-hammond-photo-2.jpgBeres Hammond and VP Records are hoping for greater success with Never Ending, his latest album, which is due for release on October 12.

"We're very excited to be releasing the Beres album. I believe it could be one of his best records yet," Christopher Chin, CEO of VP Records, said in a media release.

Never Ending follows a successful tour of the United States by Hammond, who turned 63 in August. So far two singles from the set have been issued: I'm Alive and Land of Sunshine. The album features 14 songs, mainly about love and social issues. Willie Lindo, Kirk Bennett, Handel Tucker, Errol "Flabba Holt" Carter, Leroy and David Heywood aka "Mafia & Fluxy", Winston "Bo Pee" Bowen, Dean Fraser, and Robbie Lyn are some of the producers and musicians who worked on the project.

Never Ending is Hammond's first album since the double-disc One Love, One Life, which was released in November 2012. That set debuted at number one on the Billboard Reggae Album Chart and, according to Nielsen Music, for which tracks sales in the United States sold 10,986 copies.

Hammond, who began his career in the early 1970s, recorded with the Zap Pow Band before going solo and working with guitarist/producer Lindo on ballads like One Step Ahead and I Miss You. In the 1990s he was signed to Elektra Records, which released his major label debut album In Control.

That album featured the hit single No Disturb Sign, which was popular on reggae charts in the US but failed to crack major Billboard charts. In Control, however, peaked at number seven on the Billboard Reggae Album Chart.





New EP from Munga Honorebel

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munga.jpgControversial 'Bad From Me Born' deejay, Munga Honorebel is back with a new EP........or possible a new album......three years after the release of 'Excuse Me'.

The EP is tentatively scheduled for release at year-end.

Among the producers working on the project are Anju Blaxx, JJ Wizzle, Portmore Society, Jr Bloodline, and Hilltop Records. According to him, the EP will represent his talent and showcase his growth as an artiste.

"Expect Munga Honorable with various styles, sounds and presentations," he said.

Born Damion Rhoden, Munga is from Islington, St Mary. He entered the Red Label Wine Superstar Competition in 1997. Four years later, he began touring with dancehall act Capleton.





A police corporal and a teenager were arrested in Newlands, Portmore, St. Catherine Tuesday night.

The 52 year-old corporal and the 18 year-old boy were held with two illegal firearms, including an AK 47 rifle and a quantity of ammunition during a snap raid in Myers Lane.

The policeman is suspected to be a member of the Umbrella Gang which operates in Newlands. Superintendent Leighton Grey, head of Operations for the St. Catherine South Police, said about 8:30 p.m. his division was contacted by the Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Division (C-TOC) for assistance.

They intercepted a motor car which was being driven by the policeman. When the vehicle was searched, an AK 47 rifle with the serial number obscured, a magazine containing fifteen rounds of ammunition and a Taurus nine millimetre pistol were found.

The policeman's licensed firearm was also seized.

A pair of licence plates was reportedly found in the trunk of the car.

A man suspected to be the intended recipient of the guns escaped. He reportedly goes by the alias Terror Blacks. The policeman and the teenager are to be questioned by detectives from C-TOC.

The Police High Commmand has ordered a top level investigation into the suspected link between the police corporal and the criminal gang.

While the cops were arresting the police corporal and teen, heavy gunfire broke out in sections of Newlands. Members of the Umbrella gang reportedly invaded a section of the community and this led to a gun battle.

A man was arrested and placed under police guard Wednesday morning when he turned up at Kingston Public Hospital with a bullet wound to his mouth. C-TOC investigators say he is a member of the Umbrella gang.

There has been a flare-up of gang violence in Newlands since last weekend.Superintendent Grey said the friction between two gangs was triggered by a robbery.





The Bog Walk Gorge in St Catherine has been re-opened following reports that is was closed.

The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management says it made the decision to close the gorge for public safety reasons as rainfall continues in the hilly sections of St Catherine causing water levels in the Rio Cobre to rise.

In the meantime, the Barry route is now impassable.

Motorists are being urged to use alternative routes through Sligoville or the North-South Highway.

People are also urged to avoid flooded waterways such as fords, gullies, streams and rivers.

Despite the gorge being re-opened, motorists are advised to proceed with the usual caution.





Jamaica and France to sign air service agreement

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Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett recently departed the island for Paris, to finalise air service arrangements, which will result in the development of direct flights from Montego Bay to France.

"I am very excited to announce that Jamaica is going to be increasing connectivity with France. The Director of Tourism and I will be meeting with Air France/KLM and French Tourism Investors, to tie up an arrangement that will certainly benefit our country," said Minister Bartlett.

The discussion initially took place during a courtesy call by outgoing French Ambassador to Jamaica, Jean-Michel Despax to the Minister's New Kingston office.

During this meeting, a decision was also made for the Minister's delegation to visit officials such as the Jamaican Ambassador to France and a new marketing company.

"We are being invited to meet in France with the Minister of State for Foreign Trade, the Promotion of Tourism and French Nationals Abroad, Hon. Matthias Fekl, the French Aviation Authority, Air France and a number of investors who now have an interest in a Tourism Product in Jamaica. One of these investors is Sofitel [a chain of luxury hotels based in Paris, France, and owned by AccorHotels]," said the Minister.

According to data from the Jamaica Tourist Board, stopover arrivals from France in 2017 saw a 40.2% increase in arrivals, with 7400 visitors to the island. However, arrivals have not been consistent over the past seven years. The island had its peak in 2014 with 12,087 stopover visitors.

"We truly believe the arrivals from the French market will not only stabilise but see a significant increase once we improve the connectivity. There is a deep interest in our culture, food and music from French Nationals and of course our Jamaicans living in France. We will no doubt have to improve our marketing in this region, but I look forward to welcoming more French tourists once we have finalised this deal," said the Minister.





arrested -photo-1.jpgFour men are now behind bars after a cache of firearms, including an Uzi sub-machine gun, and more than 600 rounds of ammunition were found in a barrel at the wharf in Kingston yesterday. The police say two of the men were arrested at the wharf while the others were apprehended in secondary operations.

Law enforcement sources say the Uzi sub-machine gun, along with nine pistols, 26 magazines and the bullets were stashed in a barrel that also contained food items. The barrel was shipped from the state of Georgia in the United States and listed the recipient as a man in the Kingston 6 area, police sources revealed.

According to reports, detectives from the Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime Division (C-TOC) conducted a snap operation at Berth 7 at the Kingston Container Terminal where the barrel was scanned and "anomalies" discovered.

The weapons were found during a subsequent search.

Ammunition found

243 - 9mm bullets

100 - 5.56 bullets

100 - 7.62 bullets

130 - .40 bullets

50 - .45 bullets

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Popular female promoter from NY killed in Jamaica

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crime-scene-gun.jpgPopular dancer and female promoter who hails from Anchovy District in St. James, but resided in New York, USA, was shot and killed by gunmen in Anchovy, on Saturday, September 29, and her male companion shot and wounded.

She has been identified as Judith Annabell Miller-Warren, known to all as "Cocky Tractor". She was a popular dancehall promoter locally and abroad.

Reports by the Freeport police are that about 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Miller-Warren who recently arrived in the island, and a male companion, was travelling in a Nissan motor car in Anchovy community.

On reaching a section of the area known as Nigger Ground, they were ambushed by a group of armed men, who opened fire on the vehicle.

Miller-Warren and her male companion received multiple gunshot wounds to their upper bodies and are believed to have been robbed by their assailants.

The police were summoned and upon arrival, both victims were transported to the Cornwall Regional Hospital, where Miller-Warren was pronounced dead and the male admitted in critical condition.

Immediately following the news of her murder, a host of tributes started to roll out for Miller-Warren via social media.

"Cocky Tractor" as she was fondly called is remembered by her brilliant moves on the dance floor.

Just a few years ago, Miller-Warren now turn promoter entered the popular Dancehall Queen Contest and performed exceptionally well.





crime-scene-tape-gloves.jpgPolice Commissioner Major General Antony Anderson has condemned the killing of District Constable Mellissa Edwards-Whyte, who was assigned to Crime Stop.

Edwards-Whyte was fatally chopped during a domestic dispute at her home about 9:00 last night.

In expressing his condolences, the police chief said: "It is unfortunate that domestic violence has robbed us of another promising talent, Woman District Constable Mellissa Edwards-Whyte was met with such cruelty and callousness and no effort will be spared in bringing closure to this matter."

The Chaplaincy and Community Safety and Security Branch (CSSB) have been instructed to provide all the necessary support to colleagues and friends of the late district constable.

Members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) are also being reminded to use the resources available to the force, such as the Chaplaincy and Medical Services Branch, to assist them deal with domestic and other issues that impact their emotional, psychological and physical well-being.

In the meantime, police personnel are being encouraged to remain vigilant and undaunted as they continue to enforce law and order and build safer communities.





Alleged rapist hotel worker in police custody

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custody.jpgA Riu Hotel trainee worker who allegedly raped two female guests at gunpoint in their room on Thursday night is now in police custody.

Based on preliminary investigations, the police have identified the gunman as Demar Scott. However, there is uncertainty about where he is from as the police have found two identification cards for him, giving two different addresses. One ID card says he is from Exchange district in Ocho Rios, St Ann while the other says he is from Comfort district in Williamsfield, Manchester.

The 23-year-old suspect was held by police on Friday afternoon. In a statement, the hotel said the man had been in training for only three days before allegedly committing the dastardly act.

"Last (Thursday) night, September 27th, there was a very unfortunate incident in the Riu Reggae Hotel in which two guests were attacked by a trainee at the entertainment department of the hotel. The man, who had been in training for only three days, was able to escape," Riu said.

"The hotel management immediately called the police and accompanied and supported the guests with everything in this difficult moment," the hotel added.

The release did not reveal much details, citing protection of the guests' privacy.

"We are unable to share further details both for the protection of our clients privacy as well as to not interfere in the investigation being already carried out by the local authorities," the short statement read.

Police report that about 11pm, the gunman entered a room being occupied by two female guests at the prominent hotel through a balcony door.

The man then reportedly held up both women at gunpoint and forcibly had sexual intercourse with them, before being disarmed by one of the victims who opened fire at the suspect.

The suspect was reportedly shot in the upper body but still managed to escape through the balcony door. He remained on the lam for more than 12 hours before he was reportedly collared by cops in a central Jamaica parish early Friday afternoon





2000 pounds of ganja seized in Manchester

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ganja-seized.jpgThe Narcotics Division of the Jamaica Constabulary Force say they have placed a dent in the illicit ganja trade with the seizure of over 2,000 pounds of compressed ganja in Manchester on Friday.

Reports are that between 11:30 a.m., and 1:00 p.m. the police searched sections of the bushes along the coast line in Gutts River in the Alligator Pond area of Manchester, where several packages of marijuana were found.

No one was arrested. Members of the Narcotics Division are investigating.

The find follows Thursday's seizure of about 1300 pounds of compressed ganja in St Elizabeth.

Reports are that about about 8:00 p.m., members of the JDF Coast Guard were on patrol when they intercepted a vessel in the vicinity of Fort Charles Beach, Treasure Beach in St Elizabeth with three men aboard.

A search of the vessel revealed several packages of compressed ganja, weighing about 1300 pounds.

The men were taken into custody and the drug seized.





crime-scene-gun.jpgThe festering crime problem that has been plaguing St James jolted the tourism sector on Thursday night when a gunman barged into a hotel room in Montego Bay and raped two female tourists before he lost possession of his weapon and was shot by one of the visitors. After he was shot, the gunman allegedly jumped over a balcony and fled. The weapon, which was reportedly stolen from the room of another guest, was turned over to the police.

"Based on our initial investigations, the gunman was employed to the hotel two days ago as an entertainment coordinator, so it was not someone who walked in off the street," a police officer told The Gleaner. "The gun he had in his possession was stolen from the room of another guest, who is a licensed firearm holder."

According to police reports, at approximately 11:15 p.m., the two visitors, who are from Detroit in the United States, were in their room at the Riu Reggae Hotel in Ironshore, Montego Bay, when a man, who was armed with a handgun, walked in on them. With gun in hand, the man demanded that they perform various sexual acts on him.

While he was raping one woman, the gun reportedly fell from his hand. The other woman picked up the weapon and pointed it at him. He tried to disarm the woman, who fired two shots at him. He ran out of the room, jumped a balcony and fled. The police, who were summoned to the property, found blood stains below the balcony.

"We believe he was shot either once or twice, based on the amount of blood below the balcony and on the ground leading into bushes off the hotel's compound," said a police officer. "We will be carrying out further searches to see if we find him."

Based on preliminary investigations, the police have identified the gunman as Demar Scott. However, there is uncertainty about where he is from as the police have found two identification cards for him, giving two different addresses. One ID card says he is from Exchange district in Ocho Rios, St Ann while the other says he is from Comfort district in Williamsfield, Manchester.

"When we went to the location, one of the women handed over a 9mm Glock 17 pistol with serial number DTN201," said a police officer. "It was loaded with 16 live rounds of ammunition."

Confirming the incident in a statement, the management of RIU said: "Last night, September 27, there was a very unfortunate incident in the Riu Reggae Hotel in which two guests were attacked by a trainee at the entertainment department of the hotel. The man, who had been in training for only three days, was able to escape. The hotel management immediately called the police and accompanied and supported the guests with everything in this difficult moment. We are unable to share further details, both for the protection of our clients' privacy, as well as to not interfere in the investigation being already carried out by the local authorities."

Some six hours after the Riu incident, another Montego Bay hotel was also dragged into the news. At about 5:45 a.m. on Friday, the police, acting on information, went to the Hotel Gloriana on Sunset Boulevard in Montego Bay, where five men were arrested and two illegal firearms seized. The men were wanted in connection with a recent shooting in Spring Mount, also in St James.





ganja-seized.jpgThe narcotics police arrested and charged a man and woman, for breaches of the Dangerous Drugs Act on Thursday, October 11. They are 19-year-old Kaydian Sheppy of Kingston and 22-year-old Osborne Rowe, a labourer of Spanish Town in St. Catherine.

Sheppy and Rowe are jointly charged with possession of ganja, dealing in ganja, taking steps preparatory to export ganja, and conspiracy.

Reports are that about 11:30 a.m., Sheppy checked in to board a flight destined to the eastern Caribbean when her luggage was searched. Police say six and a half pounds of compressed ganja was found in a false compartment.

Sheppy was taken into custody and on further investigations, Rowe who gave the suitcase to Sheppy was also taken into custody.

The drug has an estimated street value of $26,000.

They are scheduled to appear in the Corporate Area parish court on Wednesday, October 17.





Nine alleged members of the Westmoreland based King's Valley gang, which includes two females, have been transferred to Kingston, following a joint police/military operation in Westmoreland on Wednesday. The operation was carried-out in King's Valley and Peggy Barry district in Grange Hill, Westmoreland.

Head of the Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime Investigation Branch (CTOC) Assistant Commissioner, Fitz Bailey, says the operation was conducted to curb murders in the area.

ACP Bailey says members of the King's Valley gang are wanted for various criminal activities in Westmoreland. The Assistant Commissioner says, a motor vehicle and a Taurus pistol are among items seized during the operation.

ACP Bailey has vowed to bring to justice, all other members of the king's valley gang.





Minister Bartlett orders Security Audit of Hotels

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ministry-of-tourism.jpgKINGSTON, Jamaica; October 14, 2018: Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett has ordered an intensive security audit of the tourism sector including hotels and attractions as part of efforts to strengthen destination assurance.

"I've directed the Tourism Product Development Company, which is in charge of maintaining quality assurance within the destination, to coordinate an intensive security audit of the sector so as to identify gaps and ensure that the destination remains safe, secure and seamless for visitors and locals alike. Security arrangements are part of the licensing requirements for many sector operators, so we will apply tough sanctions where breaches and or significant weaknesses are found. " said Minister Bartlett.

The Tourism Working Group established recently by Bartlett to conduct a comprehensive review of issues in the sector, and headed by PriceWaterhouseCoopers Senior Partner, Wilfred Baghaloo will also be a part of the process.

The Tourism Development Product Company, (TPDCo), through its various departments, works closely with all operators of tourism- related facilities promoting the attributes of a quality product, monitoring same and engaging the relevant authorities in a continuous effort to satisfy consumer demand and expectations. The company adopts, sets and promotes standards, guidelines and checklists for the industry in order to attain global competitiveness.

Minister Bartlett added that, "Security remains a top priority of my Ministry as this is an integral component to maintaining destination assurance. We are committed to ensuring that all visitors and locals feel safe."

The TPDCo will over the next couple of weeks review security protocols and issues across the sector and provide recommendations where needed. Tough actions where needed will follow.





MEXICO BEACH, Florida (AP): The small Gulf Coast community of Mexico Beach was known as a slice of Old Florida. Now it lies in splinters.Hit head-on by Hurricane Michael, homes in this town of about 1,190 people were shattered or ripped from their foundations. Boats were tossed like toys. The streets closest to the water looked as if a bomb had gone off. What the nine-foot storm surge didn't destroy, the 155mph (250 kph) winds finished off.

Now, rescuers and residents are struggling to get into the ground-zero town to assess the damage and search for the hundreds of people believed to have stayed behind.

Mishelle McPherson and her ex-husband looked for the elderly mother of a friend yesterday. The woman lived in a small cinderblock house about 150 yards from the Gulf and thought she would be OK.Her home was reduced to crumbled cinderblocks and pieces of floor tile.

"Aggy! Aggy!" McPherson yelled. The only sound that came back was the echo from the half-demolished building and the pounding of the surf.

"Do you think her body would be here? Do you think it would have floated away?" she asked.

As she walked down the street, McPherson pointed out pieces of what had been the woman's house: "That's the blade from her ceiling fan. That's her floor tile."

Drone footage of Mexico Beach on Thursday morning showed a stunning landscape of devastation. Few structures were unscathed. John Humphress, a storm chaser and drone pilot, arrived in Mexico Beach around 5 p.m. Wednesday, a few hours after Michael slammed into the coastline. He had one word to describe what he saw: "Apocalyptic."

State officials said 285 people in Mexico Beach had refused to leave ahead of the hurricane despite a mandatory evacuation order. A National Guard team went into the area and found 20 survivors overnight, and more crews were pushing into the area on Thursday. The fate of many other residents was unknown, authorities said.





Vanessa Bling hits Billboard

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vanessa-bling-addi.jpgDancehall artiste Vanessa Bling is rejoicing this week as her 'Still Standing' EP has made its Billboard Reggae Chart debut. Released on September 18, the six-track EP features the lead singles '10 Bags' and 'Freedom' which have been making the rounds on various radio stations locally and internationally.

Currently signed to Atlanta-based Outtaspace Entertainment and managed by En-Treeg Records, the Future Guaranteed artiste learned on Tuesday that her third EP debuted at number nine on the famed chart, earning the Hot Shot Debut Award.

"This is an amazing feeling," Bling said. "I always believed that this was where I belonged, and I am thankful for my label, my management and my entire team for believing in me as well.".

This is the first time the artiste has charted on Billboard, but she believes that she is destined for better.

"The work my team and I have been putting in is no joke. Believe me when I tell you, this is just the beginning," Bling said.

Still Standing isn't Vanessa Bling's first attempt at charting with an album. As Gaza Slim, she released Adidjaheim Records Presents: Introducing Vanessa Bling As Gaza Slim in 2011 which featured Vybz Kartel. Her second EP, Girl Boss, came out in 2012.

VANESSA BLING/.PSALM:35 on Instagram: "Lord I thank you 🙏Thanks to my amazing team and my fans for the love and support 🙏let's go #number1 #stillstandingEp @billboard #debut9..."





g-whizz.jpgSince fellow entertainer Popcaan posted a clip of the incident in which G Whizz chucked off into a not-crwded show and fell flat on his face on his Instagram page, the post has taken on life of its own with a multitude of persons commenting and reposting it.

However, G Whizz said that the Unruly Boss went further than just uploading the video.

"Big up Popcaan cause him post it and it go viral. Him actually message me after, and I was invited to his upcoming show in December in St Thomas," he said.

With another performance scheduled for tomorrow in Brown's Town, St Ann, he said he could not promise that he would not try the stunt again.

"I really don't know what to expect because sometime when yuh performing and the vibes a di whole show, things just happen. Same like how mi neva wake up and say mi a go jump off a di stage a Portmore today," he said.

For now G Whizz is looking forward to Unruly Fest scheduled for December 22.

876GUD on Instagram: "Him dead?😂😂"

Vezi această postare pe Instagram

Him dead?😂😂

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g-whizz.jpgEntertainer G Whizz has gone viral after a clip of him diving into fans and falling flat on his face while performing at the Release College Tour at the Portmore Community College last Monday. He sprang into the air to dive into the arms of some females who were enjoying his performance, but instead of them catching him, as he had hoped, the girls all gave him enough space to fall like a ripe breadfruit off a tree.

The "Life Soon Sort Out" singer slammed into the ground, but fortunately he says he only received a few cuts and bruises. Persons are wondering why G Whizz would have chucked off like that because there was really no crowd to catch him. In an interview with Jamaican tabloid, the Star, G Whizz is reported as saying that he was motivated by the response that he was getting from singing his hit song, he explained that he was trying to take his performance to a higher level by springing into the air, soaring like a bird for a few seconds before landing on his hands, which prevented him from suffering more severe injuries.

"The show was just full of vibes, and mi just deh deh a sing, and di crowd a sing wid mi. Di way the show get nice, mi just decide fi dweet," he told The Star.

"Before I jumped, I leaned into the crowd a couple times and the girls dem ketch mi. It was just fun, but people nuh see all a dat (his performance), dem see di drop," G Whizz added.

Now that a clip of the incident has been going viral, he said that rather than feeling embarrassed, he is laughing just as much as everybody else is.

"I was laughing when I fell, and now that it out and it gone viral and people a laugh, I am laughing too," he said.

Pointing out that it is all entertainment, G Whizz said that this is not the first time he has had a mishap while performing.

"One time when I was on stage and I was performing in Canada, my pants buss out and mi underpants a show. I was in the middle of mi show, and mi haffi continue sing. The people there were laughing too, but dem enjoy the show same way too. So a just entertainment, it come wid some spontaneous moments," he told THE STAR.





krystal-tomlinson.jpgDancehall artiste, Beenie Man and girlfriend Krystal Tomlinson have reportedly welcomed their first child together.

According to sources close to the two, Tomlinson gave birth in the last 24 hours.

Unconfirmed reports also indicate that the child, said to be a girl, is on the incubator at a prominent medical facility as the baby was a bit early.

Back in July Tomlinson announced her pregnancy for the veteran entertainer after several years of dating.

This is the first child for Tomlinson and the 12th for Beenie Man, whose real name is Moses Davis.





The teenage student from Lacovia High School in St Elizabeth who had a fight with her mother in front of the school is now missing from home. According to the police, attempts to locate the girl at her home and her relatives' houses have so far been futile.

"The girl apparently ran away from home ... at this point, we could soon be putting out a missing person report for the child," a police insider said.

The video of the tussle between the child and her mother has been circulating online. The three-minute video clip shows the girl, who is in school uniform, is seen fighting her mother at the front of Lacovia High while being jeered by a group of students looking on. During the tussle, both the Lacovia High girl and her mother fell to the ground.

The video has triggered mixed reaction from Jamaicans. Some people criticise the woman apparently going to her daughter's school to beat the child, while others say the girl was out of order for fighting her mother.





charged.jpgA teen who was taken into police custody on Sunday, following accusations that he killed his 72-year-old step-grandfather and buried him in a shallow grave has been slapped with a murder charge.

The Constant Spring police today reported that the teen, 19-year-old Sahmar Graham, will be facing the court at a date to be announced for the death of Errol Seabourne, a farmer of Burnside Hill, Red Hills in St Andrew.

Seabourne was reportedly last seen on Friday morning, when relatives who had been preparing for the funeral of another family member said it was unlike him to not show up at the "set-up" and the funeral on Saturday.

On Sunday, when one of his nieces went to Seabourne's house to make checks, she was told by Graham, who was living with him, that he had not seen him since Tuesday.

The niece detected a foul odour and raised an alarm. Residents conducted a further search that led them to an area where they saw fresh soil and the dead man's hand protruding from the dirt.





grupo-aeroportuario-del-pacifico.jpg

grupo-aeroportuario-del-pacifico-will-operate-the-norman-manley-airport-in-2019.jpgKINGSTON, Jamaica, Oct. 10, 2018 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ -- The most honorable Andrew Holness, Prime Minister of Jamaica hosted the Norman Manley International Airport Public-Private Partnership Execution of the Concession Agreement to Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico (GAP).

GAP is a Mexican corporation that operates thirteen international airports in large metropolitan areas, industrial centers, and world-class leisure destinations of Mexico and Jamaica. In the last 18 years, the Group has invested over $1.2 billion US Dollars in the airports, positioning itself as one of the fastest growing airport groups of its size in the world. During 2017, the airports of the Group managed 40.7 million of passengers.

In April 2015, Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico assumed operational control of Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, investing over 191 million US Dollars to acquire a 74.5% stake in this airport. This was the largest investment of the Group outside Mexico.

GAP has developed a culture committed to customer service. One of the main objectives of the Group once it takes control of the operations of the Norman Manley International Airport next year, will be to improve the infrastructure and equipment to fulfill passengers' needs.

Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico, manages airports based on establishing strong partnerships with the airport owner, the passengers, the airlines, business developers, members in the air transportation industry and notably, with the local authorities.

"We will collaborate with the government of Jamaica in identifying tourism development opportunities and possible investors from Mexico; as well as explore potential growth for new resorts, tourism facilities and time-share business in parts of the country where the connectivity provided by the airport could be a catalyst", mentioned Raul Revuelta, Chief Executive Officer of the Group during the ceremony in which participated Hon. Robert Montague, Minister of Transport & Mining.

Grupo Aeroportuario del Pacifico, S.A.B. de C.V. (GAP) is a Mexican company that operates 13 international airports in the Pacific and Central Regions of Mexico and in the Caribbean:

  • Guadalajara and Tijuana, serving the main metropolitan areas.
  • Mexicali, Hermosillo, Los Mochis, Aguascalientes, Guanajuato and Morelia, serving mid-sized and developing cities.
  • La Paz, Los Cabos, Puerto Vallarta, Manzanillo and Montego Bay, serving some of the leading tourist destinations.

In Mexico, the airports are owned by the Mexican government and were assigned 50-year concessions as part of a national initiative to privatize and improve the quality and safety of the country's airport services. In the last 18 years, GAP has invested over $1.2 billion USD in the airports. During 2017, the airports of the Group managed 40.7 million passengers.

In April 2015, GAP assumed operational control of the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay.





Sizzla to headline Chase The Cure concert

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sizzla-photo-4.jpgReggae star Sizzla will headline Chase The Cure Cancer Awareness and Benefit show next Sunday, October 14, at Turtle River Park, Ocho Rios, St Ann. The show, presented by Kloude9ine Entertainment, will also feature Tommy Lee Sparta, Macka Diamond, Lybran and Spotlight and will see the Jamaica Cancer Society benefiting with proceeds from the event.

Organiser Melvin Wright said the event came about because of experiences that family members have had with cancer.

"I'm doing this event because in late 2017 my younger sister found out that she had some cancerous abnormalities with her ovaries, and this was confirmed by four independent doctors. My sister had to schedule an emergency appointment for surgery to remove her ovaries," Wright is quoted in The Gleaner.

"Second, I currently have an uncle in Pennsylvania that is waiting to die from cancer, as not so long ago he was given less than one year to live and his health is rapidly declining," he added.

Wright, who hails from Warsop in Trelawny, has been contributing to his community in recent years. This includes donating 15 blood pressure machines, laser thermometers, chainsaws, coffee machines and other items to entities in the parish, such as medical centres and police stations.





sean-paul-photo-8.jpgSean Paul gives financial assistance to relocation of welding plant

Grammy award winning artiste, Sean Paul, having made a call for a welding plant located near the National Stadium pool, to be relocated due to the possible health hazard it presents has offered to to provide the financial assistance to the relevant authorities to complete the move.

"I am passionate about Jamaica's athletes and the energies they put into representing our country. I am also conscious of potential health and safety risks for everyone who chooses to use the facility. Not only swimmers, but netball and basketball athletes, parents, coaches, lifeguards, vendors and all staff of the stadium are equally negatively affected as they are all in close proximity to the plant. In light of this, I am petitioning for permanent removal of the welding site from the pool area to a more conducive place on the stadium grounds with very little hindrance to the workflow that, I understand, is necessary for the welding plant," he said.

Sean Paul further noted that following his recent comments on social media regarding the air pollution resulting from the welding site in close proximity to the National Stadium swimming pool, he very appreciative of the swift response by Major Desmond Brown, the general manager of Independence Park Limited -- the outfit that manages the stadium complex includes the pool.

Sean Paul is a former national waterpolo player.





Jimmy Cliff cancels shows after breaking hip

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jimmy-cliff-photo-1.jpgDr. Jimmy Cliff was forced to cancel his upcoming tour after he injured himself during a fall.

Reports are that Dr. Cliff was hospitalized after breaking his hip last month. Latifa, the wife of the legendary entertainer tells Music News that Jimmy Cliff is recovering well.

Jimmy Cliff has postponed all his shows for the month of October. His Management has apologized for the inconvenience via social media platforms.

It is not clear as to when the legendary entertainer will resume touring.





ganja-image-5.jpgDELTA, British Columbia (AP) -- Mat Beren and his friends used to drive by the vast greenhouses of southern British Columbia and joke about how much weed they could grow there. Years later, it's no joke. The tomato and pepper plants that once filled some of those greenhouses have been replaced with a new cash crop: marijuana.

Beren and other formerly illicit growers are helping cultivate it.

The buyers no longer are unlawful dealers or dubious medical dispensaries; it's the Canadian government. On October 17, Canada becomes the second and largest country with a legal national marijuana marketplace. Uruguay launched legal sales last year, after several years of planning. It's a profound social shift promised by Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and fuelled by a desire to bring the black market into a regulated, taxed system after nearly a century of prohibition.

It also stands in contrast to the United States, where the federal government outlaws marijuana while most states allow medical or recreational use for people 21 and older. Canada's national approach has allowed for unfettered industry banking, inter-province shipments of cannabis, online ordering, postal delivery and billions of dollars in investment; national prohibition in the U.S. has stifled greater industry expansion there.

Hannah Hetzer, who tracks international marijuana policy for the New York-based Drug Policy Alliance, called Canada's move "extremely significant," given that about 25 countries have already legalised the medical use of marijuana or decriminalised possession of small amounts of the drug.

A few, including Mexico, have expressed an interest in regulating recreational use.

At least 109 legal pot shops are expected to open across the nation of 37 million people next Wednesday, with many more to come, according to an Associated Press survey of the provinces. For now, they'll offer dried flower, capsules, tinctures and seeds, with sales of marijuana-infused foods and concentrates expected to begin next year.





Police have launched an investigation into a physical altercation between a mother and her daughter at the front of a prominent high school in St Elizabeth.

The incident was captured on video and circulated online.

In the three-minute footage, the woman is seen fighting the girl, who is in school uniform, at the front of the educational institution while being jeered by a group of students looking on.

The tussle escalates to the point where both parties fall to the ground.

Police sources from St Elizabeth say that the law enforcement officials have since reached out to the two and are investigating the matter. According to the police insiders, personnel from the victim support unit have also gotten involved.





The community of Grange Hill in Westmoreland is now under heavy police-military security. Residents woke up this morning to find the community blanketed by soldiers and police with helicopters flying overhead.

"I have never seen anything like this in Grange Hill," said Errol Stewart, the principal of the Grange Hill High School.

"They have everything... dogs, metal detectors...you name it."

Grange Hill is currently the epicenter of the violence in Westmoreland. It has two major gangs fighting for the spoils of lottery scamming.

Earlier this year, seven murders were recorded in one night of extreme violence.





crime-scene-tape-gloves.jpgVeteran jockey, Vassel Najair died Monday from injuries sustained nearly two weeks ago at Caymanas Park. Najair was struck by getaway horse PERFECT ASSET on Wednesday, September 26, prior to the start of the seventh event. The incident occurred after three five-year-old mares bolted from the starting gate and ran onto a narrow walkway leading from the grandstand area to the winners' enclosure.

Najair suffered head injuries while trying to block the runaway horse and was rushed to the Spanish Town Hospital.

Michael Bernard, executive chairman of Supreme Ventures Racing and Entertainment Limited (SVREL), expressed his sorrow at Najair's passing.

"Both myself, as a horseman, and SVREL, regret the untimely loss of Najair. He was a very enthusiastic and dedicated member of the racing fraternity and, most recently, up to early September, an employee of SVREL," Bernard said.

Najair started riding July 29, 1967, and won a double on his first day in the saddle, partnering Gold Spoon to victory in the third race. He returned to land the ninth with Chantrelle. Najair recorded his last winner on August 7, 2017, aboard Peter McMaster's Ras Emanuel, taking his tally to 278 winners from 2,756 rides.





riu-hotel-rapist.jpgDetectives attached to the St James Criminal Investigations Branch have charged the entertainment coordinator who allegedly raped two female visitors at the RIU hotel in Montego Bay, St James.

Twenty-four-year-old Demar Dowe Scott, otherwise called 'Ninja', of Comfort district in Manchester, is charged with illegal possession of firearm, two counts of assault with intent to rob, two counts of rape, and two counts of grievous sexual assault.

He is scheduled to appear before the St James Parish Court on Wednesday.

Reports are that about 11:15 p.m on Thursday, September 27, Scott forcibly entered the hotel room of the two American women, brandished a firearm before sexually assaulting them.

It is further reported that one of the women disarmed him and shot him before he escaped.

Following investigations, Scott was arrested and subsequently charged.





Colin Powell slams Donald Trump on CNN

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donald-trump-photo-1.jpgFormer Secretary of State Colin Powell on Sunday slammed President Donald Trump, saying the United States has became 'me the president' instead of 'we the people.'

'My favorite three words in our Constitution is the first three words - 'We the People.' 'We the People.' But recently it's become 'me the president,' as opposed to 'We the People.' And you see things that should not be happening,' he said on CNN's 'Fareed Zakaria GPS.'

He also said he sees no way Trump can be a moral leader on the world stage.

'I don't know that he can do that because right now, that is not the way he is acting,' Powell said.

Powell, who head the State Department under President George W. Bush, was harshly critical of Trump's immigration policies, his treatment of the press, and the way he insults people. He challenged Trump's 'Make America Great Again' slogan, arguing the United States has always been great.

'We are great now. We always have been great,' he said. 'And so I think what we really have to do is to start changing our mode of dealing with the rest of the world and try to get a system where we are calming down, stop insulting everybody, and see if we cannot reach out.'

Powell also criticized Trump's attacks on media, who the president has dubbed the 'fake media' and 'the enemy of the press.'

'How can a president of the United States get up and say that the media is the enemy of Americans? Hasn't he read the First Amendment? You're not supposed to like everything the press says or what anyone says in the First Amendment,' Powell said.

The retired Army general also blasted the way Trump insults people.

'And I hope the president can come to the realization that he should really stop insulting people. And I used this two years ago when I said I could not vote for him in the 2016 election -- and why? He insulted everybody,' Powell said.

Trump's insults date back to the beginning of his 2016 presidential campaign, where he derided 'Crooked' Hillary Clinton and he has added on from there. He called his former FBI director 'lying' James Comey, labeled lawmaker Maxine Waters as 'crazy,' and called North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un 'rocket man.'

Powell also had strong words from Trump's 'zero tolerance' immigration policy that separated children from their families.





pope-francis.jpgThe Roman Catholic Church has recently been hit by one sexual abuse scandal after another, from Germany, to the United States, to Chile. At the same time, a deepening polarisation between conservatives and liberals in the Church has played out on social media. So the pope has now blamed the devil, but social media users are poinitng out that it must have been the "Devils in white robes" who are to be blamed

Francis' use of the term 'the great accuser' to describe Satan hit a raw nerve with one of the pope's harshest conservative critics, Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, the Vatican's former ambassador to Washington.

In an 11-page statement published on August 26, Viganò launched an unprecedented broadside by a Church insider against the pope and a long list of Vatican and US Church officials. He accused Francis of knowing about sexual misconduct by a former US cardinal with male adult seminarians but not doing anything about it. Viganò, concluding that his former boss had singled him out as the devil in disguise, complained in his next statement that Francis 'compared me to the great accuser, Satan, who sows scandal and division in the Church, though without ever uttering my name'.

On Sunday, a top Vatican official issued a scathing open letter accusing Viganò of mounting a 'political frame job devoid of real foundation' and contesting his accusations against the pope point by point.

Francis is so convinced that Satan is ultimately to blame for both the sexual abuse scandals and the divisions within the Church that he has enlisted the aid of St Michael the Archangel. Michael is mentioned several times in the Bible as the leader of the angels who ousted Lucifer, the fallen angel, from paradise. Catholics are being asked to recite the rosary daily in October and conclude it with a prayer to St Michael that was said after Mass until 1964 but then fell into disuse. The prayer reads: 'St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle. Be our defence against the wickedness and snares of the devil. May God rebuke him, we humbly pray, and do thou, O Prince of heavenly hosts, by the power of God, thrust into hell Satan, and all evil spirits, who prowl about the world seeking the ruin of people.

But social media is reacting by calling all of the Pope's antic "hogwash".

"Yes, apparently Popeye doesn't believe in free will or people's ability to resist doing evil? While people might be tempted to do evil acts, they certainly have the freedom to not give in to whatever temptation. And so evil is freely committed - no one HAS to do any terrible act!"

"Well, you don't expect him to blame the men, do you? Heaven forbid!!!!"

"Yeah, Devils in White robes".

"I'm surprised it took this long to come up with that rubbish"

"A prime example of the State of Rome passing the buck yet again"

"Nice try Pope, but you're not going to dismiss the reprehensible things your employees are doing, by blaming it on the devil. Hillary didn't even use that excuse.......yet."





jamaica-prime-minister-andrew-holness-apologizes-for-inappropriate-action.jpgPrime Minster Andrew Holness has issued an apology over an 'inappropriate action' carried out on his Instagram account.

PM Holness made rounds on social media Friday after a screenshot surfaced which showed his official IG account liking a photo of a woman in a bikini uploaded to the popular media-sharing application.

The account handlers quickly unliked the images and released a statement, "An inappropriate action took place on this account today. This was done by one of our account managers," the notice read, "We have taken steps to ensure that this does not recur."





Foota Hype begs fans to help him get a new phone

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foota-hype-photo-1.jpgIs this for real?

Dancehall selector and artiste manager, Foota Hype has launched a GoFundMe account for social media users to assist in replacing his mobile device. Foota revealed over the weekend that his phone was damaged and is preventing him from during his normal Instagram live sessions.

Foota, whose given name is Oniel Thomas, launched the GoFundMe page with a target of US$1000.

"All my followers who love my [Instagram] live weh want mi get the new phone the GoFundMe up and running mek mi si if mi have real followers now," he wrote.

Foota Hype received US$120 from three donations in the first hour. He also stated in a video that he will be giving fans an address which they can ship phones to if they wish.





Hurricane Michael likely to hit Florida mid-week

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A tropical weather system that rapidly strengthened into Hurricane Michael on Monday is likely to intensify ahead of an expected strike on Florida's Panhandle by midweek, forecasters said. Michael could strengthen into a major hurricane with winds topping 111 miles per hour by Tuesday night before an expected strike on the Panhandle or Big Bend, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Since the storm will spend two to three days over the Gulf, which has very warm water temperatures and favourable atmospheric conditions, "there is a real possibility that Michael will strengthen to a major hurricane before landfall," Robbie Berg, a hurricane specialist at the Miami-based storm forecasting hub, wrote in an advisory.

Florida Governor Rick Scott issued an order for a state of emergency for 26 counties to rush preparations, freeing up resources and activating 500 members of the Florida National Guard. By mid-morning Monday, a large mound of sand in Tallahassee had been already been whittled down to a small pile as residents tried to prepare for potential flooding. A city of Tallahassee worker promised that another mound was ordered and on its way.

All indications are that it's going to be severe," said City Commissioner Gil Ziffer, adding that if the storm hits Florida's capital, there would be significant tree damage and power outages.

"Hopefully we will have no one hurt and no loss of life."

By 11 a.m. Monday, Michael's top sustained winds were around 75 miles per hour. The storm was centred about 50 miles off the western tip of Cuba, and about 140 miles east-northeast of Cozumel, Mexico.

It was moving north around seven miles per hour.





The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) is to rule whether charges are to be laid against the police corporal who was nabbed on Tuesday night, allegedly delivering firearms to gunmen in Newlands, Portmore, St Catherine. The 52 year old corporal, who is attached to the St Catherine South Police Division, was questioned for several hours Sunday in the presence of his attorney, Peter Champagnie.

A file is now being compiled for submission to the DPP.

Investigators have accused the policeman of being a member of the Umbrella Gang. He was arrested during an operation by members of the Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Branch (C-TOC). The cops intercepted his vehicle in the community of Newlands and seized an AK47 rifle, a Taurus pistol and more than 20 rounds of ammunition in his possession.

t's alleged that the policeman was delivering the guns and ammunition to members of the Umbrella Gang who are locked in a deadly feud with rival factions in Newlands.

An 18 year old boy was also arrested during the snap raid on Myers Lane.





hands-behind-bars.jpgInvestigators from the Major Investigation Division (MID) have detained the caretaker employed to the Church of God of Prophecy in Spanish Town, St Catherine, for questioning in connection with the murder of Pastor James Johnson. The caretaker was arrested Sunday during a raid at his house along Old Harbour Road in Spanish Town.

Acting Assistant Commissioner McArthur Sutherland, head of the Criminal Investigation Branch, reports that the cops went in search of the caretaker who had been eluding investigators over the last two weeks. He was found hiding in the ceiling of his house.

According to the senior investigator, the cops had been searching for the caretaker to ask him some questions about the "differing statements" he gave to investigators about the shooting death of Pastor Johnson. Investigators began preliminary questioning on Sunday, however, he is to be questioned in the presence of his attorney on Monday.

Acting ACP Sutherland declined to say whether he is a suspect.

Ballistics tests are now being conducted on the licensed firearm of the caretaker. A post mortem performed on Wednesday revealed that Pastor Johnson died after being shot in the neck and back by his assailant.

He was killed on the compound of the Church of God of Prophecy on September 23. It was reported that the 29 year old pastor was in his office at the church when he was attacked and shot. His licensed firearm was stolen.





7 years in prison for Peter Abrahams' murderer

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arrested -photo-1.jpgThe man who was last year charged for the killing of noted retired journalist and public commentator, Peter Abrahams, has been sentenced to seven years in prison for the crime.

The man - 61-year-old Norman Tomlinson - pleaded guilty to manslaughter last month, after having been charged with murder in February of last year.

Abrahams, 97, was found dead with multiple injuries at his home in Red Hill, St Andrew on January 18, 2017.

Reports were that Tomlinson, the spouse of Abrahams' household helper, visited the now deceased man and a dispute developed between the two men.

In a fit of rage, Tomlinson reportedly beat Abrahams to death.





World renowned Jamaican fashion designer Ivy Ralph passed away early this morning. She was 90 years old. Ralph, who was in Nuttall Hospital, died at approximately 3:45 am. Regarded as a pioneer of Jamaica's fashion industry, Ralph won worldwide acclaim when she created the Kareeba suit in the early 1970s.

"It was an idea I had as a child, a more comfortable style of dress for men. I wanted to help them get away from the jacket-and-tie routine, to something far more comfortably suited to the island's climate," Ralph is quoted in her biography.

Jamaica's then Prime Minister Michael Manley, the bio explained, "saw the ensemble and immediately sought out Ralph. The rest, as the saying goes, is history. It took off like wildfire, everybody wanted a Kareeba and she was busy night and day just trying to keep up with the orders, exporting to Saks Fifth Ave, B Altman, and top boutiques across the USA and the Caribbean".

The Kareeba, which was the subject of an article in the New York Times on March 24, 1976, was embraced by world leaders and celebrities, among them Barbados' Prime Minister Errol Barrow, Guyana's President Forbes Burnham, Tanzania President Julius Nyerere, the king of Swaziland, World Heavyweight Boxing Champion Muhammed Ali, and American pop star Michael Jackson in his young days. In 1999 Ralph the Jamaican Government invested Ralph with the Order of Distinction for outstanding contribution to the promotion of fashion for export.





earthquake.jpgPORT-AU-PRINCE, Haiti (AP): The US Geological Survey (USGS) says a 5.2 magnitude aftershock rattled northern Haiti, a day after a 5.9 magnitude earthquake left at least 12 dead and 188 injured at the same location. The USGS says the aftershock's epicentre was located 15.8 kilometres (9.8 miles) north-northwest of Port-de-Paix and had a depth of 10 kilometres. It struck at about 3 p.m. local time on Sunday.

"It was an aftershock. It was at the same location," said Paul Caruso, geophysicist with the USGS. "This is the first significant aftershock."

At the time, emergency teams were bringing relief to victims of Saturday's quake, which toppled cinder-block homes and rickety buildings. Authorities said at least 12 people died and 188 were injured.

The government reported seven deaths in the Nord-Ouest province and four other deaths in the community of Gros-Morne in the province of Artibonite, the newspaper Le Nouvelliste quoted Secretary of State for Communications Eddy Jackson Alexis as saying.

The US Geological Survey said the quake hit at 8:11 p.m. Saturday night and was centred 12 miles (19 kilometres) northwest of Port-de-Paix, which is about 136 miles (219 kilometres) from the capital of Port-au-Prince. The quake was 7.3 miles (11.7 kilometres) below the surface.

The country's civil-protection agency issued a statement saying several people were injured and some houses were destroyed in Port-de-Paix, Gros Morne, Chansolme and Turtle Island. Among the structures damaged was the Saint-Michel church in Plaisance.

The civil-protection agency officially confirmed the deaths of at least 10 people.

In 2010, a vastly larger magnitude 7.1 quake damaged much of the capital and killed an estimated 300,000 people.





Social media outpouring following Elva's death

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elva-ruddock.jpgThere has been a major outpouring of grief and shock on social media following the passing of Elva Ruddock, popular stand-up comedy performer and event host. Elva passed away, after battling the autoimmune disease, Lupus. Her death left the theatre and media communities on which Ruddock left her mark in shock.

Hundreds of persons have been putting up Elva's picture on their social media statuses as a way of paying tribute to the comedienne and host of the popular Full House Fridays on FAME.

Elva always showed her bubbly side and had kept the extent of her illness private. According to social media personality Marlon Campbell, Ruddock had made him aware the first time she was hospitalised during the summer, but he never had the opportunity to visit her. He had contacted her to host an event over the past week, but Ruddock's words were "Di doctor tell me to build a likkle bit."

Theatre practitioner and comedian Owen 'Blakka' Ellis said although he was aware of her diagnosis, Ruddock had chosen to not share the full details of her health and treatment with anyone within the circle. "She would not share her illness as a means to not give it the time and space. She would have only mentioned it and say: 'Mi nah talk about it'. In addition to that, she hated sympathy," he said.

Elva was raised in Rollington Town, St Andrew, before moving to Portmore, St Catherine, and is the second of four children born to Ruby and Charles Ruddock.





elva-photo-1.jpgMedia personality and comedienne Elva Ruddock died yesterday. Reports are that she had been ailing for some time with lupus and had been hospitalised.

News of her death has shocked the entertainment, media and theatre industries on which Ruddock made her mark.

"Elva was one of those persons who could easily bring sunshine on a rainy day in anyone's life. Her bubbly personality was quite infectious. Elva was one of a kind and will always be remembered for her hilarious interactions on TV and radio. She commanded our attention with her presence and she will be greatly missed by all of us," Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport Olivia Grange said in a statement.





Benefits of turmeric thyroid

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turmeric-c-ws.jpgThe endocrine system is a network of organs and the hormones they secrete which regulate body processes such as growth, metabolism, sexual function, sleep etc. The thyroid gland is one of the largest organs belonging to this system and plays an essential role. It is located in front of the throat above the collarbone with two lobes each present on either side of the windpipe.

The hormones secreted by thyroid regulate body metabolism and activity of other hormones. The principal hormones secreted by it are triiodothyronine, thyroxine and calcitonin. The first two hormones control growth and the rate at which body burns calories while calcitonin regulates calcium levels.

The thyroid gland is controlled by the pituitary, which is considered the 'master gland' of the endocrine system. 1 in 20 people suffers from a thyroid dysfunction at some stage in life. Thyroid disorders include:

Goitre: Enlargement of thyroid gland

Thyroid treatment involves taking thyroxine supplements in case of hypothyroidism and drugs to reduce activity in case of hyperthyroidism. When this line of treatment fails, part or whole gland can be removed surgically. Thyroid cancer and nodules are treated by surgical removal or radioactive iodine. Alternative medicine and naturopathy also offer remedies to these disorders.

7 Benefits of Turmeric In Thyroid disorders

Turmeric has antioxidant benefits in various thyroid disorders.

1. It is anti-inflammatory agent

Curcumin, as well as curcumin free turmeric, have natural anti-inflammatory properties. This can benefit in conditions like thyroiditis, goitre and thyroid cancer. Curcumin acts on pro-inflammatory enzymes like COX and LOX in order to control inflammation from spreading. Unlike regular NSAIDs which act only COX enzyme, curcumin acts on both the enzymes without causing any side effects like gastric and liver toxicity. Curcumin also regulates and inhibits the activity of key players in inflammation like TNF-alpha and Nuclear factor-kappa B. By acting on these proteins as well as other biochemical targets and inflammatory pathways, curcumin relieves inflammation as effectively as conventional therapy.

What does this mean?

Turmeric and curcumin help relieve inflammation naturally in various thyroid disorders.

2. It helps as an antioxidant

Curcumin and other curcuminoids in turmeric are strong antioxidants with antioxidant activity comparable to vitamin C and E. A study published in Indian Journal of Experimental Biology,2002 reveals that turmeric extract is as effective an antioxidant as vitamin E and C in hypothyroidism. In an animal study, Samanta et.al have demonstrated that turmeric and curcumin can counteract oxidative stress (imbalance between prooxidant and antioxidant agents) caused by elevated triiodothyronine levels.

What does this mean?

As antioxidants, curcumin benefit thyroid health and balance thyroid hormone levels.

3. It benefits in hyperthyroidism

Hyperthyroidism is a condition caused by elevated thyroid hormone levels. Elevated thyroid hormone levels can cause an imbalance between prooxidant and antioxidant levels in the body. Hyperthyroidism causes oxidative stress in the brain. Jena et.al have proven that curcumin can regulate the levels of antioxidant enzyme and relieve oxidative stress induced in the brain due to hyperthyroidism. Hyperthyroidism affects the levels of liver enzyme and in turn disrupts liver function. Curcumin and vitamin E combination is found to alleviate such damage and restore liver function.

Similarly, turmeric and curcumin are found to protect kidney function due to damage caused by hyperthyroidism.

What does this mean?

Curcumin and turmeric are proven to improve antioxidant defences and protect organs from damage caused by hyperthyroidism.

4. It benefits hypothyroidism

Hypothyroidism is when the thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone. In an animal model of hypothyroidism, turmeric extract treatment is found to reduce atrophy (reduction in size) of thyroid glands and prevents reduction of thyroid hormone levels. It is also found to alleviate high levels of cholesterol caused by hypothyroidism. One study highlights that curcumin may have age-related effect on the thyroid gland. This study found that curcumin increases levels of thyroid hormones at a young age and reduces hormone levels in aged. Further studies are required to assess this finding.

What does this mean?

Turmeric helps stimulate thyroid hormone production in hypothyroidism.

5. Including turmeric in diet reduces risk of goitre

A study published in Indian Journal of Endocrinology and Metabolism investigated the role of dietary turmeric in development of goitre. In this survey, 2335 individuals were interviewed for disease history and screened for goitre. The population had an endemic goitre and high prevalence of hyperthyroidism was observed. Interestingly goitre was less common in those individuals who consumed milk, ghee, spices, chillies and turmeric.

The researchers emphasized that turmeric use was associated with reduced goitre development and recommended inclusion of turmeric in the diet in case of goitre.

What does this mean?

Dietary intake of turmeric reduces risk of developing goitre.

6. It has immunomodulatory action

Certain thyroid disorders are autoimmune condition like Graves disease and Hashimoto's disease. These are characterized by abnormal levels of thyroid hormones and can increase the risk of developing a goitre.

In autoimmune conditions, the antibodies produced to fight infection, start attacking body tissues instead paving way for inflammation and damage to various organs. Curcumin has immunomodulatory activity- it regulates immune responses. It regulates the activity of immune cells as well as cytokines (chemicals secreted by cells) that play an important role in autoimmune reactions thereby preventing them.

What does this mean?

Curcumin benefits in autoimmune conditions that affect the thyroid gland.

7. Turmeric protects from and benefits in thyroid cancer

Turmeric and curcumin are natural anti-cancer agents. (Read Turmeric for Cancer) Research suggests that curcumin may be an effective agent in inhibiting the growth of tumors and thereby aid in the treatment of thyroid cancer. Curcumin potentiates the anti-tumor and anti-cancer effect of sorafenib and docetaxel (anti-cancer drug) in treatment of thyroid cancer.

Curcumin is proven to sensitize thyroid cancer cells to the action of radioactive iodine which is used in treatment of thyroid disorders. Curcumin manipulates a number of biochemical pathways to inhibit metastasis of thyroid cancer.

What does this mean?

Curcumin can serve as anti-cancer agent in thyroid cancer and also prevents metastasis. It also sensitizes cancer therapy.

Dosage of Turmeric For Thyroid Disorders

Dietary turmeric can benefit in reducing the risk of thyroid disorders as well as benefit in treatment. A good way of taking turmeric is Golden Paste. It includes oil and black pepper to enhance absorption of turmeric and curcumin.

You can make the Golden Paste from fresh roots.

Start with ¼-1/2 tsp a day for a week and if no side effects are observed increase gradually. The recommended dose is 1-2 tsp 2-3 times a day (precisely 1 tsp 3 times a day). The ideal dose differs with every person; depends on what suits you and benefits you.

Avoid taking Golden Paste on an empty stomach and close to the time of taking medicines (Read Does turmeric cause acid reflux? Does black pepper in golden paste interact with medicines?)

Turmeric milk and Turmeric tea are other delicious options. Need help identifying a good brand of turmeric please click here.

If taking turmeric supplements consult a doctor prior.

Precaution

Dietary turmeric is very safe but a few precautions need to be considered when it comes to turmeric supplements:

Avoid during pregnancy and lactation

Avoid if suffering from gallbladder obstruction

Avoid if suffering from a bleeding disorder

Discontinue prior to surgery

If suffering from gout or at risk of developing kidney stones, limit intake of turmeric as a spice. (Is turmeric safe in gout? Does turmeric cause kidney stone?)

Avoid taking turmeric on an empty stomach to avoid acid reflux symptoms. (Does turmeric cause acid reflux?)

If suffering from a bleeding disorder, small doses of turmeric in the diet are safe but it is best to consult a doctor before taking turmeric or turmeric supplements in this case.

A general precaution is outlined that turmeric may have drug interactions with stomach acid reducing medication, antidepressants, blood sugar reducing drugs etc. Curcumin found in turmeric is known to interfere with drug metabolism.

Hence it is advised not to take curcumin supplements concomitantly with any other medicine. Consult a health practitioner before taking turmeric supplements.

Conclusion

Turmeric is rich in powerful natural antioxidants, which makes it therapeutically effective in thyroid disorders.

It can balance thyroid hormones in hyperthyroidism as well as hypothyroidism. It can help reduce inflammation and reduce the risk of goitre. Turmeric can prevent and benefit in thyroid cancer.

We highly recommend including turmeric in the diet to manage as well as prevent thyroid disorders.

(Source: https://www.turmericforhealth.com/turmeric-benefits/can-turmeric-help-in-thyroid-disorders)





Prayer of Jabez

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Prayer of Jabez: What is it?

The Prayer of Jabez comes from the Bible. In 1 Chronicles 4:10, we read: "And Jabez called on the God of Israel, saying, Oh that Thou wouldest bless me indeed, and enlarge my coast, and that Thine hand might be with me, and that Thou wouldest keep me from evil, that it may not grieve me! And God granted him that which he requested." The prayer is composed of four parts. First, Jabez asks God to bless him. Second, he asks God to enlarge his territory or increase his responsibility. Third, he prays that God will be with him and stay close. Lastly, Jabez asks that God keep him from harm so that he will be free from pain.

Prayer of Jabez: Why is it important?

The Prayer of Jabez reveals that Jabez understands what many people do not -- there is only one God and He should be the center of our work God wants to bless every life. But, we must first make the choice to invite God into our life and ask for His blessings. Jabez wants to succeed and increase his sphere of influence for God. The specific sphere of influence is not important. What is important is that when we want to reach for goals and accomplishments that we have God on our side. Proverbs 16:3 says, "Commit thy works unto the LORD, and thy thoughts shall be established." It is critical to understand and practice this in a close relationship with God. Further, it is equally important to stay close to God and rely on His continued support and guidance throughout life. Jabez clearly knows and prays specifically to the One who can protect him from evil and pain -- God. At the end of the verse it is clear that God approved of this faithful prayer by granting it. It is also important to see that Jabez was passionate in his plea to God: "He cried out to the God of Israel." God wants to hear that we need Him through passionate prayer.

Prayer of Jabez: What does it mean to you?

The Prayer of Jabez reminds us that everybody struggles with choosing to rely on himself or God. Whether you are a focused Christian or just searching to find out more about God, life is a growing process. However, it is very clear in reviewing the Prayer of Jabez, as well as the rest of the Bible, that God is faithful in caring for those who seek Him. Jabez sets a great example of how God wants everyone to come to Him through constant and passionate prayer. If you are looking to start a relationship with God or improve your existing relationship with Him, start with prayer. God answers prayers when you trust Him (1 Chronicles 5:20). Prayers to God also please Him (Proverbs 15:8). We can all learn from Jabez and faithfully pray to God always in everything that we do.

Prayer of Jabez: The Book by Bruce Wilkinson

The Prayer of Jabez is covered in phenomenal detail by Bruce Wilkinson in his book of the same name. We highly encourage you to read this fantastic and inspiring resource, that challenges each of us to:

"Attempt something large enough that failure is guaranteed...unless God steps in!"

WHAT DO YOU THINK?

We have all sinned and deserve God's judgment. God, the Father, sent His only Son to satisfy that judgment for those who believe in Him. Jesus, the creator and eternal Son of God, who lived a sinless life, loves us so much that He died for our sins, taking the punishment that we deserve, was buried, and rose from the dead according to the Bible. If you truly believe and trust this in your heart, receiving Jesus alone as your Savior, declaring, "Jesus is Lord," you will be saved from judgment and spend eternity with God in heaven.





Comedian Mike Epps to make his Jamaica debut

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American comedian Mike Epps is scheduled to make his Jamaican debut at Outburst Stand-Up Comedy Series on October 27. The event is slated to unfold at the National Arena in Kingston at 8:00 pm.

Khalil Shirley, an executive at Hyperlinks Limited -- event organisers -- said the occasion will mark the first in a series of shows to be staged across the Caribbean.

"We're starting in Jamaica and then basically touring with Mike to other Caribbean countries like Barbados and Trinidad and Tobago before we return here," Shirley told the Jamaica Observer. "Based on each rotation, we should be doing two shows annually in Jamaica. Hopefully, when we return it'll be with a Chris Rock or Katt Williams.

Shirley said it was another American comedic, Cedric the Entertainer, who paved the way for Epps's debut.

"What happened was we initially had Cedric in mind, but he started shooting a show that would conflict the scheduled date so he got us on to Mike and did the negotiations for us."

Epps is known for his roles in movies like Next Friday, Friday After Next, Meet the Blacks and The Fighting Temptations. He has also appeared in the Netflix specials Don't Take It Personal (2015) and Underrated & Never Faded (2009).

New York-based social media comedian Majah Hype, who recently performed in Jamaica, is also on the bill. Four local acts including Dufton Shepherd and Leighton Smith are also set to perform.





beres-hammond-photo-2.jpgBeres Hammond and VP Records are hoping for greater success with Never Ending, his latest album, which is due for release on October 12.

"We're very excited to be releasing the Beres album. I believe it could be one of his best records yet," Christopher Chin, CEO of VP Records, said in a media release.

Never Ending follows a successful tour of the United States by Hammond, who turned 63 in August. So far two singles from the set have been issued: I'm Alive and Land of Sunshine. The album features 14 songs, mainly about love and social issues. Willie Lindo, Kirk Bennett, Handel Tucker, Errol "Flabba Holt" Carter, Leroy and David Heywood aka "Mafia & Fluxy", Winston "Bo Pee" Bowen, Dean Fraser, and Robbie Lyn are some of the producers and musicians who worked on the project.

Never Ending is Hammond's first album since the double-disc One Love, One Life, which was released in November 2012. That set debuted at number one on the Billboard Reggae Album Chart and, according to Nielsen Music, for which tracks sales in the United States sold 10,986 copies.

Hammond, who began his career in the early 1970s, recorded with the Zap Pow Band before going solo and working with guitarist/producer Lindo on ballads like One Step Ahead and I Miss You. In the 1990s he was signed to Elektra Records, which released his major label debut album In Control.

That album featured the hit single No Disturb Sign, which was popular on reggae charts in the US but failed to crack major Billboard charts. In Control, however, peaked at number seven on the Billboard Reggae Album Chart.





New EP from Munga Honorebel

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munga.jpgControversial 'Bad From Me Born' deejay, Munga Honorebel is back with a new EP........or possible a new album......three years after the release of 'Excuse Me'.

The EP is tentatively scheduled for release at year-end.

Among the producers working on the project are Anju Blaxx, JJ Wizzle, Portmore Society, Jr Bloodline, and Hilltop Records. According to him, the EP will represent his talent and showcase his growth as an artiste.

"Expect Munga Honorable with various styles, sounds and presentations," he said.

Born Damion Rhoden, Munga is from Islington, St Mary. He entered the Red Label Wine Superstar Competition in 1997. Four years later, he began touring with dancehall act Capleton.





A police corporal and a teenager were arrested in Newlands, Portmore, St. Catherine Tuesday night.

The 52 year-old corporal and the 18 year-old boy were held with two illegal firearms, including an AK 47 rifle and a quantity of ammunition during a snap raid in Myers Lane.

The policeman is suspected to be a member of the Umbrella Gang which operates in Newlands. Superintendent Leighton Grey, head of Operations for the St. Catherine South Police, said about 8:30 p.m. his division was contacted by the Counter-Terrorism and Organised Crime Division (C-TOC) for assistance.

They intercepted a motor car which was being driven by the policeman. When the vehicle was searched, an AK 47 rifle with the serial number obscured, a magazine containing fifteen rounds of ammunition and a Taurus nine millimetre pistol were found.

The policeman's licensed firearm was also seized.

A pair of licence plates was reportedly found in the trunk of the car.

A man suspected to be the intended recipient of the guns escaped. He reportedly goes by the alias Terror Blacks. The policeman and the teenager are to be questioned by detectives from C-TOC.

The Police High Commmand has ordered a top level investigation into the suspected link between the police corporal and the criminal gang.

While the cops were arresting the police corporal and teen, heavy gunfire broke out in sections of Newlands. Members of the Umbrella gang reportedly invaded a section of the community and this led to a gun battle.

A man was arrested and placed under police guard Wednesday morning when he turned up at Kingston Public Hospital with a bullet wound to his mouth. C-TOC investigators say he is a member of the Umbrella gang.

There has been a flare-up of gang violence in Newlands since last weekend.Superintendent Grey said the friction between two gangs was triggered by a robbery.





The Bog Walk Gorge in St Catherine has been re-opened following reports that is was closed.

The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management says it made the decision to close the gorge for public safety reasons as rainfall continues in the hilly sections of St Catherine causing water levels in the Rio Cobre to rise.

In the meantime, the Barry route is now impassable.

Motorists are being urged to use alternative routes through Sligoville or the North-South Highway.

People are also urged to avoid flooded waterways such as fords, gullies, streams and rivers.

Despite the gorge being re-opened, motorists are advised to proceed with the usual caution.





Jamaica and France to sign air service agreement

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Tourism Minister, Edmund Bartlett recently departed the island for Paris, to finalise air service arrangements, which will result in the development of direct flights from Montego Bay to France.

"I am very excited to announce that Jamaica is going to be increasing connectivity with France. The Director of Tourism and I will be meeting with Air France/KLM and French Tourism Investors, to tie up an arrangement that will certainly benefit our country," said Minister Bartlett.

The discussion initially took place during a courtesy call by outgoing French Ambassador to Jamaica, Jean-Michel Despax to the Minister's New Kingston office.

During this meeting, a decision was also made for the Minister's delegation to visit officials such as the Jamaican Ambassador to France and a new marketing company.

"We are being invited to meet in France with the Minister of State for Foreign Trade, the Promotion of Tourism and French Nationals Abroad, Hon. Matthias Fekl, the French Aviation Authority, Air France and a number of investors who now have an interest in a Tourism Product in Jamaica. One of these investors is Sofitel [a chain of luxury hotels based in Paris, France, and owned by AccorHotels]," said the Minister.

According to data from the Jamaica Tourist Board, stopover arrivals from France in 2017 saw a 40.2% increase in arrivals, with 7400 visitors to the island. However, arrivals have not been consistent over the past seven years. The island had its peak in 2014 with 12,087 stopover visitors.

"We truly believe the arrivals from the French market will not only stabilise but see a significant increase once we improve the connectivity. There is a deep interest in our culture, food and music from French Nationals and of course our Jamaicans living in France. We will no doubt have to improve our marketing in this region, but I look forward to welcoming more French tourists once we have finalised this deal," said the Minister.





arrested -photo-1.jpgFour men are now behind bars after a cache of firearms, including an Uzi sub-machine gun, and more than 600 rounds of ammunition were found in a barrel at the wharf in Kingston yesterday. The police say two of the men were arrested at the wharf while the others were apprehended in secondary operations.

Law enforcement sources say the Uzi sub-machine gun, along with nine pistols, 26 magazines and the bullets were stashed in a barrel that also contained food items. The barrel was shipped from the state of Georgia in the United States and listed the recipient as a man in the Kingston 6 area, police sources revealed.

According to reports, detectives from the Counter Terrorism and Organised Crime Division (C-TOC) conducted a snap operation at Berth 7 at the Kingston Container Terminal where the barrel was scanned and "anomalies" discovered.

The weapons were found during a subsequent search.

Ammunition found

243 - 9mm bullets

100 - 5.56 bullets

100 - 7.62 bullets

130 - .40 bullets

50 - .45 bullets

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Popular female promoter from NY killed in Jamaica

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crime-scene-gun.jpgPopular dancer and female promoter who hails from Anchovy District in St. James, but resided in New York, USA, was shot and killed by gunmen in Anchovy, on Saturday, September 29, and her male companion shot and wounded.

She has been identified as Judith Annabell Miller-Warren, known to all as "Cocky Tractor". She was a popular dancehall promoter locally and abroad.

Reports by the Freeport police are that about 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Miller-Warren who recently arrived in the island, and a male companion, was travelling in a Nissan motor car in Anchovy community.

On reaching a section of the area known as Nigger Ground, they were ambushed by a group of armed men, who opened fire on the vehicle.

Miller-Warren and her male companion received multiple gunshot wounds to their upper bodies and are believed to have been robbed by their assailants.

The police were summoned and upon arrival, both victims were transported to the Cornwall Regional Hospital, where Miller-Warren was pronounced dead and the male admitted in critical condition.

Immediately following the news of her murder, a host of tributes started to roll out for Miller-Warren via social media.

"Cocky Tractor" as she was fondly called is remembered by her brilliant moves on the dance floor.

Just a few years ago, Miller-Warren now turn promoter entered the popular Dancehall Queen Contest and performed exceptionally well.





crime-scene-tape-gloves.jpgPolice Commissioner Major General Antony Anderson has condemned the killing of District Constable Mellissa Edwards-Whyte, who was assigned to Crime Stop.

Edwards-Whyte was fatally chopped during a domestic dispute at her home about 9:00 last night.

In expressing his condolences, the police chief said: "It is unfortunate that domestic violence has robbed us of another promising talent, Woman District Constable Mellissa Edwards-Whyte was met with such cruelty and callousness and no effort will be spared in bringing closure to this matter."

The Chaplaincy and Community Safety and Security Branch (CSSB) have been instructed to provide all the necessary support to colleagues and friends of the late district constable.

Members of the Jamaica Constabulary Force (JCF) are also being reminded to use the resources available to the force, such as the Chaplaincy and Medical Services Branch, to assist them deal with domestic and other issues that impact their emotional, psychological and physical well-being.

In the meantime, police personnel are being encouraged to remain vigilant and undaunted as they continue to enforce law and order and build safer communities.





Alleged rapist hotel worker in police custody

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custody.jpgA Riu Hotel trainee worker who allegedly raped two female guests at gunpoint in their room on Thursday night is now in police custody.

Based on preliminary investigations, the police have identified the gunman as Demar Scott. However, there is uncertainty about where he is from as the police have found two identification cards for him, giving two different addresses. One ID card says he is from Exchange district in Ocho Rios, St Ann while the other says he is from Comfort district in Williamsfield, Manchester.

The 23-year-old suspect was held by police on Friday afternoon. In a statement, the hotel said the man had been in training for only three days before allegedly committing the dastardly act.

"Last (Thursday) night, September 27th, there was a very unfortunate incident in the Riu Reggae Hotel in which two guests were attacked by a trainee at the entertainment department of the hotel. The man, who had been in training for only three days, was able to escape," Riu said.

"The hotel management immediately called the police and accompanied and supported the guests with everything in this difficult moment," the hotel added.

The release did not reveal much details, citing protection of the guests' privacy.

"We are unable to share further details both for the protection of our clients privacy as well as to not interfere in the investigation being already carried out by the local authorities," the short statement read.

Police report that about 11pm, the gunman entered a room being occupied by two female guests at the prominent hotel through a balcony door.

The man then reportedly held up both women at gunpoint and forcibly had sexual intercourse with them, before being disarmed by one of the victims who opened fire at the suspect.

The suspect was reportedly shot in the upper body but still managed to escape through the balcony door. He remained on the lam for more than 12 hours before he was reportedly collared by cops in a central Jamaica parish early Friday afternoon





2000 pounds of ganja seized in Manchester

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ganja-seized.jpgThe Narcotics Division of the Jamaica Constabulary Force say they have placed a dent in the illicit ganja trade with the seizure of over 2,000 pounds of compressed ganja in Manchester on Friday.

Reports are that between 11:30 a.m., and 1:00 p.m. the police searched sections of the bushes along the coast line in Gutts River in the Alligator Pond area of Manchester, where several packages of marijuana were found.

No one was arrested. Members of the Narcotics Division are investigating.

The find follows Thursday's seizure of about 1300 pounds of compressed ganja in St Elizabeth.

Reports are that about about 8:00 p.m., members of the JDF Coast Guard were on patrol when they intercepted a vessel in the vicinity of Fort Charles Beach, Treasure Beach in St Elizabeth with three men aboard.

A search of the vessel revealed several packages of compressed ganja, weighing about 1300 pounds.

The men were taken into custody and the drug seized.





crime-scene-gun.jpgThe festering crime problem that has been plaguing St James jolted the tourism sector on Thursday night when a gunman barged into a hotel room in Montego Bay and raped two female tourists before he lost possession of his weapon and was shot by one of the visitors. After he was shot, the gunman allegedly jumped over a balcony and fled. The weapon, which was reportedly stolen from the room of another guest, was turned over to the police.

"Based on our initial investigations, the gunman was employed to the hotel two days ago as an entertainment coordinator, so it was not someone who walked in off the street," a police officer told The Gleaner. "The gun he had in his possession was stolen from the room of another guest, who is a licensed firearm holder."

According to police reports, at approximately 11:15 p.m., the two visitors, who are from Detroit in the United States, were in their room at the Riu Reggae Hotel in Ironshore, Montego Bay, when a man, who was armed with a handgun, walked in on them. With gun in hand, the man demanded that they perform various sexual acts on him.

While he was raping one woman, the gun reportedly fell from his hand. The other woman picked up the weapon and pointed it at him. He tried to disarm the woman, who fired two shots at him. He ran out of the room, jumped a balcony and fled. The police, who were summoned to the property, found blood stains below the balcony.

"We believe he was shot either once or twice, based on the amount of blood below the balcony and on the ground leading into bushes off the hotel's compound," said a police officer. "We will be carrying out further searches to see if we find him."

Based on preliminary investigations, the police have identified the gunman as Demar Scott. However, there is uncertainty about where he is from as the police have found two identification cards for him, giving two different addresses. One ID card says he is from Exchange district in Ocho Rios, St Ann while the other says he is from Comfort district in Williamsfield, Manchester.

"When we went to the location, one of the women handed over a 9mm Glock 17 pistol with serial number DTN201," said a police officer. "It was loaded with 16 live rounds of ammunition."

Confirming the incident in a statement, the management of RIU said: "Last night, September 27, there was a very unfortunate incident in the Riu Reggae Hotel in which two guests were attacked by a trainee at the entertainment department of the hotel. The man, who had been in training for only three days, was able to escape. The hotel management immediately called the police and accompanied and supported the guests with everything in this difficult moment. We are unable to share further details, both for the protection of our clients' privacy, as well as to not interfere in the investigation being already carried out by the local authorities."

Some six hours after the Riu incident, another Montego Bay hotel was also dragged into the news. At about 5:45 a.m. on Friday, the police, acting on information, went to the Hotel Gloriana on Sunset Boulevard in Montego Bay, where five men were arrested and two illegal firearms seized. The men were wanted in connection with a recent shooting in Spring Mount, also in St James.





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