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St. Vincent & The Grenadines

Bajans told to eat more lionfish to reduce invasive species

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Barbados Today – Barbadians are being encouraged to include the invasive lionfish species in their diet.

The advice came as Minister of the Environment and Beautification Adrian Forde disclosed that research on the species was being carried out to determine how pervasive it is in the island’s waters.

“I know we have a problem with lionfish. Lionfish have created havoc in our reefs and our oceans, eating a lot of the potential fish and destroying species, but we have started in our ministry to do research on the lionfish and its population along with the Barbados Tourism [Investment Inc.] and [other] players to make it a part of the Barbadian diet,” said Forde.

Minister of People Empowerment and Elder Affairs Kirk Humphrey supported the call for Barbadians to catch and eat more lionfish as he expressed concern that some fishermen were catching juvenile dolphin fish and overfishing other species.

“I would like to encourage Barbadians to reduce the intake of pot fish, only because the pot fish is what is protecting the coral. If they want to eat fish, eat more lionfish. Take out the venomous part of the spine and eat more lionfish. Lionfish now has to become a part of the way we do our diet,” said Humphrey.

He said in addition to teaching residents how to safely prepare the fish for consumption, he wanted to see a competition in catching, preparing and serving lionfish introduced.

“…Because the lionfish is destroying all of the other fish. These things are gluttonous. They are eating everything and if we care about the biodiversity of the ocean we have to find a way to get rid of the [lionfish],” Humphrey insisted.

He said the promised Fisheries Management Regulations to tighten the parameters surrounding fishing and bring greater order to the industry were still before the Chief Parliamentary Counsel.

RELATED ARTICLE: The Health Challenges of Fishing Industry Workers

Among other things, the new regulations will address the type of fishing gear to be used as well as the size, species and weight of fish that can be caught, and outline the opening and closing of fishing seasons.

Insisting that the draft regulations were critical, Humphrey expressed concern about the practice of catching juvenile dolphins and passing them off as “a new kind of dolphin”.

“If you go to any of the markets now you see people telling me they have dolphins in those blue crates –15 and 16 dolphins no bigger than a flying fish or the way flying fish used to be – trying to convince Barbadians that these are a new kind of dolphin . . . . They know they are catching dolphins and other fish that are undersized and they continue to catch these fish that are undersized and sell them to Barbadians under the pretence that it is a new kind of dolphin.

“The ones I am talking about are the baby ones that people are selling to Barbadians, for a lot of money too, and damaging the ocean space in so doing. Some of the fish vendors will tell you they [are] only selling it because they got to eat . . . but this new regulation will ban that,” said Humphrey.





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St. Vincent & The Grenadines

Mi casa es su casa – One News St.Vincent

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The views expressed herein are solely those of the writer.

By Professor Richard A. Byron-Cox (PhD)

America and other military colossuses of this world can and indeed do in their practice of foreign policy, follow Kissinger’sdoctrine of having no permanent friends, only interests.However, if tiny, extremely vulnerable, poor, and virtually powerless nations like SVG were to ignore the need for solidarity, this would be perilous. Building solid fraternal relations is sin qua non not only for protecting their sovereignty and independence, but to their survival! Their viability as sovereign states depends inter alia on appreciation by others of their unique challenges, hence their need for genuine friends, while avoiding and discouraging enmity. This idea is the nucleus of the philosophical foundation of SVG’s foreign policy, andfrom whence its cornerstone principle, “Friends of all, we strive for a better world.”

This indispensable wisdom manifested in practice, standing our nation tall, is not wholly original. The first phrase is borrowed from Errol Walton Barrow, who shepherded Barbados toindependence. We apply his concept mutatis mutandis, extolling the need for friendly relations between nations in this turbulent world. Therefore, we extend our hands unclenched to leftist, rightist, Islamism, socialist, the great, small, rich, and poor,willing the construct of a better, saner world. We’ve reached out to Libya’s now deceased Gaddafi, Russia’s Putin, and Iran’s Raisi, -all considered rogues by the global gendarmes-, for in sowing seeds of friendship, one must join hands with those deemed enemies by others, while if truth be told, they are very good Samaritans, Cuba being a case in point.

The connection between these islands existed eons before they were colonized. Our indigenous peoples canoed from theOrinoco to The Bahamas long prior the arrival of imperialism’s violent fists, and genocidal settler colonialism. Our link was damaged; never broken! In modern times many Vincentiansmade the trek to Cuba, some remained, as the Teófilo Stevenson’s story confirms. 1959 saw the birth of the Cuban revolution. Incensed, the American empire branded Cuba an enemy. But like Bill Withers, magnanimous Fidel and disobedient SVG know, we must of necessity, lean on each other, and so rejected this vile maxim that we must be fist pumping at one another.

When our volcano erupted in 1979, Cuba offered assistance. St. Vincent, yet under British colonial yoke, defied American isolationist politics and accepted what we could. Cuba further stretched forth its hands, granting our youths scholarships. They are now solid professionals, thanks to this first-wave of generosity. With the triumph of the Grenada revolution in 1979,the US up the ante, intensifying its anti-Cuba policy, continuing this even after that revolution was murdered in infancy. PM James Mitchell seeing the rest of CARICOM’s firm rebuke ofWashington by their rebuff of its hegemonic confrontational stance, established diplomatic relations with Havana in 1992. From thence the SVG-Cuba ties strengthened. The watershed came in 2001 when the ULP stormed to office.

Under Gonsalves’ leadership our relations blossomed into a mutually beneficial embrace. Cuba has held our hands in education, health, infrastructure and more. We staunchly defend Cuba in every forum regardless of what America says! We stand in solidarity with Cubans during disasters; we work closely in all fora of the Americas, and in broader international arenas such as the Non-Aligned Movement and the UN. During the Obama years, we played our little part in the brief small thaw in US clenched-fist behaviour to Cuba. Notwithstanding that Washington has since retightened its fists, we are hosting the long-overdue visit of a Cuban President, saying unequivocally to Brother Díaz-Canel, “Nuestra casa es su casa!” for Cuba has said to us so many times, “Mi casa es su casa.”

I often expressed via the press the wish that Fidel visited SVG. Sadly, he departed for Valhalla without this being realized. I have also called for a prominent street or place to be named in his honour in recognition of Cuba holding hand not just with us and CARICOM, but with all oppressed humanity. This moment is here now! We must never forget Cuba’s role in the liberation of the countries of Southern Africa; nor should we forget itsmedical humanitarian missions to many parts of the world; and its selfless generosity to the Third World. If ever a country showed what love from a nation looks like, it’s Fidel’s Cuba. And “love is the answer” according to our own Dr. Alston “Becket” Cyrus. Finally, it must be underlined that the visit of President Díaz-Canel is not merely a reflection of good SVG-Cuba relations. Rather it is a powerful example of leadership in the cause of upholding international law and morality, grounded in friendship and respect for national sovereignty, which are essential for international peace and security.



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National Nine Mornings Festival launches this Sunday

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The 2022 National Lotteries Christmas/Nine Mornings Festival will be officially launched this Sunday, December 4 at Heritage Square, in Kingstown, from 7:00 p.m.

The festival was interrupted in 2020 and 2021, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the eruption of La Soufriere Volcano.
The organisation committee said in a release that Sunday’s launch will feature the return of the street parade, where patrons will engage in a candle light cultural street procession through the streets of Kingstown, commencing at Heritage Square at 6:00 p.m and returning to Heritage Square.

The parade will be accompanied by the Royal St Vincent and the Grenadines (RSVG) Police Force Band, and will also feature dance groups, community groups, drumming groups, and X-Pan from Sion Hill.

On returning to Heritage Square the other events will commence with a short opening ceremony  which would include the blessing of the festival by the Pastor Randy Boucher, and worship from the Exalt Him Worship Ministries. The Epic Sound Steel Orchestra will provide steel band music and a special mini presentation will be done by the RSVG Police Band.

The Launch will also hear Christmas greetings from the chairman of the National Nine Mornings Committee, with corporate sponsors- the National Lotteries Authority and Vinlec bringing remarks. Minister of Culture, Carlos James will then declare the festival open with the turning on of the lights at the Square. 

The St Vincent and the Grenadines (SVG) Christmas and Nine Mornings Committee will recognize a number of community stalwarts for their invaluable contribution to the festival over the years.

A varied cultural package will climax the evenings’ activities.





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Cuban President to tour medical facility on Day Two of visit to St Vincent and the Grenadines

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Cuban President to tour medical facility on Day Two of visit to St Vincent and the Grenadines

A visit to the Modern Medical and Diagnostic Centre at Georgetown is one of the highlights of Day Two of the visit of President Miguel Diaz-Canel to St Vincent and the Grenadines.

The Modern Medical and Diagnostic Centre (MMDC) which was officially opened on July 2, 2018, was built at a cost of EC$42 million with substantial assistance from the Republic of Cuba.

Several medical professionals from Cuba are also among the staff at the MMDC.

The Cuban head of state and his delegation will be given a tour of the MMDC, after which they will be hosted to lunch at the Beachcombers Hotel by Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves.

Tomorrow, Monday December 5, the final day of the visit, wife of the President, Lis Cuesta Peraza accompanied Eloise Gonsalves, wife of the Prime Minister will, at Young Island, view an exhibition of products by Vincentian entrepreneurs, followed by cultural performances.

The Cuban first lady will also have a private discussion with Vincentian women who studied in Cuba and Cuban women living in SVG.

President of Cuba Miguel Diaz-Canel (right) and his wife Lis Cuesta Peraza arriving at the Argyle International Airport on Saturday (API photo)

Also on Monday, the President will pay a courtesy call on head of state Governor General Dame Susan Dougan, and while he is at Government House, his wife, accompanied by Mrs Gonsalves will visit the Botanic Gardens.

The three-day official visit will culminate in a special sitting of the House of Assembly which will be addressed by President Diaz-Canel, Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves and Leader of the Opposition Dr Godwin Friday.

Members of Cabinet met with the Cuban Delegation during a lunch at La Vue Hotel on Saturday. (API photo)

Shortly after his arrival yesterday, Saturday December 3, the Cuban head of state held discussions with Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves at La Vue Boutique Hotel and Beach Club.

He also met with Cuban workers in SVG and members of the Cuba Friendship Society at the Beachcombers Hotel.





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