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UK provides thousands in grant funding to Antigua and Barbuda

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lt official photo smiling not for gov.uk

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As the world pauses to commemorate the United Nations (UN) International Day of Persons with Disabilities, the British High Commission St. John’s is pleased to announce a major grant award to the Ministry of Social Transformation, Human Resource Development and the Blue Economy, aimed at improving the lives of individuals living with disabilities.

The Eastern Caribbean $27,333 grant will go towards the development of an aquaponics system for the ministry’s Disability Centre, which will allow participants to not only learn how to set up and operate such systems, but will ultimately serve as a
source of support and income for about 20 participants.

Resident British Commissioner Ms Lindsy Thompson says the news comes at a most fitting time, with ‘Transformative solutions for inclusive development: the role of innovation in fuelling an accessible and equitable world’ serving as this year’s theme for the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

“This grant represents the United Kingdom’s continued support for equity across the globe, especially amid United Nations estimates that an eighth of the world’s population are differently abled,” she said. “We are pleased to support the Ministry of Social Transformation, Human Resource Development and the Blue Economy in this important endeavour to empower and support vulnerable communities in Antigua
and Barbuda.

Media and other important stakeholders will soon be invited to the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) marking this important development.

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Antigua & Barbuda

Chinese spy balloon shot down over Atlantic Ocean

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Two US Air Force F-22 fighter jets on Saturday shot down the Chinese spy balloon that had floated clear across America’s airspace — eight days and more than 4,000 miles after it first breached the US border.

“I want to compliment our aviators who did it,” President Biden told reporters as he cheered the downing en route to Camp David.

The two planes, both based at Langley Air Force Base in Hampton, Vir., circled the surveillance craft as it neared the coast of South Carolina, while the Federal Aviation Administration shut down three airports in North and South Carolina and closed the airspace over Charleston, Myrtle Beach and Wilmington due to “national security initiatives.”

Once the balloon had floated a safe distance into the Atlantic, one of the F-22s took aim with a single AIM-9X missile, a senior military source said.

The supersonic, heat-seeking, air-to-air projectile hit its mark at 2:39 p.m. about 7 miles off the shore of Myrtle Beach.

Two US Air Force F-22 fighter jets on Saturday shot down the Chinese spy balloon that had floated clear across America’s airspace.
Two US Air Force F-22 fighter jets on Saturday shot down the Chinese spy balloon that had floated clear across America’s airspace.
The balloon was shot down eight days and more than 4,000 miles after it first breached the US border.
The balloon was shot down eight days and more than 4,000 miles after it first breached the US border.

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Once the balloon had floated a safe distance into the Atlantic, one of the F-22s took aim with a single AIM-9X missile, a senior military source said.
Once the balloon had floated a safe distance into the Atlantic, one of the F-22s took aim with a single AIM-9X missile, a senior military source said.

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The huge white orb – as large as three school buses, experts said – deflated in a puff of white smoke, its remains trailing behind as its heavy solar panels and surveillance equipment plunged down into the sea below.

US Navy and Coast Guard vessels secured a perimeter to allow “capable Navy divers” and unmanned vessels to recover the debris, which came to rest in about 47 feet of water, officials said.

Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin confirmed the Chinese craft “was being used by the PRC in an attempt to surveil strategic sites in the continental United States.”

“Today’s deliberate and lawful action demonstrates that President Biden and his national security team will always put the safety and security of the American people first,” Austin said.

Local airports resumed normal operations about an hour after the balloon went down, the FAA said.

Officials in Horry County, S.C., warned locals to steer clear of any debris that washed up on local beaches, and to notify authorities if they spot any remnants, which will be part of a federal investigation.

Dexter Roberts, senior fellow at the Atlantic Council’s Asia Security Initiative, said the spy balloon saga came as the relationship between the United States and China hit “one of its lowest points in many years.”

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Though diminutive in frame, his stature was larger than life

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Social media is flooding with messages of condolences to the family of the late Ivor Ford who died last night.

“What a man loved his country and his constitution. R.I.P Ivor Ford, you will be missed”, wrote talk show host Daren Ward on his Facebook page.

UPP Senator Shawn Nicholas wrote “today, I lost one of my proudest and loudest cheerleaders, Ivor Bernard Ford. So much I could say about this man. Though diminutive in frame, his stature was larger than life. Rest in peace, my friend”

A close family friend wrote, “I glimpsed him a few times on the road and said, he is up and around. January 18th one of his relatives mentioned to me that he was in the hospital.

So sorry to learn of his passing,”.

Ford had a long and distinguished stint in public service before retiring.

After retirement, he continued his contribution by serving as a commentator on several national issues.

Ford was a regular voice on various shows on Observer media.



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Williams Pitches For Second Term As Cycling Boss Ahead Of AGM

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cluster
St Clair Williams

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By Neto Baptiste

If elected for a second four-year term as president of the Antigua and Barbuda Cycling Federation (ABCF), St Clair Williams has vowed to concentrate on the areas of education and youth development.

The federation is set to host its electoral congress on February 9 at the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in North Sound.

“We are going to put a lot of seminars in place for educational purposes and we are going to focus a lot on the development of the young cyclists that we have in the sport right now. We’re hoping that the more senior persons will assist that transition because that is what we need in terms of the continuation development … from the senior members like Robert Marsh and Jyme Bridges and so on, because we need that continuity,” he said. 

Williams went on to highlight a number of areas in which the administration has excelled since taking office back in 2019. 

“We would have put a proper insurance system in place and that is the first time we have ever had that in Antigua and Barbuda in cycling; that is one of the major things we would have done. Another thing is that from since our inception, this particular executive, we would have launched an online campaign with respect to putting all of our races or streaming them live on Facebook. That’s another thing that no other association or federation has been doing in Antigua and Barbuda,” he said. 

The incumbent, who expects there to be challengers for the post on the night of the election, reminded that a number of initiatives have also been started under his tenure.

“We would have brought onstream a really good robust programme where we’re getting assistance from the UCI [Union Cycliste Internationale]. We would have gotten 10 new bicycles to outfit us with that programme and … we’ve launched an online campaign with respect to online cycling. So, now we have … online smart trainers where our cyclists can stay wherever they are, in their homes or their office, and do races online, or do casual riding with other persons around the world,” Williams said.

The AGM is slated to start at 7.30pm and will include the tabling of the financial report and the president’s report.

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