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Two Win Caribbean Banking Scholarships

SINT MAARTEN/SAINT LUCIA - Two more regional banking professionals will be building their credentials with support from the Caribbean Association of Banks (CAB) Inc. The 46-year-old organisation, which represents banks and financial institutions across the Caribbean Community, has awarded two scholarships to undertake studies at the University of the West Indies (UWI). Starting in January 2021, the recipients will pursue a BSc .in Banking and Finance (Special or Compliance and Corporate Governance) at the UWI Open Campus.

The two new CAB Scholars are Ms. Danielle Jonas and Ms. Antonette Connor, both 11-year banking veterans. Danielle is a Credit Card Representative at Antigua Commercial Bank, whilst Antonette is a Senior Clerk at St. Kitts Nevis Anguilla National Bank. This year's scholarship recipients take on added significance with the passing earlier in 2020 of CAB Director, Mr. Sean Husain. In his honour, Antonette has been given the Sean Husain Memorial Scholarship.

Ms. Wendy Delmar, CEO of CAB, offered her congratulations to the awardees:

“We have every confidence in Ms. Jonas and Ms. Connor, and we anticipate that they will acquit themselves well, and will continue to be of great credit to their organisations, and the Caribbean banking community as a whole. I was very pleased at the number and quality of the submissions received from our member organisations, and it certainly speaks to the desire for bankers across the region to keep honing their skills and developing the sector to reach its optimal potential.

"We are proud that we can celebrate the life of Sean Husain, a great friend, a great banker, and a believer in the value of education. We miss his wise counsel, but we equally cherish the time that we had with him. We dedicate this scholarship to his family, his friends, and his colleagues at Republic Financial Holdings Ltd., where he served for many years."

CAB's thrust towards member development, support for academic growth, and up-skilling the financial services sector is directly informed by the body’s stated mission – to proactively influence matters of interest to financial institutions through advocacy and education. With a membership numbering over 80 organisations in 20 territories, CAB is designed to support learning.

Employees at member and non-member institutions can discover more about the various education and training initiatives on offer by visiting the CAB website or following the various CAB social media pages.

Danielle Jonas ACB

Danielle Jonas

 

 

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United States Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) donated 1100 Food Packages to Curacao

CURACAO (WILLEMSTAD) - The United States Southern Command (SOUTHCOM) donated $50,000 USD to Curacao for food packages that will assist families negatively impacted by COVID-19.

Staff and families of the U.S. Consulate General Curacao and the U.S. Air Force Forward Operating Location volunteered at the Food Bank to bag the approximately 1,100 food packages.

The catalyst for this project was the fire at the storage facility of the Curacao Red Cross that destroyed important equipment and approximately 250 food packages on May 28, 2020. U.S. Consulate General Curacao worked with SOUTHCOM to identify and execute a Humanitarian Assistance Project.

On September 25, staff, and family of the U.S. Consulate General and airmen from the U.S. Air Force Forward Operating Location (FOL) volunteered to bag these packages at the Food Bank. ‘‘Hunger sees no color or creed and it is the responsibility of good people, to alleviate these pains.

On behalf of the American people I am thrilled that we can make this gesture of support. The United States of America has maintained a presence here in Curacao for 227 years. Through these years we have been through many difficult times together, as well as bountiful times.

We will get through this pandemic. We will continue to seek ways to work together as partners and friends,’’ Consul General Allen Greenberg said.

US CONSULATE INS FRI02

 

 

The U.S. Consulate General Curacao and SOUTHCOM express with gratitude the support and cooperation of the Food Bank, the Ministry of Social Development, Labor, and Welfare, and Esperamos Supermarket that made this possible.

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CPS calls on the Community to Remain Proactive in Removing Mosquito Breeding Habitats after a Rainfall events

GREAT BAY, Sint Maarten (DCOMM) – Due to daily rain events, the community is being reminded to take a proactive approach in removing mosquito breeding habitats in and around your yard, the Collective Prevention Services (CPS), a government department under the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development and Labour, said on Thursday.

Source reduction is the key to decreasing the mosquito population. Due to the tropical nature of our climate, breeding habitats are in abundance, and many of them are unfortunately man-made.

A bite by an infectious Aedes aegypti mosquito, spreads diseases – Dengue, Zika, Chikungunya, Yellow Fever, and Malaria -, and therefore it is crucial for every household to prevent its breeding.

Breeding sites include anywhere that water can settle. This includes tin cans, old tires, empty paint cans, buckets, old saucers, flowerpots, cemetery urns/vase, old pet dishes, unused plastic swimming pools or other containers that collect and hold water.

Every household must do its part to eliminate Aedes aegypti mosquito breeding sites.

Once again, it is very important to check around your yard to make sure there is no standing water after a rainfall event.

Please also note that you can contact the vector team at (721) 542- 1122 / (721) 542- 1222 / (721) 542- 1322 / (721) 542- 1540 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with supporting pictures to report a mosquito nuisance or request assistance.

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Committee of General Affairs to meet with the Chamber of Labor Unions and the Committee of Civil Servants Unions

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten- The Committee of General Affairs will meet on September 30, 2020. The Committee meeting is scheduled for Wednesday at 14.00 hrs. and will be held in a virtual setting. The Chamber of Labor Unions and the Committee of Civil Servants (CCSU) will be in attendance.

The agenda points are:

Discussion with the Chamber of Labor Unions and the Committee of Civil Servants Unions regarding:

  1. Clarification on agreements reached thus far between CCSU and Government.
  2. Status of public and private sector workers in the event of depleted government coffers.
  3. Unions’ proposals of cost-cutting measures to government regarding the conditions set forth by the Dutch government for liquidity support.
  4. Letter from the general Audit Chamber dated June 26, 2020, 0n the illegal withholding of vacation allowance. (IS/033/ 2020-2021 dated September 22, 2020)

(This meeting was requested by MP C.T. Emmanuel, MP C.A. Buncamper, and MP A.E. Arrindell)

Due to measures taken to mitigate the coronavirus (COVID-19), the House of Parliament is only allowing persons with an appointment to enter the Parliament building.

The parliamentary session will be held virtually and will be carried out live on St. Maarten Cable TV Channel 115, via SXM GOV radio FM 107.9, via the internet www.sxmparliament.org, and Parliament’s Facebook page: Parliament of Sint Maarten

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Belgium added to Dutch restricted travel list, as autumn holidays near

SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – The Netherlands has sharpened its travel advice for the whole of Belgium to orange, meaning all but essential travel should be avoided.

A travel warning for Antwerp and Brussels was introduced earlier in the summer. The recommendation has been introduced because Belgium has now classified Noord-Holland, Zuid-Holland and Utrecht as red zones.

Travellers from these three provinces now have to have a test if they are in Belgium for more than 48 hours and must stay in quarantine for 14 days, or as long as their visit lasts – hence the Dutch warning.

All of Spain, Denmark and Britain, plus large parts of France, the Greek islands and the area around Lisbon are currently on the Dutch orange list. Travel is still allowed to all of Germany and Italy.

The Dutch autumn holidays take place between October 10 and 25, depending on the region, but the government is recommending people limit their travel in the Netherlands as well, because of the risk of spreading coronavirus.

(DutchNews)

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Over 350 Attend Rotary Sunset’s Virtual Reading Slumber Fun Event

SINT MAARTEN (PHILIPSBURG) - The Rotary Club of St. Martin Sunset hosted its third annual Reading Slumber Fun event last Friday September 25th.  The Dr. Seuss themed pajama party was held on the virtual Zoom platform and attracted well over 380 children and adults from around the world, dressed in their pajamas with their blankets and pillows and eager for an evening of story time fun.

In recognition of Basic Education and Literacy month, observed by Rotary Clubs during the month of September, the Rotary Club of St. Martin Sunset organized its annual “Reading Slumber Fun” event, a slumber party themed event geared toward advocating the importance of reading and literacy.

The event kicked off at 7pm sharp with welcoming remarks by the President of the Rotary Club of St. Martin Sunset, Elisia Lake, followed by live story telling performances from local readers Todd and Kimberley Chisholm, and Ms. Rita Gumbs. The virtual event starred two international readers; St. Maarten born educator, Naomi Bell, who resides in the USA and Rotary District 7020 Governor, Charles Sealy II, who resides in the Bahamas. Members of Rotary Sunset, Magdiona Gumbs and Leonel Lawrence, also got the opportunity to showcase their talents with a live theatrical puppet show.

The children sat comfortably behind their devices with their blankets and pillows while they attentively listened to the various storytelling performances. The event was hosted by the energetic, Rotarian Kimberley Duzong, who captivated the virtual crowd with her witty mini interactive performances. Rotarian Franjesca Bulbaai tested the participants’ memory with a trivia segment. At the end of the event, the children broke out their disco shoes and joined host Kimberley in a dance party segment.

“One of Rotary Sunset’s objectives is to ensure we take action to empower and inspire children and adults alike, on the importance of literacy when it comes to reading, writing and comprehension. Reading is the first pillar of literacy, so events such as our Reading Slumber Fun encourages young learners to engage themselves in it regularly. We are delighted to have exposed our attendees to a broad variety of different reading styles and materials and we look forward to next year’s event,” President Elisia stated.

The Rotary Club of St. Martin Sunset would like to extend its heartfelt gratitude to Kalaboom Events for providing its office space to execute the setup for this event. A special appreciation goes out to Salteque for its technical support and Rotarian Franjesca Bulbaai for sponsoring the prizes for all winners of the quizzes, games, and dance off segments. The club would also like to extend gratitude to the parents as well as the children who participated, the story readers and puppeteers; Todd Chrisholm, Kimberley Babin, Naomi Bell, Rita Gumbs, DG Charles Sealy II,  Magdiona Gumbs and Leonel Lawrence.

The Rotary Club of St. Martin Sunset meets every second and fourth Monday of the month at Carl N Sons Unique Inn and Conference Facilities in Colebay at 7:30pm. Due to Covid19, the club currently meets via Zoom. The club can be contacted via email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or via the official Facebook page at facebook.com/rotarysxmsunset.

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Bar where corona wardens were threatened and assaulted closed for two weeks

SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – A bar where two community wardens were assaulted and briefly held hostage as they tried to enforce coronavirus restrictions has been closed for two weeks.

The manager of the Zeepaardje café in Medemblik, Noord-Holland, was arrested following the incident just after midnight on Saturday. He remains in custody.

Police said he became abusive after he saw them checking whether customers were breaking the rules and taking photographs with their phones.

Customers allegedly made death threats to the wardens, prevented them from leaving the bar, seized their phones and deleted the images. One of the wardens was slightly injured in the scuffle.

Since last weekend bars in the province have not been allowed to admit people after midnight and must close their doors at 1am. Spot checks to make sure people are complying with other regulations such as the 1.5 metre social distancing rule have also been stepped up.

The bar was closed on the orders of the local mayor, Frank Streng, and the regional safety board which is responsible for the coronavirus rules. ‘It is unacceptable for enforcement officers to be threatened and obstructed while carrying out their duties,’ Streng wrote on Twitter.

‘Keep your hands off our community wardens and enforcement officers.’ A police spokesman said the exact role of the bar manager was being investigated. ‘We are taking this seriously because the violence involved was severe,’ he told NH Nieuws.

(DutchNews)

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Continuation urgent Public meeting of Parliament about the Reconstruction Funds for Sint Maarten

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten-The House of Parliament is currently meeting as part of the continuation of urgent Public meeting no. 27; Parliamentary Year 2019-2020 on Monday, September 28, 2020. 

The Public meeting which was adjourned on September 25, 2020 was reconvened today Monday, September 28, 2020 at 14.00 hrs. and is being held in a virtual setting. The Minister of General Affairs will be in attendance. 

The agenda point is: 

  1. The Focus Audit done by the General Audit Chamber of Sint Maarten in May 2020 referencing “The Reconstruction Funds for Sint Maarten” (IS/888/2019-2020 dated May 29, 2020)

This meeting was requested by MP C.A. Buncamper, MP S.A. Wescot-Williams, MP M.D. Gumbs, MP A.E. Arrindell, MP R.A. Peterson and MP C.T. Emmanuel. 

Due to measures taken to mitigate the coronavirus (COVID-19), the House of Parliament is only allowing persons with an appointment to enter the Parliament building. 

The parliamentary session will be held virtually and will be carried out live on St. Maarten Cable TV Channel 115, via SXM GOV radio FM 107.9, via the internet www.sxmparliament.org, and Parliament’s Facebook page: Parliament of Sint Maarten

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Coronavirus boosts online shopping, DIY and garden centres benefit most

SINT MAARTEN/THE NETHERLANDS – Dutch shoppers spent a record €6.36n online in the second quarter of this year, according to sector association Thuiswinkel.org, as the coronavirus pandemic kept people home.

While the overall increase was 12%, excluding services such as plane tickets and holidays, online sales rose 52% in the second quarter, Thuiswinkel.org said. And the total number of online shoppers rose 800,000 in the second quarter of the year, compared with the same period in 2019.

‘Many people have now discovered online shopping and coronavirus helped them to take that step,’ director Wijnand Jongen said. ‘Almost one million people bought something online for the first time and at least half of them are still doing so.’

DIY and garden centres booked the biggest increase, with an 121% rise in Q2 sales. Furniture store sales were up 105%, while food shops, including supermarkets, booked online sales of over €700m, a rise of 69%.

At the same time, however, spending on plane tickets and other services fell by 45% in the second quarter, due to the uncertainty about holidays and entertainment.

(DutchNews)

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Continuation urgent Public session of Parliament about the lack of approval of various programs that are beneficial to economic reform and growth

PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten-The House of Parliament will sit in a Public meeting on September 25, 2020. The Public meeting which was adjourned on August 27, 2020 will be reconvened on Friday, September 25, 2020 at 13.00 hrs. and will be held in a virtual setting. The Minister of General Affairs will be in attendance. 

The agenda points are:

  1. The lack of approval of various programs that are beneficial to the economic reform and growth of the country. 
  1. The Focus Audit done by the General Audit Chamber of Sint Maarten in May 2020 referencing “The Reconstruction Funds for Sint Maarten” (IS/888/2019-2020 dated May 29, 2020)

This meeting was requested by MP C.A. Buncamper, MP S.A. Wescot-Williams, MP M.D. Gumbs, MP A.E. Arrindell, MP R.A. Peterson and MP C.T. Emmanuel. 

Due to measures taken to mitigate the coronavirus (COVID-19), the House of Parliament is only allowing persons with an appointment to enter the Parliament building. 

The parliamentary session will be held virtually and will be carried out live on St. Maarten Cable TV Channel 115, via SXM GOV radio FM 107.9, via the internet www.sxmparliament.org, and Parliament’s Facebook page: Parliament of Sint Maarten

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