Caribbean Report 04-02-1999



Table of Contents

1. Headlines with anchor Ken Richards (00:26)
2. Saint Lucia is rushing ahead of other Caribbean countries in its fight against the deadly AIDS disease. Pete Ninvalle reports on the Health Ministry announcement of a major breakthrough in the treatment of the disease with the use of the drug AZT administered to pregnant women. The aim of the programme is to drastically reduce the rate of infection from mother to infant. The health programme will also include education and diagnosis. Health Minister Sarah Flood views this move as a significant breakthrough in fighting the disease (00:27 - 02:26)
3. Dominica backs an OECS mandate to implement proper legislative and regulatory framework to govern the telecommunication market in the region and phase out the monopoly of telecommunications giant Cable and Wireless. Matthias Peltier reports on the country’s efforts to host a national consultation on the telecommunications industry. This open consultation is expected to solicit ideas for the proposed telecommunications reform initiative and assist with the introduction of new legislation. Bermuda’s Premier Jennifer Smith comments on her country’s longstanding relationship with Cable and Wireless and the presence of competition from other telecommunication companies on the island (02:27- 07:58)
4. The final documents on the proposed Caribbean Court of Justice are due to go before Caribbean Heads of Government in five months. Trinidad and Tobago Attorney General Ramesh Lawrence Maharaj is optimistic that the proposal will find favour with the Caribbean Heads and dispels media reports linking the establishment of the Caribbean Court of Justice to the issue of capital punishment. He justifies the establishment of the Court as a proactive response to the region’s need to have its own jurisprudence (07:59 – 10:48)
5. The Prime Minister of India Atal Bihari Vajpayee is expected to make a two day visit to Trinidad and Tobago. Tony Fraser reports on the trip objectives which includes strengthening economic ties, discussions on low cost housing programmes and advancing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the transfer of technology (10:49 - 12:27)
6. Haiti’s President René Préval has failed to meet a self-imposed deadline to name a new electoral council following months of negotiations with the opposition in Parliament. Chelston Lee reports on Preval’s failure to appoint a new provisional electoral council, a nine member body required by Haiti’s constitution to organize voting for elections. Préval is requesting more time to constitute a credible and unbiased body to organise the next elections and allow for national and international observers of the electoral process. The United Nations Security Council is calling on Préval to overcome his differences with other Haitian leaders and resolve Haiti’s political problems. Journalist Michael Norton reports on the current impasse (12:28 - 15:18)