Caribbean Report 14-03-1991

Abstract

The political crisis continues in Antigua and a report is provided on the current state of events as the Deputy Prime Minister delivers an emotional speech in Parliament. Preparations for the May 25th elections is in progress in Suriname. However, there seem to be a lack of interest by members of the population as the voter registration is not significant. A Canadian Member of Parliament, Jim Karygiannis appears to be fighting for his own political life when he returns to Canada after a week long visit to Trinidad and Tobago. Mr. Karygiannis. He has stated that his reason for the visit to Trinidad and Tobago was on behalf of its citizens who were seeking refugee status in Canada due to discrimination faced by the government of Trinidad and Tobago. There is hope for greater economic development in the Caribbean when the free trade bloc between the United States, Canada and Mexico finally comes into effect. Such development is likely to take place in tourism and imports into the Caribbean.

Description

Segment 2 contains a clip of Lester Bird’s emotive speech in Parliament.

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1. Headlines (00:00 – 00:27)
2. This segment provides an update on the political crisis in Antigua. Lester Bird, the Deputy Prime Minister, delivers an emotional speech in Parliament and gives the reasons for calling his father, Prime Minister Vere Bird Snr. to retire. He said he rejected his father’s feeble attempt to present a budget in its correct legal form as it caused him great concern. He warned the six MPs who have joined him to stand firm with their position to support the call for the retirement of Dr.. Bird. It appears that there will be a new cabinet tomorrow and Vere Bird Jnr., the disgraced son of the Prime Minister, will be appointed as a member of the cabinet (00:28 – 03:08)
3. An update from Suriname is provided as preparations for the May 25 elections is in progress. The interim government has launched a nationwide campaign calling for citizens to register to vote in the upcoming elections as the deadline for registration draws close. To date only 10% of the population has responded to the call due to their disappointment with the performance of the last government. There seems to be a lack of interest in the upcoming elections (03:09 – 05:07)
4. This segment provides an update on the oil slick that occurred in St. Maarteen, St. Barts and other islands in the Caribbean. It appears that it has practically disappeared and the beach front residents are involved in cleaning up activities. However, patches of oil are still in the coastal waters and residents are not letting their guard down. They have established contacts with many agencies in the event that there is need to call for expert assistance (05:08 - 07:07)
5. A Canadian Member of Parliament, Jim Karygiannis, has caused political and diplomatic heat waves in Trinidad and Tobago and Ottawa. Mr. Karygiannis is likely to find himself in hot water when he returns to Canada for making discriminatory claims against the government of Trinidad and Tobago. He has stated that his reason for his week long visit to Trinidad and Tobago was on behalf of Trinidad and Tobago citizens who were seeking refugee status in Canada due to discrimination. He also said that the allegations of persons seeking refugee status in Canada are true Ms. Sheila Cox, Acting Liberal Party Leader, has indicated that Mr. Karygiannis’ statements were not sanctioned by the party and it is clear that he will face serious ramifications. The party also plans to apologize to the Prime Minister of Trinidad and Tobago for the unfavourable statements made by Mr. Karygiannis (07:08 - 10:45)
6. When the free trade bloc between the United States, Canada and Mexico finally comes into effect, it is likely that it will be larger than the European Economic Community and three times larger than Japan’s domestic market. What’s in it for the Caribbean? Pete Ninvalle finds out from Ed Nuffield, former Director of International Trade and Finance in the Canadian government and now Vice President of Economic and Corporate Affairs at the Royal Bank of Canada. Mr. Nuffield believes that there would be big increases in the purchasing power over the next 10 years and greater economic development for the Caribbean, particularly in tourism and imports (10:46 – 14:05)
7. Hugh Crosskill provides an update on Antigua, the debate is still going on. There is no official outcome yet (14:06 – 15:55)

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