Three foreign nationals were on Sunday arrested at the Norman Manley International Airport (NMIA) in Kingston, Jamaica after cash totalling US$93,000 and other currencies were reportedly found in their possession.Two of the accused are nationals of Suriname, while the other is from French Guiana.The three, who were attempting to board a flight to Guyana, were arrested about 14:45h after they were searched, and US dollars were found concealed on their persons.Other currencies they had in their possession included SR$325, €150, and J$50. The Police said they were arrested on suspicion of breaching the Proceeds of Crime Act.The three remain in custody as the investigation continues. The Police said their identities are being withheld at this time. (Jamaica Observer)
Following numerous and repeated recommendations from election observer groups over the years for the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) to undergo reforms, the Alliance For Change (AFC) has stated that these transformations will not be likely before the 2020 General and Regional Elections.This was disclosed by the party’s General Secretary David Patterson, who told reporters at a press conference on Friday that while GECOM reforms is high on the AFC’s priority list, it is unlikely that this will be done in time for the country’s next national elections.“It is quite high (on the priority list) but to get there before 2020… As a party, we do know that we will be part of the Government from 2020 going on… so therefore we have talked and I’ve given it a lot of thought, and I know coming up to elections, what areas we have to look at not only politically but administratively and legislatively to strengthen the hand of the AFC either singly or in a coalition or shared governance – whatever format – and that’s what is driving our priorities,” Patterson stated.For decades now, Elections Observer Groups both internationally and regionally have been insisting that while GECOM’s purpose for existence is to administer free and fair electoral processes, Guyana should consider reforms that would reduce or eliminate the politicised composition of election bodies in order to ensure independence and impartiality.However, while the AFC recognised the need to end the practice of having political appointees as members of GECOM, the party’s General Secretary admitted on Friday to reporters that little has been done to bring the matter up for discussion with its coalition partner – A Partnership for National Unity (APNU).Patterson explained that this is so because the AFC has as priority issues such as Constitution reforms, campaign financing legislations and corruption matters on its agenda.He said, “It is not one of the topics that have arisen at the moment so far… We don’t want to move anything to displace our priority which is constitutional reform. We have a massive list of things to discuss which we go down sequentially. (The list of things) is getting longer everyday to discuss with our coalition partner but there are certain things which we are mandated to do by our members and constitutional reforms and campaign financing and corruption issues and things like that are high on the agenda,” the General Secretary said, while adding that the AFC will eventually get to the reforming of GECOM.Currently, the elections oversight body comprised using the Carter Centre model that was introduced for the 1992 elections. This model provides for three members each from Government and Opposition and the Chairman appointed by the President from a list of names submitted to him by the Opposition, a process which many say have since exhausted its usefulness.To this end, Patterson outlined that the AFC believes there should be more civil society involvement in GECOM. In fact, he recalled that his party has recommended that the seven-member commission be replaced with a 10-member body, three of whom will be representatives from political parties and the remaining members from civil society.“We have been on record and we reduced the Government and Opposition’s participation to a third and rest must be made up of civilians,” he stated, while noting that such a model has been adopted by Jamaica and is proving to be successful.AFC General SecretaryDavid Patterson
February 12, 201480 students from Chandler Highschool visited Arcosanti on Feb. 12. 2014. For the Arcosanti tour they were divided into three groups with a tourguide each. They visited the foundry during a bronze pour.[photos by archive volunteer Chihiro Saito, text by Sue Kirsch]Here is foundry staff member / tour guide Alex DeWald explaining the process of bronze bell production.Tourguide Anne-Marie Vaduva.The Green Room behind the Colly Soleri Amphitheater stage.Many school groups visit Arcosanti for tours and lunch and sometimes for silt workshops. This is a very good educational opportunity.For more information on group tours for students of all ages see this linkor contact our Guest Services at 928.533.8295.