Caribbean News in Brief – November 29, 2010


Port-of-Spain, Trinidad and Tobago: The nation’s first president, Sir Ellis Clarke, who was hospitalized after suffering a stroke last week, remains in stable condition as of press time.

No word has been given when Clarke, 92, will be released from the West Shore Medical Centre, where he was admitted last Wednesday night.

Sir Ellis was one of the main architects of Trinidad and Tobago’s 1962 Independence Constitution. Prior to serving as the twin-island federation’s first president from 1976 to 1987, he was also the country’s last Governor General.


Roseau, Dominica: Opposition MPs from the United Workers Party (UWP) walked out of Parliament on Monday, accusing Speaker of the House Alix Boyd Knights of abusing her power.

The action came after Boyd Knights refused to allow them an adjournment so that five questions that had been rejected for placement on the Order Paper could be addressed by members on the government side.

The five questions were among eight submitted for the Order Paper, but were rejected by the Speaker on the grounds that they were not supported by the rules of the House.

“We sought to have the house adjourned so that the five questions we submitted would be considered by the ministers,” said UWP leader Ron Green after the walkout.

Green said Boyd Knights had prevented the Opposition from representing the people of Dominica and ensuring that democracy is strengthened.


Paramaribo, Suriname: Venezuela has agreed to supply fuel to Suriname under the Petrocaribe deal from which several other Caribbean Community (CARICOM) member states currently benefit.

Venezuela President Hugo Chavez gave the commitment to his Surinamese counterpart, Desi Bouterse, during the summit of the Union of South American Nations (UNASUR) which concluded last week in Guyana.

Petrocaribe, launched in 2005, allows countries to buy up to 185,000 barrels of oil per day on preferential terms.

Under the agreement, countries only have to pay some of the cost up front, while the remainder can be paid through a 25-year financing agreement on one per cent interest. It also allows for nations to pay part of the cost with other products, such as bananas, rice and sugar.

Chavez also agreed that his country would assist Suriname on housing projects and rice farming, and send urea for fertilizer.

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