Stories for January 2013


Thursday, January 31

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A charge to keep

“Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” (Matt 28:19)

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Finding true love

As mentioned in my previous meditation, all the other loves of life will make sense and fall into their rightful place when we realize that we cannot become who God intends us to become without the lord.

Community programme seeks to give direction to youth

STEERING the lives of young people in the right direction is at the core of a mentoring program recently launched.

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JUST IN: 75 straw vendors suspended from market

Almost 75 Straw Vendors have been suspended from the Straw Market until they can bring their license fees out of arrears, according to the market's chairman Ron Pinder.

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Killed by gunshot to the head

A 24-year-old man died in hospital yesterday after he was shot in the head early yesterday morning.

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Questions unanswered by the Prime Minister

FOR THE past two days, Prime Minister Perry Christie has refused interviews with reporters as to what the public can expect in the aftermath of Monday’s failed referendum.

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Gene testing launched in breast cancer study

WITH one in four Bahamian women carrying a possibly deadly genetic mutation related to breast cancer, a study of hereditary breast cancer has been launched to raise awareness and save lives.

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Robbery trial duo acquitted

THE men who were on trial in the Supreme Court for nearly a week in connection with the brazen daylight robbery of tourists during an eco-tour of Earth Village were acquitted of the nine charges against them on the direction of the judge.

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Former PLP minister hopes web shops will continue to operate

FORMER PLP Cabinet minister George Smith said he hopes the web shop operators will prevail in their efforts to continue operating gaming businesses.

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'Christie must keep his word and close web shops'

PRIME MINISTER Perry Christie must keep his word and carry out the mandate of the Bahamian people by closing all web shops and gaming houses, Christian Council President Ranford Patterson said yesterday.

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FNM hits out at web shop court bid

COURT action taken by web shop bosses over the government’s order that the sale of numbers is to cease sparked criticism from FNMs yesterday.

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Urban renewal patrol at the Big Yard

IN an effort to address the problems that many “marginalised” Bahamians face, police officers and Urban Renewal workers did a walk-about through the community of a government complex known as “The Big Yard”.

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One last parade

PRIMARY schools St Bede’s and Our Lady’s took to the streets yesterday to commemorate Catholic School Week for the last time.

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Judge directs jury to find man innocent of triple shooting

A MAN accused of trying to murder a mother, son and nephew was acquitted of triple attempted murder in Supreme Court yesterday when the judge directed the jury to deliver a unanimous not guilty verdict.

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Clean-up plans made for Freeport Junkanoo

FREEPORT – On February 2, Junior Junkanoo will take to the streets of downtown Freeport, following the excitement of the Senior Junkanoo on New Year’s Day.

Heart disease top killer in the Bahamas

HEART disease is the number one killer of people in the Bahamas and around the world.

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Attorneys: Real estate legal work down 90%

Two leading attorneys yesterday said real estate-related legal work in Freeport was down by “more than 90 per cent” compared to pre-recession levels, with an Albany or Baker’s Bay-style development vital to a market turnaround.

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Privy Council to Bahamians: Record land deals 'at once'

Bahamians were yesterday warned by the Privy Council to register their land deals with the Registrar General’s Department “at once”, after it gave the developers at the strife-torn Oceania Heights project something to smile about.

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Gov't unveils $250m BEC bond

The Government yesterday unveiled a planned $250 million bond to refinance the troubled Bahamas Electricity Corporation (BEC), saying it was “the first step to rehabilitate” its financial position.

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Web shops: Licensing indicated we'd be legal

ATTORNEYS representing web shop operators yesterday said the Government knew full well what the industry involved, arguing that the licensing of such enterprises would have formed a “legitimate expectation” of their legalisation.

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Realtors fear sales 'flattening out' if no duty exemption

Leading realtors yesterday urged the Government to extend the $500,000 first-time buyer Stamp Duty exemption beyond its current June 30 expiration, warning that its end would cause sales to “flatten out” in the most critical part of the Bahamian market.

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The art of understanding

It is typical human nature to admire beauty around us. We commonly associate art with a painting or sculpture displayed in a museum or art gallery, but it is everywhere, in many forms, and holds significant value in our lives.

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Scotiabank sponsors regional energy forum

Scotiabank was a sponsor of the recent 13th Annual Caribbean Energy Conference held at Atlantis, Paradise Island.

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BEC owed $143m by private sector

THE cash-strapped Bahamas Electricity Corporation (BEC) is currently owed $143 million by the Bahamian private sector, its chairman said yesterday, adding that it was sinking further into financial problems.

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BEC to 'reschedule' $12m overtime bill

THE Bahamas Electricity Corporation`s (BEC) excecutive chairman yesterday said it will move to a rostering and scheduling system with effect from February 1 in a bid to reduce its more than $12 million annual overtime bill.

Summit set to address 'slow' captive growth

This weekend’s International Business and Financial Summit (IBFS) will address why the Bahamas has been seeing “relatively slow” growth in its captive insurance business, despite its remodelled External Insurance Act.

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Renewables can cut electricity price 75%

RENEWABLE energy could help drive Bahamian electricity prices down to 10-15 cents per kilowatt hour, compared to their current 40 cents level, the Minister of the Environment said yesterday.

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Setting sail for St Valentine's Day

A staple on the local sloop sailing calendar, the 26th edition of the St Valentine’s Day Regatta will produce what is being billed as a “New and Different Kind of Regatta”.

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Track and Field season is back under way

Track and Field season is in full swing, which means each weekend is an opportunity for young track and field athletes to showcase their talent in preparation for local and international competition throughout the year.

Web shop employers

It has been estimated that the annual earnings of web shop operators range between $400 million and $450 million – maybe more, more likely $500 million, which is half a billion dollars.

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COB continues search for elite athletes

In an effort to build upon the foundation of a fairly new, yet relatively successful athletic programme, the College of the Bahamas will continue its search for elite student athletes.

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Government to abide by court order

THE Government of the Bahamas and the police will not be taking any action against the patrons and operators of local “web shops” pending the outcome of a “conservatory order” filed by attorney Wayne Munroe.

Wednesday, January 30

Don't count me out

Ricardo Clarke has been touching the Bahamas, the Caribbean and even the world with his heartfelt singles “Not Settling” and “Wasting No Time”. His music continues to go beyond the borders of the Bahamian, reaching countries such as Japan, Russia, United Kingdom, Europe and Russia.


EDITOR, The Tribune.

Liturgical dance ministry

ST AMBROSE Parish has a need for a community centre. Church members have held several initiatives to raise funds, including the recent Praise Fest presented by the church’s liturgical dance ministry.

Eleuthera's DJ Crunktified to continue mother's legacy in church

Family Island music promoter Jamie ‘DJ Crunktified’ Isaacs has officially been named senior pastor of the church founded by his mother, the respected evangelist and prophetess Pastor Arlene Isaacs.

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Radio station names top 20 Bahamian artists of 2012

The top 20 Bahamian artists on Island FM’s Inspiration with Keith radio show were officially revealed last week as ones to watch in the new year.

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Four questioned after man shot dead

Four men are being questioned by police in connection with a murder on Wednesday morning.

TOUGH CALL: The botched referendum

THE internet arrived in the Bahamas in 1995.

YOUNG MAN'S VIEW: Christie's legacy hangs on referendum's outcome

ONE can rest assured that there is quite a bit of shadow boxing going on behind the scenes as the much-ballyhooed referendum date approaches.

Government distracted; fiscal restraint needed

THE MOMENT we saw the first questions for the so-called gaming referendum we knew the jig was up.

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Mother and daughter represent Bahamas in softball contest

VERY seldom have you seen a parent and child combination reach the stage where they get to represent the country on a national team.

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Craig Flowers pledges to stick with golf course plan

WHILE the government has made a decision to close down all web shops as a result of the referendum, FLM Group of Companies proprietor Craig Flowers said he is still committed to completing the three-par nine hole golf course at the Baillou Hills Sporting Complex.

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Williams first home in Baptist fun run

ONE week after running the half marathon at Marathon Bahamas 2013, Mackey Williams stepped down in distance to win the Baptist Sports Council’s annual Family Fun Run/Walk race that was held on Saturday.

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Expert advice for sports minister

On Monday, January 28, 2013, two of the finest Sports Administrators,Messrs Martin Lundy,a former Director of Sports and

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Strange sight at Atlantis

A TEAM of 28 Atlantis aquarists, divers and veterinarians completed the transfer of a 1,110-pound manta ray from the resort’s 2.7 million-gallon marine habitat back into the Atlantic Ocean as part of their renowned release and research programme.

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What the web shop employees and patrons say after the vote

WEB SHOPS throughout the country remained open yesterday despite the resounding “no” vote in Monday’s gambling referendum.

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Unemployed given crash course in entrepreneurship

UNEMPLOYED youngsters were given a chance to learn about entrepreneurship in a government course.

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Minister addresses young people at creativity event

THE Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture in partnership with CARICOM hosted the opening of the second annual Creativity for Employment and Business Opportunity.

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Former NBA hero stars for Bahamas

FREEPORT, Grand Bahama – The Bahamas, and Grand Bahama Island, in particular, did not lack representation or the opportunity to boast the many benefits of investing here.

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Energy experts offer views at US event

ON Tuesday, January 22 US Charge´ d’Affaires John Dinkelman hosted an event at Liberty Overlook in honour of Gary Ward, the Director of American Affairs in the US Department of Energy’s Office of Policy and International Affairs.

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Victim 'could have bled to death'

IF the bullets that struck a female shooting victim on April 8, 2011, hit a major blood vessel, she could have bled to death very quickly, a jury was told yesterday.

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Man jailed for 12 years over car robbery eight years ago

A MAN was sentenced to 12 years imprisonment yesterday after admitting to robbing a man of $35,000 car at gunpoint eight years ago.

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Church scuffle case delayed until March

THE trial of three ministers accused of getting into a scuffle on the pulpit following a succession battle for church leadership has been adjourned to March 8.

Water interruptions

INTERRUPTIONS to water supplies are expected for the general public and residents in Mollie Street.

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FNM leader: Result questions Christie’s ability to run country

THE resounding rejection of the gambling referendum questions has brought into question the Christie administration’s ability to run the country, FNM leader Dr Hubert Minnis said.

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'Shutting number houses right action'

SHUTTING down all web shops and gambling operations is the right thing to do following the overwhelming “no” referendum vote, according to opposition party leaders.

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Man chased down by gang and shot dead

ONE man became the country’s latest murder victim when he was shot in the head as he fled from a group of men who had pursued him after an argument.

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Galanis: Web shops are legal

VOTE “Yes” coordinator Phillip Galanis said yesterday web shops are legal entities and should remain open despite Bahamians’ overwhelming “no” vote in Monday’s gaming referendum.

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Landslide of voters said 'NO'

OUT OF 38 constituencies in the Bahamas only three returned a majority “yes” vote, Acting Parliamentary Commissioner Sherlyn Hall said yesterday.

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'Injunction granted to web shop operators'

An Injunction has been granted to prevent the government, police, and attorney general from shutting down web shops pending a hearing before the Chief Justice, The Tribune has just learned.

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Cargill to argue for moss to be jailed

NATIONAL Insurance Board director Algernon Cargill has been granted permission to argue before the Supreme Court that former NIB chairman Greg Moss should be imprisoned for contempt of court.

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Teenagers die in bike crash

OFFICERS from the Traffic Department are investigating the country’s latest traffic fatality, which occurred on Monday, January 28.

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Injunction filed by numbers bosses

A SUPREME Court injunction will be filed this morning by attorney Wayne Munroe to block any move by the government from interfering with the operations of Island Games, Island Luck, Asue Draw, and FML after Prime Minister Perry Christie ordered all webshop gaming operations closed last night with immediate effect.

Bimini Bay developer in $106k 'fraud' stay

The Bimini Bay Resort & Casino’s developers have succeeded in arguing that a US court should send a lawsuit filed by a former condo purchaser, who is alleging he was “defrauded” of $106,000, into arbitration in the Bahamas.

Beres Hammond and R Kelly concerts collide

SOCIAL Networks have been swarmed with concert gossip over the past few weeks after news broke that two major events will clash on the same date in February.

Bimini developer invests $2m in ferry faclities

RAV Bahamas, parent company of the Bimini Bay Resort & Marina, has invested $2 million in infrastructure to accommodate Balearia Ferry Group’s Bahamas Express ferry service between Bimini and South Florida.

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DJ OF THE WEEK: Tiko T 'Da Entertainer'

ONE of the newest members of the 100 JAMZ team hails from Grand Bahama, with a talent that has the music world talking.

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Quilting tradition lives on

WHY DO members of the Stepping Stone Quilters Guild practice their craft in the Bahamas where the weather is mostly warm?

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Bahamian artists capture highest tourism honour

SIGNIFICANT accomplishments in the creative industries were recognised during the 15th annual Cacique Awards on Sunday at the Sheraton Nassau Beach Resort.

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Referendum leaves Bahamas exposed to laundering sanctions

THE Bahamas remains exposed to potential international sanctions over illegal web shop gaming as a result of Monday’s referendum, the ‘Yes’ vote campaign co-ordinator wartned yesterday.

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Minister: Web shop money laundering fear 'not very high'

A Cabinet Minister yesterday said money laundering concerns stemming from a banned/underground web shop gaming industry were “not very high”, but others said it would be “naive” not to think the situation may attract international attention.

Bahamas is facing FATCA 'trade-offs'

The Bahamas will have “to make some trade-offs” in negotiating an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA) with the US, a leading accountant said yesterday, adding that his clients were “more comfortable” taking this route to meet Foreign Tax Compliance Act’s (FATCA) requirements.

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Gov't can use 75% 'no show' mandate to legalise gaming

The Government can use the fact that 75 per cent of the electorate failed to vote in Monday’s referendum as “a mandate” to legalise web shop gaming, a leading businessman said yesterday, although it is apparently willing to risk potential “turmoil” from shutting the sector down.

MARKETING REVOLUTION: Getting the script right

Just a short time ago it was easy to tell a locally-produced commercial from an international one. Any locally produced commercial was horrible.

Fishermen enduring hard lobster season

THE 2012-13 crawfish season has been rough, according to Bahamas Commercial Fishers Alliance (BCFA) president Adrian LaRoda, who yesterday said bad weather, market prics and poaching were all to blame for the downturn.

American Idol or cat fight?

MARIAH CAREY argued with Nicki Minaj. Nicki Minaj walked off set. Keith Urban took time out for fatherly duties. Randy was Randy.

Young musicians gain post-race exposure

AFTER a stellar performance during the recently held Susan G Komen Race for the Cure, young members of the Urban Renewal Youth Band are making their mark on the music scene.

Tuesday, January 29

BFSB summit focuses on tax, regulatory demands

The global focus on taxation, anti-money laundering and demands for greater transparency will be discussed at this week’s International Business & Finance Summit (IBFS).

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PM announces all web shops must close with immediate effect

Prime Minister Perry Christie has announced that all web shops must close with immediate effect.

Many Bahamians jubilant by ‘No’ vote

At the other end of the telephone last night was a group of laughing, jubilant women.

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Ingraham has the last laugh over referendum

FORMER Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham insisted that he is not responsible for the numbers referendum becoming a political issue.

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Warning over road closure in Nassau

MOTORISTS are urged to watch out for a major road closure in Nassau.

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Minnis: This was an attempt to take advantage of Bahamians

OPPOSITION LEADER Dr Hubert Minnis yesterday accused the government of allowing web shop owners to take advantage of Bahamians during “hard times”.

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House given overhaul by Kiwanis Club

WHAT began last administrative year as a project to simply install a door for a senior citizen has mushroomed into an entire house overhaul.

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Ministers accused of church scuffle back in court

THREE ministers accused of getting into a scuffle on the pulpit following a succession battle for church leadership are expected to return to court today, when the prosecution is expected present its final witness.

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Bahamas misses qualifying spot

FREEPORT, Grand Bahama: The Bahamas women’s national softball team fell short of their goal of qualifying for the English Caribbean Amateur Softball Confederation’s (ECASC) only spot for the World Championships in Cali, Columbia, in July.

Local teams in T20 event

The focus will be on regional and international play for the upcoming week, but the following month will see a shift to competition between the top local teams in the cricket community.

Learning experience for running trio

IT was quite a learning experience for the Bahamas’ three-woman team to the North American and Central American and Caribbean (NACAC) Cross Country Championships over the weekend at the Manchester Golf Club, Mandeville, Jamaica.

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Tough task in the NCAA

It was a tough weekend for Bahamian student athletes on the NCAA basketball schedule, with their schools matched up against two of the top ranked schools in the country.

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Sir Durward calls on the public to help fund regatta

With the National Family Island Regatta still months away, the most iconic name in the sport and arguably in the history of Bahamian sports, has made the call for the sailing community and the public at large to assist with funding of the 60th edition of the event.

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All smiles at annual trike-a-thon

STUDENTS of Tambearly, The Meridian and Lyford Cay International Schools all participated in the third annual St Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital Trike-A-Thon last Friday.

THINK UP: 'None but ourselves can free our minds'

A short cut through a less than safe area in Nassau triggered a very telling visual for me last week. As I drove, my eyes caught a drunken man who was being physically pushed aside by pedestrians within the community. When his stressed body finally gave out to the street in collapse, a handful of young potcake puppies were jumping all over themselves to engage the intoxicated man.

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Domestic violence and murder wreaks havoc for three sisters

Stacey Rolle is the last of her father’s three daughters. Staying on the right path has been no small task for her, and the struggle continues daily.

THE VOICES OF WOMEN: Shaping a village of values or vices

Women across the globe are effectively using the power of their voices to advocate for social justice, freedom and equality. Armed with nothing more than keen social responsibility, they help the less fortunate, protect the most vulnerable and campaign for the education and wellbeing of children.

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Government to shift focus on gender affairs

THE government reaffirmed its commitment to elevate the status of the Bureau of Women’s Affairs by announcing plans to create a Department of Gender Affairs.

Stop the helicopters

EDITOR, The Tribune.

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UPDATE: Murder in Kennedy Subdivision

Police are reporting a murder in Kennedy Subdivision. Details are sketchy at this time.

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JUST IN: Christie charting the way forward after referendum

As a result of yesterday's referendum, Prime Minister Perry Christie said his government will be guided by the vote in charting "the way forward".

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Voters say no to gambling

RECORD low voter turnout didn’t dampen the spirits of the Vote No campaign, with church leaders and FNM officials celebrating what they described as a landslide victory in yesterday’s gambling referendum.

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'Vote reaffirms my faith'

VOTE No campaign spokesperson Pastor Lyall Bethel said that yesterday’s victory in the gambling referendum confirmed his faith in the church and confirmed that the majority of Bahamians “in their heart of hearts” know gambling is wrong.

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Flowers not surprised by low voter turnout

CRAIG Flowers, head of FML Group of Companies, said he wasn’t surprised by yesterday’s low voter turnout for the referendum on gambling as there wasn’t “enough excitement” from the general public.

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Christie: The PM 'who tried to destroy democracy'

PRIME Minister Perry Christie might go down in history as the prime minister “who attempted to destroy democracy” by allowing web-shops to “try to buy voters”, according to FNM leader Hubert Minnis.

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Dr. Porter not working for health ministry

CANCER Centre of the Bahamas managing director Dr Arthur Porter is not currently engaged with the Ministry of Health, a senior official confirmed yesterday.

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'Mergers' boost Fidelity funds' assets by $8m

RoyalFidelity Merchant Bank & Trust yesterday said it had used ‘mergers’ to increase the asset bases of its two oldest mutual funds by $8 million apiece, adding that a net $1 million subscriptions inflow into its equities fund indicated renewed demand for listed stocks.

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Top realtor firm says 2012 sales volumes up 14%

A prominent Bahamian real estate firm told Tribune Business yesterday that its 2012 sales volumes were up 14 per cent year-over-year, its president adding: “We have started 2013 on the right foot.”

Bahamas 'leaps and bounds' behind rivals on renewable energy

RIVAL Caribbean nations are “leaps and bounds ahead of the Bahamas” on renewable energy implementation, although one local provider is aiming to close the gap by investing in development of a trained installation workforce.

Bahamas ‘leaps and bounds’ behind rivals on renewable energy

RIVAL Caribbean nations are “leaps and bounds ahead of the Bahamas” on renewable energy implementation, although one local provider is aiming to close the gap by investing in development of a trained installation workforce.

RoyalFidelity targets $10-$15m for new fund as 'sales highlight'

RoyalFidelity Merchant Bank & Trust is aiming to grow its newly-launched mutual fund to $10-$15 million in assets under management by year-end, telling Tribune Business yesterday this would be the “sales highlight for 2013”.

AID sees record Xmas with 8.6% sales rise

AUTOMOTIVE Industrial Distributors (AID) yesterday said it had regained the momentum lost when fire destroyed its Wulff Road headquarters, as it comes off a record December performance where sales were up year-over-year by 8.6 per cent.

Shipyard adds eight graduates

Grand Bahama Shipyard (GBS) has added another eight new graduates, bringing to 46 the number of young Bahamians who have passed its rigorous training programme.

Satellite provider refunds 5% of base over axed service

A LEADING Bahamian satellite TV provider said it was in “wait and see” mode over the restoration of Direct TV’s US feed to some 500 account holders, confirming that the service was not officially authorised.

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Minister slams G-20's 'unprecedented assault' on financial industry

The Minister of Foreign Affairs has used a regional summit with the European Union (EU) to hit out at “the unprecedented assault” on the Bahamas’ financial services industry, arguing that the sector was subject to regulatory standards that matched those in developed countries.

Oceania dispute threatens Bahamas investor standing

THE Bahamas’ reputation as a prime destination for foreign direct investment (FDI) is being threatened by the dispute over the controversial Oceania Heights project, a homeowner at the devlopment believes.

Monday, January 28

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10.10pm - VOTERS in the gambling referendum have overwhelmingly rejected the legalisation of web shops and the establishment of a national lottery.

RBC's regional operation wins private bank award

Royal Bank of Canada’s (RBC) Caribbean Wealth Management business has been recognised as the ‘Caribbean Private Bank of the Year’ at the Citywealth International Financial Centre Awards, held in London.

Caribbean targets greater wellness tourism share

CARIBBEAN nations such as the Bahamas are moving to increasetheir share of the $40-$60 billion global health and wellness market, the region’s Spa Association leading the push by aiming to increase the sector’s visitor arrivals and revenues by as much as 10 per cent by 2015.



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Funeral service for Eddie Darville

FUNERAL services will be held for Eddison Emmanuel Darville, 71, who died suddenly at his Eastern Road home on Thursday afternoon, at 10am Wednesday at St Anne’s Anglican Church, Fox Hill. Interment will follow in St Anne’s Cemetery.

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OPINION: 'Vote Yes to expand Bahamian ownership'

In our 40th year of independence as a country, we as a free people remain on the outside of the lucrative gaming sector in the Bahamas.

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Obama: the man unveiled

THE speech may have been directed to a domestic United States audience, but in its boldness, its frankness and its inspirational quality, it was a speech to the citizens of the world.

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New dream for Miss Universe contestant Celeste

LOCAL Miss Universe contestant Celeste Marshall, who succeeded in making the competition’s top 20, is now in the running to be named Miss CHI 2013.

Halkitis rejects advice at country’s peril

MINISTER of State for Finance Michael Halkitis has thumbed his nose at former prime minister Hubert Ingraham, virtually telling him to mind his own business as the PLP are now in charge of the country’s finances.

The right way to make money

THERE has been much talk of late about boosting revenue collection and generation, no doubt spurred on by pressure from international credit rating institutions to address our considerable national deficit.

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Two killed in violent weekend

THE country’s murder count went up two notches over the weekend when two men were killed in two separate incidents.

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Marchers call for 'No' vote

DAYS after Vote Yes officials staged a massive rally in support of the regularisation of the numbers racket, Vote No campaigners marched in protest of the move on Bay Street ahead of today’s referendum.

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Man dragged 1,000 feet to death by car

A 60-year-old man became the country’s latest traffic fatality when he was hit by a car and then dragged nearly 1,000 feet by a second car early yesterday morning.

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'Put political allegiance aside and vote your conscience'

VOTE Yes coordinator Theresa Moxey Ingraham urged voters yesterday to put political allegiances aside and vote their conscience.

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FNM accuses police of double standards

THE opposition Free National Movement claims the police’s “aggressive action” against street vendors, and its hands-off posture with owners of illegal gambling shops, exposes the existence of two standards of law enforcement in the Bahamas.

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Damage to 'No' posters

VOTE yes supporters were yesterday blamed for destroying several vote no poster boards throughout New Providence.

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Time for voters to choose

TODAY, as thousands turn out to cast ballots in the highly anticipated referendum to regulate the numbers game, officials are reassuring voters that they expect a smooth process.

Bank deal targets top green energy 'hurdle'

A Bahamian renewable energy provider believes it has achieved an industry first through its financing tie-up with Commonwealth Bank, a move designed to overcome “the biggest hurdle” to the industry’s expansion.

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Bahamas faces 'disadvantage' if no FATCA IGA

The Bahamas would be “at a competitive disadvantage” if it chose not to comply with the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) via an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA), the Minister of Financial Services believes.

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Casino concerns over Gaming Board staff

The Gaming Board is moving to address Bahamian casino industry concerns over “a decline in the professionalism and performance quality” of some personnel.

Theft rates raise auto insurance costs 15-20%

Bahamian auto insurance premium costs are 15-20 per cent higher “across the board” due to a relatively high vehicle theft rate, one industry executive telling Tribune Business the situation was being exacerbated by government processes that were still “in the Stone Age”.

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Laing slams 'reckless, crazy' Gov't spending

The Government is using alleged commitments left behind by the former Ingraham administration as “cover for its reckless, crazy” spending since the May 2012 general election, an ex-FNM finance minister has charged.

Satellite provider refunds 5% of base over axed service

A LEADING Bahamian satellite TV provider said it was in “wait and see” mode over the restoration of Direct TV’s US feed to some 500 account holders, confirming that the service was not officially authorised.

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OPINION: Vote your conscience - but make sure you vote

TODAY’S referendum is another official opportunity for all citizens of our Bahamas to deepen our democracy and help to correct an age-old vice and an out-of-control national pastime.

Oceania homeowners ‘come out of the mud’

HOMEOWNERS embroiled in the long-standing dispute with developers at the controversial Oceania Heights project believe they have finally “come out of the mud” following their meeting with Deputy Prime Minister Philip Davis on Friday.

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Aruba edges out Bahamas

FREEPORT, Grand Bahama: For the third consecutive time, Aruba defeated the Bahamas, the last coming in the championship game to secure their berth as the representative of the English Caribbean Amateur Softball Federation (ECAST) in the World Championships in Cali, Colombia in June.

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BTC promotion 'a runaway success'

THE ‘Gimme 10’ promotion was a runaway success according to BTC, with $1.7 million in free texts, free phone calls and data give-aways.

CHAMBER VOICE: Making the most of what we have

WHILE registered voters in the Bahamas make their way to the polls today to decide whether or not to accept, and support, local gambling, businesses make similar decisions daily.

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CAFL heads into the final three games

Following a grueling regular season, the Commonwealth American Football League heads into its post-season for the final three games of the year.

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Powerhouses to duel it out

If the early meets on the track and field calendar are any indication, the high school track and field season is set to be another duel between a pair of BAISS powerhouses.

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McKenzie wins at the double

WHILE Ryan ‘Big Youth’ McKenzie continued his successive string of victories, former amateur Valentino McKenzie made a successful debut as they both won in different parts of the United States on Friday night.

Sunday, January 27

Making us a mockery

EDITOR, The Tribune.

Shipyard adds eight graduates

Grand Bahama Shipyard (GBS) has added another eight new graduates, bringing to 46 the number of young Bahamians who have passed its rigorous training programme.

Arbitration takes centre stage at BFSB's summit

Bahamian and international experts will be part of a featured panel at the upcoming International Business and Finance Summit (IBFS) that is being hosted by the Bahamas Financial Services Board (BFSB) in Bimini this weekend.

Law firm adds three partners

Callenders & Co has named three new partners, bringing the total number to eight between its two New Providence offices and Freeport .

Demand true ecomomic growth

EDITOR, The Tribune.

Gambling in the Bahamas

EDITOR, The Tribune.

OPINION: Bishop urges all Bahamians to vote



THE opposition Free National Movement claims the police’s “aggressive action” against street vendors, and its hands-off posture with owners of illegal gambling shops, exposes the existence of two standards of law enforcement in the Bahamas.

Saturday, January 26

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Police shoot man in face

A MAN is recovering in hospital after he was shot in the face by police.

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WEB SHOP workers fear for their jobs if the numbers racket is made legal.

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FNM leader Hubert Minnis yesterday cautioned Bahamian voters not to sign a “blank cheque” for the government at the polls on Monday.

Friday, January 25


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To gamble or not to gamble is the question

MONDAY is referendum day — to gamble or not to gamble. Bahamians are to decide whether government should close all webshops or declare them legal, then regulate and tax them.

The Christie administration stumbles coming out of the gate


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Believe in the Bahamas

HAVE you ever been in a relationship where the other person swore they cared about you and believed in you, but turned around and did things to break you down as a person?

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Christie 'will not be deterred'

PRIME Minister Perry Christie vowed that he will not be deterred by mounting criticism of the gaming referendum after The Nassau Guardian yesterday urged its readers to “vote no” in Monday’s referendum.

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Mistaken identity fear over police shooting

POLICE shot and killed a man in Abaco Wednesday night in what sources describe as a case of “mistaken identity.”

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‘Marchers did not break law’

ASSISTANT Police Commissioner Hulan Hanna, said yesterday “Vote Yes” supporters did not break the law on Wednesday when they marched in Rawson Square and therefore police could not and did not arrest them.

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Halkitis 'not in the league I play in'

FORMER Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham dismissed the Minister of State for Finance Michael Halkitis yesterday who had previously criticised him for his handling of the economy while he was Prime Minister from 2007 to 2012.

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'Ingraham talk is sour grapes'

PLP Chairman Bradley Roberts said that former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham has “zero credibility” when it comes to the gambling referendum and any remarks made by him should be viewed only as “political rancour and sour grapes”.

'It is a misrepresentation to say there are only four operators'

MORE than just “a limited number” of web-shop owners could apply for a license to operate if Monday’s gambling referendum passes with a majority “yes” vote. It is a “misrepresentation,” said Prime Minister Perry Christie, to believe there are only four operators.

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PM caught on canvas by artist

PRIME Minister Perry Christie yesterday acknowledged the need to provide opportunities for artistic talent to be remunerated.

Eddie Darville dies, age 71

EDDIE Darville, 71, of Eastern Road, Nassau, died yesterday afternoon after having lunch with his wife at their residence.

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Former PM angered by Yes march

FORMER Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham urged all Bahamians to vote “No” in Monday’s gambling referendum, stating that Wednesday’s march to the House of Assembly by the ‘Vote Yes’ campaign has made his previous position of “non-participation” in the process now “untenable.”

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Dealer: Sales 'up 30-40%overnight' if tax change

A new car dealer yesterday told Tribune Business that his sales would “go up 30-40 per cent overnight” if the Government would revert back to the industry’s old tax structure, adding that until that happened: “We’ll all be in trouble.”

Ferry targets 1,200 Bimini passengers

A direct ferry service from South Florida to Bimini is scheduled to start next month, a move the company believes will “open the doors” to the island by bring ing in as many as 1,200 passengers per week.

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BEC backs net billing over metering

The BAHAMAS Electricity Corporation (BEC) prefers net billing to net metering, its general manager yesterday pledging that the utility would work with the Government to implement the legislative reforms necessry to facilitate renewable energy growth.

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Businesses under $50k miss account keeping demands

Bahamian companies with an annual gross turnover of less than $50,000 have been exempted from new laws requiring firms to keep accounting records for five years, as this nation comes into line with the Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development’s (OECD) demands.

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Bahamas urged: 'Get serious' on tax penalties

Compliance will be “one of the greatest challenges” the Bahamas faces in implementing a Value-Added Tax (VAT) or some other form of tax reform, a leading accountant yesterday saying this nation needed to “get serious” about penalising offenders and generating better business data.

Assemblies of Brethren speak out against Yes Vote campaign

YET another religious group has come out against the upcoming gambling referendum.

Bank executive pushes energy price hedging

A SENIOR financial executive said yesterday that countries such as the Bahamas should look at hedging structures to reduce the impact of crude oil price fluctuations.

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Attempted murder charge withdrawn in shooting case

A MAN standing trial in Supreme Court on three counts of attempted murder has one less charge to contest after one the complainants withdrew the charge against him yesterday.

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Minnis delighted with Ingraham's 'no' vote pledge

FNM Leader Hubert Minnis said he is “delighted” with former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham’s announcement that he will vote “no” to both questions in next Monday’s gambling referendum.

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US students stage visit to Bahamas

A GROUP of 22 students and two chaperones from Drake University took advantage of a unique opportunity to get out of the classroom setting in Des Moines, Iowa and travel to the Bahamas.

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Couple plead guilty to false declaration

A MAN and his fiance; pleaded guilty in Magistrate’s Court yesterday to making a false declaration to a US Customs officer.

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'Criminal employees hurting Atlantis'

ATLANTIS employees engaging in criminal behaviour are hurting the hotel, according to Kerzner International (Bahamas) president and managing director George Markantonis.

Homes damaged in Irene fully occupied once more

THE National Emergency Management Agency has announced that the homes damaged or destroyed during Hurricane Irene in 2011 are now fully renovated and occupied.

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Family Island Regatta to mark 60th Exuma edition in grand style

THE landmark event on the local sloop sailing calendar plans to celebrate its 60th edition in grand style.

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Team Bahamas selected for cross country championships

THE Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations (BAAA) has selected the team of Veronica Bonimy, Holly Rolle and Jennaya Hield to represent the Bahamas at the North American and Central American and Caribbean (NACAC) Cross Country Championships this weekend in Mandeville, Jamaica.

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'Big Youth' to open year with his first pro fight

RYAN ‘Big Youth’ McKenzie, who had three impressive victories to keep his undefeated record alive last year, will open up the new year with his first professional boxing match tonight at the Turning Stone Resort & Casino in Verona, New York.

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Big Red Machine improves record to 8-2

By BRENT STUBBSTHE Big Red Machine senior boys got a balanced scoring attack with four players in double figures as they steamrolled past the visiting Jordan Prince Williams Falcons at St Augustine’s College yesterday.

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FNM wanted VAT in 'two-three years'

The Free National Movement (FNM) had planned to implement a Value Added Tax (VAT) within “two to three years” if it had been re-elected in May 2012, a former Cabinet Minister yesterday saying it would “not have been fooling around with a gaming referendum”.

'Swept under rug': wrecked autos facilitate crime

Bahamian auto dealers yesterday urged Customs to crack down on wrecked and damaged car imports, warning that they were facilitating high levels of vehicle theft.

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Fuel charge is 60-70% of BEC consumer bills

THE Bahamas Electricity Corporation (BEC) is spending more than $350 million per year on fuel supplies, its general manager telling Tribune Business yesterday that the fuel charge on consumer bills currently accounts for 60-70 per cent of the total.

Thursday, January 24

Security forces should have voted yes

At the advanced poll yesterday, I hope the security forces voted yes.
It would have been in their best interest to do so.

Potcake helpers

EDITOR, The Tribune.

Dont's believe the lie

If the count of those persons employed in the illegal web shop industry gathered in front of Parliament . . .

Answering the economic argument

ON Monday January 7, Philip Galanis, a coordinator of Vote Yes Bahamas, used his weekly column to lobby for a “yes” vote in the upcoming gambling referendum.

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DJ of the week: DJ Mayday

Who is DJ Mayday you may ask? He is currently a devoted DJ who travels the world, deejaying for some of the biggest clubs, corporate events and weddings.

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New release from Chris “Sketch” Carey

BAHAMIAN artist Chris “Sketch” Carey is out of the blocks early in 2013 with a new release.

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Bahamian artist crafts real 'reborn' baby dolls

AT FIRST glance Lorna Miller’s silicone babies look real.

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Dancers score big with Caribbean Slide flash Mob

IT STARTED out as a fun dance created to express Bahamian and Caribbean pride. It turned into a charitable project that benefitted two children’s homes in the Bahamas.

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Ingraham: I'll vote 'no' in gambling referendum

Former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham has said he will vote 'no' in the upcoming gambling referendum.

Response to the Yes campaign

Many wonder what will it take for Bahamians to see through this “smoke screen” exercise of deception by those advocating the “yes” vote in Monday’s Referendum?

PM should muzzle Roberts

PLP Chairman Bradley Roberts should be muzzled by PLP leader and PM Perry G Christie for publicly urging Bahamians to vote yes in the referendum on legalising web cafes. He had declared that he was speaking on behalf of the PLP.

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Munroe: Voting yes is electing an alternative government

THE gambling referendum that Bahamians are about to entertain could be the election of an alternative government, Dr Miles Munroe said last night to members at Bahamas Faith Ministries International on Carmichael Road.

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Residents speak up in support of Sandals' Emerald Bay resort

SANDALS loves Exuma and Exuma loves Sandals.

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Children tell the story of Majority Rule Day

MAJORITY Rule Day was celebrated at a special assembly at Ridgeland Primary School held under the theme: “Let the Children tell the story”.

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Cash: Bell trying to frighten people into voting yes

FNM chairman Darron Cash yesterday accused Minister of State for National Security Keith Bell of attempting to “frighten” people into voting yes in the gaming referendum.

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'Christie shows no confidence in Bahamas'

FNM chairman Darron Cash said Prime Minister Perry Christie has again demonstrated his lack of confidence in the Bahamian people by bringing in another group of foreign consultants to advise Bahamians.

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Witness tells of shooting

A WOMAN told a court yesterday how the car she and her nephew were in was fired upon.

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According to me

BEGINNING tomorrow, Sharon Turner, the former deputy director of Government Information under the Ingraham administration, begins her weekly column ‘According to Me – Sharon T’ in The Tribune.

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RBDF welcomes midshipmen into officer's corps

Midshipmen Danielle Morley, Lavan Paul and Ladario Brown of the Royal Bahamas Defence Force are the newest addition to the Officer’s Corps after successfully completing Naval Officer Training in England.

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Jury to return tomorrow for Earth Village raid trial

THE nine-member jury hearing evidence in the Earth Village robbery trial return to Supreme Court tomorrow morning.

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Divorce case sent back to supreme court

THE COURT of Appeal has ordered that the property hearing of a divorced couple be sent back to the Supreme Court.

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McPhee: Those in gaming world are not criminals

WEBSHOP operators, their employees, and Bahamians who participate in webshop gaming are not “criminals” and pastors who dub them so should “ask for forgiveness,” Pastor Philip McPhee said yesterday.

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PM: March 'a wonderful expression of democracy'

YESTERDAY’S march up Bay Street by webshop employees and their vote “yes” supporters was a “wonderful expression of the democracy” in the country, Prime Minister Perry Christie said yesterday morning.

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Christian council: March made mockery of Bahamas

YESTERDAY’S “Vote Yes” march made a “mockery” of the Bahamas’ democracy by allowing “illegal” businesses to march through Bay Street, said the Christian Council.

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Halkitis hits out at Ingraham over criticism of deficit

MICHAEL Halkitis, State Finance Minister, yesterday criticised former Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham over his criticism that the government’s deficit projection was too high.

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Hundreds of webshop staff take to streets

HUNDREDS of webshop employees took to the streets yesterday morning to demonstrate the number of persons who could be out of a job with a majority “no” vote in Monday’s gambling referendum.

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DEVELOPING: Police shoot man dead in Abaco

POLICE say they shot and killed a 35-year-old man in The Mudd community in Abaco last night.

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Bahamas can become Americas' '21st century Arbitration hub'

The Bahamas can become the “21st century International Arbitration seat for the Americas”, a leading practitoner said yesterday, adding that it would take a five-year process for it to establish itself as such.

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Flowers: Web shop numbers 'don't mean a hill of beans'

A leading web shop operator yesterday said the industry’s current financial numbers “don’t mean a hill of beans”, arguing that the sector’s performance would change markedly in a regulated environment,

Island Luck chief open to 49% IPO

A major web shop operator said yesterday he would do everything in his power to ensure that a gaming industry initial public offering (IPO) becomes a reality if the industry is legalised, telling Tribune Business he would be willing to offer as much as a 49 per cent stake in his own enterprise.

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Tobacco smuggling: Bill to recover 80% of revenue losses

The Government yesterday estimated that it will recover 80 per cent, or $20 million, of the revenues it loses annually to tobacco smuggling via its Excise Stamp initiative, and disclosed it was looking at similar measures to combat illegal alcohol imports.

Living a life of love

As we approach Valentine’s Day, we are called to re-assess our position on the topic of love. What does it mean to live a life of love?

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Ingraham Gov't 'maxed out' short-term credit through 79% increase

The Ingraham administration demitted office in May 2012 after leaving all the Government’s short-term credit facilities “maxed out”, a Cabinet Minister saying borrowing of this nature rose by 78.7 per cent during its five-year term.

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VAT 'less clean' to oversee than Customs duties

A Value Added Tax (VAT) will be “less clean” for the Government to oversee due to its several thousand collection points, a leading Bahamian accountant yesterday describing its administration as the “biggest challenge”.

Banks says it, clients not hit by withholding

Bank of The Bahamas International yesterday said neither it nor its merchant clients will not be subject to the ‘28 per cent withholding tax’ that has begun to impact credit card transactions with firms who did not report their non-US status by December 31, 2012.

Employee retention is key summit focus

A human capital specialist from Deloitte Consulting will be a featured speaker at the Bahamas Financial Services Board’s (BFSB) upcoming International Business & Finance Summit (IBFS) in Bimini.

URCA rejects Cable's basic TV concerns

Cable Bahamas’ argument that its basic cable television service should not be included within its Universal Service Obligation (USO) has been rejected by regulators, although they clarified that the latter offering need not be more than six channels.

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Well loved lay reader laid to rest

ALTHOUGH short in physical stature, many Long Island natives knew Larry Alfred Albury as a “giant of a man.” It was December, last year, when Mr Albury flew into Nassau for surgery for his recently discovered cancer.

Greek Orthodox church continues ancient tradition

GREEK Orthodox churches all over the world, including the Bahamas recently celebrated their Epiphany service, which is commemorated every year on January 6. On that day, the Annunciation of the Greek Orthodox Church in the Bahamas celebrated the baptism of Jesus Christ.

Calvary Deliverance Council installs new senior pastor

The executive board of Calvary Deliverance Church announced that Pastor James Newry will be officially installed as the church’s senior pastor January 28. The service, which will be held under the theme “Building on a Legacy”, will be presided over by outgoing senior pastor Bishop V. G. Clarke.

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Marathon Bahamas example of the 'business of sports'

MINISTER of Youth, Sports and Culture Dr Daniel Johnson called Marathon Bahamas an example of the “business of sports,” a movement which looks to transcend the Bahamas to a regional and global sporting powerhouse.

Sports in brief

THE Bahamas Bodybuilding and Fitness Federation (BBFF) has announced that it has granted Dawnita Fry and Jimmy Norious the opportunity to compete in the prestigious Arnold Amateur slated to be held in Columbus, Ohio, February 28 to March 3.

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BAAA president on stadium progress

After the promise by the Government of the Bahamas to have the two Thomas A Robinson Track and Field Stadiums ready in time for the Carifta Games, Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations president Mike Sands said he’s pleased with the progress he has seen so far.

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Young tennis ace looks to continue doubles success

THE Middle Eastern portion of the International Tennis Federation’s circuit continues for young tennis ace Justin Roberts.

Wednesday, January 23

Rapper on the rise

BAHAMIAN rapper Shon Millz could fill the Thomas A Robinson stadium three times if it was down to internet video views alone.

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Bahamas eyes a spot for for the World Games

WHEN the ECAST Softball Tournament gets underway on Thursday in Grand Bahama, the Bahamas will be playing against three other countries for the one spot to go to the World Games in Cali, Colombia, in July.

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Goin' back to Kenya

After a six-month sting in Nairobi, Kenya, which ended with an injury that prevented him from achieving his ultimate goal of qualifying for the 2012 Olympic Games, Oneil Williams is returning to resume his training for a spot on the Bahamas team to the International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF) World Championships in Moscow, Russia, in August.

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Record numbers in Marathon Bahamas race weekend

WITH record numbers posted all around, Veronica Duncanson said the organisers were more than thrilled with the participation in the Marathon Bahamas 2013 Sunshine Insurance Race Weekend.

Even PM Christie fears the ‘no’ vote

ALTHOUGH Prime Minister Christie is desperate that his government not be seen to be influencing the gambling vote, he himself – with every recent pronouncement – has made it clear that he fears a “no” vote.

PM should refrain from abusive language

Prime Minister Perry Christie blew a gasket when he responded to questions posed to him by The Tribune concerning accusations made by Free National Movement (FNM) Leader Dr. Hubert Minnis (Killarney).

Strange things are happening here

Some strange things are happening in our Bahamas. I have listened to all of the pros and cons of what is about to be forced on Bahamians.

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Minister urges vigilance from aviation security

MINISTER of State for Aviation Hope Strachan urged industry leaders to be on the lookout for vulnerabilities in the country’s security systems as she opened a five-day aviation security training course at Super Clubs Breezes.

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Guide 'almost' thought robber was part of tour

THE tour guide who took nine cruise ship visitors on Segways through a trail in Earth Village said it never crossed her mind that they were about to be robbed when a man walked out of the bush with a gun.

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Death of elderly man investigated by police

POLICE are investigating the circumstances surrounding the death of an elderly man yesterday afternoon.

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PM: Flowers would not suffer any negative impact if 'no' vote wins

A MOVE by FML Group of Companies CEO Craig Flowers to close down his web shops in the event of a No referendum victory is a private decision, Prime Minister Perry Christie said yesterday.

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Developing world's growing middle-class 'could boost economies'

THE International Labour Organisation said the emergence of a growing middle-class in the developing world over the next few years could give economies in these areas a boost.

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Canon Tynes celebrates 25th anniversary of ordination

MEMBERS of the Parish of St Barnabas Church, along with Anglicans from around the diocese, will celebrate the 25th anniversary of the ordination to the priesthood of Canon Basil Leon Tynes with a Solemn High Mass on Friday January 25 at 7pm.

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The beauty of art and nature at BNT art for the parks festival.

AN ELITE group of talented Bahamian artists will exhibit their works at Abaco Beach Resort during the Art for the Parks Festival, January 25-27, 2013.

Gambling referendum: What are the options going forward?

FOR some, this whole gambling referendum controversy is a storm in a tea pot, a mountain from a molehill, a monumental waste of money, time and energy, and so much ado about nothing.

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Family of former Turks and Caicos Premier calling for his release

THE Family of embattled former Turks and Caicos premier Michael Misick has renewed its call for his release from a Brazilian prison.

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UPDATED: Thousands of people take to Bay Street.

Thousands of Vote Yes campaigners in a march on parliament in support of yes vote in the upcoming referendum.

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Party announced for new Andros BTC store

THE townspeople of Nicholls Town, Andros have been encouraged “celebrate and party hearty” at the ribbon cutting and Grand Opening of the new Bahamas Telecommunications Company store on Saturday January 26.

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Gambling - a succinct biblical perspective

THE dictionary defines gambling as “to bet money on the outcome of a game, contest, or other event,” “to play a game of chance for money or other stakes.”

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Hard work pays off for team player Keshla

HARD work has paid off for one worker who has been named Employee of the Year 2012.

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Man sentenced to three years for drug offences

A MAN was sentenced to spend three years in Her Majesty’s Prison after being convicted in Magistrate’s Court on drug related charges.

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PM: Bahamas needs to return to its strong sense of community

THE Bahamas needs to return to its strong sense of church community, says Prime Minister Perry Christie.

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Advance poll: Less than half turn out

LESS THAN 50 per cent of persons registered to participate in the advance poll for the gaming referendum voted on Monday, Acting Parliamentary Commissioner Sherlyn Hall yesterday.

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Christie: 'No' vote will lead to more taxes

PRIME Minister Perry Christie said Bahamians will likely face more taxes to generate revenue for the country should they say no to legalised web shop gaming on January 28.

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Poll: Yes to lottery, no to webshops

FIFTY per cent of the Bahamians who answered a gambling survey yesterday in downtown Nassau, said they would support a national lottery being established.

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Ingraham hits out at government spending

FORMER Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham said Monday that the Bahamas’ “cash flow” has not been as “tight” as it is today since the terrorist attacks on the World Trade Centre in 2001. He was quoting a senior treasury official.

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Flowers 'should have shut down business'

CRAIG Flowers, who heads the FML Group, should have shut down his business “a long time ago”, according to the Save Our Bahamas Vote “No” campaign.

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South African gaming consultants in town

THE South African consultants hired by the government to advise on the new casino regulations, web shops and a national lottery were yesterday in New Providence, confirmed Prime Minister Perry Christie.

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Vote Yes campaign seeks to put 'a public face' on workers in the industry

IN an effort to demonstrate the number of Bahamians who could be out of a job with a majority “no” vote in the January 28 gambling referendum, more than a thousand web-shop employees will be marching onto Parliament, today.

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‘Web shop regulator’ already under-funded

The Gaming Board, which will be expected to regulate a legalised webshop industry and/or National Lottery, has been “under-funded” for many years, with requests for additional monies falling on deaf ears.

FATCA regulations ‘push’ Bahamas in Gov’t deal heading

The Bahamas will likely see “a bit of a push” to comply with the US Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) through an Intergovernmental Agreement (IGA), as this seems to impose less onerous reporting requirements on its core wealth management business.

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‘Devastating effect’ from 28% credit card withholding

The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Confederation’s (BCCEC) chairman yesterday warned that new US laws implementing a potential ‘28 per cent withholding tax’ on credit card transactions could have a “devastating impact” on the private sector, as one business told Tribune Business it had seen some $20,000 in payments held back.

Over 40% night growth makes Bahamas top Expedia market

EXPEDIA, the world’s largest online travel company, generated more than 140,000 room nights for Bahamian hotels in 2012, a company executive telling Tribune Business this country was its “fastest growing market” last year.

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Aviation chief ‘most concerned’ on B’air policy

A leading Bahamian airline executive yesterday said he was “most concerned” about the lack of direction and confusing policy statements by government officials over plans for the aviation sector and Bahamasair’s development.

Tourism set to grow religion’s 10-15% group market share

THE Ministry of Tourism is committed to greater investment and involvement in religious tourism, its director-general saying it aimed to grow the sector’s 10-15 per cent share of the Bahamas’ overall group business.

Scotia branch to be ‘small business hub’

Scotiabank (Bahamas) says its $1.3 million Carmichael Road branch will “serve as a major small business hub” in New Providence’s fastest growing community.

Sandals readies for Baha Mar’s arrival

SANDALS executives said yesterday that while they expected some staff turnover when the $2.6 billion Baha Mar resort becomes operational in late 2014, it was confident its strong brand power would sustain the business.

DPM to host key Oceania meeting

Deputy Prime Minister Philip Davis will host this Friday’s meeting between the feuding developers and homeowners at Exuma’s Oceania Heights development, a sign that the Government may be moving seriously to broker a resolution to the dispute.

Tuesday, January 22

Bradley Roberts and his ‘flip-floppers’

“BIG, BAD Brad” was at his political double-speak again this week to the great amusement of Bahamians, who have good memories and who don’t put much store in what he says at the best of times.

"It Takes A Village" family sitcom set for cable debut

BAHAMIAN Entrepreneur Moya Thompson is taking her talents to new heights this year.

American Idol is back

BASED on the premiere night of American Idol, it looks as if season twelve of the singing competition is going to be filled with “scripted drama”.

The naked truth about pornography: a psychological perspective

A good number of Generation Xers may confess to having watched erotica at some point or the other.

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Thousands make it to the finish line

  THOUSANDS of participants gathered on Church Street wearing pink on the weekend for the Susan G Komen Bahamas Race For The Cure. Some people ran, others walked and jogged in honour of loved ones who passed away from breast cancer.

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Grand Bahama models battle it out

A NEW modelling competition will give one Bahamian woman the opportunity to be named the new face of Mango Tree Media.

Choices and consequences: Look before you leap

Many of us spend countless hours pondering what do to about various situations in our lives. What kind of jobs or careers we should pursue, whether or not to start a family or where we should live.

Reconsidering rape and patriarch

In the wake of the rape of the young medical student in Delhi, India, it would seem that patriarchy has really institutionalised violence against people perceived as weaker, this would include women and children.

Govt urged: Push Port, Devco over Freeport marketing

A prominent attorney yesterday urged the Government to require that the Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA) and DevCo form a marketing organisation to promote Freeport to international investors, arguing that both had ‘pocketed’ millions in tax savings without providing something in return.

Thousands vote in advance gambling polls

THOUSANDS of people cast their vote in the advanced polls yesterday, one week before in the highly anticipated gambling referendum.

Thousands vote in advance gambling polls

THOUSANDS of people cast their vote in the advanced polls yesterday, one week before in the highly anticipated gambling referendum.

Robert Kennedy Jr: Clifton oil spills 'criminal'

BAHAMIANS were yesterday urged to take “citizen action” to preserve the country’s precious underwater resources.

Religious tourism experience for cultural bonding in the Bahamas

THE 2013 Mid-Winter Board Meeting of the Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc was held at the Wyndham Nassau Resort and Crystal Palace Casino with Minister of Tourism Obie Wilchcombe speaking January 14 on the opportunities Religious tourism offers for Bahamians.

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200 gallons of oil spilled into Freeport Harbour

MORE than 200 gallons of oil were spilled into Freeport Harbour early Sunday morning, according to the Ministry of Environment.

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Trial delayed of man facing three attempted murder charges

THE Supreme Court trial of a man accused of trying to murder a mother, son and nephew, has been delayed as pre-trial legal issues have arisen.

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School of agriculture for North Andros

IN collaboration with the College of the Bahamas, the government is taking steps to establish a school of agriculture in North Andros.

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Operation Potcake will be annual event

OPERATION Potcake will be an annual event from now on, Prime Minister Perry Christie has announced.

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Canadian woman tells court of 'traumatic experience' in robbery

A CANADIAN woman recalled her “traumatic experience” of lying in dirt and being robbed at gun point with other tourists and her tour guide in a brazen daylight robbery during an eco-tour of Earth Village.

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Vote yes campaigners claim poll victory

VOTE yes campaigners yesterday turned out in droves at the advanced polling stations ahead of the January 28 gambling referendum.

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PLP Chairman's call for yes vot 'shocking'

ONE Save Our Bahamas Vote “No” representative called PLP Chairman Bradley Roberts’ call for Bahamians to vote “yes” on the gambling referendum, “shocking.”

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Disability council 'would accept gaming donation'

THE president of the Bahamas National Council of Disabilities said the group would be willing to accept a donation from one major gaming operator, following an offer made during a live radio broadcast.

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FNM Chairman praises PLP MP for 'truth on referendum'

FNM Chairman Darron Cash praised Dr Andre Rollins yesterday for being “the first PLP to tell the truth” as it relates to the January 28 referendum, but said he suspects Dr Rollins will be “whipped back” in line by his party very soon.

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Former PM says gambling vote 'simply an opinion poll'

FORMER Prime Minister Hubert Ingraham said yesterday that the upcoming vote over legalized gambling is simply an “opinion poll” and that the questions being asked do not give voters the power to change the law.

GB Power capital raising ends $19m ‘current deficit’

Grand Bahama Power Company’s (GBPC) successful $32 million preference share issue will eliminate a $19.205 million deficit that previously existed between its current assets and liabilities, with its net income performance already showing the benefits of its revised tariff structure.

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AML chief ‘bit frustrated’ at Carl’s Jr wait

AML Foods chief executive yesterday admitted he was “a little frustrated” at the wait for construction approvals for its first Carl’s Jr outlet, while disclosing that store upgrades to its existing franchise would account for $500,000 of its upcoming $1.8 million capital expenditure programme.

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Mentoring initiative to combat 70% small business fail rate

The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Confederation (BCCEC) yesterday said its Small Business Mentorship Programme aimed to save jobs and improve “the chance of success” for entrepreneurs in a sector that has a 70 per cent ‘failure rate’.

AML: Semi-annual dividend ‘next step in our progression’

AML Foods yesterday said it was aiming to further reduce a key expenses line to the “mid-27 per cent range”, while disclosing to Tribune Business that it was increasing dividend payments to a regular semi-annual frequency.

BTC promotion hands out $1.7m

The Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) gave away $1.7 million in free texts, phone calls, and data during its ‘Gimme 10’ pre-paid customer appreciation promotion that ended on January 4.

Big Game enjoys 20% room revenue growth

THE Bimini Big Game Club enjoyed a 20 per cent room revenue increase in 2012, its general manager said yesterday, telling Tribune Business that the resort was looking forward to a busy 2013.

Port agrees ‘framework’ for GB Power regulation

The Grand Bahama Power Company (GBPC) has signed a ‘Regulatory Framework’ agreement with the Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA) to govern how it will be supervised, with the former’s majority shareholder set to base its Caribbean regional headquarters in Freeport.

Bahamas must ‘keep air fare credit open’

The Ministry of Tourism’s director-general said yesterday that its new marketing campaign, coupled with other initiatives, should ease the Bahamas’ reliance on Air Fare credits, while acknowledging that until then “we have to keep the shop open”.

Monday, January 21

The Necessity for Tax Reform

EDITOR, The Tribune.

Considerations and implications of the upcoming gaming referendum

AS WE go to the polls to decide on whether we will support the regulation and taxation of web shop gaming and/or the establishment of a national lottery, as chairman for the Gaming Board of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas, I wish to share the following considerations and implications of the upcoming gaming referendum.

Vote no, save our Bahamas

On Monday, January 7, Philip Galanis, a co-ordinator of Vote Yes Bahamas, used his weekly column to lobby for a “yes” vote in the upcoming gambling referendum.

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Shot dead outside his own home

DISTRAUGHT family members in Grand Bahama yesterday hit out at the rise in “senseless crime” after a Cash For Gold employee became the island’s first homicide of the year.

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Referendum 'to deepen democracy'

AMIDST heated debate about the validity of the gambling referendum, Attorney General Allyson Maynard-Gibson claims it is an attempt to deepen democracy and is no different from the one held a decade ago.

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Roberts hits out at Minnis 'flip-flop'

PROGRESSIVE Liberal Party Chairman Bradley Roberts believes Free National Movement leader Leader Dr Hubert Minnis to be “double-minded” and lacking in credibility as he accused the opposition leader of changing his words to Bahamians concerning the upcoming gambling referendum.

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PM welcomes Kennedy Jr.

PRIME Minister Perry Christie used the weekend visit of Robert F Kennedy Jr to emphasise the importance of the bilateral relationship between the Bahamas and the United States.

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Hurricane Sandy damage adds up to more than $700M

HURRICANE Sandy wrought more than $700 million in damage throughout the country, according to government estimates.

Operation Potcake continues

I would first like to express my appreciation for the recent article titled, Gunman Hold Up Potcake Helpers published on the cover page of The Big T on the 19th of January.

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Operation Potcake team stays strong after robbery

MEMBERS of the Operation Potcake team targeted by armed robbers last week said the incident did not spoil their appreciation for the warmth and support shown by the Bahamian people as a whole.

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'No union protest at hirings'

MANAGEMENT officials at the National Insurance Board dismissed claims that a sickout took place last week due to industrial unrest following recent managerial hirings in NIB’s prescription drug plan.

BISX-listed firm’s affiliate in $75.5m ‘discrepancy’

There is a $75.5 million discrepancy over the sum allegedly held by a BISX-listed firm’s broker/dealer affiliate for a claimed multinational fraud, Tribune Business can reveal, with regulators having seized computers and a server from its downtown Nassau offices.

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Hotels’ ‘cash flow’ fears on 28% credit card withholding

The Bahamas Hotel and Tourism Association (BHTA) is giving “the utmost priority” to resolving Washington’s requirements that US credit card

IDB: Gov’t estimates Sandy costs at $703m

The Government has estimated that Hurricane Sandy caused $702.8 million worth of damage when it struck the Bahamas last October, although one former finance minister said the figure seemed “extremely high”.

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Working ‘feverishly’ on EU obligations after tariff cut miss

The Government is working “feverishly” to bring the Bahamas into compliance with its commitments to the European Union (EU) under the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), having missed deadlines for the first two rounds of import tariff cuts.

Over 100 companies apply, certified on roads compensation

The number of Bahamian companies applying for, and certified to obtain, relief from the Government’s roadworks compensation programme has exceeded 100 on both counts, a key Ministry of Finance official has revealed.

No matching Customs duty fall from VAT

Wall Street is not anticipating that the introduction of a Value-Added Tax (VAT) will lead to a matching drop in revenues generated from Customs Duties, a prominent Bahamian accountant believes.

Leaving webshops ‘illegal’ undermines financial status

The Bahamas’ status as well-regulated financial services jurisdiction will be undermined if webshop gaming is allowed to persist as an illegal activity, the Gaming Board’s chairman warned yesterday.

CIBC FirstCarib executive to address energy prices

CIBC FirstCaribbean’s director and head of its client solutions group, Martin Peichl, will speak on ‘Controlling Fuel Costs in the Current Climate’ this Thursday at the 13th Annual Caribbean Energy Conference.

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US ends Bahamas winning streak

AFTER three wins for the Bahamas against Barbados, Austria and the “International” team, the United States of America proved too strong for the Bahamas tennis team in the final day’s play off for first place, overcoming them by three matches to two.

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Clean sweep for Eight Mile

IT was a clean sweep for the Eight Mile Rock Bluejays, the Bishop Michael Eldon Warriors, the Tabernacle Falcons and the Sir Jack Hayward Wildcats as they carried all four titles to Grand Bahama over their Government Secondary Schools Sports Association’s rivals over the weekend at the Banker’s Field at the Baillou Hills Sporting Complex.

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Three course records set on race weekend

The 2013 Sunshine Insurance Race Weekend saw three new course records being set. 

CHAMBER VOICE: Don’t be dictated to by workplace culture

As you move from one company to another, there are some noticeable differences between organisations that are very formal versus those which are more casual and relaxed.

Saturday, January 19

Cuban man goes missing after day trip to Andros

THE family of a missing Cuban man is appealing to members of the public for any information that will help locate him.

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VOLUNTEERS who travelled to the Bahamas to help with the Operation Potcake spay and neuter programme were held up at gunpoint and robbed.

Friday, January 18

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$1,000 for first Bahamian to finish

AS THE countdown continues to Marathon Bahamas 2013, Glen Bain, a Bahamian businessman and distance runner, says he wants to see the title stay at home this year.

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Relay team ready to race

MORE than 150 RBC employees will participate in the 2013 Sunshine Insurance race weekend.

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Time to pay up or go to jail for attorney

AN ATTORNEY’S two week extension to repay nearly $100,000 she stole from a former client is up and a two-year prison term could follow if she has failed to make full restitution.

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Griffin seeks more money for social services to help pay people's bills

SOCIAL Services Minister Melanie Griffin said it is likely that her ministry will request more money from the government to cover increased requests for assistance with electricity and rent payments.

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‘High crime levels could ruin the tourist industry’

THE country’s high crime levels could “ruin” the tourism industry, Prime Minister Perry Christie said yesterday afternoon.

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Deputy PM in tour of new $14M hospital

ON Wednesday, Deputy Prime Minister and minister responsible for public works, Philip “Brave” Davis, toured the $14 million Georgetown hospital in Exuma, which could be open by year-end following the completion of construction at the end of June.

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Second phase of Operation Potcake under way

THE second phase of Operation Potcake was launched yesterday with yet another steady stream of dog owners bringing in their pets for free sterilisation.

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Brazilian smuggling ring uses Bahamas as route to US

BRAZILIAN migrants paid $16,000 a person to be smuggled 10,000 miles around the world to the United States via Nassau and Freeport.

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Mitchell threat to human smugglers

FOREIGN Affairs Minister Fred Mitchell warned those Bahamians who might be involved in a human smuggling ring that if they are caught, the “full weight of the law” will fall upon them.

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Prosecutor seeks to restrict case coverage

THE lead prosecutor in a high profile retrial murder case believes the press is subject to the rules of any normal citizen in a democracy and should not breach the laws in the name of investigative journalism.

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Thompson 'moved at own request'

THE reassignment of former Immigration Director Jack Thompson came at his own request, insisted Foreign Affairs Minister Fred Mitchell yesterday.

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Minister says he has no knowledge of appointments

NATIONAL Insurance Board staff were up in arms yesterday over the appointment of Labour Minister Shane Gibson’s close relative to a managerial position in the organisation, The Tribune understands.

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Contractor earns $5-$6m from ‘way of the future’

A Bahamian contractor yesterday said he had used an alternative construction method to build $5-$6 million worth of homes in the past two years, reducing client costs by 20-30 per cent through “the way of the future”.

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Commercial court can become reality ‘within one year’

The Bahamas could have a functioning commercial court within a year of the Cabinet deciding to establish it, a senior QC told Tribune Business yesterday, adding that such an investment “would more than pay for itself in a very short time period”.

Contractors Bill ‘next hot topic’ after gaming

The pending Contractors Bill will become “the next hot topic” in the Bahamas once the gaming referendum is over, a leading industry executive said yesterday, pledging to get the legislation to Parliament by April.

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BREA chief: ‘I can’t explain’ Stamp exemption’s importance

The private sector is developing suggested amendments to the Stamp Act and first-time home buyer exemption “on the basis” that the latter will be extended beyond June 30, a leading developer yesterday saying he “can’t begin to explain” how important that is.

Homeowners Association ‘solution’ for Oceania

Control of the controversial Oceania Heights project should be handed over to a self-governing Homeowners Association, one purchaser yesterday saying this would help “clear up” all disputed issues and enable the development to “become what it should be”.

Sports in brief

VOLLEYBALL action continued with two men’s games last evening.

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Bahamas beats Austria to face US today in final

AFTER recording wins over Barbados and the “International” team on the first two days, the Bahamas pulled off its third victory in a row to beat the seeded Austrian team 3-2 in the Bahamas (IC) International Tennis Doubles event at Breezes. 

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Rivals New Providence, Grand Bahama in softball showdown

ANOTHER version of the New Providence versus Grand Bahama rivalry is all set to take place this weekend at the Baillou Hills Sporting Complex when the Ministry of Education hosts the Government Secondary Schools Sports Association vs the Grand Bahama Secondary Schools Athletic Association’s Softball Showdown.

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$1,000 prize for first Bahamian to cross marathon finish line

AS the countdown continues to Marathon Bahamas 2013, Bahamian businessman and distance runner Glen Bain says he wants to see the Marathon Bahamas title stay at home this year. 

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Runners get set for Marathon Bahamas

As time starts to expire for registration, organisers have been more than pleased with the numbers expected to compete at the fourth annual Sunshine Insurance Marathon Bahamas this weekend.

Thursday, January 17

More money

In these challenging economic times, we must all remember that a “yes” when we vote for the referendum will have the positive effect of putting more money in our treasury.

Gambling referendum chaos

The Gambling Referendum has left much to be desired.

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Real men fix their dogs

ON the heels of the wildly successful Operation Potcake, the Bahamas Humane Society intends to launch a new campaign called “Real men fix their dogs”.

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Sandals Exuma talks 'fruitful'

GEORGETOWN, Exuma - Sandals’ talks with the government over the future of its Emerald Bay resort have been “fruitful”, the property’s General Manager Jeremy Mutton said yesterday, adding that first quarter bookings are up over last year.

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Delay in drug case ruling

A MAGISTRATE’S ruling in the drug case of a contractor and his girlfriend was delayed by two weeks because three trial transcripts did not arrive on time.

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Suspect: Don't send me to maximum security

A MAN, claimed to have murdered his ex-girlfriend and attempted to kill a man during the attack, asked a Magistrate during his arraignment yesterday not to send him to the maximum security at Her Majesty’s Prison.

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Delay in ZNS salary payout

BROADCASTING Corporation Chairman Edwin Lightbourne warned ZNS staff on Wednesday that there could be delays in their salary payments at “certain” bank accounts.

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Police walkabout aims to tackle crime

DESPITE their best efforts to fight crime, police yesterday admitted that they continue to struggle with armed robberies and house break-ins.

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Christie dismisses 'Jackass' claim

PRIME Minister Perry Christie said he will not allow the FNM to “misrepresent” the position of the government and accused the party of “shamelessly trying to exploit” the gambling referendum.

Number houses will not close

NUMBER Houses will no longer be required to close temporarily if the public agrees to regularise web shop gaming on January 28, Theresa Moxey Ingraham, lead spokesperson for the “Vote Yes” campaign, said yesterday.

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Minnis says web shops funded PLP

IN URGING Bahamians to vote “no” on the gambling referendum, FNM leader Hubert Minnis accused illegal gambling houses of funding the government’s election campaigns.

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$14m Georgetown hospital could be open by end of year

GEORGETOWN, Exuma – The $14 million Georgetown hospital could be open by year-end following the completion of construction at the end of June, Deputy Prime Minister and minister responsible for public works, Philip “Brave” Davis said yesterday.

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Catholic priest dies of massive heart attack

THE Caribbean is in mourning the loss of a great priest, lawyer and civil servant in the person of Fr Henry Charles.

Panic at numbers house amid fears of police shutdown

PANIC broke out an Island Luck numbers house location yesterday after patrons and employees believed they were about to be subject to a police enforced shutdown.

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Botched web shop heist prompted extra patrols

THE POLICE yesterday said they have decided to increase their patrols and community presence in response to the botched web shop heist over the weekend.

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Man convicted of Atlantis shooting jailed for 15 years

A MAN convicted of trying to kill two Atlantis security guards during a shooting at Marina Village was sentenced to more than 15 years in prison yesterday.

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Resident's anger after debris from truck shatters windscreen

A NASSAU resident is warning about dump trucks laden with quarry and pea rock speeding along JF Kennedy Drive and Windsor Road.

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Murder and robbery case discontinued

MURDER and robbery charges against a teenager were dropped yesterday in Supreme Court after prosecutors produced a written directive from the Attorney General’s Office requesting that proceedings be discontinued.

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Good samaritan earns courteous driver award

JOSEPH ‘Lil Joe’ Cartwright has won an award after he stopped to help a driver.

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Suppliers hammer PHA over multi-million bid exclusion

Bahamian medical equipment and pharmaceutical suppliers yesterday blasted the alleged continued refusal to include them in the bidding process for multi-million dollar contracts related to the Princess Margaret Hospital expansion, arguing that “none of this investment will be recycled” in the local economy.

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Real estate market ‘far stronger’ from Duty exemption talks

“Productive” discussions between the Government and real estate-related professions over the ‘first-time buyer’ Stamp Duty exemption should stimulate “a far stronger and more active market”, Tribune Business was told yesterday.

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Chamber chief ‘astounded’ by 4,000 VAT payers

The Bahamas Chamber of Commerce and Employers Confederation’s (BCCEC) chief executive yesterday said he was “astounded” by government figures showing less than 4,000 companies would be liable to pay Value Added Tax (VAT), adding that this emphasised the urgency of passing legislation designed to strengthen the small business sector.

Gov’t ‘victim’ in Oceania dispute

The Government is also “a victim” in the dispute raging at the controversial Oceania Heights development, one homeowner telling a Cabinet Minister that the situation is “jeopardising the Bahamas reputation as a stable country and investment destination”.

GB Power offering 35% oversubscribed

Grand Bahama Power Company (GBPC) yesterday announced that its $32 million preference share issue had closed a week earlier than planned, after it was oversubscribed by more than 35 per cent.

Junior tennis ace Justin Roberts still alive in doubles

DESPITE being knocked out of singles play in his latest tournament on the ITF circuit, Bahamian junior tennis ace Justin Roberts stayed alive in the doubles draw yesterday.

BFSB Summit ‘opens arms’ to innovation

Creativity and innovation will determine the future viability of international financial services centres, the Paul Winder, the Bahamas Financial Services Board’s (BFSB) chairman believes.

Cash: Foulkes out of step with rest or party

FNM chairman Darron Cash said he respects party veteran Dion Foulkes’ decision to vote for a national lottery.

Bahamas officials aid WTO accession

Two Bahamian officials have attended the 25th Geneva Week, where they participated in consultations that will help this nation in its accession to the World Trade Organisation (WTO).

Ocean Club gains new general manager

The One&Only Ocean Club has appointed John Conway as its general manager, with responsibility for operations at the resort.

Teaching yourself is the real world

Do you have the ability to self-teach?

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Almost 300 girls take part in GB Girls Soccer D-League

THE Grand Bahama Girls Soccer Developmental League play continues.

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National team named for ICC Tourney of Americas

With a big year on tap for the Bahamas Cricket Association, the local governing body of the sport has named the national team to represent the country as preparations are well underway for hosting international competition.

Wednesday, January 16


PM should be commended for bringing forward referendum

EDITOR, The Tribune.
We have had three prime ministers in the history of the Bahamas since
independence. Sir Lynden Pindling was unable to bring the gambling
issue before the people. Hubert Ingraham was not able to bring the
gambling issue before the people. Only Perry Christie has had the
courage to do so. He should be commended for this.
I agree that this process seems a little rushed. But you know what,
nothing is ever perfect. The people know what the issue is. They
have two questions to vote on and they have had enough time to think
about it. Do you support legalising web shops and a National Lottery?
It is as simple as that.
I support both. The government needs the tax dollars and Bahamians
need jobs. Many of the people who say vote no have a job. They don’t
care would happens to the thousands who work in the industry if the web
shops are closed.
Christie has taken a beating for bringing forward this referendum. The
fact that he has been willing to do so in the face of all this
hostility from the church, the opposition and haters everywhere shows
that he is a man of courage.
If the people vote yes, I know Perry Gladstone Christie will have the
courage to pass the bill legalising gambling in the House of Assembly.
I believe if the people vote no, that same Perry Gladstone Christie
will have the courage to shut down the numbers houses.
To my prime minister I say, stay strong. When you dare to address
issues that no one else would touch you pay the price. But remember
prime minister, history will remember you as the man who had the
courage to put the question to the people. It wasn’t Ingraham and it
wasn’t Sir Lynden. My Valley Boy was the one to let the people decide
what they want to do.


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Music documentary ignites raging debate

THE debate over what is considered true Bahamian music was reignited by the release of a new documentary: The Evolution of Bahamian Music.

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DJ of the week

MANY people know his name, but very few know his story. It was four years ago while attending university that Sean Ferguson, also known as DJ IGnite, gained the exposed that would launch is career in the world of music.

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Rising Bahamian singer releases 'Feel It'

YOUNG rising Bahamian singer, Melanique Babb released her latest single “Feel It” which encourages listeners to embrace opportunities.

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American Idol returns

JUST HOURS away into season twelve of American Idol, the show returns tonight with a new scene, new talent and the most talked about panel of judges to date.

Your vote will determine the future

Do not stay home and miss the opportunity to vote NO. You may be thinking this gambling issue is not that important, or that nothing is going to change, but you are wrong.

Was question changed?

I am seeking verification of a statement made by the government/prime minister in response to the Bahamas Christian Council’s questioning the action taken to alter Question No 1 prior to its publication without the courtesy of notifying the Council of the change…

Is this poll going to be fair?

IN God I trust - everyone else needs to be watched -

TOUGH CALL: The risks of the oil business

THE Bahamas National Trust featured an unusual public presentation last week – on the subject of oil exploration and transportation.

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Man accused of torching wife's jeep granted bail

A MAN accused of torching his wife’s jeep, and causing $4,000 worth of damage, was granted $5,000 bail after being charged in Magistrate’s Court yesterday afternoon.

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PM: Govt to investigate missing men

PRIME Minister Perry Christie said his government is obliged to take action to determine what happened to two Turkish nationals who disappeared in March 2012 as an attempt was made to smuggle them into the United States.

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More staff for BEC to cut down on overtime

PRIME Minister Perry Christie said yesterday the government is considering hiring more staff at BEC to “share responsibilities” rather than pay a few workers hundreds of thousands of dollars in overtime.

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PM: ‘Closing down every web shop would be expensive’

TO CLOSE down every web-shop ahead of the referendum would take great effort and cost taxpayers a lot of money, Prime Minister Perry Christie insisted yesterday.

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Police hold web shop inspector

A GAMING Board inspector is in police custody in connection with Sunday’s failed robbery of an armed car in front of a local web shop.

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Operation Potcake exceeding target

THE first phase of Operation Potcake came to a close with 1,244 dogs having been treated – far more than expected at this stage.

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Dion Foulkes: Why I'm voting yes to national lottery

FREE National Movement veteran Dion Foulkes has announced that despite his own party’s concerns, he will vote “yes” on the national lottery referendum question.

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Murder and robbery case to be discontinued by Attorney General

A MURDER and robbery case in which a teenager is accused of beating a man to death is expected to be discontinued today.

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Government consults on pensions for public sector

THE government is consulting with a local firm on how best to formulate a proper pension regime for persons in the public sector, Prime Minister Perry Christie said yesterday.

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Gun violence on agenda at Baptist mid-winter convention

THE Progressive National Baptist Convention is holding its mid-winter board meeting and adjourned session at the Wyndham Nassau Resort and Crystal Palace Casino.

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PM admits flaws in help for hurricane victims

ALMOST three months since hurricane Sandy ravished the country, Prime Minister Perry Christie admitted that people have not been satisfied with the government’s level of assistance to those seriously affected.

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RoyalStar: ‘Significant’ $4m profit despite Sandy

A leading Bahamian insurer yesterday said it generated a “significant profit” of around $4 million for 2012 despite Hurricane Sandy, adding that its conservative “philosophy” had been vindicated by an ‘outlook upgrade’ from the sector’s top rating agency.

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‘Mind blowing’: Under 4,000 firms face paying VAT

Under 4,000 Bahamian companies would likely face having to pay a Value-Added Tax (VAT), a Cabinet Minister describing as “mind blowing” the fact over 85 per cent of businesses might be exempt.

Logistics provider targets 35% saving

A Bahamas-based logistics provider yesterday said its new supply chain management product could save local businesses “up to 35 per cent” of their current import costs, pledging that it would “open up their horizons”.

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Bahamas 40% pts behind on pension participation

The Bahamas has to increase its pension plan participation rate by at least 40 percentage points to catch up with developed economies, a leading industry executive yesterday urging that mandatory retirement savings was “where we must be”.

Insurer targets ‘doubling’ of its Turks business book

J. S. Johnson is aiming to “double” its Turks & Caicos islands book of business within the next two years, its managing director telling Tribune Business that it had to be “mindful” that foreign insurers were entering the Bahamian market.

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Students from 15 schools all set to participate in Marathon Bahamas

THROUGH an initiative by Scotiabank, 15 schools from the Ministry of Education will be participating in Marathon Bahamas on Sunday.

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Team Bahamas in the win column on day 2

Day two of the International Club Doubles Week saw the Bahamas, Austria, US and Belgium all emerge as winners on Tuesday.

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Boxing show to honour Ray Minus Jr

ALTHOUGH he has left for the US to continue his professional boxing career, Meacher ‘Pain’ Major said he doesn’t want to forget his roots.

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Giants edge out Suns 25-22

JUST a few games remain in the Bahamas Association of Independent Secondary Schools junior boys basketball season and teams are positioning themselves to make a late season push.

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Scotiabank joins forces as corporate partner with Sunshine Insurance's Race Weekend

SCOTIABANK has again joined forces with Sunshine Insurance’s Race Weekend as a corporate partner of the annual event inclusive of Marathon Bahamas and the Susan G Komen Bahamas Race for the Cure.

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Star Trackers set to host its annual track classic

THE Star Trackers Track and Field Club is all set to host its annual Baker Concrete/Greyco Ltd ‘Star Performers Track Classic 2013’ 9am to 9pm February 4 at the Thomas A Robinson Track & Field Stadium.

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JBLN baseball league opens season

ON Saturday, Freedom Farm Baseball League opened another exciting, fun-filled and competitive season of baseball.

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‘Follow ups’ vital to sales generation

While driving last night I was listening to another ‘I Love Marketing’ podcast.

Gov’t revenue ‘unsustainable’

Dubbing the Government’s current revenue collection methods as “unsustainable”, the Financial Services Minister yesterday announced public consultations on tax reform will begin shortly.

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Occupancy rise to lower Air Fare Credit dependency

With hotel occupancies slowly returning to pre-recession levels, a top industry executive believes the sector could start to “wean itself off” promotions such as the Air Fare credit, agreeing that the $14 million pumped annually into the initiative was unsustainable.

Intelligence provider to address BFSB’s Summit

A leading intelligence provider for the private banking industry is a featured speaker at the upcoming International Business & Finance Summit (IBFS).

Tuesday, January 15

Response to Galanis column

Yesterday, Philip Galanis, Chairman of Vote Yes Bahamas, used his weekly column to lobby for a “yes” vote in the upcoming gambling referendum.

Vote yes for misery

$300,000,000 made from gambling in Web Shops every year! And all that lovely money spent by Bahamians will eventually help the Bahamian people!

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NCAA: 'Buddy' Hield takes starter job

Coming off their second loss in three games, the Oklahoma Sooners made the move to insert Chavano “Buddy” Hield into the starting lineup. Since then, the Sooners have enjoyed their longest win streak of the season.

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CAFL: Pros get 28-14 victory over the Jets

PHILIP Smith filled in at running back for a shorthanded Orry J Sands Pros backfield and had the game of his career yesterday against the BailCo Jets.

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Bahamas, US, Canada and Barbados are the winners

THE Bahamas was joined by the United States of America, Canada and Barbados as winners of the International Club Doubles Week that returned to Superclubs Breezes on Monday.

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JBLN marks 24 years

THE Junior Baseball League of Nassau opened its 2013 season on Saturday, January 12, as they began celebrations to mark their 24th year of youth baseball.

Halle Bowe wins international title

IT was a dream come true for eleven-year-old Halle Bowe, as she won the international title of Miss Pre-Teen Galaxy 2013 in Orlando, Florida.

Choosing personal growth over stagnation

OF the endless list of topical issues discussed on a daily basis, personal growth receives little attention. This lack of focus on personal progress has resulted in many people remaining in stagnation.

Sexual violence

WHEN Reverend Hall spoke out against homophobia, people were shocked.

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Third Annual St Jude Trike-A-Thon

PROCEEDS from an upcoming event will support ongoing research and the development of cures for deadly childhood diseases.PROCEEDS from an upcoming event will support ongoing research and the development of cures for deadly childhood diseases.

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Reader reaction to Blue Hole sale risk

FOLLOWING the news that the land around Dean’s Blue Hole in Long island may be sold and developed into a resort, Tribune readers responded with outrage and disbelief.

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Three robbers hunted after failed web shop heist

POLICE are still searching for three men involved in a armoured car robbery and shoot-out Sunday morning.

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Honour for 50 years of public service

MINISTER of National Security Dr Bernard J Nottage lauded former Parliamentary Commissioner Errol Bethel for 50 years of national service during a special lunch held in Mr Bethel’s honour.

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Murder case is fast-tracked

A MAN had his murder case fast-tracked to the Supreme Court yesterday after being served with a Voluntary Bill of Indictment in Magistrate’s Court.

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Deputy Prime Minister in visit to Operation Potcake

DEPUTY Prime Minister Philip “Brave” Davis paid a visit to Operation Potcake’s Fox Hill clinic and was amazed by the size and level of organisation on display.

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Phi Beta Sigma in action

MEMBERS of Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity Inc have celebrated the fraternity’s 99th anniversary.

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Debate on pension fund

WHILE former City Market staff continue to await their retirement and severance pay-outs, parliamentarians yesterday debated the Employee Pension Fund Protection Bill.

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Tributes to Peggy Hall

MARGARET “PEGGY” HALL, businesswoman, park warden, conservationist, and boating enthusiast died peacefully at her home in Georgetown, Great Exuma, on January 3, 2013, in her 90th year.

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Tribune newspaper vendor shot dead

AT ABOUT 5:30 yesterday morning a newspaper vendor phoned The Tribune’s circulation department to have 120 newspapers set aside for him. He said he was on his way to collect them. Twenty-five minutes later he was dead...

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Dean's Blue Hole 'to stay in the hands of Bahamian people'

THE GOVERNMENT moved to allay fears that Dean’s Blue Hole on Long Island will be sold in a multi-million dollar land deal stating that the property “will remain in the hands of the Bahamian people.”

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Turkish officials surprised at lack of communication

OFFICIALS at the Turkish Embassy in Cuba have expressed “surprise” at the lack of communication from the Bahamas Government in the disappearance of their nationals in Bahamian waters in March of 2012.

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Minnis hits out at PM over refusal of gun case review

OPPOSITION Leader Dr Hubert Minnis yesterday criticised Prime Minister Perry Christie for failing to allow the FNM its own independent review of a dropped fire arms possession case.

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Miller concern at BEC overtime

LESLIE Miller, BEC’s Chairman, yesterday expressed concern that salaries and bonuses at the electric corporation have been putting an unnecessary burden on the backs of Bahamians.

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Web shops 'prepared to offer shares'

BAHAMIANS will be allowed to purchase shares in “number houses” if the January 28 referendum on gaming is passed, campaign coordinator for “Vote Yes” Phillip Galanis said yesterday.

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Gov’t pushed NIB’s City Markets HQ acquisition

The Government pushed the National Insurance Board (NIB) to examine acquiring the former City Markets head office on the East-West Highway, it was revealed yesterday, with appraisal values for the property gyrating between $7.2 million and $9.9 million.

BEC union makes ‘no response’ to outages threat

The union representing the Bahamas Electricty Corporation’s (BEC) line staff yesterday said it would not “take any more” attacks by its executive chairman over overtime pay, and threatened that its members would refuse to respond to emergencies such as major power outages.

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Gov’t to tackle ‘huge’ unfunded public pensions

The Government is moving to tackle its “huge” unfunded pension liability to the public sector, a Cabinet Minister telling Tribune Business that the general lack of retirement savings was “a social timebomb” for the Bahamas.

Insurer: 2013 Profits increase ‘for sure’

J. S. Johnson is targeting a “modest single digit” bottom line increase for 2013, its managing director yesterday saying profits would increase “for sure” given reduced claims losses last year.

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BEC pension, medical plan ‘unfair’ to Bahamian taxpayers

The BAHAMAS Electricity Corporation’s (BEC) executive chairman yesterday said it was “unfair” for the cash-strapped utility monopoly to continue paying 100 per cent of all employee pensions and medical benefits, claiming that the medical plan alone had cost it $30 million over the past five years without employees paying “a single dime”.

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Baha Mar dismisses fear of Atlantis ‘cannibalisation’

Baha Mar has emphatically rejected concerns that it will “cannibalise” Atlantis’s room rates and labour market when it opens in 2015, a senior executive telling Tribune Business the project would increase the Bahamas’ GDP by “at least 10 per cent” that year.

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BTC owner reinforces Bahamas commitment

The Bahamas Telecommunications Company’s (BTC) majority shareholder effectively hit back yesterday at Prime Minister Perry Christie’s concerns over its asset sales, adding that $749.7 million it would receive for exiting Macau will be ploughed back into its Bahamian - and Caribbean - interests.

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BISX targets Brazil following ‘huge win’

The Bahamas International Securities Exchange (BISX) is heading to Brazil “to solicit recognitions” from that jurisdiction’s major regulators, after Latin America’s “doors were opened” by this nation attaining the top international securities industry ranking.

Monday, January 14

Wilchcombe prepared for a ‘Yes’ vote

THE establishment of regulated web shops – even the promotion of a web-shop industry – seems to be a foregone conclusion in government circles as Referendum Day, January 28, nears.

A Christian argument for gambling

SOMETHING has been bothering me ever since the start of the Great Debate on Gambling.

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Roberts: Crime levels show a lack of respect

THE current level of crime, carnage and disregard for human life shows a lack of respect for the “precious and hard fought freedoms” won during the majority rule era, PLP chairman Bradley Roberts said yesterday.

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FNM: Christian Council told to 'drop dead' over gambling fears

THE Free National Movement has accused Prime Minister Perry Christie of effectively telling the Christian Council to “drop dead” over the upcoming gambling vote.

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Web shops: eliminate or regulate

I DO NOT play the numbers, nor do I encourage others to do so...

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Handling class for dog show hopefuls

THE Bahamas Kennel Club held a special handling class for dog owners on Saturday, ahead of its International All Breed and Obedience Dog Show, set to take place March 16 and 17.

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Baha Mar matches $10,000 of Salvation Army donations

THE Baha Mar Challenge, an ongoing annual holiday season initiative during which the resort matches dollar-for-dollar donations up to $10,000 to the Salvation Army, helped to raise more than $70,000 during a 15-day drive.

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Planning beyond Hugo Chavez

HUGO Chavez, the populist leader of Venezuela, could not turn-up on January 10 for his swearing-in ceremony as President for a fourth consecutive term.

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Blue hole up for sale for $10M

THE PROPERTY around Dean’s Blue Hole, Long Island, the deepest blue hole in the world, is reportedly for sale.

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164 Haitians stopped on 40-foot sailing boat

THE United States Coast Guard repatriated 164 Haitian migrants after it intercepted a 40-foot ‘grossly overloaded’ sailing boat off Long Island.

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Woman stabbed to death - suspect held by police

A 22-year-old woman became the country’s latest murder victim after she was stabbed to death in the early hours of Saturday morning.

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70 arrests in police swoop

POLICE officers arrested more than 70 people and confiscated a machine gun, shotgun and quantities of drugs over the weekend.

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EMS staff demand health insurance

EMERGENCY Medical Services (EMS) personnel - some with life-threatening illnesses - say they need the government and the Public Hospitals Authority (PHA) to put them on a “comprehensive” medical insurance plan outside of their National Insurance coverage.

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Mitchell orders report on missing men

MINISTER of Foreign Affairs Fred Mitchell has ordered his team to prepare a report on the disappearance of three nationals - two Turkish and one Jamaican - who were allegedly being smuggled into the United States via Grand Bahama.

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Bird strike grounds plane

A JETBLUE flight to the Bahamas was forced to turn around yesterday after striking a bird.

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Officer was alleged to be part of gang

A HIGH-SPEED car-chase and a gunfight ended when a police officer was shot in the face after it is alleged that he and three other men attempted to rob a web-shop.

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Atlantis: ‘Exceptionally strong’ leisure bookings ahead 20%

Atlantis’s leisure visitor business is “showing exceptional strength”, the resort’s top executive has revealed, with bookings for January to-date 19-20 per cent ahead of prior year comparatives.

City Markets pension plan ‘unable to pay $11m’ owed

The City Markets employee pension fund was unable to pay the $11 million owed to beneficiaries as at end-June 2009 “because of lack of liquidity”, a forensic accounting report has alleged.

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World ‘can’t replicate’ multi-billion Freeport infrastructure spend

Freeport is a “Singapore or Hong Kong waiting to be used”, the Grand Bahama Port Authority’s (GBPA) chairman believes, warning that it would be a “travesty” if the Bahamas failed to exploit the city’s existing multi-billion dollar infrastructure investments.

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BISX-listed fund targets 50% cut to vacancy rates

The BISX-listed Bahamas Property Fund is aiming to slash vacancy rates by around 50 per cent at both its flagship properties over the next two years, after seeing its net income for the first nine months last year fall 28 per cent.

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Environmentalist: Oil will change Bahamas instantly

Wall Street will “immediately revise” its opinion on the Bahamian economy’s prospects and fiscal outlook if commercial quantities of oil are discovered in this nation, a local environmental expert believes.

Bazaar owner unware of Association sale plan

A MAJOR owner of Freeport International’s Bazaar said it was unaware that the Association controlling it had placed the property up for sale, but told Tribune Business: “We welcome anyone who would want to buy it.”

Worker health can't be ignored

Well, it is flu season, and many people are deciding whether or not to make an appearance at work or remain safely tucked in bed.

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'Cuda' pride as swim club victorious in BSF meet

THE Barracuda Swim Club pulled off another victory on the Bahamas Swimming Federation’s 2012/13 season. This time at their own Insurance Management Invitational at the Betty Kelly Kenning Aquatic Center over the weekend.

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Vitamalt official malt beverage for Marathon Bahamas

As thousands of local and international participants cross the finish lines at Sunshine Insurance Race Weekend 2013’s Marathon Bahamas and the Susan G Komen Bahamas Race for the Cure, they will be greeted with an ice cold Vitamalt beverage.

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Justin Roberts advances to main draw

BAHAMIAN Justin Roberts’ tennis tour in the Middle East along with his coach Michel Lentjes and his teammates and other coaching staff from his Meppel, Netherlands Tennis Center of Excellence Academy (TCE) has started successfully.

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Cheetahs slide past Operators 52-48

PHILICIA Kelly may not have been a part of the Four J’s Lady Cheetahs when they repeated as champions of the New Providence Women’s Basketball Association last year.

Saturday, January 12

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John bull worker accused of $25,000 theft from company

A JOHN Bull worker has been accused of stealing more than $25,000 from the company.

Pastors face-off over gambling

A ROW broke out on a radio talk show between two pastors over their differences in opinion on the upcoming vote on gambling.

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Freak accident kills worker

A FREAK accident at a construction site claimed the life of a 23-year-old man.

Friday, January 11

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Students growing produce for tables at the Sheraton

THE SHERATON Resort’s general manager stood in the middle of a row of butternut squash plants at North Andros High School and handed his mobile phone to the crop’s caretaker.

Appeal by man convicted over drugs and firearm

A MAN who believes a magistrate did not give him the opportunity to mount a defence in his $80,000 drugs, firearm and ammunition trial is appealing his conviction and sentence.

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Beyonce and Blue take a dip in the Bahamas

BLUE Ivy Carter took a dip in the cool blue waters of the Bahamas this week - with a little help from her mum Beyonce.

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Seven-week wait for retrial decision

A MAN will wait nearly seven weeks for the Court of Appeal to hear arguments on whether he should be retried in Supreme Court on a manslaughter charge, despite being acquitted of murder more than a decade ago.

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Testimony by video to be allowed by courts

ATTORNEY General Allyson Maynard-Gibson said that legislation to allow video conferencing to be used in matters prior to criminal cases going to trial is expected to be brought to parliament shortly.

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Chief Justice backs family court plan

CHIEF Justice Sir Michael Barnett this week supported the establishment of a family court in an environment outside of criminal and commercial disputes.

Yes campaign gives its view

YESTERDAY, we as a people celebrated the 45th anniversary of majority rule in the Bahamas. This milestone is one of the many that helped strengthen the democracy we are still working to perfect.

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Legalities of the referendum

THE topic of gambling or gaming has been splashed in numerous headlines in the Bahamas recently, such as ‘Referendum is unclear, forced and flawed’, ‘Mixed views on gambling referendum’ and ‘The referendum has been postponed to January 28, 2013, when it is hoped that the referendum adequately capture the voice of the people on the subject’.

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'Be safe - get a flu shot

HEALTH officials are urging Bahamians to get vaccinated as soon as possible after the US-based Centres for Disease Control called the current flu season in America the worst in 10 years.

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Human smuggling ring link to disappearances

POLICE are investigating a possible connection between an employee at the Lynden Pindling International Airport and a businessman in Grand Bahama, who are said to be the main facilitators in a human smuggling ring.

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Mass sick-out staged by staff at College of the Bahamas

THE nation’s college says they “remain at the negotiating table” with non-faculty members, following a mass, two-day sick-out where several employees did not report for work.

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Gun found on US man's boat

A 60-year-old American has been arrested for failing to declare the firearms on his boat to Royal Bahamas Defence Force officers.

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Centre director says allegations are 'spurious'

CANCER Centre of the Bahamas managing director Dr Arthur Porter yesterday hit back at “spurious” allegations surrounding his business ventures, and tenure and resignation from the McGill University Health Centre (MUHC) in Canada.

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BTC to ‘leverage Internet market lead’ through TV

The Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) is aiming to use its new TV product “to gain a market leading Internet position”, its chief executive yesterday saying the company should never have let its broadband share drop to 25 per cent.

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Bahamas ‘nightmare’ if no Baha Mar visitor increase

The Bahamas faces “a nightmare” if Baha Mar’s opening in 2015 fails to increase stopover visitor numbers, Atlantis’s top executive warning such a scenario would spark “a rate war” and drive hotel sector salary levels to “unsustainable” levels.

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CJ’s concerns over $3m City Markets pension deal

The now-Chief Justice had concerns over the deal that saw City Markets’ employee pension fund invest $3 million in a sale-and-leaseback deal over the now-defunct supermarket chain’s assets, saying he was “troubled” that the plan involved 25 per cent of the fund’s assets.

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Atlantis group bookings pace up 132% for ‘15

Atlantis’s 2015 group booking pace is up 132 per cent, its top executive said yesterday, with the Paradise Island resort’s booking for the past three months “off the charts”.

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‘Game changing’ water park to create 100 jobs

A “game changing” beach and water park is set to create 75-100 permanent jobs in Freeport once constructed, the Grand Bahama Port Authority’s (GBPA) chairman yesterday saying the project would be “pretty mega”.

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Students growing produce for tables at the Sheraton

THE SHERATON Resort’s general manager stood in the middle of a row of butternut squash plants at North Andros High School and handed his mobile phone to the crop’s caretaker

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Appeal by man convicted over drugs and firearm

A MAN who believes a magistrate did not give him the opportunity to mount a defence in his $80,000 drugs, firearm and ammunition trial is appealing his conviction and sentence.

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PM’s concerns over CWC’s Europe sale

PRIME Minister Perry Christie yesterday questioned why the Bahamas Telecommunications Company’s (BTC) majority owner had decided to divest its European holdings, as he hinted that the option of renationalising the carrier was open to the Government.

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Atlantis chief: $14m Air Fare credit ‘unsustainable’

The $14 million spent annually on the Air Fare Credit initiative is “unsustainable”, Atlantis’s senior executive warned yesterday, with the hotel industry looking at dipping into “anticipated 2014 funding” by March to continue supporting it.

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Sports in brief

THE New Providence Volleyball Association continued its regular season at the DW Davis Gym on Wednesday night.

Items left undone from last year

SO we have survived 2012.

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Freedom Farm Baseball League to open season this Saturday

THE stage is all set for the 2013 season opening of the largest youth sports league in The Bahamas. 

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Breezes to host doubles tourney

The Bahamas will be out with basically the same team on the court as they did two years ago when the International Club of the Bahamas hosted the first inter-country tennis doubles tournament at Breezes Superclubs.

Team Bahamas ready for ECASC

WITH the English Caribbean Ladies Softball Championship and World Games Qualifier on the horizon, Bahamas Softball Federation president Burkett Dorsett said they are putting the final touches on the national team as well as the facilities in Freeport, Grand Bahama.

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First karate tournament for the year all set

THE FIRST karate tournament for 2013 is all set to take place at Sangre Grande Government Secondary School on Februrary 3.

Thursday, January 10

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Man questioned over first murders of year

A 20-YEAR-OLD man is assisting with the police investigation into the first two murders of 2013.

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Attorney General says backlog of cases is a 'grave concern'

EVEN if they focused solely on criminal cases in 2013, the 12 current Supreme Court judges could not clear the backlog of outstanding cases, Attorney General Allyson Maynard-Gibson yesterday.

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Christie: We will make January 10 a Bahamian holiday

TODAY could be recognised by the government as a national holiday as early as next year, Prime Minister Perry Christie told the House of Assembly yesterday.

Giving a Christian view on issues concerning gambling

A faulty basic assumption is implied: that legalising something makes it morally right...

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Celebrating the work of students

IN the afterglow of Christmas, Bahamian students on holiday break from various educational institutions gathered at an annual scholars reception to express their gratitude to the Lyford Cay Foundations for making their studies possible.

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Dog show to be held

THE Bahamas Kennel Club’s International All Breed and Obedience Dog Show will take place March 16 and 17 on the grounds of Bahamas Food Services on Gladstone Road.

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Great Abaco fitness weekend registration up and running

THE 2013 Great Abaco Family Fitness Weekend is now open for registration.

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Government gives back to fishing efforts

STAFFORD Creek, North Andros – Deputy Prime Minister Philip Davis reaffirmed his government’s commitment to the non-profit Bahamas Sportfishing and Conservation Association and its efforts to restore creeks and in-land lakes throughout the Bahamas.

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'We need answers over gun case'

THE government must give a “full and frank explanation” of exactly what the matters of national security were that caused the Attorney General’s office to order that a gun and ammunition case be dropped, the FNM said yesterday.

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City Market workers take protest to streets

SCORES of former City Market employees protested in front of the House of Assembly yesterday demanding a meeting with the government regarding their severance pay and pension funds.

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Concern over armed robberies

JUST 10 days into the New Year and police say they are already concerned about the number of armed robberies in the capital.

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BRIEF: Bomb scare at Marathon

THE Mall at Marathon had to be evacuated yesterday afternoon following a bomb scare.

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Nottage upset at Christian Council

NATIONAL Security Minister Bernard Nottage said he was “disappointed” the Bahamas Christian Council did not voice its objections to the wording of the gambling referendum question when the question was first presented to them, prior to its release.

Cancer alert for doctor in controversy

AMID controversy surrounding his tenure and resignation from McGill University, Cancer Centre of the Bahamas managing director Dr Arthur Porter has been admitted to Doctors Hospital to begin treatment for cancer.

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Butler-Turner: PLP tried to use NIB cash for bailout

FNM Deputy Leader Loretta Butler-Turner accused the government yesterday of using public funds to bail out a private company.

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Beyonce and Jay-Z meet PM

SUPERSTAR Beyonce has told the Prime Minister of her love of the Bahamas.

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Families seek answers over missing trio

THE families of three men are demanding answers from the police on the disappearance of their relatives who Bahamians were trying to smuggle into the United States by way of Grand Bahama.

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Canada to press PM on Oceania dispute

Canada’s leading Caribbean diplomat is planning to discuss the controversial Oceania Heights development with Prime Minister Perry Christie this month, Tribune Business was told yesterday, with homeowners “astonished” by the project developers’ reasons for rejecting a face-to-face meeting.

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Private pension assets drop 39%

OCCUPATIONAL pension fund assets in the Bahamas dropped by 38.6 per cent between 2007 and 2011 due to the recession, a Cabinet Minister said yesterday, adding that the Government’s proposed pension legislation represented a “major step forward” for regulation.

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Wendy’s creates 42 jobs with second Carmichael outlet

WENDY’S (Bahamas) has created 42 jobs by opening its second outlet in the Carmichael Road area, expanding its New Providence brand presence to 11 locations with a “dual drive through” concept.

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Bahamas needs ‘world class’ IP protection

The Bahamas needs “a world class intellectual property rights system”, a leading private sector executive said yesterday, as the Government unveiled a seven-strong Bill package designed to bring this nation in line with “international best practices” and World Trade Organisation (WTO) requirements.

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Bahamas a 'major player' in international cricket tourney

WITH its internal issues resolved and it once again functioning as a local governing body, the Bahamas Cricket Association (BCA) looks to make cricket a major part of the Bahamas 40th Anniversary of Independence celebrations.

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Register today for the Great Abaco Family Fitness Weekend

REGISTRATION officially opened yesterday for the second edition of the Great Abaco Family Fitness Weekend, an event organisers expect to exceed the success of their initial effort last year.  

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Knights get the victory

  The Government Secondary Schools Sports Association (GSSA) continued its senior basketball season at the DW Davis Gym yesterday.

ART OF GRAPHIX: The skills designers are required to master

Do you want to be a professional and make a career of graphic design?

Sandals hails Bahamian landscaper’s promotion

Sandals Emerald Bay is celebrating the promotion of Duvann Munroe as its first Bahamian assistant landscaping manager.

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PM meets workers amid City Markets protests

THE REPRESENTATIVES for former City Markets employees yesterday again met with the Prime Minister in an effort to resolve their struggle to obtain due severance pay and benefits issues from their former employer.

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Port owners subsidising ‘maintain Freeport’ loss

The Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA) sustains annual operating losses, and has to be subsidised by its two shareholder families, because the costs of maintaining Freeport exceed its revenue streams.

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Gov’t urged: ‘Outsource’ property tax collection

The Government was yesterday urged to ‘outsource’ real property tax collection to the private sector, a well-known businessman suggesting it was almost ‘uncollectable’.

Wednesday, January 9

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New creative innovations in costume designs

EVERY year new design innovations hit Bay Street, adding flair and longevity to costumes.

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Bahamas ‘losing credibility’ for big name concerts: PART 2!

SECURE financial backing and fulfilling all contractual obligations are key to bringing well known international artists to perform in the Bahamas.

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Sasha Dunn releases mix-tape

BAHAMIAN rapper Sasha Dunn is gearing up for the second release of his mix-tape Hazy Dayz & Crazy Nightz this month.

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All that glitters… is Galaxy!

PAGEANT season will be here before you know it, and the Bahamas Galaxy Pageant organisation is wasting no time in putting together their early registration list.

Poll should be challenged

The poll that the government plans to put to the Bahamian people can be challenged before the courts because what is being put to the people on January 28 is not a referendum at all.

The issue most deserving of referendum

In the midst of all the hysteria surrounding the soon to be held opinion poll for the legalization of the illegal numbers racket, cloaked in the disguise of a referendum, the populace and the clergy in particular have seemingly lost sight of the issue most deserving of and what would constitute a genuine and legal referendum, the upgrading of women’s rights in the Bahamas to the same status of those enjoyed by our men.

TOUGH CALL: The scale of illegal fishing problem

Illegal fishing by Dominicans and others was one of the hot-button issues of last year’s general election campaign.

Should Christians support gambling?

In May, a referendum on gambling was promised by the newly formed government. I am convinced that this stated objective reveals the way in which politicians have manipulated and desensitised our minds and way of thinking.

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Officials stumped over men’s deaths

OFFICIALS yesterday admitted they were stumped over what could have led to the death of two men discovered floating in waters between North Andros and Lyford Cay.

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PM questions vote-no campaign’s concerns

PRIME Minister Perry Christie has questioned why the vote-no campaign is taking issue with the first referendum question when, they had opportunity to personally speak with him on the question, prior to its release.

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Govt explores ‘major initiatives’ ahead of budget

THE government is exploring “major initiatives” targeted at limiting the country’s expenditure and increasing revenue ahead of the delivery of the mid-year budget.

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Tourists ‘would be able to buy lotto tickets’ if gambling is legalised

A regulated web-shop industry and the creation of a national lottery could become tourism attractions for the country and sources of revenue, according to Tourism Minister Obie Wilchcombe.

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Haitian captain, crew charged in connection with $1m drug seizure

A HAITIAN captain and his crew of seven countrymen appeared in Magistrate’s Court yesterday to be arraigned in connection with a $1million cocaine seizure last weekend.

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FNM: Letter shows public 'not told truth'

A LETTER has surfaced purporting to show that despite claiming he did not know a woman for whom he sought $15,000 in NIB coverage, Gregory Moss was in fact “personally familiar” with the patient.

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BTC seeks public help to stop copper thefts

THE Bahamas Telecommunications Company called on the public to do its part in maintaining land and cell phone services by helping stop the copper thefts at BTC sites.

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Bishop Hall: Government should regulate the numbers industry

THE government “should regulate the numbers industry to bring it under taxation and control” former New Covenant Baptist Church Bishop Simeon Hall reiterated yesterday.

Delays in government mortgage programme

THE government’s mortgage programme has experienced some delays in bringing assistance to homeowners who a applied for relief, State Finance Minister Michael Halkitis said yesterday.

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Minister: More must be done to promote tourism

ALTHOUGH last year “ended well” with gains in overnight and cruise visitors, Tourism Minister Obie Wilchcome said more needs to be done to promote a “sustainable tourism industry”.

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Bahamians are encouraged to ‘get up and move’

OFFICIALS at the Department of Public Health and the Flamingo Gardens Polyclinic are anticipating that their “Get Up and Move” campaign will take on national significance this year, as they encourage all Bahamians to take responsibility for their own health.

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Man in court over Urban Renewal break-in

A MAN accused of breaking into an Urban Renewel Project Centre and making off with nearly two dozen electronic items worth thousands of dollars was arraigned in Magistrate’s Court yesterday.

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Man charged with attempted murder

A MAN was remanded to Her Majesty’s Prison without bail yesterday after being arraigned in Magistrate’s Court on an attempted murder charge.

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FNM leader vows to work with government in 2013

OPPOSITION leader Dr Hubert Minnis vowed to work with the government in 2013 to improve the economy for the benefit of all Bahamians.

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Port urged: Account for $8.5m ‘development’ funds

The Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA) was yesterday urged to account for the $8.5 million in ‘economic development promotion’ fees it has extracted from Grand Bahama Power Company (GBPC) over the past 17 years, an MP also suggesting that the latter’s customers were “getting the short end of the stick”.

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Dismay at Spotless Cleaners’ closure

EMPLOYEES at Spotless Cleaners, the dry cleaning chain, were yesterday left without a job work as the company announced the permanent closure of all 10 Nassau locations.

Venture Fund targets $1.5m funding in '13

The Government-sponsored venture capital fund is set to receive a total $1.5 million funding injection in 2013, its administrator confirming yesterday that it received the first tranche on Monday.

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Super Value roadworks losses greater than $15m relief package

Super Value’s president yesterday said the supermarket chain would apply to the Government’s roadworks relief initiative, even though it was likely owed more - on its own - than the total $15 million compensation package being made available.

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CWC’s accounting requirement for BTC control ‘not black and white’

A leading Government negotiator yesterday suggested Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC) may not necessarily need to retain a majority 51 per cent stake in the Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) to consolidate the latter’s performance in its overall financial results.

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Rockets, Cleaners get wins

THE Pyramid Food Rockets and the Double R Services Limited Cleaners were the latest victors in the New Providence Basketball Association as the league continued its regular season at the CI Gibson Gym on Monday night.

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The best approach to group selling

Whether we like it or not, we are all salesmen.

With $40,000 grant, All-For-One Regatta set for Montagu Bay

WITH a grant of $40,000 from the Ministry of Agriculture, Marine Resources and Local Government, the All-For-One Regatta is set to be staged in Montagu Bay over the weekend of January 26-27.

NPCA awards cyclists

THE local governing body for cycling recently announced its award winners to conclude what they described as an “exciting and competitive season.”

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T-Bird Flyers Track Club Classic in Grand Bahama this weekend

AFTER the uncertainty over whether or not any of the two Thomas A Robinson Track and Field Stadiums would be available, Foster Dorsett said their T-Bird Flyers Track Club was forced to take their track and field classic to Grand Bahama this weekend.

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SAC wins again

The St Augustine’s College Big Red Machine held off the Kingsway Academy Saints in a hard fought 75-61 decision on Tuesday as the Bahamas Association of Independent Secondary Schools resumed its 2012/13 regular season after taking a break for the Christmas holiday.

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Sports in brief

THE New Providence Volleyball Association continued its regular season with a double header at the DW Davis Gym.

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Pension Protection Bill debate starting today

The House of Assembly will today begin debate on the proposed Employees Pension Fund Protection Bill, the Minister of State for Finance said yesterday.

Over 100 hotel staff receive severance pay

JUST over 100 employees of the Paradise Island Habour Resort received their severance package back in mid-December, a hotel union executive confirmed to Tribune Business yesterday.

Tuesday, January 8

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PM 'delighted' with appointment

REVEREND Father James Moultrie, Anglican priest and the Bahamas' former Ambassador to the United Nations, has been appointed the new Chairman of the National Insurance Board.

National Insurance fund must be protected

THE SEEMINGLY cavalier attitude of this government towards the urgent need to cut costs rather than to add to the deficit by creating more jobs for “the boys”, has left even foreigners concerned for the future of this country.

Looking to the future

2012 has been a challenging year for tens of thousands of Bahamians. Some of the missteps and setbacks have been of our own making, either due to overt neglect of our individual affairs or due to unavoidable acts of God. In some cases far too many of us placed our well-being in the hands of politicians; tin gods and iron men/women.

Hoodwinked by the PLP

The Bahamian people have been exploited on many occasions, but never in the history have they been had, took, hoodwinked, bamboozled, led astray, run amuck, lied to and shafted.

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Anthonique has eyes set on pro debut

Highly acclaimed sprinter Anthonique Strachan finds herself in a unique situation as she joggles her time in school while preparing to compete professionally on the track and field circuit.

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NCAA: Another stacked field for 2013 Battle 4 Atlantis

BASED on the early success of the Battle 4 Atlantis over the past three years, the tournament has become the upstart of the college basketball world, established a reputation as a top early season tournament on the NCAA calendar and has confirmed another stacked field for the 2013 edition.

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An epic story of suspense, love and survival

BASED on the family diaries of her grandparents, the pages of Marina Gottlieb Sarles’ new novel tell an epic story of suspense, love and survival.

Money, motives and the search for meaning

If you paid close attention to the rhythm of life, you will notice that life always gives you exactly what you are asking for.

Do we have a God – gene?”

A few nights ago, while channel surfing, I came across an American cult classic, The Blue Lagoon. The film tells the story of two young children marooned on a tropical island paradise in the South Pacific.

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All I want for Christmas . . .

“All I want for Christmas is my two front teeth, my two front teeth, see my two front teeth!”

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Don't get caught unpeeled

WHAT does a banana have to do with HIV/AIDS prevention? It is the symbol used in a campaign launched by the local health community to promote safer sex and the message: “Don’t Get Caught Unpeeled”.

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Shaq backs children's charities

LEGENDARY basketball superstar Shaquille O’Neal was in Nassau over the weekend to promote an upcoming charity event being held on Friday, February 1, at the Atlantis Resort on Paradise Island.

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PM sends condolences after MP's husband dies

PRIME Minister Perry Christie extended condolences to Transport and Aviation Minister Glenys Hanna-Martin after her ex-husband’s body was found in an abandoned building in eastern New Providence over the weekend.

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Accused will face drug charge over discovery of 130lbs of marijuana

A MAGISTRATE ruled that the prosecution in a 130 pound marijuana seizure trial has produced sufficient evidence for the accused to answer a drug charge.

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Hunt for missing teenager

Police are searching for a teenager who has gone missing - and have issued a public appeal in their search.

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Man remanded to prison on double murder charge

A MAN was remanded to Her Majesty’s Prison yesterday after being charged in Magistrate’s Court in connection with two murders, one dating back to 2011.

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50-year-old man accused of having sex with six-year-old boy

A 50-YEAR-OLD man accused of trying to have sex with a 6-year-old boy on the last day of 2012 was arraigned in Magistrate’s Court yesterday morning.

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Concern over rise of drug shipments at airport

COMMISSIONER of Police Ellison Greenslade expressed concern yesterday over the growing use of the Lynden Pindling International Airport as a transshipment point for dangerous drugs.

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Magazine insight into economy

THREE key government ministers give their insight into plans to redefine the country’s economic model in the latest edition of a Bahamas magazine.

The 150th anniversary of the US Emancipation Proclamation

ON January 1, the United States marked the 150th anniversary of the date President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation, declaring that millions of men, women and children held in slavery were forever free.

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Christie confident Moss will not quit the PLP

PRIME Minister Perry Christie said he has “every confidence” Gregory Moss will not quit the Progressive Liberal Party in light of his termination as National Insurance Board chairman.

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Immigration director reassigned to anniversary role

IMMIGRATION Director Jack Thompson has been reassigned as the chief administrator of the country’s 40th Anniversary of Independence Committee.

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Lone gunman shoots victim dead

POLICE are asking the public’s assistance in solving a late night shooting that left one man dead and two other persons fighting for their lives in hospital.

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Man: Police attacked me

A 20-year-old man is recovering in hospital today, after allegedly being attacked by a police officer early Sunday morning.

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Woman smuggled drugs to pay for care of her child

BEFORE being sentenced to 16 months in prison for trying to smuggle cocaine into the USA, a woman told the magistrate that she was willing to risk getting caught because she needed the $6,000 payment to take care of her and her then two-year-old child.

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'Hit men' blamed for majority of 2012 murders

POLICE Commissioner Ellison Greenslade said yesterday that gang activity and “hit men” accounted for a majority of the murders in 2012.

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Nygard daughter victim of robbery

THE alleged burglar of the home of a millionaire’s daughter was arraigned in Magistrate’s Court yesterday in connection with the $42,000 burglary and the theft of a jeep, owned by the Lyford Cay resident’s company.

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Greenslade: I have been too tolerant on numbers houses

POLICE Commissioner Ellison Greenslade yesterday admitted that he has been “far too tolerant” with number houses. However, he said, it is a “very difficult” issue for the Royal Bahamas Police Force.

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January 10 to be public holiday?

IN an effort to “elevate” the significance of Majority Rule Day, a Bahamian National Honours system will be created and consideration given to making January 10 a public holiday in future years.

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Murder rate down 13% from 2011

DESPITE overall crime statistics being down by 5 per cent in 2012 compared to 2011, police say serious crimes or crimes against persons increased by 2 per cent during the same time period.

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‘Six-figure’ investors still seeking Speed Week returns

Bahamas Speed Week’s investors are hoping the 2013 version will finally deliver a return on their “multiple six-figures” investment, its president yesterday disclosing that the 2012 event failed to reach the ‘break even’ target despite injecting more than $500,000 into the local economy.

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Governor: $931m liquidity means no ‘crowding out’

The Central Bank’s governor yesterday said that “ample” banking system liquidity of $931 million would ensure the Government’s deficit financing needs did not ‘crowd out’ private sector capital raisings, telling Tribune Business there were “no concerns from that standpoint”.

GB Power’s $32m issue ‘likely oversubscribed’

Grand Bahama Power Company’s (GBPC) $32 million private preference share issue was last night said by capital markets sources to be “pretty much fully subscribed”, with analysts expecting it to exceed its target.

Stolen business assets: Less than 2% recovered

RECOVERING misappropriated assets remains a major challenge for Bahamian businesses, a leading private sector executive said yesterday, calling it “very disturbing” that the police were only able to recover close to 2 per cent of some $11.5 million worth of monies and goods alleged to have been stolen in 2012.

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Lightning-Swift swim club on stream

THE Lucayan Lightning Swim Team has joined with Swift Swimming to produce swimmers that will be known as the Lightning-Swift.

Oceania meeting falls through

Homeowners at the controversy-torn Oceania Heights development last night expressed “disappointment, but not surprise”, that the developers had not committed to meeting them on Thursday this week.

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Bahamas in ‘catch up on land conveyancing'

THE Bahamas has not seen any major changes to its real estate conveyancing laws for more than 100 years, an attorney said yesterday, stating that this jurisdiction was really playing “catch up” on the issue.

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Gov’t urged: ’Take lead’ on $100m spending cuts

The Government was yesterday urged to take the “lead” in shrinking its annual expenditure by $100 million, a leading businessman arguing that specific cuts would give the Bahamas “more credibility” with Wall Street and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Monday, January 7

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The weird and wonderful worldwide web

THE world of the world wide web is a big one – so where to start for the fun and cool websites out there? Here’s a few pointers.

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Issues surrounding gambling referendum

THE referendum questions are out, and as predicted they are giving rise to more questions than answers. Do you support the regulation and taxation of web shop gaming? And, do you support the establishment of a national lottery?

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Shock over discovery in abandoned building

AUTHORITIES have launched an investigation into the death of a man who was found hanging from an abandoned building at eastern New Providence over the weekend.

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Cargill seeks to have Moss jailed

IN the latest development in the NIB scandal, Algernon Cargill has filed an affadavit with the Supreme Court calling for fired NIB chairman Gregory Moss to be jailed.

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First murders of year as two shot dead

THE country recorded its first and second murders for the year after two men were gunned down late Saturday night.

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Woman killed in car accident

THE country recorded its first traffic fatality when a 62-year-old woman was hit by a car on Friday.

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Government 'renting office space from numbers bosses'

OFFICIALS of the “Vote No” campaign are questioning whether the government is renting office space from a commercial complex allegedly owned by numbers bosses.

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$1M cocaine seized in raid

OFFICIALS seized more than one million dollars worth of cocaine during a drug bust at Great Inagua over the weekend.

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Thursday deadline to register

BAHAMIANS who did not register to vote in the general election but wish to vote in the upcoming referendum have until Thursday to do so, according to Acting Parliamentary Commissioner Sherlyn Hall.

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Christian Council objects to question

THE Bahamas Christian Council and the Save Our Bahamas Vote No Campaign have sent a letter to Minister of National Security Bernard Nottage objecting to the wording of the web shop gambling question.

Letter from Christian Council to Dr. Nottage

On behalf of the Bahamas Christian Council and the Save Our Bahamas Vote No Campaign Committee, I hereby write to register our objection to the wording of the web shop gambling question.

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Woman testifies in fraud trial

A WOMAN and her stepfather, who are accused of attempting to defraud Kelly’s Home Centre of nearly $2,000 worth of baby items for a baby shower, took the witness stand in the Magistrate’s Court.

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Shaq backs charity effort

SPORTING superstar Shaquille O’Neal took to the basketball court in Atlantis to work with youngsters as part of his commitment to help the Paradise Children’s Foundation.

Bahamian bank key to $69m fraud ‘recoveries’

A Bahamian bank holds the key to any chance defrauded Canadian investors have of recovering their collective $69 million investment, with liquidators for both parties engaged in delicate negotiations over access to the institution’s banking records

NAGICO agent hits at insurance ‘oligarchy’

A well-known agent for Netherlands Antilles General Insurance Company (NAGICO) has hit back at claims that its ‘20 per cent or greater’ price undercutting threatens to destabilise the market, arguing it will benefit Bahamian consumers and smash an industry “oligarchy”.

Port extracts $2m per year from GB Power

The Grand Bahama Port Authority (GBPA) receives around $2 million per year from the Grand Bahama Power Company (GBPC) through various fees and “contributions”, Tribune Business can reveal.

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Super Value aiming to slash container landing fees ‘in half'

Super Value chief Rupert Roberts is working on a plan that could “cut in half” the $1,300 per container landing fee his business currently faces.

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Bahamas targeting 1.6-1.8m stopovers

TOURISM Minister Obie Wilchcombe said his Ministry is looking to increase stopover visitor arrivals to 1.6-1.8 million per year, acknowledging that the Bahamas had lost market share to rival Caribbean nations.

BTC smashes projection via 15,000 handset sales

THE Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) sold more than 15,000 handsets during the Christmas shopping period, “far exceeding” initial sales targets of between 10,000-12,000 handsets.

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PHOTO GALLERY: Athletes 'bounce' in new stadium

Haille Small, Catalyn Blayre, Doneisha Anderson, Jenae Ambrose, Keianna Albury, Juliana Duncanson, Otto Laing, Justin Brooks, Blaize Darling, Glen Knowles, Diargo Smith, Janeko Cartwright, Jamal Moss, Wesley Neymour and Lesley Dorceval were among the winners of the Odd Distance meet on Saturday.

Oceania dispute: Confirmation of meeting today

A confirmed date for a meeting between the developers and homeowner group over the long-running Oceania Heights dispute should be locked down today, according to the Exuma Chamber of Commerce’s president.

Mutual benefits in your workplace

As one year closes and another rises, businesses are often forced to re-evaluate positions taken in the previous year and sometimes do things differently.

Developer urges Gov’t: Reform quieting of Titles

A leading developer has urged the Government to “see value” in reforming the Quieting Titles Act, agreeing that it is being abused to aid pure “fraud and stealing” of land in the Bahamas.

Conferences to bring 4,000 January visitors

THE Bahamas is expecting a strong 2013 group business performance starting with three to four major conferences this month, the Minister of Tourism telling Tribune Business these were expected to generate around 4,000 stopover visitors.

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Top junior sailors make a splash

EACH year top junior sailors from the Bahamas compete at the Orange Bowl Regatta in Miami, the largest junior sailing event in North America.

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Valentino decides to go pro

AFTER falling short of reaching his ultimate goal of qualifying for the Olympic Games last year, talented amateur boxer Valentino Knowles has decided to turn professional, following in the footsteps of Taureano ‘Reno’ Johnson, who is having a phenomenal career so far.

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Sports in brief

THE New Providence Basketball Association resumed its regular season play at the CI Gibson Gym over the weekend after taking a break for the Christmas holiday.

Sunday, January 6

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Gambling vote rules ‘will mirror election’

ACTING Parliamentary Commissioner Sherlin Hall said Friday the rules governing the upcoming gambling referendum will mirror those of general elections.

Row over 'poacher' photos

THE ROYAL Bahamas Defence Force yesterday charged that photos of alleged poaching that have been doing the rounds on a social networking website are ‘outdated’.

Oceania dispute: Confirmation of meeting today


NAGICO agent hits at insurance 'oligarchy'


Conferences to bring 4,000 January visitors


BTC smashes projection via 15,000 handset sales


Bahamas targeting 1.6-1.8m stopovers


Mutual benefits in your workplace

By Ian Ferguson

Port extracts $2m per year from GB Power


Moss 'happy to be out of NIB'

FORMER chairman of the National Insurance Board Gregory Moss is reportedly “relieved” to have been fired from his job, sources close to the Marco City MP claimed Friday.

Saturday, January 5

Why you vex? 01/5/12

Bey, I vex last year cause I try so dead hard to be a crony, lackey and stooge to get one job from an MP, but no luck and cannot figure out how come all dem other people get all the jobs.”

Friday, January 4

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Gibson: NIB board will carry on

NIB MINISTER Shane Gibson yesterday insisted that the board of the nation’s social security net will carry on with its duties in the absence of a chairman.

Pope's message

I commend Pope Benedict XVI for strongly denouncing homosexuality and same-sex marriage in his annual Christmas address.

Are web shop licences lawful?

When you operate a sweepstake, giveaway, raffle or lottery firstly you are required to apply to the government, right now Ministry of Tourism, to obtain a licence.

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$1.3m Abaco road deal

THE government has signed a $1.3 million contract for road repair in Central Abaco as one item on a long list of necessary infrastructural work that needs to be done in the Family Islands.

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Public has say on gambling

THE country could be on its way to a legalised and taxed webshop industry, according to some Bahamians who have voiced their intentions of a “yes” vote in the upcoming gambling referendum.

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Two held over three murders

POLICE arrested two men in connection with three separate murders that occurred in 2011 and 2012.

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Both senior officers were out of country when gun case dropped

NEITHER minister with responsibility for legal affairs will claim responsibility for dropping a gun case last month, both saying they were out of the country on official business.

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DNA takes issue with referendum questions

DNA LEADER Branville McCartney yesterday said the government’s referendum questions “make it seem” like gambling and web shop gaming is already legal.

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Roberts does not expect Moss to join FNM

PLP Chairman Bradley Roberts said he would be “very surprised” if his party’s Member of Parliament for Marco City, Gregory Moss, were to resign from the PLP and join with the FNM in protest for been forced to resign from the National Insurance Board.

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NIB Chairman refused to give resignation

MONTHS after appointing Gregory Moss chairman of the National Insurance Board, Prime Minister Perry Christie was forced to fire him yesterday when he refused to tender his resignation as ordered.

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Negotiations ongoing over Thompson reinstatement

THE government is working to see how it can quickly resolve ongoing negotiations surrounding Elizabeth Thompson’s reinstatement at BTC, Labour Minister Shane Gibson said yesterday.

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Man to hear if drugs trial will proceed

A MAN on trial in connection with a 130 pound marijuana seizure will learn today whether or not he has a case to answer.

Bahamas First fears over ‘destabilising’ 20% price undercuts

Bahamas First yesterday pledged that it would “not lie down” in the face of “aggressive” price undercutting by an upstart Caribbean insurer, which is offering discounts of 20 per cent or greater to existing market premiums.

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City Markets staff ‘reject’ partial $1.4m payout offer

FORMER City Markets employees have “outright” rejected a $1.4 million severance pay offer, a group spokesman said yesterday, telling Tribune Business their attorneys plan to challenge a debenture which effectively makes the Finlayson family-owned majority shareholder the primary creditor.

Insurer enjoys top-line growth ‘over 20% in 2012

A Bahamian insurer yesterday said it had enjoyed top-line growth of “over 20 per cent” in 2012, suggesting that its strategy of focusing on large accounts with “good quality risks” was paying off.

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Bahamas ‘grew’ stopover market share during 2012

Hotel industry leaders yesterday disputed Moody’s assertion that the Bahamas had lost stopover visitor market share to Caribbean rivals, saying this nation “held or slightly increased” its share in 2012 - a year that 1.35 million air arrivals made the best since 2008.

Arawak Port chief: Fees ‘in line’ with Caribbean

THE Nassau Container Port’s charges are “in line” with those levied by Caribbean ports of similar size, with Arawak Port Development Company’s (APD) chief executive yesterday saying its 20-foot equipment unit (TEU) landing fees were cheaper than Barbados and almost level with the Cayman Islands.

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No Bull basketball opens doors for trio to fulfil their dreams at Niagara

IT’S one thing to want to play basketball. It’s another thing to want to get a college education.

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Community walkabouts for Operation Potcake

THIS weekend, volunteers will be canvassing various communities to spread the word about Operation Potcake.

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Rise in criminal cases at court

THE number of criminal cases coming before the Magistrate’s Court increased during 2012, according to Chief Magistrate Roger Gomez.

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‘I think there are people who just don’t want to comply with those rules’

SINCE the introduction of the National Sports Authority last year, fees have now become mandatory for the use of the facilities at the Queen Elizabeth Sports Center.

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Renaldo's Ramblings: NFL Wild Card Picks

AS MOSES descended from Mount Sinai with the stone tablets dictating the rules of NFL Playoff football, his followers took note of the inscribed: If you are taking a young quarterback (rookie/sophomore) on the’d better trust that quarterback more than you trust your barber the day before your wedding.

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BTC enjoys 28,751% mobile data growth

The Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) yesterday said it was committed to investing “more than $100 million” in upgrading its communications infrastructure, adding that its mobile data traffic had increased 28,751 per cent since its 4G network launched in December 2012.

Society critical for education direction

The Bahamian education system’s quality is a matter of great concern, and has sparked much debate about where the responsibility lies for making it better.

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Opposition blasts Govt’s economic ‘smoke and mirrors’

THE Government needs to articulate a clear strategy for reviving the Bahamian economy, the Free National Movement’s (FNM) chairman believes, arguing that the Christie administration’s approach appears to be a “combination of smoke and mirrors” without specifics.

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Odd distance meet to christen new stadium

Bahamas Association of Athletic Associations (BAAA) has announced that its Odd Distance Track and Field Meet’s 2013 edition will be staged in the new 15,000-seat Thomas A Robinson Track & Field stadium.

Second phase of Local Government Junior Council programme announced

MINISTER of Agriculture, Marine Resources and Local Government V Alfred Gray announced that the second phase of the Local Government Junior Council Programme will begin on Monday, January 7 at the RN Gomez All-Age School in the Berry Islands.

BPATFA hosts seminar for parents, athletes, presents scholarship options

WHILE they have helped a number of Bahamian student athletes to obtain athletic scholarships, the Bahamas Parents Association of Track and Field Athletes went a bit further by hosting a seminar to keep the parents and athletes abreast of the latest developments with the National Collegiate Athletic Association, the National Junior College Athletic Association and the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics.

Thursday, January 3

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Contradictory statements ‘are a cause for concern’

DNA leader Branville McCartney said contradictory statements by Prime Minister Perry Christie and NIB chairman Gregory Moss concerning the latter’s corporate credit card are very concerning.

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International gospel star brings in the new year - island style

Gospel Music Star Fred Hammond spent Christmas with the folks at Sandals Royal Bahamian checking out of the resort for the New Year’s weekend.

Overcoming negativity

THE MOST important attitude to have in your everyday life is a positive one, a number of Bahamian Christians told Tribune Religion.

A Christian's Resolution

AMONG plans to eat better, exercise more, get out of debt, spend more time with loved ones, some Christians are seeking to reach a higher level in their relationship with God this year.

Bahamas CEO is far too weak

If you think of the Bahamas as being a very large company with 300,000 shareholders (the people) and then accept that the Board of Directors is the Government of the Bahamas then logically Perry Christie is the Chief Executive Officer.

ZNS should stop airing Sesame St.

The popular educational television programme Sesame Street has had a very long run on the Broadcasting Corporation of The Bahamas (BCB) or ZNS TV 13...

The referendum on gambling

No one is going to suggest to me to vote for and by my vote support people who for years have broken the laws of The Bahamas. I do care how many hundreds of thousands they gave to political parties and away to this and that.

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'Resignation letter sent to Moss's office'

GREGORY Moss has been asked to resign as Chairman of the National Insurance Board, The Tribune understands.

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Gambling referendum questions revealed

THE TWO questions for the January 28th gambling referendum that will decide the future of gambling in the Bahamas were revealed last night by National Security Minister Dr Bernard Nottage.

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Wilchcombe defends time to debate vote

TOURISM Minister Obie Wilchcombe, with gaming in his portfolio, said yesterday he does not think three weeks is “too short a time” to properly inform the public on the pro’s and con’s of gambling.

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Minnis: Moss should have been fired months ago

OPPOSITION Leader Dr Hubert Minnis said yesterday that Prime Minister Perry Christie should have fired National Insurance Board Charmian Gregory Moss “months” ago, instead of waiting until his “back was against the wall.”

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Cargill to take further court action against Moss

COUNSEL for suspended NIB Director Algernon Cargill said he is “taking instructions” as to further possible court action against NIB chairman Gregory Moss in view of a statement he released on Tuesday.

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Minnis: Explain why gun charges were dropped

THE government must clarify why officials ordered that gun and ammunition charges dropped against a couple on claims it was a national security matter, FNM Leader Dr Hubert Minnis insisted yesterday.

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Bostwick to succeed Laing

OPPOSITION Leader Dr Hubert Minnis yesterday announced that John Bostwick II will replace former State Finance Minister Zhivargo Laing in the Senate.

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Body of politician John Martin flown to Freeport

THE body of politician John Martin, who died last week, arrived in Freeport yesterday afternoon.

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Call to deal with court cases more swiftly

A COMMITMENT to ensuring cases are heard more swiftly would be a good New Year’s resolution for the judiciary, Chief Magistrate Roger Gomez said.

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Church leader warns over attempts to sway vote

THE “national disgrace” of illegal gambling has hijacked the Christmas spirit, turning the tradition of gift-giving into an attempt to sway public opinion on the upcoming referendum, Pastor Lyall Bethel charged.

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GB Power targets 42% profits rise for 2013

Grand Bahama Power Company (GBPC) is projecting that its net income will “improve significantly” by 42.1 per cent this year, rising to $12.331 million on the back of cost efficiencies and its ‘return-based’ tariff structure.

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Arawak Port blamed for 30-48% Tropical Shipping fee rises

A MAJOR shipping company yesterday blamed fees levied by the new Arawak Cay Port for its decision to increase container landing charges by between 30-48 per cent, causing one retailer to tell this newspaper: “It’s cheaper to hire a cargo plane and fly your products in.”

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BTC outage report’s veiled CWC criticism

The Bahamas Telecommunications Company (BTC) breached a key condition of its licence during last June’s island-wide network outage, regulators said yesterday, levelling implicit criticism at majority shareholder Cable & Wireless Communications (CWC).

Bahamas financial firms on opposite side of lawsuit

Two Bahamas-based financial services providers have become embroiled on opposite sides of a lawsuit relating to the alleged “gross mismanagement” of a former $100 million investment fund.

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Burger King upgrades to boost ‘all aspects’

BURGER KING (Nassau) is set to undergo a major revamp that will include infrastructure upgrades and an array of new menu options set to launch this month.

Stiffening your design resolve

Henry Ford said, and I quote: “Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, but this time more intelligently.” Another year has come as we bid farewell to 2012. And with every New Year come new resolutions. Some people embrace the concept, while others pale at the thought altogether.

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Three-time NBA champ Rick Fox encourages basketball campers in Pinewood

A COLLABORATION between the country’s longest summer basketball programme and the Pinewood community proved to be a resounding success in its inaugural effort, highlighted by an appearance from three time NBA champion Rick Fox.

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'Monty's Six-A-Side' in aid of national soccer team player's medical bills

The local soccer community came out in droves to lend its support to one of its own on his road to recovery.

Wednesday, January 2

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VIDEO: Comedy group works its 'boongie' off

Members of the Atlanta-based comedy group Dormtainment are working their ‘boongies’ off to take the Bahamian colloquial term for buttocks international. This mission, of course, is part of a bigger plan to become international comedy sensations.

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Storytellers inspire new generation of writers

More than 200 people gathered in the Crown Ballroom at the Atlantis Resort for the 3rd Annual Story Tellers Convention on December 15.

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Dance school hoping to recruit male dancers

THE ABSENCE of male dancers on stage during the latest show hosted by the National Dance Company of the Bahamas was nothing out of the ordinary. There have been no male students enrolled in the school since 2009.

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A night of film folktales and fables

CELEBRATING the talent of young Bahamian filmmakers and actors, the FilMAD Camp 2012 presented a stellar “Night of Films, Folktales and Fables” at Galleria Cinemas last month.

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Internet radio takes 'Bahamian soul' international

AN INTERNET based radio station operated by a Bahamian couple is adding several new features to its lineup this year, in an effort to reach audiences in jurisdictions that extend far beyond the borders of home.

‘Rich Forever: The Finale’ delivers on Rick Ross

THE promoters who brought Bahamians the final concert of 2012 did exactly what they said they were going to do - deliver international rap sensation Rick Ross to the Bahamas.

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Farming in January

A happy New Year to all Green Scene readers with the hope that 2013 will be a great year for you and your loved ones.

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The music year in review

SEVERAL Bahamian musicians and entertainers celebrated major milestones in 2012. In Ya Ear takes a look back at some of 2012’s most unforgettable artists, who left us with memorable music, shows, and performances.

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The country-soul man triumphs

THE X Factor USA title went to the state of Missouri. Country singer Tate Stevens was named the season two winner.

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Road Traffic chaos

COMPLETE chaos broke out at the Road Traffic Department’s Arawak Cay location on December 31 as drivers rushed to get their cars licenced and inspected ahead of the new year.

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Misick wants to return to Turks and Caicos to face justice

FORMER Turks and Caicos leader Michael Misick said he wants to return home to face justice according to news reports there.

The chill of government financial irresponsibility

AS financial analysts the world over awaited the outcome of the “negotiations” in the United States to see if they can avoid the so called fiscal cliff – the day automatic tax hikes and spending cuts kick in – many people believe it will push their economy back into a recession.

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Saxons win New Year's Parade

PAYING homage to ancient Egypt, the Shell Saxon Superstars returned to the throne as the unofficial victors of the 2013 New Year's Parade in the A category.

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Tarpum Bay's celebration of history

FOR the township of Tarpum Bay, Eleuthera, the end of 2012 was a time to celebrate history.

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Police seek man over arson case

POLICE are searching for a 23-year-old man they want to question in connection with a case of arson and theft in Andros last weekend.

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BRIEF: Man in snorkeling gear found dead on beach

A MAN was found dead ashore a beach in South Eleuthera on Monday, New Year's Eve.

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Answers demanded in dropped firearm case

THE Opposition has demanded an explanation about why MP Jerome Fitzgerald was serving as Acting Attorney General when a gun possession case was dropped.

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Extra time for attorney to pay back $100,000

A RETIRED teacher whose near $100,000 retirement savings was stolen by her former attorney, gave the court consent to extend the attorney's compensation order to an additional two weeks.

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Alert raised over land disputes

The London-based Privy Council has reiterated concerns that the Bahamas’ Quieting Titles Act can be used to steal land, saying it was “no accident” that it has heard numerous title disputes from this nation.

Wipe out’ fears over $1.3m Oceania purchases

A property owner at the controversy-torn Oceania Heights development is alleging that he has been unable to recover his late father’s $1.318 million investment, and wind-up his estate, because the developers have failed to release title documents/conveyances to him.

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Chamber chair: Make tax reform reality by 2013 Q4

The Bahamas must make tax reform happen as early as the 2013 fourth quarter, the Chamber of Commerce’s (BCCEC) chairman urging the Government to adopt an “aggressive approach” to managing the economy.

‘Land theft’ concerns on Quieting Titles Act

The London-based Privy Council has reiterated concerns that the Bahamas’ Quieting Titles Act can be used to steal land, saying it was “no accident” that it has heard numerous title disputes from this nation.

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Women's softball championship and world games qualifier this month

THE prominence of the Bahamas in the region as a softball power will hopefully again be realised as the country prepares to host the initial English Caribbean Ladies Softball Championship and World Games Qualifier in Freeport, Grand Bahama.

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'We proved that we are the best'

The CC Sweeting Cobras and the CI Gibson Rattlers proved why they are two of the best high school teams in the country.

Bay Street enjoys ‘steady’ Christmas

BAY Street merchants have described business this past Christmas season as “steady”, several telling Tribune Business they were pleased with sales over the holiday period.

NAD sees 5% passenger traffic fall over Christmas

OUTBOUND passenger traffic from the Lynden Pindling International Airport (LPIA) into the US over the Christmas holiday period decreased 5 per cent year-over year, according to airport operator, the Nassau Airport Development Company (NAD).

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Moody`s `warning` Bahamas: Look again at fiscal targets

The Bahamas has received a “warning” from Wall Street that it may need to look at its fiscal projections again, a former finance minister adding that until the Mid-Year Budget the “jury is still out” on the Christie administration’s plans.