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            [post_date] => 2017-02-09 13:07:44
            [post_date_gmt] => 2017-02-09 18:07:44
            [post_content] => As investigations involving the Ministry of Finance's minister, Dr. Ubaldus Raymond, are being conducted, the prime minister of St. Lucia, Allan Chastanet, is refusing to be apart of the controversy whatsoever. Dr. Raymond was made the focus of public attention just recently when extracts of a WhatsApp conversation between him and an 18-year-old girl, and nude photos said to be of him were being circulated on social media. The 18-year-old girl that was involved in the scandal was arrested and charged for blackmailing Raymond on the 13th of January.

Speaking publicly about the matter, minister Raymond said he would "not give in to political operatives who will use the most disgusting tactics in order to malign my name or to scare me into submission".

Since then, several calls have been for Raymond to step down from his position in the government. Prime minister Chastanet was also approached by reporters on Tuesday where he was asked for an input on the matter. He clearly stated that he will not engage in any "hearsay and who-say and would determine its course of action once investigations are completed.

Prime Minster Chastanet said: "Once the case is heard and we understand what the facts are, then everybody can jump to whatever conclusion they want based on facts. At this point, all we know is that charges have been brought against a young lady, that there are pictures in circulation and theres a bunch of hearsay".

The Prime Minister snubbed reports that his Cabinet was divided on the matter, stressing that his ministerial team was powerless to intervene and the investigation should be allowed to run its course. The development has also been condemned by several local groups including the National Students' Council. The organization stressed in a statement that better examples be set by the leaders of St. Lucia. As for the female student in the center of the controversy, the council made a case for the Government to see that support is offered to her.

Alvina Reynolds, a former Gender Relations and Health Minister, weighed in on by calling on Raymond to step aside. She insisted that he be held accountable.

As a society we must, by our actions, show that neither women nor the weak and vulnerable are made to bear a higher burden than men or persons in positions of wealth, power and authority, she said.
            [post_title] => St. Lucia PM Asked To Be Left Out Of Scandal Involving Minister in the Ministry of Finance
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St. Lucia PM Asked To Be Left Out Of Scandal Involving Minister in the Ministry of Finance

February 9, 2017
1

As investigations involving the Ministry of Finance's minister, Dr. Ubaldus Raymond, are being conducted, the prime minister of St. Lucia, Allan Chastanet, is refusing to be apart ...Continue reading

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            [post_date] => 2017-01-12 14:52:07
            [post_date_gmt] => 2017-01-12 19:52:07
            [post_content] => As the day for United States President-elect Donald Trump to take office drifts closer, the Antigua & Barbuda government administration is ensuring that the country's long standing dispute with Washington over online gaming is made a priority to be settled. This hope that they will be able to engage with this new administration led by the billionaire. Their plan involves pressing the Trump to pay up US$100 million to settle the dispute in which was won by Antigua and Barbuda before the World Trade Organization (WTO) 12 years ago.

My government believes that the new administration that is about to take office will recognize the lawfulness and justness of our actions and will quickly settle the differences that have kept our negotiators apart, announced Governor General Sir Rodney Williams on Monday at opening of a new session of Parliament as he delivered the Throne Speech.

When Antigua and Barbuda was prohibited to operate offshore internet gambling sites by the US over a decade ago, the country brought the issue before the WTO which ruled that the US was at fault having violated international trade agreements. At the hearing, Antigua argued that the country suffered a loss of US$3.4 billion a year since then from no longer having the revenue and vital jobs. Though the WTO had agreed that the US was in violation of trade agreements, Antigua and Barbuda was only awarded US$21 million. They were also given the rightto suspend certain concessions and obligations it has under international law to the United States in respect of intellectual property rights.

Several rounds of dialogue between the country has occurred since then, but Washington has failed to fully compensate the twin-island nation to this very day. On Monday, the Antigua government said that it would also pass legislation to take action as recommended by the WTO to recover the outstanding revenue.

It is my governments intention to proceed to Parliament to adopt legislation consistent with the WTO ruling allowing Antigua and Barbuda to nullify US copyright protections and to benefit from so doing, the Governor General said.
            [post_title] => Antigua & Barbuda To Pursue Deal Over Online Gaming Dispute With US As Soon As Donald Trump Takes Office
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Antigua & Barbuda To Pursue Deal Over Online Gaming Dispute With US As Soon As Donald Trump Takes Office

January 12, 2017
1

As the day for United States President-elect Donald Trump to take office drifts closer, the Antigua & Barbuda government administration is ensuring that the country's long stan...Continue reading

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            [post_date] => 2017-01-11 10:00:50
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            [post_content] => In December, a 64-year-old Moravian pastor in Jamaica was arrested by the police after he was allegedly caught in a compromising position with a teenager in his car. Rupert Clarke appeared in court just last Wednesday, January 4 and was granted bail in the sum of J$800,000 (US$6,211). He is scheduled to re-appear in court on the 13th of February.

As he awaits his court session, more of the pastor's sexual misconducts seem to be emerging as his legal troubles mount. A former Moravian minister shared his incite on the scandal where he said that the church is partly to blame.

Dr. Canute Thompson, who was an official of the church almost two years, told the Jamaica Observer newspaper that the allegation against Clarke was not the first ever brought to focus. Thompson who was dismissed from his post because of "disrespect" for the church's leadership, revealed that he remembers a time in 2014 when he had to call on the head of the church, Dr. Paul Gardner, to investigate Clarke on a similar charge. He claimed that his concerns were ignored and the churchfailed to appropriately handle charges of misconduct, including different rules for different individuals.

I have consistently raised with the church, going back to the 80s, what I have seen as double standards, Thompson told the newspaper.

When asked to comment on Dr. Thompson's assertion, Dr. Gardner said that he had received no previous complaints against Clarke. Thompson countered by releasing a series of emails with Dr. Gardner about allegations against Clarke. One of the emails published by the Jamaica Gleaner, dated the 3rd of February, 2014, revealed that Gardner responded to Thompson's concerns about Clarke.

I appreciate (your) bringing the matter about Rupert to my attention. We are doing what we can to ascertain the facts and act accordingly, Gardner had responded.
            [post_title] => More Misconduct Charges Arise For Jamaican Moravian Pastor Arrested For Allegations On Sexual Misconducts With A Teenager
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More Misconduct Charges Arise For Jamaican Moravian Pastor Arrested For Allegations On Sexual Misconducts With A Teenager

January 11, 2017
1

In December, a 64-year-old Moravian pastor in Jamaica was arrested by the police after he was allegedly caught in a compromising position with a teenager in his car. Rupert Clarke ...Continue reading