Tuesday, January 18, 2022

All Children in The Bahamas are Entitled to a Decent Education

Bahamas:  Save Our Children for a Promising Future


By Dennis Dames


Save Our Bahamian Children
The Minister of Education - the Honorable Glenys Hanna Martin, has revealed that there are 8,000 delinquent students of the Virtual Learning Platform – who have been missing in action since the CoViD19 pandemic began. What a shameful social injustice.

The Minister announced that: An education recovery task force has been established and will have just 14 days to track down some 8,000 students who were inactive on the virtual learning platform throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

It’s truly a correct step in the right direction; and we know that it will take more than 14 days to arrest the serious political and social challenges in the education of our children; which has been allowed to advance in to a national crisis over the last two years and counting - by inept political leaders, wayward parents, neglectful guardians and derelict communities.

It’s a clear violation of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights - by a country with the resources and capabilities to do better. It’s child abuse, abandonment and neglect on a wholesale scale in The Bahamas – in my humble opinion. The bitter harvest of social instability and decline is staring us right in our eyes, and we appear to be foolishly indifferent about it.

Our country – The Bahamas, is on the sure path of a failed state – where we proudly, carelessly and unwittingly breed and nurture antisocial citizens from young– in my view.

Children Have Rights
We seem not to care about the expanding vices in our nation - caused by youthful deviants, as we feel so safe and secured behind our security fences, walls, bars and gates – with cameras keeping watch of our respective properties 24/7. What a tragedy!

No one in The Bahamas is safe right now – in an unequal and unbalanced society of chronic social rot, as we continue to treat our precious future with utter social neglect and contempt. Our deserving rewards are just beginning to manifest themselves.

Thursday, January 13, 2022

The politics of distance education in The Bahamas

CoViD-19 has accelerated the institution of schooling via Internet platforms on a national level in The Bahamas


By Dennis Dames


Education Bahamas
I see that the politics of remote learning is not keeping pace with the reality of it all. Indeed, virtual learning is a new cultural pill that many reluctant Bahamian parents will have to swallow, and adjust to eventually.

CoViD-19 has awakened the world to the great possibility that schooling as we know it today, will be done more from home – than in the classroom, in the not too distant future- in my view. That’s something that every parent with children of school age, need to bear in mind.

There are presently political decisions being considered in The Bahamas and elsewhere about the question of school opening; even though CoViD19 is raging- and no one can say for sure - what the impact of future CoViD19 variants will be on communities of the world.

Remote Learning
The madness continues nonetheless. Every visionary and pragmatic politician in this universe - ought to be planning and preparing their population for a revolution in education – outside of the classroom setting- in my opinion. Instead of catering to political correctness in education, the focus should be on the new normal and actuality of distance learning.

With the advent of the Internet, the process should of started a long time ago – in my humble opinion. CoViD19 simply exposed our serious weaknesses and deficiencies in public education of The Bahamas. Children have computers at home to play games and flirt all day with, but they do not have any for educational purposes. It’s truly a mad world.

Online Education
Parents want schools to reopen, because the majority of them are only looking for babysitters – in my opinion. The performances of our public school graduates prove this. Our children wear the best clothing to proms, but most of them can’t even write a proper or readable sentence- after twelve years of education in the public school system of The Bahamas. More and more chickens are coming home to roost, as we unwittingly burn in the fire of social and political bankruptcy - and stupidity.

Homeschooling in The Bahamas has been growing productively for more than twenty years. There are many Bahamian children who have never sat in a school classroom in their life, and the very most of them are better educated than those who have. I have read about one young lady who won a Lyfordcay Foundation Scholarship. Yes, a homeschooler who might be sitting in a classroom for the first time - in a prestigious university somewhere.

E-Education
Learning can be done anywhere - even in one’s backyard. But our children for the most part, are not programmed or encouraged to learn. They are allowed to roam the streets in mass numbers all day and night long – from young ages. The culture is all about friends, play and the good old gang life – while the parents do their things all day and night- in the web shops, bars, drug houses and so on.

So, open the schools for their children while the mutating CoViD19 variants keep coming to our shores. Open the schools while the hospitals overflow with CoViD19 emergencies. Open the schools while CoViD19 spreads like wildfire in the Bahamian society. Let’s proudly show the world exactly how stupid we and our politicians are.

The focus should be on the question of: How can we successfully facilitate the new culture of digital learning and training - for the sustainable benefits of all Bahamian children, and adults. First, there needs to be a clear national resolve to institute e-learning for the lasting rewards of every school child and adult in The Bahamas.

Digital Education
Remote education in The Bahamas for all - can be supported by programs like, Urban Renewal; which is presently underutilized, but has enormous potential to have enduringly positive influences on Bahamian communities - in so many valuable and meaningful ways.

A lot of the unemployed in our country can also be usefully employed in the noble effort of the institution of distance learning in the entire Bahamas; while also taking advantage of golden opportunities to acquire other gainful skills through free digital instructions.

CoViD-19 has accelerated the institution of schooling via Internet platforms on a national level in The Bahamas. Many private schools are already in the grove of mixing classroom instructions with distance Web based classes; and have successfully implemented alternative days for respective students to attend in-class learning.

The public education system needs to get its act in order. We know of the many social challenges which make this difficult -like: poverty, single parenthood, dysfunctional communities and so on.

Virtual Learning
That’s where fostering and maintaining strong community partnerships come in. In can be done, as the infrastructure to make it happen - is already in place. We have the Church congregations, Urban Renewal Program, community policing, social services, the local business establishments, and idle volunteers who are willing and qualified to make their good contributions to the worthy initiative.

We have a legal and moral obligation to ensure that all Bahamian children receive top notch education and training - for the future development of the nation. CoViD19 should not cause us to lose sight of such a noble virtue.

Online Schooling
Teachers need family and community help in encouraging our children in the public school system to embrace and, take advantage of remote schooling. Teachers should not be looking for students who are delinquent in their attendance of distance classes - in the public school system. That’s a family and community function. Someone in position of trust and responsibility- should be in contact the teacher and school - instead. I am not one who is apathetic about parental and community carelessness, abuse, and neglect of the welfare of our future - the children.

There is no sound reason why every child in The Bahamas who is able to - is not regularly attending virtual classes - when in session. None!

Away with the pitiful apathy, and let’s get it right for the sake of future generations. We have the means and resources available to us in The Bahamas - to ensure that every child receives their just education entitlement.

Embrace E-learning
Great heaps of public funds are wasted every year on bogus contracts, political patronage, theft, reckless government decisions and spending. Let’s commit to arrest the massive wastages of the people’s money, so that we can generate the necessary funding to support the further advancement of virtual education for every child in The Bahamas.

Tuesday, January 11, 2022

Wayne Munroe - Defense Counsel or Minister of National Security?

Wayne Munroe Q.C., - Defense Attorney or Minister of National Security?


From Free National Movement (FNM) Chairman, Carl R Culmer Sr


Wayne Munroe - Attorney
The great Defense Attorney Wayne Munroe Q.C. must take off his litigious hat, and remember that he is the Minister of National Security, and govern himself accordingly. It is unacceptable for the Minister of National Security to openly comment on an active investigation of a police involved shooting, particularly when the deceased was also a member of the Armed Forces under the Minister’s remit.
The careless commentary preempts the official investigation and prejudices the Coroners inquest proceedings. The Minister should not recklessly and arrogantly make himself the Judge and Jury on the veracity of the body-cam footage. The Minister’s assertion that the footage is “consistent” with anyone’s statement can only properly come after a thorough formal investigation. We are confident that the process and protocols established for police involved shootings are sufficient to determining issues of facts.
This is not the first time that Minister Munroe has done this. Minister Munroe must refrain from making premature remarks, stop interfering with this and any investigation - and let the Professional Public Servants do their jobs.

If the Minister insists and continues acting as Defense Counsel, he should take up the cause of the wrongfully terminated Urban Renewal workers, and the many other Bahamians who find themselves unjustly affected by the government’s reckless and harsh handling of hard working Bahamians.

We in the Free National Movement extend our condolences to the family of Defense Force Officer, Leading Seaman, Rodney Adderley, his colleagues and to all those affected by this tragic and unfortunate incident.

Friday, December 31, 2021

We must grasp the essence of this pandemic phenomenon

NATIONS MUST AVOID THE TAILSPIN IN THE WHIRLWIND THAT PANDEMICS GENERATE!


By Professor Gilbert Morris


Pandemics are not medical or health crisis, but logistical/demographic and informational crisis!


About Pandemics
The grail - even if not holy - had better be wholly, universal free national testing: if someone walks in and is found to be infected, reporting that in a national dashboard is utterly useless. Therefore, the first intensity is our mindset and methods.

I warned about using arithmetical approaches to an exponential phenomena; which is confirmed in basic calculus.
I warned that pandemics are not medical or health crisis, but logistical/demographic and informational crisis!
I warned that the thinking and decisions in a pandemic must be at the speed of the pandemic and so the correct mindset is to learn, unless and relearn instantly. That means there can be no pride of decision. Every decision must have a team questioning that decision.

Second, I warned that we can’t establish a “proportionality constant” (the efficacious measure of the social protocols) without a data driven platform for decision-making including eDiagnostic Surveys and Bluetooth contact tracing…establishing disease ‘pattern and flow’, so decisions are made at velocities of the disease spread.
Beyond that I warned of the impacts of fiscal/financial/economic triage.
There are only two meaningful solution thresholds…two symbiotic options that must be the result of each other:

- 1. Feed the Peg and
- 2. Free national tests!
At the international level, we must beware:

- 1. Of optimisations ostensibly to save lives which leads to greater deaths…such as lockdowns that crippled food supply chains!
- 2. Vaccine visas because they are unscientific counterproductive bullshit!
- 3. DNA becoming Identity because sovereignty would be finally and absolutely neutered
- 4. Disequilibrium in boarder entry requirements across nations because tourists destinations must lead in this particular
- 5. The adoption of constitutionally imprudent exponential technologies that carry and adapt unDemocratic tail risks!

There are those insipid reasoners, lost in pedantry, who think they are reading a list of solutions. More cognitively graceful readers see correctly, a system.
Universal free testing is a simple idea. But when imagined as a data generator to establish pattern and flow of the disease spread, it becomes more powerful. A database is an old idea now. But when seen as establishing informational leverage to read back against the viral pattern and flow, revealing interstitial demographics, it becomes as efficiently extrapolative as exponentially powerful. When you say we need tourists because we need US dollars to fortify and facilitate domestic demand and balance of payments, universal testing is then merged with economic prospects and so in this manner and evermore deeply, a series of ideas are systematised as a concept; an evolving tool, subject to constant tinkering - a mechanism - to approach this crisis proactively.
We must grasp the essence of this pandemic phenomenon; which is not about infection rates…it’s about cultivating a mechanism to anticipate and compensate for tail risks in real time, at scale and across categories!
Let that sink in….!

Monday, December 13, 2021

What part Hon Renward Wells played in the whole Letter of Intent (LOI) controversial affair - concerning Stellar Energy Bahamas

CONCERNS ABOUT HOW BUSINESS APPEARS TO BE DONE IN THE BAHAMAS

...there is all this unfavorable chatter among investors about doing business in The Bahamas



BAHAMAS, "WERE INVESTORS DUPED INTO DOING AN ASSESSMENT TO WIN A CONTRACT?" - Words from the Tribune commenting on the circumstances of the LOI controversy -  The Tribune carried on to say they were "CONCERNED ABOUT HOW BUSINESS APPEARS TO BE DONE IN THE BAHAMAS" - This article gets right to the heart of the matter and questions what part Hon Renward Wells played in the whole affair - The Tribune go even further asking, quote -

"Is this how we hoodwink our investors? In other words, the Letter of Intent was the go-ahead to do the studies, making the investors believe that it guaranteed that the contract would be accepted in the end? Was this company duped into spending this money to save the Bahamas government further expenditure? No wonder there is all this unfavorable chatter among investors about doing business in the Bahamas — they all seem to know that they have to tip-toe in, but at all times watch their back." -  THE STELLAR ENERGY GRIEVANCE MUST NOW BE FINALLY ADDRESSED TO SHOW THAT THE GOVERNMENT CAN WIN BACK THE CONFIDENCE OF OVERSEAS INVESTORS....


1.  ANSWERS ARE NOW VERY MUCH DUE  AND THEY SHOULD BE GIVEN BY DR MINNIS IN PARTICULAR EXPLAINING TO BAHAMIANS WHY HE HAS ACCEPTED HON WELLS IN HIS CABINET AFTER HAVING LAMBASTED HIM IN PUBLIC -  DOES DR MINNIS THINK THAT BAHAMIANS HAVE FORGOTTEN THE PAST OR THAT THEY ARE DENSE? WHAT IS THE "POWER" THAT HON WELLS HAS OVER ALL PARTIES AS MANY PEOPLE SEEM TO THINK?  DR DUANE SANDS SEEMED TO HAVE INDICATED THEY ARE AFRAID OF SOMETHING HE KNOWS? IF SO IT WOULD BE DISGRACEFUL AND A SMEAR ON THE REPUTATION OF THE BAHAMAS AND THE INTEGRITY OF THE NATION.

 

2.  WOULD THIS HAVE HAPPENED IF A FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT AND A REGISTER OF PRIVATE INTERESTS BY PUBLIC OFFICIALS HAD BEEN IN PLACE? 


3.  DOES ANYONE REALLY BELIEVE THAT DR MINNIS WOULD HAVE ACCEPTED HON RENWARD WELLS INTO HIS PARTY AND IN CABINET WITHOUT KNOWING ALL THIS AND THE REAL REASONS WHY THE LOI WAS ISSUED?  DOES HE REALLY BELIEVE THAT THERE WAS NO CABINET "APPROVAL" AND HENCE A VALID ENFORCEABLE "CONTRACT" IN PLACE AT THE TIME? IS HON WELLS DIRECTLY IMPLICATED IN THE "PLOTTING AND SCHEMING" OF THE FORMER PM AGENTS, MESSERS ALLEN AND AND FORBES AS IS INCREASINGLY LOOKS?


4.  WHAT CAUSED  DR MINNIS' SUDDEN  COMPLETE CHANGE OF POSITION AFTER RENWARD WELLS STEPPED TO THE OTHER SIDE? POLITICAL EXPEDIENCE, BLATANT HYPOCRISY OR WORSE?


5.  CAN DR MINNIS JUSTIFY SUPPORTING MR WELLS WHO IS PART OF A SERIOUS LEGAL CLAIM WITH CONNOTATIONS OF BLATANT ABUSE OF PROCESS WHICH IS FINALLY PROCEEDING IN THE SUPREME COURT - AND WHERE ULTIMATELY HE AND ALL OTHER PUBLIC OFFICIALS INVOLVED, PAST AND PRESENT, WILL BE SUMMONED FOR CROSS-EXAMINATION?


6.  WHY HAS THE LOCAL PRESS, SO EAGER AT THE TIME TO COVER THE LOI SCANDAL STOPPED REPORTING ON THIS VERY PUBLIC CASE WHICH SERIOUSLY QUESTIONS THE STANDING OF THE BAHAMAS AS  A CREDIBLE AND TRANSPARENT INVESTMENT DESTINATION AND DRAMATICALLY UNDERLINES THE NEED OF PROPER POLITICAL GOVERNANCE RULES?  IS IT BECAUSE HON WELLS IS NOW "PROTECTED" BY DR. MINNIS?


ALL THE ANSWERS TO THE LOI SAGA WILL BE REVEALED AT THE MUCH DELAYED COURT HEARING,  NEVERTHELESS, STELLAR ENERGY HAS ASKED AND WILL OBTAIN JUDICIAL DISCOVERY OF ALL DECISIONAL PROCEEDINGS IN ORDER TO GET TO THE BOTTOM OF THE FULL BACKGROUND OF THE LOI ISSUANCE  ONCE AND FOR ALL, IN THE BEST INTEREST OF THE EVENTUAL ESTABLISHMENT OF THE TRUTH:  JUSTICE DELAYED IS JUSTICE DENIED.


LISTEN TO THIS VOICE RECORDING OF THE ARTICLE AND MAKE UP YOUR OWN MIND.


The Board of Stellar Energy looks forward to the next Court Hearing which is still to be announced  and is already over two months late - the new case judge, Rt Honorable Chief Justice promised in last interlocutory hearing back on 22 May to have it held between the 5 July and 21 July Court Hearing that the Attorney General has put off since January 2017 (!), for reasons that can only be fathomed - in all instances having failed to submit formal defenses and used technicalities and open and blatant - and fully documented breaches of Supreme Court Rules to kick the can down the road  - the original draft defense, still not finalized after almost 4 (four) years (!), stating that Mr Wells acted "ultra vires", an inexplicable position considering that Mr Wells sits in the same present Cabinet of the Attorney General.  


Stellar Energy's original Default Judgement filed in November 2016 is still extant and surprisingly unchallenged up to the present time. The Attorney General's Office has ignored and breached innumerable Rules of the Supreme Court over the last 4 years and Stellar Energy will finally put them to task in front of the new Honorable Judge to finally stop this abuse of process that does not reflect well at all on the international reputation of the Bahamas judiciary and of the Bahamas Government, especially in this time where the Bahamas need the support of supranational entities and credibility to apply for it.   As reported in previous posts, disappointingly, also last Court Hearing  22 May, that we had optimistically named The Day of Reckoning has proved to be a mere interlocutory Hearing, very much along the lines of the previous one of 3 March.  


The submissions made so far by the Office of the Attorney General still fail to present a formal defense and are in serious breach of several Rules of the Supreme Court, whilst Stellar Energy's attorney had diligently submitted a long while ago his own submissions and applications for Discovery and Re-pleading.  As a result of the Crown's counsel conduct, no debate could take place at the time on the merits of the long-awaited applications by the Crown, inexplicably extant since November 2016, almost 4 years ago, indicating clearly either an uneasiness to proceed publicly, a lack of legal preparation or uncertainty of what to plead; an intent to procrastinate proceedings by kicking the can down the road, or a combination of these.  Not exactly the position of a counterpart, the Attorney General, who is confident and credible in challenging Stellar Energy's very serious claims if they are unwilling or afraid for them to be openly debated and adjudicated in the Court Rooms according to the Law.  At least proper serious attention has been given by appointing the most senior and respected judge of the Bahamas, The Honorable Chief Justice Brian Moree, internationally acknowledged as a fine jurist and a top judge, who is finally expected to ensure fair hearings and a fair ruling going forward and that no further abuse of the Court process or procrastinations are allowed or tolerated.  


Sadly, the Bahamians have not yet had the opportunity to start to have the promised and much awaited answers to the disturbing questions still left open since the issuance, leak and breach of the LOI now 6 years ago.  The events as unfurled at the time were commented on by the current Prime Minister, Dr Minnis in his then position of Leader of the Opposition, and confirm both this view and the full legitimacy of Stellar Energy legal claim and the serious reservations concerning Mr Wells' role in the LOI saga.  READ the full Press Release by Dr Minnis on 6 August 2014 (https://www.stellar-energy-bahamas.com/fnm-leader-on-renward-wells-saga/), which makes exceptional reading.   


Meanwhile Mr Wells has just been moved in Cabinet to Minister of Health to replace Dr Duane Sands: a sideways move at best - surely he hoped for a better promotion but he is unlikely to get it or even to stay in Cabinet for long -  until the big cloud of his involvement in the LOI saga will be fully dissipated in the Courts and in public: there is much more than meets the eye and too many questions raised by Bahamian citizens have not been answered yet notwithstanding the solemn promises of their politicians from both sides - and with the local press basically ignoring their pleas and try to brush this scandal under the carpet.  For the time being Renward Wells seems to be intent on maintaining the silence of leaders of both parties -  Dr Minnis hinted at that in a previous broadcast that we posted on Thursday 6 August and it made uncomfortable viewing. 


The Board of Stellar Energy has also instructed its new local Counsel, Ayse Rengin Dengizer Johnson & Co. to advance the present Appeal against the initial ruling pertaining to Mr Wells, who together with Mr Allen and Mr Forbes are alleged to be agents of the former Prime Minister, Perry Christie and to seek Orders of Discovery, and filed into the record affidavits which outline very serious allegations and fully documented allegations against the past PLP administration, which include Mr Wells in his former capacity and, by extension, the current FNM Administration.  


The affidavit of facts and supporting evidence, filed on 29 April 2019 and not yet heard in Court, makes exceptional reading, detailing an elaborate conspiracy to defraud, extort and circumvent by issuing to Stellar Energy several letters, commitments and LOI's, some addressed to supranational entities which were aimed at obtaining equity and cash benefits to a local Bahamas Interest Group, which Stellar Energy maintains included senior members of the past and present administration, but had the ultimate effect to create a constructive contract that was subsequently breached.  


Further evidence available shall be disclosed at trial.  In any event and irrespective of the judiciary process in progress, ultimately the evidence available in possession of Stellar Energy will become public knowledge since it is in the public interest to assist with the establishment of good governance and transparency so much required by foreign investors to safely invest in the Bahamas.   


Justice delayed is justice denied, and Stellar Energy simply will not allow this.


Source 

  

Read full press releases on our website: https://www.stellar-energy-bahamas.com/press-releases/


...and the original article here: http://www.tribune242.com/news/2015/jan/23/were-investors-duped-doing-assessment-win-contract/

Friday, December 10, 2021

The Coalition of Independents - COI on the Resignation of Democratic National Alliance - DNA Party Leader, Arinthia Komolafe

10th December, 2021

Press Statement of the Leader of the Coalition of Independents on the resignation of the leader of the DNA.


COI Bahamas
The Coalition of Independents has been made aware of the immediate resignation of DNA leader Arinthia Komolafe. We would like to extend best wishes to Mrs. Komolafe on her future endeavors. Mrs Komolafe can be proud of the fact that she took on a great mantle as the second female leader of a political party in the Bahamas. The COI believes that more women should step forward into the political arena to assist in guiding our people into the New Bahamas.

 

DNA Party Bahamas
Mrs. Komolafe has stated that she is not leaving front line politics while her resignation speech implies that she is departing from the DNA because she feels that third party politics is too challenging. This could mean that she may choose to align with one of the parties that she has been speaking out against for the previous two elections. While this would be disappointing, we know that as a talented Bahamian she would be an asset to any organization she is a part of.


Former DNA Party Leader, Arinthia Komolafe
The Coalition of Independents will continue to stand firm as the only political alternative with a vision to empower all Bahamians. We are unwavering in our view that the natural resources of this nation belongs to the Bahamian people and that every Bahamian should benefit from them. We are resolute in our belief that one day Bahamians will be put first in our nation. 


Lincoln Bain

Leader


Coalition of Independents

-End

Source/Comment

Friday, October 22, 2021

Hubert Minnis jumps again - before he was pushed!

Statement by the Leader of the Free National Movement (FNM) Party - The Hon. Dr. Hubert Minnis


Minnis has declared he will not run for the FNM leadership, nor will he allow his name to be placed in nomination!



Hubert Minnis
At the end of November, the Free National Movement will hold a one-day convention to elect the Leader of the Party.  I will not nominate for the leadership nor will I allow my name to be placed in nomination.  I wish those who will contest for the leadership the very best.  

I will continue to serve in the House of Assembly as the Member of Parliament for Killarney.  I again thank the constituents of Killarney for their support since 2007 and during the recent general election.

As a former prime minister and in whatever role is assigned to me, I will support the work of the Official Opposition to advocate on behalf of the Bahamian people and to hold the Government accountable.

We remain in a deadly global pandemic.  I will continue to promote measures to save and to protect the lives and livelihoods of Bahamians, utilizing my experience in office and as a medical doctor.  I will never tire in advocating for the needs of the poor, the disadvantaged and the more vulnerable in our society.

It has been an extraordinary privilege to serve our country as prime minister and as a member of parliament.  I thank the Bahamian people and the members of the FNM for their support and encouragement.  I also thank the many well-wishers for their advice, prayers and assistance.

The Free National Movement has an extraordinary legacy, guided by the values of freedom, equality and opportunity for all.  At our 50th anniversary, there is much to celebrate as we renew our mission and embrace the future.

I have often spoken of the God of New Beginnings.  May God bless the FNM with wisdom, discernment and fortitude.  

And may God bless our Bahamas.