JAMAICAN NEWS: January 10th – 16th, 2015

PARTNERSHIPS INCREASE PARISH REVENUES—01/10/15
Partnerships formed by Jamaica’s Ministry of Local Government, Tax Administration Jamaica, the Ministry of Finance and Planning and Fiscal Services Limited raised revenues for parish councils for 2013-2014. Overall, revenues increase over $8 billion for the fiscal year. A combination of burial inspections and property tax collections were cited as the chief reasons for higher revenue intake.

JAMAICAN WOMEN SUFFER AS HARASSMENT LAW MAKES SLOW PROGRESS—01/11/15
Jamaican legislators have promised to enact sexual harassment laws for some time, but have yet to pass anything. This means women continue to suffer the consequences of the activity. According to Joyce Hewitt, the former president of Women’s Inc., women’s groups have lobbied for sexual harassment laws since the 1990s, and Jamaican Senator Sandrea Falconer has stated that a draft bill addressing the issue would “soon” come before the Cabinet for its consideration.

ORGANIZATION EXPRESSES WORRIES ABOUT THEFTS OF COPPER WIRE—01/12/15
Reports of frequent thefts of copper cable have raised concerns in the Private Sector Organization of Jamaica (PSOJ). The group worries that the thefts are having a negative impact on the telecommunications industry. Digicel, Flow, and LIME, members of PSOJ, alerted the organization to the problem and noted that disruptions have occurred in critical communications services. These disruptions can endanger the viability of business enterprises and the livelihood of the self-employed who rely on these utilities.

ARLENE HARRISON HENRY APPOINTED ISLAND’S FIRST FEMALE PUBLIC DEFENDER—01/13/15
Arlene Harrison Henry, a legal professional for 37 years, has been named the first female public defender in Jamaica. Sir Patrick Allen, Governor General, announced the appointment, which will go into effect on January 19, 2015.  Harrison Henry is a past president of the Jamaican Bar Association.

MANY YOUNG PEOPLE WOULD TRADE JAMAICAN CITIZENSHIP FOR OPPORTUNITY—01/14/15
According to the National Youth Values and Attitudes Survey, 43.2 percent of young people under the age of 18 stated they would give up their Jamaican citizenship in order to live in another country and gain better opportunities. Over 49 percent of young Jamaican adults said they would trade their citizenship for more opportunity. Survey researchers noted that young people do not think the nation’s current economy conditions can provide for their development in the future.

CHAMBER PRESIDENT QUESTIONS VALUE OF LOGISTICS HUB—01/15/15
Nathan Robb, president of Montego Bay’s Chamber of Commerce and an attorney, is questioning the value of the proposed logistics hub to Jamaica. Robb believes the government’s proposal represents only “remote concept” to people in the island’s rural areas, which see no clear benefits to come from the massive project.

CONSUMERS ENJOY LOW GAS PRICES—01/16/15
Petrojam announced that the prices of gasoline continue to drop, and Jamaica’s Ministry of Energy criticized operators of gas stations who continue to keep their pump prices high. The Ministry stated that users of E-10 87 fuel should be paying under $100 per liter as a result of the decreases announced by the state-owned oil refinery.

FLOW TO BE PURCHASED BY LIME—01/16/15
Philip Paulwell, Jamaica’s Minister of Science Technology Energy and Mining, gave his approval to the transfer of control of FLOW and Columbus Networks Jamaica Limited to Cable and Wireless Communications, the parent firm of Cable and Wireless Jamaica Limited, or LIME. Previously, FLOW’s parent company was Columbus International Inc. 

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DEVOTIONAL
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“Eating Habits”

Science and nutrition together have tried to find the ways of eating that is best for us. One way to accomplish this goal is to eat routinely rather than only when you want to eat. Eating balanced meals at regular intervals is one key to long term good health and given rising health risks and costs, financially and otherwise, good health is an excellent goal we should all aim for.

In the same way we have to eat nourishing food to grow healthily, getting into the Scriptures on a daily basis is a good discipline to encourage ongoing spiritual growth. The “secret” of our spiritual maturity lies in our daily routine of Bible study. Just as there are times to eat to satisfy the physical man, so we need to ensure we set aside times daily to feed and satisfy the spiritual man. While we can make it through the day by listening to worship music and reading a devotional, it is important that just as we are told to chew our food slowly to facilitate proper digestion, that we read and meditate on (turn over in our minds slowly and methodologically) the Word of God. This we can do several times per day – during our commute, at lunch, as we do housework, wherever we may be.

On the occasion of Him being tempted to turn stones into bread, Jesus affirmed the importance of satisfying the spiritual man when He reminded Satan, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4, KJV). We can get by for a while without food but we cannot get far without the Word of God. It is the lamp unto our feet and the light unto our path (Psalm 119:105). What are some of the benefits of regularly “eating” the Word? Not only do we grow spiritually and experience the blessings of obedience, but we also discover our purpose and principles for victory, power, and guidance in our lives. The food experts encourage us to not miss a meal; how much more can we not afford to miss times of spiritual nourishing.

As we go through the day taking time to satisfy the physical man’s desire for food, let us not ignore the spirit man’s need to be nourished. As the Psalmist spent time in the Word, he was led to say of the laws, statues, and fear of the Lord, “More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb” (Psalm 19:7-10). What has been your experience?

 

CEW

 

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