ONE-MINUTE READS … News from across Jamaica

February 06, 2020
The two new mobile justice units that have been donated by the Canadian Government, through the Justice Undertakings for Social Transformation programme.
The two new mobile justice units that have been donated by the Canadian Government, through the Justice Undertakings for Social Transformation programme.
Thomas Johnson, resident of British in Clarendon, tends to his donkey, which is the prime mode of transportation for residents in this small, hilly rural community.
Thomas Johnson, resident of British in Clarendon, tends to his donkey, which is the prime mode of transportation for residents in this small, hilly rural community.
Rudyard Spencer
Rudyard Spencer
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More wheels for legal aid clinics

Minister of Justice Delroy Chuck says the two newly acquired mobile justice units will significantly enhance the Legal Aid Council outreach services for persons in marginalised and deep-rural communities.

"This is going to be a game changer for small communities, rural and inner-city areas, where many of these residents don't even have the bus fare to go to a legal aid clinic to get information about justice services and generally about law," he said.

Executive director of the Legal Aid Council, Hugh Faulkner, said the units fit well with the ministry's mandate to have increased access to justice for all Jamaicans.

There are three legal aid clinics across the island - in Kingston, St Andrew and Montego Bay.

Driver-training programme targets youths

Thirty young persons from Kingston will benefit under a driver-training programme aimed at transforming them into professional public transportation agents.

Recruited through the Government's Housing, Opportunity, Production and Employment Programme, the youngsters will be undertaking 25 one-hour lessons for the next two months.

Transport Minister Robert Montague said a major aim of the programme is to enhance the professionalism within the public transportation sector.

"Over time, we will have a pool of certified professional transport agents who will be able to safely carry your children and yourself about your business. We have to be more professional as we look at [improving] this industry," he said.

The minister said that the intention is to initially train 30 persons in every parish, with a few more individuals being selected for larger parishes.

Transport operators urged to sanitise vehicles

The leadership of public transport group has urged its members to "maintain proper hygiene" to minimise the spread of infectious diseases.

Everton Newman, who heads the Transport Operators Development Sustainable Services, said bus and taxi operators should, as far as possible, ensure that the interior of their vehicles, mainly the seats, dashboard, headrest and doors are sanitise after every trip.

"We believe that prevention is better than cure," Newman said. "If possible, wear gloves or sanitised your hands and wipe your face within the hour to prevent the transfer of money that can be contaminated with any airborne virus."

CLARENDON

PNP says no to by-election

The People's National Party (PNP) said it will not contest any by-election called in South East Clarendon to fill the vacancy created by the sudden resignation of Member of Parliament (MP) Ruddy Spencer.

With a general election due by next February, but widely expected to take place by this summer, PNP General Secretary Julian Robinson said the party will await the islandwide national poll. He said that the resignation of four-term MP Spencer was contrived, and is being used by the Jamaica Labour Party to settle the political wrangling between senators Pearnel Charles Jr and Robert Morgan.

Robinson said it is unreasonable for Jamaicans to spend $30 million to pay for a by-election, when a general election, expecting to cost more than one billion dollars, is due within months.

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