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Fuh Fun “Drummer Boy”, Richard (Rick) DaSilva recently celebrated his 61st Birthday in fine musical style with a boisterous jam session at his Brooklyn Ontario home. The drink, eat, make merry music, drink some more session was well attended by DaSilva’s musician friends, as well as a few who were completely devoid of any musical talents!
DaSilva was joined by his fellow Fuh Fun band members George DeSilva, Wayne Dalmada and the Irwin brothers Brian and Andy in hosting the occasion, at which copious amounts of the finest El Dorado rums were consumed! Eric Azeez, Iqee Gajray, Maurice Serrao of the Ramblers and Triple Play’s Raymond (Chinny) Lee Own were among those who were there to help DaSilva celebrate.
Guyana Poised For Gold And Oil Breakout!
Guyana’s Minister of Natural Resources, Raphael Trotman, told a January 1 press gathering that national gold production came in at 690,000 ounces during 2016. Marking the highest level of output the nation has ever seen.
Trotman also told reporters that the government has given the go-ahead for a $500 million oil and gas services center — to be built on the coast about 100 kilometers southeast of Guyana’s capital city, Georgetown.
That’s coming on the back of ExxonMobil’s announcement this past July that it has found up to 1.4 billion barrels of oil equivalent in the Guyana offshore. Which has put this tiny nation clearly in the sights of a major buildout for petroleum development.
Ian Hanomansing, We “Bwoy” Making Waves On Canadian National TV!
To be a substantial part of ‘The National’ going forward, obviously, I’d be thrilled.” That’s about as close as Ian Hanomansing will get to saying, yes, he’d like Peter Mansbridge’s job. Mansbridge, 68, made headlines recently when he announced on-air that he would step down as CBC’s chief correspondent and anchor after the Canada 150 celebrations in Ottawa next July.
That leaves CBC nearly a year to find a successor. Many would consider Hanomansing to be the heir apparent. As host of Vancouver-produced “CBC News Network with Ian Hanomansing,” he won the most recent Canadian Screen Award as Canada’s top national news anchor. He’s also a familiar face having filled in over the years for Mansbridge on “The National.”
Picture By Urban Mixer (Raj Taneja) – Uploaded on Flickr as Journey through Shangri-La, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link
Arti Ricknauth Receives FedEx Top Honor
Popular Guyanese-Canadian Arti Ricknauth has been honored by his employers Fedex Express Canada, as a recipient of the prestigious Canadian Award of Excellence from FedEx Express Canada for outstanding leadership, and personal and professional commitment.
This is the highest honor that can be bestowed upon any Fedex Canada staff member. Ricknauth was chosen to be one of the 40 winners out of the many highly talented persons nominated from among the 7000-strong team at FedEx Canada.
The Advocates for Etobicoke Youth (A.F.E.Y)held the 12th annual Children’s Xmas party at the Woodbine banquet hall on December 12th 2015. This event first started as an initiative of Toronto lawyer, Dhaman Kissoon and Superintendent Ron Taverner of Toronto Police, 23 Division. The intention was to bring some joy a handful of needy families in the North Etobicoke area. Over the years the numbers have grown steadily to the point where this year there almost 500 kids with a parent or guardian in attendance.
For ride-sharing, you call Uber.
But for bride-sharing, call Michelle Cliffe.
As a Toronto wedding planner, Michelle Cliffe, the daughter of former Caribbean Graphic Online Editor Malcolm Cliffe and his wife Emily, has developed the concept of wedding sharing. Aimed at allowing engaged couples to combat being priced out of getting married in the GTA, Cliffe is proposing engaged couples consider “wedding-sharing” their big day with one or two other couples using the same venue, caterer and vendors, but with their ceremony times staggered.
“A wedding share allows you to split those big costs with other couples,” said Cliffe, whose start-up company Love Collective will begin facilitating eloping services, pop-up weddings – getting married at a Christmas Market or music festival, for example – and wedding shares beginning in the New Year.
Under the patronage of its Canadian High Commissioner Clarissa Reihl, the Guyanese-Canadian Community is developing plans for a major Ottawa based celebration of Canada’s 150th Anniversary of Confederation. The one day celebration will be held on May 21, 2107, in the Horticulture Building of Ottawa’s Lansdowne Park.
Visit Guyana, Trade and Invest displays by Guyana Tourism and Go-Invest will provide an enticing backdrop for the full day’s activities which will include a food fair, cultural show and an invitation only closed Country Reception. Several of Guyana’s most popular international and Canadian artistes are likely to participate in the event ending Cultural Explosion which will cap off the celebrations.
“Electric Avenue” famed Eddie Grant, “Not A Blade Of Grass” former Tradewinds leader Dave Martin and the “Guyana Baboo” man Terry Gajraj are among the internationally famed Guyanese-born artistes who’s participation is being pursued.
Click here to get the Nov. 24 2016 online edition. Click here for the Nov. 24 2016 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Saints Toronto Alumni Presents Scholarships To College Students!
The Saint Stanislaus College Alumni Association is continuing effort to upkeep and maintain the academic excellence of their Alma Mater, by offering scholarships. This year the school is observing its 150th anniversary and in its quest to boost the teaching complement, the Toronto and Guyana Chapters of the Old Students Association awarded two scholarships each, to the University of Guyana, to four former students.
Upon graduation, these scholarship awardees will return to the college to teach in specific fields. In addition to tuition, the scholarships include book and travel allowances along with a free laptop computer each, donated by the Toronto Alumni.
Explore Guyana 2017 Magazine Launched
GEORGETOWN, The Explore Guyana 2017 Magazine was unveiled on November 19 evening at the Umana Yana in Kingston, Georgetown. Business Minister Dominic Gaskin; GTA Director Indranauth Haralsingh; President of THAG, Andrea de Caires; and the Publisher of Explore Guyana, Lokesh Singh unveil the 2017 Explore Guyana magazine
The event was organised by the Tourism and Hospitality Association of Guyana (THAG), in collaboration with the Guyana Tourism Authority (GTA) and entailed the launching of the Magazine and announcement of THAG Essay Competition winners.
Andy McWatt Pursuing A Passion For Technology Recruitment
Since finding a passion and aptitude for recruitment within the technology space Cameron (Andy) McWatt’s goal has always been continue to push himself to find new opportunities to not only build his network of IT professionals and his personal skill set, but also to help grow Toronto’s tech community as a whole. Andy’s long term career aspirations is to one day find himself in a position that combines his love for technology, fitness, people management and career development preferably within the Toronto Start-up community. In pursuing his goals, he finds inspiration from the visionaries (big and small) of today’s technology landscape. Foremost among these are Elon Musk Head of Tesla and Sam Parr founder of TheHustle.co, a business news site targeted to the millennial generation
As the twenty-four year old son of Caribbean Graphic’s Publisher Tony McWatt and his former wife Tracey, Cameron Anderson McWatt, affectionately known to his family as “Andy Pan,” is now well on the way to establishing himself as a bona fide member of the NexGen Wave Makers, Canadian born children of Caribbean parentage who are fashioning highly impressive achievements, while making names for themselves in the wider Canadian society. Andy’s success to date as an IT Human Resources Recruiter has been fueled by his aptitude for client and customer relationship management, built through interacting with stakeholders throughout the hiring and sales processes he now manages on a daily basis.
Sumptuous Exotic Menu On Offer At Fuh Fun’s Old Year’s Night Gala.
An exotic and sumptuous menu will be on offer for attendees to Fuh Fun’s 2016 “Leh We Fete” Old Year’s Night Gala. Long since dubbed as “the very best Old Year’s Night Party in town,” the annual Gala will be held on December 31, at its customary venue, Scarborough’s Rembrandt Banquet Hall (930 Progress Avenue).
The evening’s fun will commence with a 6:00 – 7:00 pm, entertainment graced Cocktail Reception during which a medley of mushrooms and zucchini fried in a light tempura batter Hor’s D’oeuvres, accompanied by veggies and dip, will be served. At 7:00 pm sharp guests will be ushered in to the Banquet Hall to commence the three course dinner.
Trump’s US Presidential Election Win Crashes Canada’s Immigration Website
Citizenship and Immigration Canada’s website was “temporarily inaccessible” to users as the U.S. election results were being tallied, the federal government says, confirming that the outage was due to a surge in people trying to access it. As the results of the U.S. presidential election poured in on November 8 night, users complained over social media about the apparent website outage.
Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada spokesperson Lisa Filipps confirmed that the website, “became temporarily inaccessible to users as a result of a significant increase in the volume of traffic.”
Shared Services Canada “worked through the night and continues to work to resolve the issue to ensure that the website is available to users as soon as possible,” Filipps added.
President Granger Urges Diaspora Based Guyanese To Return Home!
Stating that Guyana is the most bountiful country in the Caribbean, President David A. Granger called on the diaspora to return to their homeland, and said with their help, the country would overcome some of the challenges it faces.
President Granger, while addressed a gathering at the Guyana Mission in Manhattan, recently said, “I have no doubt at all that the course we are plotting would be beneficial to our entire nation. There is petroleum proceed that would be put into our sovereign fund so that your children would not have to worry about employment, economics and our environment. We are on the right course, tell ‘me when you want to come home”, quipped President Granger, who reminded the expatriates that Guyana is a great place to retire.
Gala To Celebrate Barbados’ 50th Independence Anniversary
There will be a grand celebration of the fiftieth anniversary of independence of Barbados from England at Markham Convention Centre,
2901 Markham Road, Toronto on Saturday November 19th. This gala is presented by the Barbados Independence Celebrations Committee(B.I.C.C.), under the patronage of the Honourable Haynesley Benn, Consul General for Barbados at Toronto.
Several persons living in Ontario will be given awards at this dinner, show, and dance. There will be live entertainment by Susan G and Neu
Jenarashun, the Gibbs Brothers, WiMotion Dancers, and Sammy Clarke Tuk Band, among other performers! Charles Waterman will do a special reading from one of the works of the outstanding Barbadian Canadian author Austin “Tom” Clarke who recently died. Dj Niterider will be on the wheels of steel.
Patrons will have a chance to participate in live and silent auctions. Also they will be eligible to win door prizes of return tickets to anywhere Caribbean Airlines flies and return tickets to Barbados sponsored by Marville Travel Inc.
Chanelle Lee of Barbadian heritage is the new Miss West Indian Canadian Queen 2016. Chanelle was crowned on Sunday, Oct. 16th, 2016 at the Red Rose Convention Centre.
Chanelle initially impressed both the audience and judges with her talented comedic skit and stunning couture evening gown, that was especially designed for her. She sealed the deal with a very powerful speech on Anxiety, the social issue she indicated would be her choice to bring more awareness for throughout her reign.
Guyana Receives €24.4M Sugar Funds
Stefani Manservisi, Director General, for International Cooperation and Development of the European Commission had handed over to Guyana €24,424,000 euros. According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs’s October 25 News Release, this sum is related to the action programme adopted by Guyana which would see the European Union (EU) release monies periodically as part of the Accompanying Measures Programme (AMP) for sugar. The disbursements had been suspended following the prorogation of Parliament by former President Donald Ramotar in late 2014.
Guyana recently hosted its first ever Coconut Festival from October 21 – 23 at the Arthur Chung Convention Center. The Festival was developed as a joint Business/Tourism initiative as a unique combination of educational workshops, festivities, events, entertainment and awareness dedicated to the Coconut, as the world’s newly discovered “miracle fruit!”
The 2016 Coconut Festival was conceived, developed and hosted by Guyana’s Tourism Ministry as a direct response to the challenge of a local, regional and international increase in demand for coconut and coconut products which Guyana now faces. The event which was staged in collaboration with the Ministry of Agriculture attracted local stakeholder interest as well as overseas private sector participation.
Guyana enjoys a limited trade in coconuts with the region, primarily the Dominican Republic. Local entrepreneurs also export coconut water to other territories in the region, chiefly Trinidad and Tobago. Additionally, the country boasts a modest but growing coconut oil industry with product reportedly enjoying good sales in the Caribbean and beyond. With Guyana now seeking to take its coconut industry “to the next level.” The October Festival was aimed at facilitating the development of an agro tourism portfolio that would be equipped to play a focal role in advancing the regional programme for coconut development.
Guyana’s Director General of Tourism, Donald Sinclair had earlier described the 2016 Coconut Festival as “a national event with regional implications.” The relatively well attended three day Festival was comprised of presentations, seminars, exhibitions, demonstrations, fashions displays, games and entertainment, all related to promoting the coconut product.
Ontario Building 28 New Schools
Ontario is building 28 new schools, and expanding and renovating another 23 to support more than 21,000 students across the province as they learn and grow. This investment will ensure students are learning in high-quality, modern buildings that can better support their achievement and well-being.
Premier Kathleen Wynne made the announcement today at Courcelette Public School in Toronto, where funding will support an addition to the current building to accommodate 138 more students.
Ontario is making this investment in 51 schools in 36 communities to address demand in areas of high population growth, and to replace schools that are in poor condition.
Investing in new and better schools, and improved learning environments, is part of the government’s plan to create jobs, grow our economy and help people in their everyday lives.
In Caribbean Graphic’s previous Issue, we neglected to list the date for the Guyana Christian Charities Annual Bake Sale. An omission for which we were summarily admonished by the self appointed Errors & Omissions Commissioner who appears to be on perpetual duty. Our only wish would be for him to be as diligent in acknowledging the many good things we do, including our unsolicited provision of free publicity for all Guyanese-Canadian High School Alumni events, as he is in castigating our errors.
That having been said we do however, humbly apologize for the error and are pleased to advise all Readers that the Bake Sale will in fact be held on Sunday, October 30 at the Pickering Recreation Complex (1867 Valley Farm Road) commencing at 1:00 pm.
St Rose’s Alumni Pre Christmas Gala
The St. Rose’s Alumni Association’s (Toronto) Annual Pre-Christmas party will be held on Saturday, November 24, 2012 at Sts. Peter and Paul Banquet Hall, 231 Milner Avenue. Dance to the music of Fuh Fun Band and D.J. Jones. Come out with your family and friends for another wonderful event. Seats will be assigned this year for tables of ten persons. $55 (Dinner Inclusive) Tickets may be purchased from the Alumni’s Committee Members. For Contact information visit their website: http://www.strosesalumnitoronto.org
11 Contestants To Vie For Coveted Miss West Indian Canadian Pageant Crown.
On Sunday, Oct. 16, 2016 (from 12pm-7pm) at the Red Rose Convention Centre eleven beautiful, talented, intelligent, and cultured young women will parade as contestants for this year’s Miss West Indian Canadian Pageant. The Pageant’s format will be the same as in previous years.
The lovely Miss West Indian contestants will open the Pageant with a choreographed dance number they’ve been rehearsing every Sunday since September. Following the opening dance number they will then perform their talent, model their evening gowns. After these performances the top 6 will be chosen and allowed to give a short speech.
Before the crowning presentation, the host will announce Miss Popularity 2016 who competed on social media and then announce the 5th Runner-up, 4th Runner-up, 3rd Runner-up, 2nd Runner-up, 1st Runner-up, and finally the Miss West Indian Canadian 2016. It’s an exciting day with the 10th Annual Wi Canadian Expo Exhibitors, Wi Can Dance Competition, Fashion Shows by Satya Paul Canada, Little Miss West Indian Canadians and much more!
Haiti’s Hurricane Matthew Death Toll Rising!
Days after Hurricane Matthew lashed Haiti, leaving widespread devastation, the death toll rises. After being unable to establish communication with some of the hardest-hit towns, aid is finally beginning to arrive for the affected areas. Reuters reports that at least 877 people have been killed in the devastating hit by Hurricane Matthew, which clobbered the Caribbean country on Tuesday, October 4.
Aid officials have reported that almost 90 percent of some areas of Haiti’s south had been “completely destroyed,” according to BBC News.
Authorities were also especially concerned about the department of Grand-Anse on the northern tip of the peninsula, where they believe the death toll and damage is highest, the Associated Press reported. The death toll officials reported did not include Grand-Anse or other nearby areas.
Haitian officials said more than 28,000 houses have been damaged so far but assessments are only in the initial stages.
Reuters reports that many were killed by falling trees, flying debris and swollen rivers.
Jean-Michel Vigreux, country director for CARE Haiti, said 80 percent of the buildings were destroyed in the town of Jeremie, in Grand Anse. With a key bridge washed away and roads impassable, workers have struggled to reach the worst-hit areas, according to the Associated Press. Communication has also been limited with phone lines cut off in the Grande Anse department.
More than 60,000 people remain in shelters.
Ontario Government To Re-introduce Protecting Students Act
Ontario is protecting children and students by re-introducing legislation that would make the disciplinary process for the province’s educators more clear and transparent.
If passed, the Protecting Students Act and subsequent regulations would improve the Ontario College of Teachers’ investigation and disciplinary processes, reduce the potential for conflicts of interest and help protect children, students and teachers by:
• Ensuring a teacher’s certificate is automatically revoked if he or she has been found guilty of sexual abuse or acts relating to child pornography
• Requiring employers, including school boards, to inform the college when they have restricted a teacher’s duties or dismissed him or her for professional misconduct
• Allowing the college to share information with the school board or employer if the subject of a complaint poses an immediate risk to a student or child
• Requiring the college to publish all decisions from its discipline committee
• Improving timelines for the investigation and consideration of complaints.
The re-introduction of the Protecting Students Act is part of Ontario’s commitment to re-introduce all government bills that were before the legislature in spring 2016, so that debate on important issues may continue.
Christian Charities Hosts Annual Bake Sale
October heralds the advent of the Fall and pre Christmas Community events season. One of the Season’s most popular events is of course, the Guyana Christian Charity’s (GCC) Annual Bake Sale.
This year’s sale will take place at the customary venue, the spacious Pickering Recreation Complex, conveniently located at 1867 Valley Farm Road (Liverpool & Highway 7) just minutes of Hwy 401. The fun starts at 1:00 pm and goes until 4.
The Guyana Christian Charities Annual Bake Sale is now well over a decade old. As with all GCC events the proceeds are used directly to benefit various worthy causes in Guyana. Each year, friends and their families pitch in to assist in this worthy event, as dozens of volunteers donate their mouth-watering goods … and the result shows….the yearly event is extremely popular and successful. On the whole, this event is fun for the whole family. Not only can visitors sample a variety of sweet and savory treats, such as Guyana Black cake, local ice creams; a variety of Guyanese cuisine, but they can also sip cups of tea, mauby and ginger beer.
The administration of Guyana Christian Charities (Canada) Inc. is accomplished on a volunteer basis; there are no paid employees. Over 90% of the funds collected from GCC’s activities go to the organizations and/or hospitals it supports, special appeals when disasters occur, shipping expenses and related transportation for dispatches to Guyana – usually twice a year. Receiving Organizations are required to confirm receipt of the items shipped to them by signing and returning a copy of the Gift Certificates sent.
Click here to get the Sep. 28 2016 online edition. Click here for the Sep. 28 2016 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Guyanese-Canadian Kylie Bunbury Makes Her Pitch!
27-year-old Guyanese-Canadian actress Kylie Bunbury recently made her debut on Fox’s baseball drama Pitch as Ginny Baker, the first female pitcher in Major League Baseball. Recruited by the San Diego Padres, Ginny goes on a journey of self-discovery as she tries to balance her family’s expectations and her own professional aspirations amid clubhouse conflict.
Kylie is the daughter of Alex Bunbury, the former Guyanese-born Canadian national football player. Kylie’s arresting performance was why she was named one of ET’s fall TV breakout stars. Bunbury made a splash as one of the stars of ABC Family’s little-watched mystery saga, Twisted, but Pitch is being viewed as her coming-out party. Her Pitch co-stars are Mark Consuelos and Mark-Paul Gosselaar. The latter called Bunbury “a special, special woman.” “You watch her on screen and she just melts you,” he marveled.
G50 Awards Gala Honour For Peter Pitamber!
Brampton’s Calypso Hut owner Peter Pitamber, who along with his wife Seeta and son Terry, were tragically killed in a carbon-monoxide poisoning incident two years ago, will be honoured at the October 1 Canada-Guyana 50th Independence Awards Gala. Pitamber’s Business Excellence Award will be one of five to be presented posthumously at the Gala. Doctors Rudy Grant and Percy Anderson (Education), Norman Sue (Business) and Joan DeBarros (Community Service) will also honoured for outstanding contributions they each made in their respective fields.
Mrs Ina Sealey, 100 Years Of Love And Laughter!
36, 525 days, 876,600 hours, 52,596 minutes, 8 amazing children, 17 loving grandchildren, 27 beautiful great grandchildren, 5 great, great grandchildren, one blessed family, All Because of You: Mrs Ina Sealey! Those were the contents of a scroll presented to each of the family and friends guests who attended the September 24 celebration of Ina Sealey’s achievement of her 100 birthday milestone a few days before.
According to her birth certificate, Ina Sealey was born in Guyana on September 21, 1916, slap bang in the middle of World War I. Now one hundred years later she’s still alive and fit enough to attend the celebrations that her loving family, led by her children, hosted for her at the family’s Scarborough, Ontario home.
There were well over one hundred guests in attendance at Mrs Sealey’s 100 Birthday celebration, for which the family home’s backyard had been converted to a highly attractive, white linen covered tables and chair decked party venue. Complete with a food station, open bar and DJ booth. There was also a framed photo of Mrs Sealey on each of the tables as well as strategically hung pictorial collages of her activities over the past 100 years.
Fuh Fun Billed For St Rose’s Annual Pre-Christmas Dinner Dance.
As difficult as it may be to either believe or accept, it’s already that time when thoughts turn to end of year Christmas parties. Along those lines, the St Rose’s Alumni Association’s (Toronto) Pre-Christmas Dinner & Dance is definitely one of the Guyanese-Canadian Community’s most enjoyable and successful events.
This year’s Dinner-Dance will again be held at its customary venue, Scarborough’s attractive Sts. Peter & Paul Banquet Hall (231 Milner Avenue, off Markham Rd. N of Hwy 410). Live music will be provided by the ever exciting Fuh Fun, accompanied by DJ Spinz.
The delicious dinner will be served at 7:30 sharp. The $55/per person tickets, can be purchased from any of the Association’s Executive Members. The event is usually sold out.
Click here to get the July 27 2016 online edition. Click here for the July 27 2016 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Connector Crowned Calypso Monarch
“Connector” (Joel Davis) is Toronto’s New 2016 Calypso Monarch! He was the most popular choice with his winning composition entitled “The Dress” from a field of fourteen contestants on July 25 at the Latvian Canadian Cultural Centre, 4 Credit Union Drive in East York.
The full results were as follows:
1.Connector (Joel Davis) 2.Macomere Fifi (Tara Woods) 3. De Carra (Leslie Carrabon)
4. Tie – Dennis James & Mr Wonderful (Steve Clarke)6. Lady Scorpio (Norma Coar)
7. Antz (Wendell Ramdeen)8. Web (Hamilton Alexander)9. King Cosmos (Henry Gomez)10. Brown Sugar (Colleen Trotman)11. Scotty (Hamilton Scott)12. Kenny C (Kennedy Caliste)13. Loveman Kent (Kent Merchant) and 14. Dynasty (Alfred Caton)
Special Awards were also presented in the following categories:
Best Lyrics – Macomere Fifi “Soca Quest”; Best Melody – Connector “The Dress”; Best Presentation- Kenny C “Too Much Poverty”; Most Original Calypso-Connector “The Dress”; Best Rendition-Kenny C “Too Much Poverty”; Best Composition on a Local Topic-Web “More Funding for Carnival”; Most Humourous-Connector-“The Dress”; Best Arrangement-Connector-“The Dress”; The Peoples Choice – Connector-“The Dress”
Jagdeo Tells Queens Crowd “There’s An Assault On Guyanese Of Indian Origins. Calls For Community Spirt To Defend “Our People!”
Opposition Leader and Former President Bharrat Jagdeo, attempted to drum up support for his party during a Guyana family fun day event in Queens, New York over the July 20 weekend. During a short speech at the open air event, Mr. Jagdeo told the crowd of mostly Indo-Guyanese migrants, that there is currently an assault on Guyanese of Indian origin in Guyana and there is also an assault on Guyanese who support the PPP.
Guyana Festival’s 25th Anniversary.
The Guyana Festival, another of the planned events in Toronto to mark Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary was held at Downsview Park on Sunday, July 17, 2016. Guyanese in the Greater Toronto Area came out in numbers to sample their native cuisine, witness cultural performances, participate in and watch a food eating competition and purchase Guyanese made products from trade show booths.
Festival organizers said that given the challenges in finding a suitable venue and having to make last minute changes they were encouraged with the number of people who attended.
During the day they said close to 3000 people passed through the venue and they vowed that next year will be an even better Guyana Festival.
Lead Festival Organizers Victor Yacob and Malcolm Cho Kee said they’d like to thank the volunteers, business owners, sponsors, trade show participants and those who attended for their support and looked forward for their input in future Guyana Festival events.
This year the Guyana Festival marked 25 years since it began as an outdoor celebration to mark Guyana’s Independence Day.
Click here to get the July 13 2016 online edition. Click here for the July 13 2016 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Connector Wins People’s Choice Calypso Award
Connector (Joel Davis) brought the house down,at the Professionals Tent July 10 final night, and won the People’s Choice Award while he was it. Connector got into a dress and wig and performed a song as Macomere Cee Cee. Of course he was channeling Canada’s most successful Calypso singer, Macomere FiFi (Tara Woods).
Song was about how, as a male Calypso singer, the only way he can win this year’s Monarch Crown is if he put on a dress and sings like FiFi. Witty. Catchy. Joel was a terrific cross-dresser who had Fifi’s moves and singing style down cold! FiFi (Tara) agreed and came out to dance and hug Joel at the end of the song. Standing O’s are rare at the Professional’s tent, but, Joel connected with the audience and got one!!!
Birdie Celebrates 81st Birthday
Dr Slinger Francisco, the legendary Mighty Sparrow, or as he is fondly known “Birdie”, a West Indian calypso icon, celebrated his 81st birthday on Saturday, July 9. Sparrow was born in the fishing village of Grand Roy, Grenada, on July 9, 1935. He moved to Trinidad with his mother, his father having relocated there in 1937, and grew up in Port of Spain.
His musical accomplishments, particular in calypso, have ensured that the Mighty Sparrow will continue to have a long lasting legacy among fans of all ages. He has won multiple awards, many other significant university citations from governments and organizations too numerous to mention. He has achieved numerous recognitions and worldwide fame.
His songs such as Jean and Dinah, May May, Sa Sa Yea, Unity, Melda O, Jail, Pay as You Earn ‘PAYE’, Age is Just a Number, Drunk and Disorderly, Wanted Dead or Alive, Human Rights, Sexy Marajhin, Capitalism Gone Mad, The Lizard, The More the Merrier, and countless others, are just some of his best known and best praised songs. His songs have put him in the spotlight and earned him worldwide recognition. He is still a prolific performer today, and shows no sign of stopping.
Click here to get the June 29 2016 online edition. Click here for the June 29 2016 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Austin Clarke Passes!
Austin Clarke died on Sunday, June 26, at the age of 81, CBC Books has confirmed.
Clarke was born in St. James, Barbados, on July 26, 1934. He moved to Canada in 1955 to attend the University of Toronto, but left to pursue a career in broadcasting. He became a leader in the North American civil rights movement before publishing his first novel, The Survivors of the Crossing, in 1964.
He went on to write more than two dozen books in various genres, including novels, nonfiction and poetry. His most recent work is a memoir, ‘Membering, which was published last year.
“Writing has been a mainstay and the most important aspect of my life,” Clarke said to CBC Books in 2015. “It shall continue this way until I die.”
Clarke is best known for his novel The Polished Hoe, which won the Scotiabank Giller Prize in 2002. The Polished Hoe is the story of Mary-Matilda, an elderly woman who confesses to a long-ago murder of a plantation owner, sharing her story over the course of a single night to a police officer. In addition to the Giller, the novel also won the 2003 Commonwealth Writers’ Prize for Best Book Overall and the 2003 Trillium Book Award.
Brexit A Threat To The Caribbean Warns Sir Hilary Beckles
Vice-Chancellor of the University of the West Indies (UWI) Sir Hilary Beckles has warned the region to brace for the impact of the United Kingdom’s (UK) break with the European Union (EU), as he predicted that every aspect of life in the Caribbean will be negatively affected.
The Brexit (British exit) vote last Thursday has already caused ripples across the world, with the value of the pound falling and stock markets dipping among the immediate effects.
And Sir Hilary says the region’s fragile economic recovery is now under threat and Britain’s exit should trigger immediate strategic regional reactions, even before Heads of Government meet in Guyana for their July 4 to 6 Summit.
“The predictable, highly individualistic action poses both a short-term as well as a long-term threat to the performance of CARICOM economies,” he said in a June 28 statement.
More Provincial Government Support For Autism!
Ontario is providing more support for children and youth with autism, including an accelerated implementation of the new Ontario Autism Program. The new program will provide all children, regardless of age, with more flexible services at a level of intensity that meets each child’s individual needs, significantly reduce wait times for service, and increase the number of treatment spaces available to serve more children and accommodate the rising prevalence in autism diagnoses.
Church Service To Celebrate Guyana’s 50th!
Guyanese-Canadians, along with their friends and family members are expected turn out in droves for the Sunday July 3 Church Service to commemorate Guyana’s 50th Anniversary of Independence. As the only English speaking country on South America’s vast continent, Guyana joined the ranks of Independent nations on May 26, 1966.
The Guyana-Canadian Celebrate 50 Independence Anniversary Church Service will be held at Scarborough’s Church of the Nativity, 1010 Sewells Rd, on Sunday 3rd July, commencing at 10 am. As one of Toronto’s most popular religious citadels, the Scarborough Church of Nativity has been hosting Guyana Independence Anniversary Services for a number of years.
A Social Meet & Greet Reception will held after church services in the Church hall. All are invited to attend.
Click here to get the June 8 2016 online edition. Click here for the June 8 2016 pdf version, best for offline reading.
St Lucia Elections: Chastanet In, Anthony Out!
Economist Allan Chastanet led his United Workers Party (UWP) to a resounding victory in St Luica’s June 6 General Election and immediately signalled his intention to turn around an ailing economy, deal with a ballooning debt while at the same time keeping citizens at the heart of the new socio-economic plans for St Lucia.
“I want to say a big thank you to the people of St Lucia…let them know we are not going to let them down,” Chastanet said at his first news conference after the Electoral Department preliminary figures showed that the UWP had won 11 of the 17 seats contested in the general election.
“Thank you for the support in energising us,” he added.
Jamaican Offered Over J$11 billion For Cancer Research Patent!
Dr. Lawrence Williams, a research consultant with the Scientific Research Council is certainly one Jamaican who has achieved great things and his hard work and dedication certainly make him worthy of recognition and emulation.
Williams obtained his Bachelor of Science degree in 1987, after completing undergraduate studies at the University of the West Indies (UWI) with a major in Zoology and a minor in Chemistry.
He has been studying a compound from the Guinea Hen Weed (scientific name: Petiveria alliacea) for several years which has now reached the patent stage.
So promising is his breakthrough that he has already been offered over $11 billion (US$100 million) for a patent relating to his cancer research.
The offer was however declined because its value is estimated to be greater than what was offered.
Dr. Williams and a Jamaican partner residing in the United States currently hold that patent and reportedly received the impressive offer from a major drug company located in the United States.
Diaspora Canadians Donate Beds To Guyanese Orphanage
To celebrate Guyana’s Golden Jubilee the Guyanese Canadians – GT 50 group galvanised over 300 of their families, friends, co-workers and neighbours, in Canada, to donate 35 new beds to the St. Ann’s Orphanage in Thomas Street, Georgetown. The girls and their caregivers were presented with this generous gift by five representatives of the group from Canada.
Minister within the Ministry of Education, Nicolette Henry attended the presentation ceremony. She reinforced her commitment to inspiring the youth of Guyana.
While reflecting on the theme on the Golden Jubilee of Independence, Minister Henry highlighted the sense of national pride at this historic time especially at the Flag Raising. “This is the legacy of the celebrations,” she said.
The Minister also encouraged the children at the orphanage to work hard, since they can achieve great things despite their current situation.
Aside from celebrating Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary, Guyanese Canadians – GT 50 group spokesperson, Sheryl Barry explained that the trip is also aimed at promoting the group’s philanthropic spirit in Guyana.
The group planned a series of events in Guyana, all geared towards fostering a closer relationship between the Guyanese Canadian Diaspora and those at home
The Calypso Monarch Competition “KAISO 365” is back!
Canada’s top calypso final is back with a new format. The 2016 Calypso Monarch Competition will see, for the first time ever, fifteen(15) contestants being judged on one(1) song – a change from the traditional two songs (from nine(9) singers – 8 selected finalists plus the Reigning Monarch). The move is one that would make for a shorter show and give greater exposure to more artistes thus providing greater variety, excitement and entertainment for the audience.
This year’s competition is presented by the Organization of Calypso Performing Artistes (OCPA) with support from the Toronto Caribbean Carnival and will be held on Sunday July 24th 2016 at 5.00p.m at the Latvian Canadian Cultural Centre, 4 Credit Union Drive in East York.
Pleasure In Paradise!
Designed by: Daryl Cox, internationally renowned carnival costume designer, known for his fabulous designs for carnivals around the world.The Section is lead by two women with a passion for carnival and mas, Brigita Abraham and Camille Sirkissoon who are committed to making your Toronto Caribbean Carnival experience one to remember.
Body wear in this beautiful costume features a one of a kind fabric; a pink/orange gradient which shimmers with it’s silver glitter sparkle. This lovely colour combination will certainly bring a glow to all skintones.
The Paradise backline costume ($240) includes a small feathered collar to add flare to even the smallest budget.
The Frontline Headpiece or Frontline Collar options ($395) will be a show stopper as the sun radiates off of the pink and orange plumes.
The Ultra Frontline Package is a stunner with it’s large feathered backpack and headpiece. It’s jeweled monokini and unique beaded chain bracelets will glimmer along the Lakeshore as we sway to the sweet soca music. The Ultra package has notable value as it includes everything pictured with the addition of complimentary boots from carnivalkicks.com, and a purse to keep your cash and lipstick.
Come experience Paradise’s pleasure as they chip along the Lakeshore in their vibrant costumes!
Fifty years ago on May 26, 1966 the Golden Arrowhead, Guyana’s national flag, was hoisted and unfurled for the first time ever to celebrate the country’s birth as an independent nation. The Golden Arrowhead’s May 26, 2016 hoisting, at Toronto’s City Hall, will kick start the Guyanese-Canadian Community’s celebration of their homeland’s Golden Jubilee!
The May 26, 2016 midday flag raising ceremony will be the first of a series of events that the Guyana 50th Independence Anniversary (Canada) Inc., in conjunction with the Guyana Toronto Consulate, will be staging to commemorate Guyana’s 50 years of Independence. Immediately after the flag raising there will be a short Reception at City Hall.
In addition to the Flag Raising, celebratory Soccer and Cricket Tournaments will also take place on July 2 at Littles Park, Sewell’s Road, Scarborough. The annual, immensely popular, Guyana Festival will be held on July 3 at the CNE Bandstand, 100 Princes’ Blvd, Exhibition Place.
York Region Hosts 5th Annual Caribbean & South Asian
The Ranji Singh Foundation (RSF) is thrilled to announce the 5th Annual Caribbean & South Asian Showcase (CASAS), which includes a two-day festival in Newmarket and a community day of cricket workshops and music in East Gwillimbury. On May 21, local MPP Chris Ballard met with members of RSF to congratulate them on the two grants it has recently received from Ontario Trillium Foundation (OTF) to help with the two projects. When combined, funds from the two grants total $469,500.
Additionally, the grant RSF received for its Cricket in Schools initiative, will help youth in York Region develop stronger social skills and learn a popular sport. RSF gratefully acknowledges its OTF grant of $440,000 over three years for the delivery of CASAS to strengthen the local communities through celeb rations of cultural diversity, and enriching peoples lives through arts, culture and heritage. In a separate funded project, RSF is currently piloting cricket in three schools in northern York Region to support the positive development of children and youth, and for them to develop strong physical, emotional and social skills again thanks to an OTF grant of $29,500 over 12 months.
In June, the CASAS Cricket & Community Day will engage local youths in interactive cricket workshops conducted in partnership with York Regional Police. Music and other activities will be included off-field to engage families. Bring a picnic basket and a chair, and enjoy the day.
Admission is free.
CASAS Cricket & Community Day will take place on Sunday, June 26th from 12:00 p.m. – 6:00p.m. at Harvest Hills Park, 145 Harvest Hills Blvd, East Gwillimbury.
De Karibbean King: A Guyanese Owned Eatery Restaurant & Bakery!
Nestled in a corner spot of the elevated strip mall, at the southeast side of the Weston Rd & Finch intersection, is De Karibbean King’s Eatery Restaurant, Hot & Fresh Guyana Bakery. Enter its unpretentious interior and you will find Baker King Raj Ramrattan and his lovely wife Sharon proudly presiding within their modestly decorated establishment.
There aren’t too many places in Toronto where you can go and enjoy restaurant style cooked meals of curry goat, jerk chicken with rice and peas, chow mein, fried rice or any of the other popular Caribbean dishes, while simultaneously having access to freshly baked bread and pastries! These are indeed De Karibbean King’s rather unique offerings.
FuhFun Still Rocking Community Events!
The Guyana Christian Charities Association hosted its Annual Spring Dance on Saturday, May 21, 2016. As usual, the ever popular event was well attended by hundreds of party lovers who have over the years become accustomed to the Charity’s superbly hosted, well organized events!
From all reports satisfaction was of the highest this year as the Dance was rocked by superlative live music sets from FuhFun. Still reigning as the Canadian Caribbean Community’s most exciting and dynamic live music band, FuhFun seemingly reinforced that very reputation with some energy charged sets that kept the dance floor full throughout the evening.
The Christian Charities Annual Spring Dance is just one of the many Community events FuhFun graces throughout the year with its immensely enjoyable multi genre blend of live music. Whether it be soca, reggae, rhythm & blues, soul or even soft rock, the five member FuhFun comprised of Wayne Dalmada (guitar, vocals) Rick DaSilva (drums, vocals), George DeSilva (lead vocals), Brian Irwin (percussions) and its lone female member Ingrid Veerasammy (keyboards, vocals) invariably sounds good.
During the course of the year FuhFun also hosts its own events, including its Annual Caribana Weekend Jam. This year’s Jam will be held on Sunday, August 31.
Caribbean Students To Benefit From Rihanna’s New Scholarship Programme
Barbadian-born Grammy-winning singer Rihanna has announced a global scholarship programme that would fund education for students from seven countries, including her home country and four other Caribbean nations, in the United States.
The college scholarship programme, launched through her Clara Lionel Foundation (CLF), would provide up to US$50,000 in scholarships for successful applications from Barbados, Brazil, Cuba, Haiti, Guyana, Jamaica, or the US who have already been accepted into a bachelor’s degree program at an accredited four-year college or university in the US for the 2016-2017 year.
Lennox Shaun Caleb : El Dorado Rum’s Master Distiller!
Lennox Shaun Caleb comes to the job of Master Distiller for Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL) after a decade-long association with the Company. Having attended Princeton University as a Cadet of DDL, Shaun graduated in 2007 with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering with Honours. Thereupon, he applied his in-depth knowledge and practical exposure to distillation to understudy then-Master Distiller, George Robinson, who had more than four decades of stellar distilling experience.
In fact, Shaun returned to the Distillery at a critical juncture when two new Distillation Stills were being designed and built: a fully-integrated, multi-pressure, five-column Still, and a two-column Coffey-type Still. Then the Engineer/Project Manager, he was integrally involved in the design and engineering, installation and commissioning of the Stills. Thus, he harmoniously bridges the steep traditions and craft of the Demerara Heritage Stills, with the modernity of the technologically-advanced new Stills – none sacrificing the integrity and authenticity of the other.
Lovely Ladies Hanging High!
Guyana’s recently appointed High Commissioner to Canada, Her Excellency Clarissa Sabita Riehl received a rousing welcome from members of Toronto’s Guyanese Canadian Community at a May 7th Reception, hosted by Guyana’s current Toronto Consul General Sattie Sawh. The Reception was held at the Richmond Hill Sheraton Parkway North Hotel.
Well over one hundred esteemed members of the Guyanese Canadian community were in attendance at the by special invitation only Welcome Reception, which was also graced by several members of the Toronto Caribbean Diplomatic Corps. These included St Lucia’s High Commissioner to Canada as well as the respective Consul Generals from Antigua, Barbados, Grenada and Trinidad & Tobago.
Caribbean Graphic’s Advertising Manager, Lynette Balram was among those who were photographed with High Commissioner Riehl. A request which obviously met with the High Comissioner’s “thumbs up” approval.
Nirvana Carnival Presents Serenity For Island Vybz’s 2016 Genese!
Section Leader Tamieka Persad has made a bold statement with her Serenity Section in Island Vyubz’s 2016 Toronto Caribbean Carnival presentation Genese. Serenity’s outstandingly appealing costumes includes a $240 priced Backline, complete with tiara & the feathered shoulder collar!
Additional Options: Cage/Wire Bra, Spider Panty, Large Head Piece, Monokini, boa, shorts, whole piece, high waist panty and more!
This gorgeous costume was created for the free spirited Masquerader with little inhibitions and seeking lots of fun! Easy to wear, with trendy body chains, suede and bead trim and gold feather accents.
Tamieka has invited her masqueraders to “wear the costume as is or make it your own by selecting any of the available add-ons.” Be a part of Toronto Carnival’s Ultimate Experience!
April 27 2016 Edition highlights
Blue Bliss From Tribal Knights
Blue Bliss’ Raesha Sirois shone brightly as the star of Tribal Knights’ April 18 Official Launch of its 2016 Toronto Caribbean Carnival Presentation.: Tribal 10! The Launch was held at the Warehouse (55 Nugget), and was described by photographer Steven Weir as “600 people in a room built for 599! Lots of energy, fun and surprises!”
Big Caribbean Earthquake Due Says Seismologist
With two recent massive earthquakes in Ecuador and Japan, Trinidad-based seismologist Dr. Joan Latchman, has warned that the Caribbean should prepare for a ‘big one’.
In an interview with the Trinidad Express, Latchman said the Eastern Caribbean has a holding pattern of quakes from magnitude 7 to 7.9, every 20 to 30 years, noting that this pattern has stayed true.
She added that the Eastern Caribbean has not seen a large earthquake since 1843 and people should be prepared for its occurrence.
Saints CaribJam Beckons
Approximately 300 patrons enjoyed a most memorable evening at the very successful St. Stanislaus College Alumni Association Toronto (SSCAAT) Annual Spring Dance held on Saturday 16th April, 2016 at West Rouge Community Centre. For $45/person all inclusive (dinner and beverages), and a promise of a fantastic evening, no one could resist this deal and tickets were sold out at least 3 weeks prior to the event.
Next up is the SSCAAT’s annual CARIBJAM dance, which kicks off the “Caribana” weekend. This year’s dance will be held at the Pickering Recreation Centre on Friday 29th July, 2016 at 8PM jamming to the sounds of New York’s finest Angel’s Caribbean Band and DJ Get Busy. Tickets are $30/person (beverage and food for sale) and can be purchased from any member of the executive or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Island Vybz Promises Premium Carnival Experience!
Is Toronto ready for a Premium Carnival Experience? Bandleader Godfrey Wickham and his Island Vybz Crew certainly think so. Islandvybz_mas is a new band for Toronto Carnival 2016 that has been created to serve the needs of Toronto’s masqueraders.
“You want to slay the lakeshore in your beautiful costume? Sure, everyone does. Choose one of our sections and we’ll make sure of it. But playing mas in Toronto is about more than the costume.
Do you want more security? We got you. You want a mobile washroom in your band so you don’t have to hop the fences to go do your business? We’ll take care of it. You want the best Djs on the road? But of course. You want something else to eat other than pelau at 9am? As you wish. Tell you what, we’ll throw in both breakfast and lunch for you along with unlimited beverages all day long. Do you want to be experience Toronto Carnival in a way you’ve never experienced it before?
So do we.
Hi. We’re Island Vybz and we’ve come to change things up a bit!”
Toronto mas lovers are invited to witness the Genesis of a new standard of mas in Toronto on April 29 as Island Vybz launches its 2016 theme GENESE: A New Beginning at the Warehouse Event Venue in Downsview Park 35 Carl Hall Road Unit 2.
Early bird tickets are available from ticketgateway.com and physical tickets are available from Island Vybz Mas committee members and storefront ticket outlets across the GTA.
Don’t miss this launch. The costumes and all inclusive VIP will blow you away!
Click here to get the Apr. 13 2016 online edition. Click here for the Apr. 13 2016 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Former Canadian High Commissioner Suing Guyana’s Govt!
Guyana’s former High Commissioner to Canada, Harry Narine Nawbatt, has brought a lawsuit against the Government for breaching the contractual agreement made on his appointment to the ambassadorial position to Canada. He is claiming damages in excess of $49 million for wrongful dismissal.
The damages include excess of $25M for breach of contract of employment and special damages $24.3M. The Attorney General was named as a Defendant in the matter. Nawbatt’s lawyers include Anil Nandlall, Euclin Gomes, Sase Gunraj, Manoj Narayan and Sasha Mahadeo.
According to recently filed court documents, Nawbatt entered a contract of employment February 10, 2015 with the former Government. The former Ambassador was engaged to perform the duties and functions of High Commissioner of the Republic of Guyana to Canada effective from February 10, 2015 to the February 9 2016. But Nawbatt‘s contract was terminated by August, 2015 resulting in what he claims are the estimated amounts in losses and damages.
The $500,000 Sip!
Guyana’s President, David Granger, and other officials sample Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL) 50-year-old El Dorado rum at the April 11 launch of the alcoholic beverage which is a special edition to commemorate Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary next month. Each bottle, which is adorned with a gold pendant, is being sold at a cost of $500,000 plus VAT. Only 600 bottles have been produced. In photo, from right: President Granger, DDL Chairman Komal Samaroo, Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, DDL founder Yesu Persaud and Master Distiller Shaun Caleb sample the rum at DDL’s location at Diamond, East Bank Demerara. (Photo by Keno George)
Ontario Government Announces Youth Opportunities Fund Projects
The Ontario Government has identified the 31 grassroots projects that will receive $7.7 million this year from Ontario’s Youth Opportunities Fund to help at-risk youth succeed.
Tracy MacCharles, Minister of Children and Youth Services, visited LAB B in Brampton on April 11 to highlight the 31 selected projects. LAB B, Brampton’s first co-working space, home to creative freelancers and entrepreneurs, is receiving $300,000 over 36 months to create a Creative Economy Co-op program that will help youth in Peel Region gain entrepreneurial skills through mentorship.
Genèse: A New 2016 Beginning For Island Vybz
Island Vybz Promotions has chosen to embark on a new journey this year, having been given the opportunity to participate as a band in the 2016 Toronto Caribbean Carnival. Island Vybz Mas, will feature the same innovative designs and quality service that Island Vybz Promotions has provided to other bands in the past, but with a difference. Island Vybz Mas’ plans are to offer masqueraders a premium carnival experience with a focus on exceptional service, costume quality and excellent amenities both on and off the road including uniformed security, mobile washrooms, world class deejays, seamless electronic registration and costume pickup, superior costume quality and innovative designs as well as unparalleled masquerader service!
Click here to get the Mar. 23 2016 online edition. Click here for the Mar. 23 2016 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Guyanese Canadian Donates Bed Frames To Guyana Prisons!
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Canadian Surplus Guyana Inc. Pramchand Punwasi has decided to donate 60 bed frames to the Guyana Prison Service (GPS). The businessman is scheduled to formally donate the bed frames, along with 500 cases of hospital disposable stretcher sheets, in April.
President of the Guyana-Canada Professional and Business Corporation and Ministerial Advisor on Diaspora Affairs, Tameshwar Lilmohan, facilitated the arrangement. The Advisor informed the Government Information Agency that others have expressed interest in donating items as well.
Minister of Public Security, Khemraj Ramjattan has welcomed the assistance, as the Government moves to reform the local prison system and infrastructure. He said all stakeholders’ efforts to assist are welcome.
Last Lap Lime Launches Attendees Survey
As part of its 2016 planning the Last Lap Lime has launched a Survey for its attendees. According to its architect, Gillian Williams, the Survey is intended to provide feedback to this Lime’s Planning Committee with the objective of instituting changes that will enhance attendees experience.
“We have started planning for LLL 2016 and are interested in hearing from you. Do you have suggestions for us? What changes would you like to see? Please click this link to complete the survey”.
Jubilee Celebration Plans Announced
GUYANA’S Consul-General in Toronto, Sattie Sawh, and the 50th Independence Anniversary Celebration Committee have announced elaborate plans to celebrate Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary in Canada and are also endeavouring to have Guyana’s president David Granger and other top government officials attend.
According to the organisers, “we have scheduled a number of exciting events during the year to mark the occasion and we look forward for the support of all Guyanese in Canada to join in celebrating this historic milestone.” The celebration will feature a collection of commemorative events, coordinated by the committee and culminates with a grand jubilee awards and cultural show, scheduled for October/November at the St Lawrence Centre of Arts. Sawh pointed out that several notable Guyanese, including some posthumously, will be honoured at the grand occasion.
Clarissa Riehl Appointed Guyana’s High Commissioner To Canada
Former Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly under the People’s National Congress (PNC), Shadow Foreign Affairs Minister and Attorney Clarissa Riehl has been appointed Guyana’s High Commissioner to Canada. She replaces PPP/C member Harry Narine Nawbatt.
Ms Riehl’s appointment was among six announced by Guyana’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday, February 4, 10 months after the APNU+AFC coalition government took office. The others announced were for diplomatic appointments to the United Kingdom, China, Belgium, Cuba and Suriname.
Holness Pledges Efficient Government
Jamaica’s recently re-elected Prime Minister Andrew Holness has recommitted his newly installed Government to a policy of efficiency and frugality in public administration following the swearing in of his 18-member Cabinet and warned them that corruption will not be tolerated.
Ann Juman: Not Just Another Real Estate Agent!
In an industry that’s long since become overcrowded to the point of saturation with Agents just out to make an easy dollar, Ann Juman “stands out from the crowd!” Now in her tenth year as a Real Estate practitioner, Juman’s dedication to her task is evidenced by the fact that she’s only ever worked for two firms. That’s quite unlike the myriads of others who typically jump from one Agency to another.
Gold Companies Host Guyana Night
There was a high level of optimism on March 6 in a full room of investors as senior executives of three Canadian gold mining companies in Guyana talked about their production, progress and the vast mining potential in Guyana.
They were meeting at a reception themed ‘Guyana Night‘at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) International Convention, Trade Show and Investors Exchange in Toronto.
Cozier Suing WICB Boss
Tony Cozier, the voice of Caribbean cricket, is suing president of the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB), Whycliffe “Dave”Cameron for defamation.
Cozier, an icon of broadcast cricket commentary for more than 50 years, is headed to court and seeking damages for defamation over words used by Cameron last May 22 during a meeting at the Cave Hill Campus of the University of the West Indies.
Guyana’s Education Minister Coming For 50th Independence Anniversary Celebration Launch
Guyana’s Minister in the Ministry of Education and Co-Chairman of the National Commemorative Commission Nicolette Henry will join Guyana’s Consul General and Chair of the 50th Independence Anniversary (Canada) Committee Sattie Sawh at a media event to announce plans for Guyana’s Golden Jubilee celebrations in Toronto. The Media Event will be held on Saturday, February 27, 2016 at the Guyana Consulate (505 Consumers Rd, North York) commencing at 11:30 am.
During the Event, Media representatives will be briefed on the Toronto Planning Committee’s plans for Canada’s celebration of Guyana’s May 26, 2016 5oth Independence Anniversary. Minister Henry will also update attendees on plans for the celebrations in Guyana.
Barbados Voted Caribbean Best Destination.
Barbados has been voted Caribbean Best Destination 2016 in recognition of outstanding performance and partnership by Expedia, the largest retailer of travel products in the Caribbean. The award, which was presented during the Caribbean Travel Marketplace in The Bahamas, was a continuation of Barbados’ recent winning streak and marked the seventh international award Barbados has received over the past year.
The island was also dubbed Best Destination by Caribbean Journal, and ranked third among the islands of the Caribbean by TripAdvisor in 2015.
Sa Fire’s Awesome Ambiance Beckons All!
Finally, within Scarborough’s convenient city limits, there’s now a Caribbean owned restaurant of which we can all be proud. For years, the more mature members of our Canadian West Indian Community have been clamoring for a restaurant offering delicious Caribbean cuisine in an attractive ambiance.
The type of place where those of us who yearn to do so can unashamedly take any of our associates from a different culture and proudly share with them our love for well cooked Caribbean food.
Outside of Whitby’s Chatterpauls nowhere east of Yonge Street has there yet been any such establishment. Others have pretended to such heights only to fall woefully short.
Enter Sa Fire, a Guyanese-Canadian husband (Naz) and wife (Narissa) owned restaurant. Since its September 25 last opening Sa Fire has been offering delicious Caribbean cuisine in a most wonderful and refreshingly attractive ambiance.
“Our Community has lost a giant!” That was the sad sentiment commonly expressed by many as word of the Selwyn Joseph’s untimely passing filtered through Canada’s Caribbean community. Joseph, who was at the time of his passing the immediate Past President of Tringo, the Trinidadian-Canadian Social group, succumbed on February 5 after a months long battle with cancer. He was seventy-four.
Twilight Restaurant: Good Food In A Spacious Atmosphere!
If you are looking to enjoy some good Guyanese-Caribbean cuisine in a spaciously comfortable atmosphere Scarborough’s Twilight Restaurant (55 Nugget Avenue) may just be the place for you. Conveniently located on Nugget Avenue, just off of McCowan Rd, north of Hwy 401, Twilight is large enough to often accommodate live bands on stage for its increasingly popular special weekends, without in any way inconveniencing its diners.
As popular as its weekend entertainment may be, it’s the food that attracts Twilight’s ever increasing number of regular diners. With a “ GT Chinee” fully in charge of its expansive kitchen, Twilight boasts Guyanese-Caribbean Cuisine menu offerings that can rival any others in the GTA.
Let’s Do Lunch!
The Alliance of Guyanese Canadian Organizations will be hosting its Annual Republic/Mashramani Luncheon on February, 21 2016 at the Elite Banquet Hall (1850 Albion Rd, Rexdale. This year’s Luncheon is being held as part of the Canadian-Guyanese Community’s celebration of Guyana’s May 26, 2016 50th Anniversary of Independence.
Proceeds from the Luncheon will be in aid of the Alliance’s Community Centre Building Fund. Lunch will be served from 1:30 – 3:00 pm. Admission in $40 per Adult and $25 for Kids under 14.
Guyana’s 50th Independence Anniversary Planning Committee Hosts Pre-Independence Dance.
The Planning Committee for Canada’s celebration of Guyana’s May 26, 2016 5oth Independence Anniversary will be hosting a Pre-Independence Dance on Saturday, February 27 at the Armenian Community Centre (45 Hallcrown Place, Toronto). The Dance, which gets under way at 7:30 pm and runs until 2:00 am, will feature music by DJ Jones, De Original Terry and the GT2 Band.
There will also be lots of food on sale and a Cash Bar. Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the Door.
T20 Windies Crisis Looms
West Indies cricket is facing the prospect of a player strike on the eve of the World Twenty20 after the 15-man squad appeared collectively to reject the contracts on offer from the WICB.
Darren Sammy, captain of the West Indies T20 side, has written to the board stating the players “can’t accept” what they perceive as “huge financial reductions” in the terms compared to previous global tournaments which, he says, amounts to an 80 percent cut.
Sammy also stated that 14 of the 15-man squad are “not part of WIPA” (the West Indies Players Association) and therefore had not given the organisation the authority to negotiate on their behalf.
One of the Caribbean’s most popular mobile networks, Digicel, is offering to pay all of your bills for a whole year. Digicel, in its continued effort to keeping families connected in the diaspora, has launched its latest best value promotion this tax season called, Bills on Us.
The promotion is simple – when customers in the USA, UK or Canada send top up to family and friends in the Caribbean, they get a chance to have their bills and that of the receiver paid for one full year.
Two lucky winners each week, starting January 25, 2016 to March 20, 2016 will have their bills paid for the year, whether it’s their credit card bill, their electricity bill or their cable bill valued at up to US$3,000 for the sender.
Caribbean Fish Stocks Declining
A major new study has revealed that the global seafood catch is much larger and declining much faster than previously known.
The study, by the University of British Columbia near Vancouver, reconstructed the global catch between 1950 and 2010 and found that it was 30 per cent higher than what countries have been reporting to the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Rome since 1950. In the Caribbean islands, the catch was more than twice as large as previously reported and declining at a rate 60 per cent faster than the official rate, the Canadian study found.
Overall, the study found that Caribbean islands catch soared from 230,000 tons in 1950 to 830,000 in 2004 before crashing to 470,000 in 2010.
Celebrating Guyana’s 50th
The Co-operative Republic of Guyana will celebrate 50 years of independence on May 26, 2016 and the country as well as Guyanese in the diaspora intend to mark this milestone with some unforgettable celebratory experiences throughout the year. Not to be outdone, the Guyana Community organizations in Eastern Ontario, facilitated by the Guyana High Commission in Ottawa, together are planning a number of events to ensure the country’s Golden Jubilee of Independence has the same flavour and recognition as it will have elsewhere throughout 2016.
Guyana Listed As A 2016 Must Visit Emerging Destination
Guyana, South America Undiscovered- On the cusp of the 50th Independence Anniversary celebrations Guyana has been accorded yet another distinction, having been featured in the Business Insider UK’s ‘12 Emerging destinations you have to visit in 2016’.
In this most recent feature, broadcast journalist and photojournalist, Anisha Shah explains that 2016 is all about emerging destinations.
“Wilderness, wildlife and culture; these themes will illuminate the year’s travel itineraries. Escapism and authenticity are key and nowhere offers them quite like fledgling and far-flung nations,” she said.
In sharing her perception of the destination, Shah, who is now a freelance journalist for CNN, BBC Travel and Huffington Post wrote, “Dripping in rainforests, Guyana’s untouched pristine interior is sparsely populated, home only to few Amerindian villages. Wildlife far outnumbers the people, with jaguars, pumas and sloths the real locals. The majority of people inhabit the Northeastern narrow Atlantic Ocean coastline of blonde castaway beaches backed by dense forest, home to endangered sea turtles. Kaieteur Falls, one of the grandest falls you’ve never heard of, is the world’s widest single-drop waterfall, peaking at 76m and encased in virgin ancient jungle. Seeing it by tiny charter flight is unforgettable.”
Prime Minister Trudeau’s Back Home From Nevis Vacation
Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is back home after taking a break from the cold with a New Year holiday in St. Kitts and Nevis. Trudeau, his wife Sophie and their children, Xavier, Ella-Grace and Hadrien, spent 10 days on Nevis at the Paradise Beach Resort.
The privately-owned resort at which the Trudeau family stayed, opened in late June and is an exclusive spot for luxury, outdoor wellness, and absolute privacy. It is the only resort on the island to boast beachfront villas.
Eat Easy” At Alima’s
Quietly and without much public fanfare, Alima’s Roti & Pastry (Unit 49-13 Kenview Blvd, Barmpton) has added a full range of delicious “Eat Easy” frozen convenience foods to its already ultra impressive, highly popular range of food offerings. As a favourite destination for persons in the Greater Toronto Area and way beyond, who appreciate authentic Caribbean roti and pastries, Alima’s has been providing take-out (only) service since its 1990 opening. Its menu offerings include Roti Wraps, Parathas, Dhalpuris, an impressive array of Guyanese and Trinidadian pastries, and traditional Loaf Breads.
Recently, as a means of catering to the needs ofbusy moms, dads and young professionals, Alima’s introduced a wide selection of conveniently packaged and frozen “Eat Easy” dishes. Alima’s now impressively extensive range of “Eat Easy” items include lamb and beef pepperpot, stewed fish or beef, dhal and a host of curries: chicken, beef, lamb, shrimp, duck, katahar/chataigne, gilbaka fish, even mango, pumpkin and for ultra vegetarians, soya chunks.
Roy Singh Exploring Niagara Region Cricket Stadium Construction
In further exciting developments of his plans for the construction of a Canadian Cricket Stadium, CPLT20 President Roy Singh, has been engaged in discussions with City Officials in the Niagara Region. Following his initial discussions, the Region’s Officials recently held an internal technical meeting to discuss Singh’s proposal for the conversion of abandoned former race track in the area as a site for the stadium’s construction.
Singh has been further informed that there are no roadblocks or hurdles to developing this property and that once a site plan has been presented a building permit could be issued. The Region’s Engineering officials have also confirmed that all required services sewer, water, gas, electricity are in place.
Click here to get the Dec 16 2015 online edition. Click here for the Dec 16 2015 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Popular Deejay’s Son Killed In Driveby Shooting
A man who died in hospital following a daylight drive-by shooting in the Entertainment District on December 11 has been identified as 28-year-old Joel Alexander. He’s the son of popular Toronto Caribbean “ Soca Vibes” Deejay, Kolin Alexander.
Guyana’s Lisa Punch Wins Miss World 2015 Talent Competition
Miss Guyana World Lisa Punch has moved one step closer to capturing the Miss World crown by winning the much coveted talent competition of the show.
The talent competition took place on December 14 in Sanya, China, ahead of the December 19 finals. The local singer and songwriter captured the audience and the judges as she belted out her original song, One Last Time, which was written in memory of a young cousin who passed away a few years ago.
By winning the talent segment of the show, Punch has secured a spot in the Top 25. It is the first time that a Guyanese delegate to the Miss World pageant has won the talent segment of the show.
Twilight Hosts Annual Toy Drive
Scarborough’s Anthony Ramcharran, the Guyanese-Canadian dual owner of the ever popular Twilight& Starlite Restaurants, will again be hosting his Annual Toy Drive, on Sunday, December 20th. Twilight Restaurant, located at 55 Nugget Avenue, will be the venue for this year’s version of the annual crowd pleaser.
Under its “Keep Giving, Keep Receiving” theme the event will get under way at 2:00 pm with the Kids Activities starting at 3:00pm.
Stadium Construction Crucial to Full Realization of Canadian Cricket’s Immense Potential
The Canadian Premier League T20 has now set its sights on making its debut in 2016. Unable to obtain sanctioning from Cricket Canada, the national sanctioning body for the sport, officials with the league have decided to postpone plans to play in Montreal this August. “But we’re confident everything will be ready to go ahead next summer in Montreal,” said Roy Singh, Chairman and CEO of the Canadian Premier League. “We just ran out of time for this summer.” The league continues to seek financial partners as it moves towards its inaugural season and future construction of a state-ofthe-art covered stadium. It’s a massive undertaking and many critics have said it will never happen. The stadium alone is expected to cost $1 billion. But Singh is absolutely confident the new league will not only become one of Canada’s premier sporting organizations but that the futuristic stadium will also be built. Singh is privately raising funds for the construction of the world’s first purpose-built covered stadium for cricket. He’s also selling shares in the league
With just over a month to go before Christmas, Mrs. Yvonne Codrington of Pickering, Ontario and native of St. Vincent and the Grenadines walked into Pine Ridge Memorial Gardens, Ajax on Friday November 20 to pick up a $10,000.00 cheque won as a result of an annual draw by Arbor Memorial Services.
Earlier this year Mrs. Yvonne Codrington was shopping at the Pickering Town Centre where she came across the temporary booth operated by Pine Ridge Memorial Gardens, a division of Arbor Memorial Inc. Mrs. Codrington stopped by to exchange greetings with the Family Services Director who was supervising the booth, someone whom she knew.
Dr. Suresh Narine, who is regarded as one of the world’s foremost authorities in the groundbreaking field of biomaterials, was recently awarded a multi-million-dollar grant from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada, for a third consecutive term.
NSERC is the primary funding agency supporting Canada’s science and engineering research community. The agency supports almost 30,000 post-secondary students and post-doctoral fellows in their advanced studies.
Professor Narine, a Trent alumnus, professor in Physics and Astronomy and Chemistry, and the director of the Trent Centre for Biomaterials Research (TCBR), received over $500,000 in new NSERC funding, which when combined with new matching funding from industrial partners, Elevance Renewable Sciences, Northwater Capital and the Grain Farmers of Ontario, will see a C’dn$2.25 million funding infusion for his biomaterials research programme over the next five years.
The best New Year’s Eve Gala in town is back for another year. Toronto’s most dynamic Caribbean live band, Fuh Fun, will again be hosting its ever popular New Year’s Eve Gala, at Scarborough’s deluxe Rembrandt Banquet Hall (930 Progress Avenue).
The December 31 Gala Evening which will include a delicious three course dinner, a bottle of red and white wine per table, champagne for midnight toasting and of course lots of party favors, gets under way at 6:00 pm sharp with a Cocktails and Hors D’oeuvres Reception. As an added attraction, this year’s guests will be also entertained by the enjoyable sounds of the very talented Mark Teixeira and his Trio. Dinner will be served at 7:00 sharp.
Vishnu Ramdeen is a Guyanese National who immigrated to Canada in 1987. In 1998 Vishnu founded Precision Truck Lines Inc. and has successfully nurtured and grown that transportation company to include a Specialized Heavy Haul Division, a Storage, Fulfillment and Distribution Division all of which serve the transportation and logistical challenges for thousands of customers in North America and across the globe. During the past decade Vishnu has expanded his business interests into investments and real estate holdings. Together, these various businesses comprise the Precision Group of Companies whose head office is located in Toronto, Canada. The group maintains offices in California and in Guyana.
Recently Vishnu investigated the viability of the coconut business and more particularly the coconut industry in Guyana. Encouraged, he incorporated Precision Global Incorporated (Precision) in Georgetown, according to the laws of Guyana.
The ultimate vision of Precision is to play a significant role in the revitalization of the Coconut Industry of Guyana. Precision recognizes the potential of Guyana to compete on a global scale as a supplier of high quality coconut products including but not limited to, virgin cold pressed coconut oil (VCO), desiccated coconut products, coconut shell charcoal and coconut flour. In addition, the company will play a vital role in the Guyana’s need for permanent and sustainable fulltime employment for its citizens. Precision will offer a fair and stable market for coconuts thereby contributing to making coconut farming to a profitable business for many Guyanese farmers.
Undaunted by the Cricket Canada sanction provision refusal that scuttled his ambitious plans for launching his Canadian T20 Premier League this past summer, cricket visionary Roy Singh has taken his message on this country’s desperate need for a cricket stadium overseas. Singh recently presented his Canadian Cricket Stadium development plans to a captive audience of hundreds at the October 20-21 Stadium Business Design & Development Summit in London, England.
Singh’s visionary and ambitious cricket stadium plans were very well received by all attendees.
In a superbly crafted twenty minute speech, Singh told the Summit’s attendees that he’d charged his designers with the task of creating a world class stadium where cricket could be played year round.
The Independent Review Panel of the Caribbean Community (Caricom) Sub-Committee on Cricket Governance has recommended that the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) be disbanded and an interim committee installed to run the affairs of cricket in the region.
The review panel recently submitted the report to Caricom after three months of consultations, during which it also conducted interviews and held deliberations. It was chaired by principal of the Cave Hill Campus of the University of the West Indies, Professor V Eudine Barriteau, and included president of the Caribbean Court of Justice Sir Denis Byron, former Trinidad & Tobago and West Indies cricketer Deryck Murray, president of the Caribbean Development Bank Dr Warren Smith, and president of the Grenada Cricket Association Dwain Gill. It worked through the Guyana-based Caribbean Community Secretariat.
The Huffington Post’s recent listing of the top 30 restaurants in Scarborough includes four Caribbean owned eateries. ACR Hot Doubles& Roti (2860 Lawrence Avenue E), The Roti Hut (351 Pitfield Rd), Chris Jerk Caribbean Bistro (2570 Birchmount Rd) and Drupatis (1085) were the four Caribbean owned restaurants listed in the top 30 rankings.
On both of his recent visits to Canada this year, Guyana’s President David Granger had expressed a wish for significant numbers of Guyanese-Canadians to return home with the skills and experience they have acquired from their years abroad. One Guyanese-Canadian business owner, Jainarine (Richard) Autar, has immediately responded to the President’s call. In doing so he has set a most worthy example for others to follow.
Mere weeks after President Granger’s most recent visit, Autar began making plans to completely transfer Pioneer Stairs and Railings, which he’s owned for almost twenty years, to Guyana. Autar has now completed loading all his company machinery into a container for transhipment to Guyana. He expects the container to be in Guyana by the end of December and hopes to have his operations fully functional at a temporary factory by next May.
Grenadian-born Celina Wins Whitby For Trudeau’s Liberals!
Grenadian-born Celina Caesar-Chavannes was one of the Ontario victors as the Justin Trudeau led Liberals swept to a majority win the October 19 Federal Elections. Caesar-Chavannes edged out Conservative incumbent MP Pat Perkins in the former Tory stronghold of Whitby.
The race went down to the wire as Caesar-Chavannes built on her previous gains established in a 2014 by-election in the redrawn riding.
Venezuela Advocates Caribbean, Latin America Economic Zone
ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada, Venezuelan president Nicolás Maduro is advocating the establishment of an economic zone for the Caribbean and Latin American. He says the economic zone should be part of a production and economic plan aimed at curbing the region’s high import bill.
During a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Dr. Keith Mitchell in Grenada over the October 17-18 weekend, the Venezuelan leader also suggested the establishment of a commerce and purchase agreement with Caribbean countries.
Tameshwar Lilmohan: Guyana’s Canadian Ministerial Advisor On Diaspora Affairs
As the recently appointed Canadian Ministerial Advisor On Diaspora Affairs for Guyana’s Ministry of the Presidency, Tameshwar Lilmohan’s primary responsibility will be to assert the positive influence of the Guyanese-Canadians on all aspects of the country’s affairs. Business, Security, Cultural and Social Affairs and Education included. He has also been charged with ensuring that the new Guyana Coalition Government fully recognizes and engages the potential of Canadian Diaspora based Guyanese to make significant contributions to Guyana in the areas of technology, treasury and talent.
Eddie Grant To Perform At 50th Independence Anniversary Mega Concert
Guyana is bring promised a “wow” celebration for the country’s 50th independence celebrations, and the organizers have already scored big with a commitment from Guyanese international superstar Eddy Grant.The native son, who has performed at mega events around the world, had shunned Guyana because of the absence of copyright legislation, but it seems he is ready to end that drought.
Laurie London, Chief Executive Officer of the National Commemoration Committee for the Fiftieth anniversary celebration has said that Eddy Grant has indicated his willingness to perform and the committee will respond in affirmative, giving him a royal superstar welcome.
After Guyana laid down “the facts” regarding the border controversy with Venezuela in a meeting with the United Nations Secretary General, Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro agreed to backtrack on some of his earlier positions as Georgetown seeks a legal end to the controversy. At a meeting convened by the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon with President David Granger and Maduro in New York, the Venezuelan President agreed to send back his Ambassador to Guyana and to accredit the new Guyanese Ambassador Cheryl Miles. He had put the accreditation of Miles on hold after complaining about statements Foreign Minister Carl Greenidge allegedly made to a Florida conference earlier this month.
They were only just recently graced with the stately presence of their homeland’s President David Granger and his wife First Lady Sandra Granger. Now Toronto’s Guyanese-Canadian community can look forward in eager anticipation to the forthcoming visit of the country’s Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, accompanied by a high powered delegation of Government Ministers.
Confirmation has been received that Guyana’s Prime Minister and First Vice President Moses Nagamootoo, Minister of National Security and Vice President Khemraj Ramjattan , Minister of Business and Investment Domenic Gaskin, as well as Minister of National Infrastructures David Patterson will be coming to Toronto over the October 10-11 weekend.
Cricket Hall OF Fame Induction For Lionel Bedessee
Toronto’s Guyanese-born Lionel Bedessee, founder of Bedessee Imports, will be inducted to the Hartford Connecticut’s Cricket Hall of Fame on Saturday, October 3, 2015. Mr. Bedessee will join former Pakistani star batsman, Zaheer Abbas, former Canadian Cricket Association President Dr Geoff Edwards and others as 2015 inductees to the US based Cricket Hall of Fame, reputed to be the world’s first of its kind.
Bedessee Sports is a Division of Bedessee Imports family owned business, which has had an involvement with cricket as an equipment supplier for over 60 years. As its founder, Mr. Lionel Bedessee has been purchasing cricket equipment from as far back as when he opened a business in British Guiana back in 1954. After immigrating to Canada, he re-established ties with such manufacturers as Gray Nicholls and began purchasing cricket equipment in 1978.
Dance theater production AKOMA will make its highly anticipated Toronto premiere at the Betty Oliphant Theatre on October 30 2015.
Choreographed, written and directed by critically acclaimed dancer Esie Mensah, AKOMA: The Journey Into The Heart of Africa is a cultural dance theatre event. Showcasing the journey of one young man’s voyage from Ghana to Canada it tells a story relatable to many immigrants.
At its core this is a heartfelt success story of an immigrant, a story of perseverance and faith depicting in essence what it means to be Canadian.
Remarking that his country can be found on two continents, because “25% of us live in South America while the other 75% live in North America,” Guyana’s President David Arthur Granger, told a Toronto love-in audience of approximately 700 Guyanese Canadians that his new Government was committed to pursuing economic independence for the country in the immediate future. President Granger, who’s Toronto return was the fulfillment of a promise made during his pre-Election visit last April, told the September 12 Gala Dinner audience that his government is committed to diversifying the country’s economy to make it less reliant on its traditional exports of raw national resources such as sugar, rice, gold and timber. He also pledged that his Coalition Government would modernize Guyana’s communications infrastructure, curb corruption, make the country a safe haven for those nationals who wish to return and transform the nation into an eco-tourism destination.
Canada based Timeless Herbal Care Limited (THC) has announced that it has secured a US$100-million deal to develop medical marijuana products here in Jamaica for the international market. Courtney Betty, the Jamaican- Canadian who heads THC, did not go into great detail, but said the deal would create job opportunities for many Jamaicans. He said the deal was buttressed by the decision of the Jamaican Government to decriminalise ganja for medicinal purposes.
Canadian based artist Robert Young made a presentation of his Face of Guyana painting to the country’s President David Granger, during the President’s September 12-13 Toronto visit. The presentation was made at the conclusion of the September 13 media Conference which President Granger attended
According to his official Bio, Robert Young’s artistry is encapsulated by his personal mantra, Living passionately, Guided spiritually, Focused definitively. His mission to Capture Life’s Passion has taken him from his native Canada to stunning locations in Trinidad and Tobago, South Africa, Sierra Leone, Romania, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Netherlands, Jamaica, Germany, France, England, Dominican Republic, China, Barbados, and the United States of America.
Click here to get the Aug 26 2015 online edition. Click here for the Aug 26 2015 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Jamaican Double Gold, Bolt, Fraser-Pryce Soar At World Championships!
Jamaica’s Men’s and Women’s 100 meters sprint Champions, Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce confirmed
their status as the world’s best with repeat victories in their respective events at the Athletics World Championships in Beijing China’s Birdsnest Stadium. First, sprinting legend Usain Bolt showed that it’s not how you start, but how you finish, covering an otherwise miserable season in Beijing gold after retaining his 100m title at the IAAF World Championships in Athletics.
All Black Lives Matter At 10th Annual International Film Festival
The CaribbeanTales International Film Festival (CTFF) will present five nights of bold, original film programming that engages the ongoing conversations spotlighted by the #AllBlackLivesMatter movement, expanding and focussing the discussion through a modern Caribbean lens.
The curated program under the CTFF -#ALLBLACKLIVESMMATER banner includes Leticia Tonos’ prescient and timely 2013 film Christo Rey that explores the systemic oppression of Haitians living in the Dominican Republic through a Romeo and Juliet-like love story; Karen Mafundikwa’s The Price of Memory, that traces the movement for slavery reparations from Europe, and unflinchingly presents the arguments for and against; and Stacey Buchanan’s The Blind Stigma, that throws into relief the prejudices surrounding mental illness in the Black and Afro-Caribbean communities. The series also includes several provocative and timely short film.
Harbourfront’s Hot & Spicy Food Festival
Harbourfront Centre is pleased to present the 18th edition of its delectable Hot & Spicy Food Festival, September 4–7. This four-day festival is a must-try for any foodie curious about creative cuisines around the city and the globe. The weekend will feature food demonstrations, culinary competitions, crafts and musicians, including SoundClash’s champion, Above Top Secret.
The 4th Annual Independence Day Cricket Classic under the patronage of Dr. Vidhya Gyan Tota-Maharaj, Consul General of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago in Toronto. The event will be held on Sunday 30th August, 2015 at Scarborough Campus, University of Toronto Cricket Grounds, 130 Old Kingston Road, Scarborough, ON., to commemorate the 53rd Anniversary of Independence of Trinidad and Tobago and Jamaica. The format will be a T20 match involving teams representing Trinidad & Toabgo and Jamaica.
Finance Minister Winston Jordan has unveiled his highly guarded and anticipated National Budget in the National Assembly to the tune of $221 Billion. The Opposition People’s Progressive Party remained absent from the National Assembly during the presentation.
Of this amount, some $97 billion is programmed to be spent on current and capital expenditure during the last four months of 2015.
The Budget delivered on several of the coalition government elections promised and boasts of salary increases for public servants, pension increases and massive plans for the sugar and rice industry which are among the major drivers of the economy.
Minister of State Joseph Harmon and Tourism Minister Cathy Hughes, recently led a small delegation to Canada, in order to update Guyanese in the diaspora of the plans and objectives of the new administration.
“Last Lap Lime”, an event in Canada” The delegation visited Toronto to engage the diaspora at the 20th anniversary of the Lst Lap Lime, regarded as the largest gathering of overseas based Guyanese. is hosted by several alumni associations linked to schools in Guyana.
At the “Last Lap Lime”, the team also managed to set up an information booth displaying banners, flyers, brochures and other tourism and investment information.
Minister Hughes, who was assisted by Senior Tourism Development Officer, Sanchia Persaud, manned the booth along with Guyana’s Honorary Consul in Toronto, Sattie Sawh.
The Financial Services industry offers one of the few opportunities for individual Canadians to earn in excess of $100,000 annually towards the achievement of their respective financial goals. As such Financial Planning Consultant Careers can indeed be lucrative and rewarding. Yet the actual reality has been that the greater majority of those who enter this field are destined not only to fail, but to also quit in search of seemingly more reliable sources of income. Indeed, the attrition rate within Canadian financial services companies is amongst the very highest in country, oftentimes as high as 80% for those entering and exiting within the first three years.
Click here to get the July 22 2015 online edition. Click here for the July 22 2015 pdf version, best for offline reading.
Last Saturday’s July 18 Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival Junior Parade in Malvern Scarborough featured some 1,500 Kiddie masqueraders strutting their stuff. The Parade also attracted the attendance of many political notables including Ontario’s Premier Kathleen Wynne, Toronto’s Mayor, John Tory, Bas Balkissoon, Raymond Cho, Rathika Sitsabaiesan and even Opposition Leader Justin Trudeau.
JUMO, DRUPATIE HIGHLIGHT CMF 2015 LADIES NIGHT OUT
Saturday, August 1 is the date for this year’s 9th Annual Caribbean Music Fest Main Event: Ladies Night Out Boat Cruise, aboard the Empress of Canada. Ladies Night Out 2015 will feature perennial favorite, Mr. Rubba Waist himself, “Jumo Primo from Byron Lee,” joined by the ultimate Chutney/Soca Queen “The One And Only Drupatee”!!!
Invariably sold out every year and known to be one of the most popular, well organized and established events in Toronto., Ladies Night Out 2015 will be hosted by Kevin Carrington (Aka the voice from Boom FM). Alongside him will be two of Toronto’s best Caribbean Style DJs: AKX & DJ DOOBZ. Plus a cast of Dancers CMF has added to keep its patrons entertained all night long…
Empress of Canada’s Ladies Night Out Boarding (11 Polson St, Toronto) is at 9:00pm sharp for the 5 hour Cruise. The $50 per person admission ticket is meal inclusive.
Harbourfront’s Island Soul To feature Alison Hinds Island Soul
One of Harbourfront Centre’s most popular festivals, returns for a long weekend celebration of the rich tapestry of Caribbean arts and culture. Island Soul will take the audience on an odyssey across generations. It will trace the roots of modern-day steelpan music from its origins, showcase the diversity of the French Caribbean and celebrate Bob Marley’s immense global impact since his birth 70 years ago. The weekend kicks off with five-time Juno award-winner Jane Bunnett & Maqueque opening for soca queen Alison Hinds. The weekend will close with a three-hour concert featuring the best of Toronto’s calypso and soca artists, in collaboration with the Organization of Calypso Performing Artistes.
Merry Monarchs Set To Rule At OCPA’s Calypso Extravaganza
Calypso Monarchs: Canada’s Macomere Fifi, Trinidad & Tobago’s David Rudder as well as Aaron Duncan, the twin islands’ Junior Calypso & Chutney Monarch are set to rule at the Organization of Calypso Performing Artistes (OCPA) July 25, 2015 Merry Monarch Calypso Extravaganza. As legends in their own right, Fifi and Rudder will be joined on stage by Duncan, as Trinidad’s latest Calypso sensation.
The Chairman of a 15-member Caribbean trade bloc has said late that he backs Guyana’s government amid an escalating border dispute with neighboring Venezuela. Freundel Stuart spoke at a July 4 Press Conference as Caricom leaders ended a three-day summit in Barbados.
“Caricom stands firmly behind Guyana,” he said. “We do not think that there can be any compromise so far as Guyana’s territorial borders is concerned.”
As the Last Lap Lime (a collaboration by five alumni associations In Toronto), celebrates its 20 years of existence, St. Rose’s Alumni Association is proud to be a part of this group.
SRAAT has been active since the first meeting was held on May 31, 1987. The Association’s objective has been and continue to be “to encourage and foster the interest of the Alumni in the present day activities of St. Rose’s High School in Guyana for the propose of contributing to the sphere of educations the school by giving help to it and other related institutions in Guyana”
Torontonians are invited to spice up their weekend August 8 and 9 at the 14th annual JerkFest held at Centennial Park from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. each day. Founded in 2001 as a one-day festival, this year’s JerkFest will be the largest one to date, with over 25 jerk food vendors, 6 light food vendors and an anticipated 60,000 visitors.
This year’s festival will be testing the theory; if you can name it, you can jerk it! With jerk food vendors serving everything from traditional jerk chicken, beef, pork and lamb, to more exotic meats like alligator, kangaroo, and moose. Some of this year’s vendors will even be experimenting with rare jerk fusion dishes.
Rembrandt banquet Hall, 930 Progress Avenue, will be the place to be on Sunday, August 2nd, for Toronto’s most dynamic live band Fuh Fun’s hosting of its annual Caribana Fete. Tickets are $50 including dinner for the guaranteed good time evening which will also feature Deejays TeeCee and Boogie Down. The Cash Bar opens at 6:00 pm. The buffet dinner will be served at 7:00pm sharp.
Father’s Day Weekend Toronto Premiere For Made In Barbados Movie!
VIGILANTE – The Crossing, a new film which explores the racial and social barriers of the peoples of a Caribbean island, will screen for the first time in Canada at the recently renovated Innis Town Hall, 2 Sussex Ave, Toronto on Saturday, June 20 at 8 p.m. and Sunday June 21 at 4 p.m.
VIGILANTE stars Kirk Brown as Dexter Gooding and Malissa Alanna as Amy. Brown is an award-winning singer and song-writer, and a versatile deejay on 98.1FM, one of the leading radio stations in Barbados.
Guyana Warns Venezuela Over Sea Boundary ‘Escalation’
Tensions have soared in Guyana as a result of Venezuela having declared its territorial seas re-drawn to include an offshore area where a major oil deposit has been found. Neighbouring Venezuela already claims two thirds of Guyana’s territory, from its eastern border over to the Essequibo River, in what has become Latin America’s largest territorial dispute.
JaNae Armogan: Still Living The Dream!
By Tony McWatt
If acting career success was solely dependent upon good looks and a most charming personality JaNae Armogan would be by now a multiple Oscar winner. Coupled with a natural beauty that is very easy on the eyes, hers is a most engaging personality. The type that draws you in and keeps you captivatingly entranced. To engage in conversation with the ever articulate JaNae is to embark on a journey of such delightful intellectual enjoyment that renders time wholly insufficient.
St Joseph’s High Toronto Alumni Celebrates its 27th Year
The St. Joseph’s Alumni Association was initiated in 1988 in Scarborough , Ontario. Its primary objective is to provide assistance for the advancement of the students and the physical development of its Alma Mater in Guyana.
Over the last twenty-seven years, the Association has fulfilled this mandate by contributing to a number of projects and giving bursaries to students.
President Granger Urges Evolution As Guyanese Celebrate Independence
President David Granger on Tuesday May 26 urged Guyanese to evolve as one and dedicate their energies towards building Guyana as a nation.
President Granger was at the time addressing thousands of Guyanese and dignitaries of CARICOM and UNASUR as Guyana celebrated 49 years as an nation Independent of British rule. Guyanese stood in the pouring rain in the streets surrounding the 1763 Monument ‘Cuffy’ at the Square of the Revolution, downtown Georgetown.
“Let us evolve to work together to change our society,” said President Granger as he addressed the crowd. He said “we have a duty to actualize the vision of our nation’s founding fathers who fought to create a new state, we have a duty to continue the work they started.”
We Ready For The Road!
Scotiabank Toronto Caribbean Carnival (STCC) held its Kick-off Media Conference on Tuesday May 26 at the Ontario Science Centre. Feva TV captured this photo of STCC head honchos Denise Herrera Jackson and Chris Alexander posing with some of the costumed models. Let the Mas begin!
PanAM Games Torchbearer Kiran Ganness Inspired By His Mom & Granma
Having always enjoyed a close affiliation to the West Indian culture with both his dad and grandparents hailing from from Trinidad, PanAm Games Torchbearer Kiran Ganness says that his Mom Usha and Grandma Ruby Ramdial have been sources of strength in his life journey to date. His mom has taught him to be humble yet strong, to have faith and compassion, to work hard and persevere so that my dreams can become a reality. From his Grandma he’s learnt how to love unconditionally. She has supported him in all of his undertakings thus far.
They have both helped to shape Kiran into the well balanced individual that he is today. He has been nominated for a Lifetime Achievement Sports Award at the Sports Hall of Honour in the city of Toronto. He has also been selected as a torchbearer for the PanAm Games 2015 in the city of Ajax on June 6th.
Lloyd’s Letter Of Disbandment To Shiv!
On Tuesday May 19, head of the West Indies Cricket Board’s (WICB) selection panel, Clive Lloyd, in a letter to Shivnarine Chanderpaul, informed him of his axing from the training squad which is set to oppose Australia in a two-Test series from June 3. Chanderpaul, a dedicated servant to West Indies Cricket for the past 21 years, released the letter along with a conversation between him and the recently appointed Head Coach of the side, Phil Simmons, about his current situation.
Launching what they called “the People’s Manifesto” in modest style at Stabroek Market’s South Georgetown Bus Park, during the April 30 afternoon, the A Partnership for National Unity +Alliance for Change (APNU+AFC) Coalition made public their official plans for the country should they get into power after Guyana’s May 11 Elections. Surrounded by a sizeable gathering of ordinary citizens, invited organisations and party officials, the Coalition announced their plans to turn Guyana back into a country that all can be proud of. Inspired by the people, for the best interests of the people, the “People’s Manifesto includes a 100-day implementation plan, as well as a five-year strategy, which the Coalition boasts will be used to eradicate the major ills affecting Guyanese society.
GKMS’ CEO Michelle Allen Embracing The Borderless Possibilities For Customer Service
GraceKennedy Money Services’ (GKMS) Chief Executive Officer Michelle Allen was among the many luminous personalities in attendance at the Toronto May 6 hosting of Network Caribbean’s Borderless Possibilities Townhall event. Allen, who has been here several times before, joined keynote speakers: Jamaica’s Former Prime Minister, the Most Honourable P.J Patterson, GraceKennedy Ltd’s Group Chief Executive Officer Don Wehby and Western Union’s Caribbean Vice President & General Manager Sean Mason for the Townhall event hosted by CBC’s Television ever popular News Anchor Dwight Drummond.
In the Caribbean, loose leaf tea or in traditional lingo ‘bush tea’, is essential to the culture. Made from local herbal plants, loose leaf tea is used for its various health benefits as a means of maintaining an overall state of well-being and charismatic quality of life.
Asha Leaf, which recently launched its own line of Loose Leaf teas, aims to share the warmth and majesty of the Caribbean experience by utilizing traditionally used herbs combined with dried fruits, flowers and other forms of vegetation to create enticing and rejuvenating tea infusions.
2015 CARIBBEAN & SOUTH ASIAN SHOWCASE
The Ranji Singh Foundation (RSF), a non-profit charitable organization, has announced its plans for hosting the 2015 Caribbean & South Asian Showcase as a two day Festival and in conjunction with two days of Softball Cricket. The CASAS Festival celebrates an exciting, inviting intercultural exchange of music, dance, food and fashion that reflect the rich artistic and cultural contributions to the Canadian mosaic.
The Light Has Turned From Red To Green And Gold Says Granger
The APNU-AFC Presidential Candidate in Guyana’s forthcoming May 11 National Elections David Granger has told Toronto’s Guyanese Community that a unity government is the way for Guyana to go and he is committed to form a government of national unity that will represent all Guyanese. On April 19, Mr. Granger and his running mate, Moses Nagamootoo, met with hundreds of Guyanese at a Toronto fundraising evening. Granger told the gathering that Guyana has been in a state of crisis under the People’s Progressive Party Civic and it is time to change that.
Saunders Is Toronto’s New Police Chief
The Toronto Police Services Board has picked Mark Saunders as its new chief. Saunders, a deputy chief and the officer in charge of the TO2015 Pan Am Games, will take over from Bill Blair, who is set to retire on April 24. Saunders “represented the best choice among excellent choices” available to replace Blair, Mayor John Tory said at an April 20 News Conference.
Saunders, whose children range in age from 10 to 26, was born in the U.K. to Jamaican parents and immigrated to Canada as a child. The married father of four will be the city’s first black police chief, stepping into the role during a turbulent time between the force and some minority communities.
Western Union and GraceKennedy Presents The 3rd Annual Network Caribbean Town Hall.
Jamaica’s Former Prime Minister, the Most Honourable P.J Patterson, GraceKennedy Ltd’s Group Chief Executive Officer Don Wehby and Western Union’s Caribbean Vice President & General Manager Sean Mason will be the Keynote Speakers for the Network Caribbean’s Borderless Possibilities Town hall Event. Presented by GraceKennedy and Western Union and hosted by CBC’s Television ever popular News Anchor Dwight Drummond.
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