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CaribNews Round Up

Four to get Keys to City

IN celebration of International Reggae Day on July 1, the Kingston and St Andrew Municipal Corporation (KSAMC) will present the Keys to the City to four artistes on a date to be announced.

They are Bunny Wailer, Ernie Smith, Marcia Griffiths, and Beres Hammond.

The decision was made at a KSAMC council meeting in downtown Kingston on Tuesday. Jamaica Labour Party Councillor Tosha Schwapp of the Stony Hill Division, who moved the resolution, described the artistes as “outstanding musical icons” who helped put Jamaica “further on the map”.

People’s National Party (PNP) Councillor Venesha Phillips (Papine Division), who seconded the resolution, said she and her minority colleagues happily supported the move.

Bunny Wailer, a founding member of the Wailing Wailers — which comprised Bob Marley and Peter Tosh — is one of reggae music’s greats. During the 1990s he won the Grammy Award for Best Reggae Album three times.

Griffiths, a former member of Marley’s harmony trio I-Three, is considered one of the standard-bearers of reggae music.

With a catalogue spanning more than three decades, Smith has made an indelible mark on Jamaican music, while lovers’ rock singer Beres Hammond has maintained his run as a prolific hitmaker.

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American ex-nurse convicted of murder for hire of J’can-born husband

NEW YORK, United States (CMC) — A Caribbean American ex-registered nurse in Brooklyn, New York has been convicted of hiring a hitman to murder her Jamaican-born husband in 2013 after two failed attempts at the victim’s life.

The gunman was also convicted of murder.

On Wednesday, it took a jury less than three hours to convict Alishia Noel-Murray, 29 — whose father, Andrew Noel, was born in Grenada, and mother, Pauline Noel, also a registered nurse, was born in Guyana — of having her husband, Omar Murray, 37, killed to cash in on nearly US$900,000 in life insurance claims.

Both of Noel-Murray’s parents are separated and reside in Brooklyn. Pauline Noel, a born-again Christian, who strongly opposed to her daughter’s actions, testified against her daughter at trial.

Jurors found Noel-Murray, who was fired by the Visiting Nurse Service of New York, guilty of murder, attempted murder and weapon possession in the February 23, 2013 assassination of her husband.

“She’s a real monster,” Murray’s Jamaican-born mother, Eunice Ashley Henry, 59, a home health aide in Brooklyn, told reporters after the verdict. “I’m ecstatic. I’m overwhelmed, but I’m still missing my son.”

Describing Noel-Murray as “the devil,” Eunice Ashley Henry said her daughter-in-law had “tried so many times to kill my son.”

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Push back!

MEMBER of Parliament (MP) for Manchester North Western Mikael Phillips has called for a push back against Caribbean Community (Caricom) countries that continue to shut out Jamaicans who are legitimately seeking employment in those member states under the free movement clause of the Caribbean Single Market and Economy (CSME).

The Ministry of Labour and Social Security (MLSS) has revealed that most member countries have not made the necessary legislative changes to recognise the five categories that were added to the original list of workers that are eligible for employment in all member states under the agreement.

Phillips argued that employers in some of these countries that are resistant to amending their laws are at the same time encouraging Jamaicans to take up jobs which pay low wages.

“If they have the certificate they will have to pay them a higher wage, but yet they encourage them to come down there; if they make it through immigration it’s fine and good, but once they get caught there is no repercussion to that employer. As a country we have to protect our own nationals in applying pressure to these member states to either adjust or we also have a stringent entrance application,” he said.

The matter was raised at a meeting of the Public Administration and Appropriations Committee of Parliament by MP for Manchester Southern, Michael Stewart.

Director of Work Permits at the MLSS, Lisa-Ann Grant, explained that because the five new categories are not acknowledged by some states in law, this presents a challenge for Jamaicans with Caricom skills certificates who are seeking employment in those countries.

This affects teachers and nurses with diplomas and associate degrees; artisans with at least a level II CVQ from the HEART Trust/NTA; domestic workers; and holders of associate degrees or comparable qualifications.

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