Super eight! – RJR names stars for top sports awards

first_imgJust eight names were announced yesterday as nominees for the RJR Sports Foundation’s National Sportsman and Sportswoman of the Year awards set for January 13, 2017. However, chairman of the selection committee Mike Fennell pointed to the committee’s “strict criteria” for the small number of nominees this year even as chairman of the Foundation Gary Allen, highlighted the event’s remarkable growth over the years. Triple Olympic gold medallist Usain Bolt heads the list of three male nominees compared to last year’s five, while Rio sprint double champion Elaine Thompson topped the list of six female nominees. There were eight in 2015. “This is what the performances indicate, and based on that, we are not lowering the bar to go to other events because it starts at the world level,” said Fennell at yesterday’s launch at, he Jamaica Pegasus. “The year was dominated by the Olympic Games for individual performances. There are other performances where people were a part of relay teams, and so those people will get special awards.” Fennell added: “It will be good if we had more in many other sports. It would be ideal, of course, if we had half a dozen different sports on the nomination list, but we have ways to go with those other sports in getting to the world level.” The other male nominees are Olympic 110m hurdles champion Omar McLeod and West Indies cricketer Marlon Samuels. The remaining female nominees are track stars Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce and Shericka Jackson, swimmer Alia Atkinson, and female cricketer Stafanie Taylor. The cut-off date for possible additions is December 31. Allen noted that the committee has to look at ways to increase the accommodation for the awards ceremony because of the huge demands. “We now have an event were the demand is outstripping our ability to accommodate people here at The Pegasus,” Allen said. Last year, he said more than 500 people were in attendance and some were even turned back. “We don’t want to do that, and so for the last couple of years, we have been looking around and saying, is there a way we can influence potential venues to step up to another level in terms of us being able to expand the numbers,” Allen said, noting that many of those with interest in the ceremony are key players in sports in Jamaica. The Victoria Mutual Building Society (VMBS) Youth Award will be a new addition to this year’s award ceremony. This award will focus on athletes considered to be not only new talent, but also those who are not professional, meaning they do not earn a living from their sporting discipline. Each nominee must be under 21 years old. According to Vivienne Bayley-Hay, director of marketing and corporate affairs at VMBS, the award is going to recognise Jamaica’s “next Usain Bolt or Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce”. “We think the winner can come from any sport. One of the things that was tremendous in the Rio Olympics is the fact that we have expanded the sporting disciplines that Jamaica was represented in.” “I think that with the talent we have in this country, if we continue to support and to recognise them, I have no doubt that Jamaica will excel in all disciplines. No nominees for the award have been named as yet. Bayley-Hay said the nominees will be selected closer towards the end of the year. Bahamian Olympian Pauline Davis-Thompson would be the guest speaker at this year’s awards ceremony. Other awards include the Chairman’s award, the People’s Choice award, and the Lifetime Achievement award. The nominees for the People’s Choice awards are Atkinson’s 50m short-course breaststroke world record swim; Calabar’s 4x400m Open relay win at Boys and Girls Championships; Michael Binns’ 35-yard goal in the Premier League; Elaine Thompson’s 200m run in Rio, and Yona Knight-Wisdom’s series of dives at the Olympics. (Sportsman of the Year) Usain Bolt Omar McLeod Marlon Samuels (Sportswoman of the Year) Alia Atkinson Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce Elaine Thompson Shericka Jackson Stafanie Taylor NOMINEES:last_img read more

Guyana has growing domestic drug use problem ‒ US report

first_img…marijuana, cocaine most prevalent; ecstasy also presentA United States (US) State Department report has declared that while Guyana has a comprehensive drug demand reduction strategy, the use of drugs like marijuana and even cocaine is a growing problem.This information is contained in the recently released 2019 International Narcotics Control Strategy Report, which has a section dedicated to Guyana’s profile.Notwithstanding the trafficking, the report notes, actual consumption of these drugs is a growing problem. According to the report, marijuana is the most commonly used drug.The document also noted reported seizures of synthetic drugs like Methylene-dioxyamphetamine (MDMA), most commonly known as “ecstasy”, and detailed Government’s response to the scourge.“The Government of Guyana’s National Drug Abuse Control Unit trains public health officers, teachers, social workers, and civil society groups as part of the Government’s supply reduction strategy,” the report states.“The Guyanese Government has a drug enforcement presence at its international airports, post offices, and to a lesser extent at seaport and land-border entry points. Control agencies reported several interdiction efforts and drug-related seizures and convictions during the first nine months of 2018”, the report detailed.The report notes that during the first nine months of 2018, authorities seized 164.9 kilograms (kg) of cocaine and 889kg of cannabis. It also states that local authorities initiated 358 prosecutions and convicted 24 individuals for drug trafficking.The report has expressed faith in Guyana’s demand reduction strategy, noting that it adequately addresses drug rehabilitation. It named the Ministry of Public Health, Ministry of Education, and Ministry of Social Protection as the relevant Ministries responsible for addressing demand reduction.”Non-governmental organisations also offer rehabilitation services, with the Government providing financial assistance.“The Georgetown Public Hospital provides free rehabilitation services for drug users. The University of Guyana has a demand reduction curriculum in place through OAS/CICAD funding”, the report detailed.“The Government of Guyana conducts anti-drug awareness sessions in secondary schools, and has plans to create drug treatment courts. As part of the Caribbean Basin Security Initiative (CBSI), the United States supports Guyana through targeted training for law enforcement and maritime officers”, the report declared.Guyana’s laws currently provide for a mandatory three-year jail sentence for anyone found in possession of small amounts of marijuana and other illicit drugs. This has led to the incarceration of petty offenders and, persons have opined, has contributed to an overcrowding of the country’s prisons. There has, however, been a push to remove custodial sentencing for possession of small amounts of marijuana through legislation.As at January 2017, there was a total of 2,043 inmates in Guyana’s five jails, although the largest one – the Camp Street prison – was subsequently gutted in a fire. At the time, the Georgetown prisons had 963 inmates, 521 of whom were on remand; Lusignan had 153, of whom 32 were on remand; Mazaruni had 360 and Timehri had 130 inmates including 28 remanded inmates.All of the aforementioned prisoners were male, while New Amsterdam had a male prison population of 352 and a female population of 85. One hundred and fifty of those men and 31 women were on remand.The Camp Street Prison reached the end of the line on July 9, 2017, when prisoners set that facility on fire, occasioning its complete destruction, except for a newly built brick building which is still standing intact.Following that jailbreak, over 1000 prisoners were displaced.While some were moved to Mazaruni or granted early release or bail, others had remained at Lusignan under straightened circumstances.It was then that another contingent escaped.Since these two jailbreaks, all but one prison escapee – Paul Goriah – have either been recaptured or killed.last_img read more

Sprint Cars Cancelled

first_imgWe’ve been told that the sprint cars, scheduled to hit the Taylor speedway have been cancelled, still business as usual in the valley though, as all the other events will be on the go – 3 pm on Saturday, 1 pm on Sunday.- Advertisement –last_img