Friday, 23 October 2020

Bahamas Press Club to Present at The World Press Clubs Alliance for Climate in Brussels

 

The Bahamas Press Club 2014 will join 120 press club partners around the world in the groundbreaking World Press Clubs Alliance for Climate to be held virtually at The Press Club Brussels Europe (PCBE).

The event will take place on Friday, October 23, 2020 - the eve of Climate Action Day – in a first ever 24-hour non-stop press conference. More than 23,000 affiliated journalists will participate successively in 24 time zones on positive climate actions and innovations.

The Bahamas Press Club 2014 is a charter member of the ACP Press Clubs Federation, with its Immediate Past President Anthony Newbold serving as Vice President.

As part of its contribution to the World Press Clubs Alliance for Climate press conference, The Bahamas Press Club 2014’s presentation submitted was centered on a video presentation provided by the Climate Change Unit in the Ministry of Environment and Housing.

The video, featured remarks by Prime Minister the Most Hon Dr Hubert A Minnis at a recent United Nationals General Assembly on Climate Change, the Hon Romauld Ferreira, Minister of the Environment and Housing who outlined activities of his ministry to combat Climate Change and its impact on the country, the Hon Darren Henfield, Minister of Foreign Affairs who exchanged views at the 20th Commonwealth Foreign Affairs Ministers Meeting on the threat posed by Climate Change, Dr Rhianna Neely-Murphy, Head of the Climate Change Unit, Ministry of Environment and Housing, Shenique Albury-Smith, Director, The Nature Conservancy and other stakeholders.

Anthony Capron, President of The Bahamas Club 2014 said that the organization was pleased to participate in such a prestigious worldwide, groundbreaking press conference focusing on the climate.

“We know for a fact that global warming is taking place. Something must be done now to limit greenhouse gas emissions in the hope that its effects thus far can be reversed,” Mr. Capron said.

To view the press conference log on to The World Press Clubs Alliance for Climate website: www.worldpressclubsallianceforclimate.com

The Bahamas: (1 PM EST)


Please see wetransfer link below. (download within 48 hours)

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Contact Lindsay Thompson, Secretary @ 242-434-5643

For more about the Bahamas Press Club 2014, visit www.bahamaspressclub.org

Facebook: The Bahamas Press Club 2014

Saturday, 7 March 2020

New Secretary General of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States sets out ambitious roadmap for his tenure



ACP Secretary General Georges Chikoti



New Secretary General of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States sets out ambitious roadmap for his tenure


Veteran Angolan diplomat Georges Rebelo Pinto Chikoti took up his position as the new Secretary-General of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States in Brussels on 2 March 2020. In an upbeat speech to ambassadors from ACP countries and partner organisations on his first day in office, Mr Chikoti said that he had a plan for his first 100 days in office.

During a press briefing on 3 March at the Brussels Press Club, Secretary-General Chikoti unveiled his priorities as he takes the helm of the organisation comprising  48 countries from Sub-Saharan Africa, 16 from the Caribbean and 15 from the Pacific that are signatories to the Georgetown Agreement of 1975, the founding ACP instrument. He told reporters that high on his agenda will be the implementation of decisions from the 9th ACP Summit held in Nairobi last December. These include the change of the name of the organisation which will be known as the Organisation of African, Caribbean and Pacific States (OACP), the focus on multilateralism and the expansion of the ACP-European Union partnership.

The new ACP Secretary General will also have a leading role in steering on-going negotiations with the European Union to replace the Cotonou Agreement which expires this year. Mr. Chikoti expects the process to achieve a fair and balanced new agreement, through a singular negotiating framework, to be completed soon and the new accord signed by end of the year.

Climate change will be another area of interest for Secretary-General Chikoti who plans to visit island nations and those affected hurricanes such as The Bahamas, while urging strong commitment from big nations in this regard.

Mr Chikoti, who spent over 30 years in his country’s diplomatic service and was Angola’s envoy to Belgium, Luxembourg and European Union before his ACP appointment, spoke of his commitment to raising the profile of ACP. He promised to work with- and support- media, including the ACP Press Clubs Federation currently chaired by the Kigali Press Club.

Tuesday, 3 March 2020

Bahamas Press Club Stages 2019 Awards Ceremony


“Media in the Digital Age”
Bahamas Press Club Stages 2019 Awards Ceremony

NASSAU, The Bahamas - The Bahamas Press Club held its Fifth Annual Media Awards Ceremony themed: “Media in The Digital Age”, in Black Tie fashion at the British Colonial Hilton on Saturday, February 29, 2020.

The awards ceremony was held under the Patronage of Their Excellencies The Most Honourable Cornelius A. Smith, ON, Governor-General of The Commonwealth of The Bahamas and Mrs. Clara Smith.

The evening attracted many who laid the foundation for a thriving media profession in the country. There was entertainment by Solo, lots of gifts and prizes.

Anthony Capron, President of The Bahamas Press Club 2014, underscored that “from the beginning of time and through the ages, the central message has not changed. What has changed, overtime, is the method by which that message is brought to the public.”

Communication has transitioned from rock paintings of zigzag lines, dots, and symbols during the Stone Age, to this current era of new communication technologies. Now, stories can be typed and transmitted; photographs taken and sent; newspapers read; radio listened to; and television watched from one medium alone: a smartphone, Capron described.

A Blue Ribbon Panel of judges spent record-breaking hours reviewing the works submitted by the media in various categories including hard news, sports, features, business, politics, investigative, columns, documentaries and social media. The work must have been printed or aired between November 2018 and August 16, 2019. The deadline for submission was August 17, 2019.
The Press Club selected for the Trail Blazer Award, the Rt Hon Hubert Alexander Ingraham, Former Prime Minister, for establishing the framework private broadcasting and Cable TV, throughout The Bahamas.

And, the top honour for the evening – The Etienne Dupuch Lifetime Achievement Award, the recipient was journalist and diplomat Ed Bethel who began his journalistic career in 1959 at the Nassau Tribune under the tutelage of Sir Etienne Dupuch and Sir Arthur Foulkes. He went on to join ZNS as a sports editor in 1963, and spend many years there, worked at JCN and other news agencies; a stint a Bahamas Information Services as its Executive Director and served as Consul General to New York and as High Commissioner to the Court of St. James’s, London, and Ambassador to the European Union. He is also a former President of The Bahamas Press Club.

SEE BELOW, THE LIST OF CATEGORIES AND WINNERS:


1 - Leon Turnquest Award for Sports Print Journalism -
WINNER - Simba French – Sports Reporter, The Nassau Guardian

2 – The Phil Smith Award for Outstanding Sports Broadcast Journalism
WINNER: Jay Phillipe, Sports Reporter, ZNS (Northern Station)

The Kenneth Nathaniel Francis Award for Newspaper Design and Composition – WINNER: Whiteley McKinney, Page Designer, The Tribune

4 – The P. Anthony White Columnist of the Year
WINNER: Rogan Smith – Columnist  

5 - The Leslie Higgs Feature Writer of the Year
WINNER: Jeffarah Gibson – Features Writer, The Tribune

6 - The Cyril Stevenson Award for Outstanding Political Journalism
WINNER:  Genea Noel-Ferguson – Editor, Eyewitness News

7 – Best Documentary, Television (Long: 30 minutes to 1 hour)
WINNER: Clint Watson – Editor/Producer, Eyewitness News

8 - Best Documentary, Television (Short: 5 minutes to 30 minutes)
WINNER: Kenton Hepburn  - Digital Communications Officer, and Office of the Prime Minister.

9 – Best News Story, Broadcast
WINNER: Apryl Sands, Reporter, Eyewitness News

10 – Best News Story, Print
WINNER: Nico P Scavella, Reporter, The Tribune

11 – Best Business Story, Print or Broadcast
WINNER: Deandre Williamson, Reporter/Editor, Jones Communications Network

12 – Best Editing for Television News Story or Documentary
WINNER: Shamiko Gilbert, Eyewitness News

13 – Best Producer Award, Studio Live
WINNER: Genea Noel –Ferguson, Editor, Eyewitness News

14 – Best Producer Award, Live to Tape
WINNER: Shanaye Smith, Communications Officer, Office of the Prime Minister

15 – Website of the Year
WINNER:  ZNS (Gina Bethel)

16 – Social Media Award
WINNER: Eyewitness News, Eyewitness News Facebook Page

17 - Best Cinematography (Documentary)
WINNER: Kenton Hepburn, Digital Communications Officer, Office of the Prime Minister

18 – Best Video Editing
WINNER: Keesha Bethell, ZNS

19 – Best Newscast
WINNER: ZNS Northern Station 

20 – The Bahamas Press Club Student Media Award
WINNER: Anneisha Jones, University of the Bahamas Media Journalism School

21 – PAHO-WHO Excellence in Health Promotion Award
WINNER: Tosheena Robinson-Blair, Publicist & Freelance News Anchor  


Usually hosted in November of each year, The Bahamas Press Club 2014’s 2019 Awards Ceremony was postponed by Hurricane Dorian. As preparations for the November 2020 ceremony begin, The Bahamas Press Club 2014 looks forward to a continued outward expression of resilience- from members of the media and, overall, The Commonwealth of The Bahamas.

Journalist and Diplomat Edison “Ed” Bethel received The Etienne Dupuch Lifetime Achievement Award. 

Jour

Wednesday, 6 March 2019

EU Demands Money Laundering Convictions

Note: Broadcast journalist Deandrè Williamson represented The Bahamas Press Club 2014 at the 7th World Conference Against Death Penalty, which was held in Brussels from February 26 to March 1st, 2019. Miss Williamson is a former ZNS news reporter, and a former editor and reporter at  JCN. See below, her report from the historic Conference:



EU Demands Money Laundering Convictions
The Bahamas ‘Stubborn’ with Global Financial Obligations

Deandre Williamson
Journal Staff Writer


BRUSSELS, BELGIUM – European Union Member of Parliament Sven Giegold called The Bahamas a “stubborn case” as he insisted that the country must carry out money laundering convictions before the nation can be considered for removal from the European Union’s blacklist.

“According to the figures I have, there are no convictions on The Bahamas because of money laundering,” Giegold, who was in Germany, said during an exclusive Skype interview with The Bahama Journal in Brussels, Belgium.

Last month, The Bahamas was blacklisted by the European Union and labeled as a high risk jurisdiction for financial crime.  However, the EU wants action from The Bahamas, which includes enforcing the financial services laws.

According to Giegold, all large financial sectors, like The Bahamas, have money laundering problems and there are globally agreed standards which are violated by fraudsters and people who have money to hide.

“If in certain jurisdictions, although it has a larger financial place, a larger financial center, and nobody is convicted, that is a clear sign that your regime doesn’t deliver,” Giegold said.  “That is the reason why The Bahamas was seen as a country that has not solved all the problems and this is not about destroying anyone’s business.”

Giegold, who is also the coordinator on the Economic and Monetary Affairs Committee for European Parliament’s Greens Group, pointed out that The Bahamas’ position in the international debate was that the government would fight crime, not money laundering.

 “The position of your government was we will fight drug dealers, we will fight corruption, we will fight trafficking humans and so on, but we will not go after money laundering,” Giegold said, adding that “this is why there is a basically zero positive track record in The Bahamas.”
“This is exactly what is a very unfortunate position because fighting the money coming from crime is one of the most promising levers to fight crime.  So it is not enough to say we fight the original criminality.  We also have to try best to fight dirty money, so that the incentive to do crime is reduced because if you cannot use the money you make with crime, you’ll be less inclined to become criminal. 
“This is the reason why there is this global standard and The Bahamas have to show that you are cleaning up your financial sector and convict the fraudsters and close the accounts of those who have dubious track records of where they got the money from.”

The EU’s decision to blacklist The Bahamas was based on an evaluation by the Financial Action Task Force and an additional evaluation by the EU. 

An analysis was made which indicates that The Bahamas has a number of deficiencies in areas such as criminalization and convictions, customer due diligence in the financial sector, customer due diligence in the nonfinancial sector, powers of competent authorities, sanctions, international cooperation, beneficial ownership information, and targeted financial sanctions.

“The Bahamas is a particular stubborn case and that is the result of the evaluation that has been done,” Giegold said.
Earlier this year, Prime Minister Dr. Hubert Minnis and Attorney General Carl Bethel met with members of the European Union in Brussels, Belgium about the country’s involvement in international financial markets. 

According to Giegold, solving the issues behind the analysis is more important than Bahamian politicians visiting Europe for meetings.  

 “For this, we don’t need meetings in Europe,” he said.  “We want to see convictions and effective cooperation.”
Following the EU’s decision to blacklist The Bahamas, Bethel told the Senate that the government has addressed the concerns of the EU which involves the criminalization of money laundering and terrorist financing by implementing the Proceeds of Crime Act (since 1996) and the Anti-Terrorism Act 2018.

Also, Bethel said the customer due diligence and record keeping requirements were addressed in the Financial Transactions Reporting Act 2018, and its predecessor law with the same name, since 2000.

But according to Giegold, passing laws isn’t sufficient, and he explained that The Bahamas must also demonstrate to the public and global community that laws are not only passed, but applied rigorously.

“This means people who have broken rules such as due diligence, have opened offshore companies for criminal people, that they have to come to justice and the respective financial institutions lose their licenses.  There must be real consequences of these laws and then you are credible,” he said, adding that there are also other measures that must be taken before The Bahamas is clean.

Giegold, who is also an economist with specialization in financial crimes, hopes The Bahamas would work cooperatively with the EU because the EU has no intentions of destroying the country’s financial services sector.  He said the EU just wants The Bahamas to conduct business in accordance with globally agreed rules.

“Our subject is that you are a part of a global financial system, an important financial center, and at the same time do not respect the rules which go with open capital accounts.  That is the basis,” he said.” Our cup of tea is, there are global rules and they have to be enforced regardless who is in government.”


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For further information contact: Secretary Lindsay Thompson at (242) 434-5643. Email:thebahamaspressclub@gmail.com.
Website: www.bahamaspressclub.org

Sven Giegold, Member of European Parliament


Sunday, 3 March 2019

ECPM Urges Bahamian Govt to Abolish Death Penalty


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

March 3, 2019

Note: Broadcast journalist Deandrè Williamson represented The Bahamas Press Club 2014 at the 7th World Conference Against Death Penalty, which was held in Brussels from February 26 to March 1st, 2019. Miss Williamson is a former ZNS news reporter, and a reporter at JCN. See below, her report from the historic Conference:


ECPM Urges Bahamian Govt to Abolish Death Penalty
‘Fake Solidarity Hinders Caribbean on Death Penalty Abolition’

Deandre Williamson
Journal Staff Writer

BRUSSELS, BELGIUM – Together Against the Death Penalty (ECPM) Executive Director Raphael Chenuil-Hazan urged the Bahamian government abolish the death penalty and break away from what he calls the “fake solidarity” that seems to be preventing The Bahamas and other English-speaking Caribbean countries from becoming abolitionist states.

Chenuil-Hazan made this plea to the government during an interview with The Bahama Journal at the 7th World Congress Against the Death Penalty in Brussels, Belgium where he expressed concerns over The Bahamas keeping the death penalty as law and not using it.  

Other English-speaking Caribbean countries do the same and Chenuil-Hazan considers this practice as a bad example.

“It’s kind of shaming and I don’t like shaming,” he said. “But it’s a reality of original solidarity.  I think that some countries in the Caribbean should stop this fake regional solidarity.”

ECPM is a French nongovernmental organization with a mission to abolish the death penalty worldwide.

Although The Bahamas is identified by Amnesty International as one of the 52 retentionist states around the world where the death penalty is implemented, The Bahamas has a de facto moratorium on the death penalty. 

The last execution took place in The Bahamas in 2000 when Bahamian national David Mitchell was hanged after being convicted for the murders of two German tourists.  Mitchell had an appeal pending before the Inter-American Court of Human Rights at the time of his execution.

However, the imposition of the death penalty in The Bahamas is no longer mandatory following a Judicial Committee of the Privy Council’s decision in a case, which ruled that judges can exercise discretion and should sentence only “the worst of the worst” and the “rarest of the rare” to death.

According to Chenuil-Hazan, breaking away from the “fake solidarity” would lead The Bahamas to a formal moratorium on the death penalty. 

He suggested that The Bahamas embrace the United Nations General Assembly Moratorium Resolution and not continuously follow other Caribbean countries by voting against it.

“The Bahamas should vote,” Chenuil-Hazan said.  “It’s normal.  It’s logical.  Dominica should vote in favour, but they don’t just because of this strange solidarity.  You should go beyond and have your own identity based on your own situation.”
In a report released by the Advocates for Human Rights, The Greater Caribbean for Life, and The World Coalition against the Death Penalty, The Bahamas has voted against every United Nations General Assembly Moratorium Resolution and up until 2012, The Bahamas also signed the Note Verbale of Dissociation from the resolution each year.

If The Bahamas receives a formal moratorium on the death penalty, the country would be globally recognized as a state with a moratorium on executions. 

Amnesty International identifies countries with formal moratoriums as states or territories where the death penalty is implemented, but no executions have been carried out for at least 10 years and which did not oppose the latest United Nations Resolution for a universal moratorium on executions.

In addition, Chenuil-Hazan also suggested that the government should begin to shape the public’s opinion so that Bahamians who are in favour of the death penalty would understand that the death penalty is not a deterrent to crime.

Using China as an example, Chenuil-Hazan explained that thousands of Chinese are executed each year, but there is no decrease in China’s crime rate.

“So when you execute hundreds and thousands of people every year, you take the risk of becoming a dictatorship and break the rule of law,” he explained.  “Do you want to be in a democracy with rule of law or in a dictatorship with hundreds and hundreds of killings?”

The ECPM director added that the government should have a strong willingness to educate Bahamians so that public opinion would change and Bahamians would understand that ending the death penalty is a part of entering a new world that has been embraced by countries in South America, Europe and Africa.

While abolishing the death penalty may be complicated for some to understand, applying it increases crime, according to Chenuil-Hazan.

“Applying the death penalty would bring violence, state violence,” Chenuil-Hazan said.  “The death penalty is a violence, when you kill someone.  It is a violence and it is a symbolic state violence.”

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For further information contact: Secretary Lindsay Thompson at (242) 434-5643. Email:thebahamaspressclub@gmail.com.
Website: www.bahamaspressclub.org


Bahamas Press Club Member, broadcast journalist Deandrè Williamson attended the 7th World Conference Against Death Penalty, in Brussels from February 26 to March 1st, 2019. She is pictured at the European Parliament interviewing ECPM Executive Director, Raphael Chenuil-Hazan.



Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Press Club Member Attends 7th World Congress Against the Death Penalty


February 27, 2019

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
 
Bahamian broadcast journalist Deandre Williamson is representing The Bahamas Press Club 2014, at the 7th World Conference Against Death Penalty, in Brussels from February 26 to March 1st, 2019. She is pictured at the European Parliament.


Press Club Member attends World Congress Against the Death Penalty in Brussels

NASSAU, The Bahamas – The Bahamas Press Club 2014 is pleased to announced that one of its members, broadcast journalist Deandre Williamson will be among media professionals at the 7th World Conference Against Death Penalty, which will be held in Brussels from February 26 to March 1st, 2019.

Miss Williamson is a former ZNS news reporter, and a former editor and reporter for The Bahama Journal newspaper/JCN. And according to Press Club President Anthony Capron, her presence at the Conference means a proud moment for the organization and the country.

"We in The Bahamas Press Club 2014 are extremely proud of our member Deandre Williamson who is currently in Brussels attending the 7th World Congress Against the Death Penalty,” Mr. Capron reaffirmed.

“With the wide views that will undoubtedly emanate from this universal coalition, Deandrè should be better equipped and prepared to deal with the pros and cons in any discussion about the death penalty."

The Bahamas Press Club was invited to send representation to the Conference because it is a charter member of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Press Clubs Federation (ACP-PCF), founded in October 2016 in Kigali, Rwanda. The Bahamas Press Club was represented by then President Anthony Newbold, who was appointed Vice President and a member of the Executive Council of the newly-formed African Caribbean & Pacific Press Clubs Federation.
The coordination and support of the ACP-PCF activities is presently based in Brussels.

The ACP-PCF aims to establish a network of national press clubs or press centres, working in collaboration to strengthen the viability and professionalism of media bodies in ACP regions, and to foster intra-ACP communication, cooperation, and networking with similar international bodies around the world. PACP-PCF’s also seeks to create greater awareness of the basic features of the ACP-EU Partnership and build links between ACP and EU countries to facilitate and encourage the exchange of expertise and experience; and raising public awareness of key development issues, including post-Cotonou relations.

The Official Opening Ceremony of the 7th World Congress Against the Death Penalty was held in the European Parliament in Brussels on 27 February.

The event organized by the Ensemble Contre La Peine De Mort - Together Against the Death Penalty, which is the world’s leading abolitionist affair and is expected to bring together many stakeholders from over 140 countries.
Miss Williamson will be able to report on the dialogues and discussions emanating from the sessions, and expand her knowledge about the abolition of the death penalty in various countries.
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For further information contact: Secretary Lindsay Thompson at (242) 434-5643. Email:thebahamaspressclub@gmail.com.
Website: www.bahamaspressclub.org