A Nervous Tuesday: That Virus, and an Earthquake


It started off as quite a normal Tuesday. I attended the launch and signing of the contract for a major health program – the Health Systems Strengthening Programme – at the Courtyard Marriott. I will provide more details in my next blog post; suffice it to say that it is the largest health infrastructure program … More A Nervous Tuesday: That Virus, and an Earthquake

JET Disappointed at Reversal of Ratification of Environmental Treaty by Jamaican Government


I posted the press release earlier this week from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, correcting an announcement that Jamaica had both signed and ratified the Escazú Agreement. In fact, Jamaica signed but has not yet ratified. This is the Jamaica Environment Trust’s response… The Jamaica Environment Trust (JET) notes the October 1 press … More JET Disappointed at Reversal of Ratification of Environmental Treaty by Jamaican Government

An Important Correction to the News Regarding the Escazú Agreement


Two days ago I wrote about Jamaica’s signing (and, as we thought, ratification) of the Escazú agreement at the United Nations – such a welcome development. Both the World Resources Institute and Jamaica Environment Trust issued statements welcoming the news. Unfortunately there was a technical error. In fact, the agreement was signed, but not ratified. … More An Important Correction to the News Regarding the Escazú Agreement

The International Seabed Authority, Greenpeace and Deep Sea Mining


Five years ago, I attended one of the annual meetings of the International Seabed Authority (ISA). It was their 20th-anniversary session. In case you did not know, this UN body is headquartered in Kingston, and meetings take place once a year at the Jamaica Conference Centre. At the time, I wrote about the crisis facing … More The International Seabed Authority, Greenpeace and Deep Sea Mining

Human Rights Day in Jamaica: Against a Background of the Arts, Much to Be Done


Human Rights Day this year was particularly significant for the world. We have to think “world” on Human Rights Day, and then get out our magnifying glasses and zoom in on a map of Jamaica and the Caribbean. For all of us, it was the 70th Anniversary of the signing of the Universal Declaration of … More Human Rights Day in Jamaica: Against a Background of the Arts, Much to Be Done

Reshuffling, Rousing Up and Reading Reports: Jamaica on April 2, 2018


It’s April 1, and I got fooled by one or two tweets today! Also, of course for those who celebrate it, it’s Easter Day. Large quantities of bun and cheese are being eaten, as I write. I am trying to catch up a little on the news, so here goes… Caribbean: Haitian photo-journalist Vladimir Legagneur disappeared on March … More Reshuffling, Rousing Up and Reading Reports: Jamaica on April 2, 2018

Jamaica Launches ACP Presidency Under Theme: Common Interests, Common Goals and Common Destiny


Jamaica will head the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States until July 31, 2018. This is a critical period for the grouping of 79 States, formed in 1975 through the Georgetown Agreement or “Cotonou Agreement,” which binds all members (except Cuba) to a Partnership with the European Union. It includes 48 countries from sub-Saharan … More Jamaica Launches ACP Presidency Under Theme: Common Interests, Common Goals and Common Destiny

A Bobsledder’s Tears, A Canadian’s Rant, and Mr. Jackson’s Blood Pressure: Wednesday, February 14, 2018


This week is all about “lerv” – as it’s Valentine’s Day (and the Ash Wednesday holiday) this week. I actually don’t celebrate either of these days, so am just enjoying the lovely weather and relatively quiet day in the city. There is not a lot of love floating around, however, as the legal profession (fraternity? … More A Bobsledder’s Tears, A Canadian’s Rant, and Mr. Jackson’s Blood Pressure: Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Director General of Japan’s Latin America and Caribbean Bureau Visits Minister Johnson Smith


I often mention the support given to Jamaica by the Japanese Government, because I like their focus and the projects that they choose to fund. So, here is a little overview about a diplomatic visit this week. I’m concerned about the coffee industry. I also did not know there were as many as 40 Japanese volunteers … More Director General of Japan’s Latin America and Caribbean Bureau Visits Minister Johnson Smith

Minister Kamina Johnson Smith’s Comments at Meeting of the China-CELAC Forum on January 22


This week, the Second Ministerial Meeting of the Forum of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and China took place in Santiago, Chile. Here is the Statement from our Minister of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade Senator Kamina Johnson Smith. From this, one notes that Jamaica is an enthusiastic supporter of the One … More Minister Kamina Johnson Smith’s Comments at Meeting of the China-CELAC Forum on January 22