Veteran dancehall deejay, Ninjaman, born Desmond Ballentine, and two co-accused, including the entertainer’s son, Janeil, were on Monday found guilty of the 2009 murder of Ricardo Johnson, also known as ‘Trooper’, in Olympic Garden, St Andrew. The verdict came in from a seven-member jury which was comprised of four men and three women, in the Home Circuit Court in downtown Kingston, following deliberations for over three hours. The Ballentynes and Dennis Clayton were tried for the murder of Johnson in the Marl Road area of Olympic Gardens. The lasted for over a month, during which the artiste fell ill, reportedly due to an emerging heart-related condition. In response to the verdict, Ninjaman simply said, "A suh it go man," on exiting the courtroom. The trial involved some seven witnesses, including one who testified that a group of men, led by Ninjaman with a gun, entered a yard on the day in question, and the deejay fired two shots at him while he fled the premises. However, Johnson, who was at the premises, was hit and later died from his injuries. The case had all of 17 missed trial dates and 23 mention dates over an eight-year span, and the trial finally got under way last month when Justice Martin Gayle revoked Ninjaman’s bail and ordered an immediate start to the proceedings. More details to come late.

Screenshot of viral video showing a mother brutally beating her child.

TheJamaican Child Protection and Family Services Agency (CPFSA)has confirmed the authenticity of a viral video in which a mother was seen violently beating her child over the weekend. The incident reportedly happened sometime in September in a rural community in Westmoreland. "We have located the mother and child, both are living in a community in Westmoreland. A team has spoken to members of the community and they are saying that this kind of behaviour is unlike the mother, she has never used this type of method to discipline the child who is about four or fiveyears old," Rochelle Dixon, public relations and communications manager at the CPFSA, told Loop Jamaica reporter Claude Mills on Monday morning. She said that the CPFSA has arranged to do a psychiatric evaluation and to do counselling sessions with the mother, and will conduct counselling sessions for the child as well. "The beating happened in September, and we are yet to get a full report from the social worker and investigator on the scene so we don't know about scars as yet, but the report should be done today. The question though is how do we change the culture of how parents discipline their children in Jamaica? How do we get them to understand the long term and short term effects of corporal punishment, and how it affects the social and mental well being of children," Dixon mused. The CPFSA is a merger of the Office of the Children's Registry (OCR) and the Child Development Agency. Jamaicans recoiled in horror on social media over the weekend in reaction to the video of the mother beating her young child for over six minutes and, at one point, even threatening to cut off her neck. “Wah mi tell yuh seh? Lef outta company lef outta company. A day time mi send you go school fi do yuh work; work mi send yuh go a school fi do. Mi will kill you. Yuh hear wah mi seh? Stay outta company,” the mother shouted, punctuating each sentence with a box to the face or jab to the forehead. Then she upped the ante by threatening to make the next beating worse. “Yuh naah go mek dem shoot mi...Next time a di buckle mi a use, stop ramp up with company, yu hear wah mi say? Mi nah tell yu again, ah the buckle part mi a go use..yu nah drop back sake a bad company, ah mi one...before yu drop back, mi wi go cut off yu neck,” she declared, continuing the assault even as the child writhed in agony on the ground. The police have since issued an appeal for the woman seen in the video beating the young child to turn herself in to the nearest police station. This latest video comes on the heels of a similar one in October which showed a St Thomas mother violently beating her 12-year-old daughter with a machete. The CPFSAhas also sent a team to StMary to talk to the family of the teenager who made a video complaining about being bullied before he committed suicide last week.

Local construction and design company, Encompass coped an award on November 13 at the USA & Americas property Awards 2017-2018. The company won the award, beating out over 200 other entries from across the USA and the Americas regions, for its Sun Serenity project- a stunning 7800 square foot beach villa on the sand beaches of Cayman Kai at Rum Point. The award which was presented at the Toronto Fairmont Royal York Hotel means that the construction company will be automatically be entered into the overall international awards, culminating in an awards ceremony which is to be held at the Savoy Hotel, London on December 4. The International Property Awards are open to residential and commercial property professionals from around the globe. They celebrate the highest levels of achievement by companies operating in all sectors of the property and real estate industry.

The Cayman Islands Small Business Association(CISBA) headquarters officially opened at the organization’s second annual general held on November 7. Speaking at the official opening of the headquarters, Minister for Commerce, Planning and Infrastructure, Joey Hew, noted that the his administration was dedicated to supporting small-to-medium enterprises, citing the recent government budget which includes funding to support the small and micro business sectors. Minister Hew noted that the government looks forward to reducing fees for this sector, as well as, cutting regulations and red tape. “Ours is a government that is keen to break down silos wherever they exist so we will also maintain dialogue with this association, the Chamber of Commerce and others, to ensure we are listening to your concerns and giving you the support you need to keep the wheels of our economy turning,” said Hew. Hew also used the opportunity to laud the association for holding a number of micro and small business workshops and mentoring sessions since government signed a memorandum of understanding with the body eight months ago. CISBA President Dawn McLean-Brady noted that milestones achieved by the association included hosting three well attended small business expos; facilitating 17 workshops; organising eight business mentoring sessions and launching their own website and Instagram page. The association is also set to make further stride to improve their visibility, with McLean-Brady noting that the association will soon begin writing a weekly column in a local newspaper. McLean-Brady further noted that the CISBA has partnered with government and the Chamber of Commerce to formulate a small business strategy for the Cayman Islands. “The aim is to collaboratively assess and draft a strategy to address business challenges to small and medium businesses,” she added. The CISBA President affirmed that other issues they would further dialogue with the Government include further customs fees reductions, greater financing for start-up businesses and the need for government programmes to reduce the turnover rate of small businesses, notably start-ups. Also in attendance at the opening were Chief Officer Alan Jones, Deputy Chief Officer Tamara Ebanks and other officials from the ministry. The headquarters, located on Mary Street in central George Town has been operational since June of 2017.

Recently a friend of mine expressed shock (and some amusement) with the tone/types of emails she received from one of her employees. Instead of being addressed as “Mrs. X” when she received e-mails from her team member, or even being addressed by her first name, her employee addressed her by an abbreviated version of her first name...(think of me being called ‘Mal’ instead of Malaika). Added to the name issue, emails included slangs like “ty” instead of “Thank You” and “LOL” for whatever was deemed amusing. My friend was confused about why her employee thought it appropriate to communicate with her like that, as she didn’t think it was acceptable, and she certainly wouldn’t communicate like that with her boss. After sharing the occurrence with me, my first question was to ask how old her employee was, and as I suspected she was a young woman in her early 20s, a member of what is popularly dubbed the ‘Millennial’ or ‘Gen Y’ generation. My friend on the other hand was older- a member of the ‘Gen X’ group. As we have all experienced, at some time or another- communication across different generations can bring with it interesting challenges. Whether we are new to the workforce, at the midpoint of our career or closer to retirement, we all have different ways of communicating with each other, and varying beliefs about what is “appropriate” communication. Often times however these beliefs conflict, and can lead to misunderstanding and annoyance. But it really doesn't have to be this way. The reality is that we have an increasing number of persons from different age groups working together, and we will therefore interact across different generational groups at work. The key is to ensure that we communicate well and get our message across successfully. The tips below should help us all to communicate effectively, whether we are Millennials, Baby Boomers or somewhere in between: - Set Guidelines: in your department, or on your respective teams establish what is “acceptable.” If you work in an informal environment and it is acceptable to use slangs and “broken English” then you may communicate in this manner. If however, you operate in a more formal environment, then ensure that you adhere to more formal communication guidelines. What is important is to ensure that communication guidelines are established, and to stick to them. - Use Different Methods of Communication: thanks to advances in technology, there are different ways to communicate…we can email, send a text message, use WhatsApp etc. With these options available, it’s ok to use any of these different methods of communication. Be guided however by organizational culture. If you work in a very formal culture, it may not be acceptable to send your boss a WhatsApp message- if this is the case, an email may be more appropriate. - Different Methods for Different Colleagues: In your department, you may have a team member who only communicates via email. Another colleague, might rely on Instant Messages, while you may actually find it easier to have a quick conversation face-to-face or by telephone. In situations like these, it may simply be easier to adjust your communication style for different team members. Changing your style to suit the recipient can feel burdensome, but if you can make adjustments for them (and they make adjustments for you) communication in the office may just get easier... Also, you may find that you get a response from your colleagues much sooner via instant messaging than email, and in our fast paced world, this is quite good! - Be Flexible…and speak up: if you do not like the communication method used by your colleague, try not to be annoyed (…yes, they could have just sent a message, and really didn’t have to call)…but, be flexible, your colleague is merely doing what s/he feel is appropriate. If you really don’t like it however, tell them and ask them to communicate with you using your preferred method. Good communication can make a big difference in how well we operate at work- it may serve us well therefore to get comfortable using different tools. What communication techniques do you use? Malaika T. Edwards is a Human Resources consultant and provides advisory services to individuals and business clients. She is also a PhD scholar at the Louisiana State University (LSU) where she specializes in Human Resources and Workforce Development. You can contact her at, or on LinkedIn at

In recognition of World Diabetes Day, free health screenings will be offered in the atrium of the Cayman Islands Hospital in George Town on Tuesday from 8:00 am- 2:00pm The screenings are offered as a result of a partnership between the Health Services Authority and the Lions Club of Tropical Gardens. Minister of Health, Dwayne Seymour, in showing his support for the initiative, urged Caymanians to pay attention to the information received from their healthcare professionals on the subject ofdiabetesand ways in which the serious illness can be prevented and controlled. “Whilediabetesis widespread amongst men in our community, I am pleased to have the spotlight shone on women for this particular occasion,” said Seymour. This year’s theme, “Women anddiabetes- Our right to a healthy future”, was chosen by the InternationalDiabetesFederation. “Diabetesis a widespread problem in the Caribbean, including here in the Cayman Islands, where the condition is often referred to as “sugar”,” added Seymour. Seymour noted that if left untreated, diabetes can cause serious complications such asblindness, cardiovascular disease, kidney failure leading to dialysis, and lower-limb amputation. Globally,diabetesis the ninth leading cause of death in women, causing 2.1 million deaths each year. One in 10 women are living with disease. Women withdiabeteshave more difficulty conceiving and may have poor pregnancy outcomes. Without pre-conception planning, type 1 and type 2diabetescan result in a significantly higher risk of maternal and child mortality and morbidity. “In light of this knowledge, all residents, women and men, are encouraged to be proactive and take advantage of the many health checks that are offered on the islands through health fairs and other community related activities,” said Seymour. “Each of us can also take steps to avoid developing diabetes, or to help control it if we already have the condition. Simple measures such as eating a healthy and balanced diet, as well as taking regular exercise, can make a big difference. It is also important to avoid tobacco products, alcohol and illegal drugs, “ added Seymour. Seymour further added that, “ I n years gone by, children in the Cayman Islands had very active lifestyles, but these days it is all too common to see them occupied on their phones, tablets or computer games.” Seymour used the opportunity to urge parents to ensure their sons and daughters incorporate physical activities into their play times, and take part in sports in their teenage years. “So while we focus on “sugar” for World Diabetes Day, let us remember that this is a condition we must be aware of all year round. Let’s focus on education, treatment and care for all,” Seymour added. A public education session on the topic of women anddiabetesin the Hibiscus Conference Room at the hospital, from 5.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. The scheduled speakers are consultant obstetrician, Dr. Gillian Evans-Belfonte,and pharmacist/diabeteseducator, Winsome Jefferson.


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