May 25, 2010
A breathe of change is still sweeping across the Caribbean as preliminary results show that Former Attorney General Kamla Persad-Bissessar is poised to be the new Prime Minister of the twin island Republic of Trinidad & Tobago after taking some 27 of 41 seats.
The tough-talk leader Persad-Bissessar, who only four months ago became leader of the United National Congress (UNC), have created history by becoming the first female Prime Minister of the twin island Republic after leading a five-party coalition to unseated the Peoples National Movement (PNM) Patrick Manning who was seeking re-election.
Manning who called a snap elections midway in the five-year term of his administration to thwart an opposition motion of no-confidence in him, in a speech to supports said he took full responsibility for what happen.
Suriname votes Tuesday
Surinamese go to the polls today in a general election that’s likely to end up in another coalition arrangement.
There are 51 seats at stake.
Opinion polls are giving an opposition alliance called the Mega Combination, headed by former military strongman Desi Bouterse, the edge in Tuesday’s election.
Mega Combination is seeking to dethrone the governing New Front coalition that’s led by President Ronald Venetiaan, who won’t be seeking the presidency this time around.
Call for Duvalier’s return
Some supporters the former Haitian dictator, Jean-Claude Duvalier, have been calling for the ousted ruler to return and participate in post-earthquake presidential elections.
Over the weekend about 200 people marched through the suburb of Petionville – one of Mr Duvalier’s former support bases.
Haitian leaders are currently struggling to hold scheduled elections on time with the help of the UN and OAS.
President Rene Preval has said he will remain in office up to three extra months past the end of his term next year if a new leader is not chosen by 28 November.
More BA strikes
Travellers from London to the Caribbean and elsewhere could face flight disruptions in the coming days, as British Airways cabin crew began a five-day strike Monday, over pay and working conditions.
This week’s walkout follows a breakdown in talks over the weekend between the airline and the workers’ union, Unite.
The union is demanding that BA restore employee travel benefits, which the company suspended following a similar strike earlier this year but BA says it will only negotiate through mediators.
The Unite union has called another two rounds of five-day strikes, with just a day’s pause in between.
BA says it will operate more than 60% of long haul flights from London’s largest airport, Heathrow.
The airline also expects all flights and Gatwick and London City airports to operate as normal.
Cuba’s political prisoners
A well known Cuban dissident says authorities there have agreed to improve conditions for political prisoners and move sick inmates to hospital.
Guillermo Farinas, who’s been on hunger strike to demand the release of sick prisoners, said the commitment followed a meeting between officials in Havana and representatives of the Catholic Church.
There’s been no word from the Raul Castro government, but a church official, who asked not to be named, has confirmed the account.
President Castro held a rare meeting with church leaders last week.