Wyclef Jean talks to WILLEM MARX about the music, the money and the messages behind his new album Wyclef was on stage, running through some tracks at an industry showcase for his new album, The Preacher’s Son. Mixing in some seamless free-styling in 6 different languages (including Japanese) and playing his guitar riffs with his teeth, as if kissing the strings, the idea of interviewing the man was slightly daunting. Despite his astounding virtuosity, he remains in many ways an enigma. Catching up with him after the show, it was difficult to reconcile the man sporting an enormous platinum and diamond dollar-sign chain round his neck and mobbed by an incessant stream of adoring female fans, with the god-fearing, family-loving son a Haitian preacher, who moved to Brooklyn’s projects before his son had reached his teens. The title of his new album is far from irrelevant; many of the songs carry a message. ‘Industry’ is about the violent perception of the hip-hop world; Wyclef hopes to change the “higher authority’s thinking” on the subject. ‘Next Generation’ contains a powerfully simple message in lyrics such as “We are the next generation, not afraid to die / All we fear is what’s waiting in the Afterlife / Coz I don’t know what is there on the other side.” Explaining the thinking behind the lines, Wyclef talks of trying to “document” a “generation who are merely a reflection of their own environment,” when I quiz him on the references to guns and crack throughout his songs. Another example of Wyclef’s “preaching” comes in a track entitled ‘Party to Damascus’, an awesome fusion of oriental melody and hip-hop rhythm. The song suggests that the best solution to the many current problems in the Middle East is, as Wyclef succinctly puts it, “rather than fighting they should be having one big party.” He “understands the streets” and believes that artists such as himself are “poets expressing what they are.” I ask about his incredibly diverse range of influences which spans Latin to gangsta rap as well as his collaborations with and sampling of stars from Pink Floyd and U2’s The Edge to Missy Elliot and Mick Jagger. His response is typically straightforward, “I’m just taking these sounds from all around the world and taking the music to another level – going back to the culture and the idea of song-writing.” His desire to return to basics, using the Compra rhythm of his birthplace Haiti as part of the hip-hop framework which he grew up alongside in New York has led, he claims, “to a greater focus on melody”. He no longer “just concentrates on the rhyming, but the music.” Wyclef is very proud of his roots, and believes that a tolerant attitude to diversity, a sense of multiculturalism, is typically dependent upon your own upbringing. “Coming from Brooklyn, everybody to me had to look like this certain group of people, but as I grew and learnt, I realised that wasn’t the case.” Looking relaxed in his baggy jeans and red sweatshirt, he advises that we all “learn to appreciate human beings, actually all types of people from around the world.” But it’s difficult to connect such statements with his current existence: the suite at the Metropolitan Hotel on Park Lane, the fancy cars (he claims he has “over 50 very fine motor vehicles”), and the constant references to vast sums of money which hint at a slightly less balanced perspective. Such observations, however, fade into insignificance when he performs. His presence is electric, and he obviously enjoys himself immensely when up on stage. Not rated as an MC in the same class as say, 50 Cent, whom he places in his top ten “most respected artists,” it is nevertheless mesmerising to see him crafting words out of nothing, improvising on a theme, indeed reacting to what is going on around him as he lyricises. Wyclef’s linguistic diversity is equally fascinating; he was brought up speaking Haitian creole, which despite persisting popular opinion, is not a form of pidgin English, but a totally separate language. Bearing this in mind when experiencing the fluency of his English rhyming, and also witnessing the ease with which he switches to Spanish, and the enjoyment he takes from changing again into French or German, while still keeping time, making sense, and fully rhyming, his “ear,” both musical and linguistic, is highly impressive. Santana also makes it into his top ten, in fact in the top spot, and ‘Clef’s skills on the guitar, while perhaps not quite good enough to rival his hero, (who he claims demonstrates that “if you stick to your own act, you are bound to break through”), are definitely a large part of his self-defined position as a “musician and now a song -writer”. As he states in an earlier album, Masqueradeˆ, protesting against critics who had claimed he had forgotten his hip-hop roots, his “mistress is a guitar, classical like Mozart”. One of the most significant aspects of this album is its producer, Clive Davis. After the move from Sony to BMG, he was a pillar of support following the death of Wyclef’s father two years ago, and a strong influence on the vocal aspect of his music. Davis says that the album is a “watershed.” To see such a fine artist, “raising his game” as Wyclef would have it, intending to improve the world’s lot, while considerably enriching himself in the process, should be applauded, even if the message is preached. Wyclef would like to extend his sincerest apologise to Oxford students for postponing his visit to the Oxford Union. However he will be addressing students in November. He will also be playing a live acoustic set, so keep an eye out for the event by checking the website (www.oxford-union.org).ARCHIVE: 1st Week MT2003
The production of a sequel to a film relies on the success of the one that came before it, and this success can depend on anything from special effects to the actors cast. So what happens when a studio wants a sequel but an actor wants out? If the company is lucky, they’ll have got their stars to sign at least a three-picture deal, keeping them chained to the project whether they like it or not. Lacking this foresight, they are forced to consider a tactic which can make or break the entire film: recasting. Unusually, two of this year’s biggest sequels have been hampered by this problem, with Katie Holmes’s character Rachel Dawes in Batman Begins replaced by Maggie Gyllenhaal, and Rachel Weisz handing Evelyn ‘Evie’ O’Connell, the part that made her famous in the Mummy films, to Maria Bello. Whilst replacing Holmes is rumoured to have been more the director’s choice than her own, Weisz cited scheduling conflicts: movie nerds everywhere await with bated breath to see if the American Bello can pull off the role and, of course, the accent. Recasting is certainly a prominent feature in some of the summer’s most eagerly anticipated cinematic events, but it’s nothing new, and while the success of The Dark Knight hardly depends on Gyllenhaal, pulling off a flawless recast is sometimes a lot more important. When Jodie Foster declined to step back into Clarice Starling’s shoes for 2001’s Hannibal, Julianne Moore beat a host of major stars for the role. Critics and fans were satisfied (if a little underwhelmed), and Hollywood could sleep easy in the knowledge that they had made the right choice. Unfortunately, not all choices are chased up by a similar success story: poor casting can scupper an entire franchise. Kate Bosworth as Lois Lane in Superman Returns is one of the most universally derided recasting choices in history, and fans were left yearning for the spunky self-sufficiency characterised by both Margot Kidder and Teri Hatcher, women who made Lois Lane more than a love interest. If rumours of Superman: Man of Steel are true, then recasting is inevitable. For some films, of course, novelty is exactly what people want. A new Bond, Batman or Doctor Who can breath new life into each series following stagnation, ageing (see Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson in Starsky and Hutch) or, in the cases of Richard Harris or Heath Ledger, untimely death. A fresh face can be the kiss of life to a tired formula, but it can also hammer the final nail into the coffin of a decaying concept. Sadly for the studios, it’s impossible to know what your new face will do with a role potentially loved by millions. So if Maria Bello fails to capture the essence of Evelyn, then perhaps it is time to finally allow The Mummy to rest in peace.
For the 27th year, the annual Community Christmas Celebration Dinner will offer a free buffet dinner with all the trimmings to anybody who needs it.The buffet dinner takes place 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Christmas Day (Dec. 25) at St. Peter’s United Methodist Church at Eighth Street and Central Avenue.Volunteers will even deliver a meal to those who are unable to attend the dinner. St. Peter’s has access for the disabled and free parking.“For the past 26 years, my family and our community have been running a free Christmas dinner buffet on Christmas Day,” Halley Martinez write on the Facebook event page for the dinner. “With the help and generosity of our community, St. Peters Church, and nearby towns we were are able to provide 700-1,000 meals every year. This dinner is open to anyone, young, old, rich, poor, those in need or in need of giving. Everyone is invited!”Her parents, Mike and Peaches Lukens, started the event when they realized how blessed their young family was at Christmas time when others were in need.But the event has thrived over the years only with the time and generosity of many in the community. Here’s how you can help:Share the event on Facebook.Donate Food. Cooked turkeys or hams of any size can be dropped off at St. Peters on Dec. 23 between 10 a.m. and 6 p.m.Donate funds. Checks can be made out to “Christian Community Circle” and mailed to 300 Central Ave, Ocean City, NJ 08226.Donate gifts. New or gently used clothing, toys, books or household items can be dropped off at St. Peters on Dec. 23. Volunteer. Help is needed from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Dec. 23. Volunteers will assist with food preperation and setting up the dining room. Volunteers will also be needed on Christmas day to run deliveries, clean up, help in the kitchen, serve in the buffet line, and pack to-go dinners. Singers and piano players are also welcome to volunteer.
Last week, a most interesting programme appeared on television, dealing with ‘the teenage problem’.What, in fact, is the problem of the teenage boy and girl today? I feel that in many ways it is a problem of “What shall we do with our lives?” Much is heard of the “teddy” boy who dresses up in fancy clothes and many of us wonder why he does this. Well, this programme gave part of the answer. It appears this is done for the sole purpose of attraction of the opposite sex.It is a case of wrong living and lack of moral fibre, but in many cases the parents are to blame.Not all youngsters are the same. John is a boy of 17 years of age. He will cycle eight miles to work with me in the bakery, in any weather. That is ambition and he will, in time, become a very useful member of our industry.
It’s been a long time since the last new Jamiroquai music was released; 2010’s Rock Dust Light Star. However, all of that is changing, as the funky group has not only confirmed plans for the release of a new album, but they shared its title track earlier today.The band is set to release Automaton on March 31st, and with it comes an exciting new futuristic funk sound. Certainly inspired by Daft Punk, the band’s first single is an otherworldly display of groove, and it comes with an equally futuristic new music video.Watch the new Jamiroquai video for “Automaton,” streaming below.The band has also shared a full tracklisting for their new release, which you can see below. Pre-orders are going on as well, and can be found here.Automaton Tracklisting1. Shake It On2. Automaton3. Cloud 94. Superfresh5. Hot Property6. Something About You7. Summer Girl8. Nights Out in the Jungle9. Dr Buzz10. We Can Do It11. Vitamin12. Carla
The Notre Dame Forum kicked off its panel series “A More Perfect Union: The Future of America’s Democracy” last night at Leighton Concert Hall at DeBartolo Performing Arts Center. The forum aims to challenge the Notre Dame community to reflect on ways to bring positive change to the American democratic system and find solutions to the nation’s most pressing problems. Fr. John Jenkins welcomed the crowd and said he hoped the forum would help leaders discuss today’s political and religious challenges. “It is indisputable in the history of the U.S. that religious faith has been an extremely important factor to help this nation be vibrant and strong and creative,” Jenkins said. The panel was titled “Conviction & Compromise: Being a Person of Faith in a Liberal Democracy.” One of the moderators, political science professor David Campbell, the founding director of the Rooney Center for the Study of American Democracy, said it was a good time to be airing these topics at Notre Dame. “It is a truly historic event because tonight we will model what it means for Notre Dame to be ‘Catholic’ and ‘catholic,’ in both cases … because we brought together leaders of many American religions,” Campbell said. M. Cathleen Kaveny, the John P. Murphy Foundation law professor at Notre Dame Law School and theology professor, opened with a question for each panelist about how their religious role guided their politics. Dallin Oaks, a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of the Church of Jesus of Latter-day Saints (LDS), said that while the Church of LDS encouraged church members to participate politically, it did not endorse any political party, platform or candidate. “On very special occasions, we take a position on a public issue that has important moral implications,” Oaks said. He also said that religious unity would preserve religious freedom. “We must … [ensure] our ability to act out and exercise what we have in common,” Oaks said. Rev. Joseph Kurtz, the archbishop of Louisville and vice president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, said he and the other bishops sought to educate people in a rational but passionate way. Kurtz said it was a moral obligation to seek the common good. “Faith is citizenship,” he said. “The work that we’re about is the lifelong formation of our conscience … [which] is the most important exercise you will do in your lifetime.” Kurtz said certain moral issues carry more heft than others. “The taking of innocent life will always be an issue that is intrinsically evil,” he said. “We don’t endorse candidates or coerce voters, [we want you] to inform your conscience.” Kurtz said religious freedom is something to cherish because it fosters reasonable and effective discussion. “[Religious freedom] is in the fabric of how a nation deepens its moral character,” he said. David Saperstein, representative for the Reform Jewish Movement to Congress, said social justice was the focus of all types of Judaism. “At the center is a passion for the perfection of the world,” he said. “Jews are to be a light to the nations, fulfilling the charge to be a prophetic witness.” Saperstein said America’s freedom of religion allowed all faiths to flourish. “Every human being has basic equality,” he said. “[A person’s] rights as an individual are not dependent on [their] religious identity. … America is an extraordinary country.” Rev. Richard Cizik, president of the New Evangelical Partnership for the Common Good, said that after working on his ministry for 28 years, he was asked to resign from the National Association of Evangelicals after a radio interview on NPR. “I said I voted for Obama in the Virginia primary,” he said. “I support civil unions, [and] the religious right had a conniption fit. It was deeply hurtful.” After he left the association, he formed the New Evangelical Partnership with 100 other top evangelical leaders. “We agreed to see and think more clearly, care more deeply about this country and where it’s going,” he said. “[We are] assuming responsibility for the polarization which we have contributed to.” Rick Warren, pastor at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, Calif., and author of the book, “The Purpose Driven Life,” said the key issue was civility. “We live in a pluralistic society where no one wins all the time,” he said. “Jesus said, ‘My kingdom is not in this world.’ … I don’t place all my faith in the government to change.” Warren said that although he knew every president since Carter, he never offered policy advice. “If I thought I could change the human heart through politics, I would be a politician,” he said. “No law is going to turn a bigot into a lover. [Law] can change behavior, but not attitudes.” Warren said he believed in the separation of church and state, but not the separation of faith and politics. “We are moving away from freedom of religion to freedom of worship,” he said. “You’re free to do what ever you want during that hour at Mass, but it involves more than just the service. Jesus was a preacher, teacher and a healer – one-third of his ministry was health care.” Saperstein said voters should never endure coercion. “If you have to ask for forgiveness for the way you voted in the voting booth, [like] Catholics withholding communion, you have one narrow exception in balancing [freedom of choice],” he said. Kurtz said coercion had to do with how people act in public, while a personal relationship to a faith community was a choice. “As a Catholic I desire to be formed by the moral teachings,” he said. When the panelists discussed political candidates’ faith, Warren said he focused on electing a president, not a pastor. “I want him to have presidential skills, [and be] competent to lead,” he said. Kurtz said he took into account a candidate’s public virtue. “[I want him to be] willing to be courageous,” he said. “But the quality of the character of that person often flows with religion.” Oaks said he would support a person for public office if they felt answerable to a higher power. “Integrity is how the person adheres to their belief,” he said. Oaks said political candidates should be able speak about their religion because it reveals their personality. “How can you understand Mitt Romney or Joe Lieberman without understanding the role religion played in them?” he said. “The U.S. inches closer to a truly inclusive society. We’re not there yet, but we’ve made enormous strides.” The panelists talked about how those who are more religious are more likely to be involved politically. “Those without belief cause me concern,” Oaks said. “[They are a] threat to free exercise of religion because they do not value [religious] expression or participation.” The panelists also touched on the HHS mandate and its effect on moral principles. “[It is the] fundamental rights of women to have access to healthcare,” Oaks said. “[We need to] find a reasonable compromise that embodies core principles that both sides can live with without giving up a central principle.” Cizik said he did not believe the mandate violated religious liberty enough to pose a problem. “I am not persuaded that … the public good is so minimal,” he said. “[It is] sufficient enough to balance.” Kurtz said that political and religious figures had to carefully analyze the mandate to find that balance. “We have to find what is required in order to maintain the public good,” he said. “[The mandate] is restricting our religion.”
Bar works to find foster kids real families September 15, 2004 Jan Pudlow Associate Editor Regular News Bar works to find foster kids real families Associate Editor They are not cute cuddly babies with good chances of being adopted.They are what children’s advocates call “special needs kids.” Perhaps they have several brothers and sisters. Maybe they’ve struggled in school because of learning disabilities. They might have had run-ins with the law and wound up in delinquency court. They could have chronic medical problems. Some are teenagers.There are more than 3,000 such children in Florida, and what they have in common is that their mom and dad have had their parental rights terminated, and they are stuck in foster care hoping to become part of a real family someday.In a unique, budding partnership between The Florida Bar and the Department of Children and Families, the goal is to work together to find people willing to adopt such special needs children and give them permanent homes — sooner than later.The idea is still in the conceptual stages and will eventually be launched with one or two pilot projects called “From Foster Care to Family Care.”“Our goal is to look at the barriers we have, remove them, and put these children in adoptive homes,” DCF General Counsel Josie Tamayo told the Bar’s Legal Needs of Children Committee, in introducing the project in June.“It’s about moving children into adoptive homes and assisting us in recruiting homes. You all, as professionals in the community, can assist us.”The way the laws are written, the state doesn’t make a good parent, Kent Spuhler, executive director of Florida Legal Services, told the group.“You can only be a parent when the child is harmed. And you’ve got to quit being a parent when the child turns 18. That doesn’t work,” Spuhler said.Instead of lawyers and DCF officials blaming each other, Spuhler said, the primary focus would be on the child who needs a home. Then, perhaps, the historical friction between lawyers and DCF could become secondary, he said.“I am hopeful, but it’s been difficult,” Spuhler said two months later in August, after several meetings with DCF officials and Bar members.“From the lawyers’ side, they said it well could involve a lot of things that are not strictly lawyer work. Yes, you have to take an expansive view of being a lawyer for this child. The goal is for the child to be in a family, and we will give you support services around that,” Spuhler said. “It’s just a shorter, smaller client, with a clear goal.”From DCF’s perspective, Spuhler said, “They often feel shell-shocked. Inviting lawyers into their inner circle makes them a little nervous. A lot is working things out to feel comfortable.”That doesn’t mean lawyers who sign on for this adoption project have to stop being lawyers, Spuhler said.“We are not asking lawyers to put blinders on. If a lawyer uncovers a current problem with the department, we are developing specific protocol whereby that lawyer will get direct and immediate access to top staff in the department,” Spuhler said.“We all have a commitment to rectify the situation. We are trying to say: If it’s a problem with the department, we want to first make the effort to jointly resolve it, with both of us making a commitment that if it is hindering adoption, we will do everything we can to remove it,” he explained.“If it is uncovering a past issue of the department, and it is no longer impacting the child, all we say to the lawyer or law firm is: Remember the child’s first goal —to get adopted.”The status of the project awaits DCF officials to select two pilot project sites, and then planning can begin in earnest, Spuhler said.Deborah Schroth, a legal services lawyer and children’s advocate working on the project, said with a sigh: “Everything at DCF moves glacially slowly.”Later that August 30 day, DCF Secretary Jerry Regier, who was expected to select the pilot sites, resigned his position.But Schroth said she believes in the concept and sees the need.“From my work on behalf of children, I know for a fact that there are many barriers for kids being adopted that need to be resolved,” Schroth said.The impetus for the project was sparked when Regier spoke at the Bar’s Midyear Meeting in Miami in January and challenged lawyers to help him carry out adoptions. In turn, lawyers, including Schroth, challenged Regier to help them get past animosities and allow them to represent children.Then Bar President Miles McGrane became interested in the project and will help guide it through logistical hurdles as the new chair of the Bar’s Legal Needs of Children Committee.“I would like to start a pilot in Dade County, because we will be the first part of DCF to be out-sourced,” McGrane said August 31.“My hope is between now and the spring, we can get the pilot up, get our plans lined up, get the role of the attorneys defined, and start recruiting lawyers.”McGrane noted that whether children in dependency cases should have a guardian ad litem or attorney ad litem or a combination of the two has raged for years. (The Bar’s Commission on the Legal Needs of Children, the predecessor to the standing committee that McGrane now chairs, recommended in its final report in June 2002 that children shall be appointed a lawyer in cases where parental rights are terminated “unless the court determines that the legal interests of the child are otherwise being protected.”)“I listened to Chief Justice Barbara Pariente at the passing of the gavel ceremony, and she spoke eloquently about the Unified Family Court and she used the term ‘holistic attorney.’ It has no definition yet,” McGrane said.“What I am trying to do is get PILS and the Family Law Section to get this concept of a holistic attorney in this pilot project.”What lawyers involved in the project will essentially do, McGrane said, is facilitate the adoption of these special needs children. And what that means will differ from case to case.The concept, Spuhler agrees, is that a lawyer or a law firm will “identify a child and make a commitment to do whatever it took to get that child adopted.”Lawyers will help identify potential adoptive parents, explain the benefits and challenges of adopting the child, and work at resolving any impediments standing in the way — whether it’s resolving a delinquency matter or making sure a child’s special educational needs are addressed.As Spuhler earlier told the lawyers gathered at the Legal Needs of Children Committee in June: “Lawyers are problem-solvers. We want lawyers and law firms to be problem-solvers. Here is the child. Your goal is to put the child in a good home. Here is a support system we have built for you. Take that goal on.” Legal Needs of Children Committee enters into unique partnership with DCF
Sep 17, 2004 (CIDRAP News) – California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has vetoed a bill that would have required school boards to take formal action and provide detailed information to students and parents before serving any irradiated food in schools.In a brief veto message published on the governor’s office Web site, Schwarzenegger said the bill would impose needless costs on school districts.”While we always want to keep parents informed of a variety of issues, imposing the additional administrative duties proscribed [sic] in this bill would increase the cost on school districts by an estimated $5.3 million annually,” the governor stated. “Since information concerning irradiated food is already available from a variety of sources, these funds would be better spent in the classroom.”The bill, introduced by Assembly Member Loni Hancock, D-Berkeley, was prompted by the US Department of Agriculture’s (USDA’s) move to offer irradiated ground beef to schools participating in the National School Lunch Program. The bill was officially sponsored by Public Citizen, a group that opposes food irradiation.The measure would have required school boards to take formal action before allowing the serving of irradiated food. In its final form, the bill also would have required schools to inform students and parents of the purpose of irradiation and its effects on the nutritional value of food, provide them with “objective” and “balanced” scientific information on irradiation, and require that irradiated food items be labeled as such.Armando Viramontes, a spokesman for Hancock, told CIDRAP News, “The idea was to require informed choices. . . . We felt that parents needed full information when they make choices about what their kids eat.” He said many schools now provide menu information on their Web sites, and schools could use the same means to inform students and parents about food irradiation.The bill passed the California Senate Aug 24 on a 21-16 vote and passed the Assembly the next day by 42-35, according to information on the California Legislature Web site.Viramontes said an override of the governor’s veto is highly unlikely, since no legislation has drawn the two-thirds majority needed to override a veto in California since 1980.Rather than try for an override now, Hancock will probably join with supporters of another nutrition-related bill that drew a Schwarzenegger veto this year in efforts to change his mind, Viramontes said. “We want to see the governor rethink these bills next year,” he said.As originally introduced last February, the Hancock bill would have barred the California Department of Education from receiving any irradiated ground beef from the USDA for distribution to schools. The original bill also would have required schools serving irradiated food to give parents information about alleged “potential adverse health consequences of irradiated foods” and to provide other menu choices. But those measures were dropped from the final bill.Irradiation of raw meat and poultry to destroy pathogenic bacteria was approved by the Food and Drug Administration in 1997, and the USDA followed suit in 1999. Other foods for which irradiation is approved include fruits and vegetables, seeds, herbs and seasonings, eggs, and wheat. The process has been endorsed by numerous health and medical organizations, including the American Medical Association, the World Health Organization, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The national COVID-19 task force has secured a 5-hectare plot of land in Bangka Belitung Islands for the construction of the country’s third COVID-19 hospital.“The hospital building might only need 1 hectare, but there are 5 hectares of land available to the west of Ir Soekarno General Hospital,” Bangka Belitung Islands COVID-19 task force chief Armayani Rusli said on Wednesday, as quoted by kompas.com.He said the construction of the hospital would commence in July and was expected to be completed in one month. The hospital will be a one-story building comprising service rooms and patient rooms. A total of 100 beds will be provided, with 25 beds for intensive care and 75 beds for mild cases.“In the future, the facility can be used for the treatment of infectious diseases or infections other than COVID-19,” said Armayani.The Bangka Belitung Islands COVID-19 Hospital is the third project by the central government after the COVID-19 hospital in Galang Island, Riau Islands and the one facility that is currently under construction in Lamongan regency, East Java.Bangka Belitung Islands has recorded 121 confirmed COVID-19 cases as of Tuesday, with one death and 41 recoveries. (aly)Topics :
Sharing is caring! LifestyleLocalNews OECS Governments Reminded of Financial Obligations to Court by: – January 14, 2020 76 Views no discussions Share Share Share Tweet Chief Justice, Her Ladyship Dame Janice M. Pereira, DBEEastern Caribbean governments have been called to attend to the financial needs of its courts.On Monday, January 13th, the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court commenced the new Law Year 2020/2021 with its ceremonial opening in the form of special sitting of the court in Dominica and other OECS territories.This year’s ceremony was held under the theme, “A New Era for the Caribbean Supreme Court: The Road to Achieving Court Excellence”.At the formal sitting held at the High Court, Chief Justice, Her Ladyship, Dame Janice Pereira lamented that the Caribbean court lacks capital and human resource.“Every year since I have been Chief Justice and I have had the opportunity to address you in this forum I have sung the same refrain. Indeed, chief justices before me have done the same. I have implored our governments to do their parts to provide suitable and adequate court facilities and to fulfill their mandates to the judicial branch of Government, after all it is a co-equal branch of government. It is time to stop making promises but instead fulfill them. It is time that attention be paid to the courts and the indispensable functions they perform rather than the treatment endured year after year after year as if the courts are a nuisance afterthought,” Pereira stated.While discussions and some introductory work has been seen to the establish a trust fund for the court, Her Ladyship reminds governments of the need to construct fitting structures to house the court.She adds that procrastination will not erase the issue.“You, the people deserve proper court facilities which are accessible to all, not only the rich but the poor, the old, the young, the able and the disabled. The courts in Grenada were unusable for most of last year, so too, were the criminal courts in St. Lucia for the most of 2018. While these courts facilities have only now reopened, they’re certainly only another bandage upon a festering wound.”Her ladyship lamented further, “As I speak, this ceremonial opening of the law year in St. Lucia is taking place in a building outside of the court’s facilities, due to a lack of adequate physical accommodation.”She also advised that procrastination will not deter the issue of cost for its construction, reminding that,”the cost of constructing proper facilities is often lamented but the fact is that delays won’t make it cheaper, just more costly.”The Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) was established in 1967 by the West Indies Associated States Supreme Court Order No. 223 of 1987. The ECSC is a superior court of record for the Organization of the Eastern Caribbean States (OECS), including six independent states: Antigua and Barbuda, the Commonwealth of Dominica, Grenada, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and three British Overseas Territories (Anguilla, British Virgin Islands and Montserrat).It has unlimited jurisdiction in each member State.