President Medina recognizes 13 women
Danilo issues a dare on Odebrecht money
A second go-around in remodeling of the Palacio de Bellas Artes?
Greater Santo Domingo faces blackouts
ADARS studies proposals from CMD
Further attempts to clean up the Ozama and Isabela
PUCMM alerts imports up, exports stagnated
North Coast and Santiago big winners of Santo Domingo carnival
Cooler temperatures should continue
Dominican Republic plays Canada in World Baseball Classic
Nicole Santiago sings on Thursday in the Colonial City
Bachata to be discussed at Centro Leon music congress



President Medina recognizes 13 women
The Dominican government, in the person of President Danilo Medina, recognized the contributions of 13 women as part of the celebration of the International Women’s Day at the Caryatids Hall in the Presidential Palace on Wednesday, 8 March 2017. The women were from all walks of life including medicine, sports, politics, community development, art and education. They were awarded the Medal of Merit. 

The women were selected by the Ministry of Women with participation from education and civil society organizations, including churches, NGOs and universities. 

The honorees were presented to President Medina by Minister of Women’s Affairs, Janet Camilo. These were:
Dolly Nin Cavallo and the late Magaly Caram (health), María Cándida Sánchez Mora (political participation), Wanda Rijo and Audrey Arelis Puello Pérez (sports), Xiomara Fortuna and the late Sonia Silvestre (arts), María Paquita Castillo (community leadership), Diana Mejía (community work abroad), Esclarecida Núñez Almonte (education), Rosario Graciano de los Santos (professional women), Felícita Heredia Lorenzo (science and technology) and Miriam Cabral (political leadership). 
https://presidencia.gob.do/noticias/...acto-memorable


Danilo issues a dare on Odebrecht money
President Danilo Medina told reporters yesterday afternoon that “a lot of people” want to see him “swimming in the mud.” He stated that Joao Santana’s services for the 2012 and 2016 electoral campaigns had been “paid by us.” He denied a Brazilian news story in which a former Odebrecht official had said Odebrecht had financed his election campaign, along with that of four other countries -- El Salvador, Angola, Venezuela, Panamá and Brasil. Joao Santana was the leading advisor of the election campaign of Medina. He was convicted and sentenced to eight years in prison for corruption. 

After the media note appeared in the Dominican Republic, a note from the Joao Santana office and spokesman Fabio Tofic of the law firm that represents him in the legal process in Brazil was received. This stated: “In the name of my client, Joao Santana, I publicly declare that there was no payment from the company Norberto Odebrecht, nor any other Brazilian group, for the services of marketing and advertising of the campaigns for President Danilo Medina”. 

Joao Santana was the lead marketing advisor for Medina in the presidential elections of 2012 and 2016. He was in the peak days of the Medina re-election campaign in 2016 when he cut his advisory work short and returned to Brazil to face corruption charges. 

Medina dared anyone to prove that his campaign was financed by Odebrecht or any other Brazilian company. He stressed: “The investigations will conclude in Brazil and the Dominican Republic and the truth will come forth. Wait, do not despair that the truth will come out,” he told the press. 

http://eldia.com.do/joao-santana-nie...danilo-medina/
http://elnacional.com.do/danilo-nieg...ra-su-campana/
http://www.listindiario.com/la-repub...n-lo-contrario
https://www.metrord.do/do/santo-domi...-justicia.html


A second go-around in remodeling of the Palacio de Bellas Artes?
Culture Minister Pedro Verges and the Office of Supervising Engineers of State Projects (OISOE) director Francisco Pagan have agreed to the immediate start on the remodeling of five buildings that belong to the Ministry of Culture and are among the priorities of the institution. These are the Conservatorio Nacional de Música and the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Santo Domingo. There will also be work carried out at the music academy in San Cristóbal, the Historical Archives in Santiago and the Cultural House in Hato Mayor. 

The remodeling includes changes of furnishings, repairs to roofs and structures, as needed. 

In 2008, investigative journalist, Alicia Ortega, turned a spotlight on irregularities at the billion peso remodeling of the Palacio de Bellas Artes by a predecessor of Pagan at the OISOE. Taxpayers contributed a staggering total of RD$1,330.4 million for that remodeling project. At the time, the cost of RD$600,000 per parking space in the underground parking garage built during the remodeling was considered scandalous. The works were carried out under the supervision of Felix Bautista. Despite the remarkable depth and extent of the scandal, no corruption charges were brought against any government official. 

http://nuevo.z101digital.com/articul...ica-01-11-2017
http://www.diariolibre.com/revista/c...cion-LE5969409


Greater Santo Domingo faces blackouts
The have been an unusual number of rolling blackouts in Villa Daurte and Los Tres Ojos and other eastern areas served by EdeEste in Greater Santo Domingo. Even areas that are part of the 24 hour-service program have been affected by the unusually unstable electrical service.

The blackouts are a headache for the residents and small businesses in the affected areas. Oscar Gonzalez, a merchant in the sector of Invivienda, said: “The electricity service is no good and no matter how much we complain they don’t resolve the issues. Yesterday, we spent the whole day without electricity.” 

EdeEste attributed the frequent interruptions of service experienced in East Santo Domingo to maintenance work being carried out on the transmission lines. In West Santo Domingo residents in Las Caobas, Bayona, Enbombe, Manoguayabo and los Alcarrizos complained about how little electricity they were receiving. This area is served by EdeSur.

There have not been reports of unusual blackouts in central Santo Domingo, also served by EdeSur. 


ADARS studies proposals from CMD
The president of the Dominican Association of Health Risk Administrators (ADARS), the local equivalent of HMOs, said on Wednesday, 8 March 2017 that they were evaluating the proposal made by the Dominican Medical Association (CMD) and the Dominican Association of Private Clinics (Adeclip) aimed at including more services in the network of health providers, as reported in 7 Dias. 

Manuel Vargas, the ADARS president, said that on 21 March, they will be meeting with doctors to respond to their demands.  He observed that there some issues highlighted by the ARSs represented by ADARS can only be addressed by the Superintendence of Labor Health and Risks (Sisalril). He said: “The reality is that the fees are set by the Social Security Council and we [ADARS] must comply with policies and regulations established by the Social Security Council. 

This is the first time that the CMD takes a lead in representing interests of physicians that work in the private sector. The CMD has usually championed interests of public sector physicians. Private sector physicians and clinics are protesting that the ARSs are making it difficult for patients to choose their health providers and are limiting insurance coverage for standard procedures.  


Further attempts to clean up the Ozama and Isabela
The Waste Free Oceans Foundation (WFO) and the Dominican Association of Community Foundations for Environmental Health through Recycling (Afunsarec) signed an agreement to collaborate in a project called “The Ozama – Isabela Watershed Source of Life.” The goal of the project is to clean-up the lower basins of both Ozama and Isabela rivers. 

The president of the WFO, Inge Demyttenare explained that part of the clean-up strategy involves collecting the solid waste so it can be recycled and later placed in international markets. The agreement calls for an assessment of the present condition of the Ozama and Isabela rivers. Funds for the US$3 million effort will be sought both locally as well as abroad. 

http://www.diariolibre.com/noticias/...bela-BY6515434


PUCMM alerts imports up, exports stagnated
A report from the PUCMM Dominican Development Studies Program (PED) reveals that Dominican imports for the second quarter of 2016 increased US$1.05 billion, or 16.2% compared to the same period in 2015. Meanwhile, exports only increased 6.4%. The statistics are compiled by the International Trade Barometer (BCI).  

Newsletter 3 of the BCI indicates that “in the third quarter of 2016 exports were US$2,347.7 million, a 4.3% increase compared to the April-June 2016 quarter and a relative variation of 6.4% compared to the July-September 2015 quarter. 

During the third quarter of 2016 imports were US$5,781.7 million, up 16.2% compared to the same quarter for the previous year. Imports increased US$1,049.9 million compared to the second quarter of 2017, or 22.2%.” 

The coordinator of the program is Fernando I. Ferrán. 

The Dominican Republic Trade Balance showed a deficit of US$3,433.9 million, up US$953.6 million compared to the April-June 2016 quarter. The significant increase in imports and only slight increase in exports contributed to the deficit. 

The newsletter says that consumer goods make up 44% of all imported goods in the third quarter of 2016.  

https://www.pucmm.edu.do/investigaci...Septiembre.pdf
http://www.eldinero.com.do/37995/un-...s-dominicanas/


North Coast and Santiago big winners of Santo Domingo carnival
The Ministry of Culture announced that the carnival dance group, Los Carnamares from Río San Juan, on the North Coast, is the winner of the RD$1 million cash award for Best Carnival Group. The group participated in the National Carnival 2017 Parade in Santo Domingo on 5 March 2017 and competed with groups from all around the country. 

The judges included cultural experts Virginia Roca, Luis Mateo Dicló, Jorge Güigni, Francisco Vásquez, Pedro Julio Quezada, Carlos Andújar, Julia Castillo, Francisco Medina, Radhamés Polanco, Marinella Saillent, Héctor Luis Martínez, Manuel Guillén, Luis Rafael Javier and Gladys Martínez. 

In addition to the RD$1 million prize for overall best dance group, a number of dance groups took home awards in a number of different categories. These were: Best Provincial group: Carnaval barriga verde, San Juan de la Maguana (first place); “Tres culturas. Un disfraz–Taimáscaros,” Puerto Plata; and “Santiago en Carnaval”, Santiago. The winners won cash prizes of RD$200,000, RD$100,000 and RD$50,000.

Best Sectorial Production awards went to: 
First place “Dulce domingo de feria #68”, Distrito Nacional; second place, “Unión de Villa Consuelo. Dioses guardianes del Olimpo y el imperio de Malí”, Distrito Nacional; and third place to “Migración de las aves al mejor carnaval del mundo en busca de la paz mundial”, Santo Domingo East. The winners won cash prizes of RD$200,000, RD$100,000 and RD$50,000.

Individual Character awards went to: 
First place “Hamlet y sus fantasías”, Distrito Nacional; second place to “Mantis en fantasía”, Distrito Nacional; third place, “Musa paradisíaca-La Platanera”, Puerto Plata. The winners won cash prizes of RD$60,000, RD$35,000 and RD$20,000.

Best Masks: 
First place, Pablo de los Santos, Santiago de los Caballeros, won a cash prize of RD$50,000; second place went to Luisfry Martínez, of Navarrete, Santiago with RD$25,000; and third place to Leo Castillo, Santiago de los Caballeros, with RD$15,000 cash prize. 

Special prizes were awarded to: 
The dance group “Florilegio de una cultura carnavalesca. El florecimiento del papel, el plátano y la chispa multicolor”, from Cotuí, won a special prize and RD$125,000 in cash.


Cooler temperatures should continue
The National Weather Service (Onamet) informs us that the greater part of the national territory will continue to enjoy the mild temperatures with cooling winds and scattered showers throughout the day, especially in the northeast and east of the country. 

For the last few days, the country has enjoyed lower temperatures as cool breezes from the Atlantic dropped temperatures to 17°C in Puerto Plata and a down-right chilly 12°C in Constanza. Santo Domingo enjoyed temperatures in the 20°C range and many cities are enjoying what Dominicans will call “sweater” whether. Yesterday morning in Valle Nuevo in the Central Mountains a temperature of 6°C was recorded. 

According to weather forecaster Francisco Holguin, these cooler temperatures should continue for the next few days. 

http://www.onamet.gov.do/?param=pronostico-general


Dominican Republic plays Canada in World Baseball Classic
Defending World Baseball Classic champion, the Dominican national baseball team opens today, 9 March 2017 against Team Canada. The championship is in its 4th edition. The Dominican Republic is playing in Pool C that opens today at Marlins Park in Miami. Others in the pool are United States and Colombia. 

Team Dominican Republic includes a strong Dominican lineup that features Jose Bautista, Robinson Cano, Adrian Beltre, Nelson Cruz among other MLB stars. 

Team manager Tony Peña has announced the opening players for the starter game are: Wellington Castillo (catcher), Carlos Martínez (pitcher), Carlos Santana (first base), Robinson Canó (second base), José Bautista (right field), Starling Marte (central field), Gregory Polanco (left field), Manny Machado (shortstop), Adrian Beltré (third base). 

Follow the series at:
https://www.worldbaseballclassic.com/bracket
http://www.diariolibre.com/deportes/...sico-AF6520389
https://www.metrord.do/do/deportes/2...-bates-rd.html


Nicole Santiago sings on Thursday in the Colonial City
As part of the Jazz Nights in the Colonial City, Nicole Santiago and her quintet will be performing on the steps of Calle El Conde on Thursday, 9 March 2017, starting at 8pm. The singer is accompanied by guitarists Gioel Martin and Joel Pacheco, Samuel Atisol on keyboards, Andy Villalona drums and Rocío Damirón, base. 
Their music is a mix of jazz, Brazilian music, Afro-Dominican beats, chill out and soul. The performance is free, but to get a seat on the steps, it is recommended that you head to the area before 7pm. 

María del Mar Quartet will be next performer for the Jazz Nights in the Colonial City, on Thursday, 23 March. She will be performing works by Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holliday and Nina Simone, among others. 

On Thursday, 30 March, Sabrina Estepan & Estandarizados will delight audiences with their renditions of Autumn Leaves, How High The Moon, Night and Day, Lullaby of Birdland, Fly Me to the Moon, The Look of Love, Summertime, My Favorite Things, Feeling Good, among others. 


Bachata to be discussed at Centro Leon music congress
The Centro Leon announces the celebration of the bi-annual International Music, Identity and Culture in the Caribbean (MIC) Congress. The event is in its 7th version. This year the event will be 7, 8, 9 April 2017. To register, see http://www.centroleon.org

Music experts, sociologists, artists participate in talks, workshops and concerts this time focusing on bachata and stringed music instruments. In other years it has been dedicated to merengue, son, salsa, bolero, jazz, folklore music and other Caribbean genres. 



For information on upcoming events:
http://www.dr1.com/calendar


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