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Thread: DR1 Daily News - Wednesday, 5 July 2017

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    Default DR1 Daily News - Wednesday, 5 July 2017

    President Medina caters to the military
    Higher court judges selection process begins
    Economy continues to grow
    Ministry of Labor: Construction needs to meet foreign worker limits
    Who is Claudia Franchesca de los Santos?
    Amet will make it easier to pay traffic tickets
    Ministry of Public Health shuts down esthetics center in Higuey
    Jobs scarce for Dominican medical graduates
    Doctors refute Health Director declarations
    Dominican cement company helps Jamaica
    Green March Movement goes international
    Weather front to bring rain
    Three dead in Monte Plata
    Vitelio Mejía elected president of Lidom
    Luisito Pie elected Athlete of the Year

    President Medina caters to the military
    On Tuesday 4 July 2017, President Danilo Medina inaugurated several government-sponsored housing projects, including a government retirement home that will cater to senior citizens and single and multiunit houses for members of the military.

    In addition, the President raffled off 208 free homes and announced salary increases for the 53,000 members of the Armed Forces. Lieutenant General Ruben Paulino Sem explained that the salary increase would amount to a 30% increase for privates and up to a 20% increase for sergeant majors and underlings. Majors, lieutenant commanders, lieutenant colonels and frigate captains will receive a 15% raise. Colonels and naval captains will have salary increases of 25%, while high officials and admirals will see their monthly paychecks increase by10%. Generals will make a base salary of RD$150,000 as of July 2017.

    Paulino went on to say that there would be incentives and adequate compensation packages for military service personnel, depending on the level of risk and quality of service. This means that a private who currently earns RD$7,000 a month could earn RD$16,072 a month and a naval captain or colonel would go from RD$23,500 a month to RS$41,371.

    Diario Libre highlights that now the wages of the military will be superior to those in the Police.

    Higher court judges selection process begins
    On Thursday, 6 July, the National Magistracy Council (CNM) will begin the evaluation of the 169 applicants to become judges of the Supreme Court (SCJ) and the Supreme Electoral Court (TSE). The meeting will be at the Presidential Palace and is scheduled to begin at 4 PM. Of the applicants 36 are applying for both positions, 102 for the TSE and 67 for the SCJ.

    Applicants aiming to be a TSE judge include Román Jáquez Liranzo, dean of the Law Faculty at the Catholic University of Santo Domingo, who is currently a supplementary judge at the court. Mariano Rodríguez, Mabel Feliz, Marino Mendoza and John Guiliani, who are currently TSE judges, wish to continue in their posts and Guiliani is also applying to go to the SCJ.

    The former president of the SCJ, Jorge Subero Isa and the secretary of the Economic and Social Council (CES), Iraima Capriles, were left off the list of candidates for the TSE as they do not meet the published requirements for the position.

    Others who did not qualify for consideration include Rafael Amando Vallejos Santelises, Luis Mora Guzmán, Isis Muñiz Almonte, Roberto Castillo María, Saulo Isabel Díaz, Evelyn Fermín Díaz, Amaury Pimentel, José Manuel Glass Gutiérrez, Ignacio Camacho, Pedro Sánchez Rivera, Bernabel Moricete and Julio Aníbal Suárez.

    Follow the process at:

    Economy continues to grow
    The Central Bank of the Dominican Republic has said that the Monthly Indicator of Economic Activity (IMAE) has shown an inter-annual increase of 5% resulting in an accumulated growth rate of 4.2% from January to May 2017 over the same period last year.

    The highest growth for the period was from the activities of hotels, bars and restaurants, transport and warehousing, financial intermediaries, insurance, agriculture, rental and sales of real estate and commerce and local manufacturing.

    Ministry of Labor: Construction needs to meet foreign worker limits
    The Ministry of Labor says that it has begun the process of reviewing the fulfillment of labor limitations that apply to foreign workers in the construction sector. The Labor Code in its Art. 135 establishes a maximum of 20% of foreign labor. In the construction industry, nevertheless, the reverse is more common, with more than 80% foreign labor common in any given construction project.

    The Ministry says that after regularizing this sector, they would proceed to review fulfillment in the tourism sector, and then in the farming sector. The revisions are part of the Strategic Plan of the Ministry of Labor.

    Who is Claudia Franchesca de los Santos?
    The recently appointed executive director of the new National Institute of Transit & Transport (Intrant), Claudia Franchesca de los Santos is a civil engineer who has been working at the Ministry of Public Works since 1992 when she entered as a calculations clerk. She graduated from the Instituto Tecnológico de Santo Domingo (Intec) engineering school in 1996. She had served as deputy minister at the Ministry of Public Works since 1996.

    De los Santos’ profile on LinkedIn indicates she is has been the owner of Constructora SAGO since 2011 and manager of GS Inmobiliaria.

    Her profile on the Intec university website indicates that from 1996 to 2000, while serving as deputy minister of the Ministry of Public Works, she was general manager of the project for the modernization of transit in Santo Domingo and Santiago; the construction of tunnels and overpasses of the 27 de Febrero, John F. Kennedy, Las Americas and Estrella Sadhala avenues, as well as the drainage tunnel of the Núnez de Cáceres Avenue.

    She served as spokesperson to the press for the Ministry of Public Works for several construction projects nationwide.
    She was responsible for the completion of the budget of the UASD university library. In 2006 she was project manager for the installations of the National Games in Yamasá and in 2007 for the Central Park in Santiago.

    De los Santos has been in charge of commissions responsible for preparing and updating construction rules in the country, seismological analysis and design of structures, fire, vertical circulation, wood and metallic structures, among other duties. She has served as advisor for instruction of the General Agency for Border Development, and has been in charge of the sub-commission of transport and infrastructure for the Dominican-Haitian Bilateral Commission.

    She also served as president of the board of directors of the Dominican Postal Institute, member of the board of Intec and vice president of the alumni association of Intec.

    She has also been director and editor of Construexpo magazine and has worked in several private construction projects.

    Intrant consolidates 14 Dominican government entities that deal with transit and transport. De los Santos is responsible for implementing Law 63-17 on Mobility, Ground Transport, Transit and Road Safety. The new law consolidates into the Intrant the following offices:
    Oficina Técnica del Transporte Terrestre (OTTT), Dirección General de Tránsito Terrestre (DGTT), Consejo para la Administración y Regulación de Taxis (CART), Caja de Pensiones y Jubilaciones para los Choferes del Transporte Público, Fondo de Desarrollo del Transporte Terrestre (Fondet), Autoridad Metropolitana del Transporte (AMET), Autoridad Metropolitana del Transporte de Santiago (Ametrasan), and the Dirección General de Seguridad de Tránsito y Transporte Terrestre (Digesett), among others.

    Amet will make it easier to pay traffic tickets
    The Metropolitan Transport Authority (AMET) says that an automated system will soon allow ticketed motorists to have their fines quickly processed and cleared shortly after the penalties are paid at BanReservas.

    AMET says they have been working on the system with the bank and the Attorney General’s Office. The new system will eliminate the more than 12 hours in time traffic violators at present need to spend to pay the fine and then get AMET to remove it from their system. AMET says they are just waiting for the Attorney General to make the announcement of the start of the new system. As reported recently, because of the red tape, only 10% of fines levied by AMET agents have been paid.

    Ministry of Public Health shuts down esthetics center in Higuey
    The Ministry of Public Health announced the temporary shutdown of the esthetics clinic Stetic Home by Janet Jaques in Higuey. The center is closed for being in violation with Art. 100 of the General Health Law 42-01.

    Dr. Mayra Altagracia Paula, provincial director for the Ministry of Public Health, said that clinics that carry out invasive procedures without authorization will be shut down. She said this applies to labs, dental centers and health centers that do not have certified staff. The Ministry has shut down nine centers this year for carrying out non-authorized procedures.

    The Dominican Society of Plastic Surgery (Sodocipre) recently congratulated the Ministry of Public Health for stepping up its inspections. The Society recommends potential patients to check out the credentials before undergoing esthetics procedures.

    Jobs scarce for Dominican medical graduates
    Dominican medical universities are turning out more physicians than there are jobs for them in the Dominican Republic, according to an investigative report in Diario Libre.

    “We are graduating more doctors than we can insert into the system. The number of students enrolled in the UASD Medicine School is more than you find in Argentina, a country with six times our population”, said Carolina de la Cruz Bassa, general director of medical residencies and post-graduate studies at the Ministry of Public Health. The UASD alone has 22,000 students registered in its Medical School and graduates around 2,000 physicians a year.

    Dr. Nelson Rodriguez Monegro, director of the National Health Service (SNS), says that the DR needs around 500 to 600 physicians a year. He said there are around 2,600 graduates of the past two years waiting for jobs to do a medical specialty.

    “Unfortunately the universities, because they are estranged from the working market, have become an industry of frustration for young professionals when these students finish their studies and cannot find jobs,” said Monegro. He said only a small number of physicians manage to leave the country to complete their preparation abroad.

    He said for the past three years, the SNS receives on average 2,626 requests when there are only 1,840 jobs available. In 2017, 3,801 new graduates competed for 1,025 positions in internal medicine, pediatrics, gynecology and obstetrics and general surgery.

    Centers offering medical studies in the Dominican Republic are the UASD, Universidad Pedro Henríquez Ureña (UNPHU), Universidad Iberoamericana, Instituto Tecnológico de Santo Domingo, Universidad Central del Este (San Pedro de Macorís), Universidad Católica Tecnológia del Cibao (Santiago), Pontificia Universidad Católic Madre y Maestra (Santiago), Universidad Tecnológica de Santiago, Universidad Católica Nordestana (San Francisco de Macorís).

    Doctors refute Health Director declarations
    The Dominican Medical Association (CMD) and the doctors at the La Altagracia Maternity Gospital accused the director of the National Health Service, Nelson Rodríguez Monegro, of covering-up the deficiencies in the health system and washing his hands of the problem, when he claimed the 14 deaths of the infants in the maternity were due to the grave health conditions of the babies, rather than to lack of proper equipment and facilities at the hospital.

    The doctors, accompanied by the CMD president, Waldo Ariel Suero, said that of course the newborns had some medical issues, however that most of the deaths were accelerated by the conditions they had to endure, such as four infants in one crib, which they qualified as inhuman. They reiterated that most of the deaths were due to the limitations and dangerous conditions at the hospital that has been under renovation for four years. The CMD is demanding the prompt completion of the renovations at the hospital.

    Diario Libre journalists nevertheless toured the Maternity and in the 5 July edition reported that medical services appeared normal at the hospital in the newborn unit. The reporters observed two babies in one crib, but when asked about it were told the two were twins.

    Dominican cement company helps Jamaica
    The Dominican cement factory, Domicem donated 5,000 bags of cement to assist in flood relief building efforts in Jamaica after several days of intense rains in that Caribbean nation. The donation was made through the Jamaican office of Domicem at an official ceremony at their local headquarters in Freeport, Montego Bay, Jamaica. The government of Jamaica highlighted the donation on their website.

    At the ceremony were Domicem’s Vice-President, Osvaldo Oller; State Minister, Office of the Prime Minister, Hon. Everald Warmington; and Minister of Tourism, Hon. Edmund Bartlett.
    Mr. Bartlett said the Dominican Republic and Jamaica have had a very special relationship over the years, and the gift is “simply a continuation of our friendship and willingness to look out for each other”.

    “Only recently, the Most Hon. Prime Minister, Andrew Holness, and I visited the Dominican Republic, where we met with President Danilo Medina and other private-sector interests to discuss tourism-related matters,” the Minister noted.

    For his part, Warmington said the country is grateful for the contribution, which will go a very long way in assisting to restore some of the infrastructure that was lost in the recent floods. It will also assist those who suffered losses, to start rebuilding, he added.

    “I will be going back to the Prime Minister with the details of the discussions we have been having with the Dominicans, and where we feel that they can have a much larger presence in Jamaica by way of investment,” he added.

    Green March Movement goes international
    On Sunday, 16 July 2017 the Green March Movement is preparing to simultaneously take their protest of corruption and impunity in the Dominican Republic to eight countries, in addition to holding a march in the capital of the country.

    Green March Movement organizers are calling for Odebrecht to shut operations and leave the country immediately. Odebrecht is the main contractor for the US$2 billion coal-fired thermoelectric under construction in Peravia province.

    The Green March Movement is asking for a complete list of those who allegedly took bribes from Odebrecht and that they be brought to justice and refund any bribes they took. The Attorney General has accused 14 persons of taking bribes after the Brazilian firm admitted to paying US$92 million in bribes in a New York City Court.

    The Green March Movement is organizing marches in 12 cities in the eight countries. The marches are:
    New York, starting at 11am on Broadway and 170th Street in Upper Manhattan;
    Boston, starting at 11am in front of Jackson Station;
    In Miami, starting at 11am on 8th Street and 27th Avenue in South West Miami to conclude in Juan Pablo Duarte Park;
    In Europe there will be marches in Spain, Germany, Italy, Holland and Switzerland. In Frankfurt the march will start between 3 and 5 pm beginning at the Dominican consulate; in Amsterdam it will start at 2 pm in front of the Royal Palace; in Geneva at 4 pm in front of the United Nations and in Madrid at 4pm in front of the Dominican Embassy.
    It is thought that there may also be marches in Canada and Barcelona but the time and place has not yet been confirmed.

    The 16 July Green March in Santo Domingo will start at the intersection of John F. Kennedy and Máximo Gómez avenue and parade down to the Centro de los Héroes where the Supreme Court and Attorney General offices are located.

    Weather front to bring rain
    According to the National Weather Service (Onamet), the humidity and instability of the weather is due to a front located in the northeast of the country that is likely to bring thunderstorms and rain to the provinces of La Altagracia (Higuey), El Seibo, Hato Mayor, San Pedro de Macorís, La Romana, Monte Plata, Sánchez Ramírez (Cotuí), Samaná, Hermanas Mirabal (Salcedo), Duarte (San Francisco de Macorís), María Trinidad Sánchez, La Vega, Monseñor Nouel (Bonao), San José de Ocoa, Santiago Rodriguez, Puerto Plata, Dajabón, Elías Piña, San Cristóbal and to Greater Santo Domingo.

    The humidity is expected to increase with the approach of a new tropical wave that will lead to more thunderstorms across most of the country but especially in the northeast, southeast, south west, central mountain area and the border area. Temperatures will continue to be high.

    Onamet have also warned that they are keeping an eye on a weather system around 1,200 km west south west of the Cabo Verde islands that has the potential to develop into a tropical storm over the next five days, although they say it will most likely not affect the Dominican Republic.

    Three dead in Monte Plata
    The head of the police station in Sabana Grande de Boyá in Monte Plata province has been killed together with a police corporal and a supposed criminal in an incident that took place around 100 meters from the police station on Duarte Street.

    The victims are second lieutenant Johnny de los Santos, aged 49 and in charge of the police station; Corporal Basilio Carmona Cabrera, 28, and a civilian only identified “Blanco”.

    General Máximo Báez Aybar, who is at the scene, said that there was a standoff between a police patrol and armed men in a car. The police had gone there due to the high level of noise coming from the car and arrested one, but when they returned to look for the other men, the occupants of the vehicle opened fire, killing the policemen and the civilian. The man who had been arrested escaped. The police are now looking for the men known as “Wily” and “Wilfri”.

    As well as Báez Aybar, also at the scene are prosecutors Félix Heredia and Marina Caraballo, along with a police contingent from the department of Criminal Investigations (DICRIM).

    Vitelio Mejía elected president of Lidom
    After 26 years of the rule of former president Leonardo Matos Berrido, the six Dominican Professional Winter Baseball League (Lidom) have voted for a change. The unanimous vote went in support for the lawyer Vitelio Mejía.

    He will start in the job on 11 July 2017. Mejía is at present vice president of Lidom. Berrido had been in the job since 1991 when he replaced Luis Ramón Cordero, as reported in Diario Libre.

    Luisito Pie elected Athlete of the Year
    The Dominican Olympic Committee (COD) chose the Dominican Republic’s only medallist in the Rio Olympic Games, 23-year old Luisito Pié as Athlete of the Year 2016. Pié competed in taekwondo and won the bronze medal in the 58 kg category.

    According to his biography in Wikipedia, the six-footer was born in Bayaguana, Monte Plata to the named Haitian José Beltré and Marisol Pié Desquile, but he was raised by his Dominican stepfather Euclides Reyes and his mother.

    The COD also named best athletes in the different sports:

    Badminton: Nairobi Jiménez
    Baseball: Edgar Figueroa
    Bowling: Héctor Simó
    Boxing: Leonel de los Santos
    Chess: José Lisandro Muñoz
    Fencing: Estibalys Valentín
    Gymnastics: Audris Nin Reyes
    Handball: Jhoanna Pimentel
    Karate: Jorge Junior Pérez
    Pentathlon: Gabriel Domínguez
    Racquetball: Ramón de León
    Rowing: Cristian Guerrero
    Sailing: Esneiry Pérez
    Shooting: Julio Dujarric
    Skating: Anthony Payano
    Softball: Pablo Figuereo Ortiz
    Swimming: Jhonny Pérez
    Taekwondo: Luisito Pié
    Triathlon: Kevin Thomas
    Weightlifting: Beatriz Pirón
    Wrestling: Jansel Miguel Pimentel
    Wushu: Elián Andújar
    Military Circle: William Medina
    Art: Franklin Domínguez
    Medicine: Luis Vergés
    Last edited by Dolores; 07-05-2017 at 10:49 AM.


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