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Thread: DR1 Daily News - Thursday, 31 August 2017

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    Default DR1 Daily News - Thursday, 31 August 2017

    DR1 Daily News next update on Monday
    Haiti dream project: Will China make it happen?
    Economy slows down and first-half growth is 4%
    President appoints new Police director
    No fishing zones created for Samana
    It costs a little more than US$50 to deport a Haitian
    Senator says legislating is “tough work”
    Olé is not part of Grupo Ramos
    Naco Golf and Country Club property owners vs Club Deportivo Naco
    Blas Peralta seeks retrial of Aquino Febrillet murder
    High-level commission to investigate case of missing 16-year old
    Irma heads for the Caribbean
    DR loses to US in AmeriCup, qualifies for 2019 Pan Am Games
    Eddy Herrera at Casa de Teatro
    Milly Quezada and Miriam Cruz at the Hard Rock

    DR1 Daily News next update on Monday
    The next DR1 Daily News update will be published on Monday, 4 September 2017. The Monday issue will compile headline news for the previous Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Breaking news can be followed 24/7 in the Forums. See the Forum at

    Haiti dream project: Will China make it happen?
    Major works to renovate Port-au-Prince, Haiti are scheduled to begin in December 2017. The ambitious project encompasses the mega sum of US$30 billion that the People’s Republic of China would invest in Haiti as it extends its reach through the Caribbean and Central America. The proposed infrastructure works call for the installation of much needed modern hygiene, water, transport, energy, telecommunication, road and security systems in the Haitian capital city.

    Diario Libre points out that the renovation work would create around 20,000 jobs for Haitians in Haiti, boost social and economic development, and significantly reduce the pace of immigration to the Dominican Republic. The investment also creates more opportunities for the Dominican Republic to sell goods and services to Haiti.

    As reported in DR1 Daily News earlier this week, the Mayor of Port-au-Prince Ralph Youri Chevry has accepted the offer made by the Southwest Municipal Engineering Design and Research Institute (Sichuan) for a first phase of the project to start this fall. Diario Libre mentions that a first disbursement for the construction works would be made no later than 30 September 2017. The works would be carried out by the consortium Bati Ayiti, S.A., its partners and Southwest Municipal Engineering Research Institute of China.

    A mission from the People’s Republic of China was in Port-au-Prince for eight days of meetings that ended on Wednesday, 2 August. As reported in Haiti Libre online news service, these meetings also focused on the reconstruction of the main building of the Town Hall and the construction of several public markets in Port-au-Prince.

    Haiti Libre reported that Ralph Youri Chevy has confirmed his acceptance in principle of the offer by the People’s Republic of China government on the preliminary project of municipal renovation of Port-au-Prince. But that the letter “does not commit anything but makes it possible to make progress if necessary in the development of project”.

    Haiti Libre observes that there still is only “a general draft that contains proposals for water and drainage works, road improvements, environmental protection, drainage and sanitation, a communication network and the reconstruction of the old town of Port-au –Prince.” The initial infrastructure investment is estimated at US$4.711 billion, reports Haiti Libre, while observing that yet the terms and conditions of this financing are still unknown. This would be invested over an initial three to five years.

    Haiti Libre explains that the proposal has not yet officially been studied by the central government of Haiti. The newspaper expresses its skepticism: “Caution is required when faced by this important draft project, which has been presented in a preliminary marketing phase by a Chinese company, to a municipal politician, both of whom benefit in terms of visibility for one and political capital for the other, while waiting to learn more. Numerous large-scale projects are proposed from time to time in Haiti, but none so far has been born...”

    The marketing YouTube video highlights that the proposed municipal infrastructure project encompasses road engineering, water supply and drainage engineering, environmental sanitation engineering, power supply engineering and communication engineering. See the proposal here:

    Read more:

    The story is being followed by the DR1 Forum community:

    Economy slows down and first-half growth is 4%
    The Governor of the Central Bank of the Dominican Republic, Hector Valdez Albizu, announced that the Dominican economy grew by 4% in the first semester of this year. He called it “a satisfactory growth,” although below what the country has been accustomed to.

    Valdez Albizu, nevertheless, is optimistic that freeing up resources from the legal reserves of the banking system will spark up the economy that by this time last year had grown by 7.4%.

    During a press conference to present the economic results of the first half of the year, the Central Bank governor mentioned that the sectors reporting the most growth were agriculture with 6.2%, mining with 3.7%, local industries at 2.3% and the industrial free zones with a 3.9% growth for the period.

    Construction slowed by 2.7% in the first semester. Given the results in the construction sector, the Central Bank governor said that he had increased by RD$8.0 billion the ceiling of money freed from the bank’s reserve funds that can be aimed at the development of the real estate sector. He also said that in a meeting with President Danilo Medina they reached an agreement to hasten the release of those resources destined for construction in order to accelerate those projects that are underway.

    On the international front, Valdez Albizu said that the Central Bank had repurchased US$324.1 million of Brady bonds so that the foreign debt of the Central Bank shows a clean slate. He explained the operation to the reporters and said that this represents US$65.4 million savings in the payment of those bonds that would have come due in 2024. Valdez Albizu said that gross international reserves are at US$6.5 billion as of June 2017.

    President appoints new Police director
    Brigade General Ney Aldrin de Jesús Bautista Almonte was appointed director general of the National Police on Wednesday, 30 August 2017 by Decree 320-17. He was also promoted to the rank of Major General of the Police for the duration of the position. Previously, he had been the director of the Criminal Investigations Agency (Dicrim) at the National Police.

    In the same decree, President Danilo Medina also appointed Brigade General Nelvis Pérez Sánchez, deputy director general of the National Police.

    The appointments come at a time when the media is focusing on the supposed “Matapolicias” gang said to be responsible for the murder of seven policemen.

    No fishing zones created for Samana
    The Ministry of Environment has created six no fishing zones in Samaná. The Ministry also signed two agreements for collaborating on the strengthening of capacities and conservation of natural resources in the northeastern province.

    Minister Francisco Domínguez Brito said the no-fishing zones are El Manglar de la Jina, Boca del Río Jabón, Bahía de San Lorenzo-Punta Arena, Naranjo Arriba, Boca de Barracote-Arroyo La Ceja-Caño El Pinito and Boca del Río Yuna-Caño Colorado. In these areas the capture and landing of fish and other marine animals is banned to ensure the sustainability of their work as fishermen.

    These areas have been identified as key aggregation areas for fish reproduction by a study carried out in coordination with the Dominican Fishing and Aquaculture Council (Codopesca).

    A first agreement was signed with The Nature Conservancy (TNC) for planning and facilitating the implementation of conservation projects, the strengthening of technical capacities, the consolidation of strategies for adaptation to climate change, the reduction of risks from natural phenomenon, the preparation of scientific studies, among others.

    A second agreement is a memorandum of understanding committing to establishing a co-management model for the Parque Nacional Manglares del Bajo Yuna.

    It costs a little more than US$50 to deport a Haitian
    The Migration Agency (DGM) reported yesterday that the Dominican government has invested RD$139.8 million in the deportations carried out between August 2016 and August 2017. According to a report from the DGM, some RD$132.4 million were spent in land deportations. These average to a cost of RD$2,944 for each person returned to Haiti.

    The report also says that deportations by air cost RD$7.4 million and the average cost per person was RD$20,232. Only 366 persons were deported by air.

    The persons deported came from 37 different countries with the majority coming from Armenia, Afghanistan, Cuba, Colombia, China, Haiti, India, Russia, the United States, and Venezuela.

    Migration says from August 2016 to August 2017 some 44,971 foreigners with “irregular” immigration situation were deported.

    Article 121 of the General Law on Migration says the director general of the DGM is authorized to order the deportation of any foreigner who has entered the country in a clandestine manner or an illegal manner or with false documents. Also liable for deportation are those who remain in the country beyond their visa permits as indicated in the law.

    Senator says legislating is “tough work”
    Senator José Ignacio Paliza, who represents Puerto Plata in the Dominican Senate, confessed to reporters that initially he took a hardline position in his job but as time has passed he has had to adapt his positions in order to move legislation through the chambers that, in his view, the country requires.

    José Ignacio Paliza is the youngest deputy in the 2010-2016 legislature, and now as the senator from Puerto Plata (2016-2020) he shared his views with reporters from Diario Libre newspaper on his experience as an opposition party legislator that is a minority representative in the Senate.

    Among his many activities he told the reporters that he had voted “no” on the Odebrecht contract saying that he thought that the company had had “too much luck.” He noted that he thought it was strange that in such a competitive arena such as construction in the Dominican Republic one company should win so many contracts. Continuing on the theme of Odebrecht, Paliza noted that Odebrecht has betrayed us and the country should no longer have any relationship with them. He said he supported the latest statements by Ruben Jiménez Bichara, executive vice president of the Public Electricity Corporation. Jiménez Bichara has stated that the government would not pay the sums that the company is now requesting for the termination of the work at Punta Catalina.

    Paliza also said that being a member of a minority party in the past had obliged him to be creative and to form alliances. He noted that as a very young member of the Chamber of Deputies his hardline position often brought him into conflict with other deputies, and he noted that complaints such as that the deputies were approving legislative proposals without reading them, such as the law of public salaries, caused him to lose respect of many deputies. Paliza said that with more experience you learn to appreciate the give-and-take of politics especially the forging of political alliances.

    Among his latest efforts as a senator is his renewal of the legislative proposal to reimburse the ITBIS tax to overseas tourists. His latest proposal seeks to create an autonomous national statistics bureau for more transparency in national data. He noted that anyone thinking about investing in the Dominican Republic wants access to recent statistics.

    Olé is not part of Grupo Ramos
    DR1 erroneously reported on 29 August 2017 that Hipermercados Olé are affiliated with the Grupo Ramos. Grupo Ramos explained that they have no relationship of any kind with Hipermercados Olé. The brief in DR1 had reported on the ProConsumidor consumer protection agency shut down of the Av. Duarte Olé store for hygiene issues and expired merchandise.

    Grupo Ramos operates the brands La Sirena, Pola, Multiplaza malls. Their discount chain is Aprezio.

    Naco Golf and Country Club property owners vs Club Deportivo Naco
    The 9th Hall of the National District Penal Court and presiding judge Vladimir Marx Rosario García will be hearing the Naco Golf and Country Club vs Club Deportivo Naco conflict on Thursday, 31 August 2017. A group of the social club’s members that had purchased property in the Naco Golf and Country Club developed by the Club Deportivo Naco have taken the social club and members of its board for the periods 2006 to 2011 to court, in addition to others related to the project. National District prosecutor says there is sufficient evidence in the file to justify the penal prosecution on behalf of the victims.

    The accusation contains facts and circumstances that typify the crime of qualified misconduct and fraud and is directed mainly against Alejandro (Chito) Asmar, Antonio (Toñito) Alma, Omar Awad, Rafael Emilio Moscoso Silva, the Club Deportivo Naco and the San Andrés Caribe Country Club, SA, among others.

    The Naco Golf and Country Club would have included a beach club and expansion of the San Andres Golf Club. The project that began in 2006 should have been completed in three years, but has been abandoned, in detriment to the investors.

    Blas Peralta seeks retrial of Aquino Febrillet murder
    The former president of Fenatrado, the leading truck owner’s association, Blas Peralta, has appealed his 30-year sentence for the murder of the former rector of the state university UASD, Mateo Aquino Febrillet. In the appeal, his lawyers request a retrial. His lawyer Miguel Valerio appealed on grounds that the dispositions of the Penal Procedures Code had been erroneously applied. He seeks that the legal excuse of Peralta having been provoked to commit the murder is grounds for the sentence to be reduced to two years at the La Victoria jail.

    The family of Aquino Febrillet also deposited an appeal where they request that an increase in the cash fine.

    High-level commission to investigate case of missing 16-year old
    Attorney General Jean Alain Rodríguez has created a high-level commission to investigate the case of 16-year old pregnant Emely Peguero who has been missing in the community of Cenoví near San Francisco de Macorís since last week. The main suspect is Marlon Martínez, the boyfriend of the teenager.

    San Francisco Appeals Court prosecutor Felipe Restituyo, as reported in Acento, said that Marlon Martínez confessed to the murder and said he had thrown the body of Peguero in the San Francisco garbage dump.

    Marilin Martínez, the mother of Marlon Martinez, on Wednesday, 30 August 2017, sat for interrogations by Salcedo prosecutor Viterbo Cabral. She is the deputy director of the Salcedo passports office, and a leading PRD party activist. The PRD is an ally of the ruling PLD party. She was left under arrest.

    Nevertheless, she had told reporters from the Diario Libre: “I am not an accomplice. I am acting as a mother. I have placed my son in the hands of the Justice Department that is investigating what it must investigate. “ Later it was reported that an arrest order had been issued for her capture for alleged complicity in the murder.

    There had been optimism the young girl would be found, but with the new reports, the search is now focused on finding her body. She was last known to have gone out on Wednesday, 23 August 2017, with her boyfriend Marlon Martínez to a medical appointment as her relatives have told the authorities and the press. Her family said they did not see her again.

    As reported, the apartment where Marilin Martínez lives with her son was searched by the authorities on Tuesday, 22 August. Although there are rumors that there were blood stains on a mattress and a towel, members of the Justice Department have not disclosed what they found during the search. The Police did confirm that the apartment building surveillance video taken by security cameras has disappeared.

    The watchman on duty at the building told the press he had been watching the security cameras when it captured the moment in which the young man left his apartment carrying a large bag. Kevin Jimenez who has worked at the condominium for eight years said that he witnessed this happening on the morning of Wednesday, 30 August 2017. Jimenez denied that he had taken the video.

    Public protests in the community of San José where the young girl’s parents live have brought to a standstill large areas of the provinces of Duarte and Hermanas Mirabal.

    General Nelson Rosario, spokesman for the Police, said they are working on two possible theories for the disappearance of 16-year old Emily Peguero who was five months pregnant. One is that she refused to have an abortion and the other is that she died from a forced abortion.

    On Wednesday, 30 August 2017, the media reported that dozens of relatives of Peguero, friends and community leaders attempted to take justice into their own hands against Marlon Martínez, when he accompanied police to the San Francisco de Macorís dump in search of the body of Emely Peguero. Police had to intervene. Martínez did not get out of the vehicle in which he was transported to the dump.

    Genaro Peguero, father of the minor, said he no longer has hopes to finding his daughter alive. But, as reported in El Dia, he said that he trusts the investigations will lead to the culprits.

    Irma heads for the Caribbean
    Weather this weekend will be good enough for beach-going. But those in the Dominican Republic should monitor Tropical Storm Irma that has become the 10th named storm of the 2017 Atlantic Hurricane Season as it makes its way towards the Caribbean. The storm is expected to become a powerful cyclone as it moves towards the region next week.

    Gloria Ceballos, director of the National Metereological Office (Onamet) says the storm has 90% probability of becoming a hurricane.
    She said light rains are forecast for this weekend for most of the national territory.

    Follow the reports on the 2017 Hurricane Season at:

    DR loses to US in AmeriCup, qualifies for 2019 Pan Am Games
    The Dominican Republic lost to the United States (56-72) on 30 August 2017, while playing in Group C in the FIBA AmeriCup. By points, the DR team defeated Brazil, Venezuela and Canada that also finished the first round with one win and two losses. The DR lost to Uruguay and the United States, but defeated Panama.

    In the game against the US, the US team jumped to an early lead and never looked back. FIBA News reported that the Dominicans fought hard, but Jeff Van Gundy’s team kept a safe distance, with second opportunities and long rotations. FIBA News focused on the good plays by Dominican Angel Delgado.

    The FIBA AmeriCup 2017 Semi-Finals will be played in Cordoba, Argentina starting 2 September 2017 with the participation of Argentina (host), Mexico, Virgin Islands and the United States.

    At the AmeriCup in Argentina, the Dominican men’s basketball team qualified as one of eight teams to play in the 2019 Lima Pan American Games. The others are: Argentina, Mexico, USA, Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Uruguay and Peru (host).

    Eddy Herrera at Casa de Teatro
    Head to the Colonial City of Santo Domingo for an evening of melodious merengues and boleros. Singer Eddy Herrera and his band are performing their concert “Cerca de ti” at Casa de Teatro on Arzobispo Meriño Street on Thursday, 31 August 2017. The concert starts at 9pm and tickets are RD$1,000.

    Milly Quezada and Miriam Cruz at the Hard Rock
    "La Reina y la Diva" is the name of the concert merengue singers Milly Quezada and Miriam Cruz will present at the Hard Rock Live at the Blue Mall in Santo Domingo on Saturday, 2 September as of 9pm. Also on the program for the evening is stand up comedian Carlos Sánchez. Showtime is 10pm. Tickets for sale online at
    Last edited by Dolores; 09-03-2017 at 04:55 PM.


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