President Medina opens schools|
Communities in Santo Domingo province and the eastern provinces of San Pedro de Macoris and Hato Mayor officially received 75 new classrooms yesterday, Tuesday 2 December 2014 as President Danilo Medina inaugurated the new school facilities.
An opening ceremony marking the inauguration of the five new extended day public schools took place in the Maria Marcia Compres School in Los Mameyes, Santo Domingo. The other schools were the Batey Campina School in San Pedro, the Federico Bermudez School in Pedro Santana, the Pajarito School in Quisqueya and the Manchado Primary School in Hato Mayor.
During the ceremony, Education Minister Carlos Amarante Baret focused on the needs of disabled children and said that they were building ramps and special bathrooms in the new schools and that teachers were receiving special training for teaching disabled students.
National Disability Council (CONADIS) director general Magino Corporan also spoke at the ceremony, saying he was grateful that the government was now addressing the needs of disabled students in education for the benefit of more than 3,300 students.
Miguel Pimentel Kareh, head of the Supervising Office of State Works (OISOE), Santo Domingo Province governor Juan Frias, Santo Domingo East mayor Juan de los Santos, Deputies Radhames Fortuna and Karen Ricardo, and Regional Education director Sobeida Sanchez were also present at the event.
President Medina meets with EU and UN delegations|
European Union ambassadors and United Nations representatives met with President Danilo Medina yesterday, Tuesday 2 December 2014 to express their support for the discussions about the development of Haiti. They also presented conclusions of previous meetings by the two institutions to discuss projects in Haiti and how to best support the high-level talks between the Dominican Republic and Haiti.
The border region's potential was also on the agenda, including a discussion on the possibility of expanding the bi-national market in Dajabon.
The European Union ambassador in the Dominican Republic, Alberto Navarro, described the meeting with President Medina as useful and said that they wanted to support the development of both Dominican and Haitian societies. He went on to say that they would be investing 15 million euros in Ouanaminthe on the Haitian side of the border at Dajabon.
Minister of the Presidency Gustavo Montalvo, Foreign Relations Minister Andres Navarro and Presidential legal adviser Cesar Pina Toribio also attended the meeting.
The ambassadors of the United Kingdom, Steven Fisher, France, Blandine Kreiss, Spain, Jaime Lacadena, and the Netherlands in the Dominican Republic, Marijke Van Drunen Little were present, along with the French ambassador in Haiti, Patrick Nicoloso, and the German ambassador in Haiti Victoria Maria Zimmermann Von Siefart.
The meetings took place at a time when the political impasse in Haiti has prevented legislative, national and local elections from being held by mandated deadlines. The parliament could now become dysfunctional if the current political impasse is not resolved giving President Michel Martelly the power to rule by decree when the mandates of members of the already depleted assembly expire on 15 January 2015. The government announced the postponing of the legislative elections that are already three years overdue because the National Assembly has failed to pass an electoral law in time.
President Medina to Veracruz Summit|
The Presidency has confirmed President Danilo Medina's attendance at the Ibero-American Summit in the Mexican city of Veracruz from 8-9 December. Also attending will be the Presidents of Uruguay, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Costa Rica and Ecuador. Argentina's President Cristina Fernandez will not be attending for health reasons but Cuban President Raul Castro is expected to attend.
The Veracruz Summit will be the first one to be attended by Costa Rican Rebeca Grynspan who will be acting as Ibero-American secretary general, and the first time King Felipe VI takes part as Spanish head of state. It will also be the last summit for Jose Mujica as President of Uruguay as he is leaving office, and the first one for the new presidents of Panama, Juan Carlos Varela, Costa Rica, Luis Guillermo Solis, and El Salvador, Salvador Sanchez Ceren.
No Christmas chicken shortage|
Speaking at a meeting with vegetable and fruit growers in the Cibao region yesterday, Tuesday 2 December 2014, Agriculture Minister Angel Estevez said that there will be enough chicken in the country for the month of December, as there were expected to be 17,500,000 birds ready for consumption during the month, a million more than last year.
He said that chicken consumption had increased during the last month, mainly due to the introduction of the extended school day and the provision of lunch to the students.
As far as exports of beans, onions, garlic and rice were concerned, he said that only took place when the national demand had been met, which was 90% of the production.
He went on to talk about the several millions of pesos owed to potato and onion farmers in Constanza and said that National Congress needed to make changes to the Bond Law so that the money could be paid and that the money was owed during the last government and not the present one.
Peaceful Christmas campaign|
Today, Wednesday 3 December 2014, National Police chief Major General Manuel Castro Castillo will launch the "Peaceful Christmas 2014" campaign where more than last year's figure of 10,295 police officers will be patrolling the streets.
Although the initiative is aimed at preventing robberies, wounding and killings, security specialist Daniel Pou says that just as in previous initiatives it actually does not deliver any real results and what is needed is to step up intelligence work.
He added that public awareness also needed to be raised about the use of firearms, violence, reckless conduct and displaying of jewelry.
Dominican Republic 115 of 174 in Corruption Perceptions Index|
According to a new report issued today, Wednesday 3 December 2014 by the NGO Transparency International, Venezuela and Paraguay are seen as the most corrupt countries in Latin American and Uruguay and Chile are the most transparent.
The best countries in the world in terms of corruption perceptions are Denmark, New Zealand and Finland. The worst are Somalia, North Korea and Sudan.
Uruguay and Chile share 21st place in the list of 175 countries with 73 points out of 100, followed by Puerto Rico in 31st place with 63 points and Costa Rica in 47th place with 54 points.
They are followed by Cuba, Brazil, El Salvador, Peru, Columbia, Panama, Bolivia, Mexico and Argentina.
The Dominican Republic is in 115th place of 174 countries alongside Guatemala, both with 32 points. In Latin America, only Guyana, Honduras, Nicaragua, Paraguay and Haiti were ranked worse in corruption perceptions than the DR.
Case against Felix Bautista heard by Supreme Court|
As Transparency International releases the 2014 Global Corruption Perceptions Index and the DR is ranked 115th of 174 countries, protestors are urging the Supreme Court to enable hearings in the case of alleged corruption against PLD senator Felix Bautista, the former director of the Supervisory Office of Public Works of the Presidency (OISOE) during the Leonel Fernandez governments. Bautista is the most prominent "rags to riches" case in the Dominican Republic, but has consistently maintained his innocence and has been able to secure many judicial rulings in his favor.
Bautista is also political secretary of the ruling PLD party.
Starting at 11am today, Wednesday 3 December 2014, Judge Alejandro Moscoso will hear accusations of alleged corruption and asset laundering made by Attorney General against Felix Bautista and Soraida Antonia Abreu Martinez, Jose Elias Hernandez Garcia, Bolivar Antonio Ventura Rodriguez, Carlos Manuel Ozoria Martinez, Gricel Aracelis Soler Pimentel and Bienvenido Apolinar Breton Medina.
Protestors arrived at the Supreme Court early to call for punishment for alleged corruption during the Fernandez administration.
The charges are undermining the Constitution, forgery of public documents, falsification of private writing, use of false documents, breach of trust, embezzlement and actions that are incompatible with public office. The other defendants are accused of complicity.
Wesolowski free, but limited to the Vatican|
The former Papal Nuncio in the Dominican Republic, 65-year old Jozef Wesolowski who is accused of pedophilia, has been under house arrest in the Vatican since September, pending a decision on whether to indict. According to the latest reports, he is now free but is not allowed to leave the Vatican State.
Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said that the release order was given due to his state of heath but he has to stay within the boundaries of Vatican City and there are restrictions on contact with anyone on the outside.
Lombardi said that investigations are continuing, and he has been questioned once and more interrogations will follow.
Lombardi made the comments during a visit to the Vatican earlier in the week by Dominican Attorney General Francisco Dominguez Brito. Dominguez made a first stop in Poland where local prosecutors are hearing the case against another Polish priest, Wojciech Waldemar (Alberto Gil) and said they could also try Josef Wesolowski, given his Polish citizenship. Dominguez Brito met with his Vatican counterpart, prosecutor Gian Piero Milano and the deputy secretary of state, Monsignor Angelo Becciu to discuss the case.
Wesolowski is the highest profile case of clerical pedophilia to be publically exposed and the case has received worldwide media attention. The Roman Catholic Church has been accused of covering up for accused priests.
Wesolowski was recalled to the Vatican on 21 August 2013 after a Santiago TV journalist broadcast an incriminating report on both Polish priests and TV journalist Nuria Piera was on the trail of Wesolowski and his dealings with young street boys in Santo Domingo. As reported in the press, Wesolowski allegedly paid shoeshine boys for sexual acts.
As reported, Dominguez Brito said he was confident the case would create a precedent.
The Vatican confirmed that on Tuesday, 2 December 2014, Pope Francis held an audience with Archbishop Jude Thaddeus Okolo, who replaced Wesolowski.
The Attorney General Office reported that Dominguez Brito greeted Pope Francis who was attending an event in St. Peter's Square. As reported, the Pope spoke of the importance of the truth prevailing in the case against the formal papal nuncio.
Brothers being hunted by police|
Police spokesman Jacobo Mateo Moquete says that they are looking for two brothers who are on the run, accused of six murders in the Cibao region.
Omar and Cesar Lopez Mendez are thought to be behind the shooting of police officer Emmanuel de Jesus Taveras Rosario who is now fighting for his life after being shot in the chest and head when they allegedly stole his police-issued firearm.
The brothers are said to be heavily armed and to have committed other crimes. Mateo Moquete warned them to hand themselves in to the police.
Appeal dismissed as lawyers fail to attend|
National District Judge, Teofilo Andujar has cancelled a habeas corpus appeal brought by the lawyers representing Venezuelan businessman Luis Rafael Rios Virla who is seeking an end to the case against him.
The case was cancelled as his lawyer Cesar Amadeo Peralta did not turn up in court.
The appeal was brought against the Public Prosecution Service, the National Police and the president of Banco Peravia, a collapsed bank.
Rios Virla claimed that the president and vice president of Banco Peravia owed him US$2.5 million and had not paid. He said they had reached an agreement for the payment that within 120 days but he still had not been paid.
Venezuelan businessman Rios Virla came to the country to seek payment and his lawyers said there was a kidnap attempt, supposedly involving 14 armed civilians, four of whom worked for the bank. The attempted kidnapping was thwarted by the Police.
A Very Burlesque Xmas at the Blue Mall|
The Blue Room at the Blue Mall shopping mall on Gustavo Mejia Ricart and Winston Churchill avenues in Santo Domingo presents "A Very Burlesque Xmas" for the festive season on the weekends through 13 December 2014. This is a Marcos Malespin-Estevez production.
Carlos Sanchez at Caribbean Cinemas of Galeria 360|
Stand-up comedian Carlos Sanchez promises to make you laugh today, Wednesday 3 December 2014. He is performing his "Front Row" show at the Caribbean Cinemas at Galeria 360 mall in Santo Domingo. General admission is RD$600.
For more on upcoming events, see http://dr1.com/calendar
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