DR1 Daily News - Thursday, 30 March 2017

Dolores1

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Farm products are alternate source of hard currency and jobs
Education Minister breaks with public school teachers over strikes
Schooldays cut short by lack of food
Unions reject 15% wage hike
Health director denies government employees are obligated to show for Santiago parade
Former PRD spokesman questioned on Odebrecht
DR Central Bank adopts Swift’s Sanctions Screening
Incart opens rehab services for cancer patients
Businesses say security issues force changes in store hours
Newest security measure: Elite troops to patrols
Transport director calls for motorcyclist controls
Milagros German calls for citizen rejection of corruption
Red carpet at Soberano Awards is talk of the town
US historic archives on the DR from 1837 to 1959 now available
Diario Libre Man and Woman of the Year



Farm products are alternate source of hard currency and jobs
The director of the Center for Exports and Investments of the Dominican Republic (CEI-RD) Henry Molina and the executive president of the Dominican Agribusiness Board (JAD) Osmar Benítez announced on 29 March 2017, the celebration of AgroAlimentaria 2017. The food, beverages and tobacco marketplace and fair is set for 18-20 May 2017 at the Jaragua Renaissance Hotel on the Malecon in Santo Domingo. 

Speaking during the announcement press conference, CEI-RD’s Henry Molina highlighted the importance of the food industry for the Dominican economy.  “We need more hard currency and more jobs, and the farm sector is the way to achieve this,” he highlighted as reported in Diario Libre. 

Molina spoke of the implementation of the national brand for farm exports in 2018. He noted that this year’s exports are set to be the very last ones that do not carry the brand of the Dominican Republic. He explained that as of 2018, all Dominican products will be registered with the national copyright that will allow for the immediate identification of Dominican avocados, cacao and all the other Dominican farm products in foreign markets. 

Molina added that the national brand is intended to boost exports and create a history of Dominican products so that thousands of purchasers can acquire products and know they have come from this country. 

Taking part in the presentation was Osmar Benítez, the executive president of the Dominican Agribusiness Board (JAD) who said that the Dominican Republic is today considered a trustworthy provider with competitive prices. The farm experts said at a press conference that they have identified 30 products that have the potential to generate close to US$50 million each year. 

The AgroAlimentaria fair is in its sixth year. Each year it has grown and is now the most important regional platform exclusively dedicated to the farming and agribusiness sector. 

http://agroalimentaria.com.do/


Education Minister breaks with public school teachers over strikes
Education Minister Andres Navarro held a press conference yesterday, 29 March 2017, to announce measures so that students can make up classes lost due to public school teacher strikes called by members of the Dominican Teachers Association (ADP). As reported in 7 Dias, the Ministry is putting a close to the constructive dialogue it had maintained with the public school teachers union. 

Among the measures announced is the hiring of 6,400 temporary teachers among those who recently passed tests to replace the striking teachers. He said they could also ask teachers who had retired to return and are considering hiring professionals that have taken teacher certification courses. Administrative actions would be taken, including the firing of the striking teachers. 

The position is taken after the president of the ADP Eduardo Hildago backed teacher strikes in Barahona, San Francisco de Macorís, Cotuí, Mao, Nagua, San Juan de la Maguana and Salcedo. He says this violates the Quality in Education Agreement signed by all in 2014. 

http://www.7dias.com.do/portada/201...r-evidente-intencion-afectar-ano-escolar.html


Schooldays cut short by lack of food
The president of the Dominican Association of Professors (ADP), the nation’s public school teachers union, Eduardo Hidalgo, told reporters yesterday that many schools throughout the country that offer the extended day program are forced to end classes early because there are no lunches to serve to their students. 

The suppliers, who are being forced to reduce the delivery of the school lunches, complain that the government owes them millions of pesos. Some suppliers told reporters from the Diario Libre that they have not been paid for at least five months. Since many of them are small businesses, they can no longer afford to do business with the government. Hidalgo pointed out that given the lack of food many schools are closing at 1pm. 

René Jaquez, the director of the National Institute of Student Welfare (Inabie), the government program in charge of contracting and paying for the school meals, has argued that the arrears with suppliers are due to several factors, among which is a lack of proper registration with the Procurement Department as well as the poor preparation of their invoices. 

Marino Peralta, the president of the Association of Suppliers and Providers of Food to the Schools of the Dominican Republic, said that the sector that he represents provides approximately 1.2 million daily rations of school lunches and that each ration costs RD$40 pesos. He admitted that the bureaucracy in the payment system makes it difficult for suppliers to receive their money. He told reporters: “What we want is for them to do is get on the ball and pay us the amounts due from last year in order to be able to supply the schools.” 

Diario Libre tried to obtain a statement from the Ministry of Education regarding the situation and were told that Minister Andres Navarro will offer a press conference regarding the situation.


Labor unions reject 15% wage hike
The different labor unions represented at the discussions covering possible minimum wage increases rejected a proposal for a 15% increase made by the Dominican Management Confederation (Copardom) in the presence of the Minister of Labor. The meeting in which the business sector revealed their proposal of a 15% wage hike was conducted in the offices of Labor Minister José Ramon Fadul, before the start of the formal meeting of the National Salary Commission (CNS). 

Management offered the 15% pay raise, but conditioned this to a reclassification of companies by size, arguing that not all companies can afford the 15% increase. 

The labor representatives are demanding a 30% across the board increase in pay. Jacobo Ramos and Rafael (Pepe) Abreu, the presidents of the National Confederation of Dominican Workers (CNTD) and the National Council of Syndicate Unity (CNUS), called the offer “unacceptable and insensitive.” 

The meeting was also attended by representatives of the business sector, Fermin Acosta, the head of Copardom, and Circe Almanzar, the executive vice president of Copardom. 

At the same time Ramos and Abreu said that the worker’s patience was wearing thin and this unacceptable proposal by management is pushing the workers to strike and protest, putting an end to peace in the labor sector. 

Minister Fadul told reporters from the El Nacional newspaper that the government position is that the sectors involved must come up with the salary increase, as suggested by President Danilo Medina. He stressed the need for a consensus of the parties involved. Ramos, speaking for the CNTD, called management’s offer “indecent” and said that he expected a better offer in the coming days.

The Minister of Labor called on the business sector and the unions to reach an agreement because the two-year deadline for obligatory increases in minimum wages is fast approaching. 

The most recent minimum wage increase was in June 2015, when wages were increased 14%. The 2015 resolution established that the minimum wage for large companies to be RD$12,873 a month, while for medium and small-sized companies minimum wages are set at RD$8,850 and RD$7,843, respectively.


Health director denies government employees are obligated to show for Santiago parade
On Sunday, 26 March 2017, probably the largest congregation of people happened spontaneously in Santiago as the poor, middle class and wealthy all gathered to call the government to end administrative corruption and impunity and set an example with the Odebrecht government construction case. Odebrecht has already admitted to paying US$92 million in bribes to government officers. 

Now social media is reporting public officers are being obliged to attend a parade that will be head by President Danilo Medina on Thursday, 30 March 2017 at 5pm at the Avenida Hermanas Mirabal corner President Antonio Guzman, part of the same route used by the protest parade. 

A note indicated employees at the Santiago aqueduct office (Corasaan) were getting off as of noon so they could attend the parade at 4pm. 

Listin Diario published another note circulated to employees working in the public hospital system where it indicates their presence is obligatory on that date and place. The note is signed by the regional director of public health, Austria de la Rosa Cuevas. 

But her head, the director of the National Health Service (SNS) Nelson Rodríguez Monegro, denied the obligation and said the parade is a historic commemorative event where citizens are invited to be present. 30 March marks the date in 1844 of the second decisive battle against Haitian occupants of the newly declared Dominican Republic (27 February 1844). The first had been in Azua on 19 March 1844. The Dominican troops under General José María Imbert defeated the larger contingent under Haitian General Jean-Louis Pierrot. 

MetroRD asked Rosalia Sosa of Participacion Ciudadana civic group if the government could obligate its employees to attend the parade and was told there is no law that states so, but that it is a general practice to ask government employees to show support to their employer. 

http://www.listindiario.com/la-repu...dos-de-manera-obligatoria-a-desfile-de-manana
https://www.metrord.do/do/destacado...mpleados-publicos-asistir-evento-oficial.html
http://www.7dias.com.do/portada/201...icipar-acto-que-encabezara-danilo-medina.html


Former PRD spokesman questioned on Odebrecht
As the parade of mostly former government officials continues to pass through the offices of the Attorney General for questioning in the Odebrecht case, the former spokesman for the then opposition party PRD in the Chamber of Deputies, Ruddy Gonzalez was questioned on 28 March 2017, by the Attorney General Jean Alain Rodriguez regarding international loans approved by Congress for the construction of government projects to be carried out by the Brazilian firm Odebrecht. 

Gonzalez, who was also the chairman of the Finance Commission at the time, was cited by Attorney General Jean Alain Rodriguez for questioning with relation to bribes that Odebrecht has admitted paying to two unnamed legislators and officials of the government. 

The former legislator arrived at the office of the Attorney General around midmorning and the interview continued into the afternoon. Gonzalez is just one of a long list of legislators who have been brought in for questioning regarding the Odebrecht corruption case. 

Interviewed by the press after the meeting with the Attorney General he acknowledged his close friendship ties to Odebrecht commercial representative Angel Rondon, who admitted to having received a similar sum to the US$92 million in bribes, but has argued these were his fees, not a bribe.
http://eldia.com.do/odebrecht-no-pago-soborno/


DR Central Bank adopts Swift’s Sanctions Screening
The Central Bank of Dominican Republic has adopted its Sanctions Screening solution to enhance transparency and combat financial crime. The bank already in May 2015 had implemented Swift’s KYC Registry as a financial community. The announcement was made by the company in a press release. 

The industry utility - which has now reached its 600-member milestone - enables banks to take a proactive approach in mitigating de-risking and building greater trust with the international financial community.
https://www.swift.com/news-events/p...central-bank-adopts-swift-sanctions-screening


Incart opens rehab services for cancer patients
The Rosa Emilia Sanchez Pérez de Tavares National Cancer Institute (Incart) began services yesterday, 28 March 2017, as the first center in the Dominican Republic to offer rehabilitation for oncological patients that seek to ameliorate the negative side effects of treatment, both pharmaceutical as well as surgical. The new rehab center was donated and equipped by the Bravo Group through their subsidiary, the Smart Fit gym. 

El Nacional reported that the center provides rehabilitation, physical and occupational therapy as well as cognitive rehabilitation for patients. Speech and hearing therapy, oncological massages, group exercise therapy, yoga, tai chi and pilates will also be offered. The center is located on the sixth floor of the National Cancer Institute, and will be able to serve as many as 40 patients a day.


Businesses say security issues force changes in store hours
The increase in crime risk has forced business owners to open their stores later and to close them earlier. 7dias.com quoted the president of the National Federation of Merchants and Businessmen (Fenacerd), Manuel Ortiz Tejada, having said criminals have violated the peace of mind that Dominicans have traditionally enjoyed. 

He said that the lack of safety that affects the country has forced merchants who previously opened at 6am to open at 7:30am. Regarding closing hours, Ortiz Tejada explained that businesses that previously offered their services until midnight are now closing by 9pm, while others are closing at 6pm. He told reporters that a tour of Villa Consuelo will show how at 4pm people are already closing for the day.  

Fenacerd represents colmados, warehouses and small supermarkets. Ortiz Tejada and his federation are asking for the government to establish some sort of plan to reduce criminal activity.


Newest security measure: Elite troops to patrols
Interior and Police Minister Carlos Amarante Baret, Defense Minister Ruben Paulino Sem, Police director Nelson Peguero Paredes spoke at a press conference yesterday, 29 March 2017 to announce that elite troops would be integrated into city patrols. These are the Topos, Linces and Swat groups. 

The country’s security heads announced patrols of 5,000 policemen and 2,000 military. They also said they are working closely with intelligence divisions of the Armed Forces and Drug Control Agency (DNCD) as well as with the National Investigations Agency (DNI). 

The security chiefs said they would be drastic with motorcyclists. Luis Estrella, director of Ground Transport (OTTT) at the Ministry of Public Works recently said that motorcyclists are involved in 80% of the recent crimes. 

http://www.7dias.com.do/portada/201...-las-calles-para-enfrentar-criminalidad.html 
https://www.diariolibre.com/noticia...rzar-a-la-pn-contra-la-delincuencia-CF6698488


Transport director calls for motorcyclist controls
The director of the Ground Transport (Transito Terrestre) Luis Estrella said that the implementation of Resolution 02-16 that regulates motorcycle driving is the best way to reduce the increasing number of assaults attributed to persons riding on motorcycles. The resolution was issued in August 2016, but at the time its implementation was aborted by Minister of the Presidency Gustavo Montalvo. 

The resolution ordered that for more than one person to ride on a motorcycle, the owner of the motorcycle needs to have a permit from the department, and the second passenger needs to be wearing a protective helmet. 

Estrella said the resolution sought to reduce accidents and crime. He said 80% of the crimes that have recently occurred have involved a motorcyclist. 

Criminals have become more brazen. Social media yesterday shared a video showing a motorcycle assailant sweeps right beside a Metropolitan Transport Authority agent to snatch the bag of a passing woman. 

http://www.listindiario.com/la-repu...tre-insiste-en-resolucion-regula-motocicletas
http://hoy.com.do/video-vea-como-asaltan-mujer-en-presencia-de-un-amet/


Milagros Germán uses Soberano stage to call for end to impunity
Upon winning her second Soberano award during the Soberano Awards 2017, TV host Milagros Germán used the opportunity to express her concern for the direction the country has taken. She called on Dominicans to take an active role in demanding that country change course. 

“This is the moment to assume our responsibility as a country. We are in a delicate time, these are difficult moments and together we can should to shoulder become a single conscience so that our country can walk on a more dignified and honest path.” 

She said her plea had no particular color, nor was directed at any political party, “but we embrace the green of hope so that together we can build a Dominican Republic that our children deserve and for which future generations will judge us.” 

Her statues were for the Weekly Entertainment Show Award:  “Qué chévere es saber. ” She took the stage accompanied by Irving Alberti, Raeldo López, Carlos Durán and  Enrique Quailey, other key show participants. Her second award was in the category of Daily Entertainment Program: “Chévere Nights.” 

https://www.metrord.do/do/arte/2017/03/29/milagros-german-llamado-atencion-soberano-2017.html


Giannina Azar runway show or red carpet at Soberano Awards?
Fashion critics observed that there were so many similar dresses worn by women on the evening of the Soberano Awards that it appeared to be a runway show for a fashion collection, or rather that the artists were wearing a uniform. Fashion designer Giannina Azar’s transparent fitted lace gowns seemed to prevail. Even Pamela Sued, co-host of the event, was dressed in a lace gown. Others were Yelitza Reyes, Yelitza Lora, Zeny Leyva, Mariasela Alvarez, Beba Rojas. 

http://eldia.com.do/una-alfombra-roja-arriesgada-y-repetitiva/
http://acento.com.do/2017/video/gal...bueno-la-alfombra-roja-premios-soberano-2017/
http://www.elcaribe.com.do/2017/03/29/los-desaciertos-noche-gran-gala
http://acento.com.do/2017/video/gal...bueno-la-alfombra-roja-premios-soberano-2017/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fRqvyhoZwOA 
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ypUs5-rwERQ
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3RFmJvk9MK0
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WyqcpTxAojM
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o0Zg7hCwuhk
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FwvVXcweY-w
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ariuSqVul8c


US historic archives on the DR from 1837 to 1959 now available
The Dominican Academy of History (ADH) has donated to the National Archives a collection of archives recovered from the United States National Archives. Historian Mu-Kien Sang Ben and Bernardo Vega handed over the collection of documents he worked to compile to Roberto Cassa, director of the National Archives (AGN). Also present was Adriano Miguel Tejada, executive editor of Diario Libre. The documents were recovered by Vega, with the sponsorship of ADH patron, Juan Bautista Vicini Lluberes. 

The collection is made of 189 compact discs containing photographs of more than 134,000 documents related to the Dominican Republic with information from the years 1837 to 1959.  

Cassá said now Dominicans interested in information from those years will no longer have to go to Washington, D. C. to research the documents. 

Tejada explained that information for the years after 1959, while already declassified, is not included because this has yet to be digitalized in the United States. He said the collection will provide insights into US diplomats and state officials on historic processes happening in the country and the international reactions to those events.


Diario Libre Man and Woman of the Year
Diario Libre readers have chosen Oscar Villanueva and Yeycy Donastorg as the Man and Woman of the Year. They are honored for their contributions to a better Dominican society. 

Ford vehicle franchiser businessman Oscar Villanueva is credited for creating the “Quereme como Soy” movement in favor of children with special needs. He has a child with Down Syndrome. 

Medical doctor Yeycy Donastorg is recognized for her work in developing HIV vaccines at the Instituto Dermatológico in Santo Domingo in coordination with the Ministry of Public Health. She is also working on the creating of a vaccine against chikungunya. 

Other finalists were Camilo Rijo, Juan Oviedo, Mario Serrano and Ricardo Garcia. Finalists to the Woman of the Year were Flor de la Cruz, Carmen Celeste Jimenez, Gisela Eusebio, and Samantha Canals. 

https://www.diariolibre.com/noticias/oscar-villanueva-y-yeycy-donastorg-h-y-m-del-ano-2016-LF6698368
 

me_canadian

New member
Jun 29, 2016
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Transport director calls for motrcyclist controls.
< SOLUTION > Why do motorcycle drivers not need a driver license & insurance, and impose an age limit !.. Also why do AMET only stop motorcycle drivers without a helmet on certain days, it should be every day, all day, and they never ask for ID or a MATRICULA, they just hand you the keys and away you go, what if the driver stole the motorcycle, possibly that is why so many motorcycles in the AMTE compound !
 

irishpaddy

Active member
Sep 3, 2013
830
3
38
Transport director calls for motrcyclist controls.
< SOLUTION > Why do motorcycle drivers not need a driver license & insurance, and impose an age limit !.. Also why do AMET only stop motorcycle drivers without a helmet on certain days, it should be every day, all day, and they never ask for ID or a MATRICULA, they just hand you the keys and away you go, what if the driver stole the motorcycle, possibly that is why so many motorcycles in the AMTE compound !
if they were to stop all drivers without helmets ...they would also be stopping fellow amet and their brothers in the policia
 

drstock

Well-known member
Oct 29, 2010
2,459
85
48
Cabarete
Transport director calls for motrcyclist controls.
< SOLUTION > Why do motorcycle drivers not need a driver license & insurance, and impose an age limit !.. Also why do AMET only stop motorcycle drivers without a helmet on certain days, it should be every day, all day, and they never ask for ID or a MATRICULA, they just hand you the keys and away you go, what if the driver stole the motorcycle, possibly that is why so many motorcycles in the AMTE compound !
Moto drivers do need to have insurance. Sometimes AMET ask to see that and the matricula and if not produced they can impound the moto. More important, all Dominicans know that AMET do not usually work evenings and Sundays, so anything goes then.
 

Bob Boyd

Member
Feb 3, 2004
230
8
18
In Sosúa and Cabarete, motorcycle drivers don’t even slow down for red traffic lights. How can the government reduce accidents when AMET doesn’t enforce basic traffic regulations?
 

irishpaddy

Active member
Sep 3, 2013
830
3
38
In Sosúa and Cabarete, motorcycle drivers don’t even slow down for red traffic lights. How can the government reduce accidents when AMET doesn’t enforce basic traffic regulations?
I am sure that this is not just sosua and cabarete ...how about the whole island and it is not just motorcycles