Dominica last week: Top five stories you may have missed
Weekes bids farewell to the police force
After an impressive 40-year tenure with the Commonwealth of Dominica Police Force (CDPF), Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP) Claude Weekes has embarked on a new phase in his life.
As of August 8, 2023, Weekes has commenced his pre-retirement leave, with his official retirement slated for March 2024. His departure marks the end of an era of fearlessness, dedication, and an unmatched understanding of his role.
Renowned for his bold demeanour, he has made a lasting impact on the CDPF. Unafraid to voice his thoughts, Weekes' directness has earned him the respect of colleagues and the community. His willingness to confront challenges head-on has played an instrumental role in maintaining peace and order in Dominica.
Dominica misses another regional crown
Despite her best efforts, reigning Miss Dominica Adicia Burton has yet to capture another crown in another regional pageant. Last week, the Kalingo beauty competed in her second regional pageant, the Miss Caribbean Culture Queen, and when the dust settled, and the results were announced, twenty-year-old Shemina Peroune took the crown, defeating Miss St. Vincent and the Grenadines Jada Ross in second place and Miss St. Thomas, USVI Lamonee Morris in third place.
The show, which returned to St Kitts and Nevis on August 7, after three years owing to COVID-19 Pandemic restrictions, featured nine delegates from across the region, including reigning Miss Dominica.
However, when the top five who would advance to the questions and answers segment were released following the four rounds of competition, Dominica was one of the four who failed to find favour with the judges, therefore ending her participation in the contest.
The prestigious title was last captured by Dominica in 2017 by Jade Romain.
The competition marked Burton's second participation in a regional pageant, the first being the Miss Jaycee pageant, in which she emerged as first runner-up, with host country Antigua and Barbuda taking the title on July 31.
Government announces public consultations on electoral reform commence
Last week, the Government of Dominica announced that a series of public consultations on the review of the electoral system in the Commonwealth of Dominica, conducted by Sir Dennis Byron, is set to commence on August 14, 2023.
According to a release, the first consultation is scheduled for 7 p.m. at the State House Conference Center for members of the legal fraternity; and the second for representatives of political parties and independent candidates on August 15, 2023, at the same venue and time.
Sessions are also scheduled for the public, trade unions, business associations, youth-based organisations, sports associations, and the media, as well as for medical professionals, engineers and contractors, and managers of financial services, among other groups.
Representatives of the Organization of American States (OAS), The Commonwealth, CARICOM, and the Organization of Eastern Caribbean States (OECS) will participate in the consultations, on the invitation of Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit.
Sir Dennis Byron submitted his final report on Monday, June 12, 2023, following a comprehensive review of Dominica's electoral system and processes.
Participants will consider the Phase 1 report, which includes a draft Regulation of Electors Bill 2023 and a draft Registration of Electors Bill 2023, and the Phase 2 report, which consists of: The draft House of Assembly (Elections) Bill 2023; The draft House of Assembly (Electors) Regulations 2023; The draft House of Assembly Election Petition Rules 2023 and The draft Electoral Commission Bill 2023.
The consultations are scheduled to run until August 28, 2023, with sessions planned at the community level and with members of the Diaspora to ensure participation from a broad cross-section of the Dominican society.
Members of the public can also provide feedback on the Sir Dennis Byron Report by sending written submissions to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Douglas takes up the position of new ambassador in Cuba
Former Minister for Trade, Commerce, and Entrepreneurship Ian Douglas, recently appointed Dominica's Ambassador to the Republic of Cuba, has left the island to take up his new position.
Douglas replaces Matthew Walter, the former long-serving Parliamentary Representative for the Paix Bouche Constituency (1995 – 2009) and former Agriculture and Fisheries and Community Development, Gender Affairs and Information Minister.
During an interview on State-owned DBS Radio, Douglas said he is looking forward to his new role and is committed to strengthening the relations between the two countries. He mentioned some challenges in agriculture and hoped to have more exchanges with Cuba to expand Dominica's agricultural industry.
The former parliamentary representative for the Portsmouth constituency said he is committed to strengthening the relations between the two countries and continuing to build upon what has already been established.
The event is set to take place in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from November 30 to December 12, 2023.
Bram Sanderson dies
The sporting fraternity has been thrown into shock with the sudden passing of national athlete Bram Sanderson in the early hours of this morning.
Sanderson who represented Dominica in a number of sporting disciplines died after being involved in a traffic accident in Antigua at 3:05 am Sunday morning at the intersection of Sir Sydney Walling Highway and American Road.
He was just 30 years old.
Sanderson was riding a motorcycle when it collided with a pick up van at an intersection.
The impact left him with multiple injuries and he died while being transported to the hospital.
Bram Sanderson can be described as a multi talented athlete.
He was the first Dominican to participate in cycling at the commonwealth games, when he represented Dominica at the 2018 games in Australia.
He was also the first Dominican to participate on the global stage in the sport of Kayak.
Bram Sanderson was also a well rounded track and field athlete and basketballer.