CARICOM working with EC to quicken access to funding

(CARICOM Secretariat, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown, Guyana)     The CARICOM Secretariat has taken note of an article which appeared recently in the regional media concerning the programming of regional resources from the European Union.  The Secretariat strongly denies that any sloth on its part (“slow action by regional bureaucrats”) has held up the regional programming or prevented Member States from accessing regional funds.

The article quotes the Head of the EU Delegation in Kingston as saying: “The CARIFORUM/CARICOM Secretariat has been unable to come up with a viable proposal to start implementing these funds…”   Assuming that the Head of Delegation has been correctly quoted, the Secretariat wishes to clarify the course the programming of the regional funds has taken.

Since the signing of the 10th EDF Regional Indicative Programme in November 2008, the European Commission (EC) has required the Region to develop a detailed Roadmap and CARIFORUM’s submission of its priorities for the use of the resources extracted from the Roadmap, before any work on a detailed programming of the resources of the Euro 165 million would be contemplated.

In consultation with Member States, the Secretariat, between February, when agreement was reached on how the Region should proceed, and September 2009, completed and presented to the European Commission several versions of the Roadmap.

The first version was discussed with the EU delegation in Georgetown, Guyana and based on their comments, a second version was drafted for discussion at a meeting in Brussels. At that meeting, Commission officials advised the Secretariat that 10th EDF Regional Resources could not be accessed before July 2010.

In    mid-July 2009, a third version was discussed at the CARIFORUM-EC Dialogue in Antigua and Barbuda. The EC Director-General Development, in correcting the July 2010 timing for the availability of the regional resources, advised that the resources could be accessed once CARIFORUM and the Commission could agree on the priorities, and the relevant documentation could be processed through the Commission’s systems.  At that time he suggested that submission of the Road map and priorities list should take place by 31 October 2009.  The Secretary-General, however, committed the Region to making the submission by 30 September 2009.

On 30 September 2009, another version, amended to reflect the agreement reached with the Commission at the mid-July Dialogue and the CARICOM/CARIFORUM internal discussions during September 2009, was duly submitted by the Secretary-General to Commission.

The Director-General, EuropeAid Co-operation Office (AIDCO) and Development responded to the Secretary-General’s correspondence of 30 September 2009 on 30 November 2009.

No further action was possible before this response, but since then the Secretariat has been working with the EU Delegation in Georgetown, Guyana, which manages the Regional Programme together with the Commission headquarters in Brussels, to advance the work required to ensure that the Regional Programme is put in place as expeditiously as possible.

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1 Comment

  1. asset or liability
    December 23, 2009

    Can Lead Counsel for the Government, Mr. Anthony Astaphan tell us if dual citizenship will hurt of help us?

    In light of the fact that In October 29, 2009 Mr Astaphan fought and won the legal battle preventing persons holding dual citizenship from being nominated yet in December 2009 he publicly campaigned in favour of Roosevelt Skerit being nominated despite haven failed to inform the public until revealed by opposition candidates that he has been a holder of a French passport since 1972.

    Has he changed his mind or does his argument not apply to Dominica and the other CARICOM members?
    What are the far reaching implications/consequences/benifits?

    Does and did his loyalty and sworn allegiance to a foreign power affect his:
    • Past and future fiduciary responsibilities?
    • Holding posts in regional bodies such as the ALBA, CARICOM and OECS?
    • Chairmanship of ECCB
    • Participating in EU trade negotiations and agreements?
    • Serving as minister of national (and regional) security?
    • Awarding multimillion dollar/euro contracts to French/EU companies for the exploitation of national resources such quarries, geothermal energy, fishing grounds, territorial waters etc.
    • Interference in fisheries matters involving quarries polluting the traditional fishing grounds, releasing of French fishermen caught illegally fishing in Dominica’s territorial waters…French coast guard being allowed to operate freely in the territorial waters of Dominica.
    • How do these decisions also affect other Caribbean nations?

    Photo taken during the Prime ministers oath shows Mr. Anthony Astaphan and Savarin’s faces and body language in the picture taken during the swearing in of Roosevelt Skerrit as prime minister of Dominica .

    Isn’t Anthony Astaphan trying to hide?
    You can hide behind the radio but does not the picture tell a thousand words?

    See link to case Anthony Astaphan won to prevent an oposition candidate from being nominated in St.Kitts Note the date.
    http://www.nevisblog.com/candidates-must-sign-declarations-that-they-do-not-hold-dual-citizenship.html

    “(Basseterre, St. Kitts – Nevis
    October 29, 2009 (CUOPM)

    Lead Counsel for the Government, Mr. Anthony Astaphan said the Legal Team wants to ensure that persons who are qualified for election to the St. Kitts and Nevis National Assembly are not holding dual citizenship and are properly qualified on Nomination Day.

    Section 28 (1) of the St. Kitts and Nevis Constitution given the Nation when it became independent during the Administration of the People’s Action Movement on September 19th 1983 states: “A person shall not be qualified to be elected or appointed as a member of the National Assembly if by virtue of his own act, under any acknowledgement of allegiance, obedience or adherence to a foreign power or state.”

    Speaking at a News Conference on Wednesday, Mr. Astaphan said a request was made Monday and granted by the High Court to allow the Legal Team to review and clarify the language in the National Assembly Elections Amendment Act 2009.

    “We have realised that it is a part of the strategy, forensic or otherwise, to consistently threaten or issue injunctions on real or perceived or illusionary reasons. We therefore think that in the interest of time, we must do all that is necessary to clear the deck, to remove obstacles and reasons so that we can pave the way to permit the Prime Minister on the conditions that he thinks best, to exercise the prerogative given to him to call the general elections unfettered, absolutely unfettered by unnecessary litigation most of which is being threatened from the political platform,” said Mr. Astaphan.

    “This does not mean and our advice to the Attorney General was never intended to mean that the basic objects of the Act changed. The purpose of the Act was to ensure that persons who are eligible to be elected, sign the appropriate declarations which are consistent with the provisions of the constitution and that if someone has said in the past or maybe under any possibility of a disqualification that he is obliged by any revised version of the law, to swear declarations as to his eligibility and the absence of any ground for his disqualification. The reason for that is we want to remove any reasons for litigation,” said Astaphan.

    He pointed out that the present Act as amended, vests in the Returning Officer to collect evidence and to decide on the evidence presented.

    “It is possible that the PAM may even if we clear the decks now, on any present litigation may in a future litigation prior to the elections may want to take the point that a Returning Officer is appointed by the Supervisor of Elections and the Executive Branch and therefore there is the appearance of bias on not real or factual appearance of bias,” said Astaphan, who was flanked by Dr. Henry Browne, Mr. Sylvester Anthony and Dr. Kenny Anthony.

    Mr. Astaphan said that his advice to the Attorney General is that the revision which takes place would ensure that any questions of disqualification is unequivocally and unambiguously vested in the Supreme Court by virtue of the provisions of the Constitution.

    “This revision is not merely removing obstacles or reasons or possible reasons real or perceived for litigation. It will also add to the scope of the amended Act. It will ensure that there are appropriate declarations consistent with the law, which will be drafted consistently with the provisions of the Constitution and authorities that are already decided the point,” Mr. Astaphan told the Press.

    “The proposed revision does not affect the fundamental question which exist today that any candidate nominated must be qualified for election and must not suffer from any disqualification vice, such as dual citizenship of the United States, even if you have renounced, there must be a completion of the renunciation process via the State Department or other relevant foreign affairs authority in that jurisdiction and that if anyone is on Nomination Day suffering from such a vice, any vote in his direction or for him in any election, would be a complete waste of time and that his election would be subject to challenge in the court by election petition,” said Mr. Anthony.

    He said there is no concession, abdication or surrender on the essential primary object of the legislation, which was to ensure that on Nomination Day persons who are qualified on Nomination Day to be candidates, swear declarations as to eligibility and disqualification and the question of the legality of that or any contravention of that declaration will be dealt with either in the criminal court in accordance with the provisions of the relevant sections or by petition.

    “Anyone who is convicted of an offence of that kind or has been found guilty of the disqualification or swearing to a false declaration will be subject to disqualification. So the substantive basis of the Act remains. What we are doing is advising that the language be clarified to ensure that all that the Returning Officer is responsible to do is to ensure that the declarations are properly attended to and sworn and that questions of eligibility and non eligibility will be dealt with by the high court,” said the senior counsel.

    “The primary objective of this legal team is to remove any reason for possible litigation so that we can clear the deck for the Hon. Prime Minister to make his decision when he wants to call the general elections unfettered by injunctions threatened by the political platform,” Astaphan reiterated.)”

    His face tells his guilt.

    Constitution of the Commonwealth of Dominica

    CHAPTER III PARLIAMENT
    Part 1 Establishment of Parliament
    32.Disqualifications for Representatives and Senators.
    1. A person shall not be qualified to be elected or appointed as a Representative or Senator (hereinafter in this section referred to as a member) if he-

    a.is by virtue of his own act, under any acknowledgement of allegiance, obedience or adherence to a foreign power or state;

    Go see for yourself, there are young Dominicans in prison for no crime, others for mistaken identity, some because they had nothing to eat, most because they have no legal representation …
    Can someone look up the following laws of Dominica?

    http://www.dominica.gov.dm/laws/

    are the :
    Oaths ACT Chapter 5-50
    http://www.dominica.gov.dm/laws/chapters/chap5-50.pdf

    ACT 10:01
    http://www.dominica.gov.dm/laws/chapters/chap10-01.pdf

    PERJURY ACT Chapter 10:30
    http://www.dominica.gov.dm/laws/chapters/chap10-30.pdf

    OECS ACT

    CARICOM security ACT

    NATIONAL SECURITY ACT
    ….have they been broken or added to?

    confused…???

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