Approximately 20, 624 individuals have gained employment under the Jamaica Emergency Employment Programme (JEEP), which is now in its second phase. The project, which was launched in March this year, is one of the strategies of the Government to respond to the chronic unemployment status of some Jamaicans, particularly those in the lower socio-economic strata, persons with special needs as well as those with low skill levels. Providing information on the initiative at a recent press conference, Minister of Transport, Works and Housing, Dr. the Hon. Omar Davies, said data shows that JEEP has had a meaningful impact on the unemployment level in Jamaica. “The data are very impressive…the data from STATIN (Statistical Institute of Jamaica) in terms of the impact of JEEP, (shows that) there was a reduction in the level of unemployment between the data from April and July, a reduction from 14.3 per cent to 12.8 per cent and the impact of JEEP is significant in terms of the number of jobs created, something in the order of over 20, 000,” he said. The projects have been implemented through several government ministries, in what can be described as a successful example of a joined-up government approach. Employment has been created in the areas of infrastructure, agriculture, education and intensive labour, among others. The Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries has implemented several projects in turmeric cultivation, ginger industry resuscitation, school feeding and expansion of Rural Agricultural Development Agency (RADA) Twickenham industry. To date, over 3,200 persons have benefitted through these projects. The Ministry of Labour and Social Security has been partnering with private sector entities for the attachment of 450 unemployed young adults over a two-year period. Some 405 persons have so far been employed under this initiative, with 379 currently being paid by the private sector employers. Approximately 40 per cent of these trainees have received permanent employment, as a result of the JEEP initiative. In addition, some 624 persons have received employment through the Ministry of Education in partnership with the Heart Trust/NTA. The slate of JEEP projects under the Ministry includes data management, Career Advancement Programme (CAP) and teacher’s assistant programme. The National Works Agency (NWA) has also undertaken a labour intensive programme involving primarily road support infrastructure rehabilitation and maintenance. Through the NWA, a total of 15,145 individuals have received work. “There are several projects, which have been supervised by the NWA because we have reallocated funds from JDIP (Jamaica Development Infrastructure Programme) but the big difference is that Members of Parliament, councillors, community groups have had a say in the development of these capital projects,” Dr. Davies said. The Ministry of Tourism and Entertainment through the Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), has also undertaken various projects through the parish councils, Tourism Product Development Company (TPDCo), National Solid Waste Management Authority (NSWMA), Jamaica National Heritage Trust (JNHT) and the Hope Zoo Foundation, with some 1,074 persons employed to date. Approximately 128 persons have received employment through the Ministry of Transport, Works and Housing. Dr. Davies said Phase II is expected to be completed during financial year 2013/14 and the Government is in the process of seeking funds to continue the work of JEEP. “I expect to have confirmed success in identifying funds early in the New Year, such that it can be built into the budget for 2013/14,” he stated. Some $6 billion has been earmarked to be spent on projects under the JEEP. An estimated 35,000 persons are expected to be employed during Phase II. During Phase I, roughly 15,000 persons were employed in several ministries and agencies. Members of Parliament, other political representatives, government agencies, citizens associations, church groups and non-governmental organizations are able to make submissions to the JEEP Secretariat for projects to be executed under the initiative. Interested individuals may contact the Secretariat at 754-2584 – 9 or visit [email protected]
New Delhi: The Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) met in the capital on Friday and addressed the various queries placed before them by state associations. Interestingly, CoA chief Vinod Rai also clarified the decision to appoint observers in the 10 state associations and said that they wouldnt be involved in any decision-making process. When asked of the decision to appoint observers in Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Sikkim, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Bihar, Chandigarh, Uttarakhand and Pondicherry and whether the new BCCI constitution allows such appointments, Rai said that it was done only to observe the functioning of the states and the observers would not monitor any activity. Also Read – Puducherry on top after 8-wkt win over Chandigarh”The decision was taken because there were large number of queries. It is only to help. He is an observer, he is not participating in the decision-making. It is clear he will neither take decisions nor will he give any directions. He sits there and observes. He doesn’t monitor. It is not a question of giving answers,” Rai clarified. But the mail sent to the state bodies had clearly said that the observers would guide the state associations in cricketing matters.
This Dwight Howard saga now has the Houston Rockets joining the Los Angeles Lakers and the Brooklyn Nets as the most serious potential trade partners with the Orlando Magic on a Dwight Howard deal, according to sources close to the process.Sources told ESPN.com that the Rockets are discussing a multitude of trade scenarios with the Magic, offering to serve both as the team that would acquire Howard in a direct trade between the clubs and also as a third team that would participate in a trade that lands Howard with the Lakers and brings All-Star center Andrew Bynum to Houston.Meanwhile, reports surfaced that Brooklyn is close to agreeing to a contract extension with the Nets — four years for $58 million, or five years for $78 million — which would prevent Lopez from being traded until December.The Rockets, in the latter scenario, would push to acquire Bynum from the Lakers while furnishing the Magic with a package of future draft picks and cap-friendly contracts to set Orlando up for a full-fledged roster reload. Sources confirmed a HoopsWorld.com report that the three-team trade construction that sends Bynum to the Rockets instead of the Magic — with Orlando said to be concerned about its ability to re-sign Bynum for the long term — gained traction Tuesday.The key elements of the three-team proposal, sources said, call for the Lakers to acquire Howard and the Rockets — realizing their long-running quest to acquire a top-20 player — to take back the mercurial Bynum as he enters the final year of his contract.It’s believed that Houston would have to absorb the contract of Magic swingman Jason Richardson and perhaps another unpalatable contract or two to complete a trade directly with the Magic for Howard or to get Bynum. Central to the Rockets’ offer is a 2013 first-round draft pick that they’ll soon acquire from the Toronto Raptors as part of a verbally agreed trade last week that will send guard Kyle Lowry to Toronto. Houston also has movable veterans Luis Scola and Kevin Martin to sweeten any trade proposal.It’s been an open secret for months, meanwhile, that the Rockets were willing to trade for a player of Howard’s or Bynum’s caliber with no assurance that either one will sign an extension as opposed to becoming a free agent in 2013.