The week that was
June 30, 2015

Last week, we congratulated primary school students who aced the CPEA exam. This week, it’s the turn of secondary school students and the 837 graduates of the SVG Community College.

This year’s largest-ever SVGCC graduating class – led by valedictorian Kyle James – crossed the stage in Victoria Park to accept Bachelor’s degrees, Associate’s degrees, and CAPE “A-level” certificates. Students and parents across SVG beamed with pride at the accomplishments, even though an uncertain job market or expensive university loom on the horizon.{{more}}

Thankfully, the Leader of the Opposition did not taint the celebrations with another round of partisan gloom and inaccurate attacks on the quality of the institution. With close to 2,500 students proudly enrolled in the Community College, an election year might not be the right time to suggest that they are pursuing “worthless” degrees.


The last Ecuadorean engineers have packed up and shipped out, leaving behind four bridges across the leeward side of SVG. Most impressive is the recently inaugurated Hope Bridge in Penniston, which now holds the distinction of being the longest span in the country. The Hope Bridge crosses a newly “trained” Buccament river, which should be less violent during heavy rains; and runs past several new low income houses, which were built for victims who lost their homes in the 2013 floods. The bridge and the homes are a welcome sign that things are returning to normal on the leeward coast, which suffered the most property damage and lost lives during the December 2013 tragedy.


After a star-studded and filled-to-capacity H2O “wet fete” last Saturday, it may be strange to see Luke Boyea’s name here; but it’s well deserved. Boyea’s Hot 97 Radio Station has dominated the airwaves and the concert-promotion business for a long time and is still the overwhelming choice of young Vincies. But over the last year, some plucky competition has emerged, in the form of Boom 106.9 and Xtreme 104.3. Naturally, these radio stations would end up sponsoring competing events over the short Carnival season. So, no one was surprised when Xtreme 104 counter-programmed the high-end H2O concert with a more affordable “Cheaper Water” event in Mespo the same night. What was surprising, though, was Boyea’s churlish and childish response. His put-downs of the Mespo fete dripped with elitism, classism and disdain for less fortunate Vincentians. His thinly veiled intimidation of artistes that planned to perform at both events was also thuggish and heavy-handed. Boyea is the same guy whose late December party, the aptly named “Stush,” was intentionally placed on the same night as the more established annual “Hypnosis” event. Now he’s lashing out at a little spirited Carnival competition. No one says that Boyea has to embrace his competitors, but he could fight for his turf without insulting half the country.


Any casual cricket fan will tell you that the Windies are terrible. A more informed observer might explain that while our batting is maddeningly inconsistent, our bowling attack is simply toothless. Calypsonian Malcolm Junior “Marshie” Marshall, himself named after one of the greatest fast bowlers in Windies’ history, used this deficiency as the basis of his new song “Professional Bowlers.” Marshie suggested that there might well be some hidden bowling talent in SVG that the Windies could exploit. At the very least, our public servants couldn’t do any worse than the limp attacks that we trotted out against Australia and England in recent series. Unfortunately, Luis de Shong, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Health, is opposed to Marshie’s recruiting drive, and has fired off a dour “lawyer letter” to silence the Calypso finalist and keep the song off of local radio. Not exactly in keeping with the Vincentian culture of Carnival humour and picong. The PS doth protest too much, methinks.