Jamaicans, especially members of the Diaspora, are invited to participate in the first in a series of ‘Customs meets the Community-the Diaspora Online Edition’ forum on Monday, March 11 from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm.The engagement is a Jamaica Customs Agency (JCA) public education initiative designed to engage various stakeholders and clients on customs-related matters.The JCA’s Public Relations and Customer Service Director, LaDonna Manning, told JIS News that persons may participate via their electronic devices by logging onto any of the sites or social media platforms (Instagram, Twitter or Facebook) accessible at www.jacustoms.gov.jm, or through similar channels hosted by the Gleaner or Nationwide 90 FM.The session will be streamed live, thereby enabling persons to submit questions and have them answered immediately. Individuals can also tune in to the Jamaica News Network to watch the session.Panelists and resource persons slated to participate include representatives from the Ministries of Finance and the Public Service, and Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade; National Education Trust; Health for life and Wellness Foundation; the Department of Cooperatives and Friendly Societies; the Plant Quarantine Unit; the Veterinary Services Division; the Trade Board; and the JCA.Ms Manning said one of the initiative’s objectives is to provide a medium for stakeholder feedback.“We want to hear from them [about] the challenges that they might have, and also their recommendations as to how we, as an Agency, can serve them more effectively,” she pointed out.Ms. Manning indicated that the session will serve to inform, educate, and provide clarity on matters regarding charitable items being brought in, among other things.“Persons sometimes wish to send things to charities in Jamaica, but are unaware of the protocols. So this engagement should inform persons of the do’s and the don’ts,” she added.Ms. Manning further indicated that the session will inform members of the Diaspora wishing to return home, about the concessions available to them and the requisite steps to access these benefits.She assured that “persons can expect to leave the session better informed, better educated and much more comfortable doing business with the Agency”.“The JCA will continue to seek various ways to channel information to our customers, wherever they are, [and] to serve them as best we can, as we must continue to be customer-focused, transparent, professional and accountable,” Ms. Manning added.
One of the organisers of Tropical Vibes, Portia Clarke-Millanaise, recently called on the Jamaican High Commissioner. One of London’s leading community radio stations will be taking 200 of their listeners and friends to Jamaica from November 6 for a 10-day visit, titled ‘Tropical Vibes’.Tropical Vibes is the initiative of Vibes FM, a London based community radio station known for supporting Reggae, Roots and Dancehall music for more than two decades.One of the organisers of Tropical Vibes, Portia Clarke-Millanaise, recently called on the Jamaican High Commissioner, Her Excellency Aloun N’dombet-Assamba, to update her on the plans for this year’s visit to Jamaica.She told the High Commissioner that this will be the third visit to Jamaica and that many of those going are second and third generation Jamaicans ranging in age from 23 to 60 years.Mrs. Clarke-Millanaise said the concept was developed when a deejay from the station, Courtney Melody, approached former travel agent specialist of the Caribbean, Marcia Clarke, to manage the project.“As they were both Jamaicans, they had many contacts and interests on the island and very soon they were bouncing ideas back and forth for themes, events and parties, so as to make this a trip of a lifetime,” she said.She added that Tropical Vibes will not be restricted to hotels, as the visitors will be taken on a range of excursions that will include bar-be-ques, music events, and other cultural activities.“This year Tropical Vibes was sold out to 200-plus tourists with a mixed demographic of second and third generation Jamaicans, Europeans, and other Caribbean islands. They will experience the fun and cultural elements the beautiful island of Jamaica has to offer, while bringing an increase to tourism and the economy,” Mrs. Clarke-Millanaise said. Tropical Vibes is the initiative of Vibes FM, a London based community radio station known for supporting Reggae, Roots and Dancehall music. Story Highlights Tropical Vibes will not be restricted to hotels, as the visitors will be taken on a range of excursions.
[dropcap]C[/dropcap]hile make plenty of appeal in the Copa America final tonight (9pm Premier Sports) with the significant boost of home advantage.Different sport, granted, but we saw only too well how a partisan crowd can pump up a player at Wimbledon last night with the heroics of Heather Watson who made a mockery of the world rankings.There’s every reason to think the crowd could make a vital difference here as well and I’m not convinced the odds would be much different if it were played on a neutral venue.Chile are certainly scoring plenty of goals in this tournament – averaging 2.6 goals in their five games but Argentina did even better than that with a 6-1 thumping of Paraguay to reach the final.Chile captain Claudio Bravo is hopeful the underdog tag can serve his side well: “We have never been favourites in any tournament and often it is good for us to feel that, because we are full of energy and enthusiasm. The word fear has not been referred to by anyone in the team, but we have the utmost respect for all the opposition teams. The headline of fear or that we were scared was established by the press and not from us.”Argentina are looking for their first major title since 1993 and erase some of the heartache from their defeat at the hands of Germany in the World Cup at Brazil last year.Chile v ArgentinaCopa America 2015 Final9pm Premier SportsHEAD TO HEAD RECORD(Maximum 10 matches)Oct 2012 World Cup Chile 1-2 ArgentinaOct 2011 World Cup Argentina 4-1 ChileOct 2008 World Cup Chile 1-0 ArgentinaOct 2007 World Cup Argentina 2-0 ChileApr 2007 International Argentina 0-0 ChileOct 2004 World Cup Chile 0-0 ArgentinaSep 2003 World Cup Argentina 2-2 ChileNov 2000 World Cup Chile 0-2 ArgentinaMar 2000 World Cup Argentina 4-1 ChileJun 1997 Copa America Chile 0-2 ArgentinaChile make most appeal at the prices.RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-50 points)BACK CHILE for 10 points at around 11/4 with Star SportsRETURN SINCE START OF WORLD CUP: PROFIT 38.18 POINTS (two Wimbledon ante-post bets outstanding)What’s your view? CALL STAR SPORTS 08000 521 321