If embattled former Education minister Ruel Reid and his co-accused are to serve jail time for the charges against them – that’s for the courts and the courts only to decide. So says renowned attorney Patrick Atkinson. “We have to allow the matter to go to court, allow the evidence to unfold. Just to assume that they are guilty because politicians say they’re guilty or persons on Facebook say they’re guilty is not how it works,” the veteran lawyer said in a recent interview. “In all the years that I have practised, whenever there is evidence, a person is usually found guilty. If there is no evidence, they’re usually found not guilty. What we need is proper investigation and evidence presented before the court.” The high-profile case (centred on shady dealings at the East Kingston-based Caribbean Maritime University) is due for mention in court again in January.
>> IAPA: Christopher Barnes appointed president
The Inter-American Press Association has a new head. Jamaica’s Christopher Barnes, Chief Operating Officer of the RJR/Gleaner Group, was named the body’s new president following their recent AGM (the 75th staging) at the Biltmore Hotel in Miami, Florida. Barnes, who succeeds Maria Elvira Dominquez, also serves as Managing Director of the Gleaner Company and Chairman of the Media Association of Jamaica.
>> Deal Complete: Sagicor acquires Advantage General following sale
“The acquisition of AGIC brings a welcome addition to the suite of products and services offered by the Sagicor Group and provides Sagicor with a solid foothold into Jamaica’s general insurance market,” President and CEO, Chris Zacca, said in a release, announcing that Advantage General is now a member of the Sagicor family following the close of sale of shares. “The consortium will now work to implement a strategy for the growth of AGIC’s business and its full integration into the Sagicor Group.”