Another earthquake have been experienced across sections of the country, reportedly close to 5:00 p.m. on Sunday. No official correspondence has yet come from the Earthquake Unit at the Universi...

Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries JC Hutchinson.

Minister without Portfolio in the Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries JC Hutchinson, has expressed a commitment to standardising the expanding bamboo industry in a way that encourages investment and safeguards protected bamboo spaces. Hutchinson said a number of local and international investors have expressed interest in the sector, particularly in manufacturing products from bamboo and feeding into the value chain. “We will, therefore, have to plan properly to have the bamboo – the raw material – to supply them. We are in the embryonic stages (with this industry) and are looking to see how we can develop this into a full-fledged economic enterprise that will drive agriculture and manufacturing,” he said. Hutchinson said the structures of the industry will involve the use of designated persons to purchase the bamboo and supply it to the factories. “In other words, it can’t be all and everybody that is supplying it. It has to be persons who are registered, and we are going to have to make sure we have the traceability of that process. It has to be structured in such a way where we find where it is coming from and see it going directly to the factory,” he pointed out. The minister said that appropriate structures are necessary to prevent areas such as Holland Bamboo from being cut to supply the market. According to Hutchinson, Chinese and American interests have indicated a willingness to invest in the sector, but noted that every effort will be made to ensure that investments include having manufacturing done locally. “We are not going to be allowing anything to be going out to be processed. We need to have the processing done here; anybody who wants to invest, they must set up the factory here and not set it up anywhere else and then take out our bamboo,” he added. In the meantime, the minister will be meeting with the National Environment and Planning Agency (NEPA) and the Forestry Department in the upcoming week. The discussions will pave the way for the development of a policy to guide the bamboo industry while protecting the country’s natural resources. The Ministry of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries, in partnership with the Bureau of Standards Jamaica will be leading the staging of the first Caribbean International Bamboo Symposium at the Jamaica Conference Centre in Kingston on November 27 and 28. The event will cover a range of concerns and is being hosted under the theme ‘Bamboo: An Economic High Value Chain Resource for the Caribbean’. Other partners in the hosting of the symposium are the International Bamboo and Rattan Organization, Tourism Enhancement Fund (TEF), Bamboo Industry Association of Jamaica (BIAJ) and the Jamaica Business Development Corporation (JBDC). For the latestnews, download our app at Android; and at IoS.

Technicians from Masters Of Property Sanitation (MOPS), Ijahneil Wilkins (left) and Raheem Williamson (right) demonstrate cleaning of a restaurant item, sanitizing and removing stains with MOPS’ High Pressurized Steam Cleaning Unit.

Guardsman Group of Companies will now offersanitation services to a range of sectors locally through the recently launchedMasters of Property Sanitation (MOPS). Operating under the Guardsman Services division, MOPS will use a pressurised steam-cleaning facility to offer hygiene services to several entities including hospitals, offices, schools and restaurants. Speaking at MOPS' lanch on Thursday at the Hope Zoo, Industry Minister Audley Shaw congratulated the Guardsman Group on identifying a niche in the market and providing the critical services of a sanitation company that could cater to the needs of several industries. In highlighting the need for Jamaica to comply with global standards Shaw said, “The importance of sanitation practices cannot be overstated especially with the thrust of standards and quality protocols that Jamaica has over the years come to embrace.” With the useof cutting-edge technology, MOPS will "make cleaning exciting", according to the company’s Managing Director Sadiq Miller. "We will use cutting-edge technology for our clients to enjoy a complete deep cleaning experience. Our steam cleaning system - which removes grease from kitchens, drains and equipment, for example – is fast and environmentally safe,” Miller said. “This will kill 99.9 per cent of germs through an ultra-low volume dispenser, using dry compressed hydrogen peroxide. It’s safe and it works well for hospital rooms, clinics, schools and busy office spaces such as BPOs,” Miller explained. MOPS’ technical teams have received extensive training, including local public health food handlers’ certification and externally accredited training from Safe Food 360 in HACCP, Cleaning and Disinfection and the Bureau of Standards of Jamaica courses, such as Good Manufacturing Practices (GMP) and Sanitation and Pest Control. MOPS will customise its cleaning service to cater to each client and utilize a whole room disinfection service, developed by UK-based firm IC Services. “It could be a specific room, a piece of equipment, or an entire office. There is no ‘one size fits all’ – we will cater to our clients’ particular needs,” Miller said. Pointing to MOPS’ comprehensive approach, he noted, “We will offer free, thorough inspections and customized proposals and action plans. We can also provide in-house training for your own sanitation team and cleaning staff and will assist you in preparing your food safety audit.” Executive Chairman of the Guardsman Group Kenneth Benjamin expressed his delight at this new addition to the company’s suite of services. “We are an industry leader in a range of sectors across the region, including landscaping, pest control and communications, as well as our guard services,” he said. “Now we are moving into a new and very important field with MOPS. We recognise that hygiene plays a critical role in our vibrant service industries, where public health and safety are so important. We are offering a fantastic solution to suit the industries’ needs.” In addition to the Guardsman Services, the group operates two attractions the Puerto Seco Beach and Konoko Falls in St Ann and the Hope Zoo St Andrew, under the Guardsman Hospitality arm. Guardsman is also widely known for its security services, which includes alarm systems, armoured courier service and guards. For the latestnews, download our app at Android; and at IoS.

'Bad Gyal' Ce'Cile whips up her shrimp pasta during the SunCity Bubble Di Pot For Charity Cook-Off at Mandela Park in Half-Way Tree recently. (PHOTOS: Marlon Reid)

Scores of Jamaicans lapped up the culinary expressions by some of the island’s entertainers who prepared various dishes in the SunCity Bubble Di Pot For Charity Cook-Off at Mandela Park inHalf-Way Tree, St Andrew recently. The annual event attracted a field of eight entertainers this year, split into two groups of four, with one group matching and blending products from different sponsors to provide breakfast for members of the public, while the other prepared lunch. The breakfast group had last year’s Digicel Rising Stars winner Short Boss, Bluugo, Climaxx and Nickeishia Barnes while the afternoon group had Ce’Cile, Stacious, Pamputtae and Superhype. For the entertainers, who were each teamed with a SunCity personality, the occasion was more than just being a chef for the day, but also about giving back to the charity of their choice, from funds raised by organisers SunCity Radio. Only the winner’s charity benefitted, with Bluugo winning the breakfast cook-off and Stacious the lunch section. Short Boss did a traditional Jamaican breakfast dish: boiled dumplings, dasheen, yam and other ground provisions, with cabbage and saltfish. He also had a vegetable mix and vegetable kebab that includes plantain, cheese and sausage. He said, “it was great. I mean mi caan cook but I went out and I did my best, but my speciality is performing so I just went and shell the place. “Anything to do with charity, helping people, helping kids, helping anybody at all, once it includes helping somebody I am on board,” Short Boss said. Likewise, Ce’Cile admitted to needing some workinside the kitchen, but said she was determined towin the event with her shrimp pasta to be able to assist her charity, the Village All Age School in Moneague, St Ann. “I will support anything that is for charity," she said, before jokingly adding "I cannot cook so maybe I will learn something or pick up a thing. I like to watch people cook and I am a great assistant.” Unlike Short Boss and Ce’Cile, Stacious was confident with her skills inside the kitchen and provided a jerk pork alfredo with garlic bread to go with rum punch. Stacious, who is also part of the SunCity family, said, “naturally anything that is charity oriented, I’m definitely on for it. My charity for this event is the physiotherapy department at the Kingston Public Hospital, where I now currently volunteer weekly. So it’s an opportunity for me to do something for them and I absolutely love cooking so it’s a perfect blend.” Main sponsors CPJ and Lasco were excited that they were able to join SunCity to deliver a top-quality event that will assist a worthy cause. Shanae Bennett, Brand Associate at CPJ, said, “we are always welcoming to any philanthropic idea, any form of charity event, so this year when SunCity approached us and wanted us to be a part of the charity programme with celebrities, there was no choice.” The CPJ stall at the event was a favourite among the gathering, with their pre-seasoned pork attracting a lot of attention. The zest shown was for all three varieties – jerk, barbecue and shoulder roast. [image_gallery] CPJ also had chef FelixNelsondemonstrating how to cook their Caribbean Kai fish, that Bennett explained could be done in six minutes, with each side getting an equal share of the time. Brand manager of Lasco, Nicole Masters, said, “Lasco is all about giving back and that’s really what we stand for as we have always looked out for the average Jamaican man, just about every Jamaican. “So when SunCity decided that they are going to do this bubble the pot and it’s a charity event, there was no hesitation on our part,” Masters said. For the latest news, download our app at Android; and at IoS.

Dancehall-reggae artiste Influential is generating a major buzz and controversy with his single, 'Pon De Live' that name-calls several dancehall artistes who have been keeping up all sorts of shenanigans on social media during the last few months. "I just wanted to do a song to show the insanity of what is doing on. A lot of artistes are making problematic statements to try to get attention, and misjudging use of social media to share personal moments, others ah show a lack of self-awareness and good sense, nuff ah dem ah overdo it and the whole Jamaica know it, so mi decide to sing about it and the response had been incredible so far," Influential said. "Mi never have a song that take off so fast, over the weekend, mi get call say it ah play inna a club in New York, everybody love the song and agree with what mi a say,crazy love mi ah get inna the streets with it, people see me and a shout 'Pon De Live'," he said. The song has racked up severalthousand views since its release lastweek. Commentators raved about the song. One said: "Have this pon repeat for 20mins straight love it. social media turning people into damn fools. Have this pon repeat!". Another one remarked: "Vegas Mekk Pastor haffy diss him pon di live....Vegas Mekk himself into a mockery." He is a firm believer in social commentary and his latest song, 'Pon De Live' focusses on the obsession with social media, and how people have been using social media to expose personal aspects of their life in a way that has never been done in the history of the world. Influential plans to amp up promotion for the song in the streets this week. "Some people already ah go put the song on their mixtapes, so it's a good look, the video is already out and doing well," he said. Influential is known for the singles, 'Road Hog', 'Suffer' and 'Cancer'. He has toured Europe and the United States as part of I Wayne's team in the past performing his songs. Born Richard Powell, he is originally from Manchester. He has had a rough life, losing his parents to cancer, being divorced and suffering numerous reversals in life. He channels his pain through his music. Now, he is trying to change how people use social media to deal with their personal pain. "Social media needs to be used in a responsible way, these people are disgracing themselves and Brand Jamaica by the way they act, dem can do better man," he said.

Usain Bolt (right) on the ball.

Uncertainty surrounds whether global sprint sensation, Jamaican Usain Bolt now has a contract offer from the Central Coast Mariners in Australia. Bolthas been on trial in his bid to become a professional soccer player. His agent, Ricky Simmsis reported to have said that the eight-time Olympic sprint gold medalist has received an A-League contract offer from the club, but the club’s manager, Mike Mulveyis reported to have said that he knew nothing of that. Simms himself declined to make any detailed comment when he was asked about the reported development, except to ‘confirm’ the existence of an offer. But Mulvey is reported to have denied knowing of a contract offer, and was said to have added to the mystery by expressing skepticism about whether Bolt could fit into the team. Bolt retired from track and field in 2017 and has since been pursuing a football career, with his latest and most sustained bid being with the Mariners. He has been on trial there forseveral monthsandscored two goals in a trial match just over a week ago. Mulvey recently said it could take until January to determine if Bolt can make it in professional football, and indicated then that Bolt was not heavily on his radar. For breaking news, download our app at Android; and at IoS.

Juventus' Cristiano Ronaldo heads the ball to hit the post during an Italian Serie A football match against Genoa, at the Alliance stadium in Turin, Italy, Saturday, Oct. 20, 2018.

Cristiano Ronaldo became the first player to net 400 goals across Europe's top five leagues. It wasn't enough on Saturday to maintain Juventus' perfect start to the season. Ronaldo, who has been accused of rape in a civil lawsuit in the United States, scored in the 1-1 draw against Genoa. It was his fifth Serie A goal in nine matches. Ronaldo has 311 goals in La Liga for Real Madrid, and 84 in the English Premier League for Manchester United. Juventus won all of its previous 10 matches across Serie A and the Champions League. Though Juve's lead in Italy was cut to four points after Napoli won at Udinese 3-0, coach Massimiliano Allegri believed this result would help his side for arguably its toughest test yet, Manchester United on Tuesday in Ronaldo's return to Old Trafford. "We drifted out of the game after a good start to the second half and, instead of making it 2-0, we let them make it 1-1," Allegri said. "This isn't good, because it's with matches like this that titles are lost. After 10 minutes of the second half we were already thinking about Manchester. We needed to have more focus. "But it's a draw that serves us well. It'll get our feet back to earth and help us understand that, to win matches, you need sacrifice and hard work." Ronaldo had last weekend off while Juventus was idle during the international break. Normally the star of his national team, he was left off Portugal's squad. Less than 20 minutes in on Saturday, he scored. There was a miscommunication between Genoa goalkeeper Ionut Radu and his defender on Joao Cancelo's cross from the left, allowing Ronaldo a simple tap-in at the far post. Genoa's first goal at Juventus since January 2013 came from Daniel Bessa with a header in the 67th minute. It was a memorable first match back in charge for Ivan Juric, who returned to Genoa for his third spell as coach. OFF THE BENCH The substitutes made the difference at Udinese. Fabian Ruiz replaced the injured Simone Verdi in the opening minutes and the midfielder scored his first Napoli goal in the 13th, curling a stunning 20-yard strike into the top right corner. Dries Mertens doubled Napoli's lead from the spot eight minutes from time after Udinese substitute Nicholas Opoku handled Jose Callejon's effort. There was still time for Marko Rog to score, just 40 seconds after coming off the bench. Napoli visits Paris Saint-Germain in the Champions League on Wednesday. SPAL MAKES HISTORY Roma fell to a surprise 2-0 defeat at home to 10-man Spal, which won at the Stadio Olimpico for the first time in Serie A in 53 years. Roma went into the international break with four straight wins in all competitions while Spal had lost its last four. However, the visitors took the lead shortly before halftime when Andrea Petagna converted a penalty after Manuel Lazzari was fouled by Luca Pellegrini. Spal doubled its advantage 11 minutes after the break as Kevin Bonifazi headed in a corner at the near post. Spal goalkeeper Vanja Milinkovic-Savic — the younger brother of Lazio midfielder Sergej — did brilliantly to fingertip Pellegrini's effort onto the bar but swiftly went from hero to villain. Milinkovic-Savic was booked for time-wasting and he received a second yellow card seconds later for petulantly throwing the ball away, leaving Spal with 10 men for the final 15 minutes. However, it clung on for its first win at Roma in the top flight since 1965. Roma hosts CSKA Moscow in the Champions League on Tuesday.