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Omar Robinson has signaled his intent to step down as president of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association.

A new president of the Jamaica Hotel and Tourist Association (JHTA) will be elected during the annual general meeting of the JHTA to be held at the Jamaica Pegasus in New Kingston on Saturday, September 19. Speaking duringthe JHTA 59th Annual General Meeting and Virtual Market on Friday, September 18, Omar Robinson signaled his intent to step down from the post after serving for the past fouryears. "I have served as your president for the last four years. I now feel it is time for a new president to be identified to move the recovery process along. As we look to the future, I ensure your new president will continue to work for your best interest and advocate on yourbehalf," Robinson said. He thanked the membership of the JHTA for supporting him over the four terms and pledged his support for the incoming president. "I would like to thank the council, the vice presidents and the area chairs, past presidents, the executive director and ladies at the JHTA office who work behind the scenes to ensure the association functions efficiently and effectively. Thanks for your tremendous support. I promise that I will provide the same support to the new president and new administration," the outgoing president said. "Let us work to make tourism the driver of economic rebound for Jamaica. Both public and private sector need to work together to achieve this goal and help bring tourism arrivals and warnings back to pre-COVID levels in the medium to long term."

Audley Shaw

Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce, Audley Shaw, has ordered the Trade Board to find ways to improve the Jamaica Single Window for Trade (JSWIFT) portal to more easily facilitate importers and exporters. According to Shaw, in a statement on Thursday, the Trade Board is making an effort to clear the backlog of applications on JSWIFT, which is a web-based solution for traders that allows importers and exporters to apply for licences, permits, certificates and other trade-related documents. “Serious and strategic efforts are being made to address the issues being faced by importers and exporters. "We recognise the invaluable channel to growth that JSWIFT provides, and I have instructed the Trade Board to move with alacrity in addressing the backlog,” Shaw said in the statement. He said he has been getting complaints from importers and exporters about the turnaround time and efficiency of the portal, which he is concerned about, as the web-based system was designed to improve connectivity, facilitate the exchange of information between traders, customs offices and other border regulatory agencies. Shaw was appointed Minister of Industry, Investment and Commerce on Sunday. He served in the capacity of Minister of Industry, Commerce, Agriculture and Fisheries in the previous Jamaica Labour Party (JLP) administration.


American rapper Kanye West (centre) with reggae icon Buju Banton (right) and Roc-A-Fella Records co-founder Kareem “Biggs” Burke at Banton's Gargamel studio in Jamaica.

Kanye West is in the recording studio with Buju Banton. The controversial American rapper on Friday tweeteda photo of himself with thereggae starat Banton's Gargamel studio in Kingston. West is picturednext to Roc-A-Fella Records co-founder Kareem “Biggs” Burke as Banton appears to makea point in discussion with the hip-hop bigwigs. Westcaptioned the photo,"GREATNESS IN THE MAKING", indicatinga possible collaboration between the rap superstar and the reggae icon. West held a pop up'Sunday Service'in Jamaicalast October, reportedly shelling out US$1 million to host the concert at Emancipation Park in New Kingston.

Tourism Minister Edmund Bartlett hasannounced that Carnival in Jamaica organisers will forego its annual road march and related activities until April 11, 2021. In a news release late Friday evening, Bartlett expressed:“As the country enters the community transmission phase of the COVID-19 virus, we strongly believe it is in the best interest of our people, to forego hosting our annual carnival celebrations for this year. “We are mindful of the significant economic loss this will have on our country, as this event generates billionsannually, with many small and medium sized enterprises benefitting from the celebrations. However, the Government of Jamaica must continue to put strong measures in place to prevent unnecessary exposure of our people and visitors to the deadly disease,” said Bartlett. The road parade originally scheduled for Sunday, April 19 was first postponed to Sunday, October 25, due to the threat of the spread of the novel coronavirus. The decision to forego hosting the event in 2020 was made after consultation with event organisers and members of Government and is in keeping with current containment measures, the release stated. “Based on all of the professional healthcare advice, taking into account that carnival is not only a local but also an international tourism entertainment product, we have no choice but to reschedule the staging of our Carnival in Jamaica Road Parade from October 25th 2020 to April 11th 2021. This will allow us the time to do what we need to do to have a safe and enjoyable Carnival in 2021,” said Chairman of the Carnival in Jamaicastakeholders committee, Kamal Bankay. He further noted that all of the bands and fetes will honour all tickets and costumes purchased in 2020 for the 2021 staging. A revised Carnival in Jamaica calendar, including all the major fetes will follow in the coming days.


Arsenal's Eddie Nketiah, centre, celebrates scoring his side's second goal during the English Premier League football match against West Ham at the Emirates Stadium in London, England, Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020. (Will Oliver/Pool via AP).

Eddie Nketiah came off the bench to score an 85th-minute winner Saturday as Arsenal beat West Ham 2-1 for a second straight victory to open the Premier League. The England under-21 striker had only been on the field for eight minutes when he stretched to tap in a low cross from Dani Ceballos after Arsenal broke through the offside trap. Alexandre Lacazette’s 25th-minute opener for Arsenal, set up by a pinpoint cross from Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang, was canceled out by a well-worked team goal finished off by Michail Antonio just before halftime at Emirates Stadium. West Ham havelost both of theirgames so far, having been beaten 2-0 by Newcastle last weekend. Arsenal opened with a 3-0 win at Fulham.

Crystal Palace's Wilfried Zaha scores his side's second goal during the English Premier League football match against Manchester United at the Old Trafford stadium in Manchester, England, Saturday, Sept. 19, 2020. (Shaun Botterill/Pool via AP).

Manchester United werewell off the pace in theirfirst English Premier League (EPL) game of the season Saturday, losing 3-1 at home to Crystal Palace in a match featuring a converted retaken penalty following an intervention by VAR. After a short and disjointed preseason, United’s players were sluggish throughout as Wilfried Zaha’s two second-half goals earned Palace a win at Old Trafford for a second straight season. Zaha’s first goal came from the penalty spot after the referee ordered a spot kick to be retaken because of encroachment from United goalkeeper David de Gea before he saved an attempt by Jordan Ayew. De Gea didn’t have at least one foot on the goal line as Ayew struck his shot. That made it 2-0 in the 74th minute and although Donny Van de Beek’s goal six minutes later gave United hope, Zaha shrugged off his marker before firing home Palace’s third goal in the 85th. Andros Townsend put Palace ahead in the seventh minute. United had barely a month between seasons after a late finish to the 2019-20 campaign owing to theirinvolvement in the latter stages of the Europa League. The offseason has been troubled, too, with captain Harry Maguire getting arrested and being given a suspended 21-month sentence last month for assaulting a police officer and resisting arrest during an incident on the Greek island of Mykonos. Maguire has since filed an appeal against his conviction and will get a retrial on a date yet to be announced. Mason Greenwood has also been training alone after being dropped from the England squad for breaching coronavirus rules by meeting up with women from outside the team bubble while the national team was in Iceland. While Maguire started against Palace, Greenwood was on the bench and came on in the second half. Aaron Wan-Bissaka and Nemanja Matic were only deemed fit enough to start on the bench, too. Paul Pogba, who contracted the coronavirus in the offseason, struggled with the intensity of the game and gave possession away repeatedly in the second half. Earlier,Leeds wereon the right end of a 4-3 thriller in the Premier League. A week after losing at champion Liverpool by the same score line on the opening day of the season, Leeds wereinvolved in another wild contest in theirfirst home game back in the division and came out on top against fellow promoted team Fulham. Helder Costa scored in each half for Leeds, the second goal proving to be the winner at an empty Elland Road for Marcelo Bielsa’s attack-minded side. Fulham, which had two goals from striker Aleksandar Mitrovic, havenow lost back-to-back games to open the season, having already been beaten 3-0 by Arsenal. Between them, Leeds and Fulham have conceded 14 goals in four games so far. West Bromwich Albion, the other side promoted from the second-tier Championship for this season, haveconceded eight. In another game, Dominic Calvert-Lewin scored a hat trick and James Rodriguez netted his first goal in English footballas Everton beat West Bromwich Albion 5-2 in an incident-filled match featuring two red cards — including one for visiting manager Slaven Bilic. It was Everton’s second straight win to open the season — Carlo Ancelotti’s side also beat Tottenham last weekend — and it looks a team transformed with Rodriguez in the playmaker role following his offseason move from Real Madrid.