When the clock struck 12:00 am today, Monday, March 18, 2019, theretail prices of gasoline and diesel increased. Meanwhile the price of kerosene and liquefied petroleum gasremain unchanged. A...


Buju Banton on stage during his performance at the Long Walk to Freedom concert at the National Stadium in Kingston on Saturday. (PHOTO: Ramon Lindsay)

The Long Walk to Freedom concert is, sadly, over. It was a historic event that displayed the best of Jamaican entertainment and attracted a huge turnout. Indeed, it was worth travelling miles to see and the audience certainly had a ball. For those of you who attended and want to relive the memories, and others who weren't there but want to see some highlights, Loop Newspresents the following video recap edited by Ramon Lindsay. Enjoy!

(From left) Singer Anthony B, Chef Thia (Taste the Islands host), and Calibe Thompson (Taste the Islands producer and TTIX Yellow Cab Karaoke host).

Now pulling into its third week on air, the next episode of TTIX Yellow Cab Karaoke finds singer-turned-producer-and-cab-driver Calibe Thompson and guest rider Chef Thia, joined by reggae singer Anthony B. Together they ride around Broward county, chatting about the singer’s early life growing up in rural Jamaica, his love of studio energy, and his respect for women. Watch the episode below. For more on TTIX Yellow Cab Karaoke, visit www.ttiexperience.com or follow on Instagram @TTIXEvents. {"preview_thumbnail":"/sites/default/files/styles/video_embed_wysiwyg_preview/public/video_thumbnails/NtZPHJXBo0g.jpg?itok=OQhvE-SL","video_url":"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NtZPHJXBo0g&feature=youtu.be","settings":{"responsive":1,"width":"854","height":"480","autoplay":0},"settings_summary":["Embedded Video (Responsive)."]}


Gilman Figaro,  founder of the Sunshine Awards, will receive the Distinguished Caribbean Citizen Award from the CTO.

The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) will present its “Distinguished Caribbean Citizen Award” to Gilman Figaro, founder, and chairman of the Sunshine Awards, for promoting the Caribbean’s culture around the globe by gripping audiences with exciting and entertaining art forms, including dance, music and poetry. Figaro will be honoured during the Caribbean Tourism Industry Awards programme which recognises excellence in promoting the Caribbean and honours individuals whose outstanding, passionate and dedicated work has contributed to the development of the region. Theawards dinner takes place on Thursday, June 6during Caribbean Week New York. “The Caribbean Tourism Organization recognises Gilman Figaro’s drive for promoting Caribbean culture through the creative arts,” said Sylma Brown, Director, CTO-USA. “His untiring hard work, dedication, and commitment to positioning the Caribbean as an important region for all art forms are praiseworthy and for that reason, we will honour him with the Distinguished Caribbean Citizen Award.” Figaro was born in Trinidad and migrated to the United States two years after graduating high school. His determination to enhance the integrity and global awareness of Caribbean art forms led him to create the Sunshine Awards. This organisation recognises excellence in the performing arts, education, science and sports of the various Caribbean countries. Always placing a great emphasis on education, Figaro established the Sunshine Awards Student Recognition Programme which annuallyrecognises and applauds the scholastic achievements of the top students from selected Caribbean islands. Figaro also co-authored “Song for Montserrat”, which brought together an ensemble of 119 top performing artistes from across the Caribbean in a fundraising concert for families in Montserrat who had lost their homes during the volcanic eruption of 1995. Figaro also scripted and composed the First Annual Indo-Caribbean Music Awards for Jamaica Me Crazy Records for which he adopted a format comparable to the Grammy Awards. He produced and penned the Brooklyn Center for the Performing Arts at Brooklyn College’s First Annual Steelband Festival titled “The Pride of the Caribbean,” leading Figaro to subsequently create four shows for well-known pianists, as well as other successful musical endeavours. Driven by his passion for the Caribbean and its art forms, Figaro has received multiple awards highlighting his dedication to the performing arts, music, and Caribbean communities.

Photo: Pigeon Point Beach, Tobago.

Although loved by many, Tobago’s Pigeon Point beach is not the most liked on the island, according to user reviews on travel website Tripadvisor.com. The travel review website, which lists and allows for user-generated reviews for flights, hotels, activities and more on various countries, put the much-photographed Pigeon Point beach at third place. Heading to the sister isle? Here’s a list of the top 10 beaches according to Tripadvisor members: 10. Stonehaven Bay Ranking at number 10 is a well-known beach on Tobago’s north coast, Stonehaven Bay. “One of the nicest beaches on Tobago. Lovely bay, clean beaches, rough seas crashing onto the beach , palm trees and Waves beach bar. We stayed at Grafton Beach Resort and our room overlooked this bay - Fantastic,” said Andrew Spiers of Sheffield, UK. 9. Bloody Bay Bloody Bay, named after a violent battle during the 18th century which left the waters red with blood, the beach is now a pristine, remote, and peaceful haven. Visitors commented on the beach’s unique, if somewhat untamed, beauty. “Classic tropical beach under mountains and rainforest. Feel you're right in the wilderness and a pirate ship might appear any moment (as they did). Great birdlife and a lovely river valley to explore/ Showers and toilets and life-guard too,” said user ‘AzzaAzza’ of Scotland. 8. Bacolet Bay Beach Although named ‘Blue Haven Beach’, the correctly named Bacolet Bay beach was listed as the eighth favourite beach in Tobago. “We stayed not far from this beach and apart from the weekends when the locals arrived to play football we had it to ourselves. It is the Beach that Robinson Crusoe came ashore in the DeFoe Novel of the same name:) The Beach Bar has a limited menu but the food was excellent, home cooked and had great flavour. A great place to read and relax with a beer,” said user ‘StuartB904’ of the UK. 7. Mount Irvine Beach Mount Irvine Beach was another favourite, rated as a family-friendly beach close to hotels. “Beach Paradise - visited this beach yesterday quiet unspoilt very friendly staff glorious day not to be missed. Child friendly swimming, snorkelling,” said ‘Lowndesy2016’ of the UK. “Clear water, little current to worry you and usually very calm and comfortable water means you can swim out and enjoy the view of the beach. There is some coral and rock that attracts fish just a few yards offshore, so you can snorkel also. Definitely worth a visit,” said ‘AKP0116’ of Reading, UK. 6. Store Bay Another popular beach, Store Bay’s small but convenient access, lovely tourist shops and delicious curried crab and dumplings is a hit with visitors. “If you have never visited Store Bay food outlets you must, like Aunt Gemimers crab and dumplings.But we had a great beef burger and french fries all cooked fresh at the upstairs bar at Store Bay,” said user ‘triggy11’. “Love this beach. You can literally walk to it for the airport. Great Wifi and I always rent chairs from Jerry. Man on the Rocks is an awesome bar on the beach with amazing drinks and music. The water is crystal clear and beautiful,” said user ‘Rose J’. 5. Pirate’s Bay Named after swashbuckling pirates who visited the beach to store their ill-gained loot, Pirates Bay remains a beautifully remote, untouched paradise on Tobago’s northeast coast. Famous pirates such as Henry Morgan, Captain Finn and Blackbeard used the beach as their base for raids on Spanish fleets. Some believe there is still buried treasure at Pirate’s Bay. The beach was also part of the set of the 1960s film Swiss Family Robinson. Although hard to access, tourists said the long trip is worth it. “The Pirate's Bay is an absolute must see when visiting Trinidad & Tobago. The water is very clear and not very deep near the shore. You can even do some snorkelling when you're there. You can spend anywhere between 30 min or the whole day, so plan accordingly and enjoy. Please note that you will require some physical activity (longer walk/ stair climb) to get there,” said ‘kmsultan’ of London, Canada. “I am a little loathed to tell you all about this place, as you want to keep places like this secret, but this is paradise. An amazing beach all alone with my family and the pelicans, clear seas great for snorkelling. A great bar for cold beers and good food. The only own side was because of all of the Pelicans it smelt a bit fishy but with these views you soon forget about that,” said ‘gregdacey’ of London, UK. 4. Nylon Pool, Tobago Although not a beach per se, the Nylon Pool with its beautiful turquoise waters was also rated as a top feature. Princess Margaret named the stunning feature during a visit in 1962 after seeing its electric blue waters. Canadian user ‘Christopher B’ said the experience was wonderful. “Nylon pool reminds me very much of parts of the Bahamas. You come across this crystal clear pol in the middle of nowhere. The water is calm and in some places shallow. Totally worth doing along with Buccoo Reef.” “We visited the Nylon Pool during our glass bottom boat tour and it is a fantastic experience that I would not want to miss in my life! Warm super-clear water in a shallow sand covered shallow in the middle of the sea,” said Dr Andreas K of Germany. “We visited Nylon pool twice, it is absolutely stunning, the water is amazing & apparently I should be 18 yrs old now..ha ha ha!! Highly recommend a trip,” said Sophie O. of the UK. 3. Pigeon Point Beach The third most-loved Tobago beach is the popular tourist favourite, Pigeon Point Beach. Tripadvisor user TrishaJTC of New York, USA said the beach was picturesque and lovely. “The beach is picturesque. There are shower, toilet facilites lining the beach. Restaurants on site, ice cream sold on site, bar on site. It's ideal to spend a day. You get the glass bottom boats right on the beach as well. There is free WiFi. You won't regret the visit to this beach.” Tripadvisor ‘Q4970OJpetrak’ rated the beach as one on her bucket list. “Best Beach Ever - This one has been on my bucket list for years. I have rarely seen a better beach and I have never seen a green ocean like this one. Wow.” However Justin S of Woodbride, Virginia, was less than pleased with his experience, giving the beach a three-star rating. “To be fair, the entryway and gardens make for a spectacular view. Full of fountains and man made waterfalls, good grounds keeping that would make a golf course jealous, and cute shops, a full bar and restaurant, plus sports shop make it convenient for a family to visit. But from entry (20TT per adult just to enter) to parking your car, expect to be hounded by Frankie's Tour Boat company salesmen, who every five feet, will ask you if you want to buy tickets to see the nylon pools. On top of that, we find out later that they are ripping off tourists by selling 75TT tickets for 100TT (just over $10),” he said. 2. Englishman’s Bay Another beach often photographed as an island paradise, Englishman’s Bay is fringed by lush forests and crystal turquoise waters, along with a small restaurant featuring delicious lunches and souvenirs. “Gorgeous beach, does shelve quickly though. A porpoise came swimming up when we were there. Nice people running the beach shop Eula's,” said Tripadvisor user Mickkineavy. “Brief stop on tour-don’t miss - We did a tour and only stayed a short while but its just heaven. Pictures cannot catch the simple beauty of this place. Loved it,” said user avchell from Northampton, England. Louise Holden from the UK praised the beach’s unspoilt beauty. “We stopped off at Englishman’s Bay on our trip round the island. Wow. One of the world’s most beautiful beaches. Secluded, fringed with forest, mysterious caves at one end, strong waves rolling up the white sands, shacks selling carved coconuts and a fab restaurant with yummy fish and rotis,” she said. 1. Castara Bay Tucked away on the northern coast of Tobago, Castara’s Heavenly Bay, which includes two small beaches - Big Bay and Little Bay - were voted as number one by Tripadvisor travellers. Users referred to the natural beauty of the beach’s lush forests, untouched by commercialism. “Beautiful and relaxing. No commercialism…untouched by hotels. The most peaceful place to be. Loved every moment here,” said Tripadvisor user Pamelala from the UK. “This is the liveliest beach on Tobago, without feeling touristy. The locals and tourists alike gather here every Thursday for a beach bonfire! There are a number of places to eat, interesting shops, and a beautiful beach to hang out on or go swimming. Sunsets are also great here,” said Canadian Ryan Krieg. Others rated the snorkelling, diving and kayaking very highly as preferred beach activities at Castara, while others loved the fresh fish and Castara’s unique village charm. Have you visited all 10 beaches? Which ones are your favourite?


When the clock struck 12:00 am today, Monday, March 18, 2019, theretail prices of gasoline and diesel increased. Meanwhile the price of kerosene and liquefied petroleum gasremain unchanged. According to the press release from the Government Information Service, the retail price of gasoline will be adjusted from BDS $3.56 per litre to $3.57 per litre, an increase of 0.01 cent. The price of diesel will increase by 0.20 cents per litre, moving from $2.89 per litre to $3.09 per litre. Kerosene will continue to retail at $1.40 per litre. Liquefied petroleum gas will continue to retail as adjusted at December 2, 2018. The 100lb cylinder will retail for $163.07, the 25lb cylinder at $45.87, the 22lb cylinder at $40.53, and the 20lb cylinder at $36.84. These price adjustments are in keeping with Government’s policy of allowing retail prices to be reflective of those on the international market.

MP Dwight Sutherland on one of his Bridgetown walkthroughs. (FILE)

MESSAGE FROM THE HONOURABLE DWIGHT G. SUTHERLAND M.P. MINISTER OF SMALL BUSINESS, ENTREPRENEURSHIP AND COMMERCE IN CELEBRATION OF WORLD CONSUMER RIGHTS DAY MARCH 15, 2019 Today, Barbados joins the international community to unite consumers around the world, in celebration of the thirty-sixth (36th) anniversary of World Consumer Rights Day. The theme for World Consumer Rights Day 2019 is ‘Trusted Smart Products’. This year’s theme highlights products such as voice-assisted devices, smart phones, fitness trackers, smart TVs and other smart devices, which allow people to connect and interact with other users, other devices and the internet via different communication connections. The universal proliferation of these products over the past decade and their rapid uptake, has profoundly altered the way consumers interact with products and services and as was reported by Consumers International, there are 23.1 billion smart products globally, outnumbering people 3 to 1. According to a 2017 report by a consortium of international consumer bodies, the emergence of smart technology presents the consumer with a plethora of opportunities. These include access to new services, more responsive products, greater convenience and choice. At the same time, consumers around the world also face issues relating to lack of access to technology by some populations; privacy issues; lack of security as well as being aware of who is responsible in the event that things go awry. In Barbados, it is reported that most consumers utilize smart products as a standard means of communication to connect with loved ones and share information. It has also been observed that Barbadian consumers are inclined to be more focused on acquiring the smart products and less vigilant about some of the terms and conditions that may apply to their acquisition. Taking into consideration the desire to obtain this new technology, the incorporation and assimilation of smart technologies into the day-to-day lives of people as well as the opportunities and risks that are manifested by the new smart economy, the occasion to develop more robust consumer protection frameworks has arisen. This charge is being spearheaded by the Ministry of Small Business, Entrepreneurship and Commerce through its ancillary agencies. Taking all relevant factors into account, the Ministry continues to ensure that an enabling environment where consumers can continue to exercise their rights and responsibilities is maintained. At the same time, businesses and service providers are encouraged to ensure that consumers are provided with fair and simple contract terms and relevant information pertaining to the use and features of the smart products. This would allow the consumer to understand whether the item suits their particular requirements and ensure that even the most vulnerable consumers are able to make informed choices. Moreover, within the next few months, the Government of Barbados will be enacting Data Protection legislation with the view of leveraging new and appropriate technologies, which will facilitate business and enable efficiency and competitiveness and safeguard the privacy of individuals and businesses alike. As we celebrate World Consumer Rights Day 2019 in the changing face of technology and regulation, I must implore consumers to be shrewd and responsible for their choices, businesses and service providers to be honourable and trustworthy in their practices and the staff of the Ministry to be stewards of men and women. If we wish to make our today and tomorrows more fulfilling, we must think anew and act anew on this and any other issues before us.