The electorate is reminded that there is one vacant seat on Legislative Council and because of this a Bye-election will take place on Wednesday 4 March 2015.  The Writ of Election will issue next week and this will state the last day and time for submitting nominations along with Polling Station details if a poll has to be taken.

In the meantime, please take time to consider who you would like to nominate to fill the vacant seat.  Further information about eligibility and procedures for nominations will be published in next week’s newspapers.

SHG

30 January 2015

Executive Council will meet next Tuesday morning, 3 February 2015, in the Council Chamber.

The meeting will be open to the public from 9.30am for the following Open Agenda item:

Request for Approval of the United Nations Development Programme – Funded Project Proposal: Tackling Domestic Abuse.

Executive Council Members are: Lawson Henry, Wilson Duncan, Leslie Baldwin, Christine Scipio-O’Dean and Derek Thomas.

SHG

30 January 2015

 

 

 

Many of you will have seen the recent articles in the international and local media concerning reports of child abuse and other sexual offences on St Helena. You will also be aware of media reporting about similar offences occurring in the UK and in other countries. St Helena is not alone in having to confront issues emanating from sexual abuse.

Let me assure you that any allegations of abuse are taken most seriously. They must be investigated and on St Helena we are doing this.

We have achieved significant progress in improving the capacity and capability of your Government to safeguard individuals and to investigate allegations. We have secured specialised resources for the police, social services and the judiciary – some are here already and we have more on the way. The results are already clear for all to see, with more cases reported, properly investigated and offenders sentenced to significant sentences of imprisonment. We are also working with our UK partners to obtain expert support to investigate historical cases and, if the necessary evidence can be found, to bring those cases to Court.

A new Safeguarding Directorate was created on 1 December 2014 with structures and resources now coming together to ensure that all of those who are vulnerable in the community are supported, not just now but into the future. We recognise too that we need better resources to help the victims of these crimes and to ensure that those who offend do not do so again.

Of course, it would be naive to think that Government can tackle all of this alone. Everyone on St Helena has a responsibility to work together to help to protect the vulnerable in our community and I urge you to come forward if you have any information that would assist the authorities.

I turn now to the very serious allegations made by two former employees of SHG who, as widely reported in the media, have alleged that the FCO, DFID and SHG conspired to cover up sexual abuse and other offences on St Helena.

In response to those serious allegations, the UK Government, with full support from SHG, quickly concluded that the only way to deal with these allegations was to appoint a strong, independent Inquiry to investigate them. The Inquiry, which I and my colleagues in Executive Council and in SHG fully welcome, is now established and chaired by respected English Barrister, Ms. Sasha Wass QC. Ms. Wass will receive 100% support and cooperation from SHG and I am entirely confident that her team will conduct a thorough and professional inquiry to establish the facts. I hope that all on St Helena will welcome them here and do everything possible to assist them as they set
about their important work. There will be announcements shortly to explain how you can contact Ms. Wass and her team should you wish to bring any matters to their attention.

Certain media reports of the allegations to be examined by Ms. Wass have mentioned a number of individuals, some of whom are serving or former employees of SHG. It is important that people should be aware that due to ongoing legal proceedings in the UK and to avoid cutting across the work of Ms. Wass, those identified are, at this point, unable to reply to the allegations. Of course, that position will change once those constraints are removed.

In closing, I know that many people – here and overseas – were dismayed by some of the media reports over the past year. While I think we must be prepared to see more uncomfortable media reporting in the weeks and months to come, St Helena has a resilient and proud community that I feel sure will emerge from this stronger and with renewed confidence.

Governor Mark Capes
29 January 2015

Due to the recent hot weather, the Roads Team has been treating the effects of overheated roads around the Island. The bitumen in the roads will start to melt when the road temperature reaches over 50 degrees Centigrade.

The Roads Team will apply dust to heat affected roads and warning signs will be placed on the affected sections.

Please drive carefully when travelling on the treated roads, as you may potentially experience skidding on the treated surface, especially when travelling around bends.

Enquiries about this work can be made to telephone number 23640 during normal working hours.

Thank you for your cooperation.

SHG

28 January 2015

 

 

It was announced yesterday that HM Customs would be closed on Friday 30 January 2015 between 8.30am and 11.30am for cargo and baggage collection.

HM Customs would now like to advise the public and merchants that due to a change in circumstances, the service will not be closed and instead baggage and cargo may be collected as normal.

HM Customs apologises for any confusion.

No baggage or cargo will be issued on Saturday 31 January 2015 due to dealing with baggage from embarking passengers and passenger embarkation itself. Business will then resume as normal on Monday 2 February 2015.

SHG

28 January 2015

 

 

 

 

The public will be aware that outpatient clinics in the outlying districts have been temporarily out of operation due to staff shortages at the Hospital, and in the immediate term these clinics will remain closed.

Taking into account the problems these closures have created for some patients – those having to travel to Jamestown to see the doctor – from Tuesday 3 February 2015, the Hospital will be offering a free bus service to people who have an appointment in Jamestown on Tuesday and Thursday mornings. These patients will be transported to the Jamestown outpatient department.

Bus times for patients in the country are as follows:

Levelwood – Tuesdays

A bus will collect persons in Levelwood, leaving at 9am from the Flag and then stopping at Silver Hill Shop, Levelwood School, Woody Ridge, Alarm Hill, and Wells, going on to Jamestown by 10am.

Longwood – Tuesdays

A bus will leave Longwood Green at 10.30am, stopping at Longwood Gate, Longwood Clinic, Hutts Gate, the Alarm Forest Police Post, going on to Jamestown by 11am.

The bus will leave Jamestown at 11am to take Levelwood patients back to their area, before returning to the Hospital to collect Longwood patients.

Sandy Bay, St Paul’s and Half Tree Hollow (HTH) – Thursdays

For patients who attend the HTH Clinic, a bus will leave Sandy Bay Chapel at 9am, stopping at Bamboo Hedge, Milestone, Sandy Bay Community Centre, White Gate, Rosemary Plain, Cleughs Plain, and New Ground – going on to Jamestown by 10am.

The bus will then return to Red Hill, departing at 10.30am and stopping at Half Way, White Wall, HTH Clinic and HTH Community Centre on the way into Jamestown.  It will then return patients to Sandy Bay and St Paul’s, before returning the HTH patients.

This arrangement will continue until the outlying clinics resume normal operation.

The public is thanked in advance for their continued understanding and cooperation.

SHG

27 January 2015

 

HM Customs advises the public and merchants that cargo and baggage will not be available for collection at the Wharf between 8.30am and 11.30am on Friday 30 January 2015 (because of a meeting).

Cargo and baggage collection will resume at 11.30am (to 5.30pm) on the same day.

No baggage or cargo will be issued on Saturday 31 January 2015 due to dealing with baggage from embarking passengers and passenger embarkation itself. Business will resume as normal on Monday 2 February 2015.

HM Customs would like to thank the public and merchants in advance for their cooperation.

SHG

27 January 2015

 

 

SHAPE Clients with their Awards
SHAPE Clients with their Awards

An awards ceremony was held at the Jamestown Community Centre on Tuesday, 20 January 2015, organised by Lifelong Learning Services (previously AVES). Attending the ceremony was Director of Education & Employment, Colin Moore, the Education and Employment Committee, awardees and invited guests.

The ceremony awarded certificates to recipients who have completed Functional Skill Maths, English Entry Levels (1-3 and 1 & 2), GCSE Maths, GCSE English Language and Literature, GCSE Statistics, GCSE Accounting and GCE Advanced Level English.

In his speech on the day, Colin Moore commented on the accomplishment of all recipients:

“On behalf of the Directorate I would like to thank you all for your hard work and congratulate you on your deserved success in achieving your certificates. Adult learners are just as important as pupils and students in school and all of you are a real credit to the Island for the way in which you are self-improving.

Awardees
Awardees

“As Director of Education, I would now like to set each and every one of you the challenge of coming back next year to gain further qualifications and show the wider community the talent, energy and continued commitment to lifelong learning that you have so confidently demonstrated today. Well done to everyone!”

One of the highlights of the ceremony was the awarding of certificates to clients from SHAPE for completing Entry Levels in Functional Maths.

Deputy Director of Lifelong Learning Services, Kerry Yon, concluded:

“What a positive occasion and a great opportunity to celebrate the achievements of so many certificate recipients. Congratulations to all learners.”

 

SHG

27 January 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marc Lockley
Marc Lockley

Recently arriving on-Island on 16 January 2015, was Marc Lockley (photo attached) to take up the temporary position of St Helena Government Procurement Advisor, while the substantive post holder, David Woosey, is off-Island working on air and shipping tenders. Marc is contracted for nine months to provide support to SHG procurement projects.

Marc will work closely with Corporate Finance and other SHG Directorates, supporting SHG on key projects, such as the General Hospital, Prison, Fire Station and Roads projects – ensuring compliance with regulations and that tender routes deliver value for money.

Marc will be joined by his family in February. He commented:

“I hope to put my procurement skills and knowledge to the benefit of the Island, as well as taking part in all the activities St Helena has to offer. I am enjoying my time here and everyone has been very welcoming.”

Previously Marc has worked in the construction, finance and healthcare sectors in both public and private sector procurement roles.

SHG

27 January 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

Councillor Lawson Henry departs the Island on Friday, 6 February 2015, to attend a series of trilateral meetings, the Ministerial Conference and the 13th OCT-EU Forum (Overseas Countries and Territories – European Union) in the British Virgin Islands from 25-27 February 2015. Councillor Henry will be accompanied by SHG UK Representative, Kedell Worboys MBE, and Tristan UK Representative, Chris Carnegy.

Councillor Lawson Henry
Councillor Lawson Henry

Agendas for the meetings are still being finalised but there will be discussions around regional cooperation and the 11th European Development Fund.

This will be the second time Councillor Henry has attended these meetings, having previously taken part in 2013.

Councillor Henry said:

“I was elected by Executive Council to attend this Forum as (having previously attended) we recognise that continuity is important. As always I am honoured to be part of the delegation to represent St Helena.

“The EU is important for us on St Helena and we are fortunate over the years to have received significant EU funding. On this visit we will update the Commissioner on what we are doing with the current EU funding and what our plans are for the next round in 2016. 

“I am looking forward to taking part in the discussions and ensuring that St Helena’s voice is heard.”

Councillor Henry will return to the Island on Wednesday 11 March 2015.

SHG

27 January 2015