Tasha Cobbs – Your Spirit ft Keira Sheard

Performing At Jazz In The Gardens 2018!

For Tasha Cobbs, it all began in her hometown, Jesup, Georgia. There she functioned as Worship Leader of Jesup New Life Ministries, founded by her late father, Bishop Fritz Cobbs. Tasha faithfully lent her talents at her local assembly before an unforeseen relocation to Atlanta, Georgia, where she joined the thriving dReam Center Church of Atlanta. Most of her tenure at dReam Center entailed leading worship weekly and managing the various entities of the Worship & Arts Department. She now serves as one of the team pastors at dReam Center.

In 2012, Cobbs would go on to record her freshman project titled GRACE, produced by multi-award-winner and Motown Gospel label mate, VaShawn Mitchell. This project laced with organic and moving tracks featured the lead single, Break Every Chain, which landed as Billboard’s #1 song for a total of 12 weeks. This anthem unleashed liberation to countless audiences nationwide each time it was heard or ministered. The album Grace landed on Billboard’s Top 10 Gospel Albums chart for a year. It was definite that the world had received not just another singer, but a rare gift.

Road Ready | The countdown is on — 99 days to Bahamas Carnival

Yesterday the 100-day countdown to Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival began. As I changed out of my street clothes and into my regular workout gear at the gym, I overheard the utterances of some fellow gym-goers. They knew the 100-day countdown was on, and they were getting their bodies prepared.

But even with only 100 days left until Bahamians and visitors take to the streets of New Providence for the fourth Bahamian carnival, several things remain outstanding.

Firstly, only one band has had an official launch event and presented its costumes. Last weekend, Euphoria Madness took over Margaritaville on Paradise Island to show-off its carnival costumes to the general public for the first time.

We have yet to see launch events from the big two bands — Bahamas Masqueraders and Enigma. But an ad in The Nassau Guardian yesterday revealed that their official launch events are both to be held next month. Bahamas Masqueraders plans to launch on February 23 and Enigma on February 24. The smaller band, Xtasy, has planned its launch event for days before the big two, on February 3.

The other thing that is missing is that there has been no real buy-in from government, and that has lots of people worried. But it shouldn’t. The show will go on.

The carnival bands have vowed to gain permission for the road, and we will chip down the streets as we have done for the past three years.

The Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival has received rave reviews from visitors and soca artists who have come to perform. As one of the newest carnivals on the global carnival circuit, that is something to be proud of. But with the government leaving the concert segment completely up to the private sector this year, it is yet to be seen how it will stand up to the multimillion-dollar productions of previous years, the productions that left the country with a “hangover” in its pockets, costing almost $30 million over three years.

The Free National Movement (FNM) government has vowed not to throw any money behind Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival 2018. But that is okay!

Carnival 2018 is sure to see the spawning of fetes in lieu of three days of concerts. The carnival could become a something-for-everyone-type of atmosphere across New Providence, instead of the tailored concerts in a “cultural village”.

It should have been expected that the government could not continue to hemorrhage millions to sustain Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival. Now, it will organically take on a life of its own. And it seems the private sector will have to take on the entire business of Bahamas Junkanoo Carnival if it is to continue as an annual festival. The question is will it grow?

Blue Monkey’s Bahamas Carnival Cruise continues to grow, if that’s any indicator of the interest Americans have in coming to The Bahamas for Carnival.

Come what may, we will bring them to the starting line, turn the music up, fill their cups and show them the time of their lives. So hit the gym, guys and gals – we have lots of work to do.

For articles like this and more, Pick up A copy of The Nassau Guardian.

Headlines: Bed crisis at PMH

To tackle what is being described as a crisis of bed shortages at Princess Margaret Hospital (PMH), Minister of Health Dr. Duane Sands said yesterday that elective surgery will be discontinued indefinitely as of today until the shortage eases.

Seventeen patients were admitted to hospital on Wednesday, but there were no beds “anywhere in the hospital” to accommodate them, a consequence of an increased number of boarders taking up beds and the 67 beds that remain out of commission, Sands said.

Ambulances were also lined up outside and could not offload patients because, in addition to the shortage of beds, there were no trolleys to transfer patients to and from the operating rooms.

“There is no simple fix to this,” said Sands, when contacted for comment.

“We’ve incorporated space that had been decommissioned.

“We have people in the old operating theater.

“We have people in the old intensive care unit.

“We have people in the old recovery room.

“We’ve created multiple virtual wards in the hospital.”

He added, “God forbid we have a mass casualty event.”

Sands said renovations on the out-of-commission wards began more than a year ago, but construction came to a halt due to a lack of funding.

“We have been challenged to identify the funding because, again, all of this funding shortfall would have been accumulative,” the minister said.

“In my budget presentation I would have spoken about budgetary charges from the last fiscal year of roughly $20 million, plus commitments for this year of almost $80 million.

“And identifying all of those funds, relevant to the total indebtedness of the government has been challenging, so as we were able to deal with certain items outstanding in terms of payables, we would have dealt with it.”

The hospital has discharged more than 30 of its boarders, but their families have either refused to collect them or claimed they simply cannot care for them, according to the minister.

To resolve the long-standing problem, renovations are underway on one of the wards, which is expected to bring 24 beds back in service by April.

“I would have toured that ward today and they are putting in flooring.

“It is virtually completed, once the flooring is completed.

“The light fixtures are in.

“There is some wood work to be done, and then beds, and so on and so forth.”

Sands said the boarders need to be moved out of the hospital, as they pose a “serious challenge” to new patients, but this is also not an easy fix.

Some of them can be moved to specialized nursing homes if there were subsidies, he said.

But Sands said again, the problem is finding funds that have not been budgeted.

Asked whether PMH may have to consider putting those who have been discharged out of the hospital, the minister said, “Notwithstanding the horrendous implications for healthcare that the hospital and the people of The Bahamas are being held hostage by some social realities, usually during the holiday season this type of thing spikes.

“Some people find it convenient to leave their elderly or infirmed loved ones in hospital.

“We might not want to accept that is life in The Bahamas, but it is.”

Sands said, as minister, he is committed to resolving the problem, but it will require some unpopular decisions and outcomes.

“Notwithstanding the fact that there will be cries [of] ‘You’re the minister, fix it’, some of the fixes require some unpopular medium and long-term decision making.

“One of the most important things is we need to have additional revenue in order to do what needs to be done, and that revenue ultimately has to come from the public.”

He added, “Yes, we have a plan. Yes, we are implementing the plan.

“But it is not going to be a comfortable ride because, having made the decision to cancel elective surgery, there are some people who have been waiting months for that surgery.”

Four of the 20 ICU beds have also been shut down because there are only enough nurses to care for 16 patients, according to Sands, who said he planned to meet with the entire body of the nurses union yesterday evening to see how best to address these long-standing challenges.

“As we utilize nursing staff for more and more overtime and as you lose more and more nurses, the problem becomes self-perpetuating,” he said.

According to Sands, inadequate revenue performance has also compounded the problem.

He said on average the Public Hospitals Authority (PHA) collects less than $5 per patient per annum.

The vast majority of the 60,000 patients who receive emergency care per year do not pay.

In the meantime, patients who visit the hospital with non-life threatening matters will be deferred until the bed shortage improves.

Sands said this is the reason the PHA has advised the public to use the outlying clinics preferentially, as the wait times at PMH are up to 12 hours.

For more articles pick up a copy of The Nassau Guardian

Get Familiar: Soca Kingdom – Machel Montano Ft Super Blue

Carnival is coming, get familiar with the sounds of soca 2018, courtesy of the soca monarch himself, featuring veteran feter Super Blue.

Artist: Machel Montano x Superblue
Title: Soca Kingdom
Produced by: Travis World
Composers/Writers: Joseph “Prince Pronto” Figueroa, Travis Hosein, Machel Montano, Austin Lyons & S Joseph
Live Percussion by Rhys Thompson
Recorded By Travis World & David Sheppard at Sheppard Pro Studios, Trinidad & Tobago
Mixed by Cole Nystrom
Mastered by Dave Kutch at Mastering Palace, NYC
“Soca Kingdom” samples “Look The Devil Dey” composed by S Joseph, music and arrangement by Charlie’s Roots & Pelham Goddard
Publishers: Joseph Figueroa (COTT)/Travis Hosein (COTT)/Masuso Publishing (COTT/BMI) c/o Warner Chappell Music Canada/Austin Lyons (COTT)/S Joseph (COTT)

Long Islanders ‘very disappointed’ about RBC pullout

The local community in Long Island is “very disappointed” by the recent announcement that services offered by Royal Bank of Canada’s (RBC) Gray’s location on the island will no longer be available effective April 13, according to a Long Island Chamber of Commerce director Mario Cartwright.

Speaking with Guardian Business yesterday, Cartwright said businesses will “suffer” from RBC’s pullout from the island, since the only banking services now available would be Scotiabank’s satellite branch that is open two days out of the week.

“They (RBC) have made many millions of dollars, so the local community feels that they are being treated very shabbily by Royal Bank,” said Cartwright.

“We are in a predicament now where we have commercial businesses that will have cash deposits to make and at this early stage, we don’t know how we will continue doing that, because the initial report is that the bank is pulling out all together.

“So, where do we deposit our money? That’s a major concern to us. It is going to be quite a dilemma.”

Cartwright added that the pullout of a major bank from an island could send a “negative message” to second homeowners and investors.

“I regret to say it but it seems like the island is dying. I received many calls. The majority of businesses are baffled by all of this. They want to know how this will affect their business and how it is going to affect the future of Long Island.

“There is much unrest up in Long Island with this issue.”

Long Island MP Adrian Gibson told Guardian Business the total withdrawal of RBC from the island is “quite troubling” to the business community and the island in general.

Gibson claimed that web shops are “likely” contributing to the withdrawal of banks on the island.

“Banks make fees via transactions and loans. But the numbers houses are allowed to carry out free transfers and banks are somewhat eliminated out of the picture,” said Gibson.

“We have to properly regulate the proliferation of these numbers houses.”

Island Luck announced last year in November that it had “implemented systems and procedural changes” to stem the practice of customers using its system as a money transfer mechanism for inter-island remittances within The Bahamas.

For More Articles Pick Up A Copy Of The Nassau Guardian