JIS News

The 30th annual district convention of the Rotary International will get underway today, May 4 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel in Montego Bay.
The convention has been 11 months in the planning and according to Rotary International District Governor for District 7020, Keith Daley, some 1000 delegates from 11 Caribbean islands, the United States and Europe are expected for the five-day event, which will be held under the theme, ‘Lend a Hand’.
Mr. Daley, who was speaking at a press conference on May 3 at the Ritz Carlton to announce the staging of the event, said Jamaica last hosted the conference in 1999 in Kingston and he was “very delighted” that the event was being held in Montego Bay this time around. “We want everybody to get an opportunity to see Montego Bay and to share some of the wealth of the Jamaican culture with the people from the visiting countries”, he stated.
In highlighting some of the topics that would be discussed at the conference, Mr. Daley said these included health issues such as HIV/AIDS; alleviation of poverty and hunger; literacy; youth issues; persons with disabilities; and concerns of senior citizens. He noted that the conference would also be used as a training ground for the new executive for the 2004/2005 administrative year.
Meanwhile, a number of dignitaries are expected to address the conference over the five days including head of state Governor General, His Excellency the Most Hon. Sir Howard Cooke, who will be the special guest at the closing banquet on May 8, while Prime Minister P.J. Patterson will speak at the official opening on Thursday, May 6.
Industry and Tourism Minister, Aloun Ndombet Assamba, will welcome the delegates today; President of the Florida Caribbean Cruise Association, Michele Paige will address the function on March 5, while Commissioner of Police, Francis Forbes, will be the guest speaker at a special awards luncheon on Friday, May 7.
Conference chairman, Lee Bailey, has expressed the opinion that the conference was an ideal way of marketing Jamaica as a tourism destination, and one that could properly handle meetings and conventions of this nature.

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