shuts down temporarily to restructure
By John Collins
Barbados-based Caribbean Media Corp. (CMC), citing
“a significant decline in business activities,” ceased operations
temporarily Jan. 4 for restructuring. The announcement was made by chief
operating officer Gary Allen of the Caribbean News Agency (CANA).
decision makes 50 of the 54 media professionals unemployed with the remaining
four retained “to work on the speedy restructuring of the organization.” How
long such a restructuring will take is a matter of speculation. The shocked
staff of CANA Radio, which has been on the air for 17 years, were described as
“too stunned” to continue their work. The decision came in spite of a $5
million grant from the European Union in 2000 aimed at enabling it to provide
“The once much heralded
success story of CANA as a Third World regional news service, and which has been
proudly advertising itself with an appropriate logo on the new CMC web page that
‘only the sun covers the Caribbean better,’ is out of operation for the
first time since its establishment (25 years ago) amid much fanfare and
optimism,” said Barbados-based veteran journalist Rickey Singh, the dean of
the Caribbean press corps.
and CMC have performed yeoman service in keeping the people of the diverse
countries and states informed of timely developments throughout the region which
stretches from Suriname and Guyana on the coast of South America through the
insular Caribbean to Belize in Central America and the Bahamas, Bermuda and the
Turks & Caicos Islands in the Atlantic.
Importantly also has been the
role of CANA is keeping the various linguistic groupings in the region tuned in
to what was happening in the English-speaking Caribbean as well as the large
immigrant communities in North America and Europe.
A check of the CANA web site
announced the closure with the news wire terminated but still functioning is the
CANA newspaper wire which gives users access to more than three dozen journals
in the region.
The shutdown on CANA and CMC
comes in the continuing economic downturn worldwide following the 9-11
catastrophe. It finds publications in many parts of the world experiencing
declining advertising revenues.
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