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  • High school boys shun Pepsi since 'Equal Rights'

    High school boys say they have turned their backs on popular soda Pepsi and also bag juice, since dancehall artiste Ishawna made reference to both products in her raunchy song 'Equal Rights'.

    THE WEEKEND STAR understands that since the song garnered much debate across the country and worldwide, boys attending at least one Corporate Area school have shunned the products in their canteen.

    If found consuming either of the aforementioned beverages, according to students interviewed by THE WEEKEND STAR, you set up yourself to be ridiculed by your peers.

    "Yea man a real thing, and is not our school alone. Every school it a gwaan from weh day. Is not Pepsi alone either ... all bag juice a feel it," a student told THE WEEKEND STAR, much to the amusement of his friends.

     

    No longer taboo

     

    One of the students told THE WEEKEND STAR that he usually enjoys Pepsi.

    "A really the song why mi stop drink dem thing deh still," he admitted.

    The song's impact on the consumption of Pepsi and bag juice however had no bearing on adults THE WEEKEND STAR spoke to.

    According to a group of warders at a location in Kingston, oral sex is no longer taboo and they still consume Pepsi.

    "One time gone man would a vex and want to war yuh if you mek reference to him a do dem thing deh. Right now man tek it make joke. Me still drink my Pepsi. Is either you do or you don't, so you nah fi feel nuh way bout it," one told THE WEEKEND STAR.

    A shopkeeper in the east Kingston area said people don't drink Pepsi as often as they used to.

    "But I don't think it has anything to do with the song. Or maybe (it does), I don't know, but me have it a sell," she said.

    Another vendor in central Kingston said people have other choices but some still ask for Pepsi.

    "Dem joke bout it still mi nah go tell nuh lie because of the song. It nah sell hard. If a man want him rum, him go wid the Boom still," he said.

    When contacted, the management at the popular Lama Wholesale and Aunt Jenny's Wholesale outlets, told THE WEEKEND STAR that they have not seen any specific trend stemming from the controversy of the song.

    Checks by our news team with Pepsi-Cola Jamaica Bottling Company Ltd to see if the euphoria around the song had any impact on the production and or sales did not immediately unearth any findings.

    THE WEEKEND STAR email its queries on request, however up to press time there was no official response.

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  • Nightmare! Family of three robbed of everything shortly after arriving in JA for wedding

    TODAY should have been the day Donette (surname withheld on request) celebrated with her relatives at her nephew's nuptials. However, their excitement quickly turned to anguish when her family was robbed while on the way home from the Norman Manley International Airport in Kingston.After spending eight years away from the island in the United States, Donette, her husband, and her son arrived in Jamaica Friday afternoon in anticipation of the long-awaited wedding.

    “We stopped by [a food establishment] in Portmore. We were not even in the place for 15 minutes and when we came back outside they had broken into the vehicle and our eight [pieces of] luggage were gone,” an obviously shaken Donette told the Jamaica Observer yesterday.

    “We had to leave on the first flight out the Saturday morning because we had nothing at all to wear. I never thought something like that could happen in Portmore,” she stated.

    “Everything in the suitcases was at least US$10,000,” Donette said. “My laptop, my iPad, our clothes — they're all gone. I also had some things that were for the wedding.

    “My husband is a really tall guy, he wears size 18 shoes and he had about three pairs in his suitcase. I don't know how they're gonna be able to fill those shoes,“ she continued.

    “It's just a very big loss,” she noted as she sighed heavily. “We didn't even spend 12 hours on the island. We had all the souvenirs, and those have my nephew and his wife's names on them. There were so many things that were in there, man. Five of the suitcases were over 50 pounds, so you can imagine. Everything was in there for the wedding.”

     Despite being in low spirits, Donette pointed out that, luckily, her husband had placed their travel documents in his pocket after the family came through the Customs area of the airport, as he thought they would have been required to show their documents again.

     

    A policewoman from Waterford Police Station, where the incident was reported, told the Observer that the motor vehicle's front “pivot window” was broken in order to gain entry to the vehicle.

    “I went on the scene and, honestly, I feel it for the people, because you just come from airport and you want your little patty and the eight luggage gone, plus money and everything,” she said in disbelief.

    “The car was fingerprinted and everything, [detectives from the] Scene of Crime [unit] came swiftly, but regarding the tape (closed-circuit television footage), I was told that the tape would not be available the following, day but the Monday, so I don't know what happened after that,” she continued.

    The constable, who requested anonymity, highlighted a need for better lighting and stewardship of some commercial parking areas in the community.

    “The car parks are a problem... we need to see more lights... the place is too dark,” the officer noted.

    “People need to be reminded, also, not to leave their laptops in vehicles — you can't do that. Mi nah say dem nuh have dem rights enuh, but you have to protect your things at the same time,“ she added.

    The disheartened bride, Monique, told the Observer that she thought of postponing the wedding ceremony but they decided to go ahead.

    “Most of the stuff for the wedding was coming, but I didn't feel it much for the stuff, but more about the things that my in-laws lost, because her (Donette) husband is really tall, so it would be difficult for them to find clothes out here. So I felt it more for them based on that,” she noted. “I was really looking forward to meeting them, because I've never met them in person, I just spoke to them over the phone, and based on conversation, they are really nice.”

    She said that the late-evening robbery has left the family distraught, adding that Donette had fainted the following day and fractured her knee in the process.

    “Dem do overtime, dem work hard to save up all a dem money, just to come and then just fi know say somebody just come and just do that to them, it was really devastating. Now dem affi go tek time and just try get back everything, all of eight bags, dem don't even leave one. It just terrible,” Monique said.

    Now, the family is concerned that their name and images are in the hands of the unscrupulous people who robbed them.

    “[There] were souvenirs with our images — napkins, some goodie bags and other stuff for the bridal party. The names were printed on them. There were also stuff for us — gifts and clothes,” she said. There were also clothing and other items that were in luggage to be given to children living in rural Jamaica.

     

     

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  • Jamaican scammed out of life savings by 'fake pastor' in NY

    Dorothy Edge in tears as she relays her story to journalists in New York.

    Sixty-five-year-old Jamaican Dorothy Edge who resides in the United States has been scammed of her life savings ahead of realising her goal of returning home for retirement.

    Edge, whose husband is ill, was conned out of US$28,000 ($3.6 million) by two persons on May 11, the Daily News reported.

    The woman, who did baby-sitting, compiled the money inside her Brooklyn, New York home over the years, including when she could not open a bank account.

    In recounting her misfortune, Edge said she was returning to her home in East Flatbush when a woman, who appeared to be in her 50s, approached her and struck up a conversation.

    According to Edge, the woman claimed she was from South Africa and was in the US because her uncle had died. She said the woman claimed that her uncle left her $200,000, and she wanted to make a charitable donation, but was unable do it because she had to leave the country shortly.

    Edge told the Daily News that was when the woman's partner - a man who also appeared to be in his 50s, who had a Bible in his pocket pretending to be a preacher - joined the conversation and promised to assist.

    Edge said the woman showed her documents that appeared legitimate, and claimed that 'God sent me to meet you'. She said the woman also told her that she approached her because she looked honest.

    Edge said she and the woman then accompanied the 'pastor' to his car, where he showed them what he claimed was US$40,000 in cash to prove he could be trusted.

    The two con artists then asked Edge to prove the same, and she took them to her apartment and handed over the US$28,000 she had saved up to return to her homeland.

    Edge reported that the two con artists wrapped her money in a handkerchief, ‘blessed’ it and placed it in the same bag they claimed to have put their money in.

    The newspaper reported that the two then switched the bags before handing one of them to Edge, with instructions to take back her $28,000 and take responsibility for donating the remainder.

    The elderly woman said she struggled to open the bag, and when she finally did, there was nothing but torn-up newspapers inside.

    "I can't tell you what I think, my feet became very numb. I can't see myself in the mirror," Edge said after her discovery.

    "I blame myself because I'm stupid, I'm downright stupid," Edge told the Daily News on Saturday, more than two weeks after the incident.

    "It (appeared it) was a pastor, and that was the reason I didn't suspect him," she added. "If he had come up without the Bible and everything, I would have walked away," she said.

     

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