The National Trade Union Centre (NATUC) is condemning what it has described as the blatant violation and total disregard for the fundamental rights of Radio Jaagriti, to be heard. This in respon...

Carnival may be over in Trinidad and Tobago but it is now gearing up in other islands which always sparks a debate about the quality of our offerings. With claims from many quarters that Carnival 2019 was a success,Looptthas joined forces with the Trini Good Media team of Franka Philip and Ardene Sirjoo to review the season past and examine a few areas to determine what worked, what failed and what we can improve upon. In this first installment, we talk about fete management with Paige De Leon of the Fete Promoters Association, Jules Sobion of Caesar's Army and Brevard Nelson, President of the St Mary's College Past Student's Association. A lengthier version of this discussion will be available soon on TGM's podcast. Thanks to Uncorked for providing the location.

The V Band is a new concept from carnival entrepreneur Kandi King.

Kandi King is on a mission to become the go-to person for all things Carnival. And with her new concept, she has just taken a giant leap to fulfill her mission. King, a Jamaican national who runs a Carnival concierge service called Karnival by Kandi, has created a new line of stockings that many Carnivalistas probably didn’t know they wanted but would surely need. The unique aspect of her stockings is that they are made with V-shaped waistbands, which makes them the ideal accessory for miniscule bikini bottoms without the waistband showing. A Director for the Xaymaca band,King was actually inspired to make her V Band stockings, a design she has registered with the Jamaica Intellectual Property Office, after attending Carnival in Trinidad and Tobago this year. Kandi King “I was looking at photos after Carnival and every photo I saw the waistbands showing. I said this is a problem, why isn’t the waistband in a V so the waistline isn’t showing?” she said. She did some sketches and shopped around for a supplier until she found one who agreed to do it. The first batch is yet to land in Jamaica ahead of Carnival on April 28 but already, King has orders from all over the world. “The demand has gone through the roof…I am a little bit surprised…people from all over the world are messaging, the demand is way more than I could supply right now,” she told Loop. The stockings come in five colours to match different skin tones. There is the Kaviar, the darkest shade, Kookie, which she described as an in-between colour, Kandi, which matches her shade and Kupcake and Koral which are lighter shades. The stockings would only be available in one size for now. King said Jamaica Carnival would be her testing ground as she assesses how well the stockings hold up before she tweaks to include bigger sizes, other colours, and patterns. For now, only fishnets, which are hugely popular for the Carnival, would be available. King said she never had her eyes on producing accessories but this has certainly stirred something in her and opened opportunities to do even more. She said with Carnival in Jamaica expanding, the market for accessories and other Carnival products is growing with more people seeing commercial opportunities in the festival. Check out Kandi King's stockings on Instagram at@stocKINGbyKandi

A Glock pistol, a magazine and quantities of ammunition and marijuana were discovered by officers of the La Horquetta CID, Crime Patrol and K-9 Unit, during an anti-crime exercise conducted in the district between 4pm and 10pm, on Thursday. During the exercise, officers acting on information, proceeded to Anthony Williams Drive, Phase 5, where they conducted a search of an abandoned structure. The search resulted in the firearm, magazine, ammunition and 371 grams of marijuana being discovered wrapped inside a t-shirt. Investigations are ongoing.

A 33-year-old Marabella father has appeared in court charged with burning and beating his three-year-old son after he was unable to write a letter of the alphabet. Marcus John appeared in the San Fernando Magistrates’ Court on Thursday. He was remanded into custody until Wednesday. John was charged on Thursday by WPC Nicole St John under the Children’s Act. According to reports, the accused reportedly placed the child’s hand over an open flame in December 2018 and on another occasion on March 30, he struck the child in his eye after he was unable to write a letter of the alphabet. John allegedly also hit the toddler with a ruler on the mouth. The child remains warded at hospital.

The stinking toe (PHOTO: iStock)

Stinking toeis the fruit of the West Indian Locust, one ofthe largest trees in the Caribbean. The fruit is held within a large brown pod that is shaped somewhat like a toe and, when the shell of the pod is broken, a repugnant odour is released - hence the name, stinking toe. The fruit and the tree it grows on are botanically known as Hymenaea courbaril. The stinking toe shell of the pod is very hard and is about five centimeters thick.Within the shell is a cream-coloured, powdery flesh. The texture is very dense and dry and the flavour is sweet, like powdered sugar. The bark, leaves and flowers of the West Indian Locust tree have long been consumed by indigenous tribes in the South American, Brazilian, Peruvian, and Central American rainforest, particularly the Karaja Indians and the Creole of Guyana. In Jamaica, the stinking toe is a largely underrated delicacy, with lots ofnutritional andmedicinal benefits. The fruit is very low in calories, and high in carbohydrates. It hasbeen said to be an appetite enhancer, and an aphrodisiac. Itis high in vitamin A and iron, and studies done on the flesh of the fruit show that it has antimicrobial, antifungal and antibacterial properties. Outside of tropical Mexico, Central and South America, stinking toe trees grow in Jamaica and in some of the Caribbean islands. The trees are also grown by some rare and tropical fruit growers in Southern California. Some of this information was taken

From left: Simon Baptiste, CEO Question Mark Entertainment, Nichol Narwani Daniel, Director Dream Big Foundation, Marsha Caballero, VP Corporate Communications, TSTT and Carolyn Pasea Pogson, MD, Question Mark Entertainment.

Since its inception, the Dream Big Foundation has created opportunities for creatives to mentor and learn with some of the best in the business abroad. Now, the Foundation is expanding its reach with the Bmobile Dream Big Career Expo and Conference on May 3 and 4 designed to help young people find their career path. Speaking at the launch of the event on Wednesday at Queen’s Park Oval, Simon Baptiste, Chief Executive Officer of Question Mark Entertainment, founders of the Dream Big Foundation, said the Career Expo and Conference won’t guarantee a dream job but it will be a conduit for those who dream big. He said the conference is expected to draw over 3000 students from across Trinidad and Tobago while the Expo is expected to attract about 5000 people. The event will be held at the Centre of Excellence in Macoya, which Baptiste said is the size needed to accommodate the audience they are hoping to attract and gives them a chance to move out of Port-of-Spain to capture attention in the East. The Dream Big Expo and Conference is a spin-off of Decibel, the annual Entertainment Festival for teenagers. The Dream Big Expo and Conference will cater for a 16 to 35 demographic. Baptiste said they always had plans to be more than an entertainment company and the Dream Big Foundation was created to engineer change. Nicole Narwani Daniel, Dream Big Foundation Director, said through their school tours in which over 100 schools were visited, they got to learn about young people and realised many of them do not know what is there for them. The event, she said, will expose attendees to a variety of careers and not just those in the entertainment field. She revealed that some of the vendors at the Expo will be coming with the intention to recruit job seekers. Baptiste said they are aiming to create an expo space that is energising and exciting and he urged vendors to find a fun way to demonstrate what they offer. The Dream Big Expo and Conference is sponsored by Bmobile, the title sponsor, Republic Bank, One Caribbean Media, and LJ Williams Limited. Entry to the Expo is $100 but students who pre-register on the Dream Big website by April 30 will receive free admittance.

A US Customs officer stole cash from at least 100 passengers at John F. Kennedy International Airport while searching their handbags, federal authorities allege. This according to an online article on NY Daily News on Thursday. Thirty-nine-year-old Joseph Cialone admitted he targeted “deep handbags” when he searched international fliers because it was easier to hide his hands as he snatched $100 bills and shoved them into his latex gloves, according to a criminal complaint. U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents first learned of his thievery on March 26, when a woman on a Jet Blue flight from Trinidad and Tobagonoticed an envelope in her bag was light on cash, authorities said. She stuffed it with $350, but found just $250 after she went through a customs inspection, prosecutors said. She filed a complaint the next day, and surveillance footage showed Cialone pull out the envelope and put it back into her handbag. As he continued searching the satchel, he took his hand out in a closed fist, shed the latex glove and stash it in his pocket. After he finished the inspection, he headed toward the bathroom, the complaint alleges. Agents with Customs’ Office of Professional responsibility started looking at more video, and realized he probably ran the same scam on 11 more women between March 17 and April 16. The agents watched Thursday as he stole two more $100 bills using the same latex glove trick, and when they pulled him into a private room, he admitted to at least 100 thefts over the past year. Cialone, of East Meadow, L.I., was released Thursday on a $50,000 bond.

This 2011 electron microscope image provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows H3N2 influenza virions.

Three months ago, this flu season was shaping up to be short and mild in the U.S. But a surprising second viral wave has made it the longest in 10 years. This flu season has been officially going for 21 weeks, according to reports collected through last week and released Friday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. That makes it among the longest seen since the government started tracking flu season duration more than 20 years ago. Some experts likened the unusual double waves to having two different flu seasons compressed, back-to-back, into one. "I don't remember a season like this," said Dr. Arnold Monto, a University of Michigan researcher who had been studying respiratory illnesses for more than 50 years. The previous longest recent flu season was 20 weeks, which occurred in 2014-2015. Flu can cause a miserable, relatively mild illness in many people and a more severe illness in others. Young children and the elderly are at greatest risk from flu and its complications. Flu vaccinations are recommended annually for all but the very young. The current season began the week of Thanksgiving, a typical start time. At the beginning, most illnesses were caused by a flu strain that tends not to cause as many hospitalizations and which is more easily controlled by vaccines. But in mid-February, a nastier strain started causing more illnesses and driving up hospitalizations. Not helping matters: The harsher bug is not well matched to the vaccine, said the CDC's Lynnette Brammer, who oversees flu tracking. Still, this flu season is not nearly as bad as last winter's 19-week season, the deadliest in at least four decades. An estimated 80,000 Americans died of flu and its complications last season. The CDC is estimating that flu-related deaths this season in the range of 35,000 to 55,000. More good news: Brammer said that although the virus is notoriously unpredictable, signs suggest this flu season should be over soon. "It's on the verge" of being over, she said. "If nothing changes."