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Daily News - 08 June 1999

Hipólito expects to sign agreements with dissident PRD candidates
Hipólito Mejia announced that he will soon sign agreements with Rafael Suberví Bonilla and Rafael Abinader, two aspirants to the Partido Revolucionario Dominicano (PRD) presidential nomination. Hipólito Mejía is by far the leading contender to win the presidential nomination. As is traditional within the party, the expected losers have pressured to ensure their piece of the cake in order to lend their support to the party's unity. Mejía has already reached agreements with Milagros Ortiz Bosch, Senator for Santo Domingo and the No. 2 ranked candidate, and with Hatuey de Camps, secretary general of the party. He agreed to support De Camps aspirations to be president of the party in the case the later does not win the presidential nomination. The party will hold its presidential primaries on 20 June. The presidential election in the DR is scheduled for 16 May 2000.

New taxes could fund raise in doctor's pay
President Leonel Fernández reached an agreement with the Dominican Medical Association to submit a bill to Congress this fall increasing taxes on guns, luxury vehicles, gambling, medical certificates and leaving the country by an airport. The departure tax would be upped from US$10 to US$20. The moneys will be used to pay for the 60% salary increase the AMD and the AMDIDSS are requesting for the state's public hospital and social security hospital physicians. It is yet to see if Congress will pass the bill. The bill would set a precedent for other government sectors that are demanding pay raises to request the creation of similar new taxes. The government reached the agreement to avert a public hospital doctors strike. Meanwhile, nurses at public hospitals are on strike, awaiting their own agreement.

100+ permits for minors to travel without parents
The Department of Migration said that it is issuing 100 to 150 permits a day for children 13 years or to be allowed to leave the DR unaccompanied by a parent. Dolores Perez Castillo, in charge of the Department of Certifications of Migration, said that Law 14-97 requires minors whose parents live abroad to request a consular power at the nearest Consulate by presenting the child's passport or travel documents, and two photos 2 x 2.
If the parents live in the DR, more paperwork is required. Required documents are:
The parents need to deposit a power of attorney of one of the two parents legalized by the Procuraduría General de la República (Office of the Attorney General).
Two photos 2" x 2" of the minor.
Passport or authorized travel document and the birth certificate if the child is Dominican.
Passport or travel document of the person who will travel with the minor. Or if the minor will travel alone, a power of attorney authorizing the airline to transport the minor.
Stamp of the Dirección de Impuestos Internos for RD$33.60 for the permit. Payment of RD$30.00 for the procedure.
All documents, with the exception of the passport of which a photocopy is allowed, need to be submitted in an original and a photocopy.
The permit is valid for three months. The inspector will retain it at the time of departure. If the child needs to re-enter the country, an additional permit must be requested.

Political and commercial propaganda removed from trees
The Santo Domingo municipality began to remove banners, posters and other material from city streets that violates ruling 46-99. The first material to go was that pegged or attached to city trees. A spokesman for the municipality said that those who post their propaganda again on the trees will be taken to justice by the city government.

Cuban physician requests asylum in DR
A Cuban physician who was on service in a public hospital in Belledere, Haiti sought asylum in the Dominican frontier town of Elías Piña over the weekend. Newspaper reports indicate that the Cuban cardiologist, Eduardo Carrecedo, was stationed in Haiti since last November as part of a United Nations program to assist indigent Haitians that had been hard hit by Hurricane Georges last year. News reports indicate that the chief of the mission had crossed over to the Elías Piña hospital to perform surgery to the wife of an employee at the hospital, violating express orders to not come into contact with Dominicans. The Cuban physician was detained under orders of Cuban security, which sent Dr. Carrecedo fleeing to the DR. Dr. Carrecedo was sent to the Migration Department in Santo Domingo for processing of his request for asylum.

President's son wants to be a Sammy Sosa
El Siglo newspaper reports that the son of President Leonel Fernández wants to imitate his father and home run star Sammy Sosa. Seven-year old Omar Leonel Fernández trains twice a week at the "Escuelita" of the Liga Deportiva Mercedes. He said he is a fan of the Licey Tigers, the city winter professional baseball league team. The President's son studies second grade at the Colegio San Juan Bautista in Santo Domingo. His two security guards also coach him in baseball. Alberto Mercedes, head coach of the league said that at first he was impressed to learn the President's son was to be on one of his little league teams. But today, Omar Leonel is just another of the players. He says that in his first game with the league, Omar Leonel batted two home runs and a single in four turns at bat.

Cabarete Race Week scheduled to start 19 June
The Cabarete Race Week, a week of windsurfing and many fun activities for participants and their family and friends, will be held for the third consecutive year in Cabarete, Puerto Plata, on the North Coast. The event attracts pros and amateurs and is scheduled to run from 19 June to 25 June. So far 85 competitors have registered from the US, Hong Kong, Brazil, the Caribbean, Europe and Latin American countries. Competition will be held in the Open Men's (19-30), Open Women's (all ages), Junior (18 and under), Masters (31-40), Grand Master's (41 and over), Sports Class (for all beginner/intermediate racers). Disciplines are Downwind Slalom and Course Slalom. There will also be a Freestyle contest. The Cabarete Race Week is governed by the rules of the PWA.
Cabarete is known as the windsurfing capital of the Dominican Republic. It has been site of major world windsurfing tournaments. During this time of the year, the wind speed ranges from 15 to 25 knots, and wind minimum for the competition is 12 knots. For more information, contact the organizers at [email protected] or call Tel. (809) 571-0324.

Puerto Rican wins world fishing tournament
Puerto Rican Humberto Donato persevered and after participating in 20 World Fishing Tournaments of the International Light Tackle Tournament Association (ILTTA) finally took home the individual champion trophy. He won the 59th version of the cup held last weekend in Punta Cana waters with a 1,100 point score. His team, Laguna del Mar, representing Venezuela, ended with 2,000 points, enough to land the team trophy. Fellow team members were Charlie Donato (the winner's brother), and Venezuelan Gaetano de Mace. Follow up fishermen were Eduardo Alvarez with 800 points, and Benito Artiñano, Dirk Van Vliet, Gaetano de Mace and Fernando Villanueva that tied with 600 points.
Sports fishermen praised the abundance of white and blue marlin and fly fish in Dominican waters.
Some 70 fishermen participated on board 23 yachts. Anglers came from the US, Costa Rica, Curaçao, South Africa, Venezuela, Puerto Rico, Mexico, Guatemala and host DR.
The Cabeza de Toro Yacht Club was the center of the tournament action, but many yachts overnighted at the Punta Cana Marina nearby. Participants stayed at Punta Cana and Bavaro area hotels.
During the World Fishing Tournament, Evelio Medero, representing the DR, was chosen president of the International Light Tackle Tournament Association. Medero replaces South African Hennie du Plessis. Other ILTTA board members are Jose Terrassa, Puerto Rico, vice president, and John Price, treasurer.
The tournament will be held next year in Puerto Rico.

Presidente Festival is overall success
Press reviews of the Festival Presidente that ended on Saturday in Santo Domingo say it filled expectations, with the exception of the only seven songs performed by Colombian Shakira on the opening day. Shakira was paid US$150,000 for the performance.
On the first day, the Festival attracted a crowd of 30,000. On day two, an estimated 45,000 showed up. On the final day, 50,000 filled the Juan Pablo Duarte Olympic Stadium to the brim.
Best performance reviews were given to Marc Anthony, Elvis Crespo and Fernando Villalona. Other very good reviews went to Victor Manuel and Toño Rosario.
The Presidente Festival is considered one of the two top Latin Music Festivals held annually in Latin America. It is sponsored by Cervecería Nacional Dominicana, manufacturers of Presidente beer.

Best of Spanish rock stars Friday, 11 June
The next event not to miss is the presentation of Spanish rock star Pau Dones and his "Jarabe de Palo", group. Jarabe de Palo's music is a fusion of soft rock, blues and AfroCaribbean rhythms. The Spaniard has been performing since he was 12 years. His tracks "La Flaca" and "Depende" are major hits among young Dominicans. Tickets costing RD$250 are on sale at Pizza Hut, Baskin Robbins and Codetel offices. They can also be requested by calling Ticket Express at 535-5272. The performance will be 11 June at 9 pm at Casa de España's soccer field.

Expo USA in June
The Commercial Section of the US Embassy is announcing its Expo USA 99 exhibition of US products and services. The exhibition will be held this year at the Hotel V Centenario from 17-19 June. For more information, contact the US Embassy at Tel. 221-2171, exts. 359 or 404.

Sammy Sosa hits his 20th home run
There seems to be no stopping Sammy Sosa who hit his 20th home run and drove in four runs in the Chicago Cubs game against the Arizona Diamondbacks in Phoenix. The Cubs beat the Diamondbacks 7-6 on Monday evening in a game in which Sosa drove in two runs with the homer and two more with a fifth-inning single past shortstop.
Sosa leads in the home run department of the National League with 20 home runs, followed by fellow Dominican Raul Mondesí, who has hit 18, and archrival Mark McGwire with 17. Sosa is two home runs behind the American League's Jose Canseco's 22. He is tied with Ken Griffey Jr.
Some 44,082 fans turned out to watch Sosa do his stuff. This was the Diamondbacks' second-largest crowd this year.

Sammy Sosa in new cartoon for next season
Sammy Sosa will be featured in a new animated television series that is being developed. Marc Platt Productions and Hearst Entertainment arranged the deal with the Major League Baseball Players Association to develop the series. Chicago Cubs' Sammy Sosa and the Baltimore Orioles' Cal Ripken Jr. will be featured in the series. Mitchell Kriegman of "Rugrats" and "Doug" fame is on board as creator and executive producer. The series is expected to be released at the start of next year's baseball season. It will tell the story of a group of baseball-loving kids who run into various players in each segment. Platt formerly headed picture production for Universal and TriStar studios. The series idea came about as a result of Platt's friendship with Ripken.

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