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Daily News - 08 November 1999

City mayor requests payment to clean city
Santo Domingo Mayor, Johnny Ventura says he is worried that Santo Domingo will not be looking its best for the celebration of the Africa, Caribbean and Pacific Summit of Heads of State and Government this coming 25-26 November. He said there is no guarantee the city will be clean unless the government pays the RD$90 million in arrears it has with Dixi Sanitary Services. President Leonel Fernandez has said the government will be making payments as soon as the legal impasse between Urbaser and Dixi Sanitary Services is resolved and it is clear who is the owner of the contract to collect 80% of the garbage in Santo Domingo.
Around 70 heads of state and government are expected in Santo Domingo for the event. The city of Santo Domingo has 80 avenues, 1600 kilometers of streets, an extension of 280 square kilometers, and 2.7 million inhabitants.

Hiring of Haitians violates Dominican Labor Code
President Leonel Fernández is of opinion that Dominican labor laws should be respected in regards to the hiring of Haitians. The Dominican Labor Code establishes that the work force of any company should be 80% Dominican, and a maximum 20% foreign. In the case of many construction projects, including many large government projects, the reverse is true. President Fernández's opinion comes after Minister of Public Works Diandino Peña said that Haitian workers were essential for the completion of large government construction works. The Dominican government is probably the principal employer of Haitian construction workers.
In Hoy newspaper, Rafael Ulises Alcántara, secretary general of the Sindicato de Obras Viales Calificados, says Dominican construction jobs are down 90%. He said that contractors are only interested in savings when they hire the cheaper Haitian labor, forgetting that the hiring of this unskilled workforce may affect the quality of the construction.

Making it easier for expatriates to get their voting cards
The Junta Central Electoral, the government body in charge of organizing presidential, congressional and municipal elections in the DR, announced that it has set up a special branch with instructions to expedite the issuing of the ID and voting document to Dominicans who live abroad. The new center is located at the Junta Municipal del Distrito Nacional. This branch also makes it possible for businessmen to make an appointment to go through the procedure for getting their cédula.
The president of the JCE, Dr. Manuel Ramón Morel Cerda said that the JCE has installed 238 centers nationwide for the issuing of voting cards. He said that 3,570,000 citizens have applied for their cards at these centers, and 2,150,000 have obtained their cedulas. The centers have capacity to attend 21,000 persons per day, and average 14,000 per day, he told Hoy newspaper.

OPIC appoints Baninter its correspondent bank
The Overseas Private Investment Corporation has signed an agreement with the Banco Intercontinental (Baninter) for correspondent bank services. George Muñoz, president and chief executive officer of the corporation, was in Santo Domingo for the bank announcement of the event. OPIC encourages American private business investment in developing countries, newly emerging democracies and free market economies. The Baninter held a reception for Muñoz that was attended by President Leonel Fernández and Vice President Jaime David Fernández.
El Siglo newspaper reports it is the first time that OPIC signs an agreement of this kind with a bank that does not have net US capital. The president of Baninter, Ramón Baez Figueroa said that the financial agreement is a recognition to the DR by foreign investors and international finance agencies. He believes the agreement will be important to attracting new foreign investment that will result in an increase in jobs, exports and the advent of new technologies that wil help make DR companies more competitive.

Hipólito 51%, Danilo 26% and Balaguer 20%
The El Siglo poll carried out by the US polling firm, Penn, Schoen & Berland (24-31 October 1999) shows that Partido Revolucionario Dominicano presidential candidate Hipólito Mejía has 51% of the vote in the first round of the May 2000 presidential election. The percentage would be enough for the PRD candidate to win the presidency. The Dominican Constitution, modified in 1994, establishes that a minimum of 50%+1 of the vote is necessary to win in a first round.
The same survey shows the government party, Partido de la Liberación Dominicana candidate, Danilo Medina, far behind with 26% of the vote. Joaquín Balaguer, who is expected to be the candidate for the Partido Reformista Social Cristiano, would receive 20% of the vote. 1,004 potential Dominican voters were polled.

Ilianov on his way to recovery
Ilianov de León Alvino, the 14-year old boy who won the hearts of Dominicans who contributed almost US$750,000 for his bone marrow operation in New York City is recovering. El Siglo newspaper reports his condition is satisfactory. The operation took place on Friday, 5 November at the Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center. Ilianov has surpassed the first critical 48-hour period. If all goes well he will be out of the hospital in six weeks.

Woman gives birth in Las Americas Airport parking lot
Ramona Méndez, a poor resident in nearby La Caleta, visited Las Americas International Airport on Friday, 5 November to apply for a job. The 29-year old woman had no idea that she would go into labor that day. She gave birth prematurely in the airport parking lot to a six-pound girl. Mother and child were taken to the Hospital Materno-Infantil San Lorenzo de Los Mina in Santo Domingo by an airport ambulance. Airport governor Arístides Fernández Zucco authorized that the airport cover the baby's first year expenses.

Airport schedules now on Internet
Codetel, the leading Dominican telecommunications company, and the governor of the Las Americas International Airport signed an agreement by which the telecommunications company will provide Las Americas International Airport's updated scheduled arrivals and departures information on the Internet. The URL for incoming flights is http://www.ciberplaza.com.do/aila/llegan.asp
For outgoing flights, the URL is

Juan Luis Guerra & 4.40 at Altos de Chavón
Juan Luis Guerra, one of the most outstanding Latin American performers of the 80s and 90s, has scheduled a presentation at Altos de Chavón in La Romana. He will perform at the Altos de Chavón artistic village amphitheater on 18 December 1999. The amphitheater seats only 5,000 persons. Guerra had plans for a presentation at the Juan Pablo Duarte Olympic Stadium, but the stadium is undergoing repairs and will not be available for artistic presentations until next year. Guerra took Iberoamerica by storm in the 90s, to later retire from world tours and dedicate himself to create the successful TV station, Mango TV and successful radio station Viva FM.

Population of the DR by 2000
The population of the DR will be 8,518,483 inhabitants by year 2000, says the National Office of Statistics (ONE). The ONE says that the population of the DR has grown by one million since the last National Census in 1993. ONE estimates that there will be 2.7 million people living in the National District (Santo Domingo) by year 2,000.

Kendo at the Mirador Park
Dominicans that have been practicing Kendo, Japanese fencing, for a while are now gathering at the Mirador del Sur Park every Sunday. Kendo is a Japanese martial art which trains the mind and body and cultivates one's character through one-on-one combat using a bamboo sword while wearing traditional clothing and protective equipment. Frank Santana, promoter of the sport, explains that they are now practicing at the Mirador because they want more people to get tto know the sport. The Kendo training sessions are fast moving, noisy and a highly aerobic activity.

Sammy Sosa's birthday party
Hoy newspaper reports that multimillionaire Donald Trump, singer and actress Jennifer Lopez, Reverend Jesse Jackson and baseball player Derek Jeter have already confirmed they will be in the DR for Sammy Sosa's birthday party. President Leonel Fernández and Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez are also expected to attend. The list of rich-and-famous invited to the party is long. Mark McGwire, one of the first to be invited, has not yet confirmed he will attend the Friday, 12 November bash. For background information on Sammy Sosa, see: http://www.majorleaguebaseball.com/u/baseball/mlb/players/player_8242.htm

Alex Rodríguez comes home
Alex Rodríguez, the Seattle Mariners baseball star, is coming home today. He will arrive via Miami at 2 pm. During his stay in the DR he will give clinics for children and will participate in non-profit fund raising activities. He is scheduled to meet with President Leonel Fernández and Vice President Jaime David Fernández. He will also participate in the community integration programs of the National Police, and will visit the barrios with Police chief General Pedro de Jesús Candelier Tejada. He also has plans to leave in operation a foundation to channel help to sportsing groups. At present he supports a Little Leagues program in Miami, where he grew up. 24 year old shortstop is expected to be Major League's next best paid ball player. There has been talk of his signing a US$200 million contract to remain with the Seattle Mariners. To read more about who is Alex Rodríguez, see: http://www.majorleaguebaseball.com/u/baseball/mlb/players/player_8023.htm

Dominican baseball update
Dominican Winter Baseball Game standing, including Sunday, 7 November games:
Leones del Escogido 7-2 (.778)
Pollos del Cibao 5-3 (.600) -2 games
Aguilas Cibaeñas 9-5 (.556) -2 games
Estrellas Orientales 7-3 (.429) ­3 games
Tigres del Licey 10-2 (.200) ­5.5 games

This week's games:
Monday, 8 November 1999
Santo Domingo: Pollos vs. Licey
Santiago: Estrellas vs. Aguilas

Tuesday, 9 November 1999
Santo Domingo: Escogido vs. Licey
San Francisco de Macorís: Estrellas vs. Pollos

Wednesday, 10 November 1999
Santo Domingo: Pollos vs. Escogido
San Pedro de Macorís: Aguilas vs. Estrellas

Thursday, 11 November 1999
Santo Domingo: Aguilas vs. Escogido
San Francisco de Macorís: Licey vs. Pollos

Friday, 12 November 1999
Santiago: Pollos vs. Aguilas
San Pedro de Macorís: Licey vs. Estrellas

Saturday, 13 November 1999
Santo Domingo: Pollos vs. Licey
San Pedro de Macorís: Escogido vs. Estrellas

Sunday, 14 November 1999
Santo Domingo: Licey vs. Escogido
San Pedro de Macorís: Aguilas vs. Estrellas

To follow Dominican baseball action, see if Fox Sports World Español baseball games transmissions are available in your area.
Fox will transmit the following games of the Dominican League:

- Licey v Escogido 11/14/99 7pm EDT Delay Dominican League
- Licey v Escogido 11/21/99 7pm EDT Delay Dominican League
- Licey v Aguilas 11/26/99 7pm EDT LIVE Dominican League

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