IN THE NEWS
4‘First Man’ Rico Recovering
The president’s husband, José María Rico, was being cared for at home this week after he was airlifted by helicopter to CIMAHospital July 11 with a fractured hip. As many as seven medical professionals are visiting Rico throughout the day, according to news reports. Rico, 75, was vacationing in Punta Islita on the NicoyaPeninsula, in Northwestern Costa Rica, when he fell and fractured his hip.
4Apple’s iPhone Approved
With the cell phone market opening to private participation, the Superintendency of Telecommunications has approved five new phone models to provide service in the Costa Rican network, including the Apple iPhone. Currently, only phones authorized by the Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE) can be used to provide cell service. New competitors are expected to enter the cell market by the beginning of 2011.
4Chinchilla On the Mine
President Laura Chinchilla appears willing to listen to opposition groups pushing her to close the Crucitas gold mine in northern Costa Rica for good, but her administration has not made a final call. Polls indicate more than 80 percent of Ticos oppose the project. Mine opponents marched earlier in July from San José all the way to the mine area near the Nicaraguan border. Last week they handed Chinchilla a written request to revoke the presidential decree signed by her predecessor, Oscar Arias, that authorized the Crucitas project to move ahead. Chinchilla said in a press conference she would “analyze” the decree.
4Rains Force Prison Move
Costa Rican authorities are looking to transfer 180 prisoners from San José’s Buen Pastor Prison after heavy rain and mudslides made a section of the women’s prison uninhabitable. However, Justice Minister Hernando Paris acknowledged there’s no available space to which they could be moved, as nearly every prison is full. More than 9,300 people are serving sentences in the country, in a system with a capacity for just 8,470 (TT, June 18).
4Recycling Expanded in Caribbean
The Talamanca-Caribbean Biological Corridor Association and the Recycling Association of the Caribbean have formed a new alliance to expand recycling services in the Talamanca, in Costa Rica’s southern Caribbean region. Each week, the Recycling Alliance will collect glass, aluminum, all types of plastics, cardboard, paper, car batteries and used cooking oil from homes and businesses in the Talamanca area. For more information call 2756-8033 or 8319-2573.