first_imgDear Editor,It was with considerable disgust that I read a missive appearing in the letters columns of the newspapers recently, which seems to be nothing more than a vulgar attempt to disparage two sitting City Councillors, which has the name of the Council’s Public Relations Officer subscribed to it as its author.I believe that this is the only country where a public servant would seek to, and get away with, ridiculing two members of its Board using the public media. And make no mistake about it, the elected Councillors are the employers of this officer and constitute the Board or city government of Georgetown.Have the rules, policies and standard operational procedures become so unravelled at City Hall, that an officer can casually run to the press to publicise what she perceives as transgressions by Councillors, rather than reporting them to the Mayor, the Communities Minister or the Local Government Commission?But more galling than the patent disrespect shown by this action, is the manifest duplicity and hypocrisy being practiced by this officer. Why only now “up from the ashes of the Georgetown Municipality has the Public Relations Officer arisen”? She was right there as Press Officer when the former Town Clerk was constantly harried, persecuted and assaulted by the preceding Mayor and Councillors of the City of Georgetown and did nothing. She was right there when attempts were made by the previous Council to lock the former Town Clerk out of her office, when pickets and vulgar demonstrations against her including a fake funeral service with an effigy were organised by them, when a microphone was snatched from the former Town Clerk’s hand in the midst of a statutory meeting by a Councillor, and she was chased out of the Council’s Chamber and out of her office and compound with chants of “we had enough,” “time to go” and “get out the place.” The present Public Relations Officer failed to lift a pen or even a finger in the defence of a lady like herself, but now she is so fired up. Why? I end with the famous line in Martin Carter’s poem “…all are involved, all are consumed”.Sincerely,Anu Biharilast_img read more


first_imgAn international cocoa consultant, Dr. Andrew Lambert has observed that cocoa produced by Liberian smallholder farmers is not independently graded at the local level and as a result they do not receive payment according to the true value of their products.According to Dr. Lambert, cocoa produce coming into Liberia from the Ivory Coast is either incorporated into village-level cocoa or transshipped, either formally or informally, through Liberia for export.He said that Liberia normally exports cocoa that has high levels of moldy, slatey or violet beans, all signs of inadequate fermentation and drying.“Prices for cocoa beans at the local level – relative to the Freight On Board (FOB) price – have risen significantly over recent years,” Dr. Lambert said, adding that indiscriminate buying practices from informal operators reduces or eliminates incentives to farmers to follow the correct fermentation and drying techniques and thereby achieve the standard quality grades of internationally traded cocoa.“There are lots of works to be done…” suggested Dr. Lambert, adding that Liberian farmers are at a disadvantage. In his presentation on the Cocoa market system assessment at GROW Liberia headquarters in Sinkor last Tuesday, the visiting consultant recommended that concrete steps should be taken to accomplish the required market systems changes in the Cocoa Sector, which is one of GROW Liberia’s Portfolio areas.The Grow Liberia Program is designed to facilitate positive market systems change using the “Making Markets Work for the Poor” (M4P) approach to ensure that agricultural growth in Liberia benefits smallholder farmers and the rural poor men, women and youth while promoting permanence in the country’s economy. This will be accomplished by working through and facilitating the work of value chain actors and partners with distinct involvement in specific sectors.To accomplish the required market systems’ changes in the Cocoa Sector, one of GROW’s Portfolio areas, international cocoa consultant Dr. Andrew Lambert was hired by GROW to do a Market Systems Assessment of the sector to assess the cocoa value chain, identify constraints and opportunities, and advise GROW on the choice of interventions to be designed to mitigate the effects of the identified constraints.Dr. Lambert has been investigating the cocoa market systems through desk reviews, field trips to Nimba, Bong and Lofa, visits to exporters, buyers, input suppliers and engagement with agents, government and other participants or players in the cocoa sector. His presentation focused on his findings during the month-long assessment of the cocoa market system which was followed by recommendations to GROW-Liberia for appropriate interventionsthat will spur growth and development and increased economic benefit for smallholder cocoa farmers and buyers in Liberia.Meanwhile, Dr. Lambert said that in order to guarantee a fair and equitable price for the smallholder cocoa producers, a mechanism should be established by the Government of Liberia prior to the start of the 2015/2016 cocoa season to require that all cocoa produced in the country must be graded and certified at the local level. According to him, this mechanism should be followed by a regulation implemented within the following twelve months. “The intent of this action is to independently certify the specific grade(s) of cocoa produced in the country in accordance with a transparent grading system that is compliant with international standards.”Dr. Lambert also recommended certification which will entail the issuance of a certificate that will state the local origin of the cocoa, and the farm or farmer organization responsible for the production in order to provide full traceability.In order to implement this practical, strategic mechanism, Dr. Lambert stated that a contract should be established between the Government of Liberia, through its commodity regulatory agency, and an independent professional quality assurance firm that will provide the grading and certification services at the local level of all cocoa produced in the country.“This will help ensure that throughout the value chain all certified graded cocoa will be sold transparently at a fair and equitable market price,” Dr. Lambert said.The visiting Consultant also called for the establishment of new rules of the game through a combination of regulatory measures and private sector coordination agreements in order to promote respect for contractual agreements between growers, buyers, traders and exporters; promote the production of grade one cocoa through clearer price incentives and ease of access to pre-harvest best practice and inputs; promote the correct processing and grading of cocoa and eliminate the trade in wet cocoa.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more


first_imgLiberian Women have put forward the names of prominent women as candidates for the vice presidency in the upcoming 2017 presidential and legislative elections.Delivering a statement from the women on International Women’s Day (IWD) national celebration recently held in Buchanan, Grand Bassa County, the county’s former superintendent, Madam Etweda Sugars Cooper, named Bong County Senator Jewel Howard Taylor, women’s rights advocate Ruth Caesar and Constitution Review Commission (CRC) Chairperson, Gloria M. Scott as their three candidates who should be the running mates for any presidential contestant. According to Madam Cooper, anyone vying for the presidency must take one of these women as their running mate in order to have the backing of Liberian women. In the last national population and housing census, which was conducted by the Liberia Institute of Statistics and Geo-Information and Services (LISGIS) in 2008, there were over 40,000 more men enumerated than their female counterparts. The population difference stood at 1,764,555 males and 1,724,517 females. Since that census, it is not clear how wide the gap now stands between the sexes and how many more women have now reached the voting age of 18. Touching on the IWD, Madam Cooper stated that as the world celebrated the day, Liberian women were proud of their achievements in the face of many barriers that they have overcome.Among their achievements, she stated that the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, has been successful in coordinating with all other agencies of government to mainstream gender issues in the work place.“Fellow Liberians, the Liberian women are not victims but conquerors. We will continue to fight for our rights. We will no longer sit in the back seat but will work side by side with our male counterparts,” she stated. She maintained that Liberian women are now the architects of their own destinies and they will build for themselves a world they want to live in in Liberia. Brief Profiles of the women considered eligible for the Vice PresidencyJewel Cianeh Howard Taylor, born January 17, 1963, is a politician and current Senator from Bong County. She was married to President Charles Taylor and was First Lady of Liberia during his presidency. In 2005, she was elected to the Liberian Senate, representing Bong County. She is a member of the National Patriotic Party.When her former husband was President, Sen. Taylor held a number of official posts in the Liberian government, including Deputy Governor of the National Bank of Liberia, president of the Agriculture Cooperative and Development Bank (ACDB) and Mortgage Financing Underwriter of the First Union National Bank. Taylor holds a graduate degree in Banking and two bachelors’ in banking and economics. On December 21, 2011, she graduated from the Louise Arthur Grimes School of Law of the state-owned University of Liberia. Gloria Musu Scott is presently the Chairperson of the Constitution Review Commission (CRC) of Liberia. Before she was appointed to this post by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, she served in the National Legislature as Senator for Maryland County. Madam Scott served as the Chief Justice of the Republic of Liberia from 1997 to 2003 during the presidency of Mr. Charles Taylor. She headed the Judicial Branch of the Liberian Government and was the Chief Judge of the Supreme Court of Liberia.Ruth Gibson Caesar is a development economist, who has worked for the government of Liberia in the areas of budgeting, financial and economic planning, and the NGOs and international agencies in areas comprising gender equity and women’s empowerment, conflict resolution and peace-building. She was the Deputy Executive Director for Operations at the National Commission on Disarmament, Demobilization, Rehabilitation and Reintegration (NCDDRR). A former member of the National Legislature and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Mrs. Caesar is a founding member and national focal point of the Liberia chapter of the Mano River Women’s Peace Network (MARWOPNET), a network aimed at maintaining peace in Guinea, Sierra Leone, Cote d’Ivoire and Liberia through lobbying, networking, holding dialogue with warring parties, heads of state and authorities, ECOWAS, UN, AU, EU and other leaders, and participating in meditation and negotiations among warring parties during the Accra peace talks which ended the brutal Liberian civil conflict. She is a staunch women’s rights advocate.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more


first_imgIn observance of World Diabetes Day, the Lions Club of Diamond-Grove, East Bank Demerara, held an interactive session and screening for diabetes at the Ramada Princess hotel on Tuesday.Chairperson of the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation, Kesaundra Alves, delivered the feature address on behalf of Public Health Minister Volda Lawrence.Alves outlined that in the region of the Americas, “there are some 54 countries where the situation is quite alarming”. She said Guyana and Trinidad occupy theA staffer from the Ramada Princess hotel having an examination of her eyes during the eventtop two positions with regard to the incidents of diabetes and deaths of persons during their working life and those becoming sick or chronically ill or disabled due to diabetes.According to the Department of Public Information, Alves noted that in the World Health Organisation country profile for 2016 it was revealed that most deaths occurred in the 30 to 69 age range, with 160 men and 180 women succumbed toThe team from the Diamond-Grove Lions Club, along with GPHC Chairperson, Kesaundra Alvesdiabetes in Guyana for that year.Alves noted too that the sustainability of the country’s economy will be severely compromised if on a yearly basis, human resources are lost at this rate. The health official urged persons to be more cognisant of their health and reiterated that the disease can be prevented or better managed by a change of lifestyle that helps to reduce the risk factors.“Diabetes is a long-term condition that causes high blood sugar levels. So first, we have to take a look at our diet. It is ill-advised to indulge in eating habits that will jeopardise our health, so let’s craft a healthy eating plan; one that has less consumption of sugar, our sugary drinks and snacks and all the processed foods high in sugar that we consume. It is crucial that we control our blood glucose levels so let us take a keen look at the household nutrition and make the appropriate changes.”Speaking directly to the theme of the session “Women and Diabetes – our right toKesaundra Alves, Chairperson of the GPHC making remarks a healthy future”, Alves revealed that women are more affected than men and less able to withstand the burden of the disease. She also advocated for increased physical activity and exercise and also for the person to put wellness as a priority while highlighting the dangers of being overweight, smoking and alcohol consumption.Alves observed that data is instrumental since it will allow health officials to monitor patients more effectively and devise action plans and strategies based on the trends that emerge from the data. This, she said, will prove to be cost-effective in the long run and will generate empirical evidence that will be an effective tool.World Diabetes Day is observed every year on November 14.last_img read more


first_imgFormer Assistant Police Commissioner Paul Slowe has been nominated to head the Police Service Commission.This is according to Social Cohesion Minister, Dr George Norton on Thursday as he laid the 11th Report of the Committee on Appointments in relation to the appointment of members of the Commission.In addition, retired Assistant Commissioner Clinton Conway and retired Woman Assistant Commissioners Vesta Adams and Claire Jarvis have been recommended to be part of the PSC.The nominations were made by the Association of Former Members of the Guyana Police Force and the Guyana Police Association.According to the Minister, these recommendations will be acted upon only after they have been reviewed and considered by the Head of State, David Granger.Slowe had been the Chairman of the Commission of Inquiry into the alleged assassination plot against the President last year.It was alleged that an East Bank Demerara man, Andriff Gillard reported to the Police that his friend and neighbour Nizam Khan offered him $7 million to assassinate the President.The State newspaper, under the direct responsibility of Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, had reported that the report completed by Slowe recommended that substantive Police Commissioner Seelall Persaud be forced to resign or be removed if he refused.“The Commission recommends that Commissioner Seelall Persaud should be made to resign his position as Commissioner of Police for the Guyana Police Force, under such terms and conditions that His Excellency considers appropriate. Failing which, proceedings should be initiated in accordance with Article 225 of the Constitution of the Cooperative Republic of Guyana to have him removed from office for misbehaviour,” the State media had reported.Moreover, according to the excerpts of the leaked CoI report, Slowe had found that Commissioner Persaud acted improperly when he instructed Inspector Prem Narine to send Nizam Khan on bail on the night of March 29, 2017.It was also recommended that Persaud be investigated for perjury in relation to his statement when he said that he was not aware of the allegations until after 16:00h on March 29, 2017, as Assistant Commissioner Clifton Hicken had told the CoI that he reported the incident to Persaud around 10:00h.Assistant Police Commissioner David Ramnarine was acting as Police Commissioner when the allegation was levelled, and he told the CoI that he felt a proper investigation was not conducted.As such, the report recommended that sanctions be imposed against him for his failure to ensure that a proper investigation was conducted.In relation to Crime Chief, Senior Superintendent Wendell Blanhum, Slowe recommended that he be replaced for poor leadership and questioned his role in the successful solving of crimes under his watch.Additionally, Slowe further recommended that Blanhum’s Deputy, Senior Superintendent Rishi Dass, be disciplined for neglect of duty for failing to ensure the correct date of the allegation made by Gillard.Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo, at that time had indicated his belief that Slowe had “had an axe to grind” and was acting on the basis of a vendetta.According to Jagdeo, if President Granger was serious about an investigation into the alleged plot against him, “he should not have appointed Paul Slowe to head it, because Paul Slowe has bad blood with many people.”He then drew attention to the fact the PSC nominee had in fact served on the coalition’s campaign team in the last General Election held in May 2015.“He was put there to do a hatchet job on the leadership of the Police Force, destroying professionalism,” Jagdeo had said.last_img read more


first_imgLet’s take a look at what’s going on this weekend in the local sports scene, starting with the Blizzard Bike Club, which holds its 24th annual club championship on Sunday morning at 10 am. Local soccer players will be playing in the Fort St. John soccer club’s tourney all weekend long – for game times and fields check out the tournament tab at fsjsoccer.com. And, of course, there’s the Hudson’s Hope Rodeo, with live action starting at 1 o’clock on both days, there’s also a pancake breakfast both days, and tomorrow there’s a parade and a Much Music Dance party. Tons going on as the Hudson’s Hope rodeo celebrates 50 years.- Advertisement –last_img


first_imgSACRAMENTO – Adults who smoke in a vehicle carrying children could be fined $100 under a bill that cleared its first committee Wednesday. “Second-hand smoke hurts everyone, but children are particularly vulnerable,” said the bill’s author, Sen. Jenny Oropeza, D-Long Beach, a cancer survivor. She cited a 2006 report by the Harvard School of Public Health that said particulate matter in a smoker’s car can be as much as 10 times higher than in a smoker’s home. That can sharply increase the risk of heart disease, lung cancer and other ailments, Oropeza told the Senate Health Committee. Her bill would make it illegal to smoke a cigar, pipe or cigarette in vehicles carrying a minor, regardless of whether the car is parked or moving. It also creates a public health education program. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more


first_imgFormer Tottenham star David Ginola has dismissed any qualms about Dele Alli’s temperament and insists the midfielder must play for England at Euro 2016.Alli has been one of the standout performers of the season so far with his incredible strike against Crystal Palace a leading contender for goal of the season.However, at only 19-years-old there has been debate as to whether he should be starting for England this summer so quickly after his meteoric rise from League One MK Dons.But Ginola believes he absolutely must. “He needs to play [at the Euros]. He is a fantastic player,” Ginola told the Alan Brazil Sports Breakfast.“You think about waiting for him to get more experience, I don’t think so, he will get that with his club.“He is going to have a great European Championships and a great end of the season for Spurs.“He is the future of English football and with his feet he is doing things that others can only dream of.”Alli was lucky not to see red for an apparent kick out during Thursday night’s Europa League draw with Fiorentina.The incident led to Mauricio Pochettino saying the Englishman still has a lot to learn, and while Ginola agrees, the former France international insists many of the game’s greats all had an aggressive streak.“You have to look at the overall picture of the player,” Ginola added. “He has some downsides and this is probably one of his only weaknesses in the game: having some bad gestures on the football pitch.“But you mention players like David Beckham and Zinedine Zidane, a lot of the great players have had a temper on the pitch.“Alli will get rid of that in a few months’ time. It will be history in a few years.“He is very, very talented and you cannot be perfect at the age of 20, you still have plenty to learn and he is still in the learning process.”last_img read more


first_imgMichael Quigley at an earlier court appearance.A DONEGAL Irish dancing teacher fraudulently transferred his family home and another property into his wife’s name so he wouldn’t have to pay €400,000 to an abuse victim, the Court of Appeal has ruled.The three-judge appeal court dismissed Michael Quigley’s appeal against a High Court finding that the transfer of the assets to his wife Alice should be set aside as fraudulent under the Conveyancing Act (Ireland) 1634. It also awarded costs against him. Quigley have until February to decide whether to take the case to the Supreme Court.In 2011, the High Court awarded €400,000 to Dana Doherty (44), a national school teacher, against 70-year-old Quigley of Barnhill Park, Letterkenny after finding he abused her when she was one of his dancing pupils aged between 12 and 19.Juries in two criminal trials had failed to reach verdicts so Ms Doherty then took a High Court civil action and was awarded €400,000. Mr Quigley lost a Supreme Court appeal against that award.In an effort to get payment, Ms Doherty brought separate proceedings against Mr Quigley and his wife alleging the 2000 transfer of his home in Letterkenny and the 1998 transfer of a property at Meenagown, Donegal, were intended to defeat Ms Doherty’s claim for the €400,000.In denying those claims, the Quigleys argued the family home was transferred to get a loan for a home extension, while the second property transfer was to get future planning permission on the land.Giving the appeal court’s judgment, Mr Justice Michael Peart noted the High Court found Mr Quigley was aware by 1991 Ms Doherty was alleging she was sexually abused by him. He was also aware she had in August 1993 made her first complaint to gardaí after which Mr Quigley was immediately interviewed.Although Ms Doherty intended her complaints should lead to Mr Quigley being charged and convicted of criminal offences, the alleged activities were also tortious acts capable of giving rise to a claim in damages, the judge said.These tortious acts, and the complaints made about them, and the interview of Mr Quigley, existed as facts at the dates of the two property transfers, he said. That meant the necessary inference could be drawn from those so as to meet the legal tests for establishing they were done to defeat the claim of a future creditor.The High Court’s conclusion Ms Doherty was undoubtedly a “creditor” within the meaning of the 1634 Act was amply supported by legal authority and correct on the facts as found by the High Court, he said.The High Court correctly found the property transfers were made for no consideration and correctly inferred Mr Quigley’s intention was that the property transferred in 1998 and 2000 should be placed beyond recourse to Ms Doherty as a future creditor, should she win her damages claim in the future.It was “noteworthy” Mr Quigley gave no evidence concerning the transfers and the High Court rejected his wife’s evidence in that regard, the judge added.IRISH DANCE TEACHER IN ABUSE CASE TRANSFERRED PROPERTY ‘FRAUDULENTLY’ was last modified: December 22nd, 2015 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more


first_img “Back in the early ’70s, we had 50-, 60-, 70-car fields,” Kanke said. “We had those caliber of drivers. There will be 25 to 30 of the best drivers in the country. These kind of races are what I like the best.” As one of only three Southwest Series drivers with multiple wins at Irwindale Speedway – David Gilliland and Burney Lamar are the other two – Kanke said his experience will be a benefit. But he also recognizes that experienced drivers in the other series will have an edge as well. He likes the chances of drivers like Steve Carlson, Garrett Evans and Jeff Fultz, all veteran racers in their respective divisions. Carlson won two races and is second in points in the Midwest Series. Evans had four top-five finishes and is third in the Northwest Series. Fultz won the Southeast Division with four wins in 12 races. “If they get right, they’re going to be hard to beat,” Kanke said. Because of the level of competition, Kanke said he is approaching the All-Star Showdown a little differently than a regular-season race. “If a guy comes out of there first, he’s really good,” Kanke said. “Anybody comes out of there sixth is really good. That’s the caliber of racing I grew up on in the early ’80s.” But unlike the drivers in the Northwest, Midwest and Southeast, the Southwest Series drivers will have to travel from Phoenix to Irwindale in one day to make the All-Star Showdown. The Southwest Series season finale was Thursday at Phoenix International Raceway. Drivers had to be at Irwindale Speedway on Friday for qualifying races. Kanke is one of the lucky drivers on the Southwest Series. He has two cars he can use in races. Kanke took his back-up car to Phoenix and left his primary car at home. That’s how important the All-Star Showdown is to Kanke. He wants his best car to race against the best drivers in the country. And perhaps add a Showdown win to his racing resume. Kanke finished 30th in the regular-season finale race at Phoenix. Bob Lyon of Agua Dulce was 24th; Pursley was 37th; and Michels was seventh. NASCAR Nextel Cup Series regular Ken Schrader won the Phoenix race. He will be racing in Sunday’s Cup race at Phoenix. Tim Haddock covers motor sports for the Daily News. He can be reached at (818) 713-3715 or timothy.haddock@dailynews.com AT THE RACES NASCAR ELITE DIVISION, GRAND NATIONAL DIVISION Toyota All-Star Showdown Site: Irwindale Schedule: Tonight, races (Speed Channel, 5 p.m.) Track: Irwindale Speedway (half-mile oval). Race distances: Elite Division (62.5 miles/125 laps); Grand National Division (75 miles/150 laps). Posted awards: Elite Division, $268,220/Grand National Division, $303,000. Last year: Mike Johnson won the Grand National Division race and Eric Holmes won the Elite Division race. Fast facts: The Toyota All-Star Showdown features the top drivers from the two NASCAR regional racing series, the Grand National Division and Elite Division. … All drivers in the events are guaranteed starting spots, but all had to race in a 50-lap qualifying race on Friday to determine the starting order. The lineups for the qualifying races are set up by regular season points, with champions and points leaders for each respective series starting from the back. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! M.K. Kanke has been a regular on the NASCAR Elite Division, Southwest Series, since 1987. He has won more than $400,000 in his career, making him the Southwest Series money leader, and 20 races, good for second all-time. But tonight will mark his first time in the NASCAR Toyota All-Star Showdown. The top-10 drivers in the four NASCAR Elite Divisions are eligible for tonight’s All-Star Showdown at Irwindale Speedway, the third year the half-mile track has hosted the event. Greg Pursley of Canyon Country and Rip Michels of Mission Hills are in the Southwest Series top 10 and eligible for the All-Star Showdown. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The NASCAR Grand National Division is also part of the All-Star Showdown. The top 15 drivers from the West Series and Busch North Series are eligible for the Grand National Division portion of the race. Kanke, a driver from Frazier Park, was running partial schedules on the Southwest Series in 2003 and 2004 and didn’t finish in the top 10 in points either year. This year, Kanke finished seventh in points, solidly in the top 10, and with one win already at Irwindale Speedway in August, he likes his chances against some of the top short-track racers in the country. “We’re using the same set-up we won the race with,” said Kanke. “We got two good races at Irwindale. We got good data. I think we will have a good car.” The All-Star Showdown reminds Kanke of the open competition days of NASCAR, when some of the top drivers at the Cup level would race against the regional stars at short tracks across the country. last_img read more