first_imgNatoya Goule hopes to make the final of the 800 metres at the IAAF World Athletics Championships that begins at the Bird’s Nest in Beijing, China, this weekend. From there, she hopes to produce her best performance for Jamaica.Goule, 24, will be one of two athletes, the other being Simoya Campbell, representing Jamaica in the event that Jamaica traditionally does not do well in. However, both women have broken two minutes this season.Goule won the National Championships in June in a personal best 1:59.63, while Campbell clocked 1:59.29 at the World University Games in South Korea in July, making her the fastest Jamaican this year.Goule’s last race was a disappointing 2:02.16 effort for third at an American track league meet in Atlanta in early August. Her coach, Mark Elliott, who directed her to National Collegiate Athletic Association titles both at Louisiana State University and at Clemson, believes that despite the poor showing last time out the diminutive runner should be faster in China.”That last race does not indicate much. She ran a bad, excited race,” he said. “We thought she would have gone out faster, but she did not. She has not run enough races where she did not have to worry about the pace and that did not lend itself for a better result. As for Worlds, she is ready training-wise. Her workout indicates that she is ready for good performances as long as she runs her race.”The hope is to make the final,” Elliott continued. “Then we will see what happens in the final.”Having Campbell alongside her representing Jamaica makes Goule a happy camper as it means that her event will start to attract more interest among Jamaicans, Elliott revealed.”Simoya is running well also and knowing Natoya she is happy another Jamaican is running well. But her motivation is to race well against the 1:57 and 1:58 athletes. She speaks of having more Jamaicans in her events. That makes it more likely to drum up more interest in the middle distance and long distance events.”last_img read more

first_imgAlready without injured All-Stars Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant and Klay Thompson, Golden State lost Draymond Green in the second quarter to a bruise in the pelvic area. Green took a knee to the upper groin while defending a drive to the basket by Danny Green.Draymond Green said he was suffering a “constant, annoying pain,” but doesn’t expect to miss any games.“It’ll be fine,” Green said. “I think it’s just something that’s kind of like at the peak right now, but it’s calmed down a little bit since it happened. It ain’t that serious.”The Warriors weren’t getting any sympathy from a Spurs team that has played without Kawhi Leonard for much of the season.Golden State still managed to hold San Antonio to 12 points in the third quarter, matching the Spurs’ season low for points in any period.ADVERTISEMENT Scarlett Johansson, Sterling K. Brown among SAG Awards presenters Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Two blocked shots propelled the Warriors to their first lead of the game.JaVale McGee blocked Dejounte Murray’s attempted floater and then scored on a dunk to pull Golden State within 59-57 with 2:21 remaining in the third. Quinn Cook tied the game on a jumper after Patrick McCaw came from the weak side defensively to stuff Pau Gasol near the rim. Kevon Looney gave the Warriors the lead at 63-61 on jumper with two seconds left in the frame.The Spurs responded by holding the Warriors to 12 points in the fourth quarter to help their bid for a 21st consecutive postseason appearance.“They were great defensively,” Golden State coach Steve Kerr said. “The Spurs turned it up a notch. They’re fighting for their playoff lives and they played liked it.”Cook led Golden State with 20 points, Looney added 12 and Andre Iguodala and Nick Young had 10 each.Mills finished with 12 points and Danny Green added 11.TIP-INSWarriors: Curry (right ankle), Durant (fractured rib) and Thompson (fractured right thumb) did not travel with the team, remaining in Oakland to continue rehabilitating their injuries. … Curry was scheduled to be reevaluated Tuesday. … The Warriors’ highest point total in a quarter was 22 in the third. Golden State scored 42 points in the third quarter against Phoenix on Saturday, the 11th time it has scored 40-plus in a quarter this season. … Golden State has won six games when trailing by 15-plus points.Spurs: Leonard was not on the bench, as he has been for much of the team’s current six-game homestand. Leonard (right quadriceps tendinopathy) has played in only nine games this season. … Danny Green became the third player in franchise history with a 3-pointer in 400 career games, joining Manu Ginobili (746) and Bruce Bowen (411).BOUNDING REBOUNDERMurray had eight rebounds to set the franchise record for rebounds in a single season by a point guard. The 6-foot-5 guard has 385 rebounds in 1,436 minutes, surpassing Johnny Moore’s total of 378 collected in 2,689 minutes. Conor McGregor seeks to emerge from controversy in UFC comeback Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Marinerong Pilipino routs Gamboa-St. Clare, gets share of D-League lead LATEST STORIES Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown Recto seeks to establish Taal rehab body to aid community, eruption victims San Antonio Spurs forward LaMarcus Aldridge (12) is fouled by Golden State Warriors’ Kevon Looney (5) as he tried to drive to the basket during the second half of an NBA game, Monday, March 19, 2018, in San Antonio. San Antonio won 89-75. (AP Photo/Ronald Cortes)SAN ANTONIO — LaMarcus Aldridge continued to lead the way for the Spurs, who are trying to find a way to remain in the playoffs.Aldridge had 33 points and 12 rebounds, and San Antonio blew a 16-point lead to the injury-ravaged Golden State Warriors before pulling away for an 89-75 victory on Monday night.ADVERTISEMENTcenter_img Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Cabuyao City rising above the ashes through volunteerism Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil MOST READ In Liverpool, Man United sees the pain and path to recovery “I’m a leader, so I have to do what we need,” Aldridge said. “Playing defense, blocking shots, scoring. It all comes with it.”San Antonio beat Golden State for the first time in four tries this season and won their fourth straight overall to move into fifth place in the Western Conference, a half-game ahead of idle Utah and New Orleans.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkAldridge scored five straight points early in the fourth quarter to help the Spurs recapture a 66-65 advantage. He finished with 19 points in the fourth, including 11 straight that erased a four-point deficit and gave San Antonio a 72-65 lead it would not relinquish.“He was a horse in that fourth quarter,” San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich said. “Obviously, it wasn’t a fair fight, but it just shows what kind of class they have and how well coached they are and how badly they want to be champions again. They played great and we picked the right five minutes to play really well at the end of the game.” “He’s pretty athletic,” Aldridge said. “He has a nose for the ball. He goes and gets them. That’s big time for him. He’s only going to get better from here.”UP NEXTWarriors: Host Atlanta on Friday night.Spurs: Host Washington on Wednesday night.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina View commentslast_img read more

first_imgIt was one of the unusual homicide cases in Monrovia in recent times. Criminal lawyer Jason Doe was defending Samson Sombai, accused of the murder of a female lawmaker. It became apparent that the District Attorney was determined to pull all the strings to bind the defendant over for a jury trial.Though Jason Doe enjoyed such a trial, where he would stand before twelve common citizens, assembled to give his client his day in court, the prosecution in this case did not have enough proof beyond all reasonable doubt.The circumstances surrounding the death of former lawmaker Estella Yongor raised questions about her associates. There were reports that she might have been killed after she had received a gold wrist watch, missing after her body was discovered, which provided the added twist to the tongues Monrovians who followed the case with passion.Metropolitan newspapers in the city made wide guesses of her death. In a sensational angle, one of the most respected newspapers carried an editorial with a touch of irony in the lighter side of life:It would be the discovery of her missing gold watch that could help prosecutors a chance to give her death some justice.The demise of the woman known among her colleagues as the ‘lawlady’ has once again brought it painful home that there is always a day of reckoning in what we do.Estella Yongor’s end did not come because she had served her people well; it came because of certain decisions, ambitious as they might have been, were not appreciated by the very same people she had been hobnobbing for many years.Sadly, the woman known in frequenting where even Angels would not dare, has provided Monrovians much to talk about.An argument at a local club leading to her death is more intriguing than the bitterness of her death.Estella Yongor, the controversial lawmaker’s life was full of mystery and contradiction. Consider the following, as reported during the week of her death:“I saw the lawmaker that night,” said Monrovia Scratch Card Seller, Sam Toe, “she had on a gold watch and was a beauty that much I can tell you.”“A real beauty?” our reporter heard the question from an inquisitor, a young man who said he admired the lawmaker.Toe smiled, and said, “Yes, but there was this guy with her, and he was not that dashing in his outlook but there was something like a character in his looks.“Then after say twenty minutes, another man, he was a chubby type of guy and about twenty seven years old. His face was filled with rage.“It was hard to know what was responsible but he demanded for a gold wrist watch which started an argument that ended up in a melee.”Our investigations revealed that the lawmaker had had some inner friends and one of them could have sparked the fuse that led to her untimely death at thirty five.But the question is: where is the gold wrist watch? The discovery could lead to the eventual resolution of this horrible crime.The unrestrained but incriminating reports on the case in the media demonstrated people’s anger, and therefore many applauded when Judge Samson Saywah issued a gag order preventing further reporting till the preliminary trial was over.When her body was found, parts were missing, prosecuting witness, homicide investigative officer Detective Robert Monger testified during the pre-trial.“What else?” Prosecutor Santos Weah said, directing attention at detective Monger.“William Sombai, the defendant was caught with a briefcase that belonged to the decedent.”“When and where did you find William Sombai?”“It was two days after the murder and a witness at the club mentioned that he came along with the decedent.“We found him at his house in Duala drunk. Evidently he was under the influence of narcotics and a test indicated it was marijuana.”“What did you do next?”“We took him into custody and invited assistance from the JFK Medical Center. After some help, it took him two more days before he was sober.”“Ok,” the prosecutor said, “What did you do next?”“Well, when he sobered enough, he was able to explain his involvement and particularly how he got the briefcase belonging to the decedent.”“How did he get the briefcase?”“He said he found it behind the club, the Mayors Club, where the decedent and her friends had been that night of her murder.”“Did he reveal what happened to the lawmaker?”“Well,” the officer said, “initially he was not sure what was at stake till we informed him about the death of the lawmaker.”“What was his reaction?” “He broke down and wept but explained that he was not involved.”“He was not involved in what?”“In the lawmaker’s murder.”“And what else happened to him?”“He admitted that he was not himself that night and therefore he could not explain any circumstances that might have led to his involvement in the murder.”The prosecutor hesitated, and then said, “Did the defendant admit any knowledge of any of the persons that were with the lawmaker?”“Well, he admitted being there himself, I mean William Sombai…”But he was interrupted by the prosecutor, “When you said William Sombai, are you referring to William Sombai who is the defendant and is in this Courtroom?”“Yes,” the officer said, “and as I was saying defendant Sombai explained during our investigations that he had long known the decedent would end up that way.”“’What way did he mean?”“I think…”“Don’t think,” the prosecutor responded, “just answer the question as best as you know it from the defendant.”“In that case,” he answered, “he meant the way the lawmaker died.”The Courtroom remained quiet, as spectators focused their attention on the detective.On the defense’s side, the defendant sat somberly beside Criminal Lawyer Jason Doe, who watched the witness with a slight frown on his face.“Detective Monger,” the prosecutor pressed on, “you searched the defendant’s room?”“Yes.”“What did you find?”“A wrist watch, a gold wrist watch with the owner’s initial on it.”“Whose initials were they?”“The initials of the decedent.”“Do you have it with you?”“Yes.”The detective shuffled his pocket and withdrew a gold wrist watch with the initials of the late lawmaker on it.“What initials do you see on the wrist watch, Detective Monger?”“They are the letters E Y.”“Indicating Estella Yongor?”“Yes.”“What was the defendant’s response as to how he came to possess the gold wrist watch?”“Initially he was unable to explain how he came by the wrist watch till he realized the difficult position when his…”The prosecutor said, “Did his lawyer intervene?”“Yes and he further explained that the decedent had presented the watch to him as a gift.”“What happened next?”“When he was told that the owner of the wrist watch had been murdered, he said he would be blamed for her death.”“What did he do?” “For the next seven days, he kept weeping.”“What did he say, during this course?”“He would say ‘I know they would blame me, but I did not do it.”“And he admitted without being put under pressure that he was with the decedent but could not explain specifically his role during the period that the lawmaker reportedly died?”“Yes.”The prosecutor smiled and turning to Counselor Doe, said, “your witness.”Jason Doe strolled leisurely towards the witness and staring Detective Monger in the face, said: “You saw the gold wrist watch with the defendant?”“Yes.”“And initials there indicated EY, which you testified to represent Estella Yongor?”“Yes.”“But you will agree that the letters, EY can represent many other names other than Estella Yongor?”“Yes.”“It could be Eternal Youth, or Esther Young?”“Yes.”The lawyer saw a slightly confused look in the witness’ face, and said, “You examined the briefcase found by the defendant?”“Yes,” he said, “and we found out several personal effects of the decedent in it.”“Was there anything to suggest that someone had tampered with the briefcase?”“Yes.”“And the lawmaker, with all due respect to her memory, was known to have certain relations with certain characters in her community?”“Yes,” he said, “but evidently she was having a good time.”“During your investigations, Detective Monger, the defendant was cooperative?”The witness nodded and said quietly, “Of course.”A flickering light overshadowed the room, as the lawyer paced back and forth, hammering out questions with a professional touch. The spectators waited patiently, expecting the lawyer to spring one of his unusual questions to get the witness to create doubts with his answers. And the lawyer did not disappoint them when he charged:“The decedent was involved in many projects and there was one, Detective Monger, that indicated that she, on a number of occasions, argued with a man who had threatened her?”“Police found out that that threat was not anything serious,” the witness answered, his dark and piercing eyes staring into the lawyer’s gaze.“Who made the threat against the lawmaker?”Searching through his memories, the detective said, “It was one Samuel Boimah, who had in the past made some attempts to blackmail the lawmaker.”“Let me refer you to the briefcase which the police collected from the defendant,” Jason Doe said, “among the fingerprints was that of Samuel Boimah.”“Yes.”“Mr. Boimah was indebted to the lawmaker in the amount of US$5,000?”“That’s correct.”“And since Samuel Boimah was unable or did not want to repay the debt, did it not stand to reason that the pressure from the lawmaker compelled Boimah to engineer the lawmaker’s demise to free himself from the debt burden?”“Well,” the witness’s smooth composure was broken by a faint surprise as he fumbled his response, “we… considered that angle.”Nodding slowly, the lawyer said: “And what was your answer from that angle?”The lawyer’s question seemed to freeze the witness from inaction.The embarrassing situation was saved when, Judge Saywah said, “The Court finds this case very interesting and stipulates with the benefit of the defendant that there is the angle of Samuel Boimah that the police must investigate and therefore the Court hereby orders the defendant release from custody.”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_imgThe National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL) says oil blocks now out for international competitive bidding are not being sold neither auctioned contrary to media reports.“To suggest that the blocks are being sold, presupposes that Liberia looses ownership. That is not the case,” NOCAL said in a statement, adding “the Liberian State owns the oil under the seabed.”NOCAL is instead holding a bid round for old acreage which includes LB-6, LB-7, LB-16, and LB-17, which were made available under earlier bid rounds held years ago under the 2002 Petroleum Act.Production Sharing Contracts (PCSs) for LB-6 and LB-7 were awarded and negotiated but never fully executed. “In other words, no legally binding PSCs as in accordance with the Laws of Liberia for these two blocks were given,” the company noted in the statement.Regarding LB-16 and LB 17, NOCAL recalled, PCSs were held by International Oil Companies (IOCs), which decided to relinquish the blocks. The statement pointed out that it is standard petroleum industry practice for relinquished blocks to be made available for oil companies.NOCAL said further that it is not opening a bid round for new acreage for a bid round (LB-1 through LB-5, LB-18 through LB-30. These blocks, the company said will remain untouched until the new Petroleum Law is passed and a determination made regarding how to proceed in line with the new law. The National Legislature put a hold on all NEW BLOCKS from being offered for licensing until the new petroleum law is passed.  ‘New’ blocks refer to blocks that have never had a Production Sharing Contract attached to it, whether awarded or signed into law. “It is a good for the country that these blocks are being put out for lease,” NOCAL President and CEO, Dr. Randolph McClain said in a statement, adding, “doing so will generate more interest and help generate the revenue government so urgently needs for economic, human, social and other development programs.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_imgThe battle to kick the deadly Ebola Virus Disease from Liberia will demand the urgent attention by Liberian athletes to avoid contact sports, says Mr. V. Murvee Gray, assistant minister for sports.His appeal comes in the wake of reports that Liberian athletes are playing kickball and soccer in the various communities in Monrovia and its environs.Which, Minister Gray said in an interview with the Daily Observer yesterday in Monrovia, “It is not in support of the Liberian government’s effort to fight the deadly virus.”Minister Gray said athletes who are involved in contact sports must realize that they are putting their lives at risk, by refusing to adhere to preventive measures announced by the Ministry of Health & Social Welfare.“The athlete must know that he has a responsibility to ensure that the effort to kick Ebola out of Liberia rest on him,” he said.He emphasized on contact sports, including soccer, kickback, handball and basketball but said athletes can engage in individual training, to keep them in shape.“You can warm-up alone,” he said, “which does not mean you need to engage anyone or get involved in any other athlete.”Though he admitted it is difficult to prevent athletes from playing contact sports, but said it is important for athletes to know that these are normal times, and they must decide to avoid contact sports.“Athletes must understand the danger that we are facing today in the fight against the deadly Ebola disease,” he said.Minister Gray, a former athlete and administrator, asked community leaders to support the national effort against the deadly virus.“We are asking them to supervise their children who are engaged in contact sports,” he said.Minister Gray revealed that the annual County Meet cannot take place until Liberia succeeds in its fight against Ebola.“We’ve completed the rules, groupings and the fixture for the next County Meet,” he said, “but we cannot host the meet until there is no Ebola in Liberia.”He said as a result reports by some players that they are training for the County Meet is unrealistic.He urged parents and community leaders in the various counties, districts, and clans to continue to educate their families with information provided by the Ministry of Health to fight the virus to ensure total eradication of the virus from the country.“Then,” he said, “we’ll play all kinds of sports.”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_imgEsteemed Members of the Press Union of LiberiaVeteran members of the Press Union of LiberiaSurviving Organizers of the Press Union of LiberiaCompatriots in the march for a better LiberiaMy fellow citizensLadies and GentlemenToday had promised to be a very exciting date on the calendar of the Press Union of Liberia – 50 years on the struggle to ensure a free and responsible media landscape – 50 years of standing up to power, demanding and insisting upon the right to freely express ourselves, in so far as this expression was not tearing down bridges and creating division.Unfortunately, the difficult and cruel army of the ebola virus disease has restricted our desire to celebrate this day, given the wily disruption it has posed in our country and the sub-region.Further on the account of the ebola situation, all aspects of Liberian life have gradually ground to a halt. Schools are no longer open – children are lazying home; non-essential staff – whether from government service, NGOs, factories or other work places – have been ordered to stay away from work; Hospitals are operating at less than a quarter of their potentials, restoring such previously ignored diseases as mainline killers. In other instances, basic health services no longer run, and people are living until they die. Now in our country, the most significant activity that keeps working is the search for food – to survive.In the few instances where some work is going on, the preoccupation is on addressing the ebola situation. Today, every newspaper story has an ebola angle and every development grant is now directed at ebola.Now, given the gravity of the ebola situation and the risks involved with holding a normal celebration, the Press Union of Liberia has dedicated the observance of its 50th Anniversary to a nationwide Media Ebola Awareness Day.While we are joining the rest of the people of Liberia in talking about the gravity of the ebola situation, we also like to pay tribute to the men and women who, on this day in 1964, set forth the challenge to organize a body to protect the rights of journalists in this country, coordinate space for a free, independent and impartial media in Liberia, and at the same time chart their role in the development of the Liberian state, especially towards ensuring freedom of speech, the actualization of democracy and ensuring a guarantee of freedom, justice, equality and development in our country.The task set forth by those our compatriots have today bloomed into a most respectable organization – which cannot be ignored in anything good that has come out of Liberia.While our notes will continuously refer to E. Reginald Townsend, Henry B. Cole, Chauncey Cooper, Aston King and J. Persey Gumel, I nonetheless like to reference Tuan Wreh, who would go on to become a professor of law, but especially because he has provided for Liberian journalism students one academic text that provides a clearer idea of what journalism was in the days the Press Union of Liberia was organized. I also noted the longevity of James E Dennis, who has survived his contemporaries, and has given us the opportunity to think of the men who led the struggle.I also like to recognize Kenneth Y. Best, who has remained in the newsroom, even at the ripe age of 75.I wouldn’t forget T Nelson Williams, Sr., who led the organization of the Department of Mass Communications at the University of Liberia, providing for once an opportunity for Liberian journalists to gain academic qualifications here at home.But among all, our hero remains Stanton A. Peabody, who had the audacity to describe members of the House of Representatives in the best disposition of his thoughts, risking contempt and jail, raising the conviction of Liberian journalists to hold together and resist intolerance and alarm that speech must for once be free, especially within the realm of public service.Regrettably, despite a revolutionary coup in 1980, a new democracy-based constitution in 1985, despite ravaging wars that reorganized the entire state in 1990 and again in 2003, the very contempt of 1964 remains ridiculously unclarified in 2014.This simply says that the purpose of the Press Union of Liberia is just as relevant today (perhaps more) as it was 50 years ago.Across these years, the work of the Liberian media – now away from just newspapers and radio as in 1964 – has become even more challenged.The rights to freely speak, think and write – as guaranteed by the constitution have often been suppressed by various methods. At one point it was fancy to lock journalists up. As sensitivity grew and there is now the resort to court of laws to prevent that, other measures grew. Those have included shutting down, burning and in some instances torture and death.In more recent years, printing establishments were warned against printing certain papers, and as more papers have metamorphosed to owning printing presses, multiple, crime-based lawsuits are cropping up, with intent to shut down media houses.In still other cases, media houses have been shut down on claims of hate crimes, and at times just short of seditionIn all of these, our observation is that governments – in and out – have simply not come to grips with the reality that none can stop others from disagreeing in words, unless they have the capacity to stop others from thinking. Because the latter is impossible, efforts to prevent people from disagreeing is but a failed venture that only contributes to the evolution of conflict in our society.Ladies and Gentlemen:Given that we have dedicated our 50th Anniversary to the fight against ebola, we are keen not to get involved with rhetoric that will take over the recognition we are giving to the fight. Nonetheless, it is fair to note that the fight against ebola can only succeed when the various parties are confident that we are all in it together. That means, principles are standard and do not sway from case to case.We have a situation here, where all ebola deaths are buried en masse, and then burnt. Note is taken of the Ugandan Doctor from Redemption Hospital and the Catholic Priest. In the future – perhaps with better knowledge – some deaths are allowed special burial rites.At one point, all unexplained deaths will be treated as ebola deaths. A lot of loved ones were allowed to be carried away by a burial, then a burning team. At some point, the ratio changed, and the death certificates began. With deaths extending into the families of lost ones, an alarm has sounded.While crying aloud about denial and traditional practices, and telling all relatives and friends to accept the ebola reality, a new row has come forth when deaths in high quarters are cited to be ebola.There must be one standard that will instead get appreciation from all. Otherwise, those who have also doubted the circumstances of ebola in the first place will always have reason to maintain their doubts.On the other hand, the ebola situation has brought more challenge to the role of the media in reporting occurrences in our society. The state of emergency and yet unexplained restrictions introduces a tricky situation for a battle that must be fought inclusively. While media has pledged to work along in providing public education, the yet unknown keeps media in a position of fear, not sure of what happens next.In all of these, the Press Union has become a victim, observing 50 years of existence with a closure of a fearless newspaper outside of due process. As difficult as we find this, we still look forward in confidence to a High Court ruling on a number of constitutional issues that will effectively open up the space for freedom and justice for journalists and others in the wider Liberian society.So, as we arrange the 50th anniversary, our admonition is for journalists to strengthen their drive into making their journalism one that tells the entire Liberian story in a factual and inclusive manner. Our admonition is for journalists to take the greater responsibility of making their journalism enviable, stepping up to the challenge to ensure opportunities for all.On the other hand, after 50 years, and after a number of transformation in Liberia, it is time that the government – including the legislature, the judiciary and of course the executive – take additional efforts to tolerate dissent and disagreement. This is the purpose of journalism, and of democracy and human rights. Appreciation of free expression is more of the issues and expressions that one find especially offensive. The wider the diversity in our thought and speech, the better we can work together to find a common ground.We will continue working to improve the quality of journalism in Liberia; We will continue with our self-regulatory mechanism to show greater accountability by Liberian journalists to their audience, but we demand that going beyond fifty years – there must be increased opportunities to make journalism the pivot of our democracy, our governance system and stretching out accountability in Liberian society.Our disagreement with journalists should not be expressed through the power we wield, to the extent of violating rights and ignoring guarantees of freedom and accountability.Thank You!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_imgBudget 2018 debate…2018 should be called “the year of retrenchment”Amidst constant heckling from the Government side, Opposition parliamentarian, Dr Frank Anthony during his 2018 Budget Debate speech on Tuesday, described the 2018 Budget as one that is lackluster and has nothing tangible to offer Guyanese.Opposition parliamentarian,Dr Frank Anthony during his presentationThe former Culture, Youth and Sport Minister said Budget 2018 is an offensive one, telling the Parliament the budget is a representation of the tiredness of the Government.“This lackluster budget offends everyone. In just 2.5 years, four budgets latter, the (Finance) Minister seems tired and the Government seems tired. They badly need a rest and perhaps the people should put them to rest,” he said.SugarIn his emotionally charged presentation, Anthony said while the Government speaks about expanding the agriculture sector, their actions tell a different story.He alluded to the thousands of sugar workers who are now on the breadline following the decision to close a number of estates. Anthony said the workers feel betrayed by the Government after they were promised Government’s support to revive the ailing industry.Agriculture Minister Noel Holder during his presentation“The Government has adopted a narrow-minded, approach to sugar. That is to unilaterally shut major parts of the industry down. In the name of saving a few miserly dollars, thousands of workers will be sacrificed to save the industry, these innocent sugar workers and their families will become collateral damage in a spate of vindictive politics. Instead of helping by lending a hand to the industry, they prefer to the people and the industry while they are down,” Anthony added.He said he shudders when thinking about what 2018 holds, telling the Government they are following the old tradition of the People’s National Congress, and as such, should rename 2018 as “the year of retrenchment.” He questioned the Government’s plan for the thousands of workers who would be placed on the breadline following the closure of the estates.Meanwhile, during his presentation, Agriculture Minister Noel Holder said the framework governing the sugar industry needs to be re-tuned. He added that since the coalition Government took office, they have supported the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) with $32 billion and another $6.3 billion allocated for 2018.“However, capital investment of $12 billion will be required over the next three years 2018-2020 to ensure that the sugar production targets are met. Mr Speaker, despite the magnitude of subsidies, there has been no positive impact on the financial state of GuySuCo. The economy simply cannot afford this,” Holder said.At oddsGuySuCo has commenced the implementation of the plans for the sugar industry as set out in the White Paper. The plan calls for three estates –Albion, Blairmont and Uitvlugt – to continue canes and sugar operations. While Skeldon will be divested, Rose Hall and Enmore are to be divested or diversified and Wales is scheduled for diversification. In this regard, a Special Purpose Unit has been set up to handle the divestment/diversification of these estates.While the Government indicated that they would put the scheduled closure of the Rose Hall Estate on hold, GuySuCo have already issued over 400-dismissal letters to workers, giving them the required one-month notice.However, Minister of State Joseph Harmon told the media that Cabinet was surprised by GuySuCo’s move, adding that the Corporation should have dealt with the issue a bit differently.Harmon’s statement however did not find agreement with Minister Holder, who indicated that he is all supportive of the move to dismiss the workers adding that Cabinet was not surprised.Health sectorTurning his attention to the health sector, Dr Anthony related that they have been receiving a number of reports that indicate Government is spending a lot of money on procuring second hand equipment for the various hospitals. He noted that the equipment is standardized, hence providing unreadable results in some cases.He made special reference to the two Computer Tomography (CT) machines, received as donations and earmarked for Bartica and New Amsterdam Hospitals. He explained that the machines are yet to be unpacked, two years later and to be utilised, adding that the Georgetown Public Hospital Corporation (GPHC) budgeted for the procurement of a CT scanner.While alluding to the infamous emergency drug sole-sourcing at the GPHC, he noted that the Public Health Ministry is one of the leading ministries that consistently disregards the public procurement and tendering process.The parliamentarian said there are a number of projects which the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) Administration mismanaged and yet to be completed years after their stipulated completion date.He explained that in 2015, there were several projects at the Port Kaituma Hospital Complex as a part of the improvement plant and those projects were supposed to be completed within six months, but to date, they are still languishing.Those projects include the construction of a generator building and procurement of a generator, construction of an infections in-patient facility, a mortuary, a Nurses Hostel and a doctor’s quarter. All those projects totaled to over $217B and were scheduled to be completed before the end of 2016 but are yet to be completed. Additionally, the contractors are being paid for the incomplete work.He explained that there are a plethora of issues affecting the local health sector with Government turning a blind eye.Dr Anthony told the Parliament that at the West Demerara Regional Hospital (WDRH), X-rays stop working after 21:00h, anaesthetic machines are not working, leaking roofs have the drug bond in disarray and the operation theatres are none functional. While he was listing the issues plaguing the hospital, Anthony was supported by his Opposition colleagues all shouting, “Government don’t care!”Just recently, Government announced that the Diamond Diagnostic Centre would be converted into a regional hospital, while the WDRH would be fully operational on a 24-hour basis.last_img read more

first_imgFort St. John RCMP are gearing up to host its second annual Cycle and Shine.The event is taking place over the Aug. 20 and 21 weekend and is being held side by side with the Family Fun in the Sun at Centennial Park.- Advertisement -The event and fundraiser will include a kids bike rodeo, a motorcycle Show & Shine and a cycle and spin, on the Saturday, starting at 11:00 a.m., along with a yard sale and barbecue on Sunday, starting at 8 a.m. The sale and barbecue will raise money for the Canadian Cancer Society/Cops for Cancer Tour de North.At the rodeo, children will learn proper bike safety. Parents can register their children for the rodeo before noon on Saturday and the rodeo will begin at 1:30 p.m.This year, the Tour de North will be starting in Fort St. John and travelling through Dawson Creek, Chetwynd, Mackenzie, Prince George and Quesnel before finishing in Williams Lake.Anyone wanting to donate items for the yard sale or to register for the Show & Shine can contact either Constable Shawn Ingham at 250-261-8948 or Constable Josh Smith at 250-793-9586.Advertisementlast_img read more

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! A sudden hard rainstorm did little to dampen the spirits of more than 60,000 fans of Mexican-pop phenomenon RBD on Saturday at the L.A. Memorial Coliseum. The good-natured crowd, consisting mostly of preteen girls, their big sisters and moms, roared with delight as the six-member singing group performed hit after hit on a chilly night under cloudy skies. “Hola, Los Angeles,” were the first words from the performers as they took the neon-rimmed stage to an explosion of fireworks and smoke. Fans held aloft handmade signs and banners, singing along to the songs, which were largely pop ballads and gentle rockers. The incredible success of the group, which has developed under the radar of the English-language music press, is due to a Spanish-language teen-oriented soap opera called “Rebelde” (“Rebel”), which is set in a wealthy private school in Mexico City. The telenovela, which airs locally after school at 3 p.m. on KMEX-TV, deals with teen issues and stars the six members of RBD, who, in the show, perform in a band. “Anahi is my favorite because she’s popular,” said Cindy Lopez, 10, of Bloomington, naming one of the group members as she waited for the concert to begin. Her mom, Laura, added that, “Mommy likes them because they don’t use dirty lyrics.” In the hour leading up to the show’s 7:30 p.m. kickoff, vendors did a brisk business up and down Figueroa Street, selling T-shirts, hats, posters, DVDs, CDs, bracelets, pennants and necklaces emblazoned with the RBD logo. Inside the gates of the stadium, families waited in lines for pizza, nachos and soft drinks. The well-behaved, orderly crowd remained in high spirits despite intermittent rain. Whenever a KMEX helicopter hovered overhead, thousands roared and began doing the wave throughout the venue. The young fans, some of whom wore temporary RBD tattoos on their cheeks, screamed whenever one of their favorites took lead on a song. Of the six, Poncho was the choice of Martha, a 17-year-old from Wilmington. “He’s talented, he’s hot and he has a really nice smile,” she said without giving her last name. A longtime usher at the Coliseum said Saturday’s was the best behaved audience he’s ever seen at the venue for a music event. He said the orderly nature of the event would make things easier for cops since the L.A. Marathon was set to launch the next morning just a few blocks away. The concert, the first of RBD’s current tour of U.S. stadiums, was filmed for future episodes of “Rebelde,” which beats “Oprah” in the ratings in some major cities. When televised in Mexico, the series, which is now two years old, is 18 months ahead of U.S. plot lines. (818) 713-3676 fred.shuster@dailynews.comlast_img read more

first_imgCELTIC will play Italian giants Juventus in the last 16 of the Champions League.Neil Lennon played against the Italians twice in 2001-02 but it is the home game at Celtic Park he will draw inspiration from.Martin O’Neill’s side won 4-3. They went on to lose away in Turin after a blatant dive by Amuruso saw the home side win with a penalty 3-2 in one of the most controversial refereeing decisions in Champions League history.Joos Valgaeren, the Celtic defender, was five yards away from the Italian when he dived.After today’s draw Lennon tweeted: ‘Boooooom…..absolute beauty of a tie…very tough but then they all potentially were..brings back great memories.’Lennon said later:  “The home game is pivotal. We’ll have to take some sort of advantage to Turin. Celtic Park is a very special arena and I’m sure the fans will raise the roof again. “In terms of glamour it’s a beauty. Juventus are one of the great traditional European teams. They’re current Italian champions and finished the group stage very strongly. So in terms of glamour it’s great, in terms of qualification it is going to very tough, but it could have been any of the other teams and it would have been just as tough.“We believe over two games anything is possible. Juventus are littered with world-class stars and have been very consistent over the last 18 months and have got a great winning mentality, but so have we.“To come through the group as impressively as we did, you just never know where you’ll be in a month or two’s time in terms of fitness and form.”The SPL side welcome their Italian opponents to Glasgow on Tuesday, February 12.The away leg, played in Turin’s Juventus Stadium, will take place on Wednesday, March 6. THE HOOPS REPORT: CELTIC DRAW ITALIAN GIANTS JUVENTUS IN CHAMPIONS LEAGUE was last modified: December 20th, 2012 by BrendaShare 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)Tags:THE HOOPS REPORT: CELTIC DRAW ITALIAN GIANTS JUVENTUS IN CHAMPIONS LEAGUElast_img read more