Mass Protest Planned

first_imgThe Daily Observer has reliably learned of massive preparations underway that will involve tens of thousands of Liberians for a peaceful nation-wide demonstration.According to the organizers of the march, the protestors will peacefully assemble on or before March 6, 2014 to register their opposition to the recent legislation passed by the Legislature prohibiting the board of governors of the Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) from contesting any political seat for three consecutive years after the expiration of their tenures.The controversial legislation amends the 1999 Act of the CBL, which already prohibits the governor, his deputies, and board of governors from contesting political seats while serving their tenures. The lawmakers were said to believe that banning the board of governors of the CBL for three consecutive years after their tenures have expired, will help depoliticize the CBL. The heavily criticized legislation also gives lawmakers exclusive powers to determine whether or not an offense has been committed by the executive governor or a member of the board of governors of the CBL and “to take necessary action of impeachment in keeping with relevant provisions of the Constitution.” According to the 1999 Financial Institution Act, “a member of the board of governors can be removed from office upon a bill of impeachment by the House of Representatives upon a finding by a majority of the board of governors and the recommendation of the President for gross breach of duty; misconduct of office; conviction of a felony and being declared bankrupt.” Part II (4) (1) of the 1999 Act which gave the CBL the power to issue legal tender and banknotes and coins was also amended  to say that the CBL shall “supply” legal tender and banknotes and coins. The planners of the march have denounced the bill and vowed to resist it.Organizers of the march are contending that by giving itself these powers, the legislature is scraping the CBL of its legal and international best practice mandate as a central bank. They disclosed that the march will take place on or before March 6, 2014 and will be held at the Capitol Building and the Foreign Ministry. “We are going to tell President Sirleaf not to sign that unconstitutional bill into law,” said one organizer.Functions of a central bankAccording to international best practice, a central bank (reserve bank) or monetary authority is an institution that manages a state’s currency, money supply, and interest rates. Central banks also usually oversee the commercial banking system of their respective countries and are institutionally designed to be independent from political interference, with limited control by the executive and legislative bodies.  In contrast to a commercial bank, a central bank possesses a monopoly on increasing the amount of money in the nation, and usually prints the national currency, which usually serves as the nation’s legal tender.Lawmakers’ argument  Members of the legislature are, however, contending that they have the constitutional authority to print and issue the national currency even though they (legislators) “mistakenly” delegated that authority to the CBL back in 1999.LINSU, Others Condemn BillThe Liberia National Student Union (LINSU) was the first to condemn the legislation. In a widely publicized statement issue last week, LINSU described the law as “a bad law gear towards fostering disunity and witch hunting.” LINSU’s president Varney Jarsey and secretary general Benedict Williams vowed to fight the law to death. The presidents of various universities’ student unions including the University of Liberia Student Union (ULSU), AME Zion University Student Union (AMEZUSU), United Methodist University Student Union (UMUSU), Cuttington University Student Union (CUSU), Smythe and Tubman University (TU) have also jointly affixed their signatures to a strong press statement condemning the Bill. The Citizens Solidarity Council has also condemned the Bill and threatened legal action against the Legislature. Also condemning the Bill is renowned Liberian constitutional lawyer and former Labor Minister, Cllr. Tiawon Gongloe, who has argued that the bill violates Article 11 of the Liberian Constitution. Hundreds of callers on various phone-in talk shows have also condemned the Bill and called on President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to veto it in the name of peace and good governance.Some Lawmakers’ Condemnation of the BillSome lawmakers on Capitol Hill have also declared their opposition to the law seeking to bar Liberians from contesting for political offices after the expiration of their tenures with the CBL.Montserrado County Representative Thomas Fallah of the opposition Congress for Democratic Change (CDC) wondered whether supporters of the Bill took into consideration the constitutional rights of those affected by such a law.Rep. Fallah frowned at the haste with which the Lower House concurred with the Bill, which emanated from the Senate, without sending it to the Committee room for advice to the plenary. Another CDC lawmaker who voted against the Bill in the Lower House, Julius Berrien, described the law as bad and unconstitutional. Our Capitol Hill sources hinted to our reporter during the week that House Speaker Jenekai Alex Tyler of the ruling Unity Party (UP) requested plenary to suspend the House’s Standing Rules before voting on the Bill to allow all motions for reconsideration to be tried on the floor on the same day. “This is because he realized that most of the lawmakers were in favor of passing the Bill,” said this source on condition of anonymity.Why was the Bill Passed?Our sources declared that the CBL Act was amended in order to “clip the wings” of Executive Governor Dr. J. Mills Jones, whom the lawmakers perceived as gaining political capital in the country. The CBL boss has gained strong popularity across Liberia for his “inclusive economic” policy under which the CBL is providing economic stimuli to key sectors of the economy through bank and non-bank financial institutions.With the high poverty level in Liberia especially in rural parts, many Liberians, mainly businesses—both small and large—consider Governor Jones as one who understands their plight and that of the Liberian economy. This paper has been told that politicians on Capitol Hill, who are eyeing the presidency come 2017, see Governor Jones as their greatest threat should he decide to contest. The CBL boss’ second and final tenure as Executive Governor of the CBL is expected to end in 2016.President Sirleaf’s DilemmaPolitical analysts believe that the passage of the controversial Amended CBL Act by the legislature puts President Sirleaf in a critical political position. Executive Mansion sources hinted to our reporter over the weekend that the President is disturbed by the decision of the Legislature to enact a law that directly contravenes international best practice. These sources, however, noted that the President is weighing in on the issue of the US$73 million district development bill recently submitted by House Speaker Alex Tyler.The bill, which seeks to set aside US$73 million exclusively for district development across the country, lacks basic elements of financial management. Citing failure of the County Development Fund, these sources noted that the President seems unprepared to approve the US$73 million bill due to accountability issues. Though these sources didn’t say whether the President will sign the amended CBL Act to appease the Legislature, they told our reporter that doing so would put her credibility on the line. They also told our reporter that President Sirleaf is keenly watching the political interplay on Capitol Hill following rumors that Vice President Joseph Boakai and House Speaker Alex Tyler, all of the ruling UP, are considering contesting the 2017 presidential and general elections. Internal wrangling within the governing UP has been fueled by a power- struggle over who should replace President Sirleaf as standard bearer. The big question is: will President Sirleaf risk what political capital and credibility she has left and sign a law that violates the Constitution and ruins the CBL, to appease lawmakers on Capitol Hill?   Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

‘Dr. Jones Not A “JJC”‘

first_imgDr. Jones and running mate Dr. Reeves Eighteen Montserrado Communities endorse JonesEighteen communities of Electoral District #5 in Montserrado County who endorsed Dr. J. Mills Jones’ candidacy told thousands of his supporters that he is not a “Johnny Just Come (JJC)” to the fight against poverty or the recognition that Liberians must be empowered to build a strong and diversified economy.Dr. Jones was petitioned over the weekend at a program marking the dedication of a special project named in his honor. The group said Liberians should not be fooled particularly when it comes to the fight to empower the citizenry and to lift them out of poverty, adding: “It is you, Dr. Jones, who we know as the torchbearer.”“Until this election time, you were the lone voice and champion for lifting Liberians out of poverty and for taking steps to put the economy in the hands of Liberians. To those who are now preaching the fight against poverty, we say to them, this is not your area,” the group said.The group said they believe in the vision of Dr. Jones and will ensure that he wins the presidency in October.“We trust you because that is your area. And this election will be about trust, not empty promises. We believe that you will use those qualities of honesty, fairness, thoughtfulness, trustworthiness, to create a better balance between the high and the low, the poor and the rich, the doctors and the zogos, the big business people and the pepper dealer,” the group said in its petition statement.“That is the reason why we the people of the 18 communities that make up District #5 in Montserrado County have come to pledge support to your candidacy to become Liberia’s next president come October 10, 2017.“We want to assure you that we will campaign from door to door to make sure that our dream for you to be the next President of Liberia is realized…we are about to go on record to endorse Liberia’s best, innovative, charismatic and bold leader who is willing to take risks for the happiness of his people.”The statement further said Dr. J. Mills Jones has worked effectively in every office he has occupied before throwing his hat in the race for president, adding that he is not just a Liberian with integrity and a good name, but also a son who has combined integrity with action to help lift Liberians out of poverty, as well as helping Liberian business people to play a more meaningful role in the economy.Beyond every doubt, they said, Dr. Jones is the most qualified and best suited person in the race to become President of the Republic of Liberia. “This is because he has been there for the Liberians when he was in government, and he is still there with us when he is out of government. We believe that he will be there for us in the future, considering his past record,” the group added.Several of the 18 communities are Police Academy, Swakamore, AB Tolbert Road, Bassa Town, Town Hall, Telecom, 72nd, Voka Mission, Swamp Side, Sand Town, Kpelle Town, Weh Town, Pacos Island and Red Light.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

President promises other half of severance for sugar workers

9 months later…as PPP supporters berate “election gimmicks”Nine months after the Government paid hundreds of workers half their severance, President David Granger has committed to ensuring that dismissed sugar workers receive the balance of their severance pay after Parliament resumes this week after its recess.The Head of State’s assurance comes ahead of the November 12 Local Government Elections as he addressed an A Partnership for National Unity (APNU) meeting at Rose Hall, Corentyne, Berbice, Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne).However, while he was simultaneously making his announcement on Friday, he was greeted by angry protesters representing the People’s Progressive Party (PPP), who cried out about their continuing challenges since Government closed two estates in Berbice. Party regional supervisor, Zamal Hussain told the press that they gathered to remind the President that he has an obligation to the people of Region Six.”He is here for a political activity which is to campaign for the Local Government Elections, and as such, we find it fit that we protest against certain issues; for instance we want to remind him that crime is on the upsurge in Region Six.”Hussain said too that they wanted to send a strong reminder to the President that the region has been heavily dependent on the sugar industry.“The economic situation across the entire country is coming to a halt now… we are not allowing the President to come here with his election gimmick again and to tell people to vote for his party; the one which has destroyed this country,” the PPP representative lamented.However, it was an atmosphere of stark contrast when the President addressed his supporters, observing that his Government is all for local democracy and that is why LGEs are being held for a second time under his Administration. At the same time, Granger once again criticised the handling of the industry by his predecessors. This comes almost one month after the President reiterated that his Administration has been forced to pump billions of Guyana dollars into the sugar industry to bail it out.“The sugar industry was operating on subsidies; they were producing sugar at a higher cost than they were selling it for…  we have not closed sugar, we want to have an efficient industry; one which will make money and be profitable. So we will have one Estate in East Berbice, one in West Berbice and one East Demerara,” the Head of State noted on Friday.It was after these comments that the President indicated that workers would be paid their severance.“At the beginning of the year, we said severance pay will be paid in two parts; one part in the first half of the year and the second part in the second half of the year. Next week we will go to the National Assembly to pass supplementary provisions for payment in the second half. Sugar workers are going to get their severance pay,” the President observed.Speaking on LGE, he said Rose Hall could become one of the industrial hubs of the Region, while also highlighting that the town did not support the APNU at the 2016 LGE.“You have a powerful agricultural region and you have a powerful town which could guide the commercial activity of this region…Regardless of which party they represent, you choose the person who will represent you the best,” he said.The meeting was also used to introduce the APNU constituency candidates for Rose Hall.Under Granger’s presidency, four estates have been closed by the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) under the entity’s austerity measures to alleviate its cash-strapped status. After the closure of Wales in December 2016, the Skeldon and Rose Hall estates in Berbice and the East Demerara (Enmore) Estate was shuttered. The closures left thousands of workers jobless.The numbers revealed that 1851 workers were terminated from Skeldon, while Rose Hall accounted for 1181 workers being severed. There were also 1480 from the East Demerara Sugar Estate losing employment under the cost-cutting decisions.However, a small percentage of these workers were rehired under the Special Purposes Unit (SPU) as that entity kept the estates running in a bid to secure private investors.Government had acquired $1.931 billion in an effort to provide 50 per cent of severance packages to the fired workers. Some $609 million was paid out to Skeldon workers, while $705 million was paid to Rose Hall workers, and $815 million was paid to East Demerara workers. $150 million was paid out to the Wales workers over the last few years. read more

SRHR Adventures hosts infertility symposium

first_imgRegarded as an innovative and unique venture by the Ministry of Public Health, a recently held infertility symposium was held to have persons discuss what is considered a taboo subject.The symposium was facilitated by the Sexual and Reproductive Health and Rights (SRHR) Adventures, a Non-Governmental Organisation, at Moray’s House on September 14.Coordinator of SRHR Adventures, Dr. Faqueeda Watson-JonesDoctors and other interested stakeholders attending the meeting listened to presentations on the prevalence of infertility, how it affects couples and alternatives that can be sought after.Infertility is a condition in women which causes the inability to conceive a child. This could be as a result of an untreated Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STD) such as Chlamydia. It can also be as a result of delayed pregnancies or botched abortions. Men are also affected by infertility through poor behavioural patterns and health practices which can result in a weak sperm count.Addressing the gathering on behalf of the Minister of Public Health was Chief Medical Officer (CMO), Dr Shamdeo Persaud, who explained that statistics indicated that about 5 per cent of persons worldwide are affected by infertility. This, he said, accounts for a significant figure worldwide.Further disaggregating the numbers, the statistics show that 30 per cent of infertility cases are as a result of factors relating to men, while 25-40 per cent are as a result of female issues. About 28 per cent of infertility cases are as a result of factors relating to couples (both men and women) and this includes incompatibility.Chief Medical Officer, MoPH, Dr. Shamdeo PersaudIn explaining the effects of infertility, Dr Persaud said “it [infertility] has a very wide reach, both from an individual point of view with personality issues, and in cases with couples’ – failed marriages, interpersonal relationships and even in some instances violence and distrust develop in families. We need to address some of those issues in a broader context and I am happy that psychologists and family counsellors are involved.”This issue has escalated socially resulting in persons seeking desperate solutions to correct infertility. From the perspective of the Ministry of Public Health, the CMO noted that though it is a small issue, it has a great impact on sexual and reproductive health, often leading to emotional challenges.“Infertility has been a challenge that is growing worldwide. Here in Guyana, we are no exception and we have noted that more and more, especially through social media and other outlets, that persons are trying to seek services that could enhance their own capacity,” Dr Persaud said.The symposium was themed, “What the fertility! Navigating the ups and downs of another ‘F’ word.” Coordinator of SRHR Adventures, Dr Faqueeda Watson-Jones remarked that after attending a seminar in Canada focusing on infertility, she realised that this is a sensitive topic that is not discussed enough, as there is little research done in the area.“We would have noticed on social media that there are a lot of persons who lack the knowledge of infertility or they have issues with it, hence the reason for this symposium targeting males and females to address infertility issues and explore factors which contribute to the knowledge, attitude and cultural conditions surrounding infertility.”In response, the Health Ministry has opted to first ensure that testing and treatment for STDs are available for both men and women across Guyana whether in private or public facilities. Also, through maternal health and family planning services, women can be advised on fertility treatment options available locally.last_img read more

Toshaos Council accuses Govt of elections meddling

first_imgFollowing the first executive meeting of the National Toshaos Council (NTC) in late February, the Indigenous peoples’ representative body is now accusing Government, through its advisers in the Indigenous Peoples’ Affairs Ministry, of interfering in the affairs of some Village Councils.“There are communities whose Council members have been sanctioned to meetings without the Toshao’s knowledge to undermine the credibility and legitimacy of the Toshao and Village Councils,” the NTC said in a letter to its members.“They (the Government) are seeking to politicise the office of the Toshao… this is a threat to the Indigenous peoples as it would see no moment of any of these issues,” the letter added.The letter, seen by Guyana Times, also addressed the Government’s total disregard for the Council’s budgetary needs. The NTC informed the Toshaos that it requested a subvention that was in keeping with the requirements of its mandate, but instead, Government handed them a measly $16 million subvention.In the past, the NTC highlighted that approximately $4 million is required to facilitate one of the four quarterly meetings for Council executives, pointing out that the quarterly meetings alone would consume the total budgetary allocation. They related that this leaves no money for the Council to travel to various isolated and hard to reach Indigenous communities to host outreaches to promote good governance and educate the Indigenous people of their rights.“They (the Government) have also given $50 million to Bina Hill Institute and $30 million to Arnaputa – a new NDC (Neighbourhood Democratic Council). While we do not disagree that these are needed resources for these two important institutions, the NTC represents over 83,000 Indigenous people in over 212 communities while Bina Hill has a population of roughly 200 and Arnaputa has less than 3000. This shows that they are not committed to the Indigenous peoples,” the NTC noted.Additionally, the NTC noted that to date, there has been no movement on the Government’s part to have a revision of the Amerindian Act, despite the entire Amerindian community calling on Government to have this done.“Because of the non-movement by the Government, the NTC, APA (Amerindian Peoples’ Association), UMDC (Upper Mazaruni District Council), NPDC (North Pakaraimas District Council) and several other organisations have taken a proactive step to this revision process. We have asked the Government to come on board with “The Peoples” proposal on moving it forward,” the letter informed.However, it was indicated that Government has yet to respond to that suggestion.Land titlingThe Council also accused the Government of not staying true to the 2013 agreement between Guyana and the Kingdom of Norway to address the issue of land titling.In 2013, Guyana in collaboration with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) signed a US$10.7 million Amerindian Land Titling Contract facilitated under the Guyana/Norway agreement.The NTC informed that under the project, some 67 communities were supposed to be titled and Government had committed to not renew and grant new leases in Indigenous communities, proposed titled area or extension.“What we now know is that they have not held to this commitment. In fact, we now understand that they are speeding up the processing of leases in some areas. Rockstone for example has such an issue,” the Council noted.“There are also significant issues surrounding Nappi and Satellite and Yupikari. The Government has taken an aggressive step to dispossess these communities of their ancestral lands. The community has said when options are exhausted, they intend on protesting in Georgetown and the NTC is fully in support of them,” the letter indicated.The NTC informed its members that if those issues are not addressed then they will forever be begging for their rights to be respected. Additionally, they noted it has nothing to do with politics acknowledging that some communities received support from various administrations but further stated that successive governments have had the opportunity to holistically address the issues plaguing the Indigenous communities but have all failed to do so.“If the Government cannot commit to implementing a change for our peoples and address ‘our peoples’ rights’, we are asking all our peoples – ‘The Indigenous peoples’ to gather in Georgetown for a ‘mass protest’ for our peoples’ rights. We should not be silent anymore!” the letter concluded.last_img read more

Linden-led Jump Rope team performs at World C/ships

first_imgThe first Jump Rope Team out of Linden departed these shores on July 1 to attend the World Jump Rope Championships and Camp at the University of Central Florida in Orlando, Florida, USA.Tyrese Thornhill during one of his performancesThe team has made history as the first from Guyana to participate in this event. Members of the Linden team include team Leader Lindley Langhorne, Head Coach Shavin Greene, Assistant Coach Odella Hilken, and twelve jumpers: Ashanti Antigua, Akiela Johnson, Serena Drakes, Amnesha Charles, Rodwell Halley, Tyrese Thornhill, Prince Beckles, Adriell Wilson, Safron Grenville, Deshanti Grenville, Shannae Worrell and Jannee Greene.Being the first year at a world class event, the jumpers participated in both novice and junior categories. Langhorne believes that hard work has paid off for the entire team, which he noted has pushed to perform at its best.“It was not seen as an opportunity to participate, but as one to compete at this level. The team participated in the possible events for their age category and level”, Langhorne stated.31 countries were represented at the event, and there were over 800 competitors.The first event Guyana participated in was the Female 4 x 30 Speed, and the team that made the first jump for Guyana comprised of Ashanti Antigua, Akiela Johnson, Serena Drakes and Amnesha Charles.“It will be good to have the support of the relevant authorities to ensure the establishment of the Guyana Jump Rope Federation for the further development of the sport”, Langhorne said. He added that a total of eight prizes were obtained, which were shared among six jumpers.The following results were obtained:Speed 1 x 30 secondsMale 15 years and olderJoint 5th – Rodwell Halley & Tyrese ThornhillFemale 13-14 yrs.4th – Amnesha Charles3-mins SpeedMale 15 years and olderAdriel Wilson – 3rdFemale 13-14 yearsAmnesha Charles – 5thSingle Rope FreestyleMale 15 years and olderAdriell Wilson – 5thFemale 13-14 yearsAkiela Johnson – 2ndFemale 15 years and olderDeshanti Grenville – 4thlast_img read more

Sleepless Hornish ready for race

first_imgFONTANA – At 10 p.m. on Thursday, Sam Hornish Jr. was still testing his Indy Racing League car in Homestead, Fla. After four hours of circling a track on the other side of the country, the defending Indianapolis 500 champion hopped on a private jet headed for Ontario and arrived at 3:30 a.m. local time. “(In the IRL), I know exactly what it needs to feel like to go out there and be fast,” he said. “Here, it’s `How can we make it better?’ I’m like, `Well, it could have less push,’ and they ask, `How do you want us to do that?’ “Well, I don’t know. I don’t know about wedge and track bar and stuff like that.” Hornish averaged over 207 mph in winning the IRL race in September 2003, but won’t top 180 mph today in what he describes as his “extracurricular activity.” He was 11th in the final practice, but the favorites to win are the usual suspects – one of the 24 Nextel Cup regulars entered in the race. That group used to be called the “Buschwhackers,” but everyone seems so used to their presence that the label has lost some of its impact. Drivers to watch include Carl Edwards and anyone else driving for Roush Fenway Racing Matt Kenseth and Greg Biffle among them. Defending series champion Kevin Harvick is in the field, but he’s driving the No.33 Kevin Harvick Inc. car instead of the title-winning No.21 Richard Childress Racing entry, which has rookie Timothy Peters in the seat. Peters is making his second career start after finishing 13th at Memphis last year. Other big names in the field include Tony Stewart, Kyle Busch, Denny Hamlin and Jeff Burton. Local favorite David Gilliland will be making his second start in the No. 25 freecreditreport.com entry for Team Rensi Motorsports. Busch qualifying begins at 12:10 p.m. today, sandwiched between two Nextel Cup practices. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Hornish’s attempt to pilot the slower, heavier stock cars continues today with the Stater Bros. 300, a race which is two cars short of a full field on the entry list. So far, Hornish has made three Busch starts, with last week’s 31st-place effort at Daytona standing as his best finish to date. The three-time IRL champion crashed in his first two starts last year and hit the wall at Daytona, but was able to complete the race. “I’m getting close to the point where the goal is just to come in without any dented sheet metal,” Hornish said Friday with a wry smile. Of course, Hornish has more than enough talent to win a Busch race. In addition to the three titles and his Indy 500 victory, he has won two IRL races at California Speedway, including a win in the fastest race in history. It’s just a matter of getting acclimated to a different type of race car. center_img Bleary-eyed, he checked into his hotel at 4 a.m. His head barely had hit the pillow before the alarm went off, buzzing with a reminder that he had to be at California Speedway by 7a.m. He was there by 6:30. Sleep? Forget it. Not when the Penske Racing driver is working on a potential second career in the NASCAR Busch Series. last_img

Oil price goes up after OPEC makes deal to cut oil production

first_imgFORT ST. JOHN, B.C. – According to an article from the CBC, oil went up 6% today after OPEC sources have said that the group has come to a deal to limit crude oil output.Brent crude went up up $2.76 (6%), at $48.73 a barrel today.The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) will limit production to 32.5 million barrels per day, which is apparently 750,000 barrels lower than what it produced in August.- Advertisement -The article also said, according to two OPEC sources, the agreement is the first deal since 2008 where the agreement to cut oil has been struck.last_img read more

SECOND-HALF GOAL BLITZ FROM CORK ENDS DONEGAL’S NATIONAL LEAGUE HOPES

first_imgDonegal have been beaten by Cork in their National League semi-final clash at Cork.A second-half blitz of goals from Cork ensured the Rebel County would contest the 2015 Allianz National League final in a fortnight’s time at Croke Park.In what was an absolutely cracking encounter at Croker it was Cork who struck the fatal blows by scoring THREE goals in the second-half.The sides couldn’t be separated at half-time but a quick brace of goals inside five minutes from Colm O’Neill and Brian Hurley inflicted real damage on Rory Gallagher’s side. However, points from Martin McElhinney, Michael Murphy and Colm McFadden brought them to within a score of Cork.Then a major turning point, Christy Toye found Patrick McBrearty inside and he was one-on-one with the Cork goalkeeper O’Halloran.Unfortunately for Donegal McBrearty was thwarted by O’Halloran and within TWO minutes Cork had the ball in the back of the net again.A great team move by Cork and superb play from Brian Hurley released Colm O’Neill who scored his second goal of the match. That effectively decided the game as a contest and Cork ultimately ran out comfortable winners in the last ten minutes with a six-point cushion between the sides.Murphy and McBrearty added late scores to reduce the deficit to four points but it was too little too late and Cork booked their place in the final.Rory Gallagher won’t be too despondent about the defeat, but he and his management staff will be worried about the concession of the goals.Donegal don’t cough up goals too easily, but they were exposed badly in the second-half as Cork helped themselves to three goals.Tom Clancy found the net in the first-half for Brian Cuthbert’s side who delivered an accomplished performance. Next up for Donegal is the Ulster Championship clash with Tyrone in just FIVE weeks time.SECOND-HALF GOAL BLITZ FROM CORK ENDS DONEGAL’S NATIONAL LEAGUE HOPES was last modified: April 12th, 2015 by Mark ForkerShare 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:CorkCroke ParkdonegalGAANational Leaguenewssemi-finalSportlast_img read more

Nigeria winning war against polio

first_imgBill Gates during a visit to Nigeria. Cases of polio have been drastically reduced in the world. (Images: Polio Eradication) MEDIA CONTACTS • Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Media Inquiries (206) 709-3400 RELATED ARTICLES • New drive to fight polio in Africa • ‘The end of meningitis in Africa’ • Vaccines for a healthier Africa • On the trail of polio viruses Bongani Nkosi After years of battling polio outbreaks, Nigeria is making impressive progress in eradicating the highly infectious disease, Microsoft chairperson Bill Gates said.Gates visited Africa’s most-populous country in June 2010 as part of his ongoing commitment to improve healthcare standards across the world.After spending time with affected Nigerian communities and speaking to healthcare leaders there, he noted how the country has drastically reduced polio infections.During his trip he visited Kano state in northern Nigeria, which has recorded high infection rates over the years and still remains vulnerable to the virus.“I was very excited to visit northern Nigeria in June, because the progress there since my last visit in February 2009 has been especially impressive,” Gates wrote in his blog published on 26 July.Just five polio cases had been reported in Nigeria by 14 July this year, compared to hundreds recorded in 2009, Gates said.Through the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the US business magnate and philanthropist provides much-needed funding to fight polio outbreaks across the world.A campaign to immunise more than 6-million children under the age of five had just begun in Nigeria when Gates arrived.Some residents are wary of the free vaccine, Gates said, but community leaders are always on hand to explain its necessity.“Because the polio vaccine is free and brought to people in their homes, some people think there must be something wrong with it.“Community leaders play a critically important role in helping to overcome mistrust, and a big focus of anti-polio efforts is on informing these leaders and enlisting their support,” Gates said.Pro-immunisation messagesIt was in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, where Gates picked up on the innovative ways used to promote immunisation. “Pro-immunisation messages are being embedded in the plotlines of popular TV entertainment programmes, for example,” while “one of Nigeria’s largest mobile phone service providers has agreed to send out about 25-million free text messages on polio and health,” he said.Gates has been working with Nigerian government officials, including new President Goodluck Jonathan, Minister of Health Onyebuchi Chukwu and several state governors, whom he met during the recent trip.“Commitment from Nigeria’s leaders has been crucial in advancing the nation’s fight against polio,” said Gates. “I was very impressed with Nigeria’s progress against polio. I tried to encourage everyone to not let up.”West African crisisThe country’s northern states experienced a particularly devastating polio outbreak in 2009, with about 258 type 3 and 103 type 2 cases recorded in July that year, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO). This accounted for 24% of cases globally, but 2010’s figures are far more encouraging.Nigeria also had highest number of polio cases anywhere in the world in 2008, estimated at 798. The outbreak also affected neighbouring countries and spread as far as Angola, Kenya and Mauritania.According to statistics provided by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative, Nigeria is among the countries that have recorded fewer cases this year. Tajikistan remains the nation with the highest number of reported cases: by 12 June 2010, there were 425.Senegal has seen 18 cases, making it the country with the highest record in West Africa in 2010. Liberia, Mauritania, Mali, Niger and Sierra Leone have also recorded isolated cases.A “mop-up” immunisation campaign is scheduled for Mali on 30 July. The Global Polio Eradication Initiative said it will be spread “across high-risk districts of Mali and Mauritania, with a special focus on targeting nomadic populations”.Getting rid of polio for goodGlobally, polio cases have been reduced by 99% in the past two decades, but funding initiatives that target outbreaks needs to be strengthened, Gates said.The world is, however, is on the right path “because of some great efforts, particularly by the Global Polio Eradication Initiative”, he added.The initiative involves the WHO, Rotary International, the US Centres for Disease Control and Prevention and the UN Children’s Fund.The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has set aside US$10-billion (about R73-billion) over the next decade for the development and distribution of vaccines in the world’s poorest countries. “We’re also supporting work to improve polio surveillance,” said Gates.last_img read more