Local Authorities Bill signals strong inconsistency, duplicitous nature of Govt (Pt 2)

first_imgDear Editor,The failure of the Coalition Government to allow the Local Government System to function properly is certainly hurting the Government. The Ministry of Communities is trying desperately to influence the Local Authorities and influence the staff politically. The staff at the Regional Democratic Councils and the NDCs are daily being coerced into doing the dirty work of the PNC. More serious is the fact that the staff are encouraged not to support the work programmes of the various councils.The hiring of staff to work in the Local Authority Areas is blatantly heavily influenced by the PNC arm of the APNU. Many of these staff do not have the necessary basic qualifications: no CXC English or Mathematics, and many Overseers cannot ‘string’ two sentences. The minutes of the meetings are not properly completed month after month because of the lack of capacity of the persons catapulted as Overseers. Budgets are often not sent on time to the Region because of the incompetent preparation and lack of ‘will’ to get the work done by the administrative staff.As for the Guyana Elections Commission’s readiness to hold Local Government Elections before the end of this year, that is highly questionable. Recently, the Chairman of GECOM said the elections body is ready for Local Government Elections, and that only the date needs to be announced. Well, maybe an overdose of senility is affecting not only the Chairman, but most of the Commission’s members and the entire Secretariat.How could the Guyana Elections Commission be ready for elections when it would be embarking on another round of continuous registration later in the month? Those transactions would have to be taken into account before an Official List of Electors is produced for the election. Importantly, lots of work have to be done after the next cycle concludes in three months’ time, after the commencement.New registrants and those attaining the age of 18 would have to be added to the list from the National Register of Registrants. Further, deletions would also have to be done based on upheld objections, and the list would have to be properly scrutinized before actually been put in use.Based on the statements, however, it seems that the Elections Commission would be pushing towards the elections with a list that would be less than a month old, which would not give enough time for proper scrutiny. Yet, moves are being made to amend the Election Laws (Amendment) Act 2000 to facilitate the implementation of continuous registration, so that there could be an electoral list which shall be in force and be routinely updated every six months. Before the considered amendment, the validity of the list was of three-month periods.Some analysts see the conduct of the Local Government Elections, due for later in this year, as a testing ground for the planned rigging of the 2020 General and Regional Elections. The voices of the people will speak again.Respectfully,Neil Kumar.last_img read more

GPSU among trade unions red flagged for not submitting financial returns

first_imgTransparency, accountabilityGPSU President Patrick YardeGPSU among trade unions red-flagged for not submitting financial returnsIn the interest of transparency, trade unions around the world are expected to file their annual returns with regulators, which include financial and membership information. But it has been revealed that a number of trade unions in Guyana owe years in returns.According to a notice from the Trade Union Registry, gazetted on July 27, 2019, over 50 trade unions have outstanding returns. Some outstanding returns date all the way back to before World War II, as is the case with the Amalgamated Transport and General Workers Union (AT&GWU), which won the right to be the sole bargaining body for the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) back in 2009 and has owed returns since 1939.One of the most recognisable names on the list is the Guyana Public Service Union (GPSU), which is headed by its longstanding President, Patrick Yarde. According to the notice, the GPSU has not submitted annual returns from 1949 to 1972; from 1975 to 1995; for three years from 1997; from 2003 to 2009 and from 2012 up to 2017.It was only earlier this month that the GPSU wrote to President David Granger to request a Board of Inquiry (BoI), following what the organisation has described as “unauthorised” spending on the part of the Interim Management Committee (IMC) of the Guyana Public Service Co-operative Credit Union Limited (GPSCCUL).At a press conference, Yarde complained of monies being wasted on several unnecessary contracts. Some of the contracts, according to him, were in excess of US$25,000 for activities for merely six staff members.He further charged that another $2 million was used for air conditioning, while $2.5 million was handed out by the Committee for telephone services and $1.6 million for reviewing security systems.In June last year, the High Court, in an order, reinstated the Government-installed Interim Management Committee (IMC) at the GPSU Credit Union. This was done after High Court Justice Gino Persaud had discharged a previous interim order which was granted to the old management committee to stay the decisions of the IMC until the matter was resolved.Another recognisable name is the Guyana Labour Union (GLU), which represents certain categories of municipal workers at City Hall. According to the notice, the Union owes annual returns for intermittent periods dating from 1960 all the way up to 2017.The National Association of Agricultural, Commercial and Industrial Employees (NAACIE), whose constituency caters largely to sugar workers, was also featured on the list having outstanding returns from 1947 to 1969 and then from 1978 to 2018.last_img read more

Mexico City lawmakers OK legal abortions

first_imgThe new law will require city hospitals to provide the procedure in the first trimester and opens the way for private abortion clinics. Girls under 18 would have to get their parents’ consent. The procedure will be almost free for poor or insured city residents, but is unlikely to attract patients from the United States, where later-term abortion is legal in many states. Under the Mexico City law, women having an abortion after 12 weeks face punishment of three to six months in jail. Those performing abortions after that period would face one to three years in jail. Mexico City is dominated by the leftist Democratic Revolution Party, at odds with President Felipe Calderon’s conservative National Action Party, which opposed the abortion measure. “We go to great lengths to protect (sea) turtle eggs,” said city lawmaker Paula Soto, a member of Calderon’s party. “Lucky turtles! It appears they have more people willing to defend them than some unborn children.” The law alarmed Calderon’s party and prompted authorities to send ranks of riot police to separate chanting throngs of opposing demonstrators outside the city legislature. A crowd of abortion-rights supporters chanting “Yes, we did it!” gathered at a monument to 19th-century anti-clerical reformer Benito Juarez in downtown Mexico City after the vote. “I feel happy, because this is a step forward, not backward, for a woman’s right and freedom to choose … about her body and her life,” said demonstrator Gabriela Cruz, 36. The Roman Catholic Church has protested the measure and Mexico City Cardinal Norberto Rivera led a march through the capital last month in opposition. The Archdiocese said Tuesday that it would “evaluate the moral consequences of the reforms” and said Rivera would have no public comment on the vote until Sunday. The only countries in Latin America and the Caribbean with legalized abortion for all women are Cuba and Guyana. Most others allow it only in cases of rape or when the woman’s life is at risk. Nicaragua, El Salvador and Chile ban it completely. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! MEXICO CITY – Mexico City lawmakers voted to legalize abortion Tuesday, a decision likely to influence policies and health practices across Mexico and other parts of heavily Roman Catholic Latin America. The proposal, approved 46-19, with one abstention, will take effect with the expected signing by the city’s leftist mayor. Abortion opponents have already vowed to appeal the law to the Supreme Court, a move likely to extend the bitter and emotional debate in this predominantly Catholic nation. “Decriminalizing abortion is a historic triumph, a triumph of the left,” said city legislator Jorge Diaz Cuervo, a leftist social democrat who voted for the bill. “Today, there is a new atmosphere in this city. It is the atmosphere of freedom.” Nationally, Mexico allows abortion only in cases of rape, severe birth defects or if the woman’s life is at risk. Doctors sometimes refuse to perform the procedure even under those circumstances. last_img read more

Spend, spend, spend! Five Tottenham signings to sort UCL qualification next season?

first_img Carlos Bacca – Bacca is a name that has been on Tottenham’s lips for a while now and, after plundering 17 goals, that interest has been reinforced. The Colombian striker is a traditional number nine that seems better equipped to the Premier League than Spurs’ last La Liga inquisition; Roberto Soldado. A Bacca-Kane partnership has all the ingredients to be formidable. 5 Victor Wanyama – Continue to find out which mercurial winger is being linked as part of a swap deal – Wanyama has illustrated this season why he is regarded as one of the finest defensive midfielders in the Premier League, playing a major part in Southampton’s miserly rearguard alongside partner in crime Morgan Schneiderlin. While Schneiderlin is keen on Champions League football, Wanyama could be tempted by a reunion with Pochettino at White Hart Lane and would exude a combative influence to the Spurs’ midfield. 5 5 Tottenham manager Mauricio Pochettino has reportedly revealed this week that a striker tops his summer wish list to help allay the burden of goals on Harry Kane.Kane has been magnificent this season – at times carrying his team-mates – as Spurs look set to miss out on Champions League football again.They currently sit seven points adrift of Manchester City in fourth in the Premier League with just five games left as Spurs look set for Europa League qualification for the fifth consecutive season.With a summer clear out imminent to help shift some of the deadwood at White Hart Lane, Pochettino is likely to recoup a substantial amount on players who are surplus to requirments to focus on his own recruitment plans.After another year of falling short of their prime league target, talkSPORT has assembled the top five transfer targets that could elevate Spurs into the top four next season. 5 Kevin Mirallas – Click right to see which forward is available on a free transfer this summer – This is a deal to keep your eyes on as it is appears to be the most likely. On his day, Mirallas is world class, but all too regularly he has flattered to deceive at Everton. With Aaron Lennon seemingly having no future at Tottenham and currently on loan at Goodison Park, a swap deal is in the reckoning and Mirallas, aside from pinching penalties, could prove to be a star turn for Spurs. Kevin Wimmer – Click right to see which midfielder enforcer has worked with Mauricio Pochettino before – Some recent reports suggest a deal for Austrian centre-back Wimmer has already been agreed, but others believe that the 22-year-old is waiting to see if his club FC Koln can secure their Bundesliga status for another season. Either way, he would be an assured presence at the heart of defence – a position that Pochettino has frequently rotated due to injuries and poor form. 5 Yevhen Konoplyanka – Continue to find out which star striker could help take the weight off Harry Kane’s shoulders – Konoplyanka has been flirting with a move to the Premier League, specifIcally Spurs and Liverpool, for several years and with his contract expiring at the end of the season it seems increasingly likely to finally happen this summer. The Ukrainian is a tricky winger and once scored a memorable goal against England at Wembley. last_img read more

Spacecraft enters Mars orbit for a look around

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECasino Insider: Here’s a look at San Manuel’s new high limit rooms, Asian restaurant It will explore Mars and serve as a communications relay in low orbit for four years and is expected to churn out the most detailed information ever about the planet and its climate and landscape. In the fall, the orbiter will begin exploring the Martian atmosphere, scan the surface for evidence of ancient water and scout for future landing sites to send robotic and possibly human explorers. The $720 million mission is managed by JPL in Pasadena. Graf predicted that the scientific results of the mission will be extensive. “It will rewrite the science textbooks on Mars,” Graf said at a post-maneuver news conference. After a seven-month, 310 million-mile journey, the orbiter arrived at Mars on Friday for the risky orbit insertion phase. Project managers had been nervous because of Mars’ reputation of swallowing scientific probes. But the Reconnaissance Orbiter performed the move without problem. As it neared the planet, it fired its main propulsion engines for 27 minutes to slow itself down so that the planet’s gravity could pull it into orbit. At one point during the burn, the spacecraft disappeared behind Mars – as engineers had planned – and was temporarily out of radio contact with controllers. Mission control was visibly tense as it awaited word from the orbiter, which reappeared and signaled that it had entered into an elliptical orbit around Mars that will swing it as close as 250 miles above the surface. “It happened right on the money,” said Dan McCleese, chief scientist for the Mars program at JPL. McCleese, who took part in two previous failed orbiter missions to Mars, said he was worried about the fate of the Reconnaissance Orbiter, but was elated about the current success. “I’m not the jinx anymore,” McCleese joked. The spacecraft will spend seven months dipping into the upper atmosphere to shrink the orbit. The successful mission was welcome news for NASA, which has a mixed record of putting spacecraft into orbit around Mars. In the past 15 years, NASA lost two orbiters back-to-back – the Mars Observer in 1993 and the Mars Climate Orbiter in 1999 – during the orbit-insertion phase. The Reconnaissance Orbiter is the fourth eye on the Martian sky, joining NASA’s Mars Global Surveyor and Mars Odyssey and the European Space Agency’s Mars Express, which have been mapping the planet the past few years. On the surface, the NASA rovers Spirit and Opportunity, continue their robotic geology missions. The newest orbiter is loaded with the most advanced science instruments ever sent to another planet, including a telescopic camera to photograph the surface in unprecedented detail and radar to probe underground for ice and possible evidence of liquid water. “We got the capabilities that will knock your socks off,” said project scientist Richard Zurek. The spacecraft won’t beam back images or data until November. Like previous space probes before it, it will seek evidence of ancient water and other signs that the planet could have been hospitable to life. It will also scan for potential spots to land the next generation of robotic rovers and determine whether human outposts can survive on the dusty planet. Present-day Mars is dry and cold with large caps of frozen water at its poles, but scientists believe the planet was warmer and wetter eons ago – conditions that might have been suitable for life. During the mission’s second phase, the orbiter will transmit data between Earth and Mars. It is expected to serve as a communication relay for the Phoenix Mars Scout, which will explore the icy north pole in 2008 and the Mars Science Laboratory, an advanced rover scheduled to launch in 2009. The Reconnaissance Orbiter’s primary mission will end in 2010. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! PASADENA – A NASA spacecraft successfully slipped into orbit around Mars on Friday, joining a constellation of orbiters already circling the Red Planet after a critical firing of its engines and anxious minutes of silence. Scientists cheered and applauded after the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter emerged from the planet’s shadow and signaled to NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory that the maneuver was a success. “Oh I am very relieved,” project manager Jim Graf said minutes later. “It was picture perfect.” The two-ton spacecraft is the most sophisticated ever to arrive at Mars and is expected to gather more data on the Red Planet than all previous Martian missions combined. last_img read more

K2 LIVE AUDIO BLOG: JASON BLACK REACHES CAMP 1 OF ‘THE SAVAGE’

first_imgAudio Playerhttps://www.donegaldaily.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/msg-41.wav00:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Simply click on the arrow to hear Jason Black’s latest live audio blog especially for Donegal Daily.K2 LIVE AUDIO BLOG: JASON BLACK REACHES CAMP 1 OF ‘THE SAVAGE’ was last modified: July 10th, 2015 by StephenShare 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:audioBlogJason Blacklast_img read more

ABANDONED DOG GIVEN EVERY ‘CHANCE’ AFTER REMARKABLE RECOVERY

first_imgA dog which was left for dead when his owners abandoned him in a garden for almost a month has made a remarkable recovery.The boxer dog was named Chance by horrified animal workers who found him in horrific conditions in the Carrigans/St Johnston area.He couldn’t walk or even move his head after being chained up in a garden without food or water and was only half the weight of a dog his age. But the three year old dog has now made a miraculous recovery and is running around the garden of its rescue home.Ryan McCauley of Donegal Pet Rescue, who found the dog after being tipped off by concerned neighbours, said it’s hard to believe it’s the same dog.“I was horrified when I found the dog and we called it Chance because we wanted to give it every chance.“To be honest I had my doubts if it would survive because it was in the worst condition I have ever seen an animal in. “It couldn’t even lift its head to look at me when we called.“But the vet has done great work and Chance is a different dog today. He is even enjoying little runs around the garden now.“He still has a bit of weight to put on but we are speechless at how well he is doing,” revealed Ryan.He added that Chance’s plight has really caught the imagination of the public and people have been donating everything form money to dog food to help him recover!The charity worker said Gardai are still carrying out an investigation into the circumstances surrounding “That’s a Garda matter now but we are just so happy that it looks like Chance is going to make a full recovery.“When he is up to it, we should have no chance rehoming Chance,” added Ryan.ABANDONED DOG GIVEN EVERY ‘CHANCE’ AFTER REMARKABLE RECOVERY was last modified: April 10th, 2012 by StephenShare 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:ChanceDonegal Pet Rescuelast_img read more

ANGER GROWS AS AIB ‘PUNISH’ FAMILIES WITH NEW MORTGAGE HIKE

first_imgThousands of hard pressed mortgage holders in Donegal have been hit with yet another blow following the news that AIB is to hike up its mortgage interest rate by another 0.5%.Donegal Fianna Fáil Senator Brian Ó Domhnaill has said the decision is further evidence that the banks and the government have completely abandoned mortgage holders.“As a result of this decision, the average Donegal mortgage holder on the AIB variable interest rate will pay an extra €50 a month on their mortgage,” Senator Ó Domhnaill said. “This is a significant increase in basic monthly bills at a time when families across Donegal are already seriously struggling to make ends meet.“I am appalled at the Government’s complete failure to take any action to address the fundamental unfairness in how variable rate customers are treated by banks. Customers on variable rates are paying hundreds more a month on their mortgages compared to tracker rate customers.“Take for example of two different mortgage customers in Donegal with an outstanding mortgage of €200,000 and 20 years remaining. One customer is on a tracker rate of 1.75% and the other is on a variable rate of 4%. The customer on the tracker rate pays €224 less per month than the variable rate customer.  That equates to €2,685 less a year and €53,700 less over the lifetime of the mortgage. This is a disgrace.“Is the government willing to stand back and allow variable rate customers continue to be the fall guy for losses incurred elsewhere in the banks?  The State owns AIB.  Why can’t the Finance Minister step in and prevent such a terribly unfair hike on variable rate customers? “I am calling on Fine Gael and Labour to set out their strategy for addressing this incredibly unfair situation, which affects thousands of mortgage holders in Donegal.  Their failure to stand up for struggling mortgage holders is a disgrace.” ANGER GROWS AS AIB ‘PUNISH’ FAMILIES WITH NEW MORTGAGE HIKE was last modified: October 4th, 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:ANGER GROWS AS AIB ‘PUNISH’ FAMILIES WITH NEW MORTGAGE HIKElast_img read more

Game benefits flooding evacuees

first_imgBrian DeBose, left, and brother Stephen DeBose, right, are residents of California after Hurricane Katrina wiped out their New Orleans home. They’ll play football for Valencia High on Friday.Game benefits flooding evacuees AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 Valencia helps out N.O. family Evacuated New Orleans players on Valencia team By Gerry Gittelson, Staff Writer VALENCIA – Valencia High’s newest football players, brothers Brian and Stephen DeBose, finally have a chance to catch their breath after arriving from Louisiana as Hurricane Katrina evacuees. Their first official game won’t be until Friday – Brian is a senior receiver and Stephen is a sophomore offensive lineman – but the boys and their parents felt the scope of the Valencia program’s benevolence during a 51-30 victory over Birmingham of Lake Balboa at Valencia’s first home game of the season Friday. All proceeds from Friday’s program sales were donated to the family, who are staying at an aunt’s house near campus after their house in New Orleans – and all of their possessions, including three cars – were destroyed in the flood that followed the hurricane and levee break. “It’s almost overwhelming. They’ve made us feel so at home from the first time we visited here and met the football coaches,” said father Noel DeBose. “They made us feel so welcome from day one, and now everything has mushroomed.” Members of Valencia’s booster program have opened a bank account for donations and provided clothes and services. Proceeds from game programs over the first three home games of the season – which should amount to $2,000 to 3,000 – will go to the DeBoses, according to booster president John Deutsch. “As soon as I met these kids, my heart just went out to them, and I’ve done everything I can,” said Sharon Mastro, mother of defensive lineman Matt Mastro. “Then I called their mother and told them to just let me know what they needed. Our coach, Larry Muir, said all of us will do whatever it takes.” Denise DeBose said her sons and husband are coping better than expected, and the family has been so well-received by the community that they’re already planning to rent a nearby apartment as soon as possible. “We can can either dwell on our problems and cry – which we’ve done – or we can pick up the pieces and move on,” said Denise, a special education teacher. “Sometimes, I still wake up in the morning and say, `What happened?’ It will never be the same because we used to have 40 to 50 relatives in New Orleans get together for Thanksgiving and Christmas and Good Friday every year, and we’re never going to be able to do that again because everyone has moved around to different states. But our sons seem to love California, so it looks like we’re here to stay.” The brothers have practiced with the team but aren’t allowed to officially participate in a game until this week because of transfer restrictions. Brian has been given jersey No. 48, and Stephen is No. 54. Their teammates have tried to make the boys feel as welcome as possible, and even the cheerleaders have helped out, chipping in to buy the brothers a pair of $50 Sports Chalet gift certificates. “I made a batch of chocolate chip cookies and gave them to Stephen,” said junior Stephanie Cassotta, a cheerleader. “He was kind of shy but he said thank you. We just want to give them everything we can because they’ve lost everything.” Gerry Gittelson, (661) 257-5218 gerry.gittelson@dailynews.com 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img

Live updates: Raiders vs. Cardinals in preseason, Thursday night

first_imgMurray, the Heisman Trophy winning quarterback who spurned the A’s after Oakland chose him with its top pick last year, will see a good amount of action against the Raiders. New coach Kliff Klingsbury indicated Murray will play more than last week’s 10-play debut in the Cardinals’ 17-13 win over the Chargers.Th … We’ll have live scoring updates, news and analysis from the Raiders’ preseason game against No. 1 overall pick Kyler Murray and the Cardinals in Arizona on Thursday at 5 p.m.last_img read more