Bassa District Youth Need Health Facility

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first_imgThe president of the Gianda Youth Development Association (GIYODA)  in Kpogbahn Statutory District No. 4, Grand Bassa County, has stressed the need  for health facility in Gianda Clan in the district.Mr. G. William Olu Diggs told the Daily Observer that there are more than 100 towns and villages in the clan and some parts of Rivercess County that are in need of the health facility to meet their health needs.He disclosed that since the establishment of the clan some years back, government has not built any health facility in the clan to cater to the health needs of the inhabitants in that part of the district.According to him, they have and continue to find it difficult taking patients, especially pregnant women, in hammocks about eight hours’ walk from the Zondo Community to the Compound #4 Clinic in the district for medical attention.He added that they also find it difficult carrying patients from the clan to the Liberian Agricultural Company Hospital in District #3, since the company does not accept or allow their ambulance to go outside the plantation for patients, especially during the current Ebola crisis in the country.The GIYODA president is therefore appealing to the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare and other international health related organizations or other humanitarian groups to help build a health facility near the Zondo Mission Community in Gianda Clan in the district to curtail the health problems.He used the interview to recommend one Mr. Madison Gbogbah-Tarr, a rural health worker who serves as a focal person for the Grand Bassa County Health Team, who will properly manage activities of the health center if government and her partners should consider addressing their appeal for the health facility.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Ronaldo bust swapped at Madeira airport

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first_img0Shares0000The new bust on the left is deemed a better likeness than the controversial original at Cristiano Ronaldo International Airport at Funchal, Madeira © AFP/File / FRANCISCO LEONG, Helder SANTOSLISBON, Portugal, Jun 18 – The controversial bronze bust of Cristiano Ronaldo at the airport on Madeira which bears his name has been replaced, Portuguese media reported on Monday.“This bust is much better than the other one, that’s what everyone thinks,” Hugo Aveiro, brother of the five-time Ballon d’or, winner, told the Diario de Noticias da Madeira newspaper. “A Spanish sculptor offered this new bust … so good that we decided to change it,” he added.The original was swapped Friday at the request of the Real Madrid superstar’s entourage, according to local media.The original, by local artist Emanuel Santos, was unveiled 16 months ago at a ceremony to rename the airport after one of Madeira’s most famous sons, CR7 having been born in the capital Funchal.But it was widely mocked, not least for its grimacing smile.“The CR7 museum asked us to replace the bust in tribute to the athlete and we felt we ought to change it,” airport director Duarte Ferreira explained.The Ronaldo museum opened in 2013 and a year later it unveiled a 3.40 metres (10 feet) statue which also caused some mirth owing to its figure-hugging shorts.While his home island concentrates on his likenesses the real Ronaldo is busy at the World Cup. He notched a hat trick to earn a point against Spain a few hours after the airport bust was exchanged.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

Liverpool ‘secret’ arrival, Wenger retirement, United January deal, City £25m signing – Sunday paper rumours

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first_img1 Here is a selection of the top news stories from Sunday’s newspapers…Manchester United scouted 23-year-old Porto defender Bruno Martins Indi at the Champions League win v Chelsea. (O Jogo via Sunday Express) Liverpool could dismiss manager Brendan Rodgers if they lose to Everton in today’s Merseyside derby (Sunday People) and the club are ‘secretly’ setting up a home in Formby for a ‘surprise guest’ to use for an extended stay from November. (Sun on Sunday)Dick Advocaat is expected to leave Sunderland in the next few days. (Sunday Telegraph) According to Paris St-Germain defender David Luiz, Philippe Coutinho will not stay at Liverpool next season if the Reds do not qualify for the Champions League. (Sunday Express) Arsene Wenger says he will make an “impulsive” decision on retirement. (Sun on Sunday) Manchester United goalkeeper Victor Valdes may join Sevilla in January on a free transfer. (Mundo Deportivo) Everton, Liverpool and Southampton are interested in signing £12m-rated 20-year-old Ajax winger Anwar El Ghazi. (Sunday People) Manchester City are favourites to sign Benfica’s 20-year-old Brazilian midfielder Victor Andrade who is valued at £25m by the Portuguese club. (Sunday Mirror) Sam Allardyce is keen to succeed Dick Advocaat as Sunderland manager. (Sunday Times) Nigel Pearson and Sean Dyche are favourites to replace Advocaat. (Star On Sunday)And here is a selection of the top stories on…‘Mourinho is so competitive he is trying to beat Liverpool boss to the sack!’How Liverpool perform with and without SturridgeArsene Wenger admits to wearing women’s clothing (spoof)‘Throw another chariot on the barbie, mate!’ Reaction to England’s World Cup catastrophe Transfer rumours and paper review last_img read more

Leonard hopeful of repeat

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first_img “I’ve loosened up on the golf course, and I enjoy playing at the Hope,” said Leonard, back to defend his title in the Bob Hope Classic. “I’ve been in the celebrity rotation since I started playing.” The five-day Hope Classic begins today. The first four days are pro-am, with only the pros competing on Sunday. The cut is made after Saturday’s round. PALM DESERT — Justin Leonard enjoys playing golf with comedians, singers and celebrity athletes. Many PGA players don’t like the circus atmosphere that goes along with being paired with celebrities in pro-ams. Leonard has learned to go with the flow. Last year, he rallied from three shots back to pass front-runner Joe Ogilvie on his way to a closing 5-under 67. He beat Ogilvie and Tim Clark by three shots. Sean O’Hair, the tour’s 2005 rookie of the year, said he was looking forward to the pro-am. “I think playing with the amateurs, it kind of makes you a little more relaxed, and I player better whenever I’m a bit relaxed. I think everybody does,” said O’Hair, a one-time winner and runner-up last year. Others in the field include Fred Couples, Fred Funk, Davis Love III, Scott Verplank and 2003 Hope champion Mike Weir. The players rotate among four courses the first four days, with the final round of the 90-hole event at the new Classic Course at NorthStar. Leonard, the 1997 British Open champion and winner of 10 titles in his career, is eager to defend his Hope title. “I think the tournaments where I feel like I’ve got a chance are in the desert,” he said. “The greens on the coast, I don’t particularly play well. My best chance is in the desert, and there are only two of those, Phoenix and the Hope. “If I can play well in those events and get off to a good start on the West Coast, I feel like I’m already ahead of the game.” After success at the Hope, Leonard won the St. Jude Classic and went 3-1-1 for the victorious U.S. Presidents Cup team. “It was really a fantastic year, both personally and professionally,” he said. “I was a little disappointed in my play in the majors. That’s something I’d really like to improve on this year.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!center_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGift Box shows no rust in San Antonio Stakes win at Santa Anita Phil Mickelson, who won the Hope in 2002 and 2004, makes his season debut. Mickelson tied for 12th last year and leads the tournament’s all-time earnings list with $1.8 million. Leonard was paired with actor Samuel L. Jackson and two comedians last year. “I played one of the days with Sam Jackson, George Lopez and Cheech Marin. I had a ball,” Leonard said. “Sam is over there contemplating the game of golf and what it means, all this other stuff. And Cheech and George are trying to figure out who has had the best one-liner so far. That just cracks me up.” Having the gallery focused on the show business stars has its upside. “The spotlight is as much or more on the celebrities and amateurs as it is on the pros those first few days,” Leonard said. “To be quite honest, that’s kind of nice.” last_img read more

Daughter of late great GAA legend asks Donegal fans to back book to No1

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first_imgTHE daughter of late great GAA legend Tony Keady has issued a personal plea to supporters of the game in Donegal to back her Dad to No1 in the book charts.Galway hurling legend Tony passed away last August aged just 53.Now Shannon Keady has penned a personal letter to every club in Donegal asking fans to get a book about his life – One Hundred and Ten Per Cent Legend – to the top of the book charts. Here’s Shannon’s letter in full:My name is Shannon Keady, and I am writing to ask you a big favour.My Dad is Tony Keady, and he passed away suddenly at the end of last summer. But myself and my Mam, and my three brothers, have published a book telling his story. It is written by Liam Hayes, the former Meath footballer and journalist.The book is called ‘One Hundred and Ten Per Cent Legend’ because my Dad would always tell us to give 110% any time myself and my three brothers were playing camogie or hurling, or if we were doing our exams in school.My Dad’s book was published last month and it is now in bookshops all over the country. We are so proud of it. It means the world to us. My Mam and I were on the Late Late Show a few weeks ago talking about it and she said that the book kept us all going through our first winter without my Dad. That is true. It did.Now as a family, we want to give 110% for my Dad’s book. He would have wanted it to be the No.1 book in the country, and we want to make it the No.1 book in the country.At the moment it is No.1 in Galway, and in the Top 20 in Ireland. Can you help me and my brothers make it No.1?I am asking everyone in the GAA for their help.Father’s Day is on June 17, and we think it would be a great present for every father in the GAA.It would be the best thing ever if ‘One Hundred and Ten Per Cent Legend’ was No.1 before my Dad’s first anniversary in August.Thank you for reading this, and I hope you can help.Yours Sincerely,Shannon Keady.  Daughter of late great GAA legend asks Donegal fans to back book to No1 was last modified: May 31st, 2018 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:bookdonegalGAATony Keadylast_img read more

Lukaku wants Man United move, Chelsea set for £70m double swoop – GOSSIP

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first_imgtalkSPORT bring you a handy round-up all the top headlines and transfer-related stories in Monday’s newspapers…Chelsea could miss out on re-signing Romelu Lukaku in the summer. The Everton striker is reportedly put off by Antonio Conte’s style of play and could consider a move to Manchester United instead. (The Sun)Blues boss Conte could be ready to splash the cash on Belgium midfielder Radja Nainggolan and Germany defender Antonio Rudiger, both from Roma, for a total of £70million when the transfer window opens. (The Sun)However, there are claims Conte will not be at Stamford Bridge next season, as the Italian is reportedly being lined up to become Barcelona’s new manager, with the LaLiga club still yet to announce a replacement for Luis Enrique. (Daily Express)Liverpool, Manchester United, Arsenal, Manchester City, Everton and West Ham are all currently monitoring Sunderland’s 23-year-old goalkeeper Jordan Pickford, who could be allowed to leave the Black Cats for £25million following their relegation from the Premier League. (Daily Telegraph)Tottenham could face a mutiny from their players this summer after the club announced a post-season friendly in Hong Kong. A number of Spurs stars are reportedly unhappy about plans to play a game in Asia when the season ends, with the club keen to boost their international profile. (The Guardian)Arsenal striker Lucas Perez is keen on a return to Spain, with Deportivo La Coruna his first choice. (Daily Mail)Leeds United left-back Charlie Taylor refused to play in his side’s game at Wigan as he seeks a move away from Elland Road, with West Brom interested. (Birmingham Mail)Harry Redknapp is open to staying on as Birmingham City manager after delivering Championship safety at St Andrew’s. (Various)last_img read more

Watch for Flying Giraffes (and Convergent Evolutionists)

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first_imgImagine giraffe-sized animals that could fly.  They lived.  National Geographic News has an illustration of an extinct pterosaur, tall as a giraffe, that was able to leap into the air and flap its wings for sustained powered flight.    Live Science discussed work by Michael Habib [Johns Hopkins U School of Medicine] on the flying ability of Quetzalcoatlus, the largest of the pterosaurs with a wingspan of 35 feet.  There’s no way, he figured, it could get off the ground with a two-legged take-off.  “The researcher says his new study reveals the first line of evidence that pterosaurs launched into the air using four limbs: two were ultra-strong wings which, when folded and balanced on a knuckle, served as front ‘legs’ that helped the creature to walk and leap sky-high.”  If so, the animal could leap into the air in less than a second and start flapping its wings.    Scientists used to think these large animals could have only soared by leaping from cliffs into thermals.  That opinion is still around (PhysOrg 10/01/2008), but this new article says they “likely were capable of powered flight.”  Science Daily added, “Assumption and convention – rather than reason or data – held sway for centuries, ever since the classical bipedal model of pterosaur take-off was first championed, he [Habib] notes.”  [Note: the first pterosaur fossil was discovered in 1784].    Pterosaurs came in a huge range of sizes.  The smallest known is Nemicolopterus, the size of a small bird, with a wingspan of just 10 inches.  Quetzalcoatlus stood as tall as a giraffe and had a wingspan of 35 to 40 feet.  If the illustration is correct, a grown man could walk underneath one without bending over while carrying a Nemicolopterus in the palm of his hand.    Habib feels the giant pterosaur would have had to be very strong to launch its 500-pound bulk into the air.  It wasn’t just a “hang-glider with teeth,” he told National Geographic News; instead, it was built like Arnold Schwarzenegger.  “The finding is also consistent with the idea that bigger animals require more overall brawn to power their movement, Habib added.”  Using a car engine analogy, it could have had a V8.    Even though Habib works in the Center for Functional Anatomy and Evolution at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, he had nothing to say about evolution in any of the articles cited.  Other websites talk about how pterosaurs, birds, bats and insects evolved flight by “convergent evolution.”  Maybe “Assumption and convention – rather than reason or data” is still holding sway ever since the classical evolutionary model was first championed.Can you imagine the awesomeness of watching one of these creatures take off?  The rush of wind might have knocked you flat.  What sounds did they make as they sprang up into the air?  This world has seen some marvelous creatures.  Today’s biosphere, diverse and wondrous as it is, is impoverished of many animals that once roamed the land and decorated the skies.    Did pterosaurs evolve?  A quick check shows that they were an extraordinarily diverse group with no trace of transitional forms emerging from non-flying animals.  Wikipedia is not recommended as a source, because many subjects it covers are heavily biased.  But since it usually takes a strong pro-Darwin, anti-ID stance, we can use it as a hostile witness.  Behold the best they can do to combat creationism: “Because pterosaur anatomy has been so heavily modified for flight, and immediate ‘missing link’ predecessors have not so far been described,” the page says, “the ancestry of pterosaurs is not well understood.”  Ha!  A few suggestions are put forth, followed by a note from the editor: “Please help improve this section by expanding it.”  Good luck.  Go forth and find the transitional forms Darwin needs.    The evolutionists use another of their favorite tricks: inventing a term to cover the nakedness of ignorance.  The Wikipedia article invokes “convergent evolution” to explain the presence of hair on some pterosaurs which, they say, was not homologous to mammalian hair (which had not evolved yet).  A UC Berkeley page concurs with this dodge: “The appearance of flight in pterosaurs was separate from the evolution of flight in birds and bats; pterosaurs are not closely related to either birds or bats, and thus provide a classic example of convergent evolution.”  A better phrase would be “congruent miracles.”  Notice this fantasy: “Their ability to fly probably allowed them to evolve into many niches, taking advantage of many different food sources, which would explain the range of skull morphology seen.”  This is the “necessity is the mother of invention” theory of evolution.  That’s all the page by academics has to say about the origin of these large, diverse, complex animals that could fly.  For fun, read the UC Berkeley museum exhibit pages on the origin of flight.  Look for any instances in which they do not assume evolution to prove evolution.  For example, from Vertebrate Flight, “The evolution of flight, (a.k.a.) how to wing it,” the explanation is incestuous with evolutionary assumptions, i.e., “it evolved because it evolved” (see 05/25/2005 commentary).  Would the following cause a Darwin doubter to do anything but snicker?In summation, to understand the evolution of a flying lineage, we must follow these steps in this order: (1) Understand the phylogeny of that group; what its origins were.  (2) Understand the functional morphology relevant to flight, and how that changed from the nonflying ancestor to the earliest flyer.  (3) Accumulate empirical evidence explaining how flight evolved, using such tools as aerodynamic analyses, ichnology (the study of fossilized tracks), and paleoenvironmental assessments.  And finally (4) formulate an evolutionary hypothesis proposing why flight evolved in that lineage, supported by and consistent with all of the evidence from the previous three steps.Clearly, “empirical evidence” is just a prop for the obligatory Darwinian story.  No wonder they titled the next page “The origins of flight (a.k.a. two wings and a prayer).”  They even told a whopping big lie on page 3: “You might be surprised, but the evolution of flight is, for the most part, well documented with transitional forms.”  Indeed, we were very surprised to learn this.  So we looked.  The page on pterosaur flight mentioned none, and the page on bat flight contained none.  Imagination and “convergent evolution” served as stand-ins for transitional forms.  Get this: “Phylogenetic [evolutionary] and functional data [data?] suggest the inference that the hypothetical ancestor would have been nocturnal, insectivorous, arboreal, and a glider.”  This is rich.  This is evolutionary science at work goofing off.    The bird page makes the only reference to the promised transitional forms, and here they have Archaeopteryx and two other birds that could already fly.  So much for the origin of flight – the topic that was supposed to be explained.  Should these ignorant hucksters be allowed to teach such nonsense in our schools?  You’ve heard of tax evasion.  This is facts evasion.    To clear your head, go read Brett Miller’s lively and informative cartoon-decorated page, The Convergence Concoction.  It exposes the extent of the deception behind the evolutionary miracle-phrase, convergent evolution – “When the impossible happens over and over and again and again.”(Visited 8 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

A Different kind of charity

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first_imgMathiba MolefeThe mothers from Tales of Learning are just one group that have benefitted from generous donations made through the Different Donations initiative. (Image:, via Facebook)In a bid to help maximise the impact of non-government organisations (NGO) across the country, life insurance firm Different Life has started a crowd-funding initiative called to help fund NGO running costs and help these organisations continue their great work.The insurance group covers all running costs for the initiative so all funds donated to by generous individuals and businesses make their way to your chosen organisations.Donors are given the option of choosing which of the many listed organisations working in partnership with will receive their donations.The company allows its policy holders to donate through their monthly instalments. This Different Donation option allows your generosity to continue beyond one simple act of kindness. This is the source of the largest portion of donations collected by Different Life.The organisation reportedly donates the policy-holder’s first monthly payment to a charity of their choice, after which the yearly anniversary payments are also donated to the selected charity throughout the period in which the customer holds a policy with Different Life.According to the organisation’s website, more than R4 million has been donated to organisations on the roster. As more clients sign up, the number and variety of charities will grow.Organisations like The Diepsloot Foundation, Joint Aid Management, the Wildlands Conservation Trust and Fix Forward have benefited greatly from the Different Donation option and through direct donations to from people who don’t hold policies with Different Life.Watch The Different Donation:GET INVOLVEDLike many of the generous donors who have helped reach some of the funding targets they had set out, you too can play a part in helping improve someone’s life for the better.If you would like to make a donation to one of the many organisations working in partnership with, you can have a look at their projects page and choose a cause close to your heart from the list provided.The projects page also allows you to track the progress being made in meeting the targets of each project, allowing you to make the right choice.PLAY YOUR PARTEveryone can make a positive difference in their own way. How are you working to support the development of those less fortunate?Are you playing your part to help improve the lives of those around you through your everyday actions? Do you know of anyone who has gone out of their way to help improve South Africa and its people?If so, submit your story or video to our website and let us know what you are doing to improve the country for all.last_img read more

WEF Davos 2014: Keeping up with a fast-changing world

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first_imgA view of the Swiss village of Davos, which every year hosts global leaders at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum. This year’s event will run from 22 to 25 January 2014.(Image: Andy Mettler, World Economic Forum)MEDIA CONTACTS• Di DaiAssociate Media ManagerWorld Economic Forum+41 (0)22 869• Rim El HabibiAssociate Media ManagerWorld Economic ForumTel.: +41 (0)22 869 3639Rim.Elhabibi@weforum.orgRELATED ARTICLES• Watch: Davos 2014 pre-meeting press conference• Barrier breakers build new world • South Africa’s black middle class on the rise • Watch: The South African Competitiveness Forum• Infrastructure to lift South Africa’s growth speed limitMore than 2 500 business leaders and politicians are expected soon in Davos, Switzerland, to discuss the challenges faced by the global economy during the annual meeting held by the World Economic Forum (WEF).The 44th annual general meeting, which takes place from January 22 to 25, will address the challenges facing the world in 2014 under the theme, “The Reshaping of the World – Consequences for Society, Politics and Business”. The aim of WEF 2014 is “to create a completely new context for insightful, future-oriented decision-making”, the forum says.Who will be therePresidents and prime ministers from around the world attend the annual meeting, with heads of state from the G20 countries, including Australia, Japan, Italy, the UK, Mexico, Brazil and South Korea, invited to address this year’s gathering.Nearly 40 African leaders, among them nine heads of government, will attend, including the presidents of Tanzania, Rwanda, Nigeria, Ghana and Liberia. Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan and Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies will lead the high-level South African delegation this year.Participants include more than 1 500 business leaders from the forum’s 1 000 member companies. Representatives from international organisations, civil society and spiritual leaders, academia and the media, as well as cultural leaders will also be there.What’s on the agenda?“Profound political, economic, social and, above all, technological forces” are transforming our lives, communities and institutions, WEF says, with power shifting from traditional hierarchies to “networked heterarchies”, a flatter, more inclusive form of self-organisation. But by remaining focused on crisis rather than trends and opportunities, the international community is failing to take advantage of this.WEF is hoping to change that through discussion in Davos: “Our aim is to develop the insights, initiatives and actions necessary to respond to current and emerging challenges,” the forum says.Watch the WEF Global Risks Report:The official programme will focus on:Disruptive innovation: Turning the disruption of scientific breakthroughs and technological forces into long-term opportunities.Inclusive growth: Models, sectors and industries that will generate resilient and equitable growth.Society’s new expectations: Given the widespread erosion of confidence in business and government leaders, what steps will make business and government more accountable and strengthen civic participation?A world of 9 billion: With increasing pressure on resources and the environment, how can economies embark on a more sustainable path to development?There are almost 250 sessions on the programme, with WEF planning to stream many of them via its website and tweet many others (hashtags #WEF and #Davos). Team South Africa will be tweeting its side of the conversation using #WEF14SA.See the Open Forum programmeWatch the sessions on demandFollow WEF on Twitter: @davosAfrica at DavosThere would be no formal sessions devoted to Africa this year, Elsie Kanza, WEF director: head of Africa, told Voice of America (VoA). Instead, African issues would be integrated into other global topics that were to be addressed.“Something that is important from the African community, and which we paid heed to this year, is that they were tired of being boxed into an Africa corner,” she told VoA. “They said Africa is very much part of the world and Davos is really a platform that is global, and that therefore what you have is African voices on global issues.”Kanza said African leaders did not want their issues to be treated as isolated cases. The Davos focus should be more on Africa’s place in the world, rather than on the continent or region of origin.South Africa at DavosReshaping the world is not news to us, Brand South Africa, the country’s official marketing agency, says. “We have always been reshaping our policy and nation based on challenges, opportunities and our vision for South Africa as a competitive nation and global example.”It will lead a high-powered delegation to Davos to network with government, business and civil society leaders as it seeks to position South Africa as a competitive, developed economy that offers good returns on investment. “We know so much still needs to be done, yet we are confident the vision of an economically prosperous Africa is within reach,” President Jacob Zuma told WEF last year.The South African delegation will aim to show that the country has achieved a great deal in reshaping the nation over the past 20 years. South Africa is a very competitive nation on the continent and the globe, “but we are always striving for better and more, which is why we have the Vision 2030, which defines the future of who we as a nation want to be”, Brand South Africa says.South Africa’s strengthsAlthough South Africa has declined in rankings on some of the performance pillars in the WEF Global Competitiveness Report, improvement has been noted in other critical areas, such as financial market development among the Brics nations, robustness of institutions, innovation, business sophistication, and goods and market efficiency.“Being a forward-looking country, the areas in decline are being addressed through various initiatives and also through deliberate focus and actions around the blueprint for economic development and social cohesion – the NDP [National Development Plan]; South Africa’s Vision 2030,” Brand South Africa says.Investment destinationSince its transition to democracy, South Africa has certainly made strides, with an economy steadily on the rise and a detailed, actionable plan for the future. “With Africa claiming its stake as a viable investment destination, South Africa continues to present investment opportunities to the world at large through its resilient industries and sound legal and regulatory frameworks,” Brand South Africa says. “There is no doubt that South Africa is an investment destination that is brimming with investment opportunities.”Five key areas help position the country as a compelling and sound investment destination:South Africa’s clear vision for the country for 2030South Africa’s competitivenessThe strength of the South African economy and its relationship with other Brics nationsThe strides made on the innovation frontSouth Africa’s role in the integration of AfricaSouth African events at Davos 2014Brand South Africa will host a business breakfast in Davos on Wednesday, 22 January. The discussion will focus on South Africa’s achievements over the past 20 years of democracy, as well as the country’s vision for the future as outlined in the National Development Plan.Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan will deliver the key address, while panelists will include Goldman Sachs managing director Colin Coleman, Business Unity South Africa president Jabu Mabuza and First Rand chief executive Sizwe Nxasana.A “Night with South Africa” will be hosted by Brand South Africa on Wednesday, 22 January at the Kirchner Museum. Over a cocktail or a glass of South African wine, “Team South Africa” – including deputy chair Happy Ntshingila and chief executive Miller Motala – will share what the country has to offer as a business destination.Minister in the Presidency Trevor Manuel will deliver a keynote address, while Dr Klaus Schwab, the forum’s founder and executive chairman, has been invited to deliver a WEF message on the legacy of Nelson Mandela, who died in December last year.A framed image of Madiba’s handprint will be handed over to Schwab at the event.last_img read more

Weatherization’s Political Fallout

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first_imgNothing to like for someIn fact, the WAP – which was launched in 1976 to increase the energy efficiency of homes of low-income families, and had attracted scant attention before it got juiced by the Recovery Act – has been in the crosshairs of small-government advocates ever since its funding boost in 2009. Terms such as “boondoggle,” “fiasco,” and “money pit” are applied freely.It is still too early to tell how much of this political spaghetti will stick to the wall. One goal of the expanded program was to weatherize 600,000 homes; some 484,000 have been retrofitted so far, according to the Department of Energy, which oversees the state programs that administer the WAP. The expanded program is designed to release funds in two installments, with release of the second allotment contingent on proper and complete spending of the first. The DOE deadline for completion of that first phase is March 31, 2012. There is still plenty of time for things to go right or go wrong, but the odds seem to favor more of the former than the latter – and continued targeting by critics of the stimulus. RELATED ARTICLES California Increases Funding For Low-Income Weatherization U.S. House Proposes Huge Increase In Weatherization SpendingGet a Green Grip on Stimulus CashBeyond Weatherization: More Stimulus Money Coming Sorting the Nuts and Bolts of a State’s Weatherization Program Some States Customize Weatherization Plans, but Will DOE Approve?Weatherization Funding’s Hot State/Cold State BalanceMinnesota Gears Up for Weatherization Onslaught As Weatherization, SEP Funds Roll Out, Spending and Scrutiny BeginIn Some Areas, Weatherization Struggles Out of the GateFor Indiana, Weatherization Funds Are Still on HoldNevada Wrestles with Its Weatherization Plan When Spending Weatherization Money Is Harder Than Getting It Transforming Stimulus-Funded Weatherization into a National Industry Weatherization Training Center Doubles in Size, Triples in Training Capacity Still a Slow Dance for Weatherization Funding in Some StatesWeatherization in Texas Inches Along CautiouslyInspections: Crucial Links in the Weatherization ChainGauging the Stimulus Effect in Georgia, MinnesotaRattling California’s Weatherization CageOnce Again, Weatherization Cited as a Stimulus Laggard Stimulus-Funded Weatherization Begins to Find Its FootingDOE Targets Innovation in Its Weatherization Program Pondering the Evolution of Weatherization and Retrofit Snapshots from Tennessee DOE Announces Home Efficiency Scoring System and Weatherization GuidelinesIn New Jersey, Weatherization’s Bureaucratic MeltdownCalifornia’s Ongoing Weatherization OdysseyLawmaker Targets DOE’s Weatherization ProgramWeatherization’s Home-Stretch Recovery A recent New York Times story on the sometimes inconsistent results of the stimulus-enhanced Weatherization Assistance Program describes some of the issues that have made it a political target. After funding for the program was substantially increased in early 2009, there was confusion about wage requirements.In some states, hiring freezes prevented local agencies from quickly beefing up training, administrative and fieldwork teams. Inadequate training in some areas led to poor quality work. And large funding commitments to some states were slow to yield anything but paltry results.So even though the rollout of the “new” WAP, whose $5 billion in funding under the $787 billion American Recovery and Reinvestment Act cast a tall shadow over the $300 million to $400 million usual annual allotment, has been successfully deployed in many states, the program’s past, existing, and potential weaknesses have gotten the full light of day. That, naturally, has made weatherization a political target, particularly for those eager to portray the stimulus program as a failure and claim the high ground as deficit hawks.last_img read more