Interest of democracy

first_imgIt came as no surprise to many that after an extremely long wait, the President has indicated to the Leader of the Opposition and the nation as a whole, that he is not in favour of the second list of nominees submitted for his consideration for the position of Chairman of the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM).In his rejection letter to the Leader of the Opposition last Friday, the President was quoted in the media as saying that after examining the Curriculum Vitae of the six nominees submitted, he has found the list to be unacceptable within the meaning of the Constitution and the criteria he had previously outlined. It should be noted that the President had rejected the initial list on the grounds that the identified persons were not ‘fit and proper’ in keeping with the provisions of the Constitution of Guyana.This latest move by the President is quite unfortunate as there have been quite a lot of effort on the part of the Opposition Leader to arrive at a list that is in keeping with the constitutional requirements. Over the past few weeks, the Opposition Leader had embarked on an elaborate consultative process which lasted several weeks, during which he solicited the views of, and sought nominations from, many nationally renowned persons and various important stakeholders’ and representative organisations.It is clear that the President has managed to make what was historically a very smooth and straightforward exercise one that is now complicated and politically acrimonious. Considering the fact that there is urgent need for a chairman to be appointed to proceed with the important business of the Elections Commission, one is forced to ask the real reason behind the President’s rejection of the second list. Some have expressed the view that the President was setting the stage for a unilateral decision to be made on the appointment of a chairman, since there were suspicions that he (the President) already had someone in mind that he favours to function in that capacity.While it is still not clear what next steps the Opposition Leader will take, we believe that finding another six names that are in compliance with the President’s criteria would now become near impossible since the pool to draw from has become significantly narrower. More importantly, as indicated by the Opposition, persons would become even more reluctant to offer their names, for fear of the public damage and humiliation to their professional reputation, character and image by the President’s cavalier rejection of their names.We had stated before that while he (the President) may have good intentions, there are many problems with his criteria and his legal team’s interpretation of the Constitution; and while we do not intend to delve into detail on them here, as they have already been ventilated in the media, we believe the focus of the Constitution regarding such an appointment was the integrity and the independence of the post holder.We have seen the complications that have arisen from what in the normal course should have been a simple and straightforward process. Since there seems to be a problem with the interpretation of the Constitution, perhaps the time has come for the relevant stakeholders to seriously consider reviewing that aspect of the Constitution (the process and criteria of the GECOM Chairman’s appointment) with the aim of clearing up all the grey areas. Once the criteria for such a post are clearly spelt out, there would be little room for misinterpretation and political acrimony.GECOM has been without a chairman since February 28, 2017, when Dr Steve Surujbally stepped down. From all indications, the work of the Commission is being stymied due to the absence of a GECOM Chair. It would, therefore, be in the nation’s interest if the President and Opposition Leader come to an immediate compromise on this issue.Once the appointment is made, it will allow for the political situation in the country to settle itself; if not, it could be exacerbated. Also, the sooner the issue is sorted out, the better it would be for the new chairman to familiarise himself/herself with the entire electoral process and the running of the organisation (GECOM), which we know is very huge and complex. In the long run, it is in the interest of democracy, it is not about partisan political interest.last_img read more

Man charged for stealing wife’s property

first_imgA man who allegedly stole some of his wife’s property after their relationship ended, was made to answer to Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan when he appeared at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts.Sherwin Johnson, 34, of Lot 1 Wales Street, Bagotstown, East Bank Demerara, pleaded not guilty to the charge when it was read to him.It is alleged that on October 1, 2016, at Bagotstown, he stole from Candacy Lanford one laptop and one Samsung Galaxy cell phone to a total value of 5,000.According to the Prosecution’s facts, the defendant and Lanford who share three children together, are no longer in a relationship but when he left the home he took the above mentioned items with him.After he was summoned by a Police Officer, he returned with the items.He was granted ,000 bail and is scheduled to return to court on November 18, 2016.last_img read more

Chetwynd resident describes “chaotic” streets after Boston Marathon bombing

first_img“We heard an explosion, and seen, of course, a cloud of smoke, white smoke, and to me my thoughts were… the last thing I would think of is a bomb,” she told Peace FM yesterday. “Unfortunately for some people that was the first thing they thought of.”She says the area was cleared quickly, and as she and her friend made their way back to their nearby hotel, they began to learn more about what had actually happened.“Everybody has their cell phones and everybody’s calling back and forth. You start hearing the impact of it and the impact on some of the people that it hadn’t missed,” she says, “It was numbing, it was just numbing.”- Advertisement -Her husband Curtis was about a kilometre from the finish line when the bombs went off, and as people started to congregate, she was lent a phone to try and reach him.“I was very concerned that he was at the finish, but of course the cell service was shut down, nobody was getting through,” she says. “We’re getting pushed from street to street, [the police] keep yelling at us to ‘clear the street, clear the street’, which, understandably yes because there were suspicious packages all over. It was chaotic.”Advertisement Luckily she and Curtis were able to meet up at a previously designated corner some time later.Brewster says the downtown area now has a high army and police presence, and security has been heightened, adding she has to show her ID to get to her hotel. Despite the tragedy, she applauds the spirit of the city, calling it an “amazing place” from the moment she arrived. She and her husband remain in Boston until Friday.So far there have been no arrests made yet in the bombings that left three people dead and injured near 150 others.last_img read more

Fort St. John Mounties cracking down on illegally modified vehicles

first_imgWhile rock chips and impacts are a fact of life during winter in Northern B.C., police say that windshields obstructed by damage is number five on their crackdown list. A crack over 300 millimetres long in any part, more than two cracks over 150 millimetres long, a stone injury over 40 millimetres in diameter or any clouding on the driver’s side of the windshield could mean paying a $109 fine.Finally, licence plates make number six on the list, with the RCMP noting that it shouldn’t be difficult to find a car’s plates. Cars and trucks in B.C. are required to have two licence plates secured to the vehicle – one on the front and one on the rear – and those plates must be entirely unobstructed and free from dirt so the letters and numbers can be plainly seen and read. Vehicles without a front and/or rear licence plate will see a $109 fine for the driver, while an illegible licence plate will cost the driver $230. FORT ST. JOHN, B.C. — The Fort St. John RCMP are going to focusing enforcement of defective vehicles over the next few months.In a release this morning, Sgt. Dave Tyreman said that the RCMP will be targeting six commonly-observed modifications on vehicles in the Fort St. John area.The first modification is illegal suspension and lift kits, which the Tyreman said is a common modification seen by officers, and involves the illegal raising or lowering of the vehicle’s suspension height. A car’s height changed by more than 10 centimetres cannot be driven or parked on a highway in B.C. until it has been inspected by a certified inspector to ensure the modification meets safety standards. Tyreman explained that illegal height modifications could mean a fine of $598.- Advertisement -In the same vein as ride height modifications, police will be enforcing faults with vehicle headlamps and headlamp heights, specifically focusing on vehicles with High Intensity Discharge lights. RCMP advises those considering those lights to check out the Commercial Vehicle Safety Enforcement website to make sure they comply with the Motor Vehicle Act. Drivers with improper light locations, inadequate headlights or headlights blocked by dirt or other materials could face a $109 fine.Vehicles with insufficient or no mud flaps is the third area of vehicle defects that police will focus on. That fine can also cost a driver $109.Among other issues, Tyreman said that officers still encounter vehicles with illegally tinted windows, making it number four on the list. Tyreman explained that anything that reduces the amount of light a window lets through cannot be installed more than 75 millimetres below the top of the windshield, or on a side window that isn’t behind the driver. The fine for illegally tinted windows is also $109.Advertisementlast_img read more

Judge hears auto emissions case

first_imgFRESNO – California should be permitted to enact the world’s toughest vehicle-emission standards as part of its effort to combat global warming, a state attorney told a federal judge Friday. “Congress wanted California to be an innovator,” California Deputy Attorney General Mark Melnick argued in U.S. District Court in defense of regulations seeking to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles. At issue are tailpipe emission standards for greenhouse gases approved in 2004 by the California Air Resources Board. The rules are designed to cut polluting exhaust from cars and light trucks by 25 percent and from sport utility vehicles by 18 percent. A coalition of automakers is challenging the rules as a de-facto mandate on fuel-economy standards, which can be set only by the federal government. The state Attorney General’s Office has urged U.S. District Judge Anthony Ishii to rule immediately, while automakers want to proceed to a trial that is scheduled to start Jan. 30. California’s attempt to limit tailpipe emissions is a key component of a broader state effort to reduce its emissions of gases that contribute to global warming. The state wants to cut the amount of such gases to 1990 levels by 2020.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe Christmas Truce of 1914 proved that peace is possible“The so-called carbon dioxide, greenhouse gas emissions standards, or whatever label California puts on its standards, are in fact fuel-economy standards,” said Andrew Clubok, an attorney representing the lawsuit’s main plaintiff, Central Valley Chrysler-Jeep Inc. “The only way to reduce carbon dioxide is to increase fuel economy.” Some European countries and Japan already have higher fuel-efficiency standards than the U.S. But automakers say those stricter benchmarks can be met because drivers in those countries have smaller cars with manual transmissions, both of which use less gas. They said the technology does not yet exist or cannot be applied practically to the larger vehicles generally used in the U.S. In addition, Clubok argued that the California regulation would “massively” increase the cost of vehicles, eliminate some types of trucks used by farmers, lead to more highway fatalities and cause more air pollution. He said drivers of fuel-efficient cars often drive more, spewing other nonregulated pollutants into the air. A decision in the case could have national implications. Ten other states have adopted the stricter California standard, which caps greenhouse gas emissions from vehicles beginning in 2009. last_img read more

Sustainability – Overdue update on Energy Use in the Office

first_imgWe should start collecting baseline data in about two-three weeks with the PoC formally lunching about 30 days thereafter.  I’ll be back soon with status updates.  -Mike Breton IT Technology Evangelist It’s been a few months since I last blogged on Energy Use in the Office.  If you remember from pervious blogs, we did a small proof of concept last summer studying different energy saving techniques in the office environment and found that just providing individuals with Awareness of their usage and some simple tips and tricks to reduce was the most effective.  We’ve been planning a follow-on PoC, on much larger scale, for some time now and I’m very excited to tell you that it is finally about to start. In case this is new to you, here’s a few links to pervious postings to bring you up to date:center_img In the meantime, here’s my question for you: Has your company done anything like this?  If so, what was that experience like?  If not, how do you feel about energy / PC usage data being collected (assuming only you have access to your individual information)? Metering the Office EnvironmentAwareness of Energy Use in the OfficeUpdate on Energy use in the Office Proof of ConceptEnergy Use in the Office Proof of Concept ResultsReducing Energy Use in Offices to Increase IT Sustainability (White Paper)The new PoC will focus on Awareness only and will use a third party tool to “soft meter” individual’s PCs.  They’ll have access to their own individual information via a secure web portal as well as be able to compare their usage to others on their floor as well as the entire PoC population at large.  We’re also installing two larger kiosk type displays in a lobby and café where group and building level rollup usage information can been seen as well.  Maybe there’ll be some friendly competition between floors to see who can reduce the most.last_img read more

Mary Kom ready for her sixth World Championships gold

first_imgAdvertisement Indian Open Boxing Tournament 2019: Even Mary Kom’s Nepalese opponent was humble in her loss AdvertisementFive World Championships. An Olympic bronze medal. An Asian Games and Commonwealth Games gold. A mother-of-three children. A commercially successful biopic. AIBA Legends Award.If you are human, you would stop there. But, if your name is Chungneijang Mary Kom Mangte, you do not. Tomorrow, Mary Kom will eye for her sixth World Championships gold. And, between her and destiny stands Ukraine’s Hanna Okhota.Can Mary Kom equal Cuban legend Felix Savon’s record of winning six World Championships?Mary and Hanna’s paths to the light flyweight finals have been more or less similar. Mary Kom received a bye in her first round and overcame Kazakhstan’s Aigerim Kassenayeva, China’s Wu Yu, and North Korea’s Kim Hyang-Mi in the subsequent rounds by a 5-0 scoreline. Hanna, too, won all her rounds with a 5-0 scoreline but fought an extra bout.The 22-year-old collided with the boxing legend at the semi-finals of the Silesian Open in Poland in September this year. Mary Kom triumphed 5-0 then, and with the home support this time, it will only make the task tougher for her opponent.The historic match will begin after 4 pm IST, and the fans can catch the action live on Star Sports Select 1, Star Sports Select 1 HD, and Hotstar. Later in the day, debutant Sonia Chahal will take on Germany’s Ornella Wahner in the finals of the featherweight category.The Sportsindiashow team wishes both the pugilists all the best for their bouts tomorrow.last_img read more

Sports Wrap: PV Sindhu conquers China, wedding bells to ring again for Imran Khan and more

first_imgFive takeaways from PV Sindhu’s China Open victoryIndian badminton queen PV Sindhu tamed the dragon in its own den as she won the China Open Super Series title. Here are five reasons why the win is significant for her and Indian badminton.Ronaldo hat-trick fires Real Madrid to derby victory over AtleticoReal Madrid’s gap to Atletico Madrid increased to nine points, putting the rival’s title chances in jeopardy after only 12 matches.Jordan Spieth wins Australian Open in playoffJordan Spieth drained a 12-foot birdie putt to win the Australian Open for the second time after a three-way sudden death playoff.Australia wield the axe for third South Africa TestJoe Burns, Adam Voges and Callum Ferguson, as well as wicketkeeper Peter Nevill, paid the price for a string of batting collapses, while seamer Joe Mennie was also axed after the innings defeat in the second Test in Hobart.Imran Khan hints at third marriageFormer Pakistan captain Imran Khan said he does not have a very good track record when it comes to marriage.last_img read more

Aston Villa’s Steve Bruce seeks solace on pitch after torrid few months

first_imgShare on Messenger Share on Facebook When Steve Bruce is asked whether work on strengthening the team will start immediately if Aston Villa win promotion to the Premier League on Saturday, the first thought that comes into his head has nothing to do with new signings. “The one thing I need this year, more than any other year, is a holiday,” he says.The Championship can be a grind at the best of times with all those Saturday-Tuesday fixtures and all the more so when a 46-game season is extended by another three weeks because of the play-offs, but Bruce is looking forward to a break for reasons that transcend football. This has been a devastating year for the Villa manager, who lost his father, Joe, in February and his mother, Sheenagh, less than three months later. The pain and grief are never far from the surface but Bruce, somehow, has managed to carry on working, trying as best he can to lose himself in the job while also taking solace from the heart-warming response he has received from inside football.“You know something?” he says. “In the industry we’re in, there is so much negativity and so-called bad people around everywhere, and when something happens like what’s happened to me, with how cruel it is, then the number of messages of support and cards I’ve had has been quite remarkable. The football world then feels for you because to lose your mum and dad in a matter of 12 weeks has been the most traumatic experience that anybody could cope with.”Bruce pauses for a moment, puffs out his cheeks and carries on. “On a lighter note, my mum always enjoyed Wembley, so she would have been getting her outfit,” he adds, smiling. “She loved Wembley. My dad wouldn’t have gone. He’d have said: ‘I can’t stand all that crap, Steve. I don’t know how you do all that and stand there, I couldn’t do that for the life of me.’ But my mum was a total one-off and my biggest supporter, and she was terrific.”It is extremely moving listening to Bruce and not surprising to hear him say that, in the context of what he has been through over the last few months, winning promotion with Villa would be the most satisfying achievement of his managerial career.In truth, it has been a difficult assignment at Villa from day one. Appointed in October 2016, when Villa were 19th in the Championship, Bruce remembers sitting down with Steve Round, the technical director, after his first game and having a brutally honest conversation about the state of the club. “My initial thought, and Steve agreed with me, was: ‘Steve, we’ve got to stop the rot here and just keep the club in the Championship.’ That’s how low I thought it had got.”Years of failure had taken their toll. “There was no association with the players [and the fans] any more, it had broken,” Bruce says. “So to try and mend that, the only thing you can do is try and get a bit of honesty and endeavour back and win a few matches. I do believe the supporters have enjoyed seeing what we have got at the moment. It has taken some time and certainly wasn’t there when I arrived. There were times when they wanted to rip my head off and rip the heads off the players.”Bruce recruited experienced campaigners to turn things around, including Glenn Whelan, Ahmed Elmohamady, John Terry and Mile Jedinak, all of whom “could handle playing for Aston Villa”, and also made the most of the loan market by adding Robert Snodgrass, Josh Onomah, Sam Johnstone and Lewis Grabban.Yet the player he “practically tried to build a team around” was already at the club. Jack Grealish, who burst on to the scene in an FA Cup semi-final against Liverpool three years ago, has been outstanding in the second half of the season, so much so that Bruce thought the 22-year-old had an outside chance of making England’s World Cup squad. “He’s got that ability to get you off your seat and go ‘wow’, which is quite unique in this country,” Bruce says.He hopes Grealish will give Villa “another year whatever league we are in”, but no one inside the club is under any illusions about the ramifications of defeat against Fulham. “There will be difficult times ahead, I would have thought,” says Bruce, alluding to concerns about the potential financial fallout.For Bruce, however, it is all about thinking positively, which has not always been easy over the last few months. The 57-year-old, who is chasing a fifth promotion to the top flight, deserves a break in more ways than one, and few outside Fulham will begrudge him if he heads off on holiday as a Premier League manager once again. Championship Share on LinkedIn features Share via Email Aston Villa Share on Pinterest Share on Twitter Steve Bruce Aston Villa survive late Stewart Downing scare to reach Wembley final Read more Share on WhatsApp Topics Reuse this contentlast_img read more