Big Boy 1 and Big Boy 2: The Invisible Twins

first_imgTransparency is a Taboo in Liberia From the balcony of the Executive Mansion to the bicameral chambers of the National Legislature, there is an increasing wave of corruption, greed, bribery, nepotism and patronage. From the courtrooms of the Supreme and Subordinate Courts to the Correction Centers, justice is on sale at the detriment of those who do not have deep pockets as well as those who are far away from the powers that be. From the offices of various ministries to public enterprises and agencies, almost everyone who claims to be ‘working for the good of the people’ is in a hurry to get rich, especially with less than 15 months to a crucial electoral process in 2017. Transparency has become a taboo in a small and under-populated country like Liberia as bribery remains a top priority for those at the helm of national leadership. Today under a canopy of democracy, accountability to the people is prohibited as public dishonesty pollutes every echelon of our society. Sometimes, I am left to wonder whether our ‘leaders’ are really sincere about fighting corruption or they are pretending to be fighting it. This menace (corruption) continues to pose severe danger to peace, stability and national unity in Liberia. From the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to Embassies and Consulates, the collective interest of the nation is mortgaged and sold cheaply in return for selfish gains. From the National Investment Commission to the National Bureau of Concessions, the natural resources of Liberia are rapidly commercialized without any plan to improve the living condition of those who own those resources. These are routine and domineering trends in Liberia’s governance structure that continue to hamper national security, economic growth and genuine development. From every indication, corruption is now presiding as Commander-In-Chief (CIC) of Africa’s oldest republic. When those in authority siphon public resources, they are not held accountable or liable simply because they have big connections and deep pockets. No one is yet to account for the US$60 million the European Union gave Liberia to improve its health sector. No one has been held accountable for the bankruptcy of the National Oil Company (NOCAL). Who has ever accounted for the US$10.5 million given by CHEVRON for social development? Nobody has ever been held liable for ratifying and approving over 66 bogus concession agreements. No one is yet to account for the US$2.6 million stolen Ebola fund. The 65 audit reports released by former Auditor General John S. Morlu are getting dusty on the shelf. The Global Witness Report is gradually dying as Liberians remain curious to know who are Big Boy 1 and Big Boy 2. The half a million (US$500,000.00) clandestinely pocketed by Big Boy 1 and Big Boy 2 could build 5 modern primary schools or 5 public libraries. This money could equip 2 high-tech computer labs at the state-run university or any private institution of higher learning for that matter. More than US$14,933,334 has been spent since 2008 just to renovate an eight-story Executive Mansion, but this project is far from completion. The Ministry of State for Presidential Affairs must give an account of this money. The over US$16.9 billion foreign direct investment since 2006 has made no real impact. Life expectancy is still low while food insecurity remains high. The pace of unemployment, poverty, infant and maternal mortality, disease and ignorance is exponential as a result of unpatriotic and bad governance. The nation is beclouded and eclipsed by a small group of ‘born-again’ rascals and political hustlers. They are ruining our State and plunging its destiny into a ditch of entrenched paralysis. These mountebanks and micro-nationalists are on an expedition to leech onto Liberia’s wealth. Leadership for them is not about service, but self-gains. They are the real originators of the ‘Get, Grab and Go’ formula. The Invisible Twins On May 11, 2016, the invisible twins that Liberians have never known and seen before were given birth to suddenly by a damning Global Witness report under the caption ‘The Deceivers’. No twins have ever been given such a name (Big Boy 1 and Big Boy 2) in our history. What is even intriguing and mindboggling is that these twins are invisible. The Liberian people know them by pseudonym (Big Boy 1 and Big Boy 2), but they are yet to see them physically after more than 2 months of public outcry. These invisible twins covertly pocketed US$500,000 out of the US$950,000 Sable Mining bribery scandal in 2010, according to Global Witness. Almost everywhere including market places, haitai centers and street corners, the Global Witness report is being discussed. The Global Witness report further justifies that corruption has been given residential permit in Liberia. There is huge public anxiety currently for government to dig out the hard facts surrounding this report. The desire of the Liberian people to know who Big Boy 1 and Big Boy 2 are remains unquenchable. Every effort to detect or unearth the Invisible Twins (Big Boy 1 and Big Boy 2) seems futile. Even the Special Presidential Task Force headed by Cllr. Fonati Koffa is yet to identify these Invisible Twins. It has been more than 2 months since Global Witness, an international anti-graft institution, released a shocking report linking top officials of the Liberian government to bribery. This report has brought national disgrace and embarrassment to our nation; thereby provoking many in and out of Liberia to call for an independent, speedy and comprehensive investigation. The Liberian people are still in doubt as to whether something will ever come out of this report and the culprits of such grave crime (bribery) will be dealt with in accordance with the law. There are many other reports of similar nature linking top officials of government to bribery, conflict of interest, corruption, and unethical behaviors. Unfortunately, nothing has come out of those reports. Bribery in government is preventing millions of Liberians from accessing quality education, improved health care, better housing, electricity, safe drinking water, good roads, job opportunities, social welfare and other basic services. This unscrupulous practice is even detrimental than a venom. Bribery is a grave crime. It is a second degree felony according to Subchapter D Section 12.50. Bribery also violates section 9.1 of the Code of Conduct and Chapter 11 Article 90(a) of the 1986 Constitution. Since this crime or offence is so injurious, then it means that Liberians must stand up to demand an impartial investigation in order to uncover hidden truths in this bribery case. Those who have been accused by Global Witness must be given an opportunity to exonerate themselves through a transparent legal process. On the other hand, Global Witness must also be accorded similar opportunity to prove its claims or allegations against those accused. We hope this other case will serve as a turning point in the fight against corruption in Liberia. Corruption must come to an end – it has to! The Liberian people have endured a lot as a result of this menace. Moving forward will not just require the establishment of anti-corruption watchdogs like the GAC, LACC and IAA, but it will require strong political will and sincerity. Those who are in the constant habit of abusing power and misusing public resources must be held liable in accordance with the Law. The Law is the only legal instrument that binds us together. Nobody is above the Law. The Law is above everybody. The proper and unbiased administration of the law is fundamental to sustaining peace and maintaining stability in the absence of UNMIL. Justice is not selective. It knows no one’s name, title, status, background, religion, or political affiliation. Justice must be dispensed without fear or favor to ensure that public safety or interest is guaranteed. The Liberian people deserve to know who Big Boy 1 and Big Boy 2 are. The government of Liberia must do all it can in the shortest possible time to unearth these Invisible Twins and ensure that the actual facts of the Global Witness report are revealed. Anything less than this, the confidence of the people in the government would diminish even further. As a means of fast-tracking this case and getting at its bottom, it is crucial for the government of Liberia to seek support or assistance from the United Nations, Transparency International, Carter Center, the US government, the British government, etc. Liberia can get better if we begin to uproot economic vampires and vultures through a concrete mechanism of accountability and justice. Impunity has no space under the doctrine of democracy. From the largest slum of West Point and the top of Ducor, I see a new Liberia rising above the African continent. Change is possible even in the midst of impossible odds. About the Author: Martin K. N. Kollie is a Liberian youth activist, a student leader, an emerging economist and a young writer. He hails from central Liberia, specifically Bong County. Martin currently reads Economics with distinction at the University of Liberia and he is a loyal stalwart of the Student Unification Party (SUP). He can be reached at: martinkerkula1989@yahoo.comShare this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Future outbreaks of gastro could be prevented – Dr Cummings

first_imgThe cause for the recent Gastroenteritis outbreak in Region Nine (Upper Takatu-Upper Essequibo) has been identified, treated and contained. Doctors, health officers and Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) operatives carried out investigations in areas of the reported outbreak and revealed that it was caused byMinister within the Public Health Ministry, Dr Karen Cummings, along with Maruranau Toshao Patrick Gomes, being briefed by a GWI representative on the state of one of the wells in Maruranaua water-borne disease contracted by residents.Additionally, cases of the outbreak in Aishalton, Shea, Maruranau and Awareranau, were also linked to water contamination, according to the investigations. Minister within the Public Health Ministry Dr Karen Cummings, who visited the Region, was informed by GWI representatives that in some areas, the code for setting up water pumps and wells was not adhered to, according to a release from the Government Information Agency (GINA).Minister Cummings said, “What we found also is that they have this surface water and the well, it’s not covered so we hope that they would cover the wells (short-term solution) and of course hygiene, wash hands. Basically, hygiene to improve in that area and of course in terms of our medical supplies, ensure that we have adequate oral rehydration salts (and other medication to treat with these cases).”Water supply wells, pumps and any pipe where water can be sourced should be erected at least 100 yards from sanitary blocks and bathroom facilities. Also it was stressed that water treatment practices should be efficiently carried out, according to the GWI.“We were able to disseminate information in terms of how we can improve water quality, improve the hygiene, we were able to look at some wells, some pumps with Mr Gomes, one of the Toshaos in one of the areas (Maruranau). We are hoping that we would be able to not have a reoccurrence in the future, we have sent in some medical supplies (and) we have given them bleach,” MinisterMinister within the Public Health Ministry, Dr Karen Cummings hands over a fogging machine to Shea Toshao John AgustusCummings added.Meanwhile, District Doctor Tenecia Marks, who is stationed in South Rupununi, said that after receiving reports of a number of gastroenteritis infected cases, an investigation was launched to determine the cause of the outbreak.“From the water samples taken from the wells within Shea, the main bacterial colony was the E. coli bacteria and we also found Entamoeba histolytica (a protozoan parasite) in the stool samples taken from patients,” Dr Marks explained. E. coli are a large and diverse group of bacteria. Although most strains of E. coli are harmless, other can cause diarrhea and vomiting.Alluding to actions taken after the outbreak was reported, she said, “We immediately came to the surrounding villages and we did an outreach where we investigated the outbreak and to verify that it was indeed an outbreak. We visited the houses we inspected their wells took water samples, did chlorine distribution we did educative chats with the residents in the community and in simple terms demonstrated and also identified some of the unhealthy practices and how they can improve and practice healthy habits.”The minister and her team also found that after these exercises were carried out, cultural practices in the hinterland remains a barrier towards ensuring that effective healthcare delivery. Since some resident refuse to adhere to health advice provided by medical personnel within the area.However, the minister concluded that the long-term solution would be to replace defective water supply pumps and for the Community Health Workers at various Health Posts to educate residents on how water must be treated before consumption and domestic use.Additionally, Minister Cummings distributed mosquito nets for pregnant mothers. A fogging machine was also handed over to the Toshao of Shea village to assist in preventing the spread of Zika and other mosquito-borne diseases in the South Rupununi.The Minister also visited the Lethem Regional Hospital and noted that, “they have an adequate supply of drugs there and we expect great things coming out of Lethem as we strive to bring it up to a Regional Hospital.”The Gastroenteritis outbreak was reported by Public Health Minister Volda Lawrence on January 10, 2017. The senior Minister indicated that the situation has been brought to the attention of the Public Health Ministry and was being monitored closelylast_img read more

DWP’s greatest rip-off

first_img“Basically (the DWP) ripped off a number of agencies,” said California Attorney General Jerry Brown. “It was a political move. This way the City Council gets more money to spend on their special projects. This takes money away from the schools, the colleges, the Highway Patrol.” Brown’s office joined the lawsuit on behalf of state agencies in Los Angeles that were overcharged $31 million by the DWP. The ruling is a significant loss for the DWP – and potentially Los Angeles ratepayers – if the utility has to dip into its savings to repay the public agencies named in the judgment. But DWP officials said they will appeal, and they disputed the judge’s ruling and assertions that the utility was bilking customers. “We are a public agency. We’re a municipal utility. We’re not a profit-making entity,” said Board of Water and Power Commission President H. David Nahai, adding that the DWP’s rates are among the lowest in the state. “The suggestion that we were somehow engaging in profiteering is offensive.” Nahai called the ruling preliminary. “Immediately, we don’t think it will have an impact,” he said. “If the courts ultimately determine that DWP has to pay these amounts, we’ll abide by the courts’ decision.” The $222 million would be a one-time payment. Last year former Assemblywoman Jackie Goldberg, D-Los Angeles, passed legislation that allows the DWP to maintain its current rates for public-agency customers. If the decision is upheld, the payment could have a one-time effect on the DWP’s annual cash transfer to the city’s general fund. “Because this affects a proprietary agency, any effects on the city budget are limited,” said Thomas Saenz, counsel to Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. Still, attorney Eric Havian, who represented the six agencies that sued the DWP, said the judge’s ruling appears to limit how much the utility can charge its public customers going forward. In particular, the judge prohibited the DWP from charging its public-agency customers for the power revenue transfer to the city’s general fund, an annual cash hand-over worth $185 million this year. Public-agency customers had complained that the DWP ratepayers are essentially being taxed and subsidizing city government through the transfer. “You’re not allowed to charge more for electricity and then turn around and use it for parks and the city budget. The law requires you to be very straightforward about that,” Havian said. Los Angeles Unified School District board member David Tokofsky has battled the city over the DWP reimbursement and said Tuesday he was pleased with the ruling. “I hope that City Hall will not pursue its fantasies of appealing, and instead dedicate these resources immediately to the families and children of LAUSD, the county, UCLA, and the other educational and public agencies victorious in this litigation,” he said. Last year, the DWP tentatively agreed to pay $900,000 to the LAUSD under a proposed settlement over a similar lawsuit related to water rates. LAUSD General Counsel Kevin Reed said he hoped the two agencies could settle again rather than pursue an appeal. “But once we get this money, it’s general fund money. It goes straight to the classroom,” he said. kerry.cavanaugh@dailynews.com (213) 978-0390 Ruling breakdown Under the ruling, the DWP will have to pay roughly: $95 million to Los Angeles Unified School District $45 million to Los Angeles County $39 million to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority $31 million to California state agencies $8 million to the Los Angeles Community College District and $5 million to the University of California, Los Angeles.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! The Los Angeles Department of Water and Power overcharged the school district, county and other government agencies for more than a decade and now must return more than $220 million, a judge has ruled. Six government entities sued in 2000, saying that under state law the DWP can only charge them for the cost of producing the electricity they use – less than what the utility had billed them. Among their concerns was that the DWP was overcharging them and using the funds to essentially subsidize the city budget through an annual transfer that this year totals $185 million. In his ruling Monday, San Bernardino County Superior Court Judge John P. Wade agreed that the DWP ignored state law and he ordered the utility to refund $222 million in overcharges from 1997 through 2006. last_img read more

Volcano Bay and the Psychology of the Queueless Theme Park

first_imgShare This!The TouringPlans blog is pleased to welcome guest author Laurie Breen to share some insights about the psychology of the queueless theme park. Enjoying a theme park with no lines sounds like every theme park fan’s dream. But does the current iteration of the queueless theme park really translate into a better experience for the average park-goer?With Universal Orlando’s new Volcano Bay water park, the global theme park giant launched its first “queueless” theme park. But did they miss the mark? It’s true, the lines are soooo long these days. As Jason Surrell, a creative director at Universal, explained to thestar.com, “We’ve known for years that waiting in line is one of the biggest dis-satisfiers in our guests’ day.” And of course, the pay-to-play line-cutting access offered by Express Pass goes against the egalitarian ideals upon which our great nation was founded. However, theme park queues serve many purposes within the operations of a theme park. By overlooking the psychological effects of standing in a line, as well as the way that people are accustomed to “touring” at a theme park, Universal may have thrown the cow out with the cattle pen.Crowd Control vs. Chaos Waiting in a queue may not be fun, but it is an orderly way to control crowds.Queues act as crowd control, essentially designating a place for hundreds or thousands of guests to stand each hour as they progress through the line, waiting for their turn to ride on their chosen attraction. This takes crowd pressure off the walkways, stores, and restaurants, allowing the park to increase capacity while adding more fun attractions. Imagine that you are in a theme park store where 100 or 200 guests are shopping at one time, wandering around, slowly browsing what’s on offer — the store starts to feel very crowded and claustrophobic. But now imagine the Greenhouse at Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey — in this space, each person is allotted a specific position to stand in and social norms dictate that people will line up in an orderly fashion. They (generally) maintain their place in line, they are all moving in the same direction, and they all keep a pretty consistent spacing between themselves and the next line-waiter. In this situation, a crowd of 100 or 200 people does not seem overwhelming at all.Fair Wait vs. Unfair Wait Here is a secret that any theme park super-fan will tell you: sure, waiting in line, in general, kind of sucks. But, sometimes, waiting in line doesn’t *completely* suck. The queue is where the story of the ride unfolds. It’s where the anticipation builds. It’s where you feel that nervous/excited pit in your stomach before you get on Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit. The fact is, humans bond through shared experiences. Waiting in line alone always seems longer than a wait with friends because you are sharing that experience of being stuck in line, together. As William James, noted philosopher, observed, “Boredom results from being attentive to the passage of time itself.” Theme parks know this. They use this. All the interactive queues, dating back to 1995 and the Indiana Jones Adventure in Disneyland, are designed to entice guests into the line and keep them happy while they’re waiting. Although the creative team for Volcano Bay has developed a fascinating backstory complete with creation myths and made-up tribes, guests have noted that the story is not really evident in the park. It’s possible that without the line, there’s not as much space to tell the story inside the park.Finally, let’s be real, is the queueless experience truly “queueless”?Eventually, there is a line. It may be short. You may have done most of your waiting elsewhere. But you will end up in a line. Instead of having all slides use the TapuTapu, some of the slides, at certain times, are now directing guests to “Ride Now” rather than tap in to wait. What this really means is that guests are able to enter a traditional queue and just wait for their turn. This may be an attempt on Universal’s part to balance the goal of the queueless theme park with the reality that traditional queues serve an important function. As of yet, theme parks are not able to predict human movement down to the second. Until that happens (and I hope it never does, because at that stage we would likely be some sort of thrill-ride-loving human-cyborg creature), you are going to end up in lines at some time at theme parks.Actually, I imagine cyborgs would be really good line-waiters.Laurie Breen has a degree in Psychology from Smith College, and works as a freelance writer and research communicator.center_img This brings us to another psychological benefit of the actual line — the concept that “unfair” waits seem longer than “fair” waits. When everyone is in a real live line, you can see who is first and who is next. Other virtual systems, such as Disney’s FastPass+ or Race Through New York Starring Jimmy Fallon issue a specific window of time for guests to return, setting clear expectations for guests. With Volcano Bay’s TapuTapu, you “tap” into the queue at the entrance to the ride and you are given a wait time that counts down until the time when you are able to return and ride. However, the variables of the wait times are not transparent to the guest. Some guests, such as Nicola from the UK, had a positive experience — “we tapped into the aqua coaster when it had an 80 minute wait, but within 60 minutes it went to zero.” However, Michael from North Carolina was frustrated during his visit on June 14th. When Michael’s kids tapped in to two different rides, Ohyah showed a 35 minute wait, and Ohno showed a 40 minute wait. He figured his kids would be able to ride at roughly the same time. But once they tapped in, the time shown on the TapuTapu for the smaller slide went down quickly, but the larger slide’s wait went up to 45 minutes, then 50 minutes, and then dropped more quickly after that. By his estimate, one child waited 20 minutes and the other waited 50 minutes for their respective rides. Because it was not clear what position he held in the virtual queue, it wasn’t clear how many people were ahead of him, and he wasn’t given any information as to why his wait time increased. This was perceived as an “unfair” line, increasing his dissatisfaction with the system, despite the promise of not having to wait in an actual line.Anticipation vs. Boredomlast_img read more

The United States Navy Celebrates Women’s History Month [Infographic]

first_imgMarch is Women’s History Month, a time to celebrate and honor the important achievements and struggles by women throughout U.S. history. Originally celebrated in 1978 as Women’s History Week by the Sonoma County (California) Commission on the Status of Women, the month of March was officially proclaimed Women’s History Month by the U.S. Congress in 1987. To celebrate Women’s History Month, the United States Navy created an infographic to highlight the milestones and accomplishments of women in the Navy. From the women who served aboard the first Navy hospital ship in 1862 to the first woman 4-star admiral in 2014, women have served on both sea and land. Today women make up 17 percent of the Navy’s active and Reserve members, with 59,000 active duty members and more than 9,000 Reserve personnel.Check out the key takeaways from the infographic. Key TakeawaysSince 1987, Women’s National History Month has commemorated the diverse contributions women have made, and continue to make, to our nation.1862: Sisters of the Holy Cross served aboard USS Red Rover, the Navy’s first hospital ship1908: Women officially began serving in the Navy with the establishment of the Nurse Corps in 1908. They were called The Sacred Twenty and served as the first Navy nurses.1917: To fill severe clerical shortages caused by World War I, the U.S. Navy approved the enlistment of women in 1917. The Navy’s first enlisted women more commonly referred to as Yeomanettes, served in clerical positions, translators, draftsmen, fingerprint experts, ship camouflage designers and recruiting agents.1942: After a 23 year absence, women returned to general Navy service as Women Accepted for Volunteer Emergency Service (WAVES) in early August 1942 for World War II1974: The sky is not the limit: six women earned their wings and became the first naval aviators1978: In 1978, Congress approved a change to Section 6015 of Title 1, U.S. Code, which allowed women to begin filling sea duty billets on selected non-combatant ships.1994: Opportunities were later expanded in 1994 to include service on combatant ships and squadrons following the repeal of the Risk Rule which had been in place since 19882012: Submarine warfare officeres earn their dolphins.2014: The first set of 4-start shoulder boards for women made for Vice Admiral Michelle Howard following confirmation as the first woman 4-star admiral2015: Enlisted women can serve on submarines. Today, women in our Navy make up 17 percent of the active and Reserve forcesShare this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Like this:Like Loading…RelatedUnited Nations: Step It Up for Gender EqualityTwenty years after the signing by 189 governments of a historic roadmap for women’s rights, women continue to face challenges in achieving gender equality. This month, women around the world are celebrating Beijing+20, the twenty-year anniversary of the historic women’s conference in Beijing resulting in the 1995 Beijing Declaration and…In “Miscellaneous”Celebrating American Workers: The History of Labor Day [Infographic]For people living in the United States, the first Monday in September is Labor Day, a day to celebrate American workers. And for many people, it means the last long weekend with family and friends before school starts. Learn about the history of work in the United States, how Labor…In “Miscellaneous”Veterans Day: Honoring Their ServiceToday the United States honors and thanks all who have served in the United States Armed Forces. Originally known as Armistice Day, Veterans Day was created as a federal holiday to commemorate the end of fighting in World War I. President Woodrow Wilson proclaimed November 11, 1919 the first Armistice…In “Miscellaneous”last_img read more

Video: When water droplets misbehave

first_imgYou might think we know all there is to know about raindrops, including how they form on windshields and windowpanes. But the physics of this process has long been a mystery. Now, a new study shows just how it happens, contradicting expectations of what a proper liquid should do. Most scientists assumed that the process of drop creation from a film would be a perfect reversal of what happens when drops spread out. These spreading droplets typically maintain a smooth, rounded shape—basically a series of ever wider drops—while they melt into a film. To find out what actually happens when that film fattens up into a drop, scientists designed a system that used electrodes to force a single droplet into a film. When they removed the electric field, the film reverted into a droplet, a process the scientists captured using high-speed imaging (above). Their finding? Liquid films that coalesce into drops first form a raised rim around their edges, looking a little bit like the stage at a one-ring circus, the researchers report today in Science Advances. This could mean an entirely new way of designing products that make use of thin-liquid films, like smartphone screens and self-cleaning paint; a better understanding should help manufacturers control the behavior of liquids.last_img read more

Mayweather protege Gervonta Davis issued arrest warrant for assault

first_img“Obviously, this is just an allegation,” he added. “Again, it just seems odd to me that a black man, allegedly, pushes or shoves — and I’m just reading what the TMZ article says — a police officer and he doesn’t get arrested on the spot, then a couple of weeks later, then they issue an arrest warrant based on their internal investigation. That just seems a little odd to me.”Gervonta Davis last fought against Hugo Ruiz on 9th February where he won the fight via brutal knockout.ALSO READ:VIDEO: Gervonta Davis brutally knocks out Hugo Ruiz in the first round to defend his featherweight title AdvertisementTwo-time super-featherweight world champion Gervonta Davis has been issued an arrest warrant for assault. The 24-year old boxer promoted by Floyd Mayweather has an arrest warrant from February 17, where Davis assaulted a man at the ATM and shoved the responding officer.According to ESPN, the altercation happened at a mall in McLean, Virginia on Feb. 17. Initially, the man who was assaulted didn’t press charges but later the victim provided a sworn affidavit to a magistrate that he was indeed assaulted by the Boxing superstar after which an arrest warrant was issued on 27th February.ESPN reports Davis could face up to one year and jail and a $2,500 fine if convicted.Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather promotions said that they will let the judicial system play its course. Advertisementlast_img read more

MSSA: It’s a high five for Ethan as Don Bosco rout Ryan Intl 8-0

first_imgEthan Gore produced a five-star performance scoring five goals which inspired Don Bosco (Borivli) to an 8-0 win against Ryan International (Chembur) in a boys U-12 Division-I league match of the MSSA inter-school football tournament at Azad Maidan yesterday. After Reagan Robert and Mark Essaki scored the opening two goals, Ethan came into action and netted three quick goals in succession and in as many minutes to knock the fight out of the Chembur schoolboys. Robert scored his second goal to give Don Bosco a 6-0 advantage. This prompted coach Agnelo Picardo to rest striker Ethan, but after he returned on the field, he scored two more goals to round off the winning margin. Earlier, St Stanislaus (Bandra) recovered to hold Bombay Scottish (Mahim) to a 1-1 draw. Bombay Scottish wrested the initiative with an early strike when Yash Kapadia tapped in from close following a move down the right flank and went into the interval with a 1-0 lead. The Bandra lads made a strong reply in the second session and captain Sahil Sargeuroh cancelled out Scottish’s lead with a perfect header in the 28th minute. Stanislaus almost got the winner in the final minute, but Vihaan Sylva’s deft placement bounced back off the upright and hit Scottish goalkeeper Reyansh Vora’s back but did not go into the goal. Reyansh was alert to collect the ball and save the day for his team. Catch up on all the latest sports news and updates here. Also download the new mid-day Android and iOS apps to get latest updateslast_img read more

New Guide Boosts Business Case for Valuing Ecosystem Services

first_imgAlmost all financial institutions are now concerned with this issue…A healthy environment is the foundation for a strong and sustainable economy. A key challenge for us is to manage the competing human demands [on resources] without undermining crucial ecosystem functions.”— Kyung-Ah Park, Managing Director of Goldman Sachs’ Center for Environmental Markets Kyung-Ah Park, Managing Director of Goldman Sachs’ Center for Environmental Markets, used her keynote address to underscore the guide’s relevance for business in a world of depleting resources. “Almost all financial institutions are now concerned with this issue,” she said. “A healthy environment is the foundation for a strong and sustainable economy. A key challenge for us is to manage the competing human demands [on resources] without undermining crucial ecosystem functions.”WRI, International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), and WBCSD have already collaborated to road test the guide with 14 companies. Representatives of these companies were on hand at Tuesday’s event to discuss their experiences.“Our mission is to be the most respected company in our sector,” Erica Guerra said of her company Holcim, whose Corporate Ecosystem Valuation road test examined the restoration of wetlands in the United Kingdom. “Our approach is not to be philanthropic, we don’t want to just write a check. We want to engage with the communities we operate in.” Holcim’s project achieved 1.4 million pounds in benefits to the company and the local community.Representatives from some of the 14 road testing companies discussed their experiences with the Guide at Tuesday’s event. Photo credit: Kathy Doucette, WRI Representatives from over 60 organizations convened at the World Resources Institute on May 3 for the launch of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development’s (WBCSD) Guide to Corporate Ecosystem Valuation.The Guide was motivated in part by the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment’s conclusions that over half the benefits we receive from intact ecosystems have been lost or degraded over a 50 year period. It builds on WRI’s and WBCSD’s Corporate Ecosystem Services Review, a method that helps business managers develop strategies that address new risks and opportunities resulting from the acceleration of ecosystem change.Janet Ranganathan, WRI’s Vice President for Science and Research, opened the event by giving examples of how ecosystems services and economic development are intimately entwined. “A new highway, or a new mine doesn’t just impact the environment, it also impacts local ecosystems services such as freshwater, which in turn can impact business.” Looking at their operations in this holistic way, and placing a value on such ecosystems services, can help companies improve decision making, she added.Failure to properly recognize and manage ecosystem services costs corporations billions of dollars annually in lost natural capital, according to WBCSD’s James Griffiths. He touted the new Guide, which provides a framework for valuing ecosystem services, as a tool for businesses to strengthen their performance. “The Guide to Corporate Ecosystem Valuation (CEV) is a way we’re hoping companies get it right,” he said. “Economic growth that delivers on the social agenda and is based on ecological values. This is about leveraging the tremendous value of ecosystems.”center_img Mark Weick of Dow emphasized the Guide’s benefit to a company’s bottom line. “[Dow uses] a lot of energy, something like a medium-sized OPEC member. So we’ve been very interested in energy efficiency. But we recognized that we weren’t being efficient with our ecosystem services. We’re making sure we can value ecosystem services properly, not only today, but in the future.That understanding of a business’s impact reflects the guiding concept of the Guide to Corporate Ecosystem Valuation: businesses both depend on and affect the ecosystems in which they operate.Mary Beth West of the International Union for Conservation of Nature said that while the CEV provides an important framework for businesses to leverage the value of ecosystems, it must be used in conjunction with other tools, some of which are not yet fully developed. Event participants emphasized the need for collaboration among businesses, NGOs, and stakeholders in order to enhance the feasibility of ecosystem valuation.“We’ll take a blend of the existing tools that are out there,” Weick said. “Hopefully we’ll be able to learn what is helpful and what is not helpful. We want to engage very strongly in a dialogue by publishing what we’re doing.”Also looking to the future, Jody Strickland of Weyerhaeuser said that it will be critically important to “link ecosystem value processes to conventional financial accounting…so we can determine how much value an ecosystem can generate and balance the trade-offs.”The Guide to Corporate Ecosystems Valuation is a companion report to the Corporate Ecosystem Services Review, published by WRI, WBCSD and the Meridian Institute, which provides guidelines on business risks and opportunities arising from ecosystem change.last_img read more

Australia finish day one unbeaten

first_img@Eden_RichardsThe Australian Men’s Open side has capped off a perfect day for the Aussies, defeating New Zealand 9-4 in an emphatic team display.The win means Australia went through Day One of the Trans Tasman Series undefeated, with both the Women’s Open team and the Mixed Open side defeating their New Zealand counterparts earlier in the day.The Australian Men put in a full 40-minute performance to finish Friday’s fixtures, never once falling behind New Zealand. Australia opened the scoring in the 3rd minute through Jordan Marshall King who received a cheeky pass from Samuel Brisby after the speedy Aussie cut straight through New Zealand’s defence.New Zealand didn’t take long to reply, with Mitamumrua Graham finding Sean Law with a flat pass to make it 1-1 in the 4th minute.But Australia hit the lead in the 5th minute after a superb passage of play resulted in Peter Norman dummying to score.In what was a tight first eight minutes, New Zealand hit back again, scoring a try in the right corner after an outstanding catch from Tarkyn Loloselo saw him level the scores at 2-2.However, Australia quickly regained the lead when Matt Prowse crossed for a touchdown in the 9th minute.And the Aussies didn’t let the Kiwis respond this time, scoring back-to-back touchdowns courtesy of a huge overlap that saw Brisby cross the line and give Australia a 4-2 lead.That’s how it stayed until the final seconds of the first half, with Prowse crossing for his second touchdown of the match right on the half-time siren.That touchdown gave Australia a 5-2 lead at the break and meant New Zealand would have a lot to do in the second half if they were to salvage anything from this match-up.And the Kiwis responded by starting the second half in great fashion, scoring through Connah Pamatatau to cut the margin to two in the 24th minute.At 5-3 in the 35th minute New Zealand had to be the next team to score and they couldn’t do that, instead letting Marshall King score his second touchdown to extend Australia’s lead to 6-3.The Aussies now had all the momentum and when Dean Springfield scored in the right corner for Australia it became now or never for New Zealand with seven minutes to play and a four-touchdown margin.But it wasn’t to be for the Kiwis, with Scott Buckley scoring in the 37th minute to give Australia an 8-3 lead and all but ice the game.Buckley grabbed another in the last minute of play, putting an exclamation point on a comprehensive performance from Australia.New Zealand managed to score a consolation touchdown with the last play of the day, but the damage had been done by that point, with Australia winning by five touchdowns.The two sides will meet again on Saturday and the Kiwis will be desperate to keep the Series alive.Australia 9 (Marshall King 2, Prowse 2, Buckley 2, Norman, Brisby, Springfield touchdowns) defeated New Zealand 4 (Loloselo, Soutar-Finch, Law, Pamatatau touchdowns)Related LinksMen’s Wrap Day Onelast_img read more