BFF Calls for Trust Between Gov’t, Civil Service

first_imgAmid threats of imminent go-slow action expected to commence on December 16, 2019, Better Future Foundation (BFF), has appealed to the Consortium of Public Sector Workers Organizations to remain constructively engaged with the government in response to the workers’ demands as contained in the October 23, 2019, seven-count Memorandum of Understanding (MoU).In a statement issued in Monrovia on Tuesday, December 10, 2019, BFF also called on the government to remain committed to honoring its binding obligations, as contained in the MoU signed between the government and the over 77,000 public sector workers.BFF said the MoU, which was made and entered by the parties on Tuesday, October 29, 2019, borders on the payment of salary arrears, and improving the economic livelihood of public sector employees and their families.The MoU was also based on an earlier resolution signed by the Consortium on October 23, 2019, to peacefully engage the government aimed at addressing the plight of the workers, and for the preservation and sustainability of Liberia’s hard-won peace and democracy.BFF, in the release further said that an essential component of mitigating problems in a post-conflict and fragile state, such as Liberia primarily borders on government’s sincere commitment in building a relationship of trust, and confidence with its citizens, especially public sector workers, who constitute a major source of revenue generation for sustainable economic, peace and development in the country.According to the BFF, the government, which is represented in the MoU by the Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Nathaniel F. McGill, Finance and Development Planning Minister, Samuel D. Tweah, Jr.; Moses Kollie, Minister of Labor; Cllr. Frank Musah Dean, Minister of Justice; and the Director General of the Civil Service Agency of Liberia, Laurine W. Johnson, have committed to work with the Consortium of Public Sector Workers Organizations, to implement protective adjustments to civil servants salaries, while maintaining the government US$297 million to ensure stability in the civil servants’s salaries before the end of November 2019.“The government has also committed to regularize the monthly payment of all civil servants, and to issue monthly pay slips by December 2019 consistent with the stable pay determined by end of November 2019,” BFF added.In the MoU, the government further committed to regularizing the employment status of all public school teachers on the Supplementary payroll, who received salary increment under its “harmonization program” on or before end of December 2019, said the BFF release, signed by its secretariat.In line with the MoU, the Consortium, which comprises a workforce of over 77,000 employees, was represented by Moibah K. Johnson, president Civil Servants Union of Liberia; Mary W. Mulbah Nyumah, National Teachers Association of Liberia; Joseph Soko Tamba, National Health Workers Union of Liberia; Vinton Gareay, MCSS Teachers’ Association, etc.It was further agreed upon that the government and the Consortium remain engaged during these periods for better communication and problem-solving and that the Inter-Agency Wage Harmonization Team, will improve data and information sharing amongst technicians of the CSA and MFDP to ensure better communication, and information dissemination to the Consortium of Public Sector Workers Organizations, and civil servants across the country.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

AG’s mistruths jeopardise fragile Guyana economy

first_img…as Jagdeo warns nation now subject to more rigorous FATF/CFATF scrutinyAttorney General and Legal Affairs Minister Basil Williams has misled the Guyanese nation, more specifically the business community and local financial institutions, by insinuating that Guyana was free and clear with respect to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) and the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force (CFATF) regime.Former President Bharrat Jagdeo said the false sense of security that Williams attempted to foist on the nation could in fact cause the country to repeat mistakes and jeopardise major sectors of the economy, specifically the economic sector.Jagdeo gave the damning warning on Thursday, and said Williams had attempted to give the impression that Guyana was free and clear of the FATF/CFATF regimes since the country had successfully exited the third round of evaluations by the international community with regard to Guyana’s Anti-Money Laundering and Countering the Financing of Terrorism (AML/CFT) regime.“This is not so” according to the Opposition Leader, who said that while Guyana has, in fact, concluded its third-round evaluation, it was now subjected to a fourth round of evaluation, which would entail more rigorous compliance measures, including the actual prosecution of money laundering offences.“What will happen is under this review, they will be required to go after actual cases,” Jagdeo said.He suggested that instead of the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) obtaining a list of nine former Ministers from the Ministry of the Presidency to target, “they will have to go after people that engage in money laundering and if they don’t, they will fail and jeopardise the financial system”.Jagdeo recalled too that Williams had hinted at mutual evaluations following the successful exit from the third round of evaluations, but that was a misnomer, since Guyana would not be evaluating FATF or CFATF, as it would be the other way around.The former President said the fourth round of evaluations relates to technical compliance and not simply adhering to recommendations made and that will be difficult to attain.“We still have a lot of work to do,” he said.The Opposition Leader noted that Williams had said “we were free and clear…we were happy and good with the international community regarding money laundering issues”, but “this is not so”.According to Jagdeo, “we may very well find that we are not compliant in applying this (AML/CFT) Act” when again evaluated.He used the occasion to again bemoan the fact that the predicament that the country was in could have been avoided had A Partnership for National Unity and the Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC), while in Opposition, supported the amendments promulgated by the then Government.“We could have avoided a lot of this had they supported us from the beginning when we made two attempts to pass recommendations that would have made us compliant.”Speaking to the false sense of security that Williams attempted to finagle on the nation, Jagdeo pointed to recent statements by the Attorney General, which suggested that local financial institutions were now able to transact business without enhanced security measures in place, highlighting that that was “not true”.He elaborated saying if one were to venture to a local bank, it would be observed that there was no change in the requirements for transacting business, including the opening of accounts or the sending and receiving of monies overseas.Local financial institutions, including local banks, have not seen any dramatic change in their relationship with correspondent international banks as a result of Williams’ pronouncements, Jagdeo said.“We cannot play games with the future of the financial sector…A thriving economy is built on a solid, sound financial system and sector,” the Opposition Leader stressed.He warned too that by looking to score cheap political points, the Attorney General ran the risk of jeopardising the local financial sector, and this was further compounded by the international trend towards “de-risking”.This refers to international financial institutions and countries looking to distance themselves from non-compliant regimes. “If that happens and it snowballs out of control, I had spoken about us going back to Stone Age in terms of financial sector development and growth,” he said.last_img read more

APNU/AFC has done very things it accused PPP of doing – Jagdeo

first_imgThe irony that the People’s Progressive Party has had to resort to the courts to get the coalition Government to pay over monies into the Consolidated Fund, after being accused of that very practice when in office, is not lost on PPP General Secretary Bharrat Jagdeo.During a recent press conference, Jagdeo zeroed in on the recent writings of Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, who, in his column, accused the PPP of not paying public monies into the Consolidated Fund. But Jagdeo was not amused with the current legal fight to get the Government to pay into the Fund the US$18 million signing bonus it received from ExxonMobil.“Imagine, he’s saying nonpayment of public monies into the Consolidated Fund. They said that about the GGMC. They said that in NFMU, the housing fund, etc. (They said) those were slush funds, (and that) we didn’t pay it over. They did audits there; nothing came out of the audits. They recognise they (the funds) were all legally there, they refused to transfer them,” Jagdeo detailed.“This is the only Government since — a very long time — that we have to go to court now to get them to pay the US$18 million that they kept in secret, to pay it into the Consolidated Fund. We had to go to court for that. The other time (we had to do this) was in the 80s, when they used to export the gold from Guyana,” Jagdeo detailed.Explaining the manoeuvres that were once employed in the 1980s to bypass the Consolidated Fund, Jagdeo related that, armed with an overdraft, the then Government would export gold and bank the proceeds in Canada rather than place same into the Consolidated Fund.“Then the Office of the President used to give directions to the manager over there to release funds to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, bypassing the Consolidated Fund. If you go back to the early audit reports, you will find that,” the former President explained.Besides the signing bonus, which has been the subject of court battles, Government was only last year accused of using the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) as a slush fund to make land purchases from the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GUYSUCO).Referring to the reports, Opposition Parliamentarian Juan Edghill had questioned why the money was coming from the CH&PA, rather than the Government or the Consolidated Fund. He had noted that the law requires excess monies from agencies to be paid into the Consolidated Fund.In the 10th Parliament, the PPPC was accused of holding monies in extra- budgetary agencies. And those monies were even referred to by (the AFC) as slush funds. One of those agencies was the Central Housing and Planning Authority.“And the (APNU/AFC campaign) promise was (that) all these monies would be transferred to the Consolidated Fund,” Edghill had stated. “I am shocked that the CH&PA has $2 billion in an account. Why is this money not coming from Central Government and the Consolidated Fund?”According to Edghill, the Permanent Secretary of the Communities Ministry, Emil McGarrell, had provided assurances that monies in the CH&PA Fund would be transferred to Ccentral Government’s Consolidated Fund.“If you accuse the PPPC of all of these bad things and violations, I don’t expect the God-fearing, righteous, sincere APNU/AFC Government to be doing this,” Edghill said as he brandished the headlines. “I am judging them by their own standards.“We are happy that GuySuCo is getting money, but we are very concerned about the process that is being used to get this money to GuySuCo. This is criminal behavior,” Edghill had warned.During a post-Cabinet press conference, Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, revealed that the cash-strapped GuySuCo would receive the money as payment for its land. This comes after an emergency cabinet meeting had been held earlier this week between GuySuCo officials and the Government.All that Harmon revealed about the source of the cash was that the CH&PA, with assistance from the Finance Ministry, would be making the purchase.last_img read more

Leeds land League Two Player of the Year on four-year deal

first_img1 Kemar Roofe in action for Oxford Leeds United have signed striker Kemar Roofe from Oxford United for an undisclosed fee.The 23-year-old has penned a four-year contract with the Championship side.Roofe fired 26 goals to help Oxford secure promotion to League One last season and was crowned League Two Player of the Year.He is the sixth signing made this summer by Whites boss Garry Monk, who was appointed as Steve Evans’ successor in June.“It’s an amazing feeling,” Roofe said of his switch to Elland Road. “I don’t think I’ll actually realise how big the club is until the first game of the season, but I’m amazed by what I’ve seen so far.“As soon as I found out, I was really pleased to be a part of a club like this. The club has a great history and a bright future as well.“You can tell there’s something exciting happening here with the signings we’re making – they’re all good signings.“I can’t wait to start getting to know the squad and playing football again.”Roofe joins Marcus Antonsson, Kyle Bartley, Hadi Sacko, Robert Green and Matt Grimes in moving to Leeds this summer.last_img read more


first_imgCllr Niamh KennedyElection candidate Niamh Kennedy has met with the Finn Valley Wind Action Group and expressed her objections to the proposal at Carrickduff.The Independent County Councillor previously revealed that she will be taking a stand against such wind farm proposals as part of her election campaign.Ms Kennedy revealed “This is not even on a Donegal scale; this is the largest wind farm in planning in the Country at the moment, 49 turbines, each 156 metres in height, each one taller than the spire in O’Connell Street. It is an utterly mind-boggling industrial maze planned for an area of over forty square kilometres that runs from Lough Mourne in Barnesmore Gap to the back of Castlefin. “Most of the turbines are planned to be erected on blanket bog or on clear felled forests and I have already spoken out in Lifford with respect to the madness of this as we wonder at measures to mitigate against future flooding in the Finn Valley. It’s all about planning they say. Poor planning in the past. Well let’s start the future better even from that point of view and not build this monstrous wind farm and destroy a great swathe of our rugged, walking hill county bordering Tyrone.”She added that she was very alarmed that an application as complex as this with over 200 submissions from the local area to An Bord Pleanala was not facilitated with an oral hearing.“It is mind boggling the effect on the communities, yet the wind farm company were invited to respond to all the submissions made by both statutory bodies and by the public. Even more frustrating no information has been made available from this hearing to the stakeholders.“Where is the transparency in this? Sitting listening to the Finn Valley group I really felt for them and the toll that this massive project has had on their lives over the past year. They are alarmed and afraid for the future knowing that these towering turbines will spin in their lives for the next 25 years. Many people apparently are talking of having to move out,” she said. Stating she was pleased that DCC objected to 33 of these turbines on the basis of visual residential amenity, she added that she disturbed that our planning authority has little say in this complex development.“I will be travelling throughout the affected areas over the coming weeks and I will be speaking out for these people who need to have a voice,” she added.CLLR KENNEDY SAYS SHE IS ALARMED CARRICKDUFF WINDFARM PROPOSAL DID NOT GET ORAL HEARING was last modified: January 12th, 2016 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Carrickduff WindfarmCllr Niamh Kennedydonegallast_img read more

From high school to Carnegie Hall

first_img Over the years, the school’s award-winning choirs have traveled far and wide, netting trophies and medals for excellence. Seventeen-year-old senior Heather Roney, who has been a choir member each of her four years at Valencia, heaved a sigh of relief. “This year we’re just performing,” she said. “I don’t have to worry about the competition. I can just enjoy it.” The students will follow the holiday show with another performance on Monday and squeeze in as many sights as they can in between rehearsals. The trip’s $1,600 per person price tag – students pay their own way – includes airfare, lodging at the Grand Hyatt near the theater district, a harbor cruise, a trip to the Empire State Building, and perhaps stops at the Statue of Liberty and art museums and a walk around Ground Zero, Enns said. Students and their friends and families have been fundraising since May to help defray costs. Money earned by scaring Six Flags Magic Mountain Fright Fest patrons and a bake sale at Lombardi Ranch has been deposited into individual students’ accounts. Sixteen-year-old sophomore Amanda Rippee has raised $1,350 so far from participating in those two events, she said. The choral groups are not biding their time till the big event. The advanced concert choir will participate in Disneyland’s Candlelight Carol on Dec. 3, and singers will perform at the Master Chorale’s annual High School Choir Festival at Disney Hall. To raise money for the New York trip, the choirs will hold a boutique on Saturday on campus. More than 40 vendors will be selling handmade holiday gifts, crafts, ornaments, handmade jewelry, clothes and food. Student vocalists will deliver solo performances. Judy O’Rourke, (661) 257-5255 HOW TO HELP A boutique will be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday in the multipurpose room at Valencia High School, 27801 Dickason Drive, to raise money for the campus choirs’ trip to Carnegie Hall. 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 MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The principal conductor-in-residence for a company that produces Carnegie Hall concerts said the students have clearly distinguished themselves. “The only way that groups can appear on our concert series is through a personal recommendation of a nationally or internationally known conductor or through an audition tape,” said Jonathan Griffith, of MidAmerica Productions. “It is an honor. We do not solicit groups to appear in Carnegie Hall. We only invite groups deemed to be of quality to appear on our series.” The teens will share an experience few people have known. While tourists can pay for a glimpse of the hall, they are not permitted onstage. It is solely the domain of performers, Griffith said. One of the up-and-coming performers is still on cloud nine. “It doesn’t really feel real to any of us right now,” said junior Bavani Selvarajah, 15. “It’s been a lot of our dreams to perform there. We don’t know if we’ll ever get to perform there again.” VALENCIA – Five vocalist groups from Valencia High School have been invited to perform in the same venue as legends Arturo Toscanini and Count Basie: Carnegie Hall. About 100 students will take the stage in New York on Easter Sunday to perform an emotional and expansive work by a 20th century French composer. “We were invited after they heard our vocal jazz CD,” said Christine Enns, Valencia’s choral director. “They said, ‘Do you have any other groups?”‘ The school’s mixed choir, women’s chamber, concert choir and two vocal jazz ensembles will begin rehearsing Francis Poulenc’s “Gloria” in December. last_img read more

A cuppa or 2 may help stop cancer

first_imgCHICAGO – Swedish researchers have found evidence, although it is far from conclusive, that drinking a couple of cups of tea every day might help reduce the risk of developing ovarian cancer. The study involved 61,057 Swedish women who answered a questionnaire about their diets and then were tracked for an average of 15 years through 2004. During that time, 301 women developed ovarian cancer. The incidence of ovarian cancer was 46 percent less among women who reported drinking two or more cups of tea a day than among women who drank no tea. Drinking less than two cups also appeared to help, but not as much. The researchers did not break out the results by tea types, but most of the tea drinkers consumed black tea. Both black and green tea contain polyphenols, substances thought to block cell damage that can lead to cancer. “Certainly the idea of exploring agents or lifestyles that could make a difference on ovarian cancer would be very timely and important,” Buring said. “My concern is with these kinds of studies – that people who drink two cups of tea daily are different from people who don’t in ways that go through their whole lifestyle.” Ovarian cancer is diagnosed in more than 20,000 U.S. women yearly. On average, U.S. women face about a 1-in-58 chance of developing the disease. It is hard to detect early because its symptoms, including abdominal bloating, indigestion and urinary urgency, can be vague and mimic less serious conditions. 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 MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake Previous studies on whether tea might help prevent various kinds of cancer have yielded conflicting results. Researchers Susanna Larsson and Alicja Wolk of the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm said more research is needed to sort out the inconsistencies. Their study was published in Monday’s Archives of Internal Medicine. “If these findings are real, they’d be important because ovarian cancer is the fourth-leading cause of cancer death in women,” said Marji McCullough, a nutritional epidemiologist at the American Cancer Society. Dr. Julie Buring of Harvard’s Brigham and Women’s Hospital, who studies chronic diseases and cancer, said factors other than tea drinking might explain the results. The tea drinkers may have been healthier than the other women, she said. last_img read more


first_imgTwo Donegal schools have had their appeals for staffing levels upheld.Joe McHugh TDThe schools are Glenmaquin National School in Knockbrack, Letterkenny and also Gartan National School.The Department of Education and Skills issued the update after the second meeting of the Primary Staffing Appeals Board in relation to the staffing levels of primary schools for the 2014/15 school year. Deputy Joe McHugh said he welcomed the announcement.“ The challenges facing small schools are an issue I have been raising continuously, calling for the Department to acknowledge that small schools in rural areas are facing different challenges from those in heavily populated areas and their unique positions need to be taken into consideration,” he said. TWO DONEGAL SCHOOLS WIN THEIR BATTLES ON STAFFING LEVELS was last modified: June 18th, 2014 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:deputy joe mchughdonegalGartan NSGlenmaquin NSschoolslast_img read more

Man who was ‘frothing at the mouth’ to Gardai told to ‘grow up a bit’

first_imgA man who was ‘frothing at the mouth’ after being ejected from a Letterkenny pub has been told to ‘grow up a bit’.Gardaí were called to The Cavern just after 10pm on May 26 and witnessed Paul McEleney, from Highbury Apartments, High Road, Letterkenny being restrained by three bouncers. “He became very aggressive and was roaring and shouting. He was frothing at the mouth,” Inspector Barry Doyle told Letterkenny District Court.“Garda Hennigan spoke to the door staff. He had been refused service and he was asked to stop acting in that manner.“He was highly abusive, he continued to be threatening and was arrested. He continued the behaviour during the detention, until he had no other option but to calm down.”Solicitor for McEleney said his client had ‘made apologies’ and was set to begin employment this week in London.“He is a very civil young man when presenting in a sober manner,” the solicitor said.“He is the antithesis of this when under the influence. On the night in question he did fall from the wagon. He is very forthright.“He has since continued on the straight and narrow and is liaising with the addiction services. He is a troubled young man, but he realises the difficulty he is in.”McEleney who has ten previous convictions for assault and criminal damage from 2013 and 2014, was fined €250 and given four months to pay by Judge Paul Kelly who advised the defendant to ‘grow up a bit’Man who was ‘frothing at the mouth’ to Gardai told to ‘grow up a bit’ was last modified: September 8th, 2017 by Staff WriterShare 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:Judge Paul KellyletterkennyLetterkenny District CourtPaul McEleneylast_img read more

Play Your Part TV series to debut on SABC 2 in June

first_imgThe show aims to make a positive impact towards the growth and development of South Africans by profiling and showcasing the achievements of ordinary individualsAs South Africa celebrates 20 years of democracy, a truly inspiring TV series titled Play Your Part debuts on SABC 2 on Sunday, 15 June. Hosted by Kabelo Mabalane, the exciting series aims to inspire and ignite South Africans to take action and make a difference in their communities.The TV series, which will feature thirteen 48 minute episodes, has been created by Brand South Africa and will be screened weekly on Sunday nights from 15 June onwards. Episodes will first be screened on SABC 2 at 9pm, with a repeat show on an alternative SABC channel.“Brand South Africa is pleased to be a part of this initiative aimed at creating a spirit of active citizenship, pride and patriotism in our country,” says Brand South Africa strategic marketing and communications director Wendy Tlou. “We have much to be proud of during our last 20 years of democracy, but it is time for us all to coalesce around our National Development Plan, Vision 2030, which aims to ensure South Africa’s economic and social growth and development. “Active citizenship, pride and patriotism will be crucial in driving the implementation of the Vision 2030 by all stakeholders.”POSITIVE IMPACTThe show aims to make a positive impact towards the growth and development of South Africans by profiling and showcasing the achievements of ordinary individuals across a broad spectrum of disciplines, who inspire the notion of active citizenship in our country especially over the last 20 years and how their continued efforts, have contributed to our now 20 years of democracy.Each 48 minute episode will explore the remarkable journeys of struggle, obstacles, successes, triumph, sometimes tragedy and ultimately finding solutions and creating legacies.Extensive research, archive footage and interviews have been used on the show to tell the story of our transformation and unification as a young democracy. Stories of individuals that fight corruption, build safer communities, reform public service, improve health care and the quality of education, training, innovation and continue promoting active citizenry will take centre stage in the 13 part TV series.At the end of each episode there will be a cohesive message and challenge to the viewers to “Play Your Part” through a call to action.“I am of the conviction that ordinary South Africans doing extraordinary work should be profiled for the sole reason of inspiring others that they too can make a difference and play their part in moving the country forward,” says show presenter Kabelo Mabalane.last_img read more