Govt, union trade barbs over future of sugar industry

first_imgEnmore Martyrs’ remembranceAs Guyanese observed Enmore Martyr’s Day on Thursday, the premier sugar workers representative body, the Guyana Agriculture and General Workers Union (GAWU), and Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo took on each other on the future of the sugar industry.This was at the annual remembrance rally at the monument site in Enmore, East Coast Demerara, where dozens of persons, including relatives of the martyrs, gathered to pay homage to the five sugar workers who were killed while fighting against working conditions.Addressing the gathering, General Secretary of GAWU Seepaul Narine, noted that while the brutal killing of the sugar workers at Enmore some 68 years ago gave an impetus to the political struggles for freedom, struggles and sacrifices of sugar workers for betterment should not be downplayed, especially since that struggle continues to date.Narine expressed concerns over the events taking place within the sugar industry and the impact they are having on the standard of living of thousands of workers and their dependents. “Here we can say with certainty that the workers struggles are continuing. New challenges have been thrown up and workers felt compelled to defend and safeguard their interests,” he stated.The General Secretary pointed to the fact that for the first time in over 30 years, sugar workers were the only category of the State’s workers that did not receive a pay rise last year. He then went onto mention the “vexing” issue of the closure of both the Wales and La Bonne Intention (LBI) Estates, which he said threatens the jobs of one-tenth of the country’s workforce.“Until now, neither the Unions nor the public have been informed of properly studied proposal that the authorities hope to implement on the impending closure of Wales Estate. Also of importance to our Union, is the fate that awaits the scores of workers linked to the soon to be closed LBI Estate… The Government seems not to be listening to the voice of the working people,” he remarked while recalling the resolution unanimously approved on last Labour Day by workers of the Guyana Trade Union Congress (GTUC) and the Federation of Independent Trade Unions of Guyana (FITUG) calling on Government not to close the estates.According to Narine, while the sugar industry is confronted by challenges, GAWU is optimistic that it can be viable again, that is, with the adequate resources, a motivated workforce and a knowledge management.Moreover, GTUC’s General Secretary Lincoln Lewis posited that the sugar industry has been mismanaged over the years with no concrete sustainable developmental plan to keep it afloat. He added too that the Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) Board had become an institution for political patronage and not the development of policies to safe guard the industry or ensured the continued gainful employment for workers.On the other hand, during his feature address, Prime Minister Mosses Nagamootoo defended the closures, outlining that the industry has been making tremendous losses and to survive it cannot rely solely on sugar anymore. He explained that plans to diversify the sector dated back since the 1980s and not 2015 as claimed.“In the 1980s, there were plans for other crops, for aqua-culture, for fish farms, for dairy industries within the land owned by GuySuCo. A part from diversification, the option for privatisation was also on the table. After nationalisation, Booker Tate Limited was brought back to prepare the industry for privatisation; and that was after nationalisation, it was not the (David) Granger-Nagamootoo Government that was preparing it for the slaughter,” he remarked.Furthermore, the Prime Minister remarked that his Administration does not want to put any sugar worker on the breadline, but noted that they are placed at a cross road. “We will be damned if we don’t do anything and damned if we do something but doing nothing will spell disaster (for the industry),” he noted.Nagamootoo went on to say that the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) that was conducted into the sector has warned that if nothing is done soon, not only will sugar perish but it could take the entire economy down with it.To this end, the Prime Minister posited that the all stakeholders should play a part in reviewing the recommendations coming out of the CoI, noting that an all party consensus is need to determine the future of the sugar industry.Moreover, the Prime Minister pointed out that in order to survive, GuySuCo existed on credit and borrowing, with the sugar debt raising from $55.3 billion in 2006 to a whopping $118 billion. He argued that this is not a cash strapped industry but one that is in up to its nose in indebtedness and so it is not wise to tread forward in this path.last_img read more

As Chief Medical Officer Continues her 21-day Self-Imposed Quarantine, Dr. Dahn’s Special Assistant…

first_imgThe Reverend Napoleon Brathwaite III,  Special Assistant to Liberia’s  Chief Medical, Dr. Bernice Dahn, was buried last Saturday at Thinker’s Village, off the Robertsfield Highway.Rev. Brathwaithe died last Thursday morning of the deadly Ebola virus.  He was in his 55th year.Health and Social Welfare Minister Dr. Walter Gweingale ordered the immediate spraying of Dr. Dahn’s office and the rest of the building in Congo Town, which houses the Ministry.Immediately following Rev. Brathwaite’s untimely death, his boss, Chief Medical Officer Bernice Dahn, in an exemplary display of self discipline and medical efficiency, quarantined herself at home.  She separated herself from her husband, Counselor Roland Dahn, and her children at their home in Redhill Field, Virginia, Montserrado County. “I only speak with them, but we have absolutely no physical contact whatsoever,” she told the Daily Observer.  Thankfully, Dr. Dahn assured this newspaper that she is in good health.Rev. Brathwaite’s last day in office at the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare, according to Dr. Dahn, was Monday, September 15, when he fell ill.   She visited him at his Barnersville Estate residence on September 20, where she saw him but did not touch him, anyone or anything in the house.  It was at that point that she decided to quarantine herself, remaining home, isolating herself from her husband, children and anyone else in the house.  The Health Ministry has since, of course, been out of the question.Rev. Brathwaite was later admitted to the Ebola health clinic near the ELWA Hospital.  He was later tested positive as an Ebola victim.  He died there  last Thursday morning.Twice a widower, having lost  two wives to the cruel hand of death, Rev. Brathwaite leaves to mourn his loss eight  children; two aunts; two sisters; a brother; and many other relatives.       Dr. Dahn, having begun her self-quarantining on September 20, has 11 more days to go, and is scheduled to end her quarantine on October 11, 2014.Napoleon Nathaniel Brathwaite III was born in Gbarnga, then Central Province (now Bong County), on Christmas Day, December 25, 1959 to the union of Napoleon Brathwaite II and his consort Esther.  A native of Crozierville,  Montserrado County, Napoleon III was connected to several of the Township’s families—the Heaths, Brathwaites, Portes, Eastmans and Bests.  Not long after he was born, his father, Napoleon II, gave him to Mrs. Lilian Best, matriarch of the Best family of Broad Street, Snapper Hill, to be raised.  It was in Monrovia  that he commenced his elementary education.  Upon his completion of high school from the Monrovia Central High in the 1970s, he matriculated to the Baptist Theological Seminary, where he took the Bachelor’s in Theology and was ordained a Baptist pastor.He served with the Liberia Opportunities Industrial Corporation (LOIC) and the National Bible Society of Liberia before entering the Ministry of Health.Until his death he was pastor of the Peaceful Baptist Church at Battery Factory, Gardnersville, Monrovia.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

US Health Experts End Visit to Liberia

first_img(From left) Dr. Rebecca Mae Martin, CGH – CDC, Cllr. Tolbert Nyenswah, NPHIL, Dr. Judith Ann Monroe, Dr. Desmond Williams, CDCA high-powered delegation from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in partnership with the Center for Global Health (CGH) has ended an official visit as guest of the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL).According to an NPHIL release, the delegation, which comprised experts US Centers for Disease Control Foundation along with the Center for Global Health was in-country to follow-up on ‘Programmatic Objectives’ aimed at exploring CDCF success stories and lessons learned from previous projects; support CDC Country Offices in advancing their public-private partnership strategies; and paid courtesy visits to relevant stakeholders.Members of the delegation included Dr. Rebecca Mae Martin – Director, Center for Global Health, CDC, Ms. Sukeshi Mehta Roberts; Special Assistant, CGH, CDC, Dr. Judith Ann Monroe; President and CEO, CDC Foundation, Ms. Monica Glass Thornton; Senior Advancement Officer, CDC Foundation and Ms. Gail Lucille Mccabe – Executive Director, Creative Media Matters.On Friday, July 19, 2019, while in Liberia, Dr. Rebecca Martin and Dr. Judy Monroe, visited the Acute Febrile Illness (AFI) project sites at Redemption Hospital in New Kru Town, Bushrod Island outside Monrovia and Star of the Sea Health Center in West Point, an adjoining Township in Monrovia. On the same day, the delegation met NPHIL’s senior management led by the Director General, Cllr. Tolbert Nyenswah at the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), participated in National Emergency Preparedness and Response Committee (NEPRC) weekly meeting to observe impact of CDC and CDCF support for EOCs and observed an Internal CDC meeting at CDC EOC suite.Speaking at the meeting, Dr. Martin praised Liberia for the tremendous work done in the country’s recovery, and reaffirmed CDC’s support.The NEPRC Meeting is a periodic meeting held at the National Public Health Institute of Liberia, involving partners and stakeholders to assess public health data and reports from counties, the continent and other parts of the world.The working visit took the delegation to the Ministry of Health for talks with the Minister and Deputy Minister of Health.Meanwhile, the delegation returned to NPHIL later in the day and also met with CDC Cooperative Agreement (CoAg) Partners to conduct an overview of partners’ activities in support of CDC Liberia’s Global Health Security Agenda (GHSA) work plan.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Health Minister announces improvement in TB treatment

first_imgThe recently-concluded Andean Group of countries forum held in Lima, Peru heard that Guyana was currently winning the war against tuberculosis (TB).This announcement was made by Minister within the Public Health Ministry, Dr Karen Cummings.The forum heard that in spite of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) causing a spike in the number of TB cases dealt with last year, the National Tuberculosis Control Programme (NTP) and the National AIDS Programme Secretariat (NAPS) were working round the clock to heighten the Isoniazid Preventative Therapy in citizens living with the deadly disease.Minister within the Public Health Ministry, Dr Karen Cummings addresses the conferenceMinister Cummings also informed the Andean forum that the best initiative implemented has been the provision of nutritious drink and food hampers. This is since the NTP began effecting a number of enablers and incentive initiatives in 2005. These initiatives seek to not only boost the health of patients suffering from the disease but to foster adherence to treatment.“The case notification rate over the past five years decreased from 92 per 100,000 in 2012 to 70 per 100,000 in 2017. This is a good indication as TB has been on the decline significantly in key populations, namely the prisoners, children and elderly,” Dr Cummings stated.She highlighted the improvement of the TB treatment success rates since 2005. The rates, which were just under 50 per cent in 2005, have skyrocketed to 78 per cent, according to the most recently available national figures. This improvement is as a result of the implementation of the Directly Observed Short Course Treatment (DOTS) in Guyana. However, the national rate is still below the target for the World Health Organisation (WHO) END TB Strategy 2025 of 90 per cent.Dr Cummings said while the country’s strategy was to addresses social protection, poverty alleviation and actions on other determinants of the contagious TB disease, “Guyana will continue exploring ways to enhance the socioeconomic conditions of less fortunate TB patients by implementing ‘more robust initiatives’, which will target Pillar 2 of the country’s “END TB STRATEGY”, which are Bold Policies and Supportive Systems.”The event, which was organised to help complement the functioning of, and assist in capacity building among national TB laboratories, also focused on strengthening the technical and administrative capacity of the three supranational reference laboratories in the Americas located in Argentina, Chile and Mexico, and fortify the national laboratory networks of the 20 countries of the Americas through technical and managerial skills-building.While addressing the meeting, Dr Nila Heredia, Executive Secretary of the Andean Health Organisation ORAS-CONHU, noted that resistance to first and second level treatment of tuberculosis continued to be a major public health concern around the world.“This space will give routes that allow us as integration agencies to contribute to this struggle,” he said, stressing the importance of having the presidency of MERCOSUR Health; the Executive Secretariat of Council of Ministers of Health of Central America (COMISCA) and the General Directorate of South American Institute of Government in Health (ISAGS) of UNASUR which are integrating mechanisms together with the ORAS-CONHU, which are expected to work with the same mandate of the presidents and contribute to the elimination of tuberculosis globally.Also speaking on the need to strengthen the laboratory network and integration of the ORAS–CONHU was Vice Minister of Health of Peru, Dr Percy Montes. “This meeting means a stop along the way to see how far we have progressed on the issue of tuberculosis, what we are going to do together, what are the challenges and challenges that we as a State have to face in the future,” he noted while expressing that the forum would bear many results in the field of improving diagnostic capacity for laboratories.last_img read more

Serrano looks to make history

first_imgThe Serrano High School boys basketball team has made plenty of history in recent years, winning three consecutive Mojave River League championships. Beginning this week, the Diamondbacks can try to re-write the history books a little more. Following an opening bye, it plays the winner of Banning and Nogales in the second round. Nogales has already beaten Serrano this season. “Nogales gave us one of our three losses,” Browning said. “We played them in the first round of the El Rancho Tournament and they hit a ton of 3s. I think the fact that we’ve lost to them will keep us from looking ahead.” Serrano is led by the University of University of Penn-bound Harrison Gaines (20 ppg), Durrell Norman (16 ppg) and James Tonic (13 ppg). The only other county team that is seeded No. 1 is De Anza League champion Twentynine Palms (24-2), led by sophomore Montreal Harris. The Wildcats have an opening bye and will play the winner of Hillcrest Christian and Mesrobian at home on Friday night in a D4-A second-round game. Prior to the 2004-2005 season, Serrano hadn’t won a league title in 20 years. Now, Serrano (23-3) has won three in a row. Coach Mike Browning’s team enters the CIF-Southern Section Division III-A playoffs seeded No. 1. The Diamondbacks have never gotten past the second round of the playoffs. It’s no easy road for Serrano, though. center_img The other top-four seeded county boys teams are Colony, which is seeded third in D2-AA, and Ontario Christian and Hesperia Christian, which are seeded second and third, respectively, in D4-AA. Colony is the defending section champion, but has been without star Stedman Merritt for several games for reasons which coach Jerry De Fabiis has not disclosed. Another county team that may not be at full strength for its first playoff game is San Gorgonio. The Spartans play Wednesday against Murrieta Valley in a D2-AA wild-card game. However, the bulk of San Gorgonio’s starting lineup – including star Alex Jacobs – did not suit up for the San Andreas League finale against Arroyo Valley, which the Spartans lost 70-39. San Gorgonio coach Ty Stockham issued a “no comment” when asked why so many key players were missing. Asked Sunday night about the status of the missing players, San Gorgonio athletic director Matt Maeda said he “did not think” the absent players would return. Added Maeda: “I think the (junior varsity-dominated) team you saw Friday night will be the team you see play on Wednesday.” Redlands, the Citrus Belt League champions and winners of 18 of its last 19 games, hosts the San Gorgonio-Murrieta Valley winner on Friday. If given his druthers, Terriers coach Brad Scott would like a better draw. “We’re seeded fifth, but it’s no big blessing, because those are two good teams,” Scott said. “But we have to beat everyone to go anywhere anyway, so we’re not totally angry at the draw. We’re happy to be seeded fifth and to be playing at home in the first round.” Colony (21-6) hosts the San Bernardino-Great Oak winner in D2-AA first-round play on Friday night. In D4-AA play, No. 2-seeded Ontario Christian (20-5) hosts the Sage Hill-Redlands Adventist winner on Friday night in second-round play while and No. 3-seeded Hesperia Christian (19-4) hosts the Desert Chapel-Mountain View winner on Friday night in second-round play. Drawing top seeds on the girls’ side are Miller (25-2) in D2-AA and Ayala (24-3) in D2-A. “Ever since the CIF polls have come out, we’ve been No. 1, so nothing has changed,” Miller coach Mel Wilkins said. “We’re excited about being seeded first and we hope we can adhere to it.” Miller will open at home against the winner of the St. Bonaventure-Los Alamitos wild-card game, while Ayala opens Saturday at home against Empire at-large team Katella. Cajon (26-0) is seeded third in D2-A, two slots lower than Ayala. The Cowgirls open Saturday at home against Golden No. 3 team Quartz Hill. “We’ve been ranked there (third) all year, so it’s what I expected,” Cajon coach Mark Lehman said. “I think it’s a good place for us and a fair ranking.” Other top-four seeded county teams are Colony (14-12), which is seeded third in D3-A; and Arrowhead Christian (21-5), which is seeded second in D4-AA. Arrowhead Christian has an opening-round bye and will play the Bermuda Dunes Desert Christian-Cerritos Whitney winner on Saturday in the second round. “We’ve been ranked second all season and so I’m not disappointed,” ACA coach Barbara Grainge said. “We have an opening-round bye and play at home on Saturday night, so that’s good.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Univision’s sale to investor group complete

first_imgUnivision operates two broadcast networks, Univision and TeleFutura, as well as the cable channel Galavision. The company also owns and operates 62 television stations and 69 radio stations. Univision Communications Inc., the nation’s largest Spanish-language broadcaster, has completed its sale to an investor group. The closing of the $12.3 billion sale to Broadcast Media Partners means the company will become private and its shares will cease trading on the New York Stock Exchange by the end of Thursday. The sale cleared its final hurdle Tuesday when the Federal Communications Commission approved the deal after the company agreed to a record $24 million fine for violating rules that require broadcasters to air at least three hours per week of educational shows for children. The agreement to sell the company to a consortium of investors that includes Saban Capital Group, Madison Dearborn Partners, Providence Equity Partners, Texas Pacific Group and Thomas H. Lee Partners was first announced last June. Univision shareholders approved the offer, valued at $36.25 per share in cash, last September. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Teen killed in head-on crash

first_img 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! GRANADA HILLS — A teenager was killed when his speeding car crossed into oncoming traffic and collided with two other vehicles, officials said Sunday. The unidentified 17-year-old was speeding southbound on Corbin Avenue about 10:55 p.m. Saturday when he lost control of his 2002 Pontiac Grand Am and crossed into the northbound lanes, authorities said. He crashed into two other cars, whose occupants suffered minor injuries, officials said. The boy was transported to Northridge Hospital Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead.last_img

Palace new boy backed after Arsenal debut

first_img1 Pape Souare Mile Jedinak says the Crystal Palace squad is rallying round January signing Pape Souare to help him settle in south London.The Senegal defender joined from Lille last month and made his Premier League debut in the 2-1 defeat to Arsenal on Saturday.“He’s had another week under his belt with the lads and he is getting more comfortable around the squad so I’m looking forward to seeing him out there on the pitch again,” Palace captain Jedinak said.“You welcome everyone with open arms and he knows that we’re here to help get the best out of him. We’ve seen what he has to offer and hopefully he can build on that.”last_img


first_imgEaragail Arts Festival has partnered with Belfast Film Festival to bring back the extremely popular Drive-In at Ards Forest Park.Taking place over two nights, The Drive-In presents family adventure classic The Goonies on Thursday, 24th July. The screening on Friday, 25th July is the horror film Evil Dead 2, which was decided by members of the public who voted for their preferred film on the Earagail Arts Festival Facebook page.Gates open from 7.30pm each night, with the film starting at 10.00pm. €25 per car (max 5 people per car).Paul Brown, Festival Director told Donegal Daily, “It’s been three years since the last Drive-In at Ards Forest Park and such has been the demand for these great family events that we’re bringing back two nights of drive-in movies in the beautiful surroundings of Ards Forest Park.“We’re grateful to Belfast Film Festival for partnering with us on this very special event. Damien Connor of the Belfast Film Festival said, “It’s great to team up with EAF for the first time, we like what they do and are very pleased to be part of their festival.“Like us, they love to show films to people in unusual and exciting locations, giving the audience a different cinematic experience.Places are allocated on a first come first served basis.Patrons should note that FM radio is essential – if the car radio does not receive an FM frequency signal, drivers should bring a portable radio with them to be able to receive the film dialogue to their car.Access only to car park via main park entrance from 7.30pm. (follow signs N56 to / from Letterkenny / Dunfanaghy).No vans permitted and MPVs, 4x4s and Jeeps will be parked at the rear of the car park to ensure visibility of the screen from smaller vehicles. Earagail Arts Festival asks that all patrons co-operate fully with stewards and staff and respect the ecology of the park by using bins and waste disposal provided.For full details on the Earagail Arts programme visit Earagail Arts Festival is funded by The Arts Council of Ireland, Fáilte Ireland and Donegal County Council.DDTV: EARAGAIL ARTS FESTIVAL BRING BACK THE DRIVE-IN AT ARDS FOREST PARK was last modified: June 25th, 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:Ards ForestBusinessDrive-InEaragail Arts FestivalEntertainmentnewslast_img read more

Tough call on who wins local pole position

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREBlues bury Kings early with four first-period goals Ron Hornaday Jr., the former Saugus Speedway champ from Palmdale, won the Truck Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway, his first since 2002. It also added to his series record win total, making it 27 victories for the two-time Truck Series champ. Valencia’s Bryan Herta won his first IRL race since 2003 at Michigan International Speedway. Herta was the last of the four Andretti Green Racing drivers to win a race this year. It was his second career victory on the IRL. M.K. Kanke of Frazier Park won the Southwest Series race at Irwindale Speedway for his first win since 2002. It put him second in career wins on the Southwest Series with 20, one behind Rick Carelli. Each win had historical significance. Each ended years’ long winless streaks for the drivers. But trying to rank them is a difficult process. Hornaday’s win re-established him as the best driver ever to take a seat on the Truck Series. When he left the series as a full-time driver in 1999, he did so as leader in wins with 26. Jack Sprague is the next closest on the career win list with 25. He won the Truck Series race at Texas Motor Speedway in June, his only win of the year. Hornaday spent five years away from the Truck Series as a full-time driver and no other driver passed his mark. Until somebody does, Hornaday will continue to be the best driver in the Truck Series. Herta joined his teamates in what may have been the most successful race team of drivers ever assembled. There are some Roush Racing fans who would disagree, but it’s hard to argue with the numbers the four Andretti Green Racing drivers put up. They won 11 of the 17 IRL races with teammate Dan Wheldon becoming the first IRL driver to win the series championship and the Indianapolis 500 in the same season. But the Andretti Green Racing dominance was best illustrated at the Grand Prix of St. Petersburg in Florida in April. Herta won the pole and the four Andretti Green Racing drivers, Herta, Wheldon, Tony Kanaan and Dario Franchitti, finished 1-2-3-4 in the race. The Michigan race was the highlight of the year for Herta, though. He won the pole and the race at Michigan, but more importantly proved that he belonged with the group of drivers that went on to win more than half of the races in the series. By the time Kanke is done racing, he should own every record on the Southwest Series, except for perhaps championships. He is already the series money leader, with more than $400,000 in career winnings, second in career poles and second in career wins. Through all his success over the years, Kanke has never won a series championship. And it’s not really a pressing matter for him. He would rather win races than championships and before he decides to stop racing, he should hold the record for victories. His win at Irwindale Speedway was his only one of the year. But it was a timely win. He spent the better part of 2003 and 2004 racing part time with little chance of winning races. With a full-time ride in 2005, Kanke became a contender again and looks like he will have a strong team for at least the next couple of years. Ranking these three races creates a dilemma. But here is how they shake out: 1. Hornaday’s win at Atlanta. 2. Kanke’s win at Irwindale. 3. Herta’s win at Michigan. Perhaps next year one of these guys can win more than once and make ranking their performances a little easier. Tim Haddock covers motor sports for the Daily News. He can be reached at (818) 713-3715 or 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! When it comes to picking the most impressive moment of the 2005 auto racing season for Santa Clarita-area drivers, three races come to mind: The NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Atlanta Motor Speedway on March 18. The Indy Racing League race at Michigan International Speedway on July 31. The NASCAR Elite Division, Southwest Series, race at Irwindale Speedway on Aug. 6. last_img read more