January 17, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgOSG petition a ‘clear sign’ of gov’t bid to block ABS-CBN franchise renewal — solon But he is even more elated with how his teammates stepped up to fill the void he left.“I’ve always had belief in everyone,” he told reporters in the din of celebration at Smart Araneta Coliseum on Friday night.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAllen Durham chews out Meralco: Everybody played like sh*tSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSThirdy Ravena gets‍‍‍ offers from Asia, Australian ball clubs“They were tremendous, you know,” he said of his teammates, who finished off top-seeded TNT in six games, capped a 102-90 decision. “We needed all of that.”“Whether it was one second, one minute or big minutes—everyone filled a void,” he said. WATCH: Robredo repacks relief goods with ‘mocha’ behind her Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Norwood, Aussies looking forward to trouble-free friendly MANILA, Philippines—Marcio Lassiter is over the moon after San Miguel Beer’s latest championship.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Lassiter hurt his left knee during the Beermen’s twice-to-win stand against NorthPort in the quarters. Shortly after his diagnosis—an MCL sprain—he was ruled out for six weeks, including the Finals.The void he left looked even more gaping as his marksmanship shooting was sorely missed against a team that lived—and died—by the three.The three-pointer emerged as a weapon of choice that shaped the race-to-four series. San Miguel and TNT split the first two games all thanks to their long-distance shooting before the Beermen finally expanded their rotation and made the most out of Christian Standhardinger and Terrence Romeo.Lassiter, San Miguel’s premier sniper, heaped extra praise on Romeo, his younger teammate who he said greatly influenced the outcome of the series.“I’m proud of him, man. He played so well. He had some great moments for us, especially in our Game 5. He came in, especially in that second quarter, made a lot of points to kinda keep us in the game,” he said.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Coco Gauff vs. Venus Williams in 1st round of Australian Opencenter_img View comments ONE: Gina Iniong eager to showcase her best in 1st fight of 2020 Roger Federer: Rafael Nadal, Novak Djokovic ‘will win more’ BREAKING: DOJ indicts ex-PNP chief Albayalde for graft Lacson on Albayalde, ‘ninja cops’ indictment: The law has a ‘very long memory’ Robredo hits Mocha over false post: Why let gov’t pay a fake news purveyor? “Throughout this whole series, he was really a huge spark plug for us. He really put a stamp on [Game 6], too,” Lassiter said of Romeo, who that night was crowned Honda Finals Most Valuable Player.Lassiter said his knee injury did not dampen the joy he felt for his team’s success. “I’m still a part of it just as much as everyone else is. And it’s just a great honor to even be in this position,” he said.“It’s really a testament to how hard we work,” he added, stressing on how the Beermen climbed from the No. 7 seed to the top. Read Nextlast_img read more

January 15, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_img(Sta Rosa Multi-Purpose Gym)ADVERTISEMENT 3 p.m.—Philippines vs Vietnam5 p.m.—Thailand vs IndonesiaFEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4Before a hometown crowd that sometimes borders on the fanatical, the Philippine women’s team will try to score a medal in the second leg of the Asean Volleyball Grand Prix that would quantify the popularity the sport is enjoying these days.The Nationals, made up of marquee names from at least nine clubs from the rival Philippine Superliga and Premier Volleyball League, open against Vietnam in the 3 p.m. game at Sta. Rosa Multi-Purpose Gym in Laguna on Friday as Alyssa Valdez marks her return to national team duty after missing the first leg in Thailand. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LOOK: Taal Volcano island 2 days after eruption Alyssa Valdez stays positive despite PH loss in volleyball opener PLAY LIST 01:14Alyssa Valdez stays positive despite PH loss in volleyball opener00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:04Daybreak as smoke, ash billows from Taal volcano01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown Taal Volcano’s lava fountain weakens, but Phivolcs says it’s not sign of slowing down Taal Volcano eruption: House to develop rehab plan for Batangas, Cavite, Laguna No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Negros Occidental gov’t, church call for prayers for safety of Taal evacuees ‘People evacuated on their own’center_img Fortunately for the host, Vietnam won’t have its high-scoring team captain, Tran Thi Thanh Thuy, who unloaded 25 points against the Philippines during the first leg in Thailand.But opposite hitter Dang Thu Kim Thanh and middle blocker Tran Thi Bich Thuy will be around to get the Filipino defense busy.The Philippines outlasted Vietnam in the first leg, 25-21, 22-25, 25-21, 15-25, 15-12, to snatch bronze.Saturday’s assignment will be lot tougher as the Philippines takes on full-force Thailand, which has won every SEA Games gold medal since 2005.The country snatched a set against the World Grand Prix regular before bowing, 25-13, 25-21, 23-25, 25-20.This will be the last time the Nationals will play in an official tournament before the biennial meet where it is hoping to finally land medal after lording over the sport and end decades of heartache dating back to the late 1980s.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Team Philippines finished third a couple of weeks back in Nakhon Ratchasima, which Valdez missed because of an ankle sprain sustained days before the team left.Admission is free and there will be a livestream for fans to follow the meet, which is essentially a dry run for the actual Southeast Asian Games competitions slated late next month.While Valdez returns, the Nationals will be without prolific scorer Kalei Mau, who is recovering from a calf injury, and setter Alohi Robins-Hardy, another Fil-American who couldn’t obtain a Philippine passport on time.Jia Morado and Jasmine Nabor are left as the team’s setters for the four-nation meet.A third Fil-American, Iris Tolenada, will only join the team in the Japan training camp later this month.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ View comments Francis Kong, Jason Magbanua headline ‘The School for the Passionate, New Bold U 2020’ LOOK: Chilling Adventures of Sabrina Part 3 takes you straight to hell with a Music Video and First Look-Images Ceres nears title, wants to end season undefeated LATEST STORIESlast_img read more

January 15, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgPhivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Sangiao, who traces his fighting roots to kickboxing and tae kwon do, brought gold to the Philippines as a wushu athlete in the games’ 2001 iteration in Malaysia, and then as a coach a decade later in Jakarta.“I’ll be taking care of the all-around aspect of preparations,” the soft-spoken mentor told the Inquirer. “The other coaches will be focusing on fists and feet.”“We don’t know yet the caliber of our opponents, but we’ve been preparing the athletes well,” Sangiao said of the team’s training which has been in full swing since October.The Nationals have had training sessions in Taiwan and Cambodia before moving to La Trinidad in Benguet.Sangiao admitted to having jitters leading a kickboxing squad for the first time. Fortunately, Iniong, Olsim, and Saclag all trained under him, giving him relative ease in coachingADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. The 40-year-old mentor has produced champions in Asian mixed martial arts promotions like ONE Championship and Brave FC, but Chan stressed that’s not Sangiao’s biggest asset.“In Philippine basketball, you somedbody like Chot Reyes who [is revered]. Over at combat sports, we have Mark Sangiao,” he added.“When we were putting together the coaching staff, we felt like we have found a leader in him,” Chan said.“Who wouldn’t want to be coached by Mark Sangiao?”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next FILE – Team Lakay during its fruitful reign with four fighters holding four belts. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netChoosing Mark Sangiao as one of Philippine kickboxing team’s coaches was such an easy decision federation’s leadership to make.But such was not a move solely hinged on the mentor’s illustrious career as a fighter, neither on his track record as a kingmaker.ADVERTISEMENT Andray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai Sotto View comments 400 evacuees from Taal eruption take refuge in Mt. Banahaw LATEST STORIEScenter_img GALLERY: Ateneo clinches UAAP 3-peat in historic fashion DSWD Bicol donates P1.5M worth of food packs for Taal eruption evacuees Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee ‘People evacuated on their own’ Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:11SEA GAMES 2019: PH’s Nesthy Petecio boxing featherweight final (HIGHLIGHTS)08:07Athletes treated to a spectacle as SEA Games 2019 officially ends06:27SEA Games 2019: No surprises as Gilas Pilipinas cruises to basketball gold05:02SEA Games 2019: Philippines clinches historic gold in women’s basketball05:21Drama in karate: Tsukii ‘very sad’ over coach’s bullying, cold shoulder03:24PH’s James Palicte boxing light welterweight final (HIGHLIGHTS) MOST READ 2 village execs nabbed in Bohol buy-bust “He typifies this certain kind of discipline,” Samahang Kickboxing ng Pilipinas secretary-general Atty. Wharton Chan told the Inquirer on Thursday.“He exudes this kind of confidence that we want to tap into,” he added.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4Sangiao joins a crop of decorated mentors in Glenn Mondol and Olympian Donald Geisler in preparing the Philippine’s eight-man contingent set to see action in the Southeast Asian Games here next week.Making up the squad are Ruel Catalan, Karol Maguire, Rex De Lara, Jomar Balaguid, Jean Claude Saclag, and Jerry Olsim; along with women’s bets Renz Daquel and Gina Iniong who will be competing from Dec. 6 through 10 at Cuneta Astrodome in Pasay.last_img read more

January 15, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgTrending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:11SEA GAMES 2019: PH’s Nesthy Petecio boxing featherweight final (HIGHLIGHTS)08:07Athletes treated to a spectacle as SEA Games 2019 officially ends06:27SEA Games 2019: No surprises as Gilas Pilipinas cruises to basketball gold05:02SEA Games 2019: Philippines clinches historic gold in women’s basketball05:21Drama in karate: Tsukii ‘very sad’ over coach’s bullying, cold shoulder03:24PH’s James Palicte boxing light welterweight final (HIGHLIGHTS) ‘People evacuated on their own’ “They are the best players who have experienced international competitions. They will go with me to the Philippines,” said Chung.“I think that the target of a gold is either our challenge or a strong force for us. We will try our best to complete this heavy task to defend our crown,” he said.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4The team has just finished a 10-day intensive training camp in Japan and Chung was pleased with the progress of his players.“It was a useful training camp for us. Apart from training, we had three friendly matches which helped me to perfect our tactics and physique,” he said. Andray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai Sotto Phivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIES 2 village execs nabbed in Bohol buy-bust MOST READ Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers fleecenter_img Việt Nam, who won the AFF Championship in August, are in Group B and will play Thailand in the first match on November 26 and then Indonesia three days later at Binan Stadium in Laguna. Group A gathers Myanmar, Malaysia and the hosts.Teams will compete in a round-robin format and the two best will advance to the semi-finals. The final is scheduled for December 9.“Teams at the competition are not strangers. But recently they have received strong support for the SEA Games, especially the Philippines, who have two-thirds of their line-up made up of oversea Filipinos.“They competed really well at the recent regional championship.“Myanmar and Indonesia have shown a different level compared to the past.ADVERTISEMENT Việt Nam coach Mai Đức Chung and his players in a training in preparation for their SEA Games tournament. Photo toquoc.vnHANOI–Vietnam’s women’s national football team has left for the Philippines to defend their Southeast Asian Games title.Head coach Mai Đức Chung yesterday finalized his 20-strong squad that includes two goalkeepers, six defenders, nine midfielders and three strikers.ADVERTISEMENT No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist DSWD Bicol donates P1.5M worth of food packs for Taal eruption evacuees 400 evacuees from Taal eruption take refuge in Mt. Banahaw Neymar’s PSG return set to test coach’s skills “2019 World Cup participating Thailand is still our No 1 opponent.“After losing to us in the AFF Championship on home turf, they said they would invest more on the team to take their top position back at this Games.“Thailand has a South Korean expert while other teams have foreign coaches in their coaching staff,” said Chung.“I think our task is really difficult, requiring great effort. We respect all of them and will work on plans to ‘solve’ each of them,” said Chung.The defending champions will receive VNĐ400 million (US$17,300) for each win, according to Phạm Thanh Hùng, manager of the women’s football team. He said the bonus would be much bigger if they could take the gold home.Two years ago in Malaysia, women’s football featured only five teams, competing in a round-robin format. Việt Nam triumphed after taking top place on goal difference over Thailand.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next View commentslast_img read more

January 15, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgOn Sunday, those cracks turned into a gulf.Tsukii doubled down on her account about getting bullied by her coach, who she said invalidated her gold medal triumph in the -50-kilogram women’s kumite event of karate.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4On her social post and during interviews, Tsukii did not name the coach. But the karate federation lists Turkish former world champion Okay Arpa as its head coach.And Arpa virtually admitted to being alluded to when he fired back at the 28-year-old Filipino-Japanese. MOST READ Taal Volcano’s lava fountain weakens, but Phivolcs says it’s not sign of slowing down Tsukii thus saw action in the World Karate Federation Premier League to shore up her chances of gaining a slot in the Olympics in Tokyo next year.“Before I left for Madrid, he started bullying me,” said Tsukii. “After I came back here, going to the SEA Games, he never talked to me, never looked at my face.”I spend my money on my competitions. I don’t buy a car, I don’t buy a house, buy candies or something. No. I spend it all to be strong,” she said. “But he still says I’m selfish.”Arpa said he is focused on the current SEA Games and will air his side after the biennial meet.“It’s maybe not the correct time,” he said. “Maybe because there’s a SEA Games push. But really, I want to talk.”Teary-eyed, Tsukii admitted keeping all of this to herself, as she fears her coach would also go after her teammates.“I don’t want to risk my teammates, that’s also why I don’t tell the names of the teammates who worry (about me),” she revealed. “He might attack the others that’s why I kept quiet.”“I think it’s very important [to bring this out in the open] … we’re also people. We have minds, we have hearts,” she said.“Even if we look strong, over here,” she added, pointing at her heart, “we are just like [other] people.” INQ Philippines’ Junna Tsukii (red) celebrates after defeating Vietnam’s Dinh Thi Huong (blue) to claim the gold medal of the women’s Karatedo-50 kg of the 30th South East Asian Games 2019. INQUIRER PHOTO/ Sherwin VardeleonMANILA, Philippines–All Junna Tsukii wanted was to be as ready as she could be for her swan song.But that was where cracks began to show in her relationship with her coach.ADVERTISEMENT SEA Games: Christiana Means finally strikes gold in skateboarding Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee Thailand reports case of coronavirus from China Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist LATEST STORIES Microsoft ends free Windows 7 security updates on Tuesday Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Leonardo DiCaprio, Taika Waititi, other stars react to Oscar nominations NFA assures ample rice supply in ashfall, eruption-affected areas Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:11SEA GAMES 2019: PH’s Nesthy Petecio boxing featherweight final (HIGHLIGHTS)08:07Athletes treated to a spectacle as SEA Games 2019 officially ends06:27SEA Games 2019: No surprises as Gilas Pilipinas cruises to basketball gold05:02SEA Games 2019: Philippines clinches historic gold in women’s basketball05:21Drama in karate: Tsukii ‘very sad’ over coach’s bullying, cold shoulder03:24PH’s James Palicte boxing light welterweight final (HIGHLIGHTS) “I am strict to everyone,” Arpa told the Inquirer. “I tell her to come here Dec. 3 and she comes Dec. 5, 6. You play for the SEA Games, you play for country, not personality.”Arpa has drawn a lot of ire on social media after Tsukii made her post public. Commenters egged Tsukii to not mind the coach because he is “a foreigner anyway.”“People don’t know about whole situation,” Arpa said. “I am not born here but in my heart I’m Filipino. I work 24 hours, seven days a week for the Philippines.”Tsukii said the problems started when she wanted to fly to Madrid to help her earn Olympic qualifying points.“He didn’t allow me to go to Madrid. He said the Federation, the (Philippine Sports Commission) said so,” said Tsukii. “So I asked the Federation and the PSC. The federation gave me permission.”ADVERTISEMENT View comments ‘People evacuated on their own’last_img read more

January 15, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgÁlvaro Morata and Saúl Ñíguez scored a goal each in the second half to lift Atlético back to fourth place, the last qualification spot for the Champions League.Diego Simeone’s team had won only one of its last six league games.Tenth-place Osasuna had lost one of its last seven matches in the league.ATHLETIC STALLSAthletic Bilbao was held by Eibar to a 0-0 home draw in a match between two Basque Country teams.It was the second winless game in a row for sixth-place Athletic, which hadn’t been held scoreless in four straight league games.Eibar, sitting in 16th place, had lost four straight league matches.LEVANTE REBOUNDSA late winner by North Macedonia midfielder Enis Bardhi gave Levante a 2-1 win at Granada, ending the team’s two-game losing streak.Bardhi scored with a shot from outside the area in the 89th minute. No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Barcelona was expected to file a formal complaint to the Spanish soccer federation over the non-call, which came after Real Sociedad defender Diego Llorente appeared to pull down Gerard Piqué by his jersey in stoppage time.Neither the referee nor video review thought there was enough to award a penalty. Barcelona was especially upset because Real Sociedad’s first goal came on a penalty awarded in a similar situation after Sergio Busquets grabbed Llorente’s jersey in the first half.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4“The one on Gerard was clearer than mine,” Busquets said. “If the referee saw the first one, he had to see that one as well. I think he saw it, but didn’t want to make the call.”Spanish powerhouses Madrid and Barcelona will meet for the first time this season in a match postponed from October because of a separatist rally in the Catalan capital. Mills hits winner, Spurs outlast Suns in record-setting OT Thailand reports case of coronavirus from China Barcelona’s Gerard Pique, center left, congratulates Lionel Messi after he served teammate Luis Suarez to score their side’s second goal during the Spanish La Liga soccer match between Real Sociedad and Barcelona, at Anoeta stadium, in San Sebastian, Spain, Saturday, Dec. 14, 2019. (AP Photo/Alvaro Barrientos)MADRID — A disputed decision not to award a late penalty may have cost Barcelona the Spanish league lead entering Wednesday’s “clásico” against Real Madrid.Barcelona was held to a 2-2 draw at Real Sociedad on Saturday, giving Madrid a chance to go into the midweek match at Camp Nou Stadium with a two-point lead if it beats Valencia on Sunday.ADVERTISEMENT Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:31Taal volcano ejects smoke and ash, villagers flee02:24Taal Volcano now on Alert Level 4, thousands evacuated01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown01:54MMDA deploys rescue team to Batangas following Taal eruption Leonardo DiCaprio, Taika Waititi, other stars react to Oscar nominations View comments Barcelona recovered with two fast breakaways, one late in the first half and another soon after the break.Griezmann equalized in the 38th by flicking the ball past goalkeeper Álex Remiro from inside the area. Griezmann, who played nine seasons with Real Sociedad, didn’t celebrate his goal.“I have a lot of respect for those who have given me everything,” said Griezmann, who has scored three goals in his last five matches.Suárez put the visitors ahead in the 49th with a strike into the open net after a short pass by Messi.The hosts equalized in the 62nd with a close-range shot by striker Alexander Isak after Barcelona goalkeeper Marc-André ter Stegen couldn’t fully clear a cross.Oyarzabal had also scored the last time Real Sociedad beat Barcelona, in a league match back in 2016.Barcelona had won seven straight matches against Real Sociedad in all competitions.Real Sociedad has won only one of its last five league matches. It had lost its last five league games against Barcelona.ATLÉTICO MOVES UPAtlético Madrid beat Osasuna 2-0 at home to end a three-match winless streak in the league. LATEST STORIEScenter_img Taal Volcano’s lava fountain weakens, but Phivolcs says it’s not sign of slowing down Microsoft ends free Windows 7 security updates on Tuesday “We don’t know whether we will still be leaders or not, that’s out of our hands now,” Busquets said. “But we will enter the match with good momentum. We have been improving and we’ll be playing at home.”Barcelona coach Ernesto Valverde didn’t rest any of his top players, using Lionel Messi, Luis Suárez and Antoine Griezmann in the attack. Messi didn’t play in the team’s Champions League match at Inter Milan on Tuesday.Barcelona, which had won nine of its last 10 league games, was outplayed during most of the match at Reale Arena. Fifth -place Sociedad creating most of the scoring chances and restrained Barcelona, which was in control for short periods of the game but couldn’t capitalize on its chances to seal the victory.“We are upset despite a draw against a team like Barcelona,” Real Sociedad coach Imanol Alguacil said. “We did more than they did, we could have taken the three points.”Mikel Oyarzabal opened the scoring for the hosts by converting a 12th-minute penalty kick after Busquets was caught grabbing Llorente inside the area.ADVERTISEMENT ‘People evacuated on their own’ Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. NFA assures ample rice supply in ashfall, eruption-affected areas Levante moved to 11th, one point behind Granada.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextlast_img read more

January 14, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgHeads of Government of the Caribbean Community (Caricom) will meet in Guyana for their 37th Regular Meeting on 4-6 July, 2016, and as expected some of the most pressing issues currently affecting the Region will take centre stage.As stated by Caricom, in the search for opportunities and regional solutions to challenges, the Meeting will advance matters pertaining to regional security – economic and otherwise; and the social wellbeing of the approximately 16 million people who make up the Caribbean Community.Certainly, issues relating to the number of threats the Region continues to face in relation to its financial and economic stability will dominate the discussions; chief among these are the threats posed by international banks limiting or terminating their relationships with regional financial institutions, and the yet to be determined implications of the British decision to leave the European Union (EU), a key partner in the Community’s development.As it relates to Brexit, some experts have already warned of the potential negative effects this latest development could have on the Region’s economies; and stakeholders will be anxiously waiting to see how the regional grouping will tackle the issue. For example, what policy decisions leaders will make that will seek to ensure that the impact on the region’s economies are minimised as far as possible.Already we are seeing concerns being raised, ranging from a potential drop in arrivals in tourist dependent Member States such as Saint Lucia and Barbados where the UK is a major source market, to a decrease in development assistance and possible effects on trade agreements the Region has with the EU.Only a few days ago, at a University of the West Indies (UWI) forum organised to discuss the impact of Brexit, Vice Chancellor Sir Hilary Beckles offered some useful recommendations that Carciom leaders could explore during their two-day meeting here. Beckles underscored the need for Caricom to move as a matter of urgency to reinvent the scenario post emancipation, which saw Caribbean indigenous people networking freely across the region. He suggested that a Task Force be set up immediately, with the involvement of UWI, to research, monitor and report on the weekly developments that will take place over the next two years. For him, it is necessary that leaders in government and the private sector have access to factual, detailed information on an ongoing basis in order to guide their thinking and decisions.Additionally, he recommended that Caricom set up a Regional Research and Development Fund in order to facilitate innovation within the private sector that is required to strengthen entrepreneurship. He noted that the regional economy is at a stage where it can only compete at the level of innovation, and it is failing to do so because of inadequate research and development within production.He argued that the region: “Must also strengthen the conversation around and renegotiate the various agreements that can strengthen and expand the CARIFORUM (EU Economic Partnership Agreement), including pacts negotiated by the African Caribbean and Pacific States (ACP) which the Caribbean has not taken full advantage of over several years and the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC).”Another pressing issue that will no doubt engage the leaders relates to the challenges confronting the Region as a result of de-risking. According to Caricom, the de-risking scenario is that it is unfair, and the predictions about its impact on the Region are dire.Experts have concluded that transfers of remittances, cheque payments, international trade and the facilitation of credit card settlements for local clients are among the areas that have been affected by de-risking. The Caribbean Development Bank (CDB) quoted a November World Bank survey as saying that about 75 per cent of international banks have experienced a reduction in correspondent banking services with the Caribbean being the worst affected.While we are fully aware that these are all complex issues and there are certainly no easy fixes, it would be reasonable to expect regional heads to consider seriously the views and recommendations of the various partners and stakeholders and take the bold decisions which are crucial to resolve them.This is certainly a time when the Region’s leadership will be tested.last_img read more

January 14, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgNine days after today, the 90-day period to hold elections following the successful passage of the no-confidence motion on December 21, 2018 will come to an end. The elections, as mandated by the Constitution, will not be held by that time, and from what is currently playing out in the country’s political sphere, a constitutional crisis will take effect in just over a week. Its avoidance is through a parliamentary extension which must have the agreement of the Opposition. There may still be hope for that.The Leader of the Opposition had indicated his Party’s willingness to support any necessary extension provided that the President was committed to holding the elections and implemented related mechanisms. That has not happened as the President has thrown the responsibility unto the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) – a move some have branded as an abdication of his constitutional responsibility.That, coupled with his firm position of seeking a reversal of the vote by the court, has confirmed the belief that he and his government are only concerned with avoiding the elections in defiance of the Constitution. From all appearances, the Government seems bent on having the elections within its own set time frame with a seeming preference for 2020. In doing so, it is, by its own action, not just pushing the country into a constitutional crisis, but seems willing to expose all to its impact.That will obviously take a toll on Guyana and Guyanese, and will exacerbate as it prolongs. How that will play out and the severity of its impact is anyone’s guess. It could be a case of hoping for the best, but bracing for the worst. What continues to be bothersome is the Government’s continual defence of its position in not accepting what the Constitution demands regarding a successful no-confidence vote. All of its officials who have spoken publicly on the issue have sought to impose a seemingly alien interpretation at the expense of the rule of law.Even more jarring is to see some from the legal fraternity manufacturing interpretations that have strayed from what is enshrined. Reportedly, the Attorney General suggested that the Constitution is wrong with regard to what it specifies in the circumstances of a no-confidence vote. It begs the obvious question: wasn’t it the same Constitution he sought shelter under to advise the Government when it was in Opposition and when it threatened a no-confidence motion against the Donald Ramotar Administration? If, according to the reports, the Constitution is wrong now, how come it wasn’t wrong then?That, along with other scenarios which have played out, is an escapade of convenience to stay in Government. To therefore say these are mere attempts to hold on to power would be a gross understatement. That brings into focus a particular scenario that no one seems to want to talk about. In fairness, this entity alluded to it some time ago. It’s worth a reminder given the current political context.It can be summed up in one question; what would have been the state of play had the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) taken the same position as the Government following a successful no-confidence vote? To some, it may seem a non-issue on the grounds that the Party would have had no option but to abide by the constitutionally-mandated requirements. To others, the PPP dare not challenge what the said Constitution stipulates. For the latter, no efforts, as evident from history, would have been spared to ensure compliance.In other words, the Government, given all it has done thus far to avoid complying with the Constitution, including appealing what the supreme law says, would have vehemently objected to same had the PPP being unwilling to comply. It would have made the country ungovernable as it did in the past.The aftermath of the 1997 elections is a classic example of it creating an ungovernable environment despite the fact that it was not an issue of unconstitutionality but one of dissatisfaction over the results of that election. Eventually, Caricom intervened and fresh elections were held two years before they were due.These are not manufactured scenarios but realities when the Government while in Opposition refused to accept electoral results. During that period of politically- engineered instability and when the nation was on a rebuilding trajectory, innocent people were harmed, properties destroyed, business stagnated, and the economy took a hit as the country’s international image was tarnished. The then Opposition was adamant the Government should be removed and may have done all it could in that regard.Having walked that road, having fought for what it believed to be right then, having ignored the Constitution now on the no-confidence vote and having led the nation to the precipice of a constitutional crisis, the Government seems unconcerned of the potential negative impacts its action could have on all.That same lack of concern could be placed at its feet during the 1997 related period of instability. Many believe that its actions were wrong then and are wrong now. The Government continues to defend its position, a position that many see as defending an illegality which is what it will be after March 21 if no political resolution is found.last_img read more

January 14, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgRecently, there were reports that the Guyana National Broadcasting Authority (GNBA) is considering taking serious sanctions against broadcasters which continually defy the rules for what is deemed responsible broadcasting of information during the elections period.Cleary, the country would want every broadcaster to act responsibly at all times, more especially during the elections period. World history is replete with the dire consequences of irresponsible broadcasting, therefore, in principle, the GNBA’s call for responsible utterances on the nation’s airwaves is sound. However, the manner in which the GNBA seemingly operated over the past three years raises suspicion on its real intent.Some time ago, the Leader of the Opposition, Bharrat Jagdeo, claimed that the Guyana GNBA is targeting broadcasting stations perceived to be anti-Government. He further accused the GNBA of engaging in censorship and for terrorizing broadcast entities it perceives of being unsympathetic towards the APNU/AFC Government.Mr Jagdeo’s position is similar to that of broadcasters who have been cited for broadcast infractions by the GNBA. Some have lamented a draconian approach that directly infringes on freedom of expression and the obligation to inform and educate viewers and listeners alike. This, in no way, suggests a right to broadcast libellous, discriminatory or inciting content.Broadcasters in question are well aware of this and have endeavoured to abide by the GNBA’s broadcast guidelines. However, aspects of the said guidelines are viewed as deliberate measures to aid in the enforcement of censorship. Mr Jagdeo also claimed that some station managers are questioned as to why they cannot find positive things to say about the Government.If that were the case, then it’s extremely worrying since it suggests that the GNBA is allegedly using its authority to force the broadcast of content favourable to the Government. If such actions are indeed meted out to broadcasters, then it becomes a direct assault on freedom of the press and freedom of expression. Therein lies danger since it becomes indicative of the Government seemingly using arms of the State to silence opposing views.In August of 1950, former USA President Harry S Truman said, “Once a government is committed to the principle of silencing the voice of opposition, it has only one way to go, and that is down the path of increasingly repressive measures until it becomes a source of terror to all its citizens and creates a country where everyone lives in fear”.During the period 1964-1992, the then People’s National Congress (PNC) Government unleashed severe measures to stifle the voice of the then People’s Progressive Party (PPP) Opposition and others who opposed it. In the process and among other things, the importation of newsprint for Opposition-ran presses was banned.Some who raised their voices against the regime were beaten and/or incarcerated with some paying with their lives. That’s the terror that President Truman alluded to and the fear it precipitates into the mindsets of the citizenry.Following the rebirth of democracy in 1992 under the PPP/C Government, one would have felt that dark and shameful past was laid to rest. Unfortunately, fears of a growing dictatorship are now being rekindled allegedly aided by actions of the GNBA, as claimed.Noteworthy, the Broadcast Act was amended by the current APNU/AFC Government of which the PNC is the dominant party. One aspect is that broadcasters are mandated to provide one hour of broadcast time to facilitate Government programming under the guise of public service announcements.In principle, no broadcaster is against the airing of pertinent national messages that warn of natural disasters or outbreak of diseases or any other necessary information. However, they oppose the imposition of that hour for the broadcast of Government propaganda and that the choice of the timing can be dictated by the authority.When that is taken into consideration, along with the claim of some station managers being allegedly asked to broadcast content favourable to the Government, it appears that the GNBA is seemingly becoming a conduit for Government’s infringements on freedom of expression. Given that, GNBA’s discharging of its mandate in a consistent, professional and fair manner has unavoidably been questioned.The relevance of the question is within the context of the content of the State media broadcast arms. Aggrieved broadcasters, which have been cited for various infractions, are hard-pressed to see any consistency given some of what is being broadcast on the State media and the apparent free reign Government officials have through it.With that in mind, Mr Jagdeo’s claims of the GNBA’s attempts to censor some broadcast stations drive home that inherent fear as some sections of the media are reportedly in the process of being muzzled.The GNBA has denied the claims while stating it has recorded numerous broadcast infractions for the year so far. In addition, it would have also seized nine broadcast frequencies from three entities, including from a radio station owned and operated by the PPP.These, especially the latter, make it extremely difficult to dismiss the claims of censorship and possibly the terrorizing of broadcast entities. Within that said context, it also makes it difficult to take the GNBA at face value on its intent for responsible broadcast during the upcoming elections period.last_img read more

January 14, 2020 | | Post a Comment

first_imgDear Editor,Please allow me space in your newspaper to highlight an urgent matter which is of utmost importance to the residents of Georgetown.As a newly-elected Councillor, I am publicly calling on all Councillors, the Mayor and Deputy Mayor to begin discussions on conducting a forensic audit of the Municipality of Georgetown at our first statutory meeting on April 11, 2016.The Local Government Elections are over and the Mayor and Councillors have been sworn in for Georgetown so it is time to get down to the serious business of efficiently managing the city’s affairs.Above all other matters, the need for a full-scale forensic audit is paramount and it must be initiated immediately to cover all areas of operation of the municipality of Georgetown. This forensic audit, by necessity, must be performed by an independent and competent external auditor with specific terms of reference to discover the previous modes of operation and the utilisation of the city’s resources. Once the results are reviewed by the Council, we will be in much better position to chart the course for the revitalisation of Georgetown.Many citizens have expressed grave concern about transparency and accountability at City Hall especially with the election of past members of the City Council, including the Mayor and Chairman of the Finance Committee and some of its members who have been part of the administration at City Hall for many years.No one should really object to an external forensic audit if there is nothing to hide especially since everyone seems interested in seeing a revitalised Georgetown.A forensic audit is of vital importance to rebuild public trust and confidence in the competence, operation and overall performance in all areas of city governance. I, along with many of the candidates, had made this call during the campaign leading up to the Local Government Elections. Residents, stakeholders and other interested parties have been calling for an independent audit to be conducted at City Hall for some time now and there are tremendous benefits to be gained from such an undertaking by the newly-elected Councillors and Mayor of Georgetown.The APNU/AFC coalition had taken the same path on its assumption of power to determine how the State’s resources were used. In principle, City Hall must follow the same measures so that the Councillors and Mayor can implement new systems of control in all areas which will result in the provision of a much higher level of accountability, transparency and competency.A forensic audit will discover any misappropriation of the city’s assets, any corruption schemes involving people working for the city and any fraudulent financial statements.Additionally, a forensic audit will allow us to know precisely what assets are owned by the city, all outstanding debts/receivables and liabilities, the human resources disposition and the current financial status of Georgetown.The results of such a forensic audit must be made available to the public for scrutiny and comment.I would also like to see an ethics review which will allow us to determine what is acceptable behaviour for everyone associated with the administration of the municipality of Georgetown and to prevent unethical actions and conflict-of-interest situations.As a new Councillor in the City of Georgetown, I am particularly interested in the control systems used, the human resources component, departmental financial allocations and the use or misuse of the public’s money. We owe it to the people of Georgetown to account for every cent of their money spent.Every effort should be made to bring the municipality of Georgetown in compliance with the Fiscal Management and Accountability Act and to operate in a transparent manner.Thank you.Bishram KuppenCouncillor – PPP/CMunicipality of Georgetownlast_img read more