Contract must be transparent

first_imgParking meter protestsThe United Kingdom High Commissioner, Gregory Quinn, has emphasised that while he has no fundamental problem with parking meters, the process should always be a fully transparent one.He further explained, during a recent interview with the Guyana Times, that citizens who peacefully protested were exercising their democratic right of dissent, and peaceful protests which greeted the implementation of parking meters in Georgetown were demonstrative of Guyana’s strong sense of democracy. “But any parking contract has to be open and transparent and debated and agreed by those in the Council. And I think that’s the fundamental thing, if you’re going to put in place a parking meter process, it has to be something that has gone through the rigors of proper examination,” he stated.British High Commissioner Greg QuinnA scene from one of the weekly protests outside City HallThe protests, which were carried out for four successive weeks from February 3, were held outside City Hall on Regent Street. Protesters manifested opposition to the implementation of the contract signed by Mayor and City Council (M&CC) officials with Smart City Solutions Inc.“The fact that the protests have taken place is actually a wonderful example of the nature of democracy in Guyana. People feel able to go out and protest about something that they disagree with. And protest in a peaceful manner,” the UK envoy said.That, according to High Commissioner Quinn, is a fundamental tenet of any democracy. He noted that civil society has made its views against the parking meters clear and the courts were now involved.Just weeks after the introduction of parking meters in Guyana, citizens had gathered to protest the move. The crowd consisted of parliamentarians, business owners and members of civil society.The Movement Against Parking Meters (MAPM), a recently-formed lobby group, was instrumental in organising the protests. They also came after Georgetown’s Deputy Mayor, Sherod Duncan, who has been vociferous in his opposition to the project, staged a one-man protest outside Bishops’ High School where a parking meter had been installed.The protesters had listed several concerns with the project. Feasibility, transparency and the cost for parking were some of the foremost concerns surrounding the City Council’s new method of taxation.Some had agitated for the immediate removal of the parking meters due to the expenses and the slowdown in commerce which businesses experienced.Others, however, had stated that they were merely requesting a reduction in the cost, as the current rates did not cater for working class citizens and the poor.The first protest had been greeted by pro- parking meter activists. Mayor Patricia Chase Green had also responded to the protesters, who she referred to as “high class”. She had claimed that persons failed to engage the Council on matters concerning the parking meters, and chose various forms of demonstration instead.Supported by the Town Clerk, Royston King, she had highlighted the advantages of the initiative, including the creation of more than 50 jobs. King had labelled the protesters’ actions as “backwards thinking,” stating that the meters would ensure the restoration and development of the country.He further reported that the system employed citizens as street patrol officers and instances of breaches have been eradicated since the installation.Despite the stated intentions of a passive demonstration, chaos had followed as supporters of the parking meter initiative accumulated along the front of the City Hall compound. Activists were accused of partisan intentions and fuelling verbal attacks.last_img read more

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Wijnaldum Liverpool are not focusing on title battle

first_imgLiverpool midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum insists they are focusing on themselves and not on Manchester City’s results ahead of tonight’s game at WolvesAfter 17 games, Jurgen Klopp’s side remains unbeaten with a one-point advantage over City at the top of the Premier League.But Wijnaldum, who impressed in last Sunday’s 3-1 win against Manchester United, says Liverpool are only keeping focus on themselves.And the Dutchman expects a stern challenge from Wolves, who defeated Chelsea 2-1 earlier this month at home.“This season we didn’t think about getting close to City,” Wijnaldum told the club website.divock origi, liverpoolReport: Origi cause Klopp injury concerns George Patchias – September 14, 2019 Divock Origi injury in today’s game against Newcastle is a cause for concern for Jurgen Klopp.Perhaps with one eye on Tuesday’s trip to Italy…“When we were in the future situations [playing after them], or in this case to go four points ahead.“We don’t really think about that, we just want to play the game and try to win the game and then we will see what will happen at the end of the week. We just have to make sure we win our game, that’s the only thing we have to do.“I think Wolves have shown already against the ‘big’ teams that they are a good playing side, especially at home, so it’s going to be a really, really tough game.“We know we have to be 100 per cent concentrated to win that game.”A win tonight at Molineux will move Liverpool four points clear over City, who face Crystal Palace on Saturday.last_img read more

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Modis oneman show triumphs again in state polls

first_imgIndia’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Reuters file photoSensing his party’s drive for votes in India’s most politically prized state had stalled, Prime Minister Narendra Modi cleared his schedule and thrust himself into the heart of the battle.“Our election campaign has hit a roadblock,” Modi told campaign managers and two federal ministers in Delhi last month, a week before the sixth of seven phases of voting was to begin in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh.“I don’t want to feel that I could have pushed myself a little more,” Modi was quoted as saying by a close aide who attended the meeting.For three full days the leader of the world’s largest democracy camped out in the holy city of Varanasi, his parliamentary constituency, walking the ancient streets and stopping at Hindu temples to seek blessings, despite warnings from aides about his security and the risk to his reputation had his party come up short.On Saturday the gamble paid off: Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) scored a thumping victory in Uttar Pradesh, home to one in six Indians, winning the biggest majority in the state for any party since 1977.The triumph vindicates Modi’s decision to turn the campaign into a referendum on his own performance after his shock decision last November to abolish high-denomination banknotes, a move he framed as a fight for the poor against the corrupt rich.“We were always nervous that overexposing the prime minister in the final stages of the election could make us look desperate,” said Keshav Prasad Maurya, the BJP’s state leader in Uttar Pradesh.As it turned out, Modi’s victory confounded even the most bullish voter surveys. The BJP won 312 of the 403 seats in the state assembly and, with 39.7 percent of the vote, almost matched its showing in Uttar Pradesh in the 2014 general election, when it claimed the biggest parliamentary majority in three decades.“Modi’s magic has destroyed the opposition and silenced sceptics in the party,” Maurya told Reuters on Saturday, as the scale of the victory became clear.TWO-TERM MODIThe win clears a path to victory for Modi at a 2019 general election, and gives him a free hand to consolidate his grip over a state that sends the highest number of federal lawmakers to parliament.That has raised hopes among investors that the BJP will embark on a round of new reforms to boost growth in Asia’s third-largest economy, and try to tackle the corruption and red tape that has long undermined India’s potential.Economists now expect Modi to launch initiatives aimed at flushing out ill-gotten gains from real estate, gold and campaign finance.But they caution that his biggest task remains transforming India’s economy into one that creates enough jobs for an emerging generation that is desperate to give up life on the farm for a more prosperous future.“Jobs is the biggest risk,” said Rajiv Kumar, an economist at the Delhi-based Centre for Policy Research. “That’s where he has to focus very hard and it could mean reforms as radical as demonetisation.”Modi’s BJP now heads the government in states where more than half of Indians live, while the Congress party, which has ruled India for most of the 70 years since independence, leads in regions covering less than 8 percent of the population.Success will increase the pressure on Modi to provide for an increasingly aspirational nation of 1.3 billion people, half of whom are aged 25 or under.“He has to do a very delicate tightrope walk between being reformist and populist,” said Nilanjan Mukhopadhyay, a journalist and biographer of Modi. “The problem in India is that people think reforms are pro-rich.”COMMUNAL TONEModi relied on his own charisma to clinch crucial votes in poor and agrarian Uttar Pradesh, but his campaign manager Amit Shah also takes credit for fielding the right candidates in a region where many people vote along caste and religious lines.Critics accuse Shah and Modi of “social engineering” and of switching to a more communally divisive tone to fire up their Hindu base as voting, staggered over the course of a month, progressed.Shah vowed to construct a Hindu temple on a razed mosque site and ban the slaughter of cows, worshipped by millions of Hindus.On the campaign trail, too, Modi played up religious divisions by asking why the state government ensured there were no power cuts in the Muslim holy month of Ramadan but not during the Hindu festival of Diwali.Still, the BJP likely collected minority votes, including Muslim women whom he courted by questioning an Islamic practice that allows men to divorce their wives with three simple words.“The results prove that Muslims and backward caste groups voted for the BJP,” said R.K. Mishra, a political analyst in Lucknow, the state capital of Uttar Pradesh.last_img read more

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100000 migrants fled to wartorn Yemen in 2017 IOM

first_imgChildren look at destruction in a petrol station following an air strike on the outskirts the Yemeni rebel stronghold of Saada in the Huthi movement`s northern heartland on 7 May, 2018. Photo: AFPNearly 100,000 migrants fled last year to Yemen, itself gripped by war and impending famine, to escape poverty and violence at home, the International Organization for Migration said Tuesday.Some 7,000 migrants entered Yemen each month, with the total number of arrivals in 2017 reaching near 100,000, the IOM said.Fleeing violence and poverty in the Horn of Africa, and at the mercy of smugglers, they hope to ultimately reach the more prosperous Gulf countries.Yemen is bordered to the north by Saudi Arabia.Once in Yemen — where nearly 10,000 people have been killed in three years of war — the lucky ones find “irregular work”, the IOM said.Less fortunate migrants face torture, sexual abuse and death.”Both en route and once in Yemen, many migrants suffer at the hands of cruel smugglers and other criminals, including physical and sexual abuse, torture for ransom, arbitrary detention for long periods of time, forced labour for no pay and even death,” the IOM said.Human Rights Watch last month released a report documenting Yemeni government employees who had “tortured, raped, and executed” migrants and asylum seekers at the Buraika migrant detention facility in the southern province of Aden, where the country’s embattled government is based.Migrants held at the facility — in use since early 2017 — were denied refugee protection and often deported en masse into rough seas, the watchdog said.The United Nations refugee agency has corroborated the report.Scores of migrants from Somalia and Ethiopia have died off the coast of Yemen in recent months.Last summer, dozens of migrants drowned after human traffickers forced them off their boats and into the sea. In January, more than 30 migrants drowned when their boat capsized off the Yemeni coast.In March 2017, a helicopter opened fire on a vessel carrying more than 140 migrants in the Red Sea off the Yemeni coast, killing 42 civilians.A confidential UN report seen by AFP said the attack was most likely carried out by the Saudi-led coalition, which is fighting alongside the Yemeni government against the country’s northern Huthi rebels, who are linked to Iran.The conflict has unleashed what the UN has called the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.last_img

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Carnival Cruise Line adds 13 new Journeys voyages in 201819

first_img Travelweek Group Posted by Carnival Cruise Line adds 13 new Journeys voyages in 2018-19 Share MIAMI — Carnival Cruise Line has expanded its popular Carnival Journeys cruise series with 13 new seagoing adventures departing in 2018 and 2019.The new 12- to 14-day voyages will depart from homeports along the East and West Coasts and the Gulf of Mexico, and follow on the heels of previously announced nine- to 15-day Carnival Journeys cruises departing in 2017-18.Guests sailing on Carnival Journeys cruises can participate in unique onboard activities and cultural opportunities at various ports of call that focus on a broad range of topics, including photography, cooking, arts and crafts and social media. There’s also a 1980s-themed ‘Throwback Sea Day’ that’s available.“Our Carnival Journeys cruises have proven enormously popular with guests who enjoy both unforgettable landside experiences and one-of-a-kind onboard enrichment activities that this unique program offers,” said Christine Duffy, Carnival president. “We’re thrilled to expand Carnival Journeys with these 13 new voyages that showcase some of the world’s most captivating destinations.”The 13 new Carnival Journeys voyages include:Carnival Splendour: 14-day Alaska cruise roundtrip from Long Beach, departing Aug. 25 to Sept. 8, 2018, visiting Hubbard Glacier, Icy Strait Point, Ketchikan, Skagway, Juneau and Sitka, Alaska, as well as Victoria, B.C.Carnival Breeze: 14-day Southern Caribbean voyage departing Galveston on Sept. 16, 2018, calling at Grand Cayman, Aruba, Curacao, Grenada, Barbados, Dominica and St. MaartenCarnival Splendour: three 14-day Hawaii cruises roundtrip from Long Beach departing Oct. 13, 2018, Dec. 1, 2018 and Jan. 12, 2019, visiting Maui, Honolulu, Kona and HiloCarnival Freedom: 14-day Panama Canal voyage roundtrip from Galveston, departing Oct. 28-Nov. 10, 2018, visiting Montego Bay, Aruba, Curacao and Cartagena prior to a partial transit of the Panama Canal and followed by Limon and CozumelCarnival Breeze: 14-day Southern Caribbean voyage operating roundtrip from Port Canaveral on Nov. 3, 2018, with stops at St. Thomas, Antigua, St. Lucia, Grenada, Barbados, St. Maarten, Tortola and San JuanCarnival Pride: 14-day Southern Caribbean cruise roundtrip from Baltimore, departing Nov. 4, 2018, calling at Grand Turk, Aruba, Curacao, Barbados, St. Lucia and St. MaartenCarnival Ecstasy: 12-day Southern Caribbean cruise roundtrip from Charleston, departing Nov. 10, 2018, featuring Amber Cove, Aruba, Curacao, St. Maarten and San JuanCarnival Miracle: 14-day Panama Canal voyage roundtrip from Tamp, departing Dec. 2, visiting Cozumel and Limon prior to a partial transit of the Panama Canal followed by Cartagena, Aruba, Curacao and Ocho RiosCarnival Pride: 14-day Southern Caribbean voyage roundtrip from Baltimore, departing Jan. 6, 2019, visiting St. Thomas, Antigua, Grenada, Dominica, St. Maarten, San Juan and Grand TurkCanrival Sunshine: 13-day Southern Caribbean cruise roundtrip from Port Canaveral on Jan. 12, 2019, calling at Aruba, Curacao, St. Maarten, St. Kitts, San Juan and Amber CoveCarnival Freedom: 14-day Southern Caribbean sailing roundtrip from Galveston on Jan. 19, 2019, featuring Grand Cayman, Aruba, Bonaire and Cartagena prior to a partial transit of the Panama Canal and followed by Limon and Cozumelcenter_img Wednesday, February 22, 2017 Tags: Carnival Cruise Line << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

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