Dunah Predicts 6th Place for Liberty Party

first_imgLP Standard Bearer Brumskine arrives at the party’s campaign launch amid thousands of supportersBy Hannah N. GeterminahNimba County District #7 lawmaker Worlea S. Dunah has predicted that the opposition Liberty Party (LP) will finish 6th place at the October polls.Dunah, a lawmaker loyal to the Unity Party (UP), made his prediction on the grounds that Liberty Party finished 3rd in 2005 and 4th in 2011, for which Senator Prince Johnson at the time referred to the LP as a “backward movement.”Sen. Johnson went on to say the 2011 elections results showed that the Liberty Party is not progressing, which indicates that the party has lost relevance in Liberian politics.Representative Dunah said apart from the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC), there is no credible opposition to the ruling Unity Party in the upcoming elections, noting that the Liberty Party has received several benefits from President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf that have caused the party unnecessary distractions, even the allegation that the President is supporting the party.He said all those calling themselves ‘opposition’ are people that the Unity Party government has made relevant and valuable in society.Commenting on the LP’s recent campaign launch at its headquarters in Congo Town, Rep. Dunah said that “LP had no business to set up its podium in the street to cause problems for other Liberians,” indicating that this will not show their strength.“If Liberty Party wants to show its strength, let them go to the Antoinette Tubman Stadium or the Samuel Kanyon Doe Sports Complex to tell the people what they can do because using the street to launch their party will cause an unnecessary problem for others,” he added.The Nimba County lawmaker indicated that the Unity Party will defeat all opposition parties on October 10, stressing that with the huge number of supporters that gathered under the heavy downpour at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium for the official launch of the party over the weekend, speaks volumes for the party’s potential victory on October 10.He said during the 2005 elections, the Unity Party came close to CDC in Montserrado County and during the 2011 elections, the CDC lost five legislative seats to Unity Party, which revealed that the UP has wrestled Monrovia from the grip of the CDC.Responding to Rep. Dunah’s statements, an executive member of Liberty Party and Grand Bassa County Senator Jonathan L. Kaipay denied that the party received support from the President, insisting that the LP remains the strongest opposition in the country.Senator Kaipay said the party’s strength has allowed it to produce two senators in Grand Bassa and one in Lofa County, adding that they are prepared this time to win the presidency. He said Rep. Dunah, being the founding secretary general of the opposition New Deal Movement, should know the definition of an opposition party.“In fact, we are in a race and we expect such statements to be made by others. If we are not ruling and Dunah is saying we are not the opposition, then where do we fit in?” Senator Kaipay asked.The Grand Bassa Senator disclosed that LP is not afraid of the crowd that Unity Party attracted on Saturday because, according to him, the Liberty Party’s recent crowd remains the biggest in the campaign history of Liberia.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Gross Conflict of Interest in Hummingbird Concession Deal

first_imgIs Senator Albert Chie a Shareholder in Hummingbird Resources?Much has been said and written about the ExxonMobil oil block alleged bribery scheme which, according to international transparency watchdog, Global Witness, involved a number of high profiled Liberian government officials. The reports all border on gross conflict of interest by government officials.The officials were accused of receiving bribes paid to them by US oil giant ExxonMobil, through the National Oil Company of Liberia (NOCAL). The officials have all since denied culpability as charged, the latest among them being former Justice Minister, Christiana H. Tah.Former Minister Tah’s statement to the Observer published in its June 12, 2018 edition dismissed the charges of bribery against her as a cheap shot designed by Global Witness to create the impression that she was “part of the corrupt organization that milked, plundered, and mismanaged the resources of Liberia”.Other accused officials including former Finance Minister Amara Konneh and former NOCAL Board Chairman, Robert Sirleaf, have also denied the allegations by Global Witness.Lost in all this debate, however, is the recently passed mining concession agreement granted the Hummingbird Resources Inc., placing it as the holder of the largest area of mineral exploration in the highly prospective area of southeastern Liberia.Grand Kru Senator and President Pro Tempore of the Liberian Senate, Albert Tugbe Chie, is said to be a 10 percent shareholder in the Hummingbird Resources, which he has refused to confirm or deny. But hardly had the ruckus over the Global Witness simmered when news broke of the proposed Eton and EBOMAF loans for road construction.The agreements  were speedily passed into law by both houses of the National Legislature leaving mouths agape as to whether brown envelopes had indeed been passed to secure their passage into law as mulled by an ever suspicious public.But this is not the first time that our legislators have been suspected of receiving bribes to pass certain bills and concession agreements. It can be recalled that Senator Prince Johnson once accused his colleagues of being very susceptible to accepting bribes from former President Sirleaf to ensure passage into law of certain bills and concession arrangements.When asked by the Daily Observer about his alleged 10 percent stake in Hummingbird Resources, the Senate President Pro Tempore declared, “It would have been a very good thing. As a matter of fact I am planning to open re-open my geological consultancy and practice as a professional geologist like lawyers and doctors who are also in the Legislature”.The President Pro Tempore continued, “Hummingbird is a publicly traded company on the London Stock Exchange. You can easily get the names of shareholders, the quantity of shares and when they were acquired. There is no need to speculate”, he said.Meanwhile, according to information sourced from the company’s documents, “the Group currently holds 14 exploration licences for all minerals except iron ore, covering over 7,000 square kilometres in total, which constitutes a significant proportion of eastern Liberia containing the Birimian sequence”.“In addition, the Group holds one iron ore exploration licence covering 155 square kilometres which is located in northern Liberia close to BHP Billiton’s Mount Kitoma iron ore exploration project, as well as Arcelor-Mittal’s Yekepa project containing the Mount Nimba iron ore mine.”But it remains unclear how much Liberia stands to benefit from this arrangement that places so much control of the country’s resources into the hands of what is described as fortune seekers. For the record, Hummingbird Resources plc is a mineral exploration company which was founded in late 2005 and incorporated in England and Wales.It was initially and wholly a gold exploration company and developer, headquartered in London. It initially began operation in Mali, a country torn apart by fratricidal strife involving separatists, jihadists and affiliates of Al Qaeda in the Mahgreb.Sources say that natural resource governance in crisis-hit Mali is extremely weak especially given its precarious security situation with large swathes of the country under the control or influence of armed non-state actors and that such a situation could have lent easily to bribery to secure sweetheart deals.Further according to reports, the Hummingbird resources are expected to mine about 14 trillion ounces of gold over the 20-yr life span of the project. The World Bank affiliate, International Finance Corporation (IFC), is said to have invested US$8m in the project. The World Bank has similar investment in the Kinjor mines of Aureus Mining Company in Grand Cape Mount County.But just how much Liberia stands to benefit from such a concession agreement, remains under undisclosed.What is however known is that a US$ 1.5 million signature fee was to be paid to the Liberian Government upon passage of the concession agreement into law and another US$1.5 million to be paid upon signing of the agreement into law by the then President who was at the time Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.The Hummingbird concession was one of those proposed agreements which was submitted for approval by President Sirleaf on the very cusp of her departure from office, but which was shelved. Whether those fees were paid to Government at the time or whether the fees were paid since the Weah Administration assumed office, remains unclear.But what is of particular interest to the Public is not just the extraordinary speed with which the agreement was passed into law. Of particular interest to the public are reports that Senate President Pro Tempore, Albert Tugbeh Chie is said to be a 10 percent shareholder in this company which constitutes gross conflict of interest.According to sources, Senator Chie’s links to this company can be traced as far back as 2005 when he along with the late Deputy Minister of Lands and Mines, Mulbah Z. Willie founded the Earthcons Inc, a local mineral consultancy company.Chie was at the time employed with the Ministry of Lands and Mines as a geologist. In 2013, the Liberia Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative(LEITI) listed Earthcons Inc, among several companies as being non-complaint with its tax obligations to government. At the time of the report Chie was then a serving senator of Grand Kru County but there was no available information disclosing he had severed links with Earthcons Inc since he became senator.It can however be recalled that in July 2015, a US$100 million gold mining Agreement with Hummingbird Resources (HUM) for mining operations in Sinoe County was signed between the Company and the Government of Liberia.But with the modification of the Bill to include Maryland, Grand Kru and River Gee counties, there is yet to be known whether the worth of the signature of the Agreement, signed and granted as well as the mining license remain the same.Things have not been made any clearer now that the agreement has been passed and signed into law. In the previous agreement, as of July 2015 and 2016 respectively, when submitted to the Senate, the company was to pay the government a US$1.5 million signature fee once the Agreement was ratified by the Legislature, and another US$1.5 million on the granting of the mining license.Hummingbird, on annual basis commencing on the first anniversary of the effective date of the Agreement, will contribute an amount to the Social Development Fund (SDF) for the affected communities, which means those areas in which the company will do its mining. The SDF during years one and two will be US$100,000; years three and four, US$150,000; years five to 10, US$200,000; and years 11 onward, US$250,000 throughout the 25-year Agreement.According to experts in the field, this is a paltry sum far under-weighing  what the company will be getting in return, though the company will also pay all other taxes and duties.As per the  Government of Liberia’s Economic Recovery Plan, Hummingbird will give first priority to qualified Liberians for employment, help improve workers and community education and health and give preference to Liberian suppliers in terms of procurement.But, it can be recalled that in November 2016, the Senate Joint Committee on Lands, Mines, Energy, Natural Resources and Environment, Judiciary, Claims, Human Rights and Petitions, Investment and Concessions, recommended to the plenary of the Senate to postpone the ratification process of the proposed MDA between the government and Hummingbird Resources (Liberia) Incorporated, pending some explanations from the Executive.According to the joint committee’s report, principally the lumping of four exploration licenses into a single MDA, instead of four separate MDAs and the lack of a plan towards the development and mining of the over four million ounces of inferred gold resources discovered in Sinoe County, were concerns that need explanations from the Executive.The committee in its concluding report to plenary, noted that the lumping together of the four exploration licensed areas into a single MDA instead of four in line with the New Minerals and Mining Law approved on April 3, 2000, will lead to revenue loss to the government in the tune of millions of United States dollars, “and significant reduction in social development funds and other benefits to the affected communities in Sinoe, Grand Kru, River Gee and Maryland counties.”Besides the loss of revenue and benefits, the committee maintained that the areas could be susceptible to limited and impetuous exploration work, which could result into some of the areas prematurely and unjustifiably been declared uneconomical and making them relatively unattractive for future investment.As per the findings of the committee, during the formulation of the MDA, there should have been a provision setting aside a production lot (s) over the areas in Sinoe where the gold has been discovered or the company given a maximum of one year to declare production areas.“Allotting the company five (5) additional years for exploration over these areas containing a gold resource after exploring for 10 years is excessive and the legal, technical and economic bases are debatable, ” the report concluded.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

HST raises controversy in Fort St. John

first_imgPimm is encouraging residents to visit his booth at the CKNL Trade show on April 16th to 18th. He says he will answer questions on the new tax system, and will provide examples on how the blended tax will benefit North Peace residents. Photo: Fort St. John residents sign the anti-HST petition on Tuesday morning – Christine Rumleskie/Energeticcity.ca [asset|aid=2720|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=0f7a08ef73b832efaa49f61aded861c1-Alvin 1_1_Pub.mp3] Stedel says he’s been seeing a slew of anti-HST activists signing the petition, ranging from business owners to concerned homeowners.Meanwhile, Peace River North MLA Pat Pimm acknowledges that not everyone will be a winner once the HST is implemented. However, he insists that low-income earners, single parents and small businesses will see the benefits of the blended tax, through the various rebate programs.He cautions residents to do some research before signing the anti-HST petition.Advertisement Despite the public uproar, Pimm didn’t say what he will do should enough residents of his consituency support the anti-HST petition.[asset|aid=2721|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=0f7a08ef73b832efaa49f61aded861c1-Pimm 1_4_Pub.mp3] Pimm admits the Liberal Government should have unveiled its HST plan a bit earlier. But he says the Province wanted to time its HST plans with Ontario, so decisions had to be made quickly.He still claims MLA’s knew nothing of the HST plans before the Provincial election in 2009. [asset|aid=2722|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=0f7a08ef73b832efaa49f61aded861c1-Pimm 2_3_Pub.mp3] Advertisement By Christine Rumleskie- Advertisement – Fort St. John residents are waging war on the Harmonized Sales Tax.Alvin Stedel is the regional organizer for Northeastern B.C.’s ‘Fight HST’ Campaign.He says by noon on Tuesday, around 300 had signed the petition calling on the government to repeal the controversial tax.In 2009, just 8,440 of the 28,427 eligible North Peace voters turned out to vote in the Provincial election.And while the HST petition only requires around 3,000 signatures, Stedel says surpassing last year’s voter turnout would send a strong message to the Campbell government. Advertisementlast_img read more

His own pockets

first_imgCastaic Glad he’s standing up Re “Garcetti’s folly” (Our Opinions, March 25): Eric Garcetti and some of his colleagues are helping workers at one airport hotel stop harassment and win a reasonable wage. In a city that is increasingly impossible to live in if you make less than a hundred grand a year – and I speak from experience – that seems right. As a resident of Garcetti’s district, I’m glad he’s standing up for this issue. People can stay at plenty of other hotels in the city. Workers shouldn’t have to declare a boycott on their own employer or lie down in the streets to win a wage of 10 bucks an hour. Garcetti is just pressing for a fair deal. Until the LAX Hilton agrees to one, we should go ahead and boycott it. Re “Garcetti’s folly” (Our Opinions, March 25): Big Labor should be wary of Eric Garcetti, a man who talks from both sides of his mouth and says nothing at the same time. Apparently he likes to take the city’s revenue and give it away without really giving a good reason as to why – his being one of the original votes to award money to that L.A. fireman, Tennie Pierce, and now he is trying to steer business away from a major business-tax contributor, The Hilton at Los Angeles International Airport. If he feels that an increase in the minimum wage is insufficient, as compared to a “living” wage, then he should dig deep into his own personal pockets to provide the balance, not pilfer the “pockets” of the city of L.A. What affects the city could also affect the county. – Ed De Rueda – Michelle Chihara Los Angeles Mel makes movies Re “Mount Mel erupts again” (March 24): Will someone please let Alicia Estrada know that Mel Gibson does not work for The Discovery Network or The History Channel. I suggest Estrada go over to the Radio, Television, and Film Department, take a course in film and find out how much nudity, drugs, violence or sex is calculated into any “Hollywood movie” in order for it to be a moneymaker. Then she can go to the Humanities Department and take another course about the U.S. Constitution and freedom of speech. Unfortunately, money drives Hollywood and is the common denominator for any film. The truth is usually left far behind. Gibson can tell you about that. He may not be nice about it, but at least he won’t be a politically correct wimp. – Jack McMahon Van Nuys Positive light? Re “Mount Mel erupts again” (March 24): I read with amusement the article about Mel Gibson being attacked again. Why do people feel they need to change history so their ancestors can be viewed in a more positive light? Get over it. The Mayans and others went to war to get prisoners for human sacrifices for their religion. Heck, my own ancestors painted themselves blue, ran around Britain naked – and made human sacrifices for their religion. That is the big injustice of life: You can’t choose your own relations. Just don’t invite them to dinner. – William Johnson Sylmar The hard part Re “Anti-war protest a satisfying effort” (Their Opinions, March 22): It’s easy to demonstrate and come home satisfied. The hard part of changing the course of policies in a democracy is arguing your point so persuasively that enough of the lethargic, the undecided and the opposition join you and cause a change in policy or law via the ballot box. It’s the only way to be certain that the politicos do our bidding. Yes, it’s slow, frustrating work, but it is the best system the world has ever seen. Always remember Benjamin Franklin’s answer to the lady who asked him what form of government they’d decided on. He replied: “A republic, Madam, if you can keep it.” Keeping our republic takes unrelenting effort and vigilance. Demonstration without convincing debate accomplishes little. – Walt Meares Burbank Lack of truth Re “Vietnam War veterans take up troops’ fight” (Their Opinions, March 22): Bridget Johnson’s column on the March 17 anti-war protest in Washington, D.C., is unencumbered by the fact that she wasn’t present. Her disingenuous repetition of an “unofficial estimate” of 30,000 pro-war protesters distorts the fact there were, generously speaking, about 500 present. This number contrasts with the 10,000 to 20,000 people marching against the war who weren’t “easily outnumbered” as Johnson says. I can say this because I was there – Johnson wasn’t. The canard that protesters were going to damage the memorials was used by the Gathering of Eagles to bring out the few hundred pro-war counterprotesters. Johnson’s lack of truth and pro-war fear tactics are exactly like the Bush/Cheney administration’s lies and manipulation that have led America into a disastrous war in Iraq. – James W. Weaver Statham, Georgia Parade rest To the turkeys who fired Santa Claus on Hollywood Boulevard: I want to give you the Scrooge Award for dumping him due to your penny-pinching. No more parade? First Johnny Grant “retires.” Now you’re retiring a tradition that families have enjoyed for decades due to budget? – John C. Weaver Palmdale Nursing shortage Re “Nurse shortage grows acute, classes lacking” (March 26): As a registered nurse with more than 30 years of experience, I want to thank your paper for highlighting one of the primary obstacles our profession faces today: waiting lists of people to enter nursing school, and a finite number of available seats. Your article also articulates the role played by the lack of nursing educators to exacerbate this problem. I found it disappointing, however, that you failed to examine alternatives being used in other states, which are beginning to ameliorate the nurse educator problem. -Genevi ve M. Clavreul, R.N., Ph.D. Pasadena Drawing power Re Dana Summers cartoon (March 26): Monday’s main editorial cartoon was great. The Clinton administration fired 93 U.S. attorneys – some of whom were investigating the Clintons – and the Democrats just smiled. The Bush administration fires eight U.S. attorneys, and the Democrats are screaming bloody murder. We want more Summers cartoons. Keep up the good work on a fair and balanced newspaper. – Carol Milton Woodland Hills Nothing to hide President Bush is not hiding anything; nor is he adverse to having members of his administration tell the truth. The issue is a constitutional matter of executive privilege, which was first invoked by President George Washington, explicitly confirmed by an 1807 resolution of Congress and numerous court decisions, and practiced by every single American president. The executive branch is co-equal with the legislative branch, and presidents need not respond to every political request from Congress. If they did, they would get precious little done when Congress is controlled by the opposition party. Bush’s offer is a completely normal – even generous – response to a fishing expedition by an adversarial Congress. Based on precedent, he need not respond at all. – Gregg Frazer Castaic160Want 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

Zimbabwe coach quits, Burundi boss stays

first_imgIn other matches under Antipas, Zimbabwe drew with Botswana in the Cup of Nations and recovered from a shock loss in Somalia to beat them on aggregate in a 2022 World Cup eliminator.He replaced fellow former international defender Sunday Chidzambwa, who quit after a winless first round exit from the 2019 Cup of Nations in Egypt.Antipas offered no reason for leaving, saying only that he was “bowing out”, but Zimbabwe have time to weigh options with the next competitive match a 2022 World Cup qualifier in March.Zimbabwe are ranked 29th in Africa and 117th in the world and have generally underperformed since the country gained independence 39 years ago.Meanwhile, Burundi officials have defended coach Olivier Niyungeko after losses to the Central African Republic and Morocco in the Cup of Nations.– ‘Complex’ –“The problem is not coach Olivier Niyungeko, the problem with the national team is complex,” an official said without giving further details.Niyungeko became a national hero last year when he guided the tiny central African country to the biennial continental tournament for the first time.But the ‘Swallows’ flopped last week, losing 2-0 away to the Central African Republic and 3-0 at home to Morocco, who punished a series of defensive blunders.Already four points adrift of joint leaders Morocco and Mauritania, the odds are stacked against Burundi reaching successive Cup of Nations tournaments.Another coach under pressure is Ibrahim Kamara, whose star-stacked Ivory Coast side struggled to overcome Niger, then fell to Ethiopia, a country ranked 95 places lower in the world.Despite boasting a squad including Premier League trio Serge Aurier, Nicolas Pepe and Wilfried Zaha, the Ivorians missed a penalty before converting a second spot-kick to edge the Nigeriens.After Aurier scored early in Ethiopia, they conceded twice in 10 minutes to lose and leave Kamara feeling uncomfortable while officials privately ponder hiring a foreign coach.Before local Kamara was appointed, Ivory Coast hired numerous Europeans, including Swede Sven-Goran Eriksson, Bosnian Vahid Halilhodzic and Frenchman Herve Renard.0Shares0000(Visited 15 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Olivier Niyungeko last year became the first Burundi coach to qualify for an Africa Cup of Nations tournament © AFP / JAVIER SORIANOJOHANNESBURG, South Africa, Nov 20 – Joey Antipas said on Wednesday he was quitting as caretaker coach of Zimbabwe, one day after achieving the best result of his four months in charge.Zimbabwe scored a rare victory in neighbouring Zambia on Tuesday with the 2-1 win placing them second behind defending champions Algeria in a 2021 Africa Cup of Nations qualifying group.last_img read more

Revealed! You will love the new kit Tottenham are going to wear

first_img 4 Click the arrow to see the new Tottenham home kit as well as the new goalkeeper top – Here’s what Hugo Lloris will be wearing – is he going to stay, though? Click the arrow to see the new Tottenham home kit as well as the new goalkeeper top – Spurs players will be wearing this in their final home game against Hull 4 4 4 Click the arrow to see the new Tottenham home kit as well as the new goalkeeper top – The six stripes that make up the home shirt’s diagonal sash are inspired by the design of the emblem which is positioned below the golden cockerel on top of the stadium. Click the arrow to see the new Tottenham home kit as well as the new goalkeeper top – He has been linked with a £40m transfer to Man United, so will Harry Kane be wearing this top next season? In their last game at White Hart Lane this season, Tottenham will show fans the kit they will be wearing next season.The six stripes that make up the Under Armour home shirt’s diagonal sash are inspired by the design of the emblem which is positioned below the golden cockerel on top of the stadium.Spurs play Hull and supporters can get their hands on the new shirts as well as the new goalkeeper kit now.What do you think, Tottenham fans?last_img read more


first_imgDeputy Mac LochlainnAn EU farm meeting at Milford has heard calls for a subsidy for those living in rural areas because these people are the custodians of the countryside.And it was claimed the Government is getting a very good deal from those remaining in rural Ireland because they are protecting and maintaining these structures for future generations.The EU farm meeting in Milford was organised by Sinn Fein’s Matt Carthy MEP and attracted an international panel of speakers from peripheral locations across Europe. And top of the agenda was a blueprint for the future as the next review of the CAP Programme gets under way in the New Year.Irish farming is at a critical crossroads and this was highlighted recently in this paper with the revelation that farm incomes have fallen by 65% over these past twenty years. Things are not about to improve any time soon according to the main body of opinion at the meeting.In his address to the delegates, Malcolm Thompson Director of the ICSA said that 95% of small farmers are working for free because their enterprises are no longer economic.He told the Tirconaill Tribune: “For 1.3 billion Euros, the EU can exercise control over every aspect of our farming, our finances, and even our farms. In return agriculture contributes nine billion Euros to our economy. 95% of farmers along the western seaboard work for free, we are not paid for our labour, we exist on the pittance of the single farm payment, sponging on our wives or by reliance on social welfare benefit. Continuing his discourse Mr. Thompson said: “The burning question must be… is commercial farming sustainable in the less favoured areas? The answer is simple. As things stand we cannot compete commercially with those whose food product is on their doorstep available at first cost, whose market is on their doorstep with no necessary transport costs. Everything we buy, feed, fuel and fertiliser needs to be imported into this island. We can only consume 10% of our production. That leaves 90% which, again has to be transported out of Ireland, across the sea and the land of Europe in order to reach our target market.In short, without support our farms are not commercially sustainable. What is the answer?Europe maintains that they support the concept of the family farm. They support the concept of people living in rural communities rather than congregating in large urban settlements with all the associated problems. If this is true then we need a ‘rural livers’ payment which will be paid to all farmers who maintain a certain degree of agricultural production.We need regional recognition of our product, which identifies our product, sits unique nature, its flavour and its provenance, protected by European law, a product which cannot be replicated elsewhere and a product which commands a price reflective of its uniqueness.”80% of CAP going to 20% of producersThe entire issue of the CAP payments distribution system was clearly emphasised by Henry O’Donnell from the Irish Natura and Hill Farming Association (INHFA). He said the distribution of money within CAP was unfair. He drew attention to agri-environment schemes in Pillar 2 where he said that hill and commonage farmers had difficulty getting access to schemes such as GLAS. O’Donnell claimed that Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) payments should have been better targeted to producers that farmed in the most disadvantaged areas and that there currently was a small payment being distributed to a wide range of producers farming in a range of areas.Highlighting the funding distribution, Mr. O’Donnell said that 80% of CAP payments goes to the 20% of those responsible for 27% of production and that was a fact of EU funding distribution, he added.Falling farm incomes was described as the biggest challenge facing farmers in peripheral areas by Bert Stewart from the Irish Farmers’ Association. Mr. Stewart said the average farm income across Ireland in 2014 was €26,000 but this was substantially lower than the average industrial salary of €36,000.He said that income figures for 2015 will be reduced further due to the low prices being received for many farm commodities across sectors currently. He said that, because of this, there was often a need for off-farm income in farm families in peripheral areas and highlighted the importance of direct payments from the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) to farmers to subsidise farm incomes. Deputy Padraig MacLochlainn said the Irish family farm model is one to be cherished but policy changes in the EU and nationally have led us to believe that we are facing into a sector that nurtures industrial large scale farming. This places pressures on small farms unable to compete, potentially pushing many out of the sector. The future of rural Ireland depends on a strong network of family farms.“The development of a thriving agriculture sector needs farmers- farmers who are confident and supported in their work both by central government and by Europe.In peripheral areas like Donegal, communities frequently feel at a loss as to how to halt the decline we’ve witnessed over the last decades. Many rural communities feel their voices are not being heard in the corridors of power.“Over recent decades, thousands of farmers have been forced off the land.There is a need for fundamental change in policies and practices in relation to the West and North West of Ireland. There needs to be a change of direction – this conference aims to contribute to that change by not only outlining the challenging nature of peripheral farming and rural development in peripheral areas but also assess ways to support and sustain them.“Peripheral can mean many things from mountainous and areas of natural constraint to regions that have been marginalised by underinvestment and neglect.“In Donegal we face challenges associated with the physical landscape as well as from discriminatory government policy which continues to prioritise the east coast,” concluded Deputy MacLochlainn.PEOPLE LIVING IN RURAL AREAS OF DONEGAL NEED SUBSIDY, EU FARM MEETING TOLD was last modified: November 12th, 2015 by John2Share 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:eurofarmsPadraig Mac Lochlainnsubsidylast_img read more

Alderweireld to run down Spurs contract and demand Manchester United move

first_img Where every Premier League club needs to strengthen in January Toby Alderweireld will run down his Spurs contract and demand a move away if his club do not let him join Manchester United, according to reports.The Belgian centre-back refused to sign a new £130,000-a-week deal last season and has been an outcast since, but Spurs still want £75million for him, which has put United off a deal. LIVING THE DREAM An Old Trafford switch is the Belgian’s dream move Alderweireld made just three league starts in 2018 following injury and a refusal to sign a new deal Tony Cascarino backs Everton to sign two strikers for Carlo Ancelotti Kevin De Bruyne ‘loves Man City and wants to keep winning’, reveals father three-way race Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade Chelsea confident of beating Man United and Liverpool to Sancho signing Cavani ‘agrees’ to join new club and will complete free transfer next summer IN DEMAND Alderweireld, 29, is desperate for a United move and will turn down any other interested parties, according to the Mirror.His current Spurs deal has only 11 months to run, but the club have the option to trigger a one-year extension.That would however activate a clause allowing him to leave for £25m.Alderweireld’s desire to quit White Hart Lane could leave Spurs in the lurch with just Davinson Sanchez, Jan Vertonghen and Juan Foyth as out-and-out centre-halves in the squad. moving on RANKED Alderweireld’s time at Spurs appears to be over center_img Liverpool’s signings under Michael Edwards – will Minamino be the next big hit? 3 targets targets The biggest market value losers in 2019, including Bale and ex-Liverpool star REVEALED LATEST TOP WORK 3 Spurs are still yet to make a signing this summer and have just six days remaining before the window shuts on August 9.Fans are growing impatient with the club as they await arrivals.Several key players, including Harry Kane and Heung-Min Son, as well as boss Mauricio Pochettino, have extended their contracts with the club but there have been no new faces.And Spurs supporters fear this could be the start of a lean period in the transfer market as the club look to fund their £1bn new stadium, with key names such as Alderweireld needing to bring in big sizeable returns. LATEST TRANSFER NEWS 3 Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ Man United joined by three other clubs in race for Erling Haaland last_img read more


first_imgDONEGAL schoolboy Timothy Woods became the first person on the island to play solo for new President Michael D Higgins tonight.The talented pianist from the Abbey Vocational School in Donegal Town played for President Higgins and hundreds of other guests and VIPs at the Millennium Forum in Derry City during the final of the RTE School Choir of the Year.Northern Secretary Owen Patterson and other political leaders were also in the audience which saw Wesley College from Dublin crowned all-island choir champions. Teenager Timmy was introduced to play a solo piece on the piano for the audience.“I am delighted to join you here tonight and to have had the privilege of enjoying such beautiful choral performances,” said President Higgins.“Hans Christian Anderson said that where words fail, music speaks.”The President thanked all the 46 choirs who entered the annual contest run by charity Co-operation Ireland and Irish state broadcaster RTE. “It has been inspiring to witness the final performances but every participating choir in this competition has shown the wonderful talent and teamwork that enabled each and every one of them to represent their school to the very, very best of their ability,” he said.“Surely a people that can sing together in harmony is a wonderful and great omen for the future.”© 2011 donegaldaily.com, all Rights ReservedThe copying, republication or redistribution of donegaldaily.com Content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited by law.Follow us on www.twitter.com/donegaldaily Follow us on www.facebook.com/donegaldailySell anything on www.donegaldailyclassifieds.comDONEGAL TOWN STUDENT PLAYS FOR NEW PRESIDENT HIGGINS was last modified: November 14th, 2011 by BrendaShare 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:abbey vocational school donegal townPresident Higginslast_img read more

New dinosaur discovery in South Africa

first_img24 June 2015South African and Argentinian palaeontologists today announced the discovery of a new 200-million-year-old dinosaur from South Africa, and named it Sefapanosaurus, from the Sesotho word sefapano.Found in the 1930s some 30km from the Lesotho border in the Zastron area of the Free State, it had remained hidden for decades among thousands of fossils in the largest fossil collection in South Africa at the Evolutionary Studies Institute (ESI) at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.While visiting the ESI collections to look at early sauropodomorph dinosaurs, Dr Alejandro Otero, Argentinian palaeontologist and lead author, and a PhD student from the University of Cape Town, Emil Krupandan, noticed bones that were distinctive from the other dinosaurs they were studying.Considered first to represent the remains of another South African dinosaur, Aardonyx, close scrutiny of the fossilised bones revealed that it is a completely new dinosaur.Distinctive bonesOne of the most distinctive features is that one of its ankle bones, the astragalus, is shaped like a cross. Considering the area where the fossil was discovered, the researchers aptly named the new dinosaur, Sefapanosaurus, after the Sesotho word sefapano, meaning “cross”.The remains of the Sefapanosaurus include limb bones, foot bones, and several vertebrae. It is represented by the remains of at least four individuals in the ESI collections. It is considered to be a medium-sized sauropodomorph dinosaur – among the early members of the group that gave rise to the later long- necked giants of the Mesozoic.“This find indicates the importance of relooking at old material that has only been cursorily studied in the past, in order to re-evaluate past preconceptions about sauropodomorph diversity in light of new data,” says Krupandan.Scientific collaborationIt also highlights the importance of close collaboration between South African and Argentinian palaeoscientists.Dr Jonah Choiniere, co-author and senior researcher in dinosaur palaeobiology at the ESI, says: “This new animal shines a spotlight on southern Africa and shows us just how much more we have to learn about the ecosystems of the past, even here in our own backyard.“And it also gives us hope that this is the start of many such collaborative palaeo- research projects between South Africa and Argentina that could yield more such remarkable discoveries.”The researchers are from South Africa’s University of Cape Town and Wits University, and from the Argentinian Museo de La Plata and Museo Paleontologico Egidio Feruglio. They made the announcement in a paper, titled: “A new basal sauropodiform from South Africa and the phylogenetic relationships of basal sauropodomorphs”, published online in the journal, Zoological Journal of the Linnaean Society on 23 June.Source: Wits Universitylast_img read more