Liberia’s Future on the Ropes

first_imgOur choice today as a country must never be gambling, but quality education. Our preference must be youth development and empowerment. It is too sad that gambling has become a way of life, and a major source of income for thousands of young Liberians living in a small nation endowed with abundant natural wealth. It beats my imagination to see Liberians standing in long lines everyday fighting for betting tickets. Gambling can never be an option to reduce massive poverty and youth unemployment. It only increases the number of unproductive citizens and less-busy minds.If genuine and sustainable steps are not taken to enhance youth development through education, empowerment and employment in Liberia, I foresee a country of professional gamblers, beggars and drug addicts 10 years from now. We must understand that 65% of our country’s population comprises youngsters. We can only protect the future of this nation if we begin to massively invest in young people proactively and not retrogressively. Anything less than this leaves Liberia’s future on the ropes. Liberia stands a serious risk of embracing a dead future if nothing is done now to reclaim the attention of most Liberians, especially young people, from a social syndrome that is increasingly swallowing our country. The addiction of this generation to gambling is alarming, and I foresee an unfulfilled destiny if urgent measures are not taken to arrest the situation. The demerits of this antisocial act are costly and any attempt to ignore this fact will lead us as a nation to an undesirable end.Gambling is not a friend to any innovative generation whose primary goal is to take exclusive charge of a prosperous tomorrow. It poses a threat to our existence as a people and encourages an ill-focused and visionless generation that eventually becomes a liability on the society. If Liberia must make significant progress in this 21st Century by becoming a trendsetter of economic expansion, then our government must take the lead by persistently prioritizing youth empowerment and employment! Gambling is not an option for Liberian youths. It is unarguably evident that the newest and most popular means of survival nowadays under the leadership of Africa’s first female President is gambling. This act has taken center stage within our bleeding economy. The economy of Liberia will continue to experience sharp declines until local dominance can overshadow foreign control. The need to develop young minds is paramount to national growth and genuine development. An attempt to abandon Liberia’s only hope will only add insult to injury.As the poverty gap widens, access to equal opportunities remains visibly unseen. Our country is on a pathway to economic and political uproar if we continue to intentionally ignore and abandon the preference of this generation. Empowerment opportunities such as education and employment remain key to protecting our fragile peace. The skyscraping increment of gamblers, prostitutes, and drug addicts in our society, especially in slum communities needs immediate remedy.As the number of betting booths, entertainment centers, and drugs hideouts around the country increases, there is less appetite to promote the culture of reading, quizzing, debate, academic excellence and quality education. As a result of this, the pillars of our educational system are crumbling. Students are no longer willing to spend hours reading and researching in order to ensure personal development. Other countries like Rwanda, South Africa, Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria and Uganda are far ahead of us simply because we have an ill-prepared population that lacks necessary skills to respond to existing global demands.It has been proven that gambling contributes to a high rate of drugs abuse, prostitution, robbery, etc. Gambling harms everyone and destroys potential fulfillments of its victims. There is nothing good that comes out of this less-busy practice. We see how it affects families every day and hampers societal growth. Liberia has a youthful population that needs serious human development. More than 65% of our population consists of young people who are yet to find a marketable career. What is this government doing to ensure sustainable empowerment program for over 102,193 ex-combatants who hastily underwent the DDRR process? The best solution to reduce post-conflict trauma is to build their capacity vocationally. Liberia needs technicians and technocrats who can easily use their minds and tools to enhance reconstruction. As a young Liberian patriot, I have a solemn duty to always speak truth to the powers that be. However, it is also my responsibility to provide the way forward to bring an end to our people’s suffering. In order to help address some of our burning concerns, it is important that this government under the stewardship of President Sirleaf engenders the following:1. Ban gambling activities across the country;2. Construct at least two modern Polytechnics in each of our 15 counties;3. Build modern youth centers and libraries in each of our 73 districts;4. Establish a functional community college in every county and increase budgetary support in order to enhance quality education. Existing colleges lack adequate support!5. Increase budgetary support to primary and secondary education and enforce effective school monitoring;6. Expand local markets and hugely invest in the agriculture, energy, and industries; and7. Create genuine public frameworks/structures to promote youth development, empowerment and employment opportunities.It would be in our best interest if we prohibit gambling like Gambia, Algeria, Indonesia, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Bhutan, the Vatican City, Cayman Island, etc. About The Author: Martin K. N. Kollie is a Liberian youth activist, student leader, an emerging economist and a young writer. He is a student at the University of Liberia reading economics and a member of the Student Unification Party (SUP). He can be reached at: [email protected] this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more


New ODA director changes course of watersheds in distress rulemaking

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Evin Bachelor, Law Fellow, Agricultural and Resource Law Program, Ohio State UniversityLess than a week into the administration of Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, a new approach to watersheds in distress has emerged. Director Dorothy Pelanda assumed the helm of the Ohio Department of Agriculture in days ODA had changed the status of the proposed watersheds in distress rules in the Register of Ohio to “To Be Refiled.”The change in status of the proposed rules signals that ODA plans to change its earlier proposal. The Register of Ohio, which is where state agencies post rules and proposed rules, defines a proposed rule with a “To Be Refiled” status as one “that has been temporarily removed from JCARR consideration by the rule-filing agency.” Until a sponsoring agency acts, the proposed rule remains in the “To Be Refiled” status and off of the agenda of the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review (JCARR).JCARR was set to consider the controversial proposal at its Jan. 22, 2019 meeting. However, the change in status of the proposed rules means that JCARR will not consider them until ODA takes further action. ODA may revise the proposal, refile as-is, take no action, or withdraw the proposal.The Kasich administration sought to expand the number of watersheds designated as “in distress,” which would impose additional regulations and restrictions on farmers who apply manure and nutrients to the land. Further, the proposal would have required impacted farmers to submit a nutrient management plan to ODA, and ODA would have to audit at least 5% of those plans. ODA’s Soil and Water Conversation Division held a hearing on Nov. 21, and a number of stakeholders attended to provide comments. A summary report of the hearing is available here. Currently, the Grand Lake St. Marys Watershed is the only watershed in Ohio subject to the additional requirements.last_img read more


With key players out, UST Tigresses still figuring out best lineup for UAAP Season 81

first_imgTS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting The Golden Tigresses will head on to the 2019 tournament without EJ Laure, the Season 77 co-Rookie of the Year with Kath Arado, and Tin Francisco due to injuries but Reyes is confident his team can back from their dreadful Season 80 campaign.UST finished Season 80 with the second-worst record in the league at 4-10, just a couple of games ahead of eighth seed University of the East at 2-12, but Reyes said they can turn things around.“It was really a roller coaster ride on what happened to us last season where we just plummeted,” said Reyes. “We had a lot of unfortunate incidents at the start where we had a couple of injuries so we weren’t able to compete with a full roster.”Alessandrini, who eventually became Season 80’s Rookie of the Year, and libero Rica Rivera both missed several games in 2018 due to injuries and the Golden Tigresses failed to recover from the set back the rest of the year.UST started out the tournament with a pedestrian 2-2 record but lost five straight to practically rule itself out of the Final Four.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Kei Nishikori comes up aces, rolls into 3rd round in Australia Open Chief Justice Peralta on upcoming UAAP game: UP has no match against UST PLAY LIST 01:00Chief Justice Peralta on upcoming UAAP game: UP has no match against UST00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss MANILA, Philippines—The UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament is about to start in a month’s time but University of Santo Tomas still has to finalize its lineup.ADVERTISEMENT SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviñocenter_img Head coach Kung Fu Reyes said only a handful are assured of spots in the Golden Tigresses’ roster with some still being deliberated on.Reyes said Cherry Rondina, Milena Alessandrini, rookie Eya Laure, Dimdim Pacres, and Caitlyn Viray are the ones assured of representing UST in the UAAP while the other players still have to fight for the vacant spots.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool stars“Sisi, Eya, Milena, Dimdim, because we lack players in the wing, and Caitlyn because we don’t have a middle blocker so she’ll become our go-to in that area,” said Reyes in Filipino during the team’s Thursday practice at Quadricentennial Pavilion.“There are three possible rookies who might be included but I really can’t name names for now because there’s still no official lineup yet although we’ve submitted a list to the UAAP already.” “There were a lot of factors but at the end of the day we are the ones responsible for all of these,” said Reyes. “Our campaign this season considerably looks brighter from the one before because the players are healthy, I just wish Tin is here so we can have a full lineup.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Is Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola? LATEST STORIES LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño View commentslast_img read more


Virat Kohli ready to start afresh after ‘forgettable season’ for Royal Challengers Bangalore

first_imgRoyal Challengers Bangalore capped off their horror season in Indian Premier League 2017 with a win in the last league game against Delhi Daredevils on Sunday.Bangalore got the better of Delhi by 10 runs to end their forgettable campaign on a positive note.However, despite the win, RCB finished at the bottom of the table with just seven points from 14 games, while Delhi were placed sixth with 12 points from as many matches.Bangalore, the runners up of last season, managed to win only three out of their 14 matches to endure their worst-ever show in the history of IPL.Speaking after the match, RCB captain Virat Kohli said it was good to finish off the season with a victory.Kohli, who led the team today with his 58 off 45 balls, said he couldn’t believe that they have won.”I just met Matthew Hayden and said I almost instinctively went to him after the game (because he interviews the losing captain). I could not believe we had won the game. It is good to finish off well. The guys took it as an opportunity,” Kohli said.Reflecting on a poor season, Kohli said it was a blessing in disguise and that his team would look to start afresh from next season.”It has been a season to forget and reflect on. We have to start fresh as a franchise. May be a blessing in disguise. Depends on how many players we can retain. But we do have guys who we have identified.”Some guys who have showed right kind of attitude and the mindset to go out there and perform under pressure situations. We are really happy to finish off with a win,” he added.advertisementKohli, who will be leading defending champions India in next month’s Champions Trophy in England, was also happy to get some runs under his belt ahead of the mega event.”Really happy to have got some runs ahead of the Champions Trophy. Pleased with the way I hit the ball today,” he said.last_img read more


10 months agoCercle coach hails ‘incredible’ Chelsea whiz Kylian Hazard after career best performance

first_imgCercle coach hails ‘incredible’ Chelsea whiz Kylian Hazard after career best performanceby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveChelsea midfielder Kylian Hazard produced perhaps the performance of his career to inspire Cercle Brugge to victory over Anderlecht on Sunday.Hazard, on-loan at Cercle, scored his second goal of the season and produced a five-star performance as his team defeated Anderlecht 2-1.Cercle coach Laurent Guyot declared afterwards: “Kylian has shown that he has an incredible potential. “The next step now has to be that he also puts a little more regularity in his performance. Because this Kylian I want to see every game. The audience gave him an ovation, although his change was not meant as applause. “We did not have the result yet and we could use some extra energy.”Hazard is on-loan at Cercle to the end of this season. TagsLoan MarketAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more


NPSC Gets Helping Hand from NCB

first_img The sponsorship will also be utilized to assist NPSC with its activities for Parent Month. NPSC initiatives have been bolstered by a $5 million sponsorship from the NCB. A slew of activities have been planned towards parental support and the betterment of families. Story Highlights The National Parenting Support Commission’s (NPSC) initiatives have been bolstered by a $5 million sponsorship from the National Commercial Bank (NCB), in cash and kind over the next two years.The sponsorship will also be utilized to assist NPSC with its activities for Parent Month, which is being observed in November, under the theme: ‘Transforming Families Through Communication Awareness Resources’.A slew of activities have been planned towards parental support and the betterment of families.“We are proud and pleased to partner on these initiatives.  NCB’s role is advancing the national agenda and the national cause. As financial partners, we have a vested interest as the national bank of Jamaica, because when you have sound citizens you have a better cadre of persons to lend [money] to,” NCB’s Manager for Group Corporate Communications, Belinda Williams, said at a recent JIS ‘Think Tank’.Mrs. Williams said that NCB understands the complexity of the need to change behaviour. “We understand too that there is globalization; and there are community and societal differences and norms that we have to address as well.  We operate within the communities and we understand the socio concerns of the communities which we serve, so this puts us in a position as responsible agents to be proactive,” she added.Meanwhile, Executive Director of the NPSC, Dr. Patrece Charles, said that the Commission is grateful for the support from NCB and other stakeholders.According to Dr. Charles, the NPSC’s main mandate is to streamline and co-ordinate all the parenting organisations in Jamaica.  “We work closely with the Early Childhood Commission (ECC), the Ministry of Labour and Social Security’s PATH programme and family courts, so that we can find a way to make parents more responsible in looking after their children,” she explained.She noted that strategic activities aimed at behaviour change, have been planned for Parent Month.“The flagship event of the Month will be a Parenting Village that will be hosted on Saturday, November 9, at the Ranny Williams Entertainment Centre. The whole concept of the Parenting Village will have elements of this year’s theme ‘Transforming Families Through Communication Awareness Resources’, which we will call the CARE,” Dr. Charles said.“One of the highlights of the village will be a Parenting Pub, which is actually going to be set up identical to an English Pub. We are going to have round table talks, parents will be discussing current issues that affect parenting skills, and we are also going to give them tips and conduct mini workshops,” she pointed out.In addition to the Parenting Village, the NPSC will host a series of Forums and Parenting Expos in the various Education Regions, and a National Assembly of Parents islandwide, in all schools.The month-long observation will culminate with the National Parent Teachers Association of Jamaica Conference and Expo, to be held at Jamaica College on Saturday, November 30.The Commission oversees the implementation and operation of the National Parenting Policy. The policy defines effective parenting from a Jamaican perspective and sets out the Government’s approach to supporting and strengthening positive parenting practices.last_img read more


Laws with Outdated Penalties to be Revised

first_img “All the Ministries have been provided with a matrix of all the laws relevant to them. Some of the fines were $40, $20 and $100. So, we have invited them to make recommendations as to what the new penalties should be,” the Minister said. Minister of Justice, Hon. Delroy Chuck, says many of the laws of Jamaica with outdated penalties will be revised and modernised during this fiscal year. Minister of Justice, Hon. Delroy Chuck, says many of the laws of Jamaica with outdated penalties will be revised and modernised during this fiscal year.Speaking at his post-Sectoral Debate press conference at the Ministry’s Constant Spring Road offices today (May 24), Mr. Chuck said that in the 2017/18 fiscal year, the Ministry undertook the task of reviewing the monetary penalties of over 800 laws.“All the Ministries have been provided with a matrix of all the laws relevant to them. Some of the fines were $40, $20 and $100. So, we have invited them to make recommendations as to what the new penalties should be,” the Minister said.“Reports have returned to us from some Ministries that some of these laws can be repealed, or some sections of the laws can be repealed. In those circumstances, starting this fiscal year, we will be upgrading and improving many of the laws, and certainly, over the next year or two, we want all the laws in Jamaica to be properly updated,” Mr. Chuck added.The matter of penalties came up for public discussion last year, following two cases in which persons convicted of breaches had paid insignificant fines.The Minister said efforts have to be made to make “fines be a deterrent to any offence”.Mr. Chuck pointed out that the Ministry will set the tone by completing the upgrading of its laws.“I am to get a report by the end of this month when we can start taking the laws to Parliament for the upgrading of the penalties,” he said.Some of the laws that need revision include the Coroner’s Act, Criminal Justice (Reform) Act, Gun Court Act, Hindu Marriage Act, Evidence Act, Enquiry into Causes of Fire and Accidents Act, Criminal Records (Rehabilitation of Offenders) Act, Crown Proceedings Act, and the Dangerous Drugs Act. Speaking at his post-Sectoral Debate press conference at the Ministry’s Constant Spring Road offices today (May 24), Mr. Chuck said that in the 2017/18 fiscal year, the Ministry undertook the task of reviewing the monetary penalties of over 800 laws. Story Highlightslast_img read more


DryShips to Buy Newcastlemax from Economou Entity

first_imgzoomIllustration. Source: Pxhere under CC0 Creative Commons license Greek ship owner and operator DryShips has agreed to acquire a Newcastlemax drybulk carrier for a price of around USD 50 million.The 2017-built unit would be purchased from an entity that owned by George Economou, the company’s Chairman and CEO.DryShips explained that the acquisition includes existing financing in place and will be effected by way of long-term bareboat charter party with purchase obligation.The bulker is expected to be delivered to DryShips in the second quarter of 2019 and in connection with the transaction, an entity owned by Economou has also agreed to time charter the vessel on an index-linked time charter of flexible duration, with optionality for DryShips to convert this index-linked time charter to fixed rate charter.Economou’s TMS Dry would manage the vessel.last_img read more


Oil NAFTA trade talk optimism help boost loonie and Toronto market

first_imgTORONTO – Rising oil prices and optimism on NAFTA trade talks helped push the dollar and Canada’s main stock index higher Wednesday while U.S. markets ended slightly down after the Federal Reserve raised interest rates.The Canadian dollar climbed 0.70 of a US cent to close at 77.17 cents US after encouraging news on both commodities and trade, said Kash Pashootan, CEO and chief investment officer at First Avenue Investment Counsel Inc.On trade talks, the U.S. confirmed Wednesday that there has been a breakthrough on sticking points in the auto sector, while Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said he believes there will be an agreement in short order on a renewed North American free trade deal.The progress is relieving some of the downward pressure on the loonie since U.S. President Donald Trump rattled trade relations by imposing steel and aluminum tariffs on all countries outside Canada and Mexico, said Pashootan.“We’ve seen the Canadian dollar weaken off of the assumptions that NAFTA might completely unravel… but the worst case scenario is starting to look like it might not come to fruition, and then the outcome might be a little bit better than the worst case that was priced in. So we’re seeing the dollar also strengthen off of that, but again it’s still unclear where NAFTA goes, and that’s the wild card.”Continued geopolitical uncertainty has been helping prop up oil prices in the meantime, with the May crude contract up US$1.63 to close at US$65.17 per barrel Wednesday, said Pashootan.He said the rise in oil prices, as well as commodities in general, have helped boost the loonie but that stumbles on trade talks could set it back.“It’s meaningful that we’re seeing oil prices up and the loonie rally, but I wouldn’t hold my breath here or get comfortable with the Canadian dollar at these levels, because all bets are off the table if NAFTA unravels.”Oil price-fuelled gains in energy stocks helped push the S&P/TSX composite index up 58.92 points to close at 15,675.28, including Encana Corp up 7.52 per cent to $15.73.The U.S. market had already priced in the expected rate hike from the Federal Reserve, leaving investors to try and decipher from comments Wednesday whether there will be the guided three rate hikes or four this year, said Pashootan.He said the markets oscillated today as investors balanced concerns about rising interest rates that could tamper stock prices and optimism on economic growth that would help boost profits.“You’re seeing evidence of that play out in the tug of war that’s taking place on the S&P 500 in terms of it going green to red and red to green.”In the end the S&P 500 index was down 5.01 points to 2,711.93 and the Nasdaq composite index was down 19.01 points to 7,345.29. The Dow Jones industrial average closed down 44.96 points to 24,682.31.The April natural gas contract ended down four cents to US$2.64 per mmBTU. The April gold contract closed up US$9.60 to US$1,321.50 an ounce and the May copper contract ended up two cents to US$3.06 a pound.last_img read more