Jamaican female boxing sensation Alicia ‘Slick’ Ashley won the World Boxing Council (WBC) Comeback of the Year Award last Friday night at the 2016 Female Boxing Convention, which was held in Tijuana, Mexico, from January 27-31.Ashley, who lost her WBC Super bantamweight title on September 6, 2014, to Mexican Jackie Nava by way of a controversial majority decision in Mexico, regained the title on October 29, 2015, with a sparkling victory over Ireland’s Christina McMahon in New York. She was nominated for three awards Comeback of the Year, Champion of the Year, and Event of the Year.She dominated the fight, floored McMahon in the eighth round, and had her in serious trouble in Round 9. McMahon was able to weather the storm however, and ended up with a loss by unanimous decision. This obviously impressed the judges.Ashley told The Gleaner on Sunday that the competition was keen for the various awards and that she was elated to have picked up the award for her fight against McMahon.”Winning this award is great. It is icing on the cake after regaining my title, and it shows recognition not only from the WBC, but from the fans all over the world who were part of the decision making process,” she said.Ashley, who has been consistently nominated for the RJR Sportswoman of the Year Award, won the Chairman’s Award in 2014 for her achievements as a boxer. She was the 2015 Female Boxer of the Year and was nominated for the 2015 Sportswoman award.OLDEST FEMALE BOXERShe said that she was surprised at the ceremony on Friday when she was also presented with certificates from the Guinness Book of Records organisation for being the oldest female boxing champion in the world in 2013 and again in 2015 when at age 48, she defeated McMahon.She said: “I always get a thrill when people say to me, ‘You do not look 48 years old’. This is a tribute to my lifestyle and my work ethic, and I plan to box for many years to come. I want to continue doing well for myself and my country, so I work very hard.”It would be great if it is a title fight, but if not, I will still be happy as long as I get to fight before my home crowd and hear them cheering me on over an opponent.”
The Johns/Port Mourant Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC) in Region 6 (East Berbice-Corentyne) has been slow to investigate the construction of a benab on its reserve.Councillor Orin McDougallThis sloth has caused a lone councillor to mount a picketing demonstration in protest of the construction.Orin McDougall the protestor says NDC Chairman Imran Ali has instructed that they seek the intervention of the Ministry of Communities seeking advice. The benab which he says is illegally constructed is situated in front of the Area ‘H’ Ground.As a Councillor representing Constituency One, McDougall says he is obligated to ensure the council’s by-laws are not breached in his constituency.“This particular area that I am standing on is the Port Mourant reserve and we have noticed construction going on. It is an illegal operation because it is the council’s reserve and according to Chapter 28:02 Section 53:1-4 inclusive AB and C, it states that it is illegal to encumber the council’s reserve or parapet; this is the parapet of the Johns/Port Mourant NDC. I am protesting the building of anything on this parapet,” McDougall told Guyana Time< while in the area of construction.The Councillor explained, “We had statutory meetings and special meetings where the issue was discussed. The Overseer is supposed to send letters to Mr Hilbert Foster and the Rose Hall Town Council.”According to McDougall he is being proactive because he is one of the councillors elected to represent residents in that community.
In what could be considered as violation of the highly controversial National Code of Conduct Law, the ruling Unity Party over the weekend elected several senior appointed government officials to serve as the Party’s National Executive Officers for the next six years.The 2016 UP convention, held in the provincial city of Gbarnga, which saw the election of senior and junior cabinet ministers, have come under integrity check with opposition parties, including the Congress of Democratic Change (CDC) demanding their immediate dismissals, terming their elections as conflict of interest, and in violation of the National Code of Coduct.On Friday, July 8, the Minister of Labour, Neto Lighe was elected the UP’s senior vice chairman; GSA Deputy Director General J. Cole Bangalu, national vice chairman for Inter-Party Affairs; Minister of Information, Culture and Tourism (MICAT), Lenn Eugene Nagbe, was elected as national secretary general; and Assistant Agriculture Minister Patrick Tarnue Worzie, national deputy secretary general.In a press conference yesterday, July 11, at the CDC headquarters in Congo Town, the party chairman Nathaniel McGill said election of the cabinet ministers gravely contradicts Section 5.1 (a & c) of the National Code of Conduct. The referenced section rules that, “All Officials appointed by the President shall not, (a) engage in political activities, canvass or contest for elected offices; and (c) serve on a campaign team of any political party, or the campaign of any independent candidate.”“We are asking the President to dismiss Ministers Lighe, Nagbe and others because their election as UP officials contravenes the Code of Conduct,” the CDC Chairman said. “We are hopeful that she would do it because it is her responsibility to protect the law of the land, not undermine it.”Last Week, Mulbah Morlu, CDC’s chairman for operations, also said the action by several government officials to actively participate in political activities at the just concluded convention of the ruling Unity Party, ignoring provisions of the Code of Conduct signed by the President is a recipe for chaos come 2017.Morlu said: “This is bad precedent, and I believe that the rule of law is being butchered. This government is on the wrong pattern and the laws of Liberia are under threat from this government.”He continued: “What if the CDC was to choose which law to obey and disobey, then we are heading for trouble. What if the CDC says tomorrow we are going to respect certain guidelines from the National Elections Commission (NEC) and disobey the others? This is our country; we are all equal under the law.”Earlier, a stalwart of the National Patriotic Party (NPP) Bong County Senator Jewel Howard Taylor, one of the key sponsors of the Code of Conduct Act, also condemned the election of cabinet ministers, arguing that it violates the law of the country.Senator Taylor said the Code of Conduct is very clear, stating that no official appointed by the President should engage in political activities, canvass or contest for elected offices, because it’s obvious such individuals will further violate the Code of Conduct using government facilities, equipment or resources in support of partisans or political activities.The Code of Conduct was signed into law on Monday, May 12, 2014, by President Sirleaf the at her Foreign Ministry office. In part, the Code of Conduct said no person whether elected or appointed to any public office, shall engage in any activity which shall be against public policy or constitute conflict of interest.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
UL’s new president, Dr. Ophelia Weeks, receives the gavel of authority from retired president, Dr. Emmett DennisDr. Ophelia Inez Weeks, the newly inducted President of the University of Liberia (UL), has underscored a number of strategies she intends to employ to improve the institution. Among her plans are personnel evaluation and enhancement programs, faculty capacity building, teaching and learning centers, and introduction of new academic programs to include Information Communication Technology for undergraduates and Environmental Sciences at the graduate level.In her 48 minute induction address on the theme “To Nobler Destiny”, Dr. Weeks emphasized that her administration will weed out the wrong people from the institution at all levels, and will work with the right persons. She described those she considers the right persons as individuals who are committed to the ideals and success of the UL and who are trustworthy and have integrity.With deep emphasis and emotions, she said “Malfeasance, misfeasance, and non-feasance (MMN) are not welcome, and our policy moving forward is zero tolerance for the MMN.” On faculty and capacity building, Weeks said in the next three years, she hopes the university can realize qualitative and quantitative improvements in faculty profile. “We will reduce part-time faculty by 50 percent, increase full time faculty to a ratio of three percent full time to one percent part-time, determine the instructional needs of each academic unit based on required course offerings each semester, and especially focus on training and hiring advance degree faculty in these disciplines, as well as where we have specific gaps,” Dr. Weeks said.She added that her administration will reduce by 85 percent the number of faculty with solely first degrees, and increase the number of faculty with terminal degrees by 30 percent. In addition to new academic programs, Dr. Weeks disclosed that in the next four years, her administration will establish undergraduate programs in mechanical engineering, architecture, fisheries and an Honors College. She said efforts have been made for the introduction of a Masters in Public Health and Environmental Sciences program, which according to her, will not take three years to establish. She further disclosed that the UL administration in partnership with the Ministry of Health, Tubman National Institute of Medical Arts (TNIMA) and international partner universities has drafted a curriculum for the Master’s program in Public Health.Dr. Weeks, who also acknowledged what her faculty and staff have achieved, told the gathering that the UL administration and faculty are in the process of establishing a functioning Testing and Evaluation Center that will not only be limited to entrance exams. Furthermore, she said the UL Student Union (ULSU) financial aid program is causing registration difficulties every semester, and therefore she is contemplating putting in place Students’ Success and Service Centers through which students are recruited, evaluated, monitored and placed in various university-wide academic and administrative work-study settings. She also promised to make available Wi-fi internet access at the four campuses of the UL by the end of the year; assuring that it is already in the making.Outgoing UL President, Dr. Emmet A. Dennis, in his remarks, said he was happy to be able to see Dr. Weeks succeed him. He urged her to handle the gavel of authority given to her with sincerity and integrity that will not give in to the activities of people he referred to as “glass bottle.”Performing the induction ceremony was the Acting Chair of the Board of Trustees, Senator Jewel Howard Taylor who oversaw the robbing of the new president and the presentation of the gavel of authority to her by the outgoing president, Dr. Emmet Dennis who now becomes the 13th president emeritus.Earlier, Dr. Roseda Marshall, co-chair of the UL president search committee reported on how Dr. Weeks was selected as president.Yesterday’s ceremony was attended by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Visitor of the UL who made special remarks (separate story), a number of diplomats including United States, Cameroon and Cuba. U.S. Ambassador Christine Elder congratulated Dr. Weeks, and urged her to be diligent, to produce lawyers that will provide pro-bono services to poor people to have access to justice. She also said the United States stands to help the UL in the areas of engineering.Also in attendance were government officials, members of the legislature, presidents of other universities and Dr. Weeks’ family members and many friends and well wishers.Dr. Weeks’ younger sister, Angelique Weeks, described her sister as a “workaholic and very strict without fear.” Angelique, who is chairperson of the Liberia Telecommunications Authority, said she believes in her sister and is confident that she will deliver on her goals, “and make the family proud.” The two sisters in their separate speeches, paid homage to their parents for their upbringing and insistence on education that helped to make them successful individuals.Other speakers at the convocation included representatives of universities in Liberia and Ghana, the UL faculty and staff, the Alumni Association and the president of the UL Student Union.Dr. Weeks becomes the second female president of UL, the first being Dr. Mary Antoinette Brown-Sherman after whom the Fendell campus will be named. Dr. Weeks follows in the footsteps of her father who also served as UL president (1959-1971) and was the first Liberian to hold that post.Some faculty members that spoke to this newspaper lauded the outgoing president, Dr. Dennis, for improvements at the university during his nine year tenure, and pledged to work with Dr. Weeks in meeting the objectives and goals of the university as she takes over.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Amid high tides last week which affected a large section of Guyana’s coast, residents of Leguan in the Essequibo River also faced the brunt of flooding.One resident, Somnauth Devar, reached out to Guyana Times and told of a number of complaints about their condition after the inundation. He shared that while assistance was brought to the coastland, his community waited for many days before any relief efforts.Last weekend, he said the island was hit by massive flooding along with other sections of the coastland. After severe overtopping for a few days, officials of the Civil Defence Commission would have visited Leguan and Wakenaam on Thursday, where assessments were undertaken.“We get the flood here and all. They come to see what damage we get Thursday but nobody said anything about the defence and how to fix it for the next time. The West Coast wasn’t the only affected place. We yard had high high water and we had to wait with no assistance. We needed somewhere to go until this water went away,” the resident related.He added that while sea defence works are ongoing in some parts of the island, there is much more to be done. In fact, he insisted that the current structure would be inadequate in a few years to support the magnitude of overtopping in the coming years.“Every year, what we seeing is that the tide coming bigger and bigger. So you can’t build back the same structure and expect that the people here would be safe. The seawall got to be higher to protect we. They just rebuilding the same thing that we had before…When the people from the Ministry come round the last time, people tell them about it”.According to other residents, persons residing in close proximity to the river were more severely affected than others.On September 28, residents in several coastal villages were under water from the unprecedented high tides, which lasted until Thursday. According to authorities, the communities in Regions Two (Pomeroon-Supenaam), Three (Essequibo Islands-West Demerara), Four (Demerara-Mahaica), Five (Mahaica-Berbice) and Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) were affected by the high water.Stakeholders from the various agencies met on Tuesday afternoon to discuss the damage from the floods and steps to be taken to prevent or alleviate similar impacts from another bout of high tides expected on October 26, 2019.Updating the media during the National Emergence Operation Centre meeting, Senior Response Officer, Capt Salim October, revealed that across the coastline, a total distance of approximately 148 kilometres were impacted by the floods, including some 65 communities across the various regions with Three and Five facing the severity of the floods.According to October, the impacts in Region Five were exacerbated by breached sea defence.Nevertheless, he noted that assessments thus far reveal that approximately 400 households were flooded, causing items to be damaged. He added too that affected persons have also suffered the loss of cash crops as well as livestock including poultry and cattle, especially in Region Five.“Salt water accumulation did not only affect homes but the impacts were also to pasture lands that small- and large-scale ruminants are required to graze. There were noted sea defence structure breaches and overtopping of sea and river defences, which would’ve caused heightened levels of erosion. As well as noted, damage to agriculture inputs and by extension, the cascading effect of that is for loss of usual livelihood, and at this point potential livelihood – particularly, compromised rice crops from salt water accumulation,” he was quoted as saying.
‒ over 1000 children benefit from informational talksOver 1000 children from the various youth groups within the Guyana Police Force’s (GPF) A Division turned out at the Force’s 5th annual career day fair on Saturday.Deputy Commissioner Paul Williams and Commander Chapman interacting with some of the youths at the 5th annual A Division career fairThe event, which was held at the Police Sports Club Ground, Eve Leary, under the theme “Empowering positive change through career exploration, think outside the box, sweet success”.Police Commander of A Division, Marlon Chapman boasted that this activity has become one of the hallmarks of initiatives launched by the GPF to reach out to vulnerable youths in a positive way.“It is aimed solely at keeping them away from the street, crime and criminal influences, assisting our efforts to fulfil one of [our] mandates which is to prevent crime, what better way than to achieve this than to go into the communities and offer the youths opportunities?”Children examining equipment used by the Guyana Police ForceEach exhibitor at the fair, he said, had an instrumental role to play in providing the youths with vital information and a possible career path “so that they can grow to become productive members of society. To the members of the Social Crime Prevention Programme, I can assure that senior and junior ranks of this are committed to ensure the success of this programme each year and same will be sustained in the future”.Meanwhile, Deputy Commissioner of the Force, Paul Williams, who represented Commissioner Leslie James at the event, stated that such an initiative is of great importance, not only to A Division but the entire Police Force.He explained that the genesis of this career fair was in 1992 under the stewardship of the late and former Police Commissioner, Laurie Lewis, and at that time the GPF embarked upon engagement with youths especially those who were vulnerable and those the Force wanted to impact in the Tiger Bay, Georgetown area.“Our observation in that neighbourhood is that such an event brought about a reduction of youths moving in the direction in following the patterns of adults who they would have observed involved in criminal and illegal activities.Also, that of itself caused the parents to really truly recognise the importance of working together with the GPF and the impact we made on their children’s lives in a positive direction. Out of that programme, I can say that several of those youths, grown into adulthood, became members of the GPF and still serve in the GPF,” he said.In light of this, the Deputy Commissioner explained that upon recognising the progress of such a venture and noticing the positive impact it brought about, it became mandatory for all of the Commanders across the seven Divisions to move into that direction in relation to the formation of youth groups and scouting groups.“Today, A Division has continued to show its importance and its commitment towards sustaining the development of youths. We, the members of the GPF, recognise that embarking on this journey will help us a lot in terms of making our youths better, give them an opportunity to see there is much more to offer in life rather the community where they just grow up.Also, we help them to embark them upon a changed culture and to realise that where they are born does not create a permanent disposition to what is there for them in the future, and with that engagement we have continued to see a great reduction in crime, we have continued to see a great reduction in crime involving youths…”At Saturday’s event, there were booths from the Guyana Defence Force (GDF), the Guyana Fire Service (GFS), the Guyana Police Force (GPF), Guyana Responsible Parenthood Association (GRPA), Public Health Ministry, GT&T, and E R Burrowes School of Art among others. (Kristen Macklingam)
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The pigeons were the first group to arrive of about 80 birds that were released from Peace River, Alta., at about 9:30 that morning during the fourth and final race of a circuit that is hosted every year by the Rotary Clubs of Dawson Creek.The pigeons are raised by Lance Jones, who has been involved in pigeon races for over 30 years and has raised both provincial and national champions. Each bird is tagged and the first to arrive back inside the coop is declared the winner.Of those birds participating in the final race, 21 had been auctioned off on Sept. 9 during the Rotary’s Sixth Annual Pigeon Race Sponsor Auction Banquet. Participants bid on the racing rights for those birds for the chance to win a percentage of the total raised if their bird finished in the top three in the race on Sunday.- Advertisement -“It was the best year yet for that auction. People were just bidding up like crazy, and it was a lot of fun,” said Sally Schilds, past president of the Rotary Noon Club.She said one bidder spent $1,600 on a bird, while another spent nearly $3,000 for the racing rights to three birds. She said in total, over $15,000 just on the live auction alone.Schilds said unlike the other birds that they sell the racing rights for before the races begin, the ones that were auctioned off on Friday were pre-named by the organizers of the event with names like Soggy Farmer and Money Matters, designed to correspond with the professions of some of the bidders.Advertisement “They try to pick themes that the bidders are going to be excited about,” she said.”A poor little bird called ‘Cream Puff’ didn’t go for very much. I guess there were no bakers there!” she added with a laugh.The evening also included a silent auction featuring about 50 items donated by Rotarians and their friends. There was also a Calcutta auction, an auction for framed prints donated by Rotarian Don Bourassa with Ducks Unlimited, a 50-50 draw, and a raffle for two quilts made by Jackie Reschny that raised over $1,000.”All of the money raised goes towards our projects – big and small,” said Schilds.Advertisement She said those projects may include installing a new bridge over the Dawson Creek where it intersects with the Rotary Walking Trail behind the Dawson Mall, or continuing to support the Mizpah Transition House by donating starter kits for woman fleeing abusive relationships. The Rotary Clubs also hot two community dinners and an Old Fashioned Christmas over the winter months.Schilds said a special thanks goes to the two organizers of this year`s races, Don Bourassa and Jay Luu, to the staff at the George Dawson Inn for the buffet during the banquet, and to the professional auctioneers who volunteered their time to run the live auction – Gary Bratt, and Jeff and Lorne Weaver.
One event has been canceled this weekend. The Horse Drawn Sleigh Rides have been canceled due to the cold weather. All other events are a go as of 3:30 p.m. Friday.- Advertisement –
Former Liverpool and Stoke winger Jermaine Pennant 1 Former Liverpool winger Jermaine Pennant is training with Millwall and hopes to secure a contract with the Championship club until the end of the season.Pennant is looking for a new club after being released by Stoke last season.The 32-year-old, who played a key role in Liverpool’s run to the 2007 Champions League final, has been playing for Pune City in the Indian Super League but is now hoping to get his career back on track in England.Millwall are languishing in the bottom three of the Championship and boss Ian Holloway will need all the experience he can find to help the club move away from the relegation zone.Pennant had a trial with the south London club back in September, but a move could not be finalised at the time.However, a deal could now be completed and the talented winger could go straight into the squad for the league game against Fulham on Saturday.