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‘Cross Border Energy Will Support Economic Development in West Africa’

first_imgSay African Leaders; Break Ground for the CLSG Interconnection ProjectThe first cross-border energy supply between Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea (CLSG) that will support economic development, reduce the need to use expensive generators and allow existing and future hydropower projects to benefit the region has commenced with the ground breaking for its interconnection project.President Ellen Johnson of Liberia led the historic ground breaking of the energy project. Joining her were her counterparts from Côte d’Ivoire, President Alassane Ouattara; Sierra Leone, President Ernest Bai Koroma; and Guinea, President Alpha Condé.Donor partners, contractors and other high-level officials from ECOWAS, the CLSG countries and the international community were in attendance, according to a CLSG press release.“We are pleased for this project. As many of you know, as ECOWAS proceeds to transform our economy, power has been identified as one of our main constraints. For Liberia, power is the one thing that has made a difference in the deterioration in the quality of life in all areas, as power supports education, health, industry, security and the comfort of life,” President Johnson Sirleaf said in her opening remarks.President Sirleaf maintains the CLSG project will bring to the beneficiary countries a big relief and that for those countries emerging, it will enable them to move at a faster pace in achieving their development goals.She described the CLSG project as a major impetus for development in Côte d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. “As we break grounds, all four of us as leaders of the CLSG countries, give to TRANSCO CLSG our fullest commitment and support to see that this project moves as quickly as possible in reaching the goals that have been set.”Once operational the CLSG Interconnector will ensure that communities across the four countries can access affordable electricity.“Hard work by African and international partners over recent years have ensured that essential technical and financial preparations, based on international best practice, could be completed and the construction phase of the scheme proceed. CLSG Transco looks forward to continuing this close cooperation over the years to come,” confirmed Mohammed M. Sherif, Director General of TRANSCO CLSG.The regional importance of the CLSG project was highlighted at a ground-breaking ceremony in the Liberian capital, Monrovia, attended by the heads of state of Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea and local and international partners involved in the project.In Sierra Leone and Liberia less than 5 percent of inhabitants have access to electricity and recent conflict in the region severely damaged existing infrastructure and hindered development of new networks. The new interconnector is also expected to significantly reduce use of diesel and heavy fuel oil generators.The European Investment Bank is providing a EUR 75 million 25-year loan for the EUR 370 million CLSG Interconnector project that is also being financed by the African Development Bank, World Bank and KfW, as well as the four countries involved.The EU-Africa Infrastructure Trust Fund is also providing grant funding totaling EUR 27 million that will support technical assistance for engineering, feasibility studies and rural electrification. It will also reduce the loan repayment costs thereby allowing transmission tariffs to remain lower.The European Investment Bank has supported regional energy investment through development and expansion of the West African Power Pool since 2005 and financed rehabilitation of the Mount Coffee hydropower facility in Liberia and Sierra Leone.Over the last decade the European Investment Bank has provided more than EUR 7.5 billion for energy investment across Africa.The European Investment Bank (EIB) is the long-term lending institution of the European Union owned by its member states. It makes long-term finance available for sound investment in order to contribute towards EU’s policy goals.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

DONEGAL WOMAN IN BOSTON OFFERS HER HOME TO STRANDED RUNNERS

first_imgA DONEGAL woman in Boston has offered her home to any Irish runners stranded in the city after the double bombing at the marathon yesterday.Nuala Friel-Wright was at work yesterday when the bombs went off, killing three people and injuring more than 150 others.“I’d be more than happy to help out anyone from home who is stuck due to the bombing,” Nuala told Donegal Daily. “The city is just in shock today. People are still trying to take it all in.“Boston was enjoying marathon day when this happened and it is just awful. The emergency services did an amazing job.“I’d like to help if I can, so if there are Donegal Daily readers who are stuck who can’t get to their hotels or accommodation to contact the site and I’d be happy to help.”Fanad woman Nuala said she had been at the finish line for previous marathons but had to work yesterday. American authorities now believe this was a domestic terrorist incident.In Dorchester residents gatheredt at Tavolo Restaurant in memory of 8-year-old Martin Richard, who was killed in the attack, and his mother and sister, who suffered grievous injuries. Martin’s father, Bill, is a community leader in the Ashmont section of Dorchester. A third child was reportedly uninjured.“They are beloved by this community,” said City Councilor at Large Ayanna Pressley, who was among the mourners. “They contribute in many ways. That’s why you see this outpouring. It’s surreal, it’s tragic’’A massive investigation was underway Monday night under the direction of the FBI, as much of the Back Bay was locked down to protect the sprawling crime scene. Last night, officials called the investigation “very active and fluid.” Authorities were questioning at least one person at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, said sources familiar with the situation. Police Commissioner Edward F. Davis said no one was in custody. DONEGAL WOMAN IN BOSTON OFFERS HER HOME TO STRANDED RUNNERS was last modified: April 16th, 2013 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:DONEGAL WOMAN IN BOSTON OFFERS HER HOME TO STRANDED RUNNERSlast_img read more

African Union choose new chairperson

first_imgChadian Foreign Minister Moussa Faki Mahamat has been chosen as the new chairperson of the African Union Commission. Mahamat replaces South Africa’s Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.Chad’s foreign minister, Moussa Faki Mahamat, who has more than 30 years of diplomatic and political experience, replaces South Africa’s Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma as chairperson of the African Union Commission on 30 January 2017. (Image: African Union)CD AndersonChad’s Moussa Faki Mahamat will take over as the chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission, which comprises African heads of state and government who form the Assembly of the AU.The decision was finalised at a gathering of the 54 AU member states on 30 January 2017 at the organisation’s headquarters in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. In the final round of voting, Mahamat got 39 votes to beat Kenyan diplomat Amina Mohammed for the post.Mahamat, who has more than 30 years of diplomatic and political experience, replaces South Africa’s Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, who became the first woman to lead the Commission in 2013.Chad’s foreign minister since 2008, Mahamat served as the country’s prime minister before that. He also served as chair of the AU’s Economic, Social and Cultural Council. His recent political career is notable for its fervent fight against Islamist militants in Central Africa.Ghanaian ambassador Thomas Kwesi Quartey was elected deputy chairperson.In his first address as commission chair, Mahamat pledged to place development and security at the top of his agenda and streamline the organisation’s bureaucracy.He highlighted the AU’s need for strong leadership and a “refocus on the basics”. His ultimate goal, as he emphasised in the run-up to his election, was to have “the sound of guns… drowned out by cultural songs and rumbling factories”.In the last rounds of voting, Mahamat went head-to-head in a close race with Mohamed, Kenya’s foreign minister, the other favourite.Conceding defeat, the Kenyan delegation, however, was the first to offer its congratulations and support the new AU chair, saying in a statement that the country would “work with (Mahamat) to defend the pan-African agenda of integration for Africa, as well as democracy, sovereignty and prosperity for all of its people”.Source: African Union websiteWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

Why the Hard Close Isn’t Working

first_img Get the Free eBook! Learn how to sell without a sales manager. Download my free eBook! You need to make sales. You need help now. We’ve got you covered. This eBook will help you Seize Your Sales Destiny, with or without a manager. Download Now The salesperson was struggling to “close” his prospect’s business. The presentation went well, and the prospect understood the value the solution would create for her. But at the end of the call, when the sales person asked his prospect to buy, she hedged. She said “I’d like to think it over. Can you get back to me next week?”The salesperson’s manager insisted that his team push hard to close. The salesperson, doing what he was directed to do, pushed the prospect. He said, “You need this. Your business needs this. If you don’t do this now, you know you never will. What credit card are you going to put this on.” That failed, and he tried again with even more aggressive language.The last thing the salesperson heard was the sound of his proactive client hanging up.How to Lose a DealThe sales manager is wrong. He’s not wrong for directing that his salespeople ask for the business at the end of their presentation. He is wrong in believing that the hard close is the right strategy for winning business.Attempting to push the prospect into buying screams self-orientation. This approach ensures that the prospect knows that this deal is all about the salesperson and their company and that it has very little to do with serving her or her needs. The sales manager is trying to use a sledgehammer to turn a doorknob; you may get the door open, but you’ll break it in the process.Equally important, ignoring a prospect’s real needs is no way to win customers. The prospect isn’t ready to buy because she has concerns. She’s concerned about spending the money. She’s not sure she is going to use the product enough to capture the value. She doesn’t know what her partner is going to say. Whatever her concern, for her it is real.No one needs time to make a better decision. They need more information. Pretending that the prospect’s concerns aren’t real or that it isn’t your job to resolve those concerns is one way to alienate would-be clients while ensuring that they tell everyone they know that your name belongs right behind Hitler’s, Stalin’s, and Mao’s.Not Liked or TrustedNo one has to buy from you. They’re going to buy from someone they know, like, and trust. It’s a poor strategy to make people know they don’t like or trust you.Force is the choice of those who are truly weak. Influence is the choice of the powerful.last_img read more

Three doctors convicted under PCPNDT Act

first_imgA court here sentenced three doctors to three years in jail in a 2009 sex-determination and female foeticide case. Judicial Magistrate First Class Prachi Patel on Monday convicted Sushma Trivedi, Sandhya Tiwari and S.K. Shrivastava under the Pre-Conception and Pre-Natal Diagnostic Techniques (PCPNDT) Act, public prosecutor Ritesh Goyal said.₹5,000 fine The doctors were given three years’ imprisonment and the court slapped a fine of ₹5,000 on two of them — Sandhya Tiwari and S.K. Shrivastava — for running clinics without legal permission, he said.Mr. Goyal said a Delhi-based social organisation called Beti Bachao Samiti had conducted a sting operation separately on these three doctors in May 2009. In the sting operation, these doctors agreed to carry out sex-determination and female foeticide procedures in their clinics, he said. The organisation approached the District Collector with the recording of the sting operation, who directed the Chief Medical and Health Officer to file a case against the three under the PCPNDT Act, he said. The court found them guilty under section 23 of the PCPNDT Act.last_img read more

Stadia built for IX Asiad in New Delhi lay echoingly empty and idle

first_imgThe Talkatora diving pool: Financial burdenOnce they resounded to the cheers of packed crowds. Today, the stadia built at such enormous expense for the IX Asiad are echoingly empty, and maintenance expenditure estimated at half the country’s sports budget for the year is being used up to keep them in,The Talkatora diving pool: Financial burdenOnce they resounded to the cheers of packed crowds. Today, the stadia built at such enormous expense for the IX Asiad are echoingly empty, and maintenance expenditure estimated at half the country’s sports budget for the year is being used up to keep them in perfect condition – and idle.Last fortnight, the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium – 75,000 seats and 641 rooms spread over 110 acres was used for the first time since the November Games when veteran Asian athletes sweated on the track with only a couple of hundred spectators in the stands.The fully air-conditioned Indraprastha Indoor Stadium, which can seat 25,000, has been used for just one sports meet by the Taekwondo Sports Federation for two days in February. The Talkatora pool complex has been lifeless since December 1982.Perhaps the most pathetic plight is that of the Talkatora pool, where not a single swimmer has turned up since the Games. Says Satya Narayana, chief engineer, New Delhi Municipal Committee (NDMC) and in charge of the complex: “For two weeks after the Games we kept the water heated hoping that someone would come to use it. But no one did.” The heating has been turned off but the water continues to be filtered.When the capital’s most popular football tournaments – the DCM and the Durand – were held some time ago, the venue continued to be the Ambedkar Stadium (capacity: 18,000) rather than the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium where the Asiad football matches were held. A spokesman for the Sports Department said that this was because the fans would have had “transport problems”.advertisement Says R.K.Gupta, president of the Delhi Football Association: “What to talk of using the Nehru Stadium, after the Asiad renovation of the Ambedkar Stadium the rates have been hiked here as well, making it impossible to use it for the football league matches as in the past.”High Charges: One reason for the empty stadia is the forbidding rates. At present, only the Delhi Development Authority (DDA), which built the Rs 26 crore indoor stadium and now runs it, has fixed rates for its charge: sports bodies must pay Rs 39,000 per day in summer and Rs 15,000 per day in winter; government agencies and charitable organisations Rs 1 lakh per day in summer and Rs 76,000 per day in winter, commercial organisations Rs 1.52 lakh per day in summer and Rs 1.28 lakh per day in winter.The Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium: High maintenance costsThe DDA engineer in charge of the stadium considers these rates reasonable; says he: “If you consider my indirect costs which include interest rates at 10 per cent and depreciation at 2 per cent then the costs work out to Rs 2.5 crore a year.To break even on my indirect costs I would have to charge Rs 1.25 lakh a day; if you add direct charges then it becomes necessary to charge Rs 2 lakh a day.” He says that the stadium’s maintenance costs work out to around Rs 50 lakh a year and electricity and water charges to another Rs 40 lakh. Forty people in three shifts look after the security – the contract has been given to a private firm.With such high maintenance costs the rates have to be high, although the DDA has thoughtfully offered half-rates to those using only half the stadium. But so far, there have been few takers. Besides the Taekwondo Sports Federation, six non-sports bodies have hired the hall, three of them for film star ‘nite’ shows.Asks V.K. Malhotra, president of the Indian Archery Federation: “With rates as high as these, which sports federation would think of using the stadium?” The steep rates for users not connected with sports also make it unlikely that there will ever be regular bookings.The chief engineer notes that whether the stadium is used or not a minimum charge has in any case to be paid to the electricity undertaking as the stadium consumes 6,000 kw in summer and 1,500 kw in winter when in full use.Another reason why the stadia are unused is that the equipment and playing area are considered too sophisticated to be used by all comers. The National Stadium was refitted with astroturf which requires a special watering system; says K. Basu, director, maintenance, Special Organising Committee (SOC): “Ordinary teams can’t be allowed to use astroturf. It is like giving a sitar meant for Ravi Shankar to a fresher.”A spokesman for the Sports Department says: “The organisers of the hockey nationals held recently in Meerut did not ask for the ground, perhaps because it would have meant the use of special shoes, special balls and more stamina would have been required. But the astroturf has been used for the Indian women’s hockey team practice matches.”advertisementIn the same way, joggers, athletes and gymnasts cannot use the Nehru Stadium. Observes S.K. Chawla of the Central Public Works Department (CPWD), superintending engineer of the stadium: “It would be a security risk and in any case one has to ensure that special shoes with spikes no more than 6 mm long are used so that the tracks are not spoilt.” The Delhi University grounds were enclosed within a tall fence for the handball and archery events – not very popular sports in India – and are now out of bounds to the joggers and gymnasts who used the grounds in the past.Swollen Costs: But the stadia have to be kept in condition whether they are used or not. Chawla estimates that the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium would cost about Rs 65 lakh a year to maintain, assuming that it will be in active use 120 days in a year.He explains that when the stadium” is in use, expense on electricity, water and staff increases enormously – often, extra staff has to be recruited. Not included in the estimate are the 80 men of the Central Reserve Police Force who guard vital installations such as the lighting towers, the public address system and the score-board.In fact, Sports Minister Buta Singh, replying to a question in Parliament in February, admitted that the maintenance, minus the operational expenses of just the two main stadia and the swimming pools, would work out to Rs 1.2 crore a year. Later, at a sports Ministry meeting on March 2, the caretaker organizations – DDA, CPWD and NDMC – were asked to submit revised estimates for maintaining the stadia according to what a spokesman calls “international standards”. The annual cost of maintenance and limited operational usage then works out about Rs 2.5 crore, for just the big three. If the other Asiad legacies are added, the cost rises to a whopping Rs 3 crore.Big Drain: Compared to national sports budgets, the stadia maintenance costs are staggering. The, national expenditure on sports was just Rs 2.69 crore in 1980 – 81, Rs 3.06 crore in 1981 – 82,and Rs 4.90 crore in 1982 – 83. For the year 1983 – 84 the budget has been hiked to Rs 6.36 crore.The amount allotted for the upkeep of the three sports institutes at Patiala, Bangalore and Calcutta is Rs 3 crore which is about the same as the maintenance cost of the Asiad stadia. As against this, grants to various state sports councils for 1983 – 84 will be around Rs 80 lakh, and grants to national sports federations around Rs 90 lakh.The Government has also to work out the ticklish question of who is to ultimately manage the stadia. At present the agencies that built them are doing the job on the understanding that the expenses will eventually be reimbursed.The SOC, which was in charge of sports grounds during the Asiad, says it is no longer concerned. Says K.S. Bains, additional secretary-general, SOC: “We will be winding up 90 per cent of our operations by the end of March. It is no longer our problem.”advertisementThe hope is that eventually a sports authority will come into being to mother the facilities. But, as the debate continues, it is now clear that when the grey pachyderms from Kerala left Delhi after taking part in the Asian Games ceremonies, they left some spotless white brethren behind.last_img read more

The top 10 dance shows that moved Toronto in 2016

first_imgAdvertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Twitter If I can draw any conclusions from Toronto’s year in dance, I’d say that inventive work on secondary stages delivered more than any large-scale, expensive hedging of bets. But there were heartening surprises. You’ll find the newest and oldest works in the National Ballet’s repertoire among my top 10, both beautiful revelations for me. Then Matthew Jocelyn has remained committed to programming serious and ambitious dance at Canadian Stage. And Mark Hammond keeps giving us first-rate international offerings at the Sony Centre – not least of which has been the hugely successful (and affordable: $15 a seat) Fall for Dance North festival.When anyone tries to tell me there’s no audience for contemporary mixed programs, I relate the time I heard a sold-out Sony Centre (3,000 people) holler and cheer for new choreography like they were swigging beer at the ball game – three nights in a row. The problem with contemporary programming isn’t the lack of an audience; it’s the price of the tickets.It goes without saying that Toronto has a world-class ballet company and an excellent, nearly 50-year-old modern-dance company (Toronto Dance Theatre). But, with the exception of ProArteDanza and Coleman Lemieux & Company, there’s nothing Toronto-made on my list this year that falls on the spectrum in between. I think this is the upshot of a stubbornness from both camps: a ballet company determined to please its audience and a contemporary-dance community determined to please itself – and then zero collaboration between them. Advertisement Login/Register With: Facebook The classical/contemporary rift in this city has us looking increasingly parochial, and not just from the distance of dance meccas such as New York, Tel Aviv and Brussels, but from Vancouver and Montreal. So one wish for 2017: more collaboration in Toronto.1. A Picture of You Falling – Crystal Pite, Fall for Dance North, the Sony CentreBritish Columbia-born Pite topped my list last year with her staggering Betroffenheit. This year, Toronto audiences finally got to see her Olivier Award-winning duet about the end of a relationship. Pite’s ability to conjure despair is like sorcery to me, as is the way her movement seems to extend so far beyond the dramatic moment it exists in. When dancer Anne Plamondon spins away from her lover (Peter Chu), it’s as though we can see the effects of that turn rippling through time.2. The Dreamers Ever Leave You – Robert Binet, the National Ballet/Art Gallery of OntarioBinet is innovating from inside a classical lexicon and has an architectural instinct for lines and lifts. I think that’s partially what made his immersive work at the AGO, set to the mellifluous piano of Lubomyr Melnyk, so special. Dreamers had all the pure, mute, spiritual power of high classicism, but then reimagined with a contemporary interest in fluctuation and proximity. I listened to a woman beside me grab her date and exclaim: “This is SO beautiful.” I couldn’t have agreed more. There was a sense of forbidden pleasure in getting that close to such sublimity.last_img read more