GECOM must halt House-to- House Registration

first_imgDear Editor,The Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM), the main stakeholder responsible for conducting elections in Guyana, is on the verge of losing confidence from the people of Guyana if it doesn’t put a stop to House-to-House Registration and start preparing for Regional and General Elections by September 18, 2019.To begin with, I have seen that the Government’s Commissioners of GECOM are determined to have H2H Registration, saying that the National Assembly has already approved money for H2H Registration. However, I would like to draw to your attention that after that approval, the Government was faced with a No-Confidence Motion (NCM) on December 21, 2019, where it was defeated by a “majority” and as such, GECOM, by all means, should have started preparations for early elections as stipulated by the Constitution.In addition, the initiation of H2H Registration is also questionable due to the fact that it was directed by the Chief Elections Officer (CEO), whereas it should’ve been a decision made by the Commission, and at that time, GECOM was without a Chair.Furthermore, whilst some are questioning the validity of the current voters’ list, the CEO of GECOM clearly stated that the current voters’ list can be updated by having a period of Claims and Objections, which allow for those who are not registered to get registered and to remove names of dead persons, which in my opinion, is the right path to traverse due to the limited time available.Moreover, I would like to highlight to the general public that the H2H Registration can disenfranchise people from making the voters’ list by: i) Guyanese by birth who live abroad but are still citizens, ii) persons who may not be present at home at the time of the visit by the enumerator. For example, persons may be currently on vacation in another country or due to the fact that there is a lack of employment on the coastal areas of the country, there may be thousands working in the interior.I would like to further bring to your attention that H2H Registration is to create a National Register of registrants 14 years and above, and not a voters’ list.It, therefore, means that H2H Registration is an unnecessary activity aimed at disenfranchising eligible Guyanese and delaying tactics since based on GECOM’s timetable, H2H Registration will run into 2020, which will clearly lead to a non-adherence to the CCJ’s ruling and Article 106 (6), which states “The Cabinet, including the President shall resign if the Government is defeated by the vote of a majority of all the elected members of the National Assembly on a vote of confidence.” Article 106 (7) says “Notwithstanding its defeat, the Government shall remain in office and shall hold an election within three months, or such longer period as the National Assembly shall by resolution supported by not less than two-thirds of the votes of all the elected members of the National Assembly determine, and shall resign after the President takes the oath of office following the election.”In conclusion, I am calling on all Guyanese to boycott the illegal activation of H2H Registration, which is clearly designed to delay elections and deprive Guyanese of their democratic right to elect a Government of their choice.Sincerely,Ranjeev Singhlast_img read more

Ngafuan Warns of Illiteracy Threat to Nation

first_imgForeign Minister Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan has warned that if Liberia does not put an end to illiteracy, it will be illiteracy that will instead put an end to the country.The Foreign Minister used his Commencement Convocation speech at the Salvation Army-run William Booth High School’s 15th Graduation Exercise to caution the nation about the risk of illiteracy.“We must dedicate more and more of our nation’s resources to education, because of a simple and somber truth, if Liberia does not put an end to illiteracy, illiteracy will put an end to the country,” Minister Ngafuan stated amidst applause at a jam-packed ceremony that took place over the weekend at the school’s premises in Paynesville, outside Monrovia.He stressed that schools must build libraries and research centers that are conducive for learning to enable Liberian students compete with the cinemas and the beaches.The Minister then emphasized the need for schools to build ‘fantastic’ reading rooms, and recreation centers that can compete with the ‘fantastic Fridays’ that see Liberian students flood the beaches and alcoholic beverages-filled bars expending their youthful energies and exuberance on things that will accrue little benefits to them in the future.To the graduates, 192 of them styled, ‘Pa-Da-Stra-A-Da-Stra (a German expression meaning, ‘From difficulties to success’), the Foreign Minister said, “My advice to you is to read, read, read, and read. Your commencement today is the first step…My first advice to you is to move on with your education, because acquiring a high school diploma is no guarantee for success in the new Liberia. Do not allow this little success to make you drunk. He added that no one ever finishes book.”He urged them, upon leaving the high school of William Booth, to venture into the ‘hard school of life’.To the parents, he urged them, “never to refrain from engaging their children at all levels of their development, especially during their formative years. Any responsible and caring parent would like to know what kind of peers your children mingle and interact with.”The Valedictorian for the graduates, Reggie Feahn, urged his fellow graduates to match expectations with their level of education.Student Feahn who built his speech on the topic, “Education, The Instrument for Nation Building,” appealed to the government to increase its subsidiaries to private schools, noting that education is the light in darkness, and the foundation on which Liberia will be built.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Central Bank has US$75M excess foreign currency – Dr Ganga

first_imgFollowing last year’s reported crisis regarding the availability of foreign currency in the local market, the Bank of Guyana (BoG) now has an excess of over US$75 million in foreign currency.This was revealed by BoG Governor General, Dr Gobind Ganga during a recent interview with Guyana Times.“Currently, we have almost US$75 million of excess supply of foreign currency in the market with commercial banks, and we are hoping that this excess supply will drag the rates down further than where it is. So, it is not in shortage; there is excess supply of 75 million or more US dollars in the market,” Dr Ganga asserted.BoG Governor General, Dr Gobind GangaHe went on to reiterate that there was, in fact, no shortage in the availability of foreign currency last year.“There was never a situation where there was a shortage. Remember this was because of a number of factors that were impacting this expectation, which was really destabilising expectation, and we have come out of that all because of, once again, the expectations that were being purported out there…,” the BoG Governor General posited.While both the Central Bank and the Government had maintained that there was no foreign currency crisis, several commercial banks and cambio dealers had insisted otherwise, jacking up the exchange rate for US dollars.In fact, business owners had also complained about the apparent foreign currency shortage, saying that they were unable to readily make overseas payments by draft or wire transfer for products and services from overseas. Even citizens had borne the backlash of the crisis by paying high exchange rates.Both Dr Ganga and Finance Minister Winston Jordan had posited that businesses might be hoarding foreign currencies, and commercial banks and cambios were claiming shortages in order to cause customers to resort to paying exorbitant rates for foreign currencies.“The Governor has assured me that he doesn’t know anything about [the shortage], because the banks haven’t approached him for foreign exchange,” Minister Jordan had said on a radio programme during the contrived scarcity of foreign exchange.Usually, when commercial banks experience a shortage, they turn to the Bank of Guyana to purchase the currency to meet demand. But no such approaches were made.While the Central Bank’s Governor General does not foresee a repeat of last year’s situation, financial experts had warned that there could be another such crisis.In fact, former Junior Finance Minister Juan Edghill had said in October that if Government did not curb the excessive spending on international travel by its officials, then the foreign currency reserves at Central Bank would be depleted.During his 2018 Budget presentation back in November, Minister Jordan had said that the Bank of Guyana’s exchange rate for the Guyana Dollar to the US Dollar is expected to remain stable at $206.5 throughout this year, while adding that the US Dollar had appreciated by 1.6 per cent against the Guyanese Dollar.He had noted too that earlier in 2017, the Central Bank had moved to implement countermeasures to prevent manipulation of the foreign exchange rate and to ensure a greater and smoother flow of receipts to the foreign currency market.last_img read more

Diplomats express fears over Granger’s ulterior election motives

first_img…extending time in office will have consequences – Bharrat JagdeoThe international diplomatic community is growing increasingly wary over the machinations of President David Granger with regard to the Guyana Elections Commission (GECOM) and should he be moving to have a repeat of the 1990 experience – when then President Desmond Hoyte had his term in office extended by two years – he will have to face a non-compliant opposition – a situation that could plunge Guyana into a constitutional crisis.This is according to Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo, who on Tuesday raised the issue of a possible ulterior motive on the part of the President and sought to qualify his position by pointing to the seemingly ever-expanding criteria.Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo speaking to the media on TuesdayJagdeo was at the time speaking to members of the media at his Church Street, Georgetown office, where he provided an update on the meetings he held with civil society on Monday last over the submission of a third list of nominees for the post of Chairman of GECOM.Jagdeo also used the opportunity to respond to sentiments expressed by President Granger during his most recent pre-packaged television programme, “The Public Interest” which he dismissed as disingenuous.He told members of the media, “We will never in that sort of atmosphere (outlined by President Granger) be able to have a person selected.”Ulterior motiveJagdeo was reporting on sections of civil society’s lamenting over the requirement to have all six names on any list submitted to be perfect before any of the names are even considered.“Listen to how unreasonable this is…if you have five persons on the list perfect according to his criteria and one person is not, then he will not even start considering the names,” Jagdeo said.According to the Opposition Leader, the strong-arm position adopted by the President flies not only in the face of the Constitution, but it also flies in the face of history and precedence which has been accepted in the past by both the People’s National Congress (PNC) and the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C).Jagdeo suggested he was now of the opinion, as was the case with many that he would have consulted with, that President Granger may very well have an ulterior motive. “I believe that he has an ulterior motive.”The Opposition Leader suggested that by delaying the appointment of a GECOM Chairperson, the President may want to believe that this situation could lead to the delay of the next General and Regional Elections.He recalled a similar experience in 1990, when the PNC’s term in office was extended by two years.Wishful thinkingAccording to Jagdeo, this situation obtained since it was agreed to by the PPP/C, along with the Carter Centre to have the elections delayed in order to sanitise the voters list to remove any doubt over the rigging that had obtained in the years leading up to that election by the then PNC Government.“If he thinks that situation will repeat itself, he is engaged in wishful thinking … if he will delay appointment just to get additional years (in office) he is wrong…. he is not going to find a compliant PPP agreeing to an extending  of his term.”Jagdeo warned that such a situation would lead to a constitutional crisis since the life of Parliament would have to be dissolved on a predetermined date according to the Guyana Constitution.He said should there be no election called at this time, the country would be plunged into a constitutional crisis, since there could be no Budget and further, any agreement inked at that time would be illegal and not recognised on his part.“If he thinks, as some people feel, that this is a plot to delay the elections, then there are consequences,” the Opposition Leader warned.On the matter of his meetings with members of the international diplomatic community, the Opposition Leader said the signals emanating from the Granger Government were sending worrying signals.International concerns“I had discussions with people from the diplomatic community, because of the behaviour of the President on this manner where he is departing so radically and departing from precedence over the years…He (Granger) is raising a lot of concerns internationally about the elections,” Jagdeo said.He told members of the media, “we have started doing work internationally to ensure that the election is free and fair …. people see this in the international community as a strategy”, on the part of the Granger Government.Meanwhile, on his consultation with members of civil society, he reported that the persons who participated in the meetings expressed frustration over the protracted delays and shifting goal-posts on the part of the Executive.“Civil society share same frustration on this matter…many felt the President’s position is unreasonable.”ACDA absentAccording to Jagdeo, the members of civil society expressed the view, “we will never have agreement if he continues to hold to the views that he has publicly expressed and many of them think it’s a waste of time to continue what seems to be a charade of sending names to him when he would capriciously, flippantly dismiss names as not being fit and proper.”Jagdeo reported too that the protracted delay has now led to a waning in enthusiasm of civil society to participate in these activities, since “their views are not going to be taken seriously by Government”.Jagdeo told media operatives, “they and I recognise that it is going to be increasingly hard to find people who would want to put up their names only to put down nationally, publicly by the President.” He did report that among the groups noticeably absent from the consultations was the African Cultural and Development Association (ACDA), which had complained about being sidelined at the first engagement, but was since invited.last_img read more

Reds goalkeeper Reina happy to make Liverpool return

first_img Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina 1 Pepe Reina insists he is happy to return to the fold at Liverpool following his loan at Napoli – despite the fact he is unlikely to dislodge Simon Mignolet as Brendan Rodgers’ No.1 at Anfield.The Spaniard is part of the Reds’ 33-man squad which will fly to the USA on Sunday for their pre-season tour.He had eight years as undisputed first-choice goalkeeper at Anfield but his career at the club appeared to be over when Rodgers brought in Mignolet from Sunderland and loaned Reina to Napoli.And the Liverpool boss cast further doubt over the 31-year-old’s future on Merseyside back in February when he cited the fact he had written a farewell letter to the club’s supporters before heading to Italy last summer.Despite all of this, Reina says he will resume Liverpool duty as a happy man and admits he has nothing to complain about.He told Marca: “I return happy because the people have treated me very well throughout my entire stay at Liverpool and I have nothing to criticise.”Although he impressed at Napoli under his former Liverpool Rafa Benitez, Reina failed to secure a permanent deal to the Serie A side, while his former club Barcelona opted against signing him by moving for Marc-Andre ter Stegen and Claudio Bravo instead.last_img read more


first_imgHUNDREDS of surfers from around Ireland and Europe have descended on Co Donegal today – to ride massive waves from the tidal surge.They are taking to the waters off Bundoran and Rossnowlagh with waves up to 70-ft high.Neil Britton from Finn MacCool Surf School in Rossnowlagh said: “There are people here from all over Europe. “These are unprecedented waves and they are coming here to surf them.”Hotels and B&Bs in the south west of the county are reporting a large rise in bookings as a result of the storm. EUROPEAN SURFERS FLOCK TO DONEGAL TO CATCH TIDAL SURGE WAVES was last modified: January 6th, 2014 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:EUROPEAN SURFERS FLOCK TO DONEGAL TO CATCH TIDAL SURGE WAVESlast_img read more


first_imgAn urgent meeting is to be held by the Donegal Childcare Providers Network due to a discontinuation of complimentary funding.All childcare providers, staff and parents have been urged to attend the meeting at the Clanree Hotel in Letterkenny on Monday, June 11th at 7pm.A spokesman for the DCPN said “Due to the crucial range of supports that Donegal County Childcare Committee provide to the childcare sector in Donegal, we are naturally alarmed at this prospect.” Organisers are hoping a number of public representatives will also attend.“We would urge you, childcare providers, early years educators and parents to attend this meeting as discontinuation of the supports of training, mentoring, advice and support could have a negative impact on all of us and our services,” added the DCPN spokesperson.Anybody who is attending can contact Patricia Fitzpatrick on 086 8561191.  DONEGAL CHILDCARE PROVIDERS, STAFF AND PARENTS URGED TO ATTEND MEETING was last modified: June 6th, 2012 by StephenShare 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 Childcare Providers Networklast_img read more


first_imgThree medical students / summer research fellows linked to Letterkenny General Hospital, the Donegal Clinical Research Academy and University Hospital Galway who identified new potential techniques to reduce the volume of breast removed during conservative breast cancer surgery, from left: David Sciascia, Dearbhla Hillick and Eoghan Shanley with Alison Johnston, Clinical Research Nurse (standing).Three medical students linked to Letterkenny General Hospital, the Donegal Clinical Research Academy and University Hospital Galway have undertaken work to identify new potential techniques to reduce the volume of breast removed during conservative breast cancer surgery.The three sumer research fellows – Dearbhla Hillick, Eoghan Shanley and David Sciascia – have been funded through public donations from members of the public in the North West.The students are working under the supervision of Ms Alison Johnston, Clinical Research Nurse and Mr Michael Sugrue, Lead Clinician and Consultant Breast Surgeon at LGH. They students have identified new techniques of breast volume measurement leading to patent filing and acceptance of their work at the American Society of Clinical Oncology Meeting in San Francisco.Mr Sugrue commented, “Letterkenny Hospital has a low re-excision rate following breast conservative surgery in line with international best practice and this is monitored regularly. The findings of the students’ research are significant and I’m very happy with the progress the research programme is making”.This is the third consecutive year that the Letterkenny Hospital Breast Unit has undertaken a research fellowship programme for the summer, with a small stipend for the research fellows funded through generous donations from the community.Letterkenny Hospital is a satellite to the designated cancer centre in Galway and is making a significant contribution to advancing clinical breast research in Ireland. Mr Michael Sugrue and the team, with Dr Duffy, Consultant Oncologist; Dr McGowan, Consultant Radiologist; Dr O’Dowd, Consultant Pathologist; Dr Salib, Consultant Radiation/Oncology and Geraldine MacGregor, Breast Nurse Specialist, have established one of the first courses in the world for teaching multi disciplinary breast cancer care to health professionals.This exciting one-day programme is being organised by the Donegal Clinical Research Academy and will take place on Friday 15 August.Three international guest speakers will attend including Dr Sandra Brennan from Sloan-Kettering in the United States, Petrousjka van den Tol from the Netherlands and Professor Koji Yamashita from Japan. LETTERKENNY HOSPITAL STUDENTS LEADING THE WAY IN BREAST CANCER SURGERY RESEARCH was last modified: August 14th, 2014 by StephenShare 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:breast surgerycancerdonegalLetterkenny General Hospitallast_img read more

Drake Hosts Annual Golf Classic At Talons Of Tuscany

first_imgTeams took advantage of the ideal conditions Tuesday to post low scores across the board. The winning team from Wellmark of Chris Verlengia, Andy Verlengia, Jim Verlengia and Scotts Helms claimed the team title with a score of 131. The second flight of the field was won by Mary Brooks, Linda Craig, Kathy Optl and Linda Weidmaier with a score of 152. For the 10th time, Bulldog supporters enjoyed an afternoon of play at the lush Talons of Tuscany. The pristine course is owned by one of Drake’s biggest supporters, Mr. Dennis Albaugh. Mr. Albaugh generously allows the Drake athletics department the opportunity to host its annual golf tournament, which serves as one of the department’s biggest fundraisers. Eric Boehlert was the individual winner of the Classic with a score of 66 to earn the coveted Blue Jacket awarded to the low-score of the tournament. Last year’s winner, Scott Helms, awarded him the Blue Jacket. ANKENY, Iowa – The annual Drake Golf Classic was played under pristine blue skies at one of Iowa’s most exclusive golf courses, the Talons of Tuscany, in Ankeny, Iowa, Tuesday, June 6. Awards were also given for long drives and longest putt with Steve Nellis claiming longest putt, Evan Summer hitting the men’s longest drive and Kathy Optl belting the women’s long drive. For more information about the 2018 Drake Golf Classic at The Talons of Tuscany, contact Austin Strawhacker ( Print Friendly Versionlast_img read more


first_imgA Donegal driving instructor has come up with a unique method of promoting this year’s Road Safety Christmas Message.Diane Harvey has went the extra mile to help get the message of safety across to drivers.A series of brief video clips has been recorded by members of the local community, emphasising different aspects of road safety.The idea is the brainchild of D’ School of Motoring in Killybegs. There are messages from local bikers, a Garda Sergeant, a road accident survivor, a newly-qualified young driver, a psychologist who deals with young drivers referred by the Courts Service, and a local County Councillor.Since establishing D’s School of Motoring nearly three years ago, Diane Harvey has made road safety her priority. Her objective is simply to save lives and, with her, this is not a short-term campaign; it is a lifetime project, day-in, day-out, at her work, online or socialising.“I was delighted with the response I received when I asked members of the community to get involved”, said proprietor, Diane Harvey. “I firmly believe that communities working together saves lives.She added: “Everyone involved has given their time and effort voluntarily. I am very grateful to each and every one of them, especially Evan Bourke and Kevin McCloskey of Minute Hand Media, who produced the videos. “I would make a special appeal to businesses and others with websites and facebook pages to link to these videos and help spread the road safety message. These are real people, real stories, real lives. And I believe they can make a real difference”, said Diane.Individual clips will be released every couple of days between now and the New Year. And, as well as being available on D’s School of Motoring Road Safety Christmas Campaign facebook page, the messages can be viewed on YouTube. DONEGAL DRIVING INSTRUCTOR’S UNIQUE BID TO SAVE LIVES THIS CHRISTMAS was last modified: December 23rd, 2014 by StephenShare 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)last_img read more