Friday December 29, 2017
THE ACHIEVEMENTS OF SOME CITY COUNCILLORS
DEAR EDITOR, Kindly permit us, the Councillors of Constituency Two, Kitty North and Subryanville, to highlight some of our major achievements for the year 2017. To begin with, we have completed the cleaning, clearing and rehabilitation of Farnum’s Play Field in Subryanville to the cost of $2.5 million. This project was undertaken under the Councillor’s initiative of “doing positive things on the field and abstaining from negative things on the streets”. Major financial support in this regard came from Businessman Mr. Sudama Ramlingum of New Trend Auto and Transmission, as well as from Ms. Stacey French of Mae’s School who contributed $100,000. The members of the Northern Rangers Football Club benefitted from this project tremendously. They were able to reach the Semi Finals of the Corona Beer Invitational Football Tournament because of the upgrade in this training facility
among other support through this initiative. Letters were written and petitions were submitted to the Ministry of Public Infrastructure and other Organisations seeking assistance for the following projects; · The Rehabilitation of Queen Street · Pere Street between Clive Lloyd Drive and Public Road · Owen Street · Goring’s Avenue · Construction of the bridge in the vicinity of AFC Headquarters that link Kitty and Campbellville · The cleaning, clearing and desilting of Dowding, Sandy Bobb and Shell Road Alley ways among other projects. · The cleaning, clearing of Gordon, Pike and Thomas Streets Burial Grounds and have drains dug in them to prevent waterlogging and breeding of mosquitoes that are plaguing our residents. · Assistance for the completion of the Construction of the Kitty Market. · The resuscitation of Kitty Welfare and Burial
Society. We are pleased to inform the public that as a constituency, we received much needed support from the Ministry of Public Infrastructure. The aforementioned bridge is presently under construction, major drainage works and clearing of Alley ways, canals are currently being undertaken in Kitty North and Subryanville by small contractors and Residents of Kitty. However, while we express sincere gratitude to the Ministry of Public Infrastructure and by extension the Government of Guyana for the support in 2017, we shall be grateful if the outstanding projects abovementioned can be undertaken in 2018, in collaboration with the Georgetown Municipality because the harsh reality is, the City Council cannot afford to undertake all these projects due to Financial constraints. Yours faithfully, Carlyle Goring Councillor Constituency Number Two
WHEN THE POWER FAILS AT CHRISTMAS TIME
DEAR EDITOR, Christmas is a most inconvenient time to have electricity problems, particularly if cooking is involved. Some years ago, I experienced this in London, in the middle of cooking the Christmas lunch of chicken and all the trimmings, but gas was involved. I noted the time of the failure, which turned out to be crucial - apparently everyone in the district was doing the same thing at the same time. I have not made that mistake since. Since, I start cooking very early in the morning. My Christmas cake (black cake to Guyanese, rich fruit cake to Brits) is baked and decorated at least a week in advance, ‘fed’ daily with a drizzle of rum over the top. By the end of Boxing Day it is all gone. The Christmas cake should be the first item seen to, ripening is great. To be caught out in the midst of preparing Christmas lunch is not a happy experience. And being on one’s own on Christmas Day need not be joyless. I spent at least four such in Guyana in the 1990s and without a phone - no communication whatsoever - alone but not lonely. After lunch, I did chores that were left undone in the lead-up, watched TV
and read. I did what my gran regularly advised my older brother and me to do - I made my own play. Poor Guyanese children have to be trained from an early age to get together and “make their own play” cobble together safe bits and pieces of stuff and create your own toys. Girls can make small dolls from leftover cloth. Shape the body of the doll, and then pack it with scraps
of cloth or strong paper (a good way for dressmakers to dispose of scraps). May we all successfully survive 2018! Geralda D.
Guyana Goldfields is an exploitative employer DEAR EDITOR, Guyana Goldfields is the premiere gold-mining company in Guyana; and from the posts in the media, has been experiencing a great level of success. Hence, it is surprising to hear from employees, about the treatment meted out to them. Let me start with the Christmas bonus. Those employees work away from home for 28 days, no days’ off in between, yet the company saw it fit not to give them a Christmas bonus! Instead it gave them a small portion of what is supposed to be their quarterly bonus, and promised to give them the rest in January, 2018. Many of the employees received $20,000 on their salaries. What is $20,000 in this country, at this time of the
year? Those people sacrifice their families and friends to work hard and yet they are unable to give their families a decent Christmas. Shame on Guyana Goldfields! Another issue is that of meals for employees on the night shift. They told the employees that once they are on the night shift they are not allowed to eat lunch. They have breakfast, sleep through lunch, but return for dinner! Why? Because the employees are getting too fat and it’s too expensive to feed them three times a day! Have you ever heard of such foolishness? That’s modern day slavery. There is no union to represent employees’ rights. And if at any time an employee voices concern over the working conditions,
the company finds a reason to terminate him. So people keep quiet for fear of victimisation. Guyana Goldfields promised to give pay increases based on appraisals. Only a portion of the workers received any, even though the majority of them had excellent appraisals! Why? When the PSC recommended a 26% increase for private sector employees, Guyana Goldfields didn’t even give 10. This is ridiculous! As for the payment day...; that’s the biggest joke...! The company says that they pay on Wednesdays. Many times there’s no money in the employees’ accounts until Friday afternoon; sometimes until Thursday night. People Continued on page 6
There’s a potential health problem in Enmore DEAR EDITOR, I am writing to inform those in authority of a very unhealthy development in the village of Enmore, East Coast Demerara. We are approaching the end of December moreso the end of the year and to date, there has been no garbage collection by the NDC. As a matter of fact, I cannot recall any garbage collection done for the month so far. What I found to be gross disrespect towards us, the rates and taxpayers, is that
the garbage tractor can be seen rendering services to an overseas resident who was hosting a party in the village. What I find very ridiculous is that the upkeep of the garbage tractor is done by our rates and taxes and yet still we cannot get the usage of its services. I am hoping that someone
in authority can intervene and bring us, the residents of Enmore some relief. Can anyone believe that this is the Christmas season and our yards have piles of garbage? We have our children in the yard coupled with the high influx of flies. Yours sincerely, Randy
Friday December 29, 2017
A tribute to Ms. Sybil Patterson The psychology behind pardoning some criminals DEAR EDITOR, President Granger, on December 23, 2017, pardoned a few prisoners. And if I had to criticize our President for anything, it would be for him not granting more pardons. I understand that some would cry that criminals are being released, but have they examined the “why” of the “crimes” of these young people? Do not get me wrong; the criminals who murder our elderly, ravage and kill our children must without respite bear the brunt of the law that includes capital punishment. However, there are young people who have been led astray because they were never taught morality. Every incarcerated youth is a reflection of our failure to teach them what is right. Each of their lives is a loss that Guyana will never redeem. One should examine the difficulties faced by the young. They are steeped in the visuals of bling and sex (materialism and carnality) via the ubiquitous entertainment industry. Gone are the days when youths read books, comic books and watched movies that depict the pathos of making sacrifice to do what is right and the negative consequences of following one’s desires. I try to depict this in my poem from The Hinterlands: The Deportee Barefooted boys gaze at his so white and so new tee shirt with the lizard-cool Snoop Dog. Yes, he is from Stateside with firsthand knowledge of Jay Z and the poetry of Tupac. When a dreadlock escapes the on-backward Kangol, he touches it with goldringed fingers and adjusts
the gold cross as he explains Shaq’s jealousy of Kobe. His Phat pants’ tucked into untied Timberlands. Pulled from the trench and stretched on the dam, the soggy track-suit makes him a bed of mud. Above his head, hands, gray and wrinkled as if wrapped in wet Band-Aids, are caught by his dreadlocks, Rolex and AK 47 on its sling. Bulging all-white eyes stare at the sun. A snail clings to a lobe and feculent scum oozes from the gaping mouth. People, hands masking them, stare at the carrion that robbed, terrorized and carri’ on. Finally, someone breaks the silence: But he wearin’ some really nice boots. At the end of the poem, instead of the people noting the thief dying as a consequence of the debauched life he chose, his “expensive boots” are noted. The young are being indoctrinated in the deportee’s philosophy, so I cannot fault young people for going astray. They learn from what they see. And they see some of our self-serving politicians, who should be the standard bearers of honesty and justice, mushy in their pride, gluttony, avarice and over-indulgence. Having failed our young people who went astray through our neglect, indifferent governance and weak education, don’t we owe them a chance, after their punishment and lesson learned, at a life that will better them and our country? Sincerely, Stanley Niamatali
When the police failed the church DEAR SIR, It is with great displeasure that I write this letter to you about an issue regarding noise nuisance. The Priest and Parishioners of All Saints’ Anglican Church in New Amsterdam had to suffer once again at our Christmas Mass held on 24th December, 2017 because of
the deafening sounds emanating from the music sets around our church. This happened despite the Priest in Charge of the Church sending a letter of request to the Commander of “B” Division, who always boasts of having the Division under control, has the public interest at heart and is open to complaints.
When we pause and experience silence, we discover answers that activity does not have time to reveal. During your day, take threeminute “vacations”. Relax and re-energise. Take time out to feel the peace of silence.
The Police were out in their numbers directing traffic and blocking portions of the Main Street but the music sets were blaring on the makeshift bars and BBQ tents. All that we had asked was for ninety minutes of peace and tranquility. Parishioners who were in Church made numerous phone calls to the Police but to no avail. It leaves one to wonder who you can depend on. After all, it was Christmas and Christ is the reason for the season. Yours sincerely Concerned Parishioner
DEAR EDITOR, Please accept my gratitude for enabling me to publicly express sincere condolence on behalf of family members and former colleagues at the passing of Ms.Sybil Patterson, retired Senior Lecturer in the Social Work Unit of the University of Guyana. I first met this remarkable social worker in 1959 when I visited my brother who was stationed at the Suddie Office of the Ministry of Agriculture. By sheer coincidence, she and her fellow officer, the late Mr.C.E.Smith, had arranged a meeting with the local community leaders in an effort to stimulate participation in the planned community development programme. I could not help being struck by the zeal and enthusiasm which she exhibited. About two years later, I joined the clerical staff at the Head Office of the Social Welfare Department, and Ms. Patterson had been located. We got to know each other well, and I found her to be extremely friendly and generous in her advice and
encouragement to younger staff members. She regularly enquired of us to what studies we were undertaking, and about our future educational plans. It was at the University of Guyana that I came to realise how devoted she was to her profession. She and the late Mr. Frank Pollard were seconded there to develop the Social Work Diploma course so that persons in that field could be trained in Guyana, rather than overseas. Ms.Patterson set about this task assiduously, and sought to recruit students from both government and non-government organisations, voluntary and professional workers, through imaginative and aggressive outreach. She organised courses during the long vacation in order to help some persons to qualify. She mounted short programmes in specialised fields. Equally important was the utilisation of her regional and international contacts to help in the equipping of staff members. She was quite popular among her Caribbean colleagues as well as British
and North American associates and conducted research and projects with them. Her involvement with the Commonwealth Youth Programme touched youths along the entire coastland, inspiring many of them to exemplary achievement. Through all of her many accomplishments, I found one of her most memorable traits to be her attitude towards the junior and ancillary staff to whom she related. At UG, ‘Miss P’, as she was affectionately known, was always willing to go out of her way to help. She was one of the foundermembers, and served as President, of the university’s Credit Union. She counselled, and encouraged them through so many problems. I read somewhere that ‘heaven and hell is a matter of what people who knew you well, say about you after you die’. By this standard, I know where Miss Patterson is resting now. May she do so in peace! Respectfully, Michael Parris
I offer PPP supporters a political platform for their interests in 2020 DEAR EDITOR, Please publish my response to Ori’s letters dated Dec 21/17 (SN) and Dec 25/17 (KN). The editors of Stabroek News find it editorially judicious to continue publishing lies and propaganda, of which they are fully well aware, of a known blow-hard of the PPP, Vishnu Bisram (SN Dec 25/17). I find it inconceivable that they fail to recognise that they are allowing their publication to be used to spread misinformation and misrepresentations of the truth, and that they are also ultimately responsible for continuing the intellectual oppression of the populace with this misinformation, which ultimately feed the
suboptimal outcomes at our national elections. Even if Bisram has made strong points, this is artfully done to perpetrate his flawed message of Jagdeo as a leader of substance. It is impossible for rational individuals to consider Jagdeo in any leadership capacity given what has transpired under his administration. Bisram is not stupid. He, like everyone else who reads the papers is familiar with both Jagdeo and the PPP’s flaws, yet he chooses to ignore these issues, which are all widely publicised. As a canvasser for the PPP, he continues to perpetuate the lie of the ‘glory’ of Jagdeo. I reiterate that PPP supporters have to get wise to the PPP and start
another party. Sean Ori’s letter, ‘The PPP should take back the party from Bharrat Jagdeo,’ SN Dec 21/17, demonstrates the kind of thinking which is essential to driving political, and economic change, in Guyana. Ori may not be anyone of distinguished standing in our society, but he amplifies what many Guyanese are thinking. PPP supporters should by now have deduced that the organisation and management of the PPP have been hijacked by the current cabal in charge, and it virtually impossible to dislodge them. The primary reason for this is that the members of the PPP no more represent the interests of their supporters. Yours faithfully, Craig Sylvester
Guyana Goldfields is... From page 5 are trying to give their families a better life through self sacrifice, but Guyana Goldfields does not care. As long as the big guns are satisfied, to hell with the people who are really doing the work. They pretend and put on a front when visitors from the government and the media are there. But the harsh reality is written in the hearts and on the countenances of disappointed employees. Concerned Citizen Roshena Moore
A mini health check is the first step to donating blood
Friday December 29, 2017
Supplies being rushed to 200 Exxon contract silent on finances flood-hit Canal No. 1 families in place for possible oil spill Officials from the Civil Defence Commission (CDC), National Drainage and Irrigation Authority (NDIA) and Region Three, visited Canal No. 1 yesterday and begun delivering assistance to some 200 families, whose homes and farmlands were extremely affected by the recent heavy rainfall. Director General Acting, Civil Defence Commission (CDC), Major Kester Craig, who visited the homes of several residents, said that CDC is currently mobilising sanitation supplies to be distributed to the most affected persons. Speaking to the Department of Public Information (DPI), Major Craig, explained that “We will continue to be in contact with the people of Canal. We will first work in the most affected area, which is more down to the back in the canal to ensure that there are sanitation items such as bleach, jeyes fluid, soap, soap powder etc. So, basically, we will be monitoring it all the time and continue to give our support to this area.” Major Craig noted that the Minister of Health has been alerted about the situation and has promised to mobilise a team to visit the area and ascertain what assistance can be given to the people. He noted that “Critical is information on how they can use safe water and what action they can take to reduce waterborne diseases.” At the moment, NDIA, the Canals Polder Neighbourhood Democratic Council (NDC) and the Water Users Association are working in collaboration with GAICO construction to clear and desilt drains and canals to ensure the water recedes in the shortest possible time. NDIA’s Engineer, Lall Piterahdaue, explained that there is a 21-man labour force within the channel, conduct-
CDC staff packing relief items for residents of Canal No. 1 ing “manual pulling” of the mass that has built up in the canal. Also, two tractors were employed to deal with the mechanical pulling of the mass in that area that is difficult to reach. Piterahdaue noted that with the intense rain, the release of water is required at the critical area, to ensure there is no further threat. NDC Chairman Dhanraj Bipath said that due to the interventions, the water is receding, albeit slowly. “We have seen little improvement, but because of the overnight rain, when you get up the next morning the entire place is flooded…We have to clear upfront before the back get a release because the entire area has to be released village by village and it will be on a first come first serve
bases, those at the first will release faster and the back will take a bit more time,” he explained. On each side of the main canal, there is one mile stretch of farmland that has to drain into the channel. Since it is an agricultural area, fertilizer gets in and the mass grows quickly. Bipath said that at the NDC level, support was provided to ensure that the mass built up at the pump is cleared. However, he said that there is a problem getting the water to the pump through the main drainage canal, because while the water is low at the front, there is a huge build up at the back. Currently, all three sluices are fully functioning, along with two additional pumps that are discharging into the Demerara River.
When it comes to oil and gas companies, it would not be unreasonable for countries to properly prepare for the possibility of an oil spill. In fact, these companies are expected to prepare for such environmental disasters as part of their risk assessment. But with ExxonMobil set to kick start in March 2020, Guyana is yet to see what provisions are in place by the company or the government in relation to oil spill prevention and the readiness to respond. In fact, Kaieteur News challenged Country Manager for ExxonMobil, Rod Henson during a press conference yesterday at the Marriott Hotel to say if there were contractual provisions in place for such an eventuality. Henson advised that there is “language” in the contract it has with the Government which speaks to this. But a careful examination of Article 28 of the Contract which focuses on Social Responsibility and Protection of the Environment, only sparks more questions. In fact, the only detailed financial arrangement in place in the aforementioned heading is for social and environmental projects to be discussed and agreed upon by the two parties. That arrangement says, “The Minister and the Contractor shall establish a program of financial support for
…but company claims to have its own systems in place environmental and social projects to be funded by the Contractor. The Contractor shall directly fund the amount of three hundred thousand United States Dollars (US$300,000.00) per Calendar Year with any unspent portion carried over into the ensuing Calendar Years of the Agreement.” Furthermore, Henson noted yesterday that the ExxonMobil has in place, its own Oil Spill Response Plan. He said that the Government of Guyana is in possession of this document. OIL SPILL RESPONSE PLANS Every country is expected to have in its possession, an
oil spill response plan that the operator/company would implement in the event of such a disaster. ExxonMobil will be hitting the start button on production in less than three years and Guyana is yet to see such a document from the company or the Government. It is important, however, that citizens are given ample opportunity to examine any oil spill response plan which would be submitted by this company. In that document, ExxonMobil is expected to state the possible worst case scenarios that could occur during an oil spill in Guyana’s waters and how it would respond to it.
Friday December 29, 2017
Guyana’s agreement “fair” for a new kid on the oil block - ExxonMobil Guyana secured a “fair” contract with oil giant, ExxonMobil. At least that is the point of view expressed by the company’s Country Manager, Rod Henson, who based his pronouncement on the fact that Guyana is new to oil production. Yesterday, at a Press Conference at the Marriott Hotel, ExxonMobil said that the petroleum agreement that it signed with Guyana is globally competitive for countries at similar stage of exploration. The Coalition Government entered into an agreement with ExxonMobil on October 7, 2016. That agreement was an improvement on the contract signed in 2012 by the Donald Ramotar Administration. Under the new contract, there is an increase in annual rental fee from US$240,000 to US$1M as well as an increase of annual training fee from US$45,000 to US$300,000 per year. There is also a social responsibility/environmental support with an annual fee of US$300,000 per year. ExxonMobil also agreed to a 2 percent royalty up from the initial one percent. The royalty provides Guyana with increased early revenue and overall government take. ExxonMobil will mostly report directly to the Minister of Natural Resources as opposed to the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission or the Petroleum Commission. Article 11 of the contract which speaks about cost recovery and production shar-
ing - outlines ExxonMobil’s cost recovery is limited to a cap of 75 percent total monthly production. The remaining volume is to be split 50/50 between the government and ExxonMobil. Article 12 provides for gas to power mechanisms. It says that if gas is in excess of operational needs then ExxonMobil gets five years to conduct a utilisation feasibility study. That gas requires additional infrastructure and market development. Henson said that gas-topower is being assessed for gas sales under the petroleum agreement. The 50/50 that is to be divided between ExxonMobil and the Government of Guyana is not money but actual crude. Further, Article 14 outlines how government will dispose of its share of oil. It states that Government may request that ExxonMobil markets the government’s share of oil. The government may change from that method, but will need to give a six month notice if indeed it needs to approach ExxonMobil to market its share. Henson said that this method is often selected by countries new to crude marketing for a period of learning. He said, too, “A process would be agreed to negotiate marketing fees that are competitive, fair and transparent to the government.” Moreover, Article 15 deals specifically with taxation and royalty, which states that ExxonMobil shall not be exposed to any VAT, excise tax
ExxonMobil Country Manager, Rod Henson or duty. The company shall, however, pay income tax. Speaking of this article yesterday, Henson said, “Certain tax exemptions are provided, like corporation tax.” Henson said that this is a very common feature in the oil industry where governments seek to obtain primary value from oil/gas sharing instead of full tax obligations. Article 17 goes on to deal with domestic market obligation. Domestic market obligations are the responsibility to supply oil or gas to the local market if government entitlement volumes are insufficient. Henson said that ExxonMobil is open to exploring the viability of sales with any interested domestic buyers without the need for an obligation. He said that such sales, in any case, will benefit the people of Guyana as the same are subject to the payment of royalty and applicable taxes. Articles18 and 19 deal directly with Guyana’s re-
sources and employment training respectively. These two articles provide local content obligations to give preference to competitive Guyanese goods and services available on a timely basis in the quantity and of the quality required. They speak as well to the employment of Guyanese sub-contractors in so far as they are commercially competitive and satisfy the contractor’s financial and technical requirements. There are also requirements for ongoing local content review, reporting and submission of a detailed plan with the Ministry. Annually, US$300,000 is to be paid to the government to provide for Guyanese personnel training on the job at domestic or overseas institutions, university or college
courses. Article 22 of the contract focuses on foreign exchange control. This is about the banking of profits by ExxonMobil, locally and overseas, and allows ExxonMobil to bank in whatever currency it wishes to. Article 23 of the contract covers accounting and audits. This is quite straightforward. That article stipulates that ExxonMobil must maintain audit records and the Government of Guyana must always be given access to these upon request. There is also a Force Majeure Clause at Article 24. Article 28 deals with the Social Responsibility and Protection of the Environment. The operator is committed to operating safely and protecting the environment. Henson said that very clear obligations are contained within the
contract, and applicable laws and regulations concerning prevention, and if necessary, remediation of potential environmental impacts from Stabroek operations. It is Article 33 that provides for the signature bonus. The contract stipulated exactly how the bonus should be handled, in that it must be placed in a bank account that is to be set up based on the instruction of the Minister of Finance. Henson said that, based on the contract, Guyana’s profit oil and royalty at US$50 per barrel oil price from Liza Phase 1 alone could be over US$1.5B after five years production and over US $7B over the project’s life. He said that the contract stipulated the US$18M signature bonus to be paid to a government-designated account.
Paid 80% of monies…
CJIA completion now set for next year-end Ongoing works at CJIA
With more than 80 percent of the monies paid out, Government is targeting a December 2018 completion date for the entire project. With car rentals, new duty free shops, elevators, escalators and aircraft bridges, officials yesterday disclosed that they were forced to redesign the project over the last two years just to make the US$150M do. The project was signed in November 2011 and was set to be completed in September 2015. According to Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA), Ramesh Ghir, the entire project, inclusive of rehabilitation and renovation of existing structures, will be completed at the end of the new year. The CEO was yesterday presenting an update on the project, at the Ministry of Public Infrastructure’s year-end Press Conference.
The project encompasses and caters for a new arrival terminal building, upgrades to the existing terminal building, a remote apron, extensions to the north-eastern and southwestern runways, a diesel generator room and a fire pump station. “The north-eastern extension of the runway is going to be completed by July 2018, the south-western extension, the first 500 metres of the pavement will be done by April 2018 and then the last 190 metres is going to go until December 2018,” Ghir stated. “The taxi-ways and apron will all be completed by March, the new arrival terminal by June of 2018, of course, the boarding bridge will be finished before that and the existing terminal building is going to go until December 2018.” Meanwhile, these facilities
will house baggage carousels and additional duty-free shops in the terminals along with escalators. Upon completion, the CJIA is expected to be a modern state-of-the-art port facility, encouraging the smooth flow of services to those arriving in or departing Guyana by air. Addressing the matter of financing for the project, Ghir said, “to date, US$111M was paid out, US$6.4M is Government of Guyana Payment, $105M is from EXIM bank and that really accounts for 81 percent of the project.” The China Harbour Engineering Company Limited is the contracted agency executing the project. According to Ghir, persons who traversed through the airport have responded positively to the expansion, despite some of the “hiccups” and “inconveniences” that may be encountered from time to time.
Friday December 29, 2017
Square pegs for square holes The political parties and coalitions that have traditionally run Guyana have looked for the right persons in the wrong places. They have come into office and have tried to find competent persons from amongst their loyalists. The two do not always go together. The PNC ruled Guyana for twenty-eight years. During that period, it pursued a deliberate strategy of dominating the administrative space in the country. It wanted its own supporters and its own loyalists in the right jobs in the public sector. When it took power in 1964, there were already persons sympathetic to the government in senior positions within the public sector. The PNC destroyed the credibility of many of those persons by making them political lackeys. Some of these persons went as far as defending the shameless rigging of the 1968 and 1973 elections. They were so blinded by their loyalty to the PNC that they could not see how the dishonest positions they took undermined whatever semblance of respect and professionalism they had left. The PNC superseded many professionals with incompetent political hacks whose only qualifications were their political loyalty to the ruling party. Professionals within the public service who were bypassed for promotion or surpassed by political appointees migrated and kept their peace. Even now, they speak about their humiliations in private. They left Guyana because they could not stomach it anymore. None of the Guyanese journalists in the diaspora have found the time to assemble a collection of the stories of these men and women who were the victims of the politicization of Guyanaâ€™s public sector. The PPP also did the same. And many professionals left also during their time in power. The stories of this set of professionals also need
to be told. Change is inevitable whenever a new government takes office. But you do not throw out the baby with the bathwater. People can always be replaced, but the damage done to morale and professionalism cannot be undone. The history of the public service in Guyana has demonstrated this since Independence. APNU+AFC has dismissed or terminated the contracts of many persons since they came to office in May 2015. There have been cases of personal and political vindictiveness. The government has replaced those persons in most instances with loyalists. The problem is that many of those who have been given jobs are pushy people with assertive personalities, but who do not always have the talent for the specific job they have to undertake. You have people working in positions earning fortunes, but who are not experienced enough to be occupying those positions. These political appointees have bypassed other persons who worked within the system and who were waiting for promotion. Instead, they are seeing a repeat of what the PPP did: put its own political appointees in office. If this trend is not brought to an end, the exodus of skilled Guyanese will continue. Professionals now have more options. They can find work in the Caribbean. The free movement of university graduates has seen many Guyanese professionals take up job offers in the Caribbean, thereby further reducing the skilled persons available to the government. Professionals are not going to stick around to be humiliated and to take orders from persons of lesser ability. The government should not employ persons with limited experience to assume authority over skilled professionals who are qualified and experienced. It should not take persons who were its loyal
supporters and simply place them in organisations without them never having any experience in the field in which they have to work. This is going to set this country back and demoralise the public service. You cannot simply take persons and place them into certain jobs on the basis only of their trustworthiness. They must have the necessary expertise and experience. Donald Trump once advised that employers should examine what someone brings to the job. What were their achievements in the field in
which they worked? And are they going to be able to replicate that success in their new job? If someone has just a little experience and no great achievement in a particular field, then that person should not be given preference over a tried and tested professional. Political loyalty and cronyism should not take priority over competence. Due diligence, even on loyalists, must be done. There are persons lining up for jobs with the new government. Some of them were living overseas. It would be interesting
to know just how long they worked and what they achieved during that period. It would be interesting to know of their experience in the type of job they are being put to do. It would be interesting to know of their familiarity or adaptability to local systems. There should be a competitive process for filling vacancies. You cannot simply go around and appoint persons to positions. There is no guarantee that you will get the best person for the job this way. There are a lot of fortune hunters out there looking to capitalise on the insecurity of
the new government. Some of them are pushy and self-confident, but behind that veneer there is nothing but hot air. There is no talent and no expertise. The government has to beware of these types. Contaminating government with such individuals will lead the coalition down the same road to disaster as the PNC and the PPP governments of the past.
Friday December 29, 2017
Friday December 29, 2017
Extensive work plugged into nursing programme reform Nurses are and will continue to be an important asset to any health care system. It was for this reason that the Public Health Ministry could not have taken lightly some glaring shortcomings in its Professional Nurses programme. Among those who stood resolutely in the gap to transform the nursing programme was Ms. Mandy La Fleur. Serving in the capacity as a consultant, La Fleur, with the support of other experts within the health field, engaged tactical measures that saw drastic improvement in the candidates’ performances at the most recent sitting of the Professional Nurses programme. This would mark the second such tactical intervention which allowed the country to record outstanding academic outcomes. The other was the intervening measures that were introduced by the Ministry of Education to address the failing Mathematics performance at the National Grade Six Assessment [NGSA]. That intervention came as a directive from President David Granger and was aimed at putting measures in place to help both teachers and pupils incorporate measures designed to improve how Mathematics is taught, and in turn, internalised by the pupils. The outcome was an improved pass rate in Mathematics moving from 14 percent in 2016 to a respectable 46 percent in 2017. Stressing the importance of such strategic intervening measures, La Fleur considered that “sometimes we see results and we fail to acknowledge that there was a process or a means to the end.” She recalled that the nursing programme intervention was a process that swung into motion when Minister of Public Health, Ms Volda Lawrence, aided by a team from her Ministry, directed interest into what was happening with the country’s nurses,
- Consultant especially in the area of examination. Reflecting on this tactical move, La Fleur said, “At first their input appeared to many of us as though it was too much of a direct mandate from the Ministry, but in the end we have seen its benefits.” Heeding the concerns from the Ministry, La Fleur recalled that moves were made towards a diagnostic examination. “That pointed to some of the contributing factors to our dilemma, and this indeed served as a guide to help us to stay our path,” recounted La Fleur, as she revealed that several consultation meetings were held at the Georgetown Nursing Council, at the schools of nursing as well as with key health and educational personnel. “We worked hard...to get all of our partners on the same page. So we provided information, updated those who received part information, clarified our goals, achieved consensus and refined our approach. This was not an easy task; it was not an easy process, but we were able to move forward as a team, and as a team we worked,” said La Fleur. In fact she pointed out that this approach was a lesson learnt that led to decisions being made, including two weeks of intense remedial sessions. “It was there that it was mandated that all students attend these sessions...we had trouble [in the past] thus the need for the mandate,” said La Fleur, as she pointed out that “we were conscious that the schools of nursing were already involved in their remedial plans.” This might have been in light of the fact that some of the schools of nursing had previously seen daunting performances, and there were even reports that some factions had engaged in decep-
Ms. Mandy LaFleur tive activities. According to LaFleur, based on the diagnostic results, the robust remedial sessions brought in additional tutors for both theoretical and practical sessions. The schools of nursing include Georgetown, New Amsterdam, Linden and the Saint Joseph Mercy Hospital. For the Georgetown candidates, since it was a very large group of students, La Fleur said that two-thirds were supported in their daily process where daily private tutorship was done in the afternoons. Tutorship was offered by La Fleur, together with Nurse Joan Stewart. During these private sessions, she disclosed that “specific focus was given to item analysis, presentation skills, nursing care plans, among others.” Added to this, she said that exploration of actual cases in practice settings was done in classrooms so as to link the cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains to enhance students’ comprehension analysis and critical thinking. “I know some students complained, but then they later voiced their satisfaction...this is what we needed Sister [they said],” said La Fleur. The outcome of the extensive effort was a 97 percent overall pass rate when the results of the professional nurses’ programme were released recently.
Friday December 29, 2017
ExxonMobil says it does not take advantage of countries Country Manager for ExxonMobil, Rod Henson professed to the media yesterday during a briefing that the multibillion-dollar entity does not take advantage of countries. Henson emphasised, “Our reputation is very important to us.” His comments in this regard came on the heels of media inquiries on a damning report from the International Monetary Fund (IMF). That report notes that the Production Sharing Agreement with ExxonMobil has several loopholes which could be abused by the oil giant. One of the issues that the IMF report points out is in relation to ring-fencing. This provision ensures that ExxonMobil cannot transfer the expenses incurred at one well to another. The IMF said that in principle, the ring-fencing arrangement ensures that the government’s revenue from the Stabroek Block is calculated based on each field or well separately. The Fund stated, “However, this is undone by the Production Sharing Agreement framework allowing the contractor to allocate cost oil to any field within the contract area.” Henson claimed he did not read the report, but saw media articles which suggested that the agreement is rather generous to ExxonMobil. He said that while there are headlines stating that the deal was generous to one party, it was noted in those very media reports that this was due to the “frontier nature of Guyana.” The Country Manager said, “That is what we have said and this has even been in the McKenzie study. We don’t take advantage of countries or partners. We have been in business for over 130 years. Our reputation is very important to us. Guyana has been a positive experience…” TRACK RECORD While ExxonMobil may claim that it is not in the practice of taking advantage of countries, its track record in some cases appears to tell a completely different story. In 2003, ExxonMobil was found to be defrauding the state of Alabama out of royalty payments and was ordered by the courts to pay up more than US$100 million in back-pay royalties. According to www.classaction.org., in August 2012, a Kansas judge approved a US$54 million settlement with landowners who claimed they were underpaid royalties when ExxonMobil made deductions
Troubled Canawaima ferry to be out of commission for a week
…but track record suggests otherwise
Country Manager for ExxonMobil, Rod Henson for expenses that occurred downstream of their wells. The settlement also ended a lawsuit filed in Kansas state court against ExxonMobil over royalties dating back to 2000. AMERICAN INDIAN/ FEDERAL LANDS The affiliates of Mobil who merged with ExxonMobil were also caught in allegations of underpayment o royalties from American and Federal Lands. According to the United States Department of Justice, (https://www.justice.gov/ opa/pr/mobil-oil-companiespay-us-322-million-resolve-allegations-underpayment-royalties-american) Mobil Natural Gas Inc., Mobil Exploration & Producing U.S. Inc. and their affiliates had agreed to pay the United States US$32.2 million to resolve claims that they violated the False Claims Act by knowingly underpaying royalties owed on natural gas produced from federal and American Indian leases. This was released by the Justice Department on April 5, 2010. The Justice Department said that the Mobil companies were alleged to have systematically under reported the value of natural gas taken from the leases from March 1, 1988 to Nov. 30, 1999, and, consequently, paid fewer royalties than owed to the United States and various American Indian tribes. The release from the Department said that the settlement with the Mobil companies came from a lawsuit filed by Harold Wright on behalf of the United States. “The qui tam or whistleblower provisions of the False Claims Act allow private citizens to file actions on behalf of the United States and to share in any recovery.
Because Mr. Wright is deceased, his heirs will receive a US$975,000 share of the settlement,” the release had said. The Justice Department went on to state that it partially intervened against the Mobil defendants in the Wright lawsuit, and previously settled with Burlington Resources Inc. for $105.3 million, Shell Oil Co. for $56 million, Chevron Corporation, Texaco and Unocal Incorporated for $45.5 million and Dominion Exploration and Production Co. for $2 million. The Department said that the Mobil companies were merged into and became subsidiaries of ExxonMobil, the world’s largest publically traded international Oil and Gas Company in November 1999. The Minerals Management Service (MMS) of the U.S. Department of the Interior is responsible for overseeing the collection of royalties on federal and American Indian leases, as well as federal offshore lands on the Outer Continental Shelf. The Justice Department said that each month, companies are required to report to MMS the value of the natural gas produced from their federal and American Indian leases and to pay a percentage of the reported value as royalties. “The United States alleged that the Mobil companies used transactions with affiliated entities to falsely reduce the reported value of gas taken from federal and American Indian leases, to claim excessive deductions for the cost of transporting that gas, and to otherwise understate the value they reported each month for their natural gas production.” The investigation of and settlement with the Mobil Defendants was jointly handled by the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Texas and the Civil Division of the Department of Justice, with the assistance of the Department of the Interior’s Office of Inspector General, Minerals Management Service, and Office of the Solicitor. (The case is U.S. ex rel. Wright v. Chevron USA, Inc. et al., 5:03-CV-264 (E.D. Tex.). (See link for more details and other related articles on ExxonMobil’s past https:// www.kaieteurnewsonline.com/ category/what-guyananeeds-to-know-aboutexxonmobil/.)
The MV Canawaima at the Moleson Creek terminal After a rocky year of technical issues, authorities have confirmed that the Moleson Creek ferry service will be out of commission for a week early in the new year to facilitate repairs. Yesterday, Terminal Manager of the Canawaima Ferry Service Inc., Deyne Harry, disclosed that the MV Canawaima which is being operated jointly by Guyana and
Suriname will be out of service between January 6-14, 2018, for an emergency docking. Works are to be done during the week to restore the two engines. In April too, another docking is scheduled. The ferry was forced to use a tug, causing delays and discomfort for passengers and drivers in the past months. The service has been
struggling with the management forced to cancel some days and reduce its number of crossings from two daily to one. The year altogether has not been good for the service. According to Harry, who was speaking during the endof-year press conference of the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, passenger traffic to (Continued on page 31)
Friday December 29, 2017
Some promoted teachers DPP sends City Hall sex report yet to receive retroactive pay back to police for further queries Another year is about to end but a number of public school teachers are yet to receive retroactive payment for senior promotions that they were eligible for since 2015. Although the promotions were stalled because of an ongoing court matter, a ruling into that very matter saw the promotions being fasttracked earlier this year. Along with the promotions should have been a hike in pay for the teachers. But according to President of the Guyana Teachers’ Union [GTU], Mr. Mark Lyte, despite concerns raised about the sloth in the payment to teachers, only about six regions have thus far fully complied. Previously, the union had shared concerns that only a mere four regions had paid their teachers as at October. Although an additional two regions have made their payments, Lyte said that the union is paying close attention to the way the regions are handling this situation. “Some regions have paid some of their promoted teachers [but] we will not see it as those regions honouring their obligation to those teachers until all teachers in each region have been paid,” said Lyte. He revealed recently that some of the regions have indicated that they have been unable to pay teachers their increase since they are awaiting instruction from the Ministry of Communities which had overseer rights for regional spending. But according to Lyte, there has been a commitment from the defaulting regions that payment will be made no later than February 2018. As such, Lyte said that the Union is holding the outstanding regions to their word that payments to all promoted teachers will be fully honoured by that period. The senior promotions entitle teachers to payment retroactive to September 1, 2015, when their appointments should have become active. The teachers saw their appointments being delayed because of a court action initiated by the GTU which was intended to prevent both the TSC and School Boards governing public schools from proceeding with questionable
GTU President, Mark Lyte promotion processes. A court ruling was handed down last year by Chief Justice, Yonette Cummings Edwards, instructing the TSC to review its preliminary list of promotions. The promotions only became effective at the start of this school year. Like the TSC, the Schools Board Secretariat was mandated by a court ruling, to review its preliminary list of promotions. Based on the information, this publication was privy to, a total of 22 changes were made to the preliminary list of promotions that was completed in 2015. It was revealed that the Schools Board list contained a total of 35 appointments. These included promotions for head teachers, deputy head teachers, senior masters/mistresses, heads of department, administrators, senior lecturers and Vice Principals. The reviewed list revealed 26 appointments reducing the number of appointees by nine. These changes were necessary, Lyte said, due to the fact that some appointees did not satisfy the criteria as set out in the advertisement. In fact, he noted that applicants were awarded points for qualifications that attach no points. “Generally, GTU is extremely satisfied with the review process, since it indicates that the School Boards were doing their own thing much to the detriment of the system,” Lyte had informed following the review. He added then too, “We are ready to move forward and it is hoped that with the move to have TSC do all senior pro-
motions, employment and discipline in the next phase and onwards that the system will allow for fairer treatment of all applicants.” But the TSC has since been dissolved. According to Lyte, the Union is concerned that moves are yet to be made to install a new Commission. The GTU’s concern is linked to the fact that teachers could once again be subjected to a prolonged denial of promotions due to this state of affairs. According to Lyte, “the union, along with officials of the Ministry of Education, has already vetted a list of senior appointments and that list has been finalised. It is the Commission’s responsibility to now publish that list. All we are waiting on now is for the Commission to be sworn in, in order for the process to move forward. At this point it is critical for the Commission to be sworn in, but we are not hearing anything about this. The longer we take to have a Commission in place, the longer the list will take to be published, and the longer our teachers will have to wait to be promoted again.” As a constitutional body, the Commission usually comprises four members nominated by the ruling party, one member nominated by the opposition party and another nominated by the GTU. The union, according to Lyte, has already nominated its member. “We will be retaining our last nominee, but it is left for the party in power and opposition [party] to name the other five, and then the Commission has to be sworn in by the President [David Granger]. Even as the union eagerly awaits the appointment of a new Commission, Lyte said that the Union will continue to represent its membership with zeal and vigour to ensure that they are in receipt of what they deserve, including a working environment that is conducive, and a living wage. Currently the union is part of a Task Force engaged in what is said to be fruitful discussions aimed at crafting a suitable remuneration package for public school teachers. “We are urging our teachers to be patient, because all that we do is in their interest, and we only want the best for our teachers,” Lyte assured.
Town Clerk, Royston King; and Mayor, Patricia Chase-Green
The Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) has requested that the police conduct further investigations into the City Hall scandal, in which a City Constable was allegedly caught having sex with a juvenile three months ago. Kaieteur News understands that the office of the DPP returned the file to the police yesterday, requesting that investigators “clear up” specific points in the matter. Once this is done, it will then be returned to the DPP. It was on August 15, last, that a lance corporal attached to the City Constabulary was allegedly caught having sex with a 15-year-old boy who was detained for loitering. The accused was eventually taken into police custody on October 17. He was then released on bail. City Hall then dismissed the alleged culprit and a corporal who had witnessed and reported the matter. They were subsequently reinstated and sent on paid leave, pending the outcome of the probe. City Mayor Patricia ChaseGreen and Chief Constable Andrew Foo have blamed each other for failing to act immediately on the report. Chase-Green alleged that Foo only acted on the allegation after she brought the matter to the Full Council, and gave him 24 hours to give a report or be sent home. Chase-Green has also scolded Town Clerk, Royston King, for misleading the Council for taking the unilateral decision to fire the accused Lance Corporal and the witness. But while Mayor ChaseGreen said she only learnt of
the allegation after reading the Kaieteur News, Foo insisted that he had informed the mayor and the Town Clerk the following day on learning about the issue. In the statement, he gave to a City Constable, the juvenile, of no fixed place of abode, said he was arrested on August 22, for loitering and placed on the prisoner’s bench at the Regent Street Enquiries Outpost at City Hall. He alleged that at around 23:00 hrs, a male constable took over, and about 02:30 hrs, the constable woke him and told him to lie on his back, which he did. Shortly after, the male rank told him to stand by the washroom. Another rank then came in and requested a firearm, which the first rank handed over. The two men sat watching a movie for awhile. Eventually, the officer with the firearm left, while the other returned and unbuttoned the juvenile’s pants, placed a condom on the juvenile’s privates and let the teen have sex with him. According to the teen’s statement, the officer who had collected the firearm returned shortly after. The rank allegedly pointed at the teen and said that he would “speak to me seriously in the morning.’ It was this same rank that stated that he saw the incident. He alleged that he was sitting at his desk when he heard someone moaning. He peeped through a vent and saw his colleague, a Lance Corporal, having sex with the prisoner. After, the lance corporal went to the washroom with a condom he had removed from the teen’s privates.
The rank then reported the matter. According to the report seen by Kaieteur News, the accused confirmed that a juvenile was in custody while he was on duty. He said that at around 06:50 hrs the following day, he handed over duty to a woman constable and it was at around 11:30 hrs that he received a telephone call in which he was told of the allegation, and that he must report to the investigative section immediately. A report on the matter concluded that “the testimony of the rank should be relied upon; due to the fact that the victim substantiated that he and Lance Corporal (name given) were involved in buggery.” “A confrontation was not done, since the VC did not return to the Investigation Section and numerous efforts were made to locate him but to no avail,” the report stated. “This is not the first time that Lance Corporal (name given) was accused of being involved in sexual activities with a juvenile in the Regent Street outpost. In fact, in 2016, he was accused of having sexual intercourse with a juvenile prisoner. At the time, the said Lance Corporal was in charge of the Regent Street outpost. The matter was dropped because the victim decided not to pursue the matter.” The report also stated that checks in the City Constabulary station diary revealed that the rank who witnessed the act had not made an entry in the station diary. This was considered to be a breach of protocol.
Friday December 29, 2017
Friday December 29, 2017
Over 3,300 child abuse NCN’s chief resigns suddenly cases recorded in 2017 The Child Care and Protection Agency recorded some 3,324 cases of child abuse cases by the end of October this year. The figure represents an increase of such, in comparison to figures recorded in the same period last year. The cases for last year amounted to 3,294. Last September, 400 cases of sexual abuse were under investigation by the Child Care and Protection Agency (CPA) and the Guyana Police Force, (GPF). Of 2,238 reports of child abuse, 424 were reported cases of sexual abuse to the CPA. The figures released by Suriname representative, Sylvie Fouet of United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) Guyana, pointed to the need for greater protection of children from violence and abuse Alluding to information compiled by the agency at a recent end-of-year event, Director of the CPA, Ann Greene noted that in 2017, the CPA‘s focus was to continue to build partnerships with key stakeholders and non-governmental organizations, the capacity of parents for their respective roles, the level of public awareness about the
CPA Director, Ann Greene importance of protecting the rights of children, and empowering teens and adolescents to prevent early sexual activities. Giving further details on their work for the year, the CPA Director noted that the Agency had met their target by providing alternative care for 167 children and prevented the separation of 2,851 children from their families, as a result of timely interventions. She noted that the success was as a result of the implementation of the agency’s multimedia child awareness campaign and pre-
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ventive programmes. Among the other successful projects lauded this year, Green detailed that the Special Parenting Programme has exceeded the target set for 2017 and great strides were also made in the Prevention of Teen Pregnancy empowerment programme. The Prevention of Teen Pregnancy Empowerment Programme was conducted in Regions One, Four, Five, Six, Seven and 10. Earlier this year, the Social Protection Ministry reported that there is still too much silence on childhood sexual abuse in society. It was noted too that “child sexual abuse is a hidden crime; done behind closed doors with victims literally without a voice to tell of abuse.” The Ministry stated that “incest and underage sexual activity resulting in pregnancy are (also) of grave concern.” In the meantime, the Ministry continues to partner with the GPF to ensure that ranks of the Force receive continuous training on aspects of the Sexual Offences Act (2010). In Guyana, the rate of violence against children and women has raised alarm in local and international spheres. The statistics, according to UNICEF, indicates that there is need for enforcement of legislation, since the lack thereof cast the police in an unfavourable position.
Months before his twoyear contract was due to end, Lennox Cornette, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the state-owned National Communications Network (NCN), has tendered his resignation. It appears that the Board of Directors of NCN was not too happy with his performance. Yesterday, Chairman of the Board, Enrico Woolford, confirmed that Cornette has resigned. “It is the same situation that is being reported. He has resigned from the position with effect from March 15, 2018. His leave will go for two months prior to that. Therefore effectively the last day on the job will be January 12. That is what he said to us in his resignation letter in terms of the timeline.” Woolford explained that the resignation is in keeping with the CEO’s contract which says he has the option of giving two months’ notice, if he wants to end the contract. “…or we have to give him two months’ notice if we want to end the contract. His contract would have expired at the end of April. Meaning for May 3rd.” Asked to respond to reports that the Board was not happy with Cornette’s performance, Woolford was diplomatic. “Well, put it this way. He thought it best to resign, that might have indicated what…and the board ac-
cepted the resignation. It may have indicated how the board felt about his performance. But that is a question for him.” Pressed then about whether the Board was happy under the CEO’s tenure, Woolford’s answer was a short … “No”. In May 2016, shortly after Cornette’s appointment, Director of Public Information, Imran Khan, had resigned from his position as a Director on the board, in a bid to distance himself. In a statement, Khan had made it clear that he had informed Prime Minister, Moses Nagamootoo that he could not associate himself with the appointment, which he described as “reckless” and “imprudent”. “Specifically, I advised the Prime Minister that in light of the Chairman of the Board reporting to the board, confirming admittance to an act committed by the individual (Cornette, who was) recommended for a senior administrative position, I am of the conviction that continuing as a Director is untenable.” Cornette’s appointment by the Board of Directors, as a replacement for former CEO Molly Hassan, took effect from May 1, 2016. The public quickly became aware that Cornette, a communications consultant, had a chequered past. Cornette had admitted to forging the signature of then GT&T Deputy General Manager, Terry Holder, while he
NCN’s Chief Executive Officer, Lennox Cornette was employed as the Public Relations Officer for the telephone company. Following Cornette’s appointment, emails exchanged between Khan and NCN Board Chairman Bishwa Panday had been published. In it, Panday could be seen defending his decision to appoint Cornette over the objections of Khan. He had stressed that the board went through a transparent process and a special meeting had been called. Khan, however, expressed strong reservations over Cornette’s appointment. In the emails, Khan had stated that he was “gravely afraid” of entrusting Cornette with the appointment and that if it reached the public domain, the board could find itself in a situation where it could not defend its decision. He had (Continued on page 27)
Closer monitoring and evaluation of CPCE programmes offered in far-flung areas The Cyril Potter College of Education (CPCE) has a number of Distance Education Centres through which it offers programmes to students that live in far-flung and hinterland communities. In 2018, the institution will be working to ensure that there is closer monitoring and evaluation of programmes offered in those areas. According to Principal of the CPCE, Ms. Viola Rowe, this is to ensure synergy of quality at the different centres. She said that the CPCE has an appraisal instrument that is used at the main campus in Turkeyen on the East Coast of Demerara. It is the intention to have the use of that instrument widened and applied at all centres across Guyana. “We currently have students evaluate the courses at the end of every semester. The students are allowed to evaluate how the course was done but now, in the vision of the closer monitoring and evaluation, it will target the staff and what they do. We want to have the staff mem-
CPCE Principal, Ms. Viola Rowe bers, not just the course, we want each staff to be evaluated.” Staff members will be evaluated by their peers at each centre and by the Head of the centres. The data and information recorded will aid the CPCE to ascertain what exactly is being done at each centre and how it is being done. With this information, the strengths and weaknesses of staff members and of the centres would be known.
As it relates to the performance of lecturers, Ms. Rowe explained that if weaknesses in lecturers are identified, assistance will be given to help that educator improve their standard of education delivery. This assistance will take the form of developmental sessions. These measures are being implemented with the intention of ensuring that all Guyanese interested in enrolling at CPCE, can be assured that they will have access to good quality of education delivery, regardless of which of the Distance Education Centres they attend. This will serve to eliminate the disparity that exists relating to the quality of education that is accessible on the coast when compared to the hinterland and rural communities. The CPCE has centres in Anna Regina, New Amsterdam, Rose Hall, Vreeden-Hoop, Linden, Mabaruma, Moruca, Port Kaituma, Charity, Moraikobai, Bartica, Kamarang, Mahdia, Lethem, Aishalton, Annai, Kwakwani, Georgetown and Turkeyen.
Friday December 29, 2017
Guyana preparing for new Petroleum exhibition In the coming year, Guyanese can look forward to yet another Exposition – the Guyana International Petroleum Business Summit & Exhibition (GIPEX). The introductory expo will be facilitated at the Marriott Hotel, Georgetown, from February 79, 2018. The expo aims to supply investors with the option of exploring the hydrocarbon potential of Guyana and will provide the platform for researchers, scientists and tutors to exhibit their research work. Participants from various industries will be onsite who can promote their products as well. Additionally, the summit will be used as an avenue for networking platforms for existing petroleum companies, service providers, equipment companies and investors. It is a collaborative effort between the UK-based Valiant Business Media and the Government of Guyana. Oil giant, Exxon Mobil has also jumped on board for the first ever GIPEX. Exxon Mobil’s Senior Director of Public and Government Affairs, Kimberly Brassington said that Exxon is ‘excited’ to be a partner in the GIPEX 2018 summit. “Bringing information
about the oil and gas industry and the Liza project to a larger audience is paramount in our mission here in Guyana. We hope the exhibition will provide knowledge and information-sharing opportunities, and aid in building relationships for the Guyanese community that will outlast the event. We welcome this initiative undertaken by the Ministry of Natural resources, Go-Invest and Valiant Business Media.” Expressing enthusiasm also was Executive Officer of the Guyana Office for Investment (GO-Invest), Owen Verwey. He said, “GO-Invest is pleased to welcome Exxon as the Strategic Partner in GIPEX 2018. This Convention is an important initiative, in collaboration with the Ministry of Natural Resources, Guyana and Valiant Business Media, United Kingdom, to promote the Oil and Gas sector globally, and attract investment and expertise in this important area of our economy.” Verwey further stated that the company looks forward to working with Exxon and the other organizations in making the launch of GIPEX a success. He also noted the importance of Guyanese coming on board to become acquainted
with the advances ongoing in the petroleum sector, and urged for international stakeholders to seek to explore Guyana as an investment destination. Meanwhile, Managing Director of Valiant Business Media, England, Shariq Abdul Hai shared his sentiments of working along with Exxon. “As the world’s leading publicly-owned energy company and the main player in Guyana, we look at Exxon's partnership with GIPEX as being of great importance. We look forward to working with Exxon to use GIPEX as a medium to share information with the people of Guyana about the Oil and Gas sector in general and the Liza project in particular,” he said. Abdul Hai said too that they are anticipating a number of Guyanese and international companies at the inaugural GIPEX, to establish business relationships and to further explore opportunities in this sector of the country. ExxonMobil along with its joint venture partners Hess and CNOOC Nexen is expected to commence oil production in the Liza field in 2020. In the meantime, they and other International Oil Companies (IOCs) are continuing to explore.
Chairpersons, deputies sworn in from 14 Region Three NDCs
At the swearing in ceremony for Region 3 chairpersons and their deputies of some 14 NDCs. Newly elected Chairpersons and deputies of the 14 respective Neighbourhood Democratic Councils (NDCs) within the Essequibo Islands/ West Demerara Region, took the Oath of Office yesterday. According to the Region Three administration, the oath was administered by the Regional Executive Officer, Denis Jaikaran in the presence
of all programme managers and overseers of the NDCs. The NDCs are responsible for running the various communities. “All chairpersons, in invited comments, spoke of the need for continuous co-operation with the Regional administration, so as to move this region to greater heights. Chairpersons also pledged
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their support to National Activities slated for 2018,” Jaikaran said. According to the REO, all overseers should become good managers of their respective offices and advisors to their chairpersons. He reminded the chairpersons and overseers that together they are a team and must work to advance the policies of Government in keeping with the Constitution of Guyana. Further, he reminded overseers that his doors are still open to all.
Friday December 29, 2017
Guyana’s laws provide for competitive bidding in petroleum sector - IMF The International Monetary Fund (IMF) recently noted that while Guyana grants licences for the oil sector on a first-come, firstserved basis, it may not be such a bad idea to keep in mind, that there are provisions for competitive bidding. The global body said that this is provided for in Guyana’s Petroleum Exploration and Exploration Act of 1986 and subsidiary regulations. The Mission said that this provision is yet to be used. It reminded, however, that the authorities here have found it beneficial to employ the competitive bidding procedure in the mining sector. A d d i t i o n a l l y, Government’s adviser on the Petroleum Sector, Dr Jan Mangal has advocated that given the discovery of the ExxonMobil Liza well, the process of competitive bidding should be used in the award of oil exploration leases as opposed to a “one-on-one negotiation” or “open door” method. With leases being awarded through a “one-on-one negotiation” Dr. Mangal in a letter to the press explained that the Ministry of Natural Resources negotiates directly with the interested party. He opined that there is a very se-
rious risk of corruption with this method due to the lack of transparency and accountability. He said that most countries have abandoned this method, as experts recommend against using it. Dr. Mangal said that Guyana should no longer be awarding petroleum acreage via one-onone negotiations since the Liza discovery in 2015. The Petroleum adviser said that after the Liza discovery, Guyana was in a position to use the method of “competitive bidding” for award of leases. He said that the Liza discovery de-risked Guyana, and as a consequence, all the major oil companies recognize that there is oil in the country. Dr. Mangal said, “All the oil companies will be interested in bidding for leases in a transparent way, which ensures that Guyana incorporates market forces to maximise its share. The petroleum adviser’s position has consistently maintained that competitive bidding is indeed the best approach for Guyana.” He continued, “In a direct correspondence from May2017 with one such oil company attempting to acquire acreage via one-on-one negotiation, it was indicated clearly
to them that: ‘Now that Guyana is on the radar post Liza, it is my personal view that all future acreage should be leased in a way which maximizes benefit to Guyana, hence in a market-orientated way, by an open bid round to ensure competition. And acre-
age should not be negotiated one-on-one between the Government and a prospective developer.” The adviser added, “The risk of government friends and family illegally obtaining leases will be significantly reduced if an independently managed and well audited competitive bidding process is used…” GGMC The website of the Guyana Geology and Mines Commission (GGMC) also acknowledges that competitive bidding can be done in the petroleum sector.
NCN’s chief resigns... (From page 16) described it as a huge risk. Khan had also called into question Cornette’s lack of broadcast experience. In his defence, Cornette had affirmed that the GT&T controversy had nothing to do with money or financial impropriety. Cornette had also stated that the matter was dealt with internally. He had pointed out that after 1999, when he left the company, he still maintained cordial relations with the company. For instance, he stated that in 2011 the company asked him to chair the annual Tele Gathering 16 event, which it was hosting. He also stated that in 2014, GT&T had assisted with printing his book, ‘The Development of Telecommunications in Guyana (1884-1994).’ Noting that numerous attacks had been made on him questioning his ability, he had pointed out that he had more than 20 years of experience in management and executive management positions to qualify him for the job.
Cornette was appointed after going through a round of interviews with the board. Panday had stated that he was the best candidate, citing that he holds a Masters Degree in Business Administration from the Australian Institute of Business, Diploma in Public Communication and
certificates in Planning and Promotion from Bailbrook College, England. The state-owned NCN had been struggling under the previous administration with reports of fraud, mismanagement and huge losses from poor decisions.
According to the website (http://www.ggmc.gov.gy/ main/?q=divisions/petroleum) Guyana is divided into two Petroleum Basins named Guyana and Takutu, respectively. The Guyana Basin is further divided into two basins, Onshore and Off-
shore. GGMC on its website notes that the deepest part of the southern “boundary” is some 150 miles from the Guyanese coastline. NABI Oil And Gas, Inc. and ON ENERGY Inc. are companies that have concessions within this part of the Basin. Within the Onshore Guyana Basin, there was a chance of these blocks being subjected to competitive bidding. GGMC stated, however, that this does not take away any one’s prerogative to apply for concessions within this area. The Commission
went on to state that there were 13 wells drilled within this part of the Basin from 1916 to present day. Only Rose Hall1 drilled in 1941 and Drill-1 in 1967 had oil shows. The eastern part of the Onshore Guyana Basin has the largest thickness of sediment reaching some 2,500 m. GGMC says it should also be noted that the gas found on the coast is nearly all biogenic, with a very small area yielding thermogenic gas. OFFSHORE GUYANABASIN According to GGMC, REPSOL, ANADARKO, ESSO/HESS/NEXEN, MidAtlantic Oil and Gas, Inc., RATIO Energy/Guyana Ltd and CGX Resources Inc. have petroleum concessions in this part of the basin. GGMC said that presently, a number of companies are negotiating for concessions in the offshore Guyana Area. On the aspect of Offshore Guyana Basin, from the nearshore to around 80 miles to the north, the seabed is generally on the continental shelf then it moves to the slope, and as one gets further, it reaches the deep-water area. The entity said that from the northwest (where the Anadarko concession is) to the Northeastern area depths
can be from 1,000 feet to more than 10,000 feet. This area is known as the “ultra-deep waters”. In May 2015, ESSO made a significant discovery of petroleum while drilling in its Stabroek Block. Prior to the ESSO discovery, GGMC said that the “best” well has been Karanambo-1 well drilled by Home Oil in the Takutu Basin in 1982. TAKUTU BASIN Located in the southwestern area of Guyana lies the Karanambo-1 well which was drilled in 1982 by Home Oil Company. GGMC says on its website that this was the best prospect drilled within this Basin. A small amount of light crude was accrued. Tests conducted on samples from Karanambo-1 found that the oil was of good quality (420API) and of a “sweet” variety, that is, it contained less than 0.5% hydrogen sulphide. However, its geological characteristics were mainly naturally fractured reservoirs, thus proving more difficult to find commercial petroleum than regular reservoirs. The other wells drilled in the Takutu are Lethem-1 (1980), Turantsink-1 (1992) and Apoteri K2 well (2011).
Friday December 29, 2017
At least 109 civilians killed by Saudi coalition’s raids, U.N. says GENEVA (Reuters) - A Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen has killed 109 civilians in air strikes in the past 10 days, including 54 people at a crowded market and 14 members of one family on a farm, the top U.N. official in the country said on Thursday. The fighting is futile and absurd, U.N. resident coordinator Jamie McGoldrick said, in unusually direct criticism of the campaign being waged by the coalition against the Iranaligned Houthi movement. The Saudi-led coalition, which is backed by the United States, Britain and others, denounced the charges, saying the information lacked credibility. McGoldrick appeared to be taking the Houthi side in the conflict, the Saudis said. Citing initial reports from the U.N. human rights office, a statement by McGoldrick said air strikes hit a crowded market in the Al Hayma subdistrict of Attazziah in Taiz governorate on Tuesday, killing 54 and injuring 32.
Eight of the dead and six of the injured were children, according to the reports. On the same day, an air strike on a farm in Attohayta district of Hodeidah governorate killed 14, and air strikes elsewhere killed a further 41 civilians and injured 43 over the past 10 days. “These incidents prove the complete disregard for human life that all parties, including the Saudi-led coalition, continue to show in this absurd war that has only resulted in the destruction of the country and the incommensurate suffering of its people, who are being punished as part of a futile military campaign by both sides,” McGoldrick said. Under international law, the warring sides must spare civilians and civilian infrastructure, he added. A spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition said he regretted the information that came in McGoldrick’s statement. “This statement creates a continuous state of doubt
about the information and data used by the United Nations, and challenges its credibility,” the coalition spokesman said in a statement carried by Saudi state news agency SPA. “As the coalition spokesman condemns this biased stand, he asserts the need for the United Nations to review the mechanism of humanitarian work and the competence of its employees working in Yemen and to monitor their performance,” SPA said, citing the statement. The United Nations has no up-to-date estimate of the death toll in Yemen. It said in August 2016 that according to medical centres at least 10,000 people had been killed. The United Nations says Yemen is the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, with about 8 million people on the brink of famine, a cholera epidemic that has infected 1 million people, and economic collapse in what was already one of the Arab world’s poorest countries.
Trump says China ‘Caught RED HANDED’ allowing oil into North Korea WA S H I N G T O N (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday said he was “very disappointed that China is allowing oil to go into North Korea” and that such moves would prevent “a friendly solution” to the crisis over Pyongyang’s nuclear programme. “Caught RED HANDED very disappointed that China is allowing oil to go into North Korea. There will never be a friendly solution to the North Korea problem if this continues to happen!” Trump wrote in a post on Twitter. China earlier on Thursday said there had been no U.N. sanction-breaking oil sales by Chinese ships to North Korea after a South Korean newspaper said Chinese and North Korean vessels had been illicitly linking up at sea to get oil to North Korea. The Trump administration has led a drive to step up global sanctions on North
Korea in response to Pyongyang’s efforts to develop nuclear-tipped missiles capable of hitting the United States. Washington says the full cooperation of China, North Korea’s neighbour and main trading partner, is vital to the success of this effort, while warning that all options are on the table, including military ones, in dealing with North Korea. The U.N. Security Council last week unanimously imposed new sanctions on North Korea for a recent intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) test, seeking to further limit its access to refined petroleum products and crude oil. The U.N. resolution seeks
to ban nearly 90 percent of refined petroleum exports to North Korea by capping them at 500,000 barrels a year. The U.S.-drafted resolution also caps crude oil supplies to North Korea at four million barrels a year and commits the Council to further reductions if North Korea were to conduct another nuclear test or launch another ICBM. Documents seen by Reuters this month showed Washington called on the Security Council to blacklist 10 ships for circumventing sanctions by conducting ship-to-ship transfers of refined petroleum products to North Korean vessels or transporting North Korean coal.
Fire in India’s financial capital kills at least 12 MUMBAI (Reuters) - At least 12 people died and 13 were injured in a late night fire at a multi-storey building in India’s financial capital of Mumbai, a hospital official said on Friday. Three people were critically injured, the official at Mumbai’s KEM Hospital said. The fire began in the early hours of Friday at a commercial building in Kamala Mills Compound in Central Mumbai, local media reported. The fire started in the top floor and soon engulfed the structure, according to reports. Kamala Mills is a refurbished old industrial compound that now houses a host of swanky restaurants and other commercial establishments.
Friday December 29, 2017
Sherriff Street/Mandela Ave. road project set to commence in January After many delays, officials from the Ministry of Public Infrastructure have formally handed over the Sherriff Street/Mandela Avenue project to the Chinese firm, SinoHydro Corporation Limited, to commence work next month. The US $31 million is being provided by the InterAmerican Development Bank (IDB) and will see an upgrade of Sherriff Street from the Rupert Craig Highway to the north and stretch south to the junction with Home Stretch Avenue in the area of National Cultural Centre. From the Cultural Centre along Mandela Avenue, the project will see the development of a new four-lane roadway to connect with Houston. The link is a critical one between the East Bank Demerara, Central Georgetown, the East Coast Demerara and Berbice. “Works should be starting in January,” said Geoffrey Vaughn, Coordinator, Works Services Group, Ministry of Public Infrastructure. “We
A section of Mandela Avenue which will be widened to accommodate the four-lane project. Geoffrey Vaughn have handed over the site and everything to the contractors and hopefully they will be full mobilisation.” The project has faced delays, including a decision by the Coalition Administration to re-formalise the loan. The project, announced under the previous government, came in for question after the administration earlier
this year disclosed that it had applied to the IDB to have part of the monies applied to facilitate the administration’s affordable housing programme. The IDB was asked to divert almost US$30M to fund new housing projects. More than US$60M was sitting idly for a number of years since IDB’s approval, in 2012, without the project mov-
ing off the ground. Despite a host of top business places along Sheriff Street, the road had deteriorated rapidly. The previous administration had favoured the widening of Sheriff Street, but the Coalition Administration was against the widening and instead focused on rehabilitating the road and widening the bridges.
Body to hear complaints against lawyers functioning again
The members of the LPC: From left (standing) - Emily Dodson, Robin Stoby, S.C., Dionne McCammon, Narendra Singh, Kim Kyte-Thomas, Ayana McCalman (representative of the Attorney General), Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards, Kamal Ramkarran, Andrew Pollard and Devindra Kissoon. From left: (sitting) are Tracy Gibson, Faye Barker-Meredith and Mandisa Breedy. After almost two years without one, Guyana has reconstituted the Legal Practitioners Committee (LPC). The committee is critical for persons who want to make complaints against lawyers who they believe would have breached regulations or acted in a manner that is unethical to the profession. According to a statement of the Bar Association of Guyana, the appointments were made by Chancellor (ag.), Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards, of 12 attorneys-at-law as members. The appointments came
after consultations with the Bar Association, it was disclosed. There have been a number of statements over the non-functioning of the LPC. The twelve appointed members of the committee are Robin Stoby, S.C.; Rafiq Khan, S.C.; Emily Dodson; Andrew Pollard; Teni Housty; Tracy Gibson; Moenudin Mc Doom; Narendra Singh; Devindra Kissoon; Dionne McCammon; Mandisa Breedy and Faye Barker-Meredith. The Attorney General, Basil Williams, and the Solicitor General, Kim Kyte-Thomas are
ex officio members of the committee. The members of the Committee will hold office for three years. According to the Bar Association, the committee will sit in two divisions of seven members each. Division 1 will be chaired by Stoby, S.C. while Division 2 will be headed by Pollard. The LPC is the body established under the Legal Practitioners Act, Chapter 4:01 which is charged with hearing and determining complaints against attorneys-atlaw. The committee has disciplinary powers.
In brief comments to the committee yesterday at the Court of Appeal, attended also by Kamal Ramkarran, President of the Bar Association and Pauline Chase, Secretary of the Bar Association, Justice Cummings-Edwards encouraged the lawyers to make recommendations for the strengthening of disciplinary powers. Persons who feel aggrieved against an attorneyat-law can lodge a complaint with the Secretary of the LPC, Jewel Campbell, at the Court of Appeal in Kingston, Georgetown.
Friday December 29, 2017
Employee steals boss’ vehicle, goes on ‘joyride’ FOR RENT
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Foreign man, confident, generous and loving seeks female Guyanese friend 1635 for friendship. Whatsapp#1-246-835-6908. TOURS Suriname Old year trip, fireworks day and night downtown jam Dec 30th ret Jan 2nd.Call: 665-5171, 6726506, 223-7589.
A man who was recently released from prison after serving a six-month sentence for stealing a vehicle, was yesterday back before a City Magistrate for stealing his employer’s vehicle, which he told the court he took on ‘joy ride’ in revenge. Twenty-four-year-old Mark Anthony appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan and pleaded guilty to the charge which alleged that on December 26 at Fourth Street, La Penitence, Georgetown, he stole motor pick-up GSS 9170 valued $3.5M, property of Rajiv Singh. Anthony pleaded guilty to the charge and was ordered to pay a fine of $30,000 or in default, serve two months’ imprisonment. He chose the latter option. Anthony in his explanation to the court stated, “Madam, I did not get all my money from my boss, so when I saw him and his family going on vacation, I decided to jump into the pick-up and go for a joyride.” Anthony added “I seh to myself if he can go on vacation without paying me, then I can go and drive and use out he gas.” Police Prosecutor Arvin Moore stated that Anthony and Singh are known to each other since Anthony has been employed as a handyman by Singh for a number of years. Facts presented by the prosecutor stated that on the day in question, Singh left his motor pick-up at home with
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- Chooses two months in jail instead of paying fine
Mark Anthony the key in the ignition and went to visit his family in Kitty. About 14:30 hrs, Singh, while proceeding north on Vlissengen Road, noticed his vehicle, with Anthony at the wheel, passing on the western carriageway. He then drove behind Anthony and after the pick-up stopped, he told Anthony to exit the vehicle and the man stated “Don’t tell me what to do; I have to go meet one of my boys”. Anthony then drove away in a fast manner.
The court heard that around 15:30 hrs, Singh went and reported the matter at Ruimveldt Police Station. The following day Anthony was arrested and the vehicle was found abandoned at Agricola Public Road. The left side of the vehicle was damaged. The allegation was put to Anthony and he admitted in a caution statement. When asked by the Magistrate what he had to say before she sentenced him, Anthony stated “ I done do what I had to do and I feel satisfy, because I use out his gas, and I feel like I get my money worth, so you have to do what you have to do.” After hearing that he had to pay a fine of $30,000 or spend two months in prison, Anthony replied “It’s okay, I will spend the two months.” The Magistrate told Anthony that she hoped that he will be rehabilitated while in prison, so that when he comes out, he would not go about stealing from people.
Mechanic charged for killing teen in Mandela Ave. accident A mechanic was yesterday charged and released on $500,000 bail for allegedly causing the death of a teen who was struck and killed after attempting to cross Mandela Avenue. Lennox De Nobrega, 36 of 7 Church Street, Cummingsburg, Georgetown, appeared before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts. It is alleged that on October 14 at Mandela Avenue, Georgetown, he drove motor car PRR 7624 in a manner dangerous to the public causing the death of 17-year-old Jhamallie Miles. The defendant was represented by Attorney-at-law Charles Ramson Jr. The lawyer asked that bail be granted to his client since he has no previous or pending matters. The lawyer added that on the day in question, his client was travelling east along the thoroughfare and Miles ran
A mini health check is the first step to donating blood
Charged: Lennox De Nobrega over the road after being chased out of a wash bay; he ran directly into the path of his client’s vehicle. Police Prosecutor Arvin Moore had no objection to bail being granted to the defendant but asked that conditions be attached. According to reports, Miles, who was attempting to cross the road, dashed in front of the De Nobrega’s vehicle when he was struck. He was then picked up and rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival. De Nobrega was instructed to make his next court appearance on January 15.
Friday December 29, 2017
Revival of co-op society movement among Social Protection Ministry highlights Minister within the Ministry of Social Protection, Keith Scott has lauded the renaissance of the co-operative movement as one of the highlights of the work carried out under the Ministry in 2017. According to a recent report released from the Ministry, Minister Scott praised the reawakening of the programme. The report indicated that during the year, the ministerial task force on the revitalization of the co-operative movement established last year, completed its work and submitted a number of vital recommendations, some of which have already been implemented. The recommendations in conjunction with the national viewpoint, Minister Scott said, have led to a fresh approach to the management of co-operative credit unions, friendly societies and co-operative societies. “Those institutions which were beleaguered by misman-
According to the report, at the moment, the task force has revitalized forty-two cooperative societies and thirty–two friendly societies. They are quite willing to comply with the enlightened measures which will enable them to be truly categorized as game changers, as defined by
Minister Keith Scott agement and corruption, now have to be transparent and accountable in accordance with certain minimum standards set by the range of antimoney laundering instruments which we have embraced.” The intent of the fresh approach is the elimination of corruption, nepotism and other forms of unprofessional behaviour which are factors that do not reflect human development.
Troubled Canawaima ferry to be out of... (From page 13) date has decreased by 11 percent in 2017 over that of 2016. Similarly, vehicular traffic to date has also decreased by four percent. Harry explained that the decision to operate trips across the Corentyne River, according to traffic demands, has proven to be more cost-effective. Prior to this arrangement, the service has been reporting losses. He said that the M.V Canawaima continues to experience extensive mechanical challenges that prompted the hire of a tug to assist in the propulsion of the vessel. This sometimes resulted in slight delays. Because of the ferry’s problems, revenues fell to $118M compared to $128M last year. Passengers crossing one way are more than 50,000, according to official figures. During the past year, the sign at Moleson Creek ferry service entrance was fixed, with expansion and renovations done to the terminal buildings and manager’s quarters. Additionally, more wall fans were installed in the passengers’ Arrival and Departure areas. In the coming year, the service is projecting a traffic increase by two percent with the installation of body and baggage scanners and the installation of perimeter lights along the access road. The floating ramp will also be replaced with the website of the service also established. The Canawaima ferry service was established since 1998 to connect travelers en route from Moleson creek - 10km south of Corriverton- to the south drain in Suriname. It is the only legal marine travel connection between the two countries. Significant trade is being conducted between the two countries, with an illegal crossing at Springlands, Corentyne, accounting for thousands traversing the river.
Professor Michael Scott. “It is worthy to note that in the coming year there shall be established four model cooperative societies in the Villages of Buxton, Ithaca, BV/ Triumph and Mocha/Arcadia which will receive international assistance valued in excess US $12M and in return,
will create a minimum 160 jobs.” “I don’t think that I have to reemphasize that the Cooperative movement is destined to be a beacon of hope for economic development of our nation. In fact, it has the potential of becoming the third pillar of our economic
infrastructure,” Minister Scott added. Additionally, in a move to strengthen the movement, the Guyana National Co-operative Union Limited has been resuscitated and that agency has thus far revised the Regional Unions in Regions 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 and 10.
Friday December 29, 2017
Suicide bombers kill dozens at Shi’ite centre in Afghan capital KABUL (Reuters) - Suicide bombers stormed a Shi‘ite cultural centre and news agency in the Afghan capital on Thursday, killing more than 40 people and wounding scores, many of them students attending a conference. Islamic State said in an online statement that it was responsible for the attack, saying the centre received support from Iran. It was the latest in a series that the movement has claimed on Shi‘ite targets in Kabul. Waheed Majrooh, a spokesman for the ministry of public health, said 41 people, including four women and two children, had been killed and 84 wounded, most suffering from burns. The attack occurred during a morning panel discussion on the anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Sunni-majority Afghanistan at the Tabian Social and Cultural Centre, witnesses said. The floor of the centre, at the basement level, was covered in blood as wailing survivors and relatives picked through the debris, while windows of the news agency, on the second floor, were all shattered. “We were shocked and didn’t feel the explosion at first but we saw smoke coming up from below,” said Ali Reza Ahmadi, a journalist at the agency who was sitting in his office above the centre when the attack took place. “Survivors were coming out. I saw one boy
with cuts to his feet and others with burns all over their faces,” he said. “About 10 minutes after the first explosion, there was another one outside on the street and then another one.” “SMOKE EVERYWHERE” Deputy Health Minister Feda Mohammad Paikan said 35 bodies had been brought into the nearby Istiqlal hospital. Television pictures showed many of the injured suffered serious burns. “There was a reading and an academic discussion and then there was a huge bang,” said Sayed Jan, a participant in the conference, from his bed in the hospital. “I felt my face burning and I fell down and saw other colleagues lying around me and smoke everywhere.” Islamic State said in an online statement that it was responsible for the attack, saying the centre received support from Iran. It was the latest in a series that the movement has claimed on Shi‘ite targets in Kabul. Waheed Majrooh, a spokesman for the ministry of public health, said 41 people, including four women and two children, had been killed and 84 wounded, most suffering from burns. The attack occurred during a morning panel discussion on the anniversary of the Soviet invasion of Sunni-majority Afghanistan at the Tabian Social and Cultural Centre, witnesses said.
Ex-soccer star ‘King George’ Weah wins Liberia’s presidency MONROVIA (Reuters) Former soccer star George Weah has won Liberia’s presidential run-off election and will succeed incumbent Ellen Johnson Sirleaf next month, the country’s first democratic transition in over 70 years. With 98.1 percent of the vote counted, Weah led with 61.5 percent to Vice President Joseph Boakai’s 38.5 percent, National Elections Commission Chairman Jerome Korkoyah told reporters in the capital Monrovia on Thursday. At his party headquarters outside Monrovia, tears
streamed down Weah’s face as he greeted supporters from a balcony. Below, hundreds of young people sang and danced to a live performance of Hipco, Liberian hip hop music popular with the country’s impoverished youth. “Success for George Weah is victory for the whole country,” a 47-year-old engineer named Randall Zarkpah said as he walked home with his young son through streets ringing with honking car horns and loud cheers as dusk fell. “When you feel sick for
some time and you receive proper medication - that is how I feel now. He will be good for our country. He is King George!” Weah grew up in Clara Town slum in Monrovia and went on to become the only African to win FIFA World Player of the Year, starring for AC Milan, Paris St Germain and Chelsea. His popularity at home fuelled a previous run for president, in 2005. He won the first round then but lost the second round to Johnson Sirleaf, whom he will now succeed.
Friday December 29, 2017
Brazil’s top court suspends parts of President Temer’s Christmas pardons FLORIANOPOLIS, Brazil (Reuters) - The president of Brazil’s Supreme Court suspended parts of a Christmas decree from President Michel Temer granting pardons to convicted criminals yesterday, saying Temer’s actions needed further examination by the court. Brazil’s top prosecutor, Raquel Dodge, had launched a legal challenge to the pardons on Wednesday, saying they were unconstitutional and threatened a probe into the country’s largest-ever corruption scandal. The pardons traditionally granted by the Brazilian president around Christmas are applied to criminals meeting certain conditions, including having already served part of their sentence.
President Michel Temer But Temer drew sharp criticism from public prosecutors and on social media with his Dec. 21 decree that made the rules more generous and extended them to include people convicted of corruption-related crimes.
Prosecutor-General Dodge said in a statement late on Wednesday that she was requesting an injunction to stop parts of the decree from going into effect. She said the pardons undermined the separation of powers and would grant impunity to those guilty of graft. In her decision yesterday, Cármen Lúcia, the president of the Supreme Court, ruled largely in favour of the prosecutor. A nearly four-year corruption investigation in Brazil known as Operation Car Wash has resulted in dozens of powerful businessmen and politicians being jailed for political kickbacks, usually involving private enterprises paying billions of dollars in bribes to win contracts with state-run companies.
Jamaica to export 35,000 tonnes of alumina to China KINGSTON, Jamaica - CMC – Jamaica’s largest alumina refinery, Aluminia Partners of Jamaica (ALPART), will today ship 35,000 tonnes of alumina to China , the first shipment since the plant reopened under Chinese ownership earlier this year. The plant, located in the community of Nain in the southern parish of St. Elizabeth, is owned by Jiuquan Iron and Steel Company (JISCO) Limited. In a release yesterday, Chairman of JISCO Alpart Jamaica, Liu Wanxiang said the shipment is a testimony to the management and staff of Alpart, many of who went beyond the call of duty to ensure that deadlines were met. He also thanked the Alpart team for their
work and commitment to the company and the Community Councils, which have worked closely with the company and the government and people of Jamaica for their support. The company will host its “First Shipment of Alumina Ceremony” just before the ship leaves Port Kaiser for China on Friday. In July 2016, UC RUSAL, a leading global aluminium producer, announced that it had entered into an agreement to sell a 100 per cent stake of the Alpart to the Chinese state industrial group, JISCO. The deal was worth an estimated US$299. It wasundertaken within the programme for RUSAL’s assets optimization and debt ratio reduction.
ST. GEORGE’S, Grenada - CMC – The head of the Government’s Negotiating Team (GNT), Beryl Isaac, says prison and gazetted police officers have agreed to a accept the one-off “sacrifice” payment 9offered by the Grenada government. She said that the Prison Welfare Association, the Police Welfare Association and the gazetted police officers have agreed and signed on to accept the EC$750 (One EC dollar=US$0.37 cents) offer made to workers with more than three years of service and EC$650 for workers with less than three years of service. Isaac said that the GNT is now awaiting on the other public and private sector workers including the Technical and Allied Workers Union (TAWU), the Grenada Union of Teachers (GUT), the Public Workers Union (PWU), the Bank and General Workers Union (BGWU) and the Grenada Maritime and Intellectual Workers Union (GMIWU) on whether or not they will accept the offer on behalf of their members. During the 2017 budget presentation, Prime Minister Dr Keith Mitchell announced that his administration would provide public officers with an EC$1000 one-off payment for their sacrifices during the period of 2013-16 when the island implemented a home-grown
International Monetary Fund (IMF) structural adjustment programme. “Mr. Speaker, for the first time ever, we are working toward a one-off payment agreement to every public officer who would have served a substantial portion of the period 2013-2016, in recognition of their contribution and shared sacrifice during the Home-grown programme,” Mitchell said then. But while several unions accepted the offer, TAWU and PWU rejected the offer demanding instead a one off payment of EC$3,000. They later agreed to EC$1,000 and a promised from the government to discuss the issue further. Government is offering the one off payment for 2013-16 as well as a three per cent increase for 2017 and 2018 and four per cent for 2019. Labour Minister Oliver Joseph said that the new wage agreement will cost the government an estimated EC$7.3 million. But the GNT has said that because of the Fiscal Responsibility Legislation, the government is unable to offer additional funds fearing that it will violate the 2015 legislation which put a cap of government’s salary at no more than nine per cent of the total budget annually.
Police and prison officers accept “one-off” payment
Khan urges all judges to speak up on Archie case Trinidad Guardian Senior Counsel Israel Khan has called on High Court and Court of Appeal judges to “say something” on the issue of Chief Justice Ivor Archie’s alleged “misconduct.” In an open letter to the judges, which he also sent to the media, Khan said, “Judges of this country, especially those of the Hugh Wooding Law School graduating class of 1979, should say something on the issue of CJ Archie’s alleged misconduct.” Khan noted comments by Justices Carol Gobin and Ronnie Boodoosingh, as well as former CJs Sat Sharma and Clinton Bernard on the issue. He particularly noted reported comments by Bernard on other judges’ reaction so far. “I, as the most experienced active practitioner at the Criminal Bar (37 years of which 17 as silk), now call upon the brave and courageous judges of the country to say something and not give the impression that your Lordships are only concerned with ‘to eat ah food.’ “Former CJ Bernard has chastised the sitting judges by stating in a published article that Your Lordships are ‘more concerned with how
Chief Justice Ivor Archie
Senior Counsel Israel Khan
much money you are getting at the end of the month.’ “This is a serious indictment against Your Lordships and if Your Lordships continue to remain silent, I say it with the greatest respect, then you are spineless and do not deserve to be called My Lord or Mi Lud (for mimic men).” He added: “The allegations made against Honourable Chief Justice Ivor Archie are scandalous, and if true, demonstrate he is a disgrace to the legal profession and unfit to be Chief Justice.” Khan said if Archie cannot or would not publicly refute the very serious allegations, there are only
three options open to him: “Resign now, or face a tribunal triggered under Section 137 of the Constitution and/or face criminal charge of misbehaviour in public office (15 years jail if convicted).” He said judges would be aware “that never in the history of the entire Commonwealth has a Chief Justice been accused of such scandalous misbehaviour.” “I dare say, with the greatest respect to Your Lordships, that by your silence, you are condoning CJ Archie’s alleged misbehaviour. It appears that birds of a feather flock together,” Khan added.
Friday December 29, 2017
New Governor appointed to Central Bank BRIDGETOWN, Barbados - CMC â€“ The Central Bank of Barbados will have a new governor effective January 1. Yesterday, Finance Minister Christopher Sinckler revealed that Cleviston Haynes has been appointed as Governor of the Central Bank of Barbados for a period of five years, with effect from January 1. The new Governor, who has acted in the position since February 24, has over 37 yearsâ€™ experience in central banking, with emphasis on macroeconomic policy and bank regulation. Haynes started his career at the Bank as a research trainee in 1980, and held various positions including Advisor to former Governors Calvin Springer, Winston Cox, and Dr. Marion Williams. He was Deputy Governor from February 2009 until early this year. His tenure at the Central Bank was briefly interrupted from 1987 to 1989, when he served as technical assistant to the Canadian Executive Director at the International
Cleviston Haynes Monetary Fund (IMF). Haynes attended the University of the West Indies, Cave Hill Campus, where he received a Bachelor of Science in Economics. He later went on to the University of Western Ontario and earned a Master of Arts in Economics. He has also authored and co-authored a number of publications, principally on economic policy, debt and financial sector issues.
Friday December 29, 2017
Friday December 29, 2017
Sabbir Rahman being investigated Miller looking to lift Scorpions as for allegedly assaulting fan first class season winds down ESPNcricinfo Bangladesh BCB’s cricket operations committee chairman batsman Sabbir Rahman faces possible punishment after he reportedly assaulted a fan during a first-class match in Rajshahi last week. The incident is said to have taken place on the second day of Rajshahi Division’s National Cricket League game against Dhaka Metropolis. According to reports, after a supporter made a noise directed at Sabbir during one of the innings breaks, Sabbir took permission from the on-field umpires to leave the ground and then went behind the sight screen to physically abuse the young boy, who had apparently been brought into the playing area by an acquaintance of Sabbir’s. The incident was supposedly first seen by the reserve umpire who reported it to the match referee, who in turn reported it to the
Akram Khan, who then forwarded it to the board’s disciplinary committee. This was as per procedure, since Sabbir is being investigated for a level-4 offence. According to sources, Sabbir was also quite “aggressive” with match referee Showkatur Rahman, when he called him in on the third day of the game to investigate the incident. Sheikh Sohel, vice-chairman of the disciplinary committee, said that Sabbir would be subjected to heavy punishment if found guilty. In the case of level-4 offences, penalties include multiple-match bans in addition to a fine of Tk 5 lakh (US$6,000 approx). Sohel told the Prothom Alo newspaper: “The moment I get the report, we will call him. But after seeing the report if we feel we don’t need to talk to him, we will quickly mete out the punishment.”
Friday December 29, 2017 ARIES (Mar. 21–Apr. 19) You might be caught off guard by how quickly the magic dissipates and everything returns to normal. Of course, normal isn’t what it used to be, yet you are secretly happy that the pace is not so hectic.
LIBRA (Sept. 23–Oct. 22) A current wave of nostalgia anchors you in the past while your sentimentality mellows your personality and adds to your current charm. Most folks like being around you because your emotions are innocently transparent.
TAURUS (Apr. 20–May 20) You are in your element today and can carry nearly any load with grace. Rather than being called stubborn, people will praise your unrelenting determination.
SCORPIO (Oct. 23–Nov. 21) You want to be fair in your dealings with people, yet your emotional rigidity may be worrisome for those within your sphere of influence.
GEMINI (May 21–June 20) Beneath your easy-going surface, you are solid like the rock of Gibraltar today. You can charm people with your lighthearted approach, but they quickly realize you are a force not to be trifled with now. CANCER (June 21–July 22) You’re a pleasure to be around today, unless someone pushes you too far. Your sensitivity to other people’s feelings endears you to them, increasing your popularity. However, your external sweetness hides your immovable inner core.
SAGIT (Nov. 22–Dec. 21) Although you tend to be philosophical in nature, your practical understanding of your world is strong today. If you are currently considering enrolling in an educational program, youre probably doing it to get ahead rather than to study something purely for the sake of learning. CAPRI (Dec. 22–Jan. 19) Karma is working in your favor now, setting you up for the sweet rewards you deserve. Although you may court material success, acquiring worldly goods will not satisfy your spiritual needs.
LEO (July 23–Aug. 22) No one has any doubt about where you stand today because you freely make your position known. Thankfully, you’re not likely to make an error in judgment as long as you stick with the facts.
AQUARIUS (Jan. 20–Feb. 18) Your career goals seem less important now as your emotional and spiritual life move to the front burner. Although financial riches have their place, developing your soul’s potential is more important than anything else.
VIRGO (Aug. 23–Sept. 22) Although there may be no such thing as a perfect day, you have a wonderful opportunity to creatively express yourself and progress along your chosen path.
PISCES (Feb. 19–Mar. 20) Your meticulous plans for the day are a departure from your recent excursions into the Land of Uncertainty. You love getting lost in your dreams, but must work on remembering when to wake up.
CHRISTCHURCH, New Zealand, CMC – Left-arm spinner Nikita Miller says he is anxious to return to the cut and thrust of the Regional Four-Day Championship, and is hoping his recent international stint with West Indies will serve as personal inspiration for the remaining rounds of the competition. The 35-year-old played his first One-Day International in nearly three years when he turned out in the final game of the the threematch series on Boxing Day, which the Windies lost by 66 runs under Duckworth/Lewis. With three rounds of the first class season remaining, Miller said it was important he hit the ground running once he returned to action with Jamaica Scorpions. “There are three games left in the current first class season and I think we’re midtable so I’m looking forward to going back and helping the team,” said Miller who captains the franchise. “When I left home I was the leading bowler for my team and second in the league so hopefully I can go back and contribute some wickets and also some runs as well. “When I left I had a halfcentury as well so hopefully I can take this experience at this level of facing Trent Boult in good form … and apply it to the first class season and prepare myself for the [World Cup] qualifiers.” Miller has been limited to just two first class games, after missing the first three rounds as he recuperated from surgery. He then missed the last two rounds after being called up for West Indies duty. However, he made a huge impact in the two matches he played, snapping up a whopping 23 wickets as Scorpions beat Leeward Islands Hurricanes and Windward Islands Volcanoes handily, to post their first wins of the season. Miller said he was also focussed on performing well in the Regional Super50 as he eyed selection for the World Cup qualifiers in Zimabwe next March. “There’s also the Super50 so I’m just looking forward to that in order to get proper practice so that if I’m selected for the qualifiers, I would be ready and prepared for that.” Miller was a surprise callup for the New Zealand series, especially after having been ignored since playing the last of 46 ODIs during the last World Cup in New Zealand and Australia. In the third ODI at Hagley Oval here which was reduced
Left-arm spinner Nikita Miller
to 23 overs per side because of rain, Miller claimed one for 26 and finished on 20 not out, as West Indies suffered a 3-0 whitewash in the series. Despite the result, Miller said he was pleased with his performance. “I felt really good to be back. It was a tough return, yes,” he conceded. “First of all, the weather was very poor but in terms of
the game I don’t think that we executed properly when we batted. New Zealand really batted well and they bowled well as well. “In terms of my performance, I think I did ok with the ball and also with the bat so it was a pretty good return.” The regional first class season resumes January 4 with the eighth round.
Friday December 29, 2017
George Weah: Ex-AC Milan, Chelsea & Man City striker elected Liberia president
George Weah will succeed Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa’s first elected female president. (Getty Images) BBC Sport - Former Chelsea, Manchester City and AC Milan striker George Weah will be the next president of Liberia. Weah, 51, became the first non-European player to win the Ballon d’Or in 1995 - just one of many achievements over a prolific 18-year professional career that ended in 2003. He entered politics after his retirement and had been serving as a senator in Liberia’s parliament. His victory was announced by Liberia’s National Elections Commission yesterday - it said that with 98.1% of ballots counted, Weah had won 61.5% of the vote. He will succeed Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa’s first elected female president. She defeated Weah in elections in 2005, held shortly after the end of a brutal civil war. How good was Weah the player? Weah’s most famous goal for AC Milan was a solo effort against Verona which started in his own penalty area For a few years in the 1990s, Weah was among the best strikers in world football. Capable of scoring all sorts of goals, his most famous moment came while playing for AC Milan in 1996 when he scored a solo effort against Verona which started in his own penalty area and saw him dribble past almost an entire team. First brought to Europe b y A r s e n e We n g e r a t M o n a c o i n 1 9 8 8 , We a h scored 47 league goals for the club in four years before a move to Paris StGermain. There he won the league title in 1994 and was the top scorer in the Champions League a year
later - finishing ahead of Jari Litmanen, Romario and Hristo Stoichkov - before moving to Milan in 1995. Playing alongside Roberto Baggio, Weah won Serie A in his first season with the club and won it again in 1999 but eventually fell out of favour and had short spells with both Chelsea and Manchester City in the Premier League. But he scored just four goals in the English top flight though before returning to France though he did add the FA Cup to his trophy collection with the Blues. At international level, Weah was unable to help Liberia reach a World Cup but he did play in two Cup of Nations, scoring against Mali in 2002. From sport to politics Weah is not the first sports star to move from the pitch to the political world. Sebastian Coe went from Olympic champion to the House of Lords, via the Commons, and is now head of athletics’ world governing body the IAAF. One of Britain’s greatest Paralympic athletes, Tanni Grey-Thompson won 11 gold, four silver and a bronze medal at five Paralympic Games. In 2005, she became a Dame and in March 2010 was made a life peer and sits in the House of Lords as Baroness GreyThompson. Cricketer Imran Khan captained Pakistan to victory at the 1992 World Cup, but he has spent the past 20 years in politics. He formed the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf party in 1996 and has been leader of the opposition since 2013. Chess legend Garry Kasparov stood for the Russian presidency in 2007 and is an outspoken critic of Vladimir Putin. He is
chairman of the Human Rights Foundation. A s a b o x e r, M a n n y Pacquiao won world titles at five weights over a 12year career, with his payper-view fights earning a reported $1.2bn (£893m). But he is now a senator in the Philippines. Vitali Klitschko, the three-time world heavyweight champion boxer is mayor of Kiev in his native Ukraine. He has previously spoken of his desire to run for the country’s presidency. What was it like to play with Weah? Former Netherlands defender Mario Melchiot, who played with Weah at Chelsea, on BBC World Service. He was a great player, but also - what a person. After he came to Chelsea he walked in the dressing room and asked me: Can I sit next to you? Can you imagine? I said: ‘Dude, you can sit wherever you want’. We used to call him ‘Mr Weah’, because he was a top man. His personality and the game, together - that made him who he is today. Now, having been elected president, he has got what he has been fighting for for so long. Ex-Bermuda striker Shaun Goater was at Manchester City when Weah joined in 2000. Good luck to him, because he was brilliant. He came in and was just so humble. This was one of the world’s best players - we were just thinking: ‘My...’ When he was leaving, I was out doing extra training and I said: ‘George have you got any spare boots?’ You just wanted to have something of his. But in the dressing room everything was cleaned out. They took the lot!
Fitness comes first for returning Murray, Djokovic (Reuters) - Former world number ones Andy Murray and Novak Djokovic are relishing their return to competition after serious injuries cut their last campaigns short, but the overriding aim for both players in the New Year is to stay fit and healthy. Murray, who has struggled with a persistent hip injury since the Briton’s quarterfinal exit at Wimbledon in July, pulled out of the U.S. Open and dropped to 16th in the world rankings. The 30-year-old is scheduled to participate in the Brisbane International which starts on Dec. 31 as he gears up for the Australian Open, but a season blighted by injury has changed the double Wimbledon champion’s outlook. “When I was fit and healthy last year (2016), you think about winning all the major events, getting to number one and winning every competition that you are in and that is what drives you,” Murray told Sky Sports. “When you miss four or five months and there has been a bit of uncertainty about my hip (that changes). The goals change and I remember now how much I loved playing tennis — it isn’t about winning every match I
play in the future or winning more slams. “I want to get back to playing tennis, I want to be fit and healthy and that is what is driving me just now... I was pretty unhealthy for most of this year and I am getting there but it is a slow process.” Djokovic suffered a year-long dip in form before an elbow injury forced him to retire in the Wimbledon quarter-finals. The Serb has not played competitively since and underwent surgery. “It’s been a real roller-coaster ride for me for a year and a half with this issue,” world number 12 Djokovic told Sport360 in an interview ahead of his return at the World Tennis Championship in Abu Dhabi. “I’ve never had surgery in my life, I’ve never had any major injuries that kept me away from the tour for such a long time... I’ve learned a lesson because I really want to avoid getting to that stage of an injury ever in my career after this. “I can’t wait to get back on the competition level but it was a great experience for me to have. And it was a somewhat necessary experience because I got maybe too comfortable with not having major injuries.”
Former Peru soccer official found not guilty in U.S. FIFA bribery case (Reuters) - Former Peru soccer federation president, Manuel Burga, was found not guilty on Tuesday of racketeering conspiracy by a U.S. jury in New York. Burga was charged along with Juan Angel Napout, the former president of the South American soccer governing body CONMEBOL and Paraguay’s soccer federation, and Jose Maria Marin, former president of Brazil’ soccer federation, with taking bribes in exchange for the award of valuable marketing and media rights to international soccer matches. The three men were the first to stand trial on charges brought by U.S. prosecutors in 2015 as part of investigations of world soccer’s governing body FIFA. Napout and Marin were both convicted on several counts on Friday, following a five-week trial in federal court in Brooklyn. The jury said at the time it was deadlocked on the single count against Burga. Speaking to reporters outside the courtroom after the verdict was read, Burga, 60, said the criminal proceeding had been an ordeal for his family and that he was eager to spend time with them in Peru. Burga’s lawyer, Bruce Udolf, said the verdict was the “right thing to do” but that he had expected Burga to be found guilty because a question posed by the jury suggested it was siding with the prosecutors. U.S. prosecutors have charged 42 people and entities in the case, at least 24 of whom have pleaded guilty. Several of those testified for prosecutors in
Former Peru FA president Manuel Burga, left, was acquitted in the FIFA bribery scandal on Tuesday. this trial, telling of corruption that went far beyond the defendants in the courtroom. Alejandro Burzaco, the former head of Argentine sports marketing company Torneos y Competencias, told jurors in November that he paid bribes to all three defendants to secure rights to matches including the Copa America and Copa Libertadores. Burzaco had pleaded guilty and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors. Burzaco also said that Fox Sports, Mexico’s Grupo Televisa and Brazil’s Globo paid bribes for media rights to games. Fox and Globo denied being involved in bribery, while Televisa declined to comment after Burzaco’s testimony. Burzaco also said that Qatar bribed officials of soccer’s world governing body FIFA to host the 2022 World Cup. Hassan alThawadi, secretary of Qatar’s Supreme Committee for Delivery
& Legacy, which is organizing the event, has denied the allegations. Santiago Pena, a former financial manager at Argentine sports marketing firm Full Play, walked the jury through a spreadsheet detailing what he said were payments to eight CONMEBOL officials, including Napout and Burga. The trial was marred by tragedy in its first week, when Argentine police said that Jorge Delhon, a former lawyer for the country’s Futbol Para Todos (Soccer for All), program had committed suicide after Burzaco named him in his testimony. The next day, U.S. District Judge Pamela Chen put Burga under house arrest after prosecutors said he threatened Burzaco by making a slicing motion across his throat. Udolf, Burga’s lawyer, denied that his client threatened Burzaco.
Cook double-century puts England in command MELBOURNE (Reuters) - Alastair Cook struck a masterful, unbeaten double-century to drive England into a position of dominance on 491 for nine at the end of day three of the fourth Ashes test yesterday. The former England captain strode off the Melbourne Cricket Ground on 244 not out, the highest ever score by a touring batsman at the venue, having pushed his side to a first innings lead of 164 runs. Stuart Broad provided gallant support with a swashbuckling 56, sharing a 100-run ninthwicket partnership that crushed the spirits of a demoralised attack and trampled on Australia’s hopes of whitewashing the series. The urn may be gone with England an irretrievable 3-0 down in the five-match series, but Joe Root’s team will savour the finest day of the campaign and are well-placed to grab a consolation win. Cook smashed a straight drive past bowler Jackson Bird for his 23rd four to raise his fifth double-century in 360 balls, triggering a standing ovation from the crowd of 61,839. It was not a chanceless innings, however, with Australia captain Steve Smith dropping him on 66 on Wednesday and again on 153. The pitch was a batsman’s paradise and the Australian attack shorn of injured spearhead Mitchell Starc, but England’s most prolific run-scorer may remember few more gratifying innings in his 151 tests. “Probably one of the more emotional (ones)... from where I’d been on this tour,” Cook, who was woefully out of form prior to Melbourne, told reporters of his 409-ball knock. “It meant a lot last night and then today I was quite proud that I managed to back it up after all the emotion came out yesterday. To get a real big one for the team was really important.” Cook, who resumed on 104 not out, capped a memorable day with a sumptuous cover drive for four off all-rounder Mitchell Marsh, lifting him past Brian Lara to sixth on the all-time test runs list. Broad was brave in support, wearing a short-pitched battering before paying Australia’s pacemen back in an counterattacking innings of eight fours and a six. He bookended his fifty with two fours off Pat Cummins before holing out with a miscued
Friday December 29, 2017
pull that was caught in the deep by a diving Usman Khawaja, with replays suggesting the fielder may have spilled the ball onto the turf as he rolled over. CLUMSYATTEMPT England resumed on 360-6 after tea, before Chris Woakes quickly fell for 26 after gloving a catch behind from a clumsy attempt at a pull shot and debutant Tom Curran added just four runs before edging Josh Hazlewood to wicketkeeper Tim Paine. Broad came to the wicket and was hit on the shoulder by a bouncer from paceman Hazlewood but the tail-ender weathered the barrage to slog England past 400. England’s batting had been brittle throughout the series, but for once the wickets fell slowly rather than in clumps. Cook and Root had built a 138-run partnership before the England captain fell for 61 in the morning, mistiming a pull shot straight to Nathan Lyon at deep square leg. Dawid Malan squandered his wicket for 14 when he failed to review an lbw decision despite edging the ball from Hazlewood. It was the second England wicket to fall lbw with a nick in the innings, with number three James Vince failing to review his dismissal on the second day. Off-spinner Lyon struck twice after lunch to reduce England to 307-6, with Jonny Bairstow (22) and Moeen Ali (20) both falling to poor shot selections. Having dismissed Moeen for the sixth time in the series, Lyon gave the all-rounder a generous verbal spray as he trudged off after driving in the air to Shaun Marsh at short cover. Cook and Woakes then steadied England with a vital 59-run partnership that pushed them past Australia’s first innings 327 before Broad helped extend the lead out past three figures. Australia coach Darren Lehmann conceded the hosts’ whitewash bid was all but over. “We’ll have to get 450 in a day. How do you want us to do that? Slog?” he said. “From our point of view we’ll just be hopefully batting the day and reassessing what happens after tomorrow.” Scores: England 9 for 491 (Cook 244*, Root 61, Broad 56, Hazlewood 3-95) lead Australia 327 by 164 runs.
Josh Hazlewood removed Dawid Malan with the new ball, but replays showed an inside edge - the second of the innings ©Getty Images
Hamilton joins Vettel in the fight for fifth title
Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel in Abu Dhabi. (Giuseppe Cacace/AFP/Getty Images) LONDON (Reuters) - Formula One entered a new era in 2017 and next year promises another first even if Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton keep on winning. The Briton’s fourth title, in the sport’s first season under new U.S.-based owners Liberty Media after the Bernie Ecclestone decades, has set the scene for an unprecedented battle on the track in 2018. Never before have two quadruple world champions fought each other for a fifth crown but Hamilton and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel will be lining up to do just that come the Australian season-opener on March 25. How they shape up will be fascinating to watch, with Hamilton staying remarkably cool and composed in 2017 while Vettel let the rising pressure get to him and occasionally blew his top. Hamilton rewrote significant chunks of the record books in 2017, overtaking Jackie Stewart to become his country’s most successful driver of all time and first to take four titles. He took his tally of wins to 62, more than anyone other than retired seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher (91), and eclipsed the German’s all-time record of pole positions to end the season with 72. The 32-year-old scored in every race, while Vettel’s challenge faded amid collisions and mechanical failures. Mercedes completed the championship double for the fourth year in a row, despite rule changes that made the cars faster and wider on fatter tires. Hamilton won nine of the 20 races while Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, the overall runnerup after leading until September, took five. Ferrari, whose last driver’s championship was with Kimi Raikkonen in 2007, aim to be stronger in 2018 — when there will be one more race and the engine quota is reduced from four to three per driver. “I can’t expect him to make the same mistakes,” said Hamilton before collecting his winner’s trophy. “I’ve got to make sure I‘m even better next year to stay ahead of him.” MCLAREN REVIVAL? With Vettel’s team mate Raikkonen nearing the end of his career and Valtteri Bottas some way off Hamilton at Mercedes, Renault must also raise their game if others are to enter the title reckoning. The French manufacturer now has former
champions McLaren on the list of engine customers after that team’s tortured relationship with Honda finally ended. Spaniard Fernando Alonso, a double world champion who missed Monaco in May to try and win the Indianapolis 500, can hope to be back on the podium for the first time since 2014 when he was at Ferrari. Honda, who could at least celebrate Takuma Sato becoming the first Japanese to win the Indy 500, now focus on Red Bullowned Toro Rosso. Red Bull won three races with Renault engines, with Dutch 20-year-old Max Verstappen and Australian Daniel Ricciardo increasingly taking the fight to Mercedes and Ferrari. One of those victories proved a highlight of the season, with Ricciardo triumphant in Azerbaijan in a cracker of a race. It was also a low point for Vettel, who collided with Hamilton behind the safety car in an incident of ‘road rage’. “The worst feeling I had was after Baku I think, just because I sort of ruined the race with something unnecessary, so I struggled with that,” the Ferrari driver said. Hamilton won the title in Mexico but singled out winning at Silverstone as a highlight because of the support he received from the home fans after the ‘negativity’ surrounding his absence from an earlier London event. That free demonstration was part of Liberty’s plans to bring the sport closer to fans and raise the profile. The jury remains out on their efforts, with teams concerned about a drop in revenues next season as a result of the increased spending. There are also some big battles looming over the sport’s direction, with Ferrari warning they could walk away after contracts expire in 2020 if they do not like what is being offered. Those who left the scene in 2017, apart from 87-year-old Ecclestone who was handed an emeritus title and attended only a handful of races, included retiring Brazilian Felipe Massa and Britain’s Jolyon Palmer. The Malaysian Grand Prix also bowed out but France returns next season for the first time since 2008, and as part of an unprecedented triple header with Austria and Britain, while Germany is also back after a year’s absence.
Friday December 29, 2017
Highlights of Wednesday’s NBA games (The Sports Xchange) Highlights of Wednesday’s National Basketball Association games: Pelicans 128, Nets 113 Anthony Davis scored a team-high 33 points, DeMarcus Cousins had 27 points and 14 rebounds, and Rajon Rondo dished out a career-high 25 assists to power the New Orleans Pelicans to a 128-113 victory over the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday night at the Smoothie King Center. Jrue Holiday added 23 points and E‘Twaun Moore had 20 for the Pelicans, who won their third consecutive game. The Nets lost for the seventh time in eight games. Brooklyn was led by Caris LeVert with 22 points. Davis also had a seasonhigh six blocks and tied a career high with four made 3pointers. Kings 109, Cavaliers 95 Vince Carter scored 24 points in Sacramento’s improbable win over Cleveland. The 40-year-old guard,
Vince Carter celebrates after a play against the Cleveland Cavaliers. (Photo: Sergio Estrada, USA TODAY Sports) who missed the team’s previous three games — two by coach’s decision and one as a result of rib pain — received multiple standing ovations from the Golden 1
Center crowd. He finished 10 of 12 from the field and had big-time shots to answer almost every time Cleveland tried to cut into the lead. Cleveland’s LeBron James
Dexter Marques set for shot at Commonwealth Title in UK next March Guyanese to battles Venezuelans on Jan. 20 @ CASH Dexter Marques will headline a magnificent intercountry card as he prepares for his upcoming Commonwealth title shot in March, 2018 and since Marques will be the underdog in that match, it is anticipated that his rigorous training will enable him to put on pleasing display on January 20th next at the Cliff Anderson Sports Hall as he prepares for the fight that could change his life, and give Guyana its next world title. The current Caribbean and Guyana Flyweight Champion was appointed as the Mandatory challenger for the Commonwealth
Flyweight Title against current champion Jay Harris of Wales, UK, and that bout will be held on March 31, 2018 at the Copperbox Arena and is being promoted by Frank Warren’s Queensberry Promotions. In what is being seen as a patriotic battle for country pride, Venezuelans will square off against G u y a n e s e fighters on January 20th, 2018 and the card will also feature Elton Dharry, a Wo r l d - C l a s s c o n t e n d e r undefeated in his last 16 fights joining Dexter ‘Cobra’ Gonsalves, Guyana’s reigning Lightweight champion who narrowly lost
‘Guyana on the right track... From page 42 tests, random tests on athletes at those events that were hosted in 2017. So, as it stands with anti-doping, I can say that Guyana is where it ought to be in terms of having a representative and paying subscription fees to both the regional and international body,” Jones explained. Additionally, it was also disclosed that some athletes were caught in the act of cheating. However, Jones explained that the names of those athletes cannot be made public at the moment. “I cannot disclose that because even if there was seemingly a violation, after the due process, a pronouncement is made, so only until after a pronouncement is made on penalizing an athlete, then that information will be made public.” Jones said that it must be made clear that the work of the representative and his/her team entails conducting tests on random athletes, in any sporting event, at any given time to ensure that there is a level playing field. In 2018, the responsibilities of the representative and team are expected to expand.
a decision to world-ranked DeMarcus Corley in his last outing. ‘The Cobra’ will seek to make amends for that loss as he prepares to fight the Bahamian Lightweight champion Meacher Major in the Bahamas. A victory over the tough Bahamian will once again put Gonsalves in the picture for a Commonwealth title shot. The Guyana Boxing Board of Control continues to support the amateur ranks and create a path for young fighters as the card will also feature four fighters from the Venezuelan Amateur team putting their pugilistic skills and patriotism on the line against top Guyanese Amateur fighters. Fans are encouraged to come out in support of this Inter-Country rivalry which would test the limits of our local fighters as they go up against the very best that Venezuela has to offer. Tickets will be on sale at the Giftland Stores and Assuria General Insurance offices in Georgetown, Diamond, Berbice, Parika, and Vreedenhoop. For more information on this event, sponsorship, ticket prices, and boxer bios, please contact the GBBC on 226 9236 / 226 9245 or NexGen Global Marketing Services on 668 7419 / 645 0944 / 231 0861.
had a triple-double of 16 points, 14 assists and 10 rebounds. Bulls 92, Knicks 87 Kris Dunn scored 17 points and hit a pair of free throws with 7.8 seconds remaining, and Lauri Markkanen finished with 12 points as Chicago rallied to beat New York. Robin Lopez finished with 11 points for Chicago, which has won nine of its last 11 games. Justin Holiday, who capped the victory with two free throws in the closing seconds, also finished with 11 points in the victory. Kristaps Porzingis led New York with 23 points to go along with 17 by Courtney Lee and 11 by Jarrett Jack. The Knicks lost their third straight game. Warriors 126, Jazz 101 Kevin Durant ignited a third-quarter runaway with consecutive dunks, propelling Golden State to a victory over Utah. Durant had 21 points, six rebounds, four assists and three blocked shots without playing in the fourth q u a r t e r. The Warriors improved to 9-1 since Stephen Curry left the lineup with a sprained right ankle earlier this month. Playing their second road game in two nights, the Jazz led by as many as seven points in the second quarter and trailed only 48-47 at halftime. Rodney Hood paced Utah with 26 points. Timberwolves 128, Nuggets 125 (OT) Jimmy Butler scored 12 of his game-high 39 points in
overtime to help Minnesota top Denver. Butler picked up the slack in overtime after KarlAnthony Towns and Taj Gibson fouled out and point guard Jeff Teague exited with an injury. The Timberwolves won their fifth game in a row while halting the Nuggets’ winning streak at three games. Denver got 28 points from Will Barton. Thunder 124, Raptors 107 Paul George had 33 points, and Russell Westbrook added 30 points and 13 assists as Oklahoma City beat Toronto. Carmelo Anthony and Steven Adams contributed 18 points apiece for the Thunder. C.J. Miles led the Raptors with 20 points, and Jonas Valanciunas added 16 points. DeMar DeRozan had 15 points but made just four of 16 shots from the floor. Hawks 113, Wizards 99 Dennis Schroder erupted for 16 of his 21 points in the second half, leading Atlanta to a win over Washington. Ersan Ilyasova chipped in with 20 points while Marco Belinelli helped with 19 off the bench for Atlanta. The victory marked the first time this season that the Hawks won consecutive games. Bradley Beal led the Wizards with 20 points, and Markieff Morris scored 18. John Wall had 10 points and 11 rebounds in the loss. Mavericks 98, Pacers 94 Dirk Nowitzki scored 15 points to lead six players in double figures in Dallas’ victory over Indiana.
Harrison Barnes and Yogi Ferrell each had 13 points for Dallas. Wesley Matthews and Dwight Powell added 12 points apiece, and Devin Harris scored 10 for the Mavericks, who shot 51.3 percent from the field. Indiana got 16 points apiece from Myles Turner, Lance Stephenson and Darren Collison. Stephenson added 15 rebounds. Celtic 102, Hornets 91 Rookie Jayson Tatum scored 10 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter, and Al Horford and Kyrie Irving combined for 41 points as Boston closed out Charlotte. Irving scored 21 points and handed out eight assists, and Horford added 20 points and 11 rebounds for the Celtics, who had lost three of their previous four games, including a Christmas Day defeat to the Washington Wizards. Kemba Walker led the Hornets with 24 points. Grizzlies 109, Lakers 99 A 32-point performance from guard Tyreke Evans helped Memphis capitalize on a sluggish Los Angeles offensive performance. Jarell Martin had 20 points, Andrew Harrison recorded 15 points, Deyonta Davis scored 14 points, and Marc Gasol finished with 11 points, nine rebounds, five assists and three blocked shots for the Grizzlies. With a shoulder injury sidelining rookie point guard Lonzo Ball, the Los Angeles offene stagnated. Brandon Ingram led the Lakers with 23 points.
annals of local football is assured. We hope that this message may, in some small way, be a source of support and comfort to bereaved relatives and friends.” Meanwhile, Forde recognised Humphrey’s contribution to football: “Mr. Humphrey made an invaluable contribution to
football by investing significantly in tournaments through Humphrey’s Bakery and Farm Products Company Ltd. and provided support to many national teams. We would hope that in some way, our words of comfort may bring a little bit of peace and solace in this time of sadness.”
GFF expresses condolence to families of football partners
The Guyana Football Federation (GFF) has expressed condolence to the families of two persons on the passing of their loved ones who have made contributions to the football fraternity in various capacities. Winston Callender, former national player and Vice President of the GFF, and George H u m p h r e y o f Humphrey’s Bakery and Farm Products Company Ltd., a contributor to national teams and GFF’s projects, have passed within the past days. In a letter to the family of Callender, GFF President Wayne Forde expressed gratitude for his service: “We are very grateful for Mr. Callender’s service to the game as a national player and later in an administrative capacity up to 2008 as a Vice President on the GFF Executive. His place in the
UDFA GT Beer semifinals on tonight Tonight is semifinal’s night in this year’s Upper Demerara Football Association / GT Beer 5th Christmas championship where the defending champions Silver Shattas will take on Botafago in the first game at 19.00hrs and the second at 21.00hrs is between Eagles United and Net Rockers at the Mackenzie Sports Club ground.. On Wednesday night Botafago booked themselves a final’s four slot with a 3-0 whipping of Topp XX as Net Rockers knocked out Blueberry Hill by a 6-4 scoreline. Botafago did not waste time in getting on the score sheet and in the 11thminute they took the lead through Jamal Haynes before doubling it in the second half when in the 53rd minute Donavan Francis, who scored in their previous win, collected neatly executed in the 18 yards box by banging home goal number two for his team. On the stroke of game time Shane Haynes would formalise that win when he
Friday December 29, 2017
Champions Shattas face Botafago, Net Rockers clash with Eagles United
Orande Wills of Net Rockers
Denzil Pryce of Net Rockers
netted in the 93rd minute as they comfortably came way winners by a 3-0 margin. The other semifinal would see Net Rockers being down early as the 5thminute through a goal from Roydon Arthur but they quickly asserted themselves and took control through goals by Orande Wills and Denzil Pryce in the 11th and 36th minutes of play
respectively making it a 3-1 advantage. Net Rockers would then dominate, while the Hill boys were playing catch-up football matching goals, but remained adrift in the end 6-4. Pryce would get other goals in the 80 and 87th minute of the game for his quadruple, while the other was netted by Clarence Huggins in the 78th minute.
Ukraine chess champion ready for praise and blame over Saudi boycott
Ukrainian chess grandmaster Anna Muzychuk. (Karin Jaafar - AFP) LVIV, Ukraine (Reuters) - Ukrainian chess champion Anna Muzychuk is ready for both praise and blame for boycotting this week’s world speed chess championship in Saudi Arabia - something which means she will lose two world titles and pass up substantial earnings. The 27-year-old Muzychuk is refusing to defend her titles in rapid and blitz chess in Riyadh in protest at the host country’s record on women’s rights. Rules governing women’s status meant she would have been made to feel “a secondary creature”, she said in a Facebook post. Muzychuk, speaking to Reuters in her home town of Lviv, said she made the decision knowing she would relinquish both her titles and earnings from taking part. Her younger
sister Mariya, a former women’s world chess champion, would also stay away from Riyadh. “As to whether it was right or wrong, there will certainly be people who will support me and people who will condemn me,” Muzychuk said. “But I took this decision and I am responsible for it.” Saudi Arabia ended a ban on women driving in September but the conservative kingdom’s male guardianship system requires women to have a male relative’s approval for decisions on issues like education, employment, marriage and travel plans. More than 200 players from 70 countries are participating in the World Rapid and Blitz Chess Championships, which bear the name of King Salman bin Abdulaziz. In what the World Chess Federation (FIDE) called an “historic agreement”, Saudi Arabia relaxed its dress code for the tournament, which has a total prize pot of $2 million. This meant women would not need to wear the hijab or abaya — the loose-fitting, fulllength robes that women are typically expected to wear. Instead, inside the venue, women could wear dark formal trouser suits and highnecked white blouses. But these changes did not go far enough for Muzychuk. “I have refused to go,” she said. “It was certainly quite difficult to take such a decision because I am a current world champion in these chess disciplines – rapid chess and blitz. So if I do not participate in this tournament, I will lose both titles.” More controversy has dogged the tournament as seven Israelis have been denied visas to participate, a FIDE vice president said. It would have marked the first time Saudi Arabia had publicly hosted Israelis as the Gulf state does not recognize Israel and there are no formal ties between them.
Apart from Arthur’s goal, Kwesi Tafawa would score in the 77th minute and Troy Miller in the 85th and 90th plus three minutes for Blueberry Hill as the Rockers moved through 6-4. Botafago playing in the first semifinal will likely have Ronaldo Hernandez between the uprights as Kevin David will be the central defender, Jashawn Moore in the middle with Donovan Francis joining the strike force of the Haynes brothers Jamal and Shane. In seeking to make a successful title defence Shattas will likely suit up with Kellon Major in goal with the defence surrounding Romel Matthews with Dexter Garraway scheming in tandem with Michael Wilson, while goal scoring Robin Adams, Damion Williams, young Jehu Regis and Jamine Samuels will be up front. Net Rockers and Eagles should be locked in a tense battle from 21.00hrs. Eagles are building their hopes on the likes of the experienced Clive DeNobrega in the middle to hold things together as he has up front Kwesi Quintin and Kellon Primo, while at the back line is Randy Small. But Net Rockers Coach ‘Axe-Man’ Wills thinks he has the right chemistry to take him all the way without mentioning players. He said the goals that they gave up in their last game were because of a miscalculation as he wanted to rest some players. However, he said they are going to show their worth in a concentrated play of total football.
Police, UG lead GCA first division two-day points table Police SC and University of Guyana are currently leading the points table of the Georgetown Cricket Association (GCA) GISE/Star Party Rentals Trophy Stall first Division (2-Day) Cricket Competition which is currently on hold due to the inclement weather. First Division Two-day ZONE-A Teams Matches Played Points Police SC 2 57 Everest CC 2 30 GCC 2 6 DCC 0 0 Malteenoes SC 0 0 ZONE-B UG 3 57 GNIC 2 16 Transport SC 3 43 GDF 2 15 GYO 2 31 Noble House Sea Foods second division two-day ZONE-A GNIC 1 5 Sophia CC 3 44 Ace Warriors CC 3 43 Malteenoes SC 3 43 Police SC 3 66 UG 2 19 GDF 1 5 ZONE-B Diplomats SC 3 28 Everest CC 4 92 DCC 4 92 Transport SC 4 72 GYO 4 66 GCC 2 20 New Building Society second division 40-over ZONE-A UG 4 80 Ace Warriors CC 4 35 Police SC 2 18 MYO 1 19 Transport SC 3 60 Everest CC 2 26 GDF 3 13 Diplomats SC 2 10 ZONE-B DCC 2 23 GCC 5 98 Third Class CC 2 26 Sophia CC 3 32 GYO 3 14 Malteenoes SC 2 19 GNIC 1 3
NBA: Rondo tallies 25 assists for highest total in 21 years
New Orleans Pelicans guard Rajon Rondo.
(Reuters) - New Orleans point guard Rajon Rondo dished out an NBA season-high 25 assists on Wednesday against the Brooklyn Nets to become the first player to reach the total in 21 years. Rondo delivered the 25 assists in just 30 minutes to help the Pelicans top the Nets 128-113. Jason Kidd was the last player to achieve 25 assists back in 1996. The record for most assists in a single NBA game is held by Scott Skiles, who tallied 30 in 1990. Rondo, who joined the Pelicans on a one-year deal in the off-season, put his passing skills on full display in helping four New Orleans players score more than 20 points on Wednesday. The 31-year-old Rondo had a previous career-best of 24 assists.
Published on Dec 29, 2017