Fraudsters scam Nigerians with Russia World Cup passes

first_imgPutin’s, Xi’s ruler-for-life moves pose challenges to West Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Russian charity Alternativa said it had helped about 50 Nigerians stranded in Russia and estimated there were about 200 in difficulty overall.“With globalization, the opportunities for criminals are also increasing. The Fan IDs make an extremely profitable business for them,” said the group’s spokeswoman, Yulia Siluyanova.‘Natural’ problem Siluyanova told AFP on Thursday that authorities in cooperation with Alternativa had made arrangements for about 20 stranded Nigerians to be flown back home.Foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told a news briefing that the issue of stranded fans was “not desirable but it’s also natural”.“It’s really a problem that primarily the fans themselves should resolve along with diplomatic and consular missions of their countries,” she said.The Nigerian embassy did not respond to requests for comment.“You can’t rule out that some of the foreign guests, taking advantage of visiting the World Cup, are counting in some way or another, usually illegally, on crossing the Russian border and entering one of the European countries,” Zakharova said.“If such an action is recognized as illegal, the relevant authorities will take the necessary administrative measures,” Zakharova also said.Lesson learnt Trump assembles a made-for-TV impeachment defense team Others said they came to watch World Cup matches but got stranded when their return plane tickets, booked by bogus travel agencies, were cancelled.Ismail Olamilekan, 21, and his brother Sodiq, 25, said they paid 250,000 naira or $700 each to a man in Lagos for their Fan IDs.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkSPORTSTim Cone still willing to coach Gilas but admits decision won’t be ‘simple yes or no’“The man told us that with the Fan ID we could get a job and stay here,” Ismail told AFP at a hostel on the outskirts of Moscow.“But when we got here we discovered that it was a fraud, that he had just collected the money and lied to us,” he added. Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award ‘Football career’The plastic-coated passes issued by the Russian government enable foreign fans to enter the country without a visa during the World Cup – but they expire before the end of July.They are issued free to fans who have bought tickets for World Cup matches. But some agents sold them to Nigerians who wanted to come to Russia to work.It was not clear how the bogus agents obtained the Fan IDs that they sold.A FIFA spokesman stressed that the Fan IDs system was implemented by the Russian communications ministry.ADVERTISEMENT ‘High crimes and misdemeanors’: Trump impeachment trial begins Serena ready for royal date with Meghan at Wimbledon FIFA “continues to make efforts to identify and curb unauthorized ticket sales”, th spokesman said.The Olamilekan brothers spent about a thousand dollars each for their plane fare to Moscow, on top of what they paid separately to the agent.“In Nigeria I play football. He told me that if I started working I can also start a (football) career in Russia,” Ismail Olamilekan said.Nigerians ‘stranded’A fellow Muslim was allowing the brothers to sleep in his hostel until their return flight on July 22.Other Nigerians, however, found themselves stranded in Russia after fraudulent “agents” who booked return flights for them then cancelled the bookings to get a refund.A group of about a dozen Nigerians waiting at Moscow’s Vnukovo airport on Tuesday told AFP they had been sleeping there for days.Some of them said they each paid more than a million naira or at least $2,700 to an agent for a package including flights, match tickets and a fan ID.“We’ve been sleeping on the floor like fools. We’ve got no place to go,” said Alonge Ademola, 35, a cement dealer from Lagos.“We really do want to go back to our country. We’ve cried, we’ve wept, but still no solution,” he added. MOST READ The Olamilekan brothers, meanwhile, are waiting to board their flight home. They bought their return tickets with money their parents borrowed.“We don’t have any option but to go back home and work and pay our parents’ debts,” Ismail said.“I spoke to them last night. They asked if we’ve got a job and if we’re living well and I decided to tell them (the truth). I don’t like lying to my parents.”“I still give thanks to God because He has taught me a lesson,” he added. /kgaSports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding Report: Disney dropping the ‘Fox’ from movie studio names Palace OKs total deployment ban on Kuwait OFWs View comments LATEST STORIES A 25-year-old Nigerian Sodiq Olamilekan (L) stands next to his 21-year-old brother Ismail at a door of a hostel in Moscow on July 12, 2018. Fraudsters have tricked scores of Nigerians by selling them football World Cup fan passes to travel to Russia, leaving many stranded and penniless, victims and anti-trafficking campaigners say. AFP PHOTO / Roland LLOYD PARRYMoscow, Russia – Fraudsters have tricked scores of Nigerians by selling them football World Cup fan passes to travel to Russia, leaving many stranded and penniless, victims and anti-trafficking campaigners said.Some Nigerians told AFP they used the official Fan IDs to come to Russia with the promise of finding work or even playing professional football.ADVERTISEMENTlast_img read more

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Staley guides US to another gold using calm demeanor

first_imgUnited States coach Dawn Staley gives instructions to her players during the Women’s basketball World Cup final match between Australia and the U.S.A. in Tenerife, Spain, Sunday Sept. 30, 2018. (AP Photo/Andres Gutierrez)SAN CRISTOBAL DE LA LAGUNA, Spain — Dawn Staley knows the pressure that comes with coaching USA Basketball. It’s gold medal or bust.She experienced it first as a player with the U.S., then as an assistant and now as the team’s head coach. She’s been successful in each position, helping the Americans win gold.ADVERTISEMENT Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award LATEST STORIES Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Clinical Nishikori off to flier at Japan Open MOST READ Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title Gov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal “No matter how many times you’ve been a part of it, the pressure is still there,” she said. “When you look in the players’ eyes. I knew Diana when we hit the semifinals, she took on a whole different look. When your best players gave that look you get out of the way. As the game progresses the pressure releases itself.”Staley inherited a team that had won two straight World titles and 16 consecutive games in the tournament. The U.S. had gone 94-1 since the 1996 Olympics in major international competitions. She had been part of many of those wins as a player. Now’s she kept the unbelievable run going as a coach.“The expectation is whenever It’s your first time, it’s way different from being a player to coaching,” said Geno Auriemma, who coached the U.S. to the previous two world titles. “Winning that first gold medal, I don’t care who you are, it’s hard. There’s no escaping that. She’s done a great job of staying with the system and staying level-headed.”Next up for Staley and the U.S. will be the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. While the pressure will be the same, winning another gold will be a bit easier in a way, as the final three rounds aren’t played on three straight days like they are at the World Cup.“It’s always the hardest one to win,” Taurasi said. “Physically tough, mentally tough. Playing three games in three nights you don’t do that anymore in the pros. It’s the only tournament that challenges you in that way.”ADVERTISEMENT Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Taurasi credited the way Staley played when they both were on the U.S. team in the early 2000s for helping set a tone that she’s continued with Bird on the present team.“She did it in such a way that Sue and I said that’s how you become a pro and win a gold medal,” Taurasi said. “That comes from Dawn and what she put into this team a long time ago.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil “Dawn’s demeanor is so calm and confident I think that helped us,” said four-time World Cup gold medalist Sue Bird after the U.S. beat Australia to win a third straight World Cup title. “I think that helped us. … Dawn, the entire time, was saying you know what, we’re worried about guarding them, but they had to worry about guarding us, too. It put it into a nice perspective and allowed us to be calm and that’s what we needed.”Staley helped guide the U.S. to an unprecedented third straight World Cup gold medal on Sunday night with the 73-56 win.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back Chriss“It’s USA Basketball, if you’re part of it more times than not you’re going to win especially with players like Sue, Diana (Taurasi) and Stewie coming back,” Staley said.Even with the collection of stars assembled on the U.S. roster, Staley knows it’s not as simple as showing up. The World Cup is a grueling tournament with six games in nine days. The Americans will always get everyone else’s best shot. Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California collegelast_img read more

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49ers apologize for leaving Kaepernick photos out of gallery

first_imgMOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. The 49ers supported Kaepernick in 2016 when he decided to kneel during the national anthem to protest social and racial injustice and matched his $1 million contribution toward programs for social equality.Kaepernick opted out of his contract the following offseason when the 49ers told him they planned to cut him. Kaepernick has been unable to find another team to play for the past two seasons.Coach Kyle Shanahan was asked about bringing Kaepernick back after starting quarterback Jimmy Garoppolo went down with a season-ending knee injury and said he still didn’t fit the team’s offense.“I made that decision just with the style of offense that we wanted to go with,” Shanahan said on Sept. 24. “That’s kind of what I said last year and it’s kind of the same situation now. If you’re thinking of if there’d be a different discussion now, I always look into what style of offense I want to do, what style of offense we’ve been doing for the last two years.”ADVERTISEMENT Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Butler misses Wolves shootaround amid trade-demand drama Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award LATEST STORIES Phivolcs: Slim probability of Taal Volcano caldera eruption Gov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum View comments Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next The team later added photos of Kaepernick. This is the first photo gallery the team has run this year but pictures of Kaepernick were included in all seven photo galleries posted on the team’s website last year.“Unfortunately there were a handful of obvious misses in this gallery posted by our website team and we appreciate them being brought to our attention,” the team said in a statement. “The 49ers organization has tremendous respect and gratitude for the contributions Colin made to our team over the years.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissKaepernick set an NFL record for quarterbacks by rushing for 181 yards in a playoff win against Green Bay on Jan. 12, 2013, threw for 413 yards in a season-opening win against the Packers in 2013, and led a winning drive to win a playoff game in Green Bay on Jan. 5, 2014.“We have fond memories of those games and that should have been displayed on our website,” the team said. “This oversight does not properly reflect the appreciation our ownership and this team have for Colin.” Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick, right, hugs comedian Dave Chappelle, left, on stage during W.E.B. Du Bois Medal award ceremonies, Thursday, Oct. 11, 2018, at Harvard University, in Cambridge, Mass. Kaepernick and Chappelle are among eight recipients of Harvard University’s W.E.B. Du Bois Medals in 2018. Harvard has awarded the medal since 2000 to people whose work has contributed to African and African-American culture. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)SANTA CLARA, Calif. — The San Francisco 49ers are apologizing for initially leaving Colin Kaepernick out of a photo gallery celebrating the team’s history against the Green Bay Packers.The team posted dozens of photos on its website of past games against the Packers before the teams meet again Monday night without at first including any of Kaepernick.ADVERTISEMENT Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anewlast_img read more

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Letran out to give favored Lyceum a good fight in NCAA Final 4 match

first_imgWill you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Gov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal Right direction: ‘Non-losing season’ already an achievement for St. Benilde Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. In that game, the Knights took 76-65 lead with six minutes left before faltering when it mattered most.Napa likes his team’s chances but he remains cautious, knowing how good of a team Lyceum is.“We still need to go through the eye of the needle. We need to beat them twice so we have to be ready,” he said. “We have to have a good approach and we have to go all out for us to give them a good fight and still play on Monday.”ADVERTISEMENT Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title MOST READ LATEST STORIES Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown Head coach Jeff Napa sees an intriguing matchup between his team Letran and Lyceum in the NCAA Season 94 Final Four.ADVERTISEMENT Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazilcenter_img Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew View comments And Napa has every reason to look forward to the duel after the Knights split their season series with the second-seeded Pirates.“Very exciting matchup against Lyceum. We’re not gonna think about what Lyceum is going to do against us, we will just take care of ourselves,” Napa said on Tuesday after Letran lost to College of St. Benilde, 94-81, to end the elimination round.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissThe Knights beat the Pirates, 80-79, in a bizarre finish in their second round encounter earlier this month after Jaycee Marcelino’s 3-pointer with 40.8 seconds remaining was downgraded to just two points after the final buzzer.Letran fell to Lyceum in the first round, 87-82, two months ago but it was also a game where the Knights could’ve won. For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity.last_img read more

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Finals experience helps Meralco overcome Phoenix

first_imgLights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Meralco and Phoenix had vastly different identities during their quarterfinals series in the PBA Governors’ Cup Friday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Allen Durham still determined to help Meralco win 1st PBA title Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Kevin Belingon ends Fernandes’ reign, becomes undisputed ONE bantamweight king “We knew we had to win two games so we wanted to set the tone right from the get-go.”The Bolts are considered powers in the PBA’s third conference with two straight finals appearances to attest to that.Meralco fought by the skin of its teeth to get to the playoffs after falling to a 1-6 record in the preliminaries.“We understood that they’re [the Fuel Masters] going to make adjustments and I felt like that’s where our finals experience came in making those adjustments because is a series that’s what happens,” said Newsome who had 19 points, six rebounds, and four assists.ADVERTISEMENT The Fuel Masters came into the series as the no.2 team an 8-3 record and brought along a twice-to-beat advantage while the Bolts entered the playoffs after slugging through the eliminations and winning four straight do-or-die games.Meralco, riding on that incredible winning streak,  stunned Phoenix and overcame a twice-to-beat disadvantage to continue its hot streak on the way to the semifinals against a tough Alaska team.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissBolts wingman Chris Newsome said it just may have been his team’s championship experience that got them over a determined team like Phoenix.“I definitely felt like that [championship experience] played a key especially in Game 1,” said Newsome after their 108-103 overtime win in Game 2. “I felt like we understood what we needed to do to set the tone.” Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plumcenter_img Tim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crown View comments Gov’t to employ 6,000 displaced by Taal Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college MOST READ Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity.last_img read more

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Skid-busting win over FEU shows Lady Maroons’ ‘step by step’ improvement

first_imgTom Brady most dominant player in AFC championship history Work in progress: Lady Eagles still working on maturity, consistency “It’s a good thing that we’re able to achieve this first win after so many years.”For a bit of perspective, the Lady Maroons still had Kathy Bersola, Nicole Tiamzon, Pia Gaiser, and Angeli Araneta the last time they owned FEU.Bersola led the Lady Maroons in that victory with 20 points and Tiamzon, who was known as one of the better spikers in her last years with UP, dished out 32 excellent sets as the Lady Maroons’ setter.FEU had a rookie Bernadeth Pons score 22 points for the Lady Tamaraws who still had Marie Toni Basas, the older sister of Toni Rose, Gizelle Sy, and Geneveve Casugod.“This is something we’ll take home and celebrate over,” said Okumu. “I hope when we meet them again the results would be the same.”ADVERTISEMENT Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup title UP hadn’t beaten Far Eastern U in their last eight meetings but that changed Wednesday in the UAAP Season 81 women’s volleyball tournament.The Lady Maroons were able to secure their first victory against the Lady Tamaraws in five years, 25-18, 20-25, 25-22, 25-20, in another milestone moment.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets‍‍‍ offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsUP head coach Godfrey Okumu said the Lady Maroons’ latest victory is a sign that the team is headed in the right direction.“Everything comes with change, our team is changing,” said Okumu. “It’s now how we used to play before, every day we keep on changing and we’re trying to improve step by step.” LATEST STORIES Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’ Philippine Army to acquire MANPADS, self-propelled howitzers MANILA, Philippines—University of the Philippines has slowly started to rise to prominence in the women’s volleyball landscape for the past three years, but there are still teams that the Lady Maroons have yet to beat well until now.ADVERTISEMENT Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup title MOST READ Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Japeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for Ginebra View comments Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college SEA GAMES 2019: PH’s Nesthy Petecio boxing featherweight final (HIGHLIGHTS) PLAY LIST 02:11SEA GAMES 2019: PH’s Nesthy Petecio boxing featherweight final (HIGHLIGHTS)00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player awardlast_img read more

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Honest Management, not Money, Is the Answer: Dr. Tipoteh

first_imgIn the midst of the public debate on the proposal for the government to give L$85 million to each district to improve living conditions of the poor, Dr. Togba-Nah Tipoteh, has declared that honest management rather than more money is what is really needed to improve the living conditions of poor people in the districts. Dr. Tipoteh said that his declaration makes common sense that even the women of West Point, under the banner of Seven Sisters, know this when they say that the money problem is not Liberia’s problem but how to manage the money in the interest of the poor people is the problem.Dr. Tipoteh went on to say that in order to understand well the point he is making, people need to examine the record of the management of government money that has already been distributed to the districts. During the first term of President Sirleaf, she appointed the County Development Fund Committee, headed by Mr. Sam Jackson, to examine the record on the Fund. The Committee, according to Dr. Tipoteh, found out that over 90 per cent of the projects under the Fund were not implemented.Furthermore, Dr. Tipoteh, a veteran politician, said that studies by the Sustainable Development Institute (SDI) of Liberia show that nearly all of the projects that the district people wanted were dropped and the projects desired by the top government officials  were the projects that were placed in the government budget.Dr. Tipoteh is using this debate to remind the Liberian people that the President declared corruption to be public enemy number one because the record shows that corruption in government, especially among top government officials, is public enemy number open.Dr. Tipoteh insists that common sense and love of Liberia demand that more money should be given in the name of poor people only when there is a record of proper use of the present amount of money. Dr. Tipoteh continued by saying that unless the present management is hanged through peaceful electoral action by the people to get honest people in top government positions, any more money placed in the government budget in the name of poor people will be chopped again by the greedy and corrupt government officials.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Suggestions to save sugar (Part 1)

first_imgDear Editor,On the evening of January 6, 2018, at the reception to observe India’s Republic Day, the Indian High Commissioner and Guyana’s President spoke at the event. Both of them alluded to India’s readiness to assist Guyana to develop the sugar industry.That has put to rest some Government spokesperson’s claim that they knew nothing of this, which I had mentioned on several occasions before. Now, all have admitted that the offer is there for the taking.Therefore, there is no sound reason to continue the programme to close estates. Indeed, the argument can be made not just to halt that programme, but also to reopen Wales Estate. The reopening of the Wales Estate should be done now before its infrastructure is destroyed.The task of GuySuCo’s management and the Government is to clearly identify the help that is needed and to make concrete proposals to the Indian Government and allow the industry to emerge from its present difficulties and become prosperous again.In this regard, I wish to make some proposals, not exhaustive, but some which I think can help change the fortunes of the industry.In the first place, it is clear that we need to immune the industry from the crisis which has come from outside, that is mainly low prices on the international market.To do so, we have to move towards producing new products. The PPP/C Administration had begun that process. It needs to be continued. New revenue streams must be pursued.One of the important products that can be produced by GuySuCo is ethanol. This offers great possibilities. Ethanol can take the place of 10 per cent of the gasoline that is imported for vehicles immediately. That would be a big revenue enhancement to GuySuCo.The fact that GuySuCo is still State-owned and we have in our hands Guyoil, another State-owned company, helps to facilitate this easily. The two companies can partner to blend ethanol with gasoline and sell at the pumps. Both companies stand to gain greatly. Our country can save valuable foreign exchange in reducing our gasoline imports for vehicles and equipment by 10 per cent.This is another cost-cutting measure for GuySuCo, whose fuel bill is significant. It can use fuel that it produces.Moreover, it is a product that can be exported to many countries. That can earn us quite a bit of foreign exchange and enhance GuySuCo’s fortunes greatly. GuySuCo was already pursuing a value-added policy.We have established packaging plants at Blairmont and Enmore. That can allow us to get higher prices for our sugar and we can become independent of the world market prices. This process has gone a far way.We have also seen the concern of Demerara Distillers Limited (DDL) in relation to getting molasses for its own distillery. It is also a fact that Banks DIH Limited spends millions to import raw alcohol to produce its brand of rum.It is clear that both or one of these companies can partner with GuySuCo to produce raw alcohol right here. It would save our country the foreign exchange that Banks DIH Ltd now expends to import this product. It could earn money by supplying alcohol to our hospitals and export to the Caribbean. Banks DIH Ltd and DDL are already branded product, therefore, our returns here would be great. We could get premium prices.Sincerely,Donald RamotarFormer Presidentlast_img read more

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When frustration begins to sink in

first_imgDear Editor,The present Coalition Government is in the news again where unethical and vulgar repetitions were used by one of its members. In this instance, lewd and vulgar outbursts were again uttered by a minister of Government. It seems that this coalition Government has come to notoriety with these public displays of vulgarity, and the occurrences are all too often and familiar when frustration has reached saturation point.The minister in question was being asked a simple question, to which he showed gross contempt and disrespect for the media worker, so when he was further prodded for a sensible answer, he arrogantly responded with the now infamous “haul your ass” response. This is low, undignified, street corner behaviour for a minister of Government. If he had nothing noteworthy to say, he could have simply ignored the question; but responding in the way he did truly reveals the mettle of the man.In retrospect, Ramjattan apologised for his action, but he has to accept the fact that the evil deed has been done, and there is no mitigation for his actions. The point is: this minister is frustrated because his ministry is in a quandary as to what is the best strategy that can be utilized to combat the multitude of issues, such as suicide, rape, joblessness, armed robberies and murder that have so engulfed his ministry. So the poor guy is in dire straits. These and the ever superabundance of scandals that have rocked his ministry weighs heavily on him, so, he did the thing, which is so characteristic of this administration; and that is, to lash out in contemptuous fury, “Haul your ass!”But lest we be too judgmental and hard on Ramjattan, we just have to step backwards a few months ago, when the present attorney general was caught in a similar situation. At that instance, he was cross-examining a witness on the stand, and in similar fashion, when he could not get his way, he also lashed out in threatening disgust at the judge. Not being able to elicit the desired response from a witness brought out the baseness in his thinking. What is of grave significance here is the fact that not only did he make a threat on the judge, but he vehemently refused to apologize. Interesting!Finally, one of the hallmarks of this administration is its members’ penchant for expletives and violent outbursts whenever they are cornered. They do so at will, however and whenever they see fit, no matter how stupid and dangerous it may be. There are no boundaries for their lawlessness, there is just that total disregard for law and order, or civilized behaviour.Guyana can be considered a forward thinking, educated and talented society, and as such, I do not see why we should be burdened with such decadence.Respectfully,Neil Adamslast_img read more

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Flawed and unconvincing

first_imgDear Editor,The letter by Timothy Jonas which is captioned “ANUG supports the call for legalisation of marijuana in Guyana,” is highly flawed and unconvincing. Such a call by ANUG (A New and United Guyana) also comes across as an unpatriotic manipulation to attract votes.Flagrantly, ANUG fails to address the scientific influence of this substance on human behavior in the context of a profound lack of education and deep poverty, among a sea of problems in Guyana. In my view, this calculation is a pivotal frame of reference which is critically important to determine whether marijuana is suitable for legalisation at this time in Guyana. Obviously, ANUG remains clueless about the problems associated with marijuana use and misuse, particularly for a country such as Guyana.ANUG needs to be reminded that the social, political and economic dynamics in Guyana are strikingly different from those in Canada and California where marijuana is legalised. The legalisation of this substance in those countries should never be a justification for its legalisation here. Further, ANUG needs to be informed that the recreational use of marijuana remains largely illegal in both the Netherlands and Jamaica.ANUG also needs to be reminded that the legalisation of marijuana will never reduce the prison population in the face of deep poverty in Guyana. Legalisation is guaranteed to produce the opposite effect. At the very least, it can be reasoned that legalisation under current conditions will dramatically send more Guyanese into prison via armed robberies, pickpockets, burglaries and a variety of illegal means simply because unemployed users will need to come up with scarce dollars necessary to purchase such an expensive drug. I just do not see how marijuana can be affordable under conditions of poverty and where unemployment is sky-high. Legalisation under current conditions just does not make any sense. It is simply an insane proposal. At this time, Guyana can’t afford to legalise the recreational use of marijuana.If ANUG seriously cares about the welfare of marijuana users, then it must guide Guyanese to do the right thing by respecting our laws. Discipline is needed. The breaking of our laws directly expands the prison population and none of this is ever acceptable. To this end, Guyana must never rush to legalise marijuana in the absence of the required foundation just to reward those that are hell-bent on breaking our laws, or to reward those who want to profit financially from this drug at the expense of human lives or to reward those that issue hollow calls for votes.Sincerely,Annie Baliramlast_img read more

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