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Guyana to host Int’l Congress on Biodiversity in August

first_imgGuyana is set to host the largest gathering of experts on biodiversity of the Guiana Shield at the fourth International Congress on Biodiversity of the Guiana Shield from August 8 to 12, the local United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) office has announced.The Congress, which was officially launched on Friday, will be held under the theme: “Leveraging our high endemicity, cultural diversity and intact ecosystems for inclusive growth and secure futures.”Organisers at the launch of the IV International Congress on Biodiversity of the Guiana ShieldThe week-long event will be held at the Arthur Chung Conference Centre, Liliendaal, and it is anticipated that more than one hundred papers will be presented along with poster displays, discussion and capacity building sessions.Leading scientists, practitioners, policymakers and students in a variety of fields will be among the hundreds from around the globe expected to be in attendance. These include biomimicry expert, Dr Dayna Baumeister; forest policy professor, Dr Robert J Lilieholm and Dr Russell A Mittermeier, world renowned primatologist and conservation expert.The Congress discourse will cover the state of biodiversity and ecological functions of the Guiana Shield, biodiversity and communities: contribution and role of local and indigenous communities, biodiversity and climate, mainstreaming biodiversity in sustainable development, and gender and vulnerable groups.The Guiana Shield is one of Earth’s oldest geological formations, and is the single largest block of tropical forest remaining on the planet. The region is one of the most biologically rich and diverse in the world; with its pristine forests, largely uncontaminated aquatic ecosystems, and other intact ecosystems. It is also home to many rare and unique species. A variety of indigenous and other communities depend, some almost exclusively, on its environment for their livelihood.Over the past two decades, however, countries of the Shield have sought to intensify exploitation of their natural resources as a means of alleviating poverty and promoting socio-economic development. This has resulted in emergence of a multiplicity of challenges, including land use conflicts and biodiversity loss.The International Congress on Biodiversity of the Guiana Shield was last held in Paramaribo, Suriname in August 2013. Macapa City, in the Brazilian state of Amapa, hosted the second congress in 2010, and Venezuela was the host of the inaugural congress in 2006.The Guyana Society for Biodiversity and Ecosystems (GSBE) is coordinating the Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the Congress. The LOC includes the Natural Resources Ministry, UNDP, Iwokrama International Centre, University of Guyana, and the local offices of Conservation International and World Wildlife Fund Guianas.Sponsorship of the Congress is being sought. Significant contributions have already been received from the Government of Guyana, through the Ministries of the Presidency and Natural Resources. Pledges and contributions have also been received from WWF-Guianas, UNDP, Caricom and Camex Restaurant Inc.GSBE is a local chapter of the International Biodiversity Society of the Guiana Shield (IBG) – established with a view to addressing a multiplicity of socioeconomic, political, cultural and environmental issues confronting the Guiana Shield region.Registered as a friendly-benefit Society, the GSBE is a non-governmental, charitable and non-profit making body. It promotes conservation, research and wise management of biological diversity and ecosystems in Guyana and the wider Guiana Shield through its affiliations with partner associations in the region and beyond.last_img read more

Tom Woewiyu Denied Bail

first_imgJucontee Thomas Woewiyu has been denied bail by a US court. Mr. Woewiyu, a former spokesman for the National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) is facing a potentially lengthy prison term in the United States for alleged immigration fraud.He was planning to run for Senate in the upcoming special senatorial election.And despite living for the last four decades as a legal permanent resident in Delaware County, he and his wife maintain extensive real estate holdings, including a rubber farm in Liberia.”He is very, very much involved in public life in Liberia,” said prosecutor Linwood C. Wright. “He has an infrastructure there [Liberia] that is more substantial than what he has here [US].”On Friday, a U.S. magistrate judge agreed and ordered Woewiyu, 69, held without bond while he awaits trial on allegations he lied to immigration officers about his past with Taylor,  who is serving a 50-year term in a British prison.But in arguing for his release, Woewiyu’s lawyer, Benjamin G. Perez, suggested that what government attorneys misunderstood was that having a life on both sides of the Atlantic is the norm for much of Southeastern Pennsylvania’s 15,000-member Liberian expatriate community.In the African hair salons and grocery stores that have sprung up along thoroughfares such as Woodland Avenue, shoppers tell tales of family living here and there. Rivalries cross oceans, and men in T-shirts and jeans are equally likely to introduce themselves as café owners or dignitaries from nations thousands of miles away.Such was the manner in which Liberian expat Jeffrey Harmon introduced himself Friday in the hallway of the federal courthouse.”This is all political,” he said of Woewiyu’s arrest. “This all has to do with politics back at home.”His concerns mirrored conspiracy theories snaking their way through the Liberian immigrant community in the days since Woewiyu’s arrest. Homeland Security detained him Monday at Newark Liberty International Airport as he returned from a campaign trip to Monrovia, Liberia’s capital.The charges against him stem from a 2006 application for U.S. citizenship. Asked on the form whether he had ever advocated for the toppling of a foreign government or persecuted minority groups, Woewiyu said no.Prosecutors, however, call him a war criminal – linking him to the worst atrocities of Taylor’s regime.Throughout back-to-back civil wars that wracked Liberia from 1989 to 2003, Woewiyu served as the U.S.-based spokesman and defense minister to Taylor’s National Patriotic Front of Liberia.The party had mounted a violent campaign to wrest control from Taylor’s predecessor, Samuel Doe, in 1996, but then turned its weapons on countrymen in an effort to hold on to power – executing political opponents, conscripting boys into child armies, and forcing girls into prostitution. Taylor was convicted of those crimes by an international court in 2012. Woewiyu – who served as labor minister in Taylor’s government and president pro tempore of the Senate before breaking politically with Taylor – remained here.For years, he has resided with his wife in a two-story home in Collingdale. They have enjoyed a prominent role in Delaware County’s immigrant community.He earned a bachelor’s degree in labor studies from Rutgers University in 1981. He is pursuing a master’s from Pennsylvania State University while earning a living through real estate development.Six of his grown children also live in the United States. One is a lieutenant in the Navy.”I am very surprised,” said the Rev. Moses Dennis of Faith Immanuel Lutheran Church in East Lansdowne, which caters to a large Liberian congregation. Woewiyu occasionally attended services at there.”He comes across very genuine,” Dennis said. “He’s a politician. A politician, you know.”Others preferred to keep their opinions to themselves, fearful that anything said here could mean trouble for family abroad. For, as U.S. prosecutors said Friday, Woewiyu maintains a high profile in his homeland.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

ORANGE Unveils Youth-focused Promotion, 50 Cent Scratch Cards

first_img– Advertisement – Orange Liberia has officially unveiled its newest offer to the Liberian public. The new offer called “MyClique” was unveiled at a press conference held at the company’s headquarters on Capitol Bye- Pass in Monrovia.The MyClique package allows customers to activate 24 hours of unlimited calls & SMS within Orange network, as well as Free Facebook and WhatsApp for only 50 cents.Announcing the new offer, Orange’s Communications Strategist Dr. Kimmie Weeks stated that Orange had decided that its first offer would be youth focused and youth oriented.“I am proud to be a part of a company that has decided that its first major offer after entering the Liberian telecommunications market would be youth driven.  This is unprecedented and has never been done before,” he said.Weeks observed that after its nationwide survey, it became apparent to Orange that there were still many young people who wanted to be in touch with their friends and close relatives but who still could not afford the $1 for 3 days.  “We know the 3 days is already very affordable, but we know there are still some young people who cannot get that $1, this is why we have come up with the MyClique offer to provide them another way to easily stay in touch with their friends and loved ones,” Weeks said.Weeks also said Orange was introducing new 50 cents scratch cards into the Liberian market but encouraged customers to also utilize the e-recharge program as they would also be able to get a 500% bonus on each transaction.In addition, Weeks noted that Orange Liberia had released a wide range of devices to fit the budget of all Liberians and pointed out that Orange Liberia’s mobile devices are starting from as low as $9 and includes Samsung, Techno, Itel, Tablets, Carfi, Modem, Hotspot and a wide range of Orange brand devices.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Mr. Weeks says Orange is targeting young people who cannot afford the $1 for three days, to be able to reach their families and friendslast_img read more

Lone survivor’s condition stabilises

first_imgLa Grange smash-upTwenty-two-year-old David Bourne, who was the fourth victim in Sunday’s smash-up at La Grange, West Bank Demerara (WBD), is now listed in stable condition.The Police on Monday said that Bourne was transferred to the Georgetown Public Hospital, as doctors battled to save his life.The early-morning accident on Sunday resulted in a mother losing her only son and two young girls becoming fatherless. Bourne’s friends who perished were 33-year-old Leroy Levans Junior, of Nismes, WBD, who was the driver and passengers Devindra Hardyal, 25, called “Slice” and Reshi Pasha, 20, both of LaLone survivor David BourneGrange. Levans and Hardyal were killed almost instantly while Pasha took his last breath around 07:00h on Sunday.  According to reports, the men left a party at Stanleytown, WBD and were heading to drop off Bourne at his Goed Fortuin, WBD home, but they never made it as Levans, the driver, crashed into a parked lorry. His father, Pastor Leroy Levans Sr, had said that though his faith was being tested, he would remain strong. The dead man’s daughter is nine years old.Hardyal’s sister, Marsha, meanwhile told Guyana Times that she would often tell her brother to remain at home, but on the fateful night, his friend collected him to go to the party. She said that the four who perished would always hang out on the road together.Hardyal’s daughter is just three and he had planned to wed his child’s mother in December. Pasha, who was a welder, grew up with an aunt and uncle.The mangled car which crashed into a parked lorrylast_img read more

Unemployment, burdensome taxes mark APNU/AFC’s 2nd year in Govt

first_img…executive profligacy exposed – JagdeoBy: Devina SamarooAn anniversary is often a time to celebrate one’s positive achievements, but thus cannot be said of the APNU/AFC coalition Administration. This, at least, is according to Opposition Leader Bharrat Jagdeo, who has expressed confidence that the “entire country” agrees with his conviction.Those who are uncertain about this conviction are urged to ask themselves one simple question, according to the Opposition Leader: “People just have to look and ask whether their lives were better two years ago. Or has it changed for the worse?” he posited during a press conference hosted at the Office of the Leader of the Opposition at Church Street on Monday.In recognition of its second anniversary in Government this year, the APNU/AFC Administration has placed full page advertisements in three of the four local dailies, boasting about some of its achievements; which include: “lower electricity rates”, “less blackouts”, “press freedom restored”, “VAT reduced to 14%”, “land rental fees restructured”, “8060 laptops provided to teachers”, among other things.But the Opposition Leader has ridiculed the “achievements sheet”, contending that the Government has done nothing to foster the promised “good life for all”. He asserted that reality would illustrate that unemployment, heavy tax burdens, less disposable income, an unattractive investment climate and executive profligacy are the order of the day.“If I had to candidly characterise this Government, I’d say that is has been a masterpiece of incompetence. We have a cabinet that is constantly in a mess. Confusion and disarray characterise most of (its) actions,” he surmised.Flashback: President David Granger being sworn in as the 8th Executive President of the Co-operative Republic of Guyana on May 16, 2015False achievementsJagdeo believes the APNU/AFC list of accomplishments is riddled with false achievements. He highlighted that within two years of APNU/AFC rule, Guyanese have witnessed an unprecedented attack on the judiciary; divisive actions; discrimination on the basis of race and politics; a precipitous decline in almost every economic sector; “fat fowling” in the executive; and (perennial) profligacy and greed.The former President pointed to the exorbitant salary increases the ministers have awarded themselves just a few months after arriving in executive office; their increased travel allowances; unnecessary spending on furniture and vehicles; and the use of private jets for luxurious travels in noting that while Government ministers are enjoying the good life, ordinary people have been losing their jobs and struggling to make ends meet.He also pointed to the laying off of Barama workers, persons in retail employment, Amerindians who were directly employed with the Government, and to the plight of workers in the sugar belt in advising that Guyanese should brace themselves for more hardships, as another 10,000 persons are expected to hit the breadline once the full impact of the new tax regime takes force and Government perseveres with the reforms it envisages for the sugar industry.“They tabled a white paper on the sugar industry, and how is this an achievement? That they tabled a white paper which will result in close to 10,000 people losing their job?” he questioned.TaxesJagdeo said anyone who boasts of increasing the tax burden on the nation as an achievement needs to be sent to the “mad house”.Government has removed the long list of VAT zero-rated items to the VAT-exempt category, which means that employers will have to pay the input VAT but cannot claim refunds. This increased tax burden will naturally be passed on to consumers, Jagdeo explained.Regarding the restoration of press freedom, Jagdeo argued that such a claim is erroneous, as Guyana dropped three places on the Global Press Freedom Index. He also referred to the Executive’s seeming support for ministerial interference in the State media, as has been highlighted by the Guyana Press Association (GPA) on a number of occasions.Government has listed establishment of the Lands Commission of Inquiry (CoI) as an achievement, but Jagdeo said this cannot be the case when the entire Amerindian community is against such a move.He, moreover, noted that the achievement regarding laptop distribution to teachers cannot be credited to this administration, as it was the Peoples Progressive Party Government that acquired the devices.According to the Opposition Leader, the Government’s list of achievement screams desperation. And further alluding to the legacy of the coalition government, Jagdeo cited the collapse of the $97M monument at Palmyra, East Coast Berbice; the fully funded multi-million-dollar scholarships handed to Government ministers; increases in land rentals; the pardoning of prisoners; new taxes on mining, education, medical services, domestic flights; and the ban on used tyres, among other things, Jagdeo surmised that, within two years of being in office, the APNU/AFC had “failed miserably to meet the expectations of the people of Guyana; failed to keep its promises; and is clueless about where we are going in terms of development.”Jagdeo says he is lamenting the additional damage which would be visited on the country under another three years of APNU/AFC rule.last_img read more

DONEGAL HISTORIC SOCIETY TO UNDERTAKE TWO FIELD TRIPS

first_imgThe Donegal Historical Society is to undertake two field days across the county in August.The first one is on August 16th in Finner Camp with Col.Declan O’Carroll being the guide.On August 30th, during Heritage Week, the group will be in the Manorcunningham area. The guide there will be Leonard Roarty and members of Raymochy Parishes Historical Society.More details nearer the time.DONEGAL HISTORIC SOCIETY TO UNDERTAKE TWO FIELD TRIPS was last modified: July 22nd, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:DONEGAL HISTORICAL SOCIETYFIELD TRIPSlast_img read more

The Very Strange Story of the Startup That Says It Made $10m Before Launching

first_imgWhy Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Tags:#NYT#Product Reviews#Real-Time Web#search#web marshall kirkpatrick Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hostingcenter_img Ben Behrouzi came from the shadowy Lead Generation business, but some people in that field said he played too dirty. Now he’s got a real-time search engine that just came out of beta today, called Leapfish, and he says the company will already report $10 million in revenue this year despite having barely launched to the public. This is a strange story, but no one said the path to the future wouldn’t itself be strange. So consider suspending your disbelief so you can see what Leapfish has to offer.Leapfish was at first a site for calculating the estimated value of domain names, then it became a patched-together meta-search engine that prioritized timeliness. Now it’s a gorgeous, smartly planned real-time search service with an introductory video that can only be described as epic. (See below.) The company has convinced businesses to pay hundreds, thousands or tens of thousands of dollars for year-long exclusive keyword advertising and the first right to renew each year. It’s like an investment in the future viability of Leapfish, the company says. Leapfish at present only looks good, though, it doesn’t really work that well. Leapfish searches for user queries across 25 different services, from Google and Yahoo to Yelp, Digg and some Real Estate sites. The service determines which sources are providing the most relevant results and constructs a search results page accordingly. If users love Leapfish enough to marry it they can turn on as many as 35 different widgets to interact with things like their Facebook and Twitter accounts on the Leapfish home page.The design of the site and results pages are quite nice and the fundamental idea is a good one. But how could Leapfish already be set to bank $10 million in revenue this year? The Pleasanton, California company says it has 100 employees; 50 are listed on LinkedIn and almost every one of them are in sales.The sales pitch is this: Leapfish is small today, but the keyword prices that companies (like this lady) are paying will be a bargain if Leapfish can really grow. It’s an investment, and as such it’s a very affordable one. Some companies have already resold the keywords they bought from Leapfish for a profit, the company says.One part of what’s being invested in is, no doubt, a vision of the future. Check out this absolutely cathartic video the company made about the real-time web. It just might make you want to leap to your feet, pump your fist and shout “Go get ’em, Lead Generation Guy, go capture the future of the internet!”Unfortunately, in our tests Leapfish doesn’t work very well. Search results are often off-topic, there are software bugs in some of the most basic parts of the site on the day of its grand unveiling and the compelling vision isn’t that exciting in reality. Check out our 5 minute tour of the site to see what $10 million in ads have been bought against over the last year.If Leapfish can in fact pull it off, it wouldn’t be the first time a company has sputtered oddly into a final, grand-slam iteration. It wouldn’t be the first time a controversial entrepreneur with a business model that some people are skeptical of ended up capturing the world’s imagination, either. Leapfish is right, the web has changed dramatically, and someone’s going to figure out how to searching it effectively. The Leapfish story sure is a strange one, though. 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Related Posts last_img read more

Comment Of The Day: Saving Star Wars

first_imgTags:#Comment of the day#film jon mitchell Related Posts Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…center_img “Hey, if it takes $4 billion to keep Lucas away from any future Star Wars films, that is money well spent.”— rawryreeFrom the story: A New Hope? Disney Buys Lucasfilm For $4 Billion A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketlast_img

An Overview of Apple Motion’s New Features

first_imgImproved contrast filters and range selectors highlight Apple Motion’s latest update.Apple Motion has be somewhat stale for a while now. The last major update (5.0) was in 2011 and at times it has seemed like the motion graphics application might begin to be phased out by Apple (a fear recently realized by users of its popular Aperture photo editing software). But Motion users can rest easy for now, as Apple recently added a few new features.5.1.1 isn’t a major update, but does show Apple’s commitment to the product. The following walk-through created by Ripple Training shows us how to use the new features in Apple Motion. This tutorial primarily focuses on improvements made to the contrast filter, including:Contrast filter improvementsSmooth contrastLuminance only in contrast filterRange selector for character effectsIf you want to learn how to use the contrast filter on a technical level we highly suggest checking out the Apple page on Color Correction.This video was created first shared on Ripple Training’s YouTube channel. Thanks for sharing guys!If you want to learn more about motion graphic design or Apple Motion check out the Motion section of the PremiumBeat blog.last_img read more

Rajasthan daily boycotts CM over ordinance

first_imgA leading Hindi daily of Rajasthan on Wednesday decided to boycott Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje until she revokes a controversial ordinance which has extended protection to public servants against investigation for their acts done in discharge of official duties and given sweeping powers to authorities to “gag the media”.In a scathing front-page editorial, Rajasthan Patrika, headquartered in Jaipur, termed the ordinance, promulgated on September 6, a “black law” and announced that the newspaper would not publish any news on Ms. Raje and on the activities related to her until she repeals the law. “It is a question of democracy, freedom of speech and people’s voice,” Editor-in-Chief Gulab Kothari said.The Criminal Laws (Rajasthan Amendment) Ordinance, 2017, has provided immunity to the serving and retired public servants, judges and magistrates from probe and prosecution on the complaints about their alleged offences without prior sanction from the authorities. It also bars the media from reporting on such accusations till the sanction is given and lays down two years’ imprisonment for violation of law.While a Bill introduced in the State Assembly on October 23 for replacing the ordinance has been referred to a select committee of the House for reconsideration, the ordinance has been challenged in the Rajasthan High Court. The court’s Jodhpur and Jaipur Benches have issues notices to the Centre and the State government on as many as eight writ petitions.The signed editorial said the State government’s move to refer the Bill to the select committee was an “eyewash”, as the ordinance was still in force and the journalists were vulnerable to the government’s punitive action. “A journalist publishing a corrupt officer’s name today can be jailed for two years. Hasn’t the government pulled the wool over people’s eyes?” it said.“Glaring mistakes”Taking a tough stand on the issue, the newspaper said there were “glaring mistakes” in the way the Bill was tabled in the Assembly and referred to the select panel, while the “totalitarian rule” was trying to gain dominance over democracy. “[Assembly] elections are one year away. Till then, a lot of damage can be caused. Our board of directors has decided to boycott Ms. Raje until she withdraws this black law,” it said.last_img read more