Jamaica continued their unbeaten run in the CONCACAF Gold Cup when they battled to a 1-1 draw against El Salvador at the Alamodome in San Antonio, Texas, yesterday. The Reggae Boyz, who had already qualified to the quarter-final knockout stage, ended Group C on five points, following a 2-0 win against Curacao and a 0-0 draw against Mexico. El Salvador also booked a spot in the next stage as they ended on four points. Nelson Bonilla scored for El Salvador in the 15th minute, while Darren Mattocks netted a penalty for the Reggae Boyz in the 64th minute. Jamaica came close to scoring in the first minute when striker Romario Williams steered wide after a one-on-one chance with El Salvador custodian Derby Carillo. SEARCHING FOR A POINT The Central Americans came into the game in search of, at least, a point to make it to the knockout and took control of the first half for the most part. El Salvador scored when Bonilla squeezed a shot past Jamaica goalkeeper Andre Blake from an acute angle. That was the first goal scored against Jamaica in 196 minutes during this year’s Gold Cup. Williams had a good effort saved by Carillo in the 38th minute. His shot hit the keeper’s leg and was deflected from the goal. With the introduction of Owayne Gordon for Cory Burke at the start of the second half, the Jamaicans looked more purposeful. They were awarded a penalty when Narciso Orellana handled the ball inside the 18-yard box. Mattocks, who was scoring his fourth goal in five Gold Cup appearances, stepped up and easily converted the penalty kick. Coach of Jamaica men’s national senior team Theodore ‘Tappa’ Whitmore said that he was disappointed with how the team started the game. “I’m very disappointed as the team started out a bit slow against El Salvador. We created more opportunities than in previous games, and we welcome the point,” Whitmore said during a post-match press conference. When quizzed about whether he was concerned about his job as coach, Whitmore, who is a former Reggae Boyz captain, responded: “I am not under no pressure (as coach). We won once and drew twice in three games. We will leave that up to the Federation.” “I think it (the performance) was a mixture. Regardless of the result, we would go through, and that played on players’ minds. El Salvador needed a point to go to the next round and got it,” he reasoned. Mattocks, who is the Reggae Boyz top scorer in the Gold Cup, was happy that the team progressed to the knockout stage. “It’s a tournament. We just want to advance. We are pretty satisfied that we advanced,” Mattocks, who also netted in the first game against Curacao, said. “The second round will be tough. It’s a young team, so it will be difficult. It was good to score for the team,” he added.
‘GREATEST ACHIEVEMENT’ LONDON, England: When Yanique Thompson won gold in the 100 metres hurdles at the 2013 World Youth Championships in Donetsk in a stunning 12.94 seconds, it seemed certain she would be storming tracks and dominating at the senior level in no time. However, injuries and several other factors have contributed to what has been a rough and miserable transitional period for the one-time Holmwood Technical star sprint hurdler, who, a year later, lost both at Champs and at the World Junior Championships, before finishing eighth at the Pan Am Junior Championships. She had almost become the forgotten wonder, but four years after that run in Donetsk, Thompson is just a few days away from stepping back into the global spotlight at the World Championships in London, where she will make her debut at the senior international level. Her coach, Maurice Wilson, describes the comeback as his greatest coaching achievement, and revealed that it took a lot of recommitment on her part – and a reality check on his – to get the former teenage sensation back on track. “She is the greatest achievement for myself as a coach as well as the team around me. The transition was extremely difficult for her. She came to us with a lot of injuries and the psychology of not understanding what it meant to be a senior. It is easy when you can beat athletes at your age group, but when you are against world beaters, the transition, approach and discipline are totally different,” Wilson told The Gleaner before pointing to a frank discussion between himself and Thompson, which might have changed her career. “The turning point for her was when I informed her that if I was not able to assist her this season, I would personally seek out other coaches who could assist her. I am not afraid to ask Glen Mills or Stephen Francis or whoever. As a matter of fact, I would have asked Stephen Francis a year ago, but I did not actually get a response from him, or else she would have been over at MVP. Stephen is not the type of person who loves to intervene when it comes to coaches and athletes, but I think that made a difference,” said Wilson. Wilson is now hoping the 21-year-old will continue to apply herself and has no doubts she will achieve similar success as a senior if she does so. “I am hoping that she now has the understanding of what it takes to perform at this level, and I really believe that she is going to be one of the world beaters in the next two years if she continues in this mode,” said Wilson, who has been coaching her for more than seven years. Thompson lowered her personal best to 12.69 seconds to finish third at the National Senior Championships in June. email@example.com
TRANSITION TIME #TRANSITION TIME TRANSITION TIME TRANSITION TIME MISS LINDA WRAY MISS LINDA WRAY NATURALLY MYSTICAL MISS LINDA WRAY ICE ICE BABY ICE ICE BABY GOODBLOODBADBLOOD KING WITHIN DADDY’S DILEMMA DADDY’S DILEMMA #DADDY’S DILEMMA #DADDY’S DILEMMA DANOS LA PAZ DANOS LA PAZ DANOS LA PAZ #DANOS LA PAZ #STRIKE IT LUCKY STRIKE IT LUCKY STRIKE IT LUCKY DUSSELDORF #RUNDAZZLE RUNDAZZLE PRINCE MALIK RUNDAZZLE SILENCE VICE ROYALTY #VICE ROYALTY VICE ROYALTY IT’S A RAP PANDORA’S BOX ARIA PANDORA’S BOX DONTAE DONTAE SUPERLUMINAL DYSFUNCTIONAL PRINCESS CAULA #PRINCESS CAULA PRINCESS CAULA PRINCESS CAULA TRANSITION TIME TRANSITION TIME SON OF TAQARUB TRANSITION TIME WHITE BEAUTY MISS LINDA WRAY MISS LINDA WRAY LEGAL DANCER FOOT SOLDIER FOOT SOLDIER GOODBLOODBADBLOOD FOOT SOLDIER DADDY’S DILEMMA DADDY’S DILEMMA DADDY’S DILEMMA DADDY’S DILEMMA GENERAL REPORT #DANOS LA PAZ #DANOS LA PAZ GENERAL REPORT #BATIDOR DE MUNDO #DUSSELDORF DUSSELDORF STRIKE IT LUCKY RUNDAZZLE RUNDAZZLE #RUNDAZZLE #RUNDAZZLE VICE ROYALTY VICE ROYALTY VICE ROYALTY BLUE TRADITION PANDORA’S BOX PANDORA’S BOX PANDORA’S BOX PANDORA’S BOX #DONTAE DYSFUNCTIONAL DONTAE SUPERLUMINAL PHOTOGENIC PRINCESS CAULA PRINCESS CAULA #MR DOITBETTA SON OF TAQARUB TRANSITION TIME TRANSITION TIME ASTRO LEGAL DANCER MISS LINDA WRAY MISS LINDA WRAY LEGAL DANCER HOLY LIGHT FOOT SOLDIER GOODBLOODBADBLOOD FOOT SOLDIER DADDY’S DILEMMA DADDY’S DILEMMA #DADDY’S DILEMMA PURE HEART DANOS LA PAZ HEY CHAMP #DANOS LA PAZ DANOS LA PAZ CODED SECRET #STRIKE IT LUCKY DUSSELDORF STRIKE IT LUCKY #JUS NATURAL RUNDAZZLE RUNDAZZLE RUNDAZZLE #BLUE TRADITION VICE ROYALTY BLUE TRADITION VICE ROYALTY ARIA #PARAJET ARIA PARAJET SUPERLUMINAL DYSFUNCTIONAL DYSFUNCTIONAL #DONTAE BOFFO PRINCESS CAULA PRINCESS CAULA #BOFFO TRANSITION TIME TRANSITION TIME WHITE BEAUTY MISS LINDA WRAY FOOT SOLDIER GOODBLOODBAD… FULL TIME PURE HEART DANOS LA PAZ DANOS LA PAZ ALSO CORRECT STRIKE IT LUCKY RUNDAZZLE RUNDAZZLE DADA’S NALA #VICE ROYALTY #PARAJET ARIA #DONTAE #DONTAE PRINCESS CAULA PRINCESS CAULA
Track: Good Weather: Fine Race 1 1200 M (Purse $690,000) 3-Y-O & UP CLM($350,0-$300,0)/NB5YO&UP(NW3) *1. #1 HOLOGRAM SHADOW AntThomas2 53.0 $72.00 $51.00 2. #4 PRINCE SAMMO RHalledeen 55.0 2-3/4L $64.00 3. #5 BIG BLACK NATION RLahoe 53.0 1-3/4L $63.00 4. #3 SMASHING ONE NBerger3 51.0 5L Final Time : 1:15.1 Splits : 23.1, 47.2 Winner : 9yo dkb gelding – DISTORTED – UNREAL FANTASY Trainer : STEVEN TODD Owner : PATRICK HALL Bred by HAM STABLES LTD. Qu: $316.00 Ex: $292.00 Tri: $165.00 Superfecta: $1,735.00 Race 2 1300 M (Purse $600,000) 3-Y-O & UP CLM($180,0)/NB6YO&UP(NW3) *1. #3 LUANA OWalker 55.0 $110.00 148.00 2. #9 SONADOR EXPRESS NBerger3 49.0 5-1/2L $142.00 3. #10 PRINCESS STATISTIC DCardenas 52.0 3-1/4L $191.00 4. #5 BIGBROWNGREYHOPE PParchment 57.0 2-1/2L 5. #2 KING NEBARUE BebHarvey* 54.0 5-1/2L JF #8 QUEENOFSAINTROSE JInnis* 51.0 Note: Horse #2 KING NEBARUE passed the post 3rd but was disqualified and placed 5th. Horse #4 MR. COOKIE passed the post 2nd but was also disqualified and placed 6th. Final Time : 1:23.2 Splits : 23.3, 48.1, 1:15.2 Winner : 3yo b filly – CASUAL TRICK – DIAMONDNTHERUFF Trainer : WAYNE DACOSTA Owner : ARSCOTT FARMS Bred by MARK HUGH ARSCOTT CROSKERY Qu: $377.00 Ex: $375.00 D/E: $175.00 Tri: $404.00 Superfecta: $1,125.00 Hi-5: $1,880.00 Race 3 1700 M (Purse $620,000) NB4-Y-O & UP RESTRICTED ALLOWANCE V(NW2) 1. #7 SENOR KWANZI RMcNaughton 55.0 $673.00 $106.00 *2. #3 BLOOD SONG SEllis 52.0 1L $54.00 3. #4 EL MAESTRO BebHarvey* 54.0 3-1/4L $72.00 4. #6 BORONIA GRichards 51.0 2-3/4L Final Time : 1:51.3 Splits : 24.1, 47.4, 1:14.1, 1:42.3 Winner : 4yo dkb colt – STORM CRAFT – SHE SELL OFF Trainer : DONOVAN RUSSELL Owner : BARRINGTON BERNARD Bred by LAKELAND FARMS LTD. Qu: $295.00 Ex: $985.00 D/E: $3,724.00 Tri: $1,340.00 Rolling Triple: $3,428.00 Race 4 1000 M (R) (Purse $650,000) NB4-Y-O & UP RESTRICTED ALLOWANCE IV(NW3) *1. #6 ZI BEAST OMullings 54.0 $136.00 $67.00 2. #12 SILENCE GRichards 54.0 4-1/2L $133.00 3. #10 AMAR RHalledeen 55.0 1-1/4L $82.00 4. #14 TAZ DDawkins* 52.0 1-1/2L 5. #5 REGAL PROSPECTOR BebHarvey* 56.0 Sh.Head Final Time : 1:00.2 Splits : 22.4, 46.0 Winner : 4yo dkb colt – ADORE THE GOLD – LIMBO DANCER Trainer : ALFORD BROWN Owner : BARSHER Bred by HAM STABLES LTD. Qu: $1,226.00 Ex: $2,070.00 D/E: $3,020.00 Tri: $2,656.00 Superfecta: $39,625.00 Hi-5 carry-over : $101,721.75 Rolling Triple: $8,943.00 FRONT RUNNER DASH Race 5 1000 M (R) (Purse $1,100,000) NB2-Y-O MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT (SPONSORED BY NUTRAMIX “The BIG Feed”) 1. #2 BALTUSROL DCardenas 54.0 $146.00 $50.00 *2. #5 PRINCESS ANNIE OWalker 52.5 5-1/2L $50.00 3. #3 TOP SHELF GRichards 52.5 2-1/4L $50.00 4. #1 MATRIARCH SEllis 54.0 3L Final Time : 1:01.3 Splits : 23.3, 47.3 Winner : 2yo b colt – BLUE PEPSI LODGE – STAR FLYER Trainer :ANTHONY NUNES Owner: ELIAS HALOUTE & PATRICK A. HENRY & STEPHAN A. NARINESINGH Bred by CHRISTOPHER .BOORMAN, ELIAS HALOUTE & ANTHONY HART Qu: $119.00 Ex: $277.00 D/E: $350.00 Tri: $102.00 Rolling Triple: $3,189.00 Pick-5: $18,206.00 (5/5) Single Winner Bonus: $1,010,766.54 Race 6 800 M (S) (Purse $870,000) NB3-Y-O MAIDEN SPECIAL WEIGHT 1. #9 SMARTY TRADITION DCardenas 54.0 $631.00 $150.00 2. #6 YOUNG BOY EDDY JPatterson* 56.0 2L $80.00 3. #11 MRS. KIM OScott2 51.0 Nose $78.00 4. #4 PARAJET SEllis 54.0 1-3/4L 5. #10 BLACK POINT RHalledeen 54.5 1L Note: Horse #11 MRS.KIM passed the post 1st but was disqualified and placed 3rd. Final Time : 0:48.0 Splits : 23.2 Winner : 3yo b colt- TRADITIONAL – SMARTY MARTY Trainer : PATRICK LYNCH Owner : JOY-US RACING Bred by ARGYLL FARMS LTD. Qu: $3,716.00 Ex: $8,976.00 D/E: $1,060.00 Tri: $2,450.00 Superfecta: $19,463.00 Hi-5: $37,175.00 Rolling Triple: $6,226.00 Pick-4: $64,692.00 (4/4) Single Winner Bonus: $1,069,474.51 Race 7 1700 M (Purse $930,000) IMP3YO&UP(NW3&MDN)/NB4YO(NW3O/T)NB3YO-REST.STAKES 1. #1 SUPER SPARKLE DCardenas 54.0 $166.00 $51.00 *2. #7 MY ELLE BELLE AntThomas2 53.0 2-1/2L $50.00 3. #3 AZARIA DAThomas 50.5 11L $57.00 4. #4 ANNA LISA DDawkins* 51.0 Neck Late scratch : #2 HARRY’S TRAIN Final Time : 1:46.0 Splits : 24.1, 47.1, 1:12.1, 1:38.2 Winner : 3yo b filly – BLUEGRASS CAT – KARAKORUM KAREN Trainer : IAN SPARSARD Owner : P. J. K TEAM Bred by DANZEL BRENDEMUEHL Qu: $109.00 Ex: $231.00 D/E: $3,974.00 Tri: $133.00 Superfecta: $389.00 Rolling Triple: $2,497.00 Super-6: $134,065.00 (6/6) Race 8 1820 M (Purse $900,000) NB3YO(NW2)/IMP3YO&UP(MDN)-REST.ALL.II 1. #5 STORM AntThomas2 51.0 $418.00 $142.00 2. #9 INNOVATOR OWalker 54.0 3-1/4L $111.00 3. #8 VIKUNA KRobinson 52.5 1-3/4L $452.00 4. #2 ACKEE PIE DCardenas 50.5 *6/5 1-1/4L 5. #6 GIFT OF LAW GRichards 51.0 2L Late scratch : #1 TRADITION Final Time : 1:58.3 Splits : 28.0, 53.0, 1:17.4, 1:44.1 Winner : 3yo b gelding – NATURAL SELECTION – ALL FOR PLEASURE Trainer :WAYNE DACOSTA Owner : MR. J.P.S. Bred by Y.S. (1955) LTD. Qu: $519.00 Ex: $1,101.00 D/E: $1,969.00 (1-1) $134.00 Tri: $17,686.00 Superfecta Carry-over : $88,289.50 Hi-5: $35,737.00 Rolling Triple: $24,493.00 Race 9 1200 M (Purse $750,000) 3-Y-O & UP CLM($550,0-$500,0)/NB4YO&UP(NW4) *1. #8 LITTLE BIG HORN OScott2 52.0 $144.00 $72.00 2. #3 KILLER BEE AChatrie 55.0 1L $70.00 3. #5 PLEASANT SECRET OWalker 57.0 3-3/4L $142.00 4. #6 ICTUS LSteadman* 57.0 2-1/2L Final Time : 1:13.4 Splits : 22.3, 46.0 Winner : 5yo b horse – WAR MARSHALL – LITTLE WASP Trainer : LEROY TOMLINSON Owner : PINK ALAINA Bred by E. DACOSTA, G. DULAL-WHITEWAY, W. KONG & RAYMOND ROUSSE Qu: $243.00 Ex: $484.00 D/E: $1,648.00 Tri: $557.00 Superfecta: $2,669.00 Rolling Triple: $11,055.00 Pick-9: $23,048.00 (8/9) Race 10 1400 M (Purse $870,000) NB3YO MDN.COND.RACE (NOT FIN.2nd or 3rd IN AN OPEN MDN. RACE) 1. #7 BULA OScott2 52.0 $204.00 $85.00 2. #5 DARE TO SPEAK SEllis 56.0 2-3/4L $123.00 *3. #13 SLY STALLOON AntThomas2 54.0 Sh.Head $72.00 4. #16 LAZER LIGHT PParchment 56.0 5-1/2L Final Time : 1:30.0 Splits : 24.1, 48.1, 1:14.3 Winner : 3yo b filly – DISTORTED – TRAIL RIDER Trainer : DENNIS LEE Owner : FAYE LEE Bred by ROGER NEWMAN, MARK & SUSAN WATES Qu: $1,196.00 Ex: $2,339.00 D/E: $426.00 Tri: $1,498.00 Superfecta: $9,710.00 Hi-5 Carry-over: $105,134.25 Rolling Triple: $7,505.00 Pick-4: $22,086.00 (4/4) Single Winner Bonus: $1,213,031.43 Pick-5: Carry-over $370,526.00 Single Winner Bonus : $1,010,766.64 Super-6: $244,128.00 (6/6) Placepot-8: $:10,239.00 (8/8)
LONDON (AP): After a third loss in seven English Premier League games so far, Jose Mourinho was quick to apportion blame for Manchester United’s collapse at West Ham. While the moans about refereeing decisions were predictable after the 3-1 loss on Saturday, holding the media partly responsible was a fresher excuse to pour scorn on another ineffective display by Anthony Martial. Leaving out forward Alexis Sanchez and starting Martial was portrayed by Mourinho as bowing to public demands. It’s a decision Mourinho suggested he regretted. “Something that you are asking for a long, long, long, long time (is) to play Martial,” Mourinho told reporters. “I left Alexis out and I think that Martial is not a player very, very, very focused on his defensive duties and to play him as a second striker and trying just to cover the area of (Declan) Rice would be much easier for him.” United were ragged from the start at Olympic Stadium, conceding after five minutes when Felipe Anderson flicked in Pablo Zabaleta’s cross. The damage worsened just before halftime when Andriy Yarmolenko’s shot took a heavy deflection off Victor Lindelof to head in the opposite direction past goalkeeper David De Gea. United did pull one back in the 71st when substitute Marcus Rashford turned in Luke Shaw’s corner with his back to goal. But United’s defence was cut through with ease when Mark Noble passed to Marko Arnautovic, who struck past De Gea. Less than two months into the campaign, United’s hopes of a first Premier League title since Alex Ferguson’s retirement in 2013 are already fading. With 10 points from seven games, Mourinho has matched the club’s previous worst Premier League start under Ferguson’s successor, David Moyes. Defending champions Manchester City and Liverpool are already nine points in front of 10th-placed United. ARSENAL LATE SHOW Chelsea and Liverpool remain unbeaten, along with City, after drawing 1-1 at Stamford Bridge. Eden Hazard’s second goal against Liverpool inside 70 hours put the hosts in front in the 25th minute. The winger raced on to Mateo Kovacic’s throughball unchecked before netting past Alisson, who was briefly the world’s most expensive goalkeeper until Chelsea paid 80 million euros (US$93 million) for Kepa in August. After beating Liverpool in the League Cup on Wednesday, Chelsea were preparing to inflict the team’s first loss of the season until Daniel Sturridge came off the bench to score against his former club. The striker’s swerving shot beat Kepa in the 89th minute after three minutes on the pitch. STURRIDGE TO RESCUE Immediately after scoring Manchester City’s second goal in a 2-0 victory over Brighton, Sergio Aguero was substituted in the 66th minute. “Sergio is struggling a little bit with some problems in his feet,” City manager Pep Guardiola said. “He is not 100 per cent. He made an effort but he hasn’t recovered.” Still, the striker also managed to create the opener. Aguero played in Leroy Sane who crossed for Raheem Sterling to slide in and apply the finish in the first half. AGUERO CONCERN Arsenal left it late to seal a seventh successive victory in all competitions. A 2-0 victory over Watford was secured by Craig Cathcart’s 81st-minute own goal and Mesut Ozil’s strike. “We need to continue to improve with the control, with the possession, with the positioning,” Arsenal manager Unai Emery said. Other results: Everton 2 Fulham 0; Huddersfield 0 Tottenham 2; Newcastle 0 Leicester 2; Wolves 2 Southampton 0.
Like everything else the A Partnership for National Unity/Alliance For Change (APNU/AFC) does, the housing benefits for Ministers is now shrouded in another mountain of lies. Everything about their housing allowance now has the unmistakable stench of corruption. Parliament has confirmed that they pay rent twenty times above the statutory housing allowance for two junior Ministers, Simona Broomes and Valarie Patterson. But other Ministers are also living in rented properties. Who is paying those rentals? What is APNU/AFC hiding?Whenever the APNU/AFC is exposed for wrong doings, they have a nasty proclivity to throw people under the bus. Recently, Minister Lawrence threw the now fired CEO of the GPHC “under the bus and ran him over” for the shameful 5 million sole-sourced procurement of medicines for which GPHC paid prices averaging three times the actual cost. She pulled herself out of the mess and left CEO Johnson to suffocate in the stench of one of the many ugly APNU/AFC corrupt transactions. Now they have thrown Sherlock Isaacs and Parliament office under the bus for the abuse of the housing allowance for Ministers. Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, claimed the payments of 0,000 each per month for rentals for two junior Ministers has nothing to do with APNU/AFC and the Cabinet. It is Isaacs and Parliament office that have gone rogue. I know that Isaacs will not exceed his authority.The Ministerial Housing Benefit is legal and is standard in all democracies around the world. There is nothing wrong with the Government providing housing for Ministers. However, Ministerial Housing Benefits have statutory limits. Governments must be accountable for how they implement a Ministerial Housing benefit. How governments treat the housing benefit is reflective of how prudent they are in spending taxpayers’ money. While Ministers must be offered decent housing, ministerial housing cannot be an extravagant affair.Some Ministers live in their own homes. Their electricity, water, telephone, Internet and security bills are paid for by the Government. These Ministers also receive a ,000 housing allowance. Some Ministers live in Government-owned properties, such as the Echilbar Villas. I lived there for over 15 years as a Minister. In such cases, there is no ,000 housing allowance. Some Ministers rent homes on their own and Government has a cap on what they can pay. I am aware that the People’s Progressive Party (PPP) Government never paid rentals of 0,000 per month. But we now know after two years that Parliament pays rental of at least 0,000 per month for two Junior Ministers.How many Ministers are living in their own homes and how much are they paid as a housing allowance? How many Ministers are living in State-owned houses? How many Ministers are living in rented properties and what are the rents for these properties? These rentals and the housing allowances are part of the national budget estimates and cannot be treated as State secrets.Several APNU/AFC Ministers are living in rented properties, more than during the PPP terms of office. That more Ministers today live in rented properties is not an issue for quarrel. But the public should know how many Ministers are living in rented properties the State is paying for and how much the State is paying. APNU/AFC must come clean on this matter. This is even more critical in the milieu of suspicion that taxpayers are paying rentals that are extravagant. For example, I am informed that one Minister is paying more than million per month. Worse, this same Minister owns his own home and is renting it to the Government for one of the senior advisors. How many Ministers who own their homes are living in State-provided properties?The response cannot be that under the PPP some Ministers lived in rental properties too. That a Minister lives in a rental property is not being queried. What is being queried is that APNU/AFC is paying extravagant amounts. People want to know, they deserve to know and it is their right to know how taxpayers’ monies are being spent. Because it is taxpayers’ money, this cannot be treated as State secrets. If APNU/AFC is unwilling to tell us, then we want to know what is it they are hiding from us. This matter is now public and the Auditor General should investigate this matter urgently.Send comments to firstname.lastname@example.org
…Christmas is this?Yes…yes…yes…your Eyewitness knows when it comes to Christmas, we Guyanese have that “stiff upper lip” habit of our old colonial tutors: no matter how black things are, we’ll somehow use our ingenuity to celebrate Christmas. But it doesn’t have to be so, does it? It was really insulting to ordinary folks to have Granger declaring “Oil is here!! Oil is here!!” to take our minds off the dire straits into which Granger and the PNC have plunged us.Do they really think we’re so daft that we won’t notice them living high off the hog on their massive salaries and perks, while, at best, public sector workers are bought off with piddling “bonuses”?? So what about the 7000 in the sugar belt they fired and the rest who haven’t gotten a bonus – or a raise – in the five years they’ve been in office??Think of what could’ve been. Over in Suriname waters, their Government got a US$100 MILLION bonus for a field contiguous to our Canje Block – where no oil’s been found up to now!! While here, where there are 6 BILLION barrels and counting – we got just a lousy US$18 million. Now you’ll hear the Government bleating that the contract had already been signed by Janet Jagan back in 1999 when no one could REALLY be sure there was oil under the ocean. But that was a licence for prospecting – which had expired by the time oil was struck in 2015 and Trotman gave away the store. That had to be renewed – plus a production licence had to be procured.Imagine if we had gotten the US$500 million or so, that would’ve been a fair bargain!! Not only would the Government have been in a position to match the 50% pay raise they gave themselves for all other workers – they could’ve followed their CoI’s recommendation, stabilised the sugar industry with some judicious injection of funds and bring it to a point of sale by now!! A win-win situation all over!But instead, here we are, trying to make do on Christmas day. Your Eyewitness urges all you dear readers to think of what Christmas day signals when it comes to real leadership. Sacrifice, that’s what Jesus was all about. Have the leaders who were catapulted into office in 2015 shown any inclination to make sacrifices for the good of the people – meaning you and me??Have they even minimally cut back their sybaritic lifestyles funded by our taxes? All you have to do is drive past their houses – or mansions and palaces – this evening. Maybe they’ll throw you a scrap!It’s the best of times (for the PNC) and the worst of times (for us).…promiseThe old poem by Coleridge, “Rime of the Ancient Mariner”, gave us the famous line: “water, water, everywhere but not a drop to drink” and of course, the phrase “an albatross around your neck”. With the latest and 15th oil strike in the Stabroek Block, it would seem that for us, it’s “Oil, oil everywhere but not a drop to use”!! And the oil might then very well prove to be an albatross around our neck.In addition to the new strike, of course, oil is now being pumped into that great, big FPSO and it’s from there that the oil operators will be shipping out their 85.5% and hand off the measly remainder of 14.5% to us. The Government has already lined up in secret the companies they will sell our first share – the very same oil operators who’ll be shipping their big share out.There are no plans to bring even a drop of oil to our shore to refine and add value. Kinda like our sugar which was shipped for hundreds of years abroad to be refined!!…eyesGreenidge enthused: “All eyes on Guyana”!! But the question is, does Guyana have its eyes on them?Not only carpetbaggers but hustlers and crooks of every stripe will be following their eyes to our shores!!
Every year, October 17 is observed by United Nations’ member countries as International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. According to the most recent UN estimates, 1.3 billion people still live in multidimensional poverty; meaning, they are not just poor in terms of income, they are also lacking in health, education, and living standards; and they risk falling behind further when faced with conflict, sickness, unemployment, or natural disasters.The theme for this year’s observances is: “Coming together with those furthest behind to build an inclusive world of universal respect for human rights and dignity”. This year’s theme is quite fitting, since there is still an extremely huge gap between those who are considered below the poverty line and those who are considered to be above.The UN has noted that, in the 25 years since the first International Day for the Eradication of Poverty, human development has lifted hundreds of millions of people out of poverty, and has increased economic and social opportunities for many more across the world. Yet, while hundreds of millions of people have moved above the poverty line, development has not been able to reach everyone.According to the UN, on average, a child born today in a country with very high human development can expect to live almost 20 years longer, and be in school seven years more than a child born in a country with low human development. These statistics represent lost opportunities for millions.In Guyana, too many of our citizens are still considered living below the poverty line, and many more are still waiting to access the opportunities that would allow them to lift themselves out of poverty.President David Granger had said before that Guyana has enough resources to banish poverty forever. However, after three years of gaining political power, the nation is still waiting to see what concrete plans and programmes would be put in place to address poverty and to create “the good life” for all, which was promised on the campaign trail during the May 2015 polls.Just recently again, during his special address to the National Assembly, the President regurgitated this same promise of providing a “good life” for all Guyanese. He said his vision is to create a good life for all Guyanese based on happy communities, happy households and happy people.According to the President, “The ‘good life’ entails providing every citizen with opportunities to be the best that they can be. The ‘good life’ is about securing sustained economic prosperity, ensuring citizens’ access to quality public services, and promoting social cohesion… eliminating extreme poverty, and removing social, ethnic and geographic inequalities.”All of these promises sound very well to the ordinary man; and we are certain that the President means well. However, one cannot ignore the present realities our country is faced with. The President’s remarks come at a time when there is a pending increase in tolls at the Berbice River Bridge, when sugar workers are facing extremely tough times due to the downsizing of the sugar estates, when bauxite workers are uncertain about their future with the impending closure of Rusal, when miners are complaining that they are being pressured by the authorities, and so on.It should be noted, too, that the economy is performing very poorly, and there is hardly anything being done to create job opportunities or generate wealth in the society.That said, with First Oil expected in 2020, there is some hope that there would be a turnaround of the economy, and citizens would begin to enjoy the many benefits of the emerging oil and gas sector. Given the many concerns being raised with respect to the management of that sector, the President has assured the National Assembly that Government is strategically positioned to manage the oil and gas sector. In fact, he said steps are being taken to ensure that “the revenues which accrue from the sector will not be squandered, but instead will be invested strategically in building human and institutional capacity, addressing our infrastructural deficit, and providing economic security for future generations”.With the promise of oil money, our hope is that the Government, with the involvement of other stakeholders, would intensify their efforts towards eradicating poverty and ensuring that the promise of a ‘good life’ actually becomes a reality, rather than mere political rhetoric.
Over time, numerous cases of domestic violence have been reported in the Guyanese media. Many persons were brutally killed, in some instances. Unfortunately, it continues despite awareness efforts and the much touted training of law enforcement officers, who are expected to be the first step of recourse in regard to the lodging of complaints.There is more than a subtle irony in the continuance of this societal scourge, in spite of the relentless efforts and the plethora of available mechanisms to inform and educate. The problem is much larger than what appears in the news, including the social media outlets, as many cases go unreported. This therefore gives much credence to the appearance of an underestimated reality.Many reasons have been made known that can deter an abused victim from seeking the intervention of the law. Among them, in no specific order of impact, are aspects of culture, shame, dependency and its redounding lack of empowerment for some, and the lack of confidence in law enforcement itself, precipitated by the reported trivialising of the issue in some instances.One may posit that education is a primary concern. On the other hand, one can argue that education has been more profound in recent times. Pertinent would be to ask the question if the other factors subvert the heeding of educational messaging. While the answer may be assumed, it would make for interesting and informative research.As that is contemplated, the magnitude of the impact on children cannot be underestimated. Many have cruelly been made witnesses to the horrific assaults on their mothers and, to a lesser extent, their fathers. Those ghastly images, especially for some who watched as life was snuffed out, are not only lasting, but profoundly traumatising.When young minds are so broadsided, the impact, if not managed, lingers for life. Not that the images are erasable, but with meaningful and sustained interventions, the trauma can potentially be mitigated, thereby aiding in better shaping of lives. The entire spectrum of what therefore constitutes counselling then becomes vital. This naturally raises the question of the availability of adequate intervening mechanisms.While it is always heartening to hear that surviving victims and witnesses to such horrific incidents would be counselled, it would be very informative, for the benefit of all, to know the extent of what is available and offered. Realistically, expectations cannot be for what obtains in the developed nations; however, there must be something tangible in keeping with available resources, with upgrades foremost in planning.This is not, in any way, suggesting that there isn’t an effective mechanism. However, counselling can be an extensive process for some, depending on the circumstances. Given the plethora of incidents that unfortunately continue, and which would make added demands on the system, the question of adequacy of trained staff, needed facilities, and support systems becomes more pertinent.Not too long ago, the country had the unenviable tag of having the highest rate of suicide per capita. Prior to that categorising, some aspects had made news internationally, prompting a local organisation to call for suicide to be made a national priority, given its impact on society and the trauma it imposes on surviving relatives.It was stated that the declaration would not only bring additional focus, but would have positioned the issue to be afforded the necessary resources for its mitigation.It was not going to be a panacea to stop suicide; but, effectively structured, it increases the potential across the country, with the assistance of stakeholders, to maximise effectiveness of information gathering for targeted intervention. It would also increase confidence in the support system to help break social inhibitors where necessary, and to better edify.It is no different for domestic violence. While there is a disadvantage in being unable to accurately quote figures, based on extensive research if available on the amount of people lost, injured and disfigured, and those scarred for life as a result of domestic violence, it must be extremely high in proportion to our population. Clearly, the highest number would be those who are left traumatised.This, therefore, must be seen as a serious cause for concern, and a compelling reason for consideration to be declared a national priority. This is an apolitical issue, and is not confined to any one group, thereby making it less difficult to garner national support. In such small societies, the impact permeates throughout and away from just the families.Children reading and learning about incidents through television and social media are in many ways impacted too, especially if one of their own is affected. In the context herein, the pervasiveness and impact of trauma cannot, and must not, be underestimated. That of road accidents must also be taken into account, for too much is at stake for people and the nation.
Social media is a world within a world and for those who were born in the 21st Century, technology is only but a natural phenomenon. Cell phones, iPods, and video games are practically inevitable for teens and young adults. Along with these technologies come social media networking, which is part of the daily routine for many. Social networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter and MySpace have millions of visitors daily. Facebook alone has over 500 million users which make it the most popular social network website on Earth. Research conducted by Facebook shows that 50 per cent of its users are active users who log on daily and spend over 700 billion minutes per month on the site. There is no doubt that social media and social networking are here to stay; however, added to these ‘natural’ luxuries are risks and dangers.While these sites’ open dialogue allows individuals to express themselves, there must be some amount of user censorship not necessarily by the domain host but rather by individuals themselves. Creating a profile, giving details about yourself, hobbies and educational background are all acceptable; however, for many every aspect of their day, work and lives are posted. Like driving, the users of social media should be cognisant of the five C’s – caution, care, common sense, courtesy and consideration – as many of the things posted can arise in the future to haunt thrones. Only recently, it was observed locally that a number of young persons were posting on social media their intent to resign from their current place of employment. Common sense – one of the 5 C’s – would inform that such information is personal and should not be posted on a social network, as such behaviours can stymie future employment.What if the situation changed and that person needs to stay at the current place of employment? What if an intended employer does a social media search and sees such uncouth behaviour? It is thought-provoking that an employee can overlook his /her posting on any social networking site and talk their way out of potential employment. It seems as though these consequences are often not in the minds of teens and young adults when they take to the social media world to express themselves. Interestingly, many young persons do not take into account or acknowledge the dangers of such postings on social networking sites since to them, all the social sites seem innocent.Research has shown one of the greatest impacts of social networking is on the social skills of people. According to a BBC report, while on one hand, social networking sites seem to bring people together and connected; on the other hand, it creates social isolation. Research has shown that older generations of networkers learnt how to communicate and interact long before networking was even a thought, but much of the younger generations do not interact socially. According to the report, social networking has created a serious breach in the ability of young people to communicate and interact with each other.It is clear that there is evidence suggesting that social networking can be risky to a dangerous extent, but it is an area that cannot be ignored, as it is the driving force of the world today. Like the many pleasures of life, social networking can be beneficial in moderation; however, unfortunately, moderation and the social media world do not coincide in society. As such, all one can hope for is that young people have a deeper understanding and be conscious of what they are posing on social media, taking into consideration its impact today, tomorrow and years ahead.