Category: bqekenqv

Liberia to Receive Over US$256M MCC Grant from US Gov’t

first_imgLiberia is expected to shortly receive more in access US$256.7 million from the US Government through the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) compact program, after accomplishing the MCC Compact eligibility threshold following government’s performance on key governance indicators and the successful implementation of a compact threshold program in 2013.According to a statement from the Ministry of Finance and Development Planning (MFDP), the compact negotiated between the two governments will provide the GoL a grant in the amount of US$256.7 million to fund projects which constitutes the largest contribution to the rehabilitation of the Mt. Coffee Hydro Power Plant, rehabilitation of the water intake and pipeline from Mt. Coffee to Millsburg, construction of regional road maintenance centers in River Gee and Tubmanburg, as well as erection of a LEC Training Center.As Liberia is expected to sign the compact in early October 2015 in Washington D.C., the MCC compact will provide significant resources in further transforming the Liberian economy leading to increased employment and poverty reduction. The statement also noted that the government’s attainment of the MCC compact threshold also marks the Sirleaf Administration’s serious commitment to good governance and the successful implementation of important policy and regulatory reforms necessary to stimulate private investment. The MCC Compact Program in Liberia is implemented through a Compact Development Core team headed by former Foreign Minister Mr. Monie Captan, under the leadership and direction of Liberia’s Minister of Finance and Development Planning Honorable Amara M. Konneh.The projects funded under the MCC compact will be implemented over a five (5) year period through a special purpose agency to be created by the Government. The agency will be known as the Millennium Challenge Account – Liberia (MCA-Liberia). The MCC is an independent, bilateral U.S. Government foreign aid agency established by Congress that is based on the principle that aid is most effective when it reinforces good governance and economic prosperity. In 2010, the MCC and government of Liberia signed a $15 million threshold program grant agreement that focused on improving land rights and access, increasing girls’ primary education enrollment and retention, and improving Liberia trade policy and practices.Recently a Government of Liberia delegation entered into compact negotiations with the MCC from July 28 to 30, 2015 in Washington D.C. Previous MCC compact projects in Africa have seen Ghana, Tanzania, Morocco, and Benin, among beneficiary countries. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Will Ellen Grace UP Launch Tomorrow?

first_imgMany UP partisans have complained that the President’s alleged treatment of VP Boakai is unfair.The official launch of the ruling Unity Party campaign is on the horizon, and many Liberians, especially UP partisans and supporters, cannot wait to lock-down Monrovia tomorrow, Saturday September 16. But the much anticipated moment of the launch would be the arrival, or not, of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf—a moment, it is believed, that would serve as a maker or breaker of the VP’s presidential quest.The ruling party and its standard bearer emeritus seem to be caught between the scissors, and many are predicting that such being the case, the President’s absence would deal a harsh blow to Boakai’s candidacy, while her presence would create much noise.Unsubstantiated reports indicate that the members of the party’s hierarchy are divided over whether the President should be allowed at the VP’s campaign launch tomorrow, as she is yet to be seen with him on the campaign trail. Many top officials of the party and government who were contacted by the Daily Observer to find out whether or not the President will be present at the launch declined to comment, begging that they do not want to be embroiled in an unnecessary conflict.However, every partisan of the Unity Party should be aware that the success of Vice President Boakai at the polls on October 10 hinges on the action or inaction of the President—and many see the Saturday launch as the most ideal time and platform for President Sirleaf to make that all important statement on whether or not she truly supports the presidential bid of her chief lieutenant, who has stood by her for the past twelve years.Although they are saving face, it is no secret that the Unity Party has been in serious disarray. The party is divided into two factions: the President Sirleaf faction on one hand, and the Vice President Boakai and Varney Sherman faction on the other. This rift has resulted in the President seeming to not be in support of VP Boakai, but rather some members of the opposition bloc, specifically the Liberty Party, and lately the Coalition for Democratic Change.The President’s recent visit to the UP campaign headquarters to attend an executive meeting created additional rifts within the party as some top officials who had not approved her attendance walked out of the meeting. In recent times, staunch members of the UP, especially former chairman, Senator Varney Sherman, and the assistant secretary general for public affairs, Mohammed Ali, have stated publicly that since Boakai made his intention known for the presidency, they are yet to see any support coming from the President, though that was rebuffed by the office of the President at a press conference in Monrovia.The President’s absence from tomorrow’s launch will send a clear signal that her courting of the CDC or Liberty Party is clearly a reality. While it is true that politics is about interest, many UP partisans have complained that the President’s alleged treatment of the VP is unfair. “This was the party that elected you to two terms with VP Boakai by your side, why can’t you reciprocate this gesture?” cried some partisans.While some partisans and observers believe that President Sirleaf’s support to the VP will boost his quest for the presidency, especially with regards to her international connections, there are several partisans who also believe that the alleged shunning of the VP by the President is putting him at a vintage point, because the president has lost her popularity with the electorates.“We don’t want her to be at the launch. She has not been supportive, and we no longer want her support. It is better she stays away so we can get our votes,” James Garlea, a staunch UP supporter in Montserrado County District#3, said. Garlea said the President is doing VP Boakai a favor by not supporting him, because her support would not have given Boakai’s presidential quest the present momentum that he believes is gradually taking him to the Executive Mansion.But another partisan, Elijah Jacobs, said VP Boakai is running on President Sirleaf’s legacy, and as such it is weird for some partisans to demonize her at this critical juncture. “I’m looking forward to seeing President Sirleaf at the UP launch tomorrow. She has done well for this country and she must be respected,” Mr. Jacobs said.Partisans of other parties are also equally concerned about the friction within the UP. One such person is Faluku Freeman, a supporter of Dr. H. Boima Fahnbulleh, the standard bearer of the Liberia People’s Party (LPP). Mr. Freeman noted on his Facebook page, “Madam President, Saturday will be your party’s launch of campaign and the biggest festival of your own party as witnessed in 2005 and 2011, where you paraded the nook and cranny of the principal streets of Monrovia with Oldman Joe Boakai as your able and trusted running mate. Your slogan was ‘It will hold, it will surely hold.’My concern here is, are you going to partake in this big jamboree of your party come Saturday in order to break the silence or end all of the negative speculations about you? Remember that I’m not a member or supporter of the Unity Party, but I will love to see you at such a political jamboree. And my admiration has its root from the 2011 jamboree where you happily looked in the face of Oldman Joe Boakai,” he said.Since the clock began ticking towards the 2017 presidential and legislative elections, the party has been rocked by a series of resignations, even in the midst of preparations for D-day (election day). Several key members who worked hard and vigorously campaigned to ensure the victory of President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf in the 2011 elections left the party, leaving it all up to her Vice President Joseph Boakai, now standard bearer, to fight for the presidency alone. Some of them include Information Minister Lenn Eugene Nagbe, who resigned his post as Secretary General; former Grand Bassa County Senator Gbehzongar Findley; and many others. But others such as former Gender and Children Protection Minister, Julia Duncan Cassell; head of the National Bureau of Concession, Ciatta Bishop; former Superintendent of Bong County, Selena Mappy-Polson among others, registered to run for legislative seats, but on the tickets of opposition parties, after the interpretation of the Code of Conduct by the Supreme Court. However, the party’s spokesman, Mohammed Ali, said although they registered on different tickets, they remain committed members of the party and have been lending their support to Boakai’s presidential bid.Saturday will be a defining moment for VP Boakai, who the president has always demanded that he prove his manly worth by capturing the presidency on his own merits. This launch is a moment of two resounding outcomes: The VP stands on his own, or he gets the backing of his boss.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

TEN/10 Softball Cricket Championship Cup set for action

first_imgRegion Five (Mahaica-Berbice) is set to launch its first ever Ten/10 Softball Cricket Championship Cup, under the sponsorship of ArrowHead Promotions.Sponsors of the Softball Cricket Championship CupThe competition, which commences on November 18, will be played across venues in Region Five.This event — which promises to have softball enthusiasts on the edges of their seats — will bring the curtains down on the region’s sporting activities for 2018.Softball teams participating in this tournament are set to do battle in a most competitive environment, as each team and player will vie for glory in a competition that would reward the grand prize winner with more than $300,000.last_img

‘People don’t appreciate the amount of effort we’ve put in to buy into Conte’

first_imgAndy Townsend joined the Weekend Sports Breakfast and heaped praise on Chelsea’s players for buying into new manager Antonio Conte’s philosophy this season.The Blues secured the Premier League title with a 1-0 win over West Bromwich Albion on Friday night, ending Tottenham Hotspur’s slim chances of pipping their rivals to the trophy.Former Blues midfielder Townsend told talkSPORT: “They [Chelsea] have been outstanding; they’ve been the best team; they’ve been the best prepared; they’ve been well-drilled; they haven’t panicked when they’ve had one or two bad moments, they’ve dug in again and regrouped.“They’re an amazing team and you can only see them getting stronger.”Conte took over last summer following a terrible campaign that saw Chelsea finish 10th in the league, and the Italian took little time to transform a depleted west London outfit.And Townsend has spoken of the work the Blues players have had to put in this term to adapt to the changes Conte has implemented.“I spoke to Thibaut Courtois right after the game last night, and he said people don’t always appreciate the amount of effort we’ve all had to put in to buy into Antonio Conte, to take on board exactly the way he sees it and the way he believes it works.“And again, we were interviewing Frank Lampard and Eidur Gudjohnsen after the game, and they said unless you buy into it, unless you believe it, unless you’re prepared to really go with it when a new manager arrives, it’s not going to happen, it won’t work.He added: “We see someone like Antonio Conte walk through the door and you see him have it a little bit awkward to start with, and then he changes it and goes with what he feels he knows best.“From that moment Chelsea became the champions-elect if you like, because then, automatically, everything dropped into place and all of a sudden they were one.“Whereas at the start of the season I think he was having a look at one or two; he was trying to understand what perhaps Chelsea had done previously that had worked for them.“Then all of a sudden, it was, ‘right, listen, we’re all going to do this my way.’”Italy legend backs Conte to build on Chelsea success despite Inter Milan rumoursConte’s passion, statement wins and the bench – what’s behind Chelsea’s successWhy Leicester’s title win last season has taken the shine off Chelsea’s ‘miracle’ – Blues fan opinionlast_img read more

Antelope Valley Football Friday

first_imgHE SAID “They’ve had our number the last two years, and I’m sure they’re going to try to come out and beat us again, because they’ve got their backs against the wall.” _ Antelope Valley RB Andre Crenshaw, on the Antelopes’ showdown tonight at Lancaster. The Eagles have won the past two meetings, but A.V. can clinch an outright Golden League title with a victory. SPOTLIGHT AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week With two weeks left in the regular season, it’s time to start thinking about the playoffs. No Golden League team likely will receive one of four seeds in the Southern Section Div. III playoffs – first place Antelope Valley is ranked just sixth in the coaches poll and second-place Lancaster is eighth – but several Div. XII teams from the area might receive them. Rosamond is fourth in Div. XII, with Vasquez sixth and Mojave ninth. The coaches’ poll generally is a good indicator of playoff seeding. TRIVIA QUESTION Littlerock’s 50-3 victory over Knight was a milestone win. When had the Lobos last won a Golden League game? OFF THE CHARTS Punting yardage reflects two things: how good the punter is and how many times his team had to punt. Contrasting punting yardage to rushing yardage is one way to evaluate a team’s offense: TeamRushing YardsPunting Yards Antelope Valley1,319626 Highland1,391594 Lancaster1,781769 Littlerock1,0851,091 Quartz Hill1,533577 Palmdale1,319410 Knight7561,522 OFFBEAT Palmdale coach Jeff Williams shook his head seeing the dark clouds threatening his practice Thursday afternoon. Again, weather before a game against Highland looked ominous. “Seems like every time we play them recently, it’s raining or snowing or freezing,” he said. “Last year it was sleeting, two years ago it was pouring, and three years ago they beat us and it ended up costing us the league title outright.” According to, there’s a 20 percent chance of rain this morning. Temperature at game time is expected to be in the high 40s to low 50s. TRIVIA ANSWER The Lobos beat Lancaster 33-30 on Nov. 15, 2002160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Dunn Finishes Runner-Up At Shortened Drake Bulldog Invitational

first_img NORWALK, Iowa – The final round of the Drake Bulldog Invitational was rained out Tuesday as Grace Dunn led the Drake University women’s golf team finishing runner-up in the shortened event.  Print Friendly Version On Monday, Dunn led the 44-player field through 18-holes as she fired a two-over par 74. She then recorded an 80 to finish the day in second-place with a total score of 154 and end up a stroke behind Loyola’s Jessie Staed (153=79-74). Sophomore Aimee Gerschke registered a total score of 165 (83-82) and tied for 23rd-place. Fellow sophomore Sigurlaug Jonsdottir carded a 166 (84-82), while senior Brooke Miller recorded a 169 (86-83). Freshman Sam Paulak rounded out the team’s effort with a score of 173 (89-84). The Bulldogs finished tied for fifth-place with a score of 654 (327-327), while MVC foe Loyola led the seven-team field with a score of 629 (324-305). Drake Bulldogs Invitational Final Results center_img The Bulldogs close out the fall season at the MVC Preview on Oct. 16-17 in Newton, Kan at the Sand Creek Station Golf Course. Story Links Senior Madison Glennie, who is playing as an individual, finished tied for 20th-place with a score of 163 (84-79), while sophomore Reilly Krohe registered a 196 (96-100).last_img read more

Sharks’ Joe Pavelski returns for Game 7 vs. Avalanche

first_imgSAN JOSE — With their season on the line, the Sharks got captain Joe Pavelski back for Game 7 of their second round series against the Colorado Avalanche on Wednesday at SAP Center.It’s Pavelski’s first game since April 23 when he suffered a concussion and a cut to his head after the back of his helmet slammed against the ice in Game 7 of the Sharks’ first round series against the Vegas Golden Knights.Pavelski started the game on a line with Tomas Hertl and Evander Kane, as Sharks coach Pete …last_img

Warriors’ Omari Spellman says he has lost 40 pounds since July

first_imgOne of the Warriors’ new centers says he’s a whole new man.Omari Spellman said Monday at the team’s media day that he is down to a slim 275 pounds after weighing in at 315 during NBA summer league.Spellman said he plans to lose 10 more pounds by the time the Warriors open the regular season Oct. 24 against the Clippers.Summer League, I’m pretty sure you guys saw, I was pretty heavy. In Summer League I was about 315,” Spellman said. “This morning before breakfast I was 275, so still want to …last_img

Meet Bafana’s number-one fan

first_imgSaddam loves Bafana Bafana and his vuvuzela. International journalists find him an interesting fan to interview (Images: Bongani Nkosi) MEDIA CONTACTS • Freddie “Saddam” Maake Football fan and musician +27 82 950 7619 RELATED ARTICLES • World Cup world record for SA fan • Bafana go out with pride intact • Black Stars shine for Africa • The vuvuzela: Bafana’s 12th man • Bafana frenzy grips the nation • The master of the makarapaBongani NkosiMost South Africans love Bafana Bafana, the national football team, but some love it more than others – and are always ready to go to daunting heights for it.Freddie “Saddam” Maake is one of those fanatics who gives his all when it comes to supporting Bafana. In victory or defeat, Maake is always behind the team, using his trademark vuvuzela trumpet to inspire other fans to show the same spirit.“I always tell supporters they must not boo Bafana when they’re not playing well,” he said when I met him at his home in Tembisa, a township east of Johannesburg. “It hurts the players. The players must always be strong.“I like to be a technical advisor to supporters. I encourage them to travel with the team,” he added.Maake’s dining room is laden with football memorabilia, ranging from makarapas, vuvuzelas, supporter awards and photographs of him with top players. “This is my museum,” he said.This unyielding passion for Bafana, the 55-year-old father of nine recalls, was ignited in 1992 when South African sport was reincorporated into the international arena after years of isolation. Initially he was part of the almost 42 000-strong crowd who showed up to support the match between South Africa and Zimbabwe on 16 August of that year.“I travelled with Bafana Bafana to Zimbabwe in 1992, and from there the show went on,” he said. “I remember we lost that game 4-1.”A football stadium is never dull when Maake and his friends are in the stands. Rest assured that when they’re there, the fan zone becomes a hotbed of vibrancy: they wear comical outfits to grab attention and loud toots ooze from their vuvuzelas. They also sing and dance to get the atmosphere going.One of Maake’s friends, David Mabu, describes their style of support as a fusion of African and European subcultures. “We’re unique, as we mix African and European energy.”Bafana’s top fanMaake can be seen as one of the “godfathers” of the type of stadium atmosphere that’s experienced nowadays during local and international football games played in the country, having followed Bafana since the 1990s.“We were very excited at the stadiums in 1996,” he said, referring to Bafana’s winning of the Africa Cup of Nations in that year.It was in 1997 that he was first recognised as being the number-one follower of local football, winning a national award for “supporter of the year”.South Africa’s first participation in the Fifa World Cup in 1998 in France brings back great memories for Maake. “I won a trip to the World Cup for being a number-one supporter,” he said.He’s also been to many of the Africa Cup of Nation (Afcon) tournaments, he said. “We have travelled to most of the Afcons. I remember in 2001 we went to Mali.”The 2002 Fifa World Cup in Korea and Japan was also a highlight for him – as was the following Cup in Germany in 2006. Although South Africa didn’t qualify for this, Maake said the South African Football Association (Safa) sponsored his trip to attend. “Safa sent me there to represent South Africa, to fly our flag.”According to Maake, Safa has sponsored most of his trips and tickets to games in recognition of his efforts. “Safa has really been supportive to me.”As an official supporter, he’s been to more than 20 countries – including Denmark, Egypt and Swaziland – and always takes along a vuvuzela, an instrument he claims to have invented, to cheer Bafana on.Awards recognising his passion keep coming through: most recently, in March, he jetted off to Ghana with a Safa official to collect an accolade for being such an enthusiastic fan.‘I’m a football slave’Also an ardent fan of the local Kaizer Chiefs team, Maake practically lives for football. “I live soccer. I drink soccer … I’m a soccer slave,” he said.“If you say ‘let’s go to the stadium’, I’ll take my vuvuzela and go there.”Although his fanaticism started in the 1990s, Maake said he has been a fan of football since 1965, and has even lost a few jobs owing to his obsession with stadiums and the sport. Nowadays he earns a living from selling his music album, Vuvuzela Saddam Maake Volume 2, released this year, and vuvuzelas. He trades from his house and stadiums.2010 Fifa World CupMaake has already been to 12 of the matches, including all three Bafana games, and has drawn a number of tourists to his home since the kick-off earlier this month.Although disappointed that South Africa has been knocked out, he’s still enjoying the tournament. “I was hoping to attend 20 matches, at least,” he said. He’s now supporting Ghana and Brazil.Always positive about the sport in South Africa and Bafana’s future, Maake said he’s consoled by the fact that the country is hosting the “best World Cup” ever, and that it will leave a lasting legacy.“It’s not the field of play that matters … this is the best World Cup you’ll ever see. One team will win, but the stadiums are ours. Beyond 2010 we’ll [continue to] use these stadiums,” he said.last_img read more

Leaving A Trail of Negativity Behind You

first_imgYou’re entitled to your opinions. It’s okay that you have strong political leanings in some direction. You might even believe that it’s your duty and responsibility to share your opinions with the rest of us. But you might do well to consider whether social media is the right forum for sharing those strong political opinions.You are leaving a wake of trail of negativity behind you. And when someone does try to discern who you really are by looking at your social media presence, they’re going to find a long trail of divisiveness and negativity.How Do You Want to Be Known?Your social media presence is a representation of who you are. It’s your digital surrogate.If you post interesting, educational, uplifting, enlightening, and value creating content, you will be known as a positive person with good ideas. The power of social media is that it helps you to build a strong personal brand.But if instead of posting things that are positive you post negative, divisive, scarcity-minded political content, you are going to be known as being a petty, partisan, biased, and negative person. Now, you don’t have to like the fact that half or more of the people that look at your social media presence find you offensive, but that won’t stop them from making a judgement about who you are and what you stand for.Social Media: It’s ForeverYou are leaving a long trail behind you. The content you create, the comments that you leave, and the posts and pictures you share are stacked up behind you. It’s a trail that anyone can follow. That trail provides them with a picture of who they are going to find when they reach the trail’s end. Many will discover the clues you’ve left, decide you are an adversarial, argumentative, negative person, and they’ll simply step off the trail.Choose carefully what the trail you are leaving behind you represents. Does it represent your biggest and best self? Or does it represent something less than that?QuestionsHow do you judge people who’s entire social media stream is partisan politics?Better still, what judgment do you make about people with a social media trail of harsh political pictures and quotes that are exactly opposite to what you believe?What does the trail you’re leaving behind say about you? Is that what you want it to say? Essential Reading! Get my 3rd book: Eat Their Lunch “The first ever playbook for B2B salespeople on how to win clients and customers who are already being serviced by your competition.” Buy Nowlast_img read more