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Another failed witch-hunting expedition

first_imgDear Editor,The freeing of Dr Jennifer Westford and Ms Margaret Cummings is another failure in the latest witch-hunting expedition of this Government, as well as another nail in the Coalition’s coffin. They had instituted trumped-up charges, and were further embarrassed by a no-case conviction statement from a magistrate.I do not know how many more trumped-up charges this Coalition must pursue for them to hear those embarrassing words, “You have no case”; but such is the sorry situation of this bunch we have for a Government, where they would not accept the fact that their incompetence is the real problem, and not the PPP/C, who ran a successful Government, one based on sound economic principles and one that had as its benchmark above board management.So, to earn a conviction of any kind on any one of the PPP/C administrators is a definite no-no. The prudent management of state funds during the PPP/C era dictated that they follow the straight and narrow, so I am convinced that all of these witch-hunts would turn up empty.The Coalition, when in Opposition, represented a conglomeration of parties whose sole aim and purpose was to get the PPP/C out of office. So they embarked on a vicious campaign call of “corruption! The PPP/C is corrupt.” This followed a mass appeal that there would be mass incarceration of “all” PPP/C personnel. So, at the inauguration of that very same coalition, a financial audit was set up to check on the books to unearth all financial improprieties, then round-up all PPP/C so-called fraudsters and put them in jail. To date, that has not taken place, so what we are witnessing here with this last dismissal case is a mad scramble to get a conviction somewhere somehow. Jaipaul Sharma is hard pressed to bring in someone guilty. This is the million-dollar question he is faced with: How can he get a conviction?So, he, in his desperation, is calling for a reinstitution of charges against the two former PPP/C officers. What an oddity!But let me remind Sharma of a few things: it was this very same Junior Finance Minister who, after being paid millions to conduct audits into the former Government’s accounts, said there was no evidence of misconduct or embezzlement of public funds. I am sure folks are familiar with those statements. So how can Sharma now expect Westford and Cummings to be guilty of anything when he was the one in the first place who cleared them of wrongdoing? It just does not make any sense.In the same vein, it does not make any sense to re-institute charges against the two, because the same result would prevail. If anyone should face the heat, it should be Sharma; because to so brazenly drag these two fine ladies to court, and after wasting millions of taxpayers’ money he cannot get a conviction, Sharma is the one who is plain guilty, and should be thrown in jail for peddling lies.But as the situation unfolds, the Government is not giving up. It is prepared to waste taxpayers’ millions in another shot in the air with this political manifesto of massive corruption under the PPP/C Government, without a shred of evidence to support their claim.Finally, Sharma is digging in his heels, seeing time is running out on him and his Government to prove that “corruption” fairytale story true.  Sharma, for his own part, is also at his wits’ end to earn his keep as “a minister” in the Coalition. He must show some degree of “relevance” in that coalition of sorts, but what he has to understand is that a lie is a lie, and no amount of talk can change it. I rest my case.Respectfully,Neil Adamslast_img read more

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NCAA Season 93 Preview: St. Benilde Blazers looking to get out of cellar

first_imgEthel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ China furious as Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong And that change of culture is exactly what the neophyte mentor wants as he starts his journey with the Blazers.“That’s what we’re hoping for, that somehow, that experience for them, that snake-pit down there would give them a sense of urgency, a sense of motivation that we don’t want to be back there again,” he said.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool starsTang knows that bringing St. Benilde back to its old glory is going to be a tough climb. But just like every rebuilding team, he’s trusting the process.“Right now, we don’t really expect much. It’s the changing of the culture and the environment and we’re trying to change that whole atmosphere. What we’re trying to get through is trying to work as a team. We’re struggling, but hopefully, when the season starts, we’ll be able to mend ourselves working together.” Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games MOST READ Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Hail to the Timberland King of the Mountain The Blazers will once again lean on Gerard Castor, JJ Domingo, and Senegalese big man Clement Leutcheu in their campaign, but Tang believes that with the right breaks, his whole team is capable of doling out significant contributions for the Taft side this year.“The whole team is in a different level in terms of everyone of them are equal and ready to contribute.It’s just a matter of giving them the right time and exposure in the game. I feel that everybody can help our team this time around,” he said. LATEST STORIES View comments Head coach: Ty TangLast Season: 1-17Holdovers: JJ Domingo, Gerard Castor, Clement LeutcheuKey Losses: Christian Fajarito, Fons SaavedraKey Additions: Matthew Johnson, Unique NaboaStuck in the cellar for the past two seasons, St. Benilde is eyeing to finally get out of the muck under new coach TY Tang.ADVERTISEMENTcenter_img Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Another vape smoker nabbed in Lucena Cayetano to unmask people behind ‘smear campaign’ vs him, SEA Games Pagasa: Kammuri now a typhoon, may enter PAR by weekend What ‘missteps’? Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next LOOK: Jane De Leon meets fellow ‘Darna’ Marian Rivera NCAA Season 93 Preview: St. Benilde Blazers650 viewsSportsVentuno Web Player 4.51 For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity.last_img read more

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19 days agoBarcelona coach Valverde admits Dembele dismissal baffled him

first_imgBarcelona coach Valverde admits Dembele dismissal baffled himby Carlos Volcano19 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveBarcelona coach Ernesto Valverde admits Ousmane Dembele’s dismissal against Sevilla baffled him.Dembele was sent off late in Barcelona’s win for comments made to the referee just moments after Ronald Araujo was shown a straight red himself.It has been reported that the Frenchman said “very bad, you’re very bad” to the referee, which saw him given his marching orders.”I don’t know what he said,” Valverde said when asked for his opinion in his post-match press conference.”But I don’t think it was too long a sentence.”With the Araujo dismissal on his debut, it didn’t seem like a foul to me.”Then the Dembele one is a mystery.”Looking at the match as a whole, Valverde was understandably delighted to finish with such a comprehensive scoreline.”It was a complicated and important game for us,” he explained.”They’ve had a lot of chances, but this is what it is.”They left spaces and we had more punch, which proved key.” About the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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Gwitchin people ready to take on Trump over arctic drilling

first_img(Caribou in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in the Yukon. Photo: Luke Smith/APTN)Shirley McLeanAPTN NewsThe Gwitchin peoples in Yukon, Northwest Territories, and Alaska are rolling up their sleeves once again to fight for the protection of the Porcupine Caribou Herd against U.S. President Donald Trump’s attempts to reopen drilling in the Arctic.Since 1988, the Gwich’in Nation has successfully resisted multiple attempts by the U.S. Congress to open the Coastal Plain to drilling.But the Trump administration and the Alaskan congressional delegation have renewed their attempts to open it up for oil exploration.“We’re calling in our allies,” said Chief Bruce Charlie of the Vuntut Gwitchin government in Old Crow, Yukon. “These misguided plans from the Trump Administration and Congress put our ancient relationship with the Porcupine Caribou at risk for what amounts to a few months of American oil consumption,” said Charlie. “This cannot be justified and must be stopped.”(Old Crow, Yukon. Photo: Luke Smith/APTN)The herd’s population sits just under 200,000.It has gone up and down in size over time, but it has always been an important part of the ecology of the Western Arctic and the existence of the Gwitchin people.Earlier this month the US house of representatives passed a budget resolution that includes a push to open the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) on the Arctic coast of Alaska to drilling.With 10.4 billion barrels believed to be sitting underneath the refuge, the area is thought to be the largest onshore oil reserve in North America.It’s also the calving grounds for the Porcupine Caribou Herd – and part of president trump’s push to for American energy independence.Dana Tiyza-Tramm is a councillor for the Vuntut Gwitchin.The councillor said multiple studies have shown caribou are sensitive to development and with the plans to open up the refuge for seismic testing throws their future into question.And that the area is sacred to the Gwitchin Nation made up of 9,000 members – not only in Yukon but across the north in Alaska and the Northwest Territories.“At the end of the day we Gwitchin define ourselves of the land and the ANWR lands are our homelands,” said Tiyza-Tramm. “And we can liken that to the land as our bodies and the caribou as our bloodline and what is done to them is done to us”Lorraine Netro sits on the Gwitchin steering committee and advocacy group for the Gwitchin People.She said it’s critical for the nation to gather political support.“We need all of our leaders within the Gwitchin nation, within the Yukon, NWT, our national leaders to stand up and standup up to the plate and stand in unity with the Gwitchin people and let people in Washington DC know that this is unacceptable.”The Resolution instructs the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee to come up with $1-billion in savings over 10 years in order to fund Republican tax reform plans.Congress has the final say over whether to allow new drilling in the refuge.Dana Tiyza-Tramm said there is a number of moderate Republican senators who are supporting the Gwitchin view right now.And that they need 51 senior senators out of 100 to vote against the proposed budget that is expected to happen any day now.As of today, the nation has installed a public phone so community members in Old Crow can call US senators to make them aware that the Arctic National Wilderness Refuge is a sensitive area with high stakes for the Gwitchin.It is expected that any amendments to regulations to allow seismic testing would require a full-blown environmental assessment which could take 18 months or longer to conductWhich Tiyza-Tramm said gives the Gwithcin still time to lobby if the US Senate votes in favour to open the refuge to drilling.Contact Shirley here: smclean@aptn.calast_img read more

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First Nation wants inquiry into racism assaults linked to hydro development

first_imgThe Canadian PressA northern Manitoba First Nation is calling for a provincial inquiry into racism, discrimination, and violence linked to hydroelectric development on its territory.York Factory First Nation Chief Leroy Constant says people have suffered because of the Manitoba Hydro projects.He says women, in particular, have experienced ongoing trauma.A report released last month by the province’s Clean Environment Commission outlined discrimination and sexual abuse at the Crown utility’s work sites in the 1960s and 1970s.The report says there was also racial tension, environmental degradation and an end to the traditional way of life for some Indigenous people.Sustainable Development Minister Rochelle Squires has called the allegations in the commission’s report disturbing and said she is referring the issue to the RCMP.Constant says members of his >First Nation have struggled to have their voices heard and issues with hydro development continue to this day.news@aptn.ca@aptnnewslast_img read more

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Venezuela holds onto prized US refineries amid legal battle

first_imgCARACAS, Venezuela — Venezuela will hold onto its U.S.-based Citgo refineries, settling a lawsuit that threw ownership of the struggling country’s prized assets into peril.Court papers show that Venezuela on Friday began paying off $1.4 billion that a panel said was owed to the Canadian mining firm Crystallex, following a disputed takeover of the company by the late-President Hugo Chavez.To recoup its losses, Crystallex had targeted Citgo refineries, potentially forcing Venezuela to sell off its most valuable foreign asset.Papers filed in a Canadian court say Venezuela recently paid Crystallex $425 million, while agreeing to make good on the rest by 2021. That enables them to hold onto their refineries.Russ Dallen of Miami-based Caracas Capital Markets says the payment shows Venezuela’s changing tactics — from fighting creditors to striking deals.The Associated Presslast_img read more

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Ohio State baseball to host midweek clash with Cincinnati

OSU junior left fielder Ronnie Dawson lays down a bunt during a game against Morehead State at Bill Davis Stadium on April 13. OSU won 7-3. Credit: Muyao Shen | Assistant Photo EditorFresh off its first Big Ten series victory of the 2016 season over Rutgers last weekend, the Ohio State baseball team (23-12-1, 4-5-0) is set to host the Cincinnati Bearcats (18-19) on Tuesday in a midweek meeting between in-state foes. The two teams faced each other a season ago, when OSU claimed a 6-0 victory behind a strong outing from then-redshirt freshman Adam Niemeyer. OSU coach Greg Beals will try to duplicate that performance by again sending a rookie pitcher to the mound, this time being Ryan Feltner in a controlled start against a to-be-determined Bearcat.   The Scarlet and Gray, who are 14-2 at home this season, will be hoping to continue their dominance over visiting opponents with another win against the Bearcats. Scouting the BearcatsDespite losing three of its last five games, Cincinnati enters Tuesday’s game leading the American Athletic Conference. The Bearcats, however, are visiting with momentum behind them, as they won two of three games against conference foe Tulane over the weekend. Games outside of the Queen City have not been friendly for the Bearcats. In road or neutral contests, they have a combined travel record of 4-15. Cincinnati, statistically, is one of the worst hitting teams in all of Division I. Its team average of .239 ranks 267th of 295 teams. But the Bearcats have been able to produce some big runs courtesy of the long ball. Cincinnati has blasted 25 homers this season, good enough for third in the AAC. The Bearcats are led at the plate by the performance of redshirt sophomore infielder Connor McVey. The Mason, Ohio, native has been clawing away at the baseball with a .301 average, including a team-leading 10 doubles and 21 stolen bases. Cincinnati also has exceptional team speed along the base paths, having swiped 63 of 82 attempted bases to lead its conference. Buckeye bombsThe Buckeyes, in large part, have been powered by two things: controlled pitching and striking the long ball. OSU has already hit a Big Ten-leading 38 home runs, including a team-leading nine from newly converted first baseman Jacob Bosiokovic. The move of Bosiokovic, a redshirt junior, from the outfield has allowed for more versatility in the OSU lineup defensively and is aimed at increasing the production at the plate for the bottom of the lineup. With the lineup switch, senior second baseman L Grant Davis moves into a utility role, senior infielder Troy Kuhn takes over at second, and sophomore Tre’ Gantt takes over for Bosiokovic in right field. In total, OSU has four players with six or more homers, including junior center fielder Troy Montgomery and senior third baseman Nick Sergakis, who both have seven. In four games last week, the pair each tallied two homers, providing OSU with a much-needed spark to an offense that has been cooling down over recent weeks. Exceeding expectations Coming into this season, OSU’s pitching staff had several question marks surrounding the roles in the bullpen. Now, just past the halfway mark of the season, it would be safe to say the Buckeyes’ bullpen has performed well, outside of a disastrous two-blown-save series against Maryland. Redshirt sophomore closer Yianni Pavlopoulos is in a three-way tie for the lead in the Big Ten with eight saves, while relievers Daulton Mosbarger, Seth Kinker and Michael Horejsei all have ERAs south of 2.50. Perhaps most impressively, the Buckeye pitching staff leads the Big Ten with 296 punch-outs. On Tuesday, OSU will have to lean on its bullpen again, as Feltner will be on the hill on short rest after pitching the last three innings during Friday’s 7-4 loss to Rutgers.  The game against Cincinnati is set to begin at 6:35 p.m. read more

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Ohio State wrestling gears up for Big Ten and NCAA Championships

Ohio State wrestling coach Tom Ryan said he gets the sense that this season, his team is doing big things. “Despite the fact that we’ve got so many young people on the team, I think there’s great leadership and a great sense of this group leaving a legacy here,” Ryan said. Having started seven freshmen for most of the year, the No. 6 Buckeyes’ resume suggests the team has gone above and beyond the expectations of many. After storming out of the gate at 7-0, the Buckeyes dropped back-to-back road contests against Nebraska and then Minnesota. About two weeks later, the Buckeyes toppled then-No. 2 Iowa, 21-9, in their first win against the Hawkeyes since 1966. Some even called it their biggest dual win in school history. Just nine days after the Iowa match, defending national champion, Penn State, hammered OSU, 34-9, in State College, Pa. OSU then responded with wins against then-No. 12 Michigan and Michigan State to close the Big Ten regular season. While the mission of winning a Big Ten regular season championship was unsuccessful for OSU (11-3, 5-3 Big Ten), Ryan said there’s still a lot of wrestling left. “Men in this sport that have left a legacy shine in March,” he said. “And we’re still three weeks away from March.” What Ryan is referring to are the Big Ten and NCAA Championships, which begin in early March and last through much of the month. Before that, the Buckeyes’ attention is solely focused on this weekend when they will travel to Stillwater, Okla., for the Stillwater Regional of the NWCA/Cliff Keen National Duals. OSU, which drew the No. 3 seed in the region, is set to wrestle No. 6 seed Boise State on Feb. 12. “I think the big thing that Boise State presents for us is that they have a couple of really good individuals,” he said. Perhaps most importantly against Boise State, Ryan stressed how critical it was for 165-pound freshman Derek Garcia to wrestle his best heading into the postseason in order to hopefully qualify for the NCAA Tournament which is selective in what wrestlers it takes. “Every single match for Derek Garcia’s critical to make sure we bring ten (wrestlers) to the national tournament. Because I do believe he can do something there,” he said. OSU is at full strength with all of their starters rested and ready to go. At least, Ryan said, as much as they can be in mid-February of the season. The winner of OSU’s dual against Boise State wrestles No. 2 seed Nebraska, who handed the Buckeyes their first loss back on Jan. 6. One-hundred-eighty-four-pound redshirt junior C.J. Magrum said that while there will be no looking past Boise State, he’s excited at the prospect of a rematch. “We’re kind of upset we didn’t get the second seed (in the Stillwater region) but at the same time, we’ll never wrestle Nebraska as worse we did the first time we wrestled them,” he said. OSU lost, 18-16, as a result of bonus points in the first match up. “Lightning’s not going to strike twice,” Magrum said. “We’re pretty confident going into the match that we should take care of them.” One-hundred-thirty-three-pound redshirt freshman Logan Stieber agreed. “Last time we didn’t wrestle well, and they kind of kicked our butts,” he said. Ryan said he understands the challenge at hand. “We’re going to see two teams that, based on their season, you might say, should beat us,” he said. But that doesn’t stop him from liking the matchups each team presents. He still gets the sense this is a team that’s doing big things, he said. “This group wants to win it,” Ryan said. “We’ll see how bad they want to win it on Sunday.” read more

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Track and Field KarenDennis led Ohio State takes part in firstever Power

Coach Karen Dennis sits front and center during her teams celebration after her team won theBig Ten Championship on Saturday Feb. 24, 2018 at Spire Institute in Geneva, OH. Credit: Ethan Clewell | Lantern ReporterThere are only five men’s and women’s track and field programs in the Power Five led by women. This weekend in Los Angeles all five of those programs, including director of track and field and cross country Karen Dennis-led Ohio State, will compete in the Power 5 Trailblazer Challenge.Tennessee, Miami, USC, Ole Miss and Ohio State will compete in the meet.This is the first time a meet that has a woman as the dual-program director for each team competing.“It’s groundbreaking. But for me, I am hoping that it is an awaking so to speak for other programs to consider making women the primary coach,” Dennis said.Dennis has been a coach since 1977 and has seen the difficulties of women becoming coaches first-hand for decades. “I was insulted that men were expected to coach women, but I thought that women who knew the sport were equally or better than men,” Dennis said. “For me this has been a evolution of my career, where the sport has changed and I’ve been fortunate enough to be a part of that change.”During the indoor season, Dennis became the first woman to win the Big Ten Men’s Coach of the Year. The meet offers Ohio State a chance for redemption against high-profile national programs after a disappointing performance at the indoor NCAA indoor championship meet.Men’s previewOhio State’s 4×400-meter relay team will meet its toughest opponent on the track in USC. The Trojans broke the world record with a time of 3:00.77 during the NCAA indoor national championships. Early in the season, teams will test their rosters and split up their relay teams, which Ohio State did at the Black and Gold Challenge. Dennis said that won’t be the case this weekend, due to the meet being higher profile.“You don’t want to invite all of these people down here and have a watered-down meet,” Dennis said.One of the other major matchups will involve Ohio State sophomore Alexander Lomong in the 800-meter run. Lomong, Mississippi’s Waleed Suliman and USC’s Robert Ford are all within a second of each other’s personal-best times.Lomong said he has focused on running long distances in order to help his body endure the race pace for the length of 800 meters. Field events might be an opportunity for Ohio State to separate itself from the competition. Senior Cole Gorski is coming off a record-breaking pole vault performance last week and his strongest competition has a chance to be his teammate, junior Coty Cobb.Women’s previewSenior Maggie Barrie will match up against All-American talent in the 400-meter dash. USC’s Kendall Ellis won the indoor national championship two weeks ago. Freshman Aziza Ayoub, Miami’s Kayla Johnson and Ole Miss’s Maddie McHugh all have personal bests separated by fewer than two seconds.Junior Sade Olatoye will face Ole Miss’s Janeah Stewart in shot put. Stewart and Olatoye faced off several times during the indoor season. read more

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James Milners perfect response to Liverpools title battle angst

first_imgLiverpool midfielder James Milner believes they should be relishing being on top of the Premier League rather than dwelling on the threat from their rivals.Jurgen Klopp’s side have somewhat dropped off in form since the start of the new year with just two wins in five league outings.1-1 draws against both Leicester City and West Ham United have left Liverpool particularly vulnerable now with Manchester City just three points away from snatching top spot.The Citizens will have the opportunity to do that in tonight’s trip to Goodison Park to take on Liverpool’s Merseyside rivals Everton.But Milner believes Liverpool shouldn’t be worried over the pressure of being the league leaders at this stage of the campaign.“Concerned about being top of the league in February? No, I’m happy!” Milner told Liverpool Echo.“We’re clear at the top of the league in February. There is a long way to go, a lot of games, tough games. We have just got to keep going.“If someone said we’d be three points clear at this stage of the season you’d have taken it.“There were people saying at the start of the season that Man City are the best team the Premier League has ever seen and stuff like that, so just to be close to them is good for us.“Playing for relegation and livelihoods and people’s jobs, that’s pressure. Being at the top of the table, we should be enjoying it.”The former England international, who has won the Premier League twice at City, accepts that changes at the top of the table are likely.Harry Maguire, Manchester UnitedLiverpool legend Nicol slams Harry Maguire’s Man United form Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Steve Nicol believes Harry Maguire has made some “horrendous mistakes” recently, and has failed to find his best form since joining Manchester United.Therefore, Milner believes Liverpool should just try to enjoy their lead and remain focused on themselves rather than on their rivals.“We’ve got to keep going and try and enjoy it,” he added. “There’s nearly a third of the season to go, such a long way.“I’ve been fortunate enough to win titles, I’ve been unfortunate enough to get relegated as well. I’ve experienced it, and these are the times you should be enjoying.“It wouldn’t surprise me if the league lead changes hands a couple of times before the end of the season.“We’ve just got to take care of our business. The last couple of games, we haven’t played well but we’re still picking up points.“That’s the positive side, we’re not losing games. There’s plenty we can improve on which is nice to know.”The Reds will be back in action on Saturday at home to Bournemouth in the Premier League.A point gained. Thanks to the travelling support – let’s push on together 💪🏻🔴 #YNWA pic.twitter.com/NiTclhIT5V— James Milner (@JamesMilner) February 4, 2019last_img read more