December 7, 2019

Karnataka effect: RJD stakes claim to form government in Bihar, Congress in Goa

first_img| Photo Credit: Ranjeet Kumar  “We met the Governor and submitted a memorandum stating that we have support of 111 MLAs. The Governor heard our submission with patience and said he would think over it,” Mr Yadav told reporters outside Raj Bhawan after the meeting. A large number of RJD and Congress MLAs had gathered outside the Raj Bhawan but only few were called in to meet the Governor.In the 243-member Bihar Assembly RJD is the single-largest party with 80 MLAs, Congress has 27, the HAM(S) one and CPI-ML three while, ruling alliance partners JD(U) has 71 MLAs, the BJP 53, the Lok Janshakti Party and Rashtriya Lok Samata Party two MLAs each.Mr. Yadav said, “The point we’re trying to make is that there has to be one rule in the country…if the Karnataka Governor’s decision to invite the BJP as the single largest party was proper, then the same yardstick should be applied to Bihar also…RJD is not only single largest party but a single block of pre-poll alliance.” In a ripple effect of Karnataka Governor Vajubhai Vala’s decision to invite the BJP as the single largest party to form the government, Congress leaders in Goa and Manipur met their respective State Governors and staked claim to form the government as did Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Tejaswi Yadav in Bihar.Former Manipur Chief Minister Okram Ibobi Singh and senior Congress leaders met Assam Governor Jagdish Mukhi at the Raj Bhavan in Imphal. “We demanded dismissal of the BJP-led coalition government as we were denied a chance to form the government despite emerging as the single largest party with 28 seats (in the 2017 Assembly election),” Mr. Singh said after the meeting.Citing the Karnataka example, Mr. Singh said had the Congress been given a chance by Governor Najma Heptulla then, he could have proved the majority within a few days. “We can prove our majority now, if invited,” he claimed.In 2017, the Congress bagged 28 seats in the 60-member Manipur Assembly. The BJP won 21 seats but cobbled up a coalition with regional parties but needed “defectors” from the Congress to make the number. Of the 28 Congress MLAs, eight shifted loyalty to the BJP without resigning from their constituencies in what legal experts say is a violation of the Tenth Schedule.In GoaAfter meeting Goa Governor Mridula Sinha, Leader of the Opposition Chandrakant Kavlekar, who was accompanied by 13 party MLAs, said a representation had been submitted requesting the Governor to “right the past wrong” of inviting the BJP to form the government in March 2017, and now invite the 16-member Congress legislative party to form the government instead.The BJP had won 13 seats in the February 2017 state assembly election as against 17 won by the Congress, which had emerged as the single largest party in the 40-member house. The BJP staked the claim to power with two regional outfits and independent MLAs, and formed a coalition government after getting a prompt nod from Ms. Sinha.‘A principled stand’In Patna, Mr. Yadav, who is also Leader of Opposition in State Assembly, met Governor Satya Pal Malik, accompanied by leaders of the mahagathbandhan — the Congress, Hindustani Awam Morcha and CPI(ML), and staked claim to form government on the basis of the “principled stand taken by the Karnataka Governor”.center_img RJD leader Tejaswi Yadav addresses journalists after meeting the Governor in Raj Bhavan, Patna, on May 18, 2018.last_img read more

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Amid alliance speculations, Fadnavis calls on Uddhav

first_imgChief Minister Devendra Fadnavis held a meeting with Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray on Thursday evening to discuss the possibility of alliance in the Lok Sabha elections. Later, talking to reporters Mr. Fadnavis said that the talks were positive. “Today, I met Shiv Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray at his residence. We held discussion about our alliance in the polls and the talks were positive. The Sena has certain suggestions regarding issues of farmers and we are ready to accept those. The talks will continue,” Mr. Fadnavis said. This is for the first time in recent times that Mr. Fadnavis has publicly acknowledged meeting Mr. Thackeray for talks on seat sharing. The meeting comes on a day when Sena’s Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Raut made a statement about CM post being given to Sena, if Prime Minister’s post was to go to BJP. Hinting a possible climb down from its earlier position, Shiv Sena on Thursday said that allies should get the Chief Ministerial post in their respective states if a BJP-led NDA government is formed at the Centre after the upcoming Lok Sabha elections.Speaking to a news agency, Mr. Raut said on Thursday, “There is no change in the stand of Shiv Sena on fighting the Lok Sabha polls alone and that talk of an alliance with BJP is only media speculation.”Mr. Raut said if a National Democratic Alliance (NDA) government is formed in 2019, Shiv Sena, Akali Dal and other major allies will have a role. “All the allies of the NDA are strong in their states and if you (BJP) want to have an alliance with them at the Centre, the Chief Minister in that state should be from that ally,” he said.Mr. Raut said this is his party’s stand and not a condition. “We have already said that the next Chief Minister in Maharashtra will be from Shiv Sena and this has nothing to do with an alliance. If in future, there are discussions on an alliance we will want implementation of the 1995 formula as per which Shiv Sena will have the role of a big brother in Maharashtra whereas we will reciprocate similar support to BJP at the Centre,” he added.last_img read more

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Coach Topex: Pirates lack Lions’ championship class

first_imgCPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA The Pirates are the latest challengers to the throne of the Lions, whose iron-fisted grip of the league has thrown traditional powerhouses San Sebastian and Letran under the shade for most of the past decade.READ: Fernandez knows ‘underdog’ San Beda will come out big vs LyceumFEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“It’s obvious that they’re determined to win,” said Robinson, who was part of the television panel that called the Lions’ 76-71 win over the Stags in a knockout duel last Tuesday.“At the end of the day, they’re the stronger team and they have more experience than us. Their experience showed against San Sebastian and we know what we have to face. They have a good group of guys that are motivated to show that they are the defending champions.” John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding View comments Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netFor all the milestones that his team has achieved this season—an elimination round sweep and a first finals appearance, Lyceum coach Topex Robinson still doesn’t think the Pirates are the heavy favorites in the NCAA Season 93 championship series against defending champion San Beda starting Friday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.For one, Robinson said his team didn’t have the championship culture that the Red Lions had established over the past 11 seasons in the NCAA, where San Beda had lost just twice in the finals.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Read Next Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. The regular season results, however, point to the Pirates as the team to beat in the finals.They clobbered teams by double-digit margins in 13 of their 18 wins. And although they did come away with a couple of narrow wins against the Lions, the Pirates were in control for most of those two games.READ: Robinson admits San Beda ‘stronger, more experienced team’“Right now, Lyceum is the best team (in the league) because they beat us twice,” said San Beda coach Boyet Fernandez, on his second stint as Lions coach after steering the team to back-to-back crowns in 2013 and 2014. “We’re the underdogs in the series. But again, we’ll find a way to win.”The Lions are no strangers to these type of situations even in the midst of one of college basketball’s most dominant runs with Fernandez recalling the time San Beda overcame a San Sebastian team led by now PBA star Calvin Abueva.ADVERTISEMENT Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Lifesavers up even minus star import Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH “That time, San Sebastian was the favorite, but San Beda came and won so we might see history repeat itself,” Fernandez said. “For us, we’ll just take it one game at a time.”Interesting matchups abound in the finals with Lyceum star CJ Perez and San Beda’s Robert Bolick all eager to prove their worth in the NCAA’s biggest stage.“The excitement is there, but it’s a matter of channeling it to positivity,” said Robinson. “We know it’s our first time to be in this level and it’s really unchartered territory. We know that we got nothing to lose and we’re happy where we are.” Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games LATEST STORIESlast_img read more

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76ers climb to 6th in East, beat Bucks

first_imgKammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Khris Middleton had 23 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists for the Bucks in their second straight loss. They were without top scorer Giannis Antetokounmpo, who was sitting out the first of two games to rest a sore right knee.Fellow starter Malcolm Brogdon (family matter) also wasn’t available. Tony Snell (15 points) and Sterling Brown (14 points) moved into the lineup, and the Bucks rallied from 16 points down to tie it before fading in the fourth quarter.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutAntetokounmpo practiced Friday, but the Bucks announced Saturday morning that the two-time All-Star would be out until Friday against Brooklyn to “manage” his ailment. Knee pain also kept Antetokounmpo sidelined on Nov. 22 and Dec. 23.“Hopefully, after missing these two games, he doesn’t have to miss any more,” Bucks coach Jason Kidd said. Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting Read Next Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH TIP-INSBucks: Brogdon is expected back Monday. … Marshall Plumlee, signed to a two-way contact five days earlier, made an impact in his team debut. He had six points and six rebounds and started the fourth quarter … Milwaukee plays the Sixers three more times, including at Philadelphia on April 11 to end the regular season.76ers: Rookie G Markelle Fultz participated in shootaround as he tries to regain his shooting form following a right shoulder injury. The No. 1 overall pick has missed 38 straight games. … Simmons didn’t attempt a 3-pointer for the 12th time in 13 games. He’s 0 for 10 from long range. … With the game in hand, fans turned their attention to Sunday’s NFC championship game with several “Eagles” chants.UP NEXTBucks: Home vs. Phoenix on Monday night.76ers: At Memphis on Monday night. Back’s fine as Federer serves up warning to rivals Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Philadelphia was without its top two shooting guards. JJ Redick (cracked bone below his knee) is out at least a week and Jerryd Bayless (sore left wrist) didn’t dress.Luwawu-Cabarrot, a French guard in his second NBA season, stepped into the starting lineup and made 3 of 5 3-pointers. His 3 capped a 13-0 run early in the fourth as Philadelphia built a 97-82 lead.The Sixers showed good depth early. Nine players scored in the first quarter, and they built a 53-37 lead before halftime.After committing just three first-half turnovers, the Sixers threw it away 11 times in the third, and Middleton and Eric Bledsoe (14 points on 5-of-18 shooting) helped the Bucks rally to tie it.Embiid responded with a dunk and a block on Bledsoe and a three-point play to end the third and give the Sixers an 84-80 lead.ADVERTISEMENT NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers LATEST STORIES Giannis Antetokounmpo powers Bucks in bounce back win over Celtics PLAY LIST 02:29Giannis Antetokounmpo powers Bucks in bounce back win over Celtics00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: 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 City MOST READ View comments Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding PHILADELPHIA, PA -JANUARY 20: Joel Embiid #21 of the Philadelphia 76ers celebrates in front of John Henson #31 of the Milwaukee Bucks after scoring late in the fourth quarter at Wells Fargo Center on January 20, 2018 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Rob Carr/Getty Images/AFPPHILADELPHIA — Joel Embiid had 29 points and nine rebounds and the Philadelphia 76ers pulled away from the undermanned Milwaukee Bucks 116-94 on Saturday night for their seventh win in eight games.Ben Simmons added 16 points and nine assists, and Timothe Luwawu-Cabarrot added 16 points in a rare start as the Sixers (22-20) moved past Milwaukee (23-22) for sixth place in the Eastern Conference.ADVERTISEMENT Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PHlast_img read more

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Ajinkya Rahane creates Test record, takes 8 catches in a match

first_imgAjinkya Rahane may have failed with the bat in the first innings but has contributed to the team’s cause by holding on to eight catches in this Test match, which is a world record.Rahane reached the milestone when he held on to the catch of Rangana Herath in the slip off Amit Mishra’s bowling. This feat is unique in itself because it was achieved by a non-wicketkeeper.Also read: Ind vs SL, 1st Test Live, Chandimal solid as lead extends The middle-order batsman started off the day with a brilliant catch in the gully diving to his left to send back nightwatchman Dhammika Prasad. In the first innings he took three catches and in the second claimed five. Moreover, Rahane complimented Ashwin well and played a crucial role in helping to get his third Test 10-wicket haul.last_img read more

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Larry Nassar’s former boss arrested over nude pictures of female students

first_imgA Michigan State University official who oversaw a clinic that employed Larry Nassar was charged on Tuesday with sexually harassment and compiling nude student selfies on his work computer, in the first charges to spring from an investigation into how complaints against the disgraced former sports doctor were handled.William Strampel, who until December was dean of the College of Osteopathic Medicine, was also charged with failing to enforce or monitor protocols set for Nassar after a female patient complained of inappropriate sexual contact.The 70-year-old Strampel, who has been jailed, was scheduled for arraignment in the afternoon. His attorney, John Dakmak, declined to comment.The complaint, which alleges Strampel solicited nude photos from at least one female medical student, said he used his office to “harass, discriminate, demean, sexually proposition, and sexually assault female students in violation of his statutory duty as a public officer.” Topics Share on Pinterest Share on Facebook Since you’re here… Share on LinkedIn Support The Guardian Gymnastics Share on Twitter Read more Share on Messenger … we have a small favour to ask. More people, like you, are reading and supporting the Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism than ever before. And unlike many news organisations, we made the choice to keep our reporting open for all, regardless of where they live or what they can afford to pay.The Guardian will engage with the most critical issues of our time – from the escalating climate catastrophe to widespread inequality to the influence of big tech on our lives. At a time when factual information is a necessity, we believe that each of us, around the world, deserves access to accurate reporting with integrity at its heart.Our editorial independence means we set our own agenda and voice our own opinions. Guardian journalism is free from commercial and political bias and not influenced by billionaire owners or shareholders. This means we can give a voice to those less heard, explore where others turn away, and rigorously challenge those in power.We hope you will consider supporting us today. We need your support to keep delivering quality journalism that’s open and independent. Every reader contribution, however big or small, is so valuable. Support The Guardian from as little as $1 – and it only takes a minute. Thank you. Share via Email Share on WhatsApp news His computer contained approximately 50 photos of female genitalia, nude and semi-nude women, sex toys and pornography. “Many of these photos are of what appear to be ‘selfies’ of female MSU students, as evidence by the MSU clothing and piercings featured in multiple photos,” according to the complaint. He is also accused of grabbing students’ buttocks on the dance floor at the college’s annual ball and at a scholarship dinner. The maximum penalty for the charges ranges from one year in jail to five years in prison.Nassar pleaded guilty to molesting patients and possessing child pornography and is expected to spend the rest of his life in prison. Strampel took a leave of absence for medical reasons in December. He told police last year that he failed to follow up an order for Nassar in 2014 to have a third person present when providing treatment to “anything close to a sensitive area.” In letting Nassar resume seeing patients, he also said any skin-to-skin contact should be minimal and needed to be explained in detail.Nassar was fired in 2016 for violating the rule. More than 250 girls and women have sued Michigan State, Strampel and other current and former university officials, as well as USA Gymnastics where Nassar also worked.John Manly, a lawyer for many of the victims, said his clients were encouraged by the development. “It demonstrates that [the Michigan attorney general] is serious about investigating the systemic misconduct at MSU that led to the largest child sex abuse scandal in history and holding the responsible parties accountable,” he said.A Michigan State spokeswoman said the university would continue cooperating with any investigations and pointed to Engler’s past statements. “William Strampel did not act with the level of professionalism we expect from individuals who hold senior leadership positions, particularly in a position that involves student and patient safety,” Engler said last month. Michigan ‘I was molested by Dr Larry Nassar’: how the gymnastics sexual abuse scandal unfolded Reuse this contentlast_img read more

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Mesut Özil tops World Cup social media league

first_imgThe Observer Instagram Share on Messenger Share on Facebook Topics For many of the Premier League’s top stars, success at this year’s World Cup will be measured by what they do off the pitch as much as what they do on it. And the bad news for England’s players is that their performances are likely to fall far short compared to rivals.With an estimated global audience of 3.4 billion, the championship presents the perfect platform for the players to exploit their following on social media.Pitchside, a social media consultancy specialising in sports, has created a “Social Player Index” that ranks the 108 players from the Premier League’s 20 clubs playing at the World Cup. Drawn from 28 countries in the competition, including 21 of the 30 most followed stars, they have a combined reach of almost half a billion followers.Premier League’s most followed World Cup players1 Mesut Özil Arsenal and Germany2 Paul Pogba Manchester United and France3 Sergio Agüero Manchester City and Argentina4 Eden Hazard Chelsea and Belgium5 David de Gea Manchester United and Spain6 Mo Salah Liverpool and Egypt7 Willian Chelsea and Brazil8 Thibaut Courtois Chelsea and Belgium9 Kevin de Bruyne Manchester City and Belgium10 Marouane Fellaini Manchester United and BelgiumJamie Doward Sergio Agüero Share via Email Share on LinkedIn Paul Pogbacenter_img Social media Mesut Ozil Eden Hazard World Cup 2018 Reuse this content Share on Twitter Share on Pinterest Share on WhatsApplast_img read more

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Law Passed to Facilitate FID Membership in Egmont Group

first_imgAn Act to facilitate the Financial Investigations Division (FID) membership in the Egmont Group was passed in the House of Representatives on May 28.The Egmont Group provides a forum for Financial Intelligence Units (FIUs) globally, to improve cooperation in the fight against money laundering and terrorism financing; and to foster the implementation of domestic programmes in this regard.In his remarks, Minister of Finance and Planning, Dr. the Hon. Peter Phillips, who piloted the Act in the House of Representatives on Tuesday, May 28, explained that following the passage of the Financial Investigative Act in 2010, the Division submitted an application for membership to the Egmont Group through its sponsors, Canada, and the Bahamas.He added that the application for membership to the Egmont group was subsequently denied as they were not in compliance with certain Egmont standards.“Therefore the Bill seeks to amend the Act to ensure compliance since we consider it of importance for the international community that Jamaica be part of the effort to, not only prevent, reduce or eliminate money laundering, but also to combine our intelligence on global financial transactions which may facilitate terrorism or other criminal acts,” Dr. Phillips said.Section 2 of the Act has been amended to clarify the definition of competent authority, making it an entity authorised by the Minister to monitor the compliance of business in the regulated sector, with the requirements imposed by law for the prevention of financial crimes.In addition Section 12 (7) of the Act was also amended after the Egmont group called into question the independence of the Financial Investigations Division.“Membership in the Egmont Group was one of those issues that needed to be addressed in order to end the close monitoring of the Jamaica anti money laundering combating the financing of terrorism standards by the Caribbean Financial Action Task Force,” Dr. Phillips said.“So these amendments, simple as they are, carry us a far way to becoming a full fledged member of the international community of financial intelligence agencies and investigative agencies that will help make Jamaica not only a place of investment, but a more secure environment,” he added.Leader of Opposition Business in the House, Delroy Chuck, noted that the Opposition had no objection with the legislation.“There can be no doubt that it’s an important part to bring Jamaica within the international community of financial bodies, so that when persons do business with Jamaica they don’t have to be looking behind their backs,” Mr. Chuck said.The Bill will be sent to the Senate for approval.Contact: Latonya Lintonlast_img read more

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Idris Elba Partners With African Soccer Stars To Fight Ebola

first_imgThe CDC Foundation, actor Idris Elba and a global team of African soccer stars, international health and aid organizations today announced the launch of Africa United, a global health communications campaign aimed at preventing the spread of Ebola in West Africa.Africa United will leverage campaign partners and celebrities to provide critical education and resources for the people of West Africa. A central campaign public service announcement focuses on building trust for and showing solidarity with healthcare workers battling Ebola on the front lines of West Africa.The 2014 Ebola epidemic is the largest in history, infecting nearly 16,000 people with more than 5,600 deaths to date. While the spread of Ebola is a threat to people, health systems and economies around the globe, West African communities in particular are being crippled by the disease as a result of already-strained healthcare systems, mistrust of healthcare workers and fear and stigmatization of those infected.“For me the battle against Ebola is a personal one. To see those amazing countries in West Africa where my father grew up and my parents married being ravaged by this disease is painful and horrific,” said Idris Elba, actor and the creative force behind the development of the campaign public service announcements. “Imagine having to sit down and tell your family that you were going to fight this disease. That conversation is happening across West Africa and around the world every day. I am in awe of the bravery of these health workers, who put their lives at risk day in and out to stop the spread of this terrible disease. My hope is that, in some small way, through the development of these PSAs and the creation of the Africa United campaign, we can ensure that these workers get the support they need and that health messages are delivered to people on the ground to help them in their fight. #wevegotyourback. We will support you.”Elba has rallied a group of soccer stars, including Yaya Touré (Ivorian), Carlton Cole (Nigerian and Sierra Leonean descent), Kei Kamara (Sierra Leone-born), Patrick Viera (Senegal-born), Fabrice Muamba (Democratic Republic of Congo-born) and Andros Townsend, to share this message of solidarity with healthcare workers in a new public service announcement titled We’ve Got Your Back. In the video, the players acknowledge that, although fans regard them as heroes, healthcare workers tackling Ebola are the true heroes. Each player wears the name of a healthcare worker on his back as a symbol of respect for “the world’s most important team.” The PSA will be featured during the Official Draw for the 2015 Orange Africa Cup of Nations in Malabo, Equatorial Guinea, on December 3, through a partnership with Africa United partner, the Confederation of African Football (CAF).In another campaign video titled West Africa vs. Ebola, Elba stars as a soccer coach giving a rousing and educational team talk to West Africa in preparation for its “life or death” game against Ebola. Elba explains the symptoms of Ebola and tactics for how to beat the virus, which includes spreading the word and working as a team.The PSAs and other multimedia educational materials — including video and radio messages, billboards and posters — will be available on the campaign website, www.WeAreAfricaUnited.org, in English, French, Krio and additional local languages. The educational materials are designed to be adapted and distributed by Africa United partners such as ministries of health, health clinics, government and non-governmental organizations, media and sports organizations. These may include organizations such as Africa 24, SuperSport, ONE, UNICEF and Voice of America. CDC and UNICEF staff working in the affected countries contributed to the development and distribution of messages, and Africa United will continue to develop and provide critical communication tools to CDC and partners in real time based on changing needs in country.“Private and public partnerships like Africa United are critical to aligning organizations fighting Ebola and to ensuring quick, effective responses to changing circumstances and needs,” said Charles Stokes, president and CEO of the CDC Foundation. “The CDC Foundation remains committed to advancing response efforts in West Africa through public education and resources for use on the front lines of the Ebola battle.”To further leverage the power of soccer to reach Africans, Africa United will distribute FIFA and CAF’s ‘11 Against Ebola’ messages through Africa United partners. “Stopping Ebola is an emergency, and CAF is committed to using the powerful platform of football in service of our brothers in West Africa who are suffering from Ebola,” said Mr. Issa Hayatou, President of CAF.“I wanted to support this campaign for so many reasons. I could not sit back without doing something to help fight Ebola. It is important we don’t treat this as something we just discuss with work colleagues or simply follow on the news for updates – instead our focus should be to do something,” said Yaya Touré, Ivorian professional football (soccer) player. “I also wanted to get involved with this campaign as it pays tribute to the many, many African heroes who are in the villages, towns and cities using their skills, resourcefulness and intelligence to battle Ebola. Those people on the front line are often forgotten. African mothers, fathers, brothers and sisters are doing everything they can to fight Ebola – we have to support them. #WeveGotYourBack”Visit www.WeAreAfricaUnited.org to join the campaign by sharing educational materials or donating to support the life-saving work taking place in West Africa.Source:PR Newswirelast_img read more

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First lady vows to fight cyberbullying despite skeptics

first_imgWASHINGTON – Pushing back against her critics, Melania Trump said Tuesday she’s committed to fighting cyberbullying despite the knocks she’s gotten for taking on the issue when her husband regularly uses Twitter to berate his foes and call them names.“I am well aware that people are skeptical of me discussing this topic,” the first lady said. “I have been criticized for my commitment to tackling this issue, and I know that will continue. But it will not stop me from doing what I know is right. I am here with one goal: helping children and our next generation.”Mrs. Trump made her comments as she convened executives from major online and social media companies at the White House to discuss cyberbullying and internet safety. The meeting came more than a year after she announced that cyberbullying would be her cause if Trump were elected president.The choice was immediately assailed, but Mrs. Trump said she won’t back down.She said she gets many letters from children who have been bullied or feel threatened on social media. She acknowledged that the issue has been studied for years, and told the executives she wants to hear “what you have learned, what has been accomplished, and what progress still needs to be made.”“I believe together we can make a real difference in encouraging positive behaviours on social media,” she added.Amazon, Snap, Facebook, Google, Twitter and Microsoft sent representatives, as did the Internet Association and the Family Online Safety Institute.All the major technology companies have strict policies prohibiting harassment and other bullying behaviour on their services, but primarily rely on users to report abuses and weed them out. They try to clearly spell out the kinds of remarks and other posts that won’t be tolerated in special sections such as one Facebook, the largest online social network, has set up. Instagram, a popular service among kids and young adults for sharing photos and videos, provides links to the U.S. government’s anti-bullying site and tips from a cyberbullying research centre on one of its help pages.But the efforts so far have fallen short, leading to rampant abuses that even some of the companies acknowledge have driven away or tormented portions of their audience.It got so bad on Twitter, which has 68 million U.S. users, that the San Francisco company vowed last fall to crack down on hateful tweets. Among other things, Twitter adopted new policies aimed at protecting women who unknowingly or unwillingly had nude pictures of themselves distributed online — a common bullying tactic.Yik Yak, another messaging app once popular among high school and college students, shut down last year partly because schools banned it following complaints about bullying and harassment.Online bullying takes many shapes, but some of the most common tactics include posting embarrassing or salacious photos, making demeaning or cruel remarks under a photo or in a general post about someone, and sharing screenshots of what at least one person thought was a private text.Harassment is widespread and extends beyond teenagers. A Pew Research Center poll last year found 41 per cent of U.S. adults believed they had been harassed online.The popularity and volume of content on major social media sites presents a huge challenge in policing what is being shared. Facebook, for instance, has 2.1 billion worldwide users who collectively share billions of posts on their pages daily. More than 300 hours of video is uploaded to Google’s YouTube site every minute.The companies are also constantly struggling to balance the desire to prevent harassment and other abuses with a commitment to freedom of expression.In some cases, they see harassment and still look the other way. For instance, some of President Trump’s more vitriolic tweets have openly mocked and denigrated people, prompting calls for Twitter to shut down his account and ban him from its service. But Twitter has declined, maintaining the news value of the president’s tweets eclipses complaints about him being a bully.There is no federal law that applies to bullying. State laws vary, ranging from requiring public schools to have bullying policies to requiring anonymous reporting systems, said Sameer Hinduja, co-director of the Cyberbullying Research Center and professor of criminology at Florida Atlantic University. The federal government can best help by giving schools more tools and money to provide programs, Hinduja said.Mrs. Trump announced in a speech near the end of the 2016 presidential campaign that her priority as first lady would be to fight cyberbullying.___AP Business Writer Michael Liedtke in San Francisco contributed to this report.___Follow Darlene Superville on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/dsupervilleaplast_img read more

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INTERVIEWS Top UN peacekeeping logistical officials discuss threats to blue helmets

Among his goals is to work in a “more efficient, more effective and more responsible manner,” Mr. Khare told the UN News Centre. That means using a greater focus on technology and innovation, and working in closer partnership with local, regional and international groups to plan and share information. Greater responsibility to partners, hosts and future generations“National ownership, consent of parties and impartiality. Those are the guiding principles of UN Peacekeeping and all the peacekeepers follow them,” noted Mr. Khare. He emphasized the word “responsibility” throughout the interview. He noted, for example, that his Department has the “responsibility to ensure that the mandates are actually met,” referring to the official order agreed upon by the Security Council on what the Mission will aim to do in a country. That responsibility extends to the countries that are providing the financial and human resources to the Mission.The senior UN official also discussed the responsibility to the host country, referring also to the ethical conduct of peacekeepers.“Wherever the peacekeepers are deployed the normal social contract has broken down,” he said. “In those parts where the conflict is rife, where the chances of corruption, the chances of fraud, the chances of sexual violence and conflict are all high, we must demonstrate so that those countries can, through our example partially, come back to normalcy.” Mr. Khare, who is a former peacekeeper, also spoke about the responsibility to future generation to not use natural resources in excess and use as many renewable sources of energy as possible.“We must respect the principle of doing no harm and that includes the necessity of looking at environment promotion and protection while we are deployed,” he said. ‘Few contaminating the image of many’A threat to UN peacekeeping also comes from some UN peacekeepers allegedly sexually exploiting and abusing the people who they are meant to protect. “The totally unacceptable behavior of a few contaminates the image and the courage of the vast, vast majority of the colleagues,” Mr. Ladsous said. “It’s also true to say that the countries that contribute the troops and police have never given to the UN the power to investigate or prosecute,” he continued. The UN now has a policy of naming the countries that are cited in allegations of sexual abuse and exploitation. Among the topics that have been discussed to penalize such actions is for the alleged perpetrator to face a court martial in the country where the purported act occurred, as opposed to him being repatriated back to his home country.Another idea is for criminal sanctions against the home country of the peacekeeper, with the aim of increasing checks on who is allowed to wear a UN uniform and his actions during that time. Malaysian women peacekeepers of the UN Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) at a medal ceremony in Kawkaba, south Lebanon. UN Photo/Pasqual Gorriz UNAMID peacekeepers from Rwanda ready to go on patrol at the Zam Zam UNAMID base, North Darfur, Sudan. Photo: UNAMID/Albert Gonzalez Farran Yacine Mar Diop, and children, Coumba and Cheikh Diagne, share stories about their husband, father. Credit: United NationsThe 2016 commemoration marked the eighth straight year in which the UN has honoured more than 100 peacekeepers who lost their lives in the previous year in the line of duty.“They are sacrificing their lives in the effort to bring peace and security to those who have otherwise been deprived of it,” said Atul Khare, the Under-Secretary-General for Field Support, whose Department works closely with the Department of Peacekeeping.Mr. Khare is ultimately responsible for ensuring that the staff in UN Missions have the required food, water, camps, vehicles, fuel and other logistics so that they can do their jobs. In extreme circumstances like deliberate targeting by jihadists and traffickers to more complicated assignments, today’s United Nations peacekeepers need courage, a high degree of professionalism and resilience, the head of the so-called ‘blue helmets’ today said.“Being a peacekeeper has always been about devoting a period of time of one’s life to the noble ideals of peace and security. But it has taken a very specific dimension in recent years in view of the very dangerous situations in which we’ve been asked to step in,” Hervé Ladsous, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations, told the UN News Centre ahead of the International Day of UN Peacekeepers, marked annually on 29 May. Just days before the interivew, five Chadian peacekeepers were killed and three others wounded in an attack in northern Mali. The attack by Islamic extremists, condemned by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon as “heinous,” was also denounced by the Security Council.This year’s theme is “Honouring our Heroes,” a nod to the 125,000 military, police and civilian staff who serve in 16 peacekeeping operations around the world. The deployment is the largest in UN history. UN Honours our Heroes on Peacekeeping Day. Credit: United NationsAt least 37 UN peacekeepers have been killed in the last four months. Since the start of UN peacekeeping operations in 1948, nearly 3,500 military, police and civilian personnel working under the UN flag have been killed, including 129 in 2015 alone. Those 129 individuals were honoured last week with Dag Hammarskjöld Medals. In a special ceremony, the family of Captain Mbaye Diagne, whose bravery in Rwanda saved hundreds of people from genocide, was presented with an inaugural medal for exceptional courage in his name. United Nations peacekeepers in Menaka, Mali. Photo: MINUSMA/Marco Dormino The UN Secretariat is expediting guidance that will set out factors relevant to the decision to repatriate a military or formed police unit when there is credible evidence of widespread and systemic sexual exploitation and abuse.The guidance will also detail the criteria for determining that a troop-contributing country has not taken appropriate steps to investigate allegations, or that a police or troop-contributing country has not held perpetrators accountable or informed the Secretary-General of the progress of investigations and follow-up action“No State can allow a peacekeeper to turn into a predator,” Mr. Khare said. The main focus, both Mr. Ladsous and Mr. Khare stressed, needs to be on providing immediate assistance to the victim – medical and psychological – to help her or him overcome the drama. A trust fund to support the provision of services to victims is operational, and that Member States have been requested to consider making contributions. These efforts are overseen by Jane Holl Lute, the Special Coordinator on improving the UN response to sexual exploitation and abuse.@media only screen and (min-width: 760px), screen9 {#PhotoHolder3 #PhotoCrop { max-height: 770px; /* sets max-height value for all standards-compliant browsers */ width: 134%; margin-left:-161px; margin-top: -630px;}#story-headline{ font-size: 4.5em; line-height: 1.2em; color:#fff; position: relative; top: 100px; margin-left:11em; text-shadow: 10px 10px 10px rgba(0,0,0,0.8); width:35%;}}#sidebar {display:none;} div#story-content .span8 {width:100% !important} #fullstory p { font-size: 14px; line-height: 1.8em;}#myCarousel2 h4,p { color:#666; text-justify:distribute; line-height:1.9em; } blockquote { font-size: 1.2em; line-height: 1.5em; font-style:italic;}.videoWrapper { position: relative; padding-bottom: 56.25%; /* 16:9 */ padding-top: 1em; height: 0; margin-bottom:1em;}.videoWrapper iframe { position: absolute; top: 0; left: 0; width: 100%; height: 100%;} read more

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Browned toast and crispy roast potatoes a potential cancer risk

first_imgEdwina Currie questioned why acrylamide was being “prioritised” over “tangible issues”.“If they think this is a big issue but there are gaps in their knowledge, they should fund more research into it as an urgent priority,” she said.A spokesperson for the potato product manufacturer McCain said the company was complying with the Food Drink Europe “acrylamide toolbox”.Steve Wearne, director of policy at the FSA, said: “We are not saying people should worry about the occasional meal … this is about managing risk over a lifetime.”Anything you can do to reduce your exposure will reduce your lifetime risk.”People might, for example, think ‘I like my roast potatoes crispy’, but they will just decide to have them less often.” The Government has been accused of “massively overreacting” by telling people not to eat crispy roast potatoes or browned toast despite there being no scientific proof of a link to cancer.Experts said the Food Standards Agency’s (FSA) new campaign, which warns people against cooking starchy foods at high temperatures for long periods, risks undermining support for “real” public health priorities like tackling obesity.Launched on Monday, the official guidance aims to raise awareness of acrylamide, a chemical which forms in some foods when they are cooked in temperatures hotter than 120°C. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. We are not saying people should worry about the occasional meal … this is about managing risk over a lifetimeSteve Wearne, director of policy at the FSA Sir David Spiegelhalter, professor of the public understanding of risk at Cambridge University, said the campaign was inappropriate.“I’m always ambivalent about public health campaigns that are not based on some pretty firm quantitative evidence,” he said.“Many things in life may increase risk, but it’s the size of the risk that makes it important.”Acrylamide forms due to a chemical reaction between certain sugars and an amino acid in the food when fried, roasted, baked, grilled or toasted, rather than boiling, steaming or microwaving.Chips and crisps are foods thought to contain the most amount of acrylamide because of their relatively greater surface area in proportion to weight.The FSA is also instructing people not to keep bread in the toaster beyond a golden colour, as this also increases acrylamide.Potatoes must also not be stored in the fridge as this too raises levels of the chemical when cooked. The row broke as it emerged major manufacturers of potato products including McCain have been quietly working with the FSA to change cooking instructions on packs in an attempt to reduce acrylamide levels.Chairman at the British Potato Trade Association, David Burks, said people’s acrylamide intake is influenced more by the variety of potato they eat than the way it is cooked.“Most supermarket bought potatoes are low in acrylamide anyway, so changing how they are cooked will make little difference.”He added that the Government campaign would be more effective at reducing acrylamide intake if it focused on cutting back on crisps. Chris Snowdon, head of lifestyle economics at the Institute of Economic Affairs, said the FSA advice was an example of “mission creep” from the Government agency.“They should be dealing with real safety issues like the handful of restaurants who are putting out genuinely dangerous food,” he said.“This sort of thing undermines public faith in scientific advice and terrifies people.“People just don’t know what to eat anymore because they’re not being given clear advice.”Former Conservative health minister Edwina Currie told The Daily Telegraph: “I think people will be puzzled when they see this campaign, as the Government appears to have launched it before doing all the research.”center_img Browned toast This sort of thing undermines public faith in scientific advice and terrifies peopleChris Snowdon, Institute for Economic Affairs Browned toast also increases acrylamide, says the FSACredit:Nick Ansell It is also not known whether even a diet high in browned foods such as well-done roast potatoes could expose a person to enough of the chemical to risk triggering the cancer.According to the FSA, people should not longer “fluff” their potatoes before roasting them, as this increases the surface area and maximises the brown crispiness which for most people is the main point of eating them in this style.The new FSA guidance also states people should roast potatoes and vegetables in a preheated oven for approximately 45 minutes, turning every 15 minutes to avoid over browning.Using the slogan “go for gold”, it also warned that people should set a timer for 25 minutes to ensure they catch them before they overcook. It states that people can lower their risk of cancer by avoiding over-browning roast potatoes, chips, root vegetables as well as cereal-based foods.But the advice is based on experiments on mice, rather than any studies showing that acrylamide causes cancer in people.last_img read more

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Sandvik and Downer join forces on service solutions for mining materials handling

first_imgSandvik Mining Systems and Downer EDI have announced a memorandum of agreement (MOA) that will see them offering high-level field service and maintenance solutions for mining materials handling projects around Australia. Under the MOA, these two leading mining services providers say they “will work together to offer the highest levels of field service and maintenance solutions for mining materials handling projects.” The MOA will enable Sandvik to engage Downer to carry out any maintenance work on Sandvik Mining Systems equipment operating on its customer sites, ensuring equipment is safely up and running in the shortest possible time to meet production targets. “We are delighted to be working with Downer to support our customers with a more extensive field service offering,” said Wayne Slight, Global Operations and Maintenance Manager, Sandvik Mining Systems. “This agreement will offer enormous benefits to our customers’ productivity and operations around Australia.”Slight said that with Sandvik’s 150 year legacy, Sandvik had long been recognised as an OEM that provided leading-edge products designed to the highest quality.“However to better service our customers we needed to provide a more extensive field service offering – and this agreement with Downer will enable us to do this,” he said. Paul Gilbert, Bids & Contracts Manager for Downer, said the MOA was a “best-fit” solution for both organisations and their customers. “Downer has an extensive history in the mining and construction industry, and we’ve developed a strong level of product knowledge of Sandvik Mining Systems, and the necessary expertise to maintain them correctly. “This agreement will allow us to carry out full servicing, repairs and maintenance on Sandvik Mining Systems, including working with on-site service crews, to ensure the equipment continues to operate safely, optimally and reliably,” Gilbert said.last_img read more

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Dirty Sergio Ramos adds one more victim to his hitlist

first_imgDuring the first half against Viktoria Plzen, defender Sergio Ramos added one more victim to his hit-list of players that suffer his relentless elbow aggressions.As we have already pointed out before, Real Madrid defender Sergio Ramos is unhinged and needs to be disciplined from his violent behavior.UEFA and the referee committee needs to start taking notes with this player because he is truly one of the most violent ones in world football, he just keeps going after his markers with those elbows and he keeps repeating himself because no one has taken the necessary measures with his erratic behavior.We had already seen how much damage can Sergio Ramos make when he wants, he took the liberty to injure both Mohamed Salah and Loris Karius during the Champions League final from last season and nobody from UEFA said a single thing.This season in La Liga, Ramos has already hit other opponents and the officials from the Spanish competition also don’t seem to care because he is a Real Madrid player and he obviously gets a pass that players from other clubs don’t.The latest incident has taken place in the Czech Republic during Real Madrid’s 5-0 victory against Viktoria Plzen, Ramos got away with it again and he didn’t even get booked.⚠ ¡Durísimo codazo de #SergioRamos! ⚠y ni amarilla se llevó… pic.twitter.com/1oVfMO4qHB— MedioTiempo (@mediotiempo) November 7, 2018The worst part of this was that unlike the final against Liverpool, Real Madrid didn’t need the dirty football that Sergio Ramos plays when the club is not having their best day.Many might say that this wasn’t intentional, but when a certain action keeps repeating itself, it simply can’t be considered as an accident.Sergio Ramos knows very well what he is doing and where he places his forearm when he tries to protect the ball or get ahead in the position as he struggles with a rival player.It’s all about that nasty habit of always placing his arm in a very dangerous area without thinking about the consequence of his actions, this time there was a victim that unfortunately got a fractured nose and bled all over the grass as soon as he received the nasty hit from Sergio Ramos.Viktoria Plzen defender Milan Havel was the unfortunate soul who suffered Sergio Ramos’ wrath this time, and the Spanish defender acknowledged the incident after the match but he confirmed that he would never go after any player’s livelihood.¡OJO! “¿El CODAZO? Es una ACCIÓN FORTUITA. Nunca voy a HACER DAÑO a un compañero. Le he puesto un MENSAJE a Havel” @SergioRamos en DIRECTO en #ChiringuitoRamos! pic.twitter.com/VRE9StmreQJose Mourinho, Lionel MessiMourinho: “Lionel Messi made me a better coach” Andrew Smyth – September 14, 2019 Jose Mourinho believes the experience of going up against Barcelona superstar Lionel Messi at Real Madrid made him a greater coach.— El Chiringuito TV (@elchiringuitotv) November 7, 2018“I obviously never go after any of my peers with the intention to hurt them,” said Ramos after the match via Diario AS.“I have spoken with the player actually, I went to the locker room looking for him but he wasn’t there because he was undergoing tests to determine the damage on his nose but I did send messages asking for his well being.”“It’s clear that I did hit him but I never intended to hurt him, the problem is that the nose is very problematic and even I have suffered when it bleeds so much.”“When you have been in a club for so long and you are the Real Madrid and the National Team captain you tend to be under the spotlight. I believe that I’ve managed critics quite well and I will never change my ways.”“I hope I can be in this club for a long time despite a headache that we may cause a lot of people. With the Salah incident, it’s true that sometimes you can be afraid of the consequences of what you do, I really didn’t think about hitting anyone before that problem but it’s very different now.”“The truth is that I won’t change, mainly because I have never played with the intention of hurting any of my peers.”“I have fallen injured many times, I also have broken my nose before, I still remember the nasty tackle I received during the Spain-England match in Real Betis’ stadium and nobody said anything,” he concluded.¿Cuántas agresiones más le van a permitir a Sergio Ramos? ¡¡Esto es una vergüenza!! pic.twitter.com/lzmTU5Nr17— Zona_Blaugrana (@Zona_Blaugrana) November 7, 2018What do you think about Sergio Ramos’ latest violent moment with a rival this Wednesday? Please share your opinion in the comment section down below.last_img read more

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The first words of Muriel on his return to Italy

first_imgColombian forward Luis Muriel is back in the Italian Lega Serie A, and as soon as he landed he spoke about how he feels now with Fiorentina.Colombian forward Luis Muriel has returned to the Italian Lega Serie A.The 27-year-old already knows the league, having played there with Udinese, Lecce, and Sampdoria.But he spent more than one year and a half with Sevilla in the Spanish La Liga.And now he signed with Fiorentina on a one-year loan with an option to buy him.Cristiano Ronaldo, JuventusSerie A Betting: Match-day 3 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Considering there is a number of perfect starts so early in the Serie A season, as well as a few surprisingly not-so perfect ones….“I am really happy to be here,” he told Gianluca Di Marzio.“I gave my word to [director of football Pantaleo] Corvino.”“I can’t wait to get on the field,” he said with a smile.“It is nice to return to Italy and it is a league that I know well.”last_img read more

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Turks and Caicos company to computerize Work Permit process announces Ministry

first_img TCI Company Contracted for Work Permit upgrade Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Related Items:#DataworxSystemsLtd, #magneticmedianews, #workpermitprocesscomputerized Recommended for you Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppTurks and Caicos, March 31, 2017 – Providenciales – Announced today by the Ministry of Border Control and Employment; a plan agreed to since 2016 and now finally just about ready for roll out and the Minister and Permanent Secretary both say it will revolutionize speed and ease of service at the department.Work Permits are evolving to an electronically generated and more secure document.  Minister and Deputy Premier, Sean Astwood said:  “It is my government’s intention to demonstrate our full commitment to improving service delivery in all areas of my Ministry.   This new system will address some of the longstanding complaints that the business community express on a regular basis, more notably, the lack of feedback, lengthy delays in the process, and the absence of identification for family members who are permitted to reside in the Islands with permit holders.”Dataworx Systems Ltd is responsible for installing the software which will now require electronic data entry, be able to give electronic approvals and instantly communicate decisions.  Outgoing PS, Clara Gardiner said there will be public engagement, with the business sector in particular to inform more directly about what this change will mean.Gardiner also noted that this launch of the work permit database is the first of a multi-faceted IT modernization that is taking place across all departments with the Ministry of Border Control and Employment.  There will also be a go live feature once the system is completely set up. #MagneticMediaNews#workpermitprocesscomputerized#DataworxSystemsLtdlast_img read more

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Ed Sheeran Makes Billboard Chart History With Shape Of You

first_imgNews GRAMMY winner’s smash hit ties for most weeks in the Top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100Renée FabianGRAMMYs Aug 22, 2017 – 11:09 am GRAMMY winner Ed Sheeran is making Billboard chart history with his smash hit, “Shape Of You.”On Aug. 21 “Shape Of You” hit the 32-week mark in the Top 10 on the Billboard Hot 100, which is now tied for first place for most weeks in the Top 10 in the chart’s history. GRAMMY-winning dance/electronic duo the Chainsmokers also hold the first place title with “Closer,” featuring Halsey, spending 32 weeks in the Top 10, as does GRAMMY winner LeAnn Rimes for 1997’s “How Do I Live.”A close follow-up with 31 weeks in the Top 10 is Mark Ronson and Bruno Mars’ Record Of The Year GRAMMY-winning hit “Uptown Funk.” Santana’s “Smooth,” featuring Rob Thomas — also a Record Of The Year winner — holds the next spot with 30 weeks in the Top 10.The other record-holding Top 10 hits include LMFAO featuring Lauren Bennett and GoonRock’s 2011 “Party Rock Anthem” (29 weeks), Jewel’s 1997 hit “Foolish Games”/”You Were Meant for Me” (28 weeks), Mars’ current hit “That’s What I Like (27 weeks), and Savage Garden’s 1998 track “Truly Madly Deeply” (26 weeks).Notably, Mars’ “That’s What I Like” could move up in the ranks of Top 10 winners, as it still sits at No. 8, while Sheeran’s “Shape Of You” could pull away as the longest-running Top 10 hit in Billboard Hot 100 history with just another week in the Top 10. It’s currently at No. 9.Did Ed Sheeran’s Carpool Karaoke Break The Internet?Read more Twitter Facebook Email Ed Sheeran: “Shape Of You” Makes Chart History ed-sheeran-makes-billboard-chart-history-shape-you Ed Sheeran Makes Billboard Chart History With “Shape Of You” last_img read more

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Sitka keeps Alaska Bulk Water afloat with 6th contract extension

first_imgThough not a single drop of raw water has been exported, the Sitka Assembly is offering Alaska Bulk Water Incorporated another chance to deliver on their promises. At the company’s request, the Sitka Assembly on Tuesday (10-27-15) agreed to extend their contract for the sixth time. (Emily Kwong/KCAW photo)For nearly a decade, Alaska Bulk Water Incorporated has been setting up shop in Sitka – at the site of the city’s once pulp mill. The former bottling company is trying to send raw water to customers around the world, from drought stricken California to beer manufacturers in Mexico.Not a single drop has been exported so far, but the Sitka Assembly is offering the company another chance to deliver on their promises. At the company’s request, the Sitka Assembly on Tuesday (10-27-15) agreed to extend their contract for the sixth time.With this extension, Alaska Bulk will have 36 more months to export Sitka’s most abundant natural resource. The company, formally called True Alaska Bottling, drew up a purchase agreement with the city in 2006. As the venture slowly took shape, the company requested – and was awarded – five deadline extensions. And on Tuesday (10-27-15), Terry Trapp, the CEO of Alaska Bulk Water, asked the Assembly for yet another grace period.“Moving water from Alaska to other parts of the world sounds easy. But it isn’t,” Trapp said before the Assembly. “We’ve spent nine years in a learning curve, in understanding the things that we have to do in order to make this happen.”And a lot of the grunt work, at least on the supply side, has happened in the last three years. Alaska Bulk spent $1.5 million on a new water station on the tidelands of the Gary Paxton Industrial Park. The company has also bought 12,000 feet of floating pipeline, purchased a tidelands lease to allow ships into Silver Bay, and installed a dual mooring buoy system for anchoring those ships, which are too large to dock.Over the years, Alaska Bulk has also paid the city $1.35 million dollars in non-refundable credits to hold on to the contract. With this latest extension, the company is shelling out another million.Assembly member Matthew Hunter said that swayed his vote three years ago, and clinches his vote now.“We’re looking at another million dollars we get, whether you ship water or not. That’s a lot of pressure on you. You’re already $1.3 million, plus your infrastructure and all the other stuff for marketing. It’s got to be a big investment, so I trust that your goal here is to ship water and to pay us for it. So, sounds good. Right now it’s pouring over the dam, so it’s not doing us any good.”Hunter said the worst case scenario was that Alaska Bulk asked for another extension in three years. Best case scenario? In three years, water business is booming.Assembly member Bob Potrzuski was more skeptical. He thought it wasn’t prudent to lock out competitors. With the contract amendment, Alaska Bulk will have access to 92 percent of Sitka’s commercial water and plans to sell it for one cent a gallon.“Personally I would like to see this contract for significantly less water,” Potrzuski said. “I would get rid of the whole idea of exclusivity and I would give others the opportunity and see what they could do with Sitka’s water.”Trapp responded by saying that there wasn’t enough space in Silver Bay for multiple companies to build their own loading stations, and that when it comes to marketing water, customers prefer to see one salesman.“You have one product to sell. That’s water. You can’t differentiate it. It’s bulk water,” Trapp said. “If you introduce competition, it’s going to wind up in a competitive battle and a downward pressure on price. We’re holding the line at  a penny a gallon, as to what we have to pay the city. And I know that other people would like to come in here and offer you less and promise you they can deliver the whole world. And that’s just not reality.”The Assembly seemed convinced, throwing their weight behind the company in the hope they will literally deliver. Trapp said he’ll be shifting gears these next three years to focus on the demand side of bulk water. He claims the company has potential customers in Mexico, the Middle East, China, and South America. Alaska Bulk also has a corporate office in Seattle and is marketing directly to Southern California.last_img read more

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OnePlus to invest Rs 1000 crore in Hyderabad RD facility

first_imgOnePlus 7 reviewIBTimes India/Sami KhanOpening its first R&D centre in India on Monday, Chinese smartphone maker OnePlus said it plans to invest Rs 1,000 crore in their facility in Hyderabad over the next three years, making it the company’s biggest such centre globally.”In three years, we plan to grow the new R&D centre in Hyderabad into our biggest globally,” said OnePlus Founder and CEO Pete Lau, while discussing the company’s plans in the country.”We plan to re-focus our R&D efforts on a large scale and drive innovations in India for the global product, especially on the software side with special emphasis on Artificial Intelligence, 5G and IoT,” he added.The OnePlus R&D centre will house three labs — camera lab, communications and networking labs and automation labs that will focus heavily on camera development, 5G testing and software, with focus on AI and performance testing.Overall, the facility will focus on five areas including network, global carrier customisation, OxygenOS native apps, global product development, software innovation and finally, testing.With regard to software and network, the centre will specifically work on the development of India-specific OxygenOS features, including OnePlus applications, design and development, and drive the 5G enablement for regions like India, EU and UK.The centre will also contribute to nurturing and giving opportunities to fresh talent, with the company’s ongoing campus hiring programme at a number of institutes, including the Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi and Indian Institute of Technology-Mumbai, initiated last year, OnePlus said.last_img read more

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3 Bangladeshis killed in Malaysia

first_imgAt least three Bangladeshi construction workers who have been working in Malaysia died on Monday, as lift of an under-construction site fell on them at Johor Bahru Forest City in Malaysia, reports UNB.The deceased are Tariqul Islam Torik, 32, son of Aynal Haque of Dhannokhola village in Benapole, Azmin Hossain, 26, son of Abu Taleb of Shaymolgasi village in Sharsha, and Salauddin, 42, son of Nurul Haque of Podeulia village in Jhikargacha of Jashore.Relatives of the deceased said a lift from 32th floor of a 50-storey under-construction building of TOIC Company fell on the trio killing them on the spot.Sharsha Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Pulok Kumar Mandal said they are trying to bring back the bodies as soon as possible.last_img read more

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