Leadership change underway in Zimbabwe after resignation of President Robert Mugabe

first_imgA portrait of Robert Mugabe in Harare, Zimbabwe.Nov. 22 — A factional struggle inside the ruling Zimbabwe African National Union Patriotic Front (ZANU-PF) party has created the conditions for the Nov. 21 resignation of longtime leader President Robert Gabriel Mugabe.Through a project lasting just eight days and entitled “Operation Restore Legacy,” the president was removed from his leadership positions as first secretary of the party as well as head of state of the Republic of Zimbabwe.The removal of the first secretary and president appeared on the surface to have been the outcome of divisions within ZANU-PF, in which rival elements surrounding former Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa, on the one side, and First Lady Grace Mugabe, on the other, reached an impasse stemming from irreconcilable differences. President Mugabe was in the concluding months of his present term of office, scheduled to expire in mid-2018.President Mugabe had joined the national liberation movement in his country at a young age while working as an educator and youth leader in that former settler colonial outpost that the British called Rhodesia. Then, during the late 1950s and early 1960s, he lived, worked and studied in the West African state of Ghana, which was then the fountainhead of Pan-Africanism under the prime minister and eventual president, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah.After being imprisoned by the British for a decade in the 1960s and early 1970s, Mugabe relocated to Tanzania and Mozambique to work full time as a leader of ZANU. In 1979, he played a pioneering role, alongside the Zimbabwe African People’s Union Patriotic Front (ZAPU-PF), headed by former Vice President Joshua Nkomo, in negotiations for the Lancaster House agreement that paved the way towards nonracial, democratic elections in Southern Rhodesia in April 1980. The elections brought Mugabe to power as prime minister through a coalition government that lasted five years. The initial government included the remnants of the settler colonialists, headed by former Prime Minister Ian Smith. By 1985, Zimbabwe had become a republic with ZANU-PF as the leading political party. In 1987, ZANU and ZAPU merged to form a unitary ruling party.Recent divisions within ZANU-PF came to a head after the termination of Vice President Emmerson Mnangagwa in early November. Mnangagwa was relieved of his duties after an incident in Bulawayo when First Lady Grace Mugabe was booed while speaking before a youth interface rally. These actions taken by the president’s office were said to have been in response to a plot to overthrow Mugabe by a faction in the party led by Mnangagwa.In addition to the sacking of Mnangagwa, reports were circulated that at least 100 other party officials were being examined for possible expulsion from both the organization and government. On Nov. 13, Zimbabwe Defense Forces (ZDF) Cmdr. Gen. Constantino Chiwenga held a press conference along with 90 other military officers at which he threatened intervention if the purges did not cease.Tanks move into streets of HarareThis military press conference was not covered by the state-run Herald newspaper or other ZANU-PF controlled media agencies. The following day, Nov. 14, social media and foreign news bureaus began to report on irregular tank movements in the capital of Harare. Several hours after sundown, stories began to emerge claiming that the Zimbabwe Defense Forces (ZDF) had seized the national Zimbabwe Broadcasting Corporation (ZBC) television station in preparation for a statement to the country. Rumors were rife throughout Zimbabwe, across Africa and the world that a military coup was underway inside the country.Later on in the early morning hours of 4 a.m. Zimbabwe time on Nov. 15, Maj. Gen. S.B. Moyo went on television saying that there had not been a military coup. He said that President Mugabe remained head of state and that security for the leader and his family was guaranteed. Moyo noted that the ZDF was only targeting “criminals” surrounding the president in order to prevent a further deterioration of the social situation, which could become violent.Several hours later, President Jacob Zuma of the neighboring Republic of South Africa spoke with Mugabe on the telephone. Zuma relayed in an interview over the South African Broadcasting Corporation that President Mugabe had said he was confined to his residence in the capital. He also told Zuma that no harm had been done to him or his family.Zuma is currently the chair of the regional 15-member Southern African Development Community. The following day, Nov. 16, Zuma deployed South African Minister of Defense Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula to sit in on mediation talks between Mugabe and the military. Photographs of the meeting at the State House in Harare were published on the website of the Zimbabwe Herald.Reports on Nov. 17 showed Mugabe presiding over a graduation ceremony at Zimbabwe Open University. Nonetheless, by Nov. 19, the international media sent out dispatches saying the ZANU-PF Central Committee had voted to recall the president from leadership and consequently as head of state. These same reports also emphasized that First Lady Grace Mugabe was being expelled from the party.Party and war veterans call for Mugabe’s removal In these same articles, it was said that Mugabe had until Nov. 20 to step down from office. In an address to the nation and world on Nov. 19, the president acknowledged the factional conflict within the ZANU-PF party. However, he did not resign and, alluding to the upcoming special congress of the party, said he would preside over it as first secretary.In an earlier press conference on Nov. 15, after Moyo’s television statement and the eventual broadcast of Chiwenga’s remarks, the Zimbabwe National Liberation War Veterans Association had said they supported the actions taken by the military leadership and would hold a demonstration on Nov. 18 in Harare. Spokespersons for the group also accused leading ZANU-PF and government officials associated with the party faction aligned with First Lady Grace Mugabe of being criminals and even U.S. Central Intelligence Agency operatives.After the deadline set by the ZANU-PF Central Committee passed on Nov. 20, party members in Parliament threatened impeachment resolutions. On Nov. 21, Sen. Monica Mutsvangwa of Manicaland Province accused the president of several constitutional violations.The impeachment resolution read by Mutsvangwa said in part: “President Mugabe is old and he needs to be hand held. As such, he is no longer fit for office. … The President has abrogated his constitutional mandate to his wife who makes public utterances on issues of government like the appointing and dismissal of government ministers and senior civil servants. This motion is moved in terms of Section 97 (1) which provides for the removal of the President or Vice President from office. The charges are (a) serious misconduct; (b) failure to obey, uphold or defend this Constitution; (c) willful violation of this Constitution; or (d) inability to perform the functions of the office because of physical or mental incapacity.”Later on, debate on the impeachment resolution was terminated after House Speaker Jacob Mudenda read out a letter, said to have been from Mugabe, tendering his resignation. International media outlets showed scenes of jubilation for several hours in the streets of Harare. The Zimbabwe Herald later published the resignation letter, along with reports that Vice President Phelekezela Mphoko would be acting president until Mnangagwa could be sworn in on Nov. 24.International implications of ‘Operation Restore Legacy’Judging from the response of the British Broadcasting Corporation, the government in London was delighted with the removal of Mugabe from the leadership of ZANU-PF and the Zimbabwe state. However, the former colonial power was quick to advise the new government in Harare on how it should proceed.British Foreign Minister Boris Johnson said in a Twitter post that he did not regret Mugabe’s downfall, calling the resignation “a moment of hope for the people of Zimbabwe.” This echoed the remarks of British Prime Minister Theresa May, who said that the sudden removal of Mugabe would “forge a new path free of the oppression that characterized his rule. In recent days we have seen the desire of the Zimbabwean people for free and fair elections and the opportunity to rebuild the country’s economy under a legitimate government.” (Al-Jazeera, Nov. 21)A BBC article arrogantly inquired on Nov. 22: “So, will Emmerson Mnangagwa be able to take Zimbabwe’s economy off life support and at least start to put it on the road to recovery? Analysts are very skeptical that a quick solution is even feasible. The euphoria that has gripped the nation has certainly raised hopes that the future will be brighter, but if that improved sentiment is to deliver economic dividends, the government needs to make some drastic reforms. In 2009, Mr. Mugabe signed the Indigenization and Economic Empowerment Act (IEEA) into law, which aimed to place 51percent of companies into the hands of Black Zimbabweans.”The IEEA was a response to the domination over Zimbabwe’s economy by British settlers and foreign corporations. A land redistribution program enacted in 2000 had set off even deeper international sanctions against Harare because the ZANU-PF government sought to give the land back to its rightful owners — the African people, who had been victimized by the onslaught of British imperialism in the late 19th century.Relating to the role of the U.S. government in the recent developments in Zimbabwe, the Voice of America (VOA) acknowledged in a report published on Nov. 21 that the State Department has been conducting what it described as “behind the scenes talks” with officials of the ZANU-PF government and Western-backed opposition forces inside the country.The article outlines some of the preconditions Washington set down for lifting sanctions on this southern African state, which has relied on the Republic of South Africa, the regional Southern African Development Community (SADC), the Republic of Mozambique, the People’s Republic of China and other fraternal states in order to stave off an already dire economic situation imposed by imperialism.Nike Ching of the VOA writes: “The way for Washington to lift sanctions is for Harare to carry out the due process, to respect human rights, and to give the opposition a genuine opportunity to form a government, said [Donald] Yamamoto [U.S. undersecretary for African affairs]. ‘What we don’t want is a manipulation by the government or by the ruling ZANU-PF party — holding rush elections, not taking into consideration a lot of the reform issues that the opposition wants to implement; also, not giving political space for the Zimbabwe people for them to express what they want to see in a new government,’ he said. U.S. Ambassador to Zimbabwe Harry Thomas has been meeting with officials from the ZANU-PF party and the opposition party behind the scenes to try and help push the political process forward.”Both the SADC and the African Union (AU) have expressed concerns over events in Zimbabwe emanating from “Operation Restore Legacy.” Zimbabwe under Mugabe had been an ideological and political base for Pan-Africanism and anti-imperialism on the continent.The above-mentioned report in Al-Jazeera also says: “Alpha Conde, president of Guinea and African Union chief, said it is ‘a shame’ Mugabe ‘has to leave through the back door.’ He added, however, that he was ‘very pleased’ with Mugabe’s decision to resign, noting that the AU had warned against a coup in Zimbabwe. Hailing Mugabe’s role in Zimbabwe’s fight for independence, Conde called Mugabe ‘an African hero.’ ‘Mugabe will never be forgotten, he was a great fighter,’ he was quoted as saying by Guinean media.”One opposition media agency, Bulawayo 24, published an unsubstantiated report on Nov. 16 that neighboring Zambian President Edgar Lungu was willing to militarily intervene in Zimbabwe and place his troops under Mugabe’s command. Western-backed entities emerged on the streets of Harare during the demonstrations on Nov. 18, carrying signs attacking both the AU and SADC.Critical issues for Zimbabwe’s futureAt least four important aspects of ZANU-PF’s domestic and foreign policy will be significant in the days and weeks to come in order to assess the Mnangagwa government’s direction.The land reform program, popularly referred to as “the Third Chimurenga,” has been a cornerstone of domestic policy since 2000. Will the land redistribution project be maintained, moderated or reversed?Secondly, the Indigenization policy is important for all post-colonial states in Africa, due to the dominance of foreign capital over the national and regional economies. Neocolonialism has failed to provide genuine independence, sustainable growth and development across the continent.Another major question is whether Zimbabwe can maintain its commitment to regional integration and industrialization, both within SADC and the AU. Mugabe served as chair of the AU in 2015, advancing the cause of economic integration and independence from Western capitalist states. Just this year, the Zimbabwean president presented a $1 million fundraising check to the AU, setting an example for individual state commitment to the continental body.Finally, Pentagon military involvement in Africa has grown substantially over the last decade with the formation of the U.S. Africa Command (Africom). The Mugabe government kept Africom out of Zimbabwe.The presence of Africom in Somalia, Niger, Mali, Nigeria and other AU member-states has not resulted in greater security and social stability. Quite the opposite has occurred, with burgeoning instability, economic crises and population displacement.Ultimately, it is up to the Zimbabwean people themselves to chart a future course. Despite the apparent errors of the recent period, the legacy of Robert Mugabe and ZANU-PF remains a sterling example of national liberation, Pan-Africanism and struggle against imperialism throughout the world.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thislast_img read more

Niger, Bayelsa Win 20th Milo Basketball Championship

first_imgNiger, Bayelsa Win 20th Milo Basketball Championship Father O’Connell Science College Minna, Niger State and St. Jude Girls Secondary School, Amarata, Bayelsa State, have emerged champions of the 20th edition of the Milo Secondary School, Basketball Championships in the male and female categories respectively after the grand finale which held at the indoor sports hall of the National Stadium in Lagos, penultimate week.Last year, Government Secondary School, Minna won the 19th edition of the championship for the male category. The school returned to the 20th edition as defending champions and carted away with the first prize position but with a new name of Father O’ Connell Science College Minna.The boys from Niger state defeated their counterparts from Gen. Muritala Muhammed College, Adamawa state, 60 – 59 to lift the trophy. The fiercely contested match had spectators on the edge of their seats as the game went down to the wire with just a point between the two teams. The game was tied in the second and third quarter with 28 – 28 and 41 – 41 respectively.Unlike the male category, St. Jude Girls Secondary School, Amarata, Bayelsa state outclassed the girls from Yejide Girls Grammar School, Ibadan Oyo 47 – 31 to retain the title in the female category. The Bayelsa girls have won the trophy back to back for the past 5 years, taking the trophy home in 2012, 2013, 2015, 2017 and 2018.Speaking at the event, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Nestle Nigeria, Mauricio Alarcon, expressed his delight to be part of the 20th edition of the Nestle Milo Basketball Championship. He stated that Nestle believes in helping to improve livelihoods of individuals in the communities where the company operates.“As we commemorate the 20th anniversary of Nestle Milo Basketball Championship, we celebrate the alumni who today play in the Nigerian National Team, in European Leagues, the National Basketball Association (NBA) and Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA). Some of them are here today and we celebrate them,” Mr. Alarcon said.He further applauded the passion and professionalism of the participants as part of what inspires Nestle to invest in grassroots sports development in line with the company’s purpose.“We will continue to work alongside our partners, the Ministries of Sports, Youth Development and Education in various states, the Nigerian Schools Sports Federation, the National Collegiate Sports Foundation and the Nigeria Basketball Federation to promote youth participation in sports,” Mr. Alarcon inforShare this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img read more

Sports Briefs

first_imgAussie players want to limit day-night Tests SYDNEY (AP): Cricket Australia’s plan to stage two day-night Tests next season hit another hitch yesterday when the players’ association sought a limit of one. The initial schedule proposed that the third Test between Australia and South Africa in November at Adelaide – the venue for the only previous pink-ball Test – and the series-opener against Pakistan in Brisbane in December be day-night matches. South African players and officials have so far resisted the idea, although Pakistan have committed to playing a day-night match. “The feedback we are receiving from our playing group is that there still remain concerns over day-night Tests,” Australian Cricketers’ Association chief executive Alistair Nicholson said. “While there is acknowledgement that this format may grow the game, at this stage, the players would prefer to only play one day-night Test in 2016-17.” Williamson confirmed as NZ Test captain WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP): Leading batsman Kane Williamson has been confirmed as New Zealand’s 29th Test cricket captain. The 25-year-old Williamson has already captained New Zealand in 34 one-day or Twenty20 Internationals and will now succeed Brendon McCullum as captain in all three formats. New Zealand Cricket chief executive David White said Williamson “has been a leader within the team for a long time and has already shown himself to be an extremely capable captain. He is respected by his peers and the wider cricket community for his professional approach both on and off the field and has a superb cricket brain.” Williamson said he had learnt a lot from McCullum and “the culture that he and Mike (Hesson) have cultivated has been a huge part of this team’s success in recent times”. Ronaldo, Benzema to miss match MADRID (AP): Real Madrid forwards Cristiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema will miss today’s league match as they try to recover from injuries in time to face Manchester City in the return leg of their Champions League semi-final. Coach Zinedine Zidane said that neither of his top two scorers was fit for the trip to Real Sociedad, where Madrid need a win to realistically remain in the Spanish league title race. Madrid trail leaders Barcelona and second-place AtlÈtico Madrid by one point, with three matches to go. Madrid host City on Wednesday after the two sides drew 0-0 in the first leg, where Madrid clearly missed Ronaldo’s spark in attack and where Benzema played only the first half. “I am worried because each time you have a player injured it is difficult,” Zidane said yesterday. “Now, the most important thing is that they completely recover because we cannot take risks with Cristiano and Karim.”last_img read more

Meet the women who fought the Knysna fires

first_imgIn June this year, devastating fires laid waste to the Western Cape, particularly in the towns of Knysna and neighbouring Plettenberg Bay, where homes were destroyed and residents were displaced. All South Africans responded to the disaster with urgent assistance and much-needed moral support. Meet three brave women who were at the forefront of the firefighting/ relief efforts.Huge fires wreaked havoc along the Garden Route of the Western Cape, particularly in the town of Knysna, in June 2017. Thanks to community leaders, emergency workers and other volunteers, the people affected by the disaster are able to rebuild their lives. President Jacob Zuma visited the area on 15 June 2017. (Image: South African Government Flickr)CD AndersonThe Knysna fires were devastating. Hectares of forest and fynbos were destroyed, while hundreds of homes in the town itself were gutted. Over five days at the beginning of June this year, almost a thousand firefighters, emergency workers and community leaders battled to save the town. Seven people lost their lives, but in the true spirit of ubuntu, South Africans around the country sent aid and assistance to the area, to help residents rebuild their lives.Three remarkable women were at the forefront of efforts, all heroes who responded with courage and compassion in the aftermath. These are their stories.(Left to right) Candace Myers, Knysna community leader, Cwayita Runeli, SANParks ranger and Marlene Boyce, Director of Planning, Knysna Municipality. (Image: Marie Claire SA magazine)Candace Myers, Knysna community leaderA lifelong resident of the area, Candace Myers has seen her fair share of fires in the highly volatile natural environment, but the June fires were something different. She told Marie Claire magazine: “It was like another planet… [over] five days, I’d experienced emotions I haven’t had in 50 years of my life.”Myers acted as a co-ordinator between ground forces and the town council’s disaster management team. “There [have] always [been] fires and we always know that somehow these things are taken care of… but sitting in the ops room with the disaster team that Wednesday afternoon, I felt absolute fear in the pit of my stomach. This fire was out of control and we didn’t have enough firemen and expertise. Our town was in flames,” she said.She co-ordinated communications with rescue workers, making sure the teams could fight the fires on all fronts. “[When cell phone reception] went down and we didn’t have communication with our family or anyone else,” she said, “I suddenly felt sort of alone… but we just had to hold out hope that somehow the people… were getting the help they needed. We spent the whole night helping wherever we could.”Myers also helped the relief work as the fires raged and residents were evacuated. She saw firsthand how devastating the fires were, but also how the community came together to help each other: “Members of the public were helping evacuate residents, everyday heroes pulling together and saving each other.”Cwayita Runeli, SANParks rangerCwayita Runeli is a South African National Parks (SANParks) ranger with firefighting training, and was one of only two female SANParks rangers in the thick of the action during the Knysna fires. There are a number of important nature reserves in the area, which is rich in fauna and flora (including volatile fynbos), and it was important that SANParks did everything in its power to minimise the damage.“I feel scared every time I fight fires,” Runeli told Marie Claire. “Anything can happen.” Though used to seeing out-of-control bush fires, Knysna was a shock to her. “When we were sent to Brenton On Sea (a coastal hamlet outside Knysna), it was my first time in such a huge fire. I’d never seen anything like it.” The fire itself was an ocean, she said, “that’s how the flames moved through the fynbos. Those plants hadn’t burned in over 15 years… even the sound of the fire was like a rumbling ocean. The crashing waves. The sky was dark, the smoke everywhere.”Duty however, was foremost on her mind. “I told myself [that] I have to save these lives. I knew exactly what to do… I know about the fire. I [had] to help them.” And she had something to prove.“People say that ladies can’t fight the fires. But I know that I can do anything the men can do. There is nothing that can stop me. People used to say that my body is too small, I’m too thin – all those things. But I told them that it doesn’t matter what [my] body is like – if [I] did the training, [I] can do the job. If you tell yourself that you can do it, you can. And I did.”While the devastation was immense, Runeli is confident that SANParks did its best to save what it could and is now dedicated to reviving this important natural ecosystem to its former glory.Marlene Boyce, Director of Planning, Knysna MunicipalityAs the Knysna fires raged, South Africans around the country – and indeed the world – did not just stand back and watch. Thousands of donations of food, clothing and other necessities flooded into the town, to be distributed to those affected by the disaster. Marlene Boyce, the director of planning and development in the Knysna Municipality, was in charge of co-ordinating the distribution, making sure the needs of the community were met.In addition, her planning department also compiled vital data needed to begin recovery from the fires and rebuild the area. It’s a job that continues long after the last flames have been put out.The future of the town and its people were foremost on her mind, even in the midst of the confusion brought on by the disaster. “[While] the first night was about rallying our municipal team and communities together to save lives… I couldn’t keep the future impacts out of my mind,” Boyce told Marie Claire.Responsible for spatial, environmental and economic development, Boyce and her team had to assess the damage and begin drawing up a recovery plan: “I had a good idea of what the actual impact would be. Large sections of mature commercial timber plantations were destroyed – what of those employed by the industry? And our tourism industry? All of those people would need assistance. Only after the worst of the fire did my real job start.”Even when her own house was affected, she still had to keep her mind on the important job at hand. “[The community’s] hospitality shown to me… left me feeling inspired about my job ahead. Like many people, I know we have a lot to look forward to, with possibilities to change our town for the better.”Part of Boyce’s role now is to look at new ways to approach nature conservation and community protection. While a national tragedy, the fires were also an opportunity to find alternative means to stimulate growth in the community, create employment and boost the tourism industry.“Knysna has an indomitable spirit,” Boyce said “[We] don’t live in a hopeless town. It is a community where people instantly pull themselves up and put their best foot forward. If there’s one message I think has come out of this, it’s that Knysna cannot be defeated. Like our fynbos, we are ready to flourish after this fire.”Source: Marie Claire, News24Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

New program to verify Ohio high school students’ expertise in agriculture

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest A new industry-recognized credentialing system will verify Ohio high school students’ expertise in specific areas of agriculture as they work toward their diplomas.The Ohio AgriBusiness Association has announced it will provide qualifying secondary students an approved, industry-recognized credential. Once approved by the Ohio Department of Education, this credential may be paired with a workforce readiness score through WorkKeys, a job skills assessment system measuring real-world skills, as a pathway to graduation for high school students.The new program will verify students’ expertise in the areas of agriculture, agribusiness and production systems.“As part of our efforts to meet future workforce demands in agribusiness, we are excited about the opportunities this new program provides for students pursuing agricultural careers,” said Chris Henney, OABA president and CEO. “OABA is proud to support students enrolled in agricultural education and FFA chapters across the state.”To be eligible for the program, a student must be enrolled in a career-technical agricultural program and complete three of the following courses, where they are engaged in learning and applying technical skills in foundational agricultural concepts:Agriculture, food and natural resourcesAnimal and plant scienceAgronomic systemsMechanical principlesLivestock selection, nutrition and management.Students are also required to complete a course in business management for agricultural and environmental systems or global economics and marketing of food. These upper-level courses test students’ knowledge of global agriculture marketing and business principles applied in agribusiness.Supervised Agricultural Experiences (SAE) — students’ out-of-school agriculture projects — are also integral in attaining the new OABA credential. To be considered, a student’s SAE must be an entrepreneurial, placement, or research-driven project pertaining to the agriculture industry. The student must document at least 500 hours of work on their project and identify the Ohio Agricultural and Environmental Systems Career Field Technical Content Standards achieved through their SAE.For more information about the Ohio AgriBusiness Association credential, contact Margo Long at 614-326-7520 or [email protected]last_img read more

Ind vs Eng: Injured Zaheer out of England tour; RP Singh gets call

first_imgIndia’s floundering campaign in the ongoing series against England suffered another massive blow on Sunday as pace spearhead Zaheer Khan was ruled out of the remainder of the tour after failing to recover from a hamstring strain and an ankle injury.”Zaheer Khan is suffering from a recurrent right hamstring strain and a right ankle impingement. He will require a surgery for his ankle, followed by intensive rehabilitation for both the ankle and hamstring,” the BCCI said in a statement.”He will need at least 14-16 weeks to recover completely. He will therefore not be able to participate in the ongoing Test series and subsequent Twenty20 International and ODI series against England,” it added.Medium pacer R P Singh, whose last Test appearance for India was in 2008 against South Africa, has been called to replace Zaheer in the Test, ODI and the Twenty20 squads.The limited overs series starts on August 31 with the one off T20 match.”The All-India Senior Selection Committee has picked R P Singh as his replacement in the Indian squads for the Test series, and the T20 International and ODI series. R P Singh will join the team at the earliest,” the BCCI said.The 25-year-old R P has been out of favour for quite a while and his last ODI appearance was in 2009 against Pakistan in the Champions Trophy.Zaheer, who walked off the pitch following a hamstring strain on the opening day of the first cricket Test at Lord’s on July 21, was expected to be fit for the August 10-14 match at Birmingham.advertisementHe played in the just-concluded two-day practice match against Northamptonshire to test his fitness. The 32-year-old opened the Indian attack but bowled only three overs, conceding 24 runs before walking off the field, raising a question mark over his fitness.Zaheer’s injury setback comes close on the heels of off-spinner Harbhajan Singh and batsman Yuvraj Singh being ruled out due to injuries in what is turning out to be a disastrous tour for India.On the brighter side openers Virender Sehwag, who missed the first two Tests due to a shoulder injury, and Gautam Gambhir are expected to be part of the line-up for the third match.The world number one Test side is trailing 0-2 in the four-match series.- With PTI inputslast_img read more

TOUCH-E-TALK WANTS TO RECOGNISE OUR VOLUNTEERS

first_imgThe ATA online newsletter Touch-e-Talk would like to create a `Volunteer of the Month’ story that will run regularly to acknowledge volunteers within the sport. In order to do this we are asking for nominations of volunteers in your area who do an outstanding job. This is a great chance to recognise the tireless work done by our volunteers in Touch. Volunteers are the backbone of any sport and without them the game of Touch as we know it just wouldn’t exist. Please send your nominations via email to [email protected] or [email protected] Please include the name of the nominated volunteer along with some background information, why you think they should be `Volunteer of the Month’, their contact details (preferably an email address) and if you have one, a photo. Thank you for your assistance. Lisa and Rachel `Touch-e-Talk’ editorslast_img

CMU Receives PM Medal of Appreciation

first_img Speaking to JIS News following the presentation ceremony, President, CMU, Professor Fritz Pinnock, described the institution as an “agile university” that responds to the needs of the nation and the region. Regarded as the premier institution for tertiary maritime and logistics education in the region, the Caribbean Maritime University (CMU) is focused on changing the higher-education landscape, while certifying students who are ready for the 21st century workforce. The CMU, which acquired university status under a year ago, was among 65 institutions and persons honoured with the Prime Minister Jamaica 55 Commemorative Medal of Appreciation for contribution to nation building, recently. Story Highlights Regarded as the premier institution for tertiary maritime and logistics education in the region, the Caribbean Maritime University (CMU) is focused on changing the higher-education landscape, while certifying students who are ready for the 21st century workforce.The CMU, which acquired university status under a year ago, was among 65 institutions and persons honoured with the Prime Minister Jamaica 55 Commemorative Medal of Appreciation for contribution to nation building, recently.Speaking to JIS News following the presentation ceremony, President, CMU, Professor Fritz Pinnock, described the institution as an “agile university” that responds to the needs of the nation and the region.“It’s about reversing the whole thing where you know the solution cannot come from academia; it has to start with the industry, so we spin around from the classroom to the industry and work back to the classroom. I think this is something that we have been doing – looking at relevant careers, new careers and emerging careers. We now realise that the skills of the future lie in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), so we have made a shift,” he told JIS News.“We have to think and act differently, as the solution of the past is now a problem of the future; so we have to do things differently,” he added.Professor Pinnock said the institution now has the largest capacity in engineering across Jamaica. “We have surpassed all the other tertiary institutions,” he said, adding that approximately 500 international students are enrolled at the university.“We signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Government of Antigua and Barbuda and we are in discussions with two other countries, one of which is Bermuda, and we are looking at creating another collaboration,” he told JIS News.Expressing appreciation for the recognition, Professor Pinnock thanked the Government and people of Jamaica for the confidence reposed in the university.“I have a fantastic team, and in the seven months that we have been a university, we have received several international and local recognitions. We are doing our own little thing without any recognition in mind, and just to see this, it’s really an encouragement for the team, because as a university, we are really changing the landscape of higher education,” he said.Some of the awards include ‘Best Newcomer’ in the World University Debating Competition; seven gold medals in the World Cheerleading Tournament; and the hockey team copping the first prize in the Intercollegiate Hockey competition.“It has really been a great time for the University, and I must say I am really proud when I see youngsters making a difference,” he said.The institution is the first specialised public university and the only International Maritime Organization (IMO)-recognised maritime education and training provider in the English-speaking Caribbean.All programmes offered by the university are structured around the maritime industry, with the aim of developing the industry.Eighty-five per cent of graduates are placed in jobs within six months after graduation, compared to the other local universities where less than 50 per cent of their students are placed in the workforce.Additionally, 80 per cent of the teaching/support personnel is drawn from the industry, while over 50 per cent of the Members of the Board of Directors are from organisations within the shipping industry.last_img read more

Sister of slain Indigenous woman tells premiers federal cabinet ministers blood on

first_imgJorge Barrera APTN National NewsJudy Maas’ turn arrived again to speak in the final moments of Friday’s national roundtable on murdered and missing Indigenous women and, facing federal cabinet ministers and provincial premiers, she told them they had all “failed miserably.”Maas, whose 35 year-old sister Cynthia Maas was murdered by a serial killer in 2010, was one of four delegates chosen to represent the families of the murdered and the missing around the big table where the premiers of Ontario, Manitoba, the Yukon and the Northwest Territories sat along with the federal Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and the federal Status of Women Minister.“In our opinion you have failed miserably. Canada must address the shame they have created by systematically taking the Indian from the Indian. This policy has put blood on your hands, the blood of innocent women and children who have suffered the greatest insults, the price of their lives,” said Maas, according to a recording of the closed-door meeting obtained by APTN National News. “My baby sister was worth more than the mere pittance of short term funding and solutions.”The room was dead silent while she spoke, but erupted in applause after she ended, according to the recording.Judy MaasProvincial and federal leaders, along with the heads of the major Indigenous organizations across the country, responded by agreeing to meet again next year and begin developing a national approach to dealing with the disproportionate number of Indigenous women and girls who face deadly violence.The historic one-day roundtable held at the Marriott Hotel in Ottawa also produced a finalized framework to guide ongoing work on the issue leading up to next year’s meeting which will be held in Manitoba and focus on policing and justice issues. The meeting’s delegates also agreed to immediately begin developing a pan-Canadian awareness campaign about violence against Indigenous women.“It is a national issue, it is not an issue for one organization or one province, it is a national issue. It is not even just an Aboriginal issue, this is an issue for every single one of us,” said Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne. “We are together in this country and if one child is vulnerable and unsafe, then we all are.”NWT Premier Bob McLeod, who chaired the meeting, and Wynne both said there were some issues that the two levels of government couldn’t reach immediate agreement on, but neither would describe them.“(Ottawa) will have to answer the question on their own. The fact is that the provinces and territories and the Aboriginal organizations across the country are working very hard on these issues,” said Wynne. “We are on the same page, we are working to find a partner with the federal government.”Status of Women Minister Kellie Leitch and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Bernard Valcourt both denied there were any disagreements during the roundtable.“Actually, we supported each of the action items that were put forward on the table, whether it be the actual framework or the pan-Canadian action plan that Premier Wynne put forward, those were things we supported,” said Leitch.What Ottawa did disagree with was a request from Wynne that all sides represented at the roundtable hold a joint press conference.According to audio obtained from inside the meeting, Wynne asked the federal representatives to join the rest of the group.“I heard a rumour that Canada was going to be doing a separate press conference. I just hope that’s not the case because I think it would be wonderful for everyone to be together,” she said.Leitch, however, alluded to a possible security issue being the reason behind the decision to hold separate pressers, according to the audio recording.“I’m in the hands of the RCMP, to be frank with you,” said Leitch, according to the audio recording.APTN National News asked an RCMP officer who was part of the security detail at the Marriott Hotel whether security issues were keeping the federal ministers from joining the rest of the delegates at the press conference. The officer said the decision on press conferences was up to the federal politicians.Leitch told reporters at the federal media event, which was held at the Delta Hotel across the road from the Marriott, that the decision was made in the best interest of the family members.“Out of respect to the 20 organizations as well as to the families we felt that they should be able to get their message out,” said Leitch.There was a minor security issue during the roundtable after some family members of murdered and missing Indigenous women, along with a hand-full of demonstrators entered the Marriott’s lower lobby demanding people walk out of the roundtable.RCMP, Ottawa police and hotel security kept a wary eye on the group which was pacified to a degree by Nova Scotia Native Women’s Association President Cheryl Maloney who left the roundtable meeting to stand with the demonstrators and family members.Back inside the roundtable meeting, Maas drew a line from Canada’s colonial history to the government institutions it created and the death of her sister.“Some have enjoyed the benefits taken from our lands, but we, the first peoples, have not enjoyed that, nor have we enjoyed the freedom or the human rights. There are no dollar amounts that can bring back or replace our loss,” said Maas, according to the audio recording of her closing remarks. “Please do not insult my intelligence. I challenge you to take what you heard, to truly understand, to move forward out of the dark ages and create some measurable outcomes…I can take my sister as an example and measure her experience against the system, where it failed, how it failed and why it failed for her. The ministry of children and family was instrumental in putting the final nail on her coffin and her killer, only a means of physical death.”Maas’ sister Cynthia Maas was murdered by serial killer Cody Legebokoff who was sentenced to 25 years in September 2014. Cynthia Maas’ remains were found at a park in Prince George, B.C.“I can tell you that I and others know first-hand the underlying racism and hatred within all systems in Canada,” she said. “You as leaders have a duty and obligation to stand against the wrongdoings, immoral judgments unethical actions of your own.”[email protected]@JorgeBarreralast_img read more