Let’s do more to promote our English curriculum

first_imgDear EditorIt is said that the educational system is failing Guyanese. What would you expect when ordinary people are not being educated in English to understand and converse at a high level? May I remind Guyanese that the majority of books on science, technology, business, computer science, maths, etc are written in English, not Creolese?If students do not comprehend English from an early age, it tends to put them behind in other areas of learning.Also, when the State starts promoting Creolese culture in a multicultural society, it would be at the expense of other cultures.We’re a country of less than one million people; the rest of the world is not about to abandon English and learn Creolese.Yours faithfullySean Orilast_img read more

Robberies up by 22%…its portentous effects!

first_imgDear Editor,Robberies in Guyana are up by 22 per cent… that is the latest statistical figure given by the Guyana Police Force. Now, I am more inclined to believe that this is a highly conservative statistic, given the present climate that exists in Guyana. Because many robberies go unreported, especially robberies of the armed type, or where gun/s are involved.In a country where robberies form part of the daily grind — incidents involving theft, or forceful removal of one’s property — victims are most often reluctant to report or to prosecute the offenders. They would have thrown up their hands in frustration, or might have given in, saying, ‘Why bother? This is Guyana’. So thieves, bandits and robbers are emboldened by this acceptance of the situation by the hapless populace. As someone sarcastically remarked, armed robberies are the only successful business in Guyana. I would rephrase that to say armed robberies constitute the most successful occupation in Region Four. When you can have persons as young as 17 bearing high-powered weapons and carrying out armed invasions with impunity, then you know where we are going as a nation.To make our situation more grievous, This PNC-led Coalition seems to be oblivious to the goings-on around them. And I am of the staunch belief that the reason behind that “ostrich head in the sand” behaviour is because most of these sadistic acts are taking place in or close to their main stronghold, Georgetown; so let us appear not to know.Twenty-two per cent at face value might seem an innocuous figure, but in a small society such as ours, that is a really frightening statistic, where you don’t know when you might become the next victim or fatality in another armed robbery. Guyanese are now, as it were, paralysed by fear in this sick and sad country.Respectfully,Neil Adamslast_img read more

Granger, PNC woke up in Linden with empty promises, begged for another chance

first_imgDear Editor,Almost five years passed, five budgets presented, more than one trillion dollars squandered, David Granger and his clueless Cabinet and other big officials jetted around the world many times, frequented all the “hot” spots in Guyana, while communities like Linden were ignored and neglected. This past weekend, Granger and his PNC colleagues woke up and discovered that without Linden, they have no chance of winning the March 2 elections. They came, as usual, with empty promises, hoping they can still fool the people.Granger decided to take the PNC to Linden to celebrate the 62nd founding anniversary of Forbes Burnham’s party. They brought supporters from all over the country, generously utilising Government resources for what was essentially the PNC launching its elections campaign. To ensure the presence of enough people, they brought out school children in their uniforms. In the process, Granger appealed to Lindeners to give him a second chance, admitting he neglected them for five years, even if he did not admit it out loud.In his second chance appeal, he promised them, if they give him a second chance, that he will ensure 150 new jobs will be created in 2020 by the establishment of a new call centre at Kuru Kuru. He also promised 500 new house lots if he gets his second chance. He promised them that a Private Sector investor will build an oil refinery in Linden. Clearly, Granger and the PNC recognised that they abandoned people, including their own supporters. Linden has been loyal to the PNC, no matter what form they assumed. When they re-birthed themselves into the PNC/One R, the Linden people stuck with them. When they took on a new name – APNU – the people of Linden stayed with them. When they took on the name APNU/AFC, the people continued to support them.But it has now been almost five years since they have had the power of Government. In those five years, they expended more than one trillion dollars. Yet Linden is no better than they were in 2015, indeed, Linden is worse than they were in 2015. The people of Linden have begun to whisper that they were better off with the PPP. Just as people realised they were deserted by the PNC before 1992, the people of Linden know they were taken for granted by the Granger-led PNC. As they descended mightily on Linden with supporters from around the country to prop them up, in case the people of Linden did not show up, they deliberately left their associates – WPA, AFC and the several others – in Georgetown. Really, it was Granger and the PNC being as devious as they have always been, whispering it was not the PNC that abandoned Linden, it was the WPA and the AFC and all the others.As most people in Linden went about their business, it was pathetic seeing Granger in his ‘not bothered’ pose watching the children sit there into the midnight hours, watching supporters from Regions Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight and Nine and other parts of Region 10 being fetched there with Government resources, wondering where the people of Linden were. In his ‘not bothered’ pose, he kept waiting to see Linden turn out to salute him. They did not because in 2018 he told them to “get up and get going” and not wait for Government to make things happen for them. The people of Linden did not forget. They also know elections are coming up and Granger and his bunch, all of whom have been incorporated into the PNC, are back with wild promises.The PNC in the form of APNU/AFC gave up the housing programme of the PPP that brought thousands of house lots and thousands of new homes into Linden. Granger and APNU/AFC had told people before the 2015 elections that they will create thousands of new house lots for thousands of new homeowners, make it easier for them to obtain low-interest mortgages. Now, as we approach 2020, they make the promise of 500 house lots, after delivering none in five years.But the most hurtful promise was the promise of 150 new jobs through a new call centre. In 2015, they promised thousands of new jobs with new call centres. But the first thing they did was a down-scaling of the call centre that was established under a PPP Government. The call centre in Linden that was there in 2015 because of the PPP first reduced its operation under APNU/AFC, and, by 2018, had closed its doors.The ‘not bothered’ Granger did nothing about it. Suddenly, he shows up in Linden and in front of the fetched-in supporters, told Lindeners if they give him a second chance, he will bring 150 new jobs in a new call centre. Sheer hypocrisy and more empty promises.In the meanwhile, other communities across the country that were neglected are making noises. The people of Buxton know they were neglected. The sugar workers across the country know they were neglected. The public servants know they were abandoned. Just yesterday, more than 4000 sugar workers sent a petition to Granger to correct a wrong he personally led – they have not been given a wage increase since the end of 2014. Granger himself led the empty promise campaign in 2015 to fool workers that they would be given an annual increase of 20 per cent. Instead, since Granger and APNU/AFC took the Government, the sugar workers have not been given a cent in increased wages. And the man he promised will build the oil refinery in Linden is the same man he took around the country to promise rice farmers they would be paid $9000 per bag for paddy. Payback time has arrived and the people of Guyana will not be so forgiving, they will not give them another chance for empty promises.Sincerely,Dr Leslie Ramsammylast_img read more

Man remanded for attempted murder of national footballer

first_imgA man with a fractured leg that hops with crutches was on Friday remanded at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court after appearing before Chief Magistrate Ann McLennan on attempted murder charge.Oswald Andrews, 34, of Middle Street, South Cummingsburg, Georgetown, was not allowed to plea to the indictable offence.Rensford ColeridgeIt was alleged that on July 19, 2016, at Queen Street, South Cummingsburg, he unlawfully and maliciously assaulted Rensford Coleridge, a national footballer with intent to commit murder.Police Prosecutor Deniro Jones successfully objected to bail due to the gravity of the offence and the fact that the virtual complainant (VC) Coloridge, sustained stab wounds to his hip, chest and shoulder and is currently in a critical condition at a hospital.The defendant was remanded and will return to Court on September 5, 2016.It was reported that Coleridge was rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital after sustaining the stab wounds. He arrived GPH in a semi-conscious manner.According to reports the stabbing allegedly occurred because Andrews believed that Coleridge was texting his girlfriend. Coleridge was said to be sitting a short distance from his home at a shop looking at television when Andrew’s dealt him the stabs.last_img read more

Ebola Rescue Drama Thrills MacDonald Street Residents

first_imgThe Ebola infected man sat with his head bowed and apparently in pain as he emitted sounds of uneasiness.  Further from him, a woman, his wife, began to shout through a public address system, (PA), “Please husband don’t die.” It was evident that the fear of the unusual transmission of the deadly Ebola virus was central to the woman’s fear to go near her husband. All she was saying was, “Please don’t die,” when in fact he was losing it gradually. He was dying because out of her frustration, she had not followed the instruction to call the 4455 to get assistance from the Ebola Response Team to save her husband’s life. Meanwhile, another man, aware of what to do in such a situation, pulled a mobile phone from his pocket and began to call the Ebola Response Team.  “Yes,” he said, “there is a man who is suspected of having the Ebola virus here.” After some back and forth discussion on the phone, he turned to the woman and assured her, “Don’t worry they are coming to give the help your husband needs.”  In a few minutes, the Ebola Response Team arrived, and a man dressed in white, personal protective equipment (PPE) gear against the Ebola virus jumped out of the jeep.  “We are here to help you,” he assured the woman, who seemed very much confused.  “If you take my husband away,” the woman wanted to know from the man in white, “you are not going to take his kidney and sell it?”  “No,” the man said, and he began to address the woman’s misconceptions. “We don’t take kidneys from anyone who is suspected of suffering from this disease.” “It is that true?” the woman asked, her face askance, unsure what to believe. “You are not going to kill him, are you?” “No,” the man said, “we don’t do that to anyone who is taken to the Ebola Unit. We provide them with proper care and we make sure that they are fine.  “Early detection is the best way to give anyone suspected of suffering from the virus and it is a good chance for him to survive it,” the man in white reassured the lady.  Doing away of her disbelief, the woman said, “So all the bad things I heard about what you do to Ebola patient is not true?”  “Yes,” the man reassured her.  The man in Ebola protected gear held the suspected Ebola victim and slowly led him to the waiting jeep to be transported to a recognized Center for testing and supervision.   Meanwhile, many bystanders watched the scene from afar as this drama unfolded.  It was an awareness campaign by the Medical Renaissance League performed yesterday on MacDonald Street, near the Daily Observer newspaper’s offices.  The brief drama, according to the organization’s administrator, Ms. Theresa Praud, is part of her group’s Ebola Awareness Campaign in Montserrado County in the fight against the deadly disease.  Bystanders enjoyed the drama and, for a minute they behaved as though they were convinced that the message had been effectively communicated.  “I now know what the medical people are doing to help us,” said a woman who said she enjoyed the drama.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

‘Redlight-Gbarnga Road Is Going as Scheduled’

first_imgThe Chongqing International Construction Corporation (CICO) has told the Daily Observer in a statement that the on-going Redlight-Gbarnga Road project is on schedule.The company also stated that it is using some of the latest road-building technologies in the construction of the 180-kilometer highway, which is a major route, leading to neighboring La Côte d’Ivoire and the Republic of Guinea.CICO is presently undertaking the reconstruction of the highway leading from Redlight Market in Paynesville City to Gbarnga City in Bong County in a 10-year deal signed between its management and the Government of Liberia. The project, valued at US$168M, is being financed by the World Bank.Included in the 10 years, according to CICO, are three years for rehabilitation and another five for maintenance before it would be finally turned over to the Government of Liberia.The company responded to the Observer after reports emerged that the present Rainy Season had “exposed their bad works” and that it does not also display road safety signs for vehicles’ operators to know that construction works are taking place.The road building company told the Observer that it was strictly following the specifications spelled out in the contract agreement that the Ministry of Public Works handed it.Touching on another report of “many motor accidents,” owning to not placing the right road signs or posting men to alert on-coming vehicles, CICO’s statement stated: “Flagmen are currently posted along the highway and they are using the required red and green flags for traffic control along with damaged ones regularly replaced while the replacement of damaged personnel protective equipment at Weala and Gbartala continued up till now.”CICO further said that “isolated incidents of motor accidents” should not be attributed to the company, “while neglecting the fact that vehicles moving at high speed are currently running into safety drums painted white and black which are used along the highway serving as barricades at culvert construction sites for traffic control during road works.”“With the designed, rehabilitation and maintenance of the Red Light-Gbarnga highway and that of the Konola bridge by CICO, trade and commerce is expected to boom within a short period when the road is officially dedicated, thus allowing the free flow of traffic in that part of the country.  This thoroughfare happens to be a major international route,” the CICO spokesman said.They called on the public not to create what they termed as an “ugly effigy of a company that has contributed and continues to contribute to the reconstruction drive of post-war Liberia.”CICO assured the public of their preparedness and willingness to successfully complete and turn over the Redlight-Gbarnga road project according to schedule.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Ebola Has Negatively Affected Revenue Performance

first_imgThe Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA) says the Ebola crisis has unfavorably affected revenue collection in the country.Addressing the LRA’s maiden press conference in Monrovia last Friday, the Commissioner General Mrs. Elfrieda Stewart Tamba, said the Ebola crisis undermined revenue collection in July and August.The LRA boss disclosed that the authority had benchmarked itself to collect US$122 million in the first quarter of 2014, but exceeded its benchmark and collected over US$124 million, about US$2.6 million in excess.She, however, noted that the targeted collection declined in July during which time the LRA collected only 35% [US$43.4 million] of its target.Performance dipped further in August from 35% to 28% [US$34.7 million] in August. Performance level meanwhile recorded growth in September rising to 37% [US$45.8 million].For grants, Commissioner General Tamba said the LRA was to collect US$13 million but only US$12.6 million came into the country due to certain trackers that were not met by the government or a particularly Ministry that is responsible for it.Mrs. Tamba called on government to invest more in the LRA as an institution in order to strengthen it to collect needed revenues to finance development projects across the country.According to her, government needs to invest more in the LRA as an institution, because the institution has two components, the human assets and the pie assets.  And “We believe with that kind of investment which we anticipate, we will have an increased tax motivation and integrity of staff improvement.”The LRA Commissioner General told newsman that the revenue collected by the entity is used directly by the government to fund public services to benefit all citizens including residents and non-residents as well as legal and non-legal “because government uses them to provide some basic services, such as, building schools, medical services, electricity, good road facilities.”Commissioner General Tamba re-emphasized the government’s need to exert more effort in attracting investors into the country through tax reforms, if it wants to achieve economic growth and enhance the people’s standard of living. “As our target,” she said, “we seek to execute our mandate effectively; we look, we own and want you to judge us, as we go along in executing the revenue code fairly; and that [commits]   the revenue administrators, the citizens and residents and all stakeholders to certain basic rights and responsibilities,” she told journalists. LRA is responsible for the administration of taxes and customs duties in Liberia. The main function is the assessment, collection and remittance to Government of taxes and duties due under the Act it administers, she declared.“Our goal is to optimize revenue mobilization for national development through the delivery of quality service to taxpayers and other stakeholders. We therefore urge our taxpayers to comply voluntarily by declaring and paying all taxes and duties appropriately.”Mrs. Tamba added that the vision of LRA is to be a world class revenue administration,  recognized for professionalism, integrity and excellence. “Our mission is to mobilize revenue for national development in a transparent, fair, effective and efficient manner.”“As part of our modernization programme,” she continued,  “LRA pledges to implement more modern and innovative strategies to enhance revenue collection.The Commissioner General used the occasion to encourage all taxpayers and the general public to honor their tax obligations for better roads, improved electricity, education, health services and provision of other amenities to the people of Liberia.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Team Debbah in 3rd Week Session

first_imgThe newly appointed coaches of the various Lone Stars yesterday continued their practices with selected neighborhood players at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium, as part of a program developed by the technical department of the Liberia Football Association.“The team they are working work is from the neighborhood around here,” technical director Henry Browne told the Daily Observer, “they have been working with these players for the last three weeks.”The Daily Observer observed coaches James Salinsa Debbah, Chris Wreh, Joe Nagbe, Jonah Sarwieh, Oliver Markoh, Janjay Jacobs, Kervin Sebwe and Thomas Kojo at the stadium. Kojo and Sebwe were actively working with a team of players, along with two females, including skipper Kebeh Lamine of Earth Angels.Thomas Kojo said, “Since the fight against the Ebola is still going on, we are now working with a limited number of players that will prepare us (coaches) on what is ahead of us.”Kojo meanwhile took the players into several stretching exercises, as the head coach of the senior national team, James Debbah and others gave him their attention.“Today’s session is being conducted by Kervin,” Kojo said, “and therefore as you can see the rest of the coaches are watching keenly while the LFA technical team of Browne, Tamba and Smith are also observing keenly.”The coaches’ have attended all sessions, since the session began three weeks ago, and the responses of the players have been impressive, Browne said.Because the fight against Ebola is still on-going, fans attendance to the training sessions are restricted, Browne told the Daily Observer.Meanwhile, after series of exercise with the men, Coach Sebwe joined two female players and took them through a series of stretching, ball control and possession exercises.“Every time we come here,” Kojo explained, “one of us (coaches) will lead the training while others pay attention to what a coach is doing.”And it was exactly what Kervin Sebwe was doing while the others were observing and taking notes.“Later we examine and critic each other,” Kojo said, “and that way we know what we are doing which will help us when we begin the actual work with our respective groups.”Browne said after the Christmas break, teams would be assigned to the various coaches to begin the actual work.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Disabled Community Wants Ellen to Reconstitute NCD Leadership

first_imgThe disabled Community, comprising the deaf, blind and other categories of vulnerable groups, is calling on President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai, Sr., to reconstitute the leadership of the National Commission on Disability (NCD).The group recently issued a statement signed by Thompson Wialison, chair of  the Steering Committee of the National Union of Organizations for the Disabled (NUOD).  Mr. Wialison is himself physically challenged.In their statement, the NUOD commended President Sirleaf and Veep Boakai for the generous Season’s gifts presented to them, but said the greatest gift they desire for now is the appointment or reconstitution of the three new directors at the NCD.“The Disabled Community wishes to remind President Sirleaf that on June 4 last year,  the Civil Service Agency (CSA) conducted an interview for the three positions at the NCD— the executive director, deputy for administration, and deputy director for technical services.   [Several qualified] disabled were interviewed and subsequently forwarded by the CSA to the office of the V.P. for onward submission to the office of the President for official appointment.  “Since the process started,”  the NUOD noted, “there have been some “unfortunate” delays among the bureaucrats regarding the submission of the names to the office of the President for appointment of the three new NDC directors.The disabled group is reminding the office of the V.P. to speedily submit the names to the office of the President so that [appropriate action] relative to the appointment of the three new NCD directors would be taken. This said NUOD, will enhance “the future growth and development of Liberians living with disabilities.”The Disabled Community has further congratulated  President Sirleaf and Veep Boakai for their numerous official lobbying initiatives with the international community for assistance to enhance their welfare, especially in the fight against  the Ebola virus disease (EVD)  that has plagued the country since March last year.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

THINK, UNFPA, Partners to Document Female Ebola Survivors Experience

first_imgA documentation that is expected to highlight challenges facing female Ebola survivors and how to resolve those constraints  will shortly be launched in the country by United  Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), donor partners and several government Ministries in the country.Making the disclosure at a daylong  forum in Tubmanburg, Bomi County recently, Mrs. Rosana Shaack, executive director of Touching Humanity in Need of Kindness (THINK),  said her organization had already begun collating information from Ebola survivors, especially females who, she said, had gone through traumatic situations at different Ebola Treatment Units  (ETU), and were experiencing stigmatization from community dwellers.“UNFPA, Swedish government, Ministries of Gender and Development, Health and other donor partners really want to document what you people are facing, after been discharged from your various ETUs and how best they can help to integrate you into the communities without experiencing stigmatization,” Madam Shaacks said.“This forum is intended for our partners to know your situations and how they can help you find a way to solve them,” she added. “You have to share your experiences and what is affecting you most, after you left your ETU centers.”The THINK executive director   continued, “They want to know how you have been surviving and coping with your post-Ebola trauma as well as life in your communities.”Madam Shaack pointed out that “neighboring Guinea and Sierra Leone are still affected with the Ebola virus, and as such, Liberians need to practice still the preventive measures prescribed by the health authorities.She then lauded government and the Bomi County Health Team for their efforts to help contain the deadly virus in the county.According to her, she would extend the exercise to several other counties, naming Grand Cape Mount, Margibi, Bong, Nimba and Montserrado as initial ones.These activities, she said, which run from March 9-21 are being funded by the Swedish Development Agency (SIDA).Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more