Observer Faces Closure

first_imgIn its history of frequent shut downs, none of which has occurred under this administration so far, the Daily Observer faces a new threat of closure. On Friday, March 28, just before close of business, Ministry of Finance personnel came to the LOC’s offices on the corner of Benson and McDonald streets and informed staff there that the Ministry was placing on the office building a warning notice giving the property owners 72 business hours to meet its real estate tax obligations or the building would be closed. That move, says the Observer management, is tantamount to the Daily Observer being put out of circulation because real estate taxes on the property leased by the Observer have not been paid by the administrators of the Nete-Sie Brownell intestate estate since 2006.“If we are closed down, we lose business and advertisers’ confidence,” said Bai Best, an executive of the 33-year-old corporation. “The scores of newspaper vendors who depend on the Daily Observer among other newspapers they sell will also suffer a substantial reduction in their earnings. Furthermore, government owes LOC a lot of money and it seems unfair for it to be closing us down over taxes for which we are not even responsible,” Best said.The lease agreement signed in April 2005 between the LOC and the Nete-Sie Brownell family states that payment of the property’s real estate taxes is the responsibility of the Lessor. The LOC management says that it has paid its lease faithfully every year to the Administratrix, Madam Mary N. Brownell, with whom it has enjoyed excellent relations due to strong family ties.“We had no idea the taxes on the property were in arrears for so long,” the LOC executive said.The LOC management says that last November the taxation personnel of the Finance Ministry began to frequent the office and question them about the real estate tax payment. The LOC told the tax collection agents that the Lessor was responsible according to the lease agreement. Upon their demands, Observer referred them to Madam Brownell. However the agents returned to LOC management and warned that if the taxes were not paid, the office building would be shut down. At that point the management brought out a copy of the lease agreement to show the agents, but they were insistent that closure of the premises was imminent if the taxes were not paid by the due date according to the real estate tax code.In the course of the ordeal, the LOC management was requested by Counsellor Alfred Brownell, nephew of the Administratrix, to provide him with a copy of the lease agreement which the company provided. The LOC says at that point, the management was under the impression that the family was taking care of the tax issue. A few weeks later, the lease payment was due, and Madam Brownell was contacted for an appointment to take the payment to her residence as is usually the case, says LOC. Madam Brownell told the LOC, however, that since we had begun talking to Alfred, the company should continue dealing directly with him. Half an hour after the conversation with Madam Brownell, a letter arrived at the LOC office from Counsellor Alfred Brownell of Green Advocates International, signing as the legal counsel and one of the administrators of the estate. In his letter, Cllr. Brownell informed LOC that the Brownell family was “proposing an increment in the annual rent [from US$5,500] to US$15,000 per annum for the remaining two years optional period of the lease. Cllr. Brownell, however, said the proposal was not “cast in stone” and that the family was “flexible and open for a mutual dialogue to amicably and mutually agreed on the terms and conditions as agreed to under the April 20th, 2005 lease agreement…” The letter concluded with a proposal that the parties meet for discussion at the home of Madam Brownell on Monday, March 24th.The meeting took place as agreed with LOC, represented by its lawyer, Cllr. Rosemarie James of the International Group of Legal Advocates and Consultants. Cllr. Brownell and Madam Brownell represented their family. During the meeting, Cllr. Brownell insisted that it was legal for the lease amount to be increased in the middle of the optional period when the administrators had already received several payments based on the terms of the lease agreement. Cllr. James differed with Cllr. Brownell’s point of view, and the meeting ended with Cllr James stating that a response to the Brownell letter would follow.During a telephone call on Monday, Cllr. Brownell said the Nete-Sie Brownell heirs could not negotiate with Finance Ministry until they receive LOC’s response to the proposed increment in the lease payment. LOC’s legal counsel has since responded. Meanwhile the threat of closure by the Ministry of Finance still looms over the Daily Observer, with the 72-hour warning expiring today, Wednesday, April 2. The LOC management thanks its many readers and advertisers for their patronage and support and asks for their patience in case the impending closure takes place.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

NHA, HFHI to Develop Housing Sector Policy

first_imgMr. Siryon and HFHI Chief of Party, Matthew Ndote display the MoU after affixing their signatures.The National Housing Authority (NHA), in an effort to improve the housing sector, has entered into a four-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Habitat for Humanity International (HFHI), a United States of America-based organization for the development of a national housing sector policy guideline.The MoU, signed Friday, August 31, in Monrovia, is meant to facilitate increased access to affordable housing for low income households through an inclusive market approach. The agreement will ensure the development of policy guidelines in consultation with all stakeholders; construction of community level housing pilots, and the capacity development for the private sector to play a greater role in delivering sustainable and affordable housing solutions.It will also ensure institutional capacity building of NHA’s employees, other relevant agencies, and communities on Participatory Safe Shelter Awareness (PASSA).NHA Managing Director, Duannah Siryon, described the partnership as crucial to the sustainable delivery of adequate and affordable housing, especially to communities living in slums.Under the agreement, Siryon said, the authority is committed to hosting HFHI and is to provide the required support for smooth implementation of its programs through the Slum Upgrading Unit (SUU) of the NHA.Mr. Siryon signing the MOUHe said that the MoU serves as an impetus to the formal process, reinforcing existing collaboration between the two organizations that began since 2017.“This is the first step in the right direction of NHA’s strategic partnerships under the new government,” he said.He added that his entity, with shared vision, is open to partner with others in addressing the housing needs of vulnerable and low-income Liberians.Mr. Siryon then commended HFHI for choosing to partner with the NHA, and encouraged such engagements to ensure sustainability of project initiatives.He lauded the coordinator of the Slum Upgrading Unit, Es-Samir Bropleh, other management and staff of the NHA for their dedication and support that have now culminated into attracting international partners.HFHI Chief of Party (CoP), Mathew Ndote, said his organization is led by the vision that everyone needs a decent place to live. Mr. Ndote said that the four main deliverables of the agreement that have been earmarked are very critical to the work of the NHA. These will be achieved through an inclusive Market Systems development approach.“Under this MoU, we intend to develop policy guidelines in consultation with all stakeholders, construction of community level housing pilots, and the capacity development for private sector involvement,” he said.Mr. Ndote said that significant progress made so far could not have been achieved without the support, guidance, and contribution of donors, Comic Relief and Cities Alliance, relevant government ministries and institutions, the slum communities and local partners.He expressed HFHI’s honest desire to scale-up its intervention beyond pilots and collaborate with NHA and the Liberian government beyond four years and confirmed that intensive work will commence early this week.Habitat for Humanity began in 1976 as a grassroot effort on a community farm in southern Georgia, in U.S. The housing organization has since grown to become a leading global not-for-profit organization working in more than 70 countries.Families and individuals in need of a hand can partner with Habitat for Humanity to build or improve a place they can call home.Through financial support, volunteering or adding a voice to support affordable housing, everyone can help families achieve the strength, stability and self-reliance they need to build better lives for themselves.Mr. Ndote further emphasized that both HFHI and NHA share the vision of providing greater access to adequate and affordable housing for low-income and vulnerable communities and plan to achieve this through working with public, private and community sector partners.He added that the Cities Alliance Liberia Country Program provides a platform for partnership and collaboration between communities, public and private sector actors, to contribute towards improving the quality of lives for low-income and vulnerable communities and sustainable urban development.He commended NHA for the establishment of the Slum Upgrading Unit, which demonstrates a significant policy shift by the government towards supporting slum upgrading.Abubakar Bah, Assistant Minister for Urban Affairs, Ministry of Internal Affairs, and Vijay Parmar, Country Program Manager of Cities Alliance, lauded the partnership and described it as an important achievement.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Suspects confess to shooting Essequibo barber

first_imgInjured Troy HerculesAfter intense grilling by detectives from G Division (Essequibo Coast and Islands), the two suspects who were apprehended in connection with the violent robbery committed on a barber have confessed.Forty-two-year-old Troy Hercules, also called “Akee”, was shot on Saturday by gunmen in front of his Henrietta, Essequibo Coast home. Hercules is presently in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) at the Suddie Public Hospital.The injured man on life supportSixteen-year-old Mahindra Giranandan, also called Anish, of Adventure, Essequibo and 23-year-old Mark Rafino, of Queenstown village, Essequibo have admitted to Police that they indeed robbed and shot Hercules. Both suspects were trying to escape the Region (Pomeroon-Supenaam) when Police nabbed them at Supenaam and Parika respectively.During a search of one of the suspects, detectives discovered a quantity of jewellery suspected to be Hercules’ and a .32 pistol with 11 matching rounds. Information revealed that the two unemployed men were seen earlier at Queenstown village at the same barbecue Hercules was attending on the night of his birthday. At the time, Hercules was reportedly wearing several heavy gold chains, rings and a band worth $3.5 million. Investigations revealed that the duo tailed Hercules to his home and when he exited his vehicle, they attacked, shooting him four times as they relieved him of his belongings.Hercules was rushed into the theatre at Suddie Public Hospital on Saturday morning for emergency surgery. The four bullets were successfully removed from his chest and legs.According to the victim’s reputed wife, Sheoma Critchlow, his condition is improving and he has regained consciousness. She, however, noted that he was crying out for pain about his body.Family members of the injured man are calling on the Police to thoroughly investigate the matter, contending that the gunmen should be dealt with according to the law.Hercules is the owner of the popular barber shop, Future Cut. Police are continuing their investigations and charges will soon be laid against the duo.last_img read more

Right to scrutinise Budget should not be hijacked – PSC

first_img…says Monday’s chaos in Parliament should never reoccurThe Private Sector Commission (PSC) has noted “with great concern” the events which took place on Monday, December 11, in the National Assembly.Noting that the objective of Parliament is to allow deliberation on questions of interest to the nation, and to arrive at the will of the Assembly in a civilised manner, the PSC says it firmly believes that Parliament is the forum where members must be free to challenge each other, including the Honourable Speaker, as they pursue the relentless representation of the people of Guyana.The PSC alluded to the fact that the procedures to be followed by Members of Parliament in the conduct of their deliberations were clearly set out and the methods for dealing with dissenters were also established.“Members enjoy certain privileges when seated in Parliament and, if these are abused, are subject to disciplinary action as determined by the Speaker in consultation with the Privileges Committee. The involvement of law enforcement, apart from being an unacceptable overreaction, is an unfortunate occurrence. It does not augur well for our democracy. Any such display of lawlessness should never reoccur,” the PSC said in a statement.“The damage has already been done, but the Commission expects that all involved will critically review the events of Monday. It is a time to analyse and reflect on the negative impact these have had on our nation’s image internationally,” the PSC urged.The Commission also stated that in the interest of the nation, parliamentarians have a right to seek clarification and a full understanding of the Budget as approved by Parliament. “The debate should not be hijacked. The Budget affects the life of each and every Guyanese and discussions around it are necessary,” it posited.There should be patience and understanding on both sides of the floor, the PSC added.last_img read more

Speeding motorcyclist killed on Kitty Public Road

first_imgMotorcyclist Suresh Kellowan of Enmore, East Coast Demerara lost his life while negotiating the Russian Embassy turn on the Kitty Public Road in Georgetown at about 03:00hrs on Sunday.Reports are that the 22-year-old machine operator was proceeding west while attempting to negotiate the turn when the motorcycle slide and collided with the guard rail of the said Russian Embassy. Kellowan reportedly was not wearing aSuresh Kellowansafety helmet at the time.Rushed to the Georgetown Public Hospital (GPHC), he was pronounced dead on arrival.When <> spoke with the dead man’s mother, Patricia Budhram, she said she learnt of her son’s demise through a cousin who saw the accident on Facebook.She said she rushed to the scene of the accident, where she saw Kellowan’s lunch bowl, boots and motorcycle parts scattered on the roadway.“Me also see a large pool of blood on the road and a sheet where they say he was lying,” the distraught woman revealed. Budhram said she rushed to the Lyken Funeral Home, where she positively identified her son.The weeping woman said she was told that the impact of hitting the rail caused Kellowan’s neck to be broken, and this caused his demise.She was uncertain where her son was headed, but said she had seen him the previous day, as she usually cooked for him. Kellowan leaves to mourn his mother, father and three siblings.last_img read more

If NEC want me out, I will leave – Zapata

first_img“I will have a meeting with the Executive Committee to analyze the season and see what we need to do in the team and what’s better for us. If they think the coach is the problem then, it’s okay, I will go, but I think the problem is much deeper,” the tactician told Capital Sport.The loss to Tusker on Wednesday evening in Machakos was AFC’s fifth in six games further compounding the coach’s pressure and worse was that the players never gave even an ounce of effort to try and salvage their season.The body language of AFC Leopards players before their Kenyan premier League match against Tusker FC in Machakos on September 27, 2018 was not the best. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluA handful of fans who had travelled for the early afternoon midweek kick-off did not hide their emotions, some calling for the coach’s sacking while others asked him to step aside as he was conducting pitch-side interview.“There is nothing you will tell us. You have to resign,” one of the fans shouted as the tactician spoke.Zapata arrived in the country in May from Botswana club Gaborone United and notes the five months he has been around is too short a time to make any meaningful change to the club, asking for patience as he drafts out a plan for next season.“I don’t know… for me the most important is the team. I am here till the season ends because it is just two games. I have a meeting with the executive and we will see what we need to have success next season. I will give an opportunity to all the players and thereafter make a report,” the coach said.He added; “It is hard to change 20 years of history within five months. I took the team with the players chosen by coach Matano (Robert). I didn’t choose the players. We need to be patient especially with the young players and have a plan.”“We had done well and we are at third position. We lost in the semi-final of the Shield. I know everyone is angry because no one wants to lose but we have to plan for the future,” he further alluded.AFC Leopards head coach Rodolfo Zapata in a pensive mood during his side’s Kenyan Premier League match against Tusker FC in Machakos on September 26, 2018. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluThe tactician said the loss against Tusker, their heaviest loss this season was due to lack of motivation following their Shield defeat to Sofapaka on Sunday. He has admitted it was hard to motivate the players after the loss.“For the first half an hour we played good football and created chances but we could not take them. We ended up making several mistakes including individual performances which were not good. The attitude of the players was not good too and some of our important players are not playing well,” the tactician further stated.Placed third in the SportPesa Premier League standings with 51 points, Leopards can finish as low as seventh if they lose their last two games of the season. They will travel away to Ulinzi Stars before winding up the season at home to Nzoia Sugar.Whether or not the tactician remains to be at the helm of the club remains to be seen with some club officials backing him to retain his role and be with the club next season.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000AFC Leopards head coach Rodolfo Zapata watches from the touchline during a past Kenyan Premier League match. Photo/Timothy OlobuluNAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 27 – Embattled AFC Leopards head coach Rodolfo Zapata says he is ready to leave the club if the National Executive Committee (NEC) is not impressed with his work, but notes he will not throw in the towel just yet.The tactician has been under pressure with the team dwindling in fortunes, the Sunday defeat to Sofapaka in the SportPesa Shield piling more pressure on the Argentine and Wednesday’s 4-0 drubbing at the hands of Tusker FC in a league fixture sinking the knife deeper.last_img read more

Doctors of Anna Nicole investigated

first_imgSearches were carried out in Los Angeles and Orange counties “related to doctors who provided medical treatment or prescribed drugs for Anna Nicole Smith or her associates,” he said. Six locations were raided in Los Angeles County, said Sandi Gibbons, spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office. Agents have so far reviewed over 100,000 computer images and files, analyzed patient profiles and pharmacy logs and interviewed witnesses throughout the country and abroad, he said. Eroshevich’s attorney, Gary Lincenberg told KNBC-TV that the investigation only concerned whether prescriptions to Smith were proper. The current investigation could lead to state charges either in California or Florida or even federal charges if the government decides it wants to send a signal that overprescribing drugs won’t be tolerated, he said. Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley said in a statement that he will file charges “as appropriate,” after evaluating results of the search warrants.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.California Department of Justice agents raided the office of Smith’s psychiatrist, Dr. Khristine Eroshevich and the home and office of Dr. Sandeep Kapoor, who prescribed the painkiller methadone to Smith shortly before her death. Authorities did not name the doctors but their attorneys confirmed the searches. Smith died of an accidental drug overdose in February at a Florida hotel. She was 39. The department began investigating in March because “dangerous drugs … were part of the death of Anna Nicole Smith, and I learned that these were California doctors and California prescriptions,” Attorney General Jerry Brown said at a news conference. “We do know from the public record that there’s someone who’s dead and her body, upon investigation, is full of controlled substances and combinations of drugs that turned out to be illegal,” he said. RAIDS: Authorities searched Los Angeles and Orange county offices or homes. By Robert Jablon and Paul Elias THE ASSOCIATED PRESS Eight months and 2,300 miles away from where Anna Nicole Smith died of an overdose, California authorities Friday raided homes and offices of the doctors who prescribed drugs to the former Playboy Playmate. last_img read more

Norwich striker charged by FA with misconduct in relation to betting

first_img1 Kyle Lafferty Norwich striker Kyle Lafferty has been charged by the Football Association with misconduct in relation to betting.The 28-year-old Northern Ireland international is alleged to have broken FA rules by betting on a match in February.The governing body said in a statement: “Kyle Lafferty has been charged by the FA for misconduct in relation to betting.“It is alleged that on February 20 2016, the Norwich City forward placed a bet on the result, progress, conduct or any other aspect of, or occurrence in, a football match or competition in breach of FA rule E8. “He has until 5 August 2016 to respond to the charge.”last_img

McGwire has no regrets about testimony

first_imgST. LOUIS —Mark McGwire stands by his no comment. The St. Louis Cardinals season home run king made his first appearance at Busch Stadium this season on Friday as part of a final-weekend reunion at the 40-year-old ballpark. He said he had no regrets about his often-criticized testimony before Congress in March during steroids hearings, during which he repeatedly said “I’m not here to talk about the past.” McGwire told Congress he’d be interested in speaking out against steroid abuse. Now he said he isn’t interested in discussing the steroids issue anymore. McGwire said he’s aware his image has taken a big hit but didn’t appear concerned. He said he missed baseball and would like to get back into the sport “some day.” AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 McGwire broke Roger Maris’ home run record in 1998 when he hit 70, and hit 583 home runs in his career. He participated in the stadium countdown, removing the number 3 from the right-field wall. McGwire, a Damien High School graduate who retired in 2001 and lives in California, was among dozens of former Cardinals who returned to give the 40-year-old stadium a good send-off. McGwire said if he lived in St. Louis, “I’d be here all of time. I just don’t live here.” Wie to turn pro six days before 16 Michelle Wie will stick to her routine by going to school Wednesday, with one notable exception. She will be the only junior at Punahou School who already is a millionaire. Six days before she turns 16, still not old enough to drive car by herself, the 6-foot prodigy will turn professional with two endorsement deals that will make her the richest female golfer. Two sources involved with her decision, speaking on condition of anonymity, said Wie will make the announcement at 8 a.m. Wednesday in Honolulu at the Kahala Mandarin Hotel near Waialae Country Club, where she twice played in the Sony Open and shot 68 as a 14-year-old. center_img The sources said Wie will sign two major endorsements, with Nike and Sony. One source said the Nike contract would pay her about $4 million to $5 million a year. The other major endorsement is with Sony, which is believed to be worth close to the Nike deal. Federer advances to Thailand Open semis BANGKOK, Thailand –Top-seeded Roger Federer, the defending champion, had no trouble in reaching the semifinals with a 6-4, 6-3 win over Gilles Muller of Luxembourg in the Thailand Open. The Swiss star will face sixth-seeded Jarkko Nieminen of Finland, who downed Taiwan’s Wang Yeu-tzuoo 6-4, 6-7 (3), 6-4. Andy Murray, an 18-year-old Scotsman, upset Robby Ginepri 4-6, 6-4, 6-3. He fired 11 aces in advancing to his first ATP semifinal. Murray will next face seventh-seeded Paradorn Srichaphan, the Thai star who made the semis when Lleyton Hewitt withdrew because of a groing injury. Ginepri lost in the quarterfinals Friday, eliminating the second-and third-seeded players from the tournament. Notable Andre Agassi has pulled out of next month’s Stockholm Open because of a lingering back injury. Agassi, ranked sixth in the world, is still affected by the aggravated nerve he suffered at the French Open in May. It forced him to sit out two months earlier this season, although he recovered and reached the final of the U.S. Open … Top-seeded Kim Clijsters took another step in her bid to regain the No. 1 ranking, beating Italy’s Francesca Schiavone 6-4, 7-5 Friday to reach the semifinals of the Fortis Championships. The Belgian, seeking her fifth title in Luxembourg, will next play fourth-seeded Nathalie Dechy of France. Dechy defeated fifth-seeded Daniela Hantuchova of Slovakia 6-1, 6-4 in the quarterfinals. — From wire reports 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Underpass will be wildlife corridor link

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The underpass would link 4,600 acres of protected habitat to the west and 14,000 acres to the east. Animals would cross underneath the road through a 10-by-20-foot metal tunnel. Conservationists say animal movement is important to maintaining healthy populations and genetic diversity. Roads will be reduced to one lane in each direction during construction at the site, on Harbor Boulevard about 1,000 feet south of Wellington Lane. The work is expected to be finished around January, according to the Los Angeles County Department of Public Works. Students and faculty from Cal State Fullerton have been monitoring the numbers of wildlife killed at the crossing. Paul Stapp, assistant professor of biology at Cal State Fullerton, said his graduate student, David Elliott, has been driving the road and counting roadkill for more than a year. LA HABRA HEIGHTS — Construction on a $1.2 million wildlife underpass is slated to begin next week, offering coyotes, opossums and bobcats the chance to cross Harbor Boulevard without the threat of being hit by traffic. Conservationists are touting the underpass as an important link in a 31-mile wildlife corridor stretching from the Cleveland National Forest to the Whittier Narrows area. “We want to reduce animal mortality on the road and make it safer for people driving on Harbor Boulevard,” said Andrea Gullo, director of the Puente Hills Landfill Native Habitat Preservation Authority. Gullo said animals have been known to use drainage culverts to cross freeways elsewhere. Along the stretch of Harbor Boulevard where the underpass will be built, he counted 15 animals since July 2004, including several coyotes, opossums, skunks and a bobcat. He said the number of wildlife killed along that two-mile stretch was higher than in any other sites in the area. “There is so much development around here, this is a constricted point. There is a real narrowing of open space,” Stapp said. — Shirley Hsu can be reached at (626) 962-8811, Ext. 2306, or by e-mail at shirley.hsu@sgvn.com.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more