JCSA calls for INSPORTS board to resign

first_img The letter highlighted that the board had failed to heed concerns pertaining to the institute’s governance and reminded its members of the Civil Service and the Ministry of Finance’s concerns that the agency is regulated by rules governing public-sector bodies, that the board is not an executive board and has no authority to revoke or appoint signing powers, cannot authorise who signs or who does not, or has any authority or privilege to sign cheques. It also objected to the board’s interference in deciding staff retirement and reassignment. “The board is acting beyond its scope and authority in removing senior staff from signing on behalf of the institute without cause,” said Grant. “Furthermore, your letter (April 14) indicates you (board) have informed the banks that staff are not to sign cheques. This is an absurd request, they (bank) cannot ignore the legitimate signatures approved by the Ministry of Finance how signatories must be assigned or removed from government accounts.” He continued: “Any decision by the administrative director is legal and binding. You have indicated that you will decide as a board who should retire or have employment extended. “To be so involved in the day to day issues of staff retirement and reassignment is another ridiculous stance as these persons are treated under the Civil Service Pensions Act,” Grant stated in his letter. Although citing the board’s instructions as “untenable”, the JCSA head advised Andrews to comply with the directives until, but specified that the administrative director cannot be held liable or responsible for any decision taken by the board. UNHEEDED CONCERNS LEADERSHIP BREACH The Jamaica Civil Service Association (JCSA) has again called for the resignation of the entire board of directors of the Institute of Sports (INSPORTS). This position, it said, was made on the grounds of a second round of attacks on the agency’s administrative director, Ian Andrews, with regard to having his signing authority removed, as well as its proposed action regarding retirement and contract extension of staff. Last year, the Don Anderson-led board rid Andrews of his signing authority – which is part of the administrative director’s job description – a decision that was overturned after a directive by the Ministry of Finance. Now, the INSPORTS board is headed in the same direction. However, the JCSA, which represents government workers, has filed a strong response. In a letter dated April 27 to board Chairman Don Anderson, President of the JCSA, O’Neil Grant, revealed that they were in receipt of two correspondents sent to Andrews (April 8th and 14th) by Anderson on behalf of the INSPORTS board. Grant raised a number of concerns and insists that the action proposed by the board is “ridiculous” and “untenable” and clearly violates the statutes and regulations applicable to government entities. “I must alert you (board) that the JSCA will be calling for the replacement of the board and particularly you (Anderson) as chairman, as we have seen where your leadership of the organisation has breached all public bodies’ guidelines, acts and regulations. Mr Andrews cannot be held liable for any decision taken by the board that he is forced to comply with, despite his declared concerns,” highlighted Grant. Efforts to reach chairman of the INSPORTS board, Anderson, for comments via telephone proved unsuccessful, as all calls went unanswered. The JCSA letter was copied to Minister of Culture, Gender Affairs, Entertainment and Sport, Olivia ‘Babsy’ Grange, Alison McLean, the ministry’s permanent secretary, Mrs. Loris Jarrett, deputy financial secretary, Ministry of Finance and Public Service, the ministry’s financial secretary, Devon Rowe, Mrs. Pamela Monroe-Ellis, auditor general, auditor general’s department, all members of the INSPORTS board and Andrews.last_img read more

LEC Loses Over US$200K in Revenues

first_imgIt has been reported that over US$200K in revenues may have been lost to power theft operators in Double Bridge Truck Garage Community, located on Somalia Drive, Monrovia, in the last eight months.LEC’s Deputy Managing Director for Commercial Services, J. Famatta Kallon Sirleaf, who led an ambush operation for more than one hour that uprooted a stockpile of cables and wires buried underground in the area, decried the “persistent theft of power in the various communities which is undermining progress in the energy sector.”She said while the LEC has introduced internal reforms to ensure effective customer support services, there are unpatriotic Liberians who are determined to frustrate LEC’s determination to ensure smooth and affordable power supply for all.“Look at the number of wires and cables pulled from this community and you will know that we have grave challenges.“We spend huge resources for fuel and other materials to provide services to consumers and yet we are frustrated because what we put out is not recouped simply because a syndicate goes on in several communities to undermine our efforts,” she lamented. Madam Sirleaf vowed to reinforce the corporation’s campaign to fight power theft. During the sting operation that also affected Amagashie Community next door, technicians, armed with shovels and ladders, dug in several locations, pulling out wires and cables and cutting off wires jammed and connected to meters on poles. Residents admitted that they are charged U$10 per individual per week by the syndicates, in an area that hosts more than 200 residents.Four meters were seized from homes and poles, with a particular meter that has been registered to someone on the Old Road Community since 2013, according to Mr. Owen Richards, who is LEC’s point man with his team responsible for uprooting power theft. “I was in this community seven months ago but did not come across this meter so it could be one of what is known as a ‘walking meter’ which people sell to others, who then take it to another community,” he said. Community residents watched the operation yesterday without incident or backlash, under the intense watch of police officers.Richards said the fight against power theft is colossal with risks of personal safety to himself and his team because many people who are aware of their work sometimes plot to harm them.Meanwhile, during yesterday’s campaign, a woman was arrested by police officers on guard with Richard’s team, when she offered L$3,000 so that her meter, which she admitted was connected by ‘someone,’ could be ignored.“She said she could give us additional money, but she admitted that she had been receiving free current,” Richards said. “Although power theft falls within economic crimes against the state, any form of punishment to offenders is not dispensed therefore those caught stealing power are not normally punished to deter others from doing the same. It makes us to look bad and we find our efforts against power theft not bearing much fruit.” Responding to Richards’ statement, DMD Sirleaf said efforts are underway to ensure that those caught stealing power are punished by law.She said there is no justification for any Liberian to steal power, because restoring power to benefit the country is a gradual process.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Transfers, demotions will not stop corruption – President

first_img…as Persaud delivers final address at annual Police ConferenceThe practice of transferring and demoting rogue elements will not bring an end to the scourge of corruption within the Guyana Police Force. This is the position of President David Granger, who delivered a stern warning to rouge elements, saying there is no place for lawlessness in the Force.Delivering the feature address at the opening of the Annual Police Officers’ Conference on Thursday, Granger noted that corruption within the law enforcement agency cannot be cured by ignoring it. He pointed out the case of the former head of the Special Weapons and Tactical (SWAT) Unit, Deputy Superintendent Mootie Dookie, who is being investigated for alcohol smugglingCommander-in-Chief President David Granger being accorded the Presidential Salute upon his arrival at the Officers’ Mess at Eve Leary for the Annual Police Conferenceand has since been “temporarily transferred” to the Force’s Strategic Unit.“Dookie’s law teaches that if corruption is concealed, it will continue. Transferring a corrupt officer from one branch to another, or posting him from one Division to another, or promoting him, or demoting him from one rank to another, cannot guarantee he will change his wicked ways,” the President said.He went on to say that senior officers turning a blind eye to corruption put the lives of not only honest Police ranks on the line but that of the public as well.According to the Head of State, a Force contaminated by corruption cannot ensure the security of citizens. Instead, he noted that the service provided must be based on values in commitment, competence and incorruptibility.To this end, President Granger posited that the Security Sector Reform, which his Administration is committed to and working on implementing, will seek to tackle this issue that is plaguing the country’s premier law enforcement agency.“I am on the side of the Police Force, I’m very confident in the Police Force (and) that is why I went through all the trouble to initiate reforms. So that the Police Force would have an easier time in combating crime, which is what I was tough on – crime,” he told reporters on the sidelines when asked about the toughness of his speech.He pointed out that Police reform is not a political gimmick but will further strengthen the Force’s ability and capability to tackle crime. He further noted that the reforms will also incorporate the lessons gathered from the planned inquiries into past mass killings during the troubled periods, starting with the Lindo Creek massacre.“Inquiries which will eventually be commissioned are intended to improve the Force’s administration and operations, they are not intended to demoralise or destabilise the Force… The authorities at that time, instead of trying to cure the cause, were more concerned about concealing the symptoms. The Force cannot change if old attitudes persist,” he asserted.Security Sector ReformAnother area President Granger added that the Security Sector Reform will also seek to strengthen is the strained relations between the Force and the public, something which he emphasised is important to crime fighting.“It is apparent that the trust between the public and the Police was damaged, more during the ‘troubles’ than any other time… Efforts must be made to rebuild public trust (and) the Security Sector Reform will strength partnerships between the Force and communities. Citizens should not consider themselves to be passive onlookers or bystanders to crime fighting,” he posited.Also highlighting the importance of public trust was Commissioner of Police Seelall Persaud, who delivered his last address to the Annual Officers’ Conference, which is being held under the theme: “Forging ahead with effective policing through strategic human resources and operational management, partnership and professionalism.”He stated that despite challenges, the Force was resilient in its crime fighting strategy. He reflected on statistics of recent years which represents an overall comparative reduction in criminal activities.“People measure the utility will be gain from justice against the time that they will have to spend in order to achieve that justice and which one weighs out will determine, whether they will report or not. Public trust is a major issue; if people don’t believe that their matter will be treated with professionally and there would be a justified outcome, then they will not be motivated to report it,” says Persaud.He went on to talk about other challenges that are on the agenda of the three-day conference, which wraps up on Saturday, such as the review of Police prosecution operations.“We have found over the years, a number of negative issues associated with those operations. So it is anticipated that there will be intense discussions regarding the development of command systems for commanders in order to achieve the control function of management. Controlling the rates of unprofessional behaviour, reducing response time, reducing investigation and prosecution backlog, will be major objectives,” the Top Cop stated.The outgoing Commissioner is set to retire in April after 30 plus years of service in the Force.last_img read more

Neymar pledges ‘lots of trophies’ to PSG fans

first_img“Thank you! I’m very happy, I’m delighted to be here for this new challenge,” said Neymar as fireworks went off around him and fans chanted his name over and again.The world’s most expensive footballer: 20 years of record transfers © AFP / Thomas SAINT-CRICQ“I want to win lots of trophies with you and I need your support to win these trophies,” added the former Barcelona and Santos star.“Paris is magic!” he said in French before calling out the club’s motto: “Ici, c’est Paris!” — Here, it’s Paris.Hopes the Brazil captain would make his debut for the club were dashed by red tape as his international transfer certificate wasn’t lodged in time with the French league, meaning he had to watch his new team-mates from the stands.He was hardly missed as PSG strolled to an easy victory with goals from South American pair Edinson Cavani and Javier Pastore, the latter whose place in the team could come under threat by Neymar.PSG had already started to recuperate part of Neymar’s mammoth transfer fee on Friday when he was officially unveiled as the most expensive player in history at 222 million euros ($264m).New Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar waves during his presentation to fans at the Parc des Princes stadium on August 5, 2017 © AFP / ALAIN JOCARDThe club sold more than 10,000 shirts with his name and No.10 on the back on Friday, bringing in around one million euros.They also expected to sell another 15,000 shirts on Saturday while a 45,000 sell-out crowd watched the opening game.And money was the subject of most of the questions fired at the Brazilian when he was unveiled to the media on Friday after arriving in the French capital on a private jet to sign a five-year contract with the Qatari-owned club.“I want something bigger, a greater challenge,” said Neymar, who is poised to earn around 30 million euros a year.– ‘Tense time’ –Neymar admitted that leaving Barcelona, where he formed part of a lethal attacking trio with Lionel Messi and Luis Suarez, was not a decision he took lightly.A Paris Saint-Germain fan shows off his Neymar shirt at the club’s store on the Champs Elysees © AFP / PHILIPPE LOPEZ“It was one of my most difficult decisions. In Barcelona I had adapted well to the city and the team,” he said.“It was a tense time, thinking about what I should do in my life.” His PSG teammate Dani Alves, who once played with Neymar at Barcelona, said the new arrival had persuaded him to move to Paris from Juventus this summer.“Contrary to what people think, it was he who advised me to sign for PSG,” said Alves after Saturday’s game. “It wasn’t me who was telling him to come here.”Neymar will become the second highest-paid player in the world — behind Carlos Tevez and his 38 million euros a year at Shanghai Shenhua but ahead of Cristiano Ronaldo’s 23.6 million euros annual salary at Real Madrid.The transfer fee shattered the previous world record of 105 million euros set by Manchester United in signing France midfielder Paul Pogba last year from Juventus.It is an eye-watering sum, but one that PSG president Nasser Al-Khelaifi insisted will eventually look like a bargain.“There are not two Neymars in the world. I would love for us to meet in two years and see what his value will be compared to today. At least double,” said Al-Khelaifi.Paris Saint-Germain’s forward Neymar (R), listens to his father Neymar Santos (L) as they watch the French L1 football match between PSG and Amiens at the Parc de Princes Stadium in Paris on August 5, 2017 © AFP / JACQUES DEMARTHON“I don’t think it’s expensive, I’m convinced we are going to earn more money with him. It’s a project of two brands: we’re associating the Neymar brand and the PSG brand.”There is scepticism at the role played by PSG’s owners Oryx Qatar Sports Investments (QSI) at a time of political crisis for the energy-rich state which has been boycotted by its Gulf neighbours in recent months and will play host to the World Cup in 2022.But on Saturday, Al-Khelaifi was focused more on success on the pitch as he hopes Neymar will help PSG win back the Ligue 1 crown they lost to Monaco last year, and finally land the coveted Champions League.“We have a great star, a great player here with us today,” he said.“Now we’re going to work hard to win lots of trophies.”0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Paris Saint-Germain’s forward Neymar looks on during his presentation to the fans at the Parc des Princes stadium in Paris on August 5, 2017 © AFP / ALAIN JOCARDParis, France, Aug 4 – Brazil superstar Neymar received a hero’s welcome from the Paris Saint-Germain faithful on Saturday as he vowed to win “lots of trophies” following his world record transfer.The 25-year-old was presented to fans at the club’s Parc des Princes stadium ahead of a 2-0 victory over Amiens in their opening Ligue 1 match of the new campaign.last_img read more

Terrorist no more

first_imgBetween the constant terrorist attacks and the horrible allegations that have come out of Haditha, the news out of Iraq has been dispiriting for a long time. And now the world’s public enemy No. 2, Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, has been brought to justice under the force of two 500-pound bombs, courtesy of the U.S. Air Force. Although victories in the War on Terror have been elusive, this one is huge – a tremendous credit to America’s intelligence gatherers and our military. Al-Zarqawi, head of al-Qaida in Iraq, was responsible for the deaths of hundreds of innocent civilians. He is believed to have personally beheaded Americans Nicholas Berg and Eugene Armstrong. And he was the brains behind the murderous Iraqi insurgency that has devastated that country. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2Iraq and the world are now better places without him, as well his aides – including spiritual adviser Sheik Abdul Rahman – who also perished in the U.S. attack. Terrorism in Iraq, and elsewhere, will no doubt continue. But with al-Zarqawi eliminated, we can hope that perhaps Iraq is one step closer to peace, and that the U.S. is one step closer to victory. 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

THE K2 LIVE BLOG: DAY 2 – LISTEN TO JASON BLACK’S LATEST MESSAGE

first_imgJason BlackAudio Playerhttps://www.donegaldaily.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/06/msg-2.wav00:0000:0000:00Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.DAY 2: Simply click on to the arrow to hear a live update for Donegal Daily from Jason Black as he prepares to climb K2.THE K2 LIVE BLOG: DAY 2 – LISTEN TO JASON BLACK’S LATEST MESSAGE was last modified: June 24th, 2015 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

How to Get Engineering Without an Engineer

first_imgThe study of complex systems is all the rage these days (see, for example, 08/18/2003 entry).  In the Jan. 28 issue of Nature,1 J. M. Ottino (Northwestern University) mixes up biology with human design in his Concepts essay on “Engineering complex systems.”    “Complex systems,” he explains, “can be identified by what they do (display organization without a central organizing authority – emergence), and also by how they may or may not be analysed (as decomposing the system and analysing sub-parts do not necessarily give a clue as to the behaviour of the whole).”  In the list of examples he provides, the juxtaposition of human-engineered and biological systems is so subtle as to mask the differences: “Systems that fall within the scope of complex systems include metabolic pathways, ecosystems, the web [e.g., the internet world-wide-web], the US power grid and the propagation of HIV infections.”  He does clarify, however, that “Many examples of complex networks that have greatly impacted our lives – such as highways, electrification and the Internet – derive from engineering.”  Presumably, some do not.  He draws additional contrasts:The hallmarks of complex systems are adaptation, self-organization and emergence – no one designed the web or the metabolic processes within a cell.  And this is where the conceptual conflict with engineering arises.  Engineering is not about letting systems be.  Engineering is about making things happen, about convergence, optimum design and consistency of operation.  Engineering is about assembling pieces that work in specific ways – that is, designing complicated systems.Ottino explains that complex and complicated are not one and the same.  Complicated is more like the intelligent design terminology of “irreducibly complex”.  In the tradition of Paley, his illustration is a watch with over 1000 parts working together.  Then he explains,The pieces in complicated systems can be well understood in isolation, and the whole can be reassembled from its parts.  The components work in unison to accomplish a function.  One key defect can bring the entire system to a halt; complicated systems do not adapt.  Redundancy needs to be built in when system failure is not an option.Complex systems, on the other hand, do adapt, he claims: the hallmarks are adaptation (ability to change to match changing conditions), self-organization (ability to arrange parts unassisted), and emergence (new properties come to light which were not necessarily predicted, but represent a whole greater than the sum of the parts).  The Web, for instance, has taken on a life of its own that exceeds what its original designers expected.  Engineering went into the design of the parts, but not the whole: “But although engineers may have developed the components, they did not plan their connection.”  Is there a place for engineering in the ongoing adaptation of a complex system?How can engineers, who have developed many of the most important complex systems, stay connected with their subsequent development?  Complexity and engineering seem at odds – complex systems are about adaptation, whereas engineering is about purpose.  However, it is robustness and failure where both camps merge.By this, he means that engineers can design robustness into a complex system by designing redundancy and performing risk analysis at the outset, or as the system grows.  Engineers might also be able to leverage self-organization: by steering the properties of molecular subunits, for example, in the rapidly expanding field of nanotechnology.  Still, these examples all involve intelligent foresight.  What about the adaptation in living things?    Ottino barely touches on biological complex systems, but thinks the environment can optimize adaptation (this is known in the literature as “niche construction”):But the choice need not be just between designing everything at the outset and letting systems design themselves.  Most design processes are far from linear, with multiple decision points and ideas ‘evolving’ before the final design ‘emerges’.  However, once finished, the design itself does not adapt.  Here, engineers are beginning to get insight from biology.  The emergence of function – the ability of a system to perform a task – can be guided by its environment, without imposing a rigid blueprint.  For example, just like the beaks of Darwin’s finches, a finite-element analysis of a component shape such as an airfoil can evolve plastically through a continuum of possibilities under a set of constraints, so as to optimize the shape for a given function.Ottino does not elaborate, but presumably he feels that natural selection chooses the optimum design from the continuum of possibilities.    The essay ends with these vague suggestions, because no laws of self-organization are known, most of the discoveries are in future tense:Despite significant recent advances in our understanding of complex systems, the field is still in flux, and there is still is a lack of consensus as to where the centre is – for some, it is exclusively cellular automata; for others it is networks.  However, the landscape is bubbling with activity, and now is the time to get involved.  Engineering should be at the centre of these developments, and contribute to the development of new theory and tools.1J.M. Ottino, “Engineering complex systems,” Nature 427, 399 (29 January 2004); doi:10.1038/427399a.“No one designed the … metabolic processes within a cell.”  Interesting.  Could you elaborate, Dr. Ottino?  Tell us how you know this.    There is a fundamental disconnect in Ottino’s logic.  His comparison of biological with artificial complex systems is largely an argument from analogy built on a priori assumptions that Darwinism is true.  In keeping with the perennial sin of Darwinists, he merely assumes biological complex systems “emerged” (they just love that word) without engineering, and then both categories of systems continue to evolve and adapt without engineering.  But even in his examples of artificial complex systems lacking a central authority – the web and the power grid – intelligent design continues to be essential. For instance, the original designers of the internet protocol or small power plants may not have foreseen the ways their networks would grow, and what new emergent properties might arise, but at every step of the “evolution” of the complex systems human engineers are and were involved.  Left to itself, without the input of human intelligence, the power grid would have collapsed with the first solar storm or substation fire.  Human engineers had to fix the problems and retrofit robustness into it.  Similarly, WWW designers probably did not foresee the evils of viruses and spam (sinister examples of intelligent design), but a host of new engineers have responded with anti-virus software and alert mechanisms to help the network adapt.  How much more are all the beneficial emergent functions of the web, such as videoconferencing, web shopping and auctions, guided by human ingenuity?The adaptation in man-made complex systems has always been guided by intelligent design.  The more the robustness and resiliency, the greater the intelligence, and the more praiseworthy the design.    In biological complex systems (e.g., metabolic pathways, protein networks, gene regulation) how could resiliency and adaptation exist without prior engineering design?  Ottino cannot just wave the usual magic wand of natural selection.  He needs to do a rigorous analysis.  What mutations in what specific genes could have converged into a wing or a beak where one never existed before?  Without scientific rigor, it is not science; it is just-so storytelling filled with glittering generalities.    He described beautifully the concept of irreducible complexity in “complicated” systems, but failed to recognize that such systems exist now, fully-formed, in the simplest one-celled organisms.  He cannot invoke self-organizational principles, because he admitted there are no known laws of self-organization.  He cannot commit the post hoc fallacy by claiming, “they exist, therefore they evolved” by natural selection (though he comes just shy of stating this).  And he did not connect the dots with niche construction.  If it were possible for the environment to constrain adaptation, how, or why, would a living organism (e.g., a Darwin finch) care to evolve toward an optimum design?  That would commit the foul of teleology.    So what remains?  Miracles.  Ottino speaks of “emergence” as a characteristic of complex systems, and glibly assumes that the emergence of new perfectly-adapted functions in living systems will just happen.  No, it won’t.  Appealing to unknown laws in future tense is not science, and does not belong in a scientific journal.  Everything we know points away from the emergence of optimum adaptability unless engineering design is involved.  Think about it: why would a finch evolve a wing or a beak with its perfectly-adapted airfoil design, unless it really was designed by a Designer that understood aerodynamics?  The environment is not going to teach the bird, and the bird couldn’t care less.  Purge your mind of teleology, purge it of orthogenesis (straight-line evolution toward a goal), purge it of wish fulfillment, as a consistent naturalist should do, and it doesn’t make sense.  Darwinism survives only with a schizophrenia we might term “naturalistic vitalism,” which assumes our material universe contains some unexplained, unknown, vital force that makes a finch want to fly.  The resulting perfect airfoil doesn’t need a scientific explanation.  It just “emerges.”  Welcome to the mythology of modern science, where miracles, while overtly denied, covertly come in very handy.(Visited 16 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

Photo library: Countryside 26

first_img{loadposition tc}Click on a thumbnail for a low-resolution image, or right-click on the link below it to download a high-resolution copy of the image.» Download Countryside contact sheet (1.6MB) » Download full image library contact sheet (10.5MB) Mpumalanga province: A dramatic sky as a summer storm develops.Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Mpumalanga province: Cultivated farm lands as seen from the air. Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Mpumalanga province: An aerial view of the waterfall on the Olifants River alongside the town of Waterval-Boven.Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Mpumalanga province: An aerial view of the waterfall on the Olifants River alongside the town of Waterval-Boven.Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Mpumalanga province: An aerial view of the town of MachadodorpPhoto: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Mpumalanga province: Sappi forestry plantations in the Lydenburg area.Photo: Graeme Williams,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com» Download high-res image Mpumalanga province: Sappi forestry plantations in the Lydenburg area.Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com» Download high-res image A wind pump at sunset, near Mopani in the Kruger National Park, Limpopo province. Photo: MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Limpopo province: The fence on the border between Zimbabwe and South Africa, just north of Musina.Photo: Graeme Williams, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res imageCOUNTRYSIDE 26: {loadposition cs}Having trouble downloading high-resolution images? Queries about the image library? Email Janine Erasmus at janinee@mediaclubsouthafrica.com.last_img read more

Umgeni Water gets €35m European loan

first_img6 December 2011The European Investment Bank (EIB) is to provide €35-million (R385-million) in long-term funding to South African water board Umgeni Water, enabling it to continue providing clean water to about five-million people in Durban and surrounding areas, as well as to provide new water connections to unserved areas.The projects are part of Umgeni Water’s capital expenditure infrastructure programme, and will also involve the installation of new bulk water pipelines and expansion of water treatment plants, pumping stations and service reservoirs.The initiative will involve upgrading water supply networks and treatment facilities to enable increased provision of water.“The Umgeni Water projects will assure and improve access to water for over a million households across KwaZulu-Natal,” EIB vice-president Plutarchos Sakellaris said in a statement this week.“At a time when the world’s leaders are gathering in Durban to address the challenges posed by a changing climate, acknowledging the importance of ensuring the availability of clean water in dry regions is essential.”First loan to a water boardThe granting of the loan to Umgeni Water is historic, as it is the first loan to be made to a South African water board by the EIB.“The European Investment Bank has an in-depth understanding of the pressing service delivery needs of our country and the importance of ensuring water supply in the region,” said Umgeni Water GM Nica Gevers. “We are delighted that the negotiations have been successfully concluded, which will now enable us to move ahead with the projects with vigour.”The loan will complement the financial support provided to the Trans-Caledon Tunnel Authority and funding for the eThekwini Metropolitan Municipality (Greater Durban) for the construction of the Spring Grove Dam and the replacement of water mains and installation of new pipelines in the eThekwini region.Investment in African water projectsThe EIB is working with key partners across South Africa to enable increased investment across the country’s entire water system and contributed towards the achievement of Millennium Development Goals in the country.Previous South African water projects funded by the European Investment Bank include the Berg Water dam supplying Cape Town, Vaal Dam reservoir and pipeline supplying Johannesburg and the South African component of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project.Since 2000, the EIB has provided over €531-million of funding for water projects across in Africa. In southern Africa this has included projects in Lesotho, Mozambique, Tanzania, Swaziland, Botswana and South Africa.SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Box.net: New Features and a New Phrase for the Cloud

first_img3 Areas of Your Business that Need Tech Now We’re curious about the ability to embed files anywhere on a Web site. It seems like we are seeing the next generation of the extranet, where files and documents can be shared in a player that people can access online. This can be helpful as most anyone can access online documents. But to download them poses issues for the enterprise and end user. The enterprise does not always want its documents to be downloaded. Often, the person viewing the document would prefer just to view it online.The workforce is changing. More people are working at home. Smartphones make it easier to get to documents, email and all the productivity and collaboration applications available to us. At IBM’s Lotusphere conference, we talked to one senior IT executive who said that collaboration applications are a necessity as about 10% of its 380,000 employees now work at home.And that’s the value and huge potential for services such Box.net, Google Docs and any other number of offerings from both enterprise collaboration companies and enterprise content management providers.The people at Box.net have cleverly coined a new phrase for this new hybrid environment that allows for content storage and collaboration. They call it “Cloud Content Management.” It’s jargon for sure. We’re getting to that point where buzzword bingo can make you go nuts if you have to endure it for three days at a conference like Lotusphere. But for now, it seems to work. Box.net acquired a young company last October called Increo Solutions. The company allows users to view content of most any file and the ability to share and embed files across the Web.Today, Box.net is announcing the integration of these features. Users will be able to upload and view most any file inside the Box.net environment. This is a feature similar to what Google Docs provides. What appears to be a bit different is the embedded viewer, which allows people to share and embed all types of files anywhere on the Web.That feature will be available over the next few weeks.The experience for the new service is pretty smooth. The viewer loads nicely. You can see all the files, much like you would in Google Docs. Related Posts Massive Non-Desk Workforce is an Opportunity fo… Tags:#enterprise#news#Products IT + Project Management: A Love Affair alex williams Cognitive Automation is the Immediate Future of…last_img read more