The Government of Liberia says it is expecting two distinguished guests today in the persons of U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Rajiv Shah and Foreign Minister of Norway, Børge Brende to assess the Ebola situation in Liberia and other infected countries in the sub-region.According to a US State Department release, Mr. Shah is currently on a 5-day visit to West Africa, specifically Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, and Senegal from October 13-17, to meet with national and local officials, aid organizations, and staff coordinating the international response to the Ebola outbreak in the sub-region. USAID is helping to coordinate an aggressive U.S. Government response to the Ebola outbreak that leverages broad expertise and personnel from several federal departments and agencies, including the Departments of Defense, Health and Human Services, and State, as well as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.Administrator Rajiv Shah began leadership of USAID a few days before the earthquake in Haiti in January 2010. He is generally credited for leading a very successful effort in assisting Haiti recover through a very swift and effective response. It is expected that Administrator Shah will bring the same vision and strategic response to the fight against Ebola. Rajiv Shah previously served as Under Secretary of Research, Education and Economics (REE) and Chief Scientist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.Norway’s Foreign Minister Brende, for his part, will get a firsthand look and briefing on the outbreak and its effect on the country. He is expected to renew Norway’s commitment to assisting Liberia with Ebola, as well as his country’s partnership beyond Ebola. Minister Brende, who is also Councilor of State, presides over the Ministry which is responsible for trade, foreign aid and cooperation with international organizations, among other things. He belongs to the Conservative Party and previously served in the Norwegian government as Minister of the Environment and as Minister of Trade and Industry.During a high-level Ebola Crisis Event held in connection with the World Bank annual meetings in Washington, D.C. last week, Minister, Børge Brende on Thursday, October 9, pledged well over US$10 million toward a new multi-donor fund for the fight against Ebola set up by the World Bank. “It is positive that the World Bank is setting up a fund to put the health sector in the affected countries in a better position to deal with the crisis. Norway will contribute NOK 70 million (well over US$10 million) to the fund,” said Minister Børge Brende at the event. Earlier that week, the Norwegian Government doubled its funding for the fight against Ebola, bringing Norway’s contribution up to a total of NOK 184 million. With the addition of this pledge to the new fund, Norway’s support will amount to NOK 254 million (nearly US$40 million).According to Liberia’s Information Minister Lewis Brown, the Government of Liberia intends to engage both officials regarding support to communities in terms of community care centers, increase public awareness, and to seek continued support for rebuilding of the nation’s public health system.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has fined a Pomeroon coconut company $1 million for dumping shells and husks into the tributaries of the Pomeroon River.Charity wharf which sits on the Pomeroon riverFat Boy Coconut Ventures, which is managed by Alphonso and Sons Enterprise, has reportedly dumped an estimated 15,000 coconut shells into the canals that flow into the Pomeroon River.Residents along the communities in the Pomeroon River have condemned the daily dumping of the shells and husks. As such, the EPA has been called in to address the issue for the past two years.The shells and husks are a major contributor to flooding and more so, it poses a hazard to the waterways, since residents rely on the river for their livelihood.Officers of the EPA had since visited the area and had warned of the consequences if they do not desist from dumping the waste.This reportedly continued and as such, the sanctions were imposed. The company has agreed to pay the fine within 30 days, which comes to an end on July 31.The company has now embarked on a new initiative to recycle the coconut shells. This comes weeks after the agency hosted a two-day meet the public event which was specially organised in recognition of the fact that most of the agency’s business was conducted by business persons and complainants.The event was part of the agency’s 23rd anniversary celebration and the World Environment Day and was deemed a huge success since more than one hundred people visited the booth and interacted with agents of the EPA.The EPA, as the country’s leading regulatory agency, has the responsibility to ensure that the public is informed about environmental issues to promote public participation in matters of environmental management and biodiversity conservation.
Former Newcastle full-back Olivier Bernard has come to the defence of Alan Pardew, telling talkSPORT the under-fire boss doesn’t deserve the criticism currently being thrown at him by supporters.An angry Toon Army were vocal with calls for the boss’ axe during the side’s dreadful 4-0 defeat at Southampton on Saturday.Newcastle have failed to record a win so far this season and currently sit rock bottom of the Premier League with just two points.However, Bernard – a key member of Bobby Robson’s successful Magpies side in the early 2000’s – believes a series of key player exits and early injuries have not been kind to Pardew.Asked if the criticism of the manager is fair, the ex-defender told Drivetime: “No, definitely not.“I wouldn’t judge Pardew before he has his best starting XI available to him, but the question is whether he is the man capable of galvanising the team to start winning games?“Newcastle are a club that should be pushing for Europe and seeing them at the bottom of the table is wrong.“But when you lose players like Siem de Jong, who should be their new captain really because he’s their most mature player now, it’s a big blow for the team.“There’s nothing Pardew can do about that and together with the departure of Yohan Cabaye in January, when your main playmaker leaves you know it’s going to be difficult.”The arrival of Ajax captain De Jong this summer was a major coup for the club, who were hit hard by the departure of star man Cabaye to PSG in January.However, the Dutch forward only played three games in a black and white shirt before being sidelined, while Hatem Ben Arfa and Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, both major members of the Magpies squad, left on transfer deadline day.And after a summer of change, with a total of nine arrivals and eight departures at St James’ Park, Bernard has called for Pardew to have more control over the club’s transfers.He added: “I don’t think Alan Pardew has any real power over the sale of his players and that’s a problem.“With Ben Arfa and Mbiwa joining Cabaye in leaving, all of Newcastle’s best players have gone.“They’ve maybe made too many changes over the summer, the new players need time to adapt to the English game and that’s where the problem lies.“They only replaced players who left, they didn’t bring in any additional support, and until they address that and strengthen the squad they will continue to struggle.”
In a first, all the 10 participating teams of the upcoming ODI World Cup will have a dedicated anti-corruption officer attached with it to deliver a corruption-free tournament, according to a report.The report in the ‘Daily Telegraph’ said the ICC will attach an anti-corruption official with each team starting from warm-up matches till the end of the tournament.”Previously, the International Cricket Council’s Anti-Corruption Unit had personnel deployed at each venue, meaning that teams would deal with a number of officials over the course of a tournament,” the report said.”Now, the same official will be assigned to a team from the warm-up matches to the end of the competition, staying in the same hotel as the players and travelling with them to training and matches.”It said the move was part of ICC Anti-Corruption Unit’s effort to deliver a fixing and corruption-free World Cup and also an effort to build better relations between players and the ACU.”By being with teams throughout the competition, it is also thought that anti-corruption officials will be better placed to spot any potential corruptors who lurk near players or back-room staff and so identify any behaviour that may be suspicious,” the report further stated.Also Read | Sunil Gavaskar picks transformed England as favourites to win World Cup