Saving Monrovians from Floods

first_imgQuite recently we published an editorial urging the Ministries of Public Works and Health and Social Welfare and the Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation (LWSC) to develop a joint task force to deal with the problems of floods and drainages in Monrovia and elsewhere in the country.We continue to be of the strong opinion that these “three horses of Trioka” have both the capacity and mandate to do something decisive to fix this perennial problem, which affects tens of thousands of city dwellers every Rainy Season.  Public Works has the yellow machines to do the digging, clearing and the engineers to determine how the rain water settles in one place, such as across the road from the Old Road intersection near the President’s home on Tubman Boulevard, and elsewhere.In the case of the 20-24th Streets in Sinkor, especially the area near the John F. Kennedy Medical Center, there are thousands of people living in the marshland (swamp)  immediately behind the hospital, just next to the Atlantic Ocean.The hospital authorities have repeatedly advised these people to move from the area, first because the land belongs to JFK and second because these people do not have the resources to transform that marshy area into firm ground on which to build solid houses.The Ministry of Public Works has known about this problem for years, ever since the 1960s when the JFK was being built.  But that Ministry seems to have had a perennial problem creating and enforcing zoning laws. Public Works is, therefore, chiefly responsible for the building chaos in Monrovia, Paynesville and other suburbs, where people have for decades built anywhere the please, and planted any kind of structure, whether zinc or cardboard shack or mud house right next to someone’s US$150,000 concrete residence.  And nobody cares.Such is the situation in the marshland in the rear of the JFK, where this Ministry, Public Works, seems powerless to do anything about. Then when the trouble comes, as it predictably does every Rainy Season, the people scream at the government for doing nothing to help them.  And yet, it is, by their own admission, which was relayed to our reporter Joachim Sendolo two days ago, largely their fault because they   remove even manholes belonging to the Water and Sewer Corporation, to plant their structures thereon.  Reporter Sendolo, in interviews conducted Monday morning with flood victims, quoted many asconfessing that their people remove manhole drainage tops to sell to scrap dealers, then plant their structures on the manhole space.This newspaper has always, in desperation, asked, What kind of people are we, who behave as though we do not want development?  It is not only unpatriotic slum dwellers that steal the aluminum from light poles to sell to scrap dealers in Monrovia and as far as Ganta; it is also people who build their shacks in the path of drainages and on precious wetlands who behave as though they care less about development or order or zoning regulations that are designed to bring some character and sanity to city development.As for Water and Sewer, Mr. Allen, the Managing Director, too, has a team of engineers who can scout Monrovia, especially the water-logged areas, and study the arteries of the earth to determine where water is likely to settle or pass when it rains. Does LWSC have a hydrological engineer?  If not, it is about time you hire one, or scout the schools and find talented young people to go study hydrological engineering.We reiterate our plea to all these technical GOL Ministries and Agencies to awake, come to grips with the fact that they have over the war years lost to safety and greener pastures most or all of the people they had trained.  Now these Ministries and Agencies are called to scout the schools and colleges for talent to train in civil, water and related or relevant engineering fields.Meanwhile, as the Rainy Season is upon us, what, in this eleventh hour, can Public Works and Water and Sewer do to alleviate the pain and suffering of slum dwellers and others who, by their own intransigence, have put themselves in harm’s way to suffer the wrath of the water?Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Atlanta Trade Mission to Visit Montego Bay in October

first_imgA trade delegation from Atlanta is to visit Montego Bay in October, as part of efforts to deepen the trading relationship between the sister cities.The team, to be led by Mayor of Atlanta, Kasim Reid, will comprise 12 top business executives from the capital of the American state of Georgia.Mayor Reid gave the commitment for the visit during talks with the Mayor of Montego Bay, Councillor Glendon Harris on Tuesday, May 21, at Atlanta City Hall, downtown Atlanta.Mayor Harris was leading a six-person delegation to the city comprising members of the Montego Bay Parish Council, the Atlanta/Montego Bay Sister-Cities Committee, and the Montego Bay Chamber of Commerce and Industry.“I believe that a trade mission from Atlanta to the city of Montego Bay will be beneficial to both cities. I think the economic potential that are available in Montego Bay and Atlanta and by extension, Jamaica, is just extraordinary,” Mayor Reid said.He pointed out that the Atlanta trade delegation will be looking at various investment opportunities in Montego Bay in the areas of manufacturing, information technology, tourism, real estate, among others.Mayor Reid stated that the trade mission will coincide with the 20th Atlanta/Montego Bay Sister-Cities Health Mission in October, at which time, he will have an opportunity to see the work that is being done by the medical team.He promised to provide more support for the health mission, which has benefitted more than 50,000 Jamaicans in western parishes over its 19-year history.The Atlanta Mayor also commended the Government of Jamaica for the upgrading of the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay, which is now a world class facility and said the city is willing to offer technical assistance for further improvements.Mayor Harris, in welcoming the Atlanta trade mission, said it will help to strengthen the 30-year sister cities relationship between Atlanta and Montego Bay.He requested support from his counterpart in promoting and marketing the Montego Bay Convention Centre, as well as the Catherine Hall Sports Complex, and the Trelawny Stadium in Falmouth, Trelawny.Both Mayors held discussions on a wide range of topics, including tourism, cultural and educational exchanges, strengthening the relationship of both cities, the training of firefighting personnel, improving service delivery, and solid waste management.The Montego Bay team arrived in Atlanta on Saturday, May 18, for a four-day visit at the invitation of Mayor Reid.They attended a joint sister-cities meeting, where they met with representatives of the Atlanta Convention and Visitors Bureau, members of the Atlanta City Council and held discussions with the representatives of the Atlanta Solid Waste Department and representatives of the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce.Atlanta’s Fire Chief, Kelvin Cochran Harris, during a meeting, committed to offering specialised training in various areas of fire and rescue, in addition to establishing an exchange programme where firefighters could travel to either city for technical experience.The delegation included Secretary/Manager, St. James Parish Council, Gerald Lee; Chairman of the Civic and Community Affairs Committee, Councillor Suzette Brown; Chairman of the Atlanta/Montego Bay Sister-Cities Committee, Fred Smith; Andre Dixon and Mary Chambers from the Atlanta/Montego Bay Sister-Cities Committee; and, Personal Assistant to Mayor Harris, Cheryl Royal.Contact: Derrick A. Scottlast_img read more

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Parents Urged to Start Saving Early for Children’s Tertiary Education

first_img Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, is urging parents and guardians to start saving early for their children’s tertiary education. “It shows that you believe that they are going to make it to college and if you believe it, they will believe it. It doesn’t matter how little you are saving; if you put down a little bit and say ‘this is your college fund, so this means you are going to college,’ they will make it happen,” he said. Minister Green was speaking at the Public Sector Employees Co-operative Credit Union’s 14th Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) awards ceremony at the St. Stephen’s United Church, Cross Roads, Kingston, on Wednesday (Aug. 15) Minister of State in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, is urging parents and guardians to start saving early for their children’s tertiary education.“It shows that you believe that they are going to make it to college and if you believe it, they will believe it. It doesn’t matter how little you are saving; if you put down a little bit and say ‘this is your college fund, so this means you are going to college,’ they will make it happen,” he said.Minister Green was speaking at the Public Sector Employees Co-operative Credit Union’s 14th Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) awards ceremony at the St. Stephen’s United Church, Cross Roads, Kingston, on Wednesday (Aug. 15)He said saving for tertiary education is an important investment that will enable children to realise their career aspirations in the 21st century job market.“Secondary school is not enough, the jobs that they used to get when they leave secondary school, by the time they are finished with high school, a lot of (those jobs) don’t exist,” he argued.The State Minister further stressed the need for parents to be involved in their children’s school life.“Do you pay attention to what your child is doing in school? Do you ask them about their homework? Do you ensure that it is done?” he questioned.State Minister Green commended the GSAT award recipients and implored them as they go on to high school, to surround themselves with positive people, who mean them well, find their passion and take pride in themselves.A total of 74 students received education grants totalling $1 million from the Public Sector Employees Co-operative Credit Union.The entity’s Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Tamara Maxwell-Green, said that since 2004, more than 600 students have benefited from financial assistance valued at $12.6 million.She congratulated the students on their achievement, adding that the credit union strongly believes in supporting the youth and investing in their education.“We offer financial literacy programmes to help students and parents get a firm grasp on all the various financial weights that come with education. Our goal is to help you make the right decisions for your children’s future from both a financial and education perspective,” she said.The credit union’s GSAT awards provide support to members’ children to meet some of the cost of their secondary schooling. Story Highlightslast_img read more

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Inquest begins into death of Yukon woman 60 doctors thought died of

first_imgAPTN National NewsAn inquest looking into the death of a Yukon woman, 60, started Wednesday in Whitehorse.Mary Johnny died of a bowl obstruction.But doctors initially believed the cause was alcoholism.APTN’s Shirley McLean has more.last_img

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From Chinese girl to chicken roll Heres how racism is still prevalent

first_imgGetty ImagesUS President Donald Trump has been slammed across the world for his xenophobic attacks against people he perceives as outsiders. In a barrage of tweets, Trump had written that those (referring to four women democratic congresswomen) who don’t like the US should go back. Three out of four of them were born in the United States.What many don’t know is that while this is xenophobia on a larger scale, racism exists across the world. A BusinessTech report said that India is the second most racist country in the world with 60 percent of the population facing racism by their own countrymen. One Twitter user from India also tweeted a story of a little girl who was teased by her friends due to her appearance. One boy allegedly called her a ‘Chinese girl’ and another called her a ‘chicken roll’.”This is my friend’s Instagram account, which she runs in her daughter’s voice. The experiences of a child growing up in Bangalore. Ching lives in Bangalore. Yesterday she spoke to her mum about casual racism in her school bus, among kids. #bengaluru #bangalore,” Sabbah Haji Baji, a Twitter user wrote.Sabbah attached two photos of an Instagram post which the little girl’s mother runs for her. In the post, the mother wrote in the girl’s voice, “My school bus is a privately owned and operated school bus because the school’s buses don’t pick up KG kids and drives students only from Std. 1. So we have students from Joseph’s Boys, Cotton Boys, Sacred Heart Girls in my bus.”She went on to say, “One day, I told mum that the boys in my bus are naughty on our way back home. One called me “Chinese Girl” and the other one called me “chicken roll”. I didn’t like it. It wasn’t nice.”The girl went on to say that her parents made her feel better. In a P.S., the girl said, “If you’re the one teasing people or calling people names, STOP IT. It’s not nice.”This is my friend’s Instagram account, which she runs in her daughter’s voice. The experiences of a child growing up in Bangalore.Ching lives in Bangalore. Yesterday she spoke to her mum about casual racism in her school bus, among kids. #bengaluru #bangalore pic.twitter.com/9JhfbnMPeq— Sabbah Haji Baji (@imsabbah) July 25, 2019 What was sad was that students who are barely five or six years of age said this which shows how the parents and other elders in their lives address those who do not look like them.In India, people are constantly made fun of their looks, if they do not look like how Indians normally do. Many are called “Chinki”, “Momos seller”, “drug dealer” and if the person is dark, they are outright called ugly.Migrants from Africa are also discriminated against and even subjected to racial violence. For example, in March 2017, a disturbing video surfaced of a mob of men attacking a group of Nigerian students in a mall in Greater Noida. The violence increased rapidly when they were beaten up with steel rods and chairs.With these instance occurring at an alarming rapidity, one thing which is for sure is that Indians cannot accept those who do not look like them. When this was pointed out, an AAP MLA from Delhi said, “If we really had any problem with black people we would have never shared houses with Tamilians.”last_img read more

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5 Sources of Alternative Energy You May Not Have Heard Of

first_imgCould the mining moon provide a source of energy for Earth? Trade-offs reveal no clear favorites in alternative energy market More information: Mother Nature Network: www.mnn.com/earth-matters/ener … -never-heard-3#image (PhysOrg.com) — As fossil fuels increasingly fall out of favor, many are looking into alternative energy sources to help us power our lives with a smaller impact on the environment. You already know about solar power and wind energy, and hydro-electric power and nuclear power have been around for decades. But scientists are increasingly looking to the natural world for additional solutions. © 2010 PhysOrg.com Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: 5 Sources of Alternative Energy You May Not Have Heard Of (2010, February 4) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-02-sources-alternative-energy-heard.html Here are 5 alternative energy sources that you may hearing more of soon:• Helioculture: The idea is to create hydrocarbons with a little help from the sun. Brackish water is combined with photosynthetic organisms, nutrients and carbon dioxide and left in the sun. This process results in hydrocarbons that are ready for use a fuel — not refining necessary.• Sewage: Our waste can…reduce waste. Using microbial fuel cells, sewage can be used in bio-electrochemical systems to create power. In fact, Norway has plans to begin using human waste to power the buses in Oslo.• Evaporation: Apparently, scientists are working on ways to harness the difference in electrical properties that exist between air and water. In order to make this work, a special kind of “leaf” is micro-fabricated. Air bubbles are pumped in, and as the water evaporates, the power is captured. Although it does seem like a lot of work for what might not be too much power…• Human movement: Could the expanding planetary population actually power itself through movement? There are thoughts that piezoelectricity could be generated with the use of special tiles placed in strategic places where people walk. These tiles would be made out of materials that generate energy in response to mechanical stress applied on them. As people walked to the bus, or jogged in the park, their pressure on these tiles could produce power.• Moon: For some time, scientists have considered ways to produce Helium-3, which is a non-radioactive possibility for mostly clean energy. However, creating He-3 on earth is a real pain. However, our near neighbor, the moon, has this light isotope in abundance. Could we see mines on the moon, working to tap into this source of possible energy? Maybe. One Russian company, RKK Energiya, thinks that moon mining for Helium-3 could be a possibility by 2020.It is clear that we do need to start using our innovation to look for alternative sources of energy. It will be interesting to see which (if any) of these alternative energy sources actually become viable.last_img read more

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