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Flying Fijians seeking big improvement

first_imgThe Wallabies defeated the Pacific Nations Cup holders 37-14 in Melbourne, with Suva-born Henry Speight and Israel Folau both scoring twice for the home side.The Flying Fijians were kept scoreless until Vereniki Goneva found the tryline in the 62nd minute before Timoci Nagusa added another consolation four minutes from full-time.John McKee said it was a frustrating start to the international window.”We did a lot of quite good things in the game but on the scoreline for us it was disappointing,” he said.”We’ve got things to work on but I think we can take a lot of positives from that game for the rest of our series going forward.”We had enough ball in that game to do very well but we didn’t execute as well as we needed to – certainly our conversion rate of possession to points was poor in comparison to the Wallabies.”The Flying Fijians have a chance to rectify their mistakes on home soil against Italy this Saturday.The teams last test was also in Suva, three years ago, where the home side defeated the Azzurri 25-14.John McKee believed the gap between tier one and tier two nations was closing and said Italy presented a completely different challenge to Australia.”We need to play those games to get better,” he said.”We’re sort of the top ranked tier two team but we do know that there is a big step up in the performance required to be successful against the tier one nations.”John McKee said some more players have joined them in camp this week after playing in the French Top 14 playoffs and he will continue to rotate his squad in the build up to next month’s Rugby World Cup qualifiers against Tonga and Samoa. Photo: AFP Fiji’s Kini Murimurivalu tries to tackle Australia’s Israel Folau.last_img read more

No review of ExxonMobil contract – President Granger

first_imgJust over one week after Presidential Adviser on Petroleum, Dr Jan Mangal said Government can review and renegotiate the Production Sharing Agreement (PSA) with ExxonMobil, President David Granger on Monday said Cabinet does not intend to do such at this time. He noted that the PSA is currently engaging the attention of Cabinet and a decision would be made.“The contract is an agreement between two parties and these things have to be portrayed carefully. There is no prospect at the said time that it is the intention of Cabinet to review it (the contract) but as I said, it is before Cabinet,” Granger said as he spoke to reporters on the sidelines of the swearing in ceremony of acting Justice of Appeal, Rafiq Turhan Khan.But Dr Mangal told reporters on the sidelines of an oil and gas forum at the University of Guyana last Wednesday that when situations change and one party to a contract is dissatisfied with the contract it has with another, then amendments can be made. He was at the time referring to the oil contract between Guyana and ExxonMobil, criticising the low royalty, tax exemption and large concession given to the US oil company.Under the renegotiated agreement, Guyana receives two per cent royalty on earnings from ExxonMobil’s oil sales while the US oil giant would not be required to pay taxes on its share of the profits and according to the President’s Petroleum Adviser, that is low compared to global standards. He also raised concerns about the system used to negotiate that agreement and also the expertise of the persons doing the negotiating.Former Attorney General Anil Nandlall called the President’s statement an abomination and a slap in the face of the Guyanese people. He noted that the PSA is the most important contract entered into by any Government since Independence and called for the immediate review of the agreement since there are several analysis of the agreement that supports that view.“It is pellucid to any sensible Government that this contract was a badly negotiated contract… any government that has the people’s interest at heart would want to ensure that Guyana’s interest and the people’s interest are paramount and if that contract does not make those interests paramount then a government would want to have that contract rectified,” Nandlall said in a invited comment.“This Government seems to be acting in the best interest of ExxonMobil and not Guyana and everything they have said and done thereafter is supportive of that posture. Therefore, the President’s latest disclosure confirms and corroborates that posture,” he added.He further stated that the contract is riddled with illegalities and contravenes certain sections of the law.Based on the 1999 agreement and the new 2017 deal, ExxonMobil is controlling the entire Stabroek Block of about 600 blocks or 10 times more than what Guyana’s laws allow. However, the oil and gas expert noted that allocating such a huge chunk is contrary to international best practice and creates unfair competition. Additionally, since the controversial statements were made, the Government has since indicated that Dr Mangal is not authorised to speak on behalf of the President and Cabinet.last_img read more

Qatar World Cup worker dies at 2022 stadium

first_img“His next of kin has been informed and the relevant Qatari and Nepali authorities have been notified,” said the committee in a statement posted on its website.“An investigation has been launched and further details about the incident will be released in due course.”It added that it “shares its deepest condolences with the family at this time”.No further details about the incident were given.Al Wakrah is one of the eight venues proposed for the controversial Qatar World Cup in four years’ time and was designed by renowned architect Zaha Hadid.Previously, another Nepalese labourer also died at Al Wakrah while working.Anil Kumar Pasman, 29, lost his life after being struck by a lorry in October 2016 at the venue.Tuesday’s tragedy is thought to be the first reported death at a Qatar World Cup venue since British construction worker Zac Cox plunged to his death at the Khalifa International Stadium in January 2017.A subsequent inquest by a British coroner accused managers of providing the 40-year-old with sub-standard equipment and said the working environment was “downright dangerous”.Qatari World Cup officials and European construction companies at Khalifa were also criticised for the lack of information provided to Cox’s family.Qatar’s World Cup has long been dogged by allegations of mistreatment of workers, with one union claiming 1,200 people had been killed working on projects for the 2022 tournament, a claim denied by officials in Doha.0Shares0000(Visited 3 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000The Al Wakrah Stadium is one of eight proposed venues for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar © AFP/File / KARIM JAAFARDOHA, Qatar, Aug 14 – A 23-year-old Nepalese World Cup labourer in Qatar died Tuesday while working on one of the venues for the 2022 tournament, officials in Doha announced in a statement.An investigation has been launched after the man was killed “while working at the Al Wakrah Stadium project site”, Qatar’s World Cup organising body, the Supreme Committee for Delivery and Legacy said.last_img read more