Deforestation drops in Brazil’s Atlantic Forest, but risks remain: experts

first_imgAgriculture, Amazon Conservation, Cattle, Cattle Pasture, Cattle Ranching, Controversial, Deforestation, Drivers Of Deforestation, Environment, Environmental Crime, Environmental Politics, Forests, Green, Happy-upbeat Environmental, Industrial Agriculture, Land Rights, Land Use Change, Tropical Deforestation, Zero Deforestation Commitments Article published by Karla Mendes Popular in the CommunitySponsoredSponsoredOrangutan found tortured and decapitated prompts Indonesia probeEMGIES17 Jan, 2018We will never know the full extent of what this poor Orangutan went through before he died, the same must be done to this evil perpetrator(s) they don’t deserve the air that they breathe this has truly upset me and I wonder for the future for these wonderful creatures. So called ‘Mankind’ has a lot to answer for we are the only ones ruining this world I prefer animals to humans any day of the week.What makes community ecotourism succeed? In Madagascar, location, location, locationScissors1dOther countries should also learn and try to incorporateWhy you should care about the current wave of mass extinctions (commentary)Processor1 DecAfter all, there is no infinite anything in the whole galaxy!Infinite stupidity, right here on earth.The wildlife trade threatens people and animals alike (commentary)Anchor3dUnfortunately I feel The Chinese have no compassion for any living animal. They are a cruel country that as we knowneatbeverything that moves and do not humanily kill these poor animals and insects. They have no health and safety on their markets and they then contract these diseases. Maybe its karma maybe they should look at the way they live and stop using animals for all there so called remedies. DisgustingConservationists welcome China’s wildlife trade banThobolo27 JanChina has consistently been the worlds worst, “ Face of Evil “ in regards our planets flora and fauna survival. In some ways, this is nature trying to fight back. This ban is great, but the rest of the world just cannot allow it to be temporary, because history has demonstrated that once this coronavirus passes, they will in all likelihood, simply revert to been the planets worst Ecco Terrorists. Let’s simply not allow this to happen! How and why they have been able to degrade this planets iconic species, rape the planets rivers, oceans and forests, with apparent impunity, is just mind boggling! Please no more.Probing rural poachers in Africa: Why do they poach?Carrot3dOne day I feel like animals will be more scarce, and I agree with one of my friends, they said that poaching will take over the world, but I also hope notUpset about Amazon fires last year? Focus on deforestation this year (commentary)Bullhorn4dLies and more leisSponsoredSponsoredCoke is again the biggest culprit behind plastic waste in the PhilippinesGrapes7 NovOnce again the article blames companies for the actions of individuals. It is individuals that buy these products, it is individuals that dispose of them improperly. If we want to change it, we have to change, not just create bad guys to blame.Brazilian response to Bolsonaro policies and Amazon fires growsCar4 SepThank you for this excellent report. I feel overwhelmed by the ecocidal intent of the Bolsonaro government in the name of ‘developing’ their ‘God-given’ resources.U.S. allocates first of $30M in grants for forest conservation in SumatraPlanet4dcarrot hella thick ;)Melting Arctic sea ice may be altering winds, weather at equator: studyleftylarry30 JanThe Arctic sea ice seems to be recovering this winter as per the last 10-12 years, good news.Malaysia has the world’s highest deforestation rate, reveals Google forest mapBone27 Sep, 2018Who you’re trying to fool with selective data revelation?You can’t hide the truth if you show historical deforestation for all countries, especially in Europe from 1800s to this day. WorldBank has a good wholesome data on this.Mass tree planting along India’s Cauvery River has scientists worriedSurendra Nekkanti23 JanHi Mongabay. Good effort trying to be objective in this article. I would like to give a constructive feedback which could help in clearing things up.1. It is mentioned that planting trees in village common lands will have negative affects socially and ecologically. There is no need to even have to agree or disagree with it, because, you also mentioned the fact that Cauvery Calling aims to plant trees only in the private lands of the farmers. So, plantation in the common lands doesn’t come into the picture.2.I don’t see that the ecologists are totally against this project, but just they they have some concerns, mainly in terms of what species of trees will be planted. And because there was no direct communication between the ecologists and Isha Foundation, it was not possible for them to address the concerns. As you seem to have spoken with an Isha spokesperson, if you could connect the concerned parties, it would be great, because I see that the ecologists are genuinely interested in making sure things are done the right way.May we all come together and make things happen.Rare Amazon bush dogs caught on camera in BoliviaCarrot1 Feba very good iniciative to be fallowed by the ranchers all overSponsoredcenter_img A joint report from the Brazilian National Institute for Space Research (INPE) and NGO Fundação SOS Mata Atlântica based on satellite imaging shows an annual reduction of 9.3 percent in deforested areas in the Mata Atlântica, the country’s most endangered biome.The cleared area in 17 Atlantic Forest states between October 2017 and April 2018 totaled 11,399 hectares (28,167 acres), which is 1,163 hectares (2,874 acres) less than over the same period a year earlier.However, intense pressure from agribusiness and the real estate market continues placing the Mata Atlântica’s ecosystems under threat, risks that include ongoing deforestation, losses in biodiversity, and potential extinction of species, experts warn. Deforested areas in Brazil’s most imperiled biome, the Mata Atlântica, were reduced by 9.3 percent from October 2017 to April 2018, compared year-to-year, according to a joint report from the Brazilian National Institute for Space Research (INPE) and Fundação SOS Mata Atlântica, an NGO.While this is good news, intense pressure from agribusiness and the real estate market continues to place Mata Atlântica ecosystems under increasing threat, with ongoing risks that include deforestation, biodiversity losses, and possible extinction of species, experts said.No large tropical forest ecosystem has suffered as much loss as the Mata Atlântica, also known as the Atlantic Forest. Encompassing a variety of tropical forest habitats — ranging from dry forests to moist forests to coastal mangroves — the Mata Atlântica once stretched up-and-down Brazil’s coastline, and covered parts of Paraguay, Uruguay and Argentina. Today, it survives largely in small degraded patches and protected areas.In the 2017-2018 period, an area of the biome totaling 11,399 hectares (28,167 acres) was cleared in 17 Brazilian states, which is 1,163 hectares (2,874 acres) less than the 12,562 hectares (31,041 acres) of deforestation recorded a year earlier, the report said.The data is based on the analysis of 87 percent of the approximately 131.03 million hectare (32.38 million acre) total area of the Mata Atlântica biome. The report explained that 10 percent was only partially evaluated due to cloud cover, while 3 percent could not be assessed due to unavailability of images.Forest losses weren’t evenly distributed throughout the biome, with just four Brazilian states accounting for more than 80 percent of cleared areas in the Mata Atlântica. The Southeastern state of Minas Gerais accounted for the biggest deforested area: 3,379 hectares (8,350 acres), followed by the Northeastern state of Piauí with 2,100 hectares (5,189 acres), the Southern state of Paraná with 2,049 hectares (5,063 acres), and the Northeastern state of Bahia with 1,985 hectares (4,905 acres).This Envisat satellite image shows a portion of three Brazilian states along the Atlantic coast: Rio de Janeiro, Espírito Santo and southern Bahia. To the south, clouds cover the country’s second largest city, Rio de Janeiro. Much of the area pictured was covered by the Atlantic Forest, or Mata Atlântica, a region containing a diverse and unique mix of vegetation and forest types. It is one of the most threatened biomes on Earth. Image courtesy of European Space Agency CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO.Atlantic Forest under pressureWhile logging and conversion of native vegetation for croplands and cattle pastures have been the primary drivers of Mata Atlântica deforestation for centuries, the real estate market and “authorized” deforestation are now also reducing the number of trees in urban areas, mostly in the Southeastern region, said Mario Mantovani, director of public policies at Fundação SOS Mata Atlântica, an NGO.“There is a lot of pressure on Mata Atlântica’s remaining areas in big cities and metropolitan regions.… In the past people had moved to the city to escape the woods; today a lot of people are moving to live closer to nature,” Mantovani said.Deforestation in the Mata Atlântica. Image by Themium CC BY 1.0In rural areas, charcoal production has also become a key deforestation driver, especially in the northern areas of Minas Gerais and Bahia, he noted.For André de Almeida Cunha, a professor at the Department of Ecology at the University of Brasília (UnB), one of the major environmental challenges is to balance Mata Atlântica preservation against agribusiness expansion, particularly in the states of Bahia and Piauí, where the accelerated advance of grain production is fast consuming habitat.“Minas Gerais, Bahia and Piauí are strategic states for the conservation of what remains of Mata Atlântica, along with Paraná and Santa Catarina [states]. On one hand they still hold a considerable part of the Mata Atlântica forest, but on the other they face the highest cover losses,” Cunha said.“Just as important as analyzing the loss of Mata Atlântica in the last [most recent] period is to look at the historical series, and think about prospects going forward,” he added.Fog settles over a portion of the Mata Atlântica in Paraná state. Image by Angeloleithold CC BY-SA 3.0.“More worrying” than the AmazonAlthough most national and international environmental outcry has focused on Amazon deforestation, it’s also important to shed light on, and show concern for, other biomes where forest loss is “even more worrying,” said Pedro Brancalion, a researcher at the Luiz de Queiroz College of Agriculture (Esalq) at the University of São Paulo (USP).“Mata Atlântica is still the most threatened biome. The [deforestation] process we see in the Amazon began 500 years ago in Mata Atlântica… There is still deforestation [underway] in Mata Atlântica [today] where biodiversity losses have not been offset by reforestation initiatives,” Brancalion explained.“If we lose 100 hectares of mature forest and gain 500 hectares of new forest, we cannot say that everything you lose in mature forests will regenerate in new forests… Sometimes biodiversity losses in this process are even unknown,” he noted, calling for more Atlantic Forest conservation programs instead of just relying on reforestation projects.Close up view of the Atlantic Forest, state of Paraná, Brazil. Image by Angeloleithold CC BY-SA 3.0.jpgIt’s important to note that the term “reforestation” has many definitions depending on who is using the word, and can include plantation forests, such as large-scale plantings in Brazil of Eucalyptus trees, utilized by the international paper industry. Eucalyptus monocultures have been characterized by environmental activists as “biodiversity deserts.” Such industrial plantations, which are common within the Atlantic Forest biome, are not counted in the annual deforestation/reforestation analyses done by INPE and Fundação SOS Mata Atlântica.Unlike the Brazilian Amazon, the Atlantic Forest biome until recently lacked a real time system of deforestation alerts. Then in June of this year the region was included in MapBiomas Alerta, a system that validates and refines native vegetation loss alerts in all Brazilian biomes with high-resolution images, and which is considered by experts to be a cutting-edge system for tracking spatial deforestation and for providing timely alerts. The initiative was launched by open-access platform MapBiomas — a network of NGOs, universities and technology companies in collaboration with Google.“[Before Mapbiomas alerta]… there were monitoring systems just to provide information after the problem happened in Mata Atlântica… Today the alerts system is a great tool that helps monitor deforestation when it happens,” Brancalion said. He added, however, that political will is needed to transform that data into action to curb ongoing deforestation.“Today’s Mata Atlantica could be tomorrow’s Amazon, depending on adopted public policies,” Brancalion said. But strong forest protection measures seem unlikely to be forthcoming from the agribusiness-friendly Bolsonaro administration.INPE and Fundação SOS Mata Atlântica have monitored Mata Atlântica deforestation since 1986. The biome is protected under federal law through a measure which has been endorsed by all 17 states in the region, Mantovani said.“Even though the government hasn’t invested much in science, INPE has become an island of excellence,” he said of the agency’s monitoring operation, considered by many experts to be the finest deforestation measuring and warning system in the tropics.INPE’s cutting-edge satellite-imaging technology used to track deforestation has recently been endorsed and defended by experts contacted by Mongabay. Those analysts dismissed Bolsonaro administration accusations of data manipulation. The government has offered no evidence to back up its recent charges of the inaccuracy of INPE data, which has shown that Amazon forest losses may be on the rise since Bolsonaro took power.Banner image caption: Golden lion tamarin (Leontopithecus rosalia). Image by Mab Shoot CC BY 2.0.FEEDBACK: Use this form to send a message to the author of this post. If you want to post a public comment, you can do that at the bottom of the page.last_img read more

Le Virton de Becca a du mal à passer chez les supporters

first_img«On ne les connaît pas» On parle beaucoup du recrutement virtonais en cette intersaison. Chez nous, des joueurs qui quittent notre BGL Ligue pour aller en Belgique. Mais de l’autre côté de la frontière, ce sont surtout les départs du club gaumais qui font jaser… Si on excepte deux banderoles postées une nuit sur les grilles du stade (nous en avions fait écho voici quelques jours), il n’y a pas encore eu de manifestations physiques de ce mécontentement. Mais chaque nouvelle médiatique concernant le groupe virtonais est abondamment commentée sur les réseaux sociaux. Bref, le «Virton version Flavio Becca» a un peu de mal à passer pour le moment… Partager L’Excelsior Virton a repris le chemin des entraînements avec à sa barre, comme prévu, Dino Toppmöller et pas mal de têtes bien connues de ce côté-ci de la frontière sur la pelouse. Fondé en 1922 et matricule 200 du football belge, l’Excelsior Virton est ce qu’on peut appeler un club de tradition. Un club où on a toujours été fier de son ancrage local et de ses racines. Des valeurs qui n’avaient pas empêché le club de déjà accéder à deux reprises à la D2 belge, en 2001, avec un certain Michel Leflochmoan à la barre, puis en 2013, sous Frank Defays. Et forcément, on regarde là-bas avec un œil attentif ces nouvelles recrues, dont une large majorité provient de BGL Ligue, ce championnat que l’on ne suit absolument pas de ce côté-là de la frontière. «On ne les connaît pas, ces joueurs. On suppose qu’ils sont bons. Mais on se demande surtout clairement pourquoi on a fait partir ceux qui nous ont fait remporter le titre la saison dernière…», a-t-on entendu à diverses reprises lundi dans la bouche de supporters virtonais, qui savent bien que sans Flavio Becca, leur club n’existerait plus. Julien Carette Et le fils de Klaus a donc recruté un groupe qui, à ses yeux, sera le plus apte à rivaliser. Faisant donc confiance comme on l’a répété ces dernières semaines à certains de ses anciens joueurs (Prempeh, Malget, Turpel, Couturier, Jordanov ou le duo Laurienté-Soumare qu’il a côtoyé lors de sa première saison au F91) et adversaires (Hadji, Benamra et Bojic). Tous des joueurs qui devront donc convaincre les sceptiques dans les prochaines semaines. center_img De quoi en faire le n°1 dans un coin de la Belgique considéré depuis très longtemps comme le parent pauvre du foot belge. Le foot «bling-bling», on ne connaît pas trop là-bas. Par contre, on y connaît la valeur du travail et on aime la reconnaissance liée à celui-ci, qu’il y ait en tout cas une certaine cohérence. De quoi avoir quand même une petite pression sur le dos. «Vous savez, quand je suis arrivé à Dudelange, mon prédécesseur (NDLR : Michel Leflochmoan) avait réussi le doublé. Et on est arrivé à faire encore mieux par la suite», répondait un Dino Toppmöller dont la tâche ne s’annonce quand même pas des plus simples. Mais ceux qui l’ont vu au F91 savent qu’il a les épaules pour réussir. Dino Toppmöller leur a (en partie) répondu en conférence de presse. «Quand je regarde mon groupe, j’ai confiance en ceux qui sont là. Et on pense tout simplement qu’ils sont plus forts que leurs prédécesseurs. Mais maintenant, c’est à eux de le prouver sur le terrain…», expliquait celui qui a réussi le doublé cette saison avec Dudelange. Le technicien allemand de 38 ans a vu plusieurs fois jouer Virton l’an dernier. Mais il a surtout pas mal observé le niveau de ses futurs adversaires en D1B. Et il a vu qu’il y avait un véritable gouffre entre la D1 amateurs, où Virton a triomphé, et son futur championnat, l’antichambre de l’élite belge. C’est en grande partie pour tout cela que les supporters grondent depuis quelques jours. Depuis que la rumeur évoque un possible départ à terme de Virton pour un nouveau stade, dont on dit qu’il pourrait prendre place à 40 km de là. Toppmöller a vu un gouffre C’est dans ce contexte un peu lourd que débarquent Dino Toppmöller, le nouvel entraîneur, son staff et le cadre choisi par le technicien allemand. Depuis qu’on a appris également que plusieurs cadres de l’équipe championne ne sont pas conservés. Le côté «on construit un groupe pour le détruire juste après» ne passe pas vraiment. Tout comme le fait que pas mal d’éléments estampillés «virtonais» (dont Thibaut Lesquoy, qui a signé à Dudelange) sont gentiment poussés vers la sortie… last_img read more

Ronaldo ‘eternally grateful’ to Madrid if he leaves

first_imgSports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next ‘High crimes and misdemeanors’: Trump impeachment trial begins Putin’s, Xi’s ruler-for-life moves pose challenges to West Trump assembles a made-for-TV impeachment defense team View comments LATEST STORIES Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil MOST READ Report: Disney dropping the ‘Fox’ from movie studio namescenter_img Palace OKs total deployment ban on Kuwait OFWs Jeron Teng returns to action for Alaska in time for PBA playoffs Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew In fight vs corruption, Duterte now points to Ayala, MVP companies as ‘big fish’ Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding Local media in Spain and Italy claim Ronaldo has already reached a deal to sign with Serie A team Juventus, although neither club has officially confirmed the negotiations.Mendes was quoted by Record on Thursday as saying that “if that happens, it will be just a new phase and a new challenge in his brilliant career.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkSPORTSTim Cone still willing to coach Gilas but admits decision won’t be ‘simple yes or no’Ronaldo hinted after the Champions League final in May that he could be leaving Madrid. He said he would discuss his club future while with Portugal at the World Cup, but never did.Portugal was eliminated by Uruguay in the round of 16. Portugal’s Cristiano Ronaldo gestures to the fans at the end of the group B match between Portugal and Spain at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Fisht Stadium in Sochi, Russia, Friday, June 15, 2018. (AP Photo/Francisco Seco)MADRID — Cristiano Ronaldo’s agent has told Portuguese media that the player would be “eternally grateful” to Real Madrid if he ends up leaving the European champion.Jorge Mendes was quoted as saying in Portuguese newspaper Record that Ronaldo would always be grateful to “the club, the president, the directors, the medical staff, all the workers without exception and all the Madrid fans around the world.”ADVERTISEMENTlast_img read more

Mother claims unprofessionalism of CPA workers

first_imgA mother is appealing for intervention by government after she reported that welfare workers from the Childcare and Protection Agency (CPA) made false allegations against her daughter with the motive of having her taken away from her custody.According to the woman, Debbi Tappin, welfare workers visited her mother’s home demanding that she hand over her granddaughter.Tappin related to Guyana Times that on 11 May her mother was at her home in Sophia when three officials insisted that the young girl be handed over to their care as she was reportedly being “sexually abused” and was “pregnant”.However, after the grandmother refused, making it clear that the child’s mother was not at home at the time, the officials had left indicating that Tappin should visit the agency to settle the issue.Tappin reported that when she visited the agency the same day she was escorted by the welfare officers to the Turkeyen Police Station where she was told by a senior officer that she was under arrest.This publication understands that while the woman was at the station demanding information about her arrest and the reason behind her daughter being taken away, the welfare workers once again visited her mother’s home.While at the station, Tappin alleged that the officer assaulted her as she was trying to make her way out of the building.“While I was going through the gate, this man who identified himself as Mr Benn chucked me back against the gate post and the women officers were right there, he could have let them handle the situation” she related.She further stated that when the welfare officials returned to the station with her daughter, the child was taken into a private room where she was questioned by the officials.“They didn’t want me to go in, they said that I wasn’t allowed in. When my daughter came out and I asked her what happened, she told me that they told her she had been raped and was now pregnant,” Tappin explained.Shocked at the unprofessionalism of the officials, Tappin related that she asked the officers to take her and the child to the Georgetown Public Hospital to have a test carried out in order to ascertain the claims.However, according to the mother, after tests were done on the child it showed she was not pregnant and had not been sexually abused.The enraged mother told this publication that she became annoyed since her family was embarrassed as news had circulated that her grade five daughter was pregnant.According to her, she took her daughter to the CPA the following day where she met with Director Ann Greene whom she believed would have been able to offer help.However this was not the case as Greene allegedly informed her that nothing would come out of the case and that she should “drop it.”Subsequent visits to the Minister of Social Protection were futile as each time she ended up meeting with Greene.The woman is calling on the ministry to investigate the matter since her daughter is facing the brunt of the offensive action.She explained that students from her daughter’s school are aware of the matter also and have been teasing the child about being pregnant.“I need something to be done because my daughter is suffering. She went to school and every student is teasing her, now she doesn’t even want to go anymore. She had exams but I can’t force her to go,” Tappin exploded.Attempts to get on to Childcare and Protection Agency Director Ann Greene and Social Protection Minister Volda Lawrence for responses to the allegations made were unsuccessful.last_img read more

WB Official Outlines Solutions For Transformation in Liberia

first_imgThe World Bank New Country Director for Ghana, Liberia and Sierra Leone, Dr. Henry G. R. Kerali has outlined several solutions that Liberia can use to achieve sustainable development growth.Mr. Kerali said Liberia and other countries in the region should support smallholder farmers to increase their productivity and income.“I put special emphasis on smallholder farmers, because the solution is not to sell their lands to large scale farmers. You only end up increasing the number of urban poor by doing so. The other solution is to go out there and be entrepreneurs,” said Mr. Kerali.Mr. Kerali made these recommendations Tuesday, November 17 at the Monrovia City Hall when he served as the guest speaker at program marking the third annual MSME Conference with over 50 participants in attendance.He said over 80% of all businesses in Liberia is MSME and that 70% of household incomes are from MSME activities.He said the task ahead is to improve opportunities for the sector to achieve sustainable development in line with the crosscutting pillars of Liberia’s Agenda for Transformation (AfT).“Sustainable MSME development can only be achieved when Liberia has healthy skilled laborers, sound macroeconomic policies, vibrant education system, and good governance, access to finance, sustainable infrastructure, and efficient legal and regulatory framework,” he said.He noted that given the challenges that Liberia faces today, “one message that I would like you to take away is to be innovative and entrepreneurial. If you do not have a job, create one for yourself and employ others. This is the best way to contribute to the development of Liberia.” There are ten million new entrants to the labor market each year in Sub-Saharan Africa, he said, “My heart bleeds when I see thousands of Africans risking their lives crossing the hot deserts, and riding the high seas with the false dream of a better life in other continents.” He pointed to three basic reasons Africans take extreme measures to seek greener pastures.“Firstly, there are insufficient opportunities to earn a decent living in their home countries. Secondly, most of those leaving the continent do not have the right skills for the few jobs that are available in Africa; and thirdly, they are afraid to return empty handed when they realize that it is not a panacea out there,” Mr. Kerali said.He noted that employment does not always mean earning a regular wage! “In Sub-Saharan Africa, from the share of total employment – about 35% are SME subsistence farmers, another 55% are self-employed and only 20% earn formal wages.”Part of the solution for Liberia and other countries in Africa, is to support “our smallholder farmers to increase their productivity and therefore increase their incomes.”In recognition of the capital constraints of SMEs, IFC – the private sector arm of the WBG set up the West Africa Venture Fund (“WAVF”), to provide scarce risk capital and advisory services to SMEs, he said.“This initiative targets Liberian owned businesses thirteen (13) of which have benefited from this initiative. And there are plans to expand the size of the fund from US$20m to US$40m to cover Liberia and Sierra Leone.”The World Bank Group through its Trade and Competitiveness Global Practice, he said, is co-sponsoring the E-PLUS Program, a youth entrepreneurial program to be launched by the Ministry of Commerce Trade and Industry. “The World Bank Group is providing US$100,000 seed capital for 10 businesses. This will be accompanied by a capacity building exercise, which will lead to a selection of qualified businesses,” he said.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Bai Best Named Daily Observer’s New Managing Director

first_imgKenneth Y. Best, Sr. congratulates his son Bai, the Observer’s new Managing Director (Photo: Charles Snetter)By David S. Menjor and Gloria TambaOver the weekend the staff of Liberia’s oldest surviving newspaper, the Daily Observer, witnessed the transfer of authority to Bai Sama G. Best by his father, Mr. Kenneth Y. Best, Sr., publisher.Ken Best, who turns 80 in October, last Saturday said he has the explicit trust and confidence in the ability of his son Bai to lead the Liberian Observer Corporation (LOC) henceforth, despite the many challenges he went through to get thus far.“The Daily Observer has come this far by the grace of God.  Despite the many challenges we went through including the assaults, burning down of our offices, imprisonment among others, today I am grateful to God and hereby announce to you that my son, Bai Best is the new Managing Director of the Liberian Observer Corporation. He is given all rights and charged with the responsibility to manage the affairs of the corporation and continue from here on,” he said.Bai is a graduate of Westmont College (2001), Santa Barbara, California, where he majored in Communication Studies. Between 2002 and 2005 he served as co-director of youth ministry at Christ Church of Washington (DC), until he was called to join his father in Liberia as marketing manager of the Daily Observer. In 2010, Bai was one of two Liberians to participate in the first-ever Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), a forum organized by former U.S. President Barack Obama. Later the YALI forum was renamed “Mandela Washington Fellowship” (MWF), in honor of the late South African president Nelson Mandela.Bai brings to the table great industry insight gathered over the years, along with a passion for applying creativity and technology to journalism. Under his leadership the Daily Observer successfully executed the first phase of an Elections Promise Tracker in partnership with Internews and with funding from USAID, with an aim to monitor the progress of Liberia’s elected legislators, based on their 2017 elections campaign promises. The goal of the Promise Tracker is to spur more participatory democracy by empowering the Liberian electorate with relevant information about the performance of their elected leaders.On Saturday, with tears of joy in his eyes, Mr. Best told his son to “Keep focused.”“I am grateful to God that I am turning the torch over to Bai,” he noted in conclusion of his remarks.Receiving the blessing from his father, Bai Best said he was grateful to his father for the concrete foundation he has laid. “Don’t underestimate the power of humble beginnings. I am grateful have your blessing, to serve this noble institution,” Bai said.The young MD who said he is not one for fanfare, has a mission synonymous to his father’s mission but with new ingredients to elevate the Paper to higher levels.“Ladies and gentlemen, to accomplish our mission, we need to take research very seriously. The reason is that there is no journalism without research,” he said. In addition to research of current events, Best was also pointing to an up-coming project, aimed at digitizing the Daily Observer’s archives.“One good news is that Internews, has also agreed to help us digitize our newspaper archives in order to ensure accessibility to more people around the world and the survival of them in the event of a disaster, like fire or flood,” he said.The Observer’s archives include not just the Daily Observer’s own editions, but every newspaper published in Liberia since 2005, as well as vintage Daily Observer editions from the 1980s, purchased from strangers.He also called on all the employees, including those outside of the editorial department, to consider themselves as journalists, as there they may find themselves in the middle of an unfolding story and be the only ones situated to tell it to the world.“Knowing that technology has empowered everyone with a smartphone to gather news, we are willing to groom all of you. We will invest in training you and providing you the opportunities to contribute,” he said.He added that there are plans underway to redesign the paper to make it more attractive and business oriented.He named Leroy M. Sonpon, III who reports at the Lower House of the Legislature and Abednego Davis, who reports from the Judiciary, as the Observer’s best performing journalists of 2017 called on the rest of the reporters to emulate their good examples.Also, Mr. John Stewart, former Associate Editor at the New Democrat and a former commissioner on the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), was named Editorial Supervisor in an effort to add quality to the production of stories.Guests at the program included Rev. Emmanuel Giddings, Executive Director, ALFALIT/Liberia-Ghana Mission; Maureen Sieh, a niece of Ken Best and a journalist and media development specialist at Internews; and Charles Snetter, CEO, Radio Monrovia; Sando Moore, Publisher, Images Magazine; and Muriel Best, one of the Observer’s first shareholders and elder sister of Kenneth Y. Best.In remarks, Rev. Giddings said Bai will succeed because he has been prepared for the task over the years. “Bai,” as Jesus said, “You will do likewise and even more. I am impressed with your father’s preferment of you to serve in this position. Please keep ALFALIT at heart as your father has done over the years,” Rev. Giddings said. The Observer has had a decade long partnership with ALFALIT, promoting adult literacy across Liberia.Mr. Snetter, Madam Sieh and Mr. Moore each narrated their experiences with the Daily Observer over the years and lauded Mr. Kenneth Y. Best for his mentorship and contribution to Liberia at large.The event was held in the Stanton B. Peabody Memorial Library a the LOC headquarters, ELWA Junction, Paynesville.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Muslims reflect on Prophet Muhammad during Eid-ul-Fitr celebrations

first_imgA few Muslim brothers partaking in a prayer ceremony during Eid-ul-Fitr on WednesdayBy Davina RamdassMuslims across Guyana on Tuesday ended the fasting period of Ramadan with the celebration of Eid-ul-Fitr, which saw sweetmeats and gifts being distributed on Wednesday in observance of that celebration.While most Guyanese look forward to Eid-ul-Fitr, also called the “Festival of Breaking the Fast”, because of sweetmeats, the day is for Muslims very symbolic, as it reminds them of the doings of the Prophet Muhammad when he was on earth.Guyana Times caught up with Imam of the Peter’s Hall Masjid on the East Bank of Demerara, who explained the significance of the celebration of Eid-ul-Fitr.“Today (Tuesday) we celebrate the ending of the holy month of Ramadan, (in) which we had 29 days of fasting, and so it is now the end of the fast. It’s the first day of the new month, and we have our celebration after one month of fasting,” he explained.Fasting, for Muslims, is important, as it reminds them of the human beings Allah wants them to be. In fact, during this period, Muslims stay away from eating, drinking and ‘worldly pleasures’ among other things from dawn to sunset. This, the Imam said, is intended to train persons in Islam to be Godly, as no lies, fighting, arguing or malice-bearing is permitted.Ramadan usually lasts for about 29 or 30 days. This year it wrapped up within 29 days, after the moon was sighted on Tuesday evening.During Ramadan, Muslims would visit the Mosque for daily prayers. It is their hope to continue these traits even after Ramadan has been concluded.The sighting of the moon plays a vital part in this holiday. “In the Islamic calendar, the moon shows every month, and from one moon to the next moon is…one month. So…the starting of every moon marks the starting of the month; so for us to know when the month (starts), we have to see the new moon…(when it) disappears, then the month (has finished)”, the Imam explained.He further stated that the celebration of Eid-ul-Fitr begins with prayers. The morning after Ramadan concludes, believers would gather at the Mosque, where they are reminded of what is expected of them as they seek to obey their creator.Imam Intiaz Sahid said the worshippers at his mosque would usually participate in a feast following the sermon, wherein food and drinks are shared among believers. It is a time of laughter and celebration as they reflect on their time of devotion towards Allah and meditate on the way forward.Following this, he explained, some Muslims would also share meals with family members while some would share sweetmeats to their neighbours, co-workers, friends, and even the less fortunate.“This is the time when we distribute to the poor. This is the time when we have a ruling that for everybody who fasted they give one gallon of grain, or equivalent of one gallon of grain for every member of the home. So if you have five people in the home, you have to give five gallons of grain or equivalent in cash towards a poor or needy (person), so that they may be able to have an Eid, and this is supposed to be paid before you pray (to break the fast),” the Imam informed.This is all done to mirror the life of the Prophet Muhammad. The Muslim leader explained, “Basically, Allah is our creator. He orders our command…our holy Prophet, who was a human being, was our teacher, and in his lifetime he did the same thing, and what we are doing is following what he did and what he taught us”.Imam of the Peters Hall Mosque, Intiaz Sahidlast_img read more

Students protest domestic violence

first_imgPhoto: Janelle L’Hurux, left, holds a sign that reads, Abuse Is Not Love, with participants Neacail Boyd, middle, and Ryan Armstrong – Christine Rumleskie/Energeticcity.caThe North Peace Secondary School organized a massive protest today to help stop domestic abuse.- Advertisement – Grade 10 student Janelle L’Hurux says she participated because she wants to raise awareness on how serious abuse is. “I got invovolved in it, because this is one of the things I really like to protest for.  I have been in similar situations , and I just find it to be a really strong thing for me because I really want to stop it.” L’Hurux says. She says the entire school participated in the event. Students marched from the North Peace Secondary School to the Totem Mall, waving signs with anti-domestic violence slogans. L’Hurux says the only way to put an end to the abuse is to be vocal and to stand up to it.Advertisementlast_img read more

Saudi arrests the latest excuse for oil price hike

first_imgNEW YORK — Oil prices pushed above $66 a barrel Friday after Saudi Arabia announced the arrests of 172 Islamic militants, some of whom planned to attack oil fields. Light, sweet crude for June delivery rose sharply after vacillating between gains and losses this morning. It settled up $1.40 at $66.46 a barrel on the New York Mercantile Exchange. Brent crude settled 76 cents higher at $68.41 a barrel on the ICE Futures exchange in London. Gasoline futures settled up 7.1 cents on the Nymex at $2.3613 after falling earlier. 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

Press Pass – Sunday, February 8

first_imgRay Stubbs is joined in the studio by Patrick Barclay and Matt Scott to discuss all of the latest sporting action.They discuss Tottenham’s north London derby triumph over Arsenal, Manchester United’s 1-1 draw with West Ham and glance at AP McCoy’s announcement that he is set to retire.last_img