Senate President Pro-Tempore, Armah Jallah, has described as misrepresentation of the truth, accusations reportedly coming from Senators Daniel Naatehn of Gbarpolu County and Thomas Grupee of Nimba County.The two senators have accused Pro Temp Jallah of refusing to place on the Senate agenda several legislative instruments including findings of confirmation hearings, and two letters for the establishment of magistrate courts in Belle Baloma in Belle District and another in Gungbeta in Bokomu, and the elevation of a public school, all in Gbarpolu County.The accusations contained in the March 10 edition of the Focus Newspaper quoted Senator Naatehn, who co-chairs the committee on Executive as further stating that his kinsman and Catholic brother Jallah needs to prioritize the interest of Gbarpolu citizens who brought him to prominence. Senator Grupee declared that some Senators are noted for expressing serious opposition to presidential nominees who are not in their political interest. But Pro Temp Jallah in his response denied ever granting an interview to the newspaper, adding “I will never make such derogatory and inflammatory statement about people I love and care for.” He said there have been no consensus confirmation reports that he has not approved for the Senate Plenary action.Jallah pointed out that citizens of Gbarpolu very well know “who I am and what my contributions have been over the years to the county. I am in good relationship with my kinsmen.” This he said was interpreted by their votes he received when he overwhelmingly emerged victorious in the 2011 Senatorial election.On the issue of Magisterial Courts, the Pro-temp, who chairs the Gbarpolu County Legislative Caucus, pointed out that he has already submitted for enactment into law, three Bills to establish the Henry Town Magisterial Court to cover areas commencing at Henry Town bordering Bopolu City, Gbeleta and Borlorta.Other areas include the Bills to establish the Moilarquelleh Magisterial Court to cover areas commencing at Bellekpamu and Gungbaeta and comprising Moilarquelleh bordering Salayah, Balley and Dorkorta; and Belle Fassama Magisterial Court to cover all towns in Belle Fassama and those surrounding villages as well as concurrent jurisdiction with Bopolu Magisterial Court.On the question of the Multilateral School in Gbarma, Senator Jallah clarified that the government already has a technical and vocational education and training (TVET) program in Gbarpolu, for which he and the former Senator, Theodore Momo, secured some funding.He said the TVET program as it is, needs the Legislature to allocate additional funds to support it, adding, “Senator Naatehn is aware of my efforts concerning all the magisterial courts and the TVET program and all he needs to do is to support my effort for the good of the county.”In another development, Pro-Temp Jallah has asked the Ministry of Internal Affairs (MIA) to conduct the relevant research that will catalogue all presidential nominees under the MIA and halt payroll entitlement to those pending Senate confirmation. Senator Jallah observed that presidential nominees under the MIA, who have not been confirmed by the Senate, are executing the duties and responsibilities of the respective positions they have been nominated to and are on government payroll and receiving monthly salaries; a practice that is against government regulations for presidential nominees that are subject to Senate confirmation.Pro-tem Jallah has also requested the MIA to probe the issue of some local chiefs, who were redundant and their salaries placed in escrow and submit a comprehensive report on that account.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
The agenda for today’s meeting indicates City Council is expected to debate the decision by the Treasury Board, to a proposed rollback of 2009 and 2010 RCMP pay hikes. A letter from the Mayor of Nanaimo is asking for Fort St. John council input on the December decision which the board says is a reflection of the downturn in the economy. It would rollback a proposed 2009 raise, from 3.5 to 1.5 percent and, a 2 percent hike next year to just point five percent. A website has been set up to rally support for officers opposed to the cutbacks…and it argues they will have a negative effect on all communities served by the force because the RCMP must compete with other police forces for new recruits…. – Advertisement -Mayor Lantz addressed the problem briefly this morning on Issues and Answers… [asset|aid=1063|format=mp3player|formatter=asset_bonus|title=8b465cfac990c0c9e13959456f398a35-Mayor-Mounties_1_Pub.mp3] He added the city is waiting for the arrival of the local detachment’s new inspector to get his plan to meet the needs of the community. Meantime, in another letter to Fort St. John Council, local detachment Staff Sergeant Ward Johnson notes the rollback opposition among rank and file officers is not unanimous.Advertisement
LANCASTER – Three young women from Lancaster won the California-Hawaii Elks Association’s Scouting Gold Essay Contest. Danielle Pederson, Sharon Bowers and Virginia Pederson finished first, second and third, respectively, in the contest. All three are lifetime members of Girl Scouts USA and holders of Gold Awards, the highest Girl Scout award. All have been Girl Scouts since kindergarten. The three received savings bonds, plaques and certificates for winning the state essay contest. Previously, they earned savings bonds by winning the Lancaster Elks Lodge and Elks Inland District essay contests. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREGift Box shows no rust in San Antonio Stakes win at Santa Anita The Pedersons both attend Antelope Valley College. Bowers attends the University of Hawaii at Monoa. They were members of Girl Scout Troop 116, which is sponsored by the Lancaster Elks Lodge and which helps the lodge with flag ceremonies, its annual Halloween party and its annual Youth Olympics track meet.
Southgate makes young England fan’s day by replying to his letter Neymar has got his eyes on personal and team glory and has the talent to do it, especially against Switzerland, Costa Rica and Serbia.talkSPORT will be with listeners all day and all night at this year’s 2018 FIFA World Cup™ with over 800 hours of World Cup content and all 64 games live across the talkSPORT network. Billy Hawkins (Senior Writer) – Romelu Lukaku Traditionally, you only need six goals to win the Golden Boot. Although I expect England to go out in the quarter-finals, Kane could easily reach four or more against Tunisia and Panama. He’s a master at punishing lesser teams in Premier League and if that trend continues into the World Cup, he will go big. Anton Stanley (Features Editor) – Neymar Although Brazil will win the tournament overall, I can see France racking up goals with Antoine Griezmann being the catalyst. In a group containing Australia, Peru and Denmark, Les Bleus will be hoping to flex their muscles and send a message to the rest of the world. 7 Pure class Dele Alli reveals pre-match rituals and lucky charms he has before matches 7 7 ‘It could have been me’ – Allardyce admits World Cup was tough to watch A reminder to Liverpool fans about the very comical threat Neymar offers SUPERSTITION 7 Michael Benson (Staff Writer) – Lionel Messi Expecting him to grab a bucketload of goals against Tunisia and Panama in the group stages, giving him breathing room after Belgium are inevitably knocked out in the quarter-finals. Shy guy diamond geezer Olivier Giroud confirms N’Golo Kante is the nicest man in football Fallon d’Floor Here at talkSPORT.com we’re no different and happy to put our necks on the line to provide our tournament predictions.So who do our writers believe will win the World Cup Golden Boot, which is awarded to the top goalscorer at the tournament, scroll down to find out. Arsenal star Laurent Koscielny admits he didn’t want France to win World Cup Jackson Cole (Staff Writer) – Antoine Griezmann You’re the one Joe Coleman (Staff Writer) – Antoine Griezmann Damian Mannion (Deputy Editor) – Neymar Paul Pogba buys France World Cup winners specially designed rings NO JOY 7 I believe Argentina are going to win the entire tournament and I believe that will be largely down to this man. Messi knows this is his last chance to play a World Cup at his peak and won’t want to let the opportunity slip away. 7 Over in Russia, World Cup 2018 is about to get under way and supporters are busy making predictions around the globe.Whether they are filling in brackets, putting on bets, entering sweepstakes, or just looking to prove their football knowledge to mates, it’s getting people excited. misery Why does Luis Suarez kiss his wrist when he celebrates a goal? Luis Suarez and Edinson Cavani are good ‘each-way’ shouts given their group opponents, while Kylian Mbappe is tempting too, along with Harry Kane. In the end, it’s Neymar who gets the nod, for me. Watch every goal England scored at the 2018 World Cup Learn the words for England’s catchy Gareth Southgate song Sean O’Brien (Staff Writer) – Harry Kane LU BEAUTY 7 Antoine Griezmann is one of the world’s most deadly forwards out in Russia. He was the top scorer at Euro 2016 so knows how to do it on the big stage internationally. Good times
I give it until, let’s see, approximately, all things being equal, this week, when South Carolina opens with a game against Central Florida. (Although you may find the most interesting coaching changes in college football are the changes on Carroll’s staff, where there’s pressure on the replacements for offensive coordinator Norm Chow, now with the Tennessee Titans, and defensive assistant Ed Orgeron, now head coach at Ole Miss.) The No. 4 reason to watch college football this season is the UCLA linebackers corps, the best in the Pac-10, according to The Sporting News, led by seniors Spencer Havner and Justin London. (USC will have to scrape by with the conference’s best backfield, wide receivers, offensive line, defensive line, defensive backs and special teams, according to The Sporting News.) The No. 5 reason to watch college football this season is the fight over American Indian nicknames, a battle that seems likely to go on and on. Heavy-handedly, the NCAA is trying to do the right thing, convince universities that claim to “honor” American Indians that nicknames and mascots connoting the same primitive ferocity as Wolf Packs, Wildcats, Cougars, Gators and Hurricanes is a strange way to honor human beings. (“Trojans” is OK for now.) The No. 6 reason to watch college football this year is UTEP, where Mike Price, quarterback Jordan Palmer and one of the country’s best groups of receivers plan to continue last year’s improvement. Good to see Price on the verge of a return to the big time after the former Washington State coach stumbled a few years ago over college sports’ new belief that coaches must be paragons of virtue on the level of priests (in fact, higher). (Jordan Palmer’s older brother Carson also bears a little watching with the Cincinnati Bengals after his late-2004 wakeup.) The No. 7 reason to watch college football this year is that it isn’t pro football. The amateurs have their problems, but they don’t have anybody quite like Terrell Owens. (Among other things that might make the colleges more attractive than the pros for Pete Carroll.) The No. 8 reason to watch college football this season is the new Harris Poll, which replaces the Associated Press poll in the Bowl Championship Series soup with a strange panel of former players, coaches and media members. Here’s a Harris Poll panel that would be just as effective: Emmylou Harris, Julie Richard Harris, Neil Patrick Harris, Katherine Harris, Harris Barton, a Harris Ranch steak, a Harris tweed sportcoat, Prince Harry, Deborah Harry, Harrah’s Casino and Sean Connery, the hairiest James Bond. (Anybody who doesn’t start the season with USC No. 1 is off the list immediately.) The No. 9 reason to watch college football this season is the early game of the year, Texas at Ohio State on Sept. 10, the preseason poll’s No. 2 team vs. its No. 9 team, Longhorns Heisman Trophy candidate Vince Young vs. Buckeyes Heisman hopeful Ted Ginn. (Consider it a warmup for USC at Oregon on Sept. 24 in a dangerous game for the Trojans.) And the No. 10 reason to watch college football this season is that the BCS national-championship game comes back to the Rose Bowl on Jan. 4, 2006. What better setting for the biggest game of the year? (Especially if USC is playing.) — Kevin Modesti’s column appears in the Daily News three days a week. He can be reached at email@example.com. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! From Texas’ Vince Young, to Ohio State’s Troy Smith, to Virginia Tech’s Marcus Vick, to Texas A&M’s Reggie McNeal, to Oregon’s Kellen Clemens, the run-and-gun quarterbacks are going to have hands and feet in deciding the national title. (Not that USC’s Matt Leinart’s one dimension won’t have the most to say about the national title.) The No. 2 reason to watch college football this season is the Southeastern Conference, home of six of the top 25 teams in the first rankings of the year after having five in the final polls of last year. Tennessee’s Phil Fulmer is going to have to hold off new coaches at Florida (Urban Meyer), LSU (Les Miles) and South Carolina (Steve Spurrier). (Meanwhile, USC’s Pete Carroll is still out front and holding off every coach in every conference in the land.) The No. 3 reason to watch college football this season is Spurrier himself, back in college football and salty as ever. On TV recently, Spurrier vowed that since people seem to take it the wrong way when he makes fun of opponents, he’s going to restrict his comments to “coachspeak” from now on. The No. 1 reason to watch college football this season is all of the double-threat quarterbacks out there, seemingly more young men than ever with magic in their arms and legs, able to defy defenses and binocular-holders and the sport’s over-specialization. (Did I say the No. 1 reason to watch college football? I forgot my Los Angeles perspective for a moment there. I mean the No. 1 reason other than USC’s bid for an unprecedented three national championships in a row, or 2 1/2 in a row, to be precise.)
AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 Babcock decided against a one-year contract extension and eventually signed on to coach the Red Wings. That cleared the way for Burke to bring in first-year coach Randy Carlyle. Rucchin was a victim of the league’s new $39 million cap and was traded for a low-level goon and a conditional pick to the Rangers. But the Ducks didn’t let their top forward and defenseman from the 2003-04 squad that finished out of playoff contention go anywhere. Burke decided against buying out center Sergei Fedorov’s contract and re-signed the team’s lone unrestricted free-agent, defenseman Sandis Ozolinsh. The team even added a link to the past in forward Teemu Selanne, who played in front of full crowds at the Pond from 1995-2001. Add in the signing of All-Star defenseman Scott Niedermayer and the Ducks’ summer makeover was complete. “We set out to make this team a more physical and entertaining team,” Burke said. “I think we delivered. … This is a playoff team.” Disney. G.M. Bryan Murray. Coach Mike Babcock. Captain Steve Rucchin. Since the NHL skated away 17 months ago, many of the biggest names from the Mighty Ducks Stanley Cup run in 2003 are gone. Disney sold the team in June to Orange County communication moguls Henry and Susan Samueli. Murray left to coach Ottawa and was replaced permanently by the no-nonsense Brian Burke, a former G.M. in Vancouver. OFFENSE The phrase “up-tempo hockey” has been used so much by the Ducks’ coaching staff and management that it’s become the team’s unofficial theme for this season. “I think the players prefer it,” Burke said. “I think the players prefer initiating rather than reacting.” Just about every move – less a couple to create some room under the new salary cap – has been with the offense in mind. Selanne, who signed to a one-year, $1 million contract, appears to have recovered from knee surgery and should contribute. Fedorov, Petr Sykora and Rob Niedermayer also return from a Ducks team that scored the third-fewest goals (2.24 goals per game) in 2003-04. DEFENSE The addition of Scott Niedermayer, the defending Norris Trophy winner as the league’s top defenseman, bolstered an already competent defense. Niedermayer was named captain Monday and is expected to be paired with Ozolinsh on a regular basis to create a potent offensive punch from the blue line. Ruslan Salei and Keith Carney return to again create a more traditional defensive pairing. The new aggressive style will translate to defense and forwards will be expected to get back and help out. GOALTENDING Jean-Sebastien Giguere has yet to recapture the magic of his 2002-03 playoff run, which ended with him holding the Conn Smythe Trophy as playoff MVP after the Game 7 loss to New Jersey. He’ll now have to adjust to the smaller pads and shootout among other new rules. He’s coming off a season where he posted the highest goals-against average (2.62) since arriving after the 1999-2000 season. Ilya Bryzgalov, who has started in just one NHL game and played a total of two, will back up Giguere. Bryzgalov was 1-2 in the preseason with a 3.33 GAA and an .886 save percentage. SPECIAL TEAMS If the preseason was any indication, expect to see them out there a lot. Players will need some time – possibly all the way through the All-Star break – to adjust to the new rules. In the meantime, expect frequent trips to the penalty box. The Ducks certainly have no lack of skill players to take advantage of man-advantage situations. The penalty kill is another story. The Ducks struggled in that area during the preseason, allowing at least one power play goal in all but one game. They gave up 16 in 73 opportunities (22 percent) overall. COACHING Carlyle might have been a 17-year NHL defenseman, but the 1981 Norris Trophy winner was brought in for his entire approach to the game. “The Ducks will play a high-tempo, aggressive-forecheck, puck-moving style,” Carlyle said when he was introduced as the Ducks’ coach in August. “That’s what we’re about.” Carlyle accumulated a 222-159-52-7 record in five seasons as coach of the AHL’s Manitoba Moose, a tenure that was interrupted by two years as an assistant at the Washington Capitals (2002-2004). Dave Farrish and Newell Brown were brought in as assistants on a coaching staff that has completely turned over with the exception of goaltending consultant Francois Allaire. MAKE OR BREAK An influx of new players, coaches and management will have to come together quickly. The biggest change for the veteran Ducks players might be the team’s new proactive style, which has replaced the neutral-zone trap used by Babcock. Expect the pressure to fall on Giguere. He’ll have to pay the price when the team’s attack turns the puck over, which will be even more costly minus the two-line pass. The Ducks also expect contributions from Selanne, who is coming off the worst NHL season of his 12-year career. In the preseason, he looks like a different player from the one who was hobbled by a knee injury in 2003-04 with Colorado. SCHEDULE There are no lack of tough trips for the Ducks, who open with two games on the road. Four of their final five games before the Olympic break are on the road as are five of the last six games to end the regular season. “Those are all sources of concern for us,” Burke said. “Frankly, it’s the worst schedule the Ducks have ever had.” The league’s new schedule that emphasizes division rivalries also creates some short trips back East. “We go to the East Coast to play two games,” Burke said. “We don’t ever want to do that. We’d like to play four, five or preferably six if we go that far. To be fair to the league, everybody has a tough schedule.” BREAKOUT PLAYER Center Joffrey Lupul, 22 was in a crop of prospects whose growth was stunted by the lockout. He accumulated 34 points (13 goals, 21 assists) in a solid rookie campaign in 2003-04, but was unable to follow it up as he spent last season with the Ducks’ AHL affiliate. “It was not the second year you’re hoping for,” Lupul said. “After kind of making a dent my rookie season, I was back (in the minors).” He has been playing with some accomplished forwards this preseason, including Rob Niedermayer and Selanne. In six preseason games, he had four goals and six assists. “I want to be the guy who makes an impact,” Lupul said. “I didn’t really do that my first year. . . . I want to be consistent this year.” BEHIND THE MASK Jean-Sebastien Giguere is hoping to get some swagger back, after leading the Ducks to a Stanley Cup Finals berth in 2003. Q: Were there any high points of the lockout? A: “I got to play in Germany and that was a great experience. I also got to spend Christmas with my family, which I haven’t done in years.” Q: What’s the most annoying rule change from a goalie’s perspective? A: “I’m not one to complain. There are already too many people complaining. I’m going to try to stay positive. We all have to live with it.” Q: What are the highlights of playing hockey in Anaheim? A: “How can you not love Southern California? It’s a great place to live. We have a great building and a great organization. Everything’s good about this place.” Q: Do you look forward to being the center of attention when it comes to the shootouts that will now break ties after OT? A: “Shootouts are always tough. I’ve been trying to get as much practice in before the season starts. Fortunately, we aren’t going to have to do it a whole lot. Maybe we’ll get to do it 10 times for the season. Q: Goaltenders aren’t always thought to be the sanest individuals. How did you find yourself in that group? A: “I was the youngest of five kids so they stuck me in the net whenever they wanted to play hockey. I just kind of became a goaltender. A lot of goalies are different. I feel I’m pretty level-headed.” GOING THREE ROUNDS According to left wing/enforcer Todd Fedoruk, there are three traits an NHL enforcer must possess : The ability to play – “With the way the game is nowadays, you have to be able to play. You can’t be a liability when the coach puts you out there.” It’s has to be in your blood – “You have to be a fighter from the time you’re a kid. The guys I know who have been fighters in the league have an aggressive tendency to them. That’s not something you can teach.” Know the code – “There’s a certain level of respect factor the guys around the league have for everybody that fights.” Fedoruk’s on the game’s Top 3 fighters: “I don’t like to rank guys. When you get to this level, you’re a professional. Anybody can win on any night. … I don’t respect any one player more than another.” Best guys he has ever fought. Nov, 4 2000 vs. Buffalo’s Rob Ray – “That guy had already been in 200 fights in the NHL. It was one of my first games up with the Flyers and I asked him to fight and he gave me the opportunity. I had a lot of respect for guys like that.” Mar. 19, 2001 vs. Edmonton’s Georges Laraque – “I was a rookie and I put myself out there. He’s a guy that can really hurt a player. I held my own against him and changed the momentum. We were down 3-1 and we came back and won that game.” All the others – “I’d like to give you one more that sticks out, but every fight is important to me.” A.J. Perez, (562) 499-1338 firstname.lastname@example.org 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Sinn Féin President Mary Lou McDonald TD has today announced that Donegal TD Pearse Doherty has been appointed the party’s deputy leader in the Dáil.Doherty TD will continue to serve as the party’s Public Expenditure and Reform Spokesperson.Deputy McDonald’s slight shuffle has also seen Cork TD Jonathon O’Brien appointed to the Public Accounts Committee. Teachta McDonald said: “Whilst not undertaking a full reshuffle of spokespersons at this time, I am today appointing Pearse Doherty TD as my deputy leader in the Dáil and Jonathan O’Brien TD as a member of the Public Accounts Committee.“Pearse will play an important role in advancing the party’s work in Leinster House, fielding leaders’ questions to the Tánaiste on Thursdays and will continue in his role as finance spokesperson,” the Sinn Féin leader says.“Jonathan has worked closely with Pearse in the finance portfolio on issues relating to insurance, public sector pay and reform and will now sit on the Public Accounts Committee, in addition to his other responsibilities.“I wish them both the very best in their new roles. “I am currently engaged in a process of consultation with all of our Oireachtas members and will make further announcements in due course.”Doherty announced as Sinn Féin’s deputy leader in Dáil was last modified: February 23rd, 2018 by Elaine McCalligShare 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) Tags:Mary Lou McDonaldPearse DohertySinn Fein
SEATTLE — As soon as he woke up from his pre-game afternoon nap, Warriors forward Kevin Durant experienced something that he had never felt during his 11-year NBA career. He started feeling anxious.“I was just nervous,” Durant said. “I never felt that way going into a game, especially a preseason game.”This was not just any preseason game, though. Sure, the final score indicated the Warriors breezed through a 122-94 victory over the Sacramento Kings. The Warriors (1-1) showcased their …
The remainder of research spending was concentrated in the natural sciences (20.6%), medical and health sciences (14.6%), information and communication technologies (13.1%), social sciences and humanities (12.5%), and applied sciences and technology (9.1%). R&D spending increased from 0.6% of GDP in 1997, touching a high of 0.95% in 2006. The South African government spent R21-billion on research and development (R&D) in 2008/09 – R2.4-billion more than the previous year, but still short of its target of at least one percent of the country’s gross domestic product. Women researchers making strides Deputy Science and Technology Minister Andre Hanekom said his department would analyse the uptake on R&D spend, adding that not enough businesses had taken advantage of the department’s R&D tax incentive, introduced in 2006. Pandor said the findings of the survey indicated that South Africa needed to focus on boosting skills levels and increasing the number of post-graduate students – which currently stood at only 34% of all graduates. Private sector funding Pandor said she was concerned by the decline in the contribution of agricultural sciences, which fell from 6.8% of the total spend to 5.5%. She said comparisons with developing countries such as India, China and Russia indicated that South Africa’s share of global R&D had grown from a relatively low base, and that its R&D investment matched its relative economic size. 9 September 2010 The department’s survey, undertaken by the Centre for Science, Technology and Innovation Indicators of the Human Sciences Research Council (HSRC), revealed that South Africa has one of the highest proportions of women researchers in the world. Presenting her department’s National Survey of Research and Experimental Development report for 2008/9 in Cape Town this week, Science and Technology Minister Naledi Pandor also revealed that the country’s R&D spending had dropped slightly, from 0.93% to 0.92%of gross domestic product (GDP). Future targets, incentives She added that this was a specified outcome in the performance agreements she, as well as Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, Economic Development Minister Ebrahim Patel, and Higher Education Minister Blade Nzimande, had signed with Zuma earlier this year. The National Survey of Research and Experimental Development report for 2008 can be downloaded from the HSRC website. She said part of the country’s challenge was that research funding was dispersed according to sectors, which meant there wasn’t a central point of administrative control, leaving research areas largely dependent on the focus of particular departments. More post-graduates needed Pandor said President Jacob Zuma wanted spending on research and development to reach 1.5% of GDP by 2014. In other developing countries, the rate was much higher – at 2.9 in Argentina, 1.9 in China and 6.4 in Russia. Pandor said that despite South Africa’s R&D spend having grown five-fold in the last 11 years – from about R4-billion to R21-billion – more had to be done to meet the one percent target. The 2008/09 survey showed that women represent 39.7% of researchers in South Africa, compared to 13% in Japan and 33.4% in Norway. Among developing countries, Argentina leads the way with 51.4% women researchers. ‘More needs to be done’ Pandor said a key concern was that the number of researchers in South Africa (at 19 384 in 2008/09), which had previously remained stagnant at about 1.5 per 1 000 employees, had now slipped to 1.4 per 1 000 employees. This was despite R&D expenditure having increased 2.2% in real terms between 2007 and 2008, from R18.6-billion to R21-billion. The survey also found that the private sector accounted for 58% of spending on research, and that 24.4% of total research spending was in the field of engineering sciences – up from 22.5% in 2007. The survey found that, in 2007, India spent 0.8% of GDP on R&D, Russia 1.03%, China 1.44%, and Brazil 0.91%. Source: BuaNews
New visa changes have been introduced to address concerns raised by tourists, South African travellers and stakeholders in the tourism sector regarding revisions to regulations introduced over the last year.(Image: Department of International Relations and Cooperation)Brand South Africa reporterThe announcement was made jointly on Friday, 23 October by the Tourism Ministry and Jeff Radebe, minister in the Presidency for planning, monitoring and evaluation.#SouthAfrica to relax visa rules for visitors from #India, #China and #Russia, after tourism industry suffers pic.twitter.com/PisULYvinF— CCTV Africa (@cctvnewsafrica) October 24, 2015New visa rules, that came into effect in October 2014, required visitors to apply for visas in person at South African embassies to record biometric information. There was also a rule for children under 18 years old travelling in and out of South Africa to produce an unabridged birth certificate at entry ports, which included detailed particulars of the mother and the father of the child.While it has been noted by the government that these requirements were necessary to safeguard the best interests of children and prevent child trafficking, a recent Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on Immigration, spearheaded by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa, has now made several recommendations to deal with the security consideration and the unintended consequences of the regulations on various sectors, including tourism and investment.“In respect of South African children (outbound travel), the IMC accepted the implementation of the current child-travel requirements, including the parental consent affidavits as these seek to protect children,” Radebe said at a media conference on Friday. The new amendments will be implemented over the next three months to a year.The amended allowances now require South African children travelling through South African borders to have their parents’ identification and citizenship details printed in their passports, doing away with the requirement to carry unabridged birth certificates on entry or exit.For school tours and other group tours including under-age children, entry and exit regulations now only require confirmation letters from the school principals or a similar authority, along with the amended passport requirements. This authority will also be extended to include registered sports bodies on tour.“In respect of inbound travellers (international visitors), the IMC took the position that where visas are required, provision of original birth certificates or certified copies of required documents should continue during the visa application process, as this is in line with practice in many other countries,” Radebe said.Travellers from visa-exempt countries travelling with children will be strongly advised to bring with them proof of the relation and consent from the absent parents or guardians.Concessions that will take effect within the next three months include allowing people in countries where no South African missions exist to post their application to enter the country to the Department of Home Affairs.Radebe said the Department of Home Affairs would implement the biometrics, including fingerprints and photos, at the pilot sites at OR Tambo, King Shaka and Cape Town international airports.Cape Town Tourism chief executive Enver Duminy said in a statement the tourism industry would benefit from the approved recommendations that travel agents be allowed to make visa applications on behalf of clients and that the birth certificate requirement for travelling minors would no longer include the word “abridged”.FAQs: Business Visa for South Africa Read more here: https://t.co/dOd8yWdnJu #SouthAfrica#Immigration#Visa pic.twitter.com/ewdWs5ELbj— Auswandern Sudafrika (@AuswanderungSA) October 26, 2015To aid investment by international companies into South Africa, the department will also introduce an Accredited Tourism Company (ATC) Programme for China, India and Russia, with possible extension to other visa requiring countries.Additionally, within the next three months to a year, the Department of Home Affairs will increase Visa Facilitation Centres (VFC) in China, India, United Kingdom, Nigeria Democratic Republic of Congo, Angola, Ghana, Kenya and Uganda, while VFCs have been fast-tracked for November in Zimbabwe, UAE and Botswana.Corporate travel advisers Grant Thornton Advisory Services told News24 the changes would streamline visa requirements for foreign tourists to South Africa and would make it easier to obtain visas, thereby ensuring a much simpler process for travellers to the country.“These changes will most definitely assist in getting the tourism industry back on track,” said Lee-Anne Bac, Grant Thornton director.Travelling to SA soon? #SouthAfrica has revised its #visa rules. Check out the changes: https://t.co/d9OOEm7dVL pic.twitter.com/2NIbrUMIfQ— LelaMobile (@LelaMobile) October 26, 2015According to a Statistics South Africa report released in September 2015, the impact of the previous visa requirements had a sharp effect on tourists visiting South Africa. A comparison between June 2014 and June 2015 showed that, with the exception of France, the number of tourists decreased for all the other nine leading overseas countries. China had the largest decrease of 28.4% – from 5 823 tourists in June 2014 to 4 167 in June 2015.David Green, chief executive of the V&A Waterfront, said tourism had a powerful economic impact, and his group strongly supported the removal of any hurdles that impeded ease of travel to South Africa. “These recommendations can only bring about positive results for the industry.”Enver Mally, chairperson of Cape Town Tourism, said: “This is great news, just the kind of boost to our morale that we need as we enter the holiday season.”“We really have turned a corner”, says Tourism minister @Derek_Hanekom. https://t.co/CyI3nug2jz— 702 (@Radio702) October 26, 2015Here’s what you need to know about the changes to South Africa’s visa rules:In countries with no South African mission or embassy, Home Affairs will accept applications by registered mail, applicable to tourist and medical visitors only.These postal applications will then be finalised with the capture of traveller biometrics: finger prints and photos at selected port entries to South Africa – OR Tambo/Johannesburg, King Shaka/Durban and Cape Town international airports.South African children travelling out of the country will still be required to submit the current child-travel requirements, including parental consent affidavits as a means to protect the minors. These documents are valid for six months.Full details and identification and biometric information of parents will also be printed in the children’s passports; therefore they will not be required to carry the birth certificates. Home Affairs, however, does advise that this form of identification still be carried as an additional form of proof.For inbound travellers, proof of original birth certificates or certified copies will only be required during the application process, as this is in line with practice in many other countries.The South African government has agreed to amend the law that includes the term “unabridged birth certificate”, changing it to “birth certificate containing parental details”.Home Affairs is currently considering the possibility of issuing long-term multiple entry visas for frequent business travellers.The Department of Home Affairs said that “the mandate issued by government to the department is to put in place the necessary legal instruments to give effect to this decision. The status quo will remain until such time the [department] has provided a legal instrument for this category of travellers. In the meantime travellers are encouraged to comply.”Source: South African Government News AgencyWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.