Radio Salem in Cape Mount Ransacked

first_imgMr. Samuel Faley: “I’m appealing to the Liberia National Police (LNP) in the county to quickly intervene in this situation.” Station mute after losing US$16K transmitter, accessoriesSuspected armed robbers wearing masks early Monday ransacked Radio Salem (90.5 MHz) in Bamballa, Porkpa District, Grand Cape Mount County, and made away with the station’s broadcasting equipment and accessories.The station has gone off the air after losing its equipment leaving listeners inconvenienced and upset, the Daily Observer has learned.According to reports reaching this paper, it is not yet clear if security officers assigned at the station were on duty at the time of the robbery.Radio Salem aired its first broadcast in 2012, and covers eight of the 15 counties as well as neighboring Sierra Leone and Guinea.Samuel Farley, the station’s chief executive officer, told our reporter via mobile phone on Monday that the robbery has denied the locals news, and other information on government’s development agenda.  He said the station has been very instrumental in providing information, education as well as entertainment to Cape Mountians.He estimated the cost of the transmitter (1000watts) and other equipment at US$16,000.According to Farley, without the contributions of community radio stations, rural communities would not get to hear and know of the major activities the Government of Liberia is either planning or embarking on.“So seeing the equipment being taken away by some unscrupulous individuals is very disheartening. We call on the Liberia National Police (LNP) in the county to quickly intervene in this situation,” he added. Meanwhile, the county police detachment has launched an investigation into the incident, but no arrest has been made.Farley is appealing to all well-meaning Cape Mountians and the county’s legislative caucus to make financial contributions to get the station back on the air.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Could you be seen as the terrorist next door?

first_imgI was an ordinary American until Nov. 27, 2006, when I became a terrorist, or more accurately, what I call a “stand-by terrorist.” Perhaps I cannot truly own this newfound nickname until the government decides to prosecute me for word crimes, if that day ever arrives. Until then, I just think of myself as being on stand-by, just as are most – if not all – Americans, whether they realize it or not. You may wonder how words can amount to a terrorist act in the land of the free and home of the outspoken. It is not widely known, but Congress last year passed legislation called the Animal Enterprise Terrorism Act, which can be used to prosecute civil disobedience and speech as “domestic terrorism” when an animal-related business loses profits and property. The act also protects corporations that pollute and destroy the environment. You may ask: What does this have to do with me because I’m no nature fan or animal lover? Well, it could eventually have very much to do with you because the AETA – a natural child of the Patriot Act – is likely to be the first of many assaults on the social-justice movement in favor of corporations and other moneyed interests. If you think you may want to use your free speech some day to criticize something, anything, then you had better be very concerned. You should also be concerned about whether law enforcement protects you from the bin Ladens of the world or fritters away your hard-earned tax dollars investigating pacifists. The American Civil Liberties Union says the FBI uses “counterterrorism resources to monitor and infiltrate (nonviolent) domestic political organizations that criticize business interests and government policies.” An FBI special agent recently told me that planting undercover agents at legal, peaceful events – with hopes that they will somehow learn about illegal activities – is a favored tactic of the bureau. What are the parameters of AETA and who could be tangled in its web, slapped with prison time and branded a terrorist? Could Oprah Winfrey – the beloved and successful talk show host – and her former vegetarian guest, Howard Lyman, be prosecuted as terrorists if they were to repeat anti-beef comments made to Winfrey’s 15 million viewers in 1996? It is indeed possible, because the AETA is overbroad, vague and subject to the whims of law enforcement. That much was evidenced last year when six young, New Jersey Web site operators became the first individuals convicted on “animal enterprise terrorism” charges. The young people were part of the Stop Huntington Cruelty campaign, which targeted the Huntington Life Sciences animal research labs. The site operators did nothing more than assert their First Amendment rights: They posted videotape of tortured dogs inside HLS and reported the legal and illegal handiwork of activists, which eventually caused the corporation to lose profits and to be dropped from the New York Stock Exchange. The FBI was unable to catch the underground activists, so it targeted the Web site operators, who are serving up to six years in prison for their speech. If the government fails to catch a thief or saboteur, should it be allowed to pursue the CNN reporter who delivers the news? Or an outspoken op-ed columnist? Or six kids from New Jersey with a Web site? The AETA ignores Shakespeare’s recommendation, “Don’t shoot the messenger,” potentially stigmatizing a “speaker” with the most heinous, post-9-11 label in America: terrorist. America is about nothing if it is not about fairness and free speech. The AETA does not comport with this image. It is unjust and unconstitutional, and it interferes with the prosecution of real terrorism against the American people. Once we faced a “red scare”; now we are bombarded with a “green scare.” The time has come to ask yourself: Do you really want to be on stand-by or do you want to take a stand? And are you now, or could you someday be, the terrorist next door? Charlotte Laws, Ph.D., is the author of a chapter of the 2006 book, “Igniting a Revolution: Voices in Defense of Mother Earth.” She is founder and president of the Los Angeles Directors of Animal Welfare and is a member of the Greater Valley Glen Council.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

Junior cricket in India remains pock-marked with greed, mismanagement, corruption

first_imgPLAY AND POWER: Juniors at nets at a camp in BangaloreOnce upon a time there was an ambitious young man who played cricket. He was a reasonable under-19 player but wanted more. So, at 25, he became the president of his state cricket association. It wasn’t enough: in November 2000,PLAY AND POWER: Juniors at nets at a camp in BangaloreOnce upon a time there was an ambitious young man who played cricket. He was a reasonable under-19 player but wanted more. So, at 25, he became the president of his state cricket association. It wasn’t enough: in November 2000 he walked into the change room of his state cricket team, appointed himself captain and played a Ranji Trophy match. He scored zero and took two wickets, but the cricket didn’t matter. That match had made him, son of Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister P.K. Dhumal, a first-class cricketer. It is a very important piece of fine print because the BCCI’s rules allow only first-class cricketers to be made national selectors. The young man’s name is Anurag Thakur and today he is a member of the national junior selection committee. The country’s best under-19 talent is picked by, among others, a man who chose to strong-arm his way into a first-class team because he was their boss. Thakur is now manager of the India under-19 team as it readies to defend its World Cup title in New Zealand this week.Even though it began with “once upon a time”, this is not a fairy tale. It’s a true – and unpleasant – story about the national junior programme which stays unnoticed because of the bright lights and high-profile concerns of the stars. In this foundry of Indian cricket, there is anarchy on the factory floor.National junior selectors V. Chamundeswaranath, Bhagirath Thakore and Ashok Bhagwat at a match in VadodaraThe method used by Thakur to become a national selector is a symptom. From the very top of the pile, the BCCI and its selectors, down to the club coach and even pushy parents, junior cricket is pock-marked with greed, mismanagement and even corruption. When the juniors step onto the big stage they are not bursting with confidence and ambition, they are a mass of insecurity and confusion. Because this is the world they come from:None of Thakur’s colleagues on the junior selection panel is a former India player. Four out of six members of the national junior cricket committee are not first-class players. Thakur’s modus operandi is obviously pioneering.An under-16 player accused a Mumbai Cricket Association junior coach and office worker of demanding Rs 25,000 from him for a spot in an under-16 selection tournament, Rs 50,000 for a place on the Mumbai junior team and Rs 1 lakh for a West Zone place. The office worker was suspended but an inquiry is still on against the coach. A Mumbai-based 20-year-old told INDIA TODAY that a cricket official had said he could be selected for the Baroda Ranji Trophy team for Rs 1 lakh. He has given up his ambitions of playing a higher level of cricket ever since.A North Zone National Cricket Academy (NCA) coach sent his wards out to buy his daily dose of chewing tobacco. His accompaniment to slipcatching practice to the youngsters was a backward glance – for spitting.The probables picked for the under-19 World Cup this year were refused permission to play practice games at the M.A. Chidambaram stadium in Chennai because of a BCCI faction – fight between the officials who run the ground and those in charge of the team’s preparation.Two members of an Indian under-15 team for the World Cup in July 2000 were declared overage by doctors for a national under-19 competition in October that year.But hold on a moment. This must be a mistake: in the past six years, India have won the under-19 World Cup, the under-15 World Cup, and are under-15 and under-17 Asian champions. There are, on average, 322 official junior matches played in India every season across four age groups.advertisementThe national team should have a big hungry pack nipping at their ankles. The fact that it hasn’t means something has got lost in the transition. By the time quality is strained through the agendas of coaches and the ego of officials, fragile talent has been lost. Robust survivors learn an altogether unsavoury game.SELF-SELECTOR: Himachal cricket chief Anurag Thakur made himself state team captainFormer Hyderabad Cricket Association secretary P.R. Man Singh says, “Junior cricket is in a pathetic state because nobody pays attention to developing good traditions. The better youngsters are the ones who do not have the money to appease or please the corrupt selectors.” The phrase “corrupt selectors” is not considered heresy any more and not just in junior cricket. There are those who allege that in the late 1990s no less than three players had to give senior selectors a cut of their match fees.Says former Bengal Ranji player Raju Mukherjee: “Selectors are normally called jokers and not without good reason. They can easily be bought over.” Mukherjee, a Bengal under-16 coach in the 2000-1 season, walked out of a selection meeting when the panel picked a player who had scored three ducks and a 12 in four matches.advertisement After Mukherjee refused to field the boy, he was told not to accompany the team for their final league game, where the boy played. “There is nothing wrong with the boy but he hadn’t performed,” Mukherjee says. The traumatised teenager, who could hardly understand what was happening, came to Mukherjee’s home and wept. Mukherjee has since been removed as Bengal under-16 coach and looks after the under-14s.”There’s not only a price for selection but also for being able to attend a trial. I know coaches who sell forms for attending trials in the black market,” says one Delhi cricket official. “Only about 60 per cent of all state teams are selected on merit.” An under-14 selector from Tamil Nadu presents another equation. “Of 16 guys, at least 12 are selected on merit,” he says. “As for the rest, the association succumbs to pressure from influential people. But even meritorious guys think a godfather is necessary.”THE BOYS IN BLUE: India’s under-19 team for the Junior World Cup has survived a system defined by its arbitrariness and corruptionMan Singh remembers occasions when an under-14 side travelled with as many parents as players. The purpose: to keep the coach and selectors in good humour. Mumbai-based Dr Kinjal Suratwala, who works with Mumbai junior teams, says, “Parents look at cricket as a profession, and every parent believes that his child is destined to play for India. The youngsters who play now are more anxious.”He has also noticed another more insidious trend. Young players arrive at representative level armed with something more lethal than a surprise bouncer. “Bad coaches teach not just bad technique but wrong attitudes. Kids of 15-16 know how to suppress a rival, how to manipulate. If you are captain you don’t give enough overs to someone you consider a threat to yourself,” says Suratwala. “Coaches must be role models, trained people. But ‘mushroom coaching’ found in big cities means anyone with access to a cricket pitch becomes a coach.”A junior selector from Tamil Nadu agrees, “There is no system of coaching, nor are there any set standards. The Tamil Nadu Cricket Association is detached from the camps.” It is estimated that there are more than 100 “clinics” in Delhi, with all and any stripe of “cricketer” running them. A respected Delhi coach says, “The problem is that the star players who run clinics think that mere se zyaada kisi ko nahi aata (no one knows more than I do). It’s a mindset.”STARTING BLOCKSSullied Selection: Cricket officials often bow to the dictates of power and influence while picking junior teams.Coaching Cons: Clinics run by former players who are not trained coaches teach bad habits and bad attitudes.Pushy Parents: Cricket is seen as a viable profession by ambitious parents.Former England fast bowler and coach Frank Tyson has worked with Mumbai and India juniors from the early 1990s. “At the moment there are too many coaches coaching wrong techniques which worked for them,” he told INDIA TODAY. “What do they do when the same techniques do not work on youngsters? They then have to unlearn bad habits before they can learn the correct way. India needs a National Coaching Accreditation Scheme.”advertisementWhen the NCA invited applications for a coaching seminar last year, four “star” player-coaches from Delhi had to take the help of a less glamourous peer to help them fill in the preliminary test questionnaire.When a cricketercoach or a secretary of a club doubles up as a selector, objectivity is history. Says India junior coach Balwinder Singh Sandhu: “Junior coaches want to win trophies and not to develop skills. That way they are known as coaches you must go to.”Of all the state associations, the Delhi & District Cricket Association (DDCA) sets the standard in maladministration and corruption. “There are all kinds of clout available in Delhi and people use anything,” says a Delhi-based BCCI official.DDCA selections are pure farce. Twenty players are routinely named on squads to accommodate all kinds of sifarish (recommendations) and sent on tour. Goons threaten junior selectors and routinely, the best talent available to Delhi selectors is neglected and moves to other states. India under-19 player Mihir Diwakar’s move to Bihar is only the latest example.The issue of cheating on age has been addressed with a rule that requires every junior picked for representative cricket to undergo a mandatory age test through X-rays of the wrist and the jaw. BCCI President Jagmohan Dalmiya has turned his attention to junior cricket with a blur of hyperactivity.Former India captain Dilip Vengsarkar is now the director of the Talent Resource Development Programme, and has been given the job of selecting five “talent spotters”. There is now a move on to “coach the coaches” in order to have some kind of uniformity down the line for technical and physical training received by young cricketers.But how does this earnest endeavour weigh up with the personnel who will finally judge who plays and who doesn’t for an India junior team? NCA Director Brijesh Patel believes that the selection of the selectors is critical. “The BCCI needs to do a rethink on its policy of appointing selectors. They have to sort out the system because it’s most important at the junior level.” Patel also lists the order of priorities in junior cricket-coaching, selection, pitches, quality of umpires.Those conclusions do not require an advanced degree in lateral thinking; but given the political compulsions inside the BCCI they are very difficult to achieve. Because the cricket doesn’t matter, of course. Thakur’s elevation to the junior selection committee is directly linked to his ability to swing the four deciding votes that helped Dalmiya win a fractious election in Chennai last September.Only when the cricket begins to matter will there be the realisation that while many people and most things may have their price, there are still some jobs which cannot be gifted away. Until then, expect little joy and fewer miracles from Indian cricket.- with Amarnath K. Menon and Arun Ramlast_img read more

Gilas with two injured big men as next Fiba window nears

first_imgLOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion “I was told that Andray will be ready by February 1, so we’ll see if he can make it,” said Guiao. “That’s going to give us around three weeks to prepare with him but if he’s in shape when he gets here that’s going to be a big help.”Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño ONE: Robin Catalan dominates Indonesian bet for unanimous decision win SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Big men Raymond Almazan and Troy Rosario are both sidelined due to injuries without concrete timetable for return, putting their participation in the national team’s crucial game against Qatar in Doha in peril.National team head coach Yeng Guiao knows they have to settle things quickly since their next game on Feb. 21 could very well determine if Gilas, who holds a 5-5 record and are in the fourth seed of Group F, advances to the World Cup.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool stars“There’s some things we need to settle, first is the injury to Raymond and we have to know exactly what his medical situation is including Troy,” said Guiao after his club team NLEX lost to Rain or Shine, 96-87, in the PBA Philippine Cup Friday at Cuneta Astrodome.“We have to determine if they can make it because if no, we have to think of replacements.” Is Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola?center_img MOST READ SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte MANILA, Philippines—Ahead of a crucial stretch in the Fiba Basketball World Cup qualifiers, Gilas Pilipinas is looking at a few bumps in its preparation.ADVERTISEMENT Almazan is nursing a sprained left ankle while Rosario suffered a broken nose during a tune-up game with NLEX right before the New Year.Rain or Shine’s center expressed his regret that he’s on the sideline with an injury instead of being in top shape for Gilas.“It’s disappointing because I was given a new chance to represent the Philippines and now I’m injured,” said Almazan. “I just hope I make it back in time.”Almazan stepped on Norbert Torres’ foot in practice and that fall aggravated his previous injuries on the same ankle.Guiao added that he can still change the pool of players for the next Fiba window especially now that he has the option of taking Andray Blatche.ADVERTISEMENT View comments TS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIESlast_img read more

24 days agoLiverpool boss Klopp prepared to be dumped from Carabao Cup

first_imgAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Liverpool boss Klopp prepared to be dumped from Carabao Cupby Paul Vegas24 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool are still waiting to learn of their Carabao Cup status.The Daily Mail says Liverpool have yet to receive any indication from the EFL when they will discover their fate after fielding an ineligible player in the Carabao Cup win over MK Dons. The strongest sanction is expulsion from the competition – manager Jurgen Klopp says Liverpool must accept whatever punishment is given.”If it was our fault,” said Klopp, “we need to get punished.” last_img read more

Raheem Sterling hailed as one of worlds best by Kompany

first_imgLondon: Vincent Kompany has hailed Manchester City teammate Raheem Sterling as one of the best players in the world after his 13-minute hat-trick in the 3-1 win against Watford. The victory at the Etihad on Saturday took the defending champions four points clear of Liverpool at the top of the Premier League table but Jurgen Klopp’s men closed the gap to a single point on Sunday. There was an offside debate over Sterling’s first goal and his second was a tap-in but his third highlighted his skill as he weaved into the area, cut back and fired past Ben Foster. Also Read – Dhoni, Paes spotted playing football together “It’s incredible because his first year at City was tough, and then from the moment Pep (Guardiola) came in he just kicked on and went from strength to strength,” said City captain Kompany. “For me, he is one of the best wingers in the world. He’s so important for us. To have the ability to unlock defences when they defend with so many bodies is the sign of a top, top, top player.” Sterling’s strikes shifted what had been a frustrating game decisively in City’s favour. As in their two previous games, the score was 0-0 at half-time and City, despite dominating possession, needed to work hard for openings. Also Read – Andy Murray to make Grand Slam return at Australian Open “These kind of games are much trickier than what people can see from the outside,” said Kompany, who has featured in City’s past five games. “It’s mentally demanding because it puts you to sleep that you have so much possession and are bouncing against the same wall.” City boss Pep Guardiola was more measured in his praise for Sterling, 24, who has now scored 20 goals for club and country this season. “He scored three goals, we’re delighted, but he can do better,” said Guardiola. “The first half was not the best performance from him, but it’s good when not playing at the top level to be consistent and score the three goals.” Guardiola hailed midfielder Ilkay Gundogan as an “incredible player in all senses” but again expressed concern over the German’s contract situation. The 28-year-old has not been an automatic starter under Guardiola and has just one season remaining on his present deal. Guardiola said: “I would prefer him to stay but at the same time I want to feel he wants to stay too. If he doesn’t want to stay, he has to leave.”last_img read more

Sunny Deol escapes unhurt in Gurdaspur mishap

first_imgGurdaspur: Actor-turned politician Sunny Deol escaped unhurt after his vehicle was involved in a collision with three cars here on Monday, police said. The mishap occurred after one of the tyres in Deol’s sports utility vehicle burst near a ‘Gurdwara’ in Sohal village here, Gurdaspur Deputy Superintendent of Police (rural) Manjit Singh told PTI. A total of four vehicles collided with each other in the accident. Deol’s cavalcade was going towards Fatehgarh Churian where the BJP candidate had to campaign, the DSP said. “Out of four, one vehicle belonged to a villager, rest other vehicles were part of Deol’s cavalcade,” he said. Nobody was hurt in the accident, he said. After the accident, Deol resumed his journey to Fatehgarh Churian for poll campaigning, the DSP said. Deol is pitted against Congress candidate and sitting MP Sunil Jakhar from Gurdaspur Lok Sabha seat.last_img read more

Ohio fans accustomed to disappointment mediocrity

I grew up watching great high school football in Cleveland: St. Ignatius, St. Edward, Glenville, and even the big Cincinnati schools like St. Xavier and Elder. All these teams were excellent, but I was an Edward’s girl through and through. I love seeing players that I watched in high school play first for top-notch college teams and occasionally the NFL. I knew the kind of talent drinking Lake Erie water can get you. But, when St. Ed’s started to decline after my senior year, I wasn’t surprised. Why? Because I’m an Ohio fan.Being an Ohio fan means getting used to disappointment. As a Clevelander, I’ve had teams that were this close to making history. The Cavs’ trip to the semifinals last season or the Indians’ bids for the World Series in the mid ‘90s were the most poignant disappointments in my memory. Though I was heartbroken when these teams inevitably lost, I was secretly expecting to be disappointed. Why? Because I’m an Ohio fan — and every year is a rebuilding year for us. There is always a “next year” for the Ohio fan.This “next year” attitude encourages mediocrity in both the fans and the players. Look at our own Ohio State football team, it seems to me that they only play as well as their opponent. Against the University of Spoiled Children, our Buckeyes truly rose to the occasion, and almost won, too. But against teams like Toledo and Illinois I felt like we held back, even though our starters stayed in for most of the game. The Bucks don’t play every game like it’s the big game; if they did, it would lead us to winning seasons, to national championships and could even elevate Tressel to the hallowed level of Woody Hayes.Mediocrity is not limited to the Buckeyes, but is an epidemic in the NFL, too. Look at the Browns vs. Bengals game this weekend. Aside from some excellent running by Josh Cribbs and some good interceptions and throws by Cinci, it was a choke-off. It almost ended in a tie for crying out loud — a tie in professional football! Did you know that could happen? I didn’t, and neither did some of the players. If the Bengals’ kicker had missed the field goal, it would have happened. The two pro-football teams in Ohio would have tied each other in yet another demonstration of our state’s mediocrity.Yes, I’m bashing Ohio teams with all the rage of a scorned lover. That’s the key word, though: lover. I will never stop rooting for my Browns, my Indians, my Cavaliers and most of all my Buckeyes, even when I inevitably leave Ohio. I want them to be amazing, to startle the pundits who talk endlessly about Tim Tebow and Brett Favre (who really aren’t that good. Just saying). I want us to win national championships and Super Bowls. Heck,I’d just like for us to have good seasons. I’m a true Ohio fan, in good times and bad, but I’d like an end to year after year of bad and a lot more good. read more

Matheney brings work ethic to OSU

The presence of senior tackle Don Matheney is far less intimidating than his 6-foot, 300-pound frame initially suggests. Instead, Matheney is soft-spoken and undeniably optimistic. Before he enrolled at Ohio State, Matheney was enrolled at the College of Holy Cross. There he endured 40-plus hours of homework a week to meet the demands of a Holy Cross athlete. Matheney contributed his first two seasons as a Crusader, but suffered a season-ending injury during his sophomore season transferred to OSU for his junior season after tuition increased at Holy Cross. Coming from a school with an enrollment of 2,900 to the 55,000 at OSU has been a huge change, but one that Matheney appreciates. “There is less one-on-one time with the teachers, but I really like it: the classes, the environment, the atmosphere.” Classes have been Matheney’s main focus since he transferred, as he was not eligible to compete his first season as a Buckeye. Per NCAA rules, as a transfer student-athlete, Matheney was required to sit out his junior season. His senior season was his first opportunity to help the Buckeyes on the defensive line. These events have only fueled Matheney’s optimism, however. When asked how he stays even-keeled despite what is required of him as a student-athlete, he simply responds, “I don’t even think about it … I just do what I have to do.” Not only does he do what he has to do, he does more. As he strives to complete a history of art degree along with a computer science degree, he does the work required to make an impact for the Buckeyes, on and off the field. In 2009, reported the OSU football team had a 62 percent graduation rate. With a genuine desire to be a Buckeye, a motivated attitude to graduate and a humbling presence, Matheney will increase the number of OSU’s graduating athletes and better the reputation OSU’s athletic department holds so dear. read more