A grassroots group has warned MPs that the terrif

first_imgA grassroots group has warned MPs that the “terrifying insecurity” caused by the government’s regime of disability benefit assessments is driving disabled women to destitution, and even “hastening their deaths”.WinVisible has submitted evidence to the Commons work and pensions select committee about the impact of the assessments on some of the many disabled women they have supported with their employment and support allowance (ESA) and personal independence payment (PIP) claims.The campaigning organisation, which is based in north London and provides information, advocacy and support to disabled women, says the ESA and PIP assessment regimes are causing “a terrifying insecurity” among disabled women, and leading to “suicides or admissions to NHS psychiatric institutions”.Benefit cuts imposed by the government and implemented by assessors from contractors Maximus, Capita and Atos cause “enormous suffering, destitution and [are] hastening deaths of sick and disabled people”, says WinVisible.The evidence has been submitted as part of the committee’s inquiry into the PIP and ESA assessment regimes.Last week, Disability News Service (DNS) reported how the inquiry had produced more online evidence from the public than any other investigation ever held by a House of Commons select committee.In its written evidence to the inquiry, WinVisible says many women experience “particular discrimination and suspicion” about their eligibility for disability benefits, including those with invisible impairments; those with mental distress; survivors of child abuse, rape and domestic violence; mothers deemed not eligible for support because they are caring for their children; and traumatised refugees.One issue raised in the WinVisible evidence is that of disabled women whose PIP or ESA claims have been disallowed because they have missed their face-to-face assessments.They provide details of one woman who lost her ESA entitlement because she was not able to run for a bus, due to a long-term health condition, and missed her assessment, even though she had rung the centre to tell them she would be 10 minutes late.Another woman helped by WinVisible, a mental health service-user and child abuse survivor, was placed in the ESA work-related activity group after her assessment, and was pressured to apply for jobs.On one occasion, when she turned up to a meeting in tears, an adviser for the government contractor Maximus told her: “You can choose to be a victim or you can go and get a job.”Maximus was forced to apologise, and following intervention by WinVisible and the woman’s MP, the Department for Work and Pensions agreed to place the woman in the ESA support group, for those with the highest support needs.Another disabled woman helped by WinVisible had her benefits removed for several weeks because she had to cancel a face-to-face assessment so she could attend an urgent NHS appointment.One disabled woman told WinVisible: “The hoop jumping, form filling and getting support to get benefits, and keep them, has pushed me to the end of sanity and destroyed my faith in the powers that be.“I have been made to feel like a criminal and guilty before being charged.”WinVisible also raised concerns in its statement about the number of disabled women who face “unjust and unjustifiable” rejections of their requests for exemptions from face-to-face assessments.Claire Glasman (pictured), from WinVisible, told DNS that many disabled women became suicidal because of their experience of the benefit assessment system.She said: “They are absolutely distraught that their situation and their needs are not being taken into account, and they are faced with destitution.“We felt strongly that we wanted to have our say on what is happening to us and the women that we know.“It is very, very serious because people’s survival is at stake.”last_img read more

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Drone Technology Takes Filmmakers to New Heights

first_img 0% “It’s a ‘what-am-I-looking-at’ kind of situation,” said Flying Robot’s founder, Eddie Codel, who is a Mission resident.   All of the animals were dead long before they were transformed into drones, he added.  “There’s different purposes and niches that have been created around drones – I wanted to highlight some of the things that normally don’t get a lot of attention at other film festivals,” he said. The act of building and repairing drones, he said, is part of the technology’s riveting fascination for many “dronies.” The “aerial cinema” festival was the first of of its kind on the West Coast, and while privacy and public safety concerns continue to narrate the conversation around drones, Flying Robot, focused on the technology’s unprecedented cinematic and humanitarian uses.“I truly feel that festivals like this are bridging the gap in showing that art and creativity can be captured with a drone by telling stories in a ways that we weren’t able to several years ago,” said aerial videographer Christopher Saad. “We want to show the public that they can be used for amazing things, for humanitarian reasons.”Flying Robot Film Festival founder Eddie Codel showcased the winning films, shot using drone technology, at the Roxie Theater on November 19. Photo By Rajiv RaoOther videos showed drones being used to test water quality, monitor poaching, and track rainforest deforestation.Yet regulations for the new and rapidly growing technology are still lagging. A task force assigned with developing registration rules for drones will submit its recommendations to the Federal Aviation Administration on Saturday.The push is an effort to keep track of the increasing numbers of drones entering national airspace, and comes as a result of “drone sightings” by airplane pilots and other alarming run-ins. In Seattle, a pilot attempted to fly a drone through a Ferris Wheel, causing the drone to crash. In the Mission, the technology is embraced with mixed emotions. Sam Durham, who was at the festival,  recounted how he was once confronted about his drone while attempting to fly on Bernal Hill.“Some guy came up to me and said ‘it’s the same technology used for so much chaos in the world,’” said Durham.  “I didn’t have a response for him at the time, but now I would say – ‘the same technology can be used for so much good.’”“I do think there’s a lot of fear around drones, largely because it’s a new thing,” said Codel. “But not all concerns are legitimate. Oftentimes when people complain about a drone spying on them it’s not actually the case.” When asked about the drone hype, Codel, who immersed himself in the hobby three years ago, explained that there is “something about a flying robot that is an extension of yourself.”Most of the drone and cinema enthusiasts that attended the festival attested to the drones’ unique ability of elevating film – and other industries –  to new heights. “Drones can be witnesses to things that we normally wouldn’t get to see,” said journalist and film critic Edie Sellers, who was one of the judges. “It’s revolutionizing all industries, from agriculture to film and journalism, and that’s why drones are so much of a buzzword at the moment.”Sellers said she was impressed with hundreds of submissions that organizers received from all around the world.  “Its an absolutely burgeoning market and drones have totally opened up filmmaking for the independent filmmaker – all of these overhead and crane shots that would normally cost thousands of dollars can now be done fairly inexpensively and quickly.”These “high-end” shots were evidenced in “Running into the Air,” the winning three-minute video by Austrian filmmaker Sebastian Woeber in the category “Cinematic: Postcard.”The clip depicts a breathtaking flight over Switzerland, in which the filmmaker steers his drone on a scenic tour past mountains tops, weaving through forests and flying just inches away from the surface of serene lake and rivers.“Often, drones encourage people to build and repair,” explained Codel. “It’s educational in the sense that we are learning about science, electronics, and learning how to be a good pilot.”The learning starts young, as became evident by the submissions in the festival’s Student Film category.  Quinn Muller, a 13-year-old student at the Mission-based Brightworks School, took the prize with “Electric Africa,” in which he tells the story of a solar energy company in East Africa, using drone videography. “There is no denying that technology is the future for our children – so it’s all about being raised with the right kinds of guidelines and motivations in mind in terms of how they’re using it,” said Quinn’s mother, Annie Muller, who accepted the award on his behalf. Her son is currently back in Africa, she explained, shooting his second drone film. The winner of the “drones for good” category of the first Flying Robot International Film Festival shows Mark Jacobson using humanitarian drones to “end the use of starvation and medical deprivation as weapons of war.”  In the video, Jacobson and others with the Syria Airlift Project can be seen airlifting life-saving supplies into war zones in Syria via drones.Other categories at the festival of 20 short videos shown Thursday at the Roxie Theater included Cinematic, Narrative, Student Film, I Made That!, WTF LOL, Aerial Sports, and Drones For Good.Perhaps most provoking was a video called “Compilation,” the winner of “I Made That!” category in which the five minute clip shows Dutch drone enthusiast and apparent taxidermist aficionado Bart Jansen turning his deceased cat – as well as an ostrich, shark, and rat – into a flying drones.center_img Tags: tech Share this: FacebookTwitterRedditemail,0%last_img read more

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SAINTS have further strengthened their partnership

first_imgSAINTS have further strengthened their partnership with South Stand sponsors Solarking.The agreement will see the company became the Club’s Official Green Partner and develop the successful existing relationship.Solarking supply, design, install and commission various micro-generation technologies including LED lighting, Solar PV and Thermal and Heat Pumps to commercial and domestic customers.They sponsored the South Stand in Saints’ inaugural season at Langtree Park and the agreement realises a significant investment in the club.“This partnership demonstrates we are leading the way in green innovation,” said Saints Head of Sales and Marketing Dave Hutchinson. “Solarking will become our Official Green Partner – a unique symbol of our commitment to sustainability.“Solarking have shown fantastic support for Saints since day one of our new home here at Langtree Park and to further strengthen our partnership is typical of the loyalty a local company such as Solarking give to the club.“We are looking forward to many new initiatives and working together in the future.”Andy Mikhail from Solarking added: “We are delighted to continue our partnership with the Saints. There is a strong synergy between both our brands and we are looking forward to developing that relationship further.”Solarking will write a Green Energy Blog each month to keep fans and commercial partners up to date with the latest news and will sponsor a special half time game which is sure to keep all fans and guests entertained.You can find out more about Solarking by logging on to www.solarkinguk.comlast_img read more

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NATHAN Brown expects his side to produce a strong

first_imgNATHAN Brown expects his side to produce a strong performance at Castleford following their disappointing loss to Hull KR last Friday.He reiterated the comments ahead of this Sunday’s clash at the Wish Communications Stadium.“The reality was we played bad wet weather football and they played smart wet weather football,” he said. “We expected to do better on the back of our two previous performances and we competed hard to give ourselves a chance, but didn’t kick well or play to the conditions.“Hull KR didn’t play a great deal better, but they kicked the ball early and put it on the ground.“We could have had Sonny Bill Williams on the right and it wouldn’t have mattered as we didn’t play smart. Poor old Stuart (Howarth) copped fair amount of flak but he didn’t get a chance to have an impact on the game. It’s probably not fair on him and he played with a nasty injury too. There’s a certain type of footy to play in wet weather and we didn’t do it.”He continued: “I’ve been involved at several clubs where there has been big change – we went through mass change twice at St George – but I know what we are doing here is right. However, the reality is the squad is fit and more than capable of doing well if we all buy in together.“When players are leaving it can go two ways – it can finish bad or players can go out on a high. A lot of it has to come from within the group and the departing players.“One we have just announced, Francis Meli, told the boys last week he was leaving but he wants to have a big finish.“But the reality is people know there are a lot of players going and we have young kids and well documented ones coming in. But everyone would agree with the players we have fit, if we hadn’t have lost them in the long term, we would have won our fair share of games and we wouldn’t be having these conversations.“It’s no coincidence that when we got James Roby and Jonny Lomax back, Jon Wilkin returned from suspension and Gaz O’Brien came in we had good results. That’s why the weekend was disappointing. I’m still optimistic for the end of the year but we have to play well.“We have a lot to play for going forward. The boys take pride in how they play and I’m sure there will be a statement on Sunday.”Saints face a Castleford side fresh off the back of a win over Wigan on Sunday – but Brown wants his charges to focus on their own performance.“If we play how we can then we will be hard to beat,” he added. “Daryl (Powell) has done well since he went there and Rangi Chase is a great player but we have to concentrate on doing the stuff we can do well.”Tickets for Sunday’s game remain on sale from the Ticket Office at Langtree Park and details are here.last_img read more

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HERE are another four players who will tour Austra

first_imgHERE are another four players who will tour Australia in October with the Academy.Kieron Herbert is a wing from Orrell St James.David Hewitt is a stand off who signed from Bold Miners.Morgan Knowles is a stand off or loose forward who signed from Barrow Island.Ross McCauley is a prop forward who signed from Bold Miners, having previously played at Pilkington Recs.Many thanks to the sponsors who made the trip possible for this quartet.They are:DJH Builders MB & D Clarke NewsagentsBrunskill’s The Body RehabCollins Reinforcements Premier WealthEnglish Homes Building ContractorLeck Construction Ltd North Devon Loft Conversions Ulverston High SchoolOne Stop CoatingsAnother four players will be introduced tomorrow.For all the latest tour news and player introductions, click here.last_img read more

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Salvation Army volunteers on the way to help Irma victims

first_imgWILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) –As Floridians start to pick up the pieces after Hurricane Irma, volunteers from the Salvation Army in Wilmington are on their way to help.“It breaks my heart, been through it, firsthand, seeing it. It really hits me in the feels because I know what they’re going through,” said Salvation Army volunteer Anthony Fox.- Advertisement – Irma barreled through Florida over the weekend, leaving devastation in its wake. The flooding in Jacksonville is some of the worst in more than 150 years.“As you see those storms coming on and you see the storm surges and you see the pictures and you watch the radar maps and you hear the voice of the weathermen and you just know what’s coming. You begin to start praying for the people who you know are in the impact of that storm,” said the Salvation Army of Wilmington’s Maj. Mark Craddock.As the victims of Irma try to pick up the pieces, they’ll have some help.Related Article: Track when storm debris will be picked up in WilmingtonVolunteers from the Salvation Army in Wilmington are on the way. They’ll operate a canteen and provide a hot meal, water, and other supplies to those affected by the storm.Fox has lived through hurricanes in Florida and says he’s excited to get the opportunity to help people in need.“Just getting a hot meal in their belly, something fresh in their belly is a good, uplifting thing. I hope we are able to minister a little bit and talk to folks and uplift their spirits and let them know we’re here and doing the best we can do,” said Fox.For fourteen days they will be helping, while showing the Port City that their contributions matter.“We’re very thrilled that we have the opportunity to support, one, our fellow Americans who have been impacted by Hurricane Irma, and then also just to help people in Wilmington to see that their investments in the Salvation Army really do pay off,” said Craddock.If you would like to contribute to the Salvation Army’s relief efforts for those affected by Irma and Harvey, financial donations are encouraged.You can go to helpsalvationarmy.org, call 1-800-SAL-ARMY, mail checks to The Salvation Army, PO BOX 1959, Atlanta, GA, 30301, or text STORM to 51555 to give.last_img read more

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CAPE FEAR HISTORY MYSTERIES Screen Gems Studios

first_img In this week’s edition of Cape Fear History and Mysteries, we take a look back at the Port City’s very own Screen Gems Studios. WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Lights, camera, action.Chucky Hues was a key grip that came to America in 1985 and was one of the very first to help Screen Gems and North Carolina become East Coast Hollywood.- Advertisement – last_img

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GenX remains in focus nearly one year later multiple bills filed

first_img “Protecting the environment should be rule one before we incentivize and allow these corporations to come in here and do what they’re doing,” New Hanover County Chairman Woody White said.A lot has happened since the region first learned about the chemical in the river.“So I look back on the last year and I see tremendous accomplishments and tremendous improvements, but still so much has to be done moving forward,” White said.Related Article: How school safety has evolved since 1999 Columbine school shootingThursday in Raleigh there was action.In an effort to get more answers, and address the needs of the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Environmental Quality, Representative Deb Butler, a New Hanover County Democrat, filed House Bill 968.However, the GenX plan more likely to come up for vote came a short time later — a compromise from Republicans.After failing to reach an agreement last winter, North Carolina legislative Republicans from our area have worked out a plan to fund research and clean up efforts for chemicals like GenX.Senators Michael Lee and Bill Rabon and Representatives Ted Davis, Holly Grange, Frank Iler and William Brisson filed identical bills in their chambers Thursday.“It’s one that I don’t think compares well,” Butler said. “Puts money in the hands of what’s called a collaboratory instead of the watchdog agencies that really have the power to stop polluters. So again, these folks in the general assembly have had a veto proof super majority well before GenX. If they had wanted to do something aggressive they could have, but ironically they filed it hours after I filed mine.”The Republican bills earmark $12 million for GenX, $8 million of which will go to UNC for research on emerging contaminants.It also gives Governor Roy Cooper the option to shut down the Chemours plant company responsible for the discharge.It’s a move Butler thinks is a setup.“When they give him a grant of authority, look behind the curtain and see what the true objective is,” Butler said.The Republican bills would also make Chemours provide water to the homes with private wells that were affected and funding for the Department of Environmental Quality to hire additional staff. WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — It’s been almost a year since we learned about GenX in the Cape Fear River.The StarNews headline about GenX in the Cape Fear River caused ripples around the region.- Advertisement – last_img read more

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New Hanover County establishes Donations Hub

first_img A drop-off center will open early next week to accept bulk amounts or pallets by reservation only.  The following items will be accepted at this site:BatteriesBlanketsBleachBroomsCleaning suppliesDeodorantDisposable razorsDiapersDry Pet FoodFeminine products and padsFormulaHygiene itemsMopsTowelsWipesThose who have bulk donations are asked to call the Donations Hub call center at (910) 798-7337 to schedule delivery. Smaller quantities of these items will be directed to organizations and other drop-off sites in the community.“The outpouring of generosity from our residents and those outside of New Hanover County has been astounding,” said New Hanover County Manager Chris Coudriet. “This Donations Hub allows us to coordinate the receipt of large donations and allows us to direct residents in need to appropriate resources.”Related Article: Oak Island Pier set to reopen WednesdayResidents in need of supplies can also visit EmergencyNHC.com or call the Donations Hub call center at (910) 798-7337 for information on where to pick up items they need. NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (NEWS RELEASE) – New Hanover County has established a “Donations Hub” to facilitate ways for individuals and organizations to donate supplies and volunteer to assist in hurricane recovery efforts in our community.Information on how to volunteer and where to donate needed supplies can be found at EmergencyNHC.com or by calling the Donations Hub call center at (910) 798-7337 which will be open seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. until further notice.- Advertisement – last_img read more

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Case for who is the rightful Columbus County Sheriff could be decided

first_img It’s been two months since Sheriff Greene was sworn into office. Hatcher challenged Greene’s oath of office a month ago. That was after the state board of elections itself said Greene should not have been sworn in.Now, final documents were submitted to the Columbus County Superior Court Tuesday in the case for who is the legal sheriff of Columbus County.The case was scheduled to go before a jury in possibly Pender County. Now it is confirmed that it will be a trial before a judge in Whiteville. That judge will ultimately decide who will be sheriff.Related Article: Multiple Tabor City homes struck by bulletsTuesday, Hatcher’s attorneys laid out several arguments for why Sheriff Jody Greene should not hold office. One being the lack of certification of the race by county elections officials.“..The Certificate of Election was not delivered/issued to Mr. Greene,” wrote the attorneys.Another reason being the appealed protests that are still pending a review by the newly appointed state board of elections. The Columbus County board of elections dismissed the protests.The attorneys go on to reference the question surrounding Sheriff Greene’s true residence. Greene has said his residence in Cerro Gordo is a camper that is mostly for his dogs. His wife, Angie, told us that was their actual home. Both saying state law allows for it.However, Hatcher’s attorneys cite county code that said a ‘camper’ is not considered a permanent dwelling. They claim Greene has no rightful home in Columbus County. They’ve asked the judge to determine that and if it is confirmed, then Greene would be violating state law and have no lawful claim to be sheriff in a county he does not live in.The attorneys even referenced our coverage on the issue.Initially, Hatcher was granted a trial to decide his case. On Tuesday, documents showed Greene wants a judge to decide the case out of court. Statements by Greene’s attorneys also claim Hatcher has shifted to desire the matter to be decided by summary judgment, outside a trial, as well.Hatcher’s attorneys submitted documents that say the former sheriff is requesting a ‘Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings’.Greene’s attorneys have asked for summary judgment in the case. That request of the judge comes as they claim most of the issues that Hatcher has brought up involve the state board of elections.“Most of the materials attached to his [Hatcher’s] motion for judgment are related to extrinsic matters pending before the North Carolina State Board of Elections,” said Greene’s attorneys also adding that, “Plaintiff [Hatcher] has not moved for summary judgment within the parameters of the Scheduling Order.”The depositions are expected to be seen by Wake County Superior Court judge A. Graham Shirley in Whiteville Friday. The expected bench trial is set for next week. WHITEVILLE, NC (WWAY) — The case for who is the lawful sheriff of Columbus County continues.Democrat Lewis Hatcher considers himself the rightful sheriff despite losing to Republican Jody Greene in the November election.- Advertisement – last_img read more

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Soon – New services within Physiotherapy Dept

first_imgThe number of services offered by the Department of Physiotherapy at St Luke’s Hospital will increase in the coming months. Furthermore, the department’s renovation project is scheduled to start during Summer and be concluded by end of October 2019.This was announced in a press release issued by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister and the Ministry for Health, which also explained that the renovation exercise and the increase in physiotherapy services are a result of a meeting between Deputy Prime Minister and Health Minister Chris Fearne, Steward Healthcare and the Malta Union of Midwives and Nurses (MUMN).News services will include exercises for persons suffering from Parkinson’s disease and multiple sclerosis, training sessions for persons who have suffered a stroke, rehabilitation following orthopaedic interventions, targeted services for diabetics and well as treatment for patients with neurological issues.WhatsApp SharePrint <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a>last_img read more

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Maltas economy projected to grow by 53 in 2019

first_img <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a> pexels.compexels.com Malta’s economy is projected to grow by 5.3% compared to a 1.2% average in the euro zone, the European Commission said on Wednesday.This means that Malta’s economy is expected to grow faster among EU member states in 2019, similarly it is projected to grow by 4.8% in 2020 compared to a 1.4% average of euro zone member states.Growth forecast for 2020: 4.8 3.7 3.6 3.4 3.4 3.3 2.8 2.8 2.8 2.7 2.6 2.6 2.5 2.4 2.3 2.2 1.9 1.7 1.6 1.6 1.5 1.5 1.5 1.4 1.4 1.3 1.2 1.2 0.7#ECForecast https://t.co/mGOHfCZNjw— European Commission (@EU_Commission) July 10, 2019In a statement the Commission said that the European economy is set for its seventh consecutive year of growth in 2019, with all Member States’ economies being projected to expand.GDP is projected to grow in all EU member states in 2019 and 2020, however the GDP growth in Malta, Central and Eastern Europe as well as Ireland will be significantly stronger, according to the projections by the Commission.Growth in the first quarter of the year was stronger than expected in the euro area due to a number of factors, the Commission said, citing mild winter conditions and a rebound in car sales among others.The Commission however warned that near-term outlook for the European economy is clouded by external factors which include global trade tensions and significant policy uncertainty. The manufacturing sector is the most exposed to international trade.The GDP forecast for the EU remains unchanged at 1.4% in 2019 and 1.6% in 2020.The forecast by the European Commission is based on a set of technical assumptions which concern exchange rates, interest rates and commodity prices with a cut-off date of 28 June.WhatsApp SharePrintlast_img read more

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Warid Telecom recognises top performers in customer care

first_imgAdvertisement students were selected from MUBS, Aptech, Uganda Christian University, Kyambogo University, Makerere University, Kampala University and Nkumba University to participate in the training. We took on this initiative to train students mainly to give them a chance to have basic skills of customer care because dealing with people and their problems are part and parcel of any career endeavor”.Flavia Waighala and Racheal Nampala emerged the best performers under the training. All students who partook in this exercise will become brand ambassadors in their universities and home areas effective today.Musoke Joseph, the Human Resource manager at Warid said, “This experience they have attained at Warid is going to boost their confidence in the way they communicate with various people and also open up job opportunities for them in future and we are proud to have given them this opportunity.”Students were rewarded with certificates of completion/achievement and Warid hampers for successfully completing the training. – Advertisement – Flavia waighala emerged the overall outstanding student and was awarded with Warid merchandise.This training will continue to happen on a monthly basis.last_img read more

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MTN Group Announces 2015 Financial Results

first_imgAdvertisement South Africa’s MTN Group Ltd., this morning announced a staggering 37% fall in profit for the year ended 31st December, 2015 compared to 2014 Financial Report. The telecom giant reported a 51.4% plunge ($1.3 billion) in headline earnings per share to 746c for the same time period. The tumble is largely attributed to the massive $3.9b fine by Nigerian regulators to the company’s Nigerian unit over an alleged breach of rules on SIM-card registration, hyperinflation in Syria, Sudan and Iran markets, and other stiff market conditions in their 22 countries of operation.MTN Group also noted 4.1% to 232.5 million growth in their subscriber base across MTN’s 22 markets. In a statement, the company credited this growth to a major focus on customer experience, competitive offerings, aggressive network roll-out and employee engagement which resulted in a successful turnaround in the second half of the year.“MTN Group’s 2015 financial results reflect the challenging operating environment the business experienced in the year,” the company said in a statement. “Weak macroeconomic conditions, increased market competition, heightened regulatory pressures, notably in Nigeria, and operational challenges in some of our markets resulted in a lower-than-expected performance.”“While the group operates across 22 countries, the earnings remain highly concentrated in a few markets, with the associated volatility and risks as evident over the past few years. To this end, management will continue to explore opportunities to address this over the medium term,” it said. – Advertisement – “While these investments are a short-term drag on reported earnings, they remain key elements in the long-term strategy of the group,” MTN said.MTN Mobile Money uptake continue to grow in UgandaThe 2015 financial results indicate a 55.8% revenue increase for MTN Uganda from MTN Mobile Money product. The report also notes a 56,3% MTN Mobile Money customers growth to 34,7 million across 15 countries. Ugandan Subscribers using MTN Mobile Money  rose to 9.5m comprising 27.3% of MTN Group’s Mobile Money subscribers. So while the general profit margin for the group was dented, MTN Mobile Money is only seen to grow tremendously.MTN Uganda registered a 2.8% revenue growth of Shs1.3 trillion in 2015, up from Shs1.267 trillion in 2014. Revenue from voice calls was seen to drop resulting from various factors like the implementation of the One Network Area among other factors. MTN Uganda’s data revenue rose by 17.4% to Shs365b, comprising 28.3% of total revenues.The full annual financial report can be accessed HERE.last_img read more

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Facebook Twitter and Youtube Face Hate Speech Complaints in France

first_imgImage Credit: brucegerencser.net Advertisement According to Reuters, 3 French anti-racism associations said on Sunday they would file legal complaints against social networks Facebook, Twitter and Google’s Youtube for failing to remove “hateful” content posted on their platforms.According to the French Law, they require websites to take down racist, homophobic or anti-semitic material and tell authorities about it.But French Jewish students union UEJF and anti-racism and anti-homophobia campaigners SOS Racisme and SOS Homophobie said the three firms had removed only a fraction of 586 examples of hateful content the anti-racism groups had counted on their platforms between the end of March and May 10, reuters reports. – Advertisement – Twitter removed only four percent, Youtube seven percent and Facebook 34 percent, according to the associations.“In light of Youtube, Twitter and Facebook’s profits and how little taxes they pay, their refusal to invest in the fight against hate is unacceptable,” UEJF president Sacha Reingewirtz said in a statement.Last year in December, Germany got Facebook, Google and Twitter to agree delete hate speeches from their websites within 24 hours.last_img read more

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Spotify Passes 40 Million Subscribers Widens Lead Over Apple Music

first_imgHeadphones are seen in front of a logo of online music streaming service Spotify in this February 18, 2014 illustration picture. REUTERS/Christian Hartmann Advertisement Swedish streaming music giant Spotify said Wednesday it had surpassed 40 million paying subscribers, consolidating its position as world leader.“40 is the new 30. Million,” the company’s co-founder Daniel Ek tweeted.A spokeswoman for the group confirmed to AFP that he was referring to paying subscribers. – Advertisement – The number is a 33-percent increase from March, when it had 30 million, putting it far ahead of its closest rival Apple Music which had some 15 million paying subscribers in June.At the end of June, Spotify said it had more than 100 million active monthly users, including both those who use the free ad-based service and the premium paying one.Music streaming has taken off worldwide this year, with the number of streams more than doubling in the first six months of the year compared to the same period a year earlier, according to trade specialists BuzzAngle Music.In the United States, the biggest market, there were 114 billion streams in the first half of 2016, exceeding for the first time the number of videos watched. After launching in Indonesia in March, Spotify is now present in 59 countries. But it has yet to post an annual profit, spending most of its revenue on compensating artists and rights-holders.Source: NDTV Newslast_img read more

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STAR PREVIEW Fiorentina v Dynamo Kiev

first_img[dropcap]L[/dropcap]imahl had a hit in 1984 with Never Ending Story. I feel a little bit like that with the Europa League.It does indeed tend to go on forever but the answer to this season’s never ending story should be known soon.We’ve reached the quarter final, 2nd leg, stage with three of the four matches televised tonight and all the games kicking off at 8.05pm.Fiorentina v Dynamo Kiev interests me the most. The first leg finished 1-1 with a last minute equaliser from Fiorentina’s Khouma Babacar giving them an away goal which could prove vital. Babacar misses out tonight though with a knee injury.Fiorentina are not in the best of form outside this competition, losing four of their last five games and come up against a Dynamo Kiev side tonight who are now seven games unbeaten and topping their domestic table by five points in Ukraine.Fiorentina v Dynamo KievUEFA Europa League Quarter-Final 2nd Leg8.05pm LIVE ITV 4HEAD TO HEAD RECORD(Maximum 10 matches)Apr 2015 Europa League Dynamo Kiev 1-1 FiorentinaNov 1969 European Cup Fiorentina 0-0 Dynamo KievNov 1969 European Cup Dynamo Kiev 1-2 FiorentinaAt 8/11 with Star Sports Fiorentina look a little short and I prefer the draw after 90 minutes at around 11/4.RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-50 points)BACK DRAW for 6 points at around 11/4 with Star SportsRETURN SINCE START OF WORLD CUP: PROFIT 70.31 POINTSWhat’s your view? CALL STAR SPORTS 08000 521 321last_img read more

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STAR PREVIEW Borussia Monchengladbach v Man City

first_img[dropcap]I[/dropcap]t was a bleak old night for the English clubs last night with a rude awakening in the Champions League for both Arsenal and Chelsea.The two Manchester sides get their chance on the European stage tonight and they are both a shade of odds on to win.Man U host Wolfsburg but the game that interests me most is in Germany.Borussia Monchengladbach v Man CityUEFA Champions League Group Stage19:45 BT Sport Showcase / BT Sport 2 / BT Sport 2 HDHEAD TO HEAD RECORD(Maximum 10 matches)Mar 1979 UEFA CUP Mgladbach 3-1 Man CityMar 1979 UEFA CUP Man City 1-1 MgladbachMan City are at a crucial stage of their season. It was only a short couple of weeks ago that the Premier League was considered done and dusted in some quarters, yet the table has a whole new look to it now with Man U now a point clear of their rivals.I’m not quite sure what the precise term for the opposite of ‘momentum’ is – but Man City have certainly hit that zone with three defeats from their last four games at the hands of Juventus in the Group D Champions League opener and Premier League defeats to West Ham and Tottenham at the weekend when they were brushed aside 4-1.So they are hardly heading into this match with confidence. Even under normal circumstances they suffer from the jitters in the Champions League and have lost seven of their last 11 games.This would certainly be a good time for City to find some form again and they really should be beating Monchengladbach who have failed to keep a clean sheet in nine matches this season which is the primary cause of their disappointing start to the Bundesliga season with just six points from seven games.City have their fair share of injury problems. Their captain Vincent Kompany is out with a calf problem and joins fellow defender Gael Clichy, midfielders Fabian Delph, Eliaquim Mangala, Samir Nasri and forward Wilfried Bony on the sidelines.I think there will be plenty of goals but can’t guarantee at which end – so the safest play looks the ‘both teams to score’ option at around 4/7 with Star Sports.RECOMMENDED BETS (scale of 1-50 points)BACK BOTH TEAMS TO SCORE for 12 points at around 8/11 with Star SportsRETURN SINCE START OF WORLD CUP: PROFIT 198.18 POINTSWhat’s your view? CALL STAR SPORTS 08000 521 321last_img read more

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STARTERS ORDERS Thursday

first_imgHORSE RACING1.00 SedgefieldGris De Pron 16/1 > 10/11.40 StratfordGood Man Pat 5/4 > 8/111.55 ClonmelPersian Wind 11/2 > 9/42.30 ClonmelHollow Tree 5/2 > 6/43.30 LingfieldChoral Clan 9/2 > 3/13.40 SegfuedlVisage Blanc 16/1 > 10/1EUROPA LEAGUEUEFA Europa League Group Stage18:00 BT Sport 24/9 Lyon 13/2 Everton 7/2 DRAWUEFA Europa League Group Stage20:05 BT Sport 2 / BT Sport 4K UHD4/9 Arsenal 13/2 Crvena Zvezda 4/1 DRAWBET WITH STAR SPORTS 08000 521 321 [dropcap]W[/dropcap]elcome to Starters Orders. Our daily midday update from the trading room at Star Sports with our key market movers for the day across all sports.Thursday 2 Novemberlast_img read more

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DAVY RUSSELL Thurles Saturday

first_imgAfter the Cheltenham Festival it was nice to get back to normality this week and I’m delighted to have ridden a couple of midweek winners for Gordon (Elliott).Final List (Navan, Monday) and Ocean Voyage (Cork, Thursday) both got their jobs done nicely and will hopefully go on and win more races this season.I stayed on in the UK on Saturday to ride Folsom Blue (pictured) in the Midlands Grand National which ended up being very attritional on the deep ground at Uttoxeter. He can be a bit quirky but he does keep plugging away and has entries for both the Aintree Grand National and the Irish Grand National next month.Looking back on Cheltenham I can’t deny it was a frustrating week but that can happen at such a competitive meeting and you can only beat yourself up afterwards if you feel you made a mistake or could have done things differently and I don’t think that was the case.Presenting Percy was never happy in the Gold Cup – he didn’t jump with his usual flair – there were no excuses with the ground but he simply never got into his comfort zone.It’s obviously transpired since that he was found to be lame in his right hind. The only thing I can think of, looking back, is that we got a bump from the horse that came down at the first (Kemboy) and I don’t know, but maybe that could have caused some problems?Earlier on Gold Cup day I thought going into the last that Coeur Sublime was going to win the Triumph. But Nico’s (de Boinville) horse Pentland Hills stayed on really well in what I thought was a very good renewal of the race.Delta Work travelled well for me in the RSA but he just into the second last which halted his momentum at a crucial stage, he was staying on well again up the hill.This weekend I am riding at Thurles on Saturday – my thoughts below and I’ll be back on Saturday evening looking ahead to Downpatrick on Sunday.SATURDAYTHURLESDARLING MISS (3.30pm)I’m riding her for the first time so don’t know much about her as yet. She’s been beaten a long way in her three starts to date, so we need to see an improvement as she gets stepped up in trip from the last day at Clonmel. She has placed form in point to points so hopefully the test of stamina will suit her here too.CUBOMANIA (4.05pm Pierce Molony Memorial Novice Chase)Makes a quick reappearance after I had to pull him up in the Close Brothers Handicap Chase at Cheltenham. The combination of the ground and trip may have gone against him there and the step back in trip and better surface will hopefully see him bounce back to form. Stable companion Duca De Thaix will also be suited by the quicker ground and could prove hard to beat.STOOSHIE (5.15pm)A horse I’m beginning to know really well. He made a pleasing start to his chasing career when third here but took a step backwards the last day at Naas when down the field. We need to see an improved run from him here and hopefully get him back in the right direction.GOOD LUCKDAVYIf you have a question for Davy drop us a line at content@starsportsbet.co.uk and we’ll try and include in the next blog…last_img read more

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