‘Plastic Rice’ Infiltration: A Result of Liberia’s Failure to Prioritize Agriculture

first_imgThe rationale of the emphasis regularly made in our editorials for government and Liberians to prioritize agriculture and to reduce over-dependence on imported rice is manifesting itself at a higher level. Besides the skyrocketing price of rice on the Liberian market, fake rice, reportedly made from a mixture of plastic and sweet potato, has surfaced. This manufactured rice first appeared in Nigeria sometime ago and was reported by the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC).Today, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry is dwelling on media reports to warn all rice importers to adhere to standards for importing quality rice into the country in order to possibly prevent the spread of such rice on the market. The National Standards Laboratory has gone ahead to test the Butter Brand White Rice with results showing an organic sample that has the characteristic of normal rice. The Commerce Ministry, in the wake of this circulating information, has gone further to inform commerce inspectors and LRA Customs Officers to alert relevant authorities including the Ministry of Health of the possibility of fake rice on the Liberian market.Well, government is creating strategies, if it is true that this fake rice is indeed infiltrating the market, to prevent this product from overwhelming the Liberian market; but is it enough to institute a system now when we do not even know how long this product has been around, if at all? Is Liberia’s standards division effective enough to tackle this problem in this volatile economic environment of ours? We hope the mercy of God will save us from further health problems as our indolence leads us to eat anything we see and touch.This is a country endowed with all natural resources that man needs to survive, but we Liberians and our government have resolved not to make use of one of the most important, the fertile land on which sun shines and rain falls almost on a daily basis. As government gives less attention to farming and other activities required to enhance food production and processing in the country, so are citizens complacent with city life and abandoning agriculture to live in Monrovia and other urban areas, feigning education, stealing in their workplaces and begging in the streets.This culture has grown to the extent that even if a good and responsible government institutes a strict policy to compel everyone to concentrate on agriculture, voracious politicians will undermine it by polluting the minds of citizens with destructive ideologies.  Liberia had this instance in 1979 when the administration of slain President William R. Tolbert increased the price of parboiled rice from $22 per 100 lb to $26. According to the Free Encyclopedia, Agriculture Minister Florence Chenoweth did that to add an inducement to farmers to stay on the land to produce rice as both subsistence and cash crop. Minister Chenoweth at that time thought that the step would help to motivate farmers to continue farming and not to abandon it for jobs in the cities.Not carefully studying the pros and cons to constructively engage government, the so-called Progressive Alliance of Liberia (PAL) politicized the action and put people in the streets on April 14, 1979. The rioters ended up looting properties worth millions of dollars. The failed Progressives propagated information to the public that the step was meant to create income for the Tolbert family and a few others that were engaged in large scale rice farming at the time. Since then, rice has become a political commodity that every succeeding President either handles with care or faces fierce criticism and street protests.Due to our dependence on imported rice, no leader has stepped up to the podium to reawaken the dreams of, or do a similar thing as Tolbert’s and Doe’s agriculture and economic policies: “The Total Involvement for Higher Heights,” or “Green Revolution.” The presence of these policies encouraged farmers to produce more rice and led to the forming of many agricultural companies including Bong County Agriculture Development Project (BCADP) and Nimba County Rural Development Project (NCRDP). Today, no attention is paid to people striving to invest in agriculture in Liberia; but instead, all eyes are on rice importers.Being a people who don’t invest in what we eat is even contradictory to God’s plan for man. In the Holy Bible that many Liberians subscribe to, God, before creating man, made a garden that contained all kinds of fruits, vegetables, nuts, cereal, maize, animals, etc. He then made man to manage this garden and to eat all fruits, except one (the tree of knowledge of good and evil), which we cannot question. This indeed shows that the God Liberians worship attaches great importance to agriculture as the major source of food for mankind, but we prefer to disobey Him and rely on food produced by others for our collective survival.Now that our dependence is inviting health dangers with speculation that ‘plastic rice’ is being imported and sold on the market, let the government take some measures to restrict the flow of rice and empower local farmers to engage more in production of our staple food and others. Let the government reduce taxes on agricultural materials and prioritize locally produced fruits, vegetables, maize, tubers and rice. Liberians on the other hand should now learn to restrain their appetite for imported rice and other manufactured foods from outside and give preference to what they can produce. We hope this will not be misunderstood as political rhetoric, but rather a piece of advice to save us from future danger.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

JUDGE ORDERS ARREST OF DONEGAL ELECTION CANDIDATE OVER YOU TUBE CLIP

first_imgThe High Court has ordered the arrest of a Donegal candidate in this month’s local elections over her failure to remove allegedly defamatory posts about a town council on YouTube.Judge ordered the arrest of Patricia McCafferty.Mr Justice Paul Gilligan ordered that independent candidate Patricia McCafferty be arrested and brought before the High Court for alleged contempt in the face of orders directing her to remove the video clips. The Irish Independent reports the orders were sought by lawyers for Bundoran Town Council which claims its members and officials have been defamed in the posts where allegations of corruption, fraud, and intimidation are made by Ms Cafferty, a former traffic warden who was dismissed in 2008 by the council.The court heard the YouTube clips are entitled “What Bundoran Town Clerk is really like” and “Bundoran Joint Policing SHAM cover up assaults and quash speeding fine”. It is claimed they are highly defamatory.Orders were granted by the High Court against Ms McCafferty of Rockingham, Main Street Bundoran on May 1 last compelling her to remove both the YouTube posts and large signs located in the town alleging the members and officials are corrupt.The signs have been removed since the court orders were obtained.However, she has failed to remove the YouTube material.Ms McCafferty was not present in court.The court was told that in addition to the posts and the signs, Ms McCafferty had followed and filmed ordinary council workers going about Bundoran doing various work.She also turned up at council meetings and had to be asked to stop video recording the proceedings.Last year, the council obtained injunctions against Ms McCafferty, preventing her publishing allegedly defamatory material after she turned up at council meetings wearing a high visibility jacket with “Bundoran Town Council are Corrupt” written on it along with pictures of eight of the nine town councillors.Yesterday, Mr Justice Gilligan said he was satisfied Ms McCafferty had breached the court orders.He directed that she be arrested and brought before the court next Tuesday.JUDGE ORDERS ARREST OF DONEGAL ELECTION CANDIDATE OVER YOU TUBE CLIP was last modified: May 17th, 2014 by StephenShare 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:donegalDonegal County CouncilelectionPatricia McCaffertyYou Tubelast_img read more

Donegal families to welcome Chernobyl children next week

first_imgFamilies from across Donegal will welcome children who have been affected by the Chernobyl disaster to the county next week. A group of 11 children – seven of which will travel to Inishowen – will arrive in the north-west from Belarus and Ukraine on Wednesday (June 26) to experience what it is like to live in Ireland.More than 30 years ago the Chernobyl nuclear disaster launched a radioactive cloud across much of Europe. The catastrophe has once again been played out on our television screens, in a drama being rated one of the best shows of all time. The children are staying with host families for four weeks and it is estimated that the cleaner air prolongs the children’s lives by up to two years.During this time, they will have a full programme of activities and will visit local attractions.In 1986, the fourth reactor at the Chernobyl Nuclear Plant, which is located 12km south of the Belarusian border, exploded.To this day, large numbers of people in Belarus live in contaminated areas which has no access to clean food. It is estimated it will take up to 400 years to rid Belarus of contamination many children exposed to the have damaged immune systems.In 1988, 83 children were revealed to have thyroid gland problems. In 1989 the number was 807, and in 1990 it had risen to 9,924.More than €12,000 in donations have been made during the screening of the harrowing HBO and Sky Atlantic series in recent weeks.Chernobyl Children International’s (CCI) founder and voluntary CEO, Adi Roche welcomed the spike in donations but said the charity is down significantly on its 2019 budget.She said: “We are a long way from where we need to be. We hope the success of the series will translate into increased donations. But we have been at this for 30 years. “This disaster fades from the headlines, and from the memories of ordinary people but this series has quietly taken the world by storm.“It has revealed the truth, it tells the inconvenient truth and honours the stories of those involved,” Roche added.“It manages to get behind what really happened in a digestible fashion for people who are not nuclear scientists. With its raw truth-telling, this series has burst the bubble of lies and deception and cover-up.“It has re-inspired us and re-enthused us.” If you would like to host a child next year please contact the Foyle and Inishowen outreach group press office on 0863903030. Donegal families to welcome Chernobyl children next week was last modified: June 21st, 2019 by Shaun KeenanShare 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)last_img read more

San Jose Sharks can’t catch a break this year on video reviews

first_imgSAN JOSE — The Sharks just can’t catch a break this season when it comes to official reviews.Friday night against the Winnipeg Jets, a review by the NHL’s Situation Room cost the Sharks the chance to take the lead in a game for the first time in a week.After Barclay Goodrow scored at the 3:18 mark of the second period to tie the game 1-1, the Sharks thought they had the go-ahead goal as Evander Kane chipped one past Jets goalie Connor Hellebuyck at the side of the net.But the Jets challenged …last_img read more

South African artistic talent goes global

first_imgMinister of Arts and Culture Paul Mashatile said South Africa’s participation is significant for the country and its art community. (Image: Wilma den Hartigh) Kay Hassan, Weighing Time, 2007. Installation with found objects. (Image: SMAC Art Gallery, Stellenbosch and Renzske Scholtz) MEDIA CONTACTS • Fiona Gordon  The Famous Idea  +27 11 446 7046 RELATED ARTICLES • Art infects the Mother City • Giving rhinos a voice through art • ConCourt art tells SA’s story • African Guernica: life becomes art Wilma den HartighSome of South Africa’s top artists will be representing the country at the 55th International Venice Biennale, one of the world’s most prestigious contemporary art exhibitions that takes place every two years in Italy.Speaking at an event yesterday to launch the exhibition, Minister of Arts and Culture Paul Mashatile said South Africa’s participation is significant for the country and its art community.“By participating in events such as the Venice Biennale we are offering massive opportunities for our artists to showcase their talent on the world stage,” Mashatile said.This year the exhibition titled Imaginary Fact; Contemporary South African Art and the Archive, aims to showcase established and upcoming artists who use materials of the past to comment on the contemporary.The Department of Arts and Culture appointed the National Arts Festival (NAF) to curate and stage the South African exhibition.“The exhibition is about the protection and preservation of our national heritage and the symbols and artefacts of that heritage,” Mashatile said. “It is also about using the arts to question and challenge our reading of the past, to reach a new understanding of it and to craft a new and inclusive narrative for our country.”Nomusa Makhuba, a representative of the curatorial advisory committee for Venice, said the NAF is confident the exhibition, which precedes the 20th anniversary of South Africa’s constitutional democracy in 2014, will allow the world to reflect on the country’s history and achievements.“It will also give the international community a window to look into the South African journey from its dark and horrid past to one that promises hope and opportunity,” Makhuba said.The South African exhibition in Venice will take place from 1 June to 24 November 2013. Top artists tell SA’s storyNumerous artists such as David Koloane, whose works were created to interrogate the narratives from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), will be on show in the historic city of Venice.The work of Gerhard Marx, Maja Marx and Philip Miller also draws inspiration from the TRC. The trio, counted amongst South Africa’s leading contemporary composers, created confessional video installations which draw on the opera REwind: A Cantata for Voice, Tape & Testimony, and provides a visual account of the emotions of death, despair and loss that were embedded within the TRC processes.Extending the use of digital images in the exhibition, videos by Penny Siopis will question the myths and narratives around the attempted and later successful assassination of HF Verwoerd, the architect of apartheid.Sue Williamson’s work will explore the psychological and logistical effects of the apartheid pass book, which black people were required to carry with them at the time when travelling outside their homelands or designated areas.Images from Capetonian photographer Andrew Putter’s latest exhibition Native Work will also be on display.The National Arts Festival has commissioned new work from Wim Botha, Kay Hassan and Cameron Platter to be showcased at the Venice Biennale.Other artists who will be representing the country include Joanne Bloch and Johannes Phokela.Work focusing on the experiences which inspired South African artists in the 1950s and 1960s will be featured through the photolithographic work of Sam Nhlengethwa, who is considered one South Africa’s most senior visual artists. Opening doors for SA artistsIn 2011, after South Africa participated in the Biennale again for the first time in years, Mashatile took a strategic decision to ensure that South African art continues to feature prominently on the international stage – in this case the Biennale.The Department of Arts and Culture recently secured a 20-year lease in the Arsenale, Sale d’Armi Building D for the South African exhibitions.Mashatile said since South Africa’s participation in 2011, accomplished artists such as Mary Sibande, a multi-media artist, has been invited to exhibit her work extensively in Italy, France, America, Reunion Island and Holland.“We are confident that the 55th la Biennale di Venezia will be one of our best arts exhibitions at an international level,” Mashatile said.• Slideshow image: David Koloane’s Made in South Africa (Twilight), 1994, oil pastel on paper. Courtesy of artthrob.co.zalast_img read more

Estate Planning & Military Families Webinar Series

first_imgJoin us on Sept. 5 at 11 a.m. ET for this 90-minute webinarMany of you joined us for Estate Planning and Military Families – Part 1 on August 22. This 90-minute webinar focused on general estate planning practices, including advance directives, wills, living wills, DNRs, last letters of instruction, and trusts. If you were unable to join this session, you can view the recording here. To earn CEUs, follow in the instructions for taking a quiz on this session’s content that are located at the bottom of the Learn page.The questions posed by participants in Part 1 indicated our audience is ready for some more detailed information on this topic, and on September 5, Part 2 will provide it. Dr. Martie Gillen, Part 1 presenter, will be joined by Attorney Mary Benzinger. Ms. Benzinger is a senior attorney with the Pentagon Army and Air Force Legal Assistance Office and will provide detailed estate planning information for military families. For important connection details and other information about this session, click here.There is no registration required and this session is free. We hope to see you online on September 5! This post was published on the Military Families Learning Network Blog on August 29, 2013.last_img read more

Preparing for an Emergency, including Natural Disasters Part 1

first_imgNational Preparedness Month, observed each September, encourages Americans to take steps to prepare for and respond to emergencies, including natural disasters. Emergencies can happen in your home, school, business, and community at any given moment.After the terror attacks on September 11th, the federal government renewed interest in disaster preparedness, mandating all state and local governments to create a disaster response plan. To help execute this plan, Cooperative Extension has positioned their system to assist with community disaster preparedness and response efforts by offering several disaster-related educational programs that are available through Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN).These resources can be found on their website,  https://eden.lsu.edu, and also on their YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/EDENvideoslast_img read more

‘Rohingya entering India through Bengal’

first_imgThe police in Manipur have said that Rohingya refugees, displaced from Myanmar’s Rakhine region, are increasingly entering India through human trafficking corridors along the West Bengal-Bangladesh border.More than 300,000 Rohingya have fled from Myanmar and taken refuge in Bangladesh.The Manipur police came to know about the trafficking routes after the arrest of eight Rohingya in Imphal on Monday. The eight had fake Aadhaar cards in their possession.Of the eight, Md. Younus and Md. Anwar had arrived in Manipur last week. Md. Ismail followed them with five minors, travelling from West Bengal to Guwahati by train and to Imphal by road.While Younus and Anwar took refuge in Bangladesh three years ago, Ismail fled Rakhine last year. A Bangladeshi agent helped them to enter India.“A series of drives against illegal immigrants led to the arrest of several Rohingya from the (India-Myanmar) border town of Moreh, Tengnoupal and Imphal during the past few months,” Manipur DGP L.M. Khaute said.The police are also examining the involvement of local agents after the arrested Rohingya said a Bangladeshi agent, Md. Ayub, had helped them cross over to Bengal. Ayub’s wife Sultana is a resident of Imphal, and the police said she arranged the stay of the immigrants. The Manipur police had arrested nine Rohingya last week. They had fake Aaadhaar cards prepared by two Moreh-based locals who were later arrested.last_img read more

Man whipped in Madhya Pradesh for not coming to work

first_imgAn employee of a petrol pump in Madhya Pradesh was beaten by the owner and his friends for taking leave.The incident took place in Hoshangabad district where the employee identified as Ajay was tied to a pole and thrashed with a whip for not coming to work.”I wasn’t able to go to work for 5-6 days as I had met with an accident,” Ajay said. He mentioned that the owner and two of his friends called him at the petrol pump to punish him.The accused also made a video of the incident which is doing rounds on social media now.#WATCH: An employee at a petrol pump in Madhya Pradesh’s Hoshangabad being thrashed with whip for not coming to work. Both accused arrested. Victim says, ‘I met with an accident so didn’t go to work for 5-6 days. Owner&his friend called me at pump&beat me’.(NOTE: Strong Language) pic.twitter.com/HjNaQa6PteANI (@ANI) July 6, 2018The date of the video is unspecified. In the video, the owner can be seen beating the victim while he tries to give an explanation.ALSO READ: Dalit man thrashed for riding bike in MPALSO READ: In Rajasthan, man thrashed for riding mare during baraatALSO WATCH: Dalit youth thrashed for sporting moustache in Gandhinagarlast_img read more

Klopp senses silverware opportunity

first_imgLiverpool Klopp claims cups bring opportunity, not pressure, for Liverpool Ben Spratt Last updated 2 years ago 21:52 18/9/2017 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Comments(0) JurgenKlopp - cropped Getty Images Liverpool Jürgen Klopp Leicester City v Liverpool League Cup The Reds have not lifted a trophy since 2012, but their manager says that does not worry him, nor is he concerned by the form of Premier League rivals Jurgen Klopp says he feels no added pressure going into the third round of EFL Cup as he seeks to end Liverpool’s trophy drought.The Reds’ last piece of silverware arrived in this competition in 2012, and Klopp views participating as an opportunity to end the wait to lift a trophy again, insisting any external pressure is dwarfed by the expectations he has of himself.Klopp’s men 9/1 to win EFL Cup Article continues below Editors’ Picks ‘I’m getting better’ – Can Man Utd flop Fred save his Old Trafford career? Why Barcelona god Messi will never be worshipped in the same way in Argentina Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing And the Liverpool boss also claimed his side cannot spend too much time worrying about the form of rivals Manchester City and Manchester United, who are already five points above the Reds in the Premier League table.Asked if he felt under additional pressure ahead of facing Leicester City in the EFL Cup on Tuesday, he told a news conference: “For me, no. I’m not sure if there is pressure on us. I don’t feel pressure.”I feel opportunity, I feel the chance to do something really good. I see the opportunity to win a very, very interesting cup competition.”I probably have pressure, yes, but it cannot be bigger than the pressure I put on myself – and I’m used to that. That’s what we try to do.”I watch the games of United and City because it’s interesting to see, but it’s not my job to count points and say ‘now they have this lead’.Five matches in… pic.twitter.com/ssDmpziP2K— Premier League (@premierleague) September 17, 2017″They are obviously in a good shape and moment, but a season is sometimes like this. As long as you are really focused, as long as you are ready, as long as your attitude is 100 per cent, you don’t have to look at other teams.”Klopp confirmed Danny Ward will play in goal for Liverpool and expects a repeat of the outrage that followed his decision to rest Simon Mignolet for Loris Karius against Arsenal.”It’s crazy – three goalkeepers in one season without injuries and things like this,” he joked. “I can’t do it, no.”Of course, Danny Ward will play [on Tuesday] if nothing happens overnight.” Subscribe to Goal’s Liverpool Correspondent Neil Jones’ weekly email bringing you the best Liverpool FC writing from around the weblast_img read more