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Lofa Farmers Take Step toward Mechanized Farming

first_imgFor the first time after the Civil war in Liberia, Lofa County farmers have received a tractor from the Ministry of Agriculture to help boost the level of production of food in their county.Lofa County is known as Liberia’s leading breadbasket. Agricultural production in the county is greatly practiced by almost everyone.Farmer Mohammed Kamara, executive director for the Agriculture and Infrastructures Development in Lofa earlier this week told the Daily Observer, that Lofa farmers had completed the plowing of 18.2 hectares with the tractor.The machine is helping to expand their acreage and substantially reduce the labor cost.      “For the first time after the war, we the Lofaian farmers have begun practicing mechanized farming through the help of the MoA and its partners,” Kamara stated.He disclosed that the tractor was in county to be used by the various farming organizations.“We have also received power tillers from the USAID Food and Enterprise Development (FED) Program for our low land rice project,” he disclosed.USAID FED supports more than 30 lowland rice farming organizations in Lofa County with modern farming equipment, in order to help  make the county self-sufficient in rice and to reduce poverty.According farmer Kamara, their agricultural project is meant to empower farming communities to improve their income-generating capacity.Mr. Kamara said he and his fellow farmers were in need of loans to enable them to  improve their production.A few months ago Liberia’s Agriculture Minister, Dr. Florence Chenoweth, stressed the need for the government of Liberia to prioritize mechanized agriculture in order to improve the productivity of local farmers and to boost the country’s food security.  Speaking at the Ministry of Commerce and Industry conference held in Monrovia, Dr. Chenoweth  said  Liberia will greatly impact food production if only Liberian farmers were given the opportunities to practice mechanized farming.She lamented that the Agriculture Ministry has only 13 tractors to be distributed to various farming organizations across the country.Liberia’s agriculture budget stands at 2.4 percent with additional funding (loans) from external sources. The government of Liberia is yet to prioritize the Maputo Declaration on Food Security, which mandates African countries to set aside 10 percent in their national budget every year for agriculture.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Police: State worker embezzled $320,000

first_imgSACRAMENTO – Police say a state worker responsible for buying staplers, binders and furniture falsified at least $320,000 worth of expense reports, loading up her home with a flat-screen TV, hot tub, gazebo and iPods. She even hawked enough items to buy a new Lexus sports car. Carey Renee Aceves, 34, of Natomas, a former procurement analyst with the state Department of Child Support Services, faces charges of embezzlement, grand theft and possession of stolen property. She was booked last week into the Sacramento County Jail and released on $80,000 bail. Police say Aceves, who makes $62,064 annually, had covered her tracks for months. But her activity triggered a state audit after she attempted to file an unusually large number of expenses in December. California Highway Patrol investigators said that when they visited her home Feb.1, Aceves admitted to the racket and led officers on a tour, pointing out items she had bought with her state credit card. She also sold some items purchased with the card and used that money to buy other items. Among the purchases: an electric cat blanket and self-cleaning cat litter boxes; satin and tulle formal gowns in pink, aqua and white. In the garage, police said they found the Lexus – an SC 430 model valued at more than $65,000. State officials say their investigation of Aceves may expand. She was involved in purchasing for the state Department of Fish and Game from 2000 to 2005. 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

‘LVG has lost senior players, Woodward phones Mourinho’s agent’ – latest reports

first_img1 Jose Mourinho Saturday’s back pages are dominated by speculation about Louis van Gaal’s future as Manchester United manager.The Dutchman is under increasing pressure, with Thursday night’s Europa League defeat to Danish minnows FC Midtjylland the latest low in his difficult reign at Old Trafford, and Jose Mourinho continues to be linked with his job.Here’s what the papers are saying…The Daily Mirror:  Manchester United have made a desperate SOS call to Jose Mourinho – with Louis van Gaal on the brink of the sack. Struggling United’s executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward is believed to have contacted Mourinho’s agent Jorge Mendes on Friday morning to see if the former Chelsea boss is willing to take over from Van Gaal before the end of the season.The Sun:  Manchester United made a frantic call to Jose Mourinho’s agent over fears he was heading back to Inter Milan. Club chief Ed Woodward is still publicly backing boss Louis van Gaal despite the Europa League embarrassment against Danish minnows Midtjylland. But as Mourinho issued a statement making clear he does not need to tout for jobs, Woodward phoned agent Jorge Mendes within hours of his return from Denmark.Manchester Evening News: Louis van Gaal faces three games that could seal his fate at Manchester United. United face Shrewsbury in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Monday amid growing fears that the squad has reached such a low ebb that they could be the victims of a giant-killing. Van Gaal then hopes to turnaround their first leg Europa League defeat to Midtjylland when the Danish minnows head to Old Trafford next Thursday. A  crunch seven days ends with a Premier League clash against title-chasing Arsenal that could cut them further adrift of the race for the top four. Another set of damaging results could effectively call time on his tenure.The Guardian: Louis van Gaal has lost the confidence of a group of senior Manchester United players and José Mourinho is their preferred option as his replacement. While Van Gaal is generally well liked among the squad, this influential faction has been unsure for a while about him being able to turn the side’s fortunes around. Thursday’s dismal 2-1 defeat at Midtjylland in the Europa League last-32 first leg has reaffirmed this view of Van Gaal, with players uneasy about his tactics and training methods. Mourinho is seen as the man who can return the club to winning ways.The Daily Telegraph: Manchester United chief executive Ed Woodward remains set on resisting the prospect of appointing Jose Mourinho in place of his struggling manager Louis van Gaal as the club’s embattled manager faces a run of five games in 14 days beginning on Monday.last_img read more

Suit disputes water supply

first_imgSANTA CLARITA – Two environmental groups are suing the Castaic Lake Water Agency over its regional water management plan, alleging the document encourages rampant development and betrayed the public trust. The lawsuit filed Monday in Ventura Superior Court by the California Water Impact Network and Friends of the Santa Clarita River seeks an injunction against the 2005 Urban Water Management Plan the agency adopted in November. State law require water agencies every five years to update the document, which anticipates local water supply for the next 20 years and discusses how to meet projected demand and development. Environmental groups have regularly challenged CLWA’s report, because an invalidated report or supply reduction could stymie future development. The suit alleges the plan relies on excessive ground water pumping and uncertain water deliveries from the State Water Project to supply what plaintiffs believe is “unsustainable urban growth within the Santa Clara River Valley.” “It did not come as a surprise,” he said. “If you look at who’s suing us, they’ve been involved in numerous lawsuits against us. “I truly expect us to prevail, for the benefit of the public and the environment. We have folks that are telling us we’re not doing our jobs, and they’re doing the darndest to make sure that we don’t do our jobs.” The 2005 plan predicts that regional water demand could spike by 2030 to 138,300 acre-feet per year as the Santa Clarita Valley’s population jumps from 250,000 currently to more than 428,000. Local water supply from all sources – including allocations from the State Water Project, groundwater and recycled sources – is projected at 125,680 acre-feet for 2030. Proposed transfer deals, water-banking programs and decontamination of polluted wells could add about 86,700 acre-feet. An acre-foot is the amount of water required to cover one acre one foot deep, or 325,851 gallons. But the plaintiffs contend the numbers remain grossly misstated, in particular with state water allocations. “A lot of things are based on hope – ‘We hope things will turn out fine,”‘ said Ron Bottroff, chairman of the Newbury Park-based Friends of the Santa Clara River. “That’s not a good way to increase the population to 400,000. … They don’t look at the real world. We want them to look at the real world.” The suit alleges the water plan ignores potential reduction of water deliveries from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta, which feeds the California Aqueduct, because of global warming and court challenges. Among them is a 3rd District Court of Appeal ruling in February that water exports may be limited to preserve water standards for the San Francisco Bay and the rivers, Volker said. “If the total quantity of water is reduced, each contractor’s share of the total quantity of water is reduced as well,” he said. “We believe Castaic’s share of water will be reduced substantially.” “Water agencies are attempting to make it appear that they have plenty of water for development,” Bottroff said. “We don’t think it’s there. We think these plans ought to be more realistic in the way they predict water availability.” The river group along with the Sierra Club had sued CLWA over the 2000 Urban Water Management Plan, alleging similar concerns. The 5th District Court of Appeal in 2004 invalidated the plan on grounds it did not adequately address contamination of local groundwater by perchlorate, a rocket fuel ingredient that has been linked to thyroid problems. “We got them to change their old plan,” Bottroff said. “But this is the 2005 plan, and it’s still flawed. “The only way you can get them to change anything is to go to court.” The lawsuit also disputes whether 41,000 acre-feet of state water the CLWA acquired for $46 million from the Wheeler Ridge-Maricopa Water Storage District in Kern County – a transaction that’s still disputed in court by the Planning and Conservation League – should be included in the 2005 plan. Eugene Tong, (661) 257-5253 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORECasino Insider: Here’s a look at San Manuel’s new high limit rooms, Asian restaurant “We want the water agency to set aside the defective plan and set up an adequate one, and for local land use agencies to hold off approving new developments until the water agencies know just how much water they will have,” plaintiff’s attorney Stephen C. Volker said Tuesday. The suit also names water retailers Newhall County Water District and Valencia Water Company as defendants. CLWA General Manager Dan Masnada declined to comment on the suit, which is under review by attorneys. But he said he believes the agency’s water plan will stand up in court. “We’ve not only complied with the letter of the law, but we’ve gone beyond what’s required in the Urban Water Management Planning Act in a number of respects,” he said. “We’ve complied with both the letter and the spirit of the law. The agency oversees Santa Clarita Valley’s state water allocations – roughly half the annual supply. It has faced environmental groups, including both plaintiffs, in courts off-and-on since at least 1999, spending close to $1 million a year on legal fees, Masnada said. last_img read more


first_imgTHERE was traffic chaos in Letterkenny this afternoon as thousands of Christmas shoppers combined with a broken down lorry to bring motorists to a standstill.Gardai sealed off the Port Road for a time as a repair crew tried to address the matter.And traffic around the roundabout at Tesco ground to a halt.  MORE TRAFFIC CHAOS AS MAIN ROAD CLOSED was last modified: December 9th, 2011 by BrendaShare 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:letterkennylast_img read more

White Sox dig the long ball in blowout

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 One sign in the stands summed up hopes on the South Side: “2004: Their Sox. 2005: Our Sox.” Then again, Boston has done fine overcoming October deficits. The Red Sox rallied from 3-0 down to beat the New York Yankees in the AL championship series last year before sweeping St. Louis in the World Series for their first title since 1918. “That was a long time ago,” Boston manager Terry Francona said about last season’s run. “It’s a different team. I’ve said so many times that last year doesn’t matter. What matters to this team is how we bounce back (today).” Game 2 in the best-of-five series is today at U.S. Cellular Field with Chicago’s Mark Buehrle facing Boston’s David Wells. Jose Contreras pitched effectively into the eighth inning, ending Boston’s eight-game postseason winning streak that carried the team to its first title in 86 years last season. The White Sox hope to end a drought that’s even longer, dating way back to the days of “Shoeless” Joe Jackson and their most recent World Series crown in 1917, the last time they won any playoff series at all. CHICAGO – A.J. Pierzynski homered twice, Paul Konerko, Juan Uribe and even Scott Podsednik also connected, and the Chicago White Sox scored five times in the first inning Tuesday en route to a 14-2 rout of the World Series champion Boston Red Sox in their playoff opener. “It’s nice when you get a game like this, but we’ve played enough of the other ones to not expect this,” Konerko said. “I don’t think we really felt comfortable until we were up eight, 10 runs.” center_img 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

Magogo to step aside as FUFA boss, Justus Mugisha to take over

first_imgMoses Magogo will step aside to allow investigations into the sale of World Cup tickets. (PHOTO/Courtesy)The federation of Uganda Football Association (FUFA) president, Moses Magogo will step aside for two months to allow FIFA investigate the alleged sale of the 2014 World Cup tickets.This was revealed at the annual FUFA General Assembly that was held on Saturday, 28th September in Adjumani district.Speaking in front of several delegates, Government official and Journalists, Magogo made the revelation that shocked many.“At the beginning of this Assembly, said that I have good news to tell you, started Magogo.“The good news is that there is a case that was filed to FIFA to tarnish the person of the president.“It (case) can go on for ages but to dispose it off once and for all, I was advised to step aside for two months as the investigations go on.“I am very sure that the truth will be known and I will be able to bounce back.”The said case was filled by Katwe FC president Allan Ssewanyana who also doubles as the Makindye West Member of Parliament.Ssewanyana who is also the shadow Minister for Sports in the opposition government petitioned Magogo over the alleged sale of tickets that were allocated to Uganda ahead of the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.The petition was filed on 30th May 2017 to the FIFA Ethics and Integrity Committee.It should be noted that for every FIFA World Cup tournament, a particular number of tickets is allocated to each federation prior to the championship.In Uganda’s case 177 tickets were allocated but none, according to Ssewanyana were sold to Ugandans.The news of Magogo’s stepping aside shocked the Nation and football fraternity and it remains to be seen where it all ends.However, it was revealed on Saturday that FUFA first vice president Justus Mugisha will deputize for Magogo in his absence.Comments Tags: Allan SsewanyanaFifaFIFA World cupFUFAFUFA General AssemblyJustus MugishaMoses Magogotoplast_img read more

Second jobs boost a ‘vote of confidence’ for South Donegal – Minister McHugh

first_imgMinister Joe McHugh has today welcomed the announcement of plans for a major retail development project in Donegal Town which will bring hundreds of jobs to the area.Plans for a proposed €10M development at Milltown are due to be submitted to Donegal County Council in September which would bring an extra 400 jobs to the region.News of the new retail project follows an announcement by Abbott Pharmaceutical that they are to create up to 500 new jobs through an expansion in Donegal. Minister Joe McHugh said “To hear of plans for such a significant project at Milltown in the same week that Abbott, one of the biggest employers in the region, announced plans for up to 500 new jobs is huge.“The impact that these projects will have on Donegal will be felt for years to come. They will create big, new opportunities for our young people and families who want to live and work in our county.“We are seeing a new impetus in Donegal Town. I wish those behind the project every success.”Mr McHugh, Government Chief Whip, said: “The redevelopment just a few hundred metres from the Diamond in Donegal Town will enhance the town. “Along with the hundreds of new jobs at Abbott in the coming years, a project like this will bring more and more people in to the area and it will show that Donegal Town is a place to work, to do business, to shop, to socialise and to live and it will be a massive vote of confidence in the region.”€10million retail development proposed for Donegal Town centreSecond jobs boost a ‘vote of confidence’ for South Donegal – Minister McHugh was last modified: July 25th, 2018 by Rachel McLaughlinShare 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:AbbottDonegal TownjobsMinister Joe McHughretaillast_img read more

SA, Europe in Earth observation pact

first_img10 December 2012 The South African National Space Agency and the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre have signed an agreement to collaborate in using remote sensing technologies to monitor the environment to help improve international disaster risk management. According to a statement released by the Joint Research Centre (JRC), the agreement aims to “better exploit remote sensing technologies for monitoring atmospheric, terrestrial and marine environments”. The JRC is the European Commission’s in-house science service and is actively involved in working with national and international partners on crisis management technologies; analysis and application of remote sensing data; natural hazard modelling; information mining and analysis for vulnerability assessments; and civil engineering. The collaboration agreement was signed in Brussels, Belgium last Thursday at a high-level meeting on scientific collaboration to improve disaster anticipation and resilience. The meeting was initiated by commissioner for research, innovation and science, Maire Geoghegan-Quinn, and included senior officials of the European Commission. the World Bank and the United Nations. “Science and technology offer key solutions to improve preparedness and response to natural and man-made disasters, including those related to climatic change,” the JRC said. “The scope of this agreement is to work together on a better understanding of dynamics and evolution of our natural environment through optimal exploitation of Earth observation data and to develop technologies and services which support not only national policies – [such as] agriculture monitoring – but also international issues and policies for disaster risk reduction, early warning and emergency management.” It was also expected that the signing of the agreement would assist in “fostering partnerships to advance international scientific collaboration”, the Commission said. SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Live from Eric Schmidt’s Keynote at Mobile World Congress

first_img6:07 Schmidt mentions this is a Honeycomb app. Uh-oh, networking issues! Can complete the demo, but you can see it on YouTube!6:08 Back to Schmidt. He loves Honeycomb, by the way. Google wants to get you back to being human, not a slave to the computer. (Me: Oh we would love that, too, come to think of it.)6:11 Google Chrome, AdWords, & YouTube get shout outs. 160 million mobile views per year on YouTube. Now Google is monetizing professional content on YouTube.6:13 We understand that we’re disruptive. We understand people have concerns about privacy. We think the debate is healthy and we want to be a part of the discussion. We’re listening.6:15 Over the next few years, all the mobile phones and tablets that are coming mean that you never forget anything: where you stayed, who you talked to, what you said. You’re also never lost. When was the last time you were ever really lost? And all your friends know where you are, too. You’re never lonely – there are always people “around” you. And you’re never bored, never out of ideas. “We can always suggest new ideas.” (Me: You, Google?) And of course, your car drives itself. This technology will come in a decade, not a year.6:20 More people are coming to mobile, billions. It will change their lives. Because of what you helped them build (talking to the operators here, again). He says he hopes Google and you (the carriers) can work together to help make the world a better place with technology. Related Posts 6:24 Question about Ads: What will ads in the future look like? Schmidt says targeted TV-quality ads customized to the unique individual without violating their privacy is the next big thing in advertising. Better ads are more satisfying to viewer and are a better return on investment.Question about Android fragmentation, what’s being done? Schmidt: we hear some of this. We have an anti-fragmentation clause for all our vendors. (Me: Say what?) The importance of the app store – it’s the carrot and stick that encourages updates.6: 27 Question: Google’s role in managing people’s money? Schmidt: Larry said we should offer “Google Bucks.” Probably not going to happen. The serious answer is that there’s a mega opportunity in front of us. The NFC chip such as the one in the Nexus Scan be used as a secure ID for electronic transactions.Scenario: Phone remembers you need new pants. Phone knows there’s 2 stores in front of you selling pants. The phone tells you which one has the pants you like (Schmidt likes the cheaper ones). Phone tells you where to go. Store knows you’re coming. Pants are ready. You buy them, paying with your phone.6:31 Question about the different OS’s Google makes: “I apologize for the confusion.” Confirms that Android Ice Cream will combine the features of Gingerbread and Honeycomb. He doesn’t confirm it’s called “Ice Cream,” just that it starts with an “I” and is named after a dessert. Chrome OS is unrelated to mobile phones. Chrome OS is for netbooks and PCs. Over time, we’re working on merging them, he said.6:33 Question: Why isn’t Larry here? Larry said: you get to fly around more. Larry is probably at his desk, working on products.6:34 Question about HTML5. It will become the way almost all apps are built. The underlying standard had to evolve. Eventually, some number of years from now, a lot of apps will run on HTML5, on both mobile and non-mobile form factors.6:35 Question about Google’s vision for social, how will it bring intelligence to social info: Google is a platform. If you give us your social info, we can make search better. Ex: if you tell YouTube who your friends are, it can suggest better videos for you. It’s another signal we add to the matrix.Question about IPv4: The last block of addresses will be gone in the next 6 months. Google has been testing IPv6, as all major vendors do. The concern is about the intermediate things – the things you forgot about. We have do a number of tests to make sure IPv6 routing works. The time is now, we have to deal with it.6:39 Question about how Schmidt sees Google in 10 years? Google will be a lot bigger. The world will be more mobile. The big development will be artificial intelligence. The infrastructure will be built but we can’t predict the next killer apps.6:41 Question on mobile devices and health: It’s obvious that mobile devices should be used in health. Between 3-4 Google queries are medical, we’re working to make those results accurate, more automated. Ex: “You’re having a heart attack! Go the hospital now!”Question about primary competitors: Schmidt says its primary competitor is Microsoft. They have the cash, scale, brand and reach. Bing is good – perhaps too good, as we mentioned in a recent blog post. Facebook is less of a competitor.On Nokia/Microsoft deal: We wished Nokia had chosen Android. We certainly tried. We’re sorry that they chose Microsoft.6:44 Oops, I dropped my camera. I missed this question.6:47 Why don’t educational institutions embrace Google searches, Internet research? Schmidt: We’ve funded YouTube professors. We haven’t come up with a killer “Ed” app. The sooner we can get people on mobile, the faster change can occur.6:48 Android has been a success, are you moving to PC world? (Me: Uh, seriously?) Schmidt: Yes, and it’s called Chrome OS. Sometime in spring, hardware manufacturers will deliver Chrome OS PCs. They won’t run Microsoft apps.6:50 Question about privacy dilemma? People trust brands that are trustworthy. People will opt-in if they know you’re not trying to violate their privacy. Privacy is complicated, there’s not a single answer. Sometimes national security, local laws, local customs come into play. As long as you choose to opt-in, not an issue.That was the last question, we’re wrapped. Tags:#Android#mobile#news sarah perez Google Executive Chairman Eric Schmidt is giving a keynote presentation at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. It’s his first major speech since he stepped down from the CEO position in January. His goal? To talk Android, of course, and more importantly, to convince carriers that Google isn’t trying to make them just “dumb pipes” for Google’s content.Update: At least, that’s been his usual MO at these events. This time, a healthy Q&A session at the end gave a much larger focus on Google as a company, both on mobile and off.UPDATE: Live blog has ended. 5:49: 300,000 Schmidt starts with stats: Android activations per day. He’s talking about the power of broadband, the power of connectivity.5:52: Technology is going to serve humans, not the other way around. And “computers are here to make us happier.”5:53: Today’s developers think mobile first. Last year, Schmidt said he predicated smartphones would pass PC sales in 2 years. Now, he says he was wrong. It happened in one year. A smartphone today has the same capability of a lunar mission in 1969. The same thing has occurred on the networks – the operators are pouring billions of dollars to offer data at this scale.5:55: Note, he’s not calling the operators “carriers” like he does in the U.S. Carrier implies dumb pipe, operator sounds better.5:59 Schmidt is revisiting the idea of mobile phones as “serendipity” platforms that help you discover the world around you, a favorite topic of his. Some magical things phones do come from Google: Google Translate for instance, is a universal translator. Translation is done in the cloud.6:01 Demo Time! We’re looking at a new Android app: Android Movie Studio which lets you edit video files. The app lets you add pan and zoom effects, customize the images in the timeline, change the beginning and end of clips, change the colors in clips.center_img Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technologylast_img read more