Liberia Signs Madiba’s Book of Condolence

first_imgLiberian government officials on the morning of Tuesday, December 10, arrived in numbers to sign the Book of Condolence for fallen Africa and South Africa’s icon, Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.Mr. Mandela, who also goes by his clan name, Madiba, departed this world on Tuesday, December 5, 2013, at around 20:50 GMT, South African President Mr. Jacob Zuma announced to the world. Madiba was 95.The Liberian officials, including the Speaker and members of the National Legislature, and members of the Cabinet, were led to the signing ceremony by Vice President Joseph Nyumah Boakai.A few minutes after VP Boakai signed the Book, he told newsmen and women that Madiba’s loss “is a great loss not only for Africa but for the world at-large.”In spite of this loss, however, he said “it was also a celebration for the world,” in view of the extraordinary life and lifestyle Mandela led. “No one else in his country or anywhere in the world can easily be compared to him,” the Vice President said.As they signed the Book of Condolence, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf joined other world leaders attending the South African Government’s Memorial Service at the First National Bank (FNB) Stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa.According to VP Boakai, the message President Sirleaf took to the people of South Africa was that Liberia is blessed to have had early contacts with this “…renowned person. We were fortunate to have interacted with him and the country. So all of us are celebrating his life and thanking God for making him available to us.”The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rep. Alex Tyler, the Acting Chair of the Cabinet and Finance Minister, Mr. Amara Konneh, Foreign Minister and Dean of the Cabinet, Mr. Augustine K. Ngafuan, Defense Minister Brownie Samukai and the Ministers of  Education, Health and Social Welfare and Post and Telecommunications, among others, formed part of the Vice President’s delegation.US Ambassador Deborah Malac and United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Resident Representative, Ms. Ratidzai Ndhlovu were also there to sign the Book.Speaker Alex Tyler declared that Liberians need to learn from Mr. Mandela’s example of being a reconciler.“On our way to becoming leaders today, some of us offended some people or someone offended us; but in taking our positions, we need to bring everyone on board and reconcile our differences,” he suggested.The mood in the hall was somber as South Africa’s Ambassador greeted the officials of the Liberian Government who had queued to sign the book of condolence.The South African envoy to Liberia, Ambassador Masilo E. Mabeta, told journalists that his country has received a lot of messages of condolence—meaning that what Madiba lived for is understood and embraced, and is going to be continued by the people of Liberia.Ambassador Mabeta added that the world is going to miss Mandela but it is going to have him through his ideas, what he stood for and it will come to embrace his values for everyone, irrespective of race or creed.  Nelson Mandela spent time in Liberia during the days of the liberation struggle in South Africa, even carrying a Liberian passport.Liberia’s contribution to the liberation struggle around Africa cannot be over-emphasized and is well-noted in history.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

I-League Clubs Provide Better Platform to Help Develop Grassroot Football: TRAU FC Sponsor

first_imgNew Delhi: The recently promoted I-League outfit TRAU FC has surprised all by managing to get a sponsor as Aciesta Sports Alliance — a Kolkata based sports management & development firm — has come forward to become their title sponsor. At a time when even the top clubs have failed to get sponsors, this comes as a pleasant surprise.Speaking to IANS, Arijit Mukherjee — Managing Director of Aciesta Sports Alliance — said that the reason behind them sponsoring the club is that I-League teams are better investment opportunity as one can work with grassroot level talents. “I-League club are better investment opportunity or you can say a better platform to take up grassroot level talents or youths. New players coming in may later on go on to ISL, you can see the trends for the last five six years, that’s how it has happened. The players are being produced by I-League clubs. So for me, this was always the right platform. That’s the reason that we thought of starting with I-League,” he said.While, Mukherjee did not rule out the possibility of associating with bigger clubs like Mohun Bagan or East Bengal in future, he feels that at the moment being a budding company, it’s better to go with a new club rather than a big name.”There are various reasons when we look to invest into any entity, there are lots of thing we looked into. First of all we are a budding company, we are a sports management firm, we are looking to develop grassroot football and take it to a different level, making sure that the kids go and play. TRAU is also a new club which has just come up (in the I-League). So this matches our philosophy because we are also a new company and we are coming on to board with a new entrant,” he explained.”Clubs like Mohun Bagan or East Bengal, may be, would be the next step. I am not counting that out but there are lots of things which are involved here. The space to work, the ideas which we can inculcate into a club which has just come up. May be show to the Indian football industry, may be we try to enhance the Indian football industry through merchandising, through pan-engagement.”There are lots of things which we can work on. We just get that bit of independence when we do it here (with a new club). So, that is one of the biggest reasons, because the budget is much higher for a club like Mohun Bagan or East Bengal. Secondly, we get a chance to experiment, when we are into the first year, we can have a trial and error run, which makes it much more easier for us to invest in a club which just come up.”He also did not rule out the possibility of joining the ISL as a sponsor.”If we have an idea and see that TRAU is building up to the vision we have and our visions are matching may be we will try to invest into TRAU and take it to the ISL by 2022-23 season. By that time ISL will have a promotional system in place as per the roadmap of the AFC.”There are lot of opportunities, I will not close down any opportunity. We are a budding company and we are looking to go in a very articulate manner. We have lot of options and we will keep all options open,” he pointed out. Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow News18.com on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. footballI-League 2019-20indian footballTRAU FC First Published: November 18, 2019, 4:10 PM ISTlast_img read more

State leaders look to fix Alaskan health issues

first_imgDownload AudioMedicaid is one of the biggest drivers of Alaska’s state spending.At the same time, Alaska has the nation’s highest suicide rate, and a growing problem with opioid addiction.There is a new effort to address both issues. State leaders believe they can lower the long term growth in Medicaid costs – and make Alaskans healthier mentally and physically.They plan to do that by better coordinating behavioral health care – the treatment of mental health and addiction.At a recent Senate Medicaid Reform Subcommittee hearing, Health Commissioner Valerie Davidson said it will be a challenge.“This is hard stuff,” Davidson said. “If it was easy, Alaska would have done it long ago. And the great news is we have folks who have come together who are really interested in really changing the way that we deliver behavioral health services in our state, so that Alaskans can get the care that they need.”In practice, it means more Alaskans will be screened for behavioral health issues in primary care settings. And a wider range of licensed counselors and therapists would be able to treat Medicaid recipients in a wider range of settings, like in a doctor’s office.Davidson says current gaps in behavioral health care lead to other problems.“We are seeing it in the number of children who experience in child maltreatment,” said Davidson. “And unfortunately, when we’re dealing with children, what we know is to the extent that that occurs, that can become a multigenerational issue, that if we don’t provide resources to family members who are in crisis where we have places where they can actually go to receive help, we are never going to get ahead of this problem.”A recent state-commissioned report recommended the state hire an organization that would increase the state’s capacity to provide behavioral health care, and manage a coordinated system.While that organization would cost more than five million dollars per year starting in 2018, the state projects that it would save a larger amount in future years.Despite the state’s massive budget deficit, Anchorage Republican Senator Cathy Giessel was on board.“I appreciate the encouragement to invest in behavioral health and frankly I view it in the same way as investing in oil and gas credits for exploration,” Geissel said. “It pays off in the long run, though it costs a bit upfront.”This coordinated approach is already practiced in some areas.For example, Southcentral Foundation serves Alaska Natives with psychologists and social workers who treat patients in the same health centers as primary care providers.The Alaska Mental Health Trust Authority board supports better integration of behavioral health care into the rest of the healthcare system.Chief Executive Jeff Jessee says state leaders and providers will have to work together like a baseball team.“The trustees believe this is the single biggest thing that the trust will encounter in our 20 years of history, this is an opportunity to truly transform our behavioral health and healthcare system,” said Jessee. “So, it’s the bottom of the ninth, we’re five runs down, we’re not bunting, and we’re not going to get one big swing either. We’re going to have to chunk away at this.”While the groundwork for statewide behavioral health changes would happen over  the next year under Governor Bill Walker’s proposed budget, the bulk of the changes wouldn’t occur until 2018.last_img read more