Immediate action needed to stem the flow of blood of women

first_imgDear EditorI am horrified at the extremely high incidence of murder of Guyanese women at the hands of their husbands or intimate partners. Over the past two months, twelve domestic homicides have been reported by the local media. Editor, we are in a public health crisis, and we need immediate action to stem the flow of blood of women in our dear land. Even though men are victims of intimate partner violence (IPV), the World Health Organization’s (2012) statistics attribute that global victims of IPV are overwhelmingly women, with estimates as high as 95%.IPV is an insidious and deadly problem in Guyana, as it is internationally. IPV is not limited to physical abuse, but incorporates any behaviour that harms, threatens, or has a negative impact or effect on the victim. Such behaviours may include stalking, destroying someone’s property, psychological aggression, threatening to or actually injuring their pet or loved one.Editor, it is not unusual to hear IPV trivialised as a private matter, and ‘the two persons should go home and make up’. This response may potentially discourage victims from making a Police report or seeking sensitive and non-judgmental intervention. In addition, systemic and cultural norms oftentimes allow for victim blaming, shaming and disbelief.Studies have shown that IPV is generally associated with a wide range of physical and mental consequences that are potentially life-altering. For these twelve women, it has resulted in death; and for many more, they suffer disabilities, reproductive health issues, and other serious physical injuries.Additionally, victims of IPV may experience a range of emotional issues, including post-traumatic stress disorder, sleep disorders, and depression.My heart hurts for our children, the future of our country, who are oftentimes collateral damage from IPV they witness in the home. The violence in the home engenders a wide range of negative, distressing, and overwhelming emotions for young children, which may follow them into adulthood.It is time that we take comprehensive and informed actions to reduce and prevent the incidents of intimate partner violence in Guyana. As a Guyanese who has received extensive domestic violence prevention training and education, and has been advocating and working for several years with victims of domestic and sexual violence and sex trafficking, I have the following suggestions:• There is need for a coordinated community response. If there is not already a task force in place, one should be formed and members receive comprehensive training in domestic violence prevention and intervention. Members of the task force should include responders, service providers, community leaders, and faith leaders.• Guyana has a domestic violence law which should be reviewed, and a concerted effort made to implement and enforce these laws. The Police should receive training on the provisions of the domestic violence law, and it should become standard practice to effect an arrest if there is probable cause. This sends a message and reinforces that domestic violence is a crime and will not be tolerated in our community.• It is not unusual for victims to refuse to file criminal charges against their abusers, or ask that those charges be dropped. However, victims could be provided with other remedies, such as a protection order. It is necessary to set up domestic violence courts presided over by a dedicated magistrate who is trained to work with victims and perpetrators of domestic violence. All the staff of this court should also receive domestic violence sensitivity training.• A batterer’s intervention programme should be created to provide services for men and women who abuse. All men who are charged or have an order of protection against them should be mandated to attend a batterer’s intervention programme• October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month. An education campaign that focuses on modelling and highlighting healthy relationships would be of immense benefit.My fellow Guyanese, it is already too late, but we must still act. We must break this deafening silence and stem the flow of blood that results from domestic homicide. Our children, our families, our communities, our country cannot afford this senseless loss of women’s lives.Sincerely,Carlotta Walcott, MAConcerned citizenlast_img read more

Read More →

Police speeding down road is violation of public safety

first_imgDear Editor,I wish to bring to your attention a number of serious issues that are currently plaguing our Guyanese society.There seems to be an increase in the number of road accidents and armed robberies on a daily basis in Guyana. Only yesterday morning (October 15, 2019), the residents of Friendship, East Bank Demerara were traumatised when they were called to render assistance to persons who were the victims of a fatal accident, which had occurred on the public road.According to reports, the driver of the Police vehicle is a Presidential Guard. The Ministry of the Presidency has since released a statement to the media refuting claims that the driver was a part of the President’s escort.The question that looms large is: Which section of society are members of the Presidential Guard Service assigned to serve, is it the President and members of the Cabinet or the civilians?President David Granger has since said that a Commission of Inquiry will be launched into the horrific accident. The public is expecting the expeditious release of the findings of this Inquiry.Public trust in this administration and the Guyana Police Force is already at an all-time low and to reclaim this confidence we wish to find out whether there are clear restrictive policies for high-speed Police escorts, and under what circumstances speeding by the Police is justifiable.In this modern era, there must be a speed limit for members of the Police Force; in fact, they must be upholders of the traffic laws like any motorist using the country’s roadways. There will be times when Police officers have to drive beyond the prescribed speed limit but they must do so within the range of safety, not only for themselves but for members of the Public who are using those very roads.I demand that a mechanism be designed to ensure that speeding by Police Officers on the roads is justified. Measures must also be put in place to ensure that Police officers who are in breach of a restrictive policy for speeding are held accountable. Speeding cops can cause serious injury, death and damage to property.The Administration of the Guyana Police Force should consider outfitting all of its vehicles with ‘speed governors’ which will prevent the engines from exceeding a certain speed.The use of GPS in Police cars to monitor and discipline officers for speeding and other traffic infractions should also be considered as a measure for implementation.The Police, speeding down the road, is a blatant violation of public trust and public safety and I hope that the loss of those five lives would not be in vain but that we would come to realise that the earlier appropriate measures are implemented, the safer we all will be.Finally, I wish to state quite categorically that I have confidence in the men and women of the Guyana Police Force whom I know work way beyond their call of duty and whom like all Guyanese are the recipient of failed promises by the APNU/AFC coalition, which is now a caretaker government.Yours sincerely,Africo SelmanMember ofParliamentGrade Six TeacherandGrade SixSupervisor,Success ElementarySchoollast_img read more

Read More →

Greenville Flood Water Rages, Destroys Streets

first_imgEach day of the week, when there it rains heavily in the port city of Greenville, residents and businesspeople encounter the menace of flooding.Many drainages are clogged with garbage having been thrown on the various streets by residents and other business entities.According to some of the Greenville residents and businesspeople, the situation has become a menace that continues to send out offensive odors, to the detriment of the residents.Many of the streets observed by reporter were littered with huge volumes of garbage that have been thrown there and not cleared for the past three weeks by staff of the Greenville City Corporation (GCC) in Sinoe County.It may be recalled that last week’s all night rainfall kept hundreds of residents indoor for long periods and their business centers were surrounded by both animal and human feces from the clogged drainages in Greenville City.   As a result of the extensive downpour rains last week, Liberia National Red Cross Society, Sinoe County branch,  handed out some drainage tools to open of the biggest drainages in Greenville City, Sinoe County.Several citizens and residents told the Daily Observer last week said that they want the clogged drainages to be given top priority in terms of rehabilitation and reconstruction in Greenville City.Business owners, especially foreign business entities, have also underscored the urgent need for the rehabilitation of the clogged and age-old drainages in Greenville City, Sinoe County.They also expressed outrage over the slow pace of rehabilitation works on the clogged drainages and other critical spots that continue to pose serious threats to lives and moving objects in Greenville City, Sinoe County.The Greenville City’s business owners also explained that most of the water flowing through some of half- rehabilitated drainages contained human and animal feces that pose health and environmental hazards.The Greenville’s businessmen and women also expressed grave concern over the deplorable conditions of the clogged drainages and called on the GCC’s Sanitation and Environmental Department to take swift steps to remedy the situation.“We are indeed being exposed to lots of health, sanitation and environmental hazards that call for the urgent attention of the GCC’s Sanitation and Environmental staff and employees in Greenville City,” auto-spare-parts dealer Davidson Tugbeh stressed.“Our city Greenville, founded 1838 by the pioneers of Liberia, should be given an extensive attention by the central administration of Sinoe County in order to restore its prewar dignity, Mr. Tugbeh emphasized.“Sadly, the flood water is  slowly and systematically destroying and damaging our concrete streets in Greenville City,” Mr. Tugbeh concluded.For her part, used clothes dealer Madam Patricia Nimely told the Daily Observer that at the front of her business entity, the sanitation crisis has reached its highest peak with hundreds of flies invading her provision shop in Greenville City.“I’m out for more hardship and suffering from now to the end of October as the rains continue to destroy my goods and hamper my children’s progress in Greenville City,” Madam Nimely lamented.In a brief statement, a Greenville’s pineapple and orange wholesale dealer,  Madam Susan Randolph Kun,  pointed out that the flooding in the city in recent times was worrisome and needs  immediate intervention of the GCC’s staff and employees.She added the extensive flooding has affected the sale  of pineapple and oranges to her regular customers and the general public in Greenville.Meanwhile, as the rains intensify at the port city of Greenville, business entities’ owners and residents have sounded an urgent SOS appeal to all well meaning Liberians and non-governmental organizations to help clean the clogged drainages.When contacted for comments on residents and business people’s claims, GCC’s staff and employees told the Daily Observer that lack of critical sanitation equipment has impeded the cleaning of the clogged drainages in Greenville City.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Read More →

Bartica trio charged for engine theft

first_imgThree men of Bartica, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) charged for stealing a boat engine and other items on Monday made an appearance at the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts.Mark Brian Griffith, 25, of Lot 97 Seventh Avenue, Bartica; Dwayne Washington, 27 and Colin Speed, 24, both of Lot 22 Fifth Avenue, Bartica appeared before the Chief Magistrate, Ann McLennan.Griffith denied the allegation; however, Washington and Speed admitted to stealing the Chinese engine along with blocks and other items with a total value of $207,000.According to Police Prosecutor Gordon Mansfield, the items were left by the Virtual Complainant (VC), Barry Ramcharan, at a friend’s home, but, upon his return, he found the items missing.The matter was investigated, and the trio were arrested. Washington and Speed admitted that they were unknowingly involved.According to Washington, he was just a taxi driver hired on the day of the incident while Speed told the Court that he was asked by Griffith to assist him with lifting the engine for transport. He, however, noted that he was unaware of the other items mentioned in the charge.Washington and Speed were fined $75,000 each. However, Griffith was placed on bail in the sum of $75,000.He also had a second charge read against him which stated that between April 22, 2018 and May 1, 2018, at Bibarabo, Essequibo, he stole a 175-horsepower Yamaha engine foot valued half of a million dollars from Brian Bradford.He denied the allegation and was granted bail in the sum of $20,000 on that charge.He is expected to make his second court appearance on May 27, 2018 at the Bartica Magistrate’s Court.last_img read more

Read More →

Can you help us bring Frankie home?

first_imgFrankie the white shih-tzu went missing yesterday in the Ardsbeg, Derryconner area, near Gortahork. He was last seen around 5:30pm, and his owner Emer is eager to get him home safe.If you have seen Frankie please contact Emer on Facebook or call 0851186635. Can you help us bring Frankie home? was last modified: July 26th, 2016 by Elaine McCalligShare 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:frankiegortahorkMISSING DOGshih tzulast_img read more

Read More →

WHAT A SEASON FOR MILFORD AS MEN AND LADIES TEAMS CROWNED COUNTY CHAMPIONS

first_imgJunior Championship Success!To kick off a great 7 days for the Club the Senior team won the Club’s 4th ever Junior Championship after a thrilling finale in O’Donnell Park in Letterkenny last weekend. A point down with just four minutes remaining looked like lights out for Na Galloglaigh before a quickfire 4 points sealed victory over Urris by a scoreline of 2-9 to 2-6. Na Galloglaigh were 6 points up and looked to be cruising at half time before a superb fightback from Urris saw them go 1 point up going into the final minutes.This team showed its character however and the hard work and dedication shown all year was evident as they never gave up to ultimately secure the Championship that few can say they didn’t deserve.Ulster Junior Club ChampionshipThere is some confusion as to who the Senior team will play in the next round of the Ulster Junior Club Championship. Originally the Donegal Champions were due to play the Fermanagh Champions in Brewster Park, Fermanagh on the 3rd November.However Fermanagh do not have a Junior Championship and therefore the club could have a bye to the Ulster Semi Final which is scheduled to take place on the 17th November. More details as and when we get themSeniorsThe Seniors will look to bounce back from their 0-9 to 2-5 defeat at the hands of Burt last Saturday when they take on Naomh Ultan at home.As the promotion race hots up as we near the home stretch it is vital that boys keep picking up wins to maintain their position at the top of the table. Your support can help achieve this, hope to see plenty of you at Moyle Park this Saturday at 6.45pm. Reserve throw in is at 5.30pmLadies Win Intermediate Championship!The Ladies maintained their 100% record in finals on Sunday past as they defeated Aodh Ruadh by 3-9 to 4-4.In a game similar to the Senior men’s the week before the Ladies were well in control at half time leading 2-5 to 1-3 before a sinbin for a Milford player allowed Aodh Ruadh back into the game. However the Ladies were able to hold out and secure the Championship with a two point win.This is a magnificent progression for Marty Barrett’s, Ger Hardiman’s and Louis Gallagher’s team as only last year they won the Junior Championship, and after Sundays success will now compete in the Senior Championship.Ladies Ulster Intermediate Club ChampionshipThe Ladies are scheduled to play at home to Mayobridge, the Down Intermediate Champions, on Sunday the 6th of October.Should they win this clash they will play the winners of Tyrone and Cavan in the Semi Final.Needless to say this is a huge game for the club and with the game scheduled to be at home it is hoped that we get as much support as possible down to get behind the team.SeniorsCLG BnaG 0-9 Burt 2-5CLG BnaG seemed to still be suffering from a championship victory hangover judging by their first half display on Saturday, but in fairness the team was bereft of 7 of the championship winning team.The first half, that was deemed unacceptable by manager Nigel Black, saw Na Galloglaigh concede two penalties in just two minutes.The first may have been dubious as to whether it was in or outside the box but there was certainly no doubt about the second as keeper Sean Gallagher had no option but to haul the on rushing Burt forward to the ground.A virtual no show by the blues in the first 30 minutes left the score line 2-4 to 0-3 to the away team.The second half however was a completely different story as Na Galloglaigh pitched a superb fight back and indeed were unlucky to not to actually win the game.A spirited performance saw them restrict Burt to only one point in the second half, and that didn’t come until the 31st minute.Na Galloglaigh showed magnificent character to grind Burt down to go one point behind as the game entered injury time.If the first penalty decision by the referee was contentious there was certainly no doubt that Na Galloglaigh should have had their own penalty deep into injury time.After Burt scored in the 31st minute to go 2 points clear Pauric Curley won a 13m free wide of goals.That free was taken short by Curley to Cathal McGettigan and his low goal bound shot was cleared by an obvious Burt foot block but referee Kieran McShea ignored Milford pleas for a penalty and instead blew his final whistle.In the end though Na Galloglaigh can’t complain as overall Burt probably deserved the victory in a close encounter.The blues have now lost their 100% league record but remain top of Division 4.Nigel Black praised a great second half team performance and especially the displays of Tony McNamee, Paddy Peoples, and Cathal McGettigan.Team: Sean Gallagher, Anthony McPaul, Barry McNulty, Sean Black, Enda McHugh, TJ Evesson, Manus Boyce, Lorcan Friel, James Doyle, Dean Burgess (0-1), Pauric Curley (0-1), Kevin McGee, David Curley (0-1), Cathal McGettigan (0-5), Paddy Peoples. Subs: Tony McNamee (0-1) for McNulty (20m), Paul Sweeney for McGee (22m), Paul Grier for Sweeney (52m), Jamie Heena, Ryan FerrySenior LadiesAfter their great Intermediate Championship success last weekend the Ladies are back in league action this weekend when they take on Convoy in a huge top of the table clash.The game will be played in Convoy this Sunday at 11am and all support would be greatly appreciated.NewsletterFor all your weekly, news, fixtures, results and match reports as well as much more such as player profiles, photo albums and more please subscribe to our newsletter by texting your name and email address to 086-3400082, emailing milforddonegalgaa@gmail.com, or by contacting the clubs Twitter or Facebook pagesVolunteers Needed for Sub-CommitteesCLG BnaG is currently in the process of creating Sub-Committees to help implement and achieve the targets of a 5 year plan.If you feel you can contribute to the running of the Club in any small way, either in time or in ideas, please contact MilfordDonegalGAA@gmail.com, 0863400082 or send a PM. The Sub-Committees are as follows:FinanceUnderage Games DevelopmentAdult Games DevelopmentClub AdministrationClub FacilitiesPR, Communication & CultureU21sThe U21s were defeated in their U21A Championship clash at home to Four Masters last week by a scoreline of 2-7 to 4-16, however the 15 points difference on the scoreboard reflects harshly on Na Galloglaigh.Missing several key players they went in at half time 1-10 to 1-6 down when they really should have been ahead after missing several scorable opportunities.Midway through the second half they conceded 2 goals in as many minutes to kill the game off as a contest.A lot of this team, and several of the key players that were missing, are still underage next year and it is hoped that the side can progress further in the 2014 ChampionshipMinor LadiesWell done to the Minor Ladies who produced an excellent performance away to Naomh Mhuire last Tuesday, winning 8-11 to 2-3.This is a very talented bunch of girls who we have high hopes for.Next up for the Minor Ladies is an away trip to near neighbours Fanad Gaels on Tuesday 10th September, all support would be greatly appreciated.U14 GirlsThe U14 Girls are home to Buncrana this week however a throw in time and date have yet to be decided.U13sU13 Training will begin taking place every Friday from 6-7.30pm at the pitch. All players are asked to attend and to bring their water bottle and gum shieldU8s & U10s TrainingThe U8 & U10 trainings will resume this Friday the 6th of September at the pitch in Milford at 6pm. The Parish League will begin the following Friday, 13th September.Gaelic For MothersGaelic for Mothers training will continue every Wednesday at 8pm at the pitch in Milford. All interested are very welcome.Lotto Sellers RequiredThe Club is seeking lotto sellers in the Milford, Ramelton and Rathmullan areas. If you are interested contact Joe McNulty on 086-8547114LottoThis weeks lotto numbers were 2-14-17-23. No jackpot winner, 2 match 3 winners win €35 each. Michael Patterson, Ramelton, & Mark Farren, Magheradrumman, Ramelton. Next weeks Jackpot is €1,160.Evolution FitnessAll paid up club members will now be able to avail of a €10 discount on 3 month membership.Normal 3 month membership is €80 but will be available to members for €70. If interested contact Jack Duddy at Evolution Fitness beside the mart in MilfordContact UsFor all information and queries contact MilfordDonegalGAA@Gmail.com, follow us on Twitter on @CLGBnaG, and on Facebook on www.facebook.com/clgbaile.nangalloglach or see our website www.milford.donegal.gaa.ie/TrainingSeniors: Tues & Thurs at 7pmLadies: Wed (6.30pm) & Sat (10am)Gaelic for Mothers: Wed at 8pmU8s: Fri at 6pmMilford GAA Club GearClub gear is now available to order. Anyone who has ordered club gear but yet received it are to contact either Aidan or Barry.The range of club gear includes Hoodies, Tracksuits tops, Windcheaters, hats, navy polo shirts, white polo shirts, and t-shirts.There is some lovely gear available at very reasonable prices and photos are available to view on the club Facebook page.Orders can be placed with either Barry on 086-3400082 or Aidan on 087-1223177.WHAT A SEASON FOR MILFORD AS MEN AND LADIES TEAMS CROWNED COUNTY CHAMPIONS was last modified: September 3rd, 2013 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:ChampionsGAAIntermediateJuniorLadiesMen’sMilfordNoticesSportsuccesslast_img read more

Read More →

Offense finally getting untracked

first_imgSAN DIEGO — Those early losses to Dallas and Denver now appear to have been hiccups for the San Diego Chargers. After routing the two-time defending Super Bowl champion New England Patriots 41-17 at Foxborough on Sunday, the Chargers are the highest-scoring team in the AFC. If they can get past the Pittsburgh Steelers at home on Monday night, it might be time for them to be considered among the NFL’s elite. “It’s hard to base the season off two games, but if we continue to win like we have been winning, then I think it’s something that we can look forward to,” linebacker Donnie Edwards said Monday. “But, we take them as they come.” Sunday’s victory, which ended New England’s 21-game home winning streak, opened a month that likely will define the Chargers’ season. In a span of four games, the defending AFC West champions will play three of the four teams that played in last year’s conference championship games. They play at Philadelphia on Oct. 23. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 And while it’s true the Chargers (2-2) are a .500 club, their efficiency in beating the Patriots and the New York Giants has been eye-opening, compared to the way they played the first two games. First, though, the Chargers don’t feel the need to apologize for beating a beat-up Patriots team. “They were 21-0 over there at home, and you look up at the stadium and they’ve got those three banners up there, World Champions.’ That commands respect,” Edwards said. “Regardless of injuries, you’ve got to go in there and win the game. So we focus on us getting the job done, not what they had to take care of.” Edwards’ interception of third-string quarterback Matt Cassel led to the Chargers’ final score. He lateraled to Clinton Hart, who ran 40 yards for a TD with 34 seconds left. “We came up with a big victory, so that’s all that matters to me,” Edwards said. “As long as we won the game, I don’t care who gets respect. We won.” center_img Including a 45-23 rout of Eli Manning and the Giants a week earlier, the Chargers have scored 86 points in two games and lead the AFC with 127 points. That’s second in the NFL to the Giants’ 136. And it’s almost like offensive coordinator Cam Cameron suddenly remembered he’s got the NFL’s highest-paid running back on his roster. After LaDainian Tomlinson gained just 124 yards combined in the first two games, he ran for 192 yards against the Giants and 134 at New England. He’s rushed for five touchdowns in the last two games, and also threw a touchdown pass against New York. Tomlinson has scored an NFL-high eight touchdowns. With 450 yards rushing, he trails only Seattle’s Shaun Alexander, who has 455. Drew Brees threw for 248 yards and two touchdowns against the Patriots after throwing for 191 yards and two scores against the Giants. He hasn’t been intercepted or sacked in two games. Brees threw to eight different players Sunday, including six passes for 108 yards to tight end Antonio Gates. The Chargers probably would be 3-1 if general manager A.J. Smith hadn’t suspended Gates for the last two exhibition games and the opener against Dallas for missing a team-imposed deadline for ending his training camp holdout. The Chargers lost to Dallas, 28-24, despite have a first-and-goal from the Cowboys’ 7 in the closing minutes. Brees doesn’t care if the Chargers are considered an elite team. “We’re probably just flying under the radar, just going out and taking care of our business,” he said. “And all that stuff takes care of itself when the time comes. We’re a team that if we keep going at the rate we’re going, yes, we’ll reach that level. But it just continues to take work and work and work, and we’re not there yet.” Tomlinson doesn’t care, either. “I’m pretty sure if you keep winning and playing well, people start to notice, and that’s part of it,” he said. “But we don’t really have to have people notice us. We live to try to put a Super Bowl ring on our finger. That’s the motivation.” By Monday, Tomlinson was tired of talking about the win over the Patriots. “My focus now is Pittsburgh. I don’t want to keep thinking about the New England Patriots, and us beating them. We beat New York last week, and now we’ve got Pittsburgh this week. You know what? Now people are saying the Indianapolis Colts are the best team in the NFL. So, I mean, so it’s like, Forget about the Patriots, it’s all about the Colts, baby,”‘ Tomlinson said with a laugh. The Chargers visit the Colts on Dec. 18. 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

Read More →

Home-buyers, job-seekers benefit

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake Meanwhile, a Labor Department report showed that new applications filed for unemployment insurance last week edged up to 322,000 – a level that is still consistent with a labor market revival, economists said. That report provided further evidence that the jobs market is back on its feet after being knocked around by Gulf Coast hurricanes. In the middle of September, new applications for jobless benefits surged above the 400,000 mark. Since then, they have slowly drifted downward and now are back at pre-hurricane levels. In fact, the 322,000 level of claims registered last week was slightly better than the 324,000 seen for the corresponding week a year ago. Hiring – which was hampered by the Gulf Coast hurricanes in September and October – rebounded in November as employers boosted payrolls by 215,000. Analysts predict that an additional 200,000 jobs were added in December, and that the unemployment rate will either hold steady at 5 percent or move down a notch to 4.9 percent. The employment report for December will be released next week. WASHINGTON – A cooling housing market may put buyers in the driver’s seat while an improving job market could give workers and job-seekers more leverage, economists say. Either way, analysts read a pair of economic reports Thursday as indicating a soft landing for the high-flying housing sector and a smoother ride for the labor market. Sales of previously owned homes fell for the second month in a row, declining a moderate 1.7 percent in November to an annual rate of 6.97 million units, the lowest since March, the National Association of Realtors reported. “As more listings of homes come on the market during this period of modestly declining sales, more home-buyers will find themselves in a better position to negotiate,” said the association’s president, Thomas Stevens. “I think the tide is turning in favor of the employee or job-seeker versus the company,” said Rich Yamarone, economist at Argus Research. On the housing front, even with the drop in existing-home sales in November, the market remains in generally healthy shape and is on track to set record-high home sales for the fifth year in a row for all of 2005. Moderately rising mortgage rates are allowing the housing market so far to cool slowly, easing fears about a crash, economists said. The average rate on 30-year mortgages in November was 6.33 percent, up from 6.07 percent in October. This week, however, rates on 30-year mortgages dipped to 6.22 percent, Freddie Mac reported Thursday. Other housing barometers – including a drop in new-home sales in November – also have flashed signs that the market has peaked and is now slowing. The slowing in housing comes as the Federal Reserve has been boosting short-term interest rates for nearly two years. The Fed earlier this month lifted a key rate to its highest level in 4 years to keep the economy and inflation on an even keel. Another rate increase is expected on Jan. 31. 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

Read More →

Good draw for SA wheelchair stars

first_img23 April 2014 South African players received a favorable draw when the official draw procedures for the Airports Company South Africa Gauteng Open were concluded on Tuesday at the Gauteng East Tennis Complex in Benoni. Stephane Houdet of France tops the men’s seeds and is scheduled to meet arch rival Gordon Reid of Great Britain in the final. Houdet will open his challenge against Similo Basi of South Africa, while Reid plays another local, Frank Ramokoatsi. With South Africa’s top men’s player Evans Maripa having withdrawn from the tournament due to the sudden death of his mother, South African hopes in the men’s singles will rest on Leon Els and Patrick Selepe, while another 13 players have also made it into the 32-strong draw.Women’s draw South Africa’s top woman KG Montjane has been seeded second for the event and if all goes according to plan will meet top seed Sabine Ellerbrock of Germany in the final. However, before Montjane can claim her spot in the title decider on Saturday, she has a possible semi-final clash with third seed Lucy Shuker of Great Britain, who is ranked eighth in the world, one place behind Montjane. The South African star, who is the defending champion, said in a statement that the next two weeks were very important. ‘A bag full of points to defend’ “I won this tournament last year, so I have a bag full of points to defend. I feel prepared and ready for the week and I am confident of doing myself and my country proud,” she reckoned. Second seed Lucas Sithole will play compatriot Steven Kekae in the first round of the quads draw. Sithole is set to meet fourth seed Sarah Hunter of Great Britain in the semi-finals. Top seed in the quads and world number one, David Wagner of the USA, meets Swede Petter Edstrom in round one.Blockbuster Should Wagner and Sithole make the final, it promises to be a blockbuster. Sithole beat Wagner to capture his first Grand Slam title at the US Open late last year, but Wagner subsequently beat Sithole in the final of this year’s Australian Open in January. Play in the Acsa Gauteng Open starts at 9am on Wednesday at the Guateng East Tennis Complex. The finals takes place on Saturday, starting from 9am. SAinfo reporterlast_img read more

Read More →