Qatar wants to make alcohol accessible for visiting fans when it hosts the 2022 World Cup and will use cruise ships to ensure it can accommodate an expected one million visitors, the head of the organising committee told reporters on Thursday.Nasser Al Khater, chief executive of the 2022 World Cup, also promised that fans from Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Egypt, countries currently boycotting the Gulf state, would not be barred. The four have accused Qatar of supporting terrorism, which it denies.Qatar was the surprise winner of the race to hold the tournament in a vote in 2010 and is by far the smallest country in size ever to have hosted the event, raising questions as to how it will manage the influx of fans and whether supporters will be able to let their hair down.“Qatar is a conservative country, it’s a modest country, alcohol is not part of our culture however hospitality is,” Al Khater told a group of reporters.“For the World Cup, we want to make sure alcohol is accessible for fans that travel from abroad that want to have a drink while they are here, so we want to find designated locations for fans to have alcohol other than the traditional places.”Until now, FIFA and local organisers have said only that they had not reached an agreement on whether alcohol would be served in stadiums or fan zones.Al Khater said the country of 2.7 million would also consider lowering the price – currently around $15 for a half litre of beer.“The issue of the cost of alcohol is something that is being discussed right now,” he said. “We recognise there is an issue with price.”Alcohol in Qatar can only be bought and consumed in a handful of hotels while visitors cannot import it into the country. Being drunk in a public place is socially unacceptable.In January, Qatar added a 100 percent alcohol tax that increased prices but then lowered them around 20 to 30 percent.ALL-DAY DRINKINGAsked how Qataris might react to all-day drinking and rowdy behaviour by visiting fans, Al Khater said: “I don’t think it risks alienating Qataris as long as the right formula is found.” He added that security forces needed to find a “delicate way” to cope with anti-social behaviour.They would be trained to “make sure that things which are culturally different are seen in the context that what might be acceptable to an England fan might not be acceptable here, to make sure we bridge that gap,” he said.Al Khater said homosexuals had nothing to fear in a country where homosexual acts are strictly prohibited, although the law is rarely enforced.“Public displays of affection are frowned upon here but that applies to everyone,” he said. “I would like to assure any fan of any gender orientation, religion or race to rest assured that Qatar is one of the safest countries in the world and that they will all be welcomed here.”Although he did not see a high risk of hooliganism, Al Khater said having the fans of all 32 teams in a small area could lead to altercations, adding that Qatar was looking at “unique accommodation solutions” including cruise ships and fan villages in the desert.Qatar still views the tournament as a “World Cup for this region” despite the blockade which has made travel to the country more difficult and pushed air fares up.Of the four countries boycotting Qatar, the teams of Saudi Arabia and Egypt are the most likely to qualify.“We have no issues welcoming fans from blockading countries, they are welcome to come now and they will be welcome to come in 2022,” Al Khater said. “I hope by then that situation would have been resolved.”
Dear Editor,With election for the Mayor of Georgetown looming large, I feel compelled to issue a report card on the current mayor’s performance for the last two years, based on feedback I gathered from many quarters of the capital city.Ability to travel very frequently in luxury and style, with large entourages to the most exotic and distant places in the world off of the backs of the ratepayers. Grade A+(Has shown a considerable knack for wasting the city’s scarce financial resources: wining and dining at posh restaurants, flying first class, staying at five star hotels whilst on useless trips to the farthest reaches of the globe, which have reaped nothing for the city.)Adherence to the Child Protection Laws of Guyana and the protection of ‘whistleblowers’ within City Hall from persecution, discrimination and injustice. Grade F(In collaboration with her sidekick the ‘King,’ she has not only protected the alleged assaulter time and again, but has ensured that whistleblowing at the Council is deterred)Implementation of the most draconian taxation on the citizenry, including unreasonable increases in property taxes. Implementation of an inflated compliance fee on persons wishing to sell their properties; implementation of a fine on shipping containers coming into the city; steep increases on all licences issued by the Council, adding more financial burden on the citizens.Grade A(Is effective in wringing the citizens and businesses dry of all of their finances and savings, whilst providing little or no service)Maintenance of heritage buildings and other municipal properties in the city, such as City Hall, the Kitty Market, the Municipal Abattoir, the City Police Training School, etc.Grade F(Has done very little maintenance work on municipal properties for years, leaving them to fall into rot and ruin; preferring instead to visit other countries and admire their well-maintained heritage buildings)Endearment of new businesses into the city, including dog food vendors, plantain chip sellers, bottled water itinerant vendors, roadside cook-up rice vendors, and ‘touts’ at the minibus parks.Grade A+(Whilst other mayors from around the world are wooing large companies to set up their headquarters in their cities to have international conferences, award ceremonies and mega sport events held there, our city is happy to encourage more illegal vending)Financial management of City Hall.Grade F(Is responsible for carrying up the Council’s overdraft with its bankers to the highest ever with innumerable foreign trips, and with the doling out of contracts allegedly with no adherence to tender or procurement procedures, and hiring of almost 200 friends and family members to super-salaried jobs)Creation of the largest group of junkies, vagrants, beggars and other social rejects in the city, with some of them even bathing nightly on the pavement in front of the Bourda CemeteryGrade A+(Has ensured that the citizens continuously face economic and financial challenges by over-taxation and the implementation of no social programmes)With thanks,Riley Matthews
A charitable organization, Action to Reduce Child Labour in Liberia/ARCH has embarked on reducing child labour through education in Liberia, beginning with three counties.Speaking to the Daily Observer in an exclusive interview recently in Sanniquellie, Project Coordinator A. Alvin Winford, said ARCH is currently working with 3700 vulnerable communities in three counties, including Margibi, Montserrado and Nimba, targeting about 10,000 children.He said, child labour can be reduced through education and the organization is making sure that those targeted children are withdrawn from rubber plantations and sent to school.He explained that the primary concern of ARCH is about children who are working in rubber plantations and not those children selling in the streets.With funding from the United States Department of Labour, the ARCH project is being implemented by the African Network for the Prevention and Protection Against Child Abuse in collaboration with Neglect and Winrock International.Recently, ARCH and its partners conducted a one day workshop for key stakeholders who are also partners in the fight against child labour in Sanniquellie.The workshop was held under the title “Child Sensitive Social Protection and Referral Directory in Reducing Child Labour Works.” It was a referral workshop bringing together 25 participants from Nimba.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Bartica Massacre trial− State witnessA State witness who testified in the Bartica Massacre trial has implicated the co-accused as being part of the “Fineman” gang, which carried out the 2008 massacres at Bartica, Lusignan and Lindo Creek.Dwane Williams, who was a 15-year-old gang member at the time of the February 17, 2008 Bartica attack, told the 12-member jury at the Demerara High Court on Tuesday that co-accused Dennis “Anaconda” Williams and Mark Royden Williams, called “Smallie”, were both involved in not only the Bartica matter, but the Lusignan and Lindo Creek attacks as well.Mark Williams, Dennis Williams and Roger Simon are the three on trial for the 2008 Bartica MassacreHis revelation comes just days after self-confessed Bartica Massacre boat driver Clebert Reece confirmed that co-accused Dennis Williams and Mark Williams were accomplices in the Bartica attack.Rondell “Fineman” RawlinsClebert ReeceDwane, known as “Small Friend”, testified that he camped out in the Buxton, East Coast Demerara backlands before being taken to Bartica by Reece, called “Chi-Chi”. He told the court that he, along with several other individuals, had worked for “Fineman”’s gang. These gang members included: “Papa Willie”; “Saint John” or “John-eye”; “Mud-up”; “Chung Boy”; “Smallie” (Mark Williams); “Kapone” (Michael Caesar) and himself.The State witness related that four weeks after camping out in the Buxton backlands, “John-eye” was shot, and about two weeks after, the men left for the seawall where they were eventually transported to Bartica.Led by State Prosecutor Stacey Goodings, Dwane revealed that he had known Mark Williams and Rondel “Fineman” Rawlins for about five years before they all joined the boat en route to Bartica. He added that he would see Mark on his way to school and further told the court that he worked for “Fineman”. Under cross-examination, the witness revealed that at one point he lived with “Fineman”.Dwane also told the 12-member jury that he had never seen “Anaconda” before the boat ride, but confirmed that “Chi-Chi” was the boat driver.He recounted to the 12-member jury that after hearing “rapid gunshots” as several gang members carried out the Bartica attack, they returned, and “Fineman” shot five men at the Bartica Stelling using a hand gun, while one man was allowed to go free.The surprise witness also recalled that the criminal gang had been camping out for several months before he was finally caught by Police. The camping areas included Linden, Ituni, Christmas Falls and Kwakwani.The court heard that the gang members were taken in an “open-back” Jeep to Linden. Dwane also recalled that during these stints, safes were opened and money, gold, diamonds and keys were all retrieved which corroborated Reece’s account of what transpired when the safes were opened. He told the jury that some time during his stay at the Ituni camp, the members had left for Georgetown.Some time after, the camp was ambushed, “Mud-up” was shot and the other members escaped and fled through the trail and Dwane was caught by Police on the 10th day when he had hitched a ride with a “truck man” who had assisted the gang. Dwane also told the court that he remained in Police custody.Under cross-examination by Mark Williams’ Attorney, Roger Yearwood, Dwane explained that he gave two statements to Police. He stated that the gang was separated for one day only, and noted that he was afraid despite being trained “very well” in the use of AK-47s.He also noted that he knew that persons had been killed at all three of the locations and even pointed out that he knew people would have been hurt before the Bartica attack was carried out. He stated that a total of 36 persons were killed in the attacks at Lusignan, Bartica and Lindo Creek.Yearwood later grilled the witness over the statements he gave to Police following his 2008 capture, and asked if anyone has promised him any reward to testify against the other accused.A visibly agitated Dwane responded that all information was given voluntarily and noted: “When I gave statements, I told them about Bartica, Lusignan and Lindo Creek. Nobody promised me anything.”Dwane, whose Lusignan Massacre charge was withdrawn, will continue his testimony before Justice Roxane George, SC, today.Earlier in the day, the cross-examination of Reece concluded and he claimed that he never saw co-accused Roger Simon at the time of the attack. Meanwhile, he also claimed that even though fellow gang-member Dennis Williams tried to “poison him”, that is not the reason why he gave evidence.
A week after being humbled 39-20 by Australia, the Springboks slumped even further as they found themselves comprehensively outplayed in the forwards and could not cope with the speed and width of the All Black backs.The New Zealanders stepped up several levels with a far more controlled performance from the decidedly rusty shake-down against Fiji last week.Coach Graham Henry rated the performance at 70 percent and saw the biggest improvement in the work of the forwards.“The lineout was very fluent tonight and obviously the boys got scrum dominance as the game went on and we played well at the breakdown. They were the areas last week where we were not as effective as we should have been.”McCaw said he could feel a greater intensity in the All Blacks but they could not afford to get carried away by the 33-point winning margin.“It was not a complete performance. We’ve still got to make sure we don’t think we are good enough yet because at times we got things wrong and turned the ball over.”With 21 key players left at home because of injury, the Springboks were always going to struggle, particularly in the forwards where the more experienced All Blacks feasted on a regular supply of turnover ball.Springboks captain John Smit and backrower Danie Rossouw worked tirelessly to provide some opposition in the forwards but could not contain the All Blacks loose pairing of Richie McCaw and Adam Thomson.With conditions ripe for running rugby, the All Blacks then focused on moving the ball wide where wings Cory Jane and Zac Guildford scored two tries each, and prop Wyatt Crockett also scored his try out towards the touchline.Smit said his side was disappointed with their performance, especially being on the back foot so early in the game and never being in a position to recover.“We’ll try to pull as many positives as we can out of it. But at the end of the day it’s disappointing,” he said.With only four of the Springboks starting 15 having more than seven Test caps the inexperience showed as the All Blacks raced to an 18-7 lead by halftime, and added another 22 unanswered points in the second half.In the process, McCaw overtook Smit as the most successful Test captain with his 52nd victory from 59 Tests.It was also a record-breaking outing for All Blacks pivot Dan Carter, who suffered an off-night with the boot missing four shots at goal but still contributed 10 points to become the top all-time points scorer in Test rugby with 1204, nine clear of England’s Jonny Wilkinson.Carter opened the scoring with an early penalty and the All Blacks stamped their mark on the game soon after with two quick tries.Crockett bagged the first when the Springboks ran out of defenders as the All Blacks over-stretched them by repeatedly moving the ball from one side of the field to the other.From the restart, Ali Williams claimed the ball uncontested, it was chipped over the Springbok backs where the All Blacks were able to regather and Guildford scampered 40 metres to score.South Africa enjoyed a brief period in control midway through the half and scored their sole try when Morne Steyn turned down a shot at goal from 38 metres and kicked for the corner.They won the lineout and a series of forward drives eventually broke the All Black defence with Smit crashing over near the posts for Steyn to convert.But they had little time to celebrate as the All Blacks struck back with Jane breaking free down the right wing and stepping around Steyn to score in the corner.South Africa made an aggressive start to the second half but they no sooner looked threatening than they turned the ball over and promptly found themselves a further seven points down.Carter exposed the limited defence on a long run which ended with Ma’a Nonu held up over the line in the left corner. From the resulting scrum Jane was able to stroll across the line unopposed on the right wing.Guildford scored his second try when Sonny Bill Williams came on as a midfield replacement and created a hole with one of his trade-mark offloads.The All Blacks rounded off their scoring with a planned backline move which put replacement Colin Slade over for a try.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000WELLINGTON, New Zealand – The All Blacks carved up an under-strength Springbok side to open their Tri-Nations account with an emphatic 40-7 victory at Westpac Stadium in Wellington on Saturday.They scored six tries to one in the runaway win as they exposed the inexperience of the South African line-up.
The Organising Secretary who was elected two years ago resigned three months after chairman, Allan Kasavuli had tendered his resignation to leave the cash-strapped club with, Secretary General, George Aladwa, his assistant Prof. Asava Kadima and Committee member, Stephen Mungo as officials.“Today there was demonstration at my work place, people who were carrying placards came to my office chanting ‘Timothy must go, Timothy must go’ so if I’m working for an organization where I’m not appreciated, then I have decided to go.“If I was doing a good work it will be seen in future. I have resigned because I don’t want more troubles, whoever has been hiring goons can have a good sleep and let the other people carry on from where I left,” Lirumbi declared.The financial crisis has seen nine players led by Harambee Stars custodian Wycliffe Kasaya and striker, Jacob Keli terminate their contracts but Kadima said they are persuading the players to reconsider their decision.Skipper Martin Imbalambala has already joined FKF-Premier League side Nakumatt FC who are also hunting the services of Kasaya.Kadima confirmed the club no longer receives Sh550, 000 monthly grants from Kenyan Premier League since they took loan including Sh1.6m to settle salary arrears for former head coach, Pieter Hendrik De Jong.“Since Mumias stopped remitting money to the club in January, we have been unable to fulfill our obligation to pay our staff their salary and allowances for the past four months which totals Sh12m.“We also took a loan at KPL to settle January arrears so that’s why we are conducting a major fundraising tomorrow to at least get something ahead of the second-leg since our monthly expenditure stands at Sh4.2m with Sh2.66m going towards salary while Sh1.5 is for running the club,” the Don who said they only receive Sh500, 000 from gate collections said.The club is set to hold its Annual General Meeting on Tuesday next week where members will discuss various issues among them the leadership of the club that saw three factions claim to be in charge.“We agreed that since Leopards has a constitution and the chairman resigned, it doesn’t mean the other four NEC members cannot run the club as far as we are concerned they are the legitimate officials who ran the club,” former vice chairman, Vincent Shimoli said.Kadima confirmed they had requested to push their GOtv Shield round of 64 clash against FKF Premier League side, Ligi Ndogo to July 4 to enable them sign players.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000AFC Leopards assistant Secretary General, Asava Kadima addresses media June 22.NAIROBI, June 22 –AFC Leopards Organising Secretary, Timothy Lirumbi has resigned with immediate effect, citing frustration from members of the club.Lirumbi who threw in the towel on Monday, was among the NEC Members put under pressure to quit owing to financial problems the club is facing that has seen players and technical bench go four months without salary and allowances.
Captain Feng Xiaoting wept after the final whistle as Lippi, who led Italy to the 2006 World Cup title, struggled to contain his fury.“It was a very disappointing result for us, we deserved three points,” Lippi said, according to the state-run China Daily.“Our performance in the first half was not that good, but we did a very good job in the second half and turned the game around.”“Unfortunately the referee changed the game. I don’t understand why he made that call. It was a fatal decision for us,” Lippi said.Lippi appeared to be referring to the decision by referee Ammar Aljneibi of the UAE to award Syria the pivotal free-kick in stoppage time.Marcello Lippi’s China look likely to miss out on World Cup qualification © AFP / MANAN VATSYAYANANot all decisions went against China, who were handed a lifeline with what looked like a soft penalty to make it 1-1 on 68 minutes.Wu Xi’s volley six minutes later put China in sight of victory but they were stunned when Al Salih swept home his free kick in the third added minute.China, who are investing heavily at international, domestic and grassroots football, are now bottom of Asian qualifying Group A with just two games left.Only the top two teams earn an automatic spot at next year’s World Cup in Russia, with the third-placed side going into play-offs.A distraught skipper Feng said: “We did so well in the second half and we almost got the win.“But this is football. It is so hard for me to accept the result, but we will fight to the end.”China now need big wins over Uzbekistan in August and away to Qatar in September, and hope that other results go their way.Shares(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) SharesChina’s Feng Xiaoting reacts after a 2-2 draw in a World Cup qualifier against Syria left their hopes of reaching the 2018 finals in Russia hanging by a thread © AFP / MANAN VATSYAYANASHANGHAI, China, Jun 14 – Marcello Lippi’s China vowed to fight on after their 2018 World Cup hopes were all but destroyed when Syria’s late equaliser left them bottom of their qualifying group and with their captain in tears.The Italian coach angrily blamed the referee after Ahmad Al Salih’s injury-time free-kick secured a 2-2 draw, dealing a hammer blow to China’s already remote chances.
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers claims Mario Balotelli can shake off his ‘bad boy’ image and emulate Daniel Sturridge’s amazing turnaround.The Italian striker, who joined the Reds from AC Milan for £16million earlier this week, is known for having an erratic off-field lifestyle and regularly fell out with Roberto Mancini during his time at Manchester City.Sturridge struggled to secure a starting XI place at both the Blues and Chelsea, and, following his 2013 switch to Anfield, was facing an uncertain future.But, under Rodgers’ tutelage, the one-time outcast is now one of England’s leading strikers, following a superb season last campaign.And the Northern Irishman insists the same can happen with the 24-year-old.“There’s a lot of background noise with Mario Balotelli,” he told Call Collymore. “He’s a good kid and I really like him. He knows what his flaws are but he’s maturing.“It was the same situation when Daniel Sturridge came to Liverpool. Everyone said what he couldn’t do, that he wasn’t a team player and his attitude wasn’t right. He’s been brilliant since he’s been here.“It’s the same when you look at Mario. He’s got a long way to go but understands he’s at a club now where it’s all about the team.”
Sepp Blatter Sepp Blatter has revealed he will step down as president of FIFA.The Swiss chief was last week re-elected for a fifth term in charge, despite coming under increasing pressure following recent revelations of ‘rampant, systemic, and deep-rooted’ corruption within the organisation.A host of high profile bosses within the game subsequently called for Blatter’s resignation, including FA chairman Greg Dyke and UEFA chief Michel Platini, who said he was disgusted by the scandal.And, in an astonishing and unexpected turn of events, Blatter has indeed called time on his 17-year reign, just four days after his re-election.Addressing a press conference gathered at the FIFA headquarters in Zurich, he called an extraordinary congress “as soon as possible”, saying “a new president will be elected to follow me”.That election is to take place at between December and March and Blatter will remain in position until then.He said: “I will organise an extraordinary congress for a replacement for me as president. I will not stand. I am now free from the constraints of an election.“I will be in a position to focus on profound reforms. For many years we have called for reforms. But these are not sufficient.“I have thoroughly considered and thought about my presidency and the last 40 years in my life. These years were closely related to FIFA and the wonderful sport of football.“I appreciate and love FIFA more than anything else. I only want to do the best for FIFA and my institution.“I felt compelled to stand for re-election, as I believed that this was the best thing for the organisation. That election is over but FIFA’s challenges are not. FIFA needs a profound overhaul.”The announcement came after FIFA admitted on Tuesday it paid $10million destined for the South Africa World Cup to an account controlled by the disgraced former vice-president Jack Warner.This payment, which followed a letter from the South African FA to FIFA secretary general Jerome Valcke, is at the heart of the FIFA bribery scandal.A US justice department indictment of 18 people on corruption charges says the money was paid to Warner and his deputy Chuck Blazer in return for them voting for the 2010 World Cup to be played in South Africa.Blatter’s resignation is also sure to create uncertainty over the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, which are being hosted by Russia and Qatar respectively.A Swiss criminal investigation is investigating the bids for the two tournaments, while the report from US attorney Michael Garcia’s investigation into bidding has yet to be published in full. 1
Here are the top transfer-related stories in Friday’s newspapers…Jose Mourinho wants Antoine Griezmann to form a new Manchester United strike partnership with Alvaro Morata. Atletico Madrid forward Griezmann has long been identified as United’s top summer target and, following Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s knee injury, Mourinho has now set his sights on Spain international Morata, who is seeking to leave Real Madrid this summer. (Daily Telegraph)Meanwhile, Neymar believes Manchester United are prepared to activate the €200million release clause in his Barcelona contract. The Premier League club is seeking to resolve the damage done to Jose Mourinho’s summer recruitment strategy by Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s double cruciate ligament rupture. (Daily Record)Forward Jeison Lucumi dreams of securing a move to Manchester United after impressing in Colombia’s top tier. The 22-year-old admitted he would jump at the chance to join Jose Mourinho’s side after a breakthrough season for his side America de Cali following their promotion to Categoria Primera A. (Daily Mail)Michail Antonio will seek to leave West Ham United this summer after the collapse of his relationship with the board and resentment over the club’s handling of a hamstring injury that has ended his season. The 27-year-old has rejected a new contract due to unhappiness at being offered significantly lower wages than West Ham’s January signings, Robert Snodgrass and José Fonte. (The Times)Slaven Bilic has dropped the strongest of hints that Liverpool striker Daniel Sturridge is at the top of West Ham’s summer transfer wish list. (Daily Express)Brighton goalkeeper David Stockdale will snub West Ham and Leeds by signing a new two-year contract with the Premier League rookies. (Daily Mirror)Manchester City believe they can tempt Tottenham Hotspur into selling Kyle Walker even though chairman Daniel Levy would prefer to push the right-back overseas if manager Mauricio Pochettino gives the green light to a move. (Daily Telegraph)Chelsea and Everton will have to break the bank for Napoli star Kalidou Koulibaly… AND hope the Italians can land a suitable replacement for him. Centre-back Koulibaly has been a target for both clubs for over a year following his impressive performances in Serie A. (Daily Mail)Toby Alderweireld is in line for a new deal that could see the Tottenham defender double his money. Though the 28-year-old has a contract that lasts until 2019, Tottenham are aware Alderweireld is attracting attention from home and abroad. (Daily Mail)West Brom are closing in on a £100,000 deal for Lincoln defender Sean Raggett. The 23-year-old has played a key role in his club’s National League title-winning season, helping The Imps to a Football League return. (Daily Mail)Malaga’s former Barcelona striker Sandro Ramirez is in the frame to join Southampton this summer. The Spain Under-21 international, who has been on the Tottenham radar in recent windows, has scored 12 goals for the La Liga strugglers this season. (Daily Mirror)And here are the latest talkSPORT.com headlines…?Frank Lampard believes Pep Guardiola expected too much from his Manchester City squad after failing to secure a trophy in his first season at the clubAndrei Kanchelskis believes Manchester United will be in big trouble if David de Gea leaves for Real Madrid, and has told the club to do whatever it takes to keep him this summerDele Alli has no reason to leave Tottenham right now, according to Darren AndertonLiverpool have joined Tottenham in the hunt for Bayern Munich winger Douglas CostaRoma are ready to buy back Sassuolo star Lorenzo Pellegrini – before flogging him to Chelsea or Juventus for £25mEverton have set aside £21million in order to tie up a deal for Anderlecht star Youri TielemansHull City are closing in on a move for Fenerbahce defender Simon Kjaer