One nation, one heart for Gilas Pilipinas!

first_imgLOOK: Kryz Uy, Slater Young expecting first son SEA Games 2019: No surprises as Gilas Pilipinas cruises to basketball gold PLAY LIST 06:27SEA Games 2019: No surprises as Gilas Pilipinas cruises to basketball gold01:45Explosive Gilas Pilipinas not yet at its best, says Tim Cone00:50Trending Articles02:15Sinas: 2,500 NCRPO cops poised to support Taal eruption relief ops01:52Phivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study01:04Daybreak as smoke, ash billows from Taal volcano01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal Filipino basketball fans can watch and support, on their smartphones and mobile devices, the stint of Gilas Pilipinas in the much-anticipated FIBA World Cup 2019 to be held in China starting August 31.  With Smart’s Free YouTube For All promo, every Filipino can watch and cheer as our basketball heroes fight for flag and country—against all the odds—wherever we are. As we cheer on from the opening tip off of the first game to the closing buzzer of the last, following Gilas’ journey on YouTube will allow us to live up to the recognition of being the best basketball fans in the world. ADVERTISEMENT Be part of the action with Smart’s Free YouTube for All, which allows Smart customers to stream all the games on the fastest LTE network. Just dial *123# to avail of #FreeYouTubeForAll to keep up with the FIBA World Cup games live. Show one-nation, one-heart support for Gilas Pilipinas on social media with the following official hashtags: #ParaSaBayan, #SmartGilas, #FIBAWC and #PilipinasGotGame. Led by Coach Yeng Guiao, the final 12 announced last August 25, will be comprised of World Cup returnees Andray Blatche, June Mar Fajardo, Japeth Aguilar, and National Team mainstay Gabe Norwood.  PBA Rookies CJ Perez and Robert Bolick will also get a crack at basketball glory this early in their careers with the likes of Paul Lee, Troy Rosario, Roger Pogoy, Raymund Almazan, Kiefer Ravena, and original Gilas team participant Mark Barroca.  With Smart, you’re sure to never miss a Gilas Pilipinas game at the #FIBAWC2019. Thanks to the reliable high-speed connectivity from the country’s undisputed fastest LTE network, as awarded by globally renowned internet testing companies Ookla, OpenSignal, Tutela, and P3. ADVERTISEMENT US Open: Rafael Nadal reaches 3rd round in walkover as Kokkinakis hurt Join the #PilipinasGotGame campaign as our local pros battle it out with Italy, Serbia and Angola in the Group D elimination round of the FIBA World Cup 2019. Gilas will play Italy on August 31, Serbia on September 2 and Angola on September 4.  The games will be aired live on ESPN5 and its YouTube channel. FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSGinebra looks set for another title“Smart has always been a passionate supporter of the country’s sports programs, particularly basketball.  We are big basketball fans too, and like every Filipino fan, are fully invested in our national team’s basketball journey. We are eager to watch every play, every highlight and cheer for Gilas Pilipinas in every game.” said Oscar Reyes, Jr. Head of Consumer Business, Smart.  He added, “We are happy to be able to bring the FIBA Gilas Pilipinas action straight to the smartphones of millions of our Filipino customers with #FreeYouTubeForAll.”  LOOK: Taal Volcano island 2 days after eruption Robredo to visit Batangas families displaced by Taal erruption Experience FIBA World Cup live with Smart’s Free YouTube for All and for more details visit www.smart.com.ph, follow Smart Communications on Facebook and @livesmart on Instagram and Twitter. ADVTSports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. center_img LATEST STORIES MOST READ View comments No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist ‘People evacuated on their own’ Residents rescue horses, farm animals left on volcano island Teen dead, another hurt in vehicular collision in Santiago City Heart Evangelista, Kim Chiu, more celebs appeal for animal rescue after Taal eruptionlast_img read more

Lewis Hamilton on ‘good hunting ground’ at US Grand Prix

first_imgNo need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Filipino duathletes eye podium sweep in SEA Games That makes it an almost perfect spot for more.Win another race and another championship on Sunday and the Mercedes driver will sit all alone in second in Formula One history, with only a short step left to reach the top.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4The British driver is on the cusp of securing a sixth career championship that would move him past Argentina’s Juan Manuel Fangio, the “Godfather” of F1 drivers, and within one of the record seven won by Germany’s Michael Schumacher, who is still regarded as the sport’s greatest champion.Hamilton should have little trouble doing it. All he needs to do is finish eighth or higher on Sunday. 2 village execs nabbed in Bohol buy-bust MOST READ Daybreak as smoke, ash billows from Taal volcano PLAY LIST 01:04Daybreak as smoke, ash billows from Taal volcano01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee DSWD Bicol donates P1.5M worth of food packs for Taal eruption evacuees “It’s been a good hunting ground for me, so very excited to go there and who knows whether we can get the job done?,” Hamilton said. “We’ll hopefully have a good race there.”He’s almost downplaying his chances. There’s not much reason to do that at this point.Hamilton nearly closed out the championship last week with his surprising win in Mexico City , but teammate Valtteri Bottas’ third-place finish pushed the title chase into another week. Bottas is the only driver still mathematically in the championship, but just barely.“I don’t mind,” Hamilton said after not quite closing it out last week. “I love racing.”Hamilton didn’t win the Texas race last year, finishing a third as Kimi Raikkonen took the checkered flag with Ferrari.ADVERTISEMENT Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, of Britain, celebrates on the podium after winning the Formula One Mexico Grand Prix auto race at the Hermanos Rodriguez racetrack in Mexico City, Saturday, Oct. 26, 2019. (AP Photo/Eduardo Verdugo)AUSTIN, Texas — Lewis Hamilton has a certain love affair with the rolling hills and scrub land in the heart of Texas.It’s easy to see why. The Mercedes driver has been almost invincible here, with five wins at the United States Grand Prix since 2012, including a season championship secured in 2015.ADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Verstappen will be looking to put a bad race in Mexico behind him. He was stripped of pole position in Mexico City because of a penalty for not slowing down while under a yellow flag in qualifying. He then punctured a tire on the fourth lap. A car and driver that had the pace to win finished sixth.Verstappen finished second in Texas last year and won his late-lap duel with Hamilton for the position.“A lot is possible at this track as there are so many good overtaking opportunities, which makes things interesting in the race,” said Verstappen, who will be racing his 100th career grand prix at just age 22.Hamilton, who is driving his 248th, may be wary of talk like that from Verstappen. Their cars touched on the opening lap in Mexico City, and Hamilton said he’s learned to give Verstappen a lot of room to race.“It’s the smartest thing you can do,” Hamilton said.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next ‘Gago’ LATEST STORIES ‘People evacuated on their own’ Phivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study 400 evacuees from Taal eruption take refuge in Mt. Banahaw But he was in spectacular form last week in Mexico City, getting his 10th win of the season on a track that favored rivals Red Bull and Ferrari.Hamilton is a defacto spokesman for growing Formula One in the U.S. Still young and stylish at 34, an environmental activist on social media , Hamilton is a valuable face and force for promoting the series in America, which hasn’t been as easy as F1 officials hoped when they returned to American soil with the Texas track and race in 2012.Efforts to start other races haven’t been so easy. A dream race in Miami couldn’t take hold in the downtown venue on Biscayne Bay the series wanted and the current idea of racing around the parking lot of the stadium where the NFL’s Miami Dolphins play has run into fierce opposition from locals.The Texas race has been a stronghold and Hamilton still does his part. He was in New York City with an event in Times Square before coming to Austin.Hamilton sees himself — the first and still only black driver in Formula One who comes from a middle class family — as a story that can be inspiring to an American audience.“I think my story and my family’s story is something that a lot of people in different countries can relate to,” Hamilton said.Ferrari and Red Bull could still put up a fight Sunday at the Circuit of the Americas.Ferrari has started on pole the last six races and the U.S. Grand Prix winner has come from the front row every year since the Texas track opened. The recent runs from pole have produced just three victories however, and none since Singapore on Sept. 22.The team is partly to blame for not winning through a series of blunders or being outmaneuvered by Mercedes. In Mexico City, Ferrari put drivers Sebastian Vettel on different pit strategies and both surrendered the lead to change tires at different times.“We certainly want to do better than that,” Ferrari Team Principal Mario Binotto said. View commentslast_img read more

Trading Magnolia-bound Banchero not easy for Alaska coach Cariaso

first_imgLava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netMANILA, Philippines—Alaska beefed up its forward positions while shipping arguably its best guard in Chris Banchero to Magnolia.PBA Commissioner Willie Marcial on Sunday approved the trade that sent Banchero to the Hotshots in exchange for Rodney Brondial and Robbie Herndon.ADVERTISEMENT “It’s always hard to let go regardless of their stats, letting go of someone or moving someone is always difficult,” said Cariaso. “It’s part of the job, it’s part of the profession so it happens.”Cariaso added that he made sure to talk to Banchero and also to Carl Bryan Cruz, who was traded to Blackwater earlier in the conference, before any whiff of information made it to the media.“The ones I made, I made sure that I called them right away, so they heard it from me first,” said Cariaso. “That’s really important for me.”ADVERTISEMENT Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next DSWD Bicol donates P1.5M worth of food packs for Taal eruption evacuees 2 village execs nabbed in Bohol buy-bust PBA approves Ray Parks trade to TNT ‘Gago’ ‘People evacuated on their own’ 400 evacuees from Taal eruption take refuge in Mt. Banahawcenter_img Phivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study 2 buses bound for SEA Games opening collide in Bulacan PLAY LIST 00:412 buses bound for SEA Games opening collide in Bulacan06:27SEA Games 2019: No surprises as Gilas Pilipinas cruises to basketball gold03:46Lacson: PH lost about P161.5B tax revenue from big trading partners in 201701:04Daybreak as smoke, ash billows from Taal volcano01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist LATEST STORIES MOST READ “This was a coaching staff’s decision, so I really feel that this trade is going to help,” said Alaska head coach Jeffrey Cariaso after Alaska’s 106-99 win over NorthPort in the Governors’ Cup Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.“Chris is a really good player, he’s done a lot for us at Alaska but in all honesty he’s the one the other teams wanted so for me to bring the parts we need we also need to give something up.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4Banchero was a vital piece to Alaska’s core for several seasons. He averaged 10.1 points, 4.9 rebounds, and 4.4 assists for the Aces this conference.Trading Banchero way, however, wasn’t an easy decision for Cariaso. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. View commentslast_img read more

Akhuetie, UP looking to oust UST quickly: ‘We don’t want to take chances’

first_imgMANILA, Philippines—On its way to No. 2, University of the Philippines defeated every team in the league during the elimination round of UAAP Season 82 except for two—University of Santo Tomas and defending champion Ateneo.ADVERTISEMENT UST swept UP in the eliminations and won the two games with an average of 11 points.Experience-wise, the Fighting Maroons hold the advantage after they went to the finals in Season 81 before losing to eventual champion Ateneo, while the Growling Tigers haven’t been to the Final Four since 2015.Akhuetie, however, doesn’t see a Finals appearance in 2018 as an advantage and that his matchup against 2019 MVP Soulemane Chabi Yo wouldn’t matter in the grander scheme of things.“We have to go out there, and you know give it your best and play like it’s your last game,” said Akhuetie. “We’re just going to play basketball, that’s how it is, that’s what it will be. We just have to go out there and give our best to represent the school and the community.”ADVERTISEMENT View comments Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee Creamline caps off perfect run with PVL Open Conference title Phivolcs: Cloud seeding in ashfall affected areas needs study Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles01:26Filipino culture takes spotlight as 2019 SEA Games officially opens00:50Trending Articles01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown01:54MMDA deploys rescue team to Batangas following Taal eruption Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. 2 village execs nabbed in Bohol buy-bust Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next 400 evacuees from Taal eruption take refuge in Mt. Banahaw No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Taal Volcano’s lava fountain weakens, but Phivolcs says it’s not sign of slowing down ‘People evacuated on their own’ But Season 81’s runner-up has a chance to exorcise one of its demons in the Final Four with the Fighting Maroons, armed with a twice-to-beat advantage, looking to oust the Growling Tigers.Former MVP Bright Akhuetie said the team is hell-bent in taking that one win to get to a finals rematch with the Blue Eagles.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4“We lost in the elimination, we lost the two games, but we want to get that win to make it to the finals,” said Akhuetie Saturday at Epsilon Chi Center in UP Diliman.“This is a different level and you know everybody’s going to come out hard. We don’t want to take chances and you just want to go out there and finish the first game.” LATEST STORIES For the complete collegiate sports coverage including scores, schedules and stories, visit Inquirer Varsity. MOST READ DSWD Bicol donates P1.5M worth of food packs for Taal eruption evacueeslast_img read more

Doping on the rise, but WADA lacks resources to investigate

first_imgMicrosoft ends free Windows 7 security updates on Tuesday President-Elect of World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Witold Banka, left, and President of World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) Craig Reedie, right, speak during a press conference after the WADA’s extraordinary Executive Committee (ExCo) on the Russian doping data manipulation, in Lausanne, Switzerland, Monday, Dec. 9, 2019. WADA bans Russia from international sporting events for four years. (Laurent Gillieron/Keystone via AP)MONTREAL — The World Anti-Doping Agency said Thursday more athletes are being caught cheating but it often lacks the resources to investigate.WADA published statistics showing that 1,804 doping rule violations were recorded in 2017 — the most recent year for which statistics are available — with a 13.1% rise on the year before.ADVERTISEMENT No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Drug tests aren’t the only tool at WADA’s disposal. Investigations of athletes and coaches are increasingly important, with 345 violations found in 2017, the highest number on record and a 28% rise compared to the year before.However, WADA’s own investigations unit is struggling to cope with an “acute” lack of resources, according to an audit published Thursday.The audit said the quality of work was “exceptional” but investigating a vast archive of Russian doping data — which WADA later found had been doctored — put strain on the unit.Relegating other investigations to “secondary importance” risks that “the department (and through it, WADA) could be criticized for choosing and executing on its objectives arbitrarily,” the audit said.“For the credibility of anti-doping, it is also essential to process all sources of information. That is not currently possible,” the report said, adding that some personnel risked burnout.ADVERTISEMENT Durham vows to lay it all on the line to help Meralco extend semis series Fans fill up Philippine Arena for SEA Games opening PLAY LIST 01:02Fans fill up Philippine Arena for SEA Games opening00:50Trending Articles03:30PH’s Rogen Ladon boxing flyweight final (HIGHLIGHTS)01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown01:54MMDA deploys rescue team to Batangas following Taal eruption MOST READ Leonardo DiCaprio, Taika Waititi, other stars react to Oscar nominations ‘People evacuated on their own’ Italian athletes racked up the most violations with 171, followed by competitors from France and the United States. Russia, which on Thursday said it plans to appeal wide-ranging sanctions imposed by WADA, placed fifth.While the number of offenses is on the rise, the total number is middling in historical terms, ranking below 2013, 2014 and 2015. Bodybuilding was found to be the dirtiest sport with 266 violations, followed by track and field and cycling.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4Global sport doping cases up 13% in 2017—WADAcenter_img Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. NFA assures ample rice supply in ashfall, eruption-affected areas LATEST STORIES When Pops met Martin’s son Santino Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Thailand reports case of coronavirus from China Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee View commentslast_img read more

Tatum scores career-high 41, Celtics dump Pelicans

first_img‘People evacuated on their own’ The third-year forward made six 3-pointers and scored a career-high 41 points as Boston cruised past the short-handed New Orleans Pelicans, 140-105 on Saturday night.Tatum’s first career 40-point performance helped the Celtics snap a season-high, three-game skid.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSAndray Blatche has high praise for teammate Kai SottoSPORTSBig differenceSPORTSAlmazan status stays uncertain ahead of Game 4“Shots were going in. It felt good. I felt like we played with a purpose today on both ends, from the beginning of the game,” Tatum said. “I felt like we did our job. I know we haven’t been playing well lately. It felt good to start the game off right.”Enes Kanter added 22 points and 19 rebounds, marking season highs in both categories. Gordon Hayward had 19 points and Kemba Walker finished with 17 points and seven assists. Lava gushes out of Taal Volcano as villagers flee Boston shot 14 of 29 from the 3-point line and tied a season high for points.Frank Jackson scored 22 points for the Pelicans. Jaxson Hayes added 20.“We just never got any traction offensively or defensively, really,” Pelicans coach Alvin Gentry said. “They took us out of just about everything we tried to do.”New Orleans played without Derrick Favors because a right hamstring strain, Jrue Holiday sat his fourth straight game with a left elbow contusion, Kenrich Williams missed his third consecutive game with back soreness and J.J. Redick sat with a left hamstring strain.Hayes and E’Twaun Moore started in place of Williams and Favors.ADVERTISEMENT More than 40 quakes hound areas reeling from Taal Volcano’s eruption US stocks climb ahead of trade deal, sending S&P 500 to record high The Celtics exploited the absences early. Tatum was active from a variety of spots on the floor, connecting on eight of his first nine shots. He scored 22 points in the the first half to help the Celtics build as much as a 22-point lead.Tatum reached 37 points in the third quarter, but badly missed back-to-back 3-point attempts. During a break in the action, Stevens called him over to the bench for a quick conversation.Tatum said Stevens told him just to relax and that he’d get to 40.“I think everybody could tell I wanted to get it,” Tatum said. “So ‘just take a deep breath for a second and go back out there.’”A few trips and a pair of finger roll finishes at the rim put over the magic number.Tatum said he’ll take his night in stride like he’s tried to do each of the last three seasons.“I never get too high or too low when I play well or if I don’t,” he said. “For me, I feel like I got a long way to go. And the guys I look up to, they have nights like this more often than not. … I’m just gonna try to do it more often, be consistent and continue to get better.”TIP-INSPelicans: Were outscored 74-42 in the paint. … Shot 35 percent (9 of 26) with five turnovers in the first quarter.Celtics: Tatum reached double figures for the 28th consecutive game, extending a career high. It was his fifth career game with at least 30 points. … Set a new season high for points in a quarter with 41 in the first period. It surpassed the 39 points they scored in the first quarter of their Nov. 9 win over Spurs. The 72 first-half points tied a season high. No need to wear face masks in Metro Manila, says scientist Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. ‘People evacuated on their own’ FILE PHOTO – BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – DECEMBER 12: Jayson Tatum #0 of the Boston Celtics points down court during the game against the Philadelphia 76ers at TD Garden on December 12, 2019 in Boston, Massachusetts. Maddie Meyer/Getty Images/AFPBOSTON — Celtics coach Brad Stevens said giving his team a day off following its worst losing streak of the season felt like the right thing to do.It certainly re-energized Jayson Tatum.ADVERTISEMENTcenter_img Pagasa sees cloudy skies, scattered rain showers in volcanic eruption-hit areas Serena donates winnings to help Australia bushfire victims Giannis Antetokounmpo powers Bucks in bounce back win over Celtics PLAY LIST 02:29Giannis Antetokounmpo powers Bucks in bounce back win over Celtics00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:05Poor visibility, nakaapekto sa maraming lugar sa Batangas03:028,000 pulis sa Region 4-A, tuloy ang trabaho03:57Phivolcs, nahihirapan sa komunikasyon sa Taal01:04Sold-out: Stores run out of face masks after Taal spews ash01:45Iran police shoot at those protesting plane shootdown01:54MMDA deploys rescue team to Batangas following Taal eruption Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next MOST READ MILESTONE WATCHKanter becomes the first Celtics reserve to record 22 or more points and 19 or more rebounds in a single game since Larry Bird (March 16, 1982).MAKING PROGRESSPelicans rookie forward Zion Williamson was again on the floor for some pregame work, this time participating in some light 3-on-3 with teammates.Gentry says the No. 1 overall pick continues to make progress.“The problem we’ve had is that we haven’t had an opportunity to practice,” Gentry said. “He does some development workouts and things like that. … There will come a time when we stick him out to play but we don’t have an exact date.”UP NEXTPelicans: Conclude three-game road trip at Detroit on Monday.Celtics: Host the Bulls on Monday. LATEST STORIES Air quality in NCR now improving after Taal ashfall View commentslast_img read more

Early childhood development

first_imgAccording to findings of The Lancet’s new Series, ‘Advancing Early Childhood Development: From Science to Scale’, an estimated 43 per cent – 249 million – of children under five in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) are at an elevated risk of poor development due to extreme poverty and stunting.This most recent finding is indeed shocking when one considers what this means for a country’s development and more particularly, the future of its children. Developing countries such as Guyana must therefore heed the call for increased focus to be placed on early childhood development, especially when it comes to allocating the necessary resources aimed at supporting the relevant programmes.On a more global scale, the findings in this Series underscore the importance of increased global commitment to early childhood development. Co-author of the Series, Professor Linda M Richter warned: “We now know how high the cost of inaction is, and new evidence makes clear that the time to act is now. We hope the evidence in this Series will help countries reach more pregnant women and young children with preventive and promotive services that have the potential to drastically improve developmental outcomes for children as well as their adult health, wellbeing, and economic productivity.”According to WHO, research shows that a child’s brain develops faster in the first two to three years than at any other time in life: “These early years are also a critical period of adaptability and responsiveness to interventions. When young children are deprived of nutrition, stimulation, and protection, the damaging effects can produce long-term detriments for families and communities.”In Guyana, there are weaknesses in certain areas in relation to early childhood development, especially as it relates to the collection of data. More often than not, the relevant data is not readily available to help policy makers and development partners design effective early childhood development programmes that would have lasting impacts.As noted by UNICEF in one of its previous reports, much progress has been made in terms of access to preventive and curative healthcare for children and indicators for immunisation reflect this. However, there is a concern about relatively high infant mortality rates.Further, chronic malnutrition continues to be a problem and displays significant geographical disparities. For example, the national averages for stunting are somewhere around 10 per cent but could be much higher in hinterland communities. Poor diet and repeated bouts of infectious disease in childhood are considered the main causes.The case has been made for huge investments in the first 1000 days of a child’s life, starting with a woman’s pregnancy. In this most recent report, the authors stress the strong position of the health sector in providing an entry point for early childhood interventions – especially in support of nurturing care.The sector’s ability to access women and children during the critical period from conception through early childhood presents an opportunity to integrate low-cost interventions, such as WHO/UNICEF’s Care for Child Development, and Reach Up and Learn, into existing maternal and child health and nutrition services.Interventions need to be available early.The authors propose several ways the global community can scale-up support for early childhood development services. These include: Encouraging the adoption and implementation of policies to create supportive environments for families to provide nurturing care for young children; Building capacity and strengthening coordination to promote early childhood development through existing health, nutrition, education, social, and child protection services; Strengthening measurement and ensuring accountability for early childhood development services; Increasing research, and fostering global and regional leadership and action; and Expanding political will and funding through advocacy for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).Certainly, the Lancet research is further proof that much more needs to be done by governments and policy makers in developing countries with the support of other international development partners to ensure that our children are given the best care and support, beginning with the earliest stages of their lives.What children experience in the earliest days and years of life has a tremendous impact on shaping and defining their future.last_img read more

Noise nuisance

first_imgGovernments come and go but the scourge of noise nuisance continues unabated, even though the adverse health effects of noise are trumpeted at various forums and complaints by those affected are plentiful. There are so many people who seem to be oblivious to the injurious effects to general health and wellbeing of victims when perpetrators uncaringly engage in activities which create noise nuisance. According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), noise causes a wide range of health effects, including: sleep disturbance; cardiovascular effects; damage to work and school performance; hearing impairment including tinnitus.The WHO also avers that noise has negative impacts on cognitive performance. For recall and reading, a reduction of the day and night noise level by 5 dB(A) within the range of 65–80 dB(A) was shown to improve performance by almost 10 per cent. For attention and memory, a 5 dB(A) reduction in average noise level results in approximately two to three per cent improvement of performance. The Organisation surmises that adverse impacts of noise on cognitive performance can lead to a reduction in the productivity at work and the learning performance at school.The lack of a sustained campaign against noise nuisance has created a dynamic where the noise emanating from various sources has grown to unbearable proportions countrywide.It would appear that playing music loudly has become part of our national culture. The situation has become worse because of advances in electronic technology which has helped musical sets to become much more powerful than what they were a couple of decades ago.Announcements by several Home Affairs Ministers over the years, that the Guyana Police Force (GPF) will adopt a ‘no nonsense’ approach and the full force of the law will deal with offenders, have all come to naught.Although the Ministry has over the years admitted that it continues to receive numerous complaints from senior citizens, the sick, working parents, students and several other law abiding people, to the effect that they are being affected by loud, repetitive and continuous noise emanating from a range of places in the different Police divisions, there is no evidence pointing to any long-term relief for victims.Reports verify that checks made at the locations complained about, on specified days and times, have re-enforced the validity and justification of the complaints, yet little or no relief is provided by law enforcement agencies, even though, sporadically, relevant Divisional Commanders of the GPF have been provided with the details pertaining to the complaints and directed to take appropriate action to ensure that Subsection (1) of Section 174 A of the Summary Jurisdiction (Offences) Act, as amended by Act No. 1 of 1989, is not breached.The law states: “No person shall, in any road, street, public place or land or in building or premises, by operating or causing or suffering to be operated any stereo set, juke box, radio, wireless loudspeaker, gramophone, amplifier, automatic piano or similar instrument of music, or by any other means whatsoever, make or cause or suffer to be made any noise which shall be so loud and so continuous or repetitive as to cause a nuisance to occupants of any premises in the neighbourhood.”Another aspect of the noise nuisance the Ministry should look at is loud music emanating from privately owned vehicles.Somehow or the other it would appear that the operators believe they have the right to play music as loudly as they feel.The campaign against noise nuisance must be relentless and sustained or else this scourge will not be stopped because it seems that some people get a sense of pleasure when they play loud music and disturb others.last_img read more

VAT on Education

first_imgDear Editor,One would have expected the Guyana Teachers’ Union (GTU) to have been more proactive than just voicing their concerns a few times in the media. The GTU have a few thousand teachers who are financial members, and they have easy access to parents. Recently, we saw School of the Nations, a private school, collecting approximately 14,000 signatures. Just imagine: ONE school can collect that many signatures, but the GTU, which have the ability to collect approximately ten times that amount in just one or two weeks, have been almost silent on the matter. Is the GTU afraid to use the masses at their disposal, or are they living in a small box?Each school receives an Annual Grant (Money) from the Government each year. This grant varies according to the level of schools (Nursery, Primary and Secondary), and also according to the grade of schools (Grade A, Grade B, etc). For example, a Nursery School gets $ 131,000; a Grade C Primary School (Chateau Margot) gets 0,000; and a Grade A Secondary School (Annandale and Hope) gets 0,000. This grant is used to purchase stationery, cleaning supplies, and a few other items that the school needs. The grant given cannot meet the full demands of the school, therefore the PTA always has to assist in the best way possible; and those schools which don’t have a strong PTA to support them try to stretch their resources to make ends meet. Teachers are given a few pens, one eraser, one sharpener, one ruler, one or two markers, a few sheets of cardboard, and a few other items of stationery for the entire academic year, September to July (40 weeks). With VAT being chargeable on ALL stationery items, it simply means that 14% of the Grant will go to VAT, and less items will be purchased for the schools and circulated among teachers in schools.If we use the figures mentioned above – which are given as grants – we will have the following results:Nursery Schools will now pay approximately ,340 in VAT, leaving only approximately 2,660 to actually do purchasesPrimary Schools (Grade C) will now pay approximately ,400 in VAT, leaving only approximately 7,600 to actually do purchasesSecondary Schools (Grade A) will now pay approximately ,400 in VAT, leaving only approximately 9,600 to actually do purchases.Therefore, it’s either the PTA, which is funded by parents, who have to carry this huge burden; or teachers have to dive into their pockets to purchase more stationery items for themselves. It’s no secret that teachers also serve in the capacity as parents; therefore, the ‘Small Basket’ in which they are carrying their hard earned salaries will be almost empty before it reaches home to purchase food for their families. They, too, have to pay VAT on water, electricity and telephone services. They also have to find money to purchase new tyres for their vehicles; pay the increase on fitness and revenue licences for vehicles; pay the increase on gasoline, etc. Also, since the APNU/AFC Administration took office, teachers have not received their clothing allowances for two consecutive years thus far, 2016 and 2017 – a total of ,000 (,000 per year).I am making a public call to the GTU to start a petition against this unthinking Government, to have VAT removed totally from Education. Teachers need representation for their monthly dues. GTU should plan a nationwide protest and/or strike, since this is a national concern.Sincerely,Suresh SinghYoung educatorlast_img read more

Granger has disappointed many Guyanese

first_imgDear Editor,I read in the print media that President Granger was warning about the destructive nature of some ‘restless, provocative’ calls from society. The man has not grasped that the PNC-led coalition got into power only because the allegations of PPP corruption and human rights abuses had become more than Guyanese could take. Knowing the inherently racist nature of the PNC – it being an African-based political party whose constituents were taught fear of Indo-Guyanese by the PNC’s leaders over the years – the Coalition had to be ‘constructed’ to generate mass appeal, to attract Indians also. The hope that the PNC had learnt from history and would change and treat Indo-Guyanese more equitably has been lost with the treatment meted out to sugar workers, among other issues. The fact is: the PNC has lived up to its racist, socially destructive political thinking of promoting African Guyanese while actively retarding Indo-Guyanese economically.This charge also applies to the PPP, and underlies why Guyanese need to form new political parties to push Guyana forward. Guyanese have three years to get prepared to ‘free’ themselves again, or lose another eight years of their future to our racist politics.Granger has disappointed many Guyanese. As has already been observed in the press, Granger has shown himself to be wholly lacking in vision, political perspective, and leadership skills necessary to move his party away from its self-destructive politics, which is itself necessary for forcing political and social change at the national level. The question is: who next should be put as our president? Where are our political leaders?Yours faithfully,Lance Cumberbatchlast_img read more