New Delhi, Nov 21 (PTI) BJP today appointed Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal its Assam unit president and also the head of an election management committee it constituted for the poll-bound state, signalling that he could be its chief ministerial face.Making the announcement, Union Minister Prakash Javadekar said Himanta Biswa Sarma, a state Congress heavyweight who recently joined BJP along with many Congress MLAs, will be the committees convener.The partys decision is a break from its Bihar Assembly poll strategy as it had not formed any state wide election committee and instead put many outside as well as local leaders in charge of various zones. A massive loss in Bihar triggered a backlash from within the party over its campaign.Sonowal currently holds the independent charge of Sports and Youths Affairs Ministry.Javadekar parried query on whether Sonowal will be the partys chief ministerial face, saying a decision will be taken by the Parliamentary Board at an appropriate time.”This is the beginning of our election preparation for Assam. In 2016, BJP will return to its winning ways,” he said.Party president Amit Shah will go to Dibrugarh on November 27 to attend a party meeting, Javadekar said.Assam is the only one of the five states going to the polls in 2016 which BJP has a realistic chance of winning. After winning Assembly elections in four states in 2014, it suffered massive defeats in Delhi and Bihar that has invigorated the opposition.Sonowal (53), who was All Assam Students Union president and AGP leader before joining BJP in 2011, headed the partys Assam unit before he was made a Minister in the Narendra Modi government.advertisementBJP won most Lok Sabha seats in Assam in 2014 elections and expects to repeat its feat in the Assembly polls likely to be held in April-May.The term of Siddhartha Bhattacharya, who was was appointed head of Assam BJP, ended in October.Javadekar said Bhattacharya has been appointed as the partys national spokesperson for north eastern states. He will also be one of the three vice-chairmen of the election management committee along with MPs Ramen Deka and Rajen Gohain. (MORE) PTI KR PRM
The law requires that for each conch season, the rate prescribed by the Minister The duties fund the monitoring of Jamaica’s limited conch resources The duty facilitate the sustainable development of the fisheries sector Story Highlights A levy of US$1 has been imposed on each pound of conch exported during the 2013 conch season.The House of Representatives, on Tuesday, July 23, approved the Conch (Export Levy) (Rate of Levy) Order Resolution, 2013, to facilitate the move. The Resolution was brought by Minister of Agriculture and Fisheries, Hon. Roger Clarke.The law requires that for each conch season, the rate prescribed by the Minister must be subject to affirmative resolution in the House of Representatives.The Conch (Export Levy) Act imposes a duty on the export of conch, to facilitate the sustainable management and development of the fisheries sector.The Act, which was passed in 2009, is used in part to offset the cost of implementing programmes for monitoring, control, surveillance and enforcement in relation to Jamaica’s limited conch resources. These programmes are expected to reduce illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing.
zoomIllustration; Source: Pixabay under CC0 Creative Commons license Greek ship owner and operator DryShips has appointed financial and legal advisors to help its board members consider George Economou’s non-binding takeover proposal.Namely, the company has retained Evercore as its financial advisor and Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP as its legal advisor.The advisors will, together with the special committee of the company’s board of directors, evaluate the proposal made by SPII Holdings, an entity controlled by the company’s Chairman and Chief Executive Officer.The special committee, comprised of the following independent and disinterested directors: George Kokkodis (Chair), Andreas Argyropoulos and George Demathas, is considering the proposal and no decisions have been made with respect to the its response.“There can be no assurance that any definitive agreement will be finalized and executed or that the Proposal or any other transaction will be approved or consummated,” DryShips said.If undertaken, the transaction would see DryShips merge into a subsidiary of SPII Holdings.
The Electoral Boundaries Commission released its final report, today, Sept. 25. Commission members were appointed at the end of December 2011, to establish not more than 52 seats that would allow each voter in the province to enjoy the same voting power, to the greatest extent possible. The commission was asked that all constituencies fall within 25 per cent of the average number of electors. The commission submitted the report to the attorney general on Monday and to the clerk of the House this morning. The commission was also asked to address concerns about the size of geographic areas, community history and interests, and linguistic and cultural diversity, noting the Acadian and African-Nova Scotian populations. A wide range of views about electoral boundaries were expressed to the commission through two rounds of public meetings, and by a large number of e-mails, letters and telephone calls. Nova Scotians demonstrated, quite convincingly, that this issue was important to them. “This final report completes the third review of Nova Scotia’s electoral boundaries since 1992,” said commission chair Teresa MacNeil. “Changes in population call for shifts in legislative representation to achieve relative voting parity in light of sometimes conflicting public views and interests.” The final report proposes: While the commission was not bound by county or municipal boundaries in redistribution, these have been used wherever possible. The commission accommodated existing polling districts and used land features such as highways and water bodies that provide natural and workable separation of population areas. Despite the challenges posed by Nova Scotia’s geography and population distribution, all of the province’s geographic regions fall within 15 per cent from equal electoral population. Elector populations in 31 constituencies fall within 15 per cent of the average and 22 constituencies fall within 10 per cent. The commission sincerely thanks all who took the time to participate in this important democratic exercise. To read the report online, go to nselectoralboundaries.ca/publications/ . there should be 51 members in the House of Assembly one constituency should be removed from Cape Breton and two from mainland Nova Scotia two new constituencies are recommended for the Halifax area boundary adjustments in the remaining constituencies are also guided by the goal of relative voter parity
NEW YORK, N.Y. – Newsmax has hired a former Fox News Channel executive to run its television operation, a sign that the media company is looking to become more competitive with the network that is the overwhelming favourite of conservative viewers.Michael Clemente, appointed CEO of NewsmaxTV on Monday, once ran Fox’s news operation before losing a power struggle and leaving in 2016. Previously, he worked for 27 years at ABC News.Chris Ruddy, who runs Newsmax Media, says the company has worked on building distribution for its television outlet and now wants to concentrate on programming.For the first time this past weekend, Newsmax aired a special “No Spin News” commentary program from former Fox star Bill O’Reilly. But Ruddy said there are currently no discussions about making it a permanent show.
Canberra: Australia’s prime minister on Sunday suggested an anti-Muslim senator should be charged after he slapped a teen who cracked a raw egg over the legislator’s head.Sen Fraser Anning has been widely condemned for blaming Muslim immigration for racist attacks on two New Zealand mosques that claimed at least 50 lives. Will Connolly, the 17-year-old boy who egged Anning, has become an online hero for the incident, which was captured on video. Prime Minister Scott Morrison on Sunday took Connolly’s side, telling reporters: “The full force of the law should be applied to Sen. Anning.” Police allege Connolly, who calls himself “Egg Boy” online, assaulted the senator with the egg. Anning “retaliated and struck the teen twice” before Connolly was dragged to the ground by Anning supporters, a police statement said. “The incident is being actively investigated by Victoria Police in its entirety,” the statement said, including Anning’s actions. Anning came under blistering criticism over tweets on Friday, including one that said, “Does anyone still dispute the link between Muslim immigration and violence?” “The real cause of the bloodshed on New Zealand streets today is the immigration program which allowed Muslim fanatics to migrate to New Zealand in the first place,” he said in a later statement. Anning has now been assigned a federal police security detail, a precaution usually reserved for the prime minister. New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern for the first time on Sunday joined the public condemnation of Anning. Asked by a journalist what she thought of Anning’s comments, she replied simply: “They’re a disgrace.” A GoFundMe page set up to raise 2,000 Australia dollars ( 1,400) to pay for Connolly’s “legal fees” and “more eggs” had exceeded AU 25,000 on Sunday. The site says most of the money will go to Christchurch victims. “Love the spunk of egg boy who puts his egg where we’d like it to be!” donor Val Lehmann-Monck posted.
Rabat – Moroccan radio stations are not the only ones to boycott Saad Lamjarred. The famous Tunisian radio station Mozaique FM has also decided to stop airing the Moroccan singer’s songs after he went back to jail over rape accusations.“This decision was decided following the verdict of the court of Aix-en-Provence to lock Saad Lamjarred for another case of sexual assault against a young French woman in a hotel in Saint-Tropez,” the station explained on its website. Lamjarred went back to jail Tuesday, September 18, following a decision by the Aix-en-Provence Court of Appeal in southern France reversing his release. The prosecutor’s office in Draguignan had appealed his release under judicial supervision.The Tunisian station’s decision follows some Moroccans similar choices. HitRadio and Radio 2M have both distanced themselves from Lamjarred. Moroccan station Chada FM has continued to air the pop star’s songs, despite his return to jail pending trial in the rape case.“We do not intend to exclude the musical productions of the Moroccan artist from the programming grid of the station because the case is not clarified yet and the French judiciary has not pronounced judgement, and assuming that the accused is innocent until he has been sentenced,” said Chada FM in a statement shared on Facebook.Moreover, the Moroccan station said it “encourages Moroccan art and music especially in the case where it concerns the younger generation.”The 33-year-old artist was arrested on Sunday, August 26, in Saint-Tropez in southeastern France after police received a new rape complaint from a young French seasonal worker. Lamjarred is still awaiting trial in a 2016 rape case in France.
Wheat for May advanced 1.5 cents at 4.6650 a bushel; May corn was up 4.75 cents at 3.7625 a bushel; May oats rose 6.25 cents at $2.8075 a bushel; while May soybeans gained 4.5 cents at $9.105 a bushel.Beef and pork were higher on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange. Apr. live cattle was up .33 cent at $1.2990 a pound; Mar. feeder cattle gained .52 cent at $1.4277 a pound; while Apr. lean hogs rose 4.5 cents at $.7832 a pound.The Associated Press
9 May 2011Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today underscored the need for Iran to continue negotiations with concerned countries over the status of its nuclear programme, telling the country’s President to also cooperate fully with the United Nations International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). In a meeting with Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, held in Istanbul, Turkey, on the sidelines of the UN Conference on Least Developed Countries (LDCs), Mr. Ban stressed the importance of Iran’s negotiations with the so-called E3+3 – China, France, Germany, Russia, the United Kingdom and the United States.He also highlighted the importance of Iran cooperating fully with the IAEA, according to an information note released by the Secretary-General’s spokesperson.Iran has repeatedly stated that its nuclear programme is for the peaceful purpose of providing energy, but many countries contend it is seeking to develop nuclear weapons and last year the Security Council imposed a fourth round of sanctions against it, citing the proliferation risks of its nuclear programme and Iran’s continued failure to cooperate with the IAEA. The issue has been of international concern since the discovery in 2003 that Iran had concealed its nuclear activities for 18 years in breach of its obligations under the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT).During their meeting today Mr. Ban also asked Mr. Ahmadinejad to cooperate with the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), including a potential visit by that office to Iran.In addition, the Secretary-General and the President discussed recent developments in the Middle East and North Africa, especially Libya, Syria, Yemen and Bahrain, as well on the importance of a positive outcome for the LDC conference.While in Istanbul Mr. Ban has held a series of bilateral meetings with key officials, and today he met with Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, Benin’s President Boni Yayi, Turkish President Abdullah Gül, Georgia’s Prime Minister Nikoloz Gilauri, African Union (AU) Commission Chairperson Jean Ping and Cypriot Foreign Minister Markos Kyprianou.
Papua New Guinea’s Parliament voted earlier this year to elect Peter O’Neill as Prime Minister after determining that the post was vacant when incumbent Sir Michael Somare spent five months abroad for medical treatment, according to media reports.The reports indicate that the country’s Supreme Court has since ruled that Parliament acted illegally, and that Sir Michael – who has returned to Papua New Guinea – should be reinstated.In a statement issued by his spokesperson, Mr. Ban called on all sides “to exercise maximum restraint and to avoid an escalation of the situation.”He added that he hoped the crisis would be “resolved soon in a peaceful manner in accordance with the constitution.” 13 December 2011Peace and SecuritySecretary-General Ban Ki-moon expressed concern today about mounting political tensions in Papua New Guinea, where two prominent politicians each say they are the Pacific country’s rightful leader.
National Freedom Front (NFF) leader and United People’s Freedom Alliance (UPFA) Parliamentarian Wimal Weerawansa today slammed President Maithripala Sirisena over some of his actions, including with regards to the opposition leader post. He said the President never took part in UPFA election rallies or attended press conferences in support of the UPFA ahead of election day. He insisted that the UPFA is also not part of the National Government and instead it is the Sri Lanka Freedom Party (SLFP) which has a deal with the United National Party (UNP).The UPFA member said that whatever President Sirisena has said is not part of the UPFA policy despite him being the UPFA chairman. Speaking in Parliament today, Weerawansa said that the President has continuously worked against the UPFA at the Parliamentary elections. Weerawansa also said that the UPFA had never agreed to make Tamil National Alliance (TNA) leader R. Sampanthan the opposition leader.He accused the President of working under a contract to make Sampanthan the opposition leader as the TNA had backed Sirisena at the January Presidential election. (Colombo Gazette)
In the village of Kapise, Mwanza district, some 100 kilometres south of Malawi’s capital, Lilongwe, registration teams from the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) recorded the arrival of 1,297 people – two thirds of them women and children – with over 900 people awaiting registration. Another 400 new arrivals have been reported in 16 villages located further south in the district of Chikwawa.The Mozambicans said they fled fighting between the opposition RENAMO and Government forces. Refugee women told a UNHCR protection officer how their homes were burned down with one grandmother left inside to die. They said Government forces were attacking villages believed to be harbouring opposition members. UNHCR has been unable to confirm the accuracy of these allegations, spokesperson Karin de Gruijl told reporters at a news briefing in Geneva. UNHCR is working with the Government to coordinate the response to assist the newly arrived refugees. The UN World Food Programme (WFP) was providing food and Doctors Without Borders (MSF) is already on the ground with a mobile clinic. Malaria is a major concern and the number of patients seen daily has increased from 70 to 250. With the looming fear of a cholera outbreak, MSF has been quick to drill two boreholes and are planning on drilling a third to improve the water supply, Ms. de Gruil added.She went on to say that the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF), is putting up temporary latrines and washrooms to avert health disasters, and has also provided two large tents where children can play and learn. The UN Population Fund (UNFPA) plans to work on maternal health. The Government of Malawi is considering reopening Luwani refugee camp, which previously hosted refugees from Mozambique during the civil war (1977 -1992), when over a million Mozambican refugees fled to neighbouring Malawi.
While the main focus of the Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village Golf Course was on 44-year-old Steve Stricker’s 10th PGA Tour victory, Rickie Fowler and Rory McIlroy, both 22 years old, were the center of attention for many spectators throughout the entire weekend in Dublin, Ohio. Both players finished the week under-par, and McIlroy finished in fifth place, five shots behind the champion, Stricker. “Yeah, when you’re five behind going into the last day, you know you’re going to have to do something pretty special,” McIlroy said. “I’m happy with how I played. I could have been a little bit better, but it’s been a good week.” Fowler, who was in the second-to-last group on Sunday at Muirfield in 2010, and finished in second place behind Justin Rose, finished this year at 4-under-par for the tournament. Fowler said he is in good shape heading into the U.S. Open, which begins June 13 at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md. “I’m hitting a lot of good shots,” Fowler said. “(I’m) hitting a lot of solid golf shots, driving the ball a lot better than I have been all year.” Youth was a theme that extended beyond Fowler and McIlroy — there were 34 players in their 20s, which accounts for nearly 29 percent of the field. Jack Nicklaus, Memorial host and record holder for the most major tournament wins, said the PGA Tour goes through cycles of good players, and that for awhile, Tiger Woods was the only player under 30 winning on a consistent basis. “We went a long time where Tiger was the only multiple victor on the Tour,” Nicklaus said. “All of a sudden, we got a rash of young player that have come along.” Nicklaus said the success of the younger players, such as Fowler and McIlroy, encourages young people to take up golf. “The young kids say ‘Hey, if they can do that, I can do that,’” Nicklaus said. Fred Couples, PGA Tour veteran and captain of the 2011 U.S. Presidents Cup team, said there are many young players making an impact on the tour this year. “There’s so many young players,” Couples said. “It used to be young players were in their late 20s, a good player who developed and then started to win,” Couples said. “Now you have … all these guys who are barely in their 20’s.” McIlroy had a share of the lead after Thursday’s round, shooting a 6-under 66. On Friday and Saturday, McIlroy struggled to repeat his first-round performance, shooting only 1-under par during the ensuing two rounds. Entering Sunday, McIlroy was five shots off the lead, but was unable to catch Stricker. McIlroy shot a 4-under 68 on Sunday to put his four-day total at 11-under-par. “When (Stricker) turned in 6-under and went to 18-under par, what do you do?,” McIlroy said. “You’re just trying to play as best you can and finish as high up on the leaderboard as possible.”
Connor Fulton, 2017 shooting guard from Alta High School (Utah), announced he will join Chris Holtmann at Ohio State after committing to play for the coach at Butler. pic.twitter.com/RppyUZiJ8C— Connor Fulton (@ConnorFulton2) July 20, 2017Fulton was originally scheduled to walk on at Butler, but will follow Holtmann to Columbus and play for the Buckeyes without a scholarship as a preferred walk-on.Ohio State currently has 10 players on scholarship, including former walk-on junior guard Joey Lane. The Buckeyes added graduate transfer Andrew Dakich from Michigan earlier this week, according to a report from ESPN’s Jeff Goodman, which will leave Holtmann with two scholarship spots available for the 2017-18 season assuming Dakich will be given a scholarship.
The man jewellery and chest hair combo so beloved by the likes of Tom Jones and Tom Selleck now seems to have been taken up with enthusiasm by a younger generation. Perhaps it’s all the fault of Aiden Turner’s shirtless appearance in Poldark. Yes, the medallion is back. Fashion writers say the return… When Keira Knightley’s husband James Righton was photographed with her at the Paris Opera Ballet Gala it confirmed long-standing fears about the ever-turning wheel of fashion. Righton, the former member of the Klaxons who was once more likely to be seen clad in skinny jeans and a blue lamé shirt, is the latest to undo one button too many and reveal a glint of jewellery overlaying a hirsute chest.–– ADVERTISEMENT ––
Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedBrazil’s former richest man Eike Batista sent to prisonJanuary 31, 2017In “Regional”Caribbean News Round-upOctober 1, 2015In “Regional”Brazil ex-president arrested in corruption probeMarch 21, 2019In “Crime” Two men have been arrested over the murder of Marielle Franco, an outspoken black councillor in the Brazilian city of Rio de Janeiro.The arrests come almost a year after Franco and her driver were shot dead, an incident which caused mass protests.Franco had been highly critical of the deployment of federal security forces to Rio’s poor neighbourhoods. Police said both suspects were former members of the military police force.Murdered, Marielle FrancoFranco was returning from an event encouraging black women’s empowerment in central Rio on 14 March 2018 when a car drew alongside hers and nine shots rang out.She was shot four times in the head, and three bullets hit her driver, Anderson Gomes. Ms Franco’s press officer, who was sitting in the back seat of the car, was injured.One of the suspects arrested on Tuesday is accused of being the gunman, the other of being the driver.The killing shocked Brazilians, who took to the streets of Rio de Janeiro and other cities en masse in protest.With the anniversary of her murder approaching, there was also criticism of the fact that no-one had been brought to justice for her murder. (BBC)
EIRCOM ADDED 21,000 customers in the final six months of last year and now have 1,079,000 customers across their two mobile netowrks.The Eircom group operate both eMobile and Meteor and say that the two companies brought in €180 million in the six months to the end of December.Between the two companies Eircom now has more mobile customers than they do landline customers, with 878,000 clients for fixed line services.In total, revenue at the telecommunications firm was €657 million for the final six months of 2013, a decrease of 7 per cent compared to 2012.Fixed line revenue for the six month was €499 million and was down by 10 per cent with the mobile segment having a total revenue of €180 million during the same period.As part of a trading update released this morning, Eircom CEO Herb Hribar has also provided details of the company’s broadband provision:The rollout of high speed fibre broadband continued during the quarter, and at the end of December 2013 the fibre footprint had passed 700,000 homes and businesses and we are now on track to pass 1,000,000 premises by summer 2014.“The profitability of the mobile business continues to improve, despite significant commercial spend in the run up to the Christmas period.”“We also continue to roll out our 4G network, which now covers 40% of the population in Ireland,” he added.Read: 830 jobs to go at Eircom >Read: Revenue and costs down, but earnings stabilise at Eircom >
CHANGES IN THE structure of local government are being implemented from today, which includes a reduction in the number of local authorities from 114 to 31.This reform involves the merger of Limerick city and county councils, Waterford city and county councils and north and south Tipperary county councils, as well as the dissolution of 80 town councils and other subsidiary bodies. The local elections saw 949 seats up for grabs across the country, down from 1,627.Speaking about the reforms, Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government, Phil Hogan, said the changes will “eliminate duplication by ensuring more streamlined structures and the resources that were previously absorbed by these structures and processes will now be freed-up to improve front-line services and to enhance the quality of life in local communities”.His department said the replacement of the 80 town councils by municipal districts, in particular, will end “a weak and unbalanced version of local democracy in which 46 per cent of all councillors represented only 14 per cent of the population and dealt with only seven per cent of local government activity”.Anomalies such as residents inside town boundaries having two votes while the environs population, much larger in some cases, was not served by the town council, will now cease.Councils As part of the changes, local government will now have a clearer role in economic development, particularly in the area of small businesses. From this Friday, new governance arrangements, also coming into effect from the first meetings of local authorities, will give councils greater policy development powers.While Hogan was welcoming of the reform, he said this was just the beginning and he would be introducing further changes over the course of the year.“The shortcomings in our current system of local government have built up over a long period and it would be unrealistic to think that this situation can be turned around instantly,” he said. “Previous failed reform proposals made that very mistake.”Read: Who is your new local councillor? Here’s a list of everyone elected>Read: Local authorities haven’t collected over €355 million owed to them>
‘It’s inevitable a leader will make mistakes and create the conditions for opportunistic incumbents’ Enda Kenny’s future as Fine Gael leader will be top of the media agenda this week, writes Jason O’Sullivan. Mar 20th 2017, 6:30 AM 32 Comments 106 Views Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Short URL http://jrnl.ie/3288938 Share99 Tweet Email Jason O’Sullivan THE TENTATIVE QUESTION of Taoiseach Enda Kenny’s future as Fine Gael leader will be top of the media agenda following his return from the US.It was expected that the much anticipated announcement at Fine Gael parliamentary party in February was the ideal opportunity to clarify his position. He chose however to instead bide some time by stating he would conclusively deal with his future as party leader after St Patrick’s Day.Although the story has somewhat waned in recent weeks, it has not dampened speculation nor softened calls for a change of leadership. Some in the party may have been surprised by his fighting spirit, while others would have expected nothing less from a leader who has thwarted many a political coup.It has also been reported of late that he could be dramatically appointed as the president of the European Council in early May, a role he was mooted for in the past.Leadership contest in full swingDespite such stalling tactics or new role speculations, there is little doubt that the official leadership contest between the main contenders, Minister Simon Coveney and Minister Leo Varadkar is in full swing, albeit in a more covert manner behind closed party doors.One can assume both are demonstrating the necessary level of guile and charm to influence their party colleagues in their pursuit for the top prize.In tandem, political commentators and the general public alike will muse over Kenny’s leadership position in the coming week. In contemplation for a likely stepping down, many will begin the ranking of his perceived or actual successes and failures throughout his time at the top.Much conjecture of this type will depend largely on one’s political leaning or personal feelings towards the man himself as leadership with its inherent characteristics are subjective in their nature. This can at times place unrealistic expectations on a leader and hastily circumvent their reign.Defining ‘leadership’While leadership can prove difficult to define, the term embodies well recognised attributes. For instance, a leader is expected to lead by example, inspire others to action, understand the people and their needs, demonstrate integrity and resolve in equal measure, be diplomatic and charming, whilst being strategic and measured and so on.Leadership and its requirements can also vary greatly between different professions and disciplines, from sport to politics or from the corporate to voluntary sector.One common underlying theme that binds most of those in positions of leadership, is that once weakness or vulnerability is identified, or credibility and trust is lost, such positions of power often become untenable.Modern leaders it’s fair to say are under far more scrutiny than their predecessors, particularly those in political power. The constant introspection of every soundbite or political manoeuvre through both traditional and social media platforms leaves little space for error or ill judgement.Furthermore, with the growth of so called “fake news” in today’s media, political leaders are susceptible to targeted reputational damage through such unscrupulous propaganda campaigns.Enda Kenny’s handling of whistleblower crisisIn the case of Taoiseach Enda Kenny however, his expected leadership downfall will be largely attributed to his own misguided handling of the whistleblower crisis last month, to which some contributory blame may also lay with his closest advisors.One will recall that his well-publicised “mea culpa” contritely delivered in the Dáil in February, centred on his inaccurate relaying of information during an interview with RTÉ radio about a past meeting with Minister for Children Katherine Zappone before her meeting Sergeant Maurice McCabe.Such admissions signalled the green light for this current leadership challenge.For such a seasoned politician, it must be difficult for him and his team to comprehend the calamity of such erroneous actions, which were quite innocuous in the grander scheme of things. Their potent execution however, has ultimately compromised his leadership tenure.Given the speed the story was developing at the time of the radio interview coupled with the increasing pressure being placed on both Garda Commissioner Nóirín O’Sullivan and Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald, it now appears particularly nonsensical as to why he took such a risky course of action in communicating such untruths to the media, ones that were easily discredited by Zappone herself.With time, every leader makes mistakesThere is little doubt that An Taoiseach has demonstrated significant levels of leadership throughout his time in office. He could not have become leader of his party in the first instance nor subsequently his country for two unprecedented consecutive terms for Fine Gael, if he didn’t possess certain undeniable leadership qualities as were then valued.With the passage of time, however, it’s inevitable a leader will make mistakes and in doing so, devalue their own reputational currency amongst their supporters and create the appropriate catalytic conditions for opportunistic incumbents.What’s clear from these type of leadership debacles both past and present, is that any style of leadership, from democratic to dictatorial and everything in between, requires continued challenge and scrutiny whether it be on the field of play, in the corporate boardroom or Dáil chambers.To do otherwise would seriously undermine the very concept of positive and powerful leadership and instead create a forum for societal inertia.Jason O’ Sullivan is a Solicitor and Public Affairs Consultant at JOS Solicitors.‘Syrians are increasingly likely to opt for a strongman like Assad, capable of bringing stability’>Zoo deaths: ‘In the wild, gorillas don’t eat their own vomit and pull out their hair in frustration’> Solicitor By Jason O’Sullivan Monday 20 Mar 2017, 6:30 AM
Toy Tuesday: The Best ‘South Park’ ToysThe New Lego UCS Imperial Star Destroyer Is Nearly Four Feet Long Stay on target Capcom’s Biohazard series – known here in the West as Resident Evil – was a major factor in establishing their dominance in the PlayStation 1 era, and the franchise has continued to evolve and push the genre of survival horror forward in the two-plus decades of its existence. And with success comes merchandise. Resident Evil toys are a must for any horror head’s desk or display shelf, and here’s our guide to the absolute best of the lot.NECA Chris Redfield Action FigureStanding eleven inches tall, this extremely detailed figure of one of the Resident Evil franchise’s most durable protagonists is a really slick buy. Chris Redfield was the hero of the first game and has evolved in some interesting ways over the years, gaining a significant amount of muscle mass and upgrading his weaponry. He’s also made the jump over to the fighting game world with appearances in two Marvel vs. Capcom games. There are so many interesting choices made by the sculptor in this figure, from adding kneepads to hide joints to ventilation in his underarms, that you could spend a day just admiring it. Throw in multiple guns, workable holsters and more and you’ve got a must-buy.Get it at Amazon.comResident Evil Deck Building GameIf you’ve played through all of the Resident Evil games and still crave more zombie-blasting tactical survival horror, why not make some space on your game shelf for the deck-building card game? This well-reviewed game for 2-4 players is tightly constructed, with 30 minute playtimes giving you just enough strategic opportunities without wearing out its welcome, and it’s deeply replayable even before getting into the expansions. Multiple playable characters, starting loadouts and scenarios will give your gaming crew lots to do.Get it at Amazon.comT-Virus / G-Vaccine Prop ReplicaIt all comes down to this in the Resident Evil universe — the luminescent blue T-Virus that transforms normal humans (and other animals) into mindless zombies. Developed for the military as a way to create soldiers that felt no pain and would fight mindlessly, it was accidentally released in Raccoon City and started the whole mess off. These display tubes are each six inches high and come in a tin window box if you want extra security for your potentially world-ending souvenirs. Heck, if you accidentally crack the virus open you have the vaccine right there.Get it at Amazon.comHot Toys Chainsaw Ganado FigurePeople were shocked when Resident Evil 4 upended the series’ conventions in numerous ways, from changing the perspective to make combat more satisfying to replacing the traditional zombies with the Ganados, hosts of a parasite native to Spain that are a little more in control of themselves but still want to murder outsiders and eat rotting flesh. The most notable type of them was the one that came at you with chainsaws, desperate to hack you into chunks and recognizable by the iconic burlap sack on his head. This nice 1/6 scale figure is super poseable and really scary.Get it at Amazon.comHot Toys Ada Wong Masterpiece FigurePlayers first met the mysterious Ada Wong in Resident Evil 2, sent in to Raccoon City by a rival corporation to raid the Umbrella lab and secure a sample of the G-virus, romancing Leon Kennedy and eventually giving him the rocket launcher he uses to defeat the Tyrant. She’d show up in multiple other games, being playable in parts of Resident Evil 4 and Resident Evil 6. This is a seriously beautiful figure made with the keenest attention to detail, standing nearly a foot tall and coming with her iconic crossbow, five other weapons, multiple hands and other accessories.Get it at Amazon.comResident Evil Nemesis Funko PopOne of the most iconic villains in the entire series is the massive Nemesis, first seen in the third game. As opposed to the mindless zombies that characterize the series, Nemesis has a level of intelligence and can’t be flummoxed in the usual ways, pursuing the player throughout the game with his massive rocket launcher and extendable tentacles. The Funko Pop version of the massive stalker has a pretty hilarious-looking head sculpt that does its best to make the stitched-together head of the Nemesis look cute. Does it completely succeed? No, but A for effort.Get it at Amazon.comHot Toys Movie Masterpiece AliceThe Resident Evil movies exist as a sort of alternate universe counterpart to the games, sharing some characters and organizations but doing their own things as well. The most notable difference is the protagonist – Milla Jovovich’s Alice is a security consultant for the Umbrella Corporation who betrays them to expose their experiments and gets caught up in the zombie-killing mayhem and awful monsters. This figure from Hot Toys’ excellent Movie Masterpiece series is a photorealistic reproduction of the actress with real fabric clothes, multiple hairstyles, weapons and more.Get it at Amazon.comHot Toys Jill Valentine FigureThe introduction of a female lead character in the first game of the series made Resident Evil that much more popular, and Jill has undergone quite a narrative arc over the course of the series, starting out as a novice member of STARS and a master of unlocking and eventually captured by Umbrella and used as a test subject for biological experimentation, transformed into a mind-controlled terrorist with deadly hand-to-hand capabilities. This really nice figure depicts Jill in better days, with 30 points of articulation and multiple weapons and hands.Get it at Amazon.comResident Evil Zombie Dog StatueThe second game in the series moved us outside of the Umbrella mansion and into the streets of Raccoon City, introducing new foes beyond the transformed humans. One of the scariest moments in Resident Evil 2 comes when a zombie dog bursts through a window at you unexpectedly, requiring you to act fast to take it down. Bring that terror to your toy shelf with this intricately detailed 1:6 scale Doberman Pinscher infected with the T-virus to become a real pain in the ass. Constructed from polystone, it comes with a city street base.Get it at Amazon.comResident Evil Tyrant FigureZombies are scary enough, but when Shinji Mikami needed a boss character for the first Resident Evil game, he had to kick things up a notch. Enter the Tyrant, the apotheosis of Umbrella’s biological warfare experiments to create a humanoid killing machine who couldn’t be stopped. The Tyrant is a brutal and violent creature motivated only by carnage, and this incredibly detailed statue depicts one crawling out of a shattered growth chamber ready to wreak havoc on your toy collection.Get it at Amazon.comChris Redfield NendoroidIf you’re looking for something a bit cuter, Good Smile has made a Chris Redfield in their popular “Nendoroid” line of big-headed chibi action figures. Although they look stumpy, they come with a good amount of articulation and accessories, and Chris is no different. The zombie fighter has his trusty rocket launcher with a separate effect piece for firing as well as multiple faceplates with alternate expressions. He’s ready to fight off the undead in different poses.Get it at Amazon.comMore on Geek.com:11 Stealthiest Ninja Toys11 Coolest ‘Iron Man’ Toys11 Most Radioactive ‘Fallout’ Toys