Germany Promises Support to Post Ebola Recovery Plan

first_imgThe Federal Republic of Germany has committed to provide more support to Liberia, including the attraction of private investments that will help the country in its post Ebola recovery efforts.German Federal Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development, Dr. Gerd Muller, who led a 30-member German delegation to Liberia, made the commitment during a press briefing jointly held with Foreign Minister Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan over the weekend at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Capitol Hill.  The Dr. Muller-led delegation, which was co-led by the German Minister of Health, Herr Hermann Groehe, was in the country primarily to assess the impact of German contribution to the Government of Liberia’s fight against Ebola and to discuss the possibilities for strengthening German-Liberian financial and technical cooperation.”As I told the President, this country must not fall into depression now or after the Ebola crisis; that is why we need to make considerable investment in infrastructure and in the agricultural sector… That is why we have taken the decision to double our support in the coming years,” the German Minister for Economic Cooperation and Development said through an interpreter.Dr. Muller, who emphasized that private investment is paramount to the development of any nation, disclosed that his government will lobby with private sector actors in Germany to attract private investments to Liberia.Dr. Muller and delegation, which also included two members of the German Parliament, met and held talks with President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf prior to the stakeout and indicated that as a result of the excellent relationship subsisting between President Sirleaf and German Chancellor Angela Merkel, two important development issues have been included on the agenda of the forthcoming Group of Seven (G7) Conference.The two issues, said Dr. Muller, are creating a fair value chain aimed at producing a fair standard of production in developing countries and empowering women through technical vocational education.Dr. Muller urged Liberians to continue the fight against corruption by engaging in efficient governance and to further strengthen the rule of law, adding, “These are the bases and required bureaucracy which attract private investment.”He also gave assurance that the German government will solidify its diplomatic and bilateral ties with Liberia by increasing support to the country’s energy, agriculture and education sectors.The 30-member German team also included two members of the German Parliament and several German journalists and civil society actors.Liberian Foreign Minister Ngafuan, on behalf of President Sirleaf and the Government and People of Liberia, conveyed profound gratitude to German Chancellor Angela Merkel and the Government and people of Germany for their unswerving support to Liberia both during good and bad times.”We in Liberia are not only grateful that officials of the German Government could visit Liberia, but also we take positive note of the size and composition of the delegation, which speaks volumes about the strength of the bilateral relations between our two countries and Germany’s firm commitment to being a stronger partner with our country in good as well as in bad times.”The 30-member German delegation is the largest to visit Liberia in recent times.A foreign Ministry release said Minister Ngafuan praised the German Government and people for their  demonstration of strong solidarity with the Liberian Government during and after the Liberia civil war and in particular during the critical time of the Ebola Virus pandemic.”Not only did the Government of Germany keep its diplomatic mission operational throughout and including the peak of the pandemic, but we were honored to have been visited in September 2014 by Ambassador George Wilfried Schmidt, Regional Director for Sub-Saharan Africa and the Sahel and by Mr.Walter J. Lindner, German Ebola Coordinator to West Africa in October 2014. It is good to have Ambassador Lindner, back again.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Suspended sentence for Arranmore man in 11-year-old assault case

first_imgA 46-year-old Arranmore man has been given a six-month suspended sentence after being convicted of assault causing harm in an incident on the island eleven years ago.Kieran Boyle of Leabgarrow, Arranmore, was before Letterkenny Circuit Court on a charge of assaulting Hugh O’Donnell on January 1, 2006. Boyle has been working in England for some years now and had been due before the court in 2009, when he failed to appear. A bench warrant was subsequently issues and he was before the court in May, 2017.O’Donnell, who is now 55, is also living in England and traveled back to be present in court, where he provided a victim impact statement.Garda McGowan said that on January 2 2006, Hugh O’Donnell made a complaint of an assault that had happened on the morning of January 1, 2006.Boyle and O’Donnell had been attending a disco on the island when ‘some kind of a row happened between them on the premises.’ After the incident, Boyle left the disco but O’Donnell remained.Later that night, as Boyle overtook O’Donnell’s vehicle. The men stopped their vehicles, got out and a scuffle ensued.A statement was read where O’Donnell described the incident: “He jumped out of the car and he went for me. He took a swing at me with his right fist. As he swung, I lost my footing and Kieran Boyle continued kicking me in the face. He was saying: ‘You fucking bastard, you pervert – that’s all you are.’”O’Donnell went to the doctor to be examined and was transferred to Letterkenny General Hospital, where he was found to have sustained a broken nose, a broken cheekbone and a broken eye socket.Boyle made a statement under caution, in which he said he was in John Boyle’s Disco in Leabgarrow and had been drinking Millar, Jack Daniels & Coke.Boyle claimed that he went to shake the hand of O’Donnell when a scuffle broke out in the disco.“All I can remember is us shoving one another,” he said. “I don’t know what time it was. It was getting bright when I left the disco and started driving back to Leabgarrow.“I turned the car and was heading to have the craic with a friend. I saw a dark coloured keep coming behind me. It came up at speed as if it was going to ram my car. I stopped the car in the middle of the road and got out. The driver of the keep got out and the two of us started throwing punches.“We fell on the side of the road, I got Hugh O’Donnell to the ground and punched him several times. I don’t believe that I kicked Hugh O’Donnell, but I gave him a few thumps. I got up from him and drove to my sister’s house to get cleared up.”Boyle, who has no previous convictions, was working in England for long periods of time and occasionally came home to visit with his family on Arranmore.Mr O’Donnell, in his victim impact statement, said that Boyle ‘showed no remorse for his actions’. He said: “To this day I feel intimidated by Kieran Boyle whenever we meet. I suffered depression after this brutal attack.“For two years, I had great difficulty sleeping and I had flashbacks in relation to the attack. I didn’t recover from the physical damage to my face for six months.“I just wish to have matter resolved and to try to get on with my life.”Garda McGowan said that he felt it would be ‘the best case scenario’ if the two men avoided each other.Barrister Kelda Doherty, representing Mr Boyle, said: “Mr O’Donnell entered into a relationship with the ex-partner of the defendant. It might have magnified or exacerbated any apparent feeling. He didn’t set out to cause violence.“He did seek to extend a hand in a bid to reconcile any differences. Mr O’Donnell refused to shake his hand. Regrettably the defendant responded in an inexcusable manner and a melee ensued. Drink had been taken and matters took an opportunistic turn. Emotions got the better of him and emotions overrode his senses. He showed a complete lack of self-control.“This was out of character for the defendant. This has caused the defendant a lot of embarrassment and the matter has been hanging over him for 11 years.”Boyle, who has a daughter on Arranmore, works shifts as a miner in London and works 12 days in-a-row on his shift.In the witness box, Boyle turned to O’Donnell to apologise, saying: “I’m sorry for what happened between us. I wish I could turn back time. I’m very sorry for what happened.”Judge John O’Hagan, noting that the case was historic in that it occurred in 2006, said: “There isn’t good feeling between these two men.“The island is very community orientated and relationships are closely interlinked. When trouble or bad feeling breaks out, it can be unpleasant simply because families all know each other intimately. Even though Mr Boyle has been out of the island for some time now, there is still a bit of tension.“I have no doubt that he wants to get it out of the way but I can’t brush it under the carpet. it is something that will live with him for rest of days. When drink is in sense is out, or indeed emotions.”Judge O’Hagan gave Boyle a six-month suspended sentence and fined him €500 on entering a bond of €100 of his own to keep the peace for 12 months.Suspended sentence for Arranmore man in 11-year-old assault case was last modified: June 28th, 2017 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Arranmore IslandBarrister Kelda DohertyHugh O’DonnellJUdge John O’HaganKieran BoyleLetterkenny Circuit Courtlast_img read more

Vijender Kumar’s family watches his match with prayers and cheers

first_imgLosing sleep and watching late-night football matches is a common trend among the upper middle class families in urban areas. But in Kaluwas, a tiny village near Bhiwani, Haryana, it’s the men’s boxing competition at the London Olympics which keeps people awake till the wee hours.They have a good reason to do that as local boy and Olympic medallist Vijender Kumar is fighting for his second medal at the ExCel Arena in London.Vijender was scheduled to fight Terrell Gausha of the United States in his pre-quarterfinal bout on Thursday and the scene at the boxer’s residence in Kaluwas was no less than that at a packed indoor stadium. Vijender’s courtyard might not have much space, but every inch was filled by eager family members and villagers who gathered to watch Vijender in action.The bout was scheduled at 2:15 am but the villagers showed childlike enthusiasm. The village is dogged by inconsistent power supply, but to make sure that no one misses the action, the family had a television set in the courtyard attached to a heavy-load generator.Vijender’s family holds special prayers before his bouts and Thursday was no exception. Vijender’s father Mahipal Singh has a superstition that his son will lose if he watches him live on television. So, he prays in seclusion at a temple in his ancestral farm. He religiously followed this routine on Thursday as well.As Doordarshan tuned in to the boxing competition in the 60kg category, the attention of viewers shifted to the television. The eager crowd makes comments about the competitors. Around 25 of the villagers are boxers of international repute and their opinions were right most of the time.advertisementAfter that Vijender’s bout started and each of his punches drew huge applause from the villagers. In contrast, every punch of Gausha drew oohs and aahs.Vijender’s confident face gave the villagers the impression that Vijender would win. He stepped up his game in the third and deciding round but Gausha too scored on counter punches.Vijender’s win triggered an impromptu dance among the villagers lasting five minutes.last_img read more