ULAA Calls for National Day of Anger

first_imgThe Union of Liberian Associations in the Americas (ULAA) has called for a national day of anger against reports of massive corruption among key past and current officials of the government of Liberia.“ULAA will consult with its membership and partners, civil society groups, religious, political, and other interest groups both at home and in the Diaspora to organize a National Day of ANGER in order for Liberians from across the globe and at home to simultaneously stage a peaceful opposition to the promotion and accommodation of corruption by the Government of Liberia,” ULAA’s statement signed by Arthur Weah Doe National General Secretary, stated in a press release.Global Witness, an international watchdog on bad business practices, revealed what appears to be a pay to play scheme of bribery to key lawmakers and government officials to weaken the nation’s laws and award the country’s natural resources to a shady British mining firm, Sable International, said the release. That this massive corruption was done so cavalierly in wanton disregard to the interest of the Liberian people constitutes the tragedy that has befallen “our country, and further explains why the people have not benefited from concessions and other agreements valued at over $16 billion in a small country like Liberia,” according to a press release issued by ULAA.ULAA finds it unconscionable that individuals in positions of public trust will so easily betray that trust and form an alliance with a foreign business entity in an effort to surrender the country‘s resources to that entity. It is even more troubling as the report indicates that the Speaker of the National Legislature and other key officials of government converted their official positions to that of “consultants” for this foreign firm seeking to do business in Liberia, said the press release. ULAA acknowledges that corruption remains one of the major challenges facing the country, but declares that this very extreme and dangerous form of corruption, which has been the hallmark of this government, is unprecedented in the history of the country.Accordingly, ULAA hereby places the government of Liberia on notice that enough is enough. Enough is enough when hospitals lack basic diagnostic and other essential equipment while corruption walks the corridors of power. Enough is enough when health workers, ordinary police officers, teachers, and firefighters are poorly paid, and many primary students in different grade levels are crammed in a single classroom, while government officials are involved in ill-gotten wealth. Enough is enough when schools, hospitals, roads, and bridges are either non-existent or in serious disrepair while the national budget is rigged to pay the salaries and benefits of the top one percent of high government officials, most of whom are very corrupt, the release continued.It further stated, enough is enough when Liberians are dying from curable diseases while key government officials and law makers formed phantom companies to siphon money from the public coffers for their personal benefit while at the same time seeking medical treatments abroad.Meanwhile ULAA views the reaction of the government of Liberia to this damaging report by setting up an investigative committee as nothing more than a publicity stunt intended to play to international theater. Everyone familiar with how this government has handled high level corruption incidents in the past and now knows fully well that this so-called committee will produce nothing of national significance, as evidenced by the appointment of an individual with a colorful background as its head. Finally, ULAA is calling on all Liberians not to despair at this point in the fight against corruption and the flagrant abuse of public office that has now become routine in our land. This is an existential fight for our motherland, and we must rise up to the challenge. Accordingly, ULAA has decided to lead this charge by adopting the following actions in its efforts to mobilize public opinions and escalate the fight against corruption:“Henceforth, ULAA as a matter of policy will no longer invite or share platform with any official of the Liberian government who is implicated in corrupt practices either by the General Auditing Commission, the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission, or other credible investigative bodies until their names are fully cleared of any wrong doing. ULAA will encourage other Diaspora organizations to adopt this policy.“ULAA is currently examining the legal ramifications of leading a direct protest at the homes and schools of children of government officials who have families in the United States that are implicated in corrupt practices either by the General Auditing Commission or other credible investigating agencies.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

FIFA pledges ‘transparent’ 2026 World Cup bid

first_img0Shares0000FIFA’s President Gianni Infantino insists that world football’s governing body has “radically enhanced” the World Cup bidding process © AFP/File / JUAN MABROMATALAUSANNE, Switzerland, Oct 5 – FIFA has promised to deliver a “transparent” bidding process for the 2026 World Cup after the controversy surrounding the awarding of the 2018 and 2022 tournaments to Russia and Qatar.In a column to appear on Friday in the FIFA magazine, president Gianni Infantino insists that world football’s governing body has “radically enhanced the mechanisms for selecting the location of our showpiece event”. “The process is as objective and transparent as it can get,” he adds, with aspects such as the bid book content, candidature evaluation reports, votes by each member of the FIFA council, and the final decision of the FIFA congress to be closely monitored.“Every step of the bidding process will be open to public examination – and, for the first time, the process will be scrutinised by an independent audit company,” says Infantino.The successful bid will have to “formally commit to conducting their activities based on sustainable event management principles and to respecting international human rights and labour standards” laid out by the United Nations.The hosting decision for the 2018 and 2022 tournaments prompted investigations that exposed widespread graft within the global game in 2015 and led to the downfall of figures such as disgraced former FIFA president Sepp Blatter.The nomination process for the 2026 World Cup was suspended for almost a year following the corruption scandal before it was restarted in May 2016.A joint United States-Mexico-Canada bid is the favourite to host the 2026 tournament, with only one other country, Morocco, entering the bidding race.The 2026 World Cup will be the first to feature 48 nations with the competition set to expand from its current 32-team format.A final decision on who will host the event is expected to take place in May 2020.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today)last_img read more

This Chelsea star has the lowest rating of any regular Premier League starter this season

first_imgHis lacklustre defensive showings have also hindered his attacking approach, limiting his influence pressing forward. His average of 0.4 key passes per game is his lowest, while only 31% of Chelsea’s attacks are coming down his side of the pitch, a stark contrast to the left (39%). A labourious Ivanovic is not only faltering defensively, but failing to leave his mark on games in the final third, which is one of his strongest assets. Indeed, of outfielders to start every Premier League match this campaign, Ivanovic has the lowest WhoScored.com rating (6.56), with that figure far and away his lowest in the last seven league seasons. Given Blues boss Jose Mourinho isn’t short of options at full-back, it’s something of a miracle that the Serbia international is yet to be dropped. On the contrary, Ivanovic is one of two Chelsea players – along with Eden Hazard – to play every minute in England’s top tier this season.It’s got to the stage where opposition sides are specifically targeting him as a means of getting in at goal. The opening day of the season set the benchmark, where Jefferson Montero routinely exploited Ivanovic’s defensive deficiencies in Swansea’s 2-2 draw with Chelsea. The full-back struggled to contain the Swans wideman at Stamford Bridge and, since the stalemate, it’s been more of the same for the right-back. Opposition managers have clearly pinpointed Ivanovic as the weak link in the Chelsea backline, reinforced in that he’s being dribbled past an average of 1.4 times per game, that return its highest in the Premier League.Of course, he isn’t the only player who can be blamed for Chelsea’s lackadaisical start to the campaign. The entire Blues defence has been culpable of a series of errors that have seen them ship 17 league goals already this season; only Sunderland (18) have conceded more. Thibaut Courtois’ injury concerns have not helped matters either, but it would be unfair to place the blame squarely at Ivanovic’s feet. Branislav Ivanovic As such, Ivanovic has been forced into taking drastic measures in order to stem the flow of attacks down his side of the pitch. His average of 1.8 fouls per game is his joint highest average in the Premier League in the last seven seasons, while he already has 3 yellow cards to his name. One would not bet against him matching or bettering the 12 cautions he received in the 2010/11 season. Football statistics analysts WhoScored.com take a close look at a Chelsea star whose performances and consistent selection are mystifying Blues fans. Check out more Chelsea stats at WhoScored.com.There was a moment in the second half of Southampton’s 3-1 win over Chelsea at the weekend where one felt nothing but sorrow for Branislav Ivanovic. Having seconds earlier hooked a ball back into his own box the right-back was one-on-one with compatriot Dusan Tadic, yet was unable to rob the Saints star of possession. After being spun by the winger, Ivanovic fell to the floor and looked a defender bereft of confidence. The 31-year-old has started the season abysmally following a consistent campaign in the Blues backline last term.center_img The Serbian defender has hardly been offered the necessary protection from teammates, particularly those in midfield. Cesc Fabregas and Nemanja Matic’s performance levels have dropped significantly, the former especially guilty of shirking his defensive responsibilities. On two occasions this season alone, Fabregas has failed to track the opposition goalscorer, coming against Newcastle and Saints. The lack of work off the ball has indeed left Ivanovic isolated and with his advancing years; the defender is clearly struggling. 1 Mourinho has hinted that he is willing to drop his big name players in order to improve Chelsea’s fortunes, with Ivanovic surely at risk of losing his starting spot in the foreseeable future. Given Cesar Azpilicueta is a more than adequate stand in at right-back and summer arrival Baba Rahman is capable of coming into the side, the powerful Serb must be fearing for his place in the starting XI.For more stats on Branislav Ivanovic, click here to view his WhoScored.com player pagelast_img read more