Senate Favors LWSC Privatization

first_imgThe Senate yesterday voted 10 for, four against, and one abstention in favor of carrying on stringent reforms in the water supply and sanitation services sector controlled by the Liberia Water and Sewer Corporation (LWSC). The vote taken during that body’s 36th day sitting specifically called for the creation of an enabling environment through, inter alia, making of policies and enactment of legislations to attract private investment to the sector. The Senate’s decision was prompted by a report prepared by the Committees on Lands, Mines Energy, Natural Resources and Environment, and Public Corporations, in which they recommended to plenary requesting President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to consider fast tracking the privatization of key operational areas, such as the commercialization of the LWSC. The Chairmen of the two Committees, Senators Albert Chie and J. Gbleh-bo Brown, informed their colleagues that during the performance of their oversight responsibilities, they held meetings with the management of LWSC at the Capitol Building on May 9, and observed that the corporation needed serious attention. In their conclusion, the Committees reported that “the LWSC has been run inefficiently for many years and is in bad financial state; that it is unable to deliver about 60 percent of the bills to customers it claims to serve, while full collection of debt from bills is far-fetched.” The seven-page report also discussed that the LWSC has been operating mainly on bilateral and multilateral grants, and that even so, it has been able to meet only 25 percent of the water demands of the Monrovia area, let alone the other counties. “The LWSC spoke about plans for the government to obtain a loan of US$10 million to support the work of the corporation; with an inefficiently-run corporation, this loan and future loans and grants may be wasted efforts.”In the debate that followed the vote, four Senators voted against privatization, among them Cllrs. Varney Sherman and Joseph Nagbe. The two Senators, who are also lawyers, argued that communities like West Point and New Kru Town and other less fortunate communities will be victims of such a decision. But pro-privatization Senators, such as Bomi County Senator Morris G. Saytumah, opted for a quasi privatization of the corporation, and admonished his colleagues not to look at privatization as a monster, saying privatization comes with efficiency. For his part, Sinoe County Senator J. Milton Teahjay was critical of the lack of attention paid to counties outside Monrovia such as his county, which he boasted is one of the original three counties. The Sinoe lawmaker warned that he will adopt the method to filibuster whenever a loan for ratification lands at the Senate, which limits benefit to only Monrovia. Meanwhile, Senator Nagbe yesterday informed his colleagues that he was going to make use of the rules of the Senate that allow him to file a motion for reconsideration if so desired, not later than three sitting days.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Crime-fighting officers undergo crime mapping training

first_imgThe Citizen Security Strengthening Programme (CSSP) in collaboration with the Inter American Development Bank on Thursday opened a two-day training session in the use of Geographic Information System (GIS) technology for crime mapping.Valerie Grant, GIS consultant for the CSSP projectThe training is being done at the Guyana Police Forces Training Centre, Camp Street, Georgetown, and will deal specifically with the Geographic Information System which is a useful technology and science which allows persons to understand where criminal activities are being perpetuated and conduct predictable analysis to understand the strengths and hotspots.Valerie Grant, GIS consultant for the CSSP project, related that GIS also allows a person to look at historic and recent information so that they can do strategic analysis.She stated that within the next three months, ranks will be using these new skills along with the necessary infrastructure in terms of hardware and software in their crime-fighting strategies.Grant posited that this will ensure that data is moved within departments swiftly and alluded to the capacity building which ensures the right people are in the right places.This programme serves as a pilot and will be rolled out in other regions later in the year.Dr Clement Henry, Project Manager of the CSSP, highlighted that all CSSP’s activities’ basic goal is to reduce crime and violence across the country and this initiative will take them a step further in achieving this.Dr Henry iterated that it was always the intention of CSSP to maximise the use of technology in their crime-fighting mechanism.He added that this initiative will play a key role in the use of technology in improving the type of analysis in the development of strategies and policies in crime prevention.Further, IDB’s Representative, Dr Jason Wilks said his institution is commitment to State enhancement and lauded the Government’s effort in introducing the use of technology in its Citizen Security Strengthening Programme.He said the IDB and other stakeholders including the United Nations Development Programme are committed to supporting what is already being done in Guyana in this regard.He pointed out that the IDB even as they provide the technical assistance and resource funding for the development of institutions and the acquisition of software and hardware; training and capacity building is vital in ensuring the resources obtained will be put to full use in crime-fighting.He urged the officers to make full use of the training as the knowledge gained will not become outdated but will remain with them in years to come.Meanwhile, Superintendent Shivpersaud Bacchus expressed gratitude for the much-needed training as it will help to enhance the Forces’ capabilities against the difficulties it may experience daily as they execute analytical work in solving and preventing crime.last_img read more

DONEGAL MAN KILLED IN CRASH, WIFE SERIOUSLY INJURED

first_imgA CO Donegal man has been killed in a road traffic collision.The 62-year-old man who died in a horror crash near Sion Mills has been named locally as Patsy McCrory, originally from Upper Art, Castlefin.Mr McCrory’s wife and members of his family are understood to be among those receiving treatment for serious injuries sustained in yesterday morning’s collision. The accident happened shortly before 11.00am on the main Sion Mills to Victoria Bridge road and involved a Toyota Avensis car and a Suzuki Vitara jeep.Two women, one in her 50s and the other in her 20s, and two men, one aged in his 20s and the other in his 40s, are currently receiving treatment in Altnagelvin Hospital in Derry.One of the injured, initially described as critically ill, is now described as seriously ill and stable.The horror crash occurred less than two miles from last Friday’s three-car collision in which Alexander McEntee, a retired businessman, was killed. Mr McCrory had been living in Castlederg.There is widespread shock in Castlefin where his many relatives and friends were told of his death last night. DONEGAL MAN KILLED IN CRASH, WIFE SERIOUSLY INJURED was last modified: January 9th, 2014 by John2Share 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:A5castlefinfatalityroad crashlast_img read more