23 April 2014A new Centre of Excellence in Human Development has been established by the Department of Science and Technology to help address early child development challenges in South Africa.Michael Masutha, the Deputy Minister of Science and Technology, launched the new centre on Tuesday, which is to be co-hosted by the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) and the University of KwaZulu-Natal. It is one of five such centres approved by the department in the past month.The centres have been established to promote collaborative and interdisciplinary research among research-performing institutions, and to provide high-end skills development in priority research areas.Masutha said that early childhood development (ECD) had been declared by the Office of the President as a “national priority” in 2004. Since then, directives had been issued for municipalities to include ECD planning in their integrated development plans.The National Integrated Plan for ECD was published in 2005, and the Children’s Amendment Act passed in 2007, helping to strengthen the government’s commitment to providing children with a better start to life.“The centre will combine the multidisciplinary expertise of established scholars with dedicated research groups working on child development. The team’s diverse strengths will enable a better understanding of the challenges in respect of child development in South Africa, improve the country’s ability to address these challenges, and advocate for the most cost-effective interventions to give all children the best possible start in life,” he said.According to the SA Child Gauge report released by the University of Cape Town’s Children’s Institute, 58% of children in South Africa lived below the lower poverty line (R604 per month) in 2011. Current global trends indicate that by 2015 one in four children under the age five will suffer from stunted growth, a clear sign of malnutrition which affects children’s physical and cognitive development and capacity to learn.The World Bank says that up to 57% of young children in developing countries have no access to preschool. In sub-Saharan Africa the figure is 83% – and children living in the poorest households are up to 10 times less likely to attend early childhood education programmes than those living in the richest.Cheryl Potgieter, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and Head of the College of Humanities at University of KwaZulu-Natal, said the centre was in line with the millennium development goals and would “focus on human capacity, particularly economic participation and health, which will contribute significantly to enhancing and empowering the youth, and ultimately all South African citizens”.The research at the centre will help improve decision-makers’ understanding of the conditions, dynamics and the efficacy of these policies for people living in poverty.
Share Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest First, let me say that I get it.I understand that the farmers in the Lake Erie Watershed were listening to the science and doing what everyone told them. It was once common knowledge that phosphorus did not move in the soil and that reducing tillage was the answer to the algal woes of Lake Erie because phosphorus attached to the soil.Farmers did what they thought they were supposed to do. With less tillage reducing erosion, phosphorus could be applied when most convenient in the most convenient way. Lake Erie got better and the problem was solved. But it wasn’t.Unfortunately, the science used to develop the recommendations for those practices had not taken all of reality into consideration. With this compliant shift toward conservation, broadcast phosphorus in reduced tillage situations started to concentrate on the surface and not attach to soil particles. This led to issues with surface runoff of small amounts of very potent dissolved phosphorus after big rains. When broadcast in the fall and winter or early spring on bare soil before big rains, the problems were compounded.The result, even after doing what they had been told to do, left farmers squarely in the crosshairs of the public blame game when Lake Erie’s ugly algae problems again bloomed. Farmers were frustrated and felt they had done their part, but the public was not pleased and there was plenty of data to support agricultural blame.So, late last month I sat in a room at the National Museum of the Great Lakes in Toledo with numerous stern-faced urban/suburban/environmental journalists in formal dress for a visit from Hillary Clinton later that day. They sat and listened to the summary from OSU researcher Elizabeth Dayton clearly stating:Agricultural soil phosphorus levels are holding steady or trending downward in at least 80% of Ohio counties from 1993 through 2015.Soil nutrient testing is vital to determining the right amount and type of fertilizer needed for crops.Incorporating fertilizer into the soil through banding or injecting has the potential to reduce the concentration risk of phosphorus in runoff up to 90% under certain conditions.Tile drainage is an effective filtration system that can reduce soil erosion and prevent the loss of nutrients. In general, phosphorus concentration from tile runoff is less than in surface runoff.Current guidelines for phosphorus levels in soil established by Tri-State Fertilizer Recommendations appear to be on the right track.Nearly three-quarters of phosphorus in surface runoff is attached to and travels with eroded soil sediment, making erosion control a key to phosphorus runoff control.All of the journalists in that room heard this information, and maybe they even understood it. It is quite possible they know that farmers want to do what is right but also must balance the challenges of weather, logistics, economics, and countless other factors when making farm management decisions. They heard that farmers care about clean water, but do they get it? I’m not sure. And if the journalists do not get it, do you think the general public will?Agriculture I know you are trying to do what is right for the environment and for your farms. But in today’s ever increasing demand for accountability and traceability in all levels of our society, you not only have to do what is right but you also have to demonstrate that you are doing things right in a way people who do not get what you are doing can understand. And now, courtesy of big investments in terms of time, money, collaboration and research, there are some fairly concrete answers on what needs to happen in agriculture to address water quality.I get that: budgets are tight, time is limited, resources are stretched thin, prices are low, inputs are high, questions are numerous, trends are headed in the right direction, ag is not the only contributor, and there are plenty of “ifs” and “buts.” The general public and the stern-faced journalists, however, do not really seem to care. They care about clean water and I know you do too.The dry conditions in 2016 led to less runoff and, as a result, a smaller algae bloom in Lake Erie. Because of that, the issue was somewhat out of the spotlight this year, but we all know the algae issue has not gone away. And while there are still many questions, those in row-crop agriculture who want to address problems with water quality and costly nutrient loss now have some fairly clear guidelines to follow and plenty of help from Ohio farm organizations and agribusiness to help implement and showcase those efforts. The answers are as simple and simultaneously complex as the 4Rs.In what will surely be an ongoing battle with nutrient loss in agriculture, we finally have some answers. Now we all need to make sure we are acting on them. Do you get it? I sincerely hope that you do.
FIRST AFFILIATES JOIN TOUCH FOOTBALL AUSTRALIA Queensland has created history with two of their affiliates joining Touch Football Australia under the new Unitary Model of Management. A restructure of the sport in Australia has resulted in the affiliates (local competitions) becoming direct members of the national body. The new structure, recommended by an independent report produced in June 2004, is being implemented across Australia. Brisbane Metropolitan Touch Association (BMTA) was the first affiliate in Australia to become part of the new body under the guidance of BMTA President Ken Willett, a member of the committee that drafted the new national constitution. Willet is delighted that BMTA is the first member, believing that in the coming weeks many other affiliates will see the benefits of joining Touch Football Australia as a direct member. “This move is a great step forward for Brisbane Metro and for the sport as a whole,” Willett said. John Fitzgerald from Berserkers Touch in Rockhampton (formerly Central Queensland University Touch) followed BMTA’s announcement by also announcing that their affiliate has signed on as a member of Touch Football Australia. TFA Chief Executive Officer, Kevin Thompson, believes that the restructure of TFA and the steps these affiliates have taken will benefit them greatly. “It is great to see that the local competitions appreciate the benefits of the new model and are signing up. The whole theme of the restructure is to reduce duplication and administration and to divert more resources to the grass roots. The players, officials and coaches in BMTA and Berserkers will be the first to benefit.” FOR MORE INFORMATION: If you would like to know more about the management restructure, the benefits for your affiliate or how to join, simply click here: INFORMATION ON AFFILIATION Or contact: Kevin Thompson Australian Touch Association Chief Executive Officer Ph: (02) 6285 2703
Jeff Capel Quinn CookDuke senior guard Quinn Cook, one of the few upperclassmen who saw meaningful time for the Blue Devils on the floor during the NCAA Tournament, has a great relationship with the team’s coaching staff. Thursday, we saw yet another example of that fact in action.Duke assistant Jeff Capel posted a photo of a note that Cook left him on his office door from yesterday. In the note, Cook writes that he “came through” to talk to Capel. Capel’s response? “You most definitely came through.” Well done.Cook had a fantastic NCAA Tournament, averaging 13.5 points per game as he led the Blue Devils to their fifth national title. He’s out of eligibility, but we have a feeling that he’ll still be a fan favorite for quite some time.
zoom The Norwegian car shipping company Höegh Autoliners has been referred to the Competition Tribunal of South Africa for prosecution on seven charges relating to collusive tendering, price fixing and market division.The charges come on the back of a probe into widespread anti-competitive conduct in the market for the provision of transportation of motor vehicles, equipment and machinery by sea to and from South Africa, according to the country’s Competition Commission.Höegh Autoliners was accused of colluding with Japan’s Mitsui O.S.K Lines Ltd (MOL) from around 2009, when the two companies allegedly engaged in prohibited practices in that they agreed and/or engaged in concerted practices as competitors to fix prices, divide markets and tender collusively.The Commission said that the charges entail a number of collusive activities from 1997 to 2010 to ship motor vehicles from Thailand, Japan and India to South Africa, from South Africa to Europe, North Africa and North America, as well as to Europe.MOL previously approached the Commission in terms of its Corporate Leniency Policy and was subsequently granted leniency for its involvement in the cartel conduct in exchange for information and full cooperation in the matter.In referring the matter against Höegh to the Tribunal for adjudication, the Commission is seeking an order declaring that the company is liable for the payment of an administrative penalty equal to 10% of its annual turnover on each of the charges.
Dennis Ward APTN National NewsA family is searching for answers after learning their loved one was killed.The man from a Northern Manitoba Cree community was found dead in Winnipeg’s downtown.On Wednesday night, a vigil was held where his body was discovered.
NEW YORK — The latest on developments in financial markets (all times local):9:35 a.m.Global stock indexes are climbing as investors hope for progress in U.S.-China trade negotiations.Technology companies and retailers rose Wednesday. Microsoft jumped 2.1 per cent and Amazon rose 1.3 per cent.Energy companies jumped as crude oil prices rose 1.4 per cent.Equipment rental company United Rentals rose 7.3 per cent after giving strong forecasts for 2019.Stocks have gone through huge swings this week after a wave of selling at the end of the previous week.The S&P 500 index gained 30 points, or 1.2 per cent, to 2,667.The Dow Jones Industrial Average jumped 283 points, or 1.2 per cent, to 24,653. The Nasdaq composite rose 88 points, or 1.3 per cent, to 7,120.Stocks in Europe and Asia also rallied.The Associated Press
Kolkata: With the highly anticipated 2019 Lok Sabha elections drawing closer, Trinamool Congress nominee from Kolkata South constituency Mala Roy began her poll campaign on Wednesday. She was accompanied by Subrata Mukherjee, the party’s nominee from Bankura.Roy said that along with door-to-door campaign and rallies, she would give stress on social media as well. “We will approach the people on social media apart from going door-to-door. We will highlight the failure of the BJP government. Narendra Modi has not deposited Rs 15 lakh in the bank accounts of the people of the country as per his promise before the 2014 election. The note ban had affected common people very badly. The hate politics of BJP has become a major disaster for India. All these things will be highlighted during the campaign,” she added. A veteran politician, Roy had joined the Chatra Parishad in the 1970s. She had worked with leaders like Siddhartha Shankar Roy, Ajit Panja, Priya Ranjan Das Munshi and Pranab Mukherjee. A household name in South Kolkata, she is now the chairperson of Kolkata Municipal Corporation. It was Roy who had started the fair of foreign birds in the city to create awareness among people, particularly the children and youth. The fair has become very popular in Kolkata and is now being held in most of the wards. “South Kolkata is an important seat and is the focus of news throughout the country. The development projects taken up by Mamata Banerjee have benefitted all sections of people. During our campaign, we will highlight the development work carried out in the city,” Roy said. Roy was watching television at KMC headquarters, when Trinamool supremo Mamata Banerjee announced her name for the South Kolkata seat. “I am grateful to Mamata di for selecting me for the seat. I will work for the people.” It may be recalled that Roy was a Member, Mayor-in-Council, during the tenure of Subrata Mukherjee as Mayor from 2000 to 2005. The seven segments under the Kolkata South Lok Sabha seat are Kasba, Behala East and West, Kolkata Port, Bhowanipore, Rashbehari and Ballygunge. South Kolkata is the only constituency where six of the seven segments have a minister each. Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee is an MLA from Bhowanipore. The other ministers are Javed Khan from Kasba, Partha Chatterjee from Behala West, Firhad Hakim from Kolkata Port, Subrata Mukherjee from Ballygunge and Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay from Rashbehari. Sovan Chatterjee, who was a minister until recently, is an MLA from Behala East. Senior party leader Subrata Bakshi, who had been elected from the Kolkata South seat, had won by 1.36 lakh votes in 2014.
Gururgam: A shopkeeper was shot at by two unidentified men after he asked for money for giving them cigarettes.The victims who are said to be critical has been admitted in the hospital for treatment. Meanwhile, the assailants who attacked him have not been identified as of now. The entire incident occurred on Monday night when two people who were on the bike asked for a cigarette from a shop owner. They however became angry when the owner asked for money and after an alteration, they shot him and then fled away from the scene. “We have registered the case under the following sections and begun the search to nab the culprits. There were two people who were involved in the act. We are hoping that the shopkeeper who was injured in the act recovers soon so that he can help us in identifying the culprits,” said a senior police official from Sohan Police. “We are trying to retrieve the CCTV images around the area to see what may have been the real reason of the murder. As per our investigation, there were three masked men who came in the bike surrounded the victim and then shot him dead by firing multiple rounds of bullets,” he added. This is not for the first time when traders have been targetted or even murdered in the outskirts of the city. A sharp rise in the number of attacks on the traders in the outskirts of Gurugram by dreaded gangsters has resulted in the business community protesting on the worsening law and order time and again. The traders have been demanding that is a need for more police vigilance in the outskirts of the city like Sohna, Pataudi and Badshahpur where the rates of crime against the traders are rising rapidly.