A Plea For More Frisbee Data From A US Ultimate Coach

The few dabbles with this kind of data are intriguing. The chart next to this paragraph, which was put together by Sean Childers and is also in Carl’s piece, shows the chances of scoring from different parts of the field. It’s no surprise that the closer you are to the end zone, the better your chances of scoring are. But see that bow in the 40 percent range? Sean’s data — limited as it is — suggests that a team is just as likely to score from 50 yards outside the end zone in the middle of the field as it is from the sidelines 35 yards away. That’s actionable intelligence and confirms what I’ve gathered from years of experience — when you’re stuck on the sideline, bad things happen. (That’s why my advice to our defense against Great Britain was so focused on sideline strategy.)I would love to have other hunches of mine confirmed or disproved in this way. Am I justified in thinking that passes that “break the mark,”2Usually a defense tries to funnel offensive flow to one side of the field. Breaking the mark means that the offense is throwing passes to where the defense doesn’t want it to. no matter how small, have a cumulative effect of loosening up the defense, the way that Barcelona’s incessant tiki-taka style creates enough small cracks that eventually a big scoring opportunity emerges? It’s midway through the first half against Great Britain and they are scoring too easily. As a coach of the U.S. under-23 men’s Ultimate Frisbee team, I’d scouted the British team in an earlier game. Now, after watching the first 5 points of our semifinal match at this summer’s world championships, my fellow coaches and I gathered the team’s defensive line in a huddle: Their handlers are really comfortable throwing the around breaks, so let’s shift our marks to the backfield and make them throw the inside flick to a tight window. (For the 99 percent of you who didn’t get that: Basically, let’s position our defense in such a way that the only option for their throwers is a difficult forehand throw to a well-covered receiver.)The strategy happened to work: Deprived of easy, short passes, the British team began to take riskier and riskier long throws. Eventually, the percentages tilted in our favor, and we won by 3 points. We were on our way to a gold medal.That strategy, though, was basically put together on improvisation and a hunch. As my colleague Carl Bialik writes elsewhere on FiveThirtyEight, there isn’t much data in ultimate to help coaches like me.I can imagine a day, maybe at the 2025 world championships, when a brilliant coaching insight1And/or lucky guess. would emerge from a data set, displayed in a crisp chart on my iPad 12 (hologram edition). It would show which spots on the field the other team’s main throwers have trouble completing passes to. Another would reveal, say, that one of our players has a much higher completion rate along the forehand side than the backhand side. “Let’s run plays to that side of the field for him,” we, the brilliant coaches, would say.But having more data in my coaching arsenal is only the first step. Players don’t always absorb data-driven feedback easily.This isn’t unique to ultimate. Even in basketball, the players like Shane Battier who explicitly embrace analytics and can probably speak the language of usage rate and points per possession are rare.So coaches have to adjust their language. Players can better process “he doesn’t want to go right” than execute on “when positioned within 3 feet of the left elbow, your matchup’s shooting percentage decreases by 32 percentage points.” When I was playing top-level ultimate, I was much more effective on the field when the only thing running through my head was “screw these guys — let’s beat ’em.”But the job of a coach is to bridge the gap between a player’s lizard brain and the stat sheet. I’d love the challenge of having to translate analytics into simple language that gets my players out-performing, not over-thinking. Quick movement from FC Barcelona and Seattle Sockeye What about my intuition that after five or six passes, an offense is usually so tired that it’s better to try to score in one long pass than to continue grinding away 3 yards at a time? You may notice that those two hunches might actually be at odds with each other. This is why we need the data! Send in the nerds.CORRECTION (Dec. 16, 9:22 a.m.): An earlier version of this article incorrectly referred to Great Britain’s ultimate team as the English team throughout. Read more: Ultimate Frisbee Is In The Dark Ages Of Analytics — And It Wants To Escape read more

Ohio State readying to welcome Hawaii after quick turnaround

Coach Urban Meyer and members of OSU football team before a game against Virginia Tech on September 7 in Blacksburg, Virginia. OSU won 42-24. Credit: Samantha Hollingshead / Photo EditorAfter returning to campus at around 4:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning after beating Virginia Tech 42-24, Ohio State has the task of a very short turnaround to its next game.“It’s real difficult right now,” OSU coach Urban Meyer said. “Guys are still sore, banged up. That was a tough game.”Now with the Labor Day challenge against the Hokies in the win column, the Buckeyes (1-0) are set to welcome the Hawaii Rainbow Warriors (1-0) for OSU’s home opener.Despite Saturday’s game marking the first-ever meeting between the two programs, Meyer said that the Hawaii game was not mentioned once until the Virginia Tech one came to a close. The coach described the preparation for Virginia Tech as a “Super Bowl-type atmosphere” and prepared for the game like there is “no tomorrow.”Potentially putting the Buckeyes at a further lack of preparation for Saturday’s game is the fact that Meyer and his coaching staff were not allowed to hold a practice until Wednesday, just three days before the game.“We appealed to the NCAA to let us meet with them yesterday and all that, and they said no, so those are all things probably before you schedule a Monday night game we should ask those questions because we’re way behind,” Meyer said.The coach further added that Wednesday’s practice was an abbreviated one because players were still tired from playing two nights before.However, Meyer said that he “feels great” about the team being fresh enough to play as well against the Rainbow Warriors as it did against the Hokies, crediting the depth that OSU has at just about every position as a reason for confidence.Previously for HawaiiDespite being outgained by 71 total yards, the Rainbow Warriors held off Colorado at Aloha Stadium 28-20 on Thursday night.Senior quarterback Max Wittek completed 19 of 38 passes with three touchdowns and two interceptions, while Columbus native Paul Harris led the way on the ground. The junior rushed for 68 yards on 17 attempts.The offensive highlight of the game for Hawaii came from a 79-yard connection from Wittek to junior receiver Marcus Kemp in the middle of the second quarter to put Hawaii up 15-7 at the time.Senior defensive lineman Luke Shawley starred on defense for Hawaii, racking up 14 tackles, including 1.5 sacks.Joining the partyWhen OSU topped Virginia Tech on Monday, it did so without the benefit of four major players. Those four will be back on the gridiron against the Rainbow Warriors on Saturday.Redshirt sophomore H-back Jalin Marshall, junior H-back Dontre Wilson, redshirt senior receiver Corey Smith and junior defensive end Joey Bosa were all suspended for the opener due to violations of athletic department policies.Marshall, Wilson and Smith are poised to bolster an offense that already crushed Virginia Tech to the tune of 572 total yards and a school-record 10.2 yards per play.Bosa, a 2014 unanimous Associated Press All-American, should force the opposing offensive line to return to its usual double-teaming of the Fort Lauderdale, Florida, native, which sophomore linebacker Raekwon McMillan said could enable the rest of the defense to run wild.“Joey is one of the best, if not the best, player in the nation,” McMillan said. “Having him back on the field with us, even though we had guys step up last week, having him back on the field will be fun.”Awards and recordsWith the Virginia Tech game approaching, there was plenty of doubt about how Braxton Miller, a former quarterback turned H-Back, could contribute turn right out of the gate.The redshirt senior quickly put those doubts to rest, putting up not only a strong game but an award-winning one.Miller, after catching two passes for 78 yards and rushing six times for 62 yards, with a touchdown doing both, was named the Big Ten offensive player of the week for the fourth time in his career.Additionally, the Huber Heights, Ohio, native’s 54-yard receiving touchdown early in the third quarter tied Art Schlichter’s school record for career touchdowns responsible for with 85, while his 53-yard run later in the quarter set the new mark.Up nextAfter the 3:30 p.m. game against Hawaii on Saturday, the Buckeyes are scheduled to continue their three-game non-conference homestand against Northern Illinois. Kickoff is again set for 3:30 p.m. on Sept. 19 at Ohio Stadium. read more

Mens Basketball Andre Wesson takes role of Kaleb Wesson in Ohio States

Ohio State junior forward Andre Wesson (24) shoots a 3-pointer in the second half of the game against Purdue on Jan. 23. Ohio State lost 79-67. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorThrough 17 games, it was clear who Ohio State was going to work through down the stretch.Sophomore forward Kaleb Wesson was leading the Buckeyes in scoring by 2.8 points and averaging two more rebounds per game than anyone else on the team.But in Wednesday’s 79-67 loss to Purdue, Wesson found himself in foul trouble, limiting his play time to 16 minutes, and limiting his production to six points and three rebounds.Ohio State was in need of a different player to step up. It turned out the team didn’t even need to look for a different last name to do so.Kaleb’s older brother, junior forward Andre Wesson, stepped up and led the Buckeyes with 22 points, 15 of which came in the second half.Andre Wesson hit on 9-of-10 shots on the night, going a perfect 9-of-9 to start the game, including hitting four-of-five shots from deep.He said his career-best performance came from a sense of urgency after going on the longest losing streak since head coach Chris Holtmann took over the team.“This is one that we really needed,” Andre Wesson said. “When you lose four straight, you’re desperate, you need it, so that’s what you saw.”With the first half a second away from ending, Andre Wesson’s game looked to be the norm for him.Ohio State was down 13, and the junior forward had four points and two rebounds, closer to his season averages of 7.6 points and 4.3 boards per game than the stats with which he finished.But he began his big night on a shot from behind half court that banked its way into the hoop as time expired to bring the Buckeyes to within 10.Andre Wesson followed that up by scoring six of Ohio State’s first eight points in the second half, hitting jump shot to bring the Buckeyes within four with less than seven minutes left in the game.Purdue outscored Ohio State 12-4 following his final basket.Andre Wesson’s 22 points was a career high, nine points more than any other game he has played in his collegiate career. His four 3s, nine field goals and 37 minutes played were also all career highs for the No. 4 leading scorer for the Buckeyes this season.“I thought Andre’s spirit and competitiveness really carried this group,” Holtmann said. “That was good to see.”The opportunity for Andre Wesson to continue stepping up in the way he did against the Boilermakers comes at the foul trouble of his brother.Kaleb Wesson is tied for No. 61 in the NCAA with 61 personal fouls this season. He has earned at least three fouls in his past eight games, and at least four in seven of the past eight.As Ohio State’s leading scorer, Kaleb Wesson played four minutes in the second half before fouling out.“He just has to stay in it,” Andre Wesson said. “You’re gonna get bad calls some nights, or things aren’t gonna go your way, so you just gotta stay in it.”Kaleb Wesson will continue to be the guy for Ohio State down the stretch, pending on his ability to be available down the stretch due to fouls.But Holtmann saw something he can use from the loss to Purdue. In the defeat, he found a new Andre Wesson that had not yet been seen through three years at the program, something brought to life through a small-ball lineup that didn’t have Kaleb Wesson on the floor.“I think playing down a little bit gave him a little bit more open floor, a little more movement, gave him an advantage there, and he did a good job taking advantage of it and driving it and shooting it,” Holtmann said. “He’s put in work, and I liked the spacing that the smaller group provided.” read more

1 dead several injured in early morning accident in Lethem

One woman was killed while several others were injured following an accident along the Tabatinga Public Road, Region Nine early this morning.The dead woman has been identified as 28-year-old Violet Stephen of St. Ignatius Village, Central Rupununi.Reports are that the accident took place around 02:30h after the driver of the motor pick-up lost control. The vehicle reportedly toppled several times before coming to a halt on its left side.The occupants who were in the tray of the vehicle were reportedly thrown out of the vehicle as it toppled. They were all picked up in a conscious state and taken to the Lethem Regional Hospital.Stephen however, died while receiving treatment while Ronaldo Bento and David Coates (two other occupants in the vehicle) were admitted to the hospital. The other injured persons were treated and sent away.According to the Police, the driver of the vehicle is a clerk attached to the Lethem Magistrate’s Court. He suffered no injuries and is presently in custody assisting with the investigation. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedGuyana/Brazil Consulate Officer killed in accident off Takutu BridgeAugust 9, 2014In “Crime”UPDATE:1 dead, several injured in WBD accidentFebruary 3, 2018In “Crime”2 dead, 1 injured in accident after car ends up in Mahaicony trenchSeptember 3, 2018In “Crime” read more

Region 5 joins in countrywide protest

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedPPP supporters in Region 2 call for early electionMarch 22, 2019In “latest news”PPP protests again for Govt to resign, call electionsJuly 31, 2019In “latest news”PPP/C stages countrywide protests against house-to-house registrationJuly 26, 2019In “latest news” Supporters of the PPP/C in Region Five (Mahaica/Berbice) have joined in the countrywide protest calling on the APNU/AFC government to step down. Below are photos of the peaceful demonstration: read more

CJIA employee dies in Soesdyke smashup

An employee attached to the Civil Aviation Department (CAD) of the Cheddi Jagan International Airport was on Sunday evening killed following an accident on the Soesdyke Public Road, East Bank Demerara.Dead is 25-year-old Colin Bourne.Dead Colin BourneWhile information about the fatal accident remain sketchy, INews understands that it involved two minibuses and the motorcycle Bourne was riding at the time.Bourne was employed as a “Red Cap” at the airport for the past several years. An investigation has been launched as both minibus drivers are under arrest. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Related3 killed, 1 critical in WBD smash-upAugust 12, 2018In “latest news”CJIA employee found dead in reservoir following fightNovember 24, 2014In “Crime”Sophia man on trial for murdering fatherFebruary 12, 2019In “Court” read more

160M Indian Arrival Monument in Region 6 completed

The long-awaited Indian Arrival Monument which is located at Palmyra, East Coast Berbice (ECB) has now been completed and is expected to be commissioned on April 17.This was confirmed during a visit to the Ancient County by Social Cohesion Minister Dr. George Norton, who has responsibility for Culture, Youth and Sport.On Thursday, Minister Norton and a team from his department toured and thoroughly inspected the spanking new historic site, where they were able to have a firsthand view of the facility and to approve the quality of work carried out by the contractors.“We are going to declare open this monument site on the 17th of this month, with a representative of the High Commission and an official from the Government of Guyana. It was long over-due…,” Dr Norton said.Persons travelling to Region Six can, without a doubt, testify to seeing the six impressively huge, 12-foot-tall bronze statues erected and supported by a solid base at the ‘T Junction’ located just off the Berbice River Bridge’s entrance. The immense exhibit depicts a child, two women and three men performing their daily duties.The six statues have a value of $31 million (US$150,000). It was a donation made by the Government of India to Guyana in 2017.The APNU+AFC Government had intended to declare the monument site open at least before December of 2018, since the project was high on its national agenda. However, after assuming office in 2015, the Government discovered numerous faults to the design built by the previous administration, which had to be revised.Additionally, in April of last year, months before the sculptures were installed, the base which was constructed to support the six statues had collapsed. According to Chung, this incident was one which contributed to the delay of the project’s completion. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedIndian Arrival Monument at Palmyra finally completedMarch 9, 2019Similar postLetter: Indian Immigration Monument remains incomplete as 2 major milestones passedJune 6, 2018In “Letters”State of National Psychiatric Hospital disgraceful – Minister NortonJune 7, 2015In “Health” read more

WiPay launches new service for cash payments online

WiPay Guyana, an online payment solution, has launched a new feature enables businesses to accept both credit card and now, ‘cash’ payments online.Sacha Thompson WiPay COO speaking at the launch.As such, Caribbean Airlines in partnership with WiPay, today announced a new way to pay for your Airline tickets in Guyana.“Imagine sitting in the comfort of your home in Hinterland, and you do not possess a credit card. Not a problem! Now you can purchase your Caribbean Airlines ticket over the phone with a WiPay Top Up Voucher at any time, day or night, without having to physically go into Caribbean Airline’s Office in Georgetown. This ladies and gentlemen is innovation in customer experience through technology,” explained Sacha Thompson, COO of WiPay.WiPay’s new online payment gateway offers a world-class payment solution for Guyanese businesses who would like to sell their products and services online. “The best part is getting started is free, quick, easy and secure!” a press release from the firms noted.With WiPay, businesses can make and receive payments online by simply downloading the WiPay plugin for free and integrating it onto their website or Mobile App.Alternatively, businesses without websites can use WiPay’s ‘Send an Invoice’ feature to send an electronic invoice directly to a customer’s email, who then has the option to pay via credit card or with ‘cash’ from within the email’s window.WiPay’s approach of allowing ‘cash’ payments online follows the already familiar mobile ‘Top Up’ culture that exists in the Caribbean.A customer can simply go to any authorized WiPay partner location (e.g. Bill Express), purchase a ‘WiPay Top Up’ for the required amount. The customer can then use the Top Up’s unique 12-digit code to make a ‘cash’ payment online to any business that uses WiPay’s payment gateway.Caribbean Airlines is the first in the market to offer this new convenient service to its customers in Guyana as it continues to innovate in customer experience. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedCaribbean Airlines enters deal with Dubai-based airlineAugust 3, 2015In “Business”CAL ultimatum withdrawn as ‘dumping of duty-free items’ issue resolvedJune 21, 2016In “Business”Flag Carrier required for Category One statusSeptember 8, 2015In “Business” read more

NIS launches electronic data transfer option for employers

In observance of its 50th anniversary, the National Insurance Scheme (NIS) Friday hosted an Open Day where it also launched an electronic mode of data transfer for employers, which will reduce long waiting time and resources.Public Relations Officer, Dellon Davidson explained that employers will now have a hassle-free mode of transferring documents with regards to employee information.He added that the NIS plans to have payments become easier for employers in the near future, which will see contributions being paid through the banks.Davidson told Inews that the online service will be important for employers who have businesses in far-flung areas. The service, he noted, will ensure that necessary documents are submitted in a timely manner.“For employers who have problems coming into the (National Insurance) Scheme, joining the long lines for payments, we are making it more convenient and more feasible for persons to make their contributions online through the submission and on a later date, we will be offering payments online,” Davidson shared.Employers can make use of this service by logging onto the agency’s website at ‘www.nis.org.gy’.Before this new initiative, workers were mandated to submit monthly documents with employees’ information, which were filled out manually. With the new system, paper will be conserved, as well as time and energy. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedNIS will continue to grow from strength to strength – ChairmanOctober 1, 2013In “Local News”Finance Minister scolds delinquent NIS contributorsApril 2, 2015In “Politics”Security Firm accused of not paying employees NIS contributionsMay 13, 2019In “Crime” read more

Several sick patients airdashed to GPHC still undiagnosed

…testing still ongoing, hospital awaiting results to determine illnessOne week has passed since at least eight Chinese mining workers were air-dashed to the capital from Matthew’s Ridge, Region One, for emergency treatment and some of these men are yet to be diagnosed.While at least three of the men were said to have contracted leptospirosis with the deadly disease claiming the lives of two of them, it is unclear at this point as to what illness/illnesses the other men may have contracted.Chief Medical Officer, Dr Shamdeo Persaud told <> on Friday that investigations into the matter are ongoing and the Public Health Ministry along with international health organisations are still conducting further laboratory testing to determine what the men are suffering from.Medical staff awaiting the arrival of the suspected Swine Flu patients at Ogle Airport (file photo)“We are waiting for the results. We don’t know what they have and we also don’t know how long it will take for the results to get back to us. But as soon as the results come they will be disclosed,” he stated.Meanwhile, the health officials in Region One are tight-lipped about the conditions and treatment of other patients who may have either contracted leptospirosis or be exhibiting symptoms similar to those men who are yet to be diagnosed.Several others who were brought out from the manganese operation site, Guyana Manganese Incorporated (GMI), at Matthew’s Ridge remain patients at that medical institution.On Thursday, the Public Health Ministry in a statement pointed out that the second miner who passed due to his illness died from complications associated with leptospirosis on Wednesday night while undergoing treatment at the GPHC.Another mining employee, who also tested positive for leptospirosis, is in “critical but stable condition,” an internal medicine specialist at the tertiary institution confirmed on Thursday.Dr Persaud, in the statement, highlighted that while two of those patients were successfully treated and discharged from GPHC, Regional Health Officer, Dr Ramjas has updated the MoPH that another Guyana Manganese Incorporated employee has been admitted at the Pakera Hospital and is undergoing treatment for a respiratory tract infection. This patient is said to be in a stable condition.Dr Persaud reiterated that all precautionary measures are still in place at the Matthews Ridge tunnel site and its immediate surroundings and he said essential medical supplies are in stock to treat employees of the mining firm and residents of the area. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedOperations at Matthew’s Ridge Hospital temporarily shut downApril 1, 2019In “Health”Second Chinese National air-dashed from Matthew’s Ridge diesApril 4, 2019In “Health”Region 1 still awaiting 2nd shipment of drugs, medical suppliesJuly 22, 2019In “Health” read more

Algeria protests Police use water cannon to disperse demonstrators

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedProtesters fight police, burn Maduro puppets in VenezuelaApril 21, 2014In “Regional”G20: Hamburg sees clashes between police and protestersJuly 6, 2017In “World”President’s Berbice visit greeted with protestJanuary 13, 2018In “latest news” Algerian police have used water cannon to disperse protesters demonstrating against Abdelkader Bensalah’s appointment as interim president.Bensalah, the speaker of parliament’s upper house, succeeds President Abdelaziz Bouteflika, who resigned last week following weeks of peaceful demonstrations.But many want more radical change. Bensalah, who will be in power until a presidential election, pledged to work in the interests of the people.Protesters have called for an end to the “system” (AFP Photo_“I need everyone during this period in our country to apply the constitution strictly, to work hard, faithfully and with dedication in order to return as soon as possible the word to the people,” he told members of parliament after he was appointed. He is due to be in office for 90 days.As soon as the appointment of Bensalah was announced, protesters took to the streets of the capital, Algiers, demanding “Bensalah go”. The 77-year-old is seen as being very close to the ailing former president, who had been in power for 20 years.From the start of the protests in February, the demonstrators have not just been focusing on Bouteflika, Algeria analyst James McDougall told the BBC.Placards and online posts have been demanding an end to the “system”, or “Le Pouvoir”, meaning that all those around the former president should also go.The allegation was that Bouteflika was used as a front for a group of businessmen, politicians and military officials, who are said to really run the country.The protests have been peaceful and the security forces have not used heavy-handed tactics to break them up. (BBC) read more

Former Minister calls for probe in CJIA expansion project

Former Public Works Minister under the People’s Progressive Party/Civic (PPP/C), Robeson Benn, has supported calls for “a full-fledged public investigation” into the controversial Cheddi Jagan International Airport (CJIA) expansion project, particular the fixed-price contract with China Harbour Engineering Company (CHEC) which the coalition Government has “tremendously modified”.“I support calls for a full-fledged public investigation into how a fixed-price contract could be subject to changes in scope and intent,” Benn said in a statement on Tuesday in response to comments made by Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson on Monday.Minister Patterson, in a statement posted to his social media account, threw the blame for the delays of the CJIA expansion project at the feet of the former Administration, despite taking control of the project almost four years ago.However, in a subsequent missive on Tuesday, Benn explained that Guyana entered into the design and build fixed-price contract with CHEC for the expansion of the CJIA to address issues such as congestion and ageing facilities. He noted that the payment was made on the usual 30 per cent mobilisation advance to the Chinese company, which was bonded.“Initial delays in project start-up occurred as CHEC sought to extract an increase in the project sum by US$30 million. Their effort was refused based on international contracting rules for fixed-price contracts and the considered view that they sought increase was not warranted, anyway,” he stated.According to the former Public Works Minister, by the time the coalition Government took over the project in 2015, the performance schedules of many national contracts were in difficulty because of budgetary cuts imposed by the then APNU and AFC parliamentary opposition.“It is now evident that the scope of this project seems to have been tremendously modified with the effect of impairing the project’s original intended validity and integrity… It is obvious that the Minister is making an attempt, utilising his Facebook page and friends, to assign blame elsewhere for failings on the project after being responsible for the project for almost four years,” Benn posited.He went on to clear the air on “assertions” made by Patterson, starting with the project supervision. The Minister had said that CHEC worked for over 18 months without any independent supervision. But according to Benn, before the supervising consultants – MMM Group Limited in association with Caribbean Engineering and Management Consultants (CEMCO) – came on stream in July 2014, the Ministry’s Works Services Group (WSG) undertook supervisory responsibility of the project from its commencement in January 2013.Furthermore, in addressing the allegations of allowing extra sand filling and determining the cost of the sand made by the Public Infrastructure Minister, Benn pointed out that the sand had to be provided free of royalties, which are costs that would have been charged back to the project, anyway. He added too that the sand provided was designed to allow for placement of an engineered fill, at levels of compaction and stability to provide for a safe, stable runway extension.In 2012, the then PPP/C Administration secured a US$138 million loan from the China Exim (Export-Import) Bank to fund the expansion and modernisation project, for which Guyana was slated to inject some US$12 million.However, even though Patterson said the airport specifications were downgraded to limit cost overruns, the coalition Government went to the National Assembly last year for $346.5 million in supplementary funds towards the purchase and installation of two additional air bridges. In 2019, taxpayers are expected to hand out even more funds as the project remains in an incomplete state.The extension of works into 2019 comes in disparity to an earlier commitment by Government where it committed that the works associated with the expansion would have been completed by the last quarter of 2018.Initially, the project was scheduled to be completed within 32 months of its commencement in 2013. Later on, officials were optimistic of the project being completed by 2017. But having missed that deadline, Minister Patterson had assured a December 2018 completion.During a press conference back in January following a media tour of the facility where works were still ongoing, the Public Infrastructure Minister gave a new deadline of March 31.But according to Benn, with this new deadline having also passed, “we are, apparently, now being asked to prepare ourselves, via Facebook, to accept less for more in the result along with experiencing excessive and prolong delays related to this project”. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedCJIA expansion:$346.5M being sought for 2 more air bridgesApril 28, 2018In “Business”4 years after inheriting project: Govt blames PPP for CJIA project delaysApril 23, 2019In “latest news”China Harbour faces US$7,000 per day fine for missing deadline for airport expansion projectJanuary 29, 2019In “latest news” read more

Housing Minister reassigned over conflict of interest allegations – President

Former Junior Communities Minister with responsibility for Housing, Valerie Patterson-Yearwood, was reassigned in light of the controversy surrounding the award of a multi-million dollar contract to her husband, Godfrey Yearwood.President David Granger confirmed this morning that the decision to move the minister to another ministry is in the “public interest”.Patterson-Yearwood was reassigned as the Ministry of Agriculture with responsibility for rural affairs, a position which did not previously exist. “There were certain allegations and I felt that it will be in the public interest for her to go to another Ministry. She has not been convicted of any crime and I feel that her services would be used supporting the Minister of Agriculture [Noel Holder]…,” President Granger told reporters on the sidelines of an event this morning.“At this point, I am satisfied that she has not committed any criminal offence, that she is a fit and proper person to continue to serve in the Department of Rural Affairs in the Ministry of Agriculture,” the Head-of-State expressed. Minister Patterson-Yearwood’s husband was awarded several contracts by the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA). She has since insisted that she did not intervene or influence the process to allow her husband to benefit.When she was asked about her reassignment during the last sitting of the National Assembly, Patterson-Yearwood contended that the transfer was not a demotion.“My salary is not affected, my allowances…nothing is affected,” she said.Meanwhile, Minister Annette Ferguson, who previously served as Junior Public Infrastructure Minister, will be taking over as Minister with responsibility for Housing. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedPresident announces plans to reshuffle Permanent SecretariesMay 16, 2019In “latest news”BREAKING: President announces Cabinet reshuffleApril 25, 2019In “latest news”Jaipaul Sharma removed from Finance, now at Public Infrastructure MinistryJune 15, 2019In “Local News” read more

Several firms fail to comply with global transparency initiative

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedUS gives support for Guyana to pursue transparency in extractive sectorOctober 7, 2016In “2017 Pre-Budget consultations underway”Guyana’s application for EITI candidature approvedOctober 25, 2017Similar postGuyana seeking membership in extractive industries global bodyJune 27, 2016In “Mining” Several firms operating in the country’s extractive sector have failed to comply with a global transparency initiative being undertaken by the Guyana Government.The initiative, the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI), is a global standard to promote accountable management of oil, gas, and mineral resources.Guyana just completed and submitted its first EITI report. However, out of nine companies identified to partake, only seven complied.Addressing media operatives on Friday, Minister of Natural Resources Raphael Trotman stated that the EITI procedure is currently voluntary, which enables companies to determine whether or not their data should be released.“I believe that scoring seven out of nine on the first go is an excellent score to achieve. I believe that for reasons best known to the companies, they chose not to participate. We didn’t get a sense that it was a refusal, rather an opting out at this moment,” he explained.However, Trotman said legislation may be needed to ensure companies comply.It was reported just a few days ago on Wednesday that total revenues from the sector in the 2017 fiscal year amounted to $20.8 Billion.The Guyana Gold Board, to which gold declarations are made, accounted for 33 per cent of this revenue. This is followed by the Guyana Revenue Authority, 32 per cent and the Ministry of Finance, 18 per cent.Gold and other minerals contributed $17.4 Billion or 84 per cent of revenue from the extractive industries. On the other hand, oil and gas contributed $2.8 Billion or 14 per cent. Bauxite, one of Guyana’s oldest industries, contributed $479 Million or 2 per cent.The extractive industries’ contribution to exports has a dollar value of 193.2 Billion. Besides the sector’s contribution to exports, it contributed 9.3 per cent to total Government revenues and 4.2 per cent to Guyana’s total employment. Its contribution to Guyana’s overall Gross Domestic Product (GDP) was 20 per cent. read more

Hard Rock Café opens in Guyana

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedGCCI, PSC tour MovieTowne Plaza ahead of its opening this yearJune 12, 2018In “Business”Guyana Goldfields makes first saleOctober 29, 2015In “Business”Guyana Goldfields transitioning from surface to underground miningFebruary 5, 2018In “Business” Hard Rock Café, an international franchise, has opened its doors to Guyana at the Movietowne Mall, Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown.The restaurant, famous for its wide-ranging memorabilia collection, promises an unforgettable experience.Patrons can indulge in mouth-watering dishes and cocktails prepared by the trained and enthusiastic staffers, in an atmosphere decorated with musical instruments and garments associated with legends such as Elvis Presley and Bon Jovi.“We saw the potential in Guyana and we thought now is the moment. This country is about to blow up. We think it’s gonna be very successful economically and I think this is the time for the brand to come,” Vice President Tom Perez explained why the company decided to establish a presence here.So far, 75 locals have already been hired and are being trained to offer the best service. read more

Dr Roopnaraine Gaskin retained by Govt

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedPresident announces plans to reshuffle Permanent SecretariesMay 16, 2019In “latest news”Jagdeo says creation of new jobs for ex-ministers “incestuous, corrupt”May 17, 2019In “latest news”President demotes Dr Roopnaraine from Education to MOTP Department of Public ServiceJune 13, 2017In “latest news” The Government of Guyana has created new positions for former ministers Dominic Gaskin and Dr Rupert Roopnaraine.They join their other two colleagues, Joseph Harmon and Carl Greenidge, who were already confirmed to be retained by the coalition administration.Gaskin, who served as Business Minister since 2015 when the new government took office, has now been appointed Director of Manufacturing and Marketing within the Ministry of Business.His responsibilities will include the enforcement of standards, providing assistance to small producers, and access to markets, particularly in the Eastern Caribbean.Dr Roopnaraine, who was previously the Minister of Public Service, will now serve as Director of Public Service Training within the Ministry of the Presidency.His responsibilities will include oversight of training standards at the Bertram Collins College of the Public Service, the Guyana Defence Force Staff College and the Guyana Police Force Staff College.It was already announced that Harmon, the former Minister of State, has taken up the role of Director General of the Ministry of the Presidency.Greenidge, the former Foreign Affairs Minister, has been appointed the Foreign Secretary at the Ministry, with responsibility for the Department of Frontiers and Territorial Integrity as well as the Department of Trade and Economic Cooperation.These are new roles created by the government for these former ministers, who were forced to resign as parliamentarians in light of a recent court ruling.By resigning as members of parliaments, it meant that the individuals could also no longer serve as ministers of the government. read more

Windies confident ahead of World Cup opener on Friday

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Related’About time we win a World Cup’ – HolderFebruary 27, 2018In “latest news”Don’t despair! …Cricket great Clive Lloyd says Windies have talent to dominate in futureJuly 9, 2019In “latest news”Windies skipper Holder tries to make sense of defeat to BangladeshJune 18, 2019In “latest news” File: Jason Holder celebrates a wicket (Getty Images)After stunning New Zealand in their final warm-up encounter, Jason Holder and his West Indies team are a confident group heading into their opening game of the World Cup, on Friday May 31, against Pakistan. Sharing his sentiments during a media conference post the warm-up victory, Holder was a happy captain, to see his team score 421 runs and successfully defended.“That performance should give the entire group a lot of confidence, I thought we batted really well and we kept the momentum going through the innings,” Holder said. “Credit to the way Shai played, I thought Chris was outstanding at the beginning, getting us off to a good start, and Evin batted beautifully as well…and then Russell played a really good knock as well.The West Indies captain, Holder added: “We had the foundation up front, I think we hit every target that we set to hit and the beautiful thing is that we had set batters in most of the time and wickets in hand to launch at the end. We have put so many smiles on people’s faces back home in the Caribbean and for me, I just want to continue to do that. I think we’re at our best when we play with freedom and a smile.”Holder was also pleased with the bowling performance. Carlos Brathwaite was the leading wicket-taker with three wickets, while left-arm spinner Fabien Allen also bowled well to take two wickets in the middle overs – both coming via stumpings. “I thought the bowlers were outstanding as well. To defend on such a good wicket and a small field it can be difficult and we went both sides of the park last time against South Africa. It was good to see the bowlers come back and show a lot more discipline.The plans worked well against the New Zealanders and we want to carry this sort of performance and this level of focus into the tournament,” Holder said. West Indies will travel to Nottingham for their first World Cup match against Pakistan at Trent Bridge on Friday May 31. First ball will be 5:30am local time.West Indies World Cup squad reads: Jason Holder (capt), Fabian Allen, Carlos Brathwaite, Darren Bravo, Sheldon Cottrell, Shannon Gabriel, Chris Gayle, Shimron Hetmyer, Shai Hope (wk), Evin Lewis, Ashley Nurse, Nicholas Pooran, Kemar Roach, Andre Russell, Oshane Thomas.West Indies Match Schedule (First ball for all matches is 5:30am local time) May 31: vs Pakistan – NottinghamJune 6: vs Australia – NottinghamJune 10: vs South Africa – SouthamptonJune 14: vs England – SouthamptonJune 17: vs Bangladesh – TauntonJune 22: vs New Zealand – Manchester (8:30am EC Time/7:30am Jamaica)June 27: vs India – ManchesterJuly 1: vs Sri Lanka – Chester-le-StreetJuly 4: vs Afghanistan – LeedsSemi-FinalsJuly 9: 1st vs 4th – ManchesterJuly 11: 2nd vs 3rd – BirminghamThe FinalJuly 14: Semi-final Winner 1 vs Semi-final Winner 2 – Lord’sJuly 15: Reserve Day read more

Miner gets bail on sexual assault charge

Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedCJIA Senior Manager charged for sexual assaultAugust 23, 2019In “Court”Arson suspect remanded, claims he was the victimOctober 23, 2017In “Court”Body of missing Sophia man found in trench…reputed wife recalls masked gunmen taking him from his home on night he went missingJanuary 20, 2016In “Crime” A 46-year-old miner was on Thursday brought before the Georgetown Magistrates’ Courts charged for engaging in sexual intercourse with a woman without her consent on August 10, 2018.Odingo Emanuel also known as ‘Dingo’ of Bamadai Landing, was not required to plea to the charge, when it was read to him by Chief Magistrate Ann MacLennan.The matter was held in-camera.The facts of the matter stated that about 22:30hrs the victim went to her friend’s wake, which was being held at a club, located about 10 feet away from her reputed husband’s house.The woman was imbibing alcohol at the wake, when she decided to look for her reputed husband. The woman then proceeded to ask if anyone had seen him, when the accused told her that she should check at the man’s house.Upon her arrival at the house, the victim noticed the door half-opened and she went straight to the bedroom, where she heard noise coming from the front door. As a result, the victim left the bedroom and went to the door, when she came face to face with the accused, who was inside the house.She then asked him why he was there, in which he remained silent, the accused then ran over towards her, threw her on the bedroom floor and had sexual intercourse with her.The woman began to scream and scratch the accused in his face, when her reputed husband came to her rescue and dragged the man off the woman. A report was made and the accused was arrested.Bail was granted in the sum of $250,000 and the matter was transferred to the Kamarang Magistrates’ Courts, where the accused is scheduled to make his court appearance on June 25. read more

Wakapoa Deaths Cyanide poisoning suspected as another person dies

Dead: Edward RichardsAnother person has died from a mysterious illness which has affected an entire family of Wakapoa Village, Region Two.Edward Richards, 76, succumbed today. So far, his daughter Selena Thomas has died while four other family members are hospitalised.The entire family fell ill after reportedly consuming cassava they reaped from their farm.A postmortem examination performed on the first victim was inconclusive but samples were sent overseas for further testing.Dead: Selena ThomasA close relative to the family told INews that those who remain hospitalised are being treated for cyanide poisoning.“I am devastated right now. I don’t know what to think or say. Just like that they died. It could have been anybody. We all eat cassava bread all the time why now or how. I just can’t find answers. I hope the doctors find what it is soon because I am so scared because the others are still hospitalised,” the relative expressed.Reports are that Thomas had prepared Cassava Bread which she and her household consumed. “She baked about 8 cakes of cassava bread and that’s what they were using all the time. And when family come over they would share and so… this was the norm but they didn’t imagine something was wrong with it or anything like that,” the relative explained.But shortly afterwards, everyone began experiencing stomach pains and vomiting.The relative added that they reportedly fed the same food to two of their dogs – both of which later died.  It is suspected that their farm had been contaminated with an illicit substance. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)RelatedPomeroon woman dies, others hospitalised after eating cassavaJune 17, 2019In “Crime”Police investigating Wakapoa poisoningJune 20, 2019In “Crime”Relatives of children who perished in Aruka boat accident plead for matter to be fully investigatedSeptember 5, 2016In “Crime” read more