INDEPENDENT TD Thomas Pringle has launched a series of community consultation events, meeting people in various parts of Donegal South West.Speaking at the first public meeting in the Finn Valley Centre last Monday night Mr Pringle heard the concerns of the people about issues in the area.Concerns were expressed about robberies in the area particularly in these recessionary times and people spoke about how they were concerned for their property. Closely linked to this were people’s concerns about the drugs issue in the area. The Independent TD briefed the meeting on the government’s ‘Jobs Initiative’ and there was a discussion around whether it would make an impact on the areas huge unemployment problem.This was the first of the newly elected TD’s ‘Community Consultation’ meetings around the constituency.‘This is a policy to ensure that I can keep in touch with the electorate and hold myself to account to the people. During the election campaign the people were really engaged with the political system and I believe it is important for the people to stay connected with politics and make sure that politicians represent them’ said Pringle.‘Through these monthly meetings I will brief the people on issues in the Dail and hear at first-hand what their concerns are for the area’ continued Pringle. ‘The attendance was also interested in the Technical Group in the Dail and how it is working- the perception was that a diverse group of independents could not work together, but the group is working very smoothly with respect for everyone’s opinion’ concluded Pringle.The next Community Consultation will take place in Annagry Community Hall on June 13th.TD PRINGLE LAUNCHES COMMUNITY CONSULTATION INITIATIVE was last modified: May 22nd, 2011 by gregShare 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:finn valleyThomas Pringle
8 November 2004South Africa’s diamond industry has excellent long-term prospects – but needs to polish up its value chain. That’s the word from the Diamond Board of South Africa, which recently tabled its 2003/4 annual report in Parliament.The R7.8-billion industry is the fourth-largest in the world, with only Botswana, Russia and Canada producing more diamonds each year.It has an output of around 13-million carats, and employs 28 000 people. Nearly half of those (13 000) are in mining. The second biggest employer is jewellery retail (9 000), followed by jewellery manufacturing (3 000), cutting and polishing (2 100) and sorting and valuing diamonds (900).South Africa’s world-class mining sector forms the cornerstone of its economy. It is the world’s biggest producer of gold and platinum and one of the leading producers of base metals and coal. Mineral commodities are exported to 80 countries, and the country’s mineral deposits are only matched by a few states of the former Soviet Union.Tabling its annual report, the SA Diamond Board said that South Africa was a “solid diamond trading country” with a complex value chain. It forecast a shortage of diamonds, and a consequent rise in prices, in the long term.Creating a value chainBut it also noted one of the key challenges facing the industry – creating a high value chain. South African still predominantly exports rough diamonds.“Our major challenge is to grow and advance South Africa’s cutting, polishing and jewellery manufacturing capacity in such a manner that it positions South Africa as a globally competitive diamond-producing country”, the board said.De Beers – which commands 90% of the diamond output in South Africa – estimates that the global retail market for diamond jewellery grew from US$20-billion in 1980 to more than $56-billion in 2003, with sales of diamond jewellery pieces tripling in the same period.However, De Beers tends not to use South Africa to add value to locally mined diamonds. Instead, it prefers to export rough diamonds to London, where – along with rough diamonds from other parts of the world – they are offered to clients.Critics say the local industry should be given the opportunity to build secondary and tertiary value-adding businesses – something De Beers seems keen to avoid. This is one of the reasons that has led to a review of the Diamond Act, which may insist on the conglomerate offering rough diamonds for local cutting first.Another challenge to the industry is the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act of 2002. The Act, together with the Socioeconomic Empowerment Charter, passed at the same time, seeks a more equitable mining industry, one of the bastions of privileged economic power during the country’s apartheid past.Through the Act, mineral rights are transferred to the state over a period of five years. The empowerment charter requires mining companies to have 15% black economic empowerment equity ownership within five years, and 26% within 10 years.SouthAfrica.info reporter
14 March 2008South Africa has entered the second phase of its national emergency response plan – the power rationing phase – which will last from the end of March to July, with Eskom looking to commercial and residential users to cut their electricity consumption by 10%.Eskom said in a statement this week that the second phase was to allow for the recovery of coal stocks and to address long-term plant health issues by carrying out more maintenance.Public Enterprises Minister Alec Erwin explained that while large industrial customers had delivered on the state’s call for demand reduction since February, there were no significant savings from the country’s commercial and residential sectors.“This means that we are unfortunately forced to move to scheduled load shedding as from 31 March 2008 to ensure that there is greater equity in dealing with the capacity constraints,” Erwin said. “Had we been able to achieve the 10% demand reduction of 3 000-megawatts, we would not have been in this position where we have to implement scheduled [power cuts].”During this period, Eskom will be taking the necessary steps to increase the size of coal stockpiles and improve the reliability of its supplies through additional scheduled plant maintenance.Should customers manage to achieve the 10% demand reduction, they will then be exempted from power cuts. Although selectively switchable critical loads or services will be exempted from power cuts where possible, they will still have to achieve the 10% demand reduction target.“A voluntary demand curtailment by all consumers is preferable to [power cuts], but we have unfortunately not received the 10% demand reduction from all customers,” said Eskom CEO Jacob Maroga. “We appeal to all South Africans to work with us to ensure that we do indeed achieve the 3 000-megawatts demand reduction without scheduled [power cuts].”According to Eskom, the period that will be used to set the base consumption level, from which savings have to be achieved, is October 2006 to September 2007.Given the key principle of equity, key industrial customers, municipalities and high voltage industrial or commercial customers that are selectively switchable, can apply for exclusion from scheduled power cuts, once savings have been achieved.Power cut schedulesEskom said that the proposed power cut schedules will be published on 17 March, following which municipalities and key industrial customers will be given until 21 March to apply for exemption from power cuts on the back of prior recorded savings or due to having a concrete demand reduction programme.On the 24 March, the revised power cut schedules that excludes the exempted customers will be published, and power cuts will then begin on the 31 March according to the revised schedule.Eskom will benchmark individual contracted reduction every two weeks to ensure that each customer is achieving the 10% reduction called for, which then allows customers to be exempted from power cuts.The utility explained that if a reduction were not achieved over the two benchmark periods, the customer would be reprogrammed into the power cuts schedule.“Eskom and the government will meet with the key industrial customers and metros and large municipalities every two months and at the end of each session will further use that opportunity to update the public on progress,” Maroga said.SAinfo reporter Want to use this article in your publication or on your website?See: Using SAinfo material
Indian President Pratibha Devisingh Patil and President Jacob Zuma have been in talks to expand bilateral trade and investment partnerships between the two countries. (Image: GCIS) Tata Motors opened its new assembly in South Africa at Rosslyn, north of Pretoria, in the Gauteng province of South Africa last year. (Image: goaonwheels.com) MEDIA CONTACTS • Zanele Mngadi The Presidency +27 12 300 5431 RELATED ARTICLES • India invests in Africa development • Zuma: shared prosperity for all • India and SA: 150 years of history • Africa is open for business Wilma den HartighSouth Africa and India are ready to take their bilateral trade and investment partnership to a new level. During the Johannesburg leg of the South Africa-India Business Forum, prominent Indian companies already doing business on the continent called on more businesses to bring their investment to Africa.The Business Forum forms part of Indian President Pratibha Devisingh Patil’s state visit to South Africa to discuss bilateral relations.Positive business experience in AfricaAddressing the two countries’ business communities, Raman Dhawan, MD of Tata Africa Holdings spoke about the company’s experience of doing business in South Africa.Tata is India’s largest automobile company and according to Nomaxabiso Majokweni, CEO of Business Unity South Africa, is one of about 100 Indian companies already investing in South Africa.The company has a strong presence in the African business community, being the single largest Indian investor in South Africa and Africa. It was also one of the first foreign companies to enter Africa and according to Dhawan, has plans to expand its business even further on the continent.“My message is loud and clear. You need to bring your money and invest in Africa,” Dhawan said. “The real fact is that you can’t ignore Africa.”He said that the ease of doing business in Africa is attractive to potential investors.The credibility of South Africa being ranked as one of the top emerging economies in terms of its ease of doing business has a significant impact on its competitiveness as a country.“I have huge confidence in Africa,” he said.Dr Vidya Soni, leader of the Indian business delegation and chairman of the Overseas Infrastructure Alliance, a project development and management company, echoed Dhawan’s sentiments.Soni said there are numerous factors that would encourage Indians to invest in South Africa. The country is one of the biggest economies in Africa and is rated as an upper-middle income economy by the World Bank.According to Soni, promising areas for investment and joint ventures include mining; power generation and distribution; transportation; agriculture; IT education and services; ports and railways; telecommunications; pharmaceuticals and education.He singled out railway development as an important area for collaboration as this is vital for regional interconnectivity.“In India, on a daily basis, two million people use railways. India can help South Africa to establish a larger railway footprint,” he said.Spotlight on service sectorsIan Ross, chief underwriting officer and director of international operations for Hollard Life Insurance, said that major potential exists in the financial services sectors, particularly as trade and investment between the two Brics partners expands.“Financial services is a forgotten sector, yet every aspect of trade between the two countries is underpinned by financial services,” Ross said. “You can’t do business without it. Every business that is opened has to be insured.”He pointed out that risk is a major consideration for any investor and this is why there is so much opportunity for risk-related financial services.“Risk-related financial services offers an opportunity to broaden the depth of interaction between the two countries,” he said. “It is a multi-billion dollar business and South Africa has a lot to offer in terms of this sector.”Upping trade targetsIn her address at the forum, President Patil said that South Africa is one of India’s most important trading partners.“In the future I believe our countries will have deep economic engagement. We view South Africa as a gateway to the Southern African region,” Patil said. “Our confidence in the South African economy is reflected in that several Indian banks operate in South Africa.”She said in her talks with President Jacob Zuma, they agreed to expand co-operation in the fields of power including renewable energy; health; information technology; science and technology; tourism; hospitality; infrastructure development, and culture.Trade between the two countries is flourishing and the trading partners have announced further increases to the agreed trade targets.Zuma told the business forum that South Africa and India are set to reach the targeted R116-billion (US$15-billion) in trade, ahead of their 2014 deadline.The target was set by the two governments during Zuma’s state visit to India in 2010. Zuma said that, going by the latest trade figures – close to R54-billion ($7-billion) by the end of 2011 – this could be reached earlier than anticipated.Patil said she is confident that the revised target can be achieved.“A growth rate of over 43% in bilateral trade between South Africa and India registered in the year 2010-11 is impressive by any standard, but especially so in today’s global economic scenario,” she said.South Africa is open for businessZuma said that the African continent is the new frontier of economic growth and development.“We stand ready to provide whatever support is needed to make doing business easy in the respective countries.”
The verdictNow that I’ve used these covers on over a dozen test outs, I’ve decided that while not perfect, they are quite good, and I’m happy I gave them a shot. I’ve heard rumors that they are working on an improved hook and maybe even a special cover to connect the duct fan to so we can stop climbing ladders altogether. Not sure when that day will come, but I am definitely looking forward to it. Time to investI had seen a few different reusable duct covers over the years that claimed to save time and tape, but until recently, I wasn’t doing enough volume to justify buying them. But with some steady work doing Georgia energy code compliance testing for builders, my creaky old knees were starting to complain. RELATED ARTICLES Simple Methods for Measuring Air FlowDuct Leakage TestingHow to Track Down Leaks in Forced-Air DuctworkNew Green Building Products: Vent Cap Systems Some days I like my work, and some days I don’t, but I guess that’s just the way the world is. This love/hate relationship really rears its ugly head when I have to go out and do blower door and Duct Blaster testing on homes. It’s not one of my favorite things to do, but if the weather’s nice and the drive’s not to far, it can end up being a good, and reasonably profitable, day.But no matter how good things are, climbing up and down ladders to mask ducts with that annoying sticky tape ends up being pretty unpleasant. When carrying a stepladder around to 15 or 20 (or more) registers, climbing up and applying duct mask to them, I am not inclined to sing “My Favorite Things.” Walking the exhibit hall at the recent ACI conference, I ran across Vent Cap Systems, a company selling recycled polypropylene covers for grilles and registers. The covers include an attachment for a roller extension that, they claimed, allows you to both install and remove their caps from the floor.Being assured that I could return them if I was dissatisfied, I broke down and ordered a set of 20 covers, hoping that they would arrive before my next set of homes to be tested. Unfortunately, they didn’t, but I was able to use them a few weeks later on my next test outs. How they workEach vent cover is a box, roughly the size of an average HVAC register with a thick foam gasket covering the edge that pushes against the ceiling. There is a string running through a spring-loaded fastener (not unlike one you see on some raincoats or athletic shorts drawstrings), connected to a small plastic hook.You use their RAT (Remote Attachment Tool) to push the hook up into the register, using it again to depress the ball at the end of the spring and push the cover up against the registers while you hold the string. I’d estimate that about 80% of the time the hook goes into the register slot easily and stays. The other 20% of the time involves trying again, usually accompanied by a little swearing and sweating. After you install the covers, you do your duct test, then go around and use the RAT again to depress the ball, and let the cover drop into your hands. Then you use the RAT yet again to snag the hook out of the register, about another 80% shot on the first try.One nice little feature they have is a pressure tube tap on one of the covers. You attach the hose to the tap, put the cover up and you are ready to attach it to the reference side of your pressure gauge.
Android app makers face difficulties that iPhone developers do not. It is harder to make money from Android apps than iOS apps, for instance. One of the (several) reasons is the ease with which pirates can copy and sell Android apps outside the purview of Google Play. The United States Department of Justice took notice this week and seized three websites accused of illegally distributing Android apps. The seizure of third-party app stores is the first of its kind, and some players in the Android ecosystem may applaud government intervention. But will it help Android developers solve the piracy problem?The three domains seized by the DOJ and Federal Bureau of Investigations were Applanet.net, Appbucket.net and Snappzmarket.com. Applanet was perhaps the biggest of the three and from its description on Twitter, it is no wonder why it attracted the DOJ’s attention.“Applanet is an exact replica of the android market. Get free paid apps. Directly to your phone!” Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces What it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Tags:#Android#mobile Related Posts The Applanet developer Twitter account had not posted an update since March this year and the official Applanet Twitter account has been privacy-restricted. SnappzMarket stated its mission to “make the open source operating system truly open.” AppBucket is a little more circumspect with a simple tagline of “Whatever YOU want us to be!”The DOJ apparently think they are pirates. “Software apps have become an increasingly essential part of our nation’s economy and creative culture, and the Criminal Division is committed to working with our law enforcement partners to protect the creators of these apps and other forms of intellectual property from those who seek to steal it,” said assistant attorney general Lanny Breuer in a statement.Third-party Android stores like this are easy to create. All a pirate needs to do is get access to an openly available Android Package (APK) file and load it into their own store or copy the code outright and republish the app. The Android operating system makes it easy to download (or “sideload”) these files from stores outside of Google Play. The easy ability to copy and disseminate illegitimate versions of Android apps makes for a perfect storm for piracy. Without fundamentally changing the nature of publishing Android apps, Google can do little to stop pirates. It could force developers to sign and lock down their apps via digital rights management or make it harder to access APKs. As of yet, Google has not made enough changes to how Android apps are published to stem the flood of piracy that affects developers. Now we see the federal government taking an interest. Several times a year we see stories of this nature where a foreign website is seized by U.S. authorities over copyright violation. For instance, the U.S. Immigrations and Customers Enforcement Agency (ICE) seized several foreign domains last year that were thought to be illegally streaming professional sports games. While Android developers may be looking for any shelter in the piracy storm, many will not agree with the DOJ’s seizure of these domains. The argument against domain seizures is that the U.S. agencies seize domains without a court ruling and violate the rights of the businesses being seized. In the end, the domain seizures by the DOJ are only a blip on the radar and a warning to other pirates. The real issue needs to be addressed by the developers themselves and by Google. The government can seize every domain it can find that pirates Android apps, but until the problem is eliminated at its root, the pirates and their customers will always find a way. dan rowinski
Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients Bryant unveils NBA China academy plans CONTRIBUTED PHOTOPhilippine volleyball superstar Alyssa Valdez is set for another stint overseas.The former Ateneo spiker is bound for Chinese Taipei next month to play as an import for a club team Attack Line.ADVERTISEMENT View comments BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight E.T. returns to earth, reunites with grown-up Elliott in new ad Read Next Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games The 24-year-old Valdez said she had already been invited to play in Taipei two years ago, but she had to turn down the offer to focus on her final playing year with the Lady Eagles.“Two years ago in the under-23 their national team coaches asked me if I could go there but I still have one more playing year left in the UAAP so I stayed here but we saw each other again in the AVC and they asked me again if I could go there,” Valdez recalled.“It’s exciting because it’s also going to be my first time in Chinese Taipei so I’m excited not only for volleyball but also to explore their culture and tradition.”ADVERTISEMENT Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC MOST READ LATEST STORIES Valdez announced her latest career move in an interview with her former Ateneo teammate turned TV reporter Gretchen Ho.“I just closed a deal with a Chinese Taipei club team, so I’m going to be there for the next few months,” Valdez said in a video posted by Ho.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“Hopefully, there will be a lot of Filipinos there that would make me feel at home. I’m also asking for your prayers that I get to give a good showing there,” she added in Filipino.Earlier in the year, Valdez suited up in Thailand as an import for 3BB Nakornnont. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information.
Liverpool forward Salah had award votes voided because of capital lettersby Ian Ferrisa month agoSend to a friendShare the loveTwo votes for Mohamed Salah in the Best Fifa men’s player award were not counted because signatures were in capital letters, says Fifa.The Egyptian Football Association (EFA) said acting Egypt coach Shawky Gharib and captain Ahmed Elmohamady voted for Liverpool forward Salah.Fifa said: “The signatures on the voting forms were in capital letters and thus seemed not valid.”The forms also lacked a mandatory signature by the EFA general secretary.Barcelona’s Lionel Messi won the award on Monday ahead of Juventus forward Cristiano Ronaldo and Liverpool defender Virgil van Dijk. TagsPremiership NewsAbout the authorIan FerrisShare the loveHave your say
About the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say Liverpool forward Firmino on target for Brazil in Senegal drawby Freddie Taylor15 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveRoberto Firmino was on target for Brazil in Thursday’s 1-1 draw with Senegal in Singapore.The Liverpool striker opened the scoring after just eight minutes when he latched onto a pass from Manchester City rival Gabriel Jesus before chipping the ball past Alfred Gomis from close range.Senegal levelled with a penalty by Bristol City’s Famara Diedhiou on the stroke of half-time.Neymar made his 100th appearance for Selecao, becoming just the seventh man to do so.Firmino’s Liverpool teammate Sadio Mane also featured and nearly scored the winner for his country with five minutes remaining.
Members of the public are being invited to take advantage of the multi-faceted services being offered at the Hope Zoo as part of the upgrading and refurbishing work now underway. Curator of the zoo, Orlando Robinson, tells JIS News that these services include guided school tours, and a petting zoo “where you can have an interactive experience with the animals”. “We have a new feature, which is the budgie feeding experience where you pay a small fee and you can go in and hand feed some birds,” he informs. Mr. Robinson further notes that a travelling petting zoo is offered, where persons can opt to bring the zoo experience to their doorsteps. They can also use the facility to host functions. He tells JIS News that an initiative is also underway to develop a concentrated programme for tours, and to work with the Ministry of Education to subsidise rates for school groups. “It is Jamaica’s national zoo and we want you to realize that we are all a part of building it. We want you to come out and support us whether it is in cash or kind, just come in and visit with your family, enjoy the space. It’s here for us to enjoy so please come out and support our services, enjoy the space and help us to rebuild Hope Zoo,” Mr Robinson says. Administrative Manager, Hope Zoo, Karen Gandretti, explains that guided tours have to be pre-booked, and also, if persons are interested, parties can be held on the property. “If you would like to have your birthday party at the property, you can reserve the various gazebos for that purpose or even the lawn (area). Some persons want a big outdoor party so they have a bounce about, trampolines, slides and all of those things, all of that can be done here as well,” Miss Gandretti says. The Hope Zoo Preservation Foundation, an affiliate of corporate entity, Guardsman Group, is partnering with the Government and other public and private stakeholders, to help bring the 60-acre property, which opened in 1961, back to the glory days. “In Kingston now, you don’t have a lot of green areas outside of Hope Gardens and Emancipation Park, and so there is this great need for our children and future generations to have somewhere where they can go and relax and be in touch with nature, not just with plants but with animals, whether they are from Jamaica or from other parts of the world,” says Operation Manager, Hope Zoo Preservation Foundation, Rovein Richards. So far, renovation is being done on buildings, new gazebos have been built, exhibit areas have been repaired and spruced-up with fresh coats of paints, walkways have been repaved, and landscaping in ongoing. Also, they are seeking to bring back some key animals as lions, zebras and camels. There are already several budgies, macaws and other exotic birds at the zoo and a donation of donkeys was made earlier this year. The latter will form part of a domestic animal exhibit of goats, rabbits and more to teach children how to take care of and appreciate them. There are plans to put in new administration block, reception area, offices, pet store, gift shop, restaurants, audio-visual room, and provided more exotic animals. Mr. Robinson informs that the operators took the decision to open the facility to the public, even while the improvement work is underway. “Some might say it would have been good to just close and reopen with a big bang. We felt that we would have a great impact nonetheless because its buzzing; word of mouth is spreading and people are coming and saying yes, we are improving….I was here last week and last month, and the following month, something else has happened…..so it has worked for us and we didn’t want to close the facility and stop people from coming,” Mr. Robinson says. He tells JIS News that a key element in the redevelopment project is to protect the welfare of the animals. “We had to move away from the concrete and the bars and try to soften them with plants and focus on the whole aspect of landscaping so that they simulate a real life experience for the animals,” Mr. Richards states. “A person will come and they will see an animal and there is so much that they will be able to learn about it and how to appreciate and respect them when they see them in the wild, rather than just abuse them and be afraid,” he adds. Ms. Gandretti, tells JIS News that the operators of the zoo want patrons to be able to appreciate and enjoy what is on offer, and help to preserve its offerings. “We don’t encourage playing of football and all of those ball type games, because it can disturb the animals. Another thing is we prefer if persons don’t throw stones at the crocodiles,” Miss Gandretti says. Hope Zoo is open from Mondays to Sundays from 6:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. and from 10:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on public holidays. Persons can call the offices at 927-2888 to find out about entrance fees or to book the property for parties, tours or other events.