Manchester United top world football money list

first_imgManchester United have retained their position as the highest revenue-generating football club in the world, edging out Spain’s Real Madrid by the narrowest margin ever between the top two.The Premier League club topped the Deloitte Football Money League for the 10th time by posting a revenue for the 2016-17 season of 676.3 million euros, 1.7 million euros more than the reigning European champions.Barcelona were third on 648.3 million euros.The combined revenue for the top 20 highest-earning clubs rose by six per cent to a record 7.9 billion euros.The top 20 was made up of 10 English clubs, who were boosted by the fact that 2016-17 was the first season of the current Premier League broadcast rights deal.The remaining 10 clubs comprised of three each from Spain, Germany and Italy and one from France. Seven-time European champions AC Milan dropped out of the top 20 for the first time.The 44.5 million euros United received from UEFA for their victory over Ajax Amsterdam in the 2017 Europa League final was crucial to retaining their number one status, although broadcast revenue is now the largest individual revenue stream for the top 20, accounting for 45 per cent.Dan Jones, partner in the Sports Business Group at Deloitte, said: “United’s ability to retain first position is all the more impressive against the backdrop of the weakened pound against the euro, and with both Real Madrid and FC Barcelona forecasting further revenue growth in 2017-18, the battle at the top will likely come down to on-pitch performance again next year.“With all three clubs through to the Round of 16 of the UEFA Champions League, it may be as simple as the club that goes furthest in the competition will have the best chance of topping the Money League next year.”Big movers include former Premier League champions Leicester City, who climbed from 20th last year to 14th, and Southampton, who enter the top 20 for the first time in 18th position. Both were boosted by playing in European competitions last season.Elsewhere, Inter Milan climbed four places to 15th thanks largely to commercial growth following their takeover by Chinese company Suning Holdings Group.last_img read more

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Balkan 2030 World Cup bid ‘is realistic’

first_imgA bid by Balkan countries to host the 2030 Fifa World Cup would have a realistic chance because the governments of Bulgaria, Greece, Serbia and Romania would offer support for the joint candidature, Bulgaria’s Sports Minister Krasen Kralev said on Wednesday.No Balkan nation has hosted the World Cup and last month’s announcement raised eyebrows given the poor sports infrastructure in the region but former long-distance runner Kralev said it was an achievable target.“Оur bid is completely realistic, we are aware that we have to meet a number of FIFA criteria,” the 51-year-old Kralev told Reuters. “Let us remind you that Russia also began building the necessary sports infrastructure after being named host of the 2018 World Cup.”The Balkan quartet will also bid to host the European championship in 2028, hoping that would give them a chance to improve or build new stadiums.Kralev said that Greece had already announced it would modernise its Olympic stadium while Serbia planned to build a new 60,000-capacity stadium.He said Bulgaria was considering investing some 30-40 million levs ($40.61 million) to renovate the Vasil Levski Stadium and construct a new national stadium in the capital Sofia and two more grounds in other cities.“The joint bid is an important political sign,” Kralev said. “It shows that the Balkan countries will work together not only in the field of sport but will jointly stand up for their common political and economic interests.“This is what FIFA is looking for – a political and economic stability. This is the most important thing after the infrastructure.”World governing body FIFA is not expected to decide the 2030 hosts before 2022, when the World Cup goes to Qatar.A South American bid involving Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay has already been announced. Morocco, which has made five unsuccessful bids to host the tournament including 2026, has also said it would try again for 2030 and could be joined by Algeria and Tunisia.The English Football Association has announced plans to conduct a feasibility study into a joint bid with Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. The Irish FA said it would join them in exploring the potential bid.HUGE PROFITSThe 2026 World Cup will be hosted jointly by the United States, Mexico and Canada and Kralev said that the Balkan neighbours already had an example to follow.“Investments in the construction of roads, airports and sports infrastructure lead to huge profits for each country,” he said.“Calculation showed that the forecast revenues for the 2026 tournament were $14 billion while spending was expected to be around $3 billion.“And since final requirements for the 2030 World Cup will be prepared by FIFA no earlier than 2020, we decided to look at the working plan of Canada, USA and Mexico.”Local media and pundits, including former European Footballer of the Year Hristo Stoichkov, have poured scorn on the bid, saying the Balkan states did not have the financial muscle to compete with richer countries.The four countries would discuss the bid in Belgrade on Dec. 21-22, Kralev said, adding that Bulgaria might consider bidding to host another major soccer championship if the 2030 candidature failed.“If we build the infrastructure needed to host the 2030 World Cup, we can apply for each subsequent championship,” he said. “The built infrastructure can be used in the future.”Bulgaria, home to seven million people, is also preparing a bid to host the Winter Youth Olympics in 2024 after receiving encouragement from International Olympic Committee (IOC) President Thomas Bach.“The Bulgarian candidacy enjoys serious top-level support at the IOC. Personally, Thomas Bach encouraged us to apply for the Youth Olympics when he came to Bulgaria and saw how we organised at the same time three world championships in Olympic sports,” Kralev said.During Bach’s September visit, Bulgaria hosted world championships in rowing, rhythmic gymnastics and volleyball.last_img read more

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Division, distrust and fear now pervade Guyana Police Force

first_imgDear Editor,A report in another section of the media (Sept. 17, 2017) screamed, “Seelall must go: Sanction Ramnarine”. Why? Because, according to the report, Commissioner of Police, Seelall Persaud, “had improperly inserted himself into the investigation into the alleged plot although he was on leave.”Assistant Commissioner David Ramnarine, on the other hand, reportedly “failed to ensure proper probe while acting as top cop.”Paul Slowe, a former Assistant Commissioner of Police with a seeming grouse against the Guyana Police Force, its top leadership, and the former Government, has pelted the mega stone. He came out with vengeance, venom, and unreserved bias, which were obvious from day one of the CoI. He is long suspected to be an active behind-the-scenes advisor to the PNC, and the perfect hatchet man to ensure preconceived political objectives are achieved.On what limb does the accusation against Commissioner Persaud stands? Is it a fact that he was on leave? The answer is yes. Is it a fact that he became involved in the matter? Again the answer is yes. Then did he obstruct justice, improperly insert himself into the investigation, or in any way compromise the investigation? The answer is that he could not have. Why? Because the power and authority at all material times remain vested in him, even though he was on leave!Let’s consult Article 211 (c) of the Constitution.  It states, “If the office of the Commissioner of Police is vacant, or the holder thereof is unable to perform the functions of his or her office, a person may be appointed to act in that office…”  A legal luminary forcefully concluded that none of the above applied to the office of the Commissioner of Police or the person of the Commissioner of Police, therefore a Deputy Commissioner could not have been appointed to act in that office. Neither was the office of the Commissioner of Police vacant, nor was the Commissioner disabled from performing the functions of Commissioner.  Authority, therefore, still resides in the Commissioner of Police.Further, Article 228 (2) of the Constitution continues to provide guidance and clarity. “Where by this Constitution a power is conferred upon any person or authority to make any appointment to any public office, a person may be appointed to that office notwithstanding some other person may be holding that office when that person is on leave of absence pending the relinquishment of that office; and where two or more persons are holding the same office by reason of an appointment made under this paragraph, then for the purpose of function conferred upon the holder of that office, the last person appointed shall be deemed to be the sole holder thereof.”  What is the main element here? Leave of absence pending the relinquishment of the office of the Commissioner!Legal luminary again asserts that Commissioner of Police Persaud was not on leave of absence pending the relinquishment of the office of Commissioner! He remains the last and only holder of that office, even though he was on leave.Assistant Commissioner Ramnarine could not have been appointed under Article 228 (2) to the office of Commissioner of Police. Therefore, he was never Commissioner of Police while Commissioner of Police Seelall Persaud was on leave. As such, the power and authority of Commissioner remained vested in Seelall Persaud at all material times. It follows therefore that notwithstanding Commissioner of Police Seelall Persaud was on leave, he had at all material times the administrative power and authority to act in accordance with the powers vested in him.Therefore, he could not have improperly inserted himself into any investigation, as reported by the State newspaper. One would dare say it was his duty to ensure justice is done following the rule of law.Assistant Commissioner Ramnarine, though a good administrator, cast his bet on the wrong side of the coalition. Maybe he’ll repose in the knowledge that at the TSU Square, all dressed in AFC colours, he championed the cause of change, and then regaled in victory at the same square with the words, “Is a-we time now.” Like his political friends, he is now learning that the PNC plays hard ball in diabolical ways. He is now caught in the middle, a victim of the power struggle between the dominant PNC and the subservient AFC. Wherever his career takes him will be dependent on the outcome of the power struggle within the PNC+AFC.The plot unfolds in a surreal spectacle, deja vu, a replay of history. “After the 1968 election, Burnham began to purge Indo-Guyanese from the GDF officer corps. By 1970, Afro-Guyanese dominated both the officer and the enlisted ranks of the GDF.  The ruling PNC began using political and ethnic criteria in selecting officer cadets… attempted both to consolidate and expand the loyalty of the GDF by manipulating racial symbols and by materially rewarding loyal soldiers … 1973 an aide to Forbes Burnham openly advocated that the GDF pledge its allegiance to the PNC…This recommendation was made policy the following year. Although the recommendation was unpopular among career officers, disagreement was not voiced openly for fear…” (Guyana and Belize Country Studies: Federal Research Division (Library of Congress) Edited by Tim Merrill. Jan. 1992).   Obsessed with control, the aide to Burnham truly walks in the footsteps of his deceased master.Albeit, it is now the Guyana Police Force in which he plays out his role as President and Commander-in-Chief, with Paul Slowe as his surrogate advisor/hatchet man. The resultant effect, however, is unparalleled damage to the Guyana Police Force. Division, distrust and fear now pervade among the officer corps. Esprit de corps has been savaged, sacrificed on the altar of executive lawlessness in the guise of a Commission of Inquiry, the outcome of which would appear to have already been determined.Romesh V. Singhrailast_img read more

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What happens if constitutionally due elections are not held?

first_imgDear Editor,If National and Regional Elections are not held by March 21, 2019 — as ruled by the Chief Justice (Ag) — and there is no two-thirds majority (by the way, what number is two-thirds of 65?) vote in Parliament for elections to be deferred beyond the date stipulated above — as outlined under Article 106 (7) of the Constitution of Guyana — will the new elections be deemed unconstitutional?Will the new Government formed by the party which wins the elections be deemed illegal? What will be the constitutional issue/s if any?I am no expert as it relates to Constitutional Law. I do not have the competence to debate complex legal issues. I am only an ordinary layman; but, as a citizen of Guyana, my conscious is pricking me. I am wondering. Perhaps I am just a lonely wonderer. Let the confabulation continue.Yours faithfully,Clinton ConwayAssistantCommissioner ofPolice(Retired)last_img read more

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Ruimveldt man jailed for gun, ammo

first_imgA South Ruimveldt man was on Friday sentenced to four years in jail after he was found guilty of two counts of illegal gun and ammunition charges when he appeared in the Georgetown Magistrates’ Court before City Magistrate Judy Latchman.Nabadaninge Gobin, 33, of Lot 149 Aubrey Barker Street, South Ruimveldt, Georgetown, was charged for the illegal possession of a 9mm Gluck pistol and for having 13 rounds of live ammunition in his possession.Magistrate Latchman in her bid to use Goblin’s case an example, told the court that her ruling is based on the seriousness of the offence committed which is a direct result of the rampant spike in gun crimes nationwide.Gobin, who is a repeat offender, was also fined 0,000.last_img read more

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Aston Villa 0-2 Manchester City: Toure and Aguero magic saves stale champions

first_imgTwo late goals from Yaya Toure and Sergio Aguero rescued a stale Manchester City, who depended on their stars to seal a 2-0 win over a stubborn Aston Villa side at Villa Park.The result was harsh on the hosts, who had marshalled the defending champions superbly throughout the 90 minutes.Despite dominating proceedings there was a distinct lack of intensity in City’s play, but, while they squandered chance after chance in front of goal, all they needed was two pieces of magic to claim all three points.Toure was a largely anonymous figure during the game, but popped up when needed to curl a shot past Brad Guzan with eight minutes left, while Aguero – who hit the post earlier in the match – smashed in an unstoppable effort moments later to hand City their fourth victory of the season.Attending supporters saw very little action in a drab first-half, with neither team landing a shot on target.City started the better, though, and were denied by the woodwork early on when Aleksandar Kolorov’s rasping drive nicked the outside of the post.The Serb was perhaps Manuel Pellegrini’s brightest performer in the first 45 minutes, though his team-mates couldn’t give the finish his whipped crosses and penetrating passes in and around the box deserved.Edin Dzeko was next to squander a chance, firing over from close-range, but Villa didn’t sit back and proved lively on the counter, with Toure having to bolt into his own box to deny Andreas Weimann from getting his shot away.Defender Nathan Baker was also a constant thorn in City’s side, as his well-timed tackles thwarted the likes of Aguero, Dzeko and the impressive David Silva, and while City did have a flurry of chances on the stroke of half-time, Paul Lambert’s men managed to hold on.The Premier League holders came quickly out of the half-time blocks, with Aguero twice going close and once hitting the post with an arrowed hit, though Villa maintained pressure themselves with another swift counter-attacking move.The game’s first shot on target came from Silva, who swivelled in the box before getting his shot away, though Guzan was equal to the Spain international’s effort.That effort seemed to boost City’s confidence as they began to pepper Villa’s box, with Pellegrini’s men registering a hearty 27 efforts on goal.Villa weren’t out of it though, and Lambert may have been left to curse Charles N’Zogbia’s lack of vision as, having bamboozled defenders with a bustling run, he failed to pick out Weimann in acres of space on the edge of the box and eventually ran down a blind alley.But the Blues continued to pile forward, with centre-back Eliaquim Mangala testing Guzan with a power header, and their patience was rewarded with two quick goals in the last ten minutes as the Villans’ plucky resistance finally relented.Toure has so far failed to rediscover his best form since a summer of wild speculation over his future, but this was a classic finish from the Ivorian powerhouse as he ran into a rare gap in Villa’s defence and tucked a neat shot past the American stopper.And the game was put well a truly to bed two minutes from time, Aguero this time finding himself in a patch of space near the box and firing an arrowed strike into the top corner for his 81st goal for the club.It was a cruel finale for Aston Villa, who no doubt deserved more from the game, but City’s expensively assembled side eventually came out trumps as they closed the gap on table topping Chelsea to just two points. 1 Man City striker Sergio Aguero last_img read more

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Season of dry anxiety

first_imgMeanwhile, the Department of Water and Power has cleared dry brush from all its major properties, including the Encino and Chatsworth reservoirs, and lots in Franklin Canyon, Stone Canyon, Hollywood and Pacific Palisades. Clearance is key Work at a handful of 31 smaller properties is scheduled to be completed next week, LADWP spokesman Joe Ramallo said. Officials stepped up efforts after a downed power line in Franklin Canyon sparked a fire that charred three homes in April. “We take brush clearance very seriously and we work very cooperatively with the Fire Department to ensure our properties are cleared by their crews,” Ramallo said. But some people still don’t seem to get the message. Just over the weekend, firefighters in Benedict Canyon responded to reports of someone burning trash in a backyard. And the LAFD has received at least 36 reports of illegal burning just this month. “They need to be more careful and not just consider what they’re doing, but consider the community,” McKnight said. “You’re not supposed to burn your trash. You’re not supposed to burn your yard waste. But we still find people doing things like that.” As hot, dry and windy conditions forced a second day of a red-flag warning over Los Angeles County on Wednesday, the parched region experienced three small fires – a blaze in Sunland charred 10 acres; a fire in the Santa Clarita Valley burned about 3 acres; and a grass fire burned briefly near Bel Air Presbyterian Church in the Sepulveda Pass. The red-flag warning was expected to continue until 9 tonight. But the looming wildfire threat will linger for many, including Ana Bebekian of Stevenson Ranch. When flames raged along the dry hills cradling her upscale community in 2003, Bebekian and her husband took photographs and video of their home before fleeing with their two young children. “We’ve just been really careful and afraid,” she said. She pointed across the street. “This whole hill was burned.” Meanwhile, dry brush filled trash cans and Dumpsters along Running Horse Road in Placerita Canyon, where the 6,000-acre Foothill Fire roared through in 2004. Defensible space The neighborhood “was like an island; both sides of it were burning,” said Ken Price, a retired studio prop maker. Price said he spends at least an hour a week now clearing brush around his property. For firefighters, that 200-foot buffer between a home and brush is the difference between survival and tragedy. “It gives firefighters a defensible space for the home, and a space to retreat in case the fire gets away,” McKnight said. “If you live in a very high-hazard zone, you have to clear your brush.” An early start In Los Angeles County, Brown said officials this year began brush clearance inspections in January – two months before the typical start in March. “The field moisture is extremely low,” Brown said. “If a fire gets going, it could be really serious.” The LAFD also conducts inspections, but McKnight said homeowners shouldn’t wait until a fire inspector is at their door. “If you live in those areas, you know already what needs to be done,” McKnight said. In Benedict Canyon, resident Cory Wellman, 57, said she can still picture the dense black smoke that covered the region when a fire raged on the hill across from her last year. For her, every driver along the windy road with a cigarette dangling from the window spells trouble. “It is always scary,” she said. “And people are really concerned. … Fire season here – there’s no beginning and no end. It’s just constant.” Staff Writer Brandon Lowrey contributed to this story. eugene.tong@dailynews.com (818) 546-3304 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! With today’s official start of summer and a record dry year, some hillside residents’ and fire officials’ nerves are increasingly on edge as they confront what has seemed like an endless, year-round fire season in Southern California. Since July, Los Angeles has received a scant 3.21 inches of rain, and wildfires – including the nearly 1,000-acre blaze that burned a quarter of Griffith Park last month – have increased from 296 in the first six months of last year to more than 2,100 so far this year. “There has not been a break,” said Capt. Antoine McKnight, a Los Angeles Fire Department spokesman. “The fire season has been one continuous one. We just have to be very vigilant.” Capt. Mike Brown of the Los Angeles County Fire Department agreed. Officials have augmented crews stationed in the Santa Clarita and Antelope valleys, he said. “The faster you attack a fire, the less time it has to spread,” McKnight said. Firefighters trying to show homeowners the do’s and dont’s of brush-fire protection could simply point to Rodney Kemerer’s backyard in Benedict Canyon. On the hill behind Kemerer’s house, a 200-foot-wide fire break dotted with water sprinklers extends across the length of his property – the recommended barrier between brush and structures in this hilly area between Studio City and Beverly Hills. But thick, tinder-dry vegetation covers the same slope behind Kemerer’s neighbor’s house, posing a serious fire risk. “It’s the flip of a cigarette,” Kemerer, vice president of the Benedict Canyon Association, said Wednesday. “It’s an easy ignition point, and it becomes an example to the rest of the community. If that guy didn’t clear it, why should I?” last_img read more

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A network of support

first_imgKelson also said resources like the society’s 24-hour help line can answer questions about the disease or life with cancer, and long-term resources are available for those who have survived their illness. “ACS has a survivor network,” Kelson said. “They can actually go online and communicate with other survivors. Also we have survivors just stay in the support groups and become a support to others.” Dr. Nathan Honda, medical director for the Ruby L. Golleher Cancer Program at Intercommunity Presbyterian, said the services of the American Cancer Society are underused, but he hears of the benefits they give to patients from the many doctors he works with. “A lot of the oncologists I work with, the medical oncologists, stated that they have seen a positive impact with patients,” Honda said. Honda said awareness of all that is offered is critical for the community. “We just wanted to spread the news and create awareness of the hospital’s partnership with the American Cancer Society,” Honda said. One unique service offered through the partnership is the Mariposa Boutique, which specializes in fitting women with prostheses after mastectomies, as well as providing wigs, jewelry, purses and even lingerie in the store. Debbie Nunez-Lowis of Chino Hills is the coordinator for the boutique. A longtime resident of the Whittier area, Nunez-Lowis worked for the hospital as a financial counselor for the maternity ward, but heard about an opening to head the boutique. She earned certifications in fitting prostheses and took over the boutique, in part because of her mother, a 20-year breast cancer survivor. “Because my mother had breast cancer, I wanted to get involved,” Nunez-Lowis said. “This was an opportunity for me to get involved more.” Nunez-Lowis has been with the boutique for seven years. Mariposa has a cozy shop atmosphere that makes it a kind of oasis after time in the hospital, Nunez-Lowis said. Being fitted for a prosthesis or learning how to dress a new body can be intimidating and sad for women, and Nunez-Lowis makes it her goal to make the experience one of healing. “One of the roles of the center is that we are usually one of the first people to see a woman after surgery,” Nunez-Lowis said. “Lots of times, they haven’t even looked at themselves. We are able to reassure them about how beautiful they still look.” Nunez-Lowis calls the underclothes and accessories the boutique provides “non-surgical reconstruction,” and partners with the American Cancer Society to help patients who cannot afford to pay for products in the boutique on their own. “I know that if a patient comes in and they are unable to purchase a wig, we can refer them to the American Cancer Society,” Nunez-Lowis said. “We also let them know about programs like Look Good … Feel Better.” Most support groups and activities for patients with cancer through the society are led by social workers, but volunteers also staff the office at the hospital and help with many activities. Lorraine Tibbets is a retiree who volunteers at the American Cancer Society one day each week. Tibbets said she helps with a variety of activities at the office at Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital, including making spreadsheets, answering questions for those who come in and helping with activities put on by the center, like makeup tips for women with cancer. For Tibbets, the job is all about helping those who come to her in search of help. “We’re here mainly to work with the patients,” Tibbets said. “So many people have come in here and said they couldn’t believe what we do here, and for free.” Tibbets said that while many with cancer believe they can rely on family for support, some find themselves needing someone outside the situation to talk to. “People are afraid and they become very emotional,” Tibbets said. “We find that patients can’t talk to their families because it upsets the families and the patients don’t want them to worry. It allows them to unload and heal their mind as well as their body.” To contact the American Cancer Society about services offered at Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital in Whittier, call their 24-hour hot line at (800) 227-8345. news.wdn@sgvn.com (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3015 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! • Video: Counseling and support services for cancer patients Cancer. For many, the diagnosis is more than an illness; it is the beginning of a struggle that will touch every aspect of their life. But according to the American Cancer Society, most cancer patients in the Los Angeles area do not take advantage of the services offered to help them with their multi-faceted needs. According to the American Cancer Society, about 26 percent of patients in Los Angeles take advantage of the programs they offer, while 74 percent choose to cope alone. For patients at Presbyterian Intercommunity Hospital in Whittier, however, no one needs to brave cancer on their own. The facility is one of just a handful of hospitals that houses its own American Cancer Society office, where volunteers and social workers offer myriad services to patients battling all forms of cancer. Services include support groups for the families of patients, an all-male support group for those with prostate cancer, a special support group for women with breast cancer that features a chance to talk with survivors, and “Look Good … Feel Better,” a service that teaches female patients beauty techniques to restore their looks during treatments that often mean hair loss and skin problems. Rosa Kelson is the director of Health Programs for the American Cancer Society for the Long Beach area. She said the support groups help people meet others who have had similar experiences. “I think it helps because newly diagnosed people like to talk to someone who has been there, who really understands what they’re going through,” Kelson said. last_img read more

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Fiorentina star ‘waiting for offers’ amid reported interest from Chelsea

first_img Milan Badelj in action for Fiorentina 1 Chelsea target Milan Badelj is ‘waiting for offers’, according to his agent.The midfielder’s contract with Fiorentina expires in under 18 months time and he is ready to leave for a new challenge.Chelsea have been linked with the Croatian over the past six months, while he is also a target for AC Milan and Roma.And now the 27-year-old’s agent, Joksimovic, has revealed he will be standing by his phone waiting for bids as the transfer deadline draws ever closer.“Over the last two days of the transfer window I will be in Milan waiting for offers, but at the moment there is nothing concrete,” Joksimovic told ForzaRoma.info.last_img read more

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Healthcare plan puts UCT students in line for Hult Prize

first_imgBongani Siamtinta, Bachelor of Business Science student. (Image: Bongani Siamtinta)• Bongani SiamtintaBachelor of Business Science studentUniversity of Cape Town+27(0)83 505 7236 bongani.j.siamtinta@gmail.com • Healthcare in South Africa• Universal healthcare for SA? • Bridging the public healthcare gap • Universal healthcare plan on track Aneshree NaidooA team of six University of Cape Town (UCT) students has submitted a project for the Hult Prize, which this year has issued a challenge to address global healthcare.The students – Hlaka Mamabolo, Noah de Villiers, Chiedza Museredza, Barnabas Sungayi, Patrice Madurai and Bongani Siamtinta – propose that a better record-keeping system is a key aspect in providing better healthcare. Their idea has got them as far as the regional finals, and the team will be competing in London on March 7 and 8.They built their idea out of an observation by the World Health Organization (WHO). In its South Africa Country Co-operation Strategy 2008 – 2013, the WHO points out: “The health profile suggests that in South Africa, health policy and systems strengthening, maternal, child and adolescent health, HIV and Aids, tuberculosis, malaria, and road traffic accidents require priority attention.”Social entrepreneurshipThe Hult Prize invites the world’s brightest college and university students to help solve the world’s most pressing issues through social entrepreneurship. It is the world’s largest student competition, with teams competing in six cities: Boston, San Francisco, London, Dubai, Shanghai and Sao Paulo. The regional winners enter an incubator programme, where they receive mentorship and strategic planning advice. During this time, they create prototypes and set up to launch their business. The overall winner receives $1-million seed capital towards their business.Siamtinta, who is in his fourth year of a Bachelor of Business Science degree in quantitative management, explains the thinking behind the team’s proposal: “We live in an age where keeping health records for patients is no longer done via the file system. Now we have the ability to use cloud storage and this ensures that health records are kept safe and can easily be accessed.”Their proposal focuses on how healthcare record-keeping has become more sophisticated.“Cloud-based record-keeping is better because it allows health care providers to have patient history on the go. It’s easier to share information on a global scale, and with the network of health care workers all working together with this information they can easily come up with an ideal treatment plan for patients. This idea is based on the old adage that ‘two heads are better than one’ and given the technology available, solutions are supposed to be more effective and efficient,” says Siamtinta.“If cloud-based storage became a standard for securing patient history, this would make it imperative for local municipalities to include in their budgets expenditure to invest in technology so that primary healthcare providers can do their job effectively. This is why we also need to raise awareness about the problem of healthcare provision, to make public servants aware that they have to serve all the needs of their constituents. In so doing, every key partner involved in improving the health care provision to informal settlements is an active citizen and making their communities and ultimately their country better.”Specific details of their idea are being kept confidential until the competition winner is announced. It rests on the students believing that with a medical history, better treatment can be administered. The team also believes that social entrepreneurship can change the world, as “enterprise signals the imperative to drive social change”. They count social entrepreneur Daphne Nederhorst, the founder of Sawa World, as an inspiring figure in the field. Sawa World works with local communities to decide on the best entrepreneurial solutions to their problems.Young leaders with a global impactMamabolo, who is in his second year of a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering, talks about being selected to compete in the Hult Prize regional finals. “This platform allows us to solve problems faced in our rural setting in South Africa and globally. We are excited and well-prepared to compete with our friends from prestigious universities globally to solve social issues surrounding healthcare.“I think that this competition shows the world that as students we are not only concerned about getting a degree and leaving to big companies. We are an example of young leaders who are dedicated to having a global impact,” he adds.His colleague, De Villiers, is completing his Bachelor of Business Science degree in economics and law. “Being regional finalists in the Hult Prize 2014 has provided us with a unique opportunity to be involved in addressing one of the most complex challenges hindering growth and development in Africa,” he says. “Our team’s idea is unique in its own right, providing a comprehensive incentive to sufferers with an NCD [non-communicable disease] to get treated and be healthier.”The team is excited about competing with international students. Museredza, a final year Bachelor of Law student, says: “I’m ecstatic and also a little anxious. It’s exciting to be chosen; however, we’ve only made it if we actually go to London. I’m hoping society at large chips in to help us fly the African flag high.”Madurai is in his third year of a Bachelor of Commerce degree in management studies, while Sungayi is in his third year of a Bachelor of Commerce degree in financial accounting.The students need at least R66 150 to fund their trip to compete in London. They are sourcing sponsors and private donations. In keeping with the competition’s entrepreneurial bent, regional finalists are expected to raise their own funds to compete in the regional rounds.The Hult PrizeAn initiative of Ahmed Ashkar, who is the chief executive, the Hult Prize was set up in 2009 by Swedish-born billionaire entrepreneur Bertil Hult, who also founded the world’s largest private education provider, EF Education First. In an interview with Fox News, Ashkar said: “As a business student, I thought that if my peers around the world could also understand what it meant to do good, do well, help the poor make money, that we could essentially turn this problem on its head and tip the market.”The Hult Prize was a response to the global financial crisis that started at the end of 2007, which raised concerns about ethical businesses practices. It encourages business students to propose ethical ideas to tackle social problems such as poverty and energy provision. It supports social entrepreneurship, an ethos that encourages entrepreneurs to consider the social benefits of their business ventures.Working with former US president Bill Clinton and his Clinton Global Initiative, each year the Hult Prize sets a challenge for students to address. Established in 2005, the Clinton Global Initiative, an initiative of the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation, “convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges”.Previous challenges include tackling education provision, housing and energy, and providing clean water for people in need. This year’s challenge is “to build sustainable and scalable social enterprises to address non-communicable disease in urban slums”. The competition estimates that about 250 million people live without adequate healthcare in urban slums.Clinton has lauded the competition, saying: “The Hult Prize is a wonderful example of the creative co-operation needed to build a world with shared opportunity, shared responsibility, and shared prosperity, and each year I look forward to seeing the many outstanding ideas the competition produces.”The Hult family provides the annual $1-million in seed capital awarded to the winner.Sponsors who want to help the UCT team get to London can contact Siamtinta on bongani.j.siamtinta@gmail.com, or call him on +27 (0)83 505 7236.last_img read more

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