Afinitas Limited (AFS.bw) listed on the Botswana Stock Exchange under the Investment sector has released it’s 2016 interim results for the half year.For more information about Afinitas Limited (AFS.bw) reports, abridged reports, interim earnings results and earnings presentations, visit the Afinitas Limited (AFS.bw) company page on AfricanFinancials.Document: Afinitas Limited (AFS.bw) 2016 interim results for the half year.Company ProfileAfinitas Limited, list on the Botswana Stock Exchange, is a pan-African investment holding company which operates in three sectors; event management, financial services and asset management. Afinitas Limited is a subsidiary of GCH Investments Limited. Afinitas Limited is an asset management company which provides seed capital for new business development in Botswana. The company is accredited by the Botswana International Financial Services Center (IFSC). Africa Events Limited is a specialist events management division which owns the rights to the Africa Financial Services Investment Conference (AFSIC). This event is held annually in London and is attended by a diverse spectrum of investors, dealmakers and financial services companies that target and service the African continent. Ethiopia Investments Limited is a permanent capital vehicle which was established by EQOS Global, a business process outsourcing company based in Addis Ababa which owns investments and develops new business in Ethiopia.
Check out the highlights from Racing Métro v Grenoble below! All smiles: Grenoble celebrate victory over Toulon before defeating Johnny Sexton’s Racing Métro in OctoberBy Gavin Mortimer AN OSCAR for James Hart, but this one came with no tears, tantrum or tedious acceptance speech. The Oscar given to the 22-year-old Grenoble scrum-half was from Midi Olympique, the French rugby newspaper voting him his Player of the Week in the last round of the Top 14 before the tournament took a European break.It was an accolade well merited. Hart scored 16 points for Grenoble in their 22-20 defeat of Racing Métro, a victory all the more astonishing as the mountain men won away in Paris. No one was happier for the Irish-born Hart than Bernard Jackman, the Grenoble defence coach, whose association with the scrum-half goes back a decade to Clontarf.Hart of gold: James was brought up in Dublin“In all the years I’ve been involved in rugby I’ve never seen anyone work as hard as James does,” says Jackman, the former Connacht, Leinster and Ireland hooker. “I remember seeing him with a bag of balls when he was about 13, practising, practising. A lot of people thought he was crazy, just chasing a forlorn dream, but that work ethic has got him where he is today.”Hart is a driven individual, a man who trains meticulously, doesn’t drink and, according to Jackman, has about every Jonny Wilkinson training manual going. A psychologist might speculate that Hart’s inner tougher comes from the loss of his father when he was on the cusp of adolescence, a shattering experience from which he emerged all the stronger.Hart’s father was a proud Irishman, his mother, Patricia, is a proud Frenchwoman from Toulouse, and a tough one at that. “I have such huge respect for my mum,” says Hart. “When my dad passed away she went back to work to the look after the three of us (Hart has two sisters). And I was pretty hard to handle as a kid but she did a great job. It was she who taught me that in life if you want something, you must go and get it.”So that’s what Hart did with his rugby. Though he had a stint with Leinster Under 20s, that was about as good as it got in Ireland. So he returned to Clontarf and eventually got a call from Jackman inviting him to the Grenoble youth academy. Why not? thought Hart. He could speak the language, he knew the culture and so off he went. “The whole French approach is different,” explains Hart, who came off the bench in Grenoble’s Amlin cup defeat to Bayonne last week. “People are emotional. They scream and shout before a game and that can be a shock if you’re not used to it. But I know how the French react and that’s been a great help.”Like many French scrum-halves, Hart has played a bit at 10, but Jackman says his game is very much in the Irish style, despite the fact he’s a goal-kicking No 9. “He’s more game management-orientated. His natural instinct is tactical.” Hart agrees but adds that his style is evolving at Grenoble. “In Ireland I was more of a passing nine but I’m taking it on more in France, helped by the fact my speed and vision have really come on at Grenoble.”Racing can vouch for that, Jonathan Sexton in particular, who probably didn’t expect to see a 22-year-old unknown get top billing. Hart had hoped to have a chat with Sexton after the Racing game but the big man wasn’t in the mood for banter after such an ignominious defeat. Not to worry, he found Ronan O’Gara much more approachable and even got the Racing kicking coach to pose for a photo. “That was a big thrill,” says Hart. “I’ve admired Ronan for a long time so to have him say he was very impressed with my kicking was great.”Hart found out about his ‘Oscar’ on the Monday after the game. The Grenoble squad were off on a team-bonding day and someone opened his copy of Midi Olympique and there was Hart, singled out as the star of the week. Needless to say his mates all had a good laugh, bowing down before the new star among them.Jackman is confident Hart can handle his new found fame. In the days following his Oscar he did a raft of interviews for the Irish media and handled each one like a seasoned pro. One question that kept cropping up was his allegiance? If given the chance would he wear the green of Ireland?“The funny thing is up until I was about 12 I always supported France in everything,” says Hart, when the strictly neutral Rugby World posed the question. “Then as I got older I became more patriotic towards Ireland.“Obviously I don’t want to get ahead of myself, because I’m not even first-choice for Grenoble at the moment, but if in the future France approached me and Ireland have never given me a thought, I wouldn’t say no.”But there’s a long time to go before that might happen. Scrum-half is one position where the French have strength in depth, and Ireland aren’t exactly short in the department. For the time being Hart’s happy to try and fill his mantelpieces with more Oscars. LATEST RUGBY WORLD MAGAZINE SUBSCRIPTION DEALS
United States Year: “COPY” Photographs The Bryant Tower / David Chipperfield Architects CopyAbout this officeDavid Chipperfield ArchitectsOfficeFollow#TagsProjectsBuilt ProjectsSelected ProjectsMixed Use ArchitectureResidential ArchitectureHousingApartmentsNew YorkOn InstagramOn FacebookUnited StatesPublished on April 30, 2021Cite: “The Bryant Tower / David Chipperfield Architects” 30 Apr 2021. ArchDaily. Accessed 10 Jun 2021.
The Supreme Court on May 16 separated the consolidated case of Zubik v. Burwell and referred nine similar cases back to nine appellate courts. The courts were directed to arrive at a consensus about whether or not religiously affiliated nonprofits must pay for contraceptive coverage as mandated by the Affordable Care Act. Originally, eight appeals courts voted against the nonprofits’ claim, allowing coverage, and one voted to uphold the claim. Now the nine courts of appeal are required to come to a unanimous decision.The religious nonprofits’ argument is that the opt-out process for complying with the ACA’s requirement that employer-provided health insurance plans cover contraception as preventive care violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act.The high court’s ruling, called “per curium,” was agreed to by all eight judges. The court instructed the lower courts to accommodate “petitioners’ religious exercise while at the same time ensuring that women covered by petitioners’ health plans ‘receive full and equal health coverage, including contraceptive coverage.’” It affirmed the ACA mandate to provide women “without cost, the full range of FDA approved contraceptives.”Monica Moorehead speaking on International Women’s Day in New York.The justices also instructed the nonprofits that while litigation moves forward, the goal of the birth control benefit — to provide seamless contraceptive coverage — must remain in place. It also warned these enterprises not to further interrupt contraceptive coverage for their employees and students.Justice Sonia Sotomayor wrote a separate opinion, joined by Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, to provide further clarification: “The opinion does not, by contrast, endorse the petitioners’ position that the existing regulations substantially burden their religious exercise or that contraceptive coverage must be provided through a ‘separate policy, with a separate enrollment process.’ Such separate contraceptive-only policies do not currently exist, and the Government has laid out a number of legal and practical obstacles to their creation.” (Politico, May 16)This ruling is a legal sidestep in the battle over the ACA’s contraceptive mandate. Will the appeals courts be able to unite on a unanimous decision, ending the case, or will it come back to the court after a ninth justice is seated? Stay tuned.Abortion rights: bad news in some statesA bold, direct attack on the constitutional right to abortion was passed by the Oklahoma Legislature on May 19. The law would have made it illegal for doctors to perform abortions — which it called “unprofessional conduct” — except if needed to save the life of a pregnant woman. If physicians provided abortions, they would be found guilty of a felony and sentenced to one to three years in prison. They would also not be able to obtain a medical license in the state.Despite her opposition to abortion, Gov. Mary Fallin vetoed the bill on May 20, saying it was “so ambiguous and so vague” it couldn’t overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 Supreme Court decision legalizing abortion. (Washington Post, May 20)South Carolina legislators passed a bill on May 17 prohibiting abortions at 20 weeks after fertilization, which Gov. Nikki Haley is expected to sign. The final bill includes no exceptions for rape or incest, but has an exception if a patient’s medical emergency would lead to death or in cases of severe fetal malformation.The bill is based on copycat legislation authored by the National Right to Life Committee, which justifies the cutoff at 20 weeks based on the medically discredited belief that a fetus experiences pain at 20 weeks. Courts have struck down similar bills as unconstitutional in Arizona, Georgia and Idaho. Similar laws have passed in 17 states. (Rewire, May 18)On May 19, Louisiana joined Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Dakota and Utah in establishing a 72-hour waiting period for women seeking abortions. However, in a medical emergency, pregnant women will continue to be exempt from the mandatory waiting period and forced counseling passed in 2014. There is also an exception for women who certify in writing they live at least 150 miles from the nearest licensed clinic. They will be forced to wait a shorter delay of 24 hours. (Rewire, May 20)Catholic hospital sued for denial of careThe 41,000-member California Medical Association filed a motion April 27 in state Superior Court to join an American Civil Liberties Union lawsuit against the Catholic hospital chain Dignity Health, the fifth largest health care system in the country and the state’s largest hospital system. A patient was denied a tubal ligation in 2015 because Dignity Health refused to allow it based on religious directives from the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops which deny basic reproductive health care to patients. Sterilization was called “intrinsically evil.”A court hearing on CMA’s motion is set for May 25 in San Francisco. The doctors argue that forcing them to deny basic health care on the basis of religious objections creates a conflict between the medical well-being of patients and the hospital system. They also assert that withholding medical care for nonmedical reasons is illegal in California, and patient health is jeopardized when religious rules override medical judgment.This could turn into a major test case about the rights of Catholic-sponsored hospitals, which control 10 of the 25 largest hospital systems in the country, to impose their religious beliefs on patients. (Rewire, April 27)Crisis Pregnancy Centers ineffectiveA study released in early May by eKYROS, an anti-choice, Texas-based software company, showed that of the 2.6 million women who visited more than 1,200 anti-abortion Crisis Pregnancy Centers since 2004, only 3.52 percent, or 92,679 women, decided against having abortions.Twenty-two states currently provide some financial aid to CPCs. (Rewire, May 10)FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this
A pesar de las discusiones bilaterales en curso y acuerdos de beneficio mutuo entre EUA y Cuba después del anuncio del 17 de diciembre del 2014, por ambos países que restablecieron las relaciones diplomáticas, EUA ha continuado fondos y programas que promueven la intención de socavar y revertir las relaciones económicas socialistas elegidas por el pueblo cubano.El programa de radio haitiana wpfwfm.org Konbit Lakay reportó el 24 de septiembre, sobre la creciente crisis en la frontera mexicana, debido a la decisión de la administración Obama para rechazar a miles de refugiadas/os haitianos allí y para intensificar las deportaciones. El anfitrión comparó estas acciones hostiles a la condición preferencial concedida a los cubanos que entran a EUA.La Ley de Ajuste Cubano de 1966 considera automáticamente a todas/os los cubanos ser refugiados, se les ofrece beneficios sociales y estatus de residencia legal permanente después de permanecer un año en EUA. En 1995, EUA instituyó la política de pies secos/pies mojados, que establece que si las/os cubanos llegaron a la costa de Estados Unidos en barco serían considerados refugiados. Los que son interceptados en el mar serían devueltos a Cuba. La aplicación de la LAC y pies mojados/pies secos se aplica tanto a la discreción del presidente de EUA.Como Presidenta de Mujeres Haitianas de Miami, Marlein Bastie señaló que las condiciones en Haití son peores que las condiciones en Cuba.Otra constante violación de la soberanía de Cuba es el programa de Libertad Condicional Médica Cubana Profesional en vigor desde el 2006. (tinyurl.com/CMPPprogram) Totalmente a discreción del presidente, esta fuga de cerebros atrae a las/os profesionales de la medicina que disfrutaron de una educación gratuita en Cuba, a abandonar las misiones internacionalistas y venir a EUA. Muchas/os de los que aceptan el cebo encuentran que es muy difícil conseguir la licencia médica de Estados Unidos. (Newswork.org, 24 de marzo)Los dólares fiscales de Estados Unidos que se necesitan con urgencia para las necesidades humanas desde Flint-Michigan a las Apalaches, se asignan a los programas de subversión en Cuba, sin la aprobación o consentimiento de Cuba. La Agencia de los Estados Unidos para el Desarrollo Internacional informa: “el congreso de Estados Unidos asignó $55 millones para programas de Cuba, entre los años fiscales del 2009 al 2011; USAID manejó cerca de $31 millones de este monto, mientras que el Departamento de Estado manejó el resto. También, $20 millones han sido asignados para el año fiscal del 2012.” (1 de abril de 2011) La llamada Fundación Nacional para la Democracia asignó más de $3 millones en el 2015 solo. (Ned.org)Estos programas incluyen uno dirigido por el contratista de la USAID Alan Gross, que instala dispositivos de comunicación de grado militar en tres ciudades cubanas; la desaparecida operación de EUA de un sistema de comunicación de tipo Twitter, promovida a través de fachadas de negocios en terceros países para ocultar a los títeres estadounidenses; programas destinados a hip-hop cubano; y un programa de educación sobre el SIDA, que usa a jóvenes latinoamericanos para tratar de identificar a la juventud cubana abierta a la propaganda pro-capitalista.La juventud cubana se reunió para exponer el Programa de Aprendizaje Mundial-que suena inocente y el Programa de Liderazgo de Verano para la concesión a la juventud cubana, que es financiado por el Departamento de Estado de EUA. El 28 de septiembre los estudiantes en Santiago de Cuba y en Ciego de Ávila condenaron las maniobras del gobierno de Estados Unidos que intentan manipular a la juventud cubana. Un artículo publicado en Granma señala que estos proyectos están “dirigidos a la creación de supuestos líderes y agentes de cambio que no tienen nada en común con el proyecto social de la Revolución cubana …“El Presidente de la [Federación de Estudiantes Universitarios], Abel Mayea, afirmó categóricamente: “No hay motivos ocultos en las becas otorgadas. Está claro que nos quieren someter. Cuba no se opone a los intercambios, las cuales deben llevarse a cabo con respeto y con total apego a la institucionalidad. No serán capaces de ofrecer más de lo que la Revolución nos ha dado en 58 años.’”(29 de septiembre)La constitución cubana garantiza el derecho a la educación, y el 23 por ciento del presupuesto nacional de Cuba está dedicada a ella. Una pronto-a-ser licenciada en ingeniería civil señaló que “en estos cinco años nuestra Revolución ha garantizado todos mis estudios, de forma gratuita, por lo que no necesitamos ninguna beca de los EUA.”La Directora de Asuntos estadounidenses en Cuba, Josefina Vidal, dijo durante una sesión de Preguntas y Respuestas en Twitter, “Insistimos una vez más que la financiación de los programas destinados a provocar un cambio interno en Cuba debe ser eliminado, lo que sería un paso esencial hacia una relación normal”.Por el año 25avo consecutivo, la Asamblea General de las Naciones Unidas va a votar a favor de la resolución de Cuba: “La necesidad de poner fin al bloqueo económico, comercial y financiero impuesto por los EUA contra Cuba”.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this
Fallen freedom fighters, martyrs rememberedThe altar for Pablo Aceves in San Diego.San Diego — Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) is a traditional Mexican holiday dating back to precolonial history before the Spanish colonization in the 1500s. The currently celebrated Dia de los Muertos is an acculturated practice syncretizing elements of Indigenous culture and Mexican-Catholic traditions.A moment of remembrance, prayer, processions and altars are generally organized in recognition of family and friends who have died.Dia de los Muertos maintains a crucial importance throughout what some call Mexico de Afuera, the Mexican diaspora. This is certainly true in San Diego where Dia de los Muertos plays an important role in remembering the history of struggle by Chicanx people for dignity and self-determination.In San Diego, the Dia de los Muertos procession, organized by a collective of organizers at the Sherman Heights community center, honors family and friends and also remembers the multinational history of struggle in San Diego’s barrios, namely the conjoined struggle of Black and Brown people.Cultural resistanceThis year members of San Diego’s chapter of Brown Berets de Aztlan invited members of Workers World Party-San Diego and the Committee Against Police Brutality-San Diego to participate in the Procesion de Muertos on Nov. 2.Procesion de Muertos is a 1.5-mile walk from the Sherman Heights Community Center southwest to Chicano Park. This is the public space below the Coronado Bridge established as the result of a protracted struggle waged by Chicanx activists in opposition to the creation of a police station and the redistricted, gentrified “development” of the area, Logan Heights/Barrio Logan.On Nov. 2 thousands of Chicanx and Latinx families attended the gathering in Chicano Park. Brown Berets, Union del Barrio, an Aztec dancer and community activists participated in the procession to the park. There was even a delegation of Indigenous activists from South America, who were in town for a plenum being held at El Centro Cultural de la Raza. This is an affiliated community center a few miles north of Chicano Park in San Diego’s cultural hub of Balboa Park.The pillars holding up Coronado Bridge, which hovers over Chicano Park, are painted with a variety of heroes of Mexican, Chicanx and Latinx history, from Frida Kahlo to Che Guevara. On Nov. 2, these pillars, the center stage and most of the benches and plots in the park were adorned with altars to many who had fallen in a life of struggle.One altar recognized four victims of a 2016 car crash. There was public recognition of Brown and Black people killed by state violence. The altar to the fallen leaders of Union del Barrio stood out. Two of those remembered leaders were founding member Ernesto “Neto” Bustillos and the recently deceased Pablo Aceves.Chicanx activist rememberedAceves died on Sept. 29 at the age of 50. A stalwart fighter for social justice in San Diego, Aceves dedicated 31 years of his life to Union del Barrio. The longest serving member of UdB at the time he died, Aceves was a member of its Central Committee. A friend of WWP-SD and CAPB-SD, Aceves was unwavering in his support for all oppressed people and a serious proponent of Black-Brown unity.The author of this article remembers Aceves’ leadership in the San Diego No More Prisons Coalition as well as the struggle against police killing of unarmed Black and Brown people in the region. With a commitment by his family, friends and comrades to annually remember him with their altars on Dia de los Muertos in Chicano Park, Aceves will not be forgotten.FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this
By Raymond TylerIsrael set off a bomb on July 3 on the Iranian Natanz nuclear site, severely damaging a building integral to Iran’s nuclear power facility. The plan to attack the Iranian nuclear center had long been planned by the U.S. and Israel. (New York Times, July 10) The unprovoked attack is one in a series of U.S.-backed bipartisan attacks targeting the Iranian people. Despite soft criticism from the Democrats about the Trump administration’s war crimes, the two major political parties in the U.S. have supported the use of force against Iran. The Democrats’ main criticism of the Republican Party’s war crimes is that they lack a strategy and that Congress was not consulted. This criticism came after a U.S. airstrike killed Maj. Gen. Qassem Soleimani, a Iranian military official, in January. (vox.com, Jan. 3) A few Democratic members of Congress objected to that missile attack, including Reps. Rashida Tlaib and Ilhan Omar. Despite a brief New York Times article on July 5, the Pentagon’s attack on Iran has been secondary news compared to the constant coverage about the coming presidential election. Corporate-backed candidates clearly take precedence over the lives of poor and working people in the U.S. Israel’s recent attack is directly in line with U.S. foreign policy toward Iran and a continuation of Washington’s hostile actions against the sovereign country. The U.S. imposes horrific sanctions against Iran which are disastrous for its people. Bombs fall on the Middle Eastern country with no consequences to Pentagon officials who order the air strikes or to those who carry them out.Any defensive action that Iran takes when in the crosshairs of the imperialists is considered an act of “terrorism.” Yet the U.S. and its imperialist allies can bomb countries and wage wars as they are self-proclaimed “free and democratic” states. While working people in the U.S. lose their jobs, health care and homes, and even die due to the COVID-19 pandemic, imperialist aggression abroad has not ceased. It has actually increased, leading the U.S. in a familiar direction — to another war disguised as a “defensive action.” As always, when capitalists wage war, it is workers and oppressed people who suffer. The state of Israel acts as an imperialist stronghold against forces in the Middle East whom the U.S. deems enemies. The justification for Israeli and U.S. aggression is based on outright hypocrisy, to say the least. Washington and its allies can aim missiles and bombs at any country they choose to target. But if the countries defend themselves and fire back, that’s all the “justification” the U.S. needs to wage an invasion and all-out war.The U.S. and their allies continually send a clear, simple threatening message to Iran: “Stop existing and we’ll stop attacking.”FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare thisFacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmailPrintMoreShare this
Indiana corn production in 2012 totaled 597.0 million bushels, 29 percent below last year’s 839.5 million bushels. Corn acreage harvested for grain totaled 6.03 million, up 5 percent from 2011. The average yield of 99 bushels per acre is 47 bushels below the 146 produced in 2011. Indiana’s soybean production was 223.6 million bushels, down 7 percent from last year’s 240.7 million bushels. Harvested acreage is estimated at 5.14 million, down 3 percent from last year’s 5.29 million acres. The average yield of 43.5 bushels per acre was 2.0 bushels below the previous year’s average yield of 45.5. Final Numbers on Indiana 2012 Crop The 2012 winter wheat production totaled 1.65 billion bushels, up 10 percent from the previous year. The United States yield is 47.2 bushels per acre, up 1.0 bushel from 2011. The United States yield is the second highest on record, 0.6 bushel below 1999. Area harvested for grain is estimated at 34.8 million acres, up 8 percent from the previous year. Facebook Twitter Source: Indiana NASS SHARE Final winter wheat production at 20.1 million bushels was down 19 percent from the previous year. Indiana’s 2013 winter wheat seedings for all purposes is forecast at 450,000 acres, up 29 percent from a year ago. Alfalfa hay production, at 812 thousand tons was down 32 percent from the previous year. Other hay production, at 665 thousand tons, decreased 5 percent. Production of popcorn, at 221.2 million pounds, decreased 20 percent from last year. Peppermint production was down 15 percent and the production of spearmint increased 66 percent from 2011. Nationally, corn for grain production is estimated at 10.8 billion bushels, up 1 percent from the November 1 forecast but 13 percent below 2011. The average yield in the United States is estimated at 123.4 bushels per acre. This is up 1.1 bushels from the November forecast but 23.8 bushels below the 2011 average yield of 147.2. Area harvested for grain is estimated at 87.4 million acres, down slightly from the November forecast but up 4 percent from 2011.U.S. soybean production in 2012 totaled 3.01 billion bushels, up 1 percent from the November 1 forecast but down 3 percent from 2011. United States production is the seventh largest on record. The average yield per acre is estimated at 39.6 bushels, 0.3 bushel above the November 1 forecast but 2.3 bushels below last year’s yield. Harvested area is up 3 percent from 2011 to 76.1 million acres and is the third highest on record. Home Indiana Agriculture News Final Numbers on Indiana 2012 Crop By Gary Truitt – Jan 11, 2013 SHARE Facebook Twitter Previous articleCorn and Wheat up on USDA January Report DataNext articleSeed Consultants Market Watch 1-12-13 Weekly Column with Gary Wilhelmi Gary Truitt
News to go further RSF condemns BBC broadcast ban as example of Chinese government reprisal United KingdomEurope – Central Asia Freedom of expression February 12, 2021 Find out more Solidarity with Swedish media outlet Realtid ahead of UK defamation case hearing In the joint submission, RSF, English PEN, and Index on Censorship emphasise the importance of ensuring that official secrets legislation is fit for purpose. They argue that any reform must take account of the potential impact on legitimate activities pursued in the public interest, including the activities of investigative journalists and the sources upon whom they rely. They consider that the Law Commission’s provisional conclusions with respect to protection of public interest disclosures are inadequate and reject the proposal for a statutory commissioner as an ineffective mechanism for safeguarding the public interest.The groups disagree with the Law Commission’s conclusion that the problems associated with the introduction of a statutory public interest defence outweigh the benefits and do not support the view that there are already sufficient existing safeguards for journalists. They submit that there should be no category of protected information created for sensitive economic information.“The Law Commission’s proposal is nothing short of alarming, particularly when viewed in the context of a broader trend of worrying moves against press freedom in the UK over the past year, resulting in the UK dropping to a ranking of 40th out of 180 countries in RSF’s 2017 World Press Freedom Index. The prospect of journalists being labelled as ‘spies’ and facing the threat of serious jail time for simply doing their jobs in the public interest is outrageous. This proposal must be revised with respect for press freedom at its core,” said Rebecca Vincent, UK Bureau Director for RSF.“This is an important opportunity to reform official secrets legislation and make it fit for the 21st century. Our response to the consultation demonstrates that it is both viable and necessary to include a public interest defence. Some of the most important news stories of the past seven years have been based on leaks of classified information that are squarely in the public interest and have resulted in critical public debate about foreign policy, privacy and freedom of expression. These laws go back to the Edwardian era and it’s vital that we now have legislation for our times,” said Jo Glanville, Director of English PEN.”It makes sense to update outmoded laws but no sense whatsoever to update them in such a way that they undermine the very liberties and freedoms on which our rule of law is based. The proposals laid out by the Law Commission threaten free expression and in particular a free media in the UK and should not be implemented in their current form,” said Jodie Ginsberg, CEO of Index on Censorship.Notes:Reporters Without Borders, English PEN, and Index on Censorship would like to thank barristers Can Yeginsu and Anthony Jones of 4 New Square Chambers, as well as Tom Francis of Joseph Hage Aaronson LLP, for their assistance in preparing this submission. Press contacts: Rebecca Vincent, [email protected] or +44 (0)7583 137751; Jo Glanville, [email protected] or +44 (0)771 3020971. Help by sharing this information Receive email alerts March 23, 2021 Find out more Safety of journalists remains active concern in Northern Ireland as BBC Panorama team is threatened News News Organisation RSF_en Related documents JOINT SUBMISSION BY ENGLISH PEN, INDEX ON CENSORSHIP, AND RSF IN RESPONSE TO LAW COMMISSION’S CONSULTATION RESPONSEPDF – 461.52 KB United KingdomEurope – Central Asia Freedom of expression Follow the news on United Kingdom London, 3 May 2017. On World Press Freedom Day, Reporters Without Borders – known internationally as Reporters Sans Frontières (RSF) – English PEN, and Index on Censorship have published their joint submission to the Law Commission’s Consultation on the Protection of Official Data. The free speech and press freedom groups welcome the opportunity to review legislation that is long overdue for reform, following the significant changes in the collection, retention and sharing of data over the past 20 years and the challenges facing both privacy and freedom of expression in the digital age. News May 3, 2017 Free expression groups call for public interest defence in UK official secrets laws February 11, 2021 Find out more
The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago How has the housing industry changed during your career?The biggest change in the industry has come about since the crash in 2008 with the disappearance of the private market. Around 93 percent of the mortgages originated are now supported by Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, FHA, or Gennie Mae. That’s incredibly different than it was 10 to 15 years ago.While those were still viable options, you also had a liquid secondary market for private placement and securitization, not through the GSEs or FHA. That simply has not come back for 10 years, and it doesn’t seem likely to make a wild comeback in the near future either. Sign up for DS News Daily in Daily Dose, Featured, News November 6, 2019 3,313 Views Steve StaidSteve Staid has 27 years’ experience in the mortgage industry, primarily in mortgage servicing. From 1992 to 2007, he worked at several mortgage servicing companies and held a variety of leadership roles in the default and customer service areas. In 2007, Staid relocated to Europe, where he was responsible for mortgage servicing operations in a number of countries across the continent. Upon his return to the United States three years later, he took a leadership role at Saxon Mortgage, a Morgan Stanley subsidiary, eventually becoming its CEO. In 2012, Staid took on a leadership role at Bank of America, overseeing non-default servicing operations and the bank’s mortgage related companies, including their title company, their appraisal management company, and several other entities. In 2017, he joined PHH as the head of mortgage servicing and business development. Staid, now the new Chief Servicing Officer with Gateway First Bank, spoke with DS News on his new role, changes in the industry, and what lies ahead for the consumer in 2020. 2019-11-06 Mike Albanese Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Print This Post Demand Propels Home Prices Upward 2 days ago Do you believe affordability could increase for the consumer in 2020?It is a more complicated story than most people would probably believe. We understand that housing starts in high growth areas, in the big urban centers – think of the Dallas, Houston and Denver. Unfortunately, new stock is not keeping up with the demand for housing. The underlying challenge here that we’re having an interesting dialogue about at Gateway is that low to moderate house prices have become very difficult to find in those sorts of markets and very difficult to start. The cost of new home builds has gone up dramatically in the last 10 years.Additionally, cities and municipalities are taking a really good look now at what their tax base needs to be in order to afford the services to their community.Think about building schools, fire departments, police department. Then start thinking about how things started in the $200,000 and up range. When you start thinking about that number, that doesn’t really feel like starter home number, right? There is an interesting dynamic whereby it’s incredibly more expensive than it has been to build a house, and cities would like to see a higher tax base in order to afford all the services required for their community. What does this mean for affordable, single-family housing in the future? Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago What role do you see technology playing in the service industry as we enter 2020?Technology plays a more critical role than ever. We always talk about economies of scale in servicing, but we really get the most economies of scale through the implementation of new technology – to automate more processes and to take more expenses out of the system.The companies that are more advanced along those lines will find themselves successful as this profit and loss pressure mounts, if inflation rises over the next five years as predicted. Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago About Author: Mike Albanese Mike Albanese is a reporter for DS News and MReport. He is a University of Alabama graduate with a degree in journalism and a minor in communications. He has worked for publications—both print and online—covering numerous beats. A Connecticut native, Albanese currently resides in Lewisville. Data Provider Black Knight to Acquire Top of Mind 2 days ago Key Challenges Facing Mortgage Servicing Do you think the move to high-density zoning could be a viable solution to the affordable housing crisis?I’m not sure there is another solution right now, especially if you think of somewhere like San Francisco, or Seattle, where you are limited in how you can expand. You have geographical limitations to those places. Seattle can’t be a sprawl, especially when compared to somewhere like Dallas.Everyone is talking about growth in areas, like those big metroplexes, but the growth is outstripping the ability to build single-family houses anyway. It’s got to go high density. Previous: The Danger Beyond the Storm Next: The Areas Where Homeowners Are Still Underwater The Best Markets For Residential Property Investors 2 days ago Governmental Measures Target Expanded Access to Affordable Housing 2 days ago The Week Ahead: Nearing the Forbearance Exit 2 days ago What are your thoughts on the current state of the industry with 2019 coming to a close?I think the biggest challenges for the servicing industry in the coming years are going to be surrounding profitability. One of the things that servicing entities are challenged with, simply with 93 percent of mortgages being GSE or FHA related, is that the servicing fees on those are fixed. If you look at how the inflation curve has run lately, it’s not that scary. But, if you want to project inflation over the coming years, we’re talking about the cost of servicing going up just on inflationary basis, over the next five years, maybe 10 to 15 percent. Our expense base is going to increase, yet our ability to increase our revenue is going to be capped by the growth of mortgage balances. The 25-basic points of fixed servicing fees has been in place for a long time, and I think that will continue to bring more pressure to bear on the profitability of servicers over time. Servicers Navigate the Post-Pandemic World 2 days ago Home / Daily Dose / Key Challenges Facing Mortgage Servicing Share Save What are your thoughts on being named Chief Servicing Officer at Gateway First Bank?I’m extremely excited to be working with Gateway. They’re a great mortgage company, that’s now also a bank, and there is a huge opportunity to grow their servicing book in the coming years. At Gateway, we have a very powerful origination channel, and have proven over time that it’s sustainable and profitable. As a servicing company, you really need a channel for loans to come in. Loans pay off over time, and borrowers refinance or pay off their mortgage in full.Having a pipeline into a servicing platform is critical, and that’s one of the strengths at Gateway that I found very appealing. Related Articles Subscribe