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Delhi HC Suspends The May 04 Order of Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks Which Had Directed For Filing of Documents and Fees By May 18 [Read Order]

first_imgNews UpdatesDelhi HC Suspends The May 04 Order of Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks Which Had Directed For Filing of Documents and Fees By May 18 [Read Order] Karan Tripathi11 May 2020 11:05 PMShare This – xDelhi High Court has suspended the operation of the May 04 order of the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks, which had directed litigants and advocates to complete various acts/proceedings, filing of any reply/document, payment of fees, etcetera in the matter of any intellectual property applications/actions by 18.05.2020. The Single Bench of Justice…Your free access to Live Law has expiredTo read the article, get a premium account.Your Subscription Supports Independent JournalismSubscription starts from ₹ 599+GST (For 6 Months)View PlansPremium account gives you:Unlimited access to Live Law Archives, Weekly/Monthly Digest, Exclusive Notifications, Comments.Reading experience of Ad Free Version, Petition Copies, Judgement/Order Copies.Subscribe NowAlready a subscriber?LoginDelhi High Court has suspended the operation of the May 04 order of the Controller General of Patents, Designs and Trademarks, which had directed litigants and advocates to complete various acts/proceedings, filing of any reply/document, payment of fees, etcetera in the matter of any intellectual property applications/actions by 18.05.2020. The Single Bench of Justice Rajiv Shakdher noted that the Controller General had given a very small window in terms of timeframe to file the requisite documents and fees. The disputed order of the CGPDT had stipulated the following: “Whereas this office has issued Public Notices regarding the timelines/periods as prescribed under the IP Acts AND Rules administered by the O/o CGPDTM towards completion of various acts/proceedings, filing of reply/document, payment of fees, etc. in the matters of any IP applications, falling due between the lockdown period, i.e. 25th March, 2020 to 3rd May, 2020, in accordance with section 10 of the General Clauses Act, 1897. Whereas, the lockdown period has been extended to further period of two weeks, i.e. till 17th May, 2020 by GoI, MHA ORDER dated 1st May, 2020. Even though as per guidelines annexed with the order of MHA, the IP Offices are functional (with reduced strength), substantive limitations/restrictions on the movement of public and functioning of private offices in the Red Zones (Hotspots), are still in place. Therefore, considering the fact that all the IP offices in India are located in Red Zones (Hotspots), the due dates, with respect to timelines/periods prescribed under the IP Acts and Rules administered by the O/o CGPDTM towards completion of various acts/proceedings, filing of any reply/document, payment of fees, etc. in the matters of any IP applications filed with the offices under the administrative control of O/o CGPDTM, falling due between the above said lockdown period shall be 18th May, 2020. Challenging the said order, Senior Advocate Chander M Lall that the said order is contrary to the order passed by the Supreme Court in a suo moto matter titled RE: COGNIZANCE FOR EXTENSION OF LIMITATION, as much as protection against triggering of the period of limitation both under general and special laws,whether condonable or not, is to kick in from 15.03.2020 and not from 25.03.2020 as is the stand taken by the CGPDTM. While claiming that the said deadline imposes onerous burden both on the litigants as well as their advocates, Mr Lall further argued that it would be difficult for the litigants and the advocates to access their files and ensure that the filings as per prescribed procedure are made on 18.05.2020, when the lockdown itself, as it stands today, will get lifted only on 17.05.2020. While taking these arguments into consideration, the court highlighted that no Court, Tribunal or any authority can act contrary to the order of the Supreme Court dated 23.03.2020 as the same has been passed by the apex court while exercising its powers under Articles 141 and 142 of the Constitution. Therefore, while suspending the operation of the order dated May 04, the court directed CGPDTM to function as per the directions issued by the Supreme Court in its order dated March 23.Click Here To Download Order[Read Order] Next Storylast_img read more

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Exclusive: The Strange Case of Long Island’s Stolen Mummy Head

first_imgSign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York [dropcap]T[/dropcap]he sun was setting on Long Island’s longest heat wave when Elaine Colbert allegedly shouldered through the locked side door of a brick-faced Lindenhurst home and stole an ancient Egyptian mummy head.She initially knocked, but got no answer. Growing concerned about the friend she was there to see, Colbert knocked harder and louder. A neighbor overheard the commotion and told Colbert that her friend—the mother of her late ex-boyfriend, whom she visited monthly—had died.“I heard some banging,” the witness later told Suffolk County police, according to court documents detailing the incident. “A few minutes later, Elaine came back, and she had a glass case that had a mummy head in it. Elaine wrapped the mummy head in a towel and said it was hers.”Although the case got little coverage, aside from a brief mention in a local news outlet’s police blotter, it easily ranks as one of the weirdest, most macabre thefts in recent memory on LI.It all started on Catskill Avenue shortly after 8 p.m. Monday, July 15, 2013—a sweltering week when LI broke its 20-year record for the lengthiest heat wave with weather worthy of the Sahara. The neighbor who witnessed the bizarre incident told Michael Snidersich—who still lives in the house he shared with his late mother. He in turn called 911. Four days later, Colbert was arrested.When the victim reported the theft to police, he told investigators that the mummy head was 4,000 years old and worth $35,000. But the mummy’s identity is unclear and its value remains open to debate.Colbert was originally charged with second-degree burglary, which is punishable by up to 15 years in prison. Last year, prosecutors dropped that charge and replaced it with two lesser counts: trespassing and petty larceny. That came after much head-scratching at her initial court appearance.“Say that again?” Judge Paul Hensley said when Assistant District Attorney Melissa Grier told him what the 56-year-old woman was accused of stealing. “Mummified head?”Colbert’s first defense attorney was equally baffled.“I don’t know the value of a mummified head at this time,” her court-appointed Legal Aid lawyer, Adam Markou, conceded when prosecutors asked Hensley to set bail for Colbert at $15,000. After the counselor argued that Colbert should be released without bail, the judge set her bail at $200—all the cash her family told Hensley they had at the time.Later, Colbert hired Mineola-based attorney James Pascarella, who negotiated a deal with prosecutors that spared her from landing in the tombs.In February, Judge Derrick Robinson granted an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal—known as an ACOD for short—that let Colbert avoid either going to jail or admitting to the crime in open court. As long as she has no contact with the criminal justice system for six months, the case will be dropped and sealed. If she abides by those terms, it will be dismissed on July 30, just over two years after the mummy caper. If she doesn’t, she faces up to a year in jail.“My client is giving up any rights to the mummy head which is involved in the allegation,” Pascarella told Robinson at the hearing on Feb. 5.Pascarella said authorities never had a chance to estimate the value of the mummy head because “there were other issues with the case.” Robert Clifford, a spokesman for Suffolk County District Attorney Tom Spota, did not respond to a request for comment on the mummy’s value.“Our position is my client never stole it,” Pascarella told the Press, adding that Colbert claimed her friend gifted the mummy head to her. “She had permission to be there, and she had permission to have the head.”MUMMY SLIDEEven murkier than the mummy head’s identity is why someone would want to steal it. A few clues were exhumed from Colbert’s signed statement to investigators describing the alleged theft.“I only broke into the house and took the mummy head to protect it,” she said in the statement, according to police. Pascarella claims that Colbert only signed the statement; the police wrote it.Colbert’s elderly friend kept the mummy head in a glass case on a serving table in the dining room. “I ran through the house and went straight for the mummy head in the dining room because it was [her] pride and joy,” Colbert wrote. “I picked up the mummy head and put it in my car and drove home. When I got home, I put the mummy head on my computer table with a cover on it. When I had it at my house, I thought to myself, ‘Now what am I going to do with it?’”Colbert wrote that the woman had “told me she smuggled the mummy head from Egypt in a vase sometime in the Eighties. She said she had a mummy foot also, but I never saw that.”After the crime victim’s son reported the mummy head stolen, Suffolk authorities seized it from Colbert. To ensure the head wasn’t severed in modern times, investigators sent the remains to the New York City Medical Examiner’s Forensic Anthropology unit for testing.“We found that it was an ancient mummified human head without any forensic significance,” Julie Bolcer, a spokeswoman for the agency, told the Press. While the investigators eliminated the possibility of the head being linked to any unsolved missing persons or murder cases, they did not determine exactly how “ancient” it is.Snidersich countered that Colbert never had any rights to the mummy head. He said that the mummy head had not been smuggled, but was purchased legally. When he got it back from Suffolk authorities, he said the mummy’s mouth was missing a tooth or two.“My dad got that piece off consignment,” says Snidersich, recalling the purchase in the 1970s. “I was there when he got it… He was going to resell it here.” For reasons unknown, the family decided to keep the head instead. When his mother died two years ago, Snidersich inherited the mummy head—but only after his surviving brother said that he didn’t want it, he said.The family had been told that the head was “procured” from the Valley of the Nobles in Egypt, but that is difficult to verify.“It was not illegal to bring Egyptian antiquity into the country back then,” he says in his home decorated with Egyptian art. “I don’t know if it is or not now…”Experts say that the ban on selling all antiquities in Egypt was initiated in the early ’70s“My dad wasn’t hiding it,” Snidersich says. “It was wrapped in a towel in a piece of luggage. The guy at Customs unrolled it and said: ‘Who’s this, your uncle?’” He laughed at the memory. The mummy head was allowed to enter America.When Snidersich was growing up, he and his brothers called the mummy head Kharis, from The Mummy horror movie franchise. When one of their brothers admitted he was afraid of it, the others would always wait for him to fall asleep and place the mummy head near his bed. Now, Snidersich hopes to sell the mummy head, which his family believed to be a priest of Amun during the Eighteenth Dynasty, which ruled ancient Egypt through 1292 BC.RETURN OF THE MUMMYRobert Brier, a renowned Egyptologist at LIU Post, said that he would need to see the mummy head in the flesh to verify that it’s real, but that it looks like a credible mummy head from photos that this Press reporter showed him. But he doubts the family’s claims.“There’s always a story that comes with it,” he says. “I don’t think it’s worth more than $5,000.”Regardless of whether its resale value is closer to that of a used car or a new luxury sedan, the Lindenhurst mummy head may be only one of two mummies on LI. The other resides at the Vanderbilt Museum, Mansion and Planetarium in Centerport, which is about to celebrate its 65th anniversary in July.“No one has ever indicated that they have ever seen another mummy” on LI, says Stephanie Gress, director of curatorial affairs at the Vanderbilt Museum. The closest museum with a mummy is in Brooklyn. Gress notes that it’s possible there’s one in a private collection somewhere in Nassau or Suffolk but she’s unaware of it.In 1931 William K Vanderbilt II, a legacy of the American railroad dynasty, paid £280 for his museum’s mummy from a merchant in Cairo. That cost is estimated to be between $18,000 and $29,000 today, when adjusted for inflation and the exchange rate, and it could be worth more given its rarity.For decades, the Vanderbilt mummy has been the center of one of the museum’s most popular educational programs, drawing busloads of students eager to see it. But it’s also the subject of debate.“The whole culture of displaying human remains is a very contentious practice,” Gress says. “Some people find it offensive…It’s a struggle to make sure it’s done in a respectable way.”Back in Lindenhurst, the head of “Kharis” is back on the kitchen table in the glass case from which it was stolen. Where it will roll next is anyone’s guess.last_img read more

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NHL playoffs 2019: Should Maple Leafs have been called for interference on go-ahead goal?

first_imgOn the play in question, the game was knotted up at 0-0 with less than 10 minutes to go in the third period.Neither team could get a shot past the other side’s goalie and this game seemed destined for overtime. Related News Update: the NHL released a statement on the play confirming the call.”After reviewing all available replays and consulting with the Referees, the Situation Room confirmed the Referee’s call on the ice,” the statement read.”The decision was made in accordance with Rule 78.7 that states in part, “If a review is not conclusive and/or there is any doubt whatsoever as to whether the call on the ice was correct, the original call on the ice will be confirmed.” NHL playoffs 2019: Sharks’ Tomas Hertl guarantees Game 7 vs. Golden Knights NHL playoffs 2019: Does Barry Trotz want to play and beat the Capitals? ‘Absolutely, 100 percent’center_img But when Auston Matthews put a shot in the net late in the third period, he found pay dirt and a 1-0 lead.Should the Maple Leafs have been called for interference on this play though?On the play in question Maple Leafs forward Zach Hyman can be seen falling back into Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask.Boston’s goalie Tuukka Rask clearly can’t see Jake Muzzin pass it off to Matthews across the ice and the former No. 1 pick fired at a practically empty net.Take a look for yourself:Muzzin ➡️ Matthews ➡️ Back of the net.#Leafs take a 1-0 lead over the #Bruins in Game 5. pic.twitter.com/n59Fnz2UP2— Sportsnet (@Sportsnet) April 20, 2019Hyman is clearly seen making contact with Rask, but is that enough to rule interference?The letter of the law states goaltender interference occurs when “an attacking player, either by his positioning or by contact, impairs the goalkeeper’s ability to move freely within his crease or defend his goal; or (2) an attacking player initiates intentional or deliberate contact with a goalkeeper, inside or outside of his goal crease.”The play was reviewed and not deemed interference so the controversy may stop there, but that won’t keep this from being a conversation in the coming days as the Bruins are now on the brink of elimination.Hyman wasn’t sure if he interfered and he was very nervous about the outcome of the review.”I didn’t watch it,” he told Sportsnet. “I didn’t want to watch it. I’m just glad it counted.”Zach Hyman on the Auston Matthews goal review: “I didn’t watch it. I didn’t want to watch it. I’m just glad it counted.”— Chris Johnston (@reporterchris) April 20, 2019The Leafs eventually took a 2-0 lead, but Boston cut the deficit to one with a goal in the final minute. Had Matthews’ goal been disallowed, this game likely heads to overtime.Now Boston has to go to Toronto and win to force the series to seven games and a finale in Boston. This play could have huge ramifications on the series. The Maple Leafs now lead their Eastern Conference quarterfinal matchup with the Bruins 3-2, but should this game have gone to overtime?Bruins fans may certainly think so as Toronto’s go-ahead goal was surrounded by some controversy.last_img read more

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‘World record holder at winning semi-finals’ – Klopp laughs off ‘unlucky’ tag

first_img– ‘Take that next step’ –Liverpool lost 3-1 to Real in Kiev last year, but Klopp was quick to point out how different his side is now, with Alisson Becker, Fabinho, Naby Keita and Xherdan Shaqiri all joining subsequently. Virgil van Dijk only moved to Anfield midway through last season.“We are much more mature, we are a different side, we are older. Age is a good thing, getting older, from all points of view actually.“We are a year older, a player like Trent (Alexander-Arnold) has around 50 more games in his legs with more experience in football.”Alexander-Arnold’s fellow full-back Andy Robertson has been another standout performer for Liverpool this season and the Scot emphasised the determination of the Anfield squad to help Klopp get his hands on his first trophy with the club.“Since he came here, he has changed how the club is and we obviously want to try to repay him with a trophy. Squads before came close and just fell short,” said Robertson, one of last season’s losing finalists who also lost a Scottish Cup final in his time with Dundee United.“It’s all about trying to take that next step. But it’s not just for him, it’s for the team behind it — the team behind the team — everyone at Melwood (training ground) and all our families.“We have all that to drive us forward. Of course, it would be nice to see him with his hands on the trophy.”Share on: WhatsApp FILE PHOTO: Jurgen KloppMadrid, Spain | AFP | Jurgen Klopp laughed off suggestions he is an unlucky manager as he looks to halt an unfortunate run of ending up on the losing side in his last six finals as a coach when he leads Liverpool into Saturday’s Champions League decider.“Since 2012, apart from 2017, I was every year with my team in a final, so we are getting there sometimes with luck in some moments, but most of the time because we had to go there,” Klopp told reporters at the Metropolitano Stadium in Madrid, where Liverpool will face Tottenham Hotspur on Saturday.“I am probably at the moment a world-record holder, in the last seven years at least, in winning semi-finals, but if I wrote a book about that probably nobody would buy it.”This is the seventh final for a Klopp-led team to since his brilliant Borussia Dortmund side won a German league and cup double in 2012.He lost the 2013 Champions League final with Dortmund and the German Cup final in each of the following two campaigns.Klopp then lost the Europa League and League Cup finals in his first season with Liverpool, before being defeated in the 2018 Champions League final by Real Madrid.Liverpool also finished second to Manchester City in this season’s Premier League despite losing just one game and amassing 97 points. But the German insists it cannot all be about him.“I’m a normal human being, and if I would now sit in a room and think it’s all about me, I am the reason, if I would see myself as a loser or whatever, then that would be a problem. But I don’t see it like this.”Klopp, 51, added: “The things that happened in the past, for me I still got confidence I can take out of that, and could always, so it’s all good.“Now I understand luck — if you work for it, you have it from time to time, not always… but apart from that, no, it was not an unlucky career and it’s not over, I have still a few years!”last_img read more

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Trusting Science Experts Can Be Disastrous

first_imgNobody pushes the values of science more than scientists. But trusting them doesn’t always work out right.We often hear that science is the surest path to reliable knowledge. Big Science (i.e., academia and the journals) are the biggest sales force for this view. “We need scientific values more than ever,” New Scientist preaches, using the occasion of Donald Trump’s election to scare people that this alleged anti-scientific president (a common opinion on the political left) is poised to send America into another pre-scientific dark age. Similar assumptions that scientists should be the default experts are expressed by Dan Kahan in Nature, “How to trump group-think in a post-truth world,” and by Kathleen Higgins in Nature, “Post-truth: A guide for the perplexed.”“Whose word should you respect in any debate on science?” Peter Ellerton, a lecturer at the University of Queensland in critical thinking, asks his audience at The Conversation. Every student knows the expected answer. It’s the word of scientists. They are the ones who don’t take anybody’s word for anything. They subject all claims to the scientific method. Ellerton sets up some convenient straw men to knock down, such as climate change skeptics who trust one expert for their facts, but dismiss the view of the consensus of experts.The argument is simple, and goes a bit like this. Science does not work by appeal to authority, but rather by the acquisition of experimentally verifiable evidence. Appeals to scientific bodies are appeals to authority, so should be rejected.Ellerton finds a way to say that appeal to authority is not a fallacy.The fallacy would be more correctly named the “appeal to false authority” – for example when celebrities who are famous for their sporting or entertainment achievements are cited in support of a particular medical treatment.Appeals to appropriate authorities, such as experts in their fields, are one of the glues that hold our technological society together. We go to our doctor for her expertise and we are happy to take her advice without the insistence that the efficacy of potential treatments be demonstrated to us there and then.Engineers build impressively tall buildings, pilots fly incredibly complex machines, and business experts advise on financial markets. All this expertise is confidently assimilated into our lives because we recognise its value and legitimacy.It is not fallacious reasoning to accept expert advice. We rely on the authority of experts for quality control in many areas, including the peer-review process of science and other academic disciplines.(Regarding peer review, see the 7/09/16 entry.) Ellerton is partly right in the sense that people and governments need to respect verifiable, observable expertise. The problem is that many scientific opinions these days refer to predictions that are not verifiable and repeatable. What will the climate be in 100 years? Nobody has been there yet. What will happen to a star that enters a black hole? It’s impossible to experience such a thing. So if “scientists” are the default watchers of truth, who watches the watchers?Climate change makes a good test case about the value of expert advice that Ellerton presumes we must accept. Experts may find correlations with CO2 production and warming, but like we pointed out before, measurements like “global temperature” are fraught with selection effects (1/16/15), and yet the experts speak of this phrase as if it means something concrete. And nobody can be sure that trends will remain linear. Some go exponential, while others flatten out due to feedback. Even now, for instance, some climate scientists are pointing out that clouds could have dramatic feedback effects to cool the earth, but nobody knows how to include them properly in climate models (e.g., Phys.org).So the question becomes, how do we tell the difference between appeal to true authority and appeal to false authority? Is Ellerton saying that people should just bow down before the scientific consensus? (See 10/14/13.)Here’s a case where a whole continent did just that. New Scientist reports, “Europe’s green energy policy is a disaster for the environment.” In the article, Michael Le Page shows what happened when governments of Europe decided to follow the scientific experts on climate change, and set up “green energy projects” that were supposedly not as dirty as coal, oil and the other nasty fossil fuels that we all hear are so polluting.The EU gets 65 per cent of its renewable energy from biofuels – mainly wood – but it is failing to ensure this bioenergy comes from sustainable sources, and results in less emissions than burning fossil fuels. Its policies in some cases are leading to deforestation, biodiversity loss and putting more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere than burning coal.“Burning forest biomass on an industrial scale for power and heating has proved disastrous,” says Linde Zuidema, bioenergy campaigner for forest protection group Fern. “The evidence that its growing use will increase emissions and destroy forests in Europe and elsewhere is overwhelming.”The results have been worse than doing nothing, Le Page writes. Forests are falling, birds are dying, and companies profiting from the “green energy” initiatives are fighting reforms. Government officials, jumping on the clean-energy bandwagon to save the planet after all the warnings by scientists, erred by assuming that burning wood is carbon neutral. Wood fires can actually put out more soot into the air than coal. In another article from September 21, Le Page in New Scientist called the result “The great carbon scam.” It’s making global warming worse, they say.It’s true that some scientists warned the UK government about this but were ignored. “They’ve ignored it because they’ve already committed,” Le Page says, citing a Princeton expert. “And because they don’t know what else to do.” Government officials were attempting to do the right thing by setting emission goals set by the UN at international climate talks. The IPCC, relying on the consensus of climate experts around the world, told governments what their emission targets must be, and the UK took their word for it. The result has been disastrous. Things would be better today if they burned coal, Le Page says.Some will respond that scientists make mistakes, too, but have the best methods for self-correction. But how can anyone know when they are fully correct? Erroneous advice by scientific experts can be propagated for decades. We’ve all been told to drink lots of water each day, but Medical Xpress now says there’s little evidence to back it up. The experts all concurred that saturated fat is bad, bad, bad, but now another article on Medical Xpress says, “Saturated fat could be good for you.” A study in Norway “raises questions regarding the validity of a diet hypothesis that has dominated for more than half a century: that dietary fat and particularly saturated fat is unhealthy for most people.” This is not to say the new study has the final word, but only to illustrate that it’s not always easy to tell the true authority from the false authority, like Ellerton wants. You can’t just go by majority vote. Hardly a month goes by without some long-taught scientific “truth” unraveling with further research. Just this month, Nature pointed out that “carbon is not the enemy,” taking issue with the 2015 Paris climate accords.Scientists in many instances deserve our trust, just like honest investigators in any other field, when they can support their conclusions with evidence and logic. C.S. Lewis said,If popular thought feels ‘science’ to be different from all other kinds of knowledge because science is experimentally verifiable, popular thought is mistaken. Experimental verification is not a new kind of assurance coming in to supply the deficiencies of mere logic. We should therefore abandon the distinction between scientific and non-scientific thought. The proper distinction is between logical and non-logical thought.The words “science” and “scientist” are so broad as to be meaningless. The subjects lumped under the “science” tent differ in reliability, testability or credibility (cf. political science with geology or cell biology). And is a “scientist” reliable all the time, even when asleep or drinking coffee? If we shouldn’t trust a celebrity basketball player on climate change, neither should we trust a climate scientist who studies one small detail of forest emissions pontificating about global policy on sustainable development. Scientific societies are just as subject to groupthink and peer pressure as any other human association, whether labor unions, political parties, or cults.The Apostle Paul had a simple rule applicable to any expert opinion: “Examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good.” (I Thessalonians 5:21). (Visited 64 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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South Africa’s housing drive ‘taking shape’

first_imgLufhereng will become a modern township once all 24 000 to 25 000 houses are completed. These two shacks are part of many others in the sprawling township of Alexandra. Mortgage houses are available for the middle-class in emerging suburbs like Protea North. (Images: Bongani Nkosi) MEDIA CONTACTS • Mandulo Maphumulo Director: Media Services Department of Human Settlements +27 12 421 1423 or +27 79 699 5145  RELATED ARTICLES • Housing projects to curb SA slums • New technologies for social housing • New homes for Soweto residents • Joburg residences rejuvenatedBongani NkosiThe massive task of replacing informal settlements with more habitable houses is “steadily taking shape”, according to South Africa’s Department of Human Settlements.Up to 206 informal settlements have already had shacks replaced with proper houses, according to the department, and work is under way in at least 335 additional imijondolo, as the shack slums are known in isiZulu.Minister Tokyo Sexwale told Parliament on 19 April 2011 that his department had earmarked and finalised plans to upgrade 1 100 such residential areas across the country.In total, the department is looking at tackling 2 700 informal settlements in South Africa, all of which need proper housing. These areas, located outside cities, mostly accommodate low-income families.As part of its National Upgrading Support Programme launched in February 2010, the department has a mandate to eradicate at least 500 000 shacks in informal settlements by 2014.“… There is an accelerated delivery of quality houses that remains undiminished,” Sexwale said. “There is greater clarity on the nature and severity of problems confronting the country’s residential drive.”Sexwale said despite challenges, their finances are now being coordinated better to ensure success of their housing projects. His department’s officials are working closely with 49 municipalities to ensure that they are able to deliver the much-needed houses.The department has a budget of R122-billion (US$16.5-billion) in the 2011/12 financial year to spend on subsidised housing, water, electricity and other community amenities. It is guaranteed a further R138-billion ($20.4-billion) in 2013/14.Progress in other areasFreedom Park, a community outside Johannesburg, is one of the examples where the government has managed to replace the bulk of shacks with low-cost housing over the years. Only a few shacks remain in the settlement.Government-built houses also dominate most parts of Kliptown, a location in the middle of Soweto, although shacks still dominate parts of the massive township.The Johannesburg Social Housing Company (Joshco) has also built high-rise semi-detached low-rental units in the neighbourhood around the Kliptown Golf Course.Some residents from the Protea South informal settlement in Soweto were moved to Lufhereng, the biggest social housing project in Gauteng, in August 2010. Lufhereng will have between 24 000 and 25 000 units once complete, and will accommodate residents from Protea South and former farm dwellers and labourers.Although progressing at a slow pace, shack replacement projects are afoot in many settlements surrounding Johannesburg. The city’s council has undertaken to eradicate all 100 slums currently existing on its perimeter.The Alexandra Renewal Project is also making headway in providing decent housing in Alexandra, one of Johannesburg’s oldest townships, where most people still live in shacks. About 1 600 low-cost houses were handed over to beneficiaries in 2010 and some semi high-rise buildings have also been built in the township.The shanty town’s revamp includes building more government housing and providing amenities such as electricity, water, sewerage, roads and storm-water drainage systems to boost living standards.Boost to nine municipalities Major municipalities like the City of Johannesburg will now be able to initiate their own housing projects. They will no longer have to wait for approval and funding from provincial governments to pursue projects in areas under their jurisdiction.This is likely to cut out much of the red tape involved in allocation of funds. According to Sexwale, the move will help speed up delivery of housing.“This means that, for the first time ever, funds will be directed straight from the national department into the coffers of these municipalities,” said Sexwale.Seven other municipalities to benefit from the new policy are the City of Tshwane, Nelson Mandela Bay, eThekwini Metro, Ekurhuleni Metro, City of Cape Town and Francis Baard and Pixley Ka Seme district municipalities. All are under pressure to replace shack areas with proper housing.Rental optionsApart from providing fully subsidised houses, the government has also embarked on rental housing projects in and around the cities.The units cater for people working and living in the areas. Joshco has earned a UN award for its work in turning a number of dilapidated buildings in Johannesburg into decent low-rental units.“Many job seekers in urban areas … are seeking rental accommodation. Thus there is an increased demand for affordable and well-located rental accommodation,” said Sexwale.last_img read more

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Play Your Part episode 17: synopsis

first_imgGet a sneak peek of episode 17 of the Play Your Part TV series, here:Businesswoman Lynette Ntuli presents the television show SME Funding on BDTV. She is one of the guests on episode 17 of Play Your Part. (Images: Brand South Africa)Brand South Africa reporterBusinesswoman Lynette Ntuli is the chairperson of IgniteSA.com, a youth-orientated programme that curates educational content, with a focus on skills and entrepreneurial development.Ntuli is the founder and CEO of the asset management and infrastructure solutions firm Innate Investment Solutions. She is featured on episode 17 of the Play Your Part TV series, on Saturday, 6 January 2018.Here’s more about the other people featured on this episode:Sabelo MahlalelaSabelo MahlalelaMahlalela is the chairperson of non-profit company SGM Foundation. The foundation supports education and community-based poverty alleviation programmes, as well as selected environmental and biodiversity projects.Tshepo SeetaTshepo SeetaSeeta is the founder and managing director of eSpaza Sum, a black-owned management company with a goal of transforming township spaza shops and rural businesses into formal, professionally managed and wealth-creating businesses.Play Your Part is broadcast at 18:00 on Saturdays on SABC2.To get involved in playing your part in South Africa:Check out the conversation on Twitter: #GetInvolved; orFind out about initiatives on Play Your Part here.Tell us how you Play Your Part through our social media channels:Follow us on Twitter: @PlayYourPartSA;Follow Brand South Africa on Twitter: @Brand_SA; orLike us on Facebook: Official Brand South Africa.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

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10 months agoWatford boss Javi Gracia happy to go with what he has

first_imgWatford boss Javi Gracia happy to go with what he hasby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveWatford boss Javi Gracia insists he’s happy to go with the squad he has.Fringe striker Stefano Okaka completed his temporary switch to Udinese earlier this week, while defender Marvin Zeegelaar has also joined the Serie A club.There is also speculation surrounding the future of the in-form Abdoulaye Doucoure, but Gracia does not envisage any players arriving at Vicarage Road this month. “In this moment, maybe different things happen, but I am happy with the squad I have,” said Gracia.“With the players we have we can complete a very good season and if in one week something changes, we will see.“But at the moment I prefer to value the players I have because they deserve that. We have to be demanding with the players and we have to be ambitious with them, too.” TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

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VDR Risk of Pirate Attacks Remains High

first_imgzoom The German Shipowners’ Association (VDR) has once again warned that the threat to shipping posed by pirates has not yet been eliminated as the risk of attacks remains high around the Horn of Africa.The warning was made only days after an alleged pirate attack on a German tanker some 300 nautical miles off the coast of Somalia. The private armed guards on board the vessel only succeeded in chasing away the attackers after firing warning shots.The crew and the vessel remained unscathed, according to information by the German Shipowners’ Association.“The latest armed assault of a German merchant navy ship clearly demonstrates the piracy at the Horn of Africa remains an immediate threat to life and limb of seafarers and to peaceful maritime trade,” said Ralf Nagel, Chief Executive Officer of the German Shipowners’ Association.The International Maritime Bureau (IMB) of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) earlier said that, while the number of piracy incidents world-wide declined this year, pirates took 110 seafarers hostage in the first nine months of 2016, and kidnapped 49 crew for ransom.last_img read more

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