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first_imgI had just dropped my wife downtown on Buchanan Street and was heading back to work in Sinkor – 19th Street. At the car washing area on Buchanan Street between Carey and Benson streets, I slowed to let a “brahbee” (street peddler/petty hustler) cross the road and he shouted out “Shekie (big boss man), they say weed can cure Ebola!” He repeated it twice and with an unusual level of conviction.  My natural reaction would have been to dismissively respond “you stupid, ehn!”, but unsure of how he may respond and realizing I was outnumbered as the area teems with listless youth like him, I kept silent.  I instantly accepted that I was actually stunned by his statement, paused by both disbelief and despair.  I was shocked because coming from him I would normally consider this statement as foolish and silly. On reflection however, I was impressed that at least he was thinking about Ebola and how he could relate to it.  It appeared to me that ”brahbee” was concerned about his high, right, wrong or indifferent, but all the same, that was his level of concern. At the same time, he was looking for a solution that was familiar to him.  The despair came when I thought that these “brahbees” are our most vulnerable, the ones living on the edge of existence.  Most of the young people cannot afford basic necessities for Ebola prevention such as bleach and clean water.  Where is the support for the most vulnerable in our society? How do we get it to them quickly?  Do we just sit and wait for a national government response? As the common adage goes, “They are living by the grace of God”, but lest we forget, you and I constitute government with responsibilities and duties to our society and the State.Sitting and waiting for ‘the government’ which we believe has more responsibility than ourselves comes with a risk; a deadly alternative.  What happens when ‘brahbee dem’ get it?  We can be honest, many of these ‘brahbees’, both men and women are at the lowest rungs of our society, often considered a social nuisance, sometimes escalating to a menace.  We may not pay much attention to them, but they are all over our inner city, opening our cars doors, holding your bag, loading taxi and passengers, washing cars, helping you park or just annoyingly brushing pass you. This means they interact with cab drivers, with the ‘pem-pem’ boys and our domestic employees in their daily commute to and from work. They are possibly the largest group of moving potential carriers and they interact with us across all levels of society. They don’t likely have an organized means of communication and are most-often illiterate, drug-dazed and very mobile. Getting to them is a big challenge. Do we want to deal with that? I think (or certainly hope) NOT.Let’s go back one step and explain exactly how the “brahbee dem” relate to the all of us in the Ebola contracting cycle.  ‘Brahbee –dem’ refers to the low-lifers, most of who are drug users, petty criminals, pickpockets, car-loaders, the homeless, and our darling street boys. They will say anything to you to put a smile on your face for that 20 LD, but are likely also looking for you to let your guard down to steal your phone, car hubcaps, headlights or battery. For whatever time you were in Liberia, you may have heard them referred to as the “yana boys”, “grona boys”, “Don Bosco pekin dem”, “FBI them” or more officially, ‘brahbee.”  Honestly speaking, they are the rejects of our society, living in its under-belly, impacted by our civil war in unknown ways and used and abused by our failed systems. They have no access to health care, yet, they are Liberians and registered voters, like myself, who elected a government that promised peace and a better life.Monrovia and its surroundings currently host an estimated 1.5 million people or more, although it was built for 400,000. While we don’t have statistics on what percentage makes up the ‘brahbee dem’ and likely have not invested much to formally document their numbers or conditions, needless to say, basic observation can prove that they are numerous, and increasing.  One thing we know for sure is that we have all seen them, interacted with them, possibly know one or two who have fallen into this group through drug use, and can accept that our interaction is only the tip of the iceberg. Given what we now know of Ebola, even this merely casual interaction with them presents an elevated risk.  No matter the route, they are a constantly moving demographic. Remember Ebola does not require advanced levels of intimacy or significant amounts of contact which we would normally have because of our social strata.  Just a touch! We interact in this very small society, in an even smaller city and ‘Brahbee dem’ are among us, beside us and around us.According the WHO, it is clear that the Ebola virus is less prevalent in less populated and more remote cities like Barclayville or Cestos. It was acquired through one of our major food trading points, Lofa. It could have started from the small pepper trader. Today,  however, we are now discussing lives lost of Liberian and foreign doctors, health care workers, senior government employees like Patrick Sawyer and all the nameless victims we read about in Ebola statistics in our newspapers. It has impacted all levels of society. Ebola stands a chance to wipe out our entire society if we don’t prevent it from the level of the society which represents over 70% of Liberia’s economic value. I am speaking from the perspective that the Liberian people are its most valuable asset.Long winded perhaps, but my point to anyone is that this is an EVERYBODY fight. A nation and its people. This is one where running away is not a solution. Certainly if you leave and the ones that are left here die, how will the remaining 10% constitute a nation? Today, we have to stand up to the challenge and get behind one common cause to fight this face on. This will show to the world that, as a nation, we still have some strength in us. This is the unity that we need to save our people and rebuild Liberia to the 2030 vision – moving to a middle income country.I am not saying that we don’t care about the ‘Shekies’ like you and I with cell phones, cars and internet access.  I am just saying that the ‘Shekies’ have better options than ‘Brahbees dem.’ Today, I want us to think about the less fortunate and join whatever cause you can to support and let’s fight Ebola as a nation. Let’s avoid the blame game and get to work.So, can weed kill Ebola? I don’t know. I wish it could and the decriminalization discussion is possibly one for another day.  It was clear that the ‘brahbee’ association of weed to Ebola was the high we both needed to get somebody thinking about the true epidemic at hand. We act or lose the liberty that brought and keeps us here. Hehn, nahn fun O!Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Narrow escape

January 12, 2020 | gzfrmzwx | No Comments

first_imgMore than five persons were on Friday afternoon fortunate to walk away with their lives after two allegedly speeding vehicles collided before toppling and ending in a nearby trench at Patentia, West Bank Demerara.The drivers were each hurrying their vehicles in opposite directions at about 13:00h when the near disaster occurred. Public-spirited persons assisted in pulling those inside of the vehicles to safety. Thankfully, no one was seriously injured in this accident.last_img

Jamestown’s 400th feted

January 11, 2020 | gzfrmzwx | No Comments

first_imgJAMESTOWN, Va. – A group of modern-day John Smiths rowed away Saturday in a small, open boat from the site of the first permanent English settlement in America, which Smith helped found 400 years ago this weekend. The replica of a boat like one Smith used to explore the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries shoved off as the commemoration of Jamestown’s anniversary entered a second day filled with concerts, cultural and artistic demonstrations, and military drills. President Bush is scheduled to speak today, the closing day of the festivities and the actual anniversary of the settlers’ arrival at this swampy island on the James River on May 13, 1607. The boat’s 121-day voyage over 1,500 miles will retrace much of Smith’s journey and inaugurate the Capt. John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail, the country’s first national historic water trail. “There they go,” someone shouted as six crew members began rowing away from the island while Bystrom stood in the stern. The boat will stop at more than 20 spots in Virginia, Maryland, Delaware and Washington before returning to Jamestown on Sept. 8. The crew will attempt to complete the entire trip entirely by oar and sail. Smith’s trip in 1608 yielded a comprehensive map that guided English settlers for nearly a century. Smith observed the bay’s ecosystem along the way, and the new national trail will do the same with a system of “smart” buoys that will collect information about water and atmospheric conditions and transmit them wirelessly. Smith’s crew ran low on food and water two days into their trip and turned to the native Indians for help. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! “This is all just kind of overwhelming,” the captain, Ian Bystrom, said before the boat left. “I’m used to just sailing boats and teaching kids, and the next thing you know we’re here on the 400th anniversary.” The boat departed from Historic Jamestowne, where the colonists built a triangular fort. Archaeologists found the fort’s remains, long thought to have been washed away, in the mid-1990s. Since then, they’ve unearthed more than 1 million artifacts. Saturday, dozens of visitors ringed the fort site to watch archaeologists sift through the soil and show off some of their recent finds, including a sword that was among armor and weapons buried in a well that became a trash pit. Several hundred cheering people lined the shore of the river as Bystrom, followed by his crew of 11, slowly stepped onto large rocks at the water’s edge and into the 28-foot boat, called a shallop. last_img read more

first_img“I still believe that we can qualify. Personally, I know that we will be there next year. It is an unfortunate loss, but you learn from defeat and make sure you don’t do the same mistakes next time,” the tactician who was just appointed this year said.Ghana reached the semi-finals of last year’s showpiece, losing 2-0 to eventual champions Cameroon, before also losing the play off to Burkina Faso by a solitary goal.Appiah was left ruing missed chances as his side was blanked out by Kenya’s resolute defending, but says on a different day, probably the results would have been different.“In the second half we were pressing a lot to equalize. We had lots of chances, but it’s unfortunate we could not utilize them. I believe Kenya did well but we could have done better with the chances we created,” the tactician noted.Ghana players during their 2019 African Cup of Nations Qualifier against Kenya’s Harambee Stars at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani on September 8, 2018. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluHe added; “I never underrated Kenya. They did well and defended deep to protect what they have. In football chances come and if it’s not your day, you will not convert them. On my part though, I have learnt a lot about the players. It was important to know what they can do especially the new ones and this game has shown me a lot.”The tactician was also short of admitting that the performance of his players disappointed him, saying some did not play at the level he was expecting them to.“Personally, the level I was expecting from some of them was not what they showed on the pitch,” the coach further noted.Meanwhile, the tactician refused to blame the absence of three key players, the Ayew brothers and skipper Asamoah Gyan for the loss. Appiah also defended himself for starting star midfielder Kwadwo Asamoah and wingback Harrison Afful from the bench.Ghana skipper Daniel Amartey during their 2019 African Cup of Nations Qualifier against Kenya’s Harambee Stars at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani on September 8, 2018. PHOTO/Timothy Olobulu“I don’t play with names; I play with players who will be fit at a particular time. Kwadwo being on bench does not mean he’s not a good player but under circumstances we had to make some players start,”“When you are building a team, if you don’t give others chance to play, how do you assess them? We shouldn’t look at who can play today only, but also those who can play in 10 years,” the tactician stated.Ghana return to the drawing board and Appiah is under pressure as he prepares for the back to back home and away ties against Sierra Leone next month, matches he has to win to ensure the hopes of qualification remain afloat.The tactician also notes that his biggest ambition is to see the Black Stars qualify for the 2022 World Cup in Doha, Qatar after missing out on the Russia showpiece this year.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Ghana head coach Kwesi Appiah during their 2019 African Cup of Nations Qualifier against Kenya’s Harambee Stars at the Moi Sports Centre Kasarani on September 8, 2018. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluNAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 10 – Despite Saturday’s 1-0 loss at the hands of Kenya’s Harambee Stars, Ghana head coach Kwesi Appiah remains confident that his charges will qualify for the 2019 African Cup of Nations.Ghana remain top of Group F despite the result, though the group is massively open after Ethiopia beat Sierra Leone 1-0 on Sunday, meaning all teams in the group are on three points.last_img read more

first_imgLouis van Gaal cut a frustrated figure as he rued Chelsea’s stoppage-time equaliser but praised the way Manchester United played on Sunday.Jesse Lingard gave the Red Devils the lead just after the hour mark but after sitting back and trying to defend for the final 30 minutes, they finally conceded in the second minute of stoppage time when Diego Costa scored.Van Gaal was pleased with the way his team played but admitted his players need to defend with more composure and not just mindlessly hack the ball away.“There are a lot of frustrated players in that dressing room,” said the Dutchman.“We can play football as we did today but you have to reward yourself and defend with composure.“If you can’t control the ball and you are kicking the ball away without meaning then this is not good.“Also, you need to keep the ball and that kind of thing is very important, especially in the last quarter because Chelsea are pushing and pushing. We didn’t capitalise and in the end, they scored.”last_img read more

first_img Edin Dzeko [right] celebrates a Roma goal 1 Edin Dzeko has rejected the chance to join Sunderland in preference of fighting for his place at Roma next season.Sam Allardyce had put the Bosnian forward at the top of his summer wishlist as he attempts to find a regular partner for Jermain Defoe.But, according to Sky Italia, the former Manchester City man wants to remain in the Italian capital despite losing his starting place towards the end of last season.Dzeko managed just 10 goals for Luciano Spalletti’s team last and the club were willing to listen to Sunderland’s offer.The striker also seriously considered a return to the Premier League but has told club officials he thinks he can prove his worth in Serie A next season.last_img

first_imgA DONEGAL man who bit the nose off an Algerian man during an unprovoked drunken attack has been jailed for four and a half years.Savage attack – Carrigans man Barry Fitzgerald.Barry Fitzgerald, 23 and from Carrigans, pleaded guilty to the attack on 35-year-old Ali Halimi outside a chip shop in Derry’s Waterloo Street on April 14 last year. Mr Halimi was sitting in his car outside the takeaway when crazed Fitzgerald, who was in the Irish Army at the time, grabbed him, bit off the tip of his nose and spat it out onto the floor of the car.The Donegal man then continued his attack, biting his victim on the back before dragging him from the car and beating him with his fists.Fitzgerald was based at Finner Camp at the time, having joined the Defence Forces five years earlier. He had resigned from the service after the case.A defence barrister said the Carrigans man apologised to his victim.He alos said Fitzgerald had “a deep sense of shame” at having let down his family and his former colleagues in the Irish Army.Judge Brian Sherrard said people who were socialising or working in the city centre needed to be protected from this kind of “barbaric violence”.He jailed Fitzgerald for four and a half years, with half of that to be spent on licence.JAIL FOR DONEGAL MAN WHO BIT OFF VICTIM’S NOSE was last modified: September 9th, 2014 by John2Share this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

first_img How the Premier League table could change after the Boxing Day fixtures Latest Football News But in a funny Instagram post, Lingard is heard hoping for a huge increase to his physicality and his pace.We’ll have to wait and whether anyone at EA Sports was watching to find out with ratings still a few weeks away from being released. silverware Which teams do the best on Boxing Day in the Premier League era? The midfielder starred for England at World Cup 2018 and while on duty with his international team-mates again, he’s pleased with EA Sports for a significant upgrade.On FIFA 18, the Reds Devils had a decent season, starting with a meagre 78 rating but during the Premier League campaign saw his base card boosted to 80, and two Team of the Week boosts, the highest being 84.Meanwhile, a Man of the Match display against Panama saw him land a huge 91 rated Festival of FUTball card. Ronaldo warned Lukaku how hard scoring goals in Serie A would be before Inter move MONEY highlights FIFA 19 is almost here, due for release on September 28, but until then there is still plenty of talk about ratings.And Manchester United star Jesse Lingard is already targeting a couple of hefty increases. Best clips, calls and talkSPORT moments of 2019, feat Hearn, McCoist and more Every Championship club’s best signing of the decade, including Taarabt and Dack REVEALED 2 All of Jesse Lingard’s upgrades in FIFA 18. center_img RANKED Forbes list reveals how much Mayweather, Ronaldo and Messi earned this decade 2 impact smart causal Every current Premier League club’s best kit from the past decade Jesse Lingard applauds fans after Manchester United’s defeat to Brighton this season. England’s most successful clubs of the past decade, according to trophies won Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions ADVICE Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade BEST OF possible standings last_img read more

first_imgChristian Pulisic was perhaps the stand out player for the USA despite the team being well beaten by a youthful England side who possessed too much movement and pace.Goals from Jesse Lingard, Trent Alexander-Arnold and debutant Callum Wilson saw England cruise to a 3-0 victory at Wembley. 1 BEST OF Pulisic or dembele I can see klopp going for pulisic more becuase he give him his chance— tim (@NK8andSM10) November 15, 2018 The average first-team salaries at every Premier League club in 2019 Pulisic has been linked with a move to the Reds over the past year, with rumours of contract talks at the Bundesliga club breaking down.And it seems plenty of Kopites want Jurgen Klopp to bring the star to Anfield as quickly as he can. Check out the best tweets below. Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade Out of all that tosh at Wembley I’d only have Pulisic at Liverpool it’s as simple as that the rest r bang average squad players…— Danny Bevan (@Bevan2703) November 15, 2018 Yo Klopp you gotta gonand get Pulisic in the summer. Kid looks ready now trust— Morlai Dumbuya (@MrMorlai) November 15, 2018 Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions Most read football stories While much of the game was spent focused on Wayne Rooney, the potential wonderkids on display were happy to play their part.Jadon Sancho had a fantastic full debut, setting up the aforementioned Alexander-Arnold to slam home.But the visitors also had a potential superstar within their ranks – Borussia Dortmund star Christian Pulisic.A nimble and creative forward, the 20-year-old showed plenty of promise and even had a number of Liverpool fans begging the star to join their club. Pulisic shone at Wembley for the USA IN DEMAND The biggest market value losers in 2019, including Bale and ex-Liverpool star Man United joined by three other clubs in race for Erling Haaland LATEST LIVING THE DREAM REVEALED Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ We should definitely get Pulisic #ENGvUSA #LFC— Andrew G (@runandrewrunrun) November 15, 2018 Liverpool news live: Klopp reveals when Minamino will play and issues injury update RANKED Latest transfer stories from targets Kevin De Bruyne ‘loves Man City and wants to keep winning’, reveals father latest @LFC @PeterMooreLFC get Pulisic as our new number 10— Amjad Hussain (@amjadh1967) November 15, 2018 revealed scrap targets gameday cracker Boxing Day fixtures: All nine Premier League games live on talkSPORT Gerrard launches furious touchline outburst as horror tackle on Barisic sparks chaos Where every Premier League club needs to strengthen in January LATEST Arsenal transfer news LIVE: Ndidi bid, targets named, Ozil is ‘skiving little git’ We’ve got to sign Pulisic next summer @LFC— Thomas William Rice (@tomrice23) November 15, 2018 Just saw Christian Pulisic against England 1st half and I have seen enough. I think he is a perfect fit for Liverpool. Jurgen, buy him now!!!— dave deegan (@interpol1966) November 15, 2018 Tony Cascarino backs Everton to sign two strikers for Carlo Ancelotti Me watching PulisicBrain:Don’t say itDon’t say itDon’t say itDon’t say itDon’t say itDon’t say itDon’t say itMe: Pulisic is better than Mane #LFC— Dijkinho (@Dijkinho) November 15, 2018last_img read more

first_imgThe Drake University men’s tennis team will travel to NCAA Championship finalist North Carolina for the first round of the 2018 ITA Kickoff, the ITA announced June 8 following an online draft. “This four-team group will be especially challenging with UNC just reaching the finals of the NCAA Championships,” said Drake head coach Davidson Kozlowski. “We are returning everyone form this year’s roster and will be very much looking forward to the opportunity to play this year’s NCAA finalist and see what our squad of upperclassman are capable of.” North Carolina ended the season ranked No. 3 in the nation after falling to Virginia in the NCAA finals and finishing with a school record 29 wins. The Tar Heels’ head coach, Sam Paul, was recently named ITA Coach of the Year and two Tar Heels earned All-America honors with one being named the ITA Freshman of the Year. Michigan finished the 2017 season ranked 17th in the nation while South Carolina was 21st.center_img “It’s great to be a part of the ITA Kick-off again,” Kozlowski said. “This is the sixth-straight year we have been included in this event and will be our second trip to North Carolina. Two years ago, we split our matches in the event and picked up a big win over a top-50 Indiana team.” Print Friendly Version The Bulldogs, who are the reigning Missouri Valley Conference championship, will face the Tar Heels on Saturday, Jan. 27, in Chapel Hill, N.C. The following day Drake will face either Michigan or South Carolina.last_img read more