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Mandela Day: Tributes pour in from around the world

Community The South African

Mandela Day is special day for South Africans to give back in honour of Nelson Mandela, but it is also a day that is shared with the whole world.
'Even though it was South Africa that Nelson Mandela was trying to save, his humanitarian goals of justice and freedom for all have left a lasting legacy that is celebrated across the globe on Mandela Day. As South Africans go about giving 67 minutes of their time to celebrate the life of Nelson Mandela on Mandela Day, many people around the world are preparing to do the exact same thing. Mandela was instrumental in bringing down apartheid in South Africa and was elected to be its first black president once freedom was achieved in 1994, but it was his ideals and steadfast dedication towards genuine equality that endeared him to people around the world. Mandela Day tributes His ability to forgive the oppressors that locked him up in jail for 26 years in order to forge ahead with his idea for a new South Africa almost beggars belief. He is without a doubt one of the greatest South Africans ever born and likely one of the greatest humans ever to grace this earth. It is no wonder that his legacy continues to be celebrated the world over and his memory invoked to remind people there is a better way to live. United Nations Secretary-General UN Chief António Guterres was one of the first international leaders to speak out on 2019’s Mandela Day, calling South Africa’s former president one of the most iconic and inspirational leaders of our time. “Nelson Mandela exemplified courage, compassion and commitment to freedom, peace and social justice. He lived by these principles and was prepared to sacrifice his liberty and even his life for them.” “As we work collectively for peace, stability, sustainable development and human rights for all, we would be well served to recall the example set by Nelson Mandela. Our best tribute is found in actions.” Humanitarian Graça Machel Mandela’s widow Graça Machel also took time out to reflect on the life of her late husband and what his legacy should mean to South Africa and the world. “Mandela Day is a reminder that any one of us has the power to take initiative and drive transformation,” she said. “We need to look at it as a pledge for the whole year that goes beyond one’s daily activities. Decide what is the difference I can make to people over the year so that it can become a way of being, not just an event.” Malaysian politician Anwar Ibrahim Leader of the People’s Justice Party, a centre-left multiracial party in Malaysia, Anwar Ibrahim told of how Mandela once apologised to him for not helping him get out of prison sooner. “He saw my children and suddenly he became very emotional, we were all disturbed, I tried to calm him down by making a small joke,” Ibrahim recounted. “I said, ‘Madiba, relax, mine was a short road to freedom’. He smiled. “He said, ‘Anwar, I’m sorry I was not able to help you’. I told him I knew he had done his best.” Priyanka Gandhi Vadra The granddaughter of the first, and to date only, female prime minister of India Indira Gandhi, Priyanka told of how she used to call Mandela uncle and that he also spotted her potential for politics before anyone else. “The world misses men like #NelsonMandela more than ever today. His life was a testament to truth, love and freedom,” she posted to social media platform Twitter. “To me, he was Uncle Nelson (who told me I ought to be in politics long before anyone else did!). He will always be my insipration and my guide.”'

Bawumia Visits Cuba, Canada

Community DailyGuide Network

Vice-President Dr.Mahamudu Bawumia Vice-President Dr.Mahamudu Bawumia has left Accra for Havana and Vancouver in Cuba and Canada respectively.
'Vice-President Dr.Mahamudu Bawumia Vice-President Dr.Mahamudu Bawumia has left Accra for Havana and Vancouver in Cuba and Canada respectively.In Havana, he would be the special guest of honour at the Graduation Ceremony of 232 Ghanaian doctors trained at the University of Medical Sciences in the Caribbean country.He would also hold talks with the President of Cuba, Miguel Díaz-Canel; the Vice-President of Cuba, Salvador Valdes Mesa and other senior Cuban government officials.At the African Heroes’ Park, he is expected to lay a commemorative wreath.He would head for Vancouver from Havana as leader of a Ghanaian delegation to the Trade and Investment Mission scheduled for Saturday.The programme is being organised by the Ghana High Commission in Canada in collaboration with the Canada Africa Strategic Investment Group Inc.Dr Bawumia would also deliver a lecture at the Simon Fraser University, British Columbia, and interact with the Ghanaian community in Vancouver.He returns to Accra on Wednesday, 24th July, 2019.The Speaker of Parliament Prof.Aaron Mike Ocquaye shall, in accordance with Article 60(11) of the Constitution, act in his stead until the arrival of President Akufo-Addo on Thursday, 18th July, 2019, who is also out of the country. . The post Bawumia Visits Cuba, Canada appeared first on DailyGuide Network .'

The Exploitation Time Bomb

Community East African Business Week

NEW DELHI – Since reducing inequality became an official goal of the international community, income disparities have widened.
'NEW DELHI – Since reducing inequality became an  official goal  of the international community,  income disparities have widened . This trend, typically blamed on trade liberalization and technological advances that have weakened the bargaining power of labor  vis-à-vis  capital, has generated a political backlash in many countries, with voters blaming their economic plight on “others” rather than on national policies.And such sentiments of course merely aggravate social tensions without addressing the root causes of worsening inequality.But in an important new  article , University of Cambridge economist José Gabriel Palma argues that national income distributions are the result not of impersonal global forces, but rather of policy choices that reflect the control and lobbying power of the rich.In particular, Palma describes the significant recent increase in inequality in OECD countries, the former socialist economies of Central and Eastern Europe, and China and India, as a process of “reverse catching-up.” These countries, Palma says, increasingly resemble many unequal Latin American economies, with rent-oriented elites grabbing most of the fruits of growth.In his  earlier work , Palma showed how middle and upper-middle income groups’ share of total income has remained remarkably stable in most countries over time, at about one-half.Changes in aggregate income distribution, therefore, resulted largely from changes in the respective shares of the top 10% and the bottom 40% of the population (the ratio between these shares is now called the “Palma ratio”). In other words, the huge variation in inequality across countries, and particularly between middle-income economies, is essentially the outcome of a fight for around one-half of national income involving one-half of the population.Only in cases of extreme inequality (such as South Africa) did the top 10% also manage to encroach on the income share of the middle.It is misleading, therefore, to view rising  per capita  incomes in middle-income countries as indicating a general improvement in standard of living.In unequal middle-income economies such as those in Latin America, the incomes of the top 10% are already on par with those of their rich-country counterparts.The incomes of the bottom 40% are closer to the Sub-Saharan African average.The driving force behind these trends is market inequality, meaning the income distribution before taxes and government transfers.Most OECD countries continually attempt to mitigate this through the tax and transfer system, resulting in much lower levels of inequality in terms of disposable income.But fiscal policy is a complicated and increasingly inefficient way to reduce inequality, because today it relies less on progressive taxation and more on transfers that increase public debt.For example, European Union governments’ spending on social protection, health care, and education now accounts for  two-thirds of public expenditure , but this is funded by tax policies that let off the rich and big corporations while heavily burdening the middle classes, and by adding to the stock of government debt.As Palma puts it, “in their new tax status, corporations and the very rich now prefer to  part ‐ pay/part ‐ lend  their taxes, and part‐pay/part‐lend their wages.” In rich countries, middle-income groups have largely maintained their share of national income.But their living standards have fallen, owing to the rising costs of essential goods and services (such as housing, health care, and education), falling real pensions, regressive taxation, and rising personal debt.Most emerging-economy governments, meanwhile, are not implementing significant fiscal measures to reduce market inequality.The dramatic increase in market inequality reflects the ability of the top 10% to extract more value created by others and to profit from existing assets – including those that should be public property, such as natural resources.Specifically, this increase in value extraction is the result of policies for which the rich have actively lobbied: privatization; deregulation of share buybacks that artificially inflate stock prices; patent laws that make drugs much more expensive; reduction or elimination of top marginal tax rates; and much else.Giving the rich all this additional income has not resulted in higher investment rates in the OECD or in unequal middle-income countries.Instead, the rich are content to pluck the low-hanging fruit of rent extraction, market manipulation, and lobbying power.High profits therefore coexist with low investment and increasing market inequality, in a self-reinforcing pattern.This trend not only magnifies the risk of economic stagnation and market failures; political changes around the world suggest that it has also become a profound threat to democracy.Addressing this dangerous state of affairs will require that governments use their power to tax and regulate to channel more private capital into productive spending and increase the amount of public investment financed by progressive taxation, along the lines of a Global Green New Deal.If policymakers fail to mount a response that is proportionate to the problem, the rich will continue to get richer, and the poor to get poorer, faster than ever.Who will address the problem then?Jayati Ghosh is Professor of Economics at Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi, Executive Secretary of International Development Economics Associates, and a member of the Independent Commission for the Reform of International Corporate Taxation.Copyright: Project Syndicate, 2019. www.project-syndicate.org     . The post The Exploitation Time Bomb appeared first on East African Business Week .'

A road to glamour while covering up is a new fashionista

Community The Women Journal

Back in the 90s in Muslim community the hijab was a non-fashionista thing, wearing a black colour hijab was the only thing Muslim women and young girls wore but this era is more colourful and full of glamour. As everyone can see today’s women wear
'Back in the 90s in Muslim community the hijab was a non-fashionista thing, wearing a black colour hijab was the only thing Muslim women and young girls wore but this era is more colourful and full of glamour. As everyone can see today’s women wear hijab of different styles involving a true image of fashion and glamorous, not just covering their head and chin but wearing a twisty type hijab leaving their chins to uncover to show the sparkling earrings wearing a high toned makeup. 20-years back hijab was a non-fashion thing but today is beyond your thoughts. A researcher at Singapore Nanyang Technological University, Jailanee said in an interview that, when I was young it was just a black colour veil you wore just to cover your head, now she is 45 and a co-author of a paper Hijabistas, composed of word ‘Hijab’ and ‘Fashionista’, the paper labels the new mode of Muslim girls who wore stylish hijab in a Muslim way. She says this is a change by social media, which has increased the demand of modest Muslim in the society. Another inspiring personality an Indonesian designer Dian Pelangi is one of the reasons to explore modest fashion among young Muslims. Pelangi with 5 million followers on Instagram she is famous among young ones to remain stylish while covering up. She is in the list of 500 most influencing personalities according to a London based website 2015-16. Muslim communities such as Indonesia, Malaysia, and Singapore are more moderate than middle-east Muslim communities. Another brand ‘Seek Refuge ’ a California based modest street-wear clothing line taking a keen interest in young Muslim women, its founder Shazia Ijaz a 26-years young breed thinks more liberally. Few of the models on her website, which features loose jackets, sweaters, and jeans, wear the headscarf, and part of her stated mission is to empower Muslim women, she says modest doesn’t have to mean the hijab. But the fashion industry isn’t without criticism, a Somali- American model Halima Aden who’s the first one to spot the cover of a sport’s magazine wearing a head to heel burkini swimsuit was criticized by the Muslim community saying her appearance in the magazine is representing Muslim women, both her appearance and the burkini were suitable for a Muslim women to show up. Fashion consultant Franka Seoria says she is worried that the glam factor is getting out of hand, and wants to return the industry to Muslim values. She says fashion should be not something like an ugly competition to be the most glamorous it has to be in the line to do good things not making things bad and ugly that no one wants to see ever.'

Widen Tax Incentives – Gov’t Urged

Community DailyGuide Network

'Mr.TesfaMariam speaking at the conference Government has been urged to widen tax incentives for private businesses in order for them to get fully committed in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities.According to players in the private sector, it would be a win- win situation for both government and the private sector if tax incentives were awarded to companies as a result of participating in CSR activities.The Greater Accra Regional Chairperson for the Association of Ghana Industries, Tsornam Akpello, who made the call recently, said “my proposal is that there should be a legislature that allow private sector to commit part of its tax money to be channeled into the CSR, that way there will be proper motivation for them to pursue activities in favor of the CSR”. He added that calling for government to create tax incentives was not a new thing because it was being done in some parts of the world but it should rather formalized in the country to enable the private sector to be obliged in giving back to the society.He was speaking at the seventh National Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Conference in Accra themed: ‘Harnessing Local Partnership for CSR and Sustainability’. Country Director of Plan International, Solomon TesfaMariam, speaking at Conference said Plan International was an independent development and humanitarian non-profit organization that advances child’s rights, equality for girls and all-round community development. “We support the realization of children’s right from birth until adulthood because we believe in the power and potential of every child, but know this is often suppressed by poverty, violence, exclusion and discrimination”. Mr TesfaMiriam noted that Plan International Ghana have been building powerful partnerships for the past 80 years and was involved with more than 75 countries including Ghana, using its reach, experience and knowledge to drive change in practice and policy at local, national and global levels. “Economic Security, Water, Hygiene and Education are 4 thematic areas that Plan International operates”…. through child-centered, family and community-oriented development interventions, Plan International Ghana has sponsored close to 30,000 children and indirectly reaching 2million children”, he stated.He added that Plan International Ghana has several projects that it was working on.Reaching and Teaching out of School Children (REACH) in partnership with Ministry of Education, Ghana Education Service amongst others would address the issue of out-of-school children in the country.The project aims to enroll 90,000 girls and boys who are dropout from five regions through the Complimentary Basic Education and transition 70 percent of the graduates to formal primary schools.Plan International Ghana in the health sector is working on the Strengthening Health Outcomes for Women and Children (SHOW) Project in underserved locations and implementing Maternal, Neonatal and Child Health (MNCH) project to improve health in some eight hard to reach districts in Ghana.He also noted that in order to increase access to safe, affordable and sustainable drinking water to 30,000 beneficiaries, Plan International Ghana through its Rural Water and Sanitation Hygiene Project (RWASH) is contributing to the reduction in illness and deaths among children through good access to safe, affordable and sustainable water and improved sanitation and hygiene.By Jamila Akweley Okertchiri & Nimako Nadia . The post Widen Tax Incentives – Gov’t Urged appeared first on DailyGuide Network .'

Iran Ready To Talk If US Lifts Sanctions

Community iAfrica.com

Iran is ready to hold talks with the United States if Washington lifts sanctions and returns to the 2015 nuclear deal it quit last year, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said in a televised speech on Sunday.
'Iran is ready to hold talks with the United States if Washington lifts sanctions and returns to the 2015 nuclear deal it quit last year, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said in a televised speech on Sunday.US President Donald Trump’s administration has said it is open to negotiations with Iran on a more far-reaching agreement on nuclear and security issues.But Iran has made any talks conditional on first being able to export as much oil as it did before the United States withdrew from the nuclear pact with world powers in May 2018. “We have always believed in talks … if they lift sanctions, end the imposed economic pressure and return to the deal, we are ready to hold talks with America today, right now and anywhere,” Rouhani said in his Sunday speech.In an interview with the  Washington Post  newspaper, Pompeo dismissed Rouhani’s idea as “the same offer that he offered to John F Kerry and Barack Obama,” referring to the former US secretary of state and president. “President Trump will obviously make the final decision.But this is a path that the previous administration had gone down and it led to the (Iran nuclear deal) which this administration, President Trump and I both believe was a disaster,” Pompeo said.Confrontations between Washington and Tehran have escalated, culminating in an aborted plan for US air strikes on Iran last month after Tehran downed a US drone.Trump called off the retaliatory US air strike at the last minute.Calling for dialogue among all to resume, France, Britain and Germany – parties to the 2015 pact – said on Sunday they were preoccupied by the escalation of tensions in the Gulf region and the risk the nuclear deal might fall apart. “We believe that the time has come to act responsibly and to look for ways to stop the escalation of tension and resume dialogue,” they said in a joint statement that was released by the French president’s office.Despite calling for talks with Iranian leaders, Trump said on Wednesday that US sanctions on Iran would soon be increased “substantially”. Existing US sanctions have targeted Iran’s main foreign revenue stream from crude oil exports, which Trump in May moved to try to eliminate entirely.In reaction, Tehran said it would scale back its commitments under the deal, under which it had agreed to curb its nuclear program in return for relief from US and other economic sanctions that had crippled its economy. ‘CONSIDER POSSIBLE CONSEQUENCES’ Defying a warning by the European parties to the pact to continue its full compliance, Tehran has amassed more low-enriched uranium than permitted and has started to enrich uranium above the 3.67% permitted by the agreement. “The risks are such that it is necessary for all stakeholders to pause, and consider the possible consequences of their actions,” France, Britain and Germany, which have been trying to salvage the pact by shielding Tehran’s economy from sanctions, said in their statement.Iranian clerical rulers have said that Tehran will further decrease its commitments if Europeans fail to fulfil their promises to guarantee Iran’s interests under the deal.The nuclear deal aimed to extend the amount of time it would theoretically take Iran to produce enough fissile material for an atomic bomb – so-called breakout time – from several months to a minimum of one year until 2025.Iran denies ever having considered developing atomic weapons.There have been two signs in the past week that the United States may be signalling greater openness to diplomacy.US officials told Reuters on Thursday that Washington had decided for now not to sanction Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif despite Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin’s 24 June statement he would be blacklisted that week.On Sunday, US officials said they had given Zarif a US visa to attend a UN meeting this week.Iran’s mission to the United Nations said he had arrived in New York.Pompeo told the  Washington Post  he had granted the visa but restricted Zarif’s movements while in New York, allowing him only to travel between UN headquarters and the Iranian mission six blocks away, and to the residence of Iran’s UN ambassador.Pompeo declined comment when asked whether he or other US officials would try to speak with Zarif this week or at the UN General Assembly in September, the  Washington Post  reported.While accusing Zarif of exploiting US freedom of the press to “spread malign propaganda,” the US secretary of state told the newspaper he would accept any offer to appear on Iranian television.Reuters . The post Iran Ready To Talk If US Lifts Sanctions appeared first on iAfrica.com .'