Over 3,000 Complaints of NRI Marriage Disputes Received in 3 Years: External Affairs Ministry

first_imgAs many as 3,328 complaints from Indian women who have NRI spouses about their marital disputes have been received by the Ministry of External Affairs, and its missions or posts abroad since 2015, a statement from the ministry said on Dec. 21.The number of complaints received until Nov. 30 this year is 1,022. The figures were 1,510 and 796 in 2016 and 2015, respectively, the Ministry of External Affairs said in response to a question in the Rajya Sabha, PTI reported.The government has taken measures to protect Indian women facing abandonment or divorce or other problems from their NRI husbands, VK Singh, the Minister of State for External Affairs, said.Of the 3,328 complaints received, 3,268 were addressed by way of providing counseling, guidance and information about procedures. “Mechanisms for serving judicial summons on the overseas Indian husband; filing a case in India, issuing Look Out Circulars; impounding and revocation of Indian passport of the husband; getting access to lawyers and NGOs empaneled with Indian Missions etc. and legal and financial assistance under ICWF,” Singh said.He also informed the Rajya Sabha that since 2014, an increasing number of women are approaching the government through the social media for assistance. “Use of social media is quick and every minute the people are increasingly using this route hence very dynamic,” said Singh.He added that External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj has also received a large number of requests on her Twitter handle. The government has provided assistance to 88,302 Indians residing abroad during emergency and conflict, Singh said.The government has been planning several initiatives to address cases of disputes in NRI marriages. It is thinking of collecting data on all registered marriages in a move to curb incidents of desertion of wives in a foreign country, Minister for Women and Child Development Maneka Gandhi said on Nov. 6. The ministry is also looking at creating an integrated nodal agency to look into problems faced in NRI marriages.An inter-ministerial committee recommended to the Ministry of External Affairs that Aadhaar should be made mandatory for registration of NRI marriages in India. The panel on NRI marriages was formed last year under the chairmanship of retired Justice Arvind Goel, the former chairman of the NRI Commission of Punjab. The panel consists of officials from the ministries of Women and Child Development, Home Affairs, External Affairs, and the department of Telecommunications. Related Itemswomen’s rightslast_img read more

South African Leader’s ‘Anti-Indian’ Comments Spark Controversy

first_imgIndian businessmen in South Africa have slammed the ‘racist’ comments of  Julius Malema, the leader of Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) party, even as the party refused to apologise over the issue. While members of the Indian community threatened to file charges against him, South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) was reported on August 2 as saying that it hasn’t received a complaint yet.Malema sparked controversy when he said Indians had monopolised the economy, and accused them of racism and exploiting African workers while addressing supporters in KwaZulu-Natal on Saturday.Indian Community CondemnsAshin Singh, the convener of the South African Minority Rights Equality Movement (Samrem), objected to Malema’s remarks, saying they would file criminal charges against him and take him to the Equality Court for his comments. “We’ve reached a point where enough is enough and we will take him to court, court is not like parliament,” Singh was quoted as saying by SABC News.“It’s a dignified place for civilised people who make intelligent comments, he must take the witness stand testify under oath and he won’t be allowed to put up his show as he does in parliament.”Malema’s comments, in which he labelled Indians as being ‘worse than Afrikaners’, also drew criticism from African National Congress member Visvin Reddy. “He (Malema) has harmed the good work we have been doing to unite people,” Reddy said, according to IOL. “In every society there are people who exploit others, ­but he has painted the whole community with the same brush.”EFF Refuses to ApologiseEFF, however, came to Malema’s defence. Party spokesperson Mbuyiseni Ndlozi released a statement, saying, “Each time we come across the suffering and oppression of our people, we shall not mince our words, nor tiptoe around false minority feelings…  the racism that African people suffer in the hands of many Indian businesses and families must be condemned and must come to an end.”Malema’s RemarksDuring his address, Malema had said:“This is not an anti-Indian statement, it’s the truth. Indians who own shops don’t pay our people, but they give them food parcels.”Following the incident, Schabir Shaik, controversial Durban businessman of Indian origin and former advisor to President Jacob Zuma, called him a misinformed fool. Shaik, who was released on medical parole in 2009 after being convicted on charges of fraud in 2005 and sentenced to 15 years in prison, said, “This fool is misinformed and does not have any insight with regard to business ownership in KZN,” News24 reported. “Why does he not talk about Huletts and other big, white capital and business in the province.Ndlozi responded to Shaik’s censure by advising him to focus on his “fake illness” and called for his parole to be reviewed. Related ItemsEconomic Freedom Fighters PartyEFF MalemaIndia commentsIndians racistJulius MalemaLittle IndiaMalema slams IndiansSouth Africalast_img read more

Why More Indian Students are Applying to Canadian Universities

first_imgIn the currently politically charged ‘anti-immigrant climate’ in the US and UK, students from India are increasingly looking at Canada as a safe haven. With the rise of Donald Trump and the anti-immigrant atmosphere in the US and other countries, it comes as no surprise that Canadian Universities are seeing a sharp surge in international admissions.Sharp Increase in the NumbersAccording to data provided by the University of Toronto, the number of students applying from India to the institute has increased by 57 per cent, while the number of students accepted from India increased by 45 per cent to 315, as compared to 218 last year.The situation is similar at Montreal’s McGill University, which saw a 58.3 per cent increase since fall 2016 in applications from visa students coming from schools in India. There has always been a gradual increase in the number of students from India — but never as sharp as has been noticed for the upcoming academic year.Ted Sargent, vice president (International) of the University of Toronto, said he noticed this trend among students from India and the US, and also from researchers and faculty members.“There’s a real upswing in interest in University of Toronto. There’s definitely a spike at the moment. Events in the US and the UK have reverberated around the world. It makes people go back and think again.”The increase in numbers may accentuate in the years ahead if American policy turns more unfriendly towards immigrant. The four offices of Canadian Universities Application Centre have already seen a rise in the number of calls coming in, some from students who are exploring a transfer from their enrollment in US schools.Canada More ConduciveAnother reason behind the fact that Canada is seeing a spike in applications is that the country offers world class education and living conditions at a cost comparatively lower than that in the United States and United Kingdom. Post-secondary education is strong and more standardised in Canada than in the US. International students can always avail merit-based scholarships, and it is quite common at many universities.Universities often require only your 12th grade report cards when examining transcripts.  The academic performance requirement is dependent on the institution and course applied for. Some schools don’t even require the SAT or ACT test scores. Admission process is less of a hassle in Canada. There is less emphasis on essays, letter of recommendation and extracurricular activities as compared to the US.Other than the absence of a hostile environment, a clear pathway to permanent residency and more certainty in the system is helping cement the unprecedented rush.Undergraduate Studies Abroad“What may be driving the increase at the undergraduate level is partially because more Indian students are prepared to study abroad for their undergraduate degree, whereas in the past Indian students more typically travelled abroad for graduate studies,” Karen McKellin, executive director, International Student Initiative at the University of British Columbia (UBC), told the Hindustan Times.Currently, there are more than 350,000 international students in Canada — which is almost one per cent of Canada’s population. “There are some other parts of the world that are looking inwards,” Sargent said. “And Canada is looking outwards and reaching out globally. I think it’s a competitive advantage for our nation.” Related ItemsCanadaEducationForeign EducationIndian StudentsInternational Universitieslast_img read more

Saanjh Kendras to Now Look Into Complaints of NRIs in Punjab

first_imgMore than 100 Saanjh Kendras or service centers will come up in Punjab to look into the grievances of Non-Resident Indians (NRIs). The Punjab Police have authorized the establishment of these centers in a move that aims to make it easier for NRIs to register their complaints.The state already has 15 police stations that have been set up specially to look into the complaints of NRIs, the Hindustan Times reported. Since many districts do not have these police stations, complainants now have to travel to different districts to lodge their grievances. The establishment of Saanjh Kendras will save the time of the NRIs who wish to approach the government for redressal of issues.“For example, people from Mansa were travelling to Bathinda to register complaints as the jurisdiction is with that police station. Those from Tarn Taran had to visit Amristar; and Sangrur’s NRI police station was covering Barnala too,” Ishwar Singh, the inspector general of police (IGP), NRI affairs, was quoted as saying in the report.The NRI complainants can also register their problems online by visiting the web portal of Saanjh Kendra: www.ppsaanjh.in. These centers are located at the headquarters of all the police district and commissionerate as well as at 114 sub-divisional levels. While inspectors are posted at district-level Saanjh Kendras, assistant sub-inspectors or sub-inspectors oversee the ones at sub-division level Kendras.Plans are also afoot to “restructure” the NRI police station system. “At these police stations in Sangrur, Ferozepur and Gurdaspur, for instance, the number of complaints is low, hence the staff don’t get enough work. Once the Saanjh Kendra experiment for NRIs’ complaints is fully successful, these stations can be closed down to use the force in routine policing,” a DGP-rank officer said, the publication reported.These centers also registered complaints of marital discord earlier. However, after a Supreme Court ruling which stated that all marital disputes will first have to be sent to a family welfare committee constituted at the district and sessions level, the workload at these Kendras has come down. “That is why a committee led by the DGP (director general of police) decided to use the staff posted in these centers for NRI disputes too,” the report quoted an official as saying.“Saanjh, a collaborative effort of police and community, takes the philosophy down to the grassroots through sub divisional Saanjh Kendras and police station Saanjh Kendras,” the Punjab Police stated on the Saanjh website. It added that a statewide IT platform with centralized server at the police headquarters linked to every Saanjh Kendra enabled centralized data uploading and access, providing citizens with copies of FlRs, untraced reports, no objection certificates, etc., at a click of a button, in a time bound frame. Related ItemsPunjablast_img read more

Four HR Met Rout of Nationals

first_imgPORT ST. LUCIE, FL — Curtis Granderson and David Wright hit consecutive home runs off Stephen Strasburg in the bottom of the third inning, leading the Mets to a 10-2 win over the Washington Nationals on Saturday.Strasburg, making his first start since March 17 and only his third Grapefruit League start because of toe and ankle injuries, allowed four runs on four hits in four innings.“It was good to get the pitch count up there,” said Strasburg, who threw 70 pitches. “Obviously I was cruising early and then one bad inning, but I got the pitches. I’m sure I’ll feel a lot better next time.”Strasburg, who is slotted as the Nationals’ third starter in the rotation this season, struck out two and walked two. He said his turned ankle, which caused him to skip his last start, was not much of an issue Saturday.“It’s kind of like a trust factor,” he said. “If you sprain your ankle real bad, you’re bracing for it. It’s hard to get over that. But I didn’t really feel anything alarming, so I think it’s progress. I just have to keep going out there and I’m sure it will be an afterthought soon,” he said.Mets starter Jacob deGrom gave up one run — a long home run to right field by Bryce Harper in the top of the sixth inning. DeGrom allowed four hits in seven innings, struck out four and walked two.Lucas Duda had a home run and triple for the Mets, and Johnny Monell also connected.STARTING TIMEDeGrom’s seven innings were the most by a Mets starter this spring. The NL Rookie of the Year threw 81 pitches during his outing.“I felt good,” deGrom said. “That’s the most stretched out I’ve been all spring, and I felt really good out there today.“I struggled a little bit. I don’t know if I lost concentration or something with those two four-pitch walks. That’s the main thing today, but the spring has been going pretty smooth.”“I’m still trying to work on things. I was getting under my changeup today. And that’s what I fell behind Bryce with before he hit the home run,” he said.TRAINER’S ROOMNationals: Manager Matt Williams said first baseman Ryan Zimmerman (shoulder, back) is “feeling fine” and should return to the lineup in the next few days. Zimmerman was injured Friday diving for a ball and left the game early.Mets: Reliever Vic Black (shoulder) threw 20 pitches off a mound. He has not pitched in a game since March 9. … Closer Bobby Parnell (rehabbing from Tommy John surgery) is scheduled to throw in a minor league game Sunday. … All-Star 2B Daniel Murphy (hamstring) had five at-bats in a minor league game Saturday. Manager Terry Collins said Murphy will not play in any more Grapefruit League games this spring, but will play in minor league games.POWER SURGEThe Mets have hit 35 home runs in 26 games this spring, the most of any Grapefruit League team. Michael Cuddyer leads the team with five homers, Wright has four and Granderson has three.Collins said not to read too much into those numbers, though.“The wind’s blowing, the weather’s been warm and the ball carries,” Collins said. “We’ve got some power — I’m not saying we don’t have any power — but you have to be careful because we aren’t playing at Citi Field. Especially in April when the wind’s blowing in and it’s cold, but we’ve got some power.”TweetPinShare0 Shareslast_img read more

Premier League Fan of the Week

first_imgFan of the Week Fan of the Week: Depressing for Chelsea as Man City ‘a lot better than us’ Goal Last updated 2 years ago 04:00 1/10/2017 FacebookTwitterRedditcopy Cesar Azpilicueta Chelsea Manchester City Premier League Getty Fan of the Week Chelsea v Manchester City Chelsea Manchester City Premier League Blues supporter Charlie Saunders couldn’t pull too many positives as his team came away from the high stakes Premier League clash with zero points Follow Goal on Twitter and Instagram  for more Fan of the Week videos and extensive Premier League coverage for the new 2017-18 season.last_img

9 Ways to Save Lives Through Maternal and Newborn Health Integration

first_imgPosted on March 9, 2015October 27, 2016By: Katie Millar, Technical Writer, Women and Health Initiative, Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public HealthClick 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 email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)At a standing room only event last week at The Forum at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, global experts gathered to discuss the need for, barriers to, and the way forward for maternal and newborn integration. But what is integration and why is it so desperately needed?Every year approximately 300,000 women and 5.5 million newborns, including stillborns, die needlessly. The causes of these deaths are often similar since the mother and her newborn are inextricably linked both socially and biologically.For the panel, Putting Mothers and Babies First: Benefits Across a Lifetime, Ana Langer, Director of the Maternal Health Task Force; Joy Riggs-Perla, Director of Saving Newborn Lives at Save the Children; Alicia Yamin, Policy Director of the François-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights and Kirsten Gagnaire, Executive Director of the Mobile Alliance for Maternal Action (MAMA), presented the health, rights, and technological advantages to integrating maternal and newborn health financing, policies, training, and service delivery.Why is integration important?A woman’s health before conception, during pregnancy, and after her baby is born has a direct impact on the health of her child and the rest of her family. “Biologically the health, the nutritional status, and the well-being of the mother in general strongly influence the chances of survival and well-being of the fetus during pregnancy, the newborn later and even older children,” shared Langer. Since a woman is the primary caretaker of her family, if her health suffers, everyone is affected.Recent research from Dr. Yamin quantifies this impact. In South Africa, Tanzania, Malawi, and Ethiopia, if a mother dies during pregnancy or childbirth, there is a 50-80% chance that her newborn will die before reaching his first birthday. The impact of the death of the mother also reached far into the future. When a mother dies there are higher rates of family dissolution; early drop out of school, especially for girls; and nutritional deficits.What are the challenges to integrating?Although it is easy to see how the health of the mother would directly affect the health of her fetus, newborn and children, integrated care is rarely seen. Maternal health, newborn health, and child health are siloed as separate initiatives across the health care spectrum: from the policy, donor, financing and monitoring levels to the academic, health system, program and NGO levels. But these problems are seen beyond the program and country level. These “challenges also happen at the global level, failing to provide an enabling environment for those changes at the country level to happen. So too often, we see that different initiatives are either targeted to mothers or to babies and don’t make a good enough effort to bring them closer together,” shared Langer.Divisions in providing maternal and newborn health include separate pre-service training in maternal and newborn health for health care workers, rare HIV-testing and treatment of an infant if the HIV-positive mom dies in childbirth and separate global initiatives, among many others. These persistent separations have created a dearth of evidence of how best to implement integrated maternal and newborn care.Key areas that remain segregated are ministries of health and data collection systems. Joy Riggs-Perla shared that “there’s often a separation [of maternal and newborn health] organizationally in a Ministry of Health… That can cause problems with program coordination. It can cause problems where one or the other gets more or less emphasis. And so that can actually lead to problems in service delivery.” In addition, Riggs-Perla addressed the crucial need to collect data on both mothers and newborns so that programs and health systems recognize and synchronize their approaches to improve health outcomes along the continuum of care. “I think the bottom line in all of this is that if people think about care from a client-centered perspective, or a client-oriented perspective, you naturally come to the continuum of care. And that helps solve some of these problems. Too many of our health services are organized at the convenience of the providers,” concluded Riggs-Perla.An additional barrier to integration may be societal discrimination. “Ultimately maternal mortality is the culmination of layers of structural, and discrimination, and exclusion that women face in society. And often women and children face or experience their poverty and marginalization through their context with indifferent and dysfunctional health systems,” shared Yamin.How to break silosIn order to provide comprehensive care that benefits both the woman and her child, current silos in maternal and newborn health need to dissolve.MAMA is working to bring integrated information to pregnant women and mothers precisely when they need it. Through mobile technology, both text and voice messages are used to provide timed and targeted information during pregnancy through their child’s third birthday. These messages are specific to the local context and language and include a wide range of information from nutrition during pregnancy and breastfeeding to cognitive development and immunizations for their children.Another programmatic example is from the TSHIP project in Nigeria, where misoprostol and chlorhexidine are now distributed together by community health workers: misoprostol to prevent postpartum hemorrhage in women and chlorhexidine to prevent umbilical cord infection in newborns.The panel provided many potential solutions to the chasm in maternal and newborn health:Integrated national costed plans of action: “[Integration is] very, very difficult if it doesn’t start at the beginning: once budgets are separated, programs are designed, job descriptions are formed” and integration is nearly impossible – Yamin.Integrated pre-service training of health care providersIntegrated performance and health outcome indicatorsExcluding initiatives that are narrow, categorical and verticalInitiatives that strengthen health systemsPrograms that allow for flexibility and learning, both in activities and fundingDiverse partnerships: “We are increasingly finding ourselves needing to work in a partnership way: in public-private partnerships, bringing in UN agencies, bringing in the host country governments, bringing in bilateral funders, foundations and [the] corporate It takes a tremendous amount of aligning of agendas and understanding how each of these different sectors and entities works, and what their perspectives are. [But,] ultimately I think we get better results from it.” – GagnaireWhile these strategies are promising, there is still a lack of research on integration and so information exchange is key. In order to address this need, Dr. Langer shared news of the upcoming Global Maternal Newborn Health Conference, which will “provide a space for information exchange, for productive debate and for discussion about maternal and newborn health and how to bring it closer together.”For more details from this event, continue to follow our blog this week to hear more details from Joy Riggs-Perla, Alicia Yamin, Kristen Gagnaire, and Ana Langer. Also, to learn more about integration, check out our MNH Integration Blog Series.Share this: ShareEmailPrint To learn more, read:last_img read more

ESPN Analyst Releases Score Prediction For Ohio State-Northwestern

first_imgJustin Fields during his first game at Ohio State.COLUMBUS, OH – AUGUST 31: Quarterback Justin Fields #1 of the Ohio State Buckeyes completes a pass to K.J. Hill #14 of the Ohio State Buckeyes for a first down in the third quarter against the Florida Atlantic Owls at Ohio Stadium on August 31, 2019 in Columbus, Ohio. Ohio State defeated Florida Atlantic 45-21. (Photo by Jamie Sabau/Getty Images)Ohio State will look to move to 7-0 on the season when it takes on Northwestern Friday night in Evanston. The meeting is a rematch of last year’s Big Ten Championship Game.Every week, ESPN analyst Bill Connelly releases score predictions based off his SP+ rankings. Connelly describes his SP+ formula as “a tempo- and opponent-adjusted measure of college football efficiency.”This week, Connelly is predicting several of the top games to be decided by one score or less. Ohio State-Northwestern is not one of those games.He’s got the Buckeyes winning 34-7. 🔥 WEEK 8 SP+ PICKS 🔥* Ohio St 34, NW’ern 7* UF 27, SC 21* Oregon 26, Washington 24* SMU 27, Temple 24* Baylor 30, OSU 29* Utah 32, ASU 21* PSU 28, Michigan 20* Bama 41, Tennessee 14(Not the best evening slate, huh?) pic.twitter.com/6z0mdCfpEO— Bill Connelly (@ESPN_BillC) October 16, 2019Considering Northwestern is 1-4 on the season and 0-3 in league play, this prediction makes sense. No doubt the Wildcats will be looking to make a statement in primetime, but the talent gap in this game is quite wide.Originally scheduled for 8:30 p.m. ET Friday night on FS1, the game has been switched over to Big Ten Network. FS1 will carry Game 5 of the American League Championship Series instead.Ohio State is 1-0 against the Big Ten West this season, having beaten Nebraska 48-7 on September 28. After facing the Wildcats this weekend, the Buckeyes have a showdown next week against the top team in the West, undefeated Wisconsin.last_img read more

Howe out to stop City and Sterling

first_imgBournemouth’s poor record against Manchester City is inspiring Cherries boss Eddie Howe to oversee an improvement, and he believes halting Raheem Sterling will be key to avoiding defeat this weekend.Howe’s men won promotion to the Premier League in 2015, yet they have never beaten City in the competition, losing all eight of their top-flight meetings by an aggregate score of 25-3.But the 41-year-old says Bournemouth’s dismal recent history in this fixture – with City set to visit on Sunday – does not cause him concern, and instead provides a motivating factor. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream “It inspires me,” Howe said at his pre-match news conference. “We’ve got to try to turn that around and use that record to inspire us in this game.”I don’t think we’re the only team to suffer a bad record against Manchester City in recent years.”They’re an outstanding team and, every time we’ve played against them, we’ve come off the pitch learning more about ourselves and what we have to do to grow and become better.”We try to embrace these challenges and not look at it fearfully.”I think the two games against them last season were pretty strong (3-0 and 1-0 defeats). We felt we were competitive without showing our best attributes, but we managed to limit their main strengths for spells of the games.”They’ve just got quality and they can hurt you in any moment of the game and we’ve just come on the wrong side of the games against them, but I’d like to think we’re getting closer.”We know historically that, if we perform at our very best, we’ve got a chance of beating anybody and I think that’s been the story of our Premier League journey.”Sterling has been a particularly problematic figure for Bournemouth, netting eight goals in seven meetings, along with a pair of assists.The England forward hit the first Premier League hat-trick of his career in his first match against Bournemouth in 2015 and has since developed into a proven goalscorer, netting four times in his opening two league games this term.Howe said: “He’s a player who’s done very well against us in recent seasons and he’s an outstanding talent.”He’s added a huge, consistent run of goals to his game, which has made him even better, and he’s certainly someone who we’ll have to keep quiet.”You look through their team though and they’ve got other players in the attacking positions that you’re going to have to deal with, but we hope to keep him quiet and nullify his strengths. He’s certainly in very good form at the moment.”last_img read more

Ex-Liverpool man Skrtel leaves Atalanta after 24 days

first_imgMartin Skrtel has terminated his Atalanta contract by mutual consent less than a month after joining from Fenerbahce and has been replaced by Simon Kjaer on deadline day.Skrtel, 34, is reported to have fallen out with coach Gian Piero Gasperini regarding slow first-team integration and the two parties agreed to end their association just 24 days after the defender joined.The former Liverpool defender had spent the three previous seasons at Turkish giants Fenerbahce before departing the club on a free transfer this summer. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Previously, Skrtel enjoyed a nine-year spell at Anfield, which saw him claim one trophy, the 2011-12 League Cup.He also finished as a runner-up for the Premier League title in both 2008-09 and 2013-14, while missing out on a Europa League crown as Liverpool fell to Sevilla in the 2016 final.Skrtel featured in the Champions League in two of his three seasons at Fenerbahce, and appeared set to return to the tournament with Atalanta, who will appear in the competition for the first time in their history this season.However, if he does feature in the Champions League, it will not be with Atalanta, as their partnership has come to an abrupt end.A statement from the club simply stated: ”Atalanta BC announces that it has consensually terminated the contract with Martin Skrtel.”Atalanta moved efficiently to secure a replacement, however, with Denmark international Kjaer arriving on loan from Sevilla, where he had spent two seasons.Although generally first choice at the back in those two campaigns, the signings of Jules Kounde and Diego Carlos saw Kjaer fall down the pecking order and he becomes the third player to swap Sevilla for Atalanta in this window after Luis Muriel and Guilherme Arana.Kjaer is the 19th player to leave Sevilla since Monchi’s return as sporting director, while they added a 13th new signing of this window with the deadline-day acquisition of goalkeeper Yassine Bounou. Bounou arrives on loan from Girona with a purchase option.Atalanta had mixed fortunes their opening two Serie A games of the season, winning one and losing one, and return from the international break against Genoa on September 14. They will then face Dinamo Zabreb midweek, the first of their matches in Champions League Group C, which also includes Manchester City and Shakhtar.last_img read more

Lingard out of England squad through illness

first_imgJesse Lingard has been ruled out of England’s Euro 2020 qualifiers against Bulgaria and Kosovo through illness.The midfielder was not named in the squad for Saturday’s visit of Bulgaria, with the Three Lions confirming soon after that he will return to Manchester United.Lingard has endured a difficult start to the season with his club side, failing to make an impact in the Red Devils’ opening three games before being dropped to the substitutes’ bench for the draw with Southampton last weekend. Article continues below Editors’ Picks What is Manchester United’s ownership situation and how would Kevin Glazer’s sale of shares affect the club? Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream No timescale has been put on his return, but he will hope to be fit for United’s Premier League clash against Leicester City next Saturday.#ThreeLions midfielder @JesseLingard has returned to his club through illness.Get well soon, Jesse!  pic.twitter.com/ixB5MWgvdU— England (@England) September 7, 2019 England manager Gareth Southgate confirmed to ITV before a meeting with Bulgaria that Lingard would no longer be available to him during the current round of international fixtures.He said: “We decided to send [Jesse] home.”He hasn’t been able to train the last couple of days. We don’t think he’ll be ready for Tuesday.”Southgate also revealed that he has no intention of bringing in cover for Lingard.He added: “We’ve still got 23 players [so won’t call up a replacement for Lingard].”England have now lost two United stars from their current squad, with Aaron Wan-Bissaka also forced to withdraw from the ranks.He had been hoping to put himself in contention for a senior debut.Jesse Lingard Manchester United 2019-20Lingard is another to have missed out on a chance to prove his worth amid a testing period for the 26-year-old.He has not provided a goal or assist at club level in 2019, with Southgate having had to defend his selection of the Red Devils academy graduate.The Three Lions boss said: “I think you’d have to say I’ve seen him have better spells for United.”I think Ole has a young, energetic team, and I think Jesse’s pressing and the energy he brings to that has been an important part of what they’ve tried to do in the first few games.”The inclusion of Jesse for us is partly because his form for us has always been good.”I know there were stats on his goals. He was only involved in four games for us last season because of injury – two starts and two off the bench.”He scored two and had a goal disallowed when he came on in the Nations League game. He had a very good World Cup.”When you’re selecting a team, there’s half an eye on club form but also I don’t remember a game where he’s been really poor for us.”He has different attributes. I think for him and for everybody else, there is serious competition and if they aren’t scoring for us or they aren’t scoring for their clubs, that can make things more difficult.”But, equally, I think it’s good that we support him at this moment, in that you could argue club-wise, he’s on the fringes and whether he should be ahead of others.”But I don’t think there are too many that we haven’t included that should be ahead of him, and his performance for us has been very, very good.”last_img read more

Xavi: Managing Barca no problem – I know what Messi is like

first_imgBarcelona legend Xavi says he would be up to the challenge of managing former team-mates like Lionel Messi, Luis Suarez and Sergio Busquets at the club.Current Barca boss Ernesto Valverde is under pressure at Camp Nou. Despite winning La Liga last season, their Champions League collapse at Liverpool has left a sour taste and they have started the new campaign in disastrous form.They hit a new low with a 2-0 defeat at newly-promoted Granada on Saturday, and speculation has begun to circulate suggesting Valverde’s days in the job are numbered. Xavi, long tipped as a future coach, is one man whose name has been mentioned. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Time for another transfer? Giroud’s Chelsea spell set to end like his Arsenal career The 39-year-old former midfielder is currently manager of Al-Sadd in Qatar. His side have won all three of their league fixtures this season, scoring 13 goals in the process, and are in the semi-finals of the Asian Champions League.But Xavi is not thinking of the role as an audition for the Barca job, though the Camp Nou hotseat is one he would seemingly like to fill.“I don’t know if it will be a bridge to Barca,” he told Catalan newspaper Ara. “The only thing that worries me now is doing well here, winning titles and making mistakes in some aspects to learn for the future.“It wouldn’t be a problem [to manage former team-mates]. I know what Leo is like, and Luis [Suarez], Busquets, Jordi [Alba], [Gerard] Pique or Sergi [Roberto].“I know how they train, their capacity for leadership, I can tell if they are sad or angry. I hope as a coach I could have three, five, eight or 10 players that I already knew and that I already had a good relationship with.“[Messi] is a player who, if you convince him, he can even be a brilliant defender. He has physical and mental speed. He has everything. If you convince him to run, what will the others do? They will run twice as much.”Ernesto Valverde Barcelona 2019-20Saturday’s defeat to Granada came after Barca were lucky to escape with a draw at Borussia Dortmund, in the first game of their Champions League campaign.The harrowing European defeats to Liverpool and Roma in the past two seasons weigh heavily over the club and Valverde, but with bad form now spilling over into domestic matters, many fans are losing patience.Some have pointed to the underwhelming performances of new signing Frenkie de Jong, who has generally been played in a more advanced role than for the Netherlands and previous club Ajax.“The problem in the midfield is that nobody is doing any defensive work, so they suffer when they have to retreat,” Xavi said.“The coach is very important, but without the players there is nothing to do.”last_img read more

Solskjaer facing new problem at Man Utd

first_imgOle Gunnar Solskjaer admits a new challenge has presented itself at Manchester United, with an under-fire coach facing different problems to those endured late in the 2018-19 campaign.The Red Devils stumbled over the finishing line last season, with an alarming dip following the award of a permanent contract to a coach who impressed in an interim post.Further struggles have been endured on the back of a summer which saw just three additions made to the playing staff at Old Trafford. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Time for another transfer? Giroud’s Chelsea spell set to end like his Arsenal career Just nine points have been taken from eight Premier League games so far, with a 1-0 defeat at Newcastle last time out leaving United 12th in the top-flight standings.Solskjaer is seeing questions asked of his ability to inspire those at his disposal, with it suggested that another change in the dugout could be made despite acceptance that a rebuilding job will take time.The man calling the shots at present concedes that he faces a tough task, with there no obvious solution to the difficulties being suffered by a team that went “flat” last term.Solskjaer told talkSPORT when quizzed on how things can be turned around: “Of course, everything that happens at Man United, with the size of this club, will be magnified because of the poor results.“It’s a bad period, we’ve got to be honest enough, this period after we beat Leicester has been a poor one.“We’ve lost to West Ham, we’ve lost to Newcastle and it’s hard for us to take, but we’ll get through it. That’s the key – the attitude, culture and work-rate of the players.“This is not a similar situation to what I felt was happening towards the end of last season where we just went flat.“This is a hard-working group with a desire, we’re just lacking in a few departments at the moment.”Ole Gunnar Solskjaer Manchester United 2019-20Solskjaer’s task is not about to get any easier as United will return to action after the international break with a visit from Liverpool.Jurgen Klopp’s Reds are yet to drop a point this season and are now eight clear at the summit.They promise to provide another stern test of United’s credentials, but Solskjaer believes they could be ideal opponents for the Red Devils as form tends to go out of the window when two arch-rivals lock horns.He added: “It’s perfect timing because at the moment everyone needs to clear their heads.“We’ve got Liverpool coming up and we’ve got a very long period to prepare for that one. I know the fans and the players will be up for that one.” Check out Goal’s Premier League 2019-20 fantasy football podcast for game tips, debate and rivalries.last_img read more

Report: Australia 5-0 Nepal

first_imgHarry Souttar marked his international debut with a brace and Jamie Maclaren notched a hat-trick as Australia settled for a 5-0 win over minnows Nepal in World Cup qualifying.Born in Aberdeen, defender Souttar changed his allegiance to his mother’s homeland earlier this year and enjoyed a first appearance to savour at GIO Stadium in Canberra.The Fleetwood Town centre-back repaid Graham Arnold’s faith with a headed double after a pair of early finishes from Maclaren, who completed the scoring and his treble in the closing moments. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Ox-rated! Dream night in Genk for Liverpool ace after injury nightmare Messi a man for all Champions League seasons – but will this really be Barcelona’s? Are Chelsea this season’s Ajax? Super-subs Batshuayi & Pulisic show Blues can dare to dream Time for another transfer? Giroud’s Chelsea spell set to end like his Arsenal career Australia’s apparent reluctance to overexert themselves meant the expected avalanche of goals never truly arrived, though the Socceroos did move top of Group B, at least until Kuwait meet Jordan later on Thursday.Kiran Chemjong’s failure to grasp a Craig Goodwin shot gifted Maclaren the sixth-minute opener and the striker quickly doubled his tally, heading home after Rhyan Grant nodded Aziz Behich’s cross back into the danger zone.Our first goal on home soil on the Road to the @FIFAWorldCup Qatar 2022!: @FoxFootball #AUSvNEP #AllForTheSocceroos pic.twitter.com/PGJpXhYUjw — Caltex Socceroos (@Socceroos) October 10, 2019 The towering Souttar was proving a nuisance at set-pieces and managed to stoop to meet Goodwin’s corner for Australia’s third in the 23rd minute.A fourth would have followed on the stroke of half-time if not for the match officials, who disallowed a deflected Mathew Leckie effort for offside despite Ananta Tamang being responsible for the touch that deceived goalkeeper Chemjong.There was no denying Souttar a double, though, as his 59th-minute header from Aaron Mooy’s cross dribbled in off Dinesh Rajbanshi.Arnold turned to his bench after the hour but no other Australian was able to add their name to the scoresheet against the world’s 161st-ranked nation, leaving Maclaren to claim the matchball as he fired home in the 90th minute following Jackson Irvine’s cushioned control.What does it mean? Socceroos miss chance to further bolster goal difference Kuwait, the team Australia brushed aside 3-0 last month, began the road to Qatar by putting seven past Nepal, so there were expectations for the Socceroos to fill their boots in the nation’s capital.The long distances many of Arnold’s players covered en route to Australia can be considered a mitigating factor but the former Sydney FC boss will expect a greater degree of ruthlessness against Chinese Taipei next week, particularly as his team have gone goalless in four of eight games in 2019.Maclaren makes case for more minutes One man who did his job in attack was Melbourne City forward Maclaren.Prolific at A-League level, he has found goals harder to come by in the international arena but can be pleased to have added three more to the one he notched at the Asian Cup in January.Goals elude Goodwin Unlike Maclaren, Saudi Arabia-based Goodwin let opportunities go begging too frequently.The 27-year-old attempted five shots without scoring, a return that needs to improve if he is to be in contention for a starting berth on a more regular basis.What’s next? Australia travel to Kaohsiung to meet bottom-placed Chinese Taipei on Tuesday, the same day as Nepal’s difficult date with Jordan in Amman. read morelast_img read more

Together, Mountain View softball reaches 3A semifinals

first_img Mountain View junior pitcher Sydney Brown throws a pitch during the Thunder’s 10-5 opening round win over Juanita in the 3A state softball tournament at the RAC in Lacey. Brown struck out 20 over her two complete game wins. (John Becerra Jr./For The Columbian) Together, Mountain View softball reaches 3A semifinals Most of 4A softball state rained out on Friday GO Share: LACEY — The Mountain View Thunder are making some big noise in the 3A state softball tournament.They defeated Juanita 10-5 in its opening round game, then outlasted the Snohomish Panthers 4-3 to make the semifinals for the first time since 2007.Mountain View faces off against Yelm at 9 a.m. Saturday.“That was one of our toughest games since we played Skyview in preseason,” head coach Ashleigh Byrne said. “It was nerve wracking. We made some errors that they took advantage of like we do with teams. Pulling it together was huge.”Junior pitcher Sydney Brown was ecstatic after the game — especially after watching freshman right fielder Mary Fogg make a diving catch for the final out. Subscribe Today Sophomore catcher Kinsey Martin added a big run with a solo home run in the second, a high arching shot that sailed over the left field fence.That was all the Thunder could muster against starting pitcher Jordan Crawford as she shut them down the rest of the way.Snohomish closed the gap to within one in the fifth inning as they scored two runs on an infield hit and an error when junior second baseman Maelyn Ocampo couldn’t hang onto a pop fly.Brown credited senior co-captain Serena Fogg for calling time so everyone could get refocused.“We as a team just needed to calm down, so I said this is our game. We’re still ahead,” Brown said. “We’ve been here before. So we just calmed down and took a breath and that really helped us.” Share: Published: May 24, 2019, 9:25pm Tags Receive latest stories and local news in your email: The Columbian is becoming a rare example of a news organization with local, family ownership. Subscribe today to support local journalism and help us to build a stronger community. Camas will play Henry Jackson at 8 a.m. Saturday and Battle Ground will face Chiawana at the same time in first-round games.Skyview will face Lake Stevens in a quarterfinal game scheduled for noon. They also got help from a base running mistake by Anna Robinson, who ran too far down the third base line and was thrown out by Martin.Mountain View loaded the bases with one out in its half of the fifth, but sophomore Tenley Winters hit into a double play. The Thunder got out of trouble in the sixth when they turned a double play of its own.With the big plays turned in by the defense, Brown did the rest, striking out seven in the win. She also struck out 13 in the Thunder’s win against the Rebels.“They’re coming together,” Byrne said. “They’ve got that team unity. Our team motto is T.E.A.M. — Together Everyone Achieves More — and they really feel like they’re doing that. It’s like a little sisterhood.” “It’s extremely good” we pulled off the win, she said. “It was a tough game at the end but my defense really came through, especially at the end.”The Thunder came through with its offense in the first inning against the Panthers. Fogg drove in senior outfielder Saydee Christensen with a single, then Serena Fogg and Brown each drove in runs with sacrifice flies.“It showed that we can do it and adjust to their pitching,” Byrne said. “We got it right away.”The Panthers loaded the bases in its half of the first but could only get a run across on a passed ball. Brown got all three outs via strikeout. Mountain View Thunder By John Becerra Jr., For The Columbian Prairie hung tough on a long day to stay in contention for a trophy. They lost to Garfield 6-1 but rebounded to eliminate Edmonds-Woodway 9-2 and Lake Washington 4-0. They’ll play Snohomish at 9 a.m. Saturday.“I was proud of my girls for hanging in there against Garfield and I was proud of our fight over the next two games,” co-head coach Mariah Dawson said. “It was the same way at districts.”Rain rules at 4ASkyview was one of the lucky ones at the 4A state softball tournament in Spokane.The Storm beat Rogers of Puyallup 9-7 on Friday before rain washed out half of the first-round games. By signing up you are agreeing to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.last_img read more

Avoya Travel Creates New Agency Dashboard To Increase Travel Network Sales Success

first_imgAvoya Travel’s Leading Vacation Platform Improves Travel Planning and Supports Agents  Ft. Lauderdale, Fla. – September 17, 2018 – Avoya Travel®, one of the world’s most innovative travel brands, has created and launched the industry-leading Avoya Agency Dashboard™ to give Independent Agencies in the Avoya Travel Network™ deeper insights into their agencies’ performance that were never available before. Using advanced technology, Avoya is empowering Independent Agencies with actionable, transparent metrics so travel professionals can make the best data-based business decisions, apply effective strategies that lead to increasing bookings and incomes, and ultimately provide even better vacation planning experiences for customers. Built in-house by Avoya from the ground up, Avoya’s Agency Dashboard strategically leverages robust performance data to enhance Independent Agency support in the rapidly growing Avoya Network. By automating complex reports, data is brought into a single interface – the Dashboard – that is integrated intoAgent Power™, Avoya’s award-winning Independent Agency Operating System™. Through the Agency Dashboard, Independent Agencies now have direct, daily access to better and more easy-to-understand metrics that are crucial to running a successful business, growing sales, and servicing clients. “Like a dashboard in a car or airplane that provides crucial information as to where you are, where you’re going, how fast or slowly, and the condition of your engine, Avoya Travel’s innovative Agency Dashboard does the same for Independent Agencies in the Avoya Travel Network and their success as business owners,” said Jeff Anderson, Executive Vice President, Avoya Travel. Avoya’s Agency Dashboard includes reports and charts in one place that give Independent Agency owners deeper visibility into their agency’s performance than was ever available before – all in one place. It also gives individual agent performance metrics, allowing Independent Agency owners to more efficiently track the success of their own agents as well as overall business. “Avoya Travel’s Agency Dashboard is an impressive resource for my business because having so much insightful data available in a customizable interface helps me be a more strategic agency owner. I particularly love seeing the year-over-year comparisons, my commission trends, customer ratings as it translates to my repeat business, and easily following sales and closing rate percentage trends,” said Susan Wolfson, owner of Go Astro Travel LLC. “As a former computer programmer, I value how Avoya Travel continues to pioneer new technologies, like Avoya’s Agency Dashboard, and lead in providing the best support for my success and the growth of my Independent Agency.” Using innovative front-end technology, Avoya’s Agency Dashboard is fully responsive and reactive so it responds to user input with immediate feedback without page reloads or pauses. It is a prototype for the company’s new front-end technology moving forward and is already being integrated on Avoya’s consumer website. The Agency Dashboard, and the state-of-the-art technology that powers it, is integral to the mission of the company’s Avoya 2025 plan. This will further establish Avoya as the number one vacation platform that supports Independent Agencies, supplier partners, and customers. While the Agency Dashboard delivers on Phase 1 of Avoya 2025 as the most recent enhancement to the Independent Agency side of Avoya’s platform, Avoya will continue evolving the interface so it remains cutting-edge and offers maximum support to the Independent Agencies in the Avoya Network. “We are extremely excited about the Agency Dashboard because not only does it provide unparalleled support for Independent Agencies in the Avoya Travel Network with empowerment through strategic data, it also marks another milestone in Avoya Travel’s mission to become the number one vacation platform for customers, travel professionals, and supplier partners,” said Jeff Anderson. “With Avoya’s Agency Dashboard and our significant technology advancement, Avoya Travel continues its tradition of innovation and position as a leader in the travel industry.”  About Avoya TravelAvoya Travel is a family-owned company with a longstanding reputation for being one of the world’s most innovative marketing and travel technology companies. As an American Express Travel Representative for more than 30 years, and one of their largest sellers of cruises and tours, Avoya is deeply committed to Integrity and Professionalism™, service, and value in every aspect of planning cruises and vacations. Through an elite network of independently owned and operated travel agencies, Avoya provides exclusive discounts, amenities, and first-class customer service to travelers worldwide. Cruise lines and travel partners recognize this, as Avoya has received numerous accolades, including being repeatedly named Travel Partner of the Year by Norwegian Cruise Line, Royal Caribbean, Celebrity Cruises, Carnival Cruises, American Express, Oceania Cruises, MSC Cruises, and more. Today, Avoya is headquartered in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, with support offices throughout the United States. Travel agency owners, travel professionals, and others interested in owning and operating their own travel business should contact Avoya Travel at 800-521-2597 or visit www.JoinAvoya.com. Travelers interested in booking their next vacation with Avoya Travel, should call 800-753-1463 or visit www.AvoyaTravel.com.last_img read more

Scenic Showcases Scenic Eclipse World Class Submarine

first_imgBoston and Vancouver, BC, September 2018 – Scenic Eclipse, the world’s first Discovery Yachts, are redefining the standard of ocean cruising, providing guests with unparalleled underwater experiences on board the Scenic Neptune U Boat Worx Cruise Submarine 7. Capable of diving to 300 meters, or 984 feet, with seating for up to six guests, the submarine has been custom-built for optimal sightseeing of marine wonders, offering guests an unforgettable excursion into the wide blue depths, and unique access to some of nature’s most beautiful sites. Scenic Founder and Chairman, Glen Moroney, says the submarine will offer guests a unique opportunity to go below and beyond. “Scenic has always sought to venture beyond the horizon, and with our submarine we provide guests with the opportunity to enjoy access to some of nature’s most beautiful marine environments. From inside the U-Boat Worx submersibles, each guest will enjoy an uninterrupted view thanks to the strategic placement of all components and the use of an ultra-clear acrylic hull, expertly engineered to make you feel “at one” with the ocean,” Mr. Moroney added.  The U-Boat Worx submarine is designed to meet international noise standards, and to provide unmatched comfort, space and style, with maximum legroom and headroom while keeping overall weight and size to a minimum. This combination delivers the ultimate diving experience. Internal climate control and a surround sound music system form part of the fine detailing, together with the optimum ergo dynamics to facilitate ease of boarding and disembarking. The submarine design consists of a three-person pod on the front and at the back of the sub for a total of six guests plus the pilot, who is located behind the guests. The seats are mounted on a platform that can swivel 180 degrees, so the guests are able to see both sides of the submarine. Strong exterior lights will allow guests to take in the colors and details of wrecks and other underwater sights.  “The sub is able to do from 8 to 12 dives per day, depending on the length of dive, giving as many guests as possible access to this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” said Mr. Moroney. “Because the cabin is pressurized, there is also no need for a slow ascent or descent. One of the thrills for guests is a fast, upward journey where they pop out from below the ocean with a splash”. Based in the Netherlands, U-Boat Worx is the world’s largest manned submersible manufacturer. For more than 12 years, they have delivered private submersibles to a variety of discerning individuals and organizations, culminating in one of the largest fleets worldwide. Melding world-class innovation with incredible luxury, the Scenic Eclipse offers: 114 all-verandah suites range in size from 345 ft² to 2,659 ft²; 10 dining options – from Asian Fusion to French fine dining to a chef’s table to a poolside buffet; a 5,920 ft² spa with a well-equipped gym and separate yoga and Pilates studio; two six-guest helicopters and one six-guest submarine – to allow for explorations far beyond any done on expedition ships to date; a 240-seat theater for entertainment and lectures; indoor and outdoor plunge pools; butler service for all guests; and an almost 1:1 guest-to-staff ratio. And then there is the technology: innovative zero-speed stabilizer fins, 50% larger than standard to provide greater stability; the highest passenger ship ice class rating – Polar Class 6 (Ice Class 1A Super); redundancies in propulsion, navigation, safety systems and food refrigeration; state-of-the-art bridge systems; and a GPS dynamic positioning system allowing for stationary positioning without an anchor. Scenic Luxury Cruises & Tours has grown over its 31-year history to include award-winning, all-inclusive escorted tours that take participants to many of the world’s most fascinating destinations; two award-winning river cruise lines – Scenic and Emerald Waterways; and, launching January 2019, the world’s first Discovery Yacht – Scenic Eclipse. Emerald Waterways’ seven Star Ships offer deluxe cruises in Europe, and the Mekong, while Scenic’s 15 Space Ships offer truly all-inclusive, five-star river cruises in the same destinations as well as the Irrawaddy River in Myanmar. Additional information on these and other cruises, brochures and reservations can be obtained via travel agents; or in the US: www.scenicusa.com; phone 844-788-7985; or email: info@scenicusa.com: and in Canada: www.scenic.ca; phone (866) 689-8611; or email: canada@scenic.ca. Brochures can also be downloaded directly from the website.last_img read more

Tourism Minister Hails TPDCo

first_img Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, has hailed the Tourism Product Development Company Ltd (TPDCo) for its critical role in the advancement of the nation’s tourism sector.He said the entity continues to be a custodian of integrity and quality advancing the reputational value of the industry.“TPDCo stands in the gap between the promise made to the (tourists) in the marketplace and the experience they have when they get here,” the Minister pointedout.He was addressing TPDCo’s staff service awards luncheon at the Caymanas Golf and Country Club in St. Catherine on Tuesday (July 18).Minister Bartlett said the company will be required to play an even greater role as the country’s tourism product continues to evolve to meet the needs of themarketplace.“You have a larger role to play because the product is evolving; the experiences are changing and the attitude of our visitors and customers are equally inthat state of constant transition,” he pointed out.He said TPDCo will be required to be “nimble and adaptive” in order to ensure that Jamaica maintains its hold on tourism.Turning to developments at the Montego Bay Convention Centre (MBCC), Minister Bartlett said the facility registered a 65 per cent increase in revenue for thefiscal year ending March 31.There was also a 13 per cent reduction in operating expenses over the prior fiscal year and a 41 per cent increase in the number of meetings held at the MBCC.Mr. Bartlett informed that the MBCC is “now on the path for the first time to break even in its operational expenses over revenue”.“This tells you that with application, with serious management, with marketing…we have proven that a public good, which a convention centre provides, offers opportunities for economic activity in other areas,” he said.For his part, Chairman of the TPDCo, Ian Dear, congratulated the award recipients, who were recognised in the categories of Overachievers, Regional Star Performers, Innovator of the Year, Employee of the Year, and Manager of the Year.“As you receive your respective awards feel proud of your accomplishments and let these awards continue to motivate you to increased levels of productivity and inspire you to achieve improvements in the service quality to our stakeholders,” he urged.He told the members of staff that they are expected to deliver exceptional results in ensuring the continued success of tourism, which is a key sector for job creation, foreign exchange earnings and socio-economic empowerment.The Manager of the Year award went to Community Awareness Coordinator, Marlene Stephenson-Dally, for 2013/14 and 2014/15; and Former Procurement Manager, Julian Thompson for 2015/16.Employee of the Year for 2013/14 went to Doreen Forrester and Lorna Newsome for 2015/16. Minister Bartlett said the company will be required to play an even greater role as the country’s tourism product continues to evolve to meet the needs of the marketplace. “TPDCo stands in the gap between the promise made to the (tourists) in the marketplace and the experience they have when they get here,” the Minister pointed out. Tourism Minister, Hon. Edmund Bartlett, has hailed the Tourism Product Development Company Ltd (TPDCo) for its critical role in the advancement of the nation’s tourism sector. Story Highlightslast_img read more