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Archive for May 13th, 2007

Norway: Dead man nominated to run in municipal elections

Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

Norway’s Christian Coalition Party (KS) has nominated a dead man on their political list in Sarpsborg for this autumn’s local elections.
The KS, a small non-socialist party with strong religious roots, has an unusual election list in many respects, newspaper Vrt Land reports. Of the 13 candidates, five have asked to be dropped.

The third highest person doesn’t live in Sarpsborg, and the seventh candidate on the list has been dead for a year and a half.

“We have never received a list like this before. There is no preparation done here. The party should pull itself together and take this more seriously. Scraping together some names and sending in a list is fully legal, but it is customary to ask people first if they want to be on it,” said mayor Jan Engsmyr.

The KS sent a letter to its desired candidates, but had no direct verbal contact. The KS leader for stfold County, Kai Spydevold, does not regret the party’s methods, though he did admit that they shouldn’t have nominated a dead man.

Deputy party leader Morten Sveven was to call and apologize to the deceased’s family, and said that involuntary listing was not common practice for the KS.

By (Aftenposten English Web Desk/NTB)

Lifted and published by African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525 source. aftenpostenEng

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Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

The world’s most famous soccer player will be questioned by police in Brazil about his links to a property development in Natal, part of the international hunt for Norwegian criminal gang members. by police

A coordinated effort by police in Norway and Brazil on Wednesday led to the arrest of 17 persons in Norway and a further 10 in Brazil. The suspects are believed to be linked to the Pakistani B-Gang, and the raids were aimed at crippling their business dealings and arresting key members.

Five of six brothers believed to be the central family in the gang are now in custody, and the raids in Brazil focused on property development authorities link to money laundering.

The apartment complex King’s Flat in Natal was one of the spots raided in Brazil and according to news site Nettavisen Pel is one of the partners in this project and will be questioned about his role.

A Norwegian is behind the King’s Flat development but Pel is the public face of the project. The Norwegian was arrested on Wednesday.

Nettavisen cited a Brazilian police officer who said that Pel would be called in for questioning.

Assets worth between NOK 300 and 400 million (USD 50-66 million) were confiscated in the Brazilian action on Wednesday.

Aftenposten’s Norwegian reporter
Peter Markovski
Aftenposten English Web Desk
Jonathan Tisdall

Lifted and published by African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525 source.aftenpostenEng

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Threats from Norway, says the controversial Canadian journalist

Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

Controversial Canadian journalist and filmmaker Irshad Manji says that many of the death threats she receives stem from Scandinavia.
Irshad Manji travels the world trying to re-ignite a tradition of critical, independent thinking in Islam.

Speaking at Nordic Media Days in Bergen, Manji, a Muslim herself, spoke of the challenges in communication with the Muslim world.

Manji, the author of The Trouble with Islam Today and the maker of acclaimed documentary Faith without Fear, discussed the open spread of extreme Islamism in the West, and the importance of communication as a support to reform-friendly Muslims.

“Western journalists are too careful. They feel ignorant and do not dare to ask the critical questions. Western ignorance is a form of racism in the worst sense, and fundamentalism gets off too lightly,” Manji said.

Manji also revealed unique footage of an interview with a leading fundamentalist from the Arab world, which she had been advised not to show for security reasons. In the interview she asked where in the Koran it says that suicide attacks make a person a martyr, a question that gave the subject great difficulties answering.

“When Canada nearly had its own Sept. 11 last year, when 17 terrorists were arrested in Toronto, the police did not mention that it had anything to do with Islam or Muslims, not a word. We must get the religious side of this story out,” Manji said, and claimed that religious terrorism will likely only increase in the Western world.

“Jihad is an increasing phenomenon also in the West. I get more death threats from Western Europe than from the Arab world. Many of them in fact are from Scandinavia and Norway,” Manji said.

by Aftenposten’s Norwegian reporter
Kaja Korsvold and Aftenposten English Web Desk
Jonathan Tisdal

Lifted and published by African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525 source.aftenpostenEng

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Norway: Man arrested in Oslo on rape charges

Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

A 30-year-old man from Somalia was arrested on Thursday night in connection with a violent rape in the Grnerlkka district of downtown Oslo last Friday.
Technicians at work looking for evidence at the crime scene.

“The man was filmed by a video camera at a 7-11 store. We have circulated pictures of the man internally among police, and close cooperation between departments and police stations allowed us to arrest the man,” police captain Anne Rynning Aasen told Aftenposten.no.

The man, who has been charged with rape, has a prior criminal record. The arrest took place quietly in the Grnland district of downtown Oslo, just after 9 p.m. Thursday night.

Police said that they would check the suspect against a series of attack rapes and attempted rapes in the central Oslo area.

“My client will decide whether he acknowledges guilt at the remand hearing tomorrow. I have no other comment,” the man’s lawyer, Hilde Marie Ims, told Aftenposten.no.

The rape in question was extremely brutal. A 48-year-old woman was first raped and beaten in an Oslo street and was attacked again later after she encountered him on her way away from the crime scene.

By Amund Trellevik and Jonathan Tisdall

Lifted and Published by African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525 source.aftenpostenEng

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International Conference on Wreck Removal: 14-18 May 2007 in Nairobi

Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

New international treaty on wreck removal set for adoption

A new international convention, which will set out the legal responsibilities under which States can remove hazardous shipwrecks, is expected to be adopted at the end of a five-day Diplomatic Conference to be held from 14 to 18 May 2007 at the United Nations Office in Nairobi (UNON), Kenya.

The meeting will take place under the auspices of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), the United Nations specialized agency with responsibility for safety and security at sea and prevention of marine pollution from ships, and is being organized with the support of the Government of Kenya and UNON.

The Conference, which will be the first such event that IMO has held in Africa, will be opened by the President of the Republic of Kenya, His Excellency the Honourable Mwai Kibaki.

IMO Secretary-General Mr. Efthimios E. Mitropoulos said that “once adopted and in force, the prospective wreck removal convention will fill a gap in international law, by providing a sound legal basis for States to remove, or have removed, from their exclusive economic zones (EEZs), wrecks that may pose a hazard to navigation or, because of the nature of their cargo, to the marine and coastal environments, or to both”.

The new convention will make shipowners financially liable and require them to take out insurance or provide other financial security to cover the costs of wreck removal. It will also provide States with a right of direct action against insurers. The Diplomatic Conference is expected to consider a clause that would enable States Parties voluntarily to extend the convention’s scope to their territorial seas.

“The adoption of a new instrument with environmental connotations will be especially pertinent this year, when, as the theme for World Maritime Day, we are focussing on ‘IMO’s response to current environmental challenges’. As part of our action plan in relation to this theme, IMO will be promoting its excellent environmental record, along with the development of new standards to address all possible sources of marine and atmospheric pollution from shipping operations. In this context, therefore, the new convention will, certainly, be seen as yet another important milestone in IMO’s efforts to address society’s concerns regarding our fragile marine environment,” Mr. Mitropoulos said.

Articles in the draft convention cover:

§ reporting and locating ships and wrecks – covering the reporting of casualties to the nearest coastal State; warnings to mariners and coastal States about the wreck; and action by the coastal State to locate the ship or wreck;

§ determination of hazard – which sets out who is responsible for determining whether a hazard exists when the wreck or ship is beyond territorial waters, based on a list of specific criteria, including depth of water above the wreck and proximity of shipping routes;

§ rights and obligations to remove hazardous ships and wrecks – which sets out when the shipowner is responsible for removing the wreck and when a State may intervene;

§ financial liability for locating, marking and removing ships and wrecks – the registered shipowner is required to maintain insurance or other financial security to cover liability under the convention;

§ financial security – which deals with the security required to cover liabilities regarding claims for compensation under the convention; and

§ settlement of disputes.

The text of the draft convention on the removal of wrecks was approved by IMO’s Legal Committee at its 92nd session in October 2006.

_____________

IMO – the International Maritime Organization – is the United Nations specialized agency with responsibility for the safety and security of shipping and the prevention of marine pollution by ships.

Web site: http://www.imo.org

World Maritime Day 2007

The theme for World Maritime Day 2007 is “IMO’s response to current environmental challenges”.
The theme was chosen to give IMO the opportunity to focus on its environmental work (both of the past and present) and thus intensify its efforts to add our contribution to that of the international community to protect and preserve the environment before it is too late.
World Maritime Day will be celebrated on Thursday, 27 September 2007.

For further information please contact:
Lee Adamson, Head, Public Information Services on 020 7587 3153 (media@imo.org) or
Natasha Brown, External Relations Officer on 020 7587 3274 (media@imo.org).

Published by Korir, African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525

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“Liberians are irrational people

Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

A message to Liberians in Sweden

My Brothers and Sisters,

It has been about nearly three weeks ago and I just couldn´t relax without sharing with you’ll my fellow compatriots the uneasiness and disappointment I feel about certain “Liberians” in this community. I feel a strong compulsion to address this little encounter. It has taken me immeasurable courage and thought to write this.

Just at the recently held Liberian social gathering held in Alby on 21 April, in Stockholm, Sweden, organized by some “irrational and less busy people (Liberians)”. I decided to talked to and encourage a fellow countryman about how we (the irrational and less busy people) Liberians are trying assiduously to have an organized and united Liberian Community in Sweden, and there are positions available to contest and by which means “you” can help bring the community together.

During my brief explanation and ideals of the Liberian Swedish Association (LSA) to this fellow, I was interrupted in the middle of my explanation by this brother who expletively said “My brother I don’t want to be bother with Liberian people?” I asked why, he replied “Liberians are irrational people and unserious”. Then I asked “are you referring to a specific individual?” He said “NO”. What’s frightening is how this brother could blanketly cast absurdities on an entire nation and its people. He continued by “look my brother, you see that Dujar woman, and the reason why I joined (Dujar) is because they are serious” and I said “that’s true” and I thought to myself how easy it is for people to bask in the success of others. Where is our Patriotism? He didn’t stop there but lambasted on how he at a point in time went to Liberia to assist the people and they still wanted to be bribed, and as well as delved into other peoples’ private life and the amount of debts they owe and nothing they can show for the many years of their stay in Sweden. If you’re genuinely concern about your fellow Liberian state of being i.e. social or economic malfeasance, I think it would be very appropriate and prudent to discuss it with the individual concern.

We all know that Dujar has made significant inroads inside Liberia. I (we) am quite grateful for the achievements Dujar have in Liberia, but how about uniting Liberians in Sweden and trying to bring them together? Is this a herculean task? My fellow Liberians, being a member of The Birthday Club, Dujar, Volunteers for Homeless International (VHI) or The Liberian Development Forum is a matter of choice but LSA is a moral and nationalistic obligation for all well meaning and intentioned Liberian. Liberian Swedish Association (LSA) does not solicit funds from the Swedish Government or other NGO’s. It’s the embodiment of ALL Liberians in Sweden.

We Liberians are so good at criticizing others for their well-meaning efforts for simple initiatives and undertakings that we dire venture into and lack the ´guts and stimuli´ to get initiate. How are we to help Liberia move forward under this period of transformation, after hundred years of practiced corruption and abuse of public offices? When are we going to cultivate the spirit to encourage others for the gestures and activities they get involve into to help bound this already divided, hatred harboring and “too proud” Liberian Community in Sweden.

Here is another scenario with another brother being caught with his pants down while gossiping in the back. Little did he know or noticed that I was standing right at the back when he saying..“They always letting this guy play (DJ) at parties…and he doesn’t have good music.” Why can’t you muster the positive energy in you and confront your Liberian brother and point out his shortcomings and encourage him to improve his choice of music? What seizes to amaze me is the fact that this same brother that was caught bad mouthing the D.J, was asked by me earlier during the morning hours if he wasn’t going to be a part of the conference scheduled earlier, he replied “I vehemently that I only came to drop my mother” Wouldn’t that be better than to stand in the corner surreptitiously and display our Liberian attitude to “destroy instead of building”? No one is against criticism, but “constructive criticism” is the common denominator for encouraging change in society or an individual.

It’s a common tendency for Liberians to quickly forget from whence they cometh. We are all Liberians irrespective of skin color, religious background, social status or a perm hair with a ponytail.

These are the same people that go around saying that Liberian are not serious minded and they can’t fathom why we’re not holding together as one people.

My fellow brother continued with his rampant and blanket insinuations “the Liberian people are not serious and in fact I went down there to help the people and they still want to be bribe and I don’t have patient to deal with foolish people”. Well, that’s true, I replied, but shouldn’t we be persistent in our endeavors in bringing about a definite and long lasting change in Liberia and unanimously set up a full front court press after decades of accepted corrupt practices?

Do you know how the Chairman of the TRC came to Sweden? If you don’t know, it’s through the efforts and contacts of the “Irrational Liberians” and people that have the”unflinching, unwavering and the patriotic adrenalin that push us forward to contribute to the reconciliation process in and out of Liberia.
My dear Liberian Brothers and Sisters, if you don’t have any meaningful contributions to make to this already divided and malice ridden Liberian community, I advise that it be prudent to simply don’t pursue negative devices such as utterances or gestures and don’t push the community to further division.

Patriotic yours

Francis Monnoh Mensah

Published by African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525

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THE COWARD…….

Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

Writer: APN Africa correspondent
Pauline Onyango

____
A man woke up early for work. In the office, he got a memo of a new management, their main competitors had completed a successful take-over bid.

At work, when he sat on his desk and logged on to network, suddenly a silence descended on the office. Looking up, he saw two men and a woman talking to his secretary. She pointed towards him as she said something, his heart leapt to his mouth.
.
They asked for the man’s password to his computer files, he was interviewed for sometime, He took a deep breath, organized his thoughts and then did his best to keep his job. Thanking him for his time, they said they would be in touch. His goose was cooked.

Then his phone rang.

“Hello?” it was his sister Mary on the other end. It’s Mum, Mary replied, she collapsed in her kitchen, we are at the hospital, the doctor said it is heart attack. Getting to his car, he took his phone out and found his wife’s message, he decided to read it while driving since he didn’t want to waste any time. It read;

“ I had hoped to speak to you in person but as usual you’re too busy for me. I didn’t want to do this face to face because I don’t want to argue with you.

Over the past couple of years our marriage has deteriorated. I’ve tried all I can to make things work. Sadly it wasn’t enough. You spend too much time at work and not enough with me, I’ve had it with you taking me for granted.

I am moving in with someone else to start a new life, I met him when you were on one of your busy trips. By the time you get home, I will have left the house. Please don’t try to find me, my lawyer will be in touch.”

The monologue continued but by then he had tuned out. His thoughts were erratic as he tried to absorb what he had just heard. A loud horn snapped him out of his daze. Distracted, he had drifted to the wrong side of the road. A van was headed directly for him. Reflexively, he swerved and stamped his foot on the brake. Unfortunately he over-steered and the brakes locked. The car spun out of control. In panic he tried desperately to right it but in vain. It came a sudden stop with a resounding thud.

The sounds of screaming brought him back to reality. His throbbing head lay against a spider-web crack on the window. Something dripped off his chin and he realized he was bleeding, he forced the door open and forced his way out. He could see a pregnant woman crying by the road side, this is when the reality came slowly but when it did, it was like a bullet to the brain, He gasped in horror when the truth hit him, he had killed a child. He had to go to police to make a statement.

It was mid afternoon when he found himself in the hospital. He was still shaken to his core but he tried to put on a strong face for Mary’s sake. Mary almost knocked him over when she rushed into his arms
“where have you been?” Mary asked when the flow of tears slowed down.
“Now’s not the time. How is she?”
“She’s in the intensive care unit. The doctor says the next few hours are critical.”

Close to dusk, the doctor came to tell them their mother was dead. Mary broke down once more. Still in the grip of the day’s shocks, he barely reacted. His numb silence was stark in contrast. He later went to Swan centre, a place he usually goes to think. He wasn’t sure what to do. The choices thought, had never been so straight forward: one step forward would mean an end to his miserable existence, one step backward would mean facing all that life had thrown his way . With a sigh he came to a decision.

Taking a breath, he took a step…….

Published by African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525

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Kenya: Insecurity in the country creates political instability

Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

By APN Africa correspondent
Pauline Onyango

In Kenya’s Daily Nation, there is always a written message by Mr. Watchman.
But,

– Who do you think this man is?
– Do you think he is a people’s watchman?
– Is he just brain-storming the society?

If he is a watchman, let him appear uniformed in public and rescue Kenyans from insecurity in the Country.

Published by African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no, tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525

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Another 36 Irrevocable Promissory Notes Tabled In Parliament

Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

By Mars Group

In a new development, on Wednesday 9th May 2007, Maoka Maore, MP for Ntonyiri, tabled 36 irrevocable promissory notes issued by the Finance Ministry in early 2003 ostensibly to guarantee repayments for a loan by Midland Finance & Securities Limited of Euro 49,650,000 to pay for a digital multi-channel security systems telecommunications network for the Administration Police. The irrevocable promissory notes were backed by a legal opinion by the Attorney General dated June 17th 2003, which Maore also tabled. This development gives the lie to the statements of Minister of Finance, Amos Kimunya, who on 2nd May 2007 told Parliament the following on the Telecommunication Network for Administration Police project:
“This project has never started and it is still the subject of protracted issues. No promissory notes were issued against this project and there is no refund, because no payments were made in respect of this.”
This is definitely untrue.
Following today’s debate the Minister for Finance also finds himself in trouble as doubts are raised as to the truthfulness of his remarks on the project for Modernisation of Police Equipment and Accessories (number 17 of the Controller & Auditor General/External Debt Table), when he said:
“This project was also cancelled. No payment was issued therefore there was no refund.”
Again this is not true. There were at least 21 promissory notes issued on this contract to the order of Sound Day Corporation.
1. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/001
2. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/002
3. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/003
4. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/004
5. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/005
6. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/006
7. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/007
8. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/008
9. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/009
10. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/010
11. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/011
12. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/012
13. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/013
14. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/014
15. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/015
16. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/016
17. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/017
18. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/018
19. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/019
20. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/020
21. GOK/OP/SDC/2004/021
The Irrevocable Promissory Notes are supported by a legal opinion dated January 7th 2004 from the Attorney General, Amos Wako, who states that “each Promissory Note is valid, binding and enforceable.”
The Minister for Finance refused to table any evidence to the contrary, and maintains that the matters are under investigation.

Posted by Karuga wa Njuguna – UK
Published by African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525

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What makes you an African?

Posted by African Press International on May 13, 2007

1. You unwrap all your gifts carefully, so that you can re-use the wrapper.

2. You call a person you’ve never met before uncle or aunty.

3. More than 90% of the music CD’s and cassettes in your home are illegal copies or nicked from friends/family.

4. Your garage is always full of stuff because you never throw anything away, just in case you need it someday.(A gum boot without a partner and the baby walker – baby’s now 12 and you are 48).

5. You have a collection of miniature shampoo bottle from your stays at hotels. (Gocool, Sweet heart, African pride….)

6. You always carry overweight baggage when travelling by plane.

7. If a store has a limit on the quantity of a product, then each member of the family will join separate queues to purchase the maximam quantity possible. (Sugar,soap,rice,cooking oil).

8. All children have nicknames and grow up not recognising their first names.

9. Nobody in your family informs you that they are coming to visit – and they stay for a month!

10. You stuff your pockets with, mints and toothpicks at restaurants and a glass from the pub/bar.

11. Your mother,brother,sister has a minor disagreement with a member of the family and does not talk to him/her forever.

12. You only make telephone calls at a cheaper rate at night and stay on the phone for at least an hour!

13. You never have less than 20 people to meet you at the airport or see you off even if it is a local flight.

14. You keep changing your Internet Service Provide because the first month is free. (I know some people O!…..)

15. Office supplies mysteriously find their way to your home. (Yes,staple machine, office pins, punch machine, cellotapes, post-its,etc.)

16. Your parents buy/bought you clothes and shoes at least two sizes too big so that they would last longer. Note: Pass this on to otherAfricans, so they can know what makes them truly African.

We learn wisdom from failure much more than from success. We often discover what will do, by finding out what will not do; and probably he who never made a mistake never made a discovery

Posted by Karuga wa Njuguna
Published by African Press in Norway, apn, africanpress@chello.no tel +47 932 99 739 or +47 6300 2525

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