Our Oil Discovery, Our Hope

first_imgThree decades and three years ago, Liberians demonstrated an intolerable behavior against the tampering with our stable food rice. It was an act which served as a caveat that Liberians, at any moment, are willing and ready to stand on their feet against whatever forces that tend to reduce the size of their stomach.Today, there is a mental shift from what pleases and satisfies our bellies to what benefits our economy and improves our lives. Interestingly, that is non-edible oil, crude oil. Our crude oil discovery has sparked hot debates among Liberians both in and out of Liberia. Liberians from all walks of life have been seen on street corners, in attayah shops, on university campuses  and even in churches expressing their views on how the oil revenues should be managed and/or allocated to benefit the general populace. The question that has been frequently asked is, “Is our oil discovery a blessing or a curse?” This question arises from ugly situations that have been witnessed in other African countries including Nigeria, North and South Sudan, D.R. Congo, among others, in which there were bloodshed, and destruction of infrastructures and institutions after oil wasdiscovered in those countries.In an attempt to take a  cue from those countries’ experiences, Liberians tend to be vigilant and proactive so that our fragile and enjoyable peace will not degenerate into decadence simply because of misappropriation and mismanagement of oil revenues. Sometime in October and November 2013, the Liberian Legislature led a nationwide consultative and awareness campaign in all counties to solicit the candid views of ordinary Liberians with regards to the new petroleum laws; a process which was greeted with mixed  reactions.While some Liberians welcomed  and commended the process; others rejected and scorned the process as ridiculous, based on the contention that they weren’t given copies of the new petroleum law to read and digest. Many  opined that the process was a waste of tax payers’ money. It was unofficially reported on local media that US$1.2 million was given to the Legislature for the process. This amount most Liberians considered as too much for a consultation process when in fact many Liberians are wallowing far below the economic ladder in destitution.However, our law makers returned from their trip around the country announcing success in their excursion. While it is necessary to consider seriously the proper management of our oil revenues, it is also very germane to invest more in the success of the discovery process. I mean investment in the human resource capacity; the training and placement of brilliant, talented and young Liberians.The recent discovery of crude oil by African Petroleum in our off-shore basin is a laudable achevement. As reported to the general public, the discovery was within the Albian and Turonian strata. Our basin, which is located within the Gulf of Guinea,  provides a reasonable consideration for possible commercial volume of oil reserves. After a thorough research study in the area, it is now believed that the Gulf of Guinea contains about three to four billion barrels of crude oil.However, the onus is upon our stake holders to put into place a proper modus operandi or mechanism that will ensure that our oil discovery is a success.According to resource classification, our resources are at present considered prospective resources. Prospective resources are those quantities of petroleum which are estimated as of a given date to be potentially recoverable from undiscovered accumulations. The progression is from prospective resources to contingent resources to Reserves. Each stage requires the expertise of qualified petroleum engineers (reservoir and drilling engineers), petro-physicists, geologists and  petroleum geochemists, among others. Additionally, the utilization of modern sophisticated technologies and software are required. The process might take five to ten years to develop a production well if our oil is of commercial quantity, and there is political stability.Even though the resources within the earth subsurface are yet to be quantified, Liberians have started to raise eyebrows with  regards to the exorbitant expenditure of our oil revenue on nationwide consultation. The Liberians’ hope is that the revenues generated from our crude oil will be used to better the lives of ordinary Liberians and improve the economy.This shared hope has been reflected in our struggle for balanced participation, justice, and equal opportunities, among others. This struggle,  which has been described in our history as the ugly past, saw hideous crimes being perpetrated by Liberians on their fellow countrymen. This led to the massive destruction of lives, properties and institutions. A bitter resentment and lack of trust have developed in the hearts of many Liberians simply because of the cruel and uncivilized behavior demonstrated toward one another.However, after ten years of relative peace, Liberians have seen a prospect for better living and the hope to enjoy their family union and community   cooperation. National leaders are now obliged to provide the enabling environment where all Liberians can realize their potential and contribute to rebuilding of Mama Liberia.ABOUT THE AUTHOR:M. Dokie Mulbah is a summa cum laude Natural Science and Mathematicsgraduate of Cuttington University, who recently returned from the People’s Republic of China with the Master’s degree in Petroleum Engineering.  He is currently in conversation with the National Oil Company, including its President, Dr. Randolph McClain, toward engagement to contribute Dokie’s quota to the just and efficient development and exploitation of Liberia’s petroleum resource.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Negotiations still stalled between government and BCTF

first_imgCameron hasn’t flat out rejected the idea, but he says there’s nothing scheduled at this point and there’s very little incentive to do so in his view.“They’re open to meet, but as we said to the union, let’s get within some kind of affordability zone so we can actually get somewhere when we sit down,” Cameron said. “No point with the present position of the union, us going in and sitting across the table looking at each other. We’ve already done a lot of that.”Cameron says he prefers to consider wages and benefits as a single issue, and also claims there’s still a significant gap between the latest positions of the two sides.- Advertisement -Teachers’ Union President, Jim Iker says the wage difference is down to 1 per cent, but Cameron says the BCTF demand for $225,000,000 in new benefits is off the charts.The school year was shortened by nearly 2 weeks when the BCTF replaced rotating strike action with a province wide walkout, which has remained ongoing since June 17th.last_img read more

stop! think before you press `send’

first_imgPerhaps you think it’s not permanent. Wrong. Perhaps you think it can’t be used in court. Wrong. Perhaps you think it can’t get you into trouble. Perhaps you think your e-mail at work is private. Wrong. Very, very wrong. “E-mail is forever,” said Richard Cellini, an attorney and vice president of Integrity Interactive, a Waltham, Mass.-based company that provides Web-based training to large organizations in areas of legal compliance, ethics and corporate responsibility. “There’s no way to pull it back, no way to delete it . ? E-mails are absolutely discoverable in legal investigations. They are considered the same as a document. E-mails are routinely turned over in court cases.” If you’re curious, Cellini pointed out, you can read a huge quantity of Enron’s e-mail on the Internet, thanks to the court cases that accompanied that company’s demise. Cellini said the use and misuse of e-mail is the second most popular training topic among Integrity Interactive’s 350 corporate clients, trailing only financial integrity. Very large companies might fire 200 to 400 workers a year because of e-mail, Cellini said. (That might seem like a lot, he said, but not for a corporation that employs 50,000 or even 100,000 people.) He described one large and respected U.S. company that discovered an odd, macho subculture in which employees were e-mailing gruesomely violent videos to each other. Feeling that the corporate culture was being “hijacked,” Cellini said, senior management spent a weekend going over employee e-mails and fired several hundred people. The first mistake most people make, Cellini said, is sending too many e-mails in the first place. “A colleague just sent me an e-mail, and he works two doors away,” he said in the middle of a phone interview last week. “There’s way too much e-mail, and people CC their e-mail (send copies) to too many people.” (Cellini said studies have shown that mid-level managers CC more people than either the top executives above them or the lower-level employees beneath them.) The next big mistake is using inflammatory or exaggerated language to draw attention to a situation. A third common error is failing to note the difference between facts and opinions. Then there are the six big topics to avoid: race, gender, religion, sexuality, opinions about legality, and any hint of price fixing with competitors. Avoid these six booby traps, he said, and 95 percent of e-mail problems could be avoided. Euphemisms are not going to let you wriggle out of harm’s way, he said. “Juries aren’t stupid. ? It’s not the words themselves that can cause trouble, it’s the tone and the meaning. It’s intent that causes problems, and human beings are very good at gauging intent.” As long as an e-mail is written on company property, or on company equipment, Cellini said, there is no such thing as a private e-mail. As a practical matter, he added, most companies allow minor personal use of e-mail, perhaps to set up lunch or arrange for a baby-sitter. But even innocuous personal use of e-mail is a privilege, not a right. Cellini said problems with e-mail seem to be growing worse, as its usage becomes more pervasive. At one time, he said, some companies tried technical solutions to the situation, such as using word filters to police corporate e-mail. But that didn’t work very well, Cellini said, often targeting legitimate e-mails while failing to catch the problems. So companies have devoted more time and energy to educating their employees about the proper and improper use of e-mail.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more


first_imgINVESTIGATION: Serious concerns have been expressed over safety at An Grianan Theatre in Letterkenny.A leak in the roof, which was first noticed a year ago, has spread water to other parts of the building.One of the dressing rooms at the theatre cannot be used and only last week, administrative staff had to move to a different location. There are now fears that electrical equipment is now posing a danger to performers and members of the public.Now a former committee member has expressed fears that the building could be closed by the Health and Safety Authority if the damage is not addressed.Paddy O’Connor, who helped raised more than €300,000 for the theatre which opened in 1999, told Donegal Daily the matter is one of the utmost urgency.“The concern now is that the building is fast becoming unfit for purpose and that unless addressed as a matter of urgency, the rain damage may spread to the auditorium where there is hugely expensive electrical and electronic equipment at risk. “The fear is that the Health and Safety Authority would move in and deem the building unsafe.“This has been going on for a year now and we need to address it as matter of urgency before it becomes to late,” he saidA source at An Grianan Theatre confirmed there was a serious issue which needed to be addressed.“We are not in a position to be seen to be giving out and complaining but something needs to be done.“We have an amazing facility here but we need to protect it and money needs to be spend on these renovations,” said the source. ********Donegaldaily.com – Donegal’s No1 News & Sports Website – more than 30,000 Visitors Every DayFollow the leader on:https://twitter.com/DonegalDaily SERIOUS ISSUES RAISED OVER SAFETY AT AN GRIANAN THEATRE was last modified: February 18th, 2013 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:An Grianan Theatresafety issueslast_img read more

Council revokes club’s permit

first_imgWHITTIER — Saying that there would be no more second chances, the City Council early Wednesday morning voted unanimously to revoke the conditional use permit for Rome Fine Dining, formerly known as Ibiza Steak and Lounge in Uptown. Wednesday’s action, however, will allow the restaurant/nightclub to remain in business and offer entertainment. But the establishment will not be allowed to sell alcohol. Council members said Rome Fine Dining violated the conditions of a permit granted on Jan. 25, giving them no choice but to revoke it. “At the end of the day, Mr. (Ralph) Verdugo and (Dennis) Davis created this mess,” said Councilman Doug Lopez, referring to the co-owners. “They are responsible. We gave you six months, which to me seems very liberal. There is substantial evidence that Ibiza has operated in disregard for the health and safety of the neighborhood.” AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week During the nearly five-hour hearing that stretched past midnight, police officers and city staffers testified that Rome Fine Dining failed to provide Whittier with security and transportation plans as required, used a potentially unsafe elevated platform without first getting approval from the Building Department, and failed to notify the city in advance of special events. In addition, following an April 17 shooting across the street from the establishment, Rome Fine Dining did not supply a surveillance tape that could have helped solve the crime, officers testified. Verdugo said he had, in fact, provided security and transportation plans to the city. He said he does not allow patrons to go near the platform in question. And the surveillance tapes requested by police were not supplied because of the taping system had broken, he added. The revocation action will not become official until the council’s Oct. 25 meeting, when council members will consider a resolution revoking the permit. The state Department of Alcoholic Beverages Control would enforce the ban on alcohol sales, city officials said. If the council does not change its mind, the battle between the city and Rome Fine Dining most likely will continue in the courts, since the owners already have filed a challenge against the permit the city issued on Jan. 25. A hearing on that matter is scheduled Oct. 26 in Los Angeles Superior Court. Depending on the ruling, Wednesday’s action could become part of the case, be rendered meaningless or left in force, Whittier City Attorney Dick Jones said. Roger Diamond, attorney for Rome Fine Dining, said Wednesday that his client would fight the city’s action. “We’re saying the conditions are onerous, one of which makes him pay for two city police officers,” Diamond said. “(Verdugo) takes the position he did comply and if he didn’t, we’re challenging those conditions.” Davis said that the city blames Rome Fine Dining for all of the problems in the Uptown area. “If something runs a red light, it’s Ibiza’s fault,” he said. “You need to look at the entire Uptown community. It’s unfair to tag everything that occurs in the area as Ibiza’s fault.” Ibiza Steak and Lounge took over the former Bank of America building at the southeast corner of Philadelphia Street and Greenleaf Avenue in 2000. Since then, there have been complaints of noise and disturbances. In April 2004, Ibiza and Verdugo were convicted of misdemeanor charges related to a male G-string review the club hosted the previous year. A month later, two women exotic dancers were observed dancing at a private party downstairs, according to a Whittier police report. The club had no permit for exotic dancers. In response to the convictions, the City Council considered revoking the club’s business license but instead decided to enforce about 60 restrictions noted in the club’s business permit. The new conditions imposed in January reduced the hours the club could serve liquor, demanded that the club notify the city before any major acts performed, and required that all potential club managers go through a background check by the city before they were hired, among other things. Jeff Collier, director of community development, said the situation has not improved since January. “It’s not one thing,” Collier said. “It’s the volume of issues. You look at the strain on our police service, impact and threat to public safety and impact on the business community.” — Mike Sprague can be reached at (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3022, or by e-mail at mike.sprague@sgvn.com.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more