The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has joined world leaders and Goodwill Ambassadors in a global call to rescue the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and get back on track to building a better world that “leaves no one behind”.
The 2022 SDG Moment, which places an annual spotlight on the 17 Global Goals agreed by countries in December 2015, took place on Monday in New York. “The world has a long ‘to do’ list”, Guterres told world leaders, asking for more finance and investment from the public and private sectors, to meet growing needs.
Acknowledging the current “moment of great peril” for our world – characterised by conflicts, climate catastrophe, division, unemployment, massive displacement and other challenges, Guterres said that although “it was tempting” to put long-term priorities to the side, development could not wait.
“The education of our children cannot wait.
Dignified jobs cannot wait.
Full equality for women and girls cannot wait.
“Comprehensive healthcare, meaningful climate action, biodiversity protection – these cannot be left for tomorrow,” he underscored, highlighting that across all these areas, young people and future generations are demanding action.
“We cannot let them down.
This is a definitive moment… The perils we face are no match for a world united…Let’s get our world back on track”, the UN chief urged world leaders.
Similarly, the President of the General Assembly, Csaba Kőrösi, echoed.
Guterres’s words, and said that it was timely and more necessary than ever to “re-dedicate ourselves to the SDGs” as the world falls behind.
“The pandemic was a postcard from the future, a bleak future of interlocking global crises.
One that we want to avoid and that we can avoid.
We must now regain the speed lost to the pandemic and to our inaction.
Solutions are at hand,” he said.
Kőrösi added that it is time to “get serious” about saving the world, with all pleasant and unpleasant consequences that this entails, and asked UN Member States to deliver on promises made.
Holding a placard of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals at the podium, Prime Minister of Barbados and UN Environment Champion of the Earth, Mia Motley, reminded the General Assembly what each of the SDGs meant, from ending poverty and achieving gender equality, to protecting our planet.
“A world that is driven by a climate crisis cannot provide a sustainable future for us.
Are we so arrogant to believe that there will be no failed societies and no extinct species, as history shows us otherwise?
,” she asked world leaders.
She urged the children of the world to “lead a revolution” in changing our habits to end plastic pollution and waste, and “hold the leaders’ feet to the fire” to make the world a better place to live in.
Poet, activist and UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) supporter, Amanda Gorman, shared one of her inspiring pieces focused on leaders’ accountability, ending poverty and protecting the Earth.
Meanwhile, SDG Advocates and K-pop superstars BLACKPINK, appeared in a video message inviting the world to take specific actions to tackle climate change and boost sustainable development.
The accession of King Charles to the British throne has stirred renewed calls from politicians and activists for former colonies in the Caribbean to remove the monarch as their head of state and for Britain to pay slavery reparations.
Charles succeeds his mother, Queen Elizabeth, who ruled for 70 years and died on Thursday afternoon.
The prime minister of Jamaica said his country would mourn Elizabeth, and his counterpart in Antigua and Barbuda ordered flags to half-staff until the day of her burial.
But in some quarters there are doubts about the role a distant monarch should play in the 21st century.
Earlier this year, some Commonwealth leaders expressed unease at a summit in Kigali, Rwanda, about the passage of leadership of the 56-nation club from Elizabeth to Charles.
And an eight-day tour in March by now heir-to-the-throne Prince William and his wife, Kate, to Belize, Jamaica, and the Bahamas was marked by calls for reparation payments and an apology for slavery.
“As the role of the monarchy changes, we expect this can be an opportunity to advance discussions of reparations for our region,” Niambi Hall-Campbell, a 44-year-old academic who chairs the Bahamas National Reparations Committee, said Thursday.
Hall-Campbell sent condolences to the Queen’s family and noted Charles’ acknowledgment of the “appalling atrocity of slavery” at a ceremony last year marking the end of British rule as Barbados became a republic.
She said she hopes Charles would lead in a way reflecting the “justice required of the times.
And that justice is reparatory justice.
” More than 10 million Africans were shackled into the Atlantic slave trade by European nations between the 15th and 19th centuries.
Those who survived the brutal voyage were forced to labor on plantations in the Caribbean and the Americas.
Jamaican reparations advocate Rosalea Hamilton said Charles’ comments at the Kigali conference about his personal sorrow over slavery offered “some degree of hope that he will learn from the history, understand the painful impact that many nations have endured ’til today” and address the need for reparations.
The new king did not mention reparations in the Kigali speech.
The Advocates Network, which Hamilton coordinates, published an open letter calling for “apologies and reparations” during William and Kate’s visit.
The Queen’s grandchildren have the chance to lead the reparations conversation, Hamilton added.
Jamaica’s government last year announced plans to ask Britain for compensation for forcibly transporting an estimated 600,000 Africans to work on sugar cane and banana plantations that created fortunes for British slave holders.
“Whoever will take over the position should be asked to allow the royal family to pay African people reparations,” said David Denny, general secretary of the Caribbean Movement for Peace and Integration, from Barbados.
“We should all work towards removing the royal family as head of state of our nations,” he said.
Jamaica has signaled it may soon follow Barbados in ditching royal rule.
Both remain members of the Commonwealth.
An August survey showed 56 per cent of Jamaicans favor removing the British monarch as the head of state.
Mikael Phillips, an opposition member of Jamaica’s parliament, in 2020 filed a motion backing the removal.
“I am hoping as the prime minister had said in one of his expressions, that he would move faster when there is a new monarch in place,” Phillips said on Thursday.
Allen Chastanet, a former St. Lucia prime minister and now leader of the opposition, told Reuters he backed what he said was a “general” movement toward republicanism in his country.
“I certainly at this point would support becoming a republic,” he said.
Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia on Wednesday said he would immediately release N30 million to Ukwa West Local Government Area for Asa Electricity Project he earlier promised.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that this was contained in a statement signed by the governor’s Chief Press Secretary, Onyebuchi Ememanka, issued in Aba.The governor disclosed this during a meeting with leaders of Ukwa West LGA who paid him a solidarity visit in AbaIkpeazu said the money would hit their bank account immediately the meeting ended on Wednesday.
He challenged them to ensure the project’s delivery before the end of September, to ensure Ukwa West LGA residents have their own dedicated source of electricity.
Ikpeazu also announced that he had released funds to the contractor handling the Uratta – Umuozuo – Umuekechi – Obokwe – Ugwati road.
The governor told them that the first phase of the project, which covered Uratta to Umuekechi, had been completed.
He said the second phase of the project from Umuekechi to Ugwati would commence from Aug. 22, promising that the work would not stop until completion.
He, therefore, tasked the people of the area to own the project and cooperate with the contractor.
Ikpeazu also assured the LGA that government would soon announce the appointment of its indigene as the substantive Chairman of Abia State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (ASOPADEC).
He told the delegation that he delayed the appointment to ensure that all issues surrounding the matter were properly addressed before the announcement.
He reiterated that Asa sons and daughters must be the only ones to be appointed Chairman of ASOPADEC and tasked them to support whoever is eventually appointed.
Ikpeazu told them that Enyimba Economic City Project remained the most audacious economic development project in the entire South East of Nigeria.
He said that Afrexim Bank had invested $150 million into the project while the Federal Government handed the management of its 20 per cent equity holding in the project through the Sovereign Wealth Fund. The governor said another crucial meeting on the project would hold in Barbados soon where he would require an indigene of Ukwa West to accompany him.
He urged the leaders and people of Ukwa West to remain steadfast in their support for the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and vote for the it in 2023 elections.
The leader of the delegation, Chief Don Ubani, told the governor that the people of Ukwa West LGA were fully behind the PDP in the 2023 elections.
He thanked Ikpeazu for the release of the funds for the Asa Electricity Project and assured him that the funds would be judiciously used for quick completion of the project.
He told the governor that Asa people had adopted him as their sole candidate for the Senatorial seat in 2023.He also said a motion for that was moved by the member representing Ukwa West State Constituency at the State Assembly, Mr Goddy Adiele.
Those present at the meeting were the Executive Chairman of Ukwa West LGA, Chief Okey Kanu, Commissioner for Environment, Mr Sam Nwogu, and Mr Chinedum Elechi.
Others who were part of the delegation includes Mr Ralph Egbu, Mr Tony Mezie – Nwaubani and Mr Henry Chilaka.
African participants in the first-ever AfriCaribbean Trade and Investment Forum (ACTIF2022) taking place in Bridgetown, Barbados, from Sept. 1 to Sept 3, 2022, would enjoy visa waiver requirements for passport holders from 24 African countries.
The development was contained in a statement signed by Deborah Ross, Senior Public Relations Director, BrandComms, on Thursday.
According to the statement, the benefitting countries would have otherwise needed visas to enter Barbados.
It said that citizens of the remaining African countries do not require visas to travel to Barbados.
It added that citizens of the 24 countries who register to participate in ACTIF2022, would be eligible for the visa waiver programme which allows covered visitors to enter Barbados without visas and to stay for up to 90 days.
“ACTIF2022, which is being held under the theme “One People, One Destiny: Uniting and Reimagining Our Future”, is being hosted by the Government of Barbados and the African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank).
“The 24 African countries to which the visa waiver decision applies are: Algeria, Angola, Benin, Cape Verde, Central Africa Republic, Chad, Comoros, Republic of Congo, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Côte d’Ivoire, Djibouti.
“Others are Egypt, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Madagascar, Mozambique, Namibia, Niger, Sao Tomé and Principe, Sudan, South Sudan and Togo,” it said.
The statement quoted Kay Sealy, acting Permanent Secretary, Barbadian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Foreign Trade, who said that the move to add these countries to Barbados’ visa waiver list was to enhance business and investment opportunities.
She added that the visa waiver, also being extended to 19 non-African countries would facilitate the ease of travel for tourists.
“Participants in ACTIF2022 will include African and Caribbean heads of state and government, senior government representatives, business leaders, representatives of business associations, development agencies, multilateral finance institutions, think-tanks and research institutions from Africa and the Caribbean.
“ACTIF2022 is being held in collaboration with the African Union Commission, the African Continental Free Trade Area Secretariat, the Africa Business Council, the CARICOM Secretariat, and the Caribbean Export Development Agency.
“It is co-managed by Invest Barbados and Export Barbados,” she said.
Following the recommendations of the Court of Appeal for the appointment of three special judges of appeal to hear the case of EEEL against Vijay Construction Pty Ltd, the President of the Republic of Seychelles, Mr. Wavel Ramkalawan, received the recommendations of the Appointments Authority Constitutional Courts (CAA) and has accordingly appointed Judge Winston Anderson as chairman of the panel and two other members, Judge Carl Singh and Judge William Young, to hear the case and make a final determination.
Justice Winston Anderson (Chairman of the ad-hoc appellate panel of judges) is a judge of the Caribbean Court of Justice ("CCJ"), which is the highest court on civil, constitutional and criminal appeals for four sovereign states: Barbados, Belize, Dominica and Guiana.
He has been a CCJ Judge for twelve (12) years and is now the third longest serving Judge on the Court.
Justice William Young has served on the High Court, the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court of New Zealand.
Sir William is an Honorary Fellow of the Middle Temple and an Honorary Fellow of Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge.
He has an honorary doctorate in law from the University of Canterbury.
Justice Carl Singh has served in the Supreme Court of Guyana, followed by Chief Justice of Guyana, and later in the Office of the Chancellor and Chief of the Guyana Judiciary.
He was also Professor and Head of the Department of Law at the University of Guyana.
Nigeria’s table tennis team at the ongoing Commonwealth Games in Birmingham on Friday had a bright start in both the men’s and women’s team events.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the women’s team of Offiong Edem, Fatima Bello and Esther Oribamise defeated their St. Vincent and the Grenadines counterparts 3-0.
In their Group One fixture’s doubles game, the pair of Edem and Bello defeated Velox and Cumberbatch 3-0 (11-6 11-2 11-5).
In one of the fixture’s singles game, Oribamise beat Delpesche 3-0 also, winning 11-2 11-3 11-2.
The other singles game saw Edem dispatchin Cumberbatch 11-1 11-2 11-3 for another 3-0 routing of their opponents.
Meanwhile, in another Group One fixture, Singapore beat England 3-0.
Group Two results show India beating South Africa 3-0, while Guyana also beat Fiji 3-0.
In Group Three, Australia beat Malaysia 3-0 while Mauritius beat Maldives 3-2.
Matches in Group Four of the event saw Canada beating Uganda 3-0, just as Wales spanked Vanuatu 3-0.
NAN reports that the Nigerian men team were also superlative as they whipped South Africa 3-0 in their Group Two fixture.
Ghana and Cyprus are their other group opponents.
In Group One of the event, England beat Guyana 3-0, while India beat Barbados 3-0 in Group Three action.
NAN reports that competition continues in the event later on Friday in round-robin fashion.
Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Hina Rabbani Khar led the Pakistani delegation at the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) held in Kigali, Rwanda on June 24-25, 2022. Themed ' Providing a Common Future: Connect, Innovate and Transform', the Summit discussed Commonwealth-related issues including post covid economic recovery, disruptions caused by the pandemic and conflict, the challenge of climate change and sustainable development, the promotion of democratic values and fundamental freedoms and the improvement of trade, among other issues.
As head of the Pakistani delegation, Minister of State Khar represented Pakistan at the CHOGM plenary, Retreat and Intergenerational Dialogue. He also actively participated in the Commonwealth Foreign Ministerial Meeting held on June 23, 2022 in the run-up to the Summit.
The Minister of State held productive bilateral meetings with the Deputy Prime Minister of Australia, as well as the Foreign Ministers of Kenya, Tanzania, Singapore, New Zealand, Sierra Leone, Jamaica and Dominica, and the UK Minister for South Asia, the Commonwealth and the UN.
On the sidelines, he interacted with, among others, Their Royal Highnesses the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall; President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada, and UN General Assembly President Abdulla Shahid.
At the Intergenerational Dialogue, Pakistan was featured as the Asian Commonwealth member representing the potential of youth, along with Canada, Barbados and Samoa from the Americas-Europe, Caribbean and Pacific, respectively. In a specially recorded video message broadcast on television, Prime Minister Muhammad Shehbaz Sharif announced the holding of the 10th Commonwealth Youth Ministerial Meeting in Islamabad in January 2023. The announcement was welcomed by Commonwealth Heads .
The Summit, which was convened after a break of almost four years, was one of the largest face-to-face meetings of Heads of Government since the pandemic. It provided a useful opportunity for Member States to take stock and set the organizational agenda for the next two years.
Prince Charles told Commonwealth leaders on Friday that the choice to become a republic or abandon the queen as head of state was "a matter for each member country to decide."Speaking at the opening of a Commonwealth summit in Rwanda, the heir to the British throne said the 54-member club, mainly former British colonies, would always be "a free association of independent and self-governing nations."The Prince of Wales represents Queen Elizabeth II as the leader of the Commonwealth in Rwanda at a time of renewed discussion about its purpose and profile in the modern world.Republican movements are taking root in several Commonwealth nations, with some seeking reparations for colonial-era injustices such as slavery.Charles acknowledged the underlying change, saying that the Commonwealth was a diverse and evolving family.“The Commonwealth contains countries that have had constitutional relations with my family, some that continue to do so and, increasingly, those that have not,” Charles told an audience of presidents and prime ministers.“I want to say clearly, as I have said before, that the constitutional arrangement of each member, as a republic or a monarchy, is purely a matter for each member country to decide."The benefit of long life brings me the experience that arrangements like these can change, calmly and without rancor."Queen Elizabeth has championed the Commonwealth since she took the throne in 1952, but in the decades since, some member states have cast aside the monarch as head of state.Republican movements in some of the 14 Commonwealth countries outside the UK, where the queen is head of state, are gaining momentum.Member state Barbados became the world's newest republic last year, and other Caribbean nations are pushing to follow suit.Another member, Australia, has also appointed a minister for the republic, a sign of constitutional change on the horizon.There have also been questions about the royal family's future role at the helm of a group that represents a third of humanity in rich and poor countries around the world.At its last meeting in 2018, the Commonwealth appointed Charles the Queen's successor as head of the organization, and delegates in Rwanda praised the royal family for their dedication to the cause.The Commonwealth has come under scrutiny for its relevance, but supporters say expanding membership from nations with no historical ties to Britain underscores its health.The two newest members are Mozambique and host Rwanda, with West African states Togo and Gabon expected to join the club at this summit.
The current application period closes June 30; The scheme aims to enhance the development of talent around the world and thus increase the competitiveness of national teams; The ultimate goal is to bridge the competitive gap and increase the number of national teams capable of playing at the highest level.
So far, more than one hundred FIFA member associations have applied to benefit from FIFA's Talent Development Program (TDS) as the current application period for this pioneering initiative draws to a close.
The TDS aims to help member associations reach their full potential by raising the standards of talent development around the world. The plan will focus on raising high performance standards, creating the best environments for young players to thrive and helping young talent transition to professional football.
The ultimate goal is to close the competitive gap and increase the number of national teams capable of playing at the highest level, part of FIFA President Gianni Infantino's Vision 2020-23 (https://fifa.fans/3zUuAUx).
The current application period ends on June 30, and so far 117 of FIFA's 211 member associations have applied, from former world champions Germany and Argentina to smaller members Guam and Barbados.
"TDS is a key way to have an impact on the technical development of football around the world," said FIFA technical director Steven Martens. "The goal of FIFA is, yes, to organize competitions, yes, to be a good governor of the game. But it is also to use knowledge to really improve football." [to have it] played by more people, but also played at a better level, because higher quality games, more competitive games, are interesting for football fans."
FIFA has assembled a team of youth development specialists from around the world, working alongside FIFA's Regional Technical Consultants (RTCs), to run the project and provide personalized advice to member associations entering the scheme.
Oceania RTC Tony Readings said it could change the face of football in a region where talent development faces a number of logistical challenges.
"I think TDS could actually be a game changer for our region in a lot of ways in terms of supporting competitions, to be the best it can be, to have that aspirational impact in every country," he said. "Help put training programs together, build capacity for coaches to be at that advanced level; put programs in place to ensure players have the opportunity to realize their potential as well."
FIFA began by analyzing talent development around the world and producing detailed reports on the situation at 205 AM who were invited to apply to participate in the TDS.
Kelly Cross, a high performance specialist working in Asia, said it could provide the boost some Asian MAs need to reach the top tier.
“I think there is great potential in Asia, and there are countries that are already on the verge of that higher level, that could go all the way. I think there is tremendous potential in the countries that I have certainly experienced and looked at as part of this project,” she said.
The Thai FA was one of the first to apply to participate. “FIFA's analysis was like holding up a mirror,” said Joe Patit Suphaphongs, its Secretary General. “To see where we are right now, so we can see where we want to go. For every girl and boy who wants to play, we want to put in place a structure to give them the best chance to reach the best level they can,” he said.
FIFA has a unique perspective on the challenges facing youth development around the world and this enables it to help with knowledge sharing, which is one of the key pillars of the TDS alongside experience, training and education. . In recent weeks, TDS has brought together member associations from Europe, Africa and Oceania to exchange their views on supporting youth development and discuss shared challenges.
“An inspiring and stimulating scheme,” said Roberto Martínez, Technical Director of the Royal Belgian Football Federation and coach of its men's national team. "Incredible work that will bring clear benefits to all AMs individually and to football in general."
For more information on the talent development plan, please visit the FIFA Education Center: Introduction to the FIFA Talent Development Plan (https://bit.ly/3tMu6Mb).
Hotel entrepreneur Erwin Jager starts luxury helicopter rental business. Motivated to add value to luxury hotel destinations, he offers ultra-high comfort especially to wealthy travelers to improve transportation between the airport and the hotel complex in unique locations.
The idea came about because we often arrived at our hotel locations tired and stressed after hours of travel. A luxury chauffeur service offers some convenience over short distances, but certainly not if you have to travel more than 45 minutes between the airport and your final destination. At exclusive resort locations like Barbados, Maldives, Bora Bora, Mauritius, Seychelles, and the Bahamas, service is an absolute plus.
With the number of millionaires and billionaires in the world increasing, we hope to meet a growing demand among these target groups. Wealthy travelers like to be transported quickly in peace and discretion. A local chauffeur service does not cover that need.
We will start small with the deployment of 2 exclusive VIP Airbus Helicopters. Helicopters are used for wealthy travelers, but also for exclusive tourist flights and charter flights with local airlines. Ultimately, every helicopter has to work its hours to achieve healthy performance. The first helicopters will be deployed in January 2023 and will be fully financed through a long-term bond loan, said Chairman Erwin Jager of Barrows Hotel Enterprises.
The service offers exclusive hotel resorts a unique experience for their wealthy guests. The market is now favorable and there are wonderful devices available that provide the answer to the market demand. Ultimately we want to grow to 10 exclusive VIP Airbus helicopters by 2025.
The United Arab Emirates and West Africa are growing strongly, and in the coming decades, West Africa will develop more hotel complexes combined with new infrastructure, generating high occupancy from new and exciting visitors, jobs and new business opportunities.
Barrows Hotel Enterprises manages more than 10,000 hotel rooms internationally in more than 10 countries. Barrows specializes in the fast growing hospitality industry throughout the MENA region, including West Africa.