Tony Becca: A time to cherish, and to remember

first_img Those memorable events will live with me forever. Somehow, however, they pale in comparison to the wonderful performances in recent years, to the deeds of Usain Bolt and Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce over the past eight years, and definitely, they fail in comparison to the feeling of national pride I felt after the IAAF World Championships in Beijing recently. I am a Jamaican, born and bred, and the feeling that swept over me, the goose pimples that appeared on my skin, and the pounding of my heart was tremendous. Bolt was again the man, Fraser-Pryce was again the woman, Danielle Williams was brilliant in winning the women’s 100 metres hurdles, Elaine Thompson was brilliant in winning the silver in the 200 metres, and Novlene Williams-Mills was fantastic in unexpectedly leading home Christine Day, Shericka Jackson, and Stephenie-Ann McPherson in the women’s 4 x 400 metres relay. I was also pleased to see, for obvious reasons, Kenya’s Julius Yego winning the javelin, and Cuba’s Yarisley Silva winning the women’s pole vault, two of the events that were always considered out of their reach. Those two victories, along with performances in the sprints, probably more than anything else, demonstrated that the old order of things is changing, or has probably changed. When McKenley ran Lindy Remigino to a photo finish in Helsinki in 1952, the world was shocked. Everybody, however, should have known what was coming in the sprints. And they did come. Jamaicans were coming into their own, and despite such greats as Bob Haynes, Jim Hines, Tommie Smith, Carl Lewis, Hasley Crawford, Linford Christie, Donovan Bailey, Justin Gatlin, and Tyson Gay; Wilma Rudolph, Wyomia Tyus, Evelyn Ashwood, Florence Griffith-Joyner, Gail Devers, and Gwen Torrence; Carmelita Jeter, Sanya Richards, and Allyson Felix, came the Jamaicans. In London in 1948, Arthur Wint raced past the favourite, Herb McKenley, to win Jamaica’s first Olympic medal, the 400 metres gold medal; four years later, in Helsinki in 1952, George Rhoden held off the fast-finishing favourite McKenley to win the 400 metres; and also in Helsinki, McKenley, with a glorious run on the third leg, and Rhoden, with a truly memorable anchor leg, in a tight finish, led Wint and Les Laing to a fantastic victory in the 4 x 400m relay. Those were moments which, as a youngster, I can hardly remember, including the public holiday given by the Government in response to Jamaica’s world record run in the relay. What I remember about them was that Jamaica, a little dot on the map, a small island of little economic importance, a tiny island under British rule, flying England’s national flag, and singing their national anthem, had defeated much larger countries, namely the revered United States of America, and “mother country” England, and Canada, not to mention the real “mother countries” of Africa and India, and, of course, recently, China. I also remember Don Quarrie’s brilliance in winning the silver and the gold in the 100 and the 200 metres at the Montreal Olympic Games in 1976, and Deon Hemmings’ gold-medal run in the 400 metres hurdles in the Olympic Games in Atlanta in 1996. Brilliant performances They came in the form of athletes such as Keith Gardner, Mel and Mal Spence, Denis Johnson, Bert Cameron, Michael Fray, Raymond Stewart, Billy Miller, Donald Quarrie, Winthrop Graham, Gregory Haughton, James Beckford, and Danny McFarlane; Jacqueline Pusey, Lilieth Hodges, Rosie Allwood, Vilma Charlton, Una Morris, Carmen Smith, Merlene Ottey, Grace Jackson, Lorraine Fenton, Sandie Richards, Beverly McDonald, and Juliet Cuthbert. They were champions all – every single one of them. The best were yet to come, however, and they came over the last 10 years or so: Maurice Smith, Asafa Powell, Usain Bolt, Yohan Blake, Michael Frater, Warren Weir, Nesta Carter, Nickel Ashmeade, Hansle Parchment, Kemar Bailey-Cole, and a string of talented Jamaicans. Veronica Campbell-Brown, Fraser-Pryce, Kerron Stewart, Sherone Simpson, Aleen Bailey, Brigitte Foster-Hylton, Delloreen Ennis-London, Shericka Williams, Melaine Walker, Elaine Thompson, Williams-Mills, Natasha Morrison and many, many others. The world should have heard them coming; they were preceded by the sound of rolling thunder. In the time since then, Jamaicans have demonstrated their class and their pedigree. They have won almost every major sprint race since 2008; they have set a number of world records; they have finished one, two, two in the women’s100 metres at the Olympic Games; they have finished one-two in the men’s 100 at the Olympic Games; they have finished one, two, three at the same Olympic, and at the World Champion-ships, they have the glorious distinction of having four women in the 400 metres final, among many other wonderful performances. Those are enough to make a man blush with pride, especially a man from a country as small as Jamaica with such limited resources at that. Maybe I am too greedy, however, for all that failed to satisfy me as much as the picture of the final standing of the teams at the recent World Championships. The standing saw Jamaica – with seven gold medals, two silver medals – and three bronze medals – sitting pretty in second position, one behind Kenya, and one ahead of the USA. In medals won, Jamaica were in third position, behind The USA with 18 and Kenya. In terms of gold medals won, however, Jamaica stood on top of the standing, tied with Kenya and ahead of the much-vaunted United States of America. With America standing in the number-one position in the all-time list with an imposing 320 gold medals and a total of 767 medals at the Olympic Games, and Jamaica in 13th place with 18 gold medals for a total of 67 medals, it may not last long, or rather, it will not last long because things always change. Thanks a lot to administrator Herbert MacDonald; to the pioneers and pace-setters Wint, McKenley, Rhoden, Laing, and Cynthia Thompson; to coaches G. C. Foster and Ted Lamont; to the likes of Gardner and the Spence twins, who kept the pace going; to coaches Glen Mills, Stephen Francis, and company; to an administrator like Mike Fennell; and to Bolt and Powell, Campbell-Brown and Fraser-Pryce and company for taking Jamaica to dizzying heights. championslast_img read more

Secure Transaction Regime project to make accessing finance easier – Gaskin

first_imgWith aims to make access to finance easier in 2018, the Business Ministry in collaboration with the Legal Affairs Ministry is embarking on a Secure Transaction Regime project.According to Business Minister, Dominic Gaskin, the project will allow for easier access to financing, using movable property as collateral. He noted the ministries are still working on having the legislation passed sometime this year.Minister Gaskin explained, once the legislation is approved, persons will then be able to use movable properties such as fridges, televisions and stereo sets as collateral for credit when accessing finance.Business Minister Dominic Gaskin“What we are trying to do is make things easier for persons to borrow money and invest in businesses…it will take some time to transform an entire nation…but we will continue to work so that Guyana becomes a place where credit is easier for businesses to get,” the Minster is quoted by the Department of Public Information as saying.To this end, Minster Gaskin is encouraging persons and businesses to engage in more formal purchases when conducting transactions. He said formal documents, along with the moveable property, will be required when accessing finance.He said once the project starts, the ministry will roll out a sensitization campaign so persons across the regions can understand what the project provides and how they can benefit from it. He noted the Consumer Protection Department and the Consumer Affairs Commission will also engage in the public awareness campaigns.According to the Business Minister, the Secure Traction Regime project is one that builds on an earlier government initiative from 2016.He added that in 2016, the government amended the Credit Reporting Act to allow lending institutions to report to the Credit Bureau on transactions without seeking authorisation from customers. The amendment allowed the Credit Bureau to collect data from a number of credit providers, including banks and utility companies.The Secure Transaction Regime will see the establishment of a modern electronic registry for registering movable property; the training of staff; improved levels of security, better risk management, reduced traction cost, and time when conducting businesses.last_img read more

Berbice farmer stabbed to death during home invasion

first_imgA Corentyne, Berbice farmer was stabbed to death on Friday evening during a home invasion.Dead is Deoprakash Lallbachan called “William” of Lot 22, Grant 1655 Crabwood Creek, Berbice. Reports are the 59-year-old man was stabbed to his right and left side chest, and the abdomen. Guyana Times was told that the intruder entered the home via a window on the lower flat of the building at about 22:30h on Friday. To gain entry, the intruder removed two metal bars from the window. This publication was told that Lallbachan was watching television in the lower flat while his ailing mother-in-law was in a room next to him and his wife was upstairs.The farmer’s wife, Nalini Lallbachan told Guyana Times that Lallbachan shouted for her after the intruder pounced on him.The window through which the intruder gained entry“I hear he say ‘Nalini! Nalini! Come them bore me! Them bore me!’ I saw him hanging over the cupboard with blood running down. He said to me ‘They come out, they want to kill me’,” the wife recalled.The widow related that she placed her husband on the floor and rushed to close the backdoor.“I had closed it earlier, but I see it open,” she said, indicating that the intruder may have opened it to run out of the house. She said she started screaming for help but no one responded. She said that she then telephoned one of her husband’s friends who lives in the same village and he rushed over. They then took the injured Lallbachan to the Skeldon Hospital where he was pronounced dead on arrival.Dead: Deoprakash LallbachanWhile it is believed that the suspect is a kitchen thief, the grieving woman is of the opinion that it was not a robbery.“I can’t say but I think that if it was a robbery they would have gone upstairs because everywhere was opened,” Nalini contended.Police were called and upon arrival found that the suspect removed vegetables from a freezer that was outside and placed the items along with some biscuits just outside the back door. However, after the stabbing suspect escaped, leaving his loot as well as the murder weapon at the scene, the Police recovered a bloodied knife in the kitchen, a cutlass in the yard and a piece of clothing.There were footprints leading from the house to the back fence of the yard.Police are on the hunt for the suspect. The couple had been married for 37-years and has two children.last_img read more

Weekly MP Report from Jay Hill

first_imgAnd when Alexandre Bilodeau won his event, the pundits obsessed that “finally” we won our first Gold here at home in Canada. What does his success have to do with what did or did not happen in 1976 in Montreal or 1988 in Calgary?As for the endless stories on the weather, Mother Nature has been impacting Olympic Games since rowing was cancelled due to bad weather at the very first “modern” Olympics held in Athens in 1896!  Let’s please emphasize the ability of organizers to overcome these challenges and to allow the games to go on!Personally, one of the most rewarding moments of these Olympics so far was the Men’s 1000m speed skating final featuring our very own Fort St. John native, Denny Morrison.  To be in the stands at the fabulous Richmond Oval with thousands of other Canadians hollering and whistling Denny on is an experience I’ll not soon forget.Although Denny didn’t win, I’m sure he’d be one of the first to agree, that just to have qualified to be there, representing Canada … the greatest country on earth … was a victory in itself!  Go Canada Go. MP Report by Jay Hill, M.P.“Olympic Fever Hits Canada!”Canadians have been collectively experiencing a wide range of emotions throughout the past week since the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympic Games opened last Friday.  Anticipation, joy, amazement, surprise, disappointment and suspense, but most of all … pride.- Advertisement -Pride in our country as we host the world.  Pride in our athletes for their talent and dedication.Since experiences are so much better when shared, all across Canada families, friends and neighbours are gathering together to watch the best reality TV show ever produced!  In fact 23 million viewers tuned-in to CTV’s coverage of the opening ceremonies, or two out of three Canadians.And it was worth it!  If patriotism has a sound, it was what the world heard live on 11 television networks when Rick Hansen brought the Olympic Flame into B.C. Place Stadium where he was joined by four other Canadian sports legends, Catriona Le May Doan, Steve Nash, Nancy Greene Raine and Wayne Gretzky.The beaming, joyful and proud faces of those five deserving Canadians captured the first of many “Olympic Moments”.  More were quick to follow.Advertisement Jenn Heil won Canada’s first medal with a silver Saturday night in Moguls’ Skiing.  Then, on only the second day of competition, Alexandre Bilodeau won Canada’s first gold at these games in men’s moguls.  In just the first five days, Canadian athletes captured six medals!If I have one complaint surrounding these Olympics, it’s the extremes which some of our national news media have taken in criticizing every possible aspect of the games.Some might say it’s typically Canadian to take on a self-deprecating attitude … part of our modest and humble style.  Yet, I’m disappointed by the number of news stories focused on glitches and tough expectations on our athletes.Yes, it’s worth reporting on the technical malfunction that caused one of the legs of the indoor flame cauldron at the opening ceremonies to remain underground. However, what’s wrong with also focusing on the class and professionalism with which the flame-bearers dealt with that unexpected issue?Advertisementlast_img read more

Craft captures new horizons near Jupiter

first_imgThe craft had the “incredible good luck,” to be at the right orientation to see Jupiter’s thin rings, said Jeff Moore of NASA’s Ames Research Center at Moffett Field in the Bay Area. Those pictures revealed that the dark boulders that fill the rings are shepherded into alignment by the two tiny moons Metis and Andrastea, which orbit on either side of them. Because New Horizons’ instruments work best in the dim light of the solar system’s distant corners, while studying Jupiter the researchers “were actually operating, in a way, with one hand tied behind our back,” said Alan Stern, New Horizon’s principal investigator for NASA. “It really gave us a great deal of confidence that we’re going to do a killer Pluto encounter,” Moore said. “We’re going to rock and roll.” elise.kleeman@sgvn.com (626) 578-6300, Ext. 4451160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! New Horizons, which launched a year-and-a-half ago, whipped past Jupiter in February to gain speed for the next nine years of its journey to Pluto. It is now racing away from the sun at nearly 48,000 mph. As it sails into the unknown, it continues sending back data and pictures from its Jovian encounter. “What we’re having fun with is finding new hot spots, new volcanoes on Io,” said JPL planetary geologist Rosaly Lopes. Lopes won a spot in the Guinness World Records book several years ago for her previous studies of Io, during which she became the world’s most-prolific discoverer of volcanoes. After discovering 71 then, she and her colleagues have since identified at least two more using New Horizons data. But Io’s spewing surface was only one of many highlights from New Horizon’s Jupiter flyby. LA CA?ADA FLINT- RIDGE – New Horizons is one lucky spacecraft. As the Pluto-bound mission rocketed past Jupiter earlier this year, scientists said, the craft happened to be in just the right place at just the right time to capture unprecedented views of the giant planet and its moons. Among them, scientists said at a NASA press conference Tuesday, were images of Jupiter’s coal-black rings and a 200-mile high volcanic eruption on its moon Io. The spacecraft “Galileo was orbiting Jupiter for six years and taking pictures of Io for six years, and it never saw a plume like that,” said John Spencer, an astronomer at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colo. “We just happened to breeze by and saw that – we got pretty lucky.” last_img read more

Grandmother cleared of shaking baby to death

first_imgTomeka Smith prayed for this day, this day when her mother’s name would be cleared in the death of her infant son. Shirley Ree Smith, 45, has been in prison since 1997, serving 15 years to life for violently shaking 7-week-old Etzel while the rest of the family slept in its crowded Van Nuys apartment. On Thursday, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned that conviction, ruling: “There has very likely been a miscarriage of justice in this case.” The opinion lifted the spirits of a family that never lost faith. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORESanta Anita opens winter meet Saturday with loaded card “Are you serious? Are you serious? Oh, my God – are you serious?” Tomeka said by telephone when contacted in Illinois where she now lives. “Thank you, Jesus! Thank you, Jesus! Thank you!” Family members never believed that Shirley would have harmed a child she voluntarily helped raise. “I knew the Lord would answer prayer. I didn’t know the day or hour, but I knew it was coming,” Shirley’s mother, Mildred Keys, said by phone from her home in Kankakee, Ill. Shirley isn’t free yet, however, as prosecutors could decide to retry her case. The Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office declined to comment because the federal court’s opinion had not been reviewed. Richard Breen, the deputy attorney general who argued to keep Smith in prison, did not return calls for comment, nor did a spokesman. Writing for the court, Judge William C. Canby Jr. ruled that the prosecution’s case hinged on one huge hypothetical: The shaking was so violent it sheared parts of the brain stem, killing Etzel immediately. But the prosecution’s experts provided no proof of such damage. In fact, Dr. Stephanie Erlich, deputy county coroner, testified she had not inspected the brain stem and “wouldn’t have seen anything anyway,” according to the opinion. Some 300 to 400 children are shaken to death nationally each year, according to the Utah-based National Center on Shaken Baby Syndrome. These children typically have bruises and broken bones and experience retinal hemorrhaging. Etzel had none of these and also was much younger than most shaken babies. His autopsy did show some bleeding on the brain, but the prosecution’s witnesses conceded that it was not enough to kill him. “An expert’s testimony as to a theoretical conclusion or inference does not rescue a case that suffers from an underlying insufficiency of evidence,” Canby wrote. In 30 to 60 days, Shirley could be released from the Central California Women’s Facility in Chowchilla, said Michael J. Brennan, the University of Southern California law professor who took on her case and argued it Feb. 8, 2005, in Pasadena. Shirley raised Tomeka alone outside of Chicago. In 1996, they decided it was time for something new. So Shirley and two of Tomeka’s children, Yolanda and Yondale, flew to Los Angeles. They moved into Shirley’s sister’s Van Nuys apartment and waited for Tomeka to join them. Tomeka was 18 and eight months pregnant when she arrived in Los Angeles on Oct. 8. Two days later, she gave birth to Etzel – two weeks premature, jaundiced and suffering from a heart murmur. His health, however, improved quickly. On Nov. 30, Tomeka rocked Etzel to sleep and laid him on his stomach on a couch in the family room. Her mother curled up on the floor next to Yolanda, then 4, and Tomeka went into her aunt’s room to listen to music before falling asleep. It was the first night she had slept in a different room from her baby – something she was never able to do with her fourth child. At 1:30 a.m., Shirley awoke to find Etzel on the floor. She laid him back on the couch and returned to sleep. About two hours later, though, she awoke again and saw that Etzel had vomited. Shirley also noticed blood oozing from his right nostril. He was cold to her touch and limp. She carried him to Tomeka, who dialed 911. He was pronounced dead at Mission Community Hospital that morning. The death was initially attributed to sudden infant death syndrome, an unexplainable condition that takes the lives of about 2,500 American infants each year. But authorities quickly became suspicious of Shirley and within a week had opened a homicide investigation. She had appeared “apprehensive” to firefighters and paramedics, according to the ruling. She was the only adult sleeping with the children. And she told police she had given him a “little shake,” though she said that meant she rocked him from side to side. Before her mother was arrested, another battle began for Tomeka – the fight to save her kids, whom she said were taken by protective services. The Department of Children and Family Services does not confirm or deny cases because of privacy. “It was like losing my family all at once,” Tomeka said. “I had no reason to live.” Shirley’s extended family was poor, so they couldn’t afford the likes of a Johnnie Cochran to defend her in court. “The money we had, nothing but chump change, we dug up,” said Shirley’s mother, Mildred. With that they paid for the services of Ubiwe K. Eriye, who had only one year of legal practice in California. Eriye’s license with the California Bar is active, but all listed phone numbers for Eriye and Associates’ downtown office have been disconnected. “She might have been better off with a public defender because that man didn’t do nothing,” Keys said. A Van Nuys jury found her guilty of assault on a child resulting in death. Tomeka, who turns 28 today, hasn’t seen her mother since. If the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals’ ruling isn’t challenged, she will be able to spend her next birthday with “the best mom in the world.” Shirley’s attorney called the prison Thursday to arrange a phone call for this morning. He needs to tell her the news. Brad A. Greenberg, (818) 713-3634 brad.greenberg@dailynews.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

Batch of chicken nuggets recalled over food safety fears

first_imgA batch of Birds Eye Chicken Nuggets is being recalled over fears they may contain small pieces of plastic.The Food Safety Authority has issued a recall notice today for a batch of Birds Eye 50 Chicken Nuggets with Golden Wholegrain.The alert relates to 790g packs of the products which have a ‘best before’ date of October 2020 – with batch code L9208 Z V124. The danger relates to the possible presence of small pieces of plastic in the nuggets. Customers who have the product are being told not to eat them and to return bags to stores for a full refund.Point-of-sale notices will be displayed in affected retail stores that are selling this brand of chicken nuggets.“No other batch codes or Birds Eye products are known to be affected,” the Food Safety Authority of Ireland said.Batch of chicken nuggets recalled over food safety fears was last modified: October 16th, 2019 by Rachel McLaughlinShare 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)last_img read more

Breathing new life into Hillbrow

first_imgThe Shandukani Centre for Maternal and Child Health recently won the Colosseum Conservation Award for exemplary work in conservation of heritage buildings in the inner city.(Image: Wilma den Hartigh) What used to be the old Van Niekerk operating theatre of the former Johannesburg General Hospital in Hillbrow, has been transformed into a public facility of which inner city residents can be proud.(Image: WRHI) Shandukani’s historical significance meant that much of the structure had to be preserved, but at the same time the architects wanted to add a modern edge and introduce greening elements. (Image: WRHI) The development of external public spaces such as courtyards was a priority. Courtyards and walkways have been landscaped with large deciduous trees, benches and a colourful mural.(Image: Wilma den Hartigh) Service cabling was placed in steel cable tracks suspended from the ceiling, adding a futuristic edge to the centre.(Image: Wilma den Hartigh)MEDIA CONTACTS• Yael Horowitz Programme manager+27 11 358 5481Wilma den HartighJohannesburg’s inner city suburb of Hillbrow has become home to a new world class maternal and child health facility. The Shandukani Centre, one of the largest non-hospital based clinics in Southern Africa, will provide expert healthcare and treatment to vulnerable women and children, right on their doorstep.Visiting the Shandukani Centre for Maternal and Child Health, it is hard to believe that this modern, beautifully renovated building was once completely derelict and unsafe.What used to be the old Van Niekerk operating theatre (built in 1927) of the former Johannesburg General Hospital in Hillbrow, has been transformed into a public facility of which inner city residents can be proud.The Shandukani development is an important project for the inner city. Hillbrow is a high-density neighbourhood, estimated to be home to about 800 000 people. Over the years the area has become plagued by poverty, overcrowding, a thriving sex worker industry, crime and above-average rates of HIV and infectious diseases.The new facility, equipped with modern furnishings and the latest high-tech equipment, forms part of the Hillbrow Health Precinct (HHP), a world first in the fight against HIV and related diseases, poverty and urban renewal in Johannesburg’s inner city.Speaking at the official handover ceremony, Gauteng MEC for Health Ntombi Mekgwe said the facility is a positive and progressive initiative. “What we thought was a pipe dream is now a reality,” Mekgwe said.Shandukani is a public-private partnership between the Gauteng Department of Health, Vodacom, Altron, Altech and the Wits Reproductive Health and HIV Institute.High-end healthcare Shandukani, a Venda word for ‘change’, is an appropriate name for the new healthcare facility that is breathing new life into Hillbrow. “We are thrilled to have this name because what we are doing here is all about change,” said project manager Yael Horowitz.The facility is improving access to pre- and post-natal medical care for women and children, while simultaneously bringing about urban renewal by restoring several once-beautiful historical buildings as centres of medical excellence.“The project is already making a huge difference to the medical footprint in the inner city,” Horowitz said.In addition to its role as a maternal health facility and working labour ward, equipped with the latest technology, Shandukani will also be a base to train healthcare providers, community workers and researchers.The centre has just opened its doors, and already 30 babies a day have entered the world here. Professional nursing staff will deliver about 300 babies each month at Shandukani.It is estimated that 30% of women visiting the clinic are HIV positive, and the centre expects to prevent transmission of HIV to about 85 newborns every month.Also based at Shandukani is a top research team working on a range of health-related topics including HIV/Aids, TB, maternal and child healthcare, infectious diseases, reproductive health and social science.Urban renewal According to the specialist conservation architects working on the project, Henry Paine & Partners, the value of the buildings at the HHP, including Shandukani, lies not only in the historic style and design.Many people have a strong connection with the hospital, which served all of Johannesburg’s communities at some time in its history. The precinct has an historical association with many medical students, doctors and nurses who learned their profession at this teaching hospital.The buildings also tell a story about development of healthcare and medical technology. When the Johannesburg General Hospital was in its prime, it offered progressive medical care and was in the same league as other well known hospitals around the world.Now that the once dilapidated building has been entirely revitalised and is a fully functional clinic facility, it can continue to make advances in the field of medicine.Improving public healthcareSpeaking at the handover function, Minister of Health Dr Aaron Motsoaledi said Shandukani can make an important contribution to improving public healthcare delivery.“There is a lot of scepticism about whether public healthcare in South Africa will ever change, but we are more determined than ever before to have such a change,” Motsoaledi said. “This centre is part of that change.”He added that South Africa, unlike many other countries, has a quadruple burden of disease including rising maternal and child mortality and HIV/Aids, which is the “biggest public health crisis that the country has ever faced”.He said the new Shandukani facility is a solution to these challenges. “We have to strengthen our healthcare system and re-engineer primary healthcare. Shandukani is part of this.”Motsoaledi commended the corporate partners for their contribution, totalling R28-million (US$3.4-million). “For the companies involved, you are on the right track,” he said.Comfortable and invitingHorowitz explained that they wanted to create more than just a maternal facility – the centre had to be welcoming and comfortable.This is why the development of external public spaces such as courtyards and overflow waiting facilities was a priority.Courtyards and walkways have been landscaped with large deciduous trees, making these areas cool in summer and warm in winter. The main courtyard area also has benches and a beautiful mural painted by Bronwyn Moore.Many seemingly little details make a big difference to people’s experience of the facility, such as benches along the pathways where pregnant women walking up the hill can rest.“Everything we’ve done here is about dignity for all people,” Horowitz said.Extensive renovations and greeningThe Shandukani facility recently won the Colosseum Conservation Award for exemplary work in conservation of heritage buildings in the inner city.To be eligible for the award, the project had to fulfil renovation criteria as set out in national and provincial heritage policies. The Colosseum Award came about in 1982 during the struggle to save the Colosseum building – a ten-story residential building located in the heart of Johannesburg – from demolition.Shandukani’s historical significance meant that much of the structure had to be preserved, but at the same time the architects wanted to add a modern edge and introduce greening elements.Undertaking such complex renovations was no easy feat, but they got it right.Kylie Richards of Henry Paine & Partners explained that older buildings were often built with the local climate and site conditions in mind, meaning that running and operating costs were significantly lower.“A good example of this is the incredible floor to ceiling height of 3.8 metres at Shandukani,” she said. “These large volumes with their high windows result in fantastic levels of natural daylight, reducing the need for artificial lighting.”The thick masonry walls, the high ceilings and many large opening windows together contribute to a comfortable indoor climate in Johannesburg, a relatively hot African city.Devices used to further enhance the environmental sustainability of the project include a ducted fresh-air system, instead of traditional air conditioning. This will help to reduce operating energy costs. Rooms that are not occupied at night have motion sensors so that lights are automatically switched off.Richards said that wherever possible existing finishes, structures and historical features have been kept as part of the building and re-used. “There is nothing more ‘green’ than recycling an old building.”According to Horowitz, 60% of all wood used in the renovations was recycled from original roof rafters.The large overhang of the second floor acts as a shading mechanism for the large north-facing windows below it. Aluminium filigree screens shade the most exposed portions of glass, acting both as privacy screens for consulting rooms and as a means to reduce heat.To honour the important history of the building, architects incorporated extraordinary photographs of the original building and operating theatre into the overhang. Inside, original signage recovered during the renovations are displayed prominently on the walls in the foyer.Floor finishes such as natural cork tiles were installed on the second floor and Marmoleum sheeting was used on the ground and first floors.“All the floors are bright green which introduces an element of fun,” Horowitz says.The building’s historical status means that the architects couldn’t alter original internal arches, and to get around this limitation service cabling was placed in steel cable tracks suspended from the ceiling, adding a futuristic edge to the centre.Henry Paine describes Shandukani as one of his favourite projects ever. “It offers everything. Social benefits to the community, history and heritage, and interesting construction,” Paine said.last_img read more

Perlas rebounds, routs Myanmar by 90 points

first_imgCindy Resultay of Perlas Pilipinas. Photo from Fiba.comPerlas Pilipinas needed only the first few minutes of the game to put Myanmar away en route to a 123-33 win in the 2017 Southeast Asian Games women’s basketball tournament Tuesday at MABA Stadium in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.The Filipinos, who raced to a 33-8 lead at the end of the opening period, had six players in double-digit scoring with Clare Castro leading the way.ADVERTISEMENT Trump signs bills in support of Hong Kong protesters The 6-foot-4 Castro out of Far Eastern University posted a double-double with 21 points and 12 rebounds with four blocks to boot.Cindy Resultay and Raiza Palmera-Dy added 16 points each for the Philippines, which got back on track after bowing to Indonesia, 78-68, Monday.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingPerlas padded on to its lead as the game progressed as it widened the gap to 50, 64-14, by halftime.The Philippines, which is eyeing its first-ever gold medal in women’s hoops after finishing fourth in the 2015 SEA Games, improved to 2-1. Pagasa: Storm intensifies as it nears PAR View comments LATEST STORIES NATO’s aging eye in the sky to get a last overhaul Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games03:07PH billiards team upbeat about gold medal chances in SEA Games05:25PH boxing team determined to deliver gold medals for PH03:04Filipino athletes share their expectations for 2019 SEA Games00:45Onyok Velasco see bright future for PH boxing in Olympics02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:36Manny Pacquiao part of 2019 SEA Games opening ceremony Robredo should’ve resigned as drug czar after lack of trust issue – Panelo Lacson: SEA Games fund put in foundation like ‘Napoles case’ Celebrity chef Gary Rhodes dies at 59 with wife by his side MOST READ Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Tough routine wins Capellan another gymnastics gold Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextlast_img read more