Scotiabank boosts Prep cricket with increased sponsorship

first_imgScotiabank, who pride themselves as sponsors of the regional game, starting from the youth level, pumped a 25 per cent increase into this year’s Scotiabank/Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA) Prep Schools Cricket competition yesterday.The increase will bring the sponsorship package to $5 million, along with MVP cash prizes of $50,000 for players in the counties of Cornwall, Middlesex and Surrey.”This increase in sponsorship is a testimony to our continued belief in the importance of investing in youth through developmental sports,” said Yanique Forbes-Patrick, vice-president, Scotiabank Marketing.”Always play your best game. Strive to be the best on your team. Be champions in your own right and make a difference in everything you do,” she implored the youngsters during yesterday’s launch at Lucas Cricket Club, after which defending champions Quest Prep and Richmond Prep played the competition’s opening game.BETTER CITIZENSCourtney Francis, CEO, Jamaica Cricket Association (JCA), lauded Scotiabank for ensuring that “cricket is part of the medium to make you all (players) better citizens, more responsible, understand and learn at this stage how to be part of a team and how to be able to contribute to society”.Quest were crowned national champions for the first time last year, after defeating Hydel Prep by 10 runs in the final at Lucas.Hydel, the most successful school with two national titles (2012, 2013) and four in Surrey, followed by St Peter and Paul, Monymusk, Mona, Lannaman, Belair Prep and Quest one each.In Cornwall, there are only two winners; Denis Tobin in 2005 and 2006, while St James have been unbeatable since 2007.Quest’s coach, Leonard Malcolm, told The Gleaner his team is missing about eight players from last year, “but we are a competitive school and we are going to compete to try and retain our crown”.The competition will run to June 12 and feature a total of 48 teams, with approximately 121 matches across three counties.The competition began in 2003 and has grown from 24 schools to 48; 24 from Kingston and St Andrew and St Catherine, 12 from Middlesex and 12 from Cornwall.Prep school standouts to come from the competition include Brandon King, who has represented Jamaica at all levels, Brad Barnes (2013), Raewin Senior (2014) and Kirk McKenzie last year.West Indies’ World T20 men and women’s champions, Marlon Samuels and Stafanie Taylor, respectively, also participated and signed bats and balls for the youngsters.last_img read more

ASEAN University Games: NU barges into men’s volleyball finals

first_imgThe Philippines continued its solid showing in the 19th ASEAN University Games men’s volleyball tournament, as the Filipino represented by reigning UAAP men’s champion National University topped Indonesia, 25-14, 25-23, 25-13, to make it to the gold medal round Thursday in Naypyitaw, Myanmar.Except for a close second set, the Philippines was dominant in the semifinals match to extend its undefeated run to three games and assure itself of a podium finish.ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ Chito Victolero to Alex Compton: ‘Referees decide what’s a foul, not coaches’ LATEST STORIES ‘Mia’: Rom-com with a cause a career-boosting showcase for Coleen Garcia Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil After winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folk The Filipinos surpassed their the bronze medal achievement two years ago in the biennial meet for the student-athletes in the region.Up next for the Philippines is a rematch with defending champion Thailand, which fashioned out a 25-19, 25-20, 25-17 victory over Myanmar in the other semis duel on Friday.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSJapeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for GinebraSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissThe Filipinos pulled off a shocking 30-28, 25-23, 25-19 win over the Thais, in last Sunday’s opener. Like the Philippines, Thailand is also 3-0 in the tournament. Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard PLAY LIST 02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player awardcenter_img No.13 lucky for Orlando Bloom Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California college Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Japeth Aguilar embraces role, gets rewarded with Finals MVP plum View commentslast_img read more

Man Utd fight back to beat Chelsea

first_img“I think he played fantastically well,” said Mourinho on Lukaku’s performance.“The team didn’t start well, didn’t start very confident, happened the same to him…he was a little bit lost but then he went together with the team.“He ended the game with the image of a hand in the goal.”Victory against his former club was particularly sweet for Jose Mourinho as he got one over on Chelsea boss Antonio Conte, but more importantly moves United back above Liverpool into second place in the Premier League.“It’s a good day for me and we won so that’s the most important thing,” said Lukaku.“To get the winner would have been even better for me, but to get the goal before half-time was really important for us. We showed our qualities and our desire in the second half.”Defeat allied to Tottenham Hotspur’s late win earlier in the day at Crystal Palace sees Chelsea slip to fifth.The visitors enjoyed the better of the first period but failed to build on Willian’s 32nd minute opener.“For sure we missed by disappointed for the final result,” said Conte.“Because when you have this type of situation you have to manage the game better with experience and maturity to get three points.”The spectre of another fiery clash between Mourinho and Conte, who have publicly bickered in recent months, hogged the headlines before kick-off, but there was a peace offering when the pair shook hands before the action got underway.Mourinho recalled Paul Pogba to his starting XI after dropping the £89 million (100 million euros, $124 million) midfielder for Wednesday’s stalemate at Sevilla in the Champions League.But it was one of Conte’s two changes from his side’s 1-1 draw with Barcelona in midweek who nearly made an immediate impact.Alvaro Morata started for the first time in six weeks, but saw his side-footed volley from Marcos Alonso’s driven cross come back off the bar just four minutes in.– United caught out –This way and that: Jose Mourinho and Antonio Conte on the touchline at Old Trafford on Sunday © AFP / Oli SCARFFFor all Chelsea’s possession in the first period, it was from a blistering counter-attack they opened the scoring.Willian picked up the ball just outside his own area and drove through the United midfield before exchanging passes with Eden Hazard.The Brazilian then unleashed a shot too powerful even for David de Gea to register his fourth goal in three games.The lead lasted just seven minutes, though, as for the first time in a United shirt, Lukaku netted against one of their top six rivals — at the seventh time of asking.Aleixs Sanchez fed Anthony Martial and his clever reverse pass was slotted home by Lukaku to muted celebrations against his former club.Lukaku nearly had a spectacular second 22 minutes from time when he caught a Sanchez cross flush with an acrobatic volley, only to be denied by a finger tip save from Courtois.However, the Belgian did make a decisive contribution when he dropped deep and his in-swinging cross was met by a perfectly timed run by Lingard.Conte had surprisingly removed Hazard just before conceding and that decision looked all the more puzzling as Chelsea searched in vain for an equaliser.Willian saw another effort smothered by De Gea at the second attempt at his near post as United held out for just a second win over Chelsea in 15 meetings.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Goal-scorer Romelu Lukaku turned provider for Manchester United’s winner © AFP / Oli SCARFFMANCHESTER, United Kingdom, Feb 25 – Jose Mourinho hailed Romelu Lukaku’s ability to bounce back from a difficult start as the Belgian inspired a Manchester United fightback to beat Chelsea 2-1 at Old Trafford.Lukaku cancelled out Willian’s opener with his first United goal against top six Premier League opposition before crossing for Jesse Lingard to head home the winner 15 minutes from time.last_img read more


first_imgThere must be something in Jim McGuinness’ tam tlaks that makes his players want to ‘bond’.Just a couple of weeks after midfielder Rory Kavanagh tied the knot, another Donegal star has walked down the aisle.Yesterday it was the turn of Ryan Bradley to say ‘I do’ when he married girlfriend Clare Sheerin from Burt. It certain was a GAA affair as Clare is a cousin of Donegal captain Michael Murphy.The couple had their reception at the An Grianan Hotel. ANOTHER DONEGAL STAR MEETS HIS MATCH OFF THE FIELD! was last modified: January 1st, 2012 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:Clare SheerinDonegal GAAmarriedryan bradleylast_img read more


first_imgGAA Bingo- Every Thursday Night At 9.00pm In St Mary’s Hall Clonmany Everyone Welcome.Match & Win for 17/01/2013 No’s Drawn 1,5,10,24 No Jackpot Winner Next Weeks Jackpot Is €940, €15 Consolation Winners Were Denise Donaghy Glebe Clonmany, Raymond Toland Cleagh, John Gill Gortfad, Sarah McCarron Cleagh, Denise Donaghy Glebe Clonmany. MEMBERSHIP 2013 Is now due to be paid Adult €25.00 Child €3.00, All Players must be registered to play Contact David Hession 0860538537 or John Friel 0860523550.Bord na nO’g – Thanks to everyone who attended the Bord na n’Og meeting on Saturday, it was good to see such a good turnout and positive contact from those that couldn’t be there on the evening. Adrian Doherty and Alan Friel would still like to hear from anyone willing to help out with underage coaching for 2013; experience is not a necessary criteria, a willingness to help out where ever needed is though. Full training will be provided and details of relevant coaching courses will be available in the coming weeks. FOUNDATION COACHING COURSE – This course is now arranged for Part 1 Child Protection Friday 8th February 7pm – 10pm and Part 2 Practical Session Saturday 9th February 9am – 4.30pm in Buncrana to put your name forward asap Contact Adrian 0879810304 or Alan 0879029672.Scor – Are performing on Saturday 16th February Contact Patsy (Casey) Devlin for more information.Club Meeting- Next Meeting is arranged for Wednesday 6th February at 8pm.MOUTH GUARDS: Are now to be worn for all games from 1st January 2013 this is compulsory and anyone not wearing one will not be able to play referees will be checking you are wearing one, this is for all ages from 8 years to Adults, These are available to buy in Centra Clonmany ( GAA Approved) at a very reasonable price, and also local sports shops.Ladies Football – It is hoped that 2013 will see the return of an Urris ladies team to the pitch and a meeting will be held over the next couple of weeks to try and bring this about. If you are interested in playing or in helping out we would love to hear from you.Contact Adrian Doherty on 087 9810304, or David Hession on 086 0538537, give them your name and details and you will be contacted when the meeting is arranged. The club will have teams playing this year across all age groups from U10 to Minor and would encourage all our members to get the girls in their families to come out and play for their local club.DONEGAL GAA YEAR BOOKS 2012 are now available to buy at €10 each a great gift for any GAA Fan Contact John Friel.Club Merchandise – Another Great Gift Idea from club hats, gear bags, hoodies and jackets something for everyone Contact Alan Friel 0879029672. Club Website items for the notes please send to or text to Liz O’Neill on 0863858629 before 9pm on Sunday evening.GAA NEWS: URRIS CLUB NOTES was last modified: January 21st, 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:Uris GAA Club noteslast_img read more

Which clubs’ players have scored the most goals at the 2018 World Cup?

first_imgAfter 11 days of action at the 2018 World Cup, we are officially at the halfway point in terms of games played.With 32 matches already in the book, 85 goals have been scored, eight of which were by players wearing the Three Lions. 3 goals – Eden Hazard 2, Michy Batshuayi 1 (both Belgium) 2nd. TOTTENHAM HOTSPUR Premier League clubs are leading the way with 27 goals so far, five ahead of La Liga and a massive 20 in front of the Bundesliga in third place.But which clubs have the highest-scoring players?Champions League winners Real Madrid are on top once again, with half of their eight goals coming from Portugal‘s Cristiano Ronaldo, but a pair of Premier League teams are close behind.Here are the top teams at the tournament, as ranked by the Times: 5 goals – Philippe Coutinho 2 (Brazil), Luis Suarez 1 (Uruguay), Ivan Rakitic 1 (Croatia), Yerry Mina 1 (Colombia) =6th. MANCHESTER CITY 8 goals – Cristiano Ronaldo 4 (Portugal), Luka Modric 2 (Croatia), Nacho 1 (Spain), Toni Kroos 1 (Germany) =6th. VILLARREAL 3 goals – John Stones 2 (England), Sergio Aguero 1 (Argentina) 3 goals – Denis Cheryshev 3 (Russia) 7 goals – Harry Kane 5 (England), Christian Eriksen 1 (Denmark), Heung-Min Son 1 (South Korea) 10 3 goals – Kylian Mbappe 1 (France), Neymar 1 (Brazil) 10 10 =6th. PARIS SAINT-GERMAIN 10 10 =3rd. ATLETICO MADRID 10 England’s Harry Kane leads the race for the World Cup Golden Boot with five goals 5 goals – Diego Costa 3 (Spain), Jose Gimenez 1 (Uruguay), Antoine Griezmann 1 (France) =3rd. MANCHESTER UNITED =6th. CHELSEA 10 =3rd. BARCELONA 1st. REAL MADRID 10 10 5 goals – Romelu Lukaku 4 (Belgium), Jesse Lingard 1 (England) 10last_img read more


first_imgDozens of children must walk half a mile across dangerous roads to get into a new playground – despite it being only yards from their front doors.More than 36 families on the Ard Mhuileann housing estate in Convoy were delighted when a new playground was built in their area.But a decision not to put another entrance into the playground means they must negotiate traffic and busy roads. Instead the children must walk across roads and access the playground from its only entrance.The residents are outraged and claim they have pleaded with the Convoy Community and Environmental Committee, who have developed the playground, to see sense.Local mother Louise Minnock said it is impossible to tell children they cannot walk through Convoy village to get to the playground.“It’s like giving children a bag of sweets and telling them they cannot eat them. “They are going to try to get into the playground and they will walk across busy roads if that’s what it takes.“Donegal County Council needs to look at this again and realise how dangerous it is.“It would take a couple of hours to put a new gate into the playground but they are just refusing to do it. They might change their minds when there is an accident,” she said.Indeed there has already been one death nearby when Louise’s nephew Dylan Minnock, 7, was killed on the Milltown Road in June, 2009 when he crossed the road and was hit by a van.Local resident Tony Sweeney said he has even offered to open and lock any new entrance to the playground and keep an eye on it. “They claim they are worried about vandalism if there is another gate put on it but that is nonsense.“I have offered to get a key and open and shut it. I am in the house most of the time and I will keep an eye on it.“None of this makes any sense and all they are doing is putting children’s lives in danger. They need to come to their senses,” he said.Another resident said they suffered for more than six months while trucks and lorries came into their estate building the playground but they never once complained. Frank Kelly of the Donegal Local Development Company, who provided 75% of the funding for the playground, urged all sides to come together saying the facility should be for everyone to have access to.A spokesperson for the Convoy Community and Environmental Committee said Donegal County Council only wanted one entrance to the playground.The council says it fears a build-up of traffic coming into the Ard Mhuileann estate if there is an entrance to the playground.PARENTS PLEAD FOR FAIR PLAY IN ROW OVER PLAYGROUND ENTRANCE was last modified: December 15th, 2011 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:Ard Mhuileannconvoyplaygroundlast_img read more

Carreon picks apart Claremont, 21-7

first_imgCLAREMONT – The dark cloud didn’t return Friday night. But the momentum Claremont built when it snapped Serrano’s 17-game winning streak a weak ago lost some footing during a 21-7 loss to Covina Charter Oak. It left Wolfpack head coach Mike Collins with some concerns about his three-time defending Baseline League champions heading into next week’s opener against Etiwanda. “It really does (take some momentum away),” Collins said of the loss. “We didn’t look like the same team we were last week. Maybe that has something to do with us. Maybe that has something to do with Charter Oak. They shut us down.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! “The dark cloud was us not beating any good teams,” said Collins, whose team is now 2-3. “We beat a good team last week and we lost to a good team this week. Now we open league and I consider everyone in our league a good team. Right now, Etiwanda (2-3) is a world beater to us.” John Cornell, who played only the last three quarters because he missed a practice due to illness, was held to 32 yards on 14 carries and Charter Oak quarterback Drew Carreon rebounded from a sloppy first half to throw three touchdown passes for the Chargers (3-2). center_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe top 10 theme park moments of 2019 Sacked six times for a loss of 29 yards and held to two completions for 21 yards, Carreon got a boost when running back Brian Hunter (183 rushing yards) carried the first touch of the second half 63 yards. Carreon capped that drive with a 21-yard TD pass to Matt Austin and threw another to Michael Johnson near the end of the third quarter. When the Chargers converted a fake punt pass to Chris Hernandez, Carreon found Austin again for an 8-yard TD and a 21-0 lead in the fourth quarter. “He’s young,” Charter Oak coach Lou Farrar said of the sophomore Carreon. “He’s learning with every snap and every practice.” Claremont quarterback Greg Sprowls went in the exact opposite direction in the second half. He completed his first five passes and had the Wolfpack ready to score when Austin fumbled deep in Chargers territory after a 15-yard gain on Claremont’s opening drive. Sprowls threw an interception on Claremont’s next possession and two in the second half, where he missed on eight of 13 attempts. He finished with 184 yards passing, including an 8-yard TD pass to Michael Galland with 9 seconds left in the game. last_img read more

Sharon’s new party focuses on Palestinian statehood

first_imgJERUSALEM – Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s new centrist party on Monday declared Palestinian statehood as a central goal, and Israel signaled it would drop a threat to ban Jerusalem’s Palestinians from voting in their parliamentary election. The signs of a moderate line for present and future political moves were tempered, however, by an announcement of new Israeli settlement construction in the West Bank. The latest building, disclosed in newspaper ads published Monday seeking bids from contractors, would violate Israel’s commitments under the U.S.-backed road map peace plan. The plans include 228 homes in the settlements of Beitar Illit and Efrat – both near Jerusalem. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake Sharon aide Raanan Gissin said plans for the latest construction began more than five years ago. He said the construction would be in settlements that Israel plans to retain after a final peace settlement with the Palestinians. “These are the large settlement blocs; they will be strengthened,” he said. The road map calls for a freeze on all settlement construction in the West Bank, which the Palestinians claim as part of a future state. Since accepting the plan in June 2003, Israel has continued to expand settlements. The Palestinians also have not carried out their initial road map obligation to disarm militant groups. Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat condemned the expansion and urged the U.S. to intervene. U.S. Embassy spokesmen in Israel were not available for comment. The settlement plans came as Sharon’s new political party, Kadima, signaled it is ready to hand over more West Bank territory to the Palestinians and work toward an independent Palestinian state after Israeli elections March 28. Opinion polls forecast a strong victory by Sharon’s bloc. On Monday, doctors disclosed that Sharon, 77, will have to undergo a procedure to close a tiny hole in his heart. The announcement that the defect led to the mild stroke he suffered Dec. 18 drew further attention in the election campaign to Sharon’s health. Sharon left the hard-line Likud Party last month to form Kadima, saying he would have more freedom to negotiate a peace deal. Many Likud members remain furious with Sharon over his withdrawal from the Gaza Strip and part of the West Bank in September. A draft of Kadima’s election platform published Monday called for conceding more land to the Palestinians as part of peace talks culminating in a Palestinian state. The talks would be based on the road map, which endorses a Palestinian state but says its borders must be reached through negotiations. “The basic tenet of the peace process is two national states,” says the platform. Party spokesman Lior Chorev said the draft, detailed in the daily newspaper Maariv, was to be approved by next week. Also Monday, Israeli officials said the government may drop its opposition to allowing Palestinian residents of Jerusalem to vote in next month’s Palestinian elections. Israel threatened last week to bar voting in east Jerusalem since the Islamic group Hamas is participating, a warning that infuriated the Palestinians and led to threats to cancel the election and blame Israel. Control of Jerusalem is one of the central disputes in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.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

Creating an attractive investment environment in SA

first_imgThe downgrading of South Africa’s sovereign credit rating last week by Standard and Poor’s to a BBB rating represented the country’s first credit downgrade in two years and sent worrying messages to the global investment community.  This was followed by similarly pessimistic warnings from Fitch Ratings that, although its BBB rating would remain, its outlook would move the country to a negative status, raising the risk of a further downgrade in the near future.Such pronouncements have a hugely negative effect on South Africa’s global reputation, on business confidence, and the country’s overall ability to position itself effectively and positively as a competitive investment destination of choice in the global marketplace. This comes against a backdrop of domestic, self-inflicted factors such as the ongoing unrest in the mining sector and the challenge of effectively managing monetary policy in a difficult global economic environment.As other global economies are beginning to make positive movements out of the deep financial crisis experienced over the past few years and into more positive territory, it is critical that South Africa learns the lessons of these crises and recognize that the power to move the country forward lies in its own hands.In the words of Gill Marcus, the Governor of the South African Reserve Bank in a recent speech to SAICA (South African Institute of Chartered Accountants) earlier this month, “the solutions are in our own hands and as a country, instead of focusing on whether we are entering a recession or not, we should all be striving to restore the economy to the strong growth path that it is capable of achieving”.However, there are undoubted challenges for South Africa ahead if it is to become once again confident in its ability to position itself positively in the eyes of the world’s investment community and to effectively compete for business as a BRICS player.One only has to look at the recent economic growth rate in the country, -0.6% in the first quarter of the year, with concerns mounting over those growth figures going forward for the remainder of the year, compounded by much publicized labour disputes.There is no doubt that global investor trust and confidence is built over time and South Africa needs to rapidly re-build that confidence. This can be done through a single-minded focus on effectively implementing the positive strategies that have been put in place.  In this way we can ensure that the right messages are sent to the world that South Africa is still ‘open for business’.  The country continues to have a solid platform on which to build, such as the strength of its financial and governance standards, despite the negative impact of the current labour dispute challenges, which will hopefully soon find a lasting resolution.As the Reserve Bank Governor has rightly pointed out, the domestic economy is facing enormous headwinds, many of which are of our own making, and therefore within our capability to resolve, not least of which is the current debilitating labour relations environment.  It requires everyone in the country to stop and think carefully about the negative impact such disputes have on South Africa and its reputation in the global business community and to instead think about the long-term future of the country.It requires every South African to unite behind a common goal of addressing our challenges together and thinking about the bigger socio-economic picture, instead of short-term gains.  At the end of the day, it is the responsibility of all of us – government, business, and citizens of this nation – to work together to resolve these issues and find sustainable solutions that are good for the country as a whole and its future place in the world.As a developing nation, South Africa will be continually confronted with considerable socio-economic challenges that need to be resolved.  However, the development of powerful interventions such as the National Development Plan and the New Growth Path, provide broad yet strong blueprints for dealing with these structural issues, and the focus should remain firmly on the implementation of such plans for the good of the country and all its citizens.At the end of the day, in order to create a better climate for economic growth in South Africa, we need to leverage what we are getting right and find effective and long-term solutions to the challenges that exist.  Sending negative messages to the world and damaging Brand South Africa and how it is perceived will ultimately impact on these efforts. The time is right for the country to unify in the search for inclusive, constructive, and progressive solutions to the challenges our society faces.We undoubtedly live in a time of unprecedented economic upheaval.  As has been seen and experienced elsewhere in the world, no country or its national policy makers are immune from the buffetting of strong, negative economic winds – this has certainly been the case in recent times with South Africa and its strikes and downgrade.However, Government remains firmly committed to taking the necessary measures to enhance the growth potential and competitiveness of the South African economy. The current labour disputes have also highlighted the need to urgently address strained relations between labour and employers. This is not healthy for the economy, or the country’s reputation.The country owes it to itself to be focused on adopting a combination of strategies needed to ensure that it is poised to combat rampant unemployment, as well as inequality.However, we must not lose sight of the things we are getting right and government and society need to work in genuine partnership to pursue the country’s current economic vision with conviction and vigour. In the meantime, South Africa needs to continue to send a message to the world that it is still very much ‘open for business’.last_img read more