Africa ‘to target 80% online by 2020’

first_img8 June 2012A medium-term target of 80% internet connectivity across Africa by 2020 has been set, Communications Minister Dina Pule told delegates at the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Indaba in Cape Town on Thursday.“In this connected future, all of Africa’s major cities, towns and villages will be connected to affordable internet, thereby facilitating the continent’s mass entry into the knowledge and information economy,” Pule said in her closing speech.Inter-ministerial meetings held during the indaba yielded a resolution to engage with the rest of Africa on the ICT journey.The support of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) in their plans to update regulations would also be provided, Pule said. “[It] should help developing countries to benefit from the frameworks for interconnections and roaming in the telecommunications market.”A team was being set up to monitor the progress and implementation of resolutions made at the indaba, and feedback would be shared with other African countries. Regional and continental organisations would interact with countries which were not represented at the indaba.Pule said that delivering broadband access to every African citizen would accelerate the attainment of the UN Millennium Development Goals.“Our work will also assist us in identifying and closing the skills gap within our countries.”The benefit of such an approach would be Africa creating its own technologies instead of just being a consumer for them, she said.It was the government’s role, within the information and communications sector, to act as a regulator.”We never abdicate that responsibility to anyone,” said Pule.Working with the private sector and entrepreneurs – especially the youth – could provide further opportunities, though.Sustainable jobs, some of which might not exist today, could also be created if large and small to medium businesses were allowed the space to innovate.“This will help us close the gap between policymakers and the entrepreneurs who are crucial in the creation of jobs,” she said.Expansion of the mobile application industry served as an example of a job creation area which did not exist three years ago, Pule said. “Now it employs millions of people and is making the lives of many easier.”Sapalast_img read more

Africa’s very own Walk of Fame

first_img10 July 2015An Afri-Global Walk of Stars, similar to the Hollywood Walk of Fame, was planned along Cradock Avenue, in the northern Johannesburg suburb of Rosebank, the African Global Heritage Foundation (AGHF) said.It will feature five-pointed stars inlaid into the pavement, which will be inscribed with names of people who have distinguished themselves and have left their mark globally and locally.“The walk is set to be a huge resource for Rosebank,” said Phineas Tichana, the Walk of Stars executive producer, “and a mega marketing tool for Johannesburg to promote tangible heritage as an open air museum, and enhance the business, cultural, and civic well-being of South African and African achievement.”Mock unveilingThe walk has been dedicated to Nelson Mandela, as well as every other South African and African who has made an outstanding impact on the world.A mock unveiling will coincide with Nelson Mandela International Day on 18 July. “A formal inaugural induction will then be held in September to induct the first South African and African stars,” reported the Rosebank Killarney Gazette.CategoriesStars will be given to people who have excelled in radio, music, sport, film, television and performing arts, as well as to those who have rendered great service to their fellow citizens.Other categories will make provision for contributions from corporates, humanitarian organisations, and special honourees.The general public can nominate people, and the selection committee will make the final decision.The African Walk of StarsThe South African class of inaugural inductees:Recording: Ladysmith Black Mambazo, Hugh Masekela, Oscar Mdlongwa aka Oskido, Jonathan Butler, Lerato Molapo aka Lira, Chicco Twala, Johnny CleggTheatre/live performance: Joe Mafela, Sello Maake KaNcubeSport: Lucas Radebe, Francois Pienaar, AB de Villiers, Gary Player, Ali Bacher, Caster SemenyaMeritorious: Imtiaz Sooliman, Andrew Mlangeni, Ahmed Kathrada, George Bizos, Desmond Tutu, Patrice MotsepeTelevision: Rolene Strauss, Connie Ferguson, Siyabonga Twala, Bonang MathebaFilm: Leon Schuster, Terry PhetoThe African class of inaugural InducteesRecording: Oliver Mtukudzi, Sade Aku, Salif KeitaFilm: Lupita Nyong’o, Genevieve NnajiTelevision: Alek WekSport: Didier DrogbaFrontline member-states champions:Kenneth KaundaRobert MugabeJoaquim ChissanoQuett MasireSam NujomaSamora MachelJulius NyerereKamuzu BandaHollywood Walk of FameEM Stuart, the volunteer president of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, came up with the idea of a Walk of Fame in 1953. He wanted to “maintain the glory of a community whose name means glamour and excitement in the four corners of the world”.Eight years later, in 1960, construction of the famed walk began.“An average of two stars are added to the walk on a monthly basis,” reads the Walk of Fame site. “The walk is a tribute to all of those who worked so hard to develop the concept and to maintain this world-class tourist attraction.”Source: Rosebank Killarney Gazettelast_img read more

New Overtime Rules are Almost Here: Don’t Overlook These 6 Key Areas

first_imgSince the U.S. Department of Labor finalized changes to the Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) overtime rules in May, I’ve been travelling across the country providing educational seminars to business owners, and HR and finance leaders on the looming changes.So, what will the President Trump administration mean for Fair Labor Standards Act changes? While President-elect Trump pledged to support a pro-employer agenda, it might be politically difficult to repeal or change the FLSA overtime increases. These measures are generally popular with employees who stand to receive a pay increase effective on December 1, 2016, and it would be difficult for employers to revoke increases granted before President-elect Trump takes office. So, employers should take predictions of dramatic changes in policy with a grain of salt, because we don’t know what is going to happen. For the time being, therefore, the best advice that we can give to employers is to “stay the course,” keep preparing for the new FLSA exemption rules set to take effect on December 1, and be prepared for further changes in the future.At this point in the game, most companies I’ve met with understand that the salary threshold for exempt workers has more than doubled to $47,476, and they’ve decided whether to reclassify employees as nonexempt, increase salaries of impacted employees, or redistribute work and redefine people’s roles.The biggest challenge remaining: Communicating the changes to employees before the new regulations take effect on December 1. To ensure your company has all of its i’s dotted and t’s crossed, be sure to consider the following key areas that may be easy to overlook:1.      Fine-tuned employee communications and training. Once your business strategy is approved, review and edit your wage and hour policies and then decide how you’ll communicate changes to employees. It’s important to make clear to associates that it’s the law that’s necessitating the changes, not the company, and that there are financial repercussions for noncompliance. Companies then need to decide who’s going to deliver the message, what they will communicate, and how will they do it. Most important, they then need to train reclassified employees and their managers.Employees being reclassified should be trained on new policies and how to track their time. Also, employees who received a pay raise to meet the new salary threshold this year should also be made aware that it doesn’t mean they’ll automatically get another pay increase when the threshold is reexamined in three years.2.      Beyond the salary level test. One of the biggest misperceptions about the new rules is this: Many employers think they only need to focus on the changes to the salary level test to be in compliance. The reality is they can also get into trouble if they’re not complying with the duties tests under the Fair Labor Standards Act. For many companies, the last time they updated job descriptions was when the law changed in 2004. What they need to consider is that after the recession in 2008, many people were laid off and other employees picked up their work without notifying HR of any duty changes. Some of these people could now be doing nonexempt work, but are considered exempt due to their outdated job descriptions. These employees may need to be reclassified, so HR leaders should take this opportunity to figure out whether job descriptions are accurate, and then consult with a legal expert if they feel any back wages are owed.3.      Rules around nondiscretionary bonuses and commissions. Under the new rules, employers are allowed to use nondiscretionary bonuses and incentive payments (including commissions) to satisfy up to 10 percent of the new standard salary level. These payments must be made at least quarterly to count toward the salary threshold. What can be tricky is when you have an employee where 90 percent of the employee’s compensation comes from base pay and 10 percent from a bonus based on performance. If the employee doesn’t do a good job and only receives $500 of their $2,000-a-quarter bonus potential, the company would still have to pay that person the difference if they want the employee to remain exempt. If the threshold is not met in any quarter, the employer must make up the difference by paying the employee a “catch-up” payment in the first pay period after the end of the quarter to maintain the employee’s exempt status; if they don’t make up the difference, the employee is deemed to be non-exempt and overtime pay may be due.4.      Changes in flexibility. Companies need to discuss the loss of flexibility of hours to reclassified employees and ensure they clearly explain that working off the clock (meal and rest breaks, travel to client meetings, responding to email in the evening) is all work time and payable if they are nonexempt. When it comes to mobile device usage, companies may need to decide if nonexempt employees will continue to be allowed to use mobile devices outside of work hours. Companies also need to consider PTO accrual and usage for exempt versus nonexempt employees, which often varies by company. Many nonexempt employees who are reclassified will now have to account for time that they didn’t need to worry about before, such as taking a few hours during the day for a doctor’s appointment.5.      Pay and benefits considerations. Often nonexempt employees are paid weekly and exempt bi-weekly. Be sure to communicate any change in pay frequency to the impacted employees. Also, sometimes only exempt employees are eligible for ancillary benefits like life insurance and disability. For employees who are reclassified but were eligible for these benefits before, companies need to ensure they don’t encourage them to sign up for these benefits during open enrollment only to be told later they are not eligible once the law changes December 1.6.      Morale and productivity pitfalls. When employees are reclassified and have to abide by new policies, employers need to consider how that will impact both employee morale and productivity. For example, if a mobile device is taken away from a newly classified nonexempt employee, will it impact productivity and will the employee feel less valued? Will the employee feel frustrated that he or she used to do work at home and now both the employee and his or her manager have to keep tabs on work hours? I spoke to one research firm that has many employees impacted who are recent college graduates. These employees correlate time with outcomes and work long hours to get results. Therefore, the company had to carefully position the message to employees so they don’t feel their work would be impacted and to ensure managers won’t have to chase them out of the office to avoid paying overtime.Remember this: Whatever your company decides to do will have visibility on social media. You’ll want to make sure that employees feel positive about the change, so they don’t take to social media to complain to hundreds of friends. While communicating big changes can be scary, HR leaders should view this as a positive opportunity to take steps to help ensure that their employees are classified correctly and that the company is not violating wage and hour laws.last_img read more

SOPA-Supporting News Outlets Aren’t Covering SOPA [STUDY]

first_imgA Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… dave copeland Tags:#Government#web MSNBC, Fox News, ABC, CBS and NBC have dedicated no time to covering the Stop Online Piracy Act in their evening newscasts since Oct. 1, according to a report by Ben Dimiero of Media Matters For America.CNN, meanwhile, has dedicated a single evening news segment to the issue. All of the companies covered in the report have either publicly supported SOPA or have parent companies that have done so.Dimiero based his report on Lexis-Nexis searches which includes transcripts of nighttime newscasts.Comcast/NBCUniversal (which owns MSNBC and NBC News), Viacom (CBS), News Corporation (Fox News), Time Warner (CNN) and Disney (ABC) are all listed as supporters of the bill. ABC and CBS are also listed as separate supporters of the bill.SOPA would block access to sites accused of violating U.S. copyright laws. The measure has been called Draconian by opponents who say it would fundamentally change the free-flow of information across the Internet. Proponents, ranging from the NBA to Universal, say the measure is needed to block sites which flagrantly flaunt copyright laws and make content available for free without paying copyright owners.Traditional media companies have been key players in lobbying for SOPA’s passage, with more than half of that funding coming from cable television providers, commercial TV and radio stations, and the entertainment industry. Opponents of the legislation have been developing apps to help voters track how their legislators stand on SOPA and how much they have received in campaign donations from SOPA-supporting entities. 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Marketcenter_img Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts last_img read more

Illinois Proposes Regs on Combined Reporting for Unitary Groups

first_imgIllinois addresses combined apportionment for unitary groups with members that apportion their income differently. In proposed rules, the Department of Revenue addresses 2017 legislation that permits unitary groups to include members that use different apportionment formulas.Industry Specific Apportionment Rules Still UsedThe new apportionment formula, in effect as of January 1, 2018, begins with subrgroups of members that use the same industry specific apportionment formula apportioning income as though they are a separate unitary group. The Department of Revenue’s regulation provides an example of a unitary business group with sales members, insurance company members, and transportation members. The example illustrates how the proposed apportionment changes work.Industry Specific Apportionment Still FollowedComments on the proposed rules must be submitted no later than 45 days after their publication date in the register. The proposed rule is printed in the Illinois Register, as well as the address to submit comments.Proposed 86 Ill. Adm. Code Sec. 100.3600, Illinois Register, Vol. 2, Iss. 45, November 9, 2018Login to read more tax news on CCH® AnswerConnect or CCH® Intelliconnect®.Not a subscriber? Sign up for a free trial or contact us for a representative.last_img read more

Neil Gaiman To Give Douglas Adams Memorial Lecture For Save The Rhino

first_imgAuthor Neil Gaiman will give the Douglas Adams Memorial Lecture at the Royal Geographical Society in London in 2015.The Douglas Adams Memorial Lecture has been held every year since 2003 in memory of Save the Rhino’s founder patron Douglas Adams, to raise money for Save the Rhino and the Environmental Investigation Agency.Neil Gaiman is the bestselling author of books, short stories and graphic novels for adults and children. The recipient of many awards, some of his most notable works include The Sandman comic series, two episodes of Doctor Who, as well as the novels The Graveyard Book (the first book ever to win both the Newbery and Carnegie medals) and The Ocean at the End of the Lane, the UK’s National Book Award 2013 Book of the Year. He worked with Douglas Adams when he wrote Don’t Panic: The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Companion (1987).The event takes place on March 3, 2015. More info can be found here.last_img read more

CANADIAN ACTRESS COBIE SMULDERS LANDS THE LEAD ROLE IN ABC SERIES STUMPTOWN

first_img Login/Register With: Advertisement . Advertisement Advertisement Twitter Facebook James Griffiths is an executive producer and directed the pilot. The series is produced by ABC Studios. ABC Studios is a part of Disney Television Studios, a collection of studios comprised of 20th  Century Fox Television, ABC Studios and Fox 21 Television Studios.Cast: Cobie Smulders as Dex Parios, Tantoo Cardinal as Sue Lynn Blackbird, Cole Sibus as Ansel Parios, Adrian Martinez as Tookie with Camryn Manheim as Lieutenant Cosgrove and Michael Ealy as Detective Miles Hoffman.So excited to announce that #Stumptown is coming to ABC this fall! pic.twitter.com/69aASpcUU0— Cobie Smulders (@CobieSmulders) May 14, 2019 Based on the Stumptown graphic novel series, Stumptown follows Dex Parios (Cobie Smulders) – a strong, assertive and sharp-witted army veteran with a complicated love life, gambling debt and a brother to take care of in Portland, Oregon. Her military intelligence skills make her a great PI, but her unapologetic style puts her in the firing line of hardcore criminals and not quite in alliance with the police. Watch the official trailer for Stumptown, coming WEDNESDAYS 10|9c to ABC this fall.Writer Jason Richman produces the series with Ruben Fleischer and David Bernad (The District), Greg Rucka (author of the Stumptown graphic novel series), Matthew Southworth, and Justin Greenwood (illustrators of the Stumptown graphic novel series).Cobie Smulders stars as Dex Parios in the new drama, Stumptown, coming WEDNESDAYS 10|9c to ABC this fall Cobie Smulders (Askmen.com) LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment last_img read more

Morbid reports on Kevino Smith said to be untrue

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppProvidenciales, 26 Mar 2015 – Despite some morbid reports about the search results for Kevino Smith, a Grand Turk man missing since March 4th… we have learned that it was all rumor. Four investigators were dispatched to the capital to help in the hunt for the 25 year old. Recommended for you Related Items:kevino smith, morbid reports Memories of two TCI men lost on March 4 Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Patty Smith on Kevino Smith murder investigation Patty Smith dreading holidays, says ‘Bah’ killers still out therelast_img

House Member put out during heated debate on TCI National Health insurance

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp#TurksandCaicos, November 30, 2017 – Grand Turk – A heated exchange in TCI Parliament led to the member for Grand Turk North being kicked out of the House of Assembly; the suspension of George Lightbourne’s participation in debate Thursday came after repeated warnings from the House Speaker, Dwayne Taylor about Opposition side interruptions.The Health Minister was presenting on the National Insurance Board Amendment Bill 2017, responding to Lightbourne’s strong challenges about stripping the board of members who represent the voice of the people, as described by the MP for Grand Turk North.   Minister Edwin Astwood strongly differed in his view of reducing the size of the National Health Insurance Board, saying all of the board members including the Opposition’s appointed person were there to be the voice of the people, acting on behalf of the people.The Minister expressed outrage at the thought that anyone on the NHIP board would do anything but take into consideration what is best for the people of the Turks and Caicos and also vehemently defended Premier Sharlene Robinson, who is out of country attending a UK Overseas Territories meeting.   Minister Astwood said, I am the man, who knows about healthcare in the country and chided the Opposition, for as he put it, ‘lying on the Leader’ knowing she was not even there to defend herself.The Health Minister, as asked for by the Opposition, brought his explanation of why the composition of the NHIP board was being reduced from 15 to nine members; he said it was because the members there to so called represent the employees never actually get out and make any contact with employees.    He challenged those in his hearing to ask around about whether anyone from NHIP has ever been in consultation at schools, construction sites or even at the health care plan’s office to find out their thoughts in order to represent them at the meetings.    The Minister was illustrating that some positions are not necessary.#MagneticMediaNews#heateddebateinHOA#ministertossedoutofHouseofAssembly Related Items:#heateddebateinHOA, #magneticmedianews, #ministertossedoutofHouseofAssembly Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

Scientists found a new venomous snake that can strike sideways

first_img 2 Mark-Oliver Roedel The stiletto breed of snakes are tricky for scientists and handlers to deal with. It’s not because they’re particularly aggressive, rather it’s because they inject their venom by stabbing their fangs out to the side of their mouth. In what’s good news for nature lovers and bad news for anyone who may have to actually hold one of these snakes, a new species of stiletto snake has been discovered in West Africa by Dr. Mark-Oliver Roedel and his team from Berlin’s Natural History Museum.The new snake is called Branch’s Stiletto Snake, or Atractaspis branchi, in honour of South African snake expert William Branch, who passed away last October. The team found three of the new snakes, and said in their paper that the species can be found in western Liberia and southeastern Guinea.Scientists usually hold snakes with good ol’ fingers-behind-the-head technique, since most snakes attack by opening their mouth and lunging forward. This doesn’t work for Branch’s Stiletto Snake and others in its family, who can bite — by stabbing with their fangs — without even opening their mouths.The team says the new species is thinner with a longer tail-to-snout ratio compared to other stiletto snakes. They also hypothesize that such snakes are endemic to the Upper Guinea forest zone. Comments Sci-Techcenter_img Tags Share your voicelast_img read more