first_imgOtago Daily Times 6 August 2012The Roman Catholic Bishop of Dunedin, the Most Rev Colin Campbell, received “nasty” emails after he urged Catholics to oppose a new abortion clinic for Invercargill. More than 8000 parishioners across the Otago and Southland diocese yesterday were read a letter from the bishop saying Catholics were opposed to abortion and “we must do all we can to prevent this culture of death spreading in our country”. Bishop Campbell said he had emails supportive of his stance. “But I have received some nasty emails too, and some are quite personal.” He declined to talk about the exact contents, saying only “I would describe them as offensive”. “The unfortunate thing about this is that the people think this is just a religious thing, but it not just a religious matter. “It is a human matter. “It is not just a woman’s life … There are two lives involved.” Bishop Campbell said those opposing the church’s stance tended to argue that as abortion was legal “they seem to presume that [abortion] is moral, where in fact that is not the case”. “This is taking the life of an unborn child,” he said. By opposing the Southern District Health Board’s plan to establish the Invercargill abortion service, it could potentially stop the “spread” of abortions to Dunedin and elsewhere, he said. read more

first_imgLane Kiffin entered the Varsity Lounge of Heritage Hall on Wednesday bleary-eyed and with a blank expression.Clearly, this was a man who was running on little sleep.But after a tiring homestretch to national signing day, Kiffin can take solace in the famous line from Glengarry Glen Ross — “coffee is for closers.”The class of incoming freshmen that signed with USC on Wednesday affirmed Kiffin’s position as a relentless force on the recruiting trail. Moreover, it helped legitimize a coach who has been under fire since taking over his new post. “We didn’t want to reach and lower our standards,” Kiffin said. “Very often, you’ll see coaches reach in their first year just to make an impression and sign a certain number of kids.”The exact rankings are unimportant — it’s a fool’s errand to attempt to quantify how good high school seniors will be before they play at the collegiate level. But by keeping together what had been Pete Carroll’s class and adding his own touch, Kiffin quelled talk of a USC downfall.Under Carroll, top-ranked recruiting classes became a foregone conclusion. But several top prospects eschewed the Trojans last year, prompting discussions of whether USC had slipped from its perch atop the conference.With the Pac-10 competition entering an arms race, Kiffin needed palpable results as payoff for all those long nights spent working the phones. The day looked dicey when UCLA went on an early afternoon stretch in which several highly touted prospects chose the Bruins on national television, including two who were considering USC.“It was pretty easy [to watch] because I kept thinking about that left tackle that might be coming here later in the day,” Kiffin said.That left tackle is Seantrel Henderson, ranked by some services as the best player in the nation. The 6-foot-8, 335-pound Minnesota native’s verbal commitment adds value and much-needed depth to the Trojans’ roster, but he also shows that USC won’t be beat easily for top players as long as Kiffin is around.In addition to having geography and timing working against the new USC coaching staff, the members had to convince Henderson that all is well in Troy. While other coaches had in-depth relationships with Henderson, Kiffin had to cobble together what he could in three weeks.Yet, there Henderson stood on national television, wearing a comically mismatched white No. 10 USC jersey.When USC hired Kiffin, there were minimal concerns about recruiting. But what the 34-year-old was able to accomplish in less than a month was nothing short of astonishing.“You have to put him up there among the top five — maybe top three — head coaches in terms of recruiting,” ESPN analyst Todd McShay said Wednesday on ESPNU.Kiffin’s first class wasn’t without fault, however. There were more than a couple of sought-after players that turned down the Trojans for another school. And with only a handful of linemen and linebackers, the assortment of players looks more like a flag football team than a group you’d put in pads.But Kiffin admitted the shortcoming and chalked it up to the coaching transition.“The offensive and defensive linemen have more of a bond with their position coach or the school that they’re going to, so it’s hard to come in late and turn those guys,” Kiffin said.Despite whatever shortcomings it may have had, Kiffin’s inaugural recruiting effort will be remembered for how he restored faith in the program to recruits who might have looked elsewhere.“[The recruits] had a sense that things were the same on a lot of fronts here,” Kiffin said. “It’s why I think you saw this class really stay together.”The next task for Kiffin is showing that he can progress all of the four- and five-star players he hoarded. Carroll came under fire for player development, but Kiffin could make his mark early if he thrives in this area.But for now, he deserves praise for the job he did in securing his first class.And maybe he should get that coffee percolating because those class of 2011 players won’t recruit themselves.“Tackling Dummy” runs Thursdays. To comment on this article, visit or e-mail Michael at [email protected]last_img read more

first_img… says rice farmers need to be given more attentionBy Indrawattie NatramWith the troubles the rice industry is currently experiencing in the agricultural region of Pomeroon-Supenaam,The rice cereal factory in Region TwoRegion Two Chairman Devanand Ramdatt is calling on Government to put the rice cereal factory, located at Anna Regina, in operation. Ramdatt made this request at the Flag Raising Ceremony held on May 25, 2016, in the region to mark Guyana’s 50th Anniversary.During his address, Ramdatt noted that unemployment is the major challenge affecting the region, coupled with the low prices offered for paddy. He therefore urged the government to put the factory in operation at the shortest possible time, adding that it will create employment for over 200 persons, and positively impact the rice industry.Ramdatt said he is clueless as to why such a beneficial project has not yet materialized even though the facility was constructed under the previous administration. The chairman said even as Guyana celebrated its 50th Jubilee Anniversary it must be recognized that the economy is struggling and Region Two must not be forgotten.He explained that a careful assessment of the rice industry and timely interventions by government of subsidies on fuel, fertilizers, pesticides, timely payment, rescheduling of loans should be given attention. He told attendees that rice farmers are crying out daily; and pointed to the over 80 per cent of Region Two population who rely on the rice industry one way or the other.“Give priority to our farmers, do not invest in parks without meaningful consultations with our people. If we cannot maintain play grounds, how are we going to sustain these parks? Evidence of deterioration at these Parks is already here with us, farmers need help” Ramdatt reiterated.The chairman further said the region over the years demonstrated to the rest of Guyana that it is a model region; a region where the people are at peace, civility and harmony. He called on government to give positive recognition to the region of 50,000 people.He noted even as Guyana attained 50 years of Independence much more needs to be done for continued progress and positive transformations such as better drainage and irrigation and improvement of roads.He also requested the establishment of a branch of the University of Guyana, a Regional Cultural Centre, implementation of a strategic and integrated approach to address social ills, child sexual abuse and suicide in particular, upgrading of sport facilities and a regional gymnasium, improved telecommunication services, expansion of the region’s tourism sector; and for the establishment of an agro/processing facility to be given priority.last_img read more