A leader by nature, national senior team goalkeeper Andre Blake, who was appointed captain for Jamaica’s crucial Caribbean Cup qualifying match against Suriname at the National Stadium tomorrow at 6 p.m., says he is not the least bit fazed by the role. Blake will lead the team in the absence of the injured Je-Vaughn Watson, and the former Glenmuir High and Sporting Central ‘shot stopper’ says his intention is to always give his best effort for his country and help the team play with one aim. “Every time I represent the country I always give a hundred per cent on the pitch. That’s my objective. So it is an honour as a lot of people want to be in my position, and a lot of people think that they should be in my position, so when I get my chance I have to go out and prove that my selection is justified.” But despite the good feedback he has been getting from local football fans over the last year, Blake insists he is still a work in progress. “It’s great (being the number one goalkeeper) but it’s still work in progress, I am still a growing goalkeeper. Getting a lot of games has helped me to grow a lot and, hopefully, I can continue playing and develop into a goalkeeper that Jamaica can rely on for the next 10 years,” he continued. Pressure However, Blake has been in the role of captain before and knows how to handle this pressure, and he says it will be business as usual for him. “I have been captain before but this is my first role as captain at the national level. It’s a privilege, it’s an honour, so my job now is to try and get the players on the same page so we can go out and do what we have to do. For me it’s no added pressure. I think I’m a leader, I don’t need to go out and do anything out of the norm to put additional pressure, I will just be me, as I have been a leader all my life. “They (Suriname) are a good team and we will have to respect that. We cannot take them lightly, because if we take them lightly it could cost us because. ‘”These days, anybody can beat anybody on any given day. But that is one of my responsibilities, to let the players know that this is a war, we are the champions of the Caribbean, and everyone wants to beat us, so it’s about being focused and going out and giving our best. Hopefully, we can correct that and start better.”
LONDON — The Raiders keep finding innovative and embarrassing ways to lose this season, and their latest act was by far the worst yet.An utter humiliation at the hands of the mediocre Seattle Seahawks at Wembley Stadium on Sunday night sent the Raiders to 1-5, their 27-3 blowout defeat the latest page in a book that keeps getting worse and worse.With the Raiders entering the bye week before facing the 1-5 Indianapolis Colts at home, here is your Week 6 report card. Passing game: …
SANTA CLARA — Running back Jerick McKinnon experienced another setback with his reconstructed right knee and his 49ers future is up in the air, general manager John Lynch said Wednesday on KNBR 680-AM.If McKinnon’s comeback is stalled again, the 49ers could put him on injured reserve, as was the case a year ago when he tore his anterior cruciate ligament eight days before the season opener. For him to be eligible to return as a short-term, injured reserve candidate, he’d first have to make …
Mobile use is soaring across the Africancontinent, with every second person nowreachable by phone.(Image: MediaClubSouthAfrica.com. Formore free photos, visit the image library) MEDIA CONTACTS • Thecla MbongueResearch analyst, Informa TM+44 20 7017 5533 RELATED ARTICLES• Mobile networks in tower-sharing deal• High-speed internet from Cell C• Cheaper internet for South Africa• MTN launches R8.1bn shares scheme• Telkom mobile to launch soonWilma den HartighAfrica is claiming its place at the forefront of telecommunications.According to new research by Informa Telecoms & Media, the continent has exceeded the 500-million mark for active mobile subscriptions. Every second person living on the African continent can now be contacted by phone.A fast-growing mobile regionAccording to Informa analyst Thecla Mbongue, these figures mainly show growth in the use of mobile phones used for basic voice telephony. Data connections represented about 8% of total subscriptions in 2010. Mbongue says that the African continent represents 10% of global mobile subscriptions.There are still many opportunities in the mobile market for investors in growth areas such as the voice segment in under-penetrated markets, and the non-voice segments with mobile broadband and mobile money services. Mbongue says that these services would apply to both business and private markets.She says that, to some degree, high computer prices still restrict the use of mobile broadband services to the top end residential and business segment.The mobile money service targets the mass market, as this is mainly unbanked. She says that the difference between mobile money and Internet banking is that customers do not need a bank account to access the former. Access is possible via the menu on a mobile phone.“Mobile money services make it possible for customers to send and receive even very small amounts, and sometimes it also enables them to pay for basic services such as utility bills and school fees,” says Mbongue. By 2014 the number of mobile money users in Africa will have risen to almost 360-million.South Africa’s MTN, France Telecom (Orange), India’s Bharti Airtel, Vodafone/Vodacom and UAE based Etisalat have all expressed interest in gaining a bigger footing in the African mobile market.Rapid growth“The expansion of networks and the decreasing price of handsets are key drivers to more people using mobile phones,” Mbongue says. The Informa report also says that the landing of new submarine cables on the east and west coasts of Africa over the past 18 months is boosting the continent’s international connectivity. It has also created more possibilities for data services.According to an Ernst & Young telecommunications study titled Africa Connected: A telecommunications growth story, many operators and governments have also embarked on projects to build national and metropolitan fibre networks to enable easy access to new services.The findings of Ernst & Young’s research, conducted in the third quarter of 2008, are based on interviews with 28 senior role-players in the African telecommunications industries. The telecommunications study shows that from 2002, the French telecommunications market grew at a compound annual growth rate of 7.5% and the Brazilian market at 28%. In comparison, the African market experienced 49.3% growth.Growth in the African economy, fuelled by a commodities boom and increased liberalisation, is believed to be the main reason for the increase. The Ernst & Young study foresees that the African telecommunications market will grow faster than any other region in the next three to five years.Data market set to soarErnst & Young also expects data to become a revenue generator in Africa, even though voice services are likely to remain the largest contributor to operator revenues in the medium term.The provision of internet access is a big market, but Mbongue says much work still needs to be done to expand it. She says that at the beginning of 2010, the rate of household broadband access in Africa was only 2.5%. The Informa report findings predict that by 2015, there will be 265-million mobile broadband subscriptions in Africa – a significant increase from the current figure of about 12-million.The Ernst & Young survey indicates that as competition in the mobile market escalates, innovation and operational efficiency will become more important. It also appears that even with the worldwide recession, new licenses were still being issued and mergers and acquisitions were still taking place in Africa in the past year.Nomalanga Nkosi, GM for Business Marketing at MTN Business, says that mobile subscriptions are changing the way business works.“Gone are the days when mobile subscriptions were only used to receive and make calls,” she says.Today, mobility is one of the fastest growing trends in business. Many companies have become more aware of the business value that mobile technology brings in terms of productivity, integration and return on investment.“It is easy to see why investments in mobile applications and technologies will increase through 2011, as organisations begin to ramp up both business-to-employee and business-to-consumer mobile spending,” Nkosi says.In the next five years Informa expects the strongest growth rates in mobile subscriptions in East and Central Africa. Mobile subscription numbers in Ethiopia, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea and Madagascar are likely to more than double by 2015.Africa still a challenging environmentTelephony services are now widely available in Africa, but Mbongue says that there are still many more markets to develop. For example, in rural areas the rate of mobile access is less than 10%.Operators still face many challenges such as regulatory and political uncertainty. Ernst & Young’s study says there is a big need for regulatory independence. Although political stability in Africa has largely improved, operators are cautious of government interference in the regulatory process.The absence of reliable infrastructure such as power is another concern. Operators also find it difficult to draw the right candidates to fill important technical and management positions, and retain this talent. However, findings suggest that this challenge is not seen as unique to African operators.Operators also have to keep in mind that African markets are at different stages of economic, social and telecommunications development. Only six countries – Libya, Tunisia, Algeria, Gabon, Seychelles and South Africa – have penetration levels of more than 80%, while 24 countries fall below the 20% penetration mark and 17 have mobile penetration levels of less than 10%.Demographics also play a role. Countries such as Seychelles and Gabon, with penetration rates of 108% and 91% respectively, have smaller populations and higher mobile uptake levels. Larger countries such as Nigeria, with a population of almost 150-million people, should take longer to reach high penetration levels.The role of SMSShort-format text messages have become part of our day-to-day lives, but the experts say that it is no longer only a means to keep in touch with friends and family. Dr Pieter Streicher, MD of BulkSMS.com, says short message services (SMS) are also taking on a new role and improving communication globally. These days, SMS is used in crime fighting, reporting on political unrest and weather reports.Streicher says figures released earlier this year by former Nokia executive and mobile expert Tomi Ahonen show that 53% of the world’s population and 78% of the world’s mobile phone users send and receive SMSs.“If you look at the overall number of users, SMS eclipses email by 2.6 times, despite email having been around for 39 years and SMS for only 17,” says Clay Shirky, a respected digital media commentator.Thanks to SMS, farmers in rural Kenya can obtain market prices for their goods using their mobiles. This allows them to decide beforehand which market will be paying more for their produce. Shirky says that this is a good example of how access to information via SMS is helping previously economically disadvantaged people.Increased access to mobile phones in Africa has made it possible for more people to make use of SMS services. He says a lack of other communication channels such as fixed lines and email has led to the rapid adoption of SMS in Africa and other third world regions. The other advantage of SMS is that it is user friendly, readily available, and relatively inexpensive.“It isn’t surprising, then, that many grassroot innovations, and clever ideas that the phone manufacturers almost certainly never dreamt of, take place in Africa,” he says in a report. These days, mobile phone users can even get SMS reminders to take anti-retrovirals and other important medication.Africa is on its way to becoming a success story in all aspects of telecommunications. The Ernst & Young study reports that there are many expectations and the continent is set to become a central focus of global telecommunications operators and vendors in the next five years. The good news is that Africa is shaking off its reputation as a market only for brave investors, to being seen as a region open for business and investment.• Mobile networks in tower-sharing deal
2 April 2014The South African Revenue Service (Sars) collected R899.7-billion in taxes for 2013/14, R0.7-billion more than the revised estimate of R895-billion in the 2014 Budget.Releasing the revenue service’s preliminary tax collection results in Pretoria on Tuesday, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan said that despite the global economic turmoil which had tested the country’s finances, tax collection remained buoyant.“The strength of our government finances is well illustrated by our past performance, including what we are announcing today. We have proven our ability to take tough decisions to promote service delivery while safe-guarding fiscal sustainability.”Gordhan attributed the strong results to an increase in personal income tax and corporate income tax collections compared to the previous fiscal year.Personal income tax collections were R310.5-billion, which was R778-million (0.3%) above the revised estimate in the 2014 Budget of R309.7-billion and 12.2% higher than the R276.7-billion outcome of the previous year.Corporate tax collections went up to R179.9-billion, 0.7% above the revised estimate of R178.7-billion in the 2014 Budget.“The depreciation of the rand – losing 17.5% of its value against the US dollar in 2013 – improved trade-related taxes and corporate income tax of companies with offshore earnings,” Gordhan said, adding that the slow recovery of corporate income tax following the 2008-09 financial crisis had accelerated this year thanks to higher export earningsOther factors driving revenue included a growth in the mining and manufacturing sectors in the 4th quarter of 2013, above-inflation wage settlements sustaining personal income tax, and strong imports advancing customs revenue.Value-added tax (VAT) collection, however, recorded a decrease. VAT collections were R237.7-billion, R1.6-billion lower than the revised estimate of R239.3-billion in the 2014 Budget.Gordhan said that Sars would continue to build on the progress of the past 20 years to improve tax compliance levels.“Over two decades, South Africa has built a progressive tax system. Our tax policy framework has proven to be resilient during the global economic turmoil that has tested South Africa’s public finances, its economic policy framework and its regulatory environment over the past five year.“The revenue authority was transformed and the tax base was broadened. We are leaving the next administration with a solid foundation – a resilient revenue collection system and an effective approach to expenditure management.”SAinfo reporter and SAnews.gov.za
Brand South Africa is at the 45th World Economic Forum in the Swiss town of Davos from 21 to 24 January 2015 to share that message that South Africa is a globally competitive nation, an integral part of a rising Africa, and open for business. Open for businessAt the 2015 WEF annual meeting in Davos, Team South Africa will be showcasing eight major economic sectors that are open for business to international investors. More >Click on an image for a larger version.MINING AND BENEFICIATIONAGROPROCESSINGINDUSTRIAL INFRASTRUCTURETOURISMHEALTHCAREMANUFACTURINGINFORMATION & COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGYFORESTRY & RELATED PRODUCTS Introducing WEF Davos 2015South Africa to showcase its success at Davos15 January 2015 – President Jacob Zuma will be heading up the high-level South African delegation of cabinet ministers and business leaders attending the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, from 21 to 24 January, the Presidency said on Wednesday. More > South Africa’s education system critical to competitiveness15 January 2015 – As Team South Africa prepares to showcase the country’s successes at the World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland, we must remember that a quality education for young people is critical to our global competitiveness, writes Brand South Africa CEO Miller Matola. More >A plan to move South Africa forward15 January 2015 – On the eve of the World Economic Forum at Davos, South Africa grapples with three challenges in building an equal society: high unemployment, poverty and inequality. A way forward is in infrastructure investment, considered the most direct way to creating skilled, high-paying jobs. More > Four key issues on the agenda for WEF Davos 201515 January 2015 – The world is changing at a breathtaking pace. In the past year, it seems to have become a darker place, marked by deepening geopolitical fault-lines which jeopardise the era of economic expansion, integration and partnership that began with the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989. More >Gallery: Nelson Mandela at Davos12 January 2015 – The World Economic Forum has unearthed historic photographs of Nelson Mandela attending the annual meetings in Davos in 1992, two years before he became South Africa’s first democratically elected president, and in 1999, the final year of his presidency. More >
Former Trinamool Congress leader and ex-Mayor Sovan Chatterjee delivered a new twist in Bengal politics on Tuesday when he visited Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on the occasion of Bhai Phonta. Mr. Chatterjee had recently joined the BJP and the decision to meet Ms. Banerjee embarrassed the top BJP leaders.“Anyone can meet any other person during an auspicious occasion. He has been visiting her [Ms. Banerjee] for several years during Bhai Phonta. It is not an issue,” said BJP State president Dilip Ghosh.Ms. Banerjee or Mr. Chatterjee did not comment about the visit.
About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say Watford manager Sanchez Flores explains Welbeck setbackby Paul Vegas4 days agoSend to a friendShare the loveWatford manager Quique Sanchez Flores says Danny Welbeck injured his ankle and not his hamstring.The forward went down clutching his hamstring with barely a minute on the clock and was eventually substituted in Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Tottenham.Sanchez Flores said: “I was talking about him in the last press conference about how he’s fighting with this injury.”We know he’s happy to be with us, with the team. During the week he was good.”He didn’t complain about anything and our feeling with him was really good, but the ankle is uncomfortable.”
INDIANAPOLIS – APRIL 03: Head coach Mike Krzyzewski of the Duke Blue Devils gestures as he coaches in the first half against the West Virginia Mountaineers during the National Semifinal game of the 2010 NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Championship at Lucas Oil Stadium on April 3, 2010 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)No. 4 Duke defeated Georgia Tech 72-66 at home last night. The victory gave Blue Devils head coach Mike Krzyzewski his 423rd career ACC victory, surpassing Dean Smith for the most all-time. After the game, Krzyzewski addressed the crowd as part of a ceremony honoring his 1,000th-career win, which came against St. John’s on Jan. 25. As part of the tribute, the Duke players all wore “Coach 1K” shirts, with the number 1 embedded as part of the letter K. Krzyzewski touched on both milestones during his time on the mic, and thanked the Cameron crowd for its support. There might not be any more coach in American more synonymous with his program than Krzyzewski is with Duke basketball. Pretty cool moment.
NEW YORK, N.Y. – During advertising’s biggest showcase, tame humour and messages about social causes ruled the day. Slapstick humour, sexual innuendo and chest thumping patriotic messages were, for the most part, nowhere in sight. After a divisive year, advertisers during the Big Game worked overtime to win over audiences with messages that entertained and strove not to offend.Here’s a look at the winners and losers during the biggest advertising showcase of the year.WINNERSAmazonAn Amazon ad showcased different celebrities including actress Rebel Wilson, actor Anthony Hopkins, singer Cardi B and chef Gordon Ramsay subbing in as the voice of Amazon’s Alexa voice assistant.BudweiserBudweiser , as always the largest advertiser during the game, eschewed the usual puppies and Clydesdales to showcase employees that send water to places in need.NFLThe NFL scored with a charmer that showed New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning and wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. performing the choreography from the movie “Dirty Dancing” — complete with their version of Patrick Swayze’s iconic lift of Jennifer Grey.PepsiCoPepsico’s brands Mountain Dew Ice and Doritos Blaze staged an epic rap lip sync battle between actors Morgan Freeman and Peter Dinklage, who respectively synced to Missy Elliott and Busta Rhymes.Rocket Mortgage by Quicken LoansComedian Keegan Michael-Key cut through complex jargon to put things plainly in a humorous ad for Rocket Mortgage by Quicken Loans. When a restaurant patron is confused by a “beef-protein gluten-free pate,” Michael-Key explains: “It’s a burrito, filled with plants pretending to be meat.”TideTide took a novel approach with “Stranger Things” actor David Harbor in ads that poked fun at typical Super Bowl commercials. Harbour popped up in familiar-looking ads that appeared to be about different products: a car, an insurance company, jewelry and Old Spice (another P&G product). The twist? They’re really all Tide ads, because there are no stains on anyone’s clothing.LOSERSCoca-ColaDiet Coke attempted to be quirky by showcasing a woman awkwardly dancing to a rap song, but it garnered a lot of negative comments on social media when the approach came off more weird than quirky.“It has no clear message and it’s not really interesting,” said Kimberly Whitler, a marketing professor at the University of Virginia.Fiat Chrysler’s Ram TrucksRam trucks used a speech by Martin Luther King, Jr., to illustrate its motto, “Built to Serve.” The ad, timed to the 50th anniversary of the speech, showed people doing good deeds. But some thought the connection to the civil rights hero was too tenuous.“Ram is being heavily criticized for its spot,” said Tim Calkins, marketing professor at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern. “The use of MLK to promote Ram trucks strikes many people are crass and inappropriate.”TurboTaxThe tax preparer used a monster under the bed to allude to people’s fears about doing their taxes. But some thought that the ad was too scary during a game that a lot of children were watching.“The goal may be to introduce a new trade character that can build awareness, as in the Mucinex Man. However, this ad was a complete disaster,” Villanova University marketing professor Charles Taylor said.___Eds: An earlier version of this story mistakenly referred to the brand Ram trucks, which is no longer affiliated with the Dodge brand.