The President, in her recent Annual Message to the Legislature admitted that a paltry (measly, worthless) 25% of government’s purchases come from Liberian-owned businesses. This is, unfortunately, a tacit admission that this government has failed to encourage its own people in business. But there is more to it.However, let us deal first with the government’s own responsibility in the premises–why? Because the government, as in most countries, including the United States, is the biggest employer and contract giver. It is also that ONE BODY that wields ALL the political power in a country. And, just so we know, it is that POWER that can make ANYTHING happen in any country. In other words, it is the government that gets done what it wants done.Daily Observer staff members, and many in the public, have often observed in small, medium-sized or big businesses–that there are always government officials hanging around these businesses—doing what? Begging for favors, or having been summoned to receive a handout or gift.When the Daily Observer got into trouble with a certain major Lebanese businessman in 2007 for exposing the sale of a rotten commodity, we learned that this particular businessman had NEVER visited the Ministry of Commerce. It was, instead, the Ministers of Commerce—in the Samuel Doe, Charles Taylor, National Transitional Government of Liberia (NTGL) regimes–and probably even before–that went to this Lebanese businessman’s office. He did not have to go to the Ministry of Commerce, because there were NO questions, only answers—packaged generously and neatly in brown envelopes, to be picked up by the Ministers themselves–nobody else.But make no mistake! This has been going on for a very long time. That is why Liberia is not yet developed, but backward. The Daily Observer has often told the story of Moshe Meyer, who built the Ducor Hotel. When in 1972 President Tolbert added Tourism to the Ministry of Information, Cultural Affairs and Tourism, the Minister G. Henry Andrews invited tourism developers from around the world to present proposals to develop Liberian tourism. Moshe Meyer returned, with some great proposals. When we recalled that it was he who had built the Ducor, we asked him what had happened? Why had he, instead, developed tourism in La Cote d’Ivoire?Mr. Meyer’s reply: He saw Liberia as the perfect place to launch tourism in West Africa because of her vibrant economy, her rich culture and her unique geographic position, THE Roberts International Airport was where Pan American Airways touched down first in Africa, before going on to any other African capital, including Lagos, Nigeria and Nairobi, Kenya. BUT the problem: After the Ducor was opened, President Tubman sent them to the other government offices to do the follow-up work for Tourism development. But everywhere he and his colleagues went, the officials in charge wanted a cut “up front.” “We didn’t have that kind of money; so when we found out that President Houphouet and his government were serious, we settled in Ivory Coast, built Hotel Ivoire, the Towers and the Ivorian Rivera.”Liberia lost out completely!And we are still losing out, because of our selfishness, corruption and our patent lack of PATRIOTISM and SERIOUSNESS.THE SAME THING IS STILL HAPPENING. It is as though we have learned NOTHING all these five decades. Remember, 1964 was 50 years ago! How long does it take for a people to learn?The foregoing sums up the government side. What about ourselves as ordinary Liberians? Are we different? Or are we just like our past and present officials? How many of us have borrowed from our friends and relatives and refused to pay back? How many of us have borrowed money from banks and failed to pursue our professed businesses, and failed to pay back?The Liberian Business Association (LIBA) and Central Bank Governor J. Mills Jones are among the few who are striving to give Liberians a new opportunity. We are told that so far, the beneficiaries are paying their LIBA debts.Let us pray that this new beginning will make a substantial and sustained difference and that one day, at long last, Liberians will be empowered to take the lead in business in their own country.Part two to follow tomorrow.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
GIPEX 2018– summit hailed a successWith the close of the Guyana International Petroleum Business Summit (GIPEX) 2018 on Friday, the Private Sector Commission (PSC) is vowing to continue pushing for effective local content policies that would benefit all Guyanese.This commitment was made by PSC President, Eddie Boyer, who noted at a press conference that notwithstanding the success of GIPEX, there remained scope for more to be done.The business leader acknowledged the potential need for the private sector to lobby Government to establish a forum where his organisation can better interface with the investors and the regulators.Meanwhile, Guyana Manufacturing and Services Association (GMSA) President Shyam Nokta promised he would facilitate a forum at which the association couldFrom left; GMSA President Shyam Nokta, PSC Chiarman Eddie Boyer, and PSC Executive Ramesh Dookhooupdate its members on the industry.SuccessFollowing on the heels of the PSC, a press conference was held with Guyana Office for Investment (GO-Invest) Chief Executive Officer Owen Verwey expressing optimism that the summit was able to meet its objectives of networking and introducing Guyanese to the industry.He pointed to the turnout, and especially lauded the youths from school, who came to get a glimpse of the oil and gas sector; and he even lauded the offshoot effects on tourism, as nearby hotels were booked out.He was asked directly, however, about the tangible benefits the summit was able to attract — such as the number of joint ventures that were facilitated between foreign and local companies.“I think there was at least one partnership brokered between a Canadian entity and a public relations entity in the area of public relations, marketing, strategicA section of the gathering on the final day of the summitplanning,” the CEO recollected, while noting his reluctance to call names.“There was another in the education sector. That is Nations University and Learnco out of Canada. I know there is another one going on between two entities in the design and feasibility area.“There’s another one going on in the laboratory and medical research-related industries. And I think there’s one, I can’t remember exactly. But I prefer to leave the entities to make their information public.“But generally, there are five that got to an advanced stage in their partnership (negotiations). Those are the known ones,” Verwey said.Verwey also defended the costs attached to securing a delegate spot. A cost of almost US$2,000 was required for a booth at the exhibition. According to Verwey, as the event was intended to be a self-financing venture, there had to be a way to cover the costs.He noted that the United Kingdom-based private company that partnered with them, Valiant Business Media Group, expended thousands of US dollars. Verwey also posited that sometimes it is better to just observe if one cannot afford to take a more active role in such an event.“Sometimes it’s best for you to not come to the table when you’re not ready. But having an awareness of what goes on at the table by being there, for example, was a good (idea),” Verwey stated.“I know that people who did not buy a delegate pass made the effort to network with businesses that were there, so they could meet them offsite to get some of that opportunity. When it comes to the cost, we have to have everyone at the table. But you have to recognise that we have to have everyone that is ready at the table.”On the final day, there were two workshops that covered topics focusing on “Doing Business in the Oil and Gas Sector in Guyana” and “Doing Business in Oil Field Services, Supply Chain and Facilities Management”.The participating entities in the summit included oil giant ExxonMobil, Repsol Exploracion SA, HESS, CNOOC Nexen, CGX Energy Inc, Schlumberger, JHI, GBTI, GTT, Baker Hughes, Siemens, ECO Atlantic, Tiger Tanks, Oceaneering, DAI, EDO, Clariant, TechnipFMC, Scotiabank, Macorp, Bristow, VSH, ERM, and Laparkan.
Donegal News League Cup Group B RESULT:Swilly Rovers 3 (Ryan McDaid, Ronan Curtis, Terence Shiels)Letterkenny Rovers 2 (John Doherty 2) Victory for the Ramelton Rovers in an absorbing five goal thriller at Swilly Park. The home side started the brighter and went close through efforts from Kyle Black and Laurence Toland. They were too get they’re reward for early dominance on twenty minutes after a precise cross from Darren Dunworth was met on the volley by former Letterkenny man Terence Shiels and left Shane O’Gara in the Letterkenny nets with no chance. But just a minute later Letterkenny drew level after a long range free kick from Dale Gorman was deflected into John Doherty’s path and he made no mistake from five yards out. Both teams exchanged half chances for the duration of the first half with Jonathan Minnock going close with a free kick and Keith Hegarty’s looping header ending up on top of the net.Swilly again started the half on the front foot and looked the more likely team to go in front, Kyle Black went close on a couple of occasions with O’Gara pulling off an excellent stop and Minnock denying him on the goal line on another occasion. Keith Hegarty also came to Swilly’s rescue on two occasions with goal line clearences. The game was to have a frenetic last fifteen minutes with Swilly going ahead after good work in the left channel from Michael Mc Hugh and his cross found Ryan Mc Daid unmarked at the back post to tap home from five yards. Letterkenny to their credit responded well and were rewarded on eighty minutes after corner which was cleared initially was returned by Minnock and John Doherty powered a header past the helpless Wade. This was a setback for the home team who would have felt they’d done enough to claim all three points and so piled the pressure on the Letterkenny goal, and on eighty five minutes the referee pointed to the spot after Kieran Gorman was adjudged to have fouled Michael Mc Hugh in the box and up stepped young starlet Ronan Curtis who after having his initial effort well saved dispatched the rebound to net to the delight of the large home following. The drama wasn’t quite over yet after Wade received his marching orders for two yellow cards, the first of which for time wasting and the latter for apparent dissent much to his dismay and that of home crowd who felt it quite harsh. Four minutes of injury time were added and the Swilly rearguard had too with stand a barrage of long balls into box as Letterkenny searched for an equaliser but they did so and held out for a victory which keeps this league cup group very much alive and down for decision on the third round of games. John Doherty’s brace and all round performance gets him the nod for Letterkenny’s best and his opposite in the Swilly midfield Keith Hegarty had and outstanding game although not too much fault could be found with any of the men in red. Encouraging result for the home team and news just filtering through of a Van Persie hat-trick meant this PRO had a Monday night only Carlsberg could make. Paul McGovern LEAGUE CUP MATCH REPORT: SWILLY WIN THE BATTLE OF THE ROVERS was last modified: April 23rd, 2013 by BrendaShare 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:LEAGUE CUP MATCH REPORT: SWILLY WIN THE BATTLE OF THE ROVERSLEAGUE CUP: SWILLY WIN THE BATTLE OF THE ROVERS