Sign up for our COVID-19 newsletter to stay up-to-date on the latest coronavirus news throughout New York No, 9 cats and a dog is not the name of a new sitcom (although maybe it should be), it is the theme for this week’s adoption column. It’s cuteness overload here, so good luck choosing just one to adopt!DillAvailable for adoption at the Town of Hempstead Animal Shelter:Dill is a must meet. This little 1-year-old FIV+ positive boy is so sweet, loves other cats and is a total purring machine! He is currently living in the shelter’s FIV cattery with multiple other cats and while he enjoys himself there, everyone knows a forever home is a much better place for a sweet kitty. Don’t let the FIV stand in your way from getting the best cat — cats with FIV live long and happy lives!If you are interested in adopting Dill, call 516-785-5220, visit 3320 Beltagh Ave. in Wantagh or email [email protected] PepeAvailable for adoption at the Town of Huntington Cat Shelter:Pepe is a sweet senior kitty who arrived at the Little Shelter declawed. He is an affectionate cat that walks right up to visitors asking for attention. Pepe has spent his entire life in a home until his owner could no longer take care of him. Pepe likes to cuddle and would be great in a quiet home with someone he can really bond with.Pepe is currently a resident at the Town of Huntington Cat Shelter (operated by Little Shelter) located at 104 Deposit Rd. in East Northport. Call 631-651-9788 for more information.PilatosAvailable for adoption at Little Shelter:Pilatos could be the coolest dog you’ll ever meet. He is a 1-year-old Labrador/Chihuahua mix with a lot of spunk! He loves to play with toys and is currently learning how to fetch.He’s a good boy who always wants to be the center of your attention and never leave your side. He is ready to start obedience classes to learn how to always put his best paw forward. Pilatos is a small dog with a big personality who is always ready to go on his next adventure and is never too tired to have some fun. HoneyHoney is an all-around fun cat who always get the staff laughing! She gives the “will you pet me” face, but the funny thing is, when you pet her, she starts to grumble and growl instead of purr!It’s not a threat, she loves getting her chin scratched, it’s just that she’s got the communication thing a little backwards. Honey is a cat that will keep you entertained with silly antics all day long. She likes other cats and loves older children, making her a good candidate for almost any household!CatrinaCatrina comes from a large family of felines and is used to a home with other animals (preferably cats).She’s a little shy, but once she gets to know you, she’s the ultimate lap cat. She loves to chase the un-catchable laser pointer but also enjoys lounging around for hours in the window sill (and does a very good job of keeping away the bugs). Catrina would make a great addition to any family, so be sure to scoop her up before some else does!For more information about adopting Pilatos, Honey and Catrina, contact Little AnimalRescue Adoption Center at 33 Warner Rd. in Huntington, 631-368-8770.RiverAvailable for adoption at North Shore Animal League America in Port Washington:River is one lucky black cat! Found by a local rescue hero, he was scooped up off the streets and brought to North Shore’s Adoption Center, where their medical team discovered a serious heart ailment.But not to worry, River is back on track with a great medical plan! To help build River’s confidence, he is now in a foster home thriving, which means he’s ready to find a forever home. This young boy does well with other pets and children 12+ in age.Did you know that black pets are the most overlooked at shelters, but the most over-loved at home? I can vouch for that! Treat yourself to a new best friend by adopting sweet River today!Contact [email protected] for more information about adopting River today!Available for adoption at Fur Friends in Need:Yes folks, it’s still kitten season, and there’s no shortage of kitties that are in desperate need of a permanent home. There are four very cute kittens (two boys and two girls) that will be available for adoption in about three weeks. If your looking to open your home to an adorable sweet kitten (or four), contact Fur Friends in Need today at furfriendsinneed.comAs always, thanks for reading and please remember to always adopt, never shop…pass it on!
Orioles executive vice president and general manager Mike Elias told The Baltimore Sun he’s interviewed six managerial candidates, but the team wants to be as “deliberate as possible with a hire this big.”Despite the fact the Orioles are at the winter meetings without a manager, Elias says he won’t rush the process of replacing Buck Showalter, who was fired after a 47-115 season. “It’s not so important that I would fast-forward the hiring process beyond what it should entail, just to get this person here in time for these meetings,” Elias told The Sun.Elias did not divulge the identities of the six candidates, but according to The Sun and other sources, the candidates include four bench coaches, in Brandon Hyde (Cubs), Chip Hale (Nationals), Mike Redmond (Rockies) and Manny Acta (Mariners), along with Diamondbacks vice president of player development Mike Bell and Royals quality control/catching coach Pedro Grifol.Acta has six seasons of managerial experience, with the Indians and Nationals, while Hale (two seasons with the Diamondbacks) and Redmond (three years with the Marlins) also have experience leading a club. “I’m very confident that our manager will come from the list of candidates that we’ve interviewed so far,” Elias told The Sun. “I’m not sure that there will be a second in-person interview round. We spent plenty of time with these people, and we’ve done a lot of phone work, and we’re also cognizant to the fact that we’re a little pressed for time and we want to be courteous to other teams around the league who are trying to get their staffs set, and we also have a major league staff to hire subsequent to this hire.”Being as expeditious and deliberate as possible with a hire this big.”
A dozen leading golfers will represent England in championships on three continents in the New Year. Four players will tour Australia in January and early February: Adam Chapman of Cumbria (pictured top), Bradley Moore of Derbyshire, Jonathan Thomson of Yorkshire and Ashton Turner of Lincolnshire. Four will play in the South American Amateur in January: Bronte Law of Cheshire, Meghan MacLaren of Northamptonshire, James Allan of Essex and Marco Penge of Sussex. Four will tour South Africa in late January and February: Jamie Bower of Yorkshire, Paul Kinnear of Lancashire, Alfie Plant of Kent and Sean Towndrow of Lancashire. Australia Tour The players will take part in four events, with the exception of Moore, who misses the first championship due to prior commitments. These are: Australian Master of the Amateurs Championship, 6-9 January at Royal Melbourne Golf Club. Australian Men’s Amateur, 12-17 January at the Metropolitan and Kingswood Golf Clubs, Victoria. Lake Macquarie Amateur, 21-24 January at Belmont Golf Club, New South Wales. The 2014 title was won by Northamptonshire’s Ryan Evans. New South Wales Amateur, Riverside Oaks and Lynwood Golf Clubs, strokeplay 27-29 January; matchplay 31 Jan-2 Feb. This year’s championship was won by Lancashire’s Paul Howard. The players are all members of the England Golf men’s squad. Adam Chapman (Windermere) is the North of England champion; Bradley Moore (Kedleston Park) won the English U18 boys’ championship for the Carris Trophy; Jonathan Thomson (Lindrick) tied fourth in the European Amateur; Ashton Turner (Kenwick Park) won the Darwin Salver. South American Amateur The 72-hole championship takes place at Lima Golf Club, Peru, from 21-24 January. England has a good record in this event with wins by Callum Shinkwin from Hertfordshire in 2013 and Lancashire’s Paul Howard in 2014. The players are: Bronte Law, pictured, (Bramhall), the world’s fifth ranked woman amateur and the English champion; Meghan MacLaren (Wellingborough), the 2014 British stroke play champion; James Allan (Chelmsford), the runner-up on the 2015 England men’s Order of Merit; Marco Penge (Golf at Goodwood), winner of the England boys’ Order of Merit having won two junior titles and the Scottish men’s stroke play championship. South Africa Tour The quartet will contest six championships: Gauteng North Stroke Play, 28-30 January at Irene Golf Club. Toby Tree of Sussex won this title in 2012 and 2013. South African Stroke Play, 2-5 February at Blue Valley Golf Club. African Open, 10-13 February at Leopard Creek Golf Club. Southern Cape Open Stroke Play, 18-20 February at Mossel Bay Golf Club. Cape Province Open, 23-25 February at Kingswood Golf Estate. South African Amateur, 28 Feb-4 Mar at George Golf Club. The players, all England internationals, are: Jamie Bower, pictured, (Meltham), a semi-finalist in the English amateur who tied sixth in the European amateur; Paul Kinnear (Formby), who played in The Open at St Andrews and was third in the Brabazon Trophy; Alfie Plant (Sundridge Park), who was runner-up in the English amateur and the Grand Prix de Chiberta in France; Sean Towndrow (Southport & Ainsdale), who helped England beat Spain in the 2015 international and was 10th in the Brabazon Trophy. All images © Leaderboard Photography 25 Nov 2015 England golfers to compete on three continents
Durban’s Moses Mabhida stadium ishailed as a masterpiece of designand technology. (Image: MediaClubsouthafrica.com. For more free photos, visit the image library) MEDIA CONTACTS • Manola SanchezWBS communications director+27 11 717 3615RELATED ARTICLES • 2010 media hub at Nasrec • New infrastructure for World Cup • Better broadband for Africa • World Cup ticket sales soarJanine ErasmusAlthough the 2010 Fifa World Cup has come to an end, experts say the spirit of it will endure in the sporting achievements and many humanitarian initiatives which have sprung up around it, and the lasting improvements in infrastructure and technology.This is the view of a number of academics and IT specialists, who gathered at the Wits Business School (WBS) in Johannesburg in July to discuss relevant aspects of the World Cup legacy. The meeting was held under the auspices of the WBS Strategic Management of Innovation Seminar Series in conjunction with the Joburg Centre for Software Engineering (JCSE).Titled 2010 Fifa World Cup: What does it mean for South Africa’s innovation and capability building?, the panel featured Nhlanhla Mabaso, the director of Computer and Network Services at Wits; Adrian Schofield, JCSE’s Applied Business Unit manager; Mayan Mathen, CTO of Dimension Data; and Gillian Saunders of specialist advisory company Grant Thornton.Introducing the panel, organisational behaviour specialist Dr Wendy Ngoma, acting WBS head, said that innovation brings out the best in people who care enough to want to change the status quo.Hosting the World Cup called for much of that attitude in order to meet with Fifa’s exacting specifications – but it’s also an approach that will enable South Africa to reap the benefits of its multi-billion-rand investment in years to come.Caribbean-born Prof Gillian Marcelle, head of strategy and innovation at WBS, chaired the panel. She explained that the Strategic Management of Innovation seminar series group meets every two months to discuss ways of getting innovative ideas out to the public. Typical topics include biotechnology, infrastructure and entrepreneurship.“It’s a completely open group and everybody is welcome to join us,” said Marcelle. “You just have to have an interest in innovation.”The experts gave their views on how the World Cup has benefited South Africa in terms of the many improvements in infrastructure and technological systems, and how these improvements could be efficiently used in the future.Maximising opportunities“South Africa has once again demonstrated its ability to pull off the big one,” said Schofield. “Why can’t we achieve this level of success in areas such as education, security, health or job creation? Perhaps the real innovation lies in motivating government processes to achieve these outcomes.”As proof of South Africa’s innovative skills, Schofield mentioned the design of new stadiums and the communications infrastructure that connects the magnificent buildings, Fifa offices, and broadcasters to the impressive International Broadcast Centre (IBC) and IT Control Centre in Johannesburg.“Yes, it was a Fifa requirement, but South Africa put it together,” said Schofield, adding that it was unfortunate that Fifa saw fit to import much of the expertise. “But I hope that our local industry has watched and learned all that it could. For instance, with high-definition and 3D television, we should now be thinking not only of manufacturing the hardware, but of developing suitable content.”The one area where technology failed, said Schofield, was in the ticketing system, the complexity of which was ill-suited to Africa, and was not adapted by Fifa until it was almost too late. “It was a good opportunity for local ticketing companies, but sadly they missed out.”Schofield discussed ways in which all this new technology can be put to good use, but added that it would require some imagination. “The IBC broadband infrastructure cannot be wasted, and it would be a great idea to build a hi-tech campus on that site, once the moveable equipment has been taken away.”Schofield also described the fan park sites as areas with great potential for outdoor entertainment venues and cinemas, or even places where communities can gather to learn more about important government programmes.The stadiums present another challenge, he said. With their cutting-edge technology they should not be limited to hosting just rugby and football matches. “We could turn them into support structures for local schools, using them as giant classrooms or extra sports fields.”This is especially fitting, he said, in light of the fact that one of Fifa’s most publicised legacy goals of the tournament is education.“The stadiums also hold great promise as focal points for surrounding communities, by hosting internet cafes or health clinics, for example. We mustn’t starve ourselves of the opportunities presented to us by the World Cup, but rather, turn them to our maximum advantage.”Cutting-edge technology in stadiumsDimension Data’s Mathen shared a few of the World Cup’s highly specialised IT developments with the audience.“Although for me, one of the greatest legacies was in the social aspect,” he said. “I wasn’t too excited until the opening ceremony, but now I value the opportunity to have met so many new people.”The 415 000 jobs created, the cumulative global audience of around 26.9-billion, the boost to South Africa’s economy – while these are all factors that cannot be ignored, said Mathen, there are other aspects that are equally impressive.“The infrastructure development and upgrades to national roads has changed my life. There have been huge improvements made to roads, airports, stadiums and hotels, as well as our communications capability. Emergency services disaster centres in major cities have been upgraded, which allows for a better coordinated effort when it comes to managing disasters.”In terms of safety and security, said Mathen, the South African Police Service created a dedicated 2010 team of 41 000 members, while the police reservist force is to grow from 45 000 to around 100 000.Other safety and security benefits are less noticeable – yet no less significant. “South Africa’s e-border system is one of only three in the world that works on a cloud computing platform. It constantly scans international databases to keep track of potentially undesirable people as they travel.”Mathen said that eThekwini, or Durban, is now a digital city with one of the world’s top fibre-optic cable networks. “The city can now offer smart connect services to small businesses, and runs more efficiently in general.”The recent broadband developments and newly operational undersea cables have opened up tremendous opportunities. “We have great broadband capability – but entrepreneurs now need to come up with ideas to utilise it.”Mathen also mentioned that during the World Cup, South Africa became one of the highest “tweet” sources in the world, referring to the Twitter social network phenomenon. “We averaged around 750 tweets per second, with some 3 500 going out every second during World Cup matches.”He described Johannesburg’s Soccer City as the largest World Cup stadium ever built. “It has 17-million tons of steel and 11-million bricks – all sourced locally. We have thousands of workers now trained in construction skills.”Turning to the Cape Town stadium, the jewel of the city, Mathen talked about the various systems installed in the showpiece to ensure fans’ safety. “It has a facial recognition surveillance system that can send instant alerts to the police if a wanted individual is spotted on the closed circuit television system. The stadium’s electronic ticketing system and intelligent fire management systems are world class. Even the police vehicles have cutting-edge systems that allow them to travel up to 160 kph while doing facial and number-plate recognition.”The Cape Town stadium is also highly energy efficient, he said, and is run by an intelligent building management system.And the expertise gained by South Africans working on these projects has not been wasted. “As a result of the work done during the World Cup, our people have been consulted by agencies working on future events such as the next Fifa World Cup in Brazil in 2014, and the two upcoming Rugby World Cups.”Protecting bordersDoctoral candidate Mabaso talked about other legacy aspects such as improvements to the border control system developed in 1985, and still used successfully today by border officials.“Although improvements have been made over the years, the system received a big jump for 2010,” he said. The new movement control system was responsible for thwarting the plans of a number of identified hooligans, who tried to enter the country during the World Cup.The country also implemented other innovations such as hand-held passport processing devices at international airports, which can service new arrivals while they’re still standing in the queue. These were piloted in South Africa during the 2009 Fifa Confederations Cup.“Other long-term legacy aspects,” he said, “are the development of sustainable technologies, and a boost in confidence in South Africa both internally and externally. There are one or two more negative aspects such as the possibility of white elephants, but these can be overcome with some imagination.”New visitors to South AfricaGillian Saunders talked about tourism aspects of the World Cup, saying that official data would only be released later in the year, but meanwhile the company had projected just under 400 000 World Cup visitors, using ticket sale figures.“We took the number of ticket sales versus the average number of games a visitor would watch, a figure gleaned from previous tournaments, and came to a result of about 373 000 visitors.”The tourism spend, said Saunders, was up by 0.48% compared to normal July figures, and the GDP would benefit by an additional 1.72% in total.“We also can’t ignore the profiling of South Africa on the world stage, helped by the presence of 18 850 media professionals in the country. We’ve benefited from increased national pride and a new can-do attitude, and we’re also seeing more football development as well as football and rugby integration.”The World Cup, said Saunders, would give South Africa the opportunity to grow its event and leisure tourism sector, as the tournament has given the country access to new markets and new countries.“We’ve also broken new ground in cyberspace. We’re the first World Cup to make extensive use of social media,” she said, adding that for the first time Africa is seen internationally as a place with a realistic growth potential.
Every year the Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance assesses the performance of all 54 African countries in categories such as human rights, the rule of law, sustainable economic opportunities and human development.According to Mo Ibrahim, pictured, and his 2017 index of African Governance, South Africa shows signs of bouncing back after a decade-long slump. (Image: Mo Ibrahim Foundation)Brand South Africa today welcomed the results of the 2017 Mo Ibrahim Index of African Governance (IIAG), which saw South Africa retain its rank of 6 of 54 countries assessed in the index.In its 11th iteration, the IIAG is an annual statistical assessment of the quality of governance in every one of the 54 African countries, covering a period of 17 years from 2000. The 2017 IIAG framework has four overarching categories that reflect the foundation’s definition of governance: Safety and Rule of Law; Participation and Human Rights; Sustainable Economic Opportunity; and Human Development.In terms of these pillars, South Africa improved in the indicator of Participation and Human Rights, moving up from position 5/54 to 4/54. As a democratic nation, it is heartening to see South Africa improve its rank. South Africa’s rank in the category of Safety and Rule of Law remains the same as the previous year, at 7/54.The IIAG’s focus on governance is a critical issue, especially in the African and emerging market context. While general governance performance, as outlined in the IIAG results, speak to general state capacity, South Africa also has notable strengths in terms of its corporate governance environment.Commenting on the 2017 IIAG, Brand South Africa’s CEO Dr Kingsley Makhubela said, “This year has been a particularly challenging one for South Africa, with a number of incidents in public administration and the private sector leading to the creation of grounds for improvements in administration. As a consequence of these incidents, whether they involved fraud, improper administration, badly informed managers or failing supervision, corporate governance in the private sector and in the public sector have become subjects that are widely discussed and reported on in the media.“Cultivating [good] governance is high on South Africa’s agenda, which is why authorities across various stakeholder groups are working hard to safeguard and improve governance. It is the responsibility of all stakeholders, including government, business and civil society, to ensure not only that we deliver on our central mandate of providing sound and sustainable initiatives for the country’s economic and social needs, but also that we are well run, and that investments yield the required results that will address unemployment, inequality and poverty in South Africa.”Dr Makhubela added: “Despite improvements in the areas highlighted above, Brand South Africa notes with concern a decrease in the country’s ranking on Sustainable Economic Opportunity from position two to four, and Human Development from position six to eight.“In an increasingly competitive global landscape, the risk of poor governance remains fairly high. We need to look to institutions of governance such as Parliament, the SA Reserve Bank, the Human Rights Commission, the Financial Services Board, the Competition Tribunal, and many more, to obtain insights on how they are all playing their part in ensuring that South Africa’s Constitutional Democracy and Rule of Law continue to demonstrate high levels of resilience, maturity and good governance.”The conversation can be followed at @Brand_SA #CompetitiveSA.