Ramjattan ordered to meet with experts

first_img…as he staggers to find solution for prison woesIn response to the recent incidents within the local prison system, Public Security Minister Khemraj Ramjattan has met with a team of persons with expertise to discuss possible solutions to address the issues facing the Guyana Prisons Service (GPS).Public Security Minister Khemraj RamjattanThis was revealed by Minister of State Joseph Harmon on Friday morning at this week’s post-Cabinet press briefing.“The Minister has been asked to convene a special team of officers and technical persons who have an understanding of the prison system to meet with him and to advise on further steps to be taken,” the State Minister said.When contacted later on Friday, Minister Ramjattan would only confirm that the meeting did happen, noting that he could not disclose what was discussed or whom he had met with. However, <<<<>>>> understands that certain recommendations were presented to the Public Security Minister during the meeting.On Monday morning, three inmates from the Lusignan Penitentiary, one of whom has since been recaptured, scaled the fence of the Holding Bay area and escaped. Later that night, several inmates at the facility kicked up a riot over the food they were served and in retaliation, ranks opened fire on them resulting in at least 10 of them being injured.At a press conference following these incidents, Minister Ramjattan lamented that he does not know what else can be done to address the troubles within the prisons system, describing it as an extraordinarily difficult circumstance.“I don’t have any other suggestions… for their security, for the citizens’ security as to what we can do there… So look, the thing gives me headache every night,” the Public Security Minister asserted.He went on to disclose that the requests made to various international agencies for funding to address the state of affairs within the prison system have been rejected and so now the only solution would be to await money Guyana will earn from oil production in two years’ time.With overcrowding being a major issue in local prisons, the troubles of the system worsened during the last three years. In March 2016, seventeen inmates were killed and several others injured after they set fire inside one of the holding areas in the Camp Street Prison.The situation took a turn for the worst in July last year after a jailbreak and fire which completed destroyed the Camp Street penitentiary, leaving just one concrete building which was recently built standing in the compound.Following that 2017 incident, over 1000 prisoners housed at the Georgetown penitentiary were displaced. While some were moved to the Mazaruni Prison, Region Seven (Cuyuni-Mazaruni) or granted early release or bail, others remained at the Lusignan Prison under strained circumstances.There are currently some 558 inmates at the East Coast of Demerara penitentiary.According to Minister Harmon, at Friday’s post-Cabinet press briefing, they have encountered two sets of issues facing the prison system; one of which has to do with the operation of the facilities and as such, clear directions were given to acting Prisons Director Gladwin Samuels to address these matters.“Interviews with the prisoners actually brought out the questions of the meals, accommodation, water and sanitary facilities… So we did express our concerns that those issues which are operational in nature must be addressed by the Director of Prisons and his officers. Also, the fact that the officers should, on a regular basis, interact with those prisoners who are there to find out whether in fact there are issues which are brewing and so we instructed that that also be done,” he stated.The other set of issues had to do with a higher level of strategic intervention. This, Minister Harmon noted, is being addressed with the expansion of the prisons’ capacity. Currently, works are ongoing to expand the Mazaruni Prison into a state-of-the art facility to accommodate an additional 400 inmates, while a new holding facility is also being constructed at Camp Street.last_img read more

Hannah Storm Andrea Kremer Lead Football Fans to New Frontier Via Amazon

first_imgHannah Storm knows football fans have to take an extra step to listen to her and Andrea Kremer broadcast “Thursday Night Football.” “It is your choice,” she told viewers during last week’s game between the Denver Broncos and the Arizona Cardinals.You won’t find the duo holding forth on Fox, which owns TV rights to the NFL’s Thursday-night showcase.  To get to them, a sports aficionado must subscribe to Amazon Prime, then opt not only to stream each week’s contest, but also toggle the audio selection to “Storm-Kremer” rather than sticking with the default Fox feed.The results can be astonishing. Where are the deep male tones of a team like Fox’s Joe Buck and Troy Aikman or NBC’s Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth? Never before in the history of NFL broadcasting has an all-female team called TV games.  On other media outlets, female sportscasters such as Michele Tafoya or Lisa Salters work the sidelines for NBC or ESPN.  Storm and Kremer gather each Thursday night for Amazon at a studio in Stamford, Conn, relaying their take on a match between the Los Angeles Rams and the Minnesota Vikings or the Philadelphia Eagles and the New York Giants. Kremer and Storm aren’t simply trying to reach U.S. football fans. Their broadcast can stream in more than 200 different countries and territories around the world. With that in mind, they believe there’s room to dive in on certain elements of play important to each game, rather than feeling they have to be tied to whatever image Fox is putting up on the feed. “We want to experience what it is, which is not in any way dumbing it down. It’s just expanding things,” says Kremer.  “We are not going to do traditional X’s and O’s and analysis,” says Storm, “because we might be drilling deep into a subject.”The two found Amazon’s idea impossible to resist.  Executives from the e-retailing giant approached Octagon, the Interpublic Group-owned sports-and-entertainment agency that represents both sportscasters, and their agent Phil de Picciotto, about working with them. They spoke with Jason Weichelt, a live events production executive from Amazon, and liked the fact that the company wanted to work with them because of their experience, not because it wanted female sportscasters.“We thought that took it from a realm of ‘Yeah, we are just looking for a female broadcast booth,’ into the realm of ‘We want your specific voices – yours and Andrea’s,’” says Storm.   “This wasn’t a gimmick. That was really critical.”They have known each other for years, but never worked together. Now, they have the chance to change perceptions of how live sports are handled. If their football talk finds fans, other media companies may want to try similar arrangements. Kremer says she and Storm are focused on using their experience to bring out the best in the games. Their knowledge, she says, is what fans really want.  “You may choose that you don’t care to listen to women,” she says, “but you cannot besmirch our accomplishments.” Popular on Variety The two veteran sportscasters know they represent something different.  “We are doing something new. Are we taking a risk? Absolutely,” says Kremer, known for her work on NFL Network and HBO, among other places.  “Someone had to be first,” says Storm, a veteran of NBC Sports, CBS News and ESPN. “Our hope is other people will see it as maybe a path they would want to follow.”Amazon declined to offer statistics on how many people are tuning in to listen to Kremer and Storm, but their assignment is viewed in some circles as seismic. “This is part of the social revolution,” says Dan Lebowitz, executive director of the Center for the Study of Sport in Society at Northeastern University. In 1978, he says, female sports journalists had to go to court to get access to interview athletes in team locker rooms like their male counterparts. Now, he suggests, women are an integral part of the NFL’s economics. “The largest growth in their fan base is women,” he notes.Amazon’s choice shows media outlets working to curry a younger audience for whom old programming norms are no longer relevant, says  David Carter, executive director of the Sports Business Institute at University of Southern California’s Marshall School of Business  “At this point viewers, regardless of platform, want reliability and credibility when it comes to being able to watch the game and gather insight from on-air talent,” he says. “Gender seems to have largely faded as an issue impacting most viewers’ decisions, especially among younger viewers for whom female broadcasters have always been a part of the landscape. It is all about the ability to distribute content seamlessly and have it described professionally.” Other places are testing new concepts, including NBC’s “Today,” which now relies on the team of Savannah Guthrie and Hoda Kotb – the first time the NBC morning mainstay has relied on two female co-anchors. ×Actors Reveal Their Favorite Disney PrincessesSeveral actors, like Daisy Ridley, Awkwafina, Jeff Goldblum and Gina Rodriguez, reveal their favorite Disney princesses. Rapunzel, Mulan, Ariel,Tiana, Sleeping Beauty and Jasmine all got some love from the Disney stars.More VideosVolume 0%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard Shortcutsplay/pauseincrease volumedecrease volumeseek forwardsseek backwardstoggle captionstoggle fullscreenmute/unmuteseek to %SPACE↑↓→←cfm0-9Next UpJennifer Lopez Shares How She Became a Mogul04:350.5x1x1.25×1.5x2xLive00:0002:1502:15last_img read more