Essential Reading! Get my 2nd book: The Lost Art of Closing “In The Lost Art of Closing, Anthony proves that the final commitment can actually be one of the easiest parts of the sales process—if you’ve set it up properly with other commitments that have to happen long before the close. The key is to lead customers through a series of necessary steps designed to prevent a purchase stall.” Buy Now Being a consultative salesperson and a trusted advisor requires you to be proactive. Being proactive creates greater trust, destroys latent dissatisfaction, and moves you to a higher level of value creation as a salesperson. Here are five actions you can take to be proactive now.Lead Your Clients: If you wait for your clients (or dream clients) to raise their hand and tell you they need your help, you aren’t leading. One of the reasons there is so much latent dissatisfaction (read lack of pain) is that most of your prospects don’t know how dissatisfied they should be. They count on smart, business savvy salespeople to keep them informed on what is happening in their industry and what is possible. Some of the ways you create value is by leading your client, by showing them the performance they are capable of, by helping them identify and close gaps, and by helping them build the case for change.Share Solutions: We are taught not to prescribe before we diagnose. This approach is always right, except when it isn’t. In some cases, being proactive means you have to present a solution before your client agrees they have a problem, and before they are willing to work on that problem. Sometimes it can take months or years to gain agreement around a change. But your job is to be proactive, and being proactive means showing your clients the biggest, best, most value creating solution possible, even if they aren’t ready to change, and even if they can’t swallow the whole thing in one bite.Be Resourceful: The trick to being proactive is to move from quarter to quarter with new ideas and new initiatives. The trick is to never grow complacent, to never run out of “what’s next.” Being proactive means you have to come up with new ideas and new applications. It means you have to transport ideas from one industry to another, and you need to figure out how to port them over. You need to work with your team to answer the question, “How do we create the next level of value for this client?” New ideas make you a resource. No ideas makes you a liability.Schedule Implementation Meetings: When you sell something, you are accountable for ensuring your client obtains the results. One of the best ways you can make this happen is to schedule and lead implementation meetings to ensure that you handoff the operations piece of what you sell to the team who will deliver those results. There is no reason to wait until you have challenges—and you will have challenges—to work through the known issues and the likely challenges. Being proactive in handing off relationships and responsibilities makes it easier to overcome the problems, challenges, and roadblocks.Schedule Quarterly Business Reviews: First, proactively take credit for the good work you have done. Too many salespeople and sales organizations fail to take credit for the 98.2% of what went right and focus on the 1.8% that went wrong. Second, resolve the outstanding issues that make up that 1.8%. Then, present your ideas to improve over the next quarter. If you are going to be collaborative, then ask your client to share with you the changes they believe you need to make over the next quarter. You may be doing excellent work, but dissatisfaction finds it’s way into your client’s company when complacency finds its way into yours. Make being proactive a process.QuestionsWhat one thing, if implemented now, would radically help your client or prospect improve their results?How many ideas do you have that would radically improve your client’s performance? How can you develop even more ideas and initiatives?How do you head off common problems and challenges before they occur?What formal process for being proactive do you have in place now?
Alvaro Morata scored twice as defending champions Spain cruised to a 3-0 victory over Turkey on Friday to qualify for the knockout stages of the European Championship.Spain recorded the largest winning margin of the tournament so far as its second victory left it top of Group D, while Turkey’s second defeat leaves it on the verge of elimination.After failing to impress with missed chances in an opening 1-0 win over the Czech Republic, forwards Morata and Manuel “Nolito” Agudo scored goals three minutes apart in the first half to give Spain a 2-0 lead which Turkey could not respond to.Morata opened the scoring with a header into the top-right corner off a pass over the top by Nolito in the 34th minute, sending the ball past goalkeeper Volkan Babacan from 12 meters.An error by the Turkey defense set up the second goal as center-back Mehmet Topal failed to clear Cesc Fabregas’ lobbed pass and instead lobbed it into the path of Nolito, who slid the ball in despite slipping as he took the shot.Spain made it 3-0 three minutes into the second half when Andres Iniesta’s through ball found Jordi Alba, who appeared slightly offside in the box, and the Barcelona left-back squared it for Morata to apply a simple finish.MORATA MISSES HAT-TRICKMorata could have scored a hat trick but was forced off the ball in a good position shortly after the hour mark.Turkey had no answer to Spain’s possession game and when chances did come, execution was poor, as the Turks failed to register a single shot on target. Striker Burak Yilmaz threatened the Spain goal shortly after Morata’s second but his wild shot went high and wide.advertisementSpain remains unbeaten in 14 games at the European Championship, and hasn’t lost since a 1-0 defeat to Portugal in 2004. Spain also hasn’t conceded a goal in the European tournament since its opener in 2012, a 1-1 draw against Italy.Turkey faces a fine from UEFA after its fans used flares and a smoke bomb in the stands, and repeatedly threw firecrackers onto the field, after the final whistle.Earlier in Group D, second-place Croatia drew 2-2 with the third-place Czechs earlier Friday in a game marred by Croatian fans throwing flares onto the pitch and fighting in the stands.
PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. — In front of Gary Woodland was a 263-yard shot to the scariest green on any par 5 at Pebble Beach, especially with a U.S. Open on the line. Behind him by one shot on the leaderboard was Brooks Koepka, the most dangerous figure in major championship golf these days.The safe shot was to lay up on the 14th and take his chances with a wedge“The idea was to play for the win,” Woodland said.With an extra boost of confidence from his caddie — Brennan Little, who was on the bag for Mike Weir in his Masters victory — Woodland delivered the shot of his life with a 3-wood that narrowly cleared a bunker, settled on the edge of the green and set up a birdie that gave him the cushion he needed.The rest was pure theater — a 90-foot pitch off the 17th green he nearly holed, a 30-foot birdie putt on the final hole for a 2-under 69 and a three-shot victory that denied Koepka’s bold bid to match a century-old record with a third straight U.S. Open.Brooks Koepka reacts after missing a birdie putt on the 18th hole during the final round of the U.S. Open Championship golf tournament Sunday, June 16, 2019, in Pebble Beach, Calif. (AP Photo/Matt York)Woodland’s pitch across the 17th green over a hump that checked and trickled to tap-in range effectively clinched it, taking its place with other big moments on the 17th green in the U.S. Open such as Jack Nicklaus and his 1-iron off the pin and Tom Watson’s chip-in birdie. It even got the attention of Nicklaus.“Took a lot of guts,” Nicklaus said on Twitter.Woodland had that it abundance, along with a message from an inspirational friend.“You got this.”Until Sunday, when he cradled the silver trophy at Pebble Beach, Woodland got more attention from one hole in a pro-am at the Phoenix Open. He was gracious and encouraging to Amy Bockerstette, a 20-year-old with Down Syndrome and sheer optimism. Woodland invited her to hit a shot on the par-3 16th (into a bunker). He wanted to blast it out of the sand but she said, “I got this.” She hit it out to 8 feet and made the putt. The PGA Tour-produced video has more than 20 million views.“I told myself that a million times today,” Woodland said. “I’ve got this.”Koepka didn’t make it easy, keeping the pressure on Woodland until the very end.Both represent the modern athlete in golf. Both are unflappable.Needing three putts to win, Woodland finished in style. He raised both arms in the air to salute the crowd, turned toward the Pacific and slammed down his fist.“I never let myself get ahead,” Woodland said. “Once that went in, it all came out of me. It’s special to finish it off here at Pebble Beach.”Koepka had to settle for a footnote in history. He closed with a 68, making him the first player with all four rounds in the 60s at a U.S. Open without winning.“It was awesome to come this close to going three in a row. It’s incredible,” Koepka said. “I didn’t really think about it until I was done on 18 and realized how close I actually was to not making history, but tying it, I guess you could say. Just wasn’t meant to be this week.”Gary Woodland celebrates after winning the U.S. Open Championship golf tournament Sunday, June 16, 2019, in Pebble Beach, Calif. (AP Photo/Matt York)Distance was no problem for Woodland on the 14th hole. It was the potential outcome.“Left is not good, right is out-of-bounds, long is not ideal and the bunker speaks for itself,” Woodland said. “So to execute that shot under the pressure, under the situation, that shot gave me the confidence. I felt better after hitting that shot on the golf course today than I had in a long, long time.”He believes it allowed him to hit one just as good on the 17th.Woodland dropped the 5-iron from his hands when it sailed well to the right of the green with the pin 90 feet away over a hump.Up ahead on the par-5 18th, Koepka drilled a 3-iron just over the back of the green, leaving him a 50-foot chip for eagle to tie, with a birdie likely to do the trick considering what Woodland faced on the 17th. Koepka chipped to 10 feet and narrowly missed the birdie putt.Woodland, unable to hit putter and get anywhere near the hole, opted to pitch it with a 64-degree wedge. He clipped it perfectly just over the hump, and it checked about 12 feet from the hole and trickled by the pin to secure par, and effectively the U.S. Open.“I was just trying to get it over that hump,” Woodland said. “I thought it had a chance to go in, but it’s not one I want over.”Woodland played conservatively down the 18th and made one last birdie that only mattered in the record book. He was aware that Tiger Woods had a 12-under 272 during his historic rout at Pebble Beach in 2000, and he topped him.That birdie put him at 13-under 271 and earned him $2.25 million, the richest payoff in golf.The difference was Woods won by 15 shots and was the only player under par. With a marine layer blocking the sunshine, and no significant wind at Pebble Beach all week, 31 players finished under par.Koepka started four shots behind in his bid to join Willie Anderson as the only players to go back-to-back-to-back in the toughest test in golf. He made up ground quickly with four birdies in five holes.“I felt like, ‘We’ve got a ball game now,’” Koepka said.He failed to get up-and-down from a bunker for birdie on the par-5 sixth, and missed a 6-foot birdie putt on the par-3 seventh. Still, he stayed within range, just like he wanted, knowing that anything could happen on the back nine of a U.S. Open.Something wonderful happened to Woodland.“Gary played a hell of a round today,” Koepka said. “Props to him to hang in there. To go out in style like that is pretty cool.”Of the four other players who had a shot at three straight U.S. Opens, no one came closer than Koepka. He now has a victory in the PGA Championship and runner-up finishes in the Masters and U.S. Open.Justin Rose was the only one who caught Woodland all day, with a birdie on the opening hole. Rose bogeyed from the bunker on No. 2 as Woodland birdied, and he never caught up. Rose fell out of the race with three bogeys in a four-hole stretch on the back nine. He shot 74 and shared third with Xander Schauffele (67), Jon Rahm (68) and Chez Reavie (71).Woods birdied six of his last 12 holes and was never a factor. He tied for 21st, 11 shots behind.By: Doug Ferguson, AP Golf WriterTweetPinShare0 Shares
Share on Messenger Premier League news Share on Pinterest West Ham United Share on Twitter Chelsea Reuse this content Share on LinkedIn Although West Ham remain winless under David Moyes, who is set to keep Adrián in goal in place of Joe Hart, there were signs of improvement during last Sunday’s 2-1 defeat at Manchester City. West Ham still have plenty of injury concerns and Chelsea come into this match in excellent form. Eden Hazard could increase the suffering for Moyes’s strugglers. Jacob SteinbergKick-off Saturday 12.30pm Venue London StadiumLast season West Ham 1 Chelsea 2Live Sky Sports Premier LeagueReferee Anthony TaylorThis season G9, Y35, R0, 3.89 cards per gameOdds H 7-1 A 1-2 D 3-1West Ham UtdSubs from Hart, Trott, Byram, Reid, Johnson, Haksabanovic, Noble, Kouyaté, Quina, Ayew, Arnautovic, Hernández, Martínez.Doubtful Byram (thigh), Hernández, Kouyaté, Reid (all hamstring)Injured Carroll (knee, 16 Dec), Collins (hamstring, unknown), Fonte(ankle, 20 Jan).Suspended NoneForm DLLDLLDiscipline Y32 R2Leading scorer Hernández 4ChelseaSubs from Caballero, Eduardo, Rudiger, Zappacosta, Pedro, Kenedy, Willian, Ampadu, Batshuayi, Clarke-Salter, Sterling, MusondaDoubtful Bakayoko (knee), Zappacosta (knock), Batshuayi (match fitness)Injured Drinkwater (illness, 12 Dec), David Luiz (knee, Jan)Suspended NoneForm WWWDWWDiscipline Y20 R3Leading scorer Morata 9 Share on Facebook Share via Email Match previews Topics Share on WhatsApp
Pinterest Share on Messenger As a player, Murphy was part of a successful Fort William side that joined the Highland League in the 1980s. He played for his hometown side for nearly 15 years, but when he returned for a charity game last summer he found a club on the brink. They were offered the chance to drop into the North Caledonian League but declined.“If we’d stepped down, we might have had more success on the park, but it would have been the beginning of the end for the club,” Murphy says. “It was a calculated risk.”Fort William’s existence is vital to maintaining youth football in the region, with the club’s local rivals, Clachnacuddin, 66 miles away in Inverness. More than 200 youngsters play in the youth teams – in an area where shinty is the traditional, dominant sport.Murphy was drawn towards the challenge, accepting a place on the board – and things moved quickly from there. “By the time the first board meeting had finished, I was the chairman,” he says. “Last season was all about stability. Our success was simply keeping the club going.” The gentle pleasures of watching football in the Scottish Borders Scotland Murphy is, though, eager for results to improve – and fiercely protective of the team’s young players.“We’ve got a core of good, talented players, but the average age of the squad is 19.These are young boys, trying to do their best. When people see the results and just laugh at us, it’s heartbreaking.”And when that elusive win comes? “The party in Fort William that night will be worth seeing,” Murphy says. “There’ll be a few whiskies drunk, I can tell you.”The playerScott Hunter was one of the few first-team players who reported for pre-season last summer. “The first training session wasn’t up to much,” he tells me. “We told each other we would play to keep the club alive – so when you’re getting beat 15-0 out there, try and remember the silver lining.”Hunter has embraced the club’s new fame, with TV cameras a regular feature at their picturesque Claggan Park ground. “It’s been a bit surreal at times,” he says. “One minute I was training with five players, then a few months later I’m scoring penalties on Sky Sports!” Not just any penalty either – a Panenka. “After the awful season we’d had, I thought I’d finish it in style. We haven’t had much else to cheer about.” Football Twitter Reuse this content The rebuilding project has also attracted younger fans, with crowds creeping back up. Michael, a local teenager who follows ‘the Fort’ home and away, also helps to run the team’s Twitter account, posting goal updates from far-flung grounds.“The relationship between the players and fans is great,” he says. “There’s a group of young fans who go every week and create a good, loud atmosphere.”Against Clachnacuddin Sean Grant’s last-minute free-kick earned a point in a frantic 3-3 draw. “The atmosphere was amazing,” Michael says. “There was even a pitch invasion after we equalised.”The managerRussell MacMorran never expected to be a football manager. Twenty years after hanging up his boots, he was working as a police officer in Fort William when illness and the strain of his job led to a diagnosis of complex PTSD. Off work, isolated and with limited support, he decided to get involved with football again.“I started as the club secretary, dealing with the day-to-day running of the club.There was a lot to do. There’s a basic level of professionalism that just wasn’t being met.”When Kris Anderson stepped down as manager in January, after a 14-1 defeat by Formartine United, MacMorran found himself in caretaker charge. “He’s got the boys buzzing and raring to go again,” Hunter says. Facebook Read more The Dundee fan who skipped his own stag do to play for the club Share on Twitter Share on WhatsApp The superfansFort William’s winless run has earned them a new wave of online supporters. YouTuber Jon Cox, aka LokiDoki, discovered the club through Football Manager. His interest in the team led him to set up a crowdfunding page, raising more than £5,000. “He came up to give us the cheque,” Murphy says. “He’s been fantastic, he’s got the freedom of the town.”The club have opened an online store, shipping scarves, replica kits and more worldwide. Their Facebook page has more than 5,000 subscribers – and the surge in support doesn’t end online. “Every game, there’s someone who has travelled up here – they see it as a kind of pilgrimage,” Murphy says. “That interest, having the cameras here, helps us to attract sponsors.” Share on Facebook Share via Email The points deduction was the best thing that could have happened to usRussell MacMorran, manager Topics Read more Scott Hunter: ‘I just want to play football. It doesn’t matter what the final score is.’ Photograph: Gavin Macqueen features Share on LinkedIn Share on Pinterest Read more Hunter works as an architect and the final score has rarely been his priority in more than a decade with Fort William. “I always want to play football on Saturday, it doesn’t matter what the score is at the end.” That ethos was tested when the team began the league campaign with back-to-back 11-1 defeats.“We knew realistically what it would be like – but it doesn’t make it much easier,” Hunter says. “When the 10th, 11th goals go in, it’s a dark, dark place – and a very difficult feeling to describe. But it’s all part of the journey.”The midfielder accepts the current team are “almost like lambs for the slaughter,” but has dealt with their struggles with humour, labelling himself “a shite Ronaldo” on Twitter with the hashtag #SH7. “The foundations for the future are there. My nephew is in the youth team. Hopefully one day I can tell him I didn’t do all this for nothing.” These are young boys doing their best. When people laugh at us, it’s heartbreakingPeter Murphy, chairman ‘It gets a bit boring’: a Montrose fan on 21 seasons in Scotland’s fourth division Fort William haven’t won a Highland League game for more than two years. Last season they picked up two draws in 34 matches, scoring 21 goals and conceding 245. A nine-point penalty for fielding an ineligible player meant they ended on -7 points. But the numbers only tell half the story.The club began the season with a handful of first-team players and fielded teams of teenagers in order to keep football alive in this remote corner of Scotland. The scorelines were monstrous – they lost 10 games by 10 goals or more – but fuelled a media interest that gave the club a platform to tell their story, attract a whole new fan base, and rediscover their soul.The chairmanWhen asked to explain the growing support for Fort William, Peter Murphy cuts to the chase. “Football fans will generally root for either successful teams or the underdog – and we’re clearly not successful right now.“Someone might be watching the results come in and think: ‘My team’s doing bad, but not as bad as Fort William.’ From there, they’ll end up on our social media and find out there’s more to this club than just a team getting thrashed every week.” External factors have not helped, though. One game was delayed by deer droppings on the pitch. Another was abandoned at half-time – with Fort William leading 1-0. There was also that nine-point deduction – a penalty MacMorran does not consider unduly harsh. “Rules are rules. The league treated us fairly,” he says. “Mistakes happen. Unfortunately in this case, it happened three times…” MacMorran adds that it was “the best thing that could have happened. Without it, we’d just have been bottom of the league, and nobody would have had any interest.”His target after earning the permanent role is to find a way off the bottom – and he can see potential.. “Often we’re 1-0 down at half-time and fall away in the last 15 minutes. Fitness is a big issue for these guys, but that’s something we can eradicate in pre-season.”The club’s first pre-season showed positive signs. Twelve goals flew in, but Fort William scored nine of them. Four youth team players were in the team that thrashed Jeanfield Swifts, with 14-year-old Robbie Rydings the star of the show. Saturday’s 7-1 defeat to Campbeltown Pupils showed there is still work to do, though.“When you talk to supporters now, they’re not just saying: ‘The team is useless,” MacMorran says. “They’re judging us on our effort and our ability and not the label – the so-called worst team in Britain.”The rebuilding process has helped him off the field, too. “The support I’ve had has been immense. It’s kept me going at times. I took a team that was depleted in their morale, their confidence, and even their love for football. Their resilience has been incredible. That’s the spirit of this club.”
Newcastle boss Benitez under consideration at Leicesterby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveNewcastle United boss Rafa Benitez is under consideration at Leicester City.The Mirror says Claude Puel bought himself time at the King Power Stadium with successive surprise wins over high-flying Chelsea and champions Manchester City. But their shortcomings were exposed on Saturday by Cardiff City, who recorded their first away win all season.The club’s Thai owner, Top Srivaddhanaprabha, is known to be an admirer of Rafa Benitez — whose hopes of a takeover at current club Newcastle that could inject fresh January transfer funds are fading.It means Puel is back on a tightrope at Leicester, where he has never fully won over fans despite leading the club to ninth last term.Questions about his man-management, motivational skills and tactics persist — and he appears to have a fractured relationship with star striker Jamie Vardy. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
zoom Bermuda-registered shipowner NewLead Holdings Ltd. said it had reached a full and final settlement with equity investor Ironridge Global IV on December 11, 2014 of all disputes between the parties.Pursuant to the settlement, the arbitration proceedings between the parties have been terminated.In addition, the Share Subscription Agreement entered into on March 4, 2014 and the other related transaction documents, including the Series A Preference Shares, Promissory Notes and Irrevocable Letter of Instruction, have all been terminated and canceled, the company pointed out.NewLead filed claims against Ironridge on June 3, 2014 for breach of contract, fraudulent inducement of contract and fraud, securities market manipulation and misrepresentation in violation of United States federal securities laws, unjust enrichment, and violation of 15 U.S.C. 78p(b).This included seeking disgorgement of short-swing profits, damages in excess of USD 25 million, punitive damages in excess of USD 100 million, and reimbursement of legal costs and the costs of the arbitration.NewLead has also requested that the arbitration tribunal declare that the agreement between NewLead and Ironridge is terminated and/or void ab initio, and that Ironridge has no entitlement to the issuance of additional common shares of NewLead.According to NewLead, Ironridge was selling substantial numbers of common shares of the company on a daily basis, to the detriment of the NewLead and all of its stockholders.After Ironridge was given an opportunity to respond at a hearing on June 9 to the Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) and Petition for Preliminary Injunctive Relief Pending Arbitration brought by NewLead, the U.S. District Court ruled in favor of Ironridge, dissolved the TRO, and denied NewLead’s request for a preliminary injunction.“At a fully evidentially hearing on June 9, 2014, Ironridge proved that NewLead’s allegations that Ironridge breached its contractual obligations – which were based entirely on rank speculation without a shred of evidence – were all demonstrably false. Ironridge submitted indisputable trading records conclusively proving that Ironridge has never engaged in short selling, market manipulation or selling above agreed volume limits,” the equity investor said on the occasion.
Los Angeles: Priyanka Chopra hit back at a Pakistani girl who called her a “hypocrite” for tweeting in favour of the Indian Army despite being a United Nations Goodwill Ambassador, and the girl, faced with widespread social media flak, has subsequently come out to claim the actresses was making her seem like the “bad guy”. At an incident in Los angeles, Priyanka told the girl: “I have many, many friends from Pakistan and I am from India. War is not something I’m really fond of but I am patriotic, so I’m sorry if I hurt sentiments of people who do love me and have loved me. But I think that all of us have a, sort of, middle ground that we all have to walk. Just like you probably do as well. The way that you came at me right now… girl, don’t yell. We’re all here for love.” Also Read – I have personal ambitions now: Priyanka Priyanka’s comment came as a retort to the Pakistani girl’s accusation that the actress a “hypocrite”, who was “encouraging nuclear war against Pakistan.” The video of the Pakistani girl yelling at Priyanka went viral over the weekend. The girl had questioned the Priyanka’s role as a United Nations Goodwill ambassador over the actress’s controversial tweet congratulating the Indian Air Force for their attack on Jaish-e-Mohammed terror camp at Balakot in Pakistan earlier this year. Also Read – Salman Khan remembers actor Vinod Khanna “You are United Nations Goodwill ambassador for peace and you are encouraging nuclear war in Pakistan. There is no way you are in this… As a Pakistani, millions of people, like ,me, have supported you in your business,” the girl said at an event. Soon, there was widespread criticism on social media against the Pakistani girl. “That Pakistani girl who jumped @priyankachopra was very disrespectful!… i was supposed to be the next one to ask a question but she ruined it for all,” tweeted a user present at the do. Following such flak, the girl subsequently came out on social media to reveal her name as Ayesha Malik. She also shot out several tweets blaming Priyanka for the fact that she was being projected as the “bad guy” now. “Hi, I’m the girl that “yelled” at Priyanka Chopra. It was hard listening to her say, “we should be neighbors and love each other” – swing that advice over to your PM. Both India and Pakistan were in danger. And instead she tweeted out in favor for nuclear war,” wrote the girl, on her official twitter account, @Spishaa. A series of tweets followed. “It took me back to when I couldn’t reach my family because of the blackouts and how scared/helpless I was. She gaslit me and turned the narrative around on me being the “bad guy” – as a UN ambassador this was so irresponsible,” @Spishaa further tweeted, adding in another tweet: “Sorry, didn’t realize that speaking on a humanitarian crisis was “venting”.
Islamabad: Cash-strapped Pakistan may seek the intervention of the US for relief from the tough conditions of the FATF and the IMF in lieu of its its services for the peaceful exit of American troops from Afghanistan, according to a media report. Prime Minister Imran Khan is likely to persuade the Trump administration for relief from the FATF and the IMF during his meeting with US President Donald Trump on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly session in New York this month. Also Read – Saudi Crown Prince ‘snubbed’ Pak PM, recalled jet from US The anti-money laundering watchdog Financial Action Task Force (FATF) last year placed Pakistan on the grey list of countries whose domestic laws are considered weak to tackle the challenges of money laundering and terrorism financing. The Paris-based body warned Islamabad to meet its commitment by October or face action, which could possibly lead to the country getting blacklisted. According to reports, Pakistan fared poorly at the final review of the FATF held in Bangkok ahead of the plenary meeting in October. Also Read – Record number of 35 candidates in fray for SL Presidential polls “The FATF is going to meet in Paris somewhere in next month of October where it will decide Pakistan’s fate. The same month, the IMF will also initiate review of first quarter of Pakistan’s output under USD 6 billion programme loan, a Cabinet member told The News. One of the economic ministers told the daily that Pakistan subscribed the toughest ever IMF loan programme without negotiations and now the economic managers had started feeling the heat of tough conditions. The government is facing a huge revenue shortfall and it will be left with no option but to come up with a mini-budget with more taxation on the direction of the IMF. The government does not want to impose more taxes (on the masses) and this could only be done if the US plays its role in getting relief from the IMF, the daily said. “Pakistan wants relaxation in the position of the FATF and the IMF against its services for peaceful exit of US troops from Afghanistan, the minister said. Though President Donald Trump has cancelled talks with the Taliban following a car bomb attack in Kabul that killed an American soldier and 11 others, the US administration “still hopes that Pakistan is in a position to influence the Taliban for peaceful exist of US troops from Afghanistan”, the minister, who was not identified by the report, said. A top official privy to the development on front of FATF told the Pakistani daily that the country is left with no option but to launch a diplomatic offensive to win support of Saudi Arabia, China, Turkey and Malaysia ensuring the FATF’s decision in its favour. “While initiating diplomatic efforts, Pakistan should also keep India out that wants to place Pakistan in the black list. Under this scenario, the importance of US has increased and Pakistan will during prime minister’s visit to US will persuade Trump administration for relief from the FATF and IMF,” the daily reported. There is a slowdown in economic activities in Pakistan in the wake of tough IMF programme, the government has witnessed a huge surge of 8.9 per cent in the budget deficit in the last fiscal year ended on June 30, 2019. Inflation has entered double digit and because of high interest rate, economic activities have almost come to a standstill. Unemployment is on the rise. Under this scenario, Pakistan wants the US help to dilute IMF conditions, as the US has 15 per cent voting rights in the IMF board. If the US takes the decision in favour of Pakistan, then the EU and Japan will follow it. The US, the EU and Japan have 51 per cent voting rights in the IMF board, the report said.
MONTREAL – Visible minorities, particularly Arabs and West Asians, feel less safe walking alone in their neighbourhoods after dark than do other Canadians, according to a Statistics Canada survey released Tuesday.The study was conducted with data collected in 2014.Forty-four per cent of respondents who identified themselves as belonging to a visible minority group said they felt “very safe” walking home alone after dark, versus 54 per cent for other Canadians.Stats Can noted that the majority of visible minorities in the country live in large cities, “where feelings of safety are relatively low.”“Yet even after taking into account where they lived, visible minorities remained less likely to report feeling safe than their non-visible minorities counterparts,” the agency said.Out of all the visible minority groups in the country, Arab and West Asian respondents were the most likely to say they felt unsafe.Fifteen per cent of Arab respondents said they did not feel safe walking alone as did 16 per cent of West Asians.“This marks a change when compared with perceptions of personal safety 10 years earlier, when the sense of safety felt by Arabs and West Asians was comparable to that of other visible minorities,” the report said.
From now until June 10, Live Nation Entertainment will work once again with (RED) to raise awareness and money for The Global Fund to fight AIDS.Fans can take action locally by donating up to $25 when purchasing tickets on the Ticketmaster.com, Ticketmaster.ca and LiveNation.com websites.“When we first worked together in 2013, we created nearly 100 million impressions and raised more than $130,000 for (RED), through the power of music, sports and live entertainment fans across the world,” said Live Nation Entertainment CEO and President Michael Rapino. “Now, we want to take it a step further and see if we can double these numbers in 2014. So many people see the importance of coming together to help begin the end of AIDS, and we want to do our part in helping to deliver an AIDS Free Generation in our lifetime. I look forward to seeing everyone work together to pull off this critical campaign.”Fans purchasing tickets to select live entertainment, sports, theater, family and music events can support (RED) and the critical work of the Global Fund by making monetary contributions at the end of their ticket purchase on the aforementioned websites. 100% of these donations will go directly to the Global Fund, an international financing institution that delivers programs which provide prevention, treatment, counseling, HIV testing and care services for people living with HIV/AIDS. Life-saving medication can cost as little as 40 cents a day, meaning that a $25 donation can deliver more than two months’ worth of medicine.Said Deborah Dugan, CEO, (RED): “We are excited to build upon our relationship with Live Nation in support of (RED)’s mission to help end mother-to-child transmission of HIV. We thank everyone for rallying around this incredibly important goal.”Founded in 2006 by Bono and Bobby Shriver, (RED) has currently generated more than $250 million for the Global Fund. Last November and December 2013 was the first time that Live Nation Entertainment worked with (RED).Find out more here.Source:PR Newswire
(Tori Stafford, 8, was murdered in Woodstock, Ont. in April 2009) Melissa RidgenBeverly AndrewsAPTN NewsLess than 24-hours after receiving a report from Corrections Canada, Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale ordered Terri-Lynne McClintic back to prison.The 28-year old is serving life in prison for the first degree murder of eight year old Tori Stafford in 2009.“I hope everyone can sleep easier knowing Terri-Lynne, a child killer, has been moved from their community and back where she belongs,” said Rodney Stafford, Tori’s father.APTN InFocus put healing lodges under the microscope Wednesday.The Stafford family has been in the spotlight since it was revealed McClintic had been down-graded to a medium-security risk – despite several violent offences in prison – and moved to the Okimaw Ohci Healing Lodge in Saskatchewan.McClintic’s brother told Global News that they are not indigenous.(Rodney Stafford after a rally on Parliament Hill to have McClintic moved back to prison)Stafford said he was elated after receiving word that McClintic, the woman who lured his daughter to a car so her boyfriend could rape and kill her, is out of a healing lodge and back behind bars.McClintic has now been transferred to the women’s prison in Edmonton.Stafford said he’s relieved for the Nekaneet First Nation, where the healing lodge is located, and the town of Maple Creek.On Thursday, Marlene Orr, the director of the Stan Daniels Healing lodge in Alberta, told APTN InFocus that healing lodges are an important option in the rehabilitation of some offenders.She said an inmate is closely vetted and must show she really wants to make changes in her life.“They have to have good behavior while they are in the institution,” Orr said..“They can’t be affiliated with any security threat groups, they can’t have been breaking the rules while they’ve been in prison. They have to demonstrate a commitment to working with us in addressing those root issues.”Maximum security inmates are currently eligible to enter Stan Daniels healing centre, if they have worked their way to a medium- or minimum -security designation – regardless of the crime they were originally sentenced for.That means they can become eligible to transfer to healing lodges, Orr added.“And we very clearly lay out the expectations,” she said. “They also have to be supported by their team the institution which includes their parole officer and other correctional staff.”But Matt Willan, who works with offenders through Ogijiita Pimatiswin Kinamatwin in Manitoba, thinks some crimes are too serious to work off in a healing lodge.“There are some crimes you commit that you can’t come back from,” he said.Tori was walking home from school in Woodstock April 8, 2009, when McClintic approached her, promised to show her a puppy and lured her into a car driven by Michael Rafferty.McClintic pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in 2010 and testified at Rafferty’s trial in 2012, where he was convicted of first-degree murder.Rodney said he isn’t against healing lodges, but he doesn’t want McClintic there.“I do believe it is a good situation for some people who warrant going back out on the streets,” he said.“But when it comes to the heinous acts behind a monstrous killer, of a child at that, how does somebody even remotely of this magnitude get into one of these facilitates?”The Stafford family had started a petition to have McClintic returned to prison.
LOS ANGELES — “The Big Bang Theory” is picking up ratings steam in the final stretch of its 12-year run.The CBS sitcom was last week’s most-watched entertainment show as total viewership ticked up to a 2018-19 season high of more than 13 million.That’s according to Nielsen figures out Tuesday, and a welcome sign for CBS: Viewership for last fall’s season debut episode of “Big Bang Theory” fell 30 per cent from the fall 2017 opener.While audience interest is likely to grow as the sitcom draws to its conclusion this spring, “Big Bang Theory” also is benefiting from the wrap-up of competing Thursday night NFL broadcasts.Football still dominated the week, as playoff games or related programming counted for six of the 10 most-watched shows. Top-rated network Fox was the big beneficiary.Lynn Elber, The Associated Press
8 February 2008United Nations agencies and their partners are rushing emergency food, medicine and other relief items to assist some 30,000 people who have fled the fighting in Chad and are seeking refuge in neighbouring Cameroon. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) estimates that after fighting erupted in the capital, N’Djamena, last Saturday between rebel forces and the army, 20,000 to 30,000 Chadians streamed over the Chari River to Kousseri, a remote town in north-eastern Cameroon.According to UNHCR, some Chadians started trickling back home Wednesday morning after an uneasy calm returned to N’Djamena. Some were returning just for the day and planning to go back to Cameroon overnight, while others have returned to their homes in the Chadian capital but left their families behind in Kousseri, which is more than 1,500 kilometres from Cameroon’s capital, Yaoundé.“Our teams in Kousseri have observed that there have been a lot of back-and-forth movements in the past two days, but it is too early to say if people are going back to their homes in Chad permanently,” UNHCR spokesperson Jennifer Pagonis told reporters in Geneva. The agency has started an emergency airlift to bring aid to the refugees in Cameroon. By Sunday, two flights carrying 90 tonnes of supplies, including plastic sheeting, blankets, jerry cans and cooking sets, will have arrived in Kousseri.The UN World Food Programme is transferring food, including rice, vegetables and oil, from its stocks in the Cameroonian town of Maroua to Kousseri. The agency will also be transporting by plane high-energy biscuits from Accra in Ghana to Kousseri. Concerned about the risk of epidemics, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has ordered 25,000 doses of both meningitis and measles vaccines.UN agencies and their partners are preparing to respond to an influx of up to 50,000 people from Chad into Cameroon.“The situation is difficult, and not yet under control. We are concerned about the fate of the most vulnerable,” said Sophie de Caen, UN Resident Coordinator for Cameroon. “However, food, non-food items and medical supplies have already been ordered, and the first shipments have already reached the refugees.”Meanwhile, UNHCR reports that the situation in N’Djamena was calm today but the streets remained empty and very few shops were open. “UNHCR local staff who remained in N’Djamena are starting to collect UNHCR tents which were looted from our warehouse and later abandoned by looters in the streets,” said Ms. Pagonis, adding that the agency’s office in the capital was not touched.In eastern Chad, UNHCR and its partners are continuing to provide protection and assistance to 240,000 Sudanese refugees in 12 camps and 180,000 internally displaced Chadians.
In a strongly worded response to the directive issued by the Securities and Exchanges Commission, regarding the sale of 60.8% shares of Agalawatte Plantations PLC, Chairman of Mackwoods Plantations Pvt Ltd, Dr Chrishantha Nonis pointed out that the transaction was carried out with due authorization and instructions being issued to the stock broker.The action by the SEC in issuing a directive on a complaint made by non-shareholders, without making any formal inquiries into the matter, is highly questionable, he says. The sale of Agalawatte shares was completed on 14th July 2016 and six days after the share transaction was concluded, the SEC on 20th July issued a directive stating that shareholder approval had not been obtained. The stock broking firm has informed the SEC that the contents in the directive are incorrect in that the instructions received were not only from Dr. Chris Nonis but also from Mrs. Shelendra Ranaweera and Mr. Lalith Fonseka, which information was available to the SEC. The letter further states that the SEC should not interfere with the internal affairs of Mackwoods Plantations (Private) Ltd, and has requested that the SEC withdraw its allegations. (Colombo Gazette)
Two more policemen have been arrested over the double murder in Rathgama.The Police said that a Sub-Inspector (SI) and Police Constable were arrested over the incident and have been remanded until March 13th. The two policemen attached to the Special Investigating Unit of the Southern Province have been arrested over the murder of two businessmen in Rathgama.The Criminal Investigations Department (CID) has so far arrested six policemen over the incident. (Colombo Gazette)
The committee calls for the government to do more to challenge academy trusts that are paying excessive salaries Staff costs make up more than 70% of a school’s cost, so large salary hikes, when overall funding is not rising at the same rate “add to the financial pressures faced by schools”, the group of MPs said.It also says the Department for Education has “no easy way” of linking performance and salaries, so could not tell the committee if those earning large pay packages are those responsible for the best-performing schools.The committee calls for the government to do more to challenge academy trusts that are paying excessive salaries and take action if they cannot be justified.Trustees are responsible for helping to make decisions relating to an academy trust – which can run one or a group of schools, and according to government information, they would only receive payment for their work as an employee in an academy trust – such as a headteacher, or the chief executive of a chain of academies (often known as a multi-academy trust). Meg Hillier, PAC chair The report also says that academy trusts are educating increasing numbers of children and handling large amounts of public money, the report says.”It is therefore crucial that they show the highest standards of governance, accountability and financial management,” it says.”Too often academy trusts are falling short of these standards and the Department for Education (the Department) is too slow to react.”PAC chair Meg Hillier said: “More than two million pupils are taught by academies in England. The governance and financial management of these schools is fundamentally important to pupils’ educational outcomes and future life prospects.”If parents, Parliament and others are to hold them properly to account, it is vital they have timely access to transparent and detailed information. Academies and the trusts that run them must be judged against the standards expected of other schools funded by the taxpayer.”She also said: “Excessive trustee salaries deprive the frontline of vital funds and it is alarming that, in two-thirds of cases where Government has challenged individual trusts on pay exceeding £150,000, it has not been satisfied by the response.”A Department for Education spokesperson said: “All academy trusts operate under a strict system of financial accountability and have to publish their audited accounts.”To ensure all pupils get the excellent education they deserve we continue to scrutinise the system on an annual basis and take action where necessary, such as recently asking all trusts paying high salaries to justify them.” Academies are using taxpayers’ money to pay “unjustifiably” high salaries to senior staff, MPs have warned.In some cases, academy trusts are failing to prove that hefty pay packages are appropriate, according to the public accounts committee.In a new report, MPs argue that if pay is left unchallenged, there is a risk that high wages become accepted as the norm, which will pile more pressure on school budgets.Academies are state schools that are not under local authority control, but run by trusts. The PAC report says: “Some academy trusts appear to be using public money to pay excessive salaries.”The latest official annual report and accounts for academies in England show that there were 102 instances where trustees were paid salaries in excess of £150,000, it notes.It goes on to say that last November, the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) wrote to 29 single academy trusts (those responsible for just one school) where a trustee was paid in excess of £150,000, requesting justification. While all 29 have responded, in two-thirds of cases ESFA is not yet satisfied with the response, the committee said.”Unjustifiably high salaries use public money that could be better spent on improving children’s education and supporting frontline teaching staff, and do not represent value for money,” the report says.”If the payment of such high salaries remains unchallenged, it is more likely that such high salaries become accepted as indicative of the market rate. This could then distort the employment market in the sector for senior staff.” Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.
Apr 25th 2017, 10:37 PM By Cormac Fitzgerald File photo of the entrance to St Vincents Hospital in Dublin. File photo of the entrance to St Vincents Hospital in Dublin. Image: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article Image: Sam Boal/RollingNews.ie 21,872 Views Share21 Tweet Email1 Here is the deal reached by St Vincent’s and Holles Street over the new National Maternity Hospital The agreement reached in November between the two hospitals was released today to the public. Short URL https://jrnl.ie/3358407 THE ST VINCENT’S Hospital Group will have ‘corporate oversight’ of the new National Maternity Hospital when it moves to its new campus, according to the agreement reached between the two hospitals.The agreement reached in November between the SVHG and the current National Maternity Hospital at Holles Street has been released to the public.The agreement between the two hospitals over the provision of the new NMH is in the form of a 25-page report by mediator Kieran Mulvey.The hospital is to be located at Elm Park alongside St Vincent’s University Hospital on the campus owned by the SVHG.The agreement states that the SVHG will retain a “corporate unitary oversight of all campus utilities and services”.The report states that this oversight can be achieved providing the SVHG board with assurances that the NMH will be managed effectively, and that: The appropriate legal, financial, regulatory and risk assessments are up to date and undertaken in accordance with statutory requirements.This oversight will be further ensured by adding two directors nominated from the current NMH to the board of the SVHG (as well as the new maternity hospital).“Clinical independence”The proposed NMH has been mired in controversy since it emerged that SVHG would take ownership of the hospital.This stems from the fact that the religious order the Sisters of Charity are the principal shareholders in the SVHG.The agreement states that the SVHG will be the “sole owner” of the new hospital.The hospital will be operated as a new company: The National Maternity Hospital at Elm Park DAC (limited by shares).This ownership will be dependent on the Minister of Health holding a “Golden Share” in the hospital, which will allow its reserved powers, constitution and composition to be protected.Current Health Minister Simon Harris, as well as the current Master of the NMH at Holles Street Dr Rhona Mahony and others have ensured the new hospital would have “clinical independence”.This is laid out in the agreement under the heading of “reserved powers”, which ensures:Clinical and operational independence in the provision of maternity, gynaecology, obstetrics and neonatal services (without religious, ethnic or other distinction) in the hospital at Elm Park, Dublin and the provision of medical, surgical, nursing, midwifery and other health services at Elm Park, Dublin, including strategic planning in relation to the development of such services in the future in accordance with developing best practice.Independence will be further ensured by the retention of the role of the Mastership model at the hospital.These “reserved powers” will be protected by the “Golden Share” which ensures they:…shall not be capable of amendment save with the prior written and unanimous approval of all the Directors of the Board and with the consent of the Minister for Health.Board of directorsAs previously reported, the agreement lays out that the board of directors at the new hospital should be made up of nine directors.Four will be nominated by the SVHG, four will be nominated by the current NMH, and one will be an independent international expert in Obstetrics and Gynaecology.The report on the agreement states that the “appropriate legal mechanisms” will need to be put in place regarding the structure, objectives, role and powers of the new hospital.There have been significant developments over the new maternity hospital since the report was first sent to Minister Harris in November.Over 92,699 people signed an online petition calling for the Sisters of Charity to be “blocked” as sole owners of the new hospital, with protests held last week outside the Department of Health.Following the public outcry, the SVHG board said that it would be reviewing its role in the future of the project.The chairman of the SVHG board today released a statement ensuring that any medical procedure that is currently legal in Ireland will be carried out at the new National Maternity Hospital.Commenting on the release of the agreement today, Harris said the boards of both hospitals would be meeting this week and would review progress to date.He restated the assurance on clinical independence and said that he intended to report to Government on the status of the project by the end of May.You can view the full agreement hereRead: Over 70,000 sign petition to prevent Sisters of Charity becoming owners of maternity hospitalRead: St Vincent’s chairman: Any legal medical procedure will be carried out at new maternity hospital Tuesday 25 Apr 2017, 10:37 PM 117 Comments
Chris Heaton-Harris Image: House of Commons via PA Images Junior minister in charge of Brexit no-deal planning resigns over Article 50 delays Chris Heaton-Harris said that he believes that parliament should have honoured the 2016 referendum result. Share6 Tweet Email As the clock ticks down, get all the best Brexit news and analysis in your inbox: 20 Comments Source: Chris Heaton-Harris/Twitter By Hayley Halpin Chris Heaton-Harris Image: House of Commons via PA Images https://jrnl.ie/4575388 Short URL “At Cabinet yesterday, there was an opportunity to get onto the front foot for once. However, by legitimising and turning to Jeremy Corbyn, to assist you at this crucial stage, rather than being bold, is grave error,” he said.A front page story in today’s Daily Telegraph reported that May was “ignoring the will of her Cabinet” by seeking Corbyn’s help instead of pursuing no deal and that “a full-scale Tory rebellion” could follow.May’s director of communications denied the story this morning.With reporting by Rónán Duffy I simply cannot support any further extension to Article 50 and this obviously means I cannot stay in government. After much contemplation, I have decided to leave Theresa May’s Government. I’m grateful to the PM for giving me the opportunity to serve the UK and I will continue to represent my constituents as the MP for Daventry. pic.twitter.com/sHkVhwJ7bb— Chris Heaton-Harris (@chhcalling) April 3, 2019 Wednesday 3 Apr 2019, 4:40 PM Speaking yesterday after a marathon day of talks with her Cabinet colleagues, Theresa May said she wanted an extension to the Brexit deadline in order to agree a deal. May said she would seek talks with Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn in order to facilitate this and there were suggestions that May could pursue a softer Brexit, such as the inclusion of a customs union arrangement, as part of these talks.During last night’s statement in Downing Street, May said that although she believed the UK could “make a success” of no-deal in the long run, leaving with a deal would be preferable.In his resignation letter, Heaton-Harris said that while he would have preferred to leave the EU with May’s deal, he believes the UK “would have swiftly overcome any immediate issues of leaving without a deal and gone on to thrive”. “It has been a privilege to work with some quite brilliant civil servants in my Department and across your government. They have moved mountains to prepare our country for leaving the European Union without a negotiated deal,” Heaton-Harris wrote. “Unfortunately, I do not believe the briefings you have received on these matters recently have received on these matters recently have reflected all they have achieved or the preparations out European partners have made,” he wrote. However, I completely understand you do not want to leave the European Union without a negotiated deal and that obviously makes my job in government irrelevant. Other resignationEarlier today, assistant government whip Nigel Adams also announced his resignation. “I believe we have two great challenges. We must deliver the Brexit that the people voted for. And we must prevent the calamity of a Corbyn government. Sadly, I fear that we are now at risk of simultaneously failing in both,” Adams wrote in a letter to the Prime Minister. Apr 3rd 2019, 4:40 PM Source: Nigel Adams MP/Twitter Following yesterday’s cabinet, this morning I’ve been to Downing Street & resigned my position as UK Govt Minister for Wales & Govt Whip. I’m grateful to the PM for the opportunity to serve as a Minister since 2017 & will continue to serve my constituents from the backbenches. pic.twitter.com/W15xS4cOBP— Nigel Adams MP (@nadams) April 3, 2019 THE UK JUNIOR minister in charge of Brexit no-deal planning Chris Heaton-Harris has resigned. In his resignation letter, the MP said that he believes that parliament should have honoured the 2016 referendum result and that the UK should have left the EU on 29 March, as planned. He said he could not support any further extension to Article 50. “Indeed every time we seek an extension to this process we diminish faith in our political system and the good people, from all political parties, who serve within it,” Heaton-Harris wrote. 16,767 Views Tweet thisShare on FacebookEmail this article
Facebook Twitter: @NeosKosmos Instagram Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras inaugurated the new national highway linking Corinth to the western port of Patra on Tuesday less following the launch of the new Tempe motorway.The new highway operated by the Olympia Odos company, runs from Corinth centre across the northern Peloponnese to Patra and is expected to reduce the travel time to Athens to 100 minutes.The Olympia Highway has a total length of 202 kilometres, from Elefsina to Corinth and then to Patras and the Patras bypass. The Corinth-Patras section inaugurated on Tuesday is 120 kilometres long, with two lanes and an emergency lane in both directions and 12 completed tunnels with a total length of 18 kilometres along its length.The contractor’s obligations, in addition to building the Corinth-Patras highway, include the improvement of the existing Elefsina-Corinth section of the road and the Patras bypass, with a length of 82 kilometres.The total cost of construction is 1.8 billion euros and the cost of land expropriations is 223 million euros, or 172 million less than the amounts originally demanded by contractors before renegotiation.“It is an important work for Patras, the Peloponnese and Western Greece that would never have been completed if it wasn’t for the difficult negotiations with contractors and construction companies,” Mr Tsipas said.“We are opening the road that was hindering the connection of Western Greece with the capital, we are opening the road to exit the crisis and supervision… this is the strong symbolism of the work. “This is a symbol of Greece’s ability to stand on its own two feet which will mark and end to the wearisome journey that motorists had been subjected to until now,” the PM stressed.Referring to the long delays that had dogged the project, which had started in 2007 and was only half finished in 2015 when SYRIZA came to power, Infrastructure and Transport Minister Christos Spirtzis noted that the work had been bogged down by such an “incredibly tangled skein of obstacles, loose ends, problems and reactions”.“The more than 10-year road blockade of Patras, the third-largest city of the country is finally ending. There is finally an end to the fear of an accident on a road that was literally drenched in blood all along its length. There is not a family in western Greece, Aitoloakarnania and Epirus that has not mourned the loss of loved one on this road,” he said.All of the lanes will be opened for the Easter holidays while tollbooths will not be in operation before the weekend. Reportedly, there will be slight moderation to cost and operation days after Easter.The general sentiment has been positive apart from certain political groups contesting the naming of some tunnels.The tunnel commemorating Panos Mylonas, a young man whose death on the old Athens-Patra highway in a 2004 crash prompted the creation of a road safety institute has been received warmly yet the Nikos Temponeras one, named after the teacher and left-wing activist who was killed in a protest against education reform in the early 1990s and the Andreas Papandreou tunnel have stirred controversy.