Senators Support Election of Superintendents, Mayors but…

first_imgSenator J. Gbleh-bo Brown, Chairman on Internal AffairsThe Senate committee on Internal Affairs and Good Governance has presented to plenary “a comprehensive work” on a bill known as Local Government Law of Liberia 2017, with many senators cautiously welcoming it.The Bill was presented to the legislature by the Executive Branch of Government in August, 2015 and subsequently passed by the House of Representatives in December of the same year and sent to the senate for concurrence.For two years, the senate, through its relevant committee with the involvement of local and international experts and traditional leaders, conducted three public hearings in Buchanan, Ganta, and Tubmanburg respectively.During yesterday’s debate, which followed a long PowerPoint presentation by Chairman of Internal Affairs Committee Gbleh-bo Brown in the Chambers of the senate, many senators who participated welcomed the provision in the Bill that called for the decentralization of the country through the election of local government authorities, especially superintendents, commissioners and mayors, but spoke against the election of chiefs.Grand Cape Mount County Senator Varney Sherman, who displayed a huge consignment of Liberia Law Review books, among many arguments, welcomed the election of superintendents and commissioners but did not include chiefs, whom he said work under the “higher-ups.”Sen. Sherman urged that his colleagues, who are against the election of superintendents, should not see themselves as being threatened by the strengthening of local government, and suggested that the committee introduce a standardized criteria for qualifications for the creation of cities, statutory districts and other local government structures.However, Liberia being a unitary state, Article 56 (A) says, “All cabinet ministers, deputy and assistant cabinet ministers, ambassadors, … superintendents and other government officials, both military and civilian are appointed by the President. But the ‘B’ says, there shall be elections of paramount, clan and town chiefs by the registered voters… to serve for a term of six years.”Constitutionally, Liberia currently has 113 cities, with Sinoe and Grand Kru counties having 42 and 32 cities each.Sen. Brown at a press conference yesterday expressed the belief that decentralization will strengthen the country’s resolve for peace, adding: “Since 1847, governance system has been heavily centralized, with every major decision, activity, direction coming from Monrovia and decisions handed down to the local people, so decentralization is to give the legal regulatory framework some of the powers back to the people.”Brown maintained that citizens want to participate in decisions as to the running of the country as well as decide their own fate from the clan, chieftain, the district and to the county levels.“Every county is going to have a development plan and agenda through the Social Development Fund, and this calls for a decentralized plan using the participatory approach, which eventually brings ownership and helps bring about sustainability and peace,” Sen. Brown said. He served as Maryland County Superintendent during the regime of former President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf.Sen. Brown furthered that passage of the Bill will promote economic development in the counties, as the law will empower every county to collect some level of revenues that will be used for their own activities, while at the same time helping the central government.Administratively, Brown assured the passage of the Bill will help in the harmonization and rationalization of the country’s local structures, adding: “The current system is overlapping, with some countries having a proliferation of cities and structures.“So if this bill is passed, it is going to standardize the creation of cities, statutory districts and it will make sense out of our current local government structures,” Sen. Brown said.He admitted, however, that the law as proposed is not perfect with some questions, which he said the committee has plans to remove.He maintained that his committee is convinced that the benefits to be accrued from the Bill outweighs some of the concerns harbored by other senators.He told reporters that his committee is convinced that the Bill will be passed before the end of May.Meanwhile, Internal Affairs Minister Varney Sirleaf, who was present at yesterday’s debate, informed senators that his ministry has already commenced the process of boundary harmonization, “which is a very important component of the Local Government Bill, and prerequisite to some of the conditions for its passage.”However there are concerns that the passage of such a bill could be a first step towards the holding of a national referendum on the issue, since Article 56 clearly provides for county superintendents to be appointed by the president and that they shall hold office at the pleasure and will of the president. Anything to the contrary will constitute a blatant violation of the constitution, according to a prominent lawyer(name withheld).Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Photo library: Countryside 15

first_img{loadposition tc}Click on a thumbnail for a low-resolution image, or right-click on the link below it to download a high-resolution copy of the image.» Download Countryside contact sheet (1.6MB) » Download full image library contact sheet (10.5MB) Western Cape province:An ostrich farm in the Oudtshoorn district. Ostrich meat is an increasingly popular low-fat alternative to red meat.Photo: Rodger Bosch,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Western Cape province:An ostrich farm in the Oudtshoorn district. Ostrich meat is an increasingly popular low-fat alternative to red meat.Photo: Rodger Bosch,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Western Cape province:An ostrich farm in the Oudtshoorn district. Ostrich meat is an increasingly popular low-fat alternative to red meat.Photo: Rodger Bosch,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Western Cape province:An ostrich farm in the Oudtshoorn district. Ostrich meat is an increasingly popular low-fat alternative to red meat.Photo: Rodger Bosch,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Western Cape province:An ostrich farm in the Oudtshoorn district. Ostrich meat is an increasingly popular low-fat alternative to red meat.Photo: Rodger Bosch,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Western Cape province:An ostrich farm in the Oudtshoorn district. Ostrich meat is an increasingly popular low-fat alternative to red meat.Photo: Rodger Bosch,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Western Cape province:An ostrich farm in the Oudtshoorn district. Ostrich meat is an increasingly popular low-fat alternative to red meat.Photo: Rodger Bosch,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Western Cape province:An ostrich farm in the Oudtshoorn district. Ostrich meat is an increasingly popular low-fat alternative to red meat.Photo: Rodger Bosch,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image Western Cape province:An ostrich farm in the Oudtshoorn district. Ostrich meat is an increasingly popular low-fat alternative to red meat.Photo: Rodger Bosch, MediaClubSouthAfrica.com » Download high-res image COUNTRYSIDE 15: {loadposition cs}Having trouble downloading high-resolution images? Queries about the image library? Email Janine Erasmus at janinee@mediaclubsouthafrica.com.last_img read more

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South African English is lekker!

first_imgSouth Africans speak English, but that doesn’t mean you’ll always understand us. Our “robots” are nothing like R2D2, “just now” doesn’t mean immediately, and “babbelas” is not a shampoo. Here’s an informal guide to our weirder words.“Bunny chow” is a curry served in a hollowed-out loaf of bread. It is usually eaten with the fingers, not a knife and fork. (Image: Brand South Africa)South African English has a flavour all its own, borrowing freely from Afrikaans, which is similar to Dutch and Flemish, as well as from the country’s many African languages. Other words come from Indian, Malay and colonial Portuguese influences.Note: In many words derived from Afrikaans, the letter “g” is pronounced in the same way as the “ch” in the Scottish “loch” or the German “achtung” – a kind of growl at the back of the throat. In the pronunciation guides below, the spelling for this sound is given as “gh”.Aabba: Carry a child secured to one’s back with a blanket. From the Khoi-San.amasi: [pronounced “um-ah-see”] A popular drink of thick sour milk. From isiZulu. An alternative name is maas.apartheid: [ap-art-hate] Literally “apart-ness” in Afrikaans, apartheid was the policy of racial separation, and the resulting oppression of the black majority, implemented by the National Party from 1948 to 1990.Read more: A short history of South Africaag: [agh] Generally used at the beginning of a sentence, to express resignation or irritation, as in: “Ag no man! What did you do that for?”Bbabbelas: [bub-buh-luss] A hangover.bagel: [bay-gell] An overly groomed materialistic young man, and the male version of a kugel.bakgat: [buck-ghut] Well done, cool, awesome.bakkie: [buck-ee] A pick-up truck.bergie: : [bear-ghee] From the Afrikaans berg, “mountain”, originally referring to vagrants who sheltered in the forests of Cape Town’s Table Mountain and now a word for anyone who is down and out.biltong: [bill-tong] This South African favourite is dried and salted meat, similar to beef jerky, although it can be made from ostrich, kudu or any other red meat.Read more: South African cuisinebioscope: A cinema or movie theatre, originally a defunct international English word that has survived longer in South Africa because of the influence of the Afrikaans, bioskoop.biscuit: In South Africa a cookie is known as a “biscuit”. The word is also a term of affection, as in, “Hey, you biscuit”.bliksem: To beat up, hit or punch; or a mischievous person.blooming: [blimmin] A variation on “very”, as in, “That new bakkie is blimmin big.”bobotie: [buh-boor-tee] A dish of Malay origin, made with minced meat and spices, and topped with an egg sauce.boerewors: [boor-uh-vors] Literally, “farmer’s sausage”. A savoury sausage developed by the Boers – today’s Afrikaners – some 200 years ago, boerewors is South African food at its most traditional.boet: [like “book”, with a t] A term of affection, from the Afrikaans for “brother”.boma: [bow-mah] An open thatched structure used for dinners, entertainment and parties.bonsella: Surprise gift, something extra, or a bribe. From isiZulu.born frees: South Africans who were born into a democratic South Africa – that is, after 1994.bosberaad: [borse-bah-raad] A strategy meeting or conference, usually held in a remote bushveld location, such as a game farm.bottle store: liquor store, off-licence.braai: [br-eye] An outdoor barbecue, where meat such as steak, chicken and boerewors are cooked, served with pap and bredie.bredie: [brear-dee] A traditional South African mutton stew, first brought to the country by Malay immigrants. It now refers to any kind of stew.bru: [brew] A term of affection, shortened from Afrikaans broer, meaning “brother”. An example would be, “Hey, my bru, howzit?”bunny chow: Delicious and cheap food on the go, bunny chow is curry served in a hollowed-out half-loaf of bread, generally sold in greasy-spoon cafes.bushveld: [bush-felt] Taken from the Afrikaans bosveld [“bush field”], the bushveld is a terrain of thick scrubby trees and bush in dense thickets, with grassy groundcover between.Ccafe: [kaf-ay, kaff-ee or kayff] The ubiquitous small neighbourhood convenience store, often found on street corners and stocking cigarettes, cold drinks and newspapers.chill bru: Relax, my mate. Take it easy.china: To most people, China is the world’s most populous country, but to a South African it can mean something entirely different. China means “good friend”, as in, “This oke’s my china”. It’s one of the few Cockney rhyming slang words to survive in the country, coming from “china plate” = “mate”.chommie: Friend, from the English, “chum”.cooldrink, colddrink: This is the common term for a soda, such as Coca-Cola. Ask for “a soda” in South Africa, and you will receive a club soda.Ddassie: The rock hyrax, a small herbivore that lives in mountainous habitats and is reputed to be the species mostly closely related to the elephant. The name comes from the Afrikaans das, meaning “badger”.Read more: South Africa’s wildlife wondersdeurmekaar: [dee-oor-muh-car] Afrikaans for confused, disorganised or stupid, as in, “He’s a bit deurmekaar“.dinges: [ding-us] A thing, thingamabob, whatzit, whatchamacallit or whatsizname, as in, “When is dinges coming around?”doek: [like book] A head scarf worn to protect a woman’s hair.dolos: Interlocking blocks of concrete in an H-shape, with one arm rotated through 90º. The dolos is a South African invention used to protect seawalls and preserve beaches from erosion. The name comes from the Afrikaans word for the knuckle bones in an animal’s leg. The plural is dolosse.Read more: South Africa’s wave-breaking dolossedonga: A natural ditch resulting from severe soil erosion. From the isiZulu for “wall”.donner: [dor-nuh] Beat up. From the Afrikaans donder, meaning “thunder”.dop: [dawp] An alcoholic drink: “Can I pour you a dop?” It can also mean failure: “I dopped the test.”dorp: A small town on the platteland.droewors: [droo-uh-vors] Dried boerewors, similar to biltong.dummy: A baby’s pacifier.dumpie: A South African beer served in a brown 340ml bottle.Durbs: The city of Durban.Read more: Head for the Durban beachfrontdwaal: [dwarl] Lack of concentration or focus: “Sorry, I was in a bit of a dwaal. Could you repeat that?”Eeina: [ay-nuh or ay-nar] Ouch! Can also mean “sore”.eish: [aysh] Used to express surprise, wonder, frustration or outrage: “Eish! That cut was eina!”FFixed up: Used to mean “that’s good” or “sorted”. Example: “Let’s meet at the restaurant.” The reply: “Fixed up.”flog: No whips implied. South Africans use flog to mean “sell”, as in, “I think it’s time I flogged this old car.”frikkadel: [frik-kuh-dell] A traditional meatball.fundi: [foon-dee] Expert. From the Nguni, umfundisi, meaning “teacher” or “preacher”.fynbos: [fayn-baws] “Fine bush” in Afrikaans, fynbos is a vegetation type unique to the Cape Floral Region, a Unesco World Heritage Site. Made up of some 6 000 plant species, including many types of protea.Ggatvol: [ghut-foll] Taken from Afrikaans, this means “fed up”, as in “Jislaaik, my china, I’m gatvol of working in this hot sun.” Translation: “Gee, my friend, I’m fed up with working in this hot sun.”gogga, goggo: [gho-gha or gho-gho] Insect, bug. From the Khoikhoi xo-xon.gogo: [goh-goh] Grandmother or elderly woman, from isiZulu.graze: Eat.Hhang of: Very or big, as in, “It’s hang of a difficult”, or, “I had a hang of a problem”.hanepoot: [haa-nah-poort] A sweet wine made from the muscat blanc d’Alexandrie grape cultivar.hap: [hup] Taste, bite, as in, “Take a hap of this”.hey: This popular expression can be used as a standalone question meaning “pardon” or “what”, as in, “Hey? What did you say?” Or it can be used to prompt affirmation or agreement, as in, “It was a great film, hey?”homelands: The spurious “independent” states in which black South Africans were forced to take citizenship under the policy of apartheid. Also known as bantustans.howzit: A traditional South African greeting that translates roughly as “How are you?”, “How are things?”, or simply “Hello”.Iindaba: [in-daa-bah] A conference or expo, from the isiZulu word meaning “a matter for discussion”.inyanga : A traditional herbalist and healer.is it: [as one word: izit] An expression frequently used in conversation and equivalent to, “Is that so?”Jja: [yaa] Yes.jawelnofine: Literally, “yes, well, no, fine”, all scrunched into a single word and similar to the rhetorical expression, “How about that?”jislaaik: [yis-like] An expression of outrage or surprise: “Jislaaik, I just saw Elvis!”jol: [jawl] A versatile word with many meanings, including “party”, “disco”, “having fun”, or just “thing”.Jozi: [jo-zee] The city of Johannesburg, South Africa’s largest city, which is also known as Joburg or Joeys.just now: If a South African tells you they will do something “just now”, they mean they’ll do it in the near future – not immediately, as in, “I’ll do the dishes just now.”Kkasie: [kaa-see] Shortened form of lokasie, “location” in Afrikaans, the older word for township. Refers to the low-income dormitory suburbs outside cities and towns to which black South Africans were confined during the apartheid era.khaya: [k-eye-ya] Home. From the Nguni group of languages.kif: Cool, neat, great or wonderful. From the Arabic kayf, meaning enjoyment or wellbeing.knobkierie: [k-nob-kee-ree] A fighting stick with a knob on the business end. From the Afrikaans knop [“knob”] and the Khoi-San kirri or keeri, meaning “stick”.koeksister: [kook-sister] A traditional Malay and now also Afrikaner sweet, made from twisted yeast dough, deep fried and dipped in syrup. The right-wing enclave of Orania in the Northern Cape even has its own statue to the koeksister. The word comes from the Dutch koek (“cake”) and sissen, meaning “to sizzle”.koki: [koh-key] A coloured marker or felt-tip pen.koppie: [kor-pie] A small hill.kraal: An enclosure for livestock, or a rural village of huts surrounded by a stockade. The word may come from the Portuguese curral [“corral”], or from the Dutch kraal, meaning bead, as in the beads of a necklace – kraals are generally round in shape.kugel: [koo-gell] An overly groomed materialistic young woman, from the Yiddish for a plain pudding garnished as a delicacy. A bagel is the male variety.kwaito: [kw-eye-toe] The music of South Africa’s urban black youth, a mixture of South African disco, hip hop, R&B, ragga, and a heavy dose of house music beats.Read more: Kwaito: much more than musickwela: [kw-eh-la] A popular form of township music from the 1950s, based on the pennywhistle, a cheap and simple instrument taken up by street performers. The term kwela comes from the isiZulu for “get up”, though in township slang it also referred to the police vans, the kwela-kwela. It is said that the young men who played the pennywhistle on street corners also acted as lookouts to warn those drinking in illegal shebeens of the arrival of the cops.Read more: South African musicLlaatlammetjie: [laart-lum-et-chie] The youngest child of a family, born [mostly by accident] to older parents and many years younger than its siblings. The word means “late lamb” in Afrikaans.laduma!: [la-doo-mah] A popular cheer celebrating goals scored at soccer matches, from the isiZulu for “it thunders”.Read more: Soccer in South Africalappie: [luppie] A cleaning cloth.lekgotla: [lek-ghot-lah] A planning or strategy session.lekker: [lekk-irr with a rolling r] Nice, good, great, cool or tasty.MMadiba: [muh-dee-buh] An affectionate name for former President Nelson Mandela, and the name of his clan.Read more: Nelson Mandelamake a plan: devise a way to overcome difficulties. “Leave it to me, I’ll make a plan.”mal: [mull] Mad, from Afrikaans.mampara: [mum-puh-rah] An idiot, a silly person. From the Sotho languages.mampoer: [mum-poo-er] Extremely potent brandy made from peaches or other fruit, similar to American moonshine. See witblitz.Marmite: Trade name of a dark-coloured spread made from vegetable extract and used on bread or toast.mealie: [pronounce mih-lih] Maize or corn. A mealie is a maize cob, and mealie meal is maize meal, the staple diet of South Africa, which is mostly cooked into pap. From the Afrikaans mielie.moegoe: [moo-ghoo] A fool, buffoon, idiot or simpleton.mossie: [morse-ee] Common name of the Cape sparrow, also applied to the house sparrow, and sometimes used to refer to any small undistinguished wild bird.muti : [moo-ti] Medicine, typically traditional African medicine. From the isiZulu, umuthi.Read more: Joburg’s king of muti museumMzansi: [m-zun-zee] A popular word for South Africa.Nnaartjie: [nar-chee] The South African word for tangerine, Citrus reticulata.nappy: A baby’s diaper.nca: Fine, beautiful. Pronounced with a downward click of the tongue.ne: [neh] “Really?” or “is that so?” Often used sarcastically.now-now: Shortly, in a bit, as in, “I’ll be there now-now.”Ooke, ou: A man, similar to “guy” or “bloke”. The word “ou” [oh] can be used interchangeably.Ppap: [pup] The staple food of South Africa, a porridge made from mealie meal (maize meal) cooked with water and salt to a fairly stiff consistency, stywepap being the stiffest. “Pap” can also mean weak or tired.papsak: [pup-suck] Cheap box wine sold in its foil container, without the box.pasop: [pus-orp] An Afrikaans word meaning “beware” or “watch out”.pavement: South Africans walk on pavements and drive cars on the road [at least that’s the idea]. The pavement is the sidewalk.piet-my-vrou: [peet-may-frow] The red-chested cuckoo, Cuculus solitarus. The name, an approximation of the bird’s call, literally means “Peter my wife” in Afrikaans.platteland: [plutt-uh-lunt] Farmland, countryside. Literally flat land in Afrikaans, it now refers to any rural area in which agriculture takes place, including the mountainous Cape winelands.potjiekos: [poi-chee-kors] Traditional Afrikaner food, generally a rich stew, cooked in a three-legged cast-iron pot over a fire. The word means “little-pot food” in Afrikaans.puffadder: A viper or adder of the species Britis arietans. From the Afrikaans pofadder.Rrand: The South African currency, which is made up of 100 cents. The name comes from the Witwatersrand (Dutch for “white waters ridge”), the region in Gauteng province in which most of the country’s gold deposits are found.robots: Traffic lights.rock up: To arrive somewhere unannounced or uninvited. It’s the kind of thing friends do: “I was going to go out but then my china rocked up.”rooibos: [roy-borss] Afrikaans for red bush, this popular South African tea made from the Cyclopia genistoides bush is gaining worldwide popularity for its health benefits.rooinek: [roy-neck] South Africans of British origin, from the Afrikaans for red neck, but without the connotations given the term in the US. It was first coined by Afrikaners decades ago to refer to immigrant British, whose white necks were particularly prone to sunburn.rubbish bin: Alternatively dustbin or dirt bin. Garbage can.Ssamoosa: [suh-moo-suh] A small, spicy, triangular-shaped pie deep-fried in oil. Originally made by the Indian and Malay communities, samoosas – known as samosas in Britain – are popular with all South Africans.sangoma: [sun-go-mah] Traditional healer or diviner.sarmie: Sandwich.scale, scaly: To “scale something” means to steal it. A “scaly person” is not to be trusted.shame: Broadly denotes sympathetic feeling. A South African admiring a baby, kitten or puppy might say, “Ag shame!”, to emphasise its cuteness.sharp: Often doubled up for effect as sharp- sharp! , this word is used as a greeting, a farewell, for agreement, or just to express enthusiasm.shebeen: A township tavern, illegal under the apartheid regime, often set up in a private house and frequented by black South Africans. The word is originally Gaelic.shongololo: Large brown millipede, from the isiZulu ukushonga, meaning “to roll up”.sjambok: [sham-bok] A stout leather whip made from animal hide.skebenga: [ska-beng-gah] Gangster, crook, criminal. From the Nguni word for gangster. See also skelm or skollie.skelm: [skellem] A shifty or untrustworthy person; a criminal.skinner: [skinner] Gossip, from Afrikaans. A person who gossips is known as a skinnerbek: “Jislaaik, bru, I’m going to donner that skinnerbek for skinnering about me.” Translation: “Gee, my friend, I’m going to hit that guy for gossiping about me.”skollie: [skoh-li] Gangster, criminal, from the Greek skolios, meaning crooked.skop, skiet en donner: [skorp, skeet en donner] Action movie. Taken from Afrikaans, it literally means “kick, shoot and beat up”.skrik: Fright. “I caught a big skrik” means, “I got a big fright”.skrik vir niks: Scared of nothing.slap chips: [slup chips] French fries, usually soft, oily and vinegar-drenched, bought in a brown paper bag. Slap is Afrikaans for “limp”, which is how French fries are generally made here.smaak stukkend: Love to bits. In Afrikaans smaak means “like”, and stukkend means “broken”.smokes: Cigarettes.snoek: [like book] A popular and tasty fish, often eaten smoked. A snoek braai is a real South African treat.sosatie: [soh-saa-tee] A kebab, often lamb on a stick.spanspek: [spun-speck] Cantaloupe, an orange-fleshed melon. The word comes from the Afrikaans Spaanse spek, meaning “Spanish bacon”. The story goes that Juana Smith, the Spanish wife of 19th-century Cape governor Harry Smith, insisted on eating melon instead of bacon for breakfast, causing her bemused Afrikaans-speaking servants to coin the word.spaza: Informal township shop.spookgerook: [spoo-ahk-ghah-roo-ahk] Literally, in Afrikaans, “ghost-smoked”. Used jokingly, the word means “mad” or “paranoid”.stoep: [stup] Porch or verandah.stompie: A cigarette butt. From the Afrikaans stomp, meaning “stump”. The expression “picking up stompies” means intruding into a conversation at its tail end, with little information about its content.stroppy: Difficult, unco-operative, argumentative or stubborn.struesbob: [s-true-zz-bob] “As true as Bob”, as true as God, the gospel truth.Ttakkies: Running shoes or sneakers. “Fat takkies” are extra- wide tyres.tannie: [tunny] An Afrikaans word meaning “auntie”, but also used to refer to any older female of authority.taxi: Not a metered car with a single occupant, but a minibus used to transport a large number of people, and the most common way of getting around in South Africa.to die for: An expression popular in the affluent suburbs of Johannesburg and Cape Town, denoting enthusiastic approval for an object or person: “That necklace is to die for.”tom: Money.toppie: Old man.townships: Low-income dormitory suburbs outside cities and towns – effectively ghettos – to which black South Africans were confined during the apartheid era.Read more: Soweto, heartbeat of the nationtoyi-toyi: A knees-up protest dance.tsotsi: A gangster, hoodlum or thug – and the title of South Africa’s first Oscar-winning movie.tune grief: Cause trouble.Uubuntu: Southern African humanist philosophy that holds as its central tenet that a person is a person through others.Read more: An ubuntu Buddhist in IxopoVveld: [felt] Open grassland. From the Dutch for “field”.velskoen: [fell-skun] Simple, unworked leather shoes.vetkoek: [fet-cook] “Fat cake” in Afrikaans, vetkoek is a doughnut-sized bread roll made from deep-fried yeast dough. Mainly served with a savoury mince filling, it is artery-clogging and delicious.voetsek: [foot-sak] Go away, buzz off.voetstoots: [foot-stoots] “As is” or “with all its faults”. The term is used when advertising, for example, a car or house for sale. If the item is sold “voetstoots”, the buyer may not claim for any defects, hidden or otherwise, discovered after the sale. From the Dutch met de voet te stoten, meaning “to kick”.vrot: [frot] Rotten or smelly.vuvuzela: [voo-voo-zeh-lah] A large, colourful plastic trumpet with the sound of a foghorn, blown enthusiastically by virtually everyone in the crowd at soccer matches. According to some, the word comes from the isiZulu for “making noise”.Wwindgat: [vint-ghut] Show-off or blabbermouth. Taken from the Afrikaans, it literally means “wind hole”.witblitz: [vit-blitz] Potent home- made distilled alcohol, much like the American moonshine. The word means “white lightning” in Afrikaans. See mampoer.Yyebo: Yes. Used to show agreement or approval. From isiZulu.Brand South Africa reporter. Additional information sourced from Wiktionary, Wikipedia and the Rhodes University Dictionary Unit for SA English.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

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Break Genre Rules Like a Master Filmmaker

first_imgGenre conventions help film audiences know what to expect, but there’s a fine line between rewarding expectations and making something truly innovative.Cover image via Disney and Warner Bros.Swinging saloon doors, grizzled men drinking whiskey, a lone stranger wandering into town on horseback seeking redemption accompanied by a haunting harmonica solo.Or maybe . . .Galaxies near and far, alien races, floating cities of neon lights, laser gun battles, a cocky ship space pilot, and a hero with self-doubt.Image via LucasFilm.Despite the differences between these two sentences, it’s a safe bet to assume that both of them shaped well-known films — in this instance, a western and a sci-fi movie. But did you picture Star Wars or Guardians of the Galaxy for the second sentence?These descriptions, when combined, represent fundamental generic conventions. These are elements of a film that have been in rotation for decades to help signify to the audience what sort of film they are watching. Further, genre conventions go beyond props and locations. They also include stock characters and plot elements.For example, in a fantasy film, it would be a genre convention to see the hero to initially refuse the call to action, then to later embark on the journey after receiving advice from a mentor. In a romantic comedy, it would be a genre convention for the main female character to have a quirky best friend who is somewhat more stable in her career and love life. In essence, genre conventions are a set of expectations the audience brings to a particular type of movie.Image via Universal.However, does a genre have to include its conventional elements to be accessible? Is a western a western without a gunslinging cowboy? Is a fantasy a fantasy film without the hero embarking on The Hero’s Journey? Conventions offer reassurance, but they can also become predictable and boring; therefore, sometimes, we must get rid of them.Flipping Genre Conventions to Make a Better Genre Film Genre films grew from the early factory-style Hollywood production system that demanded new and exciting films. Using the western genre as an example, with the landmark success of John Ford’s Stagecoach, Hollywood saw the opportunity and seized it: they created more westerns. A lot more. The 1950s alone saw more than 500 western films. With studios that were hungry for a few dollars more, films were largely repetitive but with variants of the tried-and-true conventions.Image via United Artists.Audiences were happy to pay money for a film that they were almost guaranteed to enjoy. The conventions in movie posters and promotional material ensured this. However, there are only so many times one can watch the lone stranger and damsel ride off into the sunset.As noted in this video by NerdWriter1,All big movie genres have life cycles. They are born, they become popular, they exhaust themselves, and then, if they are important enough, they transform.Genres ultimately become victims of their own conventions.So why is it that audiences respond to generic conventions so well? Surely a convention can spoil a film if an element signifies that something is about to happen. Well, actually, one of the smartest ways to use genre conventions is to make the audience think they are going to receive X but instead they get Y.In the video essay below by Lessons From The Screenplay, host Michael explains how Nora Ephron took the genre conventions of a romantic comedy and flipped them to make a film that has lasted.You’ll find that during the height of a genre’s popularity, one film will break the mold to critical success and huge earnings at the box office. But often, that movie has done one of two things. It’s either flipped the conventions like When Harry Met Sally, or it has removed itself from its base genre and become something else.We can see this with Wolverine’s swan song in Logan. The superhero genre is without a doubt at its peak, but earlier this year, fans of the genre saw something different in James Mangold‘s film. It had the core characteristics of a superhero film, but if you analyze the plot and the genre conventions, it’s actually a western. For a wonderful breakdown on Logan and how genre films must adapt or die, watch the following video essay by NerdWriter1.Mangold has the following to say:When Chris Nolan made the Batman movies, they were noir films . . . We’re making kind of a Western . . . For me, the key is not to think about making a comic-book movie but to think about making a movie and just let the fact that your characters are superheroes be a reality. The studio recognized a kind of exhaustion setting in with the formulaic format for quote-unquote superhero movies. While people are coming to see them, there is a sense that people are getting tired. We were very encouraged to try something different.Based on this, you can use conventions to your advantage by creating false images to manipulate the audience. Ed Buscombe notes in his passage “The Idea of Genre in the American Cinema” from Film Genre Reader III a particularly good use of this, in Ride the High Country by Sam Peckinpah:As the film begins, a visibly aging Joel McCrea (star of over a dozen earlier westerns, including the 1946 version of The Virginian), rides into town during a Fourth of July celebration. American civilization has advanced on the frontier, as signified by the brick buildings rather than the conventional clapboard structures of the typical western movie town. A uniformed policeman instead of the singular sheriff with a badge suggests an institutionalized law, while the lampposts and automobiles tell us that historically the period of the Wild West is over.By using conventions that audiences rely on, Peckinpah has manipulated the audience’s expectations, and when they don’t see the convention they expect, it makes them think about how the west has changed. Peckinpah has taken a genre convention and used it as an emotional moment not only in the story but for the genre itself as war films were becoming more popular — it’s incredibly smart.Ultimately, the challenge is to maintain convention but to avoid cliché. A simple idea, to be sure, but a challenge that many filmmakers fail to overcome.last_img read more

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Jayden Channels Grief into Top GSAT Marks

first_imgStory Highlights Jayden, who will be attending Wolmer’s Boys in September, scored 100 per cent in Mathematics, 100 per cent in Social Studies, 99 per cent in Language Arts, 98 per cent in Science and 12/12 in Communication Task. For St. Andrew Preparatory School student, Jayden Ebanks, achieving the top marks for his school in the 2018 Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) is bittersweet.Jayden, who will be attending Wolmer’s Boys in September, scored 100 per cent in Mathematics, 100 per cent in Social Studies, 99 per cent in Language Arts, 98 per cent in Science and 12/12 in Communication Task.While Jayden, his family members, friends, teachers and the entire school community are reveling in his success, there is one person, who is not around to share the joy.His mother, Deborah Poyser, passed away last October after a period of illness, just a month after he started grade six.Jayden channeled his grief into his exam preparations and feels that his mother would have been proud of his results.He tells JIS NEWS that his achievement is for “my mom.”He says he is looking forward to attending Wolmer’s. “I feel good. I am looking forward to going to Wolmer’s because it has a good sports programme and is also good in academics,” he notes.St. Andrew Preparatory Principal, Janet Walsh-Davis and teacher, Phyllis Ramsay, who were with Jayden when JIS NEWS visited the school last week, say they are very proud of him.Mrs. Walsh-Davis, who fought back tears as she hugged Jayden, says she knows his mother would have been extremely pleased as well.“Jayden epitomizes what St. Andrew Prep School is all about – strength of character. Jayden’s achievement means so much more to me than you can imagine. In the middle of getting ready for the GSAT exam, he lost his mom, who was his biggest champion. Everything that you see here is his mom.“When I tell you that she was the best parent, she parented this child, she taught him how to stand on his own, so all of what you see, he did on his own,” Mrs. Walsh-Davis says.She informs that Jayden is a lover of sports and plays football and tennis for the school. She says his mother was very supportive and would be present at every match to cheer him on.“She was involved in everything. When her son was involved in football and table tennis, she was on every bus leaving with all the children. She wasn’t the parent who was just for her son. She was for every other child that was going out; always supportive. It didn’t matter how late they were out there, she was there with them,” she says.Mrs. Ramsay adds that Jayden never missed a class, and would come to her for any information he may have missed during extra lessons that would coincide with sports competitions or practice.“Most times he does his home work before he leaves school. If he does not understand something, he is coming to me and not leaving until he understands. If he has to shed a tear or two, he’s going to shed a tear or two, but he’s not moving until he understands,” Mrs. Ramsay says.“With all of what he goes through…he is the only one from my class receiving perfect attendance. Despite everything he did not miss a day,” she stresses.Mrs. Walsh-Davis and Mrs. Ramsay commends Jayden’s father, Eric Ebanks for his love and unwavering support.“He is not lacking anything… he’s not lacking in terms of support,” Mrs. Ramsay says. His mother, Deborah Poyser, passed away last October after a period of illness, just a month after he started grade six. For St. Andrew Preparatory School student, Jayden Ebanks, achieving the top marks for his school in the 2018 Grade Six Achievement Test (GSAT) is bittersweet.last_img read more

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Of art and consciousness

first_imgKey to understanding the reality of life is being ‘conscious’ about truths of yourself and your environment. The same idea is well portrayed by Shanthi Vatsala Prasad in her upcoming solo exhibition Consciousness. In her paintings she brings about three different stages of consciousness. The awareness of body that is possessed by animals, self-consciousness – awareness about oneself and cosmic/universal consciousness, the awareness of Supreme – possessed by enlightened humans and gods.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Through her paintings she tried depicting triangle stages of awakening, dreaming and sleeping popularly known as, the Jagrut, the Swapna, and the Sushupta. She feels one grows to higher states of consciousness by constantly following a mantra, ritual, yoga etc. and ultimately reaches Turiya state, the Cosmic consciousness. Being a nature lover, Shanthi’s paintings are mostly about the Mother Nature from where we all have come, will live and then go back.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixShe has blended her thoughts well with spiritualism in her paintings of Radha-krishna representing pure love, Tripura Sundari representing pure bliss, Dakshina Murty representing pure knowledge, Nature representing the selfless sharing and nurturing etc. Shanthi’s vision is to transfer some part of her devotion to others and bring peace to their homes. Prasad belongs to a traditional Brahmin family in Andhra Pradesh. Her immense love for nature has given her an edge over her talent in painting. She has been painting since the last 15 years and wants to redefine art as a source of spiritual awakening in human beings.last_img read more

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CES 2017 HTC Wants to Drive the VR Revolution and It Needs

first_img Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals 3 min read January 5, 2017 Register Now »center_img Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right. Entrepreneur is on the ground at this year’s Consumer Electronics Show. Check back for highlights from the event as well as insights from thought leaders and innovators. Today at CES, HTC announced a web of initiatives designed to rapidly grow its virtual reality market. The plan will empower smaller companies, content creators and just about anyone en route to HTC’s ultimate goal — building the largest ever virtual reality platform.While VR’s revolution has seemed stalled for years, 2016 saw some important launches including Facebook’s Oculus and Sony’s Playstation VR. HTC’s $800 Vive was also released last year and reportedly sold more than 140,000 units between April and October. To be sure, that’s not a massive number, which is likely why HTC would want a ground-up approach to boost both its user base and consumer interest in general.Image credit: Stephen J. BronnerRelated: Nothing Matters at CES 2017 Without the SmartphoneThe new strategy is multi-pronged and hinges on content. Some 1,000 pieces of VR content released on HTC’s platform last year, an average of 30 a week, and the company predicts 3,000 titles will release at the end of this year, said Rikard Steiber, president of Viveport, the platform’s content store. The company specifically mentioned it will focus on the education, with apps designed to help teachers visualize their lessons to students, and enterprise markets (HTC did not specify specifics for the latter).To help consumers discover content, which helps developers reach new audiences, Vive will introduce a virtual reality subscription service — “it’s Netflix for VR,” Steiber said.Related: What 4 Experts Expect From This Year’s CESBut the company also needs to expose more people to its hardware. One way to do that is to place headsets in the real world, in what it’s dubbing VR arcades. Any business from a movie theater, a theme park to just anyone with space can start an arcade business. And to help these business owners, HTC will introduce an app store specifically for them.Finally, on the software front, the company said that a mobile VR app store opened today in China. Mobile is the most popular way to first experience VR, Steiber said. Oculus already has a mobile platform with its Gear VR headset for Samsung devices.Image credit: Stephen J. BronnerLastly, HTC announced a piece of hardware called the Vive Tracker, which makes it easier for accessory companies to introduce their products in the virtual space. The device is 10 centimeters in length with a six-hour battery. At the press conference, the tracker was attached to fake guns, a real baseball bat (which it says can be used to train professional baseball players) and a pair of gloves that detect finger movement. Basically, with a sensor attached to the item, it can be easily tracked in the virtual realm. No price has been released but the launch window is set for the second quarter.Finally, responding to complaints from users, the company also announced the Vive Deluxe Audio Strap, which aims to be more comfortable by including headphones in the strap and a dial to adjust its size. It will also release in the second quarter. No price was announced.HTC’s plan shows it knows it can’t survive just on early adopters and gamers. To truly grow, it needs to show the widest swath of consumers the technology’s potential, and this multi-faceted approach looks like a smart way to do just that.last_img read more

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Amazon reInvent Day 3 Lamba Layers Lambda Runtime API and other exciting

first_imgThe second last day of Amazon re:Invent 2018 ended on a high note. AWS announced two new features, Lambda Layers, and Lambda Runtime API, that claim to “make serverless development even easier”. In addition to this, they have also announced that Application Load Balancers will now invoke Lambda functions to serve HTTP(S) requests and Ruby Language support for Lambda. #1 Lambda Layers Lambda Layers allow developers to centrally manage code and data which is shared across multiple functions. Instead of packaging and deploying this shared code together with all the functions using it, developers can put common components in a ZIP file and upload it as a Lambda Layer.  These Layers can be used within an AWS account, shared between accounts, or shared publicly within the developer community. AWS  is also publishing a public layer which includes NumPy and SciPy. This layer is prebuilt and optimized to help users to carry out data processing and machine learning applications quickly. Developers can include additional files or data for their functions including binaries such as FFmpeg or ImageMagick, or dependencies, such as NumPy for Python. These layers are added to your function’s zip file when published. Layers can also be versioned to manage updates, which will make each version immutable. When a version is deleted or its permissions are revoked, a developer won’t be able to create new functions; however, functions that used it previously will continue to work. Lamba layers helps in making the function code smaller and more focused on what the application has to build. In addition to faster deployments, because less code must be packaged and uploaded, code dependencies can be reused. #2 Lambda Runtime API This is a simple interface to use any programming language, or a specific language version, for developing functions. Here, runtimes can be shared as layers, which allows developers to work with a  programming language of their choice when authoring Lambda functions. Developers using the Runtime API will have to bundle the same with their application artifact or as a Lambda layer that the application uses. When creating or updating a function, users can select a custom runtime. The function must include (in its code or in a layer) an executable file called bootstrap, that will be responsible for the communication between code and the Lambda environment. As of now, AWS has made the C++ and Rust open source runtimes available. The other open source runtimes that will possibly be available soon include: Erlang (Alert Logic) Elixir (Alert Logic) Cobol (Blu Age) Node.js (NodeSource N|Solid) PHP (Stackery) The Runtime API will depict how AWS will support new languages in Lambda. A notable feature of the C++ runtime is its simplicity and expressiveness of interpreted languages while maintaining a good performance and low memory footprint. The Rust runtime makes it easy to write highly performant Lambda functions in Rust. #3 Application Load Balancers to invoke Lambda functions to serve HTTP(S) requests This new functionality will enable users to access serverless applications from any HTTP client, including web browsers. Users can also route requests to different Lambda functions based on the requested content. Application Load Balancer will be used as a common HTTP endpoint to both simplify operations and monitor applications that use servers and serverless computing. #4 Ruby is now a supported language for AWS Lambda Developers can use Lambda functions as idiomatic Ruby code, and run them on AWS. The AWS SDK for Ruby is included in the Lambda execution environment by default making it easy and quick for functions to directly interact with the AWS resources directly. Ruby on Lambda can be used either through the AWS Management Console or the AWS SAM CLI. This will ensure developers benefit from the reduced operational overhead, scalability, availability, and pay-per-use pricing of Lambda. Head over to What’s new with AWS to stay updated on upcoming AWS announcements. Read Next Day 1 at the Amazon re: Invent conference – AWS RoboMaker, Fully Managed SFTP Service for Amazon S3, and much more! Amazon introduces Firecracker: Lightweight Virtualization for Running Multi-Tenant Container Workloads AWS introduces ‘AWS DataSync’ for automated, simplified, and accelerated data transferlast_img read more

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Canadians and dual citizens not affected by Trump ban but anxiety still

first_img OTTAWA — The Trudeau government has received assurances that Canadian passport holders will not be caught up in an American travel ban that has barred citizens of seven countries from entering the United States.According to the CBC, Immigration Minister Ahmed Hussen said Sunday that the White House has assured that permanent residents of Canada can enter the U.S. with a valid Canadian permanent resident card and passport from one of the seven affected countries (Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, Syria, Yemen and Libya).United States President Donald Trump signed an executive order on Friday that barred people from these seven countries from entering the U.S. for three months, causing mass confusion and protests across the country. It was initially unclear whether Canadians who are also citizens of the affected countries would be allowed entry, as the State Department said that dual citizens were included in the ban.However, on Saturday night, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau sent an email saying that the U.S. has given assurances that Canadians with dual citizenship will not be turned away at the border.“We have been assured that Canadian citizens travelling on Canadian passports will be dealt with in the usual process,” said the email from Kate Purchase, Trudeau’s director of communications.More news:  Onex paying big to get WestJet and that will send airfares soaring, says CWTPurchase’s email also said Trudeau’s National Security Adviser Daniel Jean and other officials were in contact with their American counterparts, including Trump’s National Security Adviser Michael Flynn.“NSA Flynn confirmed that holders of Canadian passports, including dual citizens, will not be affected by the ban,” Purchase said.Trump’s executive order also banned refugees from Syria indefinitely, pending a review of the application process.Bijan Ahmadi, president of the Iranian Canadian Congress, said he’s outraged by the new policy.“It’s unacceptable. It’s very unreasonable,” he said in an interview earlier Saturday before the situation regarding dual citizens was clarified. “It’s very discriminatory to target people based on their race, their religion, the country of their origin and the country of their birth. And the community has that same outrage.”“Everybody’s nervous, everybody of Somali origin and Muslim origin,” said Osman Ali, the Toronto-based director of the Somali Canadian Association of Etobicoke. “The community feels that it’s a way of targeting the Muslim community, the African community and the black Muslim community.”WestJet and Air Canada said they were waiving cancellation fees for people who hold passports from the affected countries. Air Canada said it expected that only a small handful of its passengers would be affected.More news:  Transat calls Groupe Mach’s latest offer “highly abusive, coercive and misleading”Despite assurances from the Prime Minister, the opposition New Democrats are pressing for an emergency debate when the House of Commons resumes today.New Democrat MP Jenny Kwan wants to delve more deeply into how the American ban affects Canada and how the government plans to respond.Government House leader Bardish Chagger seemed open to a debate, but noted the decision is up to Commons Speaker Geoff Regan.U.S. officials are expected to hear firsthand today how Canadians feel about the ban that affects people from Iran, Iraq, Sudan, Somalia, Syria, Yemen and Libya.At least two protests are planned, one outside the American embassy in Ottawa and the other at the U.S. Consulate in Toronto.The size of the demonstrations is unclear, but American diplomats are concerned enough that they have announced the consulate will temporarily suspend services to the public today.The U.S. State Department tweeted Sunday that American citizens should exercise caution today if they’re in the vicinity of the embassy in Ottawa. The Canadian Press Monday, January 30, 2017 Canadians and dual citizens not affected by Trump ban but anxiety still running high Posted by With file from the Canadian Press Tags: America, Donald Trump Share << Previous PostNext Post >>last_img read more

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Two weeks of France savings start today with Contikis EB2 campaign

first_img TORONTO — Contiki’s 2017 ‘Early Bird 2’ campaign has entered its third phase of massive savings, which includes two weeks of savings on all Contiki trips through France.From March 1-14, clients will save up to $560 plus $150 off all France trips. In addition, until March 31, agents receive a $25 Amazon gift card for every Contiki passenger booked in one of the trips that include the featured destination (in this case, Contiki trips to France and/or journeying through France that are seven days or longer).When agents sell five Contiki trips that are seven days or longer, they’ll be entered to win ‘The Ultimate Contiki Experience’ in partnership with WestJet, which includes a trip for two to Europe with airfare from WestJet, a Contiki travel pack and $500 in spending money.Select trips included in this campaign include ‘MUNCH’, which takes travellers on a culinary journey through Nice, Aix-en-Provence, Barcelona, Milan, Florence and Bologna. There are two limited time departures in May and September 2017. Also available is the week-long ‘European Magic’, which includes visits to Venice, Paris, the Swiss Alps and Amsterdam.More news:  Sunwing offers ultimate package deal ahead of YXU flights to SNU, PUJFor more information on Contiki’s 2017 campaign, go to contiki.com/remember-forever. Tags: Britain & Europe, Contiki, France, Millennial Travel, Promotions Wednesday, March 1, 2017 Travelweek Group Posted bycenter_img Share << Previous PostNext Post >> Two weeks of France savings start today with Contiki’s EB2 campaignlast_img read more

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