Antetokounmpo buzzer-beater lifts Bucks over Knicks

first_imgSuper Bowl a tossup at legal sports books He posted his 16th double-double of the season with 27 points and 13 rebounds for the Bucks, who improved to 18-16.His streak of 13 straight games with 20 or more points is the longest by a Milwaukee player since Michael Redd had 14 in a row in 2006.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSBreak new groundSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC returnLance Thomas did all he could to defend the shot, but after dribbling through traffic and turning, Antetokounmpo managed to make some space and seal the win for a Bucks team that had battled back from a 16-point third-quarter deficit.“I work on that shot a lot,” Antetokounmpo said. “I was patient. I knew I could shoot the ball over the top of anybody at any time. I wanted to make sure I took the last shot.” Senators think TWG’s move to axe motorcycle taxi pilot run an act of ‘revenge’ Carmelo Anthony led the Knicks with 30 points and 11 rebounds, but the Knicks, who were without injured big man Kristaps Porzingis for a third straight game, lost their sixth straight.Rose and Mindaugas Kuzminskas added 15 points each for the Knicks, who have allowed at least 100 points in the six defeats.Greg Monroe, whose free throw with 33 seconds remaining pulled the Bucks within 104-103, contributed 18 points and nine rebounds.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Motorcycle taxis ‘illegal’ starting next week — LTFRB board member Palace: Crisis over ABS-CBN franchise unlikely Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Marcos monument beside Aquino’s stirs Tarlac town View comments ‘Old school work ethic’ pays off for immaculate Federer Senators think TWG’s move to axe motorcycle taxi pilot run an act of ‘revenge’ Milwaukee Bucks’ forward Giannis Antetokounmpo (34) and New York Knicks’ forward Lance Thomas, left, react to a referee’s call in the waning seconds of an NBA basketball game against the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden in New York, Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2017. The Bucks defeated the Knicks 105-104. (AP Photo/Kathy Willens)Giannis Antetokounmpo drained a step-back jumper as time expired to lift the Milwaukee Bucks to a 105-104 NBA victory over the New York Knicks at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday.Milwaukee’s standout Greek forward made the first game-winning shot of his 3 1/2-year NBA career.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite Rodgers again falls short of another Super Bowl stint Antetokounmpo’s teammates mobbed him in celebration, and Bucks coach Jason Kidd said the final moment was a team effort.“The guy who makes the shot gets all the credit, but passing the ball, getting the ball to Giannis is important,” Kidd said.“He (Antetokounmpo) is going to play thousands of games so he is going to have thousands of opportunities to hit game-winners. Tonight, I thought he got to his strength and he took his time. It wasn’t a rushed shot. It shows his growth.”Antetokounmpo scored 12 of his 27 points in the fourth quarter. He came up with a huge defensive play with eight seconds remaining, slapping Derrick Rose’s inbounds pass off the Knicks star’s leg to set up Milwaukee’s final possession.Officials initially called the ball out of bounds off the Bucks, but reversed that decision after a video review.ADVERTISEMENT 15-year-old Gauff stuns Venus anew in first round MOST READ Aggressive Hornets sting Westbrook’s Thunderlast_img read more

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Without Embiid, 76ers upset Griffin and Clippers

first_imgThe Sixers listed 17,591 at the Wells Fargo Center on Tuesday, another stout crowd for a franchise coming off one of the worst stretches of seasons in NBA history. Embiid’s growing popularity has forced the Sixers to at least consider playing him only the home game when they play on consecutive nights.“We are mindful that our fans want to see Joel play,” coach Brett Brown said. “It’s one of several layers that influence the decision on when to play Joel. But it’s certainly on our mind to do the right thing by our fans.”While fans are crushed when Embiid doesn’t play, Brown said other Sixers see his absence as their opportunity to develop and contribute.“I think those type of words come to my mind more than ‘woe is me’ stuff,” Brown said. “That’s not it. That’s not it at all. We wind our guys up and we play NBA basketball and here we go.”Jahlil Okafor missed his chance to start and was held out with right knee soreness. Noel made the most of his first start of the season, and Dario Saric and Holmes were clutch off the bench.The Clippers made 12 of 19 3-pointers in the first half and rolled to a 19-point lead until the Sixers got going in the third.DeAndre Jordan missed four straight free throws – the last one on an airball – that sent the crowd into a frenzy not heard in Philly in some time. Noel finished an alley-oop and Sergio Rodriguez’s fast-break layup gave the Sixers an 87-86 lead.The 76ers rallied from 19 down to win for the first time since Dec. 23, 2014, at Miami.“You get a 19-point lead, nothing’s guaranteed, but you’ve got to secure it,” Clippers assistant Mike Woodson said.TIP-INSClippers: Doc Rivers did not coach the Clippers because of an illness. Woodson ran the team. … Griffin had a shot blocked on a spin move in the paint by Holmes. Marcos monument beside Aquino’s stirs Tarlac town Los Angeles Clippers’ DeAndre Jordan (6) leaps for a rebound against Philadelphia 76ers’ Gerald Henderson (12), Richaun Holmes (22) and Robert Covington (33) during the second half of an NBA basketball game, Tuesday, Jan. 24, 2017, in Philadelphia. Philadelphia won 121-110. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)PHILADELPHIA — M. Night Shyamalan could not have scripted a twist ending from his courtside seat as implausible as this one: The 76ers pulled off a stunner over the 30-win Clippers without injured center Joel Embiid.Nerlens Noel scored 19 points, Richaun Holmes had 18 and Philadelphia beat Los Angeles 121-110 on Tuesday night.ADVERTISEMENT Bulacan inmates, jail guards raise donations for Taal victims LATEST STORIES Ben&Ben, IV of Spades, SB19 win big at 5th Wish Music Awards Motorcycle taxis ‘illegal’ starting next week — LTFRB board member MOST READ NBA: Aldridge spurs San Antonio past Raptors 76ers: Shyamalan wore a “Trust the Process” shirt and visited with Embiid. Shyamalan’s daughter sang the national anthem. Comedian Kevin Hart also watched from a courtside seat . … Brown has yet to #RaiseTheCat after a 76ers win. “The Australians would be proud of it,” Brown said.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respitecenter_img DILG to lock shops in Tagaytay City, other areas near Taal Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Luis Manzano jokes about Mikee Morada’s proposal to Alex Gonzaga: ‘Baka nagtali lang ng sintas’ The Sixers rallied from 19 points down and proved yet again they are now a team trying to win games instead of tank seasons.“We come here, put in the work every day and it’s starting to show for us on the floor,” Holmes said.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSBreak new groundSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC returnEmbiid, out with a left knee contusion, waved his arms from the bench as the crowd shouted “Trust the Process” in the waning minutes.Noel had three blocked shots in Embiid’s spot and the Sixers hit 10 3-pointers to spur the second-half rally. Anne Curtis talks about renewing faith in God amid the world’s ‘noise and clutter’ Palace: Crisis over ABS-CBN franchise unlikely DILG to lock shops in Tagaytay City, other areas near Taal The Sixers are 3-10 without Embiid this season.Blake Griffin, a five-time All-Star, scored 12 points on 3-of-11 shooting in his first game since Dec. 18. He averaged 21.2 points, 8.8 rebounds and 4.7 assists this season, and played in 26 of the Clippers’ first 28 games.Jamal Crawford hit six 3s and scored 27 points for the Clippers. J.J. Redick had 22.“This one’s more disheartening,” Crawford said. “You have to put those games away, by any means. This one’s on us.”Embiid continues to be hampered by the knee he hurt on Friday night. He’s scheduled to sit out Wednesday night’s game at Milwaukee because he does not play in one game of back-to-back sets.ADVERTISEMENT View commentslast_img read more

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Marañon powers Ceres-Negros past Kaya

first_imgKaya showed plenty of fight in front of close to 4,000 fans with Robert Lopez Mendy equalizing in the 55th minute.But Marañon slotted home a penalty after he was clipped by Ref Cuaresma inside the box and completed his hat trick with another fine strike late in the match.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSMcGregor blasts Cerrone in 40 seconds in UFC returnSPORTSBreak new ground“I’m so happy for the win and the three goals,” said Marañon, who was named Man of the Match. “This game was very hard after two losses, but we fought to win this game, and we deserved the result.”Kaya lost for a second straight match as it stayed in fourth while Ceres is fifth. Read Next Ai-Ai delas Alas on Jiro Manio: ‘Sana pinahalagahan niya ang naitulong ko’ MOST READ Swing Out Sister back to PH this April Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Meanwhile, Davao Aguilas secured a third straight stalemate after battling Ilocos United to a goalless draw on Sunday at Davao del Norte Sports Complex. Gerald: Just because I’ve been bashed doesn’t mean I’d stop working KO victory to boost Pacquiao’s stock LATEST STORIES For Ina, portraying a zombie is like an ‘out-of-body experience’ Ceres Negros got its campaign back on track as Spanish midfielder Bienvenido Marañon delivered a hat trick to propel the Busmen past Kaya FC Makati, 3-1, on Saturday night in the Philippines Football League at Panaad Stadium in Bacolod City.Marañon was on target in stoppage time in the first half before adding two more goals in the second half as the Busmen returned to their winning ways after a loss to JPV Marikina the previous weekend and an early exit in the Singapore Cup on Wednesday.ADVERTISEMENT View comments Missile-capable frigate BRP Jose Rizal inches closer to entering PH Navy’s fleet End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend Marcosian mode: Duterte threatens to arrest water execs ‘one night’ A dream fulfilled for Christian 7 NPA members surrender in Isabela provincelast_img read more

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Simpson hoping for CAC boost

first_img “I have a good support system that made it easier for me to be a mom and train,” she said earlier this year. It is not the first time that the 2008 Olympic 100m silver medallist has been required to make a comeback. After extricating herself from an 18-month doping suspension via the Court of Arbitration for Sport in 2014, Simpson captured the Pan American Games title in the 100m a year later in fine style. That victory was a great confidence booster going into the Olympic Games in 2016, but Simpson put her dreams on hold for the coming of her daughter, LeAnna Hudson. “I remember when I won at the Pan American Games, and that was a very big deal, “she said. Simpson, who has a season-best time of 11.35 seconds, is hoping for similar results, but she will have to contend with her compatriot and rising star Jonielle Smith, who is coming off a good showing at the London Diamond League last weekend, where she ran a personal-best time of 11.07 seconds. akino.ming@gleanerjm.com Sherone Simpson knows that a victory in the 100m at the 23rd staging of the Central American and Caribbean (CAC) Games in Barranquilla, Colombia, next week will inject some impetus into her career again. And with this understanding, she is approaching the games very seriously. “I am taking this games very serious. I have taken all the games that I have been to serious, but it would mean a lot to me to win at CAC this year,” Simpson told The Gleaner earlier this week before jetting off to the South American country. “The main aim is to win a medal at the World Championship next year, and I am well aware of what winning here could do towards that.” Before returning to the sport in January of this year, the Maurice Wilson-coached athlete took time off to give birth to her first child, and winning at the CAC Games would be a great ending to a relatively modest first season back. SUPPORT SYSTEMlast_img read more

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EBD Diwali motorcade set for October 22 at National Stadium

first_imgAs Guyanese prepare to celebrate the festival of lights, preparations are underway for the hosting of several motorcades in various parts of the country. For the past few years, the East Bank of Demerara (EBD) motorcade is held a week before celebrations in Georgetown.This year, the Guyana Divya Jyoti Association in collaboration with HUG, will host its motorcade on Saturday, October 22, at the Guyana National Stadium, Providence, EBD. So far, nine Mandirs and businesses have indicated their interest in participating.The well illuminated floats will travel along the East Bank Highway and into the Guyana National Stadium for the grand display and final judging. It is expected the lone float from Timehri, EBD, will join the others at Soesdyke which will then proceed to Diamond where several floats will join the motorcade. After leaving Diamond, the entourage will make a stop at Farm Mandir where the final floats will join.However, at the Stadium, there will be a packed cultural extravaganza featuring skits, poems, songs, dances and most importantly, the distribution of prizes. Those set to entertain the audience will be the Ishara Dance Troupe, the Indian Cultural Centre Dance Troupe, Cummings Lodge Dance Troup and others.In addition, members of the Shakti Sting Orchestra will take the stage by storm. Several of its members will perform live, including Pooran Seeraj, Steven Ramphal and others.Apart from the cultural presentation, there will be sweetmeats in galore along with seven-curry and other Indian delicacies. Admission to the event cost $300.last_img read more

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10th Annual Car & Bike Show and After Party

first_imgLake Mainstay Resort will be hosting its 10th annual Car and Bike Show and After Party on Saturday, April 20 at the Resort’s beach in Mainstay/Whyaka Village on the Essequibo Coast.This year, the cars and bikes will compete in 18 categories. These include best car, best sound, best SUV/Bus, loudest sound, best bike, best classic vehicle, best super bike and the loudest sound SUV/ bus.Registration cost $4000 and forms can be uplifted at Lake Mainstay Resort offices in Georgetown and Essequibo; Gutty’s Variety Stall – Charity; G&P Jaigobin & Sons Supermarket – Henrietta; Cellular Plus Store – Anna Regina; Anil Cell Phone Store – Anna Regina Market; Derick Photocopy Shop – Anna Regina Post Office and Universal Pharmacy – Suddie.The forms can also be downloaded from the Resort’s Facebook page @ www.facebook.com/lakemainstayDeadline for registration is April 18, 2019. The event will see more than $1 million in cash prizes and trophies. However, as it gets dark, Pream’s Mega Sound will take charge of the After Party. The master of ceremony and commentator will be Ravi D.In addition, there will be several exciting games for the kids and more so, food courts and beverage bars.Admission to the event will cost $1000 for adults and $500 for children. The actual event will commence at 18:00h, but the gates will be opened at 15:00h. The 10th Annual Lake Mainstay Regatta is sponsored by Castrol Oil, Banks Beer and Stag Beer.For further information, please call telephone numbers: 592-226-2975, 592-771-4957/59/60.>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>Use pics of car and bikelast_img read more

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Power means…

first_img…never having to say “sorry”our Eyewitness still can’t get over what’s going down in Guyana: “Cry, our beloved country”. It’s become so overused that it’s become trite, but that doesn’t make Marx’ observation that history – and its players – repeating itself any less true. First as “tragedy” but then as “farce”. Not a “farce” because it’s “ha ha” funny, but because it’s clear that most of us never learn. We keep on doing the same thing over and over again – and think we’ll get a different result.Between 1964 and 1985, what we had was a constitutional dictatorship. But it wasn’t erected overnight, was it? And it wasn’t erected at night when we were all asleep, was it? So why are we allowing it to be repeated today in bright daylight?? The UF hated the PPP more than anything and decided to team up with the PNC to throw out those “wicked communists”.They were supposed to keep the PNC on the straight and narrow, but before they knew what hit them, Burnham had bought out several of D’Aguiar’s MP’s and could do as he wanted, when he wanted and how he wanted!! What’s different now with the AFC?? How many of the “AFC MP’s” can Moses Nagamootoo and Ramjattan count on?? We don’t even have to read between the lines??By the time D’Aguiar decided to walk out on Burnham when he saw the preparations for rigging – “too late!!” was the cry. Your Eyewitness is positive that the two cuckolded AFC big-wigs won’t even walk out like D’Aguiar did. These are fellas who’ve succumbed to the morass of hate and greed and can’t even see straight.But worse that the political betrayal – which wasn’t in any way unexpected, since that is the nature of THAT beast! – is what’s playing out in the Judicial realm. Your Eyewitness might be going on like a broken record about the need for the Judiciary to stand firm – but trust him, he knows of what he speaks. Man’s long crawl from the jungle where might was right and the strong ruled the weak, was basically the institutions we invented to ensure that no one person would have sole control of power.In governance, the Americans gave us “separation of powers” which meant that the Legislature and the Judiciary would act as “checks and balances” against the always potentially dictatorial Executive! But in Guyana, the Executive already controls the Legislature and the Judiciary is that last barrier to dictatorship.So, when the President sides with his AG to disrespect the Judiciary, it means we’re on a very slippery slope. We all have to stand behind our young Judiciary!!…embarrassing the Opposition at willOK…A whole lotta people thought the PPP Government played fast and loose with their fiduciary responsibility to the people of Guyana. But this happens with every government, doesn’t it?? We don’t even have to go to other jurisdictions – look what’s happened in only two years of the PNC-led APNU/AFC Government!! And they KNEW folks were looking at them!! But that doesn’t excuse the PPP, does it? Even the two former PPP Presidents acknowledged wrongdoing HAD to’ve occurred (it wasn’t a government of “angels”!) and called for justice to be done.And that’s the point, isn’t it? Justice demands a fella be assumed innocent until PROVEN guilty. But what we’re seeing is a naked exercise of power where the Government is charging ex-PPP personnel knowing fully well, there will be no conviction! It all about embarrassing the “enemy”. Take the law books charges against the former AG? Was that really necessary?And now the GRDB Board. Sheesh!!…taking them for all they gotThe Muckraker spilled the beans on some “Pandits” from India who were bilking (and milking) the gullible natives dry.What about those Pastors over at the old Strand Cinema?? If they’re for real, we don’t need those billion-dollar pharma contracts from ANSA, do we??!!last_img read more

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What a tangled web…

first_img…oil money createsMouth open and story jumped out!!! And what a story it is!! Reporting on this story can make even the most staid family newspaper (like this one!) appear sensational! Here we have the biggest oil find of the decade by the oil behemoth Exxon off the shores of Guyana, which has the potential to be the long-hoped-for game changer for this long-suffering country.All eyes are on the country, especially for hanky-panky by the Government officials dealing with the Oil Major. After all, the world now has decades of experience with countries — especially in Africa — that were  as dirt poor as us before they found oil; and remained so even after TRILLIONS  of dollars of oil was shipped out!! Where did the money go?Some went towards profligate projects for support at the polls, but most went into private bank accounts of Government officials. And that’s the sad truth. And there’s no use blaming the oil companies; if they don’t play the “under the table” game, the countries simply pick another that does! It’s the way the (oil) world turns.But forewarned is forearmed, no? Well…No!! Even with Trotman and Jordan being the cynosure of ALL eyes, they pulled a scam. It’s like the fellas on the street with their “three-card-monte”. Their hands are moving right in front of your eyes, but they still manage to pull off their scam. It all has to do with misdirection; and that is just what Trotman and Jordan did.First of all, they claimed they couldn’t renegotiate the original 1999 contract — which was bull, since that contract had sunset clauses that just happened to kick in not long after oil was discovered. And so Exxon had to renegotiate by 2016. This was sheepishly admitted by Trotman, the Resource Minister — who should be renamed “the Resourceful Minister”!  — when he BOASTED he ‘renegotiated” the Royalty from 1% to 2%!!That fact alone signalled that Trotman was playing footsies under the table! The norm is around 8% to 15% — which translated to billions (US!). So now we found out about the bonus, which Trotman says ISN’T a bonus, but a fee to fight big and bad Venezuela. Are we to believe that to get a PSA on 3billion barrels of oil, Exxon had to fork out just US$25milion??Naaah!! The search must continue to unearth the secret bank accounts of Government officials — in addition to Trotman and Jordan — into which payoffs might’ve been deposited.Remember the US$300 million deposited into the account of Equatorial Guinea’s ruler, BRIG. GEN. Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, in the Riggs Bank in Washington?…the AFC weaves in BerbiceMoses Nagamootoo used his time during the Budget Debate to try extricating his size six shoes from his mouth on the unfolding sugar tragedy. Apart from exposing the correlation between his foot size and testicular fortitude and other allied prowess, it was a pathetic performance. And “performance” it certainly was!The two Berbice estates are already sold, and NOW he suggests “plans” for the workers? OK…it’s true that cane-cutters and their children weren’t born with cane-bundles on their heads, but they certainly also weren’t born with silver spoons in their mouths. So how will they survive to be “trained for oil and gas” when there have been absolutely no provisions for alternative employment?“Oil jobs”? Where are they? Last your Eyewitness heard, there will be employment for only a few hundred at Muneshwer’s East Bank facility — for which they received 4000+ applications!! As usual, Nagamootoo just bloviates! He suggests “cash crops”. Has GuySuCo leased land to the workers?As his sidekick Ramjattan would say, “Haul yuh ass!”…on infrastructureAPNU and AFC berated the PPP on their infrastructural focus, yet adopted the PPP programme when they got into Government. But why the surprise to bemoan CJIA’s delayed and needs more funds?Have they completed a single project on time and on budget?last_img read more

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The banking of the US$18M signing bonus: Is it really an Escrow Account?

first_img– the inexcusability of the series of contradictory excuses in its justification attemptsThe issue of the Government of Guyana receiving a ‘Signing Bonus’ from the multnational oil company operating offshore Guyana was first brought to light by one of Guyana’s most prominent financial analysts. As this revelation was made, the press did not hesitate to grill two of the key ministers of Government responsible for the emerging oil and gas sector.To that end, the respective ministers denied knowledge of such in the first instance, to the extent that one of the ministers, when the matter became exposed publicly, attempted to engage in something called ‘playing with words’ in his response. Then, as it became exposed, it was said that it was not disclosed because of the purpose for which it was intended to be used; that is, for national security reasons.The Head of State himself stated that all the ministers were not aware of the transaction, but the Minister of Foreign Affairs subsequently revealed in his budget presentation that the entire cabinet knew of the signing bonus.All of these positions are, of course, contradictory positions in the truest sense of the word, and this matter is undoubtedly the most highly embarrassing predicament which the Government has encountered — or any Government, for that matter — in the history of Guyanese politics.The manner in which these events unfolded is a clear indicator of grave concern with respect to the internal governance structure of the current Administration. Clearly, there was a breakdown — and to a larger extent mismatch — in communication at the Cabinet level; and some very unintelligent responses were proffered on the matter.With regard to the legality of the process in which the transaction was handled, first of all, the evidence revealed that the Government was in receipt of this fund since September/October, 2016. This means that the accounts for the Government and both National Budget estimates for 2017 and 2018 were understated by US$18 million, since this sum did not form part of the estimates. And therefore this in itself is a gross error on the part of the Government. The act could also be interpreted as being illegal from a fiscal management standpoint. It is worthwhile to note that there is no evidence of anything of this sort that had ever occurred in the history of Guyana’s political economy and fiscal management practices.The Government should have at least informed the National Assembly of the receipt of this fund, in keeping with the constitutional requirements of transactions of this nature, and also in the interest of fiscal transparency. Obviously, this was an unfortunate and miserable failure on the part of the Government. The Head of State, along with the Minister of Finance, nonetheless contended that the funds are kept in an escrow account with the Bank of Guyana. But is this really so? Is the account in which the funds are held an escrow account? The answer is an outright no.An escrow account consists of funds held by a third party; who collects, holds and disburses the funds pursuant to a contract or an obligation between two parties. For example, an escrow account for a home mortgage is held by the organisation that services the mortgage. The funds are paid into the escrow account by the borrower, and are disbursed by the servicer to pay local real estate taxes, hazard insurance premiums, and mortgage insurance. Payments to the escrow account are made by the borrower to the servicer, along with the monthly debt service payments, and the servicer makes timely disbursements of the funds to tax collection agencies etc.In the case of the US$18 million signing bonus, first of all, it is an established fact that there was no reference to any contract or arrangement with regard to the funds being, presumably, held in an escrow account. Dissecting this situation, the leaked letter to the Central Bank which is in the public’s domain, the subject with which it was addressed did not explicitly state that the Ministry of Finance wishes to open an ‘escrow account’. In fact, the letter merely stated as the subject, “Signing Bonus Granted by ExxonMobil – Request to open Bank Account.” So it should be emphasized that nowhere was a request made to the Central Bank officials to open an escrow account, which is in fact a special account.Secondly, the letter of instruction stated thus, “This account should not be treated as part of the bank’s reserves. Instead, the proceeds should be held in the currency of the deposit, that is, United States dollars, and invested in secured-interest bearing securities.”Henceforth, the fact that the Government declared to the public that the signing bonus is for the payment of legal fees for the Guyana/Venezuela border issue is in contradiction to the instructions contained in the letter with regard to the operations and use of the funds. It is against these backgrounds that the Government egregiously misled the public — as it is not an escrow account. There is absolutely not a single feature on the entire matter to validate the claim that it is an escrow account. This is thus a serious adverse political matter – something is most certainly amiss.*The author is the holder of a MSc. Degree in Business Management, with concentration in Global Finance, Financial Markets, institutions & Banking from a UK university of international standing.last_img read more

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The state of borrowing from the bank

first_imgBy SASE Singh, M.Sc. – Finance, ACCAThe economy is struggling, that is an established fact. Over 30,000 jobs were lost since 2015, growth in real wages remains sluggish (just ask the teachers how the negotiations are progressing), and foreign exports accounted for only 40.3 percent of the nation’s GDP in 2018 (the worst performance since 1960). These signs indicate the state of an unhealthy economy.This article looks at the borrowing by the respective sectors from the local banking system, to ascertain who are investing and who are not. The data is sourced from the Bank of Guyana Report – Table 2.13.Overall, borrowing from the local banking sector went up by 6.4 percent as at the end of January 2019, compared to January 2018. This performance was supported by a massive G$3,622 million (11.5per cent) expansion in the distribution and trading sector to G$35,568 million. Sadly enough, this sector experienced the least job losses since Team Granger assumed power. It reflects an unfortunate situation wherein Guyana is now more a trading post than a mecca of value-added production of products. That is a strategy that will surely bring hardship to the people, since it exists at the whims and fancies of the major trading powers of the world, who will set the prices for all products traded. The nation is on a fast track to economic enslavement to the dominant producers of the world. And Guyana continues to import pigeon peas from Jamaica and plantain chips from Costa Rica. These are signs of this economic meltdown.On the production side, there is much to celebrate in the rice sector, and the borrowings from the commercial banks reflect this situation. The rice sector borrowings increased by G$1,868 million (22.9 per cent) more, to G$10,028 million as at the end of January 2019, compared to a year ago. Most of this borrowing occurring at the rice-planting end of the value chain, which means more people went back to the land compared to a year ago. This is good news for Guyana, since it points to a possibility that the rice sector is absorbing some of the employment fallout from the sugar sector, albeit seasonally, at lower wage levels, and without benefits like NIS. This begs the question, how active are the NIS inspectors in monitoring the rice sector to ensure that the seasonal workers are being covered?Another area that saw an expansion of borrowing was the housing sector, for the first time since Team Granger arrived. The Housing Sector experienced an increase in borrowing from the commercial banks of G$1,658 million (18.8 per cent) to G$10,482 million over the period under review (Jan 2018 to Jan 2019). Team Granger finally seemed to have gotten the message that the economy cannot grow without the housing sector doing better every year.On the flip side, the borrowings in the sugar sector declined by G$1,792 million (50.6 per cent) to G$1,752 million in the year under review. This reveals a reduction in the cash flow needs of the sugar sector as the operations contract and shrink. The third party impact across rural Demerara and Berbice is devastating, as I witnessed with my own eyes in Corentyne, East Coast Demerara and West Demerara. The economic energy in all the villages I visited illustrated economic degeneration as if they were in an economic coma. The worst of these villages appear to be in the Wales/Patentia and Canje/Lower Corentyne areas. But my biggest shock was on my visit to Buxton. It reflected an economic atmosphere in regression.The borrowing in the transport sector also declined by G$458 million (9.0per cent) to G$4,620 million over the review period to January 2019. This decline endorses the word on the street that the minibus people are not travelling as they used to in the past because they have less cash in their pockets. Plus there seems to be an oversupply of minibuses in the country. As people experience declining disposable income after rent/mortgage and food bills are covered, we now have a new cash-eating phenomenon, higher utility bills. There is not much cash left to spend on travelling.Lastly, the beverage, food and cigarette sector reduced its borrowing from the local banking sector by some G$447 million (8.7per cent) to G$4,720 million. This is a clear indication that the food and entertainment sectors are struggling as a result of the working class now having less cash in their pockets.The bottom line remains that, for the rest of 2019, the economy seems to be on a slow march as it stumbles along in this period of political uncertainty. The regime is forced to falsely prime spending by borrowing 25 per cent of the budget to artificially prop up Government spending. The Guyanese economy cannot progress without the non-rice agriculture, mining, construction, and manufacturing sectors firing up; and clearly, they are still in a coma. Wither Guyana under Granger!last_img read more

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