January 02, 2020
The fire mercilessly tore through Cobargo, a small town near the coast in southern New South Wales, on Monday night, burning down the main street and killing two people, a father and son, caught in its destructive path.
Australian PM Scott Morrison cuts visit of fire-hit residents short amid mounting frustration
Residents of the ravaged town were angry, their homes and livelihood suddenly incinerated in a fiery flash. On Thursday, they vented that frustration at visiting Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, who cut short his tour of the fire-hit residents amid their barrage of criticism.
“How come we only had four trucks to defend our town? Because our town doesn’t have a lot of money, but we have hearts of gold, prime minister,” one woman in a Led Zeppelin T-shirt walking a goat shouted at the prime minister.
“What about the people who are dead, prime minister,” she said later, her voice raw with emotion. “What about the people who have nowhere to live?” “You won’t be getting any votes down here buddy,” shouted another angry man. “No Liberal (Party) votes — you’re out, son.”
One resident glared at Morrison as she told him that she wouldn’t shake his hand unless he provided more funds for those who have lost their homes and for Australia’s fire service, which relies primarily on volunteers. “We need more help,” she added as he moved on.
“Nah, you’re an idiot, mate. You really are,” sneered a resident to someone in the prime minister’s entourage trying to talk to him.
As Morrison headed to his car, one Cobargo resident had the final say.
“You’re not welcome here,” he shouted, calling him an expletive.
“This is not fair,” people shouted at the departing prime minister. “We are totally forgotten down here. Every single time this area gets a flood or a fire we get nothing ... If we lived in Sydney or on the North Coast we would be flooded with donations and emergency relief.”
Australian PM Scott Morrison cuts visit of fire-hit residents short amid mounting frustration
Australian PM Scott Morrison cuts visit of fire-hit residents short amid mounting frustration
Since September, the bush fires have killed 18 people and destroyed over 1,200 homes in New South Wales and the adjacent Victoria state. Just this week, at least another 17 people in these areas were reported missing. In the latest crisis, some 4,000 people are now trapped in a beach town in Victoria, unable to escape because of advancing fires. The government has in turn declared a state of emergency there for the first time.
Overall, the deadly fires have burned more than 14.6 million acres — an area larger than the combined territories of Belgium and Haiti.
Bush fires are a yearly occurrence in parts of dry Australia. But climate scientists have tied the longevity and severity of this year’s fires to climate change in a country that relies heavily on carbon-producing industries like coal. The fires began earlier than average, and heat waves in the fall and winter made for even more combustible conditions. December was one of two hottest months on record in Australia and 2019 the hottest and driest year yet. Dec. 18 ominously marked Australia’s hottest day ever, beating out the record set the day before.
Australian PM Scott Morrison cuts visit of fire-hit residents short amid mounting frustration
Australian PM Scott Morrison cuts visit of fire-hit residents short amid mounting frustration
Images of row after row of destroyed buildings coupled with darkened or apocalyptic-like red-orange skies have not played well for Australia’s conservative prime minister.
“I understand the very strong feelings people have. They’ve lost everything, and there are still some very dangerous days ahead,” Morrison told Australia’s ABC News broadcaster in response to the heckling. “My job is to ensure that we steady things through these very difficult days and support the states in the response that they are providing.”
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Star Wars Director Says It's About Time A Woman Makes A Star Wars Movie
Jan 02, 2024
Oscar-winning documentary filmmaker Sharmeed Obaid-Chinoy is directing an upcoming Star Wars movie that brings back Daisy Ridley in the role of Rey. Obaid-Chinoy will become the first woman to direct a Star Wars film, dating back to the franchise's origins in the 1970s. Speaking about this, Obaid-Chinoy told CNN that she is "very thrilled" to make the movie and create something that is "very special.""We're in 2024 now, and I think it's about time we had a woman come forward to shape the story in a galaxy far, far away," she said.Obaid-Chinoy won Best Documentary, Short Subjects Academy Awards for Saving Face (2012) and A Girl in the River: The Price of Forgiveness (2015).In 2020, Lucasfilm boss Kathleen Kennedy told the BBC that a woman would eventually direct a Star Wars movie, saying that would "absolutely" happen, "without question." Victoria Mahoney was a second unit director on The Rise of Skywalker, but a woman has never claimed a top directing credit on a Star Wars movie.On the TV side of things, The Mandalorian has featured a number of female directors, including Deborah Chow and Bryce Dallas Howard. Chow went on to direct the Obi-Wan TV series, too.Another high-profile franchise that has never had a female director is James Bond. Producer Barbara Broccoli and Skyfall director Sam Mendes have both said they want to see a woman direct a future 007 film.As for Obaid-Chinoy's Star Wars movie, little is known about it apart from the fact that Ridley will come back to play Rey. It is expected that this film will be the first of the three new Star Wars films to come to theaters, possibly releasing in December 2025.According to a report, Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight is writing the Rey movie, taking over for Damon Lindelof and Justin Britt-Gibson.
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NBA Names Clare Akamanzi CEO Of NBA Africa
Jan 02, 2024 15:29
The NBA named Clare Akamanzi – an accomplished business executive and international trade and investment lawyer – as CEO of NBA Africa. Akamanzi will start her position on Jan. 23, 2024, and report to NBA Deputy Commissioner and Chief Operating Officer Mark Tatum. In this role, Akamanzi will oversee the NBA’s business and basketball development efforts in Africa and will be responsible for continuing to grow the popularity of basketball, the NBA and the Basketball Africa League (BAL) across the continent, including through grassroots basketball development, media distribution, corporate partnerships, and social responsibility initiatives that improve the livelihoods of African youth and families. For the last six and a half years, Akamanzi was CEO of Rwanda Development Board (RDB), where she spearheaded Rwanda’s economic development by enabling private sector growth. Under Akamanzi’s leadership, RDB implemented several business policy reforms and initiatives that led to significant investment and development for the country, including through partnerships with the BAL, Arsenal FC, Paris Saint-Germain FC, FC Bayern Munich and TIME Magazine, among others. “Clare’s business acumen, international experience and familiarity with basketball and the NBA make her the ideal executive to lead our business in Africa,” says Tatum. “NBA Africa and the Basketball Africa League are well-positioned for continued growth, and under Clare’s leadership we believe these initiatives will transform economies, communities and lives across the continent.” “I’ve seen firsthand how sports can positively impact businesses, families and communities in Africa, and the NBA and the BAL are a perfect example of that,” says Akamanzi. “The NBA has done an incredible job growing basketball and the economy around it across the continent, and I’m excited about the enormous opportunities ahead to build on that momentum.” Previously, Akamanzi was Chief Operating Officer of RDB and Head of Strategy and Policy Unit, Office of the President of the Republic of Rwanda. She has extensive international trade, business and diplomatic experience, having previously worked for the Rwandan Government at the World Trade Organization in Geneva, Switzerland and at the Rwandan Embassy in London, England. Akamanzi has worked or studied in seven different countries and holds an honorary LLD from Concordia University in Montreal, Canada, in recognition of her work in Rwanda. She earned a master’s degree in public administration from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she was the recipient of three prestigious awards for academic excellence and distinguished contribution to the community: the Lucius N. Littauer Fellows Award, the Raymond & Josephine Vernon Award and the Robert Kennedy Public Service Award. In addition, Akamanzi holds a Master of Laws degree in international trade and investments from the University of Pretoria in South Africa, and a Bachelor of Laws degree from Makerere University in Kampala, Uganda. Akamanzi has served on several company boards, including the World Health Organization (WHO) Foundation, ECOBANK and Aviation, Travel and Logistics (ATL) company. She was recognized by Forbes as one of Africa’s Top 50 Powerful Women in 2020.
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