January 18, 2020

Meghan and Harry will need taxpayer funded security for years to come
The Duke and Duchess of Sussex will need to be protected at taxpayers’ expense against the threat of terror attacks and kidnap for years to come, security experts have said. police and former security chiefs fear the couple will continue to be at risk from organised terror groups, political fanatics and lone obsessives long after they separate from the Royal family. Talks are understood to be taking place at senior levels over the best way of providing protection for Meghan and Prince Harry as they divide their time between Britain and their new life in North America. But there are fears among some experts that palace and government officials may be underestimating both the potential threat and what is required to protect the couple against it. Dai Davies, who was Head of Royal Protection from 1994 to 1998 and former Chief Superintendent (Divisional Commander) Metropolitan Police Service, said: “We have to learn the lessons of history and act on them. Anyone in charge of security has to think the impossible and then think it again and I fear there is not enough of that going on by the experts currently in charge. “One thing you can be sure of is that terrorists and others who pose a threat are thinking about it all the time.” Mr Davies said the three main threats come from jihadist terrorists targeting Prince Harry, who also served in Afghanistan; lone ‘fixateds’ and royal obsessives; and right wing extremists with an hatred of Meghan as a woman of colour marrying into the royal family. Minister and senior police officers are thought to be determined to avoid the mistakes made over Diana, Princess of Wales, who in 1993 turned down publicly funded police protection except when she was with her sons William and Harry or staying at Kensington Palace. That left her relying on private security at other times, leading to her being in the hands of the Ritz Hotel’s head of security Herni Paul on the night she died when their car crashed in the Pont de l'Alma underpass as he tried to evade photographers following Diana. Her bodyguard, Trevor Rees-Jones was badly injured in the crash, on 31 August 1997. Ken Wharfe, who served as Diana's royal protection officer for six years, resigned from the position in 1993, has since said that if he and his team were working with the Princess in 1997, they may have been able to prevent her death.  Mr Davies, who said there have been far more plots against the Royals than publicly acknowledged, added: “We don't want the situation where Harry and Meghan are being followed, without protection, by paparazzi or people with a fixation and we need to be sure that protection is of the highest level.” But he added that the high cost of providing security may cause resentment among British taxpayers if the Sussexes begin to earn large sums of private income outside of any Royal duties they continue to carry out. “The question is whether the British public will wear the cost of security, even if it is miniscule in real terms, over a long period,” said Mr Davies, who was in charge of protection for the Queen and the Royal family throughout the UK and worldwide. Lord West of Spithead, who was a security minister from 2007 to 2010, said that Harry and Meghan would be expected to make a contribution towards the cost of their security should they start earning a large amount of private income. But he said there was no question that high levels of police protection would have to be provided by the British government into the future. “We have got an obligation to provide security for one of the Queen’s sons and his family and that’s a long term obligation,” he said. “It would be nice to work out an arrangement with the Canadians, but we can’t not provide that protection ourselves, regardless. Mike Penning MP, who was police minister from 2014 to 2016 and went on to serve as justice and Armed Forces minister, said: “It doesn’t matter who they are, if they are at risk we have a duty to protect them, it’s as simple as that. That requirement should be based on any risk assessment made by our intelligence services and by the Canadians.”
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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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