Sleepin investor denies knowledge of SOCU probe

first_img– says ‘vendetta’ afootClifton Bacchus, the owner of Sleepin and a prospective investor in the casino business, has hit back against reports that the Special Organised Crime Unit (SOCU) has him under investigation for money laundering.Bacchus denied he was ever approached by SOCU. He stated that the reports, which first appeared in the State media on Tuesday, were deliberately sensationalised and suggested that someone was carrying out a vendetta against him.The Sleepin hotel“I read with absolute shock the blazing and bold headlines. There was a special effort and a deliberate intent to sensationalise that story. From the article, I learnt for the first time that I, my company and a number of associates are subjects of a money laundering investigation being conducted by SOCU,” the businessman said in a statement responding to the reports.“SOCU has never made any contact with me, to date, whatsoever. As far as I am aware, SOCU has not made contact with any person close to me in relation to the Sleepin International Hotel and Casino Inc.”Sleepin’s Church Street branch has been making preparations for quite some time to set up a casino. Under the law, only three casinos are allowed in each region in Guyana. For Region Four (Demerara-Mahaica), Ramada Princess has one, while another has been earmarked for the Marriott Hotel at Kingston. Sleepin has sought the third one.With a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) made with the previous Government being cast aside by the coalition Government, after being rejected initially by the Gaming Authority, Bacchus had reapplied for a licence.Noting that this application is currently being processed, Bacchus asserted that additional financial information was requested and is being provided to go along with his application to the Gaming Authority.Bacchus was adamant that the documents he submitted to the Gaming Authority establish the source of his capital financing. According to the businessman, his sources of finance include loans from local commercial banks and an overseas investor, which were secured by mortgages.“These documents are all filed as of record with the Deeds and Commercial Registry Authority. Copies have been submitted to the Gaming Authority. If SOCU requires them, I will gladly supply copies to them. However, as I indicated, they have never made contact.”“In the circumstances, it is clear to me, that some highly placed person, in Government, is executing an agenda of malice and vendetta against me with the intention of tarnishing my reputation, stigmatising my business and jeopardising my investments. I am fortified in this view because the Government’s newspaper is being used to do so.”According to the businessman, the situation is causing irreparable damage to the perception of Guyana being open to investment. Bacchus expressed the hope that this was not an official position of a government being uninterested in job creation but interested in publicly humiliating investors.“After all, which investor will want to invest in a country in which they will be exposed to this level of embarrassment, trauma and reputational damage?”In the report, SOCU head Sydney James was quoted as saying that Bacchus and “a number of associates” have been under investigation since July 2016. He had also related that information for financial and other assets was sourced through court orders. In addition, he had said that statutory agencies were approached for “pertinent” information.This was contained in a letter he wrote in response to a letter from head of the Gaming Authority, Roysdale Forde. It was reported that in the letter, Forde had requested information on the businessman, as it was reviewing his application for a licence.It is understood that in order to qualify for a licence, casino operators must prove that they are financially sound. The failure to provide certain documents had been used by the authority as justification for the initial refusal. Bacchus has always maintained that his enterprise is solely funded by above-board sources.SOCU has faced much criticism from the political Opposition that it has not operated in an objective manner, but has rather gone after persons due to political affiliations with the previous Administration.last_img read more

New AntiCorruption unit ready to tackle Govt complaints

first_imgFacebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppBahamas, June 27th 2017 – Nassau –It is official. The Commissioner of Police, Ellison Greenslade yesterday confirmed that a corruption unit within the Royal Bahamas Police Force, “the anti-corruption branch”, is now fully operational. The Commissioner said, “We did develop a unit to look at corruption issues,” adding also, “looking now at 11 separate files originating of various departments and various public operations.”Greenslade revealed that the anti-corruption unit is headed by Assistant Commissioner of Police, Paul Rolle, who will lead a team of several officers including a very well trained veteran detective at the Superintendent rank, as well as an authority at law.The special unit has already begun investigating 11 files, according to Greenslade and charges can range from stealing, misappropriation of funds and corruption.  This announcement also comes on the heels of the Minister of Works, Desmond Bannister’s question to the Attorney General to consider whether legal action should be taken against members of the former Christie-administration for abusing their legal authority.However, Greenslade explained, “when things are just allegations and no formal complaints are made, the Commissioner is in a very difficult position,” expounding on the fact that the new unit is yet to receive any official complaints from Government entities. The unit will focus on the Public and Private sector and is located on Nassau Street, just north of Meeting Street.Story By: Kay-Marie Fletcher#MagneticMediaNews Recommended for you Related Items:#AntiCorruptionBranch, #magneticmedianews, #RBPF Royal Bahamas Defence Force Prepare Hurricane Shelter Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Grand Bahama Police report on crash landing off West End Bahamas Police makes $2.3M Drug Bust in Biminilast_img read more

Phi Thompson lauds Steven Gerrards January recruitment

first_imgPhil Thompson has praised Rangers manager Steven Gerrard for his drive in attracting good players to the club.The retired Liverpool defender says Gerrard has revitalized the era of players returning home to Rangers noting that the arrival of Defoe and Davies will be of huge impact to the club.“My goodness Steven Gerrard bringing in Defoe, bringing in Steven Davies, would they have actually gone there? Or sensed that would have been a good move for them, absolutely,” said Thompson on Sky Sports News obtained via Thisisfutbol.Steven Gerrard, Michael OwenOwen reveals why Liverpool didn’t offer Gerrard a new contract Manuel R. Medina – September 6, 2019 According to Owen, the Reds wanted to sell Gerrard two years before he left the club and that’s why they didn’t offer him a contract renewal.“I’m not surprised (how well he has taken to management) when he did take it, I did think it was a big risk for Stevie, I did say that but I did say if he did go they were going to have to back him because you could see last season between Celtic and Rangers that they were so far behind, player wise.“It was a big gap to turn around and he has done that with a lot of loans he has had to do it but people are now going to Rangers again, they want to go there again, they want to go up there for a challenge.“He has turned it around, Defoe and Davies going up there is like the Graeme Souness era when you saw English talent, yes maybe they’re all 30 somethings going there but at least he is being the attraction.”last_img read more

Stop hatching conspiracies over Rohingya issue Quader to BNP

first_imgAwami League general secretary Obaidul Quader speaking at a meeting in noakhali on Satuday. Photo: Prothom AloAwami League general secretary Obaidul Quader on Saturday urged BNP to stop hatching ‘conspiracies’ centering Rohingya issue, reports news agency UNB.“BNP has been engaged in a dirty game. They don’t criticise the repression of Rohingyas by the Myanmar authorities…they only criticise the government,” he said.Quader, also the road tansport and bidges mnister, was inaugurating a health complex in Kabirhat upazila of Noakhali.“We’re passing through a tough time… just after huge losses caused by massive flood in haors and coastal areas, we’re struggling with over 300,000 Rohingya refugees who fled their country amid persecution. We’re worried how we will bear the burden of such huge refugees,” he said.Quader further said, “We’re concerned for the fact that with the refugees, illegal arms, drugs and local and international conspiracies are also entering the country. We’ve given shelter to Rohingya Muslims, we’re with them but we’re also contacting the UN, the EU and global communities for their help in sending back Rohingyas to their country.”last_img read more

Muhith backs Hasina claim on Khaledas assets

first_imgAbul Maal Abdul MuhithFinance minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith on Saturday backed Bangladesh Awami League (AL) president and prime minister Sheikh Hasina’s claim that BNP chairperson Khaleda Zia has kept wealth in Saudi Arabia.Talking to newsmen after inaugurating a mural of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman in Sylhet Agricultural University, Muhith, also a senior leader of the ruling AL, said Bangladesh Nationalist Party chairperson Khaleda shouldn’t have served notice on his leader, Hasina.Hasina, at a press conference at her official Ganabhaban residence on 7 December, alleged that Khaleda had a shopping mall in the Middle East and claimed that the Khaleda’s family had ‘illegal money’ in Saudi Arabia.Read more: Khaleda sends legal notice to HasinaIn response, the BNP leaders have time and again termed the claim as a ‘blatant lie’ and asked the prime minister to withdraw it and finally on 20 December, Khaleda sent legal notice to Hasina for the latter’s ‘false statement’ about the BNP chief’s alleged assets abroad.Replying to a questioner, Muhith said a legal reply would be given to the legal notice and lawyers would look into the matter.When his attention was drawn to the allegation made by his leader Hasina, Muhith said, “There must have been sufficient proof behind prime minister’s allegation and it’s possible to prove the allegation.”last_img read more

SXSWedu Shows 4 Ways Entrepreneurs Can Impact Education

first_imgMarch 14, 2017 A fascinating realization you make after spending a week at SXSWedu surrounded by teachers, superintendents, provosts and edtech leaders is that the conference is about so much more than education.While the thousands of attendees at the conference each bring shared passions — improving learning, strengthening education outcomes, innovating traditional systems, eating great barbecue — they also recognize the strategies and tools we need to achieve these goals can come from anywhere. The SXSWedu team also knows this, and that’s why they pack hundreds of panel discussions and presentations with thought leaders from inside and outside education. SXSWedu isn’t about insular conversations in academia; it’s about knocking down silos and bringing people together from all different disciplines to focus on how we make learning better, and more available, for everyone.Related: SXSW 2017 Photo Gallery: Our Favorite Photos (So Far)That realization should be remarkably inspiring for today’s entrepreneurs. In order to deliver the next generation of doctors, scientists, mechanics, artists, engineers, etc., education needs new ideas and technologies that span across disciplines. It’s a give-take system of innovation that makes it an exciting time to be an entrepreneur.Here’s a look at four key themes from SXSWedu that can help entrepreneurs focus and take action to enrich education.Technology as a connective forceTechnology is a leading catalyst in eroding the walls and silos that used to exist in education. When I was a student, written correspondence between pen pals far outweighed the nascent connections I had over AIM. Now students and teachers can connect instantaneously and share resources via Skype, FaceTime, Slack and scores of applications, both purpose-built and borrowed intent, to drive dialogue and innovation forward.Entrepreneurs that can find new ways to harness the connectivity provided by these technologies have an opportunity to thrive. One finalist in SXSWedu’s launch competition that stood out in this regard was TeachersConnect, a tool that promises to “lay the groundwork for a world in which teaching is no longer a solo activity.” TeachersConnect is an app that empowers teachers to share ideas, resources and best practices constantly and across geographies to best inform their individual efforts. When a teacher using this network has a question, she can quickly get an answer or new ideas to help students.Apps and technologies that help educators best connect with both peers and thought leaders in real-time will continue to be valuable in the future. It’s an opportunity for entrepreneurs who can take our ever-growing mobile communication tools and leverage them strategically.Related: SXSW: Billionaire Chris Sacca on Tech’s New Business BlindspotRelevancy. Relevancy. Relevancy.A common theme heard at SXSWedu is the need for education to be relevant. Graduating 200 dental hygienists into a marketplace only able to support 30 of them is an example where bigger isn’t always better in education. This need for relevancy is another opportunity for entrepreneurs — what tools and technologies can you create that help educators understand the workforce needs of tomorrow?SXSWedu’s employability track featured a great presentation on this topic, highlighting how job growth in healthcare will outpace overall job growth in our country for the foreseeable future. On a micro level, this is represented in Chicago, where there is a gap between the current market of qualified healthcare professionals and the projected 84,000 healthcare jobs set to come on-line in the Chicago region over the next decade. It’s a statistic that led Malcolm X College to build a new health sciences campus with a virtual hospital specifically equipped to help Chicago-area students take these jobs.Related: SXSW 2017: There’s a Scary Reason You’ll Start Taking Digital Privacy SeriouslyMore institutions in K-12 and higher education are set to bring sharper focus to ensuring the education experiences they deliver line up with employment needs. Entrepreneurs can play a role here on numerous fronts: creating tools that help analyze and predict job trends, developing technologies to better train students to take these jobs or apps that make it easier for educators to connect with professional in leading sectors.Learning by designFor the first time this year, SXSWedu incorporated Learn by Design, a new competition program focused on the design of physical learning spaces and how they impact learning outcomes. The launch of this program is evidence that leaders recognize the growing importance design plays to advancing learning.The program yielded three winners from hundreds of entries: Citti Academy in Los Angeles, the Baltimore County Public Schools’ Mobile Innovation Lab and Lassonde Studios at the University of Utah. All of these projects can point to design strategies that are helping their students succeed. Design was also at the forefront of numerous other discussions during the conference, including a look at Philadelphia University’s NEXUS Learning Hubs — novel learning spaces that are thoughtfully designed to act as the catalyst for pedagogical training, nurturing and experimentation. The NEXUS hubs allow for seamless transitions to different modes of active and engaged learning and optimize collaborative involvement.With design taking a more central role in education, entrepreneurs can make an impact in numerous ways. While schools, colleges and universities are all taking unique approaches to leveraging design, the spaces they create almost always embrace flexibility, technology, collaboration and idea-sharing. Entrepreneurs should focus on how they can introduce furniture, tools and resources that extend these spatial qualities and further empower students.Related: SXSW 2017: The Simple Lessons Reshaping the Cities and Cars of the FutureSeamless job trainingEducation is just beginning to scratch the surface of how technologies like augmented reality and holographics can improve learning. For example, Microsoft recently launched HoloLens, the first self-contained, holographic computer enabling people to engage with digital content and interact with holograms in the world around them. That’s fascinating and powerful, but educators need help understanding how to best leverage it.Creating content and applications that turn the potential of tools like VR and holographics into results should be a major focus for entrepreneurs. It was inspiring to see LlamaZoo as part of the SXSWedu launch competition; it’s a tool that marries highly interactive 3D, augmented and virtual reality, and modern teaching techniques such as adaptive quizzing and spaced repetition to create more collaborative and useful student experiences. More tools like this can prove intensely valuable for education moving forward if and when entrepreneurs deliver them.Amidst the wealth of thought leadership and innovation that defined SXSWedu, these four themes stood out. To host such a rich discussion on education, SXSWedu invited teachers, journalists, scientists, architects, healthcare professionals and more to be part of it — an inspiring reminder that education touches everything. Entrepreneurs should be motivated to launch companies and products that further break down silos to accelerate learning and discovery. Register Now » Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global 6 min read Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.last_img read more