Akwa Ibom government cancels 2020 carols festival, blames ‘logistical challenges’
Akwa Ibom government has announced the cancellation of this year’s Christmas Carols festival which was seen as a major tourism event during the festivities. Since it began many years ago, it is the first time, the Carols festival has been canceled as it often attracts top gospel artists and musicians around the world while also drawing world-renowned preachers and evangelists. Previously, it had been reported to be supported by private companies including banks and financial institutions as well as mobile phone operators though the state government has never disclosed the financial contributio...
Israel urges citizens to avoid Gulf, cites Iran threat
The Israeli government on Thursday urged its citizens to avoid travel to the Gulf states of the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain, citing threats of Iranian attacks. The travel advisory comes as Iran is threatening to attack Israeli targets following the assassination of its top nuclear scientist last Friday. Iran accuses Israel of being behind the attack. Israel has not commented. Israel in recent months has signed agreements establishing diplomatic relations with the UAE and Bahrain. The agreements, brokered by the Trump administration, have generated widespread excitement in Israel and thous...
CORRECTED: Japan to give more financial aid for hospitals fighting pandemic
Japan's new economic package will include increased subsidies for medical institutions to help them secure more beds for novel coronavirus patients, a government draft of the stimulus showed Thursday. As for companies maintaining employment despite worsening business conditions, the government plans to extend its financial aid for two months beyond December, with the daily payment of up to 15,000 yen per employee to remain unchanged, according to the document. It will also raise the amount of subsidies for local governments which can be used to assist restaurants that shorten operating hours, ...
Australia passes tough new veto powers over foreign agreements
SYDNEY: Australia’s parliament on Thursday passed legislation giving the federal government power to veto any agreement struck with foreign states, a move likely to anger China and intensify a bitter diplomatic spat between the two countries. The law allows the Commonwealth to block any agreement between Australian states, councils or institutions and a foreign government, such as a controversial 2018 deal between the state of Victoria and China. “Australia’s policies and plans, the rules that we make for our country are made here in Australia according to our needs and our interests,” Prime M...
The Bangkok Post
Gov't to extend travel subsidy program until around June
The Japanese government is set to extend until around June next year its domestic travel subsidy campaign aimed at boosting the economy amid the novel coronavirus pandemic, a source familiar with the matter said Thursday. The "Go To Travel" campaign will continue beyond its original end date in late January as the government sees the need to keep supporting the tourism industry and regional economies battered by the pandemic, the source said. The extension will be stipulated in the government's additional economic stimulus package, expected to be approved in early December. The program, which ...
Saying goodbye to Benny Gantz once the government falls - opinion
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded to Wednesday’s passage of the first reading of the Knesset dispersal bill by reminding the public that politics is secondary to policy.He did this not merely by stating – as he and his key coalition partner, Blue and White chairman Benny Gantz, have been doing ad nauseam – that ministerial rivalries need to take a back seat to the needs of the country as it grapples with the health-related and economic ramifications of the coronavirus crisis. Rather, he highlighted his own recent achievements, both in spite of and in relation to the pandemic.This is ...
Jpost.com - The Jerusalem Post online edition
High Court to Government: Appoint a police chief now
The High Court of Justice late Thursday ordered the government to act promptly to appoint a permanent Israel Police inspector-general.The ruling came one week after Attorney-General Avichai Mandelblit advised the court to issue such an order to the government. No legal official rebutted on behalf of the government.Despite the ruling, it is unclear whether the order will be implemented; the country appears to be heading to a new round of elections, placing the government in a caretaker role.The High Court has received several petitions asking it to force the government to move on stalled appoin...
Jpost.com - The Jerusalem Post online edition
Unions warn government against using Covid-19 to avoid increasing employees’ salaries
THE government has been warned against using the Covid-19 pandemic to avoid paying the R37.8 billion needed to increase its 1.3 million employees’ salaries. Unions representing public servants on Wednesday squared off with the Department of Public Service and Administration (DPSA) and the National Treasury over the government’s failure to increase their members’ salaries by between 4.4% and 5.4% in April. The Labour Appeal Court heard that the government should not have waited until this year to challenge the validity of the three-year agreement signed in 2018. Advocate Ngwako Maenetje SC, on ...
Bangladesh: Halt Rohingya Relocations to Remote Island
https://www.hrw.org/sites/default/files/media_2020/09/202009asia_bangladesh_bhasan_char.jpg (New York) – The Bangladesh government should immediately halt imminent relocations of Rohingya refugees to remote Bhasan Char island, Human Rights Watch said today. The authorities have reportedly prepared a list of 4,000 Rohingya refugees to be relocated, beginning with transfers to the port city of Chattogram on December 3, 2020. The Bangladesh government should commit to a transparent relocation process, fully informed consent of transferred refugees and freedom of movement on and off the island, an...
Human Rights Watch - News
JSCCIB asks for stimulus continuation
Joint Standing Committee on Commerce, Industry and Banking (JSCCIB) is urging the government to extend its economic stimulus campaigns for 3-6 months to continue ongoing efforts to boost spending.The call is being made as the economy has not fully recovered in the wake of the pandemic.The JSCCIB says the country still needs fiscal-monetary injections, even though experts believe the economy will get better next year.JSCCIB member and Federation of Thai Industries chairman Supant Mongkolsuthree said the panel wants the government to use the stimulus packages as a tool to drive the economy forwa...
The Bangkok Post