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Sunday, 15 December 2019
Sunday, 15 December 2019 14:28

India ready to set up third rocket launchpad

The Indian space research organisation (ISRO) would soon set up a third rocket launchpad in the country, officials said Sunday.

The launchpad would be set up in the coastal hamlet of Kulashekhrapattinam in the Thoothukudi district, about 648 km south of Chennai, the capital city of Tamil Nadu, Xinhuanet reported.

It quoted officials as saying ISRO has begun preparatory works for setting up the third rocket launchpad.

“The district administration has appointed a special official along with eight more senior officials to speed up the process of land acquisition for the centre,” an official is quoted to have said.

Currently, India has two launch pads at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh.

The demand for additional launch pads has arisen as a result of the increase in the number of satellite launches from India, both for domestic and international customers.

Published in World

International Data Corporation (IDC) has revealed that Chinese-owned mobile company, Transsion, owners of the TECNO, Infinix and Itel brand, maintains top market leader position in Africa’s mobile phone space, leading Samsung, Apple and other sector players.

This, according to the Q3 report, has been the trend since 2017 when the Chinese phone maker displaced Samsung, stripping it of its title as the “biggest smartphone maker” in Africa.

Also, according to the report, Africa’s mobile phone market has seen a rise in the number of units of products shipped into the continent, recording an increase for the first time in 2019.

While figures from the International Data Corporation (IDC) have indicated this rise by 3.6 million units from 52.2 million units in Q2 to 55.8 million units in the Q3, analysts have noted that this significant rise is an indication that more African communities are fast becoming network service colonies.

Going with the trend, analysts see a further rise as more people from Africa will purchase their first mobile phone as the market penetration grows exponentially.

This rural penetration, therefore, explains why feature phones -which are mobile devices with less computerised functions might continue to lead sales over smartphones.

Published in Business

San Franciscans on Saturday handed in 318 various weapons at a gun buyback event aimed at reducing violence and building a safer city, local police said.

“It’s now 318 items turned in, thanks to a last minute drop-off at @up4life,” the police department said, referring to United Playaz, a local violence prevention and youth development organization, after the end of the program.

“The purpose of the gun buyback is to get guns out of people’s homes. We give an opportunity for people who have guns in their homes who don’t know how to get rid of them,” said Timothy Falvey, captain of Southern Station at the San Francisco Police Department, which hosted the event in partnership with United Playaz.

The idea is to reduce crime because sometimes these guns are stolen, he said.

Rudy Corpuz Jr., founder and executive director of United Playaz, said it’s been the seventh year that the program had been conducted to remove guns from streets and prevent people from being killed by “senseless gun violence.”

“Probably over 3,000 guns have been surrendered over the past seven years, and many of them are assault rifles,” he said.

Anyone who turns in a hand gun can get a cash bonus of 100 U.S. dollars and 200 dollars for a semi-automatic weapon, according to the organization.

Corpuz said the gun buyback program in San Francisco is part of a nationwide campaign to prevent gun violence.

Similar events were also held in other Bay Area cities and counties, including Gilroy, Vallejo and San Mateo Country.

Gun violence is a serious social problem in the United States, and more than 37,000 people have been killed in gun-related crimes across the country as of Monday, according to the Gun Violence Archive, a non-profit online archive of gun violence incidents in the United States, Xinhuanet reported.

Published in World

The New Zealand Police said on Sunday that another victim had been confirmed dead in an Australian hospital, making the death toll in the White Island deadly eruption in New Zealand to be 16 at the moment.

According to Xinhuanet, the authority did not release the victim’s name or age at the request of his family.

Police Deputy Commissioner John Tims said that with three helicopters and eight members on board, the united squad of search team left for White island early Sunday morning.

“Unfortunately, we did not locate a body,” he said.

Tims also mentioned that the search operation lasted only about 75 minutes due to the toxic air condition on the island and the oxygen limit carried by the rescue personnel.

Divers’ work under the water was fruitless due to low visibility.

Meanwhile, the process of identifying victims and releasing bodies to their loved ones was ongoing in Auckland. Four more victims have been identified.

According to the news medium’s report, altogether 47 people were on White Island at the time of the eruption on Monday. The eruption also caused multiple injuries.

Many of the survivors still remain in critical conditions.

White Island, a volcanic island, is a famous tourist attraction which people can explore by boat or by helicopter. But now all tourist trips to the island have been suspended by the authorities.

Published in World

- Bags AKIA Best Commissioner Of The Term

Commissioner for Works, Akwa Ibom State, Mr Ephraim Akparawa Inyang-Eyen, has added another feather in his cap, as he bagged the Commissioner of the term (2015 to 2019) Award at the 11th Akwa Ibom Icons Awards (AKIA).

However, the Works boss was among ten other distinguished personalities and institutions, Saturday evening, who were presented with awards and medals for their topnotch services to the State and humanity in general, at the Conference Hall of Watbridge Hotels, Uyo.

According to the Chairman, Governing Council of AKIA; Air Commodore Idongesit Nkanga Rtd, and the Executive Secretary; Prince Baba Owoh Jnr, the award was instituted in 2008 to stimulate fair competition for service delivery, celebrate excellence, bravery as well as performance.

Mr Inyang-Eyen was lauded for his exceptional spirit of enterprise anchored on his determination, courage and tenacity in undertaking bold and challenging pursuits that adds value to the developmental rennaisance of Akwa Ibom State and the uplift of her profile among her citizenry at home and in the Diaspora.

The organizers who expressed optimism that the recognition will encourage the Commissioner to do more, divulged that Mr Ephraim Inyang-Eyen won the contest by scoring 57% of valid votes cast to beat his closet colleague who polled 45%.

Represented by the Director of Geotechnical, Ministry of Works, Mr. Nseobong Edem, thanked God for giving the Commissioner the needed strength and knowledge to translate the vision of the State Chief Executive in the Works' Ministry.

He lauded the State governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel for the opportunity given to Mr Inyang-Eyen to serve the State and contribute his quota towards the development of Akwa Ibom.

While praising the entire Ministry of Works staff and Management team for their unrelenting support which has culminated to the achievements for which Inyang-Eyen was being honoured, the Commissioner's representative said it was heart warming to know that what the awardee has done so far was being noticed by the public.

"This award will surely spur the Commissioner to do more", he submitted.

Meanwhile, the State Governor, Mr Udom Emmanuel bagged the Akwa Ibom person of the year award, while Her Excellency, Dr Martha Udom Emmanuel, was conferred with the award of Akwa Ibom woman of the term.

Others were; Senator Bassey Albert - Akwa Ibom Legislator of the term, Comrade Ini Ememobong as the Akwa Ibom Most Resourceful Youth of the year.

Uyo Local Government Area was adjudged the most Cleanest Town of the year, Chairman of Nsit Atai Local Government Council, Lady Emem Ibanga was the best Council boss of the year, Ibom Air was named the Akwa Ibom Government Project of the term, Nsik Group went home with the Akwa Ibom company of the year, while Watbridge Hotels was pronounced the Akwa Ibom Hotel/Tourism Ambassador of the year.

Published in World
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