Friday, 30 January 2015

African leaders meet in Addis for conflict, Ebola talks.Drive Hot News

 President Uhuru Kenyatta and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta arrive in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, for the 24th Ordinary Session of the Assembly of Heads of States and Governments of the AU. The meeting will discuss, among other things, conflict and the Ebola crisis. PHOTO

African leaders meet Friday for their annual summit with conflict topping the agenda, especially Nigeria's Boko Haram insurgents, as well as efforts to stem the Ebola virus.
While the official theme of the African Union meeting will be women's empowerment, leaders from the 54-member bloc will once again be beset by a string of crises across the continent.
Preparatory talks this week ahead of the two-day meeting at the AU headquarters in the Ethiopian capital have seen promises by AU chief Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to drum up "collective African efforts" to tackle the Islamists.
Late Thursday, the AU Peace and Security Council called for regional five-nation force of 7,500 troops to deploy to stop the "horrendous" rise of the insurgents.
More than 13,000 people have been killed and more than one million made homeless by Boko Haram violence since 2009.
Leaders are also expected to elect Zimbabwe's President Robert Mugabe to the organisation's one-year rotating chair, replacing Mauritania's President Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz.
Mugabe, a former liberation war hero aged 90 is Africa's oldest president and the third-longest serving leader, is viewed with deep respect by many on the continent.
But he is also subject to travel bans from both the United States and European Union in protest at political violence and intimidation.
With over a dozen elections due to take place this year across Africa, the focus at the talks will also be on how to ensure peaceful polls.
The Institute for Security Studies, an African think-tank, warns that "many of these are being held in a context that increases the risk of political violence".
Wars in South Sudan and the Central African Republic — both nations scheduled to hold elections — as well as in Libya are also due to draw debate.
South Sudan's warring parties met Thursday in the latest push for a lasting peace deal, with six previous ceasefire commitments never holding for more than a few days — and sometime just hours — on the ground.
Tens of thousands of people have been killed in more than a year of civil war, with peace talks led by the regional East African bloc Igad due following the summit.
Also topping the agenda is the question of financing regional forces, amid broader debates on funding the AU, a thorny issue for the bloc, once heavily bankrolled by toppled Libyan strongman Muamar Gaddafi.
African leaders will also discuss the economic recovery of countries affected by the Ebola virus, setting up a "solidarity fund" and planning a proposed African Centre for Disease Control.
The worst outbreak of the virus in history has seen nearly 9,000 deaths in a year — almost all of them in the three west African countries of Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone — and sparked a major health scare worldwide.

Saccos to face tighter regulation in new law.Double click and read more....

Savings and credit organisations will be regulated under the Micro Deposit Taking Institutions (MDI) Act, 2003, once Cabinet approves and Parliament endorses amendments to the law, according to Bank of Uganda.
The move is meant to safeguard the financial deposits of an estimated 620,000 customers.
“The prudential regulation of these Saccos is still wanting. So there are no safeguards for members’ deposits,” Mr Benedict K Ssekabira, the Bank of Uganda’s director commercial banking, said during the National Microfinance Conference in Kampala yesterday.
“We have proposed changes to the MDI Act, which is now before the First Parliamentary Counsel. We want the large Saccos to be licenced under the MDI Act. They will be called financial cooperatives,” Mr Ssekabira added.
However, Mr Ezra Suruma, an economist, said he would not like to see some Saccos that he witnessed starting closed down or sold off in the process of regulating.
“I am not sure that the Saccos that are big should come into the control of the Bank of Uganda. The MDI law says you can’t own more than 30 per cent of an entity. So, if such an institution will come under the MDI law, Mr Ssekabira will say that we have to sell off 70 per cent of our shares. If there are no Ugandans who will afford [to buy what we will be forced to sell] we will externalise, and that wouldn’t be a good idea,” Mr Suruma said.
Mr Fred Muhumuza, a senior partner at KPMG audit firm, said although the regulation and supervision was supposed to maintain integrity and soundness of financial institutions to increase the public’s confidence in the quality of services, there could be trade-offs.
“Regulations come with a cost, and, therefore restrictions on the number of providers and outlets. Many people are not able to meet the cost of regulation and so they do not become participants,” Mr Muhumuza said.
He said to balance the tradeoffs in order not to compromise access and quality, “we need to be clear on what language goes into the law and what language goes into the regulations. The laws are harder to deal with; they are harder to adjust”.
“With regulations, you can respond any time; at least at shorter intervals you have more flexibility to responding even to emerging challenges,” Mr Muhumuza said.
Other proposals
Mr Benedict Ssekabira said another proposed change to the MDI Act would be to approve small business proprietors to be contracted by banks to undertake transactions on behalf of the banks.

Thursday, 29 January 2015

Colleen McCullough, The Thorn Birds author, dies at 77.Drive Hot News

Colleen McCullough
 Colleen McCullough wrote 25 novels during her career.

Australian author Colleen McCullough, whose best-selling novel The Thorn Birds became a hit TV series, has died at the age of 77.
The best-selling writer died in hospital on Norfolk Island on Thursday afternoon, publisher HarperCollins Australia confirmed.
McCullough had suffered poor health in recent years, losing her sight and suffering crippling arthritis.
However, she continued her writing through dictation.
Shona Martyn, of Harper Collins Australia, paid tribute to McCullough, citing her as "one of the first Australian writers to succeed on the world stage".
"Ever quick-witted and direct, we looked forward to her visits from Norfolk Island and the arrival of each new manuscript, delivered in hard copy, in custom-made maroon manuscript boxes inscribed with her name," said Martyn.
"The world is a less colourful place without Col."
Australian broadcaster Richard Glover tweeted: "RIP Colleen McCullough. I can't think of anyone who took such a miserable childhood and turned [it] into a life of such luminous achievement."
Author . "So sad to hear of the passing of Colleen McCullough. She was fierce, funny and so supportive of other writers. Irreplaceable. RIP Colleen."
McCullough wrote 25 novels throughout her career.
Colleen McCullough Colleen McCullough continued to write using dictation despite poor health
She penned her first book, Tim, while living in America. It was later made into a 1979 film starring Mel Gibson.
Her second novel, 1977's The Thorn Birds, became an international bestseller.
A story of forbidden love between a young woman and a priest in the Australian outback, the paperback rights sold for a then-record $1.9 million (£1.25m).
It was turned into a popular television mini-series in 1983, starring Richard Chamberlain and Rachel Ward.
Her last book, Bittersweet, was published in 2013.
McCullough was born in Wellington, New South Wales and spent most of her early life in Sydney.
Before turning to writing, she studied medicine both in Australia and overseas, establishing the neurophysiology department at the Royal North Shore hospital in Sydney.
She went on to spend 10 years as a researcher at Yale medical school in the US.
The author leaves behind husband Ric Robinson.
"Colleen McCullough's contribution to Australian writing - and to readers around the world - has been immense," said Martyn.
"We will miss her dearly."

Taylor Swift trademarks 'sick beat'.Drive Hot News

Taylor Swift
 The star is likely to apply the phrases to her own range of merchandise.

Pop star Taylor Swift has trademarked phrases including "this sick beat" and "we never go out of style", in the United States.
The phrases are all lyrics from her current album, 1989, which has sold more than 4 million copies in the US.
The trademark ruling prohibits others from using her lyrics on items such as t-shirts, stickers and bags.
Other phrases covered by the ruling include "nice to meet you, where you been" and "party like it's 1989".
Her name, signature and initials have also received trademark protection.
Although the application may seem trivial, printing lyrics onto merchandise is an increasingly important revenue stream for musicians in an era of declining record sales.

S. Sudan president Kiir rushed to Ethiopian hospital

S. Sudan president Kiir rushed to Ethiopian hospital 
 South Sudan president Salva Kiir.
 South Sudanese president Salva Kiir was rushed to hospital in the Ethiopian Capital, Addis Ababa, on Wednesday after he fell ill during a meeting.

Kiir arrived in Addis Ababa on Tuesday to attend the 24th ordinary session of the assembly of head of states and government of the African Union (AU).

He was also expected to attend the Intergovernmental Authority on Development’s (IGAD) leaders summit due to kick off on Thursday to discuss the ongoing conflict in South Sudan.

Kiir’s sudden illness interrupted a meeting between the president and rebel leader Riek Machar, which was being hosted by Ethiopian prime minister and IGAD chairperson Hailemariam Desalegn ahead of the leaders summit, which was due to be held on the side lines of the AU assembly.

The direct talks were aimed at securing an agreement between the rival leaders on a series of contentious issues, particularly on the structure of the agreed interim government.

The meeting was also being held to brief African leaders on the progress of the IGAD-led mediation process and to reports on the outcome of consultation meetings between the government and rebel faction held in Juba and Pagak during the recess.

An IGAD source later told Sudan Tribune that president Kiir had suffered a nosebleed brought on by “stress”.

As a result, IGAD was forced to cancel the meeting between the two rival leaders.

IGAD has also been forced to delay the regional leaders meeting.

IGAD officials told Sudan Tribune that if Kiir’s condition does not improve by Thursday, the leaders summit may have to be postponed indefinitely.

According to medical doctor Yonas Yohannes, one of the main causes of non-trauma induced nosebleeds is an increase in blood pressure caused by either stress, excessive consumption of alcohol, dry climate or heavy smoking.

However, he cautioned that the causes of Kiir’s illness could not be properly determined without a thorough medical examination.

Facebook beats forecasts with strong profit gains Publish Date: Jan 29, 2015.Drive Hot News

Facebook beats forecasts with strong profit gains 
 SAN FRANCISCO - Facebook has said that profit soared on the wings of mobile ad revenue but stresses it is more concerned with investing in the future than making quick cash.
While earnings figures surpassed market forecasts, Facebook executives strived to temper expectations, while stressing they plan to continue aggressively investing to achieve long-range goals.

Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg described 2014 as a year of heavy investments, with "big bets" placed on mobile communication and next-generation computing with multibillion-dollar buys of WhatsApp and the Oculus virtual reality startup.

Ranks of employees surged 45 percent last year and the company plans to continue bringing on new talent, executives said.

A strong showing in ads served up on smartphones or tablet computers helped Facebook earnings beat analyst forecasts: profit in the final three months of last year jumped to $696 million as revenue surged to $3.85 billion.

But investors will be concerned by an 87 percent rise in costs and expenses.

Shares sank slightly, more than one percent to $75.05, in after-market trades that followed release of the figures.

Despite claims from competitors that Facebook is losing relevance with a younger audience the number of people using the leading social network monthly climbed to 1.39 billion.


Zuckerberg told financial analysts the company was focused on serving the entire world with projects such as, and that would require a lot of effort and investing over a course of years.

One analyst challenged Zuckerberg to explain why he thinks investors care about connecting the world when the expense of bringing Internet service to more people in developing countries appears greater than the potential return.

"It matters to the kinds of investors we want to have because we are a very mission-driven company," Zuckerberg replied.

"If we were only focused on making money, we might put all our energy into ads for people in the US and other developed countries, but that is not just what we care about here."

Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg described 2014 as a year of heavy investments. (AFP)

He reasoned that if Facebook becomes a main online platform in developing countries, it will benefit over time as economies improve in those parts of the world.

Gartner analyst Brian Blau said that while Zuckerberg's position was noble, it is backed by business strategy.

"Zuckerberg has a good track record of getting a vision, sticking to it and executing on it," Blau told AFP.

"So if he really believes in this, he must have the resources to make it happen. It is a very long-term bet, and if he succeeds Facebook will be a social connector for people around the world."

Facebook is testing a lightweight version of its mobile app for mobile phones with poor-quality Internet connections in emerging markets.

A spokesman told AFP that the "Facebook Lite" Android app is designed "for people on 2G (second-generation) connections or in areas of limited Internet accessibility."

Most of Facebook's growth is coming from emerging markets, but many people lack the phones or computers needed for the full-featured app.

Advertising, mobile
Notably, Facebook saw its first quarter of taking in more than $3 billion overall from ads, with about two-thirds of that coming from mobile advertising revenue, which soared 69 percent from the same period a year earlier

Facebook said that its properties Instagram, Messenger and WhatsApp recently topped 300 million, 500 million, and 700 million monthly active users respectively.

For the full year, Facebook's profit nearly doubled to $2.9 billion and revenue jumped 58 percent to $12.8 billion.

Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Ebola outbreak: Virus mutating, scientists warn.Drive Hot News

Ebola virus research
 Hundreds of blood samples are being analysed to keep track of the virus.

Scientists tracking the Ebola outbreak in Guinea say the virus has mutated.
Researchers at the Institut Pasteur in France, which first identified the outbreak last March, are investigating whether it could have become more contagious.
More than 22,000 people have been infected with Ebola and 8,795 have died in Guinea, Sierra Leone and Liberia.
Scientists are starting to analyse hundreds of blood samples from Ebola patients in Guinea.
They are tracking how the virus is changing and trying to establish whether it's able to jump more easily from person to person
"We know the virus is changing quite a lot," said human geneticist Dr Anavaj Sakuntabhai.

It's not unusual for viruses to change over a period time. Ebola is an RNA virus - like HIV and influenza - which have a high rate of mutation. That makes the virus more able to adapt and raises the potential for it to become more contagious.
"We've now seen several cases that don't have any symptoms at all, asymptomatic cases," said Anavaj Sakuntabhai.
"These people may be the people who can spread the virus better, but we still don't know that yet. A virus can change itself to less deadly, but more contagious and that's something we are afraid of."
But Professor Jonathan Ball, a virologist at the University of Nottingham, says it's still unclear whether more people are actually not showing symptoms in this outbreak compared with previous ones.
"We know asymptomatic infections occur… but whether we are seeing more of it in the current outbreak is difficult to ascertain," he said.
"It could simply be a numbers game, that the more infection there is out in the wider population, then obviously the more asymptomatic infections we are going to see."
Member of MSF at isolation ward in Conakry, Guinea. 29 June 2014 The current outbreak began in south-eastern Guinea and spread to Liberia and Sierra Leone
Another common concern is that while the virus has more time and more "hosts" to develop in, Ebola could mutate and eventually become airborne.
There is no evidence to suggest that is happening, however. The virus is still only passed through direct contact with infected people's body fluids.
"At the moment, not enough has been done in terms of the evolution of the virus both geographically and in the human body, so we have to learn more. But something has shown that there are mutations," said Institut Pasteur virologist Noel Tordo.
"For the moment the way of transmission is still the same. You just have to avoid contact (with a sick person)"
"But as a scientist you can't predict it won't change. Maybe it will."
Researchers are using a method called genetic sequencing to track changes in the genetic make-up of the virus. So far they have analysed around 20 blood samples from Guinea. Another 600 samples are being sent to the labs in the coming months.
A previous similar study in Sierra Leone showed the Ebola virus mutated considerably in the first 24 days of the outbreak, according to the World Health Organization.
It said: "This certainly does raise a lot of scientific questions about transmissibility, response to vaccines and drugs, use of convalescent plasma.
"However, many gene mutations may not have any impact on how the virus responds to drugs or behaves in human populations."

Easy ways to get your home organised .Drive Hot News

If your can, have an analogue clock in each room, and preferably those with alarm features. FOTOSEARCH
 If your can, have an analogue clock in each room, and preferably those with alarm features. FOTOSEARC.

In this chaotic world of hour-long traffic jams, demanding work schedules and lifestyles involving juggling and more juggling, it is getting even harder to get things done, and on time.
Often, we find ourselves overwhelmed by bills, deadlines and several commitments.
To make it all work demands not just will power, but some organisational effort as well. Not just outside your living space, no.
Actually, organisation, like charity, should begin at home. Here are a few items that will go a long way in making your home organised.
Analogue clocks
If your can, have one in each room, and preferably those with alarm features. That way you and your family always have a visual on what time it is, and you can time yourself when involved in a particular activity.
To beat the morning rush, you can, for instance, time yourself in the shower to make sure that you don’t waste precious time. Also, place a large wall clock at a focal point of the home; it goes a long way in reminding everyone what time it is, and that helps in improving time management in a household.
Push it
A good tea trolley will be a good helper when you cook and host guests. Fore regular use, place the condiments you use and your cooking cutlery on the top section of the trolley. Place a hook or a chrome rail on the side of the trolley to hang a towel and your oven mitts.
The tea trolley is a hosting companion like no other; it creates extra space in the dining area as it can be used to serve desserts, tea and drinks as the dining table is used to serve the other courses.
It also makes the moving of crockery, serving dishes and cutlery much easier as there is no need to lift them to the serving area.
The beauty about a trolley is that you can use it where you want to move the entertainment to space outside, say like your balcony or garden.
Peg board
Pegboards are so versatile and so simple to use that it is a shame that many homeowners think they can only be used in retail spaces.
In your bedroom, you can put a coloured pegboard and frame it in white or dark picture frames (depending on the rest of your bedroom decor) and place some simple metal hooks on it for hanging your jewellery.
Baskets and even more baskets
Have one in every room; whatever size, colour and material you choose is all up to you.
In the kitchen, it can be used to store vegetables or to place recyclable materials. In the living room, a basket can be used for a quick tidying up to store the things that don’t really belong there like toys, a book, blankets, etc.
In your bathroom, it can be used to store towels or even bathing supplies like soap and loofahs. In your bedrooms, baskets can be used to create some extra storage space in wardrobes for smaller sized items like underwear and socks.
Like a teacherPaint one of your entry walls with chalkboard paint and use it a central place to write your things-to- do list, important dates and even better, the things you have run out of in the house that you need to buy.
Be magnetic
Magnets don’t just have to be used on your fridge, for instance a magnetic knife holder will help your knives at the right place, make your kitchen less hazardous and free up drawer space.
There you have it, just a few things to make your space more organised and more importantly a joy to live in.

US treasure hunter arrested over theft of Sh4.5bn gold recovered from sunken ship.Drive Hot News

 Bars of gold. FILE PHOTO

A treasure hunter, who recovered millions of dollars in gold from a 19th century shipwreck has been arrested in Florida after more than two years on the run, authorities said Wednesday.
Thomas Thompson and assistant Alison Louise Antekeier were nabbed Tuesday at a hotel in Boca Raton, Florida, where they had been hiding for over a year, paying in cash and living under false identities.
Police had been chasing the pair since mid-2012 when they failed to appear in court in Ohio in connection with a lawsuit over the salvage expedition to bring up gold from the steamship SS Central America, which went down off South Carolina during a hurricane in 1857.
The plaintiffs charged they never received any return on their investment.
Thompson had led the salvage operation to recover assets from the ship, which sunk while carrying 21 tonnes of gold.
He recovered some of the treasure, which he later sold for $50 million.
The on-run duo "were well versed in 'tradecraft' and had read books on how to elude law enforcement. Upon being arrested, they offered no resistance," US Marshals said in a statement.
They will be sent back to Ohio to respond to the charges against them.

Man gets 27 years in jail for infecting girl with HIV.Drive Hot News

Masaka- The High Court in Masaka District has sentenced a man to 27 years in jail for defiling an eight-year-old girl and infecting her with HIV.
The State prosecutor, Mr Baxter Bakibinga, told court this week that the convict, Fulugension Bazooka, defiled the girl on May 22, 2011 in Kasijjagirwa village in Masaka Municipality.
Mr Bakibinga said the victim’s mother had sent the daughter to Bazooka’s home to collect beans, but upon reaching there, the convict forced her inside the house and defiled her.
The victim reported the matter to her mother who informed police who arrested Bazooka.
Mr Bakibinga asked the presiding judge, Justice Margaret Oumo Oguli, to give the convict a death sentence because he also infected the girl with HIV.
However, Bazooka asked for forgiveness, saying he had four children and a blind grandmother aged 90 to look after.
“My home is now a bush, no one can control it in my absence and I need to go back and take care of my family who rely on me,” Bazooka pleaded.
His lawyer, Mr Lawrence Yawe, pleaded for leniency for his client and asked court to consider the three years Bazooka had spent on remand and being a first offender.
However, Justice Oguli said prosecution had proved its case beyond reasonable doubt and observed that given the girl was infected with an incurable disease and that her mind was traumatised for life, the accused deserved a deterrent sentenced of 27 years in jail.

School head dies during police recruitment.Drive Hot News

 A police instructor with some of the graduates who turned up for Uganda Police Force recruitment at Kibuli police children’s school drill through physical exercise after being verified on Tuesday.

 Police in Fort Portal, Kabarole district are investigating circumstances under which a school head teacher from Bundibugyo collapsed dead during the police recruitment exercise.
The Rwenzori Police Spokesperson, Mr Bakari Muga Bashir said the deceased Mr Steven Bwampu in (his late 20s) collapsed dead in the ongoing Police recruitment exercise in the Rwenzori region.
Bwampu, the deputy head teacher Christ SS in Bundibugyo district and a resident of Nyahungu village, Buganikira parish in Mirambi Sub County, reportedly collapsed dead on Tuesday evening during the physical exercise after he was verified.
According to Mr Bakari, Bwampu collapsed in the field at Mpanga SS and was rushed to Fort Portal referral hospital where he was pronounced dead shortly after.
Police is waiting for the postmortem report to ascertain what could have caused his death.
Meanwhile, police is holding a man, a resident of Kyarusozi Sub County, Kyenjojo district on allegations of forgery.
The suspect was arrested after he appeared at a police recruitment exercise in Fort Portal and said he was aged 25 but according to the academic documents he presented, he is aged 32.
Uganda police force is carrying out a countrywide recruitment of cadets and police constables.
The recruitment exercise kicked off on Tuesday at 20 centres around the country. Applicants for police cadet positions were considered first. Reports from up-country stations indicate that the turn up was too high. On average, each centre received 1,000 applicants, bringing the total number to 20,000.
The screening and aptitude tests will be done up to Friday. Police will recruit between 3,000 and 5,000 constables.

Taylor Swift shakes off hacking on social media.Drive Hot News

The singer's Twitter and Instagram accounts were briefly seized by at least one hacker who vowed to release naked pictures of Swift if supporters paid enough in the form of the virtual currency bitcoin.
 The singer's Twitter and Instagram accounts were briefly seized by at least one hacker who vowed to release naked pictures of Swift if supporters paid enough in the form of the virtual currency bitcoin.

Taylor Swift on Tuesday scoffed at a hacker who took over her social media accounts and threatened to release nude pictures, with the pop star saying none existed.
The singer's Twitter and Instagram accounts were briefly seized by at least one hacker who vowed to release naked pictures of Swift if supporters paid enough in the form of the virtual currency bitcoin.
"Any hackers saying they have 'nudes'?" Swift wrote after retaking control of her Twitter account. "Psssh you'd love that wouldn't you! Have fun photoshopping cause you got NOTHING."
Little was known about the presumed hacker, whose account was suspended by Twitter. The user who threatened to release nude photos had the Twitter handle @lizzard and signed as lizard in Japanese.
@lizzard, in a Twitter biography before the account was suspended, claimed — incongruously — to be affiliated at once with the Islamic State extremist group, the hactivist collective Anonymous and North Korea.
Swift joked about the hacking, writing, "This is why I'm scared of technology."
Swift, whose "1989" was by far the best-selling US album released last year, famously pulled all of her music from Spotify as she said that the streaming service insufficiently compensated artists, charges denied by the Swedish company.
But Swift is intensively active on other parts of the Internet. She is one of only four people with more than 50 million followers on Twitter. The others are US President Barack Obama and fellow pop stars Katy Perry and Justin Bieber.

Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Kim Kardashian and Kanye West are obsessed with each other.Drive Hot News

 Kim Kardashian & Kanye West.

 Los Angeles - Kim Kardashian West and Kanye West are "obsessed" with each other.
The Keeping Up With The Kardashians star has revealed that her and her husband of eight months have a "normal relationship", despite all the rumours surrounding the pair.

She said: "We stay home and hang out, we are truly obsessed with each other.

"We have the most normal relationship, if you can call anything about us normal. We have a really normal relationship and we are just happy."

The 34-year-old television personality also praised the Only One rapper with whom she has 19-month-old North and revealed that he is always helpful, often offering her advice and making her lunch.

She continued: "I mean, we do everything [together] from right as I was leaving here, like, How do I look babe? How does my outfit look?' And you know, he's like 'Eww, those shoes are bad, take those off, here, put these on, OK, are you hungry? Here, let me hurry up and make your lunch before you go.

"We are together all the time and always wanting each other's opinions and we are just best friends."

Meanwhile, Kim has made no secret of the fact that she wants a second child and has revealed that she has turned to divine intervention in the hope she will get pregnant soon.

She told Entertainment Tonight!: "We've been trying, we've been trying! I pray about it."

Kim recently posted a series of behind-the-scene pictures of her and Kanye from their Balmain campaign:

Snow expected in Scotland as Met Office issues warning.Drive Hot News


Yellow '' be aware'' warnings, have been issued by the Met Office for frequent snow showers across Scotland, Northern Ireland and the north of England.
The warnings are in place across the whole of Scotland from 08:00 on Wednesday to 23:55 on Thursday.
About 5-10cm (1-3in) is expected at lower levels with 10cm (5in) over higher ground.
BBC Weather's Chris Blanchett said: "By Wednesday morning, there will be snow across the northwest Highlands."
He added: "During the day that snow level will come down, and we'll see snow showers across central and southern Scotland as well.
"The heaviest showers are likely to be Wednesday evening and overnight, and that of course will have implications for Thursday morning's rush hour.
"Of course, because they are showers they are hit and miss, so not everyone will see them."
Jet stream
Weather presenter Kawser Quamer said the expected wintry weather was linked to the snowstorm which has hit New York and the surrounding states in America.
She said: "Juno, is being labelled as one of the worst winter storms the east coast of the states has ever seen, with severe disruption from New Jersey right up to Maine.
"The driver responsible for this storm is the jet stream. The contrast of very mild air meeting very cold air drives a strong jet stream and created this snow storm in the states to rapidly deepen and intensify.
"But we're on the other side of the same jet stream.
"That means our air is coming from Greenland and Iceland - cold arctic air, but without that ferocious snow storm. What it does give us however is frequent snow showers, together with very strong winds - it will feel bitterly cold."

Sam Smith: Tom Petty given writing credit for Stay With Me.Drive Hot News

Sam Smith and Tom Petty
 Sam Smith said he was 'not previously familiar' with Tom Petty's track.

Tom Petty has been given a song writing credit on Sam Smith's hit Stay With Me, because of the similarities to his 1989 track I Won't Back Down.
Petty's publisher contacted Smith's team after it noticed a likeness between the two songs.
A spokesman for Smith said the singer "acknowledged the similarity", but the likeness was "a complete coincidence".
It was "amicably" agreed Petty and his collaborator Jeff Lynne would be credited as co-writers of the track.

Smith's spokesman said: "Recently the publishers for the song I Won't Back Down, written by Tom Petty and Jeff Lynne, contacted the publishers for Stay With Me, written by Sam Smith, James Napier and William Phillips, about similarities heard in the melodies of the choruses of the two compositions.
"Not previously familiar with the 1989 Petty/Lynne song, the writers of Stay With Me listened to I Won't Back Down and acknowledged the similarity.
"Although the likeness was a complete coincidence, all involved came to an immediate and amicable agreement."
Petty's I Won't Back Down peaked at number 12 in the US and number 28 in the UK in 1989, three years before Smith was born.

Is money a blessing or curse in marriage? Drive Hot News

Men often tell stories of wives who take off at the first sign of financial trouble. PHOTO/FILE
Men often tell stories of wives who take off at the first sign of financial trouble. PHOTO/FILE  

It is always such a pleasure to hear from readers. Some give me a perspective of life that I might never have envisioned. A few have (politely) told me off, but majority cheer me on.
Since this column started, I have received a couple of similar emails from different readers, emails which touch on money within marriage.
The men who read my column, (and they are many!) often tell stories of wives who take off at the first sign of financial trouble.
The women however, write about husbands who disappear when they start making good money. In both cases, I always wonder whether it is an issue of perception or whether this is a reality.
One reader, a man I will call Isaiah, gave me the go ahead to retell his story. His wife of seven years packed and left him when he lost his job, leaving their children behind, even though she later came back for them. She even moved to another town.
“Before I lost my job, we were happy, and she was loving and humble. I paid all the bills, even though she had a job - I did not even know how much she earned,” he wrote, and added,
“Once I lost my job, our marriage became intolerable - my wife became extremely disrespectful to me; it was as if I had become useless to her.”
What perturbed Isaiah about this sudden change in his wife was that early on in their marriage, his wife did not have a job.
He had encouraged her to go back to school so that she could qualify for a good job – he even went ahead and paid for her college education, and when she graduated, she got a job.
Says Isaiah,
“She seemed to have forgotten this, and when I was down and broke, she took our kids and left me when I needed her most.”
Of course, I only have his side of the story, which clearly shows that financial strain is a major source of conflict in marriage, but so is financial gain, as an email from a reader I will call Cathy, demonstrates.
Her email read;
“For the last 12 years, we have had a wonderful marriage. My husband was loving and available for me and our three children. In fact, he never stayed out late even when he met friends after work. As I write this, it has been four months since I moved out of our matrimonial home. He is no longer the man I knew.”
Cathy explains that her husband started changing when a business he put up begun to do well. He quit his job and decided to concentrate on the business, which flourished even more.
Within a short time, she says, her husband became too busy, distracted and impatient with her and the children.
“I though his business was taking too much of his time, but when I did some digging, I found out that he was seeing other women.”
When Cathy confronted her husband, he admitted that he was cheating on her, and worse, he was not apologetic. He became rude, disrespectful and arrogant, and finally, the insults degenerated to beatings. That is when she walked out.
In our marriage, my husband is the bold investor, and I, the risk averse, the saver. We fight about our different ways of handling money.
I wish I had paid a little more attention to my psychology lecturer, because I might be in a better position to decipher why money distabilises so many relationships.
Could it be that underneath the money wars are bigger, unresolved issues in such marriages, and that the pressure of too little or too much money is what acts as a catalyst for the volcanic eruption?
Or is it that we give the pursuit of money prominence over investing in our relationships?
Is money a curse or a blessing?

Nine dead in attack on luxury Tripoli hotel.Drive Hot News

An image grab taken from an AFPTV video shows fire and smoke rising in front of the Corinthia hotel in Tripoli on January 27, 2015 after gunmen stormed the luxury hotel and killed nine people.

Libyan security forces and emergency services surround Tripoli's central Corinthia Hotel (right) on January 27, 2015. 
They made it to the 24th floor of the hotel, a major hub of diplomatic and government activity, before being surrounded by security forces and detonating explosive belts they were wearing.
The dead included three security guards killed in the initial attack, five foreigners shot dead by the gunmen and a hostage who died when the attackers blew themselves up.
Naass said the foreigners killed were an American, two Filipinas, a French citizen and a South Korean. He did not give their identities.
Government officials in Washington and Paris confirmed the US and French deaths but did not identify the two victims.
At least five people were also wounded, including two Filipina employees hurt by broken glass from the car bomb, Naass said.
The hotel's 24th floor is normally used by Qatar's mission to Libya, but no diplomats or officials were present during the assault, a security source said.
The head of Libya's self-declared government, Omar al-Hassi, was inside the hotel at the time of the attack but was evacuated safely, Naass said.
In a statement on Twitter, the Tripoli branch of the Islamic State jihadist group claimed responsibility, the SITE Intelligence Group said.
It said the attack was in honour of Abu Anas al-Libi, an Al-Qaeda suspect who died in the United States earlier this month, days before facing a trial for bombing US embassies.
A video posted on jihadist forums showed an image of one of the alleged perpetrators.
Security forces loyal to Hassi's government, which is jostling for power with the internationally backed authority of Prime Minister Abdullah al-Thani, surrounded the building during the assault.
The government in Tripoli said Tuesday's attack was an assassination attempt on Hassi it blamed on "enemies of the revolution and the war criminal Khalifa Haftar", a former general who last year spearheaded an operation against Islamist militias in the second city Benghazi.
Ambulances, armoured vehicles and pick-up trucks with mounted artillery could be seen around the hotel during the attack.
Security forces prevented journalists from entering the hotel afterwards, saying work was needed inside to ensure the assailants had not left behind booby traps.
The Islamist-backed Fajr Libya (Libya Dawn) militia alliance took control of Tripoli last summer, forcing Thani's government to flee to the remote east.
The luxurious Corinthia was long considered a haven in a city beset by unrest, with officials, diplomats and foreign businessmen crossing paths in its lavish reception area.

Facebook, Instagram suffer outage but deny hacker attack.Drive Hot News

Facebook, Instagram suffer outage but deny hacker attack 
 Facebook, the world's most popular social network, and its Instagram photo site were interrupted temporarily Tuesday, provoking panic, rumours of a hack, and jokes of how more than one billion users were struggling to cope.

"This was not the result of a third party attack," Facebook said in a statement after its services were restored.

The outage "occurred after we introduced a change that affected our configuration systems," it added.

The breakdown, at around 0615 GMT, reportedly lasted an hour and hit users in the United States, Europe and Asia, with both sites showing error messages.

With users disabled from posting selfies or the latest details of their personal lives, many rushed to Twitter to complain and joke, with "#facebookdown" and "#SocialMeltdown2015" rapidly trending.

Some joked about how they had been able to read real books during the enforced social media pause.

"Status Update: Facebook is Down!!!" Twitter user @kingpodge posted, in a photographed handwritten note.

"It's, like, really snowing in New York and now Facebook and Instagram are down. The hipster apocalypse has begun," tweeted another user, @jessbrammar, as a snowstorm swept across the east coast of the United States.

"Things to do during #SocialMeldown2015 1. Take a selfie 2. Melt down further because we can't instagram it," posted @YashiDP.

"#facebookdown and I hope it never gets up again! Imagine the lives that would be saved!" tweeted @nikonical.

Some suggested that hacking group Lizard Squad had been responsible for the outage, after a tweet on the group's Twitter account read: "Facebook, Instagram, Tinder, AIM, Hipchat #offline #LizardSquad."

Reports said that Tinder, AIM, Hipchat and My Space had also been affected.

Lizard Squad has claimed to be behind a series hacks of Microsoft and Sony gaming networks over Christmas.

The group also claimed an attack on the website of Malaysia Airlines on Monday, referencing the Islamic State jihadists and threatening to expose data taken from the carrier's servers.

Facebook, which is headquartered in California, has more than 1.35 billion active users each month.

More than 80 percent of its daily active users are outside the United States and Canada.

Though much of its traffic is driven by seemingly banal or inconsequential posts, it is a vital tool for countless businesses and organisations and a key forum for communication in countries with repressive governments.

The last time Facebook was down was last September.

Greek singer Demis Roussos dies aged 68.Drive Hot News

Demis Roussos
Demis Roussos.

Greek singer Demis Roussos, who sold more than 60 million albums worldwide, has died aged 68, the Hygeia Hospital in Athens has confirmed to the BBC.
He was best known for his solo hits in the 1970s and 80s, including Forever and Ever, Goodbye and Quand je t'aime.
He was also a member of progressive rock group Aphrodite's Child.
Roussos was renowned for his off-screen role in Mike Leigh's 1977 TV play Abigail's Party, having provided the party's soundtrack.
He had been in the private hospital with an undisclosed illness for some time.
His Aphrodite's Child bandmate Vangelis paid tribute  that begins: "Demis my friend.
"I have just arrived in London and I've been told that you decide to take the long voyage, I'm shocked because I can't believe that this happened so soon.
"Nature gave you this magic voice of yours which made millions of people around the world very happy."
Demis Roussos  
  Roussos was as famous for his outfits as his music.
He added: "As for me, I keep those special memories that we share together those early days and I wish you to be happy wherever you are."
He signed off with the words: "Goodbye my friend goodbye. Love Vangelis."
Greek singer Nana Mouskouri paid tribute on French radio RTL: "He had a superb voice, he travelled in the world ... he loved what he was doing.
"He was an artist, a friend. I hope he is in a better world."
Finding fame The singer was born Artemios Ventouris Roussos in Alexandria, Egypt, in 1946, to a Greek father and Egyptian mother of Italian origin.
He was raised there until his parents moved to Greece in the early 60s after losing their possessions during the Suez Crisis.
Roussos began his music career at 17, when he joined the a band called The Idols, where he met Vangelis.
Aphrodite's Child produced three albums including It's Five O'Clock and 666, and enjoyed huge success in Europe in the late 1960s, especially France.
Roussos went on to enjoy a successful solo career, topping the charts in several countries with Forever And Ever in 1973, before doing the same in the UK in 1976.
Memorably he was referred to in Mike Leigh's Abigail's Party, by the character played by Alison Steadman, who plays his record in an attempt to impress her guests - commenting that he "doesn't sound" fat.
Demis Roussos Demis Roussos was still performing on stage in 2012
Abigail's Party In Mike Leigh's 1977 TV play Abigail's Party, the character Beverly - played by Alison Steadman (back right), was a huge Demis Roussos fan
Demis Roussos Roussos was photographed surrounded by awards for the UK sales of his albums, including gold discs for Happy To Be and My Only Fascination
Other solo hits include My Friend the Wind, My Reason, Someday Somewhere and Happy To Be On An Island In The Sun.
Roussos' fondness for kaftans saw him dubbed "the Kaftan King" and he often wore them for his performances on shows such as Top of the Pops.
He was also famous for his vocal adaptation of the score from the 1981 film Chariots of Fire, which had been composed by Vangelis.
In 1978, he decided to keep a lower profile and moved to Malibu Beach in the US - where he shed much of the weight that had seen him routinely mocked by comedians like Freddie Starr.
Famously, he was caught up in a plane hijacking when flight TWA 847 from Athens to Rome was hijacked by members of Hezbollah and Islamic Jihad in 1985.
He and his third wife were held at gunpoint for five days before they were released. Some of his fellow passengers endured 17 days in captivity.
The experience changed his life and afterwards he decided the best way he could help others and promote understanding in the world was by returning to music.
He released his album The Story of Demis Roussos not long after.

Monday, 26 January 2015

Indonesia's Widodo vows no amnesty for death row drug traffickers.

Indonesian President Joko Widodo applauds during the plenary session of the 25th ASEAN Summit at the Myanmar International Convention Center in Myanmar's capital Naypyidaw on November 12, 2014\
 Joko Widodo said 50 people died everyday in Indonesian because of narcotics.

Indonesia's president has said he will not compromise over death sentences given to convicted drug traffickers, despite international outcry.
Joko Widodo made the comments in aninterview with CNN to mark his first 100 days in power.
He said the policy also applied to two Australians on death row in Indonesia - Andrew Chan and Myuran Sukumaran - who have had appeals for clemency rejected.
Five foreigners and one Indonesian were executed by firing squad last week.
Indonesia has some of the toughest drug laws in the world. It ended a four-year moratorium on executions in 2013.
Joko Widodo has always insisted he will show no mercy towards drug criminals, saying they have ruined lives.
'No amnesty' When asked by CNN why he was standing firm despite protests from countries around the world he said: "Imagine every day we have 50 people die because of narcotics, of drugs.
"In one year, it's 18,000 people who die because of narcotics.
"We are not going to compromise for drug dealers. No compromise. No compromise," he added.
Australian Myuran Sukumaran (R) and Andrew Chan (L), the ringleaders of the 'Bali Nine' drug ring, wait for their verdict at a court cell in Denpasar, on Bali island, 14 February 2006 Australians Chan and Sukumaran have already had their final pleas for clemency rejected by the president
He said it was up to the courts to hand down death sentences and said while convicts could still appeal to him "there will be no amnesty".
Australia opposes the death penalty and its government has repeatedly campaigned on behalf of Chan and Sukumaran. They were in a group of nine Australians arrested in Bali in 2005 with more than 8.3kg (18lb) of heroin.
Chan and Sukumaran have already had their final pleas for clemency rejected by the president's office.
When asked specifically if there would be relief for the Australians, Mr Widodo shook his head.
Last week, Indonesia executed convicts from Malawi, Nigeria, Vietnam, Brazil and the Netherlands as well as one from Indonesia.
It prompted Brazil and the Netherlands to recall their ambassadors in protest.
Australian authorities have threatened to do the same if Chan and Sukumaran are put to death.

Sports.Injera, Asego named in Kenya 7s team for Wellington, Las Vegas legs.Drive Hot News

 Kenya's Collins Injera (right) with France's Terry Bouhraoua (L) during the 2013 Rugby World Cup Sevens quarter final match in Moscow, on June 30, 2013. FILE PHOTO


Four veteran Kenya Sevens rugby players made a comeback as head coach Felix Ochieng’ named the team for the Wellington and Las Vegas legs on Tuesday.
Mwamba players Collins Injera and Lavin Asego were selected alongside Patrice Agunda and Felix Ayange of Kenya Harlequins.
Andrew Amonde of KCB remains captain of the team.
Other players selected are Daniel Sikuta (Mwamba), Billy Odhiambo (Strathmore), Tony Owuor (Strathmore), Michael Wanjala (Strathmore) and Tony Onyango also of Strathmore.
Homeboyz players Oscar Oyodi and Bush Mwale also made it to the sevens team.
Management team: Vuyo Zangqa (Attack Coach), Graham Bentz (Strength & Conditioning Coach), Lameck Bogonko (Physio), Steven Sewe (Team Manager].

Kayihura warns lazy officers.Doble click and read more....

 Gen kale kayihura file photo
Mukono. The Inspector General of Police has vowed to replace lazy police officers, saying they are tainting the image of the police.
Gen Kale Kayihura warned that officers who remain seated in offices instead of reaching out to the communities will never be promoted.
“I am going to replace weak officers with the hard working ones than paying people who just read newspapers in offices,” Gen Kayihura said in Mukono last Friday. He was launching the Kampala Metropolitan Central Police Station that will soon be set up in the area.
The police chief added that he has decided to put Mukono, Wakiso and Entebbe under one commander for easy management. They were originally under Kampala.
“We want to have security in Kampala and its surroundings and that’s why we have come up with a new policing,” Gen Kayihura said.
He also noted that crime rate in Mukono District has reduced after reshuffling some commanders.
Gen Kayihura said the Force will partner with churches and Mosques to sensitise people against drug abuse and drunkenness.
“Drunkenness is not a crime but it has become a problem in Uganda as it leads to domestic violence, murder, defilement and others,” he said.
The police boss also emphasised that he does not work for salary but for the government and urged the officers to emulate him. He appealed to officers to be disciplined and have good relationship with the communities.Source Daily Monitor.

Libby Lane becomes first female bishop in the Church of England.Drive Hot News

 Libby Lane becomes first female bishop in the Church of England.

Kampala. On Monday afternoon, at York Minster, The Church of England officially consecrated the first female bishop in its history. In front of an audience of about 2,000 people, the Rev Libby Lane was made Bishop of Stockport.
The two-hour service, led by Ugandan-born Archbishop of York John Sentamu, was witnessed by other bishops, who laid their hands on Lane and prayed for her. Before her presentation to the congregation as Bishop of Stockport, Dr Sentamu presented her with a Bible and anointed her head.
Lane, who was educated at Oxford University was appointed bishop last December bringing an end to a five-century old tradition of exclusive male bishops.
Though the congregation applauded Lane’s consecration, there are many clergy who were opposed to the move, which comes more than 20 years after women were allowed to be ordained as priests in The Church of England.
In 2011, a small number of clergy and lay people left the church to join the Catholic Church over the issue. The service was briefly delayed when Dr Sentamu asked the audience if they had any opposition to the consecration ceremony and the Rev Paul Williamson stepped forward and shouted: “No, not in the Bible!” The service continued despite the disruption.
The Church of England described the Rev Williamson as a serial protestor, saying he has the right to protest but his was a lone voice.
The Rev Diana Nkesiga of All Saints Cathedral Kampala, one of the first female priests in Uganda, expressed her delight at the occasion. “It is an exciting and wonderful thing for women as a whole,” she said.
Uganda still far off
There will not be a sudden rush of new women bishops, though. The Rev Nkesiga says although a woman bishop in England is a wonderful thing, it will not do much for the female priests in Uganda.
“Each province, in the Anglican Church, is autonomous. What has happened in England will not influence the course of events in Uganda. If anything is to happen to elevate female priests to bishops, that will depend on our leaders,” she says.
There are more than 20 female Anglican bishops in Australia, Canada, Cuba, India, New Zealand, Swaziland, South Africa, and USA.
Formally the Vicar of St Peter’s Hale and St Elizabeth’s Ashley in Greater Manchester, United Kingdom, the 48-year-old is married to a fellow priest. The couple has two children. In her spare time, she is an avid Manchester United supporter who has learned to play the saxophone and enjoys solving cryptic crossword puzzles.
Libby Lane (R) listens as Archbishop of York John Sentamu conducts service in York Minster, England, yesterday during her consecration as Bishop of Stockport.