first_imgTHIBODAUX, La. – Austin Claunch was named the next head coach of the Nicholls State University men’s basketball program on Thursday as it was announced by director of athletics Matt Roan. Claunch’s hiring is subject to approval by the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors.An introductory press conference and meet and greet with Claunch is tentatively scheduled for the week of April 9 with additional details forthcoming.”As we vetted a strong pool of candidates, Austin Claunch stood out as the right man to lead the program,” Roan said. “Because of his high basketball IQ and broad network, I have no doubt Austin will be able to successfully recruit, develop, and coach outstanding student-athletes who will compete for championships and earn their degrees. More than anyone else, Austin understands the recipe for success at Nicholls and will provide consistency to our program while continuing its upward trajectory.”Claunch spent the past two seasons as an assistant on Richie Riley’s staff, contributing heavily to the Colonels historic 2018 campaign that included the most wins (21) since 1995 and best Southland Conference record (15-3) since 1998.”I am beyond excited to be named the next head basketball coach at Nicholls,” Claunch said. “The people of this university and all of Thibodaux have embraced me and treated me like family since the first day I arrived two years ago. I am ready to give the community a winning program built on enthusiasm, accountability and hard work. The foundation has been laid, and the future is extremely bright. I am truly humbled and honored to be leading our basketball program into the next phase.”Under Riley, Claunch was primarily responsible for guard development, specifically point guards, working daily with seniors Roddy Peters (SLC Newcomer of the Year, First Team), Jahvaughn Powell (All-SLC Defensive Team), Lafayette Rutledge (Single-season 3-point record holder) and Tevon Saddler (All-SLC Second Team). He was also the key recruiter for Kevin Johnson and Ryghe Lyons, who both started over 15 games as freshmen.Claunch’s impact at Nicholls was immediately felt as it was his scout that helped the Colonels knock off Boston College 79-73 on Nov. 11, 2016. He worked closely with Riley on offensive and defensive schemes and gameplans. Claunch created, orchestrated and conducted all basketball camps for the Colonels over the past two years.Before coming to Nicholls, Claunch served in a variety of roles at Clemson University under coach Brad Brownell from 2013-16. With the Tigers, Claunch most notably instructed All-ACC First Teamer Jaron Blossomgame and current Brooklyn Nets small forward KJ McDaniels. He also worked under Paul Hewitt at George Mason during the 2012-13 season as the director of player development.Each summer from 2007-2011, Claunch worked with former NBA player and longtime Head Coach John Lucas at his camps in Houston. He also interned in the summer of 2010 with Joe Abunassar and Impact Basketball. From 2008-10, Claunch assisted his father’s 15U and 16U Adidas Houston Select Basketball Club teams.Claunch was a four-year starter and two-time captain at Emory University on the Division III level from 2008-12. He ranks first in Emory history in career assists (580), assists per game (5.8) and minutes played (3,132). Claunch is also second in free throw percentage (.877). He was also a three-time All-Conference First Team player at Emory, and a member of the University Athletic Association’s 25th Anniversary Team. Claunch set the school’s three best single-season assist totals over each of his final three seasons.The Houston native earned his undergraduate degree in political science, with a minor in religion, from Emory in 2012. Claunch obtained a master’s degree in human resource development from Clemson in August 2015.last_img read more

first_imgThe announcement came as French and British authorities expressed relief that England’s victory over Wales in Lens passed without any serious spectator trouble.The two England fans were among 35 people injured during three days of clashes in Marseille between England and Russia fans before their game last Saturday.One of the badly hurt fans, in his 50s, is reported to have been hit on the head with an iron bar.”We are still looking for those responsible for these events which are considered attempted murder,” Marseille prosecutor Brice Robin said.Investigators are studying security camera footage to track the attackers.Mr Robin said the Marseille violence “was in large part provoked by particularly violent Russian supporters who wanted to show their supremacy over the English supporters.”French riot police fired tear gas and baton charged beer-fuelled England fans in Lille on Wednesday night when they crossed with Russian, Wales and Slovak fans in the city. Thirty-six arrests were made and 16 people were injured.But England’s 2-1 victory over Wales in the nearby city of Lens passed without serious incident.Lens closed its schools and most shops followed in a near lockdown. The drink still flowed freely for the match however.last_img read more

first_imgLos Angeles Lakers’ LeBron James, right, and Boston Celtics’ Kyrie Irving chat with their mouths covered during the first half of an NBA basketball game, Saturday, March 9, 2019, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)LOS ANGELES — LeBron James put up a triple-double in less than 28 minutes, and it still wasn’t enough to keep his patchwork Los Angeles Lakers competitive against Kyrie Irving and the surging Boston Celtics.Irving was the biggest reason for that disappointment during a fairly predictable chapter of this storied rivalry between two franchises heading in opposite directions.ADVERTISEMENT Boston was challenged while James racked up his 80th career triple-double in a makeshift Lakers lineup missing three injured starters, but Irving hit a series of big shots down the stretch to seal it. After missing Wednesday’s win at Sacramento with a bruised thigh, Irving added seven rebounds and seven assists.Marcus Morris had 16 points and seven rebounds for the Celtics, and Gordon Hayward added 15 points.“I feel like we’re on the right track,” Hayward said. “Certainly winning three in a row helps that. Certainly we can improve, too. We just want to be playing our best basketball come playoff time.”James had 30 points, 12 assists and 10 rebounds in his seventh triple-double for the Lakers, who have lost five straight in a playoff chase that looks futile at this point.“I did like the way we played,” James said. “I thought we shared the ball. I thought we defended them for the majority of the game. That’s a very good team over there. Their hopes are very, very high in the Eastern Conference.”ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Giannis Antetokounmpo powers Bucks in bounce back win over Celtics PLAY LIST 02:29Giannis Antetokounmpo powers Bucks in bounce back win over Celtics00:50Trending Articles01:48NBA: Kawhi, George seek more for Clippers than beating Lakers02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup title Japeth Aguilar wins 1st PBA Finals MVP award for Ginebra Nadine Lustre’s phone stolen in Brazil Rogue cops marked as Gamboa’s targets in his appointment as PNP chief Ginebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup title Irving scored 30 points and Marcus Smart had 16 in the Celtics’ 120-107 victory over the short-handed Lakers on Saturday night, propelling Boston to its third consecutive win on its California trip.“I feel for him,” Irving said, citing the Lakers’ injuries around James. “LeBron has always been a championship contender. Not to qualify for the playoffs is hard. I can only imagine.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGolden State Warriors sign Lee to multiyear contract, bring back ChrissSPORTSCoronation night?SPORTSThirdy Ravena gets‍‍‍ offers from Asia, Australian ball clubsIrving didn’t make the playoffs with the Cleveland Cavaliers until James returned for the 2014-15 season, so he can do more than imagine. But playoff qualification won’t be a problem for his Celtics, whose up-and-down regular season has hit a high on the West Coast during a strong trip that concludes Monday against the Clippers.“The stuff that happens in the regular season, you can barely remember it in the playoffs,” Irving said with a shrug. “Under no circumstances is it fun to lose,” Wagner said. “I told Luke after the game, it hurts to fight like that and to come away with another loss.”FRESH STARTJohnathan Williams added career bests of 18 points and 10 rebounds in the undrafted rookie from Gonzaga’s ninth appearance for the Lakers, who will get plenty of chances to show off the franchise’s impressive acumen in scouting and personnel development down the stretch of another lost season.UP NEXTCeltics: At Clippers on Monday night.Lakers: At Chicago on Tuesday night.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Nextcenter_img Robert Lewandowski becomes Bundesliga’s top-scoring foreign player Eugenie Bouchard’s bid for Australian Open spot ends in qualifying MOST READ Rajon Rondo, whose buzzer-beating jumper beat his former team in Boston last month, had four points, nine assists and six rebounds for the Lakers.TIP-INSCeltics: Boston shot 51.6 percent and his 14 3-pointers. … Al Horford and Terry Rozier added 10 points apiece.Lakers: LA was 5-for-27 on 3-pointers, including 1-for-5 by James. … Lance Stephenson also sat out for the fourth time in five games to rest his sprained toe. … James, Ingram and Ball have played together in only 23 games this season, and the Lakers went 15-8.COMPOUNDED INJURIESThe Lakers played without Brandon Ingram, Lonzo Ball and Kyle Kuzma after receiving another round of discouraging injury news before the game. Ingram was ruled out for the season with a blood clot in his upper body , a potentially serious problem.Kuzma also wasn’t ready to return from the sprained ankle that sidelined him for a second straight game, and Ball will miss at least two more weeks with a sprained ankle that hasn’t improved enough since he was injured Jan. 19. Ball has missed big chunks of his first two NBA seasons due to injuries.Combined with coach Luke Walton’s decision to closely monitor James’ minutes over the final month, the 10th-place Lakers are already looking toward the summer and LeBron’s second season in Hollywood.AUF GEHTSMoe Wagner scored a career-high 22 points in his first start for Los Angeles, which has lost nine of 11 overall. The German rookie went 7 for 13 and grabbed six rebounds. Will you be the first P16 Billion Powerball jackpot winner from the Philippines? View comments Tom Brady most dominant player in AFC championship history Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Gretchen Barretto’s daughter Dominique graduates magna cum laude from California collegelast_img read more

first_imgWhat really happened to the  National Elections Commission’s recent voter registration exercise?Is it true that they had mobile registration stations?  Is it true that they spent US$9 million on vehicle rental to take the registrars from place to place registering people?Is it true that they did not advertise in any newspaper the various registration sites around the country?To what extent did they engage in voter registration education? If NEC is unable to give cogent answers to these questions,   then no wonder NEC achieved little over 26 percent or 104,710 of their projected goal of 400,000 registrants.But let us examine each of the questions separately–the first, mobile registration stations.  We recall that in 2005 and 2011 NEC had fixed voter registration stations throughout the country.  This was as it should have been given the transportation difficulties people encounter traveling from one place to another all over Liberia, the greater Monrovia area included.  How much more the interior parts of the country?  All voter registration stations should have been STATIONARY, so that people knew exactly where they were expected to be registered.On what basis did they make this decision? That seemed to have been the most fatal mistake of all.  And it was a very costly one, causing NEC to spend US$9 million on RENTED vehicles.  Who ever heard of such a thing? So in the end they spent money driving the registration teams from the people; so by the time would-be registrants arrived, the teams had gotten into their rented vehicles and gone!How much advertising did NEC do to let people know where they were to report to register?  We remember distinctly that in 2005 NEC under Frances Johnson Morris advertised in a few newspapers the long lists of voter registration stations around the country.  So people knew long in advance where they were expected to go to be registered.NEC may contend they did not have the money to advertise.  But they could have approached the newspapers and appealed for concessions, to make sure that people knew where to go to register.  Some of the money use on rented vehicles could have gone into newspaper and radio advertising.How much voter registration education did NEC do?  We understand that there were posters pasted on light poles and walls.  But clearly they were not enough.  How effectively did NEC use the community radio stations scattered throughout the country?  It is a known fact that most of these stations are financially strapped.  Here was an opportunity for NEC to empower them to render a vital, patriotic service by helping them with a little fuel and something to subsist on, in return for mobilizing the people to go out and register to vote.NEC attempted a valid excuse when it blamed the poor turn out on voter apathy.  It is a fact that many people, especially the young, including first time registrants, have become apathetic given the dismal performance of our legislators–people have  failed to do the people’s business but spent most of the time attending to their own affairs, and where they perform the work they are paid to do, they often demand special favors–mainly financial.That is why NEC should have risen to the challenge of voter education by launching a massive publicity campaign explaining to 18 year-olds the critical importance of participating in the electoral process.  By registering to vote, they would prepare themselves, as they say in America, to “THROW OUT THE RASCALS!” and elect new leaders to do the people’s business.Alas! NEC missed that opportunity.  We did not expect them to be as blunt as that and thereby incur the wrath of the legislators.  But NEC could have engaged some of the young leaders, from the Young Men’s Christian Association (YMCA), the  Liberia National Student Union (LINSU) and other youth organizations, as well as some of the country’s vocal young people, to crisscross the country encouraging their kind to go register to vote.We hope and pray that NEC will have another opportunity to repeat the voter registration for the forthcoming elections.    But from where will they get the money for a repeat exercise, with the government in such serious financial straits?The NEC Commissioners are challenged to be creative in determining their next move to correct their fatal registration fiasco.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

first_imgGRANDE PRAIRIE, A.B. – Grande Prairie RCMP are asking for the public’s assistance in relation to a break and enter to a business in Bezanson.According to RCMP, on the morning of October 26 at approximately 4:40 a.m., police responded to a report of a break and enter to the Bezanson General Store.Police say the suspects forced their way into the business and then fled the location with approximately $3,500 of tobacco products, heading south in a truck.- Advertisement -The two male suspects are described as:Suspect #1:male, appears younger in agewearing black pants & black hooded sweater, with white PUMA logo on front, white shoes, light coloured cap, glovesSuspect #2:Advertisement male, appears older & Caucasianwearing black hooded sweater, blue jeans, dark coloured footwearThe suspect vehicle is described as a newer model, black, crew cab pickup truck with a short box.Anyone with information regarding this incident is being asked to call the Grande Prairie RCMP at 780-830-5701 or CrimeStoppers at 1-800-222-TIPS.last_img read more

first_imgMost people don’t even know there’s an election, said Barbara Stone, professor emeritus of political science at Cal State Fullerton. “Despite the fact they claim you know your local people best, people don’t,” Stone said. “Unless something is going wrong, they don’t pay attention.” And even in those few cases, turnout remains low. In a hotly contested high school district election that saw three incumbents kicked out in November 1997, turnout was 12 percent. Turnout is more likely to be driven by candidates than voters, Stone said. “It’s literally up to the candidates to get people out,” she said. Most candidates in turn focus on the minority of voters who will cast ballots, Newcomer said. “Thus the people in the past aren’t getting mail from the candidates, aren’t talking to the candidates and aren’t getting anything saying there’s an election going on,” he said. Part of the problem may be television. There’s little coverage of local issues, said Richard Harvey, professor emeritus of political science at Whittier College. “It just goes to show that publicity on television rules the day,” Harvey said. Local candidates certainly can’t afford the money for TV ads, he said. “You obviously can’t afford on limited budgets for water district – even for school boards – to mount much of a campaign,” Harvey said. “Even if you could, (the campaign) would be overwhelmed by media coverage of high levels (like presidential races).” It does appear that city council races will have higher turnout than school boards. For example, 25 percent of Montebello voters went to the polls for the November 2001 council election. “There is more publicity about (city council elections),” Newcomer said. “What the city council does tends to be in the news from week to week. What the school board (does) doesn’t.” Candidates say finding those few voters can be difficult. “I find it difficult because it’s almost a mind game on who’s going to vote,” said Richard LeGaspi, Norwalk-La Mirada Unified School District board member who is up for re-election Tuesday. “We have to find those people who turn out for the election,” LeGaspi said. “That’s the sad part. We’re killing ourselves trying to get out the word, trying to talk to everybody.” Mike Spence, a West Covina Unified School District board member who also is up for re-election, said campaigns often focus on absentee ballot voters. Spence said low turnout isn’t all that bad. “People who are voting are more informed,” Spence said. “They’re coming to vote because they’re concerned about their school or city.” Although most people don’t vote, no one questions the legitimacy of these elections. “It doesn’t bode well for (democracy), but here we are, we’re still surviving,” Harvey said. “Who’s going to question the legitimacy?” he asked. “It’s a free election. It’s a free country. The opportunity is there.” mike.sprague@sgvn.com (562) 698-0955, Ext. 3022160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Election Day is scheduled for Tuesday. Does anybody know? Does anyone care? Will the local electorate go to the polls and vote? If it’s like most off-year elections for school and water boards, few will. The highest turnout in a nonstatewide election was 17.7 percent in November 1983. Turnout four years ago was a meager 11.4 percent. While turnout was nearly 50 percent two years ago, it was a part of a statewide election to vote on Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger’s measures. “The turnout has been the same for decades,” said Whittier Mayor Owen Newcomer, also a professor of political science at Rio Hondo College. “It’s typically 10 percent or sometimes below that,” Newcomer said. For example, only 8 percent voted in the November 2001 Whittier Union High School District election. Typically, voters tend to be older, more educated and have ties to the community, experts say. last_img read more

first_imgThis symbol of redemption hung in teeny-tiny glory over a rendering of the Hollywood Bowl. Only I believe that it had more to do with the actual cross visible from the Hollywood Bowl than anything religious. Anyway, three years ago the ACLU asked the supervisors to remove it. And they did, with the ever-predictable Mike Antonovich swearing that we’d all see this cross ” restored to the seal in our lifetimes.” They then took this opportunity to replace some of the daffy old symbols with some daffy new ones. Ejected forever is the goddess Pomona, probably because she represents a pagan deity pirated by the ancient Romans from the ancient Greeks and because parking at the County Fair is always abysmal. In her place is an American Indian woman in flowing Greek robe holding forth like a Halloween hostess with a basket of acorns. Or possibly bite-size Almond Joys. Oh, and she has a halo, maybe to indicate how she was likely dispatched to heaven by the holy Europeans. Meanwhile, the Hollywood Bowl’s spot is now occupied by Mission San Gabriel to symbolize the wholly non-Christian origins of a vast metropolis that began (and don’t even think Spanish Catholics had anything to do with this) El Pueblo de Nuestra Senora la Reina de los Angeles de Porciuncula. Or The Town of Our Lady the Queen of Angels. And, no, it never was the City of Angels. The Bowl is still there, but moved to the upper right corner. Only now the offending cross, which was noticed only by the ACLU’s crack Harvard-educated Nitpicker Department, is gone and all is right with the county. But did anybody really think that such an issue would be overlooked by the kind of people who get bent out of shape about absolutely everything, including the not-so-terribly-old Pledge of Allegiance? Anyway, a county public works employee filed suit in 2004 contending that the supervisors’ decision was an act of hostility toward religion. Actually, it was something far better than that and far sillier. Or as an attorney with the County Counsel’s Office stated this week, “Governments are to be neutral when it comes to religion.” All the way down to microscopic crosses. There was, as usual when it comes to using religion like a hammer, more to this than meets the eye. The suit, you see, was fostered by the Michigan-based Thomas More Law Center, whose purpose was Well, I’ll let you decide what the purpose was. “I think this court, given the right case, would take it, and it would be the one that would change the landscape of separation between church and state,” said TMLC attorney Richard Muise. I don’t know about you, but I’m so happy to hear that there are people working silently and diligently to protect my right to worship in any way that I please as long as the way that I worship pleases them. And even better to know that there are those who, for reason all their own, would like to end once and for all this two-century-old idea that church and state should remain separated one from the other for the freedom of all and for the good of all. In this case the ACLU’s sublime and idiotic move got blown up into something hugely dangerous. Don’t you think that it’s finally time to let up on our poor overworked God and to worry less about the evils of a church and state separated and more about the separation of suffering humanity from food, clean water and a fair shot at a decent life? I want to hear your comments. Connect with me at john.bogert@dailybreeze.com, call 310-543-6681 or send a letter to Daily Breeze/John Bogert, 5215 Torrance Blvd., Torrance, CA 90503-4077. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREPettersson scores another winner, Canucks beat KingsBut first a little history of a terribly important issue that actually reached the Supreme Court this week, where it was promptly dismissed without comment. You might recall how the American Civil Liberties Union, with nothing better to do, asked the supervisors to remove the cross, which you probably never noticed in the little slot just beside the left elbow of Pomona. Actually, the Roman harvest goddess was surrounded left and right with six compartments holding six important civic symbols placed there by God. No, sorry. They were put there under the direction of the late, great Supervisor Kenneth Hahn who – after begetting a political son and daughter – is about as close to God as you can get in the 2nd District. Those instantly recognizable and meaningful icons include a triangle and caliper symbolizing the great engineering feats involved in water theft, a galleon probably belonging to Spanish explorer Juan Rodriguez Cabrillo, a fish to celebrate the fishing industry that has more or less vanished from San Pedro, a cow (see a lot of those, do you?), the oil derricks that are no longer on Signal Hill and the big enchilada itself – a symbol so potent that Christian activists felt compelled to run it all the way up to the highest (packed) court in the land. Half the world – that’s 3 billion people – live on less than $2 a day. This while a billion people can’t read or write, even though diverting 1 percent of the world’s armament spending could put every needy child on the planet into a decent school. I don’t mean to bring you down, but the United Nations has pages of this stuff and it’s all bad. So it is especially gratifying during Advent, the season during which Christians contemplate the birth of their savior, to know that there are still people out there working tirelessly to make ours a better world. I am, of course, talking about the highly controversial removal three years ago of the cross from the Los Angeles County seal and all that has happened since. last_img read more

first_imgDonegal South West TD Pearse Doherty has described the increased waiting times for Social Welfare payments as disgraceful.Speaking after a response from Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton, to his recent Parliamentary Questions on the issue, he claimed the FG Lab government have made waiting times worseThe waiting time for the majority of claims has increased while the waiting time for just four payments has decreased, he said. “Meanwhile, people are waiting up to 28 weeks for carers’ allowance compared to 13 weeks last year, an increase of four months.“In my own constituency office, I am aware of people still waiting after ten months for a decision on carer’s allowance claims and reports from staff in the Department are that they are now only processing claims from September last year.“Waiting times for one parent family payments has risen to 17 weeks while widowers’ non-contributory pension and state non-contributory pension waiting time has risen to 11 weeks.”He said the Minister confirmed that those who have applied for invalidity pension now have to wait a staggering 31 weeks for their claims to be processed. “Despite Minister Joan Burton’s assertions that her Department has introduced a modernised system designed to increase the efficiency of processing applications, all the evidence shows that one year on, for those suffering the most and relying on social welfare payments, their situation is considerably worse than when this government took office,” he said.DOHERTY CLAIMS SOCIAL WELFARE WAITING TIMES HAVE ROCKETED SINCE NEW GOVERNMENT was last modified: June 20th, 2012 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Tags:Pearse Dohertysocial welfare paymentslast_img read more

first_imgFollowing their relegation from the Premier League last season, Fulham recorded their first Championship win of the season against Blackburn Rovers over the weekend, with manager Scott Parker undoubtedly hoping that his side can hit the ground running in what is widely considered to be one of the most competitive competitions in Europe. The Cottagers have made significant changes when it comes to their playing squad, with big name signings from last year including Jean Michaël Seri and Ryan Babel having made swift exits, whilst wonderkid Ryan Sessegnon made the short move to North London on deadline day when Spurs splashed out £25 for the 19-year-old. Despite losing such firepower, manager Parker has added quality across the pitch in the form of Anthony Knockaert, Ivan Cavaleiro and Josh Onomah, with the latter having arrived as part of the deal which saw Sessegnon return to the Premier League. As a result, the Whites now appear to have a squad capable of challenging for promotion in the Championship this season, with goals from Aleksandar Mitrovic and Captain Tom Cairney having helped them to a first win of the season on Saturday afternoon.Manager Scott Parker is confident of “a big season” at Craven Cottage, with their chances of gaining promotion straight back to the top-flight potentially resting on their ability to get to grips with playing two games a week on a regular basis throughout the campaign. Fulham certainly have the squad to deal with such rigours however, with Harry Arter and Bobby Reid having also been added to their ranks on deadline day, joining from Bournemouth and Cardiff respectively. Fulham can be backed to secure promotion at odds of 7/4 with the high tier app of Ladbrokes, making them the second favourites behind Leeds United at this early stage of the season. The Cottagers gained promotion to the Premier League after defeating Aston Villa last year, however fans in West London will undoubtedly be hoping that their team can return to the top-flight automatically this time around and joining the list of teams who bounced back to the Premier League after just one season.One area in which manager Parker may have a few concerns is in the backline, with a last-minute deal for Chelsea defender Michael Hector having disappointingly collapsed. While a deal for the 27-year-old could well materialise in January, injuries to the likes of Tim Ream or Alfie Mawson would leave them stretched. Fulham return to action on Friday evening when they take on Huddersfield Town, in what was a Premier League fixture last season. The Cottagers also face Millwall, Nottingham Forest and Cardiff City in August, with such encounters potentially providing a much clearer indication as to whether Fulham will be in with a chance of returning to the big time at the first time of asking. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebookby Taboolaby TaboolaSponsored LinksSponsored LinksPromoted LinksPromoted LinksRecommended for youAspireAbove.comRemember Pauley Perrette? Try Not To Smile When You See Her NowAspireAbove.comUndoLifestly.com25 Celebs You Didn’t Realize Are Gay – No. 8 Will Surprise WomenLifestly.comUndoUsed Cars | Search AdsUsed Cars in Tuen Mun Might Be Cheaper Than You ThinkUsed Cars | Search AdsUndoTopCars15 Ugliest Cars Ever MadeTopCarsUndoHappyTricks.comHer House Always Smells Amazing – Try her Unique Trick!HappyTricks.comUndoFood World Magazine15 Fruits that Burn Fat Like CrazyFood World MagazineUndoezzin.com20 Breathtaking Places to See Before You Dieezzin.comUndoDrhealth35 Foods That Should Never Be Placed in the RefrigeratorDrhealthUndolast_img read more

first_img13 April 2012 South Africa is a major receiving state for refugees and asylum seekers, currently handling around 3 500 to 4 000 new applications a month. The Department of Home Affairs has identified a huge backlog in its review of asylum refusals, but is working hard to clear it. The department has roped in the police to help with queue management, appointed a document management company, and will extend working hours as part of efforts to clear the backlog, Director-General Mkuseli Apleni said on Thursday.Audit uncovers massive backlog After a recent audit, it was found that there was a backlog in the review of decisions by the Refugees Appeal Board and the Standing Committee on Review Affairs. Apleni explained that if a person’s application for asylum was judged to be unfounded, he or she could appeal the decision with the Refugees Appeal Board. If an application was found to be manifestly unfounded, the decision was automatically reviewed by the Standing Committee on Refugee Affairs. Apleni said the department had identified backlogs in reviewing unfounded applications by the Refugees Appeal Board in Durban, Port Elizabeth, Cape Town, Marabastad, the Pretoria Showgrounds, and Musina. The backlog currently stands at 87 602. A backlog of 68 740 in the review of manifestly unfounded applications by the Standing Committee on Refugee Affairs was also found in these regions. Apleni was hopeful that the backlog would be cleared within the next four monthsLonger hours, extra hands, tight schedule “Having acknowledged the immense challenge we face in finalising applications for asylum, we have taken a number of steps which will be effective from Monday, 16 April,” he said. As of Monday, working hours at Home Affairs offices will be extended, with the offices operating from 7.30am to 5pm from Monday to Friday. In addition, Refugee Reception Offices will be opened on Saturdays from 8am to 1pm until the backlog has been resolved. The department will put in place a schedule which will see asylum seekers from specific regions being attended to on allocated days. Those from Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries will be attended to on Mondays and Tuesdays; from East Africa on Wednesdays and Saturdays; from West Africa on Thursdays; and those from Asia and other countries will be attended to on Fridays. Since Wednesday, members of the SA Police Service have been assisting Home Affairs with queue management. Immigration officers will also be deployed to help the police and existing security teams at Refugee Reception Offices. Source: BuaNewslast_img read more