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President Cyril Ramaphosa leads South African delegation to UN General Assembly

first_imgOn Saturday 22 September 2018, President Cyril Ramaphosa will embark on a Working Visit to New York where he will lead the South African delegation to the 73rd Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).This marks President Ramaphosa’s inaugural participation in UNGA as Head of State and Government. President Ramaphosa will participate in the annual General Debate which is the occasion for world leaders to gather at UN Headquarters to discuss global issues.President Ramaphosa and other world leaders will meet in New York from 25 to 27 September 2018 under the theme: “Making the United Nations relevant to all people: global leadership and shared responsibilities for peaceful equitable and sustainable societies.”The theme is inspired by the commitment of Ms Maria Fernanda Espinosa Garces, President of the General Assembly (PGA) to making the United Nations a more relevant, efficient, transparent and democratic organisation.The UN General Debate will be preceded by the unveiling of a statue of President Nelson Mandela and the historic Nelson Mandela Peace Summit, a high-level plenary meeting convened by the PGA in honour of the centenary of the birth of South Africa’s first democratically elected president.The Nelson Mandela Peace Summit will be an opportunity for Heads of State and Government to commit global support towards ending conflict in the world and on the African Continent in particular, in line with the African Union’s aspirations of “silencing the guns by 2020”.In his inaugural address at the UNGA, President Ramaphosa is expected to outline South Africa’s domestic and foreign policy goals and priorities. These include the country’s land reform programme aimed at fostering greater stability, inclusiveness and transformation within the South African economy.The President is further expected to lay out South Africa’s priorities for its two-year term as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council from 2019 to 2020.While in New York, President Ramaphosa will meet with CEOs of major global companies as part of the drive to attract foreign direct investment in order to ramp up the South African economy.This will form part of the build-up to South Africa’s International Investment Conference which will take place on 26 and 27 October with a focus on bringing investment of $100 billion into the South African economy over the next five years.President Ramaphosa will be accompanied by Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Ms Lindiwe Sisulu,;Minister of Trade and Industry Dr Rob Davies; Minister of Defence and Military Veterans Ms Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula; Minister of Finance Mr Nhlanhla Nene and Minister of Health Dr Aaron Motsoaledi.– The Presidencylast_img read more

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Perpetual, JRU ice Final 4 cast

first_imgLATEST STORIES Slow and steady hope for near-extinct Bangladesh tortoises “We really wanted to win,” Perpetual Help coach Macky Cariño said in Filipino. “I told my players to treat this game as if it was our last and their willingness to win showed.”The Final Four gets going on Friday with defending champion Arellano, which secured the top spot, clashing with JRU and No. 2 San Beda battling the No. 3 Lady Altas.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSLillard, Anthony lead Blazers over ThunderSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutThe Lady Blazers had numerous chances to force a fifth set but went on to blow seven set points. University of Perpetual Help survived a desperate College of St. Benilde side, 27-25, 25-23, 11-25, 32-30, to clinch a Final Four berth in the NCAA Season 93 women’s volleyball Final Four Tuesday at Filoil Flying V Centre in San Juan.Jose Rizal University likewise turned back also-ran Lyceum, 25-13, 25-23, 25-11, 25-12, to advance to the Final Four for the first time since returning to the tournament in 2008ADVERTISEMENT MOST READ AFP official booed out of forum Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC John Lloyd Cruz a dashing guest at Vhong Navarro’s wedding Read Next NEXT BLOCK ASIA 2.0 introduces GURUS AWARDS to recognize and reward industry influencers View comments Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH 2 ‘newbie’ drug pushers fall in Lucena sting Scorpion king Globe Business launches leading cloud-enabled and hardware-agnostic conferencing platform in PH PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd PLAY LIST 02:25PH women’s volleyball team motivated to deliver in front of hometown crowd00:50Trending Articles04:11Robredo accepts Duterte’s drug czar post appointment01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon Citylast_img read more

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Hey At Least The Cavs Might Not Get Swept

Before the NBA Finals tipped off last Thursday, I and others thought the Cleveland Cavaliers might give the Golden State Warriors a better fight this year than last. Unfortunately for Cleveland — as usual — that notion is quickly vanishing. Fresh off an easy 15-point victory in Game 1, the Warriors crushed the Cavs by 33 in Game 2 on Sunday night, burying the Cavs in the most demoralizing 0-2 hole in championship history. Before this year, no team had ever beaten an opponent by 48 combined points in the first two games of the Finals.If we account for the fact that the first two Finals games this year were played on the Warriors’ home court — meaning we subtract from the home team’s margin its built-in advantage of about 3.6 points per game, in accordance with our Elo ratings — the Cavs have been running about 20 points per game behind the Warriors in the series so far. Even among teams sporting 0-2 Finals deficits, that’s just embarrassing: Embed Code Never underestimate the heart of a champion, indeed.Cleveland needn’t go back so far in the history books for the other team to bounce back from a remotely comparable hole. This year’s Portland Trail Blazers were beaten by 41 combined by the Los Angeles Clippers in games 1 and 2 of their first-round series before storming back to win four straight. But it’s worth mentioning that the Clippers lost point god Chris Paul to a season-ending injury late in Game 4, significantly lowering the difficulty of a Portland comeback. By contrast, the Cavs would have to perform a revival the hard way — unless there’s another Steph Curry injury. Listen to the latest episode of our sports podcast Hot Takedown. By Neil Paine The smart money says it probably isn’t happening. Elo gives Cleveland a mere 11 percent chance of winning now, and it doesn’t even know that Kevin Love’s Game 3 status is up in the air after suffering a concussion in Game 2. But talk of a sweep might be premature. The same historical data that underscored the grim state of Cleveland’s title chances also shows that there’s little to no relationship between an 0-2 team’s margin of defeat in games 1-2 and the eventual length of the series. Although no team that was dominated as utterly as the Cavs has gone on to win a series from an 0-2 deficit, just as many forced a sixth game as were swept. In fact, of the 30 teams in our 0-2 sample to be beaten by an average location-adjusted margin of at least 15 points in games 1-2, only a third were swept; 30 percent lost in five games, 23 percent lost in six, 7 percent bowed out in seven — and 7 percent went on to win the series.And if they’re looking for inspiration to avoid the brooms, the Cavs should look at themselves, but in reverse. Early in the Eastern Conference finals, Cleveland built a 2-0 lead, whipping the Toronto Raptors by an adjusted average of 21.4 points per contest. That was a start so dominant that it had us speculating on the Cavs’ place in history, and it made the idea of the Raptors winning even a single game feel remote. But the Raptors promptly won two straight to tie the series (before eventually being closed out in six games). Faint consolation for Cleveland, but in dire times, it may have to serve.Check out our latest NBA predictions. More: Apple Podcasts | ESPN App | RSS | Embed In 15 tries since the NBA adopted its modern playoff structure in 1984, only one team has gotten out of an 0-2 Finals hole: the 2006 Miami Heat. That team clawed its way back when Dwyane Wade put on maybe the greatest individual performance in Finals history, the kind of thing LeBron James is also capable of doing. But those Heat hadn’t played anywhere near as poorly as the Cavs have through two Finals games.It gets worse: If we expand our view to include all best-of-seven series since 1984, we find that 6 percent of teams with an 0-2 deficit have gone on to win the series, none of which were dominated as thoroughly as the Cavs. First and foremost among the exceptions: the 1995 Houston Rockets. Despite being defending champs, the Rockets went into their second-round series against the Phoenix Suns as underdogs, and were beaten by 46 combined points in games 1 and 2. Back in Houston for Game 3, they rolled over the Suns by 33. But they lost Game 4 at home and had to gut out three consecutive victories, the last of which was sealed with Mario Elie’s “Kiss of Death”: read more

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Facebook could hand over identity data for users suspected of hate speech

first_imgHate speech has been a nasty problem on social media. Graphic by Pixabay; illustration by CNET Facebook has struck a deal with France to turn over identity information on users suspected of posting hate speech on the platform, Reuters reported Tuesday. Digital Affairs Minister Cédric O said he reached an agreement with the social media site, according to the report. Facebook has also been using artificial intelligence technology to combat the increasing problems of fake accounts, fake news and hate speech. Between October 2018 and March 2019, Facebook took down more than 3 billion fake accounts, estimating that around 5% of monthly active accounts are fake. The deal with France came after talks between French President Emmanuel Macron and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Reuters said, adding that Facebook already hands over identity data like IP addresses to French authorities for users suspected of terrorist activity. The hate speech deal was made last week in a meeting between O and Nick Clegg, Facebook head of global affairs, the report said. “It means that the judicial process will be able to run normally,” O told Reuters. “It’s really very important, they’re only doing it for France.” A Facebook spokesperson told CNET that the company will “scrutinize every order” it receives from French authorities “and push back if is overbroad, inconsistent with human rights or legally defective.” “As a matter of course, we will no longer refer French law enforcement authorities to the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty process to request basic information in criminal hate speech cases,” the spokesperson added in an emailed statement Tuesday afternoon. Mobile Mobile Apps Politics Online Inside Facebook’s election war room Facebook: New AI tech spots hate speech faster Twitter, Facebook ban far-right figures for fake accounts, hate speech Facebook takes down more than 3 billion fake accounts Share your voice Facebook combats hate speech 13:29 Now playing: Watch this: 41 What Facebook and Google say they’re doing to combat… 9 Photos Comments Tags The AI being used by the social media giant’s engineers is called self-supervised learning and enables the tech behind the site to adapt faster to spotting new forms of hate speech. “It’s really easy to lose hope, to pack up and go home,” Mike Schroepfer, Facebook chief technology officer, said in May. “But we can’t do that. We’re here to bring a better future to people, with technology.” Originally published June 25, 11:25 a.m. PT.   Update, 4:09 p.m.: Adds comment from Facebook. Facebooklast_img read more

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Texas Senate Passes TwoYear Budget With Money For Property Tax Cuts —

first_img Share The Senate’s spending plan also contains a provision directing the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to cut costs by $900 million. If included in the final version signed by Gov. Greg Abbott, it would mark the sixth consecutive two-year budget to order the health commission to eke out savings from its operations.Nelson said that without cost-cutting measures, the health and human services portion of the budget was “going to continue to crowd out other priorities.”“We must continue looking for ways to have more efficient use of our limited resources,” she said.Emma Platoff, Aliyya Swaby and Shannon Najmabadi contributed to this report.This piece was originally published in The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.  Juan Figueroa/The Texas TribuneSenate Finance Chair Jane Nelson, R-Flower Mound, said the state funds set aside in the budget for property tax reform “will conform to whatever solution for tax relief is agreed to this session.”The Texas Senate on Tuesday approved a two-year, $248 billion spending plan that includes $2.7 billion for a nebulous goal of property tax “relief” — but with seven weeks left in the 2019 legislative session, the upper chamber has yet to rally behind a way to spend those funds.The Senate budget also includes a $6.3 billion boost for public schools — about $4 billion of which would increase teachers’ and librarians’ annual salaries by $5,000, with $2.3 billion set aside for unspecified aid to school districts. And it orders the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to cut Medicaid expenses by nearly $1 billion, without identifying a way of doing so.“We must take action this session to provide meaningful, lasting property tax relief,” said state Sen. Jane Nelson, a Flower Mound Republican and the Senate’s lead budget writer.The $2.7 billion in state funds set aside to pay for local property tax cuts “will conform to whatever solution for tax relief is agreed to this session,” she said.The Senate passed the two-year spending plan unanimously. The vote sets the stage for negotiations between the two chambers; the House unanimously approved its own version of a spending plan last month.Both chambers approved budgets with similar price tags, and both have agreed to pump an additional $9 billion in state funds into the public education portion of the budget. But crucial differences remain between the proposals favored by House Speaker Dennis Bonnen and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick.The House backed a plan that would would lower school district tax rates statewide by 4 cents per $100 of taxable value, enough to reduce the annual property taxes paid by the owner of a $250,000 home by about $100. Texans in higher-tax school districts would see greater tax reductions under the proposal, with relief offered to both homeowners and business owners.The Senate, meanwhile, has offered up a host of property tax proposals that remain stalled at various stages of the legislative process. A bill by state Sen. Paul Bettencourt, R-Houston, would increase the state’s homestead exemption, pending approval by voters. It would shave off $10,000 from a homeowner’s taxable value, reducing annual school district taxes by roughly $100, depending on local tax rates. That bill was left pending in committee.Another Bettencourt proposal would force a school district to hold an election if it seeks to increase the tax rate by more than 2.5 percent from one year to the next. That bill, whose cost is still unknown, according to state officials, has not yet been heard in committee.“There’s multiple permutations,” Bettencourt told The Texas Tribune last week, after the House passed its proposal to lower school district property tax rates as part of a massive public education overhaul. “That’s what’s called the legislative process.”While the Senate is aggressively pushing a proposal that would limit the growth of property tax revenues raised by cities and counties, it would have only minimal effects on the state budget compared with proposals that rein in school district taxes. That’s because the state shares a responsibility with local governments to pay for public schools. School district taxes make up the majority of total property tax revenues raised throughout Texas.Earlier Tuesday, Bonnen told a Lubbock talk-radio host there wasn’t much daylight between the two chambers on property taxes.“On this issue, I don’t think you’re going to see significant differential between the House and Senate,” Bonnen said. “The reality of it is we’re all pretty close on where we’re going.”Over roughly three hours, Senators touted a host of other priorities funded in their budget, including $230 million to maintain health benefits for retired teachers, $157 million to maintain graduate medical education opportunities for medical school graduates, and more than $1 billion across state agencies for cybersecurity and technological improvements.last_img read more

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