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U-23 Lone Star Hosts BYC at ATS

first_imgNational U-23 soccer squad, Satellites also known as the Liberia Olympic football team, is expected today to host triple Super Cup title holder, BYC I, in continuation of friendly engagements at the Antoinette Tubman Stadium in Monrovia. The time is 8:30am.Today’s match may likely conclude the final selection of the 20-man squad against Ghana’s Black Meteors in Accra in the 2015 CAF Cup U23 finals first qualifying round on Sunday, April 26.A successful two-leg tie against the Black Meteors would see the Satellite (U-23 Lone Star) play Congo in the second qualifying round.If the Satellites (U-23 Lone Star) survive that test too, they will face Nigeria in the final qualifying round, which looks like a difficult qualification route for the Thomas Kojo’s boys.The April 26 encounter in Accra would be the junior national soccer team’s first appearance on the continental scene, since the outbreak of the deadly Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in March-2014.A month ago, two Liberian football clubs, BYC FC and Fassell were ejected on a 2-1 and 4-3 aggregates, which football analysts have graded the two sides of relatively performing satisfactorily having been match-rusty for over eight months owing to the pandemic.The Secretary General of the LFA, Alphonso Armah told the Daily Observer in an exclusive interview yesterday via mobile phone that the Thomas Kojo’s boys would depart the country next Wednesday, April 26 to get acclimatize to the Ghanaian hot weather.The 2015 CAF U-23 Championship qualifying rounds will decide the participating teams of the 2015 CAF U-23 Championship, a youth football tournament organized by CAF for the under-23 national teams of their member associations. A total of eight teams will play in the final tournament, to be hosted by Senegal.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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‘NEC Should Axe Code of Conduct Clause’

first_imgThe Governance Commission (GC) has made a strong recommendation to the National Elections Commission (NEC) to declare the Code of Conduct’s exclusion rule inapplicable.The GC made reference to Part V Sections 5.1 and 5.2 of the Code of Conduct that seek to exclude from candidacy, high officials of the Executive Branch of government, who did not resign from their positions at least three years prior to the holding of elections. The GC said its recommendation was made in view of the doubts about the constitutionality of the provision, as it is now under challenge and the disruptive effect its enforcement will have on the October 2017 elections, and recommended that “the provision should be considered inapplicable to the presidential and legislative elections in the same manner and spirit the 10-year constitutional provision was considered inapplicable to the 2005 and 2011 elections.”In 2009, the Executive Branch of Government submitted a bill – the Code of Conduct – to the Legislature for passage into law, prescribing the activities of public officials. The Code of Conduct, after languishing at the Capitol for nearly five years, was ratified by the lawmakers and signed by the President. It took effect as of 2014, and is referred to as the Code of Conduct 2014.The GC’s recommendation on the Code of Conduct was just one of several made to the government in its Annual Governance Report (2016), presented last week to the President of Liberia, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.The Code The completion of the Code of Conduct raised a storm, because of its decision that government officials interested in contesting for public office should resign three years before the elections. It also received huge public commendations, citing provisions regarding the conduct of public officials, who many see flouting the laws.The 3-year clause was challenged by some civil society organizations; but the Supreme Court could not hear the case, suggesting that those who were affected should rather come to court and make their case.While the argument was on, former Foreign Minister Augustine Kpehe Ngafuan announced his resignation, stating his decision was in line with the provisions of the Code of Conduct on the exclusion rule.At the time, former Executive Governor of the Central Bank of Liberia Dr. J. Mills Jones had toured the country providing to locals with access to finance to build their businesses in an arrangement that received public support. However, politicians denounced him, claiming he had political ambitions, seeing the exercise as an effort to win the people to his side.Therefore, many political hawks saw Dr. Jones’s passionate provision of financial access to the people as an undue advantage to endear himself to the people. However, sources said that providing access to loans to poor Liberians was part of the Central Bank’s policy that was not explored to benefit the people during previous administrations.The situation seemed to have been given a cold shoulder until the GC raised it and suggested that the portion that raised eyebrows should be declared ‘inapplicable.’The GC, in additional recommendations, said the NEC must align its process of certification of political candidates with decisions from the Supreme Court. The GC said early certification of candidates led to the filing of numerous writs of prohibitions and the exacerbation of tension, confusion and negative aspersions on the electoral system.“The Supreme Court and the NEC would do well to ensure expeditious and properly aligned processes of the court ruling and NEC’s certification,” the GC said.It suggested to the government that preparing for referendum on Constitution amendment propositions should be adopted by the Legislature before the end of the 2017 legislative session.“The NEC will do well to begin the process of preparing for a referendum on the propositions, including the mobilization of financial and material support early in 2018, following the 2017 elections,” it said.It also recommended, among other things, that the NEC and the Legislature should note that while the Constitution is said to be ambiguous about the holding of municipal elections, it is clear about the requirement to hold chieftaincy elections, adding that the Constitutional grounding of Liberia’s electoral democracy is incomplete as at now, without addressing electoral requirements at local levels of governance.The GC suggested that the challenge should be joined by the NEC following the October polls.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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Relationship with Exxon must be based on accountability, openness – President

first_imgPresident David Granger has said that Government will be working with ExxonMobil to develop a long-term relationship founded on transparency, accountability, openness, and aligned interests for the good of Guyana.During a State House meeting with a visiting delegation of ExxonMobil executives on Wednesday, President Granger said that, at the end of the process, GuyaneseThe meeting between ExxonMobil executives and President David Granger on Wednesdaymust be able to view the development of a petroleum industry as one that is beneficial to the national interest.“We are at the start of an oil and gas industry and we want to ensure that our people are involved… We are happy with the way things are going so far, and we want to assure you of the Government’s commitment to transparency and accountability.“We take decisions at the Cabinet level, and then those decisions are taken to the National Assembly; and we do not see that process changing. All Guyanese must feel involved in the process,” Granger said.The meeting with the ExxonMobil delegation discussed matters related to the status of exploratory and appraisal work being done in the Stabroek Block, as well as the relationship between Government and that company.The President noted the importance of regular and accurate announcements on matters pertaining to the development of the sector, and added that Guyanese must be involved, especially in the mainstream opportunities which are available in the industry.“We have got to keep the public informed, to ensure that civil society does not feel that there is some underhand relationship which is injurious to the country. We want to make the right steps, and we are looking to see that the population get the education they need to participate in this industry.“We are looking to ensure that this industry generates employment for our people, and as part of our partnership, I hope that we can have a programme which can help to educate Guyanese on this industry,” he said.To ensure a long-term and mutually beneficial relationship, the President said, Government is working to develop the requisite framework and strengthen capacity in areas which establish and maintain good governance.Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman also attended the meeting, and echoed the President’s sentiments, stating that the engagement is part of an ongoing dialogue that aims to strengthen the relationship between Guyana and ExxonMobil for the benefit of the Guyanese people.Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of ExxonMobil Corporation, Darren Woods, in an invited comment, described the meeting as fruitful, noting that the Government’s commitment to transparency and accountability was discussed in detail. He said the administration’s commitment is welcomed, since the company’s interests and aims are in alignment with this.“I think it is a very productive conversation that we just had. The Government is looking to make sure that we develop the resources, and that we do it the right way — that can benefit the community and the people of Guyana.We are very committed to that ourselves, and we had a lot of discussions and dialogue to see how best we can do that to benefit ExxonMobil, the Government and the people of Guyana,” he is quoted by the Ministry of the Presidency as saying.Woods said ExxonMobil remains committed to its investments in Guyana, and is swiftly moving ahead with its production plans.The meeting was also attended by ExxonMobil’s executives: Country Manager and Project Executive, Rod Henson; ExxonMobil’s Guyana Senior Director of Public and Government Affairs, Kimberly Brasington; and Director of Government Relations, Carlton James. Also attending the meeting were ministers Basil Williams, Joseph Harmon and Dominic Gaskin.last_img read more

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North America or Morocco for 2026 World Cup – FIFA votes

first_imgOn the eve of the 2018 World Cup in Russia, 207 FIFA member nations will cast their vote in a congress of world football’s governing body.Morocco’s bid for 2026 was only cleared to advance to the runoff vote earlier this month, despite a FIFA evaluation report that classified the north African nation’s stadiums, accommodation and transport as “high risk”.Morocco received only 2.7 out of five, with red flags raised over several critical components of the bid.A FIFA summary of the bid taskforce’s findings warned “the amount of new infrastructure required for the Morocco 2026 bid to become reality cannot be overstated”.The report left the US-Canada-Mexico bid as the clear front-runner after giving it a rating of four out of five.– Referendum on Trump? –The North American bid leaders fear the vote could become a referendum on US President Donald Trump © AFP / Brendan SmialowskiBut the North American bid has been dogged by concerns that the vote could become a referendum on the popularity of US President Donald Trump.Bid leader Carlos Cordeiro on Monday repeated a message he has hammered out again and again in recent months — vote on us, not Trump.“We believe strongly that this decision will be made on its merits,” Cordeiro said in a conference call with reporters. “This is not geopolitics, we’re talking about football and what is fundamentally, at the end of the day, the best interest of football and our footballing community…. We’ve had no backlash.”The bid to bring the World Cup back to North America for the first time since 1994 has backing from former Manchester United and England midfielder David Beckham, who ended his career at LA Galaxy and is behind a nascent Major League Soccer franchise in Miami.“A football competition as big as the World Cup deserves to be in great places and if the US, Canada and Mexico get that it will be very special,” Beckham said.The US lost out to Qatar in 2022 in a vote now tarnished by corruption allegations that spelled the beginning of the end of the once all-powerful FIFA president Sepp Blatter.The corruption-tainted nature of that vote in 2010 vote prompted FIFA to overhaul its bidding process for the World Cup. Whereas previously the 24 members of the FIFA executive committee used to determine World Cup races, the hosts will now be decided by a vote of individual FIFA member nations.Critics of the Morocco bid also point to the fact that the 2026 World Cup will be the first to be expanded to 48 teams, posing a severe test for the hosts.FIFA President Gianni Infantino is believed to strongly support the North American bid because the three countries involved backed him for the presidency in 2016 when he took over after the reign of Blatter, who is being investigated in Switzerland for alleged corruption.– Fourth time lucky? –But the north Africans are still considered to be in with a genuine chance.Morocco has tried, and failed, four times before, in votes for the 1994, 1998, 2006 and 2010 tournaments — it lost out in the latter to South Africa, the only African nation ever to have hosted football’s global showpiece.Morocco has the support of many European countries, attracted by its geographical proximity, and most of Africa, in line with a call from the head of the Confederation of African Football, Ahmad Ahmad.But two English-speaking African countries, Liberia and South Africa, have defected to the North America bid.Morocco’s bid leader Moulay Hafid Elalamy says the bid is based on the “fervour for football in the country and the entire African continent” and promises all the host cities will be less than an hour’s flight apart.North American bid leaders countered by promising to deliver a record $11 billion profit.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Will North America or Morocco win the chance to host the 2026 World Cup © AFP/File / Patrik STOLLARZMoscow, Russian Federation, Jun 11 – FIFA members will decide on Wednesday whether the 2026 World Cup should be played in North America or in Morocco, taking football’s global showpiece to Africa for just the second time.The choice is clear — between a slick bid based on gleaming stadiums in the United States, Mexico and Canada or an ambitious attempt from Morocco based on as-yet largely unbuilt facilities.last_img read more

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Rate of savings may be wrong

first_img “The decline in the U.S. personal savings rate and the dearth of internal saving raise concerns for the future,” The San Francisco Federal Reserve said in a November note titled “Spendthrift Nation.” To prepare for retirement, “aging workers should be building their nest eggs and paying down debt,” the note said. “Instead, many of today’s workers are saving almost nothing and taking on large amounts of adjustable-rate debt with payments programmed to rise with the level of interest rates. Failure to boost saving in the years ahead may lead to some painful adjustments in the future.” The note blames “ongoing credit industry innovations (the growth of subprime lending, home equity loans, exotic mortgages, etc.)” for expanding consumer access to borrowed money and reducing consumers’ perceived need for precautionary savings. It also blames individuals’ eagerness to jump into “long-lived bull markets in stocks and housing,” which came at the same time nominal interest rates were falling. “Reminiscent of the widespread margin purchases by unsophisticated investors during the stock market mania of the late 1990s, today’s housing market is characterized by an influx of new buyers, record transaction volume, and a growing number of property acquisitions financed almost entirely with borrowed money,” the note said. Bernard Baumohl, executive director of The Economic Outlook Group, said Americans are increasingly dependent on borrowed money. In 1980, about 78 percent of spending was financed from wages and salaries, he said. By 1990, the figure had dropped to 71 percent and it’s been falling ever since. In January, it slipped to 64 percent. “With borrowing costs on the rise and the wealth effect from real estate assets diminishing, something has to give,” he said. The federal government’s stance is that we should – and will – change our ways. The Bureau of Labor Statistics, in a report covering the employment and economic outlook for 2004 to 2014, predicted such a change. “Over the projection period … the personal savings rate is projected to improve gradually, from 1.8 percent in 2004 to 3.4 percent in 2014,” according to the publication. How? The bureau projects that income will grow at a slower 2.9 percent annual rate between 2004 and 2014, but personal consumption will drop. While economists wrangle over savings, the White House clearly thinks it’s an issue. Vice President Dick Cheney, speaking at a conference on how to encourage people to boost savings and be better prepared for retirement, urged Americans to do a better job saving. “The American dream begins with saving money and that should begin on the very first day of work,” Cheney said. 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 MORECasino Insider: Here’s a look at San Manuel’s new high limit rooms, Asian restaurant European countries count capital gains and home appreciation when they calculate personal savings, said William Hummer, chief economist at Wayne Hummer Investments. “Our savings rate is understated,” he said. “I think it’s wrong.” Another argument is that the wealthiest 20 percent of American families account for roughly 40 percent of consumer spending, spending roughly 4.5 times as much as the lowest 20 percent, something Citigroup’s chief U.S. equities strategist Tobias M. Levkovich pointed out in a recent report. The implication: This group isn’t going to run out of money any time soon. If a healthy economy depends on the wealthiest Americans’ continued spending on $200 haircuts and $500 seven-ply cashmere sweaters, we can all rest easy. His corollary argument is that some of those with the lowest earnings are retirees, who are spending money they’ve already socked way, so the fact that they spend $18,000 a year but earn only $9,000 should worry no one. The other side argues that American consumers simply spend way too much. NEW YORK – Now that America’s savings rate has been negative for an entire year, a first since the Great Depression, the question is whether we’re a spendthrift nation on its way to the poorhouse or whether we’re looking at the wrong numbers when we calculate savings. The personal savings rate is, essentially, the amount of after-tax income left once household bills are paid. Maybe it’s $75 for a household, maybe it’s $7,500, but as a percentage of income, it’s declining. The personal savings rate used to be 10 percent of disposable income from 1974 to 1984, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It fell to 4.8 percent by 1994, and was negative for all of 2005. As of January, the personal savings rate was minus-0.7 percent. With retirement looming soon for the baby boomer generation, the concern is that a dearth of savings now could cause a cutoff in spending later. Some economists say that’s far-fetched. They argue that the personal savings figures are artificially low, since the numbers don’t include increases in assets such as equities and homes. Yale University economics professor William D. Nordhaus made that argument in 2002 congressional testimony, saying that once assets were included, the savings rate for the 1990s would have been a robust 25 percent. last_img read more

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MARY AND MICHAEL ‘LIGHT’ UP THE LIVES OF SO MANY!

first_imgWhoriskey’s Christmas lights in Kerrykeel have gained all but legendary status in Donegal.From humble beginnings, the lights (which can allegedly be seen from space!) have now cult status.But they’re certainly not just for show. In fact, this year yet again the lights have once again helped to raise a considerable amount of cash for two very important charities.A total of €7,400 was raised and was divided between the Donegal Hospice and the Irish Kidney Association (Donegal branch).The Whoriskeys presented two cheques to the organisations and have also publicly thanked all those who donated money as well as those who attended their fundraising concert and quiz.MARY AND MICHAEL ‘LIGHT’ UP THE LIVES OF SO MANY! was last modified: February 4th, 2016 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:charityCHristmasdonegalKERRYKEELWhoriskey’s lightslast_img read more

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Matchday 10: How the Premier League table could change this weekend

first_imgAfter a packed week of Champions League and Europa League games, the Premier League is back this weekend and, let’s face it, the EPL is what it’s all about.We saw some brilliant games last weekend, including the four-goal thriller between Chelsea and Manchester United, which ended in a 2-2 draw. 6 6 Southampton vs Newcastle – Saturday, October 26 (kick-off 3pm) – CLICK HERE TO LISTEN LIVEManchester United vs Everton – Sunday, October 27 (kick-off 4pm) – CLICK HERE TO LISTEN LIVE 6 But how can the Premier League table look at the end of matchday 10? Using data from Sportsvisualized.com, talkSPORT.com reveals the highest and lowest potential position for each team at the end of this round of fixtures.You can see the results, below…20. NewcastleHighest possible position – 17thLowest possible position – 20th19. HuddersfieldHighest possible position – 16thLowest possible position – 20th18. FulhamHighest possible position – 13thLowest possible position – 20th17. Cardiff CityHighest possible position – 13thLowest possible position – 20th 13. BurnleyHighest possible position – 12thLowest possible position – 18th12. BrightonHighest possible position – 10thLowest possible position – 13th11. Leicester CityHighest possible position – 9thLowest possible position – 12th10. Manchester UnitedHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 12th 5. TottenhamHighest possible position – 1stLowest possible position – 7th4. ArsenalHighest possible position – 1stLowest possible position – 7th talkSPORT’s Premier League commentaries Neil Warnock celebrates Cardiff’s victory 3. Chelsea Highest possible position – 1stLowest possible position – 5th2. LiverpoolHighest possible position – 1stLowest possible position – 5th1. Manchester CityHighest possible position – 1stLowest possible position – 5th It was not to be for West Ham at the London Stadium against Tottenham Bournemouth players celebrate 6 Arsenal produced a brilliant second-half performance to beat Leicester to make it ten wins in a row Manchester United boss Jose Mourinho reacts in the 2-2 draw with Chelsea. This week, the 10th matchday of the campaign, we’ve got some more great games, although they’re all quite unpredictable.And Tottenham hosting Manchester City at Wembley should top it all off rather neatly. 6 6 9. WolvesHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 11th8. EvertonHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 11th7. WatfordHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 9th6. BournemouthHighest possible position – 6thLowest possible position – 9th 16. SouthamptonHighest possible position – 13thLowest possible position – 19th15. Crystal PalaceHighest possible position – 13thLowest possible position – 18th14. West HamHighest possible position – 13thLowest possible position – 18thlast_img read more

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Fuel industry ‘must address shortages’

first_img19 January 2012Following a spate of shortages caused by unplanned shutdowns of fuel refineries, Members of Parliament have urged South Africa’s fuel industry to come up with a coordinated plan to avoid disruptions to the country’s supply.It emerged during the meeting between members of Parliament’s energy portfolio committee and the fuel industry representatives in Durban on Wednesday that it was difficult to avoid fuel shortages during unplanned shutdowns as it took three weeks for fuel to be imported from overseas.“We have invited the fuel industry to facilitate the sharing of ideas and trends on the issues of security of fuel supply,” said committee chairman Sisa Njikelana, adding that there was currently no consensus on how to deal with the issue of fuel reserves.“Some believe that the industry needs more new refineries while others argue that all that is needed is for the existing refineries to be upgraded,” he said.More fuel supply problems aheadA warning has been issued that more fuel supply problems will occur as the country’s largest refinery, Sapref in Durban, has gone into full shutdown for unplanned repairs. It was reported the refinery would only be back in full production by mid-February.The Mercury newspaper reported the refinery shut down at the beginning of the year because of a lack of crude oil during unplanned repairs undertaken at Durban’s Single Buoy Mooring (SBM). Up to 80% of South Africa’s crude oil is imported through the SBM.It supplies the Sapref and Enref (Engen) refineries in Durban, as well as the Natref refinery in Sasolburg via the pipeline.Petrol giant Shell halted deliveries after a leak at its Alberton depot led to the shut down of operations recently. Chevron plans to have a major shutdown next month.Infrastructure upgrade neededThe fuel shortages have left fuel retailers fuming.Speaking during the meeting on Wednesday, SA Petroleum Retailers Association national director Peter Noke, questioned why the profit made by the fuel industry over the years was not used to upgrade refineries.“We need to upgrade the infrastructure and ensure that we have sufficient storage facilities inland,” he said.The association faced a mammoth task of answering the media in a manner that did not create panic during fuel shortages.SA Petroleum Industry Association executive director Avhapfani Tshifularo, said he was happy that different stakeholders had met to address the problem of fuel shortages.“It is important to talk about this because unplanned shutdowns make the supply too tight because it takes too long to get supplies from overseas,” he said.Sapalast_img read more

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Touring Joburg like never before

first_imgRay Maota A bus similar to this one in Cape Town will be used for tours in Johannesburg.(Image: City Sightseeing)MEDIA CONTACTS• Claus TworeckCity Sightseeing: CEO+ 27 21 511 6000RELATED ARTICLES• SA’s wine tourism, best in the world• SA becomes business tourism hub• German tourists in love with SA• SA minister gets top tourism postCome January 2013, tourists and locals in Johannesburg will get a chance to see the city in a way they have never done before.Bright red, open-topped buses will ferry passengers through an experience of the everyday sights and sounds, cultures and heritage of the city as part of a new tour operation by a company called City Sightseeing.The international city tour operator, which has been running a similar venture in Cape Town since 2002, has operations in 100 other countries around the world.CEO and founder of the Cape Town business, Claus Tworeck, would like the Johannesburg operation to benefit locals.“The tours promise to open up a whole new side of this amazing city for locals and tourists alike, and in doing so we will grow tourism spend while providing employment for the city’s residents.”This employment will come in the form of the locals working with City Sightseeing as ambassadors for the project. They are also targeting local tourists for the most part, as much as 60% of their clientèle.Greener busesThe four buses that will make up the Johannesburg tour operation comply with the Euro 4 standard for emissions and environmental impact.City Sightseeing South Africa is also the first bus company in the country to be declared carbon neutral and the first of the City Sightseeing franchises around the world to achieve this status.Seven years into its existence, the Cape Town branch was recognised as the International City Sightseeing Operator of the Year in 2009 in an annual competition that pits all the company’s international operations against each other. The accolade was a reward for their innovation, customer service, overall brand experience and their commitment to environmental sustainability.“We’re ecstatic! It’s especially satisfying knowing that we beat top international open top bus operators from cities like New York, Paris and London,” said Tworeck at the time.A single bus can carry 22 passengers on the bottom in single and double seats, and 55 passengers on top in double seats.Each seat has an FM radio attached and, with the headsets they receive when they board, passengers can listen to music while waiting for the bus to depart. Once the tour commences, the music stops and a tour guide takes over.Hopping on and offTo potential tourists, the company’s website describes Cape Town as a place that gives tourists a taste of the world in just one day: where one can have breakfast in a New York-style deli, lunch in an African shebeen, cocktails on a sunset cruise and dine in style in a fine British colonial restaurant, the advert further reads.The Johannesburg route is more history orientated. It begins at Gautrain Park Station and proceeds to Gandhi Square, then City Hall, Roof of Africa at the Carlton Centre, the James Hall Transport Museum, the Apartheid Museum and Gold Reef City, the Mining District, the World of Beer, the Newtown Precinct, the Origins Centre at Wits University, and ends at Constitution Hill.With the first tour at 9am, the buses will operate on a hop-on, hop-off basis at designated stops along the route so the passengers can use the time to explore the city in their own way before getting on the next one. There will be 30-minute intervals between the last bus and the next one at each stop.It costs R140 (US$20) for the day trip, but a 20% discount is guaranteed for online bookings. School groups can book tours for weekdays during school terms.“The buses will change people’s perception of the city,” said Tworeck.The tours are also family orientated as there is no smoking or alcohol allowed on the bus.“Good news for parents is that our buses are child-friendly. Children receive a free activity book on the bus and can also join our kids club,” said Tworeck.Aiming for local passengersThe perception of downtown Johannesburg as a criminals’ haven has changed in the last decade with greater police visibility and investment by city authorities in monitoring former crime hotspots with closed circuit camera technology.With many of its historic buildings restored, and its heritage sites, art and food markets, Johannesburg has seen changes for the better in its look.With the tours, City Sightseeing is aiming for a large percentage of their customers, 60%, to be locals who will be able to see these changes for themselves. Tworeck said their goal is to promote domestic tourism.Dawn Roberston, the chief executive of the Gauteng Tourism Authority, welcomed the business venture.“We are very excited about the new hop-on hop-off buses,” she said. “They are sure to become a premier tourism experience in Johannesburg. In future we are looking at bringing the buses to Pretoria too.”last_img read more