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LSH reverses office closure programme
Stay home, President says
Jokowi said that while Transportation Minister Budi Karya Sumadi had tested positive for the virus, the rest of the Cabinet had already been tested for COVID-19 earlier on Sunday morning.Jokowi said he would have himself tested for COVID-19 on Sunday afternoon.Read also: Where in the world was Indonesian minister before announced as COVID-19 positive?“I ask all the people of Indonesia to stay calm, not to panic, to stay productive and to be more alert, so that we can slow down and stop the spread of COVID-19,” said the President who was receiving test hours after making the speech.Jokowi’s speech came as public and international concerns grew over whether the Indonesian government had been doing enough to prevent a sustained community transmission of the highly contagious disease.Regional heads in a number of areas — including Jakarta, Banten and West Java — have decided to temporarily close schools and public areas in an effort to contain the coronavirus. They have also called on the government to allow them to conduct polymerase chain reaction (PCR) testing to isolate infected people and prevent a wider contagion.In a letter, World Health Organization director general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus urged Jokowi to scale up the country’s emergency response mechanisms for containing the COVID-19 outbreak by, among other things, declaring a national state of emergency.Tedros said the agency had “seen undetected or under-detected cases at the early stages of the outbreak [which] result in significant increases in cases and deaths in some countries” and asked Indonesia to intensify case finding, contact tracing, monitoring, quarantine of contacts and isolation of cases.Read also: COVID-19: WHO urges Jokowi to declare national emergencyMembers of the Indonesian Young Scientists Forum (YSF) have also sent a letter to the Office of the Presidential Staff asking the government to impose a lockdown on several areas.“We recommend a lockdown for regions that have seen confirmed cases double within a day,” Fenny Dwivanily, a molecular biologist at the Bandung Institute of Technology and a member of the YSF, told The Jakarta Post on Saturday.The scientists said the government might have missed the chance to contain the virus by failing to detect, test and isolate the first suspected patients in time. One indicator for that was that the government did not report any cases in January and February and only begun reporting cases in March. Within less than two weeks, the tally exponentially rose from zero to 96 cases.“There was a delay in the containment effort so that would make it more difficult for the government to control the spread of the virus. We could see a situation that resembles the ones in Italy and Iran or even worse,” they said.Syahrizal Syarief, an epidemiologist at the University of Indonesia, said Jokowi should follow the WHO’s recommendation to declare a national emergency.“The legal aspect of declaring [an emergency] is that the government will have the right to issue national reserves in the form of money and other resources. That means the finance minister could allocate funds from the state budget with no need to seek approval from the House of Representatives,” he said.He also suggested that the government use the 1984 Communicable Disease Outbreak Law and the 2018 Health Quarantine Law to address the crisis. The laws stipulate that a lockdown should be imposed on areas where community transmissions have occurred.The government revealed that confirmed cases had been found in West Java, Surakarta in Central Java, Yogyakarta, Bali, Manado in North Sulawesi and Pontianak, West Kalimantan. It has set up a fast-response team led by National Disaster Mitigation Agency head Doni Monardo.“The WHO has declared it [the coronavirus] a pandemic, so now the status is a non-natural disaster,” Doni told the media on Saturday.Topics : President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo is calling on all Indonesians to just stay home as the country of 270 million people braces for the worst pandemic in recent memory.In his first national address on the COVID-19 outbreak on Sunday, the President highlighted the importance of practicing what is called “social distancing” to stop the spread of the coronavirus that has already claimed thousands of lives worldwide.“Under the current conditions, it’s time for us to work from home, study from home and worship at home,” Jokowi said at a press conference at Bogor Palace in West Java on Sunday. “It’s time for us to work together, to help each other, to unite and cooperate. We want this to be a community movement, so that the COVID-19 problem can be addressed to the fullest.” Read also: Social distancing: What it is and why it’s the best tool we have to fight the coronavirusAs of Sunday afternoon, Indonesia recorded 117 confirmed COVID-19 cases, five of which ended as fatalities. Scientists, however, believe that the number is much higher than the official tally, saying the government’s lethargic response to the health crisis could have cost it a window of opportunity to contain the virus’ spread.The President said he would leave the decision of whether to declare states of emergency up to the individual regional heads. “As a large country and an archipelago, the spread of COVID-19 varies from region to region,” he said. “Therefore, I ask all governors, regents and mayors to continue to monitor their respective regions and consult with medical experts and the National Disaster Mitigation Agency [BNPB] to determine the emergency levels in their regions.”He added that the government guaranteed it had enough stocks of staple goods to meet everyone’s needs. “We have also prepared economic incentives, as has been announced by the coordinating economic minister, so that the business world can carry on as usual,” he said.
Oxfam urges rescue to stop ‘half a billion more’ in poverty
International aid group Oxfam on Thursday urged world leaders to agree a comprehensive rescue package to muster some US$2.5 trillion needed to prevent half a billion more people being pushed into poverty by the coronavirus pandemic. It warned that the economic fallout of the coronavirus risked setting back the fight against poverty by a decade, and as much as 30 years in some regions including Africa and the Middle East.Oxfam cited research by the King’s College London and Australian National University estimating that as many as half a billion people could be forced into poverty, or 8 percent of the world’s population. Oxfam warned that while many wealthy nations have introduced multi-billion-dollar economic stimulus packages to support business and workers “most developing nations lack the financial firepower to follow suit.”Delivering the $2.5 trillion the UN estimates is needed to support developing countries through the pandemic would also require an additional $500 billion in overseas aid, Oxfam said. Read also: Coronavirus pandemic ‘amplifying’ poverty in UKMeanwhile, European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) president Suma Chakrabarti has called on the international community to join forces to combat the coronavirus pandemic, describing the demand for emergency financing as “huge”.He warned that the current crisis is the “greatest disruption to global economic activity since the Second World War”.The EBRD has already announced a 1.0 billion euro solidarity package and Chakrabarti said the developmental lender was now working on a second phase of its program.Topics : “An ‘Emergency Rescue Package for All’ would enable poor countries to provide cash grants to those who have lost their income and to bail out vulnerable small businesses,” Oxfam said.Read also: Jakarta’s poor at risk as city drags feet on COVID-19 social assistanceAmong the measures that should be undertaken include the immediate cancellation of $1 trillion worth of developing country debt payments in 2020 and the creation of at least US$1 trillion in new international reserves.”G20 Finance Ministers, the IMF and World Bank must give developing countries an immediate cash injection to help them bail out poor and vulnerable communities,” said Jose Maria Vera, Oxfam International Interim Executive Director.
It’s not the economy, stupid: Stock markets soar to record highs
The record highs attained by Wall Street last week might come as welcome news for US President Donald Trump.But the booming stock markets will offer little solace to the many millions of people who have lost their jobs and livelihoods as the coronavirus pandemic pushes economies around the globe ever deeper into recession.”This is the great American comeback!” tweeted Trump’s deputy Mike Pence last Tuesday, after the S&P 500 stock index soared to a fresh historic high and the tech-rich Nasdaq notched up one record after the other in recent weeks. And with governments and central banks currently pumping vast amounts of money into their financial systems to avert a meltdown, and some companies in the S&P 500 upgrading their earnings forecasts for 2020 and even for 2021, the outlook could actually be rosier than the current economic data suggest.”The stock market is not the economy,” said Richard Hunter, head of markets at Interactive Investor.High techA number of companies are already starting to publish better-than-expected earnings with activity picking up again as many countries begin to ease the draconian lockdowns imposed in the second quarter. At a time when working from home, online streaming and social networks are an increasingly integral part of everyday life, it is technology companies that are currently tending to shine, while other sectors of the economy pick up the pieces from the economic disaster wrought by the pandemic.Apple, for example, booked net profit of US$11 billion in the three months to June. And its share price has doubled since March, taking its market valuation to over $2 trillion, the highest ever seen on Wall Street. In 2016, tech stocks accounted for 20 percent of the S&P index. But their share has since risen to a third, according to Nicholas Colas, co-founder of the US firm, DataTrek Research. “Whether technology stocks have further to run is the multi-billion-dollar question,” said Richard Hunter at Interactive Investor.Patrick O’Hare, chief analyst at Briefing.com, appears to think they do. “The stock market remains convinced that the (US Federal Reserve) is never going to let any worst-case trading scenario unfold for the stock market.” By slashing interest rates to zero and rolling out massive bond purchasing programmes, central banks such as the US Fed have placed a sheltering hand over their financial systems. Riskier assetsIn March, the US Congress approved a mammoth $2.2-trillion recovery package, topped up by nearly $500 billion in April, and another one is under discussion. This is encouraging investors to bet on ever riskier assets in their hunt for returns, with stocks the prime candidates. While Wall Street fizzles, financial markets in other parts of the world are also performing well — Japan’s Nikkei index and Germany’s blue-chip DAX are similarly near their all-time highs — even if the mood is not quite so exuberant. “All the excess cash is systematically channeled into the American market, rather than to Asia or Europe,” said Christopher Dembik at Saxo Banque. Some of the enthusiasm had petered out by the end of the week and Wall Street’s performance on Friday was tepid.”One can’t necessarily take for granted that it will translate into a lower close for the stock market,” said Briefing.com analyst O’Hare. It was a “well-known fact that this stock market has generally greeted any weakness as a buying opportunity.”Late August is a notoriously slow trading period, which can produce big price swings on the least bit of news. But with a study by the US Fed showing that just over half of Americans own shares, it remains to be seen whether the current euphoria on Wall Street will last into November and swing the presidential election for Trump. Topics : However, the disconnect between the financial markets and the real economy could not be starker as coronavirus lockdowns destroy untold numbers of jobs and push even traditional economic powerhouses such as the US, Britain and Germany into unprecedented contractions. The US economy, the world’s biggest, contracted by 9.5 percent in the second quarter, Britain’s economic output shrank by 20.4 percent and Germany’s by 10.1 percent. For many, then, the party mood on stock markets might appear “indecent”, said Saxo Banque economist Christopher Dembik. But that was a “misunderstanding”, he said, as it is an investor’s job to place bets on the longer-term economic outlook.
China silent on detention of Australian journalist
Topics : There are fears Cheng could face a prolonged period of detention after reports in Australian media said she was being held under “residential surveillance”.”Our concerns for Ms Cheng are genuine and real,” Simon Birmingham, Australian minister for trade, tourism and investment told ABC News on Tuesday.Free media advocates also called for full information on her case.Chinese authorities should “disclose their reasons for holding” her or “release her immediately”, the Committee to Protect Journalists said, calling China the “world’s leading jailer of journalists”. Cheng has not been seen in public since being held, although Australian envoys in Beijing were able to speak to her on August 27.A foreign ministry spokesperson in Beijing batted away questions over the fate of the China-born journalist, who enjoyed a high profile as a business news presenter on CGTN.”I can’t give you any specifics,” Hua Chunying told reporters.”But you know China is a country governed by law… we will handle things according to the law.” Big beef The detention of Cheng, who conducted interviews with international CEOs for CGTN’s Global Business and BizTalk shows, has also sent shockwaves through China’s foreign journalist community.While the cause of her detention remains a mystery, she has written a number of Facebook posts critical of Chinese President Xi Jinping and the Chinese government’s approach to the COVID-19 outbreak.One post poked fun at Xi’s visit in March to Wuhan, the coronavirus ground zero: “The big story today, Dear Leader’s visit, triggered titters in the newsroom — waving to a big TV screen showing the coronavirus hospital in Wuhan apparently equals a visit.””In China… ‘serve the people’ goes the slogans [sic]… [the] reality is the opposite,” she wrote.Cheng also praised on Facebook a censored interview with doctor Ai Fen, who sounded an early alarm about the new virus in Wuhan.She has also spoken openly about domestic violence including at a UN Women China event in Beijing last year.China has ramped up its rhetoric against Australia since Canberra called for a probe into the outbreak.A senior Beijing envoy last week equated the push for a global inquiry to the betrayal of Julius Ceasar by Brutus, registering the “indignation, anger and frustration” felt by China at Australia.China has also bristled at Australia’s invocation of national security as a reason for investigations into foreign interference at its universities.It has been accused of retaliating with a litany of trade measures including probes into alleged dumping of Australian wines, suspending beef imports, and warnings to its citizens against travelling to Australia.Such acts fit a pattern of “coercive diplomacy”, according to a report by the Australian Strategic Policy Institute (ASPI).Cheng is the second high-profile Australian citizen to be detained in Beijing after writer Yang Hengjun was arrested in January 2019 on suspicion of espionage.Earlier this year, Australia warned its citizens they faced the risk of arbitrary detention if they travelled to China.AFP attempted to contact Cheng through WeChat and did not get any response.Her bio page has been pulled from the website of CGTN.But she is known to have two young children, both believed to currently be in Melbourne.”She’s really warm, very bright… very generous,” a friend of Cheng’s told AFP, requesting anonymity. China refused Tuesday to disclose why an Australian journalist working as an anchor for state TV has been detained for at least two weeks without charge.Cheng Lei, an anchor for CGTN, China’s English-language state broadcaster, has been held since at least August 14 but Australian diplomats say Beijing has given no reason for her detention.Her case is the latest to fray relations between the two countries which have withered over trade, security concerns about Chinese tech and Canberra’s push for a probe into the origins of the coronavirus pandemic.
From idea to reality: five years since the first subsea compression system
East Central Trojans Varsity Football Stats
East Central Trojans Varsity Football Stats.East Central vs Campbell Cty Varsity Football (8-21)Courtesy of Trojans Football Program Assistant Stewart Durham.
FL woman captures raw chicken come back to life, jump off table
Only in Florida!A video is going viral showing a piece of raw chicken starting to twitch before flinging itself off a plate and onto the floor.The video, taken by a woman in Florida, shows the bizarre scene unfolding in a restaurant as an onlooker screams.It was posted online about two weeks ago and has already been viewed millions of times.One explanation for the disturbing scene is that the chicken was just killed and the nerve endings were still firing.
Cricket captains bat for more matches on U.S. soil
FORT LAUDERDALE, USA (AFP) — India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni wants more matches in the United States despite a chaotic Twenty20 clash against the West Indies yesterday ending in a rain-hit no result.Heavy rain forced the game at the Central Broward Regional Park to be abandoned on Sunday, with India well-placed on 15-0 off two overs in pursuit of a modest 144-run target.The outcome completed a miserable day for the organisers who were forced to delay the start of the game by 40 minutes after technical problems caused a loss of television pictures.West Indies, the world champions in the format, claimed the two-match series after winning the first game on Saturday by just one run.Dhoni, whose side conceded the third-highest total of all-time in the format of 245 in the opening clash, said he definitely sees a future for T20 cricket in America’s crowded sports market.“This is one place where we can come back and play cricket – a triangular or four-nation series,” Dhoni said at yesterday’s presentation in comments carried by the Cricinfo website.“A tournament like that can give us more time to spend in the U.S. Yes, it will be a cramped schedule, but modern-day cricketers won’t mind it.“This is one place where spectators will come. The timing suits us. So it’s a win-win situation. It’s a good venue to continue cricket.”Carlos Brathwaite, leading the West Indies for the first time after the sacking of Darren Sammy, also looked forward to returning to Florida.“For me as a young leader to lead the players is an exciting experience. We want to remain champions and entertain the West Indies crowd. Most definitely we would love to come back here again,” he said.
AP Source: NFL cutting preseason in half, pushing back start
AP Source: NFL cutting preseason in half, pushing back start July 1, 2020 Associated Press Minus the usual minicamps, on-field practices and in-person weight training from April to June, players’ conditioning won’t be what it normally is. So, eliminating the first week of preseason games Aug. 13-16 will give them more time to ratchet up their football fitness.Teams will now play exhibitions Aug. 20-24 and Aug. 27-31 during what were originally the second and third weeks of exhibition play with all 32 teams playing one home and one road game. Most of those games will remain the same as originally scheduled although some matchups in that second slate will have to be changed so every team gets a game at home.The exhibition finales on Sept. 3 were also scrapped, giving teams more time to get ready for the regular season, which opens Sept. 10 with Houston at Kansas City.There are no changes to the regular season schedule. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe NFL will cut its preseason in half and push back the start of exhibition play so teams have more time to train following an all virtual offseason made necessary by the coronavirus pandemic, a person with knowledge of the decision told The Associated Press.The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the league hasn’t announced that the preseason will be cut from four games to two.The pandemic forced teams to conduct their entire offseason programs via videoconference. So, teams will be gathering together for the first time when training camps open July 28. More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL The league continues to draw up protocols, not only for COVID-19 mitigation but for ramping up practices during the first few weeks of training camp.The annual Hall of Fame Game pitting Pittsburgh and Dallas on Aug. 6 was recently scrapped as the induction ceremonies were pushed back to 2021.___Follow Arnie Melendrez Stapleton on Twitter: http://twitter.com/arniestapleton___