Africa

first_img Twitter blocked, journalism threatened in Nigeria June 10, 2021 Find out more Africa News News Africa Gap widens between good and bad performers in AfricaDramatic falls by countries that cracked down on mass unrestThe 2011 Arab Spring did not spill over into sub-Saharan Africa to the point of bringing down any governments, but some regimes had to face forceful political and social demands, and journalists covering demonstrations were often the victims of indiscriminate police repression or were targeted by police who did not want them covering the crackdown.This was the case in Angola (132nd), where many journalists were arrested during protests in September, and in Uganda (139th), which fell 43 places in the index after a year that will not be forgotten by its media. They were the targets of violence and surveillance during the presidential election in February and were targeted again during the brutal crackdown on the “Walk to Work” protests later in the year, when dozens of journalists were arrested.It was even worse in Malawi (146th), which plunged 67 places in the index, the biggest fall of any country in the world. Malawi’s journalists were treated like demonstrators during the crackdown on protests in the summer. Many were arrested and mistreated, and equipment was broken. A student and blogger, Robert Chasowa, who was found dead in September, was almost certainly murdered. Media that wanted to investigate the case were threatened. Before all this, Malawi’s media legislation had been toughened so much at the start of the year that some European partners suspended part of their aid.Closed and authoritarian countries near bottom of indexReporters Without Borders regards the situation in Rwanda (156th) and Equatorial Guinea (161st) as very grave because of the control that their governments exercise over the media and freedom of expression in general. They have been joined by Djibouti (159th), which fell 49 places. Its president, Ismael Omar Guelleh, was returned to office at the start of 2011 in an election that was decided in advance and gave the opposition no possibility of expressing itself in the media. There is no free press, six people who provide an exile radio station with information were jailed for four months, and social networks are closely monitored to ensure that there are no protests.The presence of Côte d’Ivoire in this same group of countries (sharing 159th position with Djibouti) could be misleading. Côte d’Ivoire has real media, unlike Guelleh’s Djibouti or Teodoro Obiang Nguema’s Equatorial Guinea, and they say what they think, unlike the media in Paul Kagame’s Rwanda, which have little freedom of expression. Côte d’Ivoire’s poor ranking reflects the dramatic impact that the post-election crisis had on the media in the first half of 2011, including harassment of all kinds, acts of violence and the murders of a journalist and a media worker. During the battle of Abidjan at the start of April, it was impossible for a journalist venture out into the city. Violence, censorship and prison give East Africa three worst rankingsThe three worst sub-Saharan rankings are all to be found in East Africa. Year after year, journalists continue to be exposed to the chaos and anarchy in Somalia (164th), a country embroiled in civil war and without a stable government since 1991. Four journalists were killed in Mogadishu in 2011. The bad ranking assigned to Omar al-Bashir’s Sudan (170th) was due to prior censorship, closures of newspapers, and arrests, prolonged detention and mistreatment of journalists. Finally, Eritrea (179th) came last in the index for the fifth year running. Freedom of opinion, like all the other freedoms, does not exist under the totalitarian dictatorship that President Issaias Afeworki has imposed on this Horn of Africa country. At least 30 journalists are currently detained in appalling conditions. Some have been held for more than 10 years.At the other end of the index, several African countries made significant progress or showed that respect for freedom of information has taken a firm hold in their societies.Good countries group gets biggerThe number of African countries that are in the top 50 of the index has risen from seven last year to nine this year, while the number that are in top 100 has risen from 24 to 27. The highest non-European country in the index is an African one and in fact it is in the top 10. It is Cape Verde (9th), a healthy democracy and model of good governance, where governments can be changed through the ballot box, as last summer’s presidential election again showed. Journalists there are completely free and all the political parties have access to the state media. Namibia (20th) also has an excellent ranking, better than Japan or the United Kingdom, for example.Botswana (42nd), which rose 20 places, and Comoros (45th), which rose 25 places, are now jostling Mali (25th) and Ghana (41st), Africa’s traditional leaders in respect for journalists.A spectacular jump and other notable improvementsNiger (29th) rose 75 places in the index, the biggest leap by any country in the world this year. The economic environment for Niger’s media is very precarious but they are free and benefit from favourable legislation. Media freedom violations have virtually disappeared. The improvement has been seen in both concrete and symbolic measures. At the end of 2011, Mahamadou Issoufou, who was elected president in the spring, became the first African head of state to sign the Declaration of Table Mountain, thereby undertaking to promote media freedom. Other African leaders could follow suit, such as Mohamed Ould Abdel Aziz, the president of Mauritania (67th), which rose 28 places thanks to the adoption of a law on the electronic media, the opening up of the broadcasting sector, and other developments. Its progress needs to be confirmed.Cameroon (97th) fell sharply in 2010 because of the journalist Bibi Ngota’s death in detention but recovered a respectable ranking in 2011 although light has yet to be shed on all aspects of his death and on the death in November of this year of Reporters Without Borders correspondent Jules Koum Koum, a journalist who wrote about corruption. Cameroon also badly needs to decriminalize media offences and modernize its communication law. Madagascar (84th) continued to improve for the second year running after plummeting in 2009 because of that year’s political crisis but, 2012, as an election year, will pose challenges.Soft underbellyThe absence of major incidents involving the media allowed Senegal (75th) to rise 18 places but the situation is fragile one month ahead of a presidential election that is likely to be tense. Like their Cameroonian counterparts, the Senegalese authorities are still not ready to protect journalists from prison sentences by decriminalizing media offences. Aside from abusive lawsuits, Liberia (110th) usually allows its media a great deal of freedom but it fell 26 places this year because journalists were attacked and media were closed during the presidential election in October and November, when challenger Winston Tubman boycotted the run-off against the incumbent, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf.South Sudan (111th), which became independent on 9 July, entered the index with a respectable ranking. The challenge for this country is to build a solid and viable state in a very unstable region while guaranteeing freedom of expression. It must make every effort to avoid sinking to the level of its neighbours. Download the full version Help by sharing this information to go further Follow the news on Africa Reporters Without Borders rallies former hostages in Paris, following the kidnapping of journalist Olivier Dubois. Time is pressing, 20 years after Burkinabe journalist’s murder June 7, 2021 Find out more Organisation Receive email alerts January 25, 2012 – Updated on January 20, 2016 Africa June 8, 2021 Find out more News News RSF_en last_img read more

Levels of consciousness in the boardroom: From complacent to framing

first_img 19SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr,Deedee Myers Deedee Myers is founder and CEO of DDJ Myers, Ltd. and co-founder of the Advancing Leadership Institute. For the past 20 years, she has been passionate about establishing and developing … Web: www.ddjmyers.com Details My work with boards is stimulating and invigorating because of the variety of thinking patterns, perspectives, and energetic engagement. Each person is there to contribute in a way he or she believes is important to adding value. Sometimes, there are boards with one or two verbally expressive board members carrying the dialogue. Other times, each board member is highly engaged in strategic dialogue with a robust exchange across the table. Once in awhile, there are multiple mindsets and consciousness levels that produce at least seven varieties of simultaneous conversation. When multiple conversation types are happening, it takes some effort to find the discussion thread and the desired outcome or result. One way the thread is found is to help people in the room determine their mindset—or perspective—regarding the conversation. What often happens is people behave in their own familiar embodied way and, many times, they do not realize that they may be moving too fast or shutting down strategic dialogue with too many detailed questions.I like to read, study theories, observe, and apply new supporting practices. Recently, the following framework is helping board members create awareness of their own perspective in—or not in—alignment with other board members. Which of the following consciousness levels is embodied in your boardroom conversations? Are there multiple levels in your boardroom? Which are the most prevalent? Which support your board in performing the highest?1. Complacent: What will be, will be. This perspective can look like partial or total inertia, as in napping while awake. We wake for socializing and connecting, and once in a while, we add immaterial comments such as “good idea,” “sounds good,” or “yes.”2. Social Loafing: This perspective lets others carry the conversation and makes decisions; they do it so well that we don’t need to add value. Our engagement and conversation style is mainly silent watching.3. Oversight/Micro Detail: This is deliberate or unconscious directing and micro checking. It is just our nature to be in charge. Oversight is needed at certain times, so be intentional in an oversight conversation, such as managing a breakdown that causes enterprise risk versus governance misuse.4. Questions/Inquiry/Curiosity: This perspective includes managing assumptions, fact- and data-checking, validating, or just showing curiosity that can take the conversation down a rabbit hole. The insatiable board member will often say, “I have just one more question,” about a budget or expense line item.5. Action Planning: In this perspective, people take an idea into action steps that may or may not align with the overall strategic vision, available resources, and other already approved initiatives.6. Strategic: Participants decide what business they are in and whom they serve in what way that aligns with their vision and mission.7. Framing: This is when participants ask the question beyond the first question, followed by a question beyond that question, just like a Babushka Doll, to get to the highest order question that needs dialogue. Contextualizing the issue, challenge, or opportunity for creative dialogue and moving the conversation to a higher consciousness level is where innovation is sparked and new possibilities emerge.Action Research in the BoardroomMany boards either aspire to or are moving toward a continual practice of higher-level performance. Start with a baseline that surfaces the embodied consciousness level in your boardroom. Assign one or two people to be observers and note the statements made, questions asked, and actions during meetings. Break down the statements into one of the above seven categories. Note that complacency and social loafing are forms of actions, and any word spoken is an action through speech. Some actions (or spoken words) produce compelling outcomes while others entrench or stagnate the progress. Your observers can be trained staff or external resources with objectivity and discernment. Another option is to record your meeting and send it via media file to a trained resource that listens and categorizes the consciousness and conversation. The observer does not need to know who is speaking; he or she just listens, observes, and categories.Why does observing and noticing consciousness and conversation patterns matter? Maybe you are more strategic than you think. Perhaps you are ready to start framing practice, or you might be one of the boards where 67% of the time, board members are bored. You might learn that the board jumps between oversight, inquiry, and complacency, and the CEO is asking you to be strategic.Get a baseline. Decide what consciousness level is needed in your boardroom. Put up the bumper guards so you stay in that lane. Have fun with learning and practicing this technique!last_img read more

Gold Coast mansion sells under the hammer after 45-minute auction

first_img6 Parklane Terrace, Sovereign Islands.A SOVEREIGN Islands mansion sold for $2.355 million under the hammer after a drawn-out auction on the weekend.The five-bedroom seven-bathroom house at 6 Parkland Terrace attracted four bidders according to Professional Vertullo Real Estate agent Chris Moyer.“There was a good crowd and four people bidding on it,” he said.“It took about 45 minutes and we had to work hard to get the money but at the end of the day the deal was done and everybody was happy.”More from news02:37Purchasers snap up every residence in the $40 million Siarn Palm Beach North11 hours ago02:37International architect Desmond Brooks selling luxury beach villa1 day ago6 Parklane Terrace, Sovereign Islands.Mr Moyer said an interstate buyer purchased the property.“People come to the Sovereign Islands for the lifestyle,” he said.The three-level house has a media room, games room and covered alfresco entertainment area with an integrated barbecue, bar, fridge and television.There is also a pool, pontoon and triple garage. 6 Parklane Terrace, Sovereign Islands.last_img read more

Next step for NBA is hiring women in positions of power

first_imgIn this Feb. 6, 2016, file photo, San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon, left, talks to Spurs head coach Gregg Popovich, right, on the court during a timeout in the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Los Angeles Lakers in San Antonio.  (AP Photo/Darren Abate, File) MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich sees one simple way for both the NBA and women to mark real progress in the league.Hire more women in positions of power.“I think there just has to be more, more of the same,” said Popovich, who during the offseason promoted assistant coach Becky Hammon, moving her one step closer to a head coaching seat. “There are more Beckys out there, they just have to be noticed and given the opportunity by people who are wise enough and courageous enough to do it and not just sit in the old paradigm.”And not just on the bench, but on the business side of the NBA as well.The NBA routinely gets high marks for its diversity efforts and is widely viewed as a leader on social issues. Still, NBA Commissioner Adam Silver believes the league needs to be better, and he made his feelings known in a memo to teams in the wake of the Dallas Mavericks’ embarrassing scandal.Several NBA teams tout statistics about women in their workforce, but beyond a handful — including Lakers controlling owner Jeanie Buss and Pelicans owner Gayle Benson — the next step for the league seems to be more women in positions of power such as CEOs and COOs.Memphis guard Mike Conley said it’s important for basketball, business and society itself to have women in positions of authority.“We welcome it, and we do want to see more of that,” Conley said, “and I think that will help bridge that gray area and all the things that have been happening with the Mavs and situations like that and hopefully it will never occur” again.The NBA earned an A+ for racial hiring practices but a B for its gender hiring practices this summer from The Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sports . That puts the NBA “significantly above” other professional sports, even as the number of women hired at the team level dropped for a third straight year with the percentage of women in team vice presidents and professional staff dipping as well, according to the report’s author, Richard Lapchick.When the NBA began investigating a report of sexual harassment and improper workplace conduct involving the former team president, the Mavericks did not have one woman at the executive level. Owner Mark Cubanhired former AT&T senior executive Cynthia Marshall as CEO and president in February , promoted four women to executive roles and now has eight women among 18 leadership roles.A memo obtained by The Associated Press last month shows the NBA plans workshops in Atlanta and Los Angeles in mid-November on the diversity and inclusion efforts. The NBA also set up an anonymous tip line after the Mavs’ story broke.NBA teams surveyed by The Associated Press say they’ve already been holding seminars on workplace conduct and putting women in leadership roles.Irina Pavlova represented the Nets on the Board of Governors before leaving last year and was replaced by a woman as president of the company that runs the Nets, Barclays Center and Nassau Coliseum. The Toronto Raptors have Teresa Resch as vice president of basketball operations and player development, and Dr. Lisa Callahan is chief medical officer for both the Knicks and the WNBA’s Liberty.The Miami Heat recently hired Ruth Riley Hunter as its newest television and radio analyst, a move in motion before Silver talked about wanting more women in the NBA.Grizzlies general manager Chris Wallace has seen the number of women in the NBA jump dramatically since he joined the league in 1986 and believes its heading in the right direction. Chantal Hassard has been with the Grizzlies since the franchise was in Vancouver and is entering her third season as VP of team operations and player programs. Memphis also just brought back Nicki Gross as a basketball analyst after she was the D-League’s only woman assistant in 2015 with Iowa.“I think it adds a viewpoint, a skillset that is very beneficial for the teams,” Wallace said.Silver wants teams hiring more women, including jobs with power, so the NBA is going to help. The NBA plans an event at the All-Star break in Charlotte, North Carolina, in February to grow the “pipeline of female talent in basketball operations roles.”Lapchick said hiring more women has to be a combination of efforts by both the NBA and its teams.“Teams saw the results in Dallas with no women in leadership to stop/confront bad behavior, which I believe is not uncommon toward women in the workplace in and out of sport,” Lapchick told the AP. “Adam has the respect to push and I am impressed by the NBA’s actions after the decline in gender grade when the Report Card was published followed by the post investigation in Dallas.”Ethan Casson, CEO of the Minnesota Timberwolves and the WNBA’s Lynx, said it can’t be a quota approach — and believes there are qualified women in the candidate pools. About 40 percent of Minnesota’s full-time employees are women with 35 percent of department heads and above women. He noted how transparent the NBA and its teams have been on this issue.“It’s constantly challenging your organization’s thinking and creating what that environment is, and that’s what makes the diversity inclusion so important,” Casson said. “You’re a better organization when you’re built that way from the ground up.”___AP Basketball Writers Tim Reynolds and Brian Mahoney and AP Sports Writers Dave Campbell, Andrew Seligman, Janie McCauley, Anne M. Peterson, Schuyler Dixon, Pat Graham, Tom Withers, Howard Fendrich, Brett Martel, Kyle Hightower and AP freelance writers Raul Dominguez, Clay Bailey and Ian Harrison contributed to this report.___More AP NBA: https://apnews.com/tag/NBA and https://twitter.com/AP_Sportslast_img read more

Pre-’93 NFL pension benefits group receives $100K donation

first_imgIn this Sept. 27, 2014, file photo, Hall of Fame football player Jim Brown meets with other participants of the Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award at the Muhammad Ali Center in Louisville, Ky. (AP Photo/Timothy D. Easley, File) WASHINGTON (AP) — Two leading advocates for retired NFL players have teamed up in pushing for increased pension benefits for pre-1993 retirees.The Pro Football Retired Players Association, a nonprofit chaired by Hall of Famer Jim Brown, donated $100,000 to Fairness for Athletes in Retirement, a nonprofit advocating for pension parity in the upcoming negotiations over the league’s next collective bargaining agreement.The donation follows a pledge of NFL Players Association Executive Director DeMaurice Smith to prioritize retiree benefits in the next labor accord in 2021.Brown called pension disparity “the most pressing issue facing retirees,” and FAIR said it will use the money to continue raising awareness about the plight of some 4,000 pre-1993 retirees.“Despite paving the way for the NFL to become what it is today, players of Jim Brown’s era have been left behind with the lowest pension package among all other major U.S. sports leagues,” FAIR president Lisa Marie Riggins said. “These players have never had league health insurance and retirement income is often consumed by medical expenses. With everything they have contributed to the league and the game, they deserve the security of a pension they can survive on.”Addressing the disparity “would be a paradigm shift of historic proportions for a generation of beloved players,” Riggins said.The league and its union instituted “legacy benefits” in its last accord in 2011 that supplemented pre-93 retirees’ pensions by between $108 and $124 monthly per credited season.Their pensions continue to lag behind those of other sports, however. A 10-year NFL veteran who retired before 1993 receives between $24,000 and $43,560 a year before tax at age 55, according to FAIR.In contrast, FAIR said a Major League Baseball player who retired after 1980 following a 10-year career receives about $200,000 yearly at age 62 and a 10-year NBA veteran who retired after 1965 receives about $215,000 a year at age 62.___For more information: www.pensionparity.com and www.pfrpa.com___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/tag/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFLlast_img read more