March 25, 2020
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first_img…Govt also pays M to bankrupt US company for CCTV camerasAbena Moore, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of the Presidency (MoTP), was yesterday hauled over the proverbial coals when she appeared before the National Assembly’s Public Accounts Committee (PAC) to answer queries raised by the Auditor General’s Office.The resultant interrogation revealed that tens of millions of dollars had been spent by the MoTP in breach of procurement rules and in audaciously flagrant violation of the nation’s financial laws.A frazzled Moore was at pains to provide answers for the several breaches that were highlighted; and, before wrapping up her testimony, told the Committee that the expenditures for which she is unable to provide satisfactory answers were all overseen by embattled former Permanent Secretary Omar Shariff – who was fired as Permanent Secretary and arrested after the State Assets Recovery Unit (SARU) had alleged theft of billions of dollars at the MoTP following investigations.PM’s luxury rideActing Chairperson of the Public Accounts Committee, former Junior Finance Minister Bishop Juan Edghill, was forced to upbraid Moore during the interrogation by saying accounting officers and professional staffers at government ministries must not buckle to the pressure of policy makers “and politicians that cause us to bend the rules.”Moore has been grilled over the bizarre circumstances surrounding the purchase of a multi-million-dollar luxury vehicle for Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo. The Public Accounts Committee heard that not only was the vehicle delivered almost one year late, but the entire cost for the vehicle – $13M – had actually been paid up front by means of two cheques, using sums of money that had been allocated for the previous year’s expenditure.This explanation caused Edghill to declare: “Everything is wrong about this transaction, and it falls on the lap of the accounting officer (Permanent Secretary Moore)!” His position was that while the vehicle had been purchased for the Prime Minister, the rules of the Fiscal Management and Accountability Act (FMAA) had been flouted, and this should never have been allowed to happen.Permanent Secretary Moore indicated that the money had been allocated in 2015 to purchase the vehicle, and the cheques covering its full cost had been cut and paid to Beharry Automotive Sales Limited with expectation that the vehicle would be delivered in a timely manner; but this did not obtain, as the vehicle was not delivered until September of 2016.Among the excuses offered for the late delivery was a fire at the Toyota Factory in Japan, and the installation of a cooler and other accessories for the vehicle.One of the MoTP’s technical officers had attempted to gloss over the fact that it was an error to cut the two cheques up front and pay them simultaneously to the Beharry Automotive Sales Limited; but Bishop Edghill quickly objected to his attempts, and outlined to him the process that obtains and why his answer “did not make sense”.It was also revealed that the MoTP had not requested the Finance Secretary’s permission to have the money held over from one year to another.Under the line item “vehicles for the Prime Minister”, a total of three purchases, totalling $22 million, was made from Beharry Automotive Sales Limited; and all payments were made 100 per cent up front.According to Bishop Edghill, paying 100 per cent upfront for vehicles to be delivered months later is tantamount to giving an involuntary loan.Moon BlinkMoreover, it was found that in 2015, under the pretext of unavoidable, urgent and unforeseen circumstances, the MoTP had procured some $20 million in closed-circuit television (CCTV) cameras. To date, this equipment has not been delivered; and according to Permanent Secretary Moore, the US-based (California) company has since gone bankrupt.She told the Committee, “I engaged the Minister of State (Joseph Harmon) on this matter. He is speaking with the Minister of Legal Affairs (Basil Williams).” She added that the MoTP has been engaging other US-based stakeholders in the contract – Shawn Birkett and Shawn Nolan – to no avail.According to Moore, the MoTP has also been looking to engage the American Embassy, “to try to see what help we can get (in recovering the sum paid up front).”Police ActionThe Committee heard that the transaction had not been secured by a bond, and the vendor – now a bankrupt company – had in fact been paid in full upfront, as was the case with the vehicles for the Prime Minister.By this time, the Committee’s substantive chairman, Irfaan Ali, had returned to take charge of the proceedings, and had learnt that the MoTP is currently unable to recover overpayments it had made to a contractor for works undertaken at Castellani House.Moore said that when the contractor was hauled in, he related that he was not in a position to make repayments, since he has not been getting work. According to the Permanent Secretary, “I have written to him recently, (demanding he should) start paying or I (would) hand the matter over to the Guyana Police Force.”Other government agencies engaging the attention of the Public Accounts Committee at yesterday’s meeting included the Public Service Management, the Ministry of Business, and the Public Telecommunications Ministry.last_img read more

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first_imgChief Elections Officer (CEO) of the Guyana Elections Commission, Keith Lowenfield, told a news conference this morning that the Secretariat is yet to receive instructions from the Commission to commence its elections preparation. In addition, GECOM is claiming that it needs another 148 days before it is fully ready to host the constitutionally mandated General and Regional Elections.More details in the February 08, 2019 edition of the Guyana Times.last_img

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first_imgRe “Kiss 200 good jobs goodbye” (April 1): Why does your Sunday headline read “Kiss 200 good jobs goodbye”? Why not: “Councilman stands up for his constituents”? Aren’t parks as important as jobs? – Alan Pollack Woodland Hills Reyes is right Re “Kiss 200 good jobs goodbye” (April 1): I recall reading Daily News articles that told us that Los Angeles is one of the most park-deficient cities in the country. Yet you took Councilman Ed Reyes to task over his decision to support this property being used as a park rather than a rail-car refurbishing facility that would provide 200 jobs for “several years.” The melodramatic headline (“Kiss 200 good jobs goodbye”) and the pro-business story fail to even mention the other side of this story. I applaud Reyes for doing what his constituents want and what is good for Los Angeles. – Michael McNamara Sylmar Not the community Re “Kiss 200 good jobs goodbye” (April 1): It is not the community that wants another park at Taylor Yard (there already is one nearly completed there); it is Ed Reyes. The whole grandiose L.A. River revitalization is what Ed Reyes wants – the taxpayers be damned. So here’s an idea, why don’t we kiss Ed Reyes goodbye? – Tony Taylor North Hollywood A crime is a crime Re “Gangs focus now on immigrants” (April 1): The Daily News quoted Sheriff Lee Baca as follows: “It’s important to recognize there’s a difference between an illegal immigrant and an immigrant who commits a crime. We (he should speak for himself; who’s his “we”?) believe an illegal immigrant who is a gang member should be deported.” Doesn’t Baca know there is no difference between an illegal immigrant gang member and someone who is not a gang member but is an illegal immigrant? They both have broken the law and both should be deported. By Sheriff Baca’s statement, it appears to me that, and in my opinion, the sheriff who is supposed to enforce the law is in favor of illegal immigration. – Mort Sherman Woodland Hills Not doing its job? Re “Gangs focus now on immigrants” (April 1): A 40 percent increase in gang violence this year in the Valley? Finally, the feds and the Sheriff’s Department are getting it. The more illegal immigrants, the more crime in Los Angeles. Shame on them for waiting this long, knowing that many return to cause more crime. And please stop blaming society for not “doing its job.” Give up this crazy sanctuary policy. It is now destroying our quality of life here in L.A. We have no moral duty other than to deliver illegal immigrants back to their home country. – David McCann Agoura Hills Something stinks City Council President Eric Garcetti is actively trying to destroy all future business at the Los Angeles International Airport Hilton. Councilman Ed Reyes is blocking 200 high-paying light-industrial jobs. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa continues to welcome any illegal immigrant who promises to make a mockery of our laws. The Los Angeles school board refuses to grant charter-school rights to an organization with a great track record, while renewing a charter for what has been one of the lowest-scoring schools in California. What’s wrong with this picture? – Michael Guetzow Woodland Hills He’s back Re “Alarcón back in city’s 7th District seat” (March 31): Richard Alarcón’s back in the city? When asked what it’s like to be back at the City Council, his answer was it’s almost like he never left. That’s probably true. Not much has been done. The only difference I can think of is he is going to make a lot more money than if he had stayed in the state Assembly. I hope the voters wake up before the next election in 2009. I think if a politician runs for an office that calls for a four-year term, then he should serve four years. Then maybe we wouldn’t need costly special elections. – Frank Klein Sunland Tie him to a chair Re “Fire blackens 150 hilly acres; teens arrested” (March 31): Here we have a news conference called to update us on the Hollywood Hills fire by the battalion chief in charge, and here comes Antonio, flashing teeth and siren, to inform us on something he has just been barely briefed on. He not only will not give up the microphone but starts interpreting in Spanish. Is that really necessary?? Will someone please tie Antonio Villaraigosa to a chair at City Hall. To think I thought traveling Sam Yorty was bad. – Ken Thatcher Sr. Van Nuys Poor decisions Re “Paid too much” (March 29): Circuit City lays off the salespeople because they are making too much money and the company needs to reduce costs. Instead of getting rid of the six top executives who made $33.5 million and whose poor decisions helped in running the company into the ground, Circuit City gets rid of the top salespeople who were probably keeping the company afloat. I suspect these six management types will be expecting big bonuses for doing such a great job. They will also hire new people who do not need experience. I will now get a salesperson who has no idea of what he or she is selling. Terrific. – Richard Martin Burbank Moving traffic So Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky is the first official to recognize the obvious: that the conversion of large, nearby existing streets into one-way thoroughfares will move much more traffic and eliminate many left-turn crashes. As reported, this will be a low-cost, relatively fast change. On streets like our Victory Boulevard, Burbank Boulevard, Sherman Way, etc., we also gain an instant additional lane – for free. Now if the officials really get smart: Build overcrosses at the major intersections for the center two or three lanes, and things will really move around here. Also, change it so during rush hours the smaller intersecting street signals stay green for the large street, to keep traffic moving. Motorists would only be able to turn right at those times, but these are small prices to pay for moving traffic. – Dave Petterson Sherman Oaks Alberto Gonzales Alberto Gonzales is being scrutinized for lying to Congress. Frankly I don’t understand what the big deal is. Here is a man who wrote memos authorizing torture at Guantanamo Bay and in Abu Ghraib. A man who has helped turn America the beautiful into America the neo-Nazi internment center, from Guantanamo to Abu Ghraib to secret prisons around the world and in our border states. A man who does nothing while Halliburton fleeces Americans of their hard-earned tax dollars. A man who has stated that he doesn’t believe the American Constitution supports habeas corpus. We need to hold hearings to investigate whether this man is a pathological war criminal instead. – Charlie Wilken Northridge Without oversight Re “Serve at pleasure” (Your Opinions, April 2): Thank you, Dianne Newton, for clearing up a couple of misperceptions. I thought that the president served at our pleasure, and I was also under the impression that the GOP administration has created or contributed to some of the serious problems that our country faces (war, deficit, job losses even with record profits for corporations, etc.). For six years, this administration has operated without fear of oversight and has behaved like an immoral kid turned loose in a candy store of executive privilege. – Jennifer Rabuchin Burbank160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

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first_imgIt makes sense to the Tejon Ranch Co. and Rockefeller Group Development Corp. They’ve partnered up and started development of a 606,000-square-foot warehouse at the Tejon Industrial Complex. This is a 1,450-acre master-planned commercial development that’s going to be the centerpiece of California’s central trade corridor. This is just a small part of Tejon’s holdings. The company owns 270,000 acres, most of it currently used for agribusiness with some planned for residential use. The commercial part is gaining market muscle, though, with 2.5 million square feet of warehouse space already there. Swedish giant IKEA’s western regional warehouse is going to be the next-door neighbor, and Oneida Ltd’s West Coast distribution facility is on site. Now the partners are in the process of getting the complex recognized as an expansion of the Port of Los Angeles Foreign Trade Zone 202. “The Rockefeller Group is an organization with a worldwide reputation for quality commercial development, with a demonstrated depth of expertise in the foreign trade zone arena,” said Robert A. Stine, president and chief executive officer of Tejon Ranch Co. Here’s why that’s important. Manufacturers and distributors can defer duty payments on imported items or raw materials that are stored in warehouses in these zones until they move out into the commercial distribution chain. Companies can also get authorization from the U.S. Customs Department to move goods right from the port to the zone, thus bypassing time-consuming bottlenecks. Paperwork is pared down, too. Companies only have to file one customs entry per week versus one per day. The result is reduced fees, lower inventory levels and cost savings. The Inland Empire has seen a boom in this kind of construction to help with the movement of goods from the ports to destinations in the east. This development north of the Santa Clarita Valley provides a link to northern destinations, including the Port of Oakland and Canada. The Rockefeller Group believes the parts being put in place add up to a strategic location. “Our studies of imported goods … moving into the U.S. markets through the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach indicate that TIC is uniquely positioned to support the flow of such materials as they move into the marketplace,” said Tom McCormick, Rockefeller’s senior vice president of development. With Oakland just up the I-5, all of the state’s major ports are within reach. Sending freight from the ports to outpost holding centers could make crowded freeway conditions worse. That could be reduced by doing most of the freight-hauling at night. Eduardo Martinez, an economist at the Los Angeles County Economic Development Corp., said that rail lines are nearing capacity. And there is no letup in the amount of stuff heading our way. “We’re noticing that the flow of trade from Asia into the West Coast is not showing any kind of slowdown. There is a big demand in the U.S. for imported goods, no matter what the politicians say,” Martinez said. Lake greg.wilcox@dailynews.com (818) 713-3743160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Tejon Ranch is a long way from the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles. Even Port Hueneme. It’s 60 miles north along Interstate 5 from Los Angeles and 30 miles the other way from Bakersfield. The Port of Oakland? Another 400 miles up the road. The closest body of water is Castaic , where personal water craft and bass abound. This puts Tejon Ranch smack in the middle of a foreign trade zone. last_img read more

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first_img1 Tom Cleverley in action for Aston Villa Manchester United midfielder Tom Cleverley will join Everton this summer.The 25-year-old, who spent the season on loan at Aston Villa, has agreed a five-year deal with the Toffees.It’s understood Cleverley turned down offers from the Villans and Southampton, along with a host of clubs from across Europe.The midfielder’s contract expires this summer at Old Trafford and will link up with his new teammates for pre-season.last_img

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first_imgBROADCASTING: Digital revolution will leave your screen blank if you’re still using antennae in 2009. By Sue Doyle STAFF WRITER One in five Americans who still fiddles with rabbit ears to get better TV picture quality will be blown away by the digital revolution – and most of them don’t even know it yet. The congressional mandate replaces analog, a technology used for TV since its start in the 1930s that transmits signals by airwaves. The change to digital will improve picture and sound quality from analog transmissions and allows the transfer of more data to consumers. It also frees up precious airwave spectrum for the government to create a national public safety frequency. The remaining spectrum will be sold at public auction, with wireless commercial giants expected to bid billions to get a share of it. The options available to analog TV owners are the following: 1. Upgrade to a digital TV set – from $150. 2. Subscribe to cable or satellite service – about $600 a year. 3. Buy a digital converter box – about $50 to $75. To ease the transition for consumers, the federal government has set aside $990 million to offer two $40 coupons to households to help pay for converter boxes, also called tuners. The voucher program begins in January and will be administered through the U.S. Department of Commerce National Telecommunications and Information Administration. Also, all TV sets sold in the U.S. since March have had to contain digital tuner receivers. And as of May, all older TVs still on the market are supposed to have labels showing they have analog tuners and will require converter boxes. Using a traditional old TV inside his Canoga Park home, Luis Diaz was unaware it will fade to black in 2009. He said he would probably buy a converter for it. “I don’t have time to watch TV, so it’s not too important to me,” he said. “But buying the converter feels like a waste of time.” About 21 million U.S. households – 19 percent of the country – do not subscribe to cable or satellite services, according to a Government Accountability Office survey. “Many homes may lose complete access to television in the transition. … We cannot allow this to happen – people need television access to get news in an emergency scenario,” said California Congressman Joe Baca. “We must have proper outreach to ensure our senior citizens, disabled individuals and lower income families are aware of the changes they need to make.” While the remaining 80 million or so homes do have cable or satellite service, they might not have it hooked up on all their TVs and will have to decide what to do if they want reception on them, said Mark Cooper, Consumer Federation of America research director. Although he has digital TVs at home, Marty Fadaei, 45, of Calabasas said it’s not fair that the federal government is forcing Americans to accept the digital transition or be left in the dark. Even with the coupons, it’s not a fair way to run the country, he said. “That’s terrible. They will control it. It’s not the right way to do things,” he said. “This is a democracy, and you are telling people what they have to buy.” As the deadline for analog draws near, it’s likely that lower-income, non-English-speaking and senior residents won’t be aware of the change, Cooper said. In fact, it’s estimated that about 16 million households will lose all TV reception when analog signals are cut off, according to a report from the Consumer Federation of America and Consumers Union. Meanwhile, Cooper warns that consumers will be bombarded with ads from businesses preying on their confusion about digital TVs, cable services and converter boxes. Already, some cable TV ads are feeding into this by saying cable customers don’t have to worry about the transition, giving the impression that people should switch to cable, Cooper said. sue.doyle@dailynews.com Staff writer Lisa Friedman contributed to this report.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 MOREGame Center: Chargers at Kansas City Chiefs, Sunday, 10 a.m.While still more than a year off, the national switch to digital from analog transmissions is the biggest change in TV transmission standards since the birth of color broadcasting in 1953. Most Americans won’t even notice when the analog signal is cut on Feb. 17, 2009, because they already have digital sets or cable or satellite service. But converter boxes for analog sets will go on sale soon, along with a marketing blitz from cable and satellite companies and TV makers, all hoping to capitalize on consumer confusion. “This is going to be the most amazing blindside in American history,” said Tracy Westen, CEO of the Center for Governmental Studies, a Los Angeles-based nonpartisan research organization. “It’s like a tsunami that’s coming in 2009, and we know it’s coming, but nobody is paying attention.” In fact, nearly two-thirds of Americans have no idea about the upcoming change, according to a survey for the Association of Public Television Stations. last_img read more

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first_imgA young man fled from a Garda checkpoint and then abandoned his car and three passengers after crashing the car.Tony Duggan took his father’s car without permission before going out on a night on the town with friends in Dunfanaghy on April 23rd last year. On the way home, he met a Garda checkpoint which he turned back from before crashing into an oncoming at 2.18am.Duggan, aged 20, then fled with his co-driver through fields leaving three young women in the car.He was eventually apprehended by Gardai where he admitted driving the car.Duggan, from Meenacladdy, Meenlaragh, Gortahork, appeared at Falcarragh District Court charged with a number of offences including drunk driving.Garda Inspector David Kelly told the court that Duggan initially denied driving the car but then admitted being behind the wheel.Solicitor Patsy Gallagher said his client had no previous convictions and ha learned a solitary lesson.He said he has not been behind the wheel of any vehicle since the incident and will not be in the future.Judge Paul Kelly told Duggan “You are lucky to be alive and lucky nobody in your car was seriously injured.”He adjourned the case until June 20th to allow for a probation report.Man fled Garda checkpoint and then abandoned passengers after crashing was last modified: April 18th, 2018 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:courtcrashDunfanaghyGardaigortahorkTony Dugganlast_img read more

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first_imgLiverpool are tracking Napoli star Lorenzo Insigne, according to Rai Sport.The left-sided forward has made a fine start to this season and he already has seven goals to his name, continuing his form under new boss Carlo Ancelotti. silverware Which teams do the best on Boxing Day in the Premier League era? Latest Football News Forbes list reveals how much Mayweather, Ronaldo and Messi earned this decade Oxlade-Chamberlain suffers another setback as Klopp confirms serious injury BEST OF huge blow Lorenzo Insigne celebrates scoring the winner against Liverpool in the Champions League. RANKED Where Ancelotti ranks with every Premier League boss for trophies won ADVICE One of those came against Liverpool in the Champions League as the 27-year-old scored the only goal in a 1-0 win for Napoli.The Reds were seemingly impressed by Insigne that night as they are keeping tabs on him.Liverpool have begun scouting the Italy international ahead of a potential move next summer.However, Napoli currently have no plans to sell Insigne – who they view as a pivotal part of their plans going forward. MONEY 1 Ronaldo warned Lukaku how hard scoring goals in Serie A would be before Inter move Son ban confirmed as Tottenham fail with appeal to overturn red card REVEALED Top nine Premier League free transfers of the decade Every time Ally McCoist lost it on air in 2019, including funny XI reactions REVEALED REPLY no dice England’s most successful clubs of the past decade, according to trophies won Berahino hits back at b******t Johnson criticism – ‘I was in a dark place at Stoke’last_img read more

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first_imgA man headbutted a supermarket manager after he was asked to move his car from outside the store.Owen McDonagh appeared at Letterkenny District Court in Co Donegal charge with viciously assaulting ALDI supermarket manager Sean Cafferkey. Mr Cafferkey had asked McDonagh to move his car from outside his store on Neil T Blaney Road in Letterkenny because it was inconveniencing his customers.However, when he approached McDonagh, the accused responded by lunging at him with his head and breaking his nose.McDonagh, aged 20, of the Big Isle, Manorcunningham admitted the attack which happened on May 24th last year.His solicitor, Mr Frank Dorrian said there had been an argument about the positioning of the car before the attack took place.The court heard that the defendant had six previous convictions including incidents of dangerous driving, theft, and public order offences.Judge Paul Kelly adjourned the case to May 14th to await a Probation Report on the defendant.Man head-butted ALDI manager when asked to move car was last modified: March 21st, 2018 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:ALDIcourtdonegalhead-buttManagerOwen McDonaghParkinglast_img read more

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first_imgDr. Scott went beyond discussing scientific matters to advocating scientific materialism, calling creationism an ‘ideology’.At a recent conference, Dr. Eugenie Scott, as the plenary speaker at the West Coast Undergraduate Research Conference in Santa Clara April 22, stated that the vast majority of the scientific community accepted the evolutionary model without any acceptance of a supernatural being. She said that the general public, however, was not unanimously accepting the evolutionary model.The consensus of the scientific community was presented as the most solid measure of truth. Her appeal was for any in the audience to leave their ideology of creation in light of the overwhelming evidence to the contrary.Dr. Scott herself stated that the majority of the people in this country do not accept evolution to the exclusion of a Creator.There was no awareness that creation was more than an ideology. By labeling creation as an ideology, creation was robbed of its supernatural source and lowered to the level of an opinion losing its strength and purpose of honoring Christ as Creator and Savior. The word ideology was presented as a catchword to undermine creation, bringing it down to the same level of evolution.Dr. Scott proceeded to identify creation as just part of the conservative political platform. If creation is lowered to the level of a political ideology, it can be easily compromised and lost. The culmination of the talk was to state that the Science March was to push this agenda.There is a much broader purpose to the Science Marches than to support federal funding for science. Dr. Scott herself stated that the majority of the people in this country do not accept evolution to the exclusion of a Creator. She appealed to those in attendance to be spokespersons for the evolutionary paradigm.The conference was an undergraduate research conference. Some of the students who were supposed to be presenting their research posters abandoned their posters and went to San Francisco for the Science March.Dr. Dennis Englin is professor of biology at The Master’s UniversityIt is imperative that we train students to do good research in the sciences so that Dr. Scott’s position does not represent the majority of quality scientists.(Visited 403 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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