Regional elections postponed after organizers catch COVID-19

first_img“Our capacity and preparedness have definitely been affected,” he said.On Monday, Home Minister Tito Karnavian quietly held a meeting with the KPU, election watchdog Bawaslu and House of Representatives lawmakers to discuss the fate of the elections, which were thrown into doubt since the COVID-19 outbreak began sweeping across the nation.They agreed to postpone regional elections and urged regional leaders to reallocate funds previously earmarked for election preparations to COVID-19 containment efforts, according to a signed letter summarizing the decisions that was circulated Monday.It remains unclear for how long the regional elections will be postponed, but the letter states that any continuation of the electoral process would have to be agreed upon by the KPU, the government and the House.KPU chief Arief Budiman had floated the possibility of postponing the polls either for three months or an entire year, noting a preference for the latter.“But even that has its consequences,” Arif told a virtual press conference on Sunday.The 2016 Regional Elections Law stipulates that regional elections must take place in September this year, so any delay would require a revision to the law.Some longtime observers see a revision to the law as unlikely because it might involve a long political process between the government and the House. This can, however, be worked around by having the President issue a government regulation in lieu of law (Perppu).Experts have previously called on President Joko “Jokowi” Widodo to support the idea of issuing a Perppu in order to ensure quality regional elections can take place.An expert staff member at the Office of the Presidential Chief of Staff, Sigit Pamungkas, said that the government was open to the idea of issuing a Perppu to reschedule the September polls but only under two conditions.First, a Perppu would become viable if the KPU no longer has enough time to prepare for the elections after May 29, the deadline of the state of emergency declared by the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) in response to the virus outbreak. Secondly, rescheduling is possible if the current situation gets worse.The KPU previously insisted on keeping the September schedule on the table, prior to the discovery that its members had contracted the disease. The option became unviable following the death of a KPU commissioner at the Minahasa branch in South Sulawesi who had already been put under surveillance (ODP).South Sulawesi is one of the nine provinces that are scheduled to hold gubernatorial elections this year. The other eight are Bengkulu, Jambi, West Sumatra, Riau Islands, Central Kalimantan, South Kalimantan, North Kalimantan and Central Sulawesi. All have confirmed COVID-19-positive cases.In addition to the nine gubernatorial elections, the September polls would have seen candidates jostle for mayorships in 37 cities nationwide. As of Monday, 22 of these cities have confirmed COVID-19 transmission, including Depok in West Java, Balikpapan in East Kalimantan, Medan in North Sumatra, Makassar in South Sulawesi, South Tangerang in Banten, Surakarta in Central Java and Surabaya in East Java.As many as 224 regencies are also heading for elections, with 32 already reporting infections. Kutai Kartanegara is among them, as well as Bandung in West Java and Merauke in Papua.As of Monday afternoon, Indonesia has recorded a total of 1,414 confirmed COVID-19 cases and 122 fatalities.Topics : Based on agency reports, the list of infected election organizers includes, among others, members of the South Solok KPU branch in West Sumatra and representatives in East Kalimantan’s Kutai Kartanegara and Bontang regencies.But KPU members in other regions are now also at risk of exposure to the virus, especially those who participated in a training event held by the agency’s central office in Jakarta on Feb. 8-12.“We found that our colleagues who contracted the virus are KPU members and information system operators who took part in a technical training course on the verification of voter data,” Hasyim said on Sunday.He said the KPU would need time not only to trace the spread of the disease to personnel all over the country but also to wait for infected members to fully recover so as to avoid transmission to even more people. Postponing this year’s regional elections was the most viable option to avoid COVID-19 from further spreading to rural areas, Indonesia’s elections authority has said, as reports emerged that election organizers have also caught the disease and stakeholders moved to delay the polls.The General Elections Commission (KPU) made the decision after revealing it was also fighting to contain the virus within its ranks, which poses a serious risk to the agency’s capacity to organize elections in 270 regions slated for September.KPU Commissioner Hasyim Asy’ari told The Jakarta Post that members of the institution both at the national and regional levels had been exposed to COVID-19, with some testing positive for the disease and others being treated as suspected patients or placed under surveillance.last_img read more

Arsenal board reveal transfer plan and send warning to Aubameyang and Mesut Ozil over contracts

first_imgAdvertisement Arsenal board reveal transfer plan and send warning to Aubameyang and Mesut Ozil over contracts Comment Venkatesham and head of football Sanllehi sat down for an in-depth chat (Picture: Arsenal Media)‘We need to continue to look at our wage bill. We’ve got, and it’s well known, a large wage bill – that’s a good thing. That demonstrates the financial power and the financial muscle of Arsenal, which is important for us to be successful,’ he told Arsenal’s official website.AdvertisementAdvertisementADVERTISEMENT‘But we need to make sure we are spending that money as efficiently as possible, and we are spending a lot of time focusing on that.‘Of course we need to be sensible and we need to be efficient in the transfer window. We need to sign excellent players, we need to make sure those players can make a real contribution.More: FootballRio Ferdinand urges Ole Gunnar Solskjaer to drop Manchester United starChelsea defender Fikayo Tomori reveals why he made U-turn over transfer deadline day moveMikel Arteta rates Thomas Partey’s chances of making his Arsenal debut vs Man City‘And if I look back to the last transfer window, with Bernd Leno, Matteo Guendouzi, Lucas Torreira, Papa Sokratis and others, we think we bring in players that can make a really big impact. And we believe that those players, and many more, can make a bigger impact next season.‘We need to be sure that when we are selling players we are maximising the funds that we can get when we sell players, because all of those funds just get reinvested back into the team.’Arsenal missed out on transfer fees for both Sanchez when he joined Manchester United over a year ago and Ramsey when he signed for Juventus as a free agent, with the Welshman moving to Turin once his contract has expired at the end of June. The Gunners have a clear vision for how they will navigate the transfer market (Picture: Getty)Arsenal chiefs Vinai Venkatesham and Raul Sanllehi have outlined the need for the club to be ‘efficient’ in the transfer market and say they will not allow a repeat of the Alexis Sanchez and Aaron Ramsey sagas.The north London club are believed to have a limited transfer budget available this summer, with Unai Emery to be handed a kitty of just £40million if he fails to qualify for the Champions League.Managing director Venkatesham has hinted that the club will need to be creative in the market and will rely on last summer’s signings continuing to improve, though any profit from player sales will be reinvested.center_img Ewan RobertsMonday 20 May 2019 5:55 pmShare this article via facebookShare this article via twitterShare this article via messengerShare this with Share this article via emailShare this article via flipboardCopy link4kShares Aubameyang only has two years left on his current contract with Arsenal (Picture: Getty)Venkatesham says the club must do more to avoid those situations in the future and has given a clear ultimatum to players with two years left on their deals – such as Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mesut Ozil – that they either renew of they will be sold.He continued: ‘We need to make sure we are really disciplined. A good example of that is senior players that aren’t towards the end of their careers, we need to make sure that those players, when they’ve got two years left on their contract, we’re making the difficult decisions.‘We’re either renewing those players’ contracts, or we’re selling those players. So we’re going to have to be brave with those decisions along the way, because we can’t be in a situation where we are allowing players to walk out the door for free unless they are coming towards the end of their career.’More: Arsenal FCArsenal flop Denis Suarez delivers verdict on Thomas Partey and Lucas Torreira movesThomas Partey debut? Ian Wright picks his Arsenal starting XI vs Manchester CityArsene Wenger explains why Mikel Arteta is ‘lucky’ to be managing Arsenal Advertisementlast_img read more

Euro-zone ministers to discuss benchmarking pension systems

first_imgEuro-zone finance ministers aim to agree a plan to benchmark member state pension systems when they meet next week.The Eurogroup, an informal body bringing together ministers of the euro area, will next meet on 20 March, and is due to discuss the sustainability of member states’ pension systems.“Ministers will look into the possibility of introducing benchmarking in this policy area, and will discuss the choice of indicators and the frequency of reporting,” according to a statement from the group.The goal is to agree “the modalities of a benchmarking exercise”, it added. The debate about benchmarking will be based on a recent analysis carried out by the European Commission, according to the statement.It would be the ministers’ third round of discussions on pension sustainability in the euro area. The first was in December 2015, when the group identified “putting pension systems on a sustainable path” as a policy priority, given an ageing population and other developments.In June last year the group adopted a set of common principles for strengthening the fiscal sustainability of pension systems and invited the Commission to come up with appropriate benchmarks, based on the common principles.The Eurogroup usually meets once a month, on the eve of a meeting of EU economics and finance ministers.Other topics due to be on the agenda of next week’s meeting include a review of macroeconomic reforms in Greece and euro area countries’ annual debt issuance plans.last_img read more

Hoosier babies get 3,000 ‘Red Hats’ this month

first_imgIndianapolis, In. — More than 3,000 babies born in Indiana in February will be decked out in reds hats courtesy of the American Heart Association’s “Little Hats, Big Hearts” program.American Heart Association staff will deliver the tiny hats to more than 30 hospitals across the state beginning this week. The hats were lovingly hand made by more than 200 volunteers.February is American Heart Month, and the week of Feb. 7-14 is Congenital Heart Defect Awareness Week. Heart disease remains the No. 1 cause of death in the United States and in Indiana, and congenital heart defects (CHDs) are the leading birth defect in newborns. Approximately 1 of every 110 babies is born with a CHD, and 25 percent of those require invasive surgery within the first year.The Little Hats, Big Hearts program raises awareness about both while offering new parents information about living a heart-healthy life.Participating hospitals include:Community Hospital East                                                              IndianapolisCommunity Hospital North                                                          IndianapolisCommunity Hospital South                                                          IndianapolisCommunity Hospital Anderson                                  AndersonCommunity Hospital                                                                       MunsterCommunity Howard Regional Health                       KokomoElkhart General Hospital                                                                ElkhartEskenazi Health                                                                 IndianapolisFranciscan Health Crown Point                                   Crown PointFranciscan Health Hammond                                                      HammondFranciscan Health Indianapolis                                   IndianapolisFranciscan Health Michigan City                                 Michigan CityFranciscan St. Elizabeth Health                                   LafayetteGood Samaritan Hospital                                                              VincennesGoshen Health System                                                  GoshenHendricks Regional Health                                                            DanvilleHighpoint Health                                                                              LawrenceburgIU Health Arnett Hospital                                                              LafayetteIU Health West                                                                  AvonMajor Hospital                                                                   ShelbyvilleMemorial Hospital of South Bend                                             South BendMethodist Hospitals                                                                        Merrillville / GaryParkview Health                                                                               Fort WayneParkview Huntington Hospital                                     HuntingtonParkview LaGrange Hospital                                                        LaGrangeParkview Noble Hospital                                                               KendallvilleParkview Whitley Hospital                                                            Columbia CityPorter Regional Hospital                                                                ChestertonSaint Joseph Health System                                                         MishawakaSt. Catherine Hospital                                                                     East ChicagoSt. Mary Medical Center                                                               HobartSt.Vincent Kokomo                                                                         KokomoUnion Hospital                                                                   Terre HauteWitham Hospital                                                                               LebanonThis is the fifth year the American Heart Association has delivered red hats for newborns in February. More than 16,000 babies have received the hats. Volunteers interested in donating materials or knitting or crocheting hats for next year, or hospitals that would like to participate in the program, should call the American Heart Association at (317) 732-4700.last_img read more

Suarez shines in Reds win

first_img Wales international Bale drilled in an early swerving free-kick which Brad Jones, back in the side because of Jose Reina’s calf injury, batted away unconvincingly but then had to cede centre-stage to Suarez. Philippe Coutinho combined well down left with Jose Enrique, starting the move with a cheeky backheel. The pair then exchanged passes before Enrique, holding off Walker, slid a perfectly-weighted pass for Suarez to run onto and surprise Lloris at his near post with the outside of his right foot. Bale – playing mainly through the middle – contributed, in some part, to the equaliser on the stroke of half-time. The ball was worked out to him and he curled a left-footed cross over the head of Jamie Carragher, on his 500th league appearance, for Vertonghen to get in front of Glen Johnson and head inside far post. Liverpool may have been aggrieved they did not get a penalty late in the half when Coutinho appeared to be pulled back by Walker as he tried to get on the end of a cross but they had conceded 10 minutes’ of pressure to the visitors. Bale played a part in Tottenham’s second just after the break when his free-kick was weakly headed down by Carragher to Vertonghen who fired home. Then a trademark driving run by Bale saw him pick out Gylfi Sigurdsson in acres of space at the far post but his shot was deflected onto a post by Johnson. Yet it was Tottenham’s nerves which faltered next. Walker attempted an inexplicable back-pass/crossfield ball from the right touchline which succeeded only in drawing Lloris out of his goal to clear. When he failed Downing nipped in to advance on goal and drill a shot through the legs of Vertonghen on the line. The pace of the game went up a notch and Daniel Sturridge headed into the side-netting and Bale nodded wide before another dreadful backpass, this time by Jermain Defoe, forced Benoit Assou-Ekotto to barge into Suarez. Gerrard, often Liverpool’s big man for the big occasion, stepped up to slot home his ninth of an increasingly profitable campaign. Luis Suarez edged the battle of the player of the year contenders after he scored and earned the match-winning penalty to eclipse Gareth Bale as Liverpool defeated Tottenham 3-2. The Premier League’s leading scorer drew first blood with his 29th of the season – and 22nd in the top flight – and, although his opposite number had a hand in both of Tottenham’s goals, the Uruguay international had the last laugh by winning the late spot-kick from which Steven Gerrard scored. Centre-back Jan Vertonghen had scored twice after Suarez had put the home side ahead only for calamitous misjudgements by Kyle Walker and goalkeeper Hugo Lloris to gift Stewart Downing the equaliser. center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

Sam Allardyce: Sunderland have only themselves to blame for league position

first_img Press Association The Black Cats gave their Barclays Premier League survival hopes a major boost on Saturday when they beat bottom-of-the-table Aston Villa 3-1 at the Stadium of Light. However, they remain four points shy of safety and Allardyce knows that the pressure will be incessant until they can force their way out of the relegation zone. Sam Allardyce admits Sunderland have only themselves to blame for their current plight. If Wearside was buoyant on Saturday evening, there was a growing acceptance in the West Midlands that Villa’s fate is growing increasingly bleak. However, manager Remi Garde is refusing to throw in the towel. He told the club’s official website, www.avfc.co.uk: “In life and football, you first have to believe. If you don’t, you have no chance to do it. “Let’s say it is more difficult – I am realistic as well. But in football, you can have a run of winning games.” Both Allardyce and Garde hope to be busy during the transfer window with the Sunderland boss revealing progress is being made, if slowly. Asked if there had been any movement, he said: “Movement? Slight movement in terms of there’s more progress made, but nothing to suggest we are going to sign anybody on the dotted line just yet. “But we are trying in many areas.” He said: “Yes, it’s massive, the pressure is constantly on you at this level and in this position, and you have to accept it because it’s our fault. “We are only under that pressure because of our frailties and what we must do is continue to try to improve all the time by doing what I have said – you have to try to go out in every game and make fewer mistakes than the opposition, and then hopefully you keep a very important clean sheet and at the other end, your goalscorers punish the opposition. “Whether you are playing better than the opposition or not doesn’t really matter. When you get the chance if you score it, it turns the game in your favour whether you deserved it or whether you didn’t.” Sunderland certainly did not deserve the 30th-minute lead they took when Villa skipper Micah Richards inadvertently deflected Patrick van Aanholt’s shot into his own net with the visitors enjoying much the better of the first half. But Allardyce’s men grew into the game and after Carles Gil had drawn the visitors level with a stunning 63rd-minute volley, 33-year-old Jermain Defoe, who had enjoyed little service before the break, made the most of that which came his way after it to restore his side’s lead with 18 minutes remaining and then cement victory at the death. Sunderland face a tough FA cup third round trip to Arsenal next week before heading for Swansea in another six-pointer, and Allardyce knows what his side does against the teams in the lower half of the table is likely ultimately to decide their fate. He said: “It’s not rocket science to know that if you are going to get out of trouble, it’s the teams around you you have got to take the points from more than the bigger sides because the bigger sides, it’s so much more difficult to do that. “If you get one of those or two of those in a season when you are in our position, then you are working a bit of a miracle. That’s your bonus points, then. As long as you have done it against the teams in and around you, then if you do it against the big boys it’s your bonus points.” last_img read more

Man arrested after fatally shooting suspected burglar and going back to sleep without calling police

first_imgAuthorities in Texas have arrested a man who fatally shot a suspected burglar and went back to sleep without contacting authorities.The incident was reported Thursday at a home on the 5400 block of Philip Avenue in Dallas.Officials say 72-year-old James Michael Meyer reported that he heard a noise in his yard around 5:00 am and went to check it out. When Meyer looked through his window, he says he noticed a man near his shed with a pickax.Meyer then retrieved his gun and went outside to confront the suspect. The resident chambered a round and yelled to the suspect to “stop what he doing and not come any closer or else he’d shoot.” Meyer says the suspect then took several steps towards him and that’s when Meyer fired a warning shot.The suspect then reportedly dropped the pickax and took off running into a nearby park.Meyer says he then fired in the direction of the park before walking back inside and going to back to bed.The resident says that at 7:00 am he then woke up for the morning and noticed what looked like a black bag laying on the ground at the park, however, upon further inspection, Meyer realized it was a body.According to the report, Meyer’s wife then contacted an attorney and that’s when Meyer’s called authorities to report the attempted burglary with a suspect in need of medical attention.When investigators arrived on the scene, they found an unidentified deceased male but stated that they did not find bullet casings.Meyer later told authorities that he cleaned up the casings and threw them in the trash.While Meyer is claiming his actions were in self defense prosecutors are reporting that once the suspect dropped the pickax and ran away, there was no longer any danger to Meyer.He has since been taken to the Dallas County Jail and was being held on a $150,000 bail.Several other sources have reported that he has since been released from jail but is still facing murder charges.last_img read more

Cricket News ICC Cricket World Cup 2019: Bangladesh pick new-comer Abu Jayed in squad

first_imgThe squad will be led by Mortaza and it is expected that Bangladesh’s most experienced captain might play in his last tournament before announcing his retirement in order to focus on his career in politics. Shakib will be the key as Bangladesh look to repeat their good performance from the 2015 World Cup. In the tournament that was held in Australia and New Zealand, Bangladesh defeated England in Adelaide and it helped them reach the quarterfinal for the first time in the history of the tournament.Before the World Cup, Bangladesh will be part of a tri-series that will feature Ireland and the West Indies and it will be played in Dublin. Mortaza’s side will begin the tournament by playing the West Indies on May 9 in Dublin. Bangladesh will begin their World Cup campaign on June 3 against South Africa at The Oval and they will be determined to start their campaign on a positive note.ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 squadMashrafe Mortaza (capt), Liton Das, Mohammad Mithun, Mushfiqur Rahim (wk), Mahmudullah, Shakib Al Hasan, Tamim Iqbal, Soumya Sarkar, Mohammad Saifuddin, Abu Jayed, Mustafizur Rahman, Rubel Hossain, Mehidy Hasan Miraz, Sabbir Rahman, Mosaddek Hossain highlights For all the Latest Sports News News, Cricket News News, Download News Nation Android and iOS Mobile Apps. New Delhi: Abu Jayed, who has played five Tests and three Twenty20 Internationals for Bangladesh, has been picked in the ODI squad for the upcoming ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 which will be held in England on May 30. Along with Jayed, Mosaddek Hossain, who last played in the Asia Cup in September 2018 is also back in the side which will be led by Mashrafe Mortaza. Shakib Al Hasan will be the vice-captain of the team and Bangladesh’s star all-rounder, playing for Sunrisers Hyderabad, has been called back from the 2019 Indian Premier League to attend a preparatory camp for the World Cup.Jayed has been in good form in the Dhaka Premier Division Cricket League. Playing for Prime Doleshwar Sporting Club, Jayed has taken 12 wickets in nine games at an average of 33.33 at an economy rate of 5.59. In addition to the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, the squad for the Ireland tri-series has also been announced with the addition of two players in Yasir Ali and Nayeem Hasan. Bangladesh entered the quarterfinal of the 2015 World Cup in Australia-New Zealand.Bangladesh will begin their 2019 World Cup campaign against South Africa.Mashrafe Mortaza could potentially play his last World Cup for Bangladesh.last_img read more

ITF Bans Cecchinato for 18 Months for Match-fixing

first_imgItaly’s Marco Cecchinato has been banned for 18 months and fined 40,000 euros (£33,500) for match-fixing, says the Italian tennis federation.The 23-year-old world number 143 was found guilty of altering the outcome of his match against Kamil Majchrzak at an ATP Challenger in Morocco in October. Riccardo Accardi and Antonio Campo have also been banned and fined for their roles in attempts to fix matches.Accardi was given a 12-month ban while Campo was suspended for four months.Cecchinato, who is able to appeal, was found guilty of “several other instances of sports corruption” and suspended until January 2018.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegramlast_img

Champions League action this week

first_imgGoalkeeper Joe Hart has trained with the squad having missed the last few games with a calf injury.Tonight it’s a battle of Spain’s top two as Barcelona host Atletico Madrid while the other tie sees Bayern Munich welcome Benfica.Kick off in both games is at 7.45 Meanwhile, Aston Villa won’t be taking any further action against striker Gabriel Agbonlahor – after finishing an internal investigation.He was made unavailable for selection after being pictured holding a shisha pipe in Dubai.Villa are bottom of the Premier League and without a permanent manager.last_img