The company employed by the care watchdog to find

first_imgThe company employed by the care watchdog to find service-users to help inspect residential homes and hospitals is failing to make the most basic background checks on its recruits, undercover journalists have discovered.The two reporters had been told of concerns about sloppy recruitment methods used by Remploy, the former government-run company now mostly owned by the discredited US outsourcing giant Maximus.To investigate those concerns, they applied to Remploy to become Experts by Experience (ExE), disabled people and others who have previously used care or health services and are paid to accompany Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspectors on their inspections of hospitals, health centres, nursing homes, day centres and homecare providers.In 2015, Remploy won three of four regional contracts to run the programme, covering the south and north of England, and London. CQC has recently begun the process of retendering the four contracts for another three years.But the two journalists were astonished at how easy it was to secure a position as a Remploy ExE, and neither of them was asked to provide contact details for previous employers or personal contacts who could vouch for them.Although Remploy carried out checks on their criminal records through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS), no other checks were conducted into their backgrounds, and there were no face-to-face interviews.Both say they were accepted onto the programme after a 10-minute phone conversation.They believe Remploy’s casual approach to safety exposes service-users in the care settings inspected by CQC to potential harm, and risks undermining a valuable programme that has previously been praised for giving disabled people and others with lived experience of care a vital role in regulating and inspecting service-providers.One of the journalists told Disability News Service (DNS): “Other than a DBS check, no one has checked that I have had any personal experience in mental health services.”The other said: “It’s pretty shocking. They are taking people on board without checking whether they are in any way appropriate for the job.”But the failure to even ask for references – they both used their real names in their applications – was not their only concern.Both attended one-day training sessions, only to be appalled by the quality of what was provided.The freelance trainer who ran one of the sessions admitted he had never set foot in a care home and had no experience of the industry, and he was unable to answer simple questions about the way the scheme operated.One of the journalists said: “Overall the training was unclear, uninformative and has not left me confident to take part in an ExE inspection.“The training session was confusing, scripted and many questions asked were left unanswered.“I believe I could have read through the handout and slide shows and Googled the ExE role in my own time and would have been equally as ill-prepared for the role.”She added: “I do not regard myself as an expert, nor has the training given me the confidence to call myself an ‘expert’.”The other undercover journalist said: “The guy training us admitted that he had never been an Expert by Experience, and he had no clinical knowledge.“The training was based on a PowerPoint presentation and a pamphlet. It was utterly shocking.”Both turned down the opportunity of working for Remploy after attending the training sessions.In contrast to Remploy, the charity Choice Support, which heads the consortium that runs the Experts by Experience programme in the central region of England, carries out face-to-face interviews for those shortlisted for ExE roles, and obtains references for those successful at interview, completing DBS checks before a role is offered formally.Choice Support’s training package is carried out by trainers – including key members of the consortium, such as its national lead, Kim Arnold – who have “detailed knowledge of the industry as well as personal experience of using the services”.Claire Bolderson, a former ExE, now campaigns for improvements to the way Remploy runs the programme and to the pay ExEs receive.She has exchanged emails with CQC’s head of engagement, Chris Day, who admitted that Remploy did not ask for references for its new recruits.In an email seen by DNS, Day told Bolderson: “Remploy has assured CQC that it carries out robust screening of potential experts prior to their deployment on inspections, where they are asked to provide a detailed overview of their personal or family caring responsibilities, experience of team working and report writing experience.“As part of the screening process Remploy carries out DBS checks on all potential experts, and risk assessments where appropriate, as a result of these. “Remploy does not take up personal or professional references as part of its contractual obligations for recruitment of ExE.”Bolderson replied: “I am, to be quite blunt, stunned by your acceptance of Remploy’s failure to ask for personal or professional references when recruiting new Experts.“The ‘robust screening’ of which you have been assured consists of asking potential recruits, in a telephone conversation, about their experience largely as users of regulated services.“There is no process for establishing whether that person is telling the truth.“There is no way of verifying whether they have any of the experience they claim.“In short, Remploy simply accepts the potential recruit’s word for it.“That is hardly ‘robust screening’.“A DBS check is of course an important legal requirement. But it tells Remploy only whether a person has ever been caught and successfully prosecuted, not that they have relevant experience and are caring, responsible and capable individuals.”In a statement, a CQC spokesman repeated the three paragraphs above from Chris Day’s email.He added: “Remploy has redesigned its face-to-face and on-line training based on feedback from both CQC and ExE.“They continually evaluate and review their training and its quality. Recent independent survey results showed an improvement in the satisfaction rates of ExE taking part in training from 65 per cent in September 2016 to 82 per cent in January 2017.“Remploy will continue to work with CQC to update and improve the quality of training and is in the process of implementing a Learner Management System with access to a broader range of training for its Experts by Experience.”A Remploy spokesman said: “We are confident that our recruitment and training process ensures that individuals are well prepared for their roles as Experts by Experience (ExEs).”He said this was backed up by the most recent survey of ExEs, carried out in August, which found 92 per cent rated their first contact with the programme as good or satisfactory; 85 per cent said the recruitment process was good or satisfactory; and 83 per cent found the effectiveness of their training to be good or satisfactory.And he said that 88 per cent stated that “the effectiveness of the communication and information about the roles of the Expert and Inspector was good or satisfactory [in] preparing them for an Inspection”.He said: “These figures have increased each year that we have delivered the programme, reflecting the continuous improvement Remploy is committed to putting in place.“We have lengthy conversations with all potential ExEs to gauge their experience of, and engagement with, health and care services prior to providing training.“All potential Experts by Experience also undergo required criminal background checks.”He refused to comment on why Remploy did not request or take up references.Bolderson and other current and former ExEs have repeatedly raised concerns about the quality of the service provided by Remploy.Earlier this year, DNS reported how disabled people working as ExEs for Remploy were refused support workers, while one was bullied into resigning.Internal reports secured by DNS showed how CQC was forced to write “formally” to Remploy three times over concerns about the way it was running the ExE programme, while a CQC report in May 2016 found there had been “multiple issues with Remploy’s performance to date”.When CQC was asked about the concerns earlier this year, it said there had been a significant improvement in Remploy’s performance since 2016, but these latest revelations cast doubt on that claim.There are also continuing concerns over Remploy’s decision to pay its ExEs just over £9 an hour in basic pay (£10 in London), compared with rates of £15 an hour for those employed by the Choice Support consortium.Remploy was heavily criticised for slashing the pay of ExEs when it took over the contract.The latest criticisms of Remploy are also likely to alarm disabled people in Wales, where the company has been awarded a contract by the Department for Work and Pensions to provide employment support services under its new Health and Work programme.Bolderson told DNS: “It’s increasingly obvious that Remploy are incredibly good at pulling the wool over the CQC’s eyes, which raises some serious questions about the CQC as an effective regulator.”last_img read more

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THE lads awoke up a bit sore and delighted to have

first_imgTHE lads awoke up a bit sore and delighted to have gone four games undefeated which as you will agree is a fantastic achievement, writes Mike Rush.As a special treat the lads and staff got the opportunity to undertake white water rafting once again with the surplus money and once again to a man we all enjoyed the experience.I must however admit the guides on the course need to understand rafting as we spent more time out of the boat than in it.Following a shopping trip round the rocks while I looked for the good lady wife (Kirsty), the kids Lizzy and Alanah and the rest of the extended family… the famous UGG boots… the gang headed off to undertake the Bridge Climb.The climb is always the highlight of the trip and again all concerned loved the experience and some even went to describe it as the best thing they had ever done.A special mention needs to go Nathan Stupski and Matt Wood who overcame their fear of heights to undertake the activity.Just to go to show the parents are as good as the kids for common sense here’s one from Alex Clare’s mum (Kim Clare):Derek Traynor asked: “Did you enjoy the whale watching?” Kim replies: “It wasn’t very good,” Derek then asked: “Where did you go to watch them?” (meaning off Manly or Bondi etc) Kim replies: “The Ocean”I want to take this opportunity to thanks all the players for their effort, attitude and commitment to the trip and congratulate them all on unbeaten trip.I would also like to thank the volunteers who give up their time to make this trip happen and their hard work in raising £100,000.Many thanks, Derek, Paul, Leo, Killer, Mully, Eric F, Eric C, Tommy, Dec H, Neil, and the Physio Andy, also a thanks to those at home who have also helped along the way, Ian Talbot, Gordon Pennington (Saints Foundation), Glynn Walsh, Ross Mitchell, Mick Oxley, Ian Lomax, Geoff Cropper and all the sponsors who have helped over the past two years.I hope you have enjoyed the small notes back from Aussie and we look forward to catching up with all are loved ones on our return.Over and Out… Awards: James Tiley, Coaches Player of Tour.Adam Swift – Best BackPlayers Player – Dom SpeakmanGreg Richards – Best Forward.last_img read more

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SAINTS coach Mike Rush was lost for words after se

first_imgSAINTS coach Mike Rush was lost for words after seeing his side narrowly beat Widnes Vikings 40-38 in the fourth round of the Carnegie Challenge Cup.His side, who at one point lead 40-16 in the game, were caught napping in the final twenty minutes and it was only a miss kick from Patrick Ah Van in the last few minutes that separated the two teams.“In the last few minutes we were poor,” admitted the Acting Head Coach. “Going down to twelve men is the obvious answer (for the Widnes tries) I think we panicked a little bit so we’ve got to look at ourselves a little bit there. But having said that our kicking game went a little bit awash, maybe a few people tried to solve things amongst themselves rather than as a collective.”Despite the victory, Rush was not happy with the overall performance of his team: “We’ve got to get better than that, that’s not good enough.”His side were cruising late in the second half, but Widnes scoring 24 unanswered points meant a nervous ending for all involved.“24 points in front nobody should catch you because lets be fair if he (Ah Van) kicks the goal we go into golden point and they very nearly did catch us. Its’ a feeling of disappointment in the dressing room rather than relief to be honest “Rush did pay tribute to debutant Adam Swift who played despite the loss of his Grandfather, Harold Swift MBE, just hours before kick off: “Harold was not only a massive part of Adam’s life but he was a massive part of local rugby league in St Helens. He was chairman of Blackbrook, I played at Blackbrook for nearly 12 years and I’ve known Harold for 28 years, he was an absolute gentleman. It was a massive and a brave decision by Adam.“I wasn’t going to get into his mind to see how he was feeling, I spoke to both him and his father and both were insistent that he was playing and I thought the kid did fantastic today. He’s got super feet, a real athlete, if he keeps his feet on the floor and works hard then like a lot of young players at this club they’ll get their chance and he can go as far as he wants to go.”last_img read more

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The best defensive side in the competition will ta

first_imgThe best defensive side in the competition will take on the free scoring Tigers in a mouth-watering clash.For Justin Holbrook the game is just reward for the hard work and consistency of his side, especially over recent weeks.“When I came on board I thought if we could pull it all together and keep building then the group was as good as anyone,” he said. “The players needed some belief. They have found that and now have as good as chance as any going into the semi-finals.“It will be a tough game on Thursday and our defence will be tested. No one asks more questions than Cas and we have to be on our game the whole time.“If we slacken off for one play they will get us. We are the best defensive side in the comp; we have worked hard on that but we have to show it on Thursday.”Saints have beaten the Tigers twice this season and will go into the match as healthy as they have been all season.“We will go with the same 19,” Holbrook added. “As for the 17, I’m not sure yet. I’m aware I have made some changes over the last few weeks but I have always picked the best 17 to go out to try beat who we are playing.“If that means we make another couple of changes then so be it. Whoever is picked I’m sure they will do a good job and go out there to win.”One player heading into the game in form is Mark Percival – he is Saints’ top try and point’s scorer and was named in the Dream Team this week.“Percy can do things on the field that others can’t. As a fan he has the qualities you want to see. He still has a lot to improve on, of course, but he has the sort of things you want to see on the field. Congratulations to him.”Tickets for the clash remain on sale from the Ticket Office at the Totally Wicked Stadium, by calling 01744 455 052 or online here.last_img read more

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Last blast of summer Temperatures surpass records in Cape Fear

first_imgCFCC was recording a temperatures of 97 degrees in downtown Wilmington on Sept. 28, 2017 (Photo: Helen Holt/WWAY) WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — Fall only officially started less than a week ago so it’s no surprise that it still feels more like summer out.High temperatures soared into the low to mid 90s this afternoon across southeastern North Carolina Thursday surpassing the record high for Wilmington.3 p.m. weather conditions recorded from the WWAY weather station in Wilmington.- Advertisement – Heat indices, actual temperature combined with relative humidity, were close to 100 degrees in many spots.The average high for September 28 is 80 degrees. The old record was 91 degrees set back in 1998.As of 3 p.m. the high temperatures in Wilmington was 94 degrees.Related Article: Drone video captures awe-inspiring view of fall colorsA cold front will arrive late Thursday dropping temperatures to more seasonable levels for the start of October.By the end of October, average high temperatures are in the low 70s with normal overnight lows near 50.Click here for your StormTrack3 forecast.last_img read more

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NHSO Man robs friends of Jim Beam calls grandma to pick him

first_img Sheriff’s Office Spokesman Lt. Jerry Brewer says Dunn took out a knife and demanded their bottle of Jim Beam and their cash. Brewer says the couple didn’t have cash on them, so Dunn took the alcohol and ran out of the truck.Dunn then allegedly ran up to the Porters Neck Country Store gas station and called his grandma to come pick him up.A deputy saw Dunn get into his grandma’s car and pulled them over.Related Article: WPD gets warrant for teen who hit Panera drive-thru menuDunn was taken into custody and charged with robbery with a dangerous weapon.He is in jail under a $50,000 bond. Justin Taylor Dunn (Photo: New Hanover Co. Sheriff’s Office) NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — A Pender County man is accused of robbing friends who gave him a ride to Wilmington.According to the New Hanover County Sheriff’s Office, Justin Taylor Dunn, 20, rode with a couple from Hampstead to New Hanover County. When they were on Porters Neck Road, he told them to pull onto Bray’s Drive.- Advertisement – last_img read more

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Deputies search for man accused of robbing Southport gas station

first_imgSheriff deputies are searching for man they say robbed a Southport gas station. (Photo: BCSO) SOUTHPORT, NC (WWAY) — Does this man look familiar? Brunswick County Sheriff’s Office is searching for him after they say he robbed a BP gas station on Southport-Supply Road in Southport.The robbery happened Saturday evening at approximately 8:30 p.m.The suspect is described as a white male, approximately 6’0” tall, wearing a short sleeve, dark blue t-shirt, tan pants, and a camouflage beanie. He also has a beard or facial hair.If you know any information, please contact the BCSO. 1 of 3last_img

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FEMA awards 17M to Boiling Spring Lakes for stormwater project

first_img The $1.7 million grant represents a federal share of the total project cost of $2,310,000. The remainder will come from non-federal sources.This grant is funded through FEMA’s Pre-Disaster Mitigation Grant Program, which provides funds to states, territories, federally-recognized tribes, and local communities for hazard mitigation planning and the implementation of all hazard mitigation projects prior to a disaster event. Federal Emergency Management (Photo: MGN Online) WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The City of Boiling Spring Lakes will receive a large grant from FEMA to fund a spillway project for Allen Creek.The improvements will help protect the floodplain and surrounding properties and help mitigate erosion and flooding caused by the spillway at Sanford Dam.- Advertisement – last_img read more

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New Hanover County in need of foster grandparents

first_img To become a foster grandparent, you must be age 55 or older, meet income eligibility requirements, complete successful background checks and agree to volunteer at least 15 hours a week. (Photo: Pixabay) NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — New Hanover County is looking for volunteers to join their Foster Grandparent Program.Foster grandparent volunteers are assigned to a school and classroom to help children improve school readiness, skills, and confidence to succeed in life.- Advertisement – last_img

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Man accused of breaking into Tabor City home setting it on fire

first_imgJocquavius Quashean Gerald (Photo: Columbus Co. Sheriff’s Office) COLUMBUS COUNTY, NC (WWAY) — A Tabor City man is accused of breaking into a home and setting it on fire.Jocquavius Quashean Gerald, 20, is charged with 2nd degree arson and breaking or entering with the intent to commit a felony.- Advertisement – Columbus County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Michele Tatum says deputies responded Monday night to 23 Stacey Lane in Tabor City in reference to a structure fire.The investigation revealed Gerald broke into the home and intentionally set it on fire.Gerald is being held under a $30,000 bond.Related Article: Illegal “night club” searched in Fair Blufflast_img

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What has happened during the past few days is very worrying –

first_imgThe Forum of PN Professionals (Forum Professjonisti Partit Nazzjonalista) has stated on Facebook that the latest developments within the PN are of concern not only because they are affecting the operation of the Party as the Opposition but also because the PN is not being of service to those people who have dedicated their lives and their time to the Party.They said that maintaining a good level of governance is vital and called on those responsible to be accountable for the outcome of the last elections, as well as for what happened during last Saturday’s vote to fill David Stellini’s seat in Parliament.The Forum said that the decisions being taken now will affect future generations and added that one cannot choose to apply democracy in certain situations but not in others.WhatsApp SharePrint <a href=’http://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/ck.php?n=ab2c8853&amp;cb={random}’ target=’_blank’><img src=’https://revive.newsbook.com.mt/www/delivery/avw.php?zoneid=97&amp;cb={random}&amp;n=ab2c8853&amp;ct0={clickurl_enc}’ border=’0′ alt=” /></a>last_img read more

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Google TV Leaves The stage for android Tv

first_imgAdvertisement Each year’s CES marks the launch of several new devices and technologies, but the electronics expo’s 2015 edition rang the death knell for Google TV, the company’s smart TV platform that launched way back in 2010 and never quite took off. And that’s probably a good thing.Google TV incorporated Android and Chrome into a 10-foot interface, compatible with a QWERTY physical remote, as the way to interact with apps, games and online video content on televisions.  – Advertisement – While it sounded great on paper, the execution left a lot to be desired — laggy apps, poor customization options and a clunky overall experience marred Google TV’s reputation before it could really take off.Today, the company announced that it will no longer update Google TV, and itsdeveloper tools and libraries won’t be available anymore.While Google says that existing Google TV devices and associated apps and features will continue to work, it’s all about moving on bigger and better things — namely, Android TV and Cast-enabled apps and devices.Android TV was announced last year and Google showcased the new platform on the Nexus Player set-top streaming box.  It also made a splash at this year’s CES, with Sony announcing that all 2015 Bravia TVs will feature Android TV. Google is also teaming up with Sharp, Huawei, Razer and others to launch more Android TV devices in the future.With this new take on smart TV software, Google promises to bring more and better video content as well as multiplayer gaming, to the living room. And unlike its previous attempt, the company is going for a more streamlined, content-focused experience, instead of trying to pack in too many things into one device (like a full-fledged browser).We’ll have to wait and see how far Google can get in its quest to dominate in the TV space, and where it takes us as we follow along.last_img read more

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NCC reduces fine imposed on MTN to US 34 billion

first_imgThe Nigerian Communications Commission head offices in Abuja. Image Credit: 247UReports Advertisement Shareholders are advised that, after further engagements with the Nigerian Authorities, the NCC has reduced the imposed fine.MTN has received a formal letter dated 2 December 2015 from the NCC informing the Company that, after considering the Company’s request, it has taken the decision to reduce the fine on the MTN Nigerian business from the original N1,040,000,000,000 (One Trillion, Forty Billion Naira) to N674 Billion Naira which has to be paid by 31 December 2015. The fine relates to the late disconnecting of 5.1 million MTN Nigerian subscribers in August and September 2015.[related-posts]The Company is carefully considering the NCC’s reply, however the Executive Chairman Phuthuma Nhleko will immediately and urgently re-engage with the Nigerian Authorities before responding formally, as it is essential for the Company to follow due process to ensure the best outcome for the Company, its stakeholders and the Nigerian Authorities and accordingly all factors having a bearing on the situation will be thoroughly and carefully considered before the Company arrives at a final decision. – Advertisement – Shareholders are therefore advised to continue to exercise caution when dealing in the Company’s securities until a further announcement is made.last_img read more

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Over 2000 Youth Receive Barclays ReadytoWork and Google Digicon Mini Certificates

first_imgThomas Twesige (L), Project Manager BrighterMonday Uganda hands over a certificate to Erone Ronali (R) upon completion of the ReadytoWork face-to-face training that commenced on December 5, 2016 at the Hub, Oasis Mall. The training is still ongoing till December 16, 2016 Advertisement The free face-to-face Ready to Work skills training commenced early this month on December 5th 2016 at the HUB, Oasis Mall. Over 2,000 youth have so far attained the free training where by at the end, each participant received two Certificates in; Barclays ReadytoWork, and Google Digicon Mini.ReadytoWork created by Barclays Bank together with DigiCon Mini; a creation by Google and implemented by Blu Flamingo intends to provide face-to-face free skills training sessions from 5th to 16th December, 2016.Speaking at the training, Juliana K. Lugayizi Citizenship Manager, Marketing and Corporate Relations, Barclays Uganda said, “Barclays is committed for the next three years to manage ReadytoWork initiative. Over 7,000 people have already registered online but not all have trained due to challenges of internet data. Much as ReadytoWork is predominantly online based, this face-to-face training is to help manage the internet data challenge by giving participants a chance to finish the ReadytoWork course.” – Advertisement – Lugayizi added that “Barclays Bank came up with this ReadytoWork initiative because it wants the youth to be job creators. “She noted that most youth lack confidence and therefore the ReadytoWork training intends to build on their confidence to go in for jobs and be successful.Young people in Uganda are grappling with the challenge of limited opportunities, lack of skills and uncertainty about how to gain meaningful employment or become entrepreneurs. With the Ready to Work training, young people will be empowered with the training, support and learning they need to enhance their employment and self-employability prospects.Thomas Twesige, Project Manager BrighterMonday Uganda, the implementing partners of Barclays ReadytoWork said “We have an unsubstantiated 80% unemployed youth in Uganda. As BrighterMonday, we seek to empower as many youth as possible for the ReadytoWork skills.”Twesige added that this training will further prepare young people for the critical transition from education into the world of work. It will be based on four modules namely: Work Skills, People skills, Money Skills and Entrepreneurial skills.Kwikiriza Benson a of the beneficiary of the two-day free applauded the organizers of the training saying “ReadytoWork has taught me that knowledge is more powerful and with the acquisition of knowledge and Skills through this program I am now able to apply skills learnt to push my business to the next level.”1 of 2 Thomas Twesige (L), Project Manager BrighterMonday Uganda hands over a certificate to Erone Ronali (R) upon completion of the ReadytoWork face-to-face training that commenced on December 5, 2016 at the Hub, Oasis Mall. The training is still ongoing till December 16, 2016 (L-R) Kwikiriza Benson, Erone Ronali, Ahirirwe Olivah, Atuhaire Rahab and Akantambira Kenneth show off their certificates that they received upon completion of the ReadytoWork face-to-face free training that commenced on December 5, 2016 at the Hub, Oasis Mall. The training is still ongoing till December 16, 2016Another beneficiary, Ahirirwe Oliviah said “The ReadytoWork Modules have taught me to groom my emotional intelligence in order to excel at my work environment.”ReadytoWorkUg is targeted at High school students in their A-level, University students, Tertiary institutions and graduates who already completed their respective courses but are looking to better their employability skills. This training is also appropriate for persons of all ages interested in scaling up their skills in any of the four module areas.‘ReadytoWork’s primary aim is to improve the employment prospects of young people through education resources, online content, workshops and work experience, better equipping them to find work opportunities or start up their own business.The ReadytoWork curriculum is currently in the process of being accredited through the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) which is recognized in all of Barclays’ 12 Africa markets.This free Ready to Work self-taught training can be done both online and face-to-face, and can be completed within just two days. Youth who could not do online registration are encouraged to come to the Hub, Oasis Mall to manually register and have the opportunity to acquire the free skills training on the following dates, namely; 12th-13th and 15th-16th December, 2016.last_img read more

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VIDEO Easy User Guide to Online Shopping on Kilimall in Uganda

first_imgA Female user pictured on a laptop shopping online with Kilimall Uganda. (Photo Courtesy: PC Tech Magazine) Advertisement Kilimall Uganda launched last year in May and has been riding on a number of advantages to be the number one online shopping marketplace in Uganda.With Global Shopping, where people can buy a variety of products from all over the world at factory prices, Kilimall looks to attract more shoppers. But one thing still remains a challenge to many potential shoppers; How do I go about this online shopping thingie?In an exclusive interview with the Country Manager, Wang Chengyang, he admits that people in Uganda are still not familiar with online shopping, and it’s a bit hard to change people’s shopping behavior. – Advertisement – So here’s an easy user guide to enjoy shopping the widest variety of items from Kilimall Online Shopping in Uganda:1. Select the items you wish to purchaseFind the products you want by browsing through categories, typing keywords into the search bar or by viewing products on promotion. Add the required quantity of each item into your shopping cart.2. Fill your detailsMake sure to enter your correct delivery address and a Voucher or Coupon Code (if available) in order to receive instant discounts on your shopping.3. Choose Payment methodSelect from available payment options. At the moment there is MTN Mobile Money or Airtel Money.  [related-posts]last_img read more

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Uganda Police to Arrest Street Simcard Vendors

first_imgUCC Executive Director, Eng. Godfrey Mutabaazi with Inspector General of Police, Gen. Kale Kayihura meeting telecommunications operators on Friday morning. Advertisement All vendors selling simcards on streets will be arrested with immediate effect, Kampala Metropolitan Police Spokesperson, Emillian Kayima has said.“The police is going to write a circular and communicate to all our territorial commanders to enforce this resolution immediately, most likely tomorrow,” he added.Kayima was speaking to journalists shortly after a meeting convened by Uganda Communications Commission (UCC) together with police and all telecom service providers at the Commission’s headquarters in Bugolobi. – Advertisement – In the meeting attended by UCC Execitive Director Eng. Godfrey Mutabazi, the Inspector General of Police Gen. Kale Kayihura and the Commissioner of Police in charge of criminal investigations, AIGP Grace Akulo, UCC resolved to ban sale of simcards along the streets and other non-authorized places.UCC Executive Director, Eng. Godfrey Mutabaazi with Inspector General of Police, Gen. Kale Kayihura meeting telecommunications operators on Friday morning.The ban follows a directive by UCC to telecom operators to deactivate all partially and non-registered simcards due to the increased crime rate that is aided by the same cards.Telecom operators have also been ordered to match their databases with the National ID database to establish whether the identities of registered subscribers are a match.[related-posts]The meeting further resolved that only National Identity cards and passports shall be considered the only validated documents for any individual to have their simcard registered contrary to other documents like; a letter from Local Council (L.C) leaders, work and students I.Ds which would be used.Refugees in Uganda who need to own simcards will require approval and an official document from the Office of the Prime Minister before they can access a simcard.Over the recent past, Telecom companies have been under scrutiny over the increasing number of unregistered SIM cards on streets which has arguably contributed adversely to increased crime rate in the country.According to Kayima, unregistered simcards are a big security threat and facilitates terror activities, organized and transnational crime among others.last_img read more

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iPhone X iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus Officially Launched Price Release

first_img(Photo Courtesy: Digital Trends) Advertisement Cupertino-based tech firm, Apple Inc. on Tuesday launched their most anticipated flagship models; the iPhone 8 and 8+. But alongside the model was the iPhone X which took most of the spotlight at the event that was held at the Steve Jobs Theater – the company’s new campus.According to online reports, the new iPhone X wass placed above the successors of the iPhone 7 and 7+, and has several features that the other two models do not. The highlight, of course, is the bezel-less design, along with the Face ID facial recognition system. In fact, the Touch ID fingerprint sensor – a staple of the iPhones since the iPhone 5s – had to make way for the bezel-less design, thus Face ID is the only means of identity authentication.iPhone X specs The 5.8-Inch flagship spots a screen resolution of 1125×2436 pixels, more than any previous generation iPhone models, and has been dubbed the Super Retina HD Display, hosts a range of sensors including flood illuminator, infrared camera, a dot projector to allow customers to unlock the phablet by just looking at it – a system called Face ID. – Advertisement – The iPhone X also packs a duo of 12MP rear cameras (F/1.8 and f/2.4 apertures), and 7MP selfie camera, the company saying it is brings a Portrait mode feature, which it had introduced to the iPhone 7 Plus last year.The iPhone X price in the US market has been priced at USD$999 (approx. 3,596,400 UGX) and USD$1,149 (approx. 4,136,400 UGX) for the 64GB and 256GB variants respectively.iPhone 8 and 8+ specs While the iPhone 8 (4.7-Inch) and iPhone 8+ (5.5-Inch) design follow the same design language as their predecessors, they sport a metal and glass bodies and come in two storage variants – 64GB and 256GB, support Qi wireless inductive charging, both models powered by A11 Bionic SoC six-core processors, running on the firms latest OS; the iOS 11, Touch ID, LTE Advanced, Bluetooth v5.0, water resistant.The iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus also come with improved cameras, as the iPhone 8 spots 12MP rear camera, and the iPhone 8 Plus a duo of 12MP camera sensors, as they both pack a 7MP front camera.The iPhone 8 price in the US market is at USD$699 (approx. 2,516,400 UGX) and USD$849 (approx. 3,056,400 UGX) for the 64GB and 256GB variants respectively, while for the iPhone 8 Plus will cost USD$799 (approx. 2,876,400 UGX) and USD$949 (approx. 3,416,400 UGX) for the 64GB and 256GB variants respectively, and will be available in Silver, Space Gray, and Gold Finish color variants.Notably, the iPhone 8 models will be available starting September 22nd while the iPhone X is set for November.last_img read more

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Ugandas ICT Development Index improves ranked 20th in Africa

first_imgJames Saaka Executive Director, National Information Technology Authority-Uganda (NITA-U) Advertisement Uganda has moved up 5 places in the ICT Development Index (IDI). Previously 158 in 2016, the improvement to 152 is indicative of the steady success the multifaceted approach being undertaken by the Government of Uganda and the Private Sector in driving the Digital agenda in Uganda.This puts the country’s ranking regionally to 20th in Africa and 2nd in the East African region.The 2017 edition of the Measuring the Information Society Report was launched during the World Telecommunication/ICT Indicators Symposium (WTIS) 2017, in Hammamet, Tunisia. The report is published by the International Telecom Union (ITU) which is the United Nations specialized agency for information and communication technologies–ICTs. – Advertisement – In its 9th edition, the Measuring the Information Society Report, an annual report published by ITU since 2009, features key ICT data and benchmarking tool to measure the information society, the ICT Development Index (IDI). The report presents a quantitative analysis of the information society and highlights new and emerging trends and measurement issues.“This is a welcome improvement in our global ranking by the respected ITU. It’s definitely not where we want to be, but is testimony that the different initiatives that are being undertaken under the able leadership of the Ministry of ICT & National Guidance, have started to bear fruit. A continuous improvement in the rankings will guarantee the country an improvement in its GDP” said James Saaka, Executive Director of NITA-U.The improvement in the ranking has been buttressed by the strategic rollout of ICT infrastructure by both the Private Sector and Government.Specific to the government, NITA-U has successfully completed three phases of the National Backbone Infrastructure (NBI). With over 2,400km of fiber laid across Uganda, with several towns connected, these include Kampala, Entebbe, and Mutukula, to mention but a few. Additionally, the extension of the NBI is planned to cover the underserved areas of the country.This investment as Government has led to the reduction in internet bandwidth pricing from $190 per Mbps to a new pricing of $70 per Mbps for government agencies. It is reported that the price will reduce further, in July 2018, to $50 per Mbps for Ministries, Departments & Agencies and Local Governments. (MDAs).By the end of Financial Year 17/18, NITA-U plans to have connected 730 MDAs and Local Governments to the backbone. There are currently 321 MDAs and Local Governments (LGs) already connected to the NBI.Commenting on the development, Permanent Secretary, the Ministry of ICT and National Guidance, Hon. Bagiire Vincent Waiswa, added that “This highlights the positive headway made in our collective effort to Digitize Uganda. Our aim is to continue enabling the lives of Ugandan citizens by demystifying the concept of the use of ICT through the provision of reliable and consistent online government services. I am happy to share that we shall soon, together with the Public Procurement and Disposal of Public Assets Authority (PPDA), roll out the Electronic Government Procurement that will ease & automate the government procurement process. This is a critical driver in the Ease of Doing Business Index of a country.”As a measure to further improve Government rankings, NITA-U has been piloting the MyUG concept which aims at connecting the unconnected. MyUG is a free WiFI service that has been partially implemented in 216 locations. Given the learnings, the service is going to be revamped to enable citizens to access Government services at no cost.Additionally, Government will be implementing two major activities necessary for the citizens to attain the full benefit of ICT. These include:Government ePayment Gateway: This a Government e-Payment gateway that will facilitate electronic payments for Government services in a bid to make service delivery more efficient and responsive to the needs of the citizens and as well promote online business.Government System Integration: This Integration of all Government systems will ensure simplicity, the efficiency of access to Government services in a secure environment. Using a single User ID (National Identification Number), citizens will have easy access to Government services. Additionally, this will promote transparency for Government as data sharing across agencies will be seamless and digitized.[related-posts]The Government remains determined to improve access to ICT by enabling an environment that allows for affordability and reliability of ICT services. This is augmented by the various investments in ICT across Government.last_img read more

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Estonia and Uganda Strengthen Cooperation Towards Achieving Full eGovernment Services

first_imgNITA-U team with the delegation from Estonia Advertisement A delegation from the Republic of Estonia this morning visited the National Information Technology Authority Uganda (NITA-U) to discuss the transformation to electronic public services and further possibilities in cooperation towards digitizing Uganda.The delegation which was led by the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Estonia, Väino Reinart, included officials from the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, and the Association of Information Technology and Telecommunications.Speaking during the visit, James Saaka, Executive Director NITA-U, said that the relationship with Estonia has provided a platform upon which Uganda can visualize the benefits of bringing services online. – Advertisement – “We know that Estonia has reached unprecedented levels of digitization with 99% of public services are available online 24/7. The level of transparency you have achieved is what Uganda is striving to attain. In 2017, for example, the Ugandan government saved 4 Million working hours from providing automated services.  We developed 297 applications/systems and 74 services are available on the national E-Citizens portal (www.ecitizen.go.ug),’’ he said.NITA-U ED James Saaka with Director eGoverment, Peter Kahiigi & Robert Muwanga,RCIP coordinatorThe visit comes almost seven months after Government of Uganda signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Estonian Government. The Memorandum of Understanding covered four areas of cooperation which includes: Electronic Government (e-Government), Policy & Regulation, Smart City Technologies and Research & Innovation.Estonia has emerged as a global leader in e-government operations.  A citizen in Estonia only interacts with a public servant three times in their lives; for marriages, divorces, and real-estate. In 2014, Estonia even opened up its e-government to outsiders, offering an “e-residency” that enables entrepreneurs to start a business in the country while living elsewhere.1 of 2 Vaino Reinart(Extreme right) the Deputy Minister, Ministry of Foreign affairs Estonia led the delegation “In recent years, relations between Uganda and Estonia have moved very quickly to tangible cooperation and knowledge exchange. We are glad that there are already real outcomes of our cooperation in the ICT sector through shared learning and joint projects. The Estonian Government is committed to continue working with Uganda to realize their digital vision” said  Minister Väino Reinart.“Estonia started building their information society about twenty years ago, there was no digital data being collected. The general population did not have the internet or even devices with which to use it.  Currently, Uganda has more than 16 million internet users, Government through NITA-U has completed the implementation of all the Phases three phases of the National Backbone infrastructure and phase four has commenced connecting the infrastructure to West Nile and Karamoja regions. This means that all regions of the country will have been covered by the end of phase four.  We definitely have no reason why we can’t be like Estonia’’, said Peter Kahiigi, Director eGovernment at NITA-U.Such initiatives are in line with the benchmarking aspect of Uganda’s e-Government master plan. It is important to review the implementation experiences from those nations which have made huge leaps in the e-Government sector and incorporate their knowledge within Uganda’s design.[related-posts]last_img read more

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Social Media Mobile Money Taxes Will Be Reviewed And A New Bill

first_imgRuhakana Rugunda, Uganda’s prime minister, speaks during an interview in New York, U.S. on Thursday, July 23, 2015. Photographer: Michael Nagle/Bloomberg *** Local Caption *** Ruhakana Rugunda Advertisement Following Wednesday’s protest led by Hon. Robert Kyagulanyi Ssentamu a.k.a Bobi Wine, in a bid to drop taxes on on social media and mobile money, the Prime Minister to Uganda Ruhakana Rugunda has come out and said that the taxes would be reviewed and a new bill will be brought next week.In a letter dated 11th July 2018 and signed by the Prime Minister, stated that the Government is reviewing the taxes taking into consideration the concerns of the public and its implications on the budget.“The review is being expedited to ensure that Government presents an Amendment of the Excise Duty (Amendment) Act 2018 to this House for debate on Thursday next week (19th July 2018) where Hon. Members will therefore have the opportunity to debate and consult widely to guide Parliament during the consideration and debate of the Amendment Bill,” says Rugunda. – Advertisement – The taxes a part of the Excise Duty (Amendment) Bill 2018 that was presented to and passed by the Ugandan Parliament was subsequently assented to by H.E the President of Uganda; Yoweri K. Museveni, and consequently became an Act of Parliament.The Act imposes a 1% levy on receiving, payments and withdraws through mobile money platforms. In addition, it imposes a UGX200 charge on Over-the-Top (OTT) services per day of access. However, Ugandans can choose to pay UGX1,400 weekly or UGX6,000 monthly.While these taxes are causing a public outcry amongst Ugandans, a London-based NGO firm focused on human rights; Amnesty International has urged Ugandan authorities to scrap the tax, calling it “a clear attempt to undermine the right to freedom of expression” to Ugandans.In a letter signed by the President, stated that social media tax is here to stay, while mobile money tax, the 1% was a miscommunication as the actual figure was supposed to be 0.5%. However, the 0.5% the President talks about could be just “words” as it is reported that many Ugandan are still charged 1%.While Ugandans still protest online with #SayNoToMobileMoneyTax, and #ThisTaxMustGo campaigns, the ICT Association of Uganda also came out and voiced their concern over the taxes, and resolved to support domestic and international efforts to repeal them, including the legal petition that was launched by the Cyber Law Initiative alongside four of its Directors; Daniel Opio Bill, Moses Baguma, Emmanuel Okiror, and Silver Kayondo earlier this month.In a letter signed by the ICTAU Chairman; Albert Mucunguzi, stated that the taxes were enacted by the Government of Uganda without sufficient deliberation or consultation and are not supported by evidence-based research.“They will undoubtedly constrain the development of our industry, economy, and society,” says the statement.[related-posts]The committee said they are engaging the Ministry of ICT and National Guidance together with its agencies Uganda Communication Commission (UCC), and National Information Technology Authority (NITA-U) in order to push for a sectoral dialogue to ensure that all future laws and regulations related to Uganda’s ICT industry originate from a predictable, deliberate process that incorporates evidence-based research and public consultation.“We’re currently awaiting their response, as we will keep you updated.”last_img read more

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