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Trump to bash Biden, tout own record amid crises in RNC speech | News



President Donald Trump will formally accept the Republican Party’s nomination for the upcoming presidential election in a speech at the White House on Thursday night that will be aimed at rallying his base of political supporters and addressing the crises of the pandemic, cratered economy and civil unrest confronting the United States.

Trump is expected to tell a television audience of as many as 20 million that the US economy was prospering before the coronavirus pandemic because of Republican tax cuts and deregulation of business and that the economy is roaring back in a “V-shaped” recovery under his leadership.

While the US stock markets have recovered from a plunge in March triggered by the coronavirus shutdowns, a dual recovery is emerging with some companies and workers prospering in the digital economy while others are struggling to get by in the physical world of bricks and mortar that is in the throes of a painful, sharp downturn.

On Thursday, the US Department of Labor reported that some 27 million Americans are collecting unemployment benefits from state and local programmes, and Congress and the president have yet to agree on a new rescue package that would be needed to keep the economy afloat through the end of the year.

Trump is taking centre stage at the Republican National Convention at a time when outrage about the police shooting of a Black man in Kenosha, Wisconsin, has sparked new protests and riots, amplifying the civil unrest that has swept US cities since May.

Trump has adopted a pro-police, anti-rioter posture towards the protests and has sought to stoke fears among white voters that election of Joe Biden and the Democratic Party, which supports police reform proposals, would lead to lawlessness and chaos.

Trump supporter and conservative Fox News host Tucker Carlson defended 17-year-old Kyle Rittenhouse’s alleged shooting of protesters in Kenosha on Tuesday.

“The chaos that began with the first George Floyd protests on Memorial Day has reached its inevitable and bloody conclusion,” Carlson said on Wednesday.

Carlson’s remarks drew a backlash causing “Fire Tucker Carlson Now” to trend on Twitter with many saying he was justifying the killing. Rittenhouse has been charged with first-degree intentional homicide.

Democratic presidential nominee Biden said on Thursday Trump is exploiting the violence in Kenosha and other cities to help his re-election campaign.

“He views this as a political benefit to him. He’s rooting for more violence,” Biden said on MSNBC, a liberal-leaning television news outlet.

“He’s encouraging this. He’s not diminishing it at all. This is his America now,” Biden said.

Protesters march in Minneapolis during a demonstration against police brutality and racism after a video circulated on Sunday showing the shooting by police of Black man Jacob Blake – multiple times, in the back – as he tried to get in his car, in Kenosha, Wisconsin [Kerem Yucel/AFP]

Biden leads Trump by 7 percentage points in a rolling average of national polls calculated by Trump argues the contest is closer and is making a case he can come from behind to win key swing states in the Electoral College as he did in 2016.

Trump and his supporters contend that the president has done more for Black Americans than any other president since Abraham Lincoln who freed the slaves during the US Civil War in 1862. As evidence, they point to high Black employment prior to the pandemic, Trump’s support for tax benefits for urban neighbourhoods, funding for historically Black colleges and criminal justice reform.

“Trump is really in a strange position because as the incumbent he is likely to take a lot of blame from for voters for the current situations, not only for the economy and the pandemic, but also for the civil unrest and rioting,” said Keith Whittington, a professor of politics at Princeton University.

The president has said he is not responsible for civil unrest in the cities, placing responsibility on state and local politicians, “a reasonable approach – from his perspective”, Whittington told Al Jazeera.

“That is a difficult challenge, to make that kind of argument to voters. It may be more credible in the context of the rioting than in the context of the pandemic where the Trump administration is more tied-up in the policy response,” he said.

Democrats have criticised Trump for using the White House as a stage for his acceptance speech. Trump and his team have broken with US political norms that generally prohibit politicians from using federal resources for campaign purposes.

Trump will deliver his speech to a select audience of Republican legislators and party donors assembled on the South Lawn of the White House.

Using the historic building and official residence of the US presidents as a backdrop, Trump’s campaign seems to want to create a monumental setting for the speech similar to Trump’s remarks at Mount Rushmore, South Dakota, on July 3, the day before the US’s Independence Day.

In his Mount Rushmore speech, Trump warned of a “new far-left fascism” that is waging “a merciless campaign to wipe out our history, defame our heroes, erase our values and indoctrinate our children”.

U.S. President Trump and first lady Melania Trump attend South Dakota's U.S. Independence Day Mount Rushmore fireworks celebrations at Mt. Rushmore in South Dakota

Attendees listened as President Trump spoke at South Dakota’s Mount Rushmore on July 3, 2020; Trump will use the White House as a backdrop for a similar speech on the last night of the Republican National Convention [File: Tom Brenner/Reuters]

Vice President Mike Pence spoke live to the convention programme from an outdoor venue at historic Fort McHenry in Baltimore on Wednesday, and first lady Melania Trump spoke live from the Rose Garden at the White House on Tuesday.

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Charles Mbire gains $1.2 million as stake in MTN Uganda rises above $51 million



Ugandan businessman and MTN Uganda Chairman Charles Mbire has seen the market value of his stake in MTN Uganda surge above $51 million in just two days, as the share price in the leading teleco company increased by a single digit.

The single-digit bump in the share price caused the market value of Mbire’s stake to gain UGX4.42 billion ($1.24 million) in less than two days.

The million-dollar increase in the value of his stake came after Uganda’s largest telecom company delivered the country’s largest-ever IPO through the listing of 22.4 billion ordinary shares on the Uganda Securities Exchange (USE).

Upon completing the largest IPO in Uganda’s history, MTN Uganda raised a record UGX535 billion ($150.4 million) from the applications that it received for a total of 2.9 billion shares, including incentive shares.

As of press time, Dec. 7, shares in the company were trading at UGX204.95 ($0.0574), down six basis points from their opening price this morning.

Data gathered by Billionaires.Africa revealed that since the telecom company registered its shares on the Ugandan bourse on Mon., Dec. 6, its share price has increased by 2.5 percent from UGX200 ($0.056) to UGX204.95 ($0.0574) as of the time of writing, as retail investors sustained buying interest long after the public offering.

The increase in the company’s share price caused the market value of Mbire’s 3.98-percent stake to rise from UGX178.45 billion ($49.96 million) to UGX182.86 billion ($51.2 million).

In less than two days, his stake gained more than UGX4.42 billion ($1.24 million).

In a statement after the successful listing of MTN Uganda’s shares, Mbire said the IPO shows the confidence that Ugandans and other investors have in the company, its brand and strategic intent.

“We commend all the regulators for their support in our work to become a USE-listed company and to comply in a timely manner with the listing provisions of the national telecommunications operators’ license,” he said.

Steady but sure-MBIRE who is the biggest investor on Ugandas Stock exchange with stocks valued at more than $55 million is laughing all the way to the bank after MTN declared the latest dividend payout.He has steadily grown his business empire which is believed to be more that $350 million (debt free).

Steady but sure-MBIRE who is the biggest investor on Ugandas Stock exchange with stocks valued at more than $55 million is laughing all the way to the bank after MTN declared the latest dividend payout.He has steadily grown his business empire which is believed to be more that $350. ( debt free).

He is into communications-revenue assurance-cement-distribution-oil services-real estate-oil exploration and logistics.

Source: Billionaires Africa

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2-year-old dies at Arua hospital as nurse demands Shs 210,000 bribe




A two-year-old child died at Arua Regional Referral hospital after a nurse, Paul Wamala demanded a bribe amounting to Shs 210,000 before carrying out an operation. 

The incident happened on Saturday, after Aron Nabil, a two-year-old child was referred to the hospital for an operation after he was diagnosed with intestinal obstruction, a medical emergency caused by a blockage that keeps food or liquid from passing through the small intestine or large intestine.

According to the relatives of the child, Wamala allegedly asked them to initially give him Shs 30,000 to buy medicines to commence the procedure. He however returned shortly asking for an additional Shs 180,000 from the relatives.

Emily Adiru, a resident of Osu cell, in Bazar Ward, Central Division, and a relative of the child says although they paid money to Wamala, he abandoned the child without carrying out the operation. According to Adiru, Wamala later refunded Shs 200,000 through mobile money, after she threatened to report him to the police.

“They told us this boy needs an operation which was supposed to be done in the morning on Sunday at around 7 am. They took him inside there, some doctor came from the theatre, he called one of us and said, we should pay Shs 70,000 for buying medicine to start the operation. We paid the Shs 30,000 [but] after paying the Shs 30,000, after some minutes, the same man came and opened the door and called us again, and told us we should pay another Shs 100,000. We also paid the Shs 100,000 and we thought it is finished. We were outside there waiting for our patient to come out [but] then this man came back again and said we should pay another Shs 80,000,” said Adiru.

Although the operation was later carried out after a 7-hour delay, the child didn’t make it, and relatives attribute the death to negligence. Miria Ahmed, a concerned resident wonders why such incidents have persisted at the facility which is supposed to service the citizens.

“Is the problem the hospital, is it the management or it is the human resource that is the problem in the hospital? A small child like this you demand Shs 210,000 for the operation? Well, if the money was taken and the operation is done, I would say anything bad but this money was taken and the small boy was abandoned in the theatre,” she said. 

When contacted Wamala refused to comment on the allegations. Dr Gilbert Aniku, the acting hospital director says that the hospital will issue an official statement later since consultations about the matter are ongoing.

Arua City resident district commissioner, Alice Akello has condemned the actions of the nurse saying she has ordered his arrest so as to set an example to the rest. The case has been reported to Arua regional referral hospital police post under SD reference No:05/30/05/2022.

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Mexican president’s Mayan Train dealt new legal setback | Tourism News




Activists say the planned tourist train will harm the wildlife and natural features of the Yucatan Peninsula.

Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has been dealt the latest setback to an ambitious plan to create a tourist train to connect the country’s southern Yucatan Peninsula.

On Monday, a judge indefinitely suspended construction on a portion of the project, known as the Mayan Train, saying the plans currently do not comply “with the proceedings of the environmental impact evaluation”.

The ruling follows a legal challenge by activists who said they were concerned the 60km (37 mile) portion of the train that would connect the resorts of Playa del Carmen and Tulum would adversely affect the area’s wildlife, as well as its caves and water-filled sinkholes known as cenotes.

The original plan for the disputed section was for an overpass over a highway, but the route was modified early this year to go through jungle at ground level.

The federal judge cited the “imminent danger” of causing “irreversible damage” to ecosystems, according to one of the plaintiffs, the non-governmental group Defending the Right to a Healthy Environment. In a statement, the group said that authorities had failed to carry out the necessary environmental impact studies before starting construction of the section.

Lopez Obrador had announced the ambitious project in 2018, with construction beginning in 2020. The roughly 1,500km (930 mile) cargo and passenger rail loop was presented as a cornerstone of a wider plan to develop the poorer states and remote towns throughout the about 181,000sq km (70,000sq mile) Yucatan Peninsula.

The railway is set to connect Caribbean beach resorts with Mayan archaeological ruins, with authorities aiming to complete the project by the end of 2023. The plan is estimated to cost about $16bn.

The project has split communities across the region, with some welcoming the economic development and connectivity it would bring. Others, including some local Indigenous communities, have challenged the project, saying it could not only disrupt the migratory routes of endangered species, including jaguars, tapirs and ocelots, but could also potentially damage centuries-old Mayan archaeological sites.

The National Fund for the Promotion of Tourism, the government agency overseeing the project, has said that it expects to “overcome” the latest challenge and that work should continue after an environmental impact statement is finalised. It said the Environment Ministry was currently reviewing its environmental application for the project.

For his part, Lopez Obrador has insisted the railway will not have a significant environmental effect and has accused activists of being infiltrated by “impostors”.

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