Soprano primed to hit right notes

first_imgPaul Deegan believes star mare Midnight Soprano could take her game to another level this season ahead of her return to action in the Cork Racecourse Mallow Noblesse Stakes. The six-year-old won five races, including two Listed prizes, during a superb 2012 campaign and looks to have a fine opportunity to open her Pattern-race account in this mile-and-a-half Group Three. From what he has seen at home, Deegan thinks there are signs Midnight Soprano is in better shape than she has ever been. “It’s a good Group Three but she won’t mind the ground and gets the trip well. She’s fit and she’s well and I’m looking forward to getting her started. She has been an absolute star for us over the past few seasons, a beautiful natured mare and a pleasure to have in the yard,” said the trainer. “She has done better over the past winter than any before, and has really strengthened this time around. Hopefully it brings about another bit of improvement in her. “She won the Saval Beg on really soft ground last year but she seems to go on most types of ground. Her sister (Celtic Soprano) got a bit sharper as she got older and this mare might be the same. A mile and a half is probably her optimum trip. She takes very little work and gets naturally fit. Her last few pieces of work have been very pleasing.” The Kevin Prendergast-trained Majenta takes a significant step up in class, just a week after winning in handicap company at the Curragh. Prendergast said: “She’s run three times and won twice, and we’d like to get her some black type. Her owner Joerg Vasicek is a breeder and he got the record price of 215,000 euro at the Goffs Land Rover Sale for a three-year-old during the week. “She’s come out of the Curragh race very well. It looks a hot contest but she’s getting weight-for-age, and we’ll be hoping to get her into the placings.” A field of 10 has been declared, with Dermot Weld’s Ribblesdale heroine Princess Highway the highest rated filly in the field. There are two challengers from Britain in Ralph Beckett’s Cubanita and Testosterone from Ed Dunlop’s yard. Beckett said: “She’s in good form and I think the trip and ground should be in her favour, which is why we’re travelling over with her. She’s obviously got her work cut out to beat Dermot Weld’s filly, but she’s in great shape and we’ll give it a go.” center_img Press Associationlast_img read more

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Obasanjo to Empower Liberian Girls

first_imgFoundation of Olusegun Obasanjo (OOF), former president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the government of Liberia through the Ministry of Education (MOE). The purpose is to come up with and put into operation in Liberia, projects that will target and improve individuals in the areas of Health, Education, Finance and Economic Planning, Labor, and Youth and Sports.The MOU is to serve as a means by which Liberia and the OOF might think and work together in areas of common interest.One of the first things to be done would be to lay the groundwork for targeted activities and then map out approaches on how the two entities might proceed to operate together.According to the MOU, the GOL and OOF would work in partnership in developing education program focusing on the Gender Responsive Accelerated Vocational Technical Program (GRAVTP); support will go to the GRAVTP program, the School Development Program, the support STEM Skills Acquisition Program as well as the Teacher Training Scheme and Community Awareness Program.They would promote projects of an acceptable commercial nature in the areas of infrastructure and agriculture with the goal of increasing employment for the youth of Liberia. They would support programs that promote health awareness particularly concerning non-communicable diseases; and any other activities and program in areas of mutual interests which the Parties may jointly devise.In regards to the scope of collaboration, the GOL shall develop and assist OOF to mobilize resources and develop strategic plans to generate funding from regional, bilateral, and multilateral agencies. It will develop, implement, and monitor a coherent mobilization effort through maintaining dialogue and strengthening relations with major donor agreements, expectations and expanding the donor base. It is hoped that the Ministries of Education, Gender and Development and other GOL agencies will be encouraged to advice on innovative fund raising strategies and identifying strategic development opportunities, among other things.The duration of this MOU is for ten (10) years, from the date of the last signature; however, either Party may terminate the MOU by giving three months’ prior notice to the other.The foundation is a charity organization dedicated  to bringing human security to all people by partnering with and funding organizations across Africa that are working on the Foundation’s initiatives crucial to human security.Though the beneficiaries of the MOU were not quantified, officials said that a substantial amount of girls and young women are targeted to benefit from the agreement and its planned activities.Former president Obasanjo signed on behalf of his foundation, while Education Minister, Etmonia D. Tarpeh did the same on behalf of the government and her Ministry. The ceremony was witnessed by President Sirleaf and officials of OFF.Speaking at the MOU signing ceremony on Sunday, April 13, at the Executive Mansion, former President Obasanjo said the issue of girls’ empowerment is a critical challenge in Africa. He said this problem has no boundaries as it is prevalent on the African continent, not to speak of Liberia that is just emerging from 14 years of civil-crisis.He said his foundation has the vision to partner with organizations and governments and to serve as change agents across the Continent.The concept of human security has been a long-standing commitment of President Obasanjo’s—to promote the initiatives that can dramatically change the lives of individuals and communities on the continent; and the Liberian project has been specifically designed to cater to the needs of girls, who according to former President Obasanjo, have been culturally deprived for ‘rock of ages.’He apologized to President Sirleaf, for what he termed ‘interrupting her service time on this Palm Sunday; but serving humanity, the cause for which the MOU was being signed, is the same as serving God, he suggested.President Sirleaf, in welcoming former president Obasanjo to Liberia, said the signing of the MOU, in part, is to support the education sector—especially the training of young women, particularly in technical fields, to enable them enhance their employment potential. “This is a big contribution to Liberia’s development effort,” she said.President Sirleaf said, “We want to be grateful to President Obasanjo who continues to support Liberia education. I want to thankful to him for this new initiative to train young women especially in the technical areas. This is significant for us.”“We have done a lot in capacitating our girls by providing them opportunities; but this MOU, when fully implemented, will help a lot of them with technical capacities to support themselves,” she added.Education Minister Tarpeh called the signing of the MOU “a dream come true, because recently there was a discussion on what needs to be done with the youth of Liberia; that discussion led to a three-year Action Plan for the education sector. “What we have signed today is part of that activity and addresses the need of young people—especially girls,” she said.Prior to the signing ceremony, Minister Tarpeh said that the MOU will be a great help for young women who will take advantage of the program. She lauded President Obasanjo for the initiative.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

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ALL-IRELAND SUCCESS FOR COLÁISTE AILIGH DRAMA

first_imgColáiste Ailigh’s senior drama group tasted All-Ireland success at his week’s Féile Scoildrámaíochta finals in Mullingar.Their drama, ‘Faoi Dhrúcht an ceo’ which was written and directed by Proinsias Mac a’Bhaird, picked up the best Leaving Certificate dráma title and also the best Pobalcholáiste award.  ALL-IRELAND SUCCESS FOR COLÁISTE AILIGH DRAMA was last modified: April 29th, 2016 by John2Share 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:Colaiste AilighFéile Scoildrámaíochtalast_img read more

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