The absence of Calabar High School represent-atives was conspicuous at yesterday’s launch of the 2017 Inter-secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA)/Grace-Kennedy Boys and Girls’ Athletics Championships at the Spanish Court Hotel in New Kingston as the defending champions’ protest over the school sports governing body’s decision to allow Ugandan 800 metres runner Aryamanya Rodgers to compete for Kingston College at this year’s event threatened to overshadow all.ISSA President Dr Walton Small moved quickly to address questions over ISSA’s decision despite rules stating that athletes must be registered for their respective schools by September 30 and have at least 80 per cent attendance record to compete at Champs.Small explained that ISSA had received all documentation from Kingston College as early as July 18, 2016 and the athlete was scheduled to arrive in Kingston on August 24, 2016.However, he said, adding that ISSA had been party to the paper trail, when Rodgers arrived at the airport in the Ugandan capital at Kampala, he was refused boarding for Germany as it was determined he needed a German visa to travel. This was communicated to KC authorities and Jamaican embassy officials who moved to address the issue.TICKET CANCELLEDRodgers’ airline ticket was cancelled and a second ticket purchased for him to arrive in Kingston on September 24, 2016, via Kenya. However, he was once again refused boarding.Eventually Rodgers received clearance, and he travelled to Kingston on October 16 and began school at KC on Tuesday, October 18, 2016.”We waived the attendance and deadline registration because we were convinced that enough effort was made to get the young man to Jamaica,” said Small.The vote by those present was one absentia, one against, and the remaining members voted in favour.He noted that not all 15 members of the executive were present. Among those absent was Calabar Principal Albert Corcho, whom Dr Small said learnt of ISSA’s decision on the day it was made.”This is a democratic society, and if the committee decides that the young man should participate, then that was the result, and that was sent off to Kingston College.”Meanwhile, Small said that he had received a letter addressed to the “Chairman of ISSA”, dated Friday, March 10, on Wednesday (March 15) from Corcho, demanding the results of the case be published in the media within seven days of the decision.”Mr Corcho is member of the executive committee, and if he wants, he can get not only the letter that was sent to Kingston College, but also the details of the minutes to see the discussion, to see who voted, who abstained, and who voted against,” he said.ISSA had scheduled an emergency meeting yesterday afternoon to decide on that matter and several others.
Local Donegal campaigners in Right2Water welcome the not guilty verdict delivered by the jury in the trial of those accused of falsely imprisoning the then Tanaiste Joan Burton and her colleague in Jobstown, Dublin in November 2014.TD Paul Murphy, Cllrs Michael Murphy and Kieran Mahon, Scott Masterson, Frank Donaghy and Michael Banks had been on trial for two months in the Dublin Circuit Criminal Court.It took the jury of seven men and four women three hours to deliver their unanimous verdict. Charlie Mc Dyer, Chairperson of Right2Water Donegal said; “This trial underlines how desperate the state were to send out a message those who are prepared to protest against austerity that their resistance wont be tolerated.”Activist Owen Curran added to Mc Dyer’s statement by saying “This trial represented an attack on all of us who got involved in the anti-water charges movement, which was the biggest grassroots protest movement in years.“The purpose was to portray all protesters as being part of a violent mob – instead of what they are, real people standing up for themselves and their communities against those with power whose reckless austerity policies have ripped the heart out of those communities.”Philip Mc Fadden, secretary of Right2Water Donegal said; “Another 11 defendants who have trials starting in October and next year still face an uncertain situation. “How can further prosecutions based on the same investigation now proceed? All charges must be dropped now and the guilty verdict against the 17-year-old already convicted overturned.”Maire Nic Fhearraigh, Gortahork based activist concluded; “This trial has also opened many peoples eyes to how senior Gardaí got involved in what could be termed political policing.“This verdict is a victory for all, including those in Donegal who have, and no doubt will again in the future engage in peaceful disciplined protest.“We have had Mick Murphy, one of the accused, address a meeting in Falcarragh a few months ago, and everyone who attended are delighted that he and his co-accused have been found not guilty, and in doing so have defended the right to protest for us all.”Right2Water Donegal welcome not guilty verdict of Jobstown Protesters was last modified: July 2nd, 2017 by Elaine McCalligShare 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:donegaljobstownnot guiltyprotestRight2Water