VP Taylor Blamed for Confusion in Bong

first_imgVP Taylor (4th from right with hands crossed) poses with local officialsCitizens demand that she apologize and desistSeveral Bong County citizens have blamed Vice President Jewel Howard Taylor for the confusion in the county because of statements attributed to her. The citizens condemned the Vice President’s statements and called on her to return home to make an open apology to the people.Some of the citizens, who spoke on the community radio station’s Saturday morning phone-in program on June 2, claimed that the VP’s recent statement threatening the dismissal of local officials who will not join the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) has the propensity to further divide the locals and stir up confusion in the minds of their leadership.The citizens made the statements on several radio talk shows like the Kwatekeh, “Open Platform, which is Radio Gbarnga Rendezvous and the Super Bongese Morning Show.Recently, VP Taylor, who served as Senator for 12 years, while installing local officials into their respective offices in Gbarnga, said it is impossible for the government to work with people with whom she does not share the same political ideology.“The Bible says how can two walk together if they don’t agree. For us to agree, we must be on the same side, so if you think you can’t make it, tell us and we’ll find somebody else,” the VP warned the local leadership. “If any chief wants to see me, you have to get to Representative Marvin Cole and the Superintendent of Bong County, Madam Esther Walker. If you don’t get to them and approve your problem, please don’t come to me,” the Vice President told the inducted officials.“I am not scared of anybody, only God and the President of Liberia, so if you feel you will not work with us, you’ll be replaced,” Madam Taylor informed the local officials. The Vice President, who is known for making controversial statements, said similar actions were taken during the Unity Party regime when people were made to join the ruling establishment at the time.Barely a week following the VP’s threat, some of the citizens have raised objections to her statements which they said were causing further confusion in the county, adding, “the Vice President is the highest government official there, and should therefore be the one to take the lead to reconcile, but not to make these kinds of declarations. It scares us as citizens,” each of the callers emphasized.The citizens said it was unfortunate that anyone in the county who holds a contrary position to the ruling Coalition of Democratic Change (CDC)  were being subjected to intimidation and harassment with the use of the coercive apparatus of the state.“Most of the people who worked with the local government have been removed from their posts by Electoral District #3 Representative Josiah Marvin Cole, and replaced by CDC partisans, a situation that is creating bad blood among the citizens” the talk show callers stated.Jackson Quianbian, a supporter of the former ruling Unity Party, who opposed Rep. Cole’s election in 2017, was replaced by the secretary-general of the CDC in Bong, Sayblee Weyea as Labor Commissioner, while Quianbian’s Deputy, William Summorward, chairman of the People’s Unification Party (PUP), was replaced by C. Tarwoe Walonfa, a fanatic of Rep. Cole.A week ago, on the recommendation of Rep. Cole, the County Education Officer, Samuel Koenig, was replaced by James Zuannah, a staunch supporter of the CDC in the county.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

The Rees Hotel Queenstown achieves rare dual Qualmark Gold

first_imgThe Rees Hotel Queenstown Achieves Rare Dual Qualmark Gold Second Year RunningThe Rees Hotel Queenstown achieves rare dual Qualmark GoldTwo of the tourism sector’s highest official marks of quality, the ‘Qualmark 5 Star Hotel and Gold Tourism Business Sustainability Award’ have been achieved for the second year running by The Rees Hotel, Luxury Apartments & Lakeside Residences.It’s the first time the independently owned luxury operator has been assessed across all three of its different accommodation offerings. Situated overlooking Lake Wakatipu, the property has 60 hotel rooms, 90 apartments and 5 brand new private lakeside residences that opened in December 2017.The Rees is one of only 5 hotels amongst 900 accommodation providers in New Zealand to receive both awards – 5 Star and Gold Sustainability certification, that encompasses the triple bottom line (social, environmental and financial performance). According to Qualmark only ten percent of total Qualmark license holders (1837 internationally ready tourism businesses) have ever received Gold Status.A year ago the tourism rating system received a rigorous makeover after being considerably upgraded. Back then The Rees was one of only two hotels in the South Island that won the gold seal of approval signifying it met the standard for reaching the most high-quality experience New Zealand has to offer.After being benchmarked twelve months later for best practice against all other top hotel operators across the country, the Gold Qualmark sustainability award is particularly satisfying for The Rees CEO, Mark Rose.He believes it’s an “important tool from a very relevant organisation that ensures our New Zealand offerings are world class, safe and sustainable”.The Rees team he says have consciously focused on being responsible operators through leaving a “light footprint” through many staff-initiated actions that both reduce the impact on the natural environment and preserve it.“This Gold status underlines our total commitment to our environment, for both our visitors and the generations to follow us – we all need to do whatever we can to protect our pristine country” Rose says.“Being audited by an independent assessor who is able to compare us with the best hotels across New Zealand is such an important tool. Every day we put a huge amount of effort in to keep The Rees in the best condition with the most up to date offerings and services – so to be officially recognised with a 5 Star rating is terrific” says Rose.The Rees Lakeside ResidencesDuring peak season, while running at high occupancy The Rees was subjected to an on-site assessment and document audit by Amanda Cushen, a Tourism Business Advisor at Qualmark New Zealand.In her report, she rated The Rees as being at the forefront of the industry leading by example and continuously improving noting “excellent examples of robust systems and procedures in place that are underpinned by documented processes that continue to add value”.Using an expansive brief, Cushen scored The Rees performance across a wide range of areas such as; operational sustainability practices, cultural interpretation and integration, service standards and product knowledge, team culture, health and safety systems, décor and cleanliness.“The Rees within the industry are seen as leaders with some outstanding practices in place so every area is evolving, not just one in particular. Excellent systems are embedded within the business like the Optii housekeeping software that has improved efficiency. It’s also an employer of choice with strong team relationships. It is obvious staff are selected very carefully as they all have a very welcoming and friendly manner. Never complacent, they’re always on the lookout to improve as excellence is a journey, not a destination” she says.A Gold Award recognises the best sustainable tourism businesses in New Zealand, with the delivery of exceptional customer experiences. A Gold Sustainable Award identifies businesses leading the way in making the New Zealand tourism industryaworld class sustainable visitor destination.The Rees polled hundreds of travellers in March about how important sustainable practices were to them. 65 percent said it was “very important” which matches figures released in a global study by Booking.com showing that 65 percent of travellers seek out green accommodation – nearly double that of last year and forty five percent consider themselves a sustainable traveller.The top initiatives travellers’ rated in order of preference in the Rees survey were recycling and paperless communications, followed by recycling towels daily. In its Qualmark Award The Rees was recognised for its many environmental and social practices on-site including Bees at The Rees (the hotel’s apiary operation), native tree planting, electric car charging station, waste management and philanthropic social community commitments.Qualmark was first established in 1997 and is wholly owned by Tourism New Zealand. It is the tourism industry’s official quality assurance organisation for accommodation providers, and an endorsement programme for attractions and leisure activities.The Rees Hotel Queenstown blends chic five-star accommodation with all the comforts of home and the service and facilities of an elite international hotel. Situated on the absolute lakefront, The Rees’ terraced construction delivers complete privacy and showcases panoramic views overlooking Lake Wakatipu and The Remarkables Mountains in Queenstown, New Zealand.Its landmark restaurant is the True South Dining Room. Source = The Rees Hotel Queenstownlast_img read more