The second major competition of the Manchester Football Association will kick off today in the form of the Magnum/ Captain’s Bakery Major League at the Kirkvine Sports Complex. The first competition – the Brumalia House KO – was completed in the Christmas break with Ricam FC successfully defending their title with a 2-1 win over Hillstars. This year marks the 12th year in which the Manchester Football Association Major League competition has been sponsored by Captain’s Bakery and the second in partnership with Magnum. The day will start with a dress parade beginning at noon. The competing teams are Mile Gully FC, Porus FC, Alligator Pond SG, Comfort FC, Villa United FC, Star Zone Academy and Technical Strikers). Following the dress parade three games will be played. MRPC wishes a safe 2017 for all Federal win three in a row Brown, Renaut, top New Year’s Day road race Following the Christmas break, the South Central Confederation resumes its JB Rum-sponsored Super League for the top teams of St Catherine, Clarendon, Manchester and St Elizabeth. When the competition took its break after three rounds, former National Premier League campaigners Sporting Central Academy held the lead, on goal difference, over the St Elizabeth duo of Black Star and St Bess FC as well as Tru Juice of St Catherine. All four are on seven points. A total of six matches will be played between today and tomorrow. The games on are as are as follows: Today – Zone 1 Blackstars FC vs Dunbeholden FC at New Town Sports Complex Tomorrow St Bess FC vs Downs FC at Lacovia Comm. Centre Rivoli United FC vs New Bowens FC at Monk Street Zone 2 Tomorrow Kempshill FC vs Hillstars FC at Kempshill High School Ricam Academy vs Tru Juice FC at Greenvale Comm. Centre Holland PYC vs Sporting Central Academy FC at Holland Comm. Centre Manchester Major league starts today Federal FC continued their good form in the early season of the FLOW-sponsored St Catherine Major League as they easily defeated Portsmouth 3-0 in a recent game. With the win Federal jumped to nine points from three games and atop Zone A. In other games in the zone Old Harbour edged New Raiders 1-0 to be second on six points, and Watson Grove and Royal Lakes drew 1-1. Over in Zone B Christian Pen also made it three wins in a row as they clipped Dela Vega City 1-0 while Bodles drew 1-1 with Frazsiers Whip. Kirk Brown and Melinda Renaut topped the male and female categories of the Evergrow Garden Old Harbour 5K Road Race. Brown, sponsored by Lifespan, won in 15 minutes and 26.93 seconds, considerably slower than his winning time last year. Melinda Renuart, running unattached, topped the female open category after crossing the finish line in 15th place overall. Her time of 18:41.28 was much faster than 2016 champion and second place finisher St Jago’s Chris-Ann Lewis, who completed the course back then in 19:55.40. Lewis eclipsed her best meet time, logging 19:37.38. Chris-Ann Plummer of Vere Technical was third in 20 minutes and 17 seconds. Veteran Andrew Gutzmore, sponsored by Rainforest Seafoods, lost his over-40 male title to Carlisle Russell who finished 13th overall in 18:09.68. Gutzmore came home in 18:37.90. The New Year’s Day event also saw a bigger turnout than last year, with 103 registered runners participating this time around. South Central Super League resumes today The Manchester Rifle and Pistol Club has issued a release thanking all sponsors, fans, professional shooters and licensed firearm holders who supported its competitions and used its training facility during 2016. In the release signed by its president, Orville Henriques, the club which is based at the Lincoln range near Hatfield and overlooks Spur Tree, states that “MRPC has grown in stature in no small measure to the support of fans, sponsors, professional shooters and firearm holders in Jamaica and abroad”. According to Henriques: “We are a facility that believes in the total family and bases its operation on safety for all.” The release added that the facility intends to be the best for the legal training of firearm holders and an environment where “the highest standards of shooting can be accessed”. The MRPC opened its door earlier this week with a practice match dubbed New Year’s Rumble. Ten shooters took part with Henriques winning ahead of female shooter Sue Ann Henriques and Owen Campbell taking third. The first monthly match will soon be announced. The Club states it will release its year long schedule at that match.
Natural Resources Minister Raphael Trotman on Friday said that Government’s fast tracking of oil production in 2020 is “inextricably linked” with the 55-year-old border controversy with neighbouring Venezuela. He explained that this was neither coincidence nor happenstance.Delivering a presentation at the inaugural Guyana Oil and Gas Law Training Development Conference, the Natural Resources Minister said pushing for first oil in 2020 is a strategic move against the claims by the western neighbour over waters offshore Guyana that are being explored for oil by US oil giant ExxonMobil.The Nicholas Maduro Government had issued a decree late May 2015, claiming most of Guyana’s territorial waters, including the location where the Liza Field is — some 120 miles off Clonbrook-Mahaica. This claim was relayed weeks after Exxon had announced the discovery of oil in commercial quantities.Natural Resources Minister Raphael TrotmanThat decree was subsequently withdrawn after its delineation found itself extending into the Surinamese and Barbadian waters. But according to Minister Trotman, the intension of the neighbouring country was made clear, and so the Coalition Administration had to take actions that would cement its sovereignty over the territory.Against this backdrop, the Natural Resources Minister outlined, it was imperative that Government anchor a company to explore and ultimately produce oil, hence it opted only to “tweak” the 1999 Production Sharing Agreement and fast track oil production, instead of having re-negotiated better benefits, which may have driven away the company.A section of the gathering at the first Oil and Gas Law Conference being held at the Ramada Princess Hotel“Because of the withdrawing of the lines by Venezuela, it was important for Guyana to move production as quickly as possible so that we can assert when we got to Court that production was taking place within the territorial waters of Guyana. That would become an indisputable fact before a Court of Law,” said Minister Trotman.Trotman, a lawyer by profession, went on to argue that if no production is taking place, the location of the well would become a matter for dispute.“So getting to production was strategic, because it had to do with sovereignty,” he asserted.After years of mediation, the United Nations Secretary-General in January announced that the border controversy between the two neighbouring States would be sent to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) for resolution, a decision which the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela has not accepted.In the meantime, ExxonMobil is continuing to meet success in its exploration, making its seventh discovery of “high quality” commercial oil offshore Guyana last month. According to the company, this will help bring Guyana’s production to more than 500,000 barrels per day.To this end, the Natural Resources Minister told the gathering of members from the local legal fraternity on Friday that preparations are already underway to commence oil production in 2020.The two-day conference, organised by the Judiciary and the Guyana Bar Association, saw the attendance of judges, magistrates and attorneys-at-law from around the country, who will be “Exploring the legal framework in oil and gas law”.This event has been dubbed as timely, given the emergence of a local oil and gas sector. In fact, President of the Bar Association, Kamal Ramkarran, noted that the hosting of the conference is the first step that the local legal profession is taking to better understand and learn the legal aspect of the emerging oil and gas industry.“It is our duty to know and understand as much as we can…on what the law is and what it should be. Enhancing our knowledge of how things have worked or not worked elsewhere can only lead to us ensuring that things do work to bring the greatest benefit possible of our natural resources to Guyana and its citizens,” Ramkarran remarked.Meanwhile, acting Chancellor, Justice Yonette Cummings-Edwards, in brief remarks, posited that the legal profession must be proactive in embracing the oil and gas industry.“We, the Bar and Bench, have seen that vision; we’ve seen the need to sharpen our legal skills using the powerful weapon of education… There are various learning theories which provide that conceptual framework to describe how knowledge is absorbed, how it is processed, how it is retained, and how it obtained. But for us, in the legal fraternity, learning is continuous, and we know the benefits of continuing legal education,” she stated.Among the presenters from around the region during the two-day conference was Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Law, UWI St Augustine Campus, Alicia Elias-Roberts. The Guyana-born legal luminary, who has pioneer legal education in oil and gas in the region, is leading the training, which she said is not only timely but relevant to what is currently obtaining in Guyana.“I’ll endeavour over the course of the two days to deliver training based upon my experience…to lay the foundation during this conference about lessons learnt from other hydrocarbon economies, so the agenda is truly aligned to many of the issues facing the energy sector in Guyana…“I cannot overemphasise the long-term implications that our discussions here will have on the future of the energy sector and the economy,” she noted.Elias-Roberts will be assisted during the conference by Senior State Counsel of the Ministry of Energy and Energy Industries in Trinidad and Tobago, Indranie Rampaul-Cheddi.