Bridging the gap: The chasm that’s killing Guyana

first_imgEveryone agrees that strategic execution is important, but the disconnect between strategy-making and strategy-execution continues to plague this People’s National Congress (PNC)-dominated Government across all sectors.Irrespective that this 2018 Budget is the biggest ever, what is sorely missing from this document are the ideas that can competently secure optimal value for money. Thus, billions are wasted every year on expenses that have negligible impact on the people: such an overseas travel and accommodation by Ministers to useless trips, like a mercury conference, which the President attended in Switzerland. On many occasions, it appears that the intended beneficiary of the 2017 spending programme in the Public Sector was not the ordinary people, but a PNC/Alliance For Change (AFC) elite political cabal, their friends, and their families, as this small group of under-100 PNC/AFC folks enjoy a good life.In the real world, a nation’s leadership typically drives strategy-making; but from his performance over the last 30 months, we must not expect much from President Granger. Like his predecessor, former President Ramotar, they unfortunately are both unfit and under-skilled for the job at hand.There is now enough evidence to prove that he is incapable of setting the required strategic direction for the nation, and that is why we are seeing so many pageants in the presidential function today; it is all a diversionary tactics to hide Granger’s incompetence.If one were to ask Granger the hard question on the goals and developmental metrics of his Government, it is clear as day he would float. If one were to ask him to define his strategy as a President, he may say, “Taking the Guyanese to the good life”. But what is the good life? And how does he plan to take the people there?You see, unless you can define the mission and lay out the “HOW”, you are nothing but a loser as a CEO; and clearly, this is the role Granger seems to have acquired a “legal transport” over – a political loser. An economy must be project managed; and like him or hate him, this is where Bharrat Jagdeo shone.It is clear as day that President Granger is unaware of the details of the workings of the Public Sector Implementation Programme (PSIP), and this is his fundamental failing. Rather, he has outsourced it to two other gentlemen; Harmon (a lawyer) and Jordan (who calls himself an economist). But clearly, in their competition for power, they have collectively bungled the entire project management process. So, in the final analysis, there is little alignment between the strategy and the required project-based work; and thus the strategy is difficult for the ordinary public servant to understand.If the public servants who have to do the day-to-day detailed implementation are struggling to understand the strategy of the Government, then they are not adequately enabled to proceed appropriately at delivering value and results.The bottom line remains that Granger does not offer adequate clarity to connect the dots between the works the implementers are responsible for executing, and how those relate to the desired strategic outcome. Thus, unless Granger learns his job quickly, this economy is doomed.Today, all we are observing is the prioritisation of the pageantry projects, like repainting State House rather than fixing the productive sectors, like the sugar industry. The praxis for the entire decision-making process under Granger is extremely flawed, because he is spending billions of dollars on projects that will not be generating money, but would be sucking even more money from the economy.My grandmother left me with an elementary skill many moons ago – you must always invest in real estate, and never in fancy, expensive cars. At the London Business School, this principle was confirmed by real evidence, with the professor clarifying why this strategy is important to expand wealth.If one observes this 2018 Budget, it has just under a billion dollars in travel, hotels, and food for the big boys. But what is startling is if one observes the Ramotar years vs the Granger years, one would see exposed the backward mentality of Granger (shine clothes and nice dresses while the ordinary people are put on the breadline on the sugar estate). There is no better explanation of this backward pageantry mentality of Granger than by exposing that he would have spent three and a half times as much as Ramotar on State House over a three-year period, as the table below extracted from the 2018 Budget exposes.It is clear that Granger does not get the fact that “pageantries” do not feed and house the nation. Even Burnham knew better on how to serve the people. Wither Guyana under Granger?last_img read more

Miller looking super for super-G

first_imgThough winless this season, Maier is famous for his resilience, bouncing back from spectacular crashes and a near-fatal motorcycle accident in 2001. Switzerland’s Cuche, fourth in Val Gardena, Italy, was the 1998 Olympic silver medalist. Davis wins ruling: Olympic champion Shani Davis has won his grievance against U.S. Speedskating in a dispute over his failure to wear certain sponsor logos on his racing suit. Davis, who won a gold medal in the 1,000 meters and a silver in the 1,500 in the 2006 Turin Games, was awarded compensation equal to four months of the training stipend provided by U.S. Speedskating. The grievance was filed in 2005, and arbitrator Stephen B. Smith’s decision was announced Thursday. Also: As China prepares for the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, attention has turned to the Winter Games. He Zhenliang, the country’s senior International Olympic Committee member, said China should think about making a bid. The earliest possible bid would be for the 2018 Winter Olympics. The 2010 Winter Olympics will be in Vancouver, British Columbia. The 2014 venue will be selected in July, and the candidates are: Pyeongchang, South Korea; Salzburg, Austria; and Sochi, Russia. … A women’s group criticized Italy’s ski team for excluding Daniela Ceccarelli from the world championships less than three months after she gave birth to her first child. The Italy-based group Telefono Rosa said the exclusion was “an attack on a woman for only one reason – maternity.” Ceccarelli, who won the super-G at the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics, had a baby girl on Nov. 16 and returned to the World Cup ski circuit in mid-January. She has entered four World Cup races this season, with her best finish 17th in a super-G in Cortina d’Ampezzo, Italy, on Jan. 19. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Svindal, the overall World Cup leader, is seeking his first world title. He practically is racing at home, and a large crowd of Norwegian fans is expected to make the trip across the Swedish border. “He comes from a history of overall winners,” Miller said. “He’s super-disciplined. He’s strong and he’s big and he skis in five events. He’s the perfect contender. He’s a guy who could easily walk away from here with four or five medals.” Svindal has shown this course suits him, placing third behind Miller and now-retired American Daron Rahlves in the super-G at last season’s World Cup finals. “Of course I have a chance,” Svindal said. Maier is one of the best super-G skiers in history and practically was unbeatable in the discipline from 1997 to 2001. “Right now, my whole setup, my boots and skis are better than they’ve ever been before,” Miller said. “I feel as comfortable to jump on those as I have ever felt, which is super-important in super-G.” But there are a few good reasons Miller might not repeat – Hermann Maier, Aksel Lund Svindal and Didier Cuche. center_img Everything seems to be going Bode Miller’s way as he prepares to defend his super-G title at the World Championships today in Are, Sweden. The American won the last super-G raced on this course and leads the World Cup discipline standings, winning two of threesuper-G races this season. last_img read more

Freedom Mortgage Resolves FHA Allegations

first_img Freedom Mortgage Corp., is the latest company to resolve claims that it violated the False Claims Act by knowingly originating and underwriting single-family mortgage loans insured by the Federal Housing Administration (FHA) that did not meet the mortgage insurer’s requirements.The U.S. Justice Department announced Friday that New Jersey-based Freedom Mortgage will pay $113 million resolve allegations that it violated the False Claims Act from 2006 to 2011. According to the Justice Department, today’s settlement resolves allegations that Freedom Mortgage “failed to comply with certain FHA origination, underwriting, and quality control requirements.”“It is imperative that mortgage lenders that participate in the FHA insurance program follow the rules and requirements set forth by HUD,” said Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Benjamin C. Mizer, Head of the Justice Department’s Civil Division. “We will continue to work with our partners at HUD, its Office of Inspector General, and U.S. Attorneys around the country to protect homeowners and taxpayers from those who knowingly seek to abuse the FHA program for their own gain.”U.S. Attorney Paul J. Fishman for the District of New Jersey added, “Freedom Mortgage did not properly comply with FHA rules for the mortgages it was generating and did not adequately monitor early payment defaults. It also failed to report to HUD the defaults it did discover, as required by its participation in the program. Today’s settlement recognizes those failures and imposes an appropriate sanction.”Freedom Mortgage was not immediately available to comment at the time of publication of this article.The Department noted that as part of the settlement, Freedom Mortgage Corporation admitted to the following facts:Between Jan. 1, 2006 and Dec. 31, 2011, it certified mortgage loans for FHA insurance that did not meet HUD underwriting requirements and were therefore not eligible for FHA mortgage insurance.Additionally, Freedom Mortgage Corporation did not adhere to FHA’s quality control (QC) requirements. Between 2006 and 2008, Freedom Mortgage Corporation did not share its early payment default (EPD) QC reviews with production and underwriting management, nor did it require responses to its EPD QC findings from its production or underwriting staff.Due to staffing limitations between 2008 and 2010, Freedom Mortgage Corporation did not always perform timely QC reviews or perform audits of all EPD loans, as required by HUD. An EPD is a loan that becomes 60 days past due within the first six months of the loan. The EPD QC reviews that Freedom Mortgage Corporation did perform revealed high defect rates, exceeding 30 percent between 2008 and 2010. Yet, between 2006 and 2011, Freedom Mortgage Corporation did not report a single improperly originated loan to HUD, despite its obligation to do so.Additionally, in 2012, after identifying hundreds of loans that “possibly should have been self-reported to HUD,” it reported only one. As a result of Freedom Mortgage Corporation’s conduct, HUD insured hundreds of loans that were not eligible for FHA mortgage insurance under the DEL program, and that HUD would not otherwise have insured and subsequently incurred substantial losses when it paid insurance claims on the ineligible loans approved by Freedom Mortgage Corporation.Click here to view the full announcement. FHA Freedom Mortgage Origination Underwriting 2016-04-15 Staff Writer Freedom Mortgage Resolves FHA Allegations in Daily Dose, Government, Headlines, Newscenter_img Share April 15, 2016 784 Views last_img read more