Band of ‘good life’ Ministers once again wasted taxpayers’ dollars

first_imgDear Editor,By definition, an outreach means providing a service or services to people in such areas where they may not have access to such service or services. The recent ‘outreach’ sponsored by the coalition Government which brought various Ministries to the University of Guyana, Berbice Campus at Tain is a misnomer and should be deemed more of a political gimmick and campaign strategy aimed at subsiding the fallout created by the December 21 No-Confidence Motion.Editor, Berbice is not a remote area which is cut off from civilisation whereby the coalition Government is unaware of what is going on a daily basis. Every issue affecting every Ministry is highlighted in the various media including social media. There is a group called Moving Guyana Forward where a multitude of issues are raised and it is a group which has many Ministers and Government officials on it as well as various stakeholders. Furthermore, the Prime Minister’s Regional Office at Port Mourant is very active and would normally receive hundreds of complaints on a monthly basis, resulting in monthly reports being generated and sent to the Prime Minister directly. Therefore, this ‘outreach’ being an attempt to listen to problems and bring speedy resolutions to these problems is absurd, to say the least, and it suffocates our intelligence.Moreover, this coalition saying that they are only effective by listening to peoples’ problems personally and on a one to one basis is simply trying to appease the people to get their votes. It is also an attempt to say that there is a complete breakdown and disconnect between the layers of Government. This is far from the truth since problems affecting the Neighbourhood Democratic Councils (NDCs) are channelled to the Regional Democratic Council (RDC) which is then transferred to the Central Government. Issues such as roads, streets, lights, water, drainage and irrigation are ventilated on numerous occasions but when budgeted for, they never see the light of day at the Central Government level. I have seen that a certain Minister on social media said that the Regional Administration of Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) is in the hands of the PPP and that they are responsible but she failed to acknowledge that the holder of the purse is her Government. The region’s development is stymied by the poor budgetary allocations.It must be noted that the region’s approved Capital Budget for Agriculture for 2018 is a mere $221 million of which $106 million will be used to purchase a bulldozer while $114 million will be transferred to the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority for drainage and irrigation works. It will need a miracle from the Lord for this to adequately provide for a region which depends on agriculture. That is the reason why agriculture is dying a slow death in the region. Furthermore, the NDCs will receive a princely sum of $5 million each and are expected to repair all the streets, provide for drainage and irrigation and garbage disposal. This is the empowerment of NDCs which the coalition boasts about.Editor, the plight and woes of the dismissed sugar workers have been echoing incessantly since 2018 and the cries of anguish fell on deaf ears. Are these Ministers in the coalition blind and deaf to the sufferings of these people? They need jobs, they are living in abject poverty and are unable to send their children to school. They have resorted to literally begging from relatives and friends. The coalition is providing training but where are the jobs? There is a limited market for plantain chips, cook-up rice and dog food! Until now, the privatisation process of the closed estate is still ongoing with no information available as to its status. It would seem that the bidders have all since fled. Many of the dismissed sugar workers were hoping to be re-employed. In addition, the elusive $30 billion bonds are yet to be used for its intended purpose, which is upgrading the remaining estates and the construction of two co-generation plants and production of white sugar. On the other hand, heavily indebted small rice farmers are being forced to stop rice cultivation. Their cries are not being heard by this Government. So why an ‘outreach’?The coalition’s band of ‘good life’ Ministers once again wasted taxpayers’ dollars on an exercise in futility. Their ‘shelf life’ has long expired!Yours sincerely,Haseef YusufRDC CouncillorRegion Sixlast_img read more

‘Healthcare for All Liberians A Necessity’

first_img(L-R): Dr. Francis Kateh, Deputy Health Minister and Chief Medical Officer of Liberia; Dr. Kateh, Montserrado County Health Officer; Dr. Yatta Sackie-Wahpoe; Ms. Shelly Ada Wright, Health Strengthening Specialist, USAID-Liberia; and Alexander Nyahn, Jr., CHESS-Liberia.-Joyce K. Jarwolo, Executive Director, PHILThe Executive Director of Public Health Initiative Liberia (PHIL), Joyce K. Jarwolo, has indicated that the government needs to craft health policies that will enable every Liberian to have access to affordable healthcare services in the country.Jarwolo made the statement yesterday during a program marking the Universal Health Coverage Day, held at a resort in Monrovia. She urged the Liberian government not to focus on reforms that provide an advantage for those in the formal employment sector.It may be recalled that on December 12, 2012, the United Nations unanimously endorsed a historic resolution urging all countries to accelerate progress towards universal access to affordable and quality health care services for all.Quite often, Jarwolo said, health policies, budgets and programs do not prioritize the impact of health benefits for the most vulnerable and marginalized.“We need a national universal health coverage reform that is a critical enabler to social justice and equity, and must be part of a wider effort to realize our right to health. While we agree that UHC will be achieved progressively, we call on governments, global health stakeholders, and donors to commit to progressive universal health care to ensure that those who are currently left behind and the most in need are prioritized without discrimination,” Jarwolo said.According to her, the policies should include those marginalized due to poverty, ethnicity, youth, age, disability, gender, sexuality, religion, migration status, conflict, distance, remoteness and key populations, all of whom are currently denied their full right to access quality health services.Participants at the UHC day celebration held at a local resort in MonroviaShe stressed that quality and affordable healthcare is the foundation for individuals to lead productive and fulfilling lives and for countries to have strong economies.The program included a panel discussion that focused on leveraging momentum to achieve UHC targeting primary healthcare, health financing, and governance.Shelly Ada Wright, Health Strengthening Specialist, USAID-Liberia who served as one of the panelists, said  that while some gains have been made in the health sector over the years, more needs to be done, especially in healthcare financing.Dr. Francis Kateh, Liberia’s Deputy Health Minister and Chief Medical Officer, said Liberia has made some strides in building the country’s health system, and called on the public to help by trusting the system for its services.He warned the public to stop buying medicines “from those selling drugs in buckets,” which is hampering the improvement of universal health.“The key to solving many of the country’s health needs is trust and we hope that people can start trusting the system. Some people prefer to buy drugs from the bucket than going to the clinic for drugs, which are free,” he said.Montserrado County Health Officer Dr. Yatta Sackie-Wahpoe, a panelist, stressed the need for health workers to change their behavior in order to encourage the public to seek healthcare services.“We need to ensure that all services are affordable, which will make the poor and the rich to have the same services. Currently, there is a lack of trust within the country’s health system, which is causing serious problems. We need to train and motivate health workers,” Dr. Sackie-Wahpoe said.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

PM pushes for Justice Holder to recuse self from case

first_imgCarvil Duncan trialPrime Minister Moses Nagamootoo has asked Attorney General Basil Williams to put forward a request for High Court Justice Franklin Holder to recuse himself from the Carvil Duncan case in light of the brewing tension between the two over an incident at the last hearing back in March. Duncan had moved to the court to block the work of a Presidential Tribunal that was set up to determine whether he should be removed from his post as Chairman of the Public Service Commission (PSC) in light of criminal charges proffered against him, one of which has since been dismissed at the Magistrate’s Court.Justice Holder has complained to acting Chancellor Yonette Cummings-Edwards that during the March 23rd hearing of the case, he abruptly walked out of the courtroom as a result of statements made by the Attorney General.He quoted the AG as saying, “I could say what I want to say and however I want to say it, I have always been like that… The last magistrate who (told me what to do) was later found dead.”Justice Holder has judge said in his complaint that he felt disrespected by the Attorney General’s behaviour. He has called for an apology to be proffered him in open court before he would proceed with the case.However, the State’s chief legal advisor is holding out that he is not to be blamed for causing the High Court judge to walk out of the courtroom. He has also insisted that his comment had not been a threat, even though the defence lawyer at the time, Anil Nandlall, has described it as one.In a letter dated May 4, 2017 and addressed to the Attorney General, Prime Minister Nagamootoo raised concerns about having a fair trial in light of the incident.“I am a respondent in the matter at caption, and I am writing you in your capacity as my attorney-at-Law herein. Due to an alleged incident between yourself and Justice Franklyn Holder in his Honour’s court on March 23, 2017 in the above mentioned suit, and His Honour’s subsequent petition to the Honourable Chancellor against the Attorney General on the issue of the alleged incident, I am of the opinion that neither the State nor l will receive fair hearing in the matter…,” the Prime Minister stated.His concern is based on the following grounds outlined in the letter: That the Judge had the power to handle the alleged incident between himself and the State’s Attorney General amicably in court, instead of retiring to his Chambers without the formal rising of the Court; the petition to Madam Chancellor requiring the State’s Attorney General to compulsorily apologise in open Court before continuation of the State’s matter; and forwarding by the Honourable Chancellor of the petition aforesaid to the President, who is also a party to the suit.“Based on all the above mentioned grounds, I am of the opinion that I would be prejudiced in the suit because my attorney is barred from being heard in the matter. In view of the foregoing, therefore, I authorise you to request that the Honourable Mr Justice Holder recuse himself from further hearing the matter.” A copy of the petition was forwarded to both the Chancellor of the Judiciary and Chief Justice, as well as President David Granger.No responseOn Thursday last, the Office of the Chancellor had revealed that despite calling on AG Williams to officially explain his conduct, he is yet to respond.A statement from the Chancellor’s Office said that a copy of Justice Holder’s letter of complaint was sent to Attorney General Williams for him to respond and explain. But, to date, the Attorney General, who has been visibly engaged in ceremonial occasions since the incident, has not responded.“Since Mr Williams holds the executive positions of Attorney General and Minister of Legal Affairs, a copy of Justice Holder’s letter was sent to the Head of State purely as a matter of information and courtesy. No complaint was made to His Excellency,” the statement said. It did, however, announce that the date for continuation of the Carvil Duncan trial has been set as May 8.Meanwhile, the Attorney-General on Friday disclosed that the acting Chancellor never asked him to respond to Justice Holder’s complaint about his conduct. In a brief statement, Williams noted that she must have been “mistaken” if she thought that she had asked him to respond to the judge’s letter.last_img read more

RCMP search for another armed robber

first_imgAt the time of the robbery he was wearing blue jeans, black toque, jacket and running shoes, as well as black sunglasses.At this time the RCMP do not believe Thursday’s robbery is connected to an armbed robbery at Munchies Convience Store and one at Veronica’s Closet, both earlier this week.Police are seeking the public’s help in their search for the suspect, and are taking information assistance calls: at 250-787-8140 and 1-800-222-8477. Photo:  The RCMP have released this photo of the suspect.- Advertisement -The local RCMP has now confirmed it is searching for a suspect, following an armed robbery, shortly after 7:30 last night.It occurred at the Econo Lodge Cold Beer and Wine store, located at 10419 Alaska Road South.Police say a lone male, armed with a retractable knife, picked up a case of beer from the cooler, before he walked around the counter brandishing the knife, and removed all the cash from the cash register.He fled the scene on foot, and was last seen heading west toward 107th street.He’s described as caucasian, about 35 year of age, 5 feet 8 inches tall, with a medium build and a pointed nose.Advertisementlast_img read more

Lead concerns bring third round of toy recalls for Mattel

first_imgNEW YORK (AP) – The Consumer Product Safety Commission, in cooperation with Mattel Inc., announced late Tuesday that it is recalling about 700,000 Chinese-made toys that have excessive amounts of lead paint. The recall covers 675,000 units of various Barbie accessory toys that were manufactured between Sept. 30, 2006, and Aug. 20, 2007. The action also involves 8,900 different toys involving Big World 6-in-I Bongo Band toys from the company’s Fisher-Price brand. Those products were sold nationwide from July 2007 through Aug. 2007. The announcement marks Mattel’s third major recall of Chinese-made toys because of lead paint in a matter of a month. Mattel’s last recall, announced on Aug. 14, covered about 19 million toys worldwide. They included Chinese-made toys that either had excessive amounts of lead paint or had small magnets that could easily be swallowed by children. On Aug. 1, Mattel’s Fisher-Price division said it was recalling 1.5 million preschool toys featuring characters such as Dora the Explorer, Big Bird and Elmo because of lead paint. That action included 967,000 toys sold in the United States between May and August. Lead can cause brain damage when ingested by young children. Under current regulations, children’s products found to have more than .06 percent lead accessible to users are subject to a recall. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!last_img read more

Events calendar

first_imgAdmission is free, and no reservations are required. For more information, call 818-340-9386 or visit www.plattlibrary.org/events. Palmdale The Palmdale City Library’s mystery book group will discuss Erin Hart’s “Haunted Ground” at 7 tonight at the Palmdale City Library, 700 E. Palmdale Blvd. The book follows the investigation of an Irish farmer’s gruesome discovery of the perfectly preserved head of a woman in an ancient peat bog. The event is free. For more information, call 661-267-5600. San Fernando Valley Santa Claus is coming Sunday to the two L.A. Animal Care Centers in the San Fernando Valley. He will be at the West Valley center, 20655 Plummer St. in Chatsworth, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. The Jolly Elf will be at the East Valley center, 14409 Vanowen St., in Van Nuys, 2-4 p.m. Anyone who adopts a pet at this event can have their picture taken with Santa. For more information, see www.laanimalservices.com. For more calendar listings, or to post your own event, see www.valleynews.com.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! Van Nuys The annual Day After Thanksgiving singles mixer and dance will be held from 7:30 p.m. to midnight Friday at the Airtel Plaza Hotel, 7277 Valjean Ave. The event, which is open to the public, is sponsored by the Los Angeles Catholic Alumni Club Singles. All ages are welcome. Most attendees are 35 to 55 years old. Doors will open at 7:30 p.m. Lessons will be given from 8 to 9 p.m., followed by dancing until midnight. Admission is $15 for members, $17 for guests. There is also a parking fee. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREStriving toward a more perfect me: Doug McIntyre You may bring a food item, which will be donated to the Guadalupe Center in Canoga Park and Good Shepherd Church in Los Angeles. For more information, call 818-759-1545 or see www.LACatholicSingles.org. Woodland Hills A program about the opera “La Boheme” will be presented at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Platt Branch Library, 23600 Victory Blvd. This is the second in a series of programs sponsored by the L.A. Opera and the Los Angeles Public Library. It’s hosted by the Friends of the Platt Branch Library. last_img read more

Whistleblowers lose in ruling

first_imgWASHINGTON – In a case with roots in the San Gabriel Valley, the Supreme Court on Tuesday scaled back protections for government workers who blow the whistle on official misconduct. In a victory for the Bush administration, the justices – in a 5-4 ruling in which new Justice Samuel Alito cast the deciding vote – found that 20million public employees do not have free-speech protections for what they say is part of their jobs. Critics predicted the impact of the case involving Los Angeles County prosecutors would be sweeping, from silencing police officers who fear retribution for reporting department corruption, to subduing federal employees who want to reveal problems with government hurricane preparedness or terrorist-related security. Supporters said it will protect governments from lawsuits filed by disgruntled workers pretending to be legitimate whistleblowers. He said a supervisor tried to dissuade him from testifying for the defense. Deputies denied his allegations and said an inquiry made by Industry Station officials didn’t bear out his claims. The warrant was ruled valid. Ceballos had filed a lawsuit claiming he was demoted and denied a promotion for speaking out. Kennedy said if the superiors thought the memo was inflammatory, they had the authority to punish him. In a statement, Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley said the ruling “strikes the proper balance between employees’ First Amendment rights and the need to promote efficiency in the public workplace.” The decision “allows public employers to conduct the people’s business without undue disruption and without turning routine personnel decisions into federal cases,” Cooley said. Stephen Kohn, chairman of the National Whistleblower Center, contended: “The ruling is a victory for every crooked politician in the United States.” Justice David H. Souter’s lengthy dissent sounded like it might have been the majority opinion if moderate Justice Sandra Day O’Connor was still on the court. “Private and public interests in addressing official wrongdoing and threats to health and safety can outweigh the government’s stake in the efficient implementation of policy,” he wrote. Kennedy said government workers “retain the prospect of constitutional protection for their contributions to the civic discourse.” They do not, Kennedy said, have “a right to perform their jobs however they see fit.” Staff Writer Ruby Gonzales contributed to this story.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORE11 theater productions to see in Southern California this week, Dec. 27-Jan. 2Exposing government misconduct is important, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy wrote for the majority. “We reject, however, the notion that the First Amendment shields from discipline the expressions employees make pursuant to their professional duties,” Kennedy said. The ruling overturned an appeals court decision that said Los Angeles County prosecutor Richard Ceballos was constitutionally protected when he wrote a memo questioning whether a county sheriff’s deputy had lied in an August 1999 search warrant affidavit in a stolen vehicle case in Bassett. Ceballos, working out of the DA’s Pomona office, recommended the charges be dismissed against the three defendants and testified for the defense. Tire marks leading from a stolen pickup truck to the back fence on Proctor Avenue was one of the factors used to establish probable cause and get a warrant. Ceballos said tire marks couldn’t be seen along the entire length of a driveway leading to one of the defendants’ property. last_img read more

GAA NEWS: KILCAR HOST ST. MICHAELS THIS WEEKEND IN CHAMPIONSHIP BLOCKBUSTER

first_imgKilcar GAA Notes2014 ChampionshipOur Seniors and Reserves travelled to Glenswilly for the first matches in the 2014 championships and both came away with two great victory’s in front of a large attendance. Many of them our own fans the seniors won by 0-09 to 0-06 and reserves by 1-10 to 1-09 both are back in action this Sunday in Towney against St Michael’s the reserves are on at 1:30pm and seniors at 3pm.Please note there will be traffic restrictions in place due to limited parking at the grounds due to the ongoing works on the new training pitch parking available at the “dye house” we would be grateful if people would take note of this to ease any congestion in Towney on the day.Training Ground DevelopmentOngoing works continue on the new training pitch in Towney ongoing progress can be viewed on our website. UnderageOur Under 13’s are playing Four Masters in the Division 2 Semi-final in Mouncharles this Wednesday at 6pm while our Under 16’s played Bundoran on Saturday last in the first leg of the Championship it finished up a draw 3-07 each, the second leg will played on Monday 6th October at 6pm.Club AppWe have now over 120 members signed up to our FREE mobile app if you would like to sign up just follow these steps to download your free team App for CLG Chill Chartha.1. On your phone or iPad go to the app store 2. Search for Team App 3. Install Team App to your phone 4. Search for CLG Chill Chartha 5. Log in and register for the CLG Chill Chartha Club app. 6. You will receive an email notification when you are added you to the system. LottoThere was no winner of the Club Lotto Jackpot so next week’s Jackpot is €7,300 this week’s numbers were 5, 7, 23 and 26 winners were: €50 Oisin O’Donnell (Coguish) €30 John Francis Doogan (Ballymacfadden) and €20 Mary and Gart McDevitt (Kilbeg). Lotto Plus numbers 2, 4, 13 and 20 there was no winner.BingoClub Bingo winners were €150 Saddy McShane, €100 Ann Maguire, €85 Theresa Gallagher, €80 Brid McCallig and €70 John Cunnincham, Marion Boyle, Carmel Ellis, Ann McGinley, Brendan Keeney and Marie Boyle (Crove). The Jackpot on Sunday is €2,900 on 45 numbers. For the latest news visit our website www.clgchillchartha.com you can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter at facebook.com/CillCharthaGAA and @KilcarGAAWeb: www.clgchillchartha.comFB: www.facebook.com/cillcharthagaaTwitter: www.twitter.com/kilcargaaGAA NEWS: KILCAR HOST ST. MICHAELS THIS WEEKEND IN CHAMPIONSHIP BLOCKBUSTER was last modified: September 30th, 2014 by Mark ForkerShare 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:GAAkilcarNoticesSportlast_img read more

DD Motoring: Brian McDaid recalls the Owencarrow viaduct disaster

first_imgThe year 2020 is nearly upon us and yet if you ask anyone to name the biggest land transport disaster story in Donegal over the last 100 years, most will still recall the Owencarrow viaduct disaster as the saddest story which now is even far beyond living memory.A few years ago following a journey in which I traced, the old route that Lough Swilly Railway made from Derry to Burtonport, I discovered just how many people that still have their own story to tell about the railway. Famous footballer Advertisement One of Letterkenny and Donegal’s most capped Gaelic footballers, John Hannigan made his mark at corner forward with the many club and county teams that he lined out with.In a conversation with John in Mac’s Mace over a cup of coffee, he mentioned that his father worked on the railway.As the conversation continued I was to discover that John Hannigan’s father was the fireman on the footplate of the train on the night of the Owencarrow viaduct disaster.The late John Hannigan, son of the fireman on the train that was blown off the track at the Owencarrow Viaduct Photo Brian McDaid.That day John told me he could tell me the story of that night but his father could tell me the story better. Advertisement His plan that day was to locate an old B.B.C. recording of his father which his family had somewhere and to sit down someday and the both of us would listen to it and John would explain it to me so we could put the recording down on paper.Sadly them plans were never to come to pass because John died suddenly in 2014.Many a day since passing the viaduct over these last years I have often thought of that missed opportunity to document a first-hand account of what happened on that cold winters night on the top of that remote viaduct on the 29th January in 1925.Working on a completely different project this week for the forthcoming Christmas annual, I staggered across a story that I never thought I would see.It was in one of the very first Letterkenny Christmas Annuals published by the Letterkenny Community Centre. It was a first-hand account of that fireman on that train that night. John Hannigan was interviewed before Christmas in 1984 to coincide with the 60th anniversary of the rail disaster that following January in 1985.34 years on, and with kind permission of the editor back in 1984 and still in the seat, Jim Lynch has let us share their first-hand account by fireman John Hannigan of that tragic train journey from Derry to Burtonport which ended in the storm on the top of the Owencarrow viaduct.The famous footplate man – Interview in 1984A life on the railway was his first choice and he never regretted it. After over 60 years with the ‘Swilly’ he is now in his retirement and fond of recalling the exciting, pleasant and sometimes saddening events of a very full life which took him as a driver and a fireman over the whole railway system.Most poignant memory is of that fatal accident at the Owencarrow viaduct 60 years ago this January.The high winds, A sudden jolt on the permanent way, the derailment of a carriage through the roof of which went below to die.A crew that were sent out form Pennyburn Station in Derry to help with the recovery of the Lough Swilly Carriages carriages at the Owen Carrow Disaster.John Hannigan Senior of the High Road, Letterkenny was born near Fahan, where his father James manned a busy railway junction. John was fascinated by the work of his father and as a schoolboy, he made up his mind that he wanted to work on the railway.On the 7th of August 1914, his name went on to the staff list. He worked with his father for a while learning how to marshal the rail traffic for 12 shillings a week. John, an ambitious pupil made no mistakes.Then came a chance to work on night-shift in Derry for 14 shillings which were big money then for a young lad.The mighty engines which hauled wagons and carriages amazed him and he became an engine mechanic in Buncrana.Then in 1916 John was promoted to the position of permanent fireman and travelled on trains all over Innishowen to Letterkenny and as far as Burtonport.Fireman on the engine of the Owencarrow Viaduct disaster John Hannigan who was interviewed in 1984 about the night that train was blown off the tracks.Then after years of efficient service in the footplate, he realised his youthful ambition and was promoted to the position of driver in 1926.“The duty hours were irregular, sometimes from 6am to 8.30pm and work on Sundays too. Many a winter night I pulled out of Pennyburn Station in Derry around five o’clock to head for Burtonport, but we thought nothing of that in the days”.John is the only man around now who can tell of the viaduct disaster at the Owencarrow, near Cresslough with the loss of several lives on Friday night, the 28th of January, 1925.“We left Derry that evening around 5.15pm, we had two wagons of bread next to the engine.“They were sent out from Derry by Stevensons and Brewsters Bakeries after that was three carriages, a first, a second and a third class, behind that were six wagons of general merchandise and the guards’ van at the end.“Neilly Boyle was in charge as guardsmen who was from Burtonport, who later was a conductor on the buses.”Change in LetterkennyAt Letterkenny, we took off six wagons and replaced them with other wagons which were carting perusable goods. I remember it was the No 14 engine, it weighed 31 tons an 11 cwt.At Kilmacrennan Station the wind was starting to blow hard we then knew it was really stormy. Bob Mc Guinness was the train driver and we consulted about the state of the weather- if it would be safe to go ahead.“I had often gone over the viaduct in a smaller engine. We decided to proceed. Bob slowed down to a snails pace and as we crossed the bridge we did not think that the storm was all that bad.“We were nearly at the end of the viaduct when it all happened and quite suddenly. The carriage behind the two bread wagons was raised up on the line, it was like a hump on its back.“It then fell against the parapet and the roof was smashed, two passengers were thrown out, Phil Boyle was killed, his wife was injured and died afterwards.“A Mrs Mulligan also lost her life, they had fallen through the roof and into the river below.“Another man Andy Doogan was found dead near the viaduct, he must have also been on the train.”“The wind increasing in strength with the passing minutes the engine crew were faced with a frightening dilemma.“It was dark a the howl of the gale made it hard for voices to be heard’John’s account goes on “We managed to stumble across the bridge to the end of the train to free Neilly Boyle jammed against the bridge railing, then I went the two miles to Cresslough Station for help. And between running, walking and falling I finally made it.“On the way, I called at the homes of the two-level crossing men and brought them with me. We told John Gallagher the Station Master what had happened.“Next we alerted the local guards and doctors. I got a lift back to the scene. It was about quarter to eight. A young priest, Fr. Gallagher was attending to the dead and injured.“The news had spread and a large crowd began to gather.“It was a very sad and confusing scene with everyone working the best the could with those who were injured or in shock, indeed we were very shocked ourselves”.Pennyburn Station sent out the manager Mr. Hunt, Mr Napier and a party of workmen to clear the line. They took the engine on to Cresslough and stayed by the fireside to morning.The old 35 year old Christmas Annual which included the first hand account of John Hannigan night at the Owwencarrow viaduct disaster.Bob Mc Guinness and Neilly Boyle have long passed away; it has been left to John to recall what was the most unforgettable happening in his long association with the Swilly Railway, John drove goods train daily between Letterkenny and Derry after that.The railway sadly came to an end but John was kept on with the garage staff until the 18th of April in 1975.The demise of the railway was a bitter blow for John and his late brother Leo also a fireman.Between the people and their families who worked on the railway, there was a close and co-operative camaraderie.Serving their employers and the public was the paramour concern trouble was too great to ensure that bring done.Most rail employees belonged to families who had served the company earlier.61 years with the SwillyJohn Hannigan was 85 when he gave that interview a few years before he passed away in 1987.He born in 1899 he joined the staff of Lough Swilly just 15 years old, he was just 26 the night the train left the rails in the storm, who both helped his fellow workmates to safety and also made the two-mile journey on foot in complete darkness to raise the alarm and look for help.He was to witness the end of the Burtonport extension the Carndonagh extension lines in the 40’s and complete end of the Lough Swilly Railway in 1953.He worked on after the railway closed in the garage at the Swilly Bus station in Letterkenny to 1975 notching up 61 years of service with the transport system history in a Donegal, his children shared in the nursing of Pop Hannigan as they affectional knew him in his final years. “cuttie” was a greeting pop used a lot.To his extended family passing away in 1987 aged 88.If the late Miah Deeney, also son of a train driver, Jimmy Deeny hadn’t held on to this old Christmas annual we never would have found the uncredited interview of John Hannigan (possibly written by Niall McGinley, a son of Dr. Mc Ginley who both attended the scene on the night of the disaster and also was the County Corner who conducted in inquest later).We wouldn’t have be able to piece together this story and rekindled the memory of that famous fireman on the footplate, John Hannigan from 1925 and with the help of his family of that famous corner forward, his son the late John Hannigan, his wife Claire, grandson Damien, (home on holidays from San Francisco) and grandson Shaun called after his grandfather John, son of the late Seamus Hannigan Iona Rd. who have all helped to describe that Fireman John Hannigan to put this story of that tragic night at the Owencarrow Viaduct together.DD Motoring: Brian McDaid recalls the Owencarrow viaduct disaster was last modified: November 13th, 2019 by Brian McDaidShare 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)last_img read more

Giants, Pence gearing up for sentimental weekend at AT&T Park

first_imgSAN FRANCISCO–In a ballpark across the country, a stadium located more than 3,000 miles from San Francisco, the New York Mets are preparing to send off one of the franchise’s legends.The captain, David Wright, will start the final game of his major league career Saturday in what’s expected to be an emotional farewell.Wright, 35, hasn’t played for the Mets since 2016. His contract runs through 2020, but this is the end.It’s a fate no athlete ever wants to accept. It’s a fate one of Wright’s …last_img