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IMF chief visits Nigeria amid decreased oil prices

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first_imgInternational Monetary Fund (IMF) managing director, Christine Lagarde is in Nigeria on a 4-day visit to advise Africa’s largest oil producer on how to recover from the shock of falling oil prices on the international market.The oil price has slid to $37 a barrel, a tough feat for Nigeria where 70% of revenue is realized through oil sales internationally.Lagarde is meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari and newly installed Finance Minister Kemi Adeosun.The Nigerian President recently announced a record budget for 2016. He plans to triple expenditure in a move to help the country adjust to the downturn in oil, which lost almost two-thirds of its value in the last year.Nigeria’s Central Bank has also issued a directive restricting the use of debit and credit cards abroad as a temporary measure to limit the flow of foreign currency out of the country.Nigeria’s currency Naira has also weakened further against the dollar, this on the heels of a forecast that announced a budget deficit of 2.2 trillion naira, about $11-billion.Lagarde will deliver a speech to lawmakers from Nigeria’s National Assembly and will also meet with business leaders during the visit. Also on the agenda for the IMF chief is a meeting with finance ministers from the six member nations of the economic and monetary community of Central Africa – CEMAC – she’ll address hat group on January 8th.last_img read more

Week In Review 5/6-5/10

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first_imgMonday 5/6Borough Mayor Vetoes Additional Funding For KPBSD, Carlee Rizzo Honored For Volunteerism In Washington, D.C., Micciche Tables Cook Inlet Setnet Buyback Bill To Next Year FacebookTwitterEmailPrintFriendly分享The KSRM News Department compiled some of the top stories from this past week. Tuesday 5/7Board Approves Consolidation Of SoHi & SoHi Prep, House Finance Advances Bill Protecting $8 Billion Of Permanent Fund Earnings, Annual River Cleanup Gathers Thousands of Pounds of Trash Wednesday 5/8Bed Tax, It’s Back On The Agenda, Dunleavy Makes Pledge Not To Reduce Education Spending In FY2020center_img Friday 5/10Alaska SeaLife Center Admits Bearded Seal Pup, First Since 2002, House Members Applaud Dunleavy for Education Funding Agreement Thursday 5/9KPBSD Teacher Contract Negotiations Stalled, KMS Bike Program Encourages Students To Get Movinglast_img read more

Its time to end the war on drugs

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first_imgRelated posts:Waging peace in Colombia Top medical experts say we should decriminalize all drugs and maybe go even further Drug traffickers who cooperate with the US government have it pretty good – too good, watchdog says In heroin fight, White House tries to break down walls between public health, police Few question that the “war on drugs” has been costly and ineffective. Inappropriate policies resulting from the war have destroyed countless lives, incarcerated millions of people, fuelled HIV and Hepatitis C epidemics, kept countless other millions from accessing essential pain medicines, and created unfathomable levels of violence and destabilization around the world. The question now is not whether to end the “war on drugs,” but what to replace it with.In a new report entitled “After the Drug Wars,” we and our colleagues at the London School of Economics propose a new global framework: End the “war on drugs” and redirect its considerable resources to supporting the existing U.N. Sustainable Development Goals program, which aims to reduce poverty, fight inequality and injustice, and tackle climate change by 2030. We believe that the current strategies have not worked, and that “development-first, drug-control-second” policies will yield the best results, a view endorsed by five Nobel Prize winners, a plethora of internationally renowned academics, and the president of Colombia.Take the case of Colombia. At a recent conference in Bogotá, President Juan Manuel Santos of Colombia said, “It is time for the world to recognize that the fight against drugs enacted 40 years ago has not been won and that’s because we are doing something wrong.” Colombia would know. They have fought this long and desperate war, at a dreadful cost to their political structures, security services and population. Now that Colombia is on the verge of an historic peace agreement to end the decades-long conflict between the government and left-wing FARC rebels, it also has the opportunity to move beyond the failed strategies of the drug war.Related: Cost of drug war in Costa Rica too high, says former police officerOur plan presents a path to drug peace: Move beyond a singular focus on eradication and repression, towards policies grounded in political and socioeconomic integration. In Colombia, 300,000 people (65,000 households) rely on the illicit trade for their livelihood. The root causes of this reliance are often the same issues addressed by development efforts: chronic poverty and protracted states of insecurity. Address these issues and the drug supply problem becomes far easier to solve.Contrarily, hard line criminal justice and militarized approaches will only exacerbate the problem. Untargeted policing strategies, such as “stop and search” methods, have a disproportionate negative effect on minority ethnic groups and low-level members of the illicit drug market. As decades of experience show, sending in the military to eradicate crops in regions outside the control of the central government, where there is no alternative economic infrastructure for affected households, simply won’t work. These approaches alienate entire communities and regions, and spark unrest that could set back the struggle for peace by decades or more.On the consumption side of the ledger, we need treatment services instead of trying to criminalize all people who use drugs. Unsafe injection practices contribute more than 30 percent of all new positive HIV cases outside of Sub-Saharan Africa. The public health benefits of services such as syringe exchange or Opioid Substitution Therapy cannot be overstated. The right set of policies will be discovered through innovative scientific experimentation, and enforced through strict legal regulation. Uruguay, for example, has de-penalized marijuana use and possession, and implemented a system of growers’ clubs and a state-controlled marijuana dispensary regime. Many other countries look set to follow.In April of this year, U.N. member states will meet for the first U.N. General Assembly Special Session on Drugs since 1998. At the last meeting the international community committed to achieving a “drug free world.” This time it can move into the post “war on drugs” era by affirming a sustainable development approach to drug policy. It can reject the blind pursuit of prohibition and repression in favor of new, rigorously evaluated health, development and human rights based policies that work. That is a clear map leading out of the current global drug war quagmire.Professor Michael Cox is Director of LSE IDEAS. Dr. John Collins is Executive Director of the LSE IDEAS International Drug Policy Project.© 2016, The Mark News, www.themarknews.com. Facebook Commentslast_img read more