“The project symbolises the public-private sector collaboration in combating potential identity crime,” said Home Affairs director-general Mavuso Msimang. “For us this project signifies our stance, as custodians of the South African citizens’ identity, that all necessary steps will be taken to ensure that the integrity of a person’s identity is protected and maintained. The South African Banking Risk Information Centre (Sabric) has entered into a partnership with the Department of Home Affairs that will allow banks in South Africa to conduct online fingerprint verification of bank clients. “We are very excited about the prospects of this unique project as we anticipate that it will assist the banks in reducing application fraud and identity theft,” Sabric CEO Kalyani Pillay said in a statement this week. The first phase of the pilot project was completed in 2009, successfully proving the feasibility of online fingerprint verification of banking clients. The current phase of the project is now looking at the pre-requisites for formally implementing and rolling out access by banks. Successful pilot project 17 March 2010 “Banks have a challenge regarding the authentication of the identity of clients given the scale of fraudulent documents in the country.” “This initiative marks the beginning of wide ranging cooperation in the interests of society.” “We anticipate that the project will help with the prevention of crimes such as falsified facility applications and account takeover fraud,” said Pillay. “The banking industry is grateful to the department for this opportunity.” Hanis holds South African citizens’ ID numbers, fingerprints and photos, equipping the banks with the ability to conduct on-the-spot verification of the fingerprints of a client against the information held in Hanis. In terms of the agreement, the department will allow the banks real time access to the Home Affairs National Identification System (Hanis) for the verification of the identity of prospective and current clients. SAinfo reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material
Meghalaya Assembly Speaker Donkupar Roy passed away on Sunday at a hospital in Gurgaon following a brief illness, officials said. He was 64 years old.Roy, a former Chief Minister of the State, was first admitted to a state-run hospital in Shillong before being referred to the Medanta Hospital in Gurgaon, Haryana, where he was undergoing treatment for the last 10 days, his family members said. His condition deteriorated after suffering multi-organ failure on Sunday afternoon, they said. Prime Minister Narendra Modi has expressed anguish over Roy’s demise, saying he “transformed many lives”.“Anguished by the demise of Dr Donkupar Roy, Speaker of the Meghalaya Assembly and former CM of the state. Passionate about Meghalaya’s progress, he served the state with great diligence and helped transform many lives,” the Prime Minister’s Office tweeted quoting Modi. Meghalaya Chief Minister and National People’s Party (NPP) president Conrad K Sangma too expressed grief over Roy’s passing away.“Deeply saddened by the untimely demise of Speaker of Meghalaya Assembly Dr Donkupar Roy. We have lost a leader, a mentor, who had dedicated his life for the service of the people. May Almighty provide strength to his family in this hour of grief. May his soul RIP,” he tweeted.
An FIR has been filed against senior BJP leader Gopal Bhargava on orders of the Election Commission for allegedly violating the Model Code of Conduct with his remarks on the October 21 bypoll in Madhya Pradesh’s Jhabua Assembly seat, officials said on Tuesday.Mr. Bhargava, who is Leader of the Opposition in the Madhya Pradesh Assembly, on Monday sought to portray the by-election as a “fight between Pakistan and India” and not just a contest between the ruling Congress and the opposition BJP.He asked the electorate in Jhabua to vote for BJP candidate Bhanu Bhuria as he “represents India” and said his rival Congress nominee “represents Pakistan”.Madhya Pradesh’s Chief Electoral Officer V.L. Kantha Rao told PTI on Tuesday that taking cognisance of the remarks, “we directed the district returning officer and collector to file the First Information Report (FIR) in the matter after finding the controversial statement was violation of the model code of conduct.” The collector sent his report and subsequently the FIR was filed late Monday night, he said, adding that the matter was under investigation. Jhabua’s Superintendent of Police Vineet Jain said, based on the report of returning officer Abhay Kharadi, the FIR was lodged against Mr. Bhargava at the district’s Kotwali police station under relevant sections of the IPC and the Representation of the People Act, for violating the Model Code of Conduct.Seeking support for the BJP in tribal-dominated Jhabua, Mr. Bhargava had said on Monday, “I, with faith, can say the country’s respect is at stake right now.”“It is not a fight between two parties. This is an election between India and Pakistan,” he told a gathering. The by-election was necessitated after BJP’s G.S. Damor resigned as the Jhabua MLA after winning the Lok Sabha election from the Ratlam-Jhabua seat earlier this year.
By Varun Singh New Delhi Jun 24 (PTI) Former India athlete and sports activist Ashwini Nachappa today termed ace long jumper Anju Bobby Georges resignation from Kerala Sports Council as “unfortunate” stating that it again proved that there is “more politics in sport than in politics.” “It is very very unfortunate that athletes have to go through this (citing Anjus case). There is more politics in sports than in politics, which should not happen,” Nachappa told PTI during an interaction. “When an athlete takes up a job, what is important is to monitor the progress that he or she makes in that position and there are many athletes who can do wonders in the administrative system. Its not that athletes cannot do it. We are just not given the opportunity and when we are given the opportunity it becomes political and that should not happen. So it is very very unfortunate,” the celebrated athlete of yesteryears commented on the sidelines of a promotional event. Nachappa also lamented on the interference of politicians in running sports federations across India. “We cant do away with it because every federation is run by politicians.” The 1990 Asian Games silver medallist is of the view that drug menace has become rampant across sporting disciplines. “Most athletes are taking it (drugs). Its just a chance that you take and you get caught. But people are taking it across disciplines.” Commenting on the Russian doping scandal she said, “Russian athletes did that but it is sad for the rest of the athletes, who were clean are now being penalized,” she sounded disappointed. Talking about the Clean Sports India initiative and her fight against corruption, Nachappa said,”Its not that easy to kick out something that has been happening for the last 45 years. But I think Clean Sports India, which was launched in 2010 before Commonwealth Games, has brought out many issues that people were not aware of. “Many people went behind bars and I think to a certain extent what we set out to do, we achieved. What we are now setting out to do is getting people, getting sportspersons involved in administrative roles. That is an ongoing process. We are also trying to bring in sports code for which we fought a lot. There needs to be unity among sportspersons,” Nachappa signed off. PTI VRN KHS ATKadvertisement
The year 2016 seems to be the year of the SUV, especially the compact variety. First and foremost Maruti-Suzuki launched the Vitara Brezza, Mahindra launched the NuvoSport and we now have the Honda BR-V.If you look at the market, the Honda goes head to head with the Hyundai Creta and hence it was obvious that we would have it in this comparo. But the NuvoSport is cheaper and at the same time it is a 5+2 seater so we thought of roping it into this comparison test as well. But can the low price give the NuvoSport the edge? Read on.The br-v offers 201mm of ground clearance while the creta offers 190mm and the nuvosport offers 180mm of clearance. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)Let’s start with the newest kid on the block, the Honda BR-V. The BR-V is based on the same platform as the Honda Amaze and the Brio. As far as dimensions go, the BR-V is also the longest SUV in its class measuring in at 4,456mm.The Honda comes with the 1.5-litre i-DTEC engine. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb) When it comes to the looks, the front end does look bold and purposeful. The bold chrome grille up front is flanked by rather raked headlamps and not to forget the large bumper complete with fog lamps. The scuff plate just adds to the SUV aura.However, in profile the BR-V sports a design which is extremely reminiscent of the Mobilio. The only saving grace are the 16-inch wheels and the high 201mm of ground clearance. At the back, the BR-V looks sporty thanks to the large tail lamps. The low loading lip height helps load up the boot easily too. So in all the BR-V does not look like a proper SUV. The NuvoSport seems to be exactly the opposite. It is based on the new generation Scorpio chassis which is a ladder-on-frame design unlike the other two here which are monocoque.advertisementThe Mahindra too offers a 1.5 diesel. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)The NuvoSport also is a far cry from the Quanto where design is concerned, the car it is replacing. The front end sports a bold two tier light unit. The day time lamps sit on top and right below sit the big headlamps. The squarish grille coupled to the big bumper envisage a bold and muscular look. But the moment you see the side profile, it is unmistakably the Quanto. The body ends abruptly though and on the rear door sits the spare wheel. The position of the tail lamps have not changed either.The Creta has the largest engine in this trio. Displacing 1.6-litres it churns out 128bhp making it the most powerful as well. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)The Creta however looks much like a proper SUV. The boxy front end and the big lights give it a smart front end. In profile too things are symmetric. However the ground clearance offered by the Creta is 10mm lower than that of the BR-V at 190mm. The NuvoSport surprisingly has the least at 180mm.The Honda BR-V gets the dash from the new Amaze. However the BR-V is not as feature rich as the others here. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)Stepping inside the BR-V is easy thanks to the low 635mm ingress height. The 500mm seat squab and 610mm seatback make it comfortable for the BR-V’s driver to traverse long distances. The dash comes from the new Amaze launched recently. The design is smart and in sync with other cars in Honda’s portfolio. There are very little panel gaps and thankfully the various attachments fit well. The dash overall is a nice mix of colours and textures which includes aluminium and piano black finishes. The centre console houses the audio system and we are not so happy to report that this is one aspect where Honda could have done better. It is a simple unit which has a small dotmatrix-like display.This is a familiar looking dash. Many design elements carried over from the Quanto. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)Sure it does offer USB, aux and radio apart from Bluetooth connectivity, but we expected more from a car priced this high. The instrument panel also comes from the Amaze and looks good in the white backlight. Information provided is comprehensive too. The BR-V is also very spacious at the back thanks to the fact that designers have resorted to the man maximum machine minimum philosophy.Creta the most upmarket and feature rich in this trio. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)At 1,010mm, the BR-V also offers one of the best headroom in this class. But that is not where things end. The BR-V is the only full-fledged 7-seater in this category. Sure the third row is not very spacious but we appreciate it being there. Adding to the versatility bit are the second and third row seats which can be folded in multiple ways. Quite smart.advertisementThe honda br-v is a proper 7-seater while the mahindra nuvosport is a 5+2. The hyundai creta on the other hand can only take in five. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)The NuvoSport offers a rather familiar dash which comes from the Quanto. The central console is identical and houses a digital readout which informs driver about the gear position, outside temperature etc. Right below that resides the new Kenwood audio system. The touchscreen unit is good and a step in the right direction.BR-V: The BR-V does not get the new age touch screen audio system. Overall it looks tacky but offers bluetooth connectivity. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)BR-V: IP also carried from the Amaze and looks the part apart from being comprehensive. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)However the NuvoSport does not offer the luxury of a reversing camera. The NuvoSport also does not offer a climate control system like the other two here. The instrument panel is mostly analogue and offers plenty of data without being fancy.NuvoSport: The NuvoSport gets a third-party touch screen entertainment module which is well specced. No reversing camera though. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)NuvoSport: The clocks too reminds one of the Quanto. It looks smart and also offers loads of data. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)The steering also gets controls which the Quanto never did. The quality of switchgear has also improved and there is a positive click on most buttons. Thanks to its dimensions, the NuvoSport also feels very spacious. The driving position is also relatively high thanks to the high seat position. The second row is also spacious however ingress is a bit on the higher side. This also means that it is better to use the side steps.Creta: Creta gets a sat nav along with a reversing camera. The clocks on the Creta have started looking old school. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)Creta: The saving grace being the central digital display which looks smart and also offers usable data. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)At the back the NuvoSport has a large and cavernous boot with two jump seats. If you plan not to use them, the middle row seatback can be reclined adding to the comfort factor. But in case the jump seats are in place this option remains invalid. The boot is also not an ideal place to be in especially if two plan to travel together.The BR-V also gets AC vents at the back. BR-V units are more prominent. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)The Creta gets AC vents at the back. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)The Creta though is much like the jack of all trades. The driving position is comfortable and Hyundai is quick to change and upgrade things. As a result, new to the Creta is the audio-nav device which is now a touchscreen unit and also offers Bluetooth connectivity. The Creta also offers a climate control system complete with a single AC vent for the rear passengers. This is a feature which is also available in the BR-V. advertisementSpace is also generous and it is a good mix of comfort and accessibility. The Creta is also the only one here which has a dedicated boot. There are no seat to hamper access. But on the downside, in case you have a seven member group, two of them need to take a cab!Honda BR-V vs Hyundai Creta vs Mahindra NuvoSportFrom the driver’s perch in the BR-V it feels much like being in a slightly raised Mobilio albeit with the new dash from the Amaze. Under the hood in front is the 1.5-litre i-DTEC diesel engine which serves all other Honda cars in India. The BR-V loses out on space with the third row up. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb) On the move one can clearly feel the presence of a lot of torque lower down the rev range. The engine is also rev-happy and in certain cases it demonstrates traits of a petrol. This also means that the slick shifting six-speed manual transmission does not have to be worked much. Adding to this bit is the light clutch which once again makes the BR-V easy to drive in the city. On the highway the BR-V also feels good. One can pull through from low speeds to high speeds without having to shift down thanks to the linear power delivery. When it comes to economy we got some pretty healthy figures. In the city the BR-V delivered over 16kmpl which is damn good. So overall the BR-V scores well in this category.Creta has the best boot but is a five-seater. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)The NuvoSport also demonstrates a new attitude in this all new avatar. The driving position is high and at the same time visibility is good ahead. The motor feels better and refinement levels have gone up marginally too. The engine also revs more freely than before and in spite of its rather heavy kerb weight, 100kmph is achieved in 17.7 seconds. But the NuvoSport feels heavy to drive. You will know that it is a big hulk you are commanding. This is also aided by the heavy steering.NuvoSport gets foldable jump seats (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)On the highway though the NuvoSport is a much better option and offers decent amounts of grip especially when laden. The 1.6-litre engine of the Creta is well tuned and feels refined on the go. It also produces 128bhp and 259Nm of torque which is the best in this category. Start up the Creta and the 1.6-litre CRDi wakes up with a bit of engine clatter but settles down almost instantly. What surprises the most about the car is the engine refinement and NVH levels.The creta has the largest engine and displaces maximum horsepower. the br-v though is the most fuel efficient. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)On the move you can barely hear the engine regardless of the speeds. If you didn’t have prior information you could easily mistake it for a petrol car. It is a testament to the engineering gone into making the engine this refined. It feels like a car from a segment above. The power delivery is smooth and you expect a punch in the head when the torque is to kick in at 1,900rpm but that too is delivered ever so smoothly. It feels like being jabbed by a very polite boxer. The gear changes are effortless and there’s absolutely no hunting around for the cogs. Though it does gain speed rather quickly it also does its best to make it feel as un-dramatic as possible.The Hyundai Creta retains its crown comfortably inspite of being the more expensive option. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb)The BR-V is set up stiff and handles well. But at slow speeds the suspension remains absorbent. The NuvoSport is a big vehicle and it is set up soft thus there’s a lot of body roll around corners. But in the city it’s comfortable to be in. The ride quality on the Creta is quite good but it performs the best at city speeds. It will make an easy job of the highway too but only as long as there’s not too much flicking around involved. VerdictThe NuvoSport has a massive price advantage and adding to it is the fact that the warranty offered by Mahindra is top class. Hence the NuvoSport claws in a lot of points when it comes to the Cost parameter. The Hyundai Creta retains its crown comfortably inspite of being the more expensive option. (Pictures: Nishant Jhamb) The BR-V though gives the Creta a genuine fight. It is comfortable to drive and we liked its agile nature. But it is devoid of features which are found aplenty in the Hyundai Creta. The Creta though is the most expensive here due to the fact that we have taken the top variants of all which in the case of the Creta is the SX (O).While it loses out points when it comes to the price, it does gain brownie points when it comes to safety parameters. So in all the Creta remains to be the best in class here.
Manchester City 4 Tottenham 1: Silva-less City continue to set the gold standard Rob Lancaster Last updated 1 year ago 03:31 12/17/17 Clive Brunskill/Getty Images Manchester City overcame the absence of David Silva to ease to victory over Tottenham at the Etihad Stadium on Saturday. Raheem Sterling scored twice as Manchester City extended their record run of victories in the Premier League to 16 games with an emphatic 4-1 triumph over Tottenham.Despite the talismanic David Silva, who had scored four goals in his past three outings, missing a league game for the first time this season, Pep Guardiola’s all-conquering juggernaut rolled on to move 14 points clear of nearest rivals Manchester United at the top of the table.Ilkay Gundogan’s free header from a corner gave City an early lead before Kevin de Bruyne doubled their advantage with a left-footed drive 20 minutes from time. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player The home side could even afford to see substitute Gabriel Jesus miss a penalty before Sterling bagged a late brace, taking the England international’s tally for the season to 15.Christian Eriksen struck a late consolation but Tottenham, who will drop to seventh if Liverpool avoid defeat at Bournemouth on Sunday, were thoroughly outclassed on the road, meaning they have now claimed just one point from their last five away trips away from Wembley Stadium.The result sees Guardiola equal the best winning streak he oversaw while in charge of Barcelona, though his current crop are still three shy of matching the 19-game run his Bayern Munich squad managed in the 2013-14 Bundesliga campaign. On this form, however, it is hard to see when they will lose again.FT | :large_blue_circle: 4-1 #cityvspursMagnificent. pic.twitter.com/ZgIN0syycb— Manchester City (@ManCity) December 16, 2017Gundogan was the man chosen to fill Silva’s void and he took full advantage with a 14th-minute opener.Tottenham failed to pay any attention to the stand-in at Leroy Sane’s out-swinging corner from the left, allowing the Germany international to drift in unmarked and, stooping down, nod his team in front.That the gap remained at one through to half-time was largely down to two men – Hugo Lloris and Craig Pawson.Tottenham’s busy goalkeeper denied Sergio Aguero, Gundogan and Sane before the break, while the visitors were grateful when Pawson, the referee who awarded Everton a controversial penalty for a push by Liverpool’s Dejan Lovren during last Sunday’s Merseyside derby, failed to spot Danny Rose’s blatant two-handed shove on Eliaquim Mangala.Despite leaving both Harry Kane and Son Heung-min up front, the visitors failed to register a shot on target in an opening half that saw patchy fog descend over the ground.Their attacking vision appeared to be a little clearer despite the conditions after the break, with Kane finally forcing Ederson into a save with a long-range drive that required pushing around the goalkeeper’s right post.55 – Harry Kane’s shot in the 55th minute was Spurs’ first on target in this game; the latest they have attempted their opening shot on target in a Premier League game this season. Quiet.— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) December 16, 2017City, though, demonstrated why their defence deserves as much praise as their high-powered attack this season. They weathered the storm and, as Tottenham were forced to throw bodies forward, capitalised on the counter-attack.Not long after receiving a heavy challenge from Dele Alli that only resulted in a yellow card, De Bruyne grabbed the all-important second goal when lashing the ball beyond Lloris with his left foot.The Belgian was fouled by compatriot Jan Vertonghen to earn City a penalty soon after, only for Gabriel Jesus to send the spot-kick against the woodwork.Sterling failed to convert the rebound too, but could not miss the two late chances that came his way.The England winger first tapped in from a free-flowing move involved Gundogan and Sane, before finishing another devastating City attack from close range.Eriksen had the last word, denying Ederson a clean sheet when his low drive that rather dribbled into the corner of the net, but Tottenham barely celebrated the Dane’s strike, well aware they had been outplayed by the league’s runaway leaders. read more
MONTREAL – Veronique Brouillard says she loves being an auxiliary nurse.But between the constant requests to work overtime, calls that interrupt her vacations, and a heavy and stressful workload, the 36-year-old mother of three said she’s exhausted, stressed — and furious.“We have no life,” she said. “One day off in a week, and they call us four times (asking us) to come in for extra work. I’ve had enough.”She was one of several dozen health care workers who stood on a Montreal street corner on Friday night waving signs and loudly expressing their anger over staff shortages and working conditions that they say are causing them to burn out and are compromising their ability to care for patients.While concerns over nursing shortages and burnout are nothing new in Quebec, the issue has resurfaced just as the province prepares to enter a fall election campaign.Some nurses have taken to social media to vent their frustrations, and the head of a provincial nurses’ union is once again calling on the health minister to lower nurse-to-patient ratios and end the practice of mandatory overtime.A Facebook post by a young nurse named Emilie Ricard was shared over 56,000 times after the woman from the Eastern Townships posted a picture of herself in tears, giving a sarcastic thumbs-up after a night-shift in which she said she had to care for over 70 patients alone.Nancy Bedard, head of the Federation interprofessionnelle de la sante du Quebec, blames government budget cuts for exacerbating a long-standing problem.“They’re always asking us to reorganize, to do more with less,” she said in a phone interview. “We’ve hit a wall, a level where we say we can’t go further.”Brouillard, whose job includes handing out medication and assisting nurses, said the staff shortages in the Monteregie region where she works are so acute that she can no longer take the time to sit down and soothe an agitated patient.“It’s like an assembly line, I distribute my pills, ‘bang, bang, bang,’” she said.Her colleague, Patrice Godbout, said requiring health care workers to do mandatory extra overtime was leaving them exhausted and killing morale.“We have a sword of Damocles over our heads because when we go into work we never know when we’ll leave,” he said at the street-corner protest.“What we want is the chance to heal with dignity, because that’s what we’ve lost in recent years.”Health Minister Gaetan Barrette met with the nurses’ union earlier this month and later expressed a willingness to work with nurses to resolve their concerns.“The nurses have legitimate claims,” he said, adding that “the question of ratios must be revisited and brought up to date.”A second meeting is set for Tuesday.Bedard said she was encouraged by the minister’s openness, and said health-care workers feel, finally, that the province is listening.But she’s warning that she will accept nothing less than concrete action.Melanie Lavoie-Tremblay, a professor of nursing at McGill University, said resolving the issue will take more than just posting new job ads.She said that while nursing schools are full, many new graduates end up leaving the profession or are hesitant to take full-time work because they find the job too stressful or difficult.“When new grads are coming in the workforce there’s a big gap, because they have to face a big acuity of care and they have to learn quickly,” she said.“Because the conditions are hard, it’s difficult for the current staff to support them and work all together.”Lavoie-Tremblay suggested programs be put in place to ensure new nurses receive more support and get a chance to put the things they learned in school into practice.Schedules, she said, should also be made more flexible so that young people concerned with work-life balance don’t have to spend years working nights before being offered a better shift.“If we don’t offer a good position or good working conditions, they will go elsewhere, and that’s a good thing,” she said.
APTN National NewsThis week is the world premiere of a hard-hitting play aimed at raising awareness about the reality of Aboriginal women in Canadian prisons.Jail Baby looks at crime, poverty, violence and how it might affect future generations.APTN’s Shaneen Robinson has a sneak peek.Srobinson@aptn.caTwitter: @shaneenthescene
DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — A massive amusement park in Dubai says it is abandoning plans to build a $454-million Six Flags.DXB Entertainments, which runs Dubai Parks & Resorts, said in a statement filed on Thursday on the local stock market that a planned financial instrument was “no longer available and the Six Flags Dubai project cannot proceed at this time.”Plans for a Six Flags park long have circulated in Dubai.In 2016, Dubai officials say they planned to add the park chain, owned by the Grand Prairie, Texas-based Six Flags Entertainment Corp.The park near the site of Dubai’s 2020 World Expo, or world’s fair, has struggled since opening.Meraas Holding, a firm backed by Dubai’s ruler, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, is the majority-owner of DXB Entertainments.The Associated Press
Aisha Duhulow was stoned to death in a stadium full of spectators in the southern port city of Kismayo on 27 October after authorities found her guilty of adultery.But reports indicate that she had been raped by three men while walking to visit her grandmother in the capital Mogadishu. After the attack, Aisha asked for protection from prosecutors, who in turn accused her of adultery and sentenced her to death.“This is a tragic and deplorable incident,” said Christian Balslev-Olesen, UNICEF Representative for Somalia. “A child was victimized twice – first by the perpetrators of the rape and then by those responsible for administering justice.”According to media reports, Aisha pleaded for her life before she was forced into a hole, buried up to her neck and then pelted with stones by some 50 men until she died in front of more than 1,000 people.UNICEF said that this incident underscores the vulnerability of girls and women in the war-wracked Horn of Africa nation, where it says sexual and gender-based violence is commonplace and gender inequalities persist in access to essential services.“Authorities and institutions of civil society have a role to play in supporting and protecting the rights of every child,” Mr. Balslev-Olesen said, noting that this killing reflects the great effort that must be undertaken to protect the rights of Somali girls and women.“UNICEF is committed to promote the status of females and will continue to work with local authorities and partners to reduce the risks to them through the promotion of girls’ education, HIV prevention and support to services for survivors of all forms of sexual and gender-based violence.” 4 November 2008The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has deplored last week’s stoning to death of a 13-year-old Somali girl who was a victim of rape.