Tanzania to purge ‘the homosexual syndicate’

There has been a crackdown on homosexuality since President Magufuli came to power in 2015 GETTY IMAGESThe Tanzanian government has threatened to publish a list of gay men who are allegedly selling sex online. The warning comes as part of a clampdown on homosexuality since the authoritarian President Magufuli came to power in late 2015. Hamisi Kigwangalla, deputy health minister, said that the government was investigating “the homosexuality syndicate” and would prosecute those involved. “I will publish a list of gay people selling their bodies online,” Mr Kigwangalla wrote on Twitter. They will help us find others.”Homosexuals face life imprisonment but the sentence was rarely enforced until Mr Magufuli took office.

February 20, 2017 00:09 UTC

Just because someone snaps their fingers, should investors pile in?

Keen-eyed prospective investors trawling through the prospectus for Snap Inc, the owner of Snapchat, will come across this on page 124: “Our team is kind, smart, and creative. One wonders what the pernickety Wall Street lawyers who scrutinise every line of a prospectus to satisfy themselves of its veracity made of that. Did some poor sap have to wander Snap’s funky offices in Venice, southern California, with a carefully inserted speck of spinach? One wonders, too, what prospective British institutional investors (rather a hardboiled, sceptical lot) will make of it. Evan Spiegel, Snap’s…

February 20, 2017 00:09 UTC

Pressure eases off before budget

A leading forecaster thinks that Philip Hammond will have more room for manoeuvre on tax and spending in his first budget than he might have expected STEFAN ROUSSEAU/Getty ImagesPhilip Hammond’s first budget will be smoothed by lower borrowing requirements and strong growth, allowing him more room to cut taxes or increase spending, according to a leading economic forecaster. Better tax receipts because of high employment were likely to push down public borrowing for the financial year by £3 billion, the EY Item Club suggested. Post-Brexit resilience in the economy, meanwhile, could lead the Office for Budget Responsibility to revise its GDP forecast for this year up from 1.4 per cent to 1.7 per cent, it said. Martin Beck, senior economic adviser to the EY Item Club, said that the continued robustness of the economy meant there was little pressure on the chancellor to increase taxes or cut spending to fill “any fiscal black…

February 20, 2017 00:09 UTC

We don’t need foreign aid money, says Indian envoy

Aid to India is controversial because of its fast-growing economy GETTY IMAGESIndia does not need British foreign aid and has never asked for financial assistance, the country’s new high commissioner has insisted. YK Sinha said that his country was “grateful for any assistance we received in the past or will get in the future. But if it suddenly stopped would it make a huge difference? The comments come as it emerged that Boris Johnson and one of Theresa May’s closest aides are among those pushing for billions of pounds of foreign aid to be diverted to eastern Europe to help secure a better Brexit deal. The proposal has met opposition from officials at the Department for International Development, which believes the plan is illegal because…

February 20, 2017 00:09 UTC

A Mixed Police Record

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February 20, 2017 00:09 UTC



Jail animal abusers for five years, urges charity

The maximum term for animal cruelty is six months in England and Wales, which is the shortest in Europe GETTY IMAGESThe maximum jail sentence for animal cruelty should be increased from six months to five years, campaigners have demanded. The current maximum in England and Wales is the shortest in Europe: abusers can be jailed for up to 12 months in Scotland and five years in Northern Ireland. Battersea Dogs & Cats Home is launching a campaign today for longer jail terms, saying that it is “time for the punishment to fit the crime”. There were public outcries last year at the perceived leniency of the sentences received by animal abusers. Robert Koch, 50, was jailed for six months after admitting beating, choking and stabbing nine puppies at his home in London.

February 20, 2017 00:09 UTC

Baaalmy weather won’t last

The balmy air from the Americas now enveloping Britain pushed temperatures unusually high yesterday. They are set to rise further, reaching 17C (62F) in parts of the southeast today and climbing above 15C as far north as Aberdeen. The brief respite from February’s usually wintry conditions will fade away as the week goes on, with strong winds and some gales forecast from Thursday. The mild weather has been caused by a Caribbean plume which has brought warm air across the Atlantic. Marco Petagna, a Met Office forecaster, said: “There will be a trend for temperatures to slowly come back down…

February 20, 2017 00:09 UTC

Strauss to host dinner for 230 England cricketers

Before becoming a journalist, James, left, appeared in two England Tests ADRIAN MURRELL/ALLSPORT“You don’t get that out of the cupboard too often, do you?” says Andrew Strauss with a chuckle. He is talking about an England blazer, and a dinner tomorrow for which the dress code uniquely states: “Jacket and tie or England blazer if you have one.”He is hoping everyone who can will wear their blazer, even though more recent players have England suits instead, with only the captain having a blazer to use at the toss. Strauss has organised the dinner to salute the stalwarts of English cricket STEVE PASTON/PAThe function? A first ever England Players’ Dinner, with every living England cricketer across the three formats invited (there are 321 surviving England male cricketers apparently). Around 230 people will be present, including 65 England Women cricketers and some captains representing the England disability teams.

February 20, 2017 00:09 UTC

Councils prepare to cut essential services to fund adult social care

The Local Government Association (LGA), which represents councils across the country, said authorities will have to continue cutbacks to essential services to plug growing shortfalls in adult social care. They are allowed to raise council tax by almost 2% in 2017/18 to fund local services and a further 3% specifically for social care. The LGA said 108 councils were considering a 3% social care precept and 39 were looking at a 2% precept for social care. The social care precept raises different amounts of money in different parts of the country. “Social care faces a funding gap of at least £2.6bn by 2020.

February 20, 2017 00:00 UTC

New Zealand startup offers unlimited holiday and profit share to attract workers

A gaming company in New Zealand is luring employees from around the world by offering unlimited paid annual leave, a share in the company’s profits and no set work hours. Dean Hall became famous in international gaming circles for being the lead designer on the popular zombie apocalypse video game DayZ. “So to address that our staff are issued the standard New Zealand annual leave of four weeks, but they can also take unlimited leave in addition to that. “By giving our staff unlimited time to sort out any issues with their homes or personal lives, it means when they do come to work their mind is unburdened and they’re ready to focus,” says Hall. “The flexibility here has made me feel much more relaxed, and it really has made my life easier,” she says.

February 19, 2017 23:48 UTC

Ecuador elections: Lenín Moreno facing runoff as 40% vote looks out of reach

A runoff vote appears likely in Ecuador’s presidential election with Lenín Moreno appearing to fall just short of the 40% required for outright victory over his rightwing rival Guillermo Lasso. A second round is not expected to favour 63-year-old Moreno, say analysts. “In a likely second round Lasso will face the challenge in bringing together all those people who didn’t vote for either one of them,” he added. “There will be a second round and in this round democracy and liberty will win, not just in Ecuador but also in Latin America,” he said. “Our comrade Lenín Moreno has won the hearts of all of us who have a disability,” he said.

February 19, 2017 23:37 UTC

Trump's Sweden comment referred to 'rising crime', White House says

“You look at what’s happening in Germany. You look at what’s happening last night in Sweden,” the president said at a rally in Melbourne, Florida, on Saturday night. Crime rates in Sweden have changed little over the last 10 years, according to the 2016 Swedish Crime Survey. Terror attack? Horowitz also claimed crime “is increasingly significantly in Sweden”, contradicting the survey, and citing rape as an example.

February 19, 2017 22:22 UTC

'Science for the people': researchers challenge Trump outside US conference

'Draconian' Trump gag on scientists could affect legislation, experts warn Read moreAt the AAAS conference, scientists this week have discussed political activism, the psychology of “fake news” , and how to protect climate science from hostile governments. “It’s the first time in my 50-year career that I have seen people speaking up for science at large,” he said. Trump, she said, “not only doesn’t value our institutions, he doesn’t seem to value evidence-based decision making at all. She defended “science that delivers clean, safe drinking water to our faucets, science that’s being taken for granted – and that’s the science that’s being taken under attack.”Economopoulos used the Environmental Protection Agency as an example, criticizing its newly confirmed head, who repeatedly sued the agency in favor of corporations as Oklahoma attorney general . “Throwing more information or more data doesn’t really change minds, whether it’s climate change or vaccines,” she said.

February 19, 2017 21:11 UTC

José Mourinho praises Manchester United’s attitude in Blackburn win

Manchester United’s Zlatan Ibrahimovic comes on to finish off Blackburn Read moreAlthough Blackburn are currently second bottom in the Championship, United were made to work for their victory and Mourinho was pleased with his side’s performance and attitude. Tonight was difficult because Blackburn made it difficult for us. We are going to fight for that, but obviously the League Cup is the one where we have 50% possibility of winning. Step by step.”Mourinho confirmed that David De Gea was rested at Blackburn and that both Rooney and Jones would miss Wednesday’s Europa League game. The Portuguese said he was unsure if Rooney would return to full fitness for the League Cup final against Southampton.

February 19, 2017 20:35 UTC

White House denies reports of Russian contacts amid search to replace Flynn

The Senate committee sent the White House a letter on Saturday, the AP reported, asking federal agencies to preserve communications regarding Russia. As of Sunday, the administration’s search for a new national security adviser looked no closer to being resolved. Priebus, the only administration official on Sunday’s talkshow circuit, denied reports that Harward had opposed Trump’s management of the NSC. Leon Panetta, the former defense secretary and CIA director, told NBC he feared the Trump White House lacked the structure or preparedness for a crisis. “The thing that you worry about a great deal, particularly now with the loss of a national security adviser, you don’t have somebody in that place,” Panetta said.

February 19, 2017 18:56 UTC