News Briefs

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Malibu resident to conduct symphony

Oscar-nominated composer and Malibu resident David Newman will conduct the American Youth Symphony in a tribute to award-winning composer Jerry Goldsmith March 13 at UCLA’s Royce Hall during an afternoon and evening event.

Newman will conduct excerpts from the 1983 film “Under Fire” at the afternoon event. At the evening event, selections of Goldsmith’s music from films such as “Basic Instinct,” “Poltergeist” and “Rudy” will be performed. The afternoon event is at 4 p.m. and the evening event is at 7 p.m., both at UCLA’s Royce Hall, 340 Royce Dr. Reservations are encouraged, www.asymphony.org.

Buzz Aldrin, Stephen Hawking promote ‘unified vision for man’s future in space’

Astronaut Buzz Aldrin and astrophysicist Stephen Hawking met recently to announce their association in an effort to “better mankind’s future in space.”

Aldrin and Hawking explained that their goal was to expand the human presence in space as a unified people, rather than as competing nations.

“Unfolding this vision is imperative to man’s best management of our home planet and also to prepare eventual existence on habitats within the solar system,” the astronaut and astrophysicist announced. “This unified vision will encourage ‘global leadership.’ As nations approach the endeavor jointly, rather than in the competitive playing field of the past, each nation will contribute its own special strengths and resources.”

“I’ve always tremendously admired Stephen Hawking and the impact of his work on increasing our understanding of the universe,” Aldrin said of their recent meeting in Glendale, California. “Our three-hour encounter was of the most wonderful and unusual kind, with a bit of delving into the mysteries of stars.”

Dictator’s son, Malibu resident orders $380 million yacht

Teodorin Obiang, son of Equatorial Guinea’s president and a Malibu homeowner, has commissioned the building of a $380 million yacht, according to the anticorruption group Global Witness. Obiang is the son of Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, the longtime dictator of West Africa’s Equatorial Guinea. He owns a $30 million Malibu home, in addition to luxury cars and other high-end items. Obiang is the agricultural minister of Equatorial Guinea, but he reportedly spends much of his time in Malibu.

Suspicions have arisen about the source of the funds Obiang will use to pay for the luxury yacht. His government salary, which is $6,799 per month, does not seem to easily cover the cost. Considering the known corruption that goes on in many African governments, some speculate that the yacht will be paid for with stolen funds.

The yacht is planned to be 387 feet long, complete with a movie theater, restaurant, bar, pool and a $1.3 million security system, making it the world’s second most expensive boat.

In February 2010, The Malibu Times reported that Obiang had been under investigation by the U.S. Senate for three years. The Senate had been “tracking the allegedly unlawful transfer of millions of foreign dollars through the American financial system,” the article reported. Similar to current speculation, investigators believed that much of Obiang’s funds were coming from corruption within Equatorial Guinea’s government.

In 2009, The Malibu Times reported that his father, along with the leaders of the African countries of Gabon and Congo, was being charged with misuse of public funds in a lawsuit filed by anticorruption groups in France.

Anticorruption group Global Witness has been tracking and investigating Obiang’s business activity for more than a year and has posted details of his lifestyle on its website.

“$380 million is a staggering sum…that a president’s son from such a poor country has ordered this yacht is outrageous extravagance on his part,” Gavin Hayman, director of campaigns at Global Witness, said.

Annual charity run March 12

Pepperdine University’s MBA Challenge for Charity Chapter hosts its seventh annual Run the Waves 5K and Kids Fun Run March 12, the 5K at 9 a.m. and the fun run at 10 a.m. Proceeds from the event go to local charities such as the Children’s Lifesaving Foundation and UCLA Mattel Children’s Hospital. Since 1996, the C4C Organization has raised nearly $5 million for its charities and donates nearly 15,000 hours annually.

Participants meet March 12 in the northernmost parking lot of Zuma Beach at 30000 Pacific Coast Highway. Registration the day of the event begins at 7:15 a.m., $30 for adults and $10 for children. Participants can also register online at Pepperdinec4c.org

Firefighters promote reading

Firefighters from Station 71 will visit Point Dume Marine Science Elementary School March 3, at 1 p.m., as a part of the “Read Across America” program sponsored by the California Teachers Association. Firefighters from throughout Los Angeles County will be visiting schools to promote this year’s theme, “Serve Up a Good Book!”

Applications being accepted for city’s representative to SMMC advisory committee

The Santa Monica Mountains Conservancy (SMMC) allows the City of Malibu to appoint a member to sit on the SMMC advisory committee in order to represent Malibu’s interests. Typically, a councilmember would sit on the committee, but the SMMC meetings are now scheduled for the same times as regular city council meetings, leaving a space open for an individual from Malibu.

The city is accepting applications from individuals interested in the position. Applications are available online at the city’s web site, www.ci.malibu.ca.us. The deadline for application submissions is Wed. March 9 at 4 p.m.