A B C FOR PEACE

first_imgA-Authority rest solemnly in her buxomB-Bulwark in times of despair and demandsC-Creative the works of her nimble fingersD-Defensive to swag her pebble diamondsE-Eloquently she gingerly dissuade fightersF-Freedom waltz wonderfully under her voiceG-Gender gather in one chant foes to vanquishH-History shall be told of your fight for justiceI-Integrity integrity integrity will propel us aboveJ-J-Jewels of inestimable essence “our people”K-Kith and travelers leeches her soul to breedL-Liberia given for our feet to be free and equalM-Men provoke democracy to bleed peace onlyN-Neighbourliness a statute of life we must holdO-Oyster as we are made fine from rough sandsP-Peace which cannot be purchased we earnedQ-Quintessential her simple quest to excellenceR-Respect for leaders to avert failure tomorrowS-Silence of the sounds of war to queue for ballotT-Tolerance mounts her securely to dine royalsU-Utilitarianism shows a hidden happiness for allV-Velocity for peaceful conclusions tops all othersW-Women wisdom hugs you as our country clothX-X shall not be in our lineage only great LiberiansY-Youthful you own and hold the keys to dignityZ-Zest the verve inspiring lives to rise and shineShare this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Read more…

Cartoon: August 11, 2015

first_imgShare this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img

Read more…

Liberian Designs Star at Baltimore Fashion Week

first_imgLiberian fashion designers were praised for showcasing quality couture that stirred the crowd at the just ended 8th Annual Baltimore Fashion Week. Angie H and Crystal Wonyen, the two Liberian designers that participated in the event, displayed designs that personified their individual styles, ranging from bridal wear to specialty t-shirts to diverse designs. As the Angie H collection swung the runway, it captured the attention of women of all ages, and Angie was bold enough to introduce her exceptional collections. Another Liberian designer that pulled the audience with her amazing designs was Crystal Wonyen.“Liberian designs shown on the runway were the best I ever saw in my fashion career, especially the Angie H dress with the opening. It was elegant,” Sharan Nixon, founder and owner of the Baltimore Fashion week, said.“I had to leave my commentator post on many occasions just to come spy models that were wearing Liberian designs because the crowd was always going viral,” she noted.Ms. Nixon said they did a very good job by mixing their designs together with African fabric. “For me, Liberian fashion is made of quality, it was gorgeous,” she explained.Thrilled by the event, Ms. Nixon said the show created the platform that gives opportunity to designers and Liberian brands to show their collection to the world. She said “I’m glad that skills and talents of the designers were incredible and the audience loved it as I do.”Baltimore Fashion Week is an annual fashion show that creates opportunity for designers to present their collection to buyers, boutique owners, clients, and fashion trendsetters.This year, Fashion events witnessed a large number of new designers and designs that have taken part in numerous international Fashion shows.The event ran from August 11-16, 2015, with 20 designers showcasing their designs. “For this year’s show, we went back to our roots, ranging from site to designers,” Ms. Nixon added. She Nixon appealed to Liberian designers to not change their style but rather improve its mixture.She also emphasized that fashion is whatever is designed for the public in stylish ways that attract the attention of people who love fashion; and Liberians have grasped that concept.Meanwhile, the Founder of Liberia Fashion Marketing Junda Morris Kennedy has congratulated the designers for a job well done.“It brings me such a joy to be able to introduce Liberian fashion to international viewers, especially people from my organization,” she 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

Read more…

Britain’s Bribery Law Could Nail Sable Mining

first_imgBritish Prime Minister David Cameron, has responded to President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s earlier communication requesting the assistance of the UK Government in establishing the veracity and the ramifications of the claims contained in the Global Witness Report against Sable Mining, a London-based company. In what could be a major turning point in the investigations of the Global Witness allegations, Prime Minister Cameron told the Liberian leader that the Government of the United Kingdom has a law – the Bribery Act of 2010 – which makes it a criminal offense for a company to fail to prevent a bribe being paid, regardless of where the crime occurred. The Prime Minister pointed out that he is proud that since 2010, the UK Government has introduced some of the world’s toughest Anti-Corruption legislations, especially on bribery, adding that the Bribery Act of 2010 makes it a criminal offence for a company to fail to prevent a bribe being paid, regardless of where the crime occurred.He acknowledged that President Sirleaf acted promptly in response to the Global Witness Report by establishing a Special Task Force to investigate the allegations and assured that the UK Government is fully committed to working with the Government of Liberia on the investigation. President Sirleaf in her communication to Prime Minister Cameron, mentioned that a British company called Sable, was alleged to have apparently offered or given bribes to some Liberian officials, to the tune of US$950,000, to affect the awarding of a mining concession, and emphasized that the UK’s cooperation and collaboration in resolving the issue will go a long way in launching an effective partnership between the two countries in the monumental battle against the scourge of corruption. She reminded the British Prime Minister that in a case such as the claims made in the Global Witness Report, both the giver and the recipient must face the same processes of interrogation, adding that this was the only way to bring to a halt the endemic corrupt practices that ensnare billions of the world’s people in abject poverty.According to an Executive Mansion release, Prime Minister Cameron expressed gratitude to President Sirleaf for drawing his attention to the allegations made by Global Witness against Sable Mining and agreed that it is vital to work to defeat corruption at all levels.He informed President Sirleaf that he has asked the UK Ambassador to Liberia to discuss the allegations with relevant Liberian authorities in more detail and for information to be passed on to relevant UK law enforcement authorities for further investigation.“Please be assured that the UK stands ready to cooperate with you to tackle corruption wherever it occurs,” he concluded.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Read more…

USAID-funded Market Report Outlines Challenges, Opportunities for MSMEs

first_imgThe United States Agency for International Development funded program Sustainable Marketplace Initiative Liberia (SMI-L) last Friday, February 12 presented its 2015 Market Overview Report in Monrovia.The report which was launched under theme, “Liberian Businesses: the Engines of Economic Growth and Recovery”, was attended by representatives from various government institutions, business and international partners.According to a statement signed by its Communications and Reporting Specialist, Shaina Bauman of Building Markets, the report provides a snapshot of the Liberian economy in 2015, using data collected throughout the year from over 2,000 businesses. The statement further said findings demonstrate the resilience and versatility of MSMEs in post-EVD Liberia. However, MSMEs continue to face the same constraints as before the EVD outbreak: limited access to finance, insufficient capacity, poor infrastructure and low business skills. The USAID-SMI-L statement added that Micro Small Medium Sized Enterprises (MSME) have been bolstered in the past, but in post-EVD Liberia, they are increasingly recognized by the government, development partners and the private sector as the engines of inclusive, sustainable recovery and growth. Understanding the dynamics and trends of MSMEs in 2015 will ensure that policies and programs in 2016 effectively and holistically target Liberian businesses to drive recovery and development.SMI-L produced this report as part of its market research component, which aims to fill information gaps around the Liberian economy, increase buyers’ understanding of the local market and promote the importance of supporting local enterprises.The USAID SMI-L implemented by Building Markets, creates jobs and sustains peace by working across sectors with both large and small companies to support local businesses, build and strengthen local supply chains, and ensure monies spent in Liberia stay in Liberia.In addition to connecting buyers with local businesses, the program maintains an online supplier directory (liberia.buildingmarkets.org) containing profiles of over 3,800 local companies (in twelve counties) and provides training for business owners in bidding procedures, contracting requirements and international standards.Since the program’s inception in March 2012, USAID SMI-L has supported more than 170 local businesses in winning contracts worth over $66 million and enabled businesses to create 2,726 full-time jobs.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Read more…

WAEC Maintains June 27 for 12th Grade Exams

first_imgYesterday the West African Examination Council’s Monrovia office announced June 27 to July 1 as the new schedule to administer this year’s WAEC tests to 12th graders across the country.Dele G. Gboto, WAEC Head of Test Administration, advised all registered 12th graders to remain calm, adding, “Come what may, the set June 27 to July 1 schedule will not be changed for any reason.”Mr. Gboto spoke via mobile phone with the Daily Observer after the newspaper reported unconfirmed claims of deferment of the exam to next year.Similarly, the Ministry of Education (MOE) in collaboration with the WAEC said it is constrained to inform the public that the Liberia Senior High School Certificate Examination (LSHSCE) will be administered from Monday to Friday, June 27 to July 1.“Rumors circulating about the postponement or cancellation of the WAEC exams are untrue and misleading,” MOE said in a release. The ministry said education stakeholders including parents, candidates, school authorities, and the public are advised to adhere to the examination dates, which automatically will remain unchanged.WAEC, the release said, “is very confident of administering the exams from June 27 to July 1 as was previously scheduled.”MOE has also notified all 12th graders that no school administrations or candidates will be charged for the re-run of the exam.MOE further advised that there will be “No collection of flexibility fees; candidates should not be denied their WAEC identification card (ID) number for not paying project fees; candidates are encouraged to abide by all rules and regulations governing the exams.” Yesterday the Daily Observer reported the deferment of this year’s exam to next year. The paper’s report was based on comments WAEC Monrovia office, John Y. Gayvolor, Sr., made via mobile phone with this newspaper on Saturday that his team of administrators is committed to administering the exam, but did not say when the exams would be administered. “We are still keeping to the exam schedule as everything is being done to avoid the reoccurrence of what we just experienced leading to the leakage of the tests,” Mr. Gayvolor told our reporter before hanging up.Up to press time last night, what was not clear was whether WAEC had secured the amount of US$300,000 required to reprint the exams, fueling speculations of the deferment to 2017. The excitement of thousands of 12th graders died down when it was announced that the WAEC examination was cancelled “because test materials have been stolen from their location at the Konola SDA high school campus.”Following the stunning disclosure, the MOE said the new dates are from June 27 to July 1. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Read more…

Liberia’s Oldest Citizen Dies at 153

first_imgLiberia’s oldest woman, who was on July 24, 2016 decorated by President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, has died in Paynesville. Madam Klayonoh Bleaorplue, who was reportedly born on March 7, 1863, during the American Civil War, died on August 2, 2016 at the residence of her relatives in Bernard Farm close to the old Omega Station in Paynesville.According to a senior member of the family, Madam Bleaorplue got ill as a result of a motor accident which occurred near the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, shortly after being decorated by President Sirleaf.Following the honouring ceremony, Madam Bleaorplue started feeling pain in her chest and was rushed to the John F. Kennedy Memorial Hospital in Sinkor.At the JFK Hospital in Monrovia, a family member told the Daily Observer Thursday, Madam Bleaorplue was attended to by doctors and nurses in the Emergency Room (ER).A family member also added that the centenarian was hospitalized for a week and discharged on the 2nd of August and taken home where she quietly passed away at home the same day.The family told the Daily Observer that extensive preparations are underway by prominent Nimba citizens and other individuals to give Madam Bleaorplue a fitting burial soon.Madam Bleaorplue was in early May discovered to be Liberia’s oldest or longest living person by a longevity researcher, the noted Liberian herbalist Kpakae L. Roberts, who has established a research center to conduct research on centenarians in order to establish a Blue Zone area for Liberia.The major purpose of the research is to validate the authenticity of their ages, find out why they hardly ever get sick and the secret of their longevity for the benefit of others.Madam Bleaorplue hailed from Kelley and Dubuzon, between lower Grand Gedeh and Nimba counties. In a brief exclusive interview with Daily Observer last Thursday, a prominent Liberian, Philip Morton Simpson, born during the administration of the late President Edwin J. Barclay, urged the Liberian Government to work out modalities for the placement of Madam Bleaorplue in the Guinness Book of Records as the world’s oldest living person. Such initiative is critically important, Mr. Simpson noted, because it is a distinct credit to Africa and to Liberia in particular, since this oldest African republic was able to produce the world’s oldest living person, far ahead of the Japanese woman that was 117 years on her recent birthday celebrated in Japan.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Read more…

Rule of Law Symposium Turns Dialogue into Actionable Policy

first_imgNAYMOTE executive director Jarwolo: “Establishing respect for the rule of law is fundamental to achieving durable peace in the aftermath of Liberia’s conflict…The Rule of Law Collaborative at the University of South Carolina held a three-day round table symposium recently in Cape Town, South Africa, to examine issues that are related to youth and the rule of law.The Naymote Partners for Democratic Development, a Liberia based research and advocacy organization, was represented by its executive director, Eddie Jarwolo.The event, according to a release, brought together leaders and stakeholders from within the U.S. Government, regional governments, multilateral organizations, NGOs, academia, and the private sector to focus on the specific link between youth and the rule of law in Sub-Saharan Africa.The symposium organized participants into three thematic working groups of Youth and Justice, Youth and the Security Sector, and Youth and the Economy.Working Group A examined issues such as access to justice for youth and rights-based education; Working Group B looked at issues of policing and corrections, as well as youth engagement with security sector institutions; and Working Group C discussed economic opportunity for youth and the role of corruption, among other topics.Each Working Group considered ways in which youth can present opportunities and challenges for rule of law programs, as well as ways in which that area of focus interacts with those of the other two Working Groups.At the end of the symposium, each Working Group presented to the plenary a set of recommendations addressed to governments in the region, international donors including U.S. Government agencies, multilateral and civil society organizations inside and outside the region.JUSTRAC is committed to turning discussion into actionable policy. The Rule of Law Collaborative (JUSTRAC) will publish a Final Report with recommendations from symposium participants.The Rule of Law Collaborative at the University of South Carolina is widely recognized as one of the United States’ leading centers for the study of rule of law and the training of public-and private-sector rule of law personnel.With countries across Sub-Saharan Africa facing crises in their justice systems, the Rule of Law Collaborative at the University of South Carolina offers young people and security sector stakeholders the greatest opportunity and the greatest challenge to development and security.The symposium pointed out that youth can drive economic growth and can serve as a force for innovation and they can also offer support for governance and political reforms.The participants learned that unsettled youth populations could be a destabilizing force in light of increased unemployment levels, increased urbanization, and the potential to challenge state authority.Eddie Jarwolo, NAYMOTE executive director who participated in the symposium, said there is an urgent need to develop programs that foster youth understanding and access to justice and rule of law.He said the drawdown of UNMIL troops in Liberia leaves security gaps in view of social tensions in the run-up to October 2017 presidential and legislative elections due to high levels of unemployment, vulnerability of young people and mixed feelings relating to the implementation of the national code of conduct.Liberia, he said, would need a program that will educate youth on the concept of the rule of law and civic engagement that will integrate schools to reach youth in marginalized communities and establish a police and students’ engagements program to help young people to understand the rule of engagements and the criminal justice system.Mr. Jarwolo said NAYMOTE through the Young Political Leadership School seeks support to start a program to instruct school administrators and students on the rule of law and access to justice, to help young people understand the criminal justice system, the rule of engagements and police and youth relationship.This, he said, will ensure a more inclusive, fair and democratic society as the nation moves towards a critical period of transition from one postwar administration to another.Mr. Jarwolo said establishing respect for the rule of law is fundamental to achieving a durable peace in the aftermath of Liberia’s conflict, the effective protection of human rights, and sustained economic progress and development.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Read more…

EITI Suspends Liberia

first_imgGabriel Nyenkan, President Weah’s choice to head to LEITI SecretariatExtractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI), a global integrity watchdog that promotes the open and accountable management of extractive resources, has suspended Liberia’s membership due to the “country’s failure to publish the EITI report for the fiscal period ending June 2016 within the first week of the July 1, 2018 deadline.”The decision to suspend the Liberia Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (LEITI), which brings the country’s integrity into question and threatens its chances of attracting foreign investors, was reached by the EITI Board on September 4.According to an EITI release, the decision followed a request by the government to extend the reporting deadline set by the EITI Standard.The release quotes the transparency group’s Acting Executive Director, Eddie Rich, as saying that the Board found that Liberia’s request did not meet the criteria for granting an extension.“It is unfortunate that Liberia missed its reporting deadline. We are hoping that this is a temporary setback,” Rich said, adding that EITI encourages the government to consult all the relevant stakeholders and ensure that they are adequately represented in Liberia’s EITI multi-stakeholders group, in accordance with the EITI Standard.”Although Rich assured that the International Secretariat is ready to support Liberia, it is not clear as to what sort of support can help Liberia in this direction.The LEITI has been engulfed with controversies since the CDC-led administration came into power early this year. This stemmed from the “illegal appointment” President George Weah made at that integrity entity.The President, on March 5, 2018, announced former Montserrado County Representative Gabriel Nyenkan as the new head of Secretariat, replacing Konah Karmo, who was appointed by the Multi-Stakeholders Steering Group (MSG) of LEITI in 2014, following a competitive vetting of the applicant.The President’s controversial appointment did not only spark a barrage of criticisms locally, but has also been initially reproached by international stakeholders, with the global anti-graft institution Global Witness (GW) calling for an immediate withdrawal of the nominee.Before Global Witness condemnation, a local civil society group, the Center for Transparency and Accountability (CENTAL), also publicly criticized President Weah’s appointment of Nyenkan as LEITI’s Head of Secretariat.CENTAL’s Executive Director Anderson Miamen said in a press release that the sanctity and credibility of integrity institutions must remain intact or else stakeholders will withdraw their support.“The government, especially President Weah, must do nothing to undermine that, whether directly or indirectly,” Miamen said.He said that the President overstepped the limits of his authority by ascribing to his office unassigned powers; “something which is worrisome and must have no place in the new Liberia.”“The rule of law is a fundamental pillar of our maturing democracy, and such arbitrariness has the propensity to reverse gains made in strengthening governance and the rule of law in the country,” Miamen said.But the President’s office defended his decision, indicating that he did nothing wrong. President Weah defended his action at a news conference recently in Monrovia when he said, “I have broken no law.”The President said he was exercising his constitutional power in making an appointment at the LEITI, as the Liberian Constitution gives him the power to appoint officials of various agencies of the government.However, with the latest development at the LEITI, its parent body, EITI, said with its set standard, the Board will lift the suspension once Liberia’s outstanding Report is endorsed by MSG and published within six months of the deadline (i.e. by December 31, 2018.)The EITI Board said the extension requests had not been endorsed by Liberia’s MSG, as the group has not been reconstituted since the end of its term in October 2017.The Board has, however, called on the government to reconstitute the MSG and revitalize the implementation of the EITI in partnership with industries and civil society organizations.The EITI Board also declined Liberia’s request for an extension of its second validation deadline, noting that the request did not meet the criteria for an extension either.In taking its decision, the Board noted that a reconstituted MSG could take stock of progress, publish the outstanding EITI Report, and consider whether to submit a request to delay the commencement of validation.Liberia was one of the first countries to implement the EITI, and the progress it showed over the years was instrumental in the development of the EITI Standard in 2013. In 2016, Liberia demonstrated that it was making meaningful progress in implementing the standard.It can be recalled that armed police accompanied Mr. Nyenkan to the LEITI office near the Executive Mansion, to ensure that Mr. Karmo hand over to him.The police officers, Nyenkan said, were invited because Karmoh had refused to respect the President’s order as his post was a tenure contract given to him by the MSG.Karmoh was hired by the MSG after a competitive recruitment process involving other Liberians.After the drama at the LEITI offices at the time, the MSG had an emergency meeting and called on President Weah to reconsider his decision, to “enable the entity fully focus on the crucial task at hand before the country’s next validation due in a few months.”In its statement, Global Witness said: “President Weah must immediately withdraw his appointment of Gabriel Nyenkan, allowing Konah Karmo to resume his duties as LEITI Head of Secretariat.”“LEITI’s independence is fundamental to its mandate and for the political credibility of Liberia; it cannot be the playground of political appointments,” said Mr. Simon Clydesdale, Anti-Corruption Campaigner at Global Witness.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Read more…

Rep. Morris Gives Champions Montserrado US$1,000

first_imgMontserrado County District #1 Representative, Lawrence Morris, in group photo with the county teamMontserrado County District #1 Representative Lawrence Morris has congratulated the victorious Montserrado County men’s football team with a donation of whopping US$1,000 as an initial contribution for their splendid performance during the course of the 2017-2018 County Sports Meet.He made the donation on Monday in Bentol City, Montserrado County.An overly excited Morris lauded the technical team and the boys for a job well done as the county has once again proven to be the center of almost everything in the country. He was also glad that the trophy was taken to the county capital where several people had the opportunity to see the trophy.The Representative said that he was proud of the county to have retained the title, which is the most prestigious of the entire tournament. “You promised us that you were going to bring this trophy back and we are very glad that you have lived up to this promise. The people of this great county are proud of you all,” he said.Rep. Morris initially provided LD$50,000 to the team during their camping for the finals and also bought them their full regalia (Montserrado county t-shirts and caps) including the technical team which cost almost US$700.The Lawmaker interacts with the players in Bentol, the county capitalHe promised to consult with the Montserrado County Legislative Caucus to reactivate Scholarship/Academic Program for players to have the opportunity to go to school to have vocational or career training.The technical director of Montserrado County Sports team, Alieu Bah, who received the gesture on behalf of the team, lauded the lawmaker for his numerous supports to the team during the course of the tournament. “You have again proven to be a true leader among your colleagues. You have always been with us since this tournament started and we must appreciate you for this.”Mr. Bah added that the team is prepared to clinch the trophy for the third time, which will be historic when the tournament resumes later this year. He presented the trophy to the District #1 lawmaker who represents the seat of the county capital.Liberia’s premier annual sports jamboree came to an end last Sunday at the Samuel Kayon Doe Sports Complex in Paynesville when Montserrado County again clinched the football title in a similar fashion as the last edition.The champions retained their title with a 2-0 win against one of the tournament’s favorites, Bong County in the presence of soccer legend and the country’s President, George Manneh Weah and his wife who were in the VIP stands.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Read more…