Leigh-Sherman College Reopens in Paynesville

By Alva Mulbah Wolokolie

 

Leigh-Sherman Community College, a pioneering institution in the field of secretarial science has officially re-opened its new campus in Paynesville City, outside Monrovia.

From its inception about 38 years ago, the school has been grounded in a vision of excellence, training and placing over five thousands administrative professionals in both the private and public sector.

The school has been granted accreditation by the University of Liberia, the University of Ghana, Lagon and the United Methodist University. The college also has a sister-relationship with the Sinclair Community College in the USA.

Mrs. Theresa Leigh-Sherman, President of the college told the audience during the opening of the new campus on Friday, April 25, 2014, that the school was relocated as a result of a survey conducted which unveiled that 80% of the students’ populace lived out of Monrovia.

According to her, executives of the school and planning committee members embarked on the new campus project about three years ago and with the support of friends, business entities including the banking sectors, the dream to have a new campus has become a reality today.

Mrs. Leigh-Sherman anticipates constructing a palava hut, a student center and a library as phase two of her project. She however lauded all planning committee members chaired by V. Kahn Kennedy and assisted by Marie Leigh Parker as co-chair.

In a special remark before cutting the ribbon of the new campus, Vice President, Joseph N. Boakai, commended the Mrs. Leigh-Sherman and the planning committee members for doing an excellent job and encouraged them to continue what they have already started.

VP Boakai acknowledged that government’s task is enormous and as such it is difficult for everything to be implemented at once by government.

He praised the administration for always producing the best in terms of training and discipline and later encouraged those with upper-hands to begin sponsoring students while the school awaits subsidy (financial assistance) from government.

Leigh-Sherman College Reopens in Paynesville

By Alva Mulbah Wolokolie

 

 

Leigh-Sherman Community College, a pioneering institution in the field of secretarial science has officially re-opened its new campus in Paynesville City, outside Monrovia.

From its inception about 38 years ago, the school has been grounded in a vision of excellence, training and placing over five thousands administrative professionals in both the private and public sector.

The school has been granted accreditation by the University of Liberia, the University of Ghana, Lagon and the United Methodist University. The college also has a sister-relationship with the Sinclair Community College in the USA.

Mrs. Theresa Leigh-Sherman, President of the college told the audience during the opening of the new campus on Friday, April 25, 2014, that the school was relocated as a result of a survey conducted which unveiled that 80% of the students’ populace lived out of Monrovia.

According to her, executives of the school and planning committee members embarked on the new campus project about three years ago and with the support of friends, business entities including the banking sectors, the dream to have a new campus has become a reality today.

Mrs. Leigh-Sherman anticipates constructing a palava hut, a student center and a library as phase two of her project. She however lauded all planning committee members chaired by V. Kahn Kennedy and assisted by Marie Leigh Parker as co-chair.

In a special remark before cutting the ribbon of the new campus, Vice President, Joseph N. Boakai, commended the Mrs. Leigh-Sherman and the planning committee members for doing an excellent job and encouraged them to continue what they have already started.

VP Boakai acknowledged that government’s task is enormous and as such it is difficult for everything to be implemented at once by government.

He praised the administration for always producing the best in terms of training and discipline and later encouraged those with upper-hands to begin sponsoring students while the school awaits subsidy (financial assistance) from government.

Edited-May 1, 2014-FAS   

    

 

 

 

 

 

Taking A Note From The International Jazz Day Held At The American Embassy In Monrovia

                                     By Atty Philip N. Wesseh (PNW)

President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf was among many guests at the American Embassy in Monrovia during the celebration of the International Jazz Day held by the Embassy on Wednesday. Others that graced the occasion were Internal Affairs Minister, Morris Dukuly; Gender Minister, Julia Duncan Cassell; opposition leader, Dr. Togba Nah-Tipoteh; former Liberian Ambassador to America, Nathaniel Barnes; Maritime Commissioner, Biyan Kesselly; Acting Information Minister, Atty Isaac Jackson; AFL Chief of Staff, Daniel Ziankhan; National  Archive Director, Bloh Sayeh;  the Director General of the General  Services  Agency (GSA); workaholic Mary Broh and journalist Charles Snetter, whose radio program is also involved in promoting jazz music.

According to information contained in the official program for the day, it is said that in November 2011, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) officially designated April 30 as International Jazz Day in order to highlight jazz and its diplomatic role of uniting people in all corners of the globe. International Jazz Day is chaired and led by Irma Bokova, UNESCO Director General, and legendary jazz pianist and composer Herbie Hancock, who serves as a UNESCO Ambassador for Intercultural Dialogue and Chairman of the Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz.

The day usually brings together communities, schools, artists, historians, academicians, and jazz enthusiasts all over the world to celebrate and learn about jazz and its roots, future and impact; raise awareness of the need for intellectual dialogue and mutual understanding; and reinforce international cooperation and communication. This international art form is recognized for promoting peace, dialogue among cultures, diversity, and respect for human rights and human dignity; eradicating discrimination; promoting freedom of expression; fostering gender equality; and reinforcing the role of youths in enacting social change.

Additionally, according to the program, International Jazz Day is the culmination of Jazz Appreciation Month, which draws public attention to jazz and its extraordinary heritage throughout April. In December 2012, the United Nations General Assembly formally welcomed the decision by the UNESCO General Conference to proclaim April 30 as International Jazz Day. The United Nations and UNESCO now both recognize International Jazz Day on their official calendars.

During the celebration at the American Embassy in Monrovia, the reputable International Music House Sound crew of venerable or “Old-hand” in the business of music, Amb David Daniels, a man who has received many accolades for promoting music in the country, performed to the admiration of the audience.

In dedicating a special music to President Sirleaf, Amb Daniels spoke of how the “high life” music started from Liberia and was later carried to Ghana and Nigeria. Although the occasion was all about playing jazz music, I was touched and took note of the brief remarks of Amb Daniels on the issue that “HIGHLIFE” music became popular in Ghana many years ago, to an extent that some people believed that it was from Ghana that highlife music originated from.

Frankly, I got to know of this issue many years ago when the BBC reported that ‘highlife’ music started from Liberia and was carried to Ghana by some Kru fishermen. Last Wednesday’s comment by Mr. Daniels only reinforced what I gathered from the BBC before. But as I sat listening to the band religiously,  I began to ponder why we are credited for being the “SARWEE (a Kru word for initiator, originator, pacesetter, or inventor) in many things and regrettably we are still lagging behind, especially so in some of those areas we are credited for being the ”first.”

Recently on similar issue, I wrote an article on the issue of Liberia or Liberians being the first on many issues, as it is with the “highlife” music. In that piece, I said,” If there is any good thing that this country can boast of is the fact that it continues to rank high when it comes to making history.  I stated at the time that this country and some of its citizens have made history to an extent that whenever the issue of being the first comes up. Liberia, in most cases is always the first in many world events.

Emphatically, I said that for this, it is often said that Liberia or Liberians are always the first. The phrase, “always first “came about during the colonial period when this country was declared the ‘First Black’ independent country in Africa in the 1800’s. Besides the issue of independence, a Liberian, Angie Brooks Randolph, became the First Female President of the United Nations General Assembly.

The issue of first about this country and some of its citizens came to serious limelight and prominence when President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf came to power as the “First Democratically Elected Female President of Africa.” Even during the civil conflict, one of the positive things that kept this country’s name high on the public agenda, was the fact that one of its sons, George Weah, now Amb. George Weah, then an international soccer star, became the first black or African player to win the FIFA’s “World Best” player award, which has now been renamed as the FIFA Ballon d’Or.  

In all fairness whenever I ruminate on this issue of Liberia or Liberians being the first, my blood always boils in me to see that despite all these good news, we are still lagging behind in many aspects of life. We were the first black independent country and more importantly, endowed with enormous resources, yet, we are still lagging behind in terms of development. Moreover, we produced the first African as the world best of the year but disappointingly, our sporting programs are yet to make the necessary impact.

On the entertainment side, we started the “highlife’’ music from Liberia, yet we failed to develop and promote it as the Ghanaians and others have done. Many years ago, our music and film industries made impact; presently, we are yet to really develop these industries, thus making our market to be fraught with many foreign films and music. I am not against foreign materials, but equally, we have the talent and skills to also produce local materials for consumption.

Once more, we should not only be bragging about always being the first, we should match this with concrete action to produce the desired results. As a country endowed with resources, we should use them to move the country from backwater to prosperity; at the same time, as a country with talents, and many natural features, let us begin to develop our tourism program to attract many visitors and also contribute to national income. We must always develop our sporting programs. The issue of the war can no longer be an excuse or alibi to the country’s poor sporting program.

As I reflect on Wednesday’s International Jazz Day, all is not lost; we can still correct those mistakes in the past for which we did not develop the “highlife” music. Bravo to Ambassador Malac and her staff for Wednesday’s program that rekindled my desire to inspire Liberians to do some of those things that are necessary to also put this country on the map.

Until we can realize that it would be fruitless to always brag of being the first, when, in fact, we as a nation and people, have not matched this with visible actions to indeed, be speaking of our talents and desire to be counted among well developed countries of the world after more than 160 years of existence, I Rest My Case.

Edited-May 1, 2014-FAS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simeon Freeman Takes Issues With Gov’t

 

   By: Timothy T. Seaklon

 

    Opposition Politician, Simeon Freeman, has called on the Liberia Labour Congress to collaborate with well-meaning parties committed to the process of change to work out a peaceful exit for the Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf’s led government

   “The Labour Congress must collaborate with well-meaning parties committed to the process of change to work out a peaceful exit for this government. We have talked and talked. Our complaints enable further exploitation and consistent exposure to depravation. We must assemble quickly and rewrite Liberia’s history through the Congress,” Mr. Freeman said while delivering the keynote address at yesterday’s observance of World Labour Day.

     Mr. Freeman further said, “We have heard very silly questions from sycophants of the administration seeking to create doubts about the prosperity of a post Sirleaf administration that there might be no proper replacement for this ruler. It is truly embarrassing to say the least that people will think in this fashion.”

    He said at the country’s current rate of progress, Liberia’s past leaders with very tainted characters can be considered an angel and no ruler or leader of Liberia has given up the country’s  resources within nine years like Madam Sirleaf has.

    Mr. Freeman who was the Standard Bearer of the Movement for Progressive Change (MPC) during the 2011 Presidential Election said no ruler or leader of Liberia has exposed Liberia’s young women to prostitution, early childbirth, poor educational institutions, poor health institutions and poor infrastructures like this administration.

  “We live in very difficult times when people are existing and not living. This country has huge human resources with the degree of transformative capacity that this ruler can never know. The time for change is now and not later. The Liberia Labour Congress, the challenge is yours,” Mr. Freeman said.

     On celebration of Labour Day in Liberia, Mr. Freeman said, “In Liberia, we have been beneficiaries of declarations originating from other countries. Through engagement and negotiations, the Liberian government embraced internationally accepted standards of labour practices, but there is a very interesting twist to these adaptations.”

    He said Liberia has long been a country of low employment and high underemployment. He further noted that Liberia is a place of high economic growth but very poor development; a place of increasingly prosperous public officials with fat salaries, whose aspirations and dreams are realized while its people are increasingly hopeless; a place where public schools are miserably equipped while public officials’ children attend foreign or private schools.”

   “This is truly a country of huge inequalities; with 83.9% living on less than $1.25 a day – according to UNICEF. This means, hundreds of thousands of Liberians are unemployed and those with some form of employment are underemployed at a time when Liberia enjoys so much international goodwill,” he said.

  The MPC political leader it has been nine years of consistent complaining and talking and the more Liberians talk; the more the severity of the people’s hopelessness and deprivation; while the governors show less likelihood to change course. “Their prosperity enabled our hopelessness. While we dine with deprivation, they party with prosperity at our expense,” Freeman intimated.

    He said, “The occurrences in Liberia are a global phenomenon and international workers day arouse out of the reluctance of well-meaning men and women, who give their freedom and lives for their ideals. People who chose death over a life of slavery; people who refused to be intimidated by guns and powerful men; people who recognized that a decent wage and proper working conditions would enable them raised up their children in dignity; people who knew all too well human indignity caused by man’s domination of man must be resisted whenever it rears its head”.

   Touching on Liberia’s Maritime program, Mr. Freeman said, “The Maritime’s challenge with about 4000 ships under the Liberian registry, Liberian seafarers remain largely unemployed while the people of Liberia do not benefit from maritime resources, most of which ends up paying for Madam Sirleaf’s public relations campaign and huge, un-audited operating costs of the programme.”
   Mr. Freeman disclosed that LISCR collects more than US$74 million annually though less than $20 million makes it to the national budget and what finally lands in the budget goes back to fund the Maritime Bureau. It is a revenue decapitation exercise. If it is not consumed overseas, what finally survives is consumed by them.

 Turning to what he called outlook and Future, Mr. Freeman said Liberia has become a Wild-Wild West, a gangster’s paradise and a looter’s haven.

 “Only those with access to state resources benefit. Those that are without are damned. When it is your time, get, grab, hire your family or children; attract international attention, mortgage national resources, pay lip service to press freedom, economically suppress and deprive your people, expose them to limited education, provide poor health facilities, spend more on security and dare people to revolt against your style of governance,” Freeman noted.

    “Those who have studied history or been an avid observer of the events of history know all too well that man will always dare to dominate man. It is not the domination of one man by another that is the issue; but the refusal of one man to be dominated by another; the unwillingness of one man or a group of persons to be subjected to slavery and economic deprivation and the reluctance of a people to live in hopelessness want and poor sanitary conditions,” he said.

Edited-May 1, 2014-FAS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

“I Don’t Need Masters Degree, Phd To Represent My People”

…Rep. Zoe Pennue Tells Critics

By Jefferson D.Tweh

Grand Gedeh County Representative, Zoe Emmanuel Pennue, has described himself as a political striker in Grand Gedeh County.

Rep. Pennue said because of his position every good players in the political race are worried about him since he declared his intention to contest the October 14, 2014 Senatorial race.

In an exclusive interview, Rep. Pennue said nothing will stop him from winning the Senatorial seat in Grand Gedeh County, come October 14, 2014 Special Senatorial Election.

The Grand Gedeh County lawmaker averred that those who are begging him not to contest the Senatorial seat in Grand Gedeh County must pray to demons to die, rather than praying to God to increase their ages.

According to Rep. Pennue, he does not need a masters degree or PHD, before his people get safe drinking water and good road network. Pennue said he is not looking at credentials but what he can do to help his people in the county because according to him, he loves his people and cares about their well-being.

“If you think I am a threat in the pending Senatorial race, then go to the United Nations, African Union or Economic Community of West African States and look for job, but I will take the Senatorial seat,” Rep. Pennue told his critics. 

Meanwhile, Rep. Pennue has disclosed that 90% of the young people in the county have encouraged him to contest for the Senatorial seat in his county. The lawmaker concluded that he wants to set a political record in Grand Gedeh County.

Rep. Pennue stated further that if he remains Representative and carries on developmental initiatives in other districts in the county, his colleagues would feel that he is undermining them saying, “Therefore I want to be seen on county level and give help to more districts in the county.

Rep. Pennue said he had lived with his people for several years and knows their needs.

Edited-May 1, 2014-FAS 

 

 

 

 

 

Snowe Decent Work Bill Motion Defeated

By Alva Mulbah Wolokolie

 

After several hours of debate on the Decent Work Bill that has been languishing in the Capitol Building for several years, Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hans Barchue on yesterday, May 1, 2014, broke a tie over a vote that was taken when a motion of reconsideration was filed in by Rep. Edwin Snowe calling for the minimum wage board to set a threshold for the labor force.

Representative Snowe argued that the House Standing Committee on Labor should collaborate with the Minimum Wage Board at Labor Ministry to set a minimum wage for the labor force instead of passing a law, but cross session of lawmakers resisted and argued that the Legislature should be given said authority to do so.

When the debate started, Margibi County Representative, Emmanuel Nuquay, told his colleagues that Rep.  Snowe’s motion and his argument that a threshold should be set a board at Labor Ministry were in “bad faith” and such comment was not in the interest of the Liberian people.

Nuquay explained that the law must be applied without fear or favor and that Rep. Snowe’s motion was self-centered.

He stressed that the Legislature is not ignorant to the plight of the citizenry and that it must make prudent decision that would benefit the nation and its people.

 Nuquay who chaired the House Standing Committee on Ways and Means counter-argument was sustained by some lawmakers including George Mulbah of Bong, Christian Chea of River Gee and  Acarious Gray of Montserrado Counties stressing that the House is made of professionals and must not be reduced to Snowe’s assertion.

He cited India, Sri-Lanka and Pakistan as countries that have set a minimum wage, noting that Liberia was not an exception to said global principle.

However, Representative Edward Karfia of Bong County District #5 filed a motion to conduct the democratic principle voting and it was conducted twice with a tie-ballot with 16 for and 16 against.

Deputy Speaker Barchue who presided over the session was left with the decision to invoke 16.2 of the House Standing Rule which stressed that in the case of tie vote, the presiding should decide the final vote.

Deputy Speaker Barchue indicated that his decision to break the tie was aimed at putting the interest of the Liberian people first.

With the passage of this bill, it means that the House has concurred with the Liberian Senate with US$6 for skill workers and US$4 for unskilled workers.

Edited-May 1, 2014-FAS

 

 

 

 

Gov’t Warns Labour Unions

The Government of Liberia (GOL) through the Ministry of Labor has warned Liberia’s Trade Unions to stop operating from hand-bags but open offices that will make their members to easily reach them.

     Addressing workers yesterday during the celebration of Labor Day at an elaborate program held at the J.B. Mcgill Labor Center in Gardnersville, Liberia’s Labour Minister, Cllr. F. Juah Lawson, said most trade unions risk not being accredited if they cannot open an office but continue to run same from their respective hand bags.

      Minister Lawson said it is important for a Trade Union that is collecting dues from its members to have an office space where they can be reached. She frowned on the behavior and warned that besides not being accredited, drastic action awaits any trade union who does not comply with the order.

     She also disclosed that those Trade Unions that cannot account for funds collected will also have problems with the Ministry of Labor.

   The Labor Minister extended greetings from President Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf to Liberian workers as they celebrated Labor Day noting that the Government of Liberia has put into place several measures aimed at improving the status of Liberian workers.

   Minister Lawson named one of those measures as the Decent Work Bill which was crafted to give Liberians work and improve livelihood.

   The minister who prayed for the act to be passed in its entirety said it is not only designed for the benefit of people working with companies or government but domestic workers as well. “If you have domestic workers, you will have to pay them well in accordance with the bill.

Edited-May 1, 2014-FAS

     

           

 

 

MCSS Matron To Be Buried Tomorrow

Funeral service over the remains of one of the longest serving matrons of the Monrovia Consolidated School System (MCSS), Madam Esther Blaye-Doe of New Kru Town, will take place tomorrow in the Borough of Kru Town.

The body of the late Esther Doe is expected to be removed from the St. Moses Funeral Parlours in Topoe’s Village at 9 a.m. tomorrow and taken to the Guiding Star Temple in the Borough for the service. This will be followed by interment in Caldwell, outside Monrovia.

Meanwhile the family’s quiet hour will be held today at the funeral parlours from 6 p.m. to 7 p.m.

 The deceased was married to the late Christopher Doe, who served the Liberia National Coast Guards for many years. He predeceased her.

She leaves to mourn several children and relatives. The children include Alexander Doyen Doe, of the United Methodist Church; Tetee Jackson, a caterer; Christopher Doe, alias “Ayatolah,” a former basketball player; Florence Doe-Seton, wife of INQUIRER’s former News Editor, Jackson Seton, both of the United States; Othello Nypane, alias “Bobber,” a former footballer and an employee of the Bureau of Immigration and Naturalization (BIN); Lydia Doe, Amos Doe, Elliott Doe, and Helena Doe.

Also, the deceased was the aunt of the Managing Editor of the INQUIRER newspaper, Atty Philip N. Wesseh.

Edited-May 1, 2014-FAS

The late Esther Blaye-Doe

 

 

 

Police Still Hunt Girlfriend “Killer”

Police in Monrovia are still in hot pursuit of a man who allegedly stabbed his 28 year-old girlfriend recently in Monrovia, Police Spokesman Sam Collins has said.

Report says Benedict Wesseh reportedly stabbed his girlfriend, Decontee Fialey, 28, with a scissor in their Lakpazee residence last Tuesday. The remains of Decontee was discovered in their bedroom. Police Spokesman, Sam Collins told The INQUIRER that the incident occurred on Tuesday night when Benedict and Decontee were in bed.

What actually led to the killing of Decontee is yet to be established but sources closed to the two lovers disclosed that the two have been accusing each others on extra sexual affairs  that sometimes led to heavy confusion.

Mr. Collins disclosed that Benedict was the boyfriend of Decontee. She was a student of the African Methodist Episcopal University (AMEU) on Camp Johnson Road in Monrovia. Mr. Collins told this paper that the incident occurred after the AMEZU graduation on Tuesday.

He said the deceased attended the AMEZU graduation ceremony and returned home before she met her untimely demise. He said the Liberia National Police is still in hot pursuit of Mr. Wesseh, and that he Wesseh will be made to face justice.         

edited

 

 

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