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Liberia

NPA Boss On Effects Of Partial Education

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…Urges MCSS Graduates To Pursuit Quality Education

The Managing Director of the National Port of Authority (NPA) has lectured graduates of the Monrovia Consolidated School System (MCSS) about the negative effects of partial education on a society.

Speaking last Friday on the topic: “Partial Education and Its Effects on Society” Dr. Bill Twehway said “nowadays in our society, there appear to be double-standards when it comes to evoking the true values of education.

It appears that mediocrity in educational pursuit is outpacing the laborious meritocratic path to quality education that was argued and enforced over the years.”

The NPA boss notes with serious indignation and utter reprehension the rapidly eroding principles and values of education in Liberia, noting that principles and values do not change in relations to times.

Citing an example, Dr. Twehway said no one in his or her conscious mind will take a sick patient to a carpenter for medical treatment or take a toddler to pilot a plane full with passengers or place a loaded AK – 47 real rifle in the hands of a child as a graduation gift or choose a functional illiterate to teach, especially senior students going to sit the West African Certificate Exams (WACES) with matriculation at tertiary education at stake.

He said it is easily discernible that 10, 20, 30 or forty years from now, this will never happen because everyone “here can be convinced that these are not good principles to apply in each given condition.

Therefore, it is profoundly farfetched and immeasurably inconceivable that we Liberians will be applauding and rewarding those who have over the years shown serious contempt for education and remained largely impervious to the values of education, even though begging chances were abound.”

The NPA Managing Director observed that half-baked high school dropouts and pseudo high school graduates, who lack basic secondary education, are the emerging and celebrated intellectuals in our society today.

Dr. Twehway: “They speak to every subject matter as authorities, even proffering voodoo economic theories to fix our challenged economy that exist only in utopia.

They are likened to what we Liberians call “jack of all trade but masters of none.” The Latin clause, “nemo dat quod non habet”, puts it more succinctly. It means [Quote] “no one gives what he does not have” [Unquote].

This further means that one cannot exhibit intellectual nudity and spew malnourished arguments under pretense of leveraging genuine prognoses.

It just does not happen because it is not just there, PERIOD! But what are the effects of partial education on society?”

“Merriam – Webster Online Dictionary defines partial as not total or general; incomplete. Dictionary.com defines education as the act or process of imparting or acquiring general knowledge, developing the powers of reasoning and judgment.

Wikipedia also defines education as a process of facilitating learning, or the acquisition of knowledge, skills and values.

Permit me to underscore some key words contained in the aforementioned definitions of education.

Process, reasoning, judgment, skills and values are not isolated terminologies. They have deep meanings.

Process connotes that in order to be seated in here as a graduate you must have started from first period to the final exam, and must have sat and successfully passed school and WACES exams.

That is why there will be inscribed in your diplomas that you have completed “all” of the requirements prescribed by the Ministry of Education, thus certifying that you went through the process to graduate from high school. Your diplomas will not carry “some” but instead “all”.

I cannot imagine any graduate sitting here, who never went to class or took tests but just walked into this beautiful edifice to graduate.”

Interestingly, he said reasoning, judgment, skills and values are all acquired through the process of education, adding “your reasoning about staying in school as opposed to being out and about; your judgment that education provides countless opportunities to better your lives and that of your families’; your skills that can be leveraged for employment possibilities; and values that teach you that hard work pays are all resultant effects of the process of education.”

Dr. Twehway said he views partial education as an education in which there is the absence of depth, and the tenacity to complete the foundational process is nonexistent, saying “in other words, those who have not completed basic secondary education and/or those who do not intend to complete, fall in this category.”

The NPA told the graduates that the effects of partial education can be resoundingly debilitating both to the individual who consciously espouses to this mode of education, and society that receives the good, bad and the ugly.

One of the effects of partial education, according to him is the perambulating of people of shady characters and easy virtues in the corridors of society purporting to be advocates, whereas they are agitators.

“They do not understand the nuances and lack the rudimentary precepts of advocacy.

The Cambridge Online Dictionary defines an agitator as “someone who tries to make people take part in protests and political activities, especially ones that cause trouble”.

So agitator can be construed to be trouble maker. But what is the motivation of agitator or what makes an agitator to agitate? I have postulated that partial education is when the proper foundation is not laid and completed.

So those who choose, and I underscore “choose” to imply choice, to be partially educated lack the basic fundamentals of advancing their career objectives.

They cannot compete in a normal functioning society because they lack the basic skills.

They become relevant and thrive only when there is trouble and chaos in the land.”

Moreover, he said out of ignorance they parade as advocates and when the debates become heated, they retort to deploying invectives, blackmail, name calling and even indulging in physical attacks because they got absolutely nothing to contribute to an intellectual discourse.

Another effect of partial education, he said is its tendency to counterfeit, stating that when those of “you graduates, who have worked so hard to reach where you are intellectually, become complacent and refuse to checkmate and resist deliberate high school dropouts’ cancerous forays into your terrain, it is you who will be clarifying that you are the genuine high school graduates.

Quacks and fakes are noted for impersonating because they are street smart. They are manipulative and even copy words from other people and use them to imply that they originated from them. Anywhere they find themselves, they indulge in deviant behaviors.

For instance, in the field of journalism, they report fake news; and you put them in the Legislature, they carry out blackmail. They believe in ‘showmanship.’”

In closing, he told the graduates that if they graduates could surmount the challenges encountered before graduating today, especially the hustle to get transportation, buy books, study under Chinese lantern, eat roast cassava and coconut, and eat cold bowl, there is absolutely nothing that can prevent you people from succeeding in your future endeavors.

“Finally, you are leaving high school and I want you to know that it is just a good start. All of you graduates should commit to advancing your education.

Do not stop here! Use the foundation laid in high school as a platform to aspire for greatness because the person who graduates today, and stops learning tomorrow, is uneducated the day after.

I would be remiss if I did not thank the parents and guardians for their support to our graduates, and to all the teachers and staff, I salute you all,” he concluded.

For his part, the Superintendent of MCSS Adolphus Benjamin Jacobs extended profound gratitude to Dr. Twehway for his continual sacrificial contributions toward education in Liberia.

“You, Honorable Bill Twehway, you spent your career lifetime in Liberia education reform initiatives. Notably, you were a schoolteacher and administrator for many years.

Serving as Assistant Minister of Education for Research, Textbooks and Curriculum, you led a team of education stakeholders including international partners, heads of educational institutions, college professors and departmental heads, subject content specialists from public and privates schools, leaders from the National Teachers Association of Liberia, the National Principals Association of Liberia, the Liberian National Student Union and the National PTA, you developed and produced the current national curriculum being used today in all public, private, community and faith based schools in Liberia.

He recalled that Dr. Twehway, were one of the architects of the New Education Reform Law of 2011, adding “You, Honorable Bill Twehway, while serving as Representative for District 3, Montserrado County, in the Liberian National Legislature, you were Chairman of the House Committee on Education, and you led efforts to secure resources for the quick impact project of schools effected by the Ebola pandemic.

You took on a major responsibility to secure a parcel of land and built the Pipeline Junior and Senior High School, making it the first and only senior high public school in the district; you single handily paid the stipends for school administrators, teachers and support staff for the first three years of the school and you continue to this date to provide your personal funding, resources and other support to the school.”


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Liberia

Weeks, Others Spend Second Night

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…At Central Prison

Former and current Central Bank of Liberia (CBL) officials who were re-arrested Tuesday, August 20, 2019 and jailed have spent their second night at the Monrovia Central Prison.

Defendants Charles E. Sirleaf, Milton A. Weeks, Dorbor Hagba, Richard H. Walker and Joseph G. Dennis were re-arrested Tuesday, after prosecution changed their earlier charges to Money Laundering.

The defendants were immediately taken to the Monrovia Central Prison and jailed.

But defendant Sirleaf was released late Tuesday evening on medical ground while the others spent the night there.

Montserrado County Attorney Cllr. Edwin K. Martin told The NEWS Tuesday evening via mobile phone that defendant Sirleaf’s medical bill has since been before the court which indicates that he’s not well.

However, his colleagues remained behind bars, apparently they have not filed valid bond to be released.

On Tuesday, Judge Blamo Dixon of Criminal Court “C” ordered the defendants re-arrested and imprisoned until the right bond is proffered if possible.

The Judge in his ruling on Tuesday, August 20, 2019, said government lawyers should turnover every documentary evidence to the defendants through their lawyers in 72 hours to give the defendants sufficient notice and enable defense team to provide adequate representations.

He also commanded the sheriffs of the court to serve the defendants with the Writ of Arrest along with the indictment so they can be aware of the new crime charged by prosecution.

The defendants were first charged with Economic Sabotage, Criminal Conspiracy, Criminal Facilitation, Criminal Solicitation and Bribery.

The five former and current CBL officials who were re-arrested Tuesday, same being August 20, 2019, were immediately taken to the Monrovia Central Prison for the amended crime of Money Laundering that was imposed on them.

The defendants were re-arrested based upon the indictment prepared against them by the Grand Jury of Montserrado County.

The indictment said the Grand Jurors have taken an oath to find probable cause that the defendants at CBL at the time committed the crime of Money Laundering, a first degree felony in violation of chapter 15, sub-chapter “D”, section 15.2 (a) (b) (c) (d) (f) of the penal law of Liberia.

The crime, money laundering states that, “a person or body corporate or other legal entity commits the offense of money laundering if that person knowingly or having reason to believe that is the proceeds of crime: engages directly or indirectly in any transaction which involves the property; receives, possesses, conceals, disguises, transfers, converts, disposes of removes from or bring the property into Liberia; or participates in, associates with or conspires to commit, attempt to commit, or aids or facilitate the commission of any of the above acts.”

According to the indictment, on April of 2016 up to August of 2018, at their CBL offices, the defendants by virtue of their employments within the CBL deliberately, knowingly and intentionally colluded and conspired with the wicked intent to launder money and sabotage the Liberian economy.

It also revealed that the defendants defrauded the CBL and the government when they unauthorizingly printed excess Liberian dollar banknotes amounting to 2,645,000,000 (Two billion six hundred forty-five million Liberian dollars) to infuse into the Liberian market.


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Liberia

Weah Reiterates Commitment

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… To Protect Women

President Dr. George Manneh Weah has again reiterated his commitment to the promotion and protection of women and girls against sexual gender-based violence and gender inequality, an Executive Mansion release discloses.

The release said President Weah made the pledge Wednesday, August 21, 2019, at his Foreign Affairs Office when he received a petition from women who reportedly represented ten civil society organizations.

The women through their designated speaker, Mmenbeydo Joah-Harell petitioned the President to protect the rights of women, increase the number of women in government and provide security in District 15, Logan Town.

The Liberian leader told the petitioners that his commitment to gender equality and protection of the rights of women, girls and children would not diminish for any reason or by another force.

“I want to assure residents of Montserrado County, particularly voters and candidates of District 15, as well as all Liberians and the world that there would be a free, fair and transparent elections anytime under my administration,” the Liberian Chief Executive averred, adding that he would increase security presence in District #15 if there would be a rerun.

President Weah also reminded the women to take responsibility to preach peace. He urged the women to also prevail on their relatives, mainly youth, to at all times be peaceful and refrain from violence.

He used the occasion to once more call on leaders of political parties to encourage their supporters to be civil and peaceful during election times.

The Liberian Leader also promised a timely and prompt investigation into last Saturday’s violence in District 15.


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Liberia

Culture Of Impunity Must End

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…RWHR Wants War Crimes Court Established

The Regional Watch for Human Rights, Inc. (RWHR) has stressed the need for the Liberian Government to end the culture of impunity that it said has engulfed the Liberian society by the establishment of War and Economic Crimes Court.

Addressing a news conference Wednesday, August 21, 2019, in observance of International Justice Day Worldwide which was celebrated on July 17, 2019, Cllr. Thompson Adebayor, Regional Director of RWHR said Liberia failure to establish war crimes court for people to account for their actions is responsible for the recent wave of violence in the country.

He said had people who committed heinous crimes during the country’s civil unrest been prosecuted for their action, it would have served as deterrence for others.

Adebayor told journalists that the establishment of war crimes court would demonstrate the government commitment to fight impunity which he claimed appears to be taking over the country.

He said the establishment of war crimes court is in the best interest of the government and its people.

At the same time, Cllr. Adebayor said his group is troubled and concerned about the wave of violence and insecurity in the country.

He called on the government to probe the recent electoral violence in District#15, Montserrado County to ensure perpetrators are brought to book.

The RWHR boss said Liberia has come a long way relative to the maintenance of peace and stability, something it cannot afford to jeopardize.

He called on every political party to jealously guide the peace that the country currently enjoys.


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Liberia

“False Assets Declaration”

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…Rep. Gray Descends On Dillon

By A. Omaska Jallah

Montserrado County District #8 Representative Acarous Gray has described as ‘false asset declaration’ the recent declaration of assets by Senator Abraham Darius Dillon of Montserrado County, terming it as a violation to Section 10.3 of the Code of Conduct.

He said Senator Dillon declared his assets at the Liberian Senate without knowing and indicating his net salary on the assets declaration form provided to him by the Liberia Anti-Corruption Commission (LACC).

While taking over at the Liberian Senate, Senator Dillon presented all documents regarding his assets, but his gross and net salary as senator was not indicated, something he told journalists in a recent press conference that he has not being informed about his salary by the Senate; as such, he could not indicate it,

But Rep. Gray said this contradicts his understanding of assets declaration.

According to Section 10.3 of the Code of Conduct under sub topic ‘Sanctions for False Declaration’ “every Public Official and Employee of Government shall declare and affirm that his or her declaration is accurate to the best of his or her knowledge. Any statement in such declaration found to be false upon verification shall lead to summary dismissal and other measures provided by law.”

But speaking to Legislative reporters on Tuesday, August 20, 2019, the Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) Montserrado County District #8 lawmaker said Senator Dillon lied under oath, according to the mentioned section of the Code of Conduct; and as such, it is punishable under the same law.

He claimed that Senator Dillon violated the Code of Conduct relative to asset declaration; as such, he should be punished for misleading the public, noting that the senator undeclared his assets.

Rep. Gray maintained that Senator Dillon has betrayed historical comments made by him several months ago before coming to the senate.

Before his election, the Montserrado County Senator, in several public forums, stated that he will declare his assets if elected as senator and front for the reduction of salaries by senators at the Liberian Senate, something Gray described as political rhetoric that is yet to come to reality.

At the same time, Rep. Gray has disclosed that the CDC has filed a bill of exception to the National Elections Commission (NEC) which, according to him, is expected to be heard today.

According to him, the NEC haring officer that heard the complaints filed by the candidate of the collaborating party in the just ended Montserrado County District #15 by-election, Telia Urey, was in a contradiction.

The NEC hearing officer called for a rerun in the six quarantined precincts within the district, specifically Logan Town.

Rep. Gray said the hearing officer told the hearing that there was no fraud, yet he called for rerun.

This, the Montserrado County lawmaker said, is a complete contradiction by Hearing Officer.

Meanwhile, Rep. Gray has condemned the serious wave of violent perpetrated by both supporters of Telia Urey and Abu Kamara.

He called on supporters of candidates Urey and Kamara to remain calm.


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Liberia

Abu Kamara Reveals ‘Untold Story’

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…In Latest Electoral Violence

LINA

“It was the first time ever I saw my family shivering from fear and trauma caused by the sounds and cracks from stones thrown at our house. Cars parked in and around my compound owned by family and friends were also vandalized,” Abu Kamara, candidate of the ruling Coalition for Democratic Change (CDC) in District #15, Montserrado County, narrates his ordeal.

The statement on his social media platform followed the counter-throwing of projectiles by his supporters spurred by initial attacks by those loyal to his key opponent, Telia Urey of the All Liberian Party.

Supporters on both sides were injured in the process which happened in the lead-up to a re-run at six precincts in the district under the county’s combined Senatorial and Representative By-elections.

The car belonging to candidate Urey was also attacked, one account stated.

In his statement, though, Kamara said: “We witnessed another episode of an act of electoral violence within our District. I am ultimately concerned about the escalating tension and violence erupting fears into residents of our district and contaminating the peace we enjoy.”

“We must stop the fears and electoral violence by all means possible and free our people from this political servitude,” he added.

Furthermore, Kamara urged his partisans, supporters to detach and avoid any act of violence and remain calm as they progress to the re-run poll, adding that episodes of violence are fast approaching a point where they can cause division amongst the people and land their fate into a doom of anarchy. “Liberia stands beyond us.”

Meanwhile, Kamara says he stretches hand to meet rival Urey and her team of managers, the district governing council, religious leaders, and all stakeholders in the by-election of the district for a reconciliation meeting in a secluded environment to mend relation, mitigate future violence and put the interest of the people above their political egos.

“I caution all involved, especially my supporters, to remain steadfast to peace and remain calm by avoiding all forms of violence to enjoy our fragile peace,” said Kamara.


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