MESSENGER OF PEACE

first_imgAs our nation’s leaders continue to aspire for sustainable peace in Liberia, Messengers of Peace (MOP)-Liberia, from its embryonic stage in 2008 has remained committed to peace in Liberia.There is no bigger sign of this commitment than our foundation values of advocacy for Peace Education and non-violence through the concept of volunteerism. We remain the bearer of peace messages and take the lead role for Peace Advocacy involving youth in Liberia.One of the hallmarks of MOP-Liberia is the meaningful involvement and active participation as well as engagement of young people in advocacy programs for peace. At MOP-Liberia, what we have discovered in our nascent years of existence is that at the heart of most Liberian youth is the quest for peace to prevail.Our values, as presented last week, are centered on preparing young people in schools and communities for peace and non-violence through the transfer of knowledge and skills.In keeping with those goals, young people are actively involved in peace building initiatives such as the “21 Days of Peace Activism in Liberia” Community Sensitization Campaigns and formation of peace clubs in schools. They are also challenged to find a practical application of acquire information during the mentoring programmes.We are always willing to do the little things that contribute to the attainment of sustainable peace in Liberia. MOP-Liberia’s vision is to become one of the great Non-Governmental Organization (NGO), youth driven, voluntary movement in Liberia and theSub-region which stands for key peace values and is not afraid or reluctant to stand up for peace and non-violence.MOP-Liberia is a conscientious objector to any form of violence anywhere in the world. It remains committed to the key peace values of hard work, building trust, honesty, tolerance and respect for human dignity and diversity.As MOP enters its sixth year of operation, it has earned a reputation for not just being passionate but is recognized as an organization with a compassion for peace and is an advocate for non-violence. These are traits valued by several institutions (The Carter Center-Liberia, Liberia Peacebuilding Office, United Nations Mission in Liberia, United Nations Volunteer Programme, International Alert, Shirley Ann Sullivan Educational Foundation) and more international and local partners that MOP collaborates with as we execute our programmes on Peace buildings in the country.MOP takes very seriously its responsibility to provide a peace loving and child friendly environment for young people from different cultural backgrounds in all learning environment in Liberia.Our mission is to inculcate our shared values to young people in the various peace clubs (in schools and communities) spread across the country.It is our expectations that young people who benefit from our programmes and inculcated with our core values would be great examples of the dedication and commitment that MOP-Liberia stands for.Peace, above all. Peace First. Let Peace Prevail.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Irregular Tuesday at GECOM

first_imgDear Editor,The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) is again unavailable, reminiscent of his unavailability on Nomination Day. Whispers by persons not wishing to be quoted reveal that he has gone to court, but which court? Calls to his mobile phone go unanswered.So, I call Mr Anil Nandlall who appears in both matters filed in Georgetown and Berbice, only to find out that the Berbice matter is being heard at 14:00h so I conclude that that is where the CEO has gone apparently since morning. No one can say that he was at work earlier.There is a hive of activity in the compound. The printed ballots have arrived and boxes are being opened as they have been since 2 pm yesterday all through the night up to almost 4 am. The newly sworn-in DCEO is ostensibly supervising, although she seems somewhat out of her league, and ballots are being extracted as per constituencies, in all 80 Local Authority Areas (LAAs). Scrutineers from the PPP/C have been present throughout the exercise yesterday and today they have been joined by scrutineers from other stakeholders. The Auditor, Malika Gibson, from all reports, seems to have her act together and is doing a good job.Otherwise, an onlooker can be forgiven for describing the whole exercise as chaotic. The activity is in preparation for the enveloping of ballots for members of the Disciplined Services – Army, Police and Prison – who are listed to vote on D-day which is November 2, 2018, and amazingly, as of 1:30 pm today, the lists are yet to be shared with the stakeholders contesting the LGE! And there are people who still wonder why there is no trust in GECOM’s ability to get it right!The exercise is being conducted using a list of ballot stations and the numbers of persons from each constituency of each LAA, so the ballots are being extracted from the sealed boxes as per the numbers on that list.Commissioner Benn, having witnessed the chaos last night, and not getting any kind of positive reaction from the DCEO, left to acquire some box cutters to help speed up the opening of the sealed boxes. I hope he is able to recover the money he spent. GECOM has nippers, acquired in a less than transparent process, but no box cutters! The Commissioner had lent them a knife last night.We assemble for the statutory meeting of the Commission at 1 pm, the Chairman, whom I am informed, signed his contract just last week, comes in at 1:22 pm to say that his clock had stopped, hence his late arrival to the meeting room from his office less than 50 metres away, and apologises profusely, before he realises that there is no CEO, no scribe to take minutes, and, in fact, no support staff from the secretariat. He looks lost until I say that the CEO is ostensibly in Berbice, along with the Legal Officer, and this is hearsay from me, since I only knew that the Berbice matter was being heard at 2 pm. No official communication has been made to us as Commissioners and apparently neither to the Chairman if I am to go by his bewilderment! We tell the Chairman that Malika Gibson, who normally fills in when the Legal Officer is absent, did come up, but we all thought that her presence was crucial for the exercise being conducted outside, so all the Commissioners told her to go back so that that exercise would not be adversely affected by her absence.So the Commission meeting becomes a half-hour gaff, for which no notes are taken, and during this period, Commissioner Corbin with input from Commissioner Gunraj sought to give an oral report of their attendance in Calgary for the printing of the ballot papers and other sensitive election forms, eg, statements of polls. The report seemed to reveal some kind of non-uniformity with three of those forms, so I asked for a written report, which will hopefully tell all and which can be discussed at the next statutory meeting of the Commission.Meanwhile, it is agreed that the Operations sub-committee will meet every day at 3 pm and as often as necessary in an emergency. The whole Commission is also to be kept informed via email.The ‘gaff’, as I call, it ended at 2:00 pm. So, that is all I have for this week, folks, until next Tuesday, which, of course, will be the day after D-day. It is my plan to visit as many ballot stations as I can, to observe the process. My fellow Commissioners, I am sure, have similar plans.Sincerely,Bibi Safora ShadickGECOMCommissionerlast_img read more